I am starting to wonder if I am alone in loving the “round robin” letters that arrive every year tucked into our Christmas cards. They seem to be very out of “vogue” at the moment, and I’ve noticed the number I receive seems to be less each year, but I’m still merrily producing and sending mine, and love receiving them too. Having written mine for this year I thought it actually makes a pretty good summary of our year, so I thought I would share it here too.
Every time someone asks me how I am doing, or how things are going, I struggle to think of anything to say other than “things are going really well”. Our family are all happy, and healthy, and life is good. As we approach the end of 2013 I am happy to share with you our regular family update.
The geekdaughter was 6 in October, and has just finished her first term in her second year at primary school (which is rather confusingly called Year 1). She is starting to develop strong friendships, and is doing very well academically. Her reading and writing are both improving day by day (which is a blessing and a curse, as we are now much less able to pull the wool over her eyes than we used to be!). She has also been learning science with the Mad Science after school club, and likes nothing more than coming home and telling us how something works, or how to do experiments!
Outside of school she continues her swimming lessons, where her latest achievement is to have swum for 10 metres without stopping. She’s also been taking ballet lessons for just over a year, and has just taken her first exam – pre-primary level. We haven’t heard her result yet. She loves her dancing, and this year, for the first time, has sat and watched every episode of “Strictly Come Dancing” with me and not got bored during the “talkie bits”! She sits with pencil and paper writing down who is doing which dance, and scores each of them as well!
Somehow my little baby boy is now a very grown up (his words, not mine!) three and a half year old. We’ve hit some major milestones this year by completing toilet training, and by taking the sides off his cot so he now sleeps in a “big boy bed”. So I definitely can’t call him my baby any more!
The geekson attends pre-school two days per week, where he seems to be getting on very well. He is always at his happiest when playing with his cars or trains. I take him swimming once a week, and after a period before the summer when he got very uncooperative and we had to spend most lessons just playing with a rubber duck whilst the rest of the class got on with the actual swimming, he is now one of the most advanced in the class. His favourite activity is jumping in to the water from the side.
He’ll be starting school in September, which is a very scary thought indeed!
We’ve enjoyed some lovely family holidays this year. First of all, through this blog I became one of Center Parcs’ official family bloggers for 2013, and with that we received a complimentary weekend stay at Center Parcs Whinfell forest. The kids had their first taste of horseriding, which they both loved, and the geekdaughter proved to us that she could ride a bicycle without stabilisers (the sneaky girl had learnt at school!).
Then at the start of the summer holidays we flew down to the South of France to stay with some friends. They had asked the geekdaddy to be a guide-parent to their younger daughter, and the naming ceremony was held while we were out there. They also showed us all around the area, and the kids got their first taste of playing on the beach and swimming in the sea. And at the end of it all, the geekson still said the best part was flying on the plane!
Juggling many balls
The geekdaddy is keeping himself busy with a number of activities. His main work is still the family ticket printing business, Performance Ticket Printers, which he runs with his Mum and his sister, but he has also worked as a photographer and videographer this year whenever he’s managed to persuade anyone to pay him! He has also started running an after-school Code Club at the geekdaughter’s school this term, where he teaches 9-11 year olds the basics of computer programming. He’s finding this really rewarding, and loves teaching the kids.
Changes at work
There’s been quite a lot of changes at my work, which have resulted in my having four different line managers this year! Whilst it’s been a little unsettling, I’ve ended up joining a new team where I love the work and the people I work with, so it’s all ended up really well. I decreased my working time to three days per week when the geekdaughter started school, and it really is the perfect work/life balance for me.
In 2011 we very sadly lost two of our three cats. Well I’m pleased to report our last surviving cat, Elliott, is still going strong! He’s 18 now, which is a fantastic age. He seems to be almost completely deaf, has lost a lot of weight and most of his fur, but he still loves cuddles and purrs very loudly when anyone makes a fuss of him!
In 2014 I am looking forward to making my return to the amateur stage after quite a long break. I’m joining Knutsford Little Theatre for their production of Deathtrap. I am very excited about treading the boards again!
We are also going to be looking for a new car early in the year – the geekdaddy’s is getting a bit long in the tooth, and I desperately want something a bit more fuel efficient.
No holidays planned yet, but hopefully we’ll manage to get away at some point during the year!
I hope you’ve all had a very Merry Christmas and wish you all a very happy 2014 🙂
2013 image courtesy of Stuart Miles / FreeDigitalPhotos.net