Saturday, 31 July 2010

And we're off again

Another holiday, how spoilt are we this year!?! This time we're off to Centre Parcs with Granny, my brother, his partner and my nephews. A proper family holiday. Then down to my brothers and all off to a family wedding. We're very excited!

I feel I have been neglecting Educational Escapades lately. To be honest I've been having a bit of a blog-wobble (that really is a fantastic term - say it out loud, you'll see what I mean!). I've been wondering whether this is really a good thing for me to be doing, asking myself questions such as: am I repeating myself? Is it getting boring? Is it taking up too much of my time? All of which has made me assess why it is I write this blog.

Partly I write to try and keep a bit of a record of what we do. Partly its to offer one example of what home ed can be like. Partly its to connect with other bloggers. But what I've realised is its also become a representation of me as a writer, because I've linked to it through so much work related stuff, and that is a very different thing . Somehow, because of the way I approached it from the start - as a loose, chatty journal - it doesn't feel 'good enough'.

Another issue, which pops up from time to time when I'm feeling insecure, is the tendency I have to look at other HE blogs and feel that everyone else is doing it so much better than me. There are some amazing HEors out there, and in positive moments I can find their blog posts inspiring and motivating. But when I'm feeling low I become very self-critical and just see how inadequate I am as a HEor.

I'm trying to be very objective here, to really look at whats going on and why I'm feeling so troubled about it all. Being rational about it I know that none of the negative stuff is true, and if it is, it doesn't actually matter. This is just one tiny little blog in an inconceivably massive blogosphere. If I can just concentrate on being honest, and writing for me and A, then none of the other stuff matters.

I'm going to take some time while we're away to really try and get my head around this, and find a bit of clarity in my thinking. Hopefully I'll come back refreshed and renewed, with a more positive approach to blogging.

Sunday, 18 July 2010

What have we been up to?

Quite a sociable, busy couple of weeks - visiting old friends for a weekend, and catching up with lots of other friends we haven't seen for a while.


Having our hair dyed:

Doing some henna tattoos:

Going to see the new twilight film - far too soppy for my liking, but A really enjoyed it

And A has been updating her new blog .

Sunday, 4 July 2010


Anyone who follows this blog will know that I have regular maths-related anxiety attacks. Don't know why its maths in particular that gets me this way, might be partly to do with A's own feelings about the subject, but anyway, I have been known to lie awake at night worrying myself half to death about whether I am failing my daughter, and will she turn around in ten years time and say "I never learnt my times tables properly because you didn't make me, and because of that my life is now ruined". Not sure why her life would be ruined by this, but my catastrophising generally doesn't need reason.

I decided to do a general review last week, just for myself really, and go through all the 'work' A has been doing this year (by work I mean any interests/activities, not just written stuff). Looking at it as objectively as possible I don't have any concerns - I think she's got a great, and full 'curriculum', which covers a broad range of 'subjects' (I know I'm putting all this in schoolish terminology, which doesn't really apply to the way we do things, but I suppose I do use what she would be doing at school as some kind of comparison when I'm assessing things). She's a bright girl, with clear strengths and weaknesses, but no particular problems with what she's learning (Oh God, this is starting to sound like a school report!)

But I knew all that anyway. What I was really pleased about - from an assessing point of view rather than being involved in the learning process - was how she's progressing with maths. Looking at what she's covered, through the online site we're using and the other material relevant to each theme that I've brought in, made me feel really positive about it all. Sometimes I just need to step back a bit and be a bit more objective, instead of getting all caught up in the parental fear/anxiety/guilt about what she should be doing, because actually she's doing fine. In fact, she's doing brilliantly, and she's happy.

Took a visiting friend to Cawdor yesterday, just for a walk around the gardens and the woods, here are some pictures:

In character

The walled garden

Sculpture made from flint
Bee on a thistle
View from a bridge
Had a lovely girly night last night - make-overs and chocolate facepacks; home made pizza; DVDs; painted toenails - a very late night and a lie-in this morning. Perfect.

Saturday, 3 July 2010


A beautiful evening sky outside our (dirty) top window:

A lot of skipping has been going on lately, with both of us trying to keep in shape: