Wednesday, 20 July 2011

Schools out for summer...

Who will have that song stuck in their heads now? Hands up?

It's Big Cuckoo's last day of his reception year today and I feel very wobbly about it. I was fine when he started school back in September, I was excited for him. Of course I was nervous, what mother isn't? But  as mum of a little boy with very specific needs because of having a dodgy chromosome, I was especially concerned. Yet on that first day he walked in to the class room, lay down on the mat and kicked his shoes off. He then high fived me instead of a good bye kiss and I knew he was alright. Today I feel emotionally fragile, how will he cope with the big change in routine? How will he settle back in September in year 1 with a new classroom, a new teacher, and real proper learning as opposed to purely play based learning?

He has fared brilliantly, ok so he can't very well count to five but he can write his name quite neatly and he does recognise numbers and letters. But he is confident and well liked, he is kind and well behaved. He has settled in and it's more than we hoped for.

For his teachers leaving gift I made an apple cosy, I expect there are lots of teachers receiving one of these from crafty mums across the country.  Big's teacher is a whipper snapper of only 21 years old so I got her a few other more appropriate gifts too. I just felt it was important to properly thank her for being the best teacher we could have wished for for our boy. The rest of the team were given some cookies and homemade tissue holders. The whole class has chipped in to a kitty and there will be a little presentation later this afternoon but I wanted to add our own special thanks since they have spent a lot of extra time nurturing Big.

So now the chaos of summer starts. I think there are two camps when it comes to the long holidays.  The camp where the Mums are desperate for the holidays, to be able to slow down, to avoid the school run, to actually get away on a holiday away from home. Then there's the camp that is slightly dreading it. I'm afraid to say I am a bit worried about it. 6 weeks of chaos with 3 kids five years and under. Big is very destructive (scroll to the last part of that post for an example), his brother follows his lead, the baby needs attention, the boys need entertaining, there's all the householdy stuff to keep on top of. I find that while I am straightening out a mess the boys have made they are off somewhere else making more mess, emptying cupboards and then filling them with toys and cushions, I run around in circles getting more and more frustrated that I can't get on top of everything. That's there's no let up and not enough time for crafting, blogging... We also have  two* separate weeks away from home so there's all the packing, unpacking and washing to be done. We have house guests coming too which is just lovely but it all adds to the general feeling of losing track...but I shall try to go with the flow and when Mr C comes home to a house that looks like it's been burgled and says "What have you done all day?" I shall take it for what it is,  a request for information about how we have filled the hours since he left for the (neat, tidy, quiet, organised) office, not an exclamation of horror at the state of the place.

"Sorry about the mess!" I shall say "We've been busy making memories"


*Possibly just the one week away for me and Mini as I have totally forgotten to get him a passport. We have an emergency appointment on Tuesday next week in Newport Passport Office. Fingers crossed it arrives in time... What a fool.


  1. My darling. I have decided to let the house goes nuts for 6 weeks, or else I will. I have to accept it will be a tip at times, get trashed, kids will whinge when not entertained 24/7.Deep breathing and thinks.
    If the husband dared so much as to ask what I do all day, he would be in SEVERE trouble. He knows not to fire me up in that department!!!
    Can totally understand your feelings re Big.
    The Princess starts a new school in Sept. I had a tear at the leavers' assembly today. She had quite a big part to play with reading out to all the parents and I felt so blubby and emotional!
    The Prince's passport took 2 weeks in total...we almost forgot. You are not alone.
    x x x x

  2. PS can't believe the effort you went to with the teacher's gifts (LOVE the apple cosy).
    We have a little bracelet for the TA and a photo frame for the teacher which the Princess will draw a pic to put inside. We did a moonpig card for the lollipop man because he rocks.
    HOW do you find time to make all this stuff and bake..christ.....
    x x x

  3. Ahhhhhh yes, I am soooooooooo with you on this. Last year I DREADED the summer hols. Baby Bear was at the age where he taunted his brothers rotton and it made for many a shouting match. You so have this coming in a few years! This year he is worse! I can get through the day at the moment knowing that I have 6 hours a day of quiet.

    The house becomes a tip and like you say, you are busy clearing up one mess whilst another one is being created. So, this summer, I am not going to care. So what it looks like we live like pigs. For 6 weeks and my state of health intact, i'm prepared for it and going to just accept it!!!!!! ha ha! Just hope no one snobby knocks on the door unexpected!!!!!! Actually though, the house has been a mess for the last couple of weeks and I am solely to blame. I decided that, in my moment of crafty craziness I would get EVERYTHING out and have a play around. 2 weeks later it is still there and I get the looks from hubby when he walks through the door like 'oh it's all still out then'!!!!!!!!! Maybe I will clear up ready for the hols next week.

    Love that phrase though.........pinterest? Want that on my wall!!!!!!! Would he me justify it all!

    Oooooohhhhhhhhhhhhh noooooooooooooo, hope the passport comes in

  4. You are not alone with those fears, I remember feeling the same with my boys. Ben 18 and Josh 16, I still worry...just about different things now. And as for mess and that feeling of the days and weeks passing you by, I think all of us Mums can relate to that. Being a Mum is the hardest job in the world.

    Wishing you all a fantastic summer holiday and I will keep everything crossed for the passport.

    Lou xxx

  5. You will be fine in the Hols! But then I am firmly in the camp of being glad not to have to do the school run. Remember that it is ok to still be in pyjamas at lunch time! I am off to buy waterproof trousers for my 2 so that we can go out in the sfternoon whatever the weather. As for the mess, well I often think a mess is a small price to pay for happy children and 5 minutes alone to drink a cup of tea! Happy holidays!! Xx

  6. Hello :) I am going to be having a nice cuppa coffee at Fanny Adams next Thursday, will you be around? Perhaps we can finally meet!
    Have a lovely holiday with your children.

  7. Ohhhh it's all so emotional! Everyone's talking about their kids starting, leaving and going up classes in school. I'm beginning to imagine what it'll be like when Rose leaves home!! :S haha. Time realllyy seems to be flying by so quickly though.
    Big's teacher is very lucky with all those gifts, a whipper snapper eh!? She's the same age as me! haha does that make me one too..??
    Try not to get too stressed about the mess in the house, there's not really much you can do about it.. apart from have a nervous breakdown! Mr C wouldn't dare make a comment!

    Ashley xxx

  8. Em, I know how you feel - I've gone through mixed emotions as 1 of mine is moving from primary to secondary. It's amazing how they cope though - I think it's more us than them!

    Try and enejoy the summer hols!

  9. As a teacher i adore the 6 weeks! ha ha. How kind you were to your sons teacher. We really do appreciate being appreciated! xx

  10. How long before you go away on holiday? And how much space between the two?
    What you could do, is decide on the basic clothes for each person that are being taken on holiday. Wash them, dry them, and pack them NOW in your suitcases. Then the suitcases are out of bounds, less laundry because it reduces the number of clothes that will get messy, and you have already done most of your packing. When you get back from your first holiday ... unpack, wash it all in the same go, dry it and re-pack it.

    Make a tent or a teepee or a fort in the garden, feed all meals in the fort. outside = less mess. If you get really stuck you can always use (very non eco friendly but what can you do) disposable cutlery.

    Have you got friends with similar age children? invite them round, ask them to bring a plate of food and you can share the childcare responsibility so that at least one of you at one time can drink a hot cup of tea!

    That's about all I can think of apart from bribery.

  11. Ah, happy hols to the Cuckoos! My poor boys have still got another week to go. (I am in the 'can't wait til the school run's over' camp, but I'm cheating cos Mr N's a teacher, so is off too. Sorry...)
    Lovely pressies for their teachers - Big N's teacher was thrilled with her Chipper Nelly block (had plans to snatch it back from her and leg it out of there if she hadn't looked suitably pleased).
    Have left you an award at my blog - hope you haven't got it already!
    Emily x

  12. All I can say is that at least summer holidays don't last FOREVER for you the same way they do for children! If the passport doesn't come through, I'll babysit Mini for the week...

  13. Well, my house is already a tip, so not much will change there! I look forward to the hols (for the lie ins, of course!) but usually feel ready to pull my hair out by 4 weeks in! We'll see how this year goes - I have lots of plans for handwriting and times tables practice but they'll probably end up on the wii all day instead ;)
    R x

  14. More ((((hugs)))) for Cuckoo - it is emotional when our little ones pass these milestones. My youngest is going to senior school this September and I know I will be sad when he leaves juniors.

    We did exactly the same with the kids passports a couple of years ago and Mr G had to go to London to get one - we did the thing where you wait for a few hours while they do it, it costs quite a bit more though!!

    Your comments about hubby's horror at the mess reminded me of one of my favourite stories:

    One afternoon a man came home from work to find total mayhem in his house. His three children were outside, still in their pajamas, playing in the mud, with empty food boxes and wrappers strewn all around the front yard. The door of his wife's car was open, as was the front door to the house and there was no sign of the dog.

    Proceeding into the entry, he found an even bigger mess. A lamp had been knocked over, and the throw rug was wadded against one wall .. In the front room the TV was loudly blaring a cartoon channel, and the family room was strewn with toys and various items of clothing.

    In the kitchen, dishes filled the sink, breakfast food was spilled on the counter, the fridge door was open wide, dog food was spilled on the floor, a broken glass lay under the table, and a small pile of sand was spread by the back door.

    He quickly headed up the stairs, stepping over toys and more piles of clothes, looking for his wife. He was worried she may be ill, or that something serious had happened.

    He was met with a small trickle of water as it made its way out the bathroom door. As he peered inside he found wet towels, scummy soap and more toys strewn over the floor. Miles of toilet paper lay in a heap and toothpaste had been smeared over the mirror and walls.

    As he rushed to the bedroom, he found his wife still curled up in the bed in her pajamas, reading a novel. She looked up at him, smiled, and asked how his day went. He looked at her bewildered and asked, "What happened here today?"

    She again smiled and answered, "You know every day when you come home from work and you ask me what in the world did I do today?"

    "Yes" was his incredulous reply.

    She answered, "Well, today I didn't do it."

    S x

  15. You have three littlies under five so at least you have an excuse for an untidy house. I on the other hand have to try and think up new and never used before excuses for my lack of domesticity in the housework department. My mother always says it will still be there tomorrow so why worry about it today.

    Big hugs to you cuckoo, i love reading your blog and your children are soooo gorgeous.

    Melanie x

  16. Hope you have happy holidays, and enjoy your time with with your family, sounds like you have slot going on.

  17. Oh I'm so with you. It is my eldest last day in reception on Friday and we had their leaving ceremony today. I'm a little scared of the holidays too but find the first week is the most tricky and then we settle into a rhythm of activity and I do like not having to rush out of the house. Mine are 3 and 1 too so we're definitely on the same page!

  18. Love the line about making memories!!!!
    And we had passport issues last year, where my husband hadn't sorted his and our youngest until RIGHT before we left, we had to pay the premium superfast fee to get them quickly, and even with that, he was almost stranded in Scotland, the DAY before Christmas when we were flying back home!!! He has dual citizenship, and there were passport dramas!!!
    All ended up well in the end but :)
    Your holidays will be lovely

  19. " we have been making memories" what more can you say to that ;-)) Never a more true word said magical memories of children just being themselves. Go with the flow, don't put any pressure on yourself to keep up with everything you would do normaly because with 3 children at home you will wear yourself out trying. Just keep " making memories" in your head and you will fly ;-)) Have a lovely summer, dee x

  20. Our kids have just gone back after a 2 week break, we have three, two week breaks during the year, then 6 weeks over Christmas which is our summer holiday and the kids start their new school year at the end of January. Aunty Sandi is very proud of big, and it shows what great parents you are that he felt so comfortable about starting his reception year. I always had to wear sunglasses on the last day of school, year in year out as I would always cry. I cry when I watch my daughter dance, ok so I am a sook.
    I loved the school holidays but I didn't have three children under 5 to contend with. I love your 'making memories' I am going to use that one myself!!
    Have a wonderful holiday, hope the sun shines for you and you make some more wonderful memories :)
    xo Sandi

  21. Ms C, first off, thanks so much for alerting me to the fact that I'm a no-reply blogger! Since I'm a techno dummy I don't have a clue what that means, but I fixed it as per your wonderful post a while back. You are simply the best :-)

    Your photo of the apple cozy on its pedestal is delightful. Love the composition of it! I'm such a novice photographer, but tend to notice these details.

    I'm exhausted for you reading about life with your kiddies! My boys are teens now and how I would love a chance to go back in time for a little while to re-live a slice of those years. With age, I've become even more sentimental! So my dear, embrace and enjoy every minute of the chaos, craziness and clutter. I know you are, your posts are delightful to read!


    P.S. About the Noro, I think yes it would be great for socks. Since it would be a small project, you wouldn't have to take a mortgage out on your house! I've never knitted socks, but would love to as well. Good luck with the're definitely getting it :-)

  22. I think I fall somewhere in the middle with the school holidays thing.

    I love having time with my two but know that the moaning and arguing some days will drive me bandy! My eldest is like a little soldier and likes to have an itinery for the day. Unfortunately for her she has a ditzy airy fairy type mother that does not plan for the next hour much less a whole day! lol.

    As for mess well that seems to of already started their bedrooms already looks like two little pigstys. I think it might have to just be a case of being blind to mess and deaf to the moaning on the bad days. I am hoping there wont be many! lol.

    You are such a laugh! I was laughing my head off at your comment over at my blog! Although to be honest DBB is a bit of a devil when it comes to comic things like rude vegtables he didnt get round to chasing me round the garden with it, although I think if it had entered his mind he might of! No he was brandishing the huge green thing rather furtively round the living room doorway. Furtive because the girls were about in the next room!

    Men honestly! lol.

    Hope you have a lovely summer holiday and get your passport troubles sorted too!

    MBB x

  23. I know exactly how you feel,I'm just trying not to think about 6 weeks of I'm bored!! Although it is getting a bit easier as my two are getting older.Im sure big cuckoo will be fine come September,try not to worry too much.xx
    Love the teachers gifts you made,so thoughtful.I hope you get the passports sorted out in time,oh poor you.take care & my motto as always drink lots of tea!Thats what I'll be doing, Take care,hun.xxxxx

  24. Kiddos where you live leave school in late July and go back in September? Here they get out the first of June and go back in late Sept.

    Hope you get to have both vacations, and I hope you have so much fun and get a wonderful break from the dailies. Good luck on getting that last minute passport!

  25. Sorry about being a 'tardy reply' blogger, but it took me soo long to read all the comments! Summer will be great - found all these lovely ideas on so I'm going to give some of them a go! My plan's are already changed as P's now got her arm in plaster and Guides won't let her go to camp! Flapjacks are still work in progress!
    Jo x

  26. I HAVE MY TICKETS AND I'M COMING TO SEE YOU! We can drink cocktails and ignore the mess together. x

  27. Oh big up to Big for getting through reception successfully. So it will be emotional for you when he starts school properly... Sounds as though he loves it - will be rooting for him in September.

    I can't believe that it's 'the rage' to give presents to teachers these days - I'm sure I didn't give my teachers any presents at year end. I've always fancied being a teacher but especially so hearing about all the gorgeous gifts they're getting! The apple cosy is cute as a button and I love the little cake dome it's in. I'm going to have to stop reading your blog soon, you give me the wanties too much.

    I agree with the other comments, just let your house get trashed for the summer. In fact, I think you should join in with the trashing. You will go crazy if you try to keep on top of it, surely. At least you can escape for a couple of weeks and trash somewhere else instead for a bit!

    Nicki xx

    PS How's Little doing?

  28. You make so many beautiful things! Would love for you to link into - a directory of the creatively inclined!


I L♡VE your comments. Thank you ever so for taking the time. I do try to get back to everyone but I am rather scatty and I have these 3 big distractions....(and I'm just generally a bit rubbish lately, so please don't feel obliged to leave a note) Sorry about the word verification too, too much spam.