The snow bomb cleared and our slightly delayed fortnight in Devon began. In March various holiday parks offer breaks on their holiday parks for silly prices and quite rightly we have taken advantage. We settled into our daily routine pretty quickly ; Up late, breakfast, table work , out exploring, then back to the caravan to sit on our bums and chill.
I am continuing to work on knitting the poncho that I wish I had never started. The pattern for Twin Peaks gloves became far more appealing ten rows in. But I have started now so no going back.
We are staying on a site in Dawlish, so our first day was spent down at the sea front exploring and playing spot the flood. Dawlish is well known for it’s black swans.
Sadly we haven’t come across any yet. Perhaps they have gone on holiday too. However on the bank of the river (Dawlish Water) running up the centre of Dawlish , is a little bird sanctuary. Youngest was really impressed by the different breeds of waterfowl. Even eldest gave it more than a cursory glance.
We bought sausage rolls from the best shop in Dawlish, the amazing Gay’s Creamery.
Two of the best ever sausage rolls were sixty pence and their ice cream is unbeatable. They sell everything else that you would want as a tourist, hence the size of the shop.
Dawlish is the perfect place for an out of season break. If you are looking for somewhere quiet(ish) but with plenty to see and do, Dawlish is for you.
We went to Dawlish Warren beach today, fun even in March.
We are still working our way through the masses of crumble made by eldest this week with a little help from youngest.
The recipe we used is below:
3 cooking apples
75g brown sugar
250g Gluten Free Plain flour
150g caster sugar
We eat gluten free and so this is a Gluten Free recipe. The flour we use is Doves Farm Gluten Free Flour.
One was made with rhubarb, which i love, but everyone else hates, so i got most of it. We have one left. It is sat in the oven at the moment and i can smell it.
Youngest loves the Jacqueline Wilson books. Diamond Girls has been read so many times that her paper back version is now falling apart and she has now started on the hardback edition found in the local charity shop.
We got a job lot of Jaqueline Wilson books from a friend a while ago and youngest is gradually working her way through them.
Yesterday for World Book Day she decided to dress as one of the characters from Double Act. It is one of her favorite books at the moment. I say one of her favorites, as she is currently reading three titles at the same time. She spent the morning yesterday finishing off colouring in an old t shirt donated by eldest so she could dress as one of the twins in the story. She loves the fact that they are twins and yet they are so different. Jacqueline Wilson’s books are aimed at three different age groups, so when buying the books be aware of this. Her books include lots of different life experiences such as friendships, divorce, adoption and death, introduced to readers as part of the stories. The books with a historical background such as Hetty Feather are sat on our bookshelf waiting to be read. Youngest enjoyed learning about the Victorians last year so this is bound to be a hit too.
Youngest read Daydreams and diaries a while ago and learned all about young Jaqueline’s childhood and her desire to become a writer. It has inspired youngest who is currently working on her first story on her quest to be a writer too.
A while back we obtained a Raspberry Pi, ready programmed and complete with keyboard and monitor. I pulled it down from the loft a couple of weeks ago and youngest has been getting to grips with Scratch. So far she has dabbled with movement, speech and background.
It is a very easy programming tool for kids. Coding animations, games and interactive stories. Using drag and drop comands to make a script , the characters can be programmed to interact with each other and their surroundings as part of a story.
Scratch is suitable for children of primary and secondary age, as animations can be both simple and more complex.
The link for scratch is below.
The annual Big Garden Birdwatch takes place between the 27th and 29th January. My youngest did it last year and we have ordered the pack this year too from the RSPB website (link below).
Over one hour during the three dates above participants watch and count birds that land in their garden or other chosen location. The results are recorded on a sheet provided in the RSBP pack. Youngest will be doing the bird count on Saturday 28th. When we return our results to the RSBP they will use them to gain a picture of where the different birds are in the country. The pack can be downloaded from the website so it’s not too late to take part.
I had a wobble recently over our choice to remove youngest from school. Things have not run smoothly over the last few months since eldest received his epilepsy diagnosis. Adjustments have had to be made and the new situation has affected us all in some way or another. The way the kids’ week had been organised last spring and summer was impossible to continue and September to December was in retrospect about finding a new routine that worked. And now that we have found that routine, one that works for all of us I have suddenly remembered that only in Home Education are we able to do this. Youngest has wanted to do some more structured learning groups and eldest has managed to get back to his guitar lessons for the first time since his diagnosis in the summer. We are moving in a better direction and with that I feel more confident in our decision to Home Educate. For of course the problem wasn’t Home Ed but the giant bomb blast of Epilepsy that hit our family. But we are getting on with it and progressing through treatment and adapting together. And Home Education is an integral part of that. It allows us to be a close working unit, to support eldest and each other, to get through this at our own pace without being affected or influenced by anyone else.
Christmas jigsaw, making bird food and Robot making at STEM science
It has been a strange Christmas this time. Whilst still adjusting to eldest’s Epilepsy and all that comes with a so far uncontrolled neurological condition, it has proved difficult when it has come to receiving visitors. His seizures have, very unhelpfully, turned out to be triggered mostly by noise which of course is absolutely everywhere he goes. The end result is that he goes nowhere or else goes out and behaves in bizarre and uncontrolled ways due to focal seizures and tics. We have the latest neurology appointment in a few days to discuss EEG and MRI results followed by next steps with medication.
Being around other people at Christmas was a struggle for him and therefore us, but the time when it was just the four of us at home was great. We have had even more stay at home time recently with the intervention of the lovely Flu that we managed to catch on a recent visit to Yorkshire.
Therefore it has been a slow start to the year. Youngest has started a new Maths and English Home Ed group which she loves and the eldest has managed to start back at his guitar lesson this week, for the first time since the seizures started. A while back he said that guitar was too hard. I didn’t appreciate until the day of the guitar lesson and i saw that the epilepsy is actually affecting his ability to play the notes. But it still made him happy to go back and do something that he loves so i’m trying not to care.
This term eldest is going to crack on with his Art Award Bronze whilst youngest is enjoying learning about egyptians and animation. We are hoping to finish an animation which we began making some time ago about the Loch Ness monster, so watch this space.