Monday, 16 November 2009

MIA - What a week!

Well, I was truly "in action" as it was a really busy week with something happening out of the ordinary every day.....where to begin?

Monday was interesting because a fellow Governor and I had to go to the school at 3.15 pm to do a Building inspection - sort of health and safety - and we had never done one before so it was steep learning curve. The Head and the Caretaker knew what they were looking for, and we spent nearly two hours poking round all the classrooms, investigating stuff. It was interesting, and we had a long list of things by the time 5pm rolled around - nothing too major and all easily actionable.
After that, I came home for a quick cuppa and then took the FH and EFG to band practice - one to participate, one to listen, and the YFG and I went to the gym to set out the apparatus with the HC for about an hour. We got that sorted out, fetched the band brigade and headed home for supper.

Tuesday morning I had an earlier-than-usual start as I was at the gym at 8.45am to help with some classes for the kids at the school as a favour to the head of PE there. The kids were having an immersion day (whatever one of those is) and a lot of them were doing various sports for the morning. They were Y8 and 9 and so were consequently quite large! It was amusing but also irritating that some of the girls weren't in the mood to even have a go at a lot of it, in case it mucked their hair up - seriously! One of the teachers confided that the age they are at is a bad one for trying new things as they are very self-conscious and don't like to be the centre of attention when they are doing PE. If that is the case, I don't understand why the teachers asked us to do gym with them all morning.......we weren't impressed with their effort or attitude so I will be a bit reluctant to do it again.

I was able to pick a friend's little boy up from school for her at 3pm as she had to be elsewhere, and then went back at about 3.45pm for the YFG; her Performing Arts class had been cancelled as the teacher hadn't turned up (an external company runs this course) so we were called to pick up our kids. The YFG and I trundled off to gym at 4.30pm for the 5pm class and were there until 8pm.

Wednesday was a pretty run-of-the-mill day until 3pm when the YFG was involved in a football match for the school in an inter-village tournament in another village nearby. That was a new experience for both of us! They won one, lost one and drew two, so all in all they came third of five teams; holding their own and doing pretty well, I thought. All the dads and coaches/PE teachers/Headmasters shouting on the touchline was a pretty raucous noise and not one I was prepared for - this was a "B" team event, and they were Y5/6 kids, not Aston Villa vs Chelsea!

Thursday morning saw me clambering round the window sills at the church, helping with a pre-Christmas spring-clean! I was cleaning the windows, and then I brushed the outside of the windows as there was rather a colony of spiders on the outside of each one. The sun shone in a little brighter when I had finished. I then did some hoovering and we were all done by lunchtime.

In the afternoon, I loaded up the car to take books to sell at a shopping evening for the NSPCC not too far away, but over the county line into Norfolk. There were people of a rather more affluent nature there, but they still didn't spend terribly well, unfortunately. It was a well-attended evening, and I did a little shopping myself. The downside was the torrential rain when we had to clear up - I had the back door of the Volvo estate open so I could load up all the boxes and then when I went to put it down, an absolute torrent of water came off it and fell all down my legs. Wearing sodden jeans was no fun and so I stopped the car in the dark half a mile further on from the hall and took them off!

Friday morning the whole family was up before daybreak so that we could all be ready to leave the house shortly after 7.15am as the FH and I were at a big show for the day and the girls went to our lovely neighbour until it was time to go to school. The show went well, although we were on our feet all day - but it was good fun and we do enjoy being together at things like this. On the way home, the FH dropped me off at the gym and I taught two classes; the YFG had got there with a friend, and then the HC brought us home at 8.40pm. I had a really good evening at gym as the first class was great and then I coached the boys' class with a volunteer helper whilst the HC took the YFG and her friend S for an extra hour's coaching, just the two of them working hard together. I enjoyed leading the class for a change, and it was a pleasure!

Saturday I grabbed a lie-in until 8am so I didn't get to gym until about 10.15 with the YFG for the second class. We have been working with some of the older girls to put on a little display at Christmas so we spent some time on that, which is a challenge, trying to get all the girls to co-ordinate their arms and legs to go in the same direction at the same time AND stay in time with the music. We have a few more weeks to practise, thank goodness.

We went shopping - food from Sainsbury's and hamster things (bedding and stuff for the bottom of the cage) from the pet shop, where the YFG also bought her two hamsters a new cage as the tank they had been in was not working out for them - too much condensation! She bought quite a posh one with lots of accessories included, so they got moved to their new home once we got back. They spent a lot of time investigating everything, and seem to have settled in really well.
After the shopping we then came home to get the school uniforms washed and all the shopping put away. Saturday evening was largely spent conked out, watching Strictly and just getting up at intervals to re-boot the washing machine! An early night was in order as we were all at the show again on Sunday.

The girls like to come to some of the shows with us for the shopping opportunities that they provide. They were given a £5 each and told not to ask more more - they stretched those fivers to within an inch, both coming back with a good haul of goodies for their money, including legwarmers (They do say fashion comes in cycles - I remember having a royal blue pair in the 80s!), cosmetics, sweets, and bits of stationery. The YFG was looking forward to having a go on the ice rink, but we watched some others on it and decided not to bother as it was just plastic tiles on the floor and people were not able to skate properly, so we thought it wasn't worth the £2 they were charging.

There was an interesting phone call from the EFG at one point in the afternoon; we had taken our little trailer as we had books to return to the boss, and the girls used it as their retreat, somewhere to go and play on their DSs and to picnic. It has a roller-shutter door on the back, and they get in and pull it down most of the way for warmth and privacy. The EFG was out there alone and some helpful soul pulled the shutter right down and put the clasp in so she was trapped. The person obviously (we hope!!) didn't realise that she was in there, so she called me on her mobile to have me send the YFG to let her out. We all had a good laugh over that, her included!

Last night, we were home by 6.30pm so that the girls could watch the Dr Who special whilst I fixed a quick bangers and mash tea - and it was so quick I used Smash!! My dad rang to say that they had had news of a death - the man that dad worked for for years and years, and who is my sister's godfather died yesterday morning. He was just six months younger than dad but his health had been failing in recent weeks. It was the end of an era as he had been a prominent coaching company owner in the area for about 25 years, although the company had been bought up in the 80s by a bigger company. In coaching history, he's there in the books! (By coaching here, I mean the bus industry, not sports coaching).

I ironed the school uniforms and the gang were all in bed by about 9.30pm although I watched a film until about 11pm. Today I feel quite worn out, and have just finished off the ironing and done another load of washing but nothing too energetic at all!

The FH has also had the swine flu jab at some point this week, but I can't remember which day - may have been Thursday evening. The Jane Austen tapes have also been posted to Carole this afternoon - what with the postal strikes at the start of the month and then rushing around last week, they had been delayed. Hope you like them, and enjoy your ironing as you listen. They should be with you within a couple of days!

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