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Winter Wonderland: The Revenge (W)

Winter Wonderland:  The Revenge (W)

Winter Wonderland: The Revenge

The winters view from our hotel room, lots of snow!

No excuse not to ski, plenty of snow!

Last month, we embarked on our third winter skiing trip of the season.  We had learnt our lessons this time though, oh yes. This time we won’t leave stupidly late. This time we will ensure we have more time.  This time we will get to ski.

There was only one way to ensure this would happen: stay overnight and make a weekend of it.

I had dreams of a wonderfully relaxed weekend away… and, surprisingly, it was… well, mostly!

Friday Fun Day

As we are an incredibly unorganised bunch we decided that there was really no need to pack the night before we went away.  Why would we?  After all, it wouldn’t take long would it?

Inevitably, the same thing happened that always happens.  The boys slept terribly the night before.  We were tired.  We were grumpy.  We really didn’t feel like packing.  The result of which was it took hours to pack, get the kids sorted and get the car packed.  HOURS!

You really would think we had learnt our lesson by now.  We go away fairly regularly to visit family and friends so we really should have this down to a fine art.  Alas no.

By lunchtime, we were on our way and dreams of getting a few hours skiing in were quickly squashed as we realised we were going to arrive far too late.

So straight to dinner it was.  We decided to get the bus into town. There is a bus stop just down the road the guy in the hotel said. Not far he said.  Technically he was right, it wasn’t far.  It was, however, a complete mission in deep snow and with two three-year-olds.

Eventually, we were whizzing our way into town and the boys were screaming in delight at being on a bus.

We found a little local restaurant; the food was lovely but the boys had had enough.  Too much travelling and not enough sleep makes for two very grumpy boys.  Not even iPad bribery did the trick.

On the way home, we introduced the boys to another first.  With some food in their belly they suddenly had their second (or was it their third, I am not sure) wind and we started a snow-ball fight.  It was so much fun to watch the boys shreak with laughter and it is definitely up there with some of my fondest memories.  I was not so sure about them all ganging up on me though!

The boys loved their first snowball fight.  This picture shows a snowy winter wonderland, with the boys practising their skills

Snowball-fight-tastic

Daddy and Bob L gang up on mummy at a snowball fight

Ganging up on mummy!

We were staying in a hotel, by which I mean all four of us were in the same room.  In terms of parenting holiday, this is NOT the dream as it means you all go to sleep at early o’clock.  Still I guess we needed energy for the next day.

Saturday – the big winter ski day

The next day we took to the slopes.  We were there for ten.  You heard me right: ten.  Unheard of.  We finally got parked in the car park we always wished we could park in.  We got everyone dressed in their ski gear and made our way to the learning area.  The boys were excited, all three of them.  Bob L and Bob D had a discussion on the way to the slopes about how much they like skiing because it means MacDonald’s for lunch.  Memories like elephants those two!

So this is the part that will surprise you: we actually managed to get the boys strapped into their skis and both had a shot of going down the slope in between daddy’s legs.

Bob D went down the slopes twice.  When asked if he wanted to do it again, he simply said: “No thanks, I am fine.  I went skiing and ready for MacDonald’s now”.

Bob L, on the other hand, decided skiing was definitely for him and gate crashed the ski school.  He was under the fence and into the ski area before we knew where we were.  It meant a rather undignified me scrambling over the fence to fetch him.  Muttering my embarrassments as Bob L shotued “L want ski school, ski school, PLLLEEASSSEEEEE”.

We thought that seeing as he was showing such enthusiasm we should look into lessons but we were told he had to be four.  Bob L was crushed that he was sixth-months too young to join in the fun.  He wasn’t buying it when we tried to say he could do it next year, as that is “ages away”!

All things considered though, I am going to go so far as to say that this day was a relative success.  We went on a skiing holiday and made it skiing.  About chuffing time!

Bob D about to go whizzing down the slopes with Daddy

No stopping them now! They have the skiing bug!

Sunday Winter Snowboard Day

We were super lucky that on the Sunday there were snowboarding championships happening nearby.

We decided to go and check it out and it was pretty amazing to see the pros at work.

The boys were pretty unimpressed though; it was cold, with a lot of standing around and they couldn’t see much as everything was happening so far away.

At this stage, we decided to call it day.  We had already checked out our hotel and thought we should just head home.  Quit while we were ahead.

Want to know more about the background to this post?  Check out Winter Wonderland Part 1 and Part 2

Have you been skiing with little ones before?  How was it?  How did you overcome the challenges?  At what age did you start them at ski school?
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Voice (V)

Voice (V)

Have You Found Your Voice?

Finding my voiceBy this, I don’t mean can you open your mouth and talk.  I mean have you found you blogging voice?

I ask this question because I am coming to the end of the A to Z Blogging Challenge and I don’t know what direction to take this blog in.

This will sound very cliche: the challenges have changed me.  Well, maybe not me exactly, but the blogging me.  I have found that I have a voice, a different voice to the one I thought I had.  Not sure if that makes sense?

I am at a crossroads and these are my thoughts.

Topics/Niche

I am going to admit now: I fear the end of the challenge, being left to my own devices without a prompt.  What will I write about?

Before I started this challenge, I aimed to submit a blog post three times a week.  One post based on my Instagram snaps for the week.  One post on parenting.  One post on my pregnancy story.

I will be honest, I don’t think the Instagram post worked for me.  I also really like doing my monthly top ten post, so feel that an additional weekly post is ‘over egging the pudding’ so to speak.

Parenting posts.  So much material here.  The monkeys are always up to something.  They make me laugh (and sometimes cry!) daily and I love to share that with you.

I will continue my pregnancy story.  This is important to me and there is so much more to say on this topic.  I needed a break from this previously and I am more than ready to pick this up again.  There may even be some guest posts snuck in their from my nearest and dearest.  Their memories are very different from mine.  Their memories are clearer.

Here is the thing.  The posts I have most enjoyed doing from the challenges are the ones that don’t fit into any of these three niches.  My top three from the challenges are:

I pick these because I enjoyed writing them, both for cathartic reasons and because I was proud of the outcome.  I would love to do more posts like these.  I am guessing, though, I need to wait until inspiration hits.  Let’s hope it does!

One new series I will be doing is the Parenting Scoop.  I have been speaking to other bloggers and finding out about their pregnancy journey.  I will start to share these fascinating stories with you from May.

When to Post?

A blog post a day isn’t something I can keep up for a long period of time.  I work, have kids, a hubby, a very untidy house….  Any parenting blogger can relate, I am sure.

So what is the optimum amount of posts? I am going to be honest, I have no idea!Planning what to do with my voice!

I think I would rather concentrate on 2 or 3 good posts a week.

So there you have it, I am currently trying to decide the direction to take.

Please let me know in the comments what you would like to read going forward.
Are you a blogger?  How often do you blog and why?  Do you stick to a niche?

V

 

 

 

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University (U)

University (U)

University.  It Is A Huge Step, Isn’t It?  

University LibraryUnless you are steadfast in your career choice, it be can hard to pick a course.  How do you decide at that age what career you want to do?

Most teenagers are still living at home, not even finished school when they have to make this choice. There experience of the world is limited.  If, like me, you didn’t have just one dream about what you want to be, making that choice can be difficult.

If I could do university again I would do it differently.  

Essentially, I went to university as I felt like it was a natural next step.  The majority of my classmates were going to university.  I wanted the experience.  But I really didn’t know what I wanted to do.

Well, that isn’t strictly true.  I loved the idea of working with children.  To be a teacher.

The school career adviser suggested otherwise.  “It’s not for you”, she said.  I listened.  I shouldn’t have.  I regret it.  Since, many people have suggested that this would have been a perfect career for me.

Confidence

The thing is, at 17, this advice was enough to knock my confidence.  I believed her because I thought she was the ‘expert’.  In reality, I had met the career adviser only a handful of times.

I was good at English at school.  I always enjoyed writing, mainly diaries.  All hand-written, of course; this was the ’90s.  Years later, I re-read those diaries.  They make me cringe.  Cringe at my former self and wonder what on earth I was thinking.  It was an accurate reflection of the girl at that time, though.  On reflection, however, I realise there is really no need to cringe about the naivety of youth.  I am not sure why I didn’t consider undertaking a course in journalism  at university.

With no idea about the path I wanted to take, I decided to do Business Studies.  Not because of some burning desire or passion for this subject, but simply because I didn’t know what I wanted to do.  I am not knocking the course; it certainly gave me good foundations for life in various subjects.  It didn’t lead to a dream job.  Although, I would be interested to know how many people go to university and end up with a dream job at the end.  I am guessing not many.

I am thankful that I love my current job.  I had a bit of a lucky break.  I was ready to join the working mothers’ club and secured a job writing and editing at a local newspaper.  I love it.

I have also discovered the world of blogging.  Again, more writing.  If only I had known 20 years ago this would make me happy.

The question of what course to pick at university can be hard

This is just my experience, but it does beg the question is 17 too young to decide the university course that could dictate your career for the rest of your life?  I do feel that if I had been a few years older I would have been better placed to make a decision.

What about starting with a more general course, then deciding your niche later.  Would that be better?

Tell me in the comments about your experience.  Did you go to university?  Did you know what you wanted to do when you left school?  Did it set you up for working life?  Did you land your dream job?

Like This Post?  Then Check Out “Leaving Home”

 

 

 

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Quiet Hours in Germany (Q)

Quiet Hours in Germany (Q)

Quiet hours in Germany has taken a bit of getting used to.

When we realised that there was an opportunity in to move to Germany, we naturally turned to the oracle (Google) to find out more about the country.

One thing we read over and over was that Germany has quiet hours.  We were naturally very concerned.  Our monkeys are not quiet.  Ever.  Unless asleep, but even then…

So what did the quiet hours mean?

Quiet Please Sign
At certain times of the day (over lunchtime for example), Sundays and bank holiday it is frowned upon to make excessive noise. So no cutting the grass or having your music on loudly.
So what does in mean in practice.  One thing it meant was that there was no noise while the boys had a lunchtime nap.  Nothing to wake them from their much needed slumber.  I really appreciated this when the boys were small.
It forces your hand to have family time on a Sunday, which I have to admit is partly to do with the shops being closed too.  I have lost count of the amount of times on a Sunday we have just nipped to B&Q, cut the grass and before you know it the day has gone!
That said I have come to realise that it is not as strict as I had read. People do realise you have small children and that they will make noise – which is great seeing as the monkeys don’t nap any more and usually can be found out in the garden playing at this time.
The other thing that I have noticed is that I have changed.  Last weekend we went back to the UK and I felt very strange about the shops being open and having the opportunity to do what you want.  The thought of going to Tesco felt like forbidden fruit.
I am sure when we move back to the UK permanently it won’t take long for me to readjust.
Tell me in the comments about where you live.  Do you have any laws like this where you live?

 

shhh, be quiet
Q
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