So the last week has been rather crazy. We have been in limbo for a while now, waiting to move, waiting for Jessica's birthday, waiting for Cub Camp, waiting for Disneyland, and now suddenly they are all upon us.
Jessica had a fabulous birthday party, with much help from Julie, Rachel and my Mum. Toby happily played whilst it was all set up, wanted feeding 10 minutes before it started, sat with my Mum for the whole afternoon and wanted feeding just after it finished - perfect baby or what?? All of the children were lovely and it was a fun and thoroughly enjoyed by all afternoon. I can't post any pictures as they all have other people's children on, and I know for a fact that three of the children there can't have their pictures on the internet and wouldn't dream of putting the other children on without their parent's permission anyway. But I can share a picture of the Treasure Map Cake I did at the last minute when Jessica suddenly decided two days before her party that she would quite like one of those.
We had telescope making, dancing, Pirate Pete says, dancing, musical bumps, dancing, Guess where the X should go on the map, dancing, colouring sheets, dancing, pass the parcel, dancing, a crazy 5 minute "CANNONBALL FIGHT!!!" with plastic ball pool balls and side-turned tables complete with table-cloth covered legs for good old fashioned health & safety (rather than just banning it outright like all these politically correct people would have you do these days :P) and then a "WALK THE PLANK!!!" to the food tables with cannonball cheese crisps + grapes, cheese on swords, jelly boats and pirate topped buns amongst other yummy offerings. The party bags were given out simply containing chocolate coins, freaky fish, a "Pirate ............'s Room" colouring sheet (free printable online) and a sheet of pirate stickers, and many thankyous were said by all. It was a fantastic party to say that a good amount of the children were only just 3 or under and I was really impressed.
So now on to the next happening which is Cub Camp, Adam took all his bed kit tonight and made his bed roll, luckily I had remembered to sew his Diamond Jubilee badge onto his camp blanket so I am in the good books. The rest of his kit needs packing up tomorrow, fingers crossed James is picking up his new walking boots from the sorting office tomorrow and we have everything he needs. He comes back at lunchtime on Monday and we are setting off at lunchtime on Tuesday so a quick laundry turn-around, possibly borrowing Nana's dryer, may be needed on Monday afternoon!! Although if he is the same as he was on Big Camp last year he will come home with a bag full of clean clothes, wearing his thermals and the same set of clothes he went in because "you have to get up early for breakfast and it was too cold to keep getting changed". So, uhm, a bath/shower at Nana's may be needed Monday afternoon actually, if we have to be all sat in the same car for hours on Tuesday afternoon.......
Talking not-so-good odours, we have car sickness tablets and sea-bands for Jessica to try out, and I am just about to search google for trips on what to pack for kids with a tendency to throw up on car journeys. Wish us luck!! I am also creating some travel activity bags for the kids, using and adapting some fab activity ideas I have found on pinterest. I got 2 velcro pads with attached ball (put away for future use) for only £1.69 today and created a figure play set each, and with amazing timing my Aunty got Jessica some magnets with a two-sided magnetic play scene so we have taken all of her magnets off the fridge and created another activity set for her.
I have bought some dry eraser 'crayons' by Crayola that need no caps, some lollipop sticks, and will be working on a few ideas I have up my sleeve over the next few days.
So we are food listing, packing listing and car journey listing tonight, with a good sprinkling of tidying and getting everything ready for the morning so I can hopefully repeat last Thursday's success in getting all three children out of the house and Adam at school on time. Then in the afternoon it is time for new Jessica car seat shopping, looking for something that is relatively simple to clean in the likely event of it being covered in sick, oh joy. We will be mostly shopping and packing over the next few days, ready for our exciting trip to Disneyland Paris yippee!!! Then when we get back, only 2 weeks until move date so the packing can begin in earnest, double yippee!!
I am feeling a lot more positive, although having many meltdowns in the midst of all this as this house is just far too crowded and small things become big things in that kind of situation for all of us, except Toby who remains happy and chilled regardless, bless his little soul. I am sure, somehow, he has been sent to restore peace to our little family unit. He is definitely here for a reason.