Sunday, 29 April 2012

chocolate brownie cafe

when we moved from our mansion to our bungalow, i excitedly told the children how from our new house, we would be able to walk to school (instead of having to get in the car) and to the 'chocolate brownie cafe' (a spanish tapas bar that happens to sell scrumptious chocolate brownies). the latter totally convinced them. the house move was the best thing that had ever happened to them in their lives. this morning, the kids crawled into bed with me. feeling slightly guilty about my record unpacking expedition yesterday, i told them i wanted to create a really lovely day with them and asked what they would like to do. 'please may we walk to the chocolate brownie cafe?' was the response, in stereo. OK - fair enough, we haven't done that yet. so after a morning of rehearsing on the double bass, guitar & piano - yes, they are going a bit music-mad - in the pouring rain, each under their own umbrella, off we went, singing 'onder moeders paraplu'. arrived at the cafe to find there was live entertainment -what a treat!- in the form of a lady singing 'it might as well be spring' - how appropriate, as i warmed myself on a latte and then another one (still haven't managed to identify my coffee machine in the unpacking!) and the kids devoured their chocolate treats and put in their special requests with the jazz lady. we climbed back up the hill, loudly singing 'the girl from ipanema' alternated with 'hop paardje hop', picked up the sunday papers on the way & then went into town to meet up with our ski holiday friends. only 28 more boxes to go. who cares. i have papers to read.

Sunday, 22 April 2012

76 down, 83 to go

phew. celebrated in style with the girls & sparkling elderflower / wine on friday - must confess not a lot of unpacking got done but celebrating the house move was lovely. luckily, one of the girls returned this morning & helped me break the back of the unpacking while we put the world to rights. the kids were mega excited especially when they were asked to help scrunch up the wrapping paper by stamping it all in boxes (pictures to follow once i have retrieved the necessary equipment from somewhere in the remaining 83 boxes). still haven't identified my coffee machine! eeks. ok - i'm on decaf these days but still. i like my latte in the morning. managed to squeeze in a trip to the theatre with the kids in the afternoon, totally amazing, sorted out eldest's long anticipated pink storage furniture from scandinavia's online store (as i dreaded the thought of going in there myself) and found an orchid kindly delivered from the lady who looked after eldest & youngest from when they were miniscule until we moved west (she's so generous, i'm sure she has made a massive net loss on us by now). unpacking, i retrieved many items from my single days that had been banned to attics or outbuildings - my lovely pear wood dining room table i had to save up for for many months before i could afford it, my tall candle stick i bought on texel when i first went there with her, my frog on a reed and other sculptures that were basically 'lost' in our old mansion but now feature quite prominently in my lounge... ok so i'm not even halfway through the unpacking, the brand new boiler keeps packing up, when i tried to plumb in the dishwasher i discovered the builders forgot to put in the socket for it (there's a loose piece of electric wire dangling in its space....), the spare room is stacked with boxes i do not intend to unpack in this house (books, books, and more books) and i foresee at least one trip to the tip despite my ruthless decluttering expeditions before the move. but already, i couldn't feel more at home. can't wait to put the pictures up! 

Tuesday, 17 April 2012

moving home procrastination

we're moving home tomorrow & thursday. from a massive house with 5 bedrooms, 4 reception rooms and 16 acres to a bungalow about 1/10th the size with a postage-stamp garden. i am looking forward to it. the new house has a nice feel to it, gorgeous views, the kids are mega-excited, and everything is newly painted and lovely.

because of the 'downsizing', as the english call it, i have been decluttering like a madwoman (and nobody signed up for my moving home giveaway, can you believe it??). result: the house is a total bombsite. OK - tons of clothes & toys & furniture have disappeared but does my house look any tidier for it? nope! i have nowhere to sit, so far so good, but the floors are covered with sorting out piles, sorted out piles, and 'also to move' piles. i haven't even started work on the shed yet. still - i collected the keys to the new place this morning & am fairly optimistic i'll find a home for all my stuff.

the removals men are due here at 9 am tomorrow morning. 3 more cupboards to empty & sort as well as the shed. however, behind me, in the fridge a glass of dry white whispers my name & my tummy is rumbling in the knowledge of the fillet steak, salad & skinny french fries that are on the menu... 9am is very late. that gives me at least 2 hours of sorting between grown-ups' waking up time & children's waking up time tomorrow morning. i have a 'flow' subscription to sort out for the new house, a log to post, plans to make...


Monday, 16 April 2012

cycling without stabilisers

by youngest

and eldest...

hmmm!! we'll get there one day...