On Monday Eloise caught up on her final Gymboree session, she is now up to date. Eloise, Lachlan and Sophie were happy to be attending Monday’s session because Juju was there. It was a little later in the day, late enough for Eloise to swing by Home Bargains and pick up a new sun hat and then have a pre-Gymboree treat with Juju.
Eloise then had to rush home to make sure all her babies were behaving.
A couple of weeks ago our washing machine caught on fire which was not ideal. They are finally replacing it next week but we have been struggling a wee bit in the clothes department, especially Lachnado who tends to eat dinner served off of his chest. Tuesday afternoon was to Juju’s house for a playdate and two loads of washing to get us through the week.
When they got home Lachnado discovered Vegemite.
By Tuesday “a family’s “uniquely Glasgow” gesture of support for the people Ukraine [had] become a huge online hit after they placed a blue and yellow cone on the famous Duke of Wellington statue” last Sunday.
On Wednesday, Lachnado was helping out with his favourite toy. It does not help that Eloise is a wee scared of the vacuum cleaner noise.
Thursday morning, was back to Gymboree, Eloise was fairly quiet this session. Afterwards, we started to head home for a rest, but Eloise suddenly became alive, grabbed her friends’ hands and sprinted off to coffee and cakes. Perhaps five Gymboree sessions in the past three weeks are pushing it, even though they are still pizza-themed.
After meeting Dad at the shops in the afternoon it was then time to wrap up Juju’s birthday presents, which Eloise was very excited that she chose. She had also added a number of items to her list for Grandma, “Mum, look, on my list”, a common saying heard throughout ASDA. Eloise is still a wee sad that Becca will not make it over in time for her birthday.
Friday was a big day for all. Eloise and Foxie started with their feet up on the couch leaving no room for Mum.
After getting them all dressed, which could be a blog post of its own sometimes, we were off to Juju’s third birthday party at Edenmill . Thank you for the photos Jo.
Eloise and Lachlan had such a great time at Juju’s party, so did Super Mum. Eloise ran off with her friends and did not appear for a long time in the world of soft play. Eloise was looking sleepy in the car on the ride home but was fighting to stay awake. She was so excited about her party bag and had to show Dad. Unfortunately Mum had told her she did not need to share her party bag with Dad, but Eloise was nice and threw a few smarties his way. In the afternoon the Mum’s were sharing photos of all their girls fast asleep. Eloise missed that memo and went straight to the “PG”.
In the spirit of trying new things, Liam was off to his first Bearsden ‘try curling‘ session. Unfortunately, he did not bring his curling attire from Australia, so had to make do with his flightline pants and golf jumper. The least flexible man in the world was concerned about how a deep lunge would go wearing jeans. Before he left, Liam watched a series of YouTube videos to make sure he was sufficiently confused about limb angles. Sadly the Braehead Curling Rink has closed due to COVID-19, so it was almost an hour’s drive across town in peak hour traffic to get to Greenacres Curling Rink, where he arrived full of excitement and with a can-do attitude. On a side note, he was impressed there was a curling emoji 🥌.
Living in Scotland this was definitely an activity to tick off the experience list. When he arrived he was glad it was not BYO brush.
The curling noobs carefully walked out onto the ice rink for the first time and we could not believe how much traction we had, it almost did not feel slippery, my senses were not adding up. “A key part of the preparation of the playing surface is the spraying of water droplets onto the ice, which form pebbles on freezing”. Once we were all comfortable walking, jogging and sliding on the ice we discussed some safety aspects. This included yelling “ICE!!!” golf’s equivalent of “FORE!!!” (yelled that a few times in my life). It was then lesson one in sweeping and delivery techniques. Thanks to Eloise and Lachlan I know my way around a broom, it was time to sweep like I have never swept before while traversing sideways on ice.
There is an interesting physics phenomenon involved with how curling stones curl. With a clockwise curling delivery, curling to the right. Not to be mistaken with a spinning ball curling through the air. “Physicists Still Don’t Know What Puts the Curl in Curling”.
It was nice to meet some new Glaswegians and talk to some passionate curlers. Plus the sport itself was fun and possibly the strangest thing I have done. There was a family area overlooking the ice rink I will have to bring the family next time.
In a nutshell, I would describe curling as a complex form of lawn bowls aka Aussie curling. Funnily enough, it was not the ice or the sliding that was the tricky part, it was delivering the curling stone while moving that had the learning curve. Like delivering a lawn bowl on the run would be trickier. You have to push off the hack (like a sprinters starting block), slide, take a rain check on how fast and far you were actually sliding then deliver at the appropriate speed. Curling stones are not biased the same way that lawn bowls are and rely on pure witchcraft to curl. The advantage of curling compared to lawn bowls is that in both sports although a long shot will always end up long, and no good, in curling a short shot can be assisted with the dark art of sweeping to increase the length of the delivery, whereas in lawn bowls it will just stop short. This provided a margin of error on the ice rink which had a surprisingly high amount of friction.
Curling is a sport in which players slide stones on a sheet of ice toward a target area which is segmented into four concentric circles… Evidence that curling existed in Scotland in the early 16th century includes a curling stone inscribed with the date 1511 found (along with another bearing the date 1551) when an old pond was drained at Dunblane, Scotland. The world’s oldest curling stone and the world’s oldest football are now kept in the same museum (the Stirling Smith Art Gallery and Museum) in Stirling…The granite for the stones comes from two sources: Ailsa Craig, an island off the Ayrshire coast of Scotland, and the Trefor Granite Quarry in Wales.
While Dad was enjoying his first curling session, Eloise kept saying “Mum, is Dad at netball?” and was a wee confused. Lachlan continued being a turkey.
We know the main reason you all read this blog and endure our jokes is to stay up to date with the latest tartan news. There were a couple of developments this week. On Friday, in support of Ukraine, “Scots fashion firm launches ‘Ukraine Forever’ tartan as symbol of ‘alliance and defiance'”. Nice one!
A bit closer to ‘home’ the “Scottish Register of Tartans says ‘aye’ to Perth-designed Spirit of Australia tartan… It has red, which represents the red dirt of Australia, the gold represents the minerals, the white represents the white beaches around Australia… The blue water and then grey, which is the necessary rain that we receive”.
For those still counting, Friday was also the day that “Covid in Scotland: Virus infection levels hit new record high… Almost 300,000 people in Scotland had Covid last week, according to Office for National Statistics estimates… However, experts say that due to vaccinations and treatments, numbers in intensive care are very low… It is now two years since the World Health Organization declared a global pandemic, 10 days after the first Covid case was confirmed in Scotland”.
Saturday morning was a slow start to the day as Lachlan had to fix Eloise’s bike. Once he had finished it was off to the park.
After running, jumping, climbing and most importantly serving imaginary ice creams on the playground, Eloise was suddenly sad as she had forgotten her football. A couple of fields over we noticed an amateur match and thought we would go investigate. Eloise was on the hunt for a football.
All this running around was hard work so we headed home for some more baking.
This morning we went chasing the blue patches in the sky and ended up at Dean Castle and Country Park.
When we arrived at the magical Dean Country Park we were greeted by deer. The Koala moved in for a closer inspection
The sun was providing a bit of warmth as we walked, skipped, carried and rolled our way to Dean Castle. The only problem was that Dean Castle was closed as it was being restored. Bugger, we will have to come back another time.
It was beautiful making our way through Dean Country Park. The Koala was having a great time on the boardwalk until we got around the corner and it was being guarded by some nasty geese who seemed like they were looking for trouble. Lachlan was a wee unsure, but luckily Dad courageously used Eloise as a battering ram and we were through the gaggle** of geese.
** Fensoms in kilts useless fact #128403: “Geese have many different collective nouns, which change depending on where they are. For example, when on the ground or in the water, they are often referred to as a gaggle of geese. In flight, a group of geese is called a skein, team or wedge. On the water or flying close together, a wedge of geese. The most generic term that can apply to geese anywhere is a flock”.
This morning, for whatever reason, Eloise was very vocal about wanting to visit a small playground, she specifically made sure it was not a big playground. Big playgrounds were not on her itinerary today.
Eloise “Mum, today me go to smalllll playground, me like small playgrounds”
Super Mum (while doing 23 other things) “okay Eloise”
Dad “What about the sand playground around the corner“
Eloise “NOOO, me want small playground”
Dad “But you love the sand there”
Eloise “NOOO, small, needs to be small playground, no big playground”
Super Mum (while doing 57 other things) “yes Eloise”
Funnily enough, there just happened to be the perfect small playground. Lachnado even got in on the action.
After Eloise and Lachlan were bored-walked we headed into the large town of Kilmarnock for lunch. We made our way past the most yellow building we have ever seen until we saw a menu that ticked the right boxes at Goldberry Bar & Kitchen.
After a nice lunch, we wandered down King Street, Kilmarnock’s wee Rundle Mall, before heading home so the babies could wash their babies.