The adventures of Jack Jack

The adventures of a first time Mummy and my son Jack.

Archive for the tag “Country kids”

Release the stress this Christmas with fun at the fair.

With all the trouble and strife happening in our lives at the moment, festivities haven’t really been thought about.

Daddy works four days a week and stays at his parents house to save on petrol, so our time together as a family is precious. So when we saw that the local Christmas fair was in town on one of Daddy’s days off, we jumped at the chance to let away worries float away for some good old fashioned family fun.

We told Jack we were going to see Santa and all the way into town he sat in the back of the car chanting “Santa, Santa!”.

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That was of course until we had parked up, queued for 20 minutes and paid our donation to the Rutland fire service, then came the tears and “Mummy don’t leave me” (even though we all went to see Santa together). Still I guess this years picture with Santa is an improvement on last years.

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 Grumpy Christmas photo 2013.

 After his terrifying experience with Saint Nick, the very next thing Jack saw lifted his mood straight away, a merry go round with a big shiny red car. Jack has never been able to go on any rides as he has always been to small for the ones at Grantham’s fun fair, but this time he was a perfect fit.

Naturally he chose the shiny red sports car over the bus, taxi’s and strangely ducks (a man of taste in my book) and with Mummy crouched beside him off we went, brum brum!!
Now from my point of view it was a pretty boring 5 minutes of going round and round and trying to look excited as we raced past Daddy for the 17th time, but for little Jack it was heaven. He whooped and zoomed and beeped the horn, and the smile on his face was a picture.

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As you can imagine he took a little coaxing to climb off and explore the rest of the fair but soon he realised it wasn’t the only ride there.

Soon J was zooming down the helter skelter, once with Mummy and then with Daddy, scanning all the goodies on the stalls and enjoying freshly baked cakes with gingerbread latte.

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A little further up was a shooting game, you know the sort ‘knock all the targets down to win a prize’. Usually we walk straight past but Jack spotted the Spider man stuffed toy they had and that was that.

“Daddy, Daddy, Spider man!!”

Spider man cost 10 tickets so that meant Daddy had to have 2 goes and hit every single target, the challenge was on.
With Jack and I cheering him on Daddy hit the first 5 targets without a single miss, on his second turn a crowd was starting to form with Jack reminding them all,

“That’s my Daddy!”

5 more targets down and one happy boy clutching his brand new Spider man stuffy, Daddy was most certainly the hero of the day.

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Next we rode the Disney express and Spider man and Brewer were treated to their own seats while we chugged round and round. We were lucky enough to sit right at the front, so Jack was able to ‘drive’.

By now all this excitement and new experiences had left us all a little hungry and J quite tired, so off we went in search of some food. Jack and I shared a hot dog and Daddy had a massive burger, they had reindeer burgers but it just didn’t feel right eating Rudolf in front of now very festive toddler.

At every 10 minute interval we would pass stands selling light up swords and light sabres but one set up next to the burger stand caught Jacks eye, a stand selling a light up Mickey mouse, fibre optic, noise making object that cost 5 whole pounds! Naturally she sold it the moment she handed it to him when she noticed him staring, clever move lady.

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With our pockets feeling considerably lighter and a very tired boy we set off back to the car, with a small break to dance with a giant Brewer we found.

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As we trudged back past Santa, we noticed that he had now been joined by some real life reindeer, which captivated J. Having just given Jack a few lessons in Christmas 101 (Who is Santa, what does he do and who are his reindeer), he looked the reindeer straight in the eye and said “Hello Blitzen!”
Cue many awww’s and adoring looks from the crowd surrounding the reindeer.

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Back home we had to peel a sleeping toddler out of his car seat and straight into his pyjamas and up to bed, not forgetting spider man of course.

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I suppose this post is just a small reminder that no matter how stressful life may be, try to make some family time, believe me its worth it.magicmoments150x150_zps58f60c40 PODcast-WhatsthestorybadgeFINAL125x125_zpsb1967f96 LoudnProudButton2_zps0ae1c4ea kidslinkbadgesmall_zps05dc13fb

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Making memories at RAF Coningsby

Jack, Daddy and I are big fans of The Battle of Britain aircraft (Spitfires, Hurricanes and Lancaster bombers) and are lucky enough to live just down the road from RAF Coningsby  where the Battle of Britain memorial flight is based.

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This year is very special in the RAF world as the only two flying Lancaster bombers are flying together for the 1st time in over 60 years. A Canadian Lanc called ‘Vera’ has joined our Lanc called ‘Thumper’ for the 2Lancs tour, flying at displays and events around the country .

There is another Lancaster at East Kirkby called  ‘Just Jane’, which unfortunately does not have its airworthy certificate but does taxi along the runway. Through The Battle of Britain memorial flight facebook page I learnt that ‘Vera’ and ‘Thumper’ were flying over ‘Just Jane’ while she taxied along the runway and that it would only happen on two different days (2nd and 7th of September), a once in a lifetime sight.

Daddy and I decided that with Jacks nursery taster session on the morning of the 3rd it would be better to aim for Sunday 7th of September, and it was lucky that we did as the fly over on the 2nd was cancelled while ‘Vera’ had an engine replaced.

It wasn’t until that cancellation that I learnt the events were ticket only to see all 3 Lancs and both events were sold out, however the two airworthy Lancasters would be returning to base at RAF Coningsby shortly after and they have a viewing car park that allows you to watch aircraft take off and land. As a bonus RAF Coningsby is slightly closer than East Kirkby, a plus when you get travel sick and have a restless 2 year old in the car.

When Sunday afternoon came round the three of us packed a few snacks for the journey and my Ipad and camera (to take as many pictures as possible) and set off for the 40 minute journey. When we got there the car park was overflowing and people were parking on the embankment along the side of the road, luckily we found a space and once parked got a good spot at the fence.

Jack not really knowing what we were waiting for started to get restless and this is where the snacks came in handy. Munching away happily he stood by my side while Daddy, I and everyone around us scanned the skies and tried to listen for the sound of eight roaring Merlin engines over the noise of the passing traffic.

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A man standing next to me nudged my arm and pointed at a hangar across the airfield, telling me

“there they are”

Now I have 20/20 vision but do have trouble picking out details on light backgrounds such as the bright blue sky that day. I couldn’t see a thing and was getting more and more frustrated as the excited muttering around me grew and even Daddy said

“I can see them, their over there”

Where!!! I can’t see them.

It was at that point we heard the faint growl of the engines and even Jack piped up

“Airpane!!”

Ah right THERE they are, I see them now.

I took tight hold of the reins I had on Jack, knowing full well he would try to charge off in the direction of the aircraft and selected the camera option on my shiny new Ipad while Daddy was on camera duty.

We couldnt have picked a better spot at the fence as they flew a lap of the base, right over our heads!

With Jack mesmerised by the sight while Daddy and I frantically took as many pictures as we could, hoping they wouldn’t be blurry.DSCN056610416608_10204335592648300_6535720476400245575_n10612720_10204335592608299_5487290964862894593_nDSCN0577

 

Within a few minutes both ‘Vera’ and ‘Thumper’ had landed and J lost interest again, until Daddy put him on his shoulders for a better view.

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That afternoons excitement caught up with J on the journey home as he nodded off, Brewer the bear in hand of course.

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I am very privileged to have seen the once in a lifetime sight of the last two flying Lancasters and Jack has been telling me about it ever since.DSCN0588

Have you experienced a once in a lifetime sight?

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My future meet our past

Last Sunday Jack went for a sleepover at his Nanny’s and what an adventure he had.

While we were enjoying hot cups of tea and scrummy egg and bacon butties he filled his days playing with his cousins in the garden and going out with his Grandad.

Unfortunately it chucked it down for the whole of Monday but my Mother in law tells me Jack wasnt fazed, and spent all day shadowing his cousins and insisting they watch Peppa pig with him, over and over.

By Tuesday the weather was slightly better and Nanny took all four boys swimming. Jack loves water but he doesn’t like getting changed into his swimming trunks or getting out the get dry, this time however he threw a fit because he couldn’t follow his cousins into the boys changing room. Instead he had to follow Nanny into the girls and continued to scream the place down until he was dry and dressed and back with his cousins.

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After a quick lunch to refuel the 4 of them were off the aviation heritage centre in East Kirkby, Lincolnshire with Grandad. East Kirkby is the home of a Lancaster called Just Jane, as well as many other aircraft and vehicles. There is also a visitors centre where you can buy a taxi ride up the runway in Just Jane and learn more about her as well as a memorial chapel to remember the fallen.

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I have to say I am slightly jealous as I have always had a fascination with the battle of Britain aircraft, mainly the Lancaster and this year marks the 1st time in 50 years since 2 Lancasters have flown together. Thumper from RAF Coningsby (part of the battle of Britain memorial flight) and the only other flying Lanc in the world, a Canadian Lanc called Vera. Just Jane doesn’t have her airworthy certificate but still sends shivers down your spine when she taxi’s down the runway.

As this year marks the centenary of the first world war, I believe it is incredibly important to teach the next generation about the sacrifices made so they never have to live through those sort of horrors.

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Jack certainly got a taste of history during his visit, seeing not only Just Jane but also a Dakota which is a Normandy (D-Day) and Arnhem (Market garden) veteran having flown in the conflicts, as well as other vehicles.

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We spent our Tuesday taking a lazy wander around Boundary mill, enjoying having all the time in the world rather than trying to juggle 100 different things. We looked in the toy section for dinosaurs (J’s new obsession) but at £15 for a hand sized toy they were certainly too expensive for my tight budget. Every time we got to Boundary mill I have to pop in the garden centre to look at the tiger oscars.

I used to have one who we rescued from a dirty disgusting tank and nursed back from the brink of death. I named her Luna, short for Lunatic because she attacked everyone else but me, she even tried to savage a workman who was plugging something into the extension lead near her tank. She had fin rot and worms when she came to me and after a lot of hard work she returned to full health and full naughtiness but always had a soft spot for me and would nudge my hand until I stroked her.

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I had to stop myself taking all the baby oscars home but luckily I had my hubby with me to keep me grounded, if not I’d have a house full of fish by now. While in the garden centre we spotted a stand full of RAF battle of Britain merchandise and to my delight they had a pocket notebook with a Lanc on the front (coincidentally the aircraft J was looking at around the same time), perfect for all my blogging notes.

On Wednesday my baby was home and within 20 minutes of being back had already asked for his favourite snack (apple and cheese) and when I gave it to him he said “thank you, love you”
Then he saw me cleaning the floor, asked for the mop and started mopping for me.

The rest of our week was spent playing indoors away from the rain and cold wind. We played airplanes (and Mummy didn’t duck in time, ouch), read stories and used his mega blocks to build the tallest tower we could.

Today we’re off to my mums for Sunday lunch along with my Brother, sister in law and 2 little nephews. A busy, excitable, scrummy way to finish off a fun packed week for J.

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Its time for an adventure…..

Feeling pressured and lacking enthusiasm it was definitely time for a break and an adventure.

Jack had never been to the seaside so we decided on a weekend trip to Great Yarmouth. My mum joined us for the trip and on the morning of the 4th we were off. I slept most of the journey as I get car sick but Jack was quite happy listening to his Thomas the tank engine story cd and cuddling his bear Brewer. Once we arrived and checked into the b&b we didn’t know where to go first, but as it was a gorgeous day we decided to hit the beach but first we had to buy Jack a bucket and spade.

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Once we let little legs loose he was off with Daddy hot on his tail. Stupidly I decided to push the pram down to beach to follow the action forgetting the wheels would sink into the sand, I ended up dragging it behind me but it saved me becoming buckaroo.

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Jack didn’t know what to do first, he kicked and stamped in the sand for a while then grabbed a handful and threw it into the wind. I am very surprised he didn’t try to eat it once but I think the rest of his senses were working so hard he was in overload. To begin with he didn’t quite understand what to do with his bucket and spade and just wandered around holding them, until Grandma showed him how to shovel sand into the bucket. Once he had gotten the hang of it there was no stopping him and he spent a while just filling and emptying the bucket.

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We enjoyed a bag of chips on the pier, while Jack enjoyed his Mighty 4 pouches from Plum and Goodies new croc snacks, as well as the odd sneaky chip. Jack spied a “choo choo” ride so had to have a go.

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Sea world had kindly given me tickets to review their attraction so we decided to head down to the centre. I was very impressed with how little of a wait we had to get in considering it was a gorgeous day and a saturday. Jack was amazed by all the different kinds of fish and was especially fond of the sharks as we walked through the tunnel. I myself was mesmerized by the sea turtle as it cruised gracefully around the tank. We found Dory and Nemo and Jack stroked a crab then decided to lick his hands, ewww.

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We spent a while just watching the occupants of the various tanks until little man started to become restless and moan he was tired, we decided headed back to the hotel room so he could have forty winks in something more comfortable than the buggy. Secretly I was glad of catching a little snooze myself and emptying my shoes of sand and even Daddy was struggling to stay awake. After some warm milk and a couple of stories from his new TipTop books Jack was soon fast asleep.

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A while later we were all starving and Grandma offered to buy us dinner so we headed off in search of a restaurant and had only turned the corner when we found the perfect one. There were only two other families enjoying their meals so it was a nice relaxing end to the day, until Jack arrived of course. Daddy and I had steak and chips while Grandma had steak chasseur, Jack loves spaghetti so had a lovely big bowl of it with plenty of cheese. He is at the age where he wants to feed himself so I let him, within reason but I hadn’t bargained on him getting a little cheese happy. Luckily the waitress was too busy cooing over him to notice by which time he had finished the cheese hunt and tidied up after my little monkey.

What better after a big meal then a wander on the beach in the moonlight and hitting the arcades. We took all the 2p and 1p’s we had laying around the house and Jack had saved a few pounds from being helpful for Mummy. Soon we had won him a few little cars and plenty of tickets which we used on the play-doh pack they had.

The next morning its was chucking it down with rain so we decided to buy a few souvenirs and head home, halfway home my mum told me about a project she had started for work and how she needed my help to set up her own blog. After a little rejigging of the luggage when we got home Jack and I were on our way to Grandma’s house for the week. Daddy couldnt join us as he had a few meetings to go to but a little of your own space never hurt anyone.

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Jack and I spent the week helping Grandma in the garden and the evenings trying to explain blogging and Jack ‘helping’ design Grandma’s blog badge. We went for walks down the lane to the farm at the end, we played tag  and relaxed in the sun.

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Back home a week later we took advantage of the good weather with a trip to the park and getting Daddy involved in the fun.

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We spent Easter weekend at Nanny’s house for a roast and an alternative Easter basket. The planned egg hunt had to be held indoors due to the rain but didn’t stop the fun. When we came home Jack had his first haircut, we had tried many times before but failing duct taping his head to the chair we couldn’t get him to stay still. However with his brand new Tractor Ted dvd he was so engrossed we managed to chop off his curls.

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During the week that followed I discovered to my horror the amount of weeds taking over my garden, so with my little helper in tow we got to work. Daddy cut the grass while I tackled the weeds, Jack emptied bucketfuls on the compost and bought the bucket back for me to fill up again. Occasionally he did disappear to the front gate to watch the cars on the road or to fuss next doors cat but had great fun putting food out for the birds once we had finished.

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After such a busy but relaxing break from the stresses of blogging and admin duties we topped it off with a bank holiday bbq, again at Nanny’s house. Jack enjoyed playing football with his cousins, Brewer the bear in tow and chasing bubbles around the garden.

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Concentration :)

Concentration 🙂

 

Jack you are learning so much everyday and it makes me extremely proud to watch you grow. To hear you repeat a brand new word when I speak to you or to watch you playing football reminds me of just how far you have come in just under two years of life. You make me the happiest mother in the world every time you call my name, keep learning about the world and you will go far but please dont forget to be my little boy for just a little longer.

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