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Watching parrot at Alton Towers. Merlin Pass for the win…. taken May 12, 2018 @ 12:45
Watching parrot at Alton Towers. Merlin Pass for the win....
Our drinks for first desert course are served interestingly taken May 19, 2018 @ 20:48
Our drinks for first desert course are served interestingly
5 years ago we said a final goodbye to Ricki. Just under a year ago we said hello to Lily. We are convinced they are related somehow…. taken Jun 01, 2018 @ 09:07
5 years ago we said a final goodbye to Ricki. Just under a year ago we said hello to Lily. We are convinced they are related somehow....

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View out back of caravan. Lovely end to day taken Apr 14, 2018 @ 19:55
View out back of caravan. Lovely end to day #caravan #adoption
Batch lot of Delia’s Ragu. We had fresh last night & now to be frozen in Sqk size portions. Easy tea for a boy who loves bolognese. taken Apr 17, 2018 @ 16:21
Batch lot of Delia’s Ragu. We had fresh last night & now to be frozen in Sqk size portions. Easy tea for a boy who loves bolognese. #adoptionjourney
Watching Sqk have fun in one of his favourite places. Had a lovely walk around estate as well … taken Apr 21, 2018 @ 11:30
Watching Sqk have fun in one of his favourite places. Had a lovely walk around estate as well ...
Rocking headphones & hat look….. taken Apr 21, 2018 @ 12:29
Rocking headphones & hat look.....
Enjoying our favourite pastime … watching trains taken Apr 29, 2018 @ 10:55
Enjoying our favourite pastime ... watching trains #adoption
Getting ready to scoot …. taken May 06, 2018 @ 15:36
Getting ready to scoot ....

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View out my office window this morning. I made it in – carefully. As expected I am doing 9am lecture as colleague lives up in the Dales. taken Feb 28, 2018 @ 08:10
View out my office window this morning. I made it in - carefully. As expected I am doing 9am lecture as colleague lives up in the Dales.
View now – it is getting interesting. My car may stay here till Friday at this rate taken Feb 28, 2018 @ 08:16
View now - it is getting interesting. My car may stay here till Friday at this rate
I have to give Work credit – now ploughing roads. They appear to want to stay open taken Feb 28, 2018 @ 08:28
I have to give Work credit - now ploughing roads. They appear to want to stay open
My foot attire this morning – they came out of hibernation yesterday…. taken Feb 28, 2018 @ 08:29
My foot attire this morning - they came out of hibernation yesterday....
Snowing again 🙁 taken Feb 28, 2018 @ 15:01
Snowing again :(
Seems be a theme for this date taken Mar 04, 2018 @ 09:00
Seems be a theme for this date
Dragon convention on our bed taken Mar 04, 2018 @ 09:32
Dragon convention on our bed

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Testing in schools and all that

I have been reading a lot of discussion on Twitter about the governments announcement this week on testing times tables for 8/9 year olds in all schools in England in 2020. Once again I am frustrated by yet more standardised testing of our children particularly as my son will be the year in which this happens. He has already ‘failed’ his phonics test in year 1 due to not liking made up words. He scored 20 which coincidentally is the number of real words in the test. He is also by the way reading fluently and at gold level which in my understanding is more usual for the year above him – and this is a summer-born child. He can happily count up and down in 2’s, 5’s and 10’s but as yet has to get the leap to understanding this to be his times tables. Learning by rote as I did is not coming …..

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My current working environment. Sqk decided today was the day to be sick at school … so I am marking third year exam papers laid on floor in our lounge… taken Jan 24, 2018 @ 13:46
My current working environment. Sqk decided today was the day to be sick at school ... so I am marking third year exam papers laid on floor in our lounge...
Our newly decorated lounge including new paintable paper after at least 21 years. Just in time for us to move – hence neutral colours. taken Jan 26, 2018 @ 17:05
Our newly decorated lounge including new paintable paper after at least 21 years. Just in time for us to move - hence neutral colours.
Bathroom also had its first coat of paint since we moved in so I think will be 15+ years (brought off my parents) taken Jan 26, 2018 @ 17:07
Bathroom also had its first coat of paint since we moved in so I think will be 15+ years (brought off my parents)
This sofa is getting crowded …. taken Jan 31, 2018 @ 17:46
This sofa is getting crowded ....
My current view in caravan…. taken Feb 03, 2018 @ 17:47
My current view in caravan....
Don’t think our house has looked this tidy in a very long time … decluttering for photos on Thursday taken Feb 04, 2018 @ 19:11
Don’t think our house has looked this tidy in a very long time ... decluttering for photos on Thursday #housemove

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Drone lady has joined today to go with yesterday’s helicopter. taken Dec 18, 2017 @ 17:57
Drone lady has joined #legocityadvent today to go with yesterday’s helicopter.
Today in snowboard boy is joined by chainsaw man taken Dec 20, 2017 @ 08:16
Today in #legocityadvent snowboard boy is joined by chainsaw man
Snowboard boy admiring the angel who has appeared in taken Dec 21, 2017 @ 08:09
Snowboard boy admiring the angel who has appeared in #legocityadvent
Drone lady now has a powered snowmobile to get around Snowboard boy is impressed…. taken Dec 22, 2017 @ 08:00
Drone lady now has a powered snowmobile to get around #legocityadvent Snowboard boy is impressed....
Well that is cake iced – T admitted last night he preferred royal icing so that is what we have. Now to let it dry then it can be finished if I can find stuff for top …. taken Dec 22, 2017 @ 11:00
Well that is cake iced - T admitted last night he preferred royal icing so that is what we have. Now to let it dry then it can be finished if I can find stuff for top ....
Running Sqk – out for a walk on first day of his holiday. No chance of wearing him out but he is pretending Henry-dog is with us taken Dec 22, 2017 @ 12:25
Running Sqk - out for a walk on first day of his holiday. No chance of wearing him out but he is pretending Henry-dog is with us
Nails done for first time in a year taken Dec 22, 2017 @ 22:38
Nails done for first time in a year #selfcare #adoption
Snowboard boy getting excited in by the arrival of a sleigh but where is the big man himself? taken Dec 23, 2017 @ 08:32
Snowboard boy getting excited in #legocityadvent by the arrival of a sleigh but where is the big man himself?
Lily & Sqk are finally making friends it seems…. taken Dec 23, 2017 @ 13:11
Lily & Sqk are finally making friends it seems....
Hear rustling behind me as wrapping presents. Look to see Lily happily ensconce herself in bag I used to get presents to dining room floor taken Dec 23, 2017 @ 14:33
Hear rustling behind me as wrapping presents. Look to see Lily happily ensconce herself in bag I used to get presents to dining room floor
The big man has arrived in to the delight of snowboard boy. taken Dec 24, 2017 @ 09:17
The big man has arrived in #legocityadvent to the delight of snowboard boy.
One very content Lily-cat….. taken Dec 24, 2017 @ 22:33
One very content Lily-cat..... #catsofinstagram
One happy Sqk this morning – snowman building later he tells me…. taken Dec 29, 2017 @ 08:54
One happy Sqk this morning - snowman building later he tells me....
Fire-bathing Lily-cat…. taken Dec 31, 2017 @ 22:30
Fire-bathing Lily-cat.... #catsofinstagram #catlife

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Thoughts on 2018

Somewhat late as we are 2 weeks in but life is life at moment. This year is shaping up to be interesting as we have made the decision to move close to where I now work which is next city over. Walking distance is what we are hoping for as will bring many benefits to all three of us. T & I will get more time with Sqk and we are hoping to reduce the childcare needs down to 4 days in holidays and 3 after school sessions a week. Big difference from 4 before & after school as we are at moment. Our house should be going on market very early Feb after we have had the lounge re-papered & painted along with bathroom so we have it looking good for photos. Mum & I do not know how long current paintable wallpaper has been on but was on when they moved into house in March 1997….

I have opened up communication with two schools close to campus and am hopeful over our preferred one as had contact from SENCO directly. This is a school that attended AdoptionUK conference in November and specifically mentions attachment in pupil premium document. Hoping to visit it soon and if I get a good impression and indication they will accept Sqk to submit in year transfer form with aim of Sqk starting in September. Even if we haven’t moved I work so close we can manage…. prefer to avoid move early in new school year due to my own issues with that.

We are looking at houses and have a viewing arranged at one in a fortnight – yes early but really to look at space as often one on market so gives us idea of whether that style will work or not. Hoping it will as about 5 minutes walk from my office – I have been taking a lot of lunchtime walks as part of the #AdoptionFitClub on Twitter which seem to have been exploring area round the campus.

I am typing this laid in bed in our caravan which is on a early seasonal pitch which is about 45 minutes from T’s work. Doing lots of stays in it here and in its next seasonal pitch to get Sqk secure in the new caravan before we up end his secure home base. We are dealing with on/off wobbles over moving which we expected and are coping with. Still waiting to see if LA are going to assess for an EHCP but as SENCO said yesterday 6 weeks tends to be ignored so although request went in 6 weeks ago could be a wait yet. One thing I will discuss in visiting the potential new school as well…..

So 2018 starts with us in one place with Sqk at one school and will hopefully end (if our house sells) with us in another place entirely. I know this is the right decision for so many reasons but I do have a real connection to our house and indeed the town (with village mentality) where I have lived for the majority of last 26 years. Even when I spent 3 years in my first house in other side of city I came back regularly to see my parents. Will miss the closeness of family when we move – my parents now live ain’t the same place and both my siblings are local as well. We are only moving 10 miles but still….