Wednesday, 8 September 2010

Summer Holiday in Brittany (Third Week)

On our first day after Scott went back home, it was one of those mornings when the mist and sun were just right so that you knew it would look fantastic in the nearby wood. Lucy and I went there to get some photos, and also found Dad in the wood, with the same idea! I took this one of Dad,
and he took this one of me and Lucy. (I was still in my pyjamas.)
The path to the commune bins.
After church, Dad, the kids and I went to the village of Lizio, parked in a field and went to a country fayre, where they cordon off the entire village. There were thousands of people there, and lots to see. It was boiling hot.
There were loads of fantastic models to look at.One of our neighbours in the commune down the lane is Martin, who is English with a French wife. He's into miniature steam trains. Here's Dad chatting with him, at his club's part of the fayre.The kids watching the remote controlled car racing circuit.Jack and Tom on the steam train.
The next day, and kids and I set out for our first bike adventure! Tom and Harry haven't been riding bikes for very long, and this was the first time we had been anywhere together. (Scott and Lucy bought out 3 bikes in the car with them, so we all have one in France now.) I had photocopied our bit of the map, with all the farm tracks etc. on it, and laminated it, so we took that with us, and a picnic in my bike basket.
It felt so good having our first bike ride picnic! It was beautiful weather, and we felt so free and happy! This photo brings back such a good memory!
Back at Bel-Air, I moved out of my bedroom, and into Ken & Bev's spare room, and Dad started a week long intensive decorating of it. He did a wonderful job, and it looks amazing! - all beautiful wooden beams and white paint!
On Wednesday, we headed to 'the island beach'. With my co-ordinates in the satnav, it was easy to get to. I felt a real sense of achievement getting there though, because normally I rely so much on Scott to drive and be in charge!
The beach was quite busy, so we took all our stuff straight onto the island, and stayed on the little beach on the far side of it.
It was glorious! We had the little beach pretty much to ourselves, and Harry played totally happily, while Lucy, Jack and Tom messed around in the sea with life jackets on, then played with Harry.
We had no idea of the time - just stayed as long as we wanted, then headed back... to find that the island had been cut off from the main beach! The older kids carried all the stuff and I gave Harry a piggyback while we waded back! We thought it was great!
The next day, the boys and I went on another bike ride/picnic.It's so much fun just being in the middle of nowhere! Harry and Tom sometimes found the cycling a bit hard going, but after a bit got used to the fact they just had to get off and push up-hill sometimes.
Making playdough the next day... we had to improvise a bit (used-up sealant tubes for rolling pin/tomato puree for food colouring the playdough etc...)
On Saturday evening Dad got a good fire going, and made some sharpened sticks, so we could have marshmallows. (Very burnt ones in Tom's case.)After church on Sunday, we had a nice time hanging out in the lane...
Harry has been doing great on his bike, but has no sense of fear, or of slowing down round corners, and he has been having cuts and scrapes on top of his cuts and scrapes...
It's been a bit of a challenge in France to keep Harry in particular from being really loud/arguing/moaning etc. - living with Dad, and having new neighbours to consider. Harry and the others to a lesser extent, have needed keeping in control somewhat - I couldn't just say 'go and play with all your toys', or use the telly as a calming-down tool. We've had a long stretch of time to fill, without our usual possessions and privacy, and all the kids sharing one room has meant they were more tired than usual. We all adore it here, but I wouldn't want to give the impression that every moment is sweetness and light!
Lucy and Harry with all his wounds. We had a right laugh trying to photograph half of Lucy in one end of the drainage pipe, and her other half coming out the other end. It didn't work very well!
The kids also went in the field to glean the leftover wheat (and chuck hay).Lucy and I chatting in the ditch.
Dad and the boys separated loads of wheat from the chaff.
Dad later cracked the wheat, boiled it, and made curry and spaghetti etc. with it, instead of using meat.


Jo Waters said...

I love the pictures in the wood - they are just fantastic. I was also heartened that your children sometimes argue too - it all looks so idyllic in the photos!

Anna said...

Those photographs in the woods are just stunning. Looks like you had some great adventures in Bel-aire