Friday, April 12, 2013

High wires and fun outdoors ..........

There is a very dark cloud overhead right now, and it is going to rain heavily again. It has been doing this since last night. Rain and more rain. I don't think I told you that a fairy godmother left me some bags of compost last week, did I? Well, she returned this week (10% discount for over 60s on a Wednesday) with 3 more even bigger bags. AND the other fairy godmother (Jean) stopped at the same store on the same day and bought me 3 more HUGE bags of compost! I have been swamped with it all, so Jean and I went down to the allotment yesterday and two of the raised beds are now full and ready for when I want to plant, and the other 2 still need more soil or compost, but there is always next week, and I will go and get some more. I am SO excited at the way those raised beds are shaping up. They are going to be fabulous.

Anyway, I told you that last weekend was sunny and mild, so I got out into the garden and planted the first 4 potatoes in their pots, and the peas, some broad beans, the godetia, larkspur,  love in the mist flowers and more in the greenhouse. The tomato plants are indoors with the butternut and gem squash and courgettes. The greenhouse has the leeks, more flowers, and more vegetable seeds, and they are quite happy. I think. I love going out and checking them every day. Do any of you go and check to see if the lilies are poking their way through the soil in the mornings? Or maybe I am the only weird one! This year, I am taking plenty of anti squirrel precautions. They have been snapping off the heads and running off with them. Horrible little pests.
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Anyway, moving on from the garden, my visitors arrived last week, and after a few days in London, they came back here. Sara needed to do a lot of shopping, so that was Monday occupied, but the kids were less than enthralled. They loved playing up at the village Rec, and we fitted in a couple of visits, but I knew they needed something more, so on Tuesday, we went to Irchester Country Park, which is not far away, and they had a wonderful time playing on the equipment. I went to find out about the high wire Jungle Parc, and they have 2 courses. One for the 4-11 age group and one for everyone else. So, Sara thought they would enjoy it.
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The one and a half hour session started with the safety instructions, and detailed instructions of how to hook on, behave etc. They were clipped on with their safety harness at all times, and just had to move the other thingy as they moved from one section to another.
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It starts easily with two simple (low) green courses, then 2 blue courses. Getting higher and more challenging all the time. And I mean higher. 
This was on the red course. You can see how high they have got already, because Sara is down there taking photos and she is an inch or so shorter than me. That is her daughter up there. (Above)
Sara's son, N, was a total daredevil and raced around the course. He was supremely confident. And he is the younger one. No fear whatsoever. S, who is 9, took a little longer, and was a total girl, but she loved it too.

See? Getting higher all the time.
And this was the nemesis. The high point of the black course. N managed beautifully. Those boards have metal wire holding them in place, and they don't swing much at all. He leapt about. Easy. And then came S. Well. Just as she got to that cross in the middle, she froze. And she was HIGH up there. Her mother and I were trying to calm her down, encourage and praise, and urge her on - as was the other mother whose child was just behind her. I was standing underneath. It was HIGH. And her tears were raining down. On me. And so help me, none of us could get up there, so she HAD to do it. And she did in the end,. but all the adults in the vicinity were hoarse, and needed a nap immediately to recover. And what did the kids do? They went off and did another round of courses again.
GO,  S!!!! You can do it!!!

The kids loved it. They were absolutely on fire and so happy and so tired. So was I. Thank the Good Lord Jean had invited us to supper and I didn't have to cook anything. She has had a visitor who lives in the Caucasus staying for a couple of weeks. Glynis has her sister visiting, Marge has my son and daughter-in-law - we have all had visitors at the same time around here.

So supper with Jean was great. So was getting to bed relatively early.
Aren't these trees beautiful against the sky? 
And on their final day, we all went to tea with our friends, Jackie and Simon and their 3 children. Sara's kids were about similar ages, and even though they didn't speak the same language, they all had a wonderful time, while the adults chatted and ate orange cake and relaxed over tea and coffee. Home for a real fish and chips supper and then yesterday my Swiss friends flew off back to the Alps with their bulging suitcases.

I spoke to Sara last night, and she was very indignant that the customs search people in Luton had confiscated her Betty Crocker tubs of icing. It was a cream they said, and a danger. Give me strength. Icing. A danger. (Frosting to those in the US.) But they were safely home, and had a great time, so that was excellent. Except for the icing saga.

The sun is shining again now. I have been outside checking on the seedlings, and yanking out a few weeds as well. Diana will be home next week, and she will not want to see weeds in her beautifully cleared beds.

And so normal life resumes back here in the middle of England. I have not made it to gym this week, and next week is looking rather full as well. Mum has had a lot of dental appointments with more to come, and life rumbles on. I need to start making things again. I have no idea what yet, but I will find something. I can't sit and snooze ever time I sink onto the couch or the rocking chair, now can I .

Anyone would think I was aged.


Susan said...

As I am reading this, here in Zurich, the skies have darkened and it is raining to beat the band. I hope it stops soon, I need to walk to the bus and get over to the Coop for some food!

My goodness, you have been a busy lady! Reading about the high wire course gave me heart palpitations. Talk about exciting!

I love reading about your garden; I have no such strengths and it's just as well, as we don't have a garden apartment. I really do admire people who can cause things to grow :-)

thanks for blogging, Linds!

Vee said...

I'm feeling stressed enough by that description of the climbers that I need to hobble to the pantry for some chamomile tea. Ha!

So many things keeping you busy!

We're living in parallel worlds today as it is cold and rainy here, too.

Kelli said...

That looks like a load of fun!

When you talked about it on FB, I had to run online and look up the parc you went to.

And the icing thing? R.i.d.i.c.u.l.o.u.s.


So glad you are back.

Tigger said...

Great to see you back ! Would love to try the asssault course.....never mind being a grown up.
Hope it stays dry & sunny for you

Needled Mom said...

What a fabulous climbing park!!! I'll bet the kids had a blast and the pictures are wonderful.

It won't be long before you are knee high in the gardening and harvesting. So much excitement to be had this year!!

Crystal said...

That park sounds like a great place! I'm going to show the photos to my son-in-law - I'm sure he will create something like it in their (2 acre) yard. They already have an ice rink that becomes a gigantic summer sandbox, a treehouse with 2 levels and a firepole, rope, and climbing wall - so this would be a great addition. You have the most interesting spaces in your community!

And I agree - you have such a full and precious life! Thanks for telling us about it.