Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Christmas party

We had the end of year afternoon tea today. It makes it feel very much like it's nearly Christmas.

I usually post photos of the children, and I haven't remembered the camera for an afternoon tea before, but I had a brainwave, and got a very few photos to give an idea of the spirit of the thing.

I am finishing providing in-home childcare from this week, and it's quite sad to think the children (and parents) won't be coming around next year.

But, the plan is to study full-time and write my thesis in one year.

I suppose that this time next year people are going to be asking me if it's finished - that will make me get my skates on!

Katie's prizegiving

We had Katie's prizegiving last night. No photo I'm afraid, as I forgot the camera. (Not sure Kate would stand still for a photo in her school uniform, actually, and highly unlikely that she would put it on one last time as a record for posterity!)

It was done a bit differently to Rowena's school. We were only allowed to clap after every 5 names. (Very unsatisfying, as I wanted to yahoo - as did other parents in the audience, I could tell), but this did make the evening go faster.

Also, they gave each girl all her prizes (which were mainly certificates) at one go.

Katie did not find out what her prize was for until it was read out as she waited at the side of the stage. She made some guesses before, but it really was a surprise.

She got high distinction (that means first in year) for Visual Arts Design.

We are very stoked, and so is she. It is probably the subject she cares most about, and certainly the one that she puts most work into, as far as I can tell - though practical art subjects are notorious for being high work-load.

So - well done Katie!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

And I had a birthday cake too!

We have often had a small birthday cake for the children's birthdays. Sometimes, but not always, made by me. Katie is keen on cake, and will make one for any reason if she's home on the right ocassion (ie, a school holiday or half day).

My birthday was a 'Little Kids' day this year, and Kate was on study leave, so she produced this cake. The number of candles is not significant of anything - except a desire to avoid setting off the smoke alarm.

It's a lovely photo of Cara, Isla and Grace, though not so great of me.

The girls were all very restrained about the 'blowing out' part - they let me do it. I got a nice round of 'Happy Birthday' too, with Katie's help.

Summer's here - the paddling pool came out

Summer must officially be here because we have had the paddling pool out.

This picture was on a Tuesday in November and Grace, Eva and Isla had been in the pool after lunch while Theo was asleep. Later, Eva and Isla decided to have another paddle - and Theo just climbed in in his clothes. (His trousers were probably already wet anyway...!)

Isla was very intent on her job filling the pool. (The earlier lot of water had been 'mysteriously' transported out of the pool.) Theo was quite keen on catching that glittering stream of water (not at this particular moment.) And Eva was just delighted to be getting wet, splashing and paddling.

I was pleased that we had a paddling day, because it turned out that this was Eva's last regular day with me. As a little one she just adored climbing into the water, and it could be quite hard on her to have to get out and go home. This is what I said on Feb 8 last year:

"I set up the water trough in the shade this afternoon, and after the Big Kids got home Sophie and I got out the paddling pool. Great fun! E had an absolute ball, and both Little Kids were SOAKED when their mums came to collect them. I love my job!"

Eva will be back for our end of year party.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Wellington Playcentre Association Life Members

A significant event, and a great surprise, was being made a life member of the Wellington Playcentre Association at their AGM in November.

I am pictured above with Justine, Marie and Kate, who were also made lifers at the same time. I think making four people life members in unprecedented, but perhaps they were having a 'catch up'.

Justine, Marie, Kate and I were all on the Executive together for several years earlier this decade. Justine as Property, Marie was Education, Kate was Promotions, and I was President for two years. They have all gone on to different roles as volunteers within Playcentre, at regional and national level.

(OK, Kate's Federation career is still before her - but only because there were too many nominations for the Federation Promotions Team this year!)

We are pictured at the opening of Newtown Playcentre's first centre of their own, after 56 years as a 'pack-away' centre operating out of community halls. That's a whole other story in itself! At that event I had the pleasure of chatting to some older life members - one in her eighties. Sounds like the political processes were pretty much the same run around throughout the decades.

Many thanks to the Brooklyn Playcentre Ukulele Orchestra who played a song tribute at the AGM for me. They had customised a song especially for the occasion, and I was really touched to see them all turn up - what a great surprise! Bern and three of the girls were also there.