Bee and Mip have been practicing for a few weeks now for the Church Nativity. They have a CD of the songs that Bee listens to as often as possible. Bee will sing along to the CD and knows it completely, he is very confident singing them at home. For the last few Sunday afternoons they have taken a packed lunch to Church and stayed to have their practice, it is probably the first time we have left Mip like that. Bee has been very excited and quite definite that he couldn’t miss his group or any of the practices, each Sunday has been an exciting experience for him. The nativity itself came and the boys were dressed up as shepherds (and not just a tea towel on the head either – much more sophisticated looking!). (The shades were used in one specific song.) They really enjoyed taking part. They were definitely singing, though in their own quiet way, and the same can be said for their muted version of the actions. Mip was often staring at the screen behind him to find out what was on it, instead of looking ahead of himself and singing – on another planet as he often is! It must be one of those ‘first parenting moments’, the children taking part in their first nativity. Well, we enjoyed it and so did they.
The boys (Bee and Mip) are spending lots of time drawing. They will sit at the kitchen table for hours doing all sorts of pictures. Everything Bee does at the moment comes from the Ed Emberley book, and Mip uses the book and makes up his own too. They started off mainly doing ships, but are quickly branching out into other forms of transport and buildings too.
Sundays are busy at the moment with extra rehearsals for Bee and Mip for their nativity play. It is being done as a musical, and Bee has been taking it very seriously and listening to the CD all week to learn his songs. (Bee and Mip are extra shepherds!). They are enjoying it very much. I’m a bit niggled by it though – it is done to be entertaining, so Joseph gets the blues, and the “cool shepherds” have to wear shades. But if it’s done to entertain and be funny, what happens to the sense of wonder, and really engaging with the story? Also, in the middle of winter, where can you buy sunglasses for children?!!
On Thursday we went down to the Museum in London. Two other families came with us and we had a nice time together. The travel was very good as we had some time to talk together, in between reading to the children (Old Ironsides and some Dr Seuss). It made the actual travelling easier too, as we had some help to get our 4 children up and down escalators, stairs etc.
We started off in the part of the museum that is about planet Earth, but found that although some of it was interesting, really it was a bit beyond our boys, because they couldn’t really relate to ideas like erosion, plate tectonics, etc.. They enjoyed finding out about earthquakes, seeing the videos, going in the earthquake room and JJ loved putting his hands on the earthquake table that simulated different strength earthquakes. Also, we saw a piece of moonrock and remembered the Buzz Aldrin book we have, where he says ‘magnificent desolation’.
We had lunch in the picnic area in the basement. Got in there just before 1, when all the school groups were leaving, 5 minutes later that place had been transformed and was much more peaceful (even though there were still a few classes left). It was lovely to see our children playing with A’s three boys (ranging in age from similar age to Bee up to 11). The eldest of A’s boys was very sweetly looking out for JJ when he was wandering.
Spent the rest of the afternoon looking at fish, dinosaurs, mammals and the human body. Oh, and having coffee and cake.
All very tired by the time we arrived home at 9pm, but it had been very worth while.