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Hamish takes 1st prize!


Hamish took first prize as the Highway (Code) Man at the fancy dress parade last week as part of the Heather Queen event. Lorraine outdid herself this year with her creativity. Freya’s standing behind dressed as Rapunzel. I’m proud of you all!


Freya’s first baby tooth came out yesterday. She was ever so pleased and wrote a letter to the toothfairy, asking whether she could keep her tooth for a few more days as she wanted to take it in to show-and-tell at school.

Gappy tooth

Letter to toothfairy

The tooth

Young Nats

Freya took a trip to Dean Castle with the young naturalists back in September. I finally got around to scanning the Banner article. Enjoy!

Freya’s last day at nursery in Lux

As I was going through my old posts, this picture really stood out as representing the moment perfectly. It was a sad time, incredibly sad actually, and that surprised me. It was Freya’s last day at précoce, or nursery school, in our little village of Sanem. She hadn’t been going for all that long really, but she’d got into the routine and so had I. I used to pick her up at lunch time with Hamish on my back in the Bush Baby. Sometimes we’d go up to the chateau to get Lorraine and walk home together, but more often I would use the opportunity to take some pictures with my Nikon.

I was never particularly happy in Luxembourg, so it’s surprising how sad I was feeling during these last few weeks and how nostalgic I feel now looking back. I think it must be largely because I got to see so much of the kids then, although I didn’t fully appreciate that at the time. In which case I should extrapolate that forward to now, so that I do make sure I appreciate the time I have now.

The walk home from précoce was about 10 minutes and it really was a lovely wee village where we lived.

The hardest goodbye was at the forest creche. I took Freya there every afternoon and picked her up at night. It’s the one thing I miss most about Lux. Freya loved it and had a lot of friends there. It was funny to watch her playing with her friends and listen to her speaking fluent Luxembourgish. Ho hum…

Sandy and Eliane


The kids were at a Halloween party at the school last night and had a great time. For some reason I can’t get Lightroom to export the photos in their proper colour settings on the Macbook; their costumes were more vibrant than they look here. But you get the idea.

Freya’s first day at school

Our big five-year-old started school on Monday 17 August. She was very excited!

School photo 2009

School Photo 2008

Freya’s school photo taken at nursery in May 2008. We only just got it this week.

Brodick Highland Games

It was the Highland Games yesterday in Brodick. The morning was wet through to about midday and then it cleared up pretty much for the afternoon. There were five pipe bands over to the island, including one from Brittany. They all got off the 11 o’clock boat and I got to see them marching along Brodick main street from the Post Office. I closed up at 1-ish, got home and got Lorraine and the kids into the car and back into Brodick.

It was a great day watching the pipe bands, especially the mass band when all five marched round the playing fields. There was all the usual Highland Games events: caber tossing (see pictures), hammer throwing, beer barrels. I didn’t see any Highland dancing strangely enough, but it could just be that there was some and we missed it. I think Freya would have enjoyed watching that.

The only annoying thing was the high number of wasps, evil things that they are. If it’s not midges, it’s bloody wasps. Ugh!

Anyway, it started winding down so I brought L and the kids home around 5-ish then headed back out for the march back through Brodick to the ferry terminal. There was a really heavy downpour as the bands were marching, so they were all wet through. Didn’t seem to spoil their fun in the slightest though and the finale was great, watching all five bands cutting loose in the ferry car park, passing whisky round and just jamming. I was really wishing that I had my camera with me then and wishing even more that I had a 70-200 f/2.8 VR. That’s my dream lens right at the minute.

Anyway, it was a fun day out and I’m looking forward to next year’s already. Nothing gets to me like the sound of a pipe band, so imagine five of them playing together!

Hamish is 2 today

So our wee boy is now 2! I managed to get out of work at five and get round the supermarket to get some shopping and bits and pieces for a birthday tea. Freya and Rachel tried making a cake this afternoon but it didn’t work out very well. Hamish didn’t mind though. He had fun blowing out the candle and even managed to do it all on his own and then give himself a round of applause. Well done our little man!