Saturday, July 31, 2010

Bike Crank

My family and I went cycling this afternoon. But unfortunately my son’s pedal crank had worked loose without my noticing and it came off. So without tools to repair, we had to cut short our ride. Shame, I had been looking forward to riding my new bike a bit longer. We were all quite tired though, after not getting back from London until after midnight (my wife and I) and the kids stay up later during the holidays than they would at school.

Holiday Beckons

We travel down to the coast on Monday. I’m looking forward to being away somewhere new for a while. I have to think tomorrow what I want to take with me. I’ve a couple of books I could take and my PSP. I have a drawing pad and some pencils. And not to mention the video camera and the stills camera. I also need to think about the journey and what snack food we’ll be needing. Motorway food can be ridiculously expensive, so I think is best avoided spending lots of money on food if we can.

I hope the sea air recharges all of our human body batteries. My back is slowly regaining its strength, I’ve been applying Ralgex for the last couple of days to ease the pain a bit – I don’t know if it’s helping or I’m just getting better on my own accord. Oh well, the end result is the same.

Friday Night by The Darkness

This song makes me smile and I hadn’t seen the video until today, I wish all rock videos were this amusing.

Theatre Night

For my wife’s birthday this year I planned to surprise her. I asked a friend of ours to try and find out which shows she was interested in seeing. My wife loves musicals and seeing West End shows. She loves walking around London in summer evenings when the streets are crowded and there is food and music all around and people having a fun time. So our friend mentioned a couple of shows a few months back and I took a gamble and booked one of them without really knowing anything about it or doing the normal amount of research. My wife also likes to try and book quite a long time in advance to get seats near the front. I got stalls seats that were two rows from the front, so good or bad we would be able to watch closely.

The plan came to fruition last night, the babysitter (my mother in-law) arrived early and it all clicked into place. We both had a good time and it was nice to be doing something different on a Friday night. It was also nice knowing that her birthday was the next day and that in a couple of days we would be going away to the seaside for our holiday. She loved the show, we both did. It was in the Prince Edward Theatre London , which was a lovely theatre – the show we saw was called The Jersey Boys. It was the story of The Four Seasons, latterly Frankie Valli and The Four Seasons. Very well acted and sung by all the cast with wonderful stage production and direction and amazing set design.

I found out that my wife likes surprises to an extent but she found it a little uncomfortable until she knew the nature of the surprise, so I had to drop little hints this week just to settle her a bit.

Thursday, July 29, 2010


This week has been enjoyable and productive so far. On Wednesday we cleared the loft of a number of items that had been hanging around too long. My wife also threw out our old Christmas tree and I think is secretly excited about buying a new one to replace it.

Today I sorted out the sitting room, it was becoming my sons play room: he was turning it into that and my wife and I were slowly retreating into either the dining room or our bedroom. I reclaimed it as a family room. Cunningly I have created a space behind the sofa where he can play with his Lego while my wife and I watch TV. He loves it. All I did was angle the sofa in a different way. I now have both the Wii and my Xbox plugged into the same TV. So I play my adult rated games after my kids have gone to bed.

Monday, July 26, 2010


My wife and I spent the day clearing the crap out of the garden. It was very satisfying to finish the final car trip to the dump knowing that the garden was clear. This includes the dreaded bottom shed. Now free for us to use as a garage for our bikes that we pick up tomorrow.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Red Dead Saturday

Today I traded in some videogames for the Red Dead Redemption game. It’s an open world Western with great graphics and game play. It’s probably got enough content to keep me going a couple of years.

After that we visited the local cycle shop. We’ve been walking or jogging while the children ride their bikes on Sunday mornings, but we've wanted to join them on our own bikes so that we can keep up with them. We haven’t had bikes for years and I’ve never rode along with my wife as neither of us have had a bike while we’ve been together. But today, we decided to go and select a pair of bikes for us. And we did just that. Two nice silver bikes. We pick them up on Tuesday. Here’s a photo of mine, my wife has the women’s frame version – it is a bit smaller for the rider which suits her size better.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Friday at last!

It feels like it has been a long week this one. Today is good because it marks the start of two weeks of annual leave for me. I’m delighted not to have to worry about work for the next fortnight. I have been so busy at work and at the weekends lately that I haven’t really had a chance to have a good sit down and do some blogging. I hope to have more time for this now.

Last weekend my son competed again in a Judo competition and won his three fights to win a second gold medal. I was really chuffed for him. He also got to meet a real life para-Olympian Judo player and got his picture taken holding a real life Olympic medal, what a treat!

Monday, July 05, 2010

Sherlock Holmes

I watched the film Sherlock Holmes this weekend, being used to the Basil Rathbone/Nigel Bruce characterisations of Holmes and Dr Watson I must admit to feeling like they got the relationship between the two characters wrong. There was almost a role reversal between the two characters, with Downey Jr playing it for laughs against Watson's straight man. So, although the film was entertaining in it's way, I don't think it was a successful version.
This weekend was a bit of an unexpected success. My daughter was involved in a Judo competition, the other competitors were using it as a practice session for the national squad - so they were really good. My daughter did well but lost her two fights and the other members of our club fought hard but lost too. Valuable experience but a bit humbling. However, as my daughter was several kilos lighter than her opponents, she was the only competitor in her class and therefore won the gold medal. So that was a surprise.
On Sunday, the under eights at the club went for a training session and there was a bit of a competition afterwards. I had been trying all week to balance my son's confidence and optimism with a bit of realism: so he would say things like he was going to have a box to keep his medals in and I was saying that it's not about winning but about taking part. We heard that all competitors win some kind of medal, so I thought ah well he'll at least have a bronze to bring home. But he surprised me with his techniques and actually knuckled down to the task at hand, winning his three fights to win a gold medal. He's only a slight lad and his competitors were much taller than him. Just goes to show how much your kids can surprise you.