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Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Summer. Hooray, it has begun!

Do you know about our summer fishbowl? You might know that we make all sorts of good use of glass jars all year round. Before summer begins, we list all the things we'd like to do and cut the list into strips. We put those into a glass bowl (usually Flippy's old place) and draw a day's plan each summer morning. One year our fishbowl made it into the Chicago Tribune!  Happy summer days.  It is a ritual worth celebrating and the kids love it as much as I do. They know exactly whose turn it is to draw the day's adventure and they're keen to see what is on tap.

Monday, our first official day of summer, was relatively organizational in nature and medical, too as most people still slogging through a virus and nasty fever. We did manage our first daily "morning meeting" complete with our weather song and writing down all of our summer to do items to go into our fishbowl. What will I do when my children age out of their eager willingness for my preschool activities?  I cannot even contemplate that and am so tickled they continue to like (nay, insist on keeping!) our summer tradition!

Despite the beckoning sunshine, all I could entice the smalls to do after our first meeting was to double decker bus to the most American of malls we're close to where several spent Christmas and birthday money.  Then after LEGO building, long naps and medicine, we were able to get to one of our favorite playgrounds within Hyde Park.

Day two found us at the Serpentine (also in Hyde Park which Big Brother calls "the biggest front yard ever!") Lido where we splashed, kicked a ball, and played on the playground. We enjoyed lunch along the Serpentine (that's an Olympic staff boat patrolling the Serpentine above. How cool is that?!) and counted our blesssings that this is our home. Biggest Brother said, "it is kinda neat being behind the scenes of the Olympics."  So true, my lovey!  Even those bleachers below were constructed for The Games. Big Brother speculates the purple seats are for Kate Middleton. Here's hoping she's bringing lots of friends.

Do you know about the lidos?  One of many built in London in the 1930s, the Serpentine Lido is a swimming pond and beach within Hyde Park. Our favorite part is that there is a lot of green space, a wading pool, playground, and mostly, that it is a short walk from our flat with views of Westminster Abbey, the London Eye and Big Ben along the way. I'm not taking the time to look it up now, but I think the lido featured in the hot summer book "Ladies Bathing Society" is at Hampstead Heath.

We scootered home after lots of hot and wet play, lunch, a Pimms and a round of ice cream. One particular bikini baby was so dozy she might not have made it home without the solid stance of her Biggest Brother encouraging her steps. We saw lots of exciting sights - the London Eye! A carriage ride and horses in the park! Olympic event staging! and know this is just the beginning of a summer to remember.

One of my favorite summers (our last one in La Grange) we kept a quick and easy scrapbook of our day's fishbowl drawings and related photos and notes. It is treasure. In case I don't make that happen again, I'm posting the "scrapbook" here. Apologies in advance for subjecting you to it!


  1. Heather and I love dropping in on you guys through your blog. She says to tell you "she misses you guys." Hope everyone is well. Hello from the Peterson's in LGP. Cheers!

    1. Hiya! you have NO idea how happy this makes us! We think (and talk!) of you and yours SO often. Tickled that you keep us with us and we follow your updates on FB asap. We love life in London, but there will always be a huge part of us that feels insane for having left LG...xo!