Sunday, 1 July 2012

Week 16 and our first big family party!

This week has gone relatively smoothly. Joe had his first invite for tea after school on Thursday. He was initially excited but grew more anxious as we got closer, and Thursday morning was a fairly traumatic drop off at the school gate as he got very upset and clingy, and was dragged of me shouting 'Daddy don't leave me' but G went down after school to check he did really want to go back to his friend's house and he seemed keen, and when I went to pick him up three hours later he was having a great time. It's all new experiences for him, we can only assume that in foster care, the carers don't get so involved in school life, it must be very hard for them being in that limbo place, not quite part of the parents circle, but we are trying to help Joe catch up, making up for lost time!

The rest of the week had been pleasant too, Charlie got to spend some time with Nanny and Aunty Nikki and we also had an appointment with the physio. When the boys arrived with us, there was some concern over Charlie's delayed motor skills, he walked on the balls of his feet, a condition linked with children that spent too much time in their cots as infants, and he was clumsy, unable to run or use his scooter. It started to get better fairly quickly and we were getting less concerned as time went by, but asked the health visitor to make an appointment with the physio just to be sure. This week he started scooting all the way to Joe's school so we were getting less and less concerned, and the physio confirmed that he's all clear.

On Friday we took the boys out of school and nursery early, to start the 180 mile journey back to my parents, in order to watch my dad carry the Olympic torch. It was the boys first long car journey, their first visit to the Grandma and Grandad's and their first big family party. The journey was subject to very long motorway delays and ended up taking nearly five hours, throughout which time the boys were fantastic, not complaining once. They were very excited to get to Grandma's house, especially as we were having a sleepover and two uncles, two aunts and four cousins were all going to be there too!

It was a tough job getting them off to sleep on Friday night, but they behaved well on Saturday and took the party in their stride. Grandad was carrying the torch early in the day, and they stood patiently at the front of the crowds waving the flags, and cheering when Grandad finally sprinted into view. Afterwards we took all the cousins to the park before heading back for the big event. Mum reckons there were nearly 60 people there, but the boys were unphased, meeting lots of people they hadn't met before, including their great grandma.

On Saturday night they had a bath with Daisy and Harper, two of the cousins, which has led to all questions about why girls have such strange willies ('they are all cut off!') but it was fab to see them all giggling and splashing away.

They slept well in a giddy state of exhaustion, but woke early. More family time today including lunch at the pub, before putting the boys in the car for the 3.5 hour drive home. They were asleep within 6 minutes of leaving grandma's drive, and we woke them up two hours later for fear that they would never sleep tonight! They certainly seem to handle long car journeys well!

In fact, to be honest, they seem to handle everything we throw at them very well. I was very worried that this weekend would be way too much for them, it's the first time we've spent two nights away from home, there were lots and lots of new faces, their first trip to Grandma's house, the crowds and the torch relay, no normal rhythm or routine, and yet they were completely fine with it. They are certainly made of tough stuff!

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