I've decided on the 20th of the month to take 20 photos without fussing over composition or editing that tell the story of our day in some way.
Oh I will miss this. It seems we have finally reached a place where hair brushing has become a pleasurable first pause in the day to chat and connect.
All done, and my little Miss Gappy Teeth is already for her day. She loves having what we call "a Victorian" in my family - just like her aunties had as children (and I still do as a grown up)
The children are at holiday club run by a local church every morning this week and we walk down to be at the venue for just gone nine.
Even in the grottiest parts of the city, Mother Nature is there...which I find comforting.
I'm not a graffiti fan, especially commercial graffiti, but this makes me smile every time we've walked past it lately.
It was such a treat to sit in the garden with a coffee and just breathe, knowing nobody would be along to tell me they'd just got injured in a fight with their sibling or to ask if they could watch a dvd or look up long bows on Amazon.
Working among the bees that are thick on the canes, I picked some delicious raspberries to have for my late breakfast with cool thick greek yoghurt and flaked almonds.
I spent some time in the kitchen getting adzuki beans cooking to make Red Dragon pie for supper (and in the cream pot, the fragrant simmering of chicken stock - right now we are experimenting with eating meat once a week, and make that a good free range, corn fed chicken and use up every last bit)
Molly Two-Stockings hung out in the kitchen with me. Little by little, our Miss Molly is showing signs of settling down again. She seemed very happy here at first but then got into a couple of bad fights with Coco (90% Molly's fault) and it has taken weeks for her to relax and show signs of friendliness to anyone but Kitten.
And then I squeezed in some more relaxing in the garden with my sweet little wooly girl to keep me company before heading out to pick up the small people...
On the way home, we stopped to play at a little park the children are fond of. There were two little ones there who Kitten would happily have kidnapped and brought home.
I love the views down the old "yards" in our city into what are now cute little courtyard gardens. Don't you want to sit there, sipping something icy?
We ate popcorn for lunch. With butter and maple syrup. It was very nice especially as we were so hot after walking home at noon.
We have plans to harvest the apples this week and try stewing them down and freezing them, even though they are early eating apples.
The children sorted out their outfits for the holiday club - the theme is "secret agents" and this is how my two interpret it. Sometimes I could squeeze them to death.
Mouse helped make the red dragon pie, topping the adzuki bean sauce with slices of par-boiled potato to make the scales. The rest of the soaked and cooked beans went in the freezer - I honestly find cooking and freezing beans so much cheaper and healthier than buying canned.
We let the girls out of the coop for a leg stretch and a bowl of yoghurt. It was so nice to see them pottering around the garden, especially for the children who are usually in bed when we let the hens out, and I wish we could let them free range more often.
One of the pleasures of summer is watering the garden - the enormous, still vigorously growing oak in our neighbours garden sucks the soil dry, leaving it like sand, and so we need to water it often - but how beautiful and fresh and lush it feels when the leaves are dripping and the soil smells dark and wet.
The red dragon pie was so delicious. It was hard to leave left overs for tomorrow. What was much harder was that after yet another day of fighting verbally and physically with each other, one child had to go up to bed early and the other child and I ate alone. I explained, at tucking in time, that I love my children all the time but that holding the boundaries and following through with consequences is a painful but essential part of a mama's job.
My evening has included sleepy time tea, candles, "Ed Riordan's Week" on the radio iplayer, and now I'm off for some PG Wodehouse before an early night. I need to be on top of my game tomorrow.