Skating at the Natural History Museum
Cara (Rich's sister) and Nick fancied doing some outside iceskating, and as we all went to Summerset House last year Nick wanted us to try the Natural History Museum's rink this year. Good call Nick - as the rink was really good, I think it is bigger than the one at Summerset House.
We were quite impressed by the method they used to clear the water from the rink between sessions - 4 of the staff skaters spent about 20 minutes skating round the rink with what looked like brooms without bristles trying to push the water off the rink. They didn't have much success, but it was fun to watch.
After an hour of successful skating (none of us fell over, hoorah!) we wandered back over to Nick and Cara's while stopping off at the Hotel Chocolat shop for supplies. We had a fantastic buffet style dinner with a very tasty chocolate fudge cake for dessert (please send me the receipe Cara!)
Off to Yorkshire for Christmas
Rich's Mum and Dad (RM and RD) kindly invited us to stay with them for Christmas so off we went to sunny Yorkshire for 4 days.
There was so much food. Tons and tons of it. And so much chocolate... yum.
RD got out Rich's old scalextric for us to play with, so we had some fun racing each other, and I won first prize for getting the car to fly the furthest off the track. We also played Monopoly which I won with my sharp buisness brain and on another evening we played Trivial Pursuit - which Rich and I also won!
Our Christmas was really lovely - thanks again for making us feel so welcome RM and RD, hopefully we will be able to be your hosts soon.
Visiting Liz and Myfanwy
Rich and I wandered over to Wales today to catch up with my sister Liz and her daughter Myfanwy. Myfanwy has really grown since we last saw her, she is quite the little lady now (just take a look at her in her school uniform) and really talkative - like her mum.
My mum and dad were also visiting at the same time so I got the chance to take some cute photos of Myfanwy with my dad. (Go and take a look at Myfanwy's photo page)
Myfanwy seemed to have a great time playing with Rich, at one point he was a monster that she had to hide from and a bit later on she decided to banish him to the naughty step! Well that taught him a lesson.
Taekwondo Xmas party
Today we had the much looked forward to Taekwondo Xmas party. This was the first party that has been organised by my Taekwondo group, and all in all it went really well. One of my Taekwondo mates wanted us all to get dressed up for the evening, which I wasn't keen on as I only have nice summer dresses - nothing suitable for this horrible cold weather. Luckily I managed to get away with wearing a nice top and a skirt.
The disco went down really well with both the kids and the adults. Once the adults had started dancing the kids didn't get a chance! Some of the blokes decided to do their patterns to the music which was great fun to watch. I even went up on the dance floor to try and follow along to the YMCA song (yup - that's me on the right dancing like a disco diva).
After filling up with party food and winning a prize on the raffle (we won some tasty Belgian chocolates) we all went home. There are more photos the evening on the Croydon Taekwondo web page here.
Work Xmas party
In a moment of madness I volunteered to organise a work Christmas party - and for the last month and a bit I've been worrying about it all going horribly wrong. Today was the day, and luckily everything seemed to go according to plan, even though there was a little bit of last minute panic.
About 25 people showed up in the end (roughly what was expected) and all of them seemed to have a pretty good time. There was lots of free food (plus mulled wine and minced pies) avaliable, games to play and live music provided by a couple of collegues.
The games avaliable were Giant Jenga, two Playstation dance mats (that's me on the left dancing!), a couple of music quizzies and the fantastic balloon wars. My favourite was balloon wars - you tie a balloon to your ankle and when everyone is ready try to pop the other balloons while keeping your own safe. It did get a little scary at one point though...
I didn't win any of the competitions but that wasn't important as I was just glad that it all seemed to go okay.
Early family Christmas
Thea and Marcus kindly offered to do an early Christmas meal for myself, Rich, Alex and Kathy - so we all rushed over to Kent for the day. Little Katie is getting really big now, she is very pretty, active and happy, and she still sticks her tongue out at.
Dinner was fantastic, we had a very tasty roast pork - with all the trimmings, and then there was a blazing Christmas pud for desert (it was alight for about 5 minutes!) After eating more than was sensible and playing lots with Katie we all headed back home on the train.
After admiring Rich's job of making me that LED pumpkin for Halloween I decided that I would like to have a go at soldering too. So for Christmas I bought a 3D christmas tree kit and Rich got a more complicated Santa in a sleigh kit.
After a lot of guidance from Rich and a little fighting with the soldering iron I managed to create a fantastic little flashing Christmas tree - which I'm very proud to say worked first time.
Rich has posted a video of his LED Santa kit on his blog - why not go and have a look, you should be able to find it on this page.