Fluttering Around Butterfly World, St. Albans

So today while Kyler was busy doing his rehearsals the girls and myself decided to head over to Butterfly World in St. Albans, we had tickets to go last year but never got around to going!

The weather was a bit fresh and quite wet, so after folding up the bouncy castle we headed over to St. Albans armed with coats, jumpers and boots ready to do battle with the elements, by the time we made it to Butterfly World the sun was shining but it was still quite fresh out there so we parked up the car, grabbed our coats and headed in.

After a quick toilet stop we headed into the first hut which is completely dedicated to leaf cutter ants, it’s pretty well setup in there, with the leafs required to keep them ants busy busy and a good round trip filled with obstacles back to their nest, the ants were minding their own business taking care of every day business in almost military precision, extremely fascinating to watch indeed!

Next up was a hut with all sort of other insects, including various praying mantis, scorpions, cockroaches and all sorts of other interesting bugs, some of which the kids were allowed to handle, and some that the staff members gleefully told us can’t be handled because they like to bite and bite hard, nasty!!

So the real hut we came to see was the butterfly hut, not quite as big as you imagine considering the place is called Butterfly World, but still full of beautiful butterflies and HUGE moths, and pretty much as soon as you walk in you find yourself ducking and diving as butterflies flutter around you, and if you are lucky landing on your head and hands in my case on my leg.

The girls loved watching these amazing insects flutter around and even managed to handle quite a few, question is why are these beautiful animals only in this world for such a small time, approximately 2 weeks as an adult and their main purpose is to breed!!

After spending quite a bit of time in with the butterflies there was just a little bit of time left before we had to head off to pick up the boy (Kyler) so we went back to the insect area where there was a lady doing face painting and the girls got their face painted, Daizee-Mai was a pretty butterfly (what else!) and Jaycee wanted to be different and had some flowers painted.

After the faces were painted we headed outside where there’s a pretty big play area with some pretty amazing equipment including a very large ant sculpture, you can see how small the girls look next to it!

All in all a pretty good few hours out especially if you like bugs and butterflies, probably wouldn’t advise paying full price in the summer, we think it’s a little pricey at that rate but well worth it out of main season or if you have Tesco Clubcard points you want to use!

Feeding Our Feathered Friends in Fairlands Valley , Stevenage

It was such a lovely sunny day I thought we shouldn’t miss the opportunity to go and feed our little feathered friends in Fairlands Valley, Stevenage with the two younger girls, we were heading over to Stevenage anyway to drop Kyler off for rehearsals.

Kyler has been doing rehearsals for the impending Charlotte’s Web play at the Gordon Craig theatre since Monday, albeit he only got there for a part day on Monday as we got the wrong dates and had to drive to get him from Southend where he had gone with his sisters and Uncle John and Mandy for the day, which was the absolute worst day that could have happened, the traffic was gridlock both ways, anyway I digress, Kyler needs to get to Stevenage for 10am so as I am still on holiday and Paula was at work and Jaydan was out at a friend’s house I had to take him, Daizee-Mai and Jaycee with me to Stevenage.

After dropping Kyler off myself and the girls headed into Tesco to grab some bread for our imminent feather friend feeding trip, some bananas to keep us fueled and randomly some wind up chattering teeth as Jaycee found a broken one on the floor outside the shop and wanted one, the things you do eh, we also had to nip into B&Q as I needed a new lock for my locker at the gym, my other one broke!

So once we did all that we headed to Fairlands Valley, parked up, grabbed our bread and in Jaycee’s case her wind up teeth and headed off to the water areas, there was lots of races up and down the path as we walked, we stopped for some pictures with the daffodils and other picture opportunities before eventually getting to the first water area, there were a few Canadian geese and a few pairs of Mallards so we split the bread up and started feeding, Daizee-Mai got so into it that she lost all awareness of where she was standing so when I looked up from the camera I noticed she was actually standing in the water! never mind…

We carried on walking round and found the next area with more feathered friends, this time, Canadian geese, more Mallards, white geese, swans and moorhens, there was even a Heron watching and waiting high up in the trees, Daizee-Mai was a little more unsure here as there were so many birds that really didn’t seem to fear us, apart from the white goose hissing at us, that they were mobbing us for our bread, so she stuck pretty close to me, there was one funny goose that was very inquisitive and was not camera shy one bit!

After feeding the birds we headed to the climbing frames right next to the biggest area of water where they sail and do bigger water sports, the girls enjoyed jumping about and doing the circuit over and over asking for help in the higher areas.

All in all a great day and the girls real enjoyed themselves together, normally they fight like cat and dog but I guess that’s just siblings for you!!

Kyler Hits The DOJO For The First Time

Having done karate at the Buntingford Karate Club for the best part of 4 years myself naturally the kids see me practicing at home and all want to do the same, so today was the first day Kyler got to hit the DOJO to start the Karate basic training course!

So we had a few kits already and after a fitting session the day before with a little guidance on how to wear it properly and tie the belt, Kyler was pretty eager tonight and when I got home he was dressed and ready to go, it must be the most eager I have seen him for quite a while.

On the way there I think he was quite nervous, he didn’t really know what to expect, I think he thought Sensei Bill was a mean guy that was just going to shout at him, but actually before he started Bill sat him down and explained everything to him and said that if after 5 weeks he didn’t want to carry on that was OK so I think that put Kyler at ease.

First things first are exercise to get warmed up, Kyler stepped inline alongside the rest of the club and he participated in the warm-up with a little guidance here and there, once the warm-up was complete Kyler split off from the rest of the club and went to basic training.

So Sensei Sue takes the beginner course and she it extremely amiable and this put Kyler at ease even further, before long he was standing inline and performing “Yoi” which is a preparatory position ready to move to the next position whatever is called by the sensei taking the class.

Kyler was a natural and picked this up VERY quickly, no doubt all of his dancing skills were very helpful, he actually moved with amazing grace considering it was his first time he looked more in control than some of the adult white belts I have seen come through the club, including myself, before long he was moving across the floor with the standard sweeping karate walk, performing gedan barai (downward block), mawat-te (turning), tsuki (punch) and age-uke (rising block).

Kyler loved his first session in the DOJO and was really keen to show his Mum all the cool things he learned, he even managed to perform the moves respond to the Japanese instructions, pretty impressive, roll on the next lesson you will be black belt before you know it… Os!!

Kyler Got The Part In Charlotte’s Web: 15-19th April 2015

Well as you may know from my last post about Kyler’s recent audition for a part in the upcoming Chartlotte’s web play at the Gordon Craig Theatre in Stevenage we were awaiting a call to see if he got a part or not, we were told we would be called on Friday but we got that call today and yes you guessed it… Kyler got the part!!

So apparently they absolutely loved Kyler and said how he was cheeky and would absolutely love to offer him a part, we’re not entirely sure what the part is yet but we will update this post when we find out.

Looking at the schedule, rehearsals and show dates take up ALL of Easter holiday and they look to be some pretty loooooong grueling days so somebody is going to be very tired indeed, but oh so much fun, Kyler was obviously elated and couldn’t wait to tell everybody, he’s going to do well, maybe he’s a star in the making… we shall see!

Audition Time – Charlotte’s Web @ Gordon Craig Theatre

Today was audition day for Kyler who was put forward by Dance Jam Academy to audition for a part in the upcoming Charlotte’s Web musical at the Gordon Craig Theatre which will be performed at Easter (15th-19th April).

charlottes-web-gordon-craig-theatre

So the day started pretty early, up at 7.30am, which OK isn’t that early but on the day of rest, Sunday, is earlier than one would usually be up, not really helped out by lots of illness doing the rounds, Paula being particularly bad!!

So it was a swift hair wash, panic about what clothes to wear, breakfast, getting everything together, compounded by the fact that Jaycee wanted to hitch along for the ride, thank god Daizee-Mai wasn’t awake or there would have been lots of complaints and begging to come along too and into the car the three musketeers went on our way to auditions!

So we parked the car where Daddy usually parks for work and walked to the Gordon Craig Theatre which is actually pretty much the same daily walk I do anyway without the resulting train journey and mayhem in London. When we got to the Gordon Craig Theatre we registered and found a spot to sit down and wait to be called through, we were about 20 minutes early (Daddy is obsessed with punctuality) so there was a small wait, but soon enough the time came and off Kyler went with a whole load of other auditionees…

So while Kyler was auditioning we had a good few hours to kill, so off Jaycee and I went to start what I was yet to realise was going to be an expensive day… so highly unusually (Not!!) Jaycee was hungry so first stop was Maccy D’s for breakfast, I had a breakfast wrap and Orange juice, Jaycee settled for pancakes and orange juice!

Then it was off around the shops, first stop was Primark to see if we could find Jaycee some boots, but couldn’t, then we headed to Game where we picked up a few new games for the Xbox One, Skylanders Swap Force with a portal of power and a swap force character and Lego Marvel Super Heroes then to Costa coffee for my much needed coffee, gotta love Costa, and picked up some cakes (naughty I know but I’ll be smashing it on the gym tomorrow and every morning as ever!) and then a slow walk back to the theatre just in case Kyler was finished early, which it turned out he wasn’t.

So after a good wait around out they all came and we were all informed that decisions would be made on Friday so now we wait for the decisions, inside information from Chloe (Who was also auditioning) Jaydan’s friend was that Kyler was “AMAZING”, so fingers crossed our cheeky little chappy will get a part in the show, will post about it if he does.