A round of a claw – months 11 & 12, Feb and March 2014

A round of a claw – months 11 & 12, Feb and March 2014

Welcome to our Springtime Round of a Claw.

February was short, and half-term activities took up a lot of our energies. So, this time around, we’re offering you a two-months-for-the-price of-one edition of our milestones bulletin.

That’s not to say that February and March weren’t crammed with memorable moments. No siree.


sponsored walk

on our way to Victoria, to meet the rest of the Honkopoly gang

The London leg of Team Honk Relay for Sport Relief was Austin and Gwen’s first sponsored walk, and you can read more about it here and here. Despite Austin’s poorly-boy grumbles on the way home, both he and Gwen still  squeal with delight whenever I give in to their demands for me to let them watch the Honkopoly video.

The Team Honk Relay baton has just landed in John O’ Groats, the final destination on the cross-UK journey. London’s Honkopoly raised over £3,000, but altogether the national figure was an astonishing £31,000 (with a final surprise donation of £4,000 from the amazingly generous Tiger Feet Party). It feels good to have played a tiny part in such a colossal effort.

 World Book Day

Cat in the Hat

February and March have seen a leap in Austin’s development. He’s started to read. At our last parents’ evening, his pre-school teacher said that he would benefit from a little home practice with his phonics. And she was right: he was deeply excited about the prospect of being able to discover books for himself, and is now ALL OVER that Cat in a Hat (on a mat).

Which is lucky, as the Dr Seuss character of the same name was the one we chose for his World Book Day outfit. Recognise the top hat? Yes, it’s the Honkopoly classic, rehashed by Mum for WBD. I’m clearly becoming a pro at making cardboard and a load of masking tape look appealing, because Austin won an award for best-dressed boy in his class.

Proud beams all round…..



On St David’s Day, 1st March 2014, Austin played his first game of mini-rugby.

You saw it here first. We have high hopes for him, given that his Dad used to play semi-professionally, and I’m….well, I’m from Wales, so I ought to have rugby pulsing through my veins. But, like most team sports, the logic of the whole thing baffles me. I should probably swot up on it so I can cheer from the sidelines without embarrassing the poor lad by going on about goals and free kicks…oh, hang on, they have free kicks in rugby, too?

Ok, I’d better shut up about the whole rugby business now. Thankfully it’s D who gets to take him, not me. Austin talks about it all week, and according to D’s reports he’s already learning to give the coach a good runaround….

2014-03-22 11.35.07crop

Gwen’s birthday

Gwen at the zoo

This year, Gwen had a double celebration of two years on this planet. We invited a few of her little friends round for a surreptitious toddler-only gathering while Austin was at pre-school, the morning before her birthday. Then, on the big day itself, we hopped on the train and went to London Zoo.

New birthday coat. New helmet (worn as an accessory rather than a safety precaution). lions, tigers and funny-looking penguins. What better to raise a huge grin on the face of this newly two-year-old?

Happy birthday, gorgeous girl.

2014-03-14 11.23.32

Papier Mache

And finally…..our first papier mache attempt. I’m sure I must have done this as a child, because I felt some kind of residual glee while I was gluing and pasting the newspaper strips onto the balloons. It was fun; even better was Austin and Gwen’s excitement at taking their ‘dinosaur eggs’ along to pre-school, to show everyone.

Austin’s egg is currently incubating in a padded cardboard box; Gwen’s is lying in all its dented glory on her bedroom floor.

I daren’t get rid of either of them, in case the Mommy T-Rex eats me.

papier mache

dinosaur eggs, waiting to dry/hatch

Round of a claw (Austin’s interpretation of ’round of applause’) is my attempt to capture some highlights of Austin and Gwen’s time as youngsters. Each month I write a round-up of milestones and memorable moments. To read previous episodes, click here.

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  1. March 29, 2014 / 9:08 am

    What awesome moments! Love the Honkopoly idea!

  2. Jayne
    March 29, 2014 / 9:23 am

    Lots of lovely memories being made. I love Austin’s Cat in the Hat costume!

  3. March 29, 2014 / 4:03 pm

    You’ve all done some wonderful things recently! I’d forgotten about papier mache, maybe I should show my children how to do that soon 🙂 London Zoo is amazing, glad to hear it was enjoyed by all 🙂

  4. PinkOddy
    March 29, 2014 / 5:35 pm

    What an amazing month. Am loving the hats. Dinosaur eggs are a great idea for a papier mache project.

  5. AroundUpsideDown
    March 29, 2014 / 5:37 pm

    What fun – I feel pooped just reading about all those fun activities 🙂

    Your two are so cute – and they look so alike, little cherubs 🙂

  6. anna
    March 29, 2014 / 5:41 pm

    haha I love round of a claw for round of applause! How cute! Happy bday to Gwen, these are all such lovely memories

  7. March 29, 2014 / 6:28 pm

    Oh how cute does Gwen look in that pink helmet?!

  8. March 29, 2014 / 8:21 pm

    Oh my goodness your children are just too adorable!!!! Just love that she wore her cycle helmet as an accessory… too cute!!

  9. March 29, 2014 / 8:51 pm

    That’s a brilliant idea and a great way of remembering the fun things you get up to.

  10. March 29, 2014 / 9:17 pm

    This is such a wonderful idea and so nice that Austin and Gwen have these memories to look back on xxx

  11. March 30, 2014 / 12:31 am

    Aww happy birthday! Certainly lots of memories to treasure

  12. Kizzy
    March 30, 2014 / 7:11 am

    What a great post and a wonderful way to remember some great events!

  13. March 30, 2014 / 10:46 am

    Hharrr loving the pictures what fantastic good times .x

  14. March 30, 2014 / 4:00 pm

    Looks like you’ve all had a great time! Love their hats on the train for Honkopoly 🙂 x

  15. March 30, 2014 / 4:12 pm

    I love the Dinosaur eggs – my little boy would love this!

    Thanks for sharing x

  16. March 30, 2014 / 5:20 pm

    I love the cat in the hat costume he looks super cute!

  17. March 30, 2014 / 6:01 pm

    Such beautiful pictures. Lovely memories for you to cherish forever. That’s the most brilliant thing about blogging x

  18. March 31, 2014 / 12:19 am

    Awww – some really lovely moments – I love the picture of them in their Honkopoly hats – soo cute!

  19. March 31, 2014 / 7:46 am

    You’re right – February was here and gone – and now it’s practically April, scary huh! You look like you’ve had a busy springtime – what a great day to start playing Rugby, perhaps he’ll be running out at the Millennium Stadium one day! And I love the picture of Gwen on the tube – what a hppy two year old 🙂 #bloglove

  20. March 31, 2014 / 10:36 am

    What lovely photos , it looks like youve had a really fun month

  21. March 31, 2014 / 1:03 pm

    You busy lot! Such gorgeous photos – the whole post made me smile.

  22. April 1, 2014 / 10:37 am

    The Honkopoly idea was just amazing – I swear hubby has stolen it for a proposed stag night next year, although theres will be drink based rather than raising money for charity

  23. April 3, 2014 / 2:39 pm

    Happy Birthday Gwen! She’s got such a lovely smiley face, and her accessorising is of course impeccable! I love the repurposing of the Honkopoly hat for book day as well. Good thinking, Mummy…

  24. Dragonsflypoppy-White Feathers
    April 3, 2014 / 7:38 pm

    Nell this is a beautiful post. How cute cute cute is Gwen? Especially in that coat! And Austin looks so much older in the rugby pictures! My how they grow up! Good luck swotting up on rugby….xx

  25. April 3, 2014 / 7:31 pm

    So many lovely reasons to be proud. Loving that your boy has discovered reading – a whole new world suddenly at his fingertips. Happy Birthday to little Gwen, she looks like a cheeky little monkey 😉 x

  26. April 3, 2014 / 10:34 pm

    Wow, what a busy time and amazing highlights 🙂 Love the cat in the hat costume, and the helmet worn as an accessory! #loudnproud

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