Xmas and New Year

We spent Christmas in Erie, PA, where the temperature and the snow depth fluctuated wildly over the course of 10 days. We got there just before a big dump, as it were, and 6 days later it was 60 degrees at 10pm.

Anyway we had a lot of fun, ate and drank a lot as per usual and the kids loved spending time with their cousins. At one point in the house we had 7 adults and 7 kids staying there; it’s easier when you’re not outnumbered. I put some pics on the site here and there’s a great sequence of her singing a song from High School Musical (don’t ask me which number) on the outdoor sound stage that is Grandpa & Grandma’s front porch, feeling the emotion of each line in the lyric, until her brother comes along and tackles her.

Here’s a taster of the performance:

The holidays

So it was quite a long time spent in the UK and quite packed. Among the highlights:

The kids went to their first panto – Snow White & the Seven Dwarfs at Wimbledon Theatre with their cousin Charlie, and all loved it…. Alvin & the Chipmunks was checked off the list (thanks to Uncle Rob!), while Mom & Dad went to see Fulham lose to Chelsea (maybe Alvin was a better option)… the week before all four of us sat through (perhaps the best description) Fulham’s draw with Wigan…two days before that the kids had met some of the players, last in the line was the American international Clint Dempsey, I urged the kids to tell him where they had just arrived from the day before, the lad went a tad mute at this point, but she edged close to the table and said quietly, in her cutsey voice “New York City,” which he liked. They’d had a bad day as the manager had been fired only hours before, we subsequently learned. Here he is talking to her, unfortunately out of shot:

The kids and Sally went to Paris for a couple of days to visit Uncle John and Thierry; it was supposed to be three days but was shortened by Dad’s inability to move due to a dodgy back.

And the highlight for me, at least through family connections (Uncle Brian is a retired forest ranger), Charlie & his mum and Miles and me ventured out in an old Land Rover on New Year’s Day evening after dark to feed the deer in Richmond Park. It’s not something the public gets to see, and was something I’ll never forget, driving the park in the pitch dark while Brian threw feed out to the deer as the clustered round us, waiting for their winter supplement.

Here’s a screenshot from the video that night:

Overall, Miles especially enjoyed being with his cousin Charlie, here they are in Hyde Park: