While there are a number of parks in our immediate area, none of them can compare to Beddington in terms of smooth, flat pathways. Which is exactly what a young man practicing his balance bike needed!
So we made the short drive with to Beddington park and then Mum, Dad, and Grandma went for a walk while Flynn flew around the park on his bike.
I have to say, these balance bikes are an amazing tool. Kids learn all about needing a bit of speed so that they can lift their feet and the bike stays vertical. I suspect it’s going to be a very easy jump to riding a real bike when we make that step.
If you’ll excuse the “mid-construction” appearance of our house, here’s a video of our little man coming down the stairs on Christmas morning.
Pulls at your heart strings a bit when the first thing he does when faced with a mountain of new toys is to find and deliver his handmade gift to dad.
I didn’t take that many photos during the “unwrappening”, but suffice to say there were way too many gifts and he got everything he asked for. Which was simply “a cow with a train”. The initiated among us, which included Santa Claus, knew that this was a Brio farm train, and the very first thing he opened.
It has been really nice to have Grandma here this year to help celebrate Flynn’s first, real Christmas. By that I mean he was fully aware of Santa and what would happen on Christmas day, so it was fun to share in his excitement.
We had to set up the camera and take a few, rare family portraits as well. I even got up after Santa has been to take a few photos of the gifts he brought and to see the footprints he left behind.
We also read “Twas the night before Christmas
” as is tradition.
Flynn was fortunate enough to receive a very cool balance bike from his Auntie Lee-Ann who was visiting from Canada for a few days while touring Europe. They were kind enough to stay in our area while visiting the UK so we got to spend a bit of time with them before (and after) they jetted off (or trained off as the case may be) to see the continent.
Our little man was a huge fan from the get go, but still has a lot of practicing to do.
It was a perfect autumn day for learning to ride though. Beats getting a bike for Christmas and having to learn to ride it through 2 feet of snow (or so I hear)!
On top of learning to push a bike, he’s also learning to propel himself on the big-kids swing. The learning never stops!
Our local shopping centre has installed a small skating rink in one of their closed down shops for the festive season. Flynn and I watched a few skaters on Saturday and he continually asked if we could go for the rest of the day, so I knew what our plans were going to be on Sunday.
We booked the tickets and headed over there early on to avoid the crowds we saw in the late afternoon. We both picked up our skates along with our “dolphin-sleigh” for Flynn to ride on. Once our allotted time began we headed out onto the ice. I started by just holding his had as he was pretty excited about trying to stake, but I think when the slippery reality set in he simply wanted to be pushed around on the dolphin.
We had a lot of fun and as I discovered years and years ago, the UK is not big on ice skating so it’s one of the few times that my meager skills (by Canadian standards) on the ice can really shine.
And a quick video of us skating together as well.
We skated for the full hour and the first question the little man asked post skate was “why we have to stop?”, so we’re clearly going again next weekend!
Our nightly ritual has me reading Flynn stories until he falls asleep. There’s nothing earth shattering here, just a sweet photo of our little cherub.
Our little man is three already! It’s amazing how fast the time flies looking back on it. I’ve heard it poetically said that the nights are long, the years are fast and I think about that a lot even in these early stages of Flynn’s life. Some days seem to drag, especially if he’s sick or having trouble sleeping (and that’s me saying it, Danni bears the brunt of these days so I can only imagine her opinion of it), but it genuinely feels like it’s only been 8 or nine months since we first brought him home.
But enough lamenting, this was a happy day for everyone! We actually had a really quiet one this year though, just the immediate family. Flynn had just returned from China a couple of weeks previous and our home was/is in mid-refurbishment so we were both strapped for funds and unable to host a party at home. Still, we had a lovely day and spoiled Flynn as is customary on his birthday.
We spent the morning at home opening and playing with gifts, then we headed out to a lovely lunch (thanks to Danni’s parents!) followed by an afternoon at the soft play, and finally a lovely dinner and birthday cake at home. Danni had special ordered a custom cake from a local baker and it was incredible!
Next up is Christmas and he’s already begun building his list for Santa…
You might be asking “how can this be his first Halloween when he’s almost 3 years old now?”. How very astute of you. For the first two Halloween’s of his little life, Flynn was either a) living in a house that was impossible for trick-or-treaters to find (and probably too young) or b) in China. This year, after moving into our new house, we were inundated with trick-or-treaters and grandma had thoughtfully sent Flynn a costume a few weeks earlier so it was finally a full on Halloween.
Flynn helped give out candy all night to the zombies, ghosts and witches and we even crossed the road to our neighbour’s so he could do some candy soliciting himself.
We’ll be better prepared for the numbers next year as I had to make a dash to the corner shop for treats and we actually ran out on the final group of the evening. We’ll also likely have to take Flynn to a few more doors next time; I’m not sure he’ll be satisfied by a single fun-sized chocolate bar for the year…
It’ll be hard pressed to beat his Spider-Man costume though!
Flynn and Danni are off to China for ~7 weeks to look after Danni’s mom who was injured in a car accident a couple of months ago. I’ll be staying home and overseeing the remodeling work at the house (which is a fancy way of saying we’re re-plastering everything and putting in a new heating system).
I drove them both to the airport and Flynn and I found a great spot to watch the airplanes taxi and take off while Danni queued to check in.
We watched planes for about a half hour before we needed to meet Danni at the check-in counter. Then it was time for our misty good-byes while they boarded the flight and I made the journey home to a very quiet, empty house (at least until the construction started).
On the first Saturday of every month Flynn and I go to a local church where they host a monthly “dads and kids” day. It’s a play group like any other, and despite being in a church there are no religious overtones or hymns that are sung or anything like that. It’s just a collection of dads taking their kids out (and presumably giving mom at home a rest).
We’ve gone to a few now, and on warm days in the summer they actually have a decent outdoor play area. Flynn was enamored with construction vehicles and the patch of dirt in the back corner. While everyone else was having snacks, I couldn’t get him to leave his dirt. The boy loves his construction vehicles…