Monday, 24 December 2007

Christmas Eve

All round the world there are children getting their sacks ready for Santa tonight, if they've been good. Granddaughter Amelie is no exception - although her pack is pretty optimistic!

So on this night before Christmas a thought from us all, you too, about those many children who don't have a family this Christmas. Let's all see what help we can contribute to make a difference in 2008

Sunday, 23 December 2007

Piste galor. . .

Arrived at the French Alp's Three Valleys for Christmas and New Year with the family and as you see there is cms and cms of snow and, at this stage at least, not too many people. That's me right of the picture. It seems to me that I look more stylish the further away you get, but I'm enjoying every run that i can get to/down.

Everything is open - even the precipitate black runs are all bunny soft and fluffy (ish). . . .

Tomorrow crepes, waffles and chocolat rhum. Mmm

Friday, 21 December 2007


And just to confirm what time of year it is, here are daughter Juliette's wonderful, indefatigable, sparkling (literally today) form class 8L.

I am really looking forward to working with them at BETT in January 08. They have such excellent ideas. Have a good break 8L.

Christmas Cracker (ii)

Well she does look pretty festive all decked out with Christmas LEDs right to the masthead and that's a long way (see August post). Suddenly - and rather late to be honest - a lot of the St Katherine's crowd are all decked out (no pun intended) in lights and very festive it all looks. Stopped work tonight too, so holibobs are officilly here. Hurrah!

Wednesday, 19 December 2007

Film Awards

Just back from the BAFTA Film Committee and it is all getting exciting as we get near to the Awards - and all the associated parties. At this time off the year we are all frantically trying to watch EACH OF the nominated movies through a mix of DVDs and private showings - mostly it's best to see them on a large screen, but I've even watched a few on my iPod Touch this year. Also in families and colleges would-be-cinema- stars are making their own "60 seconds of fame" because like last year there will be awards for viewer generated content too. Have a go yourself!

Sunday, 16 December 2007

Cracking classroom

Cracker was visited by students from schools around Melton Mowbray as together we all design a project where they swap the best features of their schools with others from schools around the world. They all have an iPod Touch to do this on, and are busy over Christmas quizzing friends and family to see who their distant contacts might be (two each!)). After all this brainwork we lunched together on Pizza at the Dickens Inn.

I'd better tell X-yachts - maybe am IMX40 actually is the classroom of tomorrow! I wish!

Tuesday, 11 December 2007

Ironic or what!

I will rotate the photo later - sorry

At the BBC this morning to talk on Radio 4 about the government's vision for children in their Children's Plan (less testing and over protection, more play etc). To my absolute delight, in the BBC's foyer, is a REAL Dalek which I am all over of course having been a huge fan since childhood. Obviously.

But I was a bit surprised to discover a HEALTH AND SAFETY WARNING on its gun! (to be precise the warning was about the strobe light). In the context of the Today Programme's Children's Plan topic this is rich irony indeed.

"Exterminate!!!" - but first, "do-you-have-a-risk-assessment-form, please earthling?..."

Saturday, 8 December 2007

Frankfurt in Birmingham

For some five years now this Frankfurt Christmas market has been coming to Birmingham (they are twinned). So I find myself there this Friday at the end of a hectic week and simply lose myself in the mass of little craft stalls - like this one offering hand made wooden folk - from nested dolls to... well, you can see.

The market is popular with the stallholders who get to bring their children over to school here and immerse them in English at Christmas. Having been recently to a Polish market in Melbourne and a French market at home in Brightlingsea, (all with some very tasty produce) I can see that this is catching on. Yum!

Wednesday, 5 December 2007

Hang on, there's a restaurant sailing by. . .

Earlyish morning at St Katherine's by the Tower of London (I'm staying on the boat this week) and I'm rather surprised to see this floating restaurant being towed out into the Thames!

I'd always though the thing looked a big too leaky to go to sea - patches glued all over it and bits were falling off as she was towed out into the lock - you can see one patch at the waterline on her bow - but it turns out she was originally on station in Denmark as a lightship for 99 years and so a big part of their heritage. They are towing her off to the Medway - sounds a bit risky to me!! but it was slightly surreal to see a restaurant (for that is what she had become) being towed through the lock gates. Not sure the one chap with a tiny fender on a long string will help much once they get into the Thames though.

Whatever next...