Friday, 18 July 2014

Week 29 #WotW

The Reading Residence








I am bursting with pride for my (not so) little (now) man. This past academic year has been long and intense. There have always been ups and downs through the years but this has just been off the scale. Like being on the worst roller coaster imaginable with no seatbelt. When I look back, I really don't know how we got through it. I am so proud of the Chief. His strength, resilience and trust in me never ceases to amaze me. We have moved through mega public meltdowns, hating school, zero self esteem and living like hermits to a point where he is happy to go to school without me. He is not only enjoying school again, he is doing amazingly well academically too.
His mainstream school invited us to their Year 6 leaving mass earlier this week and, even though it was at the end of a really busy day for us, the Chief was keen to go along. It was so lovely to see him chat to his old school friends and teachers. His confidence really has come on leaps and bounds.

September marks the start of a new exciting chapter for the Chief as he begins high school but for now we can breathe a huge sigh of relief, relax a little and enjoy the summer break.



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Thursday, 17 July 2014

♫ Thoughts of you, warm my bones ♫





Lisa Hannigan ~ Ocean And A Rock







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Monday, 14 July 2014

86.Try glass blowing

Following on from my last post,  the Chief and I spent Thursday afternoon at The World of Glass. We were there for a glass blowing taster session but we also had a mooch around the museum, exhibitions and galleries. The Chief loved the mirror maze, glass demonstration and tunnels and we were both delighted to see the Clare Island Lighthouse optic. Be sure to take the time to watch the film show that runs after the glass blowing demonstration. It runs through the history of glass making and explains the technique that made St Helens the market leader.

The glass blowing taster session lasts around 15 minutes. You have the choice to make either a Paperweight or a Friendship ball/bauble. I had made a deal with the Chief that he could take his pick and I would go for the other option and annoyingly obviously he went for the bauble, which is what I really wanted to do boohoo ;-),  I kept my side of the bargain though and you can see my lovely Paperweight below. Like the rest of the staff at the World of Glass, the resident glass blowers were really friendly and helpful. The session was great fun and very informative. We will definitely be back for another try, hopefully for one of the half day sessions.




The World of Glass St Helens

Glass blowing The World of Glass St Helens

Glass blowing The World of Glass St Helens

Glass blowing The World of Glass St Helens

Glass blowing The World of Glass St Helens
The World of Glass St Helens

Paperweight The World of Glass St Helens



Goals Completed: 60/101



The World of Glass St Helens

The World of Glass St Helens
World of Glass St Helens

World of Glass St Helens

World of Glass St Helens

chandelier from Manchester airport World of Glass St Helens




World of Glass St Helens

World of Glass St Helens

World of Glass St Helens

World of Glass St Helens
Tunnels World of Glass St Helens

Tunnels World of Glass St Helens

World of Glass St Helens

ghostly apparition World of Glass St Helens



World of Glass St Helens

World of Glass St Helens

World of Glass St Helens












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Saturday, 12 July 2014

Week 28 #WotW


The Reading Residence














The Chief and I took advantage of the National strike on Thursday and headed over to St Helens. St Helens has an impressive history revolving around two main industries; Glass and Coal. I had booked us in for a glass blowing session at the World of Glass in the afternoon so we spent the morning mooching around the old Sutton Manor Colliery site to visit the Dream sculpture. Unveiled in 2009 Dream is the result of a collaboration between artist Jaume Plensa, a focus group of former miners and Channel 4's Big Art project.
I've visited her once before on a drizzly day in 2010 and said then that I wanted to return and see her surrounded by blue skies to see if 'the feel of her' changes with the weather. The atmosphere definitely felt lighter up there on Thursday. Comparing the two did make me appreciate how bright she stands, even in grim weather. She literally has a sparkle to her as she's made of a crushed marble and concrete mix that glimmers in the light. It's not hard to imagine the importance of light to miners. The comfort it must bring.
Dream was originally supposed to have a beam of light shooting out of her head two kilometres up into the night sky. It was to represent the girl's dreams, hopes and wishes whilst also symbolising the colliery's former mine shaft. Personally I'm glad that this didn't go ahead as I think from a distance she looks a bit too phallic to be ejaculating light into the sky :-S
It's a very peaceful place and it was lovely to see lots of people sitting around her; families picnicking, runners, dog walkers, people just contemplating and enjoying life. I suppose that's the best way to honour the memory of the miners and the history of the area.


Memories by Brian Salkeld Sutton Manor Coal Mine




Sutton Manor Colliery Gates

Sutton Manor Dream St Helens

Dream St Helens Sutton Manor poem Coal Miners
Dream Sutton Manor Miners Coal poem

Sutton Manor coal miners poem bench


Dream St Helens Sutton Manor


Dream St Helens Sutton Manor

Dream St Helens Sutton Manor

Dream St Helens Sutton Manor selfie


Dream St Helens Sutton Manor

Dream St Helens Sutton Manor

Dream St Helens Sutton Manor

Dream St Helens Sutton Manor

Dream St Helens Sutton Manor

Dream St Helens Sutton Manor

























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