Sunday, October 08, 2006

Here Be Dragons

The other night, Emily and Jon watched The Last Dragon on DVD (bought from Tesco for £1.97!!!!) and Emily was absolutely enthralled. Apparently this was originally shown on Channel 4 but we must have missed it. Basically, it's a spoof documentary about someone investigating dragons in the same way as they might investigate dinosaurs and finding all kinds of "evidence" to prove that dragons did exist, how they breathed fire, etc. Special effects done by those that worked on Harry Potter & The Prisoner of Azkaban, which kind of endeared it to us before it even began ;-)

So: despite the fact that we still haven't quite tied up the weather project, and that there are projects on Romans and on Rocks/Geology snapping at our heels to get started, we're apparently putting those on hold just a while longer to do a mini project on dragons and other mythical beasts. Should be fun.

Emily spent all day Thursday writing poetry, including a beautiful piece about the recipe for a green phoenix, which I guess wil fit nicely into this mythical beasts malarky. Poetry was appropriate since we later discovered, thanks to one of the fab calendar links provided by Elle, that either Thurs or Friday (I forget which now) was Poetry Day. Emily's art coursework came back on Thursday too, with a lovely letter from her tutor, very encouraging. She only has one more section to do in the course now, which is going to focus on abstract drawings, close up work and patterns. Hopefully it won't take as long to get through that final section as it did to get to grips with the perspective coursework!

On Friday we decided on the spur of the moment to have a Halloween Party on the 29th and shuffled off to The Range for some retail therapy in the form of buying some decorations and bits and bobs for it. No, we can't really afford it. But for one reason or another, life was getting all of us down on Friday, and planning a party had the desired cheering up effect. Emily also spent a lot of time doing random "stuff" on her computer - at least it looked random to me but it seems in the end to have been quite a lot of Harry Potter related research, some reading up about various subjects of interest and the unearthing of this website which is chockablock full of "dress up" type games for girlies everywhere. There's a particularly nice "create your own goddess" one on there somewhere too which explains the symbolism behind each part of various goddesses as you mix and match them.

Yesterday morning Emily went off to ballet. There was a new little girl starting, just arrived from Poland, who doesn't speak any English. I met her Mum in the corridor and Emily volunteered to look after Kate during the lesson. She took her in and introduced her to the teacher and some of the other girls, showed her what to do and where to put her things and generally made her feel welcome. The mum was really pleased and when I got back to pick Emily up Kate's mum told me that Emily had been wonderful to her little one and that she hoped the two girls could be good friends. Emily also learnt how to say hello and thank you in Polish ;-)

Emily and I brought Kayleigh home with us from ballet and after a quick lunch the girls spent hours creating a water gala for some of Emily's dolls, playing with the cats and building lego cities. They also baked a big batch of jam and marmalade tarts each, which they were very happy to polish off after their tea before Kayleigh took the rest of hers home for her brother and sisters to share.
This morning Emily's out at her karate lesson; this afternoon we've got an extra ballet lesson to go to and Emily also needs to get to grips with her latest yoga poses ahead of her level 5 test on Tuesday. Although everyone's recovered from the icky bug that brought us back from holiday early, Jon's caught a really bad cold from Grandad, so I guess it's only a matter of time. Emily's got a lot to do next week and she really can't afford to miss any of it, so we're holding out hope that she can stay well and either avoid this new lurgy or at least put it off a bit!

Last night I read Emily the final four chapters of Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince. She was stunned when Snape murdered Prof Dumbledore; she hadn't been expecting that at all. Last couple of chapters made me choke up a bit, tbh. I thought the parts about Draco Malfoy not being able to go through with the murder, despite being under threat of death from Voldermort, were well written, especially when Harry gradually begins to feel sorry for Draco. Emily's convinced that Snape is evil now. She's not buying into any of the theories about Dumbledore having arranged his own death and that he may have been pleading with Snape to keep his side of some pre-arranged thing, for Snape to go ahead and kill him rather than pleading for him NOT to kill him. I'm still erring on the side of Snape being working for good in the long run. I think it would be too simple for him just to turn out to be a cold blooded murderer after all the twists and turns his character has been through. Whether he murdered for his own aims or whether he was following Dumbledore's orders in some convoluted plan, it still looks like there's not many options left for poor old Snape now though, except a life on the run.

Guess we'll have to find something else to read now until the final book comes out! There's a huge pile of interesting looking books that Jon's been finding recently so I daresay story time will survive, Harry-less, until next summer....

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