I’m saying Pfft! to going anywhere, and curling up by the heater for some Olympic action!  

You see we’ve hit that winter patch where it all feels a bit boring…  cold grey mornings,  remembering to turn on electric blankets, cramming small folk into jackets and hats in the morning, then haranguing them at 3pm to pick them all up from the cloak room floor.

Even on the clear blue sky days you close the curtains at 4.45pm to ‘keep the heat in.’  The washing pile multiplies due to the number of layers each person wears, and the minimal drying days available, which turns your lounge into a drying room, with clothes horses blocking your view of the tele, and small children, pent-up from not enough out side time, play dive bomb off the couch onto the beanbag, and in the process destroy a half hours worth of folding and sorting.

Ah yes, joyful July.  It’s the month when the rain likes to fall horizontally, and you turn into your parents when the sun peaks out, demanding your children go outside and get some sunshine.  Vitamin D is what you need, you say, and some peaceful quiet to restore your sanity.

It’s always at this time of year I start scanning the travel websites, dreaming of days on white sand beaches, balmy nights under starry skies… this year we came seriously close to booking, but the reality is Aidan’s arm takes priority this winter – so we’re not going anywhere….

But just when I wanted to dive under the duvet, I’ve had my spirits lifted… for the London Olympic Games have started this weekend, and in place of  a vacation – an Olympic-ation has risen up, filling my family with smiles and laughter and enthusiasm.

 Let the games begin…

We started early on Saturday morning with pancakes and Milo.  A last-minute invitation saw us throw on our dressing gowns and zip up the hill to my sister’s house, were we watched the opening ceremony and marveled at the magic on the screen!

Isabelle loved the NHS segment with the glowing duvets, Ashton thought the castles coming out of the ground (the chimneys in the industrial revolution) were really weird, and loved the doves on bicycles.

I thought the Queen and Bond were brilliant, and Mr Bean stole the show, as he does so well!

Then the teams started rolling into the stadium and I was struck with how Isabelle has stepped so easily into my childhood shoes, as she waited impatiently for the seemingly endless stream of countries from A to M to get a hurry up, taking in their different uniforms and flags, until finally Nick Willis appeared with the New Zealand flag and our team were officially welcomed to the 2012 Olympic games.


Yes chickens, I did take photos of the television.




The Olympic flame was pretty awesome, especially since we’d been speculating on what those vase things were that came in with each team.  The lads suggested they were the team funnels, for the drinking games later on, but I think their joining together to form one Olympic flame in the centre of the stadium was pretty fabulous!


Time for a work out…

Of course less than 12 hours later, we were on, and so has begun a channel surfing extravaganza.  The sky magazine, which lets be honest here, hardly ever makes it out of its plastic sleeve, and usually only so I can separate the two for the recycling, has a new-found purpose.  The kids have been highlighting and circling the sports they want to see, and with simultaneous broadcast on different channels, we are working on our negotiation skills.  Gymnastics or Rowing?  Handball or Beach Volley Ball?

All eyes are on London, and a fair bit of “I’ve been there,” is coming from those who have “been there.” …. okay so it’s me.  I’m constantly showing off, which is good fun and the kids don’t seem to mind – yet!

I like a bit of equestrian, and the rhythmic gymnastics and the synchronised swimming.  Of course this causes all kinds of discussions about what actually constitutes a sport… my little brother suggested Synchronised Equestrianism might be entertaining, but I’m not sure Mark Todd can swim.

Image: FreeDigitalPhotos.net

So for the next couple of weeks we’re in a sort of alternate universe where the before school rules will be relaxed to allow toast on the couch while watching football, and tooth brushing is done with speed between the diving and the table tennis.

It’ll be just like the school holidays, only at 9am the kids will go to school, and I’ll get the tele all to myself!

Let my Olympic-action… begin!