June – you were pretty epic.
Girls trip in Paris, Liz & Eric visiting Aberdeen, Efteling with the Bach/Morris clan, Brooke & Michael’s visit, and all wrapped up with a night out for a friend’s 40th birthday. Whew! The kids weren’t the only ones living their best lives this month!
Brooke & Michael
Brooke and Michael roared into Aberdeen on the north-bound train from Edinburgh. Mia and I picked them up at the train station. Mia, of course, was under the impression that she would be getting ON the train, not just viewing one from a distance, so there was a bit of a meltdown on the way back to the car.
I had big plans to take Brooke and Michael to see the seals at Newburgh Beach, New Slains Castle, and wrap it all up with a cliffside walk to see the puffins. Mia, however, had other plans. Both kids were gifting us with near peace – playing nicely upstairs in Brooks’ room together. He took hold of her hands to pull her up onto his bed. He heard a pop and then Mia started screaming. She was holding her arm and was not comforted regardless of what we did. I had experienced this before – just about exactly a year ago. I was pretty sure it was nursemaid’s elbow but with the continued screaming we had to make a run for the emergency room.
Let me tell you what a feeling it was to go to the emergency room – specifically for children – or the A & E as they call it here – and not worry about the massive bill we were going to be hit with at the end. We would have still gone if we were in the states but the stress of wondering what kind of bill we were racking up combined with the cortisol raising screams from Mia would have just exhausted us.
In the end, both nurses and doctors tried to pop her tendon back in place but with no luck. With no reason to believe that there was a break or a fracture, we were sent away with instructions for ibprofen dosage. Leaving the A&E we felt like we were doing a dine and dash. We kept waiting for someone to pop out from behind a corner with a cash register asking for payment.
Once we got home, there was just enough time left to whisk Brooke and Michael to Newburgh Beach to see the seals and climb some of the tallest sand dunes in the UK.
Saturday morning Brett stayed home to nurse Mia and her elbow. They had a nice quiet day on the couch while Brooke, Michael, and I had Brooks’ CONSTANT running commentary about everything we saw on our way to Dunnottar, at Dunnottar, and on the way home. They did make it into the cave to check for the existence of sea bears. Sorry, Eric. No evidence still.
That evening we made the trek out to New Slains Castle and the Bullers of Buchan to try to catch a glimpse of some puffins. Brooks had seen the pictures I’d taken of puffins a couple weeks back and being the little nature lover he is – was devastated that I was considering another trip there without him. So, we struck a bargain that he would have to wear Mia’s backpack with an attached leash and be on his absolute best behavior the whole time. The walk to the cliffs where the puffins come to perch at dusk is no joke. It is literally a small, but well-worn foot path on the edge of a cliff. There is very little room for silliness and error.
Sunday Mia’s arm was better but still bothering her so Brett took her back to the A&E where she got a little sling for her arm – giving her what she always wants – complete attention from EVERYONE. She didn’t totally need it but it made all us feel better emotionally that we had done something for her even if there wasn’t really anything to do. It certainly didn’t prevent her from joining us from going to the fairy glen in the Muir of Dinnet! Naturally both kids were wet by the time we left. This time Mia really got soaked though – hence her lack of pants in some pics.
Monday morning brought flights home for Michael and Brooke. We loved having them visit us and have really enjoyed our influx of visitors that accompanied the warmer weather and end of school. If you’re reading this and considering visiting, don’t hesitate to come in the winter! There were weeks in February that were warmer than days in June and airfare is so much less expensive. Plus, Scotland is magical at any time of year – but sometimes when temps hit mid-seventies, decidedly less magical as no one has AC.
End of School Year
Monday also brought Brooks’ end of school year ceremony and Mia’s end of school year party – where she promptly lost her sling once she realized how limited it made her. You can’t win a dance competition if your arm is in a sling. Although, she does predominately use her lower body for her signature moves.
Brooks’ end of school ceremony was ADORABLE. P2 – P4 sang several songs where no photography or videoing was allowed. It was a lovely way to close out the end of the school year.
Both kids have grown so much this year! Brooks is becoming a confident reader and absolutely loves maths. Mia is a talking machine. I don’t know if this is a good or bad thing. I’ve been so impressed with the quality of instruction, observation and recording from staff at both the main school and the nursery. I’m hoping to spend some time observing in classrooms next year to watch their processes and procedures.
One academic year in Aberdeen down! Coming up on one calendar year in Aberdeen under our belts! I’m sure that there will be an overly dramatic post coming about how much we’ve learned and changed in our time here. Stay tuned. 😉