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A few weeks ago one of my nephews, Geoff, said he’d really like to teach Esther to go camping. This excited me as I love camping, but haven’t yet been brave enough to do it solo with Esther.
We settled on a camping experience in the back yard and last Thursday Geoff came over. It was going to be a brisk night, (4 degrees and a bit of rain), but we had all that we needed to keep warm. We set the tents up and then lit a fire together. We taught Esther about how to light a fire safely and whilst I prepared the dinner, Esther and Geoff suspended usual dining rules (about sweets after dinner) to toast marshmallows on a huge stick they found in the garden.
Once ready, we cooked our marinated chicken skewers and vegetables on the fire and then messily ate outside, licking our fingers all the while: yum!
Then we all got into our warmest “jarmies,” took a bundle of books with us and hopped into our tents. A head-set with a lamp on and we were ready. After stories we bedded down for the night. After a little bit of wriggling, Esther went to sleep. I picked my jaw off the floor and went to sleep myself. The only weak moment came at 3am when Esther awoke with a sore leg from lying on ground. She cried “I don’t like camping!” “I need a band aid!” (I’m NOT getting out of a warm tent for a band aid when there’s no blood!). We worked it through, she went back to sleep and I had to wake her up in the morning, she was in such a deep! She woke telling me she wants to go camping again!
What took my breath away was that later in the day at Kinder group time, Esther stood up in front of the whole class and talked about her experience, right down to the texture of the marshmallows. This from a girl who never ever volunteers to do things up front. I was so proud. She has lined up her friends to come with us next time. Each time I collect her from Kinder, she tells me who wants to come today!
How often we can resist trying something new, or be in the middle
of it and want to slam on the brakes? But as Esther found, when we push through we find greater joy.
Love and blessings
A French celebration for our patron saint
On Sunday 15 July we celebrated St Silas Day with a French twist, the weekend also being the anniversary of Bastille Day.
A morning tea tres delicieux of mini-croissants, tarte au citron and pain au chocolat was followed by a short song recital by chanteuse Jeanne aka Jo, and then our collective memories of things French were put to the test with a mini-quiz of such brain-teasers as ' Hercule Poirot, the famous detective with the little grey cells, was A. French B. Belgian C. Swiss?'.
The celebration wound up with a selection of French songs such as Sur le Pont d'Avignon and Frere Jacques, taking many of us back to our school day French lessons, and concluded with a rousing rendition of La Marseillaise.
Vive la France! Vive St Silas!
National Church life survey
The results of the National Church Life Survey completed in late 2016 about the Parish are now available. Please download the file below.