25 November, 2009

Sorry for lack of updates...

Sorry for lack of updates...
Originally uploaded by finkangel.

...having a lovely time, out at the Cotswolds wildlife park today! More later :)

19 November, 2009

Yay! Holiday!

Really looking forward to next week now, got the whole thing booked off as holiday and Flyingpops has managed to bag us a bargain cottage in the lovely little village of Northleach in the Cotswolds (apparently the town centre is largely unchanged since the 1500s)...!

Anyone been to the Cotswolds and can suggest anything good we can go and do near Cirencester?

18 November, 2009

Lego House Demolished

James May Lego House Demolition 5
Originally uploaded by

Lego House Demolition 4
Originally uploaded by

Just found these pictures on Flickr and thought it only fair to share...so there we go, full circle...it's funny to think it was only there for such a tiny amount of time and now gone forever!

Anyway, if you want to see some of my pictures and read about it being built (and our other adventures around Denbies), head in this direction...

17 November, 2009

Christmas at Canary Wharf

Canada Square Ice Rink
Oh it's definitely getting close now, the Ice rink is back (which Flyingpops is starting to make noises about wishing to come up and skate on), they had their gala opening during a torrential downpour late last week -
Cabot Square Shopping at Christmas
- Cabot square mall is all decked out in it's Christmas finery -
Canary Wharf Christmas Tree
- yes, the same stuff as the last few years (some of it even having been dusted down), complete with the (oh so festive) signage that shocked me so much when I first started working around here...just waiting for the maintainence guys to fix the little white lights on the trees around Carluccios and the picture will be complete...!

Can't help but feel though that the whole texture of Christmas is going to go through a very rapid alteration over the next couple of years, now that little Thomas is with us! Making me feel very excited indeed at the prospect...! ;)

16 November, 2009

Three month old baby - nappy habits

Playing on Chick Mat
Disclaimer - If you are grossed out by the very thought of dealing with dirty nappies, then please look away now, this is a frank account of my experiences so far...

What I always imagined was going to be a fairly simple and unexciting maintenance aspect of enjoying time with the "cute" portion of my beloved Thomas (i.e. the end that smiles and makes "Ah goo" noises, the end that over the weekend uttered an adorable chuckle in generous exchange for a simple gesture of mine, quite unworthy of such praise, in my opinion)...Yes - the nappy, and contents thereof - has actually turned out to be an unexpected source of some considerably unpleasant shock and dismay...

In the first few days, just after Thomas had been born, even though his little tummy was the size of a walnut and he was only drinking a handful of millimeters a sitting, his tiny nappies were pretty regularly filled with a substance that resembled overcooked broccoli, albeit broccoli that had been all mashed up with a good French grain mustard - it was a bit nasty and rather sticky (roughly the consistency of bovril) requiring a good clean with warm water and cotton wool balls...I suppose this lasted about two weeks, a little bit worrying to be cleaning something literally green from around your babies bottom, but as the nurses didn't seem to be grabbing him out of our arms and running towards a doctor, we just sort of went with it...

Weeks three to five things suddenly got very dangerous indeed, I can remember draping muslins down my front (in the fashion of a diner tucking in his napkin before a fine meal), and with a look of grim determination preparing 5 baby wipes, setting a white flannel within easy grasp, pre-opening both the new nappy (ready to rush into position) and the E45 pot, taking a deep breath and then (as fast as possible) - undoing the old nappy, folding the front down out of the way, grabbing Thomas' feet in an attempt to stop them going into the poo (and failing), grasping for the white flannel to stop him peeing in his face, my fingers finding empty air as he knocks it onto the floor with a flailing arm, starting to cry as the wee gets in his eyes...fumbling for a baby wipe to try and do the job instead as poo then squirts out in a two meter long arc from Thomas' squirming bottom missing the muslin and going all over my trouser leg, socks and the carpet...wishing I had two more pairs of hands and finally yelling out in panic for Flyingpops to come and rescue me (as Thomas is sick all over his baby grow)...

Thankfully, this stage didn't last terribly long...the new "normal" is for him to save up all the poo for an entire week (every nappy is just wet and heavy), until suddenly he scares the absolute hell out of us by crying like he is about to expire in burning agony and then refusing to breathe for two minutes while we contemplate how quickly we can get to the hospital if we choose not to bother wasting time putting shoes on, just hauling open the front door with half a coat dragging on the floor, when suddenly there is an almighty blast of flatulence and his nappy line explosively expands by about 3 inches...followed by a happy "Ah Goo" and Mum and Dad exchanging looks containing equal amounts of relief and reluctant resignation...

Fink sends a pleading glance towards heaven...

Fade to black...

13 November, 2009

Finks Links #81

It's Friday! It's Link time -

So let's start with an English church, rebuilt in Japan (at the top of a skyscraper)... [pics]

Meet PETMAN, BigDog's two-legged brother [video]

Well I could have told them that!

The great vodka tragedy of 2009 (or more forklift fun) - although you probably already saw this in the news [video]

Improved arm mounted flame thrower...

Colour footage of London from 1927 -or- Fancy seeing London without all the skyscrapers! [video]

How Mr Q manufactured emotion...

Miscatonic Valley Fine Art...

...and finally a great safety fail...

More (with luck) next Friday...! :)

11 November, 2009

Baby Thomas playing with his mobile

Hehe...not *hugely* acurate (yet), but obviously having soooooo much fun even just trying to interact...!

I could watch him do that for hours... ;)

Although it's not *all* such hard work -
Thomas and Tigger napping

10 November, 2009

Bonfire Party

Getting the fires lit
So on Saturday night we headed over to Flyingpops folks to join in celebrating Bonfire night, to be enjoyed with an evening of watching all the neighbours firework displays (too many little ones to fancy risking actually setting any off in their garden), starting with the lighting of the Chimenia-
Fire well under way
- which, while just spewing out a load of smoke to start with, became a little like a blast furnace once it got going(!)
Bonfire Party
Once everyone had wrapped up warm enough to venture outside a colossal number of sparklers materialised -
Twin Sparklers
- making for some very interesting light painting camera opportunities, then we finished off proceedings with spicy chilli beef, tomato soup, sausages in rolls with onion and a very fine bonfire cake -
Bonfire Cake
- which was even marbled in the middle with red giving the impression of swirling flame!

09 November, 2009

Freezing Fog and Jubilee Line Fire

Freezing Fog in Canary Wharf
Ah well, here we go, the proper proper cold weather starts here...Well actually to be more precise, it started on Friday night when I was attempting to get home...got down to the Jubilee line (having dashed through the torrential downpour between One Canada Square and the tube entrance) only to be met with reduced gate entry and a huge queue...not a good sign...when I got down to platform level things were even worse, 3/4 of the space was taken up with people trying to get back west, so I hopped on a waiting eastbound service (thinking I could cunningly switch back after one stop and skip the wait, maybe even get a seat if I were very lucky)...when the train pulled away the driver came on over the tannoy system - "Just a quick announcement, if any of you happen to have friends or colleagues following on the train behind, they are stopped at Canada Water with reports of a strange smell, so they might be delayed a while"...

At the O2 I flew across to the westbound platform and jumped onto the waiting train which, two minutes of uncomfortable waiting later, my worst fears were confirmed "Sorry folks, the Jubilee line is now suspended in both directions due to a track-side fire at Canada Water"...wonderful...so everyone on both the trains headed upstairs, into the freezing rain, to try and figure out which bus to get...as I was checking signs I missed a bus that said it was going to Waterloo (argh!), but when the next one pulled in, no-one seemed interested in getting on, checking the front it said it was going to Greenwich (which I had a hunch had a DLR stop and a mainline station), so I hopped on, really just to get out of the rain (but there were also enough grumpy commuters waiting to fill two double deckers, so it could have been a bit of a wait)...

About 15 stops later, at Greenwhich high street, lots of people hopped off, so I followed suit, asking as I trudged, getting more and more drenched, which way the station was, and finally found it...but not before I was freezing cold and absolutely soaked...I got up onto the (extremely windy) platform and found that a London Bridge train was due in 10 minutes (delayed), so finally made it to London Bridge about an hour and a half later, and much colder than I should have been...

Today it's freezing fog (which had me walking up and down the platform to stay warm) but at least it isn't pouring with rain...
Freezing Fog in Canary Wharf

05 November, 2009

Nursery finished

Cot Bed Built
Actually, I've got a funny feeling I've said that before - "the nursery is finished" - (perhaps even more than once) and it obviously wasn't quite there on any of those occasions...but I think this really is it this time (Fink glances around nervously for something disastrous to happen to contradict him)...nothing?

Well (he continues cautiously)...over the weekend we finally got around to putting together the proper cot bed, as Thomas is already getting a little bit too big for the rocking crib that is currently sitting in our bedroom (cliché warning - they grow up so fast!)...so once again we are in a situation where Thomas looks completely lost in his bed rather than threatening to spill over the sides... ;) Not that he's going to be sleeping in there at night time quite yet, but Flyingpops is getting him used to sleeping in it by using it for daytime naps (if he can find any room to fit in there around all the plush animals who zoomed in there the very second the new mattress arrived from John Lewis)...so I guess this is the first step towards Thomas actually taking up residency in his own room! How exciting!

04 November, 2009

Building Brockham Bonfire

Building Brockham Bonfire
So, as we happened to be in the area anyway (on our way to a kids Halloween party on Saturday afternoon), we thought we would stop over in Brockham and take a look at the preparations for the bonfire/fireworks for Guy Fawkes night in the village (as they usually, weather permitting, put on rather a good show), noting that the last time we actually saw the bonfire during daylight hours was back in 2005 - and it is looking as impressive as ever, however, I think that's about all we are going to see of it this year, as we have a bonfire party of our own to go to at Flyingpops' folks house (although Brockham is only just about 3 miles away from where we will be making merry, so it might just be we can watch the display from where we are)...! ;)

03 November, 2009

Los Gigantes - landslide death

Los Gigantes
Bit scary...the place where the recent fatal accident took place is the *exact* same place Flyingpops and I enjoyed a little (after breakfast) walk during our last holiday to Tenerife...that tiny, peaceful beach and 300 meters of splintered rock suddenly crashing down upon dozing sunbathers just doesn't bear thinking about...I mean, the beach wasn't exactly packed when we were there (as you can see), but thank goodness more didn't die...

02 November, 2009