Emily and Phoebe

Friday, December 22, 2006

Happy Christmas!!!

We're off to Moose Manor. Back in a week.

Phoebe's Christmas Extravaganza

We took this at home. Apologies for the poor quality of the others - one of these days I must learn how to work the damn camera...

Tuesday, December 19, 2006


According to her teacher, Phoebe is the unofficial school mascot, and as such has been awarded the role of Host in her class’s Christmas extravaganza. This will involve saying a short Poem of Welcome, which she has memorised:

Ladies, Gentlemen
And Friends, Good Morning!
The Holy Day has arrived
For us all to celebrate together!
Let us gather around
The Holy Manger
And Greet the Birth of Christ
With Devoutness.

She has also, unfortunately, memorised an additional couplet unhelpfully dreamt up by Adonis, which invites all those present to lift up their skirts and show their bottoms. This could lead to suspension, expulsion, and, probably, excommunication.

Sunday, December 17, 2006


I deliver my annual pre-Christmas lecture to the girls, emphasising that if they don't tidy and get rid of anything that is broken or unwanted, Santa won't bring them anything for Christmas.

"So, is that clear girls? We need to clear up this mess and throw out all the old crap."

Phoebe: "So that we have room for lots of new crap!"

Saturday, December 16, 2006

Letter to Father Christmas

I may occasionally give the impression in this blog that Emily has grumpy tendencies (hey, give me a break, what can I do?)

But she is also one of the most thoughtful and loving children imaginable. How about this for a letter from a seven-year-old to Father Christmas:

"Father Christmas, please bring my mummy a really lovely perfume, a big book in English for my daddy (Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure), and 2 or 3 boxes of toy soldiers for my sister and me.

"[heart] Please, Father Christmas, do it for my family [heart]"

(By the way, please let me state in the firmest possible way that gifts this Christmas of toy soldiers will not be welcome. Phoebe and Emily are for some reason mad about them, and they have loads already, but we do not want to encourage a new obsession. Also, Emily has requested very specific toy soldiers from Santa, and if she doesn't get the right ones there will be extensive foot-stamping, face-contorting and snarling for us to deal with.)

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Anyone for tennis?

Yes, thanks to the local council (who are providing free lessons) Emily has gone all Wimbledon on us. At the moment she is full of enthusiasm, returning home from each lesson to declare that even though she is the most useless in her group "it doesn't matter because I love it." Which is a sentiment I think we can all agree with. Especially Duncan Fletcher, Andy Robinson and Steve McClaren.

Anyway, even if she gets bored of tennis and jacks it in, the racket will come in useful for playing air guitar when she enters her inevitable apprentice-rock-chick phase in a few years' time.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Royal Proclamation

I walk into the girls' bedroom. Phoebe is sitting on the top bunk, legs dangling over the edge. "Hello Daddy, I'm the King of Tidying!"

I look down at the floor, where the entire contents of the toy cupboard appear to have been deposited.

"Does that mean that when I come back you'll have tidied everything in here, darling?"

"No, Daddy. I'm the King of Tidying. That means that when I tell you and Emily to tidy you have to do it. Because I'm king!"

The expression on her face can only be described as a smirk.

Friday, December 08, 2006

"My dream,"

said Emily, confidingly, "is to have forty pencils. I only have thirty-eight at the moment."

Ah, the mad, mad ambition of the girl. She's heading for heartbreak, I tell you...

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Emily the Good Samaritan

At school the other day, during break, Emily and her friend came across a little girl from the reception class who had fallen over and scraped her knee. Having calmed her down, they took her to the staff room so that the teacher in charge of first aid could clean her up.

Full of the warm glow of satisfaction that comes from Doing Good, Emily has now vowed that every day she will find someone to help. Now I don’t want to discourage this impulse to help others, but there are a couple of things that worry me. First is the “every day” part of her promise. Knowing Emily, she will be unable to sleep at night if twenty-four hours elapse without her having Made A Difference To Someone’s Life. Second, I wonder what she means by “find someone”. I have visions of Emily and her gang of do-gooders roaming the playground and forcing the tinies to submit to their ministrations…

Emily: Oi, you, come here. Let me help you.

Tiny: But I don’t need any help.

Emily Yes you do, you fell over. You hurt your head!

Tiny: No I didn’t. And my head’s fine.

Emily: Don’t argue. I’m going to help you. Boys, hold her down. [Emily proceeds to wind a bandage around her struggling victim’s head.]

You can see where this urge to help others could lead, I think. Anyway, I tried to persuade her that if she’s looking for people to help she could start with me and Nevi, and tidy her room. You can imagine what sort of eye-rolling reaction that comment provoked...