The long awaited visit of the Elective Home Education Officer!

I was a little anxious about today, the LEA were sending their Elective Home Education Officer, Mr Moran, to check that we were ok to home educate and so arranged for Merry and her girls to spend the day at our house for moral support!  Really not necessary! 

The morning started with using natural  items such as nettles, berries, walnut shells, red and white onion skins to die rectangles of material using tie dying techniques (thanks to Merry for donating an unwanted blind!).   So, we got started….firstly boiling the material in pans of vinegar and water and salt and water to assist in the dying process.  Little did I know my house would smell of vinegar…this was left to bubble for an hour.  We then had to drain and rinse the material in cool water.  We had 5 pans of water on the go; one with walnut shells, another contained unidentified red berries, two separate pans of red and white onion skins and finally the nettles. OH MY GOODNESS – after 10 minutes of bubbling my house started to smell of fish!!…………. I know!!!………… Would you believe nettles could smell so strongly of FISH! Being vegetarian, was not a smell that I was entirely comfortable with but, thanks to the last of my scented candles, seemed to eliminate any lingering smell (just in time for the arrival of Trevor, the EHE Officer). The girls used marbles and rubber bands to produce a tie-dye effect on the material and then added to each of the pans.   The results of the dyed fabric were fantastic!  The best one being the red onion skins.   It is our intention to make a wall hanging with the 12 fabric tiles.  This is a job for Nana, the girls and a sewing machine!

Oct 22 2009 Dying fabric Celt style 001     Oct 22 2009 Dying fabric Celt style 005    Oct 22 2009 Dying fabric Celt style 006

Oct 22 2009 Dying fabric Celt style 013

                       Oct 22 2009 Dying fabric Celt style 010


Trevor arrived just before 2pm……..what a lovely, lovely man!  I had nothing to fear!  He introduced himself and then checked to see if he could take of  his coat…yes, he was serious!  He explained that he wanted to have a chat about why we chose to HE , our resources etc so he could compile a report.  Whilst chatting, Merry was initially in the ‘background’ stirring the ‘witches brew’ but within minutes was offering to have the babies of this man!! – I did, for the record, (or should I say, for the report) point out that it was not me who had said that!  Both Merry and I were very impressed with him – he was understanding, sympathetic, encouraging and overall a very, very nice man!  He had a chat with all the girls, and was not at all intimidating or scary.  He commented on how impressed he was with Skye and Poppy, that they were lovely girls (which I already know but its nice to hear it from someone else!).  He was amazed at the standard of their handwriting, artwork and content of work from being HE’d for such a short time.  So after an hour and 20 minutes of a very relaxed and comfortable meeting, Trevor left until next year – I do hope it is him again!

I was proud of myself and my girls….Merry said I handled it well and that made me feel better too.  Thank you Merry for your support – I hope to return the favour one day.

Once Merry and the girls had left, we rushed out of the house for Poppy to have her first proper horse riding lesson – she has been SO excited! We arrived and Poppy was allocated her horse, Pickles, who was a lovely dark brown pony.  There are only 3 other children in the class, which is great for Poppy!  Andrea, her instructor,  showed her how to hold the reins, trot, walk over little jumps (logs on the floor).   I don’t think she stopped smiling from the moment she put on her riding hat until she went to bed!


1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Merry
    Oct 25, 2009 @ 21:22:08

    The smell of vinegar – a true home ed day!!! Was lovely – thank you for having us!


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