Monday, 21 February 2011


See the doll second from the right? That's Nonny!

For my daughter's first birthday she was given that doll, and she carried it everywhere with her for the next four years. We went on holiday, so did Nonny. She went to the loo, so did Nonny. She went to pre-school, so did Nonny. There's pictures of her at weddings, at her grandparents, always with Nonny hanging off her hand.

Luckily, we quickly realised her attachment to Nonny and were able to snap up a second Nonny, known to us as Evil Twin Derek so that our daughter wouldn't realise what we meant when we referred to it each time it was time to switch them over so Nonny/Derek could have a wash. (Why Evil Twin Derek? A short-lived obsession with the Sunday omnibus of Sunset Beach in the late nineties)

Oh, and why Nonny? We think she was trying to say Dolly.

Once she started school she started to leave Nonny at home, but she was always next to her in bed at night, till she was eight or nine, then she became one of many stuffed toys at the end of the bed, still beloved but not constantly needed.

We even felt last year that she could know about Evil Twin Derek and not be too traumatised, and indeed, she didn't really care (she's 12 now!)

Anyway, all of this has nothing to do with anything other than I stumbled across these five dolls on Ebay, truly stumbled because it's not like I can search for the word Nonny.

Sadly, these 5 dolls have only ever sat on a shelf, according to the information. Those dolls haven't lived like Nonny has. Maybe the new purchaser will love this Nonny like our girl loved hers.

Saturday, 19 February 2011

Thinking Day 2011: Bolivia

The girls chose Bolivia as the country for Thinking Day, not the easiest of countries to learn more about, for example if we are learning about a country I usually line up some food but boiled lamb brains and dried llama shanks are not that easy to find in Tesco.

But I was able to find a craft - God's Eyes - that we had never done before and that isn't just Mexican, but also Bolivian, so that was fun to do, and had very varying results! Here's a link to a sheet to make them, from the fabulous Ideas4kids site.

We also learned a little about life in Bolivia for girls and women, and had a look at participation in Guiding in Bolivia.

Division day out soon, and a break for half term!

Tuesday, 8 February 2011

Thinking Day 2011: lemons and limes

Have been using my spare time to prepare for our two weeks on World Thinking Day at Brownies.

Don't know what Thinking Day is? Here's the explanation.

And here's some of what we have done over the years:
We will be attending a division thinking day event, and in our meetings we will be doing the WAGGGS 2011 challenge pack, so I have been:
  • writing Brownie names on lemons and limes
  • writing Brownie names on large envelopes
  • cutting up paper so each envelope has 23 pieces of paper
  • putting together a plan for the first week that involves those things and more
For the second week, I am throwing it out to the girls to make the decision, the second week will be based around whichever of the 5 WAGGGS named countries being supported by the Thinking Day fund this year:
  • Nepal
  • Cyprus
  • Bolivia
  • Yemen
  • Democratic Republic of Congo
Not easy choices for me but I know I'll come up with something, whatever country they choose! There's a sheet on each in the WAGGGS pack and I'll use those as the starting point. I am hoping they don't choose Cyprus, probably the only country any of them would have been to, I think the more unfamiliar to them, the better.

Sunday, 6 February 2011

Brownie Chinese New Year

The Brownies celebrated Chinese New Year this week, with food - those girls do love their food! - Chinese lanterns and lovely scratch art animals from the Chinese calendar.

Lots of excitement too as we appointed two new sixers and three new seconds, very happy with the sixer appointments, the seconds seem quite young but I wanted to give each a chance for different reasons.

One is very quiet but has grown so much in her time with us so I am hoping being a second will give her more confidence.

One is new to our unit but was a Brownie in another unit, I am hoping being a second will make her feel included, accepted - she is very giggly and I think that may be nerves about her new situation.

And the third is very forward, always asking questions before we get to the end of the sentence, butting in when we are explaining, even when I appointed her, she yelled "Yes!" So I am hoping being a second brings a little maturity for her, the need to work together to support her six should be good for her I think.

I think they will all make good seconds, if I have judged them correctly!

PS: the badge above wasn't actually given out, we ordered them when we did Chinese New Year two years ago and they are lovely but right now we can't afford little extra badges like these, our funds are being directed towards our adventure weekend in the summer as much as possible. Not to the detriment of our weekly meetings, just directing the "nice extras" budget towards the weekend instead.
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