Sunday, December 31, 2006

Dappy New Year!

Thomas decided that we just had time for one more visit to the hospital this year (as if they haven't taken enough money off us in car park charges already!), so stuck a Hama Bead up his right nostril at 7 o'clock on New Year's Eve!

He thought the whole thing was a great adventure: going out in the car in the dark, going into casualty and playing with the toys, all of the attention that he got. But, to be fair to him, he was very brave the whole time he was in with the doctor having the bead removed!

The doctors also shone a torch in his ears to check that there were no beads in there, and the light shone in one ear, and straight out the other!

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

No Christmas puddings in our house!

In a desperate attempt to burn off all of the turkey that we've eaten, Hannah was determined to go out jogging with Daddy. So, on go the 'matching' tracksuits, trainers and caps...

We went for a quick lap around the block, with regular walking stops to make sure that we didn't overdo things! The biggest problem was that there wasn't room in the oxygen tent for both of us when we got home!

Here's a photo of us warming up - although that wore us out before we even started!

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Miss Santa

It's such a nice photo of Cousin Bethan looking Christmassy, that it had to go on the blog!

Why are pirates called pirates?

They just arrrrr!


Monday, December 25, 2006

Happy Christmas!

Happy Christmas to everyone who stumbles onto our blog! We've had a really fun day, with a delicious dinner at Uncle Mike and Auntie Jan's house, where we saw Bethan & James and Nanny & Grumpy, and a delicious tea at our house. where we saw Grandma & Grandad. As well as great food, we've also had loads of ace presents!

A big favourite is the book that thinks it's a playmat that thinks it's a fire engine. We've been on lots of fire rescues already this Christmas, although Mummy and Daddy have trouble fitting their bottoms into the fire engine!

A castle has also proven popular, with lots of exciting tales being made up - most of which involve a dragon kidnapping the Princess.

Father Christmas also brought a doll's house, which was ably put together by everyone...

And here we have a photo of two pirates taking a break from murder on the high seas in order to furnish the dolls house!

Thanks from all of us at the Hurley House for all of the cards and presents that we've been given - it was very, very kind of you!

P.S. Oh, and Mummy and Daddy had a shiny new camera (which took some of the photos above) - maybe it will encourage us to update the blog more often!

Sunday, December 24, 2006

The star and the wiseman

Here are the costumes that Hannah and Thomas' wore when singing their "Junior Church Songs" on the stage in church today.

Thomas wasn't really supposed to be up there, as he's in Crèche not Junior Church, but you can't stop him from going anywhere with Hannah! And it turned out that he was the most enthusiastic singer on the stage, even though he hardly knew the words! He was certainly the bounciest person there, too!

It wasn't so much being a Wise Man, more like a "Clown in a Crown"!

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

A star is born...

Hannah had her school Christmas play today, in which she was a narrator. Her weeks of practice paid off as she said her line perfectly - not too fast, not too slow, and loud enough for everyone to hear:

Once upon a time, there was a beautiful girl called Cinderella.

She also joined in with some fantastic singing and dancing, and looked like she was having a great time. There were lots of 'secret' waves to Mum and Dad, too!

Hannah will be available to sign autographs after school!

Monday, December 11, 2006

Photo gallery update

We've just finished setting up a new '2006 Collection' of photos on the Hurley Home Gallery. They show some of the fun things that we've been up to in the last year, and many of the great people that we've been meeting up with.

Have fun as you look around, and feel free to add (nice!) comments to the photos!

Saturday, December 09, 2006

Have you washed your hands?

It's become almost traditional for us to put a photo on the blog of Hannah and Thomas helping to make the Christmas cake...

We've left things a bit late this year, so it'll be a bit of a race to do the marzipan and icing, but it still tasted great to lick out the bowl!

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Like sister, like brother...

Thomas has learnt lots of tricks from his sister (and made up some of his own new ones as well!).

His number one (in more ways than one!) trick at the moment, is an exact copy of what his big sister used to do. Knowing that he gets a sweet every time he goes to toilet on the potty, he's suddenly achieved fantastic bladder control:

  • Sit, drip - sweet!
  • Sit, drip - sweet!
  • Sit, drip - sweet!
  • ...

It would be cheaper to keep him nappies!

Friday, November 24, 2006

Oops, I did it again!

It was cereal last time, but this time it was the patter-patter of Hama-beads falling onto the floor!

Maybe it's just some kind of modern art collage..


Sunday, November 05, 2006

Gallery Corner

Hannah has been practising her computer skills by drawing pictures with Paint.

I won't tell her that they're better than her Dad could do - it would only go to her head!

Sandy Beach

Friday, November 03, 2006

Bubble Monster

It looks like Thomas is enjoying his bath - but maybe he should spend less time playing in the water, and more time washing his face!


Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Hannah Sandwich!

Thomas' worst nightmare: surrounded by Hannahs, with no way of escape!

Actually, he doesn't seem to care too much!


Saturday, October 28, 2006

The Human Car Park

Thomas doesn't like anyone trying to catch a Saturday afternoon nap when he's around, so Daddy (who was just minding his own business) suddenly found that he had become a human car park for, first, one car, then another, and another, and another...

One toy box full of cars later...

Monday, October 09, 2006

Quote of the day

Hannah, while trying to dip her whole arms in the sink, said "I'm washing my eyeballs". We think that she meant elbows!

Saturday, September 16, 2006

Margam Park

We made the most of a gorgeous autumn day by heading to Margam Park today.

The place had mostly closed down for the autumn (we were gutted that we didn't get to meet Noddy - he was there last week!) but it was very relaxing to walk around the deer park. We even saw some deer, which doesn't usually happen when we visit - Thomas and Hannah must have been being quiet!

I promise you, it is a deer, not just a smudge on the camera lens! Here's some more photos of our day out, anyway.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Going potty!

Not to be outdone in the 'growing up' stakes by Hannah starting school, Thomas did his first ever wee on the potty today! He did look very pleased with himself!

We can't wait to be able to walk around the house in our socks, without feeling the damp patches on the carpet!

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

First day at school

It was Hannah's first day at school today, and it was very exciting for everyone! Hannah certainly looks all grown up in her new school uniform, but she needs to pull her socks up!

Hannah had been looking forward to starting 'big school' all summer holidays, but then on Saturday night we had floods of tears. When we asked Hannah what was wrong, she explained that she was sad because she wanted to be able to do 'backward rolls' before she went to school, and she still couldn't do them!

Cue a lot of 'backward roll' practice on the bed for the rest of Saturday evening! Hannah managed to do them on her own in the end, so she finally felt that she was ready for the big step into school! We didn't tell her that Mummy and Daddy can't do backward rolls!

All of the worry was forgotten on the big day, though, as Hannah couldn't wait to go in through the big doors into the wonderful world of school life!

Monday, August 28, 2006

Get together

One of the nice things about Grandma's birthday was that Uncle Tim, Auntie Abby, Chloe and Anya came to visit Cardiff, which meant that Hannah and Thomas could have a great time playing with their cousins.

It was very nice to see them, even if it was a bit on the noisy side occasionally!

Happy 60th Birthday, Grandma

As if one 60th birthday in the family during August wasn't enough, it was Grandma's turn to hit the big 6-0 today! It's going to cost Cardiff Bus a fortune in free travel!

Grandma decided to test the foundations of her bungalow by inviting around 70 people to her party! It was bit of a squeeze, but everyone had a great time.

Here's a photo of Grandma and Grandad on the big day - they have to stand that close together, as they're both so old now that they topple over if they're not leaning against something!

Grandma had to have two cakes for her party - a chocolate cake in the afternoon, which could be enjoyed by the grandchildren, and then a fruit cake in the evening so that Grandma had a chance to blow out some candles after the children had gone to bed!

Sunday, August 27, 2006

Saturday, August 26, 2006

Fat bottom girls!

Here's a photo of what Hannah might look like in 20 years time, if she keeps eating all those chocolates

And here's Hannah's twin sister, Thomasella!

But, we like Grumpy's new girlfriend best!

Weston Super-Mare

Grumpy got to choose where we went for a Bank Holiday Saturday, seeing as it was his 60th birthday last week. He nearly chose a day's free bus travel on Cardiff Bus, but then decided to go further afield and head over to Weston Super-Mare. So, we all got into Uncle Mike's minibus, and set sail across the Severn Bridge.

It was a bit wet and windy when we first got there (so we had to have our sandwiches under a shelter!), but the sun soon came out, and we all had a great time.

We spent a lot of time on the pier, with Hannah and Thomas trying to prove to Uncle Mike that their bus could go faster than his bus!

Thomas and James spent ages at the top of this 'death slide', as we tried to egg them on to going down the slide on their own! Thomas kept sitting up on the top and letting his feet dangle down, but wouldn't go... until James gave him a little push! There were tears, but we all thought Thomas was very brave! He didn't go back up there, though!

After all the fun at the end of the pier, some of us were too exhausted to walk back to the pier front, so we hitched a lift!

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Happy 60th Birthday, Grumpy

He might actually look 70, but it was Grumpy's 60th birthday today!

Even though the Post Office would love him to retire, so that they don't have to pay him such huge wages(!), Grumpy enjoys being a Postie too much to stop now! It'll be a lot more difficult posting letters after the party that we had in the Harvester, though - maybe he'll need to use his new radio controlled Postman Pat van to carry the heavy bags!

Lot's of the family came along to celebrate and help blow out the candles. As usual, Hannah had a lot of wind!

Thursday, August 17, 2006

Matthew Hurley - 17th August 2006

It's been a really sad day today, as we had to go through the premature birth of our baby son, who we've called Matthew Hurley. At only 20 weeks, he was too small to cope with life outside the womb, and passed away very shortly afterwards.

Ruth had been feeling uncomfortable all week, and went to bed early last night feeling pretty rough. When we woke up in the morning, Ruth was in a lot of pain and discomfort, and was suffering from some bleeding. We telephoned the hospital and they told her to come in straight away.

We dropped Hannah and Thomas off at Nanny and Grumpy's on the way, and sped along to the maternity unit. By this time, Ruth was sure that it was contractions that she was feeling, and they were already every few minutes.

Not long after our arrival at the hospital, the midwife confirmed that Ruth was giving birth, and that we would lose the baby.

The birth progressed very similarly to the births of Hannah and Thomas - in fact, I think we were in the same room where we gave birth to Thomas! The labour lasted about an hour during the time we were in the hospital, and Matthew was born at 9:10am, weighing a teeny 10 oz.

Matthew did make some small movements during his short life, but never opened his eyes. We could see his heart beating against his tiny frame for about an hour, but that may have just been nervous twitching, rather than signs of life. We think that he looked a lot like his Dad - he definitely had the 'Hurley' look about him!

The midwife was fantastic the whole time, and looked after Ruth and the baby (and the Dad!) very well. They took some hand- and foot-prints of the baby for keepsakes, and also arranged for a couple of photographs to be taken. Although we think the photos are gorgeous, it seems quite macabre to put them on the blog, so we'll just show you the prints that were taken. The scan makes the prints look a lot bigger than they really are - his feet were 3cm long, and his hands just 2cm.

Breaking the sad news to family and friends has been difficult. Hannah burst into tears when we told her, and said that she "really wanted a baby". Thomas isn't really sure what's going on, but can tell something sad has happened.

Matthew stayed with us the whole time we were in the hospital, so we were with him for about six hours in the end. It was amazing to see how perfect he already was - even though he was only 20 weeks old. He had fingernails and toenails, his ears were gorgeous, his feet seemed huge - he'd have been trouble to buy shoes for!

We were only able to spend a short time getting to know him, but he's going to be sorely missed.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Plum time!

It's that time of year again, when we can save a fortune on our shopping bills by harvesting the plums from the trees in our back garden!

There aren't as many this year, as we did some major pruning at the start of the year, but they are definitely delicious. We probably won't be making jam or chutney with them, as they probably won't last long enough!

Here's a photo of Hannah and Thomas on their way up the ladder to do the picking - we're probably breaking a hundred child labour and health and safety laws!

And, here's the proof that the plums taste delicious!

Saturday, August 12, 2006

Last day of the holidays

It was the last day of our two-week holidays, so we wanted to make the most of the day, but without going too far. So, we headed across the city to Penarth, for a walk along the pier, and a play at the park.

As usual, we quickly found a bench where we could sit and munch on our sandwiches!

Followed by some after-lunch races along the pier - Hannah was easily the winner of this race, as she was the only runner!

Walking along the coast was too much for some people, so Thomas elected for a shoulder ride. What you can't see from this picture is that Mummy is giving Daddy a shoulder ride, just out of shot below! (Only kidding!)

Thursday, August 10, 2006

All aboard!

We've been carrying on the day-trip extravaganza that's been our summer holiday this year, with trips to parks, beaches and woods this week. Today we headed to the Forest of Dean to visit the Perrygrove Railway. We'd had lots of good recommendations for this place, and it lived up to it's promise. Hannah and Thomas loved riding on the train, and the treasure hunt that we went on was great fun!

It was lunch time when we first got there, so it didn't take long before we were digging into our sandwiches!

Hannah wanted to be the 'leader' while we were following the treasure hunt clues. She did a great job in finding all of the places where the clues were hidden. Here's a picture of her and Thomas heading through the woods, sniffing out the next clue.

Hannah and Thomas thought the train rides were cool, and both were making excited squeals as we went along - very embarrassing! Hannah even got to wave the green flag to start the train ride! Thomas preferred his Thomas the Tank Engine flag, though.

Friday, August 04, 2006


To end our last day of freedom in the Gower, before returning back to Cardiff to pick up the children, we decided to head off the beaten track and make our way to Pwll Du (Welsh for Blackpool). There was no fun fair or tower, but it was a beautiful beach to reach, even if it took us about four false starts walking through the National Trust paths before giving up and driving as close as we could get to the cove before walking!