Thursday 26 October 2017

Half term holiday success

Today was a good day, a successful day. It was the kind of day which prompted me to say in my Instagram stories that I felt 'almost normal'.

I'm not a fan of that word to be honest, and there will be a further post about language in general, but the 'normal' word just kind of slipped out. 

Sasha and I were sitting at a table in that famous Scottish restaurant when that thought popped into my head. I actually got to drink a whole cup of tea while she chomped her way through the usual million fries. We felt like one of the crowd (it was quite busy in there), even though, or maybe because of the fact that, it's not something we get to do very often at all.
Day out with Sasha
Our exciting and successful day out in pictures

The chips are fairly frequent, I'll be honest, but it's always drive through and bring them back home to eat, never sit in the restaurant. Unless we're on holiday and it's too far to take them back to our holiday home. But we try not to book any accommodation like that. 

Anyhow, I digress. The day started off well; Tamsin had planned to go and see Despicable Me 3 at the cinema with a friend. Sasha wasn't keen on the idea of seeing that film, but when I realised the new My Little Pony film was out this half term I thought I could tempt her with that instead. She agreed, slightly hesitantly - sitting still and concentrating on a film is something she rarely does. In fact in her 10 years, she's only managed to sit through three films at the cinema - Home, Inside Out and Trolls. The latter we saw three times in a 2 week period because she loved it so much!

I booked the tickets the day before so there was no backing out (except there would have been, there always is - plans X, Y and Z are always a possibility where PDA is concerned). Older girls film started at 1030 so I could see them in safely, then our pony extravaganza would start at 1115. Perfect. Except it suddenly dawned on me that that would mean 45 minutes of hanging around for Sasha. Sasha doesn't do hanging around....

I grabbed the iPad to take with us and her current favourite other item, the ultimate guide to Pokemon. Considering she's been bending my ear about them for half an hour every bedtime for the past few days, I reckoned she'd be happy to educate me some more, even if that was back in the car. But then I suddenly remembered that I needed to get some cash out, from the cash machine in the shopping centre attached to the cinema complex. Sasha had woken up in a pretty good mood and was looking forward to the film so I decided it was worth the risk of dragging her in there to pass the time. 

Luckily, the first shop we came to was CEX, which sells pre-loved computer/console games. A quick look in there to check if they had anything she wanted (they didn't, but thankfully no upset about that) and then I was amazed as I managed to lead Sasha into three different shops selling items she had no interest in (i.e. clothes). Not only that, but despite grumpily trying to make me head back to the cinema as quickly as possible, she did allow me just enough time to speed-try on three tops in GAP, and begrudgingly admitted they looked OK and I was allowed to buy them. There had been no time for browsing of course, just the first three items I could lay my hands on, but I can't tell you how amazing the fact that I was able to shop with Sasha is!

This is turning into an epic story already... and yet it was just one day of our half-term holidays. That reminds me, Sasha hadn't even realised it was half-term until she realised Tamsin was at home during the day again on Tuesday, and she asked me why. Oops, silly me, I'd forgotten to tell her about half-term. All the days are rolling into one since she has been unable to attend school any more...

We arrived back at the cinema in plenty of time to go and find our seats, and then Sasha decided she wanted to try some popcorn. And some candy floss (or cotton candy as she calls it - American YouTube influence coming through loud and clear there!). It's such a rare occurrence for Sasha to be willing to try any new foods that I find it very difficult to say no when she asks, and so it was that ten minutes later I found myself nibbling on snacks that I don't actually like very much. And a couple of hours later I was polishing off the hamburger in McDonalds. Sasha had tried them, and not liked them. But at least she tried them. That's an achievement right there.  

The My Little Pony film ended up being a little too long, and a little too dark for too long, so we had to take some time out by going to the toilets very slowly. I wasn't at all sure that Sasha would return to watch the end of the film, but she did and was very pleased to see the happy conclusion followed by all the songs and the credits. The music is generally the best bit of any film in her eyes,and she loves to go down to the front, by the screen, to dance when the credits roll and the room has emptied a bit.

After all that came the McDonalds trip which I described at the beginning. Sasha looked at her book briefly and only hurried me up a couple of times, another achievement. We left to go and collect the older girls from where they had chosen to eat after their film, Pizza Express. As I stood at their table helping them pack away their belongings, I had my back to Sasha who was next to a table by the front door. I turned around to see that she had helpfully started to sort the colouring pens in their mixed colour pen pots into block colours , which made me chuckle. Time for a quick exit at that point, and home to relax for a while before Sasha decided to practice applying her Halloween make-up.

A fun-filled day, and such a contrast to yesterday when Sasha had been anxious and got over upset about not going out. That was mentioned briefly today, as today was a grey and rainy day, and in the car on the way to the cinema Sasha sighed and said that she felt even more guilty about not enjoying the nice weather while we had it. We didn't dwell on it, but it did reinforce for me what a difficult time she had had making that decision yesterday. Hopefully today made up for it. Tomorrow is another new day. 


I would be so happy if you enjoy reading my blog and would consider nominating me in the BAPS blogging awards - nominations for me or any other amazing SEND blogger can be made on this page: 

Full details on what BAPS are in my recent post 'What on earth are the BAPS?'

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