Katie's actual birthday was on Friday – again, we didn't do anything much to mark the day after having had the big present-giving occasion the previous weekend, but she did get one present on the day (a Peppa Pig top from our childminder, who had previously given Jamie a Transformer's T-shirt for his), and cards from the childminder and from Jamie, as I hadn't been organised enough to get him to write in his card for her in time for last week's festivities.  Actually, I wasn't really organised enough to get him to do it for this week – I just took advantage of the fact that he had as usual finished dinner before her to haul him into my study (an extension of the dining room) and thrust the card and a pencil in front of him as unobtrusively as possible.  Katie was pleased with the card, anyway – a picture of a dinosaur holding up a large number 4. 

"Look!  He's etten a bit of the 4!" she squealed in delight.  So he had – I hadn't actually noticed, but the designer had drawn a large bite mark in the top of the 4, which was a rather cute touch.  Katie certainly appreciated it.  "It must be made of cheese!"

She chose her birthday cake the next day at Sainsbury's – a giant chocolate hedgehog, though we didn't bother with any candles this time around in the general Saturday evening kerfuffle of getting the children fed and upstairs to bed – and we also gave each child one last present on the Saturday morning, the new Cars 2 DVD for Katie and the Wii Super Mario Galaxy game for Jamie.  And that's that over for another year.  I really must get round to doing something about Christmas.  Present lists, please, family members of mine!

The walk that Barry's workplace had planned for today was, unfortunately, cancelled at the last minute due to general lack of interest, so we went for a stroll in a local scenic village instead, where the kids had a great time climbing on the stone constructions in the village centre.  Jamie decided to have a climbing competition but wasn't very clear on what the rules should be, so the two of them ended up running round the central stone steps a few times instead.  Katie was most proud of herself for managing to climb up on the other stone marker.  "Would you like to see me climb up there?" she wanted to know (I'd been with Jamie on the central stone construction while Barry was with Katie).

"I saw you from over here," I explained.

"Would you like to see me do it closer up?" Katie suggested, clearly not about to take no for an answer.  So I watched her climb up several more times, and we had a lovely time walking through the village and enjoying the end of autumn.  Now we're all back home in the warmth, with Jamie busy playing Super Mario Galaxy and Katie snuggled up with Barry on his armchair playing games on his phone and looking at pictures on his computer.

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