Thursday, April 23, 2009

Things They Should Tell You When You Move To England, But They Don't

When you have a child in school here, read the school bulletins the day you get them! Otherwise, you might miss something that is happening the next day at school.  Today is St. George's Day in England.   You may have heard of him. 

 
George of George and the Dragon fame.

I missed the memo on when St. George's Day was.  So today when I took LaLa to school, I noticed something was up.  None of the kids were in uniform.  The girls were dressed as Princesses and the boys as superheros (because apparently not many boys have knight outfits).  Awesome.  LaLa immediately starts crying about wanting to be a princess.  Awesome.  So I ended up dropping LaLa off at her classroom and driving back to my house to look for a princesses costume that didn't have a stain down the front.  Then I had to drive back up to the school and drop it off at the office, with the 50p. non-uniform day tax fee.  Crisis averted.  

Another thing that is not in the moving to England required reading is the fact that there is really really really long days here in the spring and summer.  The sun comes up somewhere around 6am (I don't know the exact time because frankly I am not conscious at the time) and it doesn't go down until sometime after 8pm.  My kids have a bedtime of 8pm.  It is pretty strictly enforced during the school week.  Do you know how hard it is to get a kid to bed when they are convinced that it is still day time?  I tell LaLa to get into bed and I get the protest of "Mom it isn't dark outside!  It is still morning time!"  To which I just sigh and say "Get in the bed," because at this point of the day I am just exhausted and I don't have much fight left in me.  I then spend the next hour shouting "Go to bed or your not going to school tomorrow!" from KiKi's bedroom to LaLa because well KiKi sees it is light outside too and well if it isn't dark outside then it means it is play time.  By the time I get both of the girls to sleep I am done.

They really need to start adding sections in the "Moving to England for Americans Manual" on time changes, lesser known holidays, and school communication methods.

28 comments:

Anonymous said...

Oh dear..you aint seen anything yet...it gets a lot lighter for a lot longer in a few weeks time. We put blackout blinds at the windows in the childrens rooms..most blind shops and even some supermarkets sell these. Could be worse, in Shetland it hardly gets dark and they play golf at midnight in mid summer!!! To balance that its pitch dark most of the time in the winter. In Scotland we have St Andrews day in November..aka Tartan are us:)Ever tried to find tartan for three kids?
Effin Grannie

Amy@Bitchin'WivesClub said...

Thanks for the heads' up! My kids will go bananas with St. George's Day. Little warriors, all three of 'em. :)

I think Wisconsin must be pretty close to England's latitude because I am dealing with that same sun issue right now. :( Blackout shades are def. a must.

notfromaroundhere said...

Wait till summer, still light at nearly 11. What fun that shall be!!!

mo.stoneskin said...

I think our longest day is something like sunrise 4:45 sunset 9:40. Make sure you have beers in for that evening!

gaffergirls.com said...

hi Kat...
love your blog...
out visiting this morn.. glad we popped in for visit/
mona & the girls

Single Parent Dad said...

As commented about, black out blinds are your friend. Dunelm, Argose, B & Q most of the major retailers do them.

Laura said...

How crazy it must be getting used to a totally different culture. Sounds like a lot of fun though! Good think you had extra princess costumes laying around... Good job!

Comedy Goddess said...

Sounds like you got it together just in time or else your little princess would have let the dragon slay you.

We have blackout shades. And I have earplugs.

♥ Braja said...

Damn, it took me so long to comment on the Jehovahs Witness post that you put another one up in the meantime!

And Amy beat me here??? Jeez...

Anyway, you get them into Baptists and I'll love you more than ever.
Wait...I already do...

xx

Badass Geek said...

The long hours of daylight would be hard to adapt to, but in the darker months, I'm sure you'll miss them.

Sprite's Keeper said...

Princess Day? If Sprite hears about that, we may have to move to England ourselves.

Myshka said...

Black. Out. Blinds. The light in our room at night is sometimes so bad that I could probably read a book. Other things they don't tell you about: Their pink and white arshmallows are icky. They're NOT Campfire ones, that's for sure. And jellied eels. Who in their right mind would eat jellied eels?!?!! Oh I could go on and on...

splodge said...

Not sure what that says about the British, when it takes an American to remind us of our day to celebrate our English-ness-ness.

...."The girls were dressed as Princesses and the boys as superheros (because apparently not many boys have knight outfits)"Love it! My son only had a dalmation outfit and a tiger suit...wore them on all the school dress-up days. Ah! Happy days.

The longest day in UK is 21st June - doesn't get dark until 11 p.m.

Bee and Rose said...

We celebrated St. George's Day in our little homeschool. We made dragon shaped cookies and Cat got all dressed up in her princess finery. She then decided to grab her sword and slay some dragons...aka Tween Caveboy...he was not amused!

I think you should write manual for all of us Yankees that may want to move there someday!

Yaya said...

You should totally write that! It would be great!!!!!

Captain Dumbass said...

Um, did you live underground in Missouri?

Lola said...

Light until 11? I'd be in my glory! My boy can sleep even if it's light out, so we should make the move.

Chris M. said...

Hey...the sun rises at 6 and sets at 8ish here in NC, too.

That doesn't make it any easier, mind you, that it's in the States.

-Chris
Weather Moose

Mom in High Heels said...

Well, you are in for a SHOCK when it's full summer. Here in Germany it's daylight FOREVER during the summer. They shoot off fireworks on post for the 4th of July and can't start until around 11pm, and it's still a bit light! AND the sun is up around 5am. Insanity, I tell you! Insanity.

Bobby G said...

ST george day, Gayest day ever? lol

Lisa Brandos said...

it doesn't get dark until after 8 here in Des Moines. Not fun, but from what I understand, since you're further North it's worse and the winters are awfully dark? Good luck with that. I agree with the black out blinds. Or Bendadryl? Whatever works, ya know!?

Elizabeth Bradley said...

I lived way up north in Canada in high school and it didn't get dark in summer till after 11.

I can imagine how different England is, because I was shocked to find out how different things were in Canada, some subtle and some not so!

Your a good "mum" for bringing La La her Princess outfit.

Heather said...

Even I feel weird going to bed when it's still light outside. My daughter has a 9 pm bedtime (yes she's 15 and I do still enforce it). But this time of year, it's not dark yet here, and I end up letting her stay up at least til it's dark. There's less then two months of school left by this point anyway.

lizspin said...

They should give you some sort of manual when you move into the country.

I think my daughter may be moving there next month after her college graduation. . . Do me a favor. . .will you tell her she's NOT a princess?

Mama Dawg said...

Just be thankful you don't live in Alaska.

Petra a.k.a The Wise (*Young*) Mommy said...

How annoying! Although I must admit that my son's school here in the US is REALLY bad about announcing things going on and we miss them all the time. What a pain!

Cape Cod Gal said...

Honey, you need to write that book! Moms will thank you!

LearnedFool said...

It's refreshing to hear of schools celebrating St. George's Day in the UK given the current fad of focusing on the other cultures of our multi-cultural society :)