It’s all over… Tom’s school career has come to an end and I feel as though the tightrope on the high wire has been stretched far into the distance and I’m a little uncertain as to the squashiness of the crash mats below!!
School’s out for summer or in Tom’s case, school’s out full stop!
I really cannot believe where these last five years have disappeared to… except I can clearly see in the confident young man before me just how vital those five years have been.
The selecting of schools for our children is such a difficult process, we angst over the choices, swot up on the result leagues and desperately try and tune in to (or out of in some cases) the ‘gut feeling’ …praying we got it right and that our offspring achieve well and of course are happy and that’s all before the lottery of which school you are actually allocated!
Selecting a Secondary School for Tom, my son with extra needs was even trickier.
My check list was:
1- I want Tom to be happy
2- I want him to develop (but most of all be happy)
3- I wanted an inclusive setting (but most of all be happy)
4- I wanted them to want him… (that way we all stood a fighting chance!)
And with this in mind I set out…
I had “We have had one of those before and it failed, save yourself the struggle, he will end up in a Special school anyway”. “Those” meaning a child with Downs Syndrome by the way.
I had “I don’t know if my headmaster will take Tom”.
I had “I don’t actually know anything about Downs Syndrome.” This was from the specialist SENCO at the school whose job it is to know.
I had “I would be so worried for him, children can be so cruel you know, I would be so scared of bullying.” Again from a SENCO.
And I had “Would you throw him in a swimming pool if he hadn’t any arms?”…
And then I visited the school which became Tom’s school… and was engulfed in positivity.
That positive attitude has enabled Tom to fully participate in a mainstream environment, to learn alongside his peers yet develop at his own slower pace. He has made true friendships which warm my heart and inclusion was certainly seen at its best with a “can do” attitude. After school clubs and school trips abroad were all made available to Tom. The staff have all gone above and beyond to deliver the best five years of education and experience and a confident and happy young man with skills to take forward is the result. This to me is more important than league tables and I cannot thank them enough.
Here is a little video that Tom’s friend captured when Tom was presented with the certificate for the Most Inspiring Student (they wrote Awesome on the Certificate as Tom would then understand what it meant).
Now that was Oscar-worthy to me and I have to admit I cried hearing all of them cheering him.
As we know all good things come to an end but boy oh boy was it a fabulous end…
On his last day of school I felt I was collecting a celebrity! He had enjoyed a party with the team of extra support staff, stocked up on plenty of nibbles and cake (they know Tom so well) and came away with gifts and a huge bag holding all his certificates (Tom has taken AQA’s at school in place of GCSE’s). There were tears amidst the dancing! And as we walked out to leave, the Head told Tom that the door was always open for him and he was proud of him. Tom went in for a handshake and received a hug instead! A lovely moment.
Before term ended the year 11’s hosted their Prom Night that was certainly a memorable occasion.
I have a friend who has some amazing cars… “don’t ask don’t get” is always my motto! So I asked and we got! An amazing and rare Ferrari in red to take Tom to his prom ( Cinderella eat your heart out! And me, as I didn’t even get a ride).
Oh the noise of it, and the excitement as he arrived amidst some fabulous modes of transport, a huge tractor, a child’s plastic tractor (the lad’s legs were up by his ears peddling it up to the entrance I can tell you), a ride-on lawn mower, vintage cars… you name it they were there.
Tom looked so handsome and thank goodness we had his lovely suit he had worn for Grannie’s wedding last year already sorted! One less headache. It was very special to see him among his friends, his best friend Cameron who’s been simply amazing from day one and given Tom the joy of knowing proper friendship. Storm, as you can see is such a beautiful girl (inside and out) who along with Amy and Hannah danced the night away with Tom, (special thanks to Alex, Storm’s boyfriend for allowing Tom to monopolise her time at Prom!) Tom was presented with the sash for Best Transport which was wonderful and all thanks to my generous and huge-hearted friends Carol Anne and Nigel.
A momentous evening for sure.
I do hope you will forgive my indulgence in blogging about Tom. I am so proud of him and I hear from so many of you that you enjoy seeing his progress. I must at this point add in that I completely adore ALL my children and am super proud of Joe and Maddie to, just on this occasion Tom is taking centre stage!
Talking of centre stage… That’s exactly what our Today’s Special Value’s are aren’t they (like what I did there!!!!!)
So that takes me nicely to some rather spectacular TSV’ s coming your way.
The incredible and rather architectural Kelly Hoppen Vase will be your TSV on Thursday 3rd August, I was so happy when I placed it in my bedroom and realised the colour was absolutely perfect by my curtains and lampshade. I think Kelly would approve of my calm and gentle interior here… unlike some in my house which are a tad louder and crazier.
On Saturday 29th Caroline Archer will be gracing your screens with the Liz Earle Invigorate your Senses collection.
With the perfect combination of summer skincare featuring two Super Sizes plus the return of the delightful limited edition Grapefruit and Patchouli Cleanse and Polish. It’s a wonderfully energising twist on the perennial classic that is the multi-award winning Cleanse and Polish. Summer means stickier temperatures and sun care protection so we must ensure we are scrupulous with our cleansing. Exfoliate to take the cleanse to a deeper level and then add the, ever present in my life, Instant Boost Skin Tonic which adds that essential drench of (delicious smelling) hydration before your Skin Repair Moisturiser.
There will be many delights from the shows on Saturday. Orange Flower Botanical Body Wash 214018 is an enduring favourite of mine, this time it’s in a duo. The new aromas in the limited edition haircare collection 233379 had me at hello. Geranium, citrus and vanilla! I cannot wait to try it. I personally love the shampoo and conditioner and find it delivers unrivaled shine and carefully nurtures my slightly (!!!) coloured hair so add in the spectacular new fragrances and it’s a win win.
I wrote recently about my oil love affair… well here’s a new kid on the block!!From Korres best selling skincare range Wild Rose I give you… Wild Rose Vitamin C Brightening Oil
I’m so loving using it ahead of its premiere airing as August Pick of the Month and you can also put it through its paces in your 30 days money back guarantee as there’s no P&P, don’t forget.
It’s all about a high natural content and is boosted with a special, stabilised oil soluble Vitamin C derivative, along with the glorious Wild Rose. It’s lighter than some I’ve used so easily and quickly absorbed. I like to pop it on first but you can mix with your moisturiser too.
The stats say it all for those of you who love your figures…
Of the 32 candidates in the trial
100% said skin appeared softer
88% said skin appeared smoother
100 % said skin appeared more moisturised
97% said skin appeared more revitalised
100% said elasticity seemed optimised
and 84% said skin appeared brighter…
It’s early days but I’m inclined to agree!
If you’ve successfully reached the end of this blog, Bravo! Thank you! And a Gold Star awaits you…
Always love a chat with you and to hear back is the icing on the cake.