What Happened in September? The exciting goings-on of the Cantan Family, as they juggle work, life and two children with disabilities.

September is relatively a quiet month with most activities revolving around going back to school, getting back into routine and after school activities.

That being said, if you checked out my July and August posts you know that we jam a lot into 30 days. If you’d like to check out the last two months they are July and August. So this is What Happened in September.

Back to School

Back to School
Back to School Year 8 & Year 4

Back to school is never an easy transition. New classes, new teachers, remembering to go to a different classroom and that’s just the parents! This year saw Alana embark on year eight and Thomas embark on year four which also makes him a badger. I do appreciate the woodland animals, he’s been a rabbit, owl, fox and now a badger. Although, I still forget I write foxes! Thomas settled straight back in, despite a new class and a new teacher, he took it in his stride and seems extremely happy. Thomas develops little and often but he’s come along way in the last few years and he thrives on familiarity and consistency.

Alana, however, is still struggling with routine and new teachers, new classes and new expectations. There seems to be a big jump from year six to year seven and an even bigger jump from year seven to year eight but we’ve started the new year with attempting our homework earlier than the day before! She has her first detention of the year tomorrow! (facepalm) she tells me that her bag fell upside down and open so she spent the time collecting her things, which made her late! I’m ever hopeful that one day she will just pick up a book and read (I did say I was hopeful) but then Alana has her own disabilities. We’ve struggled since she was six to get her the support she needs, it’s still only just beginning. I’m honestly not exactly confident that any school can do enough given budget cuts. I could vent about the lack of support for underachieving students but that is for another post!

Extra-Curricular Activities

Classic ballet shoes
Ballet Shoes

So with the autumn term comes dance classes in tap and modern, singing lessons, youth theatre and swimming lessons. I often don’t know whether I’m coming or going and that’s without school activities.

I often wonder if there is such a thing as ‘too’ many extra-curricular activities. Are we bringing up a generation of prima ballerinas? Alana has the following:

  1. Monday – Tap
  2. Tuesday – Singing followed by Youth theatre
  3. Wednesday – Tap & modern
  4. Thursday – Rehearsals or young carers
  5. Friday – Swimming
  6. Saturday – Dance workshop (all day)

That is without piano and flute lessons, drama club and school productions! Perhaps, I am resenting the fact that growing up one activity was a stretch for my Mum.

Talking of activities at the beginning of September, Alana took her first exam in Musical Theatre Singing, Grade 3. She performed three songs, Cinderella, Annie and Moana. She was extremely nervous but the results were back last week and she got 92!!! Soooo….proud mummy moment!

Thomas’ 9th Birthday

Blowing out his candles with enthusiasm
Blowing out his birthday candles

September is also the month of Thomas’ Birthday, it’s hard to believe that we have a 9-year-old running around. We never make much of a fuss when it comes to Thomas which is ironic considering his start in life.

However, this year for the first time, Thomas knew that it was ‘his’ birthday! Doesn’t sound like much of a milestone but when you have a child with learning difficulties, just him knowing that they were his balloons, his presents and it was his day made it seem all the more special this year!

Paulton’s Park/Peppa Pig World

Peppa Pig World - Daddy Pigs Little Car Ride
Daddy Pigs Little Car Ride

Due to the back to school September rush, we like to keep it simple for Thomas, family BBQ’s, pizza at home, nothing too exciting. He’d never like a birthday party so we try and do days out. We’ve done zoos, trampoline park, bowling and this year we decided to go back to Peppa Pig World AKA Paulton’s Park. He’s honestly not a huge theme park fan and we’ve realised that anything with a drop or at height is too much for him which is pretty much every ride but he always gives it a good go. We dragged with us my unaware parents (Dad and Step-Mum) who I have to give credit to the photos. I might have to start taking her on all our family events for the photographs!

I love Paulton’s Park, it’s only within an hours drive for us so it’s convenient for us to just hop in the car and have a few hours in the park. I don’t want to write too much in this post as I have written a full review of our day out at Paultons Park/Peppa Pig World please check it out.

Alana has a suspected broken hand

Kids break things, it’s inevitable growing up that most of us will spend some time or an evening sat in A&E. I was lucky, no broken bones but at the age of 10 I got a lovely trip in an ambulance after knocking myself out in Weymouth on a slide! That was my story to tell the kids!

Thomas unfortunately, has had his head glued more times than I would like so these days he has a special helmet for outside play to help with impacts, it just means he kids his lips, teeth and nose instead-but progress!

Broken Hand
Broken Hand

Alana is the one who through most of her life, has remained intact apart from having her head glued around her second birthday as she fell backwards onto the bottom of our stairs so it’s been quite a shock that with age and puberty has come accidents she is probably the only one I know who can fall over on a slippery floor in tap class and break her hand (suspected). It’s still suspected at this point but it’s pretty much three years to the day that she fractured her little toe while trampolining! She has a temporary plaster cast for two weeks and it will be removed and re xrayed on the 8th October. They will then decide as to what happens next. Thank goodness for minor injury units, they have come to our rescue with both our children!

There has been talk recently of closing our local unit down, but with waiting times as long as five hours in main A&E’s that can only increase with the closure of minor injury units.

Alana survived the x-ray and the casting to return to school (she was upset to lose her 100% attendance) but having a broken wrist/hand got her an express pass (as I like to call it) to leave class early, be first in the queue for lunch and be excused from PE and dance for two weeks. In my day, it was a handwritten note from my Mum explaining why I couldn’t take part in PE. Now its a trip to the nurse to have a risk assessment to make sure its safe enough for her to be at school and whether an iPad is required. I honestly feel the world has gone mad but if she’s safe, she’s safe.

McFly – The 9 Year Wait

You may remember last month that #McFlymusic was trending across the twitter network. A one-off gig in November at the O2, sadly after not getting any during pre-sales and the same on general release. I had my ever hopefully fingers crossed that they would release more dates and it paid off!

Now, I have been a McFly fan since I was 24 ish (give or take a few years). When I was pregnant with my daughter in 2006/2007 their Motion in the Ocean album was pretty much on repeat in our house. Somewhere along the way, it must have stuck because she’s 12 now and she adores them and she was heartbroken to realise that they are now ‘grown-ups’ with marriages, mortgages and kids and not currently running around museums.

A few years ago, I was lucky enough to see McBusted at the O2. We paid through the nose through a reseller site, something that I now have come to realise is only fuelling their profits and it should all be banned! It was one of the best concerts I have ever attended (I’ve been to a few). I like many others, waited for McFly to reform and announce a tour, sadly we would have to wait for 9 years!

I am so thankful that come May 2020, I will be sharing with my daughter the beauty that is McFly at the Brighton Centre. This won’t be her first concert as that was earlier this year when we saw the Backstreet Boys but I had my first concert experience at the Brighton Centre back in 1997 (don’t quote me on the year).

I spent my teens along with my Mum, my cousins and some friends concert hopping, at times it was an expensive hobby when bands often toured yearly at that point but I loved every minute of it. I know that McFly will not disappoint, now begins the long eight-month wait!

September Faves


How I Met Your Mother: Last month, I mentioned how I was watching ‘How I Met Your Mother,’ I finally got through all nine seasons and it was an emotional end, I agree a little frustrating and I would have written it slightly differently but the moment it finished I wanted to start all over again ‘have you met Ted’.

Supernatural: I’m still working my way through Supernatural, currently on season 10. I love it but I find it heavy going sometimes and I find myself flipping between something a little more light-hearted and Supernatural.

Friends: 25 years of Friends! How is that possible? Generations upon generations are still turning on or scrolling through Netflix to watch this iconic show. I’m currently re-watching Friends from the beginning to mark the 25th anniversary. I really have forgotten how belly-laughing funny it could be.

Autumn: With Autumn very much with us I am looking forward to quiet nights in watching ‘New Amsterdam’ when it returns for season two and picking up again on ‘Pretty Little Liars’. I am sure there will be a few dramas in there too. If anyone has any other suggestions for a good drama, please let me know.


Playlist: I haven’t been into my music lately, but on my playlist is:

  1. Lewis Capaldi
  2. Shawn Mendes
  3. Katy Perry
  4. Always the Backstreet Boys
  5. McFly

Well that’s September

We ended September by an Autumn walk in the rain because in England it’s just the thing to do before a Sunday roast that I think we are getting old!

Autumnal Walk in the rain
Autumn Walk in the Rain

Please let me know if you did anything interesting in September? Do you have any Autumn traditions? Do you rate Autumn over any other season?

Coming in October

  1. My Birthday
  2. Disneyland Paris – Day 3&4
  3. Autumn planning
  4. Halloween
  5. Pumpkin patch

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Thank you for reading

Gem x

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