This coming year is probably going to be the biggest so far for N now he’s 11.  

The final year of primary school, Likely changing schools and lots of friends going separate directions.

Moving out of mini tennis and into junior tennis.

Getting ever closer to teen years. Eek.

It’s certainly been a development year. N’s a lot more sure of himself, his opinions and when he should speak up.

For an 11 year old I’m always surprised by his understanding of goings on in the world, and how easily he understands things.

Everything’s quite black or white. Facts are something N loves  – whether gleaned from youtubers, Fifa, Farming magazines or anywhere he can get them. His brain just retains them. And I’m often amazed by how much of his very young childhood he can remember. Sometimes he comes out with things that I’ve not really remembered until he says them, and they’re spot on. Although ask him what he had for breakfast the same day and he’ll not remember that. 

N can be empathetic to others, and evidently does listen to other people’s views as well as having strong opinions of his own. He’s very kind and will often decide to donate his own money to charity. 

I’m not sure if he really does believe in Father Christmas, there was a slight slip up in a comment that he covered up. I’m thinking he might really know but just be humouring me to get a stocking. He’s certainly not fussed about the tooth fairy anymore.

Thankfully his tonsillitis issues seem to be fewer, and less hard hitting. We can hopefully continue to hold off the worst of it as we’ve mostly managed this last year.

He has a great group of friends at school and tennis, and I love how he emails one of his farming friends to chat. I’m glad he’s a boy and hopefully that will make his friendships smoother where girls’ friendships can be more complex.

Sport is still a favourite, and this year N’s discovered an enjoyment for football. Playing but also the facts side of things. It’s a struggle to shut him up once he gets on the subject. He plays plenty of tennis still, and loves hockey when he gets the chance to play that in school too.

He loves the farm, although is more picky about what he enjoys. He enjoys being out with the dogs, and they worship him (possibly because he has the treats!). He has his favourite calves and is always trying to persuade his dad to give him another calf. He likes helping chop wood and move it, getting the chance to drive the gator around on the farm. And he’ll help with forking up the silage for the cattle to easily reach. He thinks this will help build his arm muscles up. 

Family are really important to him, and he’s lucky to have all of his immediate family with both sets of cousins nearby. Hopefully later this year Covid will have reduced in severity enough that we can all get together properly again for the first time in 2 years.

One thing I despair of is the socks and hoodies left strewn around the house. One day, maybe he’ll learn to take them upstairs. As for not properly cleaning his football boots, and never emptying and cleaning out his lunchbox without me asking…I’m hoping he’ll get with the programme on those asap!

Hopefully this year N will have a great end to primary school, have an easy and successful transition to secondary school. And still continue friendships with friends even if they all end up in different schools.

On his birthday, he wore the allowed non uniform to school. Then Domino’s pizza for tea. The day after he requested pancakes because he didn’t have room on his birthday. His birthday cake was a victoria sponge. He’s all about food but likes what he likes so no fussy cake requests.

The 11th  birthday party

This year we risked the indoor group party at a nearby trampolining park Jump In. N had never been before there, although most of the other children had. Nine of them went, they had a great party host, and enjoyed bouncing and playing dodgeball for an hour. Then pizza for lunch. I’d ordered an extra pizza in case they were really hungry thinking at worst we’d have leftover to take home. Even minus 1 boy who didn’t make it, and another not eating anything, they still demolished all the pizzas. It was a good job I ordered the extra one.  I don’t think with the full 10 eating, there would have been enough for hungry 10, 11 and a 13 year old boys.

Thankfully I’ve never had to make an ornate complicatae birthday cake, and he decided on a chocolate traybake with smarties to decorate.

11th birthday cake chocolate traybake with smarties

We kept party bags simple doing water bottles with sweets inside which went down well.

sorting out sweets for party bag gifts

The age 11 birthday interview

1,  What’s your favourite colour?

Blue

2, What’s your favourite toy?

Football

3, What’s your favourite food?

Um, yorkshire pudding. (Granny’s Yorkshire pudding)

4, What’s your favourite tv show?

Clarkson’s Farm

5, Who’s your favourite Youtuber?

Erm, Mr Beast. That’s quite a tough question.  (Goes to list online to check). That’s hard, I think I have 3…4…5. I’ll go with Thogden. There’s actually 7 Youtubers I watch.

6, What does Mum do?

Pfft, you know what you do. You work for W***. Didn’t I get that right last year?

7, What does Dad do?

Swear. Swear and farming.

8, If you had one wish, what would it be?

Um, I don’t know.

9, What do you want to be when you grow up?

A farmer, or a footballer (but that’s very unlikely).

10, What’s your favourite thing to do with Mum?

Erm, do we do much at the moment? How am I meant to answer that? (He seems to have forgotten Saturday shopping which he enjoys seeing what’s around town, watching films, playing board games, playing table tennis, cooking and baking).

11, What’s your favourite thing to do with Dad?

Cut wood.

12, If you could go anywhere, where would you go?

At the moment nowhere, Covid. Maybe go camping.

13, What makes you happy?

Food.

14, What makes you scared?

I have no idea.

15, What’s your favourite sport?

Football

16, What’s your favourite film?

I don’t really watch films.

17, What’s your favourite band or singer?

 At the moment, Five Finger Death Punch (the OH and he found them at random on Youtube, and they play a couple of their songs a lot).

18, What’s your favourite book?

Adam Kay’s new Anatomy book (He’s only read about 2 chapters so far!).

19, What’s your favourite thing about school?

PE

20. What’s your biggest achievement / thing you’re most proud of?

Improving my football.

Look back on the 10th birthday interview

So that’s the 11th birthday and the birthday interview complete for another year. I don’t think we’ll be continuing but it’s been a lovely insight into things he likes and doesn’t like through the years.

I’m quite sad h’s got caught up in the football obsession like so many of his friends, sad to see his interest in playing team tennis matches waning as well as his earlier request to stop playing tournaments for a bit. I’m hoping he might change his mind once the summer comes – and hoping that the new coach who’s doing club tennis that he’s not a fan of won’t last, so we can get back to playing informal Sunday tennis again. However, hopefully enjoying football will help with settling into secondary school wherever he ends up.

Hopefully this will be a fun and successful year for him, as he grows ever closer to teenage years (eek!).

2 Comments

  1. Happy birthday to N. 11 years old is such a big year. Good luck to your boy. It sounds like he’s a good lad, you must be so proud. It sounds like he had a great party. x

    • Emma

      Thanks Kim. It was quite a quiet birthday, no fuss, but he did enjoy the trampolining.

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