Photo gallery index, 1999

Here are a few photos showing our family, our house, and life here in Cyprus in 1999. You should be able to click on any of them to get bigger pictures.

Daniel reading by the heater

Daniel reading In January we use the kerosene heater quite a bit of the time. This year it was quite sunny but still distinctly chilly, so we ran the heater during the daytime as well as the evenings. Our cat Cleo loved to sit in front of it, and Daniel enjoyed lying next to her, reading. We never needed to worry about literacy in our home education, because both the boys read avidly!

Weeds in our garden

Weeds in our garden Now the rain had started, even though it was sporadic, the garden turned greener almost every day with a wide variety of weeds. We didn't want to use weedkiller (as recommended) so we used a strimmer to keep the worst of them down and to give a vaguely lawn-like appearance. I did try to do some weeding but it seemed like a never-ending task!>

Tim playing guitar and singing

Tim playing guitar and singing Tim had been taking guitar lessons since September and by February was able to play and sing simple songs from various books. We enjoyed hearing him singing from time to time - note the Cypriot classical style, holding the guitar on the left knee rather than the more usual Western-style right knee.>

Beach at Larnaka

Beach at Larnaka
In the summer the sea-front at Larnaka is covered with tourists, but in the winter it lies empty. Sea-weed gathers in the stormier weather, and after this is collected (we assume for farms) the sand looks clean and fresh, ready for the next season. Sometimes we go for walks along the sea-front on the sunnier days.

Our new kittens

Our new kittens It wasn't what we planned, but Cleo had other ideas - and in the last week of February she gave birth to three kittens. Here they are in early March when their eyes had opened and they were beginning to take an interest in the world. We called them One, Two and Three at first, but this soon changed to Sophia, Jemima and Tigger. Sophia was clearly very intelligent, Jemima waddled like a puddleduck, and Tigger was the most bouncy.

A rose in our garden in Cyprus

A rose We were a bit surprised to find a rose-bush in our front garden; it looked a bit straggly but we watered it in the summer and pruned the worst parts away. To our amazement a beautiful rose bloomed in March - Richard took this photograph. Just as well because it was the only really good rose!

Cleo takes the kittens exploring

Cleo takes the kittens exploring Early in April Cleo decided her kittens were old enough to go outside. So she carefully herded them out of the back door and down the steps. She was an extremely good mother despite being so young - we think she was probably only about seven months old when she had them. The kittens loved playing on the patio and discovering such exciting things as a coiled hosepipe and leaves blowing around in the wind.

The beach at Kiti

The beach at Kiti We had more than one set of visitors this spring, including some in the Easter holidays in April. We took the opportunity to have some time off, and visited Kiti one day where the boys - with assistance - built a large sandcastle on the otherwise deserted bech. Here's the preparation stage, with a ring of stones marking out the boundaries.

Sophia and Jemima

The kittens Sophia and Jemima Sadly Tigger, the youngest kitten, became ill and died in April despite my best efforts at nursing him and some medication from the vet. We were devastated, but this did persuade us that we should keep the other two rather than finding homes for them. Here they are one May afternoon climbing on my lap.

Flower festival in Larnaka

Flower festival in Larnaka Every May, apparently, there is a flower festival in Larnaka with several organisations producing the most amazing floats out of flowers. They then parade along the sea-front one Sunday eevning. Richard took this picture of a really stunning display amongst the entries.

Tim sings with his guitar

Tim sings with his guitar At last - after nearly two years here- we discovered that there are other home educators in Cyprus! We were invited to an 'end-of-year' event in June hosted by one of the families in Limassol. All the students had the opportunity to display some work, or talk about what they'd done, or play an instrument; Tim decided to sing the song 'Abba, Father' accompanied classical-style on his guitar.

Jemima learns about the computer

Jemima learns about the computer As the kittens grew up, they wanted to join in more and more of whatever we were doing. Jemima, who seemed to become most attached to me, was particularly interested in my computer. Here she is sitting on the keyboard, watching the printer and wondering how she can make it all work...

'Twelfth Night' at Kurium in Cyprus

'Twelfth Night' at Kurium Every year in July there is a Shakespearian production put on at the Kurium amphitheatre, just outside Limassol. This year the play was 'Twelfth Night', and we took the opportunity to go and see it. This photo shows the stage at sunset (much earlier here than in the UK) when the play was about to begin.

Campsite at Troodos

Campsite at Troodos The boys and I spent three weeks in the Troodos mountains at a course run by Richard's work organisation for newcomers - even though we had by now been here nearly two years! It was lovely to get out of the heat and humidity of Larnaka to a cooler and dryer atmosphere.

Yogurt ice-creams

Yogurt ice-creams One of our favourite places in Larnaka itself is the yogurt ice-cream shop near St Lazarus Church. Here we can choose different combinations of fruit which are whipped with frozen yogurt to create a most delicious concoction - and it has the added benefit of being 95% fat-free! Here are Daniel and Timothy in August trying out yet another variety.

Jemima trying to keep cool

Jemima trying to keep cool Summer in Cyprus isn't much fun for cats with their fur coats, although they moulted heavily. They spent their time trying to find places to stay cool, and were particularly keen on our rattan bookcases. Here's Jemima looking most uncomfortable lying across some CDs.

Completed jigsaws

Completed jigsaws It was too hot to do anything much during July and August, so we got out some of our 1000-piece jigsaws and did them slowly on the dining room table. At mealtimes we simply covered them over with a big tablecloth. By September, though, we wanted to use the table in the mornings for home education work so we put all the puzzles away - but not until I'd taken a photo to show that we really did do them!

Tim building with Lego

Tim building with Lego Over the years we've built up quite a collection of Lego, and it was another activity which the boys enjoyed doing - sometimes with friends - during the warmer weather. Here's Tim deeply involved in something complicated..

The amphitheatre at Kurium in Cyprus

The amphitheatre in Kurium in Cyprus We discovered that - when there isn't a theatre production going on - the amphitheatre at Kurium is part of a historic site that can be visited. In October we had yet more visitors, and spent a day there seeing mosaics and the remants of a large villa as well as exploring the amphitheatre.

Swings at the Salt Lake Park in Larnaka

Swings at the Salt Lake Park In Larnaka itself the Salt Lake provides an interesting feature all year round, and the park next to it is excellent for a short walk or bike ride. There are even some swings amongst the trees, which Tim and a friend are enjoying in this picture.

Bat-and-ball game

Bat-and-ball game Daniel wanted to buy a bat-and-ball game but we were unable to find anything of the sort in Cyprus - so in November he used some creativity and built his own. The base is from a parasol, weighted with water; the pole is from an old broom, the string was lying around on a shelf somewhere,and the ball is an old tennis ball. It worked pretty well, too.

Computer dissection

Computer dissection At eleven, Tim was showing considerable interest in electronics and particularly computers. Since I know nothing at all about this topic, Richard spent some time teaching him the basics. Here he is one evening supervising while Tim begins to take apart an old computer salvaged from the office.

Christmas concert in Larnaka

Christmas concert in Larnaka Each year the inter-church choir organise a concert in the town hall. Here they are in December - Tim is part of the choir, as always, and Daniel is playing his clarinet on the left of the photograph. At one point it looked as though he might not be able to play, since he broke his arm earlier in the month; however the doctor managed to cut away some of the cast to enable him to join in.

Daniel and Sophia

Daniel and Sophia We returned to the UK for Christmas 1999 and the Millennium, although planning to return in February. Various people were looking after our house and cats in our absence, but we were still sad to say goodbye to the cats for six weeks. Sophia had become particularly attached to Daniel, and he was convinced she was unhappy to see us go. His plaster-cast is showing clearly in this photo.