We were so happy to be invited to a very special event at London Zoo to celebrate the launch of the new Pooh bear range of postage stamps.
Those of you that read my previous post will have seen the stamps and know that Royal Mail kindly donated a set for my Children's Trust competition.
The Winnie-the-Pooh stamp collection, issued on 12 October, celebrates the enduring popularity and appeal of the honey-loving character, famously created by A.A. Milne featuring the the original illustrations to the stories by E H Shepherd.
I was looking forward to the launch event for a number of reasons. Firstly, I have a bit of a secret passion for stamps. There's something quaint and romantic about sending and receiving letters and cards with proper stamps on - not like the soulless printed labels you often get now. Of course its always lovely to receive a letter through the post nowadays rather than an email.
Secondly, Ruby loves the zoo! She particularly loves London Zoo as it involves a train ride to get there. She is also a huge fan of Winnie the Pooh and her bedroom is still decorated with the Pooh curtains and pictures we put up when it was a nursery. We often read from her giant book of Pooh stories at bedtime and she still sleeps with her faithful Pooh, Tigger and Eeyore. She has long since mangled her cot mobile but still plays with the wind-up musical part, now making up her own words to the tune which go something like this:
"Winnie the Pooh
Winnie the Pooh
He did a great, big, fat smelly poo
At Piglets house"
Not sure those lyrics are quite authentic, but they seem to make her snort with laughter every time.
Finally, I was excited about my first 'blogger' event and the chance to meet some fellow bloggers. Sadly my nerves took over, and if I never got to say 'Hi' please forgive me - I am vewy shy. Next time I will be more brave. Luckily though I sat with the lovely Claire (@zooarchaeologist) and Pippa (@PippaD) and their families who made me feel very welcome and I'm very pleased to have made new friends with these lovely ladies.
So, the event itself firstly involved us making a mammoth journey which Ruby was thrilled about. No worries for her that the train on a Sunday took forever, or that the tube line was closed for engineering work, or that the bus we were directed too was not in fact direct but involved changing at Camden Town (have you tried negotiating a bus change at Camden on a Sunday morning with the hoards of market shoppers?). No, no this all added to the excitement and by the time we arrived at the Mappin Pavilion in the zoo she was raring to go.
There was a lovely lunch laid on, with a spread of dainty sandwiches and cakes and gallons of coffee and fruit juice. Once we had feasted on our tea party, all the kids settled down to listen to Winnie the Pooh stories. We got to see the beautiful new stamps and then there was plenty of time for monkeying around in the zoo afterwards.
A really lovely day.
You can find out more about Royal Mail stamps by following them on twitter, and look out for the new Christmas range of Wallace and Gromit ones.
This event was sponsored by Royal Mail