Olympic torch

I’ll be totally honest here and tell you that I have had no interest what-so-ever in the biggest sporting event in the world. Even the World Cup fails to get my goat up until towards the very end and then England are knocked out and life returns to normal again. But this time it’s the Olympics. It feels like life won’t really return to normal as quickly this time. I mean, we’ve spent millions and millions this time. For that amount of money, it needs to linger a bit, doesn’t it? So anyway. I’m not about to start ranting about the amount of money we’ve spent on hosting the Olympics. If you want to hear about that, just pop down to any local pub, open any newspaper or go and visit your gran. I’m more of the belief that if we didn’t spend it on the olympics, we’d spend it on something else similar anyway (never mind the fact that my local hospital is having to make £50 million cuts and the teachers at my school were told they have almost zero budgets for September… but I’m not here to complain about money, remember?). No, this post is more about the fact that I have been sucked in.

This week we’ve had an Olympic themed week and I have to say that sporting fever is now running rife in the Ghostwriter household. Thanks to the fabulous e-book, Fun and frugal- enjoying the summer holidays the thrifty way, the children and I have been learning all about the Greek games with crafts and activities. This is what we have done:

We made medals, trophies and torches with red, white and blue flames

We baked red, white and blue cakes (ok, so the awful Stork liquid made the mixture so yellow that the blue ended up green and the red ended up brown… and they were terribly soggy, but still…)

We made Olympic medal pizza and Greek inspired salads

We talked about the Olympics rings and started planning our own games

Olympic dinner

We ran obstacle races

We watched the opening ceremony.

Olympic trophy

And so what do you think of it all? Have you been sucked in by the re-creation of the English countryside and the absolutely fantastic direction by Danny Boyle? I have. Say what you like, but that opening ceremony was fantastic. And when The Big One asked me why we had to watch it, my reply of “This is a piece of history. Like when I made you watch the Royal Wedding…” was only really a little tongue in cheek.

This is a piece of history. A very expensive piece of history, but still history none the less. There’s no point moaning about the fact that a couple of football players refused to sing the National anthem. There’s even less point in banging on about the mistakes (yes, getting the flag wrong was a massive balls-up but let’s move on. Although not to the extent of the Daily Mail’s Jan Moir. She writes to North Korea: “You haven’t got much of a reputation to lose. So stop sulking and get over it.” (Daily Mail, 27.07.12) I mean, come on. I thought the Olympics was all about celebrating different cultures and traditions. I thought all participating countries were deserving of respect. But that might just be me. Let’s apologise and start over, Jan.

For me, the Olympics is a jolly good show and a chance to inspire my children a little bit. The Big One does gymnastics so we’ll be watching that with interest and the toddler is looking forward to the running and the football too. I’m of the thought now that the Olympics are here. If we hadn’t paid X amount to put on a decent show, we would be moaning about how we never get anything right. As it is, last night’s show was fantastic (especially the musical montage) and I’m hoping the actual games will be just as enthralling. Embrace it. Enjoy it. Savour a piece of history for your kids. And when it’s all over? Well, then as you were.