Saturday, 31 December 2011

the year endeth....

2011 has been an eventful time,
so i thought i'd write this wee rhyme.

There has been winter, spring and some summer too,
My hair grew lots so i got a new 'do'.
The little tike was a baby and now is a toddler,
Giving me lots of laughs, tears and of course blog fodder.

My garden is growing and taking shape,
A flower bed and veggie patch i did make,
We have holidayed in suffolk, wales and the lakes,
Sitting in cafes, and eating, eating lots of cakes.

I have hopes and dreams for 2012, but most of all I just hope,
That the weeks aren't too hard, and I can manage to cope,
With the fun and trials of being a mum, 
a friend, a wife ( still with a good bum!)

This year i've shed tears for myself and others,
Who have lost sons, friends and brothers.
There is always joy, loss and much more,
I hope i can stay smiling and not become a bore.

I am now going to see the new year in, with an early night,
Why try to stay up late and wait for midnight ?!
So here's to saying 'goodbye' to last year,
It has been an interesting one but i'm glad to see it's rear.

Wednesday, 28 December 2011

Christmas times and thoughts.

Well, Christmas has been and gone, but it has been good. Really good. There have been the usual cold viruses lingering, but they have been mostly kept in their place with a bit of rest and a lot of night nurse.

Family, it's all about family really isn't it, and I am super fortunate to have a great one. Yes they are loud, and a little stressful at times, but they love me, and I love them. So really, that's all I can ask for. Oh, and they buy me nice presents which helps too !

A few (slightly cheesy) photos

My little family-not very often we get a photo with all of us.....

This picture captures a Christmas moment perfectly, slightly hilarious charade taking place.....

Such mild weather, W and her Gramps enjoying the garden.... cuteness.

As well as riding in wheelbarrows, Little tike has got the hang of unwrapping gifts, It's such a pleasure to see her little face light up as she sees another plastic toy waiting to greet her with noises, sounds, and a general assault on the senses.

I have been thinking quite a lot about Mary this year. Travelling on a donkey of some type while in the end stages of pregnancy can't have been the best really can it ? And why someone didn't give her somewhere better than a stable to stay when in labour, i don't know. Someone in my family did point out to me that in those days people had lots of babies, so it was a bit more normal. But, you know, I still think someone could have swapped rooms with her while she was in labour, I am all for natural childbirth, but in a stable with cattle? i think that is taking things a little far. And maybe the shepherds should have tried to bring a midwife with at least some gas and air and a bit of paracetemol for the after pains ? but no, a sheep. nice one gentlemen.

But Jesus was born, and regardless of how damaged his birth left Mary, he arrived. Well done Mary. Well done God for sending Him. But maybe you could have caused people to discover pain relief and skilful midwifery a few thousand years earlier.........just saying.

Tuesday, 20 December 2011

Ten on Tuesday

Wow that week has gone super fast..... for me it has been all about shoes, snow and slavery !

1. The little tike has reminded me today of her energetic self, her ability to find things she shouldn't and generally get up to mischief - the week of sitting on the coach watching tv was nice, but she is definitely on the mend now.

2. I fear her obsession with fire may be growing, beginning to regret teaching her to blow out her birthday candle.....pyromaniac in the making ?

3. ...Is the number of converse shoes/boots she now has .....little bit of confused ebay bidding took place this week... ooops. 

4. Her first trip to clarks for her proper 'first shoes' took place this week. Her beautiful Grandma came for the day, and we had a little trip out. It was one of those special times I'll always remember. Being that W's first word other than dad daddy and hiya, was 'shoes' it was kind of enevitable that she would enjoy her trip to clarks. 'shoos, shooe, shooes' she exclaimed as she ran around the shop. Bless her, then she saw the bag with charlie bear on who she calls 'ted' and her little one year old mind nearly blew it's top :)
So clarks is now her new favourite shop, can't wait to introduce to 'office' and Schuh' one day though, cos lets face it, the shoes in there are far nicer !
I was too knackered to have my camera with me, but the memories are firmly etched in my brain.

5. Snow, It made a little appearance last week.

6. This Sunday was our first Christmas party of the season, starting with the in laws annual get together.

Little tike and her Nan who she loves very much. She is one blessed little lady to have so many doting Grandparents.

7. Been thinking a bit more about the whole slavery issue, have been thinking about how when slavery was abolished all those years ago, there would have been so many people who had slaves, who when it became illegal to force people to work for no payment, they wouldn't be able to have afforded the help. So they would have had to go without, which would have been a huge change for many households/farms and businesses. There would been luxuries cut where the help was essential to the business so they had to go without other things. Or there would have been ladies all over the world suddenly needing to learn a skill or two around the house. Just food for thought about all the things we buy which we deem as essential which may be fuelling the slave trade today.

8. Got a bit of birthday money through this week, so have just bought myself a few little treats from Laura Ashley home. The sort of things I would never be able to find in pound stretcher on my weekly budget, so i'm VERY excited. I love a quality household accessory !

9. I think Christmas sometimes brings out the worst in people... don't believe me? Just pop to the tesco near me, drive a car around and see what you think then .......Christmas shopping does bad things to people. talk about impatience. But it can also bring out the comedy side to a shopping trip. ( see previous post )

10. All these lovely gifts ready for the big day.......Don't think W realises that between her and a piece of stripey fabric is a lovely new teddy !


Well, happy festivities one and all, see you on the other side.....

Oh yeah, and Jesus was born........... He's the reason for the season !!!

Monday, 19 December 2011


So, I just made a brief trip to the supermarket to buy the Christmas Turkey. We ( well, hubster and brother ) are cooking it this year, as I was beginning to feel a little nervous that we wouldn't get one ..... all it would take was a freak blizzard and all the trucks could get stuck, you laugh, but it could happen, and I wasn't being the person responsible for a turkeyless Christmas, heck no.

I step inside the hooooge supermarket, and ask at the customer service desk if the fresh Turkeys were in, as soon as the words left my lips, I knew I was in for a less than straightforward answer.....the guy looked at me blankly, then kind of murmured... ' erm, i'm not sure, but, er, well I think it will be sometime this week' I managed to hold the smile from my face, or at least make it look like a 'thankyou for helping me' smile, not a ' REALLY ? well i never expected that the turkey's would be sold the week running up to Christmas' smile. He then turned to the lady next to him, who was asked the turkey related question... she paused, looked up a bit, in a thoughtful kind of way and said, very seriously, ' I think it will be sometime this week' .......Oh, i am glad I was on my own, or laughter would surely have followed. So I (very politely) said I would just go and have a look, and thanked them for their 'help'.

When I arrived at the chilly isle full of vacuum packed meat, sure enough, there were a few turkeys lurking in the bottom of the chiller. Not being able to find quite the weight I wanted, I asked another unsuspecting shop assistant if he could look for the size I was after in the store cupboard thingy out the back. He very kindly obliged and after a few minutes returned with exactly the same size that was already there, so I said I would just have a look and decide what size to get, just as I thought he had walked off, he proceeded to tell me that, in the store cupboard there were turkeys 'this small' - hands cupped into a small size, and how it was really cruel to kill a baby turkey. I was unsure weather to break the news that killing a baby turkey wasn't really any more cruel than killing a big turkey, when he said ' the little ones have got so much more to live for, the older ones don't mind cos they have had their life'.................... where to start.....?! 'um, well, i'm not sure if these turkeys really have a good life at all, they were probably squashed in a dark barn with lots of other turkeys anyway.' ....... he looked a bit perplexed and said, 'oh, i thought it was just chickens which got treated like that', and so we carried on, having a very lovely chat about the cruelty to animals thing. 
After finally selecting my turkey, which has to be said, is a lot bigger than we need, but I felt I had to buy one and couldn't bear going to another supermarket tomorrow to go through the same process all over again, I dragged it to the checkout, at which point the lady said to me '£40 for a turkey, that's well expensive' !  Not entirely sure their manager would be too pleased with such comments, but all in all, the staff were very friendly, and most definitely amusing.
So despite the fact that our bird hasn't lived a 'happy running around outside kind of life', I wouldn't have had quite such a fun time trying to buy it at the farm shop now would I ....?

Now to fit it in the fridge.......

Thursday, 15 December 2011

So, I'm writing this post on husbandos iPhone, under the bedcovers as I'm In bed early with my little tike trying to get her to sleep. She's been puking and coughing so I have taken pitty on her...... A decision I may regret.its hard to be too harsh on her when she's crying a. Dry sad croaky cry. Thinking she was feeling very unwell I decided to get into bed with her to provide comfort and love in her hour of need.... She's not stupid, she is now sat up bouncing around peering over saying 'muuuuum'.... She knows whose in charge ! And it certainly isn't me !

Tuesday, 13 December 2011

Ten on Tuesday

Yay it's Tuesday again....

1. Festive loveliness encapsulated in one cute pair of slippers....

 2. The little tike has been a bit poorly this week, this is where she has mostly been sitting, peering over the sofa at her beloved 'small potatoes' episodes.....Doesn't she just have the cutest little neck !?

3.A few shots of a view I can see from our sitting room, the sky finally showed it's true blueness for a few hours yesterday ...a welcome change from the dull grey drudgery.

4. I am hoping to take W to her first Christmas party on friday, I will not be making her sit on Santa's knee though, - there is something a little odd about that I think !

5. On the iphoto programme on our computer, there is a setting where you can 'de noise' your photos- wouldn't it be great if you could have one for your mind ? Mine is a very noisy place most of the time.

6. I am hoping to make some gingerbread this week, I even have all the ingredients before I start baking. So for once in my life, if said baking does occur, I may even follow the recipe precisely.

7. I'm not entirely sure what is going on with our position in the 'eurozone', husbando tells me it's very rocky and 'altogether concerning', I cannot bring myself to loose sleep over it , and have decided that if the economy falls apart completely, I will run away and join an amish community somewhere, I think i'd suit one of their head coverings, and imagine I could quite get into quilting. 

8. We have no chimney in our house, bit concerned about how santa will enter our home this year.....maybe he'll need one of these......

9. This week I am thankful for the NHS once more, how many people across the world can drive to their local pharmacy on Sunday, get to see a lovely out of hours Dr who was just as friendly as can be, and walk off with some medication and not have to pay. ( yes I know we pay in tax, but that's another thing altogether, and yes we did have to wait for an hour, but who cares - an hour is nothing in the grand scheme of things)

10. I am a bit sad there won't be a Gavin and Stacey Christmas special this year......
I often wonder what Dor is up to ? you gotta love the foul mouthed, elderly welsh lady !!

Pop over to the brilliant blog apartyofseven to see more 'ten on tuesdays' ! 

Sunday, 11 December 2011

Teamwork is the way to go....

I love being part of a team, 'Team Deane' my other half calls us, He named us that soon after we met, at our wedding we went out to the 'A team' theme tune. 

But half of our team is often a little bit useless in the practical and physical activity stakes, and can often be found in tears in bed at 8pm, so the other half has to do the rest. He's a legend and just plods along regardless.
I've always loved being on a team, any team really. I love hard work and achieving a task altogether, I miss being able to play my part in equal measure to everyone else. Sitting by and watching just isn't as fun, and definitely less fulfilling. ( unless the task is unravelling tangled up wires - that has to be one of my least favourite things ) I HATE wires. 

Today though, our little team did good. Most of the night was up with our little tike, coughing and sicking and generally crying. As the new day dawned we pulled together, didn't do that 'who is the most tired' thing, (which I defy any parents to say they have never done) and managed 'niceness' all day, both got a daytime kip to top up our sleep levels, and have ended the day ill and tired, but with that nice feeling you get when you know you haven't let to bad stuff beat you ! ......

It's great when it works like that isn't it ? 

Saturday, 10 December 2011

A girl can dream......

Lying in bed watching saturday kitchen, and it's only adding to my hankering for being able to cook a 3 course meal for friends, oh, and take a trip to a hot hot beach.

Today i'd like to cook...

A delicious thai mango salad to start ......

Then, think i'd do a tasty lamb tagine

And finish with a lovely Lemon cheesecake with ginger biscuit base. ( Cheescake - LOVE cheesecake - who doesn't ? )

actually salivating looking at this photo.....

Then lets jump on a plane and head to ....  Goa, I am a bit of a beach bum at heart. The thing I love about being on the beach, is it's life at a very simple level. No point in wearing makeup or doing your hair. Sand between your toes, bread and cheese with an ice cream to finish off. Being on the beach brings out the best in me, I feel at home in the waves and am just a bit lazy and don't like to wear shoes or preen myself for hours. Looking good in england takes quite a lot of effort doesn't it ? waging war on the frizzy hair inducing damp air, make up to cover up the sallow skin the winter produces. ......

take me to the beach....

this week i'd like to go to Goa, or Barbados would do......please, thank you.

Friday, 9 December 2011

a serious of unfortunate events

So, I did have a few thoughts to which are slightly more interesting and meaningful than these, but it's been a loooong week and my brain is too tired. So instead,  I shall share my series of unfortnate evens....

On Sunday my phone battery died, and it slowly dawned on me that I actually didn't have a clue where it was, and hadn't seen it for nearly a week. Sure it is in the house somewhere, yes it is stupid that I can't just look for it, but you try living in a 3 story house, with very limited physical energy while looking after a 1yr old and then come back and tell me if it's stupid or not ! ( this is what I have been telling myself all week, just to make myself feel better....)

On Monday......First time in months I had use of our car, but in between unlocking the car, and putting Willow in it I then went to try and drive and the car key had fallen off my keyring so alas i couldn't use the car. And pushchair in there too. Oh and I woke up with a dicky tummy so that made for fun frequent trips to the toilet. 

Then came Tuesday, no huge catastrophes there, largely due to the fact that my very kind friend looks after Willow for me for much of the day, so it's mainly sleeping and tv.......not much can go wrong during those activities.

On Wednesday, Phone still missing,which just makes life inconvenient doesn't it?  Trip to the eye doctor person, was meant to take 1 hr, took 2, Very lovely Dr, but putting eye drops in a 1yr olds eyes is never easy or pleasant for anyone involved. W had to wait for her pupils to dialate so they could see in them or 1 hr of running around the waiting room ensued. When it was all finally over, I'd long missed the taxi I had booked, then had to wait in the hail for another one. Willow fell asleep at the wrong time, so no rest for Mummy. By end of day I was ready to calopse - and did so in bed, shortly after husbando returned home.

Arriving on Thursday,Woke up as exhausted as expected, bored Willow, so thought i'd try to go out to toddler group, got there, lots of noise, and snotty children all in one small space, shortly after arriving it became apparent that W was unusually tired and rosy cheeked, clung to me and moaned, couldn't go home, taxi booked for an hour later, no phone to ring to change it, had to sit it out. Tired crying child, Tired (inwardly crying me) oh and yes I forgot her dummy too. 
Shopping due to be delivered at 8pm, at 9.30pm husband comes upstairs to ask where I thought it had got to, after a few calls realised I hadn't pressed 'checkout' no food for us.

Friday................ not much for breakfast in this house ! But the sun came out inbetween hail storms, so that was a lovely treat in amongst all the catastrophes

Maybe next week will run a little more smoothly......?

Tuesday, 6 December 2011

Ten on Tuesday

So, I had ten, but then they fell out of my brain somewhere in the midst of changing a nappy and decorating the tree.

So a new ten it will have to be......

1. For once this weekend, all the rooms in our house were semi tidy at the same that hasn't happened.... ever in this house.( moved in 14 months ago) It felt good, and probably won't happen again for a loooooong time.

2. I am taking on the 'christmas clothes' tradition that exists in liverpool, great excuse to buy willow a cute dress. 

3. This week Willow experienced her first hail storm without the luxury of a rain cover, the rain cover and proper pushchair were locked in the car, I lost the key = wet Willow. Bless her.

4. I've never liked Tesco, but now really don't like it, it's big and brash, but the closest shop to me, so i'm there far more often than I would like. Souless and mass produced blaaaaaaaaaaa. Yes I still buy the vast majority of things we need from there though, so I shall step off my soap box....( for now )

5. There is lots of watering can fascination at the moment..... and yes she did try to drink from it - ew

6. I'm getting very much into the advent readings of this fella called Richard Rohr, he's a Benedictine Monk and has a beautiful approach to Jesus, Spirituality and what it means to walk with God. Just what the dr ordered for advent. ( although a 'Facebook friend' of mine gets Marilyn Munro cigarettes and false eyelashes in her advent calendar so surely that could be a contender?!)

7. This week we watched the bin men from the upstairs window, not the front door. I still felt like a bin man stalker even tho they couldn't see me !

8. I have a beautiful creeper in my garden, which is meant to be dead by this time of year, but it continues to flower.... gotta love a plant's determination

9. I'm trying to implement a 'no computer' sabbath in our house during sunday ( evenings are permitted ) - it's a difficult one..... all my ebay purchases end on that day... But there has to be a break from the WWW doesn't there ?

10. One thing I love to do when energy permits is dig in the garden. I love mud, planting plants, digging out weeds, cold hands, dodging worms, putting in bulbs with the anticipation of spring colour. It's been a while since I've done it, but hoping to get out there soon before the frost sets in.

And as ever, 'ten on tuesday' is hosted by @apartyofseven.... head over to her bloggidy blog blog to see some more..... you might even get a tale of a winter vommiting bug if your lucky....yes she makes puking sound entertaining. 

Sunday, 4 December 2011

more thinkings.......

I'm not entirely what prompted me to write this post today, but here it is...

A while back a friend asked me, 'how do you cope with having been ill for so long, and having a baby to look after ' i just answered her, ' I don't always'  - cos sometimes, I don't. I think 'coping ' is overrated. This weekend has been lovely, and in the 'coping' stakes I am doing fairly well at the moment, but that's not always the case, and I don't think it is for anyone, is it ........?

Today I saw a lady who recently lost her beautiful baby daughter. Last week, a friend whose Son has been tragically taken to be with his maker far sooner than she was ready for. Both are going through horrendous berievement. Of course they will spend days when they can't get out of bed, cos the emotional exhuastion of grief is just too much. But there is a need to dialogue on how 'well' they are coping, or if they'r up and about. Now don't get me wrong, most people I know are hugely compassionate in nature, and aren't rushing any of my friends to be running around with smiles on their faces all day, but our culture seems to be all about the coping doesn't it.

When I watch news footage of wailing ladies in a war torn country kneeling around the body of their loved one, lamenting and crying as their emotional agony has nowhere to go, but escape in a heart felt scream. I think I have a lot to learn from them, from their freedom in expression, their complete submersion in the moment they are going through.

So many people in our society suffer depression at some point in their lives, depression is a far too wider term I think, and is very misunderstood, but much of it is suppressed emotion, denied feelings finally coming to the surface. I am determined to do my best to have days where I don't cope, where I do fall apart a little, where the raw emotion of the small difficulties of my life ( because really, they are small when you think of the grand scheme of things) , or the lives of others around me gets to me. It has too, it will only catch up with me eventually.

I have hair dye to cover up my ageing hair, make up to cover my dark circled eyes, a credit loan to cover up my debt, and happy photos on facebook which publicise the happy shots, but neglect to showcase all the moments in between when there are tears, arguments and grumpiness.

We have to choose a safe place for these feeling to come out ofcourse, a meltdown in tescos is never the best place, but I say lets all give up coping quite so much. Have a pj day, cry your heart out once in a while, and for goodness sake don't tell yourself you should be coping if your not !

Coping is overrated.

Falling apart, every now and then I think is what life is all about.

Saturday, 3 December 2011

If you go down to the woods today....'re sure to find us buying our Christmas tree !

First there was the looking...

 Then there was the selecting...

'Not the Firs Daddy, they drop their pines all over the carpet, a norman Fern is what we need'

Then the transportation.....

 Then Willow had to intervene and 'help'

 Off home, made it in one piece, who needs a roof rack when you have a bit of lino, rope and a foxy husband who can tie any knot in the book.....oh yes, it made it home.....

Then came the decorating....

Festive loveliness......

 A good day was had by all.

Tuesday, 29 November 2011

Ten on Tuesday

......speedily speeding through a quick ten on tuesday

1. We're starting to work on developing some Deane Christmas traditions, so far it's christmas pyjamas for Christmas eve, and a trip to delemere forest to buy the tree are on the list.

2. We had our first night away without our little Tike. Was very lovely, we went to a friend's wedding in the lakes, and stayed in a lovely hotel. Yes, a hotel - not a tent, or a friends spare room, but a HOTEL ! I did miss her, until a small baby on the next table at the wedding started whinging at around 5pm !

3. My Ebay habit is getting a little out of hand. But I did get a great all in one puddle suit for Willow, however, I then discovered that a friend of mine and I who have littlies the same age, had been bidding against each other for the same things. How stupid is that ?

4. The Bin men on our street must think I fancy them, ... Willow loves watching them do their bin man business, so I have to stand there like a lemon with her til all the bins are emptied and the van has driven out of sight.

5.  Chrissy to win 'i'm a celebrity'.........yes I am a trashy tv addict, but I do listen to radio 4 to balance myself out a little.

6. I am hoping that Father Christmas is going to bring me some of these... well I know he is, cos i'm going to buy them on his behalf.....

7. This Sunday, while sitting in a hotel longue, with a of cup of tea and cake in hand, I saw a photo of a Lady with her little baby strapped to her back, a pick axe in her grasp as she walked barefoot to do a days work down a mine..... kind of puts my struggles into perspective a little.

8. Advent is on it's way, this year I am trying to get a bit into the advent thing, to prepare myself a bit to reflect on Jesus and what His birth did/does and continues to mean.

9. Willow has now started saying 'muuuum' in a way I had hoped she wouldn't adopt for at least a few years, a kind of whiney sound. Oh and she also says 'car' like she has been to 'how to speak like a scouser' school.

10. Sorry Joe Mceldrey, but Michael Buble's christmas C D is much better than yours.

Some other blogger ladies I know write a '10' on this here day of the week, check em out if you'r in the mood.......

Monday, 28 November 2011

A few mundane and fanciful thoughts.

Ever since the last episode in the series of 'Beeny's restoration knightmare' I have often found myself wondering how they'r getting on. They have really got under my skin, and i'm not entirely sure why. It could be that there are elements of their lifestyle which i'd like, or things about the way they do things which seem fun. But I have almost come to think of them as people I know, which is of course entirely ridiculous.

For those of you who haven't a clue what i'm on about, Sarah Beeny is a property developing kind of lady, who often hosts tv shows about other people's redevelopment plans. But this time in 'documentary fly on the wall' style, they have followed her and her husbands journey through the restoration of their hooouuuuuuuge country hall/house type mansion......'Rise Hall'.

I think all of us have a TV personality we assimilate to. For some it's Nigella, ooozing feminitiy and a kind of 'naughty domestic goddess in suspenders' type of character. I lack the cleavage or love for food to feel I have a connection with her. Yes I like cooking and baking, but not quite to the extent she takes it.
Then there's Kirsty Alsop and her 'homemade home', I see a bit of myself in her, I like to make things, and do crafty creations, but don't quite share her taste in what i call, 'extreme vintage mumsiness', so at this point, Kirsty and I part ways. There are also the Trinny and Susannas/Gok Wans of this world, who want to style everyone to within an inch of their lives, again, I like clothes but get fed up with hearing the phrase 'bang on trend' so have to decline their offer of fashion aspirations. No, i'm decided, for me, Sarah Beeny kind of fits the bill, I am in reality, nothing like her. But I do find myself thinking that under different circumstance I could be !......... It is entirely nonsensical , but when I watch her mending things, sawing wood and generally getting stuck into a task, I find myself thinking, ' I could do that' or more often than not ' I'd love to do that'.

But then, I look around and see I live in a brand new house which needs no refurbishment, don't quite have the cash to fund such a project, and although I would love to have 4 children swimming in our own private lake, I have one little beauty and a tiny ( but lovely) garden. I don't feel envious of her, I am very content with my circumstances, it's more a sense of living a little dream of mine through someone else on tv.

So, do tell, which one are you..... ?

Are you a alsop wanna be ? a kindred spirit with Kirsty, or like me, a 'bang a nail in the wall beeny' ?!

and I guess if your a male species, then this post is clearly a little dull..... sorry.

Thursday, 24 November 2011

Reflections, thoughts and nostalgia.....

Although it was over a year ago when I was propelled into the world of being someone's mother, I have only just managed to sit back, look through some pictures, video clips, diary entries and reflect. Reflect on the year, the year of immense joy, exhuastion, confusion, happy times, tearful times, and desperately dark times.
Having a baby is a weird and wonderful thing, It has been something I have wanted ever since I can remember. and I feel immensely privileged to have been able to have my little tike. So many people don't who long to, not quite sure why it has happened to me, but I am grateful for it everyday. And I can say, a year on, I love being a Mum, I feel like I was born to do it.

In some ways the shock of having a newborn wasn't as much as i thought it would be, I had braced myself for this almighty change that everyone tells you, 'you can't ever prepare yourself for'. I found it just as i thought it would be i think. I was sleep deprived, but deeply satisfied. I'm not sure weather the years of having CFS had prepared me for coping with life being clouded by fatigue, but I seemed to navigate the first few months kind of ok, and definitely better than I had expected. I was fine with spending lots of time in my pyjamas, it was nice to have a reason for it. For once I felt like I wasn't abnormal feeling exhausted and not getting dressed til midday. That's what all first time Mums do isn't it ? Willow fed lots, the nipples cracked ( the people who say breastfeeding only hurst at first if you'r doing it 'wrong' are liars ), Dad retreated to the spare room in a bid for at least one of us to be sleeping, and the lovely visitors arrived with presents ! - I loved the presents :)
Those first few months are so very special, lots of cuddles, I loved the cuddles. Willow spent many hours asleep lying on my chest, I wasn't in too much of a rush to put her in her own bed, I knew this time would be fleeting, the night feeds, cuddles, and shushing, I wanted to treasure it, even if in hinds sight it probably made me unwell. I'd still do it again.

Willow was never really a screamer, if she was being cuddled, she was very content. So I just went with that, and it worked, contrary to popular opinion, she did learn to sleep in her own bed, did sleep through the night ( although she has lately changed that plan), and her Dad is firmly sleeping in our bed again. The luxury of the first baby is you can do all this, not sure how it'll be if another one arrives, but we'll cross that bridge when we come to it. Willow wanted to be close to me, why wouldn't she? she spent 9 months inside me - how weird is that !!?? really really weird. Why wouldn't she want to sleep with her ear on my chest where she could hear the familiar sound of my heart beat, she knew it's sound far better than I have ever heard it.

But the newborn months don't last long, then came weaning. And around this time, about february, lots of things kind of fell apart a bit. The fatigue became debilitating. Life got really really hard. Friends helped, meals were provided, family stepped in and we got through, just about. At times I really did feel like I was going to go a bit mad, I stopped sleeping and the fear of never being able to look after my child as the fatigue overwhelmed me, became unbearable. I'll never know if it was delayed PND, the stress of moving just before giving birth, or just the plain old difficulty of having a baby, breastfeeding and caring for a child when my energy was already a lot lower than 'normal', I'll never know. But true to the cliche, I do feel stronger having lived through that time, and to some extent have come out the other side. Does it make me scared of ever going through that again, that nasty stage where my body cries out in exhuastion that I have created another person, squeezed it out, fed it and tending to it 24/7, yes it does. It really does.

There have been little holidays, her first paddle in a welsh river, a trip to the beach, baths in the paddling pool in the garden. Lots of fun at Nan's house, and trying to eat tadpoles in the pond and my parents. She has had a good first year I think, so many people who love her and want to make her happy.



The best part about her first year, is that I haven't gone through it alone. I, and she, are very fortunate not just to be 2. There are 3 in our immediate family- the family who live in our house. But there are lots more who contribute in love, time and energy.

I loved her first birthday. It was so much better than I had anticipated. My energy is still very limited, so I had prepared myself for it being a bit of a non event. But the sun shone, and the CFS monster allowed me to have a few lovely celebrations. I created her first birthday cake, tesco made the sponge and the icing, i just put it together and made it look pretty, the fun part i guess ! She did get to wear the lovely dress I wanted her to, she attempted to blow out her candle, and when she went to bed that night. I really did feel a sense of achievement.

Wednesday, 23 November 2011

Precious moments

Willow and her little Pal. these two are so very sweet together, well, maybe the word is more scary than sweet. They both have a preference for hair pulling, and grabbing but always greet each other with a laugh and a giggle. 

More balcony time.....

Tuesday, 22 November 2011

Ten on Tuesday

I like to read the guardian at the weekends, (well usually the magazine bit and the travel and familly suppliments ) Tim dowling writes in the magazine, he is a self confessed moaning kind of guy, I find him more than a little annoying, and am still befuddled as to how he got that job. He rants on and on about his wife and how bad everything they do is/goes. This week I risk sounding a bit like him as I write, Willow is keeping us up at night and to be honest I'm just a bit grumpy today. Don't say I didn't warn you.......

1. I have loads of clear plastic packets with 'spare' buttons in. Are they ever likely to be there when i actually need one, No. They are just cluttering up my bedroom which already resembles a jumble sale. Hummpph. But i can't bear to throw them out, cos sod's law says a button will fall off as soon as I do.

2. Willow now says: Hiya, Daddy, Nanny, Shoes, teddy, Bob ( the builder) Mummy, tent, cake, and no - I am quite proud of her word choices so far. Cake and Shoes are my favourite by far.

3. This is perhaps the most ugly pig I have ever seen. He lives on a little farm not far from where we live. Poor guy, it's not his fault he can't see cos his ears are too big.....But I do think he's lovely in a kind of 'ugly pig' way.

4. My salt dough creations are coming along nicely, they have been painted red and have shiny silver ribbon on, all ready to decorate the house with. I love a bit of homemade festivities.

5. I am trying to decide if it's just that I was in 'post baby haze' last year during the festive season, or has christmas gone up a gear ? It feels a bit like father christmas has taken speed and is whipping everyone into a frenzy a month early.

6.  We had a minor meltdown in our house today, when I said 'no' to Willow's request to watch the clip of herself laughing posted on my facebook page for the 6th time in one day. Who needs cbeebies when you can watch yourself on the silver screen...........ahem, drama queen in the making?

7. A lovely friend of mine came to my rescue today and let me have an hours kip. Once I had resurfaced we finished the afternoon in tesco cafe, having decided there was insufficient food in the house to feed our littlies, we went to the cafe to feed them their tea. Lets just say, it was like the circus arriving in town. But my kitchen looked less like a food fight had taken place in it, so that was good :)

8.  Eight is my favourite number, just thought you might like to know.

9. We have started watching 'I'm a celebrity'. I like to balance my musings on world poverty, politics, and the problems of child explotaion, with the more serious issues of which minor celebrity can eat a kangaroo testicle. I do find it engrossing, and my love for people watching gets fed. What else is there to do at 9pm on a wintery night anyway ??

10. Willow has a fascination with these bunny ears. She likes to wear them on her head or around her neck, if i'm very lucky she lets me wear them too. I love my girl, she's a total loony but just scrumptious.

Friday, 18 November 2011

Monkey, Mostaches and a confession.....

'Movember' got taken a step too far in our house. 

During a recent trip to the safari park, this hairy fella jumped on our bonnet, which is after all why we went to the safari park. Willow was overjoyed as he proceeded to chew off the rubber nozzles which squirt the screen wash out. He knew exactly what he was looking for, I'm convinced that somewhere in Knowsley there is a scrap yard which is sourced by these cheeky monkeys. ( and if there isn't, then maybe a good idea for the next disney pixar ?)   

And with no link whatsoever to the above................
A confession I feel compelled to share.

Ever sponsored a kid for a charity event, and thought, ' how do I know that they are going to give that money to charity and not just spend it' ? Maybe you haven't, but maybe you should.....

When I was about 11, a friend and I tied ourselves together all day to raise money for children in need, or red nose day, i forget which one, anyway, walking round together all day we managed to raise the slightly  unprincely sum of £12, i can remember the figure well.

After a few weeks I took it to the post office to send the money in, that's what you did in those days, no pay by text. When i got to the post office, I decided to spend a bit of it, and then pay it back after. As you can imagine, this never happened and the cash never reached the vulnerable, hungry children in far flung countries, but bought me something, so naff and insignificant, I can't remember what it was.

Yes I know it's bad, and I am even shocked at my behaviour 18 years on........

Children aren't as honest as you think, even those that seem that way. Can you imagine this little cutie, doing such a thing .......?

Only time will tell if my thieving genes have been passed on !

Thursday, 17 November 2011

Beautiful morning

This morning I woke up bleary eyes as usual, but the slightly grey morning which greeted me, slowly gave way to a fresh, bright, crisp autumn one.

It's amazing how it's the small things which can make or break your day with little ones isn't it ? Willow happily sat in her cot while I used the hairdryer ( she HATES the hairdryer), a dry straight fringe always makes my day feel better. Then we hopped in a taxi to take us to a friend's house who looked after Willow for me while I attended a Clinic appointment. We got our usual very friendly taxi driver, always lifts the pushchair in, and is just a generally nice guy, even when I left the house without sufficient funds to pay him. It's nice to be nice.

I then enjoyed something today which I rarely do, I walked the short distance from my friend's to the Surgery - without a pushchair ! :) it felt quite odd, but freeing too. I love walking, It's not something I am able to do a great deal, but I'd always prefer to walk somewhere if I can, rather than drive. I think you miss out on a bit of life if you just go from brick house to metal car, we were made to be in the fresh air, it's good for the soul.

So that's it really, a happy morning, followed by a restful afternoon while Willow was spoilt rotten by her Nan....... ( guess what large, yellow stuffed toy character awaited her as she arrived.......... ! ) They are just brilliant with her, and they are one of life's blessings to us.

On that note, I should get off the sofa and go round and get her and the large garish addition to her toy collection.

Tuesday, 15 November 2011

Ten on Tuesday

definitely not the most inspired entry i've ever written, but here it is .........

1. Willow is now walking, bye bye baby, hello toddler. This is clearly not a photo of her walking but is very cute anyway, so thought i'd share.

2. Having finally bought some bulbs for the garden, i guess they need emerging into the soil if there is any hope of any spring colour in our garden next year. 

3. As my little tot is now tottering, i think a trip to clarks is on the horizon. I love shoes, and am going to revel in picking her first pair. I don't think it'll be long until she chooses her own, so i am going to enjoy every minute of it while it lasts.

4. Like most people, I am a bit sick of hearing about the euro crisis, and wonder if China would like to buy my debt too ? At the moment it's firmly in the paws of Mr Branson and I would happily get rid of it altogether....

5. I've been watching the 'Frozen Planet', the penguins are just hilarious. It's definitely worth a watch. 

6. The cold is beginning to set in, I am really not a fan of wearing socks, but have resided myself to the fact that, yes is November and yes i do have cold ankles. 

7. My lovely other half just had a birthday, and is now the proud owner of an iphone 4S. 'Siri' has now taken my place in his life and reminds him about all the things he needs to remember . Feeling slightly pushed out :-/

8. Willow has done the thing that every slightly 'arty' mother dreads. She likes large, colourful, tacky, teddies. I am happy with small cuddly disney characters, But do we really need a huge winnie the pooh in our house ? really ? I saw a very lovely soft cute looking bunny in the 'white company' catalogue, i'm sure that is the better choice, and would definitely not clash with any chosen colour schemes in our house. 

9. At some point soon I am going to have to get to the Library to return the books we borrowed a looooooong time ago. I think i was wearing flipflops at the time and the copy of 'nigella's christmas' certainly looked out of place on our bookshelf, That's the trouble with libraries you have to take things back. 

10. I introduced Willow to MC Hammer this morning, she wasn't impressed. When i work out how to put youtube clips on here,  you may get to listen !