OMG snow!

We awoke this morning to a little bit of snow. Not enough to keep Andy home from work, enough to need to clear the car, not enough to make a snowman, enough to make a small boy very excited and enough to make me terrified of slipping over and landing on my bump. Or my toddler. Which is worse? Probably landing on the bump, TTB is fairly hardy.

We made our way cautiously/stomped and slipped happily to playgroup talking about all the snowy things and then I had a blissful hour with a friend in Caffe Nero drinking hot chocolate and eating delicious things. After that I was too early for playgroup collection but without really enough time to go home and come back again so I found a bench in the little shopping centre and added a few rows to my crochet. I had a mad crazy nesting type urge to make blankets for all my expectant friends, before making one for my baby. I’ll let you know how I get on, probably at the end of the month. Ooh the suspense!

In January 2013 we had loads and loads of snow, I had already decided to travel down to my mum’s by train that day and it took us so long to get to the station with the pram. It was so deep! But this is the first time TTB has really experienced snow himself, he was really excited seeing it from the car just after Christmas but nothing compared to how he was today. He was really disappointed actually when we walked home that it had mostly melted. We had a chat about that and he seemed to accept that melting is what happens when the sun shines on the snow. It didn’t stop him standing in every little bit he could find though but I’m happy to indulge him in things like that.

A New Year

Last year I had my diary and a couple of calenders out on the table on New Year’s Eve and I filled in all my important dates, and all the birthdays I needed to remember. Things like that. This year I do have a calendar but it’s still in the wrapping with the magazine it came free with! This year feels much more like a continuation rather than a new start – does that make sense? I think it’s because I put all my baby thoughts and planning on hold until after Christmas, because we were so busy with the lounge, and now it is January it’s really not very long until our baby will be here.

Last year I started doing Project Life and I LOVE the two albums of photos I’ve made from it. I chose to do it purely as a photo album (scrapbooking and papercrafts aren’t my thing really) and it felt so good to actually DO something with all my photos. When I became pregnant, something had to give and Project Life was that thing and I’ve been playing catch up ever since. It’s ok, my method now is just to do everything as a 6×4 photo and bung it all in the album and call it done. I’ve got 6 weeks of photos left to sort and order and then that will be done enough for my liking. I’m going to do it again this year but in an even lazier way (as soon as I figure out what that way is.) Getting this 2014 album finished is my main crafty focus at the moment. A couple of friends are doing “one thing every day” and at the moment ┬ásorting photos is my “one thing”.

This year, I’ve been watching what other people are aiming to do, or committing to do, with their year. What do I want out of 2015? Well, I’d really just like to cope! It’s only 9 weeks until baby is due, and that’s going to be a BIG change for all of us and I’d quite like to just cope well and not end up in the dark place in my head that I did after TTB was born.

I would tentatively like to continue using my dSLR more and getting more confident with manual settings. I used it today for the first time in a while (89 photos of TTB, three of the church clock …) and it’s very satisfying to do so. Someday I’d like another lens for it. I’ll be 30 in 2016, perhaps I could justify one then?

Coping, using my dSLR more and continuing to do Project Life in any way that I can … that seems to be quite enough to commit to really. Lastly I would like to continue my battle against clutter in our house. I’ve made huge progress lately, spurred on by my very nesty feelings right now. I emptied and bleached two kitchen cupboards at the weekend, and washed up and sorted everything in them. I like to go and look at them occasionally since they are the only part of my house that has “a place for everything and everything in it’s place”! I’ve also taken about ten carrier bags of things to the charity shops and I’ve really enjoyed purging all of the things we don’t need.

We’ve unpacked the 20 or so boxes that were still packed from when we left Leeds in 2009. I’m determined not to be a hoarder and its felt very liberating to say “nope, don’t need or want that” about lots of things. I mean, if it’s been packed for 5 years do I really need it? No. Farewell, university work!

I’m determined to work hard now and make the house nice and sorted for when the baby arrives. I’d like to do it now so that I can concentrate on enjoying my last weeks of it being just TTB, and get him used to having the cot up in his bedroom for the baby, and things like that. We moved some furniture around at the weekend, and I’ve ordered a few new babygros and a changing mat. I’ve bought some mini shampoo for my hospital bag. I will be ready and organised this time! I need a new cot mattress, another baby monitor, and I’d like a new sling (I’ve heard good things about the Connecta but all the pretty fabric ones are out of stock) and I’d love a fold up pushchair to increase my child transport options (I’m trying to save up for/justify the cost of this one). But other than that … I think I’m doing ok. It’s mind boggling how quickly this pregnancy is going. To begin with I was unsure how I could ever love another child as much as I love TTB but with every wriggle and jiggle and kick this little one makes I just know that I will. It’s going to be hard work … but so worth it. I’m actually getting quite excited to meet him/her now! It won’t be long.

The other day I started to feel a bit sad that I’ve not made any blankets for this baby yet. Then I opened a drawer and found 6 baby blankets, and I looked around TTB’s room at all of the blankets in there. Plenty of blankets. Loads. I’ll make one when there is time but until then … yes, I think we’ll be ok for blankets!

 

Hello

Hello and Happy New Year! Sorry for leaving it a whole month without posting, things became very busy and something had to give. Actually a lot of things had to give, namely blogging, housework, crafting, sleeping, thinking … you get the picture. But, everyone was fed, everyone was clean, everyone survived and most importantly we managed to get the living room finished for Christmas. Yay! I don’t have loads of photos to show you yet because it’s been Christmas and now we’re sorting out our huge backlog of boxes (they’ve been packed since 2009!) of books etc that have been in the corner of TTB’s room for a long time. We’re getting there. In the meantime, here’s a photo of it all Christmassed up. It’s hugely thrilling to have this room done and we’ve been SO enjoying using it – finally! I’m so proud of Andy for working so hard on it and doing such a good job.

Here’s a few before and during photos …

It’s been a lot of awful, dirty, dusty work. I hadn’t looked at those photos until the other day and it made me feel like crying remembering just how dusty and hideous it was taking all the plaster off. Still, it’s done now! (Just the rest of the house to go …)

In amongst all of the work we did (and trust me, every spare minute of November and December was spent working on it!) I did manage to do some festive things. Unfortunately our cooker never materialised because Tesco and Indesit are lying liars who lie. Andy bought us a little mini cooker (I know a lot of you suggested this at the start) and that’s been nice to have, I’m still getting to grips with it because of how shallow it is, the food is always close to the elements and it often burns the top of things if you use the top element or makes the bottom of things very tough if you just use the bottom element. HOWEVER, baking cakes and biscuits for the first time in a year was super and I felt all giddy with excitement.

My mother in law knitted an advent calender for TTB, what a huge amount of work went into that! Look at all those little pieces to put inside it. He’s loved it. Now I’m just trying to work out where to keep it for the rest of the year as it’s quite big. We’ve done lots of playdough, written Christmas cards and I treated TTB to Christmas pyjamas – I’m quite jealous they don’t come in my size!

Christmas Eve was lovely – I was able to spend a lot of it baking. It didn’t yield much because you can only do tiny batches in the mini oven but it was fun nonetheless and I was happy to be able to make some puff pastry mince pies like I did on Christmas Eve in 2012. It’s daft but I’d been really sad about not being able to make them, what with having no oven and all, so I’m pleased it all worked out. In the evening we left one of the mince pies for Father Christmas, along with a drink (TTB assured me that Father Christmas drinks “purple squash” aka apple and blackcurrant – who am I to argue?) and a carrot for the reindeer. It’s both wonderful and surreal to be the parent in this situation rather than the child. Being the eldest of 4 meant I was able to play along with this for a lot longer than if I’d been the youngest! I think TTB had forgotten about having left the tray out when it came to morning though, but he was delighted to find new matchbox cars and brio trains in his stocking. He loved opening presents too, well, he was very lovely about it actually and was more concerned with handing them all out and making sure that people opened them rather than the contents. Then later on he was a bit taken aback to find a new box of duplo and books and things on the floor!

The day after Boxing Day we travelled down to see my family. I was so looking forward to seeing them! We’d planned to visit before Christmas but had to postpone it what with getting the living room finished. Unfortunately it took us five and a half hours instead of three hours to get there, gah! Snow in the Midlands and thousands of other people travelling were not a good combination. I don’t ever want to travel at Christmas again! I loved seeing my family though and wish the visit had been longer. I had planned to go down again in the next half term holiday – until I realised just how close that is to my due date. I keep forgetting how pregnant I am – it explains why I feel so tired at least. I have started doing some planning and cleaning now which feels good, somewhat necessary since I’m 30 weeks already. Goodness me. 2015 is going to be a busy year I think.

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