29 October 2010

Catch up time!

So, well, the main obvious thing is - no internet for ten days.  No phone either.  Thankyou Virgin.  ;)  Yees, it was an interesting week!  The internet break turned out not to be as terrible as I was expecting, and the interesting power cuts (Thankyou Eon digging up my street!) just added to the fun.  The thing about that is, the fire alarm is wired into the mains.  So it makes a little distress beep every few seconds to tell me that it's disconnected.  At not-quite-regular intervals.  I went out and told the workmen off the first time it all cut out, but otherwise just went quietly crazy.  At least it wasn't on the bitterly cold days. 

Oh yes, first frosts this week!  Think it killed my sweetcorn.  *sigh*

 Little people playing...

Hmm, let's see.  In other news, we have been to the space centre.  

Morgan ran back to look at something as we were trying to leave and we ended up with the entire security team out searching for her and me posted on the main doors "just in case".  After nearly half an hour she was found in a world of her own, she had walked all the way back up to a rocket display she had liked.  She told me later, "I wanted the rockets, but then I couldn't find the stairs again!"  The only time I have ever EVER felt that scared was sitting holding Rowan's hand while she was unconcious fighting that first infection.  I really thought I had lost her.  I'm crying writing this and I don't know entirely which baby I'm crying for.
On the subject of Rowan...  She fell of the toilet last weekend and somehow caught her eye on the cabinet.  Blood everywhere, eyelid cut open, but after four days she was so well healed that the stitches were off.  All back to normal now, but a seriously scary injury.  She is such a pickle!  She is totally refusing to use nappies, so I'm really glad it doesn't seem to have scared her off using the toilet!
Irresistable Connor Cuteness!  And a Roo too.  This is the day of the apple festival.  Park days are the best!

I'm looking through so many pictures here, and can't begin to decide what else is important.  There has been a lot of laughter and play and learning this week.  Lots of time with friends, and unexpected blessings (like being bought a new fridge-freezer by Martin's family, and Martin's pay raise - discovered only by trying to work out why he was overpaid)!

Ah, cake balls.  Cake balls are important.  And dangerous.  This was my first attempt.  They lasted less than an hour.  That is my warning to you.  Cake balls are dangerous.  Nuff said.  ;)

Here is a tired me.  Always tired.  But generally happy at the moment.  :)
Today I'm going to go round town searching all the charity shops for things that actually fit me.  Emma is coming to, to keep me on task primarily and stop me spending all the spare money on clothes for children who already have lots.  I realised last week that if I look honestly at my wardrobe, there are about six things that fit me AND I like.  About another ten that I like but don't fit, and another ten that fit but I don't like!  I actually have NO trousers.  Not one single pair.  My most recent pair of jeans died, and I am trouserless.  Well we're going to have to sort that out today at least, because the dress and the skirt in rotation are just NOT warm enough for this weather.
I restrung Roo's amber teething beads (this is their fourth incarnation after two babies have snapped two clasps and tugged too much on the tough elastic version).  And I've been knitting and crocheting lots of Christmas presents (and the cowls the babies are wearing in various pictures).
Three girls strolling down our street.  Ah they are just perfect.

17 October 2010

With Big Love

I don't do big things. I do small things with big love.
[Mother Theresa]

These Inexpert Portraits

I am feeling a little inadequate at the moment about my blogging, which I suppose is a symptom of just feeling inadequate fairly often in many ways for no particular reason.  Particularly, I look at beautiful blogs by amazing artists, and think, well, basically all I have is my little diary with accompanying random opinions and amateur family photography...  Hampered always by a series of inexpensive cameras with good resolution but no useful added features.  But that's making excuses, since I am unwilling to invest the time in learning to use a good camera anyway right now.

I do just love to take pictures.  I love to see the small details, and try to catch them.  And I love love love these little subjects chattering and running and dancing through my life.  I have never doubted that I can write, not serious literature, but real everyday language in the English that I love but terribly abuse in lazy ways.  And I don't ever *seriously* consider why I'm blogging or who I'm writing for, because I have never set out to attract readers or speak to a wider audience apart from the simple connections - real friendships - from reaching out to other mamas drawn to a more earth-friendly child-friendly life.  I am writing, primarily, for me.  I am taking pictures, primarily, for me.  I'm making art work and crafting, because it brings pleasure to me and to those I am making for, not because I have a big message about the place of art in our lives - and I'm writing about parenting because it interests me and connects me to other people and their lives and opinions, not because I have any idea of setting myself up as an expert.

Other people do everything I do, but better.  The only thing I do - here or anywhere - that nobody else can do, is to be me.  So these portraits of every day life, of idealism and failure and chaos and mess...  These are what I put out into the world.  Not to change the world, or make a name for myself, or anything more than to share.  To be here, as myself, find my place in a community of parents, and learn what I can from every moment.

16 October 2010

My Baby

She has these fuzzy sweet little curls and those skinny toddler shoulders with the pot belly.
 And the teeth, oh the teeth!  All in the wrong order, random little molars at the back, and two at the front here so tiny and white and sharp making her grin look even more ridiculously edible.
Snuggles, "mink", "no, dis mink" and "huggle" and the talking and all the things she will learn to say properly so very soon.  I will miss these baby words when they are gone, and treasure them now.  "Shoosh" (shoes) is a favorite of mine.

Ack she is loveliness itself.

So very patient with big sisters wanting to play with her too, willing to be their baby at a moment's notice.

 "Go to sleep now baby!"  "OK!"  Alright, maybe you don't quite fit in the dolly crib!

Not that it stops her climbing in all KINDS of places, voluntarily, for mamas camera to snap up quickly before this phase, too, passes.  Stay, oh stay, please don't grow so very fast little one!

15 October 2010


We are remembering.  This is the only one of my missing babies' due dates that I know, because that first year irony of a due date with empty arms was eased by knowing that many millions were lighting candles that night, in a wave of light spanning the globe.  The end of Baby Loss Awareness week, my sweet Lael's due date, we hold in our prayers the families whose babies went on ahead, and once more we remember.

There are moments when it all seems just as real, where the memories of labouring that night and knowing that it was the end just overwhelm me.  There are also so many times when I briefly forget, and feel fresh guilt for the forgetting.  Grief is a complex thing, and no two people are quite alike, no two losses equivalent to the people experiencing them.

If you know someone who is grieving right now, I direct you to this wonderful resource (thankyou to the person who pointed me towards it today).  How to Help your Grieving Friend

If you, too, have personal experience of losing a child - either your own or someone close to you - I am sending you so much love as I type this.  I know who some of you are, and I promise you, as I light our candles I had you specifically in mind.  The list of names in my heart is too long to begin to type out.

And lastly, if you are up to the very raw reading, Lael's story especially as requested by one friend who has asked for the links (*warning - graphic*).  Please, if you too are feeling fresh pain tonight, don't take mine away with you too, but feel free to share your story here or anywhere.  There is a time to grieve, and a time to be comforted, and it's OK to cycle wildly between the two sometimes.  (hugs)

Lael's Loss 1 - 2 - 3 - 4 - 5 - 6 - 7 - 8

14 October 2010

Flying Lessons

We made kites this week.  We've been enjoying the Gerda Muller book, Autumn,  and one of the things the girls most wanted to leap right off and do was fly a kite.  We had one once, a long time ago, and when I tried to get it out it seemed to have got a bit mouldy, and had a snail on it, and I sighed a little sigh, relocated the snail, and tried to scrub the kite clean - to no avail, so in the bin it went.  Thankfully this timely find provided us with a simple-enough alternative! 

The thing with kites is, I've never managed to make one that will fly.  Never.  And a lot of directions are just too much for me to attempt with three little ones.  If it was just me and Jenna, perhaps...  But to the park we go!

 Even this simple offering, I'm afraid, did not so much "fly" as "get enthusiastically pulled along behind" a series of happy windswept children.

 The children also decorate each other with flowers.  Ellie isn't terribly impressed.

Then off the to post office, via the endless building works, which of course we have to stop by and poke the piles of soil and jump on the heavy duty covers along the holes in the path, and talk to the builders about why they are digging holes and how many tiles they think are on the roof and what the pipe is for.  Etc.  :)

"We're WILD!" calls Jenna to the others.

Happy little wild things on a brisk autumnal day.  Notice the first pairs of gloves of the season?  Last year I could swear we owned several pairs, but over the summer they must have been eaten by the sock monster.  Ah well, new red and stripy gloves to keep those hands warm!