30 April 2011

Another little update assortment

I just can't hate these happy little weeds.
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This trip to the park was a really welcome morning out of the house, but wow I was so tired afterwards and the park usually doesn't feel that far.
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The last remaining building on this plot. So sad to see all this history coming down.
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My garden is growing!
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Spring crochet (a lace toddler vest).
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Being little is so exhausting!
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29 April 2011

Spring Celebrations

Baby-ness at Attenborough. Eep!
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Rowan, age 1.
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And Rowan, age 2!
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This blur being carried carefully by my husband is sugar-free organic strawberry cake with insect decorations for an insect-obsessed toddler!
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Bunny biscuits (made by the girls and their friends). Pink icing apparently entirely necessary. Ultimate thanks to Jo for facilitating a nap for me, and somehow keeping EIGHT children quiet for the occasion.
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A family walk with Grandad and Aunty Alison.
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Yes, I am aware I promised Pesach pictures too, but alas, they are even worse than Rowan's wobbly birthday pictures, and there is only one which has come out well. I will spare you it, since it is a child-taken picture of the top of poor hubby's head! *sigh*

Well, there have been *some* smiles around here. :)

28 April 2011


This post is taking me forever to write, in short doses, with regular trips outside to the garden with mint tea in hand. Everything is taking forever, every little five minute job looms large and requires breaks, drinks, something to eat. I'm drinking a lot of mint tea. It helps. As does eating regular small snacks.

I have this crazy pregnant/sick love/hate relationship with food. Sometimes, everything sounds good - and I literally am a liability in the supermarket (why on earth would I start buying frozen fried reformed chicken and tinned asparagus soup? Utterly unappealing food makes me hungry!) but at the same time even the thought of food preparation makes me ill. Maybe that's why strange things in packets attract me?

I have been kosher for months, yet had a sudden craving for sausages. I really wish I'd had the self control to ignore the craving, because they proved idigestible. Lesson learned. If it isn't food when I'm well, it won't help when I'm not well.

I'm eating a lot of bean salads, rice (and other things that don't smell funny while cooking), and soup (because it's so quick, and not too horrible if I can't keep it down).

Frozen lemonade chips. Sucky sweets. Less healthful, but hey they help control the nausea a little which in turn is keeping dehydration at bay.

See - obsessed with food.

I have had a few dispairing moments of "why me?" and "why can't I cope like any normal person can?" I totally expected the hyperemesis to return, yet I had this strange idea that because our lives were so much *easier* at the moment, me being ill would be more manageable.

Why why why did I want this? The baby at the end of it all feels a long way off, and honestly it's nearly impossible to relate being SO SICK with something joyful and miraculous. I'm so blessed, so blessed, to carry this baby. But how, day to day, can it feel like a blessing? :(

I feel asleep yesterday morning, sat down for a while and drifted off. I was woken by water pouring through the ceiling. Yup, Rowan let herself upstairs and flooded the house out. Everything is still damp. I can just about make light of it now - but the truth is, with me *this* knocked out, it could have been much worse than a flood. She could have drowned herself. Anything.

I'm trying not to torture myself with the possibilities. Anyhow, I'm not doing that again, there are people around for the next few weeks picking up the slack and checking in on us just in case.

We had plans for this year. But biggest of all, "another baby?" the question, would we, were we ready, this year, next year? So so quickly all the other plans are set aside, as life for me takes a different, slower, tack. Seems like when my body is growing a baby, it needs me to not pencil in too much else. Ah well. More tea, I guess, more sitting in the sun.

And maybe some crochet.

19 April 2011

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I'd like to be here. I have lots to share, pictures of a lovely weekend away (helping to open a community Apiary in London, and involved in some minor civil disobedience at the Tate), oh and birthdaying still to show you (Rowan had a fabulous day) and Pesach and goodness so much living.

Sickness hit. I'm hiding out, sleeping a lot, and avoiding screen time because it makes everything worse for me. Ugh. Well, eight weeks sickness free was pretty amazing! I'll be back on and off, when I can. I miss you all!

14 April 2011


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Oh my girl, what a year it has been. How quickly you have blossomed from babyhood to fully a toddler and barely even that any more. You are so fully yourself, different to each of those blessed to make up your family, and yet you belong. I am honoured by your generosity and undone by your spirit and astounded by your wisdom. A million million Birthday wishes to you.

Be true, be bright - you cannot be too intense, my love for you is big enough. You are loved as you are!

Your smile, nose wrinkled, eyes dancing, golden curls flying, face alight; you are a glowing flame, or the light caught in a prism, or air itself smelling of Summer. What you are, I will never fully grasp. Rainbow daughter, you amaze me.

13 April 2011

More Everyday Things

We have been in the garden a lot again (this may be one of the most commonly repeated phrases in my random updates). Digging, planting, enjoying the sun, ignoring the cold, making sculptures out of junk, spreadng the remaining sand from last year all over the grass, picking dandylions, and creating wonderful mayhem. In my case replace sand, dandylions, and mayhem with knitting, reading, and drinking actual hot cups of tea while the children occupy themselves. :)

Jenna has spent a lot of time sailing her new boat - made with help from Chris on Sunday.
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We made it to town and back to do jobs and pick up birthday necessities. I left the house with three girls, sunhats, cardigans, assorted other acoutrements, and a teddy bear in a toy buggy. And I returned home with everything and everyone I left with, amazingly, and even more incredible, with everything from my list! Here are the children, on the long walk in. My children have Rules about stopping to look at diggers. :)
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What else? We have had friends round a couple of times, including the sweet little boy from next door who talks about nothing but Ben10. *hehe* We have made invisible ink. Made and eaten an excessive amount of ice lollies. And finished Rowan's birthday presents.

Getting ready for another walk. The very ordinary things have a kind of glow to them right now. I am overflowing with thankfulness.
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Here's an in-progress of mine. I'm making a large table protector with the string from my veg boxes. As you can see, I've been working on this for a while (and we eat a lot of fruit and veg)!
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And a play picture - made even more irresistable by sweet Jenna wearing one of Rowan's skirts! That child! *grin*
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12 April 2011

Three Years Past

Has it really been so very long? The memories are so fresh and *real*. Like a heavy rock that my experience of motherhood has swirled and flowed around. The weight no longer crushes me but *oh* there is still that little blank spot felt like the gap where a tooth should be, like a blind spot in my peripheral vision. How this day creeps up on me!

Today, there is no pain in grieving. A heart's longing to see my baby again some day. A surprising joy at all the gifts that little soul brought us. A certainty of hope.

(Lael's full story - my unassisted home miscarriage - is at the bottom of this post.)

9 April 2011

Weekending Sunshine

Friday was such a productive great sunny garden day. I dug over all the veg beds again and got a load of stuff planted out. The children helped by digging up half of what I planted...
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And I spent some time indoors to, sorting the Laundy Pile of Doom and thinking that we still have Way Too Much Stuff...
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Then today, we packed a picnic, and took ourselves to the park with Chris, Em, and Connor. :)
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Rowan was not keen on sharing the frisbee...
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And there was also paddling - in the ICE cold brook that I paddled in as a child. :) Summer joys, in Spring. :)
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I don't think I could say one single thing that would add to these pictures, or the pleasure of today. So I won't even try it. :)
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8 April 2011

Girl Clothes

"Want-er-sirt on!"
You want a t-shirt on?
"Yeah. Noo. Sirt."
Erm... Shoes?
"No. Want a SIRT on. Nice a WARM. SLEEP sirt. Want a gee-raff one."
Ohh, you want a SUIT. You want the giraffe sleepsuit! Let's go find it then shall we? [We get two steps into her room before she spots the dragon dungarees instead.]
"Want a DRAGON one. Want a DRAGON sirt! My FAV-rit." *beam*
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That's my girl!

And that, ladies and gentlemen, is why we're not going to be terribly short of "boy clothes" if Minnow turns out not to be another female child...

7 April 2011


There is apple blossom on the tree in our garden. The sun has been glorious this week, and we've been in and out of the messy garden. I haven't quite managed to start planting food crops yet though!
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Oh goodness, toddler deliciousness. She recieved a parcel of fabulous clothes yesterday morning from Claire and couldn't wait to try them on. She did a little fashion show for her sisters, so cute! Here she is wearing the coat she just can't be persuaded to take off.
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The willow tree is going crazy, so we made some hoops and crowns, and turned the biggest hoop into a Spring mobile. :)
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And after organising the hall (again) a couple of days ago, I wanted to put up some little hooks they can all reach with a coat or cardi, to help us get ready more easily when we head out. I'm pretty pleased with this. :)
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I caught Jenna helping her sister climb over the fence into next door's garden. We had Words. When I told the girls that even asides from needing to stay somewhere I KNOW they are safe, they may have frightened the lady next door if she's in the house on her own, Jenna wanted to write her a letter. She writes *fast* now! (So sweet and thoughtful too.)
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And here's a teeny who just woke up from a little nap, being adored by her big sisters. They have recently been much more affectionate with each other again, I guess the outdoor time is *really* helping with the fighting. Today Jenna announced that when the baby is born and gets bigger, all four of them will share a bedroom so that they can cuddle if the little ones wake up at night. hehe
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When I was uploading pictures yesterday I found these, Jenna had apparently taken them, um one day this week. They still change clothes a few times a day, it's hard to keep track (any ideas for persuading them to keep the first set of clothes on?)!
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This Springtime, three, next Springtime, four!
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