Bits and Bobs - August 2017

It's September! While I love the autumn, I normally want to hang on to summer for the longer days and (bit of) warmth in the air. But this year I am so happy to see September. The summer was tough this year. The weather was very changeable – there were heavy showers most days, at least as far as I remember – and Daniel’s sleep patterns weren’t great which coupled with pregnancy tiredness and insomnia has meant I’ve been exhausted.

Throw in a hospital stay for my husband in August and I am done in. September brings huge spiders and colder mornings, but the leaves on the trees start turning colour and routine, ah, routine – how welcome this year! And I’m actually loving getting my boots on again. Maybe because this winter has the promise of good things in its depths (baby is due late January, in that most depressing of weeks apparently!) that I’m actually looking forward to the dark evenings.

So, what have we been up to this month? Actually, lots of good memories, some hospital appointments, blood tests, meals with siblings and family trips. We do love a good Saturday morning train trip!

Reading

This piece by local blogger and post-natal depression campaigner Lindsay Robinson is fab. It can be tough being at home full time, especially after working your whole life. I’ve certainly felt the need to justify the decisions we’ve made and reasons for me being at home and giving up my career. And yet I believe there is real value in women staying at home. And that fulfillment and valuable contributions to society can be made by women who don’t have a specific job title.

As an aside, I did write down “domestic goddess” on my booking in form for this pregnancy against “Occupation”. More than a little tongue in cheek as anyone who has seen my house will know! But what else do you write for those forms? Anyone any ideas?

Learning

Daniel had two summer scheme weeks in August. The first was a private one we paid for at a specialist SEN provider. The second was the local children’s disability team (who provide tailored sessions in school for Daniel’s teacher, teaching assistant and us as a family in relation to speech, OT and physio). They did some great work outlining strategies that work well with Daniel, his strengths and weaknesses etc and included these in transition documents for me to pass on to his new teacher.

So what insightful thing did I learn? That my housekeeping is a complete disaster. I put the transition documents somewhere and have spent the last three or four days (in the stolen moments) trying to find them. I mean, one is a laminated A4 page, it can’t be that hard to locate, but locate it I can’t.

I struggle so much with organising a home, particularly paperwork and it’s hard not to beat myself up about such a poor system that I lose important things in a matter of weeks. The only paperwork I'm on top of is hospital appointments, I have a file and a diary and it works. Everything else. Meh.

Watching

I finally got to watch Hidden Figures. I was really keen to see it in the cinema, but of course it didn’t happen (Colin and I have only been a handful of times in a ten year relationship!). Then Colin got a free movie offer through Sky so I asked for this! We both really enjoyed it. It’s the first film I’ve watched in years that I didn’t have to get him to pause constantly. I have such a short attention span (thanks ADHD) and don’t enjoy high drama movies. This was just the perfect pace and storytelling for my liking and packed full of wonderful female role models.

Homemaking

Well this month I managed to pack away winter coats and a few dresses that won’t fit when I’m pregnant / breastfeeding into a vacuum bag. (this is thrilling blog content I know…) And Colin helped clear the piles of kids clothes everywhere by sorting the boys’ stuff into piles – Rory keep, Daniel keep, too small, too big and get rid of. I found a few items in the get rid pile very tough but you know, you can’t hold on to all of it forever. And we have so much stuff even if baby three is another boy.

Next challenge is for me to get the study cleared. It’s a TIP!

At least I can cook and do proper homemaking things like make jam, eh? We all have our skills! 

Parenting

Both boys have come out with some classics this last month. It’s so much fun starting to have lots of funny anecdotes – things they’ve said, games they play. It’s amazing how the boys help each other in that way. Rory’s speech has exploded recently and his more complex use of grammar is really helping Daniel.

For us, having more children was something that took a lot of consideration. Did we continue to have Daniel as an only child allowing us to focus on him, do lots of therapy (we had a very detailed plan that I spent, honestly, an hour or two a day delivering) or give him a sibling or two to play with.

Daniel’s therapy plan has suffered since we had Rory. Rory was a baby that fed lots, cried lots and was generally quite demanding. And as a toddler he is FULL ON. I don’t manage to do anywhere near as much as I used to. It’s very frustrating. But then I reflect on how Daniel’s social skills, speech and play skills have developed having a sibling. And watch how they kiss each other goodnight each night. And then I know that a sibling was the right choice for us. Let’s hope sibling 3 fits in as well!

Faith

What a month for my faith. Friends have seen answered prayers for sickly babies, others awful news and a long road ahead of them. So many prayers to pray and sometimes the words very hard to find. I just keep reminding myself that God’s heart breaks with ours. All we can do is turn to Him in the midst of hard times and lean on Him for strength.

God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in times of trouble…. God is within her, she will not fall” Psalm 46 v 1 and 5.