Trying to wind down

We finished our 12 week Harvest Time curriculum the week before last. The end came at just the perfect time as we’ve all reached a point where I think we are ready for a break. In all honesty, we’ve been winding down for the last few weeks and during December we’ve done a lot less structured work at the table than in the months previously. But such is the way with the ebb and flow of life and I’m grateful that we can respond to how we’re feeling without any heavy expectations or guilt over what wasn’t achieved that perhaps could have been. With that in mind, when I found out Dan had to be away for four nights this week just gone I asked Ma if I could spend a couple of nights at theirs in Dartmouth and was very grateful when she said yes!

So a lovely few days were spent at their house, doing puzzles, going to playgroup, making Christmas gingerbread and reading books. This was exactly what we needed especially as both the kids were recovering from colds and I’ve been starting to feel very weary lately. I especially enjoyed the warm log fire in the evenings and being looked after a bit as Mum, Dad and Julia entertained the kids!
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Unfortunately, my sense of calm was short lived as I ended up spending 4 hours at the labour ward on Thursday. I woke in the morning feeling pretty rough and then my bump became rock hard and painful all over whilst I was ridiculously breathless. I started to experience what felt like contractions and upon calling, was asked to go into the labour ward to be checked out. Long story short, all tests and checks seemed to indicate that baby was fine and that I wasn’t going into labour although they weren’t sure what had caused the symptoms. I got sent home with strict instructions to go back if necessary and to get as much rest as possible. It was a bit of an unsettling afternoon and I’ve been ultra alert to the baby moving and how my bump is feeling since then as I swear neither of the others were quite this active or caused me so much discomfort!

Mostly though, I was and am still so grateful to be living in Topsham and to have such good friends just around the corner. The lovely Fabrianne came and looked after the kids immediately and Laurie was a star and accompanied me to the hospital, keeping me calm and distracted from my thoughts! I kept thinking how much harder the afternoon would have been if we were still living in the middle of nowhere at the Barn.

As mentioned, my final advice was to rest. I chuckled slightly at this as we were in the midst of getting ready for Sophia’s 5th birthday party when my brief trip to the hospital happened. I cut a few corners but did end up baking late into the night on both Thursday and Friday evening. I think it was all worth it though as yesterday we successfully threw a lovely chef themed fifth birthday party at a hall down the road from us for our gorgeous girl. We had our hands full with 18 kids (and 2 babies!) but our friends were amazing at pitching in to help (especially Fab again!) and I think a good time was had by all.

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Now that the party is over, I am looking forward to relaxing, taking it easy and gently enjoy the rest of advent. We’re off to the Pennywell Nativity on Wednesday for Sophia’s actual birthday then to Surrey for a long weekend celebrating Christmas with Dan’s parents before heading home to have Christmas with the ever lovely Jo, Matt and their girls (cheese, boardgames and lots of good, lazy company awaits)!

I’ve also made a decision regarding our home education schedule that should make life a little easier in the run up to the arrival of bump (will share in another post) and generally am feeling very relaxed, very happy and very festive! I hope any readers out there are feeling similarly chilled and looking forward to Christmas, however you celebrate it. I’m sure I’ll post again before Christmas but just in case I don’t, a very Merry Christmas to you all from the Durdin clan in Topsham!
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