I am writing this and it is, at a glance, 21:23. And I should probably be relaxing, as it’s Sunday evening and that’s the rules, but I’ve been sat at our desk in the lounge for a good hour, just editing. Editing videos. Editing photographs.
And I’ve really enjoyed it.
I don’t think I’ll ever find a hobby that I adore as much as this, even singing (though I’m hoping to do that later this year).
We started the weekend with a bit of a quest if I’m honest, after admiring the Sweet Williams above. They are so cheap and yet they are absolutely gorgeous. I always said that I would have a wedding bouquet of Sweet Williams and Peonies should I ever get married. And yes, while I won’t be tying the knot, they still remain one of my favourite flowers. No prizes for guessing why.
Anyway, I digress.
I haven’t driven much since I passed my driving test years ago. That’s mainly due to the fact that it took me seven tries to pass – I still remember sobbing down the phone to my dad when I finally passed.
I have this huge fear of killing someone (I think I’m ridiculous, so it’s okay if you do too), and I’ve been insured on our family car for over a year and Saturday was the first time I actually drove it.
Mark was stripping wallpaper in our bedroom, a task that really needs tackling, and I had to visit the post office and do a food shop, as we’d not bought any food since Venice.
So I bit the bullet, and Bill and I survived. It might sound daft, but I was so proud of myself. And now I feel like I have the freedom to go out and about, just me, or just me and Bill, and I no longer have to drag my handsome chauffeur with me.
I really enjoyed doing a food shop at my own pace with Bill’s help. I was really chuffed with what I bought and it was nice to mooch around, rather than shop online, as I could weigh-up my options and think on my feet.
Plus, Bill was an angel and came back with a fair few treats.
I don’t know why I snapped a photo of my Waitrose vouchers. But they are all cat food offers and that really excited me – because I’m a loser.
As for Bill’s treats, I bought him three new books, which he loves, and a new Jurassic Park dinosaur. I believe it’s an Ankylosaurus. Which he can pronounce, and bizarrely remembers!
Reading books with Bill is one of my favourite things to do as a parent. My parents will tell you that I’m a book-worm, and I always have been, and this seems to be rubbing off on my son, as he gets at least two books read to him a day, and more if we can fit them in. I love rediscovering books from my childhood with him, or falling in love with new ones.
After a busy morning, Mark, Bill and I headed to my grandparents’ house for a family get-together. We do this a lot over the Summer, and nothing makes me happier.
I love seeing my family crowd around, in the same spot every year, and seeing the cousins who were once so small, tower above me. I love my family to pieces and I get genuine goosebumps in their company because I think I’m very blessed to have such a large clan of brilliant people beside me.
That said, I also blame them for the fact that I ate and drank too much. The ratbags.
It was so special to just sit there and drink in their company (and the mojitos I made). I forget to pick up my camera a lot of the time, because I’m so focused on taking in every second, in my head instead.
I loved having my brother there, and his girlfriend Nikky. And I loved seeing four of my cousins too. Even though four were missing.
I think, when I’m older, I will always look back on these moments. I will never forget the people who raised me, shaped me, held my hand, and showed me love.
Bill wasn’t quite so sentimental. Preferring the company of ‘creatures’ (bugs). So much so that Uncle Jamie just had to show him an earwig nestling in Grandma’s flowers.
We had a fairly late night and my parents came back to our house for a while, for a Limoncello and a chat. Which was lovely. We don’t get to socialise much, as, while I see them every day, it’s always such a fast-paced life. So to have them in our home was quite lovely.
On Sunday morning, I was woken at 6:20 by the little monkey in stripes. Despite a late night, he was up after a nightmare, so downstairs we went.
Mark ended up, bless him, accidentally waking me twice during the night, as he was up to watch the Conor McGregor fight (US time), and I was especially tired as a result.
That said, Bill and I shared pancakes for breakfast, we read books, we built a huge train track, we played with animals, we cuddled the cats, and we enjoyed a little YouTube, so, I really didn’t mind our early start together.
That was, until, he dropped a dead spider on my lap and I almost died.
Once I’d recovered, and Mark had surfaced, we spent some time as a family, and then I made us a roast dinner. This has been part of the plan since last Sunday, we promised Bill a Sunday dinner and then a watch of a ‘Minions Film’, by which we meant Despicable Me. And we never break a promise.
Even though Minions are bloody everywhere.
I forgot to mention! My cousin Liv is coming to work with my this week, for work experience, which I’m really excited about. I’m pleased I could set this up for her, and I never expected the gifts she got me – in the form of the little sign above, along with another about cats. I hope she gets lots from her week – I think work experience can be an amazing experience from both sides.
Oh! And those of you who remember my Father’s Day fail of getting presents delivered to my old house will be pleased to know that both gifts have found their way to their lovely recipients. This was Mark’s. I wanted to get him something that proved how special he was to Bill. Bill’s been saying this for a long, long time, and it forever makes me smile, and Mark seemed genuinely touched. “I’ll never forget it now.”
My mum made us some strawberry jam, with her twin sister, Julie’s, next-door neighbour’s strawberry harvest (mouthful). It was incredible with some clotted cream atop a scone (or ten). Are you cream, then jam, like me?
It’s now 22:12. I’m the last one up, and I kind of wish I’d snuck into bed with Mark earlier, as the air is cooling and I’m getting a bit of s shiver.
This weekend has been needed. Especially after time away. We needed time to be a family. And to enjoy each other. And I feel like I did.
I’m proud of myself. I was the mother I wanted to be this weekend.
And I know I’ll be looking back with a smile, come tomorrow.