Last year, I started to write posts about our weekends. It started in January, and I kept going and going. Sometimes I would miss them, but it became a huge passion of mine. Documenting our family time. Because these are the things I want to remember.
I have so many photographs of my son growing up and I adore them all. Because my memory is going to fail me one day. And I treasure every snap, from iPhone ones, to ones on my DSLR. I’ve always been a huge fan of real life. Nothing staged. Nothing made to look more than it is. I love real life. I happen to think it’s really beautiful, just as it is.
But as I fell pregnant, I just couldn’t keep up anymore. And I’m sad, sadder than you’d probably want to admit, that the last few months are a bit of a blur. I’ve not enjoyed life like I used to. And I’ve missed so many moments. And now memories are blurred by morning sickness, plaster dust and a lot of hormonal tears.
I really wish I hadn’t stopped. But I did. And the best part about it is that I have the chance to start up again.
I don’t want to put too much pressure on myself, to do it consistently, or with a video like I used to (someone tell me how I managed that as I just don’t know?). But I want to try and remember these last few months as a family of three.
Soon these really will be memories, because the future will see us change to a foursome. And I’m sure we have challenges ahead. And sleepless nights. And nappy explosions. And I want to remember my little boy just as his is, while I was his and only his.
So this weekend feels like the first proper one of the year. Because last weekend was post-Christmas and New Year fug. I was full of chocolate and wary of the week ahead.
But it’s amazing how quickly you adapt isn’t it? You just get into routine again and before you know it, it’s normal again.
Don’t get me wrong – really miss the naps though.
Our kitchen is coming along nicely now. I still have to paint the cabinets, but hey, I’m pregnant and I have a sneaking suspicion that I will do it when maternity leave starts at 38 weeks, as I know I’ll want something to do. If it gets done earlier than that – then great! But I wouldn’t expect a proper kitchen tour for a while yet. Because, well, if I’m going to do it, I want to do it properly!
My lovely Gramps and Mark put these shelves up on New Year’s Eve. They are from IKEA and I love them. I love things to look neat and tidy, but I also like thinks to look lived in too. Do you know what I mean? I keep some pretty things on here, and jars of pulses and pastas so I can grab them as I cook. I’m really proud of them!
This is another spot of the kitchen in the early morning light. I love it. I am really enjoying sitting on the sofa as I wait for something to cook. Or looking out the window into our back garden with a brew, usually in one of the Anthropologie mugs that I bought when our kitchen was just a dream in my head. The photo at the top of the post shows my favourite yellow one.
I have been honest about feeling down and stressed over the past few months. And I think that’s okay. I’m human. And a very emotional one at that! One of the biggest challenges was just that our house felt like it was a never-ending source of trouble. We spent our life savings on trying to make it the home we dreamed of, we cut back and we worked hard, and then things just kept going wrong.
We seemed to have a particular problem with water. It’s actually quite funny looking back. First it was the washing machine, it kept filling up and not draining. We got a man out, I paid extra for insurance, and it turned out it ate a tiny boy sock or three. Then it kept regurgitating bits for a while, and I had to clear it myself. Then the radiator exploded. When we’d just had a new floor fitted. And the water spraying from it was the colour of coal. It was boiling hot, stank, and hit our walls with extreme force. So we had to pay for a new radiator and plumbing. Seeing our maternity leave pot go down was really hard.
Then came the leaks. The bedroom. The living room. The kitchen. They took about a month to locate and fix.
Then, finally, for the last month or so. The plumbing in the kitchen. The sink wouldn’t drain. The washing machine would empty dirty water into the sink, which overflowed once. Same with the dishwasher – now that stank. Over and over again we’d try and work out what was wrong. Sink and plughole unblocker bought in gallons. Removing the u-bend. Crying a lot (hormones). We didn’t know what it was. United Utilities scared us by saying it might be an issue under our conservatory. And we didn’t call a plumber out as we didn’t think we could afford to fix it.
Then my parents came over this weekend for something unrelated, and as the sink gurgled and filled up with washing machine water, I think they realised how bad it was.
And so they searched, hands in drains outside, testing water, clearing debris. And then my dad accessed the pipe that flows through the wall of the kitchen and into the conservatory and it was there he found the problem. The pipe was stuck on a ledge, rather than being able to freely flow into the drain below.
And we were planning to call a plumber this week. I was trying to work out what I could cut back on, or what I could sell on eBay to make sure we didn’t touch our maternity pot again. And when I saw the water rush easily down the drain I burst into grateful tears.
My mum, who had been arm-deep in an outside drain, welled up too at my reaction, and responded with: “I really want to hug you but I think I might have poo on my hands.”
She’s a cracker. They both are.
Look at that sink drain. Just look!
Today, (it’s Sunday as I write this) I have just caught up with things. It’s been nice, but I already miss the ease of the holidays where I just did our washing bit-by-bit, or the house was tidy because we were here and on top of it.
I did catch some bump snaps in the hallway. Hi stretchies. A lot of people seem to think I’m huge (that old chestnut), but I’m measuring spot-on for dates. I don’t know if I just show more because my waist is small but my hips are wide? Who cares. I’m pregnant!
It feels like such a long time since I have taken snaps of my boy. Does anyone else think he looks like he’s about five now? It’s crazy to see him grow and at the speed of light now too. I feel bittersweet as his baby years are ending and he’s going to look huge compared to his newborn sister. That said, he’s got his own adventure ahead and he’ll hopefully never be too big for cuddles.
Blurry bump and grumpy bear slippers from ASOS. I normally hate slippers and socks – I’m a barefoot kind of person – but something about pregnancy (and probably months of dusty post-renovation floors) have made me a bit fond of slippers. So much so that I have three pairs. All cheap sale ones mind you. No one panic.
We pretty much asked for IKEA vouchers for Christmas, so this is one of the many things we were able to buy. More toy storage. We have toys everywhere. And one child. What will happen when there’s two? Or three? I dread to think.
One exciting thing about the week ahead is that my grandparents have offered to help decorate Bill’s bedroom. And we’re so giddy for him. And so grateful for the help. I am blessed to have my family. I would not be where I am today without them. And we would not manage the way we do without them either.
They save our bacon, and our souls.
To ease Bill into the move – he’s in the nursery while it’s all being done – I gave him his new bedding early. It’s from Next. Can you guess his bedroom theme?
I was lucky enough to sneak in a bath and a pamper while Mark built baby girl’s SnüzPod 2 and kept an eye on Bill. I made a Lush order in the sale. I never order things like this for myself usually. I just don’t anymore. But they were so cheap and I thought it would be nice to have some lazy pregnant baths and smell nice. That said, I bought six bath bombs. I’m down to three already and I’ve already used one as somebody else (who is three and blonde) has developed a little bit of a bath bomb addiction himself.
This brings me so much joy and that’s all I’ll say for now. I’ll review when she’s here, obviously, but it was amazing to see where our little girl will sleep, while she’s beside us. I’m so excited for her to get here now. As Mark said: “We just need a baby.”
I nipped to the park with Bill this afternoon, while Mark hoovered (which was really lovely of him). It was sunny today. Bright and cold and crisp. The park was oddly quiet. So we ran around, as best as a clumsy toddler and pregnant lady can.
He was flushed, muddy, with a runny nose and a cheeky grin. And I was so happy to spend time with him and capture him for a second. I wish I could do it more.
Those yellow rainbow boots.
And then, well, we ate Toad in the Hole, and pottered around for a bit. We’ve put clothes away. Tidied the kitchen ready for the week ahead. And Mark’s just found the new series of Birds of a Feather on the telly, so I’m trying really fast to wrap this up so I can relax…
Oh balls. I’ve got to make Bill’s packed lunch for tomorrow.