Thursday, 30 April 2009

Daily Gratitudes

:: Conversations with Phoebe - "I being lovely 'day Mummy!"
:: Nap time (most days)
:: The chance to hold a precious new baby this morning and catch up with her lovely mama
:: The Mother Magazine - beautiful
:: My felt ball kit from myriad sat ready to be used
:: Lovely kind GP mamas who are so supportive xx
:: Russ working nearby so he can come home for lunch, even if he did have to leave early this morning
:: Our parents for their generosity and love
:: An old friend who sent a belated birthday parcel and suprised me ;)
:: The local charity shop find of the week - wooden blocks (yes, more) and a lot of good books
:: Veg box goodness - the scent of spring in a box
:: Phoebe feeling the baby kick for the first time, and being utterly delighted!


Just wanted to say i'm still here, plodding on. Wrote a big post the other day but we had a power cut so i lost it and haven't had motivation to continue. Feeling a bit of renewed inspiration today with the arrival of a few books and the latest copy of The Mother. Not to mention the time i spent this morning holding newborn baby Ella - gorgeous little girl.

Hoping to have a quiet weekend with time for reading, reflection and pondering on a few issues that are floating about in my mind... if next door will stop playing their music so loud. It really feels like a Friday to me today, not sure why, but maybe this week i can have two Fridays. Friday alwayas feels an uplifting day to me.

Hoping to share this weekend some new photos and my current ideas list for sorting out our playroom. Also might start working on, or at least discussing, our birth plan for the new baby and what we would like to achieve before the baby comes.

Feeling full of hope and light today,
wishing you the same.

Laura xx

Friday, 24 April 2009

Life as it is

I have been thinking recently a lot about this house and the lack of decoration we have done since we moved in 18 months ago. It still feels like old people live here. It doesn't feel very 'us' at all. I think this is mainly due to lack of time (lots of time spent instead on the veg garden, visiting friends and family and running about after a small child) and also having the funds to actually get anything done. I'll be honest, it is hard living on one salary these days - even if its a good one. But this is our choice and I know its the right one. Being at home with my daughter (and bump) is the best thing i have ever done.

Going back to the house, I think that i have lacked the inspiration and motivation to do anything because i am still having such a hard time settling here. It still doesn't feel like home and i still miss my friends and family back in and around Stevenage. I don't really like this village, and I don't like Peterborough, but i am stuck here. I have accepted the fact that for the moment I only have a couple of friends, and I only see them once a week for a couple of hours. But that doesn't mean that every so often I can't just burst into tears because I feel so alone and trapped. If i don't blog very much it is usually because there has been nothing blog worthy about our life, or i am just overwhelmed with trying to meet the needs of a very sensitive toddler. I want to point out though, these issues are related to moving away from my wonderful support network, not because I am at home with a young child. I love being home with Phoebe - I just don't like the fact that neither of us gets to see our friends regularly.

For what its worth, I am still trying to 'make friends' and fit in here and will not stop doing that. I am even considering trying to set up my own 'natural kids' type group - if i can ever find anyone to come along. I can see that would really benefit Phoebe as well as me. I don't believe all that 'socialisation' rubbish that people say about school and nurseries, but I do believe we are sociable beings and we function best when we live in a more 'tribe-like' community atmosphere. I would love to have regular contact with the same group of (friendly and supportive) people once a week or so. The local toddler group just doesn't cut it, unless you like being ignored and having your child pushed around by unsupervised children fighting over the (usually broken and battery-less) plastic tat.

Having said all this, I am lucky in many ways and I am making a point of mentally going through the things I am grateful for each day. When Phoebe is a bit older I am hoping to share these 'daily gratitudes' with her as a way of reminding ourselves how privileged we are. I will share some of these at the end of this post and more in future days. I also hope to do more crafting for charity in future when i am less overwhelmed. I think these things can help me gain a better attitude and perspective on my life.

The reason for this post was to clarify (mainly for myself) where i am right now, my frame of mind and what is going on for me. I would like to blog more regularly and actually write rather than just posting pictures too. So don't be suprised if there is the odd 'article' or ramble. This place, although mainly about Phoebe and our family, is mine. They are my photos and words and it helps me to maintain a feeling of connectedness to you all (and to reach out to potential new friends in the net world) if i keep writing.

Some of the things I am grateful for today:

:: The mother and daughter pampering session which took place this morning. We are loving Burt's Bees milk and honey body lotion.
:: The movements of my next child, reminding me of the sweetness to come in August.
:: The compliment I got when Phoebe put on her sundress this morning - "Now i look pretty like you Mummy."
:: Inspiring blogs to ground me and lift my spirits on not so good days - see the links on the sidebar.
:: The post woman for bringing me 'Roots, Shoots...' and 'Storytelling with Children' and my lovely family for their kind presents.
:: Having a spacious house.
:: The sunshine
:: Soft skin on little arms snaking over my growing belly
:: Phoebe's growing vocabulary - "Mummy, your drink steamy or cold?"
:: Our garden and my husband's hard work on the veg patch to provide us with fresh organic food through the growing season.
:: This week's veg box with its beautiful asparagus and tomatoes.
:: The memory of yesterday afternoon, when Phoebe fell asleep snuggled next to me while I read her a library book.

Thank you for reading and for stopping by to see how we are getting on.

Much love to you all,

Laura xx

Thursday, 23 April 2009

Birthday Bookfest

It was my birthday on Tuesday. I spent a quiet day at home with Phoebe. I thought i would share my presents here to say thank you and also because I know this blog is read by some like minded ladies who might be interested in having a virtual browse of the latest additions to my bookshelf.

I got some lovely funky beads from B, made of recycled paper. :) Thank you!
Will be stringing these together later i hope.

Lynsey and Andy got me the fab book Seaweed and Eat It: A Family Foraging and Cooking Adventure which I have coveted since seeing it on the blog of a certain GP mama, and also something fun to spark my creativity The Girls' Doodle Book which i am very excited about! Thank you!

Nicola and John bought me Naturally Healthy Babies and Children: A Commonsense Guide to Herbal Remedies, Nutrition, and Health. Thank you. I have a book called The Natural Pregnancy Book: Herbs, Nutrition and Other Holistic Choices by the same author which I am enjoying at the moment.

Sam bought me Inspiration Sandwich which I hadn't heard of before but its really good. I am hoping to be sharing more about the book soon. But it is definitely inspiring. Thank you!

Also included in the picture is Simple Abundance: A Day Book of Comfort and Joy which was on my wishlist and I found in the local charity shop on Monday. :)

I also got an amazon voucher from Jon and Christine, or 'Grandma and Grandad', and some money from my parents ('Nanny and Grandad') and from Jonny and Emma.
So of course after much deliberation (and i do mean that - i don't get to buy myself things very often) I had an amazon spending spree last night!

I used the voucher to get Storytelling with Children (I love Hawthorn Books), Roots, Shoots, Buckets and Boots: Gardening Together with Children and Living Simply with Children: A Voluntary Simplicity Guide for Moms, Dads, and Kids Who Want to Reclaim the Bliss of Childhood and the Joy of Parenting. Thank you very much Jon and Christine!

With the money from my parents I bought Young at Art and First Art: Art Experiences for Toddlers and Twos (both of which i have heard recommended on creative blogs such as The Artful Parent) and also The Parent and Child Group Handbook: A Steiner / Waldorf Approach (Early Years). I'm not sure if i'll actually get as far as starting my own group but i have heard it recommended as a good book for parenting anyway and I would like to see what is involved in running my own group. We could certainly do with it here! Thank you Mum and Dad.

With my money from Jonny and Emma I got The Unschooling Unmanual. ooh contraversial! lol. Looking forward to reading this one. Thanks lil' (or not so little anymore) bro!

Really excited about reading through these, along with the books I haven't read yet from christmas, and putting some of the ideas into practice. I feel there's so much to learn. Its all very interesting and inspiring! Though I did have a laugh with my sister that i spent it all on books - as she said 'We are our Father's children!'. Lol.

Thank you everyone for your kindness, generosity and above all lovely birthday messages which brightened up my day! Love you all x x

So far this week...

We have made a dingle dangle scarecrow.

We got some more lovely small and extra small baby wraps bought from a lovely mum on the GP Forum

and a MaM babywearing cover bought from another lovely GP mama. It was a bit tricky to get a photo of it without modelling it and Phoebe wasn't too keen so here is a link to the MaM website which explains it.

Thank you to Shazronnie and Uma for the wraps and to Gina for the MaM cover.

We have had a couple of naps. Well, Phoebe has.

and sat on the potty fully clothed. This is about as close as we are getting to potty training! lol.

In all seriousness though, I don't think Phoebe will be ready for a while yet and we are waiting til she gives us all the signs. At the moment the potty and toilet are a bit cold and weird so we just have them about to get used to looking at. :)

Monday, 20 April 2009


A few new-to-us wraps bought from a lovely mum on the GP forum. Our new baby will look so cute in these in August! Thanks. :)

Lunch in the sun.

Phoebe gets ready for work.

Helping weed the greenhouse.

Checking on our seedlings.

The plants growing in our plastic 'greenhouse'.

Plants in our big greenhouse after Daddy finished building the adhoc shelving.

Part of the veg patch.

Phoebe takes a peek looking for stones.

Broad beans!

Asparagus! Ok, so we can't pick it for another two years but hey, its growing!

Rhubarb madness. Hoping to try and make rhubarb ginger smoothies soon.

Dinner. Yum!

Phoebe enjoying dinner and giving her best 'cheeky face'!

Fun on Saturday

Playing at the park with Lynsey, Andy, Jonny and Emma.

Blowing Bubbles with Nana!

Last week

Phoebe's new garden bench from Nanny and Grandad. Took this picture in the evening - this is where it lives when its not on the patio.

New bootees for a new baby. :) Welcome to the world Ella.

Phoebe's easter presents from us - a pink bunny and owl.

Self portait - this is Phoebe's 'cheese' face.

Making a collage on sticky paper (contact paper?) - not sure what we call it in this country.

More to follow later.

Wednesday, 15 April 2009

Lion! Grr

Forgot to upload this picture of the ami lion i made for Phoebe the other week. It came out pretty cute i think.

Google 'Followers'

I seem to be 'following' myself! Not quite sure how that happened! lol


Helping Grandad sew some seeds in his garden.

Thank you for the nice tools and gloves Nanny and Grandad.

Looking around with me.

Digging in our garden.

Planting potatoes with Daddy

Proud moment.

An improvised row marker shows where the last one for tonight goes.

Phoebe's dog picture - not garden related but very good.

Our garden as it looked yesterday evening - with no tree stump. Yay!