Monday, 11 June 2012

Running, ruins, and rhythm.

My goodness, where do I start?! We have had a fantastically busy week or two :)

Sam spent the Jubilee bank holiday with his dad which left me free to avoid all red-white-and-blue festivities, yay. Instead I saw a friend on Sunday, went to Skegness on Monday, out for dinner Monday night, shift on Tuesday and then ice cream in the Bail (don't tell Sam...!). On Wednesday I collected Sam from his dad's, went for lunch with my parents and then left him again :( Felt like a very bad Mummy, but it was just unfortunate timing as I was due at a fundraising quiz that evening. Quiz was good - I even got a sports question right which had stumped the rest of my team, which I still can't quite believe :) Thursday was a trip to Lis and Alan's, then off to the beach at Gibraltar Point with them, Sam, and my nephew William. Lovely walk (actually, it was mainly running, owing to two under-ten boys!) then lunch, after which we went to Bolingbroke Castle for a game of hide and seek.

Whereas this would normally have been a highlight of our week (and without detracting from our enjoyment of the day), it was overshadowed by the events of the weekend. Sam's first music festival!

We set off for Wychwood with a car loaded to the roof, collecting my dad and his partner on the way.  After a McDonald's lunch break we reached our apartment for the weekend, having decided not to introduce Sam to festivalling and camping in the same weekend. On entering, the only word was 'wow':

After settling in it was over to the festival village, full of apprehension about how Sam would cope. I needn't have worried - we'd watched Mr. Tumble's festival episode time and again, and it had done the trick:

We spent the whole weekend dancing, singing, laughing and smiling. I honestly don't think I've ever seen such a twinkle in Sam's eyes. There was one moment of panic when Sam slipped and hit his lip on the trolley, I was concerned he had bitten all the way through and dragged him off to the first aid tent - much to his irritation! He stood up, cried for a minute but then wiped his face and said "I'm okay Mummy. More music bands". What a brave soldier! Turns out that he had bitten the inside twice and cut the outside, but they were separate injuries and would therefore heal without any need for further intervention. Phew :)

Sam had his guitar with him, of course, and impressed us all with his feel for the music. He knew when to applaud, he knew when it was a quite lull rather than the end of the track, and he certainly knew when there was an awesome guitar solo to be enjoyed:

We had so many people come over and say how wonderful he was, and people were frequently found watching him rather than watching the stage! According to one of the official organisers, "He has got the best smile in the whole festival" :) Yep, I'm inclined to agree.

Further photos can be found here (I hope), I'm too shattered to upload them all onto here! But we had a truly fantastic weekend, despite the weather throwing all it could at us - trench foot with sunburnt face, anyone?!  Sam did not want to leave, we're looking forward to next year.

S xx

Tuesday, 29 May 2012

Sara vs Sara

Disclaimer: this is an observation, not a complaint. I love my life. I love Sam, and Sam is my life, so therefore I love my life.  It just occurred to me as I lay in bed last night that my entire life reflects that feeling of being too tired to do anything like read a book, but too awake to sleep: the upshot of which is that one ends up doing the enemy of sleep - thinking.

I currently occupy that same no-man's land  - I am neither one thing nor the other. The twenty-something-year-old women I know all fit into one of two categories: footloose and fancyfree, enjoying impromptu days out and alcohol fuelled nights; or settled down, enjoying quiet nights in with a partner and family day trips.  And yet I am neither of these. I cannot share the impulsive life of my non-parent friends, as I am tied to the house from 6pm each evening when Sam goes to bed. But nor do I enjoy sharing those evenings with anyone else. I cannot indulge in last-minute weekend shennanigans as everything requires planning and arrangement, but nor is there much appeal in days or meals out with Sam, without an adult or older child to provide some semblance of conversation!

I suppose I get the best of both the weekends I can (with enough warning) go out with my friends, and in the week I can enjoy time with my son. But in reality I feel like a fraud if I go out, as I should be a responsible mother at all times; and I feel like a fraud when I meet up with other friends with children, as they all live in their little family units and Sam and I are like loose ended tag alongs.

There's only one solution - Sam needs to hurry up and start talking properly so that his company feels more like a pleasure and less like a commitment!  Until then, I shall continue to drag my mother along so that Sam and I can enjoy a "family holiday", and pack Sam off to his father's at the weekends so that I can see those limited friends that can be bothered to wait until I'm free: I swear, the next person who texts on a midweek night asking me if I'm free to do something will wish they hadn't....

S xx

Thursday, 17 May 2012

Next cognitive level

So, Sam's signing something. And I don't understand. I ask for a clue:
"What's it like, Sam?"
"Like aeroplane, Mummy."
"Oh, helicopter?"

Amazing, he's learning to categorise objects and knows that there are elements in common. Similarly the other day with Nanny, moving things from one bowl to another - Nanny wasn't responding to Sam saying "one", so he helped her out with the clue "one, two, three, Nanny". Clever boy :)

S xx

Sunday, 13 May 2012

What's happening to me?

Got dragged to the cinema to see Avengers Assemble last night - and I really enjoyed it. What's going on, I don't like sci-fi...! Lots of funny moments though, and I'm now looking forward to seeing Prometheus when it comes out. Had a lovely lunch out and then a wander around town before absorbing the sunshine next to the Brayford Pool until it was time for the film - the wander around town involved heading to both downhill and uphill Lincoln, hard work in high heels I can tell you, and I have some pretty impressive blisters as proof!

Today I've made up for my gallavanting of last weekend by finally catching up on the housework and mowing the lawn (man was that a hard job, I've not done it for a few weeks due to all the rain we've had, and it had certainly been growing in that time!). Then this evening I fancied something sweet for pudding, and decided I could justify eating custard if I added eggs and made it high protein :) So here are my little egg custards tarts, minus the high fat pastry (and the nutmeg, which I don't like):

Yummy :)

S xx

Monday, 7 May 2012

Weekend away

Sam has been in Norfolk with Lis and Alan this weekend, whilst I went on a jolly to Leeds with Lilly. We went to an outdoor gig with performances from Sway, Wretch32, and headlined by Example. It rained on and off the whole way there and as we shopped in the afternoon, but thankfully it stayed dry all evening, although it was somewhat colder than we anticipated May being when we booked in December! Great gig, and great weekend away with Lilly :)

It sounds like Sam has been having a great time with Nanny and Grandad, and I'm sure Lis will blog about it later!  But I just had to share this text I received from Lis, which brought a tear to my eye - I swear my little boy is a real life angel, sent to bring joy to this world:

- - OMG a random man in the cafe (not a regular) just bothered to come and say 
how watching and listening to Sam over lunch had made his day and 
how he would never forget it and how wonderful he is. - -

S xx

Monday, 30 April 2012

Expensive day

I got a text from Sam's dad last night, saying he had hurt his back so couldn't drive to bring Sam back to me. I agreed to go over to Boston to fetch him, but on pulling up outside his house I somehow managed to burst my front tyre, and dent the wheel. No spare. Crap! Not a lot of mobile wheel replacers around on a Sunday evening :( Ultimately decided that the only option was to phone Lis and Alan, Lis was in the bath but Al, being the wonderful man he is, drove down to fetch Sam and myself. We spent the night with them - Sam slept like an angel, while I spent the time stressing about a) leaving my poor Beattie in the roughest part of town (see here) and b) how I was going to contact the educational psychologist who was due to make a home visit first thing this morning.

This morning saw an early start, and Al got us down to Bush Tyres for 8am, meaning the manager could send the mobile recovery van out to me before it started on the day's tasks. Excellent :) Things were starting to look up. Meeting the fitter at the car, he reckoned that although I would clearly need a new tyre, the actual wheel was only minimally damaged and could probably be hammered back into shape. He duly fixed the wheel and changed the tyre, during which time I received a phone call from the Ed Psych's secretary, saying she's ill and would have to rearrange the appointment. With no rush to return to Lincoln, we went back to Lis and Alan's.

Lis was due at the doctor's so we all went up there, and I suggested that while we were there we could nip into the travel agents. Just to look, of course.... We left above an hour later, with a holiday booked! Turkey, in June - I can't wait. Last year I fulfilled my dream of visiting Vesuvius and Pompeii, this year it will be Troy and Ephesus!!!

We spent the afternoon relaxing in the garden, and today ended on a much more positive note than yesterday. But my poor bank account won't know what's hit it, what with a holiday and new tyre...oops!

Here's hoping that the rest of this week is rather calmer. Lilly and I are off to Leeds at the weekend, to see Example, supported by Wretch 32. This year is a social whirl :)

S xx

Wednesday, 25 April 2012

Catching the limited rays of sun

I had a lovely weekend, despite the torrential rain - went out for lunch with a friend on Saturday and discovered the most amazing puddle, which we had to drive through (many times!). After a yummy lunch and a wander around the garden centre, we headed home to cook dinner ready for some other friends to join us. Had a great evening with dinner, laughter, chocolate cake, and the Rocky Horror Picture Show. What more could a girl want?!

Monday saw Sam having one of his trademark lie ins - after waking briefly at 8am, he went back to sleep until midday, totalling 18 hours in bed! When he eventually woke up, we joined Grandad Tick Tock for some lunch, followed by some sundrenched time in the garden.

Sam and Grandad watched the fish in the pond.

 Then Sam led Grandad on a trip down the garden path...

Before emerging in the wheelbarrow!

Which of course Mummy had to get into as well! No one was willing to push me though :)

Back to rain today though, rubbish! Come on summer, where are you hiding??

S xx

Thursday, 19 April 2012

Leave my baby alone!

Really wish these germs would leave my little man alone. Sam was sent home from school again today. He'd been out of sorts this morning and choking as if he would vomit but he didn't do, and wanted to go to school, so I sent him in; but by 9:30am I had the receptionist on the phone asking me to go to fetch him. Poor little thing was pale, limp, and bursting out in tears at random intervals. So I rushed home with him (I'd been waiting in for a delivery between 7am and 1pm, figured it would be typical if they showed up during the few minutes I was out!) and we settled down on the sofa. Pretty quickly he got his lunchbox out of his bag, and soon perked up after a bit to eat and drink.

As it turned out, the delivery hadn't happened while I was out and the guy soon turned up with our shiny new television. So this afternoon I have done some rearranging of furniture, setting up of the new television, and now we have a TV in our living room instead of separate living room and TV room. The living room is the one to get all the sunshine, so if we ever get any I am very excited about spending more time in this room (without the ongoing fight over whether or not to watch CBeebies...).

Sam took himself off to bed at 16:45, refusing dinner or even a drink, so I figured that rather than causing an argument I would just accept it - we'll have the argument in the small hours of the morning, if necessary! Sam's in bed, I've moved some sofas around, and am now relaxing in front of my posh new TV! I'll be early to bed, ready to deal with whatever tomorrow throws - I assume that Sam's illness is still the same germs / virus that has been pestering him for the last month or so. I just don't understand how anything can have survived the huge dose of antibiotics he was given!!

S xx

Tuesday, 10 April 2012

A brief but brilliant break

How was everybody's Easter? Ours turned out to be really good, when it could have been very different :)

Months ago, I booked the weekend at Lis's Bach so that Sam, Rick and I could go down. Since then Rick and I have split up, but rather than cancelling our weekend away I asked our friend Lilly if she would like to come - we've been talking about going to the Bach for years, but she spends most of her life at work (or abroad) so it's not been easy to find time. Looking at the bank holidays, we discovered that although she was working Saturday morning, we could leave at lunchtime and have two nights away before being back Monday night. So we did, and it was great!

We headed down via Cromer, where we nipped into Morrisons for some shopping (mainly chocolate, it being Easter and all!), then down to the Bach in time to get Chinese takeaway for dinner. Sam went to bed, and Lilly and I got huddled up to watch a film. Sunday morning saw a drizzly start but we decided to brave it and head to Pettitts - we passed through rain on the way there, but it held off for most of the day. We had a great day with lots of laughs (and an injury, Lil bruised her coccyx which was painful for her but hilarious for me! Sorry Lilly, love you!).

Sam finally got the chocolate cake that he had been requesting all week - thank you Nanny Janny :) (Lilly's mummy treated us to some Easter cakes)
 ...and very much enjoyed burying himself in the sand. He was at it for ages, even asking other people to help. All the adults around found it hilarious!

 Mummy decided she had to be brave, as Sam wanted to go on the slide. Much screaming, from me....
 ...but eventually it became fun, and Sam and I went time and time again.

 Auntie Lilly wasn't keen to go on the train, but Sam insisted - and she survived :)
 I had planned to stop for an ice cream on the way home, but it looked like rain was going to stop play for us. However just as we reached Mundesley, the rain stopped :) Obligatory trip to the beach...
 ...and eating of ice cream. Bubblegum flavour for Lilly...
 ...strawberry for Sam...
 ...and fudge for Mummy.
 On returning to the Bach, I left Lilly and Sam in the car for a few minutes whilst I set up the Easter Egg Treasure Hunt. Here they are deciphering a clue...

...and here's everything they found! Space hoppers, perfume, and lots of chocolate!

Phew, that was a busy day! Night night :)

Yesterday the weather gave up on us, and rained all day. So rather than going to the park as planned, we just headed home very slowly, along the coast road, stopping in Hunstanton briefly for lunch.

It was a fantastic break, and we're looking forward to going back for a bit longer, with hopefully better weather :)

S xx

Wednesday, 4 April 2012

Pretty things :)

Well what a lovely day I had yesterday - there were smiles, there was laughter, and there were tears. I went wedding dress shopping with my best friend Helen :) The wedding isn't until 2014 but she wanted to just see what was out there - as it happened, she absolutely fell in love with "the one", and my goodness did she look beautiful. We've been friends since we met 16 years ago, and it's so good to see her life come together so perfectly. I won't describe the dress or post a photo, just in case word gets back to the groom (I don't think he reads my blog, but it's really not worth the risk!), but she looks so stunning in it that I had a little weep!
It was a lovely girls' day out with the bride, the mother of the bride, the mother of the groom, the bridesmaid, the bridesmaid's mother, and myself (the maid of honour, wahooooo!!!). Helen tried dresses, then we went for a lovely pub lunch (thank you Carolyn!), followed by a return to the shop to try on a few bridesmaid's dresses. Didn't imagine we'd find the right ones for myself and Alice, but actually one I tried fits in perfectly - it suits me and my style, and also matches the style and theme of the wedding, as well as looking great next to Helen's dress. Result! Now we've got two years to wait before going shopping again for Alice's dress - she's only 10 but will be nearly 13 by the time of the wedding, so her figure will change so much that we can't even make a decision on style at the moment. Mind you, she fell in love with one and was very reluctant to take it off!

She was also beside herself looking at the tiaras, and tried on at least two different tiaras with each dress, just to see how they looked :) I must confess, when she put one on me my smile did get a bit bigger and I felt almost like a princess, and I'm secretly very very excited about the prospect of maybe wearing one on the big day (well, if Alice gets one then I want one!!!)

I also now completely understand those girls who get swept away with the details of a wedding, and almost forget about the marriage itself! Dresses, jewels, it's all so amazing and beautiful. If I ever get married, I don't think there's much chance of it being a low key affair!

Whilst we were prancing around and feeling pretty, Sam was having a day with Nanny and Grandad - and from what I can work out he very much enjoyed himself :) He's learnt all sorts of new words, and is finally eating again. His thrush has nearly gone, and even his cold is improving at last. We're currently chilling out - everytime I suggest something to do, Sam says "No Mummy, go to sleep" and lies down! Ah well, I don't mind having a quiet afternoon :)

S xx

Wednesday, 28 March 2012

Well if you don't know...

Today's been a non-productive drag of a day, and I can't believe it's not even 4pm as I'd happily go to bed right now!  Sam woke up far too early given that it was a bonus day off school, so we spent a couple of hours in our pyjamas, watching Mr. Tumble.  A follow up call to the GP surgery (and an apology from them for not phoning back as promised, yesterday) confirmed that Sam's GP had written a prescription for an alternative cream for his thrush, since there's a manufacturing problem and no one has the initial one in stock. Dispenser promised to fax it across to our local pharmacy, so we got dressed and set out for the 3 mile round trip. Myself, Sam, the buggy, and the guitar! However our pharmacist informed us that there is also a manufacturing problem with the replacement that had been prescribed. Oh FFS!!!! But, being the lovely man that he is, he simply said "Leave it with me, I'll sort it out. Come back this afternoon."

 So we went home, and attempted to relax in the garden for a while - easier said than done. Briefly, this was Sam's attempt at enjoying the sunshine:
If anyone was in any doubt, then yes - the television is playing a DVD of Something Special.

After a brief period of not relaxing, Sam asked to go to the park. So we went to the park. He didn't want to walk the two minutes down the road - I politely informed him that if he wasn't able to walk that far, there was little point going to the park at all. At the park, Sam didn't want to go on anything. His main objective was to get himself on the opposite side of the gate to Mummy - it didn't seem to matter who was on which side!  Eventually we came out of the park and sat on the grass patch that backs onto it. Crying. A good twenty minutes was spent here, with no explanation. I was running out of ways to ask "What is wrong?" when finally Sam answered me - "I don't know!" Oh flipping heck boy, what chance do I stand if you don't even know what's up?! At last Sam was persuaded that we could sit on the grass to cry at home, so we gathered ourselves up and left - on the condition that Sam didn't have to walk, but could have a 'cuddle' instead (long ago he realised that "Give baby a cuddle" was much cuter than just "Carry me").

At home, it was clear Sam was very tired, so I thought if we snuggled up on the sofa he might fall asleep. Nope! He came very close a few times, but always realised just in time to rouse himself. So I rang the pharmacy and, wahoooo, they had managed to get hold of the cream we needed. Typically, there had been one tube in the GP's dispensary all along, but because of the prescription system we are not allowed to collect from there as we live too close. Regardless, we jumped in the car and went to fetch the cream which is now doing its job smeared all over Sam's rash.

No prizes for guessing what we're doing now......Hello, I'm Justin, let's go and meet my friends....

S xx

Tuesday, 27 March 2012

How does your garden grow?

Well, it appears Sam should have been called Mary - the contrary! After half an hour of determined "We are going to enjoy the sunshine" from Mummy, and "No, I want to watch CBeebies, sob" from Sam, I gave in and asked if he wanted to go inside to watch CBeebies. "Yes please Mummy". He jumped out of his tent in the garden and ran over to where I was gathering things from where I had been sitting. But instead of following me inside, he proceeded to just sit in my chair, very happily. Enjoying the sunshine on HIS terms, it would appear!

On a note of development, Sam has discovered the personal pronoun 'me'. Sitting in the garden with his lunch, Sam wasn't really eating. At my prompt "Are you eating some more beans on toast Sam?" he responded incredulously "ME????" whilst pointing to himself. (Incidentally, he didn't eat anymore beans. Just as when in Boots he asked for Wotsits, and on receiving a packet ate three. Or like last night when he had one bite of a banana before announcing he had finished.)

Oh, and I'm now officially blaming Sam for my weight! He requested some chocolate spread whilst in Tesco, so I bought him some. At home this afternoon, I asked if he'd like a chocolate spread sandwich. "No thank you. Mummy's chocolate." Mummy's chocolate? "Yes, Mummy chocolate sandwich." You want Mummy to eat a chocolate spread sandwich? "Yes!" Well, I always do as I'm told...... ;)

S xx

Cometh the spring, cometh the thrush

And no, unfortunately I don't mean the feathery singing kind. I mean the red, itchy, oozing, fungal kind. Which my poor little boy has got at both ends of his system :( As if the meningitis scare wasn't enough, he's been suffering with a cold ever since, and then got a nasty nappy rash at the end of last week - couldn't get appointment with doctor until Monday, and by the time Sam got home after the weekend he had got the infection in his mouth too :( Horrible!  So he's now snotty, sore, and has a very gunky mouth.

Doesn't seem fair somehow, but then again my friend's little girl has just been released from Nottingham QMC after three weeks in ICU, and this isn't unusual for her.  So really, Sam and I have got it easy. We need to remember that - things could always be much, much worse.

So, after a very lazy morning we're shortly heading off into town - we need antifungal cream (getting the medication yesterday was such a faff: our usual pharmacy had neither the cream nor the medicine, they ordered in the medicine but couldn't get the cream at all; we collected the medicine last night after it had been delivered, and tried other pharmacies for the cream but no luck. Hopefully the big Boots in town will prove more successful), and both of Sam's pairs of glasses are currently broken so a trip to the opticians is also in order!

Hopefully this afternoon we can sit in the garden and enjoy the sunshine, like we did on Sunday:

S xx

Friday, 23 March 2012

Much better week :)

Things are much better in the Sara&Sam household!  Although we're still waiting for official blood culture results form the hospital, Sam is much improved and now back to his normal cheeky self. He's finally started eating a bit here and there, and is drinking huge amounts of fluid which is great.

We've had a relatively calm week, after the stresses of the weekend. On Monday we headed to Lis and Alan's to enjoy 'Mothering Monday' - lovely little walk, saw some gorgeous daffodils, and then a yummy lunch at The Teahouse In The Woods in Woodhall - bizarrely, now an Italian restaurant! [Photos on Lis's blog, here] Sam was hard work and unhappy, but it was nice to get out and about.  Tuesday saw Sam back at school, then we went for dinner with my Dad, after which my friend Claire came round for a few hours - not seen her for a few weeks, so it was great to catch up.

 Last night (Thursday) Lis and Alan came over to stay, and babysat while I went out with Lilly - trip to Sheffield O2, to see Noah and the Whale :) (Also known as Jonah and the Whale, Noah and the Machine...!).  Getting there was slightly stressful, due to Lincoln traffic and GoogleMap directions (lies, all lies!) but we made it in plenty of time.  Support act was the very cute but strong voiced Emmy the Great, followed by a great gig by the smart-suited boys :) Far more musically talented than I had realised, and they seemed to be genuinely enjoying themselves which is always a bonus!

A great first gig to start off the year, next up is Example in Leeds, supported by Wretch 32.

S xx

Friday, 16 March 2012

Aaand breathe

Well, what a week.

Sam was out of sorts when he arrived home on Sunday night, but we kept busy visiting family and then he had an early night. Lis joined us on Monday morning for a day of shopping, and Sam's mood didn't improve much but he was snuffly so we dosed him up with Calpol and that seemed to help. While he was at school on Tuesday, Lis and I had ANOTHER (very expensive) day of shopping, successful but exhausting, and I also did some painting in the kitchen. Tuesday evening saw a shattered Sam, who still refused to eat and went to bed very early, waking a couple of times in the night but happy to go off to school on Wednesday. Once Sam was at school Lis headed home, and I went to bed for a four hour nap!! I just can't take the pace anymore ;)  Anyway, dinner out with my Dad on Wednesday night and then bed.

Thursday I planned to catch up on all the housework whilst Sam was at school: what I didn't plan was to get a phone call just after 9.30am saying Sam had a rash that was concerning them, would I come and fetch him please.  So drive across town, collect Sam, and take him straight to A&E. I defy any parent to not react to 'non-blanching rash' with 'OMFG meningitis'. Expected triage nurses to say he was fine and send him home, but no. The rash coupled with his lethargy, refusal to eat or drink, and general ill health was enough to get the doctor worried, she contacted the paediatrician who demanded he be admitted straight to a ward. On the ward, blood cultures were requested - inserting a cannula into an unanaesthetised wriggly four year old is HARD. I went with Sam into the treatment room initially, hoping my presence would calm him, but after multiple attempts in both hands from two paediatricians, a time out was called. Sam and I went back to his room while a more senior consultant came down to help. This time I asked the nurses to take him in, while I sat in his room and sobbed. Eventually one came back to tell me they had succeeded if I wanted to go in - such a relief to see my little man relaxed in the arms of a nurse, cannula safely in hand.  The blood stained fingers poking out from his bandage were testament to the difficulty faced though.

So with the cannula in and the rash getting worse, antibiotics were started, as well as paracetamol to bring down his temperature. Then onto a saline drip, little man was clearly very dehydrated. But what a change as soon as the IV started, he suddenly woke up and became aware of what was going on.  And then the news that the blood cultures take at least 48 hours in the lab, plus transport time, so we would be transferred to a different ward as we were in the day unit which closes at 9pm. Oh god, a night in hospital.

Still refusing to eat or drink, Sam chilled out with CBeebies on his personal TV whilst my Dad visited, and a couple of brilliant friends brought pyjamas and colouring books for Sam, and chocolate for Mummy :)  Once Sam was asleep Grandad stayed with him, while I nipped home for overnight clothes etc. Realising at 9pm that I hadn't eaten since 5pm the day before, I discovered a sandwich in the bag of goodies from Lilly and Joy :)

A bad night ensued, with babies who didn't stop crying, nurses who didn't stop checking Sam's blood pressure, and an IV drip which didn't stop alarming all night - even the nurse was sick of it, and she wasn't trying to sleep!!  But this morning brought better news - Sam woke up much brighter, and even had a drink. His IV fluids were about finished so they weren't renewed, and he ate a bit of breakfast. Then came some fantastic news - although the results weren't back to rule out meningitis or septicemia, all the doctors thought he was greatly improved and as the rash was now improving, he could go home as long as we return first thing tomorrow for the next lot of antibiotics, and possibly Sunday morning too.  The nurse tried to give him his antibiotics IV before we left but his cannula had become bent, no wonder after the hassle of getting it in, so tomorrow he will have them injected instead. In a way this is a pain, as after the stress of the cannula we will now have to go through the stress of injection too, but it does mean he can have a bath tonight, and I won't need to be on constant high alert to make sure he doesn't tug at the lead!

So, now we're home. And he seems alright - although 24 hours semi-naked has convinced him that he shouldn't ever have to wear clothes, and he is currently sitting on the sofa without so much as a nappy (I'm trying to stay calm....)! The rash has calmed, his is rehydrated, and he has eaten a little bit this afternoon. Hopefully he will have an early night tonight and get a good sleep, and so will I!  Much calmer now, and not overly concerned about the blood cultures as I think they'll be negative, but my goodness that was more stress than we needed or wanted yesterday. All serves to reaffirm the fact that my little man is an absolute angel, so brave and patient (unlike his mother, or father). As ever, nurses were sorry to see him go, what a twinkling little star :)

Mummy loves you Sam Sam!

 S xx

Tuesday, 6 March 2012


Steak and roasted mixed veg for dinner. Been looking forward to it all day. Got all the prep done while Sam was at school, so just final bits this evening. Left Sam watching Justin's House while I served up dinner. Joins me in the kitchen, tantrum. Finally serve dinner, come back through to front room - drink all over my seat on the sofa. Not happy. Put down dinner, proceed to clear up drink and turn over cushion. Nearly achieved. Sam doesn't want dinner - flips my plate over. Sofa and floor now covered in delicious steak and veg-chips, with jammy sauce. Actually screamed. Cheeky child told me to calm down. Sam now in bed. Mummy hungry, tired, and on brink of tears. With no idea what to have for dinner. Children can be very testing.

S xx

Monday, 5 March 2012

That Justin Fletcher

Hmm, Justin Fletcher. The name that any parent with a preschooler cannot fail to know. He's got a lot to answer for...

He's responsible for Sam wandering around the house picking up random objects and shouting "hello" (trying to work out which one is today's 'telephone', like in Justin's House).

He's repsonsible for Sam walking around the shops saying "Hello, I'm Justin. Let's go and meet my friends" or "Oooh, Mr. Tumble's spotty bag, thank you" a la Something Special.

He's responsible for Sam running all over going "Oooh ooh aah aah ooh ooh aah aah, I'm being a monkey" (from the episode in which Mr. Tumble impersonates many animals).

He's responsible for Sam's tantrums when I turn the TV off.

He's responsible for the fact that when I turn the TV off, Sam goes to sit in front of the mini-TV, face against the screen, hoping Mr. Tumble will magically appear.

He's responsible for Sam stealing Aunty Lilly's handbag when we're out shopping and attempting to hang it up on every available post, then doing the 'magic' "to send the spotty bag to Mr. Tumble" - "Take your finger, touch your nose, blink three times, and off it goes".  Except it never does...

He's responsible for the ridiculous amount of spotty stuff around my house, as everything spotty must automatically mean Mr. Tumble.

He's responsible for all the ridiculous songs that get stuck in my head: Gigglebiz gigglebiz; The instrument song; Justin's House Theme; Hello Hello; Sing a song day; the list goes on, and on.

Then again....

He's responsible for Sam being able to communicate using Makaton.

He's responsible for Sam learning about places we've not yet been.

He's responsible for Sam getting up to sing and dance.

and most importantly
He's responsible for Sam occasionally sitting quietly for 10 minutes, long enough for Mummy to chill out with a cup of tea!

Okay Justin, you have your merits. And Sam loves you, so who am I to criticise??

S xx

P.S. As I write this, I can hear 'ooh, look, Mr. Tumble's spotty bag' coming from the other room - brief investigation shows that no, it's Mummy's non-spotty handbag!

Sunday, 4 March 2012

Another mini-milestone

So, apparently Sam can take the lid off yoghurt pots. And does NOT need my help: "NO Mummy, go and sit down". Oops, silly me for trying to help! As I sat down, I grabbed my camera ready to take a photo of yoghurt-explosion, but how wrong I was - Sam skilfully removed the lid (in one piece), gave it a lick, and then handed it to me. Smart arse!

The weather here seems determined to remind us that it is not spring yet - following some gorgeous days last week which I spent sitting outside in the sunshine, today we have had downpours of rain and snow!

S xx

Monday, 27 February 2012

Blame the penguin

Now that Sam is doing four full days a week at school, it's more important than ever to make the most of his days off. He stayed with me this weekend rather than going to his dad's, so on Saturday we had a trip to Peterborough with my friend Lilly, and then on Sunday we had a relaxed day - carvery lunch with my grandparents followed by a trip to the park.

Today we've had a lovely day blowing away a few cobwebs at Gibraltar Point with Nanny and Grandad. We had a great refreshing walk, then into the cafe for a yummy lunch. Great to feel we've done something with the day, and after that fresh sea air Sam should sleep well ready for school tomorrow.

After our lunch we headed back to Nanny and Grandad's house, where we chilled out for a while and Sam read some books. Cue hilarious moment of the day.  Sam, standing next to his toy box, passed wind. As per usual, we responded 'Pardon you, Sam' but he took us by surprise with his claim
'It came from the box'!!
No Sam, it was you....
'The box - it was penguin.'
'It was peeenguin'

Nanny and I were in absolute hysterics, my chest actually hurt. He never normally expresses an awareness of bodily functions, never mind to blame it on his toy - and to stick determindly to the story!

S xx

Thursday, 23 February 2012

Funny farm

What a gorgeous day - I'm definitely getting in a summery mood now! Had my new cooker fitted this morning, following which I took my Dad out for lunch to thank him for his help. We went to the local pub and it was warm enough to sit out in the beer garden, absolute bliss (especially considering it was -13C only a couple of weeks ago!); then when I got home I mowed the lawn in my back garden before sorting out a few odd jobs that needed doing. I also picked up a corkboard, onto which I've stuck a world atlas - with pins in each country that Sam has visited. It is now on his bedroom wall, ready for when he starts to show an interest in the world!

Sam has just unearthed the pogo stick which I bought my nephew for his birthday, and decided that he wanted to give it a go - and he wanted Mummy to take turns with him! Well, I couldn't do pogoing when I was little, and I certainly can't do it now, on a pogo stick made for five-year-olds! Cue much hilarity, followed by Sam thinking that a musical accompaniment might didn't! But it did allow me to focus on the guitar and get a break from pogoing - phew :)

After singing various songs to me, Sam handed me the guitar and asked me to play Old Macdonald's Farm. I paused at the cue for each animal, and for the first time Sam supplied both the animal and the noise :) What a star. I was suitably impressed with his choices, all of which could actually be found on a farm (unlike in renditions at Nanny and Grandad's house!) - until we got to 'pirate'....and then 'door' ('with a knock knock here', if you were wondering!). Hmm, it started so well!  He looks so cute sitting on the floor with crossed legs, swaying as he sings and plays his guitar - can't wait to take him to his first music festival this year!

S xx

Tuesday, 21 February 2012

Feeling like a proper Mummy again

Well, that's half term over. It has been a wreck of a week! We had all sorts of plans, but then we both came down with a feverish germ, Sam at the start of the week and me at the end. Thankfully we only lost one day to it, but it was the busiest one and I was sorry to have to cancel plans with Sam's friend Isabella, we haven't seen her and her family for a long time.  Over the weekend I missed out on a few more things, specifically going to see my lovely brother and sister-in-law-to-be, as my grandparents were going too and I didn't want to share my germs with my rather frail Grandad. Anyway, a quiet weekend let me recover somewhat.

We spent yesterday catching up with chores - Sam was not impressed! I dragged him to the GP surgery, then the pharmacy, back to GP, back to pharmacy, then to the GP in the neighbouring village, then home for a bite of lunch before heading to Tesco. NOT a popular Mummy! I did remedy things a bit by taking him to dinner with his Grandad, but I think he was glad to be back at school this morning (although his inner teenager was in full flow this morning: 'No Mummy, I'll stay in bed. Go back to bed Mummy. Night night!' and so on).

Whilst lying in bed last night I convinced myself that I could and would spring clean the front room and bathroom while Sam was at school today, but no sooner had he gone than I was sitting on the sofa with a cup of coffee, and flicking through the TV channels...oops! One hot cross bun later, I forced myself to get up and on with something. By the time I next sat down the front room was done, and the bathroom - and Sam's room, the hallway, the living room, and the kitchen. Plus I've cleaned the windows, inside and out (my Gram would be proud, I even washed the shed window!!). Phew!! After a brief cuppa, I got on with making a batch of pancakes, it being Shrove Tuesday and all.

It felt great to meet Sam from school knowing that most of the house is tidy (of course I have left my study and bedroom, the two awful rooms, for a later date!), and dinner ready to eat after a quick zap in the microwave. Plus a check of Sam's lunchbox showed that I'd been pretty successful with the pack-up today :) so now I'm thinking about what to give him for tomorrow. Real Mummy stuff, I feel like such a grown-up!

Sounds like he's had a great day at school, so I think we deserve our current state on the sofa watching television.  Mr Tumble is on a boat on the Broads, and there's an icecream boat!! I'm full of excitement for trips to the Bach in the summer months - we agreed last year that we would get a boat one day this season, and Sam seems very excited about the prospect. I'm also looking forward to Bewilderwood, and Norwich, and steam trains, and nature reserves, and trips to the beach, and..........*fades out into private reveries*.  February is nearly over, and March is the start of Spring :) Bring on those golden rays!

S xx

Thursday, 9 February 2012

Who do you think you are?!

It has long been a source of amusement that when drinking Sam sometimes sticks his little finger out, but his pretension seems to be going a step too far...

Mummy: Would you like some raisins Sam?
Sam: Yes please Mummy.
M: hands S a small box of raisins
S: No Mummy!
M: But you said yes Sam.
S: Yes...., in a bowl Mummy!

Oh dear me :(

S xx

Wednesday, 8 February 2012

Crafty monkey

Today seems to have been busy - logically it hasn't, but it has involved the hospital, the most draining place ever.  Sam went to school, then I collected my grandparents and took my Grandad in for his chemotherapy. Home to fetch Sam, then back to grandparents' to get Gram, drop Gram off at oncology ward and take Sam to opthalmology. Wait to see two consultants for Sam, go back to find Gram and Grandad, then to pharmacy, then home. Phew. I'm shattered!

And I'm not the only one - or so I thought... My beautiful son fell asleep in the car, so I gathered him up and brought him in the house. It is a standard performance here that when we get through the door I will ask Sam to remove his shoes and coat, and he will claim not to be able to do one or both. Of course he can, and eventually does, but he tries to persuade me to do it... Anyway, since he was half asleep today I whipped off coat, shoes, and glasses, and settled him into his bed. At which point he jumped up and said 'No Mummy! Not bed!' Cheeky little urchin had stayed quiet while I did everything for him, but is now wide awake!

On a much cuter note, he has a frequent mini conversation when he looks out of the window at the moment. it goes 'Ooooh, snow. Cold. Merry Christmas! Oh, no, Christmas finished. Snow?'  This is the first year he has been particularly aware of snow (last year he just knew it was cold and wet!), and already he associates it with Christmas. Subliminal learning is a scary thing....

S xx

Sunday, 5 February 2012

Tiddly pom

Well after the absolute hecticness (yes, that's a word, I just made it one!) of last week, this weekend has been bizarrely quiet. Friday night involved a hot bath and magazine, yesterday I was on shift from 12-3pm then home for a lazy afternoon, hot bath again and early night. Today I picked Sam up early from his dad's and we went to a friend's birthday party. It was a bit of a weird one, as Sam and his classmates get picked up by taxis / coaches and taken to school so the parents very rarely meet each other - Sam was trying to tell me the names of children but he wasn't clear and I couldn't help! Still, I've met a couple of them now so that's progress.

Great couple of hours, but Sam was well ready to come home by the end of it - tired and grizzly, and very uncooperative. Unfortunately for him I'm getting grumpy now too as missing Rick really starts to kick in! Ten days until he's here, and only a month before he has worked his notice at work and can move to somewhere a bit more local.
The good news this weekend is that I spoke to Sam's dad on Friday and he agreed that Sam can stay with me for the first weekend of the month from now on - when relaying this information to Rick he informed me that he has spoken to his ex, and she agrees to Ez spending every other weekend with him when things have settled down. Things are looking very good for the future :)

S xx

Thursday, 2 February 2012

Exhausted, but in a good way

Wow, it's been a crazy week! BF got off shift so came over last Wednesday, and since then seems to have been a constant whirl of activity. The end of last week revolved around job applications and party preparations, as Sam turned four on Monday. BF and I were like ships in the night on Saturday, as I already had various commitments in the day, then Sunday we went into town for some last minute shopping and a leg stretch.  Sunday night saw Sam so tired that he only managed to wake up for a bath before he was back asleep (I pick him up at 4pm!), so I called school and he took the day off on Monday. This allowed him to come to Boston with BF and me to collect BF's daughter Ez, although Sam refused to sleep at all throughout the journey, and managed to wake Ez when she fell asleep!  Junk food lunch followed by a party at Wacky Warehouse, home for an hour or two and then out for dinner: big mistake Mummy, too ambitious for one day! Ez was very tired and clingy, Sam was very tired and whingey....hard work, but good to see the other side of the family, and Lilly, and to introduce BF's daughter to them all.

Having packed Sam off to school on Tuesday morning we hoped to take Ez shoe shopping but otherwise chill out - unfortunately she woke up very under the weather; we took her back to bed with us but she promptly vomitted over everything :( Generally a very quiet day which involved Rick soothing Ez, and me doing constant clothes washing / drying! Rick took Ez back to her mum's, and we had just settled down for the evening when his friend texted to say he was in the area, could he come for a cuppa. Lovely to meet him, but we were in bed the second he left!

Wednesday I somehow allowed myself to be dragged to the gym with Rick (worth pointing out here that he trains and competes at strongman, the gym is a big part of his life) - it was great to see him training and to gain some more understanding about what he does, but when I asked him to show me a few things to do I discovered that he'd be a great personal trainer - encouraging and hateful in equal measures! My goodness am I aching today!!

Very lazy morning today while Sam was at school, then this afternoon we have spent a good couple of hours at the swimming pool, as well as a bit of time at the soft play area. Rick's currently at the gym, Sam's watching Mr. Tumble, and I'm trying to convince myself that my muscles don't ache quite as much as they do! Climbing wall tomorrow, but it's okay because Rick's going back to Wales for a while so I can return to my slobbish ways!

On the subject of Rick, I'm still finding it hard to believe - we seem to be in a proper grown up relationship! I mean, when we disagree about things we actually have a sensible conversation, exploring our opinions and the reasons behind them. What the hell?! Everything is great, we make a fantastic team and he makes me so happy - I'm now one of those people whom I hated a mere few months ago: unbearably happy and positive, and all *in love* and stuff. Bleurgh!

S xx

Thursday, 26 January 2012

Joys of spring

I wandered out into the garden yesterday and saw a few little spring bulbs delicately rearing their heads. Funny how such a little thing can make me smile.

We've had some beautiful sunrises and sunsets recently (although Lis does seem to think I'm seeing the world through rose-tinted specs.....!), hopefully Mother Nature will be happier this year than she seemed to be last year.

Having a lovely chilled out afternoon with Sam at the moment, whilst Rick is at the gym, then we're off out for dinner with my dad.  I wonder how it will compare to the dinner I cooked for Rick yesterday:
Two chicken breasts baked in a dish of ratatouille, coupled with brussels/cabbage/spinach/broccoli tossed with bacon and toasted walnuts. Apparently I'm a brilliant girlfriend....we both acknowledge it probably won't last for long!!

S xx

Wednesday, 25 January 2012

I feel you're not listening...

Sam: Chocolate buttons please.
Saz: No, no more.
Sam: In a bowl.
Saz: No Sam, no more chocolate buttons.
Sam: Please Mummy?
Saz: No.
Sam: Chocolate buttons? Yeah? (Getting up and walking to the door.) Chocolate buttons in a bowl? Yeah? Okay. Mmm, chocolate buttons. Yeah. (Reaches kitchen door, it is locked) Oh. Mummy - chocolate buttons?
Saz: I said no, Sam.
Sam: Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah!! Chocolate buuuuuuuuuuuttons :(

Poor child!

S xx

Monday, 23 January 2012

We're still alive...

Okay, so I haven't blogged for ages. I had a few comments on previous posts from complete strangers, very suspicious sounding and it made me nervous about the fact that anyone can read my blog. Still, I might do a post every now and then :)

So, what's new with us? Biggest change really is in my lovelife - the guy I have been seeing on and off for a couple of years now has finally become my official boyfriend. Literally could not be happier! We've been through so much together and apart, and it feels so good to have finally made it to this stage where we can tell the world we are together. Sam loves him to bits, and I just feel so positive about the future knowing that it will have Rick in it. Things will take time, he is currently based in Wales which makes for a long old drive everytime he comes to see me, and Sam's existing commitments to his father and school make it impractical for me to go to Wales. But hopefully we won't have a long wait and he'll soon be able to relocate to Lincoln :)

Sam is progressing fantastically - he's been back into hospital recently to have his right tear duct probed and washed out again, which will hopefully work this time to cure his sticky eye; and he has also had grommets reinserted (one had moved, and one disappeared altogether!). 
This morning's gem: picked Sam up from school, usually I take the car but today I walked up with the buggy. Sam walked for a while but I wanted him in the buggy at the main road - he refused, so I got in. Thought he would laugh but instead he tried to push me along, and offered me a banana and a drink - exactly what I do when he sits down!

I've temporarily withdrawn from my OU module, finding that I have too much on my plate just at the moment and wasn't enjoying it at all. No point forcing myself to do it and coming out with poor marks, when I can just have a few months off and get back to it in October. I've been studying continuously since June 2009, haven't even had the summer breaks that most students get!

Anyway, enough of an update, maybe I will get a few more day to day blog posts done in the nearish future - who can tell???

S xx