Saturday 30 July 2011

Hide and Freak

When I realised that I was going to use that title for this post I had a feeling that any D-parents reading would immediately have a clear idea what it would be about and had probably experienced it at some point.
It was one of those experiences that so many wonderful bloggers have mentioned before where the true, true reality of your situation really slaps you back in the face.
You have been cruising for a while, getting on with the BG tests, the pump site changes, the lows and highs, the nights and the days and even sometimes daring to feel like you are living a regular life (Ha! Right?!) and then something happens that makes the ground shift, and things fall into a different focus, and reality bites.
Frank and I were at my friend Helen's house for our monthly home ed meeting and the kids, as always, were having a ball racing around together, only calling into the kitchen for snacks and hugs.
They decided to play Hide and Seek.
They do this every time and have fun in Helen's lovely garden, hiding near the chickens or behind the shed.
This time was fine apart from the moment when they all seemed to begin playing another game and I happened to hear one of them mention quietly that they hadn't found Frank yet.
My adrenal glands leapt into action and I felt a kind of little jolt inside me.
I checked again whether they had found Frank yet and they confirmed that they hadn't.
It was 12:15.
Yes, he had had snacks but he had also been racing around lots.
I put my coffee down and headed out to the garden to find him, thinking he'd just hidden somewhere they hadn't yet looked.
I looked everywhere outside.
I called him.
I told him the game had finished and he had won.
I looked inside the house. I called again. I went outside again and called.
Other parents now joined me and called and looked and called again.
Quietly and in my British way I began to panic. I sounded calmer but my friends saw how set my jaw was and how my eyes were darting all around.
The film running through my brain had Frank passed out and fitting.
I welled up, ready to cry.
One of the children mentioned then to his Mum that Frank was "under a table".
We all checked again under all the garden tables and then finally, finally I saw Frank's trouser leg under a side table in the lounge.
He was conscious, and smiling, and wondering why it took everyone so long to find him.
My knees felt weak.
The tears began to come but I managed to sniff them away.
Frank was so pleased he had won the game.
Then Helen said "Are you OK?" and all I could say and feel was "Yes, but scratch the surface and it's always there, always".
And it is, isn't it.
Some days we can feel almost carefree, but scratch the surface ...

Saturday 23 July 2011

Soulemama and me

A while back the lovely Sarah asked me in the comments section what projects I had ever done from Amanda Bake Soule's books and how I found them.
I fully intended to let her know there and then but just didn't get around to it and then um, forgot.
So here , right now, is my reply.
And, Sarah, sorry for the delay!
I have two of Amanda's books : Handmade Home and The Creative Family. They are both fantastic and very inspirational. Amanda really does strike a great and sane balance between the desire to be creative and the reality of making things whilst being surrounded by children and having little time and limited resources.
Some of the issues facing parents who want to craft/create is that they have so little time, even to shop for the stuff for projects. Handmade Home addresses this by emphasising using stuff we already have: old sheets, towels, tea towels, children's clothes that they have grown out of.
The Creative Family is jam-packed with ideas for bringing just a little more creativity into the life of a family. Small steps and introducing some ideas slowly have been great for Frank and I. (Andrew loves the idea of it all but it tends to be me that does this kind of stuff).

Scarf from Handmade Home. Made for Sev's birthday. Hidden behind Frank (he wouldn't leave her side for the photo call!) are some vintage buttons, courtesy of my Great Aunt Dolly.
Wall hanging with pockets for Frank's room from Handmade Home. Made from old blankets and bits of fabric I had at home already. It is hanging from an old curtain pole! And just above it the DREAM banner made from an old army blanket and some felt, also from Handmade Home.

Bunting banner. I have made loads of these, as you all know! They are such a great way of using up old fabric and people love receiving them as gifts.
From the birthday banner idea in The Creative Family.

Bath mat from Handmade Home. This was made from an old pale yellow towel I already had (it is around 25 years old as I remember having it when I was a student!). The floral material is an off cut from some curtains I made years ago and never threw away. Many people have commented on this and asked where I bought it.
Pillow Case dress from Handmade Home. Made for my sister's littlest girl, Nancy.

In all honesty, I have made other things too. I just forget to photograph them!
The Family Heart from Handmade Home has been a great hit with Frank, who puts a piece of my jewellery in its little pocket whenever I go out.
And the Silky Eye Pillow has been made many times as gifts for friends and to use the fab lavender I managed to bag from a friend of a friend's garden last summer.

And Amanda has a new book out next month. I am twitching for it already.
Tomorrow we are running a cycling event to raise awareness of Type 1.
Back soon with photos from that.

Friday 22 July 2011

{ this moment }

A single photo, capturing a moment from the week.
A simple, special, extraordinary moment.
A moment I want to pause, savour and remember.

~ inspired by Amanda at soulemama

Berry picking. Is there a better summer activity for children? I think not.

Sunday 17 July 2011

Look Out, Look Out, There's a Dragon about

One of the reasons for my absence from this space over the past couple of weeks is that I have been beavering away on a dragon costume for Frank for the Colchester Carnival that took place this weekend.
I try hard not to use the computer during the day when I am with Frank so I tend to write in the evening.
Well, over the past two weeks all my evenings have been spent getting ready for Frank's birthday last weekend and for the dragon this weekend.
I am ready for a rest and for a couple of weeks of no deadlines like these!

But it was so very worth it.
Frank had a ball roaring at his friends, most of whom were dressed as knights, and chasing them at speed around the Abbey Fields before the procession set off and he joined his Daddy on the trailer bike.
Andrew had kitted the bike out with a little castle for the dragon to live in complete with windows for him to peep through.
It rained cats and dogs all day.
Downpour after downpour and yet it stopped just for about an hour and a half, and that just happened to be the hour and a half that we were walking through town in the procession. Serendipity indeed.

We have been really struggling to bring his blood sugars down over the past month. We are rarely seeing anything under ten and I am not a happy bunny with this trend.
But, last week we had pump clinic in Cambridge and his HbA1c came back as 7.6.
Holding steady.
Not as high as we thought it might be. We were relieved.
Numbers were crunched at the clinic and we adjusted some ratios and now we try to bring those numbers down.
It is relentless (but I don't have to tell most of you that) and I don't like winning often enough, but hey ho, it is what it is.
I hope to be here more often very soon.
I miss ruminating on life to my small (but, surely adoring) public ... ahem.

Loving all your posts, will find time to comment as soon as I can.
Love to all.

Friday 15 July 2011

{ this moment }

A single photo, capturing a moment from the week.
A simple, special, extraordinary moment.
A moment I want to pause, savour and remember.

~ inspired by Amanda at soulemama

Fuzzy photo as he was a blur of new-found speed.
Such a busy week. Back very soon with more photos and more words.
Sev just arrived! Off to open the champagne!!!

Sunday 10 July 2011


Oh, what a weekend!
My baby turned five on Saturday.
We had a special birthday breakfast of his choosing (pains au chocolat and strawberries on the side) followed by a cycle into town for our Circle-D Colchester diabetes family support group monthly meeting (wow, that's a mouthful).
We then had lunch in a cafe in town and came home to play his new and much requested board game : Monopoly.
He did really well following the rules and we played for ages, only stopping for Frisbee in the garden and then a couple of episodes of original (1969!!) Scooby-Doo; his latest DVD love.
A lovely, family day for my lovely boy.

Friday 8 July 2011

{ this moment }

A single photo ~ capturing a moment from the week.
A simple, special, extraordinary moment.
I moment I want to pause, savour and remember.

~ inspired by Amanda at soulemama

Apple and strawberry crumble for brunch, with Anne and Kaija joining us.
We played Frisbee afterwards.
A good way to start any day.
Apologies for the lack of posts this week but have been busy preparing for someone's birthday. Someone is FIVE tomorrow!

Friday 1 July 2011

{ this moment }

A single photo ~ capturing a moment from the week.
A simple, special, extraordinary moment.
A moment I want to pause, savour and remember.

~ inspired by Amanda at soulemama

The boy who tells me that he doesn't like dressing up wearing his suit from Sudan (his best friend Halim's papa is Sudanese), wellies and Daddy's chainsaw helmet.
Best laugh all week!