Monday 26 July 2021

Me on Monday

 I'm back!

You may have noticed a lack of posts from me last week, as we were on our holiday.  We were SO lucky with the weather, every day dry and sunny, which as we all know, is never guaranteed in England!  In normal times we would have headed off on a plane to some European resort and settled ourselves into a hotel to be waited on with buffet breakfasts, drinks by the pool, having local food for dinner in a restaurant which took our eye as we wandered around and going to bed each night with a very good chance that we would wake again to sunshine the next day.

What we wouldn't have had was 

Beach huts

Quirky little knitted and crocheted covers to post boxes


The opportunity to go crabbing in the harbour

An old fashioned pier

An amazing gelato shop 5 mins walk from our door
(ok, so we may have found this one overseas!)

🌅 🌅 🌅

As you may have guessed, we have had a lovely week away.  A proper old fashioned British seaside holiday.  Southwold is full of character, has a glorious beach, a harbour where you can go crabbing, large green areas on which to fly kites and have freshly caught fish and chips on a picnic blanket for dinner.  We even had a day when Jon and Max came to join us and it was wonderful to see all three grandchildren playing around on the beach.  

It was a week of sunshine, laughter and happy memories.  

I think that today we are all suffering from the post-holiday blues.

Friday 16 July 2021

A new addition

 We have a new member of the family

A friend of ours who has a dreadful phobia of frogs found this little chap in their garden.  Knowing we have our little nature pond now, they offered to let us adopt him.  Actually it was more a case of begging us to take him! He seems to have settled in well and has found his happy place, half in and half out of the watercress plant.

It's become my morning routine to go out after breakfast and see if I can find him.  He's always so well camouflaged in the greenery.  I hope he doesn't miss us too much when we are on holiday!  I am sure he will miss having some weird woman peering into the pond every morning searching for him!

So, our daughter's isolation period is over; she booked herself in for a hair cut and colour and then a manicure appointment and gleefully handed the children over to Daddy to make up for the 10 very long days and nights that she has had them all to herself!  

We have a very suspicious looking dog here at the moment.  I'm sure she knows what those black cases mean when we get them out of the loft.  She'll have a lot of fun with her temporary family but she does have a way of making you feel very guilty.  I'm looking at the weather forecast and it looks as if we may have a dry, warm week ahead so fingers crossed (but of course I will be packing for every eventuality as we all know what a week in England can be like!)

I'm remembering to pack my photo hunt list so that I can hopefully cross a few more categories off.  I always like to find a few things from further afield. 

We are off to friends for pre-holiday drinks later, it's a tradition we started many years ago and a lovely way to start the week off.  I probably ought to be getting those cases zipped up before we go so I don't have to think about that when we get back later. Also once they are zipped, there is no chance of me throwing in one more item of clothing 'just in case'. After all, there's no luggage restriction on a UK break so no reason to travel light!  

Friday 9 July 2021

Always read the small print

 To say that our daughter is finding it tough dealing with being in isolation with two energetic under 5s singlehandedly, whilst trying to also work from home and keep her husband supplied with food, drink and paracetamol is an understatement!  

We promised that they could have Coco come and spend the day with them as a little break from routine and something to look forward to so we dropped her off then came home for a coffee.

A little later Rachel rang 'I've tested positive' she said in a shocked voice.  The company that her husband works for had sent someone to their home yesterday to do a PCR test on her because they knew that his result had been positive from work.  She was surprised because she had a test on Tuesday which was negative and hadn't left the house or spent any time near to her husband since he came home from work that day.  He is quarantining in their play room and their paths have not crossed at all. 

Five minutes later she rang again.  'I'm not positive, I misread it' Phew!  The message said 'If your test result is positive you must report it on the following website ...' in her panic, she only saw 'your test result is positive' not that small but very important word 'IF' and when she read the whole message to the end she saw that it did indeed say 'Your result is negative for the virus'.

There was a brief moment when she thought that she could now mix with her husband and he could help out with the childcare duties but now she knows she definitely has another 6 days coping on her own.  Six long days ...

Wednesday 7 July 2021

The best laid plans ...

 Just like that, the week we thought we had planned changed.

Rachel dropped Rosie off here yesterday morning as normal.  We played for a while and then went to the shops where Rosie fell asleep and had a lovely hour long nap, and then Rachel rang in a state of somewhere between anger and upset.  Her husband had gone into work, had his routine lateral flow test, and was promptly told to leave the building, have a PCR test and go home to isolate as he had tested positive.  

It was a bit of a shock as he had no symptoms at all, and they wondered if it was a false positive but the results are back today from the more accurate test and it confirmed the result.  Also, overnight he has developed symptoms and is now feeling under the weather.  So Rachel had to pick Leo up from school and then get Rosie from us and quickly take them to the nearest testing centre.  It was quite a shock as James works for a medical company and had been double vaccinated for quite some time.  Needless to say he is in the doghouse for bringing home the virus - well actually he's decamped to the playroom where he's set up an office and slept on the sofa! Poor Rachel is left to deal with two under 5s who will be bored and squabbling by lunchtime.

So whatever happens, Leo will miss his last week of school, which includes sports day  - and the Under The Sea day so there will be no photos of his costume which is a shame because it was looking pretty good!  Maybe they'll have a themed day at home instead.  

Then this morning I had an early message from Jon.  Max has woken with suspicious raised spots all over his chest and stomach.  He sent photos and they look distinctly like early chicken pox spots.  So they aren't coming over today just in case! No childminding for me this week.

But this has all got me thinking.  We did lateral flow tests last night which were both negative so at the moment we are ok.  It's only 10 days to our holiday, is it worth us going out to places with the associated risk of being 'pinged' to say that we've been in contact with someone who has reported a positive result?  I'm thinking that it isn't.  Rachel and family will be out of isolation in the nick of time. If we stay close to home apart from dog walks in the countryside from today we would be fine.  I think it's time to cancel my Zumba class and hair cut.   I've just done a BIG Tesco shop for us and Rachel so the cupboards are well stocked.  

What do you think?  Would you stay home in the 10 days leading up to a holiday?  Or are we being over cautious?  

Monday 5 July 2021

Me on Monday

 Lots to celebrate here this weekend.  Saturday was a good day because not only did England beat Ukraine 4-0 in the football but it was also the day that this young 'lady' turned 10.

She spent the day doing all her favourite things, going for walks, sleeping, eating, patrolling the garden, barking at pigeons and the postman ... not to mention getting two new toys and some special chews.  

Paul's art teacher had a stall at an arts and crafts exhibition in a nearby town on Sunday and we came home with a new picture for our lounge.  She's a very talented lady and it's nice to support a local artist.  However ... at 10.30pm last night Paul realised that he couldn't find his wallet anywhere.  We searched high and low, in all the obvious places and then all the ridiculous places that you wouldn't expect him to put his wallet.  After half an hour of searching it was apparent that he has lost it.  Fortunately he only had one credit card in there, his driving licence and a £10 note so it was easy to stop the card.  It hadn't been used and you would think that if it had been stolen someone would have been using it on lots of purchases that only need it to be presented to a hand held device so maybe it is 'just' lost. So his Monday will be starting with calls to the exhibition venue and the coffee shop he went to afterwards.

*** Wallet update ***

Wallet has been found!  In a totally random place, at home.  In between two children's jigsaw boxes in our spare bedroom.  How strange.  Especially as we didn't have the children here after we got back from the art exhibition so there was no reason for Paul, or his wallet, to be any where near the jigsaws.  But anyway - relief all round!


So, where do you find me on this particular Monday?  With a day to myself as Paul is out with a friend.  After his wallet searching calls that is.  They like to explore different places neither of them have been before and today's choice is a village called Clare in Suffolk.  I think it's about an hour's drive from here and although it's a very small village apparently there are some lovely long walks that start and end there.  I suspect that their day will start with a coffee and a hot sausage roll from a local bakery and end with a beer and a sandwich in a pub.  So much for the healthy walk in between the two!

I quite like having a day where I don't actually have anything planned.  I may pop into town to pick up a few bits and pieces for our trip to Southwold.  We need a new picnic blanket as I am sure we will be having a few al fresco lunches, hopefully on the beach.  Our old one is looking a bit tatty, I won it in a raffle many years ago and I think it's time to put it out to retirement!  

I have a feeling that my fancy dress costume making skills may be called into action too.  On Friday Leo has a non uniform day where the theme is 'under the sea'.  I suspect there may be a lot of little girls in mermaid costumes!  Not so easy for a boy though.  He has decided (with a bit of suggestion from his mum) to be a scuba diver.  He is borrowing Paul's snorkel and mask and R will be spray painting some empty water bottles silver to be air tanks but there is the issue of how to attach them to something that will hold them onto his back.  We do have a plan which involves felt, a hot glue gun and the cord from an old backpack, but then there is the issue of flippers to go over his trainers.  Good old Pinterest!  Wish us luck!  

Thursday 1 July 2021

A sentence a day in June

 June has started with warm temperatures and brilliant sunshine and the prospect of more relaxation of rules by the end of the month ...

Day 1 Should have taken Leo and Rosie to the zoo but they succumbed to a sick bug in the early hours of the morning so we ended up taking Max instead.

Day 2 Max came over for the day and discovered that even if you take your bowl of rice cakes into a ball pit, Coco will still try to come in and 'share' them

Also happy to report that the results to my blood test showed that I am positive for antibodies which must mean that the covid vaccination has worked!

Day 3 Zumba at 10, hair appointment at 12, coffee with friends at 2pm - what a lovely busy day 😊

Day 4 After days of sunshine, back came the rain - a lazy day indoors gave me the excuse to crack on with my crochet

Day 5 My sister's 50th wedding anniversary.  Instead of going somewhere exotic to celebrate they have a weekend away in Norfolk!

Day 6 Had Leo and Rosie here to make up for Day 1, their mum and dad headed off for their delayed lunch in Cambridge!

Day 7 Was quite humid today but that didn't mean I couldn't get totally up to date with my ironing #leastfavouritejob

Day 8 Rosie was here today and was so happy to discover that I was wearing a pale blue dress very similar to the one she was wearing, she kept saying 'Nanny, we twins!'

Also played dress up while waiting for their mum to come and collect them.

Day 9 Max came to play for the day and Jon had his first Covid vaccination - it was a hot day today, we tried playing out in the garden but came in after a short while as it was cooler indoors.

Day 10 Zumba in morning, friends came over for coffee and cake in the garden in the afternoon - apparently there was a partial solar eclipse this morning, but too cloudy to see any evidence of it here.

Day 11 Rachel had a big presentation to do for work, so I ended up taking Rosie to Wiggle Wiggle for her dance class; safe to say I was twice the age of the other mums there!

Day 12 Friends came over for dinner - weather was glorious so we were able to eat in the garden - was a lovely evening.

Day 13 More entertaining!  Rachel and Jon both came over for lunch with their families, it was so lovely to see the grandchildren all playing together in the garden.

Day 14 The day we had news about easing of restrictions ... a four week delay - hey ho.

Day 15 Today we had this month's covid and antibody tests, it was also our day for having Rosie but fortunately she was napping when the tester arrived so didn't have to witness Nanny and Grandad stabbing themselves in the finger!

Day 16 Max and his dad came for the day - we look after Max while Jon works from home in our house, it's a combination which works well. 

Day 17 Zumba in the hall was hot, hot, hot.  So humid today, and then the rain came 

Day 18 Rachel and children stayed overnight as James was spending the evening in London watching the football, Rosie and Leo were so excited to be having another sleepover

Day 19 Had friends over for a meal in the evening, haven't seen them since September last year - there was a lot of catching up to do!

Day 20 Father's Day meant that Paul did a lot of relaxing and eating and drinking his favourite things!

Day 21 Had Rosie here for a few hours while Rachel went to the dermatology unit at the hospital. 

Day 22 Our day for having Rosie and Leo, oh how I wish we had their energy.

Day 23 Jon brought Max over for the day, I took him into town to be measured for new shoes and he proudly wore his new red trainers for the rest of the day.

Day 24 Zumba! Also had Rosie in the afternoon as her childminder is still on holiday #comehomesoon #Iamexhausted

Day 25 Went to visit friends who have moved close to the coast, we went early so we could squeeze in a walk along the seafront at Frinton with Coco before we were due there for lunch.  Also went to friends for drinks in the evening, what a busy, sociable day!

Day 26 Spent most of the day tidying up in the garden, things have really grown well this year, all the rain followed by days of sun has obviously worked wonders

Day 27 Rachel, James, Leo and Rosie came for Sunday lunch, did some pond dipping in the garden in the afternoon and discovered that we have lots and lots of baby newts hiding in there.

Day 28 A day of medical appointments - Jon & Sophie had reassuring news at their 21 week baby scan and Rachel had the biopsy carried out on her leg.

Day 29 Had Rosie for the day, Coco went to the groomers and surprise, surprise ...  England v Germany Euro 2020 football match in the evening and ... we won!

Day 30 Had a lovely day with Max then an evening to myself as Paul went to the pub with friends for a delayed football celebration.

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