Nephew approaching…

My sister and brother-in-law are expecting a baby boy in May… eek! This weekend was Rebecca’s baby shower, and as such I did a totally mad dash down to Devon so I could be there. 10 hours driving (5 hours each way) for 19 hours of family time, but it was worth it!

I had a Ladies Conference at church on the Saturday morning, which I had committed to doing the decor for months ago, which meant I couldn’t leave Canterbury until 3pm. I got to Mum’s at 8pm, surprising Rebecca, Simeon and Abigail who were all there and who all had ZERO idea that I was coming. My mum has devious stealth secret keeping skills.

The actual shower wasn’t until 3pm on Sunday so I had a chilled out Sunday morning at home – walked the dog in the countryside, it was bright and sunny and WARM (no coat needed!) and then made scones for the party.

We had so much fun… littlest auntie Jessica loved being centre of the attention nd helped with leading all of the games. She is excited about the bay, although woe betide you if you call her Auntie to her face … being an auntie at 6 years old is apparently pretty overwhelming so she has decided to be his “special friend” instead.

This is just a quick post to share some photos… Rebecca’s friend Bethan and our sister Abigail did an amazing job with planning and I think everyone had a really good time, even if the games were a bit mental (toilet paper nappies and baby food tasting, bleh)

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Care, comfort, change, and accomplishments

Hi, and welcome to Spring 2016 at the blog ☺ It’s been a while, again, but I know you* don’t mind. (*Whoever you are)

The first few months of 2016 have been a mixed bag but it’s all on the up now. 2016 is the year I will turn 27 and this has caused no end of consternation in me, the girl who has emotionally been thirty since she was 13 but now seems to have evened out in some strange Benjamin Button-esque manner. The idea of TWENTY SEVEN, looming several months ahead, struck me with a horrible sense of impending doom at the end of last year and I felt a bit like life had strolled past me, leaving me in a monotonous and uninspiring day to day, week to week existence and if I didn’t DO SOMETHING BIG very soon it would all be wasted. (“It” being, I don’t know, life?)

But then.. I had the most amazing restful holiday with my fabulous friends in Oregon and got a little perspective on things. More accurately I had some deep and meaningful discussions with my super brother & sister in Christ and God did the rest… And I realised, I’m ONLY 26…that’s still young! And life can be as exciting or as monotonous as I choose (within reason)

And thus, my 2016 began in Oregon with great passion and plans whilst I was enjoying freezing temperatures, lots of games, dance parties, hikes through the woods, delicious food, open fires and reading Anne of Green Gables to my heart’s content. Best of all were the plentiful cuddles with these beauties!

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Then, back to earth with a bump – I got back to work on the 11th January and discovered Ofsted were coming! Panic! Or not – amazingly I didn’t feel stressed or worried  at all, in fact I was quite floaty and blasé about the whole thing.

The actual week of Ofsted started well and ended outstandingly (wink wink) but the middle of it wasn’t quite so nice, (I’m not going into that though)  and that sparked off what I could only describe as a PTSD setback, if that is such a thing… Let’s just say that on the Friday evening after we heard our feedback I came home, put my pyjamas on and got into bed…and stayed there for the next 18 hours, only getting up for half an hour when our Chinese takeaway came and then going straight back to bed after! 

It took a little while to get my confidence back as it was well and truly battered and I had to spend a lot of time taking care of myself. One thing having PTSD has taught me is that it is vital to take good and proper care of yourself if you have any hope of being able to care for others.

For me, taking care if myself involved creating a calm and peaceful space (with fairy lughts) where I could spend my free time curled up watching Netflix or reading, or sleeping!

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It may seem very self-indulgent, but actually it was very important self-care. I definitely needed rest, emotionally and physically – PTSD is actually so physically draining that just doing a day’s work made me want to sleep for a week! I saw this on Pinterest and I felt it was SO applicable for that time –

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In the midst of it though, there were good new things going on, lots of change and new adventure … And doing some journalling helped me realise that. I’d forgotten the power of writing (hence this sad and neglected blog of mine)

‘But what good new things?’ I hear you ask… Well, let me tell you that I have actually been quite the adventurous social butterfly since January!

I have joined a choir, and I have been doing an aerial yoga class, AND I have joined a new small group! Such excitement and very bold for someone who doesn’t really like change, or meeting new people… 😆

Our choir is very small but steady, and I have really enjoyed the last few months (since January) being able to sing again, learning to read music (but only a little) and I am very proud of myself for being brave and going along in the first place.

I am even more proud of my new aerial yoga skills though! Such a weird and wonderful discipline,; aerial yoga is yoga with a large sling type piece of fabric suspended from the ceiling which supports your weight and enables you to do wonderful acrobatic type things…

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*none of those photos are of me… But thanks though Google*

And the new small group is the biggest change of all, but I think it has been the best. It has been challenging, since I was in the other group for 7-8 years and they are family to me now ..but it has also really helped strengthen my prayer life and relationship with God, and I’m enjoying building new relationships with the people in this group which was something I’d worried I’d struggle with.

So really, there have been good things alongside the bad things and those good things have made the bad things truly bearable. Fortunately the bad is all resolved and I feel so much better having dealt with it with support from management (and colleagues) instead of the condemnation and guilt which I would have faced been in my old job.

Other (additional) good things have been rekindling my interest in personal fitness – with the incentive that my gym membership is expensive and if I don’t go regularly I may as well throw money down the drain, lots of reading on my tablet (although who knew there were ELEVEN stories in the Anne of Green Gables series?! 2500+ pages!! I’m in the 1900s now … Lots of reading.

Also I just had a lovely weekend with Mum, in which we went to see The Railway Children at the beautiful viuntage styled Kings Cross Theatre, ate lots of cakes and scones, had quality 1-1 time…and in which I finally learned to crochet! More accomplishments ☺I was very VERY slow and inept at first but rather than give up (as I have so many times before) I actually kept going and have now achieved a very beautiful blue and white striped blanket for my best friend’s first baby who will arrive imminently. My mum is crocheting enough blankets for a little nephew army, even though my sister is most certainly only having the one child thus time round… But no doubt I’ll make my little nephew something next. 

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Well, there you have it, you’re well and truly caught up on my 2016 as it has been so far. Hopefully the extended absence makes sense now that you know what an exciting life this 26 1\2, year old is leading!!

Until next time…

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