The lovely Kelly at A Place of My Own has tagged me, asking me to write about my 5 highlights of last year.
2009 was a good year in our family. No huge revelations or major excitements, but it felt like we finally made it out of the long dark baby tunnel into a new and exciting world of pre-schoolers and school age children. We got out and about, we ventured abroad, and we washed a lot of pants. So, without further ado, my first hightlight is…
Getting enough sleep
Many years ago I was a nanny for a brief period, including caring for a newborn baby boy. He was a ‘good’ baby, who drank his bottles when he was supposed to, slept well and rarely cried. It was a piece of cake. So I thought I knew what I was doing when Eve came along. After about 10 minutes, it became abundantly clear that I was as clueless as every other new mother. Add in a few sleepless nights and I realised that I had been deeply deluded about caring for newborns. Nothing, but nothing, is a piece of cake when you don’t get your full eight hours. I kept thinking, ‘if I could just get four hours, five hours, six hours without being woken, I’ll feel better’. It took me many months to accept that I would never sleep in the same way again and for the six years that I had newborns, teethers, growth spurters and early wakers I stumbled through the days in a fog of scratchy eyes and memory loss. 2009 was different. Gradually, without my noticing, all my children started to regularly sleep through the night and regularly wake at about 7am. I feel different, in a good way.
Starting a blog
After two years of reading other people’s travel blogs, I finally took the plunge in February last year. I have enjoyed it more than I could have ever predicted. It has become an almost daily pleasure, writing, tinkering, thinking about my blog. It’s re-ignited an old love of words and I hope that one day I can do something more with it.
Our first camping trip
I am a fair weather camper. I really, really don’t like being cold or wet and I’m not too good at sleeping on the ground. As we have not been anywhere warm, like Australia, in the last 8 years, the children have never been camping. Until this summer, when we spent a gorgeous, but perishingly cold night in a field in North Yorkshire. We splashed in the stream, built a huge, smoky, eye-stinging campfire, toasted marshmallows and told ghost stories. I hope we can recreate the experience on our trip, but with warmer weather and hammocks.
Last summer we had the most yodellingly fantastic holiday in Switzerland, a country I have always suspected might be right up my street. Every cliched view I had previously held was blissfully right and we spent two weeks enjoying a soundtrack of clanking cow bells whilst hiking through flower-filled meadows, marvelling at the efficiency of their trains, swimming in lakes with picture postcard backdrops and eating a Matterhorn of cheese and chocolate. For a rash of posts and some gorgeous photos (if I do say so myself) click on Switzerland in the category cloud on the right.
2009 was the year I learnt how to catch a crab. Goodness knows how I’ve survived so long without this knowledge, but I now feel confident in any crab catching situation. It was a lot of fun.