Tuesday, 8 March 2011

What Have We Been Up To?

We have been busy.

I am trying to enjoy time with the girls before I return to work. I don't know why it feels like I am abandoning them, afterall I am only going back for 25 hours, the majority of which will be while they sleep, blissfully unaware of me grafting up at th'ospital. I guess it is just the end of an era. I'm glad I had time to...

1. Make bird feeders.

We made a 'necklace' out of Cheerios and smeared pine cones with peanut butter, then mashed in some bird seed. I had seen different versions of this on other people's blogs and thought what a cracking thing to do.

As a makeshift feeding station I took a 'lantern hook' from the back garden, Freya was then able to hang her own feeders up.

The finished article. I had printed out a chart of common garden birds such as blackbirds, tits and magpies and we had sat and talked about them. What I should have done was printed out a bloody great picture of a grey squirrel and said 'This is the greedy little bastard that is going to come and smack the bird feeders so all the seed falls off like a pinata.' Freya was in bed when 'Nutkin' came, all that was left swinging was the dilapidated cheerio necklace. It reminded me of Jurassic Park when they lowered the cow into the raptor enclosure and then brought up the sling all mangled and empty. Nature is nature at the end of the day. 

2.We made toast by the fire.

Freya had been unwell for weeks and was eating next to nothing. Mealtimes were starting to become a bit fraught so I thought lets do something different.

What an inspired idea, if I do say so myself. She ate four rounds of toast and a couple of large spoonfulls of strawberry jam straight out of the jar.

She kept saying 'Warm' when I think 'Hot' would have been more appropriate. Her clothes smelled like ironing.

Not a bad way to spend a blustery afternoon.

3. We made fairy cakes.

I say we, she actually put the cases in the tin and licked the beaters but 'She's two' as my friend Liz kept pointing out to Craig and myself on a recent holiday.

Just setting tickin' chicken, our handy kitchen timer. This Charlie and Lola apron only came in child sizes unfortunately.

4. We went to the library.

This is the beautiful building that houses Darwen library, I like to think that the small fortune that I pay in overdue fines helps to keep this place afloat. It has a lovely feel to it. The staff are always friendly and helpful, it has a small gallery for local art and photography and a really nice colourful children's section with big hand painted pictures of Pooh Bear and other characters.

Books have always been important to Craig and I who have both been avid readers in the past. I specifically remember when my love of books started, it was a sponsored read when I was in junior school and I read all of the Willard Price books and just couldn't get enough.

I also had a weird 'comfort blanket thing' which involved reading the Wind in the Willows over and over again at one point. So Freya has always been encouraged to read and seems to have developed into a small bibliophile.

The Booktrust is a government funded scheme that gives children free books and associated gifts. Freya is the proud owner of a Bookstart bag which we carry her book and her own library card to town in. Every time we get a book out she gets a sticker placed on her 'loyalty' card thingy which works towards getting a certificate for her wall. I don't know who is more excited.

I was nearly put to shame last time we went to the library. I was sat down at one of the mini tables reading Meg and Mog to Edie and Hairy McClary (from Donaldson's Dairy) to Freya when a woman bustled in with her two children. She proceeded to unpack all kinds of supplies such as a potty and hand puppets. The children chose their books then gathered round for a puppet show. I was about to leave feeling very inadequate when I decided to strike up a conversation with her. It turns out she was a childminder- ha, thankgod. She has to be 'all singing, all dancing' (literally). Real mothers are far more jaded.

In summary, we have had some fun. The list doesn't include everything such as making Jam tarts with Daddy, walking in the Lakes, planting seeds, riding her trike, making cards and 'helping' with domestic life.

I should remind myself that there have also been crap days and plank rigid wobblers to lessen the blow of returning to work. I also enjoyed returning to work last time, it reminded me who I was, I got to talk about nail polish and other non-child related stuff with like-minded individuals, felt valued again and not forgetting, got PAID. After all, child benefit doesn't really cover buying a new Cath Kidston handbag.

Better go get my uniform ready.

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