Tuesday, 22 March 2016

Outside and Inside

We have been blessed with some good weather in these parts, mostly dry with some sunshine too :-)  As a result we have made a good start in the garden and enjoyed some park days in between home school and household chores:

 Spot The Ben Bird ~ a rare breed that only surfaces once in a while and that is usually on a hunt for food ;-)  A sociable creature however that takes a keen interest in supporting those younger than himself.  Most happiest in trees.


Pip has completed both a Singapore maths textbook and workbook in just under three weeks, maths is her favourite subject.  She is also motoring through a series of English textbooks as well as working towards a World Cultures badge for Brownies.

I haven't a thought in my head for writing!  By the end of the day, my intellectual abilities are zippo, so that ebook that I was encouraged to write is well and truly on the back burner.  So, back to the crafting then, apart from the fact that my back and shoulders are mashed and "pain again" is my middle name :-(  Heat packs, analgesics and you tube documentaries are my evening companions these days!

We have been blessed with some lovely family days, managing to see both Kathryn and Mary Grace this past weekend.  Sara and Tom are resident weekend fixtures as they have denoted St Joseph's as their home parish and so make the 40 minute journey each weekend to attend Sunday mass and stop for lunch afterwards.  In fact the past  two weekends they have stopped over and also helped with the gardening.

I have perfected the art of gluten free Yorkshire pudding making and these fluffy concoctions are a welcome addition to the Sunday dinner.  We also enjoyed a vegetable pie on "Pi" day!  Edible maths which was appreciated by all:

We formally made our goodbyes to Aunty Maureen on the 12th of March and I think of her at some point each and every day, whether it be from items purchased by her as gifts, books passed on or the innumerable notes serving double duty as book marks.  She was a prolific note card and post card writer and I am pleased that we have kept some of her jottings. 

We are well and truly in Holy Week.  No tomb garden this year but I am hoping to organise an Easter egg hunt for the kids after church on Sunday.

Hoping to pop by soon and also catch up with you all x 

Tuesday, 8 March 2016

Art and Cooking

In addition to the usual round of daily tasks, both kids had fun in the kitchen.  Benedict made some yummy Glamorgan sausages with salad for lunch and Pip made healthy nut and banana flapjack for after tea:

 Lovely Lunch


 Finished Product

Pip also  enjoyed her impromptu art session this morning.  We used the Usborne art skills book as our guide, the instructions were clear and concise and each project page contained a list of necessary art supplies:

Drawing the outline

 Adding the paint one block at a time

 Pip's finished picture on the top and the book illustration underneath


Sunday, 6 March 2016


A very dear friend and adopted Aunt died yesterday morning in the small hours. 

Both Aunty Maureen and Uncle Bryan have featured in several blog posts here from informal impromptu gatherings, to birthdays, christenings and weddings. What you will not know is that they have been a major part of our lives for seventeen years. 

We met at a series of church events and what followed was an encouragement to deepen our faith and our walk with God.  We learned about the first Friday and Saturday devotions, Our Lady of Fatima, the visionaries of Garabandal and EWTN.  Monday nights were a rosary Cenacle and Friday's, Divine Mercy Prayers.  There was also a retreat day at Holywell shrine in Wales and a pilgrimage to Medugorje, Bosnia Herzegovina.

Aunty Maureen attended my first scan with Benedict and the late pregnancy one when they were worried about a possible health condition.  She always had a set of rosary beads in her pocket and was a prolific prayer warrior.  On the day of Benedict's birth they arrived just after six in the morning and helped with breakfast and the school run for Sara and college for Emma who was due to sit a psychology exam that very morning!  They supported again when I was in labour with Pip and Aunty Maureen's soups kept us going for weeks after the birth :-)

They have prayed us through very difficult health problems from my recent hospital stays to a middle of the night dash when Dave had a grand mal seizure and Benedict was fifteen months old at the time. Their support was invaluable during some turbulent teenage years and the words of encouragement and a listening ear enabled us to weather the storms.

There have been fun times too, elderberry and red currant picking, barbecues and even parking our folding camper on their front drive for a trial run!  We were welcomed into their home fondly referred to as the "club house" the following morning for coffee, porridge and toast.  

Many tears have been shed this past weekend and no doubt they will continue to flow.  I was blessed to spend some time with Aunty Mo just before she died and I know that through her intercessory prayers, I have been blessed in many ways this past weekend.

May Your eternal light truly shine on her Lord and may she rest in peace, Amen.

Tuesday, 1 March 2016

Sometimes it pours

I am sure that I mentioned late last year that Pip had some hearing issues.  We saw the consultant yesterday and he confirmed the original diagnosis of significant hearing loss in both ears :-(. She had moulds made of her ears and  hearing aids will be fitted within the next few weeks.  She has also been referred for extra tests at the hospital since we need to ascertain why she is losing her hearing, so cue blood tests, kidney tests, eye tests and a possible MRI brain scan.  Sometimes the challenges are well, just a bit challenging x