Saturday, 29 November 2008

We have water!!

Well it's Saturday night, Tom's having a boy's night out with the men from church & I've just had a lovely, relaxing, peaceful bath... alone, what bliss!!! I think I've forgotten how to have a bath without a toddler in with me or begging to get in. I didn't quite know what to do so now I'm sat in the living room with the fire on, in my comfiest pyjamas, blogging while I wait for the X-Factor results show to start (wild, I know).

So, you'll have gathered by now that we have water again!!! We finally got switched back on at lunchtime yesterday after more than 36 hours!!!!!  It was ridiculous. It would have been amusing if it wasn't so stressful. After speaking to the water company 9 times they finally got an inspector out. Unfortunately, they sent an absolute idiot who was rude & patronising.  Firstly he told me it was sorted, apparently the supply had been switched off outside, but when he came inside... still no water. He reached under the sink turned the stop-tap & lo & behold the water was back. In his most patronising voice he informed me that it was no surprise we had no water if we'd switched off the stop-tap! I assured him we had done no such thing. Who would do that? There was some terrible noises coming from the pipe & he rushed upstairs telling me whatever I had left on sounded like it was going to flood the place (again he wouldn't listen when I told him nothing was on upstairs). 

The longer he was in my house the more irritated I was getting. I didn't believe a word he was saying because I knew neither Tom or I had switched off this tap plus my pipes sounded like they were gonna burst.  I had also had a call from the water company telling me my neighbour had reported the same problem so I knew it couldn't be caused by the tap under my sink.  He was so arrogant & unhelpful & at one point even said to me (with a smirk on his face) "it's ok to admit you turned off the stop-tap... You won't get in trouble... It was just a mistake!!" Honestly? I wanted to hit him. For about the 7th time I told him I DID NOT TURN OFF THAT TAP!!!!!

To cut a very long story short (thank goodness I hear you say) we have 2 stop-taps & 2 pipes (there should only be one of each) so all this guy did was turn on the disused tap (which he'd have seen if he'd actually looked properly). The gas man (who was doing a safety check) sorted the 2 taps (turned off the disused one again), the noises went away & I was a happier bunny.

The saga continued that evening when another inspector turned up to investigate why half our terrace are without water.  Apparently there's been a leak further up the street in one of the empty houses & all of us below are now without water (we all share a pipe that goes under the houses). When I told him we now had water he looked very confused. I showed him the outside mains supply that had been turned off & explained the whole tap drama. He asked to come in & check if we really had water (apparently my say-so & Rebekah being in the bath wasn't enough evidence). 

It turns out that the reason we have 2 pipes & taps is because sometime in the past, whoever lived here got a private water supply, from the mains, installed for situations like this. So while half the terrace is without water we thankfully have this supply none of us knew about. Crazy eh? I am so thankful for this because the water company are unable to do anything about the leak because it is in a private property & not a problem with the mains supply so we could've been without water for a lot longer!!! What a blessing this extra tap & pipe turned out to be!!!

Well, it's getting late so I'm off to bed now. Goodnight!

Friday, 28 November 2008

Still no water...

Well it's been 36hours now & we still have no running water!! I think it's a disgrace, not to mention seriously stressful!!!
I had a terrible morning yesterday! After I blogged I was putting the ironing board away when the iron decided to take a nose-dive off the top shelf of the cupboard under the stairs onto my foot... point down!!!!! It hurt soooo bad. It's ok now, just very bruised & swollen. Poor Rebekah... I couldn't stop crying & I think she was terrified. Once we'd got over that little hurdle I spent most of the rest of the morning on the phone to the water company. The people on the phone are very nice but I'm getting past the point of caring now.  I've told them I'm pregnant & I have a 21month old but still no water. One of my friends emailed me yesterday & told me to speak to my MP (or at least threaten it). Thankfully, one of my dear friends Leanne (who was visiting from Scotland) brought us a couple of bottles of water round.

The crazy thing was, I couldn't leave the house as they promised someone was coming to fix it so we had nothing to drink except full fat milk!!  By the time I got to the hospital for my antenatal appt I was severely dehydrated!! I had 4+ ketones & had to answer all manner of questions about diabetes, headaches, was I feeling well etc. Of course I didn't feel well & I had a headache which I knew was caused by being dehydrated. The midwife mentioned (half joking) about needing to have a drip but I promised I would drink lots, assured her not to worry & promised to check my ketones before I went home (I was about to start work). The problem when you're 'high risk' & have high blood pressure, having a headache twitches my midwives & triggers a whole load of new questions.

Thankfully I have a wonderful & reasonable consultant, who, after asking what was going on, why I was so ketotic, let me I explained the water saga, she left it & moved onto the real reason I was there... My blood pressure, which, by the way, was great!! I was kind of expecting it to be high given the morning I'd had but I prayed & He delivered. She even agreed that as long as I have my bp checked each week, & let them know if it misbehaves (which I trust it won't) I don't have to go back for 3 whole weeks!!!!! I'm so excited. When you've been at the hospital or the midwife 10 times in 6 weeks a 3 week break makes all the difference.  Poor Rebekah... She gets dragged to 'Mummy's work' for all my appointments (which she actually likes because she gets so much attention) and yesterday when I told her I had to go to work she pointed at my tummy & said "baby?".  What a clever girl!!

Anyway, breakfast calls & I'm waiting for the complaints dept. at the water company to call me back so I'll go. I'll update later.

Thursday, 27 November 2008

No water!!

I am getting slack at this blogging lark. I started a post on Tuesday but then Rebekah got up & then to be honest, I spent all my internet time yesterday looking at new cloth nappies, or on the cloth nappy board at baby centre.  They had a raffle yesterday to raise money in memory of one of their babies who, tragically recently died, after being born prematurely. The money raised was split between SANDS (Stillbirth & Neonatal Death Society) & the local NICU where she was cared for. A lot of money was raised which is brilliant & I know Phoebe's Mum was very pleased.  I didn't win anything... hey ho. But, as Tom said "it's not the winning that's important it's the taking part that counts."  It still would've been nice to win a little something ;)

I woke up this morning & we have no water!!!! Tom rang to let me know he couldn't have a proper wash. I hadn't realised 'til then. Thankfully I was able to flush & rinse a soiled nappy but now I can't flush the toilet, have a shower, make a drink, the list goes on. I've rung the local water company they have no idea what's happened so someone's meant to be coming out this morning to sort it out. I hope so!! In the meantime Rebekah & I will have to stay inside & miss our toddler group this morning & hope it's sorted before I have to go to work later!!  There was some strange banging last night (we couldn't work out where from) for nearly 2hrs so I don't know if that's anything to do with it.

Anyway, I better go & play with Rebekah. Just wanted to write a quick post. Hope you're all ok!

Sunday, 23 November 2008

Sunday night feeling :( & random thoughts

It's Sunday evening & I'm working tomorrow so I've got that Sunday evening feeling. You know the one where you've had a great weekend & you know it's nearly over & work is looming. It's funny, I haven't worked on a Monday since January 2007 so I'd almost forgotten that feeling. I'm on a long day tomorrow so the thought of  a 14hr shift... Hopefully it'll fly by. To be fair it's not usually that bad. I'm back on the ward & I really enjoy it. It's busy but I like it.  I was meant to be working on the delivery unit until January but because of my blood pressure I've been moved so I'm kinda slotting into the off duty where they're short.

I've enjoyed this week. I've had a week's holiday. I know, if you're a regular reader of this blog you're probably thinking "but you've only just gone back to work!!". This weeks holiday was booked ages ago, before I was even pregnant. It's been a pretty chilled week. I've enjoyed not having to go to the hospital to see the Dr or have my blood pressure checked (they agreed to see me in a fortnight instead of weekly).  I've still had to have my BP checked but I was able to go to the Community Midwife (CMW) who is only a 5min walk away instead of 2 bus journeys there & back.

 I went shopping on Friday & bought some new maternity clothes with some vouchers I got for my birthday. I love shopping but even more when I don't have to even spend anything. I got a lovely pair of pants and a jumper. I LOVE maternity clothes! I don't know why. For a start they are super comfy plus you don't have to worry whether or not you look fat in them cos let's face it... us pregnant ladies are gonna get big.  I carry most of my weight around my tummy anyway so it's a relief to not have to worry about trying to hide or disguise my belly. Ha ha.

Friday night was our "girls night' at church. We had a lovely time. We walked around the Christmas markets in town then went for dessert.  It was nice to hang out & chat with girls who I don't always get a lot of time with & nice to hang out with my 'Mummy' friends without babies or toddlers in tow.

This week Rebekah went back into cloth nappies.  After a little break (morning sickness & poo weren't going well together) I'd got out of the habit of using them but after yet another bout of nappy rash we're using them again.  Rebekah has hardly ever had nappy rash. She didn't get in when she used to wear disposables & she didn't get it in cloth but since she's gone back into disposables she's had it a few times!! I can't work out why. Maybe it's because her bum got used to being chemical free & now it doesn't like the chemicals in the 'sposies.  I only converted to cloth this summer after reading MckMamas post on cloth diapering. I researched what she'd said further, was horrified & ordered my first cloth nappies pretty quickly. I was surprised at how much I liked them, & how relatively easy they are. Not to mention cute & totally addictive!!!!

Rebekah's off having her bath now. It's one of her favourite things.  It's her & Tom's 'daddy/daughter time' so it's special to both of them. She's always loved her bath. Even as a newborn she has always been very relaxed in the bath. I wonder if it's because I loved having a relaxing bath when I was pregnant, splashing the water onto my tummy & I'd always sing & talk to her.  I'd put on my favourite cd, sing along and talk to the daughter I was yet to meet. Tom asked me a couple of weeks ago if I talk to 'the bump' as much as I talked to Rebekah.  It's a good question. I told him I always used my bath time to spend quality time talking to Rebekah & now, if/when I have a bath (it's usually a quick shower these days) I still talk to Rebekah!! Lately she always want to get in with me so while I lie back & try to relax she sits with me & plays. So now, so 'the bump' gets quality time with me & his/her big sister. We both talk to my tummy & now, instead of Mummy singing her favourite tunes 'the bump' listens to various renditions of 'Old MacDonald, Wheels on the Bus, or My God is so Big'!!  Oh & not to mention Rebekah kissing 'baby' through my tummy every few minutes.  This baby may not get as much one-to-one time as Rebekah had but it is loved just as much by it's Mummy & Daddy has the privilege of a very loving big sister who can't wait to meet him/her!!! I can't believe how quickly this pregnancy is going. I'll be 17wks on Tuesday!! Crazy! At this rate it'll be May before I know it!

Friday, 21 November 2008

Things that go bump in the night.

Last night was a noisy night in our house & I am feeling sleep deprived today.

It started just before Tom & I were about to go to bed (while I was writing my last post actually). A police car chase went through the alleyway behind our house. For those of you not privileged enough to have experienced one of these I will explain. It starts with a loud distant rumble & within seconds a car flies behind your house. Seconds later the police car follows with sirens wailing & blue lights flashing. Our house is a traditional Manchester terrace (just like in Coronation Street) The houses are very close to each other and rather than backing onto each other they are separated by a narrow alley (just wide enough for a car to drive down). Every 10-15 houses are separated by another alley.  Anyway, so, Tom & I were chatting when we heard this noise. I said "what was that?" quickly followed by both of us saying "oh... joyriders" in a knowing tone... followed again by "car chase" again, in unison. About 5-10 minutes later we heard the all too familiar police helicopter circling above & we smiled at each other knowing that the chase had been unsuccessful.  You may think I sound blase about this but it's a fairly common occurrence happening every couple of months. The helicopters are out far more often probably fortnightly. It's a pretty normal part of life in Openshaw. I've explained in earlier posts why we're here & I know some of you are probably wondering why we chose to live here, especially now we have children. That answer is a post of it's own which I will tackle one day soon.

Back to our noisy night...

We went off to bed when the helicopters stopped but were woken a few hours later by a loud bang. For the second time that night I said "what was that?" Tom didn't say anything but got up to go and investigate.  He couldn't see anything untoward downstairs so after we'd both had a nosey out the bathroom window we decided it must have been a cat & went back to bed. 

Anyway, about an hour ago the police knocked on my door asking if I'd heard anything strange last night. I told them the story & apparently the lady next door has reported a break-in.  It could be the answer to the mystery noise but the police don't believe her!!! They think she's faked it & kicked the door in herself. Tom's with the police. We hear EVERYTHING from next door & if someone had broken in he says we'd have heard more than one bang. There were no screams, no footsteps, no sounds of stuff being taken, so it remains a mystery.  As Tom pointed out, someone who is bold enough to break into a house while people are inside won't try to be quiet once he's inside so who knows.  As usual we were woken a few hours later when the family next door got up for school (I told you we hear everything) but other than that, it's been pretty quiet since.

Thursday, 20 November 2008

Family, new shoes & praying

I can't believe it's been 3 days AGAIN since I last posted!!!! Whats happening? I've gone from blogging everyday to every 3days!!! I need to sort myself out.  I've either been out during nap time or slept myself.

Yesterday Rebekah, my sister-in-law Nicci & I went to see one our other sister-in-laws Esther & her daughter Hannah. Hannah is 5 months older than Rebekah so it's lovely for them to grow up together. Esther is expecting her second baby in 2 weeks so yet again we're having babies close together. Esther is Tom's older sister & we lived together before we were both married so it's great fun doing the Mummy thing together too.  They have a BEAUTIFUL home so it's always a nice relaxing day. It was a lovely treat to have Nicci with us too. Rebekah loves her Auntie Nicci. When I told her we were going to meet Nicci she said "bye Mummy". I tried to explain I wasn't going anywhere but I think she just wanted some time with her auntie. We are very blessed to have Tom's 2 brothers (and their wives) within a 5 minute walk so we see them a lot.

Rebekah got new shoes today. She didn't want me to put her shoes on yesterday so I figured it was time to get her feet measured again. Sure enough they'd grown so it was time to shell out a small fortune for new shoes. Her shoes cost more than mine!! All worth it for her feet to grow properly though. Anyway, I chose 2 pairs I liked & Rebekah had to try them on. I think she liked the first pair the best (purple, metallic, patent shoes with small leather flowers) and they were very pretty but I decided not practical for a toddler so we took them off & tried to get her to try on the second pair (brown with pink leather flowers). They're cute but not as pretty & Rebekah wasn't having it. She ran away from the lady, giggling as she ran around the shop. The lady was trying everything under the sun but no avail so after a stern word from Mummy Rebekah gave in. I couldn't understand why she was making such a fuss. She kept saying they hurt but I got her to walk around anyway (unsympathetic Mummy). After she started whimpering I took them off only to find the lady had left the tissue paper in the toe of the shoe!!! No wonder it hurt. After that it took us twice as long to get her to put them on again. In the end she left with her shoes on & very proud.

She must have liked them because she couldn't wait to show them to Tom when he got home! In fact they also got mentioned twice in her bedtime prayer (along with her new buggy)! Her prayer tonight was the longest & cutest prayer I've ever heard. As I've mentioned before, we all pray together before Rebekah goes to bed. Her prayer is usually 1 or 2 words at the most followed by 'amen'. Not tonight. Tom was at church so after I prayed Rebekah had her turn. She went on & on & on. I couldn't understand most of it but it went something like this (I'll use dots for the bits I couldn't understand) ... Daddy & Beka... Daddy go home... shoes... Beka... Daddy... shoes... Mummy... buggy... shoes... Daddy... buggy. Every time I opened my eyes she clasped her hands back together & just carried on.  It was beautiful and yet SO funny. I had to stop myself from laughing.  The cynical side of me thinks she was stalling bedtime but the other side of me was beaming inside (even if I only got 1 mention).

Anyway Tom's just got home & it's late so I better go. Hope you're all ok. I'll try to blog sooner this time!

Monday, 17 November 2008

Not me monday!!!!!

It's that time again... Not me Monday. The things that us imperfect people never do. MckMama started this on her blog so after you've read my post head over there to check out the other 'Not me Mondays' 

This weeks after being at work all day on Friday & not seeing Rebekah all day I was NOT secretly pleased when she woke up and I was NOT excited to have a warm sleepy cuddle with my baby girl. When she was wide awake I was NOT glad Tom brought her into our room so we could all have a little midnight play together before we went back to sleep. I did NOT do these things because I am NOT so selfish that I put my needs before my daughters sleep.

Oh & I was NOT even happier the next morning when she slept 'til 9am after her midnight playtime. I definitely NOT glad of the lie-in.

Earlier in the week I did NOT put a DVD on downstairs, put Rebekah in front of it just so I could go and have a shower on my own without a toddler stood at the side of the bath trying to get in & giving me a running commentary of each body part as I wash it. I did NOT do this because I would never use a DVD as a babysitter just so I could have some peace & quiet for 10mins.

I did NOT sit down last night & eat a load of ice-cream straight from the tub & tell myself it was ok because dairy is good for the baby & I need the calcium from a tub of ice-cream. That would make me a pig so I certainly did NOT do that.

If you want some free therapy of your own leave me a comment with some of the things you have NOT done this week then click on the button & the top of this post & head to MckMama's blog to read some of the things other bloggers have NOT done this week

Sunday, 16 November 2008

Supper Club (& a brief catch up first)

Well it's been a busy few days & I can't believe I haven't blogged since Thursday!! Between working Friday & Sunday (which actually were both pretty good shifts) & a family day out on Saturday I just haven't had the time or the energy.

On Saturday we went to The Baby Show as a family. I really enjoyed myself & we even bought a new double buggy. Tom had taken quite a bit of persuasion to go as he thought we were just paying to go shopping. He doesn't really like shopping at the best of times.  So after a lot of persuading off we went. Since before I was even pregnant I knew which buggy I wanted so even though it's expensive, when I saw it with a HUGE discount we snapped it up. It's the Phil & Teds sport so we'll be able to start using it straight away for Rebekah then convert it to a double when baby arrives. It's perfect because I use public transport or walk everywhere I need something fairly small. Check it out here. We got it in red.

At our church we have recently started a 'Supper Club' on a Sunday evening.  The church is opened up for some of the local homeless people or anyone who needs a hot meal.  The food is cooked by various members of the church & it's another opportunity to reach out to the local community. Last night I helped out & I wanted to share what happened.

I didn't really know what to expect when I went last night. It was only the second week so only a few people have been coming. I expected to just go down, help serve food, eat dinner with the people who came, clear up & go home. What I wasn't expecting was the emotional response that went on inside myself.

I was talking to a guy from our church who has recently come out of a christian drug & alcohol rehab program. He & his girlfriend have been coming to our church for a few months now & we were just chatting and sharing our experiences of addiction when the first men arrived for dinner. I have never personally struggled with addiction but I have experienced it first hand through my Dad & my ex-boyfriend.  For those of you who have ever loved someone who is struggling with addictions you will know how hard it is to watch that person damage themselves and those that love them & there is nothing you can do.  The lies & deceit, being constantly let down, not being able to trust the person you love the most is indescribable & I can honestly say that my experiences with my Dad & my ex have been the most painful times  in my whole life. Even as I sit & write this I feel physically sick remembering some of those feelings.  But thankfully I serve a God who can break the chains of addiction and bring healing, which he has done & now all those sad memories & feelings live in the past.  Without Him I don't know how I'd have got through those times. 

Anyway, as  we were chatting these men arrived for their dinner. One was so drunk he could hardly walk so the other led his friend to the table & they sat down.  I don't know whether it was talking about my past or being pregnant but within a few minutes of these men arriving I felt like I had to get out of there!  There was no feeling of compassion or love for these men I just felt sick & scared. I thought I was going to break down & cry in the middle of the hall.  It was like being in a room with my Dad when he was at his very worst. Homeless, smelly & very drunk. The smell of these men took me straight back about 10years & I did not like it or think I could handle it.  My Dad is thankfully not totally like this anymore.  He is not homeless &  although he is still an alcoholic  I do not see have to see him that way. One of the things that I respect most about my Dad is that when he comes to visit me & Rebekah he doesn't drink. He has told me before that he stops drinking the day before.  It means a lot to me as I have no intention of ever letting my children see him the way I used to have to.  We see him every couple of months.

I was not expecting any kind of reaction like that & I was shocked. As I said before I have no idea what caused it & when Tom & I were talking about it later we couldn't work it out. I've worked with homeless, alcoholics in the past & it's never bothered me but last night...

I managed to get over it pretty quickly & by the time we'd served the food I went over & joined them at their table to eat with them & it was fine & I even enjoyed myself. I guess I learnt that however healed your heart has been there are still things that can trigger old feelings & emotions.  It's not necessarily a bad thing. After all it is often our experiences that help to shape us.  You just need to pick yourself up, keep your eyes firmly fixed on Jesus & not dwell on them or give them a foothold again.

On lighter note if MckMama does a link for 'Not me Monday' I will post again later, otherwise I'll be back tomorrow!

Thursday, 13 November 2008

Back to work tomorrow & hospital appointment

I've just put Rebekah to bed & I'm come downstairs an emotional wreck!! I won't see her now 'til Saturday morning & I'm bawling my head off!!! Tom's out helping at the youth club at the church so the blog gets it!! I know I'm probably over-reacting but I'm pregnant so I'm allowed right?

I'm back to work tomorrow after 6 weeks off. I've had 2 weeks holiday, 2 weeks sick & 2 weeks either side of the sick time where my shifts have been at the end of the week so it's amounted to some pretty good quality time with my precious girl.  I think that's why I'm so emotional. I'm going to miss her so much! I know it's only 36hrs but it feels like a life time & I worry what she'll do without her mummy. I'm more upset than when I first went back to work in February!!! I know she'll be fine in reality. After all she's managed the last 8 months while I've been at work. Plus she loves spending time with her Granny.  
Tom's Mum comes & looks after her once a week which is a Godsend. I love the fact that Rebekah is looked after by family & it gives her a special bond with her Granny. I work 2 days a week & the other day Tom looks after her. I just wish I didn't work at all. Bring on the maternity leave (only 4 months away).  I think what also makes it hard is because she has changed so much in the last 6 weeks. She's talking now but any of you who've had toddlers will know that when they first start talking it's usually only Mummy who understands at first so Granny will have an interesting day. I'm sure she'll figure it out ;).

The good news is I went to the hospital today & my blood pressure was pretty good, so everyone's happy. The other good news is I don't have to go back for 2 weeks. After going in weekly for the last few weeks I'm really glad. I still have to have my BP checked next week but I can go to the community midwife for that.  Rebekah will probably miss our weekly trips. She loves it!! Because I work there she gets loads of attention when we're there and they all know her by name now.  The last couple of visits she's cried when it's time to go! I wish I felt like that! Maybe she could go & do my 14hr shift tomorrow!! Hee hee.

Well I better go but I'll let you know how it goes at work tomorrow. There's been a lot of changes while I've been off so I think I'm probably a bit nervous too which doesn't help my emotions. Hey ho. I'm sure it'll be fine. 

Wednesday, 12 November 2008

Wordless Wednsday...

It's a beautiful autumn day today so Rebekah & I went to our local park. Here are a few pictures from our morning.

The 'big' swings...

Enjoying the see-saw...

Fun on the swings...

Climbing carefully...

Look at the concentration...

I made it!... Pondering her acomplishment...
before sliding down!

Rebekah loved this cat & I loved the colours

Monday, 10 November 2008


I am VERY excited about this post. As I've mentioned before I've been reading MckMama's blog for a few months now & for the last couple of months I've only been able to read other peoples 'not me Monday' posts & not post my own. Last week I was gutted that she didn't do it... Ok, she had just had a baby. Anyway, after you've read my post head over to MckMama's blog where you will find a whole lot more amusing stories which are probably a lot funnier than mine but I did warn you when I started this blog that I don't lead the most exciting life.  I should probably explain 'not me Monday'. It is a list of things I have 'not' done. As MckMama says..."being brutally honest & living to tell about it". So... here goes.

Last week when Rebekah was ill we did not both spend a whole day in our pyjama's without a shower or a wash. Of course I didn't do that... It'd be lazy & gross.

I did not, on said pyjama day, realise I needed to go to the shop so throw a coat & blanket over Rebekah's pj's, put a pair of pants over mine, zip my coat right up over the top & sneak out to the shop hoping nobody would see us. Then when I got to the shop I definitely did not TOTALLY FORGET I had my pj's on & unzip my coat to get money out of my pants thus exposing my pj's to the shop!!!  I definitely did not to that because that would be beyond embarrassing. After shaming myself in front of the whole shop I did not then make a very quick exit with my coat safely zipped back up!!!

Tonight, I did not just feed Rebekah toast, with Marmite on it, & a pile of grated cheese for her dinner because that's what she wanted & I didn't have the energy to a) make anything else or b) argue with her. I did not do this because that would make me a bad mother who doesn't care about giving her child a well balanced meal, and I am not that mother!!

I also am not going to totally blame all this on the fact I'm pregnant. That would just be using my unborn child to evade responsibility & I'd never do that!

I hope you enjoyed my 1st 'not me Monday' post. I must go now & make more mistakes so you can have a little giggle at my expense next week too! Remember to go check out some other posts on MckMama's blog

Sunday, 9 November 2008


I just wanted to share something quickly before I go to bed...
From Friday evening 'til yesterday afternoon I had a pounding headache. Sounds like a pretty normal thing, I'm sure some of you are thinking. Not in my world when I'm pregnant. I don't usually get headaches anyway & when I get them in pregnancy it usually only means one thing... My blood pressure is up!!

 I couldn't face a trip to the hospital so I drank lots of water (in case it was dehydration) took some paracetamol (Tylenol) and hoped for the best. If it cleared, no trip to the hospital, if not... I'd need to go in to get checked over. I hate going in, I always worry I might be wasting their time & as I work there I know how busy it is. 

Anyway, thankfully it cleared but while I waited for the paracetamol to work I realised I don't actually know what I'd do if my BP had gone up & I needed more medication. I would be so shocked. I realised then, that I am totally relying on having an identical pregnancy to last time. I am trusting  that God will make everything run smoothly now 'til the end, He will look after us like He did with Rebekah. This may sound great but if I am completely honest I'm not sure it is real trust. A total lay myself at the foot of the cross/relinquish all control trust. I just believe it because the alternative doesn't bare thinking about & I'm not sure I can handle it.

This is actually a scary place to be & I would feel a lot safer if I just jumped head first into His hands and fully relied on Him. He is after all the Great Physician. I know all of this in my head but boy is it hard to practice in my heart! I know how he looked after me last time but at the beginning of this pregnancy when I was worried my BP might go up, everyone said "you'll be fine... look what happened last time... you have such a testimony" etc I secretly worried... "what if he doesn't choose to do the same again?" I have learnt through personal experience and reading some of the other blogs that although I serve an AWESOME GOD who has saved me & loves me, that bad things happen!!! He doesn't always do things the way we want. I know He can heal me, I know He has raised the dead to life but I also know He doesn't have to.

 So... where does that leave me? Well... it leaves me no choice but to leap, head-first into His hands and rest in my Fathers arms. Fully rely on Him & spend a lot more time in His presence, His word, relinquish all control to Him & learn to completely trust Him with my life & my health. Then, no matter what happens I will know He will carry me through the easy & hard times.  I will not be alone.

When I shared all this with a wonderful christian colleague of mine (who, by the way, is totally unaware of what a blessing she is to me!!!) she gave me a verse which I will leave you with & totally sums up how I feel/what I need. For, I have no other choice...  

"May the God of hope fill you with all joy & peace as you trust in Him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit". Romans 15:13

Saturday, 8 November 2008

7x7 prayer

I was reading Angies blog, 'Bring the Rain', this evening and came across this awesome post. 
She challenges us to pray regularly for our children which is something, I'm ashamed to say, I don't do enough. We do pray with Rebekah every night before bed and if we ever forget she will remind us. She seems to love this time praying all together and has even started to say her own prayer. We haven't got a clue what she says (we think it might be 'Thank you, amen') but it doesn't matter because God knows and that's what matters.

Anyway, as usual I have digressed, so now back to Angie's 7x7 prayers. I have tried to copy and past part of her post (I hoped she wouldn't mind) as it has totally inspired me & I hope it will inspire some of you too!!  Unfortunately for some reason it hasn't worked so PLEASE  check it out yourselves (the rest of Angie's story is pretty amazing too)!! Just click on the 7x7 prayer button on the right hand side of my blog. 

Let me know what you think!

Ramblings updated

After re-reading my last post I realised I probably needed to clarify a couple of things. When I said that being selfish and looking after a newborn are impossible I didn't mean that I'm never selfish. I can be incredibly selfish but when Rebekah was born it was not an option. Newborns are totally reliant on their parents to look after them. When Rebekah was hungry, had a dirty nappy, trapped wind, or just needed a cuddle, I couldn't ignore her because I wanted to do something else. I had to just tend to her needs. 

This honestly didn't feel like a sacrifice.  I was so in love with my baby I couldn't think of anything I'd rather do than hang out with her & Tom or do things.  I got far more enjoyment in buying little things for her than for myself.  I love buying presents anyway so I think that's probably one of my 'love languages'. 

I loved that when she was hungry I was the only one that could feed her. I used to say I'd express milk and Tom could feed her but we only did that once. Tom never felt that he needed to feed her, he has always given her a bath every day and there are always nappies to change so there was plenty to keep him involved. When I offered to express so he could feed her he kindly said "no, thank you". He always said he knew I was happy to express for him but he also said he knew how special it was to me to feed her & he didn't want to take that way from me. Both Rebekah & I loved breastfeeding (in fact she only self-weaned in the last month). It was such a precious time. Yes, she always wanted feeding the moment Tom finished making our dinner, but, after eating a few cold dinners I learnt to feed & eat at the same time (not much comes between me & my food!). It also meant I couldn't go out before she went to bed & I always had to make sure I was back before she'd wake for her next feed but in the scheme of things it's not really much of a sacrifice & it probably only lasted a year. After months of breastfeeding, Rebekah wouldn't take a bottle anyway so it wasn't an option. Why have a bottle of breastmilk when you can have it direct eh?

After 20 months I admit that there are plenty of times where I think how much I'd like a day to just do what I like. Sleep late, read all day, watch what I want on tv, go shopping on my own, eat when I like and not have to think about nap time, meal times, healthy meals etc but I can't. As much as the selfish part of me would like to just be selfish this is not an option. At the end of the day I am a Mother first and Rebekah & the 'bump's' needs have to come first.

Tom was listening to a sermon this week on parenting by Ted Tripp and he was saying (this is somewhat paraphrased) that your children are only young for a small percentage of your life so aren't they worth laying down/sacrificing your hobbies etc to commit to spending time with your family? This is not to say that you can never take time for yourself but you can not expect to spend a lot of time doing things you like when you have a young family. When your kids are grown up there will be plenty of time for that.

Sorry, this update has become more of another ramble rather that an update but I hope I've managed to get my feelings across and you understand what I meant. I am definitely better at expressing myself by talking (which I do a lot of) than writing.

Friday, 7 November 2008

Ramblings about motherhood & Rebekah

As the title suggests, this post is pretty much just going be about  motherhood & Rebekah. If you don't like parents who gush about how wonderful their kids are then this definitely won't be for you! There will probably be a bit of brutal honesty in it too!!

I never realised how much being a mother would change me until I became one. When I got married people told be how marriage identifies how selfish you are but motherhood identifies a whole set of flaws that have been hiding in the back of the closet for goodness knows how long!! Selfishness is not one of them though because I don't think it's possible to be selfish & care for a newborn!! You'd be in big trouble if you tried that!! I have however, learnt what a short temper I have. Whether it's snapping at Tom unnecessarily or over-reacting when looking after Rebekah, it's horrible and I don't like it at all!! I also worry in a way I never did before. From the moment I found out I was pregnant I have worried about Rebekah. Not in an abnormal way ( I wouldn't describe myself as a worrier) but in a protective, maternal way I guess (if you spoke to Tom he might have a different perspective... I think neurotic might spring to mind. Hee hee) I think having been a gynae nurse & now working as a midwife didn't help with the normal pregnancy anxiety. I know far too much about what can go wrong in pregnancy. Gynae gave me a totally unrealistic view on early pregnancy & it's various complications & midwifery... Well lets just say that working in a specialist high-risk unit like I do doesn't help one focus on 'normal' pregnancy.

Unfortunately from 12weeks, 'normal' was not a term used to describe me & overnight I became 'high-risk'. For those of you who don't know me, I developed very high blood pressure (bp) when I was 12 weeks pregnant with Rebekah (and history has repeated itself in this pregnancy). I was started on medication immediately and was very closely monitored. This scared the life out of me. I was terrified I was getting pre-eclampsia & had visions of 'crash sections' (emergency cesarean) at a hideously early gestation.  I had to constantly remind myself to be rational and to trust God.  Many people were praying for me & as I mentioned in an earlier post I was able to come off medication for most of the 2nd half of my pregnancy (which is totally abnormal as in pregnancy, blood pressure usually rises from 20 weeks not falls). This was a total answer to my prayers. I remember when I first became ill one of my friends asked me specifically what she could pray for & I said "please pray that I won't have to take these drugs for the rest of my pregnancy". I hated the idea of my baby being pumped with drugs & I wanted more than anything to come off them. She, herself had also suffered with high bp & pre-eclampsia so could relate to what I was going through. She responded by saying "Eleanor, you do realise that in reality you will have to increase the medication you're on as the pregnancy progresses, not come off?" I knew this but as I said to her "If anyone can do it, God can" and he did!!!

I stayed off medication until approx 33/34 weeks and within 2-3weeks of going back on it I'd had it increased, a second drug added, was admitted to hospital, developed pre-eclampsia & gave birth naturally (drug free I might add!!) to my beautiful precious Rebekah. She was perfect. Even as I write this now I get tearful as I remember it all. Her growth was never affected by my bp or the drugs and aside from the fact she was a nightmare to breastfeed in the beginning you'd never know she was a 36 weeker.

I was in hospital for 11days before and after she was born. It was a long time, I HATED it before she was born!! I was lonely, bored & cried a lot!! But, I must say, now when I think back to the time after she was born I treasure it!! It was such a precious time. At night it was just Rebekah and I and I loved getting to know her and doing everything for her. In the day time Tom would come and together we fell in love with our baby girl. It was hard to not all be together (probably worse for poor Tom who had to leave us every evening) but both Tom and I remember that time very fondly. I can't believe how quickly the time has gone since then & that we're gonna be doing all again in the spring!! YAY!! In spite of the problems I have, I LOVE BEING PREGNANT!!!

Since Rebekah was born our lives have changed dramatically. I'm sure it has been hard at times but I think I look at it with rose-coloured glasses once we come out of each difficult phase... Breastfeeding difficulties, colic, teething etc. But every day I learn something new about her and watching her character develop is amazing. Any 'bad day' we have is nearly always outweighed by how much fun she is. We were very blessed as he was an easy baby who wasn't particularly grumpy & only really cried when something was wrong. But let me tell you when she cried, half the street could hear!!

Yesterday I wrote about how emotional and hormonal I was... All my worries about the day ahead were for nothing (Andrea you were so right!!) and we had a fab day. Rebekah makes me laugh and laugh!! She has a great sense of humour and as she is learning to talk and communicate more we just have a lot of fun.  I find I love her more each day! My mum always says to me "now you have Rebekah you know how much I love you & Miriam (my sister)". Then she always laughs because she says every time she says I have a look on my face that says "you don't love us like I love Rebekah!!" Ha ha ha. It's true and I bet every parent reading this thinks the same. We all think our children are the best and we love them the most & I don't think that's a bad thing. Another thing my Mum used to say was that she was amazed how much you can love your children but how wonderful bed time is!!! How true. Sometimes I am so tired & if Rebekah has had an especially feisty day, I love it when she gets in bed & Tom and I have time alone. Other times however, like last night, I miss her like crazy when she's asleep & I secretly hope she'll wake up so I can have a cuddle with a warm sleepy toddler. Does anyone else ever feel like that?

I better go now before I bore you all to sleep and before my girl wakes up from her nap. It's Friday afternoon so we're off into town to meet Tom from work & have a coffee or dinner together as a family to kick-start our weekend.

Thursday, 6 November 2008


It's 8:45 in the morning & already I've been on an emotional roller coaster & I feel the need to share. So as I'm on my own with a 20month old... The blog gets it!!

 I woke up feeling like I wanted to cry... Maybe because Rebekah was crying at 5:45, then went back to sleep but unfortunately I could not. I was tossing & turning, just couldn't get comfortable. All the pregnancy books say "sleep on your side, not on your back". Guess how I'm most comfortable... Yep, my back or my front. I can still get away with sleeping on my tummy but this morning I needed a wee.  So after getting up & sneaking across the landing (so as not to wake the sleeping toddler), I got back in bed & hoped for sleep. No such luck!! Why can't you sleep when you're so tired?? Tom got up for work and I was all on my own

Anyway I decided to take advantage of time on my own, spread out in the bed & stuck on a dvd (a chick flick)... Bad move. I spent most of it on the verge of tears thinking 'am I going crazy? what's wrong with me?' I persuaded myself this type of behavior is totally normal for a pregnant/hormonal lady, finished the film & came downstairs & turned on the laptop.

My friend Liz started a blog yesterday & so I read her first post. Again I wanted to cry!!! It certainly wasn't sad & by this stage I was starting to get worried... 'Will I be like this all day?... Hope I don't burst into tears when I'm out... What will Rebekah think if her Mummy keeps crying?' To be fair I shouldn't worry about the latter as she usually thinks it's hilarious.  Anyway at that point I heard my beautiful girl waking up. 

When I got in her room, picked her up & heard 'hello mummy' I melted with pure joy & felt anything but tearful. I thought I mist be 'cured'!!! To be fair, who wouldn't melt at this face...

Beautiful girl!!!

However, I wasn't 'cured' and in the last half hour I've laughed with Rebekah, snapped at her, apologised & had lots of kisses & cuddles.  I'm not sure a hormonal Mummy & strong-willed toddler is a good combination but we will make the best of it! I love my girl so much &  I hate being grumpy with her!! 

I wonder what the day ahead will bring? Can anyone relate or am I just crazy?

Wednesday, 5 November 2008

Wordless Wednsday...

I have stolen this idea from MckMama's blog (I'm sure she won't mind) & it seems like a good idea so I hope you like it!

These are just a few photos from our recent trip to Disneyland Paris.

Riding Dumbo with Mummy... I'm not sure who was more scared on the KIDS ride!!!

Staring in wonder at the evening parade

The evening parade

Disney excitement

Hanging out at the hotel

Pondering at the aquarium

Monday, 3 November 2008

Monday morning excitement!

Good morning! I hope your Monday morning  is a good one. I was hoping to do my first "Not me Monday" today. This is something that MckMama has been doing over on her blog and is LOTS of fun!!! As she only gave birth to her Mckmiracle baby boy Stellan last Wednesday she has a pretty good excuse to not do a "Not me Monday" this week. Stellan's story is amazing and God performed a real miracle in his life before he was even born!!! Check out the full story (and a pretty awesome blog) here.  So instead of the planned "not me Monday" post this morning I will have to come up with something else! 

I woke up this morning feeling pretty excited about they day ahead. Why? I'm not entirely sure. It could be because Rebekah slept all the way through last night for the first time in a week!! She was ill last week and we were all up several times a night. 2 nights it was every 1.5-2hrs. We were all exhausted. It was almost like having a newborn again except I couldn't just breastfeed her back to sleep and with a temperature and a bad cough she was very sad when she woke up. The night she was most unwell she decided she did however, want to breastfeed, and considering she self-weaned nearly a month ago I was somewhat surprised. What was more surprising was that once she had got comfy she fed for 20mins!!! Maybe it's because I'm pregnant that she found anything there at all but whatever the reason it did the trick and she went back to bed a happy bunny. Over the next couple of days she asked for 'Mummy's milk' once or twice but actually wasn't really very interested and now she's back to 'milk from the fridge'. Anyway, I digress... Last night not only did she sleep all the way through but she slept from 7pm-8am!!! After having a much needed 'lie-in' no wonder I felt excited when I woke up.

It could also be that after the school holidays our toddler group is back on this morning... YAY!!!! I think I didn't realise how much us Mums rely on  'toddin' til the first school holiday after Rebekah was born. We have a really good toddler group that runs out of our church and it is a lifesaver! We have had a 'baby boom' in our church over the last couple of years & I can't tell you what a blessing it is to have such a close group of 'mummy' friends who can totally relate to each other and be completely honest about where we're at not just as Mummies but in all areas... Our spiritual lives, mummy lives and marriages. I would definitely be lost without these girls & we see each other most days. With most of our families living far away the support we give each other is vital. Not to mention how nice it is for Rebekah to have so many little friends to play with (especially when she's stuck with me most of the week).
Well it's now Monday afternoon as I finish this post. Apparently watching Mummy blogging isn't very interesting to a toddler (surprise eh?) so I better finish this quickly before she wakes up! Hope you've all had a good Monday!!

Saturday, 1 November 2008

Who we are...

It's nap time in our house (which is a wonderful time of the day as all you parents out there will know) so I thought I'd sit down and let you know a bit about us...
We are a Jesus loving, Bible believing, growing family of 3 and a bump.  We live in a pretty run down inner city area in the North of England which is undergoing much needed regeneration. Tom & I met when we both moved here in the summer of 2001 to join Eden which is a urban community based christian youth project. 2 years later we were married and we are still here, part of the community.  Tom is my wonderful husband. He's 26 and works as a radio producer &  presenter for a Christian radio station. I am 30 (just) and am a midwife when I'm not home looking after our daughter. Rebekah is our beautiful daughter. She's 20 months now and what a fun age!!! She's starting to talk and exert her Independence. She is very strong-willed (like both her parents) and a little chatterbox (like her Mummy). Her favourite thing to do is read (like Daddy) and if everyone is busy she will happily read to herself or her teddies. Our latest addition, 'Bump' is currently 13weeks and due to make an appearance on the 5th of May 2009. I love the idea of a 'May baby' but if Rebekah was anything to go by we'll be meeting 'bump'  a bit earlier!
I LOVE being pregnant!!! However, pregnancy does not love me. I have 'high risk' pregnancies due to my blood pressure. In both pregnancies my blood pressure (bp) has gone through the roof at 12weeks. Last time, in spite of this, Rebekah was born safe and well at 36wks. This was against many peoples expectations & I firmly believe this was the power of prayer. In fact I even got a break from the medication for a couple of months in the middle!! This is not normal. Anyway, a week ago I started on the medication after being in & out of the hospital over 3 days.
I don't know what will happen this time around, will I be "lucky" like last time. I sincerely hope & pray I will but at this point I have no other choice but to willingly place my health and my baby in my heavenly Fathers arms and trust Him. 
Some of you reading this, probably think I'm crazy but after following God for so many years I can truthfully say that through the good & the bad & all the highs & lows life has thrown at me I wouldn't be the person I am if I had not completely placed my life in His hands. It's sometimes scary, don't get me wrong, but it's certainly the safest place to be, and there's nowhere else I'd rather be!!

First post!

Well after blog lurking for many months and becoming a blog reading addict I have finally decided to start my own. I am not quite sure what path this will take & my writing skills aren't the best so we shall see how this pans out.
I suspect it'll be all about our growing family & our day to day lives in His hands. We're probably not the most exciting family but I hope it'll be an enjoyable read and a new journey we can take together.
Please leave comments to let me know what you think and let me know you're reading.
I will use my next post to introduce myself properly & tell you a bit more about us.