Sunday, 1 May 2016

a day in my life - the weekend edition

Thank you all for you long, thoughtful and encouraging comments on last post. The rest of the week turned out to be really busy, so busy that I forgot to check James's and Alistair's homework. Two outreach events at school, talking to primary 6 and 7 children about 'germs' - the children love to hear about the longest tapeworm ever recovered from a person (32 m) or flesh eating bacteria, and that only the girls of blood eating insects sting or bite (the blokes live on nectar and plant sap). We also had a social get together at work after work and finally, it was Muthaclubbers on Friday, an event not to be missed by any middle aged person in good standing. It was fun. Anyway, today I am once more noting down how life happens to me, this time on a Saturday to give you a flavour of a not untypical weekend day chez nous. Normal service will resume next week.

In the garden on Saturday 30 April 2016

I wake up at 5:50 am. Mr Blackbird is loudly announcing the sunshine. It is such a beautiful song and I don't mind being woken up. I drift back to sleep soon enough. The next time I wake up is when Richard puts a cup of coffee on my bed side table. It has to be 8:30 because, the time he heads out for his Saturday club cycle. He will be out most of the day. I drift off again but the sleep is light and fluffy, I can hear boys giggle downstairs, the shower is running and other morning sounds are gently making their way into my bedroom. I drink my coffee (cold now) and try to read the news on my phone. My vision is blurry and I wonder if I should be worried but then remember that I never removed my mascara last night, which sounds like a reasonable explanation for the haze. I make my way downstairs at about 9:40, feeling grateful that there is no football on today due to the holiday weekend. 

After a lazy start I promise myself a lazy day. The house looks ok through the haze (which is slowly lifting). I choose some easy chores. The boys and I strip the sheets from James' and Alistair's beds. James is exited, this means that it is his turn to sleep on the top bunk. They swap beds when we change bedlinen, an arrangement that works really well. I peg out the first load of washing, washed over night. I enjoy pegging out washing, it is oddly relaxing. I am still in my pjs. No neighbour in sight. Annie takes Jack out for a walk. I am surprised but pleased. We had an argument yesterday about dog walking. I had asked her to take Jack for his morning walk and she said no, it wasn't her turn, pointing to the rota on the door. Richard commented that it had been her turn the three previous days but that HE had taken Jack. Cue huffing and puffing and a great big strop. Annie doesn't like to be reminded of her own shortcomings. Mind you, I don't either. 

I eat a bowl of Dorset cereals (a rare luxury) with a banana slices on top. James and Alistair are happily playing on the family iPad. They were fed and watered by Richard whilst I was in the land of sleep. Annie is hoovering the stairs and the den. I am a bit worried now, wondering about the hidden cost of the unexpected help. I don't ask.

I take a long shower (wearing a bright green frog shower cap, I know who would want to know). I love the feeling of hot hot water washing down my back, taking with it the stresses of a long week. I enjoy the soft lather of an old batch of soap, wishing I had taken notes when I made it. It occurs to me that I still haven't received the fragrance oils for my pretty soaps. Must follow this up. James and Alistair are still playing but more noisily now and I can tell from the sound that their games involves some serious jumping, probably from the top bunk down. I let them be. Soon enough I can hear dice rolling, some more giggling and some loud burping. James likes to burp when he thinks I can't hear.  

I spend a long time reading blogs, leaving a comment here and there. I wish I could follow more blogs than I do but I resist the temptation because I know my limits. I briefly ponder the correlation between reading blogs, leaving comments and the number of followers on own blog. 

Annie cooks pasta with pesto for lunch for herself and the little ones. I opt out because I fancy a tattle scone and bacon roll. I peg out some more washing and then wander around the garden. It is quite beautiful just now. I decide to leave the weeding until the next rain (never far here). It starts to rain almost immediately. It is a brief shower only. I don't weed.

I spend some time sorting my PTA accounts. The account is due for auditing and I would be mortified if any transactions are unaccounted for. I haven't lost any receipts and feel relieved. 

Later, James, Alistair and I take Jack to the woods for a long walk. We have two pairs of binoculars and one camera between us. We walk slowly and quietly, spotting birds and watching them for a while. Jack is chasing invisible squirrels. We see a blackbird nesting in a hole in a big fat branch. I had always assumed blackbirds make their own nests but this one definitely didn't. Maybe it wasn't a black bird. We hear more birds than we see. We check out the bird boxes for signs of nesting but can't see or hear anything. Our favourite is box no 7. It was the home of blue tits last year and we went to see it often. Pond side there are two duck families, each with about 11 ducklings. Jack got very exited and jumped in the water. He isn't a great swimmer and I can see he regrets his audacious dive instantly, paddling frantically back to safety. The ducks are laughing at him from the middle of the pond. 

At home, I take some washing down and put some more up. Sam has cooked himself a late breakfast, the smell of bacon lingers, the mess is quite astonishing. It is good to know he is up. I hope he is studying but I leave him to it. He did ask to order a National 5 maths exercise book, which is encouraging. I assume he uses it for studying and not for kindle. He has been collecting dryer lint for kindle, he must have plans I am unaware of. Annie spends the afternoon on the computer. 

James and Alistair go to the playground. They have a watch and I tell them to be back at 4:45. Where did the time go? I finish the PTA accounts whilst they are out. Richard returns from his bike ride and we have coffee. Time passes quickly when you are doing not very much! James and Alistair return at 4:50, having left the playground at 4:45. Not bad for punctuality. They have recently been granted Swiss citizenship and punctuality is of the essence.

I take my PTA account folder to be audited and then spend a lovely half hour sitting with my friend Zoe, we chat about this and that. Meanwhile, Richard is cooking toad in the hole. A text tells me that dinner is ready. I dash home, sit down and it becomes clear quite quickly that Annie is in a foul mood. I choose not to argue but take myself away to the living room, to eat dinner later. It is a shame, toad in the hole is best fresh. The gravy is delicious even cold.  

After clearing up and taking down the last of the washing, I faff with the bust adjustment for my sewing class. I can't remember how to re-draw a dart and spend some time searching the net for an answer. I get side tracked but I do eventually finish and trace the adjusted pattern off. The older kids are nowhere to be seen, the little ones are watching Ninjago on the telly. At bedtime we remember that the bedlinen is still in the laundry bag. 

At 9 pm I snuggle up under a blanket, firmly seated in my favourite chair. I watch Mr Blackbird on the TV aerial on the house on the other side of the road. He had a long day, much longer than mine. I am ready to watch some television and knit a round or two. We watch Bosch on Amazon Prime. I get to bed quite late, just after midnight. 

It has been  a calm day. It feels like a holiday actually. I suppose it is a holiday of sorts, a long weekend at least.  

How was your Saturday? And how is your Sunday unfolding? The weather is not great here but it is not as bad as forecast. I am not sure what we are going to do with the rest of the day. Wishing you a lovely afternoon and a great week. xx


  1. Your days give me such memories of when my girls were teens. So much calm or chaos depended on their mood and the choices you make on when to engage with them. Believe it or not I miss those days :-)

  2. Hey Christina,
    I quite like Ninjago ;)
    I enjoy the charting of your day. I'm glad that you are able to have a lie in; I very rarely get one of these. Our weekends are similar to yours. Normal family life. I'm glad.
    Leanne xx

  3. It sounds like a wonderful day in your life. Yesterday I took Little Buddy to the zoo, it was not entirely fun, but it was an experience. Can you picture me pushing a crying child in a stroller while carry a diaper bag, purse and walker on my shoulder? Not a pretty site!

  4. How very full your life is, a few moments of silence must always feel like heaven. My Saturday was good, though too hot. Cleaning bits of the house I've been trying to ignore, working on my puzzle and feeling guilty I haven't been working on my crochet project.
    Then pizza and a salad.

  5. You certainly live life to the full, I remember those days well with 3 girls in the house, juggling a full time job and trying to keep on top of the household chores. Not much happening here a little bit of baking and a stroll.

  6. Despite being busy all day this does sound like a very laid back and relaxed sort of day. I hope Annie's mood has improved!

  7. Lovely relaxed weekends, they're the best. Especially when there's a bank holiday Monday as well. Really enjoyed your two Day In The Life posts, it sounds like such a happy family you have. CJ xx

  8. I can't remember the last time I slept in ... I always want to be the first one up to take advantage of a quiet sleeping household. Sounds like you had a nice relaxing day, despite the few tiny hiccups (cold coffee, unhappy girl). Have a wonderful week!

  9. This is another great post Christina, the ebb and flow of family life sounds quite similar to our house at the weekend. Jacob is studying for his Highers at the moment, so we have that to add to the mix too x

  10. It is such fun to think of us duck watching on different sides of the pond, you in Scotland and me in Boring, Oregon :) It was warm and lovely here today. After church we had our first cookout of the year. The fire raged over the meat causing my daughter to text me that lunch was canceled! The family, in fear of famine, pulled together to rescue the meat and lunch was enjoyed by all with some discussion of sacrificial burnt offerings to God. My four little granddaughters enjoyed splashing around in cold water in their little plastic pool and now we are winding down ready to sleep. Happy May, Christine :) xx

  11. I've loved reading these posts Christina. There's something so interesting about the minutiae of people's lives; reassuring in the similarities. Thank you for being so open and generous with your blog. I won't clog up your comments with how my day went! Here's to living in the moment, enjoying what we have. Sam x

  12. I'm loving these posts. You know what a people watching person I am. You have such a great way with your kids. Hopefully the sun will shine for you today. I think it will be a spot of cliff walking in this corner of the world. B x

  13. Oh dear, did you find out what caused Annie's bad mood. well done for walking away, I am trying to learn to do that, I seem to be locking heads with the teen boy a lot at the moment xxx

  14. Oh, the thought of a lie-in! We're lucky if we get past 7am on a weekend. More like 6.30 actually - and the same goes for the rest of the week too.
    I suppose you trade in early wake-ups for teenage strops. Swings and roundabaouts...
    S x

  15. Hi Christina, I enjoyed reading about the way your day unfolded. I don't envy the teenage stuff, but it sounds like they are becoming pretty independent, which is a good thing. I think your Saturdays and mine are similar in many ways. It's nice to think of others doing the same kinds of things I do. I hope you have a good week. :)

  16. Your days sound lovely! Full of great family things. I love that punctuality is important to the Swiss!

  17. love your writing. Teens. Yes. I'm up one end of the house and they are down the other. They do all seem to dive bomb on our bed at 11pm at night when I'm half asleep...I suppose that they want to chat then is a good thing!


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