Friday, 29 February 2008

Life, laundry and the pursuit of tidiness

Sorry folks, I promise to post some holiday pictures soon, but I have to get my house under control first. It took seven wash loads (SEVEN!) to do all the washing from the holiday, and that doesn't include the 'hand wash' load I still have to do. I've got folded laundry all over the house and an enormous pile of ironing to do. The house is a complete disaster looks like it was the epicentre of the earthquake we had earlier this week (which we slept through by the way!). Suffice to say, blogging is way down on the priority list this week!

In case you were wondering, the children and I are all now healthy again after our sickness last week (Tom went down with it on the Monday we were travelling home), but it does look like Mark might be coming down with it, so I may be looking after another patient this weekend. I'll post some pictures when things have returned to 'normal' round here.

Saturday, 23 February 2008

Alpine greetings

In case you were wondering why I haven't posted for a week, it's because we're on holiday in the Alps. We flew out last Friday and will be travelling home on Monday. I wouldn't normally post on holiday, but little Lily is very poorly today, so I've stayed in the hotel with her while she sleeps. Mark, Tom and Mark's parents have gone out to get something to eat and to keep a very noisy little boy from disturbing his sick sister. I was rather unwell myself yesterday, but I seem to have got over it quickly. I'm praying Lily will too.

We have had a lovely time up until the onset of disease. We had three days in Berchtesgaden, staying in what is quite probably the best hotel in the world. We stayed in the Hotel Alpenhof for the first time during our honeymoon tour and this was our third visit. It was such a relaxing place to spend a few days. We then travelled to Vienna as Mark had a business meeting there. We took the Podlings to Vienna zoo while Mark was in his meeting and they had a fabulous time. Lily loved the giraffes and Tom was highly amused by the penguins. Tom got a bit frightened when a rather large orangutan took a charge at him and smacked into the glass of its cage right in front of where Tom was standing. He got over it quickly though and was rather excited when he found an abandoned toy car tucked under a bench in the penguin house. In fact, I think he had more enjoyment out of the car than the animals! For Lily, it was very much all about the animals and she loved every minute of it.

We are now in Innsbruck, but haven't really had a chance to explore the area between my being sick yesterday and Lily today. We still have tomorrow to look around if Lily is better though. I will post more pictures from our holiday when we get home. At least, I will if I can take time out from the laundry. Our washing machine is going to take such a hammering when we get home!

Thursday, 14 February 2008

Thursday, 7 February 2008

Something to be thankful for

Every night, before we turn out their lights, we say prayers with the children. At the moment, for Lily this simply means I recite 'Now I lay me down to sleep' before I put her in her cot. Because Tom is a little older, we also say a little 'Dear God, thank you for...' type prayer and we encourage Tom to think of things to be thankful for in addition to the things we suggest. Most of Tom's suggestions involve thanking God for cars, trains and whatever else might be his current obsession. Last night, when we asked Tom what he would like to thank God for he replied 'Thank you for Daddy coming home.' It was so sweet to hear him saying that completely without prompting and I know Mark was very touched by it. It was a very special moment.

Tuesday, 5 February 2008

Health update for the concerned

For anyone wondering about Tom, he was feeling a bit better today. He still had a temperature, but he seemed to have more energy and was playing more. He still hasn't much appetite, but he dosen't eat much anyway and his appetite is always the first to go when he's sick. I'm happy to report that his appetite for chocolate is undiminished...always a good indicator of how serious an illness is I feel! I have no idea what is wrong with him as it doesn't seem to be developing into anything, but thankfully whatever it is seems to be passing off now. Lily doesn't seem to be coming down with it either, which is good news. I'm hoping to have my little boy back to normal and tearing about the house again tomorrow. I hate to see my babies suffering when they are unwell.

Monday, 4 February 2008

Broken eggs


I completely ran out of eggs at the weekend, so we popped out to the shops yesterday and bought half a dozen. Later that evening when I went to fetch them from the car, the box of eggs tumbled out of the carrier bag and fell with a decided crunch on the driveway. Amazingly, only one of the eggs smashed completely, but all of the eggs were cracked so I needed to use them up today or throw them away. My family have done quite well out of my clumsiness as I made a Victoria sponge cake and a batch of cocoa courgette muffins with four of the eggs. The remaining egg I fried and had for my tea this evening. Unfortunately, Mark is away on business today and won't be back until tomorrow, so I had nobody to 'come to tea' with me this evening. Looks pretty though doesn't it!

Incidentally, I know you are probably thinking "Courgettes in a muffin...ewwww!", but I assure you they are delicious. You don't taste the courgette at all and it's a great way of getting extra vitamins into the Podlings. In fact, they were one of the few things that Tom actually ate today. I'm just hoping that Mark tries one before he reads this post, because if he knows there are courgettes in the muffins, he won't eat them!

Poorly boy

My poor little man was feeling under the weather today. He had a temperature and was very tired and lethargic. He had very little appetite (even less than usual) and spent most of the day lounging on the sofa under a blanket. He was a very brave soul though and didn't complain once. I kept trying to tempt him with tasty morsels, gave him lots of cuddles and let him watch his favourite cartoon (Roary the Racing Car) all day. Lily decided to get in on the act and, despite being the picture of health, insisted that she get to sit on the sofa under a blanket too. I like to think she was coming out in sympathy! Hopefully Tom will be better tomorrow and Lily will avoid whatever it is that he had today.

Sunday, 3 February 2008

Winter wonderland

We awoke yesterday morning to find a thin covering of snow on the ground, so I bundled the Podlings up in their winter gear early and we headed into the garden to enjoy it before it melted. Tom didn't last long (hence no photos of him). He shuffled around the patio for about five minutes then headed back indoors to play in the warm. Lily, on the other hand, is a real outdoor girl...she'd move into the garden if she could! She had the most wonderful time playing in the snow and couldn't get enough of it! She particularly enjoyed eating the snow...something I'll have to watch when we are anywhere other than the garden! I played outside with her for an hour and then came inside to make the lunch while Mark took both Podlings to play in the front garden. When they came in, we all had hot chocolate to warm up while I finished making the lunch. We then sat down to a warming meal of homemade leek and potato soup and hotdogs. I'm so glad we went out early as by lunchtime, most of the snow had melted.

In the afternoon, Mark's mum and dad came for a visit, so all in all we had a lovely day. It doesn't look like we're going to get any more snow here though, so we are looking forward to our trip to Germany later this month. I'll just have to try and find a way of preventing Lily from eating the snow!

Mmmm, snow!

Saturday, 2 February 2008

Make the world a better place

Wishing by Ella Wheeler Wilcox

Do you wish the world were better?
Let me tell you what to do.
Set a watch upon your actions,
Keep them always straight and true.
Rid your mind of selfish motives,
Let your thoughts be clean and high.
You can make a little Eden
Of the sphere you occupy.

Do you wish the world were wiser?
Well, suppose you make a start,
By accumulating wisdom
In the scrapbook of your heart;
Do not waste one page on folly;
Live to learn, and learn to live
If you want to give men knowledge
You must get, ere you give.

Do you wish the world were happy?
Then remember day by day
Just to scatter seeds of kindness
As you pass along the way,
For the pleasures of the many
May be ofttimes traced to one,
As the hand that plants an acorn
Shelters armies from the sun.
'Loggiato' by Andrea Del Missier