So Long, Farewell, 2017

December 30, 2017

I’m so eager to start 2018. I’m feeling really positive about it. But does anyone else feel that that week between Christmas and New Year lasts almost as long as the last month of pregnancy… Christmas seems forever ago. I have no idea what day it is and as a result, I need to look at my phone to work it out. I’m so sick of eating junk food that I’m actually craving vegetables and I realised yesterday that over the last week, I’ve not had one single glass of water as I’ve been trying to get rid of the lemonade and coke and alcohol that we bought in such abundance…  Did we think we were suddenly going to get an onslaught of visitors? We barely have more than a handful of friends between us and most of those that we do have, all live hours away!

So anyway, I wanted to write this post as a sort of Au Revoir to 2017. To have a quick look back at what has changed and to revisit some of my favourite things that have happened over the last year in hope that it closes the door and then opens up to a new and exciting year.

I’ll start with Instagram.
You’ve probably all seen the #2017BestNine pictures that people are posting. (simple enough to do, just google 2017 best 9 and then put in your insta name and it will give you your top 9 photos) Well here is mine. It would appear people love a good bump shot with those forming 4 out of my 9. 2 Newborn pictures and a couple of every day parenting images make up the rest.
I doubt anyone wants to see my belly after 3 kids and a metric ton of Christmas junk food so I won’t be sharing anymore bump pictures next year, and Didge is now 6 months old so no newborn piccies either I’m afraid. However, you will definitely see my feral kids in all their crazy glory. Perhaps even a few grey-haired selfies! You can follow me on Instagram here.


So what actually happened in 2017?

 

Well, back in January, Paisley celebrated her first birthday. She’d had practice opening presents just 2 weeks earlier with her first Christmas so managed them quite well. We had a little tea party with our close family and I completely forgot to take pictures. Poor Pais, talk about 2nd child syndrome!

 

In February at our 20-week scan, it was discovered that Bridget had a possible hole in her heart, so we were sent for another scan at Great Ormond Street hospital. Liam and I took the opportunity to try and relax without the kids for a bit and went out for dinner while in London. It’s amazing how many people have had holes in their hearts or know someone who has and everybody was very reassuring. On her last scan (when she was about a month old) they said the hole is still there but will likely close up before her first birthday. Even if it doesn’t, it shouldn’t give her any problems at all.

Mothers Day Brunch

That month, I was invited to a wonderful Mother’s Day Brunch with a handful of other mummy bloggers. It was a lovely day out and a few of us went to a cafe afterwards which was a great opportunity to get to know some new people. It’s nice sometimes to just sit and chew the fat.

Bluebell Woods at Ferry Meadows

April saw the start of the warmer weather and some gorgeous bluebells but also brought with it the dreaded Gestational Diabetes. Pricking my finger after every meal and as soon as I woke up became the new, depressing norm and my already exhausting and miserable pregnancy became even harder. Luckily though, I was told about a facebook group which helped massively so if you suffer with GD yourself, I would most definitely head over and take a look.

Gestational Diabetes

May, along with an exhaustingly huge bump consisting of polyhydramnios and a ‘large’ baby saw me in and out of hospital every couple of days. I had steroid injections, overnight stays and I sighed and cried… a lot. Really ugly crying. I was done in. Completely. When Liam had previously suggested having a vasectomy I must admit, I was a little sad but this pregnancy broke me. I couldn’t bear the thought of going through all of this again. I loved all of my bumps but I do NOT carry babies well at all!

I got big bump and I cannot lie!

Wicksteed Park

In June, something happened. I perked up a little bit. Not a lot. Walking was still hard, I got very light headed and had to really watch what I was eating but I was able to not only survive but enjoy a day out at Wicksteed Park for Dexter’s Birthday.
Then, just 11 days later, Bridget was born. Our last baby was finally here. I was super proud that I’d delivered her with nothing but gas and air after an epidural with Dexter and a section with Pais. I was also super relieved that she was all well and perfect. Granted her blood sugars were low and she was a bit jaundiced so we had to stay in for a while and she still has a hole in her heart but I’d been so worried about losing her with all of the complications that GD can cause that I was just so super happy to have her in my arms. I never told Liam how worried I was, as I didn’t want him to worry too but I was terrified that something would go wrong.

Dexter and Paisley meeting Bridget for the first time

Didge in the flowers

Over the summer we settled into a new normal as a family of 5.  The holidays meant we had some time off with family and friends for picnics, days out and lazy days in the garden. Generally just chilling out while we got used to having Bridget around and making the most of the time before Dexter started School in September.
August was very exciting for me in particular as I (along with my sister Olivia and my friend, Claire,) went to see Miranda Lambert! My all-time most favourite singer. I had no idea if she would hang around after the show but on the off chance, we wandered round to the back of the venue and sure enough, she came out to sign a few autographs and take a few selfies. She was so friendly and polite and her security crew were really down to earth too. What a moment!

Bridget rolled over in September and my days of having a baby that stayed were I left her, vanished in a puff of smoke. No longer could I put her on her activity mat while tending to the other two and expect her to still be there when I turned around.

Liam and I had a trip to the final ever European Woodworking show in Essex. Woodworking is a huge passion of Liam’s and it’s nice that we had a day out to enjoy that together. He supports me massively with this blog so I was more than happy to go along and share in his hobby with him. We are now both currently making our own spoons from blanks that Liam was gifted from the guy that made these! Yes, I carve spoons now, don’t you know! Liam is currently working on his own woodworking directory which will have a few blog posts on it too at some point.

Wooden Spoons made by Lee Stoffer

I settled into the life of a school run mum, looking up ways to help Dexter learn to read tricky words and having a sense of routine for the first time in ages. In October I finally treated myself to the camera I’d been lusting after for ages and instantly started putting much better images in my blog posts (perhaps not this one as many of these were done on my phone).
Liam and I took Olivia to Birmingham to have a look at the university and the kids and I took up rock painting as the ‘Love on the rocks’ swept across the country.

Bridgets first Halloween came and went on the same day as Dexter’s first Parent’s evening. I wasn’t at all sure of what to expect for this so asked a few bloggers for advice.

In November, I went along to an event at The Ivy in Covent Garden where I ate the most amazing dinner I have ever tasted. I also met Dr Hilary Jones and chatted about nappy rash and the menopause! Isn’t that what everyone talks about at dinner?

And then, all of a sudden, it was Christmas! We had friends round for a ‘games and Chinese’ evening at the start of December, followed by more Chinese with my family on the 23rd and KFC with Liam’s family on the 24th.. so we’ve eaten a lot! We had a wonderful, perfect Christmas day at home, just the 5 of us. We opened gifts, played all day with the children and even watched the Queens Speach – not that I could hear what she was saying over the excitement. We then spent Boxing day at my mums with more food, more gifts and more games.

Which brings me to now.

Now I am ready to start the new year. I hadn’t realised how much we had managed to squeeze into this year until I started to write it all down. I’m very thankful to have been able to share this year with my amazing friends and family. Sending big love to each of you that have been a part of my 2017 and I hope many of you will be a part of my 2018 too.

Sending you all the best of wishes for 2018.

xxxx

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