Well, here we are in the last month of a year that I think no one will forget for a very long time. The last 12 months have been incredibly testing for many and while 2020 will be farewelled with much gusto, the challenges that come with dealing with a global pandemic won’t magically disappear when the clock strikes midnight on New Year’s Eve. I sincerely hope however, that we take away a few lessons from this last year: the importance of family and friends, of of fresh air and being outside, and of good health. Simple pleasures, but ones that fill your heart and head with joy.
Last week we celebrated Paul’s first birthday. Although he’s none the wiser to the milestone it feels like such an achievement – for both him and Adam and I. It’s truly mind blowing how much babies change in their first year of life. From a tiny, helpless newborns, coming to grips with life out of utero to little people with big personalities, so keen to explore the world around them.
We really can’t believe 12 months has passed since we welcomed Paul into our family…
One of the things I love about the online world we now exist in, is its ability to connect us to people, places and things we might not normally come across. Last month whilst birthday shopping for Adam, I stumbled across Annie Brougham’s Instagram page. I instantly fell in love with her beautiful flora and fauna illustrations and knew Adam would too, so I placed an order…
January is a busy month for birthdays in our family and with that comes a lot of cake. While sponges and chocolate cakes are always favourites for special occasions, sometimes it’s nice to celebrate with something a little different. So for Adam’s birthday this year he decided he wanted to bake his own cake, and an apple one at that…
Adam celebrated a birthday over weekend so we’ve spent the last few days stretching out festivities, instead of trying to cram it all into one 24 hour period.
As I wrote out a soppy card for him last week, I began to think about how interesting it’s been seeing Adam back in his ‘native territory’ over the last few months. Most people who travel (including Adam) will happily tell you the experience is life changing. The person you were when you left isn’t always the same as when you return.
Last week I celebrated my birthday and as part of his gift to me Adam bought us National Trust membership. I’d been ogling at some of the properties the Trust owns in the lead-up to our departure from Australia and we recently had a wonderful stay in a National Trust cottage in the Lake District, so I was thoroughly chuffed at the present.
After a scan of the thick book of attractions that was sent to us, we quickly decided to head to a property about a 20 minute drive from Malvern, Croome – which for many years was the home of the Earls of Coventry and more recently the site of a secret World War Two airbase, RAF Defford.
The main house is stunning and I must confess I immediately felt like I’d stepped onto the set of a Downton Abbey episode!
Is it just me, or do special occasions often make you think about life? The past, the present and what’s happening right now. Today is my birthday, the first I’ve celebrated abroad (!), and this week I’ve been spending a lot of time just thinking about how much has changed since December last year.
Twelve months ago I was getting ready to host my family for Christmas in Wagga Wagga. This year I’ll be with Adam’s family in England. It still seems slightly surreal that I’m here, in the UK… and not on holiday! I’m still pinching myself, realising this is now my every day.