We've just had quite a busy week-end - and Monday, one were three days ago feels like two weeks ago...
Well, three days ago DH and I had our 40th birthday party. We are both 40 this year, even if I am already 40 years, 3 months and 11 days old, whethr DH is still 39 for just a bit less than 6 months (as #1 and #2 kep reminding me).
We had a barn dance party and it was tremendous fun. Don't you love that expression, tremendous fun?! It was, truly. And I think everyone who was brave enough to throw themselves in the dances would say the same. The music is so full of joy and the moves are to society dancing a bit like what Twister is to board games : a lough-out-loud, everybody in the same boat, all ages confounded kind of things. I-LOVE-IT!
Food wise I had been baking and freezing for week : 6 savoury cakes (ham and olives, cured ham and purple olives, sundried tomatoes and basil) and two duck breasts pies. DH induced a last minute panick that there wouldn't be enough and had me running to the local Co-op to buy just-in-case pizzas, but there was enough, even if I cheated a bit by providing the children with bought cocktail sausages and sausage rolls, sandwiches made in the morning and looooads of crisps. A lovely friend brought plenty of strawberries and cream as well as cakes.
All in all a very big improvement compared with my actual birthday : a sickness bug (travelling through the family, arriving to me and #4 just in time for my 40th), and a follow-up visit with the surgeon for #4's toe (which will have to be the subject of its own post...).
We brought four very tired children from the party, including one with a slightly swollen thumb (#3 who had played with doors), some lovely pressies and lots of stuff deposited in the sitting-room and found still waiting to be put away when we came back from Buckinghamshire...
Yes, the morning after the party (which thankfully finished at 10.00 pm) we set off for Buckinghamshire where I was attending a two days workshop for my training (to support breastfeeding mums). We had left #1 (I'm scared, I want to go with you!) and #2 (Yeah!!!!!) to a kindly friend, packed the car and hit the motorway.
The place where the workshop was taking place was quite stunning, an old stately house called Latimer
The challenge of these two days, for me, was that I had to be apart from #4 quite a lot, meeting up with her to feed her. She is 8 months and although having some solids she still needs a good number of feeds. Well, to be frank she was in no danger to go hungry as I had enough breaks to feed her regularly but then breastfeeding is so much more than just food. Dr Lans Hanson wrote that breastmilk is 75% nutrition and 26% (yes, 26!) protection, what with all the living cells loaded with antibodies, hormones and all manners of wonderfull stuff ! And it's also the closeness, the comfort, the 'love' hormone called oxytocin that makes both mother and baby feel good.
It's hard being a parent and having to leave your children grow up, live lives that haven't got anything to do with you and be exposed to DANGER ! I love the song from ABBA, Slipping Through my Fingers, full of the nostalgia of seeing your children leave you, little step by little step, on the way to adulthood.
At least when they're babies you can really be with them at all times and protect them, know they're safe. And that's just the thing, I had to relinquish a bit of this special time of #4's life and it was difficult... But then I suppose you have to make sacrifices sometimes for what you believe in.
And the long cuddles in th evenings, when I could be reunited with her, were so lovely !