I know it’s December because one of my children is poorly. Poor Kitty came home early from school on Thursday, spent almost the entire of Friday asleep in my bed, and finally dropped her temperature on Saturday and started to perk up a little; albeit a little that included an early afternoon veg out in bed and staying in pyjamas all day. The joys of a new school this year is that she’s meeting a whole new set of bugs so it’s not wholly surprising, and cosseting, sleep and honey and lemon do wonders. I’m just keeping all my fingers and toes crossed that that’s it; the rest of us can just pick up a little immunity from exposure to her and we’ll all be fine, that tickle in my throat is just spices from this evening’s curry, and the pigs are well fed and ready to fly.
My lovely aunt sent us a bag of fruit and veggies on Friday so we’ve been arming ourselves against bugs with satsumas – finger crossed.
The courier for said veg was Grandpa, on a flying pre-Christmas visit. He came up from Devon on Thursday, stayed with my aunt, met a friend for lunch and was with us from Friday tea until just before dusk on Saturday when he had to head home to be able to preach in the morning. Whirlwind indeed.
And with Kitty poorly, John and me shattered from a week that was no calmer than the last, and even Elma and Pip getting tired as we roll towards the end of term, we scrapped any plans to do anything really, and just cosied up at home. And it was lovely. It’s always nice to see my Dad in person rather than on screen and I don’t think he’d been through the door more than ten minutes before the kids had him sat down on the sofa, cup of tea in one hand and a giant pile of stories in the other while I finished up my work for the night and John made spag bol for supper.
I love hearing him read to the children; I think as much as anything it’s a throwback to being that kind of tiny myself when Dad would always read my bedtime story, especially when we moved onto Old Possum’s Book of Practical Cats – I hear Skimbleshanks in his voice when I read it, it’s one of my favourite poems of all time; and for what it’s worth, the version from Cats sounds all wrong to me – it’s in the wrong key and the patter should sound like a train underway.
And when we gave the books a rest, there were still all the stories to hear from his recent trip to Iran, and lots of photos to go with it (if you’ve ever wondered where my side of this family’s crazy travel bug comes from, now you have your answer!). Iran sounds an amazing, complicated, contradictory sort of place, with some incredible scenery and some seriously beautiful tiled buildings, textile art that mirrored them, and an overriding sense of a dusty gold and cobalt blue colour palette. That the group he travelled with found the people on the streets very friendly, but were also processed through a lot of police checkpoints seems to sum up the trip.
All too soon it was time for him to head home again, but I’m glad to the chance to catch up in person – and very thankful that, seeing Pip about the climb the walls with surplus energy, grandfather and grandson headed out into the garden to scoop up all of our leaves to make the house look extra lovely in the hope that someone someday will actually want to come and have a look at it. Pip had so much fun pottering around after his Grandpa, and getting to be out in the garden to make yet another set of muddies; I think it made his weekend!
(I love how seriously Pip’s taking it all!)
And now it’s Sunday; it’s another busy week coming, but, if I’m counting it right, I only have 12 more working days until my Christmas holidays start and I can’t wait!
Joining Katie at Mummy Daddy Me for The Ordinary Moments