Wednesday, February 26, 2014


Go to sleep, Mum,

I won’t stop breathing
suddenly, in the night.

Go to sleep, I won’t
climb out of my cot and
tumble downstairs.

Mum, I won’t swallow
the pills the doctor gave you or
put hairpins in electric
sockets, just go to sleep.

I won’t cry
when you take me to school and leave me:
I’ll be happy with other children
my own age.

Sleep, Mum, sleep.
I won’t
fall in the pond, play with matches,
run under a lorry or even consider
sweets from strangers.

No, I won’t
give you a lot of lip,
not like some.

I won’t sniff glue,
fail all my exams,
get myself/
my girlfriend pregnant.
I’ll work hard and get a steady/
really worthwhile job.
I promise, go to sleep.

I'll never forget
to drop in/phone/write
and if
I need any milk, I’ll yell.

- Rosemary Norman

Source: Goodwin, D 2002, 101 Poems That Could Save Your Life: An Anthology of Emotional First Aid, Harper.

Six weeks to go

How time flies. I am now 34 weeks pregnant, and suddenly time seems to be running out before the arrival of our first baby.

But if anything life has got busier recently. I have now had all the corrections signed off for my thesis so my Ph.D. is finally all finished, but I have just taken on two jobs to get in some extra cash before baby. Nearly a year and a half with no second income after my bursary ended has certainly taken it's toll on our finances. In between working in a cafe baking cakes and serving coffees, and filling in during half term in a local shop, I'm on my feet more now than at any other stage of my pregnancy.

We are also full flow on our latest house project - the bathroom. We bought a suite nearly a year ago in a sale, and it has lived in the nursery-to-be ever since. As we would quite like to have our baby things sorted before too long, the bathroom suddenly became a priority. I has been our hardest project to date.

As it now stands we have a bath, toilet, much needed extractor fan, and new towel radiator connected. No sink, no tiles, no flooring. We sill have the old shower in place, but this will soon go once the bath is fully functional.

In ten days we had overnight visitors on nine of them! How wonderful to see so many family and friends, but not ideal with an incomplete bathroom, and especially with only one toilet. It has also meant the renovation has slowed almost to a halt. So we have to move it up a gear now to get it all done.

And then we can start on our nursery. I just hope we have enough time.

Monday, February 24, 2014

A nicer type of rain...

This last weekend I had my baby shower, a wonderful afternoon tea and games organised by my sisters. The theme we chose was children's books, and each guest was invited to bring along their favourite childhood book to make a library for the baby. Each book was presented with an owl bookplate, and will make a wonderful collection for the years to come.

I also had a fantastic nappy cake, full of amazingly useful and lovely gifts from toiletries to toys, beautifully presented and tied up with wonderful royal blue vintage ribbon. We are planning to use reusable nappies, although not for the first few weeks, and even the nappy choice to make the cake was perfect for me, being biodegradable nappies.

With some of my closest friends spread across the globe and unable to make the journey to West Wales from Canada, Peru, New Zealand and Scotland, the gathering was small, but still perfect.

While fizz and tea flowed, and red velvet cupcakes, shortbread, cheese scones, 'baby feet' gingerbread, and a 'baby in the cot' cake were consumed, we played a variety of games. These included guessing the the arrival date, weight and sex of the baby, putting a towelling nappy on a teddy (surprisingly difficult when it has a tail!), guessing the size of my bump, a famous babies quiz, and remembering lines from nursery rhymes. Prizes were baby themed sweets: milk bottles and jelly dummies.

I was touched to see the book character decorations that I made for my sister's baby shower two years previous, made a reappearance at mine.

A fantastic afternoon, and part of a lovely weekend with my family.