Friday, 16 September 2011

Golf - fore!!!!

I'm off now to my first proper golf lesson! It was a bargain on GroupOn, and I want to see if he can work miracles before the Littlewick Green CC golf day on the 30th September.

Lara Update

Lara's over her stomach bug now. She still had to sleep much of Wednesday night in bed with me, but she went to nusery yesterday and they said she was fine there, and ate well. Last night she spent the whole night in her own bed, for the first time after 6 nights, although she did wake a few times, and has developed an addiction to warm milk. This is OK just before bed, but is a bit of a pain at 1am, as our microwave is loud enough to wake the neighbours, never mind everyone in our house. Lara has promised not to ask for warm milk in the middle of the night again, unless she's ill. Tonight will be the big test. She did have a go at faking a tummy ache at 1am, when I was initially refusing to get her more warm milk, but she quickly refused the milk of magnesia I offered her to help her with her sore tummy. Funny that... I relented in the end though and got her some milk, but only on the definite promise that this was the last time..

CHAMPIONS - Lancashire County Cricket Club

I couldn't let this pass without a post. Sky were kind enough to show the last few overs once Warwickshire had given in to a draw against Hampshire. At least Dad had the best seat in the house to watch the Red Rose county finally win the Championship. There might have been a few ciders knocked back last night in Taunton, even if it wasn't the locals doing the drinking!

Wednesday, 14 September 2011


On Saturday morning we went to see the gardens at Cliveden, the swanky house near Maidenhead, famous for the Profumo scandal in the 1960s amongst lots of other things. Luda had read in the local paper that the gardens would be free to visitors on Saturday, as a way to entice people to join the National Trust. They were very spectacular, and all the better for being free :-)

Lara and her tummy

Lara had a bad night's sleep last Friday, she was restless without really telling us what the problem was. I ended up spending the night with her, with us both sleeping on the floor in her room (she likes doing this, and would insist on us doing it when she's not poorly if I let her. It's quite good for my back, every once in a while!). She'd wake, shuddering with pain, and when I'd ask where it hurt, she'd point at her foot. I checked it over, and there was no bruising, and she didn't wince when I touched it, so I didn't think too much about it, and eventually we dropped off to sleep, although after a disturbed night, there was no way either of us was voluntarily going to get up at 6.30am on a Saturday to watch someone jump into the Thames, no matter how good the cause (sorry David Walliams!).
She had a good breakfast, but then went progressively downhill over the course of the day, still shuddering with pain from what we worked out to be stomach cramps. She barely ate anything all day, and when we tried calpol to see if that eased her pain, she just threw it back up. She's been very good at telling us when she's going to be sick, and so far *touch wood* we've always had a saucepan or her potty close at hand. (Over the course of the weekend, she displayed a definite preference for being sick into her potty rather than the pan, and she would insist that I hold her hair out of the way). I couldn't help but crack a little smile on one occasion on Sunday, she called for the potty.. "I'm going to be sick, Papa, potty!!!", and when I presented it (clean, I might add), she lifted her face from it after a few seconds and with a look of disdain that a teenager would have been proud of, stated "It's a bit smelly!".
Anyway, this upset tummy continued on Saturday evening and all day Sunday. She'd be OK at breakfast time, and eat quite well, but then the cramps would start, and all she wanted to do was lie on the sofa and watch TV, between bouts of loud (and upsetting for us to hear) moaning, and taking 20 minute naps. On Sunday night we decided it would be best if Lara slept in bed with me (and Buzz, it turned out) while Olga slept on the sofa, so that at least she might have a relatively undisturbed night.
Things weren't improving on Monday, and we were getting concerned about how little she was eating, so in the afternoon we took her to the GP, who reassured it appeared to be just a stomach bug, and to try and convince her to keep drinking as much as she could, and to try a little simple foods. Being told this by the doctor helped Lara understand that it would help her if she drank and ate something, and indeed by Tuesday she seemed to be over the worst of it. There was no calling for the potty, and she would even engage in conversation. By the afternoon she was happy to eat soup and bread, and it seemed like things were OK again. Last night though she still had some cramps and an attack of the screamy moans, so I took her downstairs to sleep on the sofa (we've already had me on her floor, her in our bed, this was the next place to try. After this I'd have her sleep on Mishka's bed.... (only kidding)). She slept well there, and we only woke at 8am, and she declared "I feel better now, can I go to nursery?". We felt it was still too soon, so she's been at home again today, and has been playing out in the garden for the first time since she started to feel ill. She seemed to have some cramps again after tea though, and got rather moany, but this might have been exhaustion, she went straight to sleep as soon as I put her in bed, without a book being read or a back being stroked (her latest thing she insists on).
So, I think she'll go back to nursery tomorrow, if she has a good night's sleep tonight, as she's been fine all day today and only went a little downhill after her tea.

David Walliams' Swim

It would have been remiss of us not to have cheered on David Walliams as he swam the length of the River Thames, given we live so close to it, so last Friday night Olga and I headed down to Marlow, where he was going to be ending his swim for that day. BBC's The One Show were there to cover it, and Angela Rippon herself was on hand..

After an hour's wait, the man himself arrived to great cheers, although the crowd were on the wrong side of the river to get a good view (he's there in the centre of the photo, in the big white towel:

But he did come along in an inflatable and give everyone a wave before heading off to whereever he was planning to sleep that night (the Compleat Angler hotel, just 100m down the river from where we are standing, and VERY posh).

We had planned to bring Lara along the following morning at 7am to cheer him on as he clambered back in, but Lara's tummy got in the way of that..

Francesca's Christening & Birthday party

Ahem, where were we? Yes, that's it, we'd come back from our three-night trip to Scotland on the sleeper. We loved it, and would really like to be able to take two weeks next summer to tour around the area properly.

Since then, there has been social events aplenty. A trip to Reading to see Anton, Becca, Eve and Tess (and to congratulate Mr & Mrs Leary!), and Lara has numerous invitations to birthday parties coming up. At the start of September we went to Marlow for the combined 1st birthday and Christening party for our friends' Ollie & Jo's second daughter, Francesca. It gave us all a rare chance to dress smartly:
Lara enjoyed stuffing her face, and Ollie and Jo had done a great job of putting on some entertainment for the kids, so the parents could relax for a while.
Lara's fondness for animal masks just gets stronger!

Tilehurst BBQ

Considering it's hardly been a summer for BBQs, it seemed appropriate when we went to Anton & Becca's house at the end of August for an afternoon BBQ, that Anton had to do the cooking under an umbrella, in the rain.
The sun did come out in time for dessert, which Lara, Eve and Tess loved (as did the grown ups!). I'm not sure what's going through Tess' mind in this photo though:
There was the obligatory dressing up for the kids:
And Lara has perfected the Cheeky Monkey look:

Thanks for a lovely afternoon! 

Pulling my finger out

Right, Armstrong, pull your finger out and get this blog back on track!