Saturday, 31 December 2016
20:29 | Posted by Caz | Edit Post
Tonight I've just put my little baby to bed, for the last time in the year of his birth.
I whispered sweet nothings to him in his ear about how loved he is, how special he has made this year, our baby, how he has completed us in the only way we can be completed. How this has been his year. His year.
Oh I feel so much regret now that it mattered even for a moment earlier on in this year when he was no longer a girl. Back when those scans revealed what we thought was going to be one thing, but turned out to be another. That is mattered a sonographer had got his gender wrong on the first look. Regret that is hit me as hard as it did and sent me down the path of a grief spiral once again. Yet another guilt of grief moment to carry along. Regret. It shouldn't have mattered and it certainly does not matter now. I feel so foolish that I worried at all his gender, because he was my last baby, could affect our bond. Because that boy is mine, he is him and I love him so.
And the end of 2016 feels significant, a year I'm finding myself wanting to cling on to. The year my last baby was born. His year. Maybe because this is it. 2017 sees the beginning of a brand new era for us. New baby days all done. Pregnancy days all done. No new babies to plan and prepare for. Now we're into the fully fledged childhood years! We're parents raising three rainbow beautiful boys. After Anabelle is becoming a subtitle Raising Rainbows.
Maybe because this year I really have to deal with it and make my absolute peace with it; the biggest 'it' I've buried my head in the sand about for so long, because we really are not having anymore babies, which means we are really really never having an earth daughter. Oh there is so much to explore my head with around that, but that is another blog for another time. 2017 will have to be my year for that. More conscious healing.
I remember feeling somewhat like this six years ago, as 2010 (click to open) drew to a close. Wanting to cling on to the year my first baby was born. Not wanting to pass into another year. Then, it felt like the symbolic change of the year was moving further away from her. Grief was still so so new and so so raw then. I had no idea what 2011 had in store. Of course 2011 gave us Alexander, another incredibly precious year, when the fledging whisp of healing began, but on the night of 31st December 2010 we couldn't see any rainbow and we certainly couldn't see any healing.
Oh how far we've come and I feel so blessed. Especially this year bringing another little baby home.
But tonight I'm feeling some bizzare juxtaposition. The end of 2010 hit me hard and I'm feeling a sad nostalgia as 2016 draws to a close. My first baby and my last baby. Their years.
2016 has been indescribably good to us. I may have started off the year very poorly with a series of colds between us all and pneumonia and all that for me, but the rest of the year more than made up for it!
Joining on the instagram "2016 Best Nine" photos this afternoon highlighted again the absolute sparkle and shine our little baby has added to our family this year, when all nine photos were from the second half of this year and he featured in all but two of them!
This year I have carried on my thing of noting down all the happy, important, funny, wonderful days and moments. From the big things, little things, every day things. I love looking back on them on New Years Eve now.
The highlights of my year 2016!
1st - horrible start to year with Xander's school burnt down to nothing. Xander's sad but cute response Initially quite interested in photos on FB to see what was happening until he realised it was very broken and fireman Sam couldn't rescue it this time and then took himself off to bed for 5 minutes saying he felt very sad and didn't like fire on his school. Poor baby!
3rd - playing tickle and raspberry monsters on the bed with both boys! Very excited small ones - Wound them up good and proper!
4th - the duplo barn Xander built for all his animals after our little animals brainstorm.
7th - first baby tiny scan. 8+1.
15th - lots of kisses from the boys leaving for work. Zac asking for 'another one'
25th - Xander back into school today, not being dazed and going straight to to play!
27th - Xander; I like Lily thought because she is the prettiest thing ever in the whole world! 😂
27th - Zac having his first bedtime wee wee in the potty.
28th - baby scan, 11+3, Due date 15th August 2016. Telling Xander and him smiling and saying 'I hope it's a sister'
30th - Zac in the pool - totally blown away by his confidence. Hasn't been in a pool for a year, and has only been in a few times in total his whole life. But today, with a woggle, he quickly learnt to balance himself, then kicked his legs and moved his arms to swim himself around - totally independent and awesome. So proud. Little natural water baby!
5th - X being really cute and told Zac off for climbing on me saying he had to be careful because there was a baby in my tummy!
6th - Zac surprising us knowing what 2,3,8 was on number jacks game!
9th - feeling so very poorly but loved hearing the boys play together from my sick bed upstairs.
10th - Xander lying on my tummy to give the baby a cuddle. ❤️
13th - sweet darling Small who went to find a wet wipe and then wiped my face because I was crying.
19th - the effort and time Xander took on his duplo house with Nana and Bampi. 4 hours before it was totally finished. Loved all the thought and ideas he put into it, the attic and the roof. extension for a toilet, dining room with table and chairs, steps up to the attic and a sunflower in the garden like Bampi's garden. Amazing!
22nd - Zac dancing along to the end of in the night garden! 'Daisy dancing'
26th - discovering Xander can read 1000!
7th - a new car for my birthday!
11th - Xander, shouting at my tummy; I love you baby! 😍❤️🌈
11th - Xander spelling at bath time with his bath letters. 'Mummy' but backwards!
12th - Crack of dawn conversations about childbirth with my 4 year old! Try to answer he questions that a c-sec won't leave me with a pouch like a kangeroo and that not every mummy needs to have babies out of tummies, some babies are born out of foo's at the bottom. Told him Belle born out of foo, and he nearly was but he got stuck so a Dr helped him out of my tummy, so Zac came out of my tummy and so will this one!
17th - most normal day since 6th Feb. Lolipops am, blooms pm, boating lake!
19th - the boys playing with their cousins and time at the boating lake, watching Zachy really get to grips with his scooter!
19th - Baby finally decided to be properly wiggly, so wiggly even Daddy felt it! The earliest for him.
23rd - Zac trying to tell me about his day at nursery when I arrived to pick him up - play friends, painting, then key worker prompted outside and he said garden!
25th - X is turning into such a thoughtful Big! Small was crying for his morning milk; X suddenly appeared next to bed with cup of milk for him! 😍
25th - lovely good Friday! Easter egg hunt. A drive, a nandos, another drive and a walk around Roath park - loved watching Zac on scooter - he has proper cracked it not and is super speedy, shouting Yee-Haa every time he zooms off! 😂
28th - lovely day at the farm with Sorreya Oscar and Celyn
31st - few days with Hannah and Katie. Dinosaur Land and swimming.
3rd - feeling better about being told girl and then it changing to boy after a very turbulent few days of emotions. Chuffed we have a boys name finally. Waiting on another scan now to say who baby is once and for all.
6th - Mummy and big day with X. Treetops crazy golf, Lego shop, chocolate cake and bus rides.
9th - the playhouse!
10th - day out with Sorreya buying Little its first little bits! Rainbow outfit and new playmat.
15th - naming Little Lucas Elias Morgan 💙🌈 22 weeks pregnant.
19th - Xander feeling Luc wriggle.
23rd - dancing with the boys to the superman song!
23rd - new armadillo city stroller for Zac!
24th - our together 10 years anniversary, and an evening at The Stuffed Dormouse.
24th - Sorreya's baby shower
30th - watching this alien baby move my tummy around!
1st - Mason and Isla's christening and a lovely day with friends.
2nd - lovely day in Plymouth including a wet weather walk around Burrator Reservior
5th - Bestie's baby boy Perkins born!
7th - train ride, treasure hunt and shopping in Cardiff.
15th - listening to Zac sing along to all the frozen songs.
17th - morning in Xander's nursery making a 2D rocket together. 💙
21st - this little piggy rhyme with the boys. Shrieking with laughter!
26th - Zac loving his Elsa dolly present for half birthday.
27th - boys enjoyed their gardening day with Bampi and then pouring water over each others heads!
29th - first day of holiday - blissful morning sat on westward Ho beach after a short stroll from the caravan. Really relaxing day!
30th - Bude swimming pool. Boys loving the waves and water slide. First times on water slide.
31st - Westward Ho beach, watching boys play in the sea puddle. Bowling in afternoon. Zac first time but getting only strike and winning game! Jon coming last haha!
1st - cinema to watch King fu panda. Zacs first time at cinema. Afternoon in Plymouth to play with cousins.
1st - Xander; 'When you go to work Mummy, you are a teacher and look after children, when Daddy goes to work he just disappears doesn't he!'
2nd - pirate crazy golf, go kart race cars, gnome garden.
3rd - wollocombe beach. Gorgeous family day and gorgeous family photo on an evening stroll later on. Perfect family holiday week!
11th - Luc 4D scan - so so like his brothers! 💙
11th - my baby shower afternoon tea at Cwrt Bleddyn.
20th - swimming with Small
30th - happy hands with small
30th - Tgi Fridays dinner time with Big
2nd - Mike and Jo wedding. Zac 'mummy princess dress, I lub it'
5th - Xander's sports day
7th - Xander coming out of school with 5 stickers and his teachers telling me how kind and helpful he's been all day!
9th - ITNG live! Zac's absolute mesmerization by it!
12th - cinema school trip with Xander ❤️ lovely message in Zootropolis film. Well my boy nearly made me cry on his school trip this morning. Decided while we were queuing for the bus to tell everyone that he had a sister called Belle but she died. But she was still in his family and he took flowers to her. I'm not sure where it came from. His TA responded beautifully too. 😢
18th- Xander's nursery graduation
19th - Our perfect Lucas Elias Morgan born, 7lb 6oz at 16.32. Completing our rainbow family. We couldn't be more thrilled!
20th - boys meeting their new brother. Gorgeous photo - my favourite of the year!
22nd - bringing Luc home.
29th - reading We're Going On A Bear Hunt with the boys!
30th - our first family of 5 afternoon out.
31st - watching the boys play in Grandma's garden. Football and then running into each others arms, calling out names for a big cuddle with eachother.
1st - Our 7th wedding anniversary. Cripple creek dinner and lolipops painting
3rd - Day in Cardiff and Jon ordering my eternity ring!
5th - new baby photo shoot with Jenny Healy
6th - St Fagans with Marie and Twins
8th - epic new paddling pool fun
11th - lovely day at the farm.
19th - the boys and the baby. Singing 'baby Luc I love you' to him in the moses.
28th - Folly Farm day out!
29th - Morgan Jones park Caerphilly splash park!
30th - winning a water babies course!
31st - mambo soft play and Cardiff bay beach with Xander.
1st - Xander starting reception
6th - Lucas first smile age 7 weeks. At Xander playing peekaboo with him!
18th - Seth's Dedication in Plymouth
28th - Zac being fabulous at potty training. No accidents at nursery all day. Day 6.
14th - Xander's 5th birthday!
15th - Xander's birthday day trip to Longleat
16th - Xander's Bumble Bee Transformers birthday party!
17th - reading Charlie and Chocolate Factory with Xander.
18th - Xander's family afternoon at school
18th - Costa Coffee with Zac.
19th - snoozing and snuggling in bed with Lucas
19th - Luc listening to Sugalump and the Unicorn, and smiling and really looking at book.
20th - Xander dressed as Charlie for school Roald Dahl day.
20th - the boating lake with Small and Little
25th - autumn walk and pictures
27th - Cardiff museum
28th - Broomstick School at Llanyrafon Manor
29th - Danny's 30th birthday trip to Plymouth
1st - Xander's truly spectacular parents evening. Kind and friendly, well-behaved, and above average throughout his baseline assessment - working in outcome 3 already and towards outcome 4 by the end of reception! Amazing! Grouped with year 1 pupils for maths.
4th - Xander's first reading book home!
5th - Bonfire Night!
6th - Luc's underwater photoshoot and Techniquest afternoon
6th - Luc's first little giggle - at his Daddy making funny noises and faces.
7th - the farm with small. Zac writing Z for Zac in sand!
9th - Xander singing 'When Santa got stuck up the chimney'
16th - Zac star of the day in nursery for Makaton signing.
25th - Zac getting his place in school nursery for January!
26th - Zac's birthday 'I three'
27th -Zac's birthday party!
28th - Zac pointing remote at tv - saying 'turn to Peppa' as of it is voice activated!
3rd - Zac's birthday day trip to @Bristol and ice skating
4th - Santa's magical post office in Cardiff bay
6th - Xander opening his reception Christmas concert and welcoming everyone.
10th - Zac 'Xander, where is uncle Danny's house' - Xander 'past the wavy roof in england'
10th - Reuben's birthday party day in Plymouth.
13th - Zachy - "I not cute, I gorgeous" 😂
17th - Christmas Day with Hannah
18th - Godmother to George at his Christening
21st - day out shopping with Xander and Luc
24th - Clearwell Caves FC visit
24th Zac singing jingle bells
25th -Christmas Day 2016. Lucas face of wonder at his light up rattle, Zac adoring his fairy and Xander loving his slime!
26th - Christmas dinner with the Villars family.
27th - 12 days of Xmas trail at Duffryn gardens.
27th - Buying Zac's school shoes.
28th - choosing furniture for Luc's nursery
28th - Zac's last day at Acorns.
30th - Christmas buffet with Sorreya Keith Oscar and Jac!
31st - Boating lake walk and scoot, Luc's last walk in the carrycot! Sob!
31st - whispering sweet nothings into Luc's year at bedtime as the magnificent year of his birth comes to an end.
One hundred and thirty five moments recorded, not to mention the ones I probably forgot to write down. But if I had to pick just one moment of all, from the entire year? It would be this one. My three rainbow boys, together for the very first time. After Anabelle Raising Rainbows. This was my 2016.
Wishing all I know a peaceful and joyous 2017.
Happy New Year.
Thursday, 29 December 2016
21:20 | Posted by Caz | Edit Post
Oh this boy. I'm so in love with him I could burst. We're absolutely adoring this age he is now. Still our little baby, but oh so interested, interactive, playing and discovering. He beams at us all day long - our happy smiley baby boy. He locks on to you as soon as you walk in the room now, he seems to instantly know when I am there and searches me out in the room. He shouts and stares to try and get your attention as you walk past him. Lucas just loves his Mummy, Daddy and brothers.
Lucas is awake more and longer now; awake for anything up to two and a half to three hours before needing a nap. Some days it feels like he hardly naps at all when his sleeps can be as little as 15-20 minutes. But others times he will sleep much longer. He is still so unpredictable like that. Of course he sleeps the best during the day when I can just sit and hold him; and I love those times, all snuggled, feeling his weight curled and so totally relaxed against me. So when I can, I do, totally soaking it up and spoiling him and indulging me! I know how quickly these baby days will pass us by, already passing us by!
This month wasn't super great for night-time sleep. The four month sleep regression struck again! It could've been worse - paling into comparison of Zachary's regression for example - but still! Now in the last week he's slept through four nights in a row again, so maybe just maybe we're coming out the other side properly now?! Who knows. These babies like to keep us on our toes.
Darling baby Lucas, you are five months old and 15lb 12oz big. This month you have discovered your voice and your toes. Your toes are your absolute favourite thing at the moment; all day long you are reaching for them, pulling them, pulling your socks off, and trying to get your toes in your mouth! You are getting all the noisier too; shouting and gurgling and cooing. You've discovered how to put your lips together to blow raspberries, bubbles, and make more mumbly noises. I love listening to you chatter away and tell your stories. You're learning the art of a conversation now and will often answer Mummy with your little voice. Heart swell.
Little giggles have turned into little belly laughs and you are the most adorable thing. You're already quite ticklish and chuckle and gurgle away as we tickle your tummy! I don't remember your brothers being quite so ticklish when they were still so little.
It was so special sharing your first Christmas with you this week. Your favourite thing about presents was of course trying to eat the paper - but you've loved the actual presents too - your light up rattle was a real hit, a delightful mix of trying to watch the colours as you move it but so desperate to get it into your mouth to have a good old chew! A visit from Father Christmas means suddenly you have lots more toys to play with (and for Mummy to put away!) and have had your first go in the Jumperoo too. As predicted it looks like you're going to love it - bouncing away on your feet!
You are that bit older than your brothers were on their first Christmas so you have been so much more involved - even sitting with us for Christmas dinner in the highchair for the first time! I cannot believe another few weeks from now we'll have to start to think about giving you food!
Lucas you are getting so big now and ready to do so much more; although you are still so happy led on your playmat exploring toys, your toes and watching the world go by too. Too happy in some respects! Even though you have shown us you can roll around, (we had one evening when you rolled front to back and back to front many times in quick succession), you are definitely choosing not to go too far since! You're happy when you're on your back, on your front or on your side so currently have no reason to try and change your position that much than you already do. Not that I'm in any rush for you to be on the move, baby movement = additional chaos so I'm enjoying this relative quiet while it lasts! Haha!
But you're getting stronger. You are beginning to sit so much more steadily on our laps now - holding your head up without getting tired for longer and longer. You adore being propped up on pillows or cushions to sit up and see - trying to lift yourself off them to sit up even further! You love being pulled to sitting when someone holds your hands from lying down. You always seem so pleased with yourself and excited; you can feel you're anticipating the move, tensing, lifting your head up and making yourself ready to go. You're getting so clever little baby!
This next month is going to have to be the month Mummy finally puts the seat on the buggy instead of the carrycot on your wheels. Here I am clinging on to this piece of newborn-ness still, but I'm going to make myself move you in the New Year. You still love the carrycot, and travel around all day in it quite happily. You love it when the hood is down, looking around, but you're ever so slightly too big now, you're ready for a more grown up way to travel. I've stretched you long enough! You have a new toy ready for your buggy bar and I'm looking forward to snuggling you into the seat with the fleecy foot-muff for the winter. I think you're going to love sitting up in the buggy to look around even more than you do lying down in the pram! It might be harder to get to your toes strapped in though!
This next month we're going to be decorating and make your nursery ready for you. Its being repainted and re-carpeted just for you, and you're getting new furniture now too - not quite so the recycled nursery from your brothers after all! I'm so excited to make it pretty for you but it will be ever so strange moving you to sleep into your own room. I'm going to treasure these last few weeks of my little baby in his Moses bed next to me.
Ah growing up boy.
I cannot believe we'll be whizzing towards your half birthday within weeks. How can you possibly have been here for nearly half a year already?! 2016 has been so good to us, it gave us you, beautiful you.
You light up our world, Baby Little.
We couldn't love you, any of you, more! 💙
Wednesday, 21 December 2016
23:03 | Posted by Caz | Edit Post
Our lovely Zachy Small is three! There is no way Zachary feels anywhere near big enough to be three mind you! My small. Still my Small, he really is a doot for his age; 89cm tall, still wearing 18-24 month trousers and only just going in to 2-3 on top. Only a size 6 shoe. So Small, yet a month from now starts his school nursery journey!
He doesn't seem at all big enough - at his nursery starter meeting last week the other Rising 3's seemed to tower above him! The uniform shops seem to agree he is too small too - hand-me-downs from Xander's nursery start are ridiculously oversized in 3-4 and so new uniform is being bought - I've been struggling to find 2-3 uniform still in stock - so bits and pieces are coming from a few different places. But we're getting there, jumpers and tshirts are bought. Trousers and shoes we'll think about after Christmas now.
I'm as nervous for him starting nursery as I was for Alexander.
I thought it would be easier to let the apron strings unravel a bit this time around - but it proves that different children give you different worries and it is no easier with the nerves of starting school at all! With Xander (click to open) it was all about my own resistance to change, letting him go, worrying about others looking after him for half a day every day, I worried about him being ready of course, but I knew on the whole he would be ok; he had that kind of personality and he gelled fairly well in most situations. My compliant and easy going little boy.
This time around I know the team that will be looking after Zac. They're vivacious and dedicated and there are no worries there, although I'll admit I'm not really ready to share him that bit more! Still I feel unnerved that he has to grow up. I worry that he isn't really ready. I worry that we're rushing him. Even more than I worried that Alexander wasn't ready. Zachy is less easy-going than his older brother, much more sensitive, quick to react, quick to be upset and very much still a toddler. A baby. Oh how he will change so very quickly when he starts in school. All of a sudden he will grow up too much I'm sure. Thrive just as his big brother did after all my nerves of him starting school nursery. I hope so anyway!
This is since the arrival of your baby brother. You are a Big Brother now and you love it! On your first visit to the hospital to meet him you couldn't take your eyes off him. In the beginning you called Lucas 'it' - but in the most adorable affectionate way; requesting of us that 'I hold it'. When he was brand new you didn't like it when he cried. He was too noisy!
You make us so proud in how you care for your baby brother, you are always talking to him and giving him cuddles, or proudly telling strangers when we're out and about that he is your Baby Luc. Your Baby. So often you and Xander fall out now about whose baby brother Luc is - you not accepting that he is actually baby brother to both of you!
There really is so much to tell you - you've had an amazingly busy six months. Learning and growing. Changing. You are so chatty to everyone. To a complete stranger in a lift, or a queue, or the cashier at a till, other children playing at the park, you'll turn around to and say 'I'm Zachary' or 'I'm Zachy'. Your vocabulary has exploded all the more and the way you talk has changed, more grown up. Nearly everyone can understand everything you say now. It felt like your speech grew up overnight when Lucas was born.
You have these adorable little phrases. Some are beautifully reminisent of things that Xander used to say when he was the same amount of big as you. Things like 'I not sleepy, it good morning' to his 'I not sleepy, I wake up'. You still make a 'b' sound when you should say 'v' - but it makes for the cutest expressions. 'I lub you' 'It too heaby'. 'Seebeeseebees' for CBeebies. You like to tell us who you want to talk to, most days I hear 'I want to talk to Mummy'. You are already asking 'Why?', which feels way earlier than Xander's 'Why' stage.
You hate loud noises. Genuinely petrified of crowds shouting and screaming, noisy parties and hand driers in toilets. It is ironic really when you can make the most piercing scream that goes absolutely through me every time you make it.
You're no longer that keen on having your photograph taken, unless you are caught in exactly the right mood! You're going through that phase. Or at least I hope its a phase because you have very snap happy parents - wrong family boyo! At the moment I'm winning through bribery and corruption or stealth photos! Haha!
You love swimming. You are a little fish. So confident already and have been since before you were two and a half - I really should've have had this on your last blog update. You surprised us all on a family swim one day - a woggle around you and off you went, kicking your legs, trying to use your arms and speedily travelling through the water. You totally blew us away! You've started swimming lessons now and now you'll swim around with a mini woggle under each arm instead of a big one around your tummy!
You my boy are so physically brave and fearless. You love the challenge of climbing and bouncing. I'm absolutely convinced you will be the first of my children to break a bone. Just a few months ago we turned around at the farm to find you dangling by your arms from some pretty high monkey bars. Needless to say Daddy dashed over to catch you before you let go. Gulps from Mummy. You will turn me grey!
You are getting so independent and are as determined as ever! Absolutely refusing help now until you ask for it if you have decided that you will do something by yourself. It amuses me how much you want to try doing for yourself compared to your big brother who would be happy to still let me to absolutely everything for him!
Zachy you are such a sensitive soul. You can be such a Jekyll and Hyde; you'll even tell us if you're feeling Happy Zachy or Grumpy Zachy! You're sensitive to the way others interact with you, you are a child who loves his own space to play and sometimes needs that space away from others. Sometimes you really struggle if someone invades your space. But equally you love the joy of the game with other children too. You're still learning how to interact with the world. You show such beautiful concern for others when you can see they are upset - you come along and ask what is the matter, or pat someone shoulder to show your concern.
You're growing up far far too quickly. In just a few weeks you will start nursery class at school! It is going to be so exciting, new adventures, new friends, new things to learn. More big changes!
You are precious and brilliant and fabulous Zachy,
and don't you ever forget it.
We love you Small xXx
Monday, 12 December 2016
22:24 | Posted by Caz | Edit Post
This year we're changing our Christmas routine.
Even a year ago I wouldn't have believed I could ever feel it was the right change to make. To be honest, I'm not sure it is the right change to make.
We're not going up to the cemetery Christmas Day.
Instead we're going to go up with Anabelle's garden gift things on Christmas Eve afternoon.
The guilt is already in the pit of my stomach, like we're cutting our daughter out of Christmas. Doing something we promised we'd never do. Not doing something we promised we'd always do.
Not going to her on Christmas Day.
Christmas has been bothering me for weeks.
The nagging feeling that it wasn't fair on the boys to rush their Christmas morning, or clock-watch, the potential of their mother getting stressed and anxious and snappy to get out of the house by a certain time and up to their sister so we had time to fit everything in before cooking dinner.
So I floated the idea to Jon at the weekend that maybe we should go to Anabelle on Christmas Eve. This year to see how it felt. To see if it could fit and become what we do at Christmas.
That maybe while the boys are so young their entire Christmas morning or even the day at home should be the priority.
Not rushing them, rushing presents, rushing getting them dressed, rushing up there, and rushing back home. Not giving ourselves time-pressures on Christmas Day that would threaten to bubble and boil and spoil. I don't want to rush my time with Belle up there, and I don't want to rush my time with the boys at home.
So this year we're making a change.
It feels the wrong thing to do and the right thing to do all at the same time. It feels like maybe a slippery slope. I don't know.
This year we're so excited for Christmas. Baby Lucas's first Christmas. Its a big deal. I've already enjoyed dressing him up in the novelty Christmas outfits, my little baby Elf, and his little Christmas Jumper. I've chosen what I'll want him to wear on Christmas day and the 'My First Christmas' pyjamas he'll wear to bed Christmas Eve. And of course for the older boys too. Wanting to make it magical for them.
It has taken us years to reach excited. For those first four years we went through the motions, mostly treading water, knowing that Boxing Day would wipe me out completely after holding it together Christmas Day. It has taken us all these years to reach this point and it had to be a conscious effort to do it. Deciding to try so very hard to embrace Christmas.
Only because of the boys. An Alexander that understood Christmas deserved a Mother who did better at it. Didn't crash at some point within it.
Year five was a bit hit and miss. But last year, her sixth Christmas, we managed it, a happy build up AND an entirely happy Christmas day. A corner had been turned. Somehow I felt like we had this whole Christmas thing sorted out now, managing the the turmoil, successfully riding the low without getting dragged under for the first time in six Christmas'.
But now, even as we approach her seventh Christmas this time of year is still surrounds us in some turmoil. Still ever aware of all that we're missing. The little girl party dresses and shoes in your face everywhere, the cute pink and sparkly Christmas jumpers and matching Mummy and Daughter Christmas print dresses that are all the rage at the moment. It stings and hurts as much as it ever did and always will. The things I can never do with the boys.
So maybe I didn't have it quite so sorted out as I thought last year. Because attempting to make a change is hard, leaving me jittery and not really knowing how I'll react to it until it is done. Maybe we should be going up there Christmas Day. I really don't know. I feel torn and guilty. Mostly just wishing we didn't even have to contemplate grave visits for our daughter at all.
Trying to fit four children into Christmas when we can only see three. Trying to be fair to everyone.
Saturday, 3 December 2016
23:17 | Posted by Caz | Edit Post
I'm going to say it again. Another month has WHIZZED by! It is going so fast that he is already four and a half months before I've found a moment to type up his blog!
Lucas really is such a happy gorgeous baby. He only even has to half smile at me and I melt; it is so easy to enjoy him. I've been lucky with them all to be fair - none of the boys have been difficult babies - but Lucas seems especially content.
My Little. The only fuss he makes is hunger and tiredness.
My Little. The only fuss he makes is hunger and tiredness.
He is happy to sit and play in his chair or led playing on his mat, exploring his toys and just watching the world going on around him. So easily pleased with just having company. He has spent the last month discovering how to play. Reaching out for his toys, feeling them with his fingers, grabbing, pulling toys to his mouth. He adores spending time on his new playmat especially; that was a good recent buy!
Beautiful baby Lucas. You are four months old. Four months! You are growing and changing, becoming more and more the little person and not just the little baby. Getting nosier and nosier. You just want to sit up now and look around - every time we try to recline you in our arms you are pulling your head up as if to say 'Let me see, let me see'!
You are interested in everything. Especially your brothers. You so clearly LOVE their attention now, excited looks of adoration across your face whenever they talk to you! You stare at them so intently. And boy do they so obviously love you too. You are THEIR baby! The three of you absolutely melt me together. The Morgan boys.
The world is beginning to amuse you. You give the most beautiful beaming smiles, and oh you've started to chuckle. Tiny little giggles that we're just waiting to turn into wonderful huge big belly laughs. Your first laugh this month was for Daddy. He was pulling funny faces and making funny noises and you chuckled. Beautiful delightful boy! There is something that is so infectious about a happy baby.
At four months old you are 14lb 5oz and now comfortably into your 3-6 month wardrobe. Your looks are beginning to change and I think you're starting to resemble Zachy more and more as a baby. Predictably, like your brothers over the last month you more or less completely lost your hair. Now at four (and a half) months your hair has started to grow back but it is so fair you still look bald. Just like your brothers around the four month mark!
This month you have started to put weight through your legs and push to stand ever so briefly on our legs. You are getting stronger and stronger. On the floor now you are ever so quick to roll on to your side, I keep waiting for you to flip right over on to your tummy but that pesky arm is still in your way!
Your learning how to use your arms and hands, and hand-eye co-ordination to grab things infront of your to explore. You reach out now to touch and feel. You've enjoyed looking at your 'That's not my books' really pushing your hand over the pages. You love grabbing toys now and looking at them or moving them around in front of you. Your favourite toy this month has been your playmat and the light up turtle and soft feely book that hangs from it.
Daily routine is still much the same as last month with generally four naps of varying length throughout the day. Some days you'll nap for only 20 minutes or so at a time, others you'll sleep for two hours - it is so hard to predict. I know you would nap for far longer if I was able to hold you while you slept, but baby you are the youngest which means you rarely get the luxury of being cuddled for an entire nap. Somebody always needs Mummy.
Night sleep was going so well - too well - for three weeks or so you had consistently started to sleep through and I think Mummy counted her chicken's a bit too soon! And then you had a little cold - and maybe a four month sleep regression - but for the last two weeks there has been at least one wake up a night again, some nights two or three! Oh it could be worse, way worse and one/two wake ups is nothing at all really - but it is surprising how quickly you get used to getting a full nights sleep again even after only three weeks! Last night you didn't wake me up until 5.00am so I'm kind of crossing my fingers you're going to start stretching out again - but now if we could get your brothers to quit their wake-ups too then we'll be well away. Horrible winter germs.
Your next update is already fast approaching and we have your exciting first Christmas month ahead of us. I'm so looking forward to seeing how mesmerised you are by all the lights and glitter and sparkles! What will you have discovered by month five?
My wonderful squidgy baby. Grow up slowly. In love with you.
Monday, 21 November 2016
22:16 | Posted by Caz | Edit Post
It was so unexpected, such a shock. We had no reason to think she was poorly; only two weeks ago she had had her annual health check and booster jabs at the vet - all was fine, she was fine.
Tuesday evening she curled up on my left leg while I had the baby on my right. I took a 'selfie' of her with no idea it would be her last photograph. After everyone was in bed, including me, Jon had a big play-fight with her and was left with the battle-scars to prove it. Something that hadn't happened for a long time in the post new-baby days. Her last play.
Although Jon didn't find her until Wednesday early evening, we think she must have died sometime during the early hours, the nighttime, of Wednesday morning. After her last cuddle, last photograph, last play.
That night Jon had slept downstairs because Lucas was under the weather and very likely to end up sleeping in bed with me. I wonder at what point she stopped sleeping on his legs in the night and went into her hammock. At least she wasn't quite alone at the end, even if we didn't know it. I hope she didn't know it - she looked like she had so peacefully passed in her sleep.
I still feel terrible that we didn't notice Wednesday morning, her there sleeping in her hammock under her scratch post. Her scratch post, under the stairs partially behind the armchair; in sight but out of sight, her quiet spot.
Wednesday mornings are manic; sorting out Xander to go off with my Mum to school complete with his homework bag, school bag, swim bag. Sorting Zac to go off to nursery with all the spares he could possibly need incase he has a bad potty day. Feeding and dressing a little Luc and chucking food and water down for Fiz. Its a stress getting out of the door early enough to get Zac to a nursery breakfast. We whizz around. In all the commotion I couldn't remember seeing Fiz that morning, but that is no different from any Wednesday morning in my rush. Jon said he saw her on her hammock in the morning, but just assumed she was still snoozing. Why would he have any reason to think differently? Lie-ins weren't out of the ordinary for Fiz!
|When she was tiny!|
But while I was still at Xander's swimming lesson with the three boys and Mum in tow, Jon returned from work and realised Fiz hadn't moved from her curled up comfortable spot in the hammock. She'd gone. I came home to find Jon incredibly upset - and I just knew he was going to tell me someone had died, but didn't for a minute expect him to say Fiz. I feel so sorry that she led there all day unnoticed - even though I know it would've been traumatic for the children had the discovery been any other way. At least Jon finding her in an otherwise empty house meant we could shelter them.
|Her 9th and last birthday.|
Only nine and half years old, young for a house-cat, it did not occur to us to consider she may die yet. I honestly expected for her to be with us for at least another six plus years.We phoned the vets and took her there to arrange her cremation. Cried many tears and said our goodbyes.
Once upon a time I wouldn't have understood why someone was so upset about their animal. I'd never had a pet before Fiz. Of course this hurt doesn't remotely compare to the grief we already carry with us every day, it is but a drop in the ocean; we've been through worse and we'll be ok when our low subsides. But none-the-less, we're feeling so very sad and cut-up about her loss. These have been teary days. Fiz was one of us, our fur-baby. She deserves our goodbyes. She had been such a comfort to us so often and it didn't feel like it was her time to go. So please indulge me as we adjust to Fiz no longer being with us.
It is only now in her absence I realise just how much space she actually took up in our hearts and home. She was everywhere.
The scratch post behind the armchair, where she died. The food bowls with left-overs still in. The food box still in the cupboard under the sink. The cat hair on the curtains, on the carpet, all over the rainbow rug, cat hair we were blind to before. The scratches all over the drawers in our wardrobe where she once got stuck. The wrecked arms and bottoms of the chairs where she had clawed. The frayed carpet on the bottom step. The claw marks on the carpets.
The space she took up on the bed resting against our legs. The silence of her bell, not realising how that sound filled the day before. The silence of her miaow begging for a tap to be turned on in the bath or her bowls to be filled. The thud from upstairs when she jumped off the bed. The space on the bay window sill where she slept, sunbathed, or ran to greet us when she heard the car on the drive. The silence of her nightly ritual of carrying her favourite 'mousey' around and miaowing after everyone else had gone to bed. Mousey that she had had since a kitten.
Her no longer trying to invade soft places, padding on legs, our dressing gowns, the baby blankets. No longer arguing with her about coming out from under the boys beds at their bedtime. No longer finding her curled up on the boys chair in the playroom or sunbathing on the rainbow rug. No longer finding her snoozing on the bed. No longer having to shout 'Watch the cat' whenever the front door is open or strategically closing it behind us. No longer having to worry about how to rearrange the bathroom to fit her litter tray in as Lucas now needed the box bedroom. No longer having to worry about arranging kitty-care when we go away - only hours before we found her I had text my Mum to ask her to feed Fiz the weekend when we go to my Godson's christening. No naughty cat chewing on the Christmas tree and knocking baubles off this year.
|Her first photo - 20th June 2007|
Remembering when we went to get her from a farm. 20th June 2007. Our home became her home. Me, initially unbothered either way if we had a cat/pet or not but so quickly falling in love with that tiny tiny little kitten. Her mother had died so she was hand-reared from birth and had only ever known human contact. Remembering how she loved to be rocked and held just as if she was a human newborn baby. Remembering even now how she liked to be held the very same way. Remembering how we named her - The Tweenies. Remembering when she could fit in the palm of Jon's hand. Remembering her kitten collar was still in with my jewellery and comparing it to the collar we took off her as we left her at the vets to keep.
Remembering that we used to give her a bath and that she even enjoyed playing in the water when she was little, chasing bath toys. Remembering why she was a housecat - although interested in the outdoors, in those kitten days she never ventured far from home - just up the path and back - and would be outside the front door crying as soon as it was shut - we decided to keep her in and out of the outdoor world harms way.
Remembering that we used to give her a bath and that she even enjoyed playing in the water when she was little, chasing bath toys. Remembering why she was a housecat - although interested in the outdoors, in those kitten days she never ventured far from home - just up the path and back - and would be outside the front door crying as soon as it was shut - we decided to keep her in and out of the outdoor world harms way.
Remembering the time we got locked out with her in our arms, the car journey to my Dad's work with her loose on my lap (as a passenger) to recover some keys to get back in. Remembering the day of her great escape on to my parents roof when we lived there. Remembering she was a cat that had her birthday celebrated with presents, Christmas too.
Realising the bizzare conicidence that she also died on the 16th, to go off for cremation on the 21st and her ashes returned to us on the 28th; numbers that were already so ingrained in us with Belle. Realising they also fall on Wednesday's and Monday's albeit a different month and a different year. Realising in the messed up world we had more time, more photos, more memories with our cat than our daughter. Realising how well she adjusted to two house-moves and children - undoubtedly less showered of attention with each boy arrival but loved by us all in buckets. Realising from the 851 photographs we had taken of her just how much Xander especially adored her.
Over the next few weeks we'll arrange our final special goodbye and sprinkle her ashes with Belle in her garden. Finally having her successful great escape into the outdoors.
30th April 2007 - 16th November 2016
Wednesday, 2 November 2016
14:49 | Posted by Caz | Edit Post
There is nothing like a new baby to make you reflect just how grown up the biggest child in the family is. Alexander is now five. Five whole years since he was a small baby like Lucas. Time really really does move so quickly.
I find myself feeling quite emotional when I look back over his birthday slideshows; my annual memoir of the year passed. All the wonderful photos that show how he has changed, the things he’s done, the places he’s been, the things he has learnt and the memories we have made over these last five years.
Our first rainbow. He makes us so proud.
Maturing all the time, he is thoughtful and sensitive. Becoming more and more the deep thinker; beginning to ask us about lifes bigger questions, about babies, about life, about death, the world around him, how things are made. He is so ready to know and learn and interested in everything.
Xander continues to thrive at school, finishing nursery class with the most awesome end of year report and is thoroughly enjoying Reception. Starting full-time school (link) felt like an end of an era for us at home, the end of his infancy and the start of an exciting new chapter for him. Our grown up boy. The Reception teacher is as enthusiastic and brilliant as his nursery team and Xander is so clearly engaged at school. But boy he has been tired and struggling with the full-time aspect. The whole of September was pretty horrendous at home for tired meltdowns. Quite the Jekyll and Hyde at times. Although he has started to get used to it now and October saw definite improvement, Thursdays is his wall and we know about it after school towards the end of the week. Back to school after half term today and it was pretty clear how exhausted he was again after the week off and then back to it. School is a full-time job and he is still so little really!
Once upon a time a baby, now a school boy. So much growing in five short years. Please time slow down, my Big is getting so big!
Darling Xander. We’ve had such a wonderful time celebrating your fifth birthday. You had mentioned your fifth birthday nearly every day since your fourth; I hope it lived up to your year-long expectations! You made plans. You wanted a Transformers party and didn’t deviate from it, you wanted Nana to make you a Transformers cake. So Transformers it was.
We invited Bumblebee Bot to visit you at your party which you thoroughly enjoyed, although we discovered you were not fooled – you later told Nana that you knew it wasn’t the REAL Bumblebee and that he was a man dressed up in a costume, because you could see his hair coming out at the back. But then you are never easily fooled my boy and definitely bright and switched on.
You are so eager to learn. You talk incessantly now, always asking questions and trying to discover everything there is to know about everything. You’ve mastered the art of persuasion absolutely and have an answer or ‘solution’ for everything to try and make things go your way!
Tonight we’ve had parents evening at school and inquisitiveness is paying off; you’re happy, well-adjusted, settled, well-behaved and doing so well – scoring within Outcome 3 in your Reception baseline and working towards achieving Outcome 4 at the end of this school year. I know this means very little to you, but it is fantastic for your age! Being happy and trying your very hardest in school is all we want from you but we are so pleased and proud of everything else too. Well done little man!
At five your favourite things are still Transformers Rescue Bots (of course), as well as little ‘big boy’ Lego. One of your favourite places to go is the Lego shop. You recognise when you’re in Cardiff now and always ask if we can go to the Lego shop while we’re there. You are so creative with the Lego. We’re always so impressed with what you build, just from your own design – you seem to have a natural flair!
Just a few of the things you’ve been really interested in since your last update; electricity and what things work with electricity, space and rockets and going to the moon when you’re a grown up, more recently asking us what makes a baby and who came out of whose tummy, and death. Still asking more and more complex questions about your sister and death.
You can be so funny now, even when you don’t mean to do. Over the last few months I have been noting down some of the things you’ve said, and they definitely need recording here for you to read when you are older:
- · Mummy, when the baby comes out will you go back to your normal size?
- · Mummy, when you go to work you’re a teacher and look after children, but when Daddy goes to work he just disappears doesn’t he?!
- · Calling Nana, Nana Villians (her surname is Villars)
- · I referred to you children as ‘your children’ to Daddy – you piped up with – Mummy I am your child because I came out of your tummy.
- · Talking about people who make rockets with Daddy. Daddy said you needed very smart people. You replied ‘I was very smart when I wore my graduation clothes’ – Daddy didn’t mean that kind of smart!
- · You asked who planted flowers around town. Daddy said ‘council workers’ to which you said a totally random ‘Never heard of it’.
- · Calling testicles – testiballs.
- · I can do magic Nana and make things disappear. Watch, you say, as you take a massive bite of a banana to make it disappear.
- · Telling us you need to listen to Daddy’s music to practice for when you are a Daddy (by which you mean Metallica or Queen or the like!
In your starting school blog (click to open) I said that it felt like the end of your infancy. The signs of you growing up are there. Things you used to love, even only six months ago, now appear to babyish for you. Like tots classes when I take you along with Zachy; six months ago you still got stuck right in, now, you sit on the fringe and appear self-conscious at times with the babies and toddlers, only joining in for the more grown up or interesting parts or to take a baby under your wing.
And you are grown up! Your new little brother has shown me just how Big you are. He is so small and you feel like a giant next to him! You are revelling in being the ‘biggest of all’ brother. You are so gentle and loving with Lucas, you talk to him all the time, telling him how cute he is. Lucas loves you and gave you his very first proper smile, of course you felt super proud about it. You love to look after your brothers – although this sometimes comes across as being the third parent! You can be quite the bossy-boots with poor Zachy now, your policing or ‘I’m the biggest’ dealing of a situation ending in screaming and tears. But on the flip side you can be so encouraging and generous towards him too, and protective – often praising him or giving in to him and giving him the toy he wants and is demanding from you. I adore that kindness in you. You boys are so often one extreme or the other with each other now, playing and shrieking together beautifully in a shared game or fighting like brothers do. But still brothers in arms, my three musketeers, the Morgan boys. I still love watching you be a big brother.
Five years ago I introduced you to the world with this photo (click to open) .
You were so small back then. My baby. Our miracle.
Five years of healing your Mama’s heart, stitching together their broken bits. Filling it with colour. The first baby we got to keep.
Darling boy, we love you. Always.
Enjoy every minute of being five!
- After Anabelle - Raising Rainbows. I'm Caz, Mummy to beautiful angel Belle and my wonderful rainbow boys, Xander, Zachy and Luc. Wife to Jon. Twitter @cazem Instagram @cazzyem
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