That was the decade that was

Another year draws to a close and for the first time in many years we are actually getting seasonal weather.  Snow and cold weather seems to be blanketing much of Europe, North America and little ol’ us and again the country grinds to a halt.  At least it makes everywhere seems a lot prettier, what a fantastic way to usher in the new decade.  Yes, the new decade!  Unbelievably another decade draws to a close and new one is just around the corner (or probably already here by the time you are reading this).  And what a decade it has been both personally and in world events.

The world has changed significantly during the noughties (not sure what the new decade will be called: Twenty-Tens; Tweens; Tenties probably won’t find out until the retrospective TV programmes and newspaper articles of 2019) almost as significantly as my life.  I don’t think that I need to re-iterate the major world events of the last ten years as I think we could name the most notable and infamous incidents.  From a personal point of view this decade as seen me promoted (twice – more later); buy a house; sell a house; fall in love; get engaged; get married and become a father.  I’ve visited a number of incredibly beautiful places around the world, made new friends, lost some friends, cemented older relationships and incredibly now support a team that has been in the Premier League and been seen in a F.A. Cup semi-final.

As mentioned above I have been promoted at work so as of the 1st January 2010 I will be Head of Live Operations at mediahouse, for IMG.  This will include responsibility for all our live programming clients , including Premier League (worldwide distribution), Football League (for the BBC) and ESPN to name a few.  It is an exciting position and as I will be moving to a five day week (although not necessarily Mon-Fri 9-5) it means I will be able to see Éowyn everyday which will mean so much more now she is becoming more aware as she is growing up.

We have been a little busy since the last update, hence the delay between this and the previous update so forgive me if I omit some of the finer details.  Like everyone much of the latter part of December has been gearing up to Christmas and all the malarkey that is associated with it.  Unfortunately (or fortunately depending on your point of view) Éowyn is still a little too young to appreciate all that is going on. although she did begin to take an interest in the Christmas tree and the presents underneath it.  The only decoration that is was interested in, though, was a Christmas bell.  For some reason she took a shine to it and kept taking it off the tree and either giving it to one of us or putting it in her toybox.

As befitting new parents we didn’t really go out and celebrate the way many of our single and younger friends did.  However we did get ourselves glammed up and her to Royal Holloway College for a Christmas Dinner Dance.  And so that we could enjoy ourselves my Mom (and Sister Liz) made the trip down (fortunately the Snow had eased by that point) and baby-sat for the evening.  Again I’m not sure who enjoyed themselves the most:  Lucinda and I, Éowyn or Nanny Fran and Auntie Liz?  It was a close call.

Nanny Fran stepped to the rescue for child-minding duties again over Christmas.  Being shift workers Bank Holidays (including Christmas) mean nothing in the jobs either Lucinda or I do, in fact they can be the busiest times for both of us.  This year we were both down to work Boxing Day (26th December for non-UK residents) and the day after.  So we decided to ask Nanny Fran to look after Éowyn for those days.  Therefore we decided to drive to West Bromwich on Christmas Day, have Christmas day with my mom and sister (and Éowyn’s Great-Great Uncle Albert), leave Éowyn with Nanny Fran and pick her up after our shifts had finished.  Although it was a lot of driving it was really nice and meant that we had two Christmasses.

As it was a little difficult to see Lucinda’s parents on Christmas day and drive to West Bromwich, we decided that we would have Christmas day with them and Lucinda’s brother on Christmas Eve.  So we invited them around our house and I cooked a roast pork (we didn’t want Turkey two days on the bounce) dinner and we opened presents.  We thank our lucky stars that we are both so close to our families and it is a shame that my family is not closer for such occasions, although Nanny Fran is seeing an awful lot of Éowyn recently, which we are most grateful for.

As for Éowyn she was obviously a little too young to understand Christmas, but she did see Father Christmas (with Jo, her child-minder) but was scared of him (fair enough, he is a bit of a strange character) and got into the swing of opening presents.  She wasn’t really bothered about the presents as such, but enjoyed ripping the paper off (although some people wrap their presents a little too officiously).  In fact she would rip the paper off, then rip it again and hand you each little bit.  That will soon change, no doubt.  We would like to thank everyone that sent us a card or bought us a present and especially to those of you who bought Éowyn a present, she is lucky to have you all, as are we.

I wish all of you a light filled 2010 and all the best for the coming decade.  In the words of Ann Landers:   ‘Let this coming year be better than all the others. Vow to do some of the things you’ve always wanted to do but couldn’t find the time. Call up a forgotten friend. Drop an old grudge, and replace it with some pleasant memories. Vow not to make a promise you don’t think you can keep. Walk tall, and smile more. You’ll look ten years younger. Don’t be afraid to say, ‘I love you’. Say it again. They are the sweetest words in the world.’

Peace and Love

Baggie and Lucy xxx

The Christmas Tree is up!

Yes, it is that time of year again and this time we have a Christmas tree and it is up and fully decorated!  We also have a Christmas look to the website, don’t worry it will only be here for a month!

Christmas as I am sure you will all agree is an expensive time of year, but ours is starting to tot up and we haven’t even bought any presents yet.  First our central heating decided that although it was the coldest night of the season, (-1°C) we wouldn’t be needing its services.  Thankfully it only affected the heating (the hot water was fine) so more layers and plenty of star-jumps were the only ways to keep warm.  That cost us £160!  Then it was new brakes for my car, plus service plus MOT.  Thankfully I pre-bought my first five services when I bought the car and if I MOT the car at the garage I bought it and have it serviced at the same time then the MOT is free.  Therefore I only had to pay for the brakes which being Honda cost me £210!  I hadn’t had the car back for 24 hours when some low-loader decided that I didn’t need the front of my car and ripped it off.  He/She/ They then decided that I didn’t need their insurance details and drove off.  The first I knew of it was when my next door neighbour knocked on the door bearing the bad news.  Obviously I have reported it to the police, but there is little they can do and as there are no other insurance details then I have to fork out the excess and have it on my insurance record.  Not a happy bunny!  So all in all, it has cost me £570 and I haven’t bought a present yet, so if you don’t get anything you now know why!

However I am thankful that if my car was to have been damaged with such force that at least there was no one in the car to get hurt, and we a bit of TLC from the bodyshop/ garage it will hopefully be as good as new.

So what does  Éowyn think of the festivities?  Well she is still a little young for it all.  She is more interested in getting into mischief.  Now she can walk she can get herself into many more places and move things with much more ease.  It is not unusual for her to empty the recycling bin in the kitchen and indeed place the recycling in the washing machine.  She has even learnt to shut the washing machine door and turn it on.  Will have to show her where the laundry bin is next!  She has a fascination with my lava lamp and keeps turning it on.  But her favourite items are the remote controls, narrowly pipping mobile phones into second place.  She understands what a remote control is for and is quite adept at turning channels, muting the audio or turning the TV/ DVD off just when the crucial moment or most interesting point is just about to happen.  In fact for two days we had been unable to find the remote control for the DVD/ freeview recorder.  We hunted high and low and even asked Éowyn to tell us where she had hidden it, to no avail.  Then Lucinda had a brainwave and we checked the recycling bin in the kitchen.  Not there.  Then Lucinda remembered that she had taken the recycling out the previous day.  So Dad has to crawl through the recycling in the wheelie bin and lo and behold there was the remote control.  Thankfully Lucinda had had such a brainwave else Tuesday morning it would have been in the back of the refuse lorry!  She’s a little tyke!

Unfortunately she has been a little under the weather today and this means that she becomes very clingy.  Which is nice in one way because you get lots of cuddles but overall bad because you can not get anything done.  Lucinda was at work today and last night Éowyn was up for nearly 3 hours.  We think it is her molars that are coming through so we can definitely empathise with her but it is ever so hard at 0300!  This has carried on throughout the day today which is a great shame as we had put the Christmas tree up last night and was hoping that she would be fascinated with it.  She gave it a cursory glance this morning but has promptly ignored it all day.  I hope that this bodes well for the rest of the festive season and we don’t find baubles disappearing off the tree and finding their way into the recycling.

I wish you all well with your Christmas preparations and hopefully see you all soon

Peace and love


These boots are made for walking!

The time to update this website has again eluded me over the last couple of weeks.  For this I apologise.  I think this is mainly due to adapting to Lucinda’s return to work.  Éowyn is also having to adapt to mommy’s return to work.  No longer has she the monopoly of mommy’s time, and now she has to spend whole days with daddy and at least once a week at Jo’s her childminder.  I think that Éowyn is adapting well (I suppose kids do) more so than her mommy, who has to cope with not being at ome with her baby as well as dealing with passengers and the world’s busiest international airport.  I love spending time with Éowyn although it is hard work and you do not get a minute to yourself; but it is so rewarding.  Taking her to Jo’s is still hard as she gets upset when you leave her, however it doesn’t last long and she is soon happy playing with Jo and the toys that she has to offer.  So much so that when you pick her up she is nonplussed when you arrive and only comes to you to show you the toys she is playing with.  It slightly upsetting but reassuring nonetheless.

Jo is excellent with Éowyn and very flexible with our hours.  However, as all childminders, she enjoys having the weekend off.  Unfortunately with the nature of both Lucinda’s and my jobs weekend work is a necessary evil.  Once every 6 weeks we are both at work for the Saturday and the Sunday.  Therefore an alternative has to be found: in steps Nanny Fran.  My Mum jumped at the chance to spend the weekend looking after her granddaughter.  Especially with my sister on holiday in the U.S.  Mum came down on the Saturday morning and stayed until the Monday lunchtime and I’m not sure who had the most fun.  Éowyn really enjoyed playing with Nanny Fran, playing with all her toys, making Rice Crispy cakes and showing off her newly mastered skill:  Walking.

Yes after many months of cruising and the odd step here or there, the 32 step epic at the manor house has become second nature.   She toddles all around the house and is rarely resorting to crawling.  Walking is so much easier, you keep your hands free to steal things and run off with them.  She was walking so much after our return form Puncknowle that we decided that it was time to get her feet measured and buy her some proper shoes.  In the UK there is only one place that you can really get that kind of service:  Clarks.  The service is excellent, the staff seem well trained and they even take a photo of your little one in their first pair of shoes.  For £30 it is the least one should expect!  Especially since they will only last about 6 to 8 weeks because a baby’s feet grow so quickly.  Time to win the lottery.

A belated congratulations to our friends Mark and Lou who had a little girl Abbygail Lily on the 3rd November.  We took Éowyn to visit and introduce her to her new little playmate. However, I’m not sure that she was too interested and seemed to be more intent on playing with Abbygail’s chair and when she finally decided to have a look she just poked poor Abygail. Fortunately no damage was done, we will have to teach her to be more careful. With her little friends she is usually more caring. When her friend Billy was crying she went up to him and stroked his hair saying, ‘Aarrrr’, and, again on another occasion when he was crying she walked over and picked his comfort blanket up and gave to him. So she does have empathic tendencies but perhaps she thought that Abbygail was a doll and was trying to find out what she was made of.

Christmas is nearly upon us and we are trying to be a little more prepared than we were last year.  We have even bought our Christmas Tree.  As you may recall from last year (or search in the archives if you are that bored!) we didn’t manage to get a tree put up for Éowyn’s first Christmas (the bad parents we are).  This was mainly due to not owning an artificial tree and not wishing to put up a real one with a small baby about.  This year we were determined not to let that happen and so we have been scouring the shops for a nice artificial tree.  We have decided on a pre-lit one so that there is a distinct lack of a trailing cables for our little technological terror (she has inherited her father’s love of techno-gadgets and seems to know instinctively how to switch them into a mode that is not referred to in the manual and requires a very specific and complicated series of button pushes) from pulling them over, switching them off or just chewing the cable.

I wish you all well with your Christmas shopping and I hope not to leave in as long to update you all next time.

Peace and Love