Saturday 15 December 2012

Christmas Time, Mistletoe and Vom...

Evening all! Before I showcase my cherry tree treasures, it's time for an update. And maybe the above picture which hangs in our hallway should actually say: Chaotic Life at the Seaside...

What do you want to hear about first? How I did my back in last Saturday and have been hobbling and bent over like an old woman? How I was in so much pain on Saturday afternoon I thought I would be sick? How I am getting through more frozen peas than David Haye on a trolley dash at Iceland?

Or what about how we had to endure a disastrous 2.5 hours to Stratford Upon Avon on Sunday for Christmas dinner with the inlaws (Stratford is about half way). Probably the WORST day to travel when one is so ill with chronic lower back pain. My leg was numb and I had pins and needles in my right buttock (TMI but I was seriously bad when we set off).

To make things worse, we were an hour into our journey when the Prince decided to projectile vomit all over every single garment he was wearing, as well as the floor. Marvellous. Utter precision.

Cue The Husband, frantically trying to pull over on a busy dual carriageway, and me desperately trying to get out of the car to drag the kid out before he carried on. But realising I couldn't even lift my leg out of the car. Or bend over to get him out of the car seat.

So I started crying (from the pain and frustration). The Princess started crying (she has a sickness phobia and was freaked) and the Prince chundered some more. Then he started crying. All Cried Out? Alison Moyet, you have nothing on us, believe me.

We entered the pub and felt fraught, stressed and sick of the journey we'd had (if you'll pardon the pun). We carried the Prince inside, wearing a small pair of red Mickey Mouse pants, a scarf wrapped around his body and his sister's pink sheepskin mittens covering his feet.  In subzero temperatures too. A comedy moment and we looked like The Odd Family (whoever they

But when we entered the pub and saw this, all felt calm and bright.

Smiling through the pain and drugged up
(me, not the Princess)

The mother in law had kindly stopped to buy the Prince some new clothes on the way as they arrived before us and the drinks in the pub were on ice and everyone was lovely (mother in law had explained the situation. Our life always contains an element of chaos it seems.)

After lunch we walked around and visited Shakespeare's birth place:

Peeking through the window!

Peeking through other people's windows too. Naughty.

In other news I have been busy eating cheese and drinking wine. Which means I am having interesting dreams.

Also been enjoying beach walks.

Wrapping a zillion presents.

Trying to work from home and meeting tight deadlines, with a three-year-old who has other ideas. Believe me it is VERY hard.

Look. At. Face.

I always resort to bribery and temptation to get peace and quiet.

Licking his lips (he hasn't tried them yet...)
Look at me, like the Childcatcher from Chitty Chitty Bang Bang...
 Drinking cocktails with one of my bezzy mates. On a school night. Yikes.

And walking off the hangover the next day (and walking off a gargantuan pub lunch.)

Enjoying our advent calenders.

Mine isn't a chocolate one. I have had the same advent calender for YEARS! I flatten it under the mattress and use it the following year. I love it.

On December 1st, we noticed the Prince had eaten chocolates from about eight windows and was also clutching another handful, which he was fiercely denying. Very cheeky!

I've been busy making Christmas cards, although only ones I can hand deliver, as decided not to post any this year and instead donate money to charity. Royal Mail are charging too much for stamps and I am cross.

A card topper

Loving my Christmassy cherry tree Ladybird books.

Such wonderful illustrations. Perfect Christmas!

In other news, I am currently obsessing over a cake stand I saw in a cherry tree shop window. We drove past it yesterday and the husband heard me go "Ohhhhhh!"and for a second he thought I was leaping out of the car while he was driving at 30mph for the sake of a cake stand. Perhaps I would have, if my back had allowed it.

I went back today and it's still there in the window. But it's £12. And it's not even a fancy brand. A bit steep, surely.

I really REALLY want it but I will not pay £12 for it. It's fair to say I do my bit for charidee so I shall bide my time and then go in and make an offer if it's still there. It has pink roses on it and everything.

My brother Rob flew in from Chicago yesterday and stayed with us. We attended a Christmas carol concert where the Princess was singing a solo to kick start the show. She sang the first verse of Silent Night before all the other children joined her. There were 250 parents there and as it was my belated grandfather's favourite carol, I shed more than a tear. In fact I had to squeeze myself to stop myself from blubbing. I was so proud of her. How brave my girl is.

Also my sister heard her baby's heart beat for the first time yesterday and it was as strong as a train. That lovely chugg chugg sound! (By the way, thank you, all of you for your very kind messages and texts. Means a lot to know how thoughtful you are!)

It's so exciting as I'd been getting broody for another baby in the family for a while (although not convinced I could actually be faffed to go through it all over again) and now I just can't wait to be the doting Auntie Gem. I just love the way a newborn baby smells. I am as excited as if it was my own!

Oooh and here are my two cherry tree purchases. Homemade pinnies from Scope. Different days. £1 each.

I have plans to Annie Sloan these chairs in spring. Each one will be an individual ice cream shade. Can't wait!

And so to bed. I have yet more ice on my back and need more painkillers. I shall update you on the cake stand in due course.


Castles Crowns and Cottages said...


I am so happy to be here to see that you are well, but what an ORDEAL you have been through! I have been thinking of you and other "mates" across the pond that I have not seen in weeks. Dearest, I know what that lower back pain can do. I had that last summer and it drove me straight to the chiropractor. Numb legs, butt and hips were just too intolerable!

I just love, adore, COVET that photo you took through the leaded glass window of Shakespeare's home! A wonderful shot! Your adventures and how you tell them always leave me feeling as if I had a great night at the pub, sharing wild tales and smiles. I wish you and the family a peaceful holiday season and YOU a swift recovery! MUCH LOVE! Anita

kmmms said...

Lovely post! I'm going to stick my neck out here and tell you those pics would be perfect on instagram :oP
Taya has done exactly the same with her advent calendar. She has even opened the 24th double door. Those little imps!
Sorry about your bad back. What has the doc said about it? Have you been for any massage/ physio etc?
Sorry again about the late night call last night

Kylie said...

Hi Gem,

I hope you're feeling better - glad to see your wicked sense of humour survived all that agony and vomit! Where would we be (us Mum's) if we coudn't laugh through the chaos?! And drink wine?!

I've got a few Christmas 'Ladies' too. I received a lovely pile of gorgeous old ones (many wearing their little jackets) from a friend last week. My collection is still growing - mainly through the efforts of friends - I haven't found any for ages!
Have you received yours from me yet?

I'm unvieling that Christmas t.towel you sent me this week. Very special, my only Christmas one! (thank you x)

Anyway Gem, if I don't write again before the big day, I hope you and your family have a lovely, pain and vomit free Christmas, and Similar wishes for the new year x

Jay said...

I hope your back eases off very soon, a bad back is so debilitating. And your journey to Stratford, oh poor you! Loving the flowery pinny though, good luck with the cake stand, maybe there'll be a January sale?

JessicaFrances said...

No one has the right to look that glam when in so much pain! I never look that glam on a GOOD day!!! The stratford photos are really lovely, but my you poor things, what a journey.
So lovely to hear about your clever daughter's solo, that is brave indeed!
Since I became a mum I cannot hear christmas carols without blubbing, doesn't matter where I am, I just can't get through a carol. School nativities are like ritual humiliation for me!

Vintage Coconut said...

Totally reminds me of my childhood. My little brother ALWAYS got car sick!! (I hated it) Cause I HAD to sit in the back seat with him and endure all his vomiting into takeout cups. *YUCK* The worst was when we were on a vacation and stopped for lunch at a Burger King. I was so Hungry and had JUST got my food... WAS ABOUT TO DIG IN. And *cue pukey bro* started barfing right at the table. *Uhgggghh* So all in all I can totally relate to the Princess. *hehe*
The back thing sounds horrid I hope it get's better very soon.

Sarah Jane said...

This time of year is a real biatch for the lurgy. Kids pick up all kinds from school. Good to hear from you and loving those charity purchases. Do you mind me asking what you do for a living? (It's been a long held ambition of mine to work from home!!) xx

VintageVicki said...

Oh blimey what a hectic time :)

Little son used to be awfully ccarsick when he was small - the first time he rather caught us out and it was an emergency dash into a supermarket for wipes and new clothes! He's better now and can give us enough warning so we can stop :)

Castles Crowns and Cottages said...

Good morning my dear Gem,

Thank you for visiting today. It is always so good to see you, my dear friend across the pond.

Yes, it is a terrible time to witness such a senseless act on our innocent ones. I just read today in the news some gruesome details of the way the gunman attacked. All I could think of were the many innocent (and lovingly naughty!) little faces I have taught....I shudder to think of what happened.

But life goes on and all I can say is that our society is in desperate need of REAL CHANGE. This cannot continue.

Hugs those kids of yours tightly...and big hugs to you gorgeous GEm! Anita

Unknown said...

Tried hard not to smile at your stratford story but the idea of gloves as footwear really made me laugh. Lovely post, hope that back gets better before the big day xxx

Cuckoo said...

So much to say! Such a lovely long post, I've no idea where to start.

First and foremost, let me congratulate all here on the fab news that there is to be a Mini Danna!!! Very exciting. They got married at the same time as the other glam couple and I guess the baby will arrive at a similar time too. Are they secret royals!!?

I feel for you and The Stratford Journey as it will have to be called. The poor Mr dealing with so much vom and tears. I can just picture the Prince wearing his funny attire. Glad you can laugh at it now. Must say you look beautiful in pain and drugged up. That sounds all wrong!

Love your gift wrapping. Totally gorgeous.

Love, too, that you flatten your advent calender under your mattress.

Right, Wilf is literally going bleeding banana's trying to get at this keyboard.

lots of love,


Pinny delight! OMG what finds. I love a pinny, I do!!

Gem said...

Hey huni, sorry to hear about the bad back, I hope it is easing up a bit.

The cra episode, comical is the only word that springs to mind however I'm sure it wasn't for you my lovely, it does sound pretty dire. Still it's almost Christmas so things have got to be looking up hey ;p x x x x