London Baby

Mr A and I have had many many trips down to good old London town over the years, we both have family who live in and around London and over the years a LOT of our friends have migrated down there.

As with a lot of people our age there are weddings pretty much every year with friends tying the not and this year we were invited to a really good friend of Mr A’s wedding in London. When we were told about the wedding and received our “save the date” we knew that we were actually trying to get pregnant again….. hmm timingI. If we had fallen pregnant straight away (like the 1st time) then we wouldn’t have been able to make it to the wedding, but as fate would have it we took a few months to fall pregnant this time round.

Although we were really excited to head on down to big old London town to see lots of our friends and family the wedding date was quite close to our due date, not to mention the cost. Flying from the north east of Scotland to London has become so expensive, or maybe it just seems that way now we have a mini person to pay for too. I spoke to our midwife about the trip and she said that if things continued the way they were with the pregnancy that there should be no issues with us flying down. And as luck would have it one of the airlines that flies our route had a sale….wooohoooo. So we booked our flights and my fab Aunt and Uncle offered to put us up during our visit.

We were excited for our little summer holiday and our last trip as a family of 3. We made plans to see as many people as we could while down there but also not overstretch ourselves, trying to remember that I was going to be 31 weeks pregnant and have a 2 year old….. We decided to make our way to Kent to see my Grandmother for a few days while we were down that way and my aunt was able to come over there while we were visiting also which was fabulous. I have so many memories of spending time with my mums family and it always fills my heart when i get to see my little monkey making memories with them too.

As everyone does I’m sure, we were keeping an eye on the weather in the week leading up to heading down and woohooo it was showing sunshine the entire time we were going to be there.

Finally it was the night before our trip, the bags were packed and little miss A was fast asleep and the alarm was set for 04.20 (YUCK). We managed to get up without waking our sleeping princess, of course she chose that night/morning to sleep soundly, and get dressed and all sorted. As soon as Grandpa arrived to take us to the airport I tried to gently put shoes and a jumper over little miss A’s PJ’s, she instantly woke up and just smiled and said time for holiday.

She loves traveling and of course charms everyone we come into contact with through out the airport. But nothing put a smile on her face more than looking out the window at her Purple Aeroplane, her patience once she had seen the plane disappeared and she wanted to get on NOW. The excitement level grew once we got on the plane and she realised that she had her own seat this time. Despite having some breakfast while we waited to board our flight, homemade peanut butter sandwich, as soon as i busted out my granola/yoghurt snack she decided she would have a taste, which translated into I will eat the entire thing mummy.

IMG_7449

Planes, trains and tubes are all exciting things for a 2 year old and she loved every minute of our time down there, even with the 32 degrees. We arrived on Wednesday morning and made our way on the DLR from the airport to my uncles apartment and after having a little rest and settling in we made our way out to a huge park that we had discovered was near bye (by that I mean Mr A found it during his research on what to do in London with a toddler). Snacks in the park and lots of running around made for a fab first afternoon before making our way back to meet my uncle and aunt at their apartment for a BBQ on the balcony, this made us really feel like we were having a mini summer holiday.

We made our way to Kent the next morning on the train and with all the excitement of snacks and watching out the window with little miss A it actually didn’t feel like it took that long at all. She was so excited to see our Mama and my aunt and within about 20 mins she was making herself at home making smoothies with my aunt. We had a great 2 days in Kent, going out for lunch, making smoothies, having tea parties, playing in the park and little miss loved getting everyone to chase her outside Mama’s place the most.

On Friday afternoon it was time to make our way back to the big smoke and get wedding ready. I am so impressed a how well little miss A did with all the traveling and jumping from trains to tubes etc. I know a lot of toddlers/kids do it but it really isn’t something she is used to, we are lucky enough to generally be able to walk to most places we need to go and if we do any shorter trips we jump in our car.

The wedding we were attending on the Saturday didn’t start until 3pm, which meant we could have a sort of lazy morning (as lazy as life with a 2 year old allows) and we made our way to Tom’s Kitchen in Canary Wharf for brunch. They have a great kids area there which was a saving grace and although we tag teamed our way through the food (and the fact she turned her nose up at the lovely pancake we ordered her and instead ate the beans that came with the rest of our orders) we managed to have a lovely brunch before heading back to get wedding ready.

The wedding was in a fabulous building and we were very greatful for the air con on a very warm day travelling through London. Little miss A was really well behaved, we sat at the back of the room in case she decided that she had enough but it wasn’t until right at the very end when she decided that she needed the toilet so we snuck out and then did some running around in the hallway. That was after she had been leaning out into the aisle so that the wedding photographers could get her into their shots. Isn’t it funny how these fab little people are so used to us always taking pictures of them that they assume everyone must want pictures of them too. After a quick bus ride in an old London bus (which was super cute but very hot) we made it to the super cool reception location. It was super funky and lots of room for the little people to run around and they had some great things for the kids to do, colouring in, giant jenga…….. not to mention the photo booth, little miss A found the box with accessories to use for photos and kept grabbing someone to go play dress up with her.

It was really great for MR A to get to hang out with all of his old buddies and let his hair down. Most of his old school friends live down in London and the surrounding area so its not very often that he gets to see them all at the same time. Little miss A had a fab time and of course had everyone ready to play with her whenever she asked. By 9pm however we had one very overtired little lady (i even took her out for  a walk in the stroller but of course she refused to give in and sleep) and a pregnant mummy who was ready to head home. MR A decided that he would come back with us and we grabbed a taxi back to my uncles house, being in a taxi was even fun for our little monkey who chatted to MR Taxi the entire drive back and had him in stitches. Little miss A and I hit the sack while MR A sat on the balcony with my aunt and uncle chatting over whisky and cigars until the small hours of the next morning (so don’t feel too sorry for him leaving the wedding early).

Luckily little miss A did sleep in a bit for us the next morning, as everyone in the apartment needed it. We got up and organised and made our way to Mudchute Farm to visit the animals and grab brunch, little miss A and I had obviously already had round 1 with breakfast. What a great place and so fab to have somewhere like that in the city. If you are in the city and fancy a bit of green and super yummy food its a must, https://www.mudchute.org/plan-your-visit/opening-times . After eating far too much and saying hello to all the animals we made our way over to Greenwich, we decided to take the tunnel which may have been a mistake after we arrived and discovered the lifts weren’t working… luckily there were enough of us to carry little miss A and the pushchair down ALL the stairs separately and it was lovely and cool down there, we weren’t so excited to find the lifts out of service at the other end too and the walk up ALL the stairs again made sure that we were all ready for something cold to drink.

We made our way to the Greenwich Brewery and in perfect time to grab a big table in the shade and order something lovely and cold (soft for me obviously) and wait for one of my besties to arrive. My bestie moved to London a few years ago and we love catching up with her when ever we are down there, and little miss A loves hanging out with her auntie A and uncle S. It was a great afternoon with us all catching up and running around after little miss A, in as much shade as always.

Monday was our last day in London and seeing as everyone was back to work we really wanted a day that was filled with fun things for little miss A and the family to enjoy. Mr A had done lots of research, obviously, and lots of places said that the science museum was a great place for toddlers as they have a great interactive area for preschoolers. What a great find, she LOVED it there and we spent HOURS there, we made it out of the toddler area to grab some lunch and then we made our way right back there.

We also managed to squeeze in a quick catch up with a family that we met at our birthing group. They lived right beside us and us mummies hung out a lot before and after out little babies arrived before they also moved down to London (thanks to the oil industry slump) so it was really really great to be able to spend even a little bit of time with them while we were down there.

It was such a great week down there and we certainly managed to squeeze a lot into our time there. We felt like we were in the med with the weather (which seems slightly easier to deal with when you can dip into a pool or sea) and we were so impressed with how little miss A coped with the weather and all the running around, she really loved spending time with so many of our friends and family and even aspects we thought of as boring she loved. And it’s hard to believe that was our last trip as a family of 3?!?!?!?!?!?

https://www.museumoflondon.org.uk/museum-london-docklands/permanent-galleries/mudlarks-childrens-gallery
Fun at the London Docklands Museum
As much fun as being on a holiday is I still think there is nothing better than getting back to your own bed. And travelling with little people is as easy as you make it but i love seeing little miss A’s face when she gets back home to all her ‘stuff’.

 

Advertisements

Trying for baby number 2

For those who have read my previous blog posts we were really lucky when we decided to start trying for a family and it took us less than 2 months to fall pregnant with little miss A.

Fast forward 18 months and the timing was right for us to start trying to expand our family. I have read a few stories stating that it is harder to fall pregnant while you are still nursing but in theory as long as you are ovulating then you can get pregnant?

Well it was August and we decided this would be the month that we  would start trying, this however was easier said than done with a 18 month old milkies monster who is not a great sleeper…… so with mummy and daddy feeling quite tired it was sometimes quite an effort to find time to try…

So when the end of the first month came and went and my period came I was feeling a little deflated, which I know is crazy after only trying for 1 month but maybe it was  the fact that we seemed to have a sleep regression with our princess thanks to teething.


I decided to get an ovulation kit to try and pin point when it would be ideal time for us to try, since my periods returned 15 months after giving birth they had been regular but varying in length so I really thought that tracking my ovulation would help us. Well despite spending a small fortune on an ovulation kit it told me that I wasn’t ovulating……. bring on some frustration and almost panic on my behalf.

I turned to some trusty ladies in a community that I am very greatful to be part of, I am a member of a fab group on facebook of parents who like me continue to breastfeed past 1 years old, and although this was not strictly breastfeeding related I knew that they would have some words of wisdom and support, and they did. Quite a few of them had been in the same situation as me when the ovulation tests didn’t show them as ovulating and many of them recommended some ovulation aps.

Straight away I was looking at the aps that many of the group members had recommended and actually a friend of mine had also used one of the suggested ones.  Ovia is the app that I decided to go with and it was really easy to use and track and I am happy to say it worked for us.

It really narrowed the window down for the best time for us to try and although we didn’t fall pregnant the first month we used the app by the 2nd month using the app I was actually a lot more in tune with my body and at the end of 4 months of trying we confirmed that we were pregnant with baby number 2.

I had all these grand ideas about announcing to Mr A that he was going to be a father of 2 with lots of these ideas coming from Pinterest (obviously).

Mid way through November I started to feel what I believed to be early pregnancy symptoms, the same ones i had when pregnant the first time, but I had also felt these the month before and my period came so I didn’t want to get ahead of myself. By the begining of December I was a few days late but as I said since my periods had retuned they had varied in length so again I didn’t want to get too excited and was trying to make myself wait a week before doing a pregnancy test. Durning this time little Miss A had come down with a pretty awful virus and was vomiting about every 2 hours for 2 days……… not fun especially as she has never been a baby/child who has suffered from vomiting at all, she didn’t even really spit up that much as a newborn.

So for 3 days all she wanted was her milkies and even though she was being sick regularly I knew that she would be taking some nuitrients in from the breastmilk and getting lots of comfort from it. After 3 days she stopped vomiting but then it started to come out the other end…. however she was starting to show interest in some food once again. However after day 5 I woke up really early in the morning and I knew that I was going to be sick………..

I managed to not be sick and thought that maybe it was just because I was tired from not getting any sleep for a week adn hungry from little miss A breastfeeding so much again….. Nope about half an hour after Mr A getting to work I was vomiting and had to ask him to come home, little miss A was now feeling much better and was back to her energetic self, meaning she didn’t want to sit still for more than 2 minutes. Luckily I only suffered for 1 day with vomiting but Mr A said to me “are you sure it’s the virus and not morning sickness”. So I couldn’t wait any longer and went to the bathroom to do a pregnancy test.

My grand plans of making an elaborate announcement to Mr A about being a dad to 2 went out the window and in my PJs and un washed self and hair I came back through hugged him and we were both so excited to be expanding our little family.

This was 4 days before we were due to head over to Namibia to spend Christmas and New Year with my mum…… we agreed that we would tell her while we were out there. Despite the fact that we wanted to wait until we had our 12 week scan to tell anyone we really wanted to be able to tell her in person. I am so glad that we did decide to tell my mum and to be honest she would probably have guessed because my nausia hit with a huge punch during our last week over there, also the fact that I wasn’t drinking during the festive season.

Cotton and bloom
Cotton and bloom top to announce our news
 

A warm Christmas 

This was Mr A’s first warm Christmas and New Year, and little miss A’s and I was really looking forward to another warm festive season, or just the warm 😃.

Mr A was surprised to see western looking Christmas trees decorating public places and people’s homes. The game lodge we stayed at did have some more native plants/trees that were beautifully decorated.

What I really love about Christmas in Africa is that it really is all about Christmas and not buying ridiculous amounts presents for everyone you have ever met and buying into the commercial side of it all.

My mum is REALLY into Christmas 🎄 and she always has a colour theme for each year. She loves having everyone together with yummy food and just enjoying spending time together.

We had a lovely morning all together having breakfast and getting started on the Christmas lunch. Once everyone was fed and dressed we sat together and opened our stockings. We always do stockings for each other and its such a fun thing to do and really makes you think about the recipient of the stocking, its not about spending huge amounts of money on gifts its about finding things that are fun and that will put a smile on the face of the person opening the stocking and making them laugh.

Once the stockings were all opened it was time to crack on with our epic lunch for 12 people. Our Christmas lunch started out being planned for 6 people (and little miss A) fast forward to Christmas Day and we were now cooking for 12 people including a vegiterian, a celiac and 3 Jewish people who were not able to eat any pork. Wow, we were a fabulous team with the BBQ fired up for the turkey (we have cooked our turkey on the BBQ for the last 5 years i think, even in the UK and everyone always goes on about how fab it us, we always soak it in a Nigella brine over night.) we had a Ham a Turdukin, kilted sausages (which were normal sized sausages wrapped in bacon) the usual veg and potatoes, my mum made a gorgeous nut roast for me, the other guests brought beautiful salads and a traditional corned beef plus numerous deserts….. wow I am full just writing this down.

It was such a great day, spending time with our family and friends and it was such an interesting mix of people. Little Miss A loved having so many people around to pay lots of attention and we spent as much time outside as we could. So MR A got to have as close to a tradtitonal western Christmas dinner as we could provide in Namibia.

We had a few family friends over for a lovely dinner on New Years Eve also, not quite 12 like Christmas Day, but little miss A was not playing ball that night. She woke up at 11.45……… I managed to get her back to sleep quickly and run back through just in time for midnight and had a big kiss with my amazing husband and 2 sips of non alchaolic fizz before running back through to a very tired grumpy little lady who woke up again (actually it was a nice excuse to just go to bed, as i was soooo tired).

IMG_7130
Someone did not want to put any clothes on in preparation of our guests arriving for New Years Eve.

New Year’s Day we packed a lovely picnic and hit the beach, most people had sore heads so it was great just to find a nice spot on the beach and play in the sand with little miss A and relax. It was quite windy on New Years Day so it wasn’t a typical beach day but it was just what we all needed. I couldn’t quite believe that our time together at the coast was coming to an end, it had been so so amazing to be in that fabulous house minutes walk from the beach and spending so much quality time together in the fabulous weather.

We made the 5 hour journey back to Windhoek on the 2nd of January and phewwww the closer inland we got the hotter it got. I would like to add that our stubborn little lady refused to sleep AT ALL during that epic drive back to the city, what a girl. We had a lovely last few days with Mum and friends in the city and I think little miss A could sense that we would be leaving her oumie because  she was Oumie’s shadow and needed to help her with EVERYTHING, as you can imagine this was absolutly no problem with Oumie at all.

I can’t even begin to put into words how fabulous it was to have this festive adventure all together and for little miss A to have an african adventure and get to see a place that is so important to my side of the family.

To the coast we go

After the most amazing game reserve stay we packed up mums car once again and hit the (dirt) road bound for th coast.

During Christmas/New Year Swakpomund is where pretty much everyone form Windhoek goes to escape the heat and we were part of that gang. This meant that we needed to book. Our accommodation in January to make sure we got something suitable. We decided to rent a house near the beach as self catering with a family just makes things so much easier. We found this great house that was a block from the beach, had enough bedrooms and bathrooms for everyone and had a great outside BBQ/ entertainment area. The only draw back was that there was no bath at the house we were staying at, not an issue as my mum bought a paddling pool we could use in the bathroom….. erm but she didn’t check the measurements and it was big enough for all of us to sit in. We got a smaller one the next day at the mall and little miss A loved her little baths every night.

As soon as we arrived little miss A made herself right at home running through the place exploring every room. There was a kind of granny flat on the property which was also rented out and the family had dogs which made little miss A’s day. This really was a great find, a block from the beach, enough room for everyone, an awesome restaurant/bar in walking distance and a brand new mall just around the corner too.

There was so much for us all to do at the coast and the weather was much cooler than before. On some days it was even slightly overcast but my mums friend told us about this soft play which was actually amazing and one of the best ones  I have ever been to. Little miss A loved it and so did everyone when they had to take it in turns to go in with her 😜.

We had seen what looked like a great outdoor water/bouncy castle park on the beach front when driving past a few times so we decided to head there one day. It was great, only £5 entry and that was for 5 minutes or the entire day. It was split into two sections, a baby/toddler section and the rest for bigger kids. With bouncy castles, water slides and paddling pools, it looked so fun. The only issue was that grown ups were not allowed onto the sections even with little kids and little miss A wasn’t quite confident enough to run around them on her own. We tried them all out though and she was more than happy witting in the water splashing bubbles at the bottom of one of the baby slides.

Each section had a worker looking after it and the kids and at the slide we were splashing at the worker kept helping the kids go down the slide, this did not go down well with little miss A who was in total shock when he picked her up and held her going down the slide….. MUMMY!!!! And our fun at the water/bouncy park was done. We did go and watch some of th big kids going down the big slides which she found very amusing! 😃

We decided to hit up the aquarium one of the mornings, however so did a bus full of other people….. even though it was really busy little miss A loved seeing all the fish as always. The trip there was much quicker than we anticipated so we nipped to The Tiger Reef Bar which was at the end of the beach and a must go to if you are in Swakop. IT has changed quite a lot over the years I have been visiting Namibia but it is always great to be able to sit on the beach and grab a drink and some yummy food.

It was just to great to all be able to relax together and enjoy our time together. Lots of family and family friends were also staying at the coast so we got to catch up with a lot of them, most of which we hadn’t seen since we got married in 2013 😳. Little miss A got to play with some of her older cousins and just generally be made of fuss of which always goes down well with her.

Mr A and I also got to have a little date day with a wonder round some shops and markets and a yummy lunch right on the waterfront.

I loved seeing Ava bonding with th family out there and just being a real African baby! 😃 she has taken her shoes off the day we arrived in Namibia and had refused to wear them again until we flew home, this is so me and in the summer I can usually be found barefoot in th house and garden. She also refused to wgive at any clothes a few days and she which mimicked many photos of my childhood in Africa, not to mentioned saved on washing 😃.

We speak to my mum generally a few times a week on FaceTime or Skype but it was just so great seeing her and Oumie spending so much quality time together. As soon as she  as awake in the morning she was calling out for her Oumie and they  would make coffee and smoothies together and make breakfast for everyone. She loved helping Oumie in the kitchen just as much as Oumie loved having her help.

During our last week of the holiday my early pregnancy nausea kicked in, yuck. I had it pretty badly with my first pregnancy for the first trimester and this time was no different. Having lots of people around to help entertain little miss A was a god send but I felt pretty blah and yucky for the last few days of the trip.

Coming up ….. Our Christmas and New Year in Namibia.

Omaruru Lodge 

After a hot and busy few days in Windhoek it was time for us to start making our way to the coast. My mum thought it would be a good idea to break up the journey and stop off at a game reserve.

Omaruru is about half way between Windhoek and the coast and there are a few game reserves and lodges in the area. Some friends of my mum had recommended Omaruru Lodge and none of us had stayed there before but it was supposed to be very family friendly.

I am SSOO glad that mum decided to go with the recommendation. Yes we have stayed at higher spec lodges that were more swish but this place was fabulous. As soon as we arrived at the entrance gate we were greeted by the happiest most helpful staff and from start to finish they could not have done more for us. The chalets were gorgeous and made you really feel like you were in Africa! They were really spacious, clean and really well equipped, and Mr A was very happy to see Aircon! The pool area was lovely and the restaurant/bar building was awesome, with the outside seating area looking out over their water hole.

They have quite a few rescue animals at this reserve which made for an amazing once in a lifetime experience. There are two cheetahs who have a lovely big enclosure and we got to watch as one of the guides brought dinner for them. It was really amazing how he showed us to keep eye contact with the cheetahs, the moment he moved his eye sight the cheetahs pounced on the fence… I hope i don’t ever have to see if this works personally though 😳. They also have a leopard which had been rescued, who lives in a huge fenced area. They have an observation area where he comes in to see what food has been brought for him and the guide was able to tell us lots of information, he then ran back to his huge area and apparently would come back for his meat when no one was there.

Little miss A loved seeing the leopard and the cheetahs, she made the other guests laugh as she kept pointing and saying miowwww when ever she saw them. 😃

We made our way to the restaurant/ bar to have a little drink before dinner beside the waterhole. Oh my goodness we were in for a treat. The sun was starting to go down and all the animals were gathering at the waterhole, it was a truly magical sight. Some of the guest got to help give an orphaned baby giraffe his evening bottle (Mr A was able to give the bottle on night 2) and we got to touch a rhino!!!

These are while animals and obviously it was all done with the guidance of the experts who worked at the lodge with the animals. There has been drought conditions in Namibia for the last 4 years and all the lodges have had to supplement the animals food sources so they can survive, this means  that they have become more accustomed to being around humans.

It really was a magical experience, I have never touched a wild animal and being able to gently stroke the giraffe and Rhino will stay with me forever and what an introduction to Africa for little miss A.

As if our time at the lodge could be topped we had a game drive booked for the next morning. I was a little anxious at how little miss A would cope with a 2 hour game drive in an open vechicle, I’m not sure why I evehave worry about her. I think she was most excited about sitting on the big seats between mummy and daddy and she kept looking for miow’s in the bush. Due to the drought it can be quite hard to find the animals other than beside the waterholes. After driving for just over an hour and seeing quite a few animals we had not been able to see the elephants that lived in the reserve. To be honest I wasn’t that disappointed as we have been lucky enough to see wild elephants on a few occasions while visiting Africa.

Then just as we were getting ready to head back to the lodge we found the elephants and oh my goodness what an experience. Again due to the drought the viewing vehicles sometimes carry special feed for the Animals and this brought the elephants right over to the truck.

Typically little miss A had nodded off by this point and we managed to wake her up as the elephants were saying hello to us with their tusks. 😃I was surprised by how rough and bristly their tusks were, I’m not sure what I expected them to feel like but I was surprised.

This was truly an amazing experience and little miss A was mesmerised.

Wow wow wow, what a game drive. After a lovely spot of lunch by the waterhole and a lovely LONG nap we spent the afternoon splashing in the pool and it was fab. The food at this lodge was amazing, Mr A and my mum raved about the meat and they were so accommodating with me being a vegetarian (not a very common thing in Namibia) .

After another lovely evening at the lodge, and a fantastic nights sleep thanks to fab air con it was time to load up the car and make our way to the coast.

If anyone is planning a trip to Namibia I couldn’t recommend a stay at Omaruru lodge highly enough. www.omaruru-game-lodge.com/sites/en/index.html

Namibia here we come 

We have been looking forward to this holiday since we booked it in January……. this is going to be little miss A’s first trip to Africa and Mr A’s first Christmas there.  Not only are we escaping to some sunshine but we also get to spend almost 3 weeks with my mum and stepdad, yippeeee! I am so excited for little miss A to have so much time with them, it is going to be so special. 

I’m glad that we had started to get organised early because the week before we were due to leave little miss came down with a nurovirus type bug and it was a full on week of a poorly princess and a weekend of a poorly mummy! So I had planned to write a big blog about how we were getting organised and what we were packing in hand luggage etc but that went out the window. 😳

I am a huge lover of a zip lock bag and actually used them quite a bit for organising our hand luggage. Our first flight departed at 0530 so little miss A traveled in her pjs (wish I was too) and I had a lovely cozy outfit for her all organised and on a ziplock along with a spare and a summer outfit to change her into before we landed in Windhoek. We also had snacks in a bag and some toys for her to play with, this made her hand luggage so much easier to deal with. 

Arrival outfit
Cozy Frankfurt outfit

The taxi was booked for 0315 😭and Mr A and I managed to get up to the alarm and get ready all without waking our sleeping princess, once the taxi arrived Mr A got the car seat and suitcase all sorted while I popped another layer on little miss A and her scarf and hat which gently work her up and we whisked her into ththe taxi and away we went. 

Oblivious to the chaos around her
Airport selfie

Thank goodness for babywearing!! As soon as we got to the airport I put the baby carrier on (we used our Becco Gemini) and put our sleepy monkey straight in. This made standing in line for check in much easier and I even got to keep her in it while we went through security. 

After saying hello to pretty much everyone in the departures area we were ready to get on our first flight….

We got in our seats and got comfy and before we even began to taxi little miss A snuggled in for some mummy’s milkies and she was asleep not long after take off, a win for breastfeeding. I think I may have even managed to close my eyes for a few minutes during the short flight to Frankfurt. 

Our next flight to Windhoek wasn’t due to leave until 20.30 that evening so we had planned to get the train into Frankfurt and check out h Christmas market. 

After a fiasco with getting bags from one terminal to the other (again thank goodness for babywearing and balancing luggage on strollers etc) we made it into Frankfurt and after a coffee and late breakfast we hit the market. 

Cheers
While toddler is sleeping
Taking everything in
Wants to look at everything
Enjoying the German sausage for lunch
Come on daddy let’s explore

I am so glad that we were able to spend some time outside exploring the market between flights, it let us all get some fresh air and little miss A got to burn some energy (and we were hoping for lots of sleeping on ththe next flight). 

Train snoozing on way back to the airport

Frankfurt airport is great and is relatively easy to get around and between terminals (just not when we had to change with our bags and the lift was broken 😳) and we even found a soft play area. Woohoo After her nap we made our way to ththe soft play and she got to run around and burn more energy, I think all airports should had a play area, what a godsend! 

I’ll take this bag mummy
Ready steady

It was then time to check in for our next flight and little miss A charmed everyone she met as always and one of my mums friends was on duty for the airline we were traveling with so we got to have a chat with him! 

That left time for some dinner and to make our way through security and get little miss A back in her pjs. 

Nothing to see here just eating my dinner

We had the biggest most lovely surprise right before boarding the aircraft and we had been upgraded to business class (I actually could have cried). Little miss A was very impressed with our lovely big seat and sat waving saying “hiya” to everyone as the passed her 😳. What a difference that seat made when you have someone sitting on you! She was almost asleep during take off but then the lights came back on for dinner service and she was very excited to see what was coming next. 

Cheese
Where are you sitting mummy?

After eating some of mummy and daddy’s dinner we reclined our chairs and snuggled down with mummy milkies and she was fast asleep. What a difference being able to lay flat made…. hmm think I need to win the lotto so we can always travel like that 😜. 

Zzzzz

About an hour before we were due to land the lights came back on and breakfast was served, although little miss A wasn’t too excited to be waking up, she soon peeked up once she saw the food coming. Once we polished off the scrummy breakfast it was time to get littl miss A out of her pjs and into her summer clothes. 

Someone was comfy

Breakfast feast

I love coming into land in Windhoek, they always come quite low for ages and you can see the beautiful landscape and if you are eagle eyed you can some times see some game as you come into land. My mum used to work for the airline we were flying with so she used to always be at the bottom of the steps waiting for us and mr A and I were saying oh isn’t it going to be funny when we arrive and she is not there. 

We had a beautiful landing and as the aircraft was making its way to the stand I could see someone with  bright read hair waiting and I knew she used her contacts and was there to meet us. We told little miss A that oumie was waiting outside and once we stopped she could see her out the window and was shouting for her Oumie and trying desperately to get out the seatbelt. 

I think we were excited 💗

I can’t express how happy I was to be back in beautiful Namibia and with my mum! 

Ready steady virus

So the week before we head of on holiday was not the ideal time for little miss A to catch a stomach virus! 

She loved being back to nursery on Monday (well after the usual tears when it’s time for me to leave) and getting to play with her friends. We said good bye to great Nannie, Auntie and Uncle on Monday afternoon and it was so fab to see them one more time before they flew back down to Essex. 

Tuesday morning we met a lovely bunch at one of the soft plays and again little miss A loved burning all her energy after being around adults for over a week. Fast forward Tuesday night and the monitor burst into action and it looked like our sleeping princess was almost chocking…. as you can imagine I LEPED out of bed and shot through to her nursery in record time to find her vomiting everywhere!!!!!!! 

We have been so lucky with little miss A and she really isn’t a sickly girl at all, I could count on 1 hand the number of times she has been ill and even as a newborn she never really vomited or spat up really. So this was a SHOCK to the system. That night she woke up and vomited every hour, bahhhh it was everywhere, I think we both changed through all of our clean pjs in one night! 

Wednesday was much of the same and all I can say is thank goodness for breastfeeding. She was pretty good at drinking water throughout the day so at least she had something to throw up, and she was nursing most of the day for milk and for comfort. Wednesday night was marginally better but we still had quite a few pj changes and as you can imagine we were all shattered. 

Mummy’s can make it better

Thursday was a much better day and little miss A was only sick twice… woohoo. I think we had watched more cartoons in the past 2 days than we had watched ever but when you have a poorly and tired little person it’s all about cozy snuggles. 

I woke up around 0430 on Friday and looked over to see little miss A fast asleep and realised she hadn’t been sick durning the night, wooohooo, but I could tell that I was going to be sick. 😳 I managed to sneak out of bed and grab a glass of cold water and have a little sit in the bathroom in case….. nothing. Typically not long after Mr A got to work I was sooooo sick! Of course little miss A was full of beans again and was ready to get out of bed and run around like the Tasmanian devil! Mr A kindly came home from work so that I could go back to bed and I pretty much slept and rested the entire day (which hasn’t happened for almost 2 years). 

Thankfully my bout of illness lasted 24 hours only (thank goodness) and by Saturday we seemed to be almost back to normal, tired but feeling much much better. 💗 Mr A and I even managed to do a bit of packing while he princess slept on Saturday. I have had most of the things we are taking with us in bags but we needed to check what we still needed and actually pack it nicely. 😃

Mr A’s family from the area were due to have Christmas dinner at our house on Friday, which we had to cancel, so everyone came over on Sunday and little miss A loved having some company again. She was spoiled rotten with Christmas presents from everyone, although she still loves ripping the paper off the most, and it was lovely to catch up with everyone before head off to the sun. 

Christmas Dinner x 2

And now it’s Monday!! We didn’t send little miss A to nursery today as she needs to be symptom  free 4 days before going back and I would hate for anyone else to catch what she had. So we had a day trying out all of her new things and trying to do last minute washing and sorting. Have I mentioned that it’s only 3 more sleeps now till we start making our way to our Namibian adventure 💗

Of course while we were on FaceTime to Oumie little miss A took a dive and hit her head on the side of one of her wooden chairs….. ahhhhhhhhh 😭. Lots of tears and what I thought was going to be a HUGE egg on her head, but we had a snuggle on the sofa with mummy milkies and arnica and Bing and it  as all okay, phewww. A lovely bruise to travel with! 

Getting over her trauma

Keep an eye out for a mini blog post about what we are taking with us in our hang luggage to keep and energetic toddler amused with for 24 hours traveling. 

Got to love cat headphones

Phewww what a week 

It’s not a Christmas Day without a napping Pops

Oh my goodness it’s currently Sunday evening and I am beyond shattered, but in a lovely way. 

My dad and step mum arrived on Monday afternoon and came to collect little miss A from nursery with me which was fab. We had a lazy home day with them on Tuesday and got ready to have our Christmas dinner celebration that night along with my brother and his girlfriend and of course Floki the puppy! Mr A had taken Tuesday and Wednesday off work to spend with us which was fab. Little miss A LOVED having Nana and Pops here and was having so much fun while mum and dad got everything going for dinner. 

Christmas dinner take 1
Christmas Dinner take 1

Add to the excitement the arrival of her fury cousin and she was in her element. We had a yummy dinner of pate to start followed by roast ham and all the trimmings (I had a vegetarian escalope type thing but all the trimmings, well none meat ones 😃) , by the time the starters were finished though so was little miss A, who proceeded to strip off and sit in her booster seat watching cartoons so mummy could eat her main. 💗

Christmas dinner is hot work

We then nipped upstairs for a bath and then she went down to sleep and that is when desert happened. My brother and his girlfriend made a lovely banoffee pie and we had literally a million different cheeses and crackers. It was scrummy!!!! 
Wednesday is swimming day and we have to leave the  house at  0900 in th morning which I think was a shock to retired Nana and Pops. Little miss A was in her element having not only daddy watching swimming but also Nana and Pops! In the afternoon we met Mr A’s folks at Dobbies Garden centre and little miss A was loving having 2 sets of her grandparents at once. We looked at ALL the Christmas decorations etc and the pet corner not to mention the FISH. We found one of the seating sections had lots of fun things for little people which meant that we all managed to have a coffee and a wee treat while keeping the little monkey entertained. 

Hi Santa
Awwwwww fishies
I want this one Grandad
My brother and his girlfriend had us all round for homemade fish and chips on Wednesday and everyone else had some yummy homemade mulled cider (designated driver). It’s always fab to have dinner at someone else’s house and not have to do any of the cleanup. 

Avocado to start, yummy
Not tired mummy, we are just resting

Thursday morning brought more playing with Nana and Pops before they made their way home and then a quick change in the spare room before some of Mr A’s family arrived in the afternoon. 


Mummy’s helper 

We have had another fun packed 4 days with Great Nannie being up from Essex along with great aunties and uncles. Little miss A had just loved having so many people here all around her and making so many new memories with the family. 

Having fun

Mr A’s Nannie is the sweetest tiny little beautiful Nannie you could imagine and she is so soft and gentle. Little miss A has always gravitated towards her and on this visit after being around her for about 10 minutes she started pointing to her and saying Nannie. This brought huge smiles to everyone and I’m hope made Nannie’s visit for her. 

Burning some energy at the park
It’s Monday morning and little miss A has gone to nursery and I’m sure will love playing with all her little friends again. I have said goodbye to our 2nd lot of house guests and I am currently in cleaning mode. I’m picking little miss A up a bit early so she can say goodbye to her great Nannie and great aunty and uncle and then it’s back to normality for a few days. And by normality I means running around to play dates and swimming and we are really looking forward to going up and spending the day with JJ and Iris (hissleepysmiles.wordpress.com). Oh and fitting in properly packing for going to NAMIBIA! Not that I am excited at all 😜

Have a great week everyone 

The comfiest way to watch cartoons

Getting ready for Christmas 

Mini Christmas tree
Mini Christmas Tree

I really really love this time of year, it has always been quite a big deal in my family. Not all the presents and craziness but getting to spend lots of extra time together, eat lots of food and be Merry! 

Mr A always dreads how many lights I’m going to instruct him to put up and always complains that our house looks like it should be on a street in America 😃. 

I am a bit of a control freak when it comes to decorating the tree though, and to be honest I love it best when it just has the lights on!!!! Since Mr A and I started living together we have always gone and chosen a real Christmas tree and we usually take my brother (and more recently his lovely girlfriend) and pick a tree together, get yummy food there and sing along to the Christmas songs, okay I sing and they cringe. 

Mr A and I started to collect Christmas decorations from all of our trips around the world and I love that when we decorate and look at the tree we can remember all of our adventures. 

Too small, wants to be a big girl
I want to be a Christmas pudding

We went to visit Santa this week while Mr A had some time off work and before it got to busy, little miss A has obviously been very good as she got a lovely book and sat very nicely beside Santa. We have been to the see the Clan santa both last year and this as the money goes to Clan a fantastic charity.  After saying hi to Santa we met a friend who has just moved here and we went to check our the Aberdeen Christmas Village which was lovely. It’s not quite Edinburgh Christmas Market but it’s really great to have something here and it’s only the 2nd year and already it seemed better so watch that space. 

Aberdeen Christmas village big girl
Wow
Car pretty girl I'm coming out
Beep beep
Tartan party dress meeting santa Christmas
Christmas ready

Because we are leaving for Namibia on the 15th of December we decided not to get tree this year but we did go with my brother and his girlfriend on Sunday to “help” them pick their tree. I’m so glad they wanted to get a tree so that we could tag along and still take part in the yearly tradition. 

Although I’m not sure what size car aunty and uncle remembered we had but the tree they picked was almost 7 foot….. hmm it was very amusing for the family parked beside us watching 4 adults and a toddler and a 7f tree trying to squeeze into an SUV! 😳 we made it to their house though with everyone in one piece, just. 

Christmas tree massive
Hmmm is it going to fit….

We have Nana and Pops arriving this week for a few days and the first Christmas gathering followed by some of Mr A’s family arriving on Thursday for a long weekend. We then have the A family Christmas gathering next Friday followed by the H family on Saturday… and then it’s 4 days till we leave… pheww I’m tired just thinking about it all. 

The Christmas cards are almost all written and almost all of the presents are wrapped. To be honest we are going to look for a lot of presents from our trip so there haven’t been too many to wrap here before we go. 

Christmas presents Christmas paper
Let’s get wrapping

I am so excited for Mr A and little miss A to be able to experience a warm Christmas with my mum and step dad this year. And this is little miss A’s first trip back home to Africa and I am beyond excited for this adventure. 

Stay tuned for our Christmas gatherings and holiday preparations……

Christmas tree exploring
I like the feel of this one
Christmas tree Zara trespass
I like that one
Cozy trespass Zara Joules hunter
Ready to explore