Please read before you judge me…

As I hang my head in shame with the realisation of ‘it really has been far too long since I last updated my blog’, I feel I owe you all an explanation of how my time has disappeared. Whether you are a loyal friend/family/follower/mildly curious or have just stumbled to my humble corner of the web through an idle/serendipitous/accidental click please read on. Feel free to pass judgement on my shoddy blog-keeping at the end of this entry.

Several explanations why I have been so lapse at updating this site recently:

1. Trip home

We went back home for 10, amazing, lovely and fun-filled days. The hectic tour of Britain took in memorable 40th birthday celebrations in a Castle in the North of Scotland to precious time with family spent on the South Coast of England. There was also a healthy mix of friends and family in between. If we missed you this time, we will be back in the summer!

The Scottish Castle

The Scottish Castle

The 40th birthday celebrations were one of those hugely fun weekends that leaves one feeling slightly deflated upon returning to normal life, but keep you smiling at the memories for months to come. We were even fortunate enough to have a personalised message from the Laird of the castle himself.

In Melbourne (which I always think of as my home town) there were the usual happy reunions and time spent catching up with all the gossip. However this time our happiness at being there was marred with the difficulty of going through the first steps of putting our lovely home on the market.

Melbourne

Melbourne

Seb was so happy and excited to see his first-best-friend (as he describes him) again. He misses him terribly at times. They literally could not be in the same room for at least 5 minutes and put me in mind of repelling magnets. They just ran around in different directions flapping their arms and calling out each others names. Fortunately this phase only lasted five minutes before the important business of scattering toys all over the house took over.

Seb and I spent our last few days back home on the South coast catching up with our family. We had a happy day exploring Dover Castle with my Dad and sister. I am still stunned that I lived there for years and never went to Dover Castle – it really is amazing place with history stretching from the Iron Age to the Cold War and lots of fairly important bits in between.

At Dover Castle

At Dover Castle

 

On the beach

On the beach

2. Allergies

For weeks now, my whole world has been covered in a sticky, irritating layer of pollen that makes everything in it an uncomfortable shade of yellow. It gets everywhere – in eyes, hair, car, house, dog. The only way I can get to sleep at night is by lathering Vicks on my pillow, which I like to imagine creates an impenetrable barrier between me and the pollen (doesn’t work, but I like the smell). The puffy, red, watery eyes, the constant almost-need to sneeze, the debilitating need to close to a box of tissues at all times, the itchy skin and red nose makes it impossible to function as a normal, sociable human being. The trouble is, being from the UK, I like to be outside in nice weather, seems a shame to miss it after all…

Surely by now all the trees in the vicinity are well and truly fertilized and can get on with photosynthesizing and replenishing the oxygen levels instead? Personally I think insects are a far more efficient method of pollination.

Also, drugs don’t work, so don’t come near me waving antihistamines and nose sprays, thank you very much.

3. Surprise birthday gatherings

Initially it seemed like a good option – a gathering of friends at a local winery to celebrate Garnet’s significant birthday, almost a month after the date would be a wonderful surprise for him. Especially with the help of my organised and brilliant friend. The stress really started when trying to concoct supposedly plausible cover stories. These grew ever wilder and more complicated. By the time we got to the place, I felt as if I was really clutching at straws – and the tales felt very convoluted. However, by involving several passions of Garnet’s – exclusive invitations by a chef to his new venture, handily located at a vineyard etc, I managed to pull it off. He only realised what was going on when we turned up at the place and he started pointing out cars of our friends.

Garnet's 40th

Garnet’s 40th

It was a great evening though, but when the thought of a surprise party rises, unbidden in my mind, I have two words to beat down that spark with. Never and Again.

4. Kindergarten Year coming to a close

My boy’s career as a Kindergartener at his wonderful, Montessori school (Hockessin Montessori School) is coming to end. We have had 3 lovely years in Miss Caroline’s class and are so sad to leave her, but so happy with how far he has come in that time.

The year-end rituals have started with presentation of the Kindergarten projects. Seb’s was on the Olympics – a project that his whole class joined in with a mini olympics just for them. I learnt that he found out about the first olympics and his favourite olympian is Ryan Lochte. Seb was also keen to stress that even though his team came second overall, he was the winner in his event.

Me and my boy

Me and my boy

5. Downton Abby

We are late converts, but that gave us the happy opportunity of having three series to watch. This task has taken place over a couple of months and has made for many hours worth of luxurious immersion viewing. Watching TV like that is like reading a great story. You spend that part of your life totally captivated and caught up in the story – and it is very hard to turn away from.

Now all the charm and subtleties of those relationships have been temporarily removed from my life, all I can do is wander around in the evenings asking ‘why?’

6. Life and all that hurley-burley

Just life – the seemingly endless round of appointments, house work, trying to fit some possible work in, making sure everyone is happy, fed and has enough clean clothes to wear.

In addition to that stuff we have had to face big questions about our future. As I write, the way forward is becoming clearer. It looks as if we will be moving fairly soon, within the US. It will definitely be difficult to leave this idyllic house and its surroundings as well as the great friends and life we have built round us here in the last three years.

Again, we are facing the challenge of letting go and moving to the next stage of life. There are times when I feel I am fighting a deep, inbuilt need to run home and live in the place I love the most.

7. Snatching some alone time

We did have a lovely walk though… A one day family hike in the rain, through a beautiful wood in the Pocono’s to an ancient boulder field left by the last ice age._MG_6980

Back to you

So now my friends, will you forgive me now that most of the reasons for my recent silence have been laid in front of you so honestly? Feel free to pick your three favourites. Know that the gnawing need to put my hands on the keyboard or my eye behind the camera will always bring me back to update this site time and time again!

Fireworks at the Bluerocks

Fireworks at the Bluerocks

More photos here

 

 

4 thoughts on “Please read before you judge me…

  1. John Monaghan

    Another great set of pen pictures. I hadn’t realised that “Young Garnet” was quite so old; then it occurred to me that my own little boy has just had his 39th birthday. And he is getting married in November – better late than never.

    I was out the other week with a group of ex-ICI (AZ) people and some current AZ staff from Macclesfield. The staff from Macc were just waiting to hear about their forthcoming reorganisation – there’s not much security these days, or incentive to make longterm plans when your career is hanging in the balance.

    I hope that your next move goes well. Perhaps choose somewhere with less pollen – Alaska or Oklahoma.

    John

    Reply
  2. Molly

    A lovely set of photos and it is perfectly fine to let life carry on as the blog waits … makes for a lovely catch-up!
    ♡ Molly

    Reply
  3. Lizzie C

    Good stuff Emma, thank you for sharing and I like knowing where you are all at. Onward onward to new adventures. The UK will always be there for you in years to come. Its now that is important and making you and the people around you happy. You’ve made me feel happy already this morning with your blog. Lots of love, Lizzie and family xxxx

    Reply

Looking forward to reading your comments!