And a few light hearted moments to help us along.
Just a few days ago a dear friend lost her father and yesterday DIL lost her grandmother after a long and painful illness.
Even when everyone knows the end is near it doesn’t make it any easier when it happens.
All that can be done to help is to be there when you’re wanted and stay away when you’re not, hard as that is.
The phone call that DIL had been dreading came and she and The Rev made a hasty dash across the country to Leeds to be there with her Grandma when she passed.
That left the logistical issue of what to do with the children who at school unaware of the drama unfolding around them.
That would be my cue to step in: “I’ll pick them up from school, I’ll feed them, they’ll stay overnight, I’ll get them to school tomorrow. Don’t worry about the dog, I’ll take her as well. Just go.”
Easy enough, feed them, tire them out and get ’em to bed. Sounds like plan.
Of course it being Monday, I had Munki with me just to spice things up a bit.
While we waited for school to finish, Munki and me took the dog for a run on the field. Now what do you wear when the weather is bright, a bit breezy and it’s early enough in the year for there to still be a chill in the air? Everything!
Munki chose an eclectic mix of clothing for the outing, including my scarf.
It’s been a few years since I’ve done the school run. I’d forgotten how frantic it all gets. Trying to play down the drama of the situation, I kept the kids as informed as possible, trying my best not to upset them. Being bright kids though, they worked out the score in seconds.
So that gave me three alternately upset, hyper and mischievious children, as well as a daft dog to feed, clean up after and entertain.
That was the school bit done, so far so good. Next part of the plan: Food.
Pasta and garlic bread, works every time. Some kids got messier than others so I decided a bath might be in order. Munki played happily in the bath.
Clingon No 2 came in, looked a bit wistful for a minute before asking if she could get in too.
Clingon No 3 then came in, looked a bit wistful then asked if she could get in as well. Why not? The more the merrier! Shove up, I’ll get in ( only joking).
In went the kids, in went the bubble bath, on went the jets.
Result: A lorra lorra bubbles
Munki left about 5.30. And then there were two (and the dog). Agility class kept Clingon No 2 and the dog amused for an hour or so, Clingon No1 went to Lashes’. Before we knew it it was bedtime. Thank God!!
That was all good training for this morning. OH MY GOD!!
Did I really used to get three snail pace kids up and ready for school every single day?
The circular conversations; ‘Have you done your teeth? Have you washed properly? No you haven’t go and do it again. Where’s your shoes? Make the sandwiches etc. etc. etc. My God, never let it be said that being a Mum is an easy life.
And all the while the dog bounded round. “Take me out, take me out, take me out” I pretty much just wanted to sit in a corner and rock.
For some bizarre reason, Cligon No 1 told me that they leave for school at 8.20 for an 8.45 start. ‘Bloody hell’, I thought, ‘the traffic must be bad in the morning, it’s only a few minutes away.’ “We’d better leave at 8.15 then to be on the safe side.”
We turned up at a deserted school at precisely 8.21. WHAAAAAT?
After a 20 minute stroll through the woods I shoved them through the school gates with a sigh of relief. Can I go back to bed now? ‘
Still the dog bounded around so it was back into the woods to take her for a proper walk before returning her to her rightful owners who were now back from Leeds, emotionally and physically drained.
I was glad of the walk in the park, it gave me a chance to reflect. The morning was cool and dank and felt like autumn. It suited my mood perfectly. The daffodils looked garish and out of place in the calm, grey stillness of the deserted woods. Too late for the schoolkids, too early for the dog walkers. There was only me, the dog and a few pigeons coo cooing gently in the trees. Perfect.
I wished I’d taken a proper camera with me, it’s always the best way to calm my nerves, taking photos. Still, the phone doesn’t do a bad job. Here are today’s offerings: