Wednesday, 27 January 2010

Bathroom, briefly

I often tell Sam that his food is too hot - wait a minute, blow on it! - so he doesn't dive in and burn his mouth.

Tonight as he was having his pre-bath wee, he managed to wee a bit on his hand.

Warm mummy! he remarked as he felt the temperature of the yellow liquid.

Then he said, Sam blow on it as he attempted to blow on his own wee - while still weeing.

Tuesday, 26 January 2010

About that running...

I just need to put in writing that I am now running 5 km every second day in about 30 minutes.

Never mind the fact that I look like a homeless person crossed with a lollipop lady in my cobbled together outfit, which is the result of the need for lots of layers (minus 5 degrees here still) and visibility and my lack of money to buy fancy running trousers. (If I am honest, I also don't want to go into a proper shop and buy appropriate attire for fear of being pointed at by the fit, young sales assistant as an imposter -"Call yourself a runner? Ha ha ha ha ha ha!").

No, this doesn’t matter because in the unlikely event that I saw anyone I knew while doing this running I would a) pretend to not recognise them and b) they would not recognise me anyway.

The first kilometre is still really, really tough. Someone said that I should "listen to my body" when it comes to exercise. But if I did this, I would not run at all because when I start running my body is screaming very loudly STOP! NOW! REST! What is this NONSENSE?!

But if I ignore the screaming and keep putting one foot in front of the other something fantastic happens. I start getting into some kind of rhythm, and suddenly my gasping for breath becomes more regular and I start to concentrate on the world around me. And for those 30 minutes, I am able to shut out everything else and just see the snow and the sky and the tarmac.

And with the brilliant addition of a running playlist beating in my ears, I find that I am able to conquer that last "killer hill" (thanks Tina) at a reasonable pace and make it home - sweaty, out of breath and tired, but exhilarated, extremely pleased with myself, and happy too.

If I keep it up for a few more weeks, I might just brave that sports shop and treat myself to something with “go faster” stripes on it.

Sunday, 17 January 2010

New baby

You know you should be worried when people start calling your husband to offer him congratulations.

After literally months of hearing non-stop about the pros and cons of this camera vs. that camera, ISO whatchamacall-its, full frame vs. cropped sensor and other blah de blah, Aksel finally went and bought a new one - a 5D Mark ll..... with lenses.

The man in the shop subtly won him over by mentioning that this was the one that "professionals" buy.

And now I am a camera widow. Left alone while he learns all the new possibilities that his new baby offers him.

The up side is that Aksel takes really good pictures. And now (so I am told) with this new desirable they are going to be even better. I am particularly interested in the new portrait lens that promises to smooth out the wrinkles and take off 5 lbs and 10 years ( I'm sure that's what he said, I mean at those prices it must perform some magic, mustn't it?).

I also inherit his "old" camera, which I need to learn how to use, but this is much more likely now that I am allowed to get my hands on it.

Wednesday, 6 January 2010

Things I learnt over Christmas

Today was the first day since December 16th that I have been alone in the house. We've had a really great Christmas and New Year - in stark contrast to several previous years that have been full of illness and loss and terrible news. Aksel and I had almost become accustomed to plans being dramatically and disastrously cancelled around December and January due to emergency hospital visits and other such fun stuff. But even as I kept half expecting for the fever to hit or the -itus to develop, it just didn't.

I almost don't want to mention how calm and beautifully bright it all was for fear of jinxing myself for the rest of January. But, it really was.

A couple of near-disasters that turned out ok in the end:
  • The Tree - we totally overestimated the size of the living room, the strength of two adults (one of which was encumbered with a very cold two-year-old), and the size of the sledge, and we underestimated the effort required to chop down our own 60 kg, 6.5 ft evergreen in the forest and drag it back to our house. What started as a romantic idea of getting our own tree in the snow nearly turned into a scene from the National Lampoon Christmas Vacation. At one point, Aksel and I were both ready to give up and let the "grown-ups" sort it out. After much crying and mopping up of snow and reluctantly admitting that we were the grown-ups, we did manage to get a really beautiful (big) Christmas tree this year that everyone enjoyed dancing around in true Danish style.
  • The Snow - my parents' flight on the 23rd December was cancelled. We panicked. I cried. I thought of all the food that no-one was going to eat. And then I managed to book them on a much later flight from a different airport. So they got here after all. And everyone sighed in relief (not least my sister and brother-in-law who thought they might have two extra unexpected guests for Christmas!)

And things I learnt:

  • Samuel's optimal number of adults in the house at any one time is about 5. This pretty much satisfies his need for attention and activity. Throw in a few older children as a bonus and he is very happy. Little social satellite he is.

  • Anna can devour books, especially if she is allowed to sit around in her pyjamas all day. Next year: buy her more books.

  • Samuel can sleep in his cot in the day - who knew!?

  • My cleaning mojo is dramatically increased by the amount of guest activity over the Christmas period. In fact, inviting people round generally is a very good incentive for the Little and Often method.

  • Ditto having a large Christmas tree in the living room resulting in pine needles in places where pine needles should never go.

  • I can make meringues.

  • I can almost make sushi.

  • I can make a very good chocolate fondant thingy.

  • And mince pies!

  • And I can run - Aksel and I have been encouraging each other to go for a run. And it is working. Despite freezing temperatures, snow, and darkness and the requirement for wearing a luminous (very fetching) yellow vest and numerous diode lights.