Sunday, August 21, 2011

Sucky Sunday

We spent 3 hours today with Avie in A&E.

I hate that place. In less than 2 years, we have found ourselves there 3 separate times and each time it is nerve-racking, scary and frustrating.

This morning we went to the Farmers Market at Milford. We were having a great time, checking out the local produce and the petting farm when Avalon started running on the gravel road and fell over, straight onto her face. I froze, it took her a few seconds to cry from the shock and I picked her up and hugged her to me. Ironically this happened directly in front of the St. John's Ambulance crew. I walked with her over to a grassy hill to sit down and nurse her when I looked at her head and realised a rock had actually embedded in her forehead! I couldn't believe it! I felt sick for my poor baby and had to hold back the tears as I took her to the ladies at St. John's. Avalon had already stopped crying at this point but all they could do was clean it a little (she cried again as anyone came near her head) put a plaster over it and sent us on our way to A & E.

After a 3 hour wait at Royal Surrey with thankfully, Avalon in relatively good spirits despite a rock protruding from her head, a nurse decided to see if she could remove the rock with an instrument (we had been told to wait for a Doctor) and as I fed Avalon, the nurse worked the rock out. Avalon screamed and thrashed about but as soon as it was out she was fine again. She has a butterfly stitch plaster over it to close the wound. I am so thankful that is all it took.

She slept well in the car and has been great this afternoon, colouring, watching the Wiggles and playing with her watering can in the garden.

I am reminded how precious she is, how life can change in an instant and how grateful I am for her health. It could have been worse and I hope to not visit the A&E again- that place seriously gives me the heebie jeebies.

G I R L . . . .

I love going about my day and hearing a great song from the past playing in a cafe, store etc... I heath this yesterday whilst having lunch in EAT at festival place.

Saturday, August 20, 2011


Today was one of those days. The ones where you take note and smile; This is your life and it is fab.

The morning started like any other, except for the wonderful promise that a Saturday morning always brings. By 8.30am, G had suggested we head to London to the aquarium at South Bank. It seemed like a bit of a trek to London (well, to me anyway) ridiculous I know as the drive is no more than an hour, but we (I) threw caution to the wind and soon we were setting off in the trusty polo with Avie nestled in her seat in the back, toy kitty in hand.

I lived in London from 2005-2007. More specifically, I lived rather close to South Bank and count it as one of my top 3 favourite spots in London, surprising then that I had never ventured to the London Aquarium, or  not so surprising given how incredibly BROKE I was during those years, my student years, even though I hadn't seen the inside of a university lecture hall since 2003.

It was an easy drive (says I, the passenger) and I LOVE seeing central London by car. It is a whole different perspective after years of public transport and pavement pounding. Driving over the Westminster Bridge, past Big Ben, hanging half out the window to take photos felt exciting. Every visit to the city is a reminder again how much I love London and consider it my (one of many) home(s).

Avalon loved the aquarium, getting up close with the fish, sharks, turtles and penguins. We played in the park on the south bank, ate lunch in EAT and I fantasized over the lovelies of Foyles.

We timed our trip perfectly as we were met with a heavy storm on the drive home (Avalon slept in the car there and back) but by the time we reached home the sky had turned a bright blue, white clouds and jet streams- Avalon had woken with a smile (always a good sign) so we decided to take a walk through a nature reserve about 5 minutes from home. A fitting end to a great day.

It is so important to take note of these moments, to feel grateful and blessed by our lives. I am a self confessed 'glass half full' kind of gal so I need a reminder to stop and smell the wonderful roses that are around me from time to time. Life is pretty great.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011


"Change is the essence of life. Be willing to surrender what you are for what you could become."

I have had a sense of melancholy of late watching Avalon go from baby to toddler. Time is rushing forward and although I am excited and marvelled by every new development I am also saddened that she is no longer a little babe. Her personality is strong, she is extremely impressionable and she is nothing short of a delight. Looking at her, I have my moments of broodiness, I feel an ache for another baby and then as quickly as the feeling overcame me, it dissipates. For now.

Until I was a mother I never truly understood how a person's life would change.
More importantly, how I would change. I couldn't fathom how mummyhood would grip me, consume me and alter my being.

At 28 years old, I became a mum earlier than I thought I ever would. I viewed parenthood as the hardest role one could undertake, and I knew I wanted to 'do it right' when the time was right.  I likewise swore up and down that I wouldn't become one of 'those' women who only spoke about her children, who started the day with baby sick on their shoulder without a second thought, who disregarded so much of her former self to be Mum. 'Those' people who stopped being fun, stopped having a voice of interest. I would go so far as to say I looked at those that did with a perceived air of disdain. Silly rabbit.

I challenge anyone that makes a child their number one priority to NOT be consumed.You live, eat, breath and sleep (somewhat) for your child. You (may) stay at home with them, be with them 24 hours a day, you create distance from those that do not understand the momentous shift in your life. I realise now how NATURAL this is, how normal this is, and I how I wouldn't want to be any other way.

I could never have imagined I would be so passionate about natural parenting. That I'd be breastfeeding her at 16 months old (and counting). That she would frequently share our bed and  I would not pursue strict routines for her life.

I imagine friends and family look upon my journey with bemusement. But that is life. I am learning. It is OK.

I am a mother.
I am a partner.
I have hopes and dreams that are totally my own.
I am changed through my life experience and I wouldn't want it any other way.

The 'old' me, who was not a mother is still very much present, she is not lost.
As I am passionate about natural parenting, I am still so about social justice... art... music.

This was my journey to me. I am still me, the me I was always supposed to be.


We've had a few new words from the past 2 days... This child is growing too fast for my liking! I cannot keep up and need more time to capture. every. moment...


Oh and when she wants milk, she says 'MILK' loud and clear! For the longest time she said what sounded like 'Book' (a combination of boobs and milk is my assumption) but now there is no mistaking... including the grandiose pulling down of my shirt in public. Welcome to toddlerhood.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

A toast to you my love...

So my wonderful husband has scored himself a new job. I am so proud of him as he has been working hard over the last few months with recruiters and interviewing with a number of companies, looking for the next step in his career, and a new move for our family.

He is leaving the army after 8 1/2 years. It was time for him to move on and was certainly time for our family to take the next step to 'Civi Street.' We have been married 4 years and in that time we have moved to Germany and then to the UK. We would have been moving again last March if he hadn't signed off as the Signals regiment moves every 3 years.

There is absolutely no love lost between the 'army' and I. 'They' have robbed us, cheated us, had a total disregard for our family and others and have caused a huge amount of stress to Grant and I and regrettably between Grant and I. So, suffice to say, I am looking forward to saying farewell... and FUCK YOU.

Grant is thrilled with the job offer. He had 2 interviews with this particular software company and said he felt like a good fit within the team and the work was an exciting advancement to what he has been doing. The company is global and have offices in Australia. *happy dance*

So, if all goes to plan, G should start in November, which will also mean we are moving house (bluergh... I hate moving) but we are excited to start the next chapter of our lives outside the army 'bubble.'

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Give us a kiss, Love!

So Grant was up in London town yesterday, thankfully the rioting had stopped (or not started for the day) and I was working... boo hoo... Avalon spent the day with her Granny as she does eevry Tuesday and I tell you what, I just burst to get home to my girl at 5pm.

Last night we hung out, reading stories and colouring which is her absolute favourite thing! She could literally colour for 30 minutes or more (an eternity in baby years) nothing enthralls her that long except maybe The Wiggles. Ironically, she has a Wiggles colouring book and of course, every picture is 'Daddy.'

While we were colouring I snapped a few piccies and caught a few kisses. I could die from the sweetness, I tell you.

I showed her the photographs on the digital display of my camera and twice she said 'Avalon.' I could hardly believe it! My heart bursts with pride thanks to this girl... so sappy to anyone but her Mama but really, I could watch and marvel her all day long.

She says so many words now I can hardly remember them all. I am astonished at how well we can verbally communicate at 16 months old. Maybe this shouldn't be a revelation to me but she is such a vocally confident little girl. 'Again' 'More' 'Round & Round the Garden' 'Birdies' 'Flower' 'Frog'-- there are new developments every day.

Speaking of kisses, she loves to push G and my head together to kiss, all the while having kisses bestowed on her too... please tell me this will always be the way. My heart is so full from her love.

Wordless Wednesday

London. ❤

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

July Book Club

I loved this book. I have been meaning to reading it for the longest time; picking it up from Oxfam and on our shelf it sat untouched for months. My mum had recommended it to me (one of the few people I trust judgement of novels on.) 

"If you thought the gothic novel died with the 19th century, this will change your mind... in Zafon's hands, every scene seems to come from an early Orson Welles movie... one gorgeous read." Stephen King

Hidden in the heart of the old city of Barcelona is the 'cemetery of books', a labyrinthine library of obscure and forgotten titles... to this library, a man brings his 10 year old son, Daniel, on cold morning in 1945. He chooses one book which is 'La Sonbra del Viento' by Julian Carax... When he is older, Daniel is approached by a figure who reminds him of a character from the story, a character who turns out to be the devil. This man is tracking down every last copy of Carax' work and burning it. What begins as a case of literary curiosity turns into a race to find the truth behijnd the life and death of Julian Carax and to save those he left behind.

Mr Chartwell was the July pick for my work's book club. It was well-written and unique but not necessarily a book I would have picked myself.

A remarkable debut. These are some of the best evocations of depression you'll read (Observer)

July 1964. In bed at his home in Kent, Winston Chruchill is waking up. There's a visitor in the room, someone he hasn't seen for a while, a dark, mute bulk, watching him with tortured concentration. It's Mr Chartwell. Why has he come to visit? For Mr Chartwell is a huge, black dog.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Music Monday

The one and only, Jill Scott.... 'He Loves Me'... This song never fails to give me goose bumps.

I have her album Experience: Jill Scott 826+ and it is AHHMAZE-ING.

This song IS love.

"Let not the hours pass by in the dark. Kindle the lamp of love with thy life." - Rabindranath Tagore

As I type this post I can hear the animated voices and babbles of Grant and Avalon playing upstairs.
The giggles, the stories, the laughter is what makes me feel thankful everyday for this life.

I have written many a time about my feelings for my husband, in particular to the kind of parent he is. I do not doubt that anyone reading this may be tired of my sentiments but I cannot help but express what he means to me. I have come to the realisation that part of me feels undeserving of such love and support. I don't know a definite cause to this but probably going back to feeling less than worthy and having low self esteem. I blame a hangover from my teens.

Every night, Grant bathes or showers with Avie, reads to her and helps her to sleep. This all after a full day at work. He has never once complained that he is too tired to do it, never once even asked me to do it so he can do something else. It is because he relishes that time with her, and for him, it is just the beginning of their night together.

When she was feeding constantly (up until about 12 months) I was the only one that could take care of the night-time parenting. Grant would wake and rock her back to sleep when we were sure her needs had been met. Over the past 16 months, Grant has taken over from the time he gets home at 5pm and now, through until 5am. All after being at work and studying. I have realised more and more through discussions with friends just how lucky I am to have such an attached parent as a partner.

Grant soothes her back to sleep every night when she awakens (usually 2-3 times) until 5am when she has her milky cuddles with me. She has been in her own room since her first birthday (unless of course she is unwell or distressed) and Grant gets up several times a night to accommodate her needs and to let me sleep. I hardly have the words to convey how grateful I am to him-- how in awe I am of his devotion. I have had a very hard time coping with the sleep deprivation of the past 18 months and for the last 4 months he has taken over the night-time parenting solely (except when Mama milk will only do.)

At 5am Avalon bounds into our bedroom with huge toothy smiles and rests her head on the mattress, 'Hello' she says and her and I cuddle and feed for a good hour. I love this time and have such an appreciation of it as she has gotten older. I will be terribly sad when it ends. I feel refreshed for the time I have to relax and wind down at night and ready to have an amazing day with her.

I cannot take for granted how hands on G is, how committed to our parenting philosophies he is. I have heard some women say the following about their partners:

'____ doesn't mind us co-sleeping as long as ____ and I don't go on his side of the bed'
'____ will not babywear as he doesn't think it's manly'
'I have to keep ____ quiet at night as ____ needs his sleep.'

I hope the above situations work for their entire family but to me, all it does is remind me of what I have.

Bless my attached man.

The wonderful SM says it perfectly,

"I believe a real man will put his baby first, even if he has to meet his OWN need, be that make his own dinner, iron his own clothes, share a bed with you and the baby or meet his own sexual needs."

G carries her all weekend in the Ergo, he sleeps beside her much of the night as she needs him and gladly has done since her birth. His patience is humbling (I wish I had it!) and his love for her incredible.

Let's hear it for awesome Dads... Let's hear it for unconditional partners.... and thank you again, Big Daddy, I do not or cannot tell you enough what you mean to me.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Broken White

"My best works are erotic displays of mental confusions (with intrusions of irrelevant information)." Marlene Dumas

Jule-die vrou
Marlene Dumas
125 x 105cm

Jule-die Vrou is a disembodied portrait painting framed in extreme close-up; only the model's eyes and lips are fully rendered attributes of seduction and sexuality. The rest of the painting is obliterated by a corpulent fleshy pink, suggestive of femininity, sin, violence and womanhood. The contrast between representation, and abstraction suggests a psychological disparity, where morality, representation, and social convention are questioned. 

Patricia Ellis writes;                                                                           
Marlene Dumas's provocative paintings of women, children, celebrities and people of colour are as psychologically disturbing as they are violently beautiful. Championing the under-represented classes, her characters occupy an unholy ground where the viewer's individual morality, ethics and adherence to ideological convention are questioned.

Marlene Dumas makes paintings with no concept of the taboo. Racism, sexuality, religion, motherhood and childhood are all presented with chilling honesty. Undermining universally held belief systems, Dumas corrupts the very way images are negotiated. Stripped of the niceties of moral consolation, Marlene Dumas's work provokes unmitigated horror. She offers no comfort to the viewer, only an unnerving complicity and confusion between victims and oppressors.

"It was my first time in a peepshow so when the girl smiled at me I said "Only looking", and she replied "That's how I got started here too".

Removing the hierarchical value system of perception, Marlene Dumas presents unsettling truths as paintings because there is no other means to communicate their primal essence. Working from her own photos and pictures found in magazine and film archives, her canvases act as sociological studies. Subjects, already at one remove, are further physically and dispassionately distanced by her instinctive and disquieting painting style.

Often described as an 'intellectual expressionist', Marlene Dumas blurs the boundaries between painting and drawing. Bold lines and shapes mix seamlessly with ephemeral washes and thick gestural brushwork. By simplifying and distorting her subjects, Marlene Dumas creates intimacy through alienation. Her subjects' assertive stares suggest that her paintings aren't actually about them, but the viewer's own reaction to their perverse circumstance. With deceptive casualness, Marlene Dumas exposes the monstrous capacity belied by 'civilised' human nature.

Beneath Marlene Dumas's hard-hitting social dialogue is a deep-rooted ideological equality. As one of the most profoundly feminist contemporary artists, Marlene Dumas uses painting as a means to personally navigate history. Her holistic approach to creation and subject undermines the discomfort and restriction of traditional rationale. Embracing the totality of human experience, Marlene Dumas finds an eternal beauty not in immediate pleasure, but in the timeless gap between the cherished and unspeakable.

I first discovered Dumas' work as a fan of the music of Pearl Aday, I have read that her song 'Broken White' was inspired by Dumas. I love the inspiration behind her work and find her paintings beautiful and confronting.

'Broken White' -Pearl Aday

It ain't broken 'till you scream and scold and chide it
The knife ain't stabbin' 'till you feel your hand around it
Blood and spurn
Take your turn
Buck up, don't you cry
Don't cry
Steely white
A seething sight
Make her broken white

Let's call it a war
It don't hurt no more
I fall up from the floor
Your holy ghost is a holy whore
Let's call it a war
I don't scare no more
I fall up from the floor
Your holy ghost is a holy whore

Psycho dancin' want it right in your face, you got it
Spike up your boots, it's time to fight your
Way on out, you got it
Bitch, you'll learn
Your pain is earned
Suck it up, do your time
No time
A feely fright
It just ain't right
Call her broken white

Let's call it a war
It don't hurt no more
I fall up from the floor
Your holy ghost is a holy whore
Let's call it a war
I don't scare no more
I fall up from the floor
Your holy ghost is a holy whore

Melancholy Calling

I will be turning 30 in 10 weeks. Well, in 74 days to be precise.Whether a coincidence or not, I've been reflecting on the last 10 years and how I got to where I am.

I think, in part, this reflection has come as I'm crazily aware how fast life is passing me by. I can't believe my baby is 16 months and that, in fact, she is more a little girl than a pink,chubby babe. I feel since her birth, the days and weeks have torpedoed past. I just don't know where the time has gone. I can't believe I left Australia 6 years ago! 8 years since I was strolling the halls of the Arts Department at Griffith University!

What would the 20 year old me think about the 30 year old me? Am I where I 'wanted' to be? Have my goals and desires changed? 

When I was 20 I was in my second year of University. I was in a dead end and very unhealthy relationship (one that I stayed in, stupidly, another 4 years.) I was living with friends on the Gold Coast; dreaming of travel, imagining an 'escape,' not appreciating the opportunities that lay ahead (opportunities available purely because my 'life' was truly just starting.) Hindsight is a marvellous thing.

So, looking back (as the list maker I am) what have I accomplished in that time?
I spontaneously booked a trip to Europe; 5 weeks travelling with a girlfriend. 
I graduated University. 
I listened to that internal voice that was getting increasingly more urgent! "This is not IT. Leave. Go back to London." 
I booked a one-way ticket and found my feet in a city I will always hold dear to my heart, a city I'll always feel at home in. 
I took *somewhat* steps to improve my health and self-esteem, in short I lost 20kgs. 
I ended THAT relationship, 5 years late, but I did it. 
I met the man of my dreams- a cliché but the truth. 
I married the man of my dreams and started a family, a love I could never fathom. 

... and being that I am a glass half empty kinda gal, what have I not accomplished I think I should have?
I do not, nor am even close to, owning a home. This is probably the one I am finding most difficult to accept, I want the best for Avalon, I wish for her what I had as a child.
We have not 'put down roots'-- not by house, area or country.
My career is not where I hoped it would be. In fact, let's me real. I have a job, not a career.
I have not been to Nepal. My Mother and I had made a pact that we would travel to Nepal for my 30th birthday. Nope.
I have put on 7kgs to that 20kgs I had worked so hard to loose and thus, affirming, that some demons are still alive and well.

So, where do I find myself? My family is so important to me and just to have Grant and Avalon in my life is so fulfilling. Avalon is my greatest accomplishment, followed by being in a respectful and loving partnership. I am proud of my tertiary education and travel and GRATEFUL that I had the opportunities I had. This is a self indulgent reflection. I realise I am lucky to have the things I have.

Life cannot be planned to a T. I get that. I have my goals and dreams for the next 10 years and will do all I can to achieve those. All in all, I feel pretty darn blessed.

‎"Do not spoil what you have by desiring what you have not; but remember that what you now have was once among the things you only hoped for." -Epicurus-

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Wordless Wednesday.

A Toutes Jambes Editorial by Terry Richardson for French Vogue

16 months of love...

watching youtube music videos with Dad

In the park on our way to Budding Babes (natural parenting group)

Reading 'At the Market'


Avalon is 16 months old tomorrow.

I amazed at how quickly she has turned from a baby to a little girl. I think the transition to walking has had a huge influence and to then confidently running was a further pang to the heart strings.

She loves to be on her feet and unless she is tired isn't as content being carried in the Ergo (or in arms for that matter.) She is far to independant... and curious... to what is going on around her.

She wants to be in it. A part of it.

Her vocabulary astounds us every day, not in the 'Oh-my-child-is-uber-intelligent' kind of way- but that there are new words and new sentences every single day. This has really taken off in the past month and she mimics us alot now (so would REALLY be the time to start curbing the potty mouth!)

Some of her words are: Shoes, Socks, Crocodile, Duck, Dog, Hello, Phone, Nannie, Daddy (on from Dadda), Mummy, Baby, Izzy, Kitty, Nana (as in banana), Nani (as in nachi), truck, car (toot! toot!), Peppa, ... and onwards...last night we sang 'Twinkle Twinkle' together- hand actions and all.

She loves to colour and paint... we have bought her a couple of colouring in books and crayons... she loves it and goes nuts for them- I thought she would just eat them but she will take the book and crayon and find a hard surface to scribble on- she also hold the crayons correctly... we may have an artiste here! (tongue planted in cheek!)

Books are her favourite toy. Really. She will happily sit my herself, crossed legged, book in lap and reading to herself.

Listening to her babble away is the sweetest thing. When she wants you to read to her, she brings the book, plonks in your lap and turns the pages... She is so gentle with books too, turning each page delicately.

She has started eating alot more too. At 16 months she is very much a breastfeeding babe but has started having more and more at meal times; she loves bananas, nachi's, english muffins, cheese and Linda McCartney burgers and sausages (ha!) I have doubted our baby led weaning jouring with her at times but seeing her come into her own independantly with perfect health I know it was right for us.

Her Granny takes he swimming on a Tuesday and she loves the water (apparently.) She kicks her legs and I believe there is a challenge to get her out again. I am glad she is turning into a water baby- I grew up in the water and I think it is great for her confidence. She showers with us now more often than bathing... standing under the stream playing her her toys or holding onto the shower head and spraying us (whomever is in with her.)

She adores her father. For every 'Mummy' there are ten 'Daddy's'... I relish this, I do, and I am not surprsied she is a 'Daddy's Girl.'

She is very cuddly and will nestle her head into your shoulder for long hugs. She melts my heart. I find myself rushing home to her after work to see her smiling face. Being back at work, and her huge affection for her Dad, I do cherish our nursing time together as it is just 'ours.' We cuddle up on the couch and chillout- although she is becoming very squirmy and active when she feeds which can be interesting...

We do a web camera call with my parents to Australia every Sunday and she is recognising them and they sing to her which she giggles along to.

She has 11 teeth, and I am pretty sure more on the way very soon (lots of biting of her arms and fingers and grizzly times at night.)

She is growing so very fast and it is truly bittersweet.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Happy Anniversary... Part Deux

... and how could I forget! 2 days ago marks Grant and my anniversary since we met... 6 years ago.

A terrible cliché but truly, where has the time gone? It just feels like yesterday I was introduced to this gorgeous man with a funny accent in a pub in London...

Happy Anniversary...

Today my Mum and Dad have been married 31 years.


You guys ROCK! I love you, and miss you like crazy...

Breastfeeding Awareness Week

Ok... not a feeding photo~ but milk drunk...

This was taken on the weekend by G, what a beautiful place to feed Avalon... and I loved that Grant decided to take this photo

at Godalming Food Festival in July

I love this one...

Did you know?

By breastfeeding Avalon I have decreased my risk of breast, ovarian, uterine and endometrial cancers, plus osteoporosis and rheumatoid arthritis? The longer I feed her, the lower my risks get too and she herself is at a decreased risk of cancer also.

 In the second year (12-23 months), 448 mL of breastmilk provides:
◦29% of energy requirements
◦43% of protein requirements
◦36% of calcium requirements
◦75% of vitamin A requirements
...◦76% of folate requirements
◦94% of vitamin B12 requirements
◦60% of vitamin C requirements
-- Dewey 2001

The World Health Organisation (WHO) recommends breastfeeding 2 years and BEYOND. There is so much more to breastfeeding than nutrition. I can comfort and soothe my daughter immediately and my milk is designed just for her and her needs.

Avalon and I have enjoyed 16 months of a beautiful, nursing relationship~ we have had our ups and downs, but the positives have far outweighed our challenges and I feel so grateful that I have had this experience with her.

Breast is not best- it is NORMAL.

a weekend in Cymru

We have talked about going away for a weekend jolly for quite awhile now.

In fact- the discussion of 'let's have a holiday!' happens a lot in our household with little action. We spent 5 amazing weeks in Australia over Christmas and since then have not been away anywhere else. As wonderful as going home always is, it is also not as relaxing as we would like as our time is spent catching up with folks so the time to just get away and relax was well and truly due.

Even though I have lived in the UK for 6 years, I have seen very little of its countryside (and cities besides London) so we decided to spend 3 days in 'sunny' Wales, in the Vale of Glamorgan to be a little more precise.

We had a fantastic time, just the 3 of us. It was great to 'recharge the batteries' and be in a new place that neither Grant or I had explored before. We stayed in East Cardiff and drove around to various sites over the weekend; Caerphilly and its castle, Castle Coch, Brigend, Coity Castle, Ogmore Castle, Ogmore-on-Sea, Southerndown, Cardiff and Cardiff Bay. The countryside is ezquisite and the time allowed G and I to reconnect a little better; life has had a way of getting us a little off track lately.

I would love to visit again and next time stay here. This cottage was stunning and in the grounds of Ogmore Castle- it was like a dream.

I think Avalon had a great time and travelled so well considering it was such a busy time. The plan now is to do it all again, maybe take a 4-5 day break to Edinburgh to see the city and catch up with friends of ours that live there. Now is the time as life will be very busy over the next 6 months or so with visitors from Australia, my 30th birthday and house move, not to mention a new job for Grant.