Less than three weeks to go to the Big Day! Is all your shopping done yet? With my little hiccup of a week in hospital with Star I’m now falling behind with quite a few things on my shopping list to get. I’ve been checking out what is popular with the kids this year as mine can’t seem to make their minds up and I came across this fantastic list of Dream Toys Here at Argos.
I’m surprised at how many toys come around again. I remember Eldest Daughter having a Furby first time around. She loved it, but I think at the time I played with it just as much as her.
Now you can get the fabulous Furby Boom, bright and colourful and incredibly interactive. The more
you your child plays with it, the more it learns. Not only interactive but addictive!
Another interactive, and one that’s definitely on my girl’s Christmas lists to Santa is the Teksta Puppy, available in pink and blue. It has over 100 interactive play features and comes with a ball and a bone.
|Teksta Puppy Pink|
How about something for the boys? Lego is always a big hit and this is Lego City Coast Guard Patrol is bound to be a Christmas favourite.
|Lego city Coast Guard Patrol|
Kids too young for their own Tablet, then the Leappad and Innotab3 are fantastic alternatives with loads of learning opportunities and colours to suit both boys and girls.
|Innotab3 and Leappad|
Still not found something suitable? Then pop over to Argos and see the rest of their Dream Toys for Christmas right here
On Monday I brought Star into hospital to have a manipulation on her neck to try and get it straight again.
The day started fine, with Star settling in on the ward and having a lesson with the school teacher there. We had a chat with the consultant who told us all the gritty details of what they would be doing in the theatre, all the possible outcomes, what could go wrong and why they had to do it. It wasn’t easy to listen too but we knew it had to be done. We signed the consent form.
Star was taken down to theatre around 1.30pm and we stayed with her while she was put under the anaesthetic. Then we left her.
Nearly three hours later the consultant came to speak to us. They had a few problems in the theatre, one being some soft tissue wedged between the misplaced bones, but they believe they’ve put the bones back. However, it was not as stable as they had hoped and so they fitted her with a halo collar while she was still under the anaesthetic. Then he took us to see her which was really difficult. Star was incredibly distressed and she looked awful.
The halo collar is to prevent her from moving her neck at all, it keeps it perfectly straight. The collar consists of a vest made of plastic which is lined with sheepskin. She cannot take it off. Around her head is a metal band which is screwed into her skull by eight screws. The band, or halo, is attached to the vest by metal rods. None of it can be removed by anyone but a doctor.
Star has been so brave but she really doesn’t like the halo collar, who can blame her really? She knows it is screwed in and is totally freaked out by it. It’s hot, itchy, uncomfortable, sore, heavy and just plain ugly. She will have to keep it on for six weeks, we can only pray that by this time her neck will be fixed.
I don’t think we realised just how distressing it would be. We were told that the halo collar might be used but they couldn’t tell us for definite before she went into theatre. Because she was in theatre so long we realised that it was probably because they were fitting the halo. I will never forget how I felt when we went to meet her and I saw it for the first time. I couldn’t even cuddle her properly.
Star has never really been a cuddly person, but I so miss getting close to her, even kissing her is awkward, those pins could have your eye out! The first time I saw the wounds in her skull I felt like vomiting, but I had to hide my feelings so as not to distress her further. You soon get used to them though. I would be quite happy to clean them, which of course will be my job once she is home from hospital.
We tried to prepare her for the halo but we didn’t want to scare her too much and of course we didn’t know for sure it was going to be fitted. So we omitted the fact that it would be screwed into her skull. She didn’t take this too well, who would? She still keeps asking to have it off constantly, but you can see that she is getting used to it.
She has also been feeling pain in her neck, just as much as before the manipulation, but that’s normal. The pain will be controlled with drugs until she feels better. The first time she moved off the bed (to use a commode) she had a really bad shaking fit which was really scary. Just one day later though and she’s helping herself off the bed and walking to the toilet. She would shake a little but she was determined to do it.
I thought that her neck would be straight but I noticed straight away that it wasn’t. The consultant said they had over compensated so that she was slightly bent in the opposite direction. This is in case the bones decided to pull back. But what if they don’t? I’m having trouble trying to understand this idea. I thought the halo was used to stop her neck moving after the manipulation, so how would the bones slip back anyway? I have to trust the doctors though, they obviously know more than me.
Today, day three and Star has been up out of bed a few times. Her teacher had her sitting at a table making cookies. I think Star was about three quarter’s there, she was just going through the motions, but carried on without complaint and was proud of the end result, even though she couldn’t eat more than a nibble. She was taken to the stairs by the physio therapist who made her walk up and down them, which she did without complaint but was happy to get back to bed afterwards. She didn’t move again all day.
This is Star this afternoon, relaxing in front of her bedside tv.
I love snow. It rarely snows at Christmas time yet it’s something we associate with the holiday. Cards and decorations depict pictures of snow and snowmen. I just think it would be lovely to have a truly white Christmas where we can stay warm and cosy in our new home admiring the glistening white through the patio doors. Of course the littlies would want to go out and play.
There would be time for that, we could build a snowman too. Then afterwards we would come in and get dry and warm and snuggle up in front of Christmas movies. I can’t think of a more lovely way to spend Christmas day.
I love the whole build up to Christmas, writing cards, wrapping presents, decorating the tree, singing carols, every moment is special. Then there is seeing the littlies in their school nativity plays and carol concerts. It’s all so wonderful. On Christmas day itself I like to keep things special by playing carols and lighting candles to remember the loved ones that are no longer with us. If I could I’d bring them back for Christmas day, but that’s not possible so a little time remembering them is the best I can do.
I love kids parties, I’ve been doing them for years (I’ve two grown-up children as well as the littlies)
I’ve always started well in advance, picking out the theme first, then planning the food, the decorations, the games, every little detail. Here is a My Little Pony Party I had for my daughter’s seventh birthday.
I’m just the same with grown-up parties, everything has to be planned to the finest detail.
Christmas parties are my favourite, we have one every year. It’s great getting friends and family around for some seasonal party fun.
Here are some of my time saving party planning tips:
- Pick a theme, it doesn’t have to be too specific but it makes it easier to plan your food and decorations around a theme.
- Find Shortcuts, homemade delicacies are lovely, but why put so much strain on yourself. Don’t try to make everything your self.
- Find help and delegate, it’s not fair for just one person to be responsible for everything, pass the jobs around, ask family or friends to take on the roll of table laying, or putting up decorations etc.
- Start gathering items you need well in advance, party plates, table clothes, decorations, spread the cost and shopping stress.
- If you are having a fancy dress party then try out the Party Planner App from Fancy Dress Ball. It’s an easy to use Facebook app. where you can plan your party, choose your theme and invite your quests. It’s quick and easy and will also help your guests to choose their party outfits.
I’m loving the fancy dress costumes for Christmas at Fancy Dress Ball, from Elf onsies to Santa outfits, reindeers to snowmen, they have a huge choice, better than I’ve seen anywhere else and all in one place. . Definitely a time saver.
|Images source Fancy Dress Ball|
Collaborative post with Fancy Dress Ball, all thoughts and opinions are my own.
I’ve not written much about my mum on this blog before but I believe the experience of five years ago changed me and made me look at life so differently. I’ve been pondering what to actually write, even considering extracts from the blog I was writing at the time, but to be honest it’s not easy reading and not easy for me to go over it all again.
So please let me share some facts about my mum.
She was an older mum when she had me, already in her late 30s. When I came along I had two teenage brothers. I wasn’t the last child however, when I was eight she gave me a baby brother.
As a young child I remember her preferred birthday presents were chocolate and hair dye. She always died her hair a really dark brown colour, almost black which is what colour it was before she went grey. I believe my eldest son has inherited her dark thick hair, I know I didn’t!
She was always incredibly close to her mum and became her carer for many years when she got sick.
Both of her husbands died suddenly at early ages.
Mum was very musical, she could play the piano, accordion and sing. I have inherited none of her talents.
On November 30th 2008 mum was taken to hospital very ill. On 11th December she was diagnosed with terminal cancer of the liver and lungs. On Christmas day 2008 she passed away in a hospice. 25 days. Some people have less notice I know, but is it easier knowing that someone is going to die, or having someone die suddenly? I think I can speak from experience, neither is easier, both are so so hard.
As the years have passed the pain has eased slightly. At one point I held on tight to the pain because it felt like pain was all I had left. Time doesn’t heal, it just helps you deal with things better. I still miss my mum every day and always will.
In memory of mum, January 2nd 1931 – December 25th 2008