Our daughter is eleven months old! We’ve all had a really busy month. She’s been rampaging around the house with a brick trolley, and some words have already exploded. She’s pointing, she’s declaring, she knows what she wants – and is not at all impressed with anything getting in her way. Her baby shape is giving way to a straight-backed toddler.
Our month has largely been themed around change. We’re moving house, our daughter is less baby and more toddler day by day. We’re also looking for places where we can keep things the same, to keep us settled and grounded.
I took my stuff back to work this month, which was strangely stressful. I’d quit my job which was significant, and they needed their laptop back. I needed to prepare myself, in case I bumped into anyone. I enlisted the help of my husband so that he could watch the baby, I showered, I brushed my hair, I put on jeans that didn’t have milk sick on them, I practised my smile and easy-breezy chat. As it worked out, I saw no-one, left my stuff with the receptionist, and it was strangely anti-climactic.
Very odd feeling, but another wave of stuff out the house, and one fewer thing to move with.
Half of our life in our old house has been packed up in boxes. It’s slow work and it’s taking time.
We’re hoping to move in around three weeks, and my husband has started framing things as though we’re going away on holiday: donate or use what you can, pack everything else, and leave out the things you’d need for a three week holiday. This is almost helpful, but I’ve never been on a three week holiday.
There’s something quite confrontational about going through your life and deciding -one object at a time – whether each thing has a place in your new life. I’ve written before about doing the 30-day minimalism game, and taking a full car-boot to the charity shop has been a monthly ritual since our daughter was born. So, I am no stranger to sifting and sorting!
But packing up a house feels tricky and more significant. Trying to do it around an inquisitive 11-month old is also no joke. Everything looks interesting and different to her, and she wants to be involved and included: tying together coathangers, taping up boxes, writing on the boxes with pens, putting things into containers and then taking them out again.
Our daughter is coping really well with all the change, but it’s making her really tired. She’s fine and happy, interested in exploring, and then she crashes, hard.
Staying the same
The more we pack and the more things shift, the more I need some things to stay the same. This feels disproportionately important to me for some reason, like something awful will happen if I don’t. The world will stop spinning, I will stop being me, our family will stop working, we will lose our way. I’m not sure if this need for consistency is for me, or for our daughter, or both. Daily and weekly rituatials I am clinging to include:
- Sourdough, which we make weekly, using this recipe
- Sprouting seeds. My particular favourite is alfalfa
- Reading stories to our daughter. Her current favourite is a squash and a squeeze, by Julia Donaldson
- Our nap and nighttime routines. Our daughter is pleased by things happening that she recognises, and squeals when she recognises things happening.
- Getting out and walking, as part of the walk 1000 miles challenge. We’re currently up to 444 miles, which I’m really proud of.
Anyway, that’s what we’ve got going on right now.
Lots of love,
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