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Wednesday, 19 February 2020

A Little Throwback Catch-Up!

As I mentioned in my last post I said that I'd be back to give you a little round-up of some of our going's on around here, from towards the end of last year to now as I've been away for so long! So here we go! Starting back at the end of October last year with our little girl's Christening. Which took place on what turned out to be a good day weather wise in the end considering the amount of rain that we'd had up to, and then after the day!

The organisation for the day itself started with her dress, which took me a while to find but that I fell in love with as soon as I saw! It was a traditional looking cream Christening dress with vintage affect lace, and was just stunning!

Thankfully I'd bought it in a bigger size in advance though not wanting to miss out, because as it turned out it took us quite a long time to get a date for the Christening. Then I matched it with a pretty white lace cardigan that she already had, and white lace shoes. 

Obviously we had a "Peter Rabbit" theme for the day too! With a "Peter Rabbit" cake which I designed with the help of a bit of inspiration from Pinterest, that was made by a local cake maker. We also had cupcakes courtesy of Sainsbury's that I then decorated with "Flopsie" bunny cake toppers that I'd made, and a lovely "Peter Rabbit" banner and balloons from Etsy sellers "Loved By Jacob," and "Emily Rose Ribbons."

It was all a bit of a mad rush on the morning of the Christening with me going to the venue to set up, and then rushing back to get ready and to the church on time. But thankfully it all went pretty smoothly, plus our little one thankfully settled for a nap with Daddy whilst I was out and so was all refreshed for her big day!

I wasn't sure what she'd be like for the Baptism itself as she can be a bit clingy, but she was actually very good, and then proceeded to sleep for most of the reception afterwards. So all in all it was a lovely day, she was very spoilt, and it was nice to get together with family and friends that we don't always see often.

Below you can see some pics of all of the bits from the day.


Not long after the Christening then came our daughter's 1st birthday, which I have to say came around so very quickly! It may not have felt it during those early months, but looking back the time really did fly by! I found myself feeling a bit emotional and reflective as it drew closer though, thinking about to how far we'd all come in a year, how life had changed, and how much our little one had developed in that time. From the clingy little monkey that I couldn't put down anywhere for months, to the cheeky, headstrong, clued up little character that we have today.

I had to work part of her 1st birthday as I couldn't get the time off, so we didn't do much on the actual day. But my mum popped around in the morning with a present and a balloon for her, and it turned out that seeing the balloon would lead her taking her first steps that afternoon. Plus the "Kiddy Moon" ball pit that we'd bought her from us also turned up, which she very much enjoyed playing in! 

Then on the Sat after her birthday we took her to the Sea life center for the first time along with my parents, which she absolutely loved! She enjoyed looking at all of the "fshhhhh" which she said for the first time, and looking at all of the lights and colors. We all had a lovely time watching her enjoy herself too, but did get rather drenched on the way home in the rather dyer weather that had developed at the day went on. 

Below you can see some pics from the day, and our little one enjoying herself.
The celebrations then continued into the Sunday, when my sister came around and we did her cake and some more presents. Once again she was a very lucky girl and was thoroughly spoilt by our loved ones. 

Fast forward a month and I kicked off the festive season by taking our little one to see Santa for the first time along with my parents and my Nan. It was a very spur of the moment thing that we decided to do whilst visiting our local garden center, as there wasn't a long waiting list. But of all the places to take her to see Santa for the first time I'm so glad that we took her there as it was so well organized, everyone was lovely, and it was a very magical experience. 

It started off by us being greeted by one of Santa's helper's, who was so lovely with our little one and more than happy to spend time talking to her. From here we were taken to a real mock-up steam train which  had TV's for windows showing snowy scenes, making it seem like you were traveling on a train to see Santa. Then once you "arrived" you were taken by another of Santa's helpers to meet the man himself, who once again was more than happy to spend the time with us. We also weren't made to rush, and they were happy for us to take, and to pose for photos. 

A bit like the Christening I wasn't sure how our little one would be with Santa. But having been well used to present opening by this point with both her Christening and birthday having been so recently, she was very interested in the little present that she was given by the elf, and even sat on Santa's lap too. Plus come Christmas Day we opened the present to find that of all things it was a little cuddly bunny! Santa's Elf's must have know we were coming! 

Below you can see a few pics from the day.
A little later in the month we then took her to see the Christmas light show in town, which we ended up going to see a couple of times in the end as she loved it so much! Again it was a magical experience, and she loved all of the colours and music, and was even quite happy to toddle off away from us. She did however enjoy it so much that she threw a massive wobbly when it was time to go! 

Below you can see a couple of pics from the evening.
We also had a bit of a "Peter Rabbit" Christmas this year, as I managed to find more Christmas paraphernalia of the famous little rabbit than I ever have done before including: My Charbonnel Et Walker Advent calendar, which I fell in love with and struggled to get, but thoroughly enjoyed devouring. "Peter Rabbit" Christmas paper, which again was gorgeous, and a "Peter Rabbit" Snow Globe and ornament. Both of which will be treasured and bought out each Christmas for us and our little one to enjoy for years to come.

Below you can see all of my "Peter Rabbit" Christmas finds!
Then just before Christmas we had our annual Christmas family meal. Whereas last year our little one was only six weeks old and in the baby sling, this year she was eating the food, toddling around, and trying to attack and take the decorations off of the Christmas tree.

Below you can see me putting the decorations back on the tree that our little one had been attacking, and her in her Christmas outfit. Plus her examining our Christmas tree in her Christmas pj's too. 
Then the big day itself finally arrived, for which our little one was up bright and early for! So much so that she ended up conking out around mid morning before she even got around to opening any presents! 

She did eventually wake in time to open the wooden pram from us though, before we then headed off to my parents for lunch.

She took her pram with her and looked so grown up pushing it around at my parents, even though she hadn't quite got the hang of steering and would get quite frustrated when she crashed into things! She also enjoyed eating Christmas dinner, opening more presents, and joking around at the dinner table with my Dad.

So all in all we had a lovely and special Christmas, which is what I wanted both our little one and us, as last Christmas went in such a blur with her being only six weeks old that we couldn't enjoy it as much. So this year was lovely, and even though not her first Christmas, it was her first proper Christmas. But it's true what they say the magic of Christmas is definitely there more when you have children. 

Below you can see Flo posing by the Christmas tree on Christmas Eve, and our little one giving "Flo Flo" as she call her, her presents on Christmas morning. 

New Year was then a bit of a novelty for me because I actually had my first proper night out since our little one's been born, and went into town to watch a rock tribute act with my best friend and her family, which were fab! Our little one behaved herself for Daddy too, which was also good! 

We had road tested it a few times earlier in Dec just to see how things went and she was good then too, so hopefully it means that I can now start having the odd Mummy's night out now and again!

It took me longer than most to be able to leave our little one of her of a evening though, as even though she's growing up fast and is nowhere near a clingy as she was, she is still very much a baby at bed time. She still feeds from me at night, and still co-sleeps with me too, which is something that I never thought that I'd do. I do get criticised for it, but at the end of the day it's not forever, it works for us, and I know how willful our child has been from the word go, that the cot is just not an option at the moment. But all the time that it works for all of us we'll carry on as we are. 

The main difference now though is that she's trusting Daddy a lot more, so if I get her to sleep and then give her to Daddy for the evening she'll generally stay asleep on him, or if she does wake up now she will rock back to sleep for him, which she'd never do before. Then to be on the safe side I'll also express some milk if I'm going out too, just in case he can't settle her back easily.

I have to say apart from wanting to get my illustration back on track, I do feel that I'm getting a better balance back between spending time with our little one, working, and gradually getting a little more time to get a bit of me back. Plus our cheeky monkey is at such a lovely age at the moment.

Then finally we had Valentine's last week. Which generally we don't make a big thing about, especially when it comes to presents. But since we don't get as much time together as a couple these days, we though that we'd make a bit of an effort this year. 

I was very spoilt with my hubby buying me a gorgeous "Lady and the Tramp" Pandora charm that I'd been eyeing up, as well as some "Hotel Chocolat" mint hot chocolate pouches for my "Velvetiser," and a "Hotel Chocolat" heart lolly. Then I bought him a sandwich toaster so that he doesn't have to keep using the toasty bags, and our usual M&S meal deal, which this year consisted of: Cheese and leek souflee's for starters, a pulled beef parcel with rosemary potato's and veggies for main's, and "Nut's About You" cheesecakes for dessert, with heart chocolates and of course Prossecco.

What also made it even more lovely was that we were actually able to chill out and eat our meal as a couple, which pretty much never happens these days! As our little one had settled to sleep in her pram for the evening, after having been worn out at Nanna's while I was at work, and had then fallen asleep on the way home.  

Below you can see the lovely bits that my hubby got me, and our Valentine's meal.  

So that pretty much rounds up all of the big events that have happened around here over the past four months or so! I hope that you're all having a good week so far, and thank you for dropping by as always! I'm currently aiming to have my illustration back up and running, and my cards on sale again for the beginning of March. Hopefully it will actually happen this time, so please pop by again soon! x    

Tuesday, 11 February 2020

Not the Best Start To the New Year!

Hello everyone, I hope that you’re well! Sorry that I've been rather distant for some time again lately! Once again I was hoping to have had my illustration back up and running by now, but due to demands of having a small child, a part-time job, and life just generally flying by, I haven’t really had the opportunity of late! Plus we also had our little ones Christening and 1st Birthday to organise towards the end of last year, which then led us into the Christmas celebrations.

On top of that we haven’t had the best start to 2020, as I spent most of Jan quite ill with a horrible cough and chest infection which all stemmed from a Christmas cold, but ended up getting so bad that I literally had no energy to even pick up our little one, was wheezing, and couldn’t walk anywhere without having a massive coughing fit. It got very wearing, especially when I ended up setting off issues that I’ve had with my sciatic nerve for years. However thankfully it has now finally all passed! I’m just hoping that I can stay healthy for a bit now; as I think that I’ve gone about two weeks without a cough or cold since the end of Oct. Most of which I think is down to our little one still feeding and taking a lot of my immunity, as I’ve definitely been more susceptible to coughs especially since being pregnant with her, but on the plus side though she’s been absolutely the fine.

Unfortunately the same cannot be said for our little Florrie bunny though, as just over three weeks ago she stopped eating and drinking one evening. Now this does happen occasionally as I’ve mentioned in the past, and it does usually co-inside with a moult cycle (which she was heavily doing at the time.) We’ve never been sure why and neither are the vets, but we have definitely noticed a pattern there though. Normally at this point I give her tummy rubs etc to help kick-start her eating again, but this time when I got her out I could feel a big hard plum like lump behind her right front leg, which had literally appeared from nowhere! I had thought when I put her out for her run a few days earlier that I had perhaps felt something different, but on investigation I couldn’t feel anything so didn’t really think much of it at the time. Obviously this time though I freaked out, not only because of the lump and not knowing what it was or where it had come from, but also because I didn’t know if she wasn’t eating because of one of her moult “off days” or because of the lump. My instinct said that it was probably because of the moult and at that point the priority was to get her eating again, rather than stressing her and making her worse by taking her to the vets.

Thankfully this was the right decision and after a very worrying night I managed to get her to start drinking again after 12 hours, and eating a few bits of fresh food after 16. Then by the end of the next day she was fully back to herself, and eating, drinking, pooping and peeing as normal. I did however find another smaller and less smooth bump on her just above the last one and more towards the top of her leg/towards the side of her neck on this day. So again I panicked, and as she was now eating and drinking the emphasis was now on finding out what these lumps may be. I was worried sick and took her for an emergency appointment at the vets the day after. Obviously I was goggling away in the meantime to see what it could be, but in my heart of hearts I knew that it probably wasn’t going to be great news.

The vet confirmed that they did indeed feel odd, that they weren’t that uniform, and that the rate that they had come up was not good. He also said that on the positive that they felt like they weren’t in deep tissue, but he thought that he could feel another tiny lump behind her front leg on the other side too. However he couldn’t definitively say what they may be one way or another without doing a Fine Needle Aspiration, which involved taking three samples of the cells to be sent off for testing.

Florrie was so very good for this and barely flinched as they did it, but after having discussions with the vet as to the potential outcomes I understandably came away from the appointment pretty upset. We decided that if it was bad news that we wouldn’t go down the route of surgery as not only would the antithetic risks be high, and the removal of three lumps be too much for her. But at least one of the lumps was also around her lymph node area, meaning the chances are that would be that it would already be in her system, or that the lumps would re-occur. So instead we decided that if it was bad all the time that she was happy and eating we would go down the route of palliative care, and then pain management when it got to that point. Then again if it was good news then we would still leave the lumps alone all the time that she was happy and they weren’t appearing to bother her.

After an agonizing weeks wait, (during which time Florrie was back to her happy hyper self) I got a call with the results. Basically they came back showing fatty cell division, which in itself isn’t necessarily a bad thing as fatty lumps she can live with, but it doesn’t mean that the lumps aren’t covering an underlying problem. There is also a possibility that they could be sarcomas, which as much as I don’t want them to be I would say that from my research since would be more likely. Then the third theory of the vet is that it could be A-typical Myxomatosis, (which is a rare strain of Myxomatosis that vaccinated bunnies can get.) Where they present with lumps from the disease, but it isn’t life threatening, and the lumps recede in time. Which although would be the better of the two latter possibilities right now, I am thinking is less likely.

Ultimately though we wouldn’t know for sure unless they biopsied and fully removed all of the lumps, which as I explained before with all things weighed up, isn’t a route that we would want to risk putting her through, and the vet is also in agreement with too. Plus the idea of losing her under anaesthetic, in a stressful environment that she doesn’t know, and without us, isn’t how I would want her to go if the worst was to happen. So for now the course of action is just to monitor her and the lumps, see how she goes. The vet is also very interested in her case as it’s out of the ordinary so is going to keep monitoring her too, and will re-check her soon when her jabs are due.

It’s now been three and a half weeks since I found the lumps and took Flo to the vets and touch-wood so far she’s been completely herself, eating, drinking, and pooing fine, and even though it’s hard to tell when I’m checking them so often there doesn’t seem to be any change in the lumps, or anymore. She also doesn’t appear to be any pain or discomfort, which I know is classically something that bunnies hide, but I like to think that I know her well enough that I know when she’s not right. But like I say as it is she’s fine in herself, and  if I didn’t know that the lumps were there I wouldn’t know that there was potentially anything wrong. All I can do is hope that we stay on this track for as long as possible, hope and pray that it’s nothing bad, and cherish every moment that we have with her.

It’s all happened so out of the blue and so fast that it feels quite surreal, but I’d be devastated to lose her so young. She’s not even quite three and a half yet, and is such a lovely soul with so much life in her. I was also hoping that our one year old would be able to grow-up with her too, as she already loves her, feeds her, and says hello to “Flo,Flo, so she’s definitely notice if she was gone too. But we’re not going to give up on her, and will continue to give her the best life that we can.

Below you can see our happy little Flo and I in a pic that I caught of us on the off-chance last week, and as you can see she's still happy to give kisses! I don't usually post pics of myself, but these moments of use together seem even more precious to capture now.

Sorry that this hasn’t been a happier post, but as you’ve all followed Flo’s journey with us from the beginning I wanted to keep you updated. I hope that you have all had a better start to the New Year than us though, and as always thank you for popping by! I am planning on popping by with a few throwback posts of photos from Christmas and before over the next few weeks, and am also working on getting my illustration back up and running as we speak! X