2 years old

My Choune is 2 years old! 2 YEARS OLD!! I actually can’t believe it.

We celebrated in style! For her birthday treat Thea was taken to the Cotswold Farm Park with her aunties, great Aunty, Gagai and me and Chuck.

We bottle fed sheep (Thea attempted a sip from the bottle but was quickly diverted), held a chick and were “gentle, gentle” with the rabbits. This is Thea talk for “stroked”.

Her wonderful great aunt – my mother’s sister – had a Peppa Pig cake made for her and had knitted her an incredible Peppa teddy and a Peppa jumper. Thea was enchanted! She loved her day out. Her favourite thing was driving toy tractors around the circuit, closely followed by jumping on the “bouncy bouncy” inflatable jumping pillow thing! Chuck jumped on it with her and promptly caused her to face-butt the pillow! She’s pretty good about accidental injury so the sobbing subsided pretty quickly…

After the Cotswold Farm Park we drove towards Taunton to join my Aunty Mary & Uncle Jim at the cottage on the hill just outside Taunton in Somerset. Surely the UK’s most idyllic B&B! We had to make a pit stop to watch France crash out the the World Cup – well I say watch and what I mean is I played with Thea while Charles winced through 90 minutes of mediocre football on a medium sized screen in the corner of a West Country pub.

West Country Living
My aunt and uncles place actually looks like something out of the pages of Country Living (that’s the less twee one right?!) – it’s all gorgeous views, beautiful vegetable gardens, hand blown glasses and art on the walls. I can’t get enough of it. Boggle on the scrubbed pine kitchen table. Scrambled eggs from the hens cooked on the baby blue Aga. Ok, I’ve made it sound twee – it’s not, it’s wonderful!!

Staying with them is awesome not only because they are such incredible hosts but also because it’s close (ish) to North Devon (aka my favourite place on earth!)

For Thea’s second birthday treat – we thought at two she’s probably better off with experiences than stuff – we drove her down to Croyde Bay. We were the second on the beach – another family we’re squeezing themselves into wetsuits when we arrived.

It’s been three years since I was last in my size 8 (yep! Really!!) wet suit so I approached it with dread.

Fortunately rubber is a stretchy substance and I got myself wedged in after a fashion (and some interesting wriggling about with plastic bags on my feet). Man it felt good!! After having Thea I was in size 20 knickers and here I was wedged into a size 8 rubber suit – whoop whoop!

I LOVE the smell of wetsuits. To me that is the smell of freedom, fun and fantastic-ness. Actually wearing one is like reinventing myself or just becoming myself again. Probably sounds a but ridiculous but I really think smell is probably the most powerful memory-inducers in all the world.

As much as this weekend was “for Thea” it was also very much for me. One more time to be the old A-B!

I can’t even surf anymore. The stomach muscles aren’t what they used to be! But even body boarding makes me feel better. I just love the cold water and sunshine of the North Devon Coast. Look, I’m getting all sentimental!!

It was wonderful. And seeing little T in her mini wetsuit loving the beach was the best thing ever!

Happy birthday Thea. You are wonderful xxx


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