We are back from a fabulous time with family and friends in the Eastern Cape. It was just so nice to spend time with loved ones.
I think Nicky enjoyed the change of scenery too. He got to meet his aunts, uncles and cousins. My sister came with her hubby and two kids. They loved our pool and were jumping in early in the morning. We also took them to the lion park here in Joburg, and in PE they went on a game drive and to see and ride elephants. I think they had a fab African experience.
It was so good to see my parents again. DH and I went out for our anniversary supper leaving Nicky with granny. He fell asleep on her chest! We went for a walk on the beach with Nicky in the stroller. It was a good reminder of how windy PE is.
We also got to see DH’s sister and their twin boys. We took them out for ice cream and also went to their church.
We had a lovely Christmas with my brother-in-law’s father and family. Nicky enjoyed the wrapping paper more than the presents. It is such a special thing to watch my bundle of joy marvel at little things and just enjoy simple things like that. I think he is a lesson for me in gratitude and joy. My real Christmas present!
On Boxing Day we went to watch cricket. My sister got to meet up with her friends. Even my mom came with and DH sat next to her and patiently explained the game while I sought a shady spot with Nicky. I don’t think my mom’s new interest in the game was done any favors when one of the six balls hit her hard on her knee!
After PE we went on to East London and stayed with DH’s other sister and her family. It was really nice to have lots of people around to hold Nicky. We got to go to movies (Life of Pi, which is excellent) while taking advantage of all the baby sitters. We also ate lots of food (DH’s mom makes the greatest cheesecakes, trifles and pineapple tarts). They also had a party for Nicky and we got spoiled with more gifts! The only bad thing was there was a tummy bug going around and we both caught it and passed it on to my friend who we also visited in Cathcart. But like she says, what are a few germs between friends?
Well, I’ve told you all about our holiday, but what I haven’t mentioned is the journey to get there and back.
Let it be known that driving with a baby is a BIG mistake we don’t plan on repeating. L at Three Conejitos wrote about how her Thanksgiving trip disrupted her schedule and her milk supply. I’m not so worried about schedules (we don’t have one) and my milk seems stable for now. But what really gets to me is a crying baby on a national road. Most of the time we could stop at one of those handy picnic stops along the way, but it wasn’t always possible. Furthermore even if we did stop and attempt to feed, he wasn’t always interested and the crying would resume.
We did our best to set up a best case scenario. We broke the journey up and had an overnight stop in Bloemfontein both ways and Cathcart on the way back. I pumped milk. DH pulled out all the entertainment stops using fluffy toys as puppets. We sang songs. But sometimes, it just wasn’t enough.
On the way back on our second day stretch between Queenstown and Aliwal North, the wheels came off.
Pull over to picnic spot. Nicky does his whole “latch and detach” thing, which means he’s not really hungry, just wants to play. He looked at the trees, cooed and smiled. Like, yay, they stopped for me! Back in the car seat we go.
A while later. Waaaa!
Pull over. Rinse and repeat.
By the third time this is happening we are realizing that to the normal cry response (hunger, discomfort, nappy, wind etc) we must add I Dropped My Toy (these days he remembers about the toy he is busy with and complains loudly if it is gone) or just plain I Am Sick of This Car Seat Already and Are We There Yet?
So yes. We were nearly there anyway. And what else could we do? DH scooped Nicky into his arms and held him close for the rest of that part. And after we had had lunch at the Wimpy at Aliwal North, he fell soundly asleep for the rest of that journey.
I’m glad to be home again. I loved seeing the family, but I hated the driving to get there.
Short distances are better. Here is my precious Nicky giggling away in this video my SIL took: http://youtu.be/