The month was, unfortunately, dominated largely by Simon's broken wrist. After finding out it wasn't healing properly he had to have an operation to pin it, and has been absolutely unable to use his left hand for anything since. That means no driving and very minimal work. It also means that he has been home lots so we've been able to spend loads of time together which has been lovely. Hopefully he will be driving again soon and able to do a bit more as it's been such a long time he's been out of action.
The start of the month saw us come back from Centre Parcs totally exhausted after a great time away. I was straight back to work the next day, which meant the rest of the week was spent catching up with the insane amount of washing since Centre Parcs had no washing facilities. However, at the end of that week we met up with our friends at Belfast Children's Festival for a "Baby Rave" which Isabelle thoroughly enjoyed. She wasn't sure at first, but ended up running around gleefully under the big parachute, which certainly did some impressive things to her hair! The next day we made a rare trip to soft play with our friends which was just lovely.
The next weekend was Mother's Day, and Simon treated me to a lovely family picnic and a walk round a local lake, with a pitstop to feed the ducks. It was such a wonderful day even though it was so simple, it was just perfect. We love nothing more than getting outside and just spending time together so for us there is no better way to spend the day. Isabelle thoroughly enjoyed our picnic, and has since developed an insane love for tomato soup. We had another family Sunday out, and another picnic, the week afterwards when we visited the zoo. It was a beautiful day so the zoo was packed, and Isabelle had a wonderful time having a nosey round the animals - her favourites were the elephants and the donkeys. Our zoo is built on the side of a quite large hill, so walking up to the top always KILLS me, and this was no exception! I was so pleased we managed to get there before the crazy summer season starts, and it means we won't have to go again for the rest of the year. I'm not actually a big fan of zoos - I can't stand seeing the large animals cooped up when they should be running wild in Africa, it breaks my heart. But it's a lovely experience for Isabelle which is what matters. Isabelle thoroughly enjoyed her ice cream at the end of the day too!
We also had a pretty impressive park streak, managing to visit 5 different parks 6 times in 8 days. Isabelle just loves the park, and can amuse herself for well over an hour if she is allowed, so it a great way for us to spend the afternoon when it's dry. We did have to cut one visit short when it started hail stoning - the weather has been so unpredictable in the last week that it's crazy! Two of the parks we went to were amazing - one is in a large demesne with loads of space to run around after playing at the park, and the other is in a city but has wonderful facilities. I can see us spending lots of time at both parks over the summer, hopefully with our friends and my nephews.
We did lots at home, including getting out in to the garden to eat lunch which is one of Isabelle's favourite past times. As always, we did lots of activities including making Mother's Day cards for her grannies and great-grannies, playing with her light box, painting with ice, playing with homemade kinetic sand and playing with a small world farm.
I was lucky enough to finish work for Easter last week, however the pile of marking I have home with me is just unreal. I haven't started it yet as I keep telling myself I deserve a day or two of no work, but I have to stop procrastinating. It needs marked over Easter as afterwards....I am back to work full time. I am dreading it, but know that it will go quickly and not be as stressful as the previous terms.
Other bits we got up to included buying new tiles for the kitchen, going for afternoon tea with my mum and sister, going swimming, riding her bike and buying things for Isabelle's birthday.
April is going to be insanely busy with Easter and then Isabelle's birthday, and then our BRAND NEW KITCHEN is getting put in! Simon's parents are coming to stay for a week which overlaps with me going back full time, so at least Isabelle will have a nice transition into it as she'll have some company she doesn't normally have. I have also acquired some tyres and am planning a little make over of part of the garden for a great play area for Isabelle for the summer - Pinterest has been getting a battering from me lately in preparation!
1/4 of the year is gone already - isn't it flying?