What We’ve Been Up To 

July has been a fairly busy month for us. We had a mini heatwave, less severe than June’s heatwave hell but warm nonetheless.

I also had the task of finding a temporary childminder for the month of August as ours is away. This is literally the most daunting task ever- so much so that I’m currently writing a post about the ins and outs of finding childcare, because it’s a damn minefield.

I interviewed a nanny who was so lovely and would have happily looked after goblin with her own son of the same age at her house (which was fully equipped with playroom and garden) but our usual childminder raised a number of concerns about the nanny being uninsured and needing to have everyone who enters her house CRB checked and so the lack of legal paperwork made me very nervous so I decided not to go with her.

I ended up finding a great childminder through a friend who was able to have him for most of August, so all ended well. The search continues however to find someone closer to home to shorten my morning and afternoon commutes!

We had 3 trips to the beach (all with daddy!!) in July too  – to the south west coast. It was great to get out of the hot city for an afternoon and see Zac running around in the sand and delighting in jumping around in the water. Even though there is no attachment between his dad and I, it’s nice to be able to do things as a ‘family’. For Zac’s sake.

They have developed an amazing bond over the last couple of months. It hurts a bit to see because I’m scared that my little boy will be let down or disappointed one day. But they love each other. That matters, right now.

It’s going to be a fairly complicated thing to work out over the years, but at the moment things are good there so I’m rolling with it.

On one of our beach trips, we ventured into the depths of hell- otherwise known as Funland (makeshift amusement pak) at Tropicana on Weston-Super-Mare beach front. Zac loved all the lights and watching the rides- and I was excited to behold a ride called ‘Oxygen’ – an axis that swings you round and upside down.

Here is is in action:

As baby daddy was there to hold the baby, I decided that I wanted to go on this ride. I had always loved thrill seeking adrenaline rush rides. We grew up close to a massive theme park and went about once a week throughout every summer. NO rollercoaster was too high or too crazy or scary, I rode them all.

I hadn’t been on a ride like this in a few years so felt that familiar thrill when running up to the little man in the kiosk. The ride was empty so I didn’t know if it was even working that day – it was pretty windy. But sure enough, it was open so he took my coin and lead me over to the seats. After securing the shoulder belt, I started to feel a strange feeling of fear.

When the ride got going, I was waving excitedly at Zac who was looking confused at the sight of his mother in this strange, big, moving contraption. When I reached the top and the ride started to plunge me towards the ground, I nearly had a heart attack. All I could think about was those awful videos circulating recently of whole rows of seats in smaller rides than this snapping off mid-ride and sending the screaming people aboard plunging to their deaths. This sort of thing did happen. What was I thinking?

I was absolutely paralyzed with fear. I kept thinking that I was so stupid for getting on this damn ride, it’s a beach fairground for Christ sake, how safe could it be?? I am going to die in front of my son.

Every creak I heard in the metal frame made my heart stop. The ride went on forever, I kept my eyes shut and prayed for it to stop and bring me safely to the ground where I could get off and return to my child, and never set foot on a thing like that again.

It made me realise I am not the same person as I was before. I am a mum. Everything changed when I had him and I would never be that carefree, thrill seeking girl ever again. I now had a little precious person depending on me being there. And that was it.

The ride slowed and stopped. I was released and I got off and nearly fell, my legs were like jelly. I was shaking for a good 15 minutes afterwards  – probably adrenaline, but mostly through that fear of leaving him and the awful things I imagined while I was up there.

It was a big realisation.

Other than that, we had a lot of fun. Baby daddy played one of those idiot machines where you control a grasper thing and try and pick up teddies. After about £10 in coins being stuffed into the machine, and a lot of mutterings related to all the machines being a scam, he managed to pick up a pug dog teddy bear for Zac which he was thrilled with.

He went on his first merry go round and ran up and down the pier with boundless energy, before enjoying the ride on the little train back to the car.

In other news, I rented the Caboo dx Go sling from local sling library last month and loved it so much I bought one in plum (for £10 less than retail price, on Amazon yay!). I was able to put Zac on to my back on my own, and it’s light but strong and sturdy. Couldn’t recommend it highly enough! So much easier to sling him on to my back than wrestle the pushchair out of the car.

We also had a lovely morning with our friends at the teddy bear’s picnic at Avon Valley Railway, which included a ride on the steam train, a picnic and lots of fun in the sun!

We ended the month with Bristol’s finest urban art festival Upfest, which was right on our door step this year! We watched amazing artists from all over the world bring white walls to life with incredible murals. There was music and food too. If you’re ever in Bristol at the end of July- make sure you go!

August is often a quiet month with so many people on holiday, work is less manic but we have plenty to do so won’t be bored. Then, September will be upon us and it’s just a hop skip and a week till Halloween and THEN CHRISTMAS!!! Woohooo!


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