Yesterday was Astrid’s first birthday. A nice way to wrap up the year. I feel as though this year I’ve tumbled and slid down a steep, dusty, rocky hill, but somehow managed to pick myself up, brush myself off and carry on. Sometimes it’s been incredibly hard, and I’ve had to go head-on through some horrible times, the worst being seeing Astrid after her operation and the following days. Speaking at mum’s funeral was a walk in the park compared with that.

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It’s been a strange year for the females in my family – with Astrid’s operation, Mum dying, and Plum being re-homed a month or so ago because of her chronic sneezing.

I made Astrid a special present for the year. It’s a rather large black Windsor and Newton book which I’ve filled with 238 5×7 photos of the past year (and a bit), cataloging everything from the very early pregnancy, birth, early days at home, through the hospital stay with Astrid, Astrid with Mum, Astrid’s fashion shoots, trips to the beach, first high chair sitting – well, nearly one for each day.

Also included are some of my milestones, like the first swap, the growth of my fabric stash, first bag comission, and some especially memorable baking moments. As well as photos to reflect the changing of the seasons around the house and in the garden. Looking back I do miss the late Summer.

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The spray mount fizzled out around picture 180, and with Kevin’s back out, I can’t just ask him to go and get some while I bake the cake. I’ll finish it today. The writing will be my project for evenings over the next few weeks.

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The cake is absolutely delicious – it’s a raspberry version of Donna Hay’s fruit crumble cake from Modern Classics 2.

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My two regrets for the day – which means I need to do something about them – are that my midwife still has the birth notes – and I’ve not yet written about our time in hospital.

Today we are having party number two for Dad, Hamish and Megs who couldn’t come yesterday. They’ll be here in an hour (ooh, now five minutes!) so I might just have to start thinking about getting ready.