Sunday, October 11, 2009
My weekend began on Friday evening at 7pm. I had just put Little Planet to bed and had now settled down on the sofa with a novel (The Brief Wondrous Life Of Oscar Wao by Junot Díaz). I love the hour or two of silence that descends between putting my daughter to bed and my husband returning home from work.
A couple of hours later and M came home bearing assorted pizzas from Princi which we ate with salad in front of the TV. We watched our recording of steamy, brooding vampire drama True Blood. Apart from the football, I can't remember the last time we watched TV in real time. We record everything - TV 2.0.
My Saturday began at 6.30am. I was wide awake, lying in bed, my mind racing with work thoughts while my husband and daughter were still fast asleep. A little later, everyone was up and while M and Little Planet ate their breakfast, I headed into town to get my hair done at Aveda in Holborn, central London. I was very annoyed, actually I was mad, at the Tube driver for ruining my attempt to read my book in peace by making endless announcements. The wonderful head massage I received at the salon, though, soon calmed me down.
I ate a stodgy vegetarian brunch at Neal's Yard Salad Bar - not the best vegetarian food I've eaten, though the soya banana milk shake was delicious. I bought Indian and Colombian coffee beans from the Monmouth Coffee Company in Covent Garden. Then I watched Pixar's new movie Up in glorious 3D in the Covent Garden Odeon. I found the film very poignant and I loved it though I wondered whether it was really suitable for some children. One boy - perhaps 6 years old - in the audience said loudly, "It's very sad, isn't it?" Another boy of a similar age was whimpering, "I'm scared Daddy, when will it finish." I admit that I cried a fair bit, but then again I am a big softie.
After the movie, I popped into Borders bookshop on Charing Cross Road to buy Parents and Real Simple magazines. Queuing up to pay, I couldn't resist being tempted by a bright yellow Mr Happy umbrella for Little Planet (photo top). Then off to Muji on Tottenham Court Road to buy candles, soap refills and notebooks. I took a bus up Oxford Street to Selfridges where I bought a DKNY grey cardigan and a John Smedley black cardigan for myself for colder weather. Finally, I ended up in John Lewis where I bought Mini A Ture lilac trousers for Little Planet, a bath mat, a mattress protector, a grey lambswool throw for one of our couches, plus cheeses, fruit and snacks from the Food Hall. Though I work in central London (off Oxford Street, in fact), I rarely have time to pop out and shop on this scale aside from weekends and days off.
Laden down with bags, I caught a cab home and spent the rest of the afternoon with Little Planet, M and my mother-in-law who is staying at our house for a week and a half to look after Little Planet when M and I go away to New York this Wednesday - our first holiday in two years!
Dinner was pan-fried cod with a hazelnut and caper crust, accompanied by sauteed potatoes and a salad of spring onions and tomatoes from our garden. Did I mention in a previous post that M's home cooking is one of my "best things in life"? One of my "worst things in life" (post to come) is washing up afterwards!
Sunday began, as all weekend mornings begin in the Planethalder household, with a big family cuddle in our huge, super-kingsized bed. Our weekend morning ritual is this: Little Planet wakes up and shouts out from her bedroom. One of us brings her into our room and changes her nappy whilst one of us goes downstairs to warm her milk and make coffee. Then one of us feeds her her milk in our bedroom whilst the other snuggles back into the bed. After her milk the three of us end up snuggling in our bed with the CBeebies channel on. It's a lovely routine.
Later, after breakfast, my mother-in-law and I took Little Planet to get her (fourth) haircut then we took her to visit her auntie and uncle who live nearby. M stayed at home to chill out in peace (though he also cleaned and hoovered the house, good man!). Little Planet snacked on almond croissants with us, plus blueberries and strawberries. Then I took her home for lunch. She hates being strapped into her buggy so she screamed most of the way - I tried to distract her with leaves and keys, which worked for a while. Her frustration with being in the buggy makes going out with her quite difficult, but we persevere as we have to go out. It's all a phase, so won't last. But it does stress me out hearing her getting so mad. Oh well.
On a positive note, for the first time ever she properly strung two meaningful words together - her Dad was walking out of the bedroom and she waved and said, very clearly, "Bye bye Daddy!" Mind you, she was saying "Off we go!" a couple of months ago when she was 13 months. New words she's said this week include, "blueberry" and "finished" (when she shows us her empty plate).
She ate a good lunch of pasta and tomato sauce, and then she went down for her nap. In the afternoon, my mum and dad came to visit, so Little Planet was in her element with her two Grandmums and her Granddad all showering her with attention. I had to work though, for a few hours, upstairs as I have a big presentation in Paris tomorrow (fortunately the trip can be done in a day so I will be back tomorrow night). M also had to work for an hour.
And now it's the evening. M made Little Planet a stew of sweetcorn and tomatoes, which went down well. He'll be roasting a chicken for our dinner. Then we'll settle in to chat, read the weekend papers, do a little packing, and watch some TV.
Another weekend over, but I am not sad because in two days' time we will be off to New York (have I mentioned that to you?!)!!