I'm going to stop apologising for my tardiness at blogging as I will just have to apologise every time otherwise! This is me and this is how often I seem to be able to get here with work, Jack and life filling most of the space in my life most of the time! Lol. It is what it is.
Well, it's school holidays here again, another two weeks off and my main aim is to give this house an enema! A little bit of a hoarder but was trying to work through that and was doing ok until heaps of Jen's stuff came my way when she passed away. So, now I have to start again and try to reclaim my front (spare - store?) room again! But I have to work through all Jen's stuff and think carefully, sensibly, sensitively about what to keep and what has to go. Jack had way too much stuff too (toys, clothes, STUFF!!! Lol) between his two homes, so now I aim to find a way to condense all the STUFF into , well, not so much STUFF!
It has been a very busy term here. Jack has started Cubs (Scouts for kids between about 8 and 11 years old), he has been doing basketball coaching twice most weeks and has had youth group every second Friday night! I have had precious little social life! lol. The lot of any parent methinks!
Jack also had his 9th birthday last week on the 13th of September. We went down to Jenni's Mum's last Sunday and had a family gathering there for him then went to my parents the next night (his actual birthday) and then yesterday (Sunday, 19th) had a party at an indoor play centre (wet, miserable weather here lately) with his school mates, a couple of old school mates from when he was with Jen and some young cousins from both sides of the family. About 14 kids in all, aged between 4 and 9. And Dad was exhausted afterwards! lol. My parents put on afternoon tea at their place for Jenni's family and a family with Jack's old school friends, who all travelled about an hour and a half to get here for the party so it was a busy but lovely day. And most importantly, Jack had a ball and was often seen to be organising the whole crowd of kids at the play centre! (Must be something he got from Jen!)
It has been a tough week though, as Jack has had a tummy bug (gastro) since Sunday night (the night before his birthday. Started getting crook (sick) down at Sandra's and only finally came good on Saturday, the day before his party. The worst part was he was supposed to go on his first school camp from the Wednesday to the Friday so he had to miss that! He was shattered (and I was looking forward to a couple of free nights! lol), but there was nothing we could have done. His best friend at school, Steph, was also sick but with the flu, so she also couldn't go, so her parents and I are planning to take them to Phillip Island (where the camp was - about an hour away) next week and do some of the activities they were going to do on camp. Things like see some koalas and the penguins. I also have contacts at other school camps where I can take them to do things like the flying fox, etc. It's not the same but the best we can do and then look forward to the grade 4 camp next year!
We are still muddling through the year of firsts without Jenni. This was Jack's first birthday without her and I wondered how he would go but he was fine. I think it may have been in the mind of everyone else but as I said, Jack had a great time. We still chat about Jen from time to time and he misses her but he is managing really well. His mid year school report was fantastic, he is now ahead of most other students in his grade and Jen's best friend commented after his party yesterday that she noticed his social skills are so much better now. Last year he was just playing alongside the kids whereas this year he was a part of it all. He just needed time with others and getting to school every day. I'm so proud of him and so would Jen be.
A question for you all. And I don't know if I can deliver if you say yes, but I will try. Jen's Mum gave me the DVD of Jenni's funeral. It was a simple service, no photos and only about 24 minutes long. Jenni wanted it that way so Sandra honoured her wishes. My question is: would you like me to post it here? I don't know if it's possible or even if I have the ability to do so. If you want to see it, I'm sure we can work out a way of posting it either here or in some other place so you all could view it.
I'm still trying to learn how to download pictures from my new phone/camera (the old one was so easy!) and when I do I will post some new ones of Jack and his birthday.
There always seems to be so much to tell, even though I start off wondering what I will write. One last thing. Jenni's two sisters are both due to give birth in the next month so some exciting days ahead. It reminds us that there are always new beginnings. We will always remember and honour Jenni but we will also move forward into new beginnings.
Take care All,
Monday, 20 September 2010
Posted by Jen Ballantyne at 1:44 pm