Visit from Grannie Rosalie

Grannie Rosalie holding both twins, on the sofa with Gareth and Jane

On Thursday my Mum came up to Anstruther (kindly driven by my brother and family) for an overnight stay and to spend some time with her new grandsons.

It was really lovely to have Mum/Grannie Rosalie here over a couple of days. I found Mum’s support, advice and reassurance absolutely wonderful and exactly what I needed.


I was having a tough day on Thursday. I’d overdone it; we’d had lots of visitors that day and that was the first day since being diagnosed with shingles that I hadn’t gone for a sleep during the day. I certainly learned my lesson by the time the evening had come around.

What’s more exhausting than having shingles? Having twingles! That’s having twins and shingles at the same time.

In the end Mum and Jane sent me to bed, but before then Mum encouraged and coached us through what was quite a tough evening.

Up until that point evenings and nights had been perfect: wake, change, feed, wind, settle, sleep, repeat.

Thursday evening was more like those six activities were printed on a couple of dice and shaken at random every few minutes!

Your trial period of perfect, sleeping babies has expired, please renew your subscription to continue.

Hey! Welcome to the real world of parenting!

Tuition from the world’s best midwife

It was reassuring to be reminded that we’d only been parents for ten days by that point, and that we were still getting to know Reuben and Joshua, and they are still getting to know and trust us.

And Mum was an absolute star, simply reassuring us that we were doing the right thing: are they hungry? windy? too hot? too cold? is their nappy dirty/wet? do they just need some reassurance and a wee cuddle?

Mum gave us some great tuition in how to tell if your baby is still windy after feeding (a blue-ish look around their mouth, and pulling their legs up to their chests) and techniques to help bring up the wind. It was just what we needed, and like all good tutors allowed us to try it out for ourselves rather than taking over. Of course, having twins we could both do it at the same time! Perfect.

“Always go with your gut instincts,” said Mum. “Nobody knows a baby better than their mummy and daddy. No health visitor or midwife.”

“Yeah, but that said in this case, a midwife-trained mother of three trumps me just now!” I joked.

Over the last couple of days I’ve found that invaluable advice. As well as the advice to go for a sleep during the day!

This wasn’t on the birth plan!

I’m going to be honest here, this isn’t exactly how I’d anticipated our twins’ birthday. This morning we woke to:

1. A moose loose aboot the hoose!

Two chests of drawers - one has a mouse underneath!

A live mouse behind — and now underneath — our bedroom furniture, and two cats keenly sitting on guard.

But, of course, when we needed them to catch it … they ran off in search of a bowl of Whiskas! “Thanks humans, it’s your watch now!”

2. Nae water!

Bathroom sink - with no water supply!

… and no water supply. Thanks Scottish Water! That’s <irony>exactly what we need!</irony>

I rang Scottish Water’s emergency hotline — which is a recording, telling you to phone another number if you really need to report a problem with your water supply. The recorded voice told us that KY9 and KY10 (Anstruther, Pittenweem, Elie and Leven) have been taken out in the current water outage (reported at 07:20 this morning).

Imagine if the emergency services were like that!

Operator: Hello, which service do you require?

Caller: Fire Brigade please.

Operator: Please hold one moment while I put you through …

Recorded Voice: Thank you for calling the Fire and Rescue Service, your call is important to us. If you are calling about a fire at one of the following 150 locations throughout the British Isles then please hold, otherwise you will need to call 0800 999 9999 to request assistance.

Happy Birthday

Still, I have already sung happy birthday to Jane’s bump. Join in, if you like:

Happy Birthday to you (plural),
Happy Birthday to you (plural),
Happy Birthday dear currently-unnamed and unborn children,
We’ll see you very soon!

UPDATE: 08:46

Good: Water is back on, with just enough pressure to have a shower.
Bad: Twitter is now down.

Mum’s here!

This is my Mum on

Mum’s visiting us in Anstruther right now, hence the slightly quieter than usual blog. I’m being more sociable than simply sitting in front of my PC all evening … he writes on his PC, with his Mum hovering at his left shoulder!

This evening we took a walk down by the coast at Cellardyke which was lovely. Watching and listening to the waves, counting the flashes from two ‘nearby’ lighthouses and watching a couple of folks throwing stuff out of a boat.

By which I mean fishing lines or something, not like furniture!

My local station

The Trainline - Your local station is Scotland

I got a promotional email from The Trainline today. Just how small do they think Scotland is?

Notice the highlighted text in the top-right (rounded) corner:

your local station is Scotland

Great! Well I’m glad that puts an end to the discussion I was having the other night about whether Cupar or Leuchars railway station is closest to Anstruther. The definitive answer, from the railway ticket company is: Scotland!

Kenny and Chris

Regular readers of this blog may remember that in September 2006 I conducted the wedding of our good friends Kenny and Chris. Well yesterday they came to visit, for about 24 hours.

We took a walk down to the harbour in Anstruther, which is usually such a peaceful place to take visitors. Not yesterday, there were two petrol-fuelled generators powering something on a very busy small boat, with four or five folks climbing up and down the harbour wall ladders dressed in wetsuits looking very industrious.

I had the wee camera (Fujifilm FinePix A920) with me so captured the atmosphere on video, with a short impromptu interview with Jane and Kenny; Chris was obviously agreeing.

We had great fun. There was much fine food, great company and lots of laughter.