2019 was another busy year for us. Isn’t every year busy when you have kids? This is our 2019…
January started with a double parkrun on New Year’s Day for the first time. It’s a bit of a tradition in the parkrun community, but it’s the first time we’ve done it. It won’t be the last. A few days later, my car went into the garage for repairs, following a small accident my son had had in November. I expected the car to be gone a few days. It was gone a month and ‘highlights’ of the situation included it setting on fire in the garage. Also in January, my daughter performed in her amateur panto. The dances were more challenging and the girls were older than in her usual panto, and she really enjoyed it. But the panto itself of course wasn’t up to the standard of a professional panto. Later on in the month, I started training for my first marathon.
February was a fairly quiet month, as it was alway is. My daughter was ill with a nasty virus. She is ill every single February without fail. I know never to book a holiday for February half term! We had our old fireplace removed, ready to redo our lounge later in the spring, and my son did an outdoor art project which turned out to be an unexpectedly pleasant experience.
In March, my eldest did his A Level mocks. When we got his results, they blew us away. My marathon training really picked up the pace – with me running 168 miles over the course of a month (about double a standard month). With my husband and brother-in-law, I ran Warwick half marathon in the pouring rain, as part of my marathon training. At the end of the month, my younger son went to Germany for the return leg of his German exchange. He had a great time and came home absolutely buzzing.
In April, I went to Alton Towers with my husband, daughter and her friends as a belated birthday treat. My husband, the younger kids and I had a lovely, brief trip to Padstow and the weather was amazing. We left my eldest at home to revise. Towards the end of the month, I picked up a nasty cold which would DEFINITELY BE GONE BEFORE THE MARATHON.
We worked on sorting our lounge out throughout the spring and, at the start of May, we had our amazing new settee delivered. Our lounge is unrecognisable from what it was before. At the start of the month, with just days until the marathon, I still had the cold. I had a permanently aching head, face and even teeth! On 5th May, my brother-in-law and I ran Newport marathon – our first marathon. It was an amazing experience and I finished in exactly the time I had hoped for. It won’t be my last marathon. A week later, I ran Tewkesbury half marathon and felt on top of the world. My eldest left school and started his A Levels around the middle of the month. He took them all in his stride. At the end of the month, my younger son did an athletics competition with his club and jumped more than six metres for the first time.
In June, we had our annual family trip to Wychwood Festival, although my boys decided not to go this year. I went to see the Spice Girls in Coventry with my old friend from work and her daughters. My son became county long jump champion and, a week later, came second in the region, with an incredible jump of 6 metres 51cm. He was very excited to make the team to compete at nationals. My husband and I ran Cheltenham Challenge half marathon. My eldest finished his A Levels, then turned 18 and had his prom on the same day! What an amazing day for him. We ended up with several teenagers in tents in our garden after prom. At the end of the month, my son competed in an athletics competition for his club. On his very first jump, he broke a bone in his pelvis. We had to call an ambulance and his dreams of competing at nationals were shattered. On the plus side, he did still win the competition!
At the start of June, my eldest broke down in my car. To cut a very long story short, it all went back to the fire in the engine at the start of the year and my car was away at the garage for a whole month again. The kids finished school in July and we all went on holiday to Nice. It is a beautiful place and we had a lovely time, but we all struggled slightly with the heat.
In August, my eldest got his A Level results and they were amazing! They were better than we could ever have imagined or hoped. This is a boy who basically spent 13.8 years of his school career coasting, and just literally knuckled down for the last couple of months of year 13. Also in August, the younger kids, my husband and I went away to Padstow for three nights, staying in an Airbnb for the first time and doing Eden Project parkrun. At the end of the month, my eldest started his apprenticeship, but he wanted a day trip with the family first. Just before the kids went back to school, we went to Weymouth to visit our old friends – and of course did the local parkrun.
September was back to school for year 9 and year 11. My son celebrated his 50th parkrun and my daughter celebrated her 100th. Auditions for panto were back and of course my daughter got in! My husband, brother-in-law and I ran Cheltenham half marathon as usual. For some reason, we all found it particularly difficult.
In October, I noticed that Wilfred, our beloved guinea pig, didn’t look well. He spent a day at the vet’s, but sadly he was dead within 36 hours. I was heartbroken, and also worried about how Cedric would cope without him. Two days, later, my husband and I ran Stroud half marathon. It went brilliantly and was in complete contrast to Cheltenham.
My husband and eldest started November with a weekend in Krakow in Poland, and a visit to Auschwitz. My younger son finally played his first rugby match since fracturing his pelvis – he had already been playing football for a month. Panto rehearsals started for my daughter and she did her Silver Jazz exam. At the end of the month, we picked up Henry, our beautiful new baby guinea pig.
My daughter performed in panto all the way through December – a total of 15 days (including school days and two days in January). In total, I saw the show six times and loved it more each time. My daughter looked stunning on stage. My husband and I went to see The Wonder Stuff, we had Christmas Day at home and our traditional family Boxing Day trip to London.
So that was our 2019. How was yours? 2020 will bring us GCSEs and hopefully another marathon and more long jump records…