Monday, 2 April 2018

Madhouse diaries : Life goes on


Looking at this photo that I snapped the other day, it's impossible to tell if it's a sunrise or sunset, an end or a new beginning, and to be honest, it doesn't matter - you still get the same moody skies and pretty colours. I decided that it rather nicely summed up the mood at The Madhouse recently. We're still coming to terms with Madhouse Daddy's death and trying to work out if life (and plans and fun and laughter) needs to be starting up again and carrying on as usual, or if we need to do things differently, or whether we should all be sitting around moping and feeling sorry for ourselves. Well, to be honest, it's a bit of a mixture of all of that.



Most of the time, we're sticking to traditions with a twist. Every Saturday morning, we all used to bundle in the car and head off to Burger King for a kicking-off-the-weekend catch-up and chill-out. Now, I let the kids take it in turns to pick their fast-food restaurant of choice and we all head off on the bus. In the evenings, the kids used to eat early (around 6.30/7pm) and the adults would eat later (around 8.30pm) when Madhouse Daddy had got home from work and chilled out. Now, I'm eating at the same time as the kids, which is actually a nice new tradition as we all get to sit round the dinner table together. It also means the evenings are much longer so, when the weather is nice, it gives us time to take the dogs out for a walk by the canal to watch the sunset.


With two dogs and three kids, this can often lead to squabbles over who gets to hold the leads, so I decided to get Pierre's bike out of the garage too. He was happy to burn off some energy before bedtime.


Remember all my moody landscape photos from Norway on my recent work trip to Stavanger? Well, the perfectly still canal along this route gives equally impressive reflections.


The smiles are still looking a bit stilted, but we'll get there eventually.


Easter Sunday was a bit of a tricky one - it was always Madhouse Daddy who hid the eggs all over the patio and in the house, so I asked the kids what they wanted to do : give it a miss this year or should I take over on Easter Bunny duties? We went for the "same but different" option again - instead of hiding big eggs, I just dotted some mini eggs and Kinder Surprise eggs all over the place.


It all seemed a bit half-hearted but Pierre got well into the spirit of things - as did the dogs !


The cheeky grin says it all. I've always been a glass-half-full kinda girl so we're definitely looking at new beginnings.


Country Kids

33 comments:

  1. I have been thinking of you....It sounds like you are finding new ways to do things and a new normal. It's nice to see the kids smiling. I can't imagine how you are all feeling xx

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    1. Still taking one day at a time - can't believe it's been three weeks already

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  2. Merci de prendre le temps de donner des nouvelles. Nous pensons souvent à toi et aux enfants. Vous êtes merveilleux. Gros câlins virtuels du Canada. 😘

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    1. Gros bisous ... quand on a a des enfants, on doit survivre (et vivre), on n'a pas le choix :)

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  3. I was thinking of you yesterday, how you cope with the Easter celebrations. Glad to read you're having new traditions, and that you are eating together with children. Life goes on, whether we want it or not, whether we feel guilty about enjoying life and laughing, but your husband is always there, in your hearts and thoughts. Big hugs to you all.

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    1. We had two different friends invite us over for Easter Sunday lunch so it actually ended up being quite a busy day. You just have to keep on functioning when you have kids, which is probably a good thing. Thanks for your very kind and wise words - you totally get where we're at right now. Hugs xxx

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  4. Lovely photos - you are all heading in the right direction - just go at your own pace xxx

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  5. I'm so sorry for your loss, Cheryl. I had no idea and was really shocked when I read your post today. Sending big hugs to you all xx

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    1. Thanks Michelle - I did a Silent Sunday post about it but people are still finding out now, even in real life friends.

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  6. You are such a good mum, Cheryl. <3

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    1. Don't know about that, just muddling through the best way we can. I totally understand the war slogan "keep on keeping on" now - I feel like we're doing the same old steps and waiting to fall into a new rhythm xx

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  7. Been thinking of you and yours Cheryl - sounds like you are finding the right levels for you all, no-one has a right way to deal with a loss like this, just do what feels right for you xx

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    1. Thank you. The hardest thing is having different members of the family dealing with it in different ways and trying to plan life around keeping everyone happy xx

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  8. Sending you all big hugs. I have been thinking about you a lot. It looks like you are doing your best and wish there was something I could say or do xx

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  9. It's such a big thing to happen to you and your lovely family. My heart goes out to you x

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  10. I was so sorry to hear of your tragic loss and send my love. Taking each day as it comes is all you can do isn't it, don't put any pressure on yourselves. Eating together at dinnertime sounds like a nice new tradition xx #CountryKids

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    1. Thanks Mary, we're making up the new rules as we go along, it's working well enough for now xx

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  11. I am so sorry for you loss.

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  12. I'm so sorry for your loss. What an amazing job you are doing of keeping going for the kids and adapting your family traditions. #CountryKids

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    1. There are highs and lows but I don't have a choice - I have to make this work for the kids (and for me) so we just keep moving forward as best as we can xx

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  13. OMG, I had no idea. I am so sorry for your loss. Sending our love from the south coast xx

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  14. I've been wondering how you have all been coping and it sounds like incredibly well. I love the twist on old traditions especially all eating together and taking the dogs out in the evenings. It is going to take such a long time to adjust to life going forward but it sounds like you are making the first painful steps bravely and with a sense of purpose.

    Lovely to see you back at #CountryKids

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    1. Thanks Fiona - it is hard but you just do what you have to do, especially for the kids xx

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  15. I've read a few of your posts in the past but had no idea you were going through such a huge family bereavement. You are very strong and it sounds like doing all the right things and making the best of life with the children. My best friend died last March as a single Mum, leaving her 8 year old daughter in the care of her Grandparents, a devastating loss, like yours and huge adjustment for them all. Taking little steps is the only way forward, and grieving the loss when YOU can. So hard when you're helping the kids deal with their grief too. Sending you heaps of love and prayers, warrior woman. XX

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    1. How awful for your friend's daughter - we were just saying yesterday that there's always someone in the world in an even worse place so we should count our blessings and see the positives (not always easy admittedly). Thanks for your kind words xx

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  16. I am so sorry for your lost. I can feel the weight of your sadness at the start of the post. SO glad that you are trying to make things better for everyone. I will be thinking of you and your family.

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    1. Thank you - we're at that weird stage where it still feels wrong to laugh or have fun. But life has to go on for those of us who are still here. xx

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  17. I'm so sorry for your recent loss! It must be so difficult... It's lovely of course that you've got each other, and I'm sure you'll find your feet in this new situation. But it will probably take a long time. And that's okay, that's how grief is, in my experience. Wishing you and the kids all the best xx #CountryKids

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