Wednesday, 30 July 2014

Summer, Sun, and Sea

We've been blessed with a pretty great summer in Scotland this year, rather than the usual constant-drizzle-that's-a-bit-warmer-than-usual. Kids have been able to play in the garden, I've been able to potter about, and get loads of laundry dried outside. It's lovely.

Last week, my mum very kindly booked us a few days in a caravan in Ayrshire, on the Firth of Clyde. The site was a few miles outside of town, and close to Alloway, a very pretty village, and the birthplace of the poet Robert Burns. We could see fields, cows, and the sea from the caravan. Completely relaxing. I could sit outside, in the sunshine, with a book, and look up every now and then to watch the twins play, or just smile at the view.

There were trips to the beach, we found a beautiful spot called Croy Shore. As were driving one day, I saw a sign saying 'shore, 1 mile', so I took the turn off. A narrow road led down, past another caravan park, past houses. At one point I thought that we couldn't go any further, but we did. Down, and winding, the trees and plants hanging ever closer to the road on each side, until we reached the bottom, and saw the sand, just on the other side of some rocks, and the sea beyond. It was a beautiful spot. Clean sand, and clear water that was shallow for a long way out. We all paddled happily (the twins once they got used to it). I buried my toes under the sand, and watched the water rinse them clean. I pointed out prawns burrowing, and crabs scuttling to the twins. Gareth was a bit nervous when he saw that there were crabs scuttling around as he paddled. Molly preferred to stay near the edges looking for pretty shells, but Gareth dove right in with his daddy, jumping on his back and playing what they call 'Dragon Rider' I could hear him sometimes saying to my husband, 'come on, Dragon!' Molly kept exclaiming that things were lovely, and beautiful, and her favourite! Gareth told anyone who would listen that 'Me Gareth Parr, on my hodidays! Beach, swimming, I like it!'

We pottered, and paddled, and rested. Even when at the beach with the kids, even when moving, it was restful. Looking at nature, gazing over the sea, feeling the sand under your feet. Feeling the difference in the water, warm and cooler as you move. All this is good for body and soul.

Sunday, 20 July 2014


I had a job interview on Wednesday, and for once, I left feeling pretty good. I did well in the interview, but, apparently, not quite well enough, because I didn't get the job. It's a disappointment, and quite a big one, but we'll keep soldiering on. So, as much as to keep myself from wallowing, and letting the Black Dog snap at my heels as anything else, I'm going to list some of the many ways I and my family are blessed.

We have a house that's big enough for all of us, the boiler works, the roof doesn't leak, we have running water, and comfortable furniture. We have a table, and plenty of food to put on it.

The kids have plenty of toys to make a mess with, we have DVDs to watch, and books to read. We have plenty of clothes.

We have each other, we have trips to the park, and snuggles on the sofa, and songs to sing, and things to imagine. We have giggles, and tickles, and love, and silliness. We have walks by the river, with boats going by.

We have dinner and togetherness when the kids are in bed, we have turns taken making dinner, and seats on the sofa, and hands resting gently on legs. And kisses.

I have my garden, dirt to dig in, salad to harvest, flowers to smell, stroke, and cut. Plans to make, and seeds to sow.

We have each other, we have family and friends we love and are loved by.

And we have a God who gave us it all.