So Papa has been home for the last fortnight and to put it simply…bliss. Here is a tiny snapshot of our life at the moment…
Market mornings - rapidly becoming a weekly ritual. The Brisbane markets on a Saturday is our haunt, as Papa fills up on Turkish bread covered in toppings and almond croissants; Teddy on strawberries and bananas; myself on the best coffee I've had in a while. We wander up and down the long, crowded rows of carts. Butchers and fishmongers shouting out specials and Teddy happily singing through a Teddy-sized apple. I search for the bread cart I like and stock up on our preferred brand of gluten-free/dairy-free bread. We rediscover the man with the massive jumbo eggs and buy 2 dozen. We weave through the people to look at the flowers…Teddy gets out of his stroller and toddles about merrily.
Walking - in the morning, after lunch or in the afternoon. If we are home together and it isn't raining, you'll find us wandering around our 'loop'…down the road, over the creek and around the fields. On our way we'll stop for a swing and a slide, for Teddy to pick up pebbles and wind his way through the grass…following any bird that happens to be hopping along the way.
Friends - we catch up for impromptu drinks at the neighbour's place. Teddy learns to bounce on the trampoline and holds his own playing soccer with the big kids (that is, he toddles after the swarm racing to the ball, quickly changing direction when they race past him…a little boy caught in the crowd!). He hovers at the food table, busily stuffing his cheeks with the corn chips and strawberries whilst I try to offer him apples and pears and steer him from any gluten-laden snacks!
Discovering new places - new parks, new playgrounds and new adventures. Sherwood Arboretum is an amazingly beautiful spot that I can't believe I hadn't known existed…what have I been doing this past year if not heading to every awesome park in the South East?!
DIY & Bunnings - Papa has the reno bug (it has only taken me 7 years to get him interested - now he is a DIY fiend!). He has been staining the new deck, putting in the lights here there and everywhere (as a sparky this is not DIY - if we can't have cool lights, who can?!) and painting the interior. I shortlisted a couple of 'big boy' room colours for Teddy's new bedroom that we are slowly turning into a toddler room for him over the next few months. Thinking a mint green with white trim…or a blue feature wall with off-white elsewhere…or perhaps neither…
I take advantage of Papa being home to relieve the nanny and do the pick-up from daycare by working longer days on campus and catching up on office happenings - I am so grateful for this opportunity as I hone my new, improved PhD plan; meet with my supervisor and grieve for the loss of a friend P's wife to cancer. This time to bury myself in work surrounded by those who are in pain for P along with me is comforting. We go to the funeral and the next day have many coffees as P returns to work. Although I had never met Mrs P, through P I feel as though I knew her - a magnificent woman loved by so many.
Papa leaves tomorrow afternoon for another 3 weeks and so these moments are treasured…he won't be back for more than a week until November. And then perhaps Christmas. Longer breaks are treasured and memories made. Tomorrow evening Teddy and I start our life anew as just the two of us…again. I struggle to feel sad, instead just happy and content with having Papa home for now.