Sunday 4 April 2010
If my memory serves me right, when our son Jack was small he was given a cardboard Easter egg, probably full of little chocolate eggs. There are some little artificial yellow hens and chicks dating from around the same period, not to mention chicken-shaped egg cups. Although well past their best before date, this motley collection of bits and bobs have decorated the table on Easter morning ever since.
Both Jack and Katie have long since left home. However, we continued the tradition this morning, with our soft boiled eggs, each hand-decorated with silly pencil drawings, sitting in the hen egg cups on a table covered by a blue table cloth with a bright yellow tulip in a vase (very Ikea!) and the toy chicks and cardboard egg taking in pride of place in the middle. What a couple of softies we have become!
I have to confess, I came over all nostalgic - it brought back memories of Easters past. For some reason, we often seemed to be re-decorating this time of the year, eating simnel cake in the front room as a refuge from the chaos everywhere else in the house, or visiting our dear friends Henry and Maggie in Cornwall, where we would gather flowers from the garden, orchard and hedgerows to decorate Katie's Easter bonnet.
Our house is in dire need of redecorating again, but it's not a top priority this year. We no longer make the trip to Cornwall since Henry and Maggie died within six weeks of each other in 2002, but the memories of those happy times are still as vivid as ever. Although Steve has been diagnosed with an incurable cancer, our day-to-day lives are pretty normal at the moment, so we count ourselves lucky compared to other friends and neighbours who are no longer with us, some of whom died a much younger age, and celebrate others who have been through similar traumatic illnesses, but are thankfully still alive to tell the tale.
Our thoughts go out in particular to Felix, who is making a slow but sure recovery in hospital as I write, and to Sam and Janine, who has found herself writing progress reports to concerned family and friends, not unlike this blog. It's tough, but somehow we get through these times, with a little help from our family and friends.
Wallow in nostalgia over. Inspired by last week's walk in the Peak District, we set out again today, this time following the river south to Folly Bridge and Christchurch Meadow, with a short detour to the college boat houses (never mind Oxford, better luck in the Boat Race, next year) then on to the Botanic Gardens, which are in the process of being transformed, before winding our way home through the back turnings, feet aching more than last weekend!
Katie will be home tomorrow night for a few days, extending the Easter break for a bit longer. Enjoy the rest of the bank holiday, wherever you are and whatever you are doing. Promise to try to be a bit more forward looking next time.....