Daily Archives: March 6, 2005

Florence Nightingale’s diary

Well, three lovely days in the company of my ailing sons and it looks like another trip to the nurse tomorrow.
Old red-eye is looking a little more normal, thank goodness, and he’ll be off back to school tomorrow. He’s getting the hang of washing his hands occasionally with soap now so I wonder how long that will last. I’m still having to remind myself not to use his towel to dry my hands, though… although it begs the question, when I’ve put the drops in his eyes, should I be using the general towel to dry my hands or the lurgy-towel?

However, despite his eyes being less red, he still looks as though he’s been in a fight – all his knuckles are raw and red and the skin broken. Allergy to soap, I wonder? I think the nurse will have to pronounce judgement on this one – is it just the cold (bearing in mind he’s been confined to barracks for three days) or eczema or an allergy? Or is it the dreaded lurgy?

Tiddles is back in bed again this morning as the headaches and nausea and dizziness keep coming back, so it looks like the nurse will have to sort him out tomorrow too. I can’t imagine what she’ll suggest, apart from letting it take its course. Luckily M has offered to have him tomorrow as I don’t think he’ll be going to school and I really can’t afford to take another day off. Tuesday? Well, that’s a whole two days away…

It’s actually been lovely having them at home, though – especially being confined to the house. They’ve played proper games and done a jigsaw which is quite unusual for them. We’ve read stories together, played computer games, and best of all, the sewing machine has been in action again. I’ve done a Crusader outfit for Tiddles to complement King Arthur – swords must be kept sheathed inside the house! – and the boys have had tremendous fun making themselves some pencil cases with their names on. And they’ve each bought themselves a soft-toy kit to make a penguin and a snail. My heart sank at the soft toy bit after bitter memories of childhood attempts at sewing fiddly pieces of fur together but no, if they want a go, then so be it (she says, biting her lip as she says it!)

Now before you tell me off for being pessimistic about the success of their toy-making, let me just recall a typical moment in the baking of the cakes:
Tiddles has weighed out the butter and now needs to cut it into chunks to put in the mixture. It is sitting on a piece of greaseproof paper on top of the scales. I suggest he puts it on the worktop to cut.. however the scales are in the way. So, naturally, he reaches over the scales to the back of the worktop to cut the butter there! I point out that this is not particularly convenient and suggest he moves the scales. This causes him immense concern – he can’t move the scales to the back of the worktop because the butter is there. He can’t move the butter because the scales are in the way… but he can’t move the scales because…. you see the problem. Eventually I manage to get through to him that it is possible to hold the butter in your hand while you move the scales. He lifts the butter on its paper, puts it on the scales, then amazingly proceeds to pick up the butter from the paper into his hands to hold it while he moves the scales. “No no no, leave it on the paper while you move the scales, then cut it on the worktop in front of the scales”. So he does this, tipping the butter off the paper straight onto the worktop to cut. Mind you, by this time the butter is melted, so it’s fairly simple to slide it off the worktop into the mix, thanking God for a clean worktop!

And while we’ve been busy being creative, I’ve also had the chance to do the main activity for unit two: the writing of a sermon. Ooooooooooh! It’s a strange strange feeling doing that – a combination of utter unworthiness and great honour, fear and excitement, enthusiasm and reluctance…. and now, of course, the dread of letting anyone see what I’ve written. My enthusiasm hit a bit of a stumbling block when my minister admitted he had forgotten we’d agreed he’d put my name forward at the Local Preachers’ Meeting next week – good job my friend M gave him a gentle nudge for me. I must admit I still don’t really understand his reluctance as I he says it isn’t that he doesn’t believe I’d not do the job satisfactorily and doesn’t really question my call. Weird. But seeing as God seems to be making things fall into place for me, and seeing as I have felt more at peace since I said yes than I have ever felt before, I think I might well be doing the right thing. I think.

Right, now where did I put the Benylin?