Tag Archives: Birthday

Twenty one years ago*

A woman named Ann was heavily pregnant and as she woke up, she realised her waters had broken. John, her husband, had to take Rachel to school and so they called an ambulance which arrived and took Ann across Swansea to Morriston Hospital. After taking Rachel to school, John followed Ann over to the hospital.

It should have been a nice, normal delivery. Except it wasn’t that simple. After an examination, the doctors believed the baby was breached and they were worried about the delivery. So they declared they would do a c-section. The theatre was booked, Ann was prepared and John was told he’d have to stay outside. Down in the theatre, everything was ready, except the surgeon who had been caught up elsewhere and was late. This baby however, was rather impatient, and couldn’t be bothered waiting around for the surgeon. Whilst the staff were waiting for him, the baby came out naturally! Ann was overjoyed at the sight of her newborn daughter. As she was being pushed on a trolley back down the corridor, with the baby in her arms, the surgeon was walking the other way and was surprised to find there was no need for him to do the c-section anymore!

John was then able to rejoin his wife, and meet his second child for the first time. Whilst Ann had been in the operating room, John had gone outside into the garden and found a four leaf clover. This clover was later pressed and kept inside his daughter’s baby book.

For a week or two following the birth, Ann and John could not decide on a name for their new child, so she was called ‘the baby’ for a while. Rachel loved the ‘Peter and Jane’ books and was insistent that she should be called Jane. Ann and John compromised with her, by keeping the first letter, and calling her Jennifer.

*In the style of Lanark

Ramblin’ for Ramblin’ Folkie’s Birthday

Sarah decided she wanted to climb a hill for her brithday. So today, those that were crazy enough to brave the weather, climbed a hill near Brecon. Afterwards we met those who had responsibility for young children / prefered a quieter day in Brecon, for a pub lunch in Brecon.

Overall it was a fab day. Many thanks to Sarah for organising it. When you’re practically getting blown off a mountain by gale force winds and constant rain, it was very easy to think ‘whose idea was this?!’ (When I did actually say this, I looked at Sarah, and she just grinned back at me!) But it was still fun. And the sense of achievement at the end of it all is amazing. Even if your legs do ache a bit…

That was the other thing as well, my knee. I hadn’t been hiking on it properly since I injured it last Feburary. Not necessarily because I felt I couldn’t the entire time, but because there wasn’t an opportunity to do so. But going back to a similiar place as where I did the orginal injury, I was understandibly apprehensive about it. I found it affected my confidence when going down steep sections. Not sure whether this is a good thing or a bad thing. It ensured I was more cautious, because I think the reason why I fell last time was because I got over confident on the steep bit. But then I often felt today as if I was being overly careful and nervous.

In terms of my knee hurting – it was fine on the walk, although I did make sure I wore my bandage for extra support. Tonight both of my legs are aching, as they do following a hike especially when I haven’t hiked for so long. But my knee is hurting *slightly* more than anything else. Shrug. I dunno, I think its alright.

Anyway, enough about my knee. Heres some photos from the days outing and theres more on my flickr account.

Pointing the way!! )

In the pub Benjamin asleep in the window of the pub!

No Longer a Teenager

For the past 19 hours I have no longer been a teenager. It feels quite good really. I always seem to be the youngest – most of my Swansea friends are 3 or 4 years older than me; I’m one of the youngest in my acedemic year; and I’m the youngest in my generation of family members. From a young age I knew I’d always be the youngest child because my mum couldn’t have any more children. Most of the time, amongst my Swansea friends I don’t notice the age difference, but occasionally they’ll be talking about houses, proper jobs and scary grown up stuff. And it’ll remind me. It was also weird when I was on placement, because I was working with teenagers and their parents, who would quite often turn to me, sigh and moan about their ‘typical teenager’ daughter/son. I’d just nod and agree, but could never admit to still being a teenager myself!

Its just weird though. Because most people seem to moan about being too old. I’m not moaning about being too young, but part of me thinks it would be nice to be a little bit older. One friend in my card hit the nail on the head with a comment, ‘Hope you don’t feel too young!’* Being 20 definately sounds a lot older than 19.

I (and others) have also noticed a difference in my excitedness levels – compared to this time last year I have definately been much calmer and less excited. I’m still happy, I’ve just grown up a bit. I *think* this is a good thing. The inner child in me is still alive and kicking and still makes an appearance reasonably frequently, but generally I am calmer. With everything that has happened in the past year, I don’t think its a surprise that I’ve grown up.

Many thanks to everyone who very kindly gave me cards and presents. To celebrate this afternoon I had a fabulous picnic in the park, which I think was enjoyed by everybody who was able to come. There are photos which may or may not follow.

* This was partly written because it continued from a previous comment between us.

“I’m Jen; every day is a ‘WOW day’!!!”

Were my exact words when a friend commented that today seemed to be a ‘WOW day’! I have definately had a WOW weekend. Has been very busy, but extremely exciting and great fun!

It started on Friday night, at midnight when it became my birthday! My friends had hidden all my presents around our house and I had a midnight present hunt!!! When I found them all (at least, i hope i found them all!), I opened them and there seems to be a distinct rainbow theme running through nearly all of my presents! Thank you for everybody who kindly gave me cards and presents! My dad has a reputation for buying me unique presents – this year it arrived in the post as a long, thin, oddly shaped parcel, which had everyone guessing what it could be. It turned out to be a big bubble maker – which makes HUGE bubbles!!!! The handmade card that came with it was the funniest bit – it read ‘What does ERG do when theres no wind, no strawberries?……she becomes excited BUBBLE girl!!!’

On Saturday morning – after very little sleep – we headed into town, as we had organised a Make Poverty History awareness making day at a big church in the centre of Swansea. (We were determined to do something, as we couldn’t go to Edinburgh for numerous reasons.) We had made a HUGE MPH banner out of wall paper and black pernament pens, that we put up outside the church. i had some plastic MPH tape which we wrapped round all the trees in the grounds of the church and we handed out postcards to send to Tony to passerby and people enjoying the coffee morning in the church. It all went very well, we even managed to organise a press release for a local paper – thank you Richard for taking those photos. As my fellow campaigners will be able to tell you – I was incredible excited and bouncing around all over the place! The only annoying thing was that stood right next to us, almost competing with us were a group of evangelical street ranters. Grrr, its difficult to know what to do in those situations.

In the evening on Saturday we had a BBQ on the beach, which was great fun. it was a bit cold and windy, which on the negative side meant that we ended up eating an awful lot of sand, but on the positive it meant that we could fly my rainbow kite!!!

On Sunday morning we had a brilliant service. We have recently set up a music group, which I sing and play a drum in. We’re still finding our feet a bit, but yesterday it worked really well, if i may say so myself. We sang before the service (supposedly as people were coming in, but everyone arrived too early!), we did two songs during the service and we did also sang during the communion. We received lots of positive feedback, so hopefully we can keep it up! After the service we also deocrated the church with MPH stuff that we had left over from Saturday.

Sunday afternoon we headed beach-ward again and spent a fun afternoon building sandcastles, paddling in the sea, eating icecreams and bodyboarding. I hadn’t been bodyboarding for a year or so and I had forgotten the excitment! I could feel the adrenaline pumping round my blood as a big wave crept up behind me! Unfortunately I do not own a wet suit, so it wasn’t too long before my legs went numb, which isn’t ideal when they have to be used lots to fight against the currents, so I came in and warmed up!

Then I collapsed.