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If you’re happy and you know it

October 30, 2012

Hope has started mimicking actions and sounds and is absolutely delighted with herself! It started with waving, initially a hesitant hand to her Granby or her father or I, then a phase of waving to everyone. Now it’s clapping … she has her palms wide open and they make a lovely clappy sound and she grins with utter glee and looks so proud when we congratulate her. Now rather than waving hello when she meets someone new she looks all coy and then looks up and claps … it is lovely.

Clare has been teaching her to do a ‘washing my hands of you’ kind of movement … I call it the ‘out damn spot’ Lady Macbeth move … Clare does it and then Hope looks a bit perplexed and then joyfully joins in … she also enjoys playing ‘touch my nose’ … she hasn’t graduated to ears yet but she’ll get there soon.

Her current favourite game is ‘If you’re happy and you know it’ … we sing it in the car and she claps now if I bang the steering wheel (when we’re stopped at lights) and we sing it after she’s had her lunch, and well most of the time really … introducing all the actions which she enjoys and she always claps delightedly afterwards. Hope is a jolly little soul.

We had a very special afternoon on the beach at the weekend … the beach where the film Beaches was filmed … the beach house still stands there, it really is very pretty.

Infront of the Beaches beach house … my best friend and my daughter

Clare and I had enjoyed tubs of ice cream and a bottle of wine watching the movie the night before … very much more emotional watching a film about a mother dying and leaving her daughter with her best friend when you are sitting watching it with your daughter and best friend … we’d both ended up in tears which really confused Hope … but anyway, the next day we went to the beach – so much easier with the two of us to carry everything rather than on my own … we found a little spot and enjoyed an afternoon with Hope chortling to herself under the beach umbrella. I took her for a paddle in the sea which ended up being nearly an hour long, she was so happy, and then Clare took over and was promptly knocked over in the shallows by a very small wave which caught her off guard … I was taking advantage of being able to have a few moments to go for a proper swim and I was emerging Ursula Andress like from the waves (well in my mind I was) and I just saw a very small toe deep (if that) wave nudge Clare who fell in a dramatic fashion but kept Hope out of the water and undamaged as if she was a Ming vase. Clarey didn’t realise I’d seen the whole thing but I couldn’t stop laughing which gave the game away, my most glamorous friend who never puts a foot out of line was soaked and little Hope thought the whole thing was a huge hoot. Clare, rather shamefacedly, said, “If she’d been a drink I wouldn’t have spilled a drop” and then handed her back to me!

At this point I draw your attention to the Winnie the Pooh song which kind of summed up the situation … and also to the fact that the day ended with a glorious sunset and the three of us playing clapping games together on the beach … I have rarely been happier.

If you’re happy and you know it clap your hands … one of my favourite pictures of Hope and I

I dedicate this to Clare and Hope …


3 Cheers for Pooh!
(For who?)
For Pooh –
(Why what did he do?)
I thought you knew;
He saved his friend from a wetting!
3 Cheers for Bear!
(For where?)
For Bear –
He couldn’t swim,
But he rescued him!
(He rescued who?)
Oh, listen, do!
I am talking of Pooh –
(Of who?)
Of Pooh!
(I’m sorry I keep forgetting).
Well, Pooh was a Bear of Enormous Brain –
(Just say it again!)
Of enormous brain –
(Of enormous what?)
Well, he ate a lot,
And I don’t know if he could swim or not,
But he managed to float
On a sort of boat
(On a sort of what?)
Well, sort of pot –
So now let’s give him three hearty cheers
(So now let’s give him three hearty whiches!)
And hope he’ll be there for years and years,
And grow in health and wisdom and riches!
3 Cheers for Pooh!
(For who?)
For Pooh –
3 Cheers for Bear!
(For where?)
For Bear –
3 Cheers for the wonderful Winnie-the-Pooh!
(Just tell me, somebody – WHAT DID HE DO?)

She saved her friend from a wetting … Auntie Clare and her good friend Hope

Friendship is a truly wonderful thing … as is being a mother … I am really lucky … broke, very tired and looking saggy eyed and hairy legged but truly and utterly happy.. now then all together .. ‘if you’re happy and you know it clap your hands’.
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