July 28, 2008

Happy 17th Birthday Jemma

Seventeen years ago in the maternity ward at Frimley Park Hospital in Camberley Surrey my eldest daughter Jemma made her appearance. After a 15 hour labour (pretty average I suppose) The Doctor finally studied my x-rays and realised that It was highly unlikely that I would be able to have the 'natural' birth I had hoped for. All those National Childbirth Trust classes I had so diligently attended turned out to be not so useful after all. They only skimmed over the C-section option, focusing instead on how we 'must' avoid pain relief at all costs!! It was just assumed that everyone in the class would manage to have a straightforward natural birth. Jemma did arrive safely and was the sweetest child I had ever laid my eyes on. Little Jem, just a few hours old
As for recovering from my operation! Craig and I had been renovating our first home, a small semi detached house close to town. My labour had started quite abruptly after stripping wallpaper all day, with my waters breaking just as I was about to go to bed at the end of a long day. We moved into our half renovated house when Jemma was only 3 weeks old! Oh the faded but fun memories that go with that good old 'nesting instinct' :D
Now I have a beautiful young lady in her final year at high school who makes me so proud. Her special day today has been a simple 'family' event with Craig finishing work early and bringing home a 'Subway' lunch (a birthday treat request). Desert was her favourite New York style cheesecake, served with all 17 candles perched on top in a little sponge cake in the middle, they get ever so messy plonked in the cheesecake itself! We took a few photos and Amber has since compiled a little movie on facebook which she is going to put on her site this afternoon. Jem chose a new release DVD called 21, to watch this evening in the cool lounge. I never thought I would be so grateful for this chilly home of ours, it has been quite humid lately with temperatures hovering around the mid to upper 20's so the best places to be are indoors, under a tree or in the lake between the hours of 11am and 4pm.
A little family outing we enjoy at this time of year is a 20 minute drive to the pebble beach at
Harbourville where we make a fire and toast marshmallows on long sticks or forks. Saturday was another very hot day, so we headed for the bay of Fundi where we found an almost eerie atmosphere, the sun was so diffused by the mist that Amber was convinced it was the moon. Craig threw a few flat stones, skimming them across the water. The girls had fun taking photos and exploring, while I hunted for white pebbles to take home and put on our garden path. Mmmmm, is that one for me?
Hazel xx


  1. Happy Birthday Jemma :)
    Hazel, can you believe you are mum to a 17 yr old? And I remember her as a little girl. How time does fly :D
    Sounds like you all had a lovely day!
    Love the photo of the sun/moon :)
    Love to you all
    K xx

  2. Happy Birthday!!!
    Time really flies....hey sis. I bet you remember all that like yesterday.

  3. AnonymousJuly 30, 2008

    Hello Hazel,
    I was so sorry to miss you at my parents today, I really wanted to be there to introduce you and ask you in for tea!! Maybe another day.
    Thank you for the little felt friends, everyone thought they were adorable.
    Glad the birthday girl's day was a good one! :)

  4. Seriously late, but... Happy Birthday Jemma! Hope you had a lovely day. What a nice pic of you and baby Jem, awwww! "You must have been a beautiful baby....and Yes, 17 years on just look at you now! Mmmm Cheesecake Gill's favourite! Good idea using a sponge on top to make all those candles behave!
    We could both snaffle one of those marshmallows too.

    Much love as always
    T & G


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