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Cayla Birthday

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Poem to Margaret

Child of light
skipping down the eggshell path
of your butterfly years
yellow tendrils
skying wild behind you
swept back by your delight
a flower about to open
about to gladden the world
petal by milky petal
gather me a daisy chain
made from your joy
to wear in my winter
when the glow of now
pales to the far scent
of fragile frost
Margaret of the marigold ways
running across deep October fields
drowning me in the pollen
of your madcap years
making pain seem solace
all child and sudden wisdom
amazing me.

By Christy Brown (“My Left Foot” fame: He had cerebral palsy and the only part of his body he had control over was his left foot, which he used to write with!)

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Zachary 6 Months

It has been a wonderful blessing having you in our lives Zac! We love you more and more each day 🙂

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Update from Ange


Some of my recent favourites!

Message from Ange

Apologies for the group email but I just wanted to send a sign of life, let you know that all is well in Aberdeen and send through some photos of our two little people, both happy and healthy and adjusting well to life in Aberdeen. Hard to believe we’ve already been here for 2.5 months!

Leola is her usual self, learning amazing new words and ways to express herself every day and constantly making me smile. Some of her latest expressions: “Don’t worry Mummy. I know you didn’t mean to do that…” (when I accidentally got her hand stuck between high chair and table) or, said with a serious face as she sits down on her new little stool: “Mummy, I need to teach you something. This is how you do a wee …” followed by interesting facial expressions. The latest one this morning: “Mummy, I need to have a conversation with you.” Seriously, a conversation…?! She’s a more considerate and caring big sister to Zac every day. It’s amazing how much she’s already trying to help him and teach him.

Zachary is also coming on in leaps and bounds. Whereas three weeks ago he still seemed to be just a little (big) baby, today he’s a sturdy big boy, eating solids (pureed fruit), sitting up unassisted (until he slowly slumps sideways), and rolling over, tummy to back and vice versa. He also makes the cutest little sounds and loves nothing more than watching Leola, trying to catch her eye and working hard to interact with her and smile. Leola is a wizz on her iPad and Zac is already showing lots of interest in the iPad, trying to grab it and touch things on the screen when she’s watching a video or playing a game. He’s an amazingly content baby, loves to cuddle, and usually smiles with the odd piercing scream when his teeth are bothering him.

Last week, we took the train down to Edinburgh to apply for Zac’s Dutch passport, which we need for our trip to Canada coming up in a few weeks’ time. Ideally this should have been done a few weeks earlier but hopefully we still made it in time and with a bit of luck his passport will arrive 2 to 3 days before we fly.

For the rest, all is well. Tim left to go back to Ghana two weeks ago, which was a bit of a shock to the system as with both Tim and Sue gone it truly is just me, the kids and the dog. We have a “nanny” for 3 x 3/4 days a week while I’m at work and now also have a cleaner for 4 hours on Tuesdays and Thursdays, but with work being hectic, Gandalf needing walks rain or shine, and the kids not quite understanding that I’ve only got one pair of hands, it’s still quite a bit of a juggling act until we figure out a routine and build up a better local support network.

I’m forever grateful to Caroline for introducing me to the beauty of Sainsbury’s online as 90% of our groceries now get delivered here rather than me having to pack the kids in the car and shop with two little people in tow (it doesn’t work… I keep forgetting what I set out to get.)

Anyway, time to run and get a few things done before I collapse into bed. Hope this finds everyone well and happy. We miss Cape Town and are sad we haven’t yet had a chance to go down to England to visit everyone down there, but we’ll get around to it one day!

Lots of love … and, before I forget, our address and phone details:

The Wighams
26 Polmuir Road
Aberdeen
AB11 7SY
United Kingdom

Tel: +44 1224 592 7676

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Some recent pics of Ange, Leola and Zac in Aberdeen where we are slowly but surely getting settled in…

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On Sunday 15 July we headed out of Aberdeen for the first time, and climbed Scolty Hill in Banchory. It was really enjoyable and we burned enough calories to justify a large Sunday Roast at the Bielldside Inn afterwards.

Leola is still asking why the Snow Princess was not in her Tower on top of the hill 🙂

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Life begins at 40!

I have turned 40 today! It feels strange. On the one hand I feel 30 and on the other I feel 50 🙂 Talk about messed up!

One thing is for sure – I feel incredibly blessed. There are enough reference points immediately available, to remind me that being alive with all limbs attached to my body is a celebration in itself. Then I can add the fact that I am still married to the same woman and we have a daughter and a son – privilege and miracle/s respectively.

Professionally, I have found my calling and love what I do and who I work with. My work is not always easy or fun but it is immensely rewarding and most of the time I forget that I am earning a living while helping to build high performance teams where the pace is fast but good natured and the circumstances are challenging but full of camaraderie…

We have recently moved from South Africa to Scotland, Cape Town to Aberdeen to progress our careers in the Energy Sector and it feels appropriate that we’ve arrived here to take the next step as I turn 40!

I’m looking forward to reconnecting with UK based friends while Ange is a little closer to home (Europe and N America).

I’ve also just discovered crossfit and have joined the Aberdeen Box. It is the closest thing to the Lympstone Gym experience that I have found in 20 years! Mid life crisis? 100% correct 🙂

I aim to blog more in my 40s so chat soon…

Tim

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Leaving Cape Town for a while…

Dear Friends

Our time in SA is almost up. Our house is empty bar a few pieces of camping equipment and a borrowed bed… needless to say Leola’s just can’t wait to get to Abrrrrrdeeen to be reunited with her babas and toys and discover the snails in “my new garden”.

We’re leaving on Saturday May 12th and are excited to start this new adventure while also very sad to be leaving SA, Granny, our friends, and our cozy home.

Before we go, we’d love the chance to say goodbye and would like to invite you to Peddlars on the Bend for a few drinks. Peddlars was the after-party venue for our wedding so it seemed just the right place to start yet another adventure and say goodbye to SA for a few years …

• When? Friday May 11, 17h00 – 20h00
• Where? Peddlars on the Bend (http://www.facebook.com/Peddlars)
• What? Snacks and beverages outside on the terrace (Cash bar. We’ll provide the food though )

Leola and Zac will both be part of the fun, so for those of you with little ones, please feel free to bring them!

Hope to see you all there!

Love,

Tim, Ange, Leola & Zac

PS. Remember to dress warm as we will be outside…

Peddlars on the Bend

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Here are some photos of our new arrival, Zachary, born a week ago on Friday February 10th (as you may already know via facebook).

Zac arrived two weeks before due date but already weighed 3.9kg and was 52cm “tall”. He came out looking very similar to Leola minus her chubby cheeks. Ange did an awesome job and is now recovering at home.

Leola’s been very loving and is mostly very excited that Zac finally decided to get out of Mummy’s tummy. She’s less thrilled with his constant presence on Mummy’s lap though and is very keen to make sure she also gets her special Mummy time!

You can watch the ordeal on video.

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Message from the Cape Town Wighams

Dear friends & family:

You will have realised that so far the mail has not delivered a Wigham Christmas card … don’t hold your breath, it won’t be coming in January either! We got as far as writing the first ten or so and I even managed to get some stamps a few days ago, but then decided it would be too late to send. So here’s an email instead – a great excuse to also give you a quick update on our little family.

2011 was a year of many ups and downs. Leola has gone from being a happy 7-month old a year ago to a very decisive, talkative, 19-month old today. She started life being an amazing sleeper, but no longer so. For the past 10 months or so, she tends to wake up anywhere between once to 3 x a night and has also given up on the idea of regular day naps. On a good day, she’ll go down for a 2-hour nap, but on most days, it’s more like a 45-minute catnap.  The temper tantrums normally associalted with the terrible twos also started at least half a year early and there have been a few times now where  we’ve had to resort to giving her 2-minute time outs in her room. The desperate cries of a prisoner hanging off her safety gate bars are both super-cute and heart-wrenching at the same time … and the very sincere “sorry mummy” after 120 long seconds have passed, are just too special.

Leola’s vocabulary is coming along very well, which is GREAT when she’s frustrated and can tell you what she wants … and equally not so great because she does exactly that – tell us precisely what she wants without taking no for an answer. She’s made me extra aware of what I say (and how), particularly when talking to Gandalf, as she repeats everything verbatim: “No, Gandalf”, “Out, Gandalf”, “Calm down, Gandalf”… the list goes on. She keeps amazing us by giving a running commentary on her own life in complete sentences. Yesterday, when she found the garden hose refilling the water fountain (it was a hot day), she told us “Lola is taking a shower”. For the rest, most phrases start with “Lola wants … “ or “Lola needs more … presents/nuts/ice/etc”.  She also knows her shapes, including the “funny” ones, like trapezium, hexagon, and pentagon.  Her little brain is like a sponge and we just hope and pray we’ll be able to keep up J.

The passing away of Tim’s Dad in July was an enormous blow for all of us and made us realise more than ever that life is fragile and we should never take our health for granted or miss out on an opportunity to spend time with family. We all travelled up to Zimbabwe which was both an emotionally difficult and very healing time reliving memories and saying goodbye.  Tim and I had found out only a few weeks earlier that we were expecting again. Sadly, the email with our happy news missed Tim’s Dad by a day as it was sent the day he became too ill to go into work.

We had some more sad news with the health of one of Tim’s older cousins declining and – only a few days ago – the very sad news that my Beppe (Granny) passed away at the age of 91. My grandparents were married for 68 years and were a huge part of our lives, from the very early days when we all lived on the same farm property to regular stay-overs and after-school visits when we were in primary school and they lived 5KM away “in town”. As we grew older,  there were more visits, joint camping trips to Germany, hikes, and endless games of Rummikub… Always full of love (and wit), any visit to my grandparents was a treat! Luckily, I’d managed to see my grandparents at least once a year for the last couple of years and even had a chance to visit them with Leola in April, for which I’m very thankful.

The pregnancy is meanwhile progressing well with less than 8 weeks left before the big day. It’s been strange as in some ways it’s gone way faster than with Leola; on the other hand, it has seemed that much longer and heavier. Either way, we’re all looking forward to meeting our new little addition and Leola’s equally keen to meet her little brother – she’s convinced that he’ll come out ready to play!

On the work front, our exciting news is that we are getting ready to leave behind life in South Africa (the past 9 years for me, longer for Tim) in exchange for cold, dark Aberdeen, Scotland where the number of annual sunshine hours is one tenth of the amount we’re used to getting. The move is planned for April/May to give us a chance to get baby’s EU passport sorted so he can move without requirements for visas, etc. Before you think we’re going mad, it’s been a well-considered move with lots of thought going into it both from our side and from Exceed, the Oil & Gas consultancy with whom we’ve both been working since 2007. We’ve commited to a 3-year period with the intention of reconsidering at that stage. We’re both excited about the opportunities to help Exceed grow and – for me especially – be closer to the “hub” after a few years of operating remotely. It does mean saying goodbye to Cape Leadership Centre, and we’re still deciding whether to sell or to keep it dormant for the next few years. A tough call when so much of our energy and passion has gone into building CLC.

Another sad part about the move is having to say goodbye to Granny (Tim’s Mum) who has not just been a wonderful grandmother to Leola and my support when Tim is away, and who has also been Leola’s “Granny-Nanny” for the last year, helping out 2 – 2.5 days a week allowing me to get on top of work. Much of Leola’s development is thanks to Granny’s tireless efforts and games and we’re very sad she won’t be a part of our daily lives once we move to Scotland.

Anyway, here we are, nearing the end of 2011, enjoying the visit of Paul, Bee, and kids who are here from Hong Kong for two weeks, and looking forward to an exciting 2012. We hope this finds you well and healthy and pray that your 2012 is filled with blessings.

Love from Cape Town,

Tim, Angela, & Leola