Excerpts from our previous family blog that tried to record some of the early days of our children, but succombed to our being too tired to write anything coherent.

February 2002

Isabel had her first birthday on the 14th, and we had a party for her at home which 12 of her little friends attended. Phew! She loves all her new presents, and we’re trying to get her to walk with her new push-a-longs. She’s standing for substantial amounts of time now, and taking the odd step unsupported. Her vocabulary now includes do(g) and birrrds as she’s quite into animals, but ka(t) is still her favourite

This is the first installment of news, so there’s a fair bit to catch up on. So Megan and Gavin got married in 2000 near Brecon, having got engaged six months earlier in Paris. Our daughter Isabel Rose was born the following year, on Valentine’s day. We’d tried to move out of our flat in Hampton Wick before Isabel was born, but that didn’t work out. Eventually we moved to our house in Teddington when Isabel was 4 months old.

Isabel started off looking very much like her dad (poor thing), but is now resembling her mum much more (she can still do the occassional impersonation of her dad though!). She started crawling in October, but didn’t win Gavin his bet that she’d be walking by Christmas she’s walking around holding on to furniture now, and taking a little longer to topple over each time she lets go. She’s quite tall (well over the 98th centile).

Isabel is starting to talk. Having mastered mumumum and adadadad before christmas, her first word was ka . That she said this while playing with Megan’s ceramic cat was enough for us to believe that she meant it the fact that it now gets used for anything she wants is irrelevant!

Having been a bit late on getting her first tooth, she now has three, so her affectionate gumming has become a little more dangerous recently.

August 2002

Another large gap in updates. Isabel is coming on in leaps and bounds. She now says about fifty words. Her favourite hobbies currently are singing, dancing, climbing and bed-time stories.

Gavin’s big news is that he moved jobs from NPL at last, and is now really enjoying his new job at Cancer Research UK (what was the Imperical Cancer Research Fund). Also, Megan successfully completed her course on art therapy. Over summer, we had a lovely holiday at Llangranog, in west Wales.

More big news: Isabel is due for a brother or sister in April 2003. Good job we’ve arranged for a loft extension we just hope it’s done in time. It’s a bit early to talk about Christmas, but this year we’ll be spending it in Budapest, where Diane, Alex and Alex are living for 18 months. So we’re guaranteed a white Christmas for once.

July 2003

Well, Rhiannon D’Arcy Kelly was born on 5th April 2003. She weighed in at 8lb 10oz. She’s now 11 weeks old, and thriving. Her older sister is very proud of her, and gives her lots of cuddles, which can be too much of a good thing. Isabel is doing really well, and can now talk fluently about anything she wants. We had great fun on her 2nd birthday, when we went to a local children’s farm, which was perfect as Isabel is obsessed with animals. When we went to Wales, she was delighted to be able to ride Ladybird (one of the Cui ponies), and her great-grandmother was very impressed with her trotting.

The loft extension was finished just after Rhiannon was born, and we’re currently painting it. But it’s now habitable, so officially we have a three-bed house. Gavin’s using it as an office at the moment, as he’s working from home two days a week. The next thing on the horizon is the double christening on 20th July.

We’ve found a direct lineage of piano teachers, tracing all the way back to Chopin.

So that makes Isabel the great-great-great-grand-pupil of Chopin.

In a similar way, Gavin is the 11th-great grand pupil of Isaac Newton! (Gavin ← Roger Penrose ← JA Todd ← HF Baker ← Arthur Cayley ← Peacock ← Hudson ← Jones ← Postlethwaite ← Whisson ← Taylor ← Smith ← Cotes ← Newton)