Archive for the ‘Family & Parenting’ Category

Funerals

Wednesday, January 4th, 2017 | Family & Parenting, Life, Thoughts

I have been meaning to write about funerals for a while. Looking back, I think there has been quite a lot of emotional resistance, so I will probably keep this post brief.

I was only six when both my grandfathers passed away, and not much older when my uncle died. Therefore, when my grandma passed away in August, it was the first funeral I had been to as an adult and the first one where I really knew what was going on.

In a way, I was actually curious to see how I would cope with the whole affair. For years I had known that eventually, someone would die, and had no idea how it would affect me. It turns out that I coped just fine. There was no emotional breakdown, nor much in the way of tears. Nor was it a surprise, though: when she was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, I knew we were on the clock.

Mostly, I felt bitter at the world for my own selfish reasons. Venla, who arrived two months later, would have been her first great-grandchild. I felt I had failed her in some way.

It has been a while since I have been truly nervous before giving a speech. Even my wedding was fine. But delivering the eulogy was a tough one. I always joked at my public speaking club “humour improves any speech: but I have not had a chance to try it out in a eulogy yet”. Well, now I have had that chance, and I can confirm it is a good idea. If anything, humour is even more important at occasions that are bound to include an element of sadness.

The truth is, I already had a few ideas for what I was going to say, should I be called upon to give a eulogy. Because that is what happens when you have an anxious mind that never switches off: you think about all the horrible things that could happen to everyone you love, and what you would do if it happened.

That all sounds very gloomy, and that is not the message I want to convey. Actually, funerals are fun. They are enjoyable, in a macabre way. Not because it is a celebration of life, which it is, but because it is a time when an entirely family comes together.

Over the past year, I have witnessed match and dispatch of the hatch-match-dispatch triangle. These events are important. They bring families together, using social rules and customs that other events have not been able to achieve. You get to see people you do not normally see, and bond over an emotional event, forming stronger ties between those that remain.

Funerals are always going to be bittersweet by nature. But they provide more than closure. More than a celebration of someone’s life. They are part of the social glue that help hold families together.

A birthday shout-out

Wednesday, December 21st, 2016 | Family & Parenting

I would like to take this opportunity to wish my mum a very happy birthday. She is 60 today.

We currently have four generations of Worfolk women on the go, running from Venla at 3 months old, to my gran, who turns 90 next year. We have it lined up quite well: I turned 30 earlier this year and, assuming I survive that long, will be turning 60 just after Venla turns 30.

Tropical World

Saturday, December 10th, 2016 | Family & Parenting

tropical-world

Last week we had a family trip to Tropical World in Leeds. It was a pretty poor experience.

We started off trying to buy lunch at the Roundhay Fox. They said no. Apparently they do not serve bar food on a Saturday lunch time. This turned out to be a piece of luck though. We headed up the road to the Deer Park, who were willing to sell us some food. They have really upped their game: my pork belly and scallops was a massive winner.

Tropical World was somewhat disappointing too. They are currently renovating, which means that some of the exhibits are closed. This includes the best ones: the waterfall, the terrapins, the snakes. They are still charging full price for this reduced experience.

They are giving you a free hot drink in the cafe, but that only lasts until 3:30pm, and we finished at 3:40pm. Boo.

At least we did get to put some coins in Ollie the Octopus. Elina laughed at me when I did the entire Ollie speech before we got there. And again when she heard it in person. He also now has a cousin called Rodriguez, in the South America section, which we are pretty sure is racist because nobosy was called Rodriguez back when the Mayan civilisation was going strong.

Meeting Mummi

Friday, December 9th, 2016 | Family & Parenting

worfolk-leinio-family

At the end of November, Venla met her other grandmother for the first time.

Unfortunately for everyone involved, this week was the week that Venla decided to start poohing on everybody. I do not think that dented Riitta’s enjoyment of the week too much though.

The other white meat

Tuesday, November 22nd, 2016 | Family & Parenting

tasty-baby

Tasty, tasty baby.

All the Venla photos you could want

Thursday, November 10th, 2016 | Family & Parenting, Photos

venla-1

Venla in the hospital.

venla-2

Venla ready to go home for the first time.

venla-3

A sleepy Venla and a very tired daddy.

venla-4

Venla’s first trip out in her pram.

venla-5

Venla’s first nap on the balcony.

supergirl-venla

Supergirl Venla.

nap-time

Nap time.

Shepherd’s pie

Tuesday, November 8th, 2016 | Family & Parenting, Food, Photos

shepherds-pie

God bless parents.

Baby Worfolk has a name

Thursday, October 27th, 2016 | Family & Parenting

big-bear

Naming Elina Junior has been no easy task. We wanted to give her both a Finnish and an English name so that whichever country she decided to live in, she would have a name that sounded local. We also needed to make sure it was pronounceable across the language barrier. Finnish names used rolled Rs for example, which English people cannot usually do, whereas “C” is not really a letter in Finnish.

After much consideration we have settled upon:

Venla Rosasharn Worfolk

Only time will tell whether having an actual name replaces calling her “El Ju”.

Baby Worfolk

Tuesday, October 11th, 2016 | Family & Parenting

elina-jnr

It’s a girl!

Nappy cakes

Friday, October 7th, 2016 | Family & Parenting

nappy-cakes

Yeah, apparently they are a thing. It is a bunch of presents, predominantly nappies, arranged into a cake shape. I had never heard of it until Elina came home from her last day at work carrying one. Then, in a pleasant coincidence, we arrive at my parents to be handed another one from my auntie. More are welcome: you can’t have too many nappies!