That being said, we've also had some truly lovely moments this week, including our first nativity plays! On Wednesday evening we went to Charlie's nativity, where he played a marching soldier, and on Thursday Joe had his show, and he played the part of a dancing sheep - both classic biblical roles!
The boys were great, and G and I both shed more than one tear as we watched. I think for Joe in particular, we wouldn't have expected him to be able to get up on stage a few months back, but actually he did it with gusto.
Friday night Uncle Steve came to babysit and we got a night out with friends, which was great - funny how much more we appreciate those nights these days!
On Saturday we had arranged a lunch meeting with the boys' foster carers. Last time we met up with them I think I was really seeking their approval, but actually this time round I was very clear that we were the parents, and I actually left the meeting feeling that I am in no rush to do it again! The boys weren't actually that fussed, they were pleased to see them but they didn't spend any time talking to them, and they weren't seeking cuddles and affection, and weren't in the slightest bit phased when it came to saying good bye. I had forgotten just how neurotic foster carer J is, and I actually found her fairly stressful this time. I think in truth we've just all moved on, I'm not convinced that the boys are going to need many more of these meetings.
We got the boys to write letters to Father Christmas on Saturday, which they each left in the fireplace in their bedrooms. We took these away when they were asleep and sprinkled the fireplaces with
On Sunday, we went Christmas tree farming with our neighbours. We headed off to a beautiful woods where we could choose our tree, and then we took the kids for a run around the woods, before heading back for lunch which we ate outside. It was lovely and really festive, and Joe stopped and said 'Daddy, this is the best Christmas ever.' I think he's going to be overwhelmed by the actual Christmas!
Tonight we showed the boys the Portable North Pole videos that Father Christmas had emailed to them in reply to their letters! They were transfixed and so excited. Even G cried at that reaction!!
Tuesday of this week was birth mother's deadline to write her appeal to the courts. She missed the deadline. We're waiting to find out what that means. No matter how much we know we have nothing to worry about, it's on my mind all the time and I'll feel much happier when it's all resolved.