We had a wonderful holiday at Volmoed in Hermanus. It's a most beautiful Christian retreat center in the Hemel-en-Aarde (Heaven and Earth) valley that we've been to for church camps and also for holidays from time to time, so it was so lovely to go back there. We also had an afternoon at the beach which was just lovely for James and Charis...
Drama when I was coming back from a work meeting in Fish Hoek on Monday - Danielle was playing with the children on the field and making nests out of grass etc. They went across to another patch to collect some flowers when she noticed a massive snake sliding through the grass (probably about 8 meters away from them). She grabbed the children and took there things across to the other side of the road, but Charis then wriggled out of her arms twice to go and look (she thought it was a joke) and she had to grab her again. She called one of the men working on the farm and so him and a few others rushed to their aid, took one look at the snake, ran and grabbed a pole and dispatched of it. Turned out it was a Puff Adder so was actually very dangerous - I arrived 5 or 10 minutes later and was very relieved to find them all safe.
Had our ups and downs emotionally but was fantastic to have the space for that for all of us, to have good quality time together as a family, and especially for Danielle and I to have time out together in the evenings - we've had more chatting time than we have in ages, and of course we love that!
We came back leisurely on Friday, had breakfast together on the way, and then took James off to his appointment with the paediatric neurologist. She was absolutely brilliant - she asked detailed questions of us, was great with James, and picked up that there is indeed something a bit funny with his gait and his reflexes in his legs. She would like to seem him again when he has one of his periodic pain episodes in his legs to compare that to the base line examination she did with us, and the working hypothesis at the moment is that it could be partially a side-effect of one of the chemo drugs but may have some other complications. They're going to do tests on his nerves in his legs in a few weeks time to see if they can measure an underlying issue - if there is it probably isn't serious (especially in comparison with everything else he's gone through!) but physio etc may be the way to help it.
On Friday night we went out for yet another celebratory meal - we just feel so grateful to God for all he's done for us as a family and for each other, so we're not underdoing the celebration!