We found out we were pregnant shortly after getting the keys to The New House (which is over a year now, so I should probably just start referring to it as The House). I was excited about the idea of exploring the woodland with a child; collecting conkers and identifying mushrooms and kicking leaves and discovering insects. I thought that once the child could walk he’d be fun to be in the woodland with.

Well, I underestimated babies! The piglet is now three months old and he has been fascinated by the woodland since he was just a tiny dot. It has been lovely seeing the canopy through his eyes. The view from the pram is really quite amazing.

The contrast of dark leaves against bright skies provides so many patterns for little eyes to puzzle at. Light shifts through the branches or the wind moves the leaves and the pattern changes. Looking up from the safety of the pram is so mesmerising that sometimes it sends you right to sleep.

Before we had the baby I knew very little about babies. I thought that they just lay there and cried until they were six months and could sit up. But the piglet changes every day. He does lots of things, lots of the time. Sometimes when we go for walks in the woodland I carry him in a sling. He tips his head back, looks up the length of the trees, and coos and aaaahs with big wide eyes. He must be able to smell the wet soil after it rains and hear the buzzards call as they circle high above the canopy.

We always stop under the big horse chestnut tree to spend time with the big friendly chestnut leaves. If I stand on my tip toes they can pat us on our heads like the hands of a gentle giant. And sometimes we have to stop under the widest-spread old oak trees to shelter from the rain (of which there has been plenty this summer!). The piglet snoozes while the sound of the rain on the leaves plays like white noise, and the oaks keep us company until it is safe to continue our walk.

The baby has exceeded my expectations in every way so far. He’s a delightful dish of peaches and cream. We think we’ll keep him. Here’s the view into the pram when he was two weeks old:

Sketch of two week old baby in pram
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