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Sleepy times and big boy beds

Henry is asleep on the sofa next to me. I’m on my new kindle fire, and loving it. It’s a lot easier to whip out when the babe is napping, and doesn’t take as long to load as my ancient laptop.

We’ve recently moved Henry out of his cot and into his big boy bed, so now he’s started napping on the sofa to make his new bed just for night times. It’s a fire engine, and its only about the height of his little cotbed mattress. For the last three nights he’s been in it, he’s been really good. He goes to sleep about half seven and doesn’t wake up until around six in the morning. The first morning he didn’t realise he could climb out of it so just sat in bed waiting for us to come and get him.

He looks so little but so grown up, and things are changing fast. He now insists that he walks along the pavement instead  of being carried anywhere. It just means that we have to be extra organised and leave a good twenty minutes earlier to factor in time for little steps. He does so well though, and I’m so proud of him. He wants to learn and he wants to be able to do these things. I can see him getting very frustrated when he sees us or other children doing things he can’t yet. But that’s good, because I see ambition in him and he’s going to be a clever boy.

It helps when he’s being stubborn or defiant to get him to feel like a big boy. Hence the fire engine bed. We’re seeing a lot of difference in him of late. It all goes so fast, and we’re not pushing to grow up, and were not stopping him from progressing either. It all happens in a blink of an eye.

I must remember to record these little things. His baby book is looking very healthy, but I’ve still got a lot of photos to organise. He doesn’t even look like the little boy I gave birth to. He’s comfortably in 12-18 months clothes now, which is strange when I come across newborn clothes that used to swamp him.

My boy, he’s a little wonder.

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Vaccinations

They are horrible things, vaccinations.

It is never nice to see the thing you love the most in this world in pain. And it is worse knowing that you are making them sit there.

But it is for their own good. Let’s be frank about it; the disease/infection it is designed to prevent is always a whole lot worse than a tiny little needle and a second of discomfort.

And with a fall in parents taking their beloved for the immunisations offered for free comes a rise in the illness we are trying to prevent. It means that the risks are real.

Please, take your baby to their appointments.

Further reading

Whooping cough outbreak 

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Fever and Karina

I’m ill.

It’s difficult being ill when you got a little one. I think back to all those times I used to just curl up on the sofa, while my mum would bring me soup and wet flannels. I wouldn’t even have to put them on my own head. It’s nice to have someone to look after you.

But it’s all different when you are the parent. There is someone dependant on you, who (in the early stages) doesn’t quite understand that no, you can’t play with them all the time and no, you can’t go to the park today. Quite frankly, it’s a miracle you stumbled out of bed when your throat feels like it’s on fire – matching the rest of your feverish body – and a cough that could bring the house down. I feel so weak.

But really, it’s only glandular fever. It’s not going to kill me. I will get better in a relatively short period of time. There will be no lasting complications, no ‘what if’ and no wondering if I will be around, because I will be.

I was reading the news as usual this morning, as I came across the tragic story of Karina Menzies, just 32 years old, who was one of the victims of a hit-and-run. It wasn’t an accident. It was an act of madness, evil and cruelty beyond comprehension. The story goes that she sacrificed her life for that of two of her children who were with her as the van aimed for the pedestrians on a fire station forecourt. Her children are aged 23 months and eight. She died because in an instant she knew what she had to do.

It’s just awful and heart-wrenching. I know that I would do the same in a situation where it was my life of my son’s. I know that I would save him no matter what without a moments hesitation.

Such is a mother’s love. It is unfaltering in its strength.

Read the full story here.

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Finding Hours

It seems as if it is getting harder to find the time to sit and write. Or do anything really.

I am all too aware of the time that is taken up by the things that have to be done – working, cooking, cleaning – but now there is a new leech on time that often takes over, and I’m not even talking about having children to run around after. It’s technology.

I reap the benefits of blogging, when I can actually find the time, but there are some more pointless and unfortunately very addictive sides to being in the tech generation. One example of this is my oh-so-brilliant smartphone. I loved this when I first got it. I’m sure everyone does, it’s very exciting getting a new gadget to play with. Henry was excited about getting a new chew toy too.

The problem is, with all these apps and unlimited texts and wi-fi is that I struggle to put it down. It gets to the point where I have to go and put it in the other room to stop myself picking up, not through boredom but habit, and mindlessly scrolling through facebook and twitter. It is a lot easier to manage your facebook use when you can only log in on your laptop. The fact that it is always there is haunting me. It is ridiculous when it starts eating into the quality time I am spending with the little man.

It’s more than ridiculous. It’s disgraceful.

I don’t use it more than is necessary now until Henry has gone to bed. I’m only writing this now as the bubs is in bed and I have one of those rare moments to myself. I continue to get shocked by the parents taking their children to the park and just ignoring them while on phones. The toddlers and young children with ipads. What is wrong with a storybook and a cuddle?

I can understand schoolchildren with laptops for homework but I cannot understand a baby with an iphone.

If you want to discuss this further, you can catch me after 7pm, because before that time I will be giving Henry my undivided attention.

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Breaking News: New Development

Henry stood up yesterday, without holding on to anything. I couldn’t believe it. He’s only just turned nine months last week, and he’s already capable of so much. The concentration on his little face was incredible. I could see his muscles tense in his whole body, wobbling slightly, trying to balance. He realised he was doing it without falling, and gave me the cheekiest grin as I stood there, mouth open wide in awe.

He’s just so clever. He waves really well now, and claps all the time. He said ‘grandada’ for the first time a few days ago too, adding to his list of words he says out of context but impressing us nonetheless.

It’s amazing how he’s growing so fast into this little boy I can’t help but be insanely proud of. It’s just shocking how much emotion one little thing can make you feel. It’s crazy how much love and pride can explode inside you, and I understand now when you get grandparents telling you stories about their beloved grandchildren. I can completely relate to all those parents whose first words to you after ‘Hello’ are ‘I have two of my own, you know,’ before launching head-first into a story about how they once did this and once did that.

And I can appreciate why you would feel the need to write about every little thing your pride and joy has achieved in an online blog.

Thanks for listening. What did your son or daughter do that made you smile with pride and love today?

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Intolerance; the Battle for Breastfeeding in Public

There has been a few of these stories in the media lately. Breastfeeding mothers staged protest in Brighton centre, after a new mum was told the sight of her breastfeeding in public was ‘unpleasant’ and was asked to cover up more. An Oxford branch of Debenhams was recently involved in a dispute after two managers asked a breastfeeding mother to stop.

I find these incidents appalling, and as a mother who is (still!) breastfeeding, can say that these experiences are all too common. I prefer to cover up as much as I can, but it isn’t always possible. I felt the harsh stares of the disapproving public, who are either ignorant to the needs of a little one or believe a new mum should be cooped up in her home until she is ready to give up the boob.

It has become a lot better in recent times, with women gaining more rights due to the Equality Act of October 2011. It means that a woman cannot be asked to stop, ‘cover up more’ or be refused service or asked to leave a public place because she is breastfeeding. However, many people are unaware of this, which results in people believing it is okay to ask a mother to stop if it makes them uncomfortable, and equally some mothers feel guilty or obliged to grant them their request.

Breastfeeding can be stressful enough, without adding the pressure of carrying out this task in public. Also, when a baby needs feeding, it needs feeding. For the most part, it won’t stop crying until it gets milk so asking someone to stop breastfeeding isn’t going to help matters in any respect.

I also logged onto Facebook this afternoon to see that someone had posted the following status;

Note my comments marked HM. I just couldn’t believe it. I am pleased however that I am not the only one who objected, but I had to really hold back the shock and anger that was brewing…

I am really happy that times are changing though. I am so glad that we have these rights, to protect us and our babies from intolerance and ignorance. I feel lucky that I was able to breastfeed, and that I live in a time where if I had decided not to, that would have been acceptable too.

There’s still a way to go, but so far, it’s a win for mumkind.

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When to Wean?

There is no shortage of advice on the subject of weaning; everything from when to start to what equipment you should be using. If you hunt around for the recommendations, you will soon realise that most of the well-meaning advice is often conflicting and very confusing.

Obviously, as a parent, I want to do the best for my little Henry. I know that the digestive system is not yet developed enough to cope with anything other than breastmilk or formula until 17 weeks. However, it is now recommended that weaning is started after six months, but I don’t know any parents that have waited until then. Also, I’m sure that each and every baby is different. The question is, what is right for mine?

Well, he can sit up with minimal support now, he has started waking up for another feed in the night, he seems so much hungrier and I always seem to be feeding him now. He stares at us when we eat, and he has recently started sucking his hands like there’s no tomorrow.

I think it really is better to just go with your instincts. Failing that, my own mother is a pretty good source of information…

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Kids Rock Clothing Range

Kiddicare announced that it has discontinued the range of Kids Rock baby clothing after it exploded in the press this morning. They tweeted earlier today:

‘We’d like to reiterate, following Sun article today, Kiddicare immediately removed Kids Rock items from sale in line with customer feedback.’

There has been a lot of response generated on Facebook and Twitter about the particular baby vest that carried the slogan ‘Help I’m being kidnapped these are not my parents’. It seems as if the public are split right down the middle on this particular story. I can see how it could cause offense to those directly related to child abduction, and there is no doubt that it is pretty much every parent’s worst nightmare. However, it is clearly supposed to be a joke, even if it is in very bad taste. I have to be honest, I have seen a lot worse on adult clothing, worn in public in full view of children and anyone who cares to notice! This is a baby vest, and unless I am mistaken will go under other clothes. It is solely for the parent’s own amusement, and if they think that it is funny then that is their call. I personally think the whole thing has been blown out of proportion. I wouldn’t buy it, but I like to dress my child in nice clothes.

When I saw it, while browsing through Kiddicare’s website, I didn’t choose to buy it. If that many people got so upset about it, then it was probably the right decision to stop selling it. It is still available through Kids Rock’s website for anyone who wants to seek it out. I will continue to buy from Kiddicare for as long as they provide me with the excellent service they currently do!