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Duck Pond

It’s such a lovely, sunny day today that we took Henry out in his pushchair and took him to the park. We had a nice walk around the duck pond and over bridges and in the woods, bought ice creams and enjoyed the sunshine.

Henry loves being outside so much. Apparently I was the same as a child. It’s funny how he can be so upset indoors for some unknown reason yet as soon as we step outside he’s the happiest little boy on the planet.

I think we may have to invest in some National Trust memberships when he’s a little older. He’s going to be a nature kid. I’m glad. Better that than television and xbox. Little boys need the park and outdoor games, especially in summer. It will be lovely to take him to feed the ducks too. There’s so many things to get excited about now.

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Windmill

Henry and I went on a walk along the seafront today, and this time we had my parents and brother for company. It’s nice to have the company, and Henry does love his family. I want them to be a big part of his life – family is important. I also invested in a parasol for his pushchair. It works perfectly, keeping the sun out of my son’s eyes.

He was very well behaved as well. We only had a tiny outburst in the shop, but he seems to do that whenever we go inside, he just loves being outdoors! It was such a nice day though, we could sit outside with our coffee and chocolate cake and feel very comfortable. Henry was snoozing under his brand new parasol from Boots at this point, without a care in the world.

My mother suggested I buy him a little windmill we saw displayed outside one of the newsagents. Henry absolutely loves it. He stares at it, and even stops mid-cry to gaze at its shiny spirals. It is the best £1.50 I ever spent. The entertainment is endless.

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Lonely Seaside Stroll

It gets a little lonely sometimes, after the first few months. It is just around the time when you settle into your new role as a cleaner/carer/caterer and general handyperson. It has been a long time since the other half went back to work. A week off just doesn’t seem right when you have a new baby, but technically (even if not emotionally) it only takes one person to look after a baby, so that’s just the way it is.

When on maternity leave, it is lovely to not have any professional responsibility for the time being, while you get to grips with parenting in the early stages. It does, however, leave you on your own most of the time. The days go by quickly and slowly at the same time. It’s an odd feeling, not going to work. I, like a lot of other lucky people, have never been unemployed. It takes getting used to. Not because I have a lack of things to do, the list of chores is never-ending, but because it generally involves being on my own with Henry. I never really used to do anything alone.

While your life stops, almost as if time is standing still, everyone else carries going to work, and having busy social lives. Unfortunately most of these plans don’t include me anymore. I’m not interested in going clubbing anymore, unlike most people my age. I get bored, the music is the type you can only appreciate when very drunk and I would rather spend the time with Henry, or sleeping.

So today, I decided to put Henry in his pushchair and go for a nice, long walk by the sea. It was such a lovely day and it seemed a shame to waste it. This adds to the list of things I’ve only done on my own since Henry was born, like going to Costa for a coffee, going out for lunch, and going shopping. All these things previously felt like group tasks.

At least I’m not entirely on my own. Henry is brilliant company for a four-month-old, and when he giggles, it makes me feel so lucky to have this special time with him.

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Sunshine and Warm Weather Work

Henry was a winter baby. Ever since he was born, I have always been worrying about whether he is warm enough and if he needs an extra blanket or two. Today, for the first time since he was born, I went out without being loaded down by coats, gloves, blankets and hats. It was lovely and sunny: not bad for ‘just about March’ weather. I had bought a little pot of baby suncream (factor 50) to carry in the nappy bag for days out this summer. It was very odd worrying about sunburn rather than temperature.

I can’t wait until the weather allows for trips to the beach and days in the park. Although, with the warmer weather comes spring, and spring means I’m just that little bit closer to that time I have to go back to work. I want to go, for myself and for Henry and our family, but I don’t. It will be good for me to have time to pursue what I want in life. I still want a career and my own funds and a feeling of self-worth. But leaving Henry is going to be so hard. It makes me upset just thinking about it. I will never again have this much time to spend with Henry, and it’s sad. I just have to make the most of it.

On the plus side, a bit of adult conversation will be quite welcome. Also, it will make me appreciate just how much I love spending time with Henry.

He was so well-behaved today. I went for a coffee with friends and pottering around town in the shops. He only moaned a little, towards the end when he got tired. Other than that, he was fantastic. It makes it so much easier to go out when I know he’s going to be good for me. There’s nothing worse than pushing around a pushchair with a screaming baby in it. It’s so stressful when you want to make them comfortable straight away, but you’re in a queue or paying for something. Three-month-olds don’t understand the words ‘hang on a minute’. When hunger strikes…

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The Perfect Pushchair

I adore my pushchair. It is absolutely perfect for me. It was paid for as a baby gift by my parents, but the other half and I got to choose it. We all went down to Mothercare and did the funny test-run around the store. It was the first one we tried out, and after trying several others, it always came back to that one. We decided on the Silver Cross Pop Classic Stroller – Blue Bubbles, and I have never regretted it. It fits perfectly in the boot of my small, run-around-town car, is really very light and is so quick and easy to expand and collapse. I look at other parents struggling to work out how to pull their buggies apart and I smile to myself.

It was because I heard so many stories about new mums and dads spending a fortune on huge, expensive travel systems, only to go out and purchase a smaller more practical model at a fraction of the cost just weeks later that I decided on this one. It may not be the best, but it is the best for me.

Take my advice, buy a pushchair that you can use. There are so many available, but make sure it will fit in with your lifestyle. But most of all, don’t be the parent standing outside their car for twenty minutes in the rain trying to remember which lever you were supposed to pull first.