31D2A495-E60A-4A9C-B891-F8C8ACA31DB9548D9061-615D-471E-A2A2-5DE5F09B5F04Tomorrow my teeny tiny little boy is turning one. How in bejesus did that happen?! I literally feel like I’ve blinked and he’s gone from a newborn to an almost-toddler and I haven’t even had time to breathe. So there you have the biggest cliché in the world; time flies.

Since I’m totes emosh over ‘ere (as I type this he’s fallen asleep in my arms and I don’t want to put him back down) I thought I’d compile a list of a few of my favourite Henry moments. I could go on all day so I’ll try and keep it concise. By the way, have you ever tried to pick nine favourite photos of your child?! Well it turns out its impossible. I narrowed it down to 18 which is why I have two pictures in this post, just in case you were wondering why I’m being so generous… Anyway….

  1. Him being born. Obviously I had to start there. After 36 hours of labour he was born at 12.40pm, on my brothers birthday. I worked bloomin’ hard for him and he’s worth every painful second.
  2. The first time he smiled. It was a Sunday morning and we were all having cuddles in bed when he smiled at Carl singing a celebratory ‘Henry only woke up twice last night song’
  3. The first time he laughed. He has the most infectious little giggle. After the smile, Carl was also the instigator of the giggle which he achieved by pretending to eat him. I like to think that I laid the groundwork because I taught Carl to pretend to eat him, I just didn’t get the same reception. As is life. Sigh.
  4. His first swimming lesson. He’s such a little water baby, he loves the bath, the shower, the pool. Heck even spitting his drink down his front amuses him.
  5. Our first family holiday in Norfolk. We went with my mum, grandparents and brother and Henry had a whale of a time, basking in all the extra attention.
  6. Other than to the dog, Henry is pretty stingey with his kisses. But sometimes he clambers over, pinches my cheeks and plants a big, sloppy kiss on me and I love it.
  7. His first Christmas. Charging around with his trolley while relatives coo-ed over him, he was in his element and it was very, very cute.

I could continue but I’ll leave it there. My year with Henry has been the best of my life and I can’t wait to see what this year brings.

What’s your favourite memory of your baby’s first year?

Tammymum
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Nappy change

Even nappy change is fun in our house

So as of the middle of next month I am officially a SAHM – that’s a ‘Stay at Home Mum’ for those not au fait with parenting lingo. After what feels like months of negotiations, my employer and I failed to reach a flexible working agreement and so here I am. My initial reaction was something along the lines of (apologies for the incoherence):

how in the world am I going to entertain a very active almost-toddler with no income and less playdate companions as everyone in my NCT group is going back to work EXCEPT ME and my house is tiny and I’ll have no money and I’ll have to give my child oranges for Christmas and I’ll have to start darning socks oh-my-gawd the world is ending…’

A little later I regained my ability to reason and I actually think it’s not a bad outcome for our family, I’ll have more time with my beautiful little boy and everything happens for a reason.

Anyway, when it became a possibility that returning to work may not be an option my mum said to me, in the nicest possible way, ‘if you don’t go back to work I do think you should try and keep your house a little bit tidier’. Cheers Mum. So the first Monday morning as an official SAHM arrived and I decided to take on board what she’d said and become housewife-mother-extraordinare. I’d do the food shop, take Henry to his doctors appointment, take the dog for her booster vaccination, make lunch, bake bread, bake cookies, pick up the Nespresso capsules, clean the living room and organise the toys.

I did manage the food shop and the doctors appointment. I forgot to take the poor dog to the vets – although she avoided being stabbed in the neck so she’s winning. I made a wonderful lunch of pea fritters with avocado – Henry spat out the first mouthful and threw the rest on the floor, which the dog promptly gobbled up – another win for her. I picked up the coffee (priorities right there), I did not bake bread. I did bake cookies and burnt them. I half cleaned the living room and ‘organised’ the toys by throwing them in a basket.

When Carl came home the sofa was in the middle of the living room with the hoover abandoned behind it and the rug was rolled up. The kitchen smelled like burnt cookies and Henry had vegetable korma in his eyebrows, which again he kept dropping on the floor for the dog. In fact my main parental achievement for the day had been cooking three very healthy meals, none of which were consumed by the intended recipient. All the intended recipient wanted to eat were Organix Carrot Puffs and bagels.

Housewife-mother-extraordinare I clearly am not but I will try again tomorrow. And the next day. And the next day. And the next. But that is why motherhood is the best job, a bad day still ends with a hug and a sloppy kiss.

 

Mummuddlingthrough
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Beautiful sceneAlthough we’re only a week in to the new year, having read everyone’s New Year posts I’m feeling pretty late to the table but I’m going to type away regardless.

Despite it’s bad rep, 2016 was pretty good for me. It saw the birth of our beautiful baby boy in January, which then allowed me to spend a blissful *most of the time * year at his beck and call, tending to his every whim and generally watching him grow into the strong-willed, cheeky and affectionate (poking and hair pulling aside) almost-one-year-old he is now. Not only that, but Mummy and Daddy made it through an entire year without killing each other and we’re now immersed in parenthood and have never been happier.

So I was a little sad to wave goodbye to the most memorable, life changing and intense year of my life, but I’m all about looking to the future and I’m quietly hopeful that 2017 won’t turn out so bad. Here’s what I’m going to be embracing this year –

  1. Less is more. This is the year I’m going to *attempt* to be a little more frugal. I’m an undeniable shopaholic. Carl says that I’ve not had a good day if I’ve not spent any money and he’s not far wrong. I like to by STUFF. Any stuff. But mainly clothes, shoes, bags and make-up. This year I want to declutter, and focus more on experiences. I think the money could be better spent on family days out making memories and so that’s what I plan to do. Also, no doubt thrilled at the prospect of my new found penny pinching Carl happily joined me in watching this documentary which I’d definitely recommend. Aspects were a little extreme but the jist is that we’re always trying to achieve happiness by buying stuff, which doesn’t help so we buy more stuff etc, etc. By only possessing what we need we focus more on things that will truly make us happy. Which leads me on my next read – Spark Joy is on it’s way to me right now… I am aware of the ridiculousness that is buying an item in order to read about not needing so many items so we’ll call it research and move on…
  2. Following on from the above, I want to find a hobby that is not buying clothes, shoes and make-up. Carl very kindly gifted me a new camera for Christmas and I’m enjoying getting snap happy at every opportunity. I’m trying to learn how to take a good picture. I’m also keen to try my hand at flower arranging, inspired by this beautiful book which was a gift from my friend Hannah for Christmas.
  3. Not to bore others with my indecision. I’m going to try not to over analyse every situation, forcing anyone who’ll listen into doing the same. I knew I’d gone to far when I found myself explaining one predicament to the poor lady on the checkout at Asda. Instead, I’m going to try and trust my gut and roll with the punches.

So there we go. They are my thoughts for the new year. Do you believe in resolutions?

 

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Tammymum
Diary of an imperfect mum
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Daddy and baby asleepI’ve talked at great length about my bedtime woes – here, here & here to name but a few… and in my brighter moments I accept that babies just don’t sleep and I’ll one day pine to be needed the way I am now. But in the depths of sleep deprivation, after a few too many consecutive near-sleepless nights, I’m at my wits end. It was in one of these moments that I delved into the world of co-sleeping and I’m here to tell you the results.

We’ve never had too much of a problem getting Henry into bed, it’s keeping him in there that induces my eyebags and keeps Touche Eclat in business. We have a bedtime routine, the standard story – bath – feed combo which I think helped to teach Henry the difference between day and night. He’s also fairly easy to settle back to sleep during the night most of the time. The problem is the frequency of his wakings. He generally makes it ’til about 1am without much fuss, but can then be up every hour. Which means I get very little sleep from then on and I’m almost certain he’s looking for comfort.

So last week Henry relegated his Daddy to the spare bed and we gave the whole co-sleeping thing a go. I placed a row of pillows at the edge of the bed and rolled myself up in the quilt to give him as much space as possible while he slept in his Grobag as normal – I also consulted the Lullaby Trust for safe co-sleeping. I wasn’t confident that I’d get that much sleep myself but concluded that not actually having to get out of bed would be preferrable to stumbling across the landing 17 times. I found I slept very lightly, and I don’t think I missed a stir, but it was 3am before he woke up and a quick pat on the back was all he needed and he was back to sleep until 7.30. Yep…7.30am. SEVEN THIRTY ANTE MERIDIEM. That’s like midday in parent terms. We all started the day with a family breakfast and much more  organisation than we’re generally accustomed to.

That night we did the same again from when he woke up the first time – that night at 11pm and he slept until 6am. I also slept better, still lightly but much better than normal and I felt pretty sprightly the following day.

Since then, we’ve had a couple of nights where he’s slept in the cot ok – only waking up once. We’ve also had a couple of nights where he’s slept with me from his first wake at around 1am and then he’s slept right through until a reasonable hour of the morning – ie. after 6am. People keep telling me that it’s not a great habit to get into, and they could be right. I like sharing the bed with my husband. But I also like not having to get out of bed and knowing that Henry is content and comfortable. It’s lovely to see him wake up and to feel and hear his little baby breath while he sleeps.

While it may not be a great habit, for now if he needs comfort I’m happy to oblige, I think we’re all better off having slept better and I’m thankful to have found a way to make that happen. In fact, if I could go back in time I think it’s something I would’ve explored earlier for a number of reasons and something I would definitely consider with a second baby.

What are your views on co-sleeping?

This post is in collaboration with Blinds-Hut. You can check out other sleeping experiments here.

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Processed with VSCO with f2 presetI’ve always had an inkling that I might have a little monkey on my hands. I’m not sure if it’s his daddy’s mischievous nature or the cheeky little look in his eye but either way I’m noticing evidence of it more and more. Which brings be around the this post which I’m sure I’ll want to add to as the weeks, months and years pass; behaviours I want to laugh at but can’t because they’re naughty:

  1. Opening his mouth full of food, sticking out his tongue pasted in food and promptly spitting it out. Don’t you like it? Are you full?! DON’T PUT IT IN YOUR MOUTH THEN!
  2. Swinging on the baby gate complete with toothy grin. It’s funny & cute. And to be honest, sometimes I let him get on with it. Pick your battles.
  3. Spitting out water. Repeatedly. Annoying because it’s just another reason for an outfit change. Funny because…well why?! Why would spit water on yourself?!
  4. Opening and closing the drawers repeatedly. Getting annoyed because they won’t close because mummy’s trapped something in there so you can’t trap your fingers. Angrily grabbing said object and throwing it on the floor so the drawers will close.
  5. Chasing the dog around trying to poke her up the bum. I think what our feral pug is experiencing is karma for the last two years spent torturing us.
  6. Stiffening up rendering it highly difficult to get him in the car seat / high chair / pushchair. I’m told this is a very uncooperative phase and it would be very frustrating if his fits of giggles after he loses the battle of the seated position didn’t add the amusement factor.
  7. Pulling toys out of the box after I’ve put them back in the box at bedtime.

I may continue to add these as they occur. Everyday’s a school day in our house! Do you have any to add? I’m just dying to know what’s to come *sigh*

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