Friday, March 28, 2008

chicken pops

we have the chicken pops (thomas refuses to call them anything else). well when i say we i mean the smallest boy does. last night around 3:30 he was awake and i noticed lumps. her reacts to bites quite badly so we started some anti-histamine and went back to bed. this morning and throughout the day the few 'bites' have spread across his face and hands. gaye took him to the dr this evening and yup we have the chicken pops.

al is doing pretty well he has been a bit clingy but otherwise ok. he looks pretty terrible thou.

as today is the 'worst' day in terms of infection we have just packed thomas off to his Dads in an effort to avoid passing it on to him (his already delayed birthday party is in two weeks). and he, his (other) step mother and I are off to get a shot tomorrow morning which apparently gives a good chance of not passing it on.

so we have cancelled everything, rung everyone we have had contact with in the last week or so (we had a rather large family get together with kids of all ages over Easter) a quiet weekend ahead - just sitting around counting the pops.

Thursday, March 20, 2008


We are off to Melbourne tonight to spend Easter with my bestest friends who have just moved there. We are staying in an apartment down the road - I didn't really think it was fair to land all four of us on them in their new tiny place. I can't wait to see them and just hang out.

Our friendship is largely based on hanging out - at each others places over dinner or lunch or coffee. And although we did on occasion actually do things together it will also be a bit novel to be doing things with them over the weekend.

I have found it a bit of an adjustment them moving away as they were the
people most likely to be found at our place for dinner on a Saturday
night, we knew lots about each others lives and they are my parenting
gurus when I need advice.

Despite my fears we seem to have managed this first two months well - talking lots on the phone and keeping up to date. I guess time will tell how our friendship develops and changes but I am sure we will always be connected.

It has been good for me thou as I have been forced out of my regular and comfortable ways and started inviting other friends around to eat (this is what I really love to do) including branching out with newer friends and renewing or changing my time with older ones.

I started to feel a bit lonely (my two closest friends now live in other
cities) so have been active about seeking people out. I am proud of myself.

I sent out an email today to ask a group of women about starting a bookclub. Although the daggy high schooler in me was worried about rejection I have had good feedback so far and am already planning our first evening event.

We had some very good friends of mine and some new ones around to lunch last Sunday, all our children played well and the adults got on well it was one of those lazy Sunday lunches that went on into the afternoon.

A good start I think.

But still ....I am really really really looking forward to going to Melbourne this afternoon

Monday, March 10, 2008

almost one ...

Not long from now, in just over a month, Al will be one.

And like all parents we are amazed that this first year has gone so fast, that he has developed so much and is so incredibly clever, beautiful and basically divine.

He is completely gorgeous at the moment – tearing up whenever Thomas, Oliver (his babysitter) Gaye or I leave the room or the house. Actually not so much Gaye – much to her chagrin. But I say this is because he is so beautifully attached to her and wonderfully sure that she (who is around the most) will be back that he feels no worry about it. Those of us who come and go almost everyday - to work and school and to play at friends houses and the like are much more unreliable than Gaye and so are treated to tears (while waving) on departure and greeted with incredible joy on our return (legs, arms flapping, grins and happy sounds).

On the sleep front we have put in place a bit more of a night-time and daytime routine which – no surprises here folks – he is responding well too (for the most part last night was an exception) already.

Although he sits at the lower end of the weight chart he has little chubby legs that swing back and forward under his highchair or when he is being carried on a hip. His vocab has increased to aahhs and gaahs but there are no identifiable words yet. He does have a very endearing habit of throwing his head back looking at the ceiling, pursing his lips and making an oohh sound over and over. I am not sure what it is about but we all love it.

He pulls the dog’s coat and puts his hand in his mouth and goes for his toys whenever he is close by (bless Lightning for his patience and kindness). Everything still goes into his mouth to be checked out and thoroughly processed but he has begun actually eating the pieces of vegetables and fruit and toast with avocado we put on his highchair rather than just throwing them over the side.

He cries if I don’t pick him up and let him have a bang on the piano when I am practicing and continues to get very excited when the jolly jumper is pulled out for a bit of jumping action. He continues to crawl through a mixture of commando and the usual style – getting from place a to b rather efficiently. He has just started to pull himself up in the cot occasionally but is not employing this skill yet in any other forum. He is also pretty attached to what I can only call 'the mountain' from my yoga days - toosh in the air, hands and toes on the floor, legs straight and head between his arms. This position is most often at the beginning of a decision to get somewhere fast or when rolling around on our bed (one of his happiest times) in between us mid feed.

There are many many more things about him that I just adore but ...his and Thomas’ mutual love and devotion continues to be of the greatest joy to me (and them). We have recently given Thomas permission to carry him about - and Al seems most happy with this turn of events (we didn’t want to spend the whole time telling Thomas what he could and couldn’t do with Al so just had one rule – Thomas could hold/play/feed Al whenever he wanted as long as he was sitting down) and they have been bathing together a bit which honestly is a huge mess and lots of fun but also the sort of stuff that brings tears to your eyes.

He is almost one.

Thursday, March 06, 2008

Sleep it is a notion …

I am not to sure what it is that Al likes about 4 am in the morning, but we seem to seeing a lot of it of late.

He is a shocking sleeper these days. He has had a cold (as has Gaye), which might explain some of it. But there is now way it explains it all.

He is a very different being from Thomas who responded to a simple routine and being wrapped up. It took time to establish but he is a great sleeper and a great going to bed kid.

I am a very different parent 9 years on too... Al’s life is dictated to more by what the rest of us are doing rather than his potential routine and I am conscious that we have not put consistent energy into developing good sleeping habits for Al. Largely I think because it doesn’t seem to impact on him all that much.

I am not at all against co-sleeping. If Al would sleep when he was with us I would be more than open to him sleeping in with us all night. Thomas came into bed with me for a long time after his 2:00am feed and then once he moved into a bed he would come in sometime between 4:00 – 6:00 in the morning and snuggled in for more sleep and a cuddle. He continues to come in the mornings – especially on weekends to lie with us, sometimes hanging out in our bed after the rest of us have left.

But Al rolls around and wakes and crawls, he feeds over and over – just because it is there I think – of late he seems to be enjoying being awake for a couple of hours where he is perfectly happy if he is with us (but wide awake) and sobs if left in his cot. He is much more strong willed than Thomas was (or we are older and tireder) and it is so much more complex with the boys sharing a room.

We are not of the controlled crying mould of parenting and so we are thinking of getting in help (there is a private – probably outrageously expensive – service here where the woman comes for 3 nights and helps you learn how to settle and teach the baby to sleep without controlled crying. Which makes me feel a bit like a weird failed parent but still you know if someone knows something and it would help well these days I need my sleep, we both work, we have min childcare and two children.

The thing that is interesting thou is that he continues to not be all that impacted by his own lack of sleep. He is a happy fellow most of the time and apart from a bit of whinging is good natured and friendly and easy going.

I sometimes think that my simple (but firmish) routine for Thomas might be part of the reason he has a ‘high need know’ about what is going on next. He has got more easygoing as he has got older but when he was younger a throw out of the routine meant hell to pay. Al is not like that and I would hate for him to lose that easy going sleep when I can, eat when it is there smiley interaction because we developed one.