Wednesday, November 18, 2009
Friday, November 6, 2009
That's me sitting behind Peaches. I had just made it home from London which is why I'm wearing such a fab coat and a pair of boots instead of my usual scruffy stuff.
Wednesday, November 4, 2009
Friday, October 30, 2009
Tuesday, October 20, 2009
Monday, October 19, 2009
(By the way, I'm sitting on that very stool right now as I type this post. I've just finished a cottage cheese sandwich from Tea & Times.)
Sunday, October 11, 2009
Friday, October 9, 2009
Monday, October 5, 2009
Finally, here's a warning for Sue and Mr Scrappy who will be HERE, this Saturday. When travelling through rail stations, watch out for the tickly barriers. We think she means ticket barriers, but maybe she knows something we don't.
Monday, September 21, 2009
Friday, September 18, 2009
I'm coming to terms with the fact that Peaches is not a baby any more. Of course, she'll always be 'my baby'. And there are days when she's cuddlier and more demanding.
- Shaddup, mummy. Well excuuuuse me, but we don't say shut up in this house. The trick is to never find it amusing, to always remind her we don't say it and to ask for an apology. So far so good.
- Poo, poo. Mmm. I don't know anyone else who sings the 'poo poo' song. However, by not freaking out and saying that it's not a nice song, her interest in it is waning. Slowly. Perhaps it hasn't helped that we have applauded the occasional potty experience, culminating in her leading us to the potty and with a flourish of hands, announcing, 'Ta daaaaa'.
- She won't eat vegetables. Well until today. When I didn't give her lunch, didn't let her drink too much juice and didn't give any snacks. And said we'd only do painting if she ate all her veg. That seemed to work. So now I know she can...
Thursday, September 10, 2009
I gave Sue a call this morning and even spoke to Miss 13 who apparently groaned and thought I was a double glazing saleswoman.
It was a wonderfully exciting thing to speak to a friendly blogger after so much interweb chat. In fact, when I was considering where to go for coffee in the Bay, I nearly called this woman. But I chickened out. More fool me - next time I won't be so shy.
While we are on the subject of neighbourhood celebrities, I'm also hoping that Sue will catch sight of my window cleaner. This year, he won the title of UK's strongest man. Though she's more likely to see Suggs - he always seems to be out in the same restaurant as us.
Sunday, September 6, 2009
Monday, August 31, 2009
Monday, August 24, 2009
Monday, August 17, 2009
Saturday, August 15, 2009
Friday, August 14, 2009
- it's ridiculous that sharia law should attempt to prevent women from wearing trousers
- the NHS is a lifesaver and gives a free healthcare at the point of delivery to everyone
- Amy Winehouse still needs to sort her hair (and head) out
- women's sport is still underreported in the news and I'm disappointed that boxing is still an Olympic sport even if it now includes women (didn't see that one coming)
In the evenings, we ate in the town. With restaurants around a square with a fountain in the middle, it was just about possible to eat and keep an eye on her while she ran around making friends.
In short, it's the sort of holiday that floats my boat.
Monday, June 15, 2009
Even though I'm blogging during a thunderstorm and some crazy hail, I have been enjoying some fabulous summer days. Each day I have to weigh up the relative merits of cycle rides, parks, swings, painting, beach and paddling pool.
Painting is very low on my list of desirable activities but extremely high on Peaches'. Despite that sunny expression of innocence on her face, her favourite colour is black with lots of water. Then she pushes and splodges grimy water across the paper until the point when she decides to paint her hand, her feet, her arm... you get the idea.
I'm not a major neat freak, but it's the surest way to finish off my patience. Perhaps I'd be able to deal with it if she used red or green. I try and join in and paint astronauts, princesses, fruit, shapes. But once she's on to the third sheet of grey misery I can't take it any more.
Before you know it, I'll have whipped out a roll of kitchen paper and will be cleaning up and singing in a cheery voice, 'it's time to ride your bike, let's go the beach way and will get to the swings'.
Peaches: Where's my sister?
Recaro: She's not invented yet.
walking with fabulous childminder, when out of the blue...
Peaches: My sister's not invented yet.
chatting on her toy mobile phone...
Peaches: I haven't seen you in ages. [Phoney laugh]. Yes. Yes. Bye.
Sass: Who were you talking to?
Peaches: My sister.
Sass: What's her name?
drinking milk before bed at the end of a very long, nap-free day...
Peaches: (looking very sad) Mummy, where's my sister?
Is she trying to tell me something? Don't answer that.
I'm not a big believer in insisting Peaches says a bright hello to every person she meets. I think children go through shy phases and I don't see that ridicule or forcing them to say hello helps. My preferred tactic, right or wrong, is to declare that she's having a shy moment and that's she'll be fine in a moment.
And usually she is.
There are other times, when Peaches just wants to make friends. Sometimes that works really well, other times... even at the age of three there are little girls who know how to snub a friendly overture. Other times, it's just that the other child is having their own shy moment.
So now I am on a mission of seeing that Peaches gets a playdate with one of her buddies at least once every weekend. My theory (from the try-it-and-see school of parenting) is to give her plenty of chances to build good friendships from a young age based on frequency and fun.
That way, when someone is rude, thoughtless or shy, she knows they are just, well, rude, thoughtless or shy. She's also going to know that she's got a number of friends who are good fun, lively and sociable and that she's going to see them all again some time soon.
The next challenge might be to listen to her preference about who to play with... but I'll face that battle when I have to.
For SAHM this might seem like a no-brainer. As a working mum, it's been tempting to leave all that socialising, play group activity to the childminder. But I'm stepping up to the plate now. I'm taking telephone numbers off of people in the supermarket so that we can arrange playdates. This is a whole new way of living. It seems that I'm having to put my shy moment behind me too.
Tuesday, June 2, 2009
My adventurous little girl spent her first day in pre-school nursery on Monday.
Arguably it's a little early for 'school', but there were a number of reasons for our decision:
1. She's confident and sociable. She can handle the challenge.
2. She's so happy and secure at the childminder's that it would be good to put her through the challenge of pre-school while she still has three fabulous days a week with the heavenly childminder.
3. It's easier to get a child into pre-school of choice over the summer months rather than wait till September.
She'd been sick on Sunday and was still a little bit under the weather on Monday but she went anyway. And she was fine. She made friends, played well, had a big afternoon nap and painted a picture of a gorilla (that's an orange splodge to you and me).
Because I'm a responsible, loving mother I phoned to check she was settling in okay. Everything was good. As I put the phone back on the hook, I start sobbing.
It's the overwhelming feeling of love and loss that does for me. As I prepare Peaches to face new situations, I realise I'm preparing her to go her own way. It's all as it should be. I just have to cry about it now and then.
Sunday, May 17, 2009
All this foodie preparation meant that once we arrived at our remote farmyard cottage, we wouldn't have to trek out to any of the island's understocked corner shops. They are good for tins and frozen stuff, but for some reason despite the wealth of sheep and cows on the hillsides, there's precious little local produce in the shops.
Recaro also made sure Peaches had a bag of beach toys (we did get some sunshine) and a Shrek DVD for rainy weather.
My contribution? While - I packed clothes for me and Peaches and made sure I got home from work in time to jump in the car for our overnight drive from Kent to Lancaster and on to the Scottish highlands and islands the next morning.
And I made this splendid robot outfit out of a wine box and an egg carton. Over the course of the week, we added switches, dials and antennae.
Who says I'm not crafty?
Friday, May 15, 2009
That's not to say I hadn't heard about what a fine county it's supposed to be. Every typically bluff Yorkshire man I've ever met is only too willing to share their views on how it's God's own county. Yorkshire women don't seem to be under the same compulsion (if anyone knows why that is, please tell).
Recently, I had the opportunity to see for myself how lovely Yorkshire is. The patchwork of fields and dry stone walls are chocolate-box cute. Just as I got used to this pretty scenery, we found ourselves driving across broad, windswept moors before plunging down into a leafy green valley into the town of Hebden Bridge. Where I'm sad to say there was no time to shop, but if I'd had the time I suspect I could have spent a small fortune.
Yorkshire hadn't been on our list of places to visit, but we were there for a wedding. Call us Vince Vaughan and Owen Wilson - but we are a couple that love a good wedding. We'll travel anywhere for a three course dinner, champagne and a cheesy disco.
Plus it would give us a chance to dress Peaches up and pressurise complete strangers into admiring our supa-cute daughter. Yes, we are THAT couple.
Ce, a colleague of Recaro's was getting married in her home town of Hebden Bridge and after a long campaign by Recaro to make sure she knew just how easy it would be for us to break our journey home from a week in Scotland... she invited us. It had been a tense few weeks in the strangely lush household, but at last we could relax and pack our wedding outfits.
If she found Peaches' unwavering attention bewildering, Ce didn't let it show...
There were a few problems - our bed and breakfast was depressing and we arrived in church several minutes after the bride - but Peaches was good in church, made friends with the other children, spent most of her time at dinner sitting at another table (does this mean she's already embarrassed to be seen with us), didn't fall in the nearby river and did take some good (in focus) candid photos.In case you wonder, the church had a spare, derelict church in the grounds. I wouldn't want anyone to go away with the impression that people in Yorkshire don't believe in roofs.
I was pleased Peaches took a photo of the cake. The flowers on our wedding cake were RUBBISH. So much so that we skipped the cake cutting photos at our wedding. I always feel an incredible feeling of relief when I see other people get it right.
Another surprise for me, was seeing that this wasn't just a three course dinner. Between the starter and main course we had Yorkshire pudding and red onion gravy. I am a naive southerner. I had no idea that's what they do up north. It makes so much sense - I've always thought a roast beef dinner looks ridiculous with a Yorkshire pudding sat on top. This could be a tradition we'll be introducing to Whitstable.