My Amazing Little Bear

My Amazing Little Bear

I’m not ashamed to say that I am taking this time to have a completely self indulgent rave about my son.  Before having him I figured my life would be turned upside down, that holidays would be impossible, that visiting friends would be chaotic at best, and that my life would revolve around a rigid routine.

I dreamt that this wouldn’t be the case, that “normal life” would continue…to my surprise, it has!

In the very early days we had to fit a certain amount of stuff around his needs, especially feeds, but I still think we had it quite easy.  He would happily sleep in the buggy/cot/car or on a spare bed/floor, and so we were still able to get out and about.  As he got older it became easier still.  He will eat anything, sit nicely in restaurants, behave on aeroplanes, play nicely in new surroundings.

Today, we picked him up after a sleepover with Nanny and Grumps, then took him to see some friends.  It was somewhere completely new for him, and he had only met them a couple of times before.  As we arrived the bottom lip came out, he was very unsure and I thought we were on the verge of a meltdown, but he quickly recovered and tucked into his lunch.  He was soon playing happily and actively engaging with them.  By the time we left he was exploring on his own and jumping on the bed! All this joy and excitement when by rights, he should have been shattered…it was nearly 2 hours past his usual naptime.

And that’s just a glimpse of how adaptable he is.  I never worry about taking him to places, he always makes me proud and can adjust to most situations.

I know he has moments where he tests me, but these are rare and usually my fault rather than his.  I’m sure I will get my fair share of the terrible times in the coming years, but right here, right now it’s all pretty perfect!

The Day Dreaming Mummy
~♡~

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Swimming…Love it or Loath it?!

Swimming…Love it or Loath it?!

Little Bear is definately a lover…no, a loather…no, a lover…oh I don’t know and neither does he!

From the minute I told him that yeasterday was a swimming day he’s been excitedly talking about what he’s going to do – splash, kick, tiger arms, monkey monkey, etc.  I was feeling pretty positive, we haven’t been this excited for a while, and certainly not since Australia, maybe this would be a good week!

We got to the pool and the excitement continued.  He chatted away about the babies in the pool, wanted to get in, pretended to kick.  And then the babies got out, and we could get in.  All was going well, he sat on the side and kicked his legs with a big smile on his face.  Then I encouraged him into the pool and he crumpled.  I got him in the pool and he held on to the bar with the strength of a body builder…he did not want to move from that spot.  Sone reassurance from me and some forceful hand removal and we were off…what happened to the pre-lesson excitement?!

During the warm up he actually dared to smile and even participated a little, but every time we stopped he would cling to me like a limpet and get upset.  I generally don’t stand for this and just encourage/use gentle force to get him involved.  He hated the woggle…he loved the woggle; he loved the sinker…he hated the sinker; he loved the mat…he loved the mat, ooooh, the mat! We have a winner….oh no, run across it?! We hate the mat! 

And so the lesson continues in a cycle of love and loath.  It’s exhausting!!  But the “love” part seems to just tip the scales so we continue the weekly visit in the hope that one day he will love the whole experience.

The Day Dreaming Mummy
~♡~

Rain, Rain, and More Rain…

Rain, Rain, and More Rain…

That’s how the forecast looks from now until 10pm tomorrow night.  And not just a bit of drizzle but complete downpour coupled with wind so strong it stopped me in my tracks with the buggy earlier.

I don’t mind staying in and snuggling down for the afternoon but Little Bear most definately will!  I’m hoping he has a long nap which will reduce the length of our afternoon…I anticipate reading a lot of books and doing a lot of colouring in the next few hours which, so long as he is happy, should be okay.  But these afternoons do tend to drag as he will invariably want to go out, and that just won’t be possible.

Ideally this would be an afternoon for crafts, painting and sticking, but Little Bear broke it to me last week that he doesn’t like glue so that’s now off the cards.  Watch a film?  So long as it’s only 10 minutes long.  Snuggle under a blanket?  You must be kidding!!

Oh well, I’m sure those dreamt of days will be here soon.  Meanwhile, I’ll get ready to read “Freddie and the Fairy” on a loop for the next 3 hours…

The Day Dreaming Mummy
~♡~

Little Bear’s Australian Adventures…part 3

Little Bear’s Australian Adventures…part 3

This morning we went to visit 2 playgroups, and at the second one Little Bear found his voice and started telling the lady about kangaroos and koalas…and sharrrrrrks!!!!  Wildlife was a big part of Australia for him and is something he talks about quite a lot.

On our second day we fed wallabies and kangaroos.  The best way is to put the food in the palm of your hand and hold it out.  Clearly Little Bear was not going for this option…he opted for single seeds at a time.  How he didn’t lose a finger is beyond me.  On the same day we also stroked and held a koala.  He waited patiently in the queue and when it was our turn he was so gentle.  It was amazing!  Before going he had been so excited about seeing these two animals and it clearly lived up to his expectations, it was a perfect moment each time he smiled and talked about what he was doing.

We also had a mummy and baby koala in the tree outside the house, and every morning he would look for them.  We showed him lots of spiders, which he loved, a Christmas beetle, and lizards. He saw parrots, dolphins, fish, and crabs.  For him it was heaven!

But perhaps topping all of those…what could it be?! The cats!! And did the cats like him? Absolutely not!!

Every morning he would check to see if they had had breakfast, and if they were in the middle of it then they soon scarpered when they heard him.  He searched the garden for them, then sat watching them as they say watching him.  And now we’re home he still asks about them.  The other day he wanted to buy them food in the shop and yesterday he asked a cat if they had had breakfast yet…this cat also ran away, Little Bear obviously gives off a bad vibe to cats.

My own stand out experience with the wildlife was slightly less joyful than any of his.  One night, he woke up and so I went to resettle him.  It was windy and the curtains kept blowing and something metal was being blown about outside.  Add to that a couple of cats and possum having a midnight party and it was a cacophony of unfamiliar sounds!  When the wind blew something off the window sill that was enough for me, I scooped up Little Bear and carried him back to my bed. 

Then all went quiet.

Then a noise through the monitor.  A low, raspy, breathing.  I don’t know what I thought it was but I knew I did not want to look at the monitor screen…my irrational middle of the night brain expected a face to be staring back at me.  So I turned it off and then slept fitfully for the rest of the night.

Come morning I was back in sensible mode and knew it was just the possum and the cats but even now, over a month later, it still gives me goosebumps thinking about that noise!  Such a brave mummy!

The Day Dreaming Mummy
~♡~

The Childcare Conundrum

The Childcare Conundrum

Before having Little Bear I was keen to go back to work after 6 months, preferably 3 days a week but I wasn’t ruling out full time.  But then he arrived.  That changed everything!!

I work/ed in childcare and I think that may have been part of the problem.  I have seen first hand how brilliant the staff and activities are, but I’ve also seen the other side – potentially high staff turnover, staffing inconsistencies, the time spent on paperwork…is that really want I want for him?  Turns out it wasn’t, and I didn’t return to work.

Now his second birthday is looming (well, in May) and I’m starting to readdress the issue.  I don’t doubt that we have a great time together, mostly, I just think he is getting to the point where he needs something to help his confidence and independence blossom…and let’s not pretend this isn’t a little bit about time for me too!

I’m still not convinced nursery is the way to go for us, I don’t need the hours it offers and I don’t need a setting that will see him from birth to school – we’re already halfway through that journey (*sniff* pass me a tissue).  A nanny isn’t an option, and a childminder doesn’t appeal either.  However, I think a playgroup may be the answer for us.

Reduced hours and fees compared to a nursery but still Ofsted registered, still following EYFS, still time away from me…sounds perfect!  I’ve booked to view a couple next week, fingers crossed I will like one of them and can book him in before I change my mind.  Where did my baby go?!

The Day Dreaming Mummy
~♡~

Wintery Walk

Wintery Walk

So this afternoon we set out, wrapped up in hats, gloves, and scarves for a lovely wintery walk and play in the sunshine.  What could be better than walking in the winter sunshine with your wonderful toddler, talking about all the things you can see?  Probably not a lot, but this wasn’t exactly how my experience panned out.

To start with, I could only find one glove so ditched the idea, preferring cold hands to looking a bit odd…big mistake!  We did then have quite a nice walk, apart from the low winter sun being a “bit bright” for Little Bear who then wanted his sunglasses which I didn’t have.  Then we got to the park and we had to play football, this was actually quite fun and we kept quite warm chasing the ball.  When we went into the playground Little Bear discarded his hat and gloves in favour of frostbite.  After losing his wellies in the tunnel and getting covered in mud on the slide we went back to football.

By now I was quite cold and the sun was starting to set.  Little Bear didn’t seem to notice though.  He carried on running around until he tripped over his own foot and landed face first on the floor…this resulted in a few tears and a lot of mud up the nose!

I took this as our cue to leave.

Back home, the hallway I had swept at lunch was once again covered in mud and our fingers were brittle enough to snap!

It wasn’t quite the relaxing, wintery walk I had imagined…it was much more fun!!

The Day Dreaming Mummy
~♡~

Football!!!!!

Football!!!!!

So it seems Little Bear is destined to be like the majority of the male population…he’s developing a very keen interest in football (or soccer depending on where in the world you are).

When we were in Australia he was given a football and he amazed us all with how hard he could kick it.  And he generally did so with quite a bit of accuracy…the bush being the favourite target resulting in cries of “In the booooooosh!!!”, as he summoned someone to retrieve it for him!  Needless to say it was rarely mummy who retrieved and on our last day I think I left it in the “booooosh”, I wonder if it’s out yet?!

On Boxing Day we took him to his first match.  I wasn’t expecting a great attention span and was planning on having to spend a lot of time walking around outside with him, but, as usual, he surprised me and sat perfectly throughout the game.  He was watching, asking questions, and cheering.  He learnt about red cards – “man get off, say sorry”, he learnt who the goalkeeper was, and all about throw ins and corners!!

Yesterday he sat with grandad and watched a good chunk of football on the television.  Again, he looked really focused and talked about what he could see.

He loves kicking a ball! He puts his foot on top of the ball and says “wobble wobble”!  He runs round the house shouting “Gooooooaaaaaaal!!!!!!”

We had planned on sending him to Rugby Tots once he turned 2 but there isn’t one in the area anymore.  I think it’s a sign,  it’s left us with no option other than football.

In my head I had another few years before he began to show a real interest, but it turns out that, in this case, boys will be boys at the earliest opportunity…Little Kickers, sign us up!

The Day Dreaming Mummy
~♡~