Friday, 31 October 2008

Trick or treat

I've never been a big fan of Halloween, always feeling it was something best left to the Americans. Trick and treaters here always seemed to be scary teenagers rather than cute children.

While making Isobel's costume, yes I know it was no work of art, but at least I made it, I began to think about Halloween as an excuse to party and to be quite scary, so maybe, just maybe I could adopt it.

The costume was for a Halloween party at nursery, she was the only one with a home made costume - have I scarred her for life (in which case she may as well get used to it), or isn't that just half the fun?

In the meantime, I'll sit here eating the chocolates I bought for trick and treaters; they never do magic tricks for me so why should I treat them.

Happy Halloween

Tuesday, 28 October 2008

If there is such a thing

I think my baby is crawling. Well, atleast is on the verge of it. Is
that pre-crawling.

I mean she doesn't shoot across the room faster than a speeding bullet
and she still uses rolling to cover long distances ( when you are
nearly eight months old I imagine the length of the sitting room
counts as long).

But, she is doing that hand-over-hand-stretching-while-pushing-with-
knee action that enables her to reach the previously unreachable.

As I encourage her, the voice in my head is shouting "WTF are you
doing? Are you craazy? Do you want your baby to be MORE mobile? Do you
want the world to be able to judge the cleanliness of your floors by
the state of your little girls knees?"

But, I just keep moving the toys a little further away and shouting "

(So, shoes off as you come in from now on, please.)

Sent from my iPhone

Monday, 27 October 2008

Sunday continues

Our Sundays are very much family days, and, I must say, I really, really do look forward to them. (Yes, I think it's a miracle PD and I still really look forward to seeing each other too).

This Sunday PD cooked a roast (yes I did say PD cooked, he's actually quite good but being a perfectionist he doesn't do it too often ), and fairy godfather came to lunch, Isobel was clearly excited.

I suppose Isobel playing on the kitchen floor while PD and I cooked together, nearly fulfilled one of my romantic-notion imagages.
Oh, and fairy godfather bought the traditional drive-the-parents-barmy-noisy-present. It took Isobel a while to figure out the rolling-singing-crawling mirror, but she did, including a very close impression of the required crawling - thanks Gary, I think.

(Doesn't every girl need a light up mirror, well until she reaches a certain age and then the less light the better - or is that just me!)

I like driving in my car, it's not quite a Jaguar

I love that we are at the cardboard box phase, imagination here we come!
(Oh, this is Sunday part one)

Saturday, 25 October 2008

An interesting thought

I've just read this and thought it worth sharing:

'the real problem is that it is so close we can't see it, just as the
eye doesn't see it's own lashes.'

I have just spent a few moments of my life testing it, and it's true
they can't.

Oh, the quote is about happiness.

Sent from my iPhone

Far better to celebrate a birthday

Last night I went out in London town for the first time since Isobel was born - no I can't believe it either.

I even wore these beautiful high, high heels. (My feet have never been so pleased to see my converse as they were this morning - I guess I'm out of practise)

Me and my shoes went to the gorgeous, gorgeous Buddha Bar under the guise of continuing to celebrate my birthday with the people who couldn't make it before. (Yes, I do LOVE birthdays, and October is a good one for them: mine, my mummy's and well, you'll see.)

I had a great time, but when midnight came and I had to go, I just wanted to go clubbing. But the thought of my 6:30 am wake up call drove me homeward on that last train.

I do I have a confession though, it really was a ruse; the real birthday boy couldn't organise his own party, so we toasted him anyway. I'd much rather celebrate James' birthday than remember his leaving.

Another secret I'll share with you is that white sambucca is indeed marvellous medicine - no hangover!

Thursday, 23 October 2008

Isobel's first piece of art

I've just had this canvas made for Isobel. I hope she loves it as much
as I do.

A fine line

As far as I can tell there is a very fine line between 'good' and 'bad' parenting, and even that is subjective.

For example is it good that I don't leave my child unattended while I go to the loo, or bad that I let her play with my toes while I have to sit down for a moment or two?

Isobel's mobile still hangs over my bed, am I improving her hand eye co-ordination or just giving myself an excuse to lounge around in bed, in my nightie for an extra 15 minutes?

When I put a grumpy little Isobel to bed early am I doing what's best for her or just giving up the struggle to find something to entertain her?

By wanting to work part-time am I really financially compromising Isobel's standard of living, or improving her life by giving her more of me?

Hey ho, to be honest I don't know why I'm asking, I'm not planning on changing anything!

Wednesday, 22 October 2008

Just to set your mind at rest...

I know my last couple of posts have been a bit arb to say the least (some would argue this whole blog is arb, but it's mine, so I won't), the posts have just been to assure you we are still here.

I've been suffering from a to-write-or-not-to-write dilemma. It's not that I don't enjoy this blog, I really do; it's just that I'm not sure WHAT to write about and what NOT to write about.

Anyway, I guess that's my issue not yours.

So, we haven't fallen into the abyss, nor absconded to some nirvana and left you all behind.

Mind you we have had a Nirvana cover moment: Isobel has been to Little Dippers, and seeing her swim under water with her eyes open has to be one of the greatest things I've seen. (No, we don't have pictures, a few pervy people mean that the school, where the class was held, forbids photography.)

Wednesday, 15 October 2008

Who knew...

broccoli could be this much fun...

Tuesday, 14 October 2008

Last weeks poorly little girl

It's kind of sweet when your daughter just wants to live on your lap.

Everyone needs a mummy cuddle, when they are poorly sick.


Rebecca made me it.

1. How long have you been a Mum? Seven Months, two weeks and three days - but I sometimes struggle to remember a me when I wasn't.

2. How many children call you Mummy? One

3. Girl? Boy? or both?: An angel of a baby girl.

4. Did you know what you were having? Yes, the pregnancy itself was enough of a surprise for us! I didn't think I minded ether way, but I was very excited when i found out she was a girl.

5. How old were you when you became a Mum? 35

6. How long were you in labor? Less than a working day: waters broke at 9am, contractions started at 10am, baby born after 3 short pushes at 5pm. Sounds easier than it was, but it wasn't as hard as I thought. Yes, it hurt; yes I asked for drugs; no I didn't quite get them.

7. What's your favorite thing about being a Mum? Being loved unconditionally even when your hair is wrapped in a towel. And, knowing that I have bought a beautiful person into the world.

8. What's your least favorite thing? Not really sure. Being a single one perhaps?

9. Do you want more kids? I think it's unlikely now, I'm not sure if actually do either. I have loved every little stage of Isobel's life so far, but could I give another as much love and attention?

10. Do you plan on having more soon? Nope

11. How many times have you been pee'd on? Not that often actually - yet.

12. Barfed on? A month ago I would have said once, Isobel didn't really even sick up a little bit, but for some reason this permanent cold we have now has caused projectile vomiting (think lots of washing) I think the record is three times in a day or 6 times in a week. Ah ha! I think I have found my least favourite thing - being sicked on.

13. Is your child named after anyone? No in fact she is deliberately NOT named after anyone!

14. How did you come up with their name? By not talking to anyone about it so it couldn't be their dead dog's or middle name. A long list whittled down, and, in the end, by letting PD choose (he didn't get much say over anything else).

15. When your child gets in trouble, who is the bad guy? Bit young for getting into trouble - as I said an angel SO FAR. But I know it will be me, because there is only me.

16. What is the longest you have been away from your children? Eight hours and I ran to get her at the end of it.

17. Bedtime routine? Roll around naked on the bath mat (Isobel, not me), bath, bottle, cuddles, rolling around on Isobel's bed and stories - big Slinky Malinky and Hairy Maclary fan - I read the story to Isobel and then Isobel reads it to me; then into her cot, saying good night to the light on the way if PD is around, lights out; Isobel chats to her friends and falls asleep.

18. Are your toes painted? ALWAYS, even nine months pregnant, and always red. 1950s siren red - something about me is vampy!

19. Last movie you saw in the theatre? Gosh, so long ago I can't remember, might have been, the somewhat disappointing, Golden Compass. I kept meaning to go to baby scream screening but the sun would shine and it seemed a waste.

20. One thing you will not give up just because you're a mum? Living. Oh, my MINI!

21. One thing you did give up now that you're a mum: Lie-ins. Well, unless my pseudo lie-in on a Sunday counts: I stay in pjs and go back to bed when Isobel goes down for her morning sleep - it doesn't really count, does it? No,not at all.

22. Best Mum perk: Finding out exactly how much you can love someone. All the way to the moon and back doesn't even begin to describe it.

23. Snack, you sneak bites from your child? You cannot beat roast chicken dinner all mashed up so you don't have to battle to get a little bit of everything on your fork.

24. When the kid is napping, you are: meditating (on a good day), crying(on a bad one).

25. Where is your child(ren) now? Sleeping upside down in her cot, with Granddad teddy's foot in her hand.

26. Favorite place to buy maternity clothes? Topshop, but French Connection do lots of empire lines so I got away with wearing their size 12 all the way through.

27. If I could do it over… it's hard to say what I'd change. Maybe doubt myself a little less, fret about PD a lot less and therefore enjoy it EVEN more.

28. Did it turn out the way you expected? With Isobel yes; as I expected yes; as I hoped, no. But, hey ho, I never for a second doubted how much I would love her and I never, even for a minute, was unhappy about having her.

The mummies I know who blog have been tagged, so perhaps I'll tag you mummies I don't know.

Monday, 13 October 2008

Feeling a little playful

Most girls, especially single girls, will confess to having a toy in
their bedroom. A little something requiring batteries perhaps?

These days the toys in my bedroom require BIG batteries and do,
indeed, make my bed a playful place.

Just not that kind of playful...

It's not a black eye. Honest.

It is great being told you are doing a good job as a mum, it means a
lot that people think enough to say so.

But nothing silences (at least temporarily) the doubting Thomas in
your head like being told so by a pro.

Isobel has an eye infection which I've been treating with salty boiled
water. As good as antibiotic eye drops apparently. A good job done
according to Dr B.

Saturday, 11 October 2008

Isobel and I have joined the library. Little girl has even taken out
her first library book.

I'm thinking this will be the perfect rainy Tuesday activity.

Thursday, 9 October 2008

Don't you just love it

PD bought it for me for my birthday.

As I said before, he may get many things wrong, but, he also gets somethings very right.

Thank you for being you, PD, and for being a great shopper. xx

I thought, well you know

I thought Isobel had forgotten; I thought she didn't care.

No present, no flowers and not even a card.

I mean, I know presence is presents but....

And then, today when I picked her up from nursery she had made me this.

Wednesday, 8 October 2008

Happy birthday to me continued...

It has to be said that as birthdays go this hasn't been my favourite,
but it wasn't without a high point.

Little can beat drinking champagne out of a paper cup while pushing a
smiling little girl on a swing. Especially if that little girl is your

Thank you Grace, and thank you Isobel. xx

Happy birthday to me

I have decided to start my birthday again, right here and right now.

Tuesday, 7 October 2008

Hippie chick me?

I have lost my composure of late. Contentment? - I'm surprised I even remember that such a word exists let alone how to spell it.

I guess it's all pretty natural when your whole life feels either up in the air or smashing loudly around your feet.

In an attempt to regain some kind of perspective, and to be the chilled out mum I want to be, I'm trying to get back into my meditation, but blimey it's tough. 'Chattering mind', my mind doesn't chatter it shouts noisily like the crowd at an international rugby match; I really wish couldn't hear myself think.

As I seem unable to meditate on my own - I literally fall off the damn stool when trying to - I have bought a guided meditation CD and just spent a blissful half an hour listening to it.

I chose to do the Metta Bhavana, the development of loving kindness. Here's kind of how it goes, it focuses on giving loving kindness to 4 people: yourself, a good friend, someone you are indifferent to and someone you have difficulty with.


May I be well;
May I be happy;
May I be free from struggle.

May you be well;
May you be happy;
May you be free from struggle.

May everyone be well;
May everyone be happy;
May everyone be free from struggle.

So, I wish you all WELL!

(If I start to smell funny and refuse to wear leather shoes (oh no, not the shoes), please wake me from my blissful state.)

Sunday, 5 October 2008

Little and littler

We had a lovely lunch today because we were visited by the Von Quenets.

We gave them champagne, roast pork (with extra crackling, of course) and tarte tartin; they gave us the joy of holding their darling little Gen, Genevieve.

Both PD and I agreed - surely Isobel was never, ever that small. Was she?
(Actually, she was a little smaller but that just seems impossible now)

Saturday, 4 October 2008

You give me fever

After only a slightly grumpy start to the day, at around midday, a crying Isobel spiked a temperature of 39.1 or over 100 in other money.


I gave her Calpol - she threw it up. I gave her another 2.5ml and stripped her down to her nappy. Put her in her cot for a nap.

30 minutes later she STILL hadn't got to sleep and her temperature had RISEN to 39.5.

Double F*CK.

I thought, okay, Nurofen. But that little bit of self-doubt crept in. Is this the kind of temperature that warrants a visit to the walk in clinic at the West Mid Hospital? Should I give Nurofen so close to Calpol? I've done all the right things, I think?

So, I rang NHS Direct, just for reassurance.

After telling me that her temperature may go up to 40, and she may convulse but this doesn't mean brain damage, I was told I was doing the right things.


Anyway, testament to the magic of Mummy's lap (and maybe the power of Calpol and Nurofen) by 4pm her temperature was back down to 36.6.

She has had a double portion of cauliflower cheese and a third of a banana, splashed in the bath, and is now in bed.

Me? I'm cream crackered and relying on the restorative powers of Strictly and a glass of wine.

Friday, 3 October 2008

Whole lot of love

Today is just an ordinary day. A day in which I am doing ordinary things.

But three years ago this wasn't an ordinary day, it was quite simply the most devastating day of my life: the day I lost the boy I loved, the boy who loved me, the day I lost him and our future together.

But, at this time when I've been left feeling particularly unlovable, I'm choosing not to be sad but to remember that love, to wrap myself in it like a big comforting blanket and cry comforting tears, the tears of fondness. Tears that remind me I was once loved and may be loved again.

I am also trying to regain the gift of perspective that that day taught me. It was a gift that may not have been tied in bow but was bestowed so beautifully that it shouldn't be allowed to be sullied by others. The perspective that life is to be lived and to be loved.

So, from here on in it's time to focus on loving and being happy. If you spend your life looking for either you will never find it, but just by being you can allow it.

This picture was taken on 3rd of September; yes three years and one month ago.


Some people go to the gym to feel and be fitter.

Some go to be able to drink wine and eat cake while still having a
body worthy of the ministrations of a toyboy.

Others because they are giving away free copies of Grazia magazine.

Sent from my iPhone

Thursday, 2 October 2008

So, where was I

Oh yes, being a Mum.

When Isobel isn't with me, when she is at school nursery it's still odd to think I'm a mummy; when Isobel is with me it's difficult to think she ever wasn't. One day I'll get used to it.

It's quite funny, Isobel is such a little person now that it is hard to remember her being a tiny baby who simply feeds, sleeps and looks pretty - not neccessarily in that order.

Now she is a little girl who figures things out and bangs things together, doesn't need to crawl because she has rolling down to a fine art; and can hold herself up with one hand.

In the mean time Isobel's new love of pillows (the picture I haven't managed to take - she sees the camera and poses!) has taught me what being a mum is about: kisses and approval. She rolls on the pillow, clearly giving it love and then she rolls back to check I'm still there and to collect a kiss.

As I've said before, being a Mum isn't really that tough.

Wednesday, 1 October 2008

I haven't forgotten

That my daughter is seven months old today.

I haven't forgotton that I've been a full-time mum for seven months
although it feels longer.

I just haven't found the words to describe the things I wanted to
describe and I haven't managed to get the pictures either.

So, I guess I'll be turning in this particular piece of home work late.

Sent from my iPhone

Note to self

I must stop making baby meals.

At this rate Isobel will still be eating purée when she is 17.

Sent from my iPhone