ailbhe: (Default)
Or you know, let's not. This is a whinge post.

The day got off to a slow start, mainly due to Linnea being as cooperative as a cranky rock, so we didn't have time for lunch before we left the house AND we arrived in town too late to see the pancake race. The staff in M&S messed up checking out our sandwiches (which were at the top end of my preferred budget before the mess-up, so I made them fix it). We got to John Lewis and Linnea was incredibly annoying while we were trying to fit her for new shoes. And then she started running away inside the shop, and refusing to wash her hands, and things. She got a final warning after we went to the cafe and we went and chose things for them to eat, and the girls sat at a table to wait while I paid, and I saw someone from a nearby table go to speak to them, and looked, and Linnea was spreading salt all over the table.

And she'd had her final warning, so that was that, we left.

The woman who spoke to her (who was concerned that she'd get salt in her eyes) apologised a lot but I didn't have time or peace to handle her - I just repeated "It's not your fault, it's hers, she was warned," and chased after Linnea, who had screamed and run away crying.

I had really, really, really wanted that cup of tea. But the deliberate misbehaviour had been escalating all day.

So then we had to walk home because she was too loud and cranky to bring on a bus, and it took until we actually reached the end of her street for her to feel like apologising and asking for my apology (she apologises for being naughty, I apologise for being very cross, and then we're friends). In the interim she ran away, sat still and screamed, shouted "You're the naughty one! You hafta do what I say!" and so on.

I really, really wanted that cup of tea.

At one point she picked up a stick from a tree in the graveyard and charged at me with it. And she twice ran away around corners; I had to drop my handbag so that I could pick Emer up and chase after her. I'm luck to have arrived home with my wallet and my keys.

I really wanted that cup of tea.

She tried to persuade me that because she said sorry we could go back again. It almost worked, except that mid-argument she ran away around a corner. In a busy town centre. While I had my hands full. That's just completely not allowed.

I want that cup of tea. I think I'll have it now.

She's much nicer now.
ailbhe: (Default)
We have an invitation to go play at someone else's house today, and I want to go, and Linnea wants to go, but Emer is asleep and Linnea won't get dressed. We're pretty much too late to go now - yes, I have called to say so - and in about twenty minutes Linnea will come downstairs, still without her shoes and socks on, and want to know why it's too late to go, and she'll cry and wake Emer up, and bah.

If Linnea was being cooperative rather than wanting to have her cake and eat it too, I could put a sleeping Emer on my back and walk us all round the corner. But she's not.

And it will, later, be All My Fault.

Again.

... that's my job.
ailbhe: (Default)
But it's harder, truly, to be the lax one. Poor ole Rob ended up winding Linnea up so much she cried for over an hour, eventually working herself up into such hysterics that we had to get her out of the room so that Emer could sleep.

He has now set himself alarms so that he doesn't miss her bedtime any more. She can read the clock now.

This stuff is dead easy for me. I say (for example) "I know it's not eight o'clock, it's after eight o'clock, quick, now, this minute, go," and I close my ears and harden my heart and so we go.

But Rob feels mean, doing that, and Negotiations Ensue.

Well, perhaps they are more like Peace Talks. No-one actually alters their stated position, and no-one moved forward, and the less powerful parties escalate the levels of passion and violence... Very like peace talks, I think.
ailbhe: (Default)
The kids are going back in their pyjamas, the telly is going on, and I've ordered pizza. There has to be a way to salvage today.
ailbhe: (Default)
Today in a quiet suburban street in Reading, Berks, a young-mother-of-two who cannot be identified did not hurt her children. "She always seemed so normal," said a neighbour, "I mean, they were a lovely family."

Neighbours heard the children shrieking with laughter but they did not see the wardrobe being emptied or the laundry basket being tipped up so that clean and dirty laundry were mixed together. "You just can't see what goes on behind closed doors," said Emma, 58, from number 73. It has also been reported that although at least one of the children knew what she was doing was wrong, the mother (age 30) did not beat her, or throw her out the window.

Other mothers from the toddler group the children regularly attended until a few months ago said "It's not normal. Everyone loses their lid sometimes."

Reports that the children were not locked in a cellar full of rats are also being investigated.

This is crossposted. Also, I am having a really horrible day and I find that what I most want is to UTTERLY BREAK LINNEA'S SPIRIT so that she is demure and obedient from here on in. Somebody, stop me.
ailbhe: (baby)
Accumulate all the points you can. Be liberal when awarding your own points, but deny other mothers all the points you can get. I have no idea whether fathers also do this points thing - circumstantial evidence strongly suggests not.

Baby rolls over:
At birth: 3 points
Younger than anyone else in your mommy-group: 5 points
At exactly the time your parenting book claims it ought to: 3 points
Later than those: -3 points
Late enough that the paediatrician gets interested: +5 points
Late enough that it's a sign of a really rare condition: +5 points

Baby crawls:
At birth: 3 points
Younger than anyone else in your mommy-group: 5 points
At exactly the time your parenting book claims it ought to: 3 points
Later than those: -3 points
Late enough that the paediatrician gets interested: +5 points
Late enough that it's a sign of a really rare condition: +5 points
Not at all: +10 points
Not at all because s/he's dyslexic: +15 points
In an "unusual" way (hands and feet, bum-shuffling, upside-down, only when wearing full diving gear including oxygen): 4 points

Baby cruises:
It's not cruising, it's walking, it's just that s/he's holding on: 15 points
Only when holding an adults hands so that the adult develops serious back problems: 5 points
Really early: 1 point
Really late: 1 point
Exactly when the book says it should: 1 point

Baby walks:
Before 6 months: 25 points (and a tranquiliser gun)
Before 9 months: 15 points
Before 12 months: 10 points
Bang on 12 months: 5 points
Between 12-24 months: 1 point

Baby talks:
Parents can understand baby before one year: 1 point
Grandparents can understand baby before one year: 5 points
Baby's university lecturers can understand baby before one year: 10 points
Not until really really late but has first complex compound sentence instead of first word: 5 points

Baby grows teeth:
20 points, as teeth appear, unless born with teeth, in which case, add an extra 4 points

Baby potty-trains:
Before 6 months: 200 points for maternal dedication and self-delusion. It's mother-training, not baby-training at that stage.
Before 9 months: 100 points
Before 12 points: 50 months
Before its peers: 5 points
Never: -30 points

Baby learns to swim:
From birth, but what's the point, since babies are so top-heavy their heads won't stay above water? 0 points.
ailbhe: (playing in the grass)
A normal, health c-section is much riskier for mother and baby than a normal, healthy vaginal delivery.

Breastmilk is nutritionally superior to formula milk.

It's still not spelled "dialate".

Babies do not sleep 8 hours at a stretch at night at 3 weeks. You can't make it. It's cruel to try.

Some things are not "parental choice" issues, like feeding a newborn skim-milk from a cow because you don't want it to get too fat.

Some things really are "parental choice" issues, like which sets of mutually contradictory evidence-based advice one follows about pacifier use, cosleeping, etc.

If one child is reading quietly upstairs and the other is hiccupping contentedly in her pram, it's time to make tea and read "The Keeper of the Bees". Self-massage of sling-abused shoulders optional.
ailbhe: (Default)
Emer woke from a long, leisurely nap just as the beans were almost done (beans for Linnea's lunch; she had about half a 200g tin; 100g contains 0.9g of salt. Dear gods) and the toast had popped. And she needed an immediate nappy change.

I can see that for the next year I will eat all my meals except dinner with a baby on my lap.

Nursing.

And scratching.

Anyway, she's just nodded off, after a solid 90 minutes - maybe more - of awake alert time. I had another go with the hugabub but I'm wearing dungarees which aren't the best for experimenting with it. I'll try the ring sling when she next wakes.

She's my second baby. That's why she's sleeping slumped in the bouncy chair while the toddler watches tv and bounces on an armchair. I'm not sure how long TV will last today; after this (so far, she's watched 7 minutes of Something Special) there's 50 minutes of Big Cook Little Cook, which is loathesome. However, we might have visitors, which would be good.

I really need to clear the dining table and tidy the library. My incision - one of my internal incisions, that is - aches. I'm tired. Linnea did a stinky poo and Emer did a milky poo (explosive, and full of curds) and I cleaned them both up and I'm finding it hard to eat enough.

I wonder how long Emer will sleep for this time.

Home Alone

Sep. 4th, 2006 09:09 am
ailbhe: (Default)
It's my first day home alone. Rob left (late!) 20 minutes ago. I can't believe the godawful state the house is in. How is it that it's fine when my mother is here, fine when I'm well, but 48 hours after my mother leaves and while I'm sub-par the kitchen is almost uninhabitable, the floors are filthy, and even the kitchen bins are overflowing? There isn't even anything here for our lunch, as far as I know.

Augh! Despair!

Also, I can't quite figure out how to tote Emer about in the Peapod hold in the hugabub. I think I'm doing it too loose. That, or I'm just too damn short. None of the women in the video seemed to be carrying babies that took up as much of their torso as Emer does of mine. I know this was a problem with Linnea until she learned to hold her head up. Please, this baby is tiny. Let me be able to learn this one. She keeps sagging down to the horizontal.
ailbhe: (trike)
Friday morning, Rob left the house at 8:30, leaving Linnea, Emer, me, and my mother. Linnea was fed and dressed, which was fabulous. My mother was drugged out on antihistamines and unrousable. I got up, fed Emer again again, put her in the hugabub (badly!), and made tea and had breakfast. Then Linnea and I emptied the dishwasher, I cleared the table, filled the dishwasher, sorted some laundry, brushed our teeth (while carrying Emer!), and sat down in the library, where I fed Emer again and read livejournal, and Linnea read one of her books.

Mum got up at 9:30 and came downstairs. "Wow, it all looks so peaceful!" she said.

I felt terribly accomplished. Mind you, the major tidy-up of the two downstairs rooms had been done by Rob the night before, but you couldn't tell by looking that a toddler had been up and about all morning, just the same. Nor that three people had had breakfast.




Today we got up and out the door by 8:10, took Mum to the train station to get her bus to the airport, bought tea and bananas so that Mum and I wouldn't faint (Linnea stole my banana), waved Mum goodbye, went and found breakfast in one of the few cafes open before 9 am on a Saturday, bought a pack of pipecleaners as a birthday-girl's-brother present for the party in the afternoon (tobacconists are open early, it seems), ate, found a charity shop opening at 9, bought a couple of gift bags and a birthday card, and incidentally a set of small ice-lolly makers, and went to WH Smiths to find a couple of books for the birthday girl for the party, and then went to Mothercare to have the assistant look at my buggy-cum-pram and tell me why it was acting all funny now we've turned it into a pram (we've lost the manual; my gods, my buggy comes with a manual!), and then went to the Farmer's Market, where I got a jug I've sort of had ordered since June, and a cute, dinky, dainty, adorable teeny tiny teaset suitable for children, large dolls, or covetous adults with a thing for handmade pottery. I couldn't help it. It was so cute I almost exploded on sight.

And then we went home for lunch.

After lunch, Rob and Linnea had a bath, and we all four set off on the trike for the party. It was a pretty stiff cycle - there was wind, and drizzle, and a non-trivial hill, and we'd never gone that way before. Several times I asked Rob whether I should get out and walk; he was huffing a bit. But I think he enjoyed it really, and he gets a bit of a kick out of pedalling his whole family around. Emer's carseat just fits - we've emailed the retailer to ask if there are any tips on transporting an infant in one, like a special small carseat that would fit better - and Linnea and one adult still fit ok. It's even fairly comfy, though carrying shopping is out of the question; Rob had to take the nappy kit on his back.

At the party Linnea sought the birthday girl out and gave her her presents (the one-year-old handed them on to Is, who gave them back to Linnea, but they all had fun and the presents were indeed left at the birthday girl's home when everyone went away again and that's what counts) and talked to a few people. I was too tired (can't imagine why) to be very sociable but we got there.

18 days after a c-section, attending a toddler party is about all I'm asking of myself. Being its life and soul costs extra.

Then we came back home late enough that we stopped for dinner at Chilis, where I realised I have never seen a fat or even plump member of staff, which is a bit weird when I think of the shapes I see walking around town. Then we went to Boots to buy cotton wool, and Linnea pushed a tiny trolley with a huge flag, and took things off the shelves and pushed them to the till and unloaded the trolley. It was gorgeous.

And then home, milk, bed.

And then we watched the hugabub howto video again, and learned where we've been going wrong with the newborn carry ("peapod"), and Rob practised it but dipped the hugabub in the bowl of clean water we keep for nappy changes, by accident. So he used the ring sling for the first time ever instead.

And here we are. I need a picture of all four of us lined up with the trike, now.

The four of us.

Oh my god. What have we done?!
ailbhe: (working)
I have two blogs - I think they're blogs - in their infancy, which may end up nothing or may be fascinating mines for semi-precious stones of wisdom. No idea.

[livejournal.com profile] whoteacheswhom and [livejournal.com profile] mamahastwo are about home education and tandem feeding.

(While I'm plugging syndicated feeds, I rather like [livejournal.com profile] mydadsacommunis even though the title was too long for an lj username).
ailbhe: (bigbed)
I went to bed about 11 last night, got to sleep about 12:30. Tadpole is lively. Then Linnea woke shortly after six. So we were all up earlier than we'd like. However, it was cooler than last week at breaskfast time, which was a relief.

About 9:30 it became obvious that Linnea was exhausted, and we went to bed in my room. In the end we got about an hour's sleep from 10-11. I feel fabulous and Linnea is transformed.

She enjoyed her weekend away. Didn't miss me a bit, which means we must be doing something right, and was pleased to see me when she got back, but not as pleased as she was to see the trike. Her sentences are clearer than they were on Friday - she's grown some more grammar. And on Friday we were having salad, and she said "I can't eat the rice."

"It's not rice, it's couscous."

"I can't eat the couscous eeether."

I thought that was impressive, but I'm not sure why. I think it was the use of "either" but I have no idea what that development represents. Anyway, she has also started answering "How are you?" with "My's fine," which is cute and useful, because a huge number of adults randomly ask toddlers the social non-question "How are you?" and I've seen Linnea and other toddlers hopelessly confused by it. I'm sure I've asked it myself, inflicting needless bewilderment on toddlers talking to me on the phone or whatever.

On Friday we did gluing and sellotaping with boxes and lollipop sticks. She's not keen on sellotape; it's more difficult to use than glue, though it does produce more instant results. She has expressed some interest in making things for the baby, or for Dave, but never follows through :)

Today I think we mainly need to assemble all the library books she took out the other week and get the bus to the library. I can't wait until I can walk again. By the end of the day, seperating my knees enough to climb the stairs hurts like bejeepers (what useful swearwords I know when I try!) and lying down doesn't help much. "Mammy take a baby out a you tummy now!" as Nea says.
ailbhe: (Default)

  1. Temperatures are much, much lower - 25C in the coolest room in the house.

  2. Postman arrived before I had any trousers on, but luckily I had brushed my hair and was wearing a tshirt, so I was able to put on trousers from the laundry basket and look dressed. Heavily pregnant and crumpled, but dressed.

  3. Postman brought Tadpole's Irish passport forms, so we can take it to the wedding in September, and a proof copy of when baby runs

  4. Rob has had it confirmed that he will get a full two weeks' paternity leave. We were worried about that.

  5. Linnea and I have already started eating jelly to cool down. I think it's a lot more humid today. We were all but promised thunderstorms last night and didn't get them.

ailbhe: (cake)
So my NCT social event is over, and two women came, one with an external baby and one with an internal baby. They were lovely, if a bit more interested in adult-led weaning than I am, and stayed for about an hour, and it was fine. Now I'm feeling angry and stressed.

I'm annoyed, as far as I can tell, because I find it very hard to clamp down on my strong feelings about various things baby-related, but I do, and other people seem to me to be less reluctant to speak out to strangers on these matters. (Online journals don't count as talking to strangers; if you don't like what I say you can click away). I tried to be as moderate as possible on the topic of eco-disposables and cloth nappies, and on breastfeeding (I really, really stayed very quiet about breastfeeding, and didn't even mention that I'm still feeding Linnea, which felt very like not being Out), and I didn't even enthuse too much about sling use, though I did tell the pregnant woman that feeding a baby in a sling was a valuable skill and she's welcome to come and practice with my slings once her baby's external, before she buys one of her own.

They were nice, but I feel self-repressed, and that leaves me feeling a bit bitter. Ho hum.
ailbhe: (linnea on aran)
I have searched H&M, Mothercare, Mamas & Papas, Pumpkin Patch, Toys/Babies'R'Us, Marks and Spencer, Primark, Next, Kiddicare, and even Not Just Pink And Blue. The latter are out of stock of almost everything in the 0-3 months size, and all the others can offer me is these three from Next. All I want is vests (onesies to Americans) and babygros (sleepsuits) in bright, vivid colours - especially vests, since that's what this August baby is most likely to be wearing. I don't want patterns or logos and - gods forbid - cartoon characters. Just plain, vivid colours. Not biscuit or lemon or pink or baby blue. Not even that watery green.

I refuse to try home dying again after the disastrous experiences I've had with it before. I seem jinxed for home dying. It's a surefire way to end up washing my face in water that something has bled colour into via my facecloth, and wearing underwear with weird trim and elastic.

So - do I order 'em all from the Happy Baby Slings lady, who is kind and understanding and really, really not cheap? Or has anyone a suggestion I haven't tried yet?

http://www.dribblefactory.com/ - nothing remotely suitable

http://www.sunshinetots.co.uk/ - Apparently have long-sleeved vests; "This 100% cotton long sleeved vest is generously cut, poppers under the crotch and has a Bright Bots character embroidered on the front. Colour: pink, red, blue, purple"

http://www.basics4baby.co.uk/ - have no unisex section at all.

Nordic Kids have a possible, though it's striped.

Jako-O have yellow, red and blue vests, though their pictures make the red look pretty pink. They also have a fairly bright orange sleepsuit.
ailbhe: (linnea in a dress)
Linnea walked out of the dining room, closed the door on me, and has been playing in isolation in the library for over 20 minutes. I'm really quite grateful, as I'm exhausted (though my pelvic pain is greatly lessened by doing nothing at all and walking with my knees together and only sitting on hard, flat surfaces) but it's a bit strange, how much time she chooses to spend entirely alone, when she clearly adores the time she spends with other people too. I suppose this morning we went to Tigglers Togglers and then had a mother, toddler and baby visit with us afterwards, so she was in constant company from 9:30 until 14:00. That could be it.

She's happy, whatever she's doing, and the stairgate is in front of the door so she can't run out onto the street. I'll leave her to it.
ailbhe: (hospital)
It was the consultant anaesthetist. My incredible midwife (should I buy her wine vouchers? if so, for where?) called him today and he called me personally to set up an appointment. I can see him at the pre-op clerking appointment, a week before the section, and discuss everything then. That's fine.

He sounded nice and friendly, inasmuch as anyone can on a bad mobile connection. I didn't catch his name, but that's ok.

We're getting there, and really, it could be much worse. I have to go to hospital again on Thursday morning (two days' time) for the Anti-D jab, and again 7 days later to see the surgeon who will actually operate, and 12 days after that for the pre-op, and 7 days after that for the section itself. 4 weeks today, I'll have a new baby.

Unless it decides to come earlier, at home, of course.

Goodness gracious me.
ailbhe: (Default)
Went to bed early last night because I couldn't sit upright any more. I can't sit with my legs propped up in front of me because of my pelvis, and if they're low down my knees swell up. I must have had some kind of bug, because I had to change tshirts halfway through the night and swap the duvet for a light cotton candlewick blanket. When I woke this morning I had breakfast, Rob went to work, and I brought Linnea upstairs to choose clothes; she started playing in her room instead so I went back to bed. I got to doze until 9:30 that way, with both doors open.

Then I got up, dressed us both, dragged the monster buggy out of the cupboard, and went to the pool, where I delivered Linnea to the creche and myself to the shallow pool. I did a few lengths with my arms on a float, kicking from the knees. Then I did a few breast-stroke lengths with my legs crossed to keep me from using them. And I did a fair bit of stretching. Keeping my pelvis together is proving to be harder work than I was prepared for. I wasn't up to taking Linnea into the pool afterwards, which was sad.

While showering, a woman asked both "how long have you got?" and "do you know what it is yet?" - in my next pregnancy, I will make up Bingo cards.

After that, I brought Linnea into town and bought her new shoes. I have no idea whether or not they fit but I wasn't up to arguing with the shoe fitter and chasing Linnea at the same time, so I'll see and if they don't I can just take them back as long as she hasn't worn them outside. Maybe next time "my" shoe fitter will be there again.

Then Nicky and Is came, with Baby Jo, and played for hours and hours. And then they went home. Now it's dinnertime, and tomorrow it's Tiggler's Togglers.
ailbhe: (Default)
I say "It's nearly bedtime!" and she says "Milk and bed," and cooperates in the whole PJs, nappy, milk thing. Then she gets her rabbit, kisses me goodnight, and walks upstairs, cheerfully, to go to bed. There were a few delay tactics when she was up there, but nothing major.
What on earth happened?

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