27 August 2011

For Theodore

This week I've had some realisations. Mainly they have come from sitting watching the back of Theo's head as he sits independently playing with his toys, or watching him stuff great amounts of food into his mouth (face).

The first is that I can't actually believe that we created him. This beautiful, funny, sweet amazing baby, we made him. Back when we found out I was pregnant, I can still remember the week spent agonizing, conferring with friends and family members, and finally fully understanding the weight of our predicament. I can clearly recall the moment Rob and I, teary eyed, made a pinky promise that we would do this, that we would stick by each other and have a baby. I remember those moments when I look at Theo, we made that decision, and we made Theo. It breaks my heart to think of what things would have been like if we had made to opposite choice. I can't imagine a world without Theo.  I will not imagine a world without him, because we made the right choice. Deep down we knew it was the right choice, and over a year on we are constantly reminded that it was the right choice.

The other thing that I've come to realise is that Theo is part of our family. That sounds silly because he has always been a part of our family, ever since he was brought into this world, but now he seems to have a place of his own in it. For so long he has been our baby that went everywhere with us and did what we did somehow attached to us and going along for the ride. But watching him sitting by himself, grabbing what he wants and even feeding himself, makes me realise that he is quickly growing more and more independent, and more importantly, independent from me. He feels like his own person now, and the third member of our family. He is included in our daily tasks, and plans are made around him and often for him. I'm so happy that he is becoming his own person, but sad that he is no longer so dependent on me.

I don't say it much in words on here, but hopefully I show it, but I love that little boy more than words, and sometimes can't believe our luck at creating such an incredible human being. 

26 August 2011

The weekend away

whoops, it's nearly been a week since I last posted..sorry! I don't know where it's gone. But warning, this is a very photo heavy post!

We were at my dads last weekend and returned home on Tuesday evening. I was planning to go by myself, but at the last minute Rob got signed off sick from the doctors because of his ears. For those who don't know, he's had bad hearing for well over a year now, and finally had his operation to have grommits put in his ears to drain all the excess fluid..yuk yuk...the operation went well, but his hearing is even worse now, and his ears are taking ages to clear. He went back to work, but couldn't hear anything, so got sent home. So I decided that it best he come away with me so I could look after him! We got back expecting him to return to work, but he has been signed off for another week. It's been lovely to be able to have him around more, despite him not being able to hear very well..good for him as this week Theo's favourite thing to do is screech at the top of his voice, when he's happy, when he's sad, when he's tired, when he's excited....it's a noise to describe everything, according to Theo.

Also this week Rob was able to take Theo out for the afternoon so I could get down to some serious making. As I mentioned before me and mumma friend Kimberlee have hatched an exciting plan, but we still can't really reveal much about it until its official (don't want some nasty internet type stealing our ideas!) but it involves pretty fabric, a sewing machine and some knitting needles. It was lovely to have about 4 hours to myself. I could actually hear myself think for once, and it felt good to be using my brain and hands to be doing something other than wiping bums and feeding. I really am excited about this plan, hopefully it will work and will turn out to be the perfect solution for me still being able to stay at home with Theo and earn some money, whilst being creative and actually enjoying my job.



The weekend away was nice, we saw family and I saw my old friends.






My sister also stopped by on the Sunday, which was really nice. It was good to be back in my old home town, but also strange. None of my friends live there anymore, and the people I do know who still live there are still doing the same things they were doing 7 years ago, and that depresses me a little. But most of all it doesn't feel like home anymore, not at all. Which is good, because that means that I have a new home, in Bristol, in our flat. Something which I have been searching for since I left my old town 5 years ago to go to University. But it's always good to visit and especially to show Rob where I grew up.








It's a pretty nice place to come from to be fair, a quaint little market town in Essex. We were blessed with beautiful weather on most of the days too, and there was a 'maze' festival going on in the town that weekend too. On Sunday we spent the day walking around a maze, eating ice cream and hanging in a paddling pool, well Theo did anyway!







We went to Cambridge for the day too, just Rob and I, and Theo of course. We sat around in the park eating strawberries and cream, as you do darrrling.





and lots of fun with daddy!


We also went to see my uncle and aunty and cousins in the evening, to have dinner. It was really lovely. I rarely get time to see them, and really glad we made the effort to go and see them. It always really cozy and welcoming in their house, and good to sit around and have good chats with.

So we're back in good old rainy Bristol, getting up to our usual routine. Theo's been trying lots of new foods, as well as his favourites of peach and kiwi fruit. (we found LOTS of kiwi seeds in his nappy today, lovely!) Also found some pretty cool vintage books in the charity shops, which is always pleasing. (still need to do my book post!)









That's all for now, sorry for such a condensed update! It's been busy again. Theo's still not sleeping, but I'm just going to get on with it and hope that it's just a phase and it will pass. He's constantly changing, so even if we did try one method to try and get him to sleep, he will probably change the next week anyway and it would no longer work....So then, good night!

21 August 2011

Mummy blogs number two

So since the last 'mummy blog' post I did a while back I've started following and reading a few more...these are mainly from twitter, where I have joined a wonderful circle of mummas to talk about all things sleep/poo/teething/eating related...it's fun, honest.

It has been great being able to have that circle of support and friends (can I call them friends? I hope so) available at the end of my fingertips. The other morning there was about an hour in the morning where we all said hello to each other and shared how our nights sleep had been! It was really sweet, and made me feel a little warm and fuzzy (in an internet sort of way)

Well anyway, I love finding new blogs, and try to keep up to date with most! I'm also going to try and get better at commenting..so here they are:

http://mamaknitscakes.wordpress.com/
http://www.lovebryony.co.uk/wp/
http://bornin2011.wordpress.com/
http://onlysayingwhatyourethinking.blogspot.com/
http://ourlittleclann.blogspot.com/
http://newmumontheblog.blogspot.com/
http://mummyfiles.wordpress.com/

I'm sure I've forgotten some, and if I have I'm sorry, I have a little man vying for my attention right now! Hope everyone is having a good weekend! 

18 August 2011

Help!

So fingers crossed Theo will sleep tonight, as I think I've had enough sleepless nights as my body can handle. For the past week or so he has been waking up nearly every two hours. Even with the new cot attatched to the side of the bed he still seems to want to feed ALL the time.

I don't know what I'm doing wrong? Surely it's not normal for a 6 and a half month old to be sleeping like a newborn? His stomach is big enough to be able to take enough food to last him at least 4 or 5 hours?

When I feed him to sleep to put him down for the night I have to lie with him for at least an hour to make sure he stays asleep, and even then he usually wakes up after about an hour after I get up and leave him. In the days its the same, the only way to make sure he naps for a decent amount of time, is if I stay with him. I don't really know what to do or how to change this, or whether its just a stage he's going through. I don't want to try the whole leave him to cry thing, as I don't think it works. He gets himself so worked up that he just pukes everywhere, and we are back to square one.

I feel that maybe I should've done things differently, and perhaps he's too dependent on me being with him to be able to sleep...I'm not really sure what to do now, or how long this will go on for, but I'm starting to dread the nights because I know he'll just wake up all the time.

Any tips or advice? and is anyone else in the same boat? I feel like I'm the only one who has this many problems with the baby sleeping, and most other people have some sort of pattern or good napping techniques!

I know I'm such a worrier and hopefully this phase will pass (please tell me it passes....pleeeeease?) or it's a growth spurt blaadey bla...but what if he is a bad sleeper forever?! for the rest of his childhood? what if I never sleep again!? What if I have to spend the rest of my days in bed, waiting for Theo to sleep properly..actually that doesn't sound too bad.

Night.


14 August 2011

and a good weekend

Hi! It's Sunday evening, we've already had dinner and Theo has been asleep for about half an hour..fingers crossed he will stay asleep until I go to bed in about an hour.

So it's a nice evening, I even managed to do some knitting earlier!

This weekend has been really nice, but still a little over shadowed by the tired grumpy monster that I become sometimes, but mostly was good. My sister came to visit for the weekend and arrived late on Friday night. We stayed up chatting for a bit then retired to bed. The next morning we woke up ( well Theo woke up early) and we went for a play with aunty, who was really excited to see him!

On a side note, we finally bought a mattress for Theo's cot bed, and put it up against the bed with the side off, so it's sort of like we are still co-sleeping, just with a lot (a LOT!) more room. It got to the point with Theo sleeping between us, where none of us were getting much sleep, and I woke every morning feeling stiff from lying in awkward positions. Theo hasn't really seemed to have noticed the move, except waking up less, which is great! So I feel I've at least had a little more sleep! Hooray.

Anyway back to the weekend. In the morning we went out to run some errands, then later made our way over to our friends to walk to Aston court so see the Bristol Balloon fiesta! It was my first ever time going, and I was really excited as I'd seen lots of photos of it, but always managed to miss it.

It was a lot bigger than I imagined with a proper fair, lots of stalls and rides.





My sister and I got very over excited and nostalgic at all the stalls and smells of trodden down grass, candy floss, burgers and doughnuts...It reminded us of the fair that came to our town every year that we always went to with our dad.

We worked our way through the crowds to try and get a good spot to see the balloons taking off from. We had a little picnic and sat chatting for a while before the take off. Theo was being a funny little baby, trying to move all over the place (so desperate to crawl!) and trying to grab at all the food, at one point managing to put his hand in a full pot of hummus, then preceded to wipe it all over his face! He eventually settled down and had a feed and went to sleep.

The balloons started to take off shortly after he fell asleep. It was really exciting, a lot more than I had anticipated and really fascinating and beautiful to watch. There were so many! About 85 in total I think?




Theo eventually woke up and was able to have a little glimpse of the balloons!


 It was so lovely to be out as a family, at a family friendly event, with my sister and friends. There's not much we can do in the evenings that really involve being out with the baby so it was really refreshing to do so. I really really enjoyed it!

It was pretty late by the time we got home, so we got lovely takeaway burgers from a place near us. We stayed up talking for a little while, but we were all so tired that we went to bed!

This morning though I felt terrible. Theo woke about 6.30 and was awake on and off until about 8 I think, when he finally went back to sleep and so did I. Rob went to work and we spent most of the morning in our pyjamas. When I took Theo in for his nap in the afternoon my sister gave me a foot massage and told me to have a nap too! When I woke up again she had done all the washing up, put the washing out and had cooked lunch! What a lovely surprise...! After this went we out for a coffee and some cake. Then it was time for her to go :( This weekend went really quickly, but I enjoyed it a lot.

I really do hope that this 6 months low point I'm having passes, as it really is quite horrible. A lot of the time I feel like everything is on top of me and there is no way that it will let up. I'm hoping that another trip back home to see friends and family and a few more nights of better sleep will help, if not I will go and speak to the doctor I guess.

Right that's all for now..oh yeh there have been more exciting developments in the plans with Kimberlee, but it's all but sssh at the moment, because it's still very early days! I hope everyone else had a good weekend!

oh p.s almost forgot! Finally managed to get a photo of Theo's little teeth that have appeared...and yes they are sharp...


12 August 2011

a tough week

wow I can't actually believe it's Friday again, where has this week gone..oh right it's been swallowed by my all consuming exhausting bad mood...

I don't know if anyone else has experienced the 6 month wave of exhaustion? Sometimes this week I've felt as tired as I did in those very first weeks of Theo's life. I've been sleeping with Theo in the afternoons when he's taken his naps, because I literally can't keep my eyes open. I've also had those horrid feelings of being fed up, uninspired, worried about money and everything else and just feeling a little stuck.

I hate, hate feeling like this, because I actually love my little life, and really couldn't ask for anything more. I feel so lucky to have my little family and a nice comfortable home. It makes me feel like I'm being a spoilt brat and I should be more thankful that I have a happy, lovely healthy baby. A wonderful boyfriend (fiancee eek!) who is patient with me and is wonderful with everything else. And great family and friends to talk to and help out. I in fact feel really lucky. But sometimes it's easier to wallow in self pity, right?

Yesterday I met up with two twitter mummies and had a lovely afternoon (@stillawake and @kimbled) Kimberlee and I had a great and inspiring chat about future projects that I'm very excited about, but will talk about that more later on.

We also chatted about all things baby and mummy related, and again I do feel so lucky for what I have, and how things have turned out. We talked about something which I have talked about with many other mums about, and that is the feeling of the hugest amount of love and fear you feel for your baby at the same time. No-one ever really tells you about it before the baby is here, probably because it is pretty indescribable. But I guess it starts when you are pregnant, knowing that at some point something could go wrong, and even though you haven't met this little creature growing inside of you, you feel so protective over it already, and you fear so much anything going wrong. But when you actually meet the baby then that feeling is suddenly catapulted into the realm of the incomprehensible. When thinking about something happening to either Theo myself or Rob (which sadly happens quite a lot) I'm filled with the biggest feeling of fear and sadness at what life would be like if that did happen. It makes my brain hurt so much because I can't actually begin to know or feel what it would be like. When watching the news or programmes about things happening to peoples children or parents it pretty much makes me cry instantly because I put myself in that position. It is such an amazing parody. That the love you feel can be both so fulfilling and devastating at the same time.

So that's all, wow I don't really know where that all came from, not what I intended to write about, but I guess that's what this little blog here is all about! So my lesson for today is to stop being such a grump and be bloody thankful for what I have, as it is perfect.

10 August 2011

It's ok to change my mind, right?

So I know I made a big decision about not going back to work here. I decided that I was going make myself 'self employed'. I do really want to figure out a way to work from home, and be self employed, but I need to be able to make money from it. I think I will aim to be self-employed very soon, but I think it's going to take a bit longer than anticipated to work out, and change over all the tax credits and everything.

So, depending on what my old job says, on whether I can go back, I might just try and work a few afternoons a week. Hopefully this will coincide with Rob being off of work, or family watching Theo for a few hours. I think this will just be a temporary solution, just to have a bit of money coming in, as I try and set up something to do from home and be self employed. I think that by the time Theo is 7 and a half - 8 months (when I will try and go back to work) it will be a bit easier to leave him especially if it's only for a few hours twice a week. It might actually be nice to have some time away from home and baby (dare I say it!)

Is that ok? I think I was a little bit hasty in thinking that it would all work out quickly, but these things take time and we still need a bit of money to eat! (yikes!) What with all the electricity bills going up amongst other things, I've said it before and I'll definitely say it again...It's hard being an adult!

Anyway, that's about it now, I got Theo weighed yesterday, the monster is 18lbs 15oz! way to go Theo! He has two little teeth now, is munching on food properly. He is becoming an expert drummer and likes to dance around the living room with Mumma when no-one else is there.

My sister is coming to visit this weekend and we're going to the Bristol Balloon fiesta, I'm super excited as I've never been before. Then soon I will be visiting my home town for a week to see family and friends, I'm excited! Rob also has more holiday to take before November, so we may (money permitting) be able to go on a little British jaunt.

Here are some photos of theo, as I know that's what everyone really wants to see...





06 August 2011

At yaya's house

Hello, I am writing to you today from my holiday home, aka my mums house. It's about that time when I need a little break from Bristol and want to spend some time with my dearest mother. Also I think Rob needed a little bit of a break too, lucky boy!

I drove up to my mum's house (for the last time!) on Wednesday. It's going to be strange her not living up here anymore, and even stranger her living so much much closer, but much better really. But I think I'm going to miss it a little bit here, even though I only lived here for the summer last year, but it was the start of my pregnancy journey. It was the place where we met Theo for the first time at the scan, found out he was a boy and heard his heart beat for the first time! All really exciting milestones in my pregnancy. I really enjoyed living here when I did, it felt like my last chance to be the child, the one to be looked after, rather than the one doing the looking after. I know that sounds silly as I'm a grown women and an 'adult' (whatever that means), but there is still something special about being cared for by your mum, no matter how old you are!

So anyway I have spent the time going back to the places I went to before, for the last time (maybe not the last time ever, but for a while at least) I went to Sleaford to hit up the charity shops, which are usually pretty good. I find small town charity shops are so much better than city ones, it's always cheaper and you can always find hidden gems!


I found these great little wellies for when Theo is big enough to run and splash around in puddles! They have big whale grins on the toes, only £1! Also a nice collection of little books. I couldn't believe it when  I found the 'Theo's rainy day' book. I've never seen a book with his name on before, and I bought it on a rainy day, believe it or not! meant to be...

I can't wait to build up my children's book selection, in fact my mum has given me some of my old books from when I was little and I love looking at them, as they were my favourites. I will try and do a post of all my favourite books, and new ones I have collected, which coincides with inspiration from two other mummas doing a similar thing on their blogs here and here

Anyway, yesterday we went into Lincoln to have a look around. We tried Theo in one of those baby walkers in mothercare, which he loved and actually managed to move around on the floor a little with, it was really funny and sweet. Going to try and look out for one at a car boot or gumtree, as bugger paying £50-75 for one that is new and not going to last that long! This mother-baby market is a joke! How much money do they expect you to shell out for these things that only last 6 months or so?!

But saying that, Theo did get a nice new toy from his grandparents, because it is pretty cool! Here is a little video of our rockstar drummer in the making:



The toy is meant for a 1 year old, so I was pretty impressed that Theo seemed to figure it out! He loves slapping and drumming on things, so this is perfect! what a lucky lucky boy...

We were all pretty tired out when we came home, and my mum took Theo to get him to sleep. I went upstairs a little later to check on him and this is what I found:


So sweet! It made me feel all warm and a little teary as it was lovely to see them like this together!

We also bought a few more clothes for Theo and a photo album so I can finally get photos of Theo into an album (need to print some out as well...) I got a batch printed from birth til about 3 months, but since then we have just been putting them on the computer, or mainly all on Intsagram. On blurb you can make your own book from all of your Instagram pictures, which I think I will do as it's a nice way of conserving all the photos that will end up lost of forgotten soon enough. I think I've mentioned before that I wrote my dissertation on the decline of the 'family album' and it's something I feel really strongly about. We try and use our film camera and take 'real' photos of us as a family, but it's sometimes so much easier to just use the iphone (and I'm totally addicted to Instagram!) But it's always there in the back of my mind, must make a photo album! Especially of the 1st year of the bebes life, half way there!

So anywhere, here are some photos of Theo, I'm so impressed with his sitting skills now, he rarely falls over anymore and he is so steady and strong, proud mumma!


And to celebrate 'World Breastfeeding Week' my little contribution:


Anyway, looking forward to getting back to Bristol and seeing Rob. Even though it's nice to have some space every now and then I miss him as soon as I go away! And Alma of course...

Car boot sale tomorrow morning, hooray!

see ya! hope you're all having a lovely weekend


02 August 2011

guilty

I haven't posted properly in about a week, and I have that terrible blogger guilt feeling, I'm not sure why. I essentially just started this blog to post thoughts and feelings about being pregnant without any other motive than being able to write it down. I don't know what really compels me to keep writing, maybe to keep a record of things that happen week by week in Theo's life, before they are forgotten. Which is a good reason I suppose. But I don't like the fact that sometimes I feel pressured (by myself) to write blog posts, just to update the blog, and those posts are ultimately not very good. So I am going to strive to only write blog posts that I really want to write, that mean something, and try and not let the blogging guilt get in the way of actually enjoying the times when I'm not on the computer!

Anyway, don't know where that came from, on with the post!

This post is going to be mainly about my baby led weaning journey, as that seems the most pressing issue at the moment.

So, I don't know what/where/how/or why made me decide to follow baby led weaning really. I had never heard of it before Theo was born, and only did a tiny bit of research into it when I did hear about it. Weaning was always this far off point that I would deal with when it came to it. A friend and I talked about it, and discussed the pros and cons of it compared to spoon fed weaning, from what we had both heard. We decided that we liked the sound of it, and when it came to it try and see how it went. I have always been led by Theo in the rest of the other aspects of baby life, without me planning or being particularly aware that that's what I was doing. So after reading a bit more into BLW it seemed like the next logical step, to let Theo lead his weaning journey too.

At five and a half months he started to get really interested in food, and was grabbing at it, so we decided to give him little tries of food, here and here. These are probably some of my favourite photos of Theo!

Anyway he seemed really into the food straight away, and was pretty good at putting things straight in his mouth. We tried banana and avocado in finger foods, then in mushy bits. He would gag loads and be sick. I was a little put off and scared by this, but decided that it was probably just his way of learning, so thought it best just to carry on.

Since we came home from holiday we have tried cucumber, peach, plum, spaghetti, toast, scrambled egg, pear, pepper, chips, chicken, broccoli and some other things I have probably forgotten! since Theo was little he has always been a sicky baby, so I guess that's why, when he gagged, he was sick quite easily. But since we just carried on he hardly gags any more, and when he does he just lets the food fall out of his mouth, rather than being sick, so that is a major development.  Also this morning I found seeds in his nappy, from the multi seed toast he had yesterday morning, how exciting! I don't think I've ever been that excited looking at poo before (how glamorous my life has become!). It means that he's actually been eating some of the food rather than just chomping.

So I am really enjoying BLW so far. Theo eats most of the time when we eat, unless he's asleep, even if its jut a bit of cucumber, to make him feel part of meal times.

anyway in addition to his progress this week, he has also grown some teeth! I reported that he had one coming through, which is now fully there, and yesterday one just appeared from no where! It's very exciting, but also scary. No bites yet on me when feeding, but I'm dreading it if he ever does, because those are some sharp little teeth! So exciting times...

Now time for a quick round up of the week. Theo went on a swing for the first time, met up with some of his little friends and went to the harbourside festival for the first ever time! Not a lot has been really happening, just the same old same old! In the last few days Theo's sitting ability has come on so well! He can sit unaided for a long time now, just playing with his toys and looking around...







 Today we went to visit Malvern and to see the new house that my mum will be moving to at the end of the summer. It's really lovely, and so is the town, but mostly I'm excited about how close she will be, it takes only about an hour to get there, compared to the 5 or so it takes to get to where she lives now. Exciting!!

I will call it a night, (it's taken me about 3 hours to write this post off and on!) good night!
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