Persephone: Parent

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Outdoor Fun: The Garden

We have lots of local parks, but sometimes playing in the garden is easier. Unfortunately what we currently have as a garden is not what most people call a garden. Don’t get me wrong, it’s better than nothing, but it is far from child friendly.

It’s at the side of our house and exposed on all three sides by a wall that is easily climbable by an adult (hello thieves and kidnappers). In fact on one side, the neighbour’s fence blew down and so the wall is easily climbable by Elvis (and the neighbour’s giant dog who quite frankly scares me). The floor is covered in moss and building debris. There are two drainage covers and the step back into the house is quite high.

Everything about it is dangerous!

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Baby’s Second Picnic – A Much Better Day

I was so apprehensive about our second picnic invite, this time with two older babies, that I didn’t take any food as I was adamant I was going to feed him at home.

I just really hadn’t wanted another day of sitting there cold as Elvis slept and my friends sat with their babies on the swings. Nor did I want to have a complaining baby because he wanted to move and be free. That was the joy of having the second picnic with older babies (only about 4 months, but they’re toddlers now), they understood Elvis and my frustrations.

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Preparing for Nursery

A fellow Mummy advised me to start doing lots with Elvis, to get him used to not always being alone at home with me before I pack him off to nursery. I’m not sure how much I agree, but it has made me question if there is anything I should do to prepare him.

There’s fewer than 12 weeks now until it all happens, until I graduate this first year and our new family life begins – the one where we work and study, the one that lasts for the next 15 years.

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Monthly Update: Month 11

Weight: 22lb 14oz

Bedtime: Same as before, 7pm for him and maybe half ten for me. He also doesn’t go to sleep straight away anymore and can talk to himself in his cot for up to an hour. I blame the lighter evenings.

Naps/Length: Well, isn’t this a tricky topic! I’ve made him cut out his first nap; 8am was far too early to have a nap especially when twice a week we need to leave the house by 9am! So now we don’t get him up until half 7 (after I eat my breakfast in peace), then he has two naps, one at about 10 or 11 and then at 3. It can take 30-45 minutes of him talking to himself before he falls asleep. These naps vary from 1hr to 2.5hrs, but are about 3 hours for the whole day.

Number of feeds in 24hrs: I was going to wait until today, his 11 month birthday, to drop his two feeds to one, but the other night I was lazy and went to bed without doing his dream feed. He hasn’t had it since. His one remaining feed is a bit hit and miss now.

Favourite toy/objects: He likes dancing on his Sit to Stand Tower, we’ve just discovered that his head being smooshed into things (including me and Daddy) are him hugging! He likes climbing the stairs and would prefer that to toys! Oh, and climbing backwards onto his chair and trying to climb off of the top of it. He climbed onto a toddler seesaw the other day and loved it, along with the large tunnel for climbing through that I thought would scare him!

Clothing age: 9-12 month in everything except his hat which is 1yr to 3yr because I couldn’t find 12-18 month and thought he was too far through for a 9-12month one.

Foot length: Haven’t done it this month yet!

Milestones: He spent a day shaking his head constantly and has now stopped that again! Oh, and, of course, he has two teeth!

My swimming ability: The pool is constantly closed on the weekend, so I’ve started jogging and am currently on 20 minutes twice a week.

What I’m reading: I’ve made it onto the re-read of Storm and Swords.

New Foods: I tried white chocolate today. He did not like it, so more for me!

Teeth: Two! But they’re tiny!

Words: Other than the “ah” noise that me makes when he smooshes things with his face, none.

Fears: Noisy books, the ones with the buttons – he presses the button, screams and then presses the button again. He still hates the hoover. I bought some toy fish for the bath, when he has them in the bath, Elvis is fine, but outside of the bath the green one makes him cry.

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Monthly Update: Month 10

Weight: 22lb 5oz at 9.5 months.

Bedtime: Still at 7pm, maybe slightly earlier if he finishes his milk quickly.

Naps/Length: Still 2 or 3 a day, from 1hr to 2hours depending on total over the day.

Number of feeds in 24hrs: 2, and sometimes just the one! We might not make it to 12 months of breastfeeding at this rate! I now give Elvis a cup of cow’s milk with breakfast simply because he stopped eating his cereal.

Favourite toy/objects: Cubes, books, balls from his ball pit.

Clothing age: 9-12 months for everything.

Foot length: 10.9cm

Milestones: Can stand unaided for… quite a while. We’ve never managed to time it! Don’t think he’s done any others. He can put objects into a box. Oh, and he’s started clapping!

My swimming ability: 1058m on average.

What I’m reading: Still on Clash of Kings, I keep seeing the countdown for season 4 and thinking, oh I only have a few chapters left… I will try and finish it this weekend! Challenge, accepted!

New Foods: He’s eating meat now and still loves his pasta. I’m not sure we’ve given him anything new. Unless you count the prawn cracker I naughtily gave him. Or the cheesecake my Auntie gave him without permission!

Number of Stairs: All of them, I just haven’t timed him. He hasn’t figured out the safe way of coming down though.

Time Across the Landing: Haven’t timed him in a while. Oops.

Words: None. Booo! I did read somewhere that language is hereditary and I was a late bloomer. I didn’t start speaking until I was 4 after speech therapy, so he has a while to go before I worry!

Fears: He doesn’t like me pretending to be an elephant. Weirdo. He dislikes having doors closed but I think that’s more a dislike than fear. He still hates the hoover, hairdryers and similar noises.

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(Stair) Gates to Heaven

With Elvis’ increasing mobility we had to invest in safety gates. Originally we wanted one at the top and one at the bottom of the stairs. We’ve had some hiccups, but we now have two:

BabyDan Auto Foldable Safety Gate
Lindam Sure Shut Gate

And I love them both!

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Monthly Update: Month 9

Weight: 21lb 11 and slowly moving up a centile, my little chunky monkey!

Bedtime: 7pm for him still, me about half 10 or later. And with my insomnia maybe 2am!

Naps/Length: He’s decided he wants a morning nap if we’re not at a group which can last until mid-morning, stopping his mid-morning nap! His afternoon naps can then last over an hour. It’s all a bit hit and miss, but not haphazard. If that makes sense?

Number of feeds in 24hrs: Recently he’s dropped a feed, now he has 3 during the day and I dreamfeed before bed, so 4. His dreamfeed had started to be really quick so I thought he was dropping it, but then we spent a few days really busy and he dropped a daytime one instead. Now, during the day, he goes 5-6 hours. I remember when he first got to that overnight!

Favourite toy/objects: Elvis loves knocking over his tower, hitting things together, hitting everything in general.

Clothing age: 9-12 months in everything but trousers.

Foot length: 10.3cm.

Milestones: Can climb the stairs. Walked across the room with his walker. He may have done his first ever sign!

My swimming ability: Been a bit ill this month so I’ve dropped to about 1000m. Stupid cough!

What I’m reading: Still on Clash. Elvis has been sleeping better so I don’t get the opportunity to read.

New Foods: He eats pasta well now and sometimes likes chomping on carrots and cucumber. I’m not sure I’ve offered him anything new, but he has enjoyed sausages and chicken finally! He also loves crackers.

Number of Stairs: All of them! He now alternates which leg he goes up each step, first one with a knee, second leg with his foot. No falls either!

Time Across the Landing: 15 seconds.

Words: None. But he may have signed ‘milk’.

Fears: He no longer seems scared of the hoover. He’s not as bad with sudden loud noises, but he’ll cry if someone else does. He can also cry when put down before deciding he’s happy!

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Monthly Update: Month 8

Weight: Haven’t got him weighed this week (he had a lovely vomiting bug yesterday), but two weeks ago he weighed 20lb 2.

Bedtime: Still at 7pm. Mine is now at half 10! And with my sometimes random insomnia, it can be a lot later. Even better, over the past few weeks he has sometimes not even stirred overnight for his dummy! Two nights was because of his illness, but he had done a few before that, too!

Naps/Length: Three or two. And his final one is interrupted by a quick feed. His early am one all depends on if he’s awake by 7am though.

Number of feeds in 24hrs: 5 with his dreamfeed becoming incredibly quicker.

Favourite toy/objects: He’s been loving his toy remote control, his walker, maracas and his building block stars.

Clothing age: 6-9 months except his sleepsuit and snowsuits which are 9-12. His legs are too long for one and far too short for the other, but it’s only a problem before we get him dressed and he’s trying to stand!

Foot length: 10.3cm still.

Milestones: He can pull himself up to standing on anything and everything. From sitting and lying down, and even in his grobag. He can now crawl and commando crawl, and he prefers to eat teeny things with his pincer grip! You can see him trying to figure out how exactly to sit back down when standing, but he has enough balance to pick up toys off the floor. He’s certainly started coasting, too!

My swimming ability: 1100m. I did make an extra 50m the other day, it might be a fluke!

What I’m reading: Going well with Clash of Kings, I’ve even decided to re-read Dance and Feast together and then by character for a 3rd re-read!

New Foods: scotch eggs and cheerios!

Number of Stairs: 2.

Time Across the Landing: 45 seconds.

Words: He repeats the m sound when upset and d when he’s happy. Elvis also loves the g sound so we’re trying to teach him gigidy!

Fears: He hates the vacuum cleaner. He’s petrified of it! And he doesn’t like the whipped cream can, yet he likes whipped cream. Odd boy!

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Treasure Baskets and Sensory Play

I went to a parenting class over the last half term of last year and one of the 6 sessions was on play. From this session I took two key points:

One – Elvis loved picking his own items from the treasure basket at the centre.

Two – He especially loved the chunky metal bracelet!

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Countdown to Christmas

No, not an actual countdown, although I think it’s about 6 weeks away.

I’ve always been a big planner especially when it then comes to Christmas. I gather the gift guides, read them over and over and decide what I’m going to buy everyone. This year’s no different except I would probably have bought more by now.

I did start buying presents today, none for little Elvis yet!
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