Persephone: Parent

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And So The End Begins

This week marks the last week of what I’ve considered for however long as normal because it’s all coming to an end. My maternity leave ended a month ago and I’m still not back at work for almost 4 weeks but it’s all starting to end. Next week we’ll be in a period of transition for a few months.

I’m excited about the future about what will become the new normal but I am also sad about this week.

Tuesday was our last Tuesday where it was just the two of us, just Robin and I all day long. Where she could nap truly whenever she wanted as there was no nursery run. We could take meals slower, potter around playing in the bedrooms, do extra shopping. That’s all gone now. The one day a week where she could call the shots. And on our last Tuesday I spent it napping due to an awful migraine. Next Tuesday, Robin and I get to play at nursery for an hour for her first settling in session! Never again will she truly be able to call the shots. I mean, she has some freedom on weekends with regards to her naps, but if we want to go out as a family, her routine is the one sacrificed. Poor, second child, all she ever got was one day a week.

Oh, the sadness!

Wednesday is the day that I’ve been taking Robin for swimming lessons before lunch and then the nursery run. Next week Robin will have her second nursery settling session so I need to make sure she naps in the morning. Her lesson is during her nap time, which sometimes I can work around by taking her shopping right before and she’ll fall asleep for maybe 20 minutes. Most of the time, I just don’t let her nap and she waits until after the nursery run at 2 or 3pm. She might have been okay next week, swimming and then napping after an hour at nursery, but I don’t want to risk it. Next Wednesday, she gets to go into her nursery room for an hour whilst I fill in paperwork in the office. So she’ll be alone! She’s been in a creche loads for the therapy course I was doing so I’m not worried about leaving her. She also smiles and seems to really like the look of all of the staff when we pick Elvis up so I’m not fussed, but I’d prefer her to not be overtired! As of next week, and for the transition period maybe longer, both children will have their lessons on a Friday, his right after hers. As in, immediately after. Nanny will have to do more than just babysit one of them. Again, I’m quite sad about it as I’m so used to doing each swimming lesson with them on their own. Now, each of them are going to intrude on the other’s time. I won’t be able to get Robin dressed after her lesson. I won’t be able to get Elvis ready for his lesson. Since he was just 10 weeks old, I’ve taken him swimming, just the two of us for most of that time.

Oh, the sadness!

Thursday is the day where, well, we quite often don’t do much and next week Robin will have her third and final settling in session, where I take her and leave the building for an hour! Now, if I’d thought about it properly, I would have done it in the morning whilst Elvis is in nursery and scored myself an hour child-free, instead, I might take Elvis out for a drink and snack, maybe cake and hot chocolate – just the two of us. Sometimes on a Thursday, a friend visits with her toddler, we lunch and then collect Elvis, maybe go to a park. If not, I get cleaning done during Robin’s nap. I don’t know how I’m going to see my Thursday friend in all honesty. With my work hours, her school run, my nursery run. We’ll figure out something, but I can’t quite see how it’ll work out. We might be able to snatch an hour once a week. We could move to a Friday (along with half the rest of the bloody world), but with swimming in the morning, it might still only be an hour, maybe two. With some friends, I quite like to be limited to only an hour here and there, but not with Thursday Friend. I’m not even fussed about the cleaning, that’s built in to my new routine, but Thursday Friend, well, we might get more time during school holidays. Oh, dear, her toddler and Robin are really cute together – they talk and kind of actually play with each other. They might not see each other as much!

Oh, even more sadness!

I’m typing this just as we finished our last ever normal Thursday nursery run. Although for the next two weeks, Mondays will be normal, the other days won’t be. Tomorrow is the last Friday as normal before they both have to go on a Friday, inevitably making my Fridays far busier than currently. Oh, dear, all of this change and I am feeling a bit down about it. But I am also excited. Robin loved the creche she went to, she loves the staff we see at nursery and she is far more of a sociable baby than Elvis ever was or is now. I’ve loved seeing how Elvis developed at nursery, doing things that it would never have occurred to me to do (paint with blocks, cars, animals; use clean food containers to make a shop, paint and cook in general actually, try writing over thicker, highlighter pens), see what he picked as things he liked to play with, hear who he considers friends and who upset who today (haha!) and I am excited about Robin getting to experience all of that. With her big brother just downstairs.

But there’s still sadness at this chapter ending.

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Possessive Boy

At first I thought that my son, who has only just developed the ability/desire to hug and kiss people, was having a spot of separation anxiety, but I think it’s actually some sort of possessive streak. Initially it was crying when I took him to nursery alone – perhaps he thought we were off out somewhere fun together before I abandoned him there! Then it was crying if I didn’t get in the car with Daddy to take him to nursery – am I not allowed a day off? I started to wonder if it was simply OCD and breaking his routine, but he seems fine when I’m genuinely not around. Oh, and then there were the tears when Daddy drove away with Nanny – how dare Daddy leave!

Then I noticed that I was allowed to play with his toys, Daddy wasn’t unless it was bedtime and then Daddy could join in. I still thought it was a separation thing and preferring mummy to daddy. When he was upset, Elvis currently prefers me to Daddy. If we’re both there that is! I am slightly worried if there is an element of Mummy-love because Robin isn’t far off!

Until I then realised it isn’t Mummy-love, it isn’t breaking a routine, it isn’t even being separated from me. Nope, it’s Elvis deciding everything is his!

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Baby Envy

Firstly, Elvis and his tempers have gone! He is having trouble with his naps sometimes (dropping to 1 but length depends on time of day) but whatever his problems were they seem to have settled down. I think it was just the upheaval – the move, the changes in nursery, the house guests. I am so relieved. I mean, it does make me wonder if when Robin arrives, Elvis won’t have some sort of regression with his tempers, but that’s in another few months.

I’m trying to encourage Elvis to walk more. He loves walking and running, but if I have the pushchair he just wants to climb in it. I don’t really blame him. The only thing is I haven’t bought, and really don’t intend to, a double pushchair. I will try and get a buggy board, but he needs to be walking home from nursery in January/February. And it’ll be raining and snowing which will either encourage him because it’s fun or not! Am I putting too much faith in / pressure on him?

On an amazingly positive note, Elvis let me hold a baby! Back in July he wouldn’t even let me go near one. I was his. I knew that he would have to adapt to Robin, but I hoped he wouldn’t have that immediate jealousy. Well, he let me pick up and then comfort jiggle my friend’s 6month old. I think he’s also making steps with sharing, too. There’s hope for Robin!

No, there’s hope for all of us!

~ P

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Lonely Parenting

For the first 9 months, minus the first 2 maybe, my life was filled with baby groups and chatting with the other mummies, mummies whose babies are all the same age. But then, the 9 month mark hits and mummies have to start going back to work. I made it to Elvis’ 13 month birthday, but for those last 4 months, life became more lonely.
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Changing The Routine: An Update

I thought it had been ages since I last posted, but it’s only really been 8 days. But that was a standard post that had been sitting in my drafts for ages.

I think it’s fair to say that I’ve become quite complacent about blogging. I did write a few poems the other weekend and set up scheduled posts on my original blog to see it through to Christmas! I also have an idea about a photography series on here.

What I really need to do is find the motivation to post!

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Out with the Old…

… And in with the new.

That’s how I’m seeing Elvis’ birthday and holiday to Spain; when we return there are about 5 weeks until we graduate and start nursery/work. That is 5 weeks to establish a new routine to at least guide the nursery as best as we can.

Currently our routine looks roughly like this most days –
0700 Mummy get up
0730 (unless still asleep) Elvis get up.
0930 (unless a baby group) Elvis nap until 1130
1200 (unless his nap started later) Elvis lunch
1500 Elvis nap, unless he had enough or had a late nap in the morning, then this is at 1600
1700 Elvis dinner
1815 Elvis bath, story, milk and then bed at 1900.

All I know about the 5 weeks post holiday, and graduation, is that I want the 1700 onwards routine to remain un-altered and that we’re all going to have to get up at 0630. Presumably I will have to add one or two snack times in if breakfast is earlier and his naps may simply time shift.

Or they may not; that’s what the 5 weeks prep are.

I’ve never fully dictated Elvis’ schedule before, not how I will dictate and change his waking time and it is a little scary!
~ P

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Goodbye Group!

With the countdown to Elvis’ first birthday and holiday treat well underway, we have just said goodbye to our first group. Age-wise we could still attend, but after the chaos is over, we’re going to start preparing for Nursery and finding a new routine. That new routine might mean the end of some of our current baby groups.

Which isn’t a problem; lots of Elvis’ baby friends will stop going as their mummies graduate and return to work. And today, all the little ones are so tiny! I swear that Elvis was never that small!

It’s a bit silly because there are other groups at the same place and the mummies I’ve made friends with will still be contactable, I guess it’s the first major change that I have to make in preparation of graduating. These groups were the only thing that got me through months 2 to 5, the only thing that kept me sane.

Can’t I just stay home forever?

~ P

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All Change Ahead

This is the last week of what has become so familiar to me and it’s kind of sad. I’m not graduating yet, but with two weks of holidays, a half term week and a baby turning one it most certainly is all change ahead.

In all fairness, Elvis has changed his routine, making morning groups quite difficult so I should have altered groups a few weeks ago to suit him better. Even with the changes I’ll make in a few weeks, it’ll only be for a few weeks and then it’s all change again when I finally graduate my maternity-baby year-ish.

I’m going to enjoy what remains of my final week in this routine, I will enjoy 3 weeks of reckless abandonment and then a few weeks attending lots of groups before graduation and the possibility of no more groups ever!

Maybe by September we’ll have a new normal!

~ P

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Countdown to Graduating

It’s gradually creeping up on me: Graduation, the time when I graduate from my maternity leave, from The Other Side and return to work.

I want to say return to normal, but nothing will be the normal that it once was ever again. Nope, I just have to figure out a new routine, a new way of doing everything. Which is why I’m chilling out now. Elvis only wants to nap in his cot? Fine, I’m going to enjoy my time at home, relaxing before I graduate. Elvis needs to learn to nap at Nanny’s. Nope, I have even longer before he’ll be going to Nanny’s once a week and who knows what his schedule will be like at 15 months so I’m going to chill about it.

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Monthly Update: Month 3

Weight: 16lb, that’s over a pound since last time! But he hasn’t quite doubled his birth weight yet.

Bedtime: Elvis has started going to bed at 1800, me at 2000. He’s in his moses basket in our bedroom for the first part of the night, then he ends up in bed with both of us (Daddy’s not on the sofa!). I was sick of the co-sleeping and it had to stop. I now have a few hours to myself on an evening. What a luxury!

Naps/Length: He’s started having proper naps, he has about 3 of half an hour. In his Moses, not on me and with a dummy, not from a feed. There is a definite routine starting to form now.

Number of feeds in 24hrs: approximately 7. He can go 6 hours overnight now!

Favourite toy/objects: Same as last time, his playgym and mobile. He does also like some of his rattles and teethers a lot. He also likes batting at his normal playgym, giving me time to have a quick wee!

Clothing age: Still in 3-6 months.

Foot length: 9.8cm.

Milestones: No significant other than sleeping on his own!

My swimming ability: 700m, in perspective, when I started regular swimming at about 24 weeks pregnant, I could manage 400m and when I stopped swimming at about 38weeks I could do 600m.

What I’m reading: Slowly on my first re-read of Game of Thrones.

New Foods: N/A

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