Thursday, August 28, 2008

...this little piggy

Each day in this wonderful world of motherhood, my son gives me a little present. Or, at least, that's how I like to view these things. Sometimes, it's a raisin from his snack bowl. Sometimes, it's a new word. Sometimes it's a little kiss. Recently, it's been a smack on the back of the head. Giftwrapped, of course, with a giggle, although I do rather wish it had been bubble wrap.

It's all change with the spud at the moment as we are moving him on from his childminder who, lovely though she is, is being targeted by her crack-addict neighbour and we suddenly didn't feel quite so comfortable dropping off our little bean at her house. I know, I paint a lovely picture of Brixton normally but these things happen. She is hopefully receiving some support from social services who have been dragging their heels for months however, currently our little bear is with an interim minder and shortly after that will be enrolling in a new nursery.

The new minder is also very lovely and has the added bonus of looking after one of spud's very best friends - however somewhere along the line this little angel began a hitting phase and the spud is very keen to emulate her, resultantly blows are raining down all over the place these days and one can't sit still without coming under serious threat of a beating. He hasn't quite got the hang of the whole hitting thing though. Apart from the fact he hits like a girl (well, he has learned from one), he seems to think that hitting is supposed to be a gleeful romp through joysville and will happily squeeze behind one on the sofa and administer a light but regular whopping to squeals of laughter, until he is forcibly removed from one's vicinity. If he could concentrate on my shoulder muscles I wouldn't mind so much but the arc of his swing lands on one's kidneys and so for now, he Must Be Stopped.

It's not all S&M round here though. He's very in to being clean and spends significant amounts of time tiptoing on his little step in the bathroom, washing his hands. He wipes down tables and can spend a happy 10 minutes brushing his teeth while sitting on his potty. To add to this, recently we've had a whole slough of new words. Not that he's going to be giving his friend Einstein a run for his money any day soon but there are new nouns entering his vocabulary all the time. Today it was 'stairs' ('dair'), yesterday it was door ('door' unnervingly), he said 'car-key' with deep joy today and he's managed 'boo' for 'blue' as well.

This last was because he can't yet say 'nail polish' so he opened the bathroom cabinet and stood in front of it pointing at the bottle and saying 'boooo.... Mummy.... boooo.... Mummy BOOO! BOOO!' until I took down the bottle of blue nail varnish and, er, touched up his toes. Well, they were getting a little chipped. I tried to only do one but after I did it he pointed at the next one and the next one and... the note from his childminder on Tuesday read 'Charlie didn't want to get his hands dirty painting'; Wednesday it read 'Charlie planted a seed but he didn't like getting his hands dirty and today, it read 'Charlie didn't want to get his hands dirty playing with the clay so he showed the others his toes while they played'.

Oh yes, no problems with my son.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Flock of Seagulls to Haircut 100

Random musings from a random week.

Time is flying a teensy bit too quickly for me at the moment and I'm not talking about the sudden onset of childhood in my baby but rather the sudden onset of Thursday, which seems to be the only time I have to sit down and think. It's because I sneakily have Friday and most of Monday off every week and trying to cram work into the other three days just makes them melt away.

Unlike my midriff. As I don't have time to exercise (hell, I don't have time to brush my hair most days) I've attempted a sort of cack-handed diet consisting of a big healthy breakfast, a light lunch and then... well then it all falls to bits as firstly I join the spud in his pre-bedtime snack which alternates between fruit and icecream and then after dinner I fill up on dessert, which alternates between icecream and, well, more icecream.

Mmmm ...icecream... I'm surprised that the word hasn't entered the spud's repertoire as he knows EXACTLY what comes out of an icecream van, which cafe's in our area have an icecream counter and that, if he stands in the kitchen and points at the freezer shouting 'tha! tha! tha!' for long enough,I will break down and join him in a bucket of the stuff. He knows my weak spots, does my little spudling.

It's not all ice-cream. Sadly. Recently he's come out with a new word - 'ggeh' for 'egg', which actually means 'soft boiled egg and soldiers please Mummy' (or at least that's what I like to pretend. It probably really means 'Woman! Make me an egg NOW!'). Either way, he has been quite addicted to boiled egg and soldiers since Mum introduced them to him. He can now open the fridge and pretty much reach everything in it and yesterday, in the middle of refusing his dinner, he demanded 'Ggeh! Mummy! Ggeh!' got down from the table, went to the fridge, tiptoed down an egg and, before I could grab it from him with visions of egg all over the flat, he walked to the cupboard, pulled out the small saucepan, put the egg into it and handed it to me to put on the stove. Once it was cooked he ate the entire thing along with TWO slices of toast soldiers and then went on to finish the rest of his dinner, as though I'd made him a dinner deal that he had to honour.

We make deals like that over icecream normally. If he refuses dinner I can get him to eat at least half by promising him icecream - and sometimes he'll eat the lot if I give him a spoonful of icecream in between his peas.

I know that this would make most nutritionists shake their heads in despair but as his main snacks are raw veggies, fruits and seeds I'm not going to worry quite yet. Plus, it's difficult to refuse him when it is such a simple joy to sit next to each other eating our icecreams and giggling together over the drips, or to lie in the grass getting sticky and using our cones to point out planes.

They say childhood is fleeting but I don't know... I've managed to stretch mine out for more than 40 years and thankfully, I have an excuse to drag it out just that little bit longer now.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

A snip in time

Well, it's happened. The spud has had a haircut.

The balance of comments on my previous post suggested, or rather, my READING of them suggested that we leave the spud with his curls until such time as they become unmanageable. This tallied with my own desire, which was to never ever ever cut his hair ever ever so he could be strong like Samson to prioritise his comfort above all things. Ahem.

That his hair was reaching critical mass became painfully evident on Tuesday when - and to my chagrin I do not have a picture of this - his childminder delivered him to me with his hair in a perfect little topknot on the top of his head as it had been blowing in his eyes all day. When I say 'perfect little topknot', what I mean is that all his hair, every last bit, was captured in a hair elastic on the top of his head and he looked... like... er... a little girl.

Swiftly, I got the message.

Tuesday night, while the spud was happily playing in his bath, the Frog cut off his lovely locks and, it appears, with them went a whole host of conceptions I had obviously been building up in my twisted little motherhood brain about him being, oh, I don't know, the second coming, the light of the world, you know, All That Stuff. He got out of the bath and suddenly, I was incontrovertably the mother of a small boy. No wonder a good hairdresser costs the earth - if a few curls can turn an ordinary child into an angelic cherub, just imagine what a good haircut could do for the likes of me?

The spud of course doesn't know that a massive, radical change has happened to him. He continues to make the same faces but to be honest, they look a little strange now, as though some other, older child has stepped in to imitate him.

This older child is also amazingly tall. This morning while lying on his changing table having a new nappy installed he casually reached up with his feet and turned on the light, a switch which, the last time I recall, he had to stand on tiptoe on the table just to reach.

Am I nuts? I put his trousers on this morning, a pair which I thought I had to roll up three times and they don't need rolling up at all. They're for 3 years olds. What the hell are those scissors made of anyway?

Thursday, August 07, 2008

Going Potty

Hi folks! I'm just online today to crow about two things. Yes yes, that's right, the title gave it away but I'm going to tell you anyway. Ahem.

Firstly, I am as you can see able to access Blogger again -magically my access came back and everything is well, meaning that all my favourite blogs will be getting a vist or two in the next week (there are so many, how can I keep up?!).

Secondly (and how I've managed to keep this as second in line I have no idea) the spud demanded to use his potty last night and then... used it! Hooray! He may not use it again, I screamed so loudly and so happily that he nearly pooed on the floor poor little bear. There he was doing a little wee and then the trumpets went off and his Mum squealed and danced and kissed him on the cheek and shouted for his Dad and there he was, all little and vulnerable looking as though he just might not bother again.

Still, today although he refused the potty, he pointed at the loo and stood all manly beside it but when he realised that he would never clear the rim he got all put off and walked around clutching himself for ages afterwards until he was finally able to let go. In the bath. Well he's not quite two yet.

That's that. I'm off camping for the weekend, wish me well. I'm leaving my spudlet and his frog sire alone together and while most women when leaving their husband and two year old behind for the weekend would expect to come home to a house full of unwashed dishes, smears and trainsets, I'm most likely going to come back to an apartment which has had everything Put Away. The spud will be filthy, snotty and won't have had his face washed since the moment I left... but the house will be frighteningly tidy and in need of a woman's mess touch to bring it back to life.

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

A slip in time...

**NOTE** I cannot access any Blogger sites at all from home including mine, yours, if you’re on blogger, or my link to your site if it’s on this page... I’ll come by when this gets sorted out but for now am posting via work

Today was THIS kind of day...

On Mondays the Frog and I split the day and I get the afternoon shift. I pick spud up from the Frog’s studio after lunch and he, the spud, that is (although what my Frog gets up to in his studio without us is anyone’s guess) generally falls asleep on the way home, allowing me an hour or two to potter about. This morning I was up to my elbows in a shirty email to a client when my alarm went off. At this point, sitting in my cellar bunker, I usually have a vivid visual image of being me, only me in a massive underground bunker with a broadcasted, Thunderbirds-style countdown ‘Ten Minutes to pick up the Spud... whoop whoop whoop... Nine Minutes and Fifty seconds...” and so on.

Just indulge me.

Anyway, so I dashed off my shirty email and ran up the stairs, collected my bag, keys, phone and just then, the Frog rang to chivvy me along. And I forgot that the final step in my process was to put on my shoes. Just far enough away from the flat that going back would have meant being late, I thought to myself: ‘Hm’, I thought, ‘My sandals feel comfier than u... oh bugger’.

Yes, sadly, it was that kind of a day...

My next stellar move was to soothe my spud at around three after a nasty wake-up (any wake up is nasty if you're a spud) by lying him on the big bed and stroking his back. We woke up at ten to five. While I thought it was me who had a lot to do, I was sadly misinformed. The spud dashed off while I was straightening my face and he came back lugging the
Argos catalogue – no mean feat for those of you who don’t know it, this is 1000 pages and bigger than our local phone book and needs to be dropped at least three times.

He leafed happily through it pointing and making noises until suddenly he had an important phone call. Unbelievable. One second he was pointing at a shaver and going ‘Oh!’ and the next he was clutching his hand to his ear and saying ‘Ohhhh.... ohhhhh... wow.... hmmm... hmmm...’ and he wandered off talking into his hand and completely ignoring me. I cannot think WHERE he gets it from, honestly...

Anyway, after that I got the message that my day had been trying to post through my mental letterbox and we spent the rest of the afternoon blowing bubbles in the garden and cooking his dinner together. No phone calls, no emails, no hard shoes. I think it’s time I cut a few of the urgencies out of my days and started paying a little more attention to the gentler things in life. Like my slippers. And naps. And my spudlet.