All posts filed under: Parenting

Back to Work

Over the summer, I made the decision to return to work. I quit my previous job two years ago to spend more time at home with my family and help my son settle in at school. Many people said I’d be bored within six months, but I was soon offered a part-time job with a local magazine that I could do from home and that stopped me from going completely stir crazy. But, the hours I worked really only added up to one school-day a week so I spent a lot of time watching box-sets of The Good Wife and loading, unloading and reloading the dishwasher. It was during one of those wash cycles that I realised I would load and unload the dishwasher again the next day and again the day after that; and then I stopped to ask myself – is this really my life now? Is this what I am going to do for all my days? Well, probably yes, unless someone invents plates that clean themselves, but I wanted more. I …

When you have a baby and you wake up one morning and he is SIX

I took the summer off. It was not a planned blogging holiday, more that one week turned into two that turned into six and before I knew it, here we are in September and I have not written a word since July. The only excuse I have is that I was having too much fun – the fact a lot of this fun happened in areas without adequate wi-fi reception is sheer coincidence. It was a big few weeks for us as my BABY finally turned 6! The youngest in his year, he has been eagerly awaiting this day since last September when all his school friends started celebrating their 6th birthdays for what seemed like an eternity. Although he will always be the baby of his class, and my heart, he is really no longer a baby at all anymore. He is a boy who has long not needed help to eat, wipe his own bum or pull up his socks. He loves dinosaurs – knows them all by name and can tell you which ones are carnivores, herbivores and omnivores. He also …

Parents Who Judge Other Parents

As parents, many of us have been on the receiving end of well-meaning parenting advice at some point and often from people who don’t have children of their own. Before I had my son, I certainly had my own idea of the kind of mum I would be; and now that I am one, the reality couldn’t be further away. I was going to be the parent with the well-behaved child, who ate everything on his plate, had impeccable manners and never a hair out-of-place. I was NEVER going to give him a dummy (I lasted 3-weeks), he was only going to eat fresh, locally sourced, organic food (pizza is our friend) and I would remain calm, patient and never raise my voice to him, EVER (hahahahahaha). None of us are perfect, but we are all doing the best we can with what we know. It is for the parent and child to work out such details as potty training methods, ways to discipline and breast or bottle feeding, together.  There is more than one way …

A Midnight Feast

Next to me in bed, my 5-year old is sleeping. His legs have kicked off the duvet and his right arm is slung across my chest. This is a new habit of ours whenever the Greek God(zilla) is away. He climbs in next to me, his pillow tucked under one arm and Bear snuggled tightly under the other, and we prop ourselves up on pillows to read stories. Tonight, I allowed a midnight feast, only we feasted at 7.45pm. He does not care that midnight is many hours away, he just wants to eat crackers and cucumber in bed.  It was also more of a snack than a feast, but for him the excitement comes from being able to do something that is usually forbidden. I sipped camomile tea beside him while he munched away and talked about dinosaurs between mouthfuls. He is quite the expert now. Last week, I found him organising a bucket of toy miniature dinosaurs into groups of carnivores, herbivores and omnivores! For days, I tiptoed nervously around them, scared to disturb the order for fear of having to spend the day googling ‘is …

Kids’ Artwork… and what to do with it?

Since my son could first hold a crayon between his chubby little fingers, he has been producing mini masterpieces of art. There are vibrant paintings, simple drawings and playful scribbles. Some were painted using his fingers, others with a sponge and a few even with a brush. The Christmas collection is made up of cotton-wool snowmen and tinsel trees, while the Easter display features cardboard egg boxes that have been painted a bold yellow and shaped into daffodils. There are geometric buses made out of cereal boxes, delicate hats created from coloured card, and abstract dried pasta collages. And, more just keeps coming. At first, I thought it would be great idea to create a home gallery, so started sticking his artwork to a plain white wall in our kitchen.  However, I made the mistake of securing these works of art on with blue-tack, which meant that they’d regularly peel off.  Our ‘feature’ wall did not look quite as striking as I’d hoped when bits of it started falling off onto the floor.  I was also forever picking blue-tack off my fingers, the pictures and the wall. However, …