Friday, 30 November 2012

chicken pox

Apparently chicken pox comes in a varying range of severity...tiny Teddy has it extremely mildly.

I am grateful to my younger sister for spotting it, I had originally wondered if the spots were 'the pox' but dismissed them as insect bites when they didn't spread.

He has maybe 10 spots in all, on his feet and legs and two on his cheek.

It has not bothered him, only caused a bout of explosive pooey nappies this week. It is a good age to get it I think, he is unable to scratch and does not seem to be itchy.

I hope this is our dose done and dusted!

Wednesday, 28 November 2012

standing tall, part 2

Little Teddy, you are rapidly becoming an adventurous worry for your Mama.

This morning I checked on you when you called out at 3:40am, tucked you in & left you to settle again. You were snug in your sleeping bag, cozy under your blanket. When you woke to begin the day 5:45am I skipped into your room, excited to see your smiley face. What did I find?

You. Standing. Sans Sleeping Bag. Leaning. On. The. Cot. Bars.

How did you wriggle out of your little bag? It was still tucked in...cozy under your blanket.

When did you get so tall? I lowered your cot, lest I find you crawling about your room tomorrow morning!

Why are you a climber? I feel this is the question I will most often ask myself over the next few years...

Tuesday, 27 November 2012

little piggy

Teddy, the sheer volume of food you consume three times a day regularly astounds me. I am positive it is well within the bounds of normal, but wow. Wow.

Today I felt like a bystander at an all-you-can-eat buffet - I held the spoon while you chowed on down! Maybe it is a growth spurt...maybe you are destined to be 6 feet tall like your Papy - you are long and lean.

You are pulling yourself up on furniture now and getting faster at your commando scoot every day. You are up on all fours most of the day, shunting forward then getting frustrated and deciding to slide along on your tummy instead. To suggest you are active is an understatement.

So for now I will feed you up until you are satisfied and wonder where you put it all...

expressions of love

It is with some (ok...perhaps a lot) of sadness I write this post. Something I treasured has come to an end and although it is time to move on, I cannot help but feel a little glum about the subject. What I am talking about is giving up expressing breastmilk for have in his food or in the freezer in case (this has never happened) he wakes for a feed and I don't get home in time. I have 90ml left in the freezer as an emergency stash...unless I need to express for a specific feeding I will miss I have decided enough is enough.

I have made this choice for a couple of reasons:

(a) pumping ain't what it used to be...gone are the days of getting 100ml in 10 minutes, of my breasts making more just because I pumped regularly for a couple of days. I tried numerous methods of increasing the supply so I'd have surplus, but was having limited success for much effort;

(b) I realised I really didn't need to be stressing myself over getting approximately 60ml to mix in Teddy's breakfast. Breastfeeding (mixed with ample sleep deprivation) has caused me to lose my baby weight (yay!) plus some (not so yay!), so adding more sleep deprivation so I could pump more created a catch-22 situation...I kept losing weight which I do not have to lose. He is nearly 8 months old and well established on solids (eating me out of house and home in fact) so 60ml of breastmilk is really neither here nor there for the little tyke;

(c) I have more than enough milk for Teddy to have during his feeds, of which he has between 4 and 5 per day, and I suspect he is drinking much more than I could ever express. So all that effort was very much a drop in the ocean!

I have a rather large tendency to feel guilty when my pre-baby plans go out the window now I have an actual baby. I had thought I would continue to mix his cereal with breastmilk for 3 months after he weaned (that being the freezer shelf life of the liquid gold)...this is not to be.

I am happy I will be able to feel a little sad and perhaps a little guilty about this decision, but will bounce back fairly quickly. I feel such a tremendous gratitude to have such a successful breastfeeding relationship with my son, I realise other women do not have it so easy. I feel such overwhelming joy at the thought that I will reach my original goal of feeding for 12 months and excited I will probably exceed it.

I treasure every moment I have with Teddy snuggled close, sharing something only we can share. I adore the knowledge that I helped create this life, I kept him safe while he grew inside my belly, I birthed him the way I felt nature intended for me to and that I am able to give him the best of myself every day.

Monday, 26 November 2012

late afternoon naps

Teddy, you did not sleep all that well today. Unless you count the two 20 minute car rides, during which you slept great!

Mummy was also tired by this afternoon so fed you lazily on the bed, your final feed before a little bath & your bed...we fell asleep, you & I. When I awoke, it was 6:45pm. In my sleepy haze I took a second to realise we were running quite late for a proper didn't mind though. You were bathed & cozy in your bed in record time, set to complete your slumber.

I assume we will both sleep well tonight...I wonder what tomorrow will bring for us? I can't wait to find out - I hope it includes a snuggly nap...

Sunday, 25 November 2012


This afternoon was the hardest of the four week cycle - it was 'Papy leaving day'. For the fifth time, off he went for another three weeks.

The house is always lonely on these particular Sunday afternoons. It is now a much better looking lonely house, on account of the smashing new kitchen. But that is beside the point...

We often escape to the bustle of a cafe or a neighbour's to break up the emptiness. Today we did the latter briefly, but chose also to withdraw into our own little haven...mixing napping with feeding with playing with watching cricket on telly.

Yes, it is lonely. But tiny Teddy & I have each other. And Papy is only a phone call away.

Saturday, 24 November 2012

45 minutes of moments

I have many fabulous moments on any given day. Most of these involve either my tiny Teddy or my husband (when he is home...Skype is a lifesaver but the maker of fabulous moments it is not)...yesterday however, had one of the best forty-five minutes of moments I have ever experienced. I was going to share this as a series of posts, however thought one, perhaps very long one, was appropriate.

I'm not sure about you, but sometimes when I am having the most glorious of times I feel as if I am out of myself and everything slows down...I feel as if I am savouring the seconds to such an extent the experience of them is like a series of memories...whilst I am busy making them! I will try to convey these moments, but am not at all sure I will do them justice...

Teddy has been having ever-shorter afternoon naps of late. The combination of heat (29 degrees plus at the moment) & activity (perfecting his crawling technique too tempting) has meant when he does fall asleep - usually after getting up for a nappy change - it is in a position so uncomfortable he wakes after only half an hour, annoyed at his discomfit*. The moment he wakes & calls out is the beginning of some of my favourite moments to date.

In an effort to encourage more sleep, I take my slightly hysterical baby onto my bed. We lay down and he feeds. I give him a terry square (aka 'spew rag') to cuddle and more days than not, he is back to sleep in seconds. Yesterday was one such day.

He/I slept for fifteen minutes on one breast...he woke so I woke & we changed sides. He stays awake, but very relaxed...gazing at me with big blue eyes. Intently drinking in my face. Cue 'Moment Time Slowed Down'.

For the first time in a long time, Teddy rolled gently away & stayed there...looking at me, staring into my eyes. It was warm, fuzzy, lovely & exceptional. He smiled...lips still full, tongue visible between them. I am not a person who cries lightly (I mainly save it for being so angry I want to explode) but I welled up. We shared this moment for a long, long time. For me, time ceased to exist. I could hear the plasterers working away in the husband screwing our new kitchen together...but it all just melted away. Tiny Teddy & I were sharing something I will always cherish.

We giggled at each other...I tickled him. We babbled - speaking that special language only babies are privy to. We sang little rhymes...Teddy's stuffed friends played hide and seek behind my legs. He sat on my tummy & kissed my face. He showed no mercy...pulling my hair roughly (I wonder if I will have any left soon...) to place my face exactly where he wanted it to be. He bounced on my middle & played with the tags of each of his toys with one very concentrated finger.

Finally, after our own special eternity, we wandered out to find Papy.

Later, long after the plasterers had left, I commented to Guy: "This is going to sound a bit soppy...but...the forty-five minutes I had with Teddy on the bed were...well...beautiful."

*"Have you tried moving him?" - yes, yes I have. Unlike nighttime, repositioning during a nap ensures a Teddy who wakes then refuses to go back to sleep.

Tuesday, 20 November 2012

a new world

Teddy, you have been amazingly patient this past fortnight. Papy & I are renovating our little house...your world is changing rapidly. Walls are gone, a new kitchen is being is not the same place at all!

Limited to a very small playground on the floor...or in your exersaucer...or highchair...or on & I yearn for the day you can roam free once more.

toothy grin

Gummy no more, tooth number two on its way skyward! Spotted today, it will complete the pair of bottom middle toothy-pegs.

I am sure the rest are not too far behind...again, I am wistfully dreaming of my wee baby son...all new & soft, with wobbly lips & gassy smiles...

standing tall

Teddy pulled himself up to standing today. Twice. Once on me...the second to get at the pile of laundry on the couch.

The second typically happened during those moments my back is turned! Already a seasoned climber (despite not crawling on hands & knees yet, commando still the norm), Teddy's upward motion has now increased exponentially...

Both proud & a little teary at the thought of how quickly he is growing up...he'll be a big boy soon...

Wednesday, 14 November 2012

Mummy's boy

Caught between smug elation tiny Teddy wants me (& only me) all the time & slight panic this separation anxiety phase will stay forever...

Monday, 12 November 2012

whole lotta love

Continuing on our excessive dribble theme (despite his amber necklace)...

Teddy adores his Mama. This is obvious. How I know? He kisses me at every opportunity. An extremely wet, open-mouthed face plant anywhere on me. Nose, cheek, mouth, forehead, knee, eyebrow (that one is interesting because I can see it happening!)...the list goes on.

If we are outside, add 'cold' to the list too. I routinely wonder why my face is damp, then think "ohhhhh...right...".

Whilst being carried, kiss. Whilst busy playing on the floor together, kiss. Whilst climbing all over to try and get something (usually something he isn't allowed to touch), stop and kiss. Then keep climbing!

Whilst snuggling in Mama's bed on chilly mornings...kiss. The best snuggles after all, are bubby snuggles.

Sunday, 11 November 2012


Spent a long time on the floor today rolling around with 7 month old Teddy, blowing raspberries at each other. He is better than me (having access to a better supply of saliva!), however I believe we each covered the other in a satisfactory amount of dribble.

 Experiencing pure joy. Blissful.

Friday, 9 November 2012

singing in the rain

We were productive today, tiny Teddy. Mummy thought it would be a great idea to get out into the fresh air...strapped on the baby carrier and off we went. To the corner store. For a drink of juice, because you know they stock Mummy's favourite.

Off we toddled, you gazing around at the world. Me chatting away to you, or randomly humming a tune, or singing something silly for you.

Halfway up the street, the skies opened on us and it poured with rain. Ha! We sought shelter under a tree and you were interested in experiencing a rain shower firsthand for the first time. The rain got heavier and our protective tree got drippier. We snuggled close and turned to melt further into our temporary saviour. You amused yourself batting the leaves, not at all concerned with the drips running down your nose.

Finally, after a little while, the rain slowed down enough for us to continue on our way. Let's face it - we were already rather wet (and drowned-rat-looking) so why not?

Once we arrived, you busied yourself with grabbing at Mummy's purse as she paid for her juice. Not bothered in the least about our hilarious hairstyles or wet cheeks.

Teddy - today you were caught in your first shower of rain. Given your wonder at this phenomenon, I hope this summer throws a few more our way...

Thursday, 8 November 2012

tiny turtle face

Tiny Teddy, I am delighted by your tiny turtle face...your stock standard expression. Lower lip sucked right in, cheeks puffed out...looking around with interest at anything and everything.

You look like a tiny cartoon turtle.

I heart Teddy my tiny turtle...and his tiny turtle face.

Tuesday, 6 November 2012

slumber, part 3

Tiny Teddy...the emotions you stir in me are numerous, wonderful and large. The way you smile at me, the look of concentration when you are focused, the little bird expression when you open your mouth for the spoon...listening to you coo to yourself when you wake up in the morning, in the moments before you realise you are hungry!

I stirred this morning...still dozy...opened my eyes to what seemed like extremely bright light. It was. The sun was up, had been for a little while. It was 5am. 5 AM! I could not believe it - after all these months of waking once, twice, four plus times per had done it. Slept through - 7pm until 5am.

In typical sleep-deprived-mother style, I have attempted to consider all possible reasons for this sudden change of heart from you. I know I will never know. I know you just fly by the seat of your nappy, taking each moment as it comes. But I did take pains to ensure you were in bed after the same little ritual at the same time. Just in case.

Only time will tell whether last night was a fluke or not. For now, in the moments before I too go to sleep, I will believe it is the start of something beautiful...

Monday, 5 November 2012

bonjour - bon nuit

Part of the joy of children I think is having fun with all the wonderful things about the world we can help them discover. My husband and I, some time ago, decided we would try our very best to raise our children as close to bilingual as they could be...given they will live the majority of their childhood in an English-speaking country with their parents both native english speakers learning another language themselves.

We chose french to be 'our' language...we enrolled in classes and to be honest, can hold our own in a simple conversation. Due to being the go-to person for a very tiny person, I am unable to attend a formal course - but am lucky enough to have a wonderful tutor. She is also a mother, and we have been having great fun with nursery rhymes and songs etc for Teddy. My husband (pre-FIFO) kept up the more formal education and is much better than I am!

One of mine and Teddy's favourite little games involves a back-and-forth of "Tu dit...bonjour!" ("You say...hello!"), "Tu dit...ça va?" ("You are you?")...and so on and so forth...I also try to speak as much in french to him as I can, knowing he will absorb english almost automatically as that is our native tongue.

Although speaking simply to an infant (no matter how much babble you get back) is not extending my knowledge, I am oh-so-smug to know we are helping broaden his language experience - at a time when his brain is starting to form all the important links that will make up his ability to converse later on.

And hopefully, one day, he will pass this appreciation for other cultures on to his children.

Sunday, 4 November 2012

knowing you knowing me

Thanks to the amazing Wild Nectarine Dreams for tagging me in the 'knowing you knowing me' series...I'm new to blogging and can't believe what a fantastic little (well, HUGE) world I've been oblivious to all this time. The idea is to get to know a bit about the goes:


  • Nominate five other blogs in your post ( All must have less than 250 subscribers)
  • Post five random facts about yourself.
  • Answer the five questions that the tagger has asked you, then list your own five questions to ask others.
  • Let your 5 friends know you have tagged them by commenting on their blog/tweeting them.

My five random facts

  1. I am a Phd student of Quantitative Finance, currently on maternity leave.
  2. My grandmother taught me to cross-stitch when I was little & I have ever since, I can also knit & crochet.
  3. Aboyne in Scotland is my happy place.
  4. I am gluten and dairy free - well, 95% of the time (haloumi cheese is my Achilles heel!).
  5. I dream of the day I get around to growing my own fruit & veges.

My 5 questions to answer

  1. One thing that brings you joy - a tree-lined walk in the early morning/evening
  2. One resolution you had for 2012 - enjoy my baby (yep), work toward finishing my thesis (nope)
  3. One thing that inspires you - all the lovely blogs I have just discovered, oddly I am much more productive now!
  4. If you could have dinner with anyone in history who would you choose - Cleopatra (I have always wanted to travel to Egypt)
  5. One thing you would tell your 16 year old self - you are about to make some big mistakes, but you won't regret any of them...oh, and your boyfriend is definitely not 'the one'!
Tag! You're it...

I am tagging the following five people to take part:

Just For Daisy
Sharolyn Joy Newington
The wholefood mama
Little Blue Wren
Vintage Betsy

Your five questions to answer

  1. What genre of music do you love most?
  2. If you could master a new skill, what would it be?
  3. Are you adore paperbacks or do you love your e-reader?
  4. The word that best describes you is...
  5. How do you like to spend lazy Sunday mornings?
Hope you have as much fun with this as I did!

Much love

Saturday, 3 November 2012

slumber, part 2

Last night I wrote about my sleeping baby. Tonight I will write again about my sleeping baby...

Teddy has been unusually grouchy today...quick to smile and laugh, but equally quick to scream outrage. Unlike himself, I can only put it down to 'teething' - a seemingly mythical beast that has reared its head after his first tooth has appeared...whatever the reason, I decided to begin our little bedtime routine early tonight as it had been a big day full of big emotion.

Bathtime at 6pm, followed by a feed at quarter past - proving Mummy always knows best and it was indeed an early-to-bed night, tiny T was asleep at my breast shortly thereafter. He has the longest and most lush eyelashes, fluttered lightly closed. His little tongue lapping (it pokes out a little when he feeds) every now and again, just to remind me he was there.

Enjoying the moment, treasuring his little body on my lap, I was aware that I didn't want his little catnap to last too long - lest he not settle well when placed in his cot. I gently removed my nipple, his eyes sleepily opening as realisation dawned. Shaking with the shock of his loss, having been rudely interrupted, tiny Teddy opened his mouth - not so subtly hinting that feeding was not yet over. I repositioned him to take the other breast, his eyes immediately closing before I even lifted my shirt, mouth wide open in preparation.

Little tongue lapping the air.

Once attached, his eyes fluttered open and he gazed into mine for the rest of the feed before collapsing into a deep slumber the moment his wee head hit his bed - bliss.

just keep swimming...

Imagine this in a Dory (from Finding Nemo) sing-song imagine keeping the enthusiasm while poor little Teddy howls his way through today's lesson. Poor dear, the mix of new teeth, getting up early this morning & a brisk breeze combined to make swimming less than fun.

Unfortunately for little Teddy, both his father and I feel it is of utmost importance to persevere with the swimming adventure - we spend at least a month every summer at the beach. Water familiarity and safety is non-negotiable! Such a pity he didn't enjoy last week or this week - he was an absolute champ for the first two.  

He is now quietly sleeping off the trauma...and I am looking forward to next week, as it can only be better.

Just keep swimming...just keep swimming...

Friday, 2 November 2012


Nothing so sweet & lovely as a sleeping baby. Teddy currently snoring gently, he rolls on his side toward me now when I adjust his blankets before turning in myself. A little mouth purses & starts sucking something found in his dreamland...

I am weary, temporarily a single mother (boy, do I realize how hard the amazing single mummies work - I take my hat off to each of them)...and so hopeful I will only be woken at 5:30am for a feed.

But a little (teeny tiny) part hopes he will need me more tonight, so I can snuggle his warm little body close...I am becoming ever more aware of how fleeting this time is.

bumps & bruises

This morning was a tad traumatic...for both Teddy & I. A few days ago I wrote about the newly acquired skill of crawling - turns out it is a little hazardous for new players!

In the space of an hour, an adventurous little boy had two very exciting accidents - big on fright, low on be fair, he does have an impressive mark on his forehead.

I suspect there is more of this to come...

Thursday, 1 November 2012

first tooth!

My little baby is gummy no more! Ok, well, maybe still quite gummy - but there is now a very sharp, very white little tooth poking up from his bottom gum. I would post a photo, but as I am not much of a photographer (and flat out getting a shot of him smiling on camera!) I thought a mouth shot would be beyond me...

Following the initial excitement of this afternoon's dental discovery, I thought it amazing little Teddy sprouted it without much of the upset I imagined would accompany such an event. A little cuddlier than usual, perhaps...definitely chewing everything in sight the last day or two...but no more grizzly or in pain or anything than normal. Teddy is one of the happiest and least-grizzly babies I know so there really was no drama. We were drama-less - in fact, I may have missed the whole event had he not shoved my finger in his mouth!

So grateful my little darling is himself while undergoing one of the biggest milestones of his babyhood - getting teeth!