A Sit Down and a Cuppa, Part 3

I’m back again for some good old-fashioned rambling!

It must shamelessly be said; I am using this as a warm-up for some writing work today. After drifting somewhat pointlessly for a couple of weeks after The Bean Jar came out (Amazon link here, blah blah blah) with little to no idea of what to do next, writing-wise, I’ve got a good old plan in my head.

Um, I’m not actually going to say what it is.

I’m just referring to it as The Secret Project for now, just in case I lose my nerve and give up before I’ve really started (a very real possibility, come on, this is me we’re talking about). More information will come soon, considering I’m hoping said Secret Project will be released in July, but for now… *air of mystery*

Yeah, I’m not a very mysterious person, but that will have to do.

Today, I am sitting in my usual Caffe Nero, with my not-usual cuppa: a chai latte. See, I had three wisdom teeth out this week and I feel I should play it safe with the hot drinks. I feel a nice chai latte will be soothing and pleasant on the gaping holes in my mouth where teeth used to be. Not that I’d know, yet; I’m leaving it to get very very cool before I even attempt to put it in my mouth.

dav

And yes, I do indeed have cake. So far the cake has proven a lovely soft success on my poor mouth, and the hope that at least this tooth extraction might lead to a bit of weight loss is drifting merrily out of the window.

Continue reading

Pushchair Review: Maxi-Cosi Adorra

There’s a pattern to my poverty: the poorer I get, the more random competitions I enter in the vague hope that somehow, I might win myself a little treat. I never usually do.

So it was an absolutely fabulous surprise to get a call from Pushchair Expert a few weeks back: I’d only gone and won a brand new Maxi-Cosi pushchair! I was pretty gobsmacked – talk about a treat. And I know, I know, I’m the one who bangs on about babywearing all the time. It’s true: I am indeed a big fan of carrying my baby rather than pushing him round in a pram. But as a family, we’ve still always used the pushchair a lot. Neither my husband nor I can drive: on occasions where we need to be out for a long time, or we have to go a long way, or have to do a big shop, we do resort to Ted’s wheels. And if we knew if we ever happen to have another baby, we’d definitely need to get a new pram – the one we’ve had since Ted was born is battered beyond recognition. So we were absolutely delighted to accept this beautiful new Adorra pushchair from Maxi-Cosi, and now we’ve had it just over a week, I thought I’d do a little review.

First Impressions

I saw the delivery driver coming from the living room window, and I practically bit his hand off signing for my glorious new treat.

The pushchair arrived in a surprisingly small box – that picture is misleading, makes it look enormous! I could easily heft it into the house by myself. My mum was visiting at the time, and we were going to take Ted out for a walk. Perfect! It only took a couple of minutes for my husband and I to extricate the entire pushchair apparatus from the box and put it together, mostly without having to resort to the instructions – just a matter of sliding the wheels into place, and clipping the hood onto the main frame.

Continue reading

The Babywearing Adventures: Part 3

Last time I talked about the absolutely fabulous Close Caboo Lite – my first real excursion into babywearing. Now we’re getting to just over a year ago…

The Close Caboo was a success in so many ways. I absolutely loved it, and so did Ted. But there was one person in our house who didn’t.

My husband.

Kev wanted to carry Teddy too – he was the first one of us to manage to successfully navigate the Aldi Carrier of Doom, after all. And anyone with eyes could see how happy Ted was in the Caboo.

But it wasn’t for Kev. He didn’t like the fact it needed to be tied, and felt insecure without buckles to fall back on. Of course, at this point, with Ted around three months old, I was still having many a middle-of-the-night online shopping session (my delight when I got a nearly-new Jumperoo on eBay for twenty quid woke the sleeping baby). I was straight online to research my fingers off.

Kev was working in a coffee shop at the time, and a couple came in with a baby in a carrier – he told me it had looked so comfortable, and the woman doing the carrying had managed to flip it on and off so easily, he had to ask what it was. And funnily enough, it was the same carrier I’d been looking at myself.

Continue reading

The Babywearing Adventures: Part 2

Last time I talked about my experiences with the awful Aldi sling that pops up in their baby events: now, I’m going to actually start talking about some good slings! My first properly positive babywearing experiences.

I’d come to the conclusion: I want to wear my baby, and I don’t want to do it in this.

Even though Teddy was always a pretty good sleeper, I was not – I spent a large percentage of every night until he was approximately five months old, insomniacally browsing eBay and Mumsnet and researching every baby product under the sun. That included slings, and after lots and lots of reading, I decided on…

Continue reading

The Babywearing Adventures: Part 1

I swore I would never be one of ‘those’ people.

I’m hardly what you’d call an earth mother. I stopped breastfeeding after less than two weeks, and I’ve never been averse to frisbeeing the odd biscuit towards Teddy’s face to keep him quiet. When I weaned him, I used puree pouches when we were out and about to save time. I’d sooner eat my own left leg than use cloth nappies.

When I was pregnant, I thought that attitude would translate entirely to ‘babywearing’. I even scoffed at the word. Hippy-dippy claptrap, I thought. Why give it a fancy title? It’s just wrapping your baby up in a complicated piece of material and thinking you’re it.

We decided we’d get some kind of baby carrier – just a cheap one, but definitely a structured one with plenty of reassuring buckles, clips, velcro, whatever it took to keep the baby firmly strapped on. I wasn’t really keen on the idea at all, but having to rely on public transport to get around, and our local train station being up four flights of stairs with no lift, I thought it could come in useful.

The first time I bit the bullet and strapped Ted in, he was about two weeks old. And I’ve not really looked back since. Over a few posts, I’m going to discuss my adventures in babywearing – I’m going to review a few different slings and carriers, and explain just how they’ve made my life so much easier since I became a mother.

Continue reading

Semi-Annual Life Update

Oh look, I’m back again!

God, I’m a terrible blogger. Two posts then off I go again.

I believe the last time I wrote I was six months pregnant, home from a lovely – if sweaty – trip to Germany for a pounding heavy metal festival. I was sunburnt, knackered, but excited for my impending maternity leave. And, obviously, my baby.

He’s here.

Obviously, he’s here. It’s been a year. A year!

Edward Albert Peter Robinson. Known as Teddy. My boy Ted.

He came into the world on November 1st, 2016 (somewhat reluctantly, but that’s a story for another time) and instantly turned all our lives upside down.

I know, I know, terrible cliché. But it’s so, so true.

In the space of a minute, my world refocussed on its axis. I don’t revolve around the sun anymore. I revolve around this tiny tornado of a little boy.

SD9C6358

Teddy at six months old – isn’t he a stunner?

Teddy is eight months old now – nearly nine months, actually – and I know, I know, I’m his mother, I’m biased, but isn’t he just the most beautiful thing you’ve ever seen? He’s a proper sturdy little boy; when he was born he weighed nearly ten pounds, and he likes his food. He’s never been one to go in for weight loss, just like his mother.

He’s always been fabulous when it comes to anything physical – he rolled over before he turned four months old and was full on crawling just before six months. Now he pulls himself up on the furniture and scoots along on his feet, and can toddle along if he’s pushing something in front of him. He won’t hold my hands and do it, though – he’s somehow fiercely independent at the same time as being quite a clingy mama’s boy.

He’s a right little mischief already. He loves to climb, and sometimes when I’m sitting on the floor I think he’s come over for a lovely cuddle… Nope, he wants to use me as a ladder to get up onto the sofa and thus onto the desk to play with the computer mouse. Or onto the windowsill to try and knock the lamp onto my head. He’s worked out which button on the DVD player makes the tray come out and will stand in front of it for ages pressing it over and over again. If I let him, he’d spend half his life watching the toilet flush, chewing on some toilet roll at the same time, of course.

Doting mama, much? Of course I am.

How have I spent my maternity leave?

It’s been quite a blur, actually. Those hazy newborn days, where I was scared to sleep in case Ted stopped breathing in his Moses basket. They seem like so long ago, now. Years, not months. I got through the entire series of The Crown on Netflix before Ted was two weeks old, and I couldn’t tell you half of what happens.

Ted’s always been such a good baby, though – I couldn’t breastfeed, but he took to the bottle immediately, has been weaning gloriously, and has been mostly sleeping through the night since around six months – I really don’t have anything to complain about. Maternity leave, which has just come to an end, is going to be forever in my mind as a peaceful, happy time. I just wish it could have lasted forever!

Kev has been absolutely amazing, he’s an incredible dad. Right from when we got back from hospital and he cooked me a ridiculously expensive steak to keep my iron levels up after a haemorrhage and a blood transfusion, he’s been hands-on and fabulous. Teddy adores him and now I’m back at work two days a week, he’s over the moon to have his ‘boy days’.

I’ve been so well supported, and had such a good baby, I feel like I really should have been more productive on maternity leave. I’ve been writing, almost non-stop in fact. Ted’s never had a problem snoozing in his pram in coffee shops while I scribble away. In fact, that’s exactly what he’s doing now, while I type.

I went off onto my leave with the grandiose idea that I’d end it with at least one book finished. Well, I kind of achieved that. At least, I finally finished editing my Guernsey-based leap year story… but I’ve hit a massive block, trying to make the synopsis work before I send it out. My other two giant projects… I’ve delved into them from time to time, but the inspiration keeps running out and they both remain unfinished. I wrote pages and pages of notes for two new writing projects, only for the impetus to bugger off as soon as I actually started the writing process. I even tried vlogging for a while, but the pressure to look human enough to film was a bit much, especially with Ted’s napping time decreasing by the day.

All in all, though, I’m not hugely bothered by the fact I’ve not technically ‘done’ much on maternity leave. I’ve not finished a book; I’ve spammed everyone on Instagram with countless baby photos instead. These nine months might not have been productive, but they’ve been precious. I’ve got to know this adorable, daft, cuddly little human that Kev and I somehow managed to make, and it’s been the best nine months of my life.

So what about this blog? Am I going to write this and then trot merrily off into radio silence once again?

It’s entirely possible. But I have a whole massive list of things I’m dying to write about, and this is the place for them. Oh, I might be a baby spammer now, but I’m a chatty one. And, frankly, I think people are getting sick of me rambling out loud. So it might have to go on here; far easier to tune me out in print than in person!

I’m going to end this post with a couple of collages of Teddy-pictures. You know, just in case anyone reading this happens to have avoided my Instagram for the past eight months. You’re not escaping the baby spam that easily.

IMG_20170721_092526

IMG_20170721_092620

IMG_20170721_092738

IMG_20170721_092823