Wednesday, 28 September 2011


Well since my last post A&D have had a further three sessions of pre-school and despite an absolute tantrum first thing one morning about not going we have had no tears at all.  I am so relieved as I hated leaving them so unsettled.  They seem to be really enjoying it too so in turn I am feeling much better and much more relaxed about it all.  I have even been the lucky recipient of some very lovely paintings and sticky pictures.  Yay me!

Saturday, 17 September 2011


You'll have to excuse the lack of posts this last week or so.  I have had an awful cough and cold for what seems like forever thus resulting in my sinuses driving me mad and not being up to much other than looking after A&D.

Anyway since my last post we have had a massive milestone in my little ones' lives, their first morning at pre-school!  They will be going for two mornings per week and I had been mentioning to them all over the summer that they would be going to pre-school in September and telling them about what they would be doing.  It seemed like ages away for a long time and then all of a sudden it crept up on me.  They had visited the pre-school a couple of times before the summer and so were familiar with it and very excited to be going on their first morning.  They weren't even interested when I dropped them off and told them that I was going home which was a relief. 

It felt quite alien not to have them with me at the shops or when I got home and to be able to do things without having to consider them.  I did manage to make lunch and tea and clean the lounge properly in peace though and those of you with kids will know that you don't get to clean things "properly" very often.

When I picked them up though after their first session, the staff did tell me that they had got a bit upset a short while after I left which bothered me because I knew that I would then have problems, especially with A, the next time that they went.  Well sure enough this week at both sessions we have had sobbing from A and "I don't want to go to pre-school Mommy."  So much so that they have had to literally peel her off me.  D isn't too bad and I am sure he would be absolutely fine if it weren't for A getting upset, but he adores her and seeing her upset upsets him.  Bless my little man. 

The tears are not good for Mommy's emotional state though especially as I have been feeling so poorly.  I have got in the car and cried both times that I have dropped them off this week.  The most annoying thing about this situation is that literally 10 minutes after I get home I get a phone call from the pre-school telling me that they are fine and then when I pick them up they have always enjoyed themselves and have lots to tell me.  The trials and tribulations of parenthood eh!  I am sure that they will get better with time though. (She says with her fingers crossed!)

From what I can gather so far they have:-
"Had snacks" - this is very important and the first thing they tell me every time I pick them up.  My two do love their food.
"Played with Rory" - the racing car I assume.
"Done singing" - Down in the Jungle I am assuming is one of the songs as I keep hearing it sung.
"Played cricket" - what they actually did was played outside and could see the children at the school playing rounders.
"Read a story about a tiger who ate all the food" - my mom who is a teaching assistant tells me that this must have been The Tiger Who Came to Tea
"Done painting" - Mommy got a love red butterfly painting from A and Daddy also got a drawing from her.
"Exercising" - I think this is actually brain gym.  A has been teaching D an exercise class at home recently which I had assumed was from pre-school and then she randomly mentioned brain gym this morning.
"Played with V" - V is a little girl who started the same day as A&D and does the same days. However on further questioning A actually clarified that she "played with her hair, but I stopped Mommy".  A has an absolute obsession with hair, it is a bit of a comfort thing for her.  Most people who she is close enough to to do it to are fine with this, but it does irritate me after a bit when she messes with my hair.  I just don't like anybody messing with my hair.  Her telling me this though did remind me that I must tell the staff about it because, as much as she cannot go round messing with children's hair and I have explained that to her so, I want the staff to know that she is being affectionate and not pulling hair and being spiteful when she does it.

From memory I think that is about all they have told me about; although I know that they have done a lot more I think they always tell me about the things that they have enjoyed most. 

Catching up with them after their session is very cute and far too grown up a thing to be doing with my babies.  Where did the time go?

A&D - 1 day old

D - 5 months old

A - 5 months old

A&D - 1st Birthday (and poorly)

A - 2nd birthday

D - 2nd birthday

A&D - 1st day of pre-school

Wednesday, 7 September 2011


Well Wednesday can only mean one thing and that is Booby Club as it is affectionately known in our house or to give it its proper name the breastfeeding cafe that I volunteer at.  E, the midwife who I work with, was on annual leave today so twas me on my lonesome and well it was fairly uneventful.  Just one gorgeous little three week old girl with her lovely mommy and daddy who were doing extremely well and didn't really need much other than a bit of moral support and encouragement.

If you do not know me personally and are now tempted to stop reading this blog entry because you think that I am the "Breastapo" as we seem to have been affectionately labelled then please think again.  My agenda is not to guilt trip or force women who do not want to breastfeed into breastfeeding.  How you choose to feed your baby is exactly that, a choice.  My passion is to ensure that all women are given enough accurate information to make an informed decision about how they feed their baby and that those women who choose to breastfeed are given the information and support that so many of them are so desperate for to be able to continue to feed.  Breastfeeding is one of the most natural things in the world, but definitely not the easiest.  There are huge ups and downs along the way, especially in those early days, so some families need all of the support that they can get and unfortunately that support isn't always readily available which is where volunteer peer supporters come in.

Believe it or not I was one of those women who, prior to getting that elusive positive pregnancy test, wasn't really that fussed about breastfeeding and in fact I'd go as far as to say that I really wasn't keen on the idea, but because I knew about the health benefits I thought that I would give it a go regardless of my reservations, although I have to say that I didn't think for one second that I would be successful.

It was only when I found out on day four that A had lost 12% of her birth weight and it was suggested to me that I may need to top her up with formula that I realised how much I actually wanted to breastfeed.  This is by no means a reflection on those who formula feed their babies, like I said before it is a personal choice, but to be honest the thought of having to give her formula (probably combined with a whole host of hormones) made me cry and so that is when the concerted effort began.  You know I am still, to this day,  totally amazed and surprised at how quickly my view about breastfeeding changed.

For me breastfeeding A&D was a wonderful experience that I am so happy to have had, but it took me a good while of sleep deprivation, sore nipples, thrush, constant feeding, engorged breasts, etc, etc before I came to that conclusion.  That wonderful experience is what prompted me to become a peer supporter; so many women have such a tough time with breastfeeding and give up because they feel that they have no other choice and the support that they need is not available to them.  I hate the thought that so many women, when they look back at their time breastfeeding, have that negative and upsetting association with it.  My aim when I am working with women is simply to do what I can to help them get out the other side so that, instead of that negative association, they know what a wonderful experience breastfeeding can be.

Saturday, 3 September 2011


So there are a lot of things that I would like to teach myself that I do not seem to be able to find time to; you know bake, sew, knit and the list goes on.  I do cook, but I am no chef I make home cooked food like roasts, lasagne, chilli, soup, beefburgers, blah, blah, blah.  I don't even attempt the gourmet stuff and I generally stick to the same things that I know that I am good at and will get eaten.

As I am in awe of this lovely lady who has a little one the same age as mine and a teeny tiny and still somehow manages to bake, cook, make cards, get creative with her little lady, etc, etc, etc, I was inspired to step it up a gear yesterday and cook something out of my comfort zone with A&D so that they could have some fun too.  My other reason for doing it with them was that as much as I try to give them a varied diet and succeed quite well at it I am rubbish when it comes to fish.  I really don't generally like it and, as much as I try to not to let my dislikes rub off on them, I don't cook it as much as I should and thus they don't eat it very often because I don't cook it very often and they are just not used to eating it.  I thought that if they made it themselves they may be more inclined to try it.

So we decided on Fish Triple Decker .  Admittedly this is a recipe from I Can Cook With Katie so is very very simple, but A&D like to make Katie's recipes and they are very easy to follow for them.  We did alter the recipe slightly by substituting the tomato ketchup (yuk!) for tomato puree, haddock for cod and also swapping olives and mushrooms for peppers.  Oh and I almost forgot we added a sprinkle of mild chilli powder to the cheese and breadcrumb topping.  The tiddlers thoroughly enjoyed making their own dinner and although they didn't eat the whole thing they did eat the toppings and try some of the fish which is all I ever ask of them so I was very pleased.  On top of that him in doors and I loved it (I cannot believe I just said that about fish) so definitely something we will be eating again.

I was so on the ball that I even remembered to take photos (although not very good ones) so here is the finished product. 

Friday, 2 September 2011


I am a fixer.  You know one of those people who, probably like most, cannot stand to see the people they care about in any hurt or pain or predicament and always has to find some kind of way to make it better,  but today I am stumped and it is bothering me somewhat.

I found out yesterday that the father of a friend of mine has an incurable disease.  What do you say to somebody when they tell you that?  What are the right words to make them feel better?  What do you do to make it easier for them?  The answer of course is nothing.  You cannot make it go away, you cannot say anything to make it better or easier for them.  Their world has just fallen apart and as much as you want to you just cannot take that pain away.  I've concluded that the only thing I can do is to make sure that they know that I am here if they need anything and hope that they take some comfort in that fact, but as a fixer that just doesn't sit right with me.

I don't know my friend's father personally, but I do know a few things about him from the way my friend talks about him.  He works hard, he loves his wife and family dearly and will do anything for them and along with his wife has raised three children that any parent would be so so proud of.  For people that all live in different parts of the country and the world I get the impression that they are such a close family which is probably in part down to their dad and I am sure that they will be each other's rocks through this tough time.

I wish that I could finish this post with something wise and inspiring, but the fact is that my mind cannot rationalise a situation like this so I have nothing wise to say on the matter.  It was just one of those occasions where I needed to process my thoughts somewhere and if they ever happen to stumble across this blog they will know that I would have fixed it if I could.