We’ve been splitting up by gender a bit today. A couple of years ago the boys and I were a bit stuck as to what we could give Bob for father’s day and eventually settled on a voucher for 3* treatment at a Turkish barber’s in town. He enjoyed it so much (despite a slightly alarming experience – but I’ll leave it to him to describe it 😆 ) that it has now become a tradition. Last year J went with him for a bit of male bonding and this was so successful that this year K went too 🙂
Meanwhile L and I were to go belly dancing, as she has been begging to come with me for weeks and one way or another we’ve not managed it; sessions have always ended up being cancelled when we could make them or we’ve been otherwise engaged when they were on. Before we left, though, the teacher phoned to say that the session was cancelled, and in fact that there would be no more sessions, as it was just not viable to keep going with the small number of attendees 🙁 She borrowed a sling from me a while back and wanted to know how and when to return it – or would I like to pop round for a coffee at the time the class would have been on? (Underlying current/unspoken message: pleeeease pop round for a coffee!) This we did, giving L the unaccustomed experience of being the older child when the other was an only child – and a boisterous 13 month old bent on pushing boundaries at that! She rose to the occasion, although a little bewildered as to why he wouldn’t share his toys and why everything she picked up should suddenly be of immense interest to him when he had discarded it just seconds before 😆 Lovely as he was, I could see why his mum was starting to feel a little stressed and overwhelmed; I remember that phase well!
After their Turkish treat the lads made their way to a summer fair in aid of the toddler group and playgroup they both used to go to, where we eventually joined them, and had fun decorating windmills and little fabric bags (with England flags *sigh*), playing on the bouncy castle, eating sweet treats from the cake stall and browsing the jumble tables for tat – sorry, treasure 😉
This afternoon, I have mostly been…….. sleeping! This is almost unheard of for me, but L’s sleeping pattern (such as it was 🙄 ) has changed since MP camp, with the effect that Bob and I now get something of an evening (good), she sleeps more soundly (good), still wakes a couple of times (not so good) and wakes proportionately earlier too (really not good!) – so I’m now getting even less sleep 🙁 When I went running on Thursday I came close to collapse after 30 minutes at moderate speed (ie slow :lol:) so I don’t see good things coming out of the Race for Life tomorrow unless I can get a bit more sleep tonight 😕 Hopefully dozing this afternoon will have helped, although it means the bathroom is still not tiled!
Still, Bob managed to get the shed finished, so we can now start putting things into it, which should help with the downstairs decluttering efforts… You never know, one day we may even lift ourselves out of CHAOS and be able to have friends round again 😯
Getting a bit behind already 😆 so time for a bit of a catching-up post, I think.
It’s been a busy couple of weeks, although we hardly seem to have *done* anything 😕
The week before last, after parents and tots (and the infamous milk incident!), we had lunch with a friend and then walked home, L on my back in the Ergo, with all our bits and pieces in the rucksack (useful but definitely less comfortable as it changes the centre of gravity) and a boy holding each hand. On the way we met a woman with a boy somewhere between my two in age and a baby in a pushchair, who stopped us to ask if my sling was comfortable. By the time we had finished talking about it, what it was, how it worked, where to get one etc, the boys were arm in arm and chatting as though they had been friends for years 🙂 so we decided on a slight detour to the park rather than walking straight home.
It turned out that the woman was Canadian and they were in Cambridge for just a few months, which were almost over 🙁 and had not bothered to get the boy (Z) into school for such a short time so were effectively HE, but only temporarily – anyway, the children got on like a house on fire (we’ve had to meet up a few times since due to popular demand) and we got to talk slings and carriers as they are about to go off for 10 days walking/hiking in the mountains in Italy… She fell in love with the NG Ergo (I think seeing me carry a 2 year old comfortably helped!) and we were lucky enough to then spot one up for sale second-hand on ukparents so she should have one in time for the holiday 😉
I guess this counts as socialisation for both the boys and me 😀 – shame they’re leaving so soon though 🙁
Oh, and I’m now on the look-out for yet another highly-recommended book, but with very little hope of finding it as it is both Canadian (I think) and out of print: Five Minute Miracles. Loads of simple ideas for five-minute educational and/or fun activities which require little or no preparation. If I can’t get hold of a copy, I guess I’ll just have to start compiling my own…
We met Z and family again on Tuesday (church coffee morning) and again on Thurs (p&t) and now have just one week before they go; I’m torn between cramming lots of meetings in because the children get on so well and not doing that because I don’t want the boys to feel they have found a new friend only to lose him again.
This is made more acute by the fact that another HE family, with very similar aged children, doing almost exactly the same things (even to having middle children at same preschool) has just moved away, leaving K unwilling to go to preschool at all (M was his best friend both in and out of preschool), L missing her first real friend and J a bit lost as we spent so much time with them as a family that even though he and O had their moments he will miss them all a lot. I’m feeling rather bereft too 🙁
Parents and Tots again today, but this time with milk 😆
J and K’s new friend Z came along (with mum and baby sister – and she’s managed to buy the NG Ergo I pointed out to her so looking forward to playing with that when it gets here :D) and S was there, so there was quite a posse of older boys and I let J just get on with it rather than trying to do any set work. Z had brought along some little water squirters so they rushed around outside while the little ones stayed safely inside. L did lots of playdough and playing with babies 🙂
When it came to story and song time I decided to put my foot down and made J and K come and sit quietly rather than running around as they have been the last few weeks; it’s not fair on the littlies and they actually enjoy it once they get into it 😉 We sat and they chose a book each. J wanted to read his to me rather than the other way around, so I got to listen to Two-Can Toucan, then we started on K’s choice of The Three Little Pigs, but it was too long and we ran out of time… which actually proved to be a bonus as J took over, took K, Z and S to a corner and read the rest of the book quietly to them while the rest of us sang. K was lured over to the singing (by Humpty Dumpty) when the book was finished, but the rest of them just got another book and carried right on reading 😀 I was so chuffed, especially by how confidently – and flawlessly – J reads now.
Once everyone had gone we had lunch in the church hall with Rebecca and Jonah, then went to a new soft play place in Fenstanton to meet Emma and her boys.
The place proved to be well laid-out and ideal for mums to chat and children to wear themselves out, so it was a great way to spend an afternoon catching up with old friends.
Came home just before the rush hour, picked Bob up from work early, cooked tea while he did some maths (working out football tables) with J and then the children rushed round the garden with water squirters again before we ate. K and L both conked out pretty much straight after tea; Bob and J curled up to read next chapter of The Horse and His Boy and I’m about to go out running with a friend.
😀 Contented sigh 😀