Tag Archives: H

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I'm sure it cannot have escaped your notice that this weekend saw Spring arrive.

OK so it is now an overcast Monday; Spring put in an appearance anyway.

On Saturday, Harry and I paid a visit to my Auntie's house in Portishead.  My Sister picked us up long with two cousins and we descended on my Auntie's house.  We were paying a visit as my Nana and Great-Auntie were visiting from Belfast and we wanted to catch up with them.

After a nice buffet lunch we spent a couple of hours in the garden enjoying the sunshine, watching all five boys (aged from almost-3 up to 10 years old) playing nicely together, whether on the trampoline or playing football.  Unfortunately I forgot to take any pictures, other than one I have already shared of Harry covered in ice-cream!  In case you missed it though, here it is again!

Ice Cream!

Sunday wasn't quite such a bright day but after a morning of clearing the washing pile the husband, Harry and I headed to the local park.  This isn't a park that I have been to before because I had always thought it was too far a walk but D insisted that I would be able to manage it so I was happy to go along as well.  Harry decided that as Mummy didn't know the way, he would show me.

the walk3

Harry's confidence on the play equipment has always amazed me, he has never had any sense of fear but then I suppose toddlers are often like that.  I think they mostly pick up on fears from others around them and we've always been happy to let him roam, whilst keeping a close eye on him.  However, during this visit he didn't want our help at all with anything and was absolutely determined to do things solo, I think he was even contemplating the fireman's pole himself but that was a step too far for us and the husband helped him slide down it.

Playground Fun!

After lots of fun on the equipment, we took Harry out of playground to run around the open green and he ran towards the paddling pool.  Since it clearly isn't quite Summer yet, the gates were locked but Harry wasn't convinced so stalked around the gates, stopping every now and again to try and force his way through the barriers.  At the discovery that he couldn't, in fact, squeeze through the railings and Daddy wouldn't lift him over we could see a tantrum simmering just beneath the surface and then suddenly we were saved by the bell.  Well the ice cream van.

Now, to the best of my knowledge, Harry has never actually had anything from an ice cream fan but he does like music, any music and he will dance, so I can only assume it is his love of tunes that made him run towards the van where upon he spotted ice cream and asked for one (including please!).  One ice cream purchased and we made our way to a bench to sit and eat it, shared between the three of us.  Except, stupidly, we chose a bench in view of the paddling pool.  Now there were three tween boys that had climbed over the wall to retrieve their footballs, which of course meant Harry believed he could go in after all.  Mummy and Daddy were clearly lying and the most epic tantrum we have ever had the misfortune of dealing with in public erupted.

Whilst I carried on eating the ice cream (hey, I can hardly pick him up at the best of times!), the husband tried to persuade Harry he could go back to the playground to no avail so promptly picked him up and our trip to the park was brought to an end.

Harsh maybe?  I don't know but there was no way we were attempting to reason with a toddler in full tantrum mode in public!

I am linking up to #CountryKids for Outdoor Fun!

Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall

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After my disastrous one attempt to join in with Project 365, last week I set myself a new challenge which was to simply at least manage to have one half decent photo a week to share.

Today I have a collage to show you of our trip to one of our regular haunts, St Werburg's City Farm.

H decided he didn't want to spend much time looking at the animals but instead he ran through the farm and headed for the playground.  Frankly, in normal circumstances he is far too young and small to play in this particular one but as you can see from the pictures below, with close supervision, he is clearly having a lot of fun.
Project 52 Wk 2


Whilst he has, for the most part, dropped his nap, H does still enjoy to tease us by pretending he wants a nap, as you can see from the photo above which was taken on Friday.  However, as it turned out he did actually nap and then it was past 9pm before we managed to get him settled for bed, even though he only slept for an hour!  Over the next week or so he will be attending settling in sessions with the local Children's Centre pre-school 3 afternoons a week and we are incredibly excited by this.  We actually chose afternoons because he often sleeps in and is not happy to be woken up, much like both D and myself!

 

TheBoyandMe's 365 Linky

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We took a trip to our local city farm again this week.  It is fast becoming a firm favourite of H's on the days I can actually get out.  There is a little adventure playground there too which H is mostly too little for but he has a whale of a time exploring the tunnel with different coloured windows in.

Sat Cap new

 

After you have captioned this adorable little man, why not head to Mammasaurus for more captioning fun?


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I realised recently that is has been a long time since I have written about H.  He was the reason I initially started this little corner of the Internet for my own space, which has become more of a sort of therapy for me with all the support I have found.  So, I decided that it was high time my readers, who may miss steady stream of tweets, to find out what the little man is like now.  In a break from my normal blog posts, this one is dedicated to my son and very much a "Proud Mummy" post.

H seems to have bulldozed into yet another fascinating stage.  I almost feel like I haven't been around him for a few months such is his leap in development.

H is quickly stringing words together and doing so quickly.  One of his favourite phrases at the moment is "I didn't mean to".  As much as he may be able to say it clearly, he clearly doesn't understand the concept since he often just randomly says "I didn't mean to" in a tone that would usually be reserved for a grovelling apology.  Although since H can't yet say sorry and an apology consists almost entirely of a hug and and a kiss, I wouldn't know what H's apologetic tone is and at his age, I don't expect him to understand.  When he completes one of his puzzles on an app he shouts "Mamma I did it!" with the biggest grin on his face.  When he can't do a task, he refuses all help and works himself into a state before succumbing to assistance.

My Boys
My Boys

He is very keen to learn as well.  Which is just as well since we have just been told he has a funded place at a local pre-school.  We have yet to have the home visit or indeed visit the pre-school ourselves but the rate at which H is picking up new words and skills, the sooner he starts the better for him.

He recognises most letters of the alphabet now, which I imagine is due to his insistence on watching Countdown.  We even have to show him some Youtube clips just to keep the peace.  The down side to this is that whilst he can say most letters, he refuses to repeat them back phonetically to me when I try to play with his Leapad.  For us, this isn't too much of a worry now as we are sure that once he does start at pre-school, he will quickly pick them up.

Alongside recognising letters, he also recognises from 0-15.  Again, he doesn't necessarily say them all clearly and his counting isn't quite up to standard (whatever that is, I am just guessing from what friends say!) but again, with him due to start pre-school soon, this will likely only improve.

With speech, H is at a stage where he repeats literally everything we say.  It is like having a parrot following you around all the time and as much as it can get irritating, it is wonderful to hear, knowing that he is learning all the time.

He knows what a lot of animals are and the noises they make, although he does insist that cats squeak, rather like a mouse!

My baby is growing into a strong, wilful, determined little boy who definitely knows his own mind.  He gets bored quickly, flitting from one toy to the next and is always on the move.

Recently he has all but dropped his nap for good.  When he does want a nap we try our hardest to distract him but his determination comes into play and the end result means he is later to bed and earlier to wake.

I think what I am most proud of, yet also sad for him about, is his sensitivity.  By that I mean at not even 3 years old, he is aware when I have a bad day, whether physically or mentally.  If I complain of my back being sore, he walks behind me and says "Mama sore back" and gently rubs it for me, before giving me a cuddle.  When I have a bad day mentally he will say "Mama sad" and frequently cuddle me.  Which breaks my heart, as much as I try to protect him from that, I can't all the time.

Somehow, despite the trails we have been through recently, the husband and I have brought up a happy, confident, bright child who chatters incessantly, has a passion for learning and is independent.  I was doubtful when he left the child minder (due to our move) whether I could meet his needs in terms of development but I think we've done a pretty good job and the time has definitely come for him to get more challenged.

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Until now H hasn't had a huge amount of interaction with his peers or a consistent playmate.  On moving to Bristol I found one local group I liked which became so popular you had to pre-book, sometimes two weeks in advance (at least one week, no more than two weeks and not two weeks in a row...) and I gave up with it once we discovered we were going to be made homeless.  Since living in temporary accommodation his only interaction has been us and my family although he does not seem to have been hampered by that.

A couple of weeks ago we passed a woman and her son in the hall way of the hostel in which we currently live and her son and H started playing.  It was just a short period as it was coming up to dinner time.  A few days later and the boy knocked on our door and asked if he could play with H, his mum was with him and so they came into our room, again just briefly.  Last week was half term here so H and Z (who attends pre-school usually) played almost daily, sometimes for a couple of hours at a time.  Whilst I like that H has a new playmate and it has highlighted that he has missed having peers to play with however much fun he can and does have with Mummy and Daddy, it has brought a whole new dilemma.

The Playmate Dilemma.

Image courtesy of Stuart Miles / FreeDigitalPhotos.net
Image courtesy of Stuart Miles / FreeDigitalPhotos.net 

You see, I don't particularly like Z.

I know he is only 4.  I know whilst it is clean and safe it's not particularly pleasant or secure (in the sense it isn't permanent or even long term) for any of us to live here.  I know that the snatching is normal.  I know that the being defiant (even when it's just me supervising) is normal behaviour.  I know it is perfectly normal for him to be territorial over his own toys as well as H's when they play together.

The real problem the husband and I have with Z is his swearing.  We have heard him use the whole range of inflammatory phrases and words. Whilst I don't really regard an exclamation of "Oh my God!" as swearing it is offensive to some people and also, in my opinion, not particularly pleasant to hear from such a young child anyway.  I have also now a few times heard him say "Fuck off" to us, to his mum and to H and whilst I always hoped to not have to tell someone else's child off (clearly I am naive) I did tell him that swearing isn't nice and if he said it again he wouldn't be able to play with H again.

Perhaps I am too used to being able to control who H plays with.  Maybe I need to loosen those apron strings a little earlier than I had hoped.  I know he will pick up these behaviours and language when he starts pre-school.

I am aware H isn't perfect but on the whole he is polite and well behaved but then he is in the presence of at least one of us all the time still.  Even when he did attend nursery and then a childminder, we never had any complaints regarding his behaviour, although I recognise that he was a lot younger then!

I don't want to stop H from playing with Z.  It isn't fair to either child really, least of all my own since Z is currently his only play-mate.  Yet I am concerned by H already picking up certain behaviours from him.  I've noticed a marked increase on H's whining.  The husband has noticed him reacting in an usually OTT way to a simple trip.  Although there is no real telling whether it is pure coincidence or not!

I know from reading an article in the Fail today that I am not alone in wanting to try to retain control of my child's choice of play-mate, not that H has much of a choice currently but it doesn't make it any easier feeling so conflicted.

Realistically, how much control can we have over who our children play with?

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We found this little gem in between Christmas and New Year when we decided to make the most of the respite from the rain and have a wander around the local area where we now live.

We didn't actually visit the Farm itself that day but went to the attached pub which is small but very family friendly and offers a range of local ciders and beers, wines, spirits, soft drinks and food.  Whilst there may not be a great deal of room inside, there is a large beer garden and on this particular day there was a marquee set up with benches, although I am not sure if this was in preparation for New Years Eve. ...continue reading

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I have a confession to make.  Well two really.

The first one being that I have never been that great at taking photos.  I always imagined that once I had a child I would want to snap every single minute but the reality isn't the same.  All too often I get caught up in the moment and forget to pull out my phone or camera until long after the moment has gone.  That is where Project 365 comes in. ...continue reading

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H is usually one of the most laid back, adaptable toddlers I have ever known.  Everyone comments on his nature and a line that is often said to us is "He is so laid back he is horizontal".  Whether it be keeping him up late, going away for one night or four, changed his routine through switching childcare providers or jobs, he has always adapted well and on returning home after going away, settled back into his original routine with amazing ease. ...continue reading