What a difference a day ( and some deep breaths) makes.

The last few days have been a bit of a struggle to keep our little ship afloat. Noah seems to be determined to get a reaction from me (by ANY means) and it has been pretty bloody exhausting to balance on the knife edge. If you have a very free spirited 3 year old, I’m sure you understand what I mean!

From spitting full on in his little sister’s face when I’m not looking, to kicking the dog and everything in-between. Honestly I haven’t been able to take my eyes off of him this week for fear of him hurting someone 😦

Yesterday I realised that maybe actually he does need me a little bit more than I thought. I spoke to a lovely helpful member of the children’s centre on Monday and she reminded me of all the things I already know, but I need to hear. 

Things like young children usually do 1 ‘good’ thing to 20 ‘naughty’ thing in a day. It’s a case of picking your battles with the 20 things, and praising the 1 thing until you are sick of your own voice. I know this, I also know that he isn’t ‘naughty’. I hate that word, I hate that it can taint a child’s view of themselves and they can end up feeling shame and turn in to a self-fulfilling prophecy. I do not want Noah to think, “they think I’m naughty and it gets me attention, it’s easier than being ‘good’.”

So I let myself stop worrying about the washing that doesn’t end and played on his trampoline with him and Oswin. He was so surprised and happy to have me there that he kept kissing me and saying I’m the best jumper ever. What more could you hope for? 

Today I woke up ready to be the positive and gentle parent I want to be. I don’t want to be the mum who says no just out of habit and to hurry him because I think he’s taking too long. Today I tried again and will no doubt loose my temper and have to try again another day. The thing is, today, I had an observer. I had my family friend’s daughter with me, she is 11 but wise beyond her years and a fantastic help with little ones. 

Today she said to me, after a whole day of seeing how I talk to my kids and how I deal with their demands and tantrums, “you are such a happy person, you’re like sunshine”. She said I don’t let noah get to me and I don’t get tough when they don’t listen to me and I’m not at all like her mum. 

To begin with I did the are you mad? Laugh. I had no idea why she thought I was so happy when I feel like I am in my own little anxiety filled storm cloud most days. But then I looked back through the many points in my day where I have had to battle with Noah, break up fights in soft play and deal with winnie constantly trying to undress me whist shouting “boobies, Yeh, boobies?” in public. I realised that actually I was pretty calm, we dealt with each issue without shouting or threats. We made races out of getting in the car or putting shoes on and had the ‘one more play’ before we left the playground. Noah didn’t fight me, I spoke to him like a very clever child, not a naughty toddler and he responded brilliantly.

 I’m not saying this always works but God it’s nice to be told I’m doing OK. Even if it is by an 11 year old! 
I’m goin to do my best to ignore the behaviour I know only appears when he is tired or wants my attention and flood him with praise and attention as much as I can from now on. It’s hard work but jesus, arguing with a 3 year old takes years off your life I’m sure! They do not back down. 

We have walked in the common, made a bed outside and have eaten quite a lot of popcorn. They were both asleep by 8 without a battle and I don’t feel like crying. Let’s see what we can get up to tomorrow! 

Toddler questions 

I knew I would always enjoy answering Noah’s questions about simple things like bugs and types of trees. I did think it would be a bit longer before he started asking more in depth questions that I have to actually think about. A couple of days ago he was asking how do babies get in your tummy? O jesus, he’s 3! So we went with when a mummy and daddy love eachother so so much they ask for a baby. OK that worked. The next day, “how do babies get out?” 😕  nope I’m not ready for this. Thankfully my mum decided to say they come out of a ‘hole’ 😆  she was not expecting Noah to keep asking where and how! So now he thinks babies come out of your bum. He didn’t understand that ladies have a different hole because he doesn’t have one.

Today I’ve also had to answer “mummy how to you know bananas are real?” and the corker “mummy what if Bananas have faces”. So on the surface level he could just be asking if they are real or maybe plastic? But I like to think he was somehow aware of the matrix or something similar and has an awareness of if something is real or in his mind. I’m ignoring asking if Bananas have faces because then I have to go in to “well we do eat things with faces but don’t worry!” and that’s too much for today! 

No blankets on buggies please! 

Now the sun have found its way back to us, do you know how to keep your baby safe and cool? 

I don’t use a buggy very often but more so in the summer when it is too hot and sticky to wear them.
I wanted to get the safest option to keep Oswin (1 year) out of the sun whilst in the buggy, I found the SnoozeShade and it is brilliant! 

The lovely people at SnoozeShade sent me a deluxe SnoozeShade to try out and this is how we got on. 
Firstly the brilliant stretchy design fits any standard buggy (we tried a Graco Evo, a Cosatto Giggle and a stroller) and it completely covers the seat and child. This means that if your little one is wearing shorts or a dress their legs will still be out of the sun. Gone are the days of fighting with a parasol and shade chasing when your out walking! 

There is a zip at the front to open fully or just one layer, depending on the level of shade needed. There is also a handy ‘peep’ zip to check on them, this bit is very handy for checking on little ones. 

We took it for a spin to the park this weekend and for the first time winnie fell asleep in the buggy! Noah thought it was a tent and wanted to get in too.

I will be lending it to my sister for her little one when they go to various places around Europe this summer. Like lots of mums she uses a muslin over the buggy. This is generally fine but on days when there isn’t much of a breeze or blistering heat, it can cause the baby to get hotter than they would be in the open air. Also the SnoozeShade is uv safe which is brilliant for added peace of mind with little ones, other covers don’t offer this protection, so babies can still catch the sun through them. 

The SnoozeShade comes in its own little mesh bag and goes back in to it without any issue to pop back under the buggy.

The SnoozeShade would also come in handy on very windy days as it cocoons the buggy, it is pretty snuggly in there but air can still circulate. 

Even with the SnoozeShade please still put suncream on little ones and out of the hottest part of the day if possible! 

I am looking forward to seeing if I can get my toddler to go to sleep under it now! 

If you are baby wearing in this heat, we do most of the time, please remember that the carrier or sling counts as a layer! We are very much showing off Oswin’s cloth nappy collection when she is carried at the moment.

Go check out SnoozeShade on amazon, they have quite a few handy variations.

Stay safe in the sun every one ☀  x

Banana launcher 

Today is one of those ‘falling through parenting day’s. I call them this because it literally feels like no matter how organised you try to be or how nicely you ask, you are just not going to get the playgroup that starts at 9:30. Ha! Even if it was pm I think we would struggle to be on time!

Today is pretty much stuck in a crappy cycle of this: 

Me: “Noah can you stop standing on your sisters dress please”.

Noah: blank look, stands on her foot.

Me: “Noah come on let’s not hurt Winnie”

Noah: apparently has no ears so doesn’t hear words (unless it sounds like chocolate or sweets).

Me: “OK last chance, move away”

Noah: growls

And this has pretty much been the conversation for everything today. 

So far his rein of destruction today has resulted in: 

  1. Ripped apart 4 make up sponges.
  2. Soaked a roll of toilet roll in the sink.
  3. Eaten half a jar of Nutella without a spoon.
  4. Noah drinking orange squash without water because he got it out before I was even down the stairs.
  5. Destroyed the living room, one cushion at a time.

So after planning to go to a playgroup this morning with a very optimistic attitude, I realised I have a very unrealistic view of what is possible with a 3 year old boy and a baby girl that just wants to cuddle and kiss everyone. It has ended in being a shouty mummy, noah going to his room 3 times for a ‘calm down’ and a drive to attempt to get him to sleep, aswell as letting winnie have a nap. 

An hour later he got annoyed at every song I put on and shouted that I was going the wrong way (I don’t even know where I’m goin shut up!!). So we have now got macdonalds, so I can have a coffee and he has a minion with a banana launcher, ofcourse he gives no shits about the food it came with! 

Jesus I said the day has ended up and it’s not even 1 o’clock, roll on bedtime. 

It’s OK to not want to kiss goodbye

http://everydayfeminism.com/2016/05/teaching-consent-doesnt-matter/

Reading this article on teaching consent made me think several things. 1 now that I have a daughter I need to make sure she is brave enough to say no and to not let her grow up thinking that is it not OK to feel uncomfortable or sexualised. 2 having a son I need to make sure he does not become this type of person, I need to teach him no is enough to stop something happening. 3 let him know it is OK if he doesn’t want to kiss someone good bye or give cuddles, we need to pay more attention to his body language and his choices as his parents, if we don’t who will?
It is never too early to ask your little ones permission to touch them, watching a video on baby massage earlier today, you ask permission using a familiar hand gesture and they learn that they can refuse the massage. If they show discomfort you should stop the massage to teach them they have the right to not be touched from day one. This is a very early introduction to self awareness and it is a brilliant first step.