Sunday, 28 August 2011

A very English summer - rain!

Monday:  Lots of washing after the holiday! Turns out I was mightily tired after the trip, so I got a good night's sleep on Saturday. Then I slept almost all day on Sunday - pausing only for food, all through the night, and that was enough: I was back to my chatty, not so crotchity self.  Mum seemed very relieved as Dad was at work all day. Oh and I was 7 months old today!

Catching some zzzz

Tuesday:  Granny W. came to see me. I was on best behaviour and tried very hard to look super-extra-cute. We even had a chat, though nobody seems to understand me properly. Granny W brought me a Skwish - it is the perfect present for a teeny my age, I know this 'cos I've already got one! Sorry to Granny W, but still a very good idea. That night we went to my Uncle and Aunt's house for dinner. Mum and Dad had a yummy pasta bake - I had mango and a sleep. Toby and Julia were very impressed with my sleeping and asked if I could teach my cousins!

Wednesday: more new things - I tried fish for the first time. It's rather nice! And mum and I went to see her friend Lucy and her new (8 week old) sprog Toby. Nice chap - I tried teaching him some of my favourite tricks - but he was a bit sleepy!

First fishy meal

Thursday:  No swimming as 'half term' and Peckham pool was shut for 'alarm' reasons but went for lunch with George, Albert and Bea.  The Mums talked about 'laminated lists' and guilty crushes whatever they are!  I talked to the other babies about teething and drooling mostly with the odd tip on stealth vomiting which I've perfected.  Bea has 1 tooth already and thinks she's got more on the way.  She's got a cool giraffe to chew on but I've got Mr. Squeaker so I'm not too jealous.

Friday:  Mum went to training then ran around the house getting her paperwork sorted for a meeting at her work.  It's been 7 months since Mum stopped work and she's not got that long before she goes back so there's quite a lot of stuff to get together.  Not least, her brain! Paperwork sorted. Then she had to get a meal ready for me to eat while we were out. Paperwork sorted and meal ready. Then she had to get me into the car with all the right kit in the rain. Paperwork sorted, meal sorted and me in my seat in the car with me quite dry, her quite wet! Then she had to drive us across town to her hospital. Paperwork sorted, meal done, me in the car and one and a half hours of me screaming later - we're at Northwick Park hospital. Mum was very restrained, I thought, when she was told that we hadn't needed to go there as she was transferring to train at another hospital.Still, we got to see some of her colleagues and I got hugs from many people.  Mum seemed quite upset in the car on the way home.  I think she liked working there...
That night we had my lovely godparents P&L over for dinner. God-daddy P and I gave each other very good hugs. He's a very good hugger. I think we both felt better for them. I tried ever so hard not to stealth vonit as it's a treat I save for M+D mostly.

Saturday: M&D looked into our fridge and realised we probably couldn't all survive on wine and cheddar alone, although Dad said he's be willing to give it a go! So we all went shopping. We drove to Canary Wharf which seemed to have ever so many shops (it got quite dull after a while!). Then we came home with most of Waitrose. We had a quiet night in.

Sunday: A very nice quiet day. M&D were able to spend the whole day together. Oh and I've been introduced to Skype. So I was able to have lovely video chats with Granny W and Grandad and Granny E. This is new and looks rather fun.

Love to all,
Arthur x

Monday, 22 August 2011

Wine, Toblerone and teething

Well it's been a busy old week. And yet I've been sat on my bum for most of it. We've been on a big European road trip and now, 1350 miles later, I'm home again.

On Sunday it was the start of my long trip and time to get used to my car seat. Mum has decorated it with a happy bug and a jangly star. I kept my eyes on them, and they seemed to follow me all over Europe! We started by driving to Kent and through the Eurotunnel. I was allowed out for cuddles while the car was on the train but the crossing was so quick I was straight back in my seat until lunch. Me and Dad and their friends Simon and Cathrine had a lovely lunch in an old Monastery. I was good as gold for two courses and then realised I wasn't getting any of the food. It only took the briefest of squeaks to get Dad to take me out to the garden and feed me. The training is working well. After lunch we drove down to Reims and spent the night in a lovely hotel there.
Do not try this trick as a grown up

Monday was a French bank holiday in August. Nothing in the world is as closed as France during the summer bank holiday. So we enjoyed a gentle saunter down to Burgundy. Lots more time in the car seat but M&D were very good about me getting food at my mealtimes. Mummy had her first ever drive on the wrong side of the road - because Daddy was driving Simon's car. Apparently this was a big deal as it was a Ferrari. Dad seemed very happy and Mum didn't crash and only drove on the UK side once, much squeaking from me and Cathrine in the back!

I wasn't allowed in the silver one!
That night I had a babysitter who kept bouncing me (is it too much to ask to be allowed to sleep!). Mum and Dad had a comedy Maitre-D'. Apparently he tried to give Mum the wrong food 3, yes three times. Then threw an almighty wobbler (worthy of me, if I may say so) when M&D asked if they were going to be charged for this wrong meal. Oops.

Tuesday was the big tasting day. Now I know nothing about wine but apparently it's a sort of milk for grown ups. Though I overheard so much I reckon I'm now a bit of an expert. I'd recommend Pooleenie Morashay, since you ask.  M&D and S&C went to three different tastings. They tried 24 different wines in the course of the day and spat most of it out. Seems a waste if you ask me. I had a good look at the barrels and stuff. It was nearly interesting. Then we went to another hotel, the Lameloise in Chagny. This was really super and Mum and Dad had their first ever 3 star Michelin dinner. Apparently it was rather good!

Note Mum's haircut!
Simon, Mum and Cathrine

Wednesday - we left France and drove down to Switzerland. Dad was super careful as he had been told how tough the Swiss police are with speeding. Mum was driving the Ferrari. We couldn't keep up!

Thursday - the weather in Switzerland was simply gorgeous. So we took a brisk walk 3000ft up the Alps, with everyone taking it in turns to carry me. We had a lovely lunch on a meadow and I decided to spread my food over everything in sight. Happy day!

Swiss Alps behind me and Cathrine

Friday - and the start of the drive back. We went back over the Alps on the back roads, and down through the Jura. Dad got us a bit lost briefly and I had a very messy lunch at the cutest pavement cafe by the river in Besancon. I have perfected the art of the strop whilst being fed in public. Mum and Dad are very patient! We drove up as far as Epernay for the night. A lovely quiet night followed by the biggest breakfast M&D could eat - fuel for the final push.

Three arty photos from Dad:


Saturday - we drove back up to Calais being very careful not to speed, given the French police love to book Brits rushing back for the Eurotunnel (A staggeringly efficient service, by the way - Dad). I had a quick lunch and nappy change on the boot of the Jag, and then back in my car seat for the short run into London. It was pouring with rain to welcome us!
We went straight up to Finsbury Park to see Katie, who was my lovely first babysitter and has now had a second baby of her own. I met the rest of her family and the new baby - nearly as cute as me, but still waiting for a name!

And lastly today, Sunday. A day of rest in the main. My lovely god parents P&L came round for lunch. I was a bit out of sorts. P&L and M&D all seem in agreement that I'm teething. I realise I'm drooling a lot but I can't help it. I'm also putting anything I can reach in my mouth. Apparently this teething malarky can take a while. I hope not, 'cos it's not been much fun today.

Now, during all this I've been trying out some new stuff. As mentioned, I'm grabbing things and trying to chew them. I've not really got the hang of this yet, but it's a start. I'm also getting chatty - sadly M&D don't seem to understand my simple requests but I'm sure they'll learn. And on top of all that I'm always learning new facial expressions - they're great fun. So much to do!

Love to all,
Arthur  x

Sunday, 14 August 2011

Mindless actions

Dad was on the phone a lot last night as his hospital was so close to the riots in Hackney.  Their Emergency department was treating both rioters and police.  Mum was very worried that Dad would have to go in and help therefore having to drive through the violence but the staff worked very hard and Dad didn't have to go in overnight.  Phew, and thank you! 

The rioting has calmed down but police cars and vans continue to race past the house with their sirens blaring.  This is fine if we are all awake but not so cool when I am trying to sleep!

I visited my Health Visitor on Wednesday and got weighed again - 5.94kg.  I am still progressing along 25th centile and still growing out of clothes at a steady rate.

My first nappy (not used!) and my current nappy with Mum's phone as size comparison.

Swimming on Thursday.  I seem to be getting the hang of the underwater swimming thing and Mum is very good at helping me.  We did 'piggy back' swimming this week with me floating on Mum's back whilst she swam along.  Very cool.  I chatted away to her telling her how much I was enjoying it but I don't think she completely understood and we got out of the pool too soon.  Mum did say she would teach Dad how to swim with me so that will be good.  I won't be at swimming next week but I promise I'll practice in the meantime so Albert, George, Olive, Daisy and Beatrice won't get too far ahead!

After swimming we went to Chelsea and Westminster to see the Chaplain there.  M+D want to have a service there to celebrate ME as my baptism was a bit rushed when I was 3 days old!  A date has been set and Dad is sorting out the food and drink.

Yesterday, Mum and I went out to Gymboree.  I  wasn't really in the mood and was a bit grouchy but Mum jiggled me and sang to me and I calmed down.  We then went to a hairdressers for Mum (I don't have enough hair to 'dress' yet).  We were there for quite a long time and Mum looked quite different when we left.  She kept playing with her hair and when we got home Dad seemed a bit surprised but in a good way.  Photos to follow.

Today we are tidying and sorting out the house, it is weekend after all.  Washing all my bibs, muslins and clothes is a big task now I'm eating solids.  Mum has taken to feeding me with no top on as cleaning me is easier!

Top on pre-feed

Dad is making a book of my blog.  He is spending a lot of time tapping away at his computer.  I don't think he is paying me enough attention and have told him as much!  He says he can't quite believe the journey we have been on or how he and Mum wrote the blog during the very dark times but that he is very pleased they did as we have a record of my first months.  M+D both agree they have difficulty remembering exactly what happened as their brains have intentionally filed those memories far away.

They are enjoying the good experiences all the more.  This week I have learned two new tricks. The first is that I've found my voice. And I rather like it. So I'm making happy babbling gurgling noises at any excuse. And secondly, I'm playing with my toys using my hands to explore and manipulate them.  The concentration on my face is very cute apparently!

Hang on...where's the other one? 

love to all,

Arthur xxx

Sunday, 7 August 2011

Anniversaries and cracking steaks

Hello all,

I'll start where I left off last week - Sunday afternoon: we went to a surprise birthday for my godfather Fred.  We had private room at the "Hawksmoor' in Covent Garden, whose staff could not have been more helpful to me. Many thanks! Mum and Dad said they had their best steak ever.  I had cuddles from Fred, Sherifa and Rosie. 

Super-cute but a bit dribbly

And a day of many celebrations.  My grandad P's birthday, Mum and Dad's 2 year wedding anniversary and most important of all - I have spent as much time out of hospital as I have in (13 weeks and 5 days!).  Mum and I went to coffee in the afternoon and enjoyed the sunshine. Then M+D went out for a special dinner so I had the run of house with my lovely babysitter for the evening - Cat.  

They put jelly on my tummy. Not for me to eat but for a ultrasound scan of my kidneys. No change really.  My right kidney is still twice the size of the left but nothing new there so we will wait until the kidney doctors see me in October.
In the evening we had a barbeque with Cathrine, Fred and Sherifa.  Dad was a 'man' and built the barbeque then made fire and incinerated some meat.  It was very tasty apparently but I went to sleep quite early as it was very hot and the scan had tired me out.

Even hotter! Mum and I went to Greenwich to meet one of her friends, Emily, and her daughter, Alicja.  She was born a week before me and is also weaning steadily.  She is much bigger than me  but Mum said this is allowed as she is supposed to be 6 months old not 3 like me so I'm not too worried.  We had lunch then wandered around Greenwich park.

Lovely views and Mum and Emily had an ice cream - Alicja and I looked super cute but to no avail.  No treats for us!

Me trying to spot an Ice cream - Alicja less bothered!
Rain!!! So it cooled down a bit. I went to physio - learning new tricks and consolidating old ones.  She was very pleased with my progress particularly when I didn't scream when she put me on my tummy and showed Mum how to help me practice sitting. I have to learn to hold onto my feet. I'm not sure it's comfy.
Swimming - more underwater swimming but this time Mum was in charge of holding on to me.  She did rather well and I quite enjoyed it.  Well, I didn't cry too much anyway.

What a busy day. First - Gymboree.  Managed to stay awake for the whole session this time.  We played with tamborines, maracas and we sang songs. 
Then Mum's friend Emma and her dog, Winston, came for lunch. Not sure I like dogs.
Then Mum and I went to see Jude, Jonathan and their new baby, Rory.  He was asleep for the time we were there - well he has only just been born! Mum said he was very light in comparison with me (half my weight actually).  I was super-cute and smiled a lot to show them what Rory will be doing very soon!
Then we all went for dinner with friends of M+D, Marcus and Sophie.  Their son, Robin, was one of my neighbours at Chelsea.  He has grown even more since Mum and I last saw him back in June. He is catching up with me and fast! I think it was good for M+D to catch up with parents who have had a similar experience.  They talked alot, laughed alot and ate alot!  Robin and I slept alot.

Lunch with Grandad and Granny E.  I smiled and chatted to them and they gave me good hugs in return. 

DIY for Dad and playing with my hands for me. Thank you to Sandra for my new curtains.  M+D had fun putting them up!  They match my wardrobe doors and brighten up the room a treat!
I think I have had a busy week - I got rather tired and emotional this evening. Mum was very good with me as I screamed all the way through her attempts to feed me yoghurt. I'm going to go to bed early, so bye bye for now.

Beautiful curtains - huge thanks! (Look closely and you can see my feet!)
Love to all,
Arthur xx