Apologies for the language in the title but it is doubly apt, both in terms of the weather we have been promised for this month and the fact that it is June! May flew by so quickly and as you regular readers will have noticed I only managed one update all month. Very remiss of me, you will be going off and reading other websites if I am not careful!
As you will know May is quite a busy month at work with the end of many of the sporting seasons that we cover. Not saying that June and July are empty but let’s just say that the freelancers are picking at bare bones during those months at mediahouse. This we hopefully allow me to spend a little more time with the family and take precious days off to take advantage of the weather (and the Merlin passes!).
With all this time between updates no doubt you will be expecting a plethora of anecdotes (is that the collective noun for a group of anecdotes?) and a gallery of photos (again?) unfortunately you may be a little disappointed. I have been a busy boy!
The biggest news of the last few weeks is that Amélie has begun to move. I hesitate to use the word crawl, she kind of creeps. Not in a commando elbow over elbow kind of creep more by sheer willpower and energy-sapping full body motions. But it is movement. Like her big sister this initial movement has primarily been in reverse. It is that Goofus bird syndrome all over again. Amélie however is still not rolling over on her own accord. I think it is because she has learned that if we put her on her back and she cries loud enough, we will either roll her over or pick her up, or Éowyn will go over to her and see what the matter is and entertain her. Éowyn is very good like that. She seems to know exactly what to say or do to make Amélie laugh. Amélie will quite often have complete giggling fits when her big sister makes strange noises, or pulls silly faces at her, and Éowyn seems to revel in the adulation from her little fan. Thus I don’t believe it to be laziness, the lack of desire or the inability to roll but merely an extreme manifestation of tool use; where other members of her family are the tools!
Amélie has had a bit of a torrid time of late with her teeth. Not that any have come through yet but she is definitely feeling the pain of teething. Her little cheeks are red, she is dribbling and anything that is within reach is stuffed into her mouth and given a good chew. If you put yourself in their little booties, it must be an awful pain and not knowing what it is must make it worse. Although it is something that we have all been through and it hasn’t affected us that badly. However teething certainly affects the parents. With Amélie is so much pain she finds it hard to sleep. Understandable. However that in turn means that Mommy and Daddy aren’t allowed to sleep either. Three days of sleep depravation is difficult. We had forgotten how difficult it was. I don’t think that it is helped by the fact that we now also have Éowyn (in a nice way). For when Éowyn was going through the same at least we only had to care for her. Now we need to be fully compos mentis with her during the day after we have been up all night with Amélie. Also I was on shift work so it wasn’t a case of no sleep but I only need to get through one more day at work. Now it is no sleep for three day and I still have 4 more days at work!
Éowyn is using the slight perceived weakness and the fact that Amélie is seemingly getting more attention to push the boundaries again. She knows the pattern of how we ask her to do things. Nicely at first, then more firmly, then more firmly then a three second count to punishment (naughty step, quiet time, telly off, etc). She is now waiting until 2 of that countdown before even moving to do what we have asked her to do, when previously it was rare that we would even begin to count. She is a little minx and it can be very frustrating on less than 3 hours sleep.
She has also has begun to bite. We were warned about this but other friends that about the age of 2 ½ years that kids find that they can hurt each other with biting. Well, Éowyn has discovered that too! However I think that may have been cured. She had bit Lucinda a couple of times but had not bitten me. Not until the other night. She bit me on the arm and it hurt (in fact it drew blood!). In a mixture of pain and anger I shouted quite loud (louder than I normally shout, although still relatively calm) at Éowyn and told her that she was naughty. Unfortunately not only did my voice come out louder than usual, it also came out deeper than usual (and for those of you than know me that could be quite scary). It did scare Éowyn and she was quite frightened to come to me for a while. In fact I had to sit with her and give her a cuddle to make her feel a little less scared. I did explain that the reason Daddy shouted at her was because she had bit him and that it was naughty to bite and that she was not to bite anyone again. It seems that although it wasn’t the method that I would have chosen it has worked, for she has not bitten since.
Apart from the biting, Éowyn has been a joy (as always). She picked up a cardboard roll (from the centre of the toilet roll) out of the recycling bin the other day, put it to her eye and said ‘Ah-arr Captain!‘ in her best pirate voice. We then had to be pirates for the rest of the night. Not that I am complaining, it was great fun. I have also introduced her to the delights of my favourite show when I was a child, The Muppet Show. I have a number of Muppet Show DVDs and so we sat a watched one together (to try and wean her off CBeebies and Toy Story 3). I wasn’t sure that she enjoyed it, although she did sit there and watch it. The next day, however, she said, ‘Daddy, can we watch Kermit the Frog again.‘ That’s my girl!
Continuing the pirate theme we took her to Legoland (those Merlin passes are wonderful things) to see the Pirate show they put on (which as an aside is very well coreographed and well worth watching if you are there). We explored a little more of the park that we hadn’t visited last time (although again we had chose half-term and it was quite packed), but because of the number of people we didn’t get to go on many things. However she completely surprised us by asking to go on a ride on her own. It was one of those ride where a swing is suspending on a carousel. We explained that if she went on it, that she wouldn’t be able to get off until the ride stopped. She was happy with that. She we sat her in a swing on the inside of the ride (so it didn’t go as fast) and was delighted to see how much she enjoyed it. In fact she was swinging the seat from back to front to try and make it go faster. No fear!
Before we visited Legoland we had decided to measure Éowyn, to find out how tall she was. So we got her to stand against the wall and we made a little mark with a pencil on the wall and measured it to the floor. She is 98cm tall (just over 3 foot 2 ½inches in old money) which for a 2 ½ year old is quite tall. Unfortunately we didn’t factor in the barrier this broke. So while Lucinda was on the phone to her Mom and Éowyn was desparately vying for her attention a little light must have go off in her head. She picked up the very pencil we had used to mark her height and went over to the same piece of wall and drew all over it. I suppose we deserved that one! Fortunately in light of the kitchen upgrade we had already decided that we were going to redecorate the remaining downstairs living areas and so that has just cemented that decision. Thanks Éowyn!
We have some sad news in the past week, Lucinda’s parents West Highland Terrier Harvey was put to sleep. He was an old dog that had lived a good life but he was in a lot of pain and there was nothing that the vets could do. It doesn’t make the decision any easier and it doesn’t make the pain any easier to bear knowing it was the right thing to do, especially for Lucinda’s dad. We have tried to explain to Éowyn but she is a little too young to understand and with probably just forget that he isn’t there any more, which will be a shame as she would quite often lie on the floor next to Harvey. He will be sadly missed.
I will leave you with a few photos and a promise not to leave it so long before the next update.
Peace and love