Sunday, August 28, 2016


This week I took Jamie to the splash pool at one of the local parks. It was the first time - we needed the weather to be warm enough to have a splash, but not so warm that we would be toasted alive, and we needed to not have any other commitments, and we needed to not be ill... But it all came together and at last we've done it.

At the splash pool

I wasn't sure how Jamie would take to it but he seems to have had fun. I have the distinct feeling that it was helped along by the social cues of the other children clearly enjoying themselves.

We discovered a few pitfalls that I hadn't anticipated but probably should have, the biggest one being that:
- Jamie needs to be holding two hands to walk
- I can't walk without one hand to support myself
- The splash pool is just a bit too deep for me to be able to shuffle on my knees, unless I'm prepared to get properly wet to the waist, which I'm not, because it's a free facility and therefore lacks luxuries like changing rooms and it's not really the done thing for an adult to strip off in the middle of the kiddie play area.

I settled, instead, for a minor case of Soggy Bottom from sitting on the edge of the pool and restricted Jamie to walking within arm's reach. Next time we'll see about my PA having a skirt or shorts so that she can join us in the pool. But there will definitely be a next time.

Sunday, August 21, 2016


Another tent picture this week.

baby smiling in a small tent

The tent previously featured in Week 20 as Jamie's little chill out spot, and it continues to serve this purpose very well. Now that he's a bit bigger, we've put the inflatable mattress back in. He hated it when we first tried it, but that was probably because moving himself about on a stable surface was quite difficult enough and a squishy surface was just beyond comprehension. Now, at 10 months, he seems to quite like it... and, sometimes, he actually has a nap in there!

Saturday, August 20, 2016

If you were a parent you'd understand

One of the things that really irritated me as a childfree adult was being told that I could not possibly understand something - love, tiredness, forward planning, laundry, whatever - because I did not have a child.

As a parent, I'd like to reassure all childfree readers that there are only two things I "understand" now that I didn't before. These are:

1. The impulse to talk about poo. I've resisted the urge to post online about the contents of Jamie's nappies. His business is his business. On the other hand, as with all babies there are days when a particularly remarkable nappy really is the most interesting thing to have happened that day or when dealing with it without needing to nuke the site from orbit is truly an achievement, and at those times it is an effort to hold on to social proprieties.

2. The challenge of the nice cup of tea and a biscuit, an interesting combination of relaxation and stress. If you can pull it off, there's few things more restorative than a hot cuppa and a biscuit while the baby sleeps. But the tension is high, as one wrong move could wake the baby, resulting in a shortened nap, a screaming child, no biscuit and a cup of tea which, by the time the screams are quelled, has gone almost undrinkably cold. It's like the most incredibly mundane yet incredibly frustrating computer game ever.

Sunday, August 14, 2016


This week saw Jamie's first experience of an outdoor playground.

baby crawling through a wooden tunnel

At ten months, Jamie is officially still a bit small for most play areas, and with it being the summer holidays as well, the local parks are rather dauntingly full of great big primary-school-age children. But we were able to have a bit of a play on the less popular play equipment and I think he enjoyed it. The slide he was neither scared nor excited about, but he spent quite a while with this tunnel.

Sunday, August 07, 2016


Just a nice morning relax before starting the day proper.


Jamie is a very chilled out baby, on the whole. It is lovely to just be calm together.

In other news, those two top front teeth he was struggling with are through. According to the various books of baby wisdom, the rest of teething should be bearable until we start on the big molars.

Sunday, July 31, 2016


I don't seem to have many pictures this week where Jamie is facing me, which surprised me a bit. So here is Jamie doing his own thing.

Baby sitting in a white box, toys in and around it

He does like this box. It's nominally the blocks box, where his assorted fabric and rubber blocks are kept, but really anything can end up in it. The box itself is a cheap one from IKEAs Skubb range, intended to be used inside drawers to keep them tidy. We've found them invaluable throughout the last year - for organising nappy supplies, for sorting different sizes of baby clothes - but Jamie is opening up all manner of possibilities for them as hats, flail weapons, and as in this example, self-containment.

I'm not sure at what age he will develop the sort of imagination that will see boxes like this become coracles, spaceships, teddy-cots and so on, or for that matter if it develops before or after he gains the language skills to tell me that's what it is today.

Sunday, July 24, 2016


It has been too hot here this week. The Safer Sleeping guidelines say we shouldn't let Jamie's room get above 24c/75f - well, since Monday and despite our best efforts, I don't think we've managed to get anywhere in the house that comfortably cool!

On top of this, teething continues. He has two bottom teeth that are definitely fully out and visible from across the room. Then there's about five pale lumps on his upper and lower gums, with one sharp corner *just* beginning to poke through on the upper gum. He's doing his best, but it's obvious he's quite sore and he's pulling some spectacular faces.

baby chewing a pot of ice and water

But, we've done everything we can to keep him cool, and this is part of the effort. Half a dozen sterile storage pots, filled with water and then frozen. We've allowed them to partially melt before giving them to him, and they seem to have helped a great deal with both the temperature and the teeth.

I hope both issues resolve themselves soon though, and if anyone has any tips we might not have thought of, do let me know!