Lydia only up once in the night - bit better!
Woke up at 6:45am to Phoebe grinning at me. So cute! She'd weed through her night nappy so had to completely strip her and the cradle before her feed. She was starving so wrapped her up in a blanket over her nappy to feed her. I soaked through my PJ top with milk whilst trying to get her changed so I was topless too for our feed, accidental skin to skin time. Good job having a baby on your lap is like hugging a hot water bottle. Spent a lot of time all morning praying and anxiously checking my phone to see if my sister Ellie had had her baby, as we'd been texting yesterday and last night as she went through a long labour.
Lydia came in for a cuddle for a bit, then I got her dressed whilst Tom sorted Phoebe's outfit. Lydia had her hair in little plaits today, which looked adorable. Then downstairs for breakfast, pancakes again. I was looking after both girls today as Tom's mum is having a well deserved holiday. I did the world's smallest amount of washing up and sorted bags ready to go out whilst Lydia played and had a bit of TV time, then fed Phoebe, who had been having a kick and play whilst I worked.
Next up we tried to get out the house to go to the art gallery. Lydia has really been enjoying the Mister Maker's Arty Party programme so I thought we'd go to art gallery and have a look about. I have so many happy memories of going to the gallery as a kid whilst my gran worked there as a gallery attendant. My favourites are dancing about in front of the hidden camera that fed a TV in a filing cabinet in some installation, advising fashion students from Solent Uni or the Institute as it was then that putting 'Blue with a Black Border' on a hat was going to be easier than copying something figurative and gaily being sat there copying a painting when some bloke came to tell me I was doing a good job. Turns out it was the artist of the work in in question though I forget who!
However just as I was pulling off the drive, a warning light came on in the car for the engine coolant, so we had to go to get some of that first. Whilst Tom was ordering what I needed, I changed Phoebe's nappy and took an extremely happy video call from my brother and sister-in-law to show me that my first niece, baby Aoife Hope had safely arrived. I was completely overwhelmed with emotion as I'd been so worried for them, and was also up to my elbows in poo which made for quite a short but funny phone call full of happy tears. She is absolutely beautiful, and they are all currently doing well but are very tired understandably. Lydia was so excited too, and wanted to video call them but I convinced her to do a video message instead so as not to disturb them, in which she told them she loved the her name, so sweet.
Got the coolant, filled the car up with it, and it was lunch time already, so went to IKEA first for some lunch in their cafe and to pick up some photo frames. Was much busier than I expected, but managed to steer clear of most people and Lydia was amazing about wearing her mask. She had chicken nuggets and chips and I had a prawn open sandwich and some salmon, followed by donuts. Think Lydia ate most of mine though! It was really nice to have a positive time with Lydia. She does love a cafe lunch. Phoebe amenably slept through all this.
Then we walked up to the gallery. I'd forgotten how far it was for little legs but Lydia managed admirably. Where we weren't in a rush, I let her kick all the leaves and walk on all the walls. Something I used to do around the civic centre too as a kid. Once we arrived Phoebe had woken up and was a bit grumpy, so we went to get the baby change/disabled loo key from the library. Phoebe was dry, but Lydia and I both needed to loo. Top town centre tip that, the loos in the art gallery are nice and clean!
Turns out Phoebe was hungry, so I worked out a way to kind of feed in her the carrier, advanced parenting skill unlocked there. We had a quick look around the gallery at 3 year old speed. Her favourites were the one with the elephant dung and one of a man in a fedora hat. I had a speed read of the interpretation of the Arthur Jeffress exhibition, which was very interesting, would like to go back and look in more detail.
Phoebe needed a proper feed, so on the way back from the gallery, we stopped in the Millvina Dean memorial garden for a sit down and a snack. It was a great place to stop for a little while, Lydia was entertained by finding conkers and the traffic going by.
We went back to the car via Asda so I could buy Lydia her 'well done for completing your sticker chart for good behaviour' comic. She chose a Paw Patrol one this time with a plastic tat spy kit, she was very taken with it. Lydia also adorably insisted we needed to buy Aoife a cuddly toy, so we chose her a nice soft rabbit comforter. Found a lonely IKEA trolley all the way up by Decathlon on our way back to the car, so gratefully took my rucksack off and stuck it on the trolley and put Lydia in the child seat, which saved my back a bit. I'm suffering now from carrying all 7.5kg of Phoebe all day.
The parking machines at IKEA were on the blitz so our parking was free for the day which was a pleasant surprise. Home for a bit more TV time for Lydia whilst I had a cup of tea and sit down and Tom made dinner. Bacon, crispy kale and roast veg warm salad for tea. Then playing with both Lydia and Phoebe and sticking my pictures in picture frames before the girls bedtime. Phoebe had missed the 5pm nap so was very grumpy just before bed, and has gone to sleep on a very lumpy mattress where I was trying to get the foam filling into the freshly washed and barely dry cover whilst she cried.
Have been helping a friend with a job application this evening since, and then hopped on here to write up. Bed time very soon. Am so happy and excited for my sister and brother in law. They are such lovely, kind, generous people and they are going to make wonderful parents.