Sunday, December 04, 2022

I don't really sleep any more

I've set something off in my lower back today, going over a pothole on the bike or bending over too many small girls as I slicked back their hair into ballet buns before Lydia's dance school show.

The spasming takes me back into early labour with the girls, listening to Tom breathing as he sleeps beside me sometimes stirring and making little soft humph noises. Those soft kind noises the warm pleasant sound he'd make when comforting me in years gone by.

I don't really sleep any more. If I go to bed after Tom I lie awake with this ache in my chest, mentally pressing on a bruise and letting myself fall into unwanted pictures that arrive of the girls in mortal peril. Or feeling overwhelmed by how much I was, am, was? loved by my family, again bringing a tightness to my chest. It's this bittersweet sensation that one day all that will be gone, or will end somehow.

I'm scared to go to sleep and of what dreams my brain will bring me today, and of waking up stiff and sore, unable to get out of bed easily, an unwelcome reminder of my aging.

Thursday, December 01, 2022

NaBloPoMo 30

Ridiculous day today. Treated myself to a day using the car as so tired and had difficult morning trying to get Lydia dressed and out the house.

Took Lydia to school, then took Phoebe for her second chicken pox jab, then home to sit on the drive whilst Phoebe napped. Tom kindly brought me out some lunch for everyone and a cup of tea as was taking Lydia to dentist at lunchtime.

Changed Phoebe's nappy in the boot of the car when she woke up and then went to school to pick up Lydia. 

She was clearly nervous but was very brave at dentists and all was fine with her teeth. Got two stickers and was very pleased to be having packed lunch in the car rather than school dinners.

Then home again for a couple of hours to get Lydia's ballet kit and do some washing before school finished. Poor Phoebe. We don't actually get to do much fun together on my day at home, she just gets dragged to Lydia things.

She did enjoy walking from the car to school or from school to the car, trying to copy what she's seen Lydia do and balance on the kerb on the path to school. She also wanted to stop and pick up all the leaves.

Doctors wanted to see Phoebe about her bumped eye at 4.30, so Tom was aiming to get home for 3.30 to take her off my hands, but traffic was bad. He rang just as I parked up on the drive, so we left again without stopping and met him at ballet instead.

Lydia refused to get dressed in the car, I got so cross with her. She has no concept of time and I feel so anxious about being late. Managed to get her to get dressed only to find that I'd remembered the time wrong and we had another 10 mins. I hate myself for that. Did mean she had time to comfortably go to the loo before class.

Went back to the car and sat there for the class as it was so cold. 

Home in the bad traffic, trying very hard to change my parenting attitude. Got back a similar time to Tom, good timing so he could hand Phoebe back before going out on call. Freezer tea for everyone, and a Granny phonecall, then bit of TV before bed.

Bed time not too bad, but struggled to be pleasant to Lydia after earlier. Phoebe fed for aaagggeeess until about 9pm. Then got advent calendars and Christmas decs out and filled advent calendars and sorted washing and filled dishwasher. Went to bed so tired in my clothes at midnight, Phoebe woke up at 12.30 and fed for God knows how long. With hindsight probably the chicken pox jab. 

Tuesday, November 29, 2022

NaBloPoMo 28 & 29

Couple of days of calls and meetings work wise, nothing much to report. Struggled with motivation today, often do on cold winter afternoons.

On school run duty both days, Tom taking Phoebe to nursery on Monday, and Granny having Phoebe on Tuesday. Had horrible time getting Lydia ready for school on Monday ending with me shouting at her about putting her coat on.

Today she was fine, having had a couple of hours of Granny attention whilst they got ready in the morning. Annoyingly she was eating her third course of breakfast when I came down still in my PJs with Phoebe at 8am, with hair undone, teeth unbrushed and no shoes and coat on. We'd all slept in because Phoebe had slept in.

Had to pick Phoebe up early from nursery yesterday as she's developed a bit of a black eye/swollen eye after falling over on Friday and after submitting an econsult, the docs wanted pics. She was inconsolable as agreed just woken up from her nap and it took me 10mins to calm her enough to get in the car seat.

Played with kids after school yesterday and today, Lydia was recommended a TV programme called Dog Squad by my mum about real service dogs as kind of superheros. The girls love it, so we've been watching that for telly time. Had a dry run at making Silhouette windows for the local Christmas Trail. Looks like we might have Christmas dinosaurs. 

Gym last night once girls in bed. Putting washing away tonight once they were in bed. 

Monday, November 28, 2022

NaBloPoMo 27

 Woke up nice and late. Went for breakfast then back to the room to chill for a bit. Couldn't quite face a swim after all the buffet.

Next up was a tour of three different garden centres. Went to Hilliers at Botley thinking we'd mooch a bout then get a light lunch, but it wasn't quite big enough to occupy all the time, so had a look round and did some Christmas shopping, then went on to the Garden Society on Allington Lane - heaving there and cafe too busy for us. Next tried Haskins, had a good look round and did some more shopping, then had a cake and drink in the cafe there.

I love looking at all the beautiful decorations. Sometimes I think I'd love to start again with a whole new colour scheme with ours, but that would be very wasteful. I saw some fun fairy lights that were teal, pink, purple and orange too.

After a quick look round Hobbycraft and laughing at having stunk the car out with our leftover cheese from last nights supper, we had to go home and face the music.

Returned to a napping Phoebe and three big kids in the garden, and two tired looking dads. Apparently the kids hadn't been too bad whilst we were away, which is a blessing. Think we'll manage to go away again.

Fed Phoebe when she woke up, which my poor rock solid boobs were very grateful for. She had some lunch whilst the bigger kids played and Jess and Andy packed up to go home. They left mid afternoon. Then telly time for Lydia whilst Phoebe fed on and off, and Tom napped. Tea and bath time, Phoebe managing to throw Lydia's pjs in the bath again when my back was turned. Sigh.

Phoebe not that interested in going to sleep, managed to get downstairs at 8:30pm for a snacky dinner of leftovers and an evening of stuffing nappies and TV. Hard time getting to sleep, always get lots of pictures of terrible things happening to the children when I try and go to sleep at the moment, so had to use meditation track. Very poor quality of sleep tonight.

Saturday, November 26, 2022

NaBloPoMo 25 and 26

Fri 25 Nov

Got up with Phoebe and got her and Lydia ready whilst Tom accidentally slept in. Took Lydia to school with little drama 

Home to work from home with a couple of calls and some more planning work then a cycle ride across town for my therapy session. Mainly talked about Phoebe's birth, think it was a good session.

Got back about 5.30 to grumpy everyone as Tom had had a difficult afternoon getting girls from school and to swimming due to Phoebe face planting as he was just leaving for school. I got them settled eating and helped Tom get stuff ready for our friends coming to stay.

Gave the girls a bath, Phoebe is just obsessed saying "ba, ba" with increasing urgency whilst we wait for it to fill and trying to put everything in, clothes, nappies, bath toys, books.

Lydia was sleeping in Phoebe's room so our friends' kids could have the bed and sofa bed in her room. Fed Phoebe whilst reading to Lydia, managed to get her to sleep before our friends arrived and gave Lydia a hug to try and settle her.

Then Jess and Andy and the kids arrived, and after a quick loo stop Jess and I went off for our spa weekend. Andy and Tom go away for a railway trip with our friend John every year, so this is so we get a child free weekend too.

We're at the Botley Park hotel, just about made our 8pm dinner slot.

Package came with a bottle of prosecco so had that after dinner and then a blissful night of uninterrupted sleep.

Sat 26 Nov

Woke up about 8, breakfast at 845am. Nice buffet breakfast, lots of people watching opps.

Surprised myself by choosing to go to the gym for an hour, then massage and facial. First time Jess and I have had a session where we've been in the same room at the same time together, was quite fun! Best massage I've had in a while too. Really loved it.

After a peaceful sit to recover in the relaxation room, got changed then popped out to get some supplies for the evening.

Afternoon tea at 2.00pm. Can tell I'm a grown up now as I'm very happy to ask for what I want now. Didn't fancy having the afternoon tea in the dining room on the hard chairs so asked if we could have it in the lounge instead. Which was fine! Don't ask, don't get. Spent very pleasant hour or so eating cake and crafting.

Thought we'd then check out the pool. Was closed for cleaning so went in the steam room and sauna first before a little swim.

We're now back in our room eating cheese and grapes and watching Strictly. I am very relaxed...

Friday, November 25, 2022

NaBloPoMo 23 and 24

I'm so old and tired these days that I have to look at my calendar to remember what I've done.

23 Nov

Wednesday so tired after being away. For some reason Tom didn't get up to help with girls so I got them both ready but everything took ages, ended up taking Lydia to school by car as hadn't swapped bike seats back. Home to get Phoebe and her swimming things and set off by bike.

Swimming for Phoebe which she loved, especially jumping in from a sitting position towards me. She's a right little adrenaline junky. Poolside showers weren't working again. Everything's a bit run down at the leisure centre, especially the changing rooms fixtures and fittings 

Home again, Phoebe having inevitably fallen asleep on ride home. Transferred her to buggy and got with making lunch and tidying up, and checking the oil in my car. She had 2 hours sleep, then woke happily and ate her body weight in pasta and peas. Packed for ballet and went to get Lydia.

Arrived 5 mins late but didn't seem to be a problem. Got Lydia on bike and placated her with snacks, then over to ballet. Lot less rainy this week. Got her changed on the veranda without much drama then sat chatting to the only other mum who stayed for our hour. Phoebe mainly sat on the bike eating snacks then when she got grumpy got her out and gave her some milk.

Home without any dramatic stops this week, to picky bits and fish fingers tea for the girls. My friends Jo and Claire arrived about 615 for dinner and to say hello to the girls before bed time. Lydia went to sleep ok, but Phoebe wasn't having it. So I brought her down when our Lebanese take away arrived and she pottered around in her sleeping bag write happily, munching on flatbread like some Disney caterpillar.

Tried putting her back to bed after we'd eaten, so I could actually talk to my friends, ended up having to swap with Tom. Was nice to chat to Jo and Claire, they're such interesting people. They left about 1000pm just as Tom managed to settle Phoebe so we went to bed at this point.

24 Nov

Slept really badly, I blame the wine. Up with Phoebe around 6, Lydia came in to sit with us whilst Phoebe fed. Got it dressed, then took both girls down for breakfast. Tom then took Phoebe to nursery before he went to work. 

Tried wearing my new earplugs whilst getting Lydia ready for school, really helped me cope when she was being shouty.

Drove her to school today as was feeling tired and couldn't face argument when she asked about the car. Used it as an excuse to get fuel and check oil was ok.

Back for day of back to back work calls. Sat in the living room for a change as the messy study was too distracting. Need to book a day with Tom to tidy it as it always gets forgotten and I find I can't get the motivation to tidy a whole room like that unless I'm doing it with someone.

Tom came home to work mid afternoon, both cycled up to get girls. Got tea for girls whilst they watched TV, then they rang granny for a video call today they ate. Phoebe got very excited when she heard the dial tone and started shouting for "Gaga" as she calls my mum.

Bed time a bit tricky as both girls only wanted me and ask three of us kept bumping heads on things or getting scratched in the ensuing chaos. Both went to sleep pretty quickly, and Tom had made a start on our dinner whilst the kids were eating so we could eat promptly when we made it downstairs. Couldn't face housework so watched a couple of programs and went to bed

Tuesday, November 22, 2022

NaBloPoMo 20, 21, 22

Sunday 20 Nov

On Sunday Lydia tantrumed about getting dressed for so long she missed Sunday School. We went to the Triangle for milk and some supplies instead.

Then a quick lunch and a very grumpy exit all round, but went swimming at the Quays as Lydia wanted to go swimming all together. The family swim is in the leisure pool bit with a beach and bubble pools and flumes etc. Went by bike which is always fun. All had a whale of a time splashing and floating about. 

Getting out took us longer than we thought, so ate in Nandos in West Quay as no time to go home and cook. Was really nice, both girls behaved pretty well. Dark cycle home, phoneme feel asleep on bike and kept flopping over, need to find better way of propping her up.

Tom kindly cleaned out and vacuumed my car whilst I packed to go away in the evening

Monday 21 Nov

Up with Phoebe, fed her, then got ready to go to Swindon for a directorate team day. Took Phoebe to nursery for opening time at 7.30pm, eating my toast in the car. Picked up a couple of colleagues at Winchester then drove all of us on to Swindon.

Arrived in good time, even including a coffee and loo stop. Sessions opened with some amazing Punjabi drummers and dancers which got everybody energised. Very good to see colleagues in person who I've not seen since 2019 and hear about 2023 plans. Also had audience session with Lord Tony Hall, one of our new trustees 

Had a bit of a goodbye thing for a colleague moving to a new team in the closing drinks before a Pizza Express meal with those of my immediate team staying over. Was so nice to spend time with them.

Back to Jury's Inn hotel to check in and then out to an art deco cocktail bar for a few drinks with other regional colleagues before bed.

Slept amazingly in king-size bed with no wake ups ...

Tuesday 22 Nov

Woke up at 7am and got myself ready, down for breakfast at 8 with team. Really nice hotel buffet breakfast. Think half the directorate were staying there, made for nice atmosphere.

Then back to HQ for day two. No drummers today, but I was chairing a panel Q&A so I was a bit nervous. It was the external speakers plus our head of Innovation Development, and one of the external speakers was video conferencing in. All worked ok, and lots of people said I did a good job which I'm happy with.

Also heard from our DG who is always so inspiring, especially as an example of female leadership.

Home about 3.30pm back to Winchester in about an hour to drop colleagues off, then lots of traffic home. Made it home for 6pm to do girl bedtime

Saturday, November 19, 2022

NaBloPoMo 19: a day at home

I've realised I get very antsy if I spend all day at home and don't get out.

Tom out 2am to 7am on call, going out just as I was coming back to bed from trying to settle Phoebe.

Girls slept in till past 7am, Phoebe woke me up happily chattering on the monitor. Took my clothes down and fed her so I could get dressed downstairs and not disturb Tom too much. Lydia came in and climbed all over us until we were done and went down for breakfast.

Had breakfast, then watched TV and played until we were done getting dressed. V. annoyed that Lydia was so excited it was Autumn Socks Day that she'd snuck off upstairs to wake Tom up as I'd said we couldn't open our socks until he got up. So much for letting him have a lie in.

Tom got up about 10:00 am in the end. Everyone very happy with their autumn socks, and Phoebe even had an extra pair courtesy of her fairy Godfather Jon.

Lydia's little friend arrived for a play date about 1030am. Spent the rest of the day playing nicely on the whole bar a melt down at lunch time with unfortunate shoving incident on Lydia's part. Friend didn't like lunch so had two pieces of toast instead as I didn't want them to go home complaining of being hungry. Played with dolls, colouring, trains, lots of make believe including camping in the garden, lots of mummies and babies and pets and owners. Phoebe toddling around following them most of the day, had two naps in her cot today, a miracle. I get the same anxious feeling when Lydia has friends over as I used to get when I had friends over as a child.

Friend picked up at 3.30, got Lydia ready for ballet rehearsal, painfully slow but got there in the end, then have kittens get tea and played with Phoebe until she returned. Cold bits for tea for the girls tonight early, we had the same later once they were in bed. Had huge dance party on the kitchen whilst Lydia ate as Phoebe loves music and dancing. Danced around for ages, was really joyous.

Fairly quick and painless bedtime, then downstairs to eat and knit for a bit. Bedtime now.

Friday, November 18, 2022

NaBloPoMo 18: spare day

Lydia had an inset day today, or as she charmingly named, a 'spare day'. 

Phoebe up once in night, then up at 545am so fed her then took her down for breakfast. Lydia also up v. early, got in to bed with Tom but too wriggly so he set her up with breakfast.

Took Phoebe to nursery then home to spend time with Lydia. Decided to have a bit of a yes day to try and spend some nice time together. Needed to go get autumn socks for Tom and thought we might get him a Christmas present too. She wanted to go into town on the bus as that's a big adventure so said yes to that, and took our time to get ready to go out, her dressed in an angel costume because well she's 4 and why not.

Got bus into town, used whizzy ticket on app qr code thing, Lydia asking is this our stop every time. Into West Quay for quick toilet stop, who do kids always try and open the cubicle door before you're finished? Then into John Lewis to look at all the Christmas decorations. I let Lydia take her time, made for a much more pleasant experience all round.

Here are some of my favourite ones, bathing Santa or paintbrush bauble anyone ..?

Once we'd exhausted that source of entertainment, slowly chose Autumn socks. Still haven't posted other godchildren's ones, need to do that tomorrow. I declare it a week long festival .... Sigh....

Christmas present wise, Lydia decided Daddy wanted sweets or chocolate and was quite bored of shopping at this point, kept picking things up and saying 'this will do' in a resigned way. His finally selected gift is very modest so far...

Once everything purchased, sat down to eat the cakes we'd brought as snacks, then on to the Christmas market as we'd clocked the carousel whilst on the bus. Lydia sweetly wanted me to come with, so we rode in one of the chariots together. Also saw an old steam engine that's been traveling around to raise money for Children in Need.

A stop in the Works to buy a Christmas present for one of my Godchildren and then on to Greggs to buy lunch. Sat on the edge of the park people watching whilst we ate and having a nice chat about nothing much. Walked on towards Bedford Place up pick up Phoebe's shoes. 

Lydia spotted the big Christmas tree in Guildhall Square and it inspired her to have a dance, so we did that for a bit. Then she was intrigued by the poppy wreaths at the Cenotaph and we went to look at those and had a chat about what they were for.

Made it to French and Sons to get the shoes, absolute Southampton institution, all wood paneling and mirrors. Mum used to take her nannying charges there to get shoes in the 80s, and has been around for much much much longer than that. Children's shoes are eye wateringly expensive when they're the properly fitting ones, and your kids have v. Wide feet like ours do.

Lydia v. Tired after her early morning at this point, so bank to the park to get the bus home. Again loved the excitement of being on the bus. Home to watch the end of Mary Poppins and unpack and re pack for swimming. Lydia finished off her lunch as afternoon snack whilst I got things sorted.

Off on the bike to swimming, love flying around on it. Lydia enjoyed her lesson. I sat and caught up with shopping and bills whilst I waited. Got in just after Tom and Phoebe. Phoebe v grumpy after a late nap, perked up with some milk. I defrosted some cheesy pasta for their tea whilst Tom watched TV with them.

Shower for Lydia and bath for Phoebe after tea. Lydia v. Cold post swimming, so in bed with dressing gown and hot water bottle and blow dried her hair. Came in to find her trying to read her reading book to herself.

Phoebe did not want to settle, so brought her back down for a bit whilst Tom and I ate and watched some of Stanley Tucci's show on Italian cuisine and culture. Tom then called out for work, Phoebe eventually went down at 9pm after doing a huge poo.

Tom back not long after, had cup of hot choc and watched end of Mr Tucci's show. Just off to bed now.

Today a lesson in not rushing leading to happier mum and Lydia. Need to find ways to apply that when we do have deadlines.

NaBloPoMo 17: family time

I was on school run duty today as I was working from the Micheldever offices to keep my direct report company.

Arrived just in time for the bell, Lydia very happy to go in laden with book bag, waterproofs and PE kit for after-school club.

Drive to office blissfully uneventful, ploughed through many meeting calls then drove home. Got back before everyone else so had 15 mins to lay table before dinner. Tom had prepped the enchiladaa before going out.

Tom back with girls from nursery and school about 5pm, shortly followed by Andy. Ellie delayed by Aoife needing milk post nursery, but still made it pretty much in time for dinner. Nice to all be together after a few weeks off due to illness.

Slightly wild girl bedtime, Tom very grumpy about it. Then sat chatting to Ellie and Andy, always such a delight.

Did tidying up then bed.

Wednesday, November 16, 2022

NaBloPoMo 16: better than surviving

One of the things on self care for busy parents a friend shared with me was to purposefully move more slowly. Physically rushing when you don't really need to can heighten your stress levels.

So tried that today when Lydia was getting cross about going to school - and guess what, we weren't late, and I mostly kept my cool. Phoebe had had me up and down a bit in the night, so had handed her over to Tom at 6.30am and he took the girls down for breakfast whilst I caught up on a little sleep.

Took both girls up to school as Phoebe had potentially her 2nd chicken pox vaccine and/or swimming. Arrived 2 mins before the bell, Phoebe very unhappy with being carried where we didn't have time for slow toddler walking and very happy to walk back to the bike after Lydia had skipped in to class.

Went over to travel clinic at nearby pharmacy for Phoebe's vaccine, but had voicemail saying it hadn't arrived yet and to call to reschedule. There's a worldwide shortage at the moment apparently. So off to swimming, Phoebe full of joy and waving at everyone whilst we were getting changed. Classes running 10 mins behind today so had time for a top up feed which kept her happy. She seemed to enjoy it today, other classes recently have seen her clinging to me, unsure and unhappy, so it was a nice change.

Then home on the bike, Phoebe falling asleep as usual, managed to transfer her to the buggy without waking which was a win. 2 hours whilst she napped, so I cleaned the mould off the conservatory windows, made fairy cakes for Lydia's snack for the week, and made lunch. Then ate with Phoebe and had the usual Wednesday video call with my mum whilst we put some washing away. 

The time between getting back from swimming and going out again for school feels so short! Togged up in rain gear and stacked bike with ballet supplies and just about got to Lydia in time as Phoebe was insistent on walking from bike to school gate again.

Over to ballet in the rain, battling my fear of tipping the bike. Have to get Lydia changed on a veranda outside the community hall where her class is, not so fun in wind and rain. Will try doing it under one of the ponchos if it's rainy again. Then a very soggy hour waiting for her, managed to get Phoebe to shelter with me watching the Twirly Woos on my phone rather than running around the dark residents gardens eating gravel.

Once class was done, home in the increasingly heavy rain. Bike clonked out just on Cobden Avenue, not sure why. Tom was amazingly passing in his car, and kind delivery driver from kebab shop helped me get bike on pavement. He also lent us an umbrella and brought us sweets and some chips for the girls whilst we waited for Tom. Tom took girls home in car and I walked bike home. Nothing obvious wrong with it, will ride with caution on Friday and see what's up.

All changed into PJs for tea of cold bits for girls, then up to bed. Had nice chat with Lydia whilst Phoebe went up with Tom and she finished eating. Fed Phoebe to sleep, then went to help Tom with dinner. Chatted about how we're going to find another £75 a week to cover Phoebe's extra nursery session come Jan. Then went to wrap Autumn Socks Day socks for godchildren before bed.

Tuesday, November 15, 2022

NaBloPoMo 15: werk werk werk

Tom's mum, who normally comes to look after the girls on a Tuesday, was ill today, so Tom had the day off to look after them. He took Lydia to school, and I played with Phoebe, then I spent the day upstairs working whilst Tom pottered about with Phoebe and went shopping. One quick trip out at lunch time to get a parcel. Mainly worked on my new seasonal planner.

Came down for tea at 4:45pm, played with girls then up stairs for a wild bath time. Tried joining my neice's birthday family group call but Lydia too bouncy. Phoebe very tired due to only one nap, so bath time and bedtime pretty swift for her.

Had a rest in bed for an hour after Phoebe went down for her nap, then tried hanging some curtains in the apex of our gable in the loft bedroom - command hooks and lightweight curtains worked well, but wasn't the look we were hoping for.

Monday, November 14, 2022

NaBloPoMo 14: that there big London

I don't quite remember how this morning went. I got Phoebe dressed and left Lydia in her PJ's reading breakfast with Tom I think. Took Phoebe to nursery them on to Airport station to catch train to London for induction session for new team member covering a secondment.

I managed to get slightly earlier train which was nice. Knitted a bit on way there and ate my breakfast.

I love the busy hum of the big city and the people watching opportunities. I like seeing what people are wearing and deciding if I could rock that look.

Picked up coffee and a kolben bun as a snack from Olle & Steen in the Nova building. Meeting was productive, though feels like we're putting back the useful structures we lost during pandemic working.

Home via tube and Waterloo. Can you have a favourite tube station? Mine are two contrasting ones, the glorious sci fi concrete edifice of the Jubilee line escalator hall at Westminster and the cream and green early 20th C. dream of Maida Vale which makes me think of happy London adventures with Christopher Todd.

Had a little time to kill so explored the new pretty empty shopping development in the old international terminal at Waterloo called The Sidings. Felt a bit post apocalyptic at the moment with all the blank shops. Though the Brewdog pub might be a nice waiting for the train spot in future.

Worked part of the way home. Train everso slightly delayed. Then back to kids, milk for Phoebe and cuddles for Lydia before bed. Phoebe has started hitting Lydia back if she is it by Lydia so had to separate them. Playing robots whilst getting ready for bed seemed to help Lydia calm down, must remember that.

Got changed into gym kit when Phoebe finally asleep. Heated up leftover vegan meatballs and tomato sauce to have with spaghetti and tidied away clean crockery from the cleaners visit. Chatted to Tom about email from Phoebe's nursery outlining that they're putting their prices up 7% in Jan as they are struggling to retain staff so want to give them a wage increase. If this doesn't work, will have to start cutting sessions. Tom and I discussed writing to MP etc and possible childcare contingencies.

Then went to gym. In bed now . Looked in on Lydia before bed, with her wind chapped cheeks and poor sore eczema hands, looking like a cherub. I wish I liked being a parent a bit more at the moment.

Sunday, November 13, 2022

NaBloPoMo 13: a nothing sort of day

Tom's signed up to do a 100k walk next year with his nephew Rich to give him something to focus his mind when it comes to exercise. So he was off today on a long walk to kick start his training for that. 

I was up early for Phoebe, then went back to bed. Tom up with the girls and made us breakfast before setting off.

Got girls dressed, hung washing and attempted tidying up with only a couple of shouting matches, them off to church as Lydia loves Sunday School. I suffer through the later service chasing around after Phoebe even though it brings me out in hives to facilitate this. Watched some Strictly with Lydia before church, Phoebe was dancing along, trying to copy, spinning around if they were spinning, that kind of thing. Not bad for a one year old.

Next was picking up a parcel and home for lunch. Lydia wanted to hold Phoebe's hand whilst she rode in the the buggy, and on the way home Phoebe was reaching for Lydia and shouting because she wanted to do it again, which was cute.

Home for lunch, again only minor dramas over eating, Lydia over excited about going to play at her friend Tamsin's house on her own for the first time. Tamsin is one of the babies from our NCT group and for some reason, her and Lydia have really clicked. 

Drove over there as if I'm honest I didn't have the mental energy to faff with the bike and wanted Phoebe to nap on the way which she did. Both big girls vibrating with joy at seeing each other, no backwards glance from Lydia as I left.

Drove into town to see if shoe shop open for Phoebe but wasn't, so drove back to Portswood to go to the big Sainsbury's as wanted to pick up gift for Tamsin's parents Laura and Ben who'd invited us back to dinner later on. Settled on orchid rather than dessert as Laura is expecting baby 2 in a few weeks and has gestational diabetes so bringing a pudding felt unkind. Also picked up some new knickers for me and some school uniform grey joggers for Lydia to wear on forest school day. I have this real bee in my bonnet about spending any money, I always agonise over whether to buy things that are not complete essentials like the joggers, where as Tom would always just buy them. 

Then drove off to Lee on Solent to get Tom. Phoebe had woken when I tried to get her back in the car to leave, having only just stirred when I put her in the buggy at the supermarket. Gave her some oat bar as she was making the kissy noise she does when she wants food, and then she spent the journey singing the 'Hello Children' song they sing at nursery and pointing out trees and dogs and saying wow at things she liked.

Tom tired but ok, popped home so he could change and I have Phoebe some milk, then off to Laura and Ben's. Girls had had a great time mainly playing holidays. Phoebe very excited to play with the big girls and chased them around before dinner. Went up to tidy up Tamsin's room with the girls and Ben, Lydia extremely reluctant to help, but we got there. Had amazing roast chicken dinner, Phoebe absolutely demolished her portion plus 3 more roast potatoes. Home pronto when we'd finished eating as it was past bedtime.

Motored through the bedtime routine, both girls dropped off pretty quickly then packed for work and school tomorrow and tidied up a bit before bed.

Saturday, November 12, 2022

NaBloPoMo 12: birthday

 Another early wake up from Phoebe, managed to get back to bed and stay there for a while before Lydia came in. Tom went and got them started with breakfast and I came down after sleeping in for a bit to catch up on my missed early morning sleep. Tom had made eggy bread which was gratefully received and wolfed down by everyone bar Lydia.

Took girls up to get dressed in their party finery and then got myself dressed - managing to squeeze in a quick shower, something I often find hard to find time for. Helps if I don't want to wash my hair as that takes hours to sort out.

Then downstairs to sort things out ready to go out. Very confused as to why Tom was doing housework rather than packing to go out, and kids had been climbing all over me and shouting, which put me in a bad mood and meant I shouted at Lydia when she started moaning about being hungry when she'd left her breakfast. Set her up drawing birthday cards whilst I got things ready.

Went in separate cars as Tom on call, though he's not actually had to go out anywhere today. Then off to my neice Aoife's first birthday party at Plaitford Village Hall. Arrived only 10 mins late. Girls extremely pleased to see my mum. Always so touching given they don't get to see her often, I know she worries they might forget her. But they always give her a rapturous reception when we have a video call.

Party went very well, mix of family and Ellie and Andy's friends. So much delicious food. I spent most of it trailing around after Phoebe as she ran around in delight. Aoife very much enjoyed being walked round the room and the ball pit. Birthday cake excellently made by Ellie, a representation of Ryan the husky dressed as a strawberry, Aoife's favourite toy.

Got Lydia ready for ballet rehearsal and she went off to that with Tom, whilst I went back to Ellie and Andy's for a cuppa with some other family members. Then home for tea and bed time. Really nice sitting down together to eat party leftovers.

Bedtime a mixed bag, with Lydia randomly biting Tom out of the blue, but both girls asleep pretty quickly. Phoebe wouldn't settle whilst feeding so ended up sat on the floor holding her hand whilst she fell asleep on the cot.

Then Christmas shopping online this evening. 

Friday, November 11, 2022

NaBloPoMo 11: cake

Got up early with Phoebe, in the horrid hours before 6am, fed her and managed to get her back to bed before crawling back to bed myself.

Then up again later and got her dressed. She's very fond of her wooly jumpers knitted by granny, to the point where she'll carry one around at nursery for comfort. Today she toddled off to get the flourescent orange number she's been wearing this week and brought it to me saying 'Dis, dis!' very insistently until I put it on her 

Lydia bounded in for cuddles and then it was the usual whirl of breakfast and dressing. Tom took Phoebe to nursery and Lydia managed to get dressed and washed quickly enough to enjoy some TV time whilst I got dressed myself, a minor miracle.

Whizzed up to school on the bike, Lydia choosing to sit facing backwards today. Think I'm the only regularly cycling parent, but given we live one house over the catchment area, most people walking makes sense. A lot of people drive though, I guess going on to work post drop off. For us, walking, cycling and driving take the same amount of time when laden with kids once you factor in the faff factor of locking and unlocking bikes and trying to find parking spaces.

Home for a quiet day at work, going through booking in team meetings and answering emails and looking at budgets. Tom back with Phoebe mid afternoon after having been to the shoe shop to get her measured and handed her over to our friend Dee for an hour or so he could go to a handwriting meeting at school and a stay and play session.

I then cycled across town to my therapy session and back again via the Company shop to see if they had any bargain pizza to take to my neice's birthday party tomorrow. I'm really enjoying cycling again. Turns out all I needed to enjoy cycling in Southampton was an electric bike to help with all the hills.

Home to girls who were playing nicely with daddy but decided to kick off the minute I saw them. Distracted Phoebe with milk and Lydia with a Friday Night Disco. Phoebe really tried to join in this evening which was adorable, turning circles round and round, clapping her hands and laughing. Lydia and had a full on Strictly moment after Phoebe went up to bed, practicing our lifts and cha-cha-cha.

Bedtime the usual level of manic, managed to leave the house after Phoebe went to sleep to cycle back in to town to meet Olivia at Heavenly Desserts for a nice evening of chatting and dessert tapas. Quick Lidl shop together for more pizza for tomorrow afterwards, couldn't find somewhere to do us a coffee where it was late, so walked Olivia back to her car, and a quick cycle home. Brought back lots of student memories of flying around Southampton by bike in the dark.

Thursday, November 10, 2022

NaBloPoMo 10 : stuck

Phoebe woke really early, so fed her back to sleep and ended up falling asleep in the armchair in her room whilst she fed. Woke up with a crick in my neck, and managed to get her into the cot so I could go back to bed.

Lydia appeared about 6am and elbowed her way into the centre of our bed, all knees and lying diagonally. She wasn't going to lie still or quiet so Tom got her up for breakfast and I got Phoebe and myself dressed. Swapped so Tom could get dressed and he took Phoebe to nursery. 

Getting Lydia ready at the moment takes all my negotiation and compromise skills, juggling 'would you like to use my special comb' and feel breathing. I feel like I've been in a fight for a couple of hours before I even get to work.

Drove Lydia to school as I was supposed to be going on to work at our Micheldever office today. Nice and early so she could have a play in the playground with her little friend who came round for a play date the other day. They went in together, the friend's dad very pleased as the kid had needed walking up to the door by a parent till today.

Set off for the office forgetting I had a 915am meeting. So did that from a country park car park. Then encountered road closures and traffic so didn't end up in the office till after 11am and the start of my next meeting. In Our Time on radio 4 about Bauhaus accompanied me, v. Interesting. Motored through the meeting as I had a 12noon one, and had a lunch break with my colleague Jo, who was the reason why I had gone in 

Odds and ends of analysis in the afternoon then left at 4 to be back for the girls. Had to collect sample pot for Phoebe on way home, then mucked in with cooking dinner and wrangling children until my sister and her family arrived.

Usual joyous family chaos over dinner including a video call from Granny. Can hear Lydia being bouncy about wanting to read her school books as I sit here feeding Phoebe to sleep.

Wednesday, November 09, 2022

NaBloPoMo 9: at home

Phoebe woke up at 5:45, so went to feed her and got her dressed. Tom got Lydia up and took her down for breakfast when she woke up. Phoebe in a super cute cheery mood, shuffling to the window in her sleeping bag and saying "Stah, stah woah" which I think was her way of telling me she remembered watching fireworks out the window the other night.

Took Phoebe down for breakfast and we all ate together before I went to get dressed, with only minor grievances from Lydia for a change. Helped her get dressed with all the usual antics, whilst Tom dressed himself. He was off today as I originally had a work conference necessitating working on my usual non working day, but that had been cancelled.

Tom took Lydia to school, so I had a play with Phoebe and did some washing up until it was time to start work. She sat on the bed for 5 mins whilst I started my first call of the day until Tom got back. They went off to Mottisfont for a gad about today in the sunshine which was nice for them.

I had a few calls today and a few tech support things. Came over all woozy at lunch time so had a nap, and then carried on after grabbing some food. Couple of parcels came today, and spent a lot of time trying to finish the on call rota for next year. I don't really know if this kind of thing is my job, but we needed it, so I thought I'd try and get it done. Lots of evaluation to do tomorrow.

Had to stop work at 4pm to get Lydia ready for ballet and be handed Phoebe as Tom was taking Lydia today. Strapped Phoebe in the carrier on my back for as long as possible to start making oven baked mushroom and bacon risotto and then tried distracting her with emptying pots and pans from the cupboard. When it was in the oven, took her for a nappy change and feed, and did some work whilst she fed on my phone. Her stomach still not right. Had call back from docs later after tea suggesting we continue to watch and wait and do a stool sample.

Lydia not impressed with dinner, but suggested risotto was savoury rice pudding and she gave it a go. Ate more of it than the actual rice pudding I'd saved for her. Girls very cute at dinner table, Phoebe trying to boop Lydia's nose and give her kisses and cuddles unprompted. Lydia had two slices of bread as a dinner chaser, think she might be on a growth spurt again.

Off up to bed, and Tom started Phoebe off whilst I got Lydia started, then the usual swap. Lydia pretty bored of her reading book and pretending to read it  backwards etc. Phoebe was having fun playing boo around the bathroom door. She's in a very cute chatty phase at the moment.

Phoebe got cross during her night feed, think she had trapped wind. Walked her round on my shoulder for a bit and put her down in the cot drowsy, and she dropped off in the cot whilst I sat in the dark.

Need to stuff nappies for nursery tonight. Was supposed to be making a start on some of the what we call 'capital' tidying up in the house rather than the maintenance keeping on top of washing up and laundry but I have run out of steam. 

Things that need doing on the capital list:
1. Finish tidying up the corners of our bedroom
2. Tidy up all the stuff around the edge of the spare room
3. Hang pictures
4. Stick stuff in Phoebe's scrap book
5. 2021 photo book
6. Redecorate part of Lydia's room
7. Sort out toys in toy room
8.Tidy up dresser and window sills in kitchen
9. Tidy up edges of conservatory

Maybe I'll get to some of this this month. I don't get much satisfaction from any sort of tidying up or sorting out, can often not even bring myself to start. What kind of reward could I give myself if I do something like this?

NaBloPoMo 1-8

I've had a difficult week of it mental health wise and I completely forgot about this.

Here's a short recap as something is better than nothing.

Tues 1 Nov

No mother in law to look after Phoebe as she has a hospital appointment so Lydia's godmother Dee kindly said she'd look after Phoebe for the day. 

Lydia on one about getting ready for school. Intellectually I know it's because it is the first week back from half term but my fragile mental state can't take it and we have a shouting match. I spend the day feeling guilty that I'm not modelling good emotional regulation and that she'll be messed up emotionally for ever.

Dee arrived about 930 after I'd finished school run. Did Phoebe handover then drove to Swindon for meeting. Absolutely pouring with rain, drove Lydia to school too as didn't want to get meeting finery wet.

Took ages to get there in rain, felt like little kid at big school as I always do when I go up to head office. Had quick lunch in canteen and up with emails. Session on planning a new process went well, think I represented my business areav appropriately.

More rain on drive home, home in time to help with bedtime. No idea what I did in evening. Phoebe sick in the night, had been sick in the day too but otherwise happy with Dee.

Wed 2 Nov

Rough night with Phoebe being unwell, no swimming for her!

School run for Lydia, returned ear defenders we borrowed from a friend for a wedding and got soaked in rain, had to use emergency ponchos. Worked well over baby bike seat.

Then home with Phoebe all day. She was sick a couple of times, and had diarrhea. Took  Rang my granny then my mum for a chat. Did laundry, Phoebe helped by taking it in and out of washing machine and trying to get in and out machine multiple times. Off her food, only wants breastmilk.

School run again, then left Phoebe with Tom whilst took Lydia to ballet. Very rainy, managed to get her changed on porch of community hall as no place inside to get changed post Covid. As we get there straight from school, she has time for snack and getting changed before class. Didn't fancy standing in rain the whole hour so went to get a cup of karak chai from Portswood High St, then nursed it to stay warm whilst chatting to the other mums.

Very wet cycle home, glad I bought Lydia's waterproof suit. Tea and bedtime routine, don't remember what I did in evening 

Thurs 3 Nov

My turn to stay home with Phoebe first as still had horrible nappies so can't go to nursery.

Horrible morning trying to get Lydia ready for school, everyone very cross with eachother. Tipped bike over trying to set off with girls on . Protective frame thing around kids seats did it's job and girls fine, only me with a bumped knee and bruised ego . Was trying to rush and start of up hill with an adverse camber and got gears and brakes and pretty much everything wrong. Another passing cyclist helped me get bike back up and and I bit the bullet and got back on and cycled to school the down hill way. Trying to model reliance to the kids, evening though I was shitting myself about it the whole way. 

Home to try and sit through a couple of meetings but Phoebe a bit too little to be distracted and took leave for the afternoon. Drive Phoebe over to a Hedge End M&S to see if she'd nap in car and to pick up some Xmas presents I'd ordered. She came over all green and shivery a couple of times but no vomit. Sat on drive whilst she finished her nap. 

Tom got Lydia from after school club. Difficult bedtime, Phoebe wouldn't settle.

Fri 4 Nov

Another difficult morning. Did school run, left Phoebe with Tom as he was off today with Phoebe.

To railway station to go to London after school run for team meeting and colleague's leaving do, laden with gifts and cake. All trains delayed, got there at 11. Nice to work in same room as colleagues.

Both tea and cake bit and pub bit of leaving do went well and colleague liked their gift. Going to miss them but they're going on to greater things. Nice to spend day as grown-up too, left at 9pm to make sure I got home ok.

Looked like Tom had nice afternoon with Phoebe at Hinton Ampner from the photos.

Sat 5 Nov

Terribly tired after my late night, very grumpy with everyone, everyone grumpy with me. Poor Tom. Left very late to visit friends due to everyone's bad mood. 

Made it to Wallingford to see friends. Lydia had great day playing with their little girl. Embarrassed by her behaviour at times and by my parenting. You know when you're sitting there awkwardly because you're having to watch your friend discipline your kid? Yeah my friends had to do that a few times. 

After tea we went out to the big fireworks display in their town for a kids display of quieter fireworks, which were very good. Lydia disappointed that couldn't toast marshmallows on the giant bonfire! Had put kids in PJ's before display so we could go home straight after. 

Sun 6 Nov

Tom on call and called out after breakfast. Play date for Lydia with school friend. Really nice mum, had good chat whilst kids played. Always a bit chaotic when I'm solo parenting but think it went ok, only one incident of sibling angst. Feels a bit like a first date when it's a play date with a new family. Took girls after up pick up second hand trike for Phoebe's Xmas present and treated Lydia to drive thru for tea as hadn't factored in time of day. Bed time wasn't too bad surprisingly. All watched fireworks out the bedroom windows, both girls entranced. Tom back in early morning.

Mon 7 Nov

Managed to remove myself from Lydia after shouting at her rather than continuing to shout at her this morning, feel like such a failure that her emotions trigger my poor mental health so badly. Had shame hangover all day and felt dreadful we woke Tom whilst he was sleeping it off.

 He took over whilst I got dressed, but still had huge faff trying to get Phoebe to nursery and pick up the new trainers from the pick up point I'd ordered for Lydia and she needed that day for PE. Did get Lydia to school just about on time then took myself back to bed to cry about my failure as a parent and did work emails on my work phone and read up about emotional regulation and napped. Grateful for supportive employers and flexible work. 

Got up and worked from my sofa in afternoon. Complete brain fog all day, tired and shaky. Helped with girls in evening, then went out to spa for evening with NCT friends whilst Granny helped get girls to bed. Very nice thermal spa set up at Hilton hotel at cricket ground. 2 hours of relaxing and chatting did quite a lot for my mood.

Tues 8 Nov

Wore earplugs during getting ready for school faff, tolerance levels much increased. Got to school just after bell but in time due to Lydia faffing but tried to not let it get me flustered. 

Both Tom and I working from home today, Phoebe with Granny. Joined her for lunch, Phoebe woke up just as I was going back upstairs so gave her bit of milk as my boobs felt like they were going to explode.

Day of lots of meetings and trying to catch up on missed work. Stopped at 445 to help with girls tea. Both girls pleased to see me when I came down. Watched TV with Lydia whilst feeding Phoebe until tea ready, then girl bath time. Neither wanted to get out the bath. Listened to Lydia read then fed Phoebe to sleep.

Tom out at home group tonight, did washing up and tried to catch up with work, Phoebe woke up with diahrearra again about 9pm. Felt really panicked and had to ring tom to ask him to come home at 1030pm

Thursday, April 14, 2022

Things to remember from parenting Phoebe

 At two weeks:

Sheer elation after delivering you, couldn't believe that I'd done it vaginally and that you were actually here after being so worried.

Finding out you were a girl and being relieved as we hadn't had any boy names!

Everything coming back to me about feeding and sleeping and changing nappies. 

Getting to come home very quickly because of Covid and your granny and grandpa being here to welcome you.

Your big sister Lydia being so excited to meet you, wanting to hold you right away, saying " I love you, you're so little, you're so cute" , wanting to try and carry you, change your nappies, helping me try and feed you, so proud of being a big sister.

Your little turtle head and neck, trying to lift your own head, so strong, looking out at us through one half open eye 

Your grunts and squeaks, the sheep like maa noise when you cry.

Lydia calling you "Pheebs" or "Pheeb"

Moving slowly like a sloth in treacle

 First smile 4 September

At 5 weeks:

Holding on to my clothes when you feed.

Batting my breasts between your fists to make it the right shape to feed from

Saying "a goo" when smiling

Slept through 15 sept

7 weeks

All calm and wide eyed at first swimming lesson, happily going under the water

Talking back to us and smiling, with lots of goos 

8 weeks, lots if chats whikst you sit in your bouncy chair. Grinning for Lydia when she comes to entertain you by leaning over and tickling you with her curls

9 weeks recognising Lydia and bring very happy to see her. 

Story time with daddy, at bedtime, how good he is with you

13 weeks, 'knitting' your blanket or muslin.

First laugh playing shaky hands with mummy Tuesday 9 Nov

When I pick you up at night for the dream feed, you are lying with your hands by your ears, keeping them there whilst I pick you up.

Grandpa Bear, my Dad, spending ages sitting on the floor talking to you whilst you're on your playmat, trying to get you to smile.

16 weeks

Giving you your morning kisses, lots of kisses on each cheek, or nomming your cheeks, making you smile and blissfully close your eyes and sometimes even laugh

4 months

Watching daddy read you a story, you trying to turn the pages, all bundled up cosy in your sleeping bag

Lying on the floor together with our legs in the air playing whilst you burble and smile

21 weeks

26 Dec, rolled onto side for first time

Positively vibrating with excitement when people are playing with you

Your huge wide mouthed gummy smiles of joy 

Reaching out to touch my face. Stopping feeding to grin up and me and purr with happiness.

5 months

Just about sitting unaided

12 Jan rolled over back to front

Making cooing noises like a pigeon

Sitting up to the kitchen table in the highchair with a pile of toys in front of you, chewing your narwhal vigorously and reaching for the next toy as you knock one on the floor, whilst watching all the action in the kitchen excitedly

Beaming up at me whilst strapped on my front in the carrier, cooing and laughing at the trees

Loving Friday night disco night, laughing and singing whilst I dance you around on my hip, watching the coloured lights on the ceiling

Sitting in your highchair at Wickens Wednesday dinner waving your arms as you babble 'mamamamama' almost as if your were conducting the dinner party conversation

Holding the tail of the plait in my hair as you feed.

Making happy faces at me in the dark whilst feeding when you should be asleep

Charming waiters and shop assistants by being so happy

Huge belly laughs for Lydia

Looking just like glitter granny

Making very confused faces when eating for the first time

Holding your own hands like a great thinker

Sitting up strongly from 6 months onwards

7 months and flapping your arms and bouncing on your bottom trying to move to get to things, launching yourself forward and rocking back and forth, one single crawl forward then flop

Growling with joy like a little bear, shouting with joy when you see other babies or people talk to you, with your huge gummy smile

Tipping your head on one side when playing like you're acting coy, copying if other people do it

Protesting loudly if you're sat up to a table and other people are eating but there's no food for you

Very slowly signing milk sporadically at 7 months

Making concerned 'mumumum' sounds if you're hungry or wet, or if we leave the roo

7.5 months starting to clap hands

Happy to sit on the floor bashing toy pans together, making a big noise as I do house work around you

Leaning out of a cuddle stretching out arms if you want to go to someone n

8 months, crawling backwards and getting stuck under the so

The utter intimacy of you sleeping on me after you finish your bedtime feed, your little hand resting on my chest, the rise and fall of your breath, the huff when you sigh in your slee

Starting to cuddle us back.

More things to remember from parenting Lydia

17 months:
Granny and mummy taking about the snacks in the boot of the car, you start looking in your Welly boots for them.

Getting the step stool and dragging it up to the kitchen counter so you can teach the butter dish and help your self to chunks of butter with your finger

18 months saying: "bye bye bye" instead of bye-bye.

Staying "Grandad Sleep". Every time grandad was napping when we visited him in France.

20 months: 

caring for your baby doll making beds for her and patting her, carefully spreading out the blankets so they are perfectly flat. ep-pant for elephant. 

Saying "O-kay" all the time instead of yes

Stopping breastfeeding to say "hey" during Jingle Bells 

Saying "Farmer Christmas" for Father Christmas

Saying "Fairy Liii- gghts" . And saying 'more' when you see them. And wow and pretty

22 Months:  saying "Hello Moon, Hello Venus Hello stars" when looking in the sky. 

23 months:
favourite foods of pomegranate and olives. 
Saying "Little person" instead of girl or boy when playing with toys. 
"Dank oo"  

24 months
" The phone is singing" when the phone rings.
Wanting to do things 'togebba' together.

Lydia just having an afternoon bath. Asked for 'champagne on mummy' she meant shampoo... 😂

25 months: 
Calling cockle shells "clapping shells"
Saying "Oh my goodness" And "how exciting"
Playing runaway run together and walking backward beep

First story:  "there's red dinosaur, it's playing hide and seek, it's in on my fingers, it's eating them hungry dinosaur eating strawberries"

Putting all my hairpins in your piece of bread and declaring them candles in a birthday cake

2 years 6 months:

I'm a dancerina

It's a bouncerine

My hair is like a tunnel mummy ( ringlet)

Using "actually" and "I expect" in sentences

Patting your back when giving you a cuddle.

Cuddling mummy and daddy 'togebba'

Last breastfeed feed Sunday 25 October 2020

'Bears go grrr and cuddles'

2 years 9 months

"It's all ankley" for its all wrinkly
 'Ahoy Misshapes' when playing pirates

2 years 10 months

Starting up give complements
"I think I did that another week"
Aren't we the pair" when all dressed up to go out
Having a dance off at the Friday night family disco

3 years old I'm Elsa, you're Anna, Daddy's Kristoff, and you need to have two babies, one to be sven and two to olaf

Saying Hello Baby and cuddling my bump

Asking Granny and Grandpa if you could go on a walk with them on your own, and leave mummy and daddy at their house.

Farm sensory for pharmacy

Asking "can I see your nipples?" To auntie Ellie.

Telling uncle Andy to be careful not to drop a glass as you might cut someone and they might die!

I'm the picker, mummy's the milker and daddy's the cuddler for the new baby. (Picker of clothes)

The electrician man (politician?) On the radio says we can go in people's houses again

3 years 4 months: after big school, you're a grown-up and you go to work. I want to be a tree cutter downer for my work ( tree surgeon? )

Cinderella cheese for mozerella cheese

Cutting own fringe and trying to glue the hair back on at the back

Asking Daddy to draw a picture of herself holding Phoebe in golden syrup on her porridge

Wants to be a car fixer - person who mends cars (mechanic)

 rubbing your cheek on Phoebe's hair and cheeks 'like you do mummy, she's so soft'

Telling granny all her preschool children could live here so she could stay and not go home

Tickling Phoebe with your hair to entertain her or giving her your knuckle to suck to test if she's hungry

My lip is healing down

Why is there a statue of a postman ( lord Mountbatten statue in town)

Look at my electric bottom for sliding down the stairs

3 years 11 months
The sun is leaking

Being so loving to Phoebe, wanting to hold her all the time

Grandpa we've got your tea ready, I carried your spoon.

Granny I want to keep you at my house.

I always want to go on the left side because I begin with a L

Your excitement at going on the boats on Scilly

Playing fancy cafe at bedtime, asking daddy very seriously what he wants to order, we've got sausage rolls and sandwiches. And for your wife?