keeping up

So like anyone starting something – I’ve just begun to find out how little I know! The boys have had 3 weeks at nursery, which means I’ve had 6 half days to start interacting with the world again (except one morning Ollie was ill, and one afternoon spent sorting out admin). Gosh it’s changed since I went into the labour ward back in ol’ 2005! I had thought I was quite sociable, having made many friends at various toddler groups, and re-kindling old friendships, and *STILL* making new friends at various toddler groups. But now that I have stretches of time without constant interruptions I have let the new world in. I’ve actually begun using my twitter account. I’ve found out that a lot of the world happens in short bursts of text on the internet, and YouTube is more like dropping a phrase into a sentence than actually going-to-look-up-something-to-watch.

I can completely understand that some people will just not want to take part in this world, but I DO! I feel a bit conspicuous and the “new girl” at the moment, which is all the more reason to grab it by the horns before it’s too late!

As part of my newfound tech-hugging, I thought I’d post some YouTube on my blog. Now, I’ve been looking up music from adverts I like for a long time, even back in the day when it took some routing through buggy forums to find out what it was, but I like the track used in the new Alfa Romeo advert. It’s not a new track: “Technologic” by Daft Punk, but I like it, so I was playing it on last.fm when David, still my main source of outside-worldness said that I should “check out the two girls doing a video to it on YouTube!” so here it is:

Also clever:

It obviously became a bit of a cult, as there are loads of people doing similar vids, though these were the best I found.



Not much to report at the moment, but here are some nice pics.
We went out to lunch today, after Saturday Morning Toddler Group. We decided to try Pizza Express again, even though our last experience was awful. Last time we were put in the middle of a very crowded room and then waited for nearly an hour for any food to arrive – the kids were climbing the walls – nothing to keep them occupied. This time, we had a table next to a wall, which was spacious, and light and airy, we had to wait a little, but we were offered a free salad and free coffees to make up for it! The kids meal included a Bambiccino (or something like that) which the kids loved:


It had been a busy morning, so we got a rare treat (after some extra circuits of the park):

I got some nice photos from our trip to Wisley Gardens, but I’ve stuck them over on the family blog.

David and I are really getting good work done in our short sessions while the kids are at nursery. It’s really perking me up to be able to do this, though I’ve got a long way to go before I catch up with the software, to enable decent music-making.


Sunny day – Ollie better

So, most importantly, Ollie is much better. On Saturday morning he woke up without crying, and we’ve had an NSAID-free weekend. He’s still coughy and snotty, but we’re down to about 3 nose-wipes per hour, which is almost standard 23-month-old speed.

We made the best of the sunshine today at Woking park:




So Thomas has been writing a bit more, but all at playgroup – I don’t think he gets the opportunity at home much!

I don’t know if you can make it out, but it says “daddyollie” and “mum” along the bottom. He also wrote “Pat” for one of his teachers, so I think he’s definitely making inroads. I’ve had lots of good advice about the left-handedness, so thank you, though, like I say, I’m not usually around when Thomas decides to write! His reading is coming along quite fast at the moment too, due to, I think, his christmas present, a Leapster which came with a free Phonics game, which he is really good at!

The weather is getting better, so Thomas and I even managed an outdoor stop at a cafe:
You can see I’m really tired in this photo, because…

Ollie has been really poorly, with what we suspected as a chest infection turning out to be, probably, just two viruses, one after the other. He’s been given two different antibiotics which don’t seem to be doing much, and the GP we saw today confirmed a “virusy rash” on his belly. He’s been really suffering though – crying in pain between doses of calpol and ibuprufen, both day and night, shouting “sore, sore!” and more heart-wrenchingly, “mummy, MUMMEEEE, MUMMEEEEE!” He still seemed to want to go to toddler group though, and wasn’t clingy at all – just did his own thing as usual. We also suspected a urine infection as he seemed to be whimpering at nappy changes and pointing to his nappy and saying “hurt hurting”. The GP said the antibiotics he’s on now should take care of that too, but said we could drop in a urine sample just to check… HAH! I pumped him full of water and juice and waited for 20 minutes in the bathroom, running taps and flushing the loo – but he wasn’t forthcoming! Instead we fought over the collection jug [screaming tantrum] then the terry nappy for any spillage [screaming tantrum] so I gave up for now.

It’s very exhausting, but he perked up enough at dinner to throw us this titbit:
[SWF]wp-content/photos/2009/03/twinkle.swf, 352, 288[/SWF]


The left-handed problem…

So a trick I should put into better use more often, is that if I put my phone on silent, then it doesn’t beep when I start video capture, which triggers extreme shyness, silliness, or both in the boys. I managed it this afternoon to capture Thomas’ frustration that his hand smudges anything he writes. This is particularly a problem with his “wipe-clean” writing book, as it doesn’t just smudge, it does, true-to-it’s-word, wipe clean. Any advice for how to train left-handers not to do this would be gratefully accepted. I remember at school watching the left-handers going through all sorts of contortions to not smudge the fountain pen, so I wonder if teachers are “trained” in “dealing” with this problem.

[SWF]wp-content/photos/2009/03/smudging.swf, 352, 288[/SWF]


Making cakes and driveways

So, to welcome David home from his stressful trip abroad, I make a cake. When I got it out of the oven, I realised I didn’t have any jam to fill it with, and also, I don’t have any utensils or icing pens to make it “say” anything. I had to improvise. It was painstaking work:
I took that photo in case it all went wrong from there…

The results weren’t perfect, but the general message was conveyed:
I know the “daddy” is a bit cheesy, but “David” seemed a bit formal. The cake tasted nice anyway.

Also, our driveway is finally coming together:

And the boys loved the big trucks:

This morning, Ollie fell over, which he does quite often, not because he’s unsteady on his feet, but because he insists on running FASTER than his little legs can manage. Anyway today it was so fast his head actually did hit the ground, so he does look a bit funny…



Today Ollie went to nursery for the first time, and both of them started a new nursery. I had been a little worried about how Ollie would take to it. He walked straight in there and started playing with the cars as if he owned the place.

I tried to take him into the sleep room to put him down for a nap, but he was having none of it! He screamed and screamed until we all agreed that, seeing as it was his first day, we could leave it for today. When he’d got over the trauma he was absolutely fine.

Thomas started playing with a toy camcorder and said “this is a video and is also available with batteries”. They remarked that he is “very clever for his age”.

When I said goodbye, Ollie said “bye” and waved vaguely, barely looking up from his puzzle. Apparently after about half an hour, he look around and said, “mum? MUM? MUMMY!?” and looked like he was about to cry, but the nursery assistant said I’d popped to the loo and would be back in a minute, and he forgot all about me! When I went to pick them up, Ollie wasn’t upset, but he was pleased to see me. He’d only been in trouble once, for pushing his brother, but they didn’t put him in “time-out” as it was his first day.

Thomas is a real pedant. I asked if he had beans on toast for tea at nursery, and he replied, “no, we had beans with toast, they don’t do beans on toast”.

David asked Thomas how he had found his first day, and Thomas said, “well, it wasn’t too great as we have to tidy up ALL THE TIME!” I think, however, he was a bit bored as he really wanted to go to the upstairs room for pre-schoolers his age, but as he was the only one today, he was with the younger ones. The other pre-schooler that he would normally be with is away this week, but we know it’s a girl, and she talks as much as Thomas – so they should get on just fine!

Speaking of time-out, we have to put Ollie in his cot for his time-out, which isn’t ideal, as of course, it can lead to associating bad feelings with being in the cot, but we can’t put him in the usual spot, as it now has a box of shoes in it, which he loves to play with, and David’s A-bike, which is far too tempting, and he will even play with the mains socket out there. We just don’t have anywhere else safe enough at the moment.

I leave you with some evidence that they do get on ok:

[SWF]wp-content/photos/2009/03/playdoh.swf, 352, 288[/SWF]