Saturday, 31 October 2009

First attempt at pumpkin carving

Sorry, time for some showing off (people with their own fairly pointless websites based on their name can be prone to it). I've been given a few random assignments since becoming a father, and the latest was carving a pumpkin. Being an IT sort and not being familiar with what is cool in pumpkin carving, I hit a certain well known search engine for info.

1 hour in the bathroom with two very incompetent toddler "helpers" later, I was quite impressed with my creation! Okay, so the eyes and nose were as a result of a printed out template but the mouth was all ad-libbed!

Heather suggested the picture might work better with the lights off. Fair point, really.

Naming bath ducks

Oh, to have the imagination of a toddler. We have just bought Harriet and Toby 4 new rubber ducks for the bath, mainly to distract her from her main bathtime occupation of spinning round as fast as she can, which can get dangerous. The ducks caused great excitement, mainly because they change colour when put in hot or cold water (ooooooooohhhh! wow!).

Harriet has since started to name them. They appear to get rebranded quite often, but their initial names were:

- Golden White How
- Bhaji bhaji
- Pointless
- Mars

Toby did not join in this explosion of creativity, but then he only says about 10 words and one of them is "papple" (apple).

Sunday, 25 October 2009

15 months of baby insomnia

Well, last week Toby made it to 15 months. This is an important age as it has been previously voted (by us) as the perfect child age. They are not so old that they either stay out late, smoke, swear or talk all the time about Thomas the Tank Engine (only one of these has been achieved by our oldest, Harriet, so far), but they aren't an immobile baby either. They're walking (or crawling really well - we have a walker finally), saying some words quite badly and generally is peaking on the cuteness scale. The older children (just Harriet in our case - three and a half years of fun) are interested in chasing the newly mobile kid.

But our happy family hides a dark secret. Dark because its about the night - Toby is an insomniac.

In 65 weeks of nightly sleeping opporunties Toby has managed to sleep through on about two occasions, which given we weren't expecting it didn't help us. We have in the meantime tried just about everything, including but certainly not limited to:

  • Co-sleeping (baby in bed)
  • Banning co-sleeping (baby ushered back to cot for excessive crawling)
  • Feeding to sleep (works in the short term)
  • Banning feeding at night (since he started waking for the milk)
  • Controlled crying
  • Constant attention
  • Back rubbing (his, not ours - he likes it but its hard without Mr Tickle hands)
  • Ear plugs (us, not him)
  • Cuddle blankets (him, not us)
  • Dummies
  • Pleading

The main problem appears to be that he is teething more or less constantly. But basically, he appears to have raging insomnia. Maybe he has worries we're not aware of - where his next teddy is coming from perhaps.

Of course, every cloud has a silver lining and in the case of the parent with a insomniac baby its complaining. Its great to list last night's waking times to non-parents and watch their look of horror at what they might have to endure in the future. It can even get competitive with other insomniac baby parents, seeing who had the worst night last night ("Awake from 4am? That's nothing, I went to sleep at 3am and was up getting breakfast 10 minutes later!").

If we've said it once we must have said it a thousand times since last July. Its a good job he is cute...