Archive for February, 2007


Wednesday, February 28th, 2007

The wind is whistling (kept M awake last night) and hurling the rain against our windows, and radio 4 reckons we are for it, with snow forecast for North Wales (which we can see even if we don’t live there) and severe wind and rain for the north-west. But my daffs think it is spring and next-door’s cherry tree is pink.

Tamsin @ costa

Monday, February 26th, 2007

Mummy’s girl – she likes a nice coffee shop.

I’m enjoying being a celebrity again: taking a toddler out and about doesn’t elicit quite the same smiles and coos of welcome. I had assumed, with Maggie, that we got so much attention because she was a western baby so fairly unusual – I have now reached the conclusion that it is merely because I have such very cute babies: we were quite the centre of OAP attention in Chester today. (What do you mean they coo over all babies? Don’t be silly.)

Should I stay or should I go?

Thursday, February 22nd, 2007

Back to work, that is. Easter was my mental deadline for returning, only I’ve just realised it is Lent (even though we haven’t had pancakes yet) so that day is looming fast. Tamsin still seems tiny and I just can’t imagine how I will find the time – yet having spent much of today embroiled in a, ahem, “debate”* online (must get out more), perhaps I should. I was wondering today whether I could have somebody do my ironing if I did go back: that would make the hassle worthwhile. The only reason to go back – apart from the obvious financial rewards which, believe me, are not nearly large enough to make working-till-midnight appealing – is that I’m concerned if I take too long out and lose my contacts then it will be a bridge burned.

I think what I am going to do is approach one or two of my sources (Cath, this means you!) and take on a little to see how it goes. I could do maybe one article or slide set every couple of weeks? That doesn’t sound so bad (until you realise this is a return to evening and weekend working and I frankly do not have a problem filling my time). Maggie is probably going to do 3 half-days at preschool from September – one more than at present – which in principle frees up another few hours. Except it might be nice to spend that time with the poor neglected secondborn. Perhaps she would like to swim or sing or just have some attention.

*Early weaning. Sigh. This is robustly debated every few weeks on ivillage and I generally steer well clear – as I do most rows – only this time it was on my board and the woman provoking it is not a regular boardie but a…not quite a troll as she belongs on the neighbouring board…let’s say troublemaker. She has posted recently on at least 4 boards extolling the virtues of early weaning and telling everybody the government guidelines are nonsense. I think she might be sponsored by Cow & Gate! Of course she’s entitled to her opinion, but a) she has one child aged 9 weeks, b) people lurk these boards and deserve to get proper information and c) she is just plain offensive. So in I waded.

I’m going to Have It All

Saturday, February 17th, 2007

…with my brilliant new business venture: Chester Sherpas(TM). Watch out for me on Dragons’ Den soon! It Came to me in a flash yesterday as I pushed Maggie in a buggy (laden with off-balance shopping bags as well as a heavy child) with one hand while carrying an umbrella with the other; Tamsin was strapped to my front and the bag of “essentials” on my back. Available to roll out to other cities soon although Chester is particularly well-suited, blessed as it is with cobbles, sharp corners, the completely buggy-proof rows and large gangs of gawping tourists and loitering students who leap out in front of you without a second’s notice, necessitating wild and sudden changes in direction. I nearly lost control several times. (I mean literal control of buggy and/or umbrella not figurative control of my temper, although that did happen when I reached the new dentist to be confronted by a flight of stairs adorned with the magical sign “prams and buggies must be carried up these steps by two adults” (their emphasis). Was there another adult employed by them to stand by and assist? There was not.)

I’m a jaffa cake

Tuesday, February 13th, 2007

Just a short quick post, sort of whispered (because Pewari, who is paranoid because she’s had lawyers’ letters, is convinced Gillian McKeith is actually psychic and will find me out and sue me for being mean) but I must direct you to this fabulous article*. I confess I don’t watch her programme; I saw it once or twice and couldn’t bear the bullying, nor the fact that she claimed to analyse people’s poo and the corners of their mouths. The article misses out the most important point (presumably because it would be libellous; as, presumably, is this. But I am a small and insignificant blog rather than a national newspaper so prepared to risk it): that she gives no indication of taking any pleasure whatsoever from life. Frankly I’d rather eat the odd ice cream or plate of chips and be happy than survive on aduki beans and goji beans (huh?) and be cross all the time**.

*I like the quote …otherwise it wouldn’t be called “science”, it would be called “assuming”, or “guessing”, or “making it up as you go along”, which sounds horribly like my PhD, and those of many of my friends – but that is another story altogether.

**Of course I am cross all the time. But that is the lot of a mother-of-two and not a result of over-indulgence in blue-green algae. That’s not food, it’s slime!

Hello world!

Monday, February 12th, 2007

Tamsin’s first facing-out ride in her sling: she doesn’t look anything like her sister, does she (link is playing up a bit: scroll down to June 22nd)? Old ladies in Britain have fingers that are just as pointy as their Japanese counterparts, yet all seem to think she is a boy. Not sure why, given that she was wearing a pink T-shirt.

Poor baby was not well yesterday: the perils of having an older sibling. High temperature and bunged-up nose, ergo couldn’t really breathe, ergo couldn’t really feed, ergo didn’t sleep. (Though I don’t feel I can really complain as it was the first bad night we’ve had with her in 3 months.)

Who knew?

Friday, February 9th, 2007

Jo’s tagged me to share 5 things you don’t know about me – though I have no idea when she did so as her posts, bizarrely, are timed but not dated (yes, I am aware that there are other people out there who have tagged me and been completely ignored: I’m thinking. Sort of). It kind of depends who “you” is (are?) as most people reading this, I believe, know me in real life (or at least via MSN or email) as well. Hey ho:

1. I am about to become an aunty for the second time (and I know if it’s a niece or a nephew even though my sister will swear blind she didn’t find out and I just shrug and say “if she does, she’s not telling”. Hee hee!). I love being an aunty.

2. I was a girl guide for far longer than is seemly or socially acceptable, ie not just brownies but guides and rangers and even a brief stint as a leader. I can tie knots.

3. My hair is falling out. It didn’t do that after M was born (or perhaps I didn’t notice because in those days it was short and – halcyon days – had some semblance of a style).

4. I have a hankering to sail and absolutely no idea why I didn’t learn when I was at university. Love boats. Married a man who is sick on a pier.

5. Tamsin’s birth story, as promised.

Edited to add: Just realised I didn’t tag anyone else to do it. So I choose Mia, Katy, Ally (because surely she has shared it all), Karen (who I know will hate it and refuse to play) and the other Lisa.

And then there were four

Friday, February 9th, 2007

It’s about time I wrote Tamsin’s birth story.
I’d had Braxton-Hicks contractions every night for a week, varying from strong and regular but not painful to painful but irregular. So Sunday night, getting what felt like indigestion pains every half hour or so, I didn’t think anything of it – I was only 41 weeks pregnant and fully expected to go at least another week. Went up to bed as normal and fell asleep as the pains stopped. Only to wake up at 4.30 with what I thought was trapped wind (it really took me ages to realise I was in labour this time. “You’ll know” everybody says – I must be very dense indeed.) (more…)

Bottomless pit

Wednesday, February 7th, 2007

Tamsin is having a growth spurt (right on target for getting into size 3-6 month outfits) so today has gone feed-poo-feed-poo-feed-poo-sleep. And repeat. Meaning my day has gone feed-change-feed-change-feed-run about screeching and tearing out hair trying to wash nappies and provide food and entertainment for Maggie. Very hard going when single mumming again (he’s back tonight, hooray). I haven’t even managed to get out in the lovely sunshine despite good intentions and hopes. Although naturally I have been online (I can type one-handed while feeding a baby. No worries.)

Actually we did just knock up some blueberry and coconut muffins earlier. Ahem (buffs nails, looks modest yet smug). Pretty tasty and super-easy. Crumbs, bowls and spatulas (etc) everywhere still with little prospect of getting them tidied away in the near future, and tomorrow is Super Stress Morning (TM) as we try to get to swimming on time. Bring on the blizzards I say.  

12 weeks

Monday, February 5th, 2007

And no longer a newborn blob but a fully fledged baby who can swipe at toys and everything*. She even watched the rugby with Daddy at the weekend while Maggie and I went to the allotment, which was absolutely glorious: cold, crisp blue skies, birds singing, completely peaceful. Until M realised that if she shouted “hooray” really really loudly she got a great echo from the walls. Sorry, all the rest of the plot-holders who were having a silent Sunday afternoon.

*Everything = eat, sleep, stare about and fill nappies. Not much else.