Monday, 24 November 2014

Baby wearing and festivities!

We have been having adventures in baby wearing since my last post, I got my first tula a couple of weeks ago and we haven't used the pram since! I love it! It's supportive, it's comfy for me and for Harper and it's good for her legs. You can front and back carry with it (though we've only been so brave as to try front carrying so far) and it's lovely! Harper never sleeps in her pram she gets cross and whines about being tired, but never sleeps, yet we have had none of that using the tula at all! I am so impressed by it, I love it!
I haven't posted in a little while because my computer is out of commission, so I am currently posting in my phone (which is a pain in the bum). We have got the tree and some lights up now though, and Harper has just turned 8 months! She's growing so fast!
Hopefully my computer will be fixed soon and I can wrote a better post, but for now I can thoroughly recommend the tula baby carrier!

Thursday, 23 October 2014

Finger painting and puppy cuddles

Lots of fun was had with
our edible finger paint
We have been looking on pinterest a lot lately since we got Harper's yumbox (see my previous post, there will be more about that soon!) and we discovered lots of different edible finger paints recipes, so we figured we'd give it a little go!
A masterpiece,
I am sure you will agree
We have a bunch of baby rice and stuff that we never used and probably never will so I decided to pop a bit of food colouring in that and see how we diddled - it was a great success! She really enjoyed herself - more "paint" on her than the paper, but a good time was had by all nonetheless. She really enjoyed squishing the paint in her hands and er... throwing it across the room too. She painted her first picture and once it's dry (providing it keeps) it'll go on the fridge until she's 20 probably, if it doesn't keep I have a photo of it that I will print out and keep on the fridge instead, with her name and age on it. I really enjoyed doing this with her, of course she sits on her own now but I sat just behind her and watched her have fun and it was nice for me to watch (despite the colourful baby rice that is encrusted on my jeans now).
After all her painting she was quite tired, so we put her in her bouncy chair (that she's pretty much outgrown, but still loves) for a nap, and the dog got in and joined her, making probably the cutest thing that's ever happened ever happen in our house - shortly before I fished him out because he's not allowed in there, which woke her up and I got this beautiful picture. That's one for the album!

Tuesday, 14 October 2014

Yumbox excitement

Harper's yumbox arrived today! I am so excited about using it, we're going on a long trip on Saturday and we will definitely be packing it up for the journey. It's in framboise pink, and it's awesome, we're going to have a go tomorrow at putting purees and finger food in it, as she is having a mix of puree and baby led weaning foods, so she gets all the benefit of learning ot feed herself and I know how much she's eaten. I've been inspired by a few people on my instagram feed, and the yumbox tag on instagram too, and finally decided that I would get one of my own and let myself be a bit creative with her lunches.
Given the non-leaky nature of the yumbox, we can easily transport both puree, yoghurts along with solid food like rice cakes and sandwiches/toast soldiers (or that's the idea anyway!)
I'm now on the hunt for cookie cutters and stamps to make little themed lunches for when she's older and learning shapes, I can't wait to get stuck into this, it's letting me have a little creative flair with how I feed the little one and I'm having a bit of a nerd-out about it.
I have a pinterest board for yumbox ideas and you can find it here - I am way too excited about a plastic box! I'll be posting more as I do some, and will be reviewing the whole non-leaky thing too, can't wait to test it!

Thursday, 18 September 2014

6 months! + Family member update!

Harper is 6 months! (tomorrow, anyway - but tomorrow's a busy day so we won't be able to do proper pictures!) I was just looking through the pictures from when she was just born and it's amazing how much she's changed in only 6 months. Then I think... 6 months has gone so, so quick! I can't believe where the time's gone, we're already halfway through her first year and that's weird to think about!
At 6 months (near enough) Harper can sit unaided for about 30 seconds, she babbles and chats, she likes to death grip everything, she is trying to pincer grip certain things now (like labels), and she goes 'mmmmmm' when you put a spoon in her mouth! She loves bolognese and she enjoys salmon too, she loves it when people talk to her and smiles at anyone who remotely pays her attention. She likes car journeys and her favourite toy at the moment is Simba, that we got from a local charity shop for £1! She sleeps well, despite her teething (we can see one of her bottom teeth trying to pop through) and she's generally a happy little thing until I try to eat anything, then whatever she is doing she'll stop and start crying instead! Harper is now on 3 meals a day, with bottles in between, some days she will have 4 7oz bottles and others she will have 3. She won't drink water, she will only drink fruit juice (heavily diluted as it may be) and she has a real little personality, she's a cheeky little moo and we love it! She's really growing into an amazing little person who does new things every day - I am constantly amazed by her!

We also have a new family member! An 8 week old Boston Terrier called Rigby - he's gorgeous, a bit crap at the whole not peeing and pooping on the floor thing, but gorgeous nonetheless! He loves Harper and she loves him (she shows us by smiling at him and then trying to grab his face, poor dog!) Wherever Harper is, he is, he will sit under her high chair at dinner times and follow me or Elliott if we have her. He's a lovely little addition to our family, and I can't wait til we can take him out with Harper for walks, it'll get us out and about and Harper will get fresh air! Win win - until it starts raining!

Friday, 5 September 2014

My Photo of the week!

Set up my studio for the first time!
So this week I set up my home photo studio for the first time! I got a few backdrops so thought I'd test the pretty pink one with polkadots first for H... Gender stereotypes? Oh dear.
Well, I think they turned out really well, and this was my most favourite of the 10401239847192384 I took. She got a little fed up towards the end, but was a smiley happy girly for the most part so I was taking major advantage of the good mood she was in, (that she seems to have skipped this week!)
So here it is, my favourite photo of her from this week!

'...What can YOUR baby do?'

The question that's never asked, but always heard. In the back of our heads, the dark little space that echos loudest when it speaks - you hear a fellow mother, perfectly innocently (probably... Maybe) say 'oh, well my darling cherubic son is sitting unsupported and juggling his baby bottles and counting backwards from 10 in German! He's only 3 weeks old, don't they just grow up so fast?!' while you sit there thinking, oh my GOD, why can he do all that, while my 6 month old is showing absolutely no interest in sitting supported or not? Hell, she's not even babbling! And you're thinking that because you heard 'so what's your baby doing?' or 'is your baby as clever as mine?' when the question was never asked, nor even really implied (probably, we know what some mothers can be like am I right?)

I do the same thing, I think 'why can't my baby do that when (X) can?' and you know what? It's bollocks. Absolute bollocks. People are all different, people all do things and develop differently and babies are people too! So it makes sense that they don't wake up at 6 months to the day and sit upright, crawl and say 'Mother! I am ready for solid food now!' because that's not how life works, not for anyone, not even for tiny wee people who still need their parents to do everything for them. 
Perhaps instead of thinking 'why can't my baby do that?' think about all the things your baby has learned as they've grown, be that a little or a lot - what has your baby done that has made you proud? Because I know I'm getting prouder every day of seeing my little girl get really fascinated by a label on her clothes, or that she goes 'mmmmmmmm' when I put the spoon in her mouth - it's the little changes that are happening every day that you need to focus on. Milestones don't matter, because the more you wish for a milestone to happen, just to be like the baby who ice skate at 8 months, the less time you have to notice how your little is growing and changing in small ways every day and before you know it, your baby is a walking, talking tiny hurricane and you forgot to treasure the little things that are happened along the way.

Thursday, 14 August 2014

Be aware of scars you can't see

As a rule, 'celebrity' deaths don't usually get to me. They're sad and all, especially so when they're young and they leave families and children behind, but because I don't know them, usually it's a fleeting feeling of sadness for their family and I don't think much on it afterwards, I'll usually get on with my day. Robin Williams however has affected me differently, it's sad, it's a horrible shock and it's scary. It's scary because his story is one that is so easy to relate to, the sad clown. What's even scarier is that so many of us can relate to him, so many of us have this outer self that we show everyone else and only those closest to us know differently - so many of us suffer with depression or any other mental illness and it's something that the media overlooks, it's something that people still say 'well, why don't you just try cheering up?' or 'try to be more positive!' or even 'what have you got to be depressed about?' Clearly, those people are blessed  to not understand how depression, or any other mental illness actually works - or they're overcompensating who knows? 
Depression, to me at least, is like getting in a car and having it not start. No matter how many times you turn the key, or how quickly, or even how determined you are to get the car to fire up that engine - it won't. The more you try to get the car to start, the more angry, or frustrated or hopeless you feel about it not starting; you can't start the car, you are a useless person. You can't start the car, what's the point? The car needs a mechanic, but instead of going to see a mechanic you're blocked by people saying 'well, that car's a Ferrari, it should start!' and 'Ah you don't need a mechanic, you just need to go fill the engine with petrol and it'll be fine' when it won't be fine, because somehow the engine fell out. And with people telling you how silly you are for seeking someone else's help, and that you can do it by yourself, you try to fix it yourself, and the more time you spend trying to fix it, the more time you're spending not fixing the problem at all, because this one you just can't fix by yourself.
I saw a lot of comments yesterday from some very lucky people who haven't apparently been affected by depression, and therefore feel like they can pass judgement on someone's darkest final act. I saw comments saying that suicide is the most selfish act, and it made me wonder how many people believe that suicide is an easy way out. I honestly can't imagine a harder thing, genuinely believing that your death would somehow be better for your friends and family, that the world would be better off without you in it. I know that I have felt that way in the past and it's horrible, there is not a worse feeling I can think of - to look into oblivion and to welcome it despite knowing everything you have to life for and not caring? It's really, really hard and I know I wouldn't wish that on anybody. As sad and as shocking as Robin Williams' death is, let it be one that raises awareness of a horrible illness rather than judging his final actions. Mental illness kills, you just don't see it on the outside.
If you know someone, or are someone who is depression, or someone who is showing signs of depression, don't let people tell you not to get the help if you think you need it. If you need someone to listen to you there are so many great sources out there now, including the Samaritans who have helped me lots of times when I first started struggling with my mental illness. Please don't hesitate to do something before it gets worse.