Wednesday, 11 December 2013

Bringing up baby: regrets, and other news

Sadness from mummy. I have regrets.

I am regretful I haven't played with him as much as I used to. I am regretful I worked so much and hard in October.

And so, I don't know my little boy so well anymore. I am regretful for that, too.

I love him so much, and I don't know how to show it. I am lacking time to look after the house, care for my Bundle, and care for Tilly. Toys and TV are a poor substitute for quantity time.

Last week was good. As a family, we were at the playground. This week, we had lunch together and then went to the playground. I just need to be more mindful and make AND take opportunities to be with my son.

My body is still in too poor a shape for me to be as physical as I need to be with an active pre-schooler.

Tonight was sad for me. Daddy was looking after the house. Tilly brushed his teeth, mucked around by himself. Then took himself to bed quietly. He didn't want me, he wanted Daddy.

My sadness.

Last year, or earlier this year, I was His Best Friend. I got the Polar Bear (second-best toy after Koala), the one to play "Bye Bye" with, to go tree climbing with.

I miss how we used to push Tiily-in-a-box around the floor before bedtime. I miss reading to him. I miss playing with him.

In other news, Bundle is absolutely gorgeous, with the most charming smiles.

Monday, 25 November 2013

Bringing up baby: "Dum(p) Truck"

In late September, I was fortunate enough to be read to by Tilly.

It was a lovely morning, and we had a very nice few minutes at daycare. It is one of my fondest memories.

Tilly picked a book from the communal basket, and indicated that I ought to sit down beside him on the couch. We settled in, and he began reading to me.

"Dum truck," he pointed to the picture of the yellow dump truck on the cover of the book.

He opened the book.

"Dum truck," he pointed to the picture of the hero of the story. It was a toy dump truck, being played with by a boy in a sandpit.

He turned the page.

"Dum truck," he pointed. It was a picture of a real working dump truck on a construction site.

"Dum truck." Turn page. It was a picture of a real working dump truck, with dirt being put into it.

"Dum truck." Turn page. It was a picture of a real working dump truck, covered by tarpauline, carrying dirt across the city.

"Dum truck." Turn page. "Dum truck." Turn page. "Dum truck." Turn page. "Dum truck." Turn page. These were pictures of a real working dump truck, working on various jobs.

"The end." Close book.

I am charmed. My ten minutes with him at day care had alarmed a few minutes ago. And I wanted to hear him read the book some more.

"Again?" I asked him. "Shall we read the book again?"

He beamed at me, and I smiled delightedly at him.

"Dum truck," he pointed to the picture of the yellow dump truck on the cover of the book.

He opened the book.

"Dum truck," he pointed to the picture of the hero do the story.

He turned the page.

"Dum truck," he pointed.

"Dum truck." Turn page.

"Dum truck." Turn page.

"Dum truck." Turn page. "Dum truck." Turn page. "Dum truck." Turn page. "Dum truck." Turn page.

"The end." Close book.

I am wistful, and saddened. I had to go to work. No more Dum Truck for me today.

Thursday, 26 September 2013

Bringing up baby: 21-22 September 2013

Update so far:

Tilly is vocalising and storytelling a lot more. He is beginning to tell us about the interesting things he's done ("I mow the lawn!") and the interesting things he's observed ("babble babble babble red balloon!" "babble babble babble knock on the door driving to Ah Mah's house").

One of the more amusing things I hear him say, apart from his standard "What doing?", is "How about me??" said in a very plaintive tone.

It's been a mostly good weekend.

During Saturday, Tilly inspired us to clean the spider webs from the inside of the house, and to vacuum our house. It was very nice to end the day in a clean house.

Atilla was very good on Saturday, having an early nap, and we managed an early dinner, and an early bedtime for him. I cleaned the kitchen and gave husband an early night - which he took (as opposed to staying up late to game).

There was a magnificent thunder and lightning storm in the dark hours of the morning.

Sunday was a very emotional day. Lots of emotional swings from young Tilly. And subsequently, emotional swings for Mummy and Daddy. We all ended the day at about 10pm or 12pm after minimal housework, a real contrast to Saturday.

The sticking point, I think, was Tilly's constipation. The end result horrified me.
All weekend Tilly was to-ing and fro-ing regarding the toilet. He didn't want to sit on unless he was ready to poop. (I think) He could feel the poop and his bowels working away, but it wouldn't come out. He was very long suffering and sat patiently but nada. So he hops off again and carries on his day. Parental assistance is required for all these activities.
It culminated on Sunday night during a late dinner (prep and cooking delayed due to aforementioned parental assistance).
For an extended period of time - at least an hour - this family experienced a hullabaloo of Tilly's pained tears, his sweaty face, his despairing wails, his desperate pleadings to have Mummy get his stuck poop out (I couldn't see anything to pull :-(), his shame at peeing on himself while he was in training pants, Daddy's loud frustration that Tilly didn't want to concentrate to poop.
In response to Daddy, I asked him to remove himself from the bathroom and take care of himself, and I would take care of Tilly.
Tilly and I calmed down, and he decided to give the toilet another go. Not much happened, so we cleaned up (yet again) and returned to our activity (whatever it was).
Next episode, calmed Daddy helped Tilly on the toilet. This was the first productive session. But by the gods, the outcome!
I'm containing my devastation and despair. My poor kid is developing dreadful constipation these past two weeks. Today was one of the worst I've seen. It caused enough pain and blood to turn the toilet water pink. The kid was quite cheerful after passing such a difficult stool, pointing to the water, "Pink!" he says proudly.
 On his subsequent session on the loo, he wanted to turn the water pink again. Happily for me, it was just a normal soft stool. Disappointment for him.
 We are trying prune juice on him, as he's unreliable on chomping prunes.
 I feel like I've been a Bad Mother: I'm so despairing that I've not done more to prevent his pain (even if he is proud of making pink poop). Usually it can be pulled out, or bits knocked off to make the initial pass smaller, or massaged out. But not today. 

The next emotional swing was at Toothbrushing time. (Daddy later explained that Tilly wanted to do it twice, complete with toothpaste. Daddy wouldn't allow it.( Frustration on both sides and tempers flared. After completing minimal housework, I ventured upstairs with the required paraphernalia - soft toys, water bottle, a bowl to catch potential upchuck. 

The bowl was a potential fuel to the upchuck - Tilly has begun to associate the bowl with the requirement to upchucking, even though we've done our best to explain that the upchuck requires the bowl. 

Anyhoo I did my bit to de-escalate the situation: calmed and soothed Tilly down in my own way, and calmed Daddy down in my own way. This took some time and effort. Gotta be 10.30pm by now. 

We all fell asleep on the floor of Tilly's room. 

I woke up to start Monday at 5.40am, and the other two had a late start at around 7am. Lucky sods. At least it gave me time to do some more housework, and to prepare roast chicken dinner. Hope the chicken turns out well. 

Wednesday, 25 September 2013

Bringing up baby: Highlights 15-22 Sept

Tilly mows the lawn (c) ^_^ 2013
Last week Atilla helped to mow the lawn. He was so proud of himself. 

Tilly vacuums the house (c) ^_^ 2013
This week Atilla helped to vacuum the house. It was a heartwarming sight. 

Tuesday, 24 September 2013

Bringing up baby: Amazing Siberian Slippers for kids

These are the variations of the slipper pattern "Amazing Siberian Slippers" I've knitted for Tilly in the depths of winter 2013, as he's outgrown moccasins.

outside view (c) ^_^ 2013

insole view (c) ^_^ 2013
These ones were the second set I made, in complete certainty I had got the sizing correct this second time around. He wore them a few times, but they were too big and kept slipping off his feet! to wails and cries.

green slippers (c) ^_^ 2013
These are the ones I made, adapting/reducing the pattern to Tilly's feet measurements. He's really keen on them. They are just right, and stay on. He needs to make an effort before putting them on, and taking them off.

Monday, 23 September 2013

Bringing up baby: Tilly's world view a while ago

2013 sometime
This is what Tilly sees when he has to climb up the stairs to the second level of our house. Intimidating, isn't it? No wonder he always wants to be bau-bau'd (carried).

Thursday, 12 September 2013

MS Access: Really Basics - Use a form to update multiple tables

So at work I am learning something new about Microsoft Access Database. I want to use 1 form to update at least 2 tables, and there are 3 tables involved all together.

For the past 2 and a half hours I've learned that my form needed to be have Recordset Type = Dynaset (Inconsistent Updates). For a majority of this time I've been searching and puzzling about where I can find this property so that I can change it.

Some links I've tried (not including my google searches):

I've even tried video tutorials, but I didn't have any luck.

No where did they tell me the most simplest thing: 
  1. In the form, go to Design view.
  2. Right-click, to select Property Sheet.
  3. The Selection Type should equal Form; this can be chosen in the drop-down menu below the words 'Selection Type'.
  4. In the Data tab, in the second row, is the form property "Recordset Type". And in the column next to it, I can choose "Dynaset (Inconsistent Updates)". 
  5. Yay!
Yes, I'm a total n00b.

Monday, 19 August 2013

Bringing up baby: update 18 August 2013

Life has been so full.

Mainly due to lots of pressure at work.

Atilla is thriving and maturing and still a wonder to be with. He is so playful. There's been so many memories I want to capture. In no particular order:

  • His running is still a bit like a speeded up black&white movie; jerky, abrupt, and fast. It gets him where he wants to be.
  • His hidden security retreat - under the large wooden dining/filing table. He goes there to hide from exiting the house, or when he feels wronged. 
  • His sensitivity, when he feels wronged. His mouth has a sad trembling mou, his eyes express his hurt feelings, and he looks defenceless. He bravely makes the best of a bad situation, and distracts his hurt feelings by doing something else.
  • His sleeping posture. He looks so relaxed, with his arms out flung, or hands under his head. Closed eyes, lips slightly parted. Breathing so peacefully.
  • His singing. He has his version of Old Macdonald. The most noticeable refrain is "eieio" chanted without discrimination to the tune. There's another song I don't recognise - it involves hand gestures symbolising fishes swimming, hands going to the mouth in an 'Oh no!', and something else in the sequence which I can't recall just now. He also sings Twinkle Twinkle Little Star.
  • He attempts to vacuum the carpet. He knows it requires a handheld device which makes a lot of noise. He knows the device needs to be switched on, and off. He knows the device belongs to Adults. He attempts to vacuum the carpet with my hair-dryer. Cute.
  • His babbling. He is talking to us, but we can't really make out the words. We can usually understand his intent though.
  • His interest in dinosaurs. He asks Daddy to draw dinosaurs. Daddy is very good at drawing recognisable dinosaurs.
  • Teaching him responsibility. I asked him to clear and tidy the table so we could have breakfast. He counter-proposed that I ought to clear the table. I said I was getting breakfast, and he needed to clear the table so we could eat. He descended his steps and cleared and tidied the table. What a brilliant boy!
  • His remembering our times at the swimming pool, including picnic lunch. We kept talking about going swimming, and his contribution was to haul the picnic mat to be packed into the car.
  • His enjoyment of swinging on the playground swings. He can sit there contentedly, being pushed, for over an hour.
  • His enjoyment of food. When he eats so happily there is no spillage to clean up.
  • He plays with Polar Bear and Koala Bear and Giraffe. He looks after his Caillou doll, and gives it baths, and sits him tenderly on the blue-and-pink soft toy horse with reins.
  • Holding hands with him as we walk along - in home, to the playground, in car parks, exploring.
  • His every attempt to become independent. His latest is to wipe his own butt after pooping on the loo. (I get very fussy in case he misses, and the shit gets on his hands.)
  • His cuddles and hugs. 

Friday, 2 August 2013

Bringing up baby: what Atilla thinks as 'Mummy'

Around two years ago I received my ipad. Around two years ago I downloaded the Baby Signs app. Tilly took to it quite happily, and always focused on this flash card:
Or at least, this little character. It was his favourite. I wondered whether it was because she also had dark hair and brown eyes.

This year, 13 July 2013, about 19 months after we first met her, Atilla smiled at me and pointed to her: "Mummy". 

It seems he thought she was me as a little girl!

Monday, 29 July 2013

Bringing up baby: Hamilton Gardens, with child

We had a brilliant day, and mostly everybody stayed happy.

  • Getting out of the house on time,
  • Tilly staying awake the whole 1.5hr it took us to arrive there, A very nice weather day, Seeing lots of interesting things with Tilly, Tilly's interest.

Tilly's highlights:
  • "Dragon Turtle".

I dressed Tilly in his going-out gear, complete with his much-despised vest (it covers up the dog picture on his t-shirt), which he acquiesced to nicely enough, with the promise he could take it off once we arrived at Hamilton Gardens.

Mummy and Daddy took longer to get ready, what with me wanting to pack a snack-box for three people, just in case we got hungry before the designated lunch break.

We eventually got out, and I'd brought what I though was necessary, including our sun hats.

Onwards on the motorway we travelled. I thought I had to keep Tilly I interested in the journey,so we pointed out the highlights when we thought he could see them from his car seat.

"Look, Tilly! Cows!"
"Black cows!"
"Brown cows."
Not bothering to mention any more cows, as even he had stopped being excited.

We did see some swans in a field, and a couple of horses, however we whizzed by so fast Tilly probably couldn't see them unless he'd been looking out for them.

"Waikato River!"

The kauri rickets I the car park has grown taller, which is a good thing.

Koala bear (new addition to Tilly's menagerie since Aunty returned from Australia) was his companion of choice, despite our objections. It was supposed to be a nice family day, so we acquiesced to his decision despite my misgivings.

Dad and son strolled around Turtle Lake, I visited the latrine. It has gone upmarket since we last visited. For the better. There's even a Dyson hand-dryer, Mark II. [Aside: a couple of drawbacks - too noisy, scaring babies and small kids; bigger small kids can't reach in to dry their hands.]

I caught up with the family, and Tilly informed me they had been watching "fantail". We continued the stroll, and saw another fantail and some other bird.

Tilly wanted to hunt for the flighty fantail. We dissuaded him, saying the fantail would find us after it had gotten it's lunch.

I went to the Information Centre and got yet another map. Realising that we no longer had the luxury of faffing about with map reading, I asked the nice lady to circle our places of interest:
  • Italian garden,
  • Indian garden
  • Sustainable garden,
  • Playground.

Buoyed, we set forth.

Tilly was suitably impressed by the wolf and two babies statue (Romulus and Remus, and adoptive mum).

He was less sanguine about departing widely from his stroller. A real hullabaloo.

We departed the Italian garden, parental units chastened and wiser.
Indian garden was a big hit, and Tilly got out to play with the small fountain burbling by the river.

He loosened up enough to play with mum and dad.

He even played with pushing his stroller.
English garden was apparently interesting to Tilly, although there wasn't much as the lawn was herbicided and fungicided.
Japanese garden was all right. Tilly liked it enough to want to explore the Shinto rock garden of contemplation.
Chinese garden was good. Twelve large orange goldfishes, dad pushing the stroller uphill up the shallow steps. The Dragon Turtle. Tilly was very impressed. I was too slow to take a photo of his first encounter. Sigh. On the other side of the path, Tilly pointed out "butterfly". As we left the area, mum and dad saw the butterfly.
Back to the entrance/exit area. Tilly toddled off into the English garden again, pursued by Daddy.

I savoured a yoghurt coated rice cake. I was famished, and ready for a spot of lunch.
Onwards we trouped. We saw the Kitchen garden, and the crop garden. I never can recognise oats. It looks like grass.
To the Sustainable Garden.

It was fascinating enough, with it's chicken coop and chickens. I saw a free range mouse.

The garden was cramped and narrow, and when I tried to remove the stroller to a more open area, Tilly became insecure.

Parental unit not wise enough.
We diverted to the Tudor garden, with its dragons, unicorn, and gryphon.
Gotta be lunchtime. Had lunch.

Tilly enjoyed himself quite a lot, climbing over Daddy.

We ended the session with Tilly sitting contentedly in his stroller, watching Turtle Lake, chatting to me. It was so nice.
We found Daddy, and Daddy found the playground. Daddy and Tilly played while I sat in the sunshine and watched their leisure pleasure.
Husband drove us home. What a hero.
On Sunday, preparing to go out, Tilly (after he had distributed the sun hats) said, "Dragon Turtle?"

Friday, 19 July 2013

Bringing up baby: 4 July Painting

04Jul13 paint (c) Atilla 2013
Medium: paper, paint, glitter, sparkle paint.

You don't get the full effect. There is sparkles on the blue-purple paint, and glitter painted over by green paint.

Monday, 8 July 2013

Bringing up baby: 6 July 2013 what a nice day!

It was absolutely amazing. Atilla was nice all day! He was friendly, playful, and listened to his parents!

 It was my turn to parent Tilly in the morning. He had his milk, his nappy change - he scarpered off, so I waited for him in the nappy changing room, and he wandered in after a brief while.

He played ("Tasty!) while I installed the new kettle. He did have a tantrum when I took away his blue playdoh, on the basis he isn't supposed to eat toys at home. This tantrum lasted a long while, enough to boil a max kettle 3 times and to make Daddy his tea. He was ok during this tantrum. Sure, he wailed and gnashed his teeth, and tears rolled down his soft baby cheeks onto the table. He lay down on the floor and sobbed loudly. He quietened down. I sat with him at the quiet stage. I explained that he isn't to eat toys at home. I explained he could eat the playdoh at daycare if he wanted (I think it's ok as that stuff is made to a published recipe than out of a tub). I asked him if he wanted me to stay. "No." I finished making Daddy's tea. I asked him if he wanted to help take Daddy's tea to him. "Yes."

The tea ritual completed, we returned downstairs for breakfast. 
  • Yoghurt, banana on toast, he reminded me about taking my pill. He ate, he sat on my lap, he played around me. He read a couple of pamphlets. We finished breakfast, it was 10am. Time Daddy was up.
  • Daddy had breakfast, reminded me it was WoF time. We persuaded Tiily out of the house within 30mins and without a tantrum (a record!) Tilly was very good at the WoF place. He played very well.
  • Lunchtime at a Japanese place. Tilly ate very nicely. When he'd finished, he wandered outside under Daddy's supervision.
  • He dozed in the car, and finished his nap at home.
  • We went to the playground for sometime. Then to the bookshop. Then back to playground, then home.
  • Tv time, dinner, bath by 7pm. Upstairs by 7.30pm.
  • Toileting for an hour.
  • Bed, Mog the Forgetful Cat, Over the Rainbow song, and sleep by 10pm.

Atilla was a pleasure to be with today.

Sent from handheld

Tuesday, 25 June 2013

Bringing up baby: 22-23 June 2013 Walks in the rain, and Kelly Tarleton's

Remembering the good times.

22 June 2013 - Walks in the rain.

As per routine, I parented Tilly on Saturday morning. This was the weekend of wild woolly weather. This was the weekend of wet, cold, and rain. Most of the weather completed on Thursday and Friday, so I thought that Saturday was a good time to go for a walk.

Saturday morning was a good time to go for a walk, as Daddy was still feeling the effects of being ill, and we needed breakfast brought into the house.

I persuaded Tilly to go for a walk to the local bakery. This persuasion took probably an hour. He was an enthusiastic participant by the time we walked down the front steps. He had on his gumboots, his rain jacket, and held the folded up shopping bag. I had on my boots, and Daddy's jacket, and held a purple umbrella.

We sauntered, forthwith. Tilly looked so cute, so serious, holding the folded shopping bag by its handles.

On the walk, he found one of the pockets on his jacket. He put his hand into his jacket to keep it warm. It was a cold day.

We bought several buns from the bakery.

Tilly toddled outside, and insistently clambered onto a chair, and sat expectantly. I overrode my first concern to bring food to Daddy, and acquiesced to my current concern of not disappointing Tilly. I gave him half a sultana bun. I ate the other half. He munched on his. Occasionally he would say "Shoo bird" at the gathering sparrows. They paid no mind.

The rain had stopped, and the sunshine was warming up the glass table and chair and me and Tilly. It was nice.

When Tilly finished, I persuaded him we needed to share the remaining buns with Daddy. Tilly acquiesced. We sauntered back home. Tilly had to walk all the way without being carried, as my hands were fully occupied with the bag of buns, umbrella, and holding onto Tilly's hand.

We had second breakfast at home.


After our weekly grocery shopping trip, Tilly still wasn't settling for a nap. So, this was a good time to visit the local wetland/pond/ducks.

Preparation felt like it took 30 minutes. Dressing Tilly, dressing parents, getting pushchair, prepping pushchair for wet weather, getting out the frozen stale bread (yay! more freezer space!).

We strolled. I remarked on the changes in the neighbourhood.

At the pond, the birdlife was plentiful gathered on the sodden grass. Ducks, geese, pukekos, sea birds.

We had fun feeding the birds on the grass. The rain came, so I volunteered to hold the umbrella so other people could continue feeding the birds.

We fed the birds in the rain.

Eventually the rain stopped. Eventually we ran out of bread.

We walked home. Tilly napped.

23 June 2013 - Kelly Tarlton's Sea Life Aquarium 

This place has changed since we last visited. The entrance is now in the polar area - more room for queues. There is no more snowcat ride. Shame.

Tilly was very quick. He walked quickly through the Explorers' hut, not wanting to stop for anything. He stopped for the live penguins exhibit. He was fascinated.

We were there for a bit of time. Not as long as when Tilly was watching seals at the zoo. Sufficient to sate his desire for penguins.

He'd had enough, and pulled parental units onwards and upwards.

(Did we pass the 12mo Giant Squid? "Biiig!")

This was then the open cafe area, with rock pools, larger aquarium of fishes, rays, kid's section. He had fun. I was ho hum, and had fun watching Tilly.

He mucked around for a while in the kid's section. He was gentle with the turtle shell. I was proud of him for showing some respect to a dead animal part.

After 15 minutes or so, he pulled parental units onwards. Past the rays, past the shark models. Past the resting rays.

Into. The Tunnel.

Tilly really enjoyed the Tunnel. We went through it twice.

I rested at the eel area.

Tilly and Daddy went through the Tunnel four times. Tilly came back and thought I ought to enjoy the Tunnel too.

We went through a couple more times. I persuaded the family to retire to the cafe area for sustenance. Oh that was a nice break.

We went through the Tunnel a couple more times, then parental units insisted it was the end of Tunnel and it was time to visit another exhibit.

Sea horses, sea dragons, puffer fish, live octopus, etc. Exit via shop area. Exit to carpark.

"Next time, Tilly. We'll come back another time."

highlights of this weekend: walking in the rain, Tilly's enjoyment of Kelly Tarlton's.

Thursday, 6 June 2013

Bringing up baby: vocabulary, and Play

Play vocabulary: "Poo-kah poo-kah poo-kah" "Poo-ba poo-ba poo-ba"

I've probably mentioned before, but I'm saying it again. Tilly has taught me how to Play.

My spare time is usually spent on a Goal, e.g. knitting an item, watching DVD, reading, working on a project, playing computer/Nintendo/app games (not in that order). Something with a defined end-point, "finished".

Playing with Tilly has no defined end-point. It is continuous and morphs. There is no Goal. No-one 'wins'. Everyone has fun.


Wednesday, 5 June 2013

Bringing up baby: Queen's Birthday year 3

It's been a great weekend. Today was marvellous. I spent the day playing with Tilly, more or less. He was nice to us too, mostly. He didn't have any screen-time at all. Wow.

We're experimenting with no daytime sleep for Tilly. Mum and Dad will still take a nap when we need it after lunch, so Tilly has to look after himself. He seems ok with that ad hoc plan. He's got his water bottle, and I put out some snacks for him to find. When we're ready for company again, we call out, "where are you [name]?" (as popularised by Tilly himself).

Tilly is also combining lots of words together. I can only assume he's been doing much more often at daycare, given the verbal reports I've had of how well he speaks when he's there.

We played Stick, we played Hit the Ball with the Stick, we played Drag the Stick, I got to do quite a bit of knitting of Tilly's second half of his third slippers, we listened quietly to music, we did jigsaw, we played Kick the Balloon, we read The Cat in the Hat Comes Back, we read Animalia, Tilly tried pooping, we generally spent a lot of time together.

He gave me a hug when I asked for one. He's so sweet.

He also let me sleep in from 6.30am to 8am. He's fantastic.


I still miss watching him run, as a 1-2yo. His joy in speeding along, propelling himself head first, his arms sticking straight behind him, his eyes squinting and his grinning face. I regret I don't have a photo of that.
Baby Tilly running joyously (c) ^_^ 2013

Tuesday, 4 June 2013

Bringing up baby: 1 June 2013 - Drawing: Spider web

spider web draft i (c) Atilla 2013
spider web draft ii (c) Atilla 2013
spider web draft iii (c) Atilla 2013
spider web final (c) Atilla 2013
Atilla was busy using ColorPadFree app on the ipad  and I was worried he might erase his work again. So I saved draft I and II and III, and he saved the final version, saying "Finished". This kid is smarter than I give him credit for. And a quick learner. 

Wednesday, 29 May 2013

Bringing up baby: Other milestones

In other news, Tilly achieved the milestone of completing his spiral animal jigsaw puzzle all by himself. The puzzle was for aged 3yo+.

Tuesday, 28 May 2013

Bringing up baby: Atilla's picture 26 May 2013

(c) Atilla 2013
This is Atilla's first drawing using ColorPadFree app on the ipad.

Monday, 27 May 2013

Bringing up baby: Dual wielding Atilla at Two.

Dual wielding Atilla v2 (c) ^_^ 2013
1) On Saturday, Atilla was positively playful. He delayed his bath-time with Daddy through the excuse of helping Mummy with sweeping up the dining room and kitchen floors. Sure, as parental units, we like to encourage volunteers with household chores. We give verbal instructions, such as,
"You need a big broom, and the brush. You don't need two big brooms."
"Even Mister Miyagi couldn't use two brooms at the same time."

We discover new things.
"Well, Tilly just proved me wrong. He can use two brooms at the same time." And he did. He really did. Each broom head swept up the bits on the floor.

Then Daddy came in, and Tilly pursued Daddy's feet with two brooms.
"I'm two!" Tilly says proudly.

2) Atilla is becoming incredibly verbose. His language is practiced every day. It's so cute. I love hearing it. What he says is grammatically correct, and can be contextually wrong. He says, "I'm two!" frequently throughout the day. He is two years old.

What he means is, "I have two [of the same items]". 

3) Tilly can count to two. Proven.
3.1) We're wondering if he can start his count from 1. His counting system often starts, "Two, Four, Six" or "Two Four Five".
3.2) I'm wondering if he quite understands counting. I've been the audience as he counts his 4 stuffed animal bed companions, "Two Four Five Six Seven Eight Nine Ten".

Note: Dual-wielding Atilla at One.

Tuesday, 21 May 2013

Bringing up baby: Bunga bunga & 21 May 2013

Tilly has a new sound: "Bunga bunga", "Bunga bung"

It is used in Play, such as when he's stomping around on the bed, or clapping games, or Banging Things On Other Things games.

Last night was quite good. For the first time, he asked to use the toilet to poop. We were so happy. I hope it continues. It's only been two years since we started Elimination Communication.

I've made him his second set of slippers. They're still too big. He made a request for another one. Daddee protested, saying it takes too long. We'll see. I've found the stash of acrylic 8ply which could do the trick. No more fancy stuff, just a straight pattern. I should be able to complete it within two weeks.

This morning, midnight even, Tilly had a nightmare. He woke up inconsolable, and I had to cuddle him like a baby, like I used to. That was the only way he calmed down after 5-10mins of shrieking tears to the point of up-chucking.

This morning, 5.30am or so, I woke up with the pitter patter of little feet kicking my face. Nice. He'd taken off his slippers because they were too big.


We're getting better at exiting the home in the morning while keeping good humour. Tilly likes to play a lot.

He does make life a lot more fun.

Tuesday, 14 May 2013

Bringing up baby: update April 2013

It’s been a while. Just been too busy with life.

Tilly has developed quite a bit since the last instalment. He’s verbalising much more. Some new catchphrases:
“Oh sure!”
“Be careful!”
"Thank you"
"Help please!"
"I'm stuck!"
"Find Daddy"
"Find Polar Bear"
“What you doing?!” accompanied by a body pose of standing sternly with knuckled hands on hips.
"Go way" (after he's been told by Authority not to do something, and he wants to do it anyway).

He’s still Marching, and Beep beeping.

Marching has a new addition. We march around on the bed in a steady pace, then stamp/march furiously in one spot, then fall over. He’s small enough to bounce on his tush. I have to bounce more carefully.

One of my happy thoughts is when he wanted to March March with a freebie Mother’s Day rose I’d received from the supermarket.

I made him some slippers a few weeks ago. They are too big. He’ll grow into them. In the meantime, they keep falling off his feet, he cries, and we have to find them and put them back on his feet. Even if it’s still dark and he’s just come out of bed and we’ve been woken directly from a deep sleep.

His bodyshape is changing. He’s more lines than rounds now.

He is absolutely lovely.

Wednesday, 3 April 2013

Bringing up baby: 2 April 2013

Today I had Tilly all to myself.

It started at 6.15am. Change in routine, he wanted yoghurt rather than milk as his first thing.

Why not.

Then, play dough.

Why not.

All this while I did some tidying up of the kitchen, neatening out the laundry (so I can take it outside to hang in the to-be-expected sunshine). Thanks to Husband's help, we caught the rubbish truck in time.

Palaver happened. I got to eat breakfast, and doze for 5 mins or so.

Then we all got dressed to take Husband to work, and Tilly to the doctor.

He likes the fishes in the aquarium at the clinic. He has an ear infection, and is teething - not that I notice any sort of these things, even though I floss his teeth most nights.

Highlights of today:
  • Being with Tilly as he watches Michael Jackson - on the mega screen at the electronics store - preparing for his last world tour. Tilly could so totally dance like on Smooth Criminal.
  • Accompanying Tilly on is walkabout around the playground, and back into Sylvia Park, and into the mechanical Buzzy Bee.
  • Not spending $40 on the cutest little backpack for a toddler.
  • Being with Tilly as he had his morning snack, sitting on the couches in the middle of the mall. We saw rainbows on the ceiling, where the light refracted through the glass. He was charmed. I found him charming.
  • Not spending $20 on the cutest lunch backpack from Smiggle.
  • Accompanying Tilly on his walkabout up the escalator, and down the lift.
  • Being with Tilly while he played at Thomas the Tank table. I also had another chance to relax, and almost caught up on my 6am wake-up stress.
  • I bought Animalia, by Graeme Base, for Tilly. He swapped me Polar Bear for it, and he carried the large paperback all by himself down the stairs, through the mall. At some point he decided I could help to carry him as he carried his new book.
  • We saw the National Bank horse again. Tilly greeted it, and then allowed we could leave to get to the car.
  • Tilly allowed me to nap for 5mins in the rocking chair, after he had awoken from his nap. He was so quiet, and looked after himself, sitting quietly with Polar Bear.
  • We went to the doctor again, as Tilly developed a persistent hacking cough. Normal, said the doctor.
  • We went to the playground. He swung.
  • He allowed us to go to the local sushi shop, so I could get some miso soup. I got him a snack-sized sushi.
  • He enjoyed his sushi. The birds enjoyed his spilled sushi.
  • He swung again.
  • Everybody else went home. Tilly decided to play on the other areas: lizard wall (he tried for a while by himself, and became frustrated, and decided I could help him - I'm so proud he tried), log bridge, blue slide, lizard wall, yellow slide, green net next to yellow slide.
  • He climbed the green net to reach the yellow slide almost all by himself. The only physical assistance I gave was to heave him onto the first rung.
  • He climbed the green net by himself twice.
  • He played by himself, while I sat at the top of the yellow slide platform steps. He made hand actions, and described a story to himself.

Tuesday, 26 March 2013

Flashback: pregnancy, new mum


I remember what I hated about being pregnant. Unable to eat properly. Hunger. Thirst. Unable to find a satisfactory beverage. Peeing. Constipation. No sushi. No rare beef. No sashimi. No hummus. No cold-cut sandwiches. No fresh salad from cafe. No cold chicken drum to gnaw on. No Caesar salad. No runny poached eggs. Chorfing pills. Needles. Scans.

I remember what I hated about being a new mum. Sleep deprivation. Resentment with my sleeping husband. Feeling sorry for myself as I stood over the sink, leaking milk for an hour. Unable to eat properly, as my baby wants my attention just when I want to eat. Unable to meet my high expectations of going for a walk with my baby.


I remember what I liked about being pregnant. Eating delicious food, like chicken don. Eating adult servings of food, like a full-sized Burger Fuel Bio Fuel burger. Eating crisps for lunch supplement, and not feeling the guilt. I like the feeling of a baby in me, kicking against my hand.

I remember what I liked about being a new mum. Watching my baby asleep, the expressions chasing across an innocent face. Holding my newborn close. Mostly, I love the joy my child has given me as he grows and shows the wonders of his world to me.

Friday, 22 February 2013

Bringing up baby: 31 01 13 Stipple

31 Jan 2013 (c) Atilla 2013
Medium: paper, paint, crayon, brush

Thursday, 21 February 2013

Bringing up baby: Painting Orange

12 Nov 2012 (c) Atilla 2012
Medium: paint, paper, cars

Wednesday, 20 February 2013

Bringing up baby: Fireworks Painting 2012

Fireworks painting 2012 (c) Atilla 2012
Medium: paper, paint, glitter, hands, brush (?)

Tuesday, 19 February 2013

Bringing up baby: Painting Purple-Red

Nov 2012 (c) Atilla 2012
Medium: paper, paint, hands, tools.

Monday, 18 February 2013

Bringing up baby: 16 Feb 2013

This was a splendid day. Highlights:
  • Sleeping in until 7.30am, where Tilly woke early and preoccupied himself with self-inspired activities.
  • Enjoying breakfast with Tilly, where he ate both peaches from Ah Ma's garden (one of my bucket list is to have Tilly enjoy food from the garden - Ah Ma's garden counts).
  • Cleaning up after breakfast, I did the dishes and Tilly swept the floors. He used all three brooms/brushes and the floors were quite cleaned. He had some fun chasing me with the brooms. We did have an accident, for which I am responsible, when one long handle knocked the pepper mill onto the floor. He swept up the pepper dust very well.
  • We had great fun a the first nappy change. He bounced around on the bed, for a very long time. He flopped backwards onto the pillows many times. He stomped around in a circle.
  • We had yoghurt and muesli together.
  • We got to ambush Daddy when he came home from work.
  • Just before we got dressed for Chinese New Year lunch, we played Chased By Crocodile Stick. Tilly pursued Mummy and Daddy around the parental bedroom, aiming the crocodile stick at us. We perforced escaped into the closet, and onto the bed, and ran around the curtains.
  • Tilly watched Daddy shave.
  • We had a replete Family buffet banquet at Eight. Small portions, and plenty of them, and so well cooked !!!! Kiwi lamington yummy!
  • Nap for 3hrs.
  • Watching The Living Earth - Jungle.
  • Watching Tilly repeat his stomping-flopping routine for Daddy, after bath.
  • Flossing Tilly's teeth. I got 4 this time.
  • Reading to Tilly.
  • Tilly reading to himself for the duration of Brahm's Lullaby.
  • Turning off the light, and receiving a request to sing.
  • Tilly falling quietly asleep.

Friday, 15 February 2013

Bringing up baby: 11-13 Feb 2013

Tilly was ill. Vomited 7 times in 24 hours. But he was cheerful for all that, and his usual energetic self.

I cared for him today. It was fun. We slept in, he woke up, had his milk with Daddy, and vomited. They cleaned up, we had breakfast, Tilly vomited, we cleaned up, and took Daddy to work, visited the doctor who was very reassuring. We visited our town centre and the fountain, and pursued some idle pigeons. We dropped our winter duvet at the dry cleaners'. We picked up Tilly's Paedolyte from the pharmacy, bought the first hot cross buns of the season. Revisited the fountain, and Tilly didn't want to share the experience so we went exploring.

We walked a circuit around the Memorial Hall, and returned to our car. I took us to One Tree Hill playground with its stellar train.

We mucked about, uncaring of how long we took. Apart from our experience with the train - I may repeat the experience with Tilly when he's considerably older and less likely to take his time appreciating a new object.

He swung, he ate, he drank, he swung. He climbed the steps up the slide, levered himself to the top, and slid down -- all by himself! No Mummy-boost required or requested.

He explored a bit, finding the Dog Poo receptacle quite amusing.

He took his time, and I enjoyed watching him and playing with him.

He fell asleep in the car, and continued to nap at home.

I napped with him.

When we woke up, we played some more. He was amenable to waiting for Daddy's verdict on whether he could watch the Dinosaur DVD again. He was very good at waiting. In the meantime, we emptied out his extant toy box. We hooped. We spun his top. We opened up Teresa's gift to him - the Animal calendar he was so fascinated by in 2012. We read the calendar many times. I drew the animals many times for Tilly. He played with a toy fan. I drew him playing with the toy fan. We played the keyboard. We played Chase, with his crocodile snappy toy: he pursues me around the living room and dining room, threatening me with the crocodile, while I do my humble best to escape by running, crawling, and dodging.

12 Feb 2013

One of Tilly's games: Bye bye. I may have mentioned it before. This afternoon, I realise his After Bath game of Bye Bye is a rehearsal for his True Bye Bye game, wherein he sits in the driving seat of the car and pretends to drive. Hence the three pillows requirement. One for the back of the seat, one for the steering wheel, one for the dashboard.

13 February 2013

Today Tilly got the chance to play in the puddle remaining after the rain. I had the chance to observe him playing with one of his friends, Nell. They had so much fun exploring the world when it was wet. Tilly slid down the slide, which was unexpectedly slippery and fast. He was surprised at the speed, and thumped onto the wooden patio. He sat there. He chortled. Then he went back for several more rounds.

Thursday, 14 February 2013

Bringing up baby: Tidy Tilly Takes Charge

Tidy Tilly Takes Charge (c) ^_^ 2013
I find it very charming that Tilly likes to take his turn at tidying up. Parental units bring out the broom to do the initial sweep, and Tilly barrels for the small dustpan and brush to take his turn at tidying up.

He brushes it into the dustpan, and then he takes the dustpan to the kitchen bin, and empties it into the bin.

I am charmed.

Tuesday, 12 February 2013

Bringing up baby: Ah Ee quote 23 Jan 2013

He shared a piece of sugar cane with me last Fri. Mum gave him a little container with a handful of small pieces. He picked up one for him and held it in one hand as he grabbed another piece which he gave to me so we could have at the same time. 

Monday, 11 February 2013

Bringing up baby: painting 22 Jan 2013

22 Jan 2013 (c) Atilla 2013
Medium: hands, paint, paper.

Friday, 8 February 2013

Bringing up baby: drawing 16 Jan 2013

drawing 16 Jan 2013 (c) Atilla 2013
Medium: crayon, paper.

Thursday, 7 February 2013

Bringing up baby: Waitangi Day 2013

We had such a great day.

Tilly awoke early, and endeared himself poking sleepy Mummy in the eye, investigating the band-aid plaster on her hand, general wriggling about. Daddy got left alone to slumber unmolested.

Daddy eventually woke up and looked after Tilly for an hour. During that hour, Tilly had two helpings of Weetbix cake.

Mummy woke up, and prepped dinner (which, in the end, Daddy rescued at the end of the day). And then we decided we would have a picnic lunch at Western Springs.

Western Springs was right full out of car park spaces, so we moved on to the Auckland Domain. This was a great idea.

After picnic lunch, we visited the pond and the Winter Gardens where Tilly had a high old time testing out his knowledge of parks. Thanks to his newly acquired knowledge via his one of his current favourite books - "Peepo" [Allan Ahlberg reads his book] - Tilly  knows parks contain ponds, and ponds contain fishes.

So, we spend time hunting for ponds, and in the ponds for fishes. And actually, he was right. Where we found ponds, we found fishes. I reminded Tilly that he couldn't touch the fishes.

We enjoyed the Fernery, twice.

Tilly had a mini picnic by our car.

We returned home. We mucked about, Tilly and I, while Daddy had his Quiet Time. We played Wii: Link's Crossbow Training, Wii Fit2, Wii Sports (not necessarily in that order - imperfect memory an' all). We watched some of BBC & David Attenborough's "The Living Planet". Tilly fell asleep in my arms.

Other things happenned - Daddy rescued dinner, Tilly woke up, our evening routine ran an hour later than preferred but everybody was happy.

Friday, 1 February 2013

Bringing up baby: More games 1 Feb 2013

More games I've discovered Tilly likes to play.

* Nappy. This involves Tilly having a wonderful time wriggling and wrestling with the person changing his nappy. This game is played mainly with Mummy or Daddy, or person equally tolerant. Bonus points if Nappy team consists of Tilly vs 2 Adults -- the bonus points are for Tilly, natch.

Wednesday, 30 January 2013

Bringing up baby: 27-28 January 2013

27 January 2013 highlights:
* Tilly riding his tricycle in a circuit around the partition between kitchen and lounge, "Bye bye Tilly. Bye bye Tilly. Bye bye Atilla. Bye bye Mummy." Then, riding up to me (doing the dishes), "Hello Mummy." I was Charmed! (this is the first time I've heard it from him!) "Hello Tilly"
* allowing Tilly all the time he wanted to make friends with a dog, Emma, at the supermarket;
* picnic lunch at the playground - Tilly didn't want to have lunch, until it was explained and understood that it was a Picnic Lunch at the playground. Then he insisted he didn't need a bib (which I foolishly agreed. sigh).  He was able to wander around the grounds and hillock during lunch;
* playing with Tilly at the playground after the picnic - Tilly had had many swings on the swing with Daddy. After lunch it was my turn to play with Tilly. We mucked about in the nicest way, all around the playground. The climbing nets, the yellow slide, sitting on the seats (and sitting on our hats).

28 January 2013 highlights:
* Tilly's Breakfast Routine - he et his yoghurt & muesli, he et 1/4 of my bagel, he et 1/4 of Daddy's cold smoked salmon. Then, he wanted to Play with Trike - specifically, an adult taking him for a fast whirl around. We convinced him to take Giraffe for a ride on his trike. Tillly acceded, and gleefully dragged Giraffe on a circuit. This seemed to him to be unsatisfactory. So Teddy Bear was the next toy experiencing the Triking expedition. It was very cute -
* going to Panmure Lagoon pools - it started so well. Tilly was very playful when it came to undressing and re-dressing in his swimming gear. Then it was sunscreen time. It was a performance to have Tilly co-operate to wear his shorts, to ride in the car to the pools. He put up a barrage of negotiations comprising "No. No. No!" tears, and sobs and wails. He sought a second opinion from Mummy. I explained to him that yes, we wear our swimming togs to go swimming. Yes, we wear shorts over our togs, and we take our shorts off at the pools before we go swimming. The noise lessened. Then we assayed with leaving the house without his socks and shoes on -- no, Tilly wants to have his socks and shoes on! Oh-kay... Tilly didn't want to sit down in his car seat... Not sure how that got settled, but I remember I explained to Daddy that Tilly was upset because he thought Daddy was angry with him. Something happened. Daddy got into driver's seat (I think perhaps Tilly was unfamiliar with Daddy driving him to the pools - usually it is me in the driving seat). I re-iterated firmly, "We're going to the pools."
* Tilly being encouraged to play and explore at Panmure Lagoon - we mainly enjoyed the Splash Pad, where Tilly had fun using the water cannon on Mummy and Daddy, and finding rainbows, and we enjoyed playing Fish Daddy in the indoor pool, and we enjoyed a snack break on the grass in the shade;
* Tilly's After Bath Routine - this is his Nekkid Time. He has a chance to bounce around the king-sized bed in the spare room. When he was much younger, he would use his nappy boxes as a fort, then as a climbing/sitting area; this stopped when his weight became more than boxes could support. Now, he builds a fort using the 3 pillows and 2 large towels and 1 baby bath tub. Or possibly, he is re-enacting the Going Out Routine, wherein he sits in his carseat (with front bolster) and says "Bye bye" to everybody and everybody says "bye bye" to him. This weekend he's ressurrected his name: "Bye bye Tilly. Bye bye Atilla."
* Tilly's bed-time routine - I really enjoy Tilly's bedtime routine. I love reading to him, I love how he participates in the story-telling. I love how he sits in my lap. I love how he chooses the books to be read. I love how he plays with his toys. I love his family play with his Teddy Bear, Teddy Bear2, Giraffe.

Tuesday, 29 January 2013

Bringing up baby: 26 January 2013

The trend of Tilly's maturation and worldly experiences appears to indicate a propensities for the unusual. If a Google search for help is any indication. First, pomegranate seed up the nose. Now, biting, and swallowing, a piece of plastic spoon.

Today was one of our splendid days as a family.

It was the day after our big family get-together, wherein we all stayed up late, and awoke late.

One of the consequences being that Tilly was able to withstand staying awake until mid-afternoon, allowing us three to say our good-byes at the airport to the family returning home to Brisbane, and enjoy one big family lunch at the airport.

We woke this morning (Tilly in our parental bed). Tilly snuffled closer to me in an attempt to have another snooze before parents woke up to look after him. Oh, the happiness on his face when he realised I was also awake! Such a lovely smile.

He was very nice to me, giving me sufficient time to gather my thoughts and encourage the rest of my anatomy to get on with the day, get dressed, wake up, and take Tilly downstairs for his morning milk. He busied himself, bringing Giraffe. He talked to Giraffe, "yes? yes? Okay."

Daddy reposed in bed. I hauled Tilly-carrying-Giraffe, and carried his water bottle down the stairs.   Tilly then surprised me, by insistently wriggling so as to be put down to walk. "Tilly," I called to him, "can you put water bottle on the table and put Giraffe on his seat?" He surprised me a second time, by accepting the water bottle (he is now co-ordinate s and strong enough to carry his water bottle and Giraffe and walk At The Same Time!) and following my instructions. Almost.

"Oh no," he said. This was when I realised Somebody had moved Giraffe's seat last night from it's usual place. I rectified the matter, shovelling the pile of IDon'tRecall off Giraffe's seat, and moving the seat where it out to be.

Anyhow, Tilly was very nice at the Milk Routine. I enjoy the way he taps his plastic milk bottle against the granite bench, how he teases me by handing me the teat to pour milk into, then smirks at me as he finally hands me the bottle proper; I pour the warmed milk into the bottle, to the soundtrack of plastic bottle top banging on the granite bench; he waits patiently as I rinse out the milky Pyrex jug, three times; I pick him up off his steps, and carry him to the rocking chair; he settles down for a snuggle and milk, I close my eyes for more shut-eye and snuggle.

Tilly was also very nice to me at Change Nappy Routine. He was happy.

Daddy made us a hot breakfast this morning - scrambled eggs on buttered English muffins. We ate every bit. Tilly interspersed his breaking fast with episodic Play. I simply focused on finishing my tea. Daddy was so very very nice to Tilly. They did Triking. They did Reading. They did MagnaDoodling. Tilly also did Empty-My-Chest-Box.

This gave me sufficient time to catch up on necessary housework, to prepare for this long weekend of excellent weather.

And then it was noon, the time I was told the West Auckland convoy was leaving. The Central Auckland gang got our act together, and removed from our house. This involved repeatedly telling Tilly, "we're going out. put on your socks and shoes". Optimistically,Tilly insisted on brining his outside ball.

En route to airport, I was informed the ETA had been moved to 12.40pm. The CA gang diverted to this lovely Angelican church Daddy had discovered a while ago, wee playground included. How foresighted of Tilly to have brought the ball.

We three mucked about a bit. I had so much fun. The wee playground was just right for Tilly to climb, and slide, and hide. The park bench was just right for Daddy to sit on. We invented a few games today.

Boomp. This requires a park bench, a ball, and two people. Person A is sitting down. Person B kicks the ball to A. Person A boomps the ball back to Person B using his hips. Ad nauseum.

1-2-3-Jump! This requires at least three things to jump off. Today it was wooden stumps embedded in concrete. Three people stand on the stumps. Person A counts, "one two three jump!" And all three people jump down at the same time. All three get back on the stumps, and it's Person B's turn to count down and call. Then Person C's turn.
   As a variation, running around the rubbish bin may be incorporated into the end routine, before returning to stand on the stumps.
   Another variation, the count down and calling may be silent. This adds to the challenge.
I'm really proud of this game, as the idea of all three of us getting on the stumps then jumping off and then getting back on, was Tilly's. As was running around the rubbish bin. My only contribution was the count down and calling.

We also kicked the ball around. Tilly pursued a few birds. Husband and I chatted idly for a bit. And then it was 1pm, time to return to our plan of arriving at the airport to say our good byes.

En route, 1.05pm, I am informed the WA convoy had departed. This meant CA gang had to find more ways of entertaining a demanding, yet adorable, two year old.

On the way, Tilly taught Daddy and me how to make the brrrm brrrm sounds of an engine. It is surprisingly harder than it appears. I have much respect for Tilly's noise. When I do brrrm brrrm, I get a head ache. I found myself making raspberry noises more easily than brrrm brrrm sounds. Daddy picked up the knack faster than I did, but he didn't compare to the Master.

We arrived at Check-In. Made our way to the viewing lounge. Tilly was charmed. And charming. He really enjoyed himself. I wondered whether it might be worth it to spend one whole day at the airport for him to get satiated.

Eventually he did get bored when the last of the planes had taken off, and allowed us to go find Ah Ma.

Later on, after he'd finished his lunch, he requested to be taken to see the viewing lounge again. This was after he'd bitten off the end of the black plastic teaspoon. It was very close to our pre-agreed car park limit. But I couldn't deny my tired sweet baby one more chance to see real aeroplanes close up. He and I went up together. He had so much fun making himself at home. There weren't many planes taking off, mostly small ones landing. He was tired, but still didn't want to leave. I explained to him I was going home, having a nap, then playing fireworks.

"Home, nap, fireworks."
"No nap," he negotiated.
"Nap, then fireworks," I stood my ground. I thought that was pretty generous, considering he'd had at least 6 hours screen time at Ah Ma's on Thursday.
"No nap," he negotiated.
"Nap, then fireworks."

He turned his back to me, and faced the window facing aeroplanes.

I said, "Bye bye Tilly. See you later," and turned my back too, to walk away.

"Wahh," he cried.

I stopped, and turned to face him. "Come with me," I entreated.

He was torn. He didn't want to leave the planes. He didn't want to be without an Anchor. "Waah," he cried. I walked back to him, and cuddled him, and stroked him, walking to the hallway, doing my best to take his attention away from the window where a large Air New Zealand plane was coming up to the window.

Sigh. Best laid plans often go awry. He turned his head at almost the last moment. He spotted the plane.

Frustration tantrum ensued. We had a literal stand-off. He'd wriggled himself out off my arms, and was making his way back to the window, where there was a small crowd of watchers interested in the same plane. However, I was standing in the hallway almost at the turn of the corner going away from the viewing lounge.

He had a hard decision to make. Will he leave Mummy and go into the crowd of watchers by himself?

I had a hard decision to make. Will I indulge him in this rare opportunity to see a large plane up close? Or do I stay with my first decision, to maintain the principle of Mummy Makes The Rules And Tilly Obeys?

I didn't know how long our stand-off would be. I was also concerned we may be paying more in parking fees. My heart ached for his frustration. I was so sorry he was crying. I wanted to comfort him. I wanted to take him to the window so he could see the plane up close. I was concerned about parking fees.

He stamped his foot, still crying. He was very Torn.

I held my arms open to him. He turned on the spot, in a circle, still undecided on his best course of action. I held my arms still more entreatingly, warmly, in a non-dominating way.

He reluctantly slowly stepped the distance of the hallway, towards me, still sobbing, still frustrated. I knelt down, all the better to enfold my unhappy darling in my arms.

We hugged, him and I. We hugged, and he wept into my neck and shirt. We hugged, and I comforted as best I could, knowing I was the agent for his distress. I murmured to him how happy I was he decided to choose me, how glad I was. I promised him un-timed fireworks session. I told him I'd tell Daddy how nice Tilly was when he chose to come to Mummy. I repeated all these as I held him close and patted his back and carried him downstairs to the rest of the Family.

We said our prolonged farewells to everybody.

Brief episode of Tilly's Tears in the car.

Then home, and some respite while Tilly continued his afternoon nap. I caught up on more housework.

Life got much better. As advised, when Tilly awoke from his nap, we gave him bread, all the better to make sure the plastic wasn't stuck in his throat. We played fireworks, aka Wii games.

Daddy and Tilly got the high score in WiiFit Skateboard Beginner - 159 points. It was amazing. I'm glad I was there to see it. Tilly and I clocked the Link Crossbow Training Finale 3 for the second time. Go us!

Tilly maintained his good mood during dinner. And Bath. And Bedtime Routine.

I had more chances to catch up on housework.

What I'd give to not do any housework for one day, and not have the work accumulate for the next day.

Tuesday, 22 January 2013

Bringing up baby: summary early Jan 2013

I started writing something yesterday. But I forgot what I wrote as it wasn't saved.

So, here are some of the highlights of our lives recently.

* late Dec 2012 - 16-17 Jan 2013 vocabulary: These were the days and times Tilly tried to communicate with me using his limited vocabulary to describe his world. "Boat" "water" What do you think that means? In my world, 'boat' is the line of boats on our way home, by the off-ramp onto Ellerslie-Panmure Highway, and 'water' is Tilly's request to drink water. And boy oh boy do I want to get home by whatever means possible.

Such a hullabaloo when I took the long distance yet quick way home via the bus route.

On 16th Jan, Tilly howled and wailed most of the way home. We were heavy traffic on the motorway that day so it was an earful of 45mins. As it happened, I had finally understood what Tilly was trying to convey but unfortunately I was unable to accommodate him as there was heavy traffic blocking my way via the non-bus route.

On 17th Jan, using our new-found communication skills and vocabulary, we travelled home via the non-bus route - Tilly got the opportunity to view the Waitamata Harbour on our way home.

The next goal: what does Tilly mean when he speaks of a word sounding like "napisan" while sitting naked in the bath?

* mid Jan 2013 - some of Tilly's games are: Favourites; Breakfast; Dinner; Bye Bye Thomas, Hide Daddy.

'Favourites' is when he decrees whom can assist in his life's necessities, like cradling him as he drinks his bottle of milk.

'Breakfast' is when he makes two or more conflicting decisions about his breakfast routine. This can result is a big mess, as on 15th Jan. My hot tea was on the table. Tilly decided he wanted his water bottle. His water bottle was brought right to his hand. He then shouted, "no no!" and his hand knocked his water bottle right at my mug of hot tea. My mug of hot tea fell onto my lap and work dress, and the hot tea splashed onto some of the woollen laundry and a big mess was wet on the floor.

'Dinner' is much like Breakfast, taking place later in the day.

'Bye Bye Thomas' is much more fun with more comprehensible rules of play. This is when he (and a companion, optional) take up his Blue, and his Red, Thomas the Tank Engine DVD case/s with handles for a walk around the room or house, saying "Bye bye Thomas" and waving the DVD case/s. [I think this game developed from a similar game, where Tilly would take any handle-shaped object and wave 'bye bye'.]

'Hide Daddy' is heaps of fun. This game takes place after Bath, and is the end of the Bath routine. The rules: Tilly has to have his nappy on. Daddy knocks on the door of the bedroom, and waits to be invited in. Tilly hides from Daddy. Daddy is invited in by Mummy. Daddy asks, "Where's Tilly?" Mummy replies, "I don't know. I was looking for him." Tilly springs out at Daddy from his hiding place. Daddy reacts with Great Surprise.

* 21 Jan 2013 - Tilly was enjoying his bowl of corn tube snacks. Rory sidled up, and tried to take one. I fended Rory off, saying, "Rory, you've got to ask. You've got to wait until Tilly says 'yes'." This occurred a few times. Rory tried to distract Tilly with a giraffe, but Tilly wasn't fooled and kept both hands in his snack bowl. A teacher joined the troupe. Rory snuck another corn tube. "Rory. That was rude," I said. "You've got to ask, and wait until Tilly says 'yes'." The teacher mis-understood the situation and thought Tilly wanted to share. I corrected her assumptions. I had to leave after that, so I don't know if Tilly was able to enjoy the rest of his food in peace.

* 21 Jan 2013 bedtime - I was so tired. Tilly stayed up longer than I did. We read the "Dark Dark Tale" together, but he had to read "Peepo" by himself. Then he laid down beside me on the floor on the portable cot mattress and we slumbered. Until I awoke and moved him into his own cot.

Thursday, 17 January 2013

Bringing up baby: 13 January 2013 bedtime

Overall, Tilly was incredibly cute tonight.

He kept giving me hugs after dinner, as I was cleaning up the kitchen. He waved Bye Bye to me as he left with Daddy for bath time. He said Thank You to Daddy as daddy poured water down his back (this was after Daddy said thank you to Tilly when Tilly poured water down daddy's front). At After Bath Play, Tilly decided to hide his duck, his shirt, his shorts behind his head. (It didn't work.)

The cutest event I was privileged to witness was his role play at bedtime. Teddy Bear was elevated to the status of Actor, and had the role of junior. This meant Tilly had to find a place for Teddy Bear to sit. Tilly had to select a book for Teddy Bear to read - Tickle Tickle Peter (touchy feely Peter Rabbit book).
"More? More book."
Tilly had to arrange the book so it would stay in Teddy Bear's lap to read. I was elevated to Actor, and he selected an appropriate book for me to read - There's a Wocket in my Pocket (original version). Tilly selected an appropriate book for himself to read - How Do I Feel (intended age range is 3-9mo). We three read together for a bit.

Then Tilly decided Teddy Bear needed to be in a different seat. So the Play got transferred to his red couch. Caillou, who was already on the couch, became an Actor. I was relegated to scenery. Caillou needed a book.
"Wait. More book." Caillou got a Littlies magazine, opened to a carefully selected page.
Teddy Bear needed a different book. (Tilly got Teddy Bear seated on the couch all by himself, which was quite a determined achievement of overreaching.) "Okay? Wait. More book. Wait. More book."
Horse blanket (a lightweight cloth, maybe a scarf, printed with stampeding horses) was involved in Play. Caillou and Teddy Bear needed to be satisfactorily covered by Horse blanket. Satisfied, Tilly joined them on the couch. They read a book - Tickle Tickle Peter. (They read the duck page.)  "Okay? One more book. Bedtime. One more book. Bedtime. Bedtime," he announced to his Players.
Tilly got off the couch to select one more book.
"Music," he became distracted, and picked up his tambourine.
"Tilly," I interjected, "you said one more book. Bedtime."
He looked nonplussed. What was scenery doing, talking? The Play momentarily broke.
He decided he needed to disassemble his bed for the green muslin cloth which is used as his bed sheet. I prevented him. Wailing ensued. After 30s he calmed down and carried on with his Play.
However, he is tired by this stage of the day. He lost his balance on the edge of the red couch, and fell off, banging his head on the wall. Outraged tears mingled with surprise and fright and hurt.
I comforted him, rubbing his head, apologising, and hugging him close. He calmed down enough to try to carry on with his Play.
He climbed back onto the couch, and looked distrustfully at the edge beside him. He was on the cusp of frustration again, so I assisted in his Play as best I could, taking direction from him. We read a three books: How to Catch a Star, a Shaun the Sheep story, and a touchy-feely book about animals.
"One more book, in bed," I said. And we did. This involved Giraffe, Teddy Bear2, and Horse blanket.
Tilly wanted one more book. I looked suspiciously at him, and acquiesced; it is such a hot night, delaying sleep was a good idea. We began reading about Idon'tremember. Part through, I was so tired, and hot.
"Tilly, how about we sleep down there?" I pointed at the cot mattress on the floor. "It's so hot."
He agreed.
We laid down on the mattress. It is so hot, even with the fan going. He kicked several times. His skin became sweaty.
After a while he fell asleep. So did I.

Wednesday, 16 January 2013

Bringing up baby: Vocabulary

Tilly knows quite a lot of words, more than he uses with me.

Is that Mummy?
There's Daddy.

This way.
Carriage escort.
Snow peak.
Skull shooting.
Skype machine.

Uh oh where it go?
Baby sharing.
This way dog.

12 January 2013: Zebra crossing
Tilly practised crossing at a pedestrian crossing. I called it "zebra crossing" at first. So, Tilly insisted on crossing to find the zebras. D'oh. We had to cross back. Then cross again to look for zebras. We walked along but didn't find any zebras.

Later on, Tilly attempted another zebra hunt with Daddy.
11 January 2013: enounciation, and finger spelling It was so hot and humid last night - maybe due to the Australian fires, the South fires - I brought out the fan. It whirred loudly. It fascinated Tilly.

"Fan," I pointed it to him.
"Fam," he tried the word.
"Fan," I said,"with an 'N'. Nih"
"Fam," he tried again.
"Fan," I finger-spelled the word. "F. A. N. Nih."
"Fan." I racked my memory for an 'N' word familiar to him. "F. A. N. Like in 'No'"
"Fan," he said.

Gosh, phonics is useful at such a young age! I'm gonna look for some.