Terrible Two’s?

I’m not sure what’s happened recently.

Joel has been rather grumpy and although ‘hate’ is a strong word, he seems to hate me sometimes. Maybe it’s not hate. Maybe it’s just prefer Daddy time as Daddy is the fun, jump off the sofa one, whereas Mummy says no biscuits (diddits) before dinner. If Mummy weren’t around, I imagine Daddy would give biscuits for dinner. with chocolate for pudding). I guess one of us has to be the disciplinarian and it’s obviously not going to be him and we’re not doing Joel any favours with both of us being the good cop.

If I take him up to bed, he cries for Steve. If I take him for his dinner at the dining table, he cries for Steve.

(and we’re not talking little sobs, it’s proper wailing with tears and sort of ‘Ste-e-e-e-ev-ve-e-e’ in a drawn out suffering sort of way). It’s not flattering for me at all. Part of me thinks it’s sweet he loves his Daddy, and a bit finds it amusing that he has to sob in the manner that he does, but a bit of me feels desolate that he doesn’t see me in that way too.

I know we’ve spent a lot of time together recently and we have Monday and Fridays together, and he loves his Daddy time but I just wish he could have it without making me feel unwanted and unloved!

By the end of Monday, he was being a right pickley monkey and just seems to be fed up of me, and just wanted his Daddy’s time. Then on Tuesday morning he was a complete angel. He got up all happy, I was able to get dressed and ready for work with a happy boy, the Tavares tune came on the radio, Heaven Must Be Missing and Angel, and we danced around and he laughed and I laughed and it was lovely. And we walked to mum and dads where he was charming, gave them a wonderful ‘Gramma’ and ‘Da’ and ‘cheerios’, I even think he’s putting his please ‘dees’ onto words to make a little sentence!

Then Wednesday came and he turned back into a surly toddler again. Nothing I could do was right. He didn’t want to put his coat on, get in his buggy, get out of his buggy, walk down the nursery path or anything helpful. Then we sorted his slippers and hung his coat up and he gave me a big smile, said ‘bye-bye’ and gave me a kiss and a cuddle and I went to work feeling emotional at how lovely he could be.

I sense that the future months are going to have a lot of ups and downs, and I’m so glad the ups outweigh the downs. And even if I’m not the fun one, I’m the one he wants a cuddle from when he’s sad or down and he comes running to me. And he calls me ‘Mama’ and I hope he never stops 🙂

Mr Independent

Joel is going through a phase. Or maybe it’s not such a phase as just the way things are going to be from now on?

Pretty much he wants to be completely independent and won’t accept help willingly from me. This includes things like climbing the stairs (he insists on holding the bannister which he can’t reach and taking each step one at a time like an adult), eating (we can’t spoon feed him at all now and he screams if we try to scrape the yoghurt pot for him) and he just wants to do it all himself.

Except getting dressed. That is where the independence fails. When he becomes Mr Floppy for coats or tries planking for vests and trousers.

Anyway, we’ve had a good morning, and been out for a good walk in the fresh air. I lost 1/2 lb at weighin. We’ve had butternut squash curry for lunch and he’s gone down for a nap while I watch Modern Family (so very funny!)

And this afternoon Steve is going to come home so we can have an afternoon together somewhere! It’s a nice start to the weekend 🙂

EDIT: How could I forget he has to walk in the house on his own, and cross the threshold without help? Else he screams and cries and heads back out to do it himself!! As demonstrated this afternoon on our return from a nice family afternoon out at the local wildlife centre.

What a Weekend….

It’s been good but tiring with Joel throwing out some unexpected sleeping habits!

On Friday we packed up the car, and once Steve was back from filming in Liverpool, we drove down to Exeter. It was about 4pm and we stopped at 5.30 for a bite to eat and to let Joel stretch his legs. Since Thursday, he’d been a bit ill. Well, not ill persay, I felt that he’d caught a rotten cold and was teething heavily. On Friday he was a bit floppy, needed regular calpol and didn’t want to play with his cousins who were visiting.

So it seemed to fit in with the poorly lurgy every time we see Steve’s family. It seems to alternate between me and Joel and this time, Joel was suffering.

He fell asleep in the car at 7.30 and had 45 minutes (we think. When we pulled off the motorway I glanced at him and he was looking right back at me!!)

And then he seemed to go into hyper drive and wouldn’t settle until about 9.30. He then woke up at 4am and there was not settling him back to sleep. He was boiling hot and totally awake. I guess he knew he was somewhere different and wanted to play and explore. Steve was in his unresponsive mode, so I got up and took Joel downstairs. We put Peppa pig on the ipad and he pottered about watching, and playing with Granny’s toys. I made him some toast, which he only licked the jam off and by 7am he was nodding off to sleep so I took him back up to our room with his cot in.

I went back to bed too, as I was shattered, and the next thing I knew it was 10am! And we’d missed the first plan of the day which was to leave at 9am to take Steve’s younger brother to football and head to the beach.

Steve’s Dad gave Joel a bowl of shreddies for breakfast which Joel looked at, said ‘no, cheerios’ and wouldn’t eat. They’d not got any cheerios in so as I’d forgotten toothbrushes, I nipped to the supermarket and got some bits for Joel to tempt him with, and cheerios, and other essentials. Joel didn’t want them anyway when we got back, but Steve’s dad had made a picnic and we went to Exmouth to meet up with Steve’s mum and brother. It was sunny and lovely when we got there. I wasn’t too tired after the early start as I’d had another 3 hours and Joel ran about on the sand, digging and enjoying the seaside. Izzy loved it. All the dogs were off their leads and they all ran around in giant circles.

Joel enjoyed watching us eat our picnic. He ate a few cheddar biscuits, but wouldn’t touch his sandwich or other snacks although he enjoyed drinking raspberry juice from a bottle as we were! Steve’s mum is trying slimming world too, so we had a salad as we can’t eat white bread rolls, although we did eat chocolate brownies. I guess the salad may have counteracted the brownie badness?!!

After lunch we build sandcastles and Joel knocked them down and we walked down the prom. Again, Joel wouldn’t go to sleep, I guess his extra 3 hours kept him going. He walked a long way and the fresh air helped his cold I’m sure. He was having a real snot issue though and keep swiping his nose with the back of his hand before I can get to him with a tissue, which leaves an nasty snot trail across his face and in his ear and hair! Lovely!

On Sunday he got up at 6am and wouldn’t go back to sleep until 9.30. He was stil too hot and needed more calpol. And with going back to sleep at a funny hour we didn’t make it to church and Steve’s other brothers work at a special needs centre where they have a soft play area, so they let us go there for an hour and Joel had it to himself! We played in the sensory room, got giant toys out and he had a great morning. And again, no afternoon nap! What’s going on?

After a roast dinner we set off at 2pm. I was due to play at church for the evening service (partly why I didn’t mind missing the morning service) and we made it back with 30 minutes to spare! And when I got back at 8pm? He was still up. His routine is so out of whack it’s untrue. That’s what a weekend away does for us. 😦

And last night he was up at 1am, and 3.30am. He has begun coughing a lot again, whether his cold has got on his chest I’m not sure, but Steve hadn’t given him his inhaler. The only silver lining is that he slept in till after 8 this morning but I’ve only just managed to get dressed at 11.00 as I’ve been tired and trying to get dinner in the slow cooker and he’s not in the mood for much today. He did have such a busy weekend and he seems to want to lie on the sofa today. We’ll have to take the dog out for a trot around shortly so maybe that will perk him up.

And work is due to be busy and stressy again tomorrow so I’m not looking forward to that.

I’m just glad I can have a quiet day today and gather myself together ready for the week. We need a big shop doing and we’re out of most things. I can make a cauliflower cheese for lunch with ham, and then our cupboards are bare!

Right, I can see a snot trail attacking Joel’s face so hot flannel here we come. It’s the only thing to clean him up!

Off the Wagon

This week, I’m feeling a bit like the weather. Bleurgh.

Work is stressy. I’m not sleeping well again and to top it all off, Aunt Flo woke me up at 5am this morning. I tried to tiptoe to the bathroom like a mouse but Joel was obviously awake as well and shouted ‘Mama’ so I popped in to see him and his nappy smelt funny.

I checked him, and he hadn’t pooped, but it was full to bursting and smelt really strong (sorry, tmi1!) so I think he must be teething again as his urine gets very potent!!

I sat him in my bed next to a sleeping Steve and he snuggled down, and I nipped off to the loo to sort myself out.

When I got upstairs he was clambering all over Steve to try and reach his i-phone and Steve was either pretending to be asleep or actually in a very deep sleep, and I got into bed and Joel snuggled into my arms and we cuddled for an hour until Steve got up for his breakfast meeting. Neither of us slept. Steve had set 3 alarms to all of which Joel shouted ‘uh oh’ when they went off, but when he did finally get up, he brought me a cup of tea in bed which was nice, and I got up and ready whilst Joel played on the i pad.

And we walked to work in the freezing cold, and then it began to snow. Great.

And now my day is stressy still, so I’m consoling myself with a BIG bag of quavers, and a terry’s chocolate orange bar.

Bye bye diet. It was nice whilst it lasted. 😦

Work Worry

It’s been a nice few days away from work.

Although last night I couldn’t sleep. And Joel did. All night till 7am which is brilliant. I however, worried about work which was silly as I ended up being fine today. It’s just a busy time of work and I was stressing things would be bad. But they’re fine and I’m wishing I’d not woken at 1, 2.30 and 5.30 and got up at 6.30.

On Friday I lost another 1lb. Seriously, I must be the slowest dieter in the world ever. I’m anticipating a gain this week though. I’ve eaten a ruck of pancakes in preperation for Shrove Tuesday. I like mine with lemon and sugar, or orange and sugar. I tried a nutella one, but it was too sweet. I sometimes like syrup. Steve likes maple syrup and lemon together. Strange boy.

Saturday we lazed about until I was climbing the walls and we went for lunch at the Darlaston Inn in Stone where Joel played afterwards in the Wacky Warehouse. He loves it and there was only one other girl in the under 5 section and her mum was in there with her too so I wasn’t too anxious. There was an episode of two older kids standing and chucking balls about outside of the nets, but after a swift telling off from me, they retreated back to the boistrous older kids area and left the toddlers in peace.

Sunday we went to church and it was a nice morning. My aunt and uncle were visiting from Blackpool and Joel taught Uncle Peter how to use an Ipad. He was so entertaining and they enjoyed his company. I did skip choir as mum had done a nice lunch and I didn’t want to rush about. It’s bad though as I’ll have to miss this coming Sunday due to a Devon visit for the in-laws.

And yesterday we had to run to town in a mad panic as I remembered at ten past nine, Joel had a doctor appointment at nine twenty five! We just about made it, then had to dash back to toddler group for 10am.

Joel had a nice toddle and play. He made a pancake face, then realised it was all sweet and tasty and would not get down from the table until it was all eaten. After a while I could tell he was struggling. He was like the little monkey caught by greed who can’t work out to let the goodies go to save his hand from the jar.

So I had to step in and hide the remainder of his pancake, to which he expressed his disappointment (‘waaah’) but he was soon distracted and I popped it in the bin. He didn’t need any more sugar thank you very much!!

In the afternoon we took a walk along the river to Sainsburys. It was rather a silly decision, considering the river was flooded, but we made it with a few walks through puddles! We got there and bought a loaf of bread, then walked back again (by this time the cold was biting) and fed all the ducks we saw along the way. Joel shouted ‘Duck’ for every bird but held onto his piece of bread to eat himself!

I went to look at boys clothes and got Joel a t-shirt, and then saw some Peppa Pig pyjamas with George on. Joel was so excited and shouted ‘George, george’ so I got them for one of his birthday presents. I’ve not head him say ‘George’ before!

There were a number of swans on the river as well, which came out of the water and looked menacingly at Joel’s bread, so we kept moving. My mission was to get the moor hens some bread before the greedy ducks and swans got it all.

And in the evening I went to a church ladies meal at a chinese buffet restaurant. Not good for the diet, but I restrained from the deep fat fried nibbly starters, and stuck to grilled meat from the seperate menu, and some boiled rice and steamed chicken and vegetables. Then I blew it all with a bowl of chocolate sauce from teh fountain. Oh well. I could have been worse.

Lets see how many pancakes I can eat tonight. I think 4!!!

Friday Feeling

I’m so glad its Friday.

Mainly because Joel has been getting up within the hour of 5am every day this week. I’ve been trying to get to bed by 10pm to compensate, but I’d love to just be able to sleep in till past 7, or even 8 at a push!! I’ll get a lie in tomorrow and Steve will get up with him. I’ve been insisting on a Saturday morning lie in for a while and I look forward to it.

It’s been a nice week. Work has been busy but that made the days go quickly. Joel has been fun to play with of an evening, although getting him up and out in the morning is getting more stressful!

I try to put his coat on him and he flops down like cooked spaghetti and shouts ‘no mama, no mama’. Once he’s in the buggy it’s fine. Noonie and thumb go in and he’s happy for the walk to nursery or my parents. In the evening, we’ve been going up to bed and he’s had a bit of play time in his room. We don’t have the space for all his toys downstairs anymore, so it’s nice for him to have some variety upstairs. Last night, we spent an hour playing with his wooden ark set. We stood the animals in line and knocked them down like dominoes. We picked out the pairs of animals and he could identify the elephant, giraffe, bear but struggled with the rhino!! He also likes making Mr and Mrs Noah interact.

He then didn’t go to sleep till 8pm. He went in his cot at 7.40 but played with Violet his Puppy Pal and a book till gone 8.

I’m starting to wonder whether he needs to lose his lunch time nap. I love his nap time! It’s a bit of peace in a busy day for me, and some days I need a nap to. (I think today will be one of them). but if he’s waking up earlier and going to sleep later I guess it’s something to consider.

We’ve not got a lot of plans this weekend. I know Steve wants to take him to a Wacky Warehouse, but I worry about other kids being too rough as Joel isn’t used to rough play. We’ll see. The main thing is that I get my lie in tomorrow!

Joel’s First Cooking

This morning Daddy had taken Joel downstairs whilst I finished getting ready (having got Joel up and dressed him first). Normally Steve is in bed until I go to work so I have to sort us both out whilst he dozes. And yes, it’s annoying.

I went down and couldn’t see Joel. The stairgate blocking the kitchen was open as was the bathroom door with the light on. I assumed Steve was in there.

Nope, he was out the front, packing the car with his film stuff. I took Joel and shut the gate, and the door (to keep the heat in) and told Steve Joel should not be wandering around the kitchen unattended.

Steve headed off and I got Joel in his coat and buggy for the walk to my parents. I popped back into the kitchen to take my antibiotic when I smelt burning.

Joel had turned the electric hobs on by turning the dials, and an empty saucepan was beginning to smoke. I turned them all off and opened the back door to try and get rid of the smoke.

I rang Steve all angry to say what had happened. His response? ‘Thanks for updating me with that funny Joel moment. Isn’t he cheeky’. I’m still waiting for him to realise the severity of what could have happened had I not gone back to check.


…is Joel’s new word. He likes to point at them, say ‘door’, to which we reply, ‘yes it is a door!’ and then he’s happy.
I think he’s just enjoying the novelty of being understood. Of course, when he says, ‘Mama’, and then goes into a big lot of baby babble, he still looks at me as though I ought to understand everything he’d just said.

I think he’s got more teeth coming through. He’s been gnawing on his thumbs in the back of his mouth and a bit off his food recently. He would’t eat any tea last night (roast lamb and potato bake) although he did eat a few green beans. He wouldn’t have any lunch today (cheese sandwich, although he had a bit oc cucumber). He was however tempted by a white chocolate pudding thing and a fig roll. He certainly has a sweet tooth regardless of mouth pain.

Dinner however was a huge success. It was a slimming world recipe for Chicken Parpadelle, which I served with tagliatelle instead. I could only find a mixed bag of green and normal, and although he eyed the green pasta with suspicion, after a little lick, then a little nibble he realised it was the same as regular pasta then managed to clear his plate apart from a few bits of chicken, which although they went in, soon came out again into his bib, and the sauce was all made of up hidden veg so I shall be making it again. I added smoked paprika to the sauce to make it tastier, and then some chilli salt to mine once at the table. Delicious! Pasta meals are the one that I know Joel will eat up.

I’ve not been out much today with the little dude. I’m still deaf in my right ear. I saw the dr, and he said the infection hadn’t gone down, so I’m now on different antibiotics for another week! I just want my ear to clear. He said the ear drum was bulging and I had fluid behind it. Sometimes, when Joel starts sounding a bit whingy in a higher pitch, I hear it in a tinny, harmonic which wounds like mini robots in my head. I don’t fancy going to work tomorrow so may ring up for a holiday day in the morning if they’ll let me. Being deaf at work is no fun at all.

We had a good weekend though. Saturday was spent with the morning taking a walk up to the hospital field. Joel walked all the way there, had a good run around in the grass and was highly amused by a bike rack, some steps and a railing. He just climbed, and peeked and had as much fun as the previous weekend at Splash Landings, but for free!

Sunday we went to Church and Joel was really good. I wasn’t playing, (due to the afore mentioned ear) and he just sat with me, went to dance with the other toddlers, waved a flag and happily went out to creche so I could stay and enjoy the rest of the service. I then headed off for my choir practise and left Steve to it! I got back with both of them lying on the sofa with Steve watching the tv and Joel watching the laptop. So Daddy time wasn’t so much building dens and rail tracks as Steve looking one way and Joel the other. Tch.

I also found a really good children’s worship group which teaches bible verses in song. I think it would be good for all of us, and the music is rock and funky, not saccharine either! We can listen to the songs with Joel, and take them with us to the church weekend away.

Other news, I put 1lb on last week. This ear thing has made me miserable and want to eat sweets and chocolate. Not good. I’m trying to make a better effort this week but so far I’ve already polished off a big bar of Cadbury’s chocolate.

Right, it’s time to bath Joel. He’s just invented this game where he shouts ‘un’, ‘oo’, ‘ee’ (maybe 1,2,3!) then throws himself from the arm of the sofa onto me. We’ve had one clonked heads episode, which was before I understood the rules. I think rough and tumble is better with Daddy!