Archive for January, 2010

Eau de toilette.

January 29, 2010

Bea is on the loose and proving to be just as challenging as her brother. Perhaps moreso as she looks all cute and sweet and innocent, but she is sneaky, very fast and up to no good. She’s trouble and as she’s such a darling I overlook this often.

A few nights ago bubble bathtime at Applegate had just come to a close and both small children were well scrubbed, fresh smelling and squeaky clean. I’d played shark, and boat, squirt the fish, and “water stays IN the bath please Sam!”. Sam had played grab all the toys Bea wants to play with and snatch them away from his sister if she had the audacity to get to them first, and Bea had had another consternating bath time yoyo-ing between happy joy at the simple pleasure of splashing water with her tootsies and then having to back away from Sam as fast as possible. Not so easy when big brother is three times your size and you are immersed up to your waist in water.

Both children had been wrapped up all snug in towels and held up high for smiles and grins at the friends in the mirror. In Sam’s case he gets “wrapped up tight like a little green kitty cat!” and your guess is as good as mine on that one. Big snuggles were given and I soaked up in love drying them off. Dressed ready for bed Bea was then allowed to go and play in the front room with Daddy while I chased Sam the fast crazy dinosaur around his bedroom trying to persuade him that dinosaurs should wear pyjamas so they don’t get cold.

We read some bedtime stories together and to Bagpuss, multiple times, then after wishing my son “goodnight, sweet dreams” I headed to the bedroom to get changed for my night time run. Entering the room I heard a splashing coming from the bathroom. The door to the bathrooms had been left open. My heart fell through the floor when I realised Bea must have wandered in and I was trying to remember if we’d drained the tub or not. The tub stopper is having problems at the moment you see. It likes to flip back and plug shut again unless you hang a monkey wash sponge on it to weigh the lever down. Bea adores the bath and when in the bathroom will always, always attempt to climb into the bath herself. She almost falls head over heels in her efforts. I really have to watch her. So, I was absolutely imagining the nightmare scenario to match the splashing sounds was Bea flailing in the undrained bathwater on her own.

I pegged it into the bathroom and was confronted with nothing. Not a soul. The bath was empty, no Bea to be seen.

Phew.

But I could still hear mystery splashing.

Frantically on the hunt I yanked open the door to the small half bathroom and was confronted with a different story.

There was my clean and perfect darling angel child, my pure and lovely Bea, cackling and happily giggling to herself as she frenziedly dipped one of Sam’s plastic cups down into the toilet bowl, filled it right up and sucked on down the contents, dribbling it all down her front.

“BEA!!!!!!!”

The oracle speaks

January 28, 2010

Today as we were on our way home from a very nice playdate at Dori’s house Sam got angry and told me “I don’t like Mummy. I don’t like Daddy. I don’t like Baby Bea!” This little outburst came out of nowhere and I don’t think he’s ever told me that he doesn’t like me before. Baby Bea and Daddy, sure. Not me though.

“But I like you Sam” I replied. “What’s wrong, why don’t you like Mummy and Daddy and Baby Bea?”

“I don’t like Baby Bea. She is annoying me, she is making me very frustrated!” came Sam’s response. Okay, fair enough, Bea was sat back in her car seat amusing herself by blowing raspberries at her brother. Sam doesn’t find this funny at all. On the contrary, it makes him rather irate and gives him the scrunch face. We try to explain that she is just trying to communicate with him as she doesn’t know any words yet, then attempt to get Sam to help her find some other sounds, but the path we usually end up going down tends to end with Sam trying to punch his little sister and having a tantrum. Oh how I especially love driving along to that ensuing cacophony.

“And what have Mummy and Daddy done to upset you Sam? Why don’t you like us?”

“I don’t like Mummy and I don’t like Daddy. I don’t like you driving. I want to drive. You can’t drive. Soon I’ll be big enough to drive the car and I will drive.”

We then had a little to and fro funny argument about how much growing he has to do before he would be able to commandeer the driver’s seat, with me saying “lots of growing to do Sam” and Sam retorting “no, just a little bit.” He started to loosen up and giggle again, even forgetting about Baby Bea and her raspberries for a moment. I won the battle with a final “a lot!” and he fell silent for a pause.

Then a snapshot of the future came out of his mouth with a teenage scowl:

“I’m going to grow just a bit more and then I’ll be seventeen and I will drive the car, and I will hang out in the car with my friends all day and we will have fun and eat and drink in it.”

Inaugural Charlotte Running Company Trail Run 8.2 miles

January 23, 2010

At a quarter to six my alarm chirped. I was already awake waiting for it. The first thing I did was reach over to my sleeping laptop and check the race website. After a miserable and very rainy end to the week I wasn’t feeling too hopeful about the trails being open, but “The Race Is ON!” in big red letters greeted me, and so with relief and excitement I rolled out of bed, never even minding the early start or the cold chill air outside the warmth of my duvet.

I had my race day breakfast helping of Weetabix (very important stuff is Weetabix), pulled myself into my running attire all neatly laid out for me and ready to go.

Under Armour Bra, check.
Mizuno Thermo Breath tights and long sleeved top, check.
Awesome purple tartan running skirt, check.
Mizuno head wrap keep ears warm thingy, check.

With slippery muddy trails in the forecast I pulled out my latest and cleanest pair of Nike Air Max Assails. Worn maybe twice before so not terribly well broken in, but I decided given the weather that the extra grip remaining on the bottom would not go amiss today. I then bid farewell to my pretty clean shoes as they wouldn’t be looking so pristine when they returned to the house.

Trusty trail shoes, check.
Garmin Forerunner, check.

Getting up was so relaxed, even with Baby Bea awake and in the mix, I decided to take the last moments before going to collect Martha from her hotel to roll around on the floor in our living room doing some stretches. After my hip debacle the previous weekend I was nervous and wanted to put some extra effort into that area before heading out.

I picked up a patiently waiting Martha in a haze of light drizzle and off to the White Water Centre we went. Within moments Side Show Jesus appeared, as if by magic, as I was rummaging around in my boot after almost forgetting to put my race bib on. He would be doing the big boy of trails this morning, while I was tackling it’s middle sibling. There followed introductions between my friends (Martha Screw-It, Side Show Jesus; Jesus, Martha) while I completely arsed up getting my disposable timing chip onto my shoe. Trail running accomplice Ashley also then came striding over and introductions were repeated…Ashley, *cough* uh Laura, uhm Michael. Yeah.

OK Toilet stop! While Martha and I waited in the queue for the toilets Ashley apparently managed to complete a warm up mile!

We then reconvened and tried to make out what the announcer was telling us over the loud speaker. Confusion! Something about the 13 and 8.2 milers starting at the same time, get over to those flags at the trail head now. 3.8 milers would be starting 10 minutes later. So off we wandered towards the flags, not really knowing which way we were going to be descending into the trails. Cunning plan to remain at least centre of the pack for the start failed when we ended up at the back. Suddenly without a to do, as I was looking down at the ground checking out someone’s pair of Vibram Five Finger Sprints, and commenting on the crazy number of expensive car fobs attached to people’s shoelaces and wondering if those people would still be driving home afterwards, we were off!

I lost Martha and Ashley fairly instantly and took the easy jog out past the whitewater to the North trail head chatting to SSJ (Wooo big congrats on the new job mate!) before we hit the North Trail head and the easy jog turned into a snail’s pace amble. Oh how I wished I had been more forthright at the start and found the front of the pack as the snaking throng turned into a not very fun mix of apparent hikers who were observed being ever so precious and gingerly picking their way along the path instead of getting stuck into the mud, and impatient runners eager to stretch their legs and get dirty.

Mind you, I was relieved to find that the centre had bridged the stream access to the Figure 8 trail and it was now an easy gravel ford instead of the ankle plunge into icy running water that greeted me only two weeks ago.

Blimey, it felt like I was stuck behind a women’s institute meeting at this point. There was a lot of chatter when I just wanted to let loose on the trail. I checked my Garmin and balked at the 29 min mile pace reading. Ankle biting is not how I want to run on trail so I bid Jesus adieu, took advantage of my smaller frame, and started impatiently picking my way through the crowd ahead. I darted through any opening I could find, swinging around trees as I took the rougher line of attack. Now we’re cooking.

It was hard work but I made some good progress until I got stopped in my tracks by a guy with headphones on who was taking up the entire trail with his side to side wide gait. I asked him many times if I could pass and got nowhere. Frustrated, I clenched my fists and prepared to forge past. This was forgetting that I had a pressure activated water bottle in hand and so instead I squirted cold water all over his back. I was mortified for a second, but then he still didn’t react! I ended up trapped behind him trying to run at a walking pace until the trail gave me a glimpse of freedom and I took it, and never looked back.

After that passing got easier and easier and I felt good. I was worried that I was going out too strong, but I was having a great time and I felt fairly confident that if I could build up a bit of a time cushion even if I flagged later in the race, a brief rest stop and then a push on would be just fine for this eight miler.

And so it felt like I blazed into a water stop around the mile and a half mark. Bill had given me said hand held water bottle for Christmas and I had decided to test that out in this race. I was able to just take a sip or two when I needed it rather than have to try to hold on for a water stop then gulp back a cup and try not to choke (I’m really bad at water stops, and really great at spluttering). That water bottle did good and it held just enough for an eight mile trail, even when much of it went onto that guy’s back! Onwards, without hesitation, through waterstops I ran.

I ran to the sound of footsteps slopping into mud, leaves crunching along the woodland floor, the huff and puff of my hard breathing and the slosh slosh of water in my hand.

Trusting confident foot falls to carry me along the trail traversing slippery wooden bridges, over roots and branches and stones, across loose leaves hiding surprises, and through thick claggy mud and puddles, I felt terrific. The North Trail integrated into the South trail and along the way I completely missed where we then neatly veered onto the carpet trail loop. That was a pleasant surprise when I realised I was almost done with that section, when I had been thinking it was yet to come.

Somewhere just downhill from the second water stop one unfortunate runner had, I presume, taken a bad tumble and was not in good shape trying to haul herself off the trail. She was the only casualty of the day that I saw though and I raced onwards, catching up with the next group of runners I passed on the message for medical attention on the trails Chinese Whisper style. By the time I did make it to the next volunteer point myself the message from the trails had been relayed and help was already on its way.

Rejoining the South Trail I was confident knowing that next I’d traverse the Toilet Bowl Loop, and then it would be back to the South Trail before heading for the finish. I had to do a definite double take and got a big sinking feeling when I came across signage pointing both 8.2 and 13 mile racers up Goat Hill.

What? Goat Hill? That wasn’t in the deal?!

Phew. After a cracking run I was halfway up Goat Hill when the trail finally made me catch a breath and haul myself up to the top with a fast stumbling walk until I was all set to charge back down again. I took the opportunity to reflect and munch on some raisins on my way up. Goat Hill knocked my confidence somewhat. It was an unexpected hurdle and from that point on the race became much more of a mental challenge.

Mr Garmin was consistently reading about half a mile shorter than the mile markers on course by now and I rather lost trust in my local knowledge of the trails to read how much further I had and how to now pace myself to finish. It occurred to me that maybe with the heavy rain the trail had had to be switched and Goat Hill substituted for the Toilet Bowl Loop? But no. That theory was laid to rest as I waved goodbye to the South Trail once more and headed off out on that one mile loop. I was very confused, and getting tired.

I was even more befuddled when suddenly I ran past an 8 mile marker without ever having seen a 7. With the unexpected course change and Garmin being obviously inaccurate I was taken aback but trusting, and even with my knowledge of the trails screaming at me to reconsider I decided to start to try to push for the final short leg.

Yup, that final short leg must surely be the longest .2 mile ever. I hunkered down and was pushing on wondering what was going on when lo and behold another 8 mile marker popped into sight. Damn. I need to trust myself and the Garmin more! I relogged this more accurate distance in my head and even though I still knew the trails had much more than a fifth of a mile left to meander before the finish could be in sight I was still thrown off by this information. Was the finish line stealthy and hiding elsewhere?

Taking a brief disheartened walk break just before that second 8 mile marker a male runner passed me. “Come on, you going to walk the rest of the way? No harm in that, right?” I picked myself back up and hurried on.

This last stretch was grueling. Over the last mile or so there were a couple of solo runners and pairs that I kept passing with spurts but who would then recatch me and give me another target to chase.

Kudos especially to the girl in all vivid green who was vying with me for position, but I think finally got the better of me as we slipped over and down the rolling open red dirt hill before heading back into the woods to be spat out onto the gravel track and homeward. Good run girl.

Another girl in a pair of bright blue shorts seemed to elusively be skipping along the trail ahead of me. I don’t think I ever quite caught her.

I hauled myself up the last hill, trying to maintain a rhythm and not come to a screeching halt so close to the finish. I popped up through the entrance flags and with the finish line in sight, scanned for the telltale bright red stroller looking for my husband and kids. Nothing. Disheartened and about to curse, I almost faltered. Then I spotted two small roaming children wearing Sam and Bea clothes, and towering over them was Bill, grinning with camera in hand. My feet had lost time but were able to lift again. I grinned back and waved to Sammy Woo as I charged across the parking lot and through to the finish.

1:24:20

1:24:20

Sam was first to greet me as I bent over and caught my breath. “I was missing you Mummy!” he said. “I am very cold. Can we go now?”

Ashley came storming down to the finish shortly later at 1:32:00 guntime followed by Martha at 1:41:41.

Martha, Kay and Ashley

I went over to check the incoming results and almost squealed when I saw:

RESULT!

Sadly didn’t see Jesus finishing his 13 mile race as I was too distracted by jumping around to keep warm and waiting to collect my medal. Hehe. Sorry Side Show. He did great too though, I believe 2:01:08 and a personal record for him. My friends are hard core!

The race was brilliant. I had an excellent time and am really grateful to the USWC for allowing the race to go ahead despite the wet conditions. On to the next one! (Red Top Rumble 11.5 miles – February 7th)

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What a difference.

January 21, 2010

Baby Sam gets naked, does a big poop in his cot and he has a great time painting the walls with his new found art supplies. I am alerted by happy giggles and squeals.

Baby Bea gets naked (or more likely, is undressed by pesky big brother), does a big poop in her cot, and I am alerted by a terrible shrill wail and squealings. I run into her room and find her backed right into a corner, in great distress, shaking and pointing at the steaming pile of turd at the other end of her bed. I honestly thought she had really hurt herself and somehow maybe got trapped in the crib bars or something when I heard the commotion.

While we were sleeping.

January 13, 2010

Sam managed to move a chair down the hallway without either one of us hearing, take it into Bea’s bedroom, and climb into the cot to play with her. Then, Sam got undressed. Then Sam undressed Bea. The first we knew about what had been going on was when naked Sam climbed into the bed between Bill and I.

“Mummy” *kick* *kick* “Bea’s nappy is dirty. I was playing with her in her cot. I looked in her nappy and it was poop, and I smelt the noise, and I smelt that, a lot of times. I had to change her. You have to change her a lot and I was trying to change her. I had a very big morning.”

Oh gosh.

As the words registered I stopped giving my wriggling boy a hug, sat bolt upright, hauled myself out of bed and into Bea’s room. Happy, shrieking, chortling, naked Bea was in her cot bouncing around. No nappy to be seen, dirty bottom bouncing all over the sheets. By following my nose I retrieved a very full and loaded nappy discarded beneath her bed in an unruly tangle of Sam and Bea’s clothes.

Thanks Sam.

It is no secret that I am not a morning person, and this is definitely not my favourite way to wake up and start my day.

What’s in a name?

January 13, 2010

Sam has suddenly started coming out with names for many of his toys, and Bea’s. I’m finding it really quite fascinating as he seems to have absolutely no problem creating sounds to give to objects. I think it started when Bea received a rocking horse for Christmas. Sam decided that it needed a name and just like that he christened it “Gheekeya.” Really. Not “horsie” or anything obvious like that. No grand deliberation, with dead on certainty he just pulled some crazy name out of the air, and that was that. Bea’s pony is called Gheekeya. Oh yes, the owner of the horse may have something to say about this eventually, but for the moment it’s Sam’s rules!

Just after Christmas I was watching Sam happily sat on Daddy’s lap playing Spore with him in the dining room. Together they were designing the next generation of alien species to inhabit Daddy’s laptop. Sam was intently art directing the creation of an eight (green) legged, four (green) eyed, green creature. When it came time to give the new life a name, again there was no hesitation from Sam, easily plopped from his lips and a consternated Bill would then have to figure out how to spell the names Sam would come up with.

This post has been sitting on my laptop for a couple of days now as I had my head in freelance code for while and then finally succumbed to the dreaded lurgy proper. I took to my bed for the day yesterday feeling pretty rotten.

Bill took Sam to and from preschool and when he came home to spend the afternoon with super grumpy not very fun sick mum he crawled into bed beside me with his Diggers and Dumpers sticker book that he got for Christmas. He’d already done a stellar job of matching the stickers with the empty shapes on each page and now he loves to just flip through the book and visit his friends. We must have spent an hour poring over it yesterday. Sam drove me absolutely batty pointing to each digger and asking “What’s he called?”

At first I would peer at each yellow image and make a guess as to what type of construction vehicle it was, but Sam would scold me “Nooo!” until finally he elaborated and asked “What’s his NAME?!” So then we had to go through and give every single digger, dumper and fork lift a name…. “He’s Moorven! He’s called Dargee! That one’s Woolton and she’s called Mottee.”

Jargee, and names that rhyme with Jargee are a big favourite with Sam. That’s Jaar Gee, with a long a sound and a distinctive emphasis on Gee. Sam is very particular in how the syllables are said and quick to correct me if I don’t repeat it quite right. At the weekend I was absolutely stunned when Sam announced that his friend Bagpuss was now called Jargee. That stuck for a mere day before thankfully he changed his mind and yelled at me “No! That’s BAGPUSS!” when I gave in and referred to the little pink cat as Jargee, as requested. Little stinker. At least three of the sticker diggers are now called Jargee though, and many more are Dargee, Zargee, Fargee, Margee, and it goes on. There were longer names too but my slow and befuddled mummy brain can’t handle even attempting to spell those right now.

Eventually my poor fuzzy head had to get rid of the eager little boy pest and get some rest so I suggested he go show Bea his book of diggers and dumpers. That gave me a whole half hour of peace and I enjoyed listening to Sam going through and telling Bea all their names, and Bea babbling happily back to him. My children being nice and enjoying each others company, amazing.

Uhm, mainly lurgy, lurgy in my head, and some running, and a bit about Bea and Sam too.

January 10, 2010

All plans for heading out to the Whitewater Centre bright and early for a long 8 mile run went out the window this morning when I woke feeling terrible.

I’m blaming Jen.

After my run on Thursday I met Lisa and Jen for dinner and some drinks and she said she was nursing a cold then. Now I am suffering and feeling distinctly grumpy as well as snotty and horrible. Jen is a rotter!

With effort I managed to get up and make everyone waffles for breakfast, and for that moment I felt good and we had a nice family moment scoffing syrup and butter soaked deep pocket delicacies. Then I took a coffee back to the bedroom with me to sup in peace and the next thing I knew I had spent the entire morning, and into the afternoon, glued to my bed having very interesting dreams. Every so often Bill, who was no doubt equally tired and grumpy, and trying his best to entertain and placate two crazy children while I was being a lazy arse, would give me a poke and ask me exactly when I was going to go running. Guilt racked, eventually I was able to prise myself from the covers and climb into my running gear to go put my freshly acquired annual parking pass to good use.

With stuffy head and disgusting nose I didn’t quite manage the route I had intended for this weekend as I abbreviated doing the full planned trail, but I at least managed to add just over six miles to my tally. I did have to take quite a few stops to blow my nose along the way, and it was ugly out there, but at least I’m not sitting here regretting that I missed a chance of getting out and taking advantage of a moment to get out on the open trails. I am however in need of reminding exactly why I have signed up for doing an 8.2 mile trail run out there in just two weeks time. What exactly has possessed me?! The trails were pretty nice to look at, and soothing to pound today though, as the leaves were all crunchy underfoot and the water I passed by (and managed not to tumble down the hill into) frozen around the edges.

Feeling rather groggy again right now but I’m hoping that I’ll still be able to put in a showing at the hash tomorrow. The hare is laying trail around Renaissance Park so it should be a good one, and I’ve been looking forward to it for weeks. Gutless, do not let me down! Nasty cold, bugger off!

Meanwhile, the lurgy can also be blamed for the brevity of yesterday’s post. I should have had a lot more to add about the day’s events. It was a pretty rough one and Sam and I butted heads quite a lot as he went from trying to destroy one thing to the next, and paying no heed to my admonishments or pleadings to not break *insert object here* as he relentlessly went on to break said items. It wasn’t all bad though as we had a nice playdate at Jen’s house in the late afternoon and the kids enjoyed playing with Matilda and her toys, and I decompressed with some adult company.

Before that though, in the lull while Sam had been sent to his room to play in disgrace and then put himself to bed, I got some good quality Bea time in and great amusement was had out of giving her a pot of yogurt and letting her loose with a spoon to feed herself with.

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Of course, this was very quickly followed by full bathtime, and she was as equally adorable in the water getting clean as she was getting dirty.

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I woke Sam up at this point to join Bea in the tub before we went out and he was just a little thug when he bounded into the bath. Any opportunity he could get to crowd Bea and push her into the hardware, or steal the toys she was playing with, he would take. I was so exasperated with the boy, and very incredibly glad to flee the house and take him to Jen’s for the rest of the afternoon.

OK, my brain is no longer working and I’ve rather forgotten where I was going with this, so I will bid you adieu and good night.

Night night.

Bealated Christmas Post

January 9, 2010

Thank you to Granma\Mom\Fran who commented on my journal the other day. Your lovely comment reminded me of a photo I’ve been meaning to post from this Christmas, so I hope you don’t mind if I just quote you for this entry:

“I have a Christmas tale I’ve been wanting to tell you.

I came from the dining room to a very quiet living room in time to see Bea walking toward the tree.

I stood there to watch. She walked up to the tree and studied it for a moment. Then chose a spun
glass ornament. She put her hand under it and picked it up gently with an open palm, and stood
that way for a few seconds, studying it. Then, just as gently, she put it down and went back to the living room………It was a precious moment!”

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All smiles.

January 7, 2010

Sam’s first dental visit didn’t go terribly smoothly and we ended up just using it as an introductory ease in office visit and deciding to come back and try again in six months time. Six months was marked today and the difference in Sam’s attitude was astounding.

First of all I didn’t even have to convince or persuade him to visit the dentist. A week or so before Christmas he came striding up to me as I was making dinner in the kitchen and announced that he “had something to tell me. My teeth need to see a dentist tomorrow to make sure they are clean and not dirty.” Once I had reassured myself that he wasn’t saying that because his teeth were uncomfortable, I had a hard job persuading him that he had an appointment already booked for the 7th January and we should really wait until the dentist was expecting him.

Eventually the big day came and with Bill watching Bea for me, Sam and I ventured to the dentist. Sam was excellent. No fuss whatsoever. I woke him up and reminded him why we were in a hurry to get up and ready this morning, and he got excited, looked at me with wide eyes, said “oh good!” and asked if the dentist would give him a new toothbrush?!

He was a little cool as we were taken back into the large room where they have a set of padded tables laid out and there were a couple of other small children already lying down being examined but that faded when a handful of new toothbrushes were proffered and he was prompted to choose one. Sam did not hesitate or require second prompting, he grabbed the nearest one to green, it was more of a yellowy lime, and then floundered over the sink for a moment with his prize until I stepped in to help him get those toothypegs brushed. He was ever so good and stood there like an angel letting me roam the brush all around inside his mouth. The watching staff were very impressed and commented that we were doing a great job. HA! If only Sam would actually let me do that at home! I kept mum on that one though.

Sam then had some purple plaque disclosing liquid applied to his teeth with a cotton bud. I held my breath on this one, but he only complained later that “Mummy, I don’t like purple, I like green.” I also held my breath to see how badly we were doing on the teeth brushing front, but honestly, the stuff made his tongue and lips purple but his teeth looked pretty good to my eyes. The lady who checked his teeth later commented that we do need to pay more attention to brushing the back teeth, but she was quite impressed otherwise and the stain was showing minimal plaque. Phew.

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Sam got to choose a pair of sunglasses to wear and then I retreated to the back of the room so as not to be a distraction, and to to give the staff space to do their job. Sam and Bagpuss made instant friends with the lady and she talked him gently through everything she was going to do and showed him all the tools. I think Bagpuss got his teeth checked and cleaned too.

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Teeth prepped it was time for the actual dentist to step in and take a look. Dr Jamison was great with my little guy. Afterwards Sam told me that “the dentist man was very, very nice. I liked him.”

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He had a good poke around in Sam’s mouth, counted all his teeth and checked them over. Another wave of relief hit when Sam was declared cavity free and given a Spiderman sticker for being a “GREAT PATIENT!”. Hoorah! No problems for Sam. Daddy is officer in charge of teeth duty so big props to Bill on that one. Of course, while the dentist was talking to me I was nodding and trying to keep my own mouth as clenched shut as possible, embarrassed because while he was complimenting us on Sam’s dental hygiene, uhm I think my teeth are appalling and I could really use a visit to the dentist too! Wish my dental visits were as fun as Sam’s!

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Exam over, Sam got to have a little photo session with the dentist. A print out was generated and given to us to take home for the fridge. Sam really enjoyed himself, and I was ever so proud of him.

Green with…?

January 6, 2010

Busy day. I did the school run in the morning and then Bea and I met up with her little playgroup at the Nature Museum in Freedom Park. As I was running around the house getting the kids ready for their outings I was fretting that once again I was going to have to send Sam to school in inappropriate attire, or without necessary items. It seems that we are forever trying to play catchup with his clothes thanks to the weather and that pesky growing thing that he does.

Before Christmas I was charging around trying to find the boy a raincoat and wellies to wear on wet days and it seemed to take me forever to even find somewhere that sold those simple items, let alone ones that Sam would approve of wearing. Driving from big store to big store with the kids on the hunt for something specific is draining, and I can sink hours scouring Google for the perfect deal. I miss the days of being able to pop into Plymouth, or Manchester, or any real city centre and just walk from shop to shop checking out merchandise and maybe muse purchasing decisions over a cup of coffee while I’m at it. Anyway, in the hunt for the raingear I was very relieved when finally the perfect items were ordered online, arrived at our front door, and we could finally send Sam to school dressed ready for puddle action. Sam was thrilled with his green “grandad wellies” which are indeed very much just like Grandad’s and I found the most amazing raincoat that could have just been made with Sam in mind. Green, with yellow diggers. How perfect is that?

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We did almost have a moment where Sam scowled as he cast his eye over his new coat. “Hmm. No good. I need a digger with TWO scoops! Where is the digger with TWO scoops?!” He stands up and turns into a digger with two scoops to show me what he means. “One scoop at the front, and one at the back!”

Oh crikey! My heart is sinking as I recall the trouble I went to find him this coat. This green coat with diggers on it. And now he will settle for nothing less than a green coat with diggers with not one, but two scoops! Marvellous.

Then Sam stops digging and scooping and peers down at the jacket discarded grumpily on the floor. “I found one!” He’s all happy again and ready to put the coat on. I’m confused. Then I understand. There, on the front, where the patch pocket is sewn on and the pattern overlays there is indeed a digger amalgamation with two scoops! Phew! Crisis averted.

But then on to the next one. With the cold bitter weather Sam was now in need of a warm coat, hat and gloves. Bill went out on a coat hunt after work on Monday and managed to find a warm jacket that wouldn’t break the bank, but drew a blank on hats and gloves. The next day I tried to take Sam and Bea shopping in the afternoon and instead managed the frazzled mum chasing children in two different directions around the shop move, gave up and came back home.

We’d already been gently reminded by his teachers, verbally and via email, that bare hands and head were no good and I was feeling like a bad mum, dreading dropping off a gloveless, hatless Sam. Then I had a brainwave and went rooting around in Bea’s room for his old hat and gloves. Maybe, just maybe? Aunt Mary had given Sam a set of green camouflage mittens and hat when he was one. They had been far too big for him then and I’d put the mittens away, and had sewn up the hat to make it fit his little one year old head. Big sighs of relief as Sam excitedly slipped his hands into the gloves. YES! I unpicked the stitches from the hat and suddenly we had another crisis averted.

Sam tried to wear his hat and gloves throughout breakfast, though he had difficulty eating his Cheerios, as he chattered happily about how Miss Robin and Miss Colleen had said he needed gloves so that he could play with the diggers in the playground.

When we got to the classroom the first thing he did was race up to Miss Colleen and tell her that he had green gloves in his pocket. He made her help him get them out so he could show her what nice gloves he had. It was awfully sweet but I was just about cringing from embarrassment that my poor cold child had been suffering with cold fingers. Mind you, I was also terribly shocked that Sam was now so happily wearing his hat and gloves. Nothing would have persuaded him to put, and keep, those on before!

Leaving Sam modeling his mittens and barely even noticing when we left, Bea and I charged over to the Nature Museum for her playdate. That place is so miserable. Stuffed animals and poor creatures cooped up in pathetic looking exhibits. Still, it was warm and Bea had a great time running around all over the place. We met a couple of other mums and their little girls. Bea just enjoyed toddling around and she found a wooden bridge to spend her time going back and forth over. There were several other groups of mums and children wandering around. As I was watching Bea explore I noticed that whenever their little boys came walking near to Bea she would flinch and start taking quick steps backwards. One boy in particular would make her eyes widen and face turn to anguish. Curious. Then I realised that the boy who had the most effect on my little girl was wearing green. Oh Sam!