Oh my, have I really not posted anything since July?!
I hate using the whole ‘I’ve been busy running after my toddler’ excuse but that’s not too far from the truth! I actually found myself with too many ideas about this blog and not a clue about what to prioritise so the result was not posting at all.
I can’t possibly recap all that’s happened in the past 6 months but I can certainly give you a snippet.
Co-sleeping saved our life
It was just after our holiday [or during, more like it] that we completely gave up trying to get Frances to sleep in her cot. Up to that point we had made an effort to keep her in her cot at least for the first part of the night and then we would get up and bring her into our bed when she was starting crying around midnight. Failing to do that would result into getting up an average of 3 to 4 times a night to put her back to sleep.
Then, whilst on holiday, one night she fell asleep in our big bed in the hotel room, and we didn’t have the guts to transfer her into the travel cot. That night she slept beautifully, like she [and we] hadn’t done in so long. When we got home from holiday, we carried on with that arrangement and before we knew it we were fully fledged co-sleepers, and still are.
Now, I don’t want to get into the old debate about if or how co-sleeping ruins children and alters all balances in the family. It’s not that I’m in denial, not at all. It’s just that in nearly two years I have now accepted the fact that sometimes you gotta do whatever works for you, your child and your little family as a whole.
My daughter is happy. A happy and independent little 21 months old girl. She enjoys cuddles at night and we love seeing her cheeky grin first thing in the morning [even if she still doesn’t sleep past 6am on a good day]. We will get to a point where this solution is not going to suit everyone and we will find another one, like we’ve always done. End of.
Change is good
Unless it’s nappy-change and that’s still not fun! Around September time [which, like many say, is ‘the new January’] I decided to look around for a new job. I had been in my current place for 5 years, including maternity leave, and I was really in need of a fresh challenge. I had that thought in my head even before having a baby really, but for obvious reasons I stuck around. Then I wanted to make sure that F. was well settled at nursery and we didn’t have to leave work too often due to all her nursery-related bugs.
So, I started sending out my CV to a few places and one evening after work, I had a nearly 2-hour interview which was followed, the next day, by a job offer! I started the new job exactly 3 months ago, at the end of October, and I’m loving it. It’s the same remit I had before but the difference is that I am a one-person-team so all the responsibilities within the HR/Talent Development remit fall on me now. I wanted a challenge and I definitely did get one! I still work flexible hours so I can leave at 4.30pm and go pick up the little one from nursery an hour later.
Blah Blah Blah
Everyone says that, around 18 months, children have a ‘speech explosion’ [I’m pretty sure experts use a different term!] but I’d somehow missed the memo that said that the first word, and the second and the third, would be NO!
Would you like a banana / anything remotely healthy? NO
Let’s go change this stinky nappy? NO
How about we sit here and read a book / pretend to make tea / smear play-doh all over the house? NO [she may actually be up for the latter!]
Jokes aside, it felt like Frances’ vocabulary really did explode pretty much overnight. She started with the basics, Mamma and Papa, and carried on through to naming body parts, foods or names of toys. She can now put two words together, like Papa’s shoes or Mamma’s coat but she still doesn’t say her own name and refers to herself as Tata.
I only ever speak Italian to her and, whilst she speaks mostly English, she can understand everything I say to her and it’s amazing to see already that she doesn’t need any time whatsoever to elaborate that into her brain to understand what I’m saying. She just knows. Very fascinating. I’ve been told that it may take her a little longer to start talking properly because she’s learning two languages at once but I love the fact that for example now she can actually communicate her discomfort, by saying ‘itchy’ or ‘hand’ to point at something that is hurting. It has definitely made our life easier and her less frustrated as she’s now able to tell us what’s wrong.
Meet our new BFF, Peppa Pig
I am certainly part of that category of parents who swore they would NEVER put their kids in front of a TV or computer and I’m quite ashamed to admit that back in the day I also found myself feeling judgemental towards those parents who did.
Up to a month or so ago, I was kind of proud that F. wasn’t really interested in watching telly. We did try and leave the cartoons on, when we really needed a break, but she just wasn’t interested and I was happy with that.
Then during the Christmas holidays, we found ourselves stuck at home for a few days as the weather was so dreadful that it would have been crazy to go out plus F. had a bad cough too. We had a Peppa Pig’s CD and book which she loved and we were listening to it time and time again for weeks. So we just pulled an episode of Peppa Pig up on Netflix and we all watched it snuggled up on the couch and it was so lovely and probably the longest break we ever had all together at home.
Things have got out of hand a little recently as she’s asking for Pig constantly. She watches it before nursery in the morning and when she gets home [and we take turns to sit next to her]. I stressed about that initially but then thought of all the other activities that we do with her during weekends [playgrounds, aquarium, baby orchestra, etc..] and all the quality time that we have as a family.
During the week she spends 8 hours every day at nursery playing, reading, singing, running so if she wants to watch her little friend Peppa Pig and her colourful family I’m not going to stress about it any longer and I’m just going to join her on the couch and enjoy a break that we both need after a long day.
So, here I am! It’s good to be back.