Monday, October 31, 2016

Week 3 - Monday - Turning in my Man Card?

Week 3 - Monday

The Party Low-down

The party went off quite well, and we even had time for Margaritas once Francis took his afternoon nap. We kinda needed them by then!

Francis seemed to really enjoy having so many people around and loved it when we all sang happy birthday to him…..

We felt quite glamorous with our friends snapping pictures of us from all angles, but Francis only had his eyes on one thing…

Thanks to everyone who came by and made it a very happy and memorable day. The day ended with some story reading with our friends from Auckland....

Photo credit: Michelle

Big White Porcelain Peninsula

Today was pretty breezy. Decided to stay at home and just chill after the last couple of hectic weeks, getting the house unpacked and Francis’ 1st birthday party. House is in pretty good shape now, so after our morning walk with the dogs we just chilled and played with toys. Then this afternoon was some time on his new swing, and grooming the dogs and just chilling on the deck.

As many stay at home parents will tell you, (and the majority of them being women), you never get to pee or go to the bathroom by yourself.  I’m beginning to find this out but I have an extra problem to deal with.

Our bathroom is so huge that the toilet sticks out from the wall like a big white porcelain peninsula, with baby access on all three sides.  This is leading to some precarious situations for young Francis as he likes to try and climb up and hold onto the toilet bowl, and of course give the rim a bit of a chew – if allowed.  There’s way too much perimeter for me to patrol if I’m standing there trying to pee, and of course Francis runs the risk of a pee–shower (sterile of course) if I try and bat him away as he is trying to gain access to the rim. I wonder if this is how Donald Trump feels when he thinks of the Southern Border?

Turning in my Man-Card?

So the easiest and most elegant solution to this is to do what the fairer sex does and take a seat. It’s actually quite relaxing to do that, although it does involve removing a lot more clothes than upright voiding. I should be okay as long as I remember that last vital fact, but please forgive me if you find me wandering around the town with my pants round my ankles. I’m still learning.

But the most important thing is that I have two hands free to deal with Francis should he try an assault on the rim, plus I’m facing the enemy when seated. I’m working on my death stare to see if I can stop him in his tracks. Right now all I’m getting is a very cheeky grin from him.

Halloween Monster

Halloween Horror numbers

0– poos. But 3 yesterday, and he ate well then and today, so my theory is starting to become FACT!
4 – number of years since we took our first dog Rusty to the airport to fly him to New Zealand. Ananda took him, I was way too emotional

Friday, October 28, 2016

Week 2 - Friday : Francis' First birthday

Week 2 - Friday : Francis' First birthday

This will be very short as it's late and we have lots of planning and prep still to do for Francis' birthday party tomorrow.

Most of the day was spent shopping and baking cakes, and well it was quite an easy day. Mammy came home at lunch time. At this time we decided to divide and conquer our tasks.

Finally we got around to having a wee birthday celebration and opening some presents. So much for not spoiling him huh?

He then had some help from Ananda and Sunny Dog in unwrapping his gifts....

 ... but needed no help when it came to playing with them!

 I had hoped to spend today writing out my version of his birth story, but maybe I'll get to that over the weekend.

Vital statistics from today:

4252g - Francis' birth weight (9lb 6oz)
9500g - Francis' weight on his first birthday (20.9lbs)
5248g - weight gain in first year (~11lbs)

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Week 2 - Thursday

Week 2 - Thursday

Easy Peesy Lemon Squeezy

Early start today as Franics was up with the larks. Never really knew what time they got up before now, but it was about 5:30am.

Not much to write about today as it was all smooth sailing after an early bump in the road– but a theory has developed in my mind. We’ll get to that in a minute.

One hiccup was that I was pretty stressed this morning at the thought of a repeat of yesterday, so I was a bit terse with Ananda when she gave me another list of things to do today. The longer the list got, and by long I mean when it got to item #3, I was just so full of self-pity as to how this was going to be an awful day again, and yet Ananda was demanding three things of me.  Yes three things! At least that’s how I saw it.

I guess I did a bad job of relating to Ananda how stressed I was about today, but you know after being together for about ten years I was figuring she would have worked out how to read my mind by now. Just like I can read hers… oh wait…….

Anyway, moving on, milkies at 9:38am and then asleep by 10:02am was a good start to the day of listening to Ananda’s advice.

Francis woke up about 11:45 and cleared his system, so to speak. I sent Ananda a picture of Francis’s poopy nappy as an apology (and of course I called her as well to apologise properly) – and then Francis did really well eating a variety of things for lunch – which brings me to my theory.

If I look back at the stats I record at the bottom of my blog I may find that he doesn’t eat the day before he has a poo. Maybe he is just so crammed full of spinach he can’t eat anything else? Will keep an eye on this theory and see how it pans out  (pardon the pun).

I also received some really good advice from my sister-in-law Nellie, who said if I looked at what he ate over the course of a week, and not focus on a day by day account, I would see he was doing fine. Ananda also added me to the "Baby Led Weaning" FB page, so I saw I'm not alone in this area.

After going to post Mammy’s presidential ballot  (down with the Trump) we had afternoon milkies and then Francis fell asleep sometime between 3:35 and 4:15pm. I’m vague on the time cos it was only Francis stirring in my arms that woke me at 4:15pm, so I gently laid him down in his cot, and went about my weary way.

Birthday Preparations.

The young lad has his birthday tomorrow so I’ve spent this evening doing some cake prep. We’ve decided on a vegan chocolate cake AND a more traditional christening type fruit cake. Said fruit cake recipe is steeped in family history as well as steeped in  alcohol, and tonight I had to put on the (homemade) marzipan……..

The cake with some important ingredients near-by

It's all in the planning...

...then the execution.

Et voila.

Frosting will be added later.

The fruit cake is also a tribute to my parents, both of whom are sadly no longer with us. My Mam was always a great cake maker and decorator too, and my Dad always loved his fruit cake. So although they can’t be with us anymore they are always in our thoughts and hearts.

Birthday Eve Bingo numbers

1– poos.
2 – number of stats I can think of for today

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Week 2 - Wednesday

Week 2 - Wednesday

The Honey List

With Francis’ first birthday fast approaching, Ananda left me a list of things to do today:

As you can see I got most of them done – and to be fair I did add some items myself, but it did lead to some dire consequences later on. Read on Dear Reader.

Boys Toys

Enough said really! Very helpful staff at Bunnings helping me lug the lawnmower onto my trolley and then into the car.


Despite having worked in a very high tech field (Stanford Synchrotron Radiation Lightsource – to mention just one) – I’m a bit crap  at the whole inter-webbery  thing and  normally leave that sort of thing to Ananda. So it was with trepidation that I tried to set up the internet at our new house. Hey presto, by some fluke, it worked exactly like it said on the box!  Now that’s a first.

Battles Lost and Well,  Just Lost

I alluded to this sorry tale earlier, and whereas my victories were great and satisfying in crossing off many items on The List – I did pay the price later. You see, I forgot all about my spreadsheet for Francis and applied a moving Gantt analysis to his waking time this morning. Young Francis was obviously partying hard last night as he did not get up until 7:30am, and I kinda had to wake him so he could say goodbye to Mammy. 

Anyway, since he was up about 90 minutes later than normal, I reckoned that gave me license to let his morning nap slide by 90 minutes too. Things went swimmingly, and after shopping, he took like 5 minutes to go down for his morning nap at about 11:20am. “Daddy’s nailed this” I thought.

Things started getting a little lumpy after he woke up about 2pm, and I tried to feed him. I was full of fresh naïve enthusiasm about making him some nice new foods.

1)   Pasta with a red lentil/cheese/pea and sweetcorn sauce – Battle lost
2)   Plain Pasta – Battle lost
3)   Getting “creative” and turning above sauce into soup – Battle lost
4)   Giving in and trying one of those squirty things from the forbidden drawer – Battle lost
5)   Butternut squash hummus – a sight gain in terrority for two mouthfuls – but then Battle lost
6)   Liquid gold – battle lost
7)   Water – Battle lost
8)   Rice rusk from Forbidden drawer – eaten with accompanying gansta-rap dance

The Scene of the Battle of Lunch Time (Late Lunch)

This whole slaughter took more than an hour and I was trying to be as present and as patient as possible, but in the end I just gave up. 

We did some wandering around the sodden garden, checking out the dog prints in our new veggie boxes, and hanging up some laundry for about four or five extra rinses.

Soon it was time for afternoon naps and Daddy Milkies. 

Things went from lumpy to full-on custard. 

The latter went okay, although he has now learned how to squirt milk into my face and eyes from the teat on the bottle (I though those days once Ananda’s let down stopping being like Niagara falls). Such fun for him!

Anyway, I spent from 4pm until 5:10pm trying to get him to have milkies and take an afternoon nap.  Again Battle lost. I gave up when Ananda came home from work and I handed him over so I could go and play football – lost that battle too.

We discussed my naivety when I returned from football and it seems that I need to stick to his nap at 9:30-10am in the morning and 3-3:30pm time in the afternoon – no matter what time he gets up.  Also, trying to do stuff in the morning is not worth it, Francis is much more malleable in the afternoons

So tomorrow I’ll try something different – it’s called listening to my wife!


As usual he ate his steamed spinach faster than we could get it into his hands. Can man survive on spinach alone………?

“Numbers – do you like numbers? Let’s talk numbers” :*

0 – poos.
6- the number of goals scored by Newcastle in their game this morning. Crikey.
3- the number of goals I let in in my football game
49,042 – spectators at the Newcastle game
2 – the number of spectators at my game
566-  Page views yesterday. Could I become the Justin Bieber of the Stay at Home Dad world?

* above quote from some cocaine fuelled high priced lawyer Ananda and I had a business meeting with in San Francisco – (picture Wolf of Wall Street)

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Week 2 - Tuesday

Week 2 - Tuesday

New World Order

We had a bit more success in getting Ananda out of the door and to work on time this morning. We had quite a discussion over the weekend as to how our first week in our new roles went, and to be honest both of us felt that we were doing more than we had when our roles were reversed.  Ananda still has to feed Francis through the night AND go to work the next day, and I still have most of the domestic chores to do AND look after Francis through the day.  Obviously we’re still adjusting, and we’re talking about the difficulties we each have, and trying to find solutions.

This morning went smoother, and the only thing that suffered were our two dogs. Well I say suffered, but what it meant was they went out for their walk at about 8am instead of at 5:45am.  I did this so I could spend more time in the house during Ananda’s getting ready for work, so that if Francis wakes up during mammy’s shower or whilst we are meditating I can take care of him. It worked well this morning, and the dogs did not seem that bothered, judging by the amount of sleeping they did during this time. Maybe they hate their 5:45am walks. It was funny watching them sleep with their legs crossed, though!

Food and Fasting.

Tuesday’s SPACE trip to the zoo was postponed due to inclement weather, so we all met at the St Andrew’s play centre instead.   We did take a detour to Bunnings on the way there – well it is so close. I’m still learning people’s names and which baby belongs to whom, as they are all pretty much free range once there. It was fun watching them tackle the slip-slidy ramps, and make play-doh, although for this parent it was more of a hit with me than Francis. As usual Francis was off crawling around with as many things in his hands as possible, just occasionally checking in, to make sure I was okay. Thanks son. I’m going to have to change my fasting day away from a Tuesday as I miss out on cake.  And with so many birthdays on the horizon I’d be silly not too!

 Picture credit - Dianne.

On the subject of food Franics has been having a hit and miss time with food over the weekend.  Pe-ana is now off the menu, and trying to find things for him to eat is becoming a challenge. He also tried beef for the first time as Mammy gave him a taste of her hamburger, on Monday night.  I watched with a mixture of horror/fascination, as he did his slow motion tasting of it. I think it ended up as 50-50 mix of him swallowing some and spitting the rest out.  I’m vegetarian, but I have no problem if he wants to eat meat. I’m not going to impose my views on him - (only when it comes to football teams he should support) - and will let him decide if he wants to eat it when he grows up. I was certainly relieved he did not guzzle it down and turn into a blood thirsty carnivore in front of my eyes, and attack the dogs with a knife and fork afterwards shouting “meat, meat, MEAT!”

Like Father like Son

Francis was very cranky after his nap, and I knew he was hungry. I was also cranky as well, as I was hungry too, so this afternoon felt really difficult, and I was watching the clock a lot, counting down the hours until Mammy came home. Like I said I knew he was hungry, but could I find anything to tempt and tantalise his tastes buds?

We tried rice crackers – fail; pe-ana- fail; cheese – fail, which was frankly devastating to me! I was failing in my task to keep my son nourished.

In desperation I went to the forbidden drawer (store bought baby foods) and grabbed a rice–rusk. He then proceeded to hoover two of them down and still demanded more. I knew he liked them right away as he started to do his little up and down hip-hop, gansta-rap dance. The ingredients list is not too bad i.e. I understand what all of the ingredients are, but some of those ingredients were sourced in China, which does have a poor history for the quality of some of their produce.

He was still hungry so I grabbed a corn-cracker - of course he wanted the largest bit....

Mam will probably like them as they tasted just like pop-corn!

We’re trying to make sure that Francis eats only wholesome foods, since so much manufactured food these days is filled with crap. I have some basic food rules; if I can’t pronounce it, or if I recognize it from my chemistry degree I ain’t ingesting it! But are we making a cross for ourselves to bear? Should we let Francis run amok through the McDonalds and KFC’s of the baby world – whatever that might be?

Partly I think we fallen into a trap of just giving F foods he really likes and not exploring more. It took him so long to figure our swallowing food was as much fun as just chewing it and then spitting it back out.  We were so happy we just kept feeding it to him. So now when he gets bored of these we find ourselves in a self-imposed food desert - (or should that be dessert?). So if anyone reading this has any tips, please do share. It’s an area where we know we’re not doing very well in. Pretty sure if we could get a Mr Creosote like feed into him at nighttime, he might sleep better through the night – or he might need a bucket…….. “just a wafer thin meeent”.

*Epilogue - he chowed down his steamed spinach and lentil soup tonight along with some toast, so he had some healthy food!


We bought Francis some big legos a few months back, and until recently he only wanted to knock down the towers we built for him.  Now that he’s learned how to pull them down and apart he’s moving onto learning how to stack them, and it’s really interesting watching him build one on top of another.  He also likes to place them in his empty Horlicks jar, we buy the best toys for OUR son! He’s still trying to figure out why he can’t grab them in his hand and remove them through the narrow neck. Perhaps you’ll hear more about this in the future –accompanied with a tale of how we had to go to the A&E to get the jar removed from his arm!

Today’s statistics, if you’re so inclined.

0 – poos
3 - naps, 2 for F one for G.
2.4mm - amount of rain that would have fallen on us at the zoo if we had went! 
97.6% - percentage of statistics that are made up

Friday, October 21, 2016

Day 5 Wonderfully Uneventful

Day 5 Wonderfully Uneventful

Parents were pretty tired after watching the third Presidential debate last night. Not that there was anything very Presidential about it. Trump just reminds me of, and debates like, a 4-year old, so I picked up some good tips from Hilary on how to deal with  a child last night. Might need to refer to them in three years time!

Nevertheless, I think we got Mammy out of the house by about 7:43am, with Francis and I closely following behind to do some modern day hunter-gathering at the grocery stores.  

Grocery shopping has always been one of my tasks, but because I hate queuing, you would normally find me at Pak’n Save at 7am on a Sunday morning. I thought early on a Friday morning might not be too bad, and it wasn’t, but those damned commuters did make the traffic quite bad – well for Hamilton anyway.

My other phobia about shopping is the music they play. One whiff of Phil Collins and it would all go pear shaped as I dashed for the exits. I don’t known what the proper “phobia” is when it comes to Phil Collins, but whatever it is, I have it. I have left trolley loads of goodies behind in stores before.

Anyway, to prove I had learned my lesson from Monday, I had deliberated avoided drinking more than two sips of my tea, so my bladder would not be a problem today as we had quite a trip planned. First over to Heaphy Terrace to go to Vege King, then to Pak’n Save and Countdown at Bridge Street. It’s a pity we can’t buy all the stuff we need in one store.  If anyone in Melville/Glenview knows of a Vege King type shop then please do let me know.

Apart from trying to adjust to new shop layouts, it all went very well, and the queues were not too bad.

After morning naps, we headed to have lunch with Mammy at work, although the only thing Francis would eat was cheese.  Buoyed by our purchasing success this morning we decided to go to Bunnings to get some more man shopping in and to buy some supplies so I can make the deck at the house less of a death trap to a crawling baby.  Plus I really like DIY!

Upon entering the car-park I realized that it was a bank holiday weekend as every-man and their dogs were there – well not quite literally but you know what I mean. We made good time though, until we came to the check out at the Garden Centre. It was taking an age for the two people in front of us, and since we were standing in the sun I was fearful that either Francis or I could get a sunburn on our follicly challenged skulls, so went to try our luck inside.  Good choice as they opened a check out just for us as we got there!

We both needed a nap after that, and after Francis woke about 60 minutes later I went in to get him ready for Ananda’s return. As the picture shows, obviously we both needed a little more Z time…….


As promised yesterday…. The pant song arose when changing Francis’ nappy since his Mam, sorry “Mom”,  says pants in a very cute American way.

To the tune of whatever you like….words may need changed based on gender of child:

“P is for pants and peeing in my pants.
A is for apples and ants in my pants.
N is for nuts and nuts in my pants.
T is for trousers that’s another word for pants.
S is for socks that are on under my pants.”

So Day #5 completed,  for the fact-checkers amongst you:

3 - poos – finally
3 – Grocery shops attended
3 – Loads of laundry
3 – days this weekend - yippee
1- Dog forgotten at doggy day-care  - not my job!

No blogs over the holiday weekend. I’m sure you’ll cope.

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Day 4 Tears, Tears and More Tears

Day 4 Tears, Tears and More Tears*

 Yesterday’s blog was way too long – sorry about that, so will endeavor to keep this one shorter.

I had some early morning duties settling Francis back to sleep at 4am, and then again at 4:15am! I thought we might get Mammy off to work on time, but time slid away from us again.

After Ananda’s departure, we had some guitar time and then I hopped in the shower whilst Francis happily played with his toys – i.e. empty shampoo bottles and toilet roll tubes in the bathroom. Once in our walk-in cube-like shower I did notice one possible drawback – what would I do if Francis plonked himself on the other side of the door, that, of course, opens outwards? Thankfully towards the end of the shower he did migrate to the other side, thus allowing me to escape.

We had some reading and playing time after that – then I decided to do a little bit of tidying up in the kitchen. The kitchen at our old place was pretty child friendly with all closed in cabinets. The only thing to really watch for was a hot oven door if we were baking.  In contrast this new kitchen is a child’s playground; AKA a parent’s nightmare. There’s two entrances to it, lots of nooks and crannies and the microwave space, for some reason is at adults shin height – or Francis’ head height.  We have mentioned to each other that it’s getting time to put up some gates to prevent his inquisitive mind getting the better of us.

At our old place we stored our chopping boards on top of, and to the side of, the microwave and we’ve done the same thing here.  Last night he pulled a wee small red one out from the side and it landed on his poor wee tootsies. Some short lived tears last night. You might think that he AND us would learn our lessons from that, but unfortunately no.

Anyway, I was standing right next to the microwave arranging some Tupperware to aliquot his soup from last night into, when I hear an almighty clatter and see a big wooden chopping board, bouncing on the floor. When Francis is really upset or hurt, such an incident is usually followed by about 20 seconds of silence as he stops breathing, turns bright red and then lets out a blood-curdling scream of sadness.

Today was no different. Except it was.

Because his crying and shrieking lasted for a good 20 minutes, and I was really worried after about 5 minutes that he had really hurt himself.  I didn’t see what had happened or what parts of his body, if any, the board had hit on it’s way down, and as I comforted him on the sofa, I did palpate all his major bones and limbs and  extremities to see if there was any places where he would obviously wince. There appeared to be none, but the crying went on for way longer than normal.

Maybe it was the shock, maybe it was because it was nap time, maybe it was because he was ready for Daddy Milkies, but even a couple of renditions of Slinky Malinky, would only partially stem the crying.

Food can be a great comfort to people in distress, so I applied the same logic to Francis, grabbed some liquid gold and managed to get him settled for his morning nap. I have to admit I was pretty chocked up and lumpy-in-the-throaty when he finally fell asleep in my arms. Watching your child be that upset is way worse than being that upset yourself.

Francis napped for 90 minutes, and when he woke up he was inconsolable again. So I stripped him down and examined his whole body again – yet again finding nothing.  I popped him back into his clothes and it was only when I was putting his socks on that I noticed his big toe of his left foot had a nasty swelling and bruising and the toe nail was blackening.  When I tried to touch it he winced and yelled. I got a damp cloth and an ice cube and was able to apply ice to it for about 5 minutes – but even that process seemed unbearable to him.

Ananda was coming home at lunch time again, so I called her and she came home a bit earlier. We tried to see if he would crawl, but he wouldn’t, not properly anyway, and was upset when he tried to stand.  We gave him a quick squirt of Neurofen and then discussed what to do.

We decided to have lunch and then take him to Urgent Care where we saw a very nice young Dr. By that time I think the Neurofen had kicked in and he was fairly happy to allow the Dr. to examine his tootsie. Upshot was that babies bones are so flexible at that age, that doing an X-ray to see if it was broken was not worth it, as they would not be able to do anything anyway, even if it was broken.

By the time we got home for an afternoon snack – tea and toast for Mammy and Daddy and pe-ana for Francis – he seemed much happier and the swelling was greatly reduced. I guess at that age his body is just churning out new cells at such a rate that he’ll heal real fast.

* I say Tears, but Francis has actually never-ever had tears. Is that something to worry about ?

I had planned to write out the words to the Pants song, but I'll do that tomorrow instead.

So Day #4 completed, here are the numbers for your lottery cards

No poos – Oh dear – could be a Poo-nami warning for tomorrow
1716g – the weight of the chopping board
Moving boxes emptied -2
48143km -Distance flown by one of said boxes – London- Auckland-San Bruno(Ca) – Cambridge(Ma) – Oakland (Ca)-Hamilton …… I guess I’ve got my monies worth from re-using that one!
40075 km – circumference of the earth

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Day 3 Man Shopping

Day 3 Man  Shopping

Francis apparently slept well last night – again I have to rely on a second hand account of this, despite the fact that the baby monitor – now functioning correctly again- is on my side table!

We let time slide a bit this morning and Ananda was two minutes late for work, before she had even left the house. We do need to be better organized at who does what task in the morning now that we have swapped roles.

I did achieve one thing though, and that was finishing my morning tea. Quite an achievement considering I finished yesterday morning cuppa at 4pm.  After our morning with the ladies at SPACE, I decided to balance Francis’ gender exposure by doing some more masculine stuff, so headed over to Bunnings the DIY store. 

I had practiced popping young F into the ergo at home,  in the hope that I would be practiced enough to not drop him on his head on the asphalt in the car park.  And you know what they say – practice makes perfect – or in this case makes safely bungled into the ergo. I may not be able to reverse a trailer, but boy did I draw some jealous stare from other Men as I put F in the ergo!.... hmm maybe not.

We needed to buy some light bulbs for the bathroom and a toilet roll holder. The first we achieved easily – and yes they were LEDs – the second was a bit of a  downer. Two choices of toilet roll holder – one at $16 which looked really crappy – if you pardon the pun – and the other at $60!!! What sort of toilet paper needs to go on a $60 holder. Jeez!

We had more luck in the garden centre and picked up some cucumber, tomato, butternut squash, jalpeno peppers, and basil seedlings for our garden, without getting Francis stung by any bees, or him pulling the leaves off anything.

It was about this time, after about 20 minutes of wearing Francis in the ergo that I regretted having finished my cup of tea this morning.  I also got a slight insight into what a pregnant ladies bladder goes through carry a heavy weight constantly against their bladder. My desperate need to use the bathroom was then largely overshadowed by the fact that Francis was becoming very still in the ergo – yep he was beginning to fall asleep.  Well my bathroom need was not really overshadowed, it just meant I had two pressing emergencies to deal with.

A Rookie Mistake

After paying for our goodies we headed back home in a hurry – me trying to be jovial and witty and entertain Franics with my best bon mots – and singing to try and keep him awake. But that and my bladder-filled erratic driving failed to do the job. At one traffic light I reached behind me into his car chair and he gave my finger a very limp squeeze, a bit like an American handshake.

A bead of panic-sweat appeared on my brow.  I remember many tales of woe from Ananda, saying that if he fell asleep in the car on the way home, he would never go to sleep again once you got home. Like forever- ever!

Lo and behold the wee Tyke was asleep in the back of the car when I pulled up at the  house. After dealing with aforementioned bladder emergency and cursing at the empty cup as I passed it in the kitchen,  I contemplated leaving Francis in his car, but always being one for a challenge I decided to wake him up, give him a bottle full of liquid gold – cold from the fridge – and try and get him to go back to sleep.   Oh and his nappy was wet too. 

Not withstanding these challenges, the wee little fella did go back to sleep for a couple of hours.  I have to say that Ananda and I are still holding him in our arms until he goes to sleep.  I know I hear some of you “tsk tsking”, and that we should probably by now be able to put him down in his cot when he is awake and walk away. BUT I actually really like having him go to sleep in my arms. Those moments when he is settling down and relaxing and he just looks up into your eyes with such unconditional trust and loves, are so precious to me. My heart just melts. Moments that can’t be caught on your smart phone and posted or tweeted (I use that word as if I know what that means), but images that will be forever burned in my memory.

Not Alan Titchmarsh.

During Nap Time – yes I capitalize it is as any parent will tell you it deserves to be a proper noun- I was quite productive in getting some of our moving clutter sorted in the kitchen. Ananda was on a half day today, so when she came home, and Francis was awake, we set about organizing our garden.  We popped F into his waterproof pants and hoped he would crawl around the newly mowed lawns whilst we planned where our veggie boxes would go. Alas it turns out he does not like grass very much, and as for the drizzle he did protest greatly.

We did get some stuff done…..

New Foods

Francis has finally gotten the hang of swallowing food. Previously he liked to chew and taste, then like a grand sommelier he would spit it all out.  We have noticed a change in this in the last month or so with him chowing down his spinach and pe-ana. So we decided to try adding some more foods and found today that he likes mashed potatoes, swelled up raisins from our morning kheir and some curried pumpkin soup that I made from some left over pumpkin our friend Michelle brought down for us at the weekend.  

It’s really fun watching him try new foods. He first approaches it in slow motion with one outstretched index finger (think “home phone” from ET) and gentle touched. Then, still in slow motion, he takes the food and brings it closer to his nose for a bit of a sniff, then lowers it down until it just touches his lower lip, which he has expressly pouted out for this task (think car ramp lowering on a ferry). After the slightest touch of his lip the food is then hastily removed, whilst he contemplates what to do next. Next is usually then turning the said food around in his hand and repeating the process with the other end.  If the food is rejected it’s off to the floor with it – or if accepted a more generous tasting ensues. If  he still likes it then he will want to try and eat every last bit of it on the earth, regardless of what other tasty treats we try and temp him with.

Finally in the New Foods category should go a dried up old garlic clove he found on the floor and a dog biscuit he stole from Sunny’s bowl at dinner time.

We have trained Sunny from the get-go to be messed with at eating times, and he’s been great with Francis, but do realize that from now on we should keep Francis away when they’re eating. Must do better.

Spoon Conveyor Belt and Spoon a Trois.

For foods that require a spoon as a mode of transportation to his mouth,  we used to have trouble because of his spoon obsession. But we have reversed-spoonologied him. As the food on the spoon is heading to his mouth, we grab a second spoon and offer that to him. So distracted, or overjoyed at the presence of a second spoon is he, that his jaw drops and we can shovel in his food.

This has since morphed into the Spoon Conveyor Belt. He does like to try and feed himself with the spoon, so as he is popping one spoon in his mouth (sometimes even the right end) the other is on it’s way back to him – fully loaded. He grabs that, removes the first and then fills himself up again. And so on…..

Tonight, though we had to step up our game when it came to yogurt time. We added a third spoon, so that both Ananda and I could feed him one after another whilst he still held the “spoon of distraction”. This obviously gets a bit messy but it’s heap of fun for us.

So Day #3 completed, here are the scores on the doors for anyone interested

No poos – maybe Francis ate too much cornflour gloop at SPACE yesterday.  Good job he ate a lot of raisins for breakfast
Babies falling from couch – one (not under my watch)
Tupperware drawers re-organised – one (72 assorted tubs with lids  - we need to stop buying Tupperware and I need to stop counting)
Naps 2.5 – including short car nap.
Raisins soaking in liquid gold overnight in the fridge  - about a dozen - to hopefully help with first point.