Saturday, 24 July 2010

A Jumper

Originally uploaded by juliaclare123

Finished the other day, it's a bit small at the moment, thanks to the rapidly growing baby, but I'm pleased with it, and I'll be able to wear it next winter, and many after that, I'm sure.

Potty training, take 2

Today her ladyship has brought the potty over twice and demanded her nappy be removed, before sitting on the potty. Nothing else happened, but it's a start.

I am so relieved. She seems to be doing this mostly for her daddy, as mummy has been in bed most of the afternoon. I am so tired, and I feel completely drained. The baby is stretching my tummy to a very painful extent at the moment, and I've gone back to feeling sick. Hurrah. Oh well, only 146 days to go.

Monday, 19 July 2010


Sad things:

My great-aunt died last Thursday. My parents were in Paris with my grandmother until this afternoon, so they only found out today, and rung me just now. She was very old, and in very poor shape. I think she was coming up for 90, and she'd had a fall which had lead to her developing pneumonia, and she just quietly slipped away. Very peaceful. She came to our wedding and insisted on being brought down to see the disco, as she'd never been to one, and wanted to see what they were like. She also met Lucy and thought she was a wonderful child, so clearly there was nothing wrong with her brain. The best thing is that Dad managed to overcome his difficulties with her, and was friends with her at the end. We'd been to visit her earlier in the year; I'm very glad we made the trip up to Cheltenham. RIP Great Aunt Heather.

My Dad also told me that my grandmother might "pop off" at any time. She's got diabetes, and doesn't look after herself properly. It's well within the bounds of probability that she will slip into a diabetic coma during her sleep and not make it through. I'm glad we're going to see her in August, even though it will be a bit stressful. She's very keen on Lucy, which is a good thing of course, but Lucy is not very keen on strangers at the moment. Oh well, I'm sure she'll behave herself, and if it gets too awful, we'll run away and hide in Paris.

Happy thing:

Our new Nursery is all signed off, and the building will go ahead, Michael Gove or no Michael Gove. Hurrah. Although, of course, my colleagues Gaby and Lisa are very negative and don't seem to feel that it is actually a good thing to get rid of an admittedly big but unpleasant, disgusting and unhygenic space. NNNNNNNNNNGGGGGHHHHH

Sunday, 18 July 2010

Does pink stink?

I like pink. I used to wear it a lot (none of my pink clothes fit any more :( ), I knit with it a lot and I put Lucy in it a lot of the time. She also has green clothes, blue clothes, jeans, trousers, "boys"' teeshirts and is currently wearing a green and white teeshirt and jeans. She doesn't have many pink toys, except for her baby pushchair and some blocks that my parents got her for Christmas that we don't use as she has two big bags of blocks, and the pink ones should really stay at their house.

I can see where these people are coming from - when I go to the Early Learning Centre, it's quite sickening how much stuff is pushed at little girls that emphasises good behaviour and low expectations (especially slogan teeshirts aimed at older children - My Daddy thinks I'm a princess, Future WAG, Playboy branded things for children for God's sake) but at the same time, we don't have to buy it for them. Lucy is not an independent consumer, and she may want things, but I don't have to buy them for her. I can buy her things I like, things I think she might like later on, but they don't have to be pink cash registers and bikinis and princess dresses.

More positive role models for girls would be a good thing, I understand this; after all I do teach young girls, and it's sobering to find out how many idolise Barbies, but it's also heartening to see them playing football, watching Ben 10, loving Thomas the Tank Engine and other "boys" things. Children have limited horizons - 10 is old to a 5 year old, 15 is ancient to a 10 year old and you may as well be dead as be 25 when you're 17 - and it's our job as adults to help them learn to make good decisions. We should be teaching them to ignore marketing ploys and to see through the surface to the substance.

So, on the whole, pink doesn't stink, but the stuff that is painted bright pink to appeal to little girls does, and we should watch out for it. But overanalysing and obsessing over our culture is rapidly turning into a disease and stops us noticing the big stuff. The marketing of things at children is far, far too widespread and dangerous, and obsessing whether pink things should be for girls misses the point.

So there.

Thursday, 15 July 2010

Tedious Work Induced Rant

I don't feel like a proper member of staff. My little class aren't welcome at whole school events; one of our colleagues is leaving and we are having a whole school party for everyone except Afternoon Nursery and we are specifically left out of other events such as author visits and explanatory trips to the new "outdoor classroom" (garden). Also, my colleagues have all had 3 or 4 observations this year, I have had none. I know I'm part-time, but I'm still a professional, and I need to be treated as one. I'm getting more and more keen on the idea of looking for another job while I'm on maternity leave and buggering off, instead of coming back. I'd like to do another year part-time, and I'd like to be around for the new baby as much as I've been for Lucy, but I can't spend another year standing still and getting more and more frustrated. I've even tried saying something, but what's the bloody point? It doesn't make a blind bit of difference.

In return, I am absenting myself from whole school events - I'm not at a birthday party this evening, I may not go to the colleague who is leaving's do, I am not going to be in the staff room unless specifically asked. If they aren't going to meet me half way, I'm not going to take part. I'm very, very good at absenting myself, and I have the perfect excuse in Lucy and the whole "being pregnant" thing. It's the holidays soon. I cannot wait. I will still see Dan and Anna and Gaby, but I can't be bothered with official things. Anna will be my line manager next year, I bet I can get her to come and observe me once before I go off.

In happier work related news, they seem to have taken on board my suggestion that it's stupid to fill up the Morning Nursery and then the Afternoon, and we should both have 10/11 children in our classes by half term. Good. If I have 3 again in September, I'm resigning on the spot.

Still no news on our new building.

Wednesday, 14 July 2010

Twit Twoo

I got my owl print for Lucy's new big girl's room. Hurrah.

We are getting our loft converted into 2 children's rooms and a little shower room. The work hasn't started yet, although we should be getting the plans back in a few weeks time, and then a start date, so it should be done by the time the new baby arrives. I don't want Lulu being moved out of her room so that we can move the new one in, I want her to have a special big girl's room before the annoying sibling arrives. Also, we'd like her go into a proper bed, and doing that while we have a new born could be very tiring.

New baby is still growing, I have a hospital appointment tomorrow morning, so today, we are living the dream by going to Sainsbury's in Chiswick.

It looks as if we aren't going to be getting our new Nursery at school. There are no words to describe my feelings about Michael Gove.

Tuesday, 13 July 2010

Potty training

We are attempting to potty train Lucy. She has a potty which she regards as a toy, so spends a lot of time with it on her head or using it as a megaphone. She's sat on it, but not managed to do a wee in it yet. We had a little accident the other day; Mum and I were inside and Lucy was outside in the paddling pool and freely roaming around the garden, naked. She came over to me and said "Bo", so I asked her if she needed a poo, she said "Na", and wandered off. 2 minutes later, a very embarrassed and ashamed Lucy came over. I cleaned her up and sloshed dettol over the garden and the paddling pool, and we had another go at sitting on the potty.

I think she's not ready yet; Elsie, her best friend, is ready, as she can tell me when she needs the potty, and sits on it without a fuss. Oh well, Lucy will learn that she needs two different words, one for yes and one for no, and saying the same word for both, is confusing.

Saturday, 10 July 2010


So much for updating more frequently.

It's been a busy week. On Sunday, we drove across London to Greenwich (miles and miles) for a birthday party, which was fun, but exhausting, particularly as the birthday girl is only 1 and her big sister can be somewhat of a menace, especially when over-excited, full of cake and arguing with her best friend. Lucy was very well behaved, on the other hand, no tantrums, no yelling, lots of eating of vegetables, and a joy to be around. For a change. She really likes houmous and cucumber, which is nice and cheap, so I'm pleased. So middle class.

We had our school trip on Thursday. It was fine. We took 21 3 and 4 year olds to the Bunny Park, and we brought 21 back, no one wet themselves, no one cried, it wasn't too hot, but it didn't rain, and everyone enjoyed themselves, including the mums. I was really pleased with the mums, they all mucked in and got on with it, even the one I was a bit concerned about. She can be difficult, particularly around Christmas. She is a very devout Muslim, and went off for a little pray, but didn't let that stop her pushing the children on the swings and on the seesaw, so everything worked out for the best. Good.

Last night, I went out to a Greek restaurant with four of the girls that Simon was at school with, so people who have known each other since birth practically. I've only been around for the past 6 years, but they are now my friends too, and it was really nice to be invited. Shame I only managed my starter before having to go and be sick, and then having to go home, but it was fun before that. It was a combination of the heat and the baby, and I'm tired of this constant nausea. I'm feeling a bit queasy now too. It's rubbish.

I've have a really nice day - I went across London to Bethnal Green to the Bust Craftacular, which was OK. Some of the things were a bit naff to be honest, and the sewing/knitting things were all things I could make myself without thinking twice, so a bit disappointing. I looked at some lovely ceramics, but the women on the stall were super unfriendly, so sod 'em, I'll get some interesting things from a charity shop instead. I bought some teatowels from, and I really want an owl print, but I can't make their website work. I hope they'll answer their email on Monday and I can get it sorted then.

It was a bit too hot on the tube. I kept on spraying myself with 33 year old Evian, the stuff my mum bought to use when she was in labour with me, and I drank about a bucket of water, so it wasn't so bad in the end.

My parents should be here any minute, bringing my husband and baby back, hurrah.

Saturday, 3 July 2010

All things considered

it's been a pretty good day. We went to see Simon in Southall in the morning, and Lucy ran around in the sunshine with the cubs, having a marvellous time in and out of the tent and generally being a happy toddler.

When we got home, we had a visit from friends of ours borrowing the camera, and they brought cake, which was kind, so we sat in the sunshine and ate cake, and watched Lucy jumping in and out of the paddling pool. They don't have kids, so I think she was a bit of an eye-opener for them. The first time they came to visit her, Jamie sat and stroked her head and hands, and Ben stood at the other side of the room, unable to approach in case he spilt tea on her. Funny, clumsy man.

We then went to Hobbycraft, where Lucy was excellently behaved until she decided to run out of the shop and into the carpark, fortunately not in front of a moving car, but still. Little ratbag. She also threw a tantrum in WHSmiths, when she was stopped from throwing all the cards on the floor and stamping on them, and another minor one in Boots when she was told that she had to come with Mummy and leave the very interesting necklace display with a mirror backing that she was admiring herself in. I gave in on that one, and got her godmother something from the Benefit counter which was next to the display, thus spending far more than I was intending originally. Oh well. I had to buy a "reward for good behaviour" for her in order to get her in the car. She threw her water cup out of the car on the way home, which was good of her. I'm vainly hoping that by the time she's actually two, she will have got over the tantrum phase.

My colleague Anna who was a bit junior to me and is now my line manager is also pregnant, so we will be on maternity leave at the same time. She's really happy, and it should be fun to have a friend at home too. That's what I'll miss this time around, having lots of people around. When Lucy was tiny, I had 6 friends from the NCT around and my friends Gaby and Susie with their little ones. At least I'll have Lyn and Anna to go to coffee with, and I'm going to be doing a breastfeeding course, so I'll meet some new mums from that. My friend Agnes is having a baby in August, so we'll see her, although she lives miles and miles away. I'm really looking forward to it.

I've started knitting the front of the Viv I started ages ago, and it's a really quick knit once I'm passed the ribbing, which will make it 7 jumpers and cardigans this year. Hurrah.

New home

I felt like a change. Maybe I'll update this a bit more often.

Currently, we are home alone Lucy and Mummy, as Simon is at Cub Camp in Southall. It was alright until I woke up this morning, all alone. *sob*

I've finished the knitting on my Garter Yoke Cardigan, hurrah. It just needs washing, blocking and buttons. We are going to HobbyCraft in a bit, so I will pick some nice buttons up. I don't have enough matching ones in the box.

Baby 2 is still growing away, I'm sure I felt it again last night. So relieved.