Friday, 12 December 2014

Junior turns 3

Happy birthday to our three-year old!


Junior turned 3 and we had an extended celebration for him. We had an early birthday party for him while my mother was visiting - we invited a few friends over to decorate gingerbread people. Even Juniorette got in on the action.




At three years old, Junior is talking practically nonstop. It is endlessly entertaining and fascinating to hear his stream-of-consciousness thoughts. He seamlessly mixes real life with imaginative play, to the great confusion of anyone who doesn't spend much time with him. Dinosaur - where? And it was riding a motorbike? No, you were riding a motorbike? And there was a lion???

He is also a great fan of The Octonauts, Pixar films, Wallace & Gromit, Spiderman (and Spider-Woman), The Gruffalo, and random videos on youtube. He hasn't watched much Peppa Pig recently, but he wears his Peppa wellie boots when splashing in muddy puddles. He wears his Dracula shirt and cape - from Halloween - at every chance. He believes the cape makes him fly (thank goodness he hasn't attempted it yet); he doesn't really understand who Dracula is, nor the difference between good guys and bad guys.


His natural athletic abilities continue to blossom. It is hard to contain him - he doesn't sit still and he's too fast for anyone to catch him. We don't often let him ride his scooter because he's *too* good. At least I can still walk with him while he's riding his bike (just!). He won't need the stabilisers much longer at this rate, though.

He has moved up to the preschool room at nursery, and his (OUR) next big challenge is potty-training. He gave up his binky virtually overnight when I told him that the Binky Fairy would bring him a present. He chose a yellow race car, helped me put the binkies on a windowsill, and went cold turkey the next morning when he discovered his present. He has incredible self-control, and at the same time, zero control. His tantrums are getting louder and more persistent; his stubborn streak is as strong as ever. He is funny, aggravating, determined, confident, busy, energetic, sweet, protective, and creative.

Looking forward to seeing what the next year brings!

Saturday, 6 December 2014

8 months

The big excitement this past month was having Grandma come visit.



It was all so ...normal... having my mother around for three weeks. She has spent enough time with us over the past few years that she knows our routines, our neighbourhood, our supermarket, the local buses and tube stations - and probably more back streets than I do. She has the energy to play with the children (though no one is fast enough to keep up with Junior), and she spends the rest of her time Making Things. She knit a sweater for Junior while she was here and finished the incredible robot curtains she made for the kids' room. While regular talks on the webcam are nice for keeping in touch, it is still that much more special to spend time together.

Wimbledon Library

Meanwhile, Juniorette just keeps getting more and more agile. She mastered crawling, and started to enjoy herself at the local softplay centres.




She still has a knack for sleeping in unexpected positions, as well.

Not exactly how her sleepsack was intended. Don't worry, I didn't leave her like this.

We celebrated Grandma's last day with a dance party before bedtime. Juniorette finds her big brother hilarious! Actually, we all do...


Thursday, 6 November 2014

7 months

Food, glorious food!


Juniorette was so excited to start eating solids at 26 weeks. Given my sweet tooth during pregnancy, I had convinced myself that she would be a picky eater. As it turns out, she'll eat pretty much anything we give her.

We started with purées and smooth foods like baby rice and bananas, the same things we had given Junior at the beginning. But we soon moved to a more baby-led-weaning approach of finger foods and small tastes of whatever we are eating. She has a healthy appetite, and gets quite jealous if you don't offer her anything while you're eating.

She also spends much of her day playing. With her increased mobility, Junior's toys (and our laptops) are that much more accessible...


It was unseasonably warm on Halloween, so I let her roll around on a picnic blanket in the park. She was absolutely delighted.


Sitting up, mostly unaided

Sitting up, fully unaided!

Her ability to fall asleep anywhere and in any position convinced us that she was ready to move out of the travel cot in our room, and into Junior's room.

Searching for toys under the coffee table? No, napping.

Outgrowing the travel cot


While she was perfectly happy with Junior's hand-me-down cot and the robot bumpers that my mother made for him, Grandma outdid herself with a new set of bumpers personalised with Juniorette's name.



Sweet dreams, smiley girl!

Monday, 6 October 2014

Six Months

This past month, Juniorette became mobile.



Her biggest feat was learning how to roll over. Once she mastered it, she spent most of her waking hours rolling all over the floors.


Her cradle cap - which had mostly gone away - came back, and she used her razor-sharp nails to scratch her head until it bled.



Your mat cannot contain me!

She made efforts to sit up, though she still needed support.


And she became fascinated by food, though we are waiting until 26 weeks to start feeding her solids.

I've got a highchair and a spoon - I'm ready!

But Dad, I really want your penne!

Fine, I'll just sleep here until you feed me.

Hard work for an infant!

Tuesday, 16 September 2014

Ruby Rabbit and Cousin P Come to Visit


Junior and Juniorette’s cousin P came to visit us from San Francisco, and we invited Ruby Rabbit to join us on our adventures. Ruby Rabbit lives at Junior's nursery, and has gone on holiday with the preschool families to exotic places like Japan, Turkey, and Poland. Junior and Juniorette had fun showing Ruby and P the more local sights of SW19 and central London.

At Deen City Farm, Ruby met the cows, goats, sheep, and pigs. She was sad that the rabbits were asleep so she could not talk to them.

Peppa Pig wellie boots for splashing in muddy puddles

Junior was excited to bring Ruby on the Tube to central London. We enjoyed the playground at Coram’s Fields (top tip: wonderful spot for children, right in the heart of London near the Brunswick Centre). Ruby got a bit dizzy on the roundabout.





Borough Market proved too exciting, though - the boys slept straight through it.


Junior wanted to introduce P and Ruby to the dinosaurs in Crystal Palace. Some of the dinosaurs looked like big crocodiles and turtles. On the way home, Ruby got tired so Junior carried her on his shoulders, like his Daddy does with him.






We had a picnic with some friends on Wimbledon Common. P and Ruby looked for the Wombles, but they must have been hiding. Juniorette kept Ruby company instead.



Since we enjoyed the dinosaurs in Crystal Palace, we went to the Natural History Museum to see some other ones. Sadly, we picked one of the only days all year when the dinosaur exhibit was closed. Luckily, P and Ruby were impressed with the blue whale and the elephants, while Junior liked the birds.







At home, Juniorette introduced Ruby to Flopsy Bunny. Ruby was pleased to have a cousin of her own to play with. Ruby also loved playing trains with Junior and P, but she liked story time best of all.





We hope that Ruby Rabbit can come with us the next time we visit P in San Francisco. We had a great week with her!