Eli at 11 months

It’s hard to believe that Eli is only one month away from his first birthday. My baby is moving steadily towards toddlerdom – at a coffee meetup in a local café he was not at all content to sit on my lap or in the high chair, he wanted to be down on the floor exploring. I really hope he learns how to walk soon – crawling on café floors makes me feel somewhat queasy but currently it’s that or a lot of screaming sadly. Handily this particular café is in an old church and has the space (and general tolerance of babies and small children) to allow him some freedom but my quiet coffees with friends are certainly going to be a thing of the past soon.

So, what is Eli like at 11 months?

  • Weight: 19lb 2oz
  • Length: 75cm
  • Clothing Size: 6-9 months
  • Teeth: 2 bottom central incisors and top left central incisor (this one only came through today)
  • Mobility: crawling, cruising, able to stand by himself but is generally too cautious to do it and sits down without support, can walk holding onto 1 hand
  • Communication: babbles and coos, screeches if he feels ignored, says something that sounds like ‘wow’ when he’s looking at something interesting (e.g. the cats), makes a ‘heh, heh, heh’ sound if I ask him if he wants milk and he’s hungry, waves sometimes, gives high 5s if asked and he wants to, holds his arms out for cuddles, responds to his name and has started stopping what he’s doing if you tell him ‘no’
  • Sleep: he just cut a new tooth so it’s been a bit lacking recently, can now put him to bed in the evening and get an hour or more before needing to settle him again
  • Playing: likes cars and balls, can make either go around the ramp on his toy garage, loves rolling a ball between himself and another person
  • Eating: generally only interested in feeding himself, loves most food especially peas, throws food on the floor or onto the table when he’s done
  • Personality: easy going, likes cuddles and being around other people, will happily pootle about the lounge playing with his toys, when he’s tired or hungry he crawls up to one of his grown-ups and head butts their shins until he gets a cuddle

All in all he is a gorgeous ball of scrummy cuddles – I can’t wait to see what kind of toddler he’ll be.

Summer fun with the cousins

Sunday was a fun day at Grandma’s – all the cousins (with Tilly missing) had a great time. Lex and his same age step-cousin T discovered they both are big Lego Ninjago fans – all the better to break the ice when you haven’t seen each other for a year. A game of boules kept the boys entertained in the garden, complete with a measuring tape to check distances and action replay on the camcorder (although they never figured out if T’s ball brushed or not). Finally a game of football in the park and a few runs around the obstacle course completed the day. Lex had a brilliant time but was so tired he was sobbing through most of the bedtime routine. Eli was ok when he was with me, sadly summer events (and lots of people who would like a cuddle with him) and ‘stranger’ and separation anxiety have arrived hand in hand at the same time.

Today SIL and the local cousins came to visit for the afternoon. A trip to ELC after our family dentist appointment yielded a new paddling pool with a shaded area, sprayer and slide which (after I finally worked out how to get the air bed inflater to work) wasn’t too bad to inflate and fill. This, plus the water play table and SIL’s paddling pool enabled us to sit and watch whilst the kids had a great time.

Well, the big kids at least. Eli clearly isn’t feeling 100% and was not impressed by the padding pool, being wet, the grass – pretty much everything. He cheered up at points but really just wanted to have an afternoon of cuddles poor dot. Currently he is in bed but waking up every half-hour or so needing another feed to settle him. The air-con is on so he won’t be too hot at least.

The only hope now is that this won’t be the single decent week during the summer holidays – looks like it’ll change by the weekend sadly.

Now, off to settle the baby once more.

Poorly boy (yet again)

I’ve just dosed Eli with painkillers just as I did last night when nothing else would settle him. As usual I have no idea what is unsettling him – teeth/cold/upset stomach or all of the above?

I just hope it settles soon – after the screaming at midnight last night I’m even more exhausted than usual.

Beginnings and ends – school year 2011/2012

Today was the last day of the 2011/2012 school year. Lex, Eli and I enjoyed the school summer picnic out on the field and took a leisurely stroll home after lunch. Lex then went around to have a water fight with friends who live around the corner.

I think he is relieved that school is finished for summer – the poor kid has a cough that he just can’t shift and is constantly shattered. We’ve bought him a children’s multivitimin to see if we can help him feel better. If the cough doesn’t clear up in a few days I think I’ll be taking him to the doctor just to check what’s up.

Here is Lex the year before – he’s grown up so much since the start of reception!

Today was also Tilly’s last day of nursery. She started in the baby room just before she turned 11 months old (September 2008) and is finishing (after moving through each of their four rooms) at 4 years 9 months so she’s been there for almost 4 years! I’m really sad that she’s finished as we’ve been really happy with the nursery and will miss it. Eli is unlikely to ever attend there as it will probably be much easier to send him to the pre-school attached to the children’s centre next to the kids’ school. We gave them a thank you card and two boxes of chocolates – I’ll take Tilly back on her first day of school so that she can show everybody her school uniform.

Finally we have Eli at the start and end of the school year – it’s hard to believe that this time last year I was very pregnant and still 5 weeks away from meeting my gorgeous little boy.

So now we have 6 weeks of no 7am alarms or nursery runs (in fact no more nursery runs at all!) and we start it with family dentist day tomorrow…

We may yet have a summer

OK, so actually I doubt it but today was nice! Tilly is at the coast with my Mum in order to attend a cousin’s Christening and so it is just my boys and me at home. Much as I love my daughter, she has a raging case of middle-child syndrome at the moment and it has been quite quiet and conflict free at home – I know she’ll be loving the 1-to-1 time with my Mum too.

Lex, Eli and I had a lovely afternoon at a friend of mine’s house – there were a gaggle of kids 0-13 years and enough young boys to keep even my socially awkward lad entertained. I was able to sit and chat whilst cuddling Eli and the food was yum. After lunch we took the kids to the park, definitely a good day.

Tomorrow we get to see R’s step-brother and his family and they get to meet Eli – Lex normally gets on quite well with his step-cousin so it should be another good day. Only having to keep an eye on one child (Eli is easy to keep near me) should reduce the stress I normally suffer at MIL’s house – my two big kids do seem to bounce off the walls there in a fairly hideous fashion!

Fingers crossed I may even have a lie-in tomorrow – no squabbling, or even chatting nicely, siblings at 6.00am would be a relief – I am very tired.

School reports 2012

Lex now has his Year 1 school report and it was lovely (mainly) to read. He is achieving above expectations generally – 2c across the board for literacy, numeracy and science. For individual subjects the lowest he achieved was a 1b with 2c for history and geography. He passed the Year 1 phonics check (which he had already told me) and so academically there were no issues.

Socially though, sigh, a bit of a different story. He’s a had a tough year – he plays with a group of boys led by one of his classmates. Lex is teased, told he’s not in the gang, they run away from him and generally can be quite mean (and I thought these sort of actions would be something I’d have to deal with girls not boys!). They have basically been successfully pushing all of Lex’s buttons and he has subsequently been lashing out on the playground. It culminated in him hitting and kicking the ringleader yesterday which, unsurprisingly led to Lex getting into some trouble. This morning I spoke to his teacher and she had no idea – which since it happens on the playground and Lex hasn’t been talking about it is not unexpected. She had only seen Lex’s angry reaction and he had only ever told her it happened because he was angry – he is a loyal friend after all poor kid. Since she’ll be teaching him next year I am hopeful that she will be able to monitor this situation now, and we only have 3 school days left until summer so yay, and maybe Lex won’t be so sad in the playground next year, fingers crossed.

PTA Summer Fete 2012

The annual summer fete did seem for a moment that it may be a victim of the soggy summer we’re suffering this year but no – we were spared a soaking and had a great day. I wasn’t sure if I was going to be able to help much this year as it seemed that Eli would be too unpredictable to make it possible for me to sit on a stall all day, however, both Mum and I ended up helping on the cake stall and it went really well. We’ve already put in our request for that assignment next year as it was a lovely stall to work on – not too busy, no silly games to administer and cake! Since we were working the big kids had a fab time running wild – Lex with friends from school and Tilly with the policeman who was allowing kids to investigate his car.

Tilly spent at least 2 hours chatting to the policeman – when there were no other kids interested in sitting in the car she would sit in the passenger seat but if anyone else wanted a go she happily popped in the back. I have absolutely no idea what she managed to say to him over that length of time but he was quite chilled out and patient with her. Towards the end of the day she came and bought him a cake and then sat watching him while he ate it – poor guy. One of the few times she spent time out of the car was when she had to wait for her turn on the pony rides.

The horse riding was, as usual a massive hit with Tilly – our tentative plan for her birthday is to buy lessons for her in lieu of toys (since she has plenty!). Hopefully, between parents and grandparents we should be able to buy enough lessons for her to have a decent chance to begin learning how to ride.

Tilly’s third favourite part of the fete was the face painting – she is so different from Lex in that regard, he has never enjoyed having his face painted, she loves it.

Now Lex has been at school for almost 2 years he is completely comfortable running off with various friends around the field. We barely saw him during the day except when he wanted food, drink or cash. By the end he had headed off with his nearly-twin (same name, same birthday) to play at his house adjacent to the school. I am pleased that he is so happy at school and with his friends – there are issues in the playground but he’s not without people who enjoy his company.

Eli was obviously too small to get much out of the day but was entertained by the people moving around. Mum and I were able to swap him between us when needed and it was definitely easier than it likely to be next year when he is running around.

Anyway, I didn’t see much more of the fete than our little corner but it all seemed to go well. Our stall made over £100, which, considering we were mainly selling 30p cakes is quite impressive. We were quite impressed by the quality of the home made cakes provided for the stall – some very talented bakers amongst the parents. I decided that double chocolate rice crispie cakes were the way to go – I think I did ok, all 24 sold.

Somewhat rested

Well Eli’s illness/developmental spurt?/teething? was tough. A few days of very little sleep for me due to lots of nightwaking by the boy had me exhausted by last Friday. At that point he was the world’s saddest baby, not feverish but covered in a viral rash, not feeding or settled. Of course when I finally decided that maybe a visit to the doctor would be sensible he metamorphosed into a giggling, cooing (rashy) charmer. Last night he slept through – at least 7 hours – I don’t expect it to happen again soon but it was nice! Picture is of my poor rash covered monkey.

Poorly baby

It could be a long night with a feverish baby asleep on my chest. Eli woke up from his afternoon nap a bit warm and unhappy and is now calpoled up and hopefully about to sleep for a bit. Since Wednesdays are baby group I am hoping that he’ll perk up a bit before tomorrow afternoon. At least we’ll have a quiet morning with Lex at school and hurricane Tilly at the zoo. I wonder if this means we’ll be seeing a new tooth soon?

Our little bit of the Olympics


We got up very early this morning in order to be able to go into town to see the Olympic torch relay. Unsurprisingly, Lex was already awake but neither Tilly nor Eli was. Eli managed to avoid waking up – despite the blinds and curtains opening plus the usual household noise – until we moved him and took him out of his sleeping bag. Funnily enough he wasn’t too bothered by the whole experience.

The plan was to buy breakfast in town so off we went. Now, I had this idea that some people may turn out to watch with us but was not entirely prepared for the busy roads, queue to get into the car park and people already lining the roads. We found some friends and the kids squeezed in with them. Conveniently we were located by a bakery and so sausage and bacon butties were purchased (with a bit of foresight about what would happen once the event was over).

Then we waited and waited and waited a bit longer… Policemen came past, various logoed vans came past and we waited. Bigger logoed vans/buses passed us, everyone got very excited and then they told us it would be another 5 or 6 minutes and we waited.

Finally the torch arrived and then a few minutes later it was gone. Oh well, at least we went and the kids can say ‘we were there’.