I want to be that mother who can stand up and say I am a strong confident mother and I know what is best for my children. We breastfeed and co sleep, We listen, We include, We eat chocolate and snot smoothies, we trampoline and grow frogs, we sling, we carry and we try and understand and work with our children without resorting to punishments, threats or coercion.

Tuesday, 23 October 2012

And the little one said...roll over, roll over

Look where we are all sleeping tonight!! A proper cosleeping family again. The way it used to be before we moved and gained an extra sleeper!

I'm really quite excited about it. I really hope we can make this work.

Bedtimes here are cuuurazy most nights. When it works its bliss. When it doesn't its bedlam.

One goes with me. Two goes with hubby. Two goes with me. One goes with hubby. Three go with me. Three go with hubby. One gets annoyed and swaps. One gets upset and swaps. One gets too tired and cries and swaps. One gets silly and swaps. One gets upset and swaps. AND its never the same children.    

I often have to feed Millie to sleep at same time as bedtime and she obviously doesn't settle if I am not there. Occasionally, she falls asleep enough before the other two come to bed so its like I only have one child (for a bit!). Also sometimes, Millie is awake and happy to be with hubby until, she isn't. Bedtime can take a long time and she's tired too!! We're all bloody tired!

When Ellie and Maia go to bed together, they feed off each other and play/fight and get hyped up. Hubby gets exasperated. I lose the plot or walk off and leave him to it. So I've been taking one and he takes the other. The problem is they both want to sleep with me most of the time. So one is always 'slightly' disappointed. No offence hubby. Ellie always wants to be with me and usually Maia is happy to be with daddy!!! I say usually because I do think Maia 'lets' Ellie be with me because Ellie makes such a fuss. Maia is really considerate of her sister that way. But that's not entirely fair for Maia.

The other night half asleep Maia lamented not sleeping with us anymore. It's been since we moved, so ten months but she is still sad about it. At nighttime peeing time, we put them both together in the other room and I know they sometimes wake up disappointed not to be next to me or hubby, which in turn makes us feel sad. Also recently, Maia has been waking and coming in to our bed around 3am anyway.

I think this could be good for all of us. Cosleeping is the last bastion for restoring connections. Connections weakened by new baby's, new classes, new house. Really it should be the first port of call.

I want it to work.
I hope it does.

I'm Excited.

Only problem is the computer, where hubby and I like to watch films in bed, late at night, is in the other room!!

Meltdowns - should subside!
Losing the Plots - Should subside!
Breastfeeding - hahaha.....

If you are thinking about co-sleeping, check out my links page for co-sleeping information to help you do it safely and comfortably
if you want to read other people's co-sleeping blogs, here is a blog carnival I was involved in

Friday, 12 October 2012

One of The Magical Stages

I never wanted to wish Millie's life away, but oh my I couldn't wait till she could sit up by herself.  This 'in arms' phase really kicked my butt (as they say).  I am not getting any younger.  My back certainly wasn't.  And neither were my other two lively needy kids!! 

3months old whilst mummy's on toilet!
I really love the idea of the Ground Touching Ceremony that many cultures have but realistically, in this insular society, Millie was surely out of my arms, and on the floor,  during that time.  As much as she was 'The Baby That Must Be Held', there were times when I was 'The Mummy That Needs To Go' and she was laid on a towel or on the sofa for a few minutes before she wailed to be picked up.  There was nothing wrong with her 'fear of mastodon attack' instinct, that's for sure!

So now that Millie is finally sitting up on her own here are a few things she can do!  It really has opened up a whole new world for both of us.: -

EC'ing on the potty

Baby Led Weaning with dog

Shower with Ellie

Bath with Maia

Sisters are doing it for themselves

If you think a 5yr old, a 4yr old and a 6month old can't play together?

Think again!!!

Did that just happen!

Did I just pee, almost at the same time, my 4yr old and my 4month old back to sleep all with practically no crying, no protesting and no boob and in less than ten minutes??!!

Millie cried for me cos I was downstairs (Don't do it often because I still feel weird leaving her, even with Maia beside her) but I managed to settle her so fast by holding her and telling her she had a nappy on and made the pss pss sound and she went back to sleep within minutes on my shoulder and whilst i was doing that, i noticed that Maia was holding her pee in and I persuaded her she would need to go to the toilet. I laid Millie down expecting her to cry cos I wasn't holding her and she stayed asleep!! I then persuaded Maia to get out of bed and walk herself. No protest or dropping on floor to be carried. She must get it now, that I can't carry her that far. (Barry usually does nighttime peeing of the older girls now.) I semi-helped her but she woke herself up enough to negotiate the bed and what have you. I gave her a little help onto the toilet and I said you jump back into bed and before I could get to her, she was already asleep!!

It's taken me longer to write this than it has to pee them!!

(Ellie didn't really stir so I didn't try her. I fully expect Millie to wake again (not just because she is a baby but she has a cold and cant breathe properly) and half expect Ellie to wet the bed, she has earache)

Either they are all coming down with something and need sleep or they are knackered and need sleep or they have been swapped by clones and need sleep.

I think everyone is sleeping where they 'need' to tonight. Barry needs sleep so he is in their bed!! The girls need cosleeping connection so they are with me. I need to finish watching this comedy before Millie wakes again!

Phew nighttime parenting! What fun!

Meltdowns - All quiet on Western front
Losing the Plot - not tonight!
Breastfeeding - strangely not needed!

Sunday, 7 October 2012

Play with me please

Get me. This year I have finally managed to organise a schoolgirl playdate for Ellie and the return date at ours AND today the  illustrious N will be in our home for Maia. I cannot tell you how utterly unbelievably excited Maia is.   She has told literally EVERY person she has met today. Not even met, just walking past them was enough for her to tell them her exciting news! We cycled to the park today. Thats a lot of people! She has talked about this girl from nursery for the last year. She was devastated when the girl moved to P1 this year but continued to adore her from afar.  I hope to G-D they don't cancel.

Now, the playdates I tried to organise for Ellie last year were pitiful. It was really hard!! I knew no one really and felt waaaay out of my depths in the making friends category but did my usual plunge in and try.  Try to be friendly and suggest the ubiquitous 'lets get a playdate organised'. The schoolgirl in me was having schpielkies.  I came up with just one which was never reciprocated. It was either me or Ellie. I blame Ellie. She eats with her fingers, never brushes her hair and last year she was deaf for a lot of it, so shouted A LOT. The others must have seen us coming because I got bupkis from my attempts. It's hard drumming up playdates. I found it hard enough making and keeping friends when I was in school, now I'm expected to help enable my daughters to do it.  Also everyone seems so busy.

As much as I think it's important to hold on to my kids I realise my kids are growing up with the same 20 or so kids for the next seven or more years so I think I need to help them, at this stage, to foster friendships. My brother has the same group of core friends he made in primary school more than 30yrs ago. Something I have always been jealous of. I think it's different for boys though.  Also it's fun for them to have playdates! I have the schoolboy playdate nailed because of my friendship before school started.   It feels important though for them to have schoolgirl playdates too. One of my hopes is they have enough confidence and self esteem to not be knocked by the whole friend making business because it fairly knocked me for six and did a paranoid number on me. 

Strangely enough I actually find it easier when the girls have friends over. They are happy and busy. That's a powerful combination