If I had one Christmas wish this year, it would be for Father Christmas to kindly absent himself from my neighbourhood and give us all a nice, long break (maybe a few years) before coming back.
It’s not that I object to the annual Microbe conflab on Santa’s knee – it’s all part of the festive fun and so on. But, I swear, from November onwards, we have to evade 30-odd of the grotto-ensconced buggers on every single trip out of the house. They’re in every shop, garden centre, street fayre, school fete, market and place of interest. You’re not even safe at home. They turn up in a blinged-up motor-sleigh and knock on your door. I reckon James must have had 4 or 5 unavoidable face-offs with the jolly old duffer so far – and it has not escaped his notice that every single one of them had a different beard.
As usual he’s been confounding this year’s lot with requests for obscure animals.
And, furthermore, this business of writing him letters can bog off, too.
Just when ‘Father C’ has compiled more than enough gifts to fill a certain Micro-stocking (including such miraculously obscure items as a stuffed okapi and a stuffed tapir) I discover that a letter to Santa has been penned at school in which Mr ‘Crobe’s number one desire is, apparently, a stuffed camel. A what?? Where did that come from? For the love of god, how is an elderly bearded person supposed to keep on top of this nonsense?
I would like it on record that Mildred Hubble is the most delicious little pudding on the face of the earth. Just look at the little squidgeface…
I think Satan must be storing up a Hellbeast of a teenager for me because, right now, she’s wearing her angel pants most days and gives me very little trouble. (I may well eat my words once crawling and teething kick in, but she’s not showing signs of either yet so I’ll enjoy it while it lasts).
Mostly she just beams at everyone, like the world’s waggiest puppy in baby form. When I walk around with her strapped to my chest I witness an unusual phenomenon in which every passing face softens and breaks into a grin. I think it must take a will of steel to maintain a hard-core grump-face when a baby is gazing at you with such open delight.
Developmentally, she doesn’t seem to be in a mad hurry for anything. I have a feeling the boybot was sitting up more strongly and army shuffling by this point – but I’m afraid I may have been a bit remiss on this score. Second Child Syndrome and all that. (What is this ‘tummy time’ of which you speak?)
However she’s way ahead of the Microbe on food-related matters. A few few weeks ago we started to make some progress in getting her to take an occasional bottle of formula and she seemed to be taking to solid foods with gusto – but then our household was struck by a 3-week-long lurg-fest and she regressed back to exclusive boobage. Hopefully we can pick up where we left off…
In the meantime, her new hobby is finger-sucking. Not her thumb, but her index finger. Apparently this runs in G’s family and it seems to enable her to self settle in a way that the Microbe never could. Hooray!
One of my mum-fiends thinks I ought to train her onto a dummy instead or she might still be sucking her finger when she’s 35… (but, then again, I’m not sure it’s any of my business what she does with her index finger when she’s 35).
Right now we’re focused on limiting her screen time because she likes it just a bit too much. I’ve been playing lots of music for her instead but, such is her square-eyed zeal, she still sometimes swivels her head about, hoping to spot an accompanying screen. We save the big guns (aka Youtube nursery rhymes) for those times in the evening when it’s grizzle o’clock and we need to put her down for a few mins to cook/eat/read a bedtime story.
On the topic of stories, I think the boybot’s reading has improved quite a bit since he started school. Amazing really, when you consider the ungodly dullness of the books he’s exposed to – to call them basic would be an understatement, but I assume there is method in it. He’s still an untrustworthy devil as he’s really good at memorising books word-for-word and then appearing to read them at breakneck speed – or just guessing, based on the pictures. However some of his more recent school books have a page at the end where they have to re-read all of the words in random order, which tests whether they’re really reading or not, and he seems to be breezing through these.
I’ll be interested to see how he gets on in the school hols if I give him an unfamiliar book to read each day. I think the ones we’ve got at home are a bit more challenging, too. Lately G and I have started leaving him with a book to ‘read to himself’ after his bedtime stories. Often he chooses a picture book that he already knows by heart, but occasionally he chooses an early reader book and actually seems to read. He has no idea that he is standing on the precipice of a lifetime of joy.
Well I might leave it at that for now – but I expect further rambles will ensue… I have a veritable stockpile of wittering to catch up on.