Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Bargain Bin

It's always worth riffling through the "reduced" section in supermarkets. Yesterday, I sent HID to the local establishment for milk and he came home with the following:
a packet of expensive shortbread biscuits
a Christmas tin of Cadbury's biscuits
a Christmas tin of Fox's biscuits
a box of Ferrero Rochers
all of which were in quite battered packaging, but crucially, not in the least bit battered inside, even the shortbreads.
Guess how much???
Fifteen of your finest pence each. He will be getting sent out for milk more often.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Toddler:English Dictionary

After my previous post, I'm pleased to report that things are improving and I'm able to spend more time "mothering" my Boy, as Missis feeds less often and for less time, and is even getting better at sleeping on her own for short (30 mins) periods of time. I'm hoping it's a developmental milestone and not the chest infection she currently has. So today, we finger painted on brown parcel paper (used) to make Christmas wrapping paper, and played dress up, and "watered" the plants in the garden, not that they need it. Yesterday we baked, made dens and played rough and tumble together. It's been pretty special for me, I haven't done much of this fun stuff in ages. My little boy is growing so fast, I want to remember everything he does. So here is our toddler-to-English dictionary, it's taken me a while to get to this stage, I'm usually the last one to notice the jibberish he just uttered was a string of words!

Mi-mi: my favourite; "Mummy"
Ooooo, eeets daaa: oooh, it's dark (this applies if someone switches a light off. Or on for that matter)
(shouted) BUBU!: bubbles!
boooo!: either as in peekaboo, or as in poo, stinky socks/shoes
sheeese: cheese
sheeeese: please
ishhhhh: fish
shoooow: soap
aaaah: hands, as in, wash hands
eye: ice, while pointing to his eye. Which is apparently in the back of his head.
bee bee: car horn noise
um: humph, that loveable little monster on nick jr
ba ba: peppa, as in peppa pig. This used to be "peppa". Not sure why we regressed.
AAAAH!: meaning dinasaur, monster, tiger, lion or other scary things.
ow, ow: can we go out? can I get out of my highchair/bath/cot?
pop!: popping bubbles
row row: round and round, said while spinning to make himself dizzy, or singing wheels on the bus.
mo-mo: I want more. Of the food I was having, drink I was drinking, song we were singing, game we were playing.
No: meaning no
No: meaning I'm in the mood to say no and I haven't listened. Even when you say "would you like some chocolate?"
Di-Di: digger or similar
*kissing noise*: I want my dummy
*patting the side of my head* (tired sign): I want my blanket
*waving my right hand*: sign for yes; he made this up, I'd prefer just a nod!
*pointing to my mouth while going "Eeee! Eeee!"* : I want something to eat.
*fist bashed on my chin* : please or thank you

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Things I wish I hadn't said today

That is not a toy
Cars aren't for throwing
Don't throw balls at the TV!
Hurry up, your sister is crying
Can it wait?
We have to go home now
In a minute
Mind that!
Don't stand on her!

Hoping tomorrow to replace some of these with the following:
What do you want to do?
Let's have a cuddle
Yes, I'd love to
She's asleep what shall we do now?!
Shall we go out?
Shall we dance?
Let's do a jigsaw
Can we read a book?
Let's colour!


Wednesday, November 11, 2009


I've not posted in a while. I addressed my blog/life balance and decided now that I'm driving again I'd like to get out and do more activities during the day, and slob about watching telly in the evenings!

At the beginning of last week, we had some wonderful news; my friends Faye and Liam won the competition to have their dream wedding totally paid for!!! I was over the moon, but I was pretty confident they would, as the last leg of the competition was won on votes, essentially a popularity contest, and as they are such lovely people, they have lots of lovely friends that bent over backwards promoting the cause! Thank you to all my readers who voted, you helped make it happen.

I had a busy week preparing to sell at our local NCT sale, I really wasn't sure I'd get all the ironing and labels and forms done in time with two babies around. I almost decided not to go to my cousin's virgin v party on Friday night because of it, but when I told my sister and HID, they both offered to take charge of childcare when they finished their working week so that I could finish off, and Missis fell asleep at just the right time in the sling for a few hours, so we pulled it off in the end. HID dropped it all off on the Saturday morning and I had forgotten one of the forms, but he fudged it on the spot and it was ok. We left any unsold items to be donated to charity, so it's sort of like a lucky dip now, we don't know how much we sold until the cheque arrives in the post!

I did get to the party on Friday but I wish I hadn't bothered. I didn't buy anything. I'd taken Missis along, and spent a chunk of the evening feeding her, and I was made to feel pretty uncomfortable doing so. First, repeated suggestions I should go somewhere more suitable, i.e. away from embarrassed (female only!) eyes. I worked out where she could have sent me. Her older daughter's cabin bed (up a ladder with a new baby?!), a hard dining chair next to an open back door the smokers were crowded around, actually outside in her garden somewhere with their huge dog (on a November night), the loo with the seat down, or my car parked outside the spar. I was sat on the sofa. Needless to say , I didn't move. Then cries of "Is she STILL feeding??? Isn't it BORING for you??" (no, I actually like it) and most strange of all, when Missis cried (as all babies sometimes do) actually offering to make up a bottle of formula for her. I felt so undermined. Embarrassed and small. It's so odd that something that used to be so normal and natural is now viewed as something almost shameful. And certainly weird.

On Saturday, I attended the Breastfeeding Network's annual general meeting as a breastfeeding helper-in-training. They were more relaxed about feeding in public :-) Boy was booked into the creche to treat Daddy to another day off, but the previous day he'd come back from babygroup with a gammy eye, and no doubt the creche workers would have taken one look at him and turned us away, so he stayed at home. As it happens, it was the same creche company as the one he mysteriously HATES when I attend training on Fridays, and since it's so unlike him (he loves new people & places) I've stopped taking him and he goes to my mums. Chances are, he would have refused point blank to go with the horribly familiar creche ladies anyway!

"Babes in arms" are always welcome at BFN events, but Missis is so tiny and the only one not in creche, so she was kind of the star of the show! I couldn't move for gooey ladies asking me her age. I only knew a few people so it was a great way to get chatting. I carried her in the sling, and when we made it into the lecture theatre she was sleeping, and stayed that way until the first break! The ladies behind me later remarked she was so good, they didn't even realise I HAD a baby until I started feeding her after the break! She only cried once the whole day, and no one minded at all. I'd even taken a small cushion with me so I could feed more comfortably, it was great, everyone was so supportive (as you would expect!)

Outside agencies came and delivered lectures on various topics such as the new weight charts based on breastfed babies, and how they won't solve every bf baby weight issue but they are more realistic and parent-friendly at least. We met the "star buddies" who had been providing peer support in and out of Blackpool hospital wards up to 8 weeks of age, reducing breastfeeding drop off rates from 75% to just 20% in their ladies (amazing!). The scheme had recently been reviewed, and comments had been taken from mothers and midwives, collated with photographs of nursing mums and set to music (M-people, "Proud", you know, "what have you done today to make you feel proud?") in a slide show. Well, it was unbelievably emotive, all the issues are still so raw for me with Missis being so tiny, it all happened so recently. The power of the words of thanks and praise alongside music and pictures brought many to tears. And I did feel proud. Proud to have joined such an ethical and independent organisation where I'll soon have the opportunity to help women just like me to give their baby the best start in life. Proud to be part of the Nestle Boycott, about which I'll post another time. Proud of myself for wanting to breastfeed second time around after a horrible first experience, and (so far) making a success of it.

But what touched me most was the section about breastmilk banks. Human milk is literally life saving to some premature infants who cannot digest formula and need all the antibodies they can get to survive, which are only present in breastmilk. In fact, I learned that formula is way down the line of choices of food for a prem baby, medically speaking, it goes something like this: the mother's own breastmilk, suckled from the breast, the mothers own breastmilk, fed in a different way, but freshly expressed, the mother's own breastmilk, frozen then given, donor milk, formula.

The United Kingdom Association for Milk Banking is a registered charity that supports human milk banking in the UK.

Their motto is Every Drop Counts and they believe that the provision of safe and screened donor breastmilk makes an important contribution to the care of the premature and sick infants who receive it.

They give practical support to the milk bank staff who co-ordinate the provision of donor breastmilk for premature babies and share expertise and good practice with milk banks and with breastmilk donors.

UKAMB is reliant on membership for most of its income and recently Trustees have been looking at ways to increase its sources of financial support. A special £10 per year membership fee (reduced from £25 per year) for Professional members (ie midwives, neonatal nurses, lactation consultants, neonatologists etc) was agreed at the AGM in November. However despite a concerted effort to gain new members at the BFI conference in Glasgow, only 2 new people joined.

In an attempt to attract financial support from the wider public, UKAMB has signed up to the Justgiving scheme. This enables individual supporters to raise money on behalf of the charity by attracting sponsorship for a particular event or simply by sending a donation. If the donor is a UK tax payer, the fees for the scheme are deducted from the tax that charities can claim back ie that has already been paid by the donor to the Inland Revenue.

UKAMB urges all supporters to encourage family and friends to help them raise the funds that are needed. Their support for milk banks is dependent upon more income being generated. Please go to to help UKAMB continue to ensure that Every Drop Counts.

UKAMB were being given some financial support by the company Medela, that makes breast pumps and other paraphernalia. However, Medela has recently broken the World Health Organisation (WHO) code for the prohibition of promoting bottles and teats (which would undermine breastfeeding), and so the tiny UKAMB has bravely and ethically said goodbye to a big financial ally. This bravery should be applauded and valued. I have asked HID to buy me a membership for Christmas. I hope you too will support this wonderful charity that helps women save babies lives. On the website,not only can you become a member, but you can make a one off donation, fundraise, or buy gifts or merchandise. Christmas is coming!

Labels: ,

Sunday, November 01, 2009

Halloween Celebrations II

We had a lovely day yesterday. A lovely visit to play at my cousin's house with her son, then off to a children's halloween party to consume our weight in e-numbers til tea-time. All without HID, so he could have a relaxing day out on his motorbike. I'm not sure he realises how much hard work it was sacrificing a precious weekend day when I could be resting or getting help with Boy from him.....he will when Missis is finally old enough to go more than 45 minutes without needing nursing, and I send him off with them for a few hours! Then he will know, mwahahaha!

Here is my happy helper, we've just popped our pumpkin fairy cakes in the oven for the part later!

Yes, even the batter is delectable, every last scrap mustn't be wasted.

In his pirate costume!

Boy's little friend who's party it was. "I'm a cat!" she kept saying to anyone who would listen.

Playing in the haunted house!