Thursday, August 28, 2008

Saturday, August 23, 2008

ThingTwo's big day

ThingTwo's coming on leaps and bounds (or, rather, sits and wobbles). She'll turn six months on Tuesday, and today we started the weaning process and gave her solid food for the first time. As with ThingOne we're planning to go the BLW route (which I gather is a cricketing term).

Here's a short video of what we were up to today...

(NB If you're reading this on Facebook I suspect this will just be confusing since I've noticed videos often don't turn up there. In case you're interested this is just an RSS feed from our blog, and the videos tend to only be at the website.)

Moose Man, Charlie and Lola

We were in St Leonard’s on Sea last weekend visiting friends, Ian and Sarah. ThingTwo sat up on her own for the first time before we left on the Friday morning, which was quite exciting. And ThingOne had a “Babyccino” in Costa Coffee in Bluewater where we stopped off on the way down. This made her feel very grown up. I told her it was a ThingOneccino, since I didn’t think she’d appreciate the baby part of the name.

Our friends have a one year old girl, so they were interested in seeing what ThingOne was up to, and we were keen to see how ThingOne would cope with a having baby crawling round the house and interfering with things. ThingOne was a mixture of delightful and grumpy, and the latter became quite hard to cope with. She’s so over tired all the time. We wonder if she’s having a growth spurt. It can be like having a miserable teenager in the house, but one who doesn’t go to their room for hours on end. Anne and I end up feeling guilty for getting frustrated with her, because she’s not really that badly behaved, mainly just tired and grumpy. But when she’s like that she seems to want to fight us on everything.

As I say though, she was very nice for much of the weekend, and still insists on calling our friend Ian “Moose Man” due to a misunderstanding a year or so ago when I was showing her a picture of a moose in a photo in which Ian happened to be also. It’s not a nickname we’ve discouraged particularly, so I hope Ian (Moose Man) doesn’t mind.

As well as being keen on Mr Men at the moment (Ian and Sarah had all the books which meant I had to read most of them that weekend), ThingOne very much likes Charlie and Lola (on TV and in books). It may be that the character of Lola is uncanny at capturing the essence of girls aged 2-5, or it may be that girls of that age pick up a lot from the TV show when exposed to it, but ThingOne is coming out with a lot of “Lolaisms”. This can be quite useful, for example when we tell her we have to comb her hair so she can be “Princess No Knots”. It can also be quite odd, as when we were driving from Ian and Sarah’s house to Bexhill to give ThingOne a chance to paddle in the sea.

Me: We’ve got a surprise for you ThingOne. Ian and Sarah live somewhere very special.
ThingOne: Where? Please you tell me.
Me: Well, we’re going to somewhere fish live.
ThingOne: Where?
Me: Where do fish live ThingOne?
ThingOne: The ocean?
Me: That’s right. So where do you think we’re going?
ThingOne (suddenly very, very excited): I know - OCEANLAND!
Me: Erm, yes. That’ll do.
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Sunday, August 17, 2008

In which ThingOne is a bit backward

ThingOne often wakes up singing ZYX, a song from They Might Be Giants's kids CD Here Come the ABCs. It's basically the alphabet backwards, and I'm tickled to hear her sing it. I was at uni before I learned to recite the alphabet backwards.

I finally got it on video, though here she got the ending wrong, singing eBcba. Fool! Since then, every time she sings it she sings a B instead of a D because she now thinks she's really funny for doing it.

Infuriating! How am I supposed to sell her to a travelling freak show if she thinks it's funny to get it wrong?!

Thursday, August 14, 2008

A varied diet: sprinkles AND food colouring

ThingOne's new venture is a cake decorating business. We hope you like Hundreds and Thousdands. ThingOne does.



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Friday, August 08, 2008

Pleading poverty

Another of ThingOne's choice phrases at the moment that I forgot to mention in the last point: "...because I haven't got any money".

As in, "I need to go upstairs because I haven't got any money".

Or, "I have to get out of bed because I haven't got any money".

We don't understand what this means or where it has come from. I don't think we've said it to her much, and if she wants something in a shop and we say no we don't use that excuse, we just tell her she can't have it.

I wonder what this phrase means to her.

Thursday, August 07, 2008

Quote unquote

A few of ThingOne's favourite phrases at the moment:

"Is that a good plan?" (usually after she suggests doing somehting she likes, e.g. "How about you do a jigsaw with me Daddy? Is that a good plan?")

"Do you understand?" (usually after explaining what she wants to do, especially if we haven't jumped and given her what she wants.)

"Of course I can" (when we ask her to do something that she's willing to do).

It's very funny hearing these things from her mouth. It's sometimes like looking at a mirror on our own behaviour and it's nice to think we (mainly Anne now I come to think about it) use these phrases to her a lot.

While Anne's teaching her these key phrases, I'm educating her in more useful ways. ThingOne now recognises (and frequently asks about) Hellboy, Batman and The Joker (whom I've told her is a rascal who likes to make mischief).

She also ran around the house with me before work this morning, with us both shouting "No, I'M Spartacus!" at each other.

Wednesday, August 06, 2008


A long post, but it's mostly pics.

Before I start droning on about ThingOne's arts 'n' crafts, ThingTwo now has a "Tripp Trapp" high chair, like her big sister. This means she can now sit up at the table with us at meal times. She's not sitting unaided yet, but can do well in this high chair and seems to enjoy being with us during breakfast and lunch. ThingOne isn't sure about not being the centre of attention, but she'll come round.

ThingTwo's not being weaned yet, but we'll start her on solids some time within the next few weeks. She slept through 7pm to 7am for the first time last night, so is coming on well (joy!)

(Just in time for teething to mess everything up!)

Here's the little baldy now:


I recently got ThingOne a Thomas and Friends poster for the Wendy House. ThingOne likes the TV show and books, as it gives her more names to learn, and she can work out (or decide arbitrarily) which engines are boys and which are girls. She liked the poster and she and I were in the Wendy House listing all the characters on it.

Me: "...that's Emily, that's Diesel, that's Mavis,..."
Her: "That's not Mavis!"
Me: "Yes it is ThingOne. Look, it starts with an 'M'. M-Mavis. M-A-V-I-S: MAVIS"
Her: "That's not Mavis, that's Salty!"
Me: (Patronisingly) "No ThingOne, it's definitely not Salty. It's Mavis."
Her: (Laughing) "No Daddy. It's Salty!"

At this point, Anne arrived. Anne's had to sit through the TV show more than I have and so knows many of the characters.

Anne: "Er, she's right. That IS Salty Stephen."

We checked in one of ThingOne's books and sure enough, the poster was wrong. I got out a big black marker and changed the name (more for my benefit than ThingOne's). I don't know how she keeps all these characters names in her head. She certainly has her mother's freakish memory.


Here's ThingOne checking the rest of the characters against her book:


We had more character-driven fun on Sunday, where ThingOne and I drew lots of Mr Men. Notice ThingOne's skilful colouring of Messers Strong and Tickle (I know - rubbish isn't it!) ThingOne kept insisting I draw two of each character so one could be a Mr and one a Little Miss.


Later, ThingOne decided to destroy all we'd drawn on another sheet by "colouring" everything black. "Are you a Goth ThingOne?" I asked.

"No Daddy, I'm Emo.", she replied.*

*She didn't actually say this.

Anne's been feeling ThingOne's not eating a great variety of foods at the moment. I think she's doing well, and that we as kids, and especially our parent's generation, would have had nothing like the variety she has. However, Anne's thinking ThingOne's too reliant on wheat and isn't eating enough different veggies.

ThingOne's recently been quite reluctant to try new foods, but did well last week when Anne made a special effort. Anne suggested a new craft project to help with this push, and ThingOne has responded very well to it. We made (and mounted on cardboard - get us!) a plate for ThingOne and now when she tries something new we make or draw it and stick it to her wall-mounted plate. Anne and I aren't very crafty, so we're particularly pleased with this ingenious blend of art and encouragement.

Until ThingOne decides to rip it from the wall and use it as a Frisbee.

(I didn't know Frisbee was a brand name until Blogger told me it needed the F capitalising.)

Click on the photo to see the large version, in which you can see in exquisite detail the foods The ThingOneter has tried recently.

I'll finish this entry with an astounding structure ThingOne made (with help, I suspect) at nursery this week. I'd imagine the world of modern art would have something clever to say about this yada, yada, yada...