Reading

June 20th, 2018

Joshua’s doing some reading… This one is “God never makes potatoes!”

A blog I recently found, written when Oscar was approaching his first birthday in 2013

May 13th, 2018

A year on…

Sitting on the sofa with my beautiful family; husband on one side and sleeping son on the other.

We’ve been looking back at our blog from a year ago today – it’s our sons birthday tomorrow (5th Feb). On my car journeys to work (where I have my thinking time) I have also been thinking about what was happening at this time a year ago and what has changed in this year.

I feel blessed. I have had a really lovely year – I have always wanted to be a mum and I am so enjoying the experience.

Being parents has definitely changed our lives; I don’t mind most of the time: I like to be busy and organise bits here and there. We used to journey into London to explore a new area or head out for meals without interruption. I could pop into the corner shop on the way home easily and everything was a bit quicker but I am enjoying learning to slow down and be more chilled out.

I think one of the best things about having a child is the joy they bring to people around you – I can see when our families play with him how much they smile. Babies are just so excitable, interesting, grateful and simple (in a nice way) and I think this brings joy. I will always remember the joy that Oscar gave my Grandma and I am so thankful that they met each other.

I am enjoying our learning together as a family and look forward to the changes between 1 and 2.

Words Oscar said at 18 months

May 13th, 2018

Words Oscar can say at 18 months

  • duck
  • ready steady go
  • cat
  • bubble
  • ball
  • daddy
  • mummy
  • go there
  • done
  • dog
  • bye
  • down
  • roar
  • quack

The time I fell into the Danube!

April 2nd, 2018

Changes with a 3 year old!

March 27th, 2018

Joshua’s appetite has changed! It might be that we are living in Romania at the moment so the food is slightly different but, he is morphing into pickiness. I wonder if this is the age where children’s taste buds change or it’s related to developmental changes?!

And another change is freckles. I noticed this too with Oscar. They both weren’t born with many freckles, maybe one or two, but as they approach 3-4 years old they start to appear slowly. How amazing!

Caroline x

Intricate models and drawings

March 13th, 2018

Oscar’s drawing and making has really changed recently becoming much more intricate and detailed. He is very thoughtful with his designing.

Here are a few pictures of his makes… Read the rest of this entry »

Charlie loves his food!

March 8th, 2018

Charlie is 9 months old and has been eating/experimenting/weaning with food since he was 5.5 months old. He’s getting pretty good with it all and as he’s our third little one the nerves are much lower for me. He loves his food and so we’re trying to get him to have a good taste of all the different delicious foods that we are lucky to have!

Book reviews

February 24th, 2018

After I told Oscar about my favourite book from my childhood, he asked that I read it to him, and so began our nightly habit of reading books without pictures that are probably mostly (but not enitrely!) going over his head. Having said that, even Joshua picks up on plenty, despite falling asleep within minutes of me starting to read each night!

Many fascinating conversations spin out of these reading sessions.

Northern Lights by Philip Pullman

It took us about 8 weeks to read the whole thing, and Oscar loved it. It’s a long book, but a fairly straightforward adventure plot. But lots of complex characters and events. His favourite bit is a big battle, where all the groups Lyra has met come together to save the children.

There are 2 more books in this trilogy, but the story and concepts get even more complex, so I’m trying to be patient before reading them!

The B.F.G.

We didn’t enjoy that one as much. It’s a very slow pace!

La Belle Sauvage

Philip Pullman started another trilogy of books in Lyra’s world, and the first was released in 2017. It’s set before Northern Lights. We loved this one, too. Lots of interesting concepts including freedom and morality.

Oscar’s favourite bit is how the Gyptians know the flood is coming, but no one else believes it… and then, of course, the flood does come.

A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine l’Engle

Apparently this is a popular book in America; often read in middle school. I’d not heard of it, but turns out the movie adaptation is coming out in a few weeks! It was on a list of good children’s books, so we tried it out. We enjoyed this one a lot, too. Quite different to what I expected, and I’m quite intrigued to see how the movie turns out.

There are lots more books in this series too, so I expect we’ll come back to this one at some point.

The Hithchiker’s Guide to The Galaxy

I really didn’t expect this one to go down well, but the kids enjoyed it. They liked the computers and robots with “realistic” personalities (including Marvin the utterly depressed android, and the spaceship’s computer that’s always faaar to cheerful). They were both in fits of giggles at the computer singing during a crisis.

Oscar seems interested in robots, aliens, and various types of intelligent creatures. On reflection… I guess that’s a theme running through all these books so far!

Next we’re trying out I, Robot, by Isaac Asimov. We’ll report back in a couple of weeks what we think of that one.

Our first week in Romania 🇷🇴

February 21st, 2018

Hello from Romania!

We have been here, for Matthew’s work, for a week now. It seems quite a bit longer actually! And staying another 6.5 weeks seems a lot.

It’s been particularly cold most days and the temperature is set to drop to the minuses this weekend and next week! Ah!

Matthews been busy at work, starting the day after we’d travelled all day to get here! We all had a good sleep that night after being so tired. But then, the 2 hour time difference hit us, mostly O and J with struggling to go to bed at 8pm – they had a few evenings of being asleep around 9.30/10pm and getting up at 7am ish. We’re nearly there now.

The boys and I have a mission to explore. This has been a little difficult and we’ve frequented the supermarket 3 times now but hopefully we’ll find some other fun places soon.

I wanted to mention a few struggles/anecdotes that have happened so far…

  1. Getting lost every time we go in the car! Today I actually managed to drive home without going the wrong way. It’s particularly difficult because we live around a couple of one way systems; my phone sat nav does not work properly, and neither does the car’s; it’s hard to pull over and stop to check where I am as traffic is quite fast moving (go fast or get out of the way!) and there aren’t great signs! I’m busy counting streets at the moment and trying to look out for recognise-able buildings.
  2. We went for a walk around our local area to explore and found what we thought was a park. It had a fence around it and a gate but I couldn’t see any signs and the gate was open so we went and had a play. Later on, we noticed that adults were going in to the building and then coming out with children. We realised it was a school that we’d trespassed on! We promptly left and I noticed a sign, on the opposite wall to the way we’d come in, saying education. People were looking at us inquisitively! Although that’s the norm here.
  3. My friend Kate had spoken to her Romanian friend before we came here to pass on some tips. One was that it’s normal to stare and be quite blunt with your words. This has been useful information. I have noticed a lot of staring and I find it hard to tolerate. I guess I assume their judging me and find it quite rude but I think it is just a cultural difference. I would say that I’m quite smiley and if I catch someone’s eye in the Uk I smile or try to look friendly. I love it when people smile back (it actually doesn’t happen that often, most people try not to make eye contact.) So, here I’m just smiling at people and even more so if they stare.. is that the right thing to do?
  4. Our first experience at the little supermarket was stressful! We picked up some fruit and veg and bagged it, like back at home, but then we got to the till and it was a disaster! The shopkeeper didn’t speak English and was disapproving of what I’d done. There was a long queue and luckily the man one-behind could speak English and explained that I needed to weigh all of it individually and stick a sticker on. So, nice and kindly, the lady behind came over with me and did it for me. I was a little scared of the shop assistant after causing a delay but I needed a bag so I asked the man who spoke English and he managed to get me one!
  5. The people here seem very helpful and friendly (apart from the staring and straight faces!)
  6. The soft play was closed and only hosts parties! There might be another one or two but we’re yet to explore. I love a good soft play and because it’s so cold a nice indoor space would be beneficial to us all.
  7. I don’t think we stick out like complete foreigners 🙂 people keep talking to us all at full speed and I haven’t got a clue what they’re saying. I try to say buna (hello) quickly so that they realise I’m English or, try to show my confused face!

Caroline x

Arrival of imaginative play

January 31st, 2018

Recently, Joshua (3years 7months) has started to show some great imaginative play.

I’ve realised after hearing him and asking if he needs me when he shouts back, “I’m not talking to you Mummy!”

It’s been so lovely to see and I can’t help thinking that if he was to start school this September, when he’ll just be 4, whether that will be nurtured or lost. Oscar still happily plays imaginatively and independently now at nearly 6.

Caroline 🙂

Picture: Joshua with his friend in his boat.