Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Catch 22

For me, it' s bed time. His, not mine, although there's an inevitable knock on when it's always gone 9pm before you even start thinking about dinner or snatching some down time. Should I stay, or should I go? The dilemma gets me every time. No prizes for guessing what he says. Repeatedly. So I stay, but know that if I go I'd be doing him a favour. Or would I? He certainly doesn't seem to think so when I try and creep out.

Each night is like a game of Russian roulette. Sometimes if I stay, I just prolong both our agonies because he ends up staying awake just to make sure I haven't snuck out. But if I go, he gets so upset that I just end up flying back in to calm him down. And cuddle him. Again. Except for the odd miracle occasion when leaving him is the right choice because without my presence to distract him, he'll give up on the day that much faster and fall asleep. But then again, sometimes he'll do that when I cuddle him. Although sometimes he won't.

Part of me is desperate that it's been two and a half years and still I dread bedtime. But another part of me knows that he won't want to cuddle me forever and even those two and a half years have gone quickly (if you excuse the interminable hours/days/weeks spent waiting for him to drop off). The real catch 22 is that I feel if I leave him to cry now, then I may as well have abandoned my no crying rule years. Sometime I think we'd have all been a lot happier. But then I remember how sweet natured he is, and I like to kid myself that that's got something to do with him never having had to give up on the world because no one came. Until, that is, it's time for bed and I'm in a fresh quandary about what to do again.

This post was inspired by Josie's writing prompt at Sleep is For the Weak. I've long intended to write something for it as oppose to just write words in my head and this week, for some reason, I decided the time had finally come. I hope she thinks the subject matter apt......

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

BMB Carnival time!

So, it's carnival time. Which for the unBritishMummyBloggersinitiated is a bi-monthly celebration of blogging posts. I had intended to suggest a theme, but didn't get the chance because entries started arriving about four weeks ago! And if you think that means I haven't pulled them all together at the last minute, well, think again. Enjoy. I know I did.

Pants with Names wonders how kids suss us out so quickly

Kate takes 5 seconds to embarrass her other half....

Muddling along Mummy wants to know if it's possible to fall back in love?

Carly at Mummyshoes on the cut throat world of baby modeling

21stcenturymummy tackles the torture that is miscarriage

Mama and More bemoans how she’d rather her little girl never felt she needed make up

Musings of a Busy Mum muses how to make the best of a bad soup

Maggie at Red Ted Art, on making a hobby horse for 50p

Mummy From the Heart sees red

New Mummy wants people to give mums a break

Sharon at I heart Motherhood on The big C

Hot Cross Mum reveals how dads are really from mars

Mary at A Small Hand in Mine has some wise words from Dr Seuss

Rachel at Mid 30s Life on beating the gym humiliation

Mission to Motherhood seeks the hidden domestic goddess within

Metal Mummy on debunking common myths

Monday, November 8, 2010

Packing T-shirts and toddlers

Just what do guidebooks have against toddlers? Or new parents come to think of it? For some reason the Lonely Planet et al seem to have decreed that toddlers shouldn't go travelling. Turn to the section about children, and it's always all about older children with absolutely no tips for the under threes. Or fours, or fives.

Yet they're missing a trick. Take Madrid. A fantastic city for young kids as it turns out, contrary to its reputation as party central. The best thing is practically every plaza comes with a playground attached, from the brilliant one on Plaza Oriente, just in front of the Palacio Real (think Buckingham Palace with slides) to the two on Plaza Santa Ana, one of the city's most picturesque. And that's without counting all the ones in the Parque del Retiro. Then there was the tapas. Snack central. (Although I would like to know if there are any guidelines on the number of salty olives a toddler should eat in one sitting?) And it's totally walkable. We didn't make a single Metro journey - and we saw a lot of Madrid. It's also largely pedestrianised; buggy nap heaven. Plus everyone went crazy for Louis. Even the lovely lady in the clothes shop who followed us out into the street and begged me to pop him on the potty inside a changing cubicle rather than make him freeze outside.

It's not that the playgrounds were hard to spot. But a line or two pointing them out might have been nice. That way, Louis could have been bouncing on a see saw on the plaza just off one of the main shopping streets while I browsed, instead brumming his car in the gutter. Some advance knowledge that it was there would have been helpful, rather than leaving us to stumble upon it after Louis fell asleep. What gets me is that we're pretty much the last generation that will use guidebooks. So their authors could bear us in mind when they're updating them. Don't they realise that those student backpackers grew up? Or were we really not supposed to pack the toddler along with the T-shirts?