Tuesday, 29 March 2016

What we are up to at the moment - day-to-day life and a special announcement.

I know I've already done a "where we've been" post but I have good reason (I promise) to post this one as well.

Where we are

As you may know we have upped sticks and moved to Christchurch for my Husbands job. We are currently living in a small one bedroom flat and Ella is back in our room - short term.

The reason for the temporary accommodation is because we are having a house built in a different part of Christchurch. It's all very exciting, the framing is up, the guttering and roof is hopefully going on next week. It is due to be completed at the beginning to middle of June - which can't come soon enough! 

It's a bit cramped currently, but it's not for too long. The Landlords who own the flat are so lovely and so accommodating they've even allowed us to use their heated pool - which is a huge novelty!

We've also been travelling all over Christchurch, to look around, from the City Centre, to Akaroa, to Lake Coleridge, Lake Ellesmere, Amberley, the East Coast and beyond. It's been heaps of fun exploring and finding out where everything is and where we want to be based.

My next task is to join a couple of local Mum groups to try and make some new friends as I think it's important for Ella to socialise.  We are lucky to already have our friend just around the corner, who is the same age as Ella who we see fairly regularly.

I've also put Ella on the waiting list for swimming lessons, so that we can keep her confident and learning to swim.

Ella update

As you've probably seen in my recent post or photos on Facebook Ella has grown and changed a lot.

She is:

- 16 months old today
- Weighing in at 11.6kg (at her 15month check-up)
- 78cm tall
- She has 8 teeth (4 on the top and 4 on the bottom)
- Walking (Started walking at 14 months, a couple of days after we moved to Christchurch)
- Babbling/talking
- She can say Mum, Dad, what's this or what's that?, hello and Yum etc.Plus, lots of sounds, noises and general chatting.
- She knows what a cow is and whenever she sees one (real or otherwise) she moos at it.
- She can point to her or our tummies when you ask her to. She can bring you certain things, like her dummy or her cuddly bunny. She tries to jump, when you say to.

Update about me?

Well, if you haven't guessed already thanks to the Facebook update that brought you here. 

I am PREGNANT with baby number two!

I am currently 19 weeks pregnant today and due on the 24th of August.

This was also a BIG reason for my absence from blogging, I was extremely tired and suffering from morning sickness. I'm feeling better now, still tired of course, but not so sick. I still have the occasional bout of nausea but I think that's due to tiredness.

I will be posting an update on my pregnancy so far and how things have been going in a couple of days.

We are very excited at the prospect of Ella having a little brother or sister in 4 and half months or so and I can't wait to keep you updated on what those months brings. 

It also means I will have two under two! Eep! Ella will be 21 months by the time baby number two arrives.

Me at 17weeks.

Wednesday, 23 March 2016

Life with a toddler - a whole new ball game!

As I mentioned in my last post Ella is now 15 months old (approaching 16 months very soon), she's walking, babbling and using some words - generally, little Ms Independant. I'm not sure quite when this changed, or when she became a toddler but it's happened, the inevitable has happened - she's no longer my little baby!

With the beginnings of toddlerhood brings a whole new set of challenges - ones I'm not quite sure I was 100% prepared for. You know when those annoying parents say to you "If you think you're tired now, wait until you have a toddler!" well as much as it pains me to admit it - they were right! 

I mean bloody hell, she's exhausting, she's literally a walking "toddler tornado"! Don't get me wrong, some days she can be absolute sweetness itself and other days it's like she's been replaced with a little, cute looking, unassuming devil child.

The following are some of the few observations I have made over the last couple of months...

1. Do not offer toddler food or drink he/she doesn't want, this will result in an epic tantrum. How, you may ask, am I supposed to know if they don't or didn't want it? Well, simple really, you must be a mind reader. The other day, I offered Ella a drink of water (how dare I offer nourishment and sustenance to my child!) which then resulted in her throwing herself on the floor like life wasn't worth living.

2. If toddler actually does happen to take offered food or drink, (Yay!) but then decides he/she doesn't actually want it there is no hesitation in spitting out whatever partially chewed food is left or throwing it on the floor.

3. It doesn't matter whether or not you are eating exactly the same food as said toddler, you can bet your life they want what you've got on YOUR plate.

4. The smallest most unassuming things can cause the most epic toddler shit fits. For example, offering food, not giving food, giving food toddler DID want (but actually doesn't), not allowing toddler to grab my nose with her little clawed vice grip, not allowing her to walk onto a road or to play with light sockets or to jump on my stomach or pull my hair and so on and so forth...you get the gist.

5. Allow extra time for EVERYTHING. Everything takes twice as long as it used to. Leaving the house, or leaving anywhere for that matter, changing a nappy, bathing or showering said child, putting the washing on the line etc etc

6. Toddlers are like magnets to danger, you name it they want it or want to be near it. Roads? Sure, why not. Hot ovens? Yea, so much fun. Climbing onto things and almost falling off? Yea, living on the edge. Eating random things off the path or out of gutters? Mmm, yea tasty.

7. Tantrums, whilst normally quite entertaining and sometimes a little embarrassing, can be quite tricky. When an 11.6kg ball of muscle decides she doesn't want to do anything it's quite hard to make think otherwise. She throws herself onto the floor, arches her bank, goes limp, thrashes and kicks around. Only 2 or 3 tantrums in one day is considered to be a "good day".

8. You could own every single toy under the sun BUT you can guarantee your toddler would rather play with anything other than those toys. For example, a cell phone, the remote control, a keyboard, pulling all the wipes out of the packet, the stones in the garden, the toilet seat etc. 

It's pretty certain that toddlers are unusual little creatures, with huge personalities for the size of the person. They know (in their minds) what they want and what they definately DON'T want. One minute they could be the sweetest, most affectionate and calmest little thing then the next...turn into an absolute screaming, violent little dictator.

It can't be easy knowing what you want but not knowing how to communicate properly with someone or not being able to translate into words or gestures what you need. This new "phase" has been an interesting experience (one of many) and by far one of the most difficult. They are learning and changing at such a rapid rate, it's quite hard to keep up!

I'm sure those of you that have a toddler/s or have been through this stage can relate. To those of you that are yet to go through this or are fast approaching it, all I can say is "good luck"!

Monday, 21 March 2016

I'm back - where have I been?

It's been a long while since I sat down in front of my computer and started to write, in fact it's only been a month or two but it feels like a lifetime and few things have changed since then.

Now, I feel like it's a good time for me to get back into the blogging world, I do miss it because when I was in the "zone" I enjoyed writing. I enjoyed putting my thoughts and feelings down on paper - it was a great outlet for my thoughts when my head was getting a bit too "cluttered" - as it is most days really.

As I was saying a lot has happened in the short time i've been "offline" so I think it's only fair, before I launch into general blog content, I fill you in.

Firstly, Ella and I have officially packed up and moved to Christchurch. We packed up everything we could fit into a borrowed van and moved down to Christchurch where we are living in a temporary rental until we can secure a more permanent place to live. 

One of the main reasons why we made the move earlier than anticipated was because I was really struggling to cope on my own - having spent six months solo parenting, only seeing my Husband every three weeks or so. Whilst struggling to cope with solo parenting I had a lot of other personal issues going on, not just, with myself but within my family.

So, from trying to parent Ella, to trying to keep up with household jobs, to extreme tiredness, to family issues it was all becoming too much and it had got to the point where I needed help, before things got worse and before I ended up having a break down - that was seriously where I thought I was headed. I needed to talk things over with someone, to clear my head when it felt like I had a permanent haze hanging over me. I sought help through my GP and luckily I was able to have funded counselling sessions to help me get back on track.

While all this was going on blogging (and rightly so) took a back seat, my mind was a haze so how could I keep trotting out original, decent material?

I feel at this point now, I'm starting to get back to normal, I'm feeling more in control - partially thanks to having our family back together, but also in thanks to having offloaded a couple of years worth of baggage onto someone who can help me make sense of whats gone on.

Don't get me wrong, I'm still tired - there hasn't been a time when I haven't felt at least a little bit tired since becoming a parent, but I'm sure you can all relate? There are still times where I struggle, but I've discovered that's normal, that's real life. We can't be expected to always have our shit together nor can we be expected to always be chirpy and happy, life just isn't like that and if anything it's taught me that life is full of up's and down's - it's just a matter of taking each day as it comes and getting through it.

My head is now feeling clearer and Ella, myself and my Husband are all back together living under one roof as a family - now we're embarking on new adventures (in more ways than one) in Christchurch and I feel like I may have a few bits of new material up my sleeve - mainly in thanks to now having a fully fledged, walking and tantruming toddler!

Yes, that's right my beautiful little Ella, the one who inspired this blog is now a walking, babbling toddler already suffering from early onset of the "terrible twos"!

This part of my life, and Ella's life, is a WHOLE new journey and a fresh set of challenges. Just when you think you've got it sorted... then BOOM toddlerhood rears it's (very) ugly head and you're thrown in the deep end once more.

 So, thanks to my lovely baby who is no longer a baby, over the next few weeks/months/years I am gaining a fresh set of experiences and observations to share with you as a (slightly) bewildered, tired, exasperated Mother to a 15 month old - who finds herself sighing more frequently and looking increasingly more dishevelled than ever before!

 On another note - how the hell do I have a 15 month old? Also, I take back what I said about newborn being the hardest stage, NUH UH this is whole new ball game! Give me strength.

So, my precious readers, those that have continued to stay with me throughout my "disappearance" I'm hoping you will find that the sarcastic, dry sense of humour in me is back and better than ever!

I hope you'll continue to follow me on my Motherhood journey and thanks for "hanging" in there while I took a much needed break.

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