Yesterday, I took T into town to the baby group at our local library. We’ve been so busy recently we haven’t been for a few weeks, so it was good to get out. Opposite the library is a church, which holds a parent & baby group. As we left the library and I was heading back to the car, I was reading the church sign trying to find out when the group was on. I walked up to the car, pressed the button on the key fob and grabbed the door handle. Nothing happened. Maybe I hadn’t pressed the button properly. I tried again, still engrossed in the sign. It still wouldn’t open. I looked at the car, frowning, and realised, to my embarrassment, it wasn’t my car! It was an estate, like mine, but that was pretty much where the similarity ended. Mine was the next one up. I looked around, like you do, hoping no-one is there to witness your shame. There were 3 ladies getting out of a car, giving me strange looks. I hurried to my car, opened the door, and as I turned to put T in his seat, saw the owner of the car I had attempted to break into heading towards it. I remembered seeing her get out of her car as we got out of ours. She had a black dog with her, and T was transfixed, as he loves dogs. She had obviously seen it all, as she called out to me. ‘Don’t worry, I’ve tried to get into the wrong car many times!’ I replied, ‘It’s the first time I’ve ever done it!’ Her answer? ‘At least I’ve got old age to blame!’ Erm, yeah, I don’t really have any excuse! Baby brain?
Yesterday T and I ventured into the ‘big’ town as I needed a few things. I had to go to a certain large catalogue-based shop for some puddle suits, and while I was there I thought I’d get him a couple of new toys, as there was an offer on. I picked out 2 that were interactive and claim to help with motor skills and problem solving. DH was quite excited about them too (and didn’t tell me off for spending money!) as we like to challenge T and watch him explore and discover the world.
This morning DH got one out and T was totally engrossed, trying and testing every moving part, working out where noises came from when he turned it upside down. DH and I exchanged those little glances I’m sure all first-time parents do, the ‘isn’t he clever’ and ‘I’m so proud’ looks. Suddenly, T saw the box the toy came in. The toy was cast to one side, and he speed-crawled over DH’s legs to the box. We have boxes in the garage. They are free. Why did I go out and buy toys?
Pickle has been very busy today, basically, being a pickle. It started about an hour after breakfast, when I tried to do the vacuuming. He used to love it when I turned the vacuum on, bouncing and flapping his arms. Now he’s not so sure he likes it. Today I think he was a bit tired anyway, and wanted picking up whenever the vacuum came near him. I ended up vacuuming with him on my hip, putting him down and switching off every time I had to move something. When I’d finished I sat down to check my emails, with him on my lap.
There is a parlour palm on top of a filing cabinet (out of reach) next to the desk. However, when he’s being held by one of us who is at the computer, he can reach the palm, and rip it’s leaves off. He got 2 leaves today, and tasted them, then went for more. This time he grabbed a whole frond, and managed to yank the entire plant, and pot, over the two of us. Earth showered over us, the desk, the clean floor, and the cabinet, as I fought to escape the clutches of a large plant whilst keeping the baby on my lap. When I finally escaped, I checked for damage. T was making faces and smacking his lips as he ate the dirt that had ended up in his mouth. It was in his hair, on his face, in his ears, dusting his shoulders, and I’m sure some went down my top too, as I felt distinctly itchy.
I dusted him down, took him into the other room and plopped him down in front of his toy box while I started vacuuming up the mess. He heard the vacuum cleaner, speed crawled to me and clung to my arm, crying to be picked up, while I hoovered. It was time for a cup of tea (for me), milk (for him) and snuggles and a nap. The next few hours passed fairly uneventfully, as I got a few jobs done and then we went to town. Being the scatterbrain that I am, I put a coat on T, but forgot my own, and so got rather wet.
When we got back, I left him unattended while I made myself another cup of tea. I returned to find him eating a dictionary. How he got hold of it I do not know, I’m not even sure where it was in the first place! I removed it, and put it out of reach, leaving the room again. When I came back, he was shredding and eating a bookmark.
Handover time as I had to go to work, so it was Daddy and son time. I had been gone no more than half an hour when I got a text, saying that T had managed to turn on the vacuum cleaner, scared himself so much he fell over trying to get away, and bumped into some furniture. Thankfully he was fine, and I had a good laugh in the milking parlour.
He is so entertaining, and it’s funny looking back at what he’s got up to during the day, but there is a certain sense of relief when he’s safely tucked up in bed for the night. I wonder what tomorrow has in store..?
The escapee is now safely behind bars. I am referring of course to a child safety gate, just in case you were wondering. After my last post, I started scouring local selling sites for safety gates, as the furniture barriers were not the safest when he tried using them to haul himself to his feet. I found 2 available for sale, within a few miles of each other, so I went to collect them today. Of course, this was not without drama.
The first gate was a fairly simple drive away. I pulled up in front of the house, knocked on the door and the lady said the gate was in her car. I stepped backwards to let her lead the way to the car, and stood on something…unusual. There was a screech of indignation and a black cat shot away. I apologised profusely to the owner, while the cat crouched behind a fence giving me an evil glare. I have never stood on a cat before, but apparently this cat likes sitting behind people, and hasn’t learned that that is a good way to get trodden on. The cat seemed fine, if a little disgruntled, I collected my gate and was on my way.
The second house was slightly harder to find, and it didn’t help that I couldn’t see any house numbers, so I was driving down the road at a snail’s pace, with a lady driving right up behind me. I found the house, rang the bell and was greeting by a lot of barking. The man opened the door and the smell of dog hit me. Don’t get me wrong, I like dogs, and my house doesn’t smell of roses, but this was quite strong. He then insisted on showing me all the parts and how the gate worked. I was holding onto it giving gentle tugs while saying ‘Yes, great, thank you’. I got away, went to the back of the car to open the boot and noticed an even more unpleasant smell. I had parked over a drain, and a very drainy smell was wafting out of it.
When I got home I cracked open the disinfectant and gave the gates a clean. T was exploring the kitchen as I was on the back step, and he was practicing opening and closing a cupboard door. I cringed a bit as I realised the cupboard he had chosen was the one with the alcohol in it. The last thing I needed was for him to grab a bottle and break it, spilling all the…. I mean possibly hurting himself. Door locks are the next job on the list. At least fitting the gates wasn’t such a hard job, though it did highlight once again the fact that no walls or door frames in this house are straight. I think whoever built it had a wonky eye or something. Wallpapering our bedroom was an experience I never wish to repeat.
Now where did I put the box of childproofing stuff?
Mr T properly started crawling last weekend, and we have very quickly realised that stationary babies are a doddle to keep an eye on compared to moving ones. If he wants something, he will keep going to find it, no matter how often you remove him and put him back at his starting point. This morning it was the dog’s rawhide chew. He was crawling across 3 rooms to find it. Eventually, I just let him play with it, the dog got a bit disgruntled and ate it, so problem solved!
We currently have no stair gates (they are on the ever-expanding list) so our house somewhat resembles a scene from the final half hour of Les Miserables, with household furniture piled up to form barricades. The problem is, we don’t have enough suitable furniture!
If we ever thought it was hard getting housework done while watching a child before, it has suddenly got 10 times worse. Even loading the dishwasher proves difficult. I realised we desperately needed to get it loaded and run while I was making a cup of tea at 10pm with a plastic baby spoon.
I have to go now, he is under a dining chair and has a habit of trying to sit up while under hard objects, with disastrous consequences!