Archive for September, 2008

A Week with the Family

September 21, 2008

Granny has been down visiting Ella (and us) through the week, and then over this weekend, Ella has been to see her (Great) Uncle David and Auntie Dianne, with their children Nicky, Simon and Isabel. Nicky and Simon are fully grown blokes, so not up for playing with Ella, but she did get a chance to flirt. Isabel is only 4 or 5, so she had a good play with Ella, and when visiting us at home today, went up to Ella’s room and played with Ella and her toys. She was certainly very big-sisterly.

Clare had plenty of time with Ella while she was staying, taking her on walks etc. This was the first time she’d seen Ella since Ella started walking properly, so that was quite a change compared to when she last saw Ella in France. No more Ella pushing the buggy around! I am sure Ella enjoyed her time with her Granny, even though her first reaction when Granny arrived last Sunday was very definitely indifference.

While she was here, we gave Clare the task of doing some gardening, and as a result I’ve got half a tree in the front garden to chop into smaller pieces and take to the dump, where it’ll be composted. And the car needs cleaning as it’s covered in bird droppings. And this study is still full of stuff from our tidying of the house for renting. All sorts, and I’m not really that motivated to do it.

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Mucky

September 13, 2008

Now that Ella is more mobile she is more mucky. Today we went over to Northwood Park, which has a kid’s playpark, and in crawling or walking between the swings and other apparatus, Ella got black knees, hands and feet. She is, of course, also eating more stuff off the ground, though I think we catch most of that.

She really likes throwing things. I don’t think I’ve mentioned this previously, but for quite a while now (all summer) she has been throwing the little wooden animals of her wooden Noah’s ark out of the ark and around the room. Recently this behaviour has graduated to opening drawers and doing the same. Thankfully really only the drawers in her room, so it is limited to towels and her clothes, rather than plates and saucepans in the kitchen.

Both going up and coming down stairs have now been mastered. Coming down is obviously not as a grown-up does, rather on her hands and knees and is periously close to her just sliding down. Her walking skills are always improving, with turning achieved (not something you’d think you have to learn) and holding stuff while walking. Today she spent quite a while combining these two by walking round and round me, while I was sat on the floor, holding a ball. She also walks with her bottle and drinks from it.

She talks lots and I know it’s still a long time until much of it makes sense, but it is frustrating not being able to fully communicate with her. Yesterday, though, she did says ‘shoes’ a couple of times.

Tomorrow, Clare, my Mum, arrives for a few days. This gives Barbara, as well as us, some time off and lovely time for Granny to spend with Ella, and vice versa. Hopefully that’ll be fun for all.

End of Summer

September 6, 2008

In truth, the season of summer probably ended around June this year, and the current run of bad weather was described as an ‘autumnal low’ on the weather forecast, so the writing is most definitely on the wall for summer. The end of that season means Hannah has returned to school. She has been working quite hard over the past couple of weeks pulling together various PSHE course plans and French lesson plans and getting ready to prepare her new classroom (which is apparently the worst in the school). Obviously she has concerns about how well her eyes will deal with the various tasks of being a teacher, and we’ll have to wait and see how that goes. After a couple of days of training, Thursday was the first real day of lessons, and I believe that was mostly okay. Next week is the real first week and by the end of it Hannah will know the character of each of her classes and have an idea of the challenges of the year ahead.

This year her days in work have changed from last, with it being Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays. Ella’s childcare continues much the same: Monday and Thursday with Gangan and the day with the childminder (Marilyn) now Tuesday rather than Wednesday.

Shoes No2

September 6, 2008

As Ella is now walking as much as crawling and as her first pair of fitted shoes are now pretty small, I was given the task of going into Newport with her to buy a new pair. I was also meant to take back the pushchair we bought about three months ago, which has broken (it was bought as a ‘lighter’ option to the Pliko Pramette), but I forgot any form of receipt.

It was a rather damp day today, so it wasn’t a great deal of fun trudging round Newport, trying to remember where Clarks was. My first attempt to buy something was thwarted by the large number of people in the shop, and so I returned to searching for a where I thought shops were to buy myself a new waterproof, my previous one having gone missing. I did succeed with that, and Ella also succeeded in receiving complements from the shop assistant in Milletts, and so returned to Clarks to discover they had a ticketed waiting system for children’s fittings. Ella was very good during the half hour wait, in turn entertained by bright pink rucksacks (having a chew on one of them), having a hold and a good look around, having a play with some grown-up shoes and a quick flirt with a small boy who was also waiting for shoes. The actual fitting, selection and trying out of the shoes was quite quick with Ella continuing to be a darling and not fussing at all, even showing off her walking skills in her new shoes. A short grocery shop was followed by car park disaster as I dragged the passenger side front door along a pillar while trying to maneuver the car out of its space. Arse. That did put me in a bad mood, and Scotland losing the football to Macedonia didn’t brighten it any.

Which was rather a shame, because it was rather pleasant pushing Ella around Newport and buying her some shoes, and generally looking after her through the day (Hannah was doing a good deal of teaching). She’s very communicative these days, not that you can understand most of it, but occasional ‘ohs’ and ‘ahs’ are quite expressive. Of course the walking makes her look very much more like a child than a baby now, and she can walk quite reliably across rooms while carrying things (she especially likes carrying her bag). So with all this development, I certainly feel more fatherly because there is much more interaction now.