Archive for the ‘stories’ Category

Time to Post

December 19, 2010

It’s taken a mildly traumatic event to get me back on the blog, which I thought readers might want to hear about. Fortunately it’s all done and dusted and sorted now, so nothing to really worry about.

Today Hannah wanted to pop out to the new M&Co shop in Cowes to do a bit of clothes shopping for the Choir Christmas meal tomorrow, so we all trooped out into the snow. Once she finished that she suggested stopping off in The Anchor for a drink, and then we decided to have dinner there. As we finished off our food Ella said she wanted the loo, so Hannah took her. A few minutes later Hannah returned and quietly said to me ‘Come and see this’. I expected to find something amusing had happened, but not sure what. In the Ladies toilet, one of the two cubicle doors was shut, and Ella was locked inside. Yikes. She wasn’t too upset, and for a couple of minutes we tried to explain to her how to unlock the bolt on the door, which was one of the traditional kind. Looking at the other cubicle, it was also of traditional stout build, which was worrying. These were proper cubicles too, fully closed off, so there was no going over the top or under the door.

Ella started to get upset, so I went out to ask the staff for some help because basically the only option was to knock the door down, which wouldn’t have been good without some ‘official’ involvement. Two lads came to help, and possibly this sort of event wasn’t a first in the pub. We told Ella to move to the back of the cubicle and sit on the loo, which she said she had done (we had no way of telling). She was doing a fair amount of sobbing, but certainly was far from being out of control. I had the first go at trying to kick the door, and it turned out to be quite tough. One of the lads apparently had prior experience of kicking down doors and also had a number of goes, but nothing was budging, except the door frame and the surrounding wall. Ella really didn’t like the noise so we were not very persistent.

One of the lads had the idea of a battering ram and they went off and returned with an empty gas cannister. This certainly gave the door a right good thumping but still it held firm. Ella didn’t like the noise of that at all, so it didn’t last long. At this point we decided to call in the professionals, and the staff called the fire brigade. One of Ella’s current loves in Fireman Sam, and I hoped the thought of being rescued by some firemen might help calm her down, but it didn’t really. We had decided to stop trying the door until the firemen arrived, and Hannah had a sing with Ella, which was actually quite upsetting in some respects with her little voice coming from behind the door.

So the firemen turned up, about four of them piling into the small toilet. They had a couple of meaty crowbars. The initial exploratory jemmying of the door wasn’t too successful, so two of them got involved and eventually the bolt popped and the door sprung open. Ella was obviously out like a shot to have hugs with Mummy, and it was quite emotional. Ella was sufficiently upset that she didn’t take particular notice of any of the Fireman Sams. She got some free ice cream and a round of applause from the patrons in the back room who’d heard all the banging and knew our little girl was stuck. Interestingly several people either said they’d got stuck in loos or had a sibling who had.

So in the end, we got her out. I never doubted we would, it was just a matter of time, but quite upsetting for all involved, and hopefully Ella won’t play with door bolts again before she works out how to unlock them.


Bossiness Extended

November 23, 2009

While working from home today, I’ve been told at least twice ‘No, go away, back to your office’. She is a cheeky monkey.

Toilet Humour

July 29, 2009

Ella is developing something of a dirty mind. Today, while I was bathing her, she did two quite load farts, giggled, and then said ‘bit funny, poo in bath’. I really had to fight hard to not completely crease myself up laughing. There wasn’t any poo in the bath, by the way.

Worst Night Ever

July 12, 2009

Yesterday we went over to Barbara’s for her birthday party. We decided to take Ella, and stay over. This meant that a) Ella would go to bed later than usual; b) probably be somewhat over-excited; c) sleep in the same room as us, which does tend to make her more difficult to put down; d) sleep in a slightly unusual cot (which she does sleep in occasionally). Okay, not the best set of influences for a good night’s sleep, but every-so-often, on a special occasion, you have to push the boundaries. She was quite excited at Barbara’s house before everyone arrived, and remained so after the party goers turned up. We didn’t keep her up long after the party started, and settled her down to bed. After a while she was still awake, so Hannah spent some time in the room with her, and she did go off to sleep. It’s not unusual for her to take an hour to go to sleep at home, with her just talking or singing to herself or her toys. When we went to bed, which was about 2am (rockstar lifestyle), she popped awake and wouldn’t go back to sleep. I have to confess to being quite rubbish, having been under orders from Hannah to take advantage of not having to drive and consume beer; and Hannah did most of the work to try and get Ella back to sleep. Eventually, after some fitful periods of sleep, Hannah and Ella got up around 5, and went off to watch TV, though Ella did bash Hannah in the eye with a book, which didn’t help. Hannah got me up at 7 so she could have a some kip. So come 10 o’clock when we left, all three of us were quite tired. Ella did do quite well in the breakfast stakes, having got one from her mother early on, and another later from her Gan-gan when Hannah was asleep and no-one knew Ella had already had breakfast.

She was rather crotchety at bed time tonight, but she was asleep nice and early (which you can tell from the fact that I’m writing this now and it’s 7:15, when Ella would normally still be heading for bed) so hopefully tomorrow she’ll be bright and breezy again. She’ll need to be because Miriam (Hannah’s younger sister) is coming to stay, and no doubt Ella will be engaged in a whirlwind of activity for the few days Miri is here for.

A Small Adventure

July 10, 2009

I took the day off today to look after Ella while Hannah had the day in school running one of the Arts Blast events (you’d have to ask Hannah for information on what that was). In order to go and pick up my new phone, and as Hannah had the car, and as the weather was quite good, I thought that Ella and I would have a walk down the cycle path to Newport (where the parcel office is). The walk to Newport took about an hour and a half. Ella didn’t walk all the way, indeed, she was in the buggy for most of it because I was on a deadline to get to Medina Quay for lunch with Hannah. She did have a couple of short stints powering herself; the first when we got the the start of the cycle path, and Ella was definitely full of energy, doing quite a bit of ‘chasing’; and then later on as we neared Newport and I was less worried about the amount of time left. In truth, in the whole journey, the thing that interested her the most was the noisy cement/aggregate works on the edge of Cowes; apart from the packet of carrot stix crisps she ate.

We met Hannah for a nice lunch, though Hannah had to dash off, as she only had an hour. After which we stopped briefly at a swing park, before catching the bus home. It wasn’t a very tiring adventure for Ella, as she was pushed most of the way, but it was for me. She did get a good sleep when we got home, and I got to play with my new phone. 🙂

Happy Birthday

July 1, 2009

Well, it’s nearly time for my blog on Yahoo 360 to come to a close, but before it does, I should talk about the latest big event: Ella’s second birthday.

She was 2 on Saturday just gone. We had a party at the house, and that all went well. It was a BBQ in the evening, so Ella could have her usual afternoon nap. My folks and little brother, Hamish, and his wife, Christine were staying here, and so Ella was perfectly spoilt all through the day. Barbara and Hannah’s sister, Rachel, came round late in the morning to do some more spoiling and help out with the preparations.

Hannah and I had Ella sleeping in our room, as Hamish and Christine were in Ella’s, so that meant we could give Ella her presents from us when she woke up. We didn’t really get her anything too big, because she’s already got many, many things, just a toy laptop (not as fancy as it sounds) and some toy trucks. She likes the computer, but it is somewhat too advanced for her, and most adults have struggled with its games and puzzles.

Obviously she got many other presents with her trampoline (from Granny) and piano (Gangan, not a real piano, but quite impressive for a toy) being particular favourites. She loves playing with them all, though. She also got some lovely clothes too.

All the attention before the party did wear her out, so her afternoon nap was quite long. Even after she’d gone to sleep after the party, she still seemed quite tired on Sunday morning and had another big sleep on Sunday afternoon.

We had her singing Happy Birthday to herself, which is quite impressive. Her every improving speach helped her be a real star on the day. Indeed, she is moving onto quite advanced observations, saying from the back of the car ‘goodness sake, traffic’!

Before her party this week, she’d shared another with Tristan, the son of Hannah’s friend, Natalie. That was quite relaxed for us, as it wasn’t at our house, we just arrived with some food and extra toys to keep the kids amused. The weather was good that day, as well as on Ella’s birthday itself, which certainly helped keep both parties enjoyable.


June 7, 2009

This word is one often used by Ella, and, in line with many toddlers, actually means ‘I want that and someone else is using it’. A recent example, which she talks about almost as frequently as she does the bee in the hair incident, was over a pair of shoes. Last week, Ella had been at a birthday party, with pirate theme, which she enjoyed. Afterwards, back at our house, one of Hannah’s friends, was over, with her son, Tristan. Tristan had a pair of kiddies Crocs shoes on, and Ella took a liking to them. She pointed at them and said ‘share’. I’m not sure if Tristan then took them off, or if Ella just swiped them from his feet, but she got hold of them, and put them on and really quite liked them. When the time came for Tristan and his mum to leave, Ella had to be parted from the shoes, and said had a bit of a crying fit. This isn’t really sharing as we see it as adults. Now, Ella talks about ‘share’, ‘cry’, ‘shoes’, which is her retelling this tale.

Bank Holiday Weekend

May 25, 2009

It’s been a lovely weekend on the island with excellent weather. It certainly started well for me because we got everything done on the project and didn’t have to work over the weekend to finish off. There was a real chance of this happening, so it was relief all round at work.

Last week, Clare, my Mum, was staying, and Ella had lots of good time with her. As mentioned in the posting before this, Hannah and I took advantage and went to the cimema last weekend. Apart from the usual choir reherseal, I don’t think we went out otherwise, but certainly we benefited from not having to be responsive to Ella’s hour of wakening, which is getting earlier (often before 7).

Over the weekend we’ve been by the sea quite a lot. On Saturday we went to Chessell Pottery and tried to do some pottery painting with Ella. It has to be said she wasn’t too interested in that, she did like trying to paint the table instead, and beforehand had really enjoyed looking at the little fountain in their courtyard, and picking kidney beans, black beans, haricot beans and chickpeas out of my salad. She does have a very eclictic palate. After the pottery we went to Compton Bay, and being completely unprepared and bad parents, Ella got very sandy and wet and we didn’t have a towel or swimming costume for her. She really loved playing in a pool of water on the beach and digging in the sand. Eventually she was naked, and we dried her off using one of Hannah’s jumpers, which she also then wore. She did get to enjoy an ice cream afterwards.

On Sunday we didn’t go a great deal, but in the evening met up with Barbara (Gan-gan) and Brian, and Barbara’s brother, David; his wife, Diane, and their daugher Isobel, who was one of our bridesmaids. Generally it was a lovely evening at The Woodvale in Gurnard enjoying the evening sun and views over the Solent, but early on was marred by Ella having a very long crying episode. She clung to Hannah sobbing away for fifteen minutes, before having a few minutes with me, and then deciding to cheer up and play with Barbara and Isobel. We don’t know what started it, and she was happy as Larry for the rest of the evening.

Today seemed set to be rainy, and so we set out to Ryde to meet Hannah’s sister, Rachel, expecting to have to choose some indoor entertainment. By the time we got there it was brightening up so we went to St Helen’s beach, which is over on the east of the island, not far from Ryde. The weather got better and better, and soon Ella was digging away on the beach again. She didn’t get nearly as messy as Saturday, mostly because the sand was dry and not very sticky, but she did have lots of time digging away and a wee paddle with Auntie Rachel. There’s a cafe right on the beach so we had some great scones when we arrived and a pleasant lunch later on.

All-in-all, a very pleasant weekend taking in the island like the tourists do. Though there weren’t many tourists at the choir reherseal this evening, so we weren’t entirely like tourists all weekend.