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Creepy crawler (7 months)

So, Mowgli can now commando crawl. She started doing it a bit over a week ago, after a couple of months of rolling being her main method of moving around. I took a video of her a couple of days after she started and I’m sooo glad I did. In the beginning she sort of caterpillar humped/lurched and dragged herself around, sometimes launching into a roll as her balance got out of whack. Now just a week later, she is much better, more like a little lizard wriggling along the ground. She can go quite far, quite fast. She does silly things like get stuck under our bed.

The improvement in movement has happened at the same time as a desire to get things she wants ASAP. She frequently wants whatever Sweets has and if she doesn’t have it, she shrieks her complaints. The other thing she often wants is to be carried around. She will want me to pick her up and will crawl into and then onto me to ensure this will occur. Sometimes I am too far away so the crying out begins. She is also a heffalump, so I have had a sore wrist, from lugging her around, for about 3 months. Sigh.

She is lucky she is cute!

We also took Mowgli for her first ever swim! Sweets loves going swimming and it’s something we do as a family and then once Mowgli was born, something she would do with Beau. Naw for Dada-daughter activities. Anyway, other stuff has meant she hasn’t been for a while and now Mogles is old enough, so we all went together. They both *love* it. I wasn’t sure how long Mowgli would last as she was very tired when we got to the pool, but it was Sweets who tired out first! Awesomely they both fell asleep in the car on the drive home. Cute peas.


Sweet Pea

Recently, Sweets has decided that her middle name is a term of endearment. We’ve always called her both names as it sounds sweet. But now she has started to use it back on us! ie if Pea was her middle name, she will say something like:

“Mama Giffy, don’t forget Mowgli Pea!” or “Mowgli Pea is our little baby” or, “Hello Mama Pea”.

She’s awesome and it’s nice that a full name is an endearment and not something for telling off!

6 month celebrations

Mogle’s 6 monthaversary coincided with Te Papa events featuring both her Yai and her Kuia! My Mum was involved in the celebration of the Thai Queen’s Birthday aka Thai Mother’s Day, which the local Thai Community group and Embassy decided to celebrate with a traditional Thai Wedding. 9 couples were involved, they had the grooms challenge and water blessings like we had at our wedding. They also had displays of Kiwi Thai art, by a friend, thai fruit carving and Thai dancing.

My MiL is involved with a display of Maori cloaks and was an in house weaver! She is weaving a cloak of flax (harakeke) and pukeko feathers. Beau’s oldest sister and her husband were down from Auckland and his FiL and younger sister came by Te Papa too.

Great for Mogles and Sweets to see so many family members and involved in such diverse activities 🙂

In other news, a memory I don’t want to forget, recently we were on holiday and driving between Tauranga and Auckland. I went and sneaked a piece of chocolate and hear a sniffing sound from the back seat. “I smell choc-o-late!”. My wonderful daughter!


5 months and 2 1/2 years

I have thought so, so many times in the last few months that I must blog about the girls. But life is just so busy that I don’t. Also, facebook, it’s so insidiuous at using up internet time. I’ll go on for just one second and an hour later. Sigh. Anyway, this may be rambling and not make much sense, but I shall blog!

Mogles just changes day to day to day. She started as a small little pea and now! Roly poly in every way! I think the actual rolling she is doing is now reducing her arm, leg and neck rolls. She has been trying to get me to feed her solids for weeks, watching and grabbing and drooling on anything she can get her little scrabbly hands on. I finally succumbed this evening and the whole family enjoyed watching the funny faces she pulled as she grabbed, tasted and then flung away her steamed vegetable. She is normally a cruisy wee thing (she frequently charms people by smiling at them and allowing them to cuddle her) and is happy to go along with what we’re doing, but she really doesn’t sleep enough in the day. I feel guilty about it as I don’t have time to help her sleep the way I did with Sweets. Mostly because we are too busy doing stuff with/for Sweets. It’s weird having mother of second child angst. Sweets is probably her favourite person in the world. Sweets is the one who definitely gets the most giggles out of her. It is the happiest noise 🙂 Must record!

Sweets is a gorgeous gregarious creature. She loves adult attention and will be heard saying “Will you play with me?”. She sings! I love it so much. Hearing her little voice warbling out various disney tunes and nursery rhymes. She does a pretty impressive version of “Circle of Life”. She is also amazing at playing on her own. She gets various animal toys and takes them on bus rides, puts them to bed etc. A common storyline she plays out is a little animal calling for its Mama. She loves it so, so much if someone joins in a plays a character. Current favourite names for the various characters are “Gitty” and “Gota”. Who knows?

<3 Mogles is unsettled so I must to bed and cuddle her until we both sleep. Laters.

39 weeks and all is well.

So, I meant to write this last week. I’ve meant to write sooo many times since Sweets turned two.

Anyway, lazy me, here is something I posted to FB a couple of weeks ago:

” Not long to go for me with current pregnancy and Beau has been remarking how strange it is that I’m not “ready” to give birth yet. Last time I was so over it at this stage (38+5). I am just really enjoying this time! SPD (Symphysis pubis disorder) has for no apparent reason lessened in the past few weeks, so actually in less pain/discomfort than earlier in pregnancy. I don’t have all the oedema I did with Sweets. Beau is on leave and I’m finding Sweets (25months) such a delight. I am just really enjoying this time! I know that soon it will be newborn madness! Also, last time I was thinking I’d have baby early (my Mum had all 4 of us early) and had even had a day of painful braxton hicks at 37weeks and then Sweets was 8 days late! Feeling much more zen about baby arriving this time. “

Anyway, that night, I got my “show”! The next morning started to have irregular painful Braxton Hicks. Super happy to stay pregnant and then things step up a notch. Started wondering if things were going to happen and had a very chillaxed day at home. No change and managed to nap and then even had a good sleep over night. The next day, I continued to get the contractions, but only every 20-30min at most. Since I knew it could go on for days, decided it was business as usual and as a family we went out and about all day. Ordered Sweets a nice new bed, went to the vege market, visited Beau’s parents and walked to the local park where a wee festival was going down and then had dinner at my parents! Busy and just a really good day.

Of course I stayed up too late that night and woke at 2.30am with regular contractions. Beau has been saying that I’d wait too long to tell people and end up having a home birth (which I *do not want*), so after a manageable hour I called my midwife and she said to call my parents (Sweets minders), wake Beau and have a shower. Ayai and Da (my Mum and Dad) arrived and hung out watching me for a bit before the midwife arrived. I DO NOT LIKE just being watched in labour. Would rather be on my own! Anyway, she observed me and did an exam and told me I was *not* in actual labour. Still latent labour. Baby well down, but no dilation. Call her when it got more intense, nothing would probably happen until midmorning and at least I’d be able to have breakfast with my parents. Le sigh.

Mum and Dad were already asleep in our bed, so Beau curled up on the bigger couch and I mooched around distracting myself from contractions until I decided to try down and have a sleep too. It must have slowed down or something, I think I did manage to doze between some anyway. Eventually, I just couldn’t stay lying down through them anymore. I had to get up. Was feeling a bit nauseous and that I needed the loo too. Headed to toilet and Sweets woke up. She’d obviously had a good nights sleep and was pleased to see me up and about. I could *not* deal with her. Shuffled her into the master bedroom (where my parents were) and then did *not* make it to toilet to vomit. Hid in bathroom for a while being sick while I heard Mum take Sweets to the loo and then into bedroom. I then went into bathroom and had 3 strong contractions. Noticed that bearing down made it feel better. Past time to call the midwife and go to hospital.

Bleargh. Sitting still in a car while in active labour is *not* fun. At least there isn’t much traffic at 7.15am on a Sunday. Got into the delivery suite about 7.35 and ordered Beau to start filling the bath asap. I wanted the water to help with the pain relief. It seemed much more intense than when I laboured with Sweets! When there were contractions I found taking small swift steps and lightly rubbing my lower back helped. I didn’t want solid counter pressure at all. This wasn’t conducive to exams, but midwife did manage to check my and babies pulse (all fine) and did an exam. 5-6cm dilated.

Into the bath I went. MW wanted to put a line into my wrist (just in case). This had been vaguely discussed before, but I really didn’t want it. I found the line one of the most annoying things with Sweets, although in that case it was attached to a drip. It meant I couldn’t move as freely and after the birth, as it was right on the bend of my wrist, I struggled to pick Sweets up! Anyway, I’d talked to Beau a few nights before about how he was my support person and I was counting on him to ask about the necessity of interventions etc when they came up. He could see that I didn’t want it, but that I’d go along with it and when he asked if it was really necessary I immediately put my hands back into the water. No line!

I soon started to push. Yikes, it was all so much faster and more intense than my labour with Sweets! MW struggled to get me to change positions so that she could check heartbeats etc. She then reminded me that I didn’t want a water birth, so I needed to get out. No Dice. I wasn’t moving anywhere. My waters broke and I started to feel “the Ring of Fire”. I said such inane remarks as “My waters just broke!” and “I didn’t feel this last time!!” (after over 2 hours of pushing Sweets hadn’t crowned, so I ended up with a spinal epidural, a trial by forceps and a big healthy girl). I thought of how I’d read that waterbirths had better outcomes for the perineum and since I was feeling that stretch really quickly, I didn’t want to risk it by getting out. Plus, there was no time and it hurt. MW then said I just had to do one good big push and the head would come out. What??!! Surely not this quickly and it hurt. I held my breath and pushed 3 times, once for the head, once for the shoulders and once for the rest of her. Then I heard the cry and felt them put my baby on me. Suddenly changing positions was a great idea so that I could hold and see my little girl. 8.05am. Quick, huh!

After some skin to skin in the bath, Beau cut the cord, they injected me with syntocinin, we got out and went to the bed. She soon latched on and began a mammoth feeding session. Meanwhile, third stage of labour occurred (again a new experience for me, last time I felt nothing due to the epidural, this time… it was like giving birth to a jellyfish. Or at least I imagine that’s similar). It turned out I had a 2nd degree tear, so stitches were required. *Now* I wanted pain relief. Tried out the gas. Not sure that it made too much difference, but it made my voice humourously deep and while I could still feel a stinging as the needle went in and out (they’d given me a local too, but apparently it can be hard to anesthetise the skin), I didn’t feel the need to flinch or move or do anything except idly complain.

Mowgli was still feeding btw. She fed for about an hour! Which meant that we called our parents and told them she was a she, but couldn’t tell them how much she weighed as they were waiting until she’d finished feeding. Born a week early (which is still term), she weighed in over 600g less than her big sister. No wonder the birth was faster! She is a little blonde sweetie and her big sister adores her. Milk came in on Day 2. I have yet to suffer from baby blues and 8 days after birth she is bigger than her birth weight. I suspect that by the time she reaches what would have been the same gestational age as Sweets was, she will be a big as Sweets.

Next post will hopefully be about Sweets reaction to her.

Current Obsession: My two gorgeous girls
Point of Fashion: BF friendly funeral attire

Lead up to Christmas

I find Christmas stressful. Have for ages. Mostly because I feel there are a lot of expectations around it, mine as well as others. There is a “thing” in my family about me being terrible to gift for as if I don’t like a gift, I can’t hide it.

I seriously don’t like useless gifts. It could be useless because it’s an ornament (like, I like vases much more than statuette thingies, because they have an actual use as a flower receptacle), or it could be useless because I have more of them than I could ever need (platters. Seriously. Beau and I both got given them as gifts in the years leading up to our wedding and then we got given a whooooole bunch more), or it could be useless because I dislike it so much I would never use it (best example is this pink plastic remote control jewellery box I got given for my 21st, it didn’t work well and it didn’t fit my jewellery + it’s pink plastic). The thing that makes me hate useless gifts the most though, is that I cannot bring myself to get rid of them as someone *gave* it to me. So I end up storing/hoarding things I don’t like and then resenting them for taking up space that could be used for things I do like. What makes useless gifts worse is when they come from people who love and care for me, because then I get into this angst spiral of “I thought they *knew* and loved me, but they can’t do as they gave me something so wrong. So, they don’t know me at all and I shouldn’t care so much but I though they *knew*…. ad infinitum”. Then throw in the fact that I know this is stupid and that I am just being ungrateful. Dude!!! People love me enough to give me stuff, why can’t I just be happy???!!

It also works the other way too. Because of how I feel about “wrong” gifts, I worry that I could give wrong gifts to others! This isn’t so bad in my direct family as we’re pretty good about saying what we want and then I can just get them that and then a little something (like chocolate) added in. However, I went and married this guy who is one of 7 children. Yup. And they all buy each other presents. Except of course, I can’t leave Beau to buy presents for his sibs as he puts stuff off so much that he’ll be buying everything on Christmas Eve morning and the cost will be out of control and I’d still end up wrapping stuff, plus when he got them something weird, I’d partly responsible even if it was ALL HIM. Although they’re all so nice they’d actually like it anyway. So, I end up buying stuff for his family or at least helping him (in previous years, when it’s been up to him and he’s left it to the last minute and can’t find the *right* thing and is stressing out and putting down any suggestions I make, until we walk through another 4 stores mad with last minute shoppers and he can’t find anything better and we end up having to go back to the place where I suggested something, I start to hate him a little and even me getting to be right doesn’t help). It’s horrible.

So, this year I decided I would start early and make stuff, useful. Of course that whole starting early thing didn’t work out too well, but I did make a plan of various things I could make and that they’d all probably like and what was involved in the making.

So far I have made, a christmas tea blend, a spicy hot chocolate blend and some preserves. Today I also went out and bought fruit for more preserves. I think each will just get one jar. Each of the sibs should get 1 jar tea, 1 jar hot chocolate and 1 jar preserves, even if they don’t personally like them, they can offer them to visitors who come over. Plus, after researching on the internet I bought something else (small but I could see them all using it) to add to each set. I should also have enough spare jars of stuff that friends and extended family we see over the holiday period can get a jar of something too 🙂 I’m pretty happy with what I’ve made, but as you can see, I can’t bring myself to just give them that. I really should value stuff I make more. I know I’m not the only one who finds that hard though!

Beau-mas can be extra hard too as previous years we have agreed on a one present per sibling/family and that it should be around $20 (although I’m pretty sure everyone was willing to pretend that anything up to $40 was got on sale for around $20). However, this rule was pushed for by someone who is now an ex and I can see that individual presents and more expensive presents are sneaking in again. In a lot of ways I wish we could agree on a secret santa type system where instead we could spend all the money we might on each of the sibs on one sibling/family combined and get them something really awesome and useful and potentially needful! I don’t see it happening though, as others love choosing and shopping.

Not to mention the hassle of trying to organise stuff for X-mas with an almost 2 year old, while 7months pregnant. Needless to say, it looks like Beau and I aren’t giving gifts to each other and neither have we bought anything for Sweets, for Christmas or her birthday. We kind of suck as parents I guess (although in the past month she has been given 2 aprons made by me as well as 2 finger puppets). Hopefully I’ll have time to shop or make something for her. Did I mention that Beau is working the 12 days up to Christmas Eve (which is his big family day anyway) and that this weekend he is doing 14 1/2 hour shifts + he is planning to go out 2 times this coming week. Helpful!

Anyway on to things I *will* make in the next two days (because otherwise the produce might go funny). Rhubarb and St$rawberry jam (because it’s the season and I want to taste it) from Ladies, a Plate and Rhubarb and Ginger Jam (because it is my go to jam, people love it, you can’t buy it and I only have one jar in the cupboard). Only sad thing is that while I appear to have a good crop of rhubarb, there isn’t really enough for me to jam up quite yet, so have to use bought. However, I’ll be gifting most of these batches away and mine should be ready then 🙂

Yesterday I made Feijoa and Cointreau Jelly. I pre-cut and froze feijoas back when they were in season. I was pretty preserved out by then, so this is my first chance to do something about it. Feijoa jelly is pretty much amazing and making it from frozen worked out fine, so if things next Feijoa season are crazy (what with having Mowgli and Sweets), I must find time to chop and freeze stuff for later. I must spread the jelly love 😉

Point of Fashion: very cold for one of the longest days of the year
Current Obsession: Is anybody out there?

So close to 2 ( and well in 3rd trimester)

Sweets continues to amaze and delight (as well as drive me to hair pulling and frustration, but you know).
This morning she had an imaginary friend! Mei from My Neighbour Totoro (Sweets’ favourite movie). She’s been into playing with her dolls etc for ages, feeding them and putting them to bed and taking them to the toilet etc, but this is the first time she’s played with something/someone that *wasn’t there*. It was pretty adorable and she carried Mei on her back (“back pack”) on the journey to Playcentre, but once we got out there was no more mention of Mei.

We also had a shared birthday party for Sweets this weekend past. As Sweets would say “Ovvy party, E-yo party, Mama party”. Eyo is Sweets’ friend who is 4 days older than her. They get along really well, which is awesome as his Mum and I get along really well too. It was pretty much just friends with kids (plus Sweets’ local relatives). We hired Playcentre for it, filled up the Kai table and just let the kids play. The only organised thing was the cake (Eyo was awesome at blowing out the candle, Sweets made me blow out hers). It was nice and chillaxed. I think future birthday parties shall be like this too!

Eyo’s mum and I wanted to have food that was easy, but also not just chips and colouring and sugar. I provided:
chocolate cake
asparagus and bacon in puff pastry
cheese rolls
1 packet of salt and vinegar chips because I LOVE THEM

A did:
orange cake
fruit platter (grapes, strawberries, watermelon)
cheerios w tomato sauce
rice wheelie things (they’re chippy-like, but puffed rice)
fairy bread

We also made a “juice” made up of drained tinned fruit, blended and mixed with sparkling water. Plus my Mum made fresh spring rolls.

It worked out well. The party was really just a morning tea 10-12, so we didn’t feel pressure to provide too much food. Sweets probably spent a good half of the party at the Kai table happily munching away and socialising. Even though all the food was eaten, I’m sure we could have gotten away with less. Some parents spent a fair amount of time grazing too. The cakes and cupcakes didn’t come out until about 11.20 when we sang “Happy Birthday” etc. I’d thought it would just be cupcakes for the kids, but interestingly the older kids (3-5) really felt like they had to have a Piece of Cake. It was a requirement. Even though the cupcakes were exactly the same recipe and had icing and sprinkles too.

Another thing we took into account re:catering was that one of our attendees was allergic to eggs, so we were egg-free. Luckily the cake recipe A and I use is super easy and while egg (and dairy) free, it is not at all sugar-free and tastes great!

Now to remind myself for next time, Asparagus and Bacon puff pastries:

Puff Pastry
Streaky Bacon

1) Cut a puff pastry sheet in half, place 2 pieces of bacon and 1-2 bits of asparagus on each half.
2) Roll up and cut into 4-5 pieces.
3) Repeat until you run out of something. (You can now put in fridge until about 45min before serving, I prepped the day before)
3) bake in preheated oven until all puffed up and brown.
4) enjoy the taste and the compliments.

One last thing, I don’t recommend having even a chillaxed toddler party when in third trimester. I recommend staying at home and resting as much as possible. Do as I say, not as I do!!

Mowgli is a good little wiggler. Measuring slightly large for dates, head down and apparently not giving me gestational diabetes.

Point of Fashion: not PJs or trackpants!
Current Obsession: Christmas. Also, does Beau really think he can get away with doing *NOTHING* to prep for it. SERIOUSLY????

One and 3/4 and also 23 weeks

So, where have I been these last few months? There was over a month of illness. Sweets, Beau and I were all sick at various times with various degrees of sickness. Sweets had a fever at one stage that left her all lethargic, all she wanted to do was “Cuddle Mummy” and drink nom and blob. We let her watch movies in this time, which is how she was introduced to Studio Ghibli! Jazzmaster Sv and Star lent us My Neighbour Totoro and Kiki’s Deliver Service and Sweets loved them both. In the worst of her illness I think she watched each at least once a day! We weaned her off them and managed to return them, however I suspect she may get copies at Christmas or Birthday.


I was extra sick thanks to morning sickness! Yup, as the title implies there is a 23week old (or really 21 week old) creature growing and wriggling inside of me. I get major fatigue in the first trimester, plus vomiting. I went through a big phase of feeling like a bad parent to Sweets as I just wasn’t able to look after her the way I normally do. There was a week when I was sick, but she was well and she spent a night at my parents and went out on multiple playdates without me. The cold/flus I caught (we got 2 back to back) also morphed into a cough which hung around for about 4 weeks. Bacterial infection we think and I probably should have gone to doctors and gotten antibiotics, but I didn’t. Anyhoo, I suspect without this my “morning sickness” would have finised a *lot* earlier. However what actually occured was I would start having a coughing fit, I would have to run to the toilet (pregnancy hormones loosening up + having given birth not *that* long ago do not make awesome pelvic floor muscles) and then as the cough kept going it would then trigger vomiting. Man, life is glamourous.

I went through a pretty low mental health time around then. Feeling unwell/tired wasn’t helped by me also feeling a bit gross by all this stuff going on with my body and managing that also fed into a major trackpants slob hermit phase (what’s the point of wearing anything nice when Sweets will mess it up?). Which of course fed back into feeling low (I look blah, I don’t want to see anyone, noone wants to see me). Ah, vicious mental cycles. Also, my SPD started up again. Also, I forgot, there was a death in the family and my Mum went to Thailand for a bit over 3 weeks leaving me without one of my major supports. This is of course when I fell ill + Beau was working a week of nights followed by a week of long days. Ah, when it rains, it pours. All over you.

Anyway, I eventually got healthy, the morning sickness waned, my Mum came back and everything just seemed to get a bit easier. One pretty awesome thing that occured was that my Mum decided one day that she wouldn’t be bringing Sweets home after taking her out one afternoon. Instead she would keep her overnight. I laughed as my Mum is a soft touch with Sweets and can’t get her to sleep. However, apparently if you keep Sweets up long enough she will eventually go to sleep and Mum was willing to do that. Nice! Sweets started staying over with them about once a week and it is such a great break for me (and Beau).

One big positive from Mum being away when I was so vulnerable was that Dad stepped up in a big way. He came over most mornings (often then going to work) and entertained Sweets letting me have a bit more of a sleep. It also really improved their relationship. Mum is so keen on Sweets that she hogs her a bit, so Dad hadn’t gotten to know her as well (plus Mum frequently came over on her own in the day just to play). It is so cool seeing Sweets develop these relationships with my family. It makes me feel like my siblings (all 3 overseas currently) are missing out though.

Woo! This post has become a longer lot more complainy that I originally meant.

Some things I want to remember:

Sweets is saying and doing so much cool stuff.
Blocks: She is really into building “Castles” and houses. On her own, she isn’t too good, but can stack things quite high and sorts out various types. She likes it when others build with her and she gets to add to them. She also loves putting other toys amongst them (making it their houses). Dad, Da Ja, has also instigated imaginary play with her, pretending the various blocks are drinks/food etc. Another day he’d made several little house for various animals and then had them visiting one another. Recently Beau’s siblings were in town and Sweets got to play with her older (3 and 4) cousins. They were busy building blocks too and let her join in 🙂

Music: She loves nursery rhymes and sings to herself. About a month ago her favourite song was Wheels on the Bus. She especially loved the Mama’s on the bus saying Shh, Shh, Shh and the children/babies going Up and Down. One morning I heard her wake up and begin singing, when I looked over to her she was bobbing up in down in her cot with “Up and Down” “Babies on Bus, Up and Down” etc. So cheerful! The favourite then moved on to Goosey Goosey Gander. You’ll also find her singing parts of the theme songs to Totoro and Ponyo (she’ll bare her own belly for “Round Tummy”). Most recently she’s been loving a mash-up between Jingle Bells and Hot Cross Bun? She serenaded me with it the other morning in bed.
“Jingle Bell, Jingle Bell, Jingle Bell Way, Hot Cross Bun, Hot Cross Bun, penny, Jingle Bell” (and continue). We have a tape we play in the car and Mum plays her a few tapes at hers. Beau found the theme songs on youtube and shows them to Sweets on his phone. She also demands/requests various songs and loves going through her various nursery rhyme books (has done this for ages). Now at the stage where she turns to pages she recognises and starts the rhymes/songs herself!

Talking/Communication: Talking and talking! It takes a parent to understand much of what she says, but her vocabulary just increases in leaps and bounds. Months ago Beau and I were very impressed when he had cut some plum for her and she observed it was shaped like a chair. “Chair, chair!” She then continued to point out “Mama’s chair, Dada’s chair, Ovvy (her name for herself)’s chair). The first 4 word sentence I recall hearing was I think a couple of months ago “Cat come miki’s house?”. She also occasionally talks in her sleep, one night as Beau was going to bed he heard “Go feed ducks”. The next morning when I was dressing her she talked about feeding ducks too! Other fun phrases “Mushroom Bucket, growing growing. Eat it Eat it!”, “I had a good nap”.

Hair: For a long time, Sweets has been fascinated with my hair. I think it started with her love of animals and their tails. When I have my hair in braids she loves to pull on them and stroke the ends or even brush them on her face. Sometimes when she is sleepy she will demand “Tail!” or now “touch hair”. She also wants to brush it. The other day I was on the computer and Sweets had a little brush in her hand and kept scrambling behind me. It was a bit of a game, she found it hilarious when I took it off her and moved it away. Back she would come! After a few goes of this I rounded on the little giggler and she declaimed “Ratbag!”.

Empathy: Sweets gets upset when others are unhappy. It’s quite cute hearing her telling me that someone else is sad eg “Sammi Cai” (she can’t quite manage the r in Cry). While I was ill she would get very upset with me closing the door to the toilet, but I didn’t want her to see me vomiting as sometimes then she would try and copy me! Plus, I don’t ever want people watching me vomit. Another day I was very tired and upset and having a bit of a cry. Up she comes to me saying “Mummy cai” then she cuddles me and says “Sorry, sorry”. Oh, my little pea.

New baby: This new baby is currently being called Mowgli (or Mow-gi, if you’re a small who has trouble with “L’s”). Sweets talks about baby Mowgi and gives my belly pats, cuddles and kisses. We’ve also talked about how she will have to share with Mowgli. I’m sure she doesn’t truly understand, but I am reassured by how she does love babies. She “helped” change her 1 week old cousin’s nappy a few weeks ago. She’d watched him getting changed by Beau earlier and then he did a poo almost immediately (new borns!) and then when he was getting changed again, she pulled a wipe out of the box and wiped his bottom and then handed the nappy to his (very impressed) mum.

Toileting: She’s been out of nappies for a month!! It was actually a bit anticlimactic. Basically Beau and I had to just toughen up and trust her. Not many accidents (it works out a bit over 1 a week including overnight) so it is all very manageable. I remind myself that while it seems easy now, we did actually lay the ground work a looong time ago.

Other headings I should probably write under, Animals, favourite toys, friends.

Hopefully will find the time to do this before another 4 months passes!

I am a proud Mama and do love my smalls a lot.

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Awesome 17 month old

Sweets turned 17 months a few days ago and she is just so sweet and funny and awesome right now. You know, objectively speaking 😉 Here are some reasons I think so.

Communication: She is talking more and really trying to get thoughts across. She’s finally started to use animal types rather than just their sounds, and her voice is so cute.
eg what has been for *months* “woof woof” is now “Dok-u”. Cats were “ow ow” and are now “meow” as well as “Cat”. “Tai-ga” (tiger) and “Pan-na” (panda) are new too. She is also trying to say lots more names, interestingly, she is more interested in the names of other children than their parents (E-yo for Leo, Mi-mi for Mika, Shi-shi for Sienna). Beau and I are still Da-da and Mama (or Mum-mum) respectively. She still doesn’t seem interested in saying her own name at all.

Sweets is very good at saying “ba-bye” to people. Most mornings we say “ba-bye” to Beau and wave at him from a window as he heads off too work. Often later in the day she will mention him “Da-da?” and I will say something like “Da-da has gone to work”. Reply “Ba-bye”.

New words include, “fo-k” fork, “Peese” please, “ca-cae” cup cake, “preem” cream, “pis-kii” biscuit. If she sees a treat she wants, you get a big stream of “ca-cae, peeese, peese, ca-cae, ka” along with bowing and wai-ing. This is because I’ve been teaching her to say Please and “khop khun ka” (thank-you in thai, which goes with a wai), when someone gives her something. Thus, she has learned this is the behaviour that gains her goods!

She also is determined to communicate. She will frequently keep saying a word at you, until you say the actual word, then she relaxes. Often it is something she can see. An example from earlier this week was when we were at the table and Sweets kept saying “ta-ta, ta-ta”. I couldn’t understand what she wanted. Then I realised she was trying to say “tahngkaya” (rubbish bin). I was folding up an empty biscuit packet in my hands and she was telling me it would go in the the rubbish bin!

Memory: It’s been over a month since Muggle left, but earlier this week, we went on a trip to drop off her laptop at a friend’s. Sweets saw it and immediately said “Na Ma” (her name for Muggle). She is also talking about stuff she saw earlier in the day, like today when I was BFing her before bed, she kept popping off to say “bubba?”. We’d been to visit a friend with her new baby today and Sweets just wanted to talk about it. I told her how we’d visited them and how she’d cuddled the baby. “ca-el”(cuddle) she said in agreement along with doing a rocking motion. She then said “cup” and I replied, “that’s right, you saw I’s cup and you had a drink from your cup too”. She was satisfied with this and went back to her milk.

Eating: She continues to be good with her eating and is getting really good with spooning up stuff to feed herself. Surprisingly tidy really. She is a bit more discriminating with what she eats now and won’t put just anything in her mouth, eg, when she was littler she’d have a go at a bit of salad, even though she couldn’t break it down. Not so interested in that now. She is *really* keen on dipping stuff (“dip-dip”). It’s partly my fault as I dip biscuits in my tea. Today she ate most of a small bowl of yogurt by dipping a biscuit in it and licking it off. Funny monkey.

Toileting: Sweets is doing pretty amazingly with EC. For the past few weeks a “bad” day would mean 2 or more nappies, an average day would be 1 nappy and a good day ZERO nappy changes. She still wears a nappy almost all of the time, but she seems to be better at holding on, or else I’m better at taking her to the toilet at the right time? She has also sometimes telling us when she wants to go by making a sign (hers is right index finger pointing into palm of left hand) and saying “sheee” (our toileting word). She was doing this earlier (13-14months), but the sign and sound she made then were different (index fingers pointing together and more like “tsss, tsss”). However she hadn’t done it for a while, it’s cool that she is telling us again.

Physical stuff: She is sooo good at going up and down stairs and walking and generally scrambling around the place. If we are holding hands she feels confident enough to run. Sometimes she thinks it is fun to crawl again or even just roll around on the ground! She really enjoys tickling, both doing it to others and having it done to her. Sadly she has a bit of eczema which she keeps irritating by scratching, however, she loves putting creams on. So much so that she asks for it “preems?”! She can open a tube (uses her teeth), but is still stumped by jars.

Other stuff: She has been going through a bit of a hitting phase, if she is getting frustrated with someone (eg one baby doll, two toddlers…) then she will hit them and say “Ow, ow, ow”! Luckily she doesn’t hit very hard and it seems to be less frequent now. She knows that she should be gentle and will demonstrate that too (gentle pat and a kiss). Today we saw several small babies and she was soo interested in them. Kept going over and touching them (nice and gently) and saying “bubba”.

She also loves baby dolls. There are lots of them at Playcentre and she is really into playing with them, putting them to sleep in cots, putting them in highchairs and pushing them around in pushchairs (a favourite activity). At playcentre she can combine two of her loves, baby dolls and water. She will happily bathe the dolls for up to 20 min (ages for a toddler). Of course, there is normally more than one doll and she takes them in an out of the water and drinks the water and splashes etc.

Last week I made her a little felt monkey and she really likes it. I wasn’t sure if it looked monkey-y enough, but as soon as she saw it she said “ah-ah” (monkey noise). She can easily hold it in one hand and likes putting it in and out of pockets (hers or other peoples). Sometimes asking where? (using arms and hands) when it is hidden and then gleefully pulling it out. She cuddles and kisses it and has even put it on me for a feed! She likes it so much it’s missing somewhere in the house… must go and find it.

If I think of more stuff, i might put it in the comments. I want to remember this and I also know my sisters, both overseas, will want as many details as possible! Must tell my brother that she loves the dolly he gave her and has it in her cot. She is the one who decided that it is called Dodo (I think because I refer to it as her dolly, different vowel sound though_. She asks for it when it is bedtime and pats and cuddles it.

Point of fashion: Not fussed
Current Obsession: baking, done so much in the last two weeks. We are out of flour.

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Unexpected 48

The weekend just been was that of the 48hr Film Competition. I’ve participated in this several times as an active member of Jenni’s Angels, a team originally formed by Jenni. Anyhoo, what with Sweets being a toddler and Beau frantically studying for an exam, I wasn’t as free to participate as much as I would like this year. However, I did my best to clear Saturday in case they got Musical/Dance and needed my happy feet and confident vocals.

Friday night came and Sweets was out of wack due to Playcentre (it makes her nap later in the day and also tires her out so she has a really big nap). I wasn’t going to be able to get to the group brainstorm until well after 8.30pm. By this time I had found out their genre (Road Trip) and knew they weren’t going to need me. Not only that but the writers were already off, so brainstorm was over before I could have arrived. I decided to stay at home and chill with Beau instead.

Saturday came and it was my Mum’s birthday. She was planning to go to temple and was keen for me to come. I was keen too! If I’d been cast the plan was for Mum to go on her own and then come to ours to fetch Sweets. Beau would have been in charge of Sweets during the morning. As it was Sweets and I went to temple with Mum and it was really good.

When we got home, Beau told me to check my cell and that wyldcard had been trying to reach me. There was a role for me in his team (Red2 Productions)! Sweets and Mum both went down for a nap. I gathered various potential outfits (apparently I was to play a wedding mad girlfriend) and headed to the shoot.

The shoot was fun. It was smaller than Jenni’s Angels shoots typically are, but it was upbeat and pretty well organised. They’d had a bit of an issue with an actor pulling out (hence me joining after midday on Sat), but had soldiered on and it worked out with me in the end. I did a pretty solid job with the acting, but I’m most proud of some of the stuff I did “backstage”. Basically my attitude when not “busy” was What can I do to help out? What can I do that frees up those with more important jobs (eg wyldcard and Jarratt).

Things I did:
I made the Yeti sandwich!
I began to make coffee, but then delegated to wyldcard’s dad 😉
I foresaw a problem with shoot order and outside lighting (namely that we had to shoot an outdoor scene while it was still daytime) and also came up with the solution (do my bedroom scene later, do outdoor scene now).
I dropped off lead actor to his job while another scene was being filmed. Wyldcard was going to do this! He’s director?!!
When there was a discussion of going into town to film a scene and then back into Hutt later in the evening to do another, I pointed out that we could do both in town saving travel and set up time.
I girlied up wyldcard’s room (Jarratt later told me I was good at set dressing, which is probably one of the nicest and most unexpected compliments I’ve had in ages).
I bought pretzels and set out glasses for poker.
I went on a coffee run.
I was She Who Solved Problems 🙂

I also realised that I’m getting typecast. In all the short films I’ve been in recently, if I get a speaking role, I also get filmed sleeping, unconscious or dead… Hmmm.

Point of Fashion: sensible and warm
Current Obsession: 48 films. Want to see them!!!