Is it just my baby that sounds like a Pterodactyl?

I remember the first time we properly made cub laugh. Not a smile, or a chuckle, but a proper belly laugh. He was teething, and so so so tired.  His cheeks were bright red and it was time for bed. He was 6 or 7 months old, I think.

For some reason, we thought dropping a plastic ball on his head was a good idea.  Don’t call social services, it was only a little one…. ahem. He erupted into the cutest fit of laughter, a slightly dirty and massively infectious chuckle, which we have captured on video forever and never ever get bored of watching back.

Now, something really bizarre has happened. The cute and slightly dirty laugh is now just plain dirty. Throaty, hoarse and staccatto, it sounds like a cross between a car engine backfiring, a machine gun, Catherine Tate’s Grandma, and some sort of dinosaur. Probably what I imagine a Pterodactyl might sound like.

It’s just weird. When he’s babbling and chatting away, he has the softest, gentlest baby voice. But when he laughs, it’s like he’s been possessed by a dirty old demon lady. Does this happen to other babies too? Will it go away? Please God, make it go away!

But in until he (please, please, please) grows out of it, we have found some amazing comedy use for the scary laugh. I was sitting on a bench in the local shopping centre sorting out my bags, and Cub was standing on the bench, holding onto the back, watching the people go by. And as people passed by, he was  laughing at them all, like a  fiendish dinosaur baby prince surveying his subjects. I have never seen so many people look so frightened, appalled and confused by someone so cute and small.

Old grannies approached him looking like they wanted to squeeze his cute little baby cheeks, and recoiled in horror at the machine gun chuckle. Grown men noticeably quickened their pace as they passed us by. I must admit, I might have been faffing about with the bags just a little longer than I needed to, because I was just too amused by the whole thing.

When life gives you lemons, make lemonade. And when your baby makes weird noises, go scare some people. Why the hell not?

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Hurrah, I broke my plateau! Then ate some pies.

About a month ago now, I posted that I was struggling with a weight loss plateau, and that I was aiming to break through it in two weeks.

I’d like to report that I did it! In those two weeks, I lost 4lb! I didn’t really do anything special, just a real back to basics approach- tracking what I ate religiously, cutting out processed food, and making sure I got enough exercise in.

Just goes to show that a little bit of focus can really pay off!

But then, I went on holiday! And, my god, did I take my eye off the ball! I ate far too much cake, too many big meals out, just too much of everything. And since getting back at the weekend, I’ve struggled to get back on the wagon, big style. The 4lb has gone back on… though I’m not totally despairing because it’s also time of the month for me right now. I’m attributing the gain to excess water and ignoring the level of pie consumption…

What I need is a cunning plan.

In 5 weeks, me and the husband are off to Rome.  Alone! With no cub! I am so excited I could actually squeal. So that’s my next milestone. I’d like to be 5lb lighter than I was 10 days ago, before I started stuffing my face again.

That will mean that I only have 3lb of baby weight to shift, and take me to a loss of 2st 3lb since 1st Jan.

This is me taking a deep breath and reluctantly getting back on the lettuce wagon. Sensible food and lots of exercise for just one month. How hard can that be?

Goodbye cake…. for now… but in 5 weeks time, bring on the gelato, pizza, and pasta!

Oh my god, I have a 13 month old!

This is a post for the “Live in the now, Dude!” linky hosted over at Scribbling Mum’s blog.  The idea is to capture how life is, right now.  So, this is what it’s like right now for me and my little man!

It wasn't me!

Cub has just turned 13 months.  He is a tiny baby whirlwind, and  his main hobby at the moment is destruction.  In the past 24 hours, he has pulled a pile of DVD’s off a shelf, emptied a packet of baby wipes, thrown a tray full of food on the floor, terrorised a dog, and unravelled a toilet roll.

He is discovering cause and effect, and is massively into anything that makes a noise, anything with buttons that he can push, and anything that he can drop or throw (mainly food…) He likes to empty shapes out of a container, put them in again, and put the lid back on.

He has a little trumpet that he has just learned to blow, and looks so proud when he gets it to make a toot! And he loves to dance. That boy has got some serious moves! Every time he hears a beat, his little head bobbles about happily, as if it’s a reflex reaction to music. If he’s standing up, he’ll stamp his feet too! At the moment, he is particularly enjoying a bit of  Noah and the Whale!

He likes to play passing games. He offers you an object, saying “da!” then you take it and say “ta!,” then he takes it back, and offers it again with another “da!” He loves to play in his tent and his tunnel, though he uses the tent as a method of transport, pushing the walls to roll it over, like he’s zorbing!

He’s just started pointing at everything, and he loves to explore.  He is still very much in love with Boris, and he adores Spike, his Grandparent’s dog.  That poor old dog gets chased all over the house every weekend, when all he wants is a bit of peace. Yesterday he tried to grab the dog’s willy.  The poor dog looked horrified!! It would seem Cub has yet to develop a sense of social decency!

He’s a cheeky mimic, copying everything and everyone, trying to imitate speech, gestures and expressions. He chats constantly, and seems to pick up a new noise everyday, although the only real words he has as the moment are “da” (meaning “that”) “Mama” and “Da-doo” (He can’t make the “ee” noise yet, and sometimes, Da-doo becomes Doo-doo or Doo-Da!)

He is very affectionate and loves to give kisses, although sometimes there is just a tad too much tongue.  Daddy got 14 kisses in a row this weekend!

He’s  just on the verge of walking. Yesterday he took 5 unaided steps, but he’s still wobbly and lacking confidence. He is on his feet cruising a lot, but still loves to crawl, and is really speedy! He has started bear walking too, which is adorable.

Hopefully he will be walking in the next couple of weeks, although in a way I’m hoping he puts it off  a little longer. He’ll be so grown up then, and I’ll miss my little baby! But also, I fear this new era of walking could bring more destruction than ever!

Boot camp? Really???

For the last two Sundays, two of the hottest days that Britain has ever seen (this may be a slight exaggeration…) I have spent the morning sweating ungracefully at a boot camp. Yes, that’s a BOOT CAMP.

We have managed to wangle some regular Sunday morning babysitting, and the lovely husband suggested I join him at his weekly boot camp.  I have seen the state he’s in after his Sunday morning beatings, and it’s not pretty. But I said yes anyway, because I’m not a wuss. (I am a wuss. But don’t tell anyone.)

I am  not a boot camp kind of girl.

I don’t like being shouted at. I don’t enjoy competition (unless I am really, really, really good at something, like Guitar Hero, or poker.) I hate burpees. Don’t know what a burpee is? Have a look at this video. It’s the most evil exercise of all. And even worse if you’re carrying a little weight. Ahem. At boot camp, they are very fond of burpees. They make us do the ‘expert’ version with the jump:

So, the first week, me, the lovely husband, and his little brother rocked up for our beating.  Me and the little brother were bloody terrified.  We stood around nervously chatting for a bit, and I had that horrible nervous-in-the-pit-of-your-stomach feeling that you get before an exam.  The trainer leading the session bounced up with a freakish and worrying amount of energy, and explained the warm up. Basically, a four mile run, in scorching heat. We all plodded off, muttering miserably, and I set up camp at the back of the pack.

I won’t lie, it was hard. Normally, a four mile run wouldn’t bother me, but I was comparing myself to all the other people in the class, and realizing just how much work I need to do to get up to a really decent level of fitness.  And I was sweating like crazy.

It was an out and back route, and once the fastest runner got to the furthest point, we all turned back, so as to keep the group together.   I made it back in fourth place because I never stopped running, when at least half the class wilted in the sun and ended up walking. Suddenly, I wasn’t feeling too bad at all.

The rest of the first class involved hill sprints and burpees and squats. In the midday sun. Evil, evil, evil. And yes, I was the slowest in the class, but I gritted my teeth and kept going when others melted and gave up once again. I ended up knackered, but feeling like I’d achieved something.

So, this week, I went back for more.

Today, we did a hilly running circuit of 1/2 mile, followed by a series of burpees. Followed by another lap of 1/2 mile. Then more burpees. Repeat ad nauseum, quite literally.

I managed 7 laps. I am still the slowest runner in the class, but completed an average number of laps, because I kept going, at my own pace, didn’t walk once, didn’t stop ever.  At the end, the instructor said that I was “amazing,”  “a warrior” and “an inspiration.” I was chuffed to bits.

Do you know what? I am a warrior. A sweaty, bloody minded, girly warrior, carrying a little baby weight, bringing up the rear of the class, and not letting it stop me.

Maybe I am a boot camp kind of girl after all.

Mumra playlist- Week 9

I’ve never joined in with Mumra’s Playlist before, but I thought I’d give it a go this week- coming very late to it in week 9! Each week, Mumra sets a theme to inspire bloggers, who pick one of their favourite tunes for everyone else to listen to. Click the link at the bottom to listen to all the other entries!

This week’s theme is “This song reminds me of you”

I’ve picked the song that most reminds me of my husband.  It was our first dance at our wedding. I love the lyrics, and the video is so lovely. If you’ve never seen this before, please give it a watch, it’s so simple, and very emotional.

The song is “First day of my life” by Bright Eyes. Enjoy.

Mumra Playlist

The baby who ate everything…

Today, the cub and I went for a lovely afternoon in a local country park. I thought we could feed the ducks, play on the swings, and have some sandwiches and cake for tea.

At the park shop, they sold bags of bird seed for the bargain price of 30p. Cub has been having lots of fun throwing things lately, so I thought I’d try to get him to throw the bird seed to the ducks. I showed him how to do it, several times, and his little eyes lit up, and he goo’ed and gah’ed excitedly… I thought he was all ready to give it a go. I was very wrong… he actually grabbed a handful of seed, eyed it thoughtfully for a moment, and greedily stuffed it into his mouth.

It’s just seeds, right, how harmful can that be???

After trying to retrieve the seed from his mouth, I thought I’d continue trying to feed the ducks myself, so that he could see them waddling and quacking up close. Not a chance. After his first mouthful of that delicious bird seed, he’d got the taste for it, and tried to steal the bag back. Then he threw an almighty strop because the birds were getting the tasty seed and he wasn’t.

Duck feeding abandoned. Off to the playpark.

First we went on the swings (huge hit,) then the slide (met with mostly indifference.) Then I thought I’d let him have an explore.

This particular playground is all built on a giant sandpit, rather than squidgy flooring or grass. So, I set him down on the sand, expecting him to crawl off, play with the sand, or… something.

First he looked a bit confused by this new flooring. Then, he grabbed a huge handful of sand, and, quick as a flash, stuffed it in his mouth. I looked on in horror. You would think he would have cried, or looked disgusted, or spat it out, but no. He looked a little surprised by the texture, but was not put off. He grabbed another handful, and tried to eat that too. That one I did manage to intercept.

Play park abandoned. Off to the cafe.

I ordered a painini (for bloody six pounds bloody fifty) and a caramel shortbread, with the intention of us sharing both of them. I cut the sandwich into manageable strips, and the cake into cubes. And did he reach out eagerly and stuff them in his mouth? Nope. He played with a bit of cake, sucked it for a bit, and threw it on the floor. The sandwich was completely ignored. Obviously not sandy or seedy enough.

Good job he’s cute.

I think I’ve reached the good part…

Cub has just turned one, and I have to say, I am absolutely loving being a mum at the moment.

I make no secret of the fact that I found the first year really hard. For the first three or four months, he was colicky, refluxy, and generally fussy. That gave way at about four months, and we had a couple of lovely months when I started to get back the sanity that I thought I’d lost forever! Then we hit teething at six months, which seemed to continue for an eternity. At nine months, he started nursery, and picked up every bug going. Another two disastrous months with no sleep followed…

Don’t get me wrong, I would never say I didn’t enjoy the first year.  It was as amazing as it was difficult, and no matter how little sleep I’ve had, I would still do anything for the little man. But God, young babies are hard work! Really hard work!  There are people out there who think that the newborn period is the best. I regard these people with suspicion. I fear they have faulty memories- that, or nannies.

My newborn cried, a lot. I’m sure they all do. He was extremely cute, but you can’t really play with a newborn. You can’t even raise a smile for weeks! Tough crowd!

But now, he’s turned into a gorgeous, proper little person.  I sing, and he giggles. I dance, and he tries to copy me. He hears music, and he bobbles his head around like a nodding dog.  He waves and claps high fives, and he can say Mama. He squeals with happiness when we push him on the swing, and chuckles at the ducks on the pond. I’m sure he thinks dogs are strange little men doing a funny walk, and he laughs at every one that we see when we’re out.

He sees a goat and tries to climb it, because the world is a climbing frame….

He chats to himself constantly in his own language, and greets Mummy and Daddy with the biggest smiles. And he has his own, quirky little sense of humour. Light switches, animals, noses and tongues are all hilarious!

He has a personality all of his own. He is boisterous and energetic and curious. He is independent and loving and carefree.

Maybe I’m just not a tiny baby person. The first part was fascinating. But this is pure joy.