What do you do when your baby boy decides the car is suddenly a boring place to be? Couple that with what looks like the start of separation anxiety and we have an interesting (or not!) car journey on our hands.
This week was no different to the usual. One sunny-ish day I decided it would be lovely to visit Grandma who lives about half an hour away. Now, normally baby boy gets very excited to be in the car and I’ve spotted him straining his neck to see all the colours and wonderous landmarks, trees and general traffic that we pass on out journey. Halfway, he will drop off to sleep. Good baby! No fuss.
This week was different though. We had the normal excitement when I strapped him into the car seat, but it was short lived. I could the hear the beginnings of baby whinging when I got out the car to put petrol in and ended up playing dramatic peekaboo through the car window. Have you ever played peekaboo on a petrol courtyard and then paid the cashier whilst avoiding all manner of eye contact?
Once I got back in the car I was lulled into a false sense of happy baby babbling security and tootled off on my half hour journey. About 10 minutes in, after joining the motorway, the “pick me up, I’m bored” cries started. Uh oh… What to do? Radio 1 didn’t seem todo it for him, neither did any other type of music! After what felt like an eternity of what was actually about a few minutes I took the first available exit and parked up frazzled but safely.
Then it came to me, like a blue and red blanket cladded flash. I whipped out my iPhone and started the In the Night Garden app. Instantly, there was silence. And then a contented smile the cheeky monkey. There was nothing for it but to drive the rest of the way with the bloody theme tune playing for a good 10 minutes, till it lulled him to sleep. And me? All I could picture for the remaining journey was Iggle Piggle running around with his damn red blanket. I hope this is a phase!
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This week I went to work. One of those keeping in touch days (or KIT). I’ve been in two minds throughout my whole maternity leave about whether I want to go back to work or not. I crave the regular adult interaction again but equally don’t want to leave my baby, especially as he seems to be in transition to a wild cub phase. I still have a few months to decide so I won’t worry too much about it yet.
I did however use this trip as a bit of a dry test run to see how long it’d take to get myself and baby, fed and ready out of the house. I thought I’d roughly time it as well so that if and when the the time comes, myself and hubby can synchronise bathroom and mirror times smoothly.
Roughly, it went something like this
8:00 Alarm goes off. Wake with crick in neck from sleeping hanging off bed after baby has joined us in bed at 6am.
8:01 Leap out of bed remembering I am going to work today. Place sleeping baby back in cot, pray he stays asleep and grab all night bottles, thermos and baby feed in an attempt to speed up sterilising process
8:02 Attempt to walk downstairs quickly and quietly with arms full of feed stuff. Watch in movie mode slow motion as bottle slips from hand and bounces down the steps.
8:10 Sterilise bottles, have quick “functional” shower and change baby nappy is now wide awake and babbling loudly for attention
8:20 Get dressed, decide I hate tent like top, curse self for buying hideous thing in sale and through desperately through wardrobe for something to wear that is nice, will fit, and doesn’t need ironing. Wave a sock at baby to try to entertain him. Babble loudly back at baby when sock doesn’t work.
8:23 Apply makeup, being generous with under eye concealor.
8:25 Apply even more under eye concealor. Decide I look mostly awake and that’ll do.
8:28 Rush downstairs with baby attached to hip thinking of an easy baby breakfast. Decide on porridge and toast.
8:30 Strap baby into chair, attempt to feed baby who has clamped mouth shut. Put cbeebies in vain hope baby’s mouth will unclench. Find this only succeeds in baby going into cbeebies trance. Change channel wave toy above head. Watch baby spit out porridge, spraying rug in process, but enjoy toast. Phew. Try a yoghurt, which works.
8:45. Wash Babys face, put jacket on and strap into car seat. Pack bottles and feeds.
8:46 Carry out a 30 second “clean up” in living room. Spend another minute looking for damn toy that won’t stop singing
8:48 Locate toy, switch off and pile changing bag handbag and work laptop into car.
8:50 Feel impressed it took just under hour to get ready
8.55 Spot big baby food / sick stain on jeans. Sigh.
Not too bad huh?