Thursday, March 26, 2015


At bedtime tonight just as the nightly reading is done and the lights are turned off, Aidan says in a hushed voice "there is a war going on in my class but my teacher  doesn't know about it." 

He goes on to explain that the boys in the class seem to be getting a little playfully rough with each other, "crushing" each other on purpose. Now Aidan is a not really a rough and tumble kind of kid. He has managed this far in life to avoid the boys when they are kicking about on the play mat in spite of fretting preschool teachers trying to pull them apart. So to Aidan is a big deal. He is apparently conjuring up tips and strategies from his friends on how to "battle" with the others. One kid has offered to train him up to be just like him, like an apprentice. Another has been conspiring with him to get a "bomb" or "campfire" into the classroom, both ideas he scoffed at, thankfully. 

My panic parent mode is trying hard to hold back from picking up the phone and calling his teacher to put a stop to all of this. But I can't, he is figuring it out on his own. So, in the style of trying not to lecture but I am voice, I reminded him that he doesn't need to change to be like anyone else and that he too has tips to share for his friends. And if something goes from fun play to hurting, yes, he knows. Tell them to stop. But what he didn't know was that he needed to say it like he says it to Tenley. That somehow clicked for him, he liked that. Eyes sparkling, smile on his face, he was again listening to me, even though it was at the expense of his sister. 

I may still call but I'll probably wait a day or two. 

Thursday, March 19, 2015

It's been a while since this blog was used but it's time to start again. Tenley is nearly 3 years old and Aidan now 6. It's amazing how quickly the years have gone by. That sounds cliche but it's so very true.

Aidan is an inquisitive, thoughtful, cautious guy. He is a collector, when he was younger it was of Thomas the train, and matchbox cars and after dabbling in transformers and teenage mutant ninja turtles, he has landed hard on Pokemon. It started happening just before Christmas. He received his first set of cards for his birthday and then the madness rolled in. Jason asked around at work and soon enough we have a collection of 300 or so waiting for him to earn as well as plenty floating around his his specific spots. He sleeps with Picachoo every night and just worked very hard to earn two more Pokemon stuffed animals. I can't even spell their names. I wonder if this will every fade away but I do remember his very one track mind with Thomas. He learned his colors thanks to James, the red engine, Percy the green one, and so on. We stopped tantrums instantaneously with re-told stories from the cartoon. We lulled him to sleep telling stories of the crew. Pokemon is a little harder to use given the unfamiliarity of it all. It's hard to pronounce the names and the rules for the game are so complex, I give up. Yet we can still break a night terror with recalling the names of his favorite. What next?

Yes, he still has night terrors every once in a while. Usually it's when he is tired or an illness is coming on. Other than that, he is an amazing sleeper. I remember many nights of disrupted sleep. I remember searching around frantically in the dark for his "nei nei", cussing under my breath at the importance of it all. I remember many drives around to get him to take a nap. The funny walking to bounce him to sleep. Yes, he wasn't great at sleeping until about 4. Then it just happened. Amazing.

Now if we are talking sleep, my mind goes immediately toward Tenley. She is my sleep stealer right now. She has been for the past 3 years. As of March 16th, she has finally ended nursing. It's only been a few days yet so I feel cautious about celebrating. But it is awesome to not be groped by her (as much) or to be awkwardly holding her for hours on end to make sure she keeps nursing and doesn't wake (so I could keep sleeping). I think her poor sleep is connected in part to the extended nursing but I also wonder if her snoring has something to do with it too. We'll be checking into that when we firmly establish that nursing is completely and utterly over.

She loves to be close to someone, especially me. We are certainly close and she makes it pretty clear that she prefers me to anyone else. I am sure that will change. I remember when Aidan started asking for his daddy and telling me that he loved his daddy more. heartbreaking. He was my little boy. Then suddenly he felt like he was telling me that he wasn't anymore. Tenley will do that to. I remind myself of that when I am exhausted by her shouting for me or fighting her daddy to be with me.

Tenley is a natural eccentric. She strikes a pose continuously throughout the day. She prefers dress up clothes or her swimsuit. She is in character a lot. A lot! And she is very determined. It's a battle of wills between us sometimes. usually about wearing the appropriate attire for the occasion. I hear myself saying ludicrous things like "no you can't wear your swimsuit to school today." or "you will have to take off your princess dress to fit your snow pants on. But you can wear the dress over it if you just put the snow pants on." There are other ridiculous things. Like "Please don't put Aidan's sock in your yogurt." She tinkers with things, constantly in things and messing around with them. She is the kid that draws on your walls with marker. She is the kid that sticks cheerios in her ear. She is the kid that immediately after telling her not to touch something she does. And she finds a way to get our attention.

I'm trying to guide both kids using their interests and strengths but it is hard sometimes. Tenley's characters have changed from just Disney princesses to real life heroines like Amelia Earhart and Frida Kahlo. Aidan's Pokemon craze pushes him to learn bigger words than he would be ready for like "earth" and "psychic". He practices his math skills constantly but also his assertiveness skills, especially when a friend wants to swap a card of his that he doesn't want to.

I wonder if I'm doing enough for them. Yet, I know that there is no perfect parenting and I certainly give them a lot. I'm sure they will talk about me in their therapy and I certainly hope they do. 

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Splash park

Liz took her life in her own hands - and her camera's - the other week by taking her kids and Aidan to the splash park in Middleton. Looks like they had a great time.

The water's pretty cold.

Isn't it, Sophie?

"Nah," says Allie.

That's warmer.

"Was this built for three?" say Sophie and Aidy.  "Who cares?" says Allie.

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Week two highlights

On Monday we went for a check-up at the doctor.  She wanted to check Tenley's weight, which was up to 7 pounds 13 ounces, more than her birth weight. Well done Tenley and well done mummy.

Mummy and Tenley

Aidy- Pre-haircut


Best friends. Unless they're not.

Grandma and Tenley

And with Frankie.

Char, Roby, Amelia and Frankie came down on Tuesday. It was bedlam. You'd think four adults could cope easily with four kids. Well, it was more difficult that we thought it would be. Good fun though.

Sunday, June 3, 2012


Tenley's been practicing her hiccups. She got so good recently I think she can now stop. Aidy and Tenley both had hiccups while they were inside Erin. And Tenley has kept them up, especially when I sit down with her for some cuddle time.

She's pretty loud with them too.

We had a different kind of hiccup on Friday evening, too.

Since we came home from the hospital Erin would start the evening with Tenley, feeding every two hours or so and then around 3 a.m. I would take over trying to help Tenley sleep and stave off her hunger as long as possible, giving Erin a few hours to sleep on her own.

But Aidan developed a fever. We gave him some medication and he went to bed but a few hours later, just as Erin and I were ready to sleep, he was up, hot and uncomfortable.

We brought him downstairs for a while, put cold cloths on his head and feet, and soothed him.  A few episodes of Thomas the Tank Engine helped, too.

The plan changed and Erin took Tenley. I took Aidan. It was man-on-man defence. Thankfully, after cluster feeding from 9 p.m. - 12 a.m. Tenley slept for four hours. I kept an eye on Aidan. He woke up a few times but all in all it could have been a lot worse.

It made for a tired Saturday but recovery is happening.

Saturday, June 2, 2012

First video

Here she is...

Eyes wide open

Up until now there have been no uploads of Tenley with open eyes, even though she has them open a lot. 

Just hold me

Remind you of anyone?