Tuesday, 24 March 2015

Our first holiday as a foursome

We've just got back from our first family holiday as a foursome, little F's very first time away.  We went to Cornwall, one of my all time favourite places, and stayed at Retallack Resort and Spa, near Padstow.

We were pleasantly surprised at how luxurious our lodge was. The beds were so comfy, there was plenty of space for M to run about, and the kitchen was really well fitted, with every utensil provided and the luxury of granite worktops.

Mummy and Daddy's bed was sooo much more comfy than my travel cot!

We had plumped for a lodge with a private hot tub in the decked outdoor space, and this didn't disappoint either.  We used it most days, and M absolutely loved splashing about in it.  This was how M and I spent Mother's Day afternoon.

Guarding ice creams against the greedy seagulls at Padstow
Catch of the Day at Stein's Deli
As the weather was pretty kind to us (although it was still quite chilly, being March), we managed to spend a bit of time exploring the local beaches.  We bought M a bucket and spade and a fishing net and went off to Watergate Bay, to build sandcastles, kick footballs, furtle about in the rock pools and climb the rocks.  It was a little too cold for F, so we couldn't stay out too long, but it was great to get some sea air in our lungs. 

We had a great meal at the Watergate Bay Hotel one lunchtime.  What an amazing hotel this is!  I've definitely got this one bookmarked for some time in the faraway future for me and the Two Boy Daddy.

Delicious food at the Watergate Bay Hotel

Aardman's various animations are a real favourite in our house so we went to Land's End for the Shaun the Sheep Experience.  It was fun to see some of the real props and sets, and to get some silly photos next to the characters.

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We also tried out the King Arthur exhibition (which was not pushchair friendly and very scary for three year olds!) and the 4D film about dinosaurs.  F was a little unsettled and I was trying to breastfeed him while my cinema seat was lurching about, air was being puffed up from the floor and bubbles were landing on us.  Talk about extreme breastfeeding!  We had to leave the other two to it.  M was a little difficult though on this day (I think we'd left it too long before we had lunch), so our visit to Land's End ended with everyone feeling irritable, but we soon got our holiday moods back on.

We also spent some time in St Ives, which is a special place for me and the Mr, as it's where we spent a lot of time on our very first holiday together.  We retraced our steps and salivated at all the restaurant menus where we can now no longer visit! M bought a cuddly Elmo with his holiday money, and was most proud when he handed over his money to the shop assistant.

St Ives: our special place

This holiday saw F take his first dip in a swimming pool.  As we expected from his enthusiasm for bathtime, he really enjoyed the pool and being led about in his yellow boat.  Two Boy Daddy and I got a treat: we had a massage each included in our holiday booking.  I asked a firm massage, and my goodness, I had to stop myself from squealing out, but it did feel nice to have a bit of pampering.

On our last day, we met up at Mawgan Porth beach with some friends of ours who live in Cornwall.  They have a little boy who is 16 months younger than M; the two of them really enjoyed spending some time together on the beach.  We all had a lovely lunch together afterwards.

Holidays mean different things when you have children.  They're not about relaxing, as you still have to entertain, sort out meals, wash up, bathe and clean them, and you don't have all your usual resources at your fingertips.  F did not sleep very well all week, so we were pretty tired.  But we will have some very happy memories of our first holiday as a foursome, and look forward to visiting Cornwall again before too long.



Monday, 16 March 2015

My Two Little Brothers: {Siblings March 2015}

My two little boys continue to get ever closer.  There is definitely more interaction between them now, as F begins to become more and more interested in the world around him.  M never misses the chance to kiss his little brother good morning and good night, and cradles his head against his own in a display of affection that's lovely to see.

I took this series of photos earlier this month, when M asked to have his picture taken with his little brother.  He was in his new monster pyjamas and was sporting a new haircut, while F was looking sweet in a new outfit.  I messed up the focus on some of them but I love how you can really see the love between these two shining through.  And how alike they are becoming!

dear beautiful

Saturday, 14 March 2015

A Five Month Update: My Second Boy

How can you be five months old already?! It hardly seems any time since you arrived, a tiny little bundle with a perfect face, into the world. It scares me how quickly time is speeding away.

These shots were all taken on 12th March 2015, when you turned 5 months.

Weight and Body
You are growing bigger every week and you're now really quite heavy to pick up. I'm not going to be able to carry you around easily with one arm for much longer.  At your last weigh-in about ten days ago you were 13lb 13 oz, and you'd just risen over the 25th centile for weight. We can really tell how much bigger you're growing by the clothes that you're fast growing out of. We bought you some new sleepsuits in January that were HUGE on you but now they're the perfect size. It always amazes me to think you can grow so much only on my milk!

Your strength and coordination is coming on in leaps and bounds. In the last month  you've started to try to pull yourself up to sitting using your tummy muscles when we've left you in a semi reclined position.  You definitely do not like lying down like a new baby for very long, and prefer an upright view of your world.  You are now able to sit unaided for about five seconds before you fall to one side so it won't be long before you reach this important milestone. You're not rolling over though yet, although you can roll to your side. You still hate tummy time!

Another development this month is your new-found discovery of screeching. It's not a pleasant noise, particularly when you practise it at 4am. You've found a feisty side of your character and will show us quite clearly when you're not happy with something (usually when we have to put you in your car seat!).

You've also discovered that we have a cat. Your big blue eyes lock into Ozzie in astonishment and follow him round the room. Ozzie, being the antisocial feline he is, is not at all interested in you.

Gorgeous chubby, dimpled hands!

Now that you have your Jumperoo you love to be on your feet bouncing up and down in it; your legs are really sturdy for your age.  You're also enjoying being thrown about a bit more; Daddy is going to have two little tykes jumping on him before too long!
Feeding and Teething
Your interest in food is increasing. You sit with us at mealtimes in your highchair, making chewing mouth movements, although it makes me feel guilty to see you watching us eat. We've given you the opportunity to have little tastes of mashed potato, broccoli and banana but once the food is in your mouth, you lose interest and spit it back out. We obviously need to wait a bit longer before starting weaning.

We keep checking for signs of your first tooth, as the dribbling continues unabated.  There's nothing there yet but your gums are obviously bothering you quite a lot.
This month, we think you had a massive growth or developmental spurt as your night time sleeping seemed to deteriorate and you wanted to feed much more often.  I've found it hard to keep up with your demands; breastfeeding became a bit sore as your frustration made your latch less than perfect. Then I developed blocked milk ducts which was quite uncomfortable.  We seem to be through those feeding problems now though.

However, we're not out of the woods with regards to your sleeping.  It's really hard to get you off to sleep in the daytime for any substantial nap, unless you're out and about in the car.  At night, you've started waking up every two hours and won't settle back down easily, if at all.  Mummy and Daddy are having to take night shifts again like when you were newborn. It's exhausting!

But look at you - you're so very much worth it. x

Sunday, 8 March 2015

A breath of fresh air

The sun was shining yesterday. Proper blue skies the likes of which we haven't seen for such a long time.  It was too good an opportunity to miss, so we headed for the great outdoors.

Instead of ending up at our usual haunts of local parks we decided to try somewhere different, and headed for Coombe Abbey Country Park.  It was a bit further in the car than we usually go, but a change of scenery was called for.  We packed a picnic and the football and headed out for our adventure.

It was quite windy, and we got a bit buffeted about as we ate our sandwiches and chicken drumsticks, but just to be outdoors with a bit of sunshine smiling down was so good for the soul after what has felt like a long winter of grey skies.

M explored the playground after we'd eaten, and there was a horrible moment when he fell 6ft off a climbing frame, and, because I was looking after F, there was nothing I could do but watch from a distance as the inevitable happened.  Fortunately, there was no damage done, but both M and I were quite shaken up.  I felt like I'd let him down because I wasn't there to catch him.  My wobbly legs eventually returned to normal and an ice cream mollified M's tears (and smeared his whole face!), and we set off to explore the rest of the park.

There were some of the tallest trees I'd seen for a while in the park, and lots of nooks and crannies to play hide and seek behind.  Daddy even climbed a tree when it was his turn to hide - his inner 12 year old boy coming to the surface I think!

Got the focus wrong here: it would've been a lovely photo

We kicked and threw the football, collecting dirt and grass stains galore, and just had such fun together messing around. 

It really did us all good to get out into such a lovely natural playground and spend a couple of hours exploring.  I want to find some more lovely places like this to visit this year, and make the most of our weekends.  Coombe Abbey has been put onto my wish list of places I'd like to stay some day when F is a bit older, and we're able to leave him overnight.

Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall