Monday, 29 July 2013

A Cry for Help

(This post was originally written last Tuesday, but has been delayed due to excessive busy, as well as lack of sleep and general bad temperedness, read on for the details)

Wit’s End - Where jokes go to die.

It’s a story that will be familiar to many of you, but here is my own version of the old classic, “Help, I’m the parent of a two year old who refuses to sleep and won’t do anything she’s told.”

As with all good stories this one starts with a change in the weather.  The hot weather has really messed us up unfortunately, none more so than the little tyrant.  Although it has been a particularly hard time for my wife who is (I hope I get this right) 28 weeks pregnant, but whose bump, according to the funky little bump chart measurement thingTM (I am available for all your technical term needs) is actually measuring about 3 weeks bigger than it should be.  This,  coupled with the heat (did I mention it was warm?), has made things extra difficult for B looking after the monster.  

Another side effect of the hot weather, which has been really quite warm, is that N has not been going to sleep.  I choose to assume it is the hot weather as then I can lull myself into the, probably foolish, hope that once it cools down a bit this will improve.  I have devoted words on this blog already to the subject of my daughter’s exceptional sleep regime so I won’t rehash that, except to say that things are in no way as bad as they were for the first 10 months of her life, which we affectionately refer to round here as the lost months, and I am very grateful that I have bumped my sleep average up to about 6 hours a night now, positively blissful.  However, gratitude aside, it is getting just a little wearing that whilst N will sleep all the way through now, which sounds great, we need to drill down into those numbers just a little.  Let me especially highlight the Time of First Sleep (TOFS) number which is currently fluctuating between 9 and 10:30pm.  Which when you compare that with the Time of First Awakening (TOFA) number of 5-6am leaves you with an equation which spits out the nightmarish number for Length of Sleep for Two Year Old (LOSFTYO) of around 8 hours.  This may be enough for you and me, it is not enough to prevent my two year old daughter from turning into a whining, exhausted, misbehaving wreck of a little girl.

We have tried a number of things to solve the problem.  From cutting out the afternoon sleep which she has still been having - doesn’t work as she won’t go to sleep much earlier and she becomes impossible to deal with by about 4 o’clock if we try that - to trying to get her to sleep in longer in the mornings - also hasn’t work as she has a built in Daddy’s Going Downstairs, Must Go Down With Him (DGDMGDWH, I think she needs to work on her acronyms) alarm which goes off whenever she hears me creeping downstairs.  Unfortunately she is just at the moment in a cycle where she is not getting enough sleep, is hot and bothered, and is driving us both crazy.

Anyway, this is all a fairly long winded preamble to letting you know that for a while this blog may have to come with a Danger, Lack of Jokes (DLOJ) warning sign while we all wait for things to cool off.  Oh and hopefully this hot weather will stop as well.

Tuesday, 9 July 2013

Down the Garden Path

It’s got hot.  Very hot.  So hot that the internal combustion engine that keeps me warm in the coldest temperatures in winter is currently squinting at the thermometer and relishing the fact that it has finally found some serious competition.  It has bought itself some training shoes and recruited a personal trainer and is really getting into shape, I think it’s building itself up for the heating Olympics.  This will likely sound familiar to many of you who also feeling the heat a bit, but I say it to try to explain why I am currently struggling to put one word after another in a way that is anything other than arrant gibberish (it may also go someway to explaining why I find the word arrant quite so bewitching.  It clearly means nothing at all, but has the potential to go with pretty much everything to brighten things up, much like salad cream really.

Wednesday, 3 July 2013

Swinging Doors

We’ve reached that stage with N.  You know the one.  The one where what you thought were innocent doors are actually revealed to be secret playground equipment (which sounds like a great name for an indie band made up entirely of 7 year olds).  You don’t remember that?  Let me refresh your memory/tell you about what my life is like at the moment.


Squeak Squeak

“N, stop playing with the gate!”

Squeak Squeak

“I said stop it”

*Looks round to find N swinging wildly on the stair gate with her foot stuck trying to extract it from between the bars.*

This has happened on numerous occasions in the last few days, and it is often followed by plaintive and slightly sheepish cries for help as one of us has to go and pull her out.  

It’s not just the stair gates though (although those pieces of apparatus are probably the most worrying considering they are the only hinged items in our house that I put up, and whilst my DIY skills are cosmically great, it turns out stair gates are tricky things to get right. At least she doesn’t swing on the gate which is across the arch into the kitchen, mostly because my wife had to take it down because I put it up so badly that N could basically walk underneath it).  Anything with a hinge, it turns out, is fair game for a bit of fun.  The doors are swung on wildly, seemingly in an attempt to cause a draft ferocious enough to cool down the vicious heat of the British summer.  Even the door on the little play oven that sits in the lounge has been receiving the treatment.  Not so much with the swinging, but it has been clattered into the wall on a number of occasions.

What I need to know then is this: Which will come first, N growing out of this phase, or me having to purchase and hang new doors? With my level of skill I may need some practice.

Answers on a postcard please to

The House With No Doors
Squeaky Lane

Or you could just pop it in the comments, whichever you think is easier.