Monday, 31 December 2012


Marisca really loved her cracker's free gift. I've never seen a non-golfer be so excited about golf tees. She thought they were pencils.

Sunday, 30 December 2012

Sleeping like a baby

I may have said this before, but since having Marisca I've always felt confused by the term 'sleeping like a baby', unless it's used to refer to sleeping at in opportune moments and being awake for the remainder. But Thomas does do a good blissful sleep when he gets going. Better yet, we're in a brief phase (we hope it's not brief but it seems prudent to assume it is) where he's sleeping very well at night: the last 4 nights have had only one waking at around 3 until 5.30 or later. I'm finding it a bit confusing, I think my body is prepared for my sleep to be more broken that than, and I feel a bit tired through oversleep by the morning!

A little family Christmas

It's been quite busy since, but our Christmas itself was a lovely quiet affair. Just the 4 of us, with a trip to church, a nice pheasant for lunch, and presents in the afternoon. We also watched Room on the Broom together, which was lots of fun.

I didn't seem to take many photos this year, too busy with having a nice time with my family. But here are a few: the variety of outfits shows that these were taken over a few days!

Wednesday, 26 December 2012

A bit of a worry

Well, we've had our first admission to hospital as parents. But it wasn't A&E for our runabout falloveralot toddler: it was for our little boy.

Thomas was out of sorts on Friday and had a raised temperature when we tested him in the evening. We made use of the family doctor-grandma, and then the local out of hours service, and then the emergency GP at the hospital. We were admitted to the children's ward just before midnight. Nobody could really say what the problem was, just that babies his age shouldn't be having high temperatures at all.

A worrying and stressful night followed. We started with trying to get blood out of the tiny veins in his wrists, it was horrible watching how slowly it dripped out into the tiny bottle they were trying to fill. He was then given what seemed like a huge amount of saline into the drip, and we were sent off for chest x-rays, where I needed to wear an iron apron and hold him down. The worst was the lumbar puncture, which only worked on the third attempt with an awful lot of squealing in between. By then they decided to give him intravenous antibiotics in case in turned out to be bacterial meningitis, some baby paracetamol, and then checked him in for the night.

Elspeth stayed in with him while I came home by 3 in the morning, to be here for Marisca (and relieve the emergency babysitter from next door).

The test results started coming through during the weekend, and he kept being dosed. We had to do a lot of juggling and call in some favours to keep looking after Marisca. By Sunday he was more or less his normal self and his temperature was down to normal. Eventually they let us go at the end of Monday afternoon.

It was a really really difficult night on Friday - so many tests that upset our boy and didn't yield any knowledge to tell us what the matter was. He started to look more comfortable on Saturday but we didn't know that he'd be home for Christmas until lunchtime on Christmas Eve. Not the kind of preparation we had in mind. He's home now and definitely back to normal, and I'm overjoyed to have both him and Elspeth back at home.

Wednesday, 19 December 2012


It's definitely approaching Christmas in our house.  Last year Marisca was interested but it all went on around her.  This year she is part of the driving force!  

We put our tree and decorations up at the weekend.  As you can see, Marisca helped with hanging decorations on the tree and enjoys all of the lights we have.  She has a tree of her own in the front room, with  some homemade decorations, which she will periodically go and visit and move the decorations on.  She will line up the crib scene again and again (although sometimes she thinks the ox is a reindeer).  She has been Mary in toddler group nativity.  

It's really, really nice sharing her excitement.

Tuesday, 18 December 2012

Four weeks

Thomas is four weeks old today: in some ways the time has flown by, while at the same time it feels like he has been part of the family forever. He has fitted into our family perfectly, and it feels so right to have him here and be a family of four.

People keep asking me if Thomas is an 'easy' baby. In some ways that's true, as he feeds well, sleeps well and is generally quiet with not much crying. But I think the real difference is in me and Tim - we are much more relaxed about caring for him, and I think that makes him a relaxed baby.

In the last few days he has started spending more time each day awake and looking around. There's always lots going on with an older sister rampaging around, and he copes very well with the hugs, kisses and cuddles he regularly gets from her, as well as the shrieking in his ears and helpful provision of toys in his face. He loves cuddles in the sling, rocking in his chair and being bounced on the yoga ball. He will tolerate baths but doesn't think much of them, and he hates getting his feet cold, which makes nappy changing fun!

My cousin visits

My cousin baby Alice came to visit last week. I think she is still baby Alice although is no as much of a baby as baby Thomas. It was fun to play with her but mostly it was fun to tell her how many of the things she was playing with we're mine. Here we are both finding the smallest person in the room.

Monday, 17 December 2012

Reindeer Stampede

I ran in a 5km race last weekend!  It's something of a surprise really, as I would never have thought myself a runner.  I always liked sport but running seemed particularly pointless.  And when I started running earlier in the year, a race of 5km (that's about half an hour at my speed) with & against other people would have seemed impossible, as I found running for 2 minutes in a row impossible.

But there you go, application of self in the cause of improving fitness and enjoyment, led to this.  And the race itself was rather fun, I even look like I'm enjoying myself in the picture below, although I did select a photograph of me after I spotted the camera...  Probably more a fun run than a race (see antlers below).  

I found myself not last, finishing in 27:26, including carrying Marisca for the last 10 yards!  It was nice to have family support, and they got their reward for it with a chance to sit in the cafe with hot chocolate, and then a free mince pie for Marisca.  

I also enjoyed my post-race mince pie.

Friday, 7 December 2012

Like sister like brother

Aw, what a lovely pair of children!  Marisca still wears sleepsuits (or 'sleep sloots') sometimes, and here they are together in their white sleepsuits.  Aw, again.

Thursday, 6 December 2012

The Spencers come to play

We've had a lovely weekend with Thomas's most numerous (and largest) cousins. Rachel, David, Sam, Izzy and Elliot came up for two days of fun and merrymaking. We had a nice morning and lunch in Bradford, they all looked after Marisca including a trip to the media museum while Elspeth and I (and Tom) went to see The Mousetrap, and we wrapped it up with parks and playing on the Sunday.

Everyone who wanted cuddles got some, and plenty of photos were taken. That plenty were taken does not imply that I took one which didn't have at least one person squinting or looking like a loon, you understand. That's just the nature of family photographs.

In particular, Izzy and Elliot both enjoyed playing with Marisca, and we had a wonderful 5 minutes of taking photographs of Risky and El posing with Thomas. With, every time, both of them running round to look at the screen of the camera. Poseurs both.

Tuesday, 4 December 2012

Second child syndrome (part 1 of many, I suspect)

I was sent this lovely poem by Ogden Nash (the poem is by Ogden Nash, rather than me being sent it by Ogden Nash).  First child/second child comparisons abound in this house and in conversation with friends, so I thought I'd share.

First Child ... Second Child 


Be it a girl, or one of the boys,
It is scarlet all over its avoirdupois,
It is red, it is boiled; could the obstetrician
Have possibly been a lobstertrician?
His degrees and credentials were hunky-dory,
But how's for an infantile inventory?
Here's the prodigy, here's the miracle!
Whether its head is oval or spherical,
You rejoice to find it has only one,
Having dreaded a two-headed daughter or son;
Here's the phenomenon all complete,
It's got two hands, it's got two feet,
Only natural, but pleasing, because
For months you have dreamed of flippers or claws.
Furthermore, it is fully equipped:
Fingers and toes with nails are tipped;
It's even got eyes, and a mouth clear cut;
When the mouth comes open the eyes go shut,
When the eyes go shut, the breath is loosed
And the presence of lungs can be deduced.
Let the rockets flash and the cannon thunder,
This child is a marvel, a matchless wonder.
A staggering child, a child astounding,
Dazzling, diaperless, dumbfounding,
Stupendous, miraculous, unsurpassed,
A child to stagger and flabbergast,
Bright as a button, sharp as a thorn,
And the only perfect one ever born.


Arrived this evening at half-past nine.
Everybody is doing fine.
Is it a boy, or quite the reverse?
You can call in the morning and ask the nurse. 

Monday, 3 December 2012

A new grandson

Thomas has had a number of visitors over his first two weeks, primarily all four grandparents.  Thomas is the first boy on the Crocker side since his Grandad, a 'few' decades ago, and the first male Mosedale for nearly 30 years (although that's a bit cheeky as my sister has boys that are half-Mosedales).  

So a lovely event for both families, and here are the doting grandparents all staring into Tom's (usually closed) eyes.

Sunday, 2 December 2012

A nice new blanket

How lucky Thomas is to have such creative people in his family as his grandma and aunt who knitted the blanket he's relaxing on. And that's not to mention his gran and other aunt who are dab hands themselves, just without evidence of it to hand.
Thank you!