Friday, 31 August 2012

Food Love.


Awake from a large nap, a large meal needed to be consumed. This picture is deceptive as he stuffed a few mouthfuls in before declaring he was all done, probably due to the strange new pasta sauce.

"He probably didn't like it because I didn't like it, we have the same tastes," Bryan told me later on when I explained what happened with Roman. Well, it's true. They both love spicy food, which I hate, and they both enjoy meals that I can't even look at never mind eat. And of course, matching appetites ;).

Catch Up.


Jan 2012: This year has sped past.

Right now life has taken on a different meaning. It's evolving into something I could have never foreseen. I'll update on that later, but for now? I'm struggling to keep my eyes open, my energy levels up and my 'little' photography project under some kind of control. And control is a strange thing. It's an odd word that means nothing in the scheme of children and parenting. 

I wrote a while ago about not wanting to rain on Roman's parade and I think that's why I've taken a back seat with the daily writing. I need to really take a step back and just see him, rather than analyse the day to day. Taking photos allows me this, but writing lets me delve deeper and perhaps to cobble together stories that are sometimes bred out of my emotions that day. This isn't always a fantastic thing ;).

I can't seem to find the energy, time or motivation required for this project, but I know one thing; I must keep going. I hate quitting what I start, especially when I'm so close to completion. We're 9 months down with taking our photos, but only 8 months updated. During the week I just don't have the time that is needed to play catch-up so my plan is this: get everything done this weekend, on Saturday, when I have a few free hours all to myself. Those hours are delicious, so enjoyed, and I spend all week looking forward to them. 

I'm just so tired these days. So, so very tired. I know what I need, but I can't get it; more help. And if I did have it? Resentment from the other side would be felt; even if it wasn't there, it's always there without people speaking about it. I push myself to my absolute limit all the time because I'd rather ruin my health than feel the quiet resentment of others. My brother is visiting us for a week and I'm really, really going to enjoy that time with him. An extra pair of un-resentful hands is always welcome here when Bryan isn't around (the time I feel over whelmed the most.)

You probably think I'm weak or pathetic, or that I don't love my son. I'm not weak because so much has happened in my life, it's built up barriers, defenses, hard skin and I work my butt off every day to provide for my family. Pathetic? It's objective. I don't think I am. And I love Roman but I am sick, I am disabled and I'm doing a lot more than I should be doing. It's ridiculous but then, that's me, it's what I'm about. I take on too much all the time and I hate to sit still without something to do. I'm one of these annoying people who constantly pushes their limits, often times suffering set backs, and I still keep going. It affords me a semi-normal/average life that a lot of people in my position don't have. I'm fortunate but I'm still blooming knackered.

Edit: As I'm writing this I'm alone, with Roman. We're watching some science programme, which is always fun. My kitchen is a mess and it looks like the next 3 Saturdays will not be mine like I imagined. I have no idea when I'll update with 366 posts, but I'm very much behind on posting - and uploading so it's going to take a lot of my time and that's something I don't have right now. Help.

Thursday, 30 August 2012

Puppy Love.


I know it's not the best photo in the world, but I love it. We were having a moment where Ro was full of extra cuddles for me and I asked Bryan to capture us, just as we were; with me stealing a kiss and Roman directing his love towards his puppy ;).

Wednesday, 29 August 2012



You were watching Come Outside with your favourite Pippin dog in it today. Compared to other children I'd say you don't see as much TV on a weekly basis, this is not because I make a great effort for you not to watch it but because a lot of the time you couldn't care less if it was on or not, so it doesn't go on. And because when it's us, a lot of that time is spent together and it doesn't involve a lot of TV. 

I was checking some important emails (so the TV went on) when I spotted just how spell bound you were by this TV show. I 'awwed' at your little pose, the way you were so captivated, the way your tiny hand rests on your tummy and the intent look on your face? Adorable.


And here is my confession: I use the TV as a babysitter when I need to get something done; checking emails in the morning? The TV goes on. Cleaning needs done that I don't really want 'help' with? The TV goes on. Trying to do last minute packing? The TV goes on. I could lie and say 'I don't like it, I will strive to be a better parent' but quite frankly I don't believe that. If you spend quality time with your children for the majority of their waking hours then a little TV viewing here and there won't turn them into a serial killer.

No 366 Posts?!


I haven't been my usual OCD self when it comes to these 366 photo posts. I know that only a handful of people actually read the posts because I'm doing this for Ro. So really it makes sense that the only people who read these posts are people who know me - either online or offline - and those who come through Google searches and other blogs I've written for. 

I'm grateful to you if you're here reading about 'us', this family, and our extended families, because honestly to me it's exciting, thrilling and amazing but I'm aware not everyone will share that view ;). To the outside world I'm this mum with really long hair, bad clothes and sometimes dodgy make up choices...but inside this home? I feel like I could do anything and be anyone, that I could conquer the world if I so chose ;).

And then comes the nausea after I eat, the bent over double stomach cramps and a whole host of other undesirable stomach complaints that have come home to roost after a clear 2 years without any problems. I'll be glad when my child rearing days are over because these stomach problems I have seem to be related to the fact I have a child rearing body; aka I'm blaming the hormones. I've been tracking it for months and it seems to be the only thing I could possibly blame, so it's getting blamed. It seems a strange twist of fate seeing as though it's a huge possibility that we won't be adding to our family, but that I need to keep having a menstrual cycle that plays havoc with my whole body but that there is no child out of this natural process. Goody goody gum drops ;).

And so this, on top of intense tiredness that can't send me over to sleep at nights, this is the reason why I haven't blogged. I'm weighed down with responsibility by day and weighed down with pain by night (and morning. By goodness does it love to cripple me in the mornings.) My 366 Project is a record keeping project and while I'm dealing with the brunt of my bodily issues I don't want my pain and suffering to shine through onto what is essentially Roman's only record of this year of his childhood.

So if you come here every once and a while and don't see any 366 posts this is why. We're having a break, but I'm still snapping photos. I always remember little fragments of the day for every photo I see because I'm like the Rain Man when it comes to sentimentality; I memorise little details no one else would see. I'm not giving up on this project, I haven't stopped taking photos and I will fill in the blanks when the worst of this crap (pun intended) has passed. This is a post for people that care about my comings and goings, most of the world won't care, but this isn't for most of the world ;).

Tuesday, 28 August 2012

Wipe Nose.


Lately Roman has been displaying baby traits - he wants to be wrapped in a blanket, cuddled an awful lot, is fairly attached to me and sleeps loads. His normal routine is bed at 7pm, then awake anywhere between 8-10am. He takes a two/three hour nap in the afternoon and then he'll wake and eat so much food that I can't quite believe my eyes; hardly a scrap is wasted.

But despite all the other advancements in his development his speech is coming on so rapidly - sentences are getting longer, new words repeated back to me, understanding and able to name colours, random pointing and shouting out of numbers, too ;). "Dry nose," Roman said to me today, grabbing a fist full of toilet paper, balling it up and dabbing his nose with it. I couldn't do anything but laugh. Later on it was this scene pictured above; a quick grab for the blanket round his shoulders and exclaiming "wipe nose! Wipe nose!" over and over. He amuses me that boy ;).

Monday, 27 August 2012



Monday: another day. People wake up early, go about their business and life goes on for one more day. And when I wake up and know that, know that I have today, I feel so blessed in that knowledge. Knowing that my legs will carry me, that my hands might grow tired and my lids will definitely get heavier as the day pulls me along but that I have this day, with this boy and this time won't last forever. One day this toddler will be a boy, who will grow into a man, and all I will have are these memories of this day. 

This day where I was jolted awake by a sense that today had started and that I needed to be awake; up with the birds and the rain that was trying to get inside my window. A few extra hours in time that I never have with Roman as he was ready to start the day, too. A few extra hours that I will one day want to claw back. A few extra hours where I tried not to wish I was back in bed, but tried to just soak up. A few extra hours that were ours, mine, his.  A few extra hours where I tried to keep a smile on my face and frustration out of my tone. A few extra hours to think about life and our future; ours, mine and his.

And because of these extra hours he woke up very happy this afternoon, ready to face the rest of the day, and suddenly became very sleepy. A baby on my lap, sucking on those two favourite fingers and me; kissing that sweet head repeatedly. The only thing that would make this moment sweeter would be if Bryan walked down the street...and before I got to the end of my tangent Roman whispered, "daddy" under his breath. One look out the window confirmed that my wish had been granted. In that moment we were full up on love and completely united.

Sometimes I really like Mondays.

Sunday, 26 August 2012

Some Smell.


I love having a garden and so does Roman. I think wherever we go now, we'll have a garden, unless we're unable to afford a rented place with one, of course ;). Roman loves the weeds that grow in our garden. "Lubbly fwowers (lovely flowers)!" he'll declare, making a grab for a fistful of weeds. "Some smell," he'll say, stuffing his nose right into the 'flower.' 

And yeah this photo has nothing to do with a garden, flowers or weeds but I had to share it; we came in, he was angry and so he threw his water down on the ground in a protest. Shortly after this I threw down that dish towel and he started to mop it up without prompting. We're going through some funny phases right now with this boy and more than ever I feel I'm really getting to know and see his developing personality.

Saturday, 25 August 2012

Once Upon A Potty.


A very nice book arrived today. It's a book all about using the potty, where our bodily functions come from and makes toilet using less scary for little ones - and their parents!

While we were in Thurso Roman asked me several times to put him on the toilet. I obliged his requests but nothing happened. This is odd as he usually does pee when he asks for the toilet or manages to pull down his pants to use his potty. We've gone off course with this potty and toilet thing but as soon as Roman was at home from Thurso he has used the toilet several times quite happily and very freely. My mum was here for a good week or so after we got home and sang to Roman 'pee pee in the toilet!' which he has been chanting ever since whenever there is toilet talk around here.

I've been putting off getting this book until I really went at the toilet using with Roman...but I bought it last week from Amazon and it arrived this morning while I was sleeping. I had been banking on giving it to Roman on Monday, when he starts full time toilet using/independence, but like I said; it arrived while I was sleeping and Bryan gave it to Roman this morning ;). I'm glad as it seems to have sparked off Roman's interest to using the toilet again and I'm hoping that come Monday, despite the odd hiccup, we'll crack this thing together (me, Roman and Bryan when he's around.)

This book is really lovely and is a gentle way to introduce children into the world of full time potty/toilet using. It also comes as a 'girl' or 'boy' version and this is handy as it explains where pee and poo come from. Also...if you're squeamish with cartoon poop or pee; probably not your kind of book. As for Roman? He loves it. He waves his hand up to his nose and shouts; ""PEEOOWW!" at the poo scenes ;). 

Friday, 24 August 2012

My Dearest Boy.


My dearest boy, Roman.

Today you entertained the visiting teachers, ate like I'd never saw before and walked very peacefully to and from the shop. You're just no longer a baby, and haven't been for some time. You're my boy; my ever growing boy. 

You work things out, rather than expect someone else to do your thinking but you will ask for help if you need it. You're balanced out that way that me and dad just aren't. Our legs would be falling off and we'd still be 'fine.' A product of our time, our generation and our upbringing. I hope that changes with you. I hope this balance you have stays because I enjoy learning from it. 

I hope you never have a crushing need to please others all the time or an insecurity about others that makes it hard on you to make and keep good friends. You seem to do okay right now, just as you are, and I hope it stays that way. I'm working on me so I can be better for you and I'm sorry if I don't always get it right or if I slip up from time to time. I am trying so very hard and have never worked so hard on anything more in my life and I'm enjoying the changes; I'm enjoying the relief of letting go and the weight taken off my chest from self forgiveness - I hope you see that one day, in the future, when many years have past and you're no longer my toddler but a fully grown adult who has the world in front of them.

I often wonder about your children and how you'll be as a parent. I can't believe I'm going to be a part of your life, it's going to be so exciting and scary as you grow but I'm looking forward to it. I hope you are, too.

I love you boy. 

Thursday, 23 August 2012



Before I started this year's photo project I knew there'd be certain events I'd be snapping with my camera and as the year has progressed on I knew I'd be taking these photos of Bryan's first day at college.

Because I knew he was nervous I decided that me and Roman - with Ro eating his lunch on the go - would tag along to ease off the nerves a little. 

We walked Bryan to the entrance and I tried to snap plenty of photos but I think Bryan wasn't keen on this at all. So, being sneaky me I let him go into the building and as he was walking up the steps called out for him ;). He also has a sore neck hence the awkward pose here.

"Want colleges!" Roman cried out after Bryan as he left. I don't think he understood that he couldn't go to college with Bryan, my poor boy. He was momentarily upset by the injustice of not being allowed to go to college but soon got over this.

I'm feeling very happy and positive about the things this will mean for our family. I don't really know what the future has in store for us but I do know that this year ahead, this year of changes, will be a great one. I'm excited to see what's in store :).

Wednesday, 22 August 2012

A Fine Mess.


I really don't know what me or Roman will make of this photo in the years to come but for now; this is all I have of today. I don't want to say 'oh my goodness look at my messy hair/beginnings of wrinkles/general shabiness' because, well, does it even matter?

There are few and far between photos of me and Roman together. For both our sakes I told myself that'd change this year. So far it's been difficult to be in front of a camera and centre-stage...and then to see myself as others see me. But then I spotted something; our eye colour, mine and Roman's, is nearly an exact match. He was born with bright blue eyes; Bryan thought it would never change but I was so sure Ro would have green eyes. He's proved us both wrong and surprised me.

And for the sake of future reference; today we had a strange food aversion incident. I made vegan cheesy pasta (macaroni) with broccoli in it. I showed Ro that I was putting it into the mix and he was not bothered by this, or so it seemed. "Trees!" he said when he spotted the broccoli cooking. I served up his dinner and he sat beside me on the sofa to eat it. Well about 5 minutes in he started screaming hysterical and jumped right off the sofa as though he was in pain...feeling very guilty I realised I hadn't let it cool right down, thinking it would be okay to serve as is. 

"Ro! Are you okay?" I proclaimed, checking him over. I quickly realised his problem wasn't the temperature of the food but the contents and in particular; the broccoli. He wasn't expecting it at all and it had freaked him out good style. He was shaking for at least a good hour after his scare but he still ate the broccoli! For the rest of the evening he was freaked out by the neighbour using his vacuum cleaner, any slight sound and was extremely clingy. My goodness I hope I haven't traumatised the poor child!

Tuesday, 21 August 2012

Boobies and Grapes.


After suitably embarrassing me by declaring, 'I've got boobies!' over and over to the missionaries at dinner time Roman decided he quite liked the grapes the Elders had been munching on and decided to climb up and steal some after they'd left. He didn't care he'd been caught, despite the photo portraying otherwise, and kept on eating through them.

"They nice grapes," he said as I pressed down on my shutter button and captured his cheekiness. And the 'boobies' thing? He's been saying it ever since he spotted that men also have 'boobies' on the Biggest Loser, or rather that they have 'moobies.' I know I shouldn't laugh when he says hilariously inappropriate things but it's so difficult...he's just too funny.

Monday, 20 August 2012

Before Bed.


My memory card is dying a horrible death in which it refuses to store photos I snap and stores random, blurry photos that I take (of course it keeps the horrible ones!). I had a horrible gut-wrenching feeling that my camera was the culprit so I stuck the card into my computer and sure enough there are problems with the card on there, too. And my camera works absolutely fine with other cards stashed in it. 

In summary: my camera is ticking over absolutely fine but my card is dying. I'll replace it but I'm generally not feeling very happy today. I have a massive lump at the back of my throat and it's hard to eat/swallow anything. Roman was in good spirits today which always makes being ill better and easier all round. Still, me being me I snapped at him a few times when I shouldn't have. It happens.

So before bed I let him be silly, or rather I allowed myself to let go and relax. Not to sweat the small stuff because it doesn't even matter, not in the long run and not to Roman and so why should it matter to me?

Sunday, 19 August 2012

TV for Toddlers.


My two boys, together. 

We finally caved and started our month free trial for Netflix (an online site for movies and TV shows through a monthly membership fee) and found out that in the 'kids' section the Rugrats is there. Roman of course is in love with it. When we put Netflix up he'll immediately say, "want Tommy! Want Tommy!" - referring to the one and only Tommy Pickles we all knew from Saturday morning TV in the 90s, when me and Bryan were the children ;). Now our child is the child and it's a little strange to be sharing things from my own childhood with him.

We (me and Bryan) went TV free for over 2 years and I won't lie we did watch stuff online but we just didn't want a constant stream of TV in our home, nor did we want the fights over TV that a lot of households seem to have. By only watching it online for those 2 years, we were selecting and selective about what we watched. There's been recent talk to go TV free again and just have Netflix in our lives and I admit to being open to this idea. But to be honest we hardly have our TV turned on unless we're hooking it up to my laptop or watching recorded shows. In my home we had one day completely free of TV from my early childhood and it made such a difference to the family - I felt closer to my family because we weren't fighting about what to watch and we had to do other things, mostly together.

Roman doesn't see a lot of children's TV; he watched one kids programme when my mum was here but this weekend he's seen rather a lot of it. I don't feel 'bad' for that at all, I don't feel guilt and I don't feel like I'm raising a TV dependent boy. If the TV isn't on, he won't ask for it to go on and when it is on he's not phased. But...the Rugrats? He loves that a lot. I don't really 'agree' with a lot of the things going on in that show (Angelica the spoiled brat, babies being bottle fed, stupid parenting techniques being used etc) but then the Simpsons could be viewed in the same light, I suppose. The point is that I feel parents read a lot into TV shows when it's not the TV show that's the problem; it's the parenting style or the crappy explanation you hand to your child when they ask questions. Plus me and Bryan enjoy these shows so we're comfortable sharing them with Roman. To say to him "look, this is what we used to watch when we were children ourselves!" and yes he looks at us like we're crazy but that's because we are crazy ;).

Saturday, 18 August 2012



My sister got a dog and called him Chief (Captain Chief Crunchie is his long name, would you believe) in 2008 and he's been a very happy part of my extended family since then. Roman loves Chief but I don't know if Chief loves Roman in the same way ;). Unrequited doggy love, what can you do?

And Roman calls all dogs 'Shadow' after my parents dog but cats, they are just cats ;). After a little time together Roman would shout after Chief saying, "SHADOW! CHIEFY!" and it's very safe to say this boy loves his animals.

Friday, 17 August 2012

Growing Boy.


I want to make note of Roman's growing changes; the emotional as well as the physical.

Physical Changes

  • He sleeps until 10am and goes to sleep at 7pm (technically he's in there. Sometimes he'll sing to himself before falling asleep.)
  • Although he's not grown - because we measure him - he does look taller. We suspect he's taken a stretch and this is confirmed by clothes that are outgrown.
  • He finishes almost every meal and every bit of food put in front of him. 
  • Has all of his teeth.
  • Loves, loves, LOVES the freedom of the swimming pool. When the Olympic swimming was on, he was glued to the screen watching it. Whenever a pool flashes up somewhere he'll talk about swimming non stop. 
Emotional/Intellectual Changes

  • Recognising numbers. Today I made a pair of ad hoc binoculars for him with two toilet rolls taped together and while I cleaned the bathroom and he chatted to me, he piped up with, "this is a number 8." I was bowled over. Completely bowled over. 
  • Copying every single little thing. Today I used a mild swear word - mild to me, nothing to others - and Roman copied it straight away. There was a day when my mum was here where Roman was copying every single thing we said. "Be careful, Roman's having a copy cat day," I told Bryan and of course Ro parroted back to me; "copy cat! Copy cat!"
  • We have conversations and I love it. This time last year it was a whole lot of babbling with a few coherent words thrown in here and there and now, at this time, we're having lengthily conversations about dinosaurs, babies, being sad or happy, things that hurt, food we like, baths and swimming. Yes those conversations are sometimes on a loop and often times repeated but man I love our conversations. I love to listen, really listen without interrupting, and I love that Roman pays me the same courtesy. I love that he absorbs what I tell him and spits it out to me later on, out of the blue.
  • I'm loathe to report about this one, but I feel I must for the sake of documenting it. He's actually having less emotional melt downs and I feel he's able to communicate his needs and wants better. It's because I'm making the effort to stop and ask, to pause and say things like, "Roman, I know you want to play with your toys over going to bed, but it's time for sleep right now, okay? I understand that might upset you but you need sleep." 
  • Related to above: I'm giving him more independence so that he becomes less frustrated and thus less likely to become annoyed at tasks he can't do but is trying so hard to complete. I'm catching myself out when I say 'GOOD BOY!' in a really high pitched voice and replacing it with; "Your job is to put away toys and you're doing that very well." Or, "Wow you really struggled to get that zip up, but look you did eventually got there." Okay...I admit sometimes I can't help myself and shower him in 'You're such a GOOD BOY!' like he's my pet dog ;). You win some, you lose some!
  • Putting time in. I heard about time in when Roman was a newborn and brushed it off as total nonsense...but now I have a toddler? Now I can see the benefits of 'time in' and unlike time out it can be used at every and any age. This is basically as it sounds; spending one on one time that is completely child led and exclusive to the child. If they want to paint, you paint and do nothing else. If they want to be outside that's what you do. Housework? It can wait. It will always be there. Work work? Clients can wait. Children do not. Church callings? Do them on Sunday after church. Put the time in with your child and it will benefit you both forever.
There are probably a million and one more things I'm missing. There is just so much going on with Roman's development; his speech is the clearest it's been, he's learning a few new words every single day and I'm becoming more and more aware that I need to sort out lesson plans for him. Mostly we're enjoying time together as three before Bryan goes back to college next week, then summer will be truly over. For now I'm enjoying my family, my boy and my husband and I like to think they're enjoying my company and time.

Thursday, 16 August 2012

Sweet and Simple.


Roman being tickled by me, his mum. Oh the sweet and simple things in life they put a smile on my face.

Wednesday, 15 August 2012



I've taken a fair few hair cut photos of Roman this year but none like this. This is Roman completely at ease with the clippers. It only took us 8 months ;).

Monday, 13 August 2012

Sleepy Head.


It's been a sleepy past few days. Naps and longer bed time sleeps - thank goodness. I love you Roman but sometimes you're so very tired and fed up with it that it drives me to feeling like I can't do anything for you but put you down for a sleep.

Sleep for you is magical at times. I get an over tired cranky boy who goes to sleep, waking up quite happy and very talkative. Or sometimes a little artist who will want to paint or draw for ages. And sleep, well you can't seem to do it without your little friend Deacon (pictured in your Vulcan grip above) who you've had since babyhood.

You (3 weeks and a bit old) and a plumper, fresher looking Deacon. 


P.S Bryan will be taking over the photos for the next few days because I am burnt out and sick. Normal blogging and picture taking service will resume shortly :). 

Sunday, 12 August 2012

Measuring Up.


We like to keep on top of measuring Roman, just to see if he grows over night like we suspect. 

Today Bryan made several comments about Roman looking taller and so out came the measuring tape to check things over. Nope. He hasn't grown. Same 2ft '11 boy we know and love ;). Seeing as Bryan is over 6ft tall I often wonder how Roman will grow; if he'll be a gentle giant like B or, well, a short ass like my family tend to be ;).

Saturday, 11 August 2012

He's Juggin' It.


I can't tell you how long we've searched high and low for a little jug for Roman and turned up nothing. So when my mum scouted out this little jug on Thursday it was a happy day. Finally, I thought to myself, Roman can have the independence he craves and demonstrates on a daily basis.

Today he got his chance to use it and the verdict is that he seems to quite enjoy his little jug. I'm happy, he's happy and Bryan is happy that Roman has this independence to pour his own milk and water into his cup, therefore less frustration and some novelty at meal times for Roman :). 

Friday, 10 August 2012

Forming Attachments


Roman with Granny Kirk this afternoon.

My mum had been with us for over a week and today she left to go to my grans (Roman's great gran) to go on holiday tomorrow with my two aunts. My heart felt torn because I know that tomorrow Roman will be asking for my mum, his granny, and I'll have to tell him (for the 50th time) that she's not here. And he'll still keep on asking for her, even though I've told him she's gone on holiday.

They've really formed an attachment to one another over these past few weeks we've been together. More often than not my mum would get up with Roman in the morning, feed him breakfast and keep him entertained until either Bryan or I woke up - yes, she's great. I have a fantastic family who do so much for me and it's always been this way, my mum especially who gave over her 20's, 30's, 40's to parent me and now she's newly into her 50's she still parents me, looks after me and best of all she is a fantastic grandparent to Roman. 

So today we walked to the station and as we drew nearer Roman begged to go on the train, very excited at the prospect. We all took it in turns to explain to him what was happening, but he is 2.5 years old and explanations aren't heeded. As soon as my mum boarded the train Roman wanted to be with her. "WANT TRAIN! WANT GRANNY!" he screamed, wailed and the tears (heartbreaking, streaming) appeared. "He's upset because he isn't going on the train," Bryan told me, but my heart and head knew differently. Yes he was upset about not going on the train but his little heart was hurting from being parted from his granny, too. 

Not one to ignore or try to distract these upsets but rather face them and comfort them I decided we should stop and comfort Roman. I took him out the buggy, sat him on my knee and as best as I could I tried to explain the weight of the situation to him. "It's okay to be upset," I said, very sure of my words and in that moment I felt so secure in what I was saying. I've never been sure of public crying, it's not something I practice myself and I find it so very hard to cry around people yet I'm becoming more and more okay with Roman expressing his happiness, sadness and all other host of emotions both privately and publicly in a way that is very healthy indeed. I will never tell my child to stop crying, I will never tell my child that he is embarrassing himself if he's upset, I will never tell my child that public displays of upset are 'wrong.' I've always found it strange that we can laugh, cheer and celebrate very publicly yet it is apparently wrong to cry in public, or show any signs of cracking or upset. Nonsense.

This chapter of 'allowing' emotions - rather than suppressing my child's emotions - is opening me up in ways I never imagined it would, after all my attitude change is for Roman, right? Well not really. I find myself not making any apologies I don't mean, I'm working on asking for and accepting help from others and not taking on too much at once, which is my life story. This acceptance of Roman's changing emotions is making changes in me - and I hope in Bryan, too, as he learns how to be even more gentle with our son's developing self esteem. 

The result of all this was a short lived outburst of tears, wailing and pleading followed by a quick acceptance of what was to come; our family going back down to three, with no granny peeking through his bedroom door in the morning. "We're going to say bye to the train and bye to granny," I explained, not entirely convinced Roman would understand but trying so hard to be delicate with his feelings. He surprised me when he replied with, "bye train, bye granny, want buggy, want ASDA (the shops)." As the train, with my mum in it, rolled out of the station we waved it off and after that Roman would ask a little for his granny. When we got home it was bedtime and as I put him down to sleep he shouted out, "night night granny!" and my heart? Oh it shattered, but it also burst with love. Love of the family ties, of the attachment that is fully formed between granny and grandchild and the love Roman displays for his family, to know he's secure, loved, cherished and cared for.

Thursday, 9 August 2012

Eating Out with a Toddler.


Today my mum took me and Roman for lunch to a local cafe that offers vegan options - you can't really say no to that, can you? We'd been a few weeks previous with my aunt and had been shocked at the great options they had; plus the fact that they were so understanding and 'got' the vegan thing. A plate of olives, hummus, bread and salad arrived and Roman had settled himself very nicely in front of it; ready to eat when it had been intended for me and him to share two dishes between us...well I could think again if that was happening ;). My dish was generous and lets just say that several hours after consuming it I was still fit to burst so I wasn't too unhappy about Roman having a big person's serving all to himself.

He happily chomped through the bread and helped himself to some 'trees' (salad) before he started on the olives. Well he stuck one in his mouth, started to chew and suddenly he began spitting it back out saying, "ew! BOGGING!" as he did so. I would have been embarrassed if the cafe had been busier but as it wasn't I found myself laughing at his reaction. 

If you don't know already 'bogging' is a Scottish word for something horrible. We've also got; hoaching, tinking and 'yeuch' (it's 'yuck' but it's all in the way you say it, usually with your best Scottish accent.) 

So despite the olive incident, all went well. Roman is easy to please plus he'll do what I tell him to for the most part when we're out. If he wants to jump up and down - plus run from corner to corner - around the place then he'll quickly retreat when I tell him that's not how he should be behaving when we're in public. It helps that the place we chose was child friendly and had plenty of toys to hand to keep him entertained between being unleashed from the buggy and our food arriving, toys help. I'd also packed a few light snacks for before eating our lunch so he wasn't in a food grump. It all helps. However I don't think Roman will ever get a taste for olives, he's tried them several times before and each time he'll spit them back out again and that's fine it means more for me ;).

Wednesday, 8 August 2012

New Shades.


I've spent a good amount of time looking for decent kids shades and today, while not looking for them at all, we came across these Peppa Pig shades for Roman. He kept asking for 'help' when putting them on and it seemed he had to get used to the idea of the shades resting on his nose but after it a while he got very comfortable with his shades. I'm sure they'll appear more than once in this little project ;).

Tuesday, 7 August 2012



Roman really enjoys getting involved in household tasks. Whatever we're doing, he wants to be a part of and putting away our shopping is no exception to that. So when it arrived today, in the van he loves so much, he was full of excitement. I have to say I was pretty excited, too, as it came as a surprise from my Aunty Jeannette. We like to be self reliant and self sufficient but the reality is that we do need our family and we've been more than blessed when it comes to family helping us, supporting, caring, understanding this situation and loving us. Times have been tough around here, but that's how it is when you're in your early twenties, married and are parents or so I am learning.

When the shopping bags were unloaded into the hall he started on the rice milk; trying to pierce the foil to have a drink, then once I'd confiscated his precious nectar he dug deep into the bags and ran through to the kitchen with it. "THERE YOU GO!" he announced on his arrival into the kitchen, handing over these laundry tablets to Bryan.

Monday, 6 August 2012

Stuck On You.


Lately I've found myself not 'looking' for chances to get photographs - there are so many missed moments for photographs; the seemingly 'perfect' picture taking opportunities crop up but would come off as a set up. Plus every mother might know by now that our children have inbuilt sensors to pick up on when we don't have a camera around and they take this chance to do back-flips/somersaults through rings of fire in the interim of grabbing our cameras ;).

Today, however, I felt quite proud of myself for documenting this blurry moment where Roman covered Bryan's hand in stickers. He doesn't stick to tasks for very long, maybe 3-5 minutes per task on a good day, so I was surprised when he was happy putting stickers on every surface (human and couch) he could manage. Roman's apparent neglect of my need to keep surfaces sticker-free and you know, clean, just showed me that I can either be a good mother or a perfect housekeeper and as babies don't keep I chose good motherhood as my path. I'll see the clean house in 20 or so years time I'm sure! 

Sunday, 5 August 2012

Spiced Cupcake.


I can't help myself when it comes to children enjoying their food - it is such a satisfying sight. As adults we can be so self conscious and so self aware of eating in front of others but it seems that children just go full throttle with the eating and I love it :).

This afternoon Roman, his granny and me made spiced cupcakes and not too soon after they were cooked, cooled and iced they were being consumed quickly by Roman. He decided they didn't have enough of a kick so added his 'juica' (juice) to them ;).

Saturday, 4 August 2012



Two tired faces; one receiving a kiss (lick?) and one giving a kiss (lick?).

Friday, 3 August 2012

Pull Up.


Bryan enjoys showing Roman the ropes of the pull up bar.

Thursday, 2 August 2012



Today: you woke up with a spotty rash which you told me was itchy. "Scratch it," you said, clawing your skin. I'm not entirely sure what goes on with your tender skin at times but sometimes it flares up; a little red patch appears on your left cheek but today the flare up was all over your sides and back. I'm not sure what went through your head before bath time but you were very keen to get into the bath - perhaps to soothe the skin?

Wednesday, 1 August 2012

Music Man.


I got this guitar when I turned 12 (or the day after I turned 12, seeing as I'm a Christmas Eve baby and this was my Christmas present that year) under the impression that I'd learn to play it and totally master guitar playing. Well that impression was somewhat of an illusion because I didn't self-teach the way I thought I would and I've never been a great guitarist or musician. Roman, he's different; he observes in a way that musicians do, he has this passion and curiosity to music that I've never had. I enjoy music, but I do not enjoy being a part of the music. I'm too clumsy and heavy handed. Hence why I gave my musical brother this guitar.

When I was 13 or 14 I auditioned at school for drum lessons, simply because no other girl would. I didn't really want to learn to play the drums nor did I believe for one second that I would understand a single instruction or enjoy the drums...I just wanted to show the teachers that girls could play drums, too. Well that didn't go very well for me. The teacher grabbed some drum sticks, placed them into my hands and told me to tap along to the rhythm they played out on their guitar. At first I froze and on my second attempt I messed up big style. The teacher didn't rush or panic me, he waited and waited where most adults gave up on me but when the audition was over he told me I wouldn't be getting lessons because I wasn't 'good enough' to be taught. Ever since that incident, and giving up on my guitar (I wasn't disciplined enough to self-learn and didn't have enough money to take classes), I've given up on ever being musical. 

My family is arty, creative, technical and musical - all of the things I am not and will never be, so it is a little odd to see that I haven't inherited these over powering genes but that Roman displays genuine abilities with music. He watches people playing the piano and imitates their movements, his fingers reaching for keys to lightly play out specially formulated Roman tunes instead of the usual toddler fist pump. On the first day we were in Thurso Roman spotted this guitar and made a beeline for it, not afraid to lift it up and start strumming straight away. Where I'd take a step back, he takes giant leaps forward. Where I'm not musical, my son is. My little guitar boy, my little music man.