18 A new year, new start – January 2017

31 January 

Wrapping up a long month 

January always seems to crawl by. This year was particularly full because of Patrick’s two weekend birthday.

This weekend we had absolutely nothing on which was good as I ended up coming down with a nasty case of tonsillitis. 

Saturday we made vegan pancakes which were delicious! 

That afternoon we went to Beans and Barley to meet up with Tom, Adele and Jack. There is a new ‘soft play’ area and the twins had an amazing time in the ball pit. Isaac kept  going up to random women and girls and just standing quietly in front of them and smiling… such a charmer! Margot had more important things to do…

On Saturday night Andy came round for dinner and it was a fairly quiet and typical night. But then I woke up at about 3 with a horrible throats and the tickle cough that I’d had for a couple of days came back with a vengeance and I needed up throwing up for ages. Not fun. 

By the time I got back to sleep it was clear that I was ill.

I went to the Chemist and they said that they had a doctor coming in later… so we went back to Beans and Barley for lunch and Margot had a nap. We have been experimenting with vegan mac and cheese. This was a major hit!

In the afternoon Patrick took the twins to Chloe and Ciaran and Aidan’s. They had homemade crispy duck pancakes and Margot came home saying ‘Aidan’.

Meanwhile I went to the chemist, saw the doctor, paid an unexpected £50 and then got some antibiotics. 

Nevertheless Monday I was too sick to work so spent the day on the sofa and in bed. Patrick ended up working late and I had some banana trauma …

Tuesday (this morning) I broke out in a rash… had to go back to my real GP and get new antibiotics. They cleared everything up and I had a miraculous recovery. 

27 January 

Fun times before bed

Last night the babies slept till 6:15! Which might be one of their best nights ever.

We had a worrying start with Isaac wanting to stay at nursery and resisting being taken home. There was quite a bit of screaming but then… I got out the bag of balls!

They LOVE the balls. 

Margot ran around collecting the blue ones.

Isaac had some fun with his stacking toy.

Then he got very excited when I turned the camera to selfie mode. He looked at himself and said ‘Isaac!’ It feels like his language is really coming along.

Then we started throwing the balls around… Isaac kept throwing them over his shoulder and giggling. 

They went to bed super easily and Patrick went out with the NCT guys and I had a quiet night in. 

25 January


They slept through to about 6:10 this morning. We were all in a fantastic mood. Sleep is the best best best thing.

23 January

40th birthday weekend take two

Well that, as they say, was an adventure. The plan was so simple. 25 adults, 12 children, 2 dogs. What could go wrong? 

Friday started straightforwardly enough. I dropped the twins off at nursery and went home to do packing and work. Claire came over about one and we had some lunch and packed up the car. 

The trouble started… I got in the car and all the lights went on the dash – service now, flat tire… We picked up the twins and packed them into the car and went to the gas station to get gas and to top up the tire. The air pump was broken… so luckily I drove it back to a tire place around the corner from our house. We left the car and took the kids back to the house. When we got back about half an hour later it turned out that there was a 4 inch bolt through the tire and he had to replace the whole tire. 

We finally got to Claire’s, gave the babies some dinner and then put them to bed in the car. About 15 minutes out the engine light came on and we lost our turbo engine… so we limped all the three hour drive to Dorset. It was pretty stressful. We got down to about 15 miles an hour on some hills, the car was SO heavily loaded and our engine just wasn’t working.

By some miracle we got to the house. We were the last to arrive and put the kids down straight away. We then had some pizza and drinks. We went to bed reasonably early, and a good thing too. Isaac woke up stupidly early. 

We had a nice morning hanging out with the family. Then stayed home to put the twins down for their nap and to have a lie down ourselves. 

We finally made it into the lovely Lyme Regis. It was bitterly cold! 

We had decided to have Saturday be a little fancy, so I brought my strapless dress, but not my strapless bra! So in Lyme my mission was to find either a new bra or a new outfit. 

I went into a thrift store and found a new dress and necklace for the princely sum of £7.

Not too bad!

The twins had a great time with the older kids and we had a dance party for them before bed.

They LOVED the dancing. She very much dances with her arms and he dances with his feet. 

They went to bed reasonably well and Patrick and I had a good evening with the family.

The next morning Isaac got me up about 5… when I got downstairs the front door was wide open and the dogs were missing. We turned up Shankley snoozing on a sofa, but Percy was no where to be found. I had a total panic for a couple of hours until we worked out that Claire had taken him to bed with her.

That day was then basically taken up by tidying and the drive back to London. The engine light stayed off till we got to London. We’ll take it to the garage this weekend… 

Sadly the twins just aren’t sleeping well at the minute. I’m hoping that like everything else it’s just a phase. 

16 January 

Birthday weekend take one

Yesterday was Patrick’s 40th birthday. We’ve got a huge family party next weekend so this weekend was largely low key. 

We went into town on Saturday to get Patrick his birthday guitar. It’s a Godin 5th Avenue and very beautiful. 

We don’t often take the twins into central London but they had a great day. We walked from Denmark Street to the John Lewis at Oxford Circus. Then had a pub lunch. 

Isaac was so funny in the pub. He kept lining up his food in front of him and then selecting what to eat. Like a smorgasbord. 

When we got home we decided to have a quiet night in and Andy (who was going to babysit) came over for dinner.

Sunday (the actual birthday) was a little slow to get going. We bathed the twins and Isaac had a total meltdown because I wouldn’t let him wear his cardigan in the bath. We ended up in the Salisbury with Chloe and Ciaran and Aidan for a Sunday roast. 

They came back to our place to visit the guitar and Virginia, Alistair, Hettie and baby Joshua came over too. 

We had a lovely afternoon. Shortly after they left it became very clear that I had a horrible case of food poisoning. It’s testament to the fact that this is only week 3 in my new job that I’m going in…

13 January 

This week was long! Isaac still isn’t sleeping as much as we’d like. On Monday we had a tube strike and it took me 4 hours to get to work (yes walking would have been faster) and 2.5 hours to her home. It was pretty touch and go as to whether we’d make it to get the babies.

Isaac continues to want a transitional object. At the moment this means wearing a coat or cardigan all the time, or indeed his PJs over his clothes.

Margot has been sweet and funny this week. She’s got these weird spots on her face, and what I think may be exzema. If it doesn’t go away soon I’ll take her to the GP. 

Today she said cake. 

8 January

Another first 

We had a properly Freudian experience yesterday… I was getting them dressed and Isaac decided he wanted some naked time. So he took off his nappy and grabbed his willy. Great fun. Margot decided she also wanted naked time. So I undressed her and when I got her nappy off she went to grab her willy and was DEVASTATED to discover that she didn’t have one. She started crying and then tried to grab Isaac’s – he very wisely ran away. So she chased him around the room… eventually she stopped trying to grab his willy and stopped crying. It was both funny and sad. I think it’s the first time she’s realised they’re different. 

We’ve all had quite a tiring week. First weeks back usually are. Our dummy relapse seeems to have sorted itself out and we’ve thrown away all the dummies so that we don’t have another relapse.

Yesterday we went to see Rob and Caroline Grant’s baby Ada. She’s 5 and a half months old and very sweet. This morning the twins were playing with their babies.

4 January

Lessons learned

Well the dummy relapse was a horrible mistake. Isaac was up from 2:30-3:15 last night. Then again at 4:15 and 5 (we finally all got up at 5:15. So unspeakably tired today. There was not enough coffee.

Weirdly Margot was in a wretched mood this morning and Isaac was fine. When I tried to get her dressed she was upset and outraged when I put a shirt on her, then upset and outraged when I put it on again. Then she took the shirt and got one arm through it, then managed to wrap it around her back and get her other arm through the other sleeve… it was so complicated that I thought I’d have to cut off her shirt. She wept and I finally worked out how to get it off… luckily Tellytubbies distracted her.

They had a good day at nursery and were delighted when I got home and then went straight to bed. 

Here’s hoping for a better night. We’ve thrown away all the spare dummies lest we fall victim to another moment of weakness! 

2 January

Fresh starts

What a week! 11 days of full time parenting has been pretty intense. Particularly as Patrick and Isaac haven’t been very well for the past couple of days. Yesterday I was essentially a single parent and it was completely exhausting. 

I don’t understand it, but Isaac keeps waking up with fevers. He was so miserable yesterday we had a dummy relapse. 

But they’ve also been really fun. Margot’s language is coming on incredibly well. She’s got two word phrases. Which according to Juliet you don’t normally get till they’re two.

Today she said:

More Daddy? (Patrick was having a sleep and she missed him)

Isaac no! (Pretty self explanatory)

Isaac food. (Isaac had stopped eating dinner and Margot picked up his bowl and was holding it out to him)

They have also mastered ‘where’s your nose / head / tummy’.