Sunday, December 20, 2009

Thank God for the NHS and some wonderful staff at Frankie and Bennys

Last weekend was a nightmare weekend. We went away down to Banbury on Saturday morning after James' Christmas party with all the mums and babies that we go to our groups with. Nice easy drive down, lovely new Holiday Inn Express, met up with Mike's father and sister and had dinner at Frankie and Benny's (James shrieking because of the Christmas parties being in and the poppers etc going off).

Went to bed, he didn't sleep much and woke up at 4.30am but did go back to sleep but he was generally being a bit of a monkey all morning. After we'd had breakfast I was sat on the floor in the restaurant at the Holiday Inn putting his coat on and he was pulling and wanting to be running around. He broke away from my hold and turned to the right, tripped up over his new shoes (which were on his feet but they're a little bit bigger than the sandals he's had before) and fell to his knees, smashing his head on a solid wooden chair which was underneath the table next to us.

He got a huge lump and an instant bruise with a lovely purple line right across it where he'd hit the edge of the chair but after five minutes of crying he was okay and running around as normal so we went off on our merry way and visited the local wildlife park and then went to Upton House before saying goodbye to Mike's family.
We went to visit our best friends who live in Banbury and James had his tea there and then Mike and I headed off back to the Holiday Inn to get James ready for bed and to pop to Frankie and Benny's for our tea. We decided to get steak as it was our first proper meal out for months and James was sleeping and dozing off in his chair.

The food had just arrived when he sat up, coughed once and then projectile vomited everywhere. Nightmare! The staff were brilliant, took our meals back and put them on the hot plate and Mike went to grab clean clothes from the hotel while I cleaned James up and took the Buggy Snuggle off the pushchair etc. At this point wasn't really thinking much of him being sick as he'd been okay during the day. Got him changed, settled back into the buggy, food was due to be brought back and he did it again.

Only this time, he went white, lost all colour in his lips and went unconscious and couldn't be roused so I phoned for an ambulance and they were amazing, they arrived in less than five minutes. The staff at F&B were amazing too, they'd boxed up our dinner when James had been sick the second time (though we never got to eat it!) and the general manager then came over when he went unconscious and was checking him for food/choking etc and putting him in the recovery position just as the ambulance arrived. The ambulance lady just took one look at him, grabbed him and legged it for the door with Mike following and me just stood there in shock.

Anyways, long story short, I went in the ambulance with James who'd started to come round in the ambulance, they had him hooked up on a heart monitor and he was getting oxygen. We got to A&E and they took James straight into the Resus Room and weighed him and shoved all sorts of electrodes and gadgets on him and where he projectile vomited for the third time all over me!

They weren't happy with his heart rate and something else (can't remember now) and so he was put into a Recovery Room and hooked up to an ECG machine and some other machine monitoring his oxygen levels, heart rate etc and they said they were going to call out the radiologists for a CT Scan and get the anesthetist out because of him being so tiny they didn't think he'd stay still in the scanner. He threw up again and was really pale and lethargic and had this huge massive bump/bruise on his forehead and all these doctors kept coming in and looking at him and the machine's alarms kept going off.

We went for the CT Scan and I was able to stay in the room with him covered in huge radiation shield clothing so God knows what I looked like, as he was really drowsy and so they taped him down on the machine and fortunately he stayed still for it all.
Then we played the waiting game while all the various paediatricians were called out and they waited for the CT Scan results.
Fortunately it came back normal and all his other neurological tests were clear so they decided to put him under observation overnight and they checked him every two hours. Because he was still being sick, they weren't sure if he had a bug or if it was pressure on the brain/bleeding on the brain so we just had to wait and see.

Thank God, they think he had concussion which caused the unconsciousness and the first couple of lots of vomiting, then they think he possibly had a totally unrelated bug which kept him sick for the next 12 hours or that he was being sick from the stress of the bump/hospital trauma. We finally got released at 8pm yesterday and stayed another night at the Holiday Inn and then got back home tonight.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Woolly loveliness

I've been so lucky this last month to have received some amazing wool creations from various places and I've been busy trying not to buy too much because the next Buy British Month is coming up in November.
Last BBM I got some amazing things and I've just now, finally, got my last custom slot from then sorted. Mich at Woolly Wumpkins is making me some longies for James in her gorgeous Nimbus colourway.
That, along with the longies we got yesterday from Ali at Pixie Knits, who kindly knitted up the Elvira Babylonglegs Merino DK I'd bought, mean we're up to date on all things woolly with the exception of two soakers from Lisa at The Nappy Garden.

And, speaking of the Nappy Garden, Lisa is one serious cloth temptress. Just this month alone I have on the way, via TNG, a Holdens Landing LWI dip dye toddler bedbug and I still don't know whether it's going to be all autumnal colours or all icy winter ones!
Also from Lisa and on their way shortly, are two Dunk n Fluff large nappies in some fabulous hard to find fishy prints which will be brilliantly gender neutral in the event of James ever getting a brother or sister.

While we're on the subject of babies, one of my oldest friends has just given birth to her first child, a little boy, who went nameless for almost a week. He has now been given an amazing name and it's a wonderful tribute to her late father, who was killed when we were only five years old while working as a photographer for the newspaper I later went on to work for.
So, I'd like to say a huge congratulations to Amy and Alan on the arrival of Wilfred John Samuel, welcome to the world little one.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

You see, it happened again

It's now October. I was sure I looked at my blog and wrote something in September but apparently not. That means it's effectively two months since the last time I wrote, or more accurately, rambled away with a big pile of nothingness on my blog.

So, what Japes with James have we been up to in the last two months. Well, I'm ashamed to say, not a lot. Mike and I went to a fabulous wedding in September but James was invited to that as it was his godfather to be getting married and he behaved impecably throughout both the service and the reception right up until the moment he zonked out asleep in his infant carrier around 8.30pm.

We've been really lucky that he's quite small for his age as he's literally only just growing out of the infant carrier that came with our travel system. It means we're now heading to Paul Stride at York to get him a rear facing Stage 1 car seat as they're so much safer.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

A bit of a ramble

Sometimes I remember I have a blog and I pop along and write something. It's not always important or interesting but it helps me keep up with the idea that one day I might go back to work as a journalist and it generally helps if you can write properly.

I say this because of late it seems my conversation consists of phrases like
"James do you need a clean nappy?"
"Oh look at the Wiggles James?"
"Where have you thrown your dummy now James?" and
"Stop being a whiny child I'm only sat two feet away from you".

Now, while they are proper sentences, they're hardly going to win the Pulitzer Prize. Although I'd have to work for an American newspaper to win that anyway and that's so not going to happen. But, I digress.

James has a number of nicknames and, of course, as parents always do, you tend to refer to things by their "child friendly" name, so the cars become the papaps, the dog is a doggie or a wuff wuff, milk becomes milky and the cellular blanket is now a blankee. So everyone once in a while it's nice to remember I'm an adult to and that I can talk about things which have nothing to do with poo or sleeping or food intake or weight gain.

We have a book club that the mums who met at a number of baby groups in town get together at to be "adults". This month's book was Kurt Vonegot's Slaughterhouse 5. I have to say, it's one of the oddest books I've read but I did enjoy it in a strange sort of way. I couldn't quite get my head around what it was supposed to be, history, anti-war, fiction, factual, a good read or just plain old confusing.

Next month's book is Brave New World by Aldous Huxley. I want to burst into song ala David Essex in War of the Worlds whenever I hear this book title. You know, the whole Jeff Wayne concept album with narration by Richard Burton. Anyway, I'll shut up now.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Yet another month goes by

I really need to frame myself and remember to log into my blog more often. Then again, I have a good excuse this time, I've been on my holidays.

We went down to Green End, the beautiful house at the bottom of the New Forest on the coast opposite The Needles off the Isle of Wight, which has been in Mike's family for three generations. It's such a lovely house, a friendly house, if that makes any sense. Whenever we arrive I always think it looks happy to see us.
The house itself is a double roofed, sash windowed cottage probably built around the end of the 1700s and probably by one of the salt pan owners. It's whitewashed with climbing roses all over it and black painted windows and has about a half acre of garden laid out with informal wildflower beds and rosemary hedges.

If I could pick it up and move it up here I would love to live in permanently. Unfortunately the little village that it's located in is one of those filled with retired sailing people and hasn't much facilities, although there's a great pub called The Gun which does amazing Lymington River crab salads, and there's a bigger village just down the road which has shops and banks and restaurants.

So, we went down for Mike's family's annual do, which has been moving later and later in the year, it used to be in June, now it's July and we're expecting it to move to August next year. This year there was a very small contingent of family but we still had a lovely time. We then stayed for another week and the following weekend, had a load of our gaming mates down for a few days of beer and good food.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Where does the time go?

So it's nearly a month since my last post. Where does the time go? We've had a mixed and varied last few weeks but it culminated with the crappy crap crap news that my beloved Grandma had died yesterday morning.

My dad's mum, I used to spend my Saturdays every week with my Grandma and Granddad, I used to stay when my Granddad went off on his fishing trips many years ago, I used to ride in their yellow 3-wheeler when I was little.
My Grandma wasn't a hugely demonstrative lady but I knew she loved me and was proud of me. She used to write poetry, I think if she'd been born in a different age, she would have been a great writer. Maybe it's because of her that I became a journalist. She kept a scrapbook with all my early stories in it and she was very proud of me.

I will miss her very much.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

I've found another forum to spam

I like forums. They provide a means for like minded (and sometimes complete opposites) people to get together and spout off. I like forums that provide a chance for me to get my teeth into a topic and to really say what I mean rather than having to tone it down on some commercial sites.

So, it was with great delight I followed a link from Katie's blog to the What's Your Opinion On? forum, which had been set up after a wee flounce from a commercially sponsored site that shall remain nameless but whose initials are BC.

I love this place. Here we can have massive disagreements on all sorts of subjects but without anyone falling out or getting into a snit. There's a great bunch of people on there, we don't all agree, but so far we all seem to respect everyone else's opinions and it's great!

You can find the forum here

Sunday, May 17, 2009

While I'm on the subject of Buy British Month

It's not just wool that attracts me to the lovely ladies at Buy British Month. I got two stunning T-shirts for Mike and I from Cat at Nappy Elite.
She's the lovely lady who makes the Kiwi Quick Flips which lots of mummy's have found to be a godsend for night nappies. I've not tried one yet, but they're on my list to give a go once I have spare (ahahahahaha) cash.

But, this post is about T-shirts not nappies so on we go. Cat posted up a couple of Tees she done on the Cloth Nappy Addicts forum and I thought one of them would be perfect for Mike for his birthday in July. So I popped off a PM to Cat and sure enough, they could be made in XXL and, as it would be rude not to, I decided I was having one myself.

Mike wouldn't shut up about wanting to know what he was getting and so when the parcel arrived, I had to open it and show him and this is what we got.

Wool, it's for more than just jumpers!

I have a new addiction. I never really thought of myself as having an addictive personality but it seems that I was wrong.

Drink - take it or leave it. Cigarettes - stopped dead when I was pregnant with James. Drugs - never been interested. Cloth nappies - urm well, you see, they're soft, and have embroidery on them. Wool - a whole new ball game!

I am addicted to wool. Not just any wool though, beautiful, gorgeous, soft merino and cashmere and Blue Faced Leicester. The sort of wool that gets turned into soakers, shorties, crops and longies.
It started, really, with envy at Katie's collection of wool for Lal. Then Sarah posted some pre-loved longies on Cloth Tots and I bought them to give them a try for James and well, it just sort of snowballed from there.

My aunty Jen made me some soakers, just plain smokey blue, work fab at night over James' BumHuggers and Baby Beehinds. Then I saw some wool hand dyed by the fabulous Sarah at Babylonglegs and I was hooked.

We now have a beautiful pair of custom shorties which are actually a bit more like crops, knitted by Yvonne at The Nappy Garden (those of the snail) and another pair on the way from the same fabulous girls in the most amazing colour combination of black, lime, orange, yellow, purple, pink, they really are a many coloured dream pair!

Then I bought a combo from Buy British Month on the great Cloth Nappy Addicts forum, a Pickle Paints T shirt with Emmie monster (she likes little snails and walking with dandilions, how cute is that!) and some shorties knitted by Evelyn at The Soaring Sheep.
My friend Zoe is knitting me some longies from the Sleepy Times Knit pattern in another Babylonglegs colourway called Big Cat, all browns, oranges, blacks and yellows, like a little tiger and the lovely lovely Jo at Halobaby is saving me some of her VHC dyed wool to knit into something at the end of BBM.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

A Thought On Snails

I've always been fond of snails, I put it down to Bryan the Snail from the Magic Roundabout. My mother is horrible and stands on them so they don't eat her plants. She says they're just slugs with a shell but I think they're more than that.

You don't see slugs in children's books but there's lots and lots of snails and so I figure, they're better than slugs and they're definitely cuter.
So, it was with huge delight that I discovered that my custom shorties - oh didn't I mention them before? - have got a little snail embroidered on the left leg.

The shorties, or possibly crops depending on how long James' legs are when we get them hopefully tomorrow (not that James' legs grow or shrink daily but you know what I mean!) came from Lisa and Yvonne at The Nappy Garden. I bought some new Bippi Stuff bibs for James from them during Real Nappy Week and they had a free draw that everyone who bought something was entered into.

I won!

I never win anything usually so it was a bit of a shock, but a very pleasant one, to be told I could choose to have something knitted for James. We've got a couple of longies I bought pre-loved and my wonderful friend Zoe is knitting us another pair, so I thought, as it's allegedly going to be getting warmer as we move into Summer, that I should get some shorties.

Lisa asked what colours I'd like and I thought something in greens and yellows, spring like colours, would be wonderful for this time of year and she found the most gorgeous wool which has now been khitted up by her mum Yvonne into James' shorties.

You can find a picture of them on their blog here

Saturday, May 09, 2009

Goldfish memory

Is it true that the humble goldfish has a memory of about five seconds? I suppose it would probably be a good thing if it were so as I'm not sure how many of them would choose to commit hare-kiri by flipping out of the bowl instead of going round in yet another circle.

But, is there a point to this random musing on the life of a goldfish. Well yes, it's an example of just how my brain is functioning, or not, at the moment.
Since having James I must admit that my brain, that once managed to hold its own in a room full of national journalists and still get an exclusive story, now can't always even manage to remember to fill the kettle up before switching it on.
It means, if anyone's still keeping up with this ramble, that I keep forgetting about this blog.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Poorly baby

James has had the vomiting bug once already, about a month ago. That involved me sitting up with him all night for two nights in case he was sick and choked. It wasn't pleasant to watch my little boy dry heaving.

He also had the most horrendous explosive poo, fortunately that didn't last very long so you can imagine how overjoyed I was to be woken up on Tuesday to the sound of him coughing and making choking noises once more.
I went to get him from his cot and he was boiling hot, I mean his skin was burning up like he'd been exposed to the sun for hours. But he didn't have a temperature. Still, I took him downstairs, got him some milk, gave him some of it and then tried the Cheerieos when he projectile vomited all over the high chair tray. Thank God that it was on is all I can say.

So, off we went upstairs, got him changed, woke his dad and told him we were off to the doctor's, which is, fortunately, just over the road. We arrived, I registered him with my usual doctor, yay six people in front of us, this was at 8.30am.

I took James into the children's playroom, where he promptly vomited again. Fortunately my cousin Lucy was on hand to watch him while I went looking for tissue and cleaning lady and to apologise to the staff for his explosion. Rang his dad and he came across with the changing bag and some more clothes to change him into. Which he then threw up all over again.

Anyway, an hour or so later, during which time poor James has just sat like a little teddy clinging onto his dad, we see the doctor, who rules out a throat infection and pronounces the vomiting bug once more.

So, another two nights of sitting in the feeding chair with James in the travel cot in the spare room just in case and now explosive poo. Unfortunately, his cloth nappies are feeling the brunt of it and so we're back in disposables overnight so that we don't end up with everything getting stained.

Ah the joys of motherhood!

Thursday, March 05, 2009

Nappy obsession

I am, I will happily admit, obsessed with nappies. Not the disposable variety you get in the supermarkets, but the fabulous cloth ones you buy from the interwebs.

I blame it completely on the girls from my Baby Centre birth board. Miana runs her own company selling nappies and accessories from home and Emma has just some of the most gorgeous custom fluff for her son Ewan that I've seen.

Of course, being female and all that, I was covetous and envious of the gorgeous fluff and so I went to investigate further, found the Cloth Tots forum, where people offer up their new and pre-loved nappies to a new home, and from the BC Cloth Nappy Forum, I found Wee Notions, Upsy Daisy and the work at home mums who knit the most gorgeous soakers, shorties and longies to go over baby's nappy and give them the cutest bums.

There's another person who is to blame for me considering cloth in the first place though, outside of the Leeds City Council nappy woman who came to speak at my ante natal classes, and that's my Aussie friend Kath. Her little girl is just about a year older than James and it was Kath who first showed me that a cloth resuable nappy no longer resembled the Terry nappies of my childhood which required industrial boiling for a month to get them clean.
My Dad is proud of the fact that he could get my and my brother's nappies cleaner than my Mum when he had to wash them. He's regaled me with tales of standing in the kitchen stirring a pot full of terry towelling for hours on end - I think he's exaggerating, but probably not by much.

Argh at this blogging lark

I keep forgetting I've got a blog, yes I know it's difficult to forget that you went and signed up to tell the world about what you're doing - whether they want to know or not - but with an 11-month-old in the house, believe me I sometimes forget what day it is.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Japes with James

So it begins, James is nearly a year old, I should have started this much earlier but at least this way there will be a record somewhere of what his life was like as a small baby and toddler.

I should explain more. James is my son, he's 11 months old and was born in March 2008, my first child at the age of 38. He was two weeks late, arriving at two minutes past midnight on the 16th instead of the 5th like he was due to.
His birth was fairly short, as I was induced, but rather painful as he decided to move from his perfect position to posterior, which meant his back was scraping along my spine with every contraction - nice!
He was born face up and all in one go, none of this letting the head come out and then taking a breath, out he shot like a rocket. But it was possibly the most incredible feeling I've ever had as the pain just disappeared once he arrived. He was small, only 6lbs 15oz, so would likely have been even smaller had he arrived on time.
We breastfed until he self weaned at the age of five and a half months and now he's a baby led weaner, eating pretty much what he wants along side some lumpy mush and jars of ready made food.