Tuesday, 24 May 2011

Birthday blues and twos

George had plenty of birthday surprises – balloons, a Mickey Mouse 'Happy Birthday' banner – along with matching cups, plates and cupcakes – and a raft of presents including a trike, a wooden tool set, colouring books, jigsaws, clothes, trains, planes, cars and a Caterpillar truck that goes forward, backward, dumps its load and shakes like a real lorry.

Mummy's squad of Mickey Mouse cupcakes...

...and Daddy's attempt at Thomas the Tank Engine icing...

...but George is more impressed with the candles

Strangest surprise of all was the impatient knocking at the door that turned out to be four police officers along with two police cars and an ambulance (I'm sure some of the neighbours must have wondered what all the blue flashing lights were too).

Before we opened the door, we had to go upstairs to fetch the key to unlock it and by the way they were knocking, if we had been a few moments longer, it wouldn't have been long before they came crashing through with a battering ram. By the time my mind had done a panicky search, we were informed that the ambulance team had asked the police to come to our address in case they needed to gain entry.

It seems they had the wrong address, but were also a bit flummoxed as to what the correct address could have been. George found it all very exciting and, during a perplexed pause when the officers all looked at each other quizzically, I informed them that it was George's birthday. Happily they all wished him 'happy birthday' which made the whole scenario even more surreal.

Anyway, we watched from the window as they tried to make sense of things on their radios, and after a few minutes they left and George waved bye-bye to the neenahs.

A little later, uncle Russ came to visit – his first weekend home after a three-month army stint in Cyprus – and brought George a battery-powered police bike complete with siren, headlight and blue flashing light. George was quite excited and was soon protective and not keen on anyone (other children) getting near it – I'm just surprised he didn't say "move along please, nothing to see here".

"Golf Echo Oscar Romeo Golf Echo"

Thursday, 19 May 2011

Avoiding the question

I have a feeling George might make a good politician one day...

The other morning I asked George if he wanted to "fetch a book to read with Daddy" and he went to his little bookcase and came back with an animal-themed sticker and activity book. We spent the next 20 minutes or so sticking lions, leopards, snakes and frogs all through the book.

We also had a little colouring competition – not the kind when you see who's best at staying inside the lines, but the kind when George has to see if he can knock Daddy's crayon out of the way so that he can colour-in the exact same spot, and the one whose colour dominates the page is the winner.

After our sticker and activity fun I told George it was time to clean his teeth before we went out. He quite likes brushing his teeth and usually clambers up the stairs shouting "teesh, teesh, teesh". This time he insisted bringing one of his stickers with him – a beaver. In the frenzy for his toothbrush I managed to prise the sticker from George's fingers and stick it to the bathroom tiles just above the sink, out of the way. George brushed his teeth happily and when finished forgot all about his beaver sticker as he ran to the stairgate at the top of the stairs.

In the evening, Mummy took George to clean his teeth before bedtime. When she opened the bathroom door she had the lovely surprise of a cartoon beaver sitting just behind the tap. She pointed to the sticker and said "Look George, what's that?" Expecting him to reply "sticker" or "maminal" (George's way of saying 'animal'), George absolved himself of all blame by saying "Daddy!"

Saturday, 14 May 2011

The soundtrack of our lives

A bit late this week – probably because both mummy and I have been feeling a little tired.

It has been quite busy too – George's birthday is just around the corner and I've been putting up a swing/slide combo in the garden in readiness. An instruction tome rather than an instruction sheet and a profusion of components that all look very similar, coupled with the task of digging out a safe area for the correct amount of playbark and you're talking about a week's work.

Anyway, I've got the play equipment all assembled and I've nearly finished the ground work.

All this is not the only reason why we're tired. It's mainly down to George's changing sleeping habits. For some reason he wakes up each day between 5 and 6am and starts singing Twinkle Twinkle Little Star to himself, after which comes an endless repetition of "Mammi, Mammi, Mammi, Mammi", until 7am when we let him into our bed for his morning milk.

We decided to wire up a TV/DVD in our bedroom so that we could put Thomas the Tank Engine on, hopefully keeping George occupied – and sitting still – while mummy and daddy could enjoy a little longer with our eyes shut. There are eight episodes and it won't be long before we know them off by heart.

So, at the moment, it seems there is a soundtrack of nursery rhymes and TV themes running through our everyday lives. From the 5am gurglings mentioned above to the closing credits of In the Night Garden just before George's bedtime. I even woke up the other day with a tune in my head and when I eventually placed it realised I had been humming the theme of The Tweenies.

When George was only a few months old I began an attempt to educate him with lessons in 'classic albums' each breakfast time – but it appears 1) I may have started lessons too early in life, or 2) daddy's taste in music is not as good as Noddy's.

Wednesday, 4 May 2011

Simple pleasures

It doesn't matter what life throws at you, there is always something, often the simplest of pleasures, that bring a smile to your face... even more so when George is around.