Juggling Screen time…..

Warning new mum worry has set in! This time the concern is… is my child having too much screen time? The answer to this question for us at the moment is no but its something that’s on my mind especially as the weather is getting unpredictable and rainy meaning we are a little more confined to the house.

The debate of what is too much screen time could go on for ages and I am sure there are plenty of strong opinions out there, mine is a love/hate relationship! Love because its a gentle way start the day, once breakfast is done, a bit of postman pat to ease into the day ahead isn’t going to do us any harm. Like wise after bath time, I love to snuggle with my freshly washed boy under a blanket and watch Bear Hunt or recently the Lion King- I mean I cant wait til Sonny enjoys cuddling up to watch a film and munch on popcorn!

If Sonny is being extra fussy at dinner or I need to quickly hoover the house then the trusty Ipad is a great distraction and helps me to achieve the mountain of jobs I am juggling daily; Having said that, I am conscious I don’t want it to be the easy option and for Sonny to just absorb the TV rather than create his own little games. I don’t want morning TV to turn into the whole day of CBeebies.

A few people have commented on how well Sonny can entertain himself, sit for a while and interact with his toys and role play, so that must mean the balance is right?

We are also a family who loves to get out of the house, a Sunday stroll or play date,  get some fresh air and tire little legs out plays a massive part in our day so surely as long as we continue to break and mix up the routine, we are onto a winning combo?

I haven’t downloaded any educational games for the Ipad yet, he seems content with the little time his does have with the screen but I’d love to know of any programme you’ve heard of or used yourself that you can recommend. Using the screen for learning purposes will help with the mum worry surely!

Love Harriet x

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Give them an inch and they take the whole hundred miles…..

Why is it when you are doing something nice for your toddler, you know buying the odd ice cream, some time on the ipad, putting on their favourite film why cant they just be content, grateful and decide to then be little treasures for the rest of the afternoon as a way of saying thanks??…At the moment in our house you give Sonny a treat and he wants more! More ice cream, more ‘Bing’, more Gruffalo; the little monkey will push and push and then proceed to tantrum til his little hearts content just to get something else!.

Once a million toys have been launched around the lounge, he’ll eventually calm down leaving two pretty dishevelled parents scratching their heads as to how that little offering of a treat escalated with such dramatic emotions! The tantrums are hard to control once they are in full swing so if I walk away for my own sanity as well as taking the attention off the little devil they usually stop pretty quick and if we haven’t quite reached the peak then distraction is my go-to technique!

The emotions of a toddler will always baffle me, I long for the day when he says thank you Mummy that was really nice (I hope) I will continue to stick to my guns in the hope that you know its shaping him for future life (ohhhh the pressure) and just ride out this phase with regular chocolate consumption!

Please tell me your child does this too!

Love Harriet x

 

 

 

 

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Sonny you are 2!

I literally can’t believe it was a year ago that I wrote Sonny’s first birthday post ! 730 days you have been with us and my goodness you’ve grown into such a little character! I look back and think that first year was such a shock to the system, some days felt super long but the months altogether went quick! We were learning so much and speeding into this massive world of parenthood.

Fast forward, year 1 to year 2, don’t get me wrong hasn’t been easier but it hasn’t been harder, we’ve learnt that we actually are making such an impact into your little life. The affection that you show has surely come from what you’ve received? Your knowledge and development is so rewarding to witness, you really are giving back to what we are so happy to put in.

Everyday we are amazed at something you’ve done or said and you have that power to stop us in our tracks…my heart skipped when you sang ‘twinkle twinkle little star’ on your own whilst walking down the stairs or when we spot diggers and you shout ‘I see it mummy’ literally my womb aches!!

Of course I have never needed a more peaceful evening cup of tea or sweated as much (even after many HIIT sessions) as I do when you sprint off towards a busy road, throw your dinner all over the floor that I literally just cleaned or throw a tantrum in a very public place…you really know how to rise the ol’ body temperature!

18 Months onwards has really taught me patience, I mean repeating ‘hitting hurts’ ‘don’t bite mummy’ ‘you’ll break your toy if you throw it’ a million times a day will push even the most zen of people over the edge!

All that being said I take the repetitive talk and the massive task trying to teach you right from wrong on, I’ll take that as the flip side is so worthwhile, your little face when you get excited over ‘Bing’ or we treat you to an ice cream is just too adorable! The excitement you show us is just way too bloody cute!!

So my little friend roll on 2-3 years, I cant wait to go on more adventures and just generally have more conversations with you, you really are amazing and such a little mate!

Happy birthday for the 17th!

Love you Sonny x

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It’s a Phase….just a phase

 

Recently I had a guest spot on one of my favourite Parenting blogs CheltenhamMaman  last week which was so exciting! I thought I would share the post here if you didn’t get a chance to see it…

As soon as I think we are in a routine and have got this parenting malarky all figured out, its like my toddler knows its time to throw a curve ball, time for another phase to hit, another challenge to divert you off course again!

Currently we are in the ‘I’m going to wake up at 5.30am everyday’ and I can tell you that no amount of ‘Baby Jake’ after breakfast will ever make the day start right. See, Cbeebies is the gauge in the Patchett household and you know its a good day when you turn on the tv and are greeted by ‘Bing’ or ‘Postman Pat’ – That’s a good amount of sleep!

I find this early rising a particulary hard phase for me, I really need/LOVE/need my sleep and anything before 6.30 is still night time in my eyes. I think the sting that makes it worse is that we’ve just got over the baby phase, the waking in the night, teething and midnight cries for dummy, now I’ve been spoilt with better nights sleep again!

Not to mention turning up to work feeling extra bleary-eyed or if its a day at home that early start just makes it feel super long!

We’ve just passed another delightful phase that rears its head far too often at the moment; The phase of not eating much for a couple weeks, refusing all the dishes Sonny couldn’t get enough of last week. This always panics me and sends me into full worry mode; worry that he’ll never eat nutritious proper meals again, worried he forever will be fussy, become an adult man who will only eat chips and fish fingers…my mind takes over and runs wild!

I really need to remind myself not to stress and remember ‘it’s just a phase’.  A week later Sonny is on a 3 course breakfast again and at dinner spooning that vegetable pie into his mouth! This phase happens quite regularly and I’ve read will continue to do so through childhood so I need to learn to ride it out!

There is no way to prepare myself for what’s next but I need to just keep reminding myself, its just a phase and as quickly as it arrives, it will leave and hopefully leave a stronger, slightly more tired looking mum (and dad) behind it!

Love Harriet x

 

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Motherhood…You’re doing a good job….

I know its not just me that has found the transition from being an independent, career loving women into the scary world of motherhood hard Its not just me that gets a little sting and can feel suffocated with the realisation that you can’t just get up and go to the shops or make those last minute dinner plans with friends.

THIS IS NOT A MOAN, I love my family life, Infact take me out for a night out or weekend away and I long to be back with my PJs on, cuppa in one hand, chocolate in the other, sat amongst my lovely husband and little boy! This is me figuring out how such a dramatic change in identity can make you feel all sorts of weird.

Becoming a mother is a massive change in identity, suddenly thrust upon this ‘perfect’ ideal of homemaking life, where you are judged for any tiny decision; breast or bottle, co-sleep or independent, self sooth or hold tight…trying to untangle and navigate this new life is so daunting and no one quite prepares you for it.

Every family situation is different, every baby is different, throw in ever changing ‘best baby practice’ guidelines and you’ve gotta be Sherlock to pass this challenge!

For me, I feel like the first 6 months of motherhood was joined by shock…I mean come on, lack of sleep, responsibility like never before, surely the unshakeable people wobble! Combined with the constant need to check I was doing a good job, the validation that ‘yep you are a good mum’ all contributing to a mound of anxiety. I’m the kind of person that needs validation in my life; Career wise through feedback, appraisals, Exercise by lifting heavier, running further, faster but through Motherhood?? There aren’t any monthly meetings to score you, no progress cards to tick off and you can be left feeling pretty crappy once you start the comparing yourself game especially with the insta mums planned photo ops and props, glossing the realities… it can be a heavy force dragging you down!

My comfort blanket and cosy place lies with my like minded friends, especially the fellow mums or ones who are aware of what’s going on. They get it, pat you on the back whilst covered in Weetabix themselves! I think its important to tell each other how good-a-job we are doing, we are in it together which helps massively (cringe high five). Do I need to label myself and have a clear identity? Probably not right now, one thing I have learnt is that you adapt. It’s ok for my identity to change slightly, I can still be myself just with a scruffy tshirt and darker under eye circles!

Love Harriet x

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