Living Arrows 25/52 (2016)

It’s been a busy week of house moving stress and you’d think for once the universe would give us a break…but no.

I don’t think Gabe is actually ill this week but he’s possible teething again and we’ve had a weekend of hourly wake ups through the night and then getting up for the day before 5 am. I seriously hope he improves before I go away to Britmums Live next weekend or poor Barry is really going to suffer! Toby has stopped waking up crying for me in the night at least – I have no idea what that was about but I’m glad it’s stopped.

The one bonus of this week is that both both boys have been having some extra time at nursery so I can get house moving admin done and I can’t lie, it’s been bliss to have a few hours peace and quiet!

Gabe is all about the standing up nowadays, the trouble is he’s not worked out how to sit back down again yet (safely at least) so after standing for a while he just starts shouting until someone comes to rescue him…and then immediately just pulls himself up again! He was very proud of himself for standing up under the table the other day though.

Gabe standing under the table

Toby is at such a brilliant age at the moment – he’s really starting to get into imaginative play and he’s finally embraced the super hero cape and mask I got him for Christmas (which he refused to wear at the time). He loves to put it on and zoom around the house shouting ‘Super T – to the rescue’! This picture isn’t quite in focus but I love it anyway…

Super T to the rescue


Living Arrows

Living Arrows 23/52 (2016)

It’s been a fairly quiet week for us by all accounts. Gabe is mostly recovered from his chicken pox (although his sleep is still all over the place) and Toby has been, well, a toddler.

Gabe is really a pro-crawler now, he is literally getting everywhere and into everything. This week he has also started pulling himself up on the furniture. He’s pretty confident with kneeling up but has also managed to pull himself onto his feet a few times too. I’m really hoping that as he can move more and be more independent he will start being a bit more content to explore by himself and entertain himself. At the moment if you are holding him he is desperate to get down and sometimes even almost dives out of your arms, but if you put him down he starts crying again after a few minutes. And quite frankly it’s driving me bonkers!

Gabe is pulling himself to standing

Toby has been spending a lot of time outside, both at home and at nursery, in this lovely sunshine we’ve been having. Mostly he’s been loving it but it seems to be totally exhausting for him so we’ve had a few tired meltdowns this last week too. Generally though he’s still just his usual cheery self…

Toby's lovely smile

Living Arrows

Gabriel is nine months old

I’m a bit late with this month’s update – Gabe was actually nine months old last week while we were on holiday at Center Parcs but with that, house viewings and the chicken pox I’m only just getting round to writing this.

Gabriel is nine months old

Well in last month’s update I said I hoped there would be less illness this month but unfortunately that hasn’t really been the case. On top of his habitual cold Gabe has also had a stomach bug which he caught off Toby but whereas Toby was just sick a couple of times then back to normal after a couple of days, Gabe had really nasty nappies for almost two weeks. Almost as soon as he got over that Toby got the chicken pox and then it was inevitable Gabe would get it too. His first spot appeared on Monday and today he’s still only got about 10 so I’m really hoping that is it and he is going to escape with only a mild dose of the pox. On top of all that he is still suffering with his reflux, particularly it seems at bedtimes, and our paediatrician appointment which was scheduled for 17th June (already about three months after we were referred by the GP) has now been moved to 15th July!

What do you mean it's the wrong way round

On a happier note Gabe hasn’t had any more teeth this month, although I did think he nasty nappies were due to teething for a while. Weaning has been a bit all over the place, along with Gabe’s appetite this month. He’s still being spoon fed most of his meals but he is getting much better and chewing lumpier food, and at picking different foods up and eating them himself. Rice cakes and yoghurt have been firm favourites this month along with lots of different pouch meals (we’ve mostly been using the HiPP Organic 7+ month ones). We’ve also changed Gabe’s formula to HiPP Organic this month. I’d heard that a lot of reflux babies find it gentler on their tummies, and I was also hoping the prebiotics in it would help get his insides back to normal after the stomach bug. I don’t know if it has actually made any difference but he isn’t any worse so we’re going to stick with it for the moment.

Gabe enjoying lunch

With all the illness, and the disruption of a holiday sleep is still rather illusive. We’re having lots of night waking still but whereas I used to be able to settle him with his dummy and a rub on the back or a cuddle now he nearly always needs milk to get back to sleep. I’m pretty sure this is because of his reflux rather than hunger as Toby used to be exactly the same. It never made any difference how much he ate during the day he would still need milk if he woke in the night. At least for now Gabe does usually go back to sleep quickly after he’s had his milk so I don’t have to be awake for too long in the night. We’ve been doing quite a bit of co-sleeping this month too – mostly when he wakes for the second time at about 4 am and isn’t that keen on going back to sleep. Usually if I bring him in bed with me at that point we manage another hour or two of sleep.

Crawling takes concentration

The big development this month has been that Gabe has started crawling! He started off just commando crawling but in the last few days he’s pretty much crawling up on his hands knees. Which means nothing is safe any more and we’ve had to break out the playpen again. Gabe isn’t a huge fan for any length of time but at least it gives me somewhere safe to put him for a few minutes while I go to the loo or something!

Crawled for the first time

I haven’t had Gabe weighed for ages now but using the probably very inaccurate method of weighing myself then both of us together he weighs 19lb 3oz. He’s still wearing 9-12 month clothes but I think we’re going to have to move into the next size soon, at least for sleepsuits as he is so long, especially with a massive night time cloth bum too!

Gabriel from 0-9 months

I think that’s all for this month, I just really, really, really hope Gabe makes it to 10 months without getting ill again!

Gabriel is eight months old

It’s time for another monthly update already and I’d love to say it’s been a happy one but since last month’s update Gabe has continued to be ill pretty much constantly. He’s had another cold, conjunctivitis again, and although his cold has started to clear up in the last few days he now has an ear infection too! On top of all that he’s got another three teeth since last month making for six in total. No wonder the poor kid has been miserable!

Gabe is eight months old

Despite the ear infection though (which the doctor thinks is just external and has given us ear drops to clear up) Gabe has been much happier in the last week. He’s got his appetite back and his sleep has improved a bit too. We’re still getting a lot of wake ups most nights but we have had the odd night without him waking up until 4 or 5 am again which is about the best we can hope for from Gabe at the moment I think. His morning naps are mostly back on track as well but afternoons are still all over the place.

We did decide to put Gabe’s cot in our bedroom in the end. He was just getting too big for the co-sleeper and although there’s not much room in our bedroom now I think he is better in the cot. And as much as I loved the co-sleeper I am enjoying being able to get out of bed without having to slide down to the bottom first!

I really hope Gabe’s sleep starts to improve now he’s feeling better and there are no more teeth coming for the moment. Toby’s sleep was great when he was Gabe’s age but went really rubbish when he got to about one. He’s only been consistently well since Christmas so with that and being pregnant and then Gabe not sleeping I reckon I could count on one hand the number of really good nights’ sleep I’ve had in the last two years! I seriously can’t remember the last time I wasn’t tired.

Big smiles and a sore nose at eight months old

So despite being ill and not having much of an appetite some days Gabe is continuing to grow at quite a pace. I haven’t actually had him weighed or measured him this month but he is comfortably wearing all his 9-12 month clothes now. I think he might be even bigger than Toby was at this age so who knows what he’ll be like by the time he’s a toddler! I’m not surprised though because he does love his food – we’ve probably been spoon feeding more than we did with Toby and Gabe is definitely having more shop bought baby food whereas Toby only really ate the same as us. We’ve got an exciting collaboration coming up soon that I can’t wait to share with you so I’ll be writing a lot more about Gabe’s weaning experience over the coming weeks and months.

As far as movement goes we haven’t got any crawling yet but like Toby at eight months Gabe is quite adept at spinning on his tummy and shuffling backwards. He’s managing to get up on his hands and knees but still isn’t really near properly crawling. I know I shouldn’t really keep comparing them but Toby was 10 months before he started crawling properly and to be honest I’m quite happy for Gabe to still stay more or less where I leave him for the time being!

Can't quite reach it...

I think that’s probably about it for this month. I really hope that over the next month we can have a lot less illness and a lot more sleep!

0-8 months

Gabriel is seven months old

I’m Oh my goodness – seven months old already. Time is totally flying by!

Today I am seven months old

This month has been a pretty miserable one for Gabe unfortunately. He had just got over a cold and croup (which thankfully only lasted a day or two) when he caught another cold that went on for over two weeks. He was so full of snot and there was tons of mucus coming out of his eyes as well which then ended up needing eye drops. It’s so horrible when a baby has a cold; it affects their sleep and feeding and there’s not really much you can do to help them apart from administer Calpol and cuddles.

It didn’t help that on top of the cold Gabe also had the first of his top teeth coming at the same time – poor boy! He now has three teeth and the second top one doesn’t look to be far behind either.

Despite all the illness Gabe has still been managing plenty of smiles, especially for his brother who he clearly adores. And Toby loves making Gabe smile or laugh too which is so lovely to watch.

A half smile

He has been making some more physical developments this month too – he can now sit confidently and unsupported, he can roll both ways and he is starting to try and get his knees under himself when he’s on his tummy. He’s really starting to get interested in everything now, and will even sit and play with toys on his own for a while.

Playing with toys

He now weighs 17lb 11oz and is 73cm tall. He’s mostly wearing 9-12 month clothes now – I do make them tall!

Gabe is still sleeping in our room in the Chicco Next 2 Me – I think we’re going to have to move him into his cot soon though as he’s starting to try and roll over in his sleep and keeps getting jammed up against the sides of the crib. Which means we’re going to have to make a decision about where we are going to put the cot. The long term plan is that Toby and Gabe will share a room but with Gabe still waking up between 4 and 5 am most mornings I’m not sure that’s such a good idea yet. The cot will just about fit next to our bed, but it’s going to be squeeze!

Talking of sleep; things were a bit disrupted with Gabe being ill but we seem to be back to going to bed about 6:30 pm and sleeping through to somewhere between 4 and 5 am. He sometimes wakes up earlier in the night but I can usually get him back to sleep by putting his dummy back in and giving him a rub on the back. I usually bring him downstairs when he wakes in the morning and after a bottle he will sometimes go back to sleep with me on the sofa. It doesn’t always work like that though and sometimes 4:30 am can see him up for the day!

We’ve got into quite a good routine with morning naps now and he will usually have another bottle between 9 and 9:30 am depending what time he got up and then nap in his crib for between an hour and a half to two hours. We’ve had two mammoth three hour naps this week, but I think that’s because he’s still recovering from all his illness.

Afternoon naps don’t tend to go so well though! At the moment I’m trying to get him to stay awake when we take Toby to nursery at 1 pm so that we can get home, have another bottle and have another nap but this doesn’t always work. The trouble is if he falls asleep in the car then that 10 or 15 minutes means he thinks he’s done sleeping for the afternoon, which of course is fine until he’s super-grumpy and ready for bed at 4 pm! We have managed to stick to the plan a few times this week, and he’s had his afternoon nap for an hour or so on me while I watch TV. In a way I’d like it if he’d have his afternoon nap in his crib as well but I do quite enjoy the sleepy cuddles too…

I suppose the big development this month has been weaning. I think Gabe had just had a couple of days on solids at his last monthly update – a month in and he’s really getting the hang of it. I wouldn’t say he has three meals a day but he sits in his high chair three times and has something to eat. So far it’s mostly just been bits of what Toby is having. He seems to quite like cucumber and he’s loving bread sticks – but I think that’s maybe just because they are easy to get in his mouth! He really likes yoghurt and those fruit purée pouches too and he seems just as happy being spoon fed as he is having finger foods.

I think that’s probably about it for this month. I’m hoping next month brings less illness and more sleep for everyone! And how could I finish this update without sharing this adorable picture of my little teddy bear?

Seven month old teddy bear

Until next month then here’s Gabe from one week to seven months old…

0-7 months

Gabriel is six months old

Jeezy peeps! Six months old already. I’m sure with Toby it took a lot longer to get to this point but it seems like with Gabe that I blinked and suddenly my tiny newborn baby is sitting in a high chair sucking on a bagel!

six months old

This last month has been a bit of a tough one for Gabe; he’s really been suffering with teething (we do now have a tiny corner of tooth poking through so hopefully the rest will follow soon) and he’s had a horrible cold for the last few days including a nasty croupy cough at the weekend. He does seem to be on the mend now at least so fingers crossed he recovers fully soon.

With teething and his cold he has been off his milk a bit too which has probably made him even more grumpy. I had him weighed last week though and he’s still just under the 50th centile for weight at 16lb 15oz. He’s still very long too and has almost grown out of his 6-9 month sleepsuits already!

first tooth

As well as the hint of a first tooth there have been a couple of other firsts this month too. Gabe has started sitting up by himself, although he’s still pretty wobbly. He’s managing to stay upright for longer and longer every day though and I’m sure he’ll be sitting properly by himself soon enough.

sitting up

I think when he can sit up a bit better Toby will enjoy interacting with him more too. Gabe can roll both ways as well now but he doesn’t really seem that bothered about doing it very much at the moment!

Big grin

The other first this month has just been happening in the last few days and that is Gabe’s first food. I remember being very eager to start weaning with Toby but this time I not that excited about the prospect if I’m honest! Gabe hasn’t really shown that much interest in food but we decided to just put him in the high chair, put a few things in front of him and see what happened. Actually, I gave him a bit of bread stick to try last week – he sucked on it and did swallow a bit but threw it back up a few minutes later so I wasn’t entirely sure how things were going to go.


Yesterday Toby was having a cinnamon raisin bagel for lunch so I gave Gabe a bit to try. Probably not top of the list of first weaning foods but it’s much easier to just give Gabe whatever Toby is having! I also gave him a little bit of melon too. He certainly got the idea of what he was supposed to do with it much quicker than Toby did. It was weeks before Toby would pick anything up and put it in his mouth by himself but within a few minutes Gabe was giving that bagel a good old suck! I’m not sure how much of it he ate (if any) but there seemed to be less by the end than what he started with. He had a good go on the melon too, and today tried some toast, a bit more melon and some cucumber.


I’m sure with Gabe we’ll end up following the same combination of baby led weaning and spoon feeding. Toby never had purée, he always just ate what we did but if it was something messy that needed a spoon then I would feed him. Perhaps Gabe will have other ideas about spoon feeding but that’s the general plan anyway.

Speaking of feeding, Gabe is still having Gaviscon in his milk and ranitidine for his reflux. I actually thought last month that he was getting a lot better but then teething and a cold seems to have brought his symptoms back with a vengeance. He isn’t sick as much now although we still have the odd day with lots of sick but he was definitely showing symptoms of more silent reflux in the last few weeks. He’s had his ranitidine dose increased now and that seems to be keeping things under control again for the moment.

As I mentioned earlier Gabe has had a cold for the last week or so too. I actually ended up taking him to the out of hours GP at the weekend because he was so congested and seemed to be struggling for breath. He had what sounded like croup but the doctor gave him a good check over and decided he didn’t need any treatment, and thankfully we only had one really sleepless night and he’s been getting slowly better since.

And talking of sleepless nights – on the whole Gabe sleeps really well at night. He usually goes to bed about 6:30 pm and sleeps until some time between 4 and 5 am. Sometimes he wakes a bit earlier but I can usually get him back to sleep again by putting his dummy back in and giving him a rub on the back – this is one reason I’m glad he still sleeps in his co-sleeper crib next to me in our room! I do wish he could just manage another hour in bed – getting up at 6 doesn’t seem anywhere near as bad as getting up at 5! It wouldn’t be too bad if he went back to sleep again. Sometimes he does and I manage to get back to bed for a bit but fairly regularly Gabe is just falling back to sleep when Toby is getting up. Naps are still a bit hit and miss – the really bad teething week did mess up his naps a lot but thankfully we seem to be back to a decent morning nap of an hour and a half to two hours which he has in bed unless we’re out in which case he’ll sleep in the car or the buggy. Afternoon naps are a bit more haphazard and tend to happen in the car more often than not. I’m hoping we might crack an afternoon nap at home at some point – Toby is at nursery four afternoons a week so if Gabe would have a decent nap at home I might actually manage to get some things done around the house!

0-6 months

Anyway I think that’s probably about it for this month – I can’t wait to see what the next month brings..

Gabriel is five months old

Five months old! Time is just absolutely racing by – I can’t believe Gabe is five months old already. I thought it went quickly when Toby was a baby but with Gabe it’s absolutely bonkers! I’ve just been having a read of Toby’s five month update and I know I shouldn’t compare them but it’s surprising how similar my boys are at this age.

Five months old

I haven’t had Gabe weighed since he had he last set of immunisations at 19 weeks but he was 15lb 4oz then. That puts him between the 25th and 50th centiles which is pretty much where Toby was too after they were both born between the 9th and 25th. Gabe is definitely long like his brother too – he’s currently 69 cm and is wearing nearly all 6-9 month clothes already.

After a four month sleep regression Toby was back to mostly sleeping through the night at five months – I don’t know what happened though because he doesn’t sleep through any more! With Gabe his sleep hasn’t really changed much. Most nights he sleeps from about 6:30 pm until between 4 and 5 am. Sometimes he wakes up early but I can usually get him back to sleep with a little help from Ewan the Dream Sheep and a rub on the back. I’m usually up for about an hour with him early morning and he’ll have a bottle and a clean nappy then it’s back to bed, if I’m lucky for another hour or two but sometimes only half an hour or so until he’s back awake again. Having said that the last two nights he’s woken up again within an hour of going to bed, and then again in the early hours of the morning. I don’t know if he’s having a growth spurt or a leap or what but I hope whatever it is passes soon.

Cutie chops

Gabe is still sleeping in our room in his Chicco Next 2 Me co-sleeper crib whereas Toby was sleeping in the big cot in his room from being 6 weeks old. I don’t know if this makes any difference to Gabe’s sleep. Perhaps he is disturbed by us sometimes but it also means I can resettle him if he stirs. With Toby he would have more chance to get worked up to a full on cry before we heard him on the monitor and it would usually need a bottle to get him back to sleep. I think Toby was napping better than Gabe at this age too but that is really just a result of the circumstances we now find ourselves in. With Toby I could stay at home and but him to bed when he looked like he needed to sleep but now Gabe has to fit in around nursery runs and other errands. We do usually manage to get him to have a nap at home in the morning and for the last couple of weeks he has slept for a couple of hours most mornings. I’m really lucky that Toby is so well behaved and doesn’t get up to much mischief so I can leave him downstairs whilst I put Gabe to bed. Afternoon naps for Gabe usually happen either in the car or buggy, or sometimes on my lap at home whilst I watch TV.

Rolled over

Gabe rolled from his front to his back a couple of weeks ago but just like his brother he did it about three times then hasn’t bothered since! He certainly wriggles around plenty when he’s lying down so I’m sure it won’t be long before he’s rolling all over the place. He’s not sitting up yet but he’s fairly stable and just needs a little bit of support. I can’t believe we’ll be starting weaning soon, although I’m not in any huge rush! I think weaning will be different this time round as Gabe already tries to eat everything he gets his hands on where Toby never really put anything in his mouth and it was a good month or two before he really started feeding himself.

Roll over

Gabe’s personality is starting to come out more now. He’s pretty chilled out these days and will quite happily sit in his bouncer or lie on the play mat for quite a long time while I get on with looking after Toby and getting stuff done. He’s absolutely fascinated with his big brother and saves most of his smiles and giggles for him. Toby for his part is becoming much more interested in Gabe now he’s realised he can get him to react, and he also helps by putting his dummy in for him or pulling his bib down off his face when he’s managed to flip it up for the fiftieth time that day! He still tries to get him to stop crying by saying ‘stop Gabe’ which isn’t always that effective! I can’t wait to see their relationship develop though and I’m sure it won’t be too long before we see them playing together and getting up to mischief!

0-5 months

I think that’s probably about it for this month. Another month and my little baby Gabe will be half a year old!

Let's Talk Mommy

Toby is two and a half years old

I don’t know where the time has gone. I mean, I know I have a nearly five month old baby as well but how on earth did my little baby boy end up as a walking, talking, two and a half year old boy?!

Toby is two and a half

And Toby really is a little boy now. He’s heading for being a metre tall (98cm at the last measuring) and he’s wearing mostly age 3-4 clothes! He’s still super skinny though – he weighs 2st 3lb having only put on 3lb in the last year. Sometimes I worry about how thin he is – you can see every rib and feel every bump in his spine. But he eats plenty (although has become quite fussy recently – more on that later) and has lots of energy so I’m assured it’s nothing to be concerned about.

Toby’s speech has come on loads in the last couple of months. He now mostly speaks in sentences, although not necessarily with all the words in the right order. He knows so many words now and manages to surprise us almost every day with what he knows. A couple of weeks ago I downloaded an app onto my phone for him to play with which has all sorts of different animals and different activities. One of them is about what animals eat and a picture of a squirrel came up. I asked Toby if he knew what squirrels eat and he came out with ‘squirrels eat acorns’ – I have no idea where he got that from! He really understands emotions now as well and will quite often say ‘my sad’ (although usually if he’s not getting his own way rather than if he’s actually sad). It’s quite likely that moments later he’ll follow it up with ‘I’m so happy now’. For the first time yesterday he actually said ‘I love my mummy’ – I tell Toby I love him all the time but he has never said it to me before. I was so surprised I had to get him to repeat it!

Toby still wants to do everything for himself – ‘Toby do it’ or ‘my do it’ is still heard several times a day. This is mostly great and we do try and encourage him to do things for himself, but it can be occasionally frustrating when it means everything takes three times as long! He really can do lots of things though, his motor skills are great for his age and he has no trouble doing things like unscrewing lids. He still struggles with putting shoes and coats on but he’s trying and getting better all the time. He loves climbing and jumping too, although he can take his time to get used to things like soft play before he’s confident enough to go off exploring on his own. He’s quite happy to go running off up a hill if we’re out for a walk somewhere though!


The main big change since I wrote Toby’s 27 month update is that he has now moved into his big boy bed. The cot he had isn’t one that converts to a bed (and we’ll be needing it for Gabe soon anyway) so we decided just to move him straight into a single bed. And on the whole it has been a resounding success. We let Toby ‘help’ when we dismantled the cot and built the bed so he would know exactly what was going on, and I’d got him some space themed bedding to go with the rest of his room. We have a Lindam bed guard to stop him falling out of bed and so far at least he hasn’t got out of bed at all once he is put in at night. Even when he wakes up in the morning he just sits there waiting on the bed until one of us goes to get him up. We still have one wake up a night most nights and I usually end up getting in bed with him to get him back to sleep. Although he hasn’t woken up for the last two nights so fingers crossed that continues.

Toby is still going to nursery four afternoons a week and things have settled down since he started his new nursery back in October. He still cries every day when I drop him off but they tell me he calms down within a few minutes and then he’s absolutely fine. We were getting concerned that he was refusing to eat his tea at nursery but that seems to be improving since he went back after the Christmas break.

Food generally can be a bit frustrating – from weaning up until about six months ago Toby would eat anything you put in front of him but in the last few months he has become increasingly fussy. He’ll like something one day then refuse it the next, or he’ll ask for something then refuse to eat it. I was starting to get stressed at meal times and we were all getting wound up with Barry and me trying to encourage Toby to eat, and then getting annoyed when he didn’t, then he would get upset and totally refuse to eat anything. Then I read something a couple of weeks ago (I’d link to it but I can’t remember where I read it!) which basically said just live by the six words ‘you don’t have to eat it’. Provide a variety of different foods and try and include at least one thing at every meal that you think they are likely to eat and then leave them to it. And do you know what? It’s actually working. I’m less stressed and therefore so it Toby, meaning he’s probably eating more anyway.

We’ve also realised that by letting Toby help prepare food, even if it’s just getting the cereal off the shelf or putting potatoes in the pan, he is much more likely to sit at the table without any fuss. I’ve been doing quite a lot of baking with Toby lately too – we’ve made gingerbread biscuits (or ginner man biggits as Toby calls them), chocolate cake and banana bread. Even though he can’t really do much at the moment he enjoys standing on a chair in the kitchen with an apron on and putting things in bowls or stirring. I even got him washing up after making the banana bread yesterday. Start as we mean to go on eh?

baking with mummy

Even though he has got more fussy about food, he’s just like his mum in that he never says no to cake or chocolate! He doesn’t have loads of sweet foods but he certainly enjoys them. I’m doing my best not to use sweet things as ‘treats’ or rewards. I have such a terrible relationship with food and my weight and I really don’t want to pass that on to Toby so we’re trying to just see sweet things as foods we eat sometimes, just like everything else. Although to be honest at the moment I’m just happy to get some extra calories into him in the hope of trying to put on at least a little bit of weight!

On the whole Toby is just a lovely little boy and we couldn’t be more proud of him. I know every parent says that but he really is amazing…most of the time! Several people have commented on how polite he is, and he does say please and thank you, mostly without prompting. He’s starting to become a really lovely big brother too. I think now Gabe is smiling and a bit more responsive he’s getting a bit more interesting for Toby. He likes to show him toys and will pull his bib down for him when Gabe’s managed to cover his face for the tenth time that morning! I actually can’t wait for the next few months when hopefully we’ll see a real relationship start to develop between them.

I could probably keep writing about Toby all day, and I’m sure there were things I wanted to say that I’ve forgotten (oh yeah, potty training – that’s still nowhere near happening!) but I think this post is probably long enough already! I can’t believe the next update I’ll be writing about Toby will be when he’s three. He certainly isn’t a baby any more.

Smiling toddler

Linking up with Lauren at Belle Du Brighton for #WhatMyKidDid

Gabriel is four months old

I’m a little bit late with Gabe’s update this month – if you’ve read any of my posts over the last week or so you’ll know we’ve all been ill with various coughs and colds and unfortunately blogging just hasn’t been top of the agenda. Also, I blame Barry who has got me into playing Fallout 4 on the PlayStation so if I do have a spare half hour in the evening then that’s what I’ve mostly been up to!

Four months old

Anyway, contrary to what I usually say, it actually feels like quite a long time since I wrote Gabe’s three month update. Although I still can’t quite believe that he is already four months old!

After needing to be held almost constantly for the first two months of his life Gabe has now turned out to be a rather chilled out baby. He’ll now quite happily sit in his bouncer or lie wriggling on his play mat while I get on with things around the house or when I’m occupied with Toby. He still has times when he being held is the only option – he has especially liked to show his daddy this side at 4 am over the last week!

Gabe is feeding and napping in more of a regular pattern now too. He usually wakes up once in the night for a bottle, which is OK apart from that he then often seems to wake up again a couple of hours later (at around 5:30) and be ready to start the day. He then has four bottles through the rest of the day, two or three naps and is in bed asleep by 7 pm. I try and make sure he gets at least one of his naps at home in bed and he sleeps for anything from 30 minutes to two and a half hours!

He is still taking Gaviscon and ranitidine for reflux although I’m actually not entirely sure he needs them. He certainly doesn’t have the same severity of symptoms that Toby had. Gabe still has some days when he’s really sick but quite often he seems fine. I’m thinking of trying him without the ranitidine after Christmas – there’s really no way of knowing whether he needs it or not other than trying it.

I don’t know how much Gabe weighs now – the last time he was weighed was at 14 weeks and he weighed 13lb 7oz so I’m sure he’s well over a stone by now. He’s definitely long like his brother – I’ve just had to move him into 6-9 month sleepsuits, although most of his other 3-6 month clothes still fit.

Funny face at four months old

He’s full of personality these days and pulls the funniest faces sometimes. He’s such a chatterbox, he gurgles and babbles much more than Toby ever did. He’s full of smiles too, big grins that are so adorable! It seems he  hasn’t inherited the dimples that Barry and I have like his brother did.

Little smiler at four months

Gabe has developed massively with his gross motor skills this month. He loves grabbing at the toys on his play mat or bouncer, he’s really close to rolling over too. He’s definitely found his hands this month too and can often be found with several fingers (or a whole fist) stuffed in his mouth.

Almost rolling over

He is totally fascinated with his brother too. He sits and watches him as he plays, and quite often if he’s getting a bit grumpy waiting for a feed he’ll stop crying when Toby goes over to him. And as for Toby, he is definitely more tolerant of Gabe now, although he’ll still often tell me to put Gabe in his bouncer or put him in bed when he wants me to himself. I think he’s starting to get a bit more interesting for Toby now too so I’m hopeful that he will continue to interact with Gabe more over the next few months.

I think that’s probably about it for this month, I can’t believe that in another couple of months we’ll be starting to think about weaning and it won’t be long until Gabe’s on the move then the chaos will really start!

0-4 months

Looking forward to forty

Yes you read that right. I’m looking forward to being forty. It’s still a few years off yet (2018 to be exact) but there are several reasons I’m looking forward to forty. It’s not the age as such that I’m looking forward too, more where my life will (hopefully) be in three years time…

Looking forward to forty

We’re currently in the process of trying to relocate from Scotland down to England to be nearer both mine and Barry’s parents. Hopefully within the next six months or so we’ll have moved so in three years time my boys probably won’t remember a time when they didn’t see their grandparents every week or two, rather than only a few times a year like they get at the moment.

We viewed some houses just last week and we think we’ve found one we’d like to buy. It needs quite a lot doing to it in terms of decoration, plus it has potential to extend or remodel in the future but all that will take time, so it’s another thing that hopefully in three years we’ll be living in a house (even if it’s not that one) that is decorated to our taste and works well for our family.

Of course moving nearer to my parents has the added benefit of providing us with babysitters much closer to home. So in three years time I’ll be able to enjoy the odd night out, or even away, with my husband. We’ve only had one night away from Toby since he was born – that was back at Easter this year, and in fact that was the last time we went out as a couple at all!

The other thing I’m looking forward to is that the boys will be 5 and 3 by the time I’m 40 and hopefully a bit easier to manage. I know there will be different challenges as they get older but just things like being able to go on holiday, or even out for the day without having to take seemingly the entire contents of our house with us will be amazing. At the moment, with buggies, travel cots, nappies and everything else there’s barely room for us in the car! There’s also the fact that we’ll be able to go on holiday to places where the kids are old enough to join in with activities (and go to kids’ clubs giving us a bit of a break too!) and hopefully they’ll find it exciting going away and sleeping somewhere different rather than freaking out. The last holiday we attempted we abandoned after one night because Toby screamed his head off every time we tried to get him anywhere near the bed he was supposed to be sleeping in. (To be fair that’s better already – he slept in a double bed at my parents’ house last week and was been absolute fine).

Work-wise I don’t really know where I’ll be in three years time, or where I want to be. I can’t really see myself going back to full time teaching but you never know. I’d love to set up my own business teaching French and Spanish to pre-schoolers, and maybe doing some tutoring as well but I need to look into it in more detail and see if there’s actually a demand for it in the area we’re planning on moving to. If I do go back to teaching in a school, even part time, then Toby will be at school and Gabe at pre-school so we won’t have anywhere near the childcare costs we’ll have if I go back to work at the end of my maternity leave.

So although I don’t want to wish my life away, and I know I should make the most of these baby days with Gabe, especially because we’re not planning on having any more babies, I’m still very much looking forward to forty. Are you looking forward to being a particular age, or time in the future? Or are you happy with where you are now?


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