Thursday, January 31, 2008

IL PAVONE SUD - OVERPRICED CULINARY MEDIOCRITY

I forgot to blog this the other week, or rather Thomas and I both discussed blogging it and in the end neither of us got round to it. When we sold the flat we decided to go for a nice meal in the Village Curry house, for the 3rd time in as many weeks, taking my parents and Thomas's sister and family too. That night 6 adults, 3 kids and a baby ate an outstanding meal for £95 - amazing, no? A few days later with everyone gone, the kids with André for the night and both our fridge and freezer broken down, we decided a quick meal out for two would be an easy option. Figuring it was too soon to go back to the Village, and both feeling tired, we opted for the local Italian place - Il pavone sud. I had eaten in the Glasgow branch 10 years ago and it was fine so was quite looking forward to my dinner.
It didn't start wonderfully well. It was 7 o'clock on a Thursday night but there were only about 3 tables taken up despite the fact they had 20-30. We decided we wouldn't bother with alcohol as we just wanted some food, so ordered two cokes. When they brought the cokes they were in glasses about a third the size of your usual restaurant glass and half full of icecubes - no big deal. We looked around and were amused by the fact that they were mightily over-staffed - one chef for each person eating there that night, 3 waiters available per table and a restaurant manager wandering around. Maybe they expected it to get busy later.
For starters Thomas ordered the pâté and salad, I ordered the mushrooms. The pâté came discoloured, with less than half a slice of toast cut thinly and a tiny salad. My mushrooms were quite odd - they were boring button mushrooms that had been fried though not in much butter, but they came on sweet brioche bread with hollandaise sauce which was a bit like overthick garlic custard! Interesting - I'll try anything once.
For the main course Thomas had lasagne and I had risotto. The lasagne was unaccompanied - no salad, no garlic bread and about the size of portion I would serve Léon in the house. Thomas ordered a side portion of garlic bread to supplement and it came as two small slices (and was charged extra). The risotto was bland - the rice was cooked to the right consistency but had little or no butter or parmesan in it - like they were trying to make that fattest and most rich of Italian dishes into a healthy diet food - a bad move... give me one of Thomas's risotto's from Jamie Oliver's cookbook any day!
The dessert was cheesecake and though on the set menu, was charged £3 each extra. It was quite nice - green with a sprig of mint on top - but the actual cheesecake was not obviously a particular flavour - it might have been mint because it was green but it might even have been pistachio - I really don't know!
After all this we decided to opt for coffee at home instead.
We asked for the bill - 40 something quid. Not particularly overpriced, though nothing like the value we get at the village...until you consider the starters were hopeless, the maincourses were child portions and we had no alcohol or coffee.
Next time I feel like an easy meal and find myself in the shopping centre in Newton Mearns near Il Pavone sud, I will remember that I can have tiger prawns and two of Marks and Spencer's best steaks with a bottle of wine by walking a few steps further.

LIFE'S A BORE!


It's hard work being a baby!
Originally uploaded by PhylB
Today Anna got to meet her Collins co-bump. Julie, from the Production (no pun intended) department was about 3.5 weeks behind me all through my pregnancy and from half way through we both knew we were having little girls, so we'd planned to meet up once we were both on the other side. I was in the middle of a photoshoot when wee Aimée yawned, instantly Anna, who was staring at her, caught her yawn - I didn't realize that was an instinct that started so early (Anna is 6 weeks old, Aimée 3). It was a very sweet sight.
When I showed this photo to Carol, another dictionary co-worker, her reaction was to ask if we'd shown the girls a dictionary or something equally boring - funny!

OH SHIT!


A little wet
Originally uploaded by carolclarinet
It's raining in our living room! The weather in 2008 has so far been rather gruesome - we lost a dozen roof slates 2 weeks ago and today, during yet another nasty gales plus blizzard storm something must have blown off the front of the house above the living room window because around 6pm a bucketful of water poured in above the window frame and then stopped as suddenly as it started. I guess the insurance company is going to be sick of us by the end of this winter - what with a break in at our other house the same week as the last storm damage claim :-\

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

HUMBLE PIE


The 3 little grandweans
Originally uploaded by PhylB
Today I dropped in on mum for a little while and Amanda dropped by too. As I hadn't known Amanda was coming, I hadn't brought my camera so I stole dad's for the obligatory baby photo shoot. When I uploaded them to flickr the same problem I had described last month occurred. But this time I had checked the camera settings so I suddenly realized the problem had to be in the flickr uploader settings rather than the Nikon settings. I checked them and quickly found that the uploader was downsizing dad's photos to the ludicrous 800x500 pixels. I know in the past dad has been guilty of trying to save his hard disk by taking minuscule photos but this time it looks like flickr is to blame, not dad. So sorry for the rant!

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

BEAUTIFUL SMILES


mirror mirror on the wall...
Originally uploaded by PhylB
Isn't this a sweet photo of Anna smiling at Thomas in the mirror?
:-)

Sunday, January 27, 2008

WHY SCOTLAND CAN NEVER SAVE THE ENVIRONMENT


Wednesday 20 June, 2007
Originally uploaded by Mellie*
I was in Primark yesterday buying some pyjamas for Léon. I had noticed the last time I was in that Primark had switched from plastic to brown paper bags in an environmentally conscious move. Once the shop assistant had finished packing the pyjamas into my nice brow bag, he then filled it with other identical bags. Huh? He explained that all week in the pouring rain people had been complaining that they had got half way down Sauchiehall street before their envirobag had disintegrated leaving their new clothes in a soggy puddle at their feet, so were now trying to cover shoppers by giving them enough bags to get back to their car even on a rainy Saturday in Glasgow! So plastic may be out but each shopper is now using 3 times as many bags!

Saturday, January 26, 2008

WHAT THE HELL IS THIS?


What the hell is this?
Originally uploaded by PhylB
Today I decided that despite my cracked nipple and general hatred of expressing milk, I needed to make a start on Anna's initiation to drinking my breast milk from a bottle if I was to stand any chance at all of going to the Collins dinner dance next Friday.
It didn't start well. Apart from the obvious cracked, and aching boob, I went through the drawers and found all the bits of my much-detested
Avent Isis breast pump - I loathe it with a passion - except the pumping handle, rendering it absolutely 100% useless. So I had to drag myself up to Asda at 9pm in the pouring rain and stormy wind. They had a new Isis for £18, which I knew would be the easiest manual pump, as it is actually the only one I have ever grudgingly got the hang of, but given how little I intend to use it, I figured the Tommee Tippee £10 pump was probably more sensible.
I came home, sterilised it, and sat for 20 minutes producing a pitiful 30ml. I figured that although that was very little, it would be enough to test whether or not Anna could work out how to suck on a bottle, given exclusively breastfed babies are notoriously stupid when it comes to bottles, lapping at the teats but not sucking and getting nowhere fast.
Half an hour and a whimper or two later Anna has got nothing out of the bottle except a great deal of frustration.
She's tired and very unhappy and considering seriously how to learn to shout 'Bugger off, dad!
The steak and haggis on Friday night looks like it might be hanging in the balance!

AVENT NIPPLE PROTECTORS


Today I paid £4-49 for a pair of these hideous things. They are made of fairly rigid plastic, stick out so far they catch the back of the baby's throat and make her gag, and encourage her to suck rather than lap at my breast in the usual way. They dull the contact with the baby so neither of you feels the same closeness. And they need to be sterilised - and given I don't own a steriliser of any sort, that meant cold water sterilising tablets which leave a yucky aftertaste of bleach. On the plus side, they mean I can try to allow my cracked nipple to heal while still breastfeeding but I sure wouldn't recommend them except to protect sore nipples.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

LITTLE LEECH

Too much information I am sure, but don't worry, no photo attached...yes I have got cracked nipples for the first time ever. That little leech has totally destroyed the right one and partially grazed the left. Odd - the others never did that. Mind you, I have noticed recently she's not been opening her mouth widely enough but rather sucking it in lazily past her gums. My mistake was not to correct her, assuming my battleworn boobs could cope with anything the little people could throw at them. Wrong! Ouch!
I now have the challenge of trying to express milk - something I am not particularly good at and I hate doing with a passion - for next Friday complete with wounded boobs, as Thomas and I had intended to attend HarperCollins annual dinner dance for the lovely meal. And however much I enjoy a free meal at the Marriot, I am not willing to compromise my 'not a single mouthful of formula before solid food' motto that I have rigidly stuck to always as I hate the stuff with a passion and all it represents. I guess if the boob continues to ache, I could always wear something loose and hide her inside just till the meal is over ;-)

...lucky for me Thomas happens to have a tube of the antiseptic cream Danish farmers use on cows with sore udders...what?! Cultural differences between close European countries never cease to astound and perplex me!

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

SIMPSONCALLAFRAGILISTICEXPIALA-D'OH!-CIOUS

Yesterday the kids showed me one of the best episodes of the Simpsons I have ever seen. A parody of Mary Poppins, which was fresh in my memory from having watched it with Léon at Xmas, this 8th season episode pokes fun at the US with some wonderful songs. Pity they didn't make a movie-length version! Oh and it even contains a brief spoof of Reservoir Dogs in it too! A classic - even better than the Mr and Mrs Smith spoof they showed me last month.

A PLANNING APPLICATION AND A LOAD OF RUBBISH


I've been having fun today talking to East Renfrewshire Council . First I had to phone them because of the kitchen saga. When I rang MFI yesterday for an appointment, they informed me they wouldn't design me a new kitchen unless I already had a building warrant to move my kitchen into another room - sorry? I have to pay the council money for a planning application to change the internal layout of the rooms in my house, to improve them for my own use, in a way that no one from the outside can see, and wait 8 weeks for the paperwork - 8 weeks in kitchen hell - give me a break!? (Oh this also applies to turning a cupboard into a toilet... must mention to mum and dad they live in an unsellable house with an illegal shoe cupboard!) A great start - grrr - bloody council.
Later today when trying to put out my bin, but being unable to, as it was full half way through the week as always, I got the idea to ring the council once more. This time I asked for the refuse department and asked how I went about getting an extra wheelie bin. Oh you can't, came the reply, we encourage recycling you see! Yes I know you encourage recycling - that's why I already put all my glass, paper, tins etc in my blue bin but you see 6 people create more than one bin of non-recyclable rubbish a week. I pointed out my bin was the same size as my parents' bin three streets away and enquired whether the little girl on the switchboard thought that 2 pensioners used the same bin capacity as 2 adults and 4 kids. Probably not but the only solution is to recycle more, she told me she could offer me a free extra blue recycling bin but no extra normal bin! So from now on I guess I need to buy beer instead of milk for Léon as they recycle beer cans and bottles but not plastic milk bottles. Oh and I should stick to tinned food instead of fresh as they'll recycle my tins but not fresh food packaging!
Oh and a final rant - I asked if they could make a bulk uplift from my address as my old fridge and freezer and packaging from the new one are currently making my garden look like a dump to save me spending a day driving up and down to the dump filling my beautiful car with dirty rubbish - sure they said - £20 per 15 minutes spent by their guys.
Remind me what it is I pay council tax for? Oh yeah - the decent schools...

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

ANNA



Anna aged 4 weeks
Originally uploaded by PhylB
I dressed Anna this morning and went about my business as always. As the day went on I remembered I had a photo of Charlotte wearing the same trousers back in 2000 but couldn't remember when it was taken. I dragged out my old photos from 2000 and began to think I was mistaken. By the time I had passed 3 and then 4 months, I really was at a loss. Imagine my surprise when I found it entitled: I'm taller - Charlotte August 2000!

Monday, January 21, 2008

NEW KITCHEN

We need a new kitchen desperately. Our oven doesn't work. Our gas hob has 4 tiny burners. The extractor is next to useless. The new replacement fridge and freezer are standing in the middle of the room blocking cupboard access and removing use of the work surfaces for a whole wall. The hideous doors are hanging off too. And the tumble dryer is in a different room from the washing machine. Derek told us about a Kitchens Direct and how he'd negotiated them down to nearly half their original quote when they'd installed his kitchen. I went onto their website and found they'd a half price sale. Perfect! I even arranged Derek to come round and use his legal skills to negotiate down the ridiculous price we would no doubt be offered, to one we were prepared to pay.
A salesman drove through from Edinburgh and started badly. Thomas and Derek showed him our new long extension room saying it was perfect for a kitchen, and he started explaining why the current small kitchen would be a better choice. They stuck to their guns and I even, at one point, heard him more or less suggest 2 kitchens - the current one with the washing machine, sink, dishwasher and tumble drier - a kind of wet room, and the new one full of cupboards - not quite my idea of the optimum kitchen triangle. Eventually they beat him into submission - we could choose how many kitchens we needed and which room to use. Result!
Two hours of measuring ensued culminating in an announcement that our kitchen would cost £13k...in their January sale. Wow, a £26k kitchen! I only paid £28k for a 2 storey extension of 4-5 rooms in my old house 3 years ago - even allowing for inflation, kitchens, to my mind, should always cost less than house extensions (especially when the house extension actually included an Ikea kitchen and all the plumbing and gas for it!) Derek then explained how much he expected us to have to pay, given the price of his own kitchen from the same company last year. Miraculously the kitchen fell from £13k to £10.9k to £9.2k over the next 10 minutes and our reply, of course... on your bike, we can get a kitchen in Ikea for £3k and there is no one in the west of Scotland who'd dare to suggest it'd cost £6k to fit it. All in all a disappointing evening.
I'm away to compare Ikea kitchens and B&Q kitchens with MFI kitchens now!
Having checked these now I feel invigorated, and sure I can soon have a perfect new kitchen for much less than nine grand :-)

New Kitchen
Originally uploaded by Thorin

Saturday, January 19, 2008

BABY SNOT


Snotter
Originally uploaded by
http://www.flickr.com/people/42225166@N00
As you know our very own Banana Girl is now 4 weeks old. This phase of babyhood, I find, is marked by snuffliness. Tiny babies, probably up to 2 or even 3 months, from what I remember with the others, have such tiny nostrils, that their airways get completely blocked on a daily basis. They get anxious when they try to breastfeed as they can't breathe properly and eventually they end up sneezing out lumps of snot that even a fully grown builder would be surprised by. I have found from Marcel onwards, that you can loosen the snot and make them sneeze it out by dripping sterile water or saline solution up their noses and massaging olive oil or baby oil into their nose at the same time. I am forever astounded though that I have never seen baby snot mentioned in a single baby care book. I know it isn't a nice topic, but most first time parents must spend weeks at a loss wondering how to help their little cherub breathe and eat. I think I am going to start a Baby Bogey web help page ;-)

MY NEW BEST FRIEND

Thomas is a master of the understatement. This isn't just a tumble dryer. It is a cherished family member already. It is my new best friend. My house no longer has clothes drying everywhere. I no longer spend every waking hour ironing. This is even better at drying and de-creasing than the Candy dryer I had in the house. I wonder how I survived a year and a half without one. I must have been crazy to even have considered it. With 6 people in a wet climate, it is the only way to have any quality time. Everyone should own one - it leads to a higher form of existential contentment! ;-)

Friday, January 18, 2008

WHERE POTTY TRAINING MEETS FARCE

Pudge has well and truly got the hang of the potty now, so there are no more accidents, no more missing the potty accidentally accidents anyway. Picture this... (you'll be glad I am not uploading a photo with this posting.) Léon did a large, smelly poo in his pink potty. He picked it up and brought it round the coffee table to show me. I had just ascertained I needed to go to ASDA on my way home from the schoolrun, so had just turned on my laptop to email Thomas and ask if he wanted to add anything to my shopping list. I praised Léon and suggested he should take his poo to the loo. Instead of walking back the way he had come - that is to say the shortest, most direct route to the loo, he took an unexpected step backwards, tripped over my laptop cable, fell bum-first into my open handbag, bum still all 'yucky' and stood up with my purse glued to his buttocks with the protruding poo! Yeeeeeeuuuuuuuch! I think I want a new purse for my birthday suddenly.

Thought I had to blog this one in brown!

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

LATERAL THINKING


Lots at 8
Originally uploaded by PhylB
Thomas and I were sitting moaning about the fact that the doorbell in the house is too far away from the bedroom to be heard. With Comet bringing us a new frost-free freezer and salmonella-free fridge tomorrow, neither of us want to get up at 7-45am only to sit and wait till 6pm for the unnamed-time delivery slot. As we scratched our heads, Charlotte looked at us, as always, as if we were worse than stupid and instantly suggested reversing the baby monitor circuit - ie putting the baby unit in the downstairs hall, and the adult unit in the bedroom overnight so instead of hearing baby snooze while making breakfast, we'd hear the bell from under our duvet. I guess I'm just not as smart as an 8 year old...

POOR PUDGE

Poor Pudge seems to have broken out in a terrible eczema rash in the last 36 hours. Who knows what has set it off, or what to avoid in the future - I just know I have to get him to the doc in the morning to get something to ease his itching, poor wee guy. And hopefully get some allergy testing set up so we can avoid this in the future. What a worry...

Sunday, January 13, 2008

GOODBYE ROSE


Place of conception
Originally uploaded by
viralbus
It went through! The flat sale finally went through on Friday at around 1pm. We got an email confirming they had released the keys to 'Eleanor', the new owner, and later in the afternoon, we passed her coming out of the front door (and interestingly going straight into the letting agency next door - curious!), so she must definitely have coughed up the money, even if it'll float around some intermediate place for a couple of weeks before finally showing up in Thomas's account so we can clear all the credit cards that have got us through since September 07.
What a relief... though I'll miss free(ish) parking in town and the ability to quickly run to Sauchiehall street for a quick shopping spree, or Cambridge street for an Italian meal.

Saturday, January 12, 2008

YUCK!


Loved this sign below the wndow
Originally uploaded by PhylB
I passed this yesterday on the south bank of the river Clyde and I must admit it turned my stomach. I know I am not much of a drinker but find it hard to imagine anyone could face 'Alcohol at 8am' except my old deceased Gramps of course!

Friday, January 11, 2008

POTTY ABOUT HIS POTTY!


Potty about his potty!
Originally uploaded by
PhylB
At last! After a week of clueless pee and poo everywhere around the house, in pants and everywhere else, followed by a week of pee and poo in the wrong places but at least accompanied by an embarrassed look, Léon has finally got it! Completely. He says potty, he uses it, he pees over and over looking very proud, and wants to carry it by himself to the loo and even waves it goodbye as he flushes it away! And he poos in it too - hurray! We're definitely on the right side of the hill now - a week from now, I estimate, we'll even manage ASDA in a pair of pants - what a clever wee man :-)

DO BLONDES HAVE MORE FUN?

Having looked at this, I am absolutely convinced no one actually suits blonde hair - in fact I'm away to dye mine dark brown!

SNOW PHOTOGRAPHY

The BBC liked my pegs :-) (Number 7)

Thursday, January 10, 2008

EASY TO PLEASE

As you know, the past 5 months have been difficult. Two mortgages taking the entire salary on the first day of every month, no child maintenance and latterly 4 kids and me on maternity leave, has left few spare pennies for enjoyment. Santa is crumbling under the weight of his visa bill at the moment. With the flat sale potentially going through tomorrow, (fingers, toes and eyes crossed), Thomas asked the kids where they would like to go for dinner next week to celebrate if they could choose any restaurant in Glasgow... Charlotte jumped in immediately with: Can we go for meatballs in Ikea? I am speechless - she really is a child of minimal ambition!

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

PROUD OF HIS BIG BOY BED


Proud of his new bed
Originally uploaded by PhylB
Now Léon is getting the hang of potty, we thought we'd let him move into his big boy bed, complete with car duvet as a way of acknowledging his achievement. It was love at first sight. He looked happier than he had on receiving his Xmas presents, and definitely more proud. He went happily to bed without a moan and fell asleep quickly.

Monday, January 07, 2008

POST-IRONING PONDERINGS


Pudge's new pants
Originally uploaded by
PhylB
I've just been ironing for about 4 hours - why did I think a family of 6 was a good idea? Anyway, I know I used to ponder socks while dealing with laundry (I still do - I will blog my odd socks next time I have a spare minute). However what struck me tonight was the different stages kids go through with relation to underwear... depending on their age and sex. Now, I was doing about 6 days ironing, so as you may imagine the basket contained 6 pairs of adult female pants, 6 pairs of adult male pants, and even, slightly surprisingly 6 pairs of little 8 year-old girl pants - however there seems to be a huge difference between boys of 2 and 10 - and I am in doubt as to which is best! My basket contained only 1 (yeuch) pair of 10 year old boy pants, and 18 (yeuch) pairs of age 2 boys pants!

Sunday, January 06, 2008

CHARLOTTE

Charlotte was thrilled to find it had snowed for her 8th birthday! Pity it didn't lie longer.

A DECENT-SIZED FRIDGE


The kitchen-to-be
Originally uploaded by
PhylB
I already moaned about this house's cowboy appliances. We happened upon a thermometer in the flat the other day so decided to measure the temperature inside our dodgy built-in fridge - an impressive 11°C. Over Xmas Thomas had turned off the heating in both the porch and the kitchen-to-be in order to store extra drinks and vegetables for the big family meal on 26 December. We measured it - a slightly better 6°C. So I have just suggested we turn off the fridge altogether and move everything to the porch until we can afford a new fridge :-\

Saturday, January 05, 2008

SIBLING GENETICS

Siblings are puzzling. Take Marcel and Charlotte. When they are sitting about downstairs with us, Charlotte appears on the surface to be more willing to help with setting the table, or tidying the living room. She argues and grumps less when asked to lend a hand. One might even be tempted to conclude that she is less lazy, more helpful and tidier. However, when you set foot in their own rooms, a whole other story shows itself. If I open Marcel's bedroom door, I may find the odd sweetie wrapper or empty coke can, and if I open his wardrobe, the clean washing I have asked him to put away is there inside neatly in piles of T-shirts, underwear, school clothes etc, all on separate shelves, much as I would do myself. Charlotte's room, on the other hand, if you can get the door open, is a minefield of dirty clothes strewn on the floor, her wardrobe has everything I have just ironed, thrown in together on one shelf and often mixed with dirty clothes she has put back in the wardrobe (arg). This is as far from my own personality as you get. Even looking in her wardrobe makes me a nervous wreck. I couldn't bear to live in such a chaotic way. I find it interesting that on the surface I feel she is more like me, while scratching it shows quite the opposite. I think Marcel is fairly lazy but likes order, whereas Charlotte, though dynamic and helpful, can tolerate a much higher level of chaos. It will be interesting to visit their homes as adults. I fear Charlotte's student dorm may be so scary, I may find myself twitching nervously for days after a visit! And to be quite frank, I think they would both do well to work hard at school, as both would function better as adults, if they manage to earn a salary high enough to pay for 'staff' ;-)
I wonder what Léon and Anna will bring to the chaos in a few years time?

SNOWMEN

As Léon mentioned on his own blog, he found his first real encounter with snow yesterday linguistically challenging. Over breakfast, he kept pointing at the garage saying 'snowman house', this was later followed by my car being described as a 'snowman car'. As the morning went on however, it became clear, Léon simply lacked the words 'snowy' and 'made of snow' in his vocabulary and was therefore using a word he knows well from Charlotte's early childhood fetish, assigning it these meanings!
11 Nov - snowmen

EXTRA WASHING


In the washing basket
Originally uploaded by viralbus
I think it is fair to say we have now calculated, in real terms, the maximum number of inhabitants a house can have in winter in Scotland without a tumble drier and still continue to function. Unfortunately that number seems to be 2 adults and 3 children. At that point, doing a daily washing, using a clothes horse, all free radiators, door tops and the backs of the dining room chairs meant we seemed to have reached a static all in use always situation. Throwing a dribbly, pooing December baby into the mix however has made the status quo untenable. Roll on the flar sale so I can order the tumble drier!

Friday, January 04, 2008

ALL THE BUCHANAN GRANDCHILDREN

How likely is it that you get 5 kids, including 3 babies all sitting nicely and staring in the right direction for a group family photo? Amazing, no? So how bloody infuriating is it to upload it only to find out the silly plonker, whose camera you borrowed to take it, has it set on a resolution of a mere 800x531 pixels - ie something you can't even blow up to the size of a postage stamp to print for the living room wall or office desk. Now that'd be bad enough if it was taken with a 2 mega pixel mobile phone but it is a bloody Nikon DSLR no less. DAD ARE YOU INSANE????? Why buy a DSLR and set it on 800x531 as a standard?? Our Sony alpha is set at approx 3500x2323 standard, that way if you get a nice photo of the grandchildren you can blow it up to A4, and if you don't you can simply resize it before you save it. PLEASE stop using a Nikon DSLR to take photos at a worse resolution than Thomas's mobile phone - or swap him your Nikon for his mobile phone at the very least, you crazy old fool!

Thursday, January 03, 2008

GLASGOW, XMAS 2007

Pity I was too busy having a baby this Xmas to multitask - looks like I missed a bit of a photo opportunity in the city centre a couple of weekends back! :-)

Wednesday, January 02, 2008

POTTY TRAINING - THE UPDATE

Today's potty training didn't seem any better. Today Léon managed one pee on Charlotte's back, while playing horses, one pee on his aquadraw - making for an interesting shape, and one poo in a nappy during a trip to Tesco :-( So much for the nice new Bob the builder and Thomas the Tank Engine pants...

MONOPOLY, MODERN STYLE


monopoly, modern style
Originally uploaded by PhylB
Thomas's parents bought Marcel monopoly for his birthday in July. With a 2 year old and an 11 day old baby, we couldn't find a function to attend to bring in the new year, so decided letting the big ones stay up past midnight to play monopoly while drinking shloer, was a reasonable compromise. The first thing that struck me about the new monopoly was the inflationary hike in prices. My 1970s London version gave me £200 for passing go. This new Danish version gave me 2 000 000 Danish Kroner (about £200 000).
The chance cards were also more modern: I won a million in a reality TV programme and was fined for using my mobile while driving!
Even the tokens were modern: a mobile phone, a hamburger and a roller blade boot!
The hotels (see photo) are now NY-type sky scrapers, but the most radical, if you look at the photo has to be that there is no money any more! Thomas is paying his 1 million fine for landing on Marcel's hotel by VISA, and Marcel is registering it on his electronic card reader!
I feel old!

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

POTTY TRAINING


Potty training
Originally uploaded by
bombhead
With us all home for the next 2 weeks, now seems like the optimum time for potty training. I had intended to start about 8 weeks ago but as I was completely unable to bend over to scrub the carpet, I decided it had to be on hold till after the bump arrived. So today we started. Two potties were strategically placed downstairs, old pants were looked out, bribes of chocolate were offered, we explained how big a boy he'd be to use his potty, how only babies needed nappies etc etc. And the result 12 hours on? No pees in the potty, 4 wet pairs of pants and, I believe absolutely no clue of what he is meant to be doing! :-( Tomorrow I am going to take him to choose some 'big boy' pants of his own in the hope that will inspire him slightly more...

DÉJÀ VU


German Wasp
Originally uploaded by markopoulos

Is it something about January? You may remember my rant when I was unexpectedly stung by a wasp in January last year. That was in the flat in Glasgow, so imagine my surprise this evening when Thomas came down stairs in the house holding another dead wasp, explaining he'd encountered it walking along our upstairs hall - give me strength. Is it global warming, or just victimization?