Asher got his first proper injury yesterday! He slipped in the bath (I *knew* there was a reason we try to keep him seated in the bath) and got a rather large bump on his forehead. I was in the shower at the time, getting ready to go out for a drink with some of the Baby Club mothers and when I peered out to see if everything was ok I saw Asher in Sanjay's arms with a giant red bump growing on his head. Sanjay and I freaked out slightly, wondering if we had let our child get a head injury but after a bit of fretting, plenty of Rescue Remedy for all of us and the reassurance of mum who dropped in on her way home from work Asher was declared fine and I still got to go out.

But that slightly scary milestone isn't what today's post is actually about. What I wanted to post about was the sudden realisation I've had over why parents get so anxious about what, and how much, their babies eat.

I always secretly thought that parents who worry about that kind of thing, when their babies or toddlers are obviously thriving, were being a bit ridiculous. I've always believed that as long as parents provide a variety of nutritious food kids will eat when they are hungry, and if they aren't eating they are obviously not that hungry. But now, on days like yesterday, when Asher only picks at his dinner and eats nothing but air for lunch two days running, I get all nervous that he's not eating enough. This morning I spent his nap time preparing food that I thought would be particularly appealing and when lunchtime came (we were at the park with a friend) he wolfed down almost everything I offered and then proceeded to follow his little friend M around, taking his bread and picking up dropped banana and corn cakes.

So next time he throws all his usual favourite foods on the ground in disgust and complains loudly about being confined to his highchair I need to remember that he knows best in these situations. Next time someone tells me that they think he's "skinny" and "doesn't eat much" I have to not only tell them that he eats when he's hungry, but tell myself the same thing, over and over until I believe it.



It hasn't been particularly busy or strangely quiet around here (the two most common excuses for not posting) but I seem to have a chest infection and haven't been in the zone to write, which is a shame, because for the first time in ages I actually have something to write about that isn't really related to Asher.

I keep trying to write a nice linear story of what happened, but it's not working, so I'll start from the end. I finally got back into the house, from where I was stuck on the verandah, by asking a bloke who was doing some work in the garden to buzz my neighbour and then come up, into my home and remove the 'locking stick' that had locked me out and all it cost my was a cup of coffee and some chocolate biscuits. The gardener thought, for a split second, when he walked in and saw the door open a little, that something really weird was going on, but then I pointed to the stick and he worked it out. It wasn't a crazy lady trying to lure him into her home for nefarious purposes, it was a silly bird who had managed to close the sliding door behind her with the locking stick propped up so that the door was 'self-locking' when it closed.

Asher slep through the whole ordeal but woke up shortly afterwards and I didn't need to try breaking the laundry window, spidermaning* to my kitchen window or attempt climbing down from my second story verandah. Happy ending.

* is that the correct form of the verb 'to spiderman'???


Not just Nappy vs. Diaper?

When Asher was born I was in two minds about the whole cloth vs. disposable nappy thing. We decided to try not to get too caught up about it and to see how we went, but the idea was to use mostly cloth, particularly when we were at home and use disposables overnight and when we went out for convenience sake (getting out and about was of primary importance to help minimise the chances of post-partum depression so anything that made that easier was not really negotiable).

I believe that cloth is better environmentally particularly as I didn't use the tumble dryer or chlorine bleaches and only washed with a full load, despite the environmental problems with cotton growing. I loved the cute 'modern cloth' nappies and found that although I needed to change him a little more often they contained those early breastfed baby pooplosions better than the Huggies. I loved that many of the nappies we were using were made with love and care by other mums and felt really good about supporting those small businesses rather than a huge multinational like Kimberly-Clark, and it was probably cheaper for us as well (but I haven't done the maths). When Asher was a tiny baby washing and drying nappies was no hassle - his favourite place to be was on his change mat in his room and at that stage fitted the fold out washing line perfectly. I would pop him on his change mat or in his cot and sing to him as I hung out washing and it would dry quite quickly in the afternoon sun that fills his room, particularly in winter. At that stage it was less hassle than the very regular visits downstairs to the bin would have been.

Have you noticed me using past tense? Well, that's because we aren't using the cloth nappies any more. There are a lot of small reasons really, that are mostly due to Asher's stage of development and the way things have changed in our household. We needed the clothes line real estate in Asher's room for a chest of drawers and the weather warmed up, so we put the washing line outside, and at the same time Asher got more mobile and didn't want to lie on his change mat gazing at his mobile. Now I have to quickly get the washing out while he's having his morning sleep (and I still do a load of washing almost every day). The other difficulty is that we are out and about a lot now and for convenience sake we don't use cloth when we are out so getting a full load of nappies takes a while, by which time the smell from the nappy bucket is gag-o-riffic. I would also need to buy some more cloth nappies to make a full load, now that he's grown out of some of them. I fully realise that this is all a choice thing, and it wouldn't be too much more hassle but I think the payoffs are worth the environmental vandal tag and guilt for us at the moment. He's also SO wriggly that getting a dispo on him is challenging sometimes!

I would wholeheartedly recommend trying cloth to anyone who is even vaguely contemplating it. I would also add that motherly mental health is more important than what type of nappy one uses and that sometimes there are more important things to spend one's energy on. If there is ever another baby in our lives we will be giving cloth another go, at least up until 6-8 months when solid food starts and there are fewer, but stinkier, nappies to deal with. I'm also happy to talk about which of the many types of cloth nappies were best for us at the different stages, but I think that's a bit boring for anyone who isn't thinking of using cloth themselves, so I'll leave it for now.


Flowery goodness!

When Sanjay left for work this morning in his usual rush I was outside on the balcony comforting Asher who was crying because daddy had left (little traitor!). Sanjay came up the path to say something to me( which I didn't hear), and as I looked away for a moment to attend to Asher the buzzer for the building buzzed. I was about to ask Sanjay what the hell he wanted (What now?!?) but instead I just let him in. When there was a knock at the door 30 seconds later I assumed it was Sanjay and I opened it ready to give him a bit of grief for coming back up so that Asher would start crying all over again, but it wasn't Sanjay at the door, it was a guy with a huge bunch of gerberas! Our American houseguest L had sent them to us as a thank-you! They are just lovely and really brightening up the living room!

I also wanted to mention is Asher's new tricks but without a segue because I can't think of any way to get from flowers to baby milestones that isn't terribly laboured. At just over 10 months he has started cruising properly today, although he's been 'walking' with our help or using the walker toy for a while I haven't seen him use furniture to cruise with until today. He's also standing without holding on occasionally, and when he does it Sanjay encourages him to put his hands in the air, which is incredibly cute. He's also (finally) started clapping after my teach-the-baby-to-clap campaign of the last week or two. At this stage it's still pretty quiet but he's definitely clapping (he has even being saying 'ca' when he does it, which I think means 'clap'). All very cute!