Monday, January 19, 2009

The modern family

I took Eve to the doctor yesterday because, similarly to her father, whenever there is a major event or a trip she gets a bit ill. This time it is just a snuffle and cough, but she had a mild fever yesterday and I had visions of being at the airport tonight at midnight about to board a flight to the UK and not being allowed through the health check so wanted to get her checked out.

Our lovely paediatrician, LY, has moved practices to an altogether more child friendly one with heavy entrance doors so children can't escape, lots of toys and very helpful reception staff who were more than happy to rescue my wayward child as she tried to climb on top of a table - climbing being her new thing now she has mastered walking and running.

I had to register Eve at the new practice and and fill in a new form. It asked for all the usual details such as name, date of birth, address, but underneath the boxes for the mother's and father's details there was another box labelled "Spouse". I was completely flummoxed and started to fill in the Boy's details for the second time until I realised what it was for. In my English-middle-class-put-up-with-anything-for-the-sake-of-the-kids world I'd never even considered that around half of children actually have 3 or more parents in their life.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

The modern banking couple

My life is not like this, but it did make me giggle

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Word of the year (runner up) in action

It was after I was at the gym yesterday, pulling my second demon ergo of the week that I realised my bottom and thighs are somewhat more rounded and, well, motherly, since I had Eve.

As I was in the shower I finally embraced the changes in my body and found I am now at ease with my slightly bigger bottom and stronger thighs. I will never get rid of the flabby bit on my tummy, but that is OK too (and, if I am being honest, it has been there since I first drank beer aged 15 anyway, baby or not).

I finally feel I am happy with my body.

As do this wonderful bunch of ladies

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Word for the year

As per my friend C, I am going to adopt a word for the year. My word last year was "patience" and set me in pretty good stead considering what happened over the year. That said, the Boy had forgotten and rather unfairly said he wish he'd reminded me of it during my more hormonally induced moments over the year.

Anyway, my word has been a while coming to me this year, but I think I have one I am comfortable with.


I think, with the threat of redundancy and all manner of other life changing events likely to occur this year, it will serve me well.

By back up word is "happy", which I have also warmed to and only narrowly lost the race.

Let them eat cake

Growing up Mum always made us the most amazing cakes for our birthday parties. I remember a train, a horse and even a ferris wheel. They were amazing creations and I have fond memories of helping Mum make butter icing and mixing in the colourings.

As Eve's first birthday approached I was failing as a mother in every respect. I had failed to find the perfect rocking horse for a present, had no card, and 3 days away had not even organised a party for her. My reasoning was that she wouldn't know and ever since a former colleague of mine threw a wildly extravagant and expensive party in a private room in a horribly exclusive members club in HK for her daughter's first I have refused to get caught in the HK birthday competition (although this was the same woman who bought 3 white Gucci babygrows for her newborn, clearly unaware that they vomit all the time).

Anyway, I was told off by friends for not doing anything, if only for the photos for the family, and I was haunted by the idea of Eve sitting with a therapist when she was 30 and complaining that her mother never loved her and as evidence saying that she didn't even get a first birthday party. So emails were sent, food purchased, and we were all set.

Except the cake. I am a reasonably decent cook but can't bake. Really can't bake. It is just a mental block. I thought about buying a cake but this seemed a bit of a cop out so I got up early on the morning of the party to bake a chocolate cake in the shape of a "1". Actually, I woke up at 5am and couldn't get back to sleep for worrying about it.

In the end it was shit. I made a chocolate sponge, cut it into two strips, used butter icing to put them together and covered it in pink icing that slid off and coalesced in a pool on the plate. It was awful. But we put a candle in it, sung a song, had Eve's little friends and our big friends over, and nobody seemed to mind.

I can only hope I get better with practice over the next 16 or so years.

Paper mash

Eve is teething, again, and everything is going into her mouth at the moment. However, her most popular snack is paper or card. She has a little baby homing beacon that allows her to find the nearest, and often most colourful, piece of paper and shove it straight into her mouth. The flurry of Christmas and birthdays has been heaven for her.

Yesterday we went to pick up her birthday present, a lovely wooden rocking horse, and bought her a new swimsuit at the same time. I put it into her handbag (oh yes, she loves handbags as well as shoes) and gave it to her in the car. Five minutes later there was a contented munching sound and the Boy reached back to find the large card label attached to the swimsuit was now a lot smaller and Eve was grinning happily.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009


Anyone who knows me knows that I have something of a shoe fetish. Their pretty colours and shapes delight me. I, therefore, treated myself to the most gorgeous pair of red Christian Louboutin shoes in the winter sale. When I got home I put them in my bedroom. They were in their shoe bag, in their shoe box and in the store's paper bag. I left Eve playing with her toys in the lounge on Saturday for about 5 minutes while I checked on something cooking in the kitchen only to come back to find that Eve, in this time, had been into my bedroom, opened the bag and the box, taken out the shoe bag and carried it into the lounge and put it with her toys.

She may look 100% like the Boy, but she is most definitely her mother's daughter.

Per annum

Eve turned one on Monday this week. To think that, just one year ago, I was being taken into hospital with a bit of a headache is quite scary. I had no idea either how to care for a baby or what I was letting myself in for. One year on and I have a happy, healthy, walking and talking (sort of) little girl who I love completely and with such strength that it often surprises me.

I do my best not to gush, I always found parents gushing to people without children the height of thoughtlessness and tedium, but I feel that on Eve's first birthday I am allowed to break this rule.

Having Eve in my life is without a shadow of a doubt the best thing I have ever done. I don't feel any sense of ownership over her, she is already her own person with her own ideas and desires, which makes me feel even more lucky that I am part of her life. I keep saying, at each stage, that I don't want her to grow up because how she is and what she gives me at each point is so special. However, then she changes and I fall in love with her even more.

I am really looking forward to the next year.

Gush over