Back in October, I set myself four rules that I felt were important. A winter later, here's how I did:
No laptop use while Emily is awake.
This was going really well. Enter the ipad, and things fell apart for a while until I gave myself a little metaphorical shaking and put it away. It doesn't mean I don't stop to check my mail a few times or tweet a few more times but I'm not sat there glued to it all day (as I may have been before). I get down on the floor and play with Emily, we build towers, we read, we tickle and get tickled. Sometimes we just cuddle in front of TV. It's all good.
Safe to say I failed this one. Miserably. I've still not yet read another book, but I have picked up a few magazines over the last few weeks and have made myself sit down for a few minutes to relax every now and then. I need to learn the meaning of that word "relax" all over again, or so it would seem. I have also added a few books to my Kindle that sound promising (and have even read the first two chapters of one of them), so there is actually some hope.
For a while, we read every day after Emily's bath. Until I realised she had no patience for it at that time as all she wanted was to get to sleep. So we moved storytime to before her bath. And that worked nicely. But we read so many books throughout the day, there are always books around somewhere (there are even two little ones that live in my handbag for when we're out), and we read bathbooks too, so in the end "storytime" per se faded away and we still read lots. We just do it whenever.
(She even has a magazine of her own which she loves leafing through)
Get out every day.
We've been good with this. However I've also been good about realising that just because we don't go out one day, just because we stay in and just enjoy Emily's toys and I catch up on some things around the house, or just take it easy, doesn't make the day a failure. We've achieved a good balance. We go out often, we have people over often, we have us time often.
Ultimately, things are going well. Emily and I seem to have reached a point where we know how to work with each other. I am slowly even starting to feel comfortable cooking dinner in the kitchen while she plays in the living room. The fact that she is increasingly mobile helps as when she misses me or needs something, I hear the "clap, clap" of her hands on the wooden floor as she crawls towards the kitchen, or the little plastic wheels of her walker being pushed down the corridor, and she's with me again. I never leave her alone for more than a few minutes at a time. More often than not, she chooses to hang around the kitchen with me, playing with her fridge magnets or a wooden spoon, or "cleaning" the floor with the tea towels - and it wouldn't be the first time I've cooked dinner with her hanging off my leg either. Not a huge amount of fun, but sometimes it just needs to be done!
This blog is now closed. The story continues over on Flip Flops and Flying Carpets.
Thank you for reading.
Thank you for reading.