Saturday, 22 January 2011

Not ready for alligators yet

As those of you who had their houses dismantled over Christmas will know, Nathaniel is rather fond of making obstacle courses across the living room. He likes tunnels, bridges, chairs to climb over and cushions to bounce on.

Today we made a fine offering with a bridge.

Nathaniel was enjoying it until I, thinking I'd add some excitement to the occasion, picked up the Spaniel and the Beagle, placed them on the floor, and told Nathaniel that they were fierce alligators, waiting to eat up anything that fell into their swamp. Nathaniel gave me a slightly perplexed look. So I elaborated. "They are very hungry alligators, and will gobble up anything that falls off the bridge".

I realised too late that this wasn't the perplexed look, it was the "I am totally unsure about this look".

"Would you like to do the obstacle course?"


In an over enthusiastic voice: "Ready, steady, go!"

Silence. And no movemnet.

"Shall I take the alligators away?"


I picked up the unwanted creatures, and Nathaniel hurredly took them from me (they had obviously morphed back into something that could be safely touched), and placed them face down on the table. They couldn't cause any trouble from there.

And then we were free to have lots of obstacle fun.

Thursday, 20 January 2011

New books

Its all very well just getting presents at Christmas and on birthdays, but sometimes it is very exciting to get an unexpected present. While in a joke book shop (the sort that sell mainly very similar cookery books with the recipes disguised to look like new ideas), Aunt Nimmy stumbled on something rather wonderful.

Last year, she happened across Tremendous Tractors, a book about tractors and the things that they do. Now I wasn't the biggest fan initially - I don't really like the style of the pictures, and I'm not a great one for anthropomorphism of animals (the tractors are driven by a mouse, a rabbit and a freakishly overweight green bird). But the whole book is in rhyme, and it is good, convincing and reliable rhythmic rhyme. And the content is superb! We've learnt all about the harrow and the different parts of a seed drill, and what in order all the bits of equipment are used. Its a great little book.

So there was much excitement when Aunt Nimmy produced a series of these books housed in a cardboard truck. We've not been dissapointed - Nathaniel has learnt useful words like articulated lorry, and understands how points work on railway tracks. And we haven't even opened Super Submarines or Roaring Rockets!

This morning, Nathaniel climbed onto the sofa with a warm towel from the radiator and his book truck and anounced that he was reading a bedtime story. He then sat, totally engrossed, for about 15 minutes, reading 5 of the books, his little lips silently whispering something.

Then he put the books away, declared that bedtime story was over and that he was now going to sleep.


Wednesday, 12 January 2011

A big improvement

Its been a tedious week. Post-viral Nathaniel involves a great deal of inexplicable crying. Our only clues to the sources are garbled words muffled by sobs; "Mummy not move trains", "Not want a nap", "Not Tuesday. Is Wednesday!". Its all been rather tiresome.

But then today, when he came home from nursery, suddenly everything was better. Nathaniel marched to the fridge, removed a box of eggs and declared "Want eggs for supper please". On closer questioning he revealed that they should be scrambled, and he got out a pan and tried his hardest to crack the eggs. He helped me stir them on the cooker and then proceeded to sit an eat the whole lot as well as most of a slice of toast ("cut in triangles please"), before politely requesting that I go and scramble another egg.

He's like a new child!

Nathaniel with his scrambled eggs

He declined to smile, favouring the serious look!

Saturday, 8 January 2011


Nathaniel has greeted 2011 by getting something flu-like.

Fortunately, after two nights of not much sleep and a day of being wrapped up on the sofa and being cuddled by Ian, he is feeling "better today".

Hasn't stopped him taking a three hour (and counting) nap today!