Saturday, February 2, 2019

Groundhog Day

So today is Groundhog Day, and unlike in the film both Daniel and I will be hoping that we don't have to repeat the day again tomorrow as although it was memorable, it was for all the wrong reasons!

This morning we had to go to town to buy Matthew new football boots as he has just joined a club, and needs boots to play on the astroturf. Daniel firstly refused to come along, and it took ages to get him dressed.  When we finally got to Sports Direct, Daniel refused to get out of the car.  I was quite keen to have a look in the store myself, so tried to persuade him out, but he was having none of it.  In the end, Louise took Matthew into the store, and they took quite a while for Matthew to try on and buy the right size boots - all the while Daniel and I were sitting in the car.

Daniel eventually came round when we took him to Dunelm Mill - I didn't buy him a cake as he hadn't behaved, but to be fair, he didn't complain and just sat there looking sad.  Louise ended up feeling sorry for him and bought him a caramel cake.

On the way home, we saw the remains of the snow on top of the mountains in the distance and Louise suggested that we could go 'snow chasing' - I thought this would be a great idea, and give Daniel a chance to experience some proper sledging.  So, after lunch, I took Daniel off in the car for a snow hunt. We had an incident even before we left, when Daniel slipped and fell down part of the stairs, though he claimed he was OK.  In the car, I took a wrong turning and it took much longer than I'd expected to reach the mountains, but when we finally arrived it looked like it would be great fun, and there were a lot of other cars parked along the road while families had gone to sledge and play in the snow.

The snow was much deeper than I'd expected, well over a foot in places, which made walking difficult on the uneven mountain grassland, especially for Daniel.  Pulling him along in the sledge uphill was hard work so he did walk and the snow fell into his boots.   He enjoyed the first twenty minutes, and had fun sledging down the hill the first time.  On his second go, though, he started crying at the bottom of the hill and complained his feet were too cold.

He struggled to walk back, so I pulled him in the sledge, but half way back when I was going to suggest he emptied the snow from his boots to help his feet, we realised he'd lost one of his wellies!  The snow was so deep, it was nowhere to be found.  We decided not to retrace our steps as Daniel was already crying, but it took another ten minutes to get back to the car.  On finally arriving home, with soaking cold wet trousers and socks, we struggled to warm up Daniel's feet and he ended up with a blanket and woolly socks.  By the time he got to bed, his feet were warm and he was back to his usual self, but he was complaining of a sore ankle.

Daniel, before losing his welly
Other news, and we measured Daniel this morning and he's 122cm, around 7cm shorter than Matthew was at the same age, but still above average.  We're still marking his height on the 'snug as a bug' height chart we originally bought for Matthew, though we've now taken it down when we're not measuring him, and have put up the dinosaur picture he had for Christmas and coloured in.

Daniel's colourful dinosaur

Yesterday evening we also found the camera Daniel had for Christmas in 2017, which he only used on Christmas Day itself and hasn't been seen since!  It had been sitting behind the cupboard in the lounge the whole time.

Friday, February 1, 2019

Drawing and snow

Daniel has taken a liking to drawing over the last couple of days - last night I suggested that he could become an artist when he is older, as he'd drawn a nice picture, and he then decided that he wanted to draw instead of having a bed time story.  I then found him a book that Matthew received when he was younger, which has step-by-step instructions showing how to draw animals, trees, houses and other objects.  Matthew had drawn a few pictures in the book (which Daniel told me were "rubbish"!) but hasn't used it for a while.

Daniel drew quite a few pictures last night by following the instructions, which he showed me this morning, and continued drawing this evening while Matthew played on the X-Box.  His pictures are quite good and he has done well following the diagrams.




The Drawing Book

We also had a centimetre or two of snow last night, the first snow this winter and probably a similar amount to the time I took Daniel sledging.  Daniel was disappointed that he didn't have a day off school, and most of the snow had melted by the time we came home this evening, so we weren't able to go sledging this time.

Sunday, January 13, 2019

Dewi Dragon

We have had a surprise guest at home this weekend: Daniel came home from school on Friday with his class toy, Dewi Dragon, who is due to return tomorrow.  We have had to take Dewi with us throughout the weekend and capture his adventures in his school photograph album. 

Yesterday, he came with us to have a haircut and then went through the car wash (in the car, obviously!).  This morning Dewi came with us to Costa, though Daniel didn't want to give him any of his toastie or chocolate cake - he refused to give me the chocolate Flake on top of his cake, too!

We stayed home in the afternoons, so Daniel had his photo taken playing with Dewi next to his Hot Wheels garage, with his amusement park Lego set, and with the guinea pigs.

Friday, January 11, 2019

Vegetable man

Daniel is learning about food in school this term, and has come home today with this interesting piece of artwork...

He was upset coming out of his swimming lesson on Wednesday.  He told me that he'd been told to wear armbands in the big pool, even though he complained to his teacher that he thinks he doesn't need them.  Apparently another boy, Oliver, who is in his class in school, then teased him because he couldn't swim all the way to the green barrier.

Daniel told me that his name is  James Family Huw.  I did query the use of 'Family' but Daniel assures me that this is his name...

Thursday, December 27, 2018

Christmas 2018

Daniel has continued to suffer with his stomach pains in the run up to Christmas - Louise took him to the out of hours doctor one evening last week, and he ended up going to A&E, though they couldn't find much wrong with him.  He was still in intermittent pain after this which seemed to get worse on Saturday and Sunday, with pain starting around mid-day and lasting into the night, so he spent much of the time bent over on his chair, crying.  I ended up taking him to the doctor on Christmas Eve, though his appointment was in the morning when he was at his best and so the doctor didn't see him in a lot of pain.  The doctor thought it was probably constipation, muscular pain, or even excitement over Christmas, and prescribed Daniel some medicine for constipation.  He did admit that there wasn't much else that he could do, and that if the pain continues Daniel will need referring to a specialist. 

Daniel went downhill after the doctor's visit, and despite insisting that he was well enough to go to lunch with us in Costa, he refused any toasties, and spent most of the time lying down on his chair (though he did manage a chocolate cake).  He spent the afternoon lying down, and was in too much pain to watch the Polar Express with us, preferring to go to bed. 

Louise decided to spend the night in his room, but thankfully Daniel's pain subsided into the night.  Louise didn't have a peaceful night, though, as Daniel awoke at 2am and then proceeded to talk intermittently until dawn, being too excited to sleep.  Despite the lack of sleep, Daniel generally behaved well on Christmas Day, and seemed to be happy with his gifts (for the first time, we didn't have him saying "I didn't want this!").  Fortunately, although he didn't seem quite himself and refused most of his Christmas dinner at Grandma's, his pain didn't return and he was able to enjoy the day.

Of his gifts, Daniel enjoyed playing with his melting snowman - a moulding putty toy, which 'melts' gradually after being made.  He was also delighted to receive a guitar, but hasn't had much use out of it as one of the strings snapped just after I tuned it up.  He also received a couple of Lego kits, a jet car from Grandma and Grandad, and a rally car from Gramps, which he's really enjoyed building, and done impressively well putting them together needing only a little help from me with putting the stickers on.  He put the jet car together on Christmas evening, and the rally car yesterday.

With Daniel's pain being better, we were treated to a longer sleep on Christmas night, but had an early wake up call on Boxing Day when Daniel got up at 6am for a poo, and then flooded the bathroom when trying to flush the toilet after blocking it up with too much paper!  Gramps came over for Boxing Day dinner, and Daniel again refused most of his food, getting down early and leaving most of his turkey, vegetables and even sausages.  Daniel enjoyed playing bagatelle in the afternoon, but wasn't quite old enough to join in with our Christmas quiz, even though he shouted out some of the correct answers!

This year, Iceland have introduced Christmas tree flavoured crisps in their festive range, which Daniel has taken a liking to.  He even ate some when he was ill on Christmas Eve.  He'd probably better make the most of them, as they might not be available next year given some of the reviews (one of my work colleagues thought they tasted like air freshener)!

Christmas Tree Crisps

Daniel opening one of his gifts - a remote control car

Daniel plays with the nativity set at Grandma's house

Daniel with one of his new Lego toys

Daniel's completed Lego set

Daniel showing off at Grandma's house

Friday, December 21, 2018

100% Poo

On his last day of school this year, Daniel received a certificate today to congratulate him on his 100% attendance record.  It's not too clear in the photo below, but Daniel has written "poo" in tiny letters next to the 100%...

Sunday, December 16, 2018

Christmas fun and carols

Yesterday morning we took Daniel and Matthew to a 'Magical Christmas' event in Pembrey Country Park.  Unfortunately the weather was horrible - cold, windy and very wet - and the event was held in tents without heating, but this didn't seem to stop the boys having a good time.  It was evidently geared towards younger children, and Matthew looked like the eldest there, though he still seemed to enjoy it too.  

During the event, the boys went in to four different areas - starting with a kitchen, where they decorated a gingerbread man each (which they then got to eat - but only after being told they had to give them to Santa as a joke!), and followed by a workshop where they had to help two elves to fix the lights on Santa's sleigh.  After this, they made their own Christmas decorations, which are now on our tree; Daniel put big eyes on his!  They then sat down with another elf who tucked them in blankets and read them a story.  To finish, they entered a hut (thankfully warm) where they got to meet the big man himself - Father Christmas - who gave them a present each, and told them that he eats mince pies for breakfast, lunch and dinner!  Despite the weather, both Daniel and Matthew joined in with the activities enthusiastically, and Daniel has enjoyed painting the wooden helicopter toy he had as a present from Santa.

Daniel's decoration
This evening, Daniel had his first experience of a church service when we took him to Grandad's carols by candlelight service.  The candles are now battery powered, so not as authentic to look at, but safer than a few years ago when Matthew's coat caught fire!  Daniel was rather fidgety through the service but didn't make too much noise.  He was rather bemused during the prayers and when we all bent down and closed our eyes, he asked "why is everyone doing that?".  He also struggled with the carols as he's not used to singing them in English, and is still a bit young to read the words quickly enough to sing along.  He did seemed to enjoy himself, though, and was glad to have a mince pie and biscuit afterwards.

Daniel has brought home a 2019 calendar from school which shows himself dressed as a policeman - we'll obviously have to all behave next year!

Daniel's calendar