We are right into puzzles at the moment. Hugo just loves them.
It is amazing to see him soaking in his world at the moment. He becomes frustrated when something wont fit, or stack or go exactly the way he wants.
But we show him again and he tries so hard.
Lily is great with him and teaches him in her own way what works and what doesn't.
It has been shockingly cold here lately so we have been doing lots of inside playing.
You know when you need 84 hours in the day just to get by and then it is suprising toyou that there are only 24?
Well this is one of those times.
We are people who normally have a project on. Of course! How boring life would be with no projects...
But I think this time we are stretching it.
Some things have to be put on the backburner. That's why there have been not many posts.
We have two poppets who have been/ still are atrocious sleepers. Lily did not sleep through the night until just before she turned four.
It was tough.
Honestly, some days I really didn't know if we'd make it and it was only when we started to sleep a bit at night that we realised how sleep-deprived we were.
She would sleep maybe 4 hours, broken, each night.
Hugo is not that bad, as Lily did have a zillion factors to contribute to that which stemmed from her birth, but he is still average at best.
Getting up to him 6 times a night is a great night. Still. At. almost. two.
But we figure we are well conditioned now and when we do have those dreamt about eight hours straight one day the world will not know what hit it.
We will be energise and recharged.
So we chucked all the parenting books very early on, agreed that each child was different and went with the flow. I wish we'd done it earlier (like when Lily was born) but as new parents we though everyone else knew best. Hmmmm....
We have a family bed.
It has morphed into a bed as large as we can fit, which is a kingsized and a king single together, and we all fit.
That day will be nice too though.
As a mum of young children everywhere I look or go at this time of year I encounter someone talking about the toy sales. Generally the conversations mention Christmas and Birthdays as well.
For the past two years I have tried to make a conscious effort not to subscribe to the mass produced, battery operated, licensed merchandising glut that contributes to the landfill of our world.
I have researched and debated and imagined and tried from all of that to fill our home with beautiful natural playthings that promote open-ended learning for our poppets.
Other people have other soapboxes they jump onto, but this is one of mine.
At this stage of Lily and Hugo's development we are moving onwards to the next stage of toys and play. Hugo is bored by his baby toys and looking to be challenged. Lily loves to create and this is illustrated via her creative works in art/playdoh/cooking and also her play.
If her play is too hemmed in by toys that only have a single function she either becomes frustrated or the toy remains on the shelf.
As I said, it's tricky.
So as I have been slowly culling the current shelves and making room before the mini poppet turns two this has been on my mind.
And what else to buy? What will take us all to the next level, be stimulating for both children and grow with us as we learn at home.
It also has to look and feel lovely.
We often have children over to play and it is just amazing what they gravitate to. I understand not all families have the same outlook as us and that's fine. Whatever works for everyone!
ALL of our friends choose wood. Every. Time.
Especially the handmade wooden toys.
So, watching our children play each and every day I feel that less is more in the world of toys.
That tactile sensation is really important.
Visual stimulation needs to be soft and inviting.
Noise at a minimum so as we can create our own through music/voice/body percussion/conversation
It's really cool then, at this time of year, that I can not contribute to the glut of plastic, we can walk past the battery aisle in the supermark, have fun each day and love looking at our playroom set up without broken pieces. I feel happy.
As we are here everyday, playing at home everyday it is important to have enough but not too many things to clutter our world.
I like the idea that as we grow, so does our interaction with the familliar things that surround us.
And it's actually not that expensive. It blows me out looking in the toy catalogues that items cost what they do.
I buy mostly online and often from Germany. Even with shipping, as ridiculous as it is, it's waaaaay cheaper.
Anyway, that is what's on my mind at the moment as my baby chooses which cake he thinks he might like for his second birthday. (we choose a different one everyday and so does Lily, LOL)
Lily: Mummy I have a baby in my tummy
(runs out with a teddy stuffed up her dress)
L: Look at my baby
(rubs her belly with teddy legs sticking out)
Me: Wow what a great big tummy you have
L: Yes that's my baby
(runs away into the playroom, scruntches over and then runs back waving then teddy at me)
L: Mum, look the baby hatched out of my tummy
Me: It hatched out?
L: Yep it hatched out of my tummy
Can you tell we have been learning about animals and how they are born lately?
What a classic. I did go on and explain that people don't actually hatch out, but she was off onto the next thing.
Love us xxxxxxx
1. Hugo can climb. On everything. Everywhere.
2. The littlest poppet communicates very well with words and speaks as his main form of communication
3. His favourite fruits are blueberries and strawberries
4. He loves Playschool
5. He can sing Baa baa black sheep, Twinkle Little star among others and loves to do the actions and then clap and cheer himself for being so clever
6. Hugo loves playdoh and building clocks
7. Outside he rides his bike (bike-ee), rides in his car, loves to swing and dig in the dirt
8. His favourite colour, if asked, is pink
9. He enjoys putting everyone togther in his mind and needs to know who everyone is and who they "belong" to
10. He loves to dress up and dance with his sister
11. Hugo has begun to realise that he can get a reaction from Lily if he takes something and runs away with it
12. My baby gives the hugest most amazing hugs ever
13. He reallt truly lives life with a passion that amazes me every. single. day.
1. Lily dances almost everywhere
2. Her favourite fruits are mangoes and kiwi fruit
3. Favourite colours are pink and purple
4. Pasting and painting are her "best" indoor activities
5. Scootering, carrying Dumpling (the cat) and making food stuffs out of sand/water/dirt/grass/flowers/rocks/weeds etc are her fave outdoor play
6. When she creates art it is to generally hang in a gallery or as a gift for someone
7. She can put her own buckle shoes on by herself
8. She likes to try and do most things by herself now
9. Hugo is her best friend and they have a dance and song they sing together about being best friends which is just gorgeous
10. Lily loves to create landscapes/seascapes/farmscapes out of lego or "stuff" and play quite elaborate games within these using animal and people toys to act out their daily lives.
11. She has to take a bag everywhere, filled to the brim/overflowing with special items