Wednesday, January 30, 2013

January Round-Up.

As soon as I have more than 3 minutes I really am going to make the blog private, but for now I have a few minutes to upload some pictures from January. We have some big changes afoot, which will hopefully make for an easier home-life... well, at least it should make it less crazed. Whilst January was full of sickness and a lot of stress, it was also full of lovely moments with the boys. 

Monday, January 28, 2013


I've been meaning to write a blog post for quite sometime... Firstly, I shall thank/commend/tip my hat to Al for writing about 467 blog posts for everyone of mine - and even a New Year promise to do one a week has not been met - but February could be different! Our January has not really gone to plan with illnesses a plenty, and Al sadly returning to work - we curse daily America's successive Congresses/Senate's/Corporate Governments for not doing what is the right thing on maternity leave - whilst just 200 miles to our north, our progressive Canadian neighbours have 50 weeks of paid leave...and accessible healthcare for all! I'd also like to (belatedly), thank all our friends and family that have helped us over the last few years - since they have been a couple of years that have been challenging at times - veering between pleasure (Charlies safe arrival and Rafi growing from a toddler into a boy), and pain of losses. From cards, presents, meals, visits, Raf sleeping over, and everything in between - it was all appreciated and made these times much easier for us. Whilst 2013 hasn't been great so far due to the prevalence of illness - we are looking forward to a great year of renewal - Rafi turning four, Charlie turning 1 and walking, and doing the odd road race now with two passengers!! Getting chips (fries!) in Old Orchard Beach is also high up on the list, after a run, swim or bike of course... I will leave you with my Christmas card from Al, Rafi & Charlie - joy indeed...Have a happy & healthy 2013 everyone!

Sunday, January 27, 2013


Life has been a little bit crazed, mostly because we've been dealing with ongoing illness. Last week I was totally out with the flu, and then Charlie came down with something last Thursday. We took him to the Dr's on Friday and they offered him the antiviral, Tamiflu, but we decided to see how he was. Well, on Saturday night when the poor baby was just screaming I was beginning to regret not giving Charlie the medication. That said, he's been slowly getting better, though his sleeping has been terrible. For the past week Charlie has been up practically for most of each night. I have to admit that I am pretty depleted and slightly crazed from the lack of sleep.

This morning Raf woke up and had a cuddle with Charlie and declared that he'd like to have THREE brothers. Yikes. I asked Raf what he'd call them and he told me he'd like three Charlie's. After this past few weeks I think I'd be signing up for a stint in the funny farm if we had more kiddos.

But Charlie remains his cheerful self. He's always smiling and squealing and Raf adores him. Raf had a very trying week last week, though. Lots of screaming, 'Noooooooooo', and throwing odd things across the room (very new behaviour.. hopefully short lived). We're not sure what's been going on but everything has been a battle... This week has been a trillion times better. He responds very well to an empathetic response from us, and a good cuddle when he's having a moment can turn things around very well, but his frustration level was very low last week and we're still a bit perplexed about it. This weekend was lovely, though, and he was a happy camper and his usual cooperative self.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

3 Months Old!

I will hopefully get around to making the blog private very soon... ! Unfortunately the entire house has been sick, and last Saturday I was hit with a horrible flu. I was basically bed bound for 4 straight days and it's only today that I feel somewhat human. Needless to say I am horribly behind in every way.

But today is Charlie's 3 month birthday! What a lovely, special boy he is.  Rafi loves his little brother. This was this morning as Raf waited for Charlie to wake up.  

I came home at lunch time to feed Charlie and saw him almost roll over! He is very close, and he's already very. very strong. He loves to grab hold of thing, including hair, and yank it!

A bit last minute as it was a long day.. and week... but we do like to make a cake to mark quarter birthdays when the boys are young. Nana thought we were crackers, though Rafi really enjoyed it.

So lucky to have little Poppet and my little boy wonder.

Thursday, January 10, 2013


Hi Readers,

I think we're going to make the blog private in a few days. I'd thought about doing it a while ago but know that lots of our friends and family lurk without commenting so didn't want to accidentally exclude people, so if you'd like an invite to continue to read then please email me... If you don't have my proper contact details email

Alex, Rich, Rafi, and Charlie.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Only Wednesday!

Although it's only Wednesday, I must say that it's been a very, very long week. On Monday I headed into the office full of panic that I'm already so far behind. Before I got there, though, there was a rather comic moment which involved me running down the long, snowy driveway, dragging our Christmas tree behind me as I waved like a lunatic for the truck picking up the trees for the one-time collection to stop. Instead they drove right past me, though they must have taken pity on me as one of the trucks came back and piled on the tree manually. Oh, and then our internet was disconnected because I've been carrying the bill around with me in my car meaning to post it for the past, well, 4 weeks. 

When I left for work, though, it did seem that Raf was a little out of sorts. I checked in to see how Charlie was doing and while Rich and my mum assured me that C was just fine (he was not taking a bottle, mind you) I could hear the screaming in the background, so back home I went. This was the welcoming committee... I'd only been gone a few hours :)

Later that evening it was becoming more obvious that something was awry. Charlie was developing new cold symptoms and Raf was really pretty hyper, not knowing what to do with himself. That night Rafi burned up a horrible, horrible fever, which kept me up most of the night... and then Charlie nursed for a good part of the night, I think because he had a sore throat. Unfortunately yesterday was also the beginning of a two day work retreat for me. We'd planned for Rich to have the day off so that he could bring C to me to feed.. and that he did. Charlie perhaps drank 1/2-1 ounce that morning but waited to come to me to be properly fed. I'm not sure what we'd have done without Rich being able to come up, especially since Raf was just getting worse. As soon as I got home Raf vomited all over me, just as I was on the phone trying to organize an adjunct for a course (yes, classes begin next week), getting back to emails, and taking on more work than I can possibly cope with right now.

And things sort of went downhill from there. Sad, sick, disorientated Rafi vomiting everywhere, a too-hungry Charlie eating like he'd never eaten before, sick covered couch, piles of laundry, and 3 adults coming down with a similar illness to Raf's. And work coming out of my ears.

This morning Raf seemed a bit better but not well enough for school so Rich had to take off another day, which was also a relief as I was so worried that C wouldn't eat anything. En route to the retreat (most people stayed the night) mum called to say that one of the dogs was missing.. super way to begin the day. Thankfully Sammy returned!

Raf also seems to be on the mend, so fingers crossed he can go to school tomorrow as I'm already hopelessly behind at work.  I'm already counting down the days until June.

Somewhat miraculously Charlie is even fairly cheerful when he is poorly... and I think we're all very grateful for that.

Here's to a better second half of the week. Rafi did just say, 'mummy, you're cute', and that goes a long way in making this week better.

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Winter Fun!

Neither Rich nor I are fans of the winter but we realize that to remain sane we really have to get the boys outside to expend all that energy. It's also such a difficult time of year with the post holiday slump.. Indeed Raf is also feeling a little low as Christmas has ended and today he was feeling very sad about the Christmas tree going. Since it was the 12th day of Christmas today, we took down the tree this morning, and since then Raf has been telling us how much he misses his tree. Poor little thing. 

However, we have been having quite a bit of winter fun. Last week Raf and I went sledding with some friends on some tubes. Raf had a blast. We then visited with Raf's friends' Addie and Calla and sled down a small slope in their garden. The next day Rich and Raf went sledding on a very popularly used slope near to our house. They had a blast... especially Rich :)

While Raf has been very physical in the snow, Charlie has been working on lots of new things, too... tummy time, playing, and even mini-pushups.

And also, as ever, he's working on his smiling...

Yesterday we returned for another session of gym class. Raf loves Coach Dan, and now it's even better now that his friend Rowan is going to class. Both boys had tons of fun. Coach Dan, however, told me that Rafi is ready to move up to the big boys and girls group, which doesn't necessitate a parent to be there with them... and I have to admit that I feel a bit sad about that, but we are going to up a group next week.

Coach Dan is REALLY funny.

I had taken Charlie with me to gym class, and we went around with Raf as Charlie was happily snoozing in his Moby. I think he must have been inspired because when we returned home Charlie was really working hard on his pushups.

Such a happy baby.

This morning we enjoyed a lazy hour in bed (if 6am can be described as lazy), and the boys enjoyed breakfast in bed.

We eventually corralled the boys and managed to get them into the car so we could head to LL Bean to check out some snowshoes for Raf. Given that we can't change the weather here in Maine, we might as well embrace it! And we do love to snowshoe... We picked up some really super snowshoes and poles for Raf at Bean and this afternoon we had a really fun time snowshoeing around the garden. Raf did really, really well. I thought it was going to be a bit of a nightmare but he did so well and got the hang of it very quickly. It's a bit difficult not to step on your other foot when you snowshoe, and although he fell as few times, we trekked up and down the yard until his little legs were clearly getting a bit too tired. Charlie also came snowshoeing but managed to sleep through the entire walk.