Monday, June 30, 2008

Holiday fun

Well we just did our first holiday with both girls. We've been away with them before, but that was a mad fly-drive south for a funeral. This was a little road trip to Tauranga to a nice little holiday park with hot pools.
This is what we bought the big gas-guzzling van for! We strapped the babies in, loaded the back up with portacot, buggy, bed linen, suitcases of clothes and nappies, food, drink, spare clothes, raincoats, toys, more toys books and a change of undies for me and off we went.
I didn't take a lot of pictures, mainly because I was either in the water, or carrying a child in one hand and a bag of nappies in the other, but I did take a few. Find me on Facebook if you want a look.
We had a great week and I think the mineral water in the pools really helped Kaitereo's eczema as it seems to be healing up a lot. She still has the dry patches, but the red-raw rash is gone.

We spent the first 3 nights at Omokoroa Holiday park in a cute little unit with 2 bedrooms and so many beds Mapera couldn't decide where she wanted to sleep. She ended up on the bottom bunk just like at home!! She wanted to go to bed straight away and spent a happy half hour playing on each of the beds and putting her baby to bed as well.
Kaitereo really loved the hot pools, and we were in them every morning and evening. She was laughing and splashing like a loon. Mapera is getting a lot more confident in the water now, and we got her a set of water wings so she could swim without our help. When she starts lessons again next term, she'll be on her own in the pool with just the instructor! No more help from Mummy...I'm really proud but also very nervous.
I've decided to try and teach Kaitereo myself now, so she can have lessons while Mapera is having hers. I'll probably get Kaitereo into classes when she reaches the stage of needing to swim without my help.

I've wandered off the subject of our holiday, so back we go. On our last day we decided to stay another night, but the place we were in was booked, so we headed off to Rotorua to see what was there. We found another Thermal Holiday Park with a cool cabin (bunk beds in the corridor for Mapera!) and 4 hot pools. We let Mapera have loads of rubbish to eat and drink, but I think I have finally weaned her off the bottle. We forgot to take hers with us so I suggested we just give her warm milk in a cup before bed, and she loved it!
I've decided to keep it up at home, but she realised her "blue cup" (bottle) was in the cupboard when we got back, so tonight we had a minor tantrum when I told her she was having a cup.

We bathed in the pools, went to a cool animal park, ate out ALL the time and just relaxed. Mapera behaved like an angel, and so despite the mountains of luggage we seemed to need, I think we could cope with another holiday like that!
Both the girls have got straight back into normal routine, and I think it's because we pretty much kept it the same over the holiday - no TV, meal times and sleep times not too different and plenty of fresh air. Poor Kaitereo has the cough that we've all had, and I thought she had avoided. I can't give her any cough mixture as she's under 2 and she is not sleeping well, poor mite.


Well I wrote that a few days ago and have only now got round to posting it 3 days after we got home! Kaitereo has been given a once-over by the doctor, and the cough is nothing to worry about - I was concerned that it had gone into her chest as an infection. She seems to be recovering too, sleeping better definitely.

Mapera got some new books on holiday, and we have a new favourite: The Gruffalo. I looked for it as I'd heard good things about it and I was not disappointed. I do think I have heard the basic story somewhere before though, maybe an Aesops fable or something? Can anyone out there enlighten me??

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Pinetarsol bath

This is what we have to bathe our poor itchy baby in:

Friday, June 13, 2008


I've been treating Kaitereo's rash as a nappy rash and teething rash for months, but it has been spreading in little patches onto areas where she is not under a nappy or dribbling. I took her to the doctors to rule out skin problems and maybe get some useful advice and it turns out she has eczema.
Poor little mite, she's been suffering for ages! I asked the doctor if there were any ways to treat it that didn't involve steroid cream, and he said no.
So...I got the prescription: steroid cream twice a day for 2 weeks, aqueous cream every time I change or bathe her and pinetarsol for the bath.

I REAAALLLLYY don't want to use steroid creams on her unless nothing else works, so I'm going to try cutting out wheat from her diet for 2 weeks instead, along with moisturising her skin and avoiding soaps. She's keeping the teething necklace on, as I think it is helping with her teething and it won't do any harm.

I've got the steroid cream so if it gets worse or doesn't improve I will use it. UNLESS someone out there has a tried and tested remedy they can recommend. *hopeful face*

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

My Granny is gone

My Granny, who was always fit as a flea and full of life, collapsed on Sunday morning and was rushed to hospital.
She was in intensive care but they could do nothing for her. Her blood pressure dropped and she slipped away with her 2 daughters and her husband by her bedside.

I have just spent the last 24 hours agonising about whether or not I should go. I'd have to take the baby with me as she is still breastfeeding, but she doesn't have a passport and my returning residence visa is out of date.
Part of me - the emotional part - just wants to jump on a plane with the baby and go and be with my family, but the rational part of me is saying it's crazy to scramble all the paperwork together and drag myself across the world. My Grandpa told me not to come, he was worried about me and bub making the trip.

So, I have decided to stay here and get my papers organised properly, then go back early next year when one of my cousins is getting married. I am consoling myself with the thoughts that I managed to get a text to Mum when she was with Granny, telling Gran that I loved her; that Gran would really like me to be at my cousin's wedding and that she got so meet her first great-grandchild at least.

I'm sending this to my Dad for him to read out for me at the funeral:

I remember my Granny

I remember my Granny's hands, tough from work and gardening
I remember my Mum threatening me "Granny will smack you with her rough hands"
and Granny growling

I remember my Granny's smile and her chuckle, warm and genuine and full of love.
I remember the secret thrill of seeing her without her teeth in.

I remember her kitchen in the early morning, cutting crosses in sprouts ready for the roast,
Eating the odd one, cabbagey and hot.

I remember visiting my Granny to present her first great-grandchild.
My Granny crawling around on the floor with my baby,
3 generations apart and no age gap.

I remember my Granny and her sister, together at last after too long.
Arm in arm, tripping down the prom, giggling like schoolgirls.

I remember my Granny and Grandpa after some difficult times.
Quietly holding hands and strolling in the sunshine, together again.

I remember looking for pretty broaches for my Granny,
so she could wear my gifts without her allergy flaring up.

I remember my Granny's writing,
clear and rounded and echoed in my Mum's

I remember my Granny's dressing table,
Hairspray, moisturiser, hairbrush, mirror.

I remember being at home, trying to get up before my Granny in the morning.
I never did it.

Seeing my Granny in my kitchen in her rollers and dressing gown,
meant it was Christmas.

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Awww my babies are growing up

Mapera has been telling us interesting stories. I am constantly amazing how she absorbs information from the world around her, and turns it into something new.
Today she told Daddy that she was in the naughty corner on the bus, because she was "smoking a fag". I laughed so hard I nearly cried!! We've told her that Nana is naughty for smoking; she's been for a ride on a bus; the naughty corner is a severe punishment; but I would swear blind I've never said "fag" to her! Where do they get it from?

Kaitereo finally got her 2 bottom teeth, they popped through within hours of each other. She had 1 in the morning when she got up and number 2 appeared just after lunch. Big relief all round.

She's also learned to wave: