When Mammy's Away The Mice Will Play!
They say all good things must come to an end. Last week saw my wife go back to work after extended maternity leave. She was a stay at home mum for 14 months in total. This was made up of maternity leave itself, extended unpaid maternity leave, parental leave and accumulated holiday days. We were very lucky that she could spend so much time with Baby Clara in these early days of her life. To soften the blow of Barbara's return to work, we decided on an impromptu family holiday to Spain, which I wrote about in my last blog post.
I'm currently on summer holidays from work as a teacher so the past two weeks has been a complete role reversal. Mammy has gone back to work while I stay at home minding Clara, watching t.v. all day on the couch....NOT!
I didn’t tell my wife this, but I was a bit apprehensive in the beginning about having Clara all day, every day. Dressing her myself (apparently outfits have to match), making sure she was well fed and generally just keeping her alive until Mammy came home! But so far things have been great. And touch wood….no visits to A&E! The plan is for Clara to attend creche when I go back to work at the end of August.
Although I have thoroughly enjoyed our first two weeks of this role reversal, to say it's been busy would be an understatement! Doing laundry and housework has been mildly challenging when you have a toddler constantly clinging onto your legs!
Gardening or more specifically, mowing the lawn seems to be a new pastime of hers. "Start 'em young", as they say. Clara made sure that I didn't miss any patches and she appeared to really enjoy herself.
She’s very close to walking by herself but she keeps pulling herself up on me, the kitchen chairs or anything within her reach, including the oven door handle! You can’t take your eyes off her for a second.
As tempting as it is to plonk Clara in front of the TV for an hour or so while I clean, prepare meals, or empty the dishwasher etc, my wife and I have decided to try to keep her away from TVs and ipads etc. for as long as possible. It’s our personal choice and she’ll have enough screen time when she gets older, no doubt.
Clara and I are well into our little routine at this stage and each day I try to plan some activity which gets us out of the house, whether it’s raining or not. Last week we visited Portmarnock Beach with Granny and she had a dip in her paddling pool when the weather was fine.
We also made trips to the Zoo, the local playground and then the shopping centre when it was raining. This week, due to inclement weather, we went swimming (indoor pool obviously) followed by a trip to Ikea.
I find it easier to plan her meals for the week ahead well in advance as it prevents us from aimlessly wandering around the supermarket wondering what to buy. I have it down to a tee in that today's dinner leftovers become tomorrow's lunch. That way I get away with only cooking one meal a day!
We had a wonderful “Daddy-Daughter Disco” this afternoon. I took a little video to send to Mammy while she was in work. Probably better to only share a still of the video here and not the clip itself. I think it should be a bi-weekly event at least!
Clara had great craic as the pair of us danced around the living room to Ed Sheeran’s “Galway Girl”, making total eejits of ourselves! I know, I know.....I can't dance! I even did the pointy finger thing.....#Morto!
Last Friday was our 5th wedding anniversary. My lovely wife deserves a medal for putting up with me for this long! Barbara bought me a pretty cool mini bar disguised as a petrol can! I love it!
Sure where else could I proudly display this wonderful manly gift other than in a man cave? I guess this means that she’s finally giving me the go ahead to build my own man cave! She's sound like that, my wife. That's why I married her!
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