Holiday Movies

Last year I read a fair amount of holiday books around this time of year, but with the Imp around reading is not really something I’m capable of at the moment. So what I’m doing this year is watching a bunch of holiday movies – with more or less attention actually paid. Admittedly, a lot of times they’re just kind of on in the background as the Imp and I get on with our daily life, but still – it’s holiday movies!

So, what have I seen so far, and what did I think? Some of these may contain spoilers, do be warned!

Four Christmases

Reese Witherspoon and Vince Vaughn star in this movie as a couple who have no interest in getting married or having children, mainly (apparently) because they both come from broken homes and their families are kind of messed up. A part of me kind of wanted the no marriage/no children thing to be a valid choice, but this is a typical movie where naturally – everyone has to eventually want to be married and make babies. 

The story itself is that their usual holiday getaway (that they lie to their family about, usually saying they’re off on some charity thing etc.) is canceled and their families see them in TV as a reporter interviews them about the flights all being grounded. Now they’re suddenly having to visit all of their parents, who are divorced, in one day – hence four Christmases.

Admittedly I missed a lot of this movie. I caught the start and the very last bit, so I didn’t necessarily get to see how they went from “no children”, to suddenly having a baby. The first family they visited was Vince Vaughn’s dad and brothers, and it wasn’t something I enjoyed. So that’s possibly why I missed a lot (a really good movie I’d pause when leaving the room). Personally, for me, this holiday movie can be a miss.

This accurately describes my feelings about the movie.

Elf

I can’t help it. Even after all these years, I still love the movie Elf with Will Ferrell. It’s one of my holiday favourites and I probably watch it ever year. It’s silly, and shouldn’t be taken too seriously, and if you can suspend belief and just have fun – Elf will deliver just that.

Buddy is a human who accidentally ended up in the North Pole as a baby, and as such was raised by Santa’s elves. He finds out that his real, human father lives in New York, and sets off to find him. However, since he’s lived in the North Pole his entire life, and spent most of it as an elf – he’s not entirely prepared for the human world.

Just watch it. That’s my score.

Buddy’s completely normal reaction to hearing Santa’s coming.

The Holiday

I’ve seen this one before, but it was quite some time ago. It’s a bit of a feel-good movie with what I like to call 1,5 romances. Maybe it’s meant to be two, but the second one unfolds so slowly, and is much more focused on the relationship between Kate Winslet and the old gentleman friend, rather than her romantic second lead. The first romance is much more of a proper romance.

The setting of the movie for those who have lived under a rock and never seen/heard of it, is that Kate Winslet and Cameron Diaz have both just had their hearts broken and need a break. They end up on a website for home trading, and they switch homes for two weeks. Winslet going to live in Diaz’s massive house in L.A., and Diaz in Winslet’s little English cottage. Meet-cute when Winslet’s brother Jude Law comes knocking one evening while drunk, apparently not realising that his sister has gone. (And sorry, I can’t remember any character names.)

It’s a sweet movie, and fairly decent as far as holiday movies go, and even okay for a romance. A couple of things bothered me, but nothing overly major. Oh, one thing about the ending… spoiler alert!

Diaz and Law want to be together, but the major thing is that she lives and works in L.A. and he is UK bound. She eventually decides to stay a bit longer in the UK to celebrate New Year’s with his family – but that doesn’t actually solve the issue in any way. So it’s not the happily ever after one may have hoped for.

I’d probably invite a drunk Jude Law too.

That’ll have to do for now, since my writing time is limited. I will write about some other movies I’ve seen another day (like the Netflix specials!), as I’m sure everyone is dying to know….

The Sleep Saga

I feel like this blog has shifted focus a bit lately, but I suppose that is because my life has sort of shifted focus since the Imp came into the world. It’s difficult to find the time to blog, but I still would like to, and I’m hoping that the Imp will eventually settle into a better bedtime routine that allows me some time in the evenings.

At the moment the Imp tends to go to bed for the night no earlier than 10 pm most nights. Which means that I have to make a choice between getting more sleep or having a couple of hours to myself. Admittedly I often choose the latter, which leaves me very tired the next morning (since the Imp often wakes up around 1 am, and then again any time between 4-6 am). By then I’m so tired after spending three hours trying to get the Imp to sleep that I just sort of crash on the couch with some Netflix.

The Imp just really seems to struggle to settle down in the evenings. She will be tired, I’ll put her to bed and she’ll have a feed, you can see that she’s about to drift off – she turns over on her tummy (current favourite sleeping position), then seems to remember that she knows how to get up on all four – and bad time is ruined. After that it’s impossible to get her to lie back down; she will flip herself around in the bed, get up on all fours, climb all over the place, stand up against anything she can… You name it.

Only way I’ve been able to get her to settle in the evenings is to put her in the sling and rock her to sleep. It’s not great, since it’s not really something I want her to get used to, but the alternative is hours of rummaging around in bed until she hits exhaustion and just screams/cries with tiredness. She’ll whinge a bit when first put in the sling too, it’s how she keeps herself awake sometimes. You’ll know when she’s tired when we’re out for a walk, cause she’ll suddenly start crying in an attempt to stay awake! Yup, that’s my imp.

Anyway, I shan’t bore you anymore with our sleep issues (and I didn’t even get into the multiple wake-ups every evening when she finally has gone to sleep!), it’s just nice to get to have a whinge about it now and then. I do see some improvements in all honesty, and I hope that they will continue to improve. It’s extra frustrating in a way because she actually used to sleep amazingly for maybe a month or two, then it suddenly stopped and we’ve not been able to get back to it.

One day we’ll get there.

The Imp’s first time in a swing the other day.

Instagram Roundup (Catch-up)

I would like to get back to my monthly Instagram roundup posts, but it’s been a while so I thought I’d do a catch-up post of the ones I missed. Obviously that’s a lot of photos, so I’m not doing all, but I’ve chosen some that I’d like to share. To make it a little bit less spammy, I’ve added them as a gallery. It’s up to and including September this year. I will include October’s photos when I do a November post in early December.

Unfortunately I haven’t figured out how to make the gallery put the photos in the order I want, so they’re somewhat out of order.

Baby Potter

Photo spam incoming!

For my baby shower I received a Harry Potter onesie for The Imp, and some time ago I finally got around to using it (and she had grown into it). Since I’m a bit behind on my blogging in general, I never shared the photos – and they’re too cute not to! So, here’s Baby Potter!

The Imp is totally ready for her letter from Hogwarts. She has her own owl and everything!

The full outfit, including wizard’s hat!

It also includes a cape!

Waiting for her letter from Hogwarts!

“I’m ready to go!”

What are owls for if not eating?

The Imp was not impressed when I told her that one doesn’t get to start Hogwarts until 11 years old.

Free time (or lack thereof)

Suddenly even more time has passed. I swear I want to get back to blogging (and writing), but at the moment my time is severely limited. Not only have I been blessed with a baby that doesn’t particularly enjoy playing by herself (at all), she also doesn’t seem to think that sleep is anything she needs to be bothered with.

Now, I don’t want anyone to get the wrong idea here. I love my girl to bits. But I do miss having some time to myself. Any time to myself. Right now having a shower is a luxury.

For a few weeks it was amazing. She went to bed at a reasonable time, and although she may wake up a handful of times throughout the evening, most nights she’d settle back down if I went in to her for a few minutes. Not so for the last month and a bit…

The current trend is that she will go to sleep as usual around 7-8 pm, but then she will only sleep for maybe half an hour before waking back up, and refusing to settle back down. For hours. She will most commonly fall asleep for the night between 10 and midnight. Leaving little to no time for me to do anything for myself. Being an introvert, this is rough.

My sleep-refusing monster.

She also used to sleep through from around midnight to 6, which was lovely. Now she’s quite unsettled and will sort of half-wake and cry several times every night. Fortunately those night time moments she’s usually quite easily settled, but it does leave my sleep quite interrupted.

You might think that I should take the opportunity during the days to sleep when she has a nap. And I’d agree with you. Except nap time is another one of those things that apparently she doesn’t feel that she needs. She will usually have a couple of naps every day. If I’m lucky one of them will last an hour. There’s only a tiny bit of jealousy and bitterness when people in my mummy-group talk about their babies napping for 2-3 hours during the day.

For example; today my daughter had three naps. They were 30 minutes, 10 minutes and 5 minutes.

She’s teething, so I’m hoping that’s part of the reason it’s been so rough lately (though over a month now?), and that hopefully it will turn around soon. My hope is that I can get my evenings back again so that I can start blogging a bit more regularly. You may have to put up with me whining writing about mum-life though. Sorry!

Who wouldn’t forgive this face though? <3

Change of Pace

This is just a quick little note to anyone who maybe hasn’t removed this blog from their feedreaders or unsubscribed from the e-mails – the WoW blog won’t be coming back, and since this is my oldest domain (and I want to keep it in use) this will turn into my personal blog.

So unless you like reading about life with a baby, and boring posts about my life in general – I suggest you remove this blog from your feedreader now!

I will keep the old WoW posts for posterity in their own category, since I think it’d be a shame to delete them.

Thanks for all the good times back in the day when I was still blogging actively about World of Warcraft!

I’m still here (sort of)

I realise that it’s been a long time since I wrote, and I don’t know how active I’ll be for the foreseeable future since The Imp arrived on March 2nd and is wanting a lot of attention. I’m basically a human buffet at the moment, and The Imp doesn’t approve of lying on her own, so there’s very little time when I can actually do something.

Things have been pretty crazy in general. After the last time I wrote we went for an ultrasound, only to find out that the baby wasn’t growing properly. They were worried about her, and talked about bringing her out early. At the time I was at 32 weeks, and having a premature baby seemed scary. Fortunately, the specialist decided that we were safe to keep going, but we went in for weekly checks, and eventually every other day.

When we hit 37 weeks it was decided that she was better off outside of the womb, since she was growing much too slowly – and I was induced. The Imp was born at 37+1 on the 2nd March, weighing a whopping 2060 grams (4,5 lbs).

Tiny human in the hospital.

We had to stay in the hospital for the first week of her life due to her low birth weight, and the fact that she didn’t have a sucking reflex the first few days of her life. She was tube fed, while we practiced breastfeeding. It took us a week, but by the end of it she had gained enough weight and was eating well enough that we were allowed home.

She’s now nearing three months old, and she’s grown quite a bit. At last weigh in she was 4200 grams (9 lbs 4 oz), so she’s almost doubled her weight.

I’m loving being a mum, and I love my little one – but free time is not something I have an abundance of at the moment. Hopefully as we settle into more routines I might find some spare moments when I can write and do other things, but for now I’m just caring for this tiny human.

The Imp napping.

Whinging

Since I got pregnant my CFS (chronic fatigue) seems to have gone into over drive. I have absolutely no energy, and all I do is work and sleep. I’ve barely spent time by the PC since a couple of months into the pregnancy, and I’m getting nothing done in regards to anything. This includes house chores, writing and everything else in life.

I talked to the doctor about it who agreed that I’m exhausted, but there’s nothing they can do about it. He offered to write a recommendation to have me switch from working nights to days, but I honestly don’t think that would help. I’d have to work more days per week to make up the hours, and it’s quite physical during the day. The other option, as he said, was to stop working. Which, sure, great – except I can’t afford it.

Still, I only have another four weeks to go now until I go on maternity leave, so I just have to make it until then.

I also found out recently that I have gestational diabetes, so no enjoying all my little pregnancy cravings. So far, I seem to be able to manage it with diet alone though, and I hope that will continue. It’s not easy to eat regularly and exercise when all you want to do is sleep, so I do worry a lot about it.

Anyway, that was me having a bit of a whinge. I think we all need it now and then.

2017 – A Look Back

With a new year having started, let’s have a look at what I was up to last year.

In February I left my job as a Teaching Assistant in a special needs school to work nights as a Support Worker for a former student of mine. Not sure if it was the best choice in hindsight, but I needed a change and this gave me one.

In March I had a miscarriage, and it was about as devastating as you might think. A few weeks after I ended up in the hospital for three days due to complications (an infection) from the miscarriage, and I was quite unhappy for some time.

In April I went back to Sweden for a holiday, celebrating Easter with my family. It was a lovely trip as always, but they never seem quite long enough.

In May we adopted our cat since I seemed to be suffering from empty nest-syndrome and needed a baby in the house. He was such an adorable little ball of fluff. We love him to bits, but in all honesty he’s grown up to be a bit of a prick.

In June the boyfriend and I went on our first holiday together that wasn’t either going to his family in England or my family in Sweden. We went to Spain, and spent a lovely week alone in a house with a private pool. It was amazing. We were also visited by my sister and her partner and little girl, which was a lot of fun.

In July my dad visited with his wife and my baby brother (who was approaching 8 at the time). We visited Swanage and mainly just hung out together and had a good time. That concluded the family visits for the year though, and I’m hoping to get some new visits this year again.

In August I spent two weeks back home in Sweden with my family, which was great. The weather wasn’t as awesome as I might have hoped, but it was still warm enough to enjoy some summer evenings out.

In October we had our bedroom re-painted, and it turned out really well!

In November we finally passed the first 20 weeks of our second pregnancy and could breathe a little easier after what had happened earlier in the year. We announced it on Facebook and it was suddenly official! I also visited Sweden again for a week since I realised I soon wouldn’t be allowed to fly, and it might be a while before I can go again.

What was your 2017 like?

Instagram Roundup (Catch up)

This is pretty much a photo spam post since I’m catching up on all the Instagram photos that I haven’t had a roundup for in ages. Fortunately for all of us, I don’t post a huge amount to Instagram.

I went out for afternoon tea. Always yummy!

Mac enjoys the maternity pillow as much as I do (it’s under the covers).

Mac surveys his kingdom.

Our announcement photo.

Mac wants to be a hairdresser. I’m not quite as keen.

We went to dinner at our favourite restaurant.

Bailey had a hair cut.

One of the out take photos for our announcement. Notice the cat photo bombing?

In November/early December I went home to Sweden and was treated to a mini version of Swedish Christmas dinner.

Tried to make the living room look like it was Christmas ready.

I got all dressed up for the work Christmas do.

Bailey was showing off his new jumper for Christmas.

I dressed up as a Christmas pudding for Christmas. Because, well I kind of look like one right now.