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Feel free to name a monkey after our son

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Feel free to name a monkey after our sonIf you were famous, would you be bothered if a zoo decided to name a monkey after your newborn son or daughter? Personally, I wouldn’t be bothered. In fact, I’d be kind of flattered by this sort of honour. However, not everyone seems to agree.

In the week that followed the birth of a daughter named Charlotte to the UK Royal Family’s William and Kate, a Japanese zoo was widely reported to have committed a diplomatic faux pas by naming a baby monkey Charlotte. In a public vote organised by the zoo, Charlotte was the most popular name. The zoo was forced to apologize following criticism from people who thought that the decision to call its new macaque Charlotte was not appropriate.

I may not be the sort person who purchases royal wedding commemorative crockery sets, but I really don’t see the problem with naming a monkey after a princess or a prince. After all, lots of parents playfully refer to their offspring as cheeky monkeys when they are young. Indeed, I am aware of several fellow parent bloggers who include ‘monkey’ in the name of their website. These include All Done Monkey, The Monkeys All Say Boo, You Clever Monkey, Schooling a Monkey and One Smiley Monkey.

Perhaps some would argue that deference to royalty should dictate that naming a monkey after a royal baby is not appropriate. However, I am inclined to disagree. I’d imagine it’s reasonable to assume that being born into a life of wealth and privilege does not preclude royal babies from displaying monkey-like characteristics or being branded ‘cheeky little monkeys’ by their own family and friends.

Now it may be that a Japanese zoo naming a monkey after a member of a foreign royal family is considered by some to be undiplomatic. That said, diplomacy is not always a trait displayed by members of royal families. An uncle of newly-born Princess Charlotte caused controversy ten years ago by turning up at a ‘colonials and natives’ fancy dress party wearing what was reported to be a Nazi costume. Charlotte’s great grandfather’s undiplomatic remarks have been the subject of several books and indeed a list of Ninety gaffes to mark ninety years that was drawn up by the UK newspaper The Independent.

There is another important question that needs to be asked about the topic of monkeys. What is it about monkeys that means that it’s potentially offensive to name one after a member of the UK royal family? After all, humans ‘share a common ape ancestor with chimpanzees‘ according to the Smithsonian Museum of National History. Given that some sorts of monkeys are apparently capable of using computers (see number 2 on the list), I’d love to offer one the opportunity to write a guest post on this blog sometime in the near future.

Given the fact that monkeys are often perceived to be comical and fun animals, it seems strange for it to be seen as potentially controversial to name one after a member of a royal family. Indeed, I certainly see it as no reason for going bananas.

What do you think about the Japanese’s zoo’s decision to name its newborn monkey after a newly born princess? Was it a mistake on their part or were the critics over-reacting? Please feel free to share your views in the comments section below or on the ‘Dad’s The Way I Like It’ pages on Facebook or Google+.

Remember that you can also subscribe to this blog by entering your e-mail address in the box on the right of the screen and also follow this blog via BlogLovin. There’s also now a Pinterest board for this blog as well, so please feel free to pin this post if you’ve enjoyed reading it.

I’ve added this post to the following parent blogger link-ups:

A toddler’s Christmas in Wales

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A Toddler's Christmas in Wales

As a child, I generally spent Christmas in Scotland with my parents and sometimes we went to see family in Ireland over the festive season. We also spent Christmas 1982 in California as we lived in San Jose from 1982-1983. As our son’s only 19 months old, we haven’t really got into a Christmas routine yet as last year was his first Christmas. Indeed, he was kind enough to write me a blog post about what it was like.

At the age of only 8 months old, our son was kind enough to write a blog post about his first Christmas...

At the age of only 8 months old, our son was kind enough to write a blog post about his first Christmas…

Last year, we went to the south east of England to spend Christmas with about twenty members of my wife’s family. This year, we’ve decided to do things slightly differently. We moved to a new house just over three months ago and have decided to invite my parents and my wife’s parents to spend Christmas with us here in Wales as we now have a bit more space. The local area is rural and quite hilly and I’d go as far as saying that it can almost look like Narnia when it snows.

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I’d really like there to be snow this year as our son is yet to have his first experience of walking in snow or building a snowman. That said, wet weather will be good too as I know that Santa Claus thinks that it helps his rain-deer. As you may have guessed from the last sentence, I’m quite keen on the British tradition of telling corny jokes at Christmas. In fact, I talked about this last year in a post entitled 5 things I like about Christmas in the UK.

In a lot ways, we probably don’t always have a very traditional British Christmas as my wife, son and I are vegetarian. Instead of having turkey, we often make a spicy nut roast with tomato chilli gravy. We do have the traditional roast potatoes and brussel sprouts, but I quite like to stir fry the sprouts with soy sauce, chilli and paneer (an Indian form of cheese). At work last year, my colleagues collectively decided to forego a traditional Christmas meal for our end of term evening out and instead had a fantastic Chinese buffet. Consequently, we had fortune cookies rather than Christmas crackers. As it happens, we’re going back to the same place for our pre-Christmas outing again this year.

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Our son has already been getting into the Christmas spirit and has been enjoying wearing his two Christmas jumpers. We actually let him wear them before December had started as we went to a Christmas market about ten days ago in the nearby town of Llandudno. Doing anything to mark Christmas before it’s actually December, such as putting up decorations, doesn’t really feel right but it was fun to take him out to the market.

As it happens, some of the students that I teach at university were talking a few weeks ago about how they found it irritating to see decorations up while it was still November. I had to break it gently to them that we were about to study a book whose first word was ‘Noël’. The novel in question was Azouz Begag’s Béni ou le Paradis Privé, which tells the story of boy who is born in Lyon to Algerian parents. The opening sees the boy talk in a jovial manner about his experiences of being from a Muslim family in France in the weeks before Christmas. As part of this revolves around the boy wanting his parents to get a Christmas tree, I decided to deliver the first class about the novel with a miniature Christmas tree and Father Christmas on the desk at the front of the classroom. It was still November, but I think my students let me get away with it.

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Whatever you are doing to mark Christmas this year, and even if you’re not, I’d like to wish everyone reading this a great end to 2014 and a fantastic 2015.

I’ve written this post as part of the Multicultural Kid Blogs series ‘Christmas in Different Lands’. Click on this link if you would like to read more posts by parent bloggers about Christmas around the world.

What did you think of this blog post and what did you and your family enjoy most about Christmas?  Please feel free to share your views in the comments section below or on the ‘Dad’s The Way I Like It’ pages on Facebook or Google+.

Remember that you can also subscribe to this blog by entering your e-mail address in the box on the right of the screen and also follow this blog via BlogLovin. There’s also now a Pinterest board for this blog as well, so please feel free to pin this post if you’ve enjoyed reading it.

I’ve added this post to the following parent blogger link-ups:

19 thoughts from my 19th month as a parent

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19 thoughts

It’s time for another monthly round-up about getting used to being a parent. This month, I talk about Skype, selfies and sledging…

1. Our son has been getting quite affectionate over the last month. He recently kissed the screen when saying goodbye to granny and grandad on Skype…

2. …and he’s also taken to grabbing people’s legs and saying ‘cuddles’.

3. Our son recently took his first ‘selfie’ (see below).

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4. In order to try to improve the quality of his selfies, I’ve been giving our son a few tips…

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5. ‘Monkey’ / ‘Mwnci’ has become one of the first animals that our son can say. I’m quite pleased he’s chosen one that sounds very similar in English and Welsh. He also does quite a good monkey impression.

6. Our son has been perfecting his ‘family fist pump’ technique in the last week. I was going to post a picture or video here, but the first rule of our family fist pump is that you don’t talk about our family fist pump.

7. Our son may no longer be a little baby, but we still have this balloon (see below) that one of his grannies bought for him when he was a day old.

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8. For some time, it’s been almost impossible to try to eat an orange within the sight of our son without him coming over and insisting on having at least half. Now, he seems able to sniff oranges when they’re in our ‘going out’ bag..

9. Our son used to be quite scared by the hoover but now is quite excited by it. The line ‘let’s go downstairs, we’re going to do some hoovering’ has been used to coax him towards the living room recently.

10. My telling of dad jokes has resulted in a change to my official work address…2014-10-10 18.07.32

11. Toothbrushes and spoons generally don’t look alike to most people, but our son recently tried to use his toothbrush in order to eat porridge.

12. Our son’s recently been walking round the kitchen holding up a saucepan lid to his ear and saying ‘hello’. Perhaps it’s time to explain how phones work.

13. Our son’s enthusiasm for gardening has continued recently and we’ve thankfully managed to prevent him from trying to water the chickens again.2014-10-18 11.19.32

14. Having an 18 month old son means not staying up to watch the football highlights on Saturday night’s ‘Match of the Day’ but knowing I’ll wake in time for Sunday morning repeat.

15. I have been trying to get more exercise recently. Last weekend, I went out for a cycle and chased our son round two different soft play centres. I still feel that soft play centres often do a better job of tiring out children than parents.

16. Eating with chopsticks can be challenging for a toddler, but nowhere near as challenging as trying to drink a glass of water using chopsticks…

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17. While I was writing this post, our son was walking round the living room with a pan from the kitchen. This has got me thinking: when is it OK to ask your kids to start cooking dinner at least once a week? 🙂

18. Our son had his first trip in a sledge this month. He was dragged around the living room in it by grandad and enjoyed it immensely.

19. When our son had a slight cold recently, we decided that he could still go to the play park but would have to dress up as a fisherman.

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What do you think of this post and what do you remember from your first two years as a parent? Please feel free to share your views in the comments section below or on the ‘Dad’s The Way I Like It’ pages on Facebook or Google+.

Remember that you can also subscribe to this blog by entering your e-mail address in the box on the right of the screen and also follow this blog via BlogLovin. There’s also now a Pinterest board for this blog as well, so please feel free to pin this post if you’ve enjoyed reading it.

Similar posts

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I have added this post the following parent blogger link-ups:

Will our son like curry?

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National Curry Week

This is a big question and not just because it’s currently National Curry Week here in the UK. In fact, it’s a question that I’d put it in the same category as ‘will our son like haggis?’. For some time, I have looked forward to being able to share my favourite sort of food with our son.

About a year ago, I tweeted ‘been enjoying watching our 6 month old son starting to eat solids – it’s mainly baby rice at the moment, hope we’ll soon be able to give him baby curry’. Within minutes, someone who saw my tweet decided to tweet back with a link to a recipe for vegetable and coconut curry that is suitable for babies as it’s not too spicy. As I haven’t yet made this curry for my son, the fact that it’s National Curry Week here in the UK from 13-19th October seems a good reason to put that right.

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Whilst a lot of people are wary about feeding spicy food to babies and toddlers, it seems that this can vary from one culture to another. I remember my mum telling me about a Sri Lankan friend who had little hesitation in feeding spicy dishes to her baby son. So far, our son has had a few mild curries and seems to quite like them. We’ve tried baby led weaning with him, and it’s generally worked fairly well.

The first time I remember having a curry was when I went to an Indian restaurant in St. Andrews (Scotland) with my parents when I was about ten. I loved the flavours of the spices and have been a big fan of curry ever since then. In fact, I have often planned journeys around trips to curry restaurants. From 2002 to 2004, I taught English at a university in Lille (France) and would head back to Leeds five or six times a year as I was registered for a Masters degree at the university there. I would get the Eurostar from Paris to London and make sure that I’d have enough time to have a curry at a fantastic restaurant near Euston station before getting the train up to Leeds.

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I’d go as far as saying that the number and quality of Indian restaurants and sweet shops on Drummond Street makes it one of my favourite streets in London. As a vegetarian, I love the fact that there are at least half a dozen Indian vegetarian restaurants on the same street. What is more, several of them do amazing lunch time buffets where it is possible to sample a fantastic range of starters, main courses and desserts. I have sometimes thought that their ‘eat as much as you like’ format could end up making them go bankrupt and me gain a serious amount of weight.

That said, going out for a curry has always been something that I’ve seen as a bit of a treat. We’re lucky to have a really good Indian takeaway called the Sittar in the village where we live. I heard a rumour that they’re going to set up a smaller branch in the village that offers childcare as well as tasty food. Apparently, they’re going to call it the Baby Sittar.

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I’d love to visit India one day and sample the cuisine in the land where it originates. There are doubtless various questions one can raise about the ‘authenticity’ of Indian food that is served up in countries such as the UK. In addition to the fact that a lot of what are generally called ‘Indian’ restaurants are run by Bangladeshis or Pakistanis, it may well be the case that the foods served up in some establishments are created in part to appeal to a British palate, However, this issue doesn’t really bother me. I am, after all, a Scotsman who eats vegetarian haggis rather than the traditional meat haggis and who serves this form of the national dish in burger form, in cannelloni or with couscous.

I’ve noticed that curries can often taste slightly different depending on where you are in the world. I haven’t noticed much difference between Indian food that is served in the UK and the US, but it’s not the same story in France or Spain. In France, curries that would be described as mild in the UK are often listed as medium spicy on restaurant menus. When I was in an Indian restaurant in Barcelona, I remember the waiter asking if I wanted the curry I’d ordered to be ‘medium British’ or ‘medium Spanish’.

Foods with an Indian twist form an important part of what we eat on special occasions, and massala nut roast with spicy tomato gravy is definitely one of my favourite vegetarian Christmas meals. It’s particularly good when served with Brussel sprouts that are stir fried with chilli and paneer (and Indian form of cheese). As our son grows up, I hope he’ll come to share our love of Indian food.

Do you have any particular foods that you like to eat as a family? Are there any events where you live where people celebrate a particular sort of food? Please feel free to share your views in the comments section below or on the ‘Dad’s The Way I Like It’ pages on Facebook or Google+.

Remember that you can also subscribe to this blog by entering your e-mail address in the box on the right of the screen and also follow this blog via BlogLovin. There’s also now a Pinterest board for this blog as well, so please feel free to pin this post if you’ve enjoyed reading it.

I’ve added this post to the following parenting blog link-ups:

Moving house with a toddler

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Moving house

Due to moving house, I’ve taken a bit of a break from blogging recently. Now that we’ve been in our new place for just over two weeks, we’re feeling settled in our new abode even if we haven’t quite finished the unpacking yet. Our son seems to be enjoying having a bit more space inside and out in which to run around and appears to be fascinated by our garden shed.

In years to come, I’m not sure what – if anything – our son’s going to remember of the house that we recently moved out of. It’ll always  be a special place for my wife and me as it’s where we got engaged and also the place we took our son home to after he left hospital. It may well be that our son will only really become familiar with our old house through photos that we show him in coming years rather than memories of what it was like.

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We’ve spent a lot of the last few weeks surrounded by boxes. First of all, we spent a lot of time packing things up at our house and then we had to unpack them all at our new house. Our son seemed to like playing in the boxes and even played a small role in helping with the packing. Preparing for the move was made a lot easier thanks to several of our friends looking after our son or taking him out while we got on with tidying up our old house.

Think we've packed everything now, but where's out son got to?
Think we’ve packed everything, but where’s our son gone?

Our son can be quite helpful around the house at times and often likes nothing more than to walk around with a little brush and sweep the floor. As the picture below shows, he’s also been kind enough to help me tidy my office as well recently.

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One of the best things about being in a new house is having more space for our son to get his toys out. At our last place, the living room space could feel quite small when he had his ball pool out. Now, we can keep the ball pool out in our living room and not worry about it getting in the way. That said, he has recently been spending a bit of time walking around our new living room with a measuring tape as if he has some grand plans to make a few changes.

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It’s also great to have larger garden where our son is able to run around and have fun in the open air. He’s recently had a lot of fun feeding corn to our two chickens Dorothy and Myfanwy. Until recently, he’d normally drop the corn just outside the chicken run but just this weekend he’s actually managed to start throwing the corn into the run. Our two chickens are grateful for this improved standard of catering provision.

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For the first few nights after we moved, our son seemed to sleep less well than normal. This involved a triple whammy of not going to bed as early as normal, waking up during the night and getting up really early. Part of this might have been due to teething or having recently caught chicken pox (…not sure whether Dorothy or Myfanwy is to blame). He’s now sleeping a lot more and seems to be quite happy despite having chicken pox. We’ve got our fingers crossed that everything will be back to normal soon as we get used to life in our new house.

Have you ever moved house with your kids? Do you remember moving house when you were a child? Please feel free to share your views in the comments section below or on the ‘Dad’s The Way I Like It’ pages on Facebook or Google+.

Remember that you can also subscribe to this blog by entering your e-mail address in the box on the right of the screen and also follow this blog via BlogLovin. There’s also now a Pinterest board for this blog as well, so please feel free to pin this post if you’ve enjoyed reading it.

I’ve added this post to the following parent blogger link-ups where you can read lots of other posts about parenting:

First family trip to Scotland

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First family trip to Scotland

We visited my native Scotland earlier this summer on our first trip with our then 15 month old son. Just as I had wondered how he would react to his first taste of vegetarian haggis back in January, I was eager to see how he’d respond to visiting the land where I grew up. In fact, he started letting out some little happy noises just after we told him that we’d crossed the border into Scotland.

Our son may well have a very different relation to Scotland to the one that I had. I was born in Scotland and lived there until I left to study at Leeds University when I was eighteen. Our son was born here in Wales last year and this may mean that his relationship to Scotland ends up being similar to my own connection with Ireland, the land where both my parents were born. By virtue of my wife being from England, our son would be eligible to play football for Wales, Scotland, England, Northern Ireland or the Republic of Ireland.

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I had been slightly worried about our son making a bit of a mess at my parents’ house as it is a lot tidier and neater than our own house, in part due to the less frequent presence of food-throwing toddlers. He did have a go at re-arranging most of the contents of the spice shelf in one of the kitchen cupboards and ‘re-organizing’ a bookshelf (see 16 thoughts from my 16th month as a parent and Like father, like son), but thankfully my parents didn’t seem to mind. Indeed, he showed quite a commitment to tidiness by spending quite a bit of time playing with a mop as well as a dustpan and brush.

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It was great fun going on a family trips to places that I’d been to regularly as a child, even when it was only the local play park. I particularly enjoyed our trip to Craigtoun Country Park near St. Andrews, somewhere that had been a real favourite of mine when I was primary school age. I’d been sad to see that it was threatened with closure within the last few years, but thankfully it was saved by a community group that largely took over the running of it.

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The park’s attractions include a boating lake, crazy golf, trampolines, a play park, train rides and lots of space for having picnics and running around. I had worried that it would not live up to my expectations given how much I’d enjoyed it as a child but found that the play park had grown a lot bigger and that the track for the train ride was much longer than it had been. The train rides had been one of my favourite parts of the park as a kid and apparently I once insisted on going on something like eight or nine train rides in a row. Perhaps for this reason, the park now has a different ticketing system which involves buying tickets for a set number of rides (…although there is an unlimited day pass option).

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Our on wasn’t all that bothered about the train ride and almost nodded off to sleep during the circuit of the park. However, he did seem to really enjoy riding on some tricycles in an area where there was a perhaps misplaced sign telling visitors ‘no backflips or somersaults to be attempted’ and managed to restrain his gymnastic inclinations. Back home at my parents’ house, there were plenty of other things to enjoy (…such as being able to relax and being cooked for!). It was also great to see our son playing with some of my favourite toys from my toddler days. These included a set of plastic stacking cups that my parents have now kept for over thirty years.

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It was also great to go on trips with not just my wife and son, but also my parents. There was something special about three generations of our family going places together. These included Kinshaldy Beach, which is on the coast of North East Fife. Although it was a bit blustery, we all managed to have a paddle and build some sandcastles (…as well as take turns trying to prevent our son from eating sand).

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As we’ll soon be moving house, our trip to Scotland has been our only real trip away this summer. This trip home involved visiting many familiar places and these places became all the more special again as they took me back to my own childhood and I loved seeing our son enjoy them too. I’m not sure if he’ll remember his first trip to Scotland in years to come, so I might just have to show him this blog post!

Do you remember taking your kid(s) to places that you visited as a child? Did the places live up to expectations and what did your kid(s) think? Please feel free to share your views in the comments section below or on the ‘Dad’s The Way I Like It’ pages on Facebook or Google+.

Remember that you can also subscribe to this blog by entering your e-mail address in the box on the right of the screen and also follow this blog via BlogLovin. There’s also now a Pinterest board for this blog as well, so please feel free to pin this post if you’ve enjoyed reading it.

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16 thoughts from my 16th month as a parent

I’ve added this post to the following parent blogger link-ups:

16 thoughts from my 16th month as a parent

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16 thoughts

Here are some highlights from my last month of parenthood, which include thoughts on sport, camping and reading…

 

1. Our son seems to like trying to put all sorts of different things into his bath at the moment. I recently heard my wife saying to him “no, you cannot put my shoes in the bath”.

2. Our son wasn’t very interested in the recent football World Cup, but it was an excuse to get in some more training so as he’s ready to play in the 2034 tournament.

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3. I had a proud dad moment last week. I did a monkey impression and our son tried to copy.

4. ‘Mum, why’s there a cloud in the sink?’

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5. Clothes pegs in the watering can are a clear sign that our son has been ‘helping out in the garden’.

6. He’s a bit better at helping out in the kitchen and has already got quite attached to our dustpan and brush…

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7. …and he’s also tried to re-arrange granny and granddad’s spice rack .

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8. Our son really likes trips to the beach, but he’s not quite learned the lesson that you’re not supposed to try to eat sand yet.

9. I think that our son may be trying to drop a few hints that he thinks it’s time to go on holiday…

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10. I had an anecdote about a boomerang that I was going to share in this blog post but I can’t remember it. Maybe it will come back to me.

11. On a recent camping trip, our son decided that jumping in puddles was nowhere near as much fun as sitting in puddles.

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12. Our son recently tried to feed some wool to a neigbour’s cat. The cat’s fine although I think it might have mittens soon.

13. At the age of fifteen months, our son has decided that it’s time to make the step up from picture books to proper novels.

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14. When we were about to go out for a walk recently, our son walked up to me with both my shoes. I wonder how long this junior butler service will last 🙂

15. Our son’s got some great clothes, but I’m not sure if any of them quite match this hand-knitted outfit that I wore back in the very early 1980s.

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16. If coming up with more and more thoughts about parenting each month gets a bit challenging, maybe I could try throwing in a few dad jokes from time to time and see if anyone notices.

 

What do you think of this post and what do you remember from your first year and a bit as a parent? Please feel free to share your views in the comments section below or on the ‘Dad’s The Way I Like It’ pages on Facebook or Google+.

Remember that you can also subscribe to this blog by entering your e-mail address in the box on the right of the screen and also follow this blog via BlogLovin. There’s also now a Pinterest board for this blog as well, so please feel free to pin this post if you’ve enjoyed reading it.

 

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I’ve added this post to the following parent blogger link-ups, check them out to see a range of posts by fellow parent bloggers:

Camping with a toddler

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Camping with a toddler

Last weekend, we went camping with our fifteen month old son. It was our third camping trip, but this time it was a bit different. We were one of about fifty families who were at the 2014 Sling Dads Family Camp at Sherratts Wood in Staffordshire. Sling Dads are a group who promote baby wearing and its benefits for dads. On their website, they talked about their reasons for planning a camp back in February.

On this blog, I’ve talked about baby wearing a few times. Last October, I blogged about going to a village called Sling to mark International Babywearing Week and also attitudes to baby wearing from around the world. In February of this year, I wrote about how taking our son to the supermarket in a sling had become a father and son bonding activity.

The previous time we’d stayed in a tent with our son, he was just under four months old. With him now being older and more mobile, I’d been a bit worried about how we’d manage to keep an eye on him and manage to put up our tent. Getting it properly assembled took us about an hour and a half the first time we stayed in it a few years ago, but we’ve got this time down to about 10-15 minutes now. Nevertheless, assembling it all can sometimes be a stressful experience that helps to explain why camping is sometimes referred to as an ‘in tents experience’. Thankfully our son happily played with a spare tent pole as we put up the tent.

Our son was son making friends with a few other toddlers of a similar age as he wandered around the site. As he’s at the babbling rather than talking stage, watching these interactions can be quite fun. Sometimes he just stands and stares at his fellow toddlers. After getting to know a few fellow campers, he was soon enjoying an outside bath.

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After falling asleep in a sling by the campfire, he managed to sleep soundly back in the tent despite a thunderstorm and several flashes of lightning. In fact, this is more than can be said for mum and dad! He was also kind enough to allow us what now counts as a Saturday morning lie-in by not wanting to get up until 7.30am.

Some of the activities on the Saturday morning were re-arranged due to heavy rain, but this didn’t really affect our son as he decided to have a two hour nap. After this, he accompanied us to a room where we were able to try a range of slings. He particularly liked the fact that his was taking place in a room meant he could do one of his current favourite things: climb up some stairs. We are gradually trying to introduce him to some other fun activities that don’t involve staircases but are taking it step-by-step.

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Our son tries to do an impression of a doll.

The rain that had fallen on Friday and Saturday ended up bringing some positives as it provided plenty of puddles for our son to splash about in on a path through the woods on the edge of the camp. In fact, he decided to splash about using both his feet and hands. To cap it all, he decided to sit down in a few puddles as well. Thankfully, we’d decided to put him in a waterproof suit so we just stood there giggling away rather than trying to discourage him from having some messy fun.

Our son enjoyed chasing some bubbles around and then had a quick game of football before dinner. After dinner, he was even kind enough to help me with the washing up before dinner (see picture below). After this, he seemed too excited to sleep so we sat with him around the campfire again and got talking to some of the other families. After a little walk in the sling, he finally nodded off. Popping him in the sling is the way that I normally use to get him to go to sleep in the evening when my wife’s out and breastfeeding him to sleep isn’t an option. I always love seeing and feeling him gradually drift off to sleep.

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On Sunday morning, our son was again kind enough to let us stay in bed until 7.30am. We then had a cooked breakfast in the fantastic food tent before it was time for a group photograph of all the happy campers. After packing the tent up, there was more time for exploring the campsite and jumping in puddles before it was time to head back home to North Wales. The weekend had clearly been an exciting one for our son as he slept for almost all of the two hour journey home.

Have you been camping with your kids? What do you remember of going camping when you were a child? Please feel free to share your views in the comments section below or on the ‘Dad’s The Way I Like It’ pages on Facebook or Google+.

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Like father, like son

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Like father, like son

I was recently looking through some pictures of myself as a baby and was struck by some of the similar things that I did as a baby and that our son has done in his first fifteen months. Here are a few examples…

I’ve talked about slings in some posts on this blog, partly because we live near a village called Sling and partly because going round the supermarket with my son in a sling has become an unexpected father and son bonding activity. As it happens, I was a baby who was carried around in a baby carrier by my dad over thirty years ago…

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Another thing that I seem to have copied from my dad is wearing matching father and son stripey t-shirts. The one on the left was taken in Scotland in the early 1980s and the one on the right in Wales last year…

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Our son also seems to be following in my footsteps by developing an early interest in reading, or at least pulling books off bookshelves…

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…and he seems also to have developed my love of sand and sandpits.

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As I mentioned in a recent post, our son has tried to water our chickens while walking around our back garden with a watering can. Judging by the picture below on the left, it looks like my parents took steps to make sure I didn’t get too close to chickens whether or not I was carrying a watering can!

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Finally, it seems like my son and I also share a love of swings. Here’s a photo of baby, daddy and granny in a play park…

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What did you think of this blog post? Do your kids do things that you used to like doing when you were younger? Please feel free to share your views in the comments section below or on the ‘Dad’s The Way I Like It’ pages on Facebook or Google+.

Remember that you can also subscribe to this blog by entering your e-mail address in the box on the right of the screen and also follow this blog via BlogLovin. There’s also now a Pinterest board for this blog as well, so please feel free to pin this post if you’ve enjoyed reading it.

 

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15 thoughts from my 15th month as a parent

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15th month as a parent

This month of parenthood has involved sheep, streamers and shoes…

1. We seem to always forget to bring our son’s bucket and spade with us when we go on an outing to the beach. As if to make a point about this, he has spent a lot of one day recently wandering around our front room with his plastic spade.

2. Our son enjoys helping out in the garden. We have had to teach him that he’s supposed to water the plants and not the chickens.

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3, Laundry pile jenga is our son’s new favourite game. It involves walking up to a pile of laundry on a chair, tugging at it and seeing if he can knock it all over before mummy or daddy notice what he’s doing.

4. Another one of his favourite games is playing ‘peek-a-boo’ with daddy’s t-shirts.

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5. We were really impressed when our son recently started responding to the question ‘where’s your nose?’ by touching his nose. However, he recently also responded to the question ‘where’s dad?’ by touching his nose.

6. Rather than staying inside and watching the World Cup on television, we have been taking our son out and about to exciting local events. Here is a sheep shearing competition at Sioe Dyffryn Ogwen, a local agricultural show. We didn’t see the conclusion of the event as we needed to change his nappy (what us UK folk call diapers!). The same thing happened in the last few minutes of the World Cup match between Argentina and Brazil, meaning that I missed Lionel Messi’s winning goal.

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7. We recently bought our son a box full of blocks with letters on them at a jumble sale. I’m currently wondering if there are enough to spell the name of the famous local village of Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllllantysiliogogogoch.

8. Here’s the answer…

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9. Our son’s still not sleeping through the night on a regular basis yet but he was kind enough not to get up early on either Saturday or Sunday of a recent weekend. He woke up at 9.30am on the Saturday and 10am on the Sunday.

10. I bought some streamers that I was going to use to decorate our house for our son’s birthday a few months back. I forgot to actually put the streamers up but our son demonstrated his dexterity by managing to find one of the packets a few weeks ago before opening it and having lots of fun!

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11. Animals and food have been two things that we’ve tried to teach our son about. One weekend, we had to stop our sun trying to eat cat biscuits and then an hour or two later try to prevent our son from having part his flapjack eaten by chickens.

12. Baby led weaning can get messy, especially when a 14 month old insists that he wants to hold the spoon himself while having porridge. Indeed, things can get even messier when he decides to grab a clean baby grow and rubs porridge onto it as well…

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13. Our son has recently added the words ‘bath’ and ‘splash’ to his vocabulary. I still have ‘dad’ noted down as his first word though.

14. Our son enjoyed getting his first ever pair of shoes recently, mainly because he was able to pull lots of pairs of the shelves. In fact, he had more fun that the last time he went to a soft play centre.

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15. My wife and I have finally got our son’s hint about trying not to forget his bucket and spade when we go to the beach. We got him a new bucket and spade at the beach recently so as he has one set to keep in the car and another to keep in his sandpit in our back garden.

 

What do you think of this post and what do you remember from your first year and a bit as a parent? Please feel free to share your views in the comments section below or on the ‘Dad’s The Way I Like It’ pages on Facebook or Google+.

Remember that you can also subscribe to this blog by entering your e-mail address in the box on the right of the screen and also follow this blog via BlogLovin. There’s also now a Pinterest board for this blog as well, so please feel free to pin this post if you’ve enjoyed reading it.

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