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21 thoughts from my 21st month as a parent

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21 thoughts Food, football and France. Read about these and more in my latest monthly collection of thoughts about being a parent…

1. Our son has got increasingly polite and sociable recently. Only last week, he helped to put out some rubbish and then said ‘bye bye wheelie bin, see you later!’.

2. The best thing about borrowing CDs of kids’ songs from the library to play in the car is that it’s usually time to return them just when they start getting irritating.

3. I think our son has inherited my dress sense. Here we are wearing matching outfits:

2015-01-10 10.22.27 4. Within the last month, I’ve had a very proud moment as our son said ‘pêl-droed’ (football) for the first time.

5. Our son is still learning to play football, which probably explains why I won 15-0 in a recent game in our back garden. He is improving though, it was 28-0 to me the previous week.

6. Talking of football, one of my favourite things about being a dad is that it’s now a lot more acceptable to play football in the living room than it used to be.

7. Our son can make a bit of a mess at times, but is also very interested in using our hoover. IMG_20150120_173334862 8. It’s sometimes hard to know when our son’s saying ‘mamma’ and when he’s saying ‘banana’. I hope he doesn’t end up sending a Mother’s Day card to a piece of fruit.

9. However, our son has managed to recently say both ‘granny’ and ‘grandad’ on Skype.

10. Our son has been introduced to some elementary human biology in one of the books he’s been reading recently (see below). IMG_20150126_194318016 11. Our son is getting very enthusiastic about helping out with our two chickens. We’ll need to stop taking him out too early in the morning as he often ends up walking back across the garden towards the house shouting ‘look, eggs!’.

12. He is getting a bit more aware of noise though. When he comes back to bed after getting up during the night, he often shouts ‘QUIET’ just after coming back into the bedroom.

13. Not so long ago, I was somewhat disappointed that our son hadn’t really experienced playing in proper snow that I decided to make him a snowman out of play dough.

IMG_20150111_131152161 14. Thankfully, we did get some proper snow not long after I made the play dough snowman (…maybe there’s a link?).

IMG_20150202_074804849 15. As someone who teaches students French for a living, I was pleased to hear our son recently say his first French word. it was ‘voila’.

16. As our son is showing an interest in France at the moment, I’ve been telling him about how Marvin Gaye used to keep a sheep a vineyard he owned in the south of France. It’s quite well known that he’d herd it through the grapevine.

17. Our son may not be two yet, but he’s already decided that it’s time he has his own house (see below).

IMG_20150119_214152745 18. Our son recently told me off for lining up all his toy animals in order of size. Apparently it’s because he doesn’t like me critter sizing.

19. I’m glad to see our son showing an interest in healthy eating. When I got home from work recently he was taking this to a new level by trying to feed grapes to his toy giraffe.

20. Due to his interest in animals such as giraffes, we recently decided to make our bathroom look a bit like a jungle (see below). IMG_20150204_081419011 21. Coming up with over 20 thoughts about parenting per month is getting quite challenging. I’m going to keep this feature going until our son turns two and will then be replacing it with a new format. Watch this space!

What do you think of this post and what do you remember from your first year and a half 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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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:

10 thoughts from my 10th month as a parent

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2013-12-20 11.10.29

Our son expresses surprise at seeing himself described as a somewhat messy eater on my blog


With our son now entering his 10th month, he has now been out of the womb for longer than he was inside the womb. Apparently babies can hear from inside the womb and I believe that one once wrote a book about what they could see from inside the womb, and that their novel was later made into a film. Anyone remember ‘Womb with a View’? 

I’ve learned a lot about parenting over the last few months, and this post is the latest in a series of monthly posts that I’ve been writing about memorable little moments, anecdotes and reflections. I’ve included links to previous posts in this series at the end. Anyway, here are ten thoughts from my 10th month as a parent:

1. Our son used to chew a plastic duck in the bath, which caused us a few worries as vegetarian parents. We were re-assured when he started chewing a face cloth in the bath rather than the duck, but recently he’s been using a raw carrot as a toy and throwing it round the front room. Vegetables = something to eat, plastic duck = something to play with. Obviously, we need to keep working on this one.

2. I explained the difference between ‘less’ and ‘fewer’ to our baby son when ‘less’ was misused by the presenter of BBC’s television rural affairs series Countryfile. Our son looked back and smiled. I must point out to him that some of his baby grows feature missing or misplaced apostrophes.

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3. I recently parked in parent & baby space for 1st time since becoming a dad. Wasn’t much closer to the shop than normal but felt like a big moment. I parked in another parent & baby space last weekend and feel like I am really a proper parent now.

4. Our baby son has discovered that he get all his toys out of his toy box more quickly if he just tips the box upside down. He still needs to work on his tidying up technique though.

5. I have started to use Twitter a bit more since staring this dad blog. When my wife was singing The Wheels on the Bus to our son, she including the line ‘the daddies on the  bus go “tweet, tweet, tweet”‘. I hope that our son will grow up to realise that birds also go ‘tweet, tweet, tweet’.

It's a triple whammy! Bowl on the floor, food on the floor, spoon on the floor...

It’s a triple whammy! Bowl on the floor, food on the floor, spoon on the floor…

6. In a previous post, I mentioned that our son sometimes shows off his raspberry blowing skills at 4am. It’s getting worse – he’s now demonstrating these abilities during mealtimes when his mouth is full. We’ll have to start wearing overalls when we feed him before long as it can sometimes feel like we’re being paintballed at close range.

7. Whenever our son drops a cream cheese rice cake, it seems to always end up cream cheese side down on the floor.  When cats fall, they’re supposed to always land on their feet. I wonder if this would still happen if a cat was covered with cream cheese. Please note that I have not carried out any empirical research into this matter and have no intention of doing so.

8. Our son’s getting closer and closer to managing to crawl at the moment but still doing quite a bit of wobbling and falling over like a little drunk person.

Mmmm... Yummy haggis!

Mmmm… Yummy haggis!

9. I had a proud Scottish Dad moment on Burns Night this year. Our, 9 month old son had his first taste of vegetarian haggis and really liked it! I’m particularly proud of this as I made the vegetarian haggis from from scratch for the first time ever this year. Have a look at this post if you want to hear more about this.

10. Dear son, as you’re into your tenth month you’ll have to remember that from now on you need to do a double figure number of funny, cute or thought-provoking things per month. If you don’t, writing this monthly post is going to get really difficult. Please try to remember this. Thanks

What do you think of this post and what do you remember from your first year 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

Being a dad – celebrating the little things

6 things I’ve learned in 6 months as a parent

7 thoughts from my 7th month as a parent

8 thoughts from my 8th month as a parent

9 thoughts from my 9th month as a parent

 

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