Aimee Horton

When it comes to sharing.

Apr
25

My boys are getting older.  They’re starting to interact more, and they both enjoy their little imagination games at their own levels.

The Beast is Spiderman “cccsshhhh” “Hello Man, I’m Spiderman” “You be the butterfly and I be the spiderman”, and Fatty is just all about pushing his cars around and wandering around carrying various small figures in his hands “KKSSHHHHHHHHH”.  They’re both actually very cute.

I find it much easier to join in with the Fat One, it’s just much more simple (read my level) compared to the Beast and his ideas.

I’m RUBBISH at imaginary play, partly because I really have no desire to fight with webs whilst flapping my arms pretending to be the butterfly, and partly because I’m obviously not “down with it”.  The Beast frequently tells me off for doing it wrong  “no, you don’t flap your wings like that” “no, spiderman doesn’t shoot his webs like THAT silly” “no no no no NO MUMMY, Dinosaur doesn’t talk like that he talks like this”, and even the time I was relegated to mountain status, I failed to do my job properly, I was bored of lying on the floor while Buzz launched to infinity and beyond using my stomach as a launch pad, whilst Spiderman shot webs at my face.  So I had a quick look at twitter, and promptly got told off.  I wasn’t even allowed to close my eyes and have a nap.

Fatty is much easier.  I just get to push cars along the floor “brrummm brummm” or “choo choo” and I do a cracking building a tower and looking gutted when it’s knocked down, causing his little fat face to wobble with hysterics.  He doesn’t care what sort of voice I use as long as it’s a bit silly and contains a bit of body slamming in the process.  Rough nut.

The nice thing about the above, is that because their personalities are growing and developing, they’re beginning to play together, entertain one another, make up their own games.  Fatty will happily gaze in awe at the Beast while he does, well,  anything.    I can actually go for a wee without an audience, I am starting to remember what it’s like to apply eye liner without a car driving up my leg.  It’s amazing.

But there is a downside to the whole playing on their own.  Fatso REALLY REALLY loves The Beasts toys.  I mean, properly loves.  As soon as he spots his favourite Dinosaur lying on the floor he pounces on it “KSSHHHHH KSHHHHH” carrying it about jabbing it at other toys or in the air.  As soon as he notices Spiderman hanging from his web stuck to the patio doors he’s on it happily bending his legs and fingers “SSKKKKZZZZ SKKZZZZ” and as soon as the stair gate to the top floor is left open he is up those stairs as quick as a flash and grabbing the Hot Wheels cars and lining them up or dropping them down the ramp on the Fisher Price Garage.

The Beast, on the other hand, has amazingly rediscovered some toys he’d discarded for being “babyish” and “boring” and they are suddenly cool and “big boy not toggler” toys.  Such a coincidence that they’re the same toys that The Fat One loves.

So we have fights.  Proper, fisticuffs.  Yesterday there was this car.  A car which has been hiding at the bottom of the toy box for about a year and a half.  A car which The Beast never liked that much. A car which The Fat One is in love with .  You press the button on its top and it revs its engine before racing across the floor at top speed.  Suddenly The Beast likes it a lot.  “THAT’S MY CAR”.  I try and get them to share, but at one point I came back into the room after putting some washing in the dryer to find The Beast lying on his back, car above his head shouting “no no no THAT’S MY CAR” while Fatty was body slamming him and hitting him on the stomach and face.

I may have stood and watched briefly laughing, before confiscating the car.

Now, we’ve tried to fob The Fat one off.  He has his own age appropriate dinosaurs, he has his own chunky cars, he has his own more suitable little people to play with, even his own Buzz and Woody, but at the end of the day he’s really not interested…even if the Beast is.  He quite like playing with them all.

So I’ve made an executive decision, I’m going to just leave them too it, sumo wrestling for babies…I could make a FORTUNE.  I’m going to play it by ear.  Sometimes I will let them fight it out, sometimes I will tell one or the other off.

I guess the biggest thing I’ll encourage is sharing, although they both share quite well at nursery/when friends come to play, sibling sharing is a totally different kettle of fish isn’t it? You would rather play with the most boring toy in the world rather then have your brother or sister play with it.  Especially if they REALLY REALLY want it.

When you make the ultimate sacrifice.

Feb
27

As parents we all make sacrifices, and as you are all aware I frequently moan discuss them in this blog.  There are the little things, not drinking whilst pregnant, getting fat, stretch marks, late nights, early mornings, clean tidy houses, the ability to leave the house with less than 20 million hours preparation, the list is endless.  However, for me, there is one sacrifice which has been harder to swallow than any other.

Sharing. My. Food.  For those of you who don’t know me very well “Aimee doesn’t share food”.  This isn’t just me trying to be a character from Friends (apparently I don’t have to try, 99% of the time I’m Monica, just ask my family). Anyway, it’s true.  I may have had a rocky introduction to food until I was about 18 (I tended to live on peanut butter and jam sandwiches or pizza and chips).  But I’ve always been quite, er, let’s say, protective of it.

A good example of this would perhaps be my first date with Matthew.  We went to the cinema – we saw The Faculty for those of you who are interested – and Matt said “we’ll just get a big bag of whatever you fancy and share”.  I HONESTLY thought he was joking.  I mean, SHARE sweets?!  I thought no more of it, picked up a big bag of Opal Fruits (NOT Starburst) and trotted in, my mind on whether he’d try and hold my hand or “maybe more” (by maybe more maybe try and put his hand on my knee).  Anyway, half way through a scary scene, he reaches over…my heart beats with excitement, I KNEW he fancied me, I KNEW we weren’t “Just Friends” as we pitched it to each other…I try and pull myself together, then suddenly a rustle.  I realise he’s putting his hand in my bag of sweets.  Without thinking I slap his hand away.  I have to do this three more times before he gets the message.

Yes.  I’m surprised he married me too.

Anyway, these days people know not to come towards my plate if I’m holding a knife and fork in fear of getting stabbed, if Matthew nicks a chip off my plate I redistribute before carrying them across to the table. But, since I’ve had children, things have changed somewhat.  I SHARE MY FOOD WITH MY CHILDREN.

How did it happen? What changed me? Am I perhaps softening in my old age? To be honest, I’m not sure.  Possibly.  All I know is that every meal I have with my children, without fail; I share some of it with both boys.  Whether we are eating the same, or I have something different, I end up stabbing and passing.  I notice that Matt doesn’t do this, except maybe a bit of meat off his Sunday roast.  I give up WHOLE Yorkshire puddings (sob), bits of pastry, spoonful’s of curry, bites of sandwiches, handfuls of crisps and nibbles of biscuits.  I ENCOURAGE my children to try my food.  This utterly selfless gesture goes unnoticed.  Often rebuffed by the eldest child, turning his nose up or wrinkling his forehead.  Bagels get licked then thrown on the floor; pasta gets stolen from the plate and discarded for a pea.  The list is endless.

So why do I make this sacrifice?  I want my children to enjoy food and have a healthy attitude towards it. I want them be adventurous with what they eat, to see it as a fun and social part of the day.  Oh. Plus, every now and then I break out the “nursery” food, and share fish fingers and potato waffles with them…after all, it’s a two way street isn’t it?!