Ideas for Rainy Days

rainy dayI am so happy to be able to FINALLY say that the holidays have begun! Sausage has had an amazing year at school, thanks to her own hard work and her fabulous year 2 teacher but now we’re looking forward to 6 and a bit weeks of fun, relaxation and adventures. We’ve got a whole bunch of things planned for the break, such as trips to the park and the beach, weather permitting! Often, though, it’s rainy days which can be the toughest to fill, so we thought we’d give you a few suggestions of what to do on days when outdoor fun is out of the question.

1. Online Games

Sausage is the owner of several electronic devices, such as an iPad and a laptop, and although we like to limit the amount of screen time she has, the holidays seems like a good time to allow her a little extra. She’s very excited about going to see Inside Out and these games give her a great little preview of what to expect.

2. Den Building

If there’s one thing my girls love, it’s building a den. Even something as simple as hanging a large sheet over two dining chairs creates a precious little space that they can retreat into to pretend they’re in a cave or a spaceship. BB may not be quite as conscious of what is happening but that doesn’t stop her having a whale of a time with her big sis!

3. Cinema

Going to the movies is a classic rainy-day activity and there are some great kids films in theatres at the moment, including the Minions movie and Inside Out. There are lots of deals for cheap cinema tickets if you look for them, and taking your own sweets and drinks (frowned upon in some cinemas but by no means illegal!) will help save the pennies.

4. Take a Bath

Okay, so taking a bath might seem like a chore to a lot of kids, but that usually because they’re short and punctuated by a lot of washing! Sausage loves nothing more than being given the time to sit in a nice warm bath, playing with her toys, making potions from shampoo and pretending she’s a mermaid. It costs nothing and will easily pass an hour when the weather is grim.

5. Mummy Makeover

This one is only for the brave! Sausage is at that stage where she likes to play at being a grown up, and while we’d NEVER allow her out of the house in make-up, letting her experiment at home is fairly harmless. I’ll let her use my make-up, or sometimes do it for her…but the really brave part is when I let her put make-up on ME! I’ve been given some very interesting looks in the past but it amuses Sausage no end.

Family · Parenting · Pregnancy · Relationships

Carry On Regardless (or: Life With a Newborn)

baby in cinemaI’m not going to lie; while I’m really excited about our imminent (yep, less than 8 weeks left now!) arrival, I’m also apprehensive about what it means for our lives. There are lots of things that we enjoy doing, as a family of three, that I’m concerned won’t be able to continue as a family of 4. For instance, we tend to take Sausage to the cinema quite regularly, especially if there’s a new kids film out, but I’m not sure how a newborn would fit into that scenario?

The cinema we go to is a small, independent theatre with fewer seats per screen and early morning showings (it’s also not as loud as a lot of cinemas seem to be, either), so in theory I’m hoping that I can wear the baby in a sling and try to time showings between feeds, that way if she gets fussy during a film, I can simply walk outside with her and try to settle her without disturbing other film-goers. I know some theatres do baby-friendly showings, but I don’t think there are any near us.

Sausage and I like to go swimming together occasionally too, and our pool has strict ratios of how many kids per adult there are. I’m hoping that Sausage will see taking her baby sister as a fun thing, not an interruption of Mummy/Sausage time, although obviously there’ll be times that Husband is able to take care of the baby whilst Sausage and I go for a dip.

I’m also getting pre-emptive guilt about taking Sausage to school and having the baby at home with me. I know I’m being irrational; Sausage had her time at home with us and was lucky enough to have both parents working from home during that time, so a LOT of quality was spent together during those years, but she still struggles on occasion with being left at school while her Dad and I are at home and I’m worried that knowing her sister will be here with us too will make her feel worse or isolate her somehow.

I know it’s totally normal to have all of these worries and, in a way, I’m glad I’m thinking about everything now so that I can be marginally more prepared if these situations arise. However, I most certainly don’t have any answers at this precise moment and it’s causing horrible anxiety levels ahead of my due date.

I’m pretty certain that Sausage is going to WOW us all and just be totally amazing about everything, in that way that she always is, showing her usual levels of patience and understanding. The age gap is both a blessing and a curse – Sausage is old enough to understand everything that’s going on and has been as involved as possible in the pregnancy, coming to scan appointments, helping me to rub cocoa butter into my bump and feeling her sister moving around. But she’s also old enough to feel pushed out when Mummy has to spend her time doing baby-related things, and that’s what’s worrying me.

So, do any of my readers have a 5 and a half year age gap (or more)? Is it possible to continue doing normal family activities with a newborn or am I going to have to compromise on certain things? And is there a good way to make sure Sausage and I don’t lose our special bond? All advice is muchly appreciated.