Saturday, 26 September 2015

What a difference a year makes

This time last year was probably my lowest point as a mummy. I'd spent most of the afternoon in A&E with Monkey after her arms and legs had swollen up and she'd got very wheezy.

A&E sent us down to the children's observation and assessment unit who decided to admit her. It was about this time when we went onto the ward. Monkey was in a lot of pain and crying lots. We were quickly moved to a private room so we didn't disturb all the other children.

All day as we were moved from one department to another I'd kept it together. But when we finally got Monkey to sleep and my husband and mum left the hospital, I cried. There had been something going on with Monkey from the day she was born and the last month had been horrendous. We'd been sent to the hospital loads of times but this was our first overnight stay. She looked so tiny and helpless in that hospital cot. And I didn't feel like there was anything I could do to help her.

Fast forward a year and I'm feeling so much more positive. We ended up in hospital for five nights and although it was horrible it did mean we finally got Monkey's allergies confirmed and came under the care of a consultant and dietitian.

Monkey is doing great now. She's still small but she is back on the chart and following her line. She's happy and smiley and into everything. She loves her food which can be tricky as she still doesn't understand that some foods make her poorly.

We still don't really know what will happen with Monkey's allergies. There are no plans to reintroduce any of the main allergens until January at the very earliest. There is talk of more tests as she gets older but in the meantime we are just enjoying life. I still worry and there are still days where it's all a bit overwhelming but on the whole as long as we avoid certain foods everything is fine. Just look at the difference a year makes!


Look in My Letterbox #6

Look in my letterbox is a weekly linky running on Saturdays. It's to showcase everything you've received through the letterbox that week. This could be  competition wins, freebies, review products or even a rant about the bills all posts are welcome as long as the item was received that week:
  • Linky runs Saturday to the following Friday
  • Link 1 post showcasing either a haul or a singular item you've received through the letterbox this week
  • Mention me on twitter @mummysmonkey #LIML for a retweet
  • I visit all my linkers and promote during the week, it would be lovely if you could visit your fellow linkers
  • Spread the word!
I'm very excited to be guest hosting Look in my letterbox this week while the lovely Alice Megan has a well deserved break. Anybody who reads my blog regularly will know that me and Monkey love our post and that this is one of my favourite link ups.

Monkey has been sad this week as she's had no post at all. She's expecting a couple of things next week though and maybe some penpal letters too.

It's been a quiet week for me as well. I've had three penpal letters, two from Scotland and one from Blackpool. I've also had my final statement from my Christmas hamper savings which has got me very giddy. I've done some Christmas shopping already but as soon as my vouchers arrive it's time for the serious shopping to start!

The most exciting post this week has been the first few birthday cards starting to arrive. It's not my birthday until Thursday but I have organised friends!

What's dropped through your letterbox this week? Link up and tell us!

Monday, 21 September 2015

Elmer at baby book club

We've had another lovely afternoon at baby book club. Today we read Elmer. I'm goibg to be completely honest and say I chose this book based purely on the fact that I'd seen an activity I wanted to do.

Elmer is one of those books that I thought I knew. After all, it's been around for ages and everybody recognises that cute little patchwork elephant. But when it came to planning book club I realised I didn't have the book and I didn't really know the story.

I wasn't going to let that stop me though. Off to Amazon I went and grabbed myself a copy of the book. And what a lovely book it was!

I loved the theme in Elmer that it was ok to be different and that you shouldn't have to change in order to be accepted. It was great that they could get this message across in a way that was fun for children and didn't come across as too preachy.

As always after reading the story together, we got messy together at book club. We had two activities today. The first was to make our very own patchwork elephants using cut down milk bottles and tissue paper. I was quite impressed with my example one but soon discovered it was much more difficult with Monkey helping. She seemed to enjoy taking the paper squares off much more than putting them on. We got there in the end though.

The next activity was to help all the grey elephants get ready for Elmer's Day by decorating them with bright colours. We decided that just as Elmer rolled in elephant coloured berries to disguise themselves, the grey elephants should roll in brightly coloured berries. The babies loved squashing all the berries with their toy elephants and of course they ate lots too. And made a total mess!

The next book club is a book that's a favourite of Little Hercules - 
The Bears in the Bed and the Great Big Storm. We've never read it before so we're looking forward to that. What have you been reading this week?

Saturday, 19 September 2015

Look in my letterbox #5

Well, with one thing and another I haven't managed to blog for a while. I even missed last week's Look in my letterbox which I'm annoyed at myself for.

I'm back to normal this week though so here is what's arrived at the Monkey House this week. As always I'm linking up with the lovely Alice Megan.

It's been a very quiet week here. Just two letters for me, and none for Monkey. My letters both came from pals in England who share my love of cute writing sets. I love seeing such bright and colourful envelopes come through my letterbox. So much nicer than boring old bills!

The only other thing that's arrived is an envelope full of envelopes! It sounds strange but it's a way of raising funds for our Baby Book Club. We're registered with a website who buy used stamps from fundraisers. It's ideal for somebody like me who gets a lot of post but it's something that all of the members can get involved in. They sent me pre-paid envelopes to give out at our next book club on Monday. I'm hoping it will be successful. It's really important to me to keep book club free but it's grown faster than expected and we don't get any funding. If you have any used stamps, I'll gladly take them off your hands!

Monday, 7 September 2015

The Tiger Who Came to Tea

When I was a little girl The Tiger Who Came to Tea by Judith Kerr was one of my favourite books. I'm not quite sure why I loved it so much. It's quite a simple story but it's always made me smile.

When Monkey was born I knew I wanted to do lots of reading with her. The Tiger Who Came to Tea was one of the first books I bought her. We've read it loads and it's become a firm favourite with her just as it was with me.

So I suppose it was only a matter of time until we read it at baby book club. And today was the day.

It was a busy book club today. We've been at the children's centre a while now but this was the first one that had been properly advertised and open to everyone. We had five babies who were joining us for the first time which was great to see. It's amazing how quickly it's grown from just a few friends in my front room.

As always we started by reading the story out loud. We then had a pretend tea party. The children played with tea sets and ate biscuits. We've found some Monkey safe biscuits lately so she was very pleased with that activity.

The craft activity this week was a tiger collage. We had a black sugar paper tiger and an assortment of orange things to make the stripes. We had patterned paper, lentils, foam, netting, tissue paper and ribbon. The lentils ended up everywhere but some did make it onto the tigers.

I've got very happy memories of this book and I hope that after this afternoon the baby book club members will have too.


Saturday, 5 September 2015

Look in my letterbox #4

It's been a busy week for my letterbox this week. Here's my weekly round up, linking up with Alice Megan as usual.

Monday was a Bank Holiday so no post here. It did give me a chance to catch up with some of my replies though.

I got my favourite piece of post on Tuesday. Last week I wrote about a christmas card for Regina. Regina is a little girl who lives in Uganda. I sponsor her through the charity World Vision and they sent me an update of their work in her community. It's always amazing to see what a difference a small amount can make. What I really liked about this update though was that I got an up to date photo of Regina.

There was no post at the Monkey House on Wednesday but then on Thursday there were four penpal letters for me and one for Monkey.

A bumper parcel arrived on Friday jam-packed with charity goodies. There were also penpal letters in there for both me and Monkey. Monkey's was written in this beautiful hand made card. These tiny penpals are certainly talented!

There were no penpal letters this morning but there was still post. We got the latest newsletter from Allergy UK. They've really helped me and Monkey (I blogged about it here) so we like to keep updated and support them with fundraising when we can.