Mommy in London

Trying to figure things out!

Visiting Work

Well, the day has finally arrived, I went into work to show off my little bundle of joy.  He’s not such a little bundle at 4 1/2 months old, but because I have to take the tube to work I wasn’t prepared to take him any earlier than this.

I was feeling really anxious this morning!  At my end the tube station is step free, so that wasn’t any problem, but I was dreading the 2 flights of stairs at the station near work.  I got onto the tube fine and found a good spot to sit and park the pram, thinking that at 11am we’d have lots of space and it wouldn’t be a problem.  But the tube got so full!  Who are all of these people and why aren’t they at work at that time of day?  When I got to my stop I slowly approached the stairs, and luckily a woman with a pram volunteered the assistance of her friend to help me up the first flight of stairs.  I then went through the ticket gate and approached the second set of stairs.  I had to stand there for a couple of minutes looking pathetic and then looking like I was going to attempt to carry the pram up the steps by myself, when another kind stranger rushed over to help.

That was the first hurdle done, now for the ordeal of actually going to work!  It was actually a lot better than I had expected.  E was on his best behaviour.  I think he was memorised by all of the bright colours and new faces.  He was even good with the other children.  They were so sweet, I don’t think that most of them remembered me because I haven’t been there in so long, but they were very excited to see a baby at school!  When they were all sitting on the carpet I brought him over and one of them said “Can I stroke him?”  So I said yes and they all crowded around touching his hands and feet and commenting on how small he is.  It was adorable!  But my shy little boy’s pout did come out after a few minutes so I just cuddled him, and he was fine.

Then after the children left I had lunch with the teachers and he happily played on the carpet and didn’t fuss.  He didn’t even mind being passed around to all the teachers for a cuddle.  They kept commenting on how chilled he was, which I am taking to be a major compliment.  He did fuss a little bit, but I think that it’s a sign that I can really read his cues that I was able to settle him quickly without anyone really noticing that there had even been a problem.  My little guy is such a star!

Then the tube ride back was fairly uneventful.  Again I had people rushing to help us down the stairs, and E happily played in his pram all the way home.

It’s funny, I truly feel like I’ve achieved something today.  I think that it had been weighing on my mind more than I realised, and now I feel like the world is our oyster!  We can get around London easily if we just plan things out well.  As for the work side of things, that was good too.  It was all exactly the same as it always has been.  I think that I was worried that everything would feel different, like it had changed loads since I’d been away.  But that wasn’t the case at all…some things never change!

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My baby has eczema

I have suspected for some time that E has eczema as from when he was a few weeks old he has had some bumpy patches of skin (and because I have asthma and allergies he is prone to it).  We were using some very good oil, lotion and a baby balm from Neal’s Yard

http://www.nealsyardremedies.com/Baby

which I really love and have definitely helped with E’s cradle cap and general dry skin, but it hasn’t really made a difference on the really dry patches around his ankles.

Then yesterday when I put it on his tummy he started trying to scratch and then let out a terrible pained cry, and I decided that it was time for the next step.  So we went to the doctor today and he has diagnosed E with baby eczema and prescribed a few different things for him.  One is a wash, one is a steroid cream for his body and one is a cream for his nappy rash (which has also become quite bad).

I’m torn, because I mostly want to use natural products on him, but I definitely can’t leave this as it is, as he is clearly in pain right now.  So I am looking into alternatives, but wondering if I should use the prescriptions for a week or so until this flare up clears, and then find some natural alternatives.  I just don’t want to use these and cause him to become dependant on them or somehow make the problem worse.

My research so far has found…

Things we are already doing right:

* not giving him too many baths

* not using any soaps or shampoos or baby wipes (just cotton wool and water)

* using a good moisturiser regularly (although I think we can use it more, recommended to use 20 minutes before bed as eczema can cause sleep disturbances, which could explain a lot!)

* keeping the room cool and using light layers on him while he sleeps (as heat can aggravate it)

* dressing him primarily in cotton clothes (as other materials can irritate it)

* giving him nappy free time (although we could be doing this more and I want to find a good large mat to do it on)

 

Other options could include:

* keeping a diary of what I eat and see if there’s any connection to his flare ups?

* avoiding certain products (I have already switched to the eco laundry detergent rather than the regular ‘baby’ ones which I think were irritating his skin.  Is there something better?)

* switching the type of nappies that we use?  could it be something in the nappies that he’s reacting to?

* going to the salt cave http://www.saltcave.co.uk/eczema.html?gclid=CO3Wz8D8oq4CFYUgfAodlgN-Rg

 

It looks like I have a lot more reading to do!

Does anyone else have experience with baby eczema?  What did you use?

 

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Is my baby shy?

Maybe it’s a bit of a funny question, but I really didn’t think that a baby this young (he’s 4 months old) could actually be shy already.  I thought that was something that came a bit later.  But the past couple of weeks I’ve noticed that he is more clingy and shys away from most people.  He is a very happy, smiling, giggling baby at home but is Mr Serious when we’re out and about, he will hardly crack a smile.

I was starting to worry that he wasn’t enjoying Gymboree, because he would sometimes start to pout and cry when laying on the mat, but then he would be ok when I picked him up and put him on my lap.  Then we had our first proper playdate this week (we usually meet the NCT Mums and babies at a cafe, but actually had one of them over) and this is a baby that he has seen pretty much every week for his whole life, and when she was here smiling and cooing at him, guess what?  He pouted and cried!

So instead of just thinking that I have a grumpy baby on my hands, I am wondering if he’s shy or introverted and finds being around other babies a bit overwhelming.  Then I read this article http://www.babysleepsite.com/tag/shy-baby/ and started to think that may in fact be the case.   A lot of articles also seem to say that you can see a baby’s true temperament come out at around 4 months, so that may be why this is more apparent now.

Does anyone else have a shy baby and have ideas on how to best handle it?

I’m thinking that we shouldn’t stop doing activities and having play dates, but maybe we should build up to them and wind down from them better?

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Teething Bites!

Wow, I heard that teething was bad, but I had no idea it was this bad! I feel like my poor E has been teething forever! (It’s really only been a couple of weeks, but it’s agonising!) He’s only just 4 months old, so I know that this process will go on for awhile, I just need something to make him feel better!
So far nothing seems to work! We’ve tried:
~ amber teething anklet (doesn’t seem to do anything)
~ teething rings that you put in the fridge (he seems to like them but can’t hold it in his mouth by himself)
~ bonjela (didn’t seem to make a difference at all)
~ calpol (seemed to make him happy for a little while, but not very long)
~ a teething ring that looks like a dummy/pacifier (I thought this would be perfect, but he can’t figure it out, just wants to suck on it!)
~ nelsons teething powder (just got this and tried it once, it did seem to make the redness in his cheek go, so I’ll be trying this one again)

I saw some NCT friends yesterday and a baby girl that’s 1 day older than E has 2 tiny little teeth poking out! So maybe his are on the way, and then hopefully he’ll get a little break at least!

Other suggestions welcome!

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Snow in London

It finally snowed in London!!! As a Canadian I find this very exciting, I love the snow! And I couldn’t wait to take Ethan out to experience his first snow fall!

It started snowing on Saturday night after we’d already put Ethan to bed, and as much as I really wanted to get him up and bring him out right then, I was sensible and decided to wait until morning 😉

So we got up bright and early on Sunday, got him all bundled up and went for a walk in the snow! It was fun to take photos of him in the snow and watch all of the other kids sledging and building snowmen. Thinking about what he’ll be like in a few years and how we have all of that to come!

We had a really fun day, I’m so glad we got at least 1 snow day this winter!

Here’s Ethan’s snow angel print 🙂

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