Wednesday, 23 June 2010

Who Needs 'em?

Oh, and in case you were wondering, single parenting seems to be suiting me surprisingly well (R is off in the army). Under my watchful single eye (just call me Cyclops) No has progressed to sleeping a whopping 10 hours straight (well, she's done it a few times over the last week), I've found the time and enthusiasm to cook myself all sorts of fancy and delicious food that I never really bother with when Reto's home, I've scrubbed half the flat in preparation for moving (next week!) and packed a fair bit of it as well. I'm also an expert (albeit a fairly fed up one) at lugging our stupid pram up and down our stupid stairs a million times a day,and wrangling it onto buses and trains and through tiny tortuous aisles in shops. In between that and all the baby-carrying I'm constantly doing, I'm sure my arms have never worked so hard. Oh, and I successfully took No off for her first lot of vaccinations, which she coped with admirably for the first second or so, but then the realisation that she'd been stabbed in the leg set in and she screamed like she's never screamed before, poor little thing.

Unfortunately, Reto comes home again on Friday (having finished all his army duty forever!) and will no doubt throw everything into disarray, or at the very least force me to watch a lot of sport (Wimbledon AND the World Cup, zzzz) on the telly.


Being Australian, I think I'm supposed to be genetically programmed to call everyone by a shortened version of their actual name. I've always been a bit uncomfortable with jumping into the nickname pool with people I don't know very well (as in when you meet someone and they say "Call me JayJay! Everyone does!") but in general I thoroughly approve. I'm not really sure, though, what I'm supposed to do about all these babies I've been meeting lately. The vast bulk of the parents seem to call their new babies by their full names, rarely using any sort of nickname. It seems a bit crazy to call these tiny funny little people long, serious names (Benjamin? The name's longer than the baby is!), but everyone seems to and I rarely hear shorter versions being bandied about. I've even heard people say that they don't like it when babies are referred to by too many different names because they find it confusing and they imagine the babies must too. Hmm.

Fortunately this isn't a problem that keeps me up at night, and I can cope with the drama of calling children (or anyone!) by their full name if I feel I have to. Rest assured, though, that, should you happen to meet my daughter, she has a million nicknames, we rarely use her actual name, and that you can call her practically anything you want. No, Nonie, Noé, N, Nonifer, None (rhymes with "zone"), any one of a squillion embarrassing babyish nicknames with "muffin" and "pudding" and other dessert items in them. Even the full Noémie if you want to be original.

She doesn't seem to be suffering any sort of crisis of identity yet.

Thursday, 3 June 2010

Things I Could Have Blogged About Lately ..

.. but didn't.

As it turns out, babies aren't to be trusted at all. Just when I think she's getting in the habit of something, she changes her mind and does things completely differently. Which is bad when her non-habit has been sleeping for 6 hours a night, good when it's crying and crying and crying every time I have the audacity not to hold her constantly.

If only I had a phone with a camera (as opposed to one with no features at all, which is what I do have. Still, it's capable of sending SMSes, so it's far superior to my previous phone) I could have taken all sorts of pictures of interesting things lately. Especially mysterious horse parades through Bern (I think they were protesting about something. I've never seen so many foals and shetland ponies at a protest) and the adorable baby bears, who are still very cute and are much more adept at tree climbing than they used to be.

Reusable nappies are far better than I anticipated. They always seemed like a good choice from an environmental smugness perspective, but I heard so many negative things about them (usually stories involving poo explosions) that my hopes were pretty low. As it turns out, the ones we got (Bambinex, in case you're interested. Which we chose because they were about the only ones we could find in Switzerland) have been perfectly good so far. The main negative aspect that we've discovered is that by the time we've folded them down to their smallest size and then velcroed them up and put on the waterproof top layer, No's bottom half is so enormous that she really can't fit into the clothes she normally wears.

Reto will be abandoning me to single parenthood quite a lot in the coming weeks. There's a practice run where he goes away for work for a night, and then the extended version where he spends a few weeks gallivanting around and playing with guns/bayonets in the army. Of course I won't have time to worry about my abandonment issues or looking after No on my own, because I'll be too busy packing up all our belongings so that we can move into our new flat a few days after R gets back. Great.