Archive for the ‘baby preparations’ Category

I was planning on using these posts purely for comic effect but I have to report on this one and anyway sod it it’s my blog I can do and say what I please.

after last weeks chaos with children’s lurgy induced stay at home dad before I’m supposed to be a stay at home dad the return of the boys to nursery and me to my penultimate Monday in the office was a little rushed this morning and as such I probably didn’t handle or deal with this utterance with as much excitement or deference as I should have done at the time, in fact I think my response to Mrs BC when she pointed it out to me was something along the lines of “that’s nice Dear, but we’re late”. This has weighed rather heavily on my mind all day and I’ve realised that I’m a complete arse and should instead have lavished said child with praise and adoration.

What can I say, I’m a prize arse who’s not much good with mornings, especially mornings when I’m running late.

I hear you cry from the peanut gallery “what was this darn utterance from your progeny?”

I stress again, I’m a total arse, who should be strung up by his short and curlies by the gods of karma.

Todays utterance came from my youngest and was quite simply “Dad”

God I’m a prize arse.

He’s been babbling for some time now and we’ve had plenty of “mamamamama’s” and “dadadadadada’s” but this was quite clearly “Dad”.

I cannot wait until the end of next week when I remove myself from the rat race and can properly dedicate my heart and soul to my dear sweet innocent boys to the extent that they so rightly deserve.

Sometimes we just have to slow down and consider what’s important in life, would it really have mattered if I was two minutes later for work? No not really, I’m the boss anyway and even if my boss who’s not been in today had queried it, what was he going to do, fire me?

Sometimes in life you do things you wouldn’t dream of doing if you thought about them.

I really hate myself today.

What an arse I am.

TTFN

Mr Bunny I’m an Arse Chow

can you believe that my little Bug is one year old already?

In order to celebrate we decided that a tip to the seaside was in order, not so much because he would enjoy it, he’s one, he can be entertained by a cardboard box but we had a craving for Jamie’s Italian and anyway who really needs an excuse to visit the seaside.

Whilst there I was of course armed with my ever present EOS10D.

Hope you’re all having a great week.

TTFN

Mr Bunny Chow

when I first started this blog I’d never even read another blog or even given much thought over to blogging as a means of communication.

My early posts were mostly long rambling complaints about terrible customer service I’d received from a succession of terrible companies and restaurants and I was seething and boiling over to the point of driving my nearest and dearest to distraction so rather than continuing to vent my frustrations on those nearest me, I started ranting, initially on blogger and then shortly after emigrating wholesale to WordPress. Rather than finding a niche early on as my anger faded I began doing a few reviews and even wrote what remains my biggest hit as far as search engine traffic my glowing review of the service provided by the Courtney Boot Company. As a side note, nearly a year on from getting my boots back I’m still wearing them daily.

I also began writing a few posts about becoming a father for the second time and my thoughts and feelings surrounding that as almost everything I read or heard would discuss the mothers thoughts, fears and perspectives, that’s not to put those down it’s simply a comment about the lack or support I could find for us blokes who’re too tough and macho to talk about our feelings with real people, and where there is plenty of support out there for mums there’s not a lot out there for dads.

In the run up to the new year I gained a little fervour for food blogging and launched www.mrbunnychowcooks.com which initially gained great traction but fell largely by the wayside when I managed to stab myself and began my Ouch series, I also began my project 52 at the start of the year, rekindling my long-held passion for photography and bringing another change of focus to these pages.

Anyway what I’ve been meaning to get around to with all of this rambling is what initially brought you to www.mrbunnychow.com do you visit regularly, do you know me personally, do you like reading about me blowing a gasket, do you like looking at pretty pictures, do you subscribe or just pop in occasionally having seen a link or comment on another site.

Blogging success has never been and never will be my aim I’m just a curious geek wondering who my readers are and why you are.

Please do comment below and let me know as much or as little about yourself as you are comfortable with.

alternatively you can always send me a private message via rantingmrbunnychow@gmail.com

I hope you’re all well out there

TTFN

Mr Bunny Chow

Good day to you dear readers,

As some of my longer term readers may recall I posted back in November last year about our search for more family friendly transport and how it was time to grow up and move away from our very comfortable and seemingly practical but actually rather small Audi A4 Avant and hugely reliable and faithful Toyota Corolla.

Whilst it has been useful for us to have two cars whilst Mrs Bunny Chow has been on maternity leave the grim reality is that it’s hugely expensive and even with Mrs BC at home the second car was still only being used at most once or twice a week, so with the dreaded triumvirate of MOT/Annual services, Insurance and Road Tax renewals looming in the near future we renewed our search.

I spoke before about numerous options and whilst it was a fun idea trying to justify getting a 4×4 especially with snow on the ground outside we really couldn’t afford one of the big ones unless they were starting to get a bit old and a bit tatty and things like the Honda CRV, Toyota Rav4 and Landrover Freelander are just too small to meet our need to carry two children a dog and some detritus, not forgetting the odd friend or family member.

So with reality in check I began looking at our options, I already outlined that anything French or made by General Motors was off the shopping list because a man can only be pushed so far, but I was quite taken by some of the Korean offerings, at least on paper.

I went and looked at a Kia Sedona which is huge and very comfortable but it’s biggest failing is that the rearmost seats don’t fold flat and need to be removed and stored somewhere else when not in use or you need some boot-space. I have to admit that I also wasn’t overly enamoured with the perceived quality of the interior, I know that this is a practical decision but beige velour was perhaps taking things a mite too far.

I also looked at a couple of Hyundai Santa Fe’s which I liked a lot, they were still a little bit scratchy plastic on the inside but nothing I couldn’t live with, the reasons that they fell by the wayside though was that they were wide enough for three proper seats in the back but lacked those sixth and seventh seats and concerns over fuel economy/running costs of that unnecessary 4×4 system.

I also looked at and dismissed all of the VW Group options like the VW Sharan, Seat Alhambra and VW Touran based on expense and lack of boot-space with the sixth and seventh seats in place.

I hadn’t entirely dismissed the option of one of Ford’s S-MAX or Galaxy models but the local main dealer didn’t seem all that keen on winning our custom and most of the examples I found outside of their group and within budget were either private sales which would mean us having to sell the old cars ourselves which would mean going through the aforementioned expense of MOT’s, Servicing and a general scrub up. We also had the problem with the older models sharing the seating issue of the Kia Sedona in that the rearmost seats would need removal if not in use.

I then came across something called the Mazda5 which was smaller than the Kia and Ford Options but still gave us seven seats (admittedly only six for any longer journey) that fold flat into the floor, some boot space with all seven seats in place and very handy sliding rear doors. I didn’t know much about the Mazda5 but established that it was built on Ford’s global C1 platform which also includes things like the Ford Focus, Ford C-MAX and Ford Kuga, various Volvo’s and the Mazda 3.

This seemed like a good bet to me, I already liked the C-MAX but had dismissed it for the lack of a seven seat option and having really enjoyed all of the Focus’s I’ve driven over the years. I booked a test drive which conveniently was the morning after several inches of snowfall allowing me to test the car risk free in what was possibly the worst conditions it would ever have to face. The dealership is a local non franchise who’ve been around for over thirty years and even sold us our Audi.

They very bravely handed me the keys and sent me on my way onto a gritted main road which allowed me to give it a bootful and see if I could live with the performance deficit over my beloved Audi and I have to say I was pleasantly surprised, the 2.0l Petrol engine, pushed me along in a perfectly acceptable and maybe even slightly thrilling manner, sure it’s not a sports car but it’s more than quick enough to cope with the conditions in which I do ninety percent of my driving and will even dismiss of members of the proletariat driving Micra’s and other hateful little supermini’s without complaint.

After picking up Mrs Bunny Chow and installing my progeny in the rearmost seats, we confirmed that you could indeed still fit three adults in the rear all be it with the middle seat being reserved strictly for shorter journeys, but it does also convert into a toy bin or table or away completely when not in use which is very handy in itself. The drivers compartment on this Furano Limited Edition Sport Model is well laid out with most of the toys you’d expect, climate control (single zone) an in dash 6 cd autochanger which will play mp3 cd’s and innumerable cup holders and cubby holes. The online reviews I have read suggest that the Mazda is behind its French competitors in this area but I certainly didn’t find it lacking.

Now loaded up we took the car over some of the area’s less well cleared roads and even ventured successfully into a completely untouched snow-covered car park and the car just continued on with minimal complaint. Yes in comparison to my Audi some of the plastics feel a little cheap, but it is several years newer and has half the mileage of my Audi. It also suits the family better and is a pretty good drive whilst managing not to look like it should be being driven by a gauloises smoking, taxi driving, axe murderer. In other words I was sold on the Mazda5.

Being the first example of its kind that I’d seen I held off on making an offer there and then and went to see a newer but base specification model at another local used car dealer but it was grey and without the sporty body kit or toys inside and to be honest it just seemed that although it was slightly lower mileage had had a tougher life than the first car. So with that in mind negotiations over trade in values for our old cars and some minor work we wanted done on the new car (the addition of rear parking sensors and new brakes all round) we came to a deal.

We should be able to pick it up and say goodbye to our trusty old cars on Saturday.

So there you go, you can get a dad car that isn’t a bus or over the top 4×4.

TTFN

Mr Bunny Chow

Howdy readers,

Just thought I’d throw this story out there and ask if any of you had experienced similar injuries or had any thoughts or advice.

On the Friday before Christmas we had some friends over for gift giving and a few drinks and whilst I was distracted by drinks fetching and an over excited toddler who wanted their new toys out of the near impenetrable packaging now I managed stab myself in the left thumb right on the middle knuckle joint. I wasn’t overly concerned at the time, sure it was sore and bled but a plaster soon fixed things up and stopped the bleeding and the knife I’d used was relatively clean and very sharp so initially just put it down to experience and was thankful I didn’t stab anyone else or gouge a bigger hole out of myself.

Over Christmas though my thumb, thumb pad and first two fingers of my hand became more and more stiff and painful with a constant pulse throbbing in the tip of the afflicted thumb. I still wasn’t overly concerned though as could still move everything and my tetanus is up to date following a previous incident with an angry cat. But come the middle of the week it became inevitable that a trip to the doctors was now unavoidable.

He looked at the would and agreed with my own conclusion that the cut although deep was too small to have been stitched, that tetanus wasn’t a concern and that as I could bend the stabbed joint all be it painfully that there was unlikely to be ligament damage. What he did do that I’d not considered was some sensitivity tests in the end of the thumb and at that point I realised that although I could just about feel pressure I’d lost the pain receptors forward of the injury.

The quack has prescribed the usual broad spectrum antibiotics and recommended that I wear a brace to immobilise the thumb as much as possible and go back and see him in a couple of weeks.

I’m hopeless when it comes to taking drugs as I often forget especially when they’re four times a day jobs like the ones he’s given me but I am trying and the open wound has now pretty much healed over with just a little swelling and a bit of peeling skin left but my hand is still aching pretty much constantly and there is not difference in the amount of feeling I have in the tip of my thumb.

So anyway after all that rambling what I’d like to know is if anyone out there has experienced a similar injury and what sort of timeframes you experienced before you healed.

I’ll keep you all posted on how I get on.

TTFN

Mr Bunny Chow

Well if it all goes according to plan I will become a father for a second time a week today so I thought I’d put down some of my thoughts in advance of the big day as may not get a chance for a while once it’s happened.

As I’m sure I’ve mentioned previously we’re both a lot more relaxed about what’s to come this time around, this I’m sure is brought about in part by the lack of snow on the ground, but also the fact that we now know or at least think we know what to expect from a little bundle of trouble when we bring them into our home.

Of course there are some nerves, I know that no two babies are alike and there are risks to Mrs Bunny Chow and Monkey Boy Two involved in the birthing process, I’d be a fool not to have a least a few niggling concerns, but mankind has successfully continued to breed for thousands of generations and I also have total confidence in the amazing Mrs Bunny Chow’s abilities having seen her in action so to speak once before.

Mrs Bunny Chow has been in a frenzy of cleaning, washing and organising since she went on maternity leave and the house whilst not sparkling is certainly looking a lot shinier than it did a few short weeks ago. We’ve moved a lot of stuff into storage and have no idea where it all went before we took it down there as everything is still amazingly cluttered but I guess this is the lot of the family with not much money, a Monkey Boy, a dog and two cats and an obsession with the hoarding of books, kitchenalia and anything else we find along the road.

Mrs Bunny Chow is holding up well, she’s now very obviously very uncomfortable in her massively expanded body and needs my help with little things that historically would have posed no problem to her, but she is amazing and carries on with a fierce determination that I cannot help be proud of her. She is an amazing woman and mother and I often find myself watching her and thinking how did I get so lucky.

Right barf fest over my parents have had to delay their arrival due to the unique qualities of living in a tinpot dictatorship and the vagaries of their national airline (Air Zimbabwe) their original flight which was due to land today has been cancelled due to the fact that they would rather buy new aeroplanes than pay their current staff who’ve understandably gone on strike.

They are now flying with Ethiopian Airlines on Sunday but have to go via Lusaka, Overnighting in Addis Ababa, then Rome before finally arriving at Heathrow smack in the middle of rush hour on Monday thirty six odd hours after leaving their house in Harare. It’s been nearly a year since I last saw them and they last saw their grandson Monkey Boy One (I’m having to distinguish them now)so I can’t wait to see them both.

Anyway I’ve done enough wittering on about feelings and girly stuff for today.

I will keep you all posted and may even put up a few pictures once Monkey Boy Two makes his presence known.

TTFN

Mr Bunny Chow

So I’ve terrified the life out of a lot of you my dear readers, sorry about that, I know that in the cold hard format of print my last post came across as shocking and terrifying, I know that it would have scared the bejesus out of me.

Whilst I believe in honesty, which is why I gave it to you warts and all, it was no intended in any way to put you off having kids yourself. Childbirth is something that all mammalian life goes through and as much as we have been sheltered from the realities it is still a beautiful thing. Mrs Bunny Chow went through living hell bringing Monkey Boy into this world, yet we have bounced back and are about to do it all over again.

I’m going to continue now following some sort of timeline and again going over the highs and lows that surround being a father and to some extent a parent in general. I’m not going to discuss boobs, breast feeding or anything that falls outside of the role of the father other than to say, that we are expected to be of some assistance in this regard, fetching and carrying, drinks, back rubs etc. etc. I will say now for the record I was hopeless at this.

Mrs Bunny Chow breast feeding I could just about cope with, but when friends and others have whipped out their boobs and begun feeding their kids in my presence I did all I could to avoid running from the room screaming. I know it’s natural and all ladies have them and will even admit that I quite like a boob but when people you know whip ’em out I make my excuses and make tea.

Anyway I said I wasn’t going to talk about mystic Mother stuff so I’ll go back to talking about the role of the father as I interpret it. After Monkey Boy was born and Mrs Bunny Chow was settled into the nursing wing with him I was summarily dismissed.

I drove across a cold dark, South London, slower and more carefully than I ever have, I felt overwhelmed, terrified, I was responsible for this cute, squashed, little being and had had the tiniest role in supporting Mrs Bunny Chow bring this tiny fragile little boy into this world. I knew in my heart that I knew nothing about how to care for this little scrap of humanity and that all the books I’d read had left me helplessly unprepared, but I also knew that people have been bringing babies into the world for millennia and had coped in much tougher conditions than we were expecting to and a glimmer of confidence returned.

Ouma and Oupa Bunny Chow were waiting expectantly for me when I arrived home in the early hours of the morning. It was time for that beer I’d been craving for days. I was exhausted but elated, both of my parents got up, Oupa and I had our breakfast beer and I had the happy job of phoning the extended relatives around the world. I had another been and then a third for good luck before crashing into the sleep of the dead for a few hours.

I don’t recall much about the rest of that day but know that I returned to the hospital at about lunchtime, we paid some people to take a couple of photo’s of the Monkey Boy and were allowed to take him and Mrs Bunny Chow at about eight in the evening. There was still snow on the ground and we wrapped Monkey up in a snow suit that made him look like a tiny blue starfish before carrying him in his shiny new car seat out to the car. 

Whilst on this subject, all car seats are stupid and badly designed, I am of the firm belief that they are made this way so that your child will have an early exposure to their fathers colourful vocabulary. I dislike them intensely but I digress. Monkey Boy and Mrs Bunny Chow were installed in the car and I once again crossed South London at a snails pace.

Even in those early days of sleepless nights I remember thinking that it wasn’t as bad as I’d been expecting, you adapt, you cope. Yes babies cry, yes you have to deal with nappies, but they really are not as bad as you think they will be. Once the Meconium is done (remember that first poo mentioned in my last essay) their excrement smells a bit cheesy and resembles a Korma with Almonds. I can’t speak for girls but wow do you have to be careful of little boys hosepipes when they are unhinged though. We had a couple of early accidents more down to our lack of skill than anything at fault with the child, but these were easily resolved with clean sheets a bit of extra laundry and we were good to go again.

Small babies don’t do very much other than cuddle, wail and eat so I won’t go into too many hints and tips, they progress into being little people slowly so you have plenty of practice as they learn, first the can lift their heads, then they can roll over, then they can eat a bit of real food and their nappies become less pleasant, but because you’ve been softened up by the early easy ones you cope without too much difficulty.

There are moments of huge excitement when they give you that first smile, then you get the giggles when they giggle at you, each step along the way is fascinating, every day they do something new to make you fall even deeper in love with them than you would ever have believed possible.

Mrs Bunny Chow has been an incredible inspiration to me throughout it all, she has always been there for him, she has been a figure of calm when he’s screamed blue murder at the indignities of being changed, she’s soldiered on the the middle of the night when I have given in to exhaustion and given me the inspiration to be a better father.

So in conclusion regardless of the difficulties and the scary times, being a parent is the most amazing thing I have ever done or expect to do. Kids make your world and all those things you think you’ll miss out on because of them pale into insignificance in comparison to them, even beer!

TTFN

Mr Bunny Chow.