A walk

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Last weekend we had the most gorgeous picnic and walk around a little lake. It was so sweet watching Michael and Felix race ahead of me, ‘discovering’ engines trapped in the ‘mines’ under the big rocks, and ringing the rescue service to come and save them.

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I’m 37 weeks in this photo, but you can’t see much cos of what I’m wearing.

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It was a truly perfect outing, topped off by plenty of blueberries.

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One day

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These photos were all taken on one very full day at the end of June. We started out bright and early – around 6 – with trains, coffee beans and blocks. Felix had seen a picture of a wooden train track and a wooden-block town in one of his picture books the night before, and as soon as he woke up he demanded we head downstairs and get to work.

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After that we made scones for breakfast.

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and Felix cuddled the baby.
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Then I took him on a trip to the University College, because he’s always asking to visit my work. I didn’t take any photos there but he met some of my colleagues, at his sandwiches in our lunch spot, did some photocopying and stapling and made a little book including some colouring-in pictures that one of my colleagues kindly printed out for him. Then we went home and he coloured them in.

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Afternoon snack time – I finished my baby blanket and Felix made a duplo train track, and bricked up one of his engines in a huge shed.

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He was so proud of himself!

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The digger had to come and rescue the engine.

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Then it was time to cook dinner. Felix made his own ‘chocolate and raspberry cake’ on the kitchen floor. And I bet he went jumping on the trampoline later. So many things…

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Summer holidays

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It’s really hot here at the moment and Felix and I have had the most gorgeous time this week – mostly down at the lake. The past two days I’ve even been swimming myself in the freezing water. And I don’t have a lot of time or energy to write much now but I wanted to write something, before it evaporates. Most evenings I’ve been going for long walks alone along the dusky summer streets (it’s light till 11). It’s my favourite part of the day. I’m pretty active chasing after Felix all day, but there’s something so incredibly lovely about being able to walk at your own pace.

Today in the kitchen, Felix said – ‘The baby is very round, Mummy. Will it be round when it comes out?’

And yesterday, stark naked astride his bicycle in our lounge-room, he said: ‘Some people speak Norwegian. Mummy speaks English. Daddy speaks German. But I only speak… nonsense!’ Which, given the exuberant mood he’s been in for the past two weeks, is about right.

Though today he offered to put sunscreen on my back for me. ‘I may not be as fast as you,’ he said, ‘but I’m very strong.’ That’s a quote from Thomas the Tank Engine, but incredibly sweet. ‘Do you ever run out of steam, Mummy? What happens if you run out of steam at the shops? I could pull you.’

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Felix’s summer (three and a half)

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My darling boy,

I am so very much enjoying you at the moment. This week has been so special – we have been to the beach every day, meeting up with friends for a couple of hours most days, and generally enjoying the summer and each other.

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Felix got me a tray of wooden food from his kitchen this morning, and then very earnestly went and fetched two tiny glasses of water for us to share.

One of the things I am most enjoying at the moment is his developing sense of initiative – rather than waiting or demanding that I do things he will more often than not quietly sort them out himself. Pull chair to trampoline, climb up. Pull chair to kitchen sink, pour a glass of water. He likes to demand that we build train tracks for him but these days I rarely comply – it is so much more fun to see what he comes up with himself, and he is more than capable.

Today when he woke at 6.30 I got him some milk and sultanas and propped him in front of a play-list of Thomas and Friends while I napped for another hour on the sofa. (I am incredibly good at this at the moment.) Then he turned off the computer and built himself a train-track (I assisted with the long bridge) and entertained himself beautifully for ages. He turned a wooded block into a ‘platform’, and sat the passengers on it while they waited for the train. I looked over at one point and he was squatting on the ground, balancing goggly eyes on his toes (he just adores goggly eyes), eating pita bread and surveying his trains.

After some trampoline hopping outside I bundled him into the car and we drove to the Swedish coastal town of Stromstad for some cake and a walk. He decided he wanted to dangle his feet in the water and was so disappointed by the fact that wherever he sat they wouldn’t reach, so I directed him to the fountain and he tried it there.

summer2On the way back to the car I bought him a gigantic inflatable fish from the toyshop – his friend Linnea had been floating around on an inflatable crocodile the day before, and I thought it might be a good idea. He was pretty tired by the time we drove back home but didn’t sleep a wink because he was so excited about his fish.

At home we ate lunch and I had another short Thomas the Tank Engine enabled nap on the sofa.

Around 3 we went back to our local beach with some of our best friends, and swam, and floated on the fish, and threw stones, and filled holes with water, and ran up and down the beach completely naked (him not me).summer4

We stopped at our favourite pizza place on the way home for dinner. All in all, the most perfect summer holiday day imaginable.

When I asked him what his favourite thing about the day was when I was putting him to bed, he said – ‘playing with Mummy’.

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Berlin again

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We had a lovely time in Berlin despite the challenges of shepherding (me) and carrying (Michael) a three year old around Berlin in the absence of a stroller. Felix was a big fan of the pizza.

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And the dinosaurs and other curiosities at the Natural History Museum.

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We visited the real fish again too. Felix perched in Michael’s arms is certainly a recurring image.

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There are plenty of playgrounds and play-cafes in Berlin, including this play-cafe which provided dilapidated tricycles for small children.

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But the biggest hit of all was the Technology Museum, specifically, the trains.

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When we finally reached a steam engine you could actually climb inside, Felix ‘drove’ it furiously for more than half an hour.

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Chuff chuff chuff….

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