Wednesday, 31 December 2008

New Year's Eve

Arranged to meet all the Fuengi crowd at a bar in Mummy's old neighbourhood. It was a bit smoky and - as I was asleep, it wasn't too cold, and the adults were sat by the door - I was left out in the doorway in my pram to fend for myself. Fine by me, but eventually I woke up and demanded attention. Just then Daddy arrived back from work (they all get to leave early on New Year's Eve at his office) so we went inside. Had to pop out to a friend's van for a quick feed. Daddy is a bit paranoid about me & smoke so he soon took me out again and we had a little walk round and round the square until I fell asleep and was dumped on the doorstep again.

We left soon after that to a different bar for a quickie before we had to head off so I could get some decent kip at home.

Lately Mummy, Daddy, Abuelo, Abuela & Bisa have all spent New Year's Eve with Abuela's brother & family in Pozuelo and this year was no exception though Tita & co didn't come this time as it was Tito's parent's turn this year. Abuela brought the lamb, we brought some red cabbage, and the hosts put up the rest. Then we (well, not me) all eat a grape (a Spanish tradition for good luck) with every one of the last 12 chimes of the year...

Tuesday, 30 December 2008

Visit to the doctor

Another midnight feed - definitely something happening here.

Had plenty of visitors for lunch - Tito & the girls, Abuelo & Abuela and Bisa. Today was Tita's birthday, and she came round after work to join us for coffee and a very chocolaty cake. When Daddy got home from work it was present-giving time and then we had to rush off to my doctor's appointment - Mummy and Daddy had decided my midnight awakenings, change of feeding patterns, and extra crying needed to be looked at. Also we can check my weight properly - using the home scales (adult+baby - adult weight) is a bit inexact.

Indeed I am underweight (4850 g, 62 cm) but we'll wait and see what happens on my "official" appointment next month. The latest changes are probably due to my gums being a bit inflamed - teeth not coming out just yet, but apparently gums can flare up occasionally ahead of time. Also I may be going through a growing spurt and by eating more often I stimulate Mummy into producing more milk.

Rush, rush, rush. Off down Fuencarral road to Miguel's (Mummy's hairdresser) house for a quick snip. Mummy already looked smashing, but now she's even better!

From there we headed off to Mummy's old neighbourhood for another birthday at one of the good local restaurants. Not really a late night as tomorrow is still a work day for Daddy.

Monday, 29 December 2008

Eating habits

Eating habits are really changing. Woke up again at 3am, really hungry. Doing a lot more crying than usual as well.

Sunday, 28 December 2008

Big boy pram

Today is Dia de los Santos Inocentes (the Massacre of the Innocents), the Spanish - and a bit morbid - version of April Fool's (inocente also meaning gullible in Spanish), but we didn't do any pranks, nor had any performed on us. We think.

I was completely serious when I woke up at 4am crying. As I'd eaten so little on my last feed Daddy tried with the bottle again, but no way Jose. Luckily just then Mummy arrived and I could have a proper midnight snack. Tried the bottle a few more times during the day but no cigar.

Today we decided I was big enough to be upgraded, and we twisted and folded the pram into wonderful new shapes. No more lie-flat pram for me, I now stroll round the town in a sitting-up pushchair. That way I can see the world and the world can see me. As it's a bit cold and windy I'm facing Mummy instead of forwards for the time being.

Went to visit Abuelo and Abuela, and Bisa was there - she'll be staying with them for a few months. She hadn't seen me for ages and was really pleased to see me again.

Oh, and my poohing seems to be back to normal. At least once, if not more, per day.

Saturday, 27 December 2008

Back to Madrid

Nasty weather today in the South of Spain. We said we might meet up with some friends but with this weather nobody bothered. Just lazed about the house and finished the packing. Then we said our goodbyes and caught the train to Madrid. A week goes so fast!

No sooner had we got back that Mummy was off to a birthday, leaving me in charge of Daddy. We had a go at bottle feeding but I wasn't very keen at all. We must have only managed about 40ml before bedtime. I prefer the real thing, though last time with Abuela wasn't too bad.

Friday, 26 December 2008

Boxing Day

Anther late morning walk down the promenade today, this time in the opposite direction to the castle. We were going to hook up later with Grandpa for a seaside lunch and he assumed we were going to go to our usual, but lo and behold, as we were going in the opposite direction, we decided on a completely different one. So obviously he didn't find us, and as he doesn't have a mobile and continued searching instead of going home it was quite a mission (undertaken by Oma) to track him down.

Dinner was at our favourite pizzeria (2 restaurants in one day, however are we going to finish off all the Christmas lamb!?) but before that we wanted to show me off at the Forum bar, but it was closed over Christmas so a few people missed out on seeing me.

Oh, and my belly button is back to normal. Just a bodily hiccup I guess.

Thursday, 25 December 2008

Christmas Day

Horrah, Father Christmas arrived! Not that I know who he is, or what a present it, or anything, but everybody seems very excited. Actually Father Christmas didn't come here as we had plenty with all the presents we made each other. The biggies: Grandpa got a waterproof case for his camera (coincidently the same as Mummy & Daddy's, so it may be borrowed sometime in the future), Oma got some speakers for her iPod, Mummy & Daddy got the digital SLR they have been taking photos with all week (so no major surprise there). The big surprise (well, not for us as we already knew) was that Auntie unveiled her new driving licence. Come on Daddy, hurry up with yours!

After all the excitement we had a long walk with Oma down to the Fuengi castle. It was a lovely and bright afternoon and we saw the new bridge Daddy hadn't seen, and the end of the promenade which even Oma hadn't seen.

We also hooked up with the same friends from a few days ago for a short evening walk and picked up a bath tub for me to leave at Grandpa & Oma's.

A bit of change in the feeding department: I get bored of the same tit for seconds on end so I want to change various times during feeding, not just when I empty one.

Wednesday, 24 December 2008

Christmas Eve

My feeding patterns have changed a bit - I am doing feeds every 3-3.5h instead of every 4. It's also been a few days since I had a poo, so after a few attempts with the cotton bud & olive oil we tried feeding me a few drops of orange (well, mandarin) juice diluted with water. In under 5 minutes we had a positive result!

A few more changes... Today my belly button popped out for no apparent reason. Also, it looks like I'll soon be able to turn, so Mummy & Daddy are being more careful about where they plonk me unsupervised. Also, Daddy puts me in front of the mirror quite often to see if I "get it". Get what?
Finished the present wrapping. Tomorrow it's unwrapping time!

After the Christmas dinner Mummy & Daddy went out with Auntie for a few drinks. Mummy hasn't been out in a proper bar for months, she's so excited!

Tuesday, 23 December 2008

Last Christmas shopping

Started the day finishing the Christmas shopping. The main target was Auntie, and we went to every clothes shop in Fuengi trying to find a "plain black cardigan". It turns out there is no such thing this season so in the end we had to call her to see if she had seen one herself (she was at the shopping mall at the time). She couldn't find one either, so she got herself a different garment for us to give to her. During our criss-crossing of Fuengi centre we picked up a nice frame (a present from me to Grandpa & Oma) and some port & veg we need for the Christmas dinner.

Later, at home while I had a feed, Daddy went hunting for a pair of walkie talkies for me, but came back empty handed. Too expensive, not enough choice, and not really necessary was the conclusion. Then we headed off with Auntie to print out a photo of me (to go with the frame) and to the supermarket to stock up on wine and other essentials. Afterwards, without Auntie, we got her another little present from me (a small bag) and Mummy and Daddy got me a thick jacket to keep me warm as they are planning on changing the pram to chair mode soon so I can see the world.

Finished the day with a quick drink in the Plaza bar and then got a bit of the wrapping done.

Monday, 22 December 2008

El Torcal

Woke up to quite a ruckus downstairs: a youngish guy had sat in one of the doorways on the other side of the road and died overnight, a suspected overdose. The police were there and had covered him with a blanket, and shortly after his mummy came and burst into hysterics. A sad start to the day.

Today the plan was to go to see the rock formations at El Torcal, near Antequera. As it would be quite cold, but too hot for my snow suit, we decided I'd stay in pyjamas as an extra layer and put my day clothes on top. In the event I ended up in pyjamas all day. So we got the car and drifter towards Antequera on small mountain roads and on the way there saw another accident - this time a local had crashed his moped and lay in the ditch, his neck at a nasty angle. There were already some people there so we didn't stop.

Stopped for a lovely lunch at a great venta outside Antequera and then drove on to El Torcal. The weather was great, with just a light wind. As it was lateish by now we took the short (45 minutes) path round the rock formations (a crazy limestone karst landscape). The light was great for a few nice snaps which we promptly took. Last time Mummy & Daddy came it was all misty and dark and freezing cold.

When we got back I spent most of the evening crying, but calmed down after a relaxing bath (in which I had a little pee).

Sunday, 21 December 2008

Day with Fuengi friends

Arranged a lunch visit at a friend's house today. There was a size 1 baby chair in the car - facing forwards (I still use size 0, facing backwards), but as we were just going for a short ride in the town Mummy and Daddy decided to let me be a big boy for the day.

There was quite a crowd of us, even more after lunch when some more friends turned up to play Trivial Pursuits. I was completely overstimulated with all the noise, and actually wanted to get some kip, so I protested a fair bit until Daddy took me to a quiet(ish) corner. He claims that is why the boys lost the game.

Apart from the car chair I'm doing more big boy stuff. Tried sitting in a proper sitting-up pram and liked it. I'm also showing more signs of grabbing, or at least I'm using my hands more. And I'm beginning to keep my dummy in for a bit longer.

Saturday, 20 December 2008

Baby items

As I hold my neck pretty well, today we decided to put me in the pouch facing forwards for the first time. It's much better as I love looking at the world. As our room is pretty far away from the lounge we went shopping for some walkie-talkies. No real luck, but a nice walk anyways. After a bit facing forwards I had seen enough sights and wanted to go to sleep, so I started fidgeting. Daddy got the message and turned me round; I fell asleep almost immediately.

We travel light, and more so if we can borrow baby items from friends. In the evening we arranged to meet some friends with toddlers who brought a hammock and a car seat they no longer used. The hammock is great, it has music, mirrors, rotating toys, and even a vibration mode! We then went out for a quick drink with these and more friends to celebrate our arrival.

Friday, 19 December 2008

Down to Fuengi

After yesterday Daddy woke up a tad late and missed his bus to work, so he decided to work from home. We left him to it and went to Abuelo & Abuela's so Mummy could leave me there and head off to her work's cocktail lunch. Got bottle fed by Abuela and then Mummy got back and we all went to the train station. There we met Daddy and got on the high speed train down to Malaga. I was a very good boy all the way, I enjoy all the lights and the flickering TV.

From Malaga we caught the local train to Fuengirola and finally arrived at Grandpa & Oma's. They were amazed at the changes in me in the last couple of months. My how I have grown! The photos don't really show the whole picture.

Here I have a travel cot which looks really big, and no musical teddy bear or night lights but I am pretty adaptable and got to sleep no problem.

Thursday, 18 December 2008

Day with Mummy

Went to the mountain shops down at the Rastro to get a present for Tita's birthday. Mission completed but we didn't have any time to spare to ask about snowshoes or crampons. We then had to pick up my post - some paper liners for the eco-nappies. These are different from the last ones, they come in a roll rather than a box. Better, more compact.

Daddy had his departmental Christmas lunch today so he didn't get back at the usual time. In fact is was quite a bash and he didn't get back until gone 3am so Mummy bathed me alone.

Wednesday, 17 December 2008

Coffee with ex-workmate

Not much today - a morning walk and then a coffee with one of Mummy's ex-workmates. Oh, and we got the microwave back and fixed and dropped off at home, what service! Mummy and Daddy don't use it much, just for heating milk and reheating food, but they really missed it when it wasn't there.

Tuesday, 16 December 2008

Daddy is a failure

Daddy was working from home today as it was his big day - the driving exam. He left late morning in high spirits. While he was gone Tito dropped Primita off for a last day of babysitting (Abuelo and Abuela will be back soon, plus Primita starts nursery next month). Waited around for Daddy for ages and finally got a call - he failed. Something about being in the wrong lane in a two-way street. Excuses, excuses. Anyways, he got back and Tito also arrived to pick up Primita so we all had lunch together to celebrate the ignominous failure.

In the afternoon we dropped off the broken microwave at the repair shop where a friend works and then headed off to Decathlon to check out snowshoes and crampons - Mummy and Daddy are unsure which to ask Father Christmas for (well, the Three Wise Men really). Even though we went there on a weekday they couldn't find anybody that seemed very competent willing to give us some time, so they are still undecided. I think they should try a small shop to get proper heartfelt advice. Dropped the car off at Abuelo & Abuela's where we had dinner before heading back home.

Monday, 15 December 2008

Babysitting Primita again

Tito brought Primita over again so Mummy could have another go at being supermum. This time we decided not to be as good as last time, so that Mummy could prove herself under stress. Primita started with a good bout of wailing. She was so loud in fact that she scared me, so I started crying as well. I'm really proud of us - we kept it up, on and off, all morning.

Daddy arrived before Tito for his last lesson before his exam tomorrow, and while he was away Mummy and me walked Tito and Primita to the station. Daddy seems pretty relaxed and confident about tomorrow, fingers crossed!

Sunday, 14 December 2008

Goodbye to London friends

After a nice breakfast a the Cafe Comercial (where left-wing writers and intelectuals used to gather clandestinely and talk about very important issues) we walked down Fuencarral with our London friends and I began to feel a bit peckish, so we went into the Mercado de Fuencarral (an iconic shopping centre which was recently in the news as the owner wanted to sell it but in the end decided against it) for a quick feed.

Stopped off at an open-air tapa fair for a quick bite and glass of cider and then went to investigate a couple of addresses we had of smoke-free tapa bars in the centre. One looked like a horrible tourist trap, but the other looked much better, with a fair amount of Spanish OAPs (always a good indicator of food quality) where we stopped for a quick lunch.

Then we said goodbye to our friends, who had an early flight back and headed home. Mummy and Daddy saw another good film, Buddha Collapsed out of Shame while I had a snooze.

Saturday, 13 December 2008


Met up with our London friends for breakfast at a lovely new French place that has just opened on Fuencarral. Today it rained all day so we spent the whole time at home chatting, admiring me, and playing Sweaty Betty (a card game). Had another visit from a friend from the usual crowd who stayed for dinner, and then Daddy took our London friends out for a quick nightcap (or six) round the bars of MalasaƱa.

Friday, 12 December 2008

London friends arrive

Went to Abuelo & Abuela's quickly this morning to steal Abuela's car for the weekend. Not much else in the daytime - Mummy & Daddy watched a French comedy in the evening, their first decent film for ages. Then we waited around for the arrival of some friends from London who are over to visit for the weekend to see me. They arrived so late I was already in bed. I guess I'll see them tomorrow.

Thursday, 11 December 2008

Christmas preparations

Daddy home early again, this time with his Christmas hamper (a typical Spanish tradition in most jobs) - a bottle of whiskey (which he doesn't really drink), a few bottles of wine (which he definitely does), a whole leg of serrano ham, and various other goodies. This got us right into the Christmas spirit so we got round to writing out the cards and sending them.

Wednesday, 10 December 2008

Midnight snack

Felt quite peckish at 3:30 for the first time in a long time, so I woke up and asked Mummy to feed me. Her back is OK now, though she's afraid to put it out again. Mummy & Daddy have swaped back to their usual positions in bed now - Mummy next to the cot as she can now pick me up again.

Daddy came home early again for his driving lessons. The Christmas cards we had had printed (not enough of them it turns out) finally arrived so we could all have a look at them together. They are great, thanks to me being on the cover. Can't wait to send them...

Tuesday, 9 December 2008

3 months old today

Yup, already a quarter of a year old. My gosh how time flies.

Primita came over to visit today as Tita is back at work and today is one of those days Tito can't work from home (Abuelo & Abuela have gone for a short break to the Canaries in search of some winter sun so they can't look after her). Had a great time, and we all learned I'm quite a flirt. I did loads of smiling, glad to have another baby around. We both had lunch at the same time, me on the breast and Primita on solids & bottle - Mummy is so clever, a supermum!

Daddy came home early as he has early driving lessons in the build-up to his exam next week. All he needs is to do a couple more hours teleworking each time to catch up. Oh, and today he got me some vouchers for the nursery (a special deal at work).

A few changes today: I had a go with a new dummy today which Mummy reckons I like more as I let it slip out less, and Daddy discovered how the hammock works and managed to change my normal position to something a bit more upright. Lately I have taken to dancing sevillanas (waving my hands about) while eating. Also, I am holding my head up pretty well, though I no longer bend so much when Mummy or Daddy burp me - I think it's because I don't enjoy it as much as before as it's no longer so necessary.

Monday, 8 December 2008

Smoke-free bar

National holiday again today. Real shame we couldn't go to Caceres or somewhere nice because of the rain and Mummy's back. She is nearly better but still not up for a long drive. Also it's Mummy's saint's day. Daddy is a pagan and and needed to be reminded, but she got plenty of congratulation phone calls from the rest of the family.

More rain. We waited for a gap and went to visit a smoke-free tapas bar and restaurant not too far from home. Spain is a smoker's country, so smoke-free bars are few and far between. This place was quite nice, so we'll probably come here more often.

Back home Mummy and Daddy dozed for a bit on the sofa while watching a few Planet Earth episodes.

Sunday, 7 December 2008


Lunch with Abuelo and Abuela - not much else to do in the drizzle. Plus they are leaving to the Canaries soon and won't see me for days. We also phoned Decathlon as Mummy and Daddy wanted to do some shopping there but we were told it was packed (nothing like Christmas and rain to get people into the malls and superstores) and if we really wanted a chat with a knowledgeable attendant we should come during the week. Oh, and back home Daddy & Mummy got the shearers out and gave me a number one. I was a very good boy as I knew it was for my own good and I now look really handsome with my new tidy haircut.

Saturday, 6 December 2008

Dinner visit

Rainy horrible day, and apparently a large portion of Spain has the same weather, so it's not so bad we couldn't go anywhere because of Mummy's back. Also it's a national holiday so most of the shops are shut, though that doesn't matter either as we have done most of our Christmas shopping. Had a couple of friends round for dinner and then watched a film.

Friday, 5 December 2008

Nice breakfast place

Mummy and I spent the morning with a friend of Mummy's having breakfast at a lovely new place they just opened on Fuencarral. Then we went to her house and were joined by a couple more friends. I was ever so well behaved and spent the whole morning being cute. We had a late lunch and waited for Daddy to come back - he had a Christmas lunch with some workmates and had then gone bowling.

Thursday, 4 December 2008

Mummy & Daddy go to the theatre

Mummy had a physiotherapist come over for a massage for her back. In the end he ended up doing acupuncture as well, a first for her. I don't think she was very impressed though. I woke up during the proceedings, and as Mummy was lying down full of needles he picked me up and used his aura to stop me crying. Ommm.

Abuela came over late afternoon to check up on Mummy and stayed babysitting as Mummy and Daddy went off gallivanting round to see a play at a nearby theatre - a comedy version of The 39 Steps which they really enjoyed (apart from the annoying heckler). While they were having fun I got bottle fed and Abuelo came arrived to cook the meal for when Mummy & Daddy got back.

Wednesday, 3 December 2008

Flat visit

More than 9h sleep last night! Another record!

Mummy is OKish today, but I think she got overexcited and didn't do her back any favours, so today she may have ended up a bit worse than how she started. Abuela was around today again to help, and Abuelo was over for a lunch and jab again. Then Abuela left us to our own devices as she had a dance lesson. We had a go with the gauzes and this time, with printed instructions, the results were great. The gauzes are less bulky than the eco-nappies, plus they dry a lot faster after washing.

Nearly changed house today, saw a beautiful 2-bedroom flat in Chueca with a huge lounge, near where we are living currently but even more in the centre. Chueca is in fact the gay centre of Madrid, and is full of lovely shops and cafes and cool places and there is always something going on. Mummy and Daddy were about to wire a transfer to the flat agency when we had a proper think and came to the conclusion that our current area was much better for babies and little boys: Chueca has pretty narrow streets and pavements, hardly any squares, no gardens or play areas, and probably not many nurseries or schools. So with a heavy heart and tears in our eyes (I spent most of the evening crying), but certain we had made the right choice, we turned it down. At least I got a nice walk out of it - first time out of the house for 4 days.

Tuesday, 2 December 2008

Gauze attempt

Abuela came home early to look after Mummy, she is quite better today so Daddy can show his face at the office.

The missing items from the eco-nappy people arrived today, together with a couple of pins for the gauze (had some gauzes in the eco-nappy pack) - the idea is to fond the gauze a certain way and wrap it round me and fasten it with one of the pins, extra absorbent pads optional. All pretty low-tech stuff (though the fastening pin is pretty funky and modern) much like what my great-grandmothers had to put up with. Our first attempts were a bit of a disaster so we went back to the normal eco-nappies.

Abuelo came by for lunch and also gave Mummy a jab on her bottom (he is a doctor after all). We have to be a bit careful with what medicines she takes as it mustn't end up affecting me via the milk - one of the few disadvantages of breast milk over formula.

Oh, and Daddy got the news today that he will sit his practical driving exam on the 16th. Maybe Father Christmas will bring him a driving licence this year.

Monday, 1 December 2008

Daddy works from home

Mummy is only slightly better today so Daddy phoned work to say he'd do teleworking from home today. Ain't technology wonderful?

Oma came back from Holland this evening. Tried to call her but she and Grandpa weren't at home.