So... I guess I'm resorting to some bullet points before I will write something eloquent again (which might not be before September).
- Celebrating the toddler's 3rd birthday at the beach. It was gorgeous weather and there were enough adults present that there was always someone to run after the toddler or cuddle with the baby, so mommy had a great relaxing day too.
- Our three-week vacation in Holland. Better weather than predicted, bike fun with the kids and seeing the toddler fall in love with the sea.
- Meeting fellow blogger Valery
- Starting the baby on solids - and especially being able to go to the market and buy all the great summer fruits and veggies and turning them into baby food! So far he loves carrots, green beans, zucchini, peach, nectarine and apricots.
- Switching from breast to bottle. After initial refusal (which made me a bit nervous, because he had taken the bottle occasionally before without problems and now that I wanted to start the switch he didn't want to anymore - but it only lasted a few days). Still nursing mornings and evenings but very briefly. Seems the baby's now getting frustrated with how much effort it takes to get something out of the breast, while the bottle is quickly gulped down.
- Apart from the teething episodes (see below), the baby is slowly starting to sleep longer stretches at night.
- My sister and her family arriving in the area (and staying for a few weeks).
Edit: the switching from breast to bottle should actually be under its own header called 'bittersweet'. The switch is complete now. I'm happy it wasn't such a struggle as with our first one, but still have very mixed emotions about being done with it.
- Baby's tooth #1 and #2 breaking through. Lots of horrible screaming, especially at night. And I'm thinking #3 is on its way too, because he's still very fussy and refused to eat his veggies two days in a row.
- Toddler deciding a good way to get his mom's attention is to start wetting his pants again... (at the sitter's he is completely dry, all the time). I've started with reducing time he can watch videos on my phone, but I think I need to take more drastic measures - taking away his pacifier (yes, he still has one, ugh) might work better.
- Toddler being wide awake at 6:30 am, tugging at my arm and telling me to get up because it's light outside, after a night where the baby would have woken me up at least three times.
- General sleep deprivation - I just don't want to be this tired anymore.
While most of the French have now gone on summer holidays, we're staying here until the 21st, when we will go camping for ten days near the Mediterranean (giving the toddler some more sea/beach time). My sister will be in the area until the 17th. She has done a home-exchange with people in the area and that house has a pool, which is great. I'm a little nervous about the camping, with the baby still not sleeping through the night (how on earth am I going to give him a warm bottle in the middle of the night...? will the kids be able to take an afternoon nap in a tent? etc) but also looking forward to some real family time again.
I have this idea about doing a blog post series about cultural differences. Hope to start that sooner than later, but I won't promise anything...