Op shopping is like treasure hunting. You never know what wonderful thing you might find.
Once I found this scarf.
Someone might have used it and loved it. Or maybe they didn't realise how wonderful it was and packed it away in a cupboard. Either way it was given to a charity and we found it in their shop.
We love it!
It floats magically and ripples as it falls gracefully from the sky.
It's so soft and smooth as it lands gently on your face and stokes your skin. Playing with this $2 scarf makes this baby so happy!
A set of beautiful coloured play silks like these is still on my wish list. They look so beautiful to touch and so versatile to play with. For now we are making the most of this recycled treasure!
There he is!
If you've got some time to go treasure hunting in Dubbo here's a list of op shops in order of my personal preference:
We might bump into each other on a Saturday morning among the bric-a-brac. Happy hunting!
Fox is 7 months old already! When I started writing this post he was only 6 months old. Slow down time!
We're getting to know his personality more and more. He is still a sweetheart. He loves people and thrives on one-to-one attention. It is so easy to make him laugh and we all have so much fun with him. As he learns to express his likes and dislikes we're discovering that he has just as strong a personality as Bear! (Which makes perfect sense considering his genetic loading!) He shrieks and growls so forcefully if something displeases him that we can't help but laugh!
Fox is rolling well from back to tummy but has trouble getting from tummy to back because he sticks his elbows out. He is still pretty stationary and doesn't seem to be motivated to get moving just yet.
It's easy to find work for him at the moment. He is fascinated by everything! I have a mat and a basket of things just for him at each end of the house. I lie him on the mat and hand him an item from his basket. He studies it, shakes it, sucks on it, sings to it... until I hand him the next item. I choose things for him that are beautiful, made of a variety of (mostly) natural materials. Different shapes, sizes, textures, weights, sounds.
When Bear is working inside Fox joins in and they chat while they work.
Fox practices sitting up while I'm sorting laundry or folding nappies. He is getting better at sitting unsupported and can sit for about a minute if he has something fun to play with.
I love that he is still so dependent on me. I love that he still needs me to snuggle with him every few hours so that he can feed. I love being able to hold him in my arms. I love his quiet gentle personality. I love that he enjoys our sleepy cuddles as much as I do. I love his easy laugh. I love that he is most entertained by the attention of his family. He's our favourite Fox.
Working in the kitchen with Bear used to be difficult.'
We didn't have the equipment Bear needed and the kitchen wasn't very Bear friendly.
Things have changed recently. I have spent some time rearranging things to suit him better. Tom and I have also made a big effort to include him in our work in the kitchen. At 2 years old there a lots of things he can do very effectively. He can be patient and is good at following directions. He is also starting to work toward specific goals. For example now he feeds the cats; he used to scoop biscuits.
This is Bear's area in the pantry. He uses the step stool to reach the benches and is able to get it out and move it around himself. The lowest shelf in the pantry is for his things - some toddler friendly kitchen tools and his cleaning supplies. The spray bottle has a small amount of water in it and although it is adult size he is able to use it comfortably. Spraying and wiping the benches is one of his favourite activities in the kitchen.
We still have a baby gate in place so Bear only has access to the kitchen in the company of Tom or myself.
There is very little that we do in the kitchen now that Bear is not welcome to join. It has been a real joy for us all. Tom and I appreciate Bear's enthusiasm when doing chores that are mundane for us. We don't mind if they take twice as long because it's a pleasure working with Bear; thoroughly engaged, brimming with pride, and becoming more effective every day
Making purees for Fox is an almost daily ritual that Bear volunteers for. He is able to chop, assemble the blender, load the blender, press the button (that's the best part!), and fill the freezer trays. (I've been using this baby food recipe book - it makes moosh much more inspiring)
Since I showed Bear how to make his own toast I am absolutely not allowed to make it for him! I didn't think he'd have the patience to wait for the toast to pop - but he can wait very well. I didn't think he'd have the restraint to leave the setting on "1" - but he does. I thought he'd touch the hot parts - but he doesn't. Having this independence is obviously very special for him. He is so motivated by it that he is prepared to follow such precise instructions and suppress those temptations that usually win him over. I thought my expertly spread toast tasted better - it definitely doesn't!
The juice he squeezes for himself tastes pretty good as well!
There are things he gets "stuck" on. Like the tray of cutlery. He's never ready to close the drawer after putting away the clean cutlery. He wants to sit with the tray and work for longer. He makes patterns. Or sets the table. Or pretends to cut and eat food. Spraying and wiping the bench is another one that holds onto him. I leave him to it.
Fox is always close by to chat and sing with us as we're working. I have a basket of kitchen items that I can pass to him: a spatula, a wooden spoon, a spice tin, a bamboo napkin ring... So Fox has started working in the kitchen too.
I haven't mentioned toilet learning for a while because we hit two major obstacles:
But apparently Bear was ready to use the potty!
I think Tom was getting more impatient with nappies than I was. He was definitely more optimistic. He put a potty in the playroom and a potty in the living room. He took Bear's nappy off and gave him some very straight forward motivation - "If you do a wee or a poo on the potty I will give you an ice-cream".
That was all it took. No tantrums. No accidents. Bear has been weeing on the potty for 2 weeks now. Without any prompting he will leave anything he's playing with, do a wee on the potty, then go back to his things without a fuss. Occasionally he will ask for a sticker or some blueberries which we offered at the beginning as rewards. Usually he just gets on with things.
We've just started letting him sleep with no nappy and a potty beside his bed. So far so good. He is just definitely ready now - 6 months ago he definitely wasn't.
Our previous arrangement was too complicated so we've simplified things:
At the moment we have not tackled pulling undies on and off, wiping bottom, washing hands, using a real toilet... I am happy to let him consolidate one skill at a time. I wasn't even ready to teach him this skill - thank goodness he didn't need me to teach him at all!
I really find it hard to keep up with these children! Did I mention Fox is rolling all over the floor now too? Yikes! It's a wild ride!
My name is Vicky I am wife to Ranger and mum to two boys - Bear (2) and Fox (8 months). Somehow I stumbled across Montessori and now my goal is to raise and educate my children with a Montessori philosophy in country NSW Australia.