Special moment of the day

Some people may think I’m crazy but I wake Ava every day from her nap at 13.30. I did the same with Zoe and fortunately both girls have always woken up cheerful (even if they’re absolutely dead asleep). I do feel a bit cruel but I like them to go to sleep at 7pm and wake at 7am and a 2 hour nap in the daytime seems to ensure that happens. Anyway, back to the whole point.

So, at 13.30 I go into her dark room and open the curtains, there is a wooden blind as well that I close when she sleeps, so the room isn’t bright when I open the curtains. She usually sits up after a few moments, grabs her taglet, gives me a sleepy smile and I pick her up out of her cot. There’s the most awesome rocker-glider feeding chair with a rocking-gliding footstool in her room and I cuddle with her for a few minutes in the chair. She holds on tight and snuggles into me and it’s just such an awesome few minutes. I just love, love, love those few minutes.

I generally give Ava her bottle and put her into bed in the evenings. We sit in the chair while I give her her bottle (neither of my kids have ever held their own bottles, they are too busy holding their taglets). After her bottle is finished all I want to do is keep her cuddled in my arms but I resist the temptation and stand up almost straight away and put her into her cot and walk out the room. I’m very glad that both girls fall asleep so easily and without any help from me but I’ll keep doing our afternoon cuddling as long as I can as in no time it’ll be a thing of the past. Ava is far more cuddly than Zoe ever was/is so hopefully we’ll still be cuddling for a very long time. Zoe will cuddle but you generally have to ask for a hug and she likes her own space. When she had her cough last week, she woke up just after 5am one morning as she’d coughed so much and so came to our room to say hi. I got up and went for a run but she got into bed with Chris. When I got back from my run, Zoe wasn’t there anymore. Chris said after a little while she’d got up and said that she was going to go and sleep a bit more in her own bed. Even if you ask her if you can lie with her a bit in her bed, she’ll tell you no thank you.

One last thing. Never ever underestimate the power of a sticker/reward chart. They are a powerful weapon in your discipline armoury (IMHO). We’d had a few issues with Zoe having to be told to greet people (hello, goodbye,etc.) and please and thank you and other general good manners can always do with a bit of brushing up. I brought out her magnetic reward chart with the reward for 7 stickers being a minute little chocolate in the Hello Kitty advent calender that Chris bought at Spar. I’d already bought the girls Advent calenders and we’ve got an advent train as well. Being used as a reward instead is working out brilliantly. Nevermind the fact that we have 2 children and he bought only 1 Hello Kitty advent calender. Only a dad does something like that I tell you. They were doing numbers at school as well so she had lots of fun looking for the correct numbers on the calender. I think we’re only up to #6 and the change is unbelievable. I know I’ve said it before but rewarding the good and ignoring the bad (if and when you can) seems to be the way to go with Zoe.

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