It was actually in my last ordinary moments post back in August that I mentioned how we had had some really exciting news in that we'd sold our house and had an offer accepted on a house down in Lincolnshire. Since then, all the important house sale conveyancing business has been ticking along in the background and life here has felt a little in limbo for a couple of months now. As a family we are creatures of habit and thrive on routine and since we got back from holiday to Rhodes in September we have had a complete change to our weekly family routine...
For the past 2 and a half years, LO has gone to nursery two days a week, on Tuesday and a Thursday. He started in May 2014 at 10 months old as I had to return to work for a term full time as a primary school teacher. I handed my notice in at the end of the summer and while I became a SAHM and looked after LO at home for most of the week, he kept on with those two days at nursery and has done ever since. Before we went on holiday, and knowing that we would be moving soon anyway, we made the decision to enrol Little L at the same nursery, just for one day a week on a Thursday.
I must admit I found it an extremely hard decision to make to send him. I cried in front of all the staff when I dropped him off on his first full day and sobbed the whole way home in my car. I felt like I'd lost a part of me I missed him that much, but I knew it was the right thing to do for both of us. He just seemed so young at 8 and a half months, and it also felt strange sending him when I don't actually go out to work as such. But actually, making that decision to send him to nursery came down to so much more than that- not only was it about Little L being around other babies, it was about introducing structure and routine for him, being less dependent on me while also allowing me to have some much needed time where I could catch my breath- to have some time one day a week where I could do my jobs, keep on top of household jobs and to feel like myself.
Something we have found really hard is how difficult it's been to establish any sort of structure or routine to Little L's day. Sleep has been all over the place since he was born, breastfeeding has meant that I've been the only one who can settle him and unlike his older brother who adored a good nap or two, he has only ever really napped in the car or in the pram on a walk. I found that with no set nap, the days were long, unpredictable and exhausting, leaving me with little energy to conquer the long and often arduous evening routine- dinner, bath times and then both bed times, followed by a night of unbroken sleep, getting up randomly through the night to march up and down the creaky stairs to and from the nursery on the top floor.
The new nursery routine really has made such a difference though. Before, I was feeling drained, exhausted and in all honesty, I felt like I wasn't being the best mama I could be to my baby boys. We are only human after all and lack of sleep can really make you feel like utter crap with the smallest of daily jobs feeling like a mammoth task. Being at nursery has taught him to use a bottle, meaning I've been able to wind down breastfeeding to just a couple of times a day, which has in turn meant Mr F can now enjoy feeding Little L and get the chance to bond with him. Being able to give him a bit of formula in the evenings has helped massively with sleep at night (I'll talk more about that in a separate post...). Just having that one day a week where I can catch up with housework and my blog work has made me feel so much better too, and we all know that happy mama equals happy baby. Although I had my reservations, this change to our weekly routine really has had such a positive impact on our lives.
So for the past 4 weeks, our weekly routine which we were so used to for so long, has had a bit of a makeover. The addition of a nursery day for Little L has meant that we have changed around other activities during the week too. I used to take Little L to Rhythm Time on a Thursday and now go on a Monday, meaning I actually go with both LO and Little L. I have absolutely loved taking both boys along together and even though it's a baby group, LO has really enjoyed it and it's been such a special experience watching LO and Little L sit and enjoy the activities together.
Tuesdays have become mine and Little L's special day together as it's a day when LO is at nursery. I do realise how incredibly lucky I am to be able to have that one day where I can have that quality time with Little L and give him my undivided attention. I really feel it's important to have some time with just him as it's often so hard to do this with a second child. We go to a Baby Sensory group together, get sone lunch or meet friends, often run a few errands and generally have such a lovely day together.
And so no sooner has our change of routine started, it all feels like it's about to change again. This week is our final week of structure, of familiarity and of the routine we all seem to thrive on and I so badly crave. As we are moving imminently (within the next couple of weeks), we are stopping our baby groups which we enjoy so much. I'll be giving in the boys' notice at nursery (the thought of which is making me have tears in my eyes, it's such a wonderful place). Our house is currently in a complete and utter mess, cupboards half empty, boxes half packed. Life right now feels like it's being suspended in space. The house move is in sight yet with no fixed moving date, still slightly out of reach. Life feels a little in limbo and it's hard saying goodbye to familiarity and the safety of the routine we have known for so long now.
But I know that exciting things are just around the corner now. Within a matter of weeks we will hopefully have moved, we will be in our new home, unpacking and arranging our possessions and making the house feel like a home. We will in time establish a new routine, we will find new groups, meet new people and settle the boys into a lovely new nursery. We will enjoy lots of new ordinary moments in our new area. It's going to be a massive change but such an exciting adventure, with my three boys by my side.
I have loved taking these two to the baby Rhythm Time group together on a Monday for the past month or so. It's brought back so many memories from when I used to take LO when he was a baby and their bond seems to have grown closer since they've been going together. One of the highlights of our little weekly routine.
Linking up with Katie from Mummy Daddy Me for The Ordinary Moments.