Two in There!

on becoming an aunt
September 14, 2009, 3:29 pm
Filed under: babies, parenting, pregnancy


12 weeks ago I became an Auntie for the very first time, to a beautiful little girl, Olivia Grace. I’d long been looking forward to her arrival, being absolutely overjoyed when my sister-in-law announced she was expecting last December, but I never could have anticipated how special it would be to finally have her here.  As the oldest of three girls, and the first to have children, I had yet to experience what it was like assume the role of doting aunt, where as my two sisters and Dave’s sister have had 2 and a half  years of it with my own daughter.  Seeing how much they truly love Heidi, and how happy they make her, I just couldn’t wait to say hello to my niece. I felt compelled to get the knitting needles out, the way I have with my own babies, and took great pleasure in making beautiful things for her! Auntie Siobhan; makes me so proud to be called that. I have to say, it’s just absolutely wonderful beyond words. (and, it has been a brilliant excuse to get camera-happy as you can see!)

Who would have thought it possible to instantly love a baby so much that isn’t your own? The first time we went to see her at the hospital, I was just overcome with how much I felt for her. Doubly special was seeing how much my own little one loves her new cousin. I’m so excited about being a part of her life, and of course, having another little girl to spoil! I hope that I can be there to share in all of her milestones, and be there for her whenever she needs a hug or eventually, a shoulder to cry on.

I’m very fortunate to have a large, close-knit family, and the bond I have with my Aunts and Uncles is particularly strong; becoming an Auntie myself has pushed me to reflect on my own relationships with them.  Even now as a grown woman, with children of my own, I still care deeply about them, and and so grateful for everything they’ve given me over the course of my life so far. It’s a special kind of love that I hope one day Olivia will have for me, David and her cousins, and that she’ll enjoy spending time with us as much as we will with her.

Particularly lovely has been the opportunity to really bond with my sister-in-law. I’ve always gotten on famously with Karen, though there’s something unspeakable that connects two women as mothers. It’s been brilliant to share our pregnancy woes, and to be asked advice and to feel like I can actually be of use! I’m amazed at how quickly and effortlessly she has slipped into motherhood, and all of it’s trials so far (12 weeks with a colicky baby!) and seeing how proud she’s made her own parents. It’s lovely watching her with Olivia, and knowing how much she adores Heidi,  I’m so happy that she’s now a mummy herself, and can lavish all that love and attention on her gorgeous little girl.

She’s just absolutely cute as a button, and we all love her to pieces. There.

I think that’s all the gooey-hormonal pregnant lady chat anyone needs to hear today!


will you dress them alike?
September 8, 2009, 8:32 pm
Filed under: babies, parenting, pregnancy, twins


I’m surprised at how often I’ve been asked this question considering these two are still tucked up and cooking nicely. In all honesty, I can say that it’s something that I hadn’t given much thought to until other people started bringing it up. Convinced that I’d be having at least one more girl (until I found out at 22 weeks that there were two sets of boys bits in there),  all I’d really thought of in that regard was , “oh I’ll get to use all those lovely things I’d kept of Heidi’s”. Additionally, when I found out I was having boys, funnily enough, what to dress them in just didn’t really factor into my thoughts. Probably why I didn’t start buying things until about 26 weeks this time. The urge to buy dozens of little corduroy dresses, with rainbow coloured woolen tights and matching crochet beanies, was entirely absent. Beautiful clothing had always seemed an entirely feminine indulgence to me.

To answer my intial question, after much pondering on the matter; no, I don’t think I will. Yes, I’m having same-sex twins, but does that mean I should indulge the stereotypes we’ve all come to expect? Before I was a multiple-mum-to-be, I found the idea of twins in matching outfits ‘cute’ and even ‘adorable’, though now it just saddens me to think that it’s almost expected. I can understand the odd outfit, worn to please well-meaning grandparents etc, but to consciously make the effort to have them the same, seems just bizarre, not to mention a lot of unecessary time and effort!

Add to this the idea of fostering individuality, and the idea computes even less. I’m having twins, but more often than not as well as rejoicing in the uniqueness of having multiples, I look forward to getting to know my two sons, and get quite excited over what the future will hold for both of them. It may sound unbelievable to others, but they already have very different personalities, so to try and ‘lump’ them together for cuteness’ sake seems, well, just plain daft, really.

We’re already having the “oh my god, how on earth will we tell them apart panic?” and it would be mad to add to that anxiety, having already discussed various indentification methodologies (keeping on hospital bands, painting a toenail on each twin a different colour, Dave has even suggested branding, but I fear that taking things too far).

I guess that I hope by dressing them in their own outfits, that I might be setting the ball rolling for other people to appreciate their individuality. I hope that they get to enjoy opening their own birthday and christmas cards, that they recieve their own presents and that they’re valued for who each of them are, rather than just being ‘the twins’. While it’s going to be wonderful for them to enjoy being part of a unique group of people, brought into the world as multiples, I don’t want to hinder their personal growth in anyway by restricting them to that label.

Chivalry is dead. Well, at least on Edinburgh’s buses
August 16, 2009, 8:27 am
Filed under: misc, pregnancy

Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m all for equality in the sexes, but does that have to come at the expense of plain old-fashiond good manners and common courtesy? Can chivalry and equality co-exist? Gone are the days when a gentleman would offer up his seat to a lady, let alone a pregnant one.

Apparently Edinburgh’s male commuter population is of the opinion that the cut-throat world of the to and from work bus journey, is every man and woman for themselves. They are practiotioners of the three S’s; the Snare-Sit-Stay approach to bus travel. Desperate to secure a seat, a sure sign of a triumph over the weaker and less able, Modern Commuter Man, will hurridly push past those vying for a place to park their backside, whilst simultaneously snatching the last metro from under the hand of the young woman who was clearly there first, before triumphantly taking his place in the priority need seat at the front of the bus. There we have the ‘Snare’. MCM has his seat, thus, the ‘Sit’. Secondly, to further this proud statement of victory, instead of sitting with his knees in front of him, he will ensure that both his outside leg and foot are in the aisle as a further sign of dominance (and indeed, as a warning) to the weaker, standing commuters. Dare they try and walk past, all the while running the risk of tripping and falling, not to mention utter public embarassment? This is exactly what Modern Commuter Man wants; a further fortitude of his alpha-male ego. This is the ‘Stay’.

Fastidious in his approach to the application of the three S’s, MCM refuses to be budged by even the most fearsome of commutery predators: the old, the disabled, and the pregnant. Not only will MCM not give up his seat, he will enitrely refuse to acknowledge the very existance of said predators, and in a final display of his territorial determination, he will place both of his hands on the rail infront of him, and grip them tightly. There is no hope for anyone. MCM has sealed his victory, and will coast safely and happily to work.

Well this pregnant lady is not about to let this continue. I’m formultating a plan, which will most probably involve toe-stamping, ‘accidental’ shin kicking, and many a dirty look and audible tut. Watch this space.

a few thoughts
August 17, 2006, 8:26 am
Filed under: babies, misc, pregnancy

Special K – Why is it so good? I mean, technically it’s a diet food, ergo it should be crap, but it’s wonderful! It’s the tastiest, yummiest loveliest thing, and it help’s you stay svelt and beautiful (if part of a calorie controlled diet, for me it doesn’t count since I’m eating so much at the mo).

Also, I’m now 18 weeks pregnant, and I can feel my baby wriggling about. I started to feel he/she at about 16 weeks, but it felt more like butterflies flapping away in my tummy. Over the past two weeks the baby’s bones have been hardening, so now I can really feel all the little pokes and prods as the baby wiggles. I’ve been playing music to the baby too, and so far it approves or Rilo Kiley and NIN (what an odd combo!) and particularly enjoys the friends theme tune. I can’t help but giggle when the baby dances, it’s such an odd sensation, but yet feels completely natural at the same time. It’s such a wonderful feeling.

I also finished making a little panda bag last night, and it’s officially the first thing up for sale on my etsy shop which you can check out here. I still haven’t thought of a good name for my shop, so it’s imaginatively called ‘Spilly’s Shop’ for the time being. If anyone has any good suggestions please let me know. I’ll be linking to the shop from the beanmilk nav bar at some point soon, so please check it out from time to time, and I’d love it if you lovely people were to buy something nice. If you leave me a comment here, you might just score yourself some mates rates ;)

On a not-so-fun note, is anyone else really starting to feel really uneasy about this whole terrorist thing? My whole life I’ve always thought how lucky we are not to live with war or fear of war, but that’s sort of gone away now. I wouldn’t get on a plane if you paid me right now, which is pretty odd considering I’m usually quite a rational girl (ok, well that’s a fib, but I’m not afraid of flying). I think it’s because now I not only have myself to think about, that the threat seems much more real. I even get uneasy on the bus to work at the moment. Every day we’re hearing about the threat of getting blown to smitherines for Allah’s sake. I’ve always found Islam a really fascinating religion, and having muslim family, I’ve come to understand a fair bit about it. I just can’t get my head round all of this extremism. It makes me worried for my family too. Scotland’s not known for being the most tolerant or unprejudiced country, and I’m afraid my family are going to be the victim of people’s narrow-mindedness. It really puts things in to perspective for you, it makes you really think about how terrifying it must be for those people who face war every day, and all the innocent people who have died through other people’s violence. I really wish we could all get along. What’s so horrible about peace? Can’t we all just resolve our conflict like reasonable, good people, and stop sacrificing the innocent because the big boys like to play with guns and bombs. I don’t know, life is just such an amazing thing, why do people want to destroy it?

Anyway, that’s enough from me just now. I’m going to go and eat more magic cereal, drink tea, and not think about all the badness in the world :)