Scooting Along

G got a scooter for Christmas, but it's taken her quite a while to get the hang of it. For a while she seemed very nervous of it, and would push it along without daring to actually stand on it. But a couple of weeks ago she finally started scooting up and down the living room, and while we were away last weekend she was happy enough to go along the pavement, as shown in the picture.

The next stage will be persuading her to go back on after she's crashed and taken the skin off her knees, elbows and nose. That might still be easier than getting her to wear pads, though.


G has acquired her first pet, of sorts. While staying at her grandad's last weekend, we got her a little goldfish to go with the others in his pond. For the rest of our stay, G kept asking to "see the fishies", so I had several trips into the back garden with her. Sometimes they'd be near the surface, but usually they were hidden from view under all the greenery. "Fishies hiding!" said G, often followed by, "Come on fishies!" Faced with that, I think I might hide too.

We chose an orange and white fish for G, so she could tell it apart from all the other plain orange ones. This seemed like a good idea at the time, but I've since realised it could prove problematic in the event the fish goes to visit the great big pond in the sky. I look forward to frantically scouring the area's garden centres for an orange and white fish at some point in 2014.

Deep Dark Wood

While Mrs J did a 10k run through the Forest of Dean in Saturday's sweltering heat, the two of us did something rather more pleasant and visited the area's newest attraction. It's a trail based on The Gruffalo book, one of G's favourite reads. This was a good idea partly because it was an opportunity to further encourage G's interest in books, and mostly because it was in the woods and therefore completely in the shade.

The trail itself features scenes from the book recreated by huge wood carvings. G toddled along to each one, identified the characters, recited a bit of the relevant dialogue to herself, then toddled on along the trail. She enjoyed it enough to be worth a return visit, not least because she's not really old enough to enjoy the adventure playground at the end.

Although G's language is improving all the time, she still has trouble with the word Gruffalo. "Gwoh-woh!" she says every time, just as she has done ever since I first read it to her ages ago. Back then a few sounds was all she could really manage, but now she could probably say it properly if she really put her mind to it. Or I could always try to persuade Julia Donaldson to change it for the next sequel. I'm so used to "Gwoh-woh" now, I think it's got a certain ring to it.

More Wellies

G's fleeting and unseasonal interest in wearing her wellies at every opportunity continues. Yesterday was the first properly sunny day for a while, but she insisted on having a coat as well as wellies on when we went out for a walk, as shown in the picture.

She also kicked up a fuss when I tried to take them off once we'd got back indoors. "No! More wellies!" she pouted at me. If she starts keeping them on in the bath, drastic action will be required.

Wellies Indoors

We went to Mothercare yesterday to pick up a new car seat. This being one of those parenting jobs that can only be described as tedious, I let Mrs J poke around all the options while I took G to the little playing area in the corner of the shop.

You'll notice that G insisted on wearing wellies ("No shoes! Wellies!"), even though we were indoors and it was dry outside anyway. Perhaps she knows that wellies are about to become an essential fashion item for summer 2012. And when I say 'fashion' I obviously mean 'necessary due to constant threat of rain'.

Posh Cutlery

Today was a repeat of a day trip we did a couple of years ago, when G was still a baby. We went over the Snake Pass to Hathersage in the Peak District, for a bit of outdoor swimming at the village lido, then a snack at the David Mellor factory café.

Everything in the café is a Mellor design, from the tables and chairs to the plates and salt cellars. He's best remembered for his cutlery though, and even the little knife and fork that came with G's children's meal were from the pen of the late design legend. G was obviously excited about this, as she attempted to use them on her sandwich. Until I told her it was ok to use her hands.

It was just as well she had a good lunch, because the swimming trip wasn't as successful. G enjoyed it for about five minutes, but I think the water was still a bit on the cold side for her, especially with a stiff wind off the Peak District moors. "Bye bye swimming pool" she pouted at me from behind her damp hair, as I tried vainly to interest her in another game of round-and-round-the-garden. Maybe we'll come again when it's sunny.

Magic Beans

For the last couple of weeks, G has often been talking about magic beans. "Magic beans!" she'd say, looking expectantly at me. I assumed they'd done Jack and the Beanstalk at nursery and she was repeating it back to me, something which she's done with other stories before.

Last night, G was chattering away about her magic beans again, and Mrs J realised what she actually meant. Magazine. She'd basically spent the last fortnight asking me to get her magazine, and having me completely ignore her. At times like this, she must think I'm a complete cretin.

Ground Floor

We've had an old friend staying with us this weekend, and here's G doing her best to get in the way as I tried to get the spare room ready the other day. We went to the airport to meet him on Friday, and I had to be creative to keep G entertained while we waited. Eventually we ended up going up and down in one of the big lifts, with G repeating what the disembodied announcer was saying. "Ground floor!" she chirruped happily, at least 397 times. Next time I'll remember to take her a book.