Back to School

Vins: Mama when are you going to teach 7th grade?
Me: In January. But I’ll be in school next week teaching 6th, 7th and 8th grades. Vins: Will the assistant help you?
Me: They don’t have assistants in middle school.
Vins: No assistants? How will you handle that?!

My thoughts exactly.

Bill, Please!

LagosDad and I took Vins out for an early dinner this evening.
Vins doesn’t usually speak to people he doesn’t know (or people he does know, for that matter). But today was amazing. Once we’d finished and ready to leave, I heard him mumble, “Bill please.” He repeated himself a couple of times but the waiter didn’t hear him.
I told Vins that he had to say “Excuse me” first and then to ask and to use his manners. And he did it! “Excuse me! Can we have the bill please?”
Unbelievable! I am so thrilled with him at the moment!

Leaps and Bounds

I know one of my last posts was about Vins and how he’s making so much progress socially – but this one is too. I’m just so proud of him.
Firstly, his teacher said he’s doing really well in school. He’s getting more involved and participating more in whole class activities – especially the singing and dancing :)
We still have meltdowns at home. But they’re less frequent than before. And he’s become more independent.
He’s always been happier in smaller groups. But if he spent a whole day with a friend and then I turned up or if his friend’s parent turned up, he’d become quiet. I cannot begin to count the number of times a friend has spoken to him after school and has been ignored. Or the amount of times someone has said goodbye to him after school and Vins has pretended he can’t see him/her.
Yesterday was soooo different! Two school mums and myself took some of the kids out for lunch. There were six children in all. They had a ball. They ran around screaming and playing Hide and Seek. Luckily the restaurant was empty! They ran outside in the garden and they played with a bunch of Hot Wheels cars that Vin took with him.
I didn’t think Vins would join in as much as he did – and he was so happy! It was almost as though I wasn’t there!
The best part was when we were leaving. He put the car window down and started shouting, “Bye X! Bye! See you tomorrow!”
I’m so proud of him.

My Top Five Gorgeous Men – Reviewed

Soooo… Remember I wrote a post about my top five gorgeous men? It was about four years ago? Anyway, if you don’t – you can read it here.

I’m writing this post because my top five has changed. And I just thought you might like to know. To be honest, I know you don’t – but I’m going to tell you anyway.

I’m not a fickle person. Not really. But everything’s different now. Why? Because I discovered The Vampire Diaries! I realise I’m a little late to the game, but as my sister said – I’m so lucky I’m only just starting it now (we’re on Season 3), because I’ve still got three seasons (and the current Season 7) to go!

So… Without further ado, I present my NEW top five.

5. Ian Somerhalder










4. Ian Somerhalder








3. Ian Somerhalder











2. Ian Somerhalder











I wonder if you can guess who Number 1 will be?

1. Ian Somerhalder

SAN DIEGO - JULY 24:  Actor Ian Somerhalder in the MySpace And MTV Tower During Comic-Con 2010 - Day 3 San Diego on July 24, 2010 in San Diego, California.  (Photo by Jerod Harris/Getty Images for MySpace)










This man is SO hot!

Ok, maybe I am a little fickle.

Weighting Around

It’s been over a month since I’ve come off the Cambridge Weight Plan diet and I think I’m kind of doing ok.

Well, I’m trying not to put on what I’ve already lost! After coming off Cambridge, I definitely put on a kilo or two. I suppose you can’t go from five hundred or six hundred calories a day for three weeks to about a thousand calories a day and not expect to put any weight on. I think I put on one or two kilos.

The first couple of weeks were difficult as I was trying to control myself, but struggled a bit.

However, I think I’m managing quite well now.

The exercise isn’t going very well, but I’m being careful about what I eat.

Generally, my diet consists of boiled eggs, salad, mung salad, fruit, stir fried vegetables and a bit of chicken or chicken salad. No oil. No fat. And I’m trying to have any sugar. But that generally depends on where I am in my cycle! If we’re going out – then I eat what I like. If we’re going out several times in the week, I’m a bit careful about what I choose to eat.

In the past I’ve┬árarely thought about whether I’m making a good decision when it comes to choosing food off a menu – but I suppose I have to start now. Apparently the older you get, the harder it is to shift excess weight. Great.

Anyway, I’m going to try!

So… Here’s to the next ten kilos!


We’re Getting There

I’ve made no secret of the fact that Vins’ behaviour tends to frustrate me.

He’s always been clingy and getting him to go anywhere without me or his nanny has been a struggle. I’ve come to accept this. I mean… That’s just how he is. But it still does bother me a little from time to time.

Having said all that, he seems to be improving.

Last week a friend from school invited him (and a few others) over for a ‘movie night’. At first, Vins said he wasn’t going. Then I explained to him that he’d go at 5 pm and that they were going to play outside. Once they came in from the playground, all the children were going to eat and then change into pyjamas before watching the movie (Peter Pan). I told him his friend’s mum said that he should also take his duvet and pillow. I also told him that E (his nanny) would go with him. The excitement started building!

On the day of ‘movie night’, the traffic was disgusting. It was so bad I even told Vins he didn’t have to go if he didn’t want to. But when he said he wanted to go, I realised I couldn’t hold him back. He came home at 8.45 pm and he was SO happy. He’d had a really fun time, and I was so proud of him.

This week he had a half-day on Friday. This meant that he started school at 8 am (instead of 9.30 am) and finished at 11 am (instead of 2.30 pm). His friend’s mum asked if he would like to go home with them that day (in their car) and have lunch and play. Amazingly, Vins agreed. I say ‘amazingly’ because all of last (school) year another friend offered to take him home after school, and he always flat-out refused. He would only ever go to a friend’s house if I or E were to take him. So this Friday – we had a double victory. He went home with a friend in their car (with another friend of theirs) and he went without me or E.

Vins’ friend’s mum messaged me to say he was fine and that she’d never seen him so animated. Another friend rang me in the evening to ask where I was at pick-up, as she’d seen Vins with his friends. She said he was so happy and that she’d never heard him make so much noise before!

I know he’s better in smaller groups and that we still have a long way to go – but I think he’s turned a corner.

My baby really is growing up!

The Nanny Diaries

I don’t often write about the children’s nanny – but I have to write about this.

Anyway, so our nanny (E) has been with us since Vins was six months old. She lives with us, in our home and sleeps in the children’s room. Vins is very attached to her. He adores her and she loves him. Knowing that she’s with him has allowed me to have a life of my own. I can go out during the day or night (not that I have anywhere particular to go – but at least I have the option!), meet friends or whatever.

She travels with us when we go on holiday, and she spent five months with us in London last year while we were waiting for Booni to arrive.

She goes on leave for a month every year (back to the Philippines). I HATE that month. But I’ve survived so far!

In March this year she was going for her annual leave. The immigration laws over here changed before she came back and we had to redo all her paperwork before she could return.

While E was away, Vins was very insecure – and became very clingy. Everything was ‘mama, mama, mama’. Only mama could bathe him, put him to sleep, drop him off at school, pick him up, etc.

Luckily we had another helper (T). She took over Booni completely. I was happy, Booni was happy, Vins was happy and T was happy.

Vins slowly became more accepting of other people helping him out. He let LagosDad brush his teeth for him every day. He eventually started sleeping downstairs with my in-laws. And he eventually started having breakfast with my father-in-law every morning. This was a huge relief for me.

I was feeling so stressed. Vins wouldn’t let me spend any time with Booni. I felt guilty that I wasn’t giving Booni the same input that Vins had his age. Going out at night was off the cards unless my in laws were home. Going out during the day was off the cards as I couldn’t leave both children at home. I couldn’t see the light at the end of the tunnel. I had no idea when E would be back.

Do I sound very spoilt? I realise there are parents all over the world who do everything by themselves all the time, without any help. But this is what I’ve been used to.

Right before the boys’ birthdays I found out that T wasn’t the trustworthy person I thought she was. I found, in her bags, a whole bunch of the children’s clothes. Many of the clothes were brand new, with the tags still on. Some of the things weren’t new – but I was keeping them – either for Booni or for sentimental reasons. I found a pack of Booni’s spoons. A brand new tumbler, bowl and plate set and balloons that I’d bought for the party. Oh and E’s UGGS.

It was night when I checked her things (I’d received a tip-off). I took everything away and put it in my room. The next morning she obviously knew I’d been through her things but she didn’t say anything.

When I eventually spoke with her (when the children weren’t around), she started crying and apologising. She said she didn’t know what she was thinking and that it wouldn’t happen again. How many other things had she taken over the last few months? I asked her – she said nothing. But I know that’s not true.

My first instinct was to throw her out. I’d trusted her! I left Booni in Lagos with her (and LagosDad and my ins) and gone to London with Vins for two weeks!

I decided to give her another chance. How would I cope with the children? Especially with their birthdays and party coming up?

On the 11th T was going off and coming back the following evening. After another tip-off, I asked her to open all her bags and show me what was inside before she left. She showed me everything confidently and happily. Until I went back to the first bag she opened. I asked her to take out the plastic bag that was at the bottom of the bag. She did and told me it was clothes. The shape of the bag was oblong. So I asked her to open it. She did everything she could to delay the process. She pretended she couldn’t undo the knot she’d made at the top of the bag. She pretended she couldn’t find the scissors she needed to open the bag. I brought them to her. Once she undid the knot, she put the bag on the floor. I was carrying Booni at the time and told her that I couldn’t open the bag, so could she please open it and show me what was inside. She nudged the bag in my direction. I got a bit cross because I’d been waiting at least ten minutes to see what was inside (though I knew by now). She eventually showed me. It was a brand new pack of 52 Pampers. Not Pampers that Booni had outgrown (those are also easily accessible), but the 4+ size, which he’s currently wearing.

How could she do this to me again? How naive was I? I was so cross with myself.

I told her to pack up her things and leave. I watched her as she packed all her stuff and then I instructed the security not to let her back in the compound.

That was a terrible weekend for all of us. Vins was fine – my mother-in-law looked after him. He slept downstairs, ate downstairs and spent a lot of time with my in-laws.

Poor Booni, though. He was missing T a lot. He wasn’t used to me putting him to bed. I wasn’t used to putting him to bed. Or doing all the other things that T normally did for him. It took us both a couple of days (and a few VERY long nights) to readjust to each other.

And finally… on the 14th (five and a half months later), E came back! Vins was super excited. I didn’t tell him she was coming back (just in case something went wrong).

Vins is happy. Booni is used to her again and is happy. LagosDad is happy (I’m not bitching and moaning at/to him any more). And I’m ecstatic. I’d never have found the time to sit and write this post otherwise!




Bye, Curls!

We reached a real milestone on September 14th. That was the day of Booni’s munan.

I wasn’t as emotional about it as I was when we had to do it for Vins. And even the barber commented on it afterwards. He said I was much stronger this time than with Vins.

Booni cried. He screamed and he cried and he howled. He wasn’t in any pain, though. I think it was mainly because he had to be kept still for about twenty minutes. This is a feat that is practically impossible for him!

I had him in my lap – my legs keeping his still and my arms around him – keeping his upper body from moving. LagosDad had to hold his head still. It sounds cruel, doesn’t it? But it had to be done.

I miss his crazy curls. And somehow his bald head makes him look like more of a little boy than a baby. But I think he looks much cuter without the hair – you can really see his face now.

My gorgeous baby boy.



He’s Five!

I’m absolutely terrible.

Vins’ fifth birthday came and went – and I didn’t acknowledge it on my blog. I’m so ashamed. I didn’t write a post for him or anything.

Oh well.

Anyway – he’s FIVE! I’ve been looking at pictures of him as a baby, and can’t quite believe it.

His and Booni’s birthday pawty is over (THANK THE LORD). It was so stressful – but they had a ball. I’ve got some pictures – but they’re still on LagosDad’s laptop – so I’ll post a few soon.