Z vanished off to Budapest for 4 days so I've been home alone with the terrible two for the last few days, or not. I decided to risk driving up to friends in Muenster by myself with the girls and it worked a charm. I say risk driving up to Muenster as both girls have figured out how to get their shoulders out of the carseat straps and delight in doing this repeatedly. I have jerry rigged a breast strap so they can't thread their arms through anymore and am now waiting for their next trick. We had a lovely visit, we even all took a drive in one car (7 people in a Ford Galaxy) to go to the airport- four carseats in one car was a sight to behold, especially the 3 all in one row. It is getting easier to be alone for meals in the meantime but I do appreciate having some alternative "entertainment" for the girls apart from just me!
3 Romer kings all in a row
My nextdoor neighbour had a chat with me today about how I need to start leaving the girls to play by themselves (hello I'm trying to do that already) and how I must stop being Enya's "security blanket". Everytime something doesn't go Enya's way or Ciara steals her toy or hits her, Enya comes crying to me and I tend to pick her up and cuddle her (natural reaction I thought). However this mother of four is of the opinion that I am mollycoddling Enya and she needs to toughen up a bit and stand on her own two feet. I can see where she is coming from and I have already been trying to pull back a bit but I think she was a bit hard in her judgement of Enya. I hate how people come out with these unasked for criticisms, even though I know they are well meant. It makes me feel again like a kid in school being graded on how I'm doing as a parent.
On to a happier topic, we had our first morning at a new playgroup. This one is run by the council and is for 1-3 year olds. It was great fun with singing and NEW TOYS for the girls. As it was the first session of this term, the mom all got to drink coffee and eat breakfast together but we have been advised that in future we will spend the whole time interacting with the kids. Thank goodness, as the last groups we attended were more gossip sessions with the kids there almost only as accessories. I was really surprised at how well the girls participated as usually they have no patience with singing or activities that take longer than about 3 minutes. We've been told next week painting is on the cards so hopefully their interest continues and I have some lovely pictures to put in their art folders ;0).
The best part about today though was Ciara and Enya had a 3 hour nap at midday and I even got a one and a half hour nap in too. This meant we were all in a good mood come dinner time (no 4pm meltdown!!) and it made for a wonderfully relaxed meal, where I didn't get stressed at all regardless of how many times Ciara turned her cup over or spat her food out her mouth (my pet hate is when she plays with her chewed food and then throws it on the floor). I even got Ciara to put some apple in her mouth and suck on it. I gotta love this kid, she asks for apple the whole time but refuses to eat it in the non pureed form, even grated apple is suspect! Enya was so worried by the fact that Ciara seemed interested in the next apple slice that she landed up choking herself by stuffing a huge apple slice all at once in her mouth. Hopefully in the near future we will have 2 fruit eaters again.