Posts Tagged ‘sleep’


August 13, 2012

Babess and Fainjin share a bedroom.  Recently, Fainjin has decided that he is more comfortable sleeping on the floor next to his bed than on the mattress.  Last night he invited Babess to a “sleepover” on his bed instead of her own.  She was so excited!  She moved her quilt from her bed to his, and stacked up a little pile of books – she “needs” 6 or 8 books in bed with her every night.

They chattered away much later than normal, but eventually Fainjin dropped off to sleep and Babess was left talking to herself, which she did happily for a while longer.

They had so much fun that tonight they’re doing it again.  It’s possibly the easiest sleepover I could ever hope to host.

© UpsideBackwards 2012.

The voice of authority

July 7, 2012

It’s Saturday morning, the middle of the school holidays.  It’s early, still dark.  Fainjin appears next to me, fully dressed.  “Mum!” he says brightly, “It’s after 6 o’clock!”

“Yes, it is,” I agree, not quite so brightly, “but it’s the weekend, remember?  So we don’t get up until after seven o’clock.”

“Oh.  Sorry!” he sings, rather unapologetically.  He takes himself into the kitchen and bangs about a bit making himself breakfast.  Every so often he comes back in to check with us about something or other, waking me out of my doze each time.

A little later, Babess is awake and calling out.  Fainjin goes in to talk to her, and I hear him tell her she can’t get up until after 7 o’clock.  Little hypocrite, I think to myself fondly.  Then Babess calls, “Mum!  What day is it?”

Fainjin tells her it’s Wednesday.  All I can assume is that he’s remembered “weekend” and confused it with a day starting with W.  She ignores him and calls out louder, “Muuuum! What DAY is it?”

Fainjin is indignant that she hasn’t taken his word for it.  “It’s Wednesday!  I told you!”

The Dad and I start snickering when Babess calls out again, “MUM!”

Poor Fainjin is completely offended by this stage.  He draws on his full 17-and-a-half months of superior experience in instructing his baby sister.  His exasperated voice has us in (quiet) stitches.  “Ba-bess!  It’s Wednesday!  Trust me!  I’m like a grown-up!”


© UpsideBackwards 2012.

A too-reliable alarm clock

June 23, 2012

The Dad and I were both very very tired last night.  I was so tired I could barely stand up, and felt quite ill.  We had good, and even quite bloggable reasons – it has been a busy few days, and I had had very little sleep the night before.

Babess had a birthday!  She’s four!

We saw Flight of the Conchords on stage! (They were brilliant).

The dishwasher broke, late on a Thursday so we couldn’t call the repair company until Friday morning and they can’t come until Monday – and we’re hosting Babess’ birthday party on Sunday.  Boo.

Pearl, Fainjin and I went to the school Matariki celebration, at dawn on the beach looking up at the stars and freezing our toes, then warming up with porridge, milo and cheerful conversation MUCH too early in the school hall.

Pearl went off to her first weekend-long “camp” with Girls’ Brigade, fascinating the younger two who have visions of her in a tent in the wilderness (in fact she is in a lovely retreat centre out in the country).  They keep asking whether she has a bed, is there any food, will she have a shower, is there a roof?

So last night, over dinner, I suggested to Fainjin – who is our alarm clock most mornings – that perhaps we could have a sleep in.  He looked dubious.  “You can get up at 6 if you like,” I said, “even get dressed.  You can play with your Lego.  But please let Mummy and Daddy sleep until the first number is 8.”

He agreed, and soon enough we went thankfully to our beds.

This morning, at 6:42 (later than normal, at least), he came running into our room.  “Mum!  It’s after 6!  Time to get up!”

“Fainjin, remember, we’re sleeping in?  You can get up but Mummy and Daddy are still asleep.  Come back when it’s 8 o’clock.”

“Oh.  Yeah.  Sorry!” and he disappeared.  But not for long.  He came back in several times over the next half-hour, asking questions and checking in.  He helped Babess get up, set up breakfast, played for a bit, and then I heard the sweetest sound.   He was reading to Babess!  He had retrieved his school reader from his school bag, and was reading her the story.  She made sage comments on the pictures while he sounded out the words.

We went to the library today and he was chuffed to find some books that he could read all by himself with minimal help.  Perhaps tomorrow morning he’ll read to Babess again.

© UpsideBackwards 2012.

A sort-of sleep-in

April 8, 2012

Fainjin has been the first one awake for the past few mornings.  He bounces out of bed and runs in to see us, banging doors as he goes.  As it’s a long holiday weekend, we haven’t been quite as keen to get up as he is.

This morning he came in – already dressed – and, seeing us clearly still mostly-asleep, snuggled in next to me.  But he could see my alarm clock.

“It’s seven fifty-six!” he announced.

“No it’s not,” I groaned (it might have come out more like “Nhhhnnnnn”.)  (Yes, we are exceptionally lucky; our children do sleep past seven in the mornings).

“Now it’s seven fifty-seven!”

I wasn’t facing the clock.  I still didn’t believe him.  “Is it really a five?  Does it look like an S for snake, or the other way ’round?”

“The other way round,” he confirmed.  So it was 7:27, not 7:57.  Not that I really cared all that much.

“Now it’s 7:28!” he said, and thirty seconds later “It’s still 7:28…   now it’s 7:29!”

I dozed off and dreamed I was sleeping next to the Speaking Clock. Only it had icy-cold feet and wriggled and kept asking for breakfast in between telling me the time every minute…

© UpsideBackwards 2012.

Just a quick stay

January 20, 2012

Fainjin and Babess have gone for a sleep-over with The Fabulous Auntie B.  They will be away three nights, and it’s their first sleep-over.  Or maybe Fainjin’s second… I think he might have had a sleep-over there the night Babess was born.

They have been very excited and looking forward to it, and I’m told they have been very good this evening and have enjoyed having their older cousins teach them dances and read stories to them.

This afternoon, when The Fabulous Auntie B came to pick them up, one of the cousins scooped up Babess and said excitedly, “Do you know where you’re going?!”

Babess widened her eyes and said “Yes!  I’m gon’ stay at your house for threeeeeeee” – she held up three fingers – “… minutes!”

© UpsideBackwards 2012.

Positive visualisation

January 16, 2012

Babess woke up crying at 2:30am one morning recently.  I went to comfort her, and she was very upset.  She had dreamt about hyenas chasing her (too much Lion King, methinks), and they were “vewy vewy scawy”.  I put her into bed next to The Dad while I re-made her bed – she’s a wriggly sleeper.  She chatted to him about her “scawy” dreams, and revealed there was another one which had involved camels.

Not wanting Little Miss Wriggly to take over our bed for the rest of the night, I suggested she go back to her own bed and “try to have happy dreams now”.

“Yes!” she agreed.  “I will dream about Tinkerbell now.”

So off to bed she went, quite happily.

Next morning I had forgotten her plan, but the first thing she told me when she woke up was, “Mummy!  Tinkerbell did bring me a present!”

That’s quite a neat trick, pre-selecting your dreams.

© UpsideBackwards 2012.

Not tired, no really I’m not

January 15, 2012

Fainjin had a friend come over to play today.  While they discussed dinosaurs and Lego and fire-engines, we sat in the kitchen with his friend’s Mum and enjoyed a leisurely chat over a cuppa.

Babess appeared – in her pink fairy dress, of course – and climbed up into my lap.  She snuggled right in, and started sucking her thumb.

“Are you a bit tired?” I asked, and she murmured “Mmmmm” before realising it was a trick question and shaking her head.

“Are you sure?  You might need a nap…”  This suggestion was met with a more vigorous head-shake, and she snuggled harder against me, pulling her arm into her sleeve (something she always does when tired).

I let her snuggle, and kept chatting.  Within five minutes The Dad raised his eyebrows at me and nodded towards Babess.  She was fast asleep.

© UpsideBackwards 2012.

Conversations at 1:30am

January 2, 2012

“Muuuummmmmeeeeeee!  Muuuummmmmeeeeee!”

There’s a certain sort of urgency that gets me out of bed at 1:30am.  Sometimes the little ones call out and I can tell (through my own sleep-fuddled fog) that they’re calling out in their sleep, or are nearly back to sleep themselves.  But sometimes there’s a note in their voices that gets me up and to their sides before I’ve even really realised I’ve heard anything.

This morning, Babess was calling me, but Fainjin was the one sobbing.  I went to him first.

“What’s the matter?”

“Daddy gave me the wrong food!” he was heartbroken.  Fearing a sore tummy and possibly a stomach bug, I asked, “When?  What food?”

“At lunch!” he wailed.  Whew, more than 12 hours ago, probably not a sore tummy then.  “What wrong food?” I was confused.

“I didn’t want milk on my cake!” more sobs. Since we didn’t have cake, with or without milk on it, I rub his back and tell him it’s a dream.  Some cuddles later, he settles back down.

Meanwhile, I’ve been talking across the room to Babess, who is sitting up wide-eyed.  She is worried about the monsters.  No monsters, I tell her, they’re not allowed in our house and certainly not to scare our children.  Did I growl at them, she wants to know.  Yes of course I did, because Mummies are good at scaring off monsters, and now they won’t dare come near.

“Has the moon gone down?” she asks next.  I don’t know whether the moon going down is a good thing or a bad thing, so I hazard a guess and speak confidently.  “Yes, all gone now.”  Turns out that’s a good thing, she’s worried about the “moon monster”, but if it’s gone then all will be well.  I don’t know where she’s got the idea of a moon monster from, or why she’s suddenly scared of monsters in the middle of the night.  More cuddles for her, her eyes are still wide and fearful but she lies down and snuggles her Piglet.

They both ask me to leave the light on, and Babess makes sure I’ll leave her cot side down (which we do anyway), because “otherwise I’ll be trapped”.  Since she can’t climb out even with the side down, I’m not sure what she means, but as long as she’s happy I’m not going to argue the point.

I stumble back to bed, tell the half-awake Dad what a brute he is for putting milk on Fainjin’s cake (he might as well be as confused as I am!), and drop back off to sleep amazingly quickly.

© UpsideBackwards 2012.

Babess’ dream

November 30, 2011

Babess dreamed a lot last night, apparently.

“I dreamed and dreamed and dreamed!  And then I cried,” she told us.  Her dream was about a fairy.

“She camed in my window, and she went up and up and up!  She went up to my roof.  And she did dream about me! … And then she cried.”

A recursive, rather sad dream…

© UpsideBackwards 2011.

The monster under the bed

November 13, 2011

Babess was telling us this morning about the monster in her room.  She wasn’t really scared, more thrilled-to-be-thrilled and enjoying telling us a story.

Apparently there’s a monster which lives in her room, and it’s black.  It sleeps under her bed because it doesn’t want to sleep in her bed, even though there’s lots of room.

“Would you share your bed with the monster?” I asked.

“No,” – silly Mummy! – “I would come in with you guys.”  Ahhh.

Also, when the monster is finished sleeping under her bed, it comes out and eats all our food.  Fainjin interrupted at this point to enquire whether it was the monster who ate all the rice bubbles, since there aren’t any left?  The Dad asked why the monster doesn’t go to the supermarket to get its own food.

Babess shook her head seriously.  “No, it can’t, because: [pause for effect] all the monster food is. Too. High!”

So it’s a short black monster with a fondness for rice bubbles.

© UpsideBackwards 2011.

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