One sad little water baby

We had our second swimming lesson on Tuesday and, typically, it was right when Sam wanted to go to sleep. Grizzly before we had even walked into the swimming centre, I wasn’t sure it was going to go well.

Unfortunately, I wasn’t wrong. 

Perhaps the saddest part – sadder than having your baby cry quietly but fairly constantly through the lesson – was that he did everything asked of him. 

Sam held tightly to the side each time we reached the edge of the pool. He kicked his little legs. He held tightly to my fingers as I pulled him across the pool. He reached out and grabbed (and tried to eat) the rubber duck I threw in front of us to encourage using his arms.

All while crying. It was heartbreaking. 

I considered taking him out, but the fact he was doing everything said to me that he wasn’t having a bad time, he was just tired. I know my boy’s angry cry, and that wasn’t it. I did get a couple of watery smiles when he saw the duck (his favourite bath toy) and I quacked at him (a sound generally guaranteed to get a smile or giggle). 

Sure enough, he fell asleep within minutes on the way home. 

I’ve booked us into a slightly later class for next week so he has time for a nap beforehand. This weekend, Carl and I are going to take him swimming so he remembers that it is fun, and we can start afresh next week! 

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Sam’s first holiday

We have survived Sam’s first trip away. Our week in Center Parcs was brilliant! Thoroughly recommend it to anyone as either a family or group holiday (or both). We stayed in a villa with sauna, games room, open plan kitchen-diner and 4 bedrooms, all with en suites. We were extremely close to the Plaza which holds the swimming pool and restaurants, and only a few minutes away from the village square with pottery painting centre (where we had Sam’s hand and footprints moulded) and pancake house. The Spa ‘Aqua Sana’ was slightly further, but could still be walked to in 15 minutes.

Longleat Center Parcs is hilly. One day I think we clocked up about 8 miles worth of walking, but that doesn’t take into account all of the hills! I definitely did a lot of exercise last week…and a good thing too since we also ate a LOT! Carl and Jon are big fans of cooking excellent cuisine, so a large food shop was done on the first day and we had homecooked dinners every night. Lamb, a BBQ, fish stew, pulled pork…we were spoiled! I can’t remember the last time I ate so much food.

While we all had separate activities booked during the week, we went to the pool as a big group on both Wednesday and Thursday. Sam loved the water by the end and laughed his head off. We all enjoyed the slides and rapids (I obviously didn’t take Sam on them!), although I did think the boys might be thrown out after their antics on both! Ignoring the light system on the slides and going down in quick succession…throwing themselves down the rapids and taking out other people… So much fun being a big kid! I think we all came away with RRI: ‘random rapids injuries’ – I still have a huge bruise on my knee from last Tuesday!

When we arrived home, Sam was all out of sorts. I think he missed the constant excitement of being with his uncles and aunt. Poor bub, the post holiday blues…

All in all, it was an excellent holiday and so good having a few days away. We’re already planning next year’s trip. Can’t wait!

This is the life

Pedicure, swimming, massage…it hasn’t been a bad day. 

Becky and I started our day well with a pedicure and now have beautifully sparkly pink nails – it was lovely having an hour or so to relax and be girly, laughing with Becky and enjoying a free glass of bubbles (acceptable at 10am, right?). The stroll back from the Aqua Sana to our villa mainly consisted of us laughing and talking rubbish. 

We walked in to see Sam in his bumbo, Carl feeding him a bottle and Toby and Jake (2 of Sam’s uncles) both distracting him so he would take the bottle without realising what he was doing. How many men does it take to feed a baby…? 

This afternoon, we all went to the pool. Sam loved it! First stop was a shallow toddler pool. He nearly fell asleep floating on his back as I supported his head and back (mind you, his wet suit is so buoyant that I could probably have let him go). In the main pool, Becky and I bounced around with him and, once he settled, I pulled him along on his front…he was kicking his little legs away! Definitely going to be a water baby! After a feed on poolside, he fell soundly asleep wrapped up in a towel. Angelic…when he feels like it…

Late afternoon had a hot stone massage in store for me, which was so good. I’ve never had one before but I would recommend it. 25 minutes where I thoroughly relaxed and switched off from everything. 

As they say, sometimes a change is as good as a rest. 

Swim lesson

Sam had his first short swimming lesson today. Did he enjoy it? Well, he was definitely the most vocal in the group!! Typically, it was exactly when he would have been best off napping. He pretty much cried through the half hour session…except for when Carl lifted him up and down, in and out of the water. At the end, we had a few minutes in a jacuzzi (bubbles off), lay Sam on his back in the water…and he nearly went to sleep!! Such a tired little man. 

Sam’s first certificate for the wall

Center Parcs is a perfect family holiday and our villa is great! Open kitchen/diner, games room, sauna, all the rooms have nice ensuites. Can’t complain!

Sam struggled with sleeping upstairs without us, so we kept him down with us all evening – he was very unsettled yesterday after a 3 hour car journey and all new surroundings. At least I have new routes to walk when I want him to sleep…

Swim time

Yesterday, Sam had his first swimming pool session while at my uncle and aunt’s. It was a glorious day and although he was cranky after refusing to sleep (far too many people and things to see!) we decided to give it a go. 

We popped him in his swim nappy and wet suit and prepared for a meltdown. 

He enjoyed it! 

Much to our amazement, despite the fact he had been crying before we got in, he was perfectly content! I slowly walked in with him until he was about waist deep. I walked backwards in the water, gently pulling him round…he was more than happy. Carl joined us and we had a lovely time until the clouds came over and he got chilly. 

I am feeling a lot happier about how he’ll be at Center Parcs; I can’t wait to get him back in the water!