Just a quick post to keep people updated with how things are going here for Anna. Since we moved over from Astana, we have been trying to make sure that Anna was slowly getting used to behaving like a little girl, rather than a large baby!
The first thing we did was to stop using her special high chair at meal times. Now obviously we were not looking for an armchair or lounge chairs to place at the dining table, but given that she isn’t quite tall enough to comfortably sit on a dining room chair and reach her food easily, we originally put a few folded up blankets under her. This was OK for a couple of weeks, but then she decided that sitting like Mummy, Daddy, Nana and John would be her preferred position.
I’m writing this post having just returned from taking Anna swimming again. Although we took her to lessons in Astana almost two years ago, that was in a huge paddling pool, and was really just to get her used to being in the water. Over here we are taking her to a lesson each week (when possible) and/or just some free time in the pool.
Although she has had her own “proper” bed to sleep on (rather than a cot/crib) in Astana for a while now, this visit was the first time she used a big girl’s bed here in Clydach. Other than moving the bed-side table further away from the bed (in case she falls out, having a wooden corner to break her fall didn’t seem to clever) we haven’t had to make any other furniture based changes.
Yes, OK, I admit that I chose that picture because I think it will cause a few of this site’s male readers to actually read the post! Anyway, why are we trying to ensure that a lot of Anna’s behaviour and accessories from her baby years are altered or removed? Because when her little brother is born (he was due a couple of days ago!), and eventually starts using them himself, we didn’t want Anna to see this as her brother stealing “her” things, but rather him going through the same processes as she already has. “I’m a big girl who doesn’t need these things” rather than “My little brother arrived and now I can’t do lots of things I used to be allowed to!”. If I’ve not spoken with you recently, and we’re not connected on facebook, this post may be the first time you have heard Irina is pregnant; everything is going fine, no problems so far, and although her due date was a few days ago, that is using the UK ETA – Kazakh doctors reckoned she wouldn’t give birth until a week later.
Finally, we have potty training (round 2)! Although Anna had used a potty first thing in the morning since she was able to sit up unassisted, when we took her back to Kazakhstan, she straight out refused to sit on one! Rather than forcing the issue, we had originally hoped she would warm to the idea on her own. We now have a combined step/potty/toilet seat adapter, and during the daytime she now wears big girl’s knickers (with only a couple of accidents so far), though night time or long car journeys would probably be asking a bit too much too soon of her, so nappy supplies are still on hand. The step is used to reach sinks (so she can wash her own hands) and kitchen surfaces when she cooks etc.
Anyway, we’re keeping our fingers crossed that Anna will continue to (overall) happily shed her baby habits and furniture, so when the newest Merriman addition arrives, no ill will will surface towards him from Anna.