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    Two of Everything                                                                                                                                                    

    Two of Everything: May 2012

Thursday, 31 May 2012

A Rainy Day

Today it has rained all day.  We've been to twins' group this week and the supermarket too, and I object to paying £6 to go to our local soft play place.  Everything costs more when you have two!  After more than a week of beautiful sunshine and lots of outdoor play, we were stuck indoors, so I had to get a bit creative.

This morning I hunted out a story bag which used to belong to my mum when she was working.  She was an Early Years teacher, like me, and she was fantastic at putting these bags and boxes together for children to explore stories.  The children had a lovely time looking at the books and playing with the soft toys.

After, they enjoyed playing with the fabric.  Little Miss always makes a beeline for this kind of thing at twins' group; she likes to wrap them around herself, and put them over her head, popping out to say "boo!"  And trust a boy to make himself a cape, although he was buzzing like a bee - no superman just yet!

After lunch and a nap, it was time to get messy.  This morning I made some edible paints, a recipe I found on The Imagination Tree, a lovely blog with lots of fantastic ideas for things to do with your little ones.  It is made with boiling water so it had to have some time to cool.  This is the first time I've been brave enough to do anything like this - a class full of three year olds doesn't bother me in the least; 18 month old twins is another matter entirely...

Well, it went brilliantly.  They really enjoyed it and spent a good half an hour exploring, which I thought was pretty amazing.  I thought there was going to be enough left to do it again tomorrow but they kept asking for more and it had soon all gone!  Here they are having a whale of a time:

I'm linking this up with Multiple Mummy's Family Frolics

The Gallery - 'Sunshine'

This week's gallery theme is 'Sunshine'.  I decided not to take it literally, so here is a picture of my baby girl at 7 months old, and this is why it links to the theme:

"You are my sunshine, my only sunshine,
You make me happy, when skies are grey,
You'll never know, dear, how much I love you,
Please don't take my sunshine away."

She was a poorly girl when she was born and we thought we might lose her.  She brightens my every day.

Check out the other lovely pictures at Sticky Fingers.

Tuesday, 29 May 2012

Going to groups with twins

The other day someone asked me if I take the children to lots of groups.  Well no, actually I don't.  We can't go to groups you have to pay for because taking two makes it really expensive.  And in my experience toddler groups don't work with twins.  

The first toddler group we went to was in the local village hall and at the end of the session there was a singing time.  Everybody sat in a circle on the floor with their (one) child on their knee, and I managed to grapple my two onto mine.  Then they decided to sing 'Ring-a-ring-a-roses' and everyone stood up.  And looked at me.  Now my two were about 13 months old at the time, not walking, and getting tired and grizzly.  I knew if I got up with one I wouldn't be able to pick the other one up (I've only recently mastered this, since they've been steady on their feet - before that I found it impossible unless I could lift them from their cots).  So the only thing I could do was to get up and move, from the floor, holding both babies.  I nearly gave myself a hernia.  And everybody watched, someone said "oh, wow!" and nobody offered to help.  I wasn't impressed, I wasn't there to be a freak show.  We didn't go back.  

The second toddler group I tried seemed a bit better, initially.  Until one of the bigger boys decided it would be fun to give my 14 month olds (one not walking by this point) a good hard shove.  One after the other, as I stood one crying baby up he shoved the other one over, twice each before I managed to gather them up like a mother hen.  I was horrified, the babies were really upset and the little boy's grandmother was completely oblivious, having a natter on the corner.  And when I went to speak to the person in charge all she did was to go and tell the grandmother, who did nothing.  It became apparent that it was the kind of setup where children could do whatever they wanted and there would be no consequences.  As a nursery teacher myself, not my kind of place, and I didn't feel like it would be possible to watch, and protect, both my children all the time.  We didn't go back. 

One group we do go to is our local twins' group.  It's been a bit of a lifeline for me from the beginning, having first popped in when I was still pregnant and then starting to take the babies when they were 8 weeks old.  There was always someone to feed a baby for me and all the mummies had been through what I was going through and could offer masses of support and advice.  I still find this now - everyone mucks in and helps each other, and each others' children, and I have made some good friends.  

When I told this to the person who asked me about groups, I felt faintly embarrassed, like I was being critical of mums of singletons (like her!)  I don't mean to be critical at all, I have just found it really hard going to places where people stare at you because you are 'the twin mum' and don't seem to see when you are struggling.  I'm sure there are plenty of  toddler groups where people give and receive brilliant support, but sadly I haven't managed to find them yet.  

We did try one paid group which was good.  It was a messy play group and I took my dad because I knew it would be impossible to do it on my own.  We went for a trial session which cost me SEVEN POUNDS and if we wanted to continue we would have had to sign up for a twelve week term at a cost of around ONE HUNDRED POUNDS!!!!  I'm sorry, you run a lovely group but it's nothing I couldn't do at home with my little ones for a fraction of the cost.  We didn't go back.  

Monday, 28 May 2012

Meal Planning Monday

The veg box remained fairly safe this week.  I did have a rather large red onion dropped on my toe and I had to rescue the carrots again but we got away without the teeth marks this time.  Here's Little Miss checking out the onions:

Here's what we're eating this week with the contents of the box, plus fennel and broccoli which I ordered too:

Marinated barbecued chicken with salad (grated cucumber is going down a storm at the moment (as Little Miss still doesn't have any molars - cucumber's tricky with gums!))
Vegetable and quorn sausage pasta bake made with roasted squash and peppers.  I'm not a huge fan of quorn sausages but normal ones have so much salt in its a bit bonkers (plus there are fewer WW points for me in the quorn ones.)
Grilled salmon with new potatoes, asparagus and broccoli - the first veg box asparagus offering of the year, which Little Man will be very excited about.
Lamb and lentil curry with rice and broccoli - I'm using lentils to eke out the lamb a bit - its such an expensive meat I can't really justify big portions mid week.
Fennel and tomato couscous with fish - this is based on a Jamie Oliver recipe, but I cook the fish separately, use less couscous, and miss out the chillies.  Its really delicious and the children love it - I never thought I would see toddlers eating and enjoying fennel, of all things!

I haven't managed to put last week's chicken tagine recipe on - we ate it before I remembered to take a picture.  I had two hungry, demanding toddlers on my hands at the time.  It was yummy though and it worked well, despite the experimentation!

This week I have made peanut butter cookies too - they are really nice but a bit light and crumbly for little ones, they fall apart when they take a bite.  It might partly be the heat but they haven't been very interested so far, so I'm hoping I might catch a hungry moment to see what they really think!  

Check out more Monday meal planning over at Mrs M's.

Saturday, 26 May 2012

Out in the garden

From what I remember, the weather last summer was a bit rubbish.  I didn't even get as far as buying suncream for the children as we hardly managed to get out in the garden at all.  It didn't help that The Daddy had to have his hip replaced in the middle of May, one week before we started weaning - not a good combination of factors, I can promise you!

This year I am determined to redress the balance.  The children are up on their feet now, so I no longer have to carry two babies outside, hoping that the first one doesn't roll off down the hill while I fetch the second (I never did master picking them up together when they were little).  So this week's hot weather has been a bit of a blessing and we've been making the most of it.

I'm not sure the cat is very happy about it.  All she wants to do is lie in the shade but she is always found and chased round the garden, and she keeps having her cat flap tunnel filled with stones.  Twin collaboration, already?  Oh dear.

I'm linking this up with Fiona's 'Country Kids' at Coombe Mill.

Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall

Thursday, 24 May 2012

Picture Postcard

Tara over at Sticky Fingers has a long running linky called 'The Gallery'.  This week is the 100th one!  Each week (and this is a really impressive work schedule, I'm lucky if I shave my legs once a week...) she presents a theme around which lots of people (and I mean LOTS of people) submit photos.  So I thought I'd join in and share some blog love.

This week's theme is 'Picture Postcard', and my offering is a photo from our honeymoon in the Maldives.

When we first started planning our honeymoon, The Daddy was very keen to go skiing.  We had been for my first trip just after we got engaged and I loved it, but I wasn't sure I wanted to spend my actual honeymoon doing it.  After much persuasion (he doesn't do 'relaxing') we decided on the Maldives and we had a fantastic time.  This was taken on our last morning on the island, on our way to a very early breakfast. A lot of the people we had arrived with were staying for a further two weeks - we were green with envy and very sad to be going home.

Monday, 21 May 2012

Meal Planning Monday

The veg box was raided this morning when it arrived.  I had stupidly mistakenly left it in the hallway and was alerted by extreme silence (always a bad sign) punctuated with rustling noises.  So we now have teeth marks in the carrots and leeks (the latter can't have been very nice raw...)

The ring leader - with possibly the longest carrot I've ever seen!

Sorting out the onions for mummy...

So without further ado, here's what we're having with the contents of the veg box this week (teeth marks included):

  • Roast chicken with jacket potatoes, roast squash and peas  (ok, so technically this was yesterday!)
  • Salmon and broccoli pasta bake (made with garlic and herb philly)
  • Mushroom fried rice (recipe from mamacook, here - looking forward to trying this)
  • Beef Stew (with squash, the huge carrots and the chewed leeks!)
  • Chicken tagine with couscous (this is going to be a guesswork recipe - if it goes well I might post it on here)
I'm linking this up with Mrs M.  

Sunday, 20 May 2012

Being new to blogging

Its been a busy but fun week here at Two of Everything towers.  My brother has been to visit with his lovely wife and four month old baby.  Granted, they didn't stay with us but with my dad round the corner, but we've done things with them most days and I haven't had much time to work on my blog.

I've been trying to get round my head around some technical stuff, like getting a button on my blog to take people to my facebook page.  Not that there's anything on it yet, and it looks a bit pants too.  You would think it would be quite straightforward, but when you don't know your html from your sxd-whatever it is, it is utterly perplexing, and very frustrating.  (Don't even get me started on twitter, I really don't get that yet) I also want to try and make my blog look more appealing too.  Of course the photo I've got on my header is beautiful as it is of my two gorgeousnesses, but the actual photo isn't very good quality (I'm not the best at taking photos, I have a tendency to move my hand when I press the button...)  I go on other blogs which look really beautiful and I get huge blog envy, but I have no idea how to get nice graphics and all that malarkey.

So, with the lack of time and general technical confusions I haven't managed to post anything for ages and now I feel all creatively dried up!

Its really difficult being a newbie in the blogging world.  I wanted to set up this blog so I'd have somewhere to talk about stuff and it would be nice if people would be interested enough to read about it, but actually getting people to notice you takes quite a bit of work and I find it a bit daunting navigating all the different places where people 'meet' and hang out.  And when you actually start writing stuff its a bit like that dream where you go to use a public loo, only to discover when you start your business that there are no walls and everyone can see you.

So this week I'm going to chill out, remember why I wanted to do a blog in the first place, and not worry about flipping facebook buttons...

Monday, 14 May 2012

Meal Planning Monday

My life would be a nightmare without my weekly meal plans, so when I discovered this linky on At Home with Mrs M I felt compelled to join in!

I do my weekly supermarket shopping online and on a Monday I have a veg box delivered from Abel and Cole.  Its always lovely veg and I generally plan meals around what's going to be in the box.  So here are our meals for this week:

  • Wholemeal Pizza (this is a recipe from the fabulous Mamacook - we've already had it and it was delicious, went down a storm!)
  • Fish Pie made with spring onions and spinach (and with peas, from the freezer not the veg box but the babies love them)
  • Veg and bean stew (courgettes, peppers, onions, tomatoes and haricot beans) with rice and grated cheese
  • Beef stew made with shallots, carrots and squash, with baked potatoes (beef shin on offer with A&C this week and it makes lovely stew!)
  • Mushroom and spring onion frittata with potato wedges

I've also made Choc Chip Cookies this week, fingers crossed they'll actually be eaten (you can see my post about these and my recipe for last week's oat and sultana cookies here).  

Sunday, 13 May 2012

Oat and sultana cookies

My children are a little unusual about food.  Don't get me wrong, they eat really well and enjoy a huge range of things.  Little Man particularly likes avocado, broccoli (as in, eat your own quick, or you'll lose it) and roast duck.  For Little Miss its any meat or fish - especially sea bass, salmon and venison stew!!

But they won't eat anything sweet.  Fruit and yogurt is as far as it goes.  I chose not to give them any refined sugar before they were at least one, I decided to make the most of being in control of their diets while I could!  We gave them chocolate for the first time on Easter Sunday.  It was spat out.  On The Daddy's birthday we had some chocolate cake.  This was also spat out, as if it was the food of the devil.  We tried cupcakes at twins group and ice cream at the pub - all rejected.  Now I was getting worried - surely I can't have created children who don't like anything that's slightly less healthy?!!

So I decided to try making some cookies, putting less sugar in than you normally would, to see how they went down.  Well, you couldn't see them for dust, they were gobbled up in double quick time, so I thought I'd put my recipe on here.  Next week I'm trying choc chip cookies - I think I may be pushing it here, but there's only one way to find out (and I'm sure The Daddy won't be disappointed if they don't like them!)

Oat and Sultana Cookies

125g unsalted butter
50g caster sugar
40g soft light brown sugar
1 medium egg, lightly beaten
150g plain flour
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
50g jumbo oats
100g sultanas

Melt the butter (I used the microwave on medium for about 1 1/2 minutes) then beat in both sugars with a wooden spoon.  Beat in the egg.  Sift the flour, cinnamon and baking powder and stir in, then add the oats and sultanas.

Line two baking sheets with baking parchment then put rounded dessertspoonfuls of the mixture on, about 3 cm apart.  Bake in an oven preheated to 190c/Gas Mark 5 for about 10 minutes, until the cookies are a light golden brown.

Leave to cool for a few minutes on the tray, then transfer the cookies to a wire rack to cool completely.  They will keep in a tin for about 5 days (if they last that long!)

Saturday, 12 May 2012

Breast feeding is best?

Isn't it?

When I was pregnant I was adamant I was going to breastfeed my children exclusively, at least for the first 6 months.  There was no swaying me, and I even turned down my mum's offer to buy us a steriliser because I was utterly convinced I wouldn't need it.  Breastfeeding was going to go swimmingly for me and I couldn't understand why anyone would want to use formula when you've got the perfect food for your babies on tap and, what's more, free.  Oh, how I would end up eating my words...

The first setback came when my babies arrived early, at 34 weeks.  I gave birth to them naturally but after about 20 minutes they were taken down to the NICU, initially because they were just so tiny.  One of the paediatricians explained to me they would need to give them some formula so their blood sugar didn't drop but they would start giving them my milk as soon as I could provide it.  I didn't like the sound of it but I agreed because I knew it was important to trust the doctors and they were certainly too tiny to feed.  When I was finally wheeled round to see them (I'd had an epidural) I couldn't believe how tiny they were and it was awful to see them with feeding tubes up their noses and cannulas attached to their tiny little hands.  I knew the best and only thing I could do for them for now was give them my milk.
Little Miss, 6 hours old
Little Man, 6 hours old
Back on the ward I spent ages trying to get one of the midwives to help me hand express.  Finally someone came to me at about midnight (having given birth at 9.40 and 9.52 that morning after a 30 hour labour - I was a little tired and emotional by then) and helped me get two tiny 1ml syringes full of colostrum.  I was very proud of them and took them up to the babies early the next morning.

Later that day one of the midwives suggested setting me up with a pump as I was producing so much colostrum it wasn't worth using syringes any more.  I had to set The Daddy off with the task of tracking down a pump I could use at home and I spent the next week pumping every three hours, day and night, as well as driving half an hour to get to the hospital and back.  When I was visiting I started to feed them myself and they took to it really well, although they still weren't very strong, and when they started asking for food more the nurses offered me a room to stay in, with the babies, so we could get feeding established.  It took two whole weeks of living in a 9ft square cell (it certainly felt like a prison) to get them to the point where they were putting on weight with exclusive breastfeeding.  It didn't go well to start with - we started to get dry nappies and had to resort back to the feeding tubes to top them up.  There are a few photos of me at this time and I literally look grey.  But finally things swung in our favour and we were allowed to go home.

'Rooming in' at the hospital
Those early days at home were good.  The babies would feed for about 15 minutes each every three hours which worked well as they could only latch on to one side so had to take it in turns, and I would then express from the other side (no one looks good with wonky boobs...)  However early evenings were hard as they would cluster feed - not easy with two babies and one boob!  We had a couple of evenings where I would be feeding one baby and rocking the other, screaming, in a moses basket with my foot, while The Daddy fed me my dinner.  One night it reached about 1am, both were screaming and I had been feeding constantly since about 4.30 in the afternoon.  I was exhausted, my 'spare' boob was ready to burst and we had no other way of getting milk into our babies.  I phoned the hospital in desperation, who offered us some teats which we could screw on to the bottles which stored the expressed breast milk.  I then phoned my poor dad who had to drive to the hospital to collect them!  They both downed their bottles of milk and fell asleep and we decided we would start giving them both a bottle at bedtime to draw a line under the cluster feeding.
A milk-drunk Little Miss, 5 weeks old (and an exhausted Mummy!)
It helped, but only a bit.  They both started to feed for longer and didn't seem to be getting enough for them to settle between feeds.  I was desperate to avoid using bottles any more than once a day - I was scared of 'nipple confusion' and them getting lazy because the bottles were easier.  On the night of Christmas Eve I didn't sleep at all.  It was getting awful.  On Christmas Day I phoned a breastfeeding helpline (I was so grateful they were there on Christmas Day!) and they suggested alternating breast and bottle.  I was still having to express from my right side anyway, so it made sense to feed one myself and feed the other with what I had expressed.  But I knew it was the beginning of the end.  The Daddy was due to go back to work and I couldn't fathom how I was going to manage one breastfeed, one bottle feed and one express every three hours.  It just wasn't possible.

Our feeding diary for 24th-25th December.  You can see the evening bottle near the top.  These times were feeds only and don't take into account nappy changes, winding, settling back to sleep and expressing my 'spare' boob!  The Daddy helped as much as he could but unfortunately they haven't managed to get men lactating yet...

I was also starting to get really sore.  Little Man had always had a really strong suck but he was starting to make me feel like he was dislocating my nipple.  I just couldn't take it any more and, after two days of tears, I decided to stop.  The babies were 6 weeks old.  I carried on expressing until my milk supply dropped off and they didn't have any formula until they were 8 weeks old - we had about 3 litres stashed in the freezer!

My babies thrived on formula.  I was able to get them in a routine, I could have people (mainly my Dad) to help me with feeds while they were still too little to feed in bouncers, and they both slept through for twelve hours by 16 weeks old.  

On a pillow, on my lap.  I decided to give this method a miss after Little Miss was sick all over all of  us and I was stuck, covered and unable to clean us up until they'd finished their feed...

This method worked much better, but I learnt to put them either side of me so I could lean against the sofa!

For me, it was the best option, and meant I had the energy to care for two babies all day long by myself.  I still feel guilty about it, no matter how many times people tell me not to.  But I think I made the decision for the right reasons - I was starting to lose the plot, I wasn't enjoying my babies, and I felt like I would never be able to leave the house again!  

So is breastfeeding best?  Not always.

   ShowOff Showcase

Monday, 7 May 2012

That Twin Thing

There is something special about the bond between twins.  I think its inevitable really, growing and developing together from the size of a grain of rice (and smaller - my twins spent a year in a freezer at embryo stage!)

6 weeks old
My babies were born at 34 weeks and were quite tiny - Little Man was 3lb 14 and Little Miss was the whopper at 4lb7.  He was perfectly healthy, he just needed to grow.  But my baby girl was quite poorly - only for a few days, but it felt like an eternity at the time.  She had a pneumothorax (a tiny hole in her lung) which made breathing really hard work and it was getting progressively worse.  Luckily they spotted it and were able to put a chest drain in and ventilate her.  She got better incredibly quickly.  But because there weren't enough spaces in the intensive care unit, Little Man had to be moved into the high dependency unit instead - he just wasn't poorly enough to be in ICU.  They apologised profusely and said they normally do whatever they can to keep twins together, but they were having another very poorly baby admitted and could do nothing else.  I remember following the nurse as she pushed Little Man's incubator through to the room next door, every step we took being the furthest apart they had ever been.  The next few days were incredibly hard as I had to split my time between them in different rooms and it felt horrible they couldn't be together.  But a couple of times they were able to put Little Man in his sister's incubator for a little while.  The effect it had was amazing, they were both so calm and content, and it lasted long after he had been taken back to his own room.  Very soon they were reunited properly and shared a cot for the rest of our stay in the hospital.

When we got home we had to continue this - we tried putting them in separate moses baskets but they were quite unsettled at night.  They shared a cot until they were 6 months old and their heads were nearly touching the sides of the cot!

Our last day in our cot in mummy and daddy's room!
Now they are older their bond continues to grow.  Even with all the space they have to move around the house they can often be found playing with the same things (even if it sometimes means taking things off each other!) and they love waiting at the top of the stairs for the other one to climb up so they can share a kiss!  The other week I had to take Little Man to the doctors, alone - he asked for his sister all the way there and back, pointing at her empty car seat.  When we got home they just fell into each others' arms for cuddles and kisses - I had tears in my eyes!

Cuddles in the supermarket trolley

Sometimes, adult twins stop me when I'm out and about with "I'm a twin!" and go on to tell me how much they loved growing up as a twin, and that they still love it now.  I am so glad my Little People will be able to share this as they grow up, its an amazing thing to be part of.

Sunday, 6 May 2012

A trip to the park - without help!

On Friday I decided to take the Little People to the park.  Alone.  Without help.

I haven't done this before, which I know makes me a bit of a wimp, but I'm always a bit nervous of the unknown where the Littles are concerned.  Finally they can both walk confidently and I really want them to experience the great outdoors a bit more so I need to do it by myself as well as with a helper, which is how we usually manage the park.   It had finally stopped raining for while and although it was a bit chilly it was time for some fresh air.

Off we went in the pushchair with snacks, drinks and nappies (quite how or where I thought I was going to change nappies at the park with the cold wind that was gusting around I have no idea...)  It was a twenty minute walk to the park (I didn't realise how far it was on foot, I haven't been to this one before as it is on a neighbouring, gated, estate and they don't let you use it if you go in the car) so I was ready for a lie down when I arrived but no such luck, there were swings that needed cleaning as the local birds had been using them as toilets.  This seems to be a common problem with baby swing seats as they have somewhere to perch...  So I went to get the wipes out of my bag, only to discover that at some point while I had been getting everybody ready Little Miss had removed them (again).  I found a screwed up tissue in my pocket but that was never going to work, and all the time Little Man was getting more irate, shouting "wee, wee!!!"  This is what he says on the swing, he isn't ready for potty training at 17 months!  There was nothing for it, all I had were the nappies.    I opened two up and put them on the swings - they were a perfect fit and I can recommend this course of action should you ever find yourself in a similar pickle.  So here they are enjoying the swings (I know, you would think I could get at least one of them to look at the camera!):

What's that down there?
And the rocking horse:

Smiles all round!

Little Man actually managed to walk from the swings to here, Little Miss was having none of it though.  He then decided to have a wander - cue slight nervousness, I've heard many stories of twins running in opposite directions in big open spaces!!

The intrepid explorer
But it didn't happen.  We don't do running yet so I'm safe for a while!  There was enough time for another quick go on the swings ("wee, wee!!") and then back in the pushchair with the lure of corn thins:

Ready for the hike home
We saw ducks and moorhens by the pool on the way home and Little Man has now learned to say "quack, quack!"  There were some ducklings hiding under their mummies too but it was clearly a bit too cold for them to venture out which was a pity.  Maybe next time.  Yes, there will be a next time!      

Tuesday, 1 May 2012

Does it ever get easier?

This morning as we left our twins club I watched my friend's 3 year old twin girls racing down the path, the handles of their reins bouncing on the back of their shoes as my friend shouted "slow down! Stop at the gate!"  They didn't stop at the gate, they just kept going.  It got me thinking: does parenting twins ever get easier?

I can remember spending the first 6 months of my Little People's lives wishing the time away, wanting it to get easier and to be honest, once weaning was well under way and they started to drop milk feeds, it did seem to.  Watching one mum this morning made me so grateful that those days have passed.  One of her little girls had slept through the night for the first time, but this meant she had effectively missed a feed and was so hungry she was beside herself.  As her mum tried in vain to get her to take her bottle I thanked my lucky stars that I don't have to deal with that any more.

I think it was when they started to move it got more difficult again.  All of a sudden the house had to be babyproofed to within an inch of its life and stairgates put up to stop babies straying to places where they shouldn't go.  People would suggest tying them together, then at least they would either go in the same direction or stay still.   Hilarious.  One of the many Hilarious Things People Say About Twins (top of the list being "ooh, double trouble" - yeah, like I haven't heard that one before).

This morning as we came out of the children's centre my two headed in different directions, neither towards the waiting pushchair (and I wondered whether this was the point at which to tie them together).  This is a new one for me, as Little Miss has only just decided that walking is quite good, actually.  So this is the latest challenge they have brought for me, and as I watched my friend go chasing after her girls I thought no, it doesn't get easier, it just changes.