Today is my brother’s birthday. Normally that means a weekend of partying for me, but this year has been different as I have a newborn. This year instead I thought of my mum, who 33 years ago (sorry for revealing your age bro ;-)) had a newborn baby alongside 4 and a half year old me. And in 6 weeks time, she would have to start doing the school run with me and a newborn as I would be starting Reception, or Kindergarden as we called it in them days. But she did it, as many mums do, and I don’t know how. The thought of it freaks me out. I’m going to have to take Tyler to school and get ready in the morning with a newborn – how will we do it all in time?!
This morning I had all intentions of taking Tyler out, inspired by this post by The Mummy Adventure. At first I was insanely jealous of Bex whose newborn baby was born on the same day as Honey Nut – how is she still doing days out with her three little boys plus a newborn, going to the beach, going to the woods, let alone just plain looking after the kids, and looking good too! Whereas I was still struggling to do anything with my one boy. But after the initial awe, I was actually inspired. Why wait until Honey Nut was a bit bigger to do days out (as I was planning) – summer is NOW, and this is Tyler’s last summer hols before big school. So I ordered an Amawrap sling at 4am, and decided I would take us on the train to Windsor in the morning as he’d been asking me to go for ages.
We didn’t actually get up until 9.30am and I tried to get us ready but although Honey Nut sleeps really well as night, in the day she wants constant feeds and then cries and cries until I get her to burp. Everytime I put her down, I had to pick her up again. By the time we’d had breakfast and I’d showered and was ready, it was 1pm! (So there’s my worry about how on earth we’ll get to school on time!)
Anyway, she was asleep so I said to Tyler, come on, let’s go quickly while she’s sleeping. He was so happy! “YES! I can’t wait to go on the little blue train!” So off we went, him skipping all the way from our flat to the station, all along the platform to our 1.40pm train to Windsor. We did it!
Honey Nut slept on the way, and at Windsor we went into Daniels toy department like we usually did and Tyler played on the Brio train table.
We were there a good half hour when Honey Nut started stirring and needed her next feed. I remembered Daniels had a feeding room so we went in there and I fed Honey Nut in a private room that had rocking armchairs. Oh my god, the chairs were so comfy, really supported my back, I wish I had one at home now!
Afterwards Tyler looked at all the Hornby trains, played in the Lego area before we headed back for the 3.20pm train home.
Honey Nut was awake on the way back, and her eyes widened when she heard the sound on the train (so cute!), but then halfway through the 6-minute journey, she started bawling her eyes out! I felt so self conscious and flustered but the people on the train were lovely and going ‘aw’ and stuff, so I realised it doesn’t matter if she cries, people understand. By the time we were home, she was fast asleep after all that!
So I can tick ‘Train to Windsor’ off our list, and it’s something we can easily do again now I feel more confident.
And it got me thinking of the other things I’d like to do with Tyler and Honey Nut this summer. Some simple ones on our own, others with my husband who has taken a week off in August:
- Walk to the local playground
- Bekonscot Model Village
- Didcot Railway Centre
- Fruit/Veg Picking at Copas Farm
- Walk along the river and see the swans at Windsor
- Visit the Malt Shovel and watch canal boats at Cowley
- Splash in the paddling pool in my parents’ garden
- Trainspotting at Reading Station
I think that’s plenty there. We’ve already been going to Activus Soft Play on Fridays, so will carry on doing that.
Being realistic, I know we won’t get to the seaside as we live nowhere near, but I know we’ll visit when Honey Nut is older. We could visit Black Park for a woodlands walk, so that’s an option too.
What have you got planned for summer? Do you have experience with taking your older child/children out whilst having a newborn? And do you have any tips on doing the school run with a newborn?