Tag Archives: Tiddler

Birthday Interview with Tiddler 2014

Tiddler is four.  This is his very belated birthday interview.  You can read last year’s interview here.

What would you like to be when you grow up?

A daddy

What kind of job would you like to do when you are a grown-up?


What’s your favourite colour?


What’s your favourite book?

I know that – every book

What are your favourite toys?

Kipper and Seddon teddy

What is your favourite food?

Pasta and pizza and peas and ketchup

What is your favourite thing to wear?

Smart shirts and pyjamas

What do you like doing with mummy?

Cuddling and doing the washing up

What do you like doing with daddy?

Helping him tidy up the playroom

What makes you happy?

A cuddle

Tell me a joke

What does an apple say when a window goes to his house?  Oh it’s not a joke, just let me in!

Birthday interview with Tiddler

Tiddler is three.  This is his birthday interview (a little late because we were on holiday.)

What would you like to be when you grow up?

A grown-up

What kind of job would you like to do when you are a grown-up?

Doing lunch

What’s your favourite colour?


What’s your favourite book?

Topsy and Tim – Red Boots Yellow Boots

What are your favourite toys?

Cars, cars, cars!

What is your favourite food?


What is your favourite thing to wear?

My George dressing up costume

What do you like doing with mummy?

Helping mummy

What do you like doing with daddy?

Making some stuff and a cake

What makes you happy?

Sprinkles on my cake and jelly tots on my cake and chocolate buttons on it and icing on it

Tell me a joke

Why did the apple go to the doctor’s?  Because it was running round the house. (He made this one up all by himself!)

Extended breastfeeding

Tiddler is two.  He’s a happy little person most of the time, but sometimes he has tantrums, especially when he’s tired.  It’s normal.  Often when this happens, I take the easiest option, which is to offer him a breastfeed.  This evening, he was sitting on Granny’s lap listening to stories for a long time and was tired and ready to sleep.  However, he didn’t think so, and when I tried to take him to bed he pulled out all the stops for the loudest tantrum ever.  I offered to feed him as usual, and he refused which I knew he would until he started to calm down.  So I sat with him and held him and when he paused for breath I offered the choice to feed or go to bed.  I repeated the offer a couple of times before he decided to opt for the breastfeed.  He did try his luck by asking for a lollipop (he had one at the hairdresser’s yesterday) before settling down to feed.  Within five minutes he was fast asleep.

Being able to calm Tiddler down so quickly is good for me, and Suburban dad is an enthusiastic supporter of extended breastfeeding for the same reason.  But more importantly it is good for Tiddler.  He is the only one of my four babies to have continued breastfeeding after the age of two, and I feel sad when I look back on all the unnecessary tears and tantrums the others had at this stage.  It’s normal that they happen, but with the benefit of breastfeeding, peace can be restored more easily and unnecessary distress is avoided.

I have mentioned extended breastfeeding in passing before, and thought I might get round to writing a more detailed post about it sometime.  However, it’s late and I’m tired and I can’t organise my thoughts, so it turns out this is just another random musing on the topic again rather than anything more thorough.  I suppose I just feel that I’m very very lucky, and so is Tiddler, and I wish that I’d known at the start of my parenting journey what I know now.  I also feel sad that the prevailing view of our culture, which condemns breastfeeding older babies and toddlers, makes parenting harder than it needs to be.

Play dough creations

It’s been a busy few weeks and I haven’t been blogging much, but it’s time to get back to normal.  I will post something about our holidays another day, but for now I am too tired.  So I thought I would just share some pictures of today’s play dough creations.  Monkey, Rabbit and Tiddler were happily occupied for a long time, and they insisted on photographs being taken, so here they are.

Monkey and Rabbit’s Thomas scene

Tiddler’s creation

Monkey’s Pizza, Spaghetti and a Strawberry

Rabbit’s Ice Creams

Ecology Centre visit

On Wednesday afternoon we went to the local Ecology Centre with our Home Ed group.  Owl was in London with Granny and Grandpa, so I only had the younger three children with me.  However many children you have, it always feels a little easier with one less person to organise to get out of the house, although there were moments when I could have done with my biggest helper.  Anyway, we gathered an assortment of fishing nets, buckets, pond life and butterfly identification books, raincoats… and suncream as an afterthought.  We also took our butterflies as we had decided to show them to the group before releasing them in the grounds of the Ecology Centre, which is a perfect butterfly habitat.

We took about 25 minutes to walk there and we met up with the others at the pond.  All the children were very keen to start fishing, and were generally good about sharing nets and were being quite sensible.  To begin with Tiddler was in his buggy, but of course that didn’t last as he was determined to get out and join in.  So I let him, and the consequence was that within 5 minutes, he had fallen in the pond!  Luckily I was holding on to the handle on the back of his Little Life backpack (highly recommended) so I was able to haul him out straight away.  No harm done, but even though he had been in the water for barely a second he was of course thoroughly soaked from head to toe (vest, nappy, trousers, socks and boots completely unusable for the rest of the afternoon) and covered in pond weed.  He was a little bewildered but not too upset.  Now, if this had happened to my first baby, I would of course have had an enormous change bag full of alternative outfits, but he is my fourth.  So he was carrying his own spare nappies in the aforementioned backpack, and that was it.  Luckily the nappies hadn’t got wet, and the sun came out so we made do with a quick clean up, an application of suncream which I hadn’t expected to need and a clean dry nappy.  He ran around very happily in the sunshine for the rest of the afternoon, although his feet did get a bit scratched.

The children had a lovely time fishing, exploring and bug hunting.  We had some amazing close encounters with pond skaters, sticklebacks, pond snails, a leech, newts, frogs, toads, a slow worm, a moorhen and chick, dragonflies and damselflies… and we released our butterflies, who were not at all in a hurry to leave us, so we got a really close look at them. My highlight of the afternoon was watching one of the butterflies sipping nectar from clover, seeing the proboscis uncurled so close up was amazing. I have to admit that the sight of Tiddler covered in pond weed came a close second (bad mummy!)

Extended breastfeeding and the art of conversation

We’ve been having a quiet week at home so far, with Rabbit off Pre-school with a sickness bug.  She’s fine now, and the children have enjoyed extra unstructured time to play together which has been interesting to watch.  There has been lots of imaginative play, some good sharing and co-operation, wonderful if messy creativity, and reasonable attempts at clearing up after themselves.  I must admit I can’t report exactly what it has all been about.  We’ve done some Maths at the start of each day but then I’ve mainly left them to their own devices while I’ve attempted to catch up with housework.  In the afternoons, they have been doing Reading Eggs, Mathletics and Spellodrome, and a lot of playing in the garden.  The big boys have also been to Beavers this evening and had a tennis lesson which they really enjoyed.

Tiddler has been joining in more and more with everything the older ones do – he has even been demanding the right to “do Maths”!  His speech has also suddenly moved on again, with lots more sentences now.  When daddy left for work one day, he said “I want to go and look out window” and there have been lots more like that.  He also tries to join in every conversation, and copies everything he hears.  He’s been asking to sing certain songs over and over again, and is obviously trying hard to learn them.  He loves “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star”, and joins in loudly with the bits he knows, especially “WHAT YOU ARE”. He also likes “The Wheels on the Bus”, shouting “ALL DAY LONG” with great enthusiasm.

The strangest conversation I have had with him today occurred during his evening breastfeed.  There has been a lot of debate about extended breastfeeding recently, and I haven’t really commented on it yet.  Maybe I’ll do a serious post about it sometime…Anyway, this evening, he kept stopping to tell me something which was very important but I couldn’t understand it at first.  It was something about monkeys and dinosaurs outside, and then he started saying “Ribbit ribbit said the frog”  which he told me was at Granny’s house.  He then said there was a frog and a fox (no doubt about which Granny he was thinking of) and the fox was having breakfast.  He carried on feeding for a while and then stopped to tell me that the fox had porridge for breakfast, with honey, and some water.  Having communicated this important message, he was happy.  I could feel his satisfaction at knowing enough words to be able to tell such a long story.  I love this stage of development (I think I say that about every stage!) – it’s so interesting to find out what is going on in their funny little heads.  It cheered me up anyway!


If Tiddler could write and I asked him to blog his favourite bedtime story, this would be it.  He can’t just yet (home ed kids may be advanced, but he has only just turned two) so I’ll have to do it for him.

Tiddler was given this book as a birthday present by his Godparents and he loved it so much that it has been essential bedtime reading ever since, and sometimes before his afternoon nap too.  His word for bunny is “funny” which can be a little confusing.  If you forget to read him the book at bedtime, he can be seen with his best cross face on shouting “Funny! Funny!” in a tone of voice which implies that forgetting his book is anything but.

The book has appealing illustrations and simple rhyming text, both of which are somewhat upstaged by the star of the show, a wonderfully soft and very cute bunny rabbit puppet, which toddlers will love to cuddle as they listen to the soothing story.


Tiddler is our two-year old, and it is also the name of a book that we love.  Written by Julia Donaldson and illustrated by Axel Scheffler, Tiddler is a wonderfully rhythmic, rhyming story, perfect for reading aloud.  Tiddler is a little fish who is always telling stories.  No-one believes him, but one day when he is in trouble his trail of stories helps him find his way home.  The detailed illustrations of so many different sea creatures are very appealing, and for those who are already familiar with The Gruffalo, also by Donaldson and Scheffler, there is a Gruffalo fish to look out for as well.

Tiddler, The Story-Telling Fish. Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler, 2007.