Long time readers of my blog might remember that I used to write monthly “Amy Watch” updates when Amy was a baby but they petered out around the age of two and a half. I guess the milestones became more spread out and I felt that I was repeating myself a little. But today, on her fifth birthday, I thought it might be nice to revisit the idea . . .
Now of course, as every mother says on their child’s birthday, I don’t really know where the time has gone. It doesn’t seem five minutes since I was holding that tiny new born with a shock of dark wavy hair and recovering from my third c-section in four years. But here we are, that tiny baby is now a tall, blonde haired and very smiley little girl.
Friends and Family
Amy has always been very much a Mummy’s girl and this continues to be the case. I think mostly this is due to the fact she has had considerably more of my undivided attention than either of the other two did due to my working arrangements meaning that I’ve been at home with her far more and her November birthday affording her an extra year before she started full time school. Of course Ben and Chloe both had a new baby around their second birthdays to take my attention whereas Amy has always been “the baby”. Amy absolutely adores her big brother and sister and luckily the feeling is mutual – they get a bit frustrated with her sometimes but mostly they are pretty patient and Ben in particular is good at helping her out with things she finds tricky – shoe laces, fastening her seat belt etc.
Amy is a super sociable little lady and people often comment on her bright, happy nature. She will chat to anyone who will listen to her and is always happy to make new friends. If you ask her who her best friend is she will tell you it’s Amelie, a friend from playgroup who now goes to a different school so they rarely see each other any more. Amy and Erin are increasingly close, often holding hands to walk to school and chatting. I don’t think they particularly play together at school as they are in different years but at home they love each other to bits. She is friends with quite a few boys at school – I think because they are the older ones in the year so they’ve moved into their new class together so it’s as much about familiarity as anything.
Amy started full-time school in September and has coped with the transition really well. She misses her Nursery teacher terribly but loves her new teacher too. I had worried that she would struggle with the long days, especially as she was still having an afternoon sleep at least once a week when she was in Nursery. However, she’s slotted into her new routine far better than I had expected – another benefit of her being almost a full year older than Ben and Chloe when they started Reception I think.
Her teacher said she’s a mix of both Ben and Chloe – she’s not quite as focused as Chloe and sometimes needs reminding not to chat – but as I said to her teacher, Chloe was a Year 1 in an R / Y1 class whereas Amy is a Reception child in an R / Y1 class. Her reading is coming on really well and she’s really enjoying starting to write more and sounding things out. Recently there’s been a few things which have really impressed us in terms of her maths, things like working out how many more knives she needed when setting the table at Granny’s or Ben teaching her successfully to read 3 digit numbers when we were driving to Leeds last week!
In the last few weeks Amy has achieved both her 5m badge at Swim Academy and completed Stage 1 of her Swim Academy lessons so she will move up to the next class this week.
Amy has always, always, always sucked her thumb. I really don’t have a problem with her sucking her thumb at all – she gets great comfort from it and I’m down with that. I know at some point we need to stop her so she doesn’t have issues with her teeth (and this something we’ve started to discuss with her) but for now thumb sucking is fine by me. Unfortunately along with sucking her thumb, Amy used to twirl her hair with her other hand. This was fine till she started making hulking great knots in it which had to be carefully combed out with coconut oil or occasionally even cut out. Her hair weakened and she started to pull the knots out herself and hide them down the side of her bed or under her pillow. This culminated in her having very little hair left on the left side of her head. We tried everything from giving her cuddly toys or fabric to hold in her hand to putting a big welly sock on over her pjs at bedtime – each time we thought we’d cracked it and her hair would start to grow back, she’d slip back into the habit. This is something that went on for a couple of years – we eventually broke the habit by popping eczema sleeves on under her pjs and then a welly sock on over the top of her pjs to stop her taking everything off again. We cut a whole in the right hand sleeve to allow her to still suck her thumb as it felt a bit mean to try and break both habits at once!
But, it would seem Amy is a creature of habit and for the second time in her little life, we found ourselves with an everlasting scab on her nose. Now I can’t remember what she actually did to hurt her nose but I know she had a sore nose as far back as May this year and it has only just healed in the last couple of weeks. The problem is that whilst sucking that thumb of hers, she picks and scratches at the scab on her nose, preventing it from healing and actually making it far worse than it ever was in the first place. Again we tried everything we could think of, putting a plaster on it didn’t work as she just picked that off again, I painted her thumb with that horrible stuff to stop you biting your nails but that didn’t really work either. We praised her, bribed her, distracted her and got cross with her but nothing worked. I was so worried that it would get infected or she’d end up with a nasty scar. Eventually we bought new sleeves and stopped her sucking her thumb at night – telling her she could have her thumb back when her nose was better . . . I bought teeny tiny clear plasters from Boots which were much softer and more comfortable than normal plasters and convinced her to leave them on all day and after about a week of keep her nose covered up it finally healed enough that she couldn’t open the wound up anymore and now it’s completely better. I can’t tell you how relieved I am.
So bad habits . . . she’s had a few. For now I’m keeping those sleeves on her at night!
Health and Physical Development
Amy doesn’t cope well with being hungry – so much so that I actually took her to the GP earlier this year as I was worried that she might be showing early signs of being diabetic. She had a couple of blood tests and all was well so the GP thinks it was probably just to do with her growing quickly. If she hasn’t eaten recently she can go quite pale and tired or get very grumpy but we’ve learned to make sure she has more snacks and if she’s in a mood we are more aware of thinking about when she last ate!
On the whole Amy is a pretty healthy little soldier, she’s had a couple of days off school for sick bugs and gets the old cold or two but, *touch wood*, she’d doing really well at the moment!
I think she’s pretty tall for her age – she’s been wearing age 5-6 clothes for quite a while now – I’m not sure when we last measured her though!
Amy loves being with her friends and family, cuddles (especially with Mummy) and being silly with Daddy. She likes to watch films over and over again. She loves to sing the Greatest Showman soundtrack, she’s a fan of The Wombats and Biscuithead and the Biscuit Badgers. She loves sleeping in hotels and going on adventures. Her favourite tea is chicken nuggets, chips and tomato sauce. She loves cows (especially “normal ones” – by which she means Friesians). She loves to play with her dolls and is constantly role playing. Her favourite colour is orange and she likes a cup of tea – but only really when Granny makes it for her!
Not So Favourite Things
Amy isn’t a fan of being in trouble, not getting her own way, brushing her teeth or spicy food.
I always used to finish my Amy Watch posts with a comment about her crazy hair!
Now that she has finally stopped twiddling her hair and pulling it out, it has grown back pretty well and for the most part you wouldn’t be able to tell. If you were really looking, or touching her hair, you’d know that it’s still much thicker on one side than the other. I’ve always said that I wanted to cut Amy’s hair into a proper little bob but haven’t been able to do it whilst her hair was wonky – tying it up made it far less obvious and also made it trickier for her to fiddle with. Her hair is quite long and grows really fast but we’ve decided that now is the time to get it cut – not just because I think it will really suit her but because it will help to even it out again! So . . . watch this space!
Happy 5th Birthday Amybo, we love you all the world!
(If you want to read the original #AmyWatch posts – you’ll find them all here)
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