As a parent, some days are better than others.
Some days, you feel like it's a miracle that you and your offspring see the sun go down without tearing each other apart; others are cruisy and fun and filled with laughs and cuddles and there's nary a tear to be seen.
Today wasn't either of those, it was somewhere in between, but I've just put Pirate Jim to bed with a definite feeling that, just maybe, I'm getting the hang of parenthood.
We've had a few weeks of struggles with getting PJ to eat his evening meal. I don't want to start horrid habits like eating in front of the telly or chasing him around with a bowl of food, so we've always sat him down with no distractions at about 530 and just focussed. I then cooked the "grownup" meal while Beloved bathed PJ and we ate after he went to bed. (Often in front of the telly, but parents are allowed to be hypocrites after the child is in bed).
Lately this hasn't been working - lots of tantrums, not much food eaten, refusing to stay at the little table. So we decided to bring dinner time back to 6pm, I would cook like crazy when I got home from work and we would all sit down together at the big table. PJ could eat as much as he was willing to put in his own mouth, we would just enjoy the time together.
We've been doing it for about 3 weeks now, with a high level of success. PJ likes to be one of the crowd and is quite willing to join in with what everyone else is doing. He even helps set the table. Eating together has been going quite well.
Tonight I realised how successful about halfway through the meal, as I watched PJ stuffing his dinner into his mouth, the same as ours - prawn, pea and spinach risotto. Last night he very happily shared the vegetable tagine with couscous that I made for our guests.
So, tonight at least, I figure we must be doing something right, if a 21-month old is happy to get into prawn risotto.
Tomorrow, however, is another day!
Happy Mothers Day to all the mums.