It’s a very strange irony but as I adjust – quite happily – to the lack of school in my daily life, Sophie is revelling in her first few days of pre-school.
For me, it’s been a real joy to take her along and experience those new times with her. It’s something that would have been simply impossible had I stayed put.
For her, it’s been a wide-eyed adventure into the unknown and one that apparently she is absolutely loving.
I think most children go through it – that time where your best friend exists in your head but you’re pretty sure they’re actually real.
I remember having one who was not very good at stopping my shots when we played football together – surprisingly – but any other details have long since faded.
As parents it’s important to go along with the pretence, encouraging your child’s social development and including the imaginary friend in everyday life until they get bored with them.
Which may have to be soon for us as with Sophie’s army of pretend pals we’re going to need to do some dramatic upsizing!
Five years ago, London 2012 exploded into our living rooms in a tidal wave of golden hysteria.
Jessica Ennis-Hill, Tom Daley and Laura Trott led the charge as Team GB’s remarkable exploits captured the nation.
As for us, we were sat watching from our new Chorlton living room having made the switch from Lincolnshire’s Grantham to the suburbs of England’s most ambitious city.
And we’ve never looked back since…
It made me feel very old when I realised it’s ten years next month since I did my final university exams.
A lot has happened since then, you could say.
To mark this momentous occasion, I reunited with my housemates and returned to the city of Forest, the Goose Fair and Robin Hood to see if anything had changed…
A handsome bunch of characters back in 2007 – we’re just missing Andy!
When Donald Trump sits down at the end of his first 100 days as US President, he’ll do what countless world leaders have done before him and reflect on his achievements.
He’ll look back at the terror and bigotry he’s inspired and probably think was it worth it? He’ll consider his lowest approval ratings in presidential history and wonder if it’s him or the country that needs to change.
And, just like all those historical leaders, he’ll weigh up if he’s achieved what he wanted to do.
For those of us watching on, his first 30 days have been a car crash. It’s frightening what he might do in the following 70.
Regardless, 100 days seems like a decent time to reflect on what’s happened and as Harry reaches that milestone it’s awe-inspiring to think about what he’s already achieved.
100 days ago he barely opened his eyes, found feeding a trial and did not know anything about the world around him.
Three months on and he’s come a long way.
With the house in lockdown, potty training was gathering pace.
My wife didn’t leave our four walls for three days and Sophie was really getting the hang of it.
Then, chicken pox struck…
Three days into Potty Training.
I’ve not left the house for almost 72 hours.
A lot of blood, sweat and tears has been spilled.
Our little girl is sick to death of the little green toilet we keep asking her to sit on.
But, whisper it quietly, I think we might be getting somewhere.
This time two weeks ago I was in my classroom pondering if paternity leave would ever start.
My wife was a week overdue, I’d unexpectedly returned from half term to my class of children who were just as surprised to see me as I them.
Fourteen days later, amidst the whirlwind of Harry’s arrival and settling down, the time has come for me to return.
And I’m gutted to be saying bye to my family, for the daytimes at least.
The moment we told Sophie back in April she was going to be a big sister was really special.
“Is that OK, Sophie?”
“That’s fine.” Aww.
Since then, we’ve been busily preparing her for the major changes that she would face when her little baby brother or sister arrived on the scene. And she’s been very excited – even if her ideas for baby names consisted merely of “Baby” and “Sophie”. Not particularly original…
We’d always said we wanted her to be the first person aside from us to meet the latest addition to our family.
Tuesday lunchtime, just four and a half hours after he arrived, she got her opportunity…
When I suggested broadcasting my wife’s labour on Facebook Live, I assumed she’d share my opinion that this was staying in touch with current trends.
I thought she’d love it.
Sadly though for those of you who stayed up on Monday night in anticipation, the idea was unequivocally vetoed and this blog post will have to be the next best thing!