Fathers be Mothers for a Day

 

IMG_4451Mothers Day in this house means the only day in the year that the husband attempts to fill my very large shoes. I am pretty sure he secretly dreads the burden of this day. It is the only day of the year that I don’t have to pre agree a lay in, the only day of the year for me that this is a given. The only day of the year, I do everything at an extremely slow pace and utter to words “Go ask Daddy”, “Daddy will help”. The only day of the year he shoots me with the death stares and says;”I Fucking hate you”, under his breath. The tables have turned and I cruelly relish in every moment, because Mothers day for me, is a small insight into a mans world.

Being an onlooker at this thing called fatherhood, I played out what I think this role may look like. For example this morning I had a lay in, had breakfast and a full cup of HOT tea in bed. I then kindly pointed out to the husband when I have smelt something suspicious and watched him gag and moan about the never ending pooey nappies. Poor old Cinders, aka Daddy Pig has had to wash up after breakfast, go on a dummy hunt and remember teeth and hair brushing. Poor old Daddy Pig has also had to have breakfast last, shower last and even ask Mummy Pig to watch the kids whilst he takes a shit!

Mummy Pig has enjoyed her lay in, eating some of Daddy Pigs homemade pancakes and opening all of the homemade cards, where one even read; “I hope that you become queen”! Little does my lovely eight year old know, I am already the queen of this household.

So the Queen watched the King in training, look overwhelmed by the amount of paraphernalia by the door which required packing into the car before setting off on our journey to the beach. The Queen also cleverly shouted out her requests by rewording them to helpful questions like “Have you got the blankets?”, “Have you got their dummys?”, just so she could watch the King stressfully nip in and out of every room and up and down the hallway in blind panic as he clearly questioned “Have I got everything?”.

The Queen is used to running a tight schedule however today and all set for Southwold we were clearly on the Kings time. The King had forgotten about lunchtime in 20 minutes time, and the journey is at least one hour and thirty minutes in length to the beach. The clearly inexperienced King informed the hopeful Queen that despite going for a picnic he hadn’t yet purchased any items for the picnic! Some time later, the Queen noticed that the route chosen by the King was through town and avoiding all main roads. “I thought you would like the scenic route” announced the amateur King! Bless, how sweet thought the Queen but at the same time she started to think that the amateur King was a bit of a dimwit. Firstly, no clue as to what to pack and then secondly leaving so close to lunchtime with no prepared picnic and thirdly adding precious time onto what could be hangry hell!

Well fuck me, he pulled it off with three portions of quite possibly the best fish and chips in Suffolk followed by £20 worth of every item of picnic food and even Ella’s Kitchen squeezey pouches for the small one. No one cried, screamed or did a poonami. The King’s apprenticeship has come to an end and he has passed with a distinction, its fair to say.

We had a very chilly Mothers Day walk along Southwold beach today , a wee play in the sand with the mad ones JCB diggers, a few attempts at some pictures with Iphones that kept dying and a Costa on route home in the car! Not to mention they all slept all the way home!! I’m not sure these are my children, but don’t tell anyone because Id like to keep these little darlings!

Mothers Day is quite an affair for those mothers with other half’s. It could be called “Fathers be Mothers for a Day”. For those single mothers, hats off as always because I don’t know if they ever really get a well deserved day off. For army wives too, hats off to you, especially when they have the added worry of a husband on tour. For lesbian couples also, Id like to ask, “Who actually looks after the kids?”, surely someone loses out on a day off? I don’t know, but what I do know, is I am glad I am this Mother, in this household, with this husband, my very own KING!

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Hopelessly Devoted to my Boobs

IMG_2899That is Ruby for sure. Ruby sure is a stubborn little girl and quite similar to her older sister in terms of defiance. Ruby, still on the god dam boobie, clearly did not appreciate the efforts Mummy and Daddy had gone to in an attempt to escape the mad house on Saturday evening. These wonderful humans, had planned a babysitter two months in advance, had ensured all three children were fed before leaving the house and Mummy had even painfully pumped 5oz of breast milk for the occasion. Not to mention ordered two 80s themed outfits from Amazon and paid a high price to ensure delivery was on time.

Frenchy and Bettlejuice are an unlikely pair, and perfecting ones ghost like appearance took far less time than it did for Frenchy to shower, shave, paint toe nails and find a non breastfeeding bra! Frenchy was fortunate enough to have a sister who owns half of MAC and is competent in contouring to work her magic on her very tired and slightly crinkled face! With one hour to get ready, between feeding and bath time, many swear words were shouted between Frenchy and Beetlejuice, which was almost as scary as the amount of leg hair left in the bath.

Beetlejuice agreed to drive, but not on the promise of marriage to Frenchy because she was already unfortunate enough to be married to the old ghost but on the promise of something more sinister ; )! In good old Frenchy fashion, she was far too consumed by the possibility of reuniting with her old pal alcohol to truly grasp by what he meant!

Earlier that day, Beetlejuice had rather stupidly said in front of the 8 year old that he was looking forward to “getting fruity” later that evening. Quick thinking Frenchy, agreed that if he was “feeling fruity”, she loudly announced she would purchase him a Caprisun!

So after one, tight hour of pruning, Frenchy and Beetlejuice, had a spare few minutes to take the above photograph before leaving the house half an hour late to the party. On arrival Frenchy was met by the incredible looking 30 year old Sandy and her very cute 3 year old Danny. Sandy was actually married to Indiana Jones, and her parents were a giant banana and Fred Flintstone, it was all rather confusing for a somewhat easily confused Frenchy.

Anyway, the unlikely pair, Frenchy and Beetlejuice, attempted to forget about their parenting woes and ordered two alcoholic beverages. After one hour of discussing who’s outfits looked the most awesome and ridiculous, Frenchy checker her phone…phew no messages, so she ordered another drink.

After some pork in a bun (no, not a euphemism), and a few slurps of a G & T the phone is checked again. It reads the following:-

Wont settle 21:00

Can’t sit down 21.01

Wont take it 21.01

Hello? 21.23

I’ve now defrosted the other milk to see if shel take that 21.23

Followed by a picture of her wide awake.

FFS. Now back into mum mode, I am firstly pissed off by the second text ‘Cant sit down’, oh cry me a river! Secondly, I am annoyed that I am only two drinks in, best dressed has not been announced and the cake hasn’t been cut! I never miss out on cake!

Two phone calls later and waiting another half hour on tender hooks, we both decide to throw the towel in and head home, to an apparently screaming baby! In pure third baby laid back fashion, we took our time, driving through McDonalds before actually heading home!!! Ironically on the way home, we drove past what is known locally as the ‘Fun bus’. The ‘Fun Bus’ is the last bus home from town to our even smaller nearby town, which as a drunk teenager I used to get with my friends. The highlight of those kind of nights was definitely my friend throwing up in her hands and being forced to swallow it to avoid getting thrown off! Risky!

Now I smile at my grown up sensible self, devouring a Mc Chicken Sandwich meal like I hadn’t just eaten an hour earlier!

Just as we approach our village I get a ping of texts, which read the following:-

She finally asked 22.50

Asleep 22.50

Be very quiet when u come in 22.50

FFS! After three hours of refusing the bottle and screaming her little head off she got so tired and fed up that she fell asleep! Well we were home now I thought so no point turning back. I also wanted to take off the ridiculous Wonderbra which once fitted my tiny non breastfeeding boobies and unload my MOUNTAIN of milk! Good night! The husband did however win the best dressed, but the prize was a free bar for the rest of the evening, however he was driving! There’s only so much coke you can drink!

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“Shout out to my friends, your really quite the best”

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What a week already. I have been fortunate enough to see lots of mummy friends already this week and share our love of ‘moaning’, because ‘us’ women love nothing better than to moan, right?! I have also managed about 5 full cups of HOT tea, a Costa (where number two kicked off royally) and even painted my toe nails! That is quite some week already!

After having a mummy meltdown on Monday due to a lack of sleep and hormonal hell, things are now much better after talking to my mum friends who don’t pretend parenting is a wonderful walk in the park. It is about as refreshing as a vodka, lemonade and lime (my ‘old’ tipple) to hear the words, “Don’t you just wake up in the morning and think this is shit”. Followed by, “Don’t you look at your partner and hate them for going out to work”. Followed by “Food shopping alone, is my ME time”.

I can relate to all three of those statements, and I hope you can too! Don’t get me wrong, some mornings I wake up so exhausted than when I went to bed so I often feel glad I don’t have to go to work! Especially on days like these lovely sunny ones we have been treated too recently, I am uber grateful that I am on maternity leave and able to do whatever I like with the children. It is however just a few days, where I am uttering, “FML, Kill me now, not this shit again…”.

My week so far started with food shopping at Aldi at 9am on Monday morning, Ugh! But the sun was shining so I was in a good mood, and decided against the baby group so I could instead spend time in the garden with number two and three. Number three, enjoyed commando crawling on the grass in the sun whilst number two enjoyed pissing about with the water butt and kicked off when I said “NO” to him playing with a rusty saw. I no, right? I am evil.

Tuesday was my cleaning day, but I had planned to meet friends in town at Costa. So I rushed around cleaning what I could before I left the house, leaving a baby swing and Toy Story 2 to babysit the little ones. Just as I arrived in town and parked the car number two demanded to walk. I of course gave in for a quiet life, and balanced shopping for a few bits with a huge double buggy which now seemed unnecessary and a very fast Maddox on his Little Life reins. Shopping for cards in WH Smith was a little tricky, he kept saying “Monkey” and pointing at a toy Gruffalo until he spotted “Trickle”. I of course gave in again and purchased one bag of unnecessary mini eggs, just so I could entice him back into the buggy and hurry things up a little.

I thought I would be clever and arrive at Costa earlier than my friends to get a good table and feed two hangry kids. The table and the feeding plan worked well, however amusing one small boy with a bag full of toys did not. It started with a moan that the motorbike he had been playing with had got stuck under the sofa, he banged his head six times on the table trying to retrieve it and he also refused to eat anything shouting “YUCK” at everything that was offered. After about thirty minutes he got my coat and said “Come on mummy, come on”, he was fed up but also very tired after walking everywhere. I resorted to strapping him in the buggy like a terrible mum just so I could finish my half conversation with my friend and gave him his dummy to lessen the moaning! I shit you not, he fell asleep within minutes, that shit never happens! Then Ruby decided she would continue to arch her back and make mummy look all awkward and incompetent. I decided Ruby could join her brother and in the buggy she went! However her acrobatics lately are quite something, so after getting her to bend in the middle, I finally strapped her in and rocked her back and forwards to sleep. By which time, my two childless friends on their precious lunch hour had to get back to work and that was the end of that!

Wednesday, I actually managed a group despite feeling ridiculously tired after another crappy nights ‘sleep’, well…if you can call it that. I met my friend and her little boy at a baby group who is slightly nuttier than my little number two which pleases me somewhat as this kid eats everything at group; from crayons, to playdough and occasionally paint despite having a zillion allergies, he gives his poor mum mini heart attacks everywhere she goes. He is also a climber, one minute he is there and the next minute he is up a book shelf! I love that kid, he does it all with a smile too! After the group I walked to that very healthy shop they call ‘Greggs’, grabbed two sandwiches (the ones in the healthy bit), followed by two lucozades and some doughnuts and headed to my friends. My friends daughter had turned one recently, and I felt we needed to celebrate the fact she was still alive and my friend hadn’t lost her shit completely with some sugar! After a few hours of endless nattering and number two had squashed enough wotsits into the furniture and emptied every toy box, we thought we would leave their house resembling a burglary and go home to a tidy house (for once) with one sleeping child! Winner Winner, it was not chicken for dinner, but chilli.

Which brings me to, today Thursday, it is actually rare that I know what day of the week it is. I only know what day it is by the children’s clubs/activities because I don’t really have a social life of my own anymore but this week, so far, has made me feel like I have. “Shout out to my friends, you re really quite the BEST!” (in a Little Mix singing voice).

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Nostaligic Parenting

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The baby walker is officially down from the loft, washed, dusted and ready to roll with the third child in mind. However the excitement from number twos face suggested he had other ideas. As soon as we placed little Ruby in her ‘new’ walker, number two pointed at her and said “Tuddle mummy”. I replied “No mummy doesn’t want to tuddle Ruby”. So then number two pointed again at Ruby in the walker and looked at daddy and said “Tuddle Daddy”. Daddy replied, “No Maddox, Daddy doesn’t want to tuddle Ruby”! Once more number two persisted and pointed again to Ruby in the walker and said to his sister, “Immie tuddle”! Immie just laughed! It was clear to see someone had missed these wheels, despite having a thousand other wheels on every ride on you can imagine, every type of vehicle and even a ride on lion. That did not matter as this was the only ride he wanted now!

His excited little face when he finally got to jump in there was priceless and it got me thinking about all the fun he used to have in there at the exact same age. Since they are fifteen months apart it isn’t actually that long ago! The chunks out of the skirting board and scuffed walls are still there for all to see. I used to curse that the reason he didn’t crawl at six months and say it was because he was in that walker all to often, when in fact he was just later at reaching some milestones than his sister.

His eldest sister, number one also used the same walker, when it was brand spanking new and actually had batteries in the activity bit! The first child always gets the best of everything and I probably even replaced a few batteries in her toys as they ran out. Oh not, not now, we instead enjoy what peace we can get from not so noisy toys!

In fact poor hard done by number one, had to roll around in her walker on carpet, what graft that must have been! She also had far less space to roam around in, as we used to have the worlds smallest kitchen a hallway and a living room. Number two and three will continue to benefit from bungalow living, hard floors and one very, fun and long hallway to ride up and down in. I will however continue to swear about how bastard hard one level living is. Don’t get me started on the hovering and the places you can find a toothbrush! Third world problems right?

So from one well loved and well used walker, which is probably the best part of £50 quid well spent, I started to feel sad about the phases we are kissing goodbye to as they grow. With number three its all happening so fast again, something last night got me thinking about her labour (see previous post on birth stories for more) and it got me thinking about how quick that all happened and now the last six months have flown by!

Because number one is older there is a lot to be sad about as so much has gone already! Her crawling was much like Ruby’s; commando to start with, and I remember the first time she walked how choked up the husband and I were! Though I also look back and cringe a bit about the first time parents we were! We  that badge so well! Our child was the best behaved, the cleverest, the prettiest….well she was just everything better than yours! All because she was ours! Each new phase first time around is so new and exciting and also equally daunting. All my previous Facebook status’ were about all the new things she was doing and how much I loved her! I am sure I would cringe a bit if I read them now!

Poor Ruby, I haven’t even told the world of Facebook that she is even crawling! Bloody crime or what? And well Maddox, has been our little whirlwind! The child we wanted for so long, our rainbow baby and we struck gold! He is a fucking nutter, there are two ways about it. Being our only boy, he is special but he is also a little character, once seen never forgotten! I feel sad about how quickly he has grown and I feel like I’ve missed a lot of it, due to being pregnant when he was 6/7 months old then struggling with grief. He teaches himself more than I teach him, some of it is because I am so busy but also a lot of it is because his nature is so inquisitive! He has reminded me how I love this age (2 and 3). I may regret saying that as we haven’t hit the terrible twos as yet. Although, he kicks off quite easily and gets frustrated over the smallest things, some of which I feel is his age but also his nature! I think he is much like me as a child! I was termed ‘the difficult one’! He isn’t difficult, just challenging (or is that PC for saying a bit of a shit?!), but I secretly quite enjoy his challenges, as we are learning how to parent him, his way!

God I’ve gone on a bit, I apologise for that! But what I am simply trying to say in a round about way, is they are all so different, but growing up just as fast. I am missing the stages that they have gone through and feeling nostalgic about it whilst swearing about the stage they are all at now! I cannot understand half the words number two is saying at the moment and it frustrates him also. Number one is so hormonal and stroppy I don’t know what to do with her sometimes and number three hasn’t slept through the night yet, not even once! HELP! Where is the manual, and also where is the time machine!?

 

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Competitive Parenting

1988I thought I would never be one of ‘those’ pushy parent types but its like an itch you just have to scratch, again and again! At first it started with crawling, then walking, to sounds, words and colours. But now competitiveness harvests its ugly and unwanted self at sports day, our annual ‘best dressed pumpkin’ event and even homework projects! I am ashamed to admit it because its so not who I thought I would be. Today was one of those days, as both the husband and I were stood on a school field for a cross-country event for under 9s screaming  both like a fishwife “COME ON…you can do it Immie”.

Combined with the husband and I saying “Shit, she has taken the whole pace yourself too literally, and she is at the back of the line…she will never win now…do something”! This then spurted on the husband to move further up the field to shout some more ‘encouragement’! Shameless! And when she did in fact lose, I was all like “Well done sweetheart, I am so proud of you and you had such a bad cold” but was thinking, you could have ran faster, I saw you stop like twice, FFS! I am going to hell!

Whereas the husband was like, “Well done” but I could tell he was really like, “We will discuss this later”, which means he will politely tell her in some rather tactful way that she could have tried harder! Again awful, we are the WORST!

Last year when Immie, our number one child, ran for sport day and she came 2nd! She should have come first as she slowed between the white line and the ribbon! It was a matter of milliseconds and by the very fact I am telling you this…you can see this shit clearly matters! I am one of those parents! Which is all rather strange, because anyone who knows me from school (feel free to comment) knows I was the least competitive child. I actually hated competitive people, I thought it was all rather ugly and unnecessary, just like PE! I am the LEAST sportiest person.

However as I have grown up and I am no longer forced to do the bleep test and find 100 ways to forge my mothers signature for a sick note, I strangely now enjoy exercise and even running! If I became famous for running (that will not happen btw) but say if I ended up the next Paula Ratcliffe, my old PE teachers would piss their pants laughing so hard as they would have never seen that coming! Ok, so I am not even that good at running, and I still hate, well I am actually scared of any competitive running, I even avoid all those charity type runs too!

And because of that I really do not want my children to be the unsporty type. I acted all girly about my lack of sporting ability at school and I want the complete reverse for my girls! I want them to try to enjoy a variety of sporting activities and not just the assumed girlie ones like “Netball”. I fecking hated that one, because once someone threw the ball at me, and I caught it all unexpectantly and it ripped of a few off my nails which had taken me an age to grow! Pointless game of catch, right?

So when our Immie got picked to run for the school I was uber proud! And I never let on about my lack of sporting ability, or my dislike of PE! I want her to have the confidence to just try, I don’t even care if she wins, but then when she doesn’t I kinda do! And when she does so well, I am so bloody proud that she isn’t like me!!!

So today, I realised we both hadn’t intended on becoming ‘those parents’ but we try so hard in so many ways to give them all the ‘best’, or our ‘best’ and we want them all to succeed in whatever it is they are good at. We say to the Immie a lot, “We just want you to do your best, Imogens best, no one elses”. I’m not worried about the others as someone else’s full potential is not ours. It’s the same with her school work, we just want the very best! Pushy or not its all with good intentions.

But today is another reminder, that we only want to boost her confidence and not zap it! And we were not alone, as I smiled as I watched my husband give our daughter the pre race pep talk as the other dads were doing the exact same! I now realise that being competitive isn’t all that ugly, it’s what drives us. It’s the reason we are who we are. We become a version of ourselves that is built upon others ideas, sometimes their set backs and others achievements. Getting a degree whilst having a young child inspired a few friends around me that realised if I could do it, so could they! We bought a house young and renovated it because we had some friends who had done the same just before us, and we were inspired! A friend of mine lost weight on weight watchers after having a baby, so I joined and lost weight too! I am a follower! What a sheep!

But I thank you competitiveness, I don’t always dislike you, you can motivate the husband and I and our children too. However, please don’t turn us into monsters in the process! Thank you kindly.

 

HELLO…is it me your looking for?

Dec 20th 2015 (10)

Well actually yes, it is. if your name is EVENINGS! I would like to see mine again sometime really bloody soon! It would just be nice to have all the boring bastard house jobs wrapped up by like 7.30pm and all three children in bed at the same time! Then I would treat myself to some Walking Dead, Scandal and the occasional Teen Mom, well that’s when I can get hold of the remote!

It feels like I haven’t blogged in forever, but this is because there have been things to do right up and till 8.30pm and then my eye balls burn and I’m shattered. But somehow I do manage at least another thirty minutes of I phone time before falling asleep!

When we had just one child, we used to watch so much telly! Now I barely get to see Emmerdale, or even a program which is not paw patrol or has some repetitive catching tune for just thirty minutes. In my twenties, before university and after number one, at the time she would actually sleep and go to bed at 7pm Id probably average three hours of television a night! This sounds like heaven to me right now!

In fact, it would be so lovely if I sent the husband out for three hours with all three children at say 7pm so that I could ensure three hours of uninterrupted TV time. No, “Mummy I’ve hurt my finger”, or “Mummy I can’t sleep”, just the sound of the kettle boiling would be nice…hmmm. What soft place services are open at 7pm, is it totally wrong to take three children out to the pub at 7pm on a school night…could I actually get my husband arrested though?

I know I am being bloody selfish just letting my unmotherly mind wander there in the fields of self-interest and narcissism (posh word alert….might have googled it ; ). I must sound terribly ungrateful at times and I am pretty glad the children cannot read my mind and hear my unspoken words in my head, because aside from the swearing they would feel really unwanted!!!

But most of my days are filled with the rollercoaster highs and lows of parenthood. Like today, it started with the number two coughing so much he was sick on me and in his bed, mostly sour milk…delightful! Then whilst washing the bedding and clearing up the breakfast things I walk past the living room to see number two has pulled down his nappy and has his hands in his shit! He is saying something to me, but couldn’t work out what, he hasn’t learnt the word shit yet! Not sure why as I say it enough! But then later after 35 minutes (I kid you not) of screaming because he got a potato peeler out of the kitchen drawer and I told him to put it back, he cried “Tuddle mummy, tuddle”. So bloody naughty but insanely cute!

Then little Roo number three was having none of this napping business this morning and also did not want to be put down on the floor! So I had to listen to more crying than Id like to in putting the shopping away but when I returned to the room to pick her up, he little cheeks and a huge smile, I don’t really mind that extra “Tuddle”!

My eldest also came out of school in a good mood for once which is nice. Because for an eight year old its like we have hit the teenage years already, I don’t know who I am getting when I pick her up! I now understand why I was called Abbie A and Abbie B as a child! Karma that’s called! I informed the eldest that I had packed her running gear and we would practice her cross-country today instead of our usual swim slot and she didn’t mind at all. I packed up some squash, half time oranges and a small chocolate bar to distract from the fact I was making her run the entire length of my old high school field! She bossed it and I am not sure where she gets her athletic enthusiasm from, certainly not me! I like running now but I had the ability of the overweight kids at school, hence why every cross country or sports day I would be the skinny girl with zero ability competing with them. And yes…they always out ran me!

Number one made me so proud that she can run faster than her mummy and probably her daddy! Sssh don’t tell him I said that.

So despite losing my evenings to these little beauties for now, I know it wont last forever…oh no…wait… it will, because teenagers do not go to bed at 7pm! FML! How much is TOO much, in terms of boarding schools….

 

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