This is hearsay…so I can’t tell you if it’s actually true…but according to The Husband (who’s birthday it is today – happy Birthday hubby! – which also managed to coincide with the final break down of the boiler. Should I be worried?) Charlie had a rather enlightening conversation with him at the weekend whilst watching Bella ice skate. Apparently he’s desperate for some younger siblings and thinks two more would be ideal. Sadly (wrong word, but he’s got a lot to learn…A lot.) there’s not a snowballs chance in hell of his wishes ever coming true: The wish for younger brother’s and sisters is rather like counting to infinity – it can never be satisfied as someone (In this case, Charlie) always has to be the youngest. But more importantly, that was ten years of my life I gave up and I have no wish to return to. Except Charlie thinks he has a cunning plan which he’s prepared to put into action…according to him, if he pushes my boobies (his words, not mine) five times, it makes a baby!…he knows this is true because he saw it on television! (also worrying. On a different level..) I asked The Husband whether he put him straight and grasped with two hands the perfect opportunity for a manly bird et bees conversation….he said he’s been far too amused watching me run away every time Charlie comes close…
Laters, Kate x
This is what I normally do on a Thursday..an engrossing, soul-enhancing, spirit-lifting art class in the sanctuary of a wooden hut on the green, leafy, quiet Common..
Today, this is my reality…it’s half term…so I’m at home..with the kids..and we’re working (??)(*&^%^%$£@!..hindering??) on a Top Secret project..which always seems like such a good idea in the abstract…
A happy worker!
I’ve now learnt that black gloss, children and white, blind dogs really don’t mix…pray for me..and my floors..and possibly my sanity..
Laters, Kate x
This is the result of a short trouser mistake I made by booking a hair cut for myself during half term – I did realise my error, but because our internet and mobile connection was so bad where we were staying, I had no chance to re-arrange it..so I had no choice but to bite the bullet and take Bella and Charlie with me. To my credit, before we left home I asked both of them – Do you both have your tablets to play on? Yes, they assured me. Except, when we got to the hairdressers…
‘Right – you both sit there and play on your tablets… be good, I won’t be long’…
‘But mummy, you never said to actually bring them with us’…
So there was nothing for it but to hand over my phone…
The moral of this story is never, ever, mix hair cuts with young children..always pay the cancellation fee…
Laters, Kate x
Oh The Joys of the Summer Hols… x
- You’re watching a film, OK it’s Disney..but actually you’re involved in the story (sad but true)..at the crucial scene (long-lost Anastasia being re-introduced to her frail Grandmother..a real tear jerker. Promise)…there’s always a ‘Mum, mum, I need to tell you something RIGHT NOW.’ Without fail. Truth be told, happens in all programmes..sport – just as they come to the finishing line, the news..the weather! They announce the weather you’ve waited 30 minutes to hear so you can plan the next day – picnic? no picnic?….’Mum, MUM!…’
- This also relates to map-reading or any activity that requires your immediate attention…..major road junction and need to hear the sat nav? or need to talk to husband because not trusting the stat nav?… ‘Mum, MUM, MUUUUM!’…
- The phone..Mum talking on phone means I must talk to her extra loudly SO SHE CAN HEAR ME.
- ‘Please guys I need 30 minutes undisturbed’ equals at least six interruptions. Because each one was only a small one…because they didn’t want to interrupt you…
- The call of ‘Mum, MUM!’ from another floor followed by silence…that chick-like cry translates to ‘Drop-everything-you’re-doing-even-if-it’s-saving-the-world-because-I-need-you-to-do-something-really-insignificant-because-if-it-was-important-I- would-actually-bother-to-come-and-find-you’.
- The other much heard cry: ‘Mum-MUM-I-need-a-wee NOW!’…guaranteed on a motorway but the worst time so far…Eight hours into a drive on Greek roads at 37 degrees of heat, crawling along on single track, snaking, moutainous road with a stream of lorries which we’d slowly and painfully over-taken without being killed. We pulled over and had to watch as each and everyone passed us again..I cried. And Charlie was given an empty bottle for the rest of the journey..
- The ground-hog-day morning call of ‘Please can everyone have their shoes on and teeth brushed and everything ready so we can go as soon as I’ve finished this’. You finish tidying the house, sorting the washing, putting the washing machine on, cleaning the fridge (delete/add as appropriate)..and nothing’s happened. And now you’ll be late…
- You’re always late.
- The ground-hog-moment of reminding them to say please and thank you on loop throughout the day. Like hitting you’re head against a permanent wall. You can remember the date of your birthdays but this is too hard?? It’s the mum equivalent of chinese water torture. Results in No.15.
- I say ‘Please can you turn your ipod down’ and I get ‘Well that’s it..I’m just going to throw it in the bin and then you’ll be sorry’. Like doh? Results in no.15.
- The more bored they get, the less I want to do with them, the less they are capable of doing except whining at me for being bored…and then I spout all the cliches: ‘In my day…’
- Then you book them on a camp or tennis club..and it’s ‘We don’t want to go because we want to stay with you..’ Why???
- The longer you take to cook their breakfast/lunch/supper the less it will be appreciated. And cooking three meals a day stinks. Results in no.15…for me..
- So you have a picnic and where ever you are, whatever you’re doing, you’ll be handed all the rubbish as if you’re one giant dustbin. Even if you’re driving. Or getting ready to pilot a rocket to the moon..silently, the used lolly wrapper/empty drink carton, sandwich foil are passed over to you… Do I have ‘I am really a bin’ written in permanent ink on my forehead? Results in no.15..
- I tell them a certain behaviour will result in a consequence. They never believe I’ll carry it through. But I do every time..and they’re still shocked. Like??
- Because of no.15 the consequence usually means we don’t do something nice that gets us out of the house….which means no.11 kicks in…and I’m bored too.
- Asking something to be done requires the order in triplicate. And then no.15 kicks in, followed by no.16. And then no.18
- The longer the school holidays last, the more I find my brain shrinks (see no.1)
- And then they’ll disappear and play beautifully together..
- Except the more fun they have…. the greater the mess…
- Till it reaches a tipping point of hysterical proportions and you say ‘This will all end in tears’. And it does…
5 weeks down, three more to go….
Laters, Kate x
Early Summer Flowers x
One of the hardest things I’ve found as a parent is the relentlessness of it – it’s 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. With young children even on a ‘holiday’, unless you have the luxury of child care, there’s no time off – the scenery may change but the demands don’t..in fact they’re exacerbated if you’re by water and they can’t swim..or applying sun tan lotion to a moving target..or cursing the lack of toys as the rain comes down..or wondering where the nearest pharmacy/doctor is..or suffering a hangover with a child bouncing on your head at five in the morning..no matter how beautiful the place there’s still meals to sort, cleaning to do, shoes to find..teeth to brush.
But now that Charlie is five, we seem to be turning that parenting-at-the-rock-face corner. And this holiday sort of proved it.
We wanted to know if we could find a back to basics, out on your bikes type of nostalgic freedom where we could let the kids roam free without a care in the world.
We based ourselves in a little holiday park where cars were banned, where there was an indoor swimming pool (although they still had to be accompanied to swim) a tennis court and a small playground and told them they could come and go as they wanted, even (this was the big one) out of sight…they wandered, made friends, played football, played tennis….and we sat outside in peace and quiet and read!! Unheard of…I finished a whole book!
The truth is modern day parenting has made the world smaller, more tense, less happy till it’s almost no better than pretending to sleep. Really..we don’t need the blister. Which doesn’t mean it’s easy to let go – we’ve all read or seen the horror stories. I just believe we need to do it and we need to do it more – freedom, boredom, security, love and benign neglect is a potent combination.
Which didn’t mean we didn’t do things as a family….we did. We just weren’t permanently chained together….there was room to breathe.
It helped that it was such a comely spot. I’ve rarely seen so many abundant, rampant wild flowers..
With lots to see and do.
A true holiday for ALL the family….We’ll be going back for more of the same.
Laters, Kate x