As my friends were comparing diaries earlier, 10 children were running amok around us. At one point my friend looked up from her week to page view and took in the chaos around her, ‘there is way too much going on’. That wasn’t an overstatement. The final ‘event’ that had made enough noise to drown out the many other noise effects of child’s play, was my daughter’s eight year old friend galloping past on her noble steed ‘licky’, while my daughter cheered on half hanging astride off the side of the fence.
Picture this one event happening simultaneously with a baby girl crying, a toddler pulling at my friend’s leg while she consults the diary, one boy pedalling past on a tractor while the other sits on the trailer, one child chasing another up and down the ramp of a horse trailer and two other children making one hell of a racket and mess in the hay barn. That’s just the children. Also add to the mix one Shetland pony, one extra large cob one medium sized cob and did I mention ‘licky’? Plus 2 Jack Russells and one Cocker Spaniel.
You may be forgiven for thinking we spent the day at a gypsy camp, but no it was just me and my nanny friends trying to have picnic, while satisfy requests for pony rides, Easter egg hunts and lots of picnic food. We also try and squeeze in a few cups of tea and ensure the toddlers are reminded about the potty despite the many distractions. For my baby boy my reminders were not frequent enough, as my daughter’s friend hollers…’ He has done a poo in his pants’…’ where?’i ask…..’ in the drivers seat of your car’. We were surrounded by poo – horse poo, dog poo, nappies and potties.
As I was leading a child on a Shetland pony who was trying to nip me as I led him along while simultaneously balancing baby boy on my opposite hip, I thought about the mantra ‘never work with animals and children’.
I also had a whole new appreciation for what life was like before contraception.
But it was strangely therapeutic sitting amongst the chaos, rather like being at the eye of a storm.
I am blogging every day for UNICEF. If you can help please check out the campaign here.
Thanks for reading.