Woman seeks cave

Earlier my Mum and I took my daughter and son shopping. I don’t know why my daughter behaved like a foul ungrateful teenager but the experience was hideous. Nothing was good enough. When she finally found some trainers she liked they weren’t in her size and no she didn’t want to wait for them to be ordered online. When we decided to leave her to browse down one aisle so we could keep baby boy entertained in another then went back to check on her she spat out her contempt that we were ‘checking on her’ and could we please ‘go away’ (although not sure if she said please). She moaned the entire time we looked at clothes for me,( back to work clothes ) and then moaned that she wanted to go home after my Mum had bought her dinner.

My Mum and I realise that we should have just given it up as a bad idea and left with nothing, giving daughter an important lesson in how not to behave. But we didn’t want to ruin her day, or ours for that matter.

Baby boy presented his own issues but only insofar as picking up random objects and putting them in the trolley – but that was his version of little boy entertainment in a supermarket so he did well. 

When my husband ‘had words’ with her later she said she was tired and that was why she was grumpy. Part of me accepts that but part of me doesn’t. It’s just those damned thing called hormones turning my daughter from Famous Five’s Anne to Roald Dahl’s Veruca Salt overnight.

My Mum then said on the way back that I had to make sure baby boy didn’t copy his sister when she was being rude. I replied by saying that parenting at times is too hard a job and that actually I would like to crawl into a cave.

But, in the absence of a cave nearby, I just settled with putting them both to bed, drinking tea and writing this blog post.  

This blog is for UNICEF, thanks for reading. 

Yes to lost minutes

Saying ‘yes’ is catching up with me. Sometimes, if you write something down in a list it helps you to see that actually there isn’t that much to sort out, so here goes…

– do parish council minutes, email all partners re web links, start post box listing application, start handover document, do tweet schedule before leave, supervise daughter’s first tutor session, get children used to childminder through booking in time with her, get the working party for playground off the ground (Scuse the pun), go to first meet with new team, do medical questionnaire, get road closure for school fair booked, contact parish council re: using green for said fair, find out how much was raised through textile recycling at school, get November dinner and dance bash booked, set-up childcare voucher scheme, put for sale signs in husbands truck (to sell-off as no longer needs it and we need more cash), get Sailing sessions booked in over Easter, sort out childminders sessions walking the dogs……I’m sure there was something else…oh yes, train for the swimathon.

Everyone has lists like these as long as their arms(s) so no wonder we are all running around like headless chickens with our heads either stuck in a computer or behind a steering wheel. While saying yes has opened up so many experiences and opportunities, there are times when just the experience of taking stock will suffice.

My baby boy said to me earlier, “Mummy why don’t you stand still”. I am always saying to him “just a minute” when those minutes are all I, and anyone else for that matter, has got..

This blog is for UNICEF.

Thanks for reading.

Plane mad for a lunchbag

I have just spent 30 minutes (or it seemed like that anyway) deliberating over which ‘Disney Planes’ lunch bag to get my son on Amazon. You would think it wouldn’t take more than 5 minutes….why do you need to read umpteen reviews on a bag’s ability to store a child’s lunch?- but you can’t help but get drawn in. Then there is the design, colours, size, capacity, durability (sad isn’t it). Then when you finally go for it and select the seller who is offering free postage, you find at checkout it adds another £3 for packing. By which point you have given up the will to live and press ‘complete order’ anyway.

The saga didn’t start on the Internet. No, this quest for the lunchbox began earlier today when I specifically drove to a supermarket because I had seen another branch selling them only to be told in this particular branch “they won’t be in stock til after Easter”. So I drive back through our local town and try no less than three shops, all of which don’t sell insulated lunch bags, let alone Planes ones. Then that was it, I was on a mission. I had said to baby boy he could have a Planes lunchbag, so he was going to get one……

I think I need to start work (or maybe it’s the guilt of starting full-time work that is making me become insanely focused on anything concerning the children) – yes I think that’s it.

This blog is for UNICEF.

Thanks for reading. 

Uncharted waters…

Our boat is now on the water, in arguably one of the most beautiful spots on the South Coast. Compared to others moored nearby, it looks like a wind-up toy but we are boating on a budget so anything that float goes in our book. 

But it’s my daughter that already has ‘the bug’. Having helped us sometimes willingly and sometimes unwillingly on our boat, she is keen to get at the helm of a dinghy and has been studying the RYA handbook for children on sailing. So we decided we best get our money out and pay for a course. As it happens, the place we are now moored has its own sailing club. When I downloaded the membership form I noticed there had to be a ‘proposer’ and a ‘seconder’ which had to be people already in ‘the club’. This gave me the impression it was some old men’s club where you sit in Big chairs, drink brandy and smoke cigars. So, when we went down to the boat today, I noticed the clubhouse was open so decided to see how archaic it really is. I went up to the place that seemed to be most receptive to guests (where they were serving tea and cake) and as I started to explain my intentions a smiley lady putting milk in her tea, who had clearly just come off the water, remarked that her ears had been flapping when I came in and that she would be happy to talk to me as she is the memberships secretary.

She then proceeded to spend the next 40 minutes giving myself and my daughter a tour of the clubs facilities, the boats she could sail and details of all the events they have coming up. She couldn’t have been more welcoming and helpful and said not to worry about the proposer and seconder ‘it’s all old hat anyway’….phew! 

As she talked about the different boats and what my daughter could start doing on the water, my daughter’s eyes grew larger and larger. She desperately wants to start. Being a club I will have to pull my weight too to help her, so I am going to embark on a steep learning curve. I know how to tack up a horse, but rigging a dinghy? Cluelessmum.com

This blog is for UNICEF.

Thanks for reading.

Life skills in theatre…well the worlds a stage

I had the pleasure of watching my daughter enjoy every single minute of her performance at her Theatre School. She was fab and not only that, every child shone and clearly enjoyed working as a team together on stage.

It is not just performing skills that my daughter is taking part in, but the feeling of camaraderie with her contemporaries and older children. The girl that won the talent contest got a big pat on the back from friends on stage as she finished her performance and every parent was clapping and whooping with gusto regardless of whether their child was in that particular performance or not.

It dawned on me that we all have the ability to share in one another’s achievements and those of our children and take pleasure in witnessing young people do things very, very well.

This blog is for UNICEF.

Thanks for reading. 

The eclipse – how to improvise this phenomenon by a 9 year old

Ok yesterday’s post was heavy, but I am pleased to report that I have told my hubby that I applied to be a social worker and he didn’t baulk at the idea (especially when I told him the childcare costs would at least be covered….and maybe some groceries). My mother in law on the other hand didn’t seem to restrain her feelings. When I told her over the phone, there was a pause then she commented that she had always thought my sister in law would have made a good social worker (and she didn’t add the word ‘too’ afterwards). I consoled myself by realising that my mother in law doesn’t really know me, she only knows that I am able to love her son (although she confesses if he had been first born she wouldn’t have had any more children) and that I am able to have babies quite quickly ( not the conception part, rather rubbish at that, but the labour part – my daughter was four hours and my son was two – he came out so quick his eyes were bloodshot). 

Anyway, It’s the eclipse tomorrow and everyone is getting geared up at school for a glimpse in the playground. My daughter was asked to make a viewer from a cereal box (we don’t have cereal so I actually went out and bought cereal for this very purpose). After extracting the weetabixes, she set to work. Lots of cutting and tape ripping ensued before I went in to check how she was doing and found her ‘testing’ the viewer by standing on a stool holding a tennis ball up to the ceiling light…’it works’ she said. I just hope the clouds clear for tomorrow.

She then did a demonstration of the process of the eclipse for me and baby boy. She used a large round cushion to represent the sun and chose a tennis ball for the earth, much to the amusement of my Jack Russell, who kept chasing the ‘Earth’ while it was in orbit of the cushion. I was laughing and so was baby boy as my daughter got very cross with the JR as she tried to extract ‘Earth’ from the dog’s mouth. So she gave up the idea and used us instead. I was the sun, baby boy was the moon and she was earth, except the moon was rather too close to the sun and after a while got bored of going round and round. 

This blog is for UNICEF.

Thanks for reading.

Thank you, no thank you

In many ways Mother’s Day was typical, a nice lunch, a walk, sightings of daffodils and lambs, a bit of indulgence.

We managed to hit two birds with one stone with my hubby cooking both myself and my Mum a roast dinner. It was scrummy and we asked if he could do it more often, he said he would definitely do it again at Christmas and the following Mother’s Day! We played a game of articulate, which was interesting – playing with OAPs and children is challenging.

We then exchanged presents and my daughter had given me lots of presents and lots of cards and was very particular about the order in which I opened them. I actually found it overwhelming and in many ways it was hard for me to accept all this attention. The reason being is that it is great being a Mum, even when you feel like screaming and it feels wrong to be thanked because it is like being thanked for indulging in an expensive lifestyle change that, for the most part, will give you eternal pleasure and amazing memories for years to come.

Mums and Dads who know their children enrich their lives, dont need thanking.

We are the lucky ones.

My Mum once said to me that Mother’s Day was more important than birthdays. I disagree.

But it is nice to cherish those moment when they present you with daffodils wrapped in foil, a handmade card, a painting – a moment in time when they stopped to think about Mum.

Read about the fascinating political, religious and cultural history of Mother’s Day on Wikipedia.

This blog is for Unicef.

Thanks for reading.