Monday 24 January 2011

The Meanest Mum?

So The Tweenager, who loves school, said this morning that he didn't feel well and could he please stay at home. He said this whilst tucking into his second pain-au-chocolat which he wanted to wash down with lemonade. I must say, I am not very sympathetic when it comes to my children being ill - unless I see actual physical evidence like streams of snot, sick, blood or broken bones.
"What's the matter, darling?" I said (annoyed).
"I feel very sick" he moaned.
"Well," I replied, "You seem to be tucking into your breakfast okay so I say until we see vomit there is school."
It's nearly half two and the school haven't called yet so I'm pretty certain he's fine. Sometimes my parental judgement is so spot on, especially when I've got a day planned drinking coffee with my mates.

Wednesday 19 January 2011

Hair - Not The Musical

There are different opinions in this house when it comes to the subject of hair.

I cannot, will not, leave the house without my hair straightened. If this means ignoring the children killing each other and burning The Toddler with my GHDs while he clings to me, then so be it. I once didn't do it because I was going straight from the school run to walk the dog in the rain and it's not an understatement to say that I frightened a number of small children.

Me without the wonder of GHDs

Hair has become an issue recently. Firstly, I got The Toddler's hair cut because it's his christening next week. Nobody has RSVP'd to the invites I only remembered to give out yesterday, so it's not gonna be that much of a special occasion. But his hair was getting a bit too much HughGrant-like so I got it lobbed off. He has gone from floppy blonde cutie to bad boy with rubbish hair overnight. He has had a short back & sides and looks like he has been sheep sheared. I was thinking of getting the barber to do 666 in tramlines on his head but didn't suppose that would go down too well with the Rector.

The Tomboy is obsessed with getting her lovely long locks cut into a skinhead. At every opportunity she will tuck her hair into a hat. She says "Because I've got long hair, people think I am a girl". I say "But you are a girl, you don't have a willy". She says "I am growing one so I need my hair cut". Mmmmm not sure how to parent this one.

The Tweenager wants to grow his hair long. His mop is currently at that in-betweeny length so it looks like Lego hair. I have bought some pinky coloured hair bands and left them in his room but that hasn't deterred him. I tried telling him that I don't like boys with long hair and he replied "Well then that means you don't like Jesus." Last night he ate his dinner as if it was The Last Supper. He told his siblings "This is the very final time you will ever see me with hair this long" to which there was a minute's silence, before I reached for the hair clippers.

You can see why this mum is starting to suffer from grey hair, can't you.

Tuesday 11 January 2011

Change Or Strange?

So I actually should be concentrating on getting The Toddler to sleep through and sorting out the kids' table manners but instead I am fannying around looking at houses and thinking of changes that can be made like moving schools. It's out with the old and in with the new. Maybe. In a brave attempt to combat my Lazyitus syndrome, I am trying to put wheels in motion by making changes and getting out of the rut. I have been isolating - which basically means hibernating - I have not really seen anyone except my core friends and The Dog, oh yeah and my family.
You all know about The Toddler's sleeping habits by now, but I haven't mentioned much about the children's table manners. Comments such as "Get your food off your head" and "Peas do not belong in ears" are quite common at family meal time. The Toddler will only eat if he is scooting around on his little bike. The Tomboy likes to take her time which actually means likes to piss about for at least an hour. The Tweenager isn't too bad but will say he is full after six spoonfuls then ten minutes later say he is starving and please can he have a big pudding.
So yes, I should be working on this. But I am not. With the New Year, I am trying to shake things up. I believe that moving house and fucking around with the kids schools will make my life not so boring. My philosophy being There Is GAIN To Be Made From CHANGE (as long as it's in the right direction).
It's all very strange. I can't explain because I don't understand what I am doing. I'm not particularly bored of my daily routine but in an attempt to be a bit different (and maybe keep my coolness), I'm meddling with the dullness.
By turning forty last year, I've realised that if anything is going to change around here then I have to make some waves. It's taken me eighteen months to actually get off my backside and start moving. But make no mistake, this motion does not involve hoovering or ironing. Although saying that, I did a bit of housey stuff today by taking pictures off the walls and putting them on other walls. The feng shui of the house is better and already I feel like I've done something proactive.
So yes, there are going to be some changes around here. Even if my strange behaviour is going to end up being explained by the fact that it's me, aged 41, going through "The Change".

Thursday 6 January 2011

Third Child Syndrome

I have three children.
It's quite shocking every time I say or write that because I don't feel old enough, nor do they feel like they belong to me.
I've done this mother thing for nearly eight years now and I've started to notice how I have changed. It really doesn't help that I am much older with The Toddler and, as The Husband dryly remarked, am suffering from "Lazy-itus" (yeah thanks for that). The term Third Child Syndrome doesn't necessarily relate to what The Toddler is going through. It's more a definition of my mothering state. Basically, I can't be arsed anymore.
With The Tweenager, I was on top form. I never forgot a nappy or a meal time. We have plenty of photos and even a completed baby book. The Tomboy arrived and I was still doing pretty good, although with an element of stress. Baby book half filled and usually a functional changing bag. I have barely acknowledged The Toddler's existence within our family. He has three photos, all taken before he was 18 months. The older two's collection is growing with school pics, but The Toddler still has three. And no baby book.
I suck, big time.
Luckily, my third child seems to have low standards. Because that's only what is offered to him. I often change a pooey nappy with one wipe because that's all I have left. He has three outfits which are probably aged 6-9months. His buggy is caked in crusty remnants of Ye Snacks Of Old. As revolting as that may sound, the odd slimy fruit flake comes in handy when I have forgotten to pack any munchies. And his needs being at the bottom of my organisational ladder, this happens quite often.
Don't even mention the highchair. The Husband practically gagged recently when he tried to give it a clean.
It's all so unfair.
Luckily The Toddler doesn't seem to mind. To go with the crusty hand-me-downs, he sleeps in our bed most nights, has biscuits for breakfast, makes up his own rules and gets away with murder.
Seems like fair trade to me.

Tuesday 4 January 2011

Happy New Year?

So at the start of 2011, I have realised that The Husband and I mainly disagree on the following subjects:
1) The Toddler's sleeping habits
2) Crazy Play
3) Sweets
4) Taking the kids out in the freezing cold
5) Homework
Parenting is a tricky subject. And even trickier when there are two people involved. As much as you might be on the same page with the same philosophies, there are always going to be certain areas where you disagree. Usually, the advice is to keep your mouth shut and talk about it later when the children are not around. But this is really hard, especially when you've got a mouth as big as mine.
The New Year has brought with it The Husband's new regime for getting The Toddler to bed. He has decided, on the eve of the older two going back to school, that it's time to sleep train The Toddler. Even though I know this has to be done, I don't think it's big or clever to start on the night before school, especially as The Toddler shares a room with The Tweenager.
Okay, so I have made the BIG MISTAKE of putting The Toddler to sleep in our bed. I know this is a big NO NO but hey, it's not like this is going to happen when he is eighteen (mmmm or is it?). My philosophy is that he will grow out of it and what's the big deal because at least it means everyone gets to bed on time.
The Husband is sick of this. I think he has realised that having The Toddler in our bed means no special love the minute the kids are asleep. Of course he's right but I am loving the fact that I can come downstairs and have my one ciggie of the day and, more importantly, watch The Real Housewives of New York.
Knowing The Toddler, and even knowing his capacity for screaming for his mama, I agreed to put The Toddler to bed in his cot. This is the conversation:
The Husband: "He is going in his cot."
Me: "It's a bad idea, I am over-ruling you."
The Husband: "Put him in his cot."
Me (in a voice just loud enough so he doesn't hear): "Tosser."
I explain to The Toddler that once he finishes his milk he can have a cuddle then he is going into his cot. "Okay" he says, not understanding a word that I have said.
I distract him by talking, but there is only so much I can say about his new red bike and his Bob The Builder nappy pants before he realises what is going on. "NO NO NO Mummy's bed!!!!" he screams. I switch to phase two, talking about helicopters and rockets. I distract him enough to slip him into his bed and I wait. The Toddler miraculously seems to be settling at which point I am really bored so I sneak off into my bedroom. For about thirty seconds before the crying starts. I then spend the good part of twenty minutes stroking his head while simultaneously reaching over his cot which is not easy when you've got love handles made of Christmas pudding and two weeks worth of G&Ts.
You will not believe it but The Toddler falls sleep.
I come downstairs where The Husband has a Marlboro Light waiting for me.
"See?" he says, smugly "Happy New Year."