Saturday, September 25, 2010

Holy crap

Fuck me. I have to show you this. This is, no shit, my son on his new bike today, going around the local BMX track 20 minutes after we took the stabilisers off.

Sadly all we had was an old phone with rubbish resolution but I had to post this up in the general spirit of being gobsmackingly proud of him. And yes, he is wearing a helmet. And knee pads. And that's the Frog paddling helplessly behind him.

Anyway, that's me regurgitating all over your screen. Over and out!

Friday, September 24, 2010


I'm finding this whole Motherly love thing absolutely shameful. The whole thing is a living cliche - how much a mother loves their child; I mean, who wants to hear about that? If you're a parent, you already know, if you want to be a parent, you can guess, if you don't, you don't care.

I spend a lot of my time telling my son off for various things... sometimes I stand back and listen to myself, it's disgusting. 'Don't do that; you're making me cross; you're making me sad; take that off, put that on, do this, stop, say please, say thank you, put it down, what are you DOING???'

I pretty much spend the rest of my time beating myself up about it. A friend of ours has been berated by his brother for the amount of times he tells his daughter off; the brother feels that no-one has the right to tell a child what to do. I can't actually remember the outcome of the conversation, either the brother has no children or his kids are a nightmare; either way we all laughed heartily at the story... but secretly I bet we all doubted ourselves.

Mums confess things to each other. How we shout at our children, how we sneak up on them at night and cuddle them when they can't squirm, how we secretly like it when they fall over and need comforting; how we lose our cool, how frustrated we get. How guilty we feel all the time; about loving them too much, neglecting them, spoiling them, feeding them crap, forcing them to eat things they hate; guilty about secretly loving them clambering into our bed after a bad dream, about how sometimes every word they say is like a knife in an exhausted brain.

It's good, the confession, it shows us we are all the same, that maybe we have nothing to feel guilty about. But it's hard, really, to admit the truth: we are mothers; we did it to ourselves. Mostly.

Anyway, so nobody needs to hear about it, which is why I'm not telling you about our day today; except that it was lovely. At the end, I got told how much my son loves me. There were a lot of 'really's in the sentence. It ended in 'a lot'.

That's what's become of me. Who would have guessed?

Friday, September 17, 2010

Fizzing over.

One of the odd things that have happened to me as a result of writing this blog is that companies offer me things. Things to write about. Occasionally, if I think they are good things, I will write about them. I know this is less interesting then, for instance, hearing about me being pulled naked from the sea; but frankly, that's something I'm rather hoping won't happen to me again; ahem.

Click here for a sponsored review of the new Sodastream

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Toys R... er... everywhere...

This is sort of sponsored by Toys are Us, who keep sending us boxes of toys to test.

A review of the Jolly Octopus game - all the charm of a classic and regularly played with - click here for more

Monday, September 13, 2010

Postman Patsy

Charlie has decided he is a postman. This is not, unbelievably, because he's just been given a book about a postman called Charlie (which arrived in the post today from my Uncle Peter) but because... well because for the past 2 weeks he's been obsessed by the post.

What this means practically is that on getting home in the evening he picks up whatever flyers he finds in the hall; says 'I'm just going to be the postman, OK?', then high-tails it heart-stoppingly back outside and shuts the front door behind him.

If one opens the door to chase him, one is met by a small screeching demon brandishing flyers (and we're not even at the Edinburgh Festival) and demanding one goes the hell back inside.

I'm reduced now to peering out the front window and cracking open the front door when he's out of sight so I can peer down the street like some mad stalker. I did grit my teeth one evening and count to 20 before opening the door; when I peered through he was standing right outside talking to two concerned-looking ladies .

"Are you lost?" asked one while the other patted his back reassuringly.

"This is my Daddy's car. He isn't home yet!" he said, randomly

"You poor thing" the other was starting to say (I think) as I burst through the front door with the largest fake smile pasted onto my face that you have ever seen. "Oh, he's just playing postman" I shouted, much too loudly. "I was watching THE WHOLE TIME through the window" I babbled as they backed away slowly in opposite directions...

Ah yes... two random women connected in a moment of mutual humanity over a lost child in the street... how bloody wonderful...

Hasn't stopped him playing though.

Wednesday, September 01, 2010

Spuddy 4th Birthday

It is nigh upon midnight on my son's 4th birthday and I am propping my eyes open with matchsticks I'm so tired.

It's been an enormous day - in the end there were 21 children here, although not all at once and some of them were younger siblings... but still. 21 children. Twenty one. Children.

We also hosted an all-day play-date for 4 of them as part of our 'nursery is closed, let's all look after each other's kids' rota. Luckily one of the Dad's was over offering support or I would have been under the table by noon.

The mistake, I think, was getting the kids doing party decorations at 10am; by the time 11am rolled around all they wanted to do was eat cake and have a party; making them wait until 3:30 when everyone else got here was perhaps a leetle draconian. Still, it was a day.

It's beyond cliche, any mention of how much a parent loves their child and so just assume I've laid down all the cliches for you here, just sicked them up and rolled them out to pulsate pinkly in the light of the laptop screen... Yes, it is true, I love my son... and today he really shone.

He was, in the main, generous with his time and his toys (to the point where many of them are broken or thrown to the wild winds... we will never have a party in the house again), he cleaned up, he helped out, he led games and was among a small coterie of the best behaved children. He didn't push or throw, tease or bully, he didn't snatch or hog; he was a total gent and I'm a whole other hill of cliches proud.

4 is quite grown up, it turns out. Not as grown up as it seems when one is 3, ie, he has discovered to his chagrin that he cannot drive the car or go to the park by himself or ride his new bike without stabilisers or... there was something else he wanted to do today that I told him he couldn't do until he was a grown up. 'So, when I'm 5?' he asked, hopefully.

Still, in the last year he has grown tall enough to reach the taps in the kitchen, the doorbell outside and a whole host of things I sort of reckoned we had another year or two before he could do. He can take things out of the fridge and pour them into cups without spilling, dress himself, wash himself, get in and out of the bath just by stepping over the edge...

Anyway, all to say that he's remarkably grown up, an illusion that is swiftly shattered when one sees him next to any child over the age of 8 and suddenly he looks so tiny and vulnerable that I feel the need to swoop over him and carry him home; something about which he would in general be quite happy about; chances of a carry when one is nearly three foot six and weighs in at 43 pounds are pretty slim on the ground.

So, that's that. He's 4. Happy Birthday, baby bear.