Thursday, 28 July 2011

Call to Arms

Right then. That's it. I'm outta here.

For a week. (My attention span probably isn't sufficient to last for longer.)

While I'm off (burglars: my house is manned by house sitters and a very large, slavering dog. I may have lied about the last bit), I have decided to set you all a little task.

A Call to Arms. (Of the non violent variety. More of the limb variety. Although I don't actually want your limbs. That would be ... odd.)

You are all amazing wonderful MAD people who read my blog. I adore you all. When I was at church the other Sunday, our brand new shiny vicar launched his great plans to double the size of our congregation. By everyone bringing a friend with them, he told us, we'd be twice our size in the space of a single week.

I was impressed. And thought about what he'd said in great depth. "This is PERFECT. Twice the number of readers ... I mean congregation ... in a WEEK."

And so, lovely amazing wonderful mad blog reading people, I set to you my Call to Arms. Go out. Go forth. Multiply. (Literally.) Find your favourite friend. Point them over in my direction ...

... here:

... or the Facebook page, here:

... and to the shiny clicky Googly thingamybob over here ------------------>

... and make them click on it/them/all of them/all of them hysterically on repeat.

And then, lo and behold, I'll return from my preventing my children running amok on the beach/terrorising other holiday makers/sand eating for Britain holiday, and I'll have TWICE my previous number of blog readers.

And then ... um ... STUFF will happen. Like, you know, my cock will get massive. Or it would. If I had a cock. And number of blog readers was in any way linked to its size.

Have a wonderful (blog reader multiplying) kind of week. I'll be the lady in the too small bikini flashing my nipples at the general public whilst her 3 year old yells in her direction "Mummy! That lovely boob thing on your big nipples is TOO SMALL."

Best of British ...

From the mouths of babes ...

Two recent snapshots of the kind of daily abuse I am subjected to from Mr Jamie. The first comes after a session spent tidying his room. When I left home I thought I'd passed the point when people would tell me to go and tidy my room. Thanks to Neil, I need not have worried. I am regularly sent up to tidy my bedroom, and also that of Mr Jamie. (In fairness to Neil, this is exceedingly necessary. I am regularly unable to see my floor due to various detritus strewn across it. If I lived alone I fear they might have to dig me out of my own possessions.) I can occasionally convince Mr Jamie to assist me with this, by emphasising heavily just how angry Daddy will get if his room is not tidy. (Neil may claim I am overexaggerating here. Meh, details, details.)

And so it was that yesterday morning we arrived in Mr Jamie's (now sparkling) bedroom. While I balanced Beth on my hip and got his clothes out of his cupboard, Mr Jamie walked around the floor (which he probably hadn't seen for some weeks) and surveyed his domain.

"Oh yes Mummy. This is very good. I am VERY pleased with you. You have done some very good tidying. Daddy will be pleased, and I am very pleased too. Well done."

Patronising git.

This was closely followed up by last night, when I told him during his bath that I was popping out briefly for dinner with my work colleagues, but that I would be back later on, and that Daddy would be looking after him. While I dried Beth off in the bedroom I could hear the following emitting from the bathroom where Neil and Mr Jamie were deep in conversation.

"Are we going to go to the holiday house soon Daddy?"

"Yes, very soon."

"Oh good. I like the holiday house. Are Mummy and Beth coming this time?"

"I don't know. What do you think?"

"Well, Beth can come, because she is a good girl. But I don't know about Mummy."

"Why's that?"

"Well, she has been a very good Mummy at home, but at work she was very naughty and she hit someone. She said it was an accident and she said sorry, but I don't know if she can come now." (WTF, WTF, WTF? Am an HR Manager, FFS. I spend half my life stopping people hitting other people, not wading in myself. I can assure you that this is absolute nonsense. Your honour.)

"Oh dear. That was a bit silly."

"Yes it was. And do you know what else Daddy?"

"What's that?"

"She's going to go out in a minute and have her dinner. Not in the house. And she's not bringing any back. Mummy's not sharing at ALL."

I bloody well need a holiday.

Tuesday, 26 July 2011

Shit happens ... and mostly to me, so it seems

If this shit didn't happen to me, I'm not absolutely sure I'd believe it. All I can say is: thank god for this blog. At least then I get to transcribe some of it to hurl in front of you and hopefully create vague entertainment. I'm still not entirely sure that makes up for having to live through these debacles (and quite what the law of averages of them all happening to me is remains beyond me), but it is a shred of comfort to cling onto in these times of deep and heady mortification.

It all kicked off last night. I was having sex. With Neil. (I like the fact I've felt the need to clarify that for you there.) I was distracted midway through events by the fact I had both my hands clenched into fists. I wasn't sure whether I was harbouring deep seated anger issues, or whether I was just subconsciously demonstrating my support for the latest 'power salute' group on the block. I decided not to mention any of these thoughts to Neil.

Fast forward to this morning, at work, and I went for a wee. (In the toilet. Not at my desk. Even I have my limits.) All feeling not quite as it should, I decided to do some investigation.

"For FUCK'S sake. It is simply not possible. How much string can one woman's front bottom hold?" Given how paper thin our toilet/office walls are, I need to try to remember to keep some of these thoughts on the more internal side of my monologues.

Yes, lo and behold, there was yet ANOTHER piece of string attempting to emerge from the inner depths of my vagina. This one belonging to the new, improved, lovely period giving coil - it was also spiky. Ouch.

I phoned my GP, saved in my phone contacts as 'Reporter of Mortifying Incidents'. They promised to see me almost immediately, and so it was that at 6pm this evening ...

... I lay flat on my back, legs spread, facing (front-bottoming?) yet another front bottom handler. This time I'd remembered to wee in advance, but realised I'd got slightly too blase about the process when to my horror I caught myself with my arms stretched up behind my head. With my legs akimbo and nothing on from the waist down I fear I may have looked rather terrifyingly 'come and get me' to the poor GP who emerged from around the side of the curtain. I then followed this by chatting in depth about the nature and 'roughness' (or otherwise) of the sex I'd been having which may (or not) have led to the rogue coil action. When I realised this might be a bit too much information, I followed it up with some musings on the size of my husband's cock. As you do.

Once I'd finally, finally shut up (trust me: no one was gladder about this than me), she sent me off on my way for an emergency ultrasound scan and a prescription for the morning after pill. I took it to Tescos, and picked it up along with several packets of condoms. Then I decided this looked a bit odd, so I bought £20 worth of children's clothes to go with it. And then I took it to the till.

And you KNOW who served me.

Mr Poor, Innocent, I'm-Only-16-So-Stop-Scaring-Me Tescos checkout boy. I even tried to avoid his checkout ... but he called me over.

"It's okay, come over here. I'll serve you now."

"Oh, thank you, that's very kind of you, I was just going to go to the self serve ones, but that's great, it's lovely to see you again, not that you would have seen me before. Anyway. I'll just get these, lots of lovely clothes for my children. I have two you see. Children that is, not pregnancy tests. I totally didn't mean to say pregnancy tests. why would I be thinking about pregnancy tests? We were talking about children, weren't we? Children's clothes. And condoms. Like these ones here. Which I'm buying for my children. God. No. I mean friends. My friends. I often buy condoms for my friends. Lots of them. They're gay, you see. The friends. Not the condoms. So they don't have to worry about pregnancy. Not like me. Although I'm not. Pregnant, that is. Obviously not. What with that morning after pill they've just given me. Blimey, I'm like Contraception Central me. Just so you know, I do have reliable methods of contraception. I'm not like some irresponsible teenager who manages on a cycle of pregnancy tests, morning after pills and belated condom usage. Not that you need to know that, of course. You're just scanning my shopping. Is that everything. Lovely. I'll be leaving now. Great to see you again. Byeeee."

What is WRONG with me?

Sunday, 24 July 2011

Best laid plans

You know those Saturday evenings, when you can't wait to sit down in front of the TV with a glass of wine and watch a good film? (Jaws, in my case. Which is absolutely how I like to prepare for my beach holidays.) With the children in bed, a vomiting husband ensconsed in front of his PC (this last bit isn't essential, though it did mean I got unrestricted choice on my TV viewing), and the opening 'naked woman in dramatic shark eating death scene' playing, all was at rest.

Until that unmistakable sound, familiar to all parents in the known universe, came over the baby monitor.


Followed by a torrent of gushing.

For the sake of my more delicate stomached (or lunch eating) readers, I'll skip over the detail of the next half an hour. All you need to know is that, 30 minutes later, having hosed down Mr Jamie, the bedroom, and the surrounding neighbourhood, and having left him with a large plastic box for emergency purposes, I came back up to the bedroom to find this:

I guess it's always good to ensure you've got all bases covered.

PS If you're wondering why Jabba the Hut's there? "He likes eating sick Mummy. And poo. Blaaaaaaaagggh. DisGUSTing."

Saturday, 23 July 2011

Things not to do with your Saturday afternoon

Only a complete and utter moron would think it was a good plan to take her two children bikini shopping with her.

I am that moron.

(Oh, and just so we get it all straight very early on: that's a bikini for me. I'm not putting either my 9 month old or Mr Jamie into one. Not this week.)

With Neil busy vomiting, and me having convinced myself it was somehow necessary for me to buy a bikini to wear (on a beach holiday in Britain, with an arse the size of the Isle of Wight ... my inner powers to reach completely irrational judgements within the blink of an eye concern me greatly), we set off to the bikini shop.

And it all went swimmingly. (See that quite staggeringly brilliant pun I threw at you there? Hush, you with the slow hand clap. After the afternoon I've had that is nothing short of genius.) At least, that's what I'd like to write. However: this is me. And this is what actually happened.

We started off in M&S. Who, like the majority of high street retailers, seem to sell their swimwear solely between the months of January-March, which means by July you're left with a pair of size 22 fuschia pink bottoms and a 'reduced' rail full of size 6 leopard print 'thong style' bikinis. Neither option was particularly appealing.

Optimistically, we went up to the lingerie department. I swear, sometimes it's like I lose control of my mind. Mr Jamie, let loose with 5,000 'big black nipple holders'. The predicatable occurred, and it was a bit like the infamous Father Ted scene, only in reverse. "Jamie. Come here NOW." "In a MINUTE Mummy. I just touching these lovely boob things. Look." With some trepedation, I did, rounding the corner to find him with a particularly gargantuan 'boob thing' making a rather fetching hat. Grabbing him by the elbow, we made a speedy exit.

After several more false starts (seriously - am I that unique in wanting to buy swimwear in July? Apparently so.) we made it to Debenhams, who pissed me off most thoroughly by having their bikini section two full floors and a long lift queue away from the only open dressing rooms. We queued for the best part of ten minutes, during which time Mr Jamie entertained himself by fashioning hats for both himself and Beth out of the bikini tops I'd brought up to try on. 'Normal', my arse.

When we finally made it into the changing room, my highly optimistic plan was to persuade Mr Jamie to sit quietly on the stool in the corner just outside, while Beth sat in her pushchair and I rapidly tried on all 6 options. The reality, of course, couldn't have been further from this. Beth shouted loudly at her own reflection (I do worry about her intellect) and Mr Jamie 'accidentally' wandered off with various "boob things" and "PANTS" attached to parts of his anatomy. This led to me bobbing in and out of the changing room, entirely naked (it's not like you can keep much on when you're trying on bikinis), fraughtly shouting "JAMIE. BRING THE BOOB THINGS BACK HERE NOW" and no doubt terrifying everyone else in a 5 mile vicinity.

Oh, and of course it goes without saying that I didn't buy any of them. In part, this was in due to me forgetting to remind myself not to buy my 'fantasy size'. I'm not sure if anyone else has this problem? I'm alright on the arse front - I know it's the size of a bus, so am well prepared to choose appropriately - but my breasts elude me completely. The size I have in my head that I am is a size that I probably was when I was about sixteen. Needless to say, my 34DDs laugh in the face of the 'fantasy sized' tops I'd brought up with me. (I have taken the 'fantasy size' issue to an even greater level - once, whilst under the influence of drink, I bought about £100 of bras from on online retailer. In said 'fantasy size'. Needless to say, they all had to be returned. Am a class A tit. Forgive the pun.) Consequently, I spent the twenty manic minutes we were in there attempting to squeeze my tits into a bra cup which might just about have reached around my elbow, whilst chasing down Mr Jamie with bras on his head, and doing a strange, convulsion-esque type dance in an attempt to distract Beth and stop her highly audible conversation with her own reflection.

And I did all this WITHOUT THE AID OF GIN.

Am an absolute fucking moron.

Friday, 22 July 2011

Life Plans

"I like your rings Mummy."

"Do you want to try them on?"

"Yes please. What are they?"

"This one is my engagement ring. That's from when Daddy asked me to marry him." (See, you cynics? Contrary to popular belief I didn't actually ensnare him with a big net.) "And this is my marriage ring. That's from when Daddy and I got married." (Wedding ring, idiot. It's not going well when I find myself stooping to Mr Jamie's level.)

"I like your rings Mummy."

"Thank you. Now give them back before you lose them, or eat them, or something. I love you."

"Love you Mummy."

"You are my lovely. Lovely lovelies. Beth is lovely and so are you."

"Have you just got one lovely?"

"No: I've got two. You, and Beth."

"But just one Jim-Jam."

"Yes. Thank goodness. I mean, what a shame."

"And one Beth."

"That's right. Do you think you might have a baby one day?"

30 seconds of hysterical laughter later ... "No Mummy. That's silly."

"No, I mean do you think you might marry someone who has a baby one day? So you can have a baby?"

"Ummmmmm ... okay. If I have to."

"Try to sound less as though I'm selling you into slavery. What would you call your baby."

"Ummmmmm ... Beth!"

"Good. Original. Easy to remember, at least."

"Do I have to get married Mummy?"

"Not quite yet. Let's wait until you hit school at least. Do you know who you're going to marry?"

"No." Looks VERY worried.

"Well that's okay. You don't have to decide right now. It might be someone you haven't even met yet."

"Okay Mummy. I'm going to go to my bed now and go and have a little think about who I'll do the marriage with. Is that okay?"

Love, love, love, love, LOVE him.

Wednesday, 20 July 2011

No pressure

I'm sitting on the sofa writing this with a snoring, poorly baby next to me. Poorly babies encapsulate all the absolute worst bits of parenting for me. Covered in snot? Check. Diva-esque in their demands? Check. Screeching like a banshee? Check. Clinging limpet like round your neck? Check. My particular poorly baby has half a pea stuck to her top lip, which makes her an even less attractive poorly baby than your standard, run of the mill, poorly baby.

It is just as well I adore her.

I have my own suspicions about what may have led to this particular period of illness. And for once, it wasn't Mr Jamie (more on which later).

It's the stress.

Yes, really. I reckon my 9 month old has succumbed to the latest virus on the block as a result of severe work (well nursery) related stress. Why? Well, yesterday, when I picked her up from nursery, I was handed ...

... her school report.

That's right. You did read that correctly. At 9 months old, my baby has been given her first school report.

WTF? I'm sure I was at least - well, at school - before I started getting reports.

Not only that ... she has development targets.

Now I'm a manager. An HR Manager at that. I know a lot about development targets. I spend half my life setting the bloody things, and telling people off who don't take them seriously.

Even I feel setting them for a baby might be a step too far.

So Beth has clearly taken one look at her development targets and worked out she can't cope any longer. Despite all the lovely things they're saying about her (essentially she's an enormous flirt, who smiles at everyone and reveals her tummy to those she particularly favours), if she doesn't work extremely hard at 'learning to stand up without holding on' and 'ensuring she can eat using a spoon' then she is heading rapidly to the Baby Dunce Corner.

I swear, the world has gone mad. And when it's ME saying that ... you know it's bad.

(Ooh, random and unintended piece of poetry for you there. Poet Laureate beckons ...)

While Beth is grappling with targets, Mr Jamie (who now appears to be beyond hope completely: I don't think I've seen any targets for him for years) is grappling - and LOVING - the random whims of his nursery workers. (I have to say I am also very, very entertained by this. Me and 3/4 year olds - we're on a very similar level.) Yesterday, I picked him up early from nursery when I collected Beth, and found him wearing a large white sticker which said 'Norman' on it. Looking around, his classmates were wearing similar with even more random names.

"Oh, don't worry about his sticker. We just decided we'd make up different names for the children today. They love it; they've all started calling each other them. Jamie, what's your name?"

"I'm not Jamie. I'm Normal."


"That's what I said. Normal."

Jamie/Norman, Beth and I got into the car and drove home to a somewhat startled Neil.

"I'm not Jamie Daddy. I'm Normal."



It was with a large amount of relief than I escaped back to the office, before returning home later that night to find Jamie/Norman lying in bed. In his pyjamas. Wearing the Norman sticker.

"Daddy said I couldn't wear it in the bath."

"No. I can understand that. Night night Jamie."



"Normal. That's what I said."

"Night night Jamie."


"Night night Norman."

"Night night Mummy."

There is a reason why 'randomness' is the most utilised word in this blog's tag cloud ...

Monday, 18 July 2011

Cervix: Part Deux

Just another normal day in my life.

Those of you who are more recent blog-readers (I love, love, love you all. Not carnally. Don't panic.) may not be familiar with The Epic Saga of the Coil which plagued my life early this year. Try this, this or this, if you like being put off your dinner.

I had high hopes my days of making a total tit out of myself were over. However. Over the past month, my internal (well, more frequently external, if we're being completely honest with ourselves) has run something like this.

"La la la la la. Lovely coil. Lovely lack of periods. La la la la la.


"Lack of periods.

"Sore breasts.

"Which must mean ...


I met Neil as he arrived home from work, wailing and gnashing my teeth. (That's me doing the wailing and gnashing. Not Neil. Like you needed clarification.)

"Where are you ..."

"OHHHHHH GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOD don't even try and speak to me it is a FUCKING DISASTER my coil is clearly INEPT and I am now pregnant and my life is so totally completely OOOOOOOOVER. GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOHHD." I slammed the door and sped off in hot pursuit of a Tesco pregnancy test. Which I bought along with a loaf of bread. For cover. The innocent 16 year old lad serving me made the mistake of asking me if I was having a nice day.

"Nice? Nice? NICE? How can you possibly think such a thing, have you not seen what I am buying, my life is OOOOOOOOVER. GOOOOOOOOHHD." And I swept off in Lady Macbeth fashion, leaving a completely bewildered Tesco cashier looking somewhat bemused and wondering what the hell loaves of bread had ever done to the maniac he'd just served.

I pissed on a stick. (And also, let's be honest, on most of my right hand.) Proof positive I wasn't pregnant.


You might think at this point I'd calm down.

Think again.

"GOOOOOOOOOHHHHD Neil, it's okay, I'm not pregnant, but what shall I dooooooo, I don't know what to doooooooo, I have no bloody periods, I CAN'T LIVE LIKE THIS."

I think Neil was in absolute agreement with the last bit.

And so, following a fraught telephone conversation with my absolutely lovely and quite fantastically understanding GP surgery, I found myself at my appointment this morning.

Lying flat on my back. Legs spread. Pants off. Some days I wonder why I bother buying myself underwear at all.

Bad, evil, non-period-giving coil out. Good, shiny, happy-period-providing coil in. I cracked bad jokes throughout and concentrated firmly on not weeing on anyone's hands. Which can only be the reason why I ended up getting this accolade from my lovely GP.

"Well, well done you. You've got the happiest, most relaxed cervix I've ever seen."

For the love of god. I am all for praise, but why does it have to be solely directed at my cervix. First plaudits for its 'accessibility' (from the nurse conducting my first ever smear test. Gah, just incorrectly typed that as 'nursery'. Seven kinds of wrong.), and now for its happy and relaxed nature.

It really is no wonder I put out so very easily.

Sunday, 17 July 2011

The Apprentice

So then. Big night tonight. It's the final of BBC 1's The Apprentice. Otherwise known as The Most Jawbreakingly Brilliant TV Concept In The History Of TV, Filled With The Most Annoying/Stupid/Lacking In Any Common Sense Whatsoever (Delete As Applicable) People You Can Every Imagine Meeting. I am so excited I've given up on any attempt at bladder control and simply fitted a comode inside my half of the sofa.*

I realise there are some people who have been living inside a person sized cardboard box for the last 12 ish weeks, and have no idea what the hell I'm on about, nor why they should absolutely be tuning in to BBC 1 at 9pm this evening.

This is for you.

The Apprentice: In Brief

Lord Alan Sugar. Previously known as Sur'Alan which was far catchier. Angry shouty man with lots of money and a grey beard. Hates being surrounded by dimwits. Which is why this is such utter fucking genius.

Nick Hewer. LAS's side kick #1. Notable for facial expressions which make him look like he's constantly chewing on a poo, and for the immortal use of the best line TV will ever produce: "You were all over it like a tramp on chips." I hope one day to marry him. I don't think he knows this.

Karen Brady. LAS's side kick #2. Notable for being a very successful businesswoman and having lovely long swishy hair. The latter does not detract from her ability to carry out the former. I'm sure she's very lovely, but she has been stepping into some very big shoes: those owned by Margaret Mountford. More on which ...

Margaret Mountford. Actually only features in one episode (tonight's) but, along with Nick, is one of the best things ever to come out of BBC 1. She has a piercing look which would shoot you down at ten paces and hair which is absolutely like a cloud.

16 morons candidates.

Aforementioned morons candidates are split into teams and told to name their teams. After about five hours of agonising over which highly cliched six letter word they should use to define their team persona, you realise the kind of individuals we're dealing with here.

Over the next few weeks, said teams are given tasks. These tasks generally require a modicum of common sense. As a result, utter mayhem ensues.

The most rubbish of the morons candidates lose the tasks and are hauled into the board room. At this point LAS shouts at them, or he would, if he could get a word in edgeways. Instead, he shoves in his earplugs and sits back and watches whilst the mother of all playground squabbles kicks off. In each board room squabble, it is compulsory for someone to:

1) Wax lyrical about why they would have been a better team leader.
2) Contort their face into the most extraordinary position imaginable in order to attempt to cast disdain upon their rival. Be caught on camera and be later mocked by Dara O'Briain (host of the subsequent 'You're Fired', and a comedy fucking genius).
3) Explain to LAS that it doesn't matter that they don't know how to calculate a margin, what will really make the difference is their GCSE Woodwork (or equivalent), and that's why he should hire them.
4) Attempt to talk over LAS. Be shot down with a look that could freeze mercury.

Post shouting, LAS fires one moron candidates, by pointing firmly in their direction and barking "You're fired". My HR fretting goes into overdrive at this point. "Where's the PROCEDURES, for GOD'S SAKE?" (This is why I mostly watch T'Apprentice accompanied by wine.)

The two non-fired morons candidates return to the luxury London abode they're staying in and each week attempt to 'surprise' their colleagues. "Who could it be ... who could it be ... my GOD, it's YOU! And YOU! The two people we've been sharing this house with for the last 12 weeks. Who'd have thought it?"

The process is repeated. Ad infinitum. We all watch, point, laugh and mock, and generally enjoy ourselves greatly.

And that brings us to tonight, and our final four candidates. For those of you tuning in for the first time: a brief summary ...

Helen. The really really really really REALLY pretty one. I love her. No idea if she's good at business. Neither do I care. She's so PRETTY, dammit.

Susan. A bit like a Jack Russell on crack. Mad, erratic, and someone who would sell her own grandmother before she let you beat her in the board room. I despise and am awed/terrified by her in equal measure. She is my bet for the win.

Tom. A properly MAD inventor type man bloke thing. Also possibly a little incompetent. He has done some good things, but my mind is coloured by the 'apps' task, when he came up with: "Let's design a traffic light app." "What does it do?" "It's a traffic light." "And?" "I haven't got any further than that at the moment." Neil's tip for the top.

Jim. Aka Derren Brown. He is the most profoundly fascinating influencer of people the world has ever known. I want to say he's crap, but he won't let me. He is a business genius. Let him win, LAS. These are not the droids you're looking for ...

Truly, it is the TV event of the year. Fail to watch at your peril. And in the meantime, I'm off ... to deal with my commode ...

*I may or may not be joking.

Saturday, 16 July 2011

Bumming around

Whilst taking a leisurely shower this morning, I heard the following from the bedroom adjoining the ensuite:

"I'm bumming you, I'm bumming you, bum bum bum bum bum bum bum, I'm BUMMING you."

Followed by a loud cry.

"WHAT?" I shot out of the shower. "Jamie, WHAT are you doing to your sister?"

"I'm bumming her."

"What ... what ... WHAT?"

"Sorry Beth."

"Sorry Beth what?"

"Sorry Beth for bumming you."

"Baaagggggggaaaahhh." Beth, at least, was appeased.

"Not that I want to labour the point, but Jamie, when you say you were bumming her ... can you explain how?" It cost me a lot to say this sentence.

"I was bumming her ... like this. Bum ... bum ... BUM."

"Oh thank god. BUMPING."

Friday, 15 July 2011

Rusty spoons

No, not some perverse sexual position. Although I realise it is me, so you are probably perfectly within your rights to require clarification.

I have been known on an alarmingly regular basis to misquote the infamous (well, clearly not that infamous, given I can't remember it correctly) Alan Rickman line from Robin Hood, Prince of Thieves. (Neil would have an awful lot to say about my choice of film. I'll ask you to keep your thoughts to yourselves.) "I would rather gouge my eyes out with a rusty spoon than do THAT." Finding myself saying it three times before we made it down the stairs this morning I thought it was only right to have a blog post dedicated to rusty spoons.

Here it is.

I would rather gouge my eyes out with a rusty spoon than ...

... watch another episode of Everything's Rosie. Fuck off, CBeebies.

... listen to anyone who isn't me blithering on about their children. Obviously my children are delightful and wonderful and should be discussed at great length. Everyone else's children are dull, irritating and smelly. Everyone else should therefore realise this immediately and keep schtum.

... wax my top lip again. Fucking ow ow ow ow OW. And that was after gin.

... clean up another load of Beth's poo. Although if I'm serious about this then I'll have no choice but to employ rusty spoons immediately. With FOUR nappies already this morning, all I can say is that she clearly takes after her brother ...

... ever, ever, ever attend the Tenth Circle of Hell otherwise known as Soft Play. A disturbing number of my friends-with-children rave about it. I am delighted to say I have never been anywhere near the bloody thing. Large room filled with shouting screaming smelling children which you have to PAY to get into? Bring on those rusty spoons.

... wear flat shoes with skinny jeans. People do not want to see what appears to be Britain's hidden nuclear weapon walking around the streets.

... get asked once more by Mr Jamie "Mummy, would you like to look at my bottom?" before standing naked in front of me, post poo, and pulling apart his butt cheeks. What kind of crazy fetishes does he think I'm into?


Wednesday, 13 July 2011

The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly

Good Parents ensure that their small baby is never ever ever left on the sofa unattended, where they could quite easily roll off and cause untold damage to themselves.

Bad Parents inadvertently leave their small baby on the sofa and endure subsequent rolling chaos as a result of having to dash off to resolve an emergency situation involving the other small child.

Ugly Parents leave their small baby on the sofa without a second thought whilst they swan off into the kitchen to pour themselves gin. Upon hearing the resulting 'thud' from the next room, they do go in to investigate ... but only after quaffing said gin.

Good Parents sit down at the table with their children at every mealtime and enjoy a cultured (home made) meal together, the baby safely strapped into her highchair.

Bad Parents buy an M&S ready meal and let the children entertain themselves.

Ugly Parents grab some cereal from a packet, hurl it onto the floor, and let the children run amok around their feet hoovering it up whilst they catch up on oh so crucial Social Networking.

Good Parents put their small children to sleep, by themselves, in separate rooms, and ensure they are put to bed early and therefore fully rested by the time they wake up the next morning, when they will get up enthusiastically to play Educational Games with them.

Bad Parents keep their children in their bedroom for far too long, and cause them excessive disturbance at night by still insisting on coming up to bed and watching TV.

Ugly Parents encourage their small baby, upon waking, to go and crawl around the bedroom floor, in order for them to be able to sleep a bit longer. Small baby, thus released, is then able to crawl over to their sleeping sibling, whereupon they wake them by repeatedly hitting around the head and laughing like a drain. Ugly Parent, faced with protests from the older sibling, informs them that this is divine providence for all the years they did the same to their parents.

Decide for yourselves which category I fall into ...

Tuesday, 12 July 2011

Soldier soldier

Every day, my children are the first to be dropped off at the nursery door, and the last to be collected. I would feel desperately guilty, if it weren't for the fact that I'm generally too busy running around like a headless chicken. Like this morning, when I discovered that I'd actually given birth to a Labrador, rather than a baby. Beth vocally eschewed her highchair for the floor, where she spread all of her pieces of toast around her, gobbled them up by pressing her face to the ground and suctioning them in, and then traversed the lounge in order to pull herself up on the pouffe (small chair without arms, as opposed to small gay man), reach out for her brother's plate containing his gingerbread man (breakfasts chez me are occasionally somewhat improvisational in their quality), knock it onto the ground in one foul swoop and then employ the same 'suctioning' technique to vigorously inhale it. Mr Jamie was impressively stoic in his response. "Oh my Beth. Oh my. Oh MY." (He gets the 'oh my' bit off one of his nursery workers. I confess to finding it hilarious.) "I won't be eating that now, will I? Never mind."

There was a point somewhere in all of that. Ah yes. The nursery run. Every day, without fail, the three of us stand, with our faces pressed against the glass door, waiting for them to open up. Usually, by the time the doors are opened, a little knot of parents and small children will have arrived and will be crammed into the small porch together. There's the usual 'we have only our small children in common so what the hell are we going to talk about' attempts at polite conversation, before we all drift into a relative silence. Which is always, always, when Mr Jamie chooses to save up his most embarrassing remark of the day for. Without fail.

There are two mothers who drop off at the same time as me at nursery who are, I assume, soldiers. Either that or they have something of a penchant for camo gear. Mr Jamie is duly fascinated, but had thus far remained mute on the subject. Until today. When, in the midst of the pre-nursery-silence, he piped up with the following:

"Look Mummy. That lady a soldier."

"Yes, that's right. Are you going to be a good boy today?"

"Where's her gun Mummy?"

"I don't know. Do you think you might play in the garden?"

"Where IS it Mummy? Where's her gun?"

"She probably doesn't have it with her today." Myself and the mother in question exchanged strained smiles.

"But is she going to do some fighting?"

"Not right now, I don't think." I turned my desperate face towards the glass, hoping for salvation in the form of a nursery worker coming to open up. At last. There they were. Just coming down the corridor ...

"She IS going to do fighting Mummy. She needs her gun."

"Come on then Jamie. Time to go in." Thank the Lord.

And with that, as the lock was turned and the door gradually opened, came the loud, resigned sigh of Mr Jamie."

"Oh dear Mummy. She hasn't got her gun and she's got to do her fighting. She will be all deaded. Oh MY."

Monday, 11 July 2011

Things I have learned ...

... over the course of the past 3 days.

1) Take That concerts are full of MANIACS. And when I'm calling you a maniac, you know it's bad. I sat on the train watching the screaming hysterical women around me, inwardly judging their bad behaviour and feeling delighted I would never descend to such levels. Then I realised I was also a woman, also on the train, and also going to the Take That concert. This messed too much with my head so I decided to stop angrily thinking and played Angry Birds instead.

2) Robbie Williams is simultaneously the most terrifying and entertaining individual I've ever found myself in a room with. (Can I describe Wembley Stadium as a room? I suppose I can, albeit it may be stretching the truth slightly. Just me, Robbie ... and 80,000 other people.)

3) Apparently, if you're a Take That audience member, and due to drunken hysteria you hurl your entire pint of beer over the person in front of you (who happened to be my sister - never was I happier to have picked seat no. 28 as opposed to 27 ...), it's perfectly okay to simply intone "Oh. Oops. That was my drink ..." and watch as they attempt to wring themselves and their belongings dry.

4) If you're attending a Take That concert, and decide you want to sit on your friend's shoulders and hurl your bra around your head, closely followed by a full frontal reveal of your breasts (which was absolutely picked up on the big screens) ... the time you want to pick to do so is, of course, half way through 'Angels', just after, in fact, Robbie Williams has yelled out his request to "THINK OF YOUR DEAD GRANDMAS." Because, out of all the Robbie set list, Angels is so completely the track which most calls for bras and tits. And naked breast waving is absolutely how I like to remember my dead grandma.

5) Mr Jamie is as random as ever. Car; nursery; this morning. "Mummy? We can't take our mouths off, can we? That's a shame."

Sunday, 10 July 2011

Hairy growlers

Fuck me. (As ever: not literally.) I am knackered. What a weekend. In all the best ways. I went to see Take That, and intended today's blog to be a celebration of all things Take Thattish and full justification for why I have been effectively AWOL (again) this weekend.

However. Then this happened.

Remember my pubic topiary torments? (New readers: apologies. This may be a bit much when we're still just getting to know each other. The equivalent of me running into a party of strangers stark bollock naked. But I have been known to do that too, so I'm afraid this is just what I'm like. Feel free to run screaming for the hills. I promise not to chase you.) Well, after much internal agonising, I'd reached a 'happy medium', and gone for what I believe is known in the trade as a 'Brazilian'. (Ouchy.) All was well. My children were entirely not fucked up. And then we all got in the bath together ...

... and my 9 month old daughter, sat between my legs, launched herselves, with nails which were well overdue for a cutting, at what she clearly believed to be the newest, most entertaining bath toy of the lot.

"Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaiiiieeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee. BETH. NO. STOP that NOW. Neeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeil. Take her away. She's on a one baby mission to wax me. Fucking ow ow ow ow OW."

Neil looked at me benignly as he rescued a delighted Beth from my grasp.

"What did you expect? She thinks it's some new exciting furry animal to play with."

This is what happens when I try not to fuck my children up ...

Oh, and on a totally non-hairy-growler-related-note ... Jaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaams. For the first time in EIGHT MONTHS. We sobbed, shrieked and threw ourselves at each other whilst the terrified punters at the Baker Street bar we descended upon looked on in terror. As did my sister. I have missed him more than gin, pink wine and yaks all put together.*

*Again, for my poor confused new readers - Jaaaaaams is my best friend in the entire world ever ever ever with the notable exception of Neil. He's been busy being almost famous in London Town and I've been busy getting my pubes ripped out by my small daughter. And yet still we find the parallels ...

And now you'll have to excuse me. I'm off to hunt down the wax ...

Friday, 8 July 2011

Suits you, Mr Jamie

First off today, I am in paroxysms (isn't that a lovely word) of delight that, following on from my sweeping statement at the start of the year that I would be losing 'shit loads of weight' (a technical term for about 2 stone), I have now lost ...

... precisely half of that. In six months. Which would probably make me the slowest loser of weight of all time, if it wasn't for the fact that thanks to the lovely Jillian and her 30 Day Shred I have also lost around 2 dress sizes and a good 5 or 6 inches from around my waist. I can get back into my size 12 jeans without looking like I'm smuggling marshmallows around my waist, and my breasts are no longer a danger to shipping.

I am a leaping, joyous, still-fatter-than-I'd-like-to-be-but-at-least-it's-a-stone-less-fat leapy thing. Don't worry, I'm curbing the desire to walk down the street naked. That comes when I lose the second stone.

And on an entirely unrelated note, but because I sometimes worry that you think I make some of the randomness that happens to me up ... today I have some photo evidence of the latest mad stint of Mad Mr Jamie. This happened this morning as I was getting out of the shower. He'd been mysteriously quiet for the past five minutes - always a concern - and then suddenly appeared in the doorway of the ensuite. Looking like this:

No, I don't know why Blogger has randomly rotated it. Maybe it's for the best. As you can see, he's styled himself there ... using a pair of my tights as a sarong. A sarong which is really, really not doing its job, judging by the large, porn-star-esque star I've had to add to preserve his modesty. Oh, and he asked for this photo to be taken. "Look at me Mummy, look at me, look at me. Hahahahahahahahahaha. Look what I did. Take a photo so I can see and laugh at it. Haaaaaaaaaaaaaaahahhahahahahaha. I am so funny Mummy."

See? This is ACTUALLY my life.

Have awesome weekends. I'm off to throw my pants at Take That. I hope they're insured ... (That's the band. Not my pants. Never a good joke if you have to explain it ...)

Thursday, 7 July 2011

Good things come to those who wear pants a size too small

Good things indeed. Bloody hell. Yesterday was MENTAL. Even in the context of the madness of my so called life, it still achieved 'mental' status. Well done yesterday. You go with your mental ways.

The hub of the madness centered around the fact that the utterly DIVINE Netmums (who says my affections can't be bought? My first born child is in the post. He may arrive a bit squashed) picked this little spot of rambling inanity to be their Blog of the Day on Facebook. I responded in a suitably understated way, ran around screaming a lot and weed on my own foot. (The latter was unintentional.) Neil was forced to spend the evening intoning "LA LA LA" loudly on repeat as I shrieked at him and told him he was now living with a Class A celebrity (I always get my celebrities and my drugs confused) and that he should make the most of still being able to touch my naked flesh without security guards pouncing on his head and imprisoning him for crimes against Class As (of the celebrity type).

We both went to bed with a bit of a headache.

So HELLO, lovely new blog reading people who have happened upon me through the magic of Netmums. It's awesome to have you here. Please say hello in the commenty bit below, that's if I haven't scared you off already. There was a brief moment yesterday when with all these new readers I felt slightly pressurised to be a bit more sensible and stop running around like a maniac and shrieking profanities and weeing on my own foot.

Rest assured. It hasn't lasted.

Netmums hysteria aside, the other great moment of wonderfulness yesterday was getting an email to tell me I had won a very exciting competition (the online competition obsession continues unabated) and was going to be going with three friends to have a Gentleman's Afternoon Tea at a very swanky London hotel.

At which moment a little thought occurred to me.

I am not a gentleman.


But it's okay. Panic over, because thanks to my dad and his propensity for genius ... I will now be going to my Gentleman's Afternoon Tea ... wearing a false beard.


Lest you think any of this has caused me to get above my status ... well, Mr Jamie saw to it last night that there was no chance of that.

(If you're eating, you may want to look away now. Or find a convenient receptacle to vomit into.)

You know those moments when, after a long, over exciting day, you decide to sink into a nice hot bath and relax?

You know those moments when your two children decide to get in with you, and you realise it's a bath which no longer really deserves the title of 'relaxing'?

You know that moment, when, as your three year old steps over the side of the bath, raises one leg, and turns his bottom towards you ...

... you realise you should have really, really concentrated his focus more towards the 'bottom wiping' element of going to the toilet ...

... you realise what your bath is about to turn into ...

... and you realise speeds you didn't ever imagine possible, managing, through pertinent use of the 'Fosbury flop', to exit the bath a mere 0.7 seconds after his arse hits the lovely warm bath water, and your relax is very much no more?

Good things really do come to those who wear pants a size too small. And so does poo.

Wednesday, 6 July 2011

A letter to my daughter

Dear Beth,

You are lovely. You are a mad, inanely grinning, little round ball of fat with eyes. (That last bit comes courtesy of your father. Rest assured I think you look nothing like a ball of fat with eyes. You've quite clearly got a nose, a mouth, two ears and a bit of fluffy hair on the top as well.) You live, quite content, in your own little mad world. A bit like me really. Occasionally our two mad worlds collide, and then we grin inanely at each other with slack open jaws until one of us gets bored and goes off to eat some fluff or drink some wine. I'm hoping you fall more into the former category.

However, despite your loveliness, you're 9 months old now and we need to start setting some ground rules. First off, what in the world is with this 'getting up for the day at 5am' malarky? You do know we're related, yes? 5am is in no way an appropriate time to be opening your eyes and starting to leap around. 5am means we still have a good 1 hour and 20 minutes of sleeping time left, even on a work day. Also, if you really must wake up at 5am, know that you have two choices. One is to approach your father. He's the slightly hairier one on the left who will greet you with a benign pat on the head and, if you're lucky, a few choice words about how beautiful you are. (I'll ask him not to mention balls of fat.) Alternatively, you approach your mother. Slightly less hairy and infinitely more grumpy. When the reaction is a screech of anguish followed by a moan of resentment and a thoroughly turned back - well, you only have yourself to blame. I'm just saying. Oh, and the 'grabbing of my nose with your really sharp nails accompanied by your shrieks of delight'? 100% unacceptable.

Then we have the eating side of things. It's great to see you enjoying your food, but I just want to clarify one thing: there's only one orifice which actually works when it comes to the process of getting eating materials into your tummy. (Clue: it's not your ear.) Similarly, bottles can be drunk out of from one end only. Yes, you're right, it is very frustrating when you're trying to suck up a piece of clear plastic whilst simultaneously dripping milk all over your groin. You try clearing it up ...

And while we're on the subject, WTF is with all the pooing? You're like a pooing machine. Can you not start saving things up a bit more? Good things come to those who wait, and all that. A little bit of sphincter control has never hurt anyone. Oh, and if you are going to persist with the 'six poos a day' methodology? Could you possibly start shouting "Daaaaaaaaaaaaad" when you're in need of a clean nappy? It's very gratifying that your first word is 'Mum', but it would be even more delightful if you could occasionally orate it at a time when you need me for a reason not solely associated with cleaning up poo. Your dad, on the other hand? He LOVES poo. Try him.

Other than that, I think you're fulfilling your baby responsibilities remarkably well. You've come top of the class when it comes to milk drinking/cross-room crawling/fluff eating/poo smearing/carnage creating, so well done you. And you're very lucky to have a big brother who adores you. Even if he does occasionally demonstrate it in a rather too physical manner. Yes, I know, it was a bit of a surprise. No, I don't think he meant to. Yes, I will get him to wear pants next time around ... Look on the bright side. You already have a catalogue of traumas for your memoirs.

Love you little girl. Now take your hand out of my bra, let go of my nipple, and stop dribbling down my neck. Because you know I'll be doing the same to you when I hit my dotage. Revenge will be sweet. Oh yes ...

Mum (don't even think about adding an 'my' to the end of that. My scant control on my sanity simply won't cope ...) xxx

Tuesday, 5 July 2011

The Many Disbeliefs of Mr Jamie

Mr Jamie appears to have reached the 'cynical' stage of his development. Recent facts that he is absolutely refusing to believe ...

Tummy buttons are where you were once attached to your mummy. He looks at me like I've lost the plot completely. "No Mummy. We didn't come out of your tummy. We came out of your front bottom." I've attempted to remind him of what happened when Beth was born. "Do you remember, she had that bit of cord still attached to her tummy?" He looked at me sternly. "Yes, and she didn't like that AT ALL. You were very bad to make her cry Mummy. She doesn't want to be attached to you." Point made.

That cars will kill you if you jump in front of them. Well. He kind of does believe this, but it's all tied up with his version of death. You know, where you don't get to watch any CBeebies any more. And where being 'all dead' is on a par with being a superhero. "Jamie, what will happen if you don't look for cars when you cross the road?" "They crash into my head, and then I get all DEAD. Yeeeeeeeeeeeaaaahhh." This is absolutely terrifying, on just about every level.

Bedtime actually means bedtime. Last night I'd put him to bed, as normal, at about 7pm. About an hour and a half later the sounds of 'fighting men' on the baby monitor went quiet and before long there was a small naked figure standing in front of Neil and I. "Mummy. Daddy. I have come to tell you ... that I don't think I WANT to go to bed. So I think I'm going to stay up instead and have a little play." You can guess how the rest of that conversation went.

That it is actually possible to have nipples and boobs. I blame myself for this, having started down a route that no one of sane mind would ever have commenced upon. Given the amount of time I seem to spend in public with Mr Jamie having conversations about my 'nipples', I thought adding some anatomical accuracy to discussions might make it slightly less mortifying. "No, Jamie, they're not actually all nipples. The bits in the middle are nipples. And the rest of them are more boobs." "That's right Mummy. Look at your nipples being on your boobs. They're not boobs, are they. Silly boobs. They're NIPPLES." All, naturally, pronounced in his 'Brian Blessed voice', in the middle of a crowded supermarket. I have only myself to blame.

That Beth is still completely incoherent. In Mr Jamie's mind, she's performing complicated monologues all the time, albeit through the medium of only "ooooh", "gaaaaaaah" and "muuuuuuuuuuum" sounds. (Yes, her first word is 'Mum'. How utterly gratifying. And annoying, when your husband translates this as you being therefore the sole parent who can respond to her dirty nappied needs ...) Beth will come out with the following: "Oooooooohhhhh. Aaaaaaaaaaaaaahhh. Ba ba ba ba ba ba ba ba BA BA MUUUUUUUUUUM." Mr Jamie will turn to her, a contemplative look on her face. "Yes, that's right Beth, you did drink that water. And you would like some more now. No, Mummy's not giving it to you. MUMMY. Beth is telling you. She needs to have that water, and then she would like to have a little sleep. But first of all, she wants to poo in her nappy, and she wants to EAT IT. BAAAAAAAAHAHAHAHAHAHA." Ahhh. There speaks the mind of a three year old boy.

I am expecting grey pubes to arrive any day now.

Monday, 4 July 2011

St Germain

I'm baaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaack.

I'm not actually shouting at you there. My left arm, post Shred, got resolutely stuck on the 'a' key and it was taking far too much effort to lift it up. Eventually mind over matter (finger) triumphed, which is just as well, as otherwise this really would be the most incoherent blog post ever. Having said that, reading back the above, I think it's already a strong contender.

I am sooooooooo tired. (Those were actually intentional os. I always have a little panic when I type that. 'os' just looks silly. But 'o's' is so absolutely wrong. Oh god, enough of the vowel obsessing.) So very, very tired. Here are some things I have been doing:

First off is the sheer amount of alcohol I consumed this weekend. It was WONDERFUL. For those of you who are spared from knowing me in real life, and therefore haven't already been bored silly by me on Facebook, go NOW to your nearest Waitrose store and purchase St Germain. No, not a random place in France. It is, in fact ... ALCOHOLIC ELDERFLOWER CORDIAL. I nearly fell off my chair for delight when David Pot introduced it to me. (In fact, I actually did fall off my chair, but this had absolutely nothing to do with delight and far more to do with what happens when you drink the best part of a 20% proof bottle of St Germain.) Particularly fine with Bombay Sapphire and tonic. Have I plugged it enough yet? St Germain St Germain St Germain. And yes, Waitrose/St Germain makers, if you would like me to write "I heart St Germain" at the top of each blog post in return for unlimited supplies of said St Germain, I am more than happy to oblige. Hell, I'll throw in my first born child as well ... although I suspect you'd send him back.

Said first born child is currently being startlingly well behaved. Which probably means another 'fat bottom' moment is just around the corner.

When I wasn't drinking (and talking about) St Germain, I was busy suffering from its after effects. First hangover since 2009. It was well worth the wait. I can only assume it was the St Germain still lurking around my head which convinced me it would be a good idea to suggest to David (btw, David's real name is actually Alice. But don't let that worry you) that we do a workout together. Whilst hungover. I swear: sometimes it's like I don't even know myself. St Germain doesn't smell quite so nice when it's leaking out through your pores ...

And finally, it is probably down to the St Germain again that I found myself in tears of laughter on Saturday night. I don't think this will translate very well to a blog post, or, in fact, to anyone outside of my own mad head. But I will try. We were playing the game Balderdash. If you haven't played it: go and do it. It's brilliant. (Balderdash makers, you can thank me later. Along with the St Germain manufacturers ...) Essentially, you have to make up lies. As you can imagine, I am something of an expert. I'd already come up with what I'd believed to be a moment of utter brilliance, when in response to the requirement to provide a synopsis for the film 'Night of a Thousand Cats' I'd replied: "It's night. There are a thousand cats. They do stuff." (Well I thought it was funny. The reality, in fact, turns out to be even better ...)

For another similar round we had to provide a convincing synopsis for the (real) film title: The People Next Door. Which is when Harry, my 16 year old step son, came up with this moment of utter, utter genius:

"The people steal a dog from their next door neighbour. It turns out to be a cat."

Crying. Crying, crying, crying with laughter. Is that not the funniest thing you have EVER heard?


And with that, I'm off to go and absolutely NOT drink any more St Germain.

Saturday, 2 July 2011

The truth hurts

Have briefly interrupted my own blogging hiatus, because moments like this, quite frankly, deserve to be shared with the world.

We were leaving (yet another) supermarket yesterday. Beth and Mr Jamie were both ensconsed in the trolley. We came out of the lift and into the car park. We walked towards a slightly rotund lady. And, with what he can only have imagined was pefect timing, Mr Jamie boomed the following, with projection that Brian Blessed himself would have been proud of:

"Mummy! Look at her FAT BOTTOM."

At which point, I'm not ashamed to say that I gathered all my strength, grabbed my gin filled trolley, and fairly ran towards the car, pursued, no doubt, by a very angry, very fat bottomed lady.

And then I laughed for about three hours straight. Which of course is absolutely the way to show Mr Jamie that what he did was completely wrong and inappropriate.

It is moments like this which make the endless grind of the parenting gig entirely worthwhile.


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