Saturday, 27 November 2010

I am now akin to She-ra, with the powers of grey skull. Fantastic. Super handy!

This week, late Friday night, when the rain was still raining, it was dark, the chooks had been fed and bedded, the cats mewing for their turn to be fed, the dog trying to catch his tail proving his party trick was worth dinner, the kids still in the needing their 10th last wees/kisses/cuddles/drinks/feet tucked in etc etc, my husband, Alex returned home after having delivered 2.5 tonnes of publicity (yes I am still going on about it). I now, quite literally have the incredible hulk for a husband; the green will grow on me I’m sure, but the anger…man he needs to get that in check. … It has been a tough week, both mentally and physically. I am a bit of a weed, and have not a very good tolerance of pain, and even though I have given birth to 4 kids, one of them with no pain relief at all (and the others gas and air, which was just fun really, few hallucinations, bit sick, but generally really fun), I really am a whoos. So helping Alex load the car/unstuck it was quite a feat for me, and I now feel as though I have toughened up, I am now akin to She-ra, with the powers of grey skull. Fantastic. Super handy!

Scrunchy scrunchy, goes the noise…..I wasn’t worried, funny noises are a given in this house, it is Alex wandering around, he has been wearing plastic bags on his feet due to the torrential rain that began weeks and weeks and weeks ago, and has clung on wholeheartedly to the skies ever since. He got in 3 hours ago, but his coat and plastic bags are still firmly holding place around the house, I reckon he thinks in his head that there are minutes till the rain pours in through the roof, hence the protection….With the kids at home, raining (as mentioned), hide and seek is on the cards, so I send the kids off to hide and start to count at the same time I put the oven on to heat up to cook the bread we have just made into the most unlikely bread shapes ever (these will be interesting, these creations), the oven warm enough for the bread, I wonder why it has been so quiet for a while, but think nothing of it (fool) I should have thought something of it as I got on with other things, because minutes later (although it had been a good 10 minutes in reality) 4 sad little dejected faces, come in, a few crying….why had I forgotten them? They asked through sobs….omg I actually forgot about the game of hide and seek, how cruel did I feel?! And how will I ever live this on down?? For a full 10 minutes I genuinely forgot about my own kids who were waiting so patiently for me to finish counting and to come out and find them…………dreadful moment, truly heartbreaking! It has put me on a guilt trip ever since, and I have been overcompensating in motherly cooings and ‘of course you can my gorgeous little angel’ with rubs on the head, ever since! Although I know I am going to have to watch it and get tough, as when Monty Buster turned round to me earlier on and replied to my question ‘when mummy tells you to do something, what do you do?’ (Expecting to hear the response he should do it on the 1st time of my asking, I am nearly stupefied to hear his) ‘Well it means I have to do it on the third time of asking’ Oh, really???? Rubbish mum. I think I should book myself in for some parent classes…….! I did correct him, but he probably only listens on the 3rd time too of my saying something….!

I imagine this nicey, nicey behaviour won’t last long though, as today I went down to the depot to pick up the next round of shop publicity to collate………..cover your ears ….they covered? (SCREEEEEEAAAAAAAAMMMMMMM)…………..!

Friday, 26 November 2010

I have been caught out, I turn slowly round, bright red, and wind down the window looking pretty sheepish…

I fly round like a blue ars*d fly, trying to get everything done and still collating to boot. I hear myself I do a lot, I hear my own voice a great deal....... “Lick the yoghurt up Oliver, come on you silly animal, lick the yoghurt up….omg, it’s there, no not there, there, you are supposed to have a keen sense of smell dog….” And it went on, sometimes I hear myself speaking and think, if some one actually overheard me saying that……! I was caught out once though. The kids were going berserk in the car, so I pulled over in the car park to let rip at them. This I do extremely infrequently,  as generally the kids are very good kids, but today they had really gone and pushed a woman who was no longer capable of being pushed. I am sounding off at them with many ‘if you kids had any idea…….how dare you scream like that in the car when I am driving, don’t you know how dangerous” and all the other bog standard universal telling off phrases,…..there is a tap at the car window, I cannot even believe it, it takes me a while to register as it seems so ludicrous. I have been caught out, I turn slowly round, bright red, and wind down the window looking pretty sheepish…..there is lady wanting change for a trolley. Unbelievable, the one time I let rip in that magnitude and somebody is there listening……! I can usually say what I like, we can say what we like I should say. Many a time I have a huge smile on my face whilst telling the kids that if they do not get right back over here this minute, I am going to deprive them of chocolate till they are old enough to leave home and buy it for themselves, gaily saying it in that singsongy voice to trick the French shoppers into thinking otherwise! Although we have also been caught out on the presumption that no-one understands. Monty- 4 at the time- was asking me why a particular lady’s bottom was as big as all that, how could you even get a bum that size? He wanted to know, and yes, you guessed it, the one time someone English just so happens to be doing their shopping. I learned the lady was English after she was unable to communicate with the till girl, and I had to step in. Nice one Mont. No doubt I shall be shown up in many ways again tomorrow, as long as Mitzi Joy does not actually accidentally pull my trousers down in front of the school with many, many onlookers, yep, true story. To this day I am still fully aware that there are no secrets here, in a children’s school, I have shown everyone, quite literally, my arse…….! I was an outcast for ages …. Where there are children, tread very carefully, is my pearl of wisdom. 

Well I had best get back to scrubbing sessions, I have managed to get indelible ink all over the cream sofa throw, well to be fair I wasn’t the one practicing my letters, ‘twas lil Mitzi (4) my most adventurous and keen artiste…….when ALEX, and yes I am shouting his name, decided leaving out the black marker would be a good idea round kids……..never, ever, even for a split second leave anything out around the kids….they’ll have it……..

Thursday, 25 November 2010

Bedlam strikes…..!

It is promote Christmas week here in France. Which means for us, collating all the shops’ publicity is a MAMOUTH task, millions of the things (2.5 tonnes weight in paper we have collated and shifted this week, fact.)…..will it ever stop? (I sob) but at least it buys us our ticket to rights and such like in France…..always a positive, right (?!). In fact last night Alex and I found ourselves having an in depth conversation comparing the best techniques in swift hand movements and arm nimbility for collating in the fastest time. An actual conversation about the best collating techniques….what’s that all about? We are still young, and yet we converse on these topics……..time to change our life!

Oh my word, what a day!….. My so called friend, the one who left me her overexcited dog to look after for a week, ‘Driver’ he was called, came round today. I had just finished collating the leaflets we distribute and put together every week at 4.30pm and had promised the kids to do something ‘fun.’ We were coated up and shoed up and on our way OUT, finally……She has brought me round a few puzzles, she informs me, she strolls in with her son, muddy boots, and chucks the puzzles on the table with a ‘there’s a few pieces missing, but I thought they’d do anyway.’ Hmmm, thanks. She then sits down and says she fancies a coffee……off I trot. Bedlam strikes… start with, Esmie falls down the stairs as I am not paying them much attention as I have coffee to prepare for the bringing round of useless gifts lady sat at my table with muddy boots on. The cat has diarrhea in the corner of the kitchen. The kids are charging round, sensing mummy is on the brink, so taking full advantage. I down the coffee, clearing up the diarrhea and seeing to hurt and crying toddler, kids screaming and apparently throwing around everything that is not nailed to the floor or too heavy, although I am sure they gave it a go, whilst listening to her preempting every sentence with, ‘well, I don’t want to tell you what to do, but…..’ then a stream of pearls of wisdom pour from her lips, and I want to curl up in a corner and weep…….!. In all this Esmie is going through a ‘lets constantly take out clothes off and be naked in the freezing cold even seconds after mummy has just redressed me for the 8th time in 8 minutes’ phase. Obviously the chickens are feeling left out and they hop up at the kitchen window, they do this at dusk when they want to go to bed, it would be sweet if it wasn’t so irritating….! They peck away at the window as I try again to get the guest, her son and my 4 out the door again. Still raining, grey etc. we do it, we go out for some fresh air, at my insistence, despite the rain…..and then we get home. The chickens have somehow found their way in and the cat is chasing them (fair enough, she obviously smells food). I do manage to get them in their house, carrying 2 at a time, get me!

I have also burned everything today, I made the kids their porridge, burnt it, was in the process of trying to get them to eat it anyway, I’d leave the burnt bit in the pan, they are in tears as it still smells rank, so I say fine I’ll try it, which I do, whereupon I get it, and I bork so hard I regurgitate the burnt porridge right there and then in the middle of it all……classy. And guilty…!!! That is the last time I try and make them eat something regardless…the truth is, they DO know! I then burned the replacement breakfast, toast. Scrapey, scrapey and good as new, we chow down. I later left the oven to warm up waiting to put more bread in to cook, forgot about the soup I had made earlier, covered with a plastic plate to cool. Soup now full of blue melted plastic, a melted, plastic ladle and now inedible, I reach for it and grab it with my bear hand, clever, and am now a victim of 3rd degree burns on the left palm of my hand. I should have given up, but determinedly I get on with the day, pulling at Esmie’s poppers to get her top off, I yank and pling buttons everywhere, yep buttons do not do the same thing as poppers do when pulled under great vigour…….that was my day, can’t wait to get up tomorrow………..!!!

Wednesday, 24 November 2010

Once you have had kids…..NOTHING is sacred anymore.....

I flick out the crumbs (many kids awake in night = much munchies consumed for midnight energy), the cornflakes and a few pens/tissues/a piece of puzzle, the spider runs out on his own accord, he must have forewarned the daddy longlegs too, as he takes flight, 6 long skinny legs pedaling desperately to takeoff, all from under my sheets……this is my usual ‘flick covers back and SWEEEEEEP’ routine which I have had to adopt every night before climbing into bed ever since having kids. As, once you have had kids…..NOTHING is sacred anymore, not your best clothes, they get puked on and end up as rags, best shoes, they get used as dressing up ‘princess’ shoes (yep they were that posh…..!). Your body tries to recreate the world map with stretch marks……it becomes a training ground for seeing how far it can stretch itself, without going pop! But without ever going back again either…………your walls become canvases, waiting for child graffiti practice sessions, your head becomes filled with little voices (no, not the ones you respond to…….well, maybe some of them are actually!), and your voice becomes mute. There are many, many changes, which no one prepares you for, and then it’s far, far too late………..! But you know what? I would not change one single element, well, the voices in my head get a little much sometimes, especially when they start singing Kylie Minogue……But they (kids) honestly are the most fun, amazing little beings that we have the privilege of calling our own. I am lucky in that mine are still in that ‘we love you sooooooo much mummy’ stage! They are too young to know any better at the mo, but I have no doubt they shall learn! When Monty learned the other day that one day he would move out, find a girl, settle down etc etc, his lil eyes filled up with tears, his bottom lip trembling, he can hardly speak when he says;  ‘but I want to stay here, with you mum, forever’ ahhhhhhhhhh bless him! If only that were to be true forever too!

I have been extremely lucky to have been able to be a ‘stay at home’ mum for 7 years now (‘my god!’ Alex exclaims in the background, lazy cow!) But now that Esmie is 2 -and god they can eat- Monty’s words the other day exemplify this fact: ‘I am soooooo hungry mum, I could eat a rhinoceros….” This was after they had just finished a chicken stew I had done them with croutons, fresh bread I had just baked, a natural yoghurt with raisins and shared a pineapple between them. My point being is that I now need to find a way of bringing in some pennies too!! So as from next year, with my French C.V done, I am job hunting (if the chickens let me out the gate…….).

That was the last time I shall cook my kids chicken. Although Alex and I are veggie, for me, and I hasten to add that this is the way I have chosen to do it, as every one has their own opinions/own realities, I felt meat and especially fish were vey important for a child’s development, so they eat meat and fish. I also decided that not wanting to force something on them, be it only vegetarianism, I realise there’s probably worse things! If/when they make a decision one day to not continue eating meat, then so be it. I believe it is for them decide, not for me to force the decision on them…….lecture over! Anyway, my point was that that was the last time I cooked them chicken because now that we have chickens, Monty and Lola have told me they cannot bear to eat chicken anymore, they have made the connection between that which is on their plate, and that which is pecking around, boccing, and being sung about in Gnarles Barkley songs, outside…!!! So, chicken is off the menu in our house! I am still waiting for eggs…….so the chickens may not survive yet if they carry on withholding their eggs…..maybe they are on some kind of protest? I shall never know, as they can’t speak. And I shall just have to keep on waiting, and trying to converse with them in ‘boc’ language to encourage them to do what they are supposed to be doing….LAYING BLOODY EGGS…………

Tuesday, 23 November 2010

Great, when even your 7-year-old son finds you minging without a bit of bronzer and a touch of mascara, what hope have you got?

I am just about to set foot out the door for the first day in November when it has not rained. I turn to Monty Buster and quickly ask him: “hey Monty, look at mummy a minute, now, can I get away with not wearing any makeup today?” his reply; “errrr, no.” Great, when even your 7-year-old son finds you minging without a bit of bronzer and a touch of mascara, what hope have you got? Not wanting to scare people in the local supermarket, I get my spatula out………

On the way out, I am afraid, very afraid. The driveway fills me with terror as I back out, I am bombarded with various animals trotting across my path, chickens (who are actually soooo stupid that they do not move, yesterday I looked out of the wing mirror and saw an orange mass on the floor, thinking I’d actually done it, I had squished a chook, I rush out to see it is in fact a pile of leaves…..), the dog, some cats, it is a mine field and I dread it on every outing. I back out inches at a time, sometimes with my eyes shut as I cannot face it, it is an involuntary reaction I guess, although not that helpful!

New shoes are in order for Lola today, as she conveniently snapped the buckle on hers after seeing her younger sister Mitzi get a new pair……. Still, off we trot. In France they have just put out Christmas things, they tend to do it far later here than England, which I really like, it means that the commercialism side of things is a little more respectful of the actual events, and thus I have less of an issue with the huge organisations seeking to benefit from us lowly beings who have  kids with eyes and mouths like giant dumplings, demanding everything they can see with menaces. So nice work la France! I digress, as the Christmas things are out, I find I have replacement children, stand-ins. Their whole beings have been taken over by mental children, as if on too much fizzy pop and sweets filled with e numbers….. I no longer recognise them, understand them, or connect with them on any helpful ‘mummy has said something, lets do as we’re told shall we?’ level either. It's one gigantic free for all, and I feel utterly helpless and completely out of control. Walking round the shop with the 4 of them it is like herding wildebeest with a spoon. I stand in a trance for a minute watching them flying round going “ooooh mummy, can I have that? Can I have this? Ooo and that ooo and look mum look at this” times this by 4 and that’s a whole load of little voices demanding things of little me……I wish I was on horseback in cowboy costume and a huge great lasso thing to control them….but I, alas, am not, so to plan B: “Tell you what kids, if you all come now, you can have all of it for Christmas!” Of course banking on the fact they’d forget as soon as we leave the shop………..fool.

I refuse point blank to get Monty any more starwars lego. The last couple of days have seen a mild improvement, but up until then, since his birthday on the 7th November, due to uncontrollable excitement, he has been pottering around in his den till 9pm (he thinks we can’t hear him) and up at 6am, straight under his den again to play with his lego. He cannot help himself. And what between that and the reparation of various ships reducing grown men nearly to tears -Alex having mild panic attacks every time something is broken and daddy has to fix it according to the original, thrown away instructions- (yes, thanks to me tidying!)… as, as they say; ‘a mad ‘ouse’……!

Monday, 22 November 2010

lift the Giant flaps, double fun……

Today I have spent the most part unhooking myself from doors. My mother in law has knitted me a sweater, it is fab and I love it, except maybe the tassel and the reindeers…..that was a joke, she knits beautifully…the only catch (pardon the pun) is that every time I have walked through a doorway today, I have been flung violently back in the opposite direction. Most frustrating. It is the arms that keep getting hooked on the door handles. Earlier I had a cup of tea in my hands, you can imagine the catastrophe that ensued, and the wailing and cursing that came from my lips. Very ladylike……..

This evening I sat down to read the most inappropriately titled books for kids ever, the ‘Rainbow show’s’ equivalent in books I guess. Anyone who owns a child, will also own one of these books of that, I am sure…… 'Lift the flaps’, or in our case tonight, lift the Giant flaps, double fun……..I have tried often not to giggle, but immaturely I find the word ‘flaps’ pretty hilarious…….everyone has  a funny word I guess, and mine is ‘flaps.’ Oh, and ‘badger’ although I really can’t explain that one…..! Every time I write the word I can’t help smiling! How immature, but how very funny, for me! Very inappropriate for the youth I feel too, although I obviously do not sit them down and actually explain why it tickles mummy…… 

We had to have ‘The’ talk the other day, after I was asked the old nutshell, ‘mummy where do babies come from?’ but to be honest at their age I think they are thankfully still too young, so I thought I had got away with it with a ‘well they grow in mummies’ tummies.’ 'And then they come out through your belly button?' Lola (5) asks, 'errr, not exactly, they come out of front bottoms….’ I cringe waiting for the response….Monty (7) 'Oh good, I’m alright then, coz I’ve got a willy and not a front bottom!' Great, only 7 and he is already a typical man, leaving all the hard work to us gals and quite happy about it too……To be honest I don’t know how the real live birds and bees talk will go, I am hoping I will be able to put it off for as long as possible (till they’ve left home!). Mine, when I was little, was in a word, terrifying, it put me off making babies for life (I kept on finding mine underneath cabbages, damned vegetable patch!). My mum gave me an illustrated book with 2 robots, one of which had a giant spring for a willy, the other well, a metal box….!!!!! And it had a little illustration of how things went about. It was maybe a dummies guide to sex or something. But I tell you what, I still have nightmares….!

Tonight before I get into bed, I apologise to my husband for what I am about to get into bed wearing……2 pairs of socks, a pair of thick, warm jogging bottoms, a sensible vest, a T-Shirt, with a hoody on top, and a hot water bottle, just to make sure he finds me the most attractive ever….. sexy ……..?!