Friday, 24 December 2010

Caked in sh*t, absolutely caked in it now.

So it is never gonna be the best look, wandering around in the supermarket with your cardigan buttoned up on the wrong holes, and your flies wide open…..but someone has to do it, and that someone was me…..The awful thing was, at the till, I looked down to see what Mitzi had picked up and was showing me, it was then, that I realised my flies were undone, and the buttons were on the wrong holes. Now the dilemma; do I surreptitiously do up the zip and commence re-buttoning cardigan session? Or do I carry on regardless. I had to carry on regardless, I would have looked extremely odd, what would people have thought, if I had started to zip up my trousers and unbutton my cardy in public? I can only conclude, that this kind of look is fairly understandable for a mother of 4, which is why no-one was kind enough to mention it to me, they just let me carry on as if it were completely normal to be out in public like that!

We were caked in sh*t, absolutely caked in it now. 4pm, and we are all, including me, heading for a huge bath. Please put down any food products before reading any further this blog, and those who have sensitive epiglotis’, please read do not read on……….! It had all begun in the garden, which had been well in order, spending some outdoor time. In the holidays the kids take over, it is absolutely a chicken/dog and child coo that is going on in my house as we speak. We were clearing up the garden, after all the rain, the garden is bog and swamp. So I was on a mission. We cleaned out the chicken house, got covered in pooh, straight to the outside tap and I hose them down, noticing that Esmie has somehow managed to strip herself off from the waist down, bare feet, the lot. I roll my eyes and consider for a few seconds if it is worth getting her re-dressed, or is it mild enough that I can just bloody well get on with what I am doing for once…?! But when in doubt, put your clothes on I say (except when you do not want to draw any more unwanted attention to yourself at supermarket tills)…..So re-dressing session is on. And I am back in action. We gather up all the leaves, scooping up a huge pile, I wonder why it was so squishy, and realize I have just scooped up a load of dog pooh. Wonderful! Thankfully I took the brunt of it, as I was on the brink of hoying them at Mitzi who was having more fun throwing the leaves, than clearing them! A little later on, hand washed 7 times by now, I am still feeling violated by the amount of pooh I have had to deal with today, and I watch Mitzi climb a tree. I go over to help her, put my hand under her boot, smell pooh, and see it is all over her boot (the one I just went at enthusiastically to grab), rendering my hand once more full of shit and round 2 of sterilization procedures commence……Mitzi is stripped, and on our way in she slips, and falls on the top of the sand pit lid and smothers pooh down her face and her hand. Omg, how did we manage it??!

A wee while later, (surprisingly I had not given up on the day!) we head down to the post office to pick up a parcel, which has arrived from England. On the way out, I ran over the stupid dog! He was doing his usual barking, pleading with me not to leave him there “Please don’t leave me, you don’t understand…….” “Take me with you, oh pleaseeeeeeeeee take me with you” and do you know what I did? I looked at him in the rear view mirror, with the indicator on (yes, I am English, and I do use my indicator! (see earlier blog)), and I took pity on him, so I reversed, expecting the dog to back track, he did not, and this where I hear a bump! And the dog runs off his tail between his legs. I am horrified, utterly, utterly horrified, and (thankfully remembering to put the hand brake on), I run out to see what I have broken. Praises be, there was no damage, and the dog lives to bark another day……..But I was not in the most optimal of spirits, and drove like an old, old lady would, the whole way to the shop. This weekend will be Christmas! And the excitement in my house is uncontainable, we will be going up to my husband’s best friend’s parents’ house (did you follow that?!) for a night in Orthez, 45 minutes further inland. I am very excited; the house is a haven for us! With kids around it can’t help make you realise what Christmas is really about, and it is both brilliant, and knackering! Have a very, very Happy Christmas everyone!

Wednesday, 22 December 2010

“Look over there, there is a badger with a gun!”

It was all going so well, it really was as well, until Esmie nicked off with the apparently “kiddie friendly” scissors, I spilt my tea, got mud all over the freshly clean sheets, I saw the cats had emptied 4 litres of milk by clawing at the bottles and drinking it as it was (look away dad) pissing out milk. No other way to describe the chaotic scene. Oh, and the chickens were stalking out food in the garage, flapping about wildly, and poohing on my clean washing. The holidays are going extremely well, as you can see... I put the kids to bed what seems like bloody hours ago (well 5 seconds peace in this house feels like a lifetime!), and they are still banging around, shouting out things upstairs, and Lola is now calling down asking for glue…….This may require some adult attention, I shall do the motherly bit and get back to the blog in a bit!

I have a friend who has just had a baby, it has made me extremely broody…..Yes I know, 4 kids and still broody. But there you go, it’s a fact! It is about all I can do to stop myself from saying to her, “Look over there, there is a badger with a gun!”, and whilst she is distracted, grabbing the baby, telling all the kids to get in the car quick, I have just got them a new baby in the family! But I realise I would most likely be institutionalized were I to do this, and the baby stays……..! The kids are all at ages now where they can do most things for themselves. It obviously makes things easier for me, but the fact that my 2-year-old daughter can do her buttons up all by herself, is somewhat worrying. As this must surely speak volumes about the fact that the more kids you have, the less they are noticed, the more they have to do from such an early age for themselves….! And I thought I did some good hanging out with Esmie?! It is evidently never enough attention that I give her. This is proved to me today, when after having snuck off with the child-scissors, I hear her calling, “Mummy, I’ve cut hair me, look!” and thereupon I see blond clumps of hair, strewn across the floor, like a scene from a shit hairdresser’s….! I gasp, as I witness the self-haircutted child, who is standing there looking at me, proud as punch,  She has given herself a small Mohican going on on the top, a few clumps are missing from around the ears, and the hair at the back has a big step in. Fandabidosey! I am going to have to put my hairdressing skills into practice in the morning, before making pots and pots of mango and apple chutney for fun, painting another wardrobe “eggshell” white, making Christmas necklaces with kids, Monty has ordered a treasure hunt, oh, and the normal cooking for 6 and housework that never goes away on a daily basis!

As it is the holidays, I am constantly reminded how many children and animals there are in this one little house…..! The chickens were nesting in the giant sandpit, having a bit of a sand bath, the dog was barking at Monty and me, Lola was on the swing (almost fully recovered from her rope burns the other day I am pleased to report!). Lola is not the bravest, and any little thing will send her down. The other day, just before I went to hospital with Mitzi, I hear a blood curdling cry from the garden, like a bat out of hell I was, throwing myself out into the garden, expecting to see a child with broken everything…….This was Lola’s reaction to her rope burns, so you see what I mean?

So there you have it, the Christmas holidays, woo hoo! I am hoping next year will bring the mending of my car, as I have been “demoted” to using Alex’s surf mobile… is not so much the exhaust falling off, the noise is, well, distinctive! Or the fact that it is a squish for all and sundry to fit in, it’s more the fact that you cannot even touch your feet on the floor, it is such a tip! (He is always flying in and out, so to be fair he does not have any time to do much a bout it, and it is mainly strewn with collated leaflets that fell about too much, got soaked by the torrential rain, that sort of thing…!) In fact, the exhaust has been fixed, so I am exaggerating a little, but it stayed in such a way for a good year…..The times I had to drop the kids off at school with mothers looking out for a steam railway train coming into the school car park, I avoid eye contact, and bundle everyone out, although I know I have been spotted…The shame! It did get to the point that Esmie would exclaim, “OOo Daddy home!” and then roughly 8 minutes later, daddy to pull into the drive…..It was noisy. And so is this house! But I cannot wait till Christmas, and tonight (which I had better go and get on with), we are starting the present wrapping marathon (4 kids= lots of presents!). Alex decided we should make a night of it, and nipped out to get a beer, he has walked back in with the most appropriately named drink for this house “Desperado”. Brilliant, desperado and paper/scissors/scelotape, here I come!

Monday, 20 December 2010

Typical peaceful Sunday then.......

I was in the middle of painting a cupboard “eggshell” white, a wall green, making cheesy omelets X6 people, with our own Margo eggs, nursing a daughter with burns (rope burn, she came down the swing too fast…), a daughter with puss oozing out of her ear, waiting for Alex to get back so I could go to hospital. Typical peaceful Sunday then. I bend down to pick something up, and SMACK! Crack my head on the stairs. Physical injuries galore, Alex gets in so I bellow some finishing off the bread baking instructions in my absence, and head off to hospital with the 3 girls, Monty wanted to stay with his dad. I explain to the nurse on reception at A and E (she has obviously had her mouth sewn together to prevent her from cracking the merest hint of a smile ever again in her entire life….), that Mitzi has not slept a wink all night, agony with ear, puss streaming out with gloggy bits and everything, when she looks at me and says quite curtly “Oh, so not an emergency then?” I am scolded. Wrist slapped well and truly, why didn’t I just slap her back and have over with it?!

In the waiting room in A&E, I am surrounded by vomiting children, A&E with a tummy bug…have you ever heard of such a thing? And the nurse was funny with me bringing Mitzi in?  But the “Gastro” in France is a major OMG! Panic! And get yourself airlifted into hospital.  I often hear mothers going on about the fact that little Olivier/Remi/Mathilde etc have the “Gastro”, almost whispering as they say it, frowning and other mums responding with overly concerned faces and arm rubs like it’s some kind of Taboo disease that no-one has ever had before or since…….A common old garden tummy bug. I shrink down into my jumper and pull the girls close, putting my hands over their mouths, in an attempt to block the airborne germs from these kids. As I suffocate my 3, a mother gets out a pot of baby food, a spoon, a bib, and starts trying to feed her child (who was puking on entry) a pot of fluorescent vegetables….. forcing a spoonful in, as the kid is writhing around avoiding eating it, it finally swallows (it doesn’t really have a choice to be fair), goes crossed eyed and then projectile vomits across the waiting room, all down her mum and dad and herself. “Eeeewwww! That’s rank”, I say, I can’t help myself, it really was. And the parents busy themselves clearing up the puke overhearing “bleughs” and people shuffling well away in their seats. Mitzi will have to see an ear specialist, as this is the 4th time in as many weeks she has had this infection. Bless her. Mitzi (the 3rd child of 4) is always the one getting into scrapes/ear infections/allergic reactions to anything/bumps/burns, you name it, she’s done it. If there is any illness ever in the family, it is usually Mitzi who has it! I don’t know why, I guess these things happen no matter how much you try and be careful/avoid things/wrap them literally in cotton wool (it didn’t work btw).

I reverse out of the drive (trying not to kill the dog, as he runs around frantically barking, desperate for us not to go out and leave him (although we will be back in less than an hour, it visibly hurts the dog every time we leave without him!)) maybe he is saying “Please don’t leave, you don’t know what they’re like, the cats and the chickens when you’re out, they can actually talk, and they hate me…..” Or maybe he’s not…….! Last week we had several eggs from Margo, most of them found in the car, in Esmie’s car seat. One was in the well of the driver’s seat in Alex’s car. He said he was off, to which I told him he might want to remove the egg from beneath the brakes before he goes, and let the chicken out of the car at the same time……Alex is extremely squeamish about chickens, so the chickens are my remit. He is actually, and I quote;  “Proper freaked out by them”! So I physically have to force him to get the egg. It’s good for him to confront his phobias, especially as we will be getting 4 more chicks in the spring (he doesn’t know this yet, he will probably read about it in my blog!). He pulls his scarf up over his mouth, turns his back to the egg, pulls his sleeve over his hand, and reaches in squeezing his eyes shut. This is a grown man, a father of 4. This could be his finest moment, and look at him………! (O.k, I know I am mocking you, honey, but you know you are my hero really!) He grabs the egg and hands it straight to me, “Oooh, it’s still warm, look” and he says he knows and can’t help himself borking a bit. He’s better with hippos, he tells me. So, hippo land here we come, or maybe we should open one in our back garden?......Hmmmmm I think I might be on to something!