Friday 27 January 2012
A Chancer that is. Mister Husband is, to borrow a much loved Irish phrase, a cute hoor. But I know him and his tactics well. He is a big fan of pester power, believing that if he persists long enough, he will wear me down. He is subtle in his approach and most times probably not even aware that he is doing it, but I am. He has taken a leaf out of one of my sister’s book. She too is a big fan of dropping a small hint and letting the other person think it was their idea in the first place. It’s not only vehicles that have blind spots, ya know. I have to check mine constantly for Mister Husband. Then, when I’m busy looking over my shoulders, the big Jolly Phonics * steps right off the kerb and in front of me. If I can just go off tangent here for a little bit. It’s all relevant, I promise, so hang on in there. I don’t think it’s necessary to draw your attention to the fact that we’ve got four kids. But I’ll repeat myself for the purpose of this post. Mister Husband and I have four Screecher Creatures, all boys, under 6. So you can appreciate how things can become hectic every now and again. Time has a different meaning altogether when you’re a parent. It’s a popular concept that everyone has the same 24 hours in their day. But I’m here to tell you that is Bull Shittttt. It might be true if we all get up at the same time every day but not all of us do. Not all of us fit in the same amount of work in that day either. When you’ve been up since 4am after a very broken night’s sleep, you know very well that 24 hours is a helluva lot longer than the average working person’s day. There’s a lot of slagging at my breast feeding group on a Tuesday morning about me going again or going for the girl. Indeed, Screecher Creature No. 1’s Priomhoide (School Principal to you and me!) very tongue in cheekily called me selfish last week when I said I wouldn’t be sending another Dooley (or at least a nee Dubhlaoich) member to her school. See, there’s light at the end of the tunnel for me now and for once it is not a train. I am running towards it, Sound of Music style, with my arms outstretched in greeting. Screecher Creature No. 2 will be starting school in September. Screecher Creature No. 3 will go to crèche a couple of mornings a week (hopefully) and then it will be just me and Screecher Creature No. 4. The nappy situation changed at Christmas. For the first time in four years, there is only one nappy wearer in our house. Already that person is fast approaching his first birthday. It’s all getting so much easier for me. I’ve got a nice exercise programme in hand, a bit of time to myself in the evenings to write down all the thoughts that occupy my brain during the day and scramble desperately to out shout the boys. I feel the world is my oyster. I can see the beginnings of a social life again. The future is so bright; I just might have to start wearing shades. And then Mister Husband stepped off the path and in front of my car which had been cruising along, a la Driving Miss Daisy. The cute hoor cherry picked his moment. I love the maternity documentary on Channel 4 called One Born Every Minute. It is fascinating, scary, heart-warming, educational and makes for desperately, desperately compelling viewing. I come away from it feeling just the tiniest bit broody and I swear, Mister Husband can smell it. Would you not have another one? Mister Husband flung his curve ball at me. I told him, quite honestly, that I would have two more in the morning, but I really don’t want to be pregnant ever again. Then he feked a truism at me; pregnancy only lasts 9 months. I looked at him through squinty eyes. What you talkin’ bout Willis? Ultimately, sez he in his cute hoor fashion, ultimately it’s up to you, it being your body but………….. I swear I could hear the car tyres screeching to a halt. He just kept on firing those curveballs at me. There’s a hole in the family. Oh, is there now, I asked him, still all warm and clucky from watching One Born Every Minute. And what do you expect me to do about it. He’s smooth, I’ll give him that. But I plugged in my smooth bullshit-ometer years ago and I let him talk. He mentioned he knew how appealing stopping at four is. He spoke of the recovery process afterwards, both mentally and physically and what a pain it is. He agreed that I’d have to go back to night feeds again (go back? I’m still doing them! But Mister Husband sleeps through them all. I rest my case!) And how I’m enjoying my “me time” again now that things are getting easier. Employing Super Nanny tactics is what he was doing. Ever notice the way Super Nanny compliments the knackered parents and soft soaps them before she pounces and goes in for the kill to tell them what a balls they’re making of family life? Mister Husband is a bit like that. He reminds you of the positives first so you’re all nice and compliant and less likely to kick up about the crap stuff. Buttering me up before hitting me with the million dollar question: would you not have one more? Look at how easy Brendan (aka Screecher Creature no. 4) is, how could you look at him and not want another one? Like I said, I’d have two more if I didn’t have to get pregnant first. One born every minute? This also applies to fools and I like to flatter myself that I am not one of those either!
*Jolly Phonics is our euphemism for Big Bollix.
Wednesday 25 January 2012
Davina, there’s no easy way to say this, but I reckon I may have found a new exercise buddy! You just might have to up your game. What do you make of that? See, my new book was waiting for me when I got home from my lovely group Tuesday morning. It sports the very eye catching title of Run Fat Bitch, Run! The author was on with Ray D’Arcy at the start of the month which was probably no coincidence as everyone goes through a crazed get fit quick New Year promise. I liked the sound of her immediately. She had me wanting to throw the spatula I held in my hand into the sink, whip up a batch of crisp sandwiches for the lad’s lunch and go running around my garden. I could do that, I thought. I could run. I bloody reckon I could! I’ve got the runners, I’ve got the gear, I’ve even got the time on Saturdays and Sundays, darn it (as my kids say) I. Can. Do. This. By this, I mean running. All I need to do, apparently, is take the walking up a notch for a couple of sessions, and then run a lamp post, walk a lamp post etc. My legs will be screaming the first couple of times I do it, but eventually, (eventually) I’ll be able to run my walking circuit quite comfortably. I believe I’m going to give it a shot! But first things first, I needed to get my hands on this new bible. The first couple of times I asked for the book I apologised in advance. With a title like that I was afraid the shop assistants would think I was insulting them or just winding them up. They did laugh the first time I asked for it but took me at my word that is it a legitimate book and went to check on their computer. Alas, the computer used to say no. It wasn’t in stock. The lady in the book shop in Kilkenny threw her hands up to heaven and then touched her head off the counter when I asked her did they have it. Alarmed, I thought she was going to deck me for calling her a fat bitch (she wasn’t) but when she looked at me through bored eyes, she told me that everyone wants to run. The book had come in but sold out again on the same day. I was thrilled. It must be good so! After a week of pestering the girls in Carlow, they used to see me coming and just shake their heads at me, letting me know that no; the book hadn’t arrived in yet. I never needed to go past the door. Actually, now might be a good time to return to that shop and hunt down the young wan that more or less called me a liar and told me that it hadn’t even left the warehouse yet, so how could Kilkenny be sold out. I’ll bring my brand new copy and wave it in her face! There’s a lovely, comforting section in the book on how to release your inner bitch and make her work for you, so I will blame that. I say comforting because my inner beeatch gets released on a very regular basis indeed, but Ruth (my new VBF!) sez this is ok. In fact, it is necessary in order to psych yourself up. I just need to make sure I don’t shut mine up with chocolate! So it transpired that Dublin have loads of the books in stock. (They would!) But I couldn’t wait for She Who Lives In Maynooth But Works In The Big Smoke to make her journey home with one for me so I bought it online. It was dispatched to me on Saturday afternoon and was in my house Tuesday morning. Now that’s quick! On the inside it says that it was first published in 2012 (that would be this year) and reprinted. Twice! And it’s still January! There will be nothing done in my house over the next day or two while I drink coffee and read it! The Screecher Creatures will never see so many jigsaws and DVD’s again. I might have to leave out little piles of junk food for them to snack on. I don’t care who complains to Social Services about me. This book is obviously the Holy Grail when it comes to running. Some people think running is like whistling, you just put your lips together and blow, or in this case, put one foot in front of the other and run. But I intend to do it in style. Jesus, by the end of the summer, I intend to be able to run and whistle at the same time. Now, stop talking about it Gwen, and run fat bitch, run!
Monday 23 January 2012
Wife upset – Advice needed please!
No sex Drive
Rant! Rant! Rant!!
What’s her problem?
Not sure I like my Wife anymore!
I was browsing through my favourite parenting website the other day and all of the above made my heart stop and then resume its normal pace with frightening alacrity! The big bastard! I thought. He’s been on here. Giving out! About me! 5 times!!
What’s his problem?
See, over the past 6 months, all of the above have and still do refer to me! Needless to say, they weren’t desperate cries for help to the nation from my long suffering and very tolerant husband. But they could have been and he would have been perfectly within his right. (But don’t tell him I said that!)
There are a few things (mainly one, big huge thing really) that becomes clear when you enter motherhood. You develop multiple personalities. Handy for when you’re stuck at home day in day out with no-one else to talk to except your baby, but otherwise they just land you in the soup.
We’ll take them one by one. Wifey upset. Happens all the time. Double that when Junior enters the picture. I like to blame the hormones.
Picture it. It’s the second month in a row, and you’re still getting up at 5am with your older child, having spent every night of the same two months up and down like a yo-yo feeding the baby as well. (Have to add here – when you breastfeed, there are some things that just come with the job) But you would like your other half to maybe, just maybe, especially when the baby is still sleeping and most likely will stay that way for another hour, get up in the morning with your oldest, once or twice without prompt.
But it hasn’t happened. At all. And Mister Husband comes in from work, has the audacity to put his car keys in the fruit bowl instead of just on the table where he normally puts them, and you turn into a rabid mess.
You just let rip and tear him to shreds over the misplacement of his keys when instead what you’re really upset about is the fact that you’re knackered and would like some help in the mornings. He’s supposed to know this though. Well, I don’t expect much from Mister Husband. He did, after all, go to college for several years. Mind reading surely came up on the curriculum at some stage!
No sex drive. Ahem! Red faced here. This was one big eye-opener for me when kids came along. You’re always tired anyway, and when they go to bed at 8pm, your day is kind of over too. You have the demands that breastfeeding brings which basically translates into Mother Nature ensuring there will be no other pregnancy until this baby is weaned. Thus leaving you with a scant or no sex drive. This is, without a doubt, the hardest, most miserable and lonely side of parenting for him. It’s difficult for us wimmin too, because you feel guilty. Guilty for the feeling of utter dread that washes over you when you hear his footsteps on the stairs. Guilty for the resentment that is borne from his getting a full eight hours and you being lucky if you manage three before you have to get up to tend to the baby.
But not guilty enough to do much about it. I admit this openly. I am selfish in this regard. The only time I get any kind of space to myself, both mentally and physically, is in bed. Alone. I guard it fiercely.
Rant! Rant! Rant! Well, now the world is his oyster on this one. He could have complained about there being no dinner on the table some evenings. But he wouldn’t dare! (The toasted sandwiches and drop scones might disappear)
He could have decided to moan about the fact that there are two (sometimes three) separate laundry baskets in the house and the kids washing and mine comes before his own. But he wouldn’t dare! (He might have to do his own laundry!)
He could have gotten pernickety over my ignorance about the workings of a car and how I call him whenever I have a flat tyre/battery/need diesel. Just today for example, I called him from outside his office and got him to watch out the window and talk me through parallel parking!
But he wouldn’t! (For fear of having to drive me everywhere)
He could have complained bitterly about my many and fluctuating mood swings and how I can turn on a dime. But he wouldn’t dare! (He just wouldn’t!)
And the what’s her problem?? problem? He could get the kids over this one! We’re lucky (or mad) enough to be building our own home and he is doing all the work in relation to it! Just as well really as I still don’t know if there are four or five bedrooms! It involves long hours at the office followed by more hours on site. (Then in the pub) Sorry – that one sneaked in there!
I am lucky enough to be a stay at home mammy thanks to him. I am lucky enough to have my own car. Thanks to him. I have a nice house and will get an even nicer one. Thanks to him.
So I should stop handing him the baby as soon as he walks in the door in the evenings so I can put on/take out a wash, change the beds, sweep the floor, get kids clothes ready for bath and bedtime and the following morning, put clothes to be aired in the hot press, take out the bin, put away the breakfast dishes, Hoover and get out of my pyjamas.
I should, under no circumstances, start babbling on about the trivial but amusing to me, conversation I had with the girl in Penney’s until he’s had his chance to relax.
So, looking back on it all, I realise I have nothing to complain about at all. It doesn’t stop me though.
And the Not Sure I Like my Wife Anymore? See all of the above!!
Yes, parenthood can be an incredibly petty and resentful time. You’ll probably find you argue a lot more and over the slightest things. BC (Before Childer) you were never one to hold a grudge, but suddenly you can tick off all the early mornings you, and you alone, got up to deal with the kids, all the pub hours he put in while you were sat at home under the baby. Alone.
You will notice everything he does and doesn’t do.
My mother in law had these words of advice for me once; Pick your battles. Trouble is, with me I want to win them all!!
Friday 20 January 2012
You can be in my gang if you are of a “certain” age and admit to being as confused as I am about the following: (A smidgeon of disinterest as to what the answers are is a bonus!)
Who the hell is Tulisa and where did she come out of?
Same question for Justin Bieber.
What’s a kettlebell?
Do you not get dizzy when you “spin?”
Is Zumba not a type of smoothie?
Can you tell the difference between Ryan Gosling and Ryan Reynolds?
Do you “get” the Twilight craze? Do you not think the two lads are a bit creepy looking? And isn’t she the surliest looking young wan you’ve seen since your own teenage years?
What the hell is a jaeger bomber?
Have you the first idea about Twitter?
Have you mastered prescriptive text?
None of the above makes any sense to me either. Having said that, Face Book was giving me Freddy Krueger moments too but I gave it a lash, Jack. I am a very recent and new convert to this most excellent social networking site and I am loving it! I picked it up quickly enough, but only after a certain amount of trepidation it has to be said, so I reckon there is hope for me yet. But I was kicked into touch recently and reminded of how time is marching on, for me at least, when I opened a magazine. I don’t mind admitting that I am partial to a certain “older woman’s” magazine because I love the crossword in it, so I surprised even myself when I picked up a “glossy”. The first thing I liked about it was, it would fit neatly in my bag and the second reason I decided to buy it was because I recognised the cover girl from That 70’s Show.
I knew I should have stuck to the boring magazine. I just felt old when I finished reading it. And exhausted. Jesus, I don’t ever remember things being that hard in my mid 20’s and through to my 30’s. The pressure! I wanted to write in and tell them about a favourite expression of mine, “don’t sweat the small stuff.” The whole thing made having four kids look easy! And right in the middle of it was some kind of sexiest actor poll thingy. In my day David Boreanaz (Jesus, I am old!) was at the top of his game and came in a clear head and shoulders above all the rest but there wasn’t even a whisper of him in this magazine. The kids of today probably never even heard of Buffy the Vampire Slayer and I’d be willing to bet good money too that it pisses all over that Twilight stuff! I couldn’t even tell you who was the number one hot shot in the magazine, mainly because I had never heard of him. Like 90 per cent of all the others. Does nobody smile anymore? Contrary looking fuckers, the whole lot of them! Now admittedly I watch little or no television these days but even back then, I would have been, at the very least, vaguely aware of who various famous people were. Today, definitely not so much. I picked up a bag of “retro sweets” the other day. Part of me was transported back into nostalgia land and the other part of me just sighed in acceptance. You know you’re old when you used to eat “retro sweets.” But they were called Black Jacks, Fruit Salads and Refreshers back then. Right now, Nevin Maguire is making chocolate biscuit cake and I am ready, with pen poised to take down the recipe. This is what I am reduced to. My life is just filled with so many different levels of excitement, I don’t know where to begin.
I knew though, that I had lost all hope of redemption when, one day, I admired the outfit Angelina Ballerina’s teacher was wearing. Betcha thought I was going to say Angelina Jolie! (That woman is just far too smug looking for my liking.) For those of you who don’t know, Angelina Ballerina is an annoying little mouse who is rapidly catching up on that other bratty Pig Peppa in the obnoxious stakes.
So if you can remember the original Pippa in Home and Away, your house didn’t have a Soda Stream and you coveted your best friends, there’s a place for you in my gang. My arms are outstretched in greeting to those who used to eat Peggy’s Legs.
Anyone who has ever threatened to Cut The Legs off their kids can just skip the queue and come right on up to the front and sit beside me. You’ll be in good company, old friend. Very good company indeed.
Monday 16 January 2012
Two things became clear to me over the weekend; to be forever cemented in my grey matter. The first one didn’t come as much of a surprise as I am no stranger to its benefits. Exercise. I found out I need it. Similar to the way a person needs a nicotine hit first thing in the morning, closely followed by a coffee chaser, I need exercise. But I more or less took the week off. I did my class on Tuesday and after that, nothing. Boy did I feel it! I woke up on Saturday morning last and not only was I like an old woman of 90, I was in the horrors. Mister Husband has a collection of colourful phrases of which he likes to make regular use and the most fitting one for Saturday morning was, “she’d ate ye without salt.” And all because I decided I couldn’t be arsed enough to get my arse in gear and do the required 30 minutes of exercise three times a week that is needed for me to keep a sane head on my shoulders. Some of you may have ascertained by now that I am a Davina fan. I don’t have a strong opinion about her one way or another but I do like her workout ethic. You’d also have to admit that she looks pretty great and she herself attributes a lot of that to her training. Mister Husband bought me her Three Thirty Minute workouts last summer and admittedly, I’ve never gotten past the first 30 minutes, but it has helped me to shed over a stone and a half. (If this is advertising/endorsement or whatever the “clebs” call it, Davina, please feel free to contact my unfriendly bank manager for my details. Thanks a mill, love). Anyway, back to the point I was trying to make. I was doing my own head in so I decided for all concerned, I had better get out and blow the contrary cobwebs away with a good power walk. And by Jesus, I was less than 10 minutes down the road and I could feel it working! So imagine the brand new woman, wife and mother that returned home a further 20 minutes or so later. Mister Husband received strict instructions to make sure, in future, I stick to this routine, no matter how much I hem and haw. Between you, me and the wall (apologies here, Davina) but I much prefer to exercise out in the fresh air than working out to a DVD in the dark, the only light in the room being that from the PC monitor as I huff and puff my way through the 30 minute routine trying not to waken Screecher Creature No. 4 who is sleeping in his cot. The other revelation didn’t come as a surprise to me either as I’d heard all the rumours and old wives tales surrounding gin and how it’s a depressant. But I was disappointed nonetheless. I treated myself to a bottle of gin over the Christmas. It was my first Christmas in 6 years where I wasn’t pregnant and by God was I going to enjoy a tipple. Wine goes straight to my head and puts me to sleep faster than you can say “chardonnay.” Beer is nice and all but I fancied something tastier so G&T it was. I would wait until the Screecher Creatures were gone to bed, in fact, there was an evening or two where they were putting on their jammies, and I was pouring myself a measure. The boys would come running, attracted by the hiss of the tonic bottle being opened. God love them, fizzy drinks don’t get invited into our house and they got great craic out of submerging the slice of lemon in my drink, to raise the bubbles. The novel innocence of them all. So yeah, I used to partake of a G&T of an evening when the Screecher Creatures were in bed. And it was lovely. One was all I needed and it seems one is all it takes. I didn’t have one for 2 nights in a row. As a little experiment I indulged on Friday night and on Saturday morning I had my results. We have to go our separate ways. I have fallen out with gin big time. It looks like Mister Husband is going to get his inheritance after all. He has been eying up my liquor since I brought it home, but was severely warned to stay away. I’m not too bothered. Me and alcohol parted company a long time ago and I have gotten used to being a teetotaller. I certainly don’t miss the hangovers. But then again, in those days I had the luxury of being able to sleep one off. Not anymore. So goodbye, G&T’s. It was nice knowing (and drinking!) ya. Mister Husband wouldn’t be a big fan of the hot ports so I might invest in a bottle of that!
Friday 13 January 2012
Oi! You over there! Yes, you, chewing on that wad of gum as if your life depended on it. What is wrong with you that you can’t dispose of it properly? Would it really have taken that much out of you to wrap it up in a piece of paper and put it in a bin instead of spitting it out on the street? How disgusting! Do you know how much I dislike finding your used, gluey sweet stuck to the soles of my shoes and on the wheels of my buggy? Today there was a lump of it stuck to the handle of the shopping trolley I was using. Are you as repulsive as your nasty habit? Does it cross your mind at all, where your gum ends up after you hock it out onto the ground? What about the animals that fall foul of your vile littering? Have you ever paused for a moment to look at a bird whose claws are glued together with a lump of hardened cement thanks to your laziness?
And consider this. When you couldn’t be bothered doing the right thing in a café but instead, stick your gob of gum under the table, think for a minute of the people who will sit there after you. The people with small kids. Mine, for example, tend to pick off your masticated mess and horror of manky horrors, pop it in their own mouths. What do you think of that? Not very nice, is it? I bet you wouldn’t appreciate being served your drink in a lipstick stained glass. I bet you’d be off like hot snot to demand that your drink is replaced. So why do you think it’s ok to be so filthy and unhygienic with your chewy stuff. For the love of god, people, if it’s not too much to ask, would you please, put your chung gum in the bin where it belongs after you’re done with it, and not on our footpaths or anywhere else. Right?
And while I’m all fired up and on the subject of litter. I live in hope of one day catching the bastard who sees fit to dump black plastic bags of rubbish in the countryside. My countryside. You are a pig! Pure and simple. The stuff I see scattered on the roadside is not debris blown from domestic bins. A Christmas tree, a toaster and a microwave oven were just some of the discarded junk I saw this week alone. It astounds me how people think it is ok to chuck their refuse out of their car for someone else to take care of. Crows sorting through mounds of nappies spilling out of a burst bag is a pathetic sight. And for those of you who are not in the know, there are free recycling bins in the town for your glass waste. Would the scumbag who abandoned that box of empty beer bottles, please take note? The drainage ditch is not the place for anyone’s trash. What gives you the right? My two and a half year old knows not to throw litter anywhere other than the bin. Wise up to yourself. You might be here for a good time but I want this world to be here for a long time. I want this world to be here for my kids and their kids to enjoy when we’re long gone. I don’t think that’s too big an ask.
Have a bit of respect! For yourself if not for the people who populate the area you are soiling with your dregs.
I’m royally pissed off now so I’m going to keep going and get a couple more things off my chest. They might be slightly off topic but, does anyone in top manufacturing companies actually think things through at all? For instance, it is not cool, it is not clever, it most certainly is not appreciated that you put paint for children in a tube, and in teeny tiny print declare that it is not suitable for finger painting! FFS!! What do you think little kids are going to do with it? Be careful? Lemme tell ya, I had green hands for 36 hours. Green! 36! It was Christmas week lads! Come on! My kids were like miniature Incredible Hulks. And just so you know, for future reference, because you clearly do not test run these things, the paint is not “in” the fekin brush! Same topic but different piece of merchandise. I’m talking about hand held paint pens where the child squeezes them and the paint comes out like toothpaste. The clue to what will happen is in the instructions. Same as that old chestnut where every action has an opposite and equal reaction. In this case; all over the friggin’ place. You might like to change your tagline. If you want to invent an item that does exactly as it says on the tin, have a go at something useful. Like, I dunno, off the top of my head, clothes for teething babies perhaps. In particular, something that has a built in bib or some sort of absorbent fabric in the chest area for excess soakage, for example.
I’m just sayin’ is all. These might just be a couple of things to consider over your next big brain storming session. Goodnight. Over and out! Where’s me gin?
Tuesday 10 January 2012
What’s in yours?
Handbag that is. I had a look in mine today and this is what I found.
Pair of socks. Child size. (Dirty)
Pair of socks. My size. (Clean)
Chocolate wrapper. (Empty)
Bottle of Nurofen. Orange flavour. (Not empty)
Toy car. (Broken)
Crumpled Butlers Mint Praline Wrapper. (Empty) (Yum yum)
Two baby spoons.
Two mouth organs (!!)
Two plastic dinosaurs, 3 McDonald’s Happy Meal toys, 5 Kinder egg toys.
Tube of hand cream. (Almost empty)
Wallet. (Most definitely empty)
A syringe for the Nurofen.
Two tissues. (Used) (Yuk!)
A cloth convenience bag.
A nappy. (Clean!)
A packet of wipes. (Half empty)
Two pairs of gloves. (My size)
Four pairs of gloves. (Child size)
Another wallet. (Not empty) (Much)
Tube of Savlon. (Past its expiry date)
Several receipts for several shops.
Packet of Jelly Tots. (Unopened)
Packet of Milky Way Stars. (Also unopened)
A baby rattle.
A shopping list.
A small tub of Vaseline.
A tube of lip gloss. (Old)
Teeny tiny tub of Sudocreme. (Opened)
A couple of Savlon anti-septic wipes. (Unused)
Several pens. Some working. Some not. Some without lids.
Money off coupons.
Two packets of tissues. One opened.
A scarf. (Mine)
Some dried leaves. (??)
A picture my son did in school.
A CeeBeebies magazine.
A mouse trap. Do not ask.