mayhemmuddleshttps://muddlingthroughthemayhemofmotherdom.wordpress.comI am the owner of two bonkers, brilliant and boisterous boys O (4.5) and F (3), the ever so slightly more boisterous of the two. I currently live in Catalonia, Spain but dream of returning to the UK ...
I love wine, cheese, fabric, trashy tv and writing. I love writing for children, although there are always complaints from the boys that there are no Ninja Turtles in my stories....
Just in case I haven’t mentioned it enough on social media or to anyone who has crossed my path (no matter how random), I went to Mumsnet Blogfest 2015 on Saturday and it was out of this world AMAZING! I went there like an overly excited teenager allowed out for the first time with no curfew (I even emptied my bag of squashed bananas and pants but seemed to miss the transformers poster, loo roll and a wind-up super Mario) and I left floating on inspiration, coffee, amazing line-ups and a few and a half bubbles or four.
TEN THINGS I LEARNT FROM BLOGFEST 2015
If you have really bad circulation, don’t forget your super duper thermal tights, underwear and portable duvet as it will probably snow on your way there.
(I know it looks suspiciously like dandruff , but I promise it really did snow!… honest…..)
2. You will feel incredibly extra important when handed your name badge. You have an identity! You’re nobody’s Mum for the whole day, well you obviously are, but nobody is going to come and wipe their snot on your face or cry because you took the stairs and not the escalator (Unless you are extremely unlucky)
3. The line-up was overwhelmingly amazing, just incredible. I was a star-struck fan during every talk, presentation and session, hanging on to every word like an over amorous monkey.
4. That we are our own worst enemy. We need to believe in ourselves and big ourselves and everybody else up daily, if not hourly. ( I wanted to write minute-ly but it didn’t look right; as you can see.)
5. Everybody has a story to tell and there are some incredibly brave people out there and if by sharing your experiences it helps just one person then you’re doing a better than great job.
6.You won’t go hungry or thirsty; the food was out of this world delicious , coffee was on tap and there was a whole table dedicated to puddings and chocolate. AMAZING!
(There are no photos of the food as I was too busy snaffling it up and whistling the tune to Gojetters when people commented on how fast the chocolate cakes were going)
7. Margaret Atwood got up at 4:44am her time, (US) to talk to us via live link. She rocks!
(She’s on the screen! Looking over us all! Amazing!)
*Please excuse rubbish out of focus photos, I was too giddy with excitement and couldn´t stop wobbling!
8. The team who organise Blogfest have magic powers. From the outside, it looked flawless, they were unflappably awesome and very helpful and patient when dealing with slightly lost and confused bloggers. (I’m talking about “my friend” of course)
9. I may have a teeny tiny columnist crush on one of the speakers, who in his book “How to be Beth´s a husband” wrote an ace message and it is one that was reiterated by every speaker and panelist. Nobody ever made it big through watching Homes under the Hammer or This Morning.. (Note to self to tell afore mentioned “friend” from point 8….)
10. Take seven and a half incredibly large suitcases to house all the amazingly fab goodies you will end up with including a ping pong ball, a swanky Boden brolly, posh body lotions and a jar of festive mayonnaise and LOADS of chocolate. Unfortunately, there is no photographic evidence as I was pounced on whilst walking in though the door by two over zealous hooligans who ran off with my loot , leaving me with nothing but my name badge. (“Why doesn’t it say Mu-mm-eeeee? Who’s Bet-Han?”).
“They showed no remorse.”
10b: Don’t be put off by the price. It is worth every single penny. If you saw any of those speakers on their own, you would pay the ticket price for each show, also if you ate and drank the quantity that’s on offer, you would spend six times that. I had to bully ask various family members for the ticket and train fare as my Christmas present and I shall forever be indebted. While we’re on the topic, If anybody’s stuck for ideas for my birthday……
When I had two children under two, and people dared ask me how I was. ( A dangerous question to ask any parent at the best of times.) To save the enquirer from a badly scripted episode of Eastenders meets Show me Show me (your leaky boobs and sore bits) I replied with “Tired!” one word, that is all. To which they would reply “Oh! You’re always tired!” and waltz off with sparks of wide awakeness turbo power shooting off their trainers.
At the time I was too blinking zonked to muster a reaction, four and a half years later I am still tired but I think familiarity numbs the pain so it kind of moulds into your grey face and you wear it like pants, necessary but not always comfortable.
WHAT TIRED MEANS
You catch sight of Ronald Macdonald on smack in the rear view mirror and remember you haven’t washed off the make over you were given by the nearly 2 year old and the dogs three days earlier.
Instead of people cooing into the pram they are giving you sympathetic looks, not because they feel your sleepless pain but because you have a pair of George Pig pants on your head.
If you do manage to shower, you will probably do so at least 3 times in the space of seven minutes as you can’t actually remember if you did or not.
Trying to breastfeed the non breastfeeding toddler and wondering why the new born is refusing Thomas the Tank Engine spaghetti shapes.
Making plans to meet somebody for coffee , getting ready early, putting your coat on, sitting down to feed the newborn and put the toddler’s shoes on. You taste the fresh hot coffee , you savour the hilarious adult conversations then you wake up to 27 missed calls , a jumping Yo Gabba Gabba DVD and the local cavalry hammering at the door.
Taking it personally that not everybody likes mushed carrots and Weetabix for dinner.
Putting big boy pants on the 3 month old and a nappy on the potty trained one and not realising until in the middle of a very hot and busy IKEA.
Even if your dress is on back to front and inside out. You need to be given praise! Flowers, knighthoods, trophies. You made it out of the house, Woop! You rock!
Worrying you are entering new levels of eyesight problems, before remembering you are showering with your glasses on.
Bursting into tears when a child falls over or sings, especially if it isn’t yours.
Being annoyed by everybody and anything. Especially the person who is 50 per cent responsible for the state you’re in.
When somebody says “Rest when they are sleeping” you are enjoying the image of doing your most ninja powered moves directly where it hurts and then you realise you might actually have carried them out and are too knackered to run.
Forgetting you drove to the supermarket and wondering why you forgot the sling and pram whilst carrying two wriggly, hungry, screaming children home, which is a long way away.
Taking a photo of the two cars parked either side of yours and sending an SOS whatsapp to anybody in the vicinity to please come and get your car out of the squeeze.
Listening to veterans of parenthood, who promise that it really is all worth it and realising that they are possibly most definitely right.
I don’t really do selfies. Not as a rule but in general I try to avoid seeing what I look like of a day as to not feel guilty about the sight I am inflicting upon others. (Think Wurzel Gummage crossed with an overly tired moomin). Although it might be handy if I did do selfies more regularly to avoid going out with Mr Tumble stickers stuck to my forehead and also to realise that my dress was on back to front ALL DAY LONG.
However, the other night whilst perusing my phone it came to my attention that one of us, namely Boy 2 is quite the selfie pro. So here are a few pointers to get the perfect one;
1. Steal a phone.
2. Try the easiest combination of numbers ever like 1234 to crack the password and you’re in. (If the phone’s owner is on the clever side then try it backwards.)
3. The most important thing to take into account is that your fringe is perfectly aligned. This will give body to your photos, ignore the centre box on the screen. Follow your fringe. Always.
4. Create an air of mystery. No need to properly open your eyes or change your facial expression.
5. If you do move away from the safety of your fringe, then don’t forget to focus on your nose, it adds a certain “je ne sais quoi” aspect to your shots.
6. Repeat and repeat at least a zillion times, until you find the perfect one which is no mean feat!
There is a simple reason why the love you have for your children is unconditional; If a friend, relation, acquaintance or complete and utter stranger did half the things your child does (and gets away with), you would either unfriend (is that even a real word?), report or bust out some serious kung-fu moves on them.
A few examples;
When riding on your shoulders, gleefully announcing “ I’m not going to fall because I’m holding on to your chins…”
Projectile vomiting in your mouth, pooing in your shoes and weeing in your eye.
Trashing your whole entire house, leaving a trail of unidentifiable substances and breaking the door handle with a hearty laugh and then refusing to tidy up, accept responsibility or pass you the gin.
Delving into your top and only being satisfied when both boobs are properly out, with nothing to do and nowhere to go and then walking away pointing and chanting “Boobs, Boobs, Boobs !”.
Rolling around on the floor screaming that the noodles should have been on the left of the plate, not the right and demanding something else.
Waking you up at 2.36am with an urgent order of water, warm milk, cold milk, water again and a ham sandwich cut into squares NOT circles.
Proclaiming loudly that you are not in fact their mum, but their horrible wicked stepmother who gives them poisonous apples for breakfast.
Snuggling up to you on the sofa and wiping their snot away on your face.
Suggesting that instead of going away for one night, you go away forever and ask a doctor for a new boy.
Asking you why you`re still wearing pyjamas, when you thought you looked quite hip in your new starry jumpsuit.
Last week at a party ( for the under fives), my “friend” did a silent but incredibly violent trump. Cue, parents flocking from the darkest corners of bunting clad trees to check their offspring´s bottoms, nappies, pockets,. “Strewth!” exclaimed one dad ( or words to that effect) “That was nuclear!” coughed another. My”friend” , feeling quite proud of her skills decided to keep mum (literally).
This led me my friend to conjure up a list of the top five situations where it’s morally acceptable to blame it on the kids.
1. Nails; When you are incapable of painting your nails without it resembling an effort from a chimpanzee using its bottom to hold the brush.
The boys did it? How cute!
2. When your house resembles this multiplied by 7;
Easier to say that the kids were nutters and you literally haven’t had a moment to breathe, let alone wash up. Nobody needs to know that the boys were brilliant and you spent the afternoon watching Bananaman, whilst sipping cooking wine from a mug.
3.Cakes; When you have to take a cake somewhere and this happens.
In this case, you don’t need to use your faithful scapegoats as it will just be automatically presumed that your recently out of the womb child made it.
4. The state of you ;
When the children are small, it’s socially acceptable to go out covered in unidentifiable substances and look like you have just landed from another planet without a parachute. It’s also ok to have no concept of what you are wearing. The important thing is that you’re dressed and out . Well done you! Don’t have a raincoat or umbrella? No problem, a bin bag will do.
Although easier to point the finger at the boys for lack of time etc… It gets a bit dubious when they look like they have just stepped out of a catalogue and are constantly asking why you’re wearing dressing up clothes.
** There is a small possibility that I was on my own in above photo, and the boys were in fact fast asleep in another part of the country…
5. When you cut your child’s fringe;
To avoid being reported to the National Society for the prevention of Hair Crimes. Much easier to say that they mistook their hair for a piece of paper.
* For some reason unbeknown to me and the rest of the human race, Boy 1 thinks this is the best fringe ever. (I think having my fringe as a point of reference has helped…)
It would seem that the following concepts are completely alien to Boy 1 and Boy 2;
1.NOW; Used to depict a sense of urgency, i.e; “We have to leave NOW, we’re already super late” or “Stop playing NOW and help tidy up.”
On their planet, NOW is interpreted as a time at least 47 minutes later, sometimes even 47 hours or days. There`s no need to rush, ever.
2.PERSONAL SPACE; Used to describe a healthy distance between two people, especially when a cup of coffee is needed or you are on the loo, doing what you do.
On their planet this means it’s the perfect occasion to clamber, kiss, style hair using toothpaste, demand a story, ask to see what’s in the loo and why…
3.BOY 2 HAS WON; Used to explain to Boy 1 that Boy 2 has scored the most goals, got the most cards, trumped the loudest or run the fastest.
On BOY 1`s planet (this is where there’s a bit of friction between planets), the fact that he landed on planet Earth, 19 months and 27 days before BOY 2, means that he is ALWAYS the winner. Always. Even if he isn’t playing.
4. “AIM IN THE LOO!” means “Please try not to wee on the seat, next to the seat, on the floor, all over the bath, in the sink and on the ceiling.”
On their planet this means “Please, please, please be angels and wee on the seat, next to the seat, on the floor, all over the bath, in the sink and on the ceiling.
5.HANG ON A SECOND, I’M TALKING ; Used to describe a situation where you can’t (lo and behold) give your full attention right away because you are (double lo and behold) engaged in a conversation with somebody else. (If you’re incredibly lucky, that somebody else may be over the age of 5. Imagine!)
On their planet this means ” I can’t talk to you until you whip my leggings and pants down in public, because I love it when everybody gets a glimpse of what lies beneath”
6.IT’S EXACTLY THE SAME!; Used to demonstrate that there is absolutely NO difference between the toy/biscuit/lump of mud they each have in their hands.
On their planet they hear “His is much better than yours, please pummel each other to the ground until you are satisfied with the one you have”
7.“SHHHHH, IT’S A SECRET/SURPRISE”; Generally used to mean keep it to yourself. I.e; don’t tell everybody.
On their planet this means “Tell everybody and make doubly sure you don’t leave anybody out.”
8. NOT NOW; Used to answer questions such as “Please can I eat these 6 jumbo sized chocolate bars I stole from the fridge?” or “Please can we belly flop fully dressed into the paddling pool?”
On their planet it means “Yes of course, there would be no better time than right this very moment.”