Wednesday, July 24, 2013

A mummy report

Women by nature tend to be chatty. We like to talk.....about anything. There is something therapeutic about getting together with someone you love and trust and just having a good 'ol chat.

We want to chat when we have something wonderful we want to share. When we want to have a whinge. When we are bored. Or simply because we haven't spoken to anyone in the last fifteen minutes so we MUST be due for a conversation with SOMEONE!

One topic we seem to be constantly talking about it our precious offspring. We talk constantly about their development, their progress, their behaviour, their habits, and how they affect our lives.   People without children may think this will not happen to them......but just you wait!

I was thinking the other day about how my sons see me and my life. I was imagining what they would tell their friends if they were discussing me the way us Mummy's discuss our children.

I imagine them saying;

"My Mum is 349 months now and is coming along really well. She certainly has her days where she just pushes ALL my buttons, but then she tucks me in and kisses me goodnight and I can't help but forget all the times I was annoyed at her through the day.

She is currently going through a phase of just DESTROYING the kitchen. Everyday come afternoon, she goes through the cupboards getting out all the pots and pans and utensils and makes such a big mess. I can't understand it - we have perfectly good toys that I CONSTANTLY invite her to play with me but she just insists she will play with the toys later and would rather play with kitchen utensils and continues on making her mess. You pick your battles though so I leave her be, just as long as she doesn't expect me to clean up after her.

Thankfully we are now out of the "potty talk" phase! For a while there it was getting ridiculous. Constantly asking whether I was doing #1 or #2, how I was going in there, and even if she could come in! I couldn't even get a moments peace in the toilet. There were even times she would bring me a book to read to me WHILE I was doing my business. I love her, but I just need my space sometimes you know?

I was a little concerned about her temper tantrums recently. I have spoken to my brother about it and he agrees that between 3-7pm just seems to be her cranky time. We have tried distracting her by asking lots of questions, telling her we are hungry so she will have something to do, and arguing with each other to keep her occupied but she still seems to be difficult during these hours. Ah what's a child to do!

Oh her sleeping patterns have improved recently thankfully! She still seems to wake up a bit cranky but we just pre-empt this and solve it by waking her up before the sun while she is still a little tired to gently ease her into the day. We find the best method has been to come in at the crack of dawn and climb into her bed and cuddle for a while. So she doesn't try and fall back asleep, I find myself making up all kinds of small talk ranging from what I dreamt, to what toys I want to play with that day, to what I have named all my toes. If she is really kicking up a fight, I just pretend I'm stretching and give her a little kick in the ribs. I don't LIKE having to do it, but its for her own good you know?

But really, overall she is progressing really well and we all know that all Mummy's develop at their own pace. She still has plenty of time. I like to think that I have contributed a lot to how well she is doing. I don't even have any formal qualifications for being a child. It's all come naturally :)"

Sunday, July 14, 2013


The school holidays have come to an end. I am both thrilled and saddened at the same time. These past weeks have been a lot of fun, combined with plenty of bickering and 'dobbing'.

These holidays I cracked a pretty heavy duty riddle though. For almost 8 years I have tried to figure out how these little people we allow into our lives have so much power over us as grown adults.

Surely by looking at us, you would think parents would always be the superior beings. Our size and strength alone means we 'should' be able to rule the world of children with ease.

Secondly, our fully developed brains should indicate intelligence so superior that we have no hope of being mentally broken.

Finally, we have a host of 'super powers' that come into effect the minute that baby is put into your arms.

There is the power of disguise. We can disguise unwanted vegetables, meats, and any other foods so well our targets have no idea they are consuming anything nutritious. We can disguise chores as a game, and a boring errand as something adventurous.

There is the power of super tuned hearing. No matter how big the crowd, or how quiet the call, we can pick the voice/cry of our own little person. Even if 1000 children were calling "Mum!!", we are able to identify the single voice calling us.

And of course the ever necessary eyes in the back of our heads. No need to use the rear view mirror, we know who is causing trouble in the back seat. We know when faces are being pulled behind our backs, and who is pinching who before anyone places any blame.

Female adult species are bestowed an extra gift of additional (yet invisible) hands and an all-knowing mind. They know where everyone and everything is at ALL times and use their additional hands to cook dinner, whilst feeding a child, talking on the phone, AND doing the banking online.

We are well equipped to conquer the little beings in our home. Yet time and time again they come out on top. Logic had left me lost as to how they do it. What is their hidden power? Their kryptonite to our superpowers?

I have found the answer these holidays. All children posses a superpower that leaves us weak and bordering on helpless.

It is the power of.....endless energy.

This superpower weakens all adult defences. It begins with sleep being unnecessary, happily exchanged for midnight games and DVD watching.  Then comes rising before the sun, and the need for constant movement. It is able to transform a well planned day into wild mess. Order into chaos. It turns an organised mind into a chunk of cheese.

Thankfully these powers weaken with time and begin to taper after several years. Strangely enough, at around the 13 year mark, the opposite seems to come into effect and what was once a wild ball of endless energy turns into what can only be described as a sloth. I never thought I would say this but part if me is looking forward to the teenage years.

Friday, July 5, 2013

Best things

As a family of limited income, I am fond of the saying;

"The best things in life are free."

You generally hear this term in reference to things like family, friends, lazy days at home in your pj's, weekly lunchtime trips to the park with your children, etc.

But not a single one of these things is actually 'free'. All of them come at a cost of some sort. I love spending time with my little family. My world wouldn't be half as joyous without them. I don't have to open my wallet every time I want to spend time with them (lucky, as my wallet is normally empty), but having my family has come at a cost. A significant cost.

Having children is a HUGE expense. Perhaps one of the biggest expenses you can commit to. It also requires you to give your time, your sleep, and oft times your sanity. It is far from free.

Friends also come at a cost. To have friends, you actually need to be a friend and that requires your time. When needed it requires sacrifice to help. It requires you to give your ears to listen and your shoulder to cry on.

Having the freedom to spend lazy days at home, or impromptu trips to the park are popular in our house. We don't pay to do them, but for me to be able to do them with my children, we give up a second income. If we were so desperate to have more to spend as we wish, we could work longer hours, or get another job, but we made a decision that we wanted to have time for our family, particularly for me as a Mother. It was important to both of us that I could be home to raise our children if there was a way for us to make that work. But of course that decision has come at a cost.

These are of course bigger examples, but even though the best things in my life may 'technically' be free, they do indeed come at a cost. Those costs I would pay time and time again without as much as batting an eyelid, as they are the best investments I have made. They make me happy. The kind of contented happy that makes you feel so blessed every day no matter what life throws at you.

The best things in life aren't free at all, there just isn't a monetary price that can be put on them. They aren't free, they are priceless.