Because what the internet needs is more wittering about rubbish parenting

Friday, 24 December 2010

Christmas Time...Mistletoe and Lack of Wine.

It's Christmas Eve! Woo and that.

The season of goodwill is upon us. No-one seems to have told The New'un this though. It's still making me feel a bit unpleasant. Although June is a lovely time to have a baby, and it's pretty much on purpose that I'm doing it again, it's got to be said that being in early pregnancy at Christmas is kind of rubbish. (Technically, I am in my second trimester, so not actually in early pregnancy anymore, and I'm doing loads better than I was, but I'm still having days of feeling terrible, so humour me). While everyone around you is indulging in copious amounts of Christmas spirit, you sit with your government-approved glass of water (to be perfectly honest, I'm not a one for following the 100% abstinence advice, but even so, getting blethered whilst with child is not something you should do. Your colleagues hop blithely from office to shops to bar, while you are in bed by 8.30. I'm not even a massive drinker, or that sociable, but there's something about Christmas that makes enforced sobriety and early nights a tad depressing.

Still, hopefully this time should be better than two years ago, when I was carrying The Toddler, and I felt so sick I could only manage one helping of Christmas dinner. Disgraceful behaviour.

In other news, The Toddler is slightly aware of Christmas this year. Every morning she stands in the living room shouting "Tree!" until I turn the fairy lights on. She also hosted her first Christmas party yesterday. Yes, for some reason I decided to invite 7 small children and their parents to come and hang out in my not-very-big living room. I had several people ask me if I was mad. That is a silly question that surely everyone know the answer to. It was actually very fun. I made too much food, and The Toddler ate most of it. Then threw most of it back up later that night. That's one good thing about feeling queasy, it means that Husband has to deal with the incidents like this.

Anyway, it's Waybuloo-o'clock, and I'd better go.

A very merry Christmas to you all, with love from Bad Mammy, Husband, The Toddler and The New'un.

Saturday, 18 December 2010

Be Careful What You Wish For...

I don't know if I've ever talked much about The Toddler's early days on here. She was not an easy baby. While my friends had lovely little things who stared at the ceiling and gurgled contentedly, I had a screaming, writhing, red-faced bundle of horridness. She suffered from colic and silent reflux, which was worst in the evenings, so from the hours of 5-9pm, there was nothing for it but to pace up and down the house with her and listen to how unhappy she was with her life.

She did, however, sleep from at least 11pm-6am every night from when she was about 5 weeks old. This was a complete shock to me, as I was expecting some kind of karmic retribution from my own babyhood (I didn't sleep until I was 2. At all, by the sounds of it). But while my friends struggled by on 2 hours sleep per night, I often said that I would gladly swap one of my unbroken nights, for one day when my baby didn't seem utterly miserable.

Well, I got my wish. She abruptly stopped her miraculous sleeping at the age of 5 months, for no apparent reason, and since then wakes up anywhere between 2 and 790 times per night. But she is much, much happier. And the happiness seems to be proprtionate to how little sleep she has. Take yesterday. The Toddler was GORGEOUS. She was smiley and lovely, ate all her meals with minimal fuss, behaved herself all the way through my work Secret Santa present-giving, and was generally a joy to be around (apart from when she threw her pyjama bottoms down the toilet). The night before, she woke up at least once an hour (and for once, I'm not exaggerating, honest). Last night, she woke up for half the night, then slept for the other half, so I guess I'm in for split-personality Toddler today.

On reflection, I think the deal I would have made in those early days was the right one. It's amazing how quickly you get used to being tired, but it's much harder to get used to the sound of your baby crying in pain and misery. If you'd asked me at two o'clock this morning, I might have said something different, mind.

Wednesday, 15 December 2010

It's Nearly Christmas!

But you knew that, right? Probably because Fairytale of Bloody New York is on the radio every 17 minutes.

Anyway, here is what has been going on for the last couple of weeks...

Snow - you might have noticed that it got a bit cold and snowy. It was ever so pretty and lovely at first. Then it got quite tiresome. The Toddler was not quite sure of the snow at first, she liked to watch it fall, but when we actually took her out in it, she looked at it, fell on her bum, then cried. But after a go on a sledge (just around the streets, not down a hill, even I'm not that bad), she came around. She quite liked playing with her dumper truck and spade in it too, and was most unimpressed when I took her inside after 10 minutes, because I'd lost her gloves and was having terrible visions of frostbite and all her fingers suddenly falling off. At least it's gone now. Mostly. There's still a big pile in the garden from when it fell off the roof. That might be gone by tomorrow. Just in time for us to get some more. Woo.

Teeth - The Toddler's back teeth are coming through properly now. As I've mentioned before, each of her teeth seem to take about a million years to get out, and cos the back ones are so big, they're taking even longer. Cue grumpiness, nappies of evil, and looooong nights.

Sick - I have finally started to feel less sick. Not completely, but it's gone from being all-day sickness to first-thing-in-the-morning-and-a-good-chunk-of-the-evening sickness. So that's good. Am glad this isn't my first pregnancy though, where I foolishly believed the stupid books when they told me I'd start feeling great once I hit 12 weeks.

Cold - Unfortunately, the sickness has been replaced by a horrible cold. At one point, I thought I even had man-flu. I have done a lot of coughing. I have also, very generously, given it to The Toddler. She keeps coughing up phlegm and gets very confused about it. More long nights. Where she invariably ends up in bed with us. A few people have mentioned "rods" and "backs", but quite frankly, at 3am, I am thinking "Cold. Tired. Want Bed. Don't care how. Don't care who's in it. Tired".

Baby - As far as I can tell, it's fine. I keep thinking I can feel it move, but then it could just be wind. Apparently it's supposed to be easier to tell the second time, but I still can't. We are trying to teach The Toddler about the baby (I need a name for it. Not quite ready to call it The Baby yet, I'm still getting used to The Toddler not being The Baby). It's going moderately well. I ask where the baby is and she points to my belly (usually. Sometimes it's my boob, or my leg) and says "Bee". And then she gives it a kiss. Unfortuately, Husband keeps getting her to do this when I'm not there, so she is getting a tad confused and keeps kissing him on the belly too. Fail.

Christmas Shopping - I hate Christmas shopping. There are too many shops, too many people, everything costs too much, and I buy too much for myself. And STILL NOT FINISHED! I have been about 7 times! Gah.

So yeah, snow, teeth, sick, cold, baby, Chrismas shopping. Pretty much sums it up.

Monday, 6 December 2010


Ok, so that didn't work quite as planned. Blogger has put my posts in the order they were saved in, rather than just put them all now, like I thought it might. Oh well. If anyone is reading this and wants to know where the new ones are, they are Dear Lord, What Have I Done?, Oops, Ugh (Oct) and No Title (Nov)


Well, as most of you already know, I have decided that being an incompetent parent to one child is just not enough, so I am having another one. Yup, I am now 13 weeks pregnant, eek!

This partly explains my infrequent posts on here of late, but fear not, I have been writing some along the way, just for you. It was meant to be a nice detailed diary of early pregnancy, but unfortunately, I've been too tired and pathetic to write much. Just as well really, there's only so much mileage you can get out of "I feeel sick, poor me".

So here they are. (Facebookers, I can't be bothered to copy and paste them all, so you'll actually have to come over to the blog and have a look)


Wednesday, 1 December 2010

Developmental Update. Emphasis On The "Mental".

Haven't done one of these in a while. Anyone want to know how The Toddler is doing? Well, I'm going to tell you anyway.

She is now 17 months and 5 days old. She is a loon.

Here is how she's doing in some important areas:

Walking - v. good. Mostly. She can get some speed up now, and can almost always stay upright. Every now and again, though, she will have a complete standingfail for no apparent reason, and fall on her arse, or she will wander round in a drunken fashion, bumping into things like walls, and the toilet. I'm very pleased that I can now put her down often (she's heavy!), but less pleased that she now screams blue murder when I try and put her in her pushchair.

Talking - shows some promise. She can actually say quite a few things, including: daddle (Daddy), doddle (which I think is dummy), yes, buloo (Waybuloo), Pooh (as in Winnie The. Also refers to Tigger, Piglet, and the whole Hundred Acre Wood gang), poo-poo (which is poo, wee and pump, she hasn't quite distinguished between them yet), shoes, hot (although I'm not entirely sure she knows what this means, and sometimes she just runs around shouting it at the top of her voice), head, teeth and ta (although doesn't use it often, not so good with the manners). She also said "highchair" and "cheese" today. So she CAN say all of these things, but mostly she prefers to say "No". About a million times a day. "Are you tired?" "No". "Do you want to play?" "No". "Do you love Mammy?" "No". "Do you love Daddy?" "No". "Do you want some food?" "Yes". Big surprise.

Other noises - She can do lots of animal noises: sheep, cow, cat, snake, lion, bird, fish (OK, not a noise, but she can do the mouth), duck (although sometimes they say "gok"). All other animals go "boo".

General co-ordination - improving. She is getting quite good at throwing, and better at touching her nose without shoving her finger up it.

Sleeping - rubbish.

Eating - still a champ. Her new talent, though, is spotting every vegetable on her plate and throwing it on the floor.

Activities - The Toddler's favourite things to do: play with belts, and run off with them round her neck, which is alarming and I wish she would stop. Run around shouting "Hot!" (see above). Tear tissues into many, many tiny pieces. Climb up the stairs, especally when I don't want her to. Take all the money out of her Daddy's wallet (I like to do this too). Tries to walk around lifting unfeasibly large objects, such as her pushalong car, and jumbo boxes of nappies. Stare at CBeebies as if it is revealing the answer to life, the universe and everything. Perhaps it is.

Tuesday, 16 November 2010

Still here!

Sorry for the long gaps between posts! I don't have very many interesting things to say, nor the inclination to try and make the boring things sound interesting. I have been poorly and tired and whingey lately, as has The Toddler, so the Bad Mammy household has not exactly been a joyous place to be lately. More a grumpy, messy, occasionally vomit-splattered, place. Lovely.

I forgave The Toddler for her epic tantrum of last week. Especially because a couple of days after that I noticed that she suddenly had two back teeth that I'd never seen before. Oops. Unobservant Mammy.

In other news, I am not happy about this coldness. I'm still in denial that summer is over, and now I'm having to try and find jumpers from the depths of my wardrobe. Does anyone else do this by the way? Spend all summer complaining that you have no summery clothes, buy loads in the nice weather's dying days, and then spend the next few months wondering why nothing you own has sleeves? Where did all the woolly things go?!!! Tis one of the mysteries of the ages.

No Title


Well, still feeling yuck.

The main casualty of this pregnancy is my house (well, actually it's probably Husband's sleep, but who cares about that?). It is very messy. I want to clean it! But I am tired. And have a bad back. And the smell of my kitchen makes me want to hurl. I know it won't smell any better until I clean it, but I can't spend enough time in there to do it. So it remains unclean. As does my bathroom. And my en-suite. And most of my clothes. And my sofa throws.

The Toddler gets cleaned though. Mostly.

Monday, 8 November 2010

Oh The Joys...


On the whole, I am fairly happy about the recent graduation to toddlerhood - The Toddler is funny and engaging, and can generally be trusted to stand on her own two feet while I do things like lock the door behind us, rather than having to do everything one-handed. But, as with many things, this silver lining comes encased with its own, extremely tiresome, cloud. And that's the tantrums. Oh boy.

I'm currently sitting on the sofa in a state of stunned exhaustion, even though I should be seeing to my house, of which not a single inch is clean. This (the exhaustion, not the state of the house) is because of the epic and protracted battle I had trying to put The Toddler to bed, a battle during which I had to redefine my boundaries of what constitutes "reasonable force" several times. I reached the point where you just want to hit the nearest thing with the other nearest thing. Fortunately, I stopped myself, as these things were, respectively, my daughter and her pyjama top, the latter lying on the floor after the 15th abortive attempt to get it over the former's head. I have not felt so frustrated in a long time, and this is coming from someone who's just spent the weekend dealing with the BBC.

Husband was, helpfully, at work this evening, so the splendour of this tantrum was reserved for me and me alone. I'm beginning to think this is why people say that two-parent households are a good thing. It's got nothing to do with emotional stabililty or balance of role models or any of that crap, it's simply so that there's one person to hold the arms, one to put the pyjamas on.

Wednesday, 3 November 2010

Bye Bye Baby!

I'm sorry. I'm totally rubbish. How ever have you coped without my useless wittering dropping into your life every five minutes?

Anyway, before anyone gets alarmed by this title, I have not dumped The Baby on a cargo ship to Sweden or anything like that. I have merely decided that the time has come. The Baby can no longer go by this name. She is now, most resolutely, The Toddler. It's weird. I'm not sure I like it. But it is true. She has finally learned to walk! For the last week or so, she has been unstoppable. It is most fun, watching her stagger around like a tiny drunken zombie, with outstretched arms and a dopey grin. It is slightly less fun when she insists on walking all the way round Ikea (why do they make you walk 4 miles before you can get meatballs?), but I can live with it. I'm a very proud mammy.

I really should get off the computer and tidy my house. It is currently virtually unidentifiable as a place for human habitation, thanks to The Toddler's (weird!) favourite games of scattering books and emptying the bib drawer, and Husband's inability to put anything in a bin. But Friends is on (when isn't it?), and the sofa is sooooo comfy.......

Tuesday, 26 October 2010



OK, I am now heartily sorry about complaining about the lack of symptoms.... they have ARRIVED.


Not enjoying this at all. At least with the first one, I had that whole "wonder of being pregnant for the first time, looking forward to the unknown" kind of thing. This time all I have is feeling sick and having a toddler kick me in the head. And I know exactly what's coming: many more weeks of this. Fun.

Have just been to the supermarket, and picked up anything and everything that might stand a chance of easing the queasiness, including watermelon (win), apple juice, tonic water (pretty good), Tangfastics (questionable), grapes (usually quite reliable) and crisps. A lot of people advise eating dry toast first thing. How the hell are you meant to do that? When I wake up, my mouth feels like a badger crawled in there and died, so I'm pretty sure that dry toast is not going to help matters.

And The Baby doesn't care at all! Here I am, growing a little brother or sister for her, and all she can do is bimble about every morning being insanely jolly, while I retch fruitlessly, and just watch as she takes everything out of her drawers and throws it around.

It's going to be a loooooonnnnng first trimester.....

I'm Sure She Does This On Purpose...

So much for the phew.

The Baby, true to form, has decided not to capitalise on those few steps. She is doing a few now and then, but only very few. Apart from at nursery, where she apparently does it quite a lot, thus deepening my suspicion that they have her mixed up with someone else, and there is another set of parents out there going "But she's normally so good at home! I don't understand why she's so different for them!". So no real progress with the walking yet. It's like she was saying "Alright Mother, there you go, I can walk, will you please shut up and leave me alone now?". Which I won't, by the way. She has also taken to walking around on her knees a lot, which seems to me much more ineficient and downright strange than either just getting up and walking, or staying crawling, but who am I to argue?

We do have a new animal noise though, a very cute "grrrrrr" for lion. And sometimes cow, or bird.

On a seperate note, Husband and I are currently enjoying a blissful evening sans The Baby, who is staying with my wonderful parents. Although as I am on here, and he is on the Xbox, it could be said that we are not exactly seizing this opportunity. We have just been to Asda though. On our own! On a whim! At night! And it was genuinely quite exciting to do that. Oh dear.

Sunday, 17 October 2010


Woo hoo! My child is not lame! She can do walking! Well, kind of. Yesterday, she took her first official steps!!! (Apparently, she had taken a couple before that, in front my mam's friends, but as no-one who was related to her witnessed them, they did not happen, therefore I did not miss them). There were only 3 of them, but still, how terribly, terribly exciting! And what a massive, massive relief. You can tell yourself a million times a day that it doesn't matter, that she will get there in the end, that every baby does things in their own time, but sometimes you can't help getting a teeny bit anxious when yours seems to determined to show you up in front of the parents of child prodigies. There was a part of me wondering if The Baby would end up like Michael McIntyre's 30-year-old crawling around the cocktail party (have you seen that one? Tis very funny. I don't want to like Michael McIntyre, smug-faced git, but I can't help it. I do.).
Anyway, knowing The Baby, I wouldn't have been surprised if those steps yesterday were the only ones she decided to do for the next 3 months (like the very short-lived potty triumph), but she's done it 3 more times today, so I'm feeling pretty hopeful.

So come on Baby, keep up the good work, and then just a few more words and maybe some animal noises, and then I can join the ranks of boasting smugmothers. Can't wait.

Thursday, 14 October 2010


Agh. Just had small panic when I realised I had hit publish instead of save on my previous retrospective new pregnancy post. Thankfully, I don't think I'm so important that someone would be reading my blog in those exact 20 seconds before I managed to delete it.

So anyway, parents and other family members have now been told, and also my yoga teacher, who looked slightly terrified when I said I didn't want to take a break from practising until I was 14 weeks (don't think she's ever taught a pregnant woman before, let alone a very wilful and stubborn one). 1st midwife appointment duly booked.

And yet I still don't believe it! Although I had been feeling a bit rubbish the other week, I now don't feel pregnant at all. I had just about every symptom in the book by 6 weeks when I was carrying The Baby (who definitely needs a change of title now, or things could get confusing), but this time is totally different. I feel tired all the time, but then I've been tired for about 15 months now, so it's kind of hard to discern if I'm any more tired than normal. I guess it's true what they say, every pregnancy is different. Which is not particularly what I want to hear, as I had a pretty nice one last time around and was kind of hoping I'd get that again. I always think that I'm pretty good at coping with things, but I'm beginning to think more and more that actually I've just never been tested....

Oh Dear Lord, What Have I Done?

OK, so here is the first of many posts that I'm writing to be posted retrospectively, because, while it seems that I have managed to put many of my friends off ever having a baby, I have not done it to myself. Yep, that's right, I am having another baby. ANOTHER BABY!! What the crap am I doing that for? Well, mainly so that I don't have to spend my life being the sole entertainment for one child, and also so that if I have a row with the first one, or she decides to move to Australia, I have someone to take me to Tesco when I'm old.

Anyway, I'm about 5 weeks now, and don't really believe it. Apart from the fact that I feel crud and am having to pretend to everyone that I've got some kind of virus. I hate feeling rubbish and sorry for myself and not being able to whinge to all and sundry about it. Bleh.

Important Experiment

Today, we have been conducting a Very Important Experiment. We have decided to try to find an answer to this question: is there ANY filling this child????

Methodology was as follows: give her lots of food, and don't say no when she tries to steal ours.

I think we may have an answer. And that answer, you may be utterly unsurprised to learn, is NO.

Seriously, The Baby must have an extra stomach somewhere where she puts all this stuff. I'm pretty sure she's eaten nearly as much as I have today. She has eaten: a bowl of Rice Crispies, about a quarter of my toasted muffin, 15 grapes, 2 breadsticks, chicken with pesto (there were meant to be some peas involved there too, but she has decided they are no longer something she wants anything to do with), a banana, all the crusts from my sandwich, half a cherry tart, 3 rice cakes, a massive bowl of meatballs, vegetables and rice, and a fromage frais. And then she started picking at stray bits of rice around her highchair tray. Oh, and then another grape.

And now we're just waiting to find out whether she's going to be up all night with a bad tummy, or she's eaten herself into a stupor. The wee hours of the morning will tell.....

Thursday, 7 October 2010

Are You On Drugs Or What?

... was the question asked of me and several of my fellow child-saddled friends, when we were having a discussion about something I had been watching on TV. Not on normal-person TV, on kiddie TV. After thinking about it, I realised that it was a perfectly reasonable question to ask. So, for all of you who are not in the happy position of not having to sit in front of this stuff, here is a quick guide to some of The Baby's favourite programmes...
  1. Handy Manny - Latino handyman who can fix or build anything. ANYTHING. Good thing too, as he is the only tradesman of any description in his whole town. Is the object of a passionate and enduring crush from Kelly, who owns the hardware store. She keeps the store stocked with all manner of random shit, just in case Manny needs it, in the hope that one day he will turn around and realise that she will always have what he needs, and will marry her and have lots of bilingual babies. Too bad for Kelly, as he appears to be in love with his magic tools. Not a euphemism.
  2. Waybuloo - big-faced creatures called Piplings play pika and do yogo with cheebies in a magical land called Waybuloo. I could translate this for you, but it wouldn't really make that much more sense.
  3. In The Night Garden - this is very like the stories my dad used to make up for me when I was little. If he had taken acid and then fallen on his head. The characters include: Iggle Piggle - giant blue thing that looks like David Cameron. Upsy Daisy - mad bint with demented hair, who spends a disproportionate amount of her time snogging Iggle Piggle' Makka Pakka - thing that looks like a very pale poo, that is a bit OCD about cleaning stones. The Pontipines - weird little family with billions of kids that live in a big house and talk funny. Clearly immigrant scum.
  4. Mr Tumble - slightly creepy-looking guy who uses sign language and has an clown alter-ego. Inexplicably charming to most children and adults. Why don't I get it?
  5. Special Agent Oso - children all over the world (supposedly, but they all seem to be American) are abandoned by their parents to do age-inappropriate tasks, and are assisted in their endeavours by the world's stupidest green bear. Every task can be condensed into three special steps, whether it is opening a door, or building a nuclear bomb.
  6. The Imagination Movers - four blokes who dreamed of being rockstars, but are now reduced to jumping up and down in red and blue jumpsuits for the entertainment of small children. Make me want to throw rocks at them.
Next time you're complaining about how crap daytime TV is, remember, it could be worse.

Monday, 4 October 2010

A Hard Day's Night..

.. and a hard day's day too, by the sound of it.

Any hopes I my have had that The Baby's new mattress would be the answer to all my sleep-deprived prayers were roundly squashed by last night's shenanigans. FYI Baby, 4am - not morning. I would really like her to sleep properly now. I've noticed that I don't so much have dark circles under my eyes as a purple face.

So it was with a weary mind, body and soul that I dragged my arse into work, where I spent most of the day mindlessly culling my boss's email instead of anything which required great amounts of energy, leaving Husband alone with the tiny demon. A very tired and grumpy little demon, who possibly has a sore throat, as, in Husband's words, she "sounds like a heron". I'm not sure I've ever heard a heron, to be honest, but she definitely isn't reaching her usual decibel levels. Received a phone call mid-afternoon that began with the words "What do you do when your baby's eaten mud?" and ended with "No, I told you to leave that alone!" and an abrupt hanging-up. See? Demon!

But then I came home from work, to see The Baby crawling towards the door with a (slightly raspy) shriek of joy, and somehow it's all forgiven and forgotten. Granted, the joy only lasted for about 12 seconds, and then she was off playing with my electricity bill again. But it's funny how those little moments somehow see you through.

Friday, 1 October 2010

Stuff, stuff and more stuff!

Like many other ladies born into our materialistic capitalist society, I am fond of a spot of shopping. When I was younger, it was all quite normal. I had staff discount at Topshop, and was not afraid to use it, and dedicated many years to trying to answer the question of whether one can really own too many handbags. Once I had my own home, however, it got a whole lot geekier. Kitchen gadgets! Ingenious storage solutions that you have to put together with allen keys! Soft soft furnishings! I thought that it didn't get much better than a trip to Ikea, perhaps followed by a read of the Lakeland catalogue.

And then I had a baby.

Now, everyone knows that babies require quite a lot of stuff. They need somewhere to sleep, something to be carted around in, stuff to wear, stuff to go on their bums, and all that jazz. But it is truly eye-opening to realise just how much stuff exists in the babysphere. A lot of it is truly brilliant, and I can't imagine how I got by without them, baby or no baby - muslin squares, baby wipes, and little plastic bowls (of which I now have so many scattered around the house with various things in them, that I sometimes can't find anything to serve The Baby her dinner in).
But the rest of it.... oh, my word. Even for a hardened gizmo-and-gadget-shopper like myself, it is quite, quite stunning. Any baby-related situation you can think of, and several million that you never would, you can be certain that someone has invented something to deal with it. Did you know that you can buy a baby-wipe warmer? I don;t have one of those. But here is a random selection of things that I do now own: a mini-food processor, a mini food-masher, a squeezy bulb thing to extract snot from tiny noses, a massive piece of fabric and mesh that fits over a pushchair to protect children from sun and insects, and a stripy material-and-strap portable highchair.

And the choices! The other day, I spent a long and very exciting evening trying to pick a new mattress for The Baby. I would not let Husband rest until he helped me pick between a pocket-sprung one, or one that was covered in bamboo (the wonder-fabric of the 21st century, apparently). I suspect that his actual thoughts on the matter may have been something along the lines of "Please leave me alone", but thankfully, he learned long ago that the quickest way to shut me up is to actually form and offer a valid opinion. In the end, I decided on the bamboo one, reasoning that I didn't have a fully pocket-sprung mattress until I was 28, so The Baby could live without one at 15 months old.

But it's quite ridiculous how excited I got about this. I don't think I've ever been so excited by a purchase ever. Not the Pierre Hardy for Gap platform sandals with 75% off. Not my honeymoon. Not either of my houses. To be fair, part of the excitement stems from the hope that this purchase might be the one that helps The Baby stay asleep for more than 3 hours at a time. But I reckon that most of it stems from the fact that I am a very, very sad individual.

Friday, 24 September 2010

I Am Not A Jar of Sauce...

... I do not need a label.

If you've read, well, anything lately, you may have noticed that writers, journalists and gurus of all types like to come up with funky new names for things. A couple of decades ago we had lots of nifty little acronyms (NIMBYs, YUPs, DINKYs and the like). Nowadays, we seem to have what I like to call the Grazianating of words. This refers to Grazia's (it may well be other magazines too, just this is the one I have a subscription for) constant concatenating (see what I did there, eh?) of words with other words to make new and ridiculous words, which they then use to describe whichever social phenomenon they're observing/inventing this week. You are not just eating less meat, you are a Flexitarian. You do not have a shopping problem, you are Fashorexic. They are not really tight, stretchy trousers, they are treggings. It really does my head in.

Anyway, the Grazia thing was really just a roundabout way of getting to my point (while getting to rant about something that annoys me), which is this: People are absolutely obsessed with putting labels on everything. Including, and perhaps especially, the way you bring up your child.

Now to be honest, this isn't something you tend to come across that much in real life. Most people, as long as you aren't feeding your baby beer and leaving them on the pavement while you pop in to Tesco, don't really concern themselves with what you do with your child, and assume that you're doing whatever works for you. Or at least they have the good sense to know that it's bad manners to harrass you about it. But step into the world of the internets, or the parenting section of a bookshop, and everything changes. Here you will find a vast array of people all champing at the bit to discuss parenting concepts and methods, to label their methods and yours, and to convince you that their way is the best one.

Baby-led, parent-led, Gina Ford, Baby Whisperer, Attachement Parenting, Continuum Concept - which one are you? It all unnerves me a great deal. I never knew you were meant to be able to describe your parenting choices with one snappy little term. I never knew you were meant to have one deeply-held, meticulously-researched and scientifically-supported philosophy that governed the choices you would make. To tell the truth, I'm not sure I've ever made anything that I would describe as a parenting choice. I do whatever it occurs to me to do at the time, with the short-term aim of getting her through the day without her coming to much physical harm or resorting to locking her in a cupboard, and the long-term aim of getting her through her childhood without making her hate me. It never occurred to me that I would need someone to tell me how to raise my daughter. It never occurred to me that someone COULD. If there was a book called "Tips for Bad Mammy and Husband on how to deal with The Baby", then maybe I'd consider it worth a look, but until then, no journalist, parenting guru, or self-proclaimed internet expert knows what we are or should be doing.

I'm not saying that reading about child-rearing has no value. Many people I know have had their lives, or at least their sanity, saved by advice from a book, or from the internet. But I don't see why everyone has to have a parenting "style", or why we have to talk about "parenting" at all. To quote someone very wise and sensible (who I actually met on the internet, but don't hold that against her), "Parent is who you ARE, not what you do". Amen to that.

Thursday, 23 September 2010


If you have seen me today, or have read my facebook status, you will know that I am as proud as Mrs Proud from 1 Proud Street, Proudington. This is because.... The Baby did a wee in her potty! Ta da! I only bought the potty because it was £1 in Asda and is the same colour as my bathroom curtains, but I decided to sit her on it this morning when I was changing her nappy, and she promptly did a wee! It was very exciting. Who'd have thought that you could be so happy about someone urinating into a piece of plastic? So I have told just about everyone I have come into contact with today (thankfully not the man at the garage or the event producer from the BBC) about how proud I am of my big girl.

And then this evening she did a wee on the landing carpet. Ah well. Baby steps.

Wednesday, 22 September 2010

Lost in Translation

The Baby has a new noise. It goes something like this: "Eyuhhh, eyuhhh, eyuhhh". I am not quite clear on its meaning. It may mean any of "I'm tired", "I'm bored", "I'm hungry", "But I WANT to play with that shiny, dangerous thing", "My teeth hurt", or "Mother, I cannot believe that you are so monumentally stupid that you cannot figure out what it is that I am having an issue about right now". Whichever it may be, it is highly unpleasant and I am quite, quite bored of it.

Monday, 20 September 2010

Mistaken Identity?

I am sure - absolutely, positively convinced - that the nursery has got confused. There must be another baby there (well, toddler, they have finally acknowledged that, even though she isn't walking, there is only so much time a 14-month-old can spend playing with sensory baskets, and so have let her go to the far more exciting toddler room) with the same name, and that her key worker has got them mixed up. How do I know this? Sample comments from today: "She's not a bit of bother", "She's so quiet!", and most unnervingly "She slept for an hour and 40 minutes. Yes, she just lies down and goes to sleep, no trouble at all". That ain't my daughter. My daughter is the one who, when she gets home, punches her daddy in the face and steals his glasses, waits until I have just taken her nappy off then makes a break for it, shouts "BAA!" at everything, and whinges until I let her steal food from my plate. Although the food she did steal was cabbage. Granted, it was covered in oyster sauce and she wasn't meant to be eating it, but at least it was green.

Tuesday, 14 September 2010

The Baby's Days May Be Numbered...

Not in a sinister way, I might add. To my knowledge, no-one has ordered a hit on her yet. But you may recall me acknowledging that it was getting more than a little ridiculous to keep referring to her as The Baby, when she is 14 months old, never stays still, is capable of taking her own top off (this is a new one, and quite funny when you are getting her ready for her bath, less so when you are trying to put her pyjamas on afterwards), and eats nearly as much as I do. I decided that she could stay The Baby until she was walking. Which she still isn't, but I suspect it might not be long. We have a Standing Baby! Kind of. She very often doesn't notice she's doing it, having been holding on to something, and then started lifting it up and shaking it about, meaning she is standing unsupported. Woo. Sadly, the minute we notice and start with the praise and adulation, she promptly sits down and refuses to do it anymore. I thought the Perfect Parenting Handbook advocated this kind of loving encouragement? I thought it was supposed to help them develop? Not my contrary little child, obviously. Sometimes, I swear she is looking at me as if to say "Mother, I am not a performing seal. Kindly cease and desist with the gushing. I will do it again in my own sweet time."

Anyway, I must find a new alias for my child. As I am not very original, it is likely to be The Toddler. Although that sounds a bit weird. As if it were the title of a really bad film. Maybe with Vin Diesel in it.

Thursday, 9 September 2010

Fell Off The Wagon

Have been back on the debating section of Three nights in a row. I am a bad, bad person with no willpower. I have not posted yet, but surely it is only a matter of time. It's a slippery slope. Somebody help me. My name is Bad Mammy, and I am addicted to reading and getting annoyed with the opinions of complete strangers.

Monday, 6 September 2010

Food Ramblings. For A Change.

I have spent the last few days doing quite a good impersonation of a neurotic mother. I know, what's going on? And the root of my neuroses is food, of all things. Regular readers will know that (salt obsession aside) eating is one of the few things The Baby truly excels at. So why the wiggyness? It's the stupid Health Visitor's fault.

SHE HAS DROPPED OFF HER LINE! Dun dun duuurrrr.... (that was scary dramatic music, by the way. Did you get that?)

"The Lines", for those of you who are lucky enough to not have to worry your heads about such things, are, apparently, the ONLY way you can tell if your baby is well-nourished or not. When you go and get your baby weighed, the HVs plot their weight on a graph which has lines on it showing how they're meant to grow, and your baby MUST STAY ON THEIR LINE or BAD THINGS WILL HAPPEN and you are a TERRIBLE MOTHER.

The Baby came out a pretty average weight, and by the time she was 4 weeks old, had jumped on to the 75th centile line, and cruised along there quite nicely ever since. 75th centile, by the way, means that in a room of 100 babies, she would try and eat 74 of them. In other words, she is, as is well-documented in this blog, a bit of a chunk. However, on Friday, I was informed that, despite the fact that I may soon be reduced to selling family heirlooms and possibly my organs on eBay just to keep her in organic rice cakes and spaghetti bolognese, she has dropped off the 75th centile, and is now hovering somewhere between there and the 50th.

This is, of course, my fault. The Baby has decided that milk is just not something she really wants to get involved with now she knows that there are chips and blueberries in the world, so apparently her diet now does not have enough fat in it. What the hell???? So now there's another thing for me to worry about? Fruit, veg, fish (as omega3 may or may not be good for babies, but hey, best be on the safe side), iron, vitamins, checking for salt and additives, trying to introduce new flavours, encouraging her to eat wholesome meals with the rest of the family, and now dairy and fat - THERE ARE NOT ENOUGH MEALS IN THE DAY TO COVER ALL THESE BASES!!

After this little discussion, as I was trying to wrestle The Baby back into her clothes, I then heard the Health Visitor advising another mother on weaning her 6-month-old. It seems that in the 8 months since I first shoveled some porridge into The Baby's open and extremely willing mouth, the Guidelines From On High have changed, and now you are meant to skip purees and mush, and instead give them finger foods like bits of banana and let them feed themselves. This is called "baby-led weaning", and parenting circles are full of people who've been harping on for years about how it's the best, most natural and instinctive way to wean a baby, and now get to be even more smug that everyone else is catching up with them (not that all people who do baby-led weaning are smug, I hasten to add before I get myself in trouble with all the very lovely people I know who have done it, just that many of the people I know to be smug in general do baby-led weaning). Meanwhile, the rest of us get to feel like there's another thing that we've somehow done wrong.

So I have spent the weekend trying to sneak milk into The Baby's mouth, and covering everything with cheese sauce, and generally having a little bit of a worry that I have failed and am failing my child in some way. My child, who by the way, is obviously completely healthy, still fairly chunky, can now feed herself with a spoon, and has loved pretty much all food (except the anti-green veg phase we're having right now) since the second that spoon touched her lips. I think the worry may be, as always, slightly unnecessary.

Thursday, 2 September 2010

Baby Jekyll and Little Miss Hyde

OK, so here is what must have happened. I actually gave birth to identical twins. Thye took one away from me at the hospital, and modified my memory. And there is someone living in my house (possibly in the cupboard under the stairs, or the spare bedroom, they're so full of crap I could have Octomom and her brood in there and not know) who pops out every now and then when I'm not looking, and swaps the babies over.

There's no other explanation. One minute (especially the minutes in the morning) I have a child who doesn't want to do ANYTHING. She doesn't want to eat (or at least, not much, and not with any great enthusiasm), she doesn't want to drink, she doesn't want to sleep, she doesn't want to play, she doesn't want to watch TV, she doesn't want to have a story, she doesn't want to cuddle, she doesn't want to be put down, she doesn't want to climb the stairs. All she wants to do is make a really unpleasant noise, and make faces that suggest her heart is breaking, and it's all my fault. Then all of a sudden, when my back is turned, the stranger in my cupboard pops out and replaces her with Nice Baby. I like Nice Baby very much. She plays happily by herself, until I go over and she gives me a big cuddle and a kiss on the nose. She points at things and says things that sound adorably like words. She grabs her toys, gives them fierce hugs and shrieks with laughter. She smiles, sings, dances, and is generally a joy to behold. But then the stranger in the cupboard takes her away again, and brings Grumpy Baby back. This makes me a little bit sad. Grumpy Baby throws diva strops. They are not fun. Although is it wrong that I find it a little bit funny when she puts her face on the floor, as if she is exhausted by the awfulness of her life?

So if you're listening, stranger in the cupboard, please can I have Nice Baby for a little bit longer tomorrow? And can I maybe have her first thing? 5.30am is a lot easier to deal with without the whingeing. Cheers.

Some Randomness...

I don't have the energy to write a proper post. So here is an assortment of random thoughts.

- The Toddler says "No" like a Scottish person.

- Why do baby clothes have pockets on them? What are the designers thinking - "Ooh, we'd best make sure there's somewhere on this 3-6 months sleepsuit for his wallet and keys"??

- I can't remember when I last cleaned my bathroom.

- If everyone in Eastenders works on a market stall or in a shop, why do they all always have enough money to go and drink orange juice in the pub at lunchtime? Orange juice in pubs costs a fortune. And they all work about two seconds from their houses anyway.

- Is it bad if your toddler recognises, and noticeably perks up at the mention of the word "Beebies"?

- I bought The Toddler a special, hypoallergenic, cot-sized pillow today, in the hopes of getting her to sleep better. I had been expressly forbidden to do this, as we have, at a conservative estimate, 847 pillows in the house already. The Toddler is currently sleeping peacefully, with her head nowhere near said pillow. I think I'm in trouble.

That is all.

Saturday, 28 August 2010


Before I begin, I must apologise to Husband, who, as house-trained husbands go, is actually pretty good. I also must apologise to the many men who are surely out there who are true domestic gods.


After some careful and considered research (ie chatting with my friends), it seems that there are some things that most men are just completely incapable of comprehending. Such as:

- if you have to step over something because it's in your way, it probably doesn't go there. Pick it up and put it away.
- the cereal won't go soft and rubbish if you close the packet.
- that tea bags, fish fingers, salt, washing-up liquid, toilet rolls, shower gel, and in fact all things, do not just appear as if by magic. Someone has to go out and buy them. Preferably before the last one has run out.
- if you or the magic replenishment fairy has actually bought a new one before the last one has run out, use the last one before opening the new one.
- if we wanted all our stuff on display at all times, we would have bought shelves, not cupboards and drawers. Close them.
- women have a code. "Dinner's nearly ready" means "come and get the cutlery and tell me how much mash you want". It does NOT mean, "start doing something else at the other side of the house". "Do you know where the such-and-such is?" is not a question which requires a yes or no answer. It is an instruction for you to go and look for it.
- that sinks, baths and showers aren't self-cleaning, just because they have water in them
- that the woman carrying your child does not give a tiny rat's ass if you are tired, or miserable, or uncomfortable.
- that food is cooked when it is hot and not burned, not when the packet tells you it is.
- that saying you were going to do something nice as a surprise, but then changed your mind and didn't, is not quite as good. Just don't say anything.
- that we will never believe that the baby really likes watching you play Grand Theft Auto.
- that it's only nagging because you didn't listen and do it properly the first three hundred times.

And of course, that women are utterly perfect and have no flaws whatsoever.

Friday, 27 August 2010


Got horrid ulcers all over my mouth and throat. Too miserable to blog. Going to sit here in silence (talking makes it hurt more) feeling sorry for myself. Meh.

Monday, 23 August 2010


Hoo. Ray.

The Baby, perhaps sensing my fear that she would still only be saying "yaddle yaddle" when she reached 14, has decided to say her first word. It is "No". Usually in response to a perfectly valid question such as "Are you going to drink your water?" or "Will you get down from there please?", and after a small pause, during which she manages to give you the impression that she is giving your question due consideration, but, in the end, finds it unfavourable. So we get a dainty shake of the head, and a "No". Brilliant. Does she not realise that she's never going to be able to live this down? That this will become the stuff of family legend? That Husband will probably be compelled to mention it in his father-of-the-bride speech? (Not that he's ever going to let her go near a BOY, of course).

Anyway, it's very fun and cute and we're very proud. In other news, she's developing a fondness for putting things in other things. The other day, I was rooting around in my inexplicably big handbag for my phone, and pulled out an Indian takeaway menu, half a tissue, and a decorative twine ball that belongs in a vase on my bedroom windowsill. Pretty sure I did not put them there. She also amused herself for about twenty minutes last week, putting crayons in the thing that you fill the iron up with, then trying to get them out again.

While we're on the subject, does anyone know what that thing's called? Does it have a name? Is it a bottle? It doesn't have a top. A jug? it's too skinny. In our house, we call it the iron thing.

I wonder about strange things.

Friday, 20 August 2010


Too tired to blog. Ugh. Put The Baby's UV sun tent (used for about 30 minutes on holiday) up in the living room for her to play in - Husband keeps crawling into it to nap. Spent a lot of today watching Masterchef and Mickey Mouse Clubhouse. Bleurgh. Will try and write something interesting once The Baby is over the effects of her MMR jab. And possibly tooth number 8. And bronchiolitis. And just, you know, life.

Sunday, 15 August 2010

Saying the Unsayable

Ok. I'm going to say it. I'm going to say the thing that I'm sure most parents must think, but would never dream of saying, at least not so plainly. Here goes.

Sometimes my child does my nut in.

There. I said it. Please don't take her away from me. It's not qualified with "I love her so much but...". She's my daughter, of course I bloody do. I'm not watering it down with ".. but I wouldn't change a single second". That would be a lie. If I could, I would have changed several thousand seconds just today, when we were subjected to a screaming fit of epic and baffling proportions. It's just the truth.

We're not supposed to say things like this. You feel like we're not even supposed to think things like this. It's as if the second you give birth, you are expected to become a paragon of patience, selflessness and calm. Feelings of frustration, exasperation and resentment are not to be spoken of, because you have your beautiful little baby so it's all worth it. Of course it's worth it. But there are times when it's really, really hard to remember that. Times when you feel like your eardrum has been perforated by the crazed bawling of an angry infant. Times when you have fed, changed, stroked, rocked, fed again, taken off a layer of clothing, added a layer of clothing, put down, picked up, fed again (just in case), and even medicated your baby, and still they are not happy. Times when you just want to, or perhaps even find yourself asking "WHAT DO YOU WANT FROM ME???!!!!!".

I think (and I really hope I'm right, otherwise I am a terrible mother and horrible person) that it's normal to feel this way. And that it's OK to feel this way. Parenting is harder work than you could ever have imagined before you do it. The pay is crap, the hours are punishing, the work is smelly, tiring, repetitive, and your client shows her gratitude by weeing on your jeans and smearing jam into your sofa. Yes, it's magical, rewarding, fulfilling, blahdy blarble blah, but because it is, it means you feel guilty about the times when you feel like putting your head in a blender would be preferable to listening to any more screaming.

So I'm not going to feel guilty anymore. I'm going to put my hand up and admit that dealing with a baby screaming for hours for no apparent reason sucks. That having a dead arm from hours of constantly carting around a clinging child is not fun. That having a small person climb across your face and put their knee in your throat at 5.30 in the morning is unpleasant. And that although there are many many incredible things that more than make up for the bad times, anyone who loves every moment of having a child is either a) insane, b) lying, or c) a far, far better person than me.

Sunday, 8 August 2010

Non, Je Ne Regrette Rien

A friend and I were chatting today, and I told him that one of my regrets is that I didn't get out and do more before giving my life over to nappies, early nights and mornings, and When I look back, I seem to have spent a disproportionate amount of my twenties sitting on the sofa eating Pringles and watching America's Next Top Model (I actually have 1 year, 1 month and 1 day of my twenties left to go, but I really don't see anything happening to rectify the situation, apart from the fact that it is more likely to be MasterChef on the TV. ANTM's lost its mojo.). Surely your twenties are for going out, drinking, travelling, having intellectual discussions with fascintating strangers and having your ears blown out by festival PA systems, and I should have done more of it.

But when I really think about it, if I could go back and do these years again, how much more would I actually do? How many nights out would I have not passed on, just because they clashed with The X-Factor? How much of my spare cash would I have saved towards going to Glastonbury or on that mass outing to Prague, instead of spending it on Marks and Spencers ready-meals and cushions? How many times would I have rallied my friends to go to the pub, instead of thinking, "I just can't be bothered to move"?

The truth is, I suspect, not that many. The truth is that I am a lazy and boring person. I actually really love Pringles, sofas, and reality TV talent shows. I love comfy clothes, warm houses, and going to bed early. Which is why being a parent is BRILLIANT! All of a sudden, I don't need an excuse for my unsociable tendencies. People invite me to things, but aren't offended if I don't show up, because I have a baby. If I do go somewhere and want to leave at a pathetically early hour, it's OK, because I have a baby. And when I do go out and do something, I know it's something that matters enough to me to make the effort, and that I'll have a great time.

Now, where are those Pringles?

Wednesday, 4 August 2010

When You Say Nothing At All

I feel terrible for even thinking this, but I'm starting to realise that The Baby is perhaps not the sharpest lemon in the tree. She's not a complete idiot - she can hear the opening of a packet of carrot puffs from a hundred yards, and ferret out a mobile phone from its hiding place under a pile of cushions - but she's not exactly picking me up any medals in that most terrifying of competitions: the Parenting Olympics. It's my own fault, I didn't put in the necessary training: endless sessions of Baby Bounce, Baby Yoga, Baby Sign Language, Baby Ballet, Baby Jazzercise and whatever else it is they have nowadays. As a result (or so it feels), The Baby is currently letting the side down, especially in terms of walking, talking, and feeding herself with cutlery. I know that every baby will do things when they're ready and all that, and that it doesn't mean that she's going to be at any kind of disadvantage in later life (Husband hardly did anything til he was about 12 apparently, and he's not a total simpleton now), but if I hear one more tale of "Lucas carved a chicken and then ate it with chopsticks at 10 months" or "Olivia ran the Great North Run while reciting Juliet's soliloquy on her first birthday!, I think I will pull someone's eyes out. Possibly my own.

I shouldn't worry about it, I know. But I just can't help it. At least we're getting there with some things. To the question "What does a sheep go?", The Baby will now reply with the word "Ba", to much praise and adulation. Then, to the question "What does a cow go?", she will also reply with the word "Ba". Oh well, one step at a time.

And of course, how could I forget? There is one discipline at which The Baby excels. She may use a spoon as a way of transferring yoghurt to her hair, but when it comes to using her hands to fill her face with her own weight in pasta, this child is going for gold.

Wednesday, 28 July 2010

Back! Briefly

Sorry I've been so rubbish lately - I've been at work pretty much constantly since last Thursday... just had to go off and stop The Baby playing with the dustpan and brush and have completely lost my train of thought. She is now watching the video for "She Wolf". Much better.
Anyway, where was I. Oh yes, been at work, so The Baby was unceremoniously dumped on her daddy for the weekend. She was apparently very lovely the whole time. Now she's back in my care, however, normal service has been resumed. This morning was mostly spent arguing about what to do. I wanted her to realise that she was knackered and nap, she wanted to eat rice cakes and play with an empty suitcase. I won, but it took two hours, so did not feel like any kind of victory.

Jet-setting Baby is off again tomorrow, we're flying to Wales to see family again and go to a wedding, which will be nice. This will be her first wedding, I hope she behaves. Knowing her, she will make an idignant sqauwk at the "lawful impediment" bit. I apologise in advance to the future Mr and Mrs Rees for any havoc my child may cause. But it's your own fault for inviting her!

Wednesday, 21 July 2010


All mammies, even rubbish ones like me, dread immunisation time. No-one likes to see their poor baby have needles stuck in them, no-one like seeing that confused "what are you doing to me, this HURTS!" face, no-one likes the traumatised screaming, or the prospect of a sleepless night spent shoving calpol into a boiling hot baby. The Baby has never actually reacted too badly to her jabs, but the last ones were months ago, and who knew what sort of mood they'd put her in now. So, having already missed the appointment 3 weeks in a row, it was with a slight sense of trepidation that I hauled her into the surgery today. But we all know that The Baby loves to confound my expectations. As the super-speedy, stealth ninja nurse jabbed her in the leg with lightning speed, The Baby let out a yelp of surprise and started doing the face. We gave her a cuddle and told her what a brave little soldier she was. And then she stopped crying. Just like that. As we reached the car park, she broke into a huge smile. When we got home, she played on the floor happily, shrieking with joy at everything she encountered. She went to bed with no fuss. WHAT THE HELL WAS IN THAT SYRINGE???!!!!! And can I get some more please?

Tuesday, 20 July 2010

Happy Days!

My friend had a baby girl yesterday! I'm very excited and can't wait to see them all. It's nice to hold newborn babies. You forget how lovely it is to just have a nice cuddle without feeling like your arm is going to drop off from the sheer bulk of her, or having your glasses stolen. Everyone says when you first have a baby "Enjoy them while they're little, it goes so fast", but you don't have any idea how true that is, until all of a sudden a year's gone by and your child has crawled all the away up the stairs and locked the baby gate on you, which you had no idea she knew how to do. Maybe that's why people have second babies, so they can really appreciate the tiny baby phase. And so that if you fall out with one of them, there's still someone to look after you when you're old.

Friday, 16 July 2010

There is Hope!

I'm so pleased! A friend, who is immeasurably cooler and more glamourous than me, mentioned being in a pilates class with Julia Restoin-Roitfield, and I KNEW WHO THAT WAS! (Cool fashion person, google her if you care). Proof! Actual proof that my brain can still function beyond the sphere of babydom, recognise names that aren't Gina Ford or Penelope Leach, and show a vague interest in subjects other than nappies, child nutrition, and hyperemesis gravidarum. This is a good thing. New mothers can be terribly boring, and as I hardly deserve that title anymore, my child being one year old, I should make much more of an effort to be less boring.

To aid this effort, I have decided to spend less time on Last night I took the radical step of leaving the board that I seem to spend most time staring at, and deleting all traces of it from my internet browser. I realise that a more radical and more sensible step would be to do leave the whole site, but I'm not quite ready for that. But I feel virtuous and liberated. Tonight, instead of faffing around reading other people's arguments, I managed to complete a task I've been about a quarter of the way through for quite a while. Well, four years actually. But who's counting?

Tuesday, 13 July 2010

A Conversation.

Bad Mammy: "How did you get over there? What are you doing?"
The Baby: "Yaddle yaddle"
BM: "What's yaddle yaddle?"
TB: "Yaddle yaddle"
BM: "Really?"
TB: "Yaddle yaddle yaddle. Gah! Gah! GAH!!! Veh veh yaddle yaddle. Loggle oggle. Loggle oggle yaddle yaddle yaddle. Eh? Euh. Euh. Plrrfppph. Yaddle yaddle veeeeeh. Grrrrrrr"
BM: "Oh right".

Monday, 12 July 2010


Ok, so The Baby is one. One whole year old (and a few weeks now). She nearly has 5 teeth, she has learnt how to climb up the stairs, she has learnt that shaking her head means no (and employs this new-found skill whenever she is confronted by a vegetable), and is all of a sudden starting to look very big. I realise it is getting faintly ridiculous to keep calling her The Baby. But I can't bring myself to call her anything else. I absolutely refuse to admit she is a toddler until she does some actual toddling. If she takes as long to walk as she does to crawl, Ive got a good while yet. Phew.

Thursday, 8 July 2010

Home Sweet Home

Hey ho!

We are back from Ibiza, safe and sound, or as sound as we have ever been, at any rate.

Ibiza = nice. Go there. It's good. If you want more info than that, stop faffing around on my blog and go and find a travel website.

The first thing I realised about travelling with a one-year-old is that you have to redefine your idea of a "holiday" somewhat. Holidays used to be a nice break, a lot of sunbathing, reading, eating, drinking, that kind of thing. This holiday was a lot more work than that. Apparently, it's not really a wise idea to get pissed and and lie around in the midday sun when you have a small child. And you have to entertain them too. As luggage space only permitted us to take about 7 toys with us, all of which she got bored with in about 20 minutes, we constantly had to play games of "Hit Mammy and Daddy in the chest", "Try and pull things out of the suitcase", and "Play with the bidet". It's been a long time since we had such concentrated, uninterrupted family time. Man, it's hard work! But it was also very lovely, and The Baby enjoyed it too and rewarded us by being lovely and smiley (despite growing some new teeth) for most of the week.

Being me, I did manage to get in a few good examples of Bad Mammy-ness such as...
- leaving her to troll around on the shiny tiled floor all the time. She only banged her head twice though.
- getting her a teensy bit sunburnt, despite the lashings and lashings of factor 50. She sustained an interesting burnt eyebrow, somehow.
- feeding her all the time, whenever I didn't know what else to do. That child has eaten her own weight in organic rice cakes.
- letting her eat loads and loads and loads and loads and loads of bad stuff. I knew I would have to drop my salt and additive paranoia for the week, and boy did I drop it. What she has eaten: chips, fish fingers, ham sandwiches, more chips, about half a mini magnum, more chips, about 10 loaves of bread, mint ice cream, hazlenut ice cream, ham and cheese toastie, mini cheddars, bits of croissant, more chips, some pizza that she didn't really like, caramel ice cream and much more. What she has not eaten: anything of any nutritional value whatsoever.
- making no effort whatsoever to put her to bed at a reasonable hour, instead taking her to see a parrot show at 10pm.
- not realising for a few seconds that the thing she was playing with while we waited for our dinner was in fact a steak knife.

But who cares, eh? We had a lovely time, and that's all that matters. Now to try and get her used to being home again. Where Mammy doesn't play with her all day and take her to splash around in the pool, but faffs around on the laptop and only gives snacks at pre-appointed times. Poor Baby.

Tuesday, 29 June 2010

We're All Going On A Summer Holiday!

Yay! I'm going on holiday. Bags are packed to breaking point, but I'm sure I've still have forgetten something. Dreading trying to keep The Baby still until the captain switches off the seatbelt sign. Trying to remember any Spanish words - drawing a blank. Except for "cerveza". Oh well, that's always useful.

Friday, 25 June 2010

Where Did It Go????????

Bloody Hell. The Baby is 1 tomorrow. As in ONE WHOLE YEAR OLD! It's really true, this time last year I was sitting on the sofa, playing Joust on the xbox (you know, that really old game with the stupid little birds and the eggs and you have to pop the birds with your stick), and timing my contractions with a thing on the internet (Husband didn't have his android phone then, there's an app for that you know), waiting for them to get to that magic "1-minute long, 5 minutes apart" stage. (Little did I know that when I got to that stage, they'd just tell me to go and have a bath.)

Anyway, I digress. Oh yes, where did the time go? This year (especially this year as in 2010) has flown by, which is a complete mystery to me, as the individual minutes and hours often seem to drag. I'm thinking particularly of those minutes when she is screaming with righteous anger because her dinner isn't cooling down quick enough, or the hours before Husband is due in from work when I really need the loo but she will not let me put her down. But here we are. A year ago I was a pregnant woman, and today I am a mammy to a grumpy, wilful, stubborn, charming, curious, energetic, noisy, bewildering, mischeivous, crawling, squalking, almost-walking, chunky, practically hairless, beautiful little girl. And I couldn't be happier.

Thank you - to Husband, who, for all that I despair of him on here, is a truly fabulous husband and father. To my amazing family, who have kept me supplied with food, cleaned my house, taken The Baby away when I have been about to throw her out of the window, always had fantastic advice, and generally helped me along the way. To my lovely friends, old and new, and a special shout out to my mammy friends - between us we've seen and done it all. To all of you for reading, and telling me how much you've enjoyed it - that means a lot to me, and I hope I can keep being worth reading.
And thank you to my baby girl, for having a smile that makes me forget exactly how horrific your screams can be, for outgrowing your silent reflux, and for learning how to nap. And for being cool.

Right, I'm done now. Thank God I'll never get an Oscar, eh? They'd be vomiting in the aisles.

Tuesday, 22 June 2010


It's National Breastfeeding Awareness Week, so even though I have done this topic before, I'm going to do it again. And it's my blog so I can do what I like and you can't stop me so there.

So anyway, here are 10 reasons why breastfeeding is cool.

1. It's free. Free is good. Free means you have more money to spend on shoes and cake and gorgeous unnecessary baby clothes.
2. You don't have to faff around with the kettle at 3 in the morning.
3. You have to carry a lot less stuff around with you.
4. If you have a grumpy, unaffectionate baby like mine, you at least get a cuddle every now and again.
5. Related to faffing around, see above, but you don't have to be subjected to hunger-crazed screaming while you wait for the bottle to get to the right temperature.
6. You get to make your other half run around after you bringing you food and stuff.
7. Also, the fact that it has to be you that gets up for night feeds means you score an awful lot of points over the other half, to be used at your leisure and to your advantage.
8. You don't have to give extra water (which my baby flatly refused to take) when it's hot.
9. It's free. Did I mention that?
10. There are apparently loads of health benefits. Now to be honest, I'm slightly sceptical about the extent of these benefits, but there's a very good chance that they're there!

And some disclaimers.

1. It can be a bit of a pain in the tits. Quite literally. But it gets better.
2. It doesn't have to be all or nothing. Combined feeding can be an option, and was a lifesaver for me.
3. Some people can't do it full stop. And their babies turn out just fine.
4. I think you have to want to do it. If you feel like you're being guilted into it, you won't enjoy it and you'll find it easy to give up. Some people have an innate stubbornness that gets them through, but it's much easier to keep going through the problems if you feel genuinely happy about doing it.

And I think that's the main thing I want to say about breastfeeding. Be happy about it. It's a good thing. It's a nice, natural (and did I mention free?) thing. But it's not the be-all and end-all. Do it because you feel good about it, not because you feel like you "should". You're not a terrible mother if you give your baby a bottle. Of formula, that is. I'd call your skills into question if it was vodka.

Sunday, 20 June 2010

Been Doing Stuff..

...for once, instead of just sitting on my bum in the house, wondering why The Baby is bored and grumpy. This has been a busy weekend! Went to watch the rubbish, rubbish football on Friday night. Then hit Mothercare sale on Saturday morning while The Baby was still at her grandma's. Where a sales assistant approached me to ask if I wanted to join their baby club, I just had to give them my details and due date. Fail. I am mean for enjoying her embarrassment when I informed her that I had in fact had my baby, a year ago. To be fair to her, I was bimbling around Mothercare, looking at pretty much everything, in the kind of aimless way that most parents are just not at leisure to do. And I had consumed a huge Chinese takeaway and a couple of rum and cokes the night before. And I was wearing horizontal stripes.

This weekend, we've also been to a birthday party (where The Baby embarrassed me by doing really stinky pumps every 15 seconds), had a night of very little sleep, and thrown a surprise baby shower for a friend. Which would have worked a lot better if she hadn't been early, and seen me walking towards her mum's house with a bunch of balloons. Oh well. The Baby then proceeded to be clingy and whingey for a while, only cheering up when I gave her a bit of cake, which she promptly smeared on the carpet. I think my friend may be questioning her decision to have one of these creatures...

Today was also Husband's first Fathers'Day, which he got to celebrate by making an omlette for a grumpy, tired child, then having said child whisked away to the baby shower. He is now at work. Oh well, at least he got the gift of a few hours xbox time.

Oh, look at that. It's actually getting late. Damn these light nights, getting me all confused. Night!

Saturday, 19 June 2010

Wednesday, 16 June 2010

This Is A Gift, It Comes With A Price...

The Gift - The Baby has slept through for the last three nights. (And it was a case of her staying asleep, rather than me just not hearing her. Husband has confirmed. Unless neither of us now hear her. Interesting thought.) The Price - she has decided that 6.30am is an acceptable wake-up time, and screams through her breakfast. Regular readers and anyone who has ever seen my child eat will know that it is most irregular for her to greet food with anything other than joy. So it is unnerving, as well as extremely tiresome. I don't know what to wish for tonight, a good night's sleep or a peaceful morning. Knowing my luck I will get neither.

Perhaps she is bored of porridge. It occurs to me that I have given her porridge every day for the last 5 months, therefore this may be a reasonable assumption to make. But at 6.30 in the morning I'm pretty much running on auto-pilot: porridgemilkstirmicrowavejamfetchbabyfeedbabycleanporridgeoffbabycleanporridgeoffkitchenfloorkettleonmaketeadrinktea aah, that's better. This cannot go on. Part of my brain knows that I have a young child therefore have kissed a fond farewell to sleeping in until a civilised hour, but it forgets to tell the part that has to get out of bed and function. Bad, Bad Mammy. Must try harder.

Sunday, 13 June 2010

Grump Grump Grump Grump Grump

Bleurgh. I'm in a right grump. It's just come over me all of a sudden, possibly because I've had such a nice weekend and now it's over. Boo. The things that I am currently annoyed about include, but are not limited to:
  • The kitchen floor. Even though we have swept, hoovered and wiped it at least 5 times since Husband dropped a glass on it the other day, it is still covered in tiny, tiny shards of glass, which refuse to detatch themselves, until they come into contact with human skin.
  • That even though I bought expensive, organic Northumberland beef to make The Baby a stew with, it still has the texture of a shoe, and tastes of nothing.
  • Those stupid, stupid, stupid horns at the World Cup.
  • The fact that I am even blogging about this. In fact, I have just deleted a whole raft of whingeing, becuase no-one wants to read it. It's stupid and pointless and irritating, and makes no-one's life any better, so I will stop.
See! Who says blogging serves no purpose? I started in a bad mood, and now I am determined not to be in one. Or at least not to bore anyone else with it. I am going to be a positive, joyful person from now on. For at least ten minutes, anyway. Not sure if this attitude will last if I'm faced with The Baby having a screaming fit at 2.40am again. Although if that does happen, hopefully it won't take me 20 minutes to figure out that all she wanted was some water this time. Silly silly Mammy.

Friday, 11 June 2010

To Sleep, Perchance To Dream..

Thought I'd better dash off a quick post while The Baby has a nap. She's been asleep a while though, so I bet she wakes up any moment. Yes, after 11 months of being utterly and resolutely diurnal, The Baby has now decided she is going to sleep for anything up to two hours every morning. I'm sure it is part of her campaign to keep me unnerved. The girl is an evil genius.
Not that I'm complaining. It's nice to have the peace and quiet after the trauma of the other night. She decided to scream all night, after I woke her up to put her back in her sleeping bag. Baby sleeping bags (for those who are uninitiated into the world of stuff that parents are invited to spend their money on) are marvellous things. They are like a cross between a normal (tiny) sleeping bag, and a pair of dungarees. They zip all around the bottom and one side, and have poppers over the shoulders to keep them on. In theory, this means that you aren't woken up 12 times a night because your child has kicked their blankets off and is cold (you may be woken up 12 times a night for a myriad of other reasons, but sadly, no-one's managed to invent anything to deal with those yet). Baby Houdini over here managed to somehow get out of hers, no idea how. Then when I tried to put her back in, she screamed. So I took her out again, and she screamed.
Anyway, this was going to turn into a long and boring story about screaming all night, but, as predicted, she's just woken up. I'm blogging here, child! Laters x

Saturday, 5 June 2010

There Is No Spoon

Not if The Baby had her way anyway. I have mentioned before how my very uncouth baby likes to suck her food straight out of the pouches, which is really quite embarrassing, but at least it's tidy. Now, however, she has started to take issue at being spoon-fed at all (she's getting so independent, where did my little helpless child go?!). Today she decided she was going to eat with her hands. Not a problem at lunchtime - chicken and bread. Tea, however, was less dandy, as it was mashed-up pork casserole. But bless her, she looked so happy, shoving handfuls of meat into her face (and up her nose, and in her eye). On the plus side, this means that I can have a cup of tea, or possibly even food of my own, while she eats. On the minus side, it means that my baby, and my kitchen, end up looking like they have been caught in a meat blizzard.

Wednesday, 2 June 2010

Why I Am Really Bad Mammy!

Can't believe I forgot this one the other day.

Lately, I have quite often woken up in the morning, feeling refreshed and rested, turned to Husband and said, "Oh, she slept quite well, didn't she?"



As it turns out, she is not sleeping well. I am. Husband is not. Husband is getting up with her two or three times a night, while I slumber on, blisfully unaware. This feels all wrong and bad. Surely, as a mother, I should be attuned to my baby's every need, be able to discern the tiniest whimper from two miles away, while at a rock gig, in a coma? I am a disgraceful mother, and a disgraceful wife.

I think she made me pay for it last night, though. Husband is on nights, so when she decided to wake up hourly from 2am, there was no-one else to deal with her. However, I can't help but wonder how long she now whinges for before I eventually rouse myself. And thanks to last night, I'm now really tired, so she'll probably have to burn the house down or something to get my attention.

Sunday, 30 May 2010

Why I Am Still Bad Mammy

Over the last couple of months, I have started to believe that I am now less Bad than I used to be. On closer examination, I have come to the conclusion that that's not true, I simply have stopped worrying about it. Also, now The Baby is almost not a baby anymore, there is slightly less to worry about. However, here are some reasons why I still deserve the title of Bad Mammy:
  • I still don't take her to do exciting and stimulating activities. That's what I pay nursery fees for, surely?
  • Even though she is crawling around the floor all the time, and picking up and trying to eat anything from the floor that looks like it might be food (even though it could really be a piece of paper, money or an ant), I'm still shockingly bad at keeping the floors clean.
  • I have moved her off formula, and stopped sterilising, before the Government-prescribed age of 1 year (because, at the stroke of midnight on their first birthday, ALL babies' stomachs can suddenly cope with this).
  • The baby-proofing equipment is STILL in the cupboard under the stairs.
  • I have not even thought about trying to reduce her dummy usage.
  • I forget to put socks on her all the time.
  • If she is having a tantrum, and I can't think of what else to do, I give her a biscuit. (Homemade biscuits though, surely that gets me some Good Mammy points?)
  • I tell her she's naughty. Which is apparently really bad for their self-esteem, and just encourages them to be naughty, because they are being told that's what they are. Just what I need, a toddler with self-esteem issues.
  • I let her steal my food, even when she's just had her own meal and I know she's not hungry. Wonder why she's so bloody huge?
  • I enjoy being at work and away from her FAR too much.
But that's not too bad, right? Thankfully, by now lots of my mammy friends have relaxed now their babies aren't fragile, precious little newborns anymore, and I've made some almost equally Bad Mammy friends, so I feel much less alone in my rubbishness! But I'm sure the toddler phase is going to throw up plenty of opportunities to do things wrong. Bring it on, I say.

Wednesday, 26 May 2010

Happy Almost Birthday

The Baby is 11 months today! This means that I now have exactly 1 month left of having a baby under 1. That's scary. And it's making me realise that very soon I am going to have to stop calling her The Baby. Not sure I'm at all ready for that. Also, what will I call her? The Toddler? It doesn't quite have the same ring to it. The choice of "The Baby" was deliberate. Obviously she is my baby, so it didn't take the greatest leap of imagination to come up with that, but, to me, she is also THE baby. The only one in the whole world. Obviously, I don't really mean that literally. I don't come over all blind and deaf if there is another child under one in the room. But as much as I love my nephews, and my friends' babies, they don't take over my universe the way she has. And I guess no matter what I call her, or however big she gets, she will Always Be My Baby. And even when she finds out I have a penchant for quoting lyrics from the early works of Mariah Carey, I will always be her mammy. I'm happy about that.

Monday, 24 May 2010

Developmental Milestones pt 2

As The Baby is now the ripe old age of 11 months minus two days old, I thought that now would be as good a time as any to update you on her development. And I couldn't think of anything else to write.

So here are the things that The Baby is currently dabbling in..

  • Crawling. As if she has a rocket up her bum. I may have mentioned this once or twice. That's because I still cannot get over how fast she can go. Like a teeny, mischievous, destructive cheetah.
  • Eating me out of house and home. She's good at eating. Things she does not like - raw tomatoes, asparagus, and.... I'm out.
  • Pulling herself up on the sofa. And the toilet. And the cooker. And the rickety table that quite often has a cup of tea on it. And the back of my legs while I'm standing at the kitchen worktop, so I then can't move.
  • Screeching, shouting and otherwise making a lot of noise. Usually in the middle of Asda, which is clearly the most exciting place in the world.
  • Putting things in places, and taking them out again. Quite cute when it's her toy box, less so when it's my pyjama drawer.
  • Developing strong emotional attachments to inanimate objects. This week it is Bedtime Bear. Bedtime Bear solves all problems. Nearly.
  • Playing with cause and effect. Baby drops the toy, Mammy picks it up. This is good. Baby drops the toy again, and sure enough, Mammy picks it up again. Baby drops the toy again, Mammy decides to teach her that sometimes dropped things stay dropped. Helpful passer-by picks up the toy. Bum. Baby looks smug.
  • Expressing her likes and dislikes. Ooh boy, especially the dislikes. She is currently reserving most of her venom for getting dressed in the morning, and getting undressed at night. To say that she is not a fan would be something of an understatement. This is the one problem that Bedtime Bear cannot help with.
And some things she is refusing to do..
  • Walk on her own, or which I am profoundly grateful. Oh God, imagine how much trouble she's going to get into.
  • Say "Mama". We have "Dada", we have "Ta", we have "yaddle yaddle", "loggle loggle", and what may have been "Colin", but nothing for me. Boo.
  • Feed herself without decorating the kitchen in porridge.
  • Let go of anything that she's not supposed to have - keys, phones, bottles of shampoo. You can try and take them away. See Expressing dislikes, above.
Remember, all babies are different and develop at their own speed. She may be lazy. Or she may just want to embarrass you by making you lose the "my baby is better than your baby" contest.

Friday, 21 May 2010

This is Normal Now.

I was reading something somewhere the other day (it may have been an interview with someone like Amanda Holden in something like OK. Who knows? Doesn't matter) about how you spend the first year of your baby's life waiting to wake up and feel normal again. It's so true, for me anyway. I love my baby, love being a mammy (however Bad I may be) and all of that, but somewhere in the back of my mind has been the belief that things will get back to normal someday. But it's been gradually dawning on me that they won't. This is what's normal now. This is my life. Nappies, watching The Baby like a hawk (albeit a slightly blind and easily distracted hawk), childcare schedules, worrying about salt content, planning excursions around pushchair-accessibility - these are the things that shape my day and occupy my increasingly addled brain. You might think this is a bit of a depressing realisation, but actually, it's oddly liberating. Accepting that your child-free, carefree days are over means that you can look back on the ones you did have with fond nostalgia. And you're really appreciative if you get to play out for a night! You get less annoyed at the rubbish parts if you're not subconsciously thinking they are getting in the way of a more fun life.
Or maybe I'm wrong. Maybe I need to get out more. After all, I am getting life epiphanies from OK magazine.

Thursday, 20 May 2010

Brain Gone All Dead

Sorry, I'm being a bit rubbish lately, aren't I? I have a confession to make, that last post wasn't even original, it was something I posted on ScaryParenting a couple of weeks ago. I just didn't want to leave you, my faithful readership, down. I'm sure your lives would have continued somehow though.

Anyway, I've still not got anything scintillating for you I'm afraid. My brain's gone dead, probably because I've had to work really hard at work to make up for phoning in sick with a lurgy on Monday. It was not fun. No idea what it was. I possibly caught a chill, which sounds so lame and old-fashioned that I refuse to believe it could be true, but I did go for a walk to the beach in the rain in £4 pumps from Primark. And no socks.

There are probably tons of things to report about The Baby, who is generally being cool at the minute. She is getting in all sorts of trouble with her ever-improving crawling skills, and learning new things all the time. And either I am being less Bad at the moment, or I am just so Bad and so used to it that I don't even notice it anymore. Hmm. I think it could be the latter. I promise I will do you a round-up of developments soon. Bet you're on the edge of your seats.

Saturday, 15 May 2010

The No-Nap Workout Solution

I have cracked it! The secret to being able to eat whatever you want and lose your baby weight at the same time! Forget diets, Pilates, or expensive gym memberships, The No-Nap Workout Solution is where it's at.

The concept is simple - take your baby into the living room, and wait until she is rubbing her eyes, whinging, and generally carrying on like she is tired. Take her upstairs, lie her down, give her a kiss, and go back downstairs. After about 5 minutes, realise that you can hear some odd banging sounds through the monitor. Go back upstairs, to find your baby crawling about, standing up rattling the bars, or doing something else that is patently not sleeping. Lie her back down, and go back downstairs. Go back again in another 5 minutes to find her standing up again. Decide she isn't tired, so take her back downstairs, whereupon she will immediately start whingeing and rubbing her eyes again. Restart whole process and repeat until you have buns of steel, and have burnt off the calories in the Mars Bar you had in lieu of lunch.

Thursday, 13 May 2010

Not Interesting Enough To Warrant a Title.

Had a nice day with The Baby today, despite the fact that she still/again has a cold and is covered in snot. Note to self - do not wear black tops when your child has a cold and is likely to wipe her face all over you every 10 minutes. I also ended up having to change my trousers today, as The Baby decided to spill my latte all over me, and the floor of Debenhams cafe. Not just any latte, but a still quite hot latte with a ridiculous amount of caramel syrup in it. Lovely. My friend's baby decided to follow suit and knock his mam's juice over too. I don't think the staff were best pleased with us.

Had some retail therapy to get over the fact that David Cameron is actually in charge of the country. I am losing the will to be a politics bore now, I have decided just to give them all the benefit of the doubt, see what happens, and hope that the arts don't get too shafted. And root for David Miliband, who I am developing an odd little crush on. Bless him and his wonky little face.

And I finally found a food The Baby won't eat! Tried to give her asparagus today, with absoutely no success at all. I'm almost relieved to discover she doesn't like everything in the whole world! Shopping lists, however, are still a firm favourite. Oops.

Sunday, 9 May 2010

If You Are What You Eat...

..The Baby is a mountain. A big mountain of food. Doesn't matter what type of food. Any food will do. Here are various food-related things from the last few days.
  • We were at a barbecue the other day, and The Baby ate, among other things, rice cakes, some carrot, some cheese slices, some Milky Bar buttons, and a HUUUGE burger. It was massive. And she just shoved it in her face with great glee, while I tried very hard not to think about the salt content.
  • We are off bottles! Woop. Lots of parents struggle with this, while we did not even have a tiny tantrum. I'm not sure she noticed to be honest. As long as the milk is coming, she doesn't care how it comes. Ditto for how it tastes. Tried her with cow's milk, straight from the fridge - again, guzzled. I love that she's being cooperative, but also a tiny bit sad that she's not my teeny baby anymore.
  • This child has no table manners. Now, I realise that 10-month-old babies are not exactly renowned for their grace and ettiquette, but do all babies eat their expensive, organic fish pie by sucking it straight from the pouch? So uncouth.
  • I have spent all this afternoon making biscuits, after realising that spending £2.15 on 10 biscuits, just because they have no additives and are made of spelt, is ridiculous. Unfortunately, as you may have gathered from the other week's green cake debacle, baking is not my strong point. This is mainly because I don't like to be told what to do when it comes to food (or most things, in fact), which is fine when you're making a stew, but not so much when making biscuits. So after replacing golden syrup with apple puree, leaving the ground ginger in the shop, and using not enough sugar and too much flour, I have ended up with a boxful of things that are not quite cakes, and not quite biscuits. Ciscuits, perhaps. Still, I'm sure The Baby will eat them. They are made of food.


Being lame and keep forgetting to post. I'm blaming tiredness - I'm still not entirely caught up on my sleep after election night, mainly due to my slumber being interrupted by random thungs like my sister phoning to ask me if I think she has DVT ( you're 250 miles away, I don't know, go to the hospital), and Husband managing to set his alarm for midnight instead of 5.45 am. I have some minor victories to report (for once) and only a tiny amount of Bad stuff, which I will do later, when The Baby is not trying to press all the buttons on the laptop or play with my mug, as she is doing right now...

Thursday, 6 May 2010


This blog post is the cyber-equivalent of propping my eyelids open with matchsticks. I really wanted to stay awake and watch the election. But I'm seriously flagging already and it's only 1am. Most of the results are coming late due to high turnout. BBC coverage is not funny, Channel 4 is not timely enough. I don't have any crisps. Conservative have just taken their first seat from Labour. Am getting bored of the word "swing". Pretty sure I will fall asleep soon. And who can say what the country will be like when I wake up? (Probably exactly the same, just going for a bit of melodrama.)

Pampers. Full of ....

Dear Customer
We are always striving for improvement, or failing that, to spend less money. So, in order to make your nappies better, we have made them worse. We have made them smell really weird, so you will be constantly sniffing your baby's bum, wondering if she has done a poo. We have taken away the stuff that, you know, keeps them dry, at the back. This is to improve the fit. OK, they may leak everywhere, but at least your baby will be happy with the answer to "Does my bum look big in this?".
The new version of these nappies will be trialled in selected packs, which will be completely indistinguishable from the old ones when buying them. There will be a small card in the box asking for your opinion on these changes, which you won't read, but that's ok, because we don't really care about your opinion anyway. And, it goes without saying, we're still going to charge you a fortune.

Wednesday, 5 May 2010

Maybe Tomorrow..

I will post something. I am planning to be up all night anyway watching the election. Bit of swingometer action. Can't beat it. Although I do like the idea that bloke off Channel 4 said about demonstrating the swing by having big robots fighting instead. That would be cool.

Sorry, being rambly. Tired after another mini week at work, which incorporated a few fails, including missing two buses home, breaking my camera (although this didn't actually happen at work), the whole network going down for two hours (not a fail on my part, but still a fail) and making some terrible cups of tea. And I missed The Baby lots. Not sure if that's a fail, as it's not a good feeling particularly, or a win, as it proves I'm not heartless.

Anyway, as you can see, I am being incoherent and tedious. More tomorrow as I get simultaneously over-excited about the election and depressed about the prospect of Dave Giant Iggle Piggle Face as PM.

Sunday, 2 May 2010

Clean Clean Clean Clean Clean

Yessssss-ah! My house is finally clean. It has taken me all day (hampered at times by The Baby's sudden transformations into a very noisy limpet), but the house has been blitzed from top to bottom. It looks good. It might even look the best it ever has, but I would still stop short of saying it is immaculate. Immaculate I cannot do. I may have mentioned this before, but I have friends who, despite having jobs, babies, and often a pet and/or demanding or lazy husband to run around after, still manage to have houses that are show-home perfect. To these women, I must ask this question: WHERE IS ALL YOUR STUFF???? Where is the electricity bill that came the other day, but you think they've overestimated it, but need to read the meter? Where is the birthday present that you bought but have not yet given to your brother-in-law? Where is the button that fell off your cardigan yesterday? Where are the 7 boxes of dishwasher tablets you bought because they were on offer, without realising you don't have space in your cupboards for them?
Now I know everyone has a bit of a tidy when people come round, but I often have the sneaking suspicion that even at their worst, their clutter levels would barely reach a 7, to my 486. I think that what actually might be happening is that some people, unlike me, are blessed with the ability to deal with things straight away, put things back where they find them, and not buy things when they don't have the faintest clue where they will go. But I would dearly love to find out that other people do have all this stuff, and it's all straining against the door of the cupboard under the stairs.

Friday, 30 April 2010

Mess, Mess, Mess, Mess, Mess.

In case you couldn't have guessed from my title, it's been a messy couple of days. The Baby has had a stomach bug, which has been thoroughly unpleasant for all concerned, and has resulted in more outfit changes between the two of us than Katy Perry at the VMAs. The bug has also coincided with one of my frequent bouts of clumsiness, The Baby deciding to try out new finger foods (such as fish pie. And yoghurt.) and a promise I made to make Toy Story cakes for my nephew's 5th birthday party. What made me think that was something I would be remotely good at, I have no idea. But in for a penny and all that, I trundled off to Asda yesterday to buy supplies. Unfortunately, the bottle of yellow food colouring I picked up happened to be the one with a faulty seal. I carried it around for about five minutes before realising that my hands, shopping list, trolley handle, midriff and baby's forehead were all vivid yellow. And it seems that although baby wipes will remove most substances known to man, including Sharpie permanent markers and gloss point, are defeated by yellow natural food colouring.

Finding myself baking at the odd hour of 9am, I promised myself that today would be cleaner, and diligently removed all traces of cake mixture from the kitchen counters and floor. What a waste of time that was. It turns out, that icing fairy cakes is not one of my strong points, and now my kitchen is covered in icing the colour of the Squeeze Toy Aliens, and my fridge is full of cakes that look nothing like them. And my worktop may now be permanently dyed green, as I knocked the bottle of food colouring all over it.

Off to put the eyes on now. This should be good.

Thursday, 29 April 2010

It's a Funny Old Life...

... that of a working mum. One day you're creating elaborate (and probably unnecessary) spreadsheets and drawing up contracts for musical legends, the next you are dangling a naked baby under the shower to rinse her of bright yellow poo and kiwi fruit seeds.

At least at work, you get paid for cleaning up someone else's sh*t.

Wednesday, 28 April 2010


I totally had something I was going to write about tonight. It was going to be awesome and everything. But now I've forgotten what it was. So I am rubbish.

Tuesday, 27 April 2010

Non-Baby Related Post Alert!

Nothing very exciting has happened with The Baby in the last couple of days, and she's only fallen off the sofa once, so I don't really have anything parenty to relate.

I have, however, become slightly obsessed with the election, and am spending every spare moment reading debates on the internet, watching debates on the TV, reading any papers I can find and generally being a politics bore. I know I'm not exactly the greatest political analyst of my generation, but I know enough to witter on about it at length to anyone who will listen, and Husband, who doesn't want to but has no choice.

Today, I am mostly annoyed about how anyone can think that supporting the BNP is a good thing to do. Their Party Election Broadcast is simultaneously one of the funniest and one of the scariest things I have ever seen. Stirring music, images of Winston Churchill and ridiculous statements of "fact" a go-go. Ugh. Can't go on about this anymore as it's too depressing.

I'm going to go now and read some party manifestos. I don't even know why I'm bothering really, as I know how I'll vote and I live in a seat that is safer than a KiddyInfinity Pro (winner of Which's highest rating for a forward-facing child seat). In a tank.

Sunday, 25 April 2010

The Problem is Choice

"Can I help you there?"
"Yes, we need to buy the next stage car seat for our daughter, please."
"Certainly. What sort of thing are you looking for?"
"A car seat."
"Right. The Group 1 seats are on these 7 shelves here"
"Hmm. There's lots of them. What's that one like?"
"That's the DriveMax Leopard at £99.99. It has 5 recline positions and the unique Grip and Clip fastening system."
"OK, and what about that one?"
"That's the DriveMax Leopard Plus. It costs £189.99"
"Well what's the difference between that one and the first one?"
"The Leopard Plus, instead of the Grip and Clip system, uses the European-approved Clip and Grip system. And it has an integrated cupholder."
"And this one? Is it really £13.99?"
"Yes, that's the Crappia Fling. It is secured using Blu-Tack, and comes with a free child locator key fob, so you can find your baby after it's hurtled through the windscreen."
"That doesn't sound very safe.."
"No, it's not."
"So why do you sell it?"
"We cater for all types of baby here, madam, including those who like to live on the edge."
"Right. What about this one?"
"That is the Seaty 3000. If you have it in green, you can have £20 off, because someone in Head Office ordered too many."
"Ok, we'll take that one."
"Great, they are currently being stored in an aircraft hanger just north of Bristol, so we can deliver it to you in 1-12 working days. Please stay in your house for that whole time, as we can't re-deliver it if we miss you."
"Brilliant. Thanks."
"Have a nice day!"