Because what the internet needs is more wittering about rubbish parenting

Monday, 31 January 2011

My Husband is Not Bad At All

What has Husband done to earn such enthusiastic praise, I hear you cry? Well, as I think I may have mentioned, he bought me a train ticket to London to go and see my sister as a Christmas present, and did a sterling job of looking after The Toddler this weekend while I did so (with a little help from the Grandmas). He even did some washing. He's a keeper.

The weekend was lovely. As much as being with my child is thrilling and rewarding and whatever, being away from her every now and again is pretty damn good too. It's nice to get woken up by daylight instead of whingeing. It's nice to eat all of your breakfast without it being taken off your plate when you're not looking. And it's really nice to go out and do growed-up things, like go to the theatre (not serious theatre, dahhling, but the rather fun and fabulous Wicked) and indulge in a sneaky white wine and lemonade (I know, a bit teenager-like, but they had no soda).

And another, quite unexpected, nice thing. I was looking forward to having time to just be me, but of course, I'm not just me at the minute, am I? I'm me and The New'un. And in the whirlwind of life that is looking after The Toddler as she simultaneously learns new things (more words, where all the exciting gadgets in the living room are hidden) and forgets things (not to put money in her mouth, that she's not supposed to go up stairs on her own), I don't get much time to remember that. So it was good to have the chance to enjoy being pregnant, and to think about The New'un, not just as a sibling for The Toddler, as I have a tendency to do, but as a brand-new little person in its own right. Because I still woke up at the indecent hour of 8.10am on Sunday morning, I got to lie in bed in total peace, feeling The New'un having a little squirm, and wondering if it will be a boy or a girl, and what it might look like, and what kind of personality it might have. So a very good weekend, all told. And to think, for Husband's Christmas present from me, he got a jar of jellybeans and a book about Lego. I may have to try harder next year.

Tuesday, 25 January 2011


Quite a productive evening! Spent an almost not unhealthy amount of time discussing baby names on ScaryParenting, bought The Toddler a mattress, watched Big Fat Gypsy Weddings (my, that's an astounding programme!), and done some ironing. Note that that's SOME ironing, not THE ironing, so perhaps I shouldn't be quite so proud of myself.

I'm now sitting on the sofa, sipping Diet Coke (but not too much, gotta watch the caffeine intake. Apparently) to see if it will wake The New'un up. I've reached the stage now where I can feel it wriggling around on a regular basis. I like it, it makes me think that it's happy. I realise that's a bit stupid - it's not moving because it's happy, it's moving because it's an unborn child and that's what they do - but it makes me smile a bit anyway. For now, at least. Right now, the movements are all nice little pops and flutters, that feel pleasantly like it's just saying hello. I like this stage better than what's coming. I know you're supposed to love and cherish feeling the baby move, but The Toddler was one hell of a wriggler, and I've got to admit that she just freaked me out more and more as she got bigger. She writhed, and wriggled, and kicked, and batted, and punched like my internal organs had done her wrong. She flipped and flopped and somersaulted like me when my restless legs kick in. At times, I thought she was trying to bust her way out, Alien-stylee. Random bits of her would suddenly stick out of my belly, and try as I might, I could never identify which bit it was. My colleagues got used to me putting down my minutes in the middle of meetings and trying to poke it back in. Which never worked, by the way.

Alas, things are no better now. She just does it to my face, rather than my innards.

Thursday, 20 January 2011


Had my 20-week scan yesterday. Do you know what that means? Well, first of all, it means we got to see our baby again, and find out that everything seems ok, but second of all, that means I'm halfway through!!!! How did that happen? That means in another 20 weeks or so, I will have my baby! My baby, by the way, who seems to have extraordinarily large feet. Really. Even the sonographer commented on it. We have a fantastic picture of just its leg. we've got the normal full body pictures too, but I am greatly enjoying freaking everyone out by just showing them the picture of a leg.

We decided not to find out if it was a boy or a girl. I had wanted to know, and harangued Husband for weeks until he agreed to let me find out, but then, being a typical woman, as soon as he did, I changed my mind. And I'm happy I did. It's nice that there's at least a little bit of mystery and excitment about this pregnancy. Your first time, everything is new, you are thoroughly unprepared for everything, and it is like discovering a new world. Second time around, not so much. But I did still feel amazingly happy to see my little squirming baby, picking its nose on that screen. Even if it does have clown feet.

Tuesday, 18 January 2011

Broken Record...

... and a gruesome, tedious and oversharing one at that!

So yay, One Born Every Minute is back on! Which, as I have realised today, gives me yet another excuse to talk about childbirth. Seriously, I have a problem. I cannot stop myself. In the office this afternoon, a conversation about God knows what turned into a conversation about One Born Every Minute, which turned into, once again, me wittering on about my own labour. Thankfully, the person I sit next to is a good friend, who also has no boundaries when it comes to sharing, but I probably haven't really known the two people opposite me long enough to talk about crowning in such detail. Also, the office is open-plan, and I am quite loud.

Why do I do this? Especially to people who haven't given birth. I'm probably putting them off for life. Or at the very least making them want to move desks. I think a lot of it is that I did have a pretty good labour, and when you feel positive about something, it's only natural to want to share. And share. And share some more. Which is a problem, because however great your childbirth experience was, you're still talking about something unfeasibly large squeezing it's way out of something unfeasibly small. You're still talking about pain, and screaming, and blood, and extreme indignity. Why would anyone think that was a suitable topic of conversation in polite company? So perhaps I should learn to control this odd compulsion of mine, and learn to talk about other things. So I'm off to learn about macroeconomics and the Impressionist painters.

Friday, 14 January 2011

I Dreamed A Dream...

I had a bizarre dream last night. I dreamt I had the baby. Had it in the morning. It was a girl. Went home straight away. Had made plans to go shopping that evening. So went shopping, leaving the as-yet-unnamed brand-new baby at home with my parents. Got home to find the baby (who I started referring to as the same name as The Toddler) crying and looking ill. Realised this was because I hadn't fed her yet. Sat down to try and feed her. She wouldn't latch on. Tried and tried again. Got frustrated. Then couldn't find the baby. Looked all over the house. Found her on the floor behind the sofa, looking a bit poorly and very very sad. Woke up.

Hmm. Anyone else think I've got some subconscious anxiety about my parenting abilities?

Thursday, 13 January 2011


Do you think that's a thing? If so, The Toddler has it.

This afternoon was going moderately well. Spent an enjoyable few hours at a friend's house, where the children only hit each other in the face a few times. Went to Tesco, and made the slightly unwise decision to let The Toddler roam free - she tried to pick up several loaves of garlic bread and a three-way plug adaptor, and then refused to head for the tills. It was cute and amusing, but kind of a workout. On arriving home, The Toddler ate her snack relatively tidier, and then settled down with Special Agent Oso.

And then came tea-time. The Toddler demanded to go in her highchair before her food was entirely cool, so I put her in it and gave her some cheese. Cheese makes The Toddler Very Happy Indeed. Once the cheese was gone, I put a plate of lovingly homecooked beef casserole with pasta in front of her. She took one look at it, burst into tears, pulled off her bib, and tried to throw herself out of her highchair. This burst of hysteria mutated into a tantrum of truly heroic proportions. I honestly have no idea how a some chunks of beef and a handful of carrot can provoke this kind of reaction. For 25 minutes. And I have no idea how to deal with these kind of episodes. I tried cuddling, singing, TV, sternly instructing her to calm down, trying to make her drink water, giving her bread, shouting "What do you want?!!!", putting her on the floor to scream. Eventually resorted to the dummy. She calmed down. And then the little sod ate the whole bowl of casserole as if it was the most delicious thing she'd ever had.


Sunday, 9 January 2011


Gah. Resolution fail. I promised to update my blog more often, and I have not. Oops.

Anyway, this week, I have admitted defeat. I have recognised that I no longer fit in my trousers, surrendered to the elasticated waistband, and bought a new pair of maternity jeans. I actually already own about 4 pairs of maternity jeans, but they have been in the loft for a year and a half and need a wash, and as my washing pile is currently nearly as tall as I am, I may well have given birth before I get around to it.

I'm not really looking forward to wearing all my round-person clothes again to be honest. Maternity clothes are weird. For one thing, no-one wants to spend a fortune on things they're only going to wear for a few months (if they're cheapskates like me, anyway), so you end up buying a very minimal capsule wardrobe. Which sounds good in theory, but in reality means you just get sick of looking at the damn things. And even if you wanted to buy loads and loads of lovely things, well, you can't. Makers of maternity wear have decided, in their wisdom, that as soon as a woman gets pregnant, she has no need for jumpers, well-fitting trousers, tops that don't have puffy sleeves, or anything remotely stylish. If, however, you want to spend your gestating months in polyester bootcut trousers and checked shirts with a smattering of sequins on, you're golden.

Perhaps I will eschew maternity clothes this time, and spend the remainder of my pregnancy wearing the same pair of leggings and one of husbands old hoodies. Actually, if I don't somehow get some washing done, I may have no other option.

Monday, 3 January 2011

Happy New Year!

New Year's Resolution No. 1 - Update blog more often.

Happy 2011! Eek! This year, I will have two children! Two! That's one, and then one more one. Slightly frightened.

So festive frolics are over and done, and it's back to work tomorrow. We've had a lovely time over Christmas, slight morning sickness, teething and horrific colds aside. The Toddler has eaten nothing of any nutritional value in about 10 days (oh, tell a lie, she had a clementine yesterday). New Year's Resolution No. 2 - cook wholesome and nutritious meals for all the family, and resort less to cheese sandwiches and that culinary classic, pasta and Philedelphia.

The Toddler, Husband and myself have been lavished with many wonderful presents, which has warmed my heart, but also made me feel very guilty when our presents for them were either rubbish, stingy, unimaginative, all three, or worse, non-existent. New Year's Resolution No. 3 - become the generous and thoughtful friend and relative that my nearest and dearest deserve. And send thank-you cards.

The best present I received was from Husband and my sister. Together they have provided me with a Toddler-free weekend! Train tickets to London and tickets to a show! Woo! The Toddler is very cute and engaging at the minute (her new tricks include saying "Bye-bye!!!" very enthusiastically to anyone who leaves the room, even on the TV, singing the backing vocals to "Gold" by Spandau Ballet, and talking in whole, if entirely incomprehensible sentences), she is also very exhausting. And strange. She's currently hanging off my shoulder making odd babbling noises and shoving her hands down the back of my bra.

Husband's best present was a Kinect for the Xbox. He is very impressed. He got Dance Central, a game which should more accurately be called "So You Think You Can Dance? Ha Ha, You're Wrong". It is hilarious, and surprisingly knackering, even on easy. We're so unfit. New Year's Resolution No. 4 - try and do at least a fraction of the exercise I did whilst pregnant the first time. Not holding out much hope for that one.

The Toddler got many wonderful and exciting presents. So what did she play with all of Boxing Day? A ribbon. New Year's Resolution No. 5 - spend less money on stuff that The Toddler just does not need. In fact, just spend less money in general. It's probably a wise idea, what with the pending arrival.

Which brings me to the biggest thing about 2011 - the arrival of The New'un. Yes, in approximately 5 months, all being well, The New'un will be here, ready to unleash yet more chaos on the Bad Mammy household. New Child's Resolution - don't second-guess myself. Continue to do it my way. Ask for help when it's needed, and take it when it's offered. Enjoy my baby, without worrying if whatever I'm doing is going to traumatise her for the rest of her life. And realise I'm a good mother, just doing whatever it takes to get from day to day.

Hopefully I can keep that one.