Thursday, 20 October 2011

Raging Tyres

There is much to talk about but first I must share this with you. Every now and again I idly look up how people who read my blog have found me - shockingly it is mainly from Facebook where I post the link on my wall  - but there are also a few from netmums or similar and occasionally people accidentally stumble upon me thanks to a google search for something entirely unrelated like Spa + SE23 or similar. However this week, someone found my blog after putting in the following search words "head to toe measles beaver".  Is it just me or is that a) an hilarious search full stop and b) not something I would ever have believed in a million years would lead them to a blog from an overweight suburban housewife. I am tempted to read each and every post to find where those words all make an appearance.  I suppose Beaver could have come from Bea going to Beavers and head to toe is pretty common but put them together with measles? I am mystified. I am also amazed that the number of UK and US readers are almost the same. It came as a total shock. I do have a sister in America so that would explain a few of the page views but I doubt she has time to click on my page a hundred times a week which means that there must be actual people in America catching up with my comings and goings. Surely there must be a lot that is lost in translation. Still, I am grateful and will remember not to be rude about Americans in the future.

Today has been massively hectic - in my world. I imagine someone with importance in the World would view my day as quite restful - in particular I am thinking of Nicolas Sarkozy who allocated a full half an hour of quality time to meet and greet his newborn daughter before jetting off to another important meeting. In comparison to that my day was a breeze, but still hectic in comparison to a usual day. Four trips to and from the school - two school runs and two parent teacher meetings - playgroup, food shopping, over an hour at a garage with Ted waiting for them to replace my illegal tyres and puncture - house tidying, meal preparation and a road rage incident. I did get to sit down once they were all in bed only to find K distinctly disinterested in a bloody football match but resolutely refusing to change the channel until the dulltastic crap ended. That put me in a good mood.

I will start at the most interesting part first - road rage. A STUPID BITCH WOMAN and a slightly less rude man blocked in my car at school pick up with their illegally parked cars so that after I had picked up, walked out and strapped in four children I then had to wait for a further fifteen minutes before either of the idiots graced us with their (in one case considerable) presence. The considerable female was cross with me for being cross at her and used the ridiculous defence that she 'wasn't the only one doing it'. STUPID. I lied to emphasise my point by saying that we had now missed our Doctors appointment I had waited all week for. She was unmoved - to be honest, she was 'that type' - I don't think she'd have cared if I said I was bleeding to death and she had stopped me seeking urgent medical attention. She was, in my humble opinion, ridiculously selfish. The male arrived after the slanging match between me and the considerable woman had concluded and did at least apologise politely so I just slammed my door shut and shouted through the closed window at him. I think I might have overreacted a tad. I mean, it's not like I am Nicolas Sarkozy and they were eating into my valuable half an hour with my newborn daughter or anything. Also I should admit that the children were quite happy in the car and just wanted me to stop being angry but still, it's the principle. The double parking issue in the road outside school is long and documented and people know full bloody well not to do it, and if you do double park, do it bloody quickly, don't hang around chatting in the playground as if you have not a care in the world. GRRRRRR.

I would never normally use the car for the school run but Ted and I had just hot footed it back from the garage after the illegal tyre replacement which took a lot longer than expected and there was not enough time to dump the car and get to school in time.  It also means that I have to go back to the garage yet again to get the tracking sorted - that will be the third day in a row - Wednesday to price and order the tyres, Thursday for tyre fitting and Friday for tracking. Cars are SO DULL. And expensive. At least it means that the trip to Suffolk on Saturday will now be a safe and legal one. I for one am muchos excitedos about our half term country trip. Lie ins, good food and cashmere loo roll are all awaiting. (Word has reached the woman herself that I have told you all she has cashmere loo roll and is exceptionally keen that I point out that it 'was on offer' in Waitrose and she would never waste money on such frippery at full price - I hope you are all relieved.)

Parent teachers - nothing exciting - usual. Both children are normal. Neither has two heads or two brain cells. As far as I can tell everyone is told pretty much the same thing when the children are so small. I think with infant schools it's all standard fodder for the parents - they are learning to read and write, some better than others. I would dearly love it if this wasn't the case so that I could boast about my two perfect children as a reflection of my considerable brilliance, but alas I have produced standard offspring as a result of my standardised parenting. The only bit of excitement was Bea being put on the smiley face for correctly identifying a Foo Fighters song and I cannot take credit for that as her 'cool' music knowledge comes courtesy of K. Clearly I have only taught her Adele, lots of soundtracks, Hannah Montana and just recently Five courtesy of The Vault music channel - genius invention.

I think that's bought you all up to date. Scintillating stuff I know. I am going to have a bath and mentally prepare myself for the Harvest Festival Concert tomorrow. Bea is looking forward to my 'loser' signal but I am dreading the whole shebang. I have tried to offload Ted so that I might take some pleasure in sitting through the singing but he is, as ever, my constant companion and I shall have to pack a mighty arsenal to get through it with him. His current propensity to run away could cause a bit of scene so I am going to have to be a bit imaginative. Or dastardly. Either way I will let you know. Until then amigos. xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Tuesday, 18 October 2011

Birthdays and Brilliance

Good Evening. Saturday's training day was not as bad as I thought actually. Turns out our trainer was a MAN. I know. You don't meet a lot of them in the world of WW. He was standing there all thin and male and I admit to being slightly sceptical as to how he could possibly have any idea what it was like to need Weight Watchers when all of a sudden he revealed his before pictures. Astonishingly he had lost over seven stone - I was shocked. He was so thin. He was also very funny and not unpleasant to look at which made the day bearable. I must stop being so sceptical and mean spirited. It is far too like my mother for my liking.  The best bit about the whole day was that I will get paid for it and I got a free lunch. I really shouldn't complain. There are worse places to be than a Holiday Inn on the A2 whilst getting paid and fed. Plus, by the time I got home I only had to do bath and bed. I can't think why I was moaning in the first place. Although I have put on three pounds this week and so I am choosing to blame the meal I ate there. It couldn't possibly be any of the chocolate or leftover food I ate on my own at home.

Sunday was a joyous affair as K took them all to his long suffering mother's - thank goodness for Mother in Laws. I had a whole afternoon to myself and it was fab. I went to see my gorgeous friend for lunch, who is as skint as us, so I brought the beans and she provided the toasted bagels to put them on. I take great comfort in other people suffering as we do. Although without wanting to jinx things, there are mighty rumours that next month is going to be exciting money wise and I will finally be able to celebrate my Birthday in the style to which I was accustomed about a decade ago. As a University student my Birthday was a massive celebration where I would head to London and spend hundreds of pounds shopping before an expensive meal out with friends and lots of drink, but now it is a far more subdued affair. If I can get to the hairdressers on my birthday and a cheap local meal out then I am happy. Last year we couldn't quite afford the meal after my hair was done so we went out for a bottle of wine and got takeaway fish and chips on the way home. It was still the best Birthday I'd had in years - especially as one of my mummy friends threw me a birthday lunch whilst K had Ted for the day, so all in all it was pretty perfect as Bdays go. This year it is a Saturday and I shall be making the most of it. I can't wait. 12th November people. Make a note.

K has just told me that for his next wife he wants a 'home maker'. I am hideously offended. That is like me saying that for my next husband I want a 'proper' Estate Agent. He does not see it like that and is trying to dig himself out of it by saying that I am clearly too intelligent to want to stay at home baking. Evidently I am not too intelligent to 'just' stay at home but if I were baking too that would be a waste of my considerable talent. Am I the ONLY wife in the world that doesn't have a clean, tidy house awaiting my husband's return from work with sleeping, well behaved children and a fabulous home cooked meal in the oven? I am pretty sure I am not. I mean, I know they exist out there but I think their husbands must either be Very Rich or perfect as well so that the wife feels she must live up to his high expectations. His revelation is particularly hurtful tonight as I have made home made burgers - FROM SCRATCH for his supper. I know. Not even a kumquat in them. The Mother in Law sent back a fabulous care package with K which included a huge amount of minced beef. So, faced with hungry children this evening and not enough tomato to make spag bol I hit upon the genius idea to try out meatballs and burgers for the first time ever. Turns out I am a natural. I found some month old spring onions in the bottom of the fridge hidden within a plastic bag - stripped them of the slightly mouldy outer layer and chopped and fried them. Then I mixed them with the huge amount of mince, two eggs (in date which is quite a find), some frozen breadcrumbs my sister gave me when she moved house two years ago, garlic puree (too much actually - turns out a good squeeze is way too much - it is unlikely we will be finding our new partners any time soon) and salt and pepper. Et Voila! Half were made into meatballs for the children which they ATE. I almost cried with joy. Then K came home, almost fainted at the shock of ready prepared burgers I had made by hand and then proceeded to put in the oven for him and then he also ate them - and said they were entirely edible! Hooray for me! Who knew I was secretly brilliant in the kitchen? Maybe I am not too intelligent after all and I could spend more time in the kitchen being perfect. It's a thought.

That is enough from me now - I don't want to make you all jealous with all my good news and brilliance. I will leave you with Birthday wishes for the Mother in Law who clocks up another year on Thursday. Many happy returns and cheers for the beef and the Diet Coke - they have made my day. xxxxxxxxxxxxx

Friday, 14 October 2011

Doctoring and Recordering

Today required a trip to the Doctors again. What with injections, female rubbish and all the usual childhood ailments of my offspring, I seem to spend an inordinate amount of time at our surgery.  If I ever got a chance to choose the next surgery we could join and not just gratefully pounce on the only one accepting people, I would do a tour of all the options and then pick the one that had a comfortable and interesting waiting room in which we could while away the hours. Due to the area surrounding our Doctor's Surgery (I don't want to be rude but it is really not glamorous) a large number of the patients are the type of people who allow their children to walk off with the toys and books in the 'children's area' which means that a few weeks after any new toys are left, they are gone again. For the last few months I have noticed that they have now stopped bothering to add any new toys and so we are finally left with a large and broken plastic toadstool, a wooden cooker and a plastic baby cube in the sparse, plastic chair-filled waiting room. These toys have been here for years - I suppose because they are too big for anyone to surreptitiously walk out with hidden under their buggy - and therefore hold very little appeal to my children which means that all they have to entertain themselves with is the plastic chairs. The whole situation is particularly saddening and yet again, reminds me of how different life is in the country. At my mother's local surgery (admittedly a drive rather than a walk away if I was trying to be 'glass half full' about it all) the children's area has the most amazing array of fabulous toys and books, all well cared for and clean, in a nice carpeted area. The children and I actually enjoy a visit to this Surgery and the exciting toy section, which is lucky as we have to go almost every time we visit my mother's. G has an amazing ability to store up all illnesses for when we go to Suffolk - in the last few years there has been at least three ear infections, a chest infection and the Chicken Pox - and these are just the ones I remember - there could easily be more. We are off for half term next week and I'm thinking I should get mum to pre-book our emergency appointment now.

So, this morning I was at the Docs for Ted whose lungs are once again 'crook' (I've gone all Neighbours on you). I have spent the last few nights not sleeping for more than a few hours at a time due to Ted's amazing coughing and spluttering. I have been administering his inhaler religiously (he HATES it) but it wasn't making much difference and last night he was sick with all the coughing so after another sleepness night I awoke this morning and used the exciting new automated booking system to make an appointment (small things amaze me at 7am in the morning - finding out we could now use a computer to book a Doctor's appointment at all hours of the day and night instead of the randomised first past the post 7am battle I have usually had to fight - was almost mind blowing. I attempted to wake K up to tell him of the new exciting automated booking system but he clearly has a higher threshold for excitement and remained resolutely asleep).  By 10 0'clock this morning Ted's chest infection was confirmed. I sort of already knew that he had one and instantly felt 'the guilt' for not taking him for diagnosis sooner - although in my considerable defence he was still running around as normal and getting in to all kinds of trouble so I didn't think it could be that serious.  As penance for not taking him sooner, I rang my mother. Sure enough, she said 'I told you so', having heard him coughing down the phone on Wednesday. Then, when I told her the Doctor had said I shouldn't have been giving him Ibuprofen because it doesn't help chests she tried to talk but kept stopping herself in an annoyoing manner suggesting that she didn't feel I could 'cope' with hearing what she was going to say. Eventually she managed to finish a sentence and accused me of being far too 'free and easy' with medicating the children and told me I needed to be more careful - I give it out to Bea 'as if it were sweets'.  I admit I have ever so slightly misused Medised in the past and actually the present, but I feel accusing me of over dosing the children was a little harsh. I was so troubled by her accusations I double checked the date on the Ibuprofen we were last prescribed and it was a 100ml bottle from March. Each dose is 5ml (plus at least 1 ml of spillage per dose) which means that even if I hadn't spilt a drop that is only twenty doses divided by three children in just over six months. I am pretty sure with these statistics I cannot fall in to the drug-abusing mother category.  Still, phone call completed I felt justly punished for my negligent mothering over Ted and carried on to a lunch party for a newly three year old. Ted didn't seem that affected by either the temperature or the constant wheeze from his chest infection so it seemed silly to cancel. (That and I knew there was Cava, pancakes and cakes available so he would have had to be extremely sick for me not to attend.)

After I ate myself fat at the party (I ate the children's pancakes as well as the adult mozzarella salad on top of a number of cakes - not literally - that would be weird even for me, although I did on my Hen Weekend make a cold Coq au Vin and Mayo sandwich which I thought was perfectly normal behaviour but the reaction of everyone else would seem that it wasn't) there wasn't enough time to go home before the school run so I took a sleeping Ted to the cafe and had a wonderful half an hour of silence reading The Sun and drinking Diet Coke in the actual sun. It felt very decadent and amazingly peaceful before the chaos of the school pick up. 

Upon pick up I learnt that the BIG news of today's day of learning was that Bea is NOT going to be playing her recorder in the ridiculously STUPID harvest festival. (Gasp) A few weeks ago, after three terms of expensive recorder lessons, Bea and I were thrilled to learn that she was finally going to be playing as part of the recorder group in the (painful for me) school concert. Finally, I thought, after two years of sitting through numerous recorder recitals by other people's children, I could sit on a child's chair in a hot and stuffy hall beaming with pride at my very own offspring playing a painfully slow version of 'The Grand Old Duke of York'. However, today she has been unceremoniously dropped. Now I know how Cheryl Cole must have felt. And Kelly Brook. It is upsetting. Bea has admitted to being upset about it several times this afternoon which makes me feel terrible. After a while I couldn't take her upset any longer and decided to PR the situation. I sat her down and informed her that the people who were allowed to play in the concert had clearly been spending an awful lot of time practising their poxy recorders whilst we have been out having a brilliant amount of fun and excitement over recent weekends which means that in fact, we are the winners and they are massive, sad losers. So, we have decided that when the recorder group stands up to play the bloody Grand old Duke of Sodding York, sans Bea, she will look at me and I will make the universal sign of the loser and we will laugh happily together. (I also, and I feel a little guilty over this one, told Bea that the poor woman was actually a rather rubbish teacher and that I will soon find her a 'proper' teacher for one on one teaching. I am deseperately worried that Bea might pipe up in the next lesson and tell the poor woman my thoughts on her lack of teaching ability. I DO hate confrontation and she has my email address.)

I am loathed to leave you as it means we are getting ever closer to a whole flipping day talking about Weight Watchers tomorrow. 'Training'. The very word makes me think of Bras, potties and long days spent in hotel conference rooms talking about losing weight. If I never spend another day in a sodding hotel conference room it will be too soon. Tomorrow is far too soon. I'll take a pad and pencil to write down anything amusing for your delectation. In the mean time I hope you will enjoy your Saturdays even more, safe in the knowledge that I am imprisoned in a room in Bexleyheath and that you are not. Sob. xxxxx

Wednesday, 12 October 2011

Ted Tracking

This morning I had a knock at the front door. It was bad timing as Bea and G had just been having an argument and I'd sent them upstairs to cool off. The knocking became insistent and was accompanied by the words 'mummy' so I glanced over at the door and discovered that the person at the door, was in fact, Ted.

It turns out that when Bea and G were getting in the milk together this morning Ted snuck out the front door in his Ben 10 outfit and no shoes and socks. Apparantly Bea told me that he had run out but I clearly didn't hear her and what perplexes me more is that she saw me shut the front door behind them because of the cold. She just shrugged when I quizzed her - clearly still annoyed by her argument with G. Anyway, I had assumed Ted was in front of the TV with his Cheerios which is where I park him in the morning so that I can do the packed lunches, fill in forms, do the dishwasher, get dressed etc etc. I cannot tell you the shock I got to discover that he had actually been roaming the streets with cold feet. It must have only been about ten minutes or so, but still that is a very long time for an unaccompanied two year old. I still can't get over the shock. The memory of Ted's arms banging on the door and yelling Mummy will stay with me forever.

It was the start of a morning of him running off. I took him to Dulwich Park to unleash his energetic side with miles and miles of unadulterated scootering fun, but upon identifying that there was no trouble to be had with the scooter he dumped it and set off on foot in to the thick bushes and brambles, knowing that I wouldn't bother coming after him. We did get moving every now and again but then he'd dive off into another bush. After an hour or so I did actually hide from him to see if he would at any point become bothered that he couldn't see me and he did, but not scared enough to stop doing it. So I abandoned the park trip and took him to extort money from his father. The good news is that the morning's excitement has tired him out sufficiently and he is finally asleep during the day after 48 hours of no day-time sleep.  I have never been more relieved.

I am going to go and may hay while the sun shines now. I am going to google toddler tracking gadgets now. I wonder if I can fit him with a chip like you can with dogs? I will let you know. x

Tuesday, 11 October 2011

Wedding, Birthday and a Premier Inn

I cannot believe I prattled on about TV and cashmere loo roll last week when there was so much excitement on the horizon - I didn't even mention it which is strange for me. It's lucky really, otherwise you might have been on tenterhooks all weekend so perhaps my subconscious was just putting you first and allowing you a stress free weekend, knowing that I would be having quite the opposite.

So, after the loo roll ran out and the Cava ran dry we set off on Friday morning to K's brother's wedding in sunny Essex. Did I mention K is from Essex? I'm not sure I did. Anyway it is an odd fit as I am not particularly 'Essex'. Actually my father mentioned it in his speech at our wedding  - I believe his exact words were, "I'm not quite sure how an English student from Exeter managed to find an Estate Agent from Essex, but here we are'. I shall tell you all about it one day but not now - there is too much other stuff to get said. Anyway, we went off to Essex (I must also mention at this point that this is not the Essex of the popular TV programme, it is the normal, everyday Chelmsford Essex - more fake nails and beer than vajazzles and Champagne) and we headed towards the Premier Inn, Basildon (Rayleigh). Such a salubrious place. It was attached to a Harvester and was on a major roundabout on the main road in to Southend but Bea and G could not believe their luck. They have never stayed in a hotel before so had no comparison point. Unfortunately I have stayed in many and their excitement was not contagious.

The building might not have been particularly beautiful but the staff were rather wonderful as they knew it was Bea's Birthday the following day which endeared me to the place no end. As we got to our room we discovered that they had stuck a 'Birthday Princess' banner to our door and inside were a number of pink and white balloons as decoration. Bea and I were very touched, but we had no time to enjoy the balloons as we had ten minutes to get dressed and out again so that K could arrive at the wedding IN TIME to act as Usher. The importance of him arriving on time had been mentioned an AWFUL lot all day. I was VERY aware that he couldn't be even a minute late and that it was VITAL he got there in good time. It had bought quite a lot of stress to the days events and relations between us were 'tense' at best. Particularly because I missed the turn off for the hotel which meant we actually made it to Southend before we could turn around and head back in the right direction. However I was feeling a little peed off myself as I had by this point in the proceedings already organised all of Bea's birthday presents, party, investigated and booked the hotel, emailed the hotel and then spoken to the manager about doing something special for Bea, worked out the route for us to get to the hotel and then onto the wedding, packed mine and the children's things, got them all dressed and ready, done my hair, make up and painted my nails (both sets) before getting us all in the car and on the road. K had ironed a shirt and suit and spent a lot of time asking me the same questions over and over again about timings. (Actually he had also nipped to Sainsbury's to change my dress for a different size and put air in the flat tyre so I shouldn't be quite so cruel but even with that exertion the division of labour was by no means equal).

Anyway, with a little bit of luck and more careful map reading we managed to get to the Golf and Country club venue five minutes earlier than expected and all was calm for about five minutes. Up until Ted was let loose actually. He made short shrift of the chairs neatly lined up for the ceremony by running through them at speed. He then wanted to leave after I made it clear that that was not acceptable. He actually wanted to leave for many, many hours to come as well. Weddings and Ted do not mix. I have decided that he will not be accompanying us to the Godmother's wedding in January. We only made it through the ceremony thanks to K's cousin lending me her iphone with millions of kids apps on which mercifully kept him happily entertained. I was so relieved that he hadn't done anything too heinous, apart from speak up at the 'does anyone here know of any lawful impediment' bit, that I relaxed far too early. The drinks reception turned out to be far more stressful than I could ever have imagined. After the ceremony we went outside where not only were there people still trying to play a round of golf but there were also 'Ted hazards' everywhere, such as fences with Ted sized holes in them, wide open spaces and a duck pond. There was also intermittent rain which meant we had to move into a smaller room whilst the official photos took place. Ted did not enjoy being confined to such a small area and B and G were slightly perplexed as to why we couldn't just go back and 'enjoy' the hotel. Ted made a valiant attempt to drown when the rain stopped momentarily by running through a hedge so that he could get to the part of the duck pond without fencing. After that I kept him inside with the others and we played with a lift which I also had to go in with them for fear of them becoming trapped and therefore taking the attention away from the bride and groom. Eventually all photos were taken and we got to go and eat. This was the most enjoyable part of the entire day as the food was good and the bride had thoughtfully given each of the children an activity bag to keep them entertained. I relaxed a bit. Then the speeches began and Ted had had enough of being good so I had to remove him from proceedings entirely. By quarter to nine I admitted defeat and took them back to the hotel to leave K to enjoy things without worrying about where Ted had managed to run away to. Even the waitresses knew Ted's name by the time we left as we had been running around yelling his name so much.

Ted's excitement and sugar high remained in place until about quarter to ten when he and his brother and sister finally passed out in our 'comfortable' room and I could run to the car to get Bea's presents in and ready for the morning. There was a particularly stinky drunk man in reception as I passed through which added to the whole experience and I began to regret my decision to leave K at the party. Luckily the man clearly moved on and K eventually arrived home still able to stand which was far better than I'd hoped for. The morning finally arrived after a sleepless night with Ted and actually proved a huge success as Bea loved her presents, the staff sang her Happy Birthday at breakfast and presented her with a cake and a card after she had devoured her coco pops, croissant and cooked breakfast. She most certainly takes after me in that respect. On the way home, we popped in on K's mum who was a little the worse for wear after getting in at 2am. We didn't cut her any slack though and after getting her to make us both a cup of tea, and eventually get the over excited dogs behind a closed door, G had a tantrum before promptly throwing up all over the garden path outside her back door. At that point we thought it might be time to leave. So we did.

The rest of Bea's birthday was more successful as the boys slept the entire journey home and there were more presents waiting for Bea on arrival. Each and every one she opened was deemed to be 'the best' which was a huge relief for me. There is so much pressure over getting their presents right that I am always massively relieved when they are all opened and the children are smiling. It is the closest I will ever get to an annual appraisal of my job. She was particularly pleased with the exorbitantly priced 'Cookie the dog', Baby Born Boy and a large toddler doll from Argos named Rosy. The Baby boy has since been named KJ after the two important males in her life - her father and Justin Beiber. I am already far too fond of both KJ and Rosy. This morning I asked her how they had slept (again) and she looked at me, sighed and said, 'Mum they aren't real'. I wish the children would play their games as well as I do. I got rather excited about changing KJ's nappies - he wees and does a sort of weak poo after you feed him some sloppy porridge mix - it is extremely fun. As I tried to rock him to sleep K and Bea decided things had gone too far and took him out of my arms.

Sunday was the day of the party and I had madly agreed to do a 'pamper party' this year. I hate doing them at home as it means an awful lot of work both before and after but it does at least mean that you can keep the numbers down. Last year we ended up with nearly 40 children by accident. Mercifully we were in a hall with the fabulous magician who was more than able to cope. This year was just eleven girls, three foot spas and a huge pile of tattoos and make up. I had roped in a lot of free help in the shape of another Godmother and her flatmate and my little sister and her best friend. They were amazing. Not only did they dive in and help with the pre-party organisation they also did a great job with the pamper part of the party. An hour in and all eleven girls had enjoyed a pedicure, manicure, face pack (my job - only two girls had allergic reactions and we manged to keep them away from the mirrors, put eczema cream over the red patches and convince them that the feeling of very tight skin was all part of the treatment), tattoo, make up and were proudly sporting a clip in, flashing hair piece. The party games afterwards took on a whole new dimension as the pass the parcel needed me to open each layer for them so that they didn't ruin their nails. The Godmother had been painstakingly sticking jewels on the nails as well as varnish so I was glad they were taking such pride in her handiwork.

Whilst the games were going on the chocolate fountain was being prepared in the kitchen. They are tricky things these sodding fountains. There is a perfect balance of oil and melted chocolate needed to produce a constant flow or 'wall' of chocolate and miserably this was not achieved in time for the party. Although oddly when K returned with the boys as the guests were leaving, he turned it off and then G turned it on again and the perfect wall of chocolate miraculously appeared. Little did we know we needed melted chocolate, oil and G to get it working perfectly. Luckily, none of the eleven girls had any previous experience of chocolate fountains and they were more than happy with the non-solid chocolate falling down the fountain. In fact I got quite shouty when their excitement got out of hand and as they sat down again Bea turned to her friend and said 'My mum is really strict'. It didn't sound like a positive. Still, they all left very happy and there was much talk of it being the best party ever so I was very pleased.  And very thankful to the two non-related helpers who had absolutely no reason to give up their Sunday afternoon to come and be bossed around by me and eleven small girls. At one point I turned around and the Godmother's friend had left without saying goodbye as she was late for her flight to Geneva for a business trip. I was gobsmacked. I am clearly far more selfish than I thought as there is no way in hell I would ever 'stop off' at a house in SE23 to paint nails, rub moisturiser into feet and try to get a chocolate fountain to make a 'wall' before I checked in at Heathrow. I cannot thank them enough.

When all guests had left and the children were in bed I started to prepare for my Monday morning WW meeting. I could really have done without it to be honest. I do hate to moan but I am REALLY not enjoying it as much as I thought I might. Admittedly the three hours of work on Monday morning is a darn sight easier than looking after Ted and it is very nice to have some time away from him on a regular basis but if I had had to pay for childcare I would have made £2.20 this week. As luck would have it, Ted's regular carer had put her back out so I had to rope in a friend at the last minute who would not accept payment which improved my profit margin no end, but even then, it isn't enough to make me want to carry on. Miserably I am such a wimp I shall no doubt carry on for several more months before I work up enough courage to tell everyone necessary that I want to give up. I do hate confrontation. And people being disappointed in me. Put the two together and it is very high up on my list of 'worst nightmares'.

Mercifully all the stress and worry is now over.  The wedding, birthday and party all went well and I did not collapse with exhaustion after lack of sleep for nights on end so I have been very jolly for the last twenty four hours. But it has all caught up with me now and I have been particularly tetchy this afternoon, particularly with Ted who has gone out of his way to irritate. I have also gone hell for leather in the kitchen and devoured almost everything in sight - including most of the cold pizza from the party (one girl could not believe I was serving cold pizza and asked me to take it back as she only liked it hot - there is no accounting for taste) and quite a lot of leftover chocolate fountain chocolate. I am particularly annoyed at this as the weekend of constant activity and stress meant that I had lost more weight and weighed in on Monday a mere two pounds from my goal weight. It made all the hard work totally worth it. I just need to take Ted to one more wedding and run around after him for six hours and I may well be at my goal weight for the first time in sixteen years. It is tantalisingly close now....

And now after all of this information and excitement I shall bid you good night so that you might rest and so might I. You will be relieved to know that this weekend is devoid of any excitement. Just a WW training day back in Bexleyheath Holiday Inn. Oh how I love hotels. JOY.

Seeya xx

Tuesday, 4 October 2011

TV time

Well hello.  How are we all?

I am enjoying an evening in front of the telly. K is out all night so I am in control of the Sky remote. Not having to wait for the Simpsons or Futurama to finish means that there is a lot more time in the evening to get my programmes watched - it's great.  I am currently LOVING a romcom (as far as I'm concerned there are no other films - I am a hopeless romantic) called Going the Distance. Thank goodness for Sky Movies. The only problem is I thought it was going to be fantastically awful but I'm already hooked - it's even better than The Proposal so I can't really focus on anything else. I'm meant to be doing work stuff as well but I can't be arsed. I'll keep rambling on to you instead.

I am getting through a lot of TV at the moment. The greatest thing about G being at school all day is that during Ted's sleep I am now able to make the most of Sky Plus.  The only problem is that the Sky box is in the living room which is at the front of the house with three windows facing the street. At first I made sure the blinds were closed so I could do my shameful and guilt ridden telly watching in private. Watching TV in the daytime is such a cliché, particularly as I'm usually eating chocolate at the time. Being an overweight housewife watching TV and eating chocolates in the middle of the day, I didn't want people walking past the house to judge me and mentally tut at such an obvious stereotype.  That was in the first week though, now I am totally brazen about it and open the blinds purposefully so that people can see me. I have been up from 6am, made packed lunches, done school runs, emptied the dishwasher, cleaned, wiped, shouted, cajoled, forced and hurried etc etc etc etc so I deserve a frigging lunch hour and if I want to watch Glee or Modern Family at 1 o'clock whilst eating weight watchers chocolate or Quality Street K left in the cupboard then they can just suck it up and get on with their day. I am liberated from my feelings of guilt and the idea that sitting down in the day is lazy. People who work at a desk sit down all day without feeling guilty - why should I feel guilty over an hour? So from now on I say let them look - they're probably just jealous as they're walking and I'm sitting. Plus there is a positive side to my telly watching, it puts me in a jolly mood. Modern Family is hi-larious and it puts me in a happy frame of mind for the afternoon pick up ordeal. That is obviously a benefit to the children, so actually, I'm just being an extra specially great mother. Who knew?

Daytime TV is a luxury and I am making the most of it while I can. Other luxuries are fleeting. The Cava has not lasted long. I am already one jar down on the Marmite and the exciting loo roll I brought back from Mums has run out. You are never going to believe this but it was loo roll WITH cashmere - not just 'the feel' of cashmere but actually 'enhanced with extracts of cashmere'. CAN you imagine. From Waitrose naturally. It is bad enough that whilst I am trudging around Asda and Lidl I do so in the full knowledge that the aisles in Waitrose are wide, welcoming and clean but now I also have to do it in the full knowledge that the customers in Waitrose are not only enjoying their shopping experience far more than me but that when they get home they are sitting in their comfortable, clean bathrooms and wiping their pampered arses with sodding cashmere loo roll. It is actually too much to take. This month is most definitely not an 'extract of cashmere' type of month and it is making me bitter and resentful. Although I do have my eye on that new health lottery. It's only 100k prize fund but I have won it and spent it many times in my head already. I am yet to buy a ticket though.

Oh, the weekend. Saturday was SHIT. Sunday was AMAZING. We went to Whitstable which was a Hell of a long way, especially with G asking 'if we were there yet' as we left SE23. But, it was totes (new word I'm trying out - I'm not sure if I'm 'Chelsea' enough to pull it off) worth it. We were in the sea for hours and I just kept saying, 'It's October, and we're all in the sea - in October!'. Even I got on my nerves. Monday was fabulous as a hangover from our happy moods on Sunday and then I woke up this morning feeling shattered and sorry for myself.  The day has most definitely improved since then right up until this evening when my 'spirited child' (fabulous term a parent from playgroup used today), Ted, threw most of the toy food from Bea's toy kitchen out of her bedroom window and into our front 'garden' (it's just a messy patch of land that technically belongs to the house but really only houses fox poo and the smelly bins with a few sad plants left over from the last owners - but there isn't a useful word for that so we'll make do with garden). Bea was a legend and ran down to pick them all up and put them back on her kitchen whilst I dealt with the lack of gas problem. I ran the bath this evening only to discover that there was no gas or emergency credit left and the bath was in fact freezing cold. Knowing that K was not coming home and that I was in my pyjamas already and so in no mood to run down to the shop and top up the meter, I came up with a genius plan to microwave water (the hob is gas too so I couldn't do saucepans) as well as using the kettle and I did eventually manage to provide a small puddle of luke warm water in time for them to get clean before bed. It was actually a lot easier then managing the usual bath time arguments over where they sit, toys, splashing, getting in, getting out, people's feet in other people's bottoms and other general bath time joys. I may run out of gas more often.

Right, the film has finished and so I can now go to bed with my belief in unrealistic happy endings blissfully reaffirmed. What would life be without Drew Barrymore and a romcom? Laters. x