Thursday, 23 February 2017

Bouncy castles and party bags

It's become more apparent in my life recently, that I'm not one for seeking other's advice and acting upon it.
To be honest, I find it slightly alien that some people can not make a decision regarding their own life without consulting everyone else first, and then basing their decision and action on the advice.
Surely you are the best person to decide your fate, to live your own life?
Of course I am flattered if someone does ask my opinion but it's often followed by, "You have to do what you feel comfortable with, what works for you."
And of course I wouldn't have the audacity to think I am an expert in every field, and not ask for advice from a professional, or an individual with the necessary knowledge, if required.
There are always exceptions to the rules.
However, I reached the conclusion a long time ago, that we are all leading different lives, with different personalities and different routines. Therefore, what works for one person could be totally unsuitable for the next.
Especially in relation to children.
I recall a friend once informing me, that she thought it imperative to join antenatal classes to bond with other soon to be mums, and then form relationships when the children are born to share experiences and concerns.
Guess what? I did not agree with this, or do this.
I'm not saying it's not a great idea for some, and I did join a couple of antenatal classes before birth day to find out from the experts what the hell I was letting myself in for.
But as for forming new relationship with expectant mothers, I knew that wasn't for me. I was fortunate that I had friends already in similar stages of life, friends I had known for years and already struggled to see on a regular basis. So I felt I wasn't really in a position to add new friends, maybe even to find out somewhere along the line that after sharing our birth stories, I realised I didn't actually like them very much! Plus, I am a great believer that you need to bond with your child in ways that work for you, whilst the NHS website and helpline are always on standby for the serious stuff.
As a mum, I can honestly say I've always tried my best and put Tommy first. Naturally, I've made mistakes on the way but that's life isn't it. You try things, you must learn from things if they don't work out, and you forever strive to succeed and lead a happy existence.
Kids parties are a very obvious place to view these different lives and personalities, which I am often reminded of. I've been thinking about this recently, due to the children's birthday parties we have been invited to.
I've looked around village halls and sports centres and noted the various types of mothers and their offspring.
There's the over protective mum, that's me I'm afraid, always worrying he's going to do something dangerous and hurt himself. The harassed mum, the one with lots of kids or maybe just one very boisterous one. The chilled mum, can be found sitting quietly in a corner sipping tea, looking suspiciously content. And the sociable one, the one who insists on walking around and introducing herself to everyone.
Not to mention the children.
The cautious one who clings to his mother's legs for at least the first fifteen minutes, that's Tommy by the way. The kid who bursts into tears at every five minute intervals, life can be tough for them and their parents. The angry kid who's loosing their rag at every opportunity, stamping feet and banging fists. Then there's the naughty kid, to be avoided if possible, for he's poking and pushing other children and tempting them with his wild ways. And last but definitely not least, the impeccably well behaved child (a very rare species) who is the envy of all the mums.
Funny old lot, aren't we.
Still, as my mum often says, wouldn't it be a boring world if we were all the same?

I shall leave you with some pictures of recent, non boring, kids parties.

Friday, 10 February 2017

Food for the soul

It didn't work.
(In reference to my last post.)
I went to bed in the usual manner; I set the time on my mobile alarm but noted it didn't have a 'required month you wish to wake in', and then promptly fell asleep.
Alas, I did not have a deep and meaningful sleep until March.
I tossed and turned, I had weird small dreams, and stirred many times.
Until my alarm signaled the beginning of another day. But it wasn't the correct day.
It was still bleak February!
So cold that I did not actually want to leave my bed.
An entirely dark bedroom which matched my mood.
And the germs! The germs were still there, without fail I fall ill in January and the germs stick round for far too long.
I gloomily realised it was time for action!
If I couldn't hibernate until Spring, I had to do something else.
It was treat time.
Who doesn't love a treat? That's what I figured mid-treats, therefore I also treated my mum.
I am a firm believer, treats are food for the soul. They don't even have to be big, just little things like Cadbury's Mini Eggs on a long train journey.
I was fortunate enough to receive a voucher from work, recognition of hard work achieving and contributing to the 35 published books target.
It was time to check in on Amazon.
Usually any spare money is spent on Tommy and the home. As my mum constantly reminds me, you need to treat yourself. So I did. My voucher was well spent on new boots (love my cowboy boots but they have holes in the soles, wet feet are not ideal), new going out dress (girls night out soon and I realised I can't wear the black spotty dress I've worn for the past four years) and a new work dress (could also be worn at weekends, how versatile) and a new soap dish and a glass bottle for my olive oil (old habits die hard).
It felt good.
Then I felt the urge to treat another human being. One who treats my son, myself and husband a fair bit - my mum. I ordered my mum a treatbox.
There's a fabulous website I stumbled across, you pick your gifts and they wrap them, place in box, write a label for you, and post them.
I happened to be at my mums when her treatbox arrived.
"I've got a treatbox!" she exclaimed.
She carefully unwrapped her box to reveal a chocolate teddy bear, a posh tea bag, a white heart with the word 'nanny', a coaster with the words 'always my mum, forever my friend' and little pegs decorated with cupcakes and flowers.
My work was done.
I was feeling tonnes better.
Oh and Mark and I bought a new car.
February, you are nicer than I anticipated.

Wednesday, 1 February 2017

Is it time to wake up yet?

I have this theory with regards to my arch enemy, January, and its partner in crime, February.
My thought process for this theory is as follows.
After the dizzy highs of Christmas, and consuming the last drop of New Year's Eve bubbly, I will surrender to New Year's Day junk food - I'm thinking McDonalds breakfast, cheese on toast lunch, a huge bar of chocolate and mint chic chip ice cream snack, finishing nicely with an Indian takeaway. Then I will loose myself in a gigantic bubble bath, before retiring to my freshly laundered bed, and have a lovely, long sleep. At least until March.
Bears do it, so why can't I? Not the bubble bath bit, or ordering an Indian takeaway come to think of it, I mean the long sleeping bit.
All those lovely dreams I would have. And how refreshed I would feel when I awoke!
I would avoid all that grey, dreary, drizzly, frosty weather. No more rising in the dark and leaving work in the dark. Not to mention all the money I would save. For in my fantasy world I would still be paid by my employer, despite actually being asleep.
Would I also sleep away my excess Christmas calories? I like to think so.
Yes I would wake up in March, far thinner than January's bedtime. Next I would stretch, and remark, "Goodness, that was a terrific sleep."
The sun would be streaming through the bedroom window and I would peer through the blinds and admire the turquoise sky and cherry blossom. The daffodils would be sprouting around the trees and the birds would be singing their morning chorus.
Bliss.
I think the great, long, sleep should be an optional choice from the government. Because I understand this would not suit everyone. But I do think it would suit myself, and Mark and Tommy would join me too. That way I wouldn't feel as if I had missed anything which my husband and child experienced, whilst I was in dream land.
Please note, I have just checked the bear fact, and according to Google they can hibernate for up to seven and a half months.
Crikey, I'm not that greedy. I wouldn't want to miss Spring, merely January and February please.
Anyone else care to join me?

Whilst you are pondering over this dilemma, I shall leave you with some New Year's Eve memories from party at friend's house.

Mark. Not his best picture, granted.


Tommy playing with a princess.


My friends. What a lovely looking bunch they are.