Category Archives: parenting

A trio of tummy flutters …

It’s almost upon me !

That child free holiday with the current crush….

A few days of theatre and culture and GnTs and no one needing me for anything. A time to just be me . Kelly. The woman who adores the theatre, who loves chattering and visiting new places . I don’t get to be her very often.

Mostly I am mum. The one who nags about pots being brought out of teens rooms and spends way too long of each day deciding what we are going to eat . I love being mum I do. I haven’t always but these days I do. It’s nice to have that little break though isn’t it . *Wankery term coming up klaxon* It’s nice to have sometime to reconnect (told you) with yourself and remember who you are aside from mum .

So here I am , case almost packed . Spending way too long choosing what outfits to take and here they come . The trio of tummy flutters . All with their own individual twist.

Tummy Flutter number 1 – mum guilt

The big bad mum guilt. How bloody annoying is it ?? There’s just that unease in the pit of my stomach , telling me what kind of mum ditches her kids to go away with her fancy piece ?? That I’m not going to see the kids at all for ten whole days because of plans I’ve made.

Logical brain kind of covers for me here because small girl is away with daddy for a fortnight anyway. Whether I was here or not I’d not have seen her . As for the elder 3 well I’ve barely seen them these hols anyway as they’re all busy with friends and social lives and work.

There’s no need at all for me to feel bad but yet there it lingers … I’m not going to pay it the attention it wants though , not this time.

Tummy Flutter number 2 – anxiety

That feeling when your tummy drops because you’ve forgotten to do something really important.

My mental health these days is a pretty stable , predictable thing. Anxiety is always hovering around on the outskirts of my consciousness. Doesn’t impose too often but occasionally just knocks on the door of my brain to remind me it’s still there . Anything that needs planning and organisation is always going to roll out the red carpet for my anxiety. It’ll be stood there saying “go on then , balls this up? I’m waiting!! You know you are rubbish at plans ”

I’ve got to be on a super early train for my trip . I’m worried I’ll sleep in. I’m worried I’ll miss the bus to the train station. I’m worried I’ll forget my tickets , get the wrong train .

That I’ve messed up the dates , that anxiety will decide to show up in its strongest form whilst I’m hanging out with someone I really like.

Thing is , these are all legitimate concerns and ones I can do something about. I can cope with this kind of anxiety. The kind when all of a sudden I convince myself I’m going to faint in Sainsbury’s , triggered by nothing that’s an absolute pain. This kind though with at least a couple of toes dipped in reality I can cope with. I can set 3 alarms , double check bus times and dates and pack tickets.

I can beat this kind of anxiety.

Tummy Flutter number 3- crushing

Though the nicest of all the tummy flutters by far the most excruciatingly embarrassing and kinda pathetic.

Oh I am crushing like a teen with the anticipation of our hols. I am grinning like a loon at each message , tummy flipping reading how exciting he is too , daydreaming of all the great things we can do.

This is so unlike me. I am Kelly , Ice Queen , the girl who simply does not get giddy over boys. Never have …thank you universe for hitting me with a teenage crush at almost 40 most decent of you!!

Ah….hurry up hols , I am ready !!

Musings Of A Tired Mummy
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5 tips for dating someone with anxiety

When I’m anxious , it’s horrible for me . Noone wants to feel like their breathing is so uncontrollable they might just pass out . Noone enjoys that horrible feeling of a thousand thoughts , most of them negative whizzing around their brain at a dizzying pace. It’s a horrible debilitating condition .

Not just for me going through it either . When anxious the kids get irritable mum , the one who is so sensitive to noise sssshhh is out of her mouth way more often that it should be. Friends and people around me get distracted me , the one who is going to need telling again when she is feeling better exactly what you told me just now because I’m nodding and trying so hard to listen but I just can’t take it on board.

So then imagine dating me ?

Obviously when anxiety is nowhere to be found I am a delight!!All sparkling conversation and wit and charm……or something….

During an anxious period , not so much! I can’t be the only one , so if you’re dating someone who suffers with anxiety there might be some tips here for you. Obviously everyone is different and I can only speak for myself but here goes .

I will cancel on you

This is likely nothing to do with you.

When anxiety strikes people are tricky. Even people I really,really like are a struggle. Now if I’m dating you I really really really like you as not many get that far. So I’ll try really hard to just push through. Only added to the people phobia is that voice. The anxiety voice telling me he doesn’t want to go out with me anyway , why would he ? I’m dull I’m boring I’m just an anxious drain , in fact he’s probably only involved with me because he feels sorry for me.

Regular me knows all that to be anxiety fuelled nonsense. Anxiety ridden me knows FOR SURE that this is the truth.

So I’ll probably cancel. Get under my duvet and spend a few hours worrying about if you’ll ever want to see me again with me being such a pathetic flake.

Anxiety is exhausting.

Prepare yourself for contradiction

Again can only tell my story , but during an anxious bout I want to be left alone . I don’t want chat or touching or made to talk about how I feel. Except….ALL I want is company of someone I trust and touching and holding and reassuring words.

Goodness knows what chances another person has of getting it right when I have no clue myself.

Sometimes silence is key

When anxious I become so oversensitive to noise . People talking normally will really get to me as it feels too overwhelming. I’m already exhausted because as detailed above having 3 million thoughts a minute wears you out . So sometimes I’m going to just need to lay under a blanket with you , no words, no small talk just silence and knowing you’re there will calm me.

You may get dumped

In my case you’ll certainly get dumped. I’ll decide that there’s no point continuing with this . Tell you to go find someone ‘normal’. Even if I really like you , especially if I really like you . How on earth could I expect anyone to put up with this anxious mess on a regular basis?

Truth is , I’m just giving you an out . I know I can be hard work when anxiety strikes . Especially if I’ve not mentioned I’m feeling anxious and you just think I’m going off on one because I’ve gone off you. So I’d understand if you can’t deal. I’m really hoping you won’t take that out though , I’m hoping you’re going to ride this out with me . It takes a special kind of a person to do that though so if that’s not you best you do run for the hills.

Once you learn the cheat codes it’s so much easier

You know the old fashioned games consoles where if you knew the cheat codes you could get never ending lives or some bonus. Well it’s kind of the same with people.

My anxiety is pretty predictable , it creeps up gently , gives me a rough couple of days then fades again. My reaction to it is equally predictable. I get a bit needy , I look for constant reassurance . If you can recognise the signs that I’m having an anxious day and even better then know how to comfort me then we’ll be just fine. I was once having a particularly bad anxious day ,all self loathing and horrid so employing the ‘lets just finish this’ technique detailed above. The (correct) response from the (lucky?!) guy in question was to suggest a duvet and a nap , and if I still wanted to dump him later that’d be fine!! Mr Smarty Pants was obviously right to my surprise and when questioned how he knew I was just anxious answered “I just know your anxiety cheat codes by now”

Caring about someone with anxiety can be tough , as I for one struggle to verbalise my feelings and so therefore my behaviour can seem odd. Anxiety makes me irritable and full of doubt and self loathing . It makes me exhausted and lethargic and drains me of energy. It can make huge changes to my personality ,it makes me needy and I bloody hate feeling like that. I’m a strong independent woman not that one under a duvet asking for her hair played with.That must be a lot to deal with.

It takes someone special to be the reassuring voice without getting frustrated by the need for it .

Someone special to invest in knowing me well enough to know that stroking my hair and shhhhh ing me like a baby can help when an anxiety attack strikes.

To be patient and to care about me when I don’t much care about myself.

Anxiety is not a constant in my life though , I’m lucky these days it’s just a rare visitor. So if you can put up with the occasional rough day it’s so worth it for all the sparkling conversation and wit and charm I told you about at the beginning….and I make an awesome pie !!I’m a catch , honestly!!

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Tammymum
Mission Mindfulness

The Pramshed

Small girl – we need you!

This Easter weekend has been a little different this year. Often the teens are away at grandparents that weekend and it’s often just small girl and I home.

This year was the opposite , 3 teens and I were home and NO small girl , who was chocolate egg -ing it up with daddy.

I’ve got to admit , I realised then we need her around to keep us on track. Without her to entertain and have fun with we all go a bit feral and very lazy. 

Good Friday usually marks the beginning of the Easter holidays. With small girl around we generally put Hop on (that film is so underrated ,we bloody love it !) grab the popcorn and begin the holidays!!!

This year , without small girl to oversee proceedings we went off plan. 

You know I’m from Hull??(what?no I don’t go on about it ALL the time!!!) Well Good Friday in Hull means one thing – rugby ! Specifically the Hull rugby derby. Hull v Hull!!!! Now to do this properly you really have to be there , but as we live near Manchester now heading to the pub to watch was the next best option , so off glorious first born and I went 

We had great fun watching the rugby (we won we won we won!!!)  Came home ate a ton of snacks none of which nutritious then watch a whole heap of trash TV. It was fab!!

Easter Saturday with small girl would usually involve a bake athon. She loves her baking and cooking and usually weeks before special Easter cupcake toppers are bought , bunny cookie cutters are sourced and baking happens !!

Now this year without her , no sweet treats were made . Eldest went out so it was just the 15 and 16 year old and I . Now I don’t want you to think that all I ever do is take my children to the pub….BUT there happened to be another sporting event and THE only activity teen boy the younger had expressed an interest in doing. He currently has a broken wrist so somewhat limited . Hull City were on Sky !! Excitedly we went off to watch our match. Until we got there. There was another match on at the same time and this one had a Manchester team playing! We didn’t stand a chance of getting to see our match. Ever the adaptable ones we decided to stay and have dinner . I am winning no Instagram awards for perfect Easter parenting here.

So we get to Easter Sunday. Small girl is our little Masterchef. Her roast dinners are just lovely and I am very envious this 10 year old Manc girl can make better Yorkshire puddings than her actual Yorkshire mother!!!

She’s not here though – anyone fancy roast dinner? i could make a pie? Casserole maybe ? Lamb?

A request for sausages goes up and is emphatically agreed all round . Sigh….

Small girl is back today . We need her . We just get way too slothlike while she’s away. I am looking forward to making our own chocolate eggs (although she did tell me my Hobbycraft moulds are unlikely to work as it means tempering?!?! chocolate which is tricky!) I am looking forward to crafts and watching Hop and sharing chocolate and she has even mentioned she quite fancies making roast beef!!!

Ah hurry home small girl, your family need you !!!

It’s not just ‘the school run ‘….

I moan about the school run , quite a lot.

I moan we live so far from school when there’s a lovely one virtually in our back yard . When we first came here I started the big ones there and everyone settled so well I couldn’t stand to move them when we began to live further away. So for 10 years almost we’ve been getting the train , then doing the 20 minute walk to school. In the winter I really moan. When the train is crowded or late or cancelled I grumble .

The last few weeks though ,there’s been a realisation that time is ticking on our school run together. One day it’ll no longer be part of our routine .

You see I realise that the school run isn’t ‘just ‘ the school run.

It’s the only time of day that it’s just me and small girl and she has my total undivided attention.A rarity with 3 siblings.

It’s the time of day she leaps and twirls ands bounds with total abandonment , a freedom she has that she is oblivion what anyone else around her may think of the girl dancing her way to school.

It’s the time she practices being other animals ‘just in case ‘ We read AniMalcolm recently , I blame that.

It’s the time we make plans for the next day , or week or school holidays.

It’s the time she invents recipes to make when she gets home.

It’s the time she fills me in on what she’s been up to at daddy’s when she’s away from me .

It’s the time she tells me if she’s fallen out with friends and is feeling lonely or upset.

It’s the time I tell her stories about when I was at primary school.

It’s the time we sometimes hold hands ,something which has become less and less something we do.
It’s the time she loves her current book so much she’s reading on the train , stood up on the train platform she’s so engrossed and I giggle at my cute little bookworm

It’s the time we discuss our disagreements when mummy has been snappy mummy during the morning chaos when she’s asked a dozen times to “please put on your tights”

It’s the time we then hug out those disagreements and I buy guilt pain au chocolates …..what a sucker !

It’s the time that not only does she have my full attention but I have hers and that’s such a precious gift.

I’m going to stop whining about the school (or try certainly) and be grateful for those moments that start and end her school day. That we enjoy one another company and have conversations that I am certain I would not have with any other person in the world.

The clock is ticking .

1 year and  and counting…

Then there’ll be no school run , no sneaky hugs and random school run chats .

I’m going to miss them.

 

I’m taking part in the Mummy Monday linky with Becca from Becca Blogs It Out

3 Little Buttons
JakiJellz

One Messy Mama

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Mission Mindfulness

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If Mother’s Day makes you miserable…

Mother’s Day for me is as much as a downer as Valentines Day , and that is saying something.

 

 

I don’t have a mum. She died almost 19 years ago. Before I was really a grown up , before I was a mum myself . I haven’t had a mum for a long time and I’m no longer grief stricken in that all encompassing , consuming way that fresh bereavement brings with it. I don’t have parents , that’s been part of my life for a very long time. I don’t weep everytime I think of it or flinch from talking about them.

 

 

Mother’s Day though that always feel like a bit of a stomach punch for me . It hits hard and it hurts and it lingers . I think it’s because it is everywhere. I have had emails everyday for about 3 weeks telling me to treat mum , buy her something special. TV ads are there too telling me to spoil my mum , get her a cute personalised card , take her out for dinner. Well you know what advertisers ? I’d love to. I’d be delighted to be able to take my mam out for dinner somewhere fancy , I never ever got to do that you see. I’d only just finished my A levels when my mum died . I wish with all my might that tomorrow we could do a lovely Sunday lunch , my mam and my children , my sister and hers . I wish we could have one of those days the advertisers are shoving down our throats. I wish I could spoil her – only present I can remember getting her was a pack of dusters when I was about 7 because she’d been saying she needed new ones ( I’d like to think that my gift giving skills have improved since then)

 

 

Mother’s Day without a mum sucks , I’ve seen a few other people mention they feel the same over the past week or so on social media . I suppose it’s just because we are bombarded with what we are missing . Highlights the hole in your life.

 

 

 

It’s not just the lack of a mum that gives me the Mothers Day angst.

 

 

I’m a single mum too , again I have been for a long while . There is no other adult here to give me a well done or make me feel special and that’s a bit of a niggle too. The kids will ( I hope ) have made cards and small girl’s daddy will have gotten a gift for them to give me and we’ll have a lovely tea and possibly a Mothers Day disco if we’re feeling that way inclined . It just all leaves me really flat and exhausted. A total fake of a day. That in itself makes me feel guilty , surely Mother’s Day should be spent dwelling on how bloody lucky I am to have these 4 amazing nutcases in my life. Instead I’ll be feigning happiness and joy that simply is stripped away from me on Mothers Day. I know that feeling this way stems from the toxic relationship I was in when I was first a mum and for the years after. Some of you may unfortunately know that big days and events that aren’t focussed on the perpetrator in those kind of relationships can be horrific. Kids birthdays , Christmasses well they were volatile enough but Mother’s Day ???Whole other level. You may be showered with expensive gifts in front of people to have them smashed to bits when you’re alone or you could be told that you’re too much of a shit mum to get a card on Mother’s Day . You don’t deserve it .

I think this is one of my few remaining hang ups left over from those times . Maybe I’d have conquered it with setting our own traditions and taking back Mothers Day like I have so much other stuff but the thing with it is I already feel like the wind has been taken out of my sails with not having a mum and I don’t really have the energy to fight THIS added problem that kills Mother’s Day stone dead for me .

 

 

I didn’t intend to make all this about me honestly. As I say often my blog is therapeutic and getting thoughts out of my head into words on a page really helps me understand myself and my thinking better. I don’t resent other people having the worlds best day I feel obliged to say . I love seeing the happy pics on social media of mums with their feet up , having breakfast in bed . I love to see amazing mums thanked and celebrated , they bloody deserve it ! Tell me stories of your mums and how they are absolute rocks ! I don’t scroll through social media cursing those celebrating the day I promise ( possibly DO do that on Valentine’s Day)

 

 

 

 

There are many of us though, for whom Mother’s Day is painful .

There are a multitude of reasons why .

It could be that you’re not a mum when that’s all you want in the world , that must be almost unbearably hard.

Maybe you’ve lost a child , that would be a traumatic thing to deal with on a day celebrating mothers. I can offer no words of comfort there because I’m almost sure there are none.

Maybe you have an ill child , are ill yourself , have an ill mum and are dealing with just try to get through a day.

Maybe Mother’s Day triggers poor mental health , I’ve certainly been feeling as though an anxiety flare up could be on the horizon.

Maybe you are in an abusive relationship. Forcedly estranged from your mum and other family , feeling so alone and trapped . Told what a terrible mother and person you are , that you’re pathetic and useless , that your kids would be better off in care than with you. To you women let me just say this , you are outstanding , you are doing an amazing job in intolerable circumstances and you deserve to be free. You are worthy of love and of kindness , you are worthy of being supported and empowered not kept down and silenced . When the day comes that you are able to leave , all these things will find their way to you because it’s no less than you deserve.

 

Maybe you don’t have your children with you this mother’s day for one reason or another and there is a painful void .

 

 

I don’t have the answers on how to make this day more tolerable , bloody hell I’m here writing a blog post that is basically one long whinge.

 

 

All I can offer is that Mother’s Day is just one day . That’s my mantra . Just one day . The next day will be better , less pressured . Surround yourself with people who lessen your pain if you at all possibly can. Fill your own little world with people who make you feel better , even if that just means spending time alone. Me ? I will be having a day with these awesome individuals that make me realise that even the shittiest days can be tolerated. I’ll also be tossing about on social media as per usual so if anyone wants to chat I’ll be around . Whether that’s because you are struggling or you just want a distraction and fancy chatting about trash tv I am your girl ( The seven year switch eh??….looks to be a cracker!! How about Richard from married at first sight??….sorry I digress…)

 

See you on the other side!!

 

 

 

 

My Facebook page is here

The teens have got this

Teenagers get a bad press. 

Have had since the dawn of time. 

Thugs , hooded louts who roam the streets terrorising us in their packs, off their faces on legal highs???

I don’t recognise those ones though . I’m the mum of 3 teenagers and I’m offended on their behalves by lazy stereotypes and negativity. Course there will be horrid teens ….but there are horrid people my age too but I don’t think I can be judged by their behaviours! I’m a single mum so pigeon holes rub me up the wrong way as it is but I certainly think our teenagers deserve much more credit.

Over the past few weeks I’ve seen a wave of teen activism which is way more familiar to me as the kind of teenagers I know . The bravery of young women speaking out against sexual harassment as part of the #metoo movement. Reclaim the Night here in Manchester hugely driven by the Student Union. These I can identify with as the work of teenagers rather than those anti social grunters , succumbing to rickets due to lack of daylight and screen addiction (though even I had to admit to being at least on nodding terms with those guys too on occasion!)

On the wake of yet another school shooting in the US we have seen a group of people rise. To take on the NRA and the gun entitled of America. A group of people so very passionate about protecting kids in school. A group not wanting to fight gun crime with more guns but less.

This group are not the parents of children fighting to keep them safe , not the grandparents saying enough is enough , too many children have gone to school never to come home. This group , being loud , being vocal , being heard are the kids themselves . The ones who have seen their friends gunned down ,who have been wounded themselves.

Emma Gonzalez has become the face of these people. An intelligent , articulate,passionate  young woman  . Watching her speech gave me hope ,it’s here if you missed it.

This woman is taking on a president who wants to arm teachers , she’s taking on a mindset that puts the right to own a gun over the right for people not to be shot. The movement “We call BS” is formed and these young people want to be heard.

They’re belittled of course , you can’t stop these shootings .You’ll never see gun control in the US , hush with the youthful optimism and just accept the status quo.

Thankfully they’re not listening .

Femi Oluwole is a UK activist , co founder of the ‘Our future , Our choice ‘ movement. An anti Brexit group passionate about the fact that young people voted heavily to remain , the thinking behind the campaign being that in the 20 , 30 years it’ll take to fully see Brexit , make our own laws ,secure trade deals that Brexit will no longer represent the will of the people.

I won’t get into the argument behind this or Brexit at all here . What does make me happy is young people sticking their head above the parapet and demanding to be listened to.

Teenagers are hushed often , told their views are invalid as they don’t know much. The young people in America standing up against the NRA have been mocked , have been accused of being actors in a bid to silence them . Femi Oluwole has been shouted down by middle aged presenters who are supposedly interviewing him. I just hear a big hush , a ‘sit down and shut up ‘ when young people articulate themselves.

The thing is though. You can’t silence young people in 2018. Our teenagers use social media like we do oxygen. They can mobilise an army of like minded individuals with one tweet. They can and they will make themselves heard and I for one want to listen. I want to hear their thoughts on their futures , I want passionate people involved in the shaping of our world. We , as older people , expect to be listened to simply because we’ve been on the planet longer. Though looking at it from a young person’s eyes we picked Trump , we voted Brexit based on a promise on a bus , we haven’t stood up and spoken out. No wonder they are frustrated.

I saw a tweet from Barack Obama in the wake of the Florida shooting which resonated with me 

Teens – we’ve got your backs .
You’ve got this.


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Two Tiny Hands

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Not Just the 3 of Us

The sweetest sixteen…

Once upon a time there was a baby. 

He was ever so beautiful , ever so cuddly and ever so hungry. His favourite hobbies were waking up every hour to be fed , cuddles , soft fleecy blankets ,being held and the occasional nap between meals. He had a big brother who loved to slobber all over him (kiss him he would say) and show him off like he was the crown jewels.The baby had little choice in this whole ‘brother’ thing bit he never seemed to mind too much .

The baby grew bigger , unsurprisingly given his milk intake and discovered food was a thing. It was a revelation !! It got better than milk!!! I mean porridge – whoever invented that bad boy was a genius according to our baby!

He carried on growing,much like the story of the Very Hungry Caterpillar only instead of becoming a beautiful butterfly he became the world’s cutest toddler ! Seriously I only have to think of his blonde hair and huge eyes and my womb starts having funny ideas. He was a bit clumsy and fell over his own feet a lot . His mummy just assumed that was genetic as she did too….turned out years and years of doctors and A and E trips and podiatrist appointments down the line he had a bend in a bone in his leg that noone picked up on and that’s why he fell. His mummy felt pretty bad about that but wondered if she could get in on some of this bent leg action to account for her clumsiness. 

Our world’s cutest toddler also struggled with his speech a bit. Again his mummy would insist to anyone who dare mention this that she could understand him as could his auntie and grandma so if you couldn’t that’s your problem. Much to mummy’s dismay a speech therapist fixed our hero and ‘doos’ became shoes and ‘nunny’ became dummy and mummy cursed that speech therapist as his mispronunciation was just adorable .

Pre schooler boy loved collecting. Really loved collecting. Wooden Thomas trains , Bob the Builder toys , Engie Benjy vehicles! What do you mean what’s Engie Benjy??It was kind of a Bob rival but voiced by Ant and Dec , it was pretty cool!! He’d spend hours racing these toys all separated into teams and leagues . He’d never grow out of liking a good league . 

Seriously I could just squish that little face !!!




He also loved setting ridiculous challenges for the adults in his life requesting green dummies and elephant shaped biscuits and other bizarre items. The grown ups in his life of course would take on these challenges because if you succeeded you’d be his hero!!

Through primary school at some point our boy discovered football . His elder brother had always been a sports nut but younger boy wasn’t keen. Until he was obsessed ….a character trait from his mum being he is either obsessed by something or has zero interest. We don’t really do in between. The boy breathes football. He has his precious Hull City and beloved Stockport County but it goes deeper than that. One night he and I sat and he was looking at obscure Greek football tables and results for hours .

He also became an author ! His Dusty Rusty series were a triumph! Well we all thought so anyway, I can still imagine they’ll be published one day!

The dreaded teen years came …. but they were …well great actually!!! When you’ve had 3 babies under 3 – teenagers who can feed themselves and toilet alone bring not a lot to fear really. 

He also bloody loves an evening with a rom com

So today that hungry ,cute,  cuddly baby is now – well a hungry, cute ,  cuddly 16 year old actually. An amazing young man who thinks a lot and questions a lot. Who is creative and thoughtful and kind and caring. Who would still wake to eat hourly if he could get away with it . Who does the best Garth Crooks impression and who is going to go on Pointless with me as his knowledge is pretty widespread and impressive. Whose personality I can see reflecting back at me like a mirror which is weird . …and frustrating as hell should we disagree and both dig our heels in as far as they can possibly go!!

Happy Birthday gorgeous one ! I’m so lucky to get to be the one you call mum , you’re a delight and I am so proud of the person you are . I can’t wait to watch you change the world in your own thoughtful , considered way . The universe is made infinitely better by having you in it!
Xxxxx

JakiJellz

After The Playground

Reflectionsfromme

Burnished Chaos

         



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Sometimes it’s hard to be a woman – a rant

Its been quite the week for female rants in our house . Quite a collaboration too , all 3 of us females here have each had a whinge about one thing or another .

Share you say ? Unburden yourselves ?

Dont mind if we do….

Earlier in the week teen girl came home with a touch of the outrage about her. This is nothing unusual but this time she had something pretty meaty to get her teeth into. 
An initiative in school had been launched to encourage more elder girls back into sport and exercise . Teen girl is the sporty type and was happy to have something new to try. However …this initiative Fit for Prom was a lunchtime fitness class for elder girls a brilliant idea with an awful name and message. Teen girl and her friends found the Fit for Prom message to be nothing more than a dangerous message that actually if you weren’t slender , toned and ‘fit’  then you shouldn’t really be going to prom. It gives me hope that this group of girls saw fit to take it up with the teacher.
Thankfully the girls PE teacher agreed with them wholeheartedly and said she felt uncomfortable with it too! Apparently this initiative was funded to allow school to put on these extra fitness class. They agreed to keep the funding ,drop the name and keep the class. Worryingly when researching Fit For Prom I found hundreds of articles on how to lose weight quick for Prom , how to tone up for your dress (all aimed at girls of course the boys just need to show up) 

I’m all for encouraging teen girls into sport but using the kind of body shaming that stops them participating in the first place is beneficial to no one.

So….we’ve dealt with this best we can. 

Then comes….lady Doritos….

*Sigh , tut, eye roll , bang head against wall*

If you missed it there was much talk of a new kind of dorito being launched , just for us ladies. Handbag size bags , they wouldn’t crunch loudly or leave ‘dorito dust’ on your hands . Us feminine ladies do not like crunchy crisps or licking our fingers don’t you know!!!

As you can imagine this went down a storm in our house. 

Me : Bloody patriarchy trying to literally silence us.

Teen Girl : Well I’ll just get crunchy ones and crunch triply loud.

Small girl : Licking your fingers is the BEST bit!!!

We don’t want lady Doritos here!

It transpired that these were not going to become a thing , everyone involved denied all knowledge and it was all a big misunderstanding (of course) I’ve read maybe it was a publicity stunt ,get us girls talking about Doritos. I’ll not be getting them again.

Sigh…..let’s see what this week brings in the way of female rants…

PS Dear Doritos,

If you really want to improve your product I’ve a few suggestions:

a) Make it so your razor sharp edges don’t dig right in your gums.

b) Add a slight curve to aid salsa dipping

c) Ditch the BBQ rib flavour

d) Don’t big yourself up with your noisy crunch. Wheat Crunchies blow you out of the water.

Thanks , a lady x


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One Messy Mama






Show yourself the love this Valentine’s…

I admit I dislike Valentine’s Day. 

However I do really like the idea of love and romance ,of thoughtfulness and little gifts and letting other people know we’re quite fond of them! 

So rather than sit like the Grinch of Valentine’s I’m going to go for “If you can’t beat them join them” school of thought this year. Let’s hijack this celebration and use for a whole lot of self love.

Here’s a few ideas of Valentine’s treats you can spoil  yourself with.

Have half an hour with a book



Have someone else cook dinner
Be that a partner , children that are old enough or the lovely chef at the local takeaway.

Have a bath , in peace 

Take a magazine , soak in bubbles alone.

Watch an old favourite movie

Probably when the kids are in bed.

Get in touch with someone who makes you smile



Practice gratitude 

Make a list of things you are grateful for today.

Buy someone a little gift , just because.

Finding the perfect little gift for someone I care about is instant happiness for me!

Organise a night out with old friends



Buy yourself something you want not need

Even if it’s just an old copy of a favourite book from the charity shop.

Tell someone how fab you think they are 

I did this recently it’s here if you want inspiration!

I know for some of you with little kids some of these ideas will sound like the stuff of fantasy. “A bath in peace ?” Is this woman batshit crazy I hear you cry! I know. I empathise. I remember. 

You may have to tweak my suggestions a little! Bloody hell I may have to tweak my suggestions a little – a 3 teen household with also a 9yr old Lush addict and I’m banking on a long soak in the bath ? Maybe I am batshit crazy!

Do something nice for yourself this Valentine’s. If you’re loved up and happy then enjoy being spoilt by another grown up with likely better suggestions than mine – enjoy!!

If you’re the single type just think back to Valentine’s past and be grateful you don’t have to go through someone presenting you with the world’s most garish underwear (wrong size obvs ) and assuming this means their luck is in tonight ! 

Enjoy love week , I personally think Valentine’s should end at Primary school when the handmade cards and question marks do……although I could do a V day turnaround if handmade cards and question marks made a comeback!!! 

Take note Mr Perfect
Xxx

 


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Burnished Chaos

Things I learned from my sickbed….

We’ve been ill for weeks small girl and I.

You’ve probably heard me whinging about it all over social media. 

We’ve had this flu like bug that’s been around and it has been grim. It’s a particularly yukky bug which wipes you out , makes you feel like crap and just when you think you’re getting better…zap! Back to square one…

Anyway during this fortnight of  coughing and snot and fevers and aches and pains I believe I actually have learnt a thing or two ,ever looking for the silver linings…

YouTube is a handy nurse

Yes small girl was bored not being in school and her favourite pastime of cooking and baking was out as let’s face it who wants to eat food prepared by Slimer?!

So YouTube came into its own. She was kept quiet watching her nutty videos and even more amazing I discovered some of her youtubers voices are really soothing. I mean most of them are crazily annoying but when we’ve slouched on the sofa under a duvet as she’s watching them one or two of their voices did have me dozing off!!!

Feeding a cold just makes it more hungry

What’s the phrase feed a cold and starve a fever?? Something like that anyway. Turns out when small girl is ill , no-one tells her appetite. She ate ….and ate….and ate. You know the children’s story The Very Hungry Caterpillar? That was small girl. 

I was forcing down soup and veg and super spicy curry to try and shift the cold,but it was a real effort. Small girl was behaving as though she was on Man V Food…. and she definitely emerged victorious!!

She has a great taste in books

We read together every night at bedtime but while ill we snuggled and read together some more. We’re almost finished The Person Controller by David Baddie. It is such a great book. We read Animalcolm not long back and really loved that too! So much I have got us tickets for the theatre show for her birthday (sssshhh don’t tell) She likes a funny book with great characters and an enthralling story and it seems I do too!

Eucalyptus is our bff

Olbas oil in the bath , Vicks on our feet ,oil on the radiator. Even our next door neighbours must be breathing better!

The elder 3 are very nearly great carers

They did try to look after us ,they really did. They were on hand with water and asking how we were and teen girl was basically small girl’s hot chocolate servant. 

I’d highly recommend the teens as a nursing staff……well….as long as you don’t mind folk taking the piss out of the fact your voice has gone missing , repeating your ‘I don’t get ill ‘ boast to you and that you can cope with people hushing your coughing  and referring to you not as mum but as Wheezy,from Toy Story then it’s all fun and games!!!

Being well rocks!!

Obvious one this but nothing like being wiped out for a few weeks to make you promise yourself you’ll be so grateful when you recover!! How I’ll eat superfoods to boost this immune system of mine , I’ll probably go for a run or two – healthy body always good right??
Let’s not kid ourselves though , the perfect end of illness treat is eating all the junk you had no desire for whilst sick and lying on the sofa watching crap TV. You’ve gotta conserve your energy after all!!

I’m just hoping we’re done with bugs,coughs and colds for a little while now!! January was not fun , let’s do better February please!



Burnished Chaos


Me, Being Mummy