Feeling Smug!

So far so Good!  I have managed to have a clean-ish living life so far this week, keeping up with the old keep fit classes, eating well and even staying off the vino!

I have also signed up for a new exercise class tomorrow called ‘Body Attack!’   I know…. Part of me is dreading it, but the rest of me is hoping I will absolutely love the excruciating pain (and lots of sweating too no doubt) and make it a regular feature.  So watch this space!

My daughter has been questioning my ‘obsession’ with exercise this week.

“Why are you wearing that stuff again mummy?” referring to my trainers, work out gear etc. which I feel like I pretty much live in now..

“Because I’m off to my exercise class darling.”  She looks thoughtful for a while and then replies. “But you’re not over weight Mummy, so why do it?”  I love my daughter!

“I know… but it is to keep my heart fit and healthy sweetheart”

“Yeah, but Daddy doesn’t do exercise, so why must you?”

“Daddy would if he had the time babes.”

“He should walk or bike to work then.”  This is all well and good, but as my husband works a 50 minute drive away, it would take him most of the day to walk to work.

“Maybe Daddy could go for a walk at lunchtime instead?”  Daddy had entered the room at this point and looked at me eyebrows raised.  Poor thing.

All this healthy discussion is good though.  I am pleased that I can be a good role model for my daughter with regards to keeping healthy, but at the same time I don’t want her to be hung up on food, exercise, body image etc. etc. as so many young girls are these days.

“I’m only 9 mummy, so I don’t need to do it do I?”

“Absolutely not, you get enough exercise and activity naturally, running around all the time!”  is my considered reply…

All you can do is guide your kids on the right path.  I cannot remember ever even considering dieting or exercise or anything until my late teens.  At that age I was fortunate enough to be able to eat pretty much anything and dance it off at the weekend!  Ah those were the days…

In spite of being busy with all this healthy smug living I managed to sort out our airport parking for our hols this week, even though it’s still miles away…

I compared many, many hotels with parking included and in the end simply went for a nice big, franchisee, modern hotel very close to the airport with a stress free bus to catch to the airport which ran at regular intervals.  My husband booked a charming hotel last time we flew, and to be frank, although it was a nice, old, character filled place.  The family room we were in was in the rafters and I did not sleep one bit as it was stifling!  The rest of my family seemed to rest just fine… But not me.  I struggle to sleep in hotel rooms as it is, always have.  Even when it was a regular part of my job I never rested the same when away from my lovely bed at home.  Anyway, this time I wanted a room which was temperature controlled in a nice modern building.  When I emailed the confirmation through to my hubby to print (as he still hasn’t got round to fixing our printer…) he sent a very loud email back –

HOW MUCH!!!!!!!!

Honestly, he does make a fuss.  He should know by now, I am far more interested in spending the night before our big trip in a lovely room and consuming a scrummy breakfast, than saving a few extra quid!  Life is just too flipping short!!   I am spending all this dosh on a Disney holiday as an investment in memories, which are priceless in my opinion.  Daddy will thank me once we get to the lovely (if only a teensy bit over-priced) hotel, you know it makes sense!

Right, best get off, I’m joining my daughter at the school for a LIVES CPR training session today – get me!!  Ready to Save Lives too!

Target: Smug Clean Living Guru in the making!

Getting there!

La Vida Loca!

I have great plans for this week, a clean living week looms large!  Last week just seems like a blur, I couldn’t tell you what I did, but I seemed to have something on constantly.  Although I don’t have a sausage to show for it!

My blessed tick list is nearly all ticked off for now though, so this week I have the very best of intentions to exercise every day, as this darn ‘middle-age-spread’ simply doesn’t want to shift.  It really is infuriating that I have to do so much activity just to maintain the status quo, never mind actually lose any belly fat!  My friend reckons we get this extra layer of blubber for a reason…  maybe extra insulation to keep our aging bodies warm?  If this is the case Mother Nature is playing a very cruel prank on womankind!

I have been letting myself sink into self-pity lately.  It is not healthy for body or soul.   I need more positive energy to flow through my life.  I need to accept that, for now, my main job is as a SAHM.  Any other projects will just have to be put on hold until both kids are at secondary and I am no longer required on the school run, or home in the holidays.  The whole point of this stage in my life was to support my children and my husband for them to achieve their ultimate goals.

I change my mind every day on what I might do, given the choice.  Study again, get a conventional office job again, work in a school again…  The list goes on.  The fact is that I still don’t know what I want to do when I grow up, and probably never will.  I envy my son, as he has wanted to be a programmer since the age of 4.  I can’t see him changing this goal now.  It is very clear cut for him, he is adamant this is the career he wants to pursue.

My daughter however, a more creative soul, is a bit more vague on her future plans.  She has chosen all sorts of different careers from teacher to artist to baker…  She has plenty of time to decide, I will support her regardless, as I have always floated along really.  I never once said “When I grow up I want to be a Business Analyst”, I would have been a pretty dull individual if I had.  It was just the career I ended up in, and it was fine, until I had my kids.  It is so hard, you only get one life, you have to use it well, enjoy every moment with the family and friends in your life who you love the most!  (Which reminds me I must really go see my Dad…)

The way I see it, although this may sound morbid… Imagine your tombstone, what will it say?  What will it say about your life.  You can bet your bottom dollar it will mention your place within your family “mother, wife, daughter, sister, grandmother…” It may have a beautiful poem or quote to describe your personality or your attitude towards life.  It is very unlikely it will mention your CV…  What is important to you?  What do you want people to remember you for?  Your gentle spirit? Or your report writing?  See my point?

This does not mean your career is irrelevant, far from it, as of course it is part of you, it is part of your life that makes you, you.  It is important for your self-worth and esteem.  Of course it is.  Life is for living, just make sure you live it the way that you want to, not the way convention says you should.

Right, well now I have exhausted my morality chip and need to get back to my clean living, I have even left the vino off the groceries this week… See how long that lasts!

“Livin’ La Vida Loca” baby!

Target: Enjoy every moment

Always.

Thank my lucky stars!

Ever since I was a youngster, I have always needed something new to keep me interested.  I get bored very easily…  I am sure that had I not had children in my thirties I would have embarked on a change of career of some kind just to keep me challenged and satisfied.  I am starting to feel like that again.  It has been 9 months since I last had a full time job, I knew I would get to this stage of ‘make or break’ at some point, just not this quick.

My main purpose in life is to support my family, but to do that I have to retain my sanity.  Up until recently I was able to do that by starting my blog and writing my first novel.  Now that the dust has settled on all that, I need to motivate myself anew to continue writing as an outlet to calm my state of mind.

I really don’t want to give in and get a lil’ part time job just for the sake of it, because if I do, although I will be earning, my dreams of becoming a writer will be on the back burner again.  Also, it will mean yet again sorting out child care for my own children, which is not what I’ve been striving for.  Even though they are getting older I still don’t want to miss anything!

A good example was the other morning walking to school.  My son suddenly declares “Mummy, mummy, wow look at this!” I turned around not knowing what to expect… “This bird, it’s just eaten a worm!” He is nearly 11 years old and apparently he tells me he has never seen a bird do that before up close!  It is so wonderful to me that he is still spellbound by the magic of nature and it hasn’t been totally lost with all his gaming obsessions.  It also reminds me that he is still ultimately a child, and will be for some years yet.  Just having the time with them in the morning means so much… not like when I was in a constant rush and panic to get to work and didn’t pay much attention to anything else…

I have also come to the realization that with my daughter only having a few years left at primary school, this really is a time to cherish.  You could argue that at any age, but this is the last years of innocence, and I want my daughter to have my full attention!

It was refreshing yesterday to discuss with my children what colour they would like for their magic bands at Disney.  I had paid the balance off (skint-a-saurus!) and saw it as a great excuse to start talking about the holiday… despite the fact it’s months away!  It put everyone in a good mood and was a real tonic.  I am afraid I am a Disney addict.  Just giving myself the ‘Mrs Incredible’ logo on my Disney profile makes me smile.  I love to be lost in the Disney bubble for a couple of weeks, acting like the big kid I don’t often get the chance to be!  My Grandparents took me for the first time at the age of eight, shortly after my mum passed, for both their sakes and mine.. and I have been hooked ever since…

It sounds corny, but it really is where happiness lives, and I get the same feel good factor now that I did at a young age.  My son is old enough now to go on all the big rides and my daughter, although still obsessed with ‘It’s a Small World’ and ‘Peter Pan’ rides, is slowly coming around to taking a few more risks.  It means we can all stick together as a family, rather than splitting up to go onto different rides.  Although my son is still trying to get me on the “Tower of Terror” which I had vowed never to go on again!!  My husband won’t budge either though so my money’s on him talking me round…

So, what to do…  Well thank my lucky stars that’s what!  I remember some of my work colleagues telling me to ‘just enjoy it’ and not stress about feeling guilty.  However I think I’m learning to be at peace with the ‘guilt’ thing..  It’s the boredom thing that is still nagging away at me!  So much so I even started looking into Open University courses last week, much to my husband’s despair!

Hey ho!  I just need to find a way to keep motivated, as when I’m writing I’m fine.  It’s when I’m not that’s the problem.  I know, I’ve got a great idea!!  I just stop doing household chores, and get on the flipping lap top!!  (Good excuse to avoid the ironing pile which is just getting bigger and Bigger and BIGGER!!!)

“It’s a Small World after all… It’s a Small World after all… IT’S A SMALL WORLD AFTER ALL!!”  Sing it with me!!!

My kids – “Oh god, she’s off again…”

Target:  Long Live the Mouse! (oh, and Mrs Incredible – Daddy loves her boots!)

Done.

Coping with Stuff!

When I decided to start this blog it was very exciting.  It was something completely different to anything I’d embarked on in the past and a totally new world.  The networking aspect of the endeavor seemed like a complete minefield (and still does a bit to be honest).  Trying to get my head around how it all worked and the best way to make new alliances whilst maintaining and attempting to improve the blog’s exposure, it takes a lot of graft to keep going.   I actually had to stop myself getting too obsessed with the number of followers my new blog was getting on Social Media.  It was almost like an addiction to keep checking if the number had gone up or down.

I just had to take a step back into real life and leave the virtual reality alone for a bit.  I can totally relate to the young people of today getting totally obsessed with their so called ‘popularity’ judged by followers.  It is rather scary.

I’ve got to be honest I had no idea how time-consuming the whole process would be.  I have had to remind myself of the reason I started this blog in the first place.  It was a way of sharing my experiences and maybe making a few new kindred souls on the way.  I still enjoy this process but have learned not to spend too much time on social media and concentrate more on real life instead.

The pressure which seemed to build and build when I hadn’t written anything for a few days is not completely under control, but this is meant to be fun!  I’ve just got to put things in perspective.  The main reason for doing this is to give myself the purpose I need to maintain my sanity, not to create stress where it is not required.  I get my fair share of that just as a Mum and Wife Thank-you-Very-Much!

We also have the looming cloud of an appeal for our son to get into his local secondary school.  It seems impossible to start planning his new adventure without knowing which school he will end up at!  I received all the bumff from the school at which he has been accepted, with a gazillion forms to fill out in the next few days.  It also gave details of my son’s induction day.  Now, as the school is miles away it will be impossible for me to be in two places at once.  Therefore I will need Daddy’s help which will probably mean him booking some time off.  However when I showed him the letter, he took one look at the school name and put it back in the envelope “I’ll worry about that when I have too” he states.  I then try to explain about taking time off, but he doesn’t want to know.  He is basically ignoring it until after the appeal, which isn’t going to take place until June I might add…  Lucky for me I cannot ignore it, as all the chuffing forms still need filling out regardless.  I just want it over with, but I guess the main thing is that my son is oblivious to all this stress.  He is just his happy go lucky self the majority of the time and I know he’ll be okay regardless.  It’s just his neurotic Mumma who can’t cope with it all… But it’s just because I care!

It didn’t help that I thought my husband hadn’t noticed my new hair do last night, minor I know, but it just added to my downer.  Then this morning he pipes up “Morning Blondie”, “Oh, so you did notice then?”, “Yeah well I was tired last night”.  Great, I think I’m just feeling a bit over-sensitive right now, best try and get that under control too!

Big hugs required at school pick up time me thinks…

Target:  Cope

Pending!

 

 

SAHM – Keeping the Faith?

I don’t know whether it’s just because the first week back is always difficult to adjust to, but I’m feeling decidedly uneasy about keeping my mind nourished.  Don’t get me wrong I’m happy to be around for my kids in my SAHM role.  Not least on a day like yesterday where I got a call from the school as my son had decided to kiss the concrete on the playground.  I was rather shocked when I saw him though, I was just expecting a couple of scratches and he limps through to reception with a bandage across his eye!  As it happened it looked worse than it was, as these head injuries tend to.  There was a cut across his eye brow and he was badly grazed and bruised along the side of his face, but mainly he was just in shock.  Once I got him home in front of the TV with some Easter Choc and dosed up with Calpol he started to cheer up.   The poor lad, it doesn’t help that all his mates seem to be off to the Grammar school in September, and we’re having to appeal just to try to get him into the Academy around the corner!  ‘Over-subscribed’ they say..  So why not send him on a bus to a school nineteen miles away in the middle of nowhere!  It’s never easy … I feel that I need to be here for them more with every challenge that is thrown at us.

Unfortunately though that doesn’t mean I don’t feel that something is missing.  My days are busy, as all Mums are.  The normal chores, exercise four times a week, blogging, writing my books, school events, supporting my family etc.  It all fills the time quite well thank you.  So why do I feel on such a downer?

I wonder if it is just the fact I am not earning a regular wage any more.  I had a conversation with my husband about how I feel.  He reassured me, by telling me that I contribute in so many other ways, he couldn’t do what he does if I didn’t support him and the kids as I do.  I understand this, and want to continue to support my family in any way I can.   We were chatting while having a lovely meal at his Football Club in the Hospitality Suite, my treat to him as it was the first time in eighteen years he had got me anywhere near the place.  I am glad I went, not least because it was actually a good game and his team won – bonus!  All that said, that is his world and it will probably take another eighteen years to get me back.  I would definitely recommend doing the hospitality thing though, a nice meal and few glasses of vino certainly sweetened the experience.

So maybe it isn’t the money, maybe it’s my (in the words of beyonce) “Independent women” gene kicking in.  I have always been this way.  I had many years living a bachelorette life with a thriving career before I met my husband.   The decision I made once the kids came along to take a break, to care for them and for my aging Grandparents was the right one at the time.  It is certainly not one that I regret.  The only problem is, ever since leaving the career treadmill, I have never really managed to replace it with a sufficient substitute to keep me satisfied.

I guess I have always been a naturally social person too.  It is getting increasingly difficult to motivate myself to work at home.  I have not touched my writing for several weeks, I really need to buckle down on my sequel, but it’s just not happening at the moment.  I feel like I’m whinging again..  I am thankful for my situation, I am very lucky, I know this.  But it doesn’t stop me feeling like there is just an element of my life missing, I’ve just got to find it!  The saying ‘the grass is always greener’ comes to mind.  I know it isn’t and I don’t want to go anywhere else.  I want to find it here!

Better keep searching, in the meantime I need to get my bottom in gear and get back to my writing.  I understand why a lot of authors are seen as loners and eccentrics now!  And I am certainly not either!  (A good excuse not to do the ironing again of course..)

Target:  Keep the SAHM Faith!

Done! (Well almost)

Keep the Magic!

We have made it through our wonderful Easter holidays and now the reality of routine hits hard!  No matter how many times I had to nag my kids to stop trying to kill each other it was still lovely being at home together with no real place to be.  Daddy also managed a few days off over the Easter weekend although he probably feels like he has gone back to work for a rest today!

I vaguely remember Daddy asking “Why is Mummy so Grumpy children?” on his return home from work on the Wednesday, obviously in a jolly good mood at the prospect of 5 days off…  I therefore had great pleasure in reminding him of this, as by the 3rd day he was also decidedly grumpy and fed up of nagging the children to stop maiming each other!

My son was quite pragmatic in his approach to Daddy’s time off “Well Daddy you have some time off work!  Well, you still have work here, but never mind…I bet you’re still happy Daddy?”    My son, ever the realist was probably referring to the list of home jobs which I (and my daughter I might add) had been reminding him of constantly all week.  I am happy to announce that Daddy did manage to tick most of them off his list.  He didn’t however get as far as his own list.. So clearing out the Garage will have to wait until next time?

Easter Sunday I was awoken by my over-enthusiastic daughter at stupid-O-Clock to ask if she could go see what the Easter Bunny had left in the garden!  My reply, was “don’t be silly darling, it’s not like it’s Christmas!” As Mummy had certainly not yet bounced around the garden planting chocolate eggs at that daft time in the morning!  My husband and I even ended up having a debate about the whole Easter Bunny thing.. (Remembering this was the day he had reached ‘Grumpy Daddy’ mode).

I did manage to drag myself out of bed eventually and go and set the whole jolly Easter egg hunt up!  The children and I went downstairs and had a jolly old time, much fun being had and much laughter.  However when I went to find Daddy still upstairs in bed and asked him if he’d like to watch the video I took of all the frivolity…  “No I do Not!” was his reply.  Rather taken aback, and wondering what his problem was, I replied “So, you don’t want to see your children having lots of fun in the garden then?” (in disgruntled tones of course).  “I don’t agree with it.  Our daughter still believes in the Easter Bunny for god sake!”  “So what?  She still believes in Santa too! What does it matter!”

I mean, does it really matter, she’s 9 years old and still thinks a giant bunny delivers chocolate eggs to every garden in the world?  It sound bonkers, but then so does a jolly looking man with a red suit and a beard!  I, although surprised she still believes, have no problem with it.  My son, bless him goes along with it for her, and I don’t say anything one way or the other…  She will eventually no doubt be seduced by peer pressure in the playground and reside herself to the fact that neither magical creature exists.  But for now, it’s nice she still has the belief in the Magic.  I remember with great angst my Granddad telling me that Santa didn’t exist, and it’s a very painful memory..  I think I cried or something.  I guess he didn’t want me to be teased at school for believing…  My daughter is in every other way a very street wise, intelligent and charming human being and I’m sure she’ll survive a teensy bit longer believing…

Anyway Daddy did eventually cheer up…and we had a fab family day out together…  Daddy even managed to get into his daughters good books, by making a special trip to the shops on the way home to get her a JO-JO Bow!!!  She is now obsessed by them, and obviously has Daddy wrapped around her little finger after all….  I’m just happy she’s into the girly stuff for a change!  She’s even asked if she can have a girly day out shopping for her birthday next year… I’m so proud!   She might even consider a trip to get her toenails done for holiday with her Momma after all!!

Happy days…

Target:  Keep the Magic!

Done (For now..)

Hopeful holidays…

Is it just me, or do any other mums out there feel absolutely wiped out at this time, the time we call the End-of-term!    I have no real explanation for it.  But a change of routine is definitely required for not just me, but for my kids to recharge their batteries in this game we call life.

This last week has been a typically bonkers, crazy, school obsessed scenario, with school trips, Easter projects, Church services, and finished off with non-uniform today.  A typical last week really, but my head just doesn’t seem to be able to cope with SO-MUCH-STUFF going on.  It hasn’t helped that I’m trying to plan my daughter’s birthday parties.  Yes, partieS in the plural…One for the family this weekend at home, and one for her friends the weekend after trampolining, not to mention pressie buying and wrapping.

I enjoy the family coming over, but what I can’t love is the clean up of the house before hand!  I might have mentioned before that Domestic Goddess I am NOT!!  Also, I know it’s not worth doing anything until the weekend, as the house will just get messed up again, God love ’em!

At least the weather is on our side, which means my lovely hubby also needs to mow the lawn tomorrow!  Which is slightly worrying as he is on a ‘lads’ night’ tonight, so let’s hope they don’t suffer too much of the ‘Tequila, it makes me happy!’ syndrome!

I actually managed to drag myself along to ‘Tennis Cardio’ last night, with my lovely  ‘Always-late-but-always-smiling’ Buddy!  We both had a good ol’ debate about totally losing it with our kids while trying to simultaneously cook tea, assist them with their art projects and get our tennis gear on!  It is reassuring when you realize you’re not the only one, my pal put it down to the ‘Summer Moon’ so I’m quite happy to go along with that one!  Once on court, it was going great until I managed to position myself behind a super-sonic tennis ball which whacked me right on the ear!  My ear was ringing big time!  So I had to sit out for a few minutes, feeling a right plonker to wait for the buzzing to stop.  It didn’t really hurt per say, it just stunned me slightly, so I put on a brave face and carried on regardless.  Other than that, it was mostly enjoyable, although I really need to improve my fitness levels!

The annoying thing is, I’ve been on this exercise lark for several months now and the weight is just not budging!  I wouldn’t mind but it didn’t used to be this way!  Now I am more mature, shall we say, it’s a lot harder to tone up.  It’s not impossible, just flipping hard work!   Unfortunately, the holidays don’t really help as I won’t get to go to any classes, but I’ve just got to make sure I stay active with the kids.  I’ve done my best not to plan anything out for the next two weeks, so I’ve not put anything in my calendar, as I usually end up filling the days up too soon and the weeks fly by!  Although I must admit I have been kind of planning most days in my head – I can’t help it!!  It’s the Project Manager in me!!  I have to plan and be in control of EVERYTHING!

I bet it sounds bonkers to all you working mums out there that I’m complaining about being worn out.  However, the lack of structure in my day does not help me cope with my stress levels.  I am a creature of habit, and have to fill my days with exercise classes, and personal projects to keep me sane (but the housework can wait!).  I really feel my tolerance levels have dropped massively. When working in a school, patience is paramount to your ability to do your job effectively, so I had it in bucket loads.  But lately, I seem to be lacking the propensity to maintain my patience.  I am hoping the holidays will provide an outlet to do some fun stuff with the kids, enjoy celebrating my daughters birthday and put me back on track.

My blessed hubby doesn’t always help put me in a positive mood either.  The other morning, my son decided to pick a school jumper from his laundry pile which was creased.  My husband calls me into my son’s room when he is on his way out of the door.  “Have you got an ironed jumper for him, he looks like a homeless person”.  Well you can imagine my very-slight-irritation at this comment.  So when he decides to repeat again. “Well, have you got another jumper for him or not?” I could not stop myself being slightly short with him.   He didn’t mean anything by it, I know that.  But questioning my ability to simply cloth my children in something respectable, when I manage it EVERY-OTHER-FLIPPING-DAY-OF-THE-YEAR, was rather insulting.  Bless him.

So, lets put on our happy faces and enjoy the time we have with our children these Easter Holidays, life is too short to huff and puff (which my husband tells me I’ve been doing a lot lately apparently)…. so turn that frown upside down (and maybe book a pedicure for when they go back…)  Enjoy!

Have a Fab Easter Everyone!

Target:  Hopeful Holidays

Done!

 

 

 

Chasing the Rainbow!

Our kitchen looks like we have taken out shares in ‘The Range’ Arts and Crafts division.  We have my daughters rivers project (in progress), my daughters Easter project (in progress), my son’s Easter project (in progress)… And finally my daughter’s ‘making boxes’ project, you guessed it..Still in progress!

I love how creative my daughter is, I am more than happy for her to craft to her hearts delight if that’s what she enjoys doing.  My son, however is not the creative one, and does these projects under duress usually..  However, to my amazement this weekend, my daughter was helping him by holding his eggs, while he painted them.  They managed about 4, before they started calling each other names.  As my son didn’t agree with the dots my daughter had decided to sporadically add to his lovely symmetrical design.  At that point I took over, but I was impressed by the focus he was able to apply to said task.   Why am I always surprised when my children prove me wrong… Lets hope they keep doing it!

I managed to escape ‘Mister Maker’s paradise’ by going out for a lovely long lunch on Saturday, as a belated birthday outing for my buddy and I, who have our birthdays two days apart.   We debated everything from our children’s futures, Sun soaked hols, hot men on TV – you name it – we had an opinion on it!  Probably getting louder and louder as we consumed several vinos and a lovely ‘Eden Rainbow Cocktail’ which was super yummy!  The tapas and homemade burgers we had didn’t really go any where near soaking up the drinkie poos!  Wish we had two birthdays a year like the Queen!

My husband had done a sterling job of cooking the munchkin’s tea and cleaning up etc… However he was rather perturbed by the children’s comments on his cooking.

“You don’t take the skins off the Daddy!”  “No, no, I don’t have butter, he does!”

Poor Daddy, I blame myself.  I do pander too much to my kids at teatime.  We have got into such a routine that I automatically know how each child prefers their potatoes.  When I was a child I’m sure it was just a ‘take it or leave it!’ mantra.  If I didn’t like it I would go hungry.   The fact that most teatimes, I cook two different meals, one for the kids and one for us adults is I know ridiculous, but I’m sure I’m not on my own.  Fussy eaters are common place these days, and I’m sure it’s just down to soft parents like me who do it just for an easy life.  Of course, there is so much more choice nowadays.  I can only remember having meat and two veg every night.  I didn’t have my first Chinese meal until I was a teenager.  So our taste pallet has grown so much we are a slave to too much choice!

At least the children had some appreciation of the Mumma’s cooking skills for once!

Target: Chase the Rainbow.

Done.. with bells on!

 

 

Holiday Dreaming…

Last night my hubby and I started to talk about our holiday this year.  We are both keen to go to Florida, as of course are the kiddies, so it’s about time I started to look for a good deal!

I asked my husband brightly “Would you like to travel from our local airport this time, rather than travel down to London?”  A simple question you would think.  “I don’t really mind either way” he replies.

“Oh, well I just thought it wouldn’t be quite such a squash for me and the children in the back of the car”  What happens is you see, Daddy’s car does not have a big enough boot for all our suitcases for two weeks.  Daddy and I have a big suitcase each and the children have a medium sized one each.  Therefore we end up with two cases in the boot and two cases in the passenger foot well and front seat.  This means it is a very uncomfortable journey in the back, with me squeezed in between the munchkins all the way, which last time, took about three hours.

“Why don’t we get a roof rack storage thingy?” I offer.

“I am not spending money on something that we only use once a year!” he retorts.  Easy for him to say..

“Well, then..” I try again… “We are planning on getting a new car soon, why don’t we get an estate car?  Then we could fit the bikes in too?”  This did not go down well.

“Genius!” Is his sarcastic reply, “I tell you what let’s just buy a van!  Or maybe a plane of our own!  Just so we can make our only holiday trip of the year more comfortable!  Honestly!”

“Sarcasm is the lowest form of wit dear..”  I thought it best to leave it at that.  Hubby was clearly not in the right frame of mind for this discussion, so I thought I’d best leave it.  He had only just got in from work at close to ten pm, so I’ll let him off!

Mummy logic has decided to try my best to avoid the luggage discussion again, because it really isn’t a big deal in the scheme of things.  Instead I will do my utmost to find flights from our local airport which is less than an hour away, problem solved!

Although I wouldn’t mind one of those Mummy Truck thingies which I see around so much at school pick up time.  It really is hilarious when you see some poor frazzled mummy trying to park a beast of a car (like the white one’s though!) in a normal car spaced spot.

This is why I am quite pleased we stuck at two kiddies.  Once you go for three plus all manner of different issues arise, not to mention sibling rivalries escalate.  There is the Seven-Seater-Mega-Truck you need for all the children, goodness knows what the arguments would be like about luggage storage in that scenario!  Also booking holidays becomes all the more problematic… and expensive.     Most package deals seem to be based on the typical two kiddie family, if there is an extra kiddie, or one less adult things get complicated.  Looking at extra rooms, extra transport etc. etc.  I’m sure it’s worth it to have another lovely to care for, but I’m quite pleased I dodged that bullet!

So, the holiday research begins…  No doubt I will spend hours pondering over different options and then just choose the first one I found… Similar to any clothes shopping trips really.  I have to look round every other shop to make sure I’m doing the right thing before purchasing that first LBD I saw in the first shop I came to!  It is the same on line, everyone does it now.  We have to compare everything,  using comparison websites for everything from holidays to drain insurance and they are raking it in!  Still it can be helpful to do everything from one place, otherwise it would be several more pointless hours of surfing!

Anyway, I already kinda know where we will be staying, my daughter has informed me “If we go to Florida mummy I want to go to the hotel with the big spotty doggies outside please”  So, that’s settled then, Disney Hotels here we come!

Target: Think about holiday research (but not actually get round to it!)

Done!

 

 

Retail Therapy

Does anyone else freak out when they enter Asda, or even just think about entering through those huge sliding doors.. Does it fill anyone else with fear and dread?

I don’t know what it is about the light open space of this Superstore but I can’t bear it. Maybe it’s the bright lighting, the constant assault on the senses, the Asda price this, or the Asda price that!

It is amazing how brand awareness spreads.  On holiday in Egypt many years ago, I remember the entertaining shouts of the street vendors running alongside the Nile, shouting “Asda Price! Asda Price!” – Hilarious!

For some reason my daughter loves this shop, well it’s not rocket science, I know the reason.  Toys, toys and more toys!  My son however has the typical male gene and absolutely hates any kind of shopping, so he would rather eat his own tongue than shop anywhere!

I’ve never considered myself a Supermarket Snob, but I don’t get the same feelings of trepidation going to say, Sainsburys or M&S.  In fact the endorphins start flowing as soon as I’m in the car and on my way to these stores (unless it’s Christmas).  What do they do differently?   Is it just the snob factor that sets something off in my brain to say these places represent quality rather than quantity?  The marketing clearly makes a difference.  It is very clever subliminal tactics that seduce me to react this way.  As I used to work in the Food Manufacturing industry I am well aware that the majority of products come from exactly the same places and are processed in exactly the same way.  The only difference in most cases is the brand.  I know all this yet I am still seduced… Maybe I enjoy being seduced.  Just like when I have a rare trip off to the city and go into one of the big department stores.  The makeup counters call to me… I usually end up buying every single extra the beautifully made up assistant recommends to me, because I just love being made a fuss of.  They are very good at making you feel special, and it’s ‘because you’re worth it!’

It just doesn’t feel the same buying your make up from the Asda aisle, even though once again, no doubt the ingredients are not that different.

I have absolutely no excuse what-so-ever for doing my grocery shopping on line either.  It has just become the norm.  I never pay for delivery, as I always make sure we spend enough to warrant free delivery.   Once again this is a false economy, but it makes it easier to justify. Who wants to make a trip to the shops and pay for petrol?  No!  I can’t do that??  I just begrudge wasting an hour out of my day wandering aimlessly around a supermarket, most probably being seduced by products I don’t really need and spending more anyway…

Nah!  I’ve convinced myself it all makes sense!  Ladies logic and all that!

Now, I need to get back to working out what the hell my daughter can do for her ‘rivers’ project.  The deadline date seems to be looming … And unfortunately I have not been able to find a nice little ‘model kit’ to buy online, so we may even have to use our own creativity!  God help us!  There’s nothing for it, I will have to involve the Dadda in this one!

Oh for goodness sake, I surprise myself at times!  I’ve just said goodbye to the Washing Machine Engineer Man, happily signed his device and said ‘thank you very much’ as he says he’s fixed it!  Then I go and see, after he’s gone.  I turn the dials..Nothing happens.  I stare at it for a while and think ‘surely not’ I heard the thing going round once he’d fixed it!  If I’ve let him go and it’s still not working, hubby will not be happy!  I really should have checked it before he left!  But then…  I peer behind the machine, and notice something.  He only left the plug switched off at the mains!  I wonder if he did that just to test me!  Well, I didn’t do very well.  I despair at my dizziness at times!! Hey ho!  All’s well that ends well… although now I suppose I’ll have to get on with some blessed washing!!

Target: Prove Ladies Logic

Done.