Sunday, 21 February 2010

Bathing in Asses Milk

Oh my goodness, I can't believe its so long since I last blogged. Need to do some goal setting/mapping and sort it out!

Anyway, todays blog is on a funny, completely off the wall subject that Ben, my soon to be ten year old, came up with the other night when we were all sharing a hotel room in Scotland.

For some reason we were talking about Cleopatra bathing in asses milk, think maybe it had come up at school, and Ben couldn't get his head around why anyone would want to do that! So, he came up with his 'wierdy scale' and Cleopatra went straight to the top! (by the way Nat, who is now six, coined the phrase 'wierdy' a while ago, so it's a normal word in our house).

And, so began a long and detailed conversation on who should be on the wierdy scale and whereabouts they would appear. I'm pleased to say(?!) that I went in very close to the top because I eat coconut oil, and I walk around the house naked!! Oh and I put Epsom salts in my bath, apparently that is very wierdy!!

Michael Jackson (RIP) was off the scale for sleeping in an oxygen tank, and dangling one of his children over a hotel balcony. Yep, can agree with that.

Nat, very high as well because he puts his willy into tubes - err not sure what this is about? Need to keep more of an eye on my children obviously.

Lauren and Daddy were lucky in that they were both termed 'normal'.

We had such a laugh, and now wherever we are the kids point out people who should be on the 'wierdy scale' and whereabouts they should be on it! What fantastic imaginations children have. I so love spending time with them.

We've been to Centerparcs for half term and had an absolute ball, cycling, doing animal 'stuff', swimming, swimming and more swimming. We've come back with those wrinkles you get on the ends of your fingers when you stay in water too long!!!!

Just to finish - Nat's really into books at the moment despite being dyslexic and not able to read yet. So we read to him every night. He likes to have at least four 'tractors' (chapters!!) if he can get away with it.

It won't be so long until I blog again - honest.

Saturday, 9 January 2010


Hi there and a Happy New Year! Hope everyone had a great festive period. Not blogged for a while and this one may end up being a bit of a mish mash but here goes.

I took Nat (my five year old son) and Lauren (my seven year old daughter) to church on Christmas Eve. We're not regular church goers but I just love to sing carols at the top of my voice just once every Christmas. The church was full, it was Christingle, so lots of kids were packing the pews. We sat with some other parents and kids from school; not such a good idea as Nat and Harry thought a rough and tumble would be a good idea - didn't go down too well with some people!

The vicar began talking and asked the children whose birthday we would be celebrating on Christmas day. Nat turned to me and said " Is it mine mummy? Is it Grans?!! " Bless him. I said it was Jesus' so he shouts out at the top of his voice " JESUS". Then the vicar asked where Jesus was born. Nat got this one straight away, he was on a roll now! "Bethlehem", again at the top of his voice - Lauren and I were nearly doubled up laughing.

A couple of days before this we were walking to school past the field in front of the house, where the kids had made a snow den the day before. Someone had clearly had fun knocking most of it down. " Mummy, teenagers did it, they're all bad aren't they " he said crossly. I told him that some of them may be but definitely not ALL of them. "well 219 of them are, I know!!!".

Talking of snow, my three are absolutely loving this winter wonderland we have at the moment. It's like being in the Alps in the lanes round our house. On Tuesday when school was closed we made a two roomed igloo with all the neighbours; all working together to produce what I have to say is a masterpiece. Since then we've taken candles out (vanilla no less!)every evening and sat out with our kids and their friends in the semi darkness and then had a sledging session before bed. Such fun! Wish we could guarantee it every winter. It definitely brings out the kid in me. I went walking in it at midnight last night, it was beautiful. The fact that I haven't been able to get to clients houses this week to do any work is slightly annoying but.........

To finish today's blog, we spent today with my dad and his wife. They have toddler twin grand daughters and told us some funny little tales that I want to pass on.

Their mum has always held up grapes before passing them to the girls to check that they contain no seeds. Now when they're given a handful of grapes they think it's the norm to hold each grape up in the air before eating it!!

They've just started talking and can say a few words, one of which is 'bib-on'. They've heard since being tiny " let mummy (or daddy) put your bib on" and assume that it's all one word. Cute huh?

That's it for today.

Monday, 23 November 2009


I don't know what it is at the moment.... nearly Christmas, nearly the end of term, their respective ages(?), their respective personalities (?) who knows? - but I cannot get my three children to do anything that I want them do.

I've been looking after them alone for ten days and it taking its toll! I'm shattered, bad tempered and reaching for the chocolate for comfort. All tell tale signs that they've managed to ground me down. They are in control and not the other way round. Don't get me wrong I know you can't put kids into neat little boxes, and nor would I want to. I love their differences, their quirky little ways, but sometimes, just sometimes it would be really nice if they did as I asked the first time I asked them!

Yesterday, was the final straw, and I only had the boys. Lauren was away at Grandads for the weekend, and I only needed to do three things all day; visit the tip with the bags of litter the bin men are not collecting at the moment, clean/tidy the house, and then go and pick Lauren up from my dads in the afternoon.

I soon realised it was going to go pear shaped when the boys were still in pyjamas at 11.30am despite me asking them fifteen times(yes I know precisely because I counted) to get dressed. I even laid their clothes out for them, between them and the TV, and still no joy. I even turned the TV off and still no joy!

By 7pm, having wasted a good hour traipsing back to Ferrybridge services twice to pick up Nathaniel's forgotten box of GoGos (God forbid they are ever lost - they must be worth hundreds!) and consequently ruining our Sunday dinner , I had had ENOUGH.

In desperation I searched the bookshelf for help and came across a book called RAISING HAPPY CHILDREN by Jan Parker and Jan Stimpson. Having made my kids lives a misery yesterday I sat down to read it, feeling guilty for my behaviour.

Things happen for a reason I believe, and so I opened it up in the middle on the most appropriate pages for me right then - A SIX-STEP PLAN FOR CO-OPERATION. Yes, my prayers had been answered. I read it avidly and am inspired. So inspired I'm going to finish this blog post by including it for any readers who are having similar issues with their little (or big) Angels.

Hope it helps, it helped me!
(not reprinted exactly by the way!)

Stop what you're doing and look at your child. This immediately stops you from shouting at a child that's upset.

Wait for eye contact - do nothing else but wait. This is respectful and so likely to get your child's attention. These two steps allow you to collect your thoughts and ask clearly and calmly without shouting or nagging.

Tell your child what you'd like them to do, clearly simply and only once.You may be pleasantly surprised here!

If steps one to three haven't worked - and apparently this is only a small minority!! - ask the child in their own words what you have asked them to do. There seems to be more of an obligation felt if the words come out of their mouths.

For the tiny amount of children who are still resisting!
Stand and wait until your child has done what you want them to do.Most parents are too busy to do this, or feel it. But if you do, your child will know you are serious and what he/she is experiencing is not scolding or nagging but calm and reasonable.

Notice and praise everything the child does in the right direction.

Good Luck. Lets have some feed back, it can't be just me that has this 'problem'.

Tuesday, 27 October 2009


Nathaniel is just five and still getting to grips with the English language. This blog is just to record some of his latest offerings in this area. Some may be a bit personal but hope you enjoy the read anyway. RX

"Mummy play a game with me". "I spy with my lemon eye"!

"It's all topsy-toesy"

I'm in year-ception aren't I mummy?" (reception!)

"Mummy, Americans tend to take their clothes off alot when they're hot don't they?"

"Its on" (Lauren loves this one - he meant slash obviously!)

"Mummy, can I have a worm please? I'd like to call it Bertie and feed it cake!"

"Mummy do wishes come true? If they do I'd wish my cuddly dog could be real".

"Does the queen sit on her throne all the time?, How thin is she? , Does she sleep on her throne too?"

"Mummy I'm going to put it in here (his toy cockroach!) and when you open the door you'll freak out your skin!!"

"Look there's a smurf shoe?!" (slip on shoe lying by the side of the road)

He still says "hate you big" when I say "love you little" - my all time favourite.

And last but not least for today, he can sing all the words to Robbie Williams Angels ,beautifully.

How gorgeous are children? I don't want mine to grow up any more. Loving them right where they're at just now.

Saturday, 24 October 2009


Lauren and Nat have decided between them that they'd like a hamster, each. As if we don't have enough pets with five cats, three guinea pigs and a corn snake, they want to increase the mini-zoo with two more furry creatures.

So, as a deterrent we've said no, unless they buy them themselves. Not just the hamsters, but the cages, the waterbottles, the wheels, the food etc. So altogether it adds up to quite a lot of money.

We had a trip to Pets At Home today, and after dodging the rats in cages (can't get my head around that at all. YUK) we reached the little furry hamsters. Oh yes, they make you go aaaah aren't they sweet but..............all that springs to my mind is the time that Nat thought the nursery hamster might like to jump from a great height, and nearly died,in our house, in our care. By the way if you'd like to read more on this please see a previous blog post all about it. Its most amusing, only because Percy survived!

We've calculated that L and N need to save over £40 each, so think we're safe for quite a while given that they each get just £5 a week pocket money, and Nat always wants to spend his the minute it hits his hot little hands. He's into Doctor Who cards at the moment, and holds up a pound coin asking how many card packs he can get with it.

Here's hoping the furry creatures are a long way off. Especially as I'd probably get the job of cleaning them out.

Little aside; Nat thinks Tinchy Stryder should be on X Factor. He thinks he'd win!! No doubt. Just about to watch John and Edward whilst writing this. Please,please, please don't let them stay in another week. They can't sing, and they look ridiculous so who the hell is voting for them?!

Another little aside; Nats new word for buttocks is buttocuts.


Sunday, 18 October 2009


I've come to the conclusion that my kids are 'well cool and well busy' (Nats phrase). I'm sure most parents think that about their kids but I'm saying it in relation to music.

I blogged a while ago and mentioned that Nat went to bed listening to the Foo Fighters. It relaxed him, really. Well, its changed now to Dizzy Rascal - Holiday in particular. Hardly soothing music but it works. He can be seen lying in his cabin bed, eyes closed, almost asleep mouthing to the tunes, word perfect.

Lauren on the other hand, whilst enjoying the likes of Dizzy and Tinchy (they've mixed their names up to Dizzy Stryder and Tinchy Rascal!)- she systematically went through Youtube the other day and watched all their latest videos, and now also knows the words - is more enamoured with Michael jackson.

Man In The Mirror was a firm favourite with all three of my kids last year in Cornwall. Chris has it on his Ipod in the car, and they used to request it and sing along on every journey. Great the first time, abit tedious the fiftieth!

She has all his albums on her Ipod and goes to sleep (with her eye mask on!) listening to Smooth Criminal. Possibly the 'extended version', possibly the 'radio edit' - she knows them all off by heart.

Bens a little more varied in his choice of music and will sometimes have 'shuffle songs' on to sleep to. Before he got his own Ipod he'd only moan if some of my country stuff came on (I have eclectic music tastes!)but think that was more because Chris told him country isn't cool (rubbish of course) rather than a proper dislike. He's rather keen on the Kaiser Chiefs, they think going to school is uncool too!

I love it that they have such a healthy regard for music. It is of course helped by the fact that mummy and daddy deliberately expose them to allsorts, via the Ipod, Youtube, TV and live concerts.

Ben's been to see the Foos live at Wembley with his dad, and I took him and some mates to see McFly a few years ago. Not quite so cool,we took him to see Westlife when he was four! and he asked me to ask all the ladies to stop screaming so he could listen to the music!!! Don't know what he made of the knickers being thrown at the band!

Lauren came with me and some girl friends to see Girls Aloud at Harewood - ok but their support, Simon Webbe was fantastic, not leat because he's very easy on the eye!! She's been twice to see Girls Aloud now, possibly an annual event from now on.

Best of all though, she's crazy about Hannah Montana/Mylie Syrus and Chris managed to get tickets for her concert at O2 just before chrstmas. Not a bad treat when you're seven! Whilst Lauren is really looking forward to it, think the pull of Santa at Hamleys the day after is greater!

They say music soothes the soul, and I've found it does just that. For me and the kids. I use it to cheer me up when I'm down, calm me when I'm angry and fire me up when I need some motivation (Anastasia is great to iron to!) And am teaching this to Ben, Lauren and Nat. I went to see Paulo Nuttini last week in Leeds and that was a really moving experience; he's so passionate about his music. I also saw Echo and The Bunnymen do a gig in their home town of Liverpool a few months ago. Ian Mcculloch was amazing. The whole concert gave me goosebumps.

So next time you've been shouting at the kids, or they're lacking in enthusiasm for life in general put some music on and get up and dance with them. I promise it works wonders - every time.

My next concert is Marc Almond (told you I have eclectic tastes)at the Grand Theatre. Not with the kids but with two guys I went to school with. One of whom I went to see Soft Cell with over twenty years ago (yes Geoff we're really that old!). Apparently Paul Ogrady is compering it, so it sounds like we're in for an erm, interesting, evening.


Friday, 14 August 2009

FUNNY five year old is so funny, he was just born to be on the stage.

Yesterday, Lauren and I were in the house, and Nat and Ben were 'gardening' outside. he came flying in all of a sudden gesticulating, saying " There's a dead hodgy in the pond mummy come and see". He kept repeating the word hodgy; which we finally worked out was a hedgehog. (The next best thing to him pronouncing the word properly was hodgeheg after several attempts, but hodgy is cute......). Sure enough, on inspection, there was a spiky creature in the pond. And well dead it was too.

Later we were all out in the garden and Ben shouted " Come and smell my plants". He'd been planting his sunflowers in the ground from their pots. I went down the steps and smelt them. Shortly after I heard Ben say to Nat " that's my PANTS". Nat was trying to sniff Ben's pants - he'd misheard! Ben laughed til he cried.

Even later, last night when I was putting Nat to bed, he told me when he gets frustrated or angry (we were having a conversation about why he nips Lauren), he sees a skull in his head , and it's all white light with a little bit of pink. He says its the skull that makes his brain work?! Any child psychologists reading this please feel free to comment?

I asked him for a good night kiss, and he said he had none made in his factory because the diggers had gone on strike.

I also had a great conversation with Ben and Lauren the other evening. Lauren said she'd like to be a police woman with a dog ; a German Shepherd.

Ben said he'd like to be an artist and a surf dude in Cornwall.

Lauren said she'd go and see him when he was famous.

Ben said "what like Pablo Picasso".

Lauren said "who?".

I launched into an explanation as to who Pablo Picasso was and how famous he was.

"He's not that famous mummy, she's never heard of him", says Ben!!

Bless them . They're so lovely.