Author Archives: Katie

The Fishy Rods Of Shame

When you first become a parent you notice quite quickly that you are doing everything wrong. There are various helpful sources from which to learn all the wrong things you are doing…
judgement3One of the first things I learnt I was doing wrong was letting the baby nap on me. This was a very bad thing. Gina Ford said that babies should nap in dark rooms for 2.5 hours and wake up feeling happy and refreshed.

This all sounded great but unfortunately the baby had other ideas. He liked to sleep for 20 minutes and woke up like a snarling rage monster.

can you not read

He slept ok in the pram and in the car but those things were also bad because he was not learning to ‘self-settle’ which is the holy grail of parenting.

self settle

By failing to have a baby that self-settled I was making a rod for my own back – he would never be able so sleep alone!

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Hurrah For Gin Half-Term Activity Planner

planner2

Monday
AM: Go to the park, watch children start throwing sand into faces of other children, threaten children, get rained on, drag children home screaming.
PM: Try and rescue the day by doing a wholesome activity such a crafting. Observe how it rapidly transcends into casual violence.

crafting

Tuesday
AM: Take children out on a trip to ‘fun family farm’. Haemorrhage £50 and get told ‘I HATE YOU!’ because you won’t buy a freakish looking Alpaca toy in the gift shop.

Alpaca
PM: Give kids iPad so they can watch other people open Surprise Eggs on YouTube.

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Sometimes You Have To Say Goodbye

It’s easy to look at pregnant women and seemingly perfect nuclear families and think, ‘Wow, don’t they have it all!’ If you are in the zone of desperately wanting a child and it being out of reach, almost everyone around you seems to hold what you are missing.

goodbye

But what you don’t see is their journey. You can’t see years of fertility treatment, failed attempts at IVF, miscarriages or the tiny babies lost. If you are lucky you will have experienced none of these things; in the worst situations some couples experience them all.

But often we just don’t know because we don’t talk about it. Or even if we do, we then quickly sweep it under the carpet because people, myself included, get all awkward when they have to discuss sad stuff. Serious stuff. Let’s just have a cup of tea and call it ‘one of those things’.

Have you ever had a conversation with a friend who told you that she’s miscarried and then quickly brushed it away because ‘It happens all the time’ – you can see that her eyes have started to water and she’s struggling to make eye contact because it doesn’t really matter how long she was pregnant for or how big or small the baby got – it was a life, there was so much excitement, so much potential and then suddenly it’s all gone, to be treated like a common cold: grow up, get over it, everyone has them! Except a couple of paracetamol doesn’t provide a quick fix when it comes to miscarriages.

hurts

Years later, when hopefully those couples have a child or children of their own, they may still feel like they are not allowed to mention their journey any more because ultimately they got their dream. But you are still allowed to feel that loss aren’t you?

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Making Kids Parties Less Awful: A 101

There may be people out there who enjoy throwing/attending kid’s parties but I don’t think I’ve ever met one of them. In short I think we can all agree that they are awful. But the question is how can we make them less awful?

Duration of party
Time works differently at kid’s parties. Every hour in a normal environment = 5 hours at a kid’s party. It’s a bit like The Matrix.

Parties that go on for too long can lead to severe psychological and physical trauma suffered by both parents and children – see the scientific diagram below which tracks likelihood of GBH being committed by guests alongside the stress of the supervising adults…

timeparties5

Note: It should be illegal to host a kid’s party of over 2 Hours.

Venue choice
Bearing in mind the above it is a good idea to carefully consider your venue choice and make sure you are able to provide ‘adult refreshments’. OK Poppy might ‘think’ she wants a soft play party for her 5th but has she properly considered the function room of your local pub?

The relief on a parents face as you hand them a beer as they walk through the door of a party is palpable.

Just tell Poppy to stop making everything about herself.

beer2

Theme
I’ve saved you hours researching on Pinterest. Here’s the theme – Poundland.

poundland

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Topsy and Tim do Costa Brava

Mummy is looking forward to a well-deserved holiday in Costa Brava. It’s been a hard year for the family after Daddy’s affair with his PA, Topsy’s expulsion for calling her teacher ‘A f&*king jobsworth @*%$’ and Tim’s recurring thread worm infestations…

Mummy cannot wait for them all to spend some quality time together – she wouldn’t use the hotel’s kids club though as she looks down on people who see holidays as an opportunity to ditch their kids and get pissed at the bar #SoSad. No… Mummy is much better than people like that!

fantasy

Saturday

The family gets up at 2.30 a.m. for their journey to the airport. Daddy idiotically thought it was worth getting an early flight to save money and maximise their time away. As soon as they have checked in Daddy has a pint while the kids begin a jousting match with their Trunkis.

airport

When they arrive in Spain Mummy discovers that the useless arsehole Daddy has booked a holiday with a 4 hour coach transfer. The toilet on the coach is out of order so Topsy pisses her pants and Tim get travel sick and voms over the lady in front’s head. Oopsy.

In the evening they are too tired to go out exploring so they go to the hotel’s family entertainment show. Topsy and Tim volunteer Mummy to take part in a break dancing competition alongside a holiday rep dressed as a large blue hippopotamus.

She loses.

hippo

Sunday

One of the nicest things about going on holiday is that you get to sample the local cuisine. Mummy spots a gorgeous little tapas bar serving delicious looking food and wine. Tim spots a McDonald’s. I think you can guess the rest.

Juans

Mummy feels disgusted that they have already been in McDonald’s and it is only day 2 of the holiday but onwards and upwards!

On their way back to their hotel Topsy and Tim spot ‘Bouncy Funland!’ it is open to 11pm and only 5 euros a ride. There is no bar.

Mummy agrees to let Tim have a go on the claw crane machine. He promises not to be disappointed if he doesn’t win a prize. Yeh.

claw

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A week in the Love Island villa (in stick people)

*N.B. names have been changed to protect identities. Also this is just a load of made up bollocks*

Monday

The islanders have become so obsessed with discussing their ‘type on paper’ that they have decided to actually write down their types on paper.

Andy has been working on his list for 2 hours and has finally nailed it. Now when a new person enters the villa he can cross reference them against his list – he is dead clever like that!my type

Lloyd asks about how personality factors into it and there is some confusion amongst the islanders with regard to what ‘personality’ actually is. Luckily Gav clarifies…

peronality

Tuesday

The islanders have been told to wrestle each other in a mud pit. No one is sure what the point of such a gratuitous task is (other than for them to all to perv on each other). The boys give each of the girl’s bums a score out of 10 and Chloe finds this throws her moral compass into turmoil… she is upset by the chauvinistic attitudes of her fellow housemates yet simultaneously elated they have rated her as having the best arse in the villa.

Best bum

A new housemate called Matt arrives. The islanders excitedly wait to hear if he is going to be able to contribute anything new to the conversation, sorry I mean BANTAAAAAAAR!

personal trainer

Sadly he is just another personal trainer. Mandy is worried he is going to cause friction in the house as he has better abs that Tony.

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18 Things I have Learnt About Camping With Kids

So camping season is upon us! All around us wholesome families are frantically purchasing blow up mattresses, enamel mugs, antiseptic hand gel, ibuprofen and enough wine boxes to kill 5 medium sized horses.

They cannot wait to get to get there, they have visions in their heads of fairy lights, bunting, marshmallow toasting, singing around the camp fire and making those chocolate and banana things you wrap in foil that turn out horrid. I’m sorry to have to tell you this, I’m sorry to have to do it but they are also COMPLETELY FUCKING DELUDED. So here is my debrief on camping with kids just in case you are thinking of making a similar mistake trip…

1. It will take you approximately 5 hours to pack your car for a two night stay and you will have had 37 different arguments before even leaving the house.

car

2. When you arrive at the camp site you will feel optimistic, capable and ready to face anything – just like Bear Grylls!

bearanimal

3. You will feel slightly less like Bear Grylls when the Sainsbury’s driver arrives delivering essential supplies of prosecco, halloumi and minted lamb kebabs.

sainos

4. You will feel more like what you actually are – a middle class twat on a camping trip.
5. You will have loads of nice food to eat but the children will exist entirely on a diet of crisps and Capri-Sun.
6. There will be so much to do! Make a list so you don’t forget anything…

camping

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I don’t know what I’m doing.

This post is a little extract from my book that I’m sharing ahead of Mother’s day this Sunday – it’s all about celebrating mums and the absolutely amazing job they do…

bitmap2

‘Ok you’re good to go!’ said the doctor. We’d been sitting around for hours waiting for the forms to be filled in and final checks to be done but those words still came as a bit of a shock. Buckling the baby into his brand new car seat and exiting the ward felt a bit like smuggling pick n’ mix out of Woolworths up the sleeves of my school sweater (which I obviously never did mum!). Was no one going to come and ask us if we knew what the hell we were doing with this kid?

But despite feeling like total amateurs we were also incredibly excited to get home and start life as a proper little family of three. Do you remember your very first days at home with your newborn? I do.

I remember getting through the door and feeling a funny shift in the atmosphere, like everything had changed. I remember feeling so tired and so happy all at once. I remember snuggling on the sofa, greeting visitors, eating cake, admiring the flowers, passing the baby around and constantly disappearing to the bedroom to get half naked to feed him. I remember greeting midwifes, crying on their shoulders and people bringing food. I remember the precious milky smell of my sons head and the sweet buttery popcorn aroma of his filled nappy. I remember looking at all the cute clothes that people bought and laughing at the size of them.

I remember looking like absolute shit but feeling like a celebrity.

I remember the ridiculously inflated boobs, hot baths, cracked nipples and the hour I sat on the toilet carefully birthing my first poo. I remember watching crappy daytime TV and crying at the soaps, even though they weren’t sad. I remember the careful arrangement of cushions on the sofa that made it just about possible to sit down and I remember it all being made ok because I was surrounded by love.

I remember the most beautiful little boy I had ever seen feeding until he was full and then sleeping curled up as a little ball on my chest. I remember thinking it didn’t seem that hard and I remember waving my husband back off to work feeling slightly terrified but otherwise confident I could cope looking after a baby on my own.

Then something happened. The milk coma thing stopped working. The baby was only a couple of weeks old and he had already malfunctioned.

I fed him and he remained awake, and not only that – he was unhappy awake. He was crying and he wouldn’t stop. So I did what many a new mum does. I scoured the internet and devoured baby book after baby book looking for the answers.

The advice all sounded so sensible. We needed a routine and a feeding and nap schedule; instead of sleeping in our arms whilst we ate our lasagne one handed, he should have a proper bedtime.

There was only one problem. He refused to get on board with the goddam book.

I was confused. All the babies in the books fed less regularly and slept much longer. Why did I get the duff version?

broken2

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Topsy and Tim – The World Book Day Catastrophe

It is the night before World Book Day and Mummy is happily dicking about on social media and ignoring the twins when she sees a new post pop up on the on the school facebook page.fuck off4Oh dear. Mummy has forgotten about World Book Day because she has a life, a job, 726 unread emails, a damp problem in the hallway, parcels to drop off at the post office, undiagnosed back pain, red final reminder bills, hardly any food in the house, an itchy head (nits? again!), washing that has been sitting in the machine for two days, PMT and 15 million other things on her multiple to do lists.

Why does it always seem to be world book day?!!?! And why didn’t her children bother to remind her!

hate books

FFS.

Mummy cannot lose face at school she must prepare emergency outfits!

favourite books4

FFS.

Mummy cannot send the twins to school clutching the Toys R Us catalogue and a Nintendo 3DS so she phones Daddy and asks him to go shopping on the way home and get the twins ANY costume that is in ANY book.

He comes home with two Harry Potter outfits so the twins can be dressed exactly the same as thousands of other kids for the simple reason that it was all that was left in Tesco’s – because that is surely the true spirit of World Book Day!

 

don't lookbad

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Topsy and Tim – Mummy’s Hangover

Mummy doesn’t get to go out very much now she has children but when she does go out she tends to get absolutely shitfaced.

freedom

After 7 Jagerbombs she forgets she has children and the responsibilities of the next day seem somewhat obsolete.

freedom2

Oh dear.

At 5am Mummy remembers she has children when she is woken up by Tim who has had a toileting incident.

tim3

Normally Daddy would be on hand to help with childcare duties but unfortunately he is lacking in sympathy after being woken up at 3am because Mummy forgot her keys and how to act like a civilised human being.

wake up

The twins have swimming lessons at 10am and it is up to Mummy to get them there on time.

Capable Louise is there, on time, with her 50 well behaved children. Capable Louise has just been out for a run yet still looks dewy and serene in her expensive leisure gear.

well done louise2

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