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How to Make Spaghetti Bolognese

A guest post from the very funny What Mum Should Have Told Me:

‘Get your fingers out of the cat food young lady and don’t even think about putting them in your… Oh. They’re in your mouth. Wonderful.’

I had such high hopes about mealtimes before I had my children. I had dreams…variety, vitamins, hearty, wholesome, home-cooked. After 6 six years of torture, I throw my hands up and admit that teatime more often than not involves chasing my youngest across the length and breadth of the house, to get her to sit at the table; negotiating with my eldest about how much of his food he has to eat (before it even arrives) and my middle child, well, I lie to her. A lot.

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secret to a happy marriage“I take you to be my lawfully wedded husband, to have and to hold, from this day forward, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, until death do us part.”

Well, yes, that too of course…

But since making those vows – or more to the point since having a child – our marriage has changed somewhat. It’s not that I don’t love my husband for better or worse, it’s more I just need him to be better when I am feeling worse. And vice versa.

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Mother Wars – Really?

mother warsDo you know what? I am starting to get really sick of being fed a load of twaddle about mothers not supporting each other. Every other damn headline – be it parenting website, blog or even national newspaper – seems to be about some apparent bone of contention between women and the choices they make in parenting.

I first heard of the ‘Mommy Wars’ a good while back – it was in association with Gwyneth Paltrow’s alleged put-down on the typical mother’s working week or some such. It seemed to be me mainly an American idea and all quite far from my doorstep really.

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guest mummy spits dummy picA Guest Post from the brilliantly talented Julie at
Mummy Spits the Dummy:

“Oh, how I wish I could go back to the days when I was a parenting expert. Before I had to live with actual children, I had all the answers to all the childrearing questions – even if nobody bothered to ASK me the questions, tsk! So much unsolicited advice and silent judgement. So many apologies I now owe to friends who had kids before I did.

Here is an abridged list of the Things I Would Never Do, Things I Would Never Let My Children Do, and Things I Outright Judged You For before my own children arrived.

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“See the tired mummies* sleeping ‘til it’s nearly dawngro3
Shall we try and wake them, as it’s nearly morn?
Hear them snore… what a bore… Shush…
Hop tired mummies, hop, hop, hop. Stop tired mummies – not, not, not.
Up tired mummies, up, up, up. UP. UP. UP.”

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The Imperfect Parents Club

imperfect parents clubI snapped at you today. A few times actually – in the space of ten minutes – do you remember? I hope not. You were eating lunch and I had a work email I had to respond to quickly. I needed to concentrate whereas you needed to rub yoghurt in your hair and shout repeatedly that your hands were mucky.

It isn’t your fault that I’m trying to build my work around building you.

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Alternate Spa Day for Parents

alternate spa dayIt is 3 PM on a Tuesday afternoon and I am Bone. Tired. Like: as weary as a badger, as knackered as a gnat.

I’d also like to point out that I’d be more effective at simile use if I was better rested. Probably.

I was up until late last night – and the night before that – working, then had a toddler in my face (quite literally) from 1 AM until 4 AM. I am hard-pressed to choose which was worse: the 2-year-old kicks in the nose, ribs and head or the incessant demand for ‘Tele’ at 230 AM when I had to try really hard not to beat myself over the head with the alarm clock until I passed out, instead of repeated whispers of ‘sleepy time, darling.’

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HEATWAVEI love summer, of course. Everyone loves summer: spending more time outside is good for us and there is always more to do. Then, during the five or so days a year of ‘proper summer’ – AKA heatwave territory, things ramp up a gear and we get to feel like we’re on a foreign holiday at home – for free – amazing! It is also important during this period to post lots of natural (forced) and happy (pre-meltdown) photos on Facebook and Instagram, and NEVER complain that it is too hot however uncomfortable you may be… this is sacrilege to the cloudless sky gods.

Anyway, there’s nothing to complain about because sunshine puts everyone in a better mood – especially young children. It’s all they need to be happy; along with constant entertainment and being kept cool, covered, watered, refreshed and rested. And they make all of this so easy to do, of course…

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Hangover + Small Children

hangover1Things That Work Together

Gin + Tonic = A Relaxed Fizzy Sigh

Friends + Cocktails = Laughing & Fun & Inevitably… Behaving Like a Bit of a Loser

2 AM + Chip shop = Unhealthy, Unnecessary and Quite a Frightening Sight But Essential Nonetheless*


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Happy Father’s Day – A Poem

fathers dayAs a break from bemoaning the lack of reasonable behaviour from my toddler – and because it’s Father’s Day this weekend – I thought a spot of sincerity was in order, as did my two-year-old. I admit he did need a little bit of help with the typing – his efforts not being bad as such bar a few errors.

SsikjisjjndvgjsSIDAFJnhlkl94 He knows what he’s writing though, apparently.

And I may have paraphrased his words ever so slightly for optimum effect; but otherwise, it’s all him. Sort of.

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Following on from the last Totsnet, some other babies and toddlers take their turn at rants and reassurance from their peers about their parental totsnet smallwoes…

I’m still quivering with rage about this but will try and explain without getting too upset by the flashbacks. So I was given a banana today and – oh God I can barely bring myself to say it… my mum peeled back the skin 1/2 a centimetre further than I wanted her to… I KNOW! I don’t know how it all went so terribly wrong as she seemed to be acting so cautiously at first (this isn’t the first time we’ve had this issue). But then I screamed in anger as she hadn’t peeled it back enough –

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