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Tot Trumps

The title may have led you to believe this is about little people parps; well you can take a sigh of relief as this is not the case (in all honesty I’m not really convinced that would make a great read anyway).

So what do I mean by Tot Trumps? Well you may be familiar with Top Trumps, if not I shall let Wikipedia give you a quick brief;

“Top Trumps is a card game published in 1968. Each card contains a list of numerical data, and the aim of the game is to compare these values to try to trump and win an opponent’s card”Source, Wikipedia

Tot Trumps is exactly the same the only difference is that it relates to all things baby, toddlers, mums and dads.

Baby Vs Toddler Trumps

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Speed of eating – Baby 60 / Toddler 20

Once babies have got the gist of the wonder that is food there’s no stopping them, they can’t ram the stuff in quick enough. Granted some of the food doesn’t actually go in their mouths, but they’re trying their best to try all of those new textures and flavours. In stark contrast a toddler, a now esteemed pro, well ish, at food can give a tortoise a run for their money at taking forever to eat their chuffing food. Never before have the words ‘Eat your food’ need to be repeated on such an epic scale, and usually on a morning when you’re rushing to get ready for work.

Poo produced – Baby 75 / Toddler 65

It’s a well known fact that babies and toddlers can produce a fair bit of poo. How such small individuals can produce a dump the abominable snowman would be proud of, I’ll never know. But babies definitely win this round hands down. Their actual amount of bum nuggets may be lesser than that of a toddler, but the impact and explosion factor more than make up for it. When you physically have to cut a baby grow off your tiny child because they’ve formed a blast which could put Hiroshima to shame, the poo to child size ratio definitely outweighs that of a toddlers. When you’ve changed nine nappies before you’ve even stepped out of the door, you know they’re in with a good chance of winning the ‘Shit Machine of the Year Award’.

Whinge level – Baby 30 / Toddler 85

Babies haven’t really mastered the art of whinge, they generally cry more than whinge, but once they hit toddler/threenager age the whinge level is turned to full pelt, and boy do we know about it. What does whinge sound like? Think of Janice from Friends laugh, then times it by 20 and repeat at least 30 times a day. Now that’s annoying, painfully annoying. “I don’t want to eat off that plaaaaaaaaaaatttttttttteeeeeeee, it’s pink, waaaaahhhhhhhhh”; “It’s raining!!Waaaaaaaahhhhhhh!”; “I don’t want a baaaaaaaaaaatttthhhhhh!”; “I don’t want to wear those shooooooeeeeeeessssss!”. If the government bottled enough whinge they could have a serious defence weapon on their hands, parents all around the country would be raking it in. In reality whinge has no effective use other than being seriously fudging annoying.

Questions asked – Baby 0 / Toddler 99

Once again toddlers win this hands down. When they’re not asking a question they are thinking about their next question. If they are unable to think of anymore (as rare as a lunar eclipse) they turn to the trusty filler phrase we all know too well – “Mummmmyyyyy?” / “Daddddddyyyy?” Once those words leave their mouths we know in t-minus 3 seconds there’s going to be a “Can I have a biscuit?”, “Why do cows moo?”, “Can a cat and a dog have babies together?”, “Why is grass green?. We feel the panic, the pressure not to give them a bullshit answer and definitely not the “Just because…” answer (although after the 100th, ok then 50th question of the day this is a completely acceptable response). Google has possibly made most of its earnings based on panicked parents around the world. This is further proven by the fact if you type ‘Why’ in the search box; the first question to come up is ‘Why is the sky blue?’ now that has quizzed and unsure parent written all over it.

Mummy Vs Daddy Trumps

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Time to self – Mummy 20 / Daddy 60

What is this time to self thing? It sounds delightful. Once children arrive on the scene time to oneself is, well…limited.  A once very private visit to the porcelain throne is now a social gathering where the kids continuously fetch their detached toy car wheels, dried up Playdoh and usually the loudest VTech toy they can muster for your viewing ‘pleasure’; A hot cup of tea once leisurely sipped whilst relaxing on the sofa watching back to back episodes of ‘Masterchef’ is soon replaced by lukewarm tea drunk in between changing nappies, picking up toys, and watching ‘I Can Cook’. Its official the ‘time to self’ moments for a mummy are not exactly relaxing. During the very the rare moment when the kids nap (after a well deserved fist pump) do mums relax? Nope they do jobs, think washing the car, cleaning the house, painting, jet washing the patio, making the tea, scraping crusty Weetabix off the floor/chair/table etc. It’s a fact that some of us actually go to work for a break, the chance to drink a hot cup of tea and to have a wee in private, ah bliss. So where does Daddy time to self come into this? Well perhaps I should have called this Trump ‘Time spent on the toilet’ (No pun intended). Somehow Daddy’s toilet time is sacred and long, oh so bloody long. Seriously who takes that long to take a dump? In reality I think probably 30% is pooping time and 70% is faffing on phone time, but who can blame them, we all have to have our little pleasures when we can manage to grab them. It’s a fact, daddies can hands down beat baby and toddler in the pooping stakes.

Showers taken – Mummy 40 / Daddy 70

One of the most frustrating things a mum can experience is when Daddy walks in after a day at work and declares “I’m just off for a shower”, all made worse by the fact that mummy has spent all day at home with the kids and has had zero opportunity to get a clean (making a third day Glastonbury reveller look pristine). Poor mum has been waiting all day for that special Timote moment, yet he waltzes in clearly not picking up on the fact flies are now circling her. All to be made worse by the fact he’s going to spend at least 45 long minutes ‘having a poo’ before his rather lengthy shower *Rolls eyes*

Gym membership usage – Mummy 25 / Daddy 75

Happy Days, Cheeky Monkeys, Rascals just a few names of ‘Gyms’ this mummy has stepped into recently. These gyms don’t harbour the weightlifter’s, protein shake drinkers, and the lycra clad toned crew you’d normally associate with the gym, no these contain tired looking parents watching on whilst their children run around and swing on various items like chimps. The closest thing to exercise is the parent squat, ‘sit down to a drink of tea, stand up to go save child dangling from the top of the climbing frame, sit down to have a sip of tea, stand up to stop child pushing another child on account of them having sharing issues, sit down to have a sip of tea, stand up to retrieve child from the top of the climbing frame due to sudden declaration of needing a wee/poo, sit down to drink cold tea’. The only thing that comes out lighter at the end of the session is a purse. The regular gym usage is probably the reason why daddy Wobbles looks like a model off the front cover of Men’s Health and the regular Play Gym usage (and cake eating) is more than likely the reason mummy Wobbles looks more like a  Teletubby on the front of CBeebies Magazine.

Fun Factor – Mummy 65 / Daddy 85

It’s pretty hard to be fun and enthusiastic when your kids have just emptied their entire box of Paw Patrol jigsaw pieces all over the floor for the third time followed by an epic chalking session on the wall. It can be bloody frustrating and stressful at times so we have to be forgiven for not always wanting to build a giant cushion tower and being jumped on whilst the ‘bad’ guys go “POW POW POW! “. When mums are fun we really bloody are, baking cakes, making dinosaurs out of loo rolls, jumping in puddles, painting, and if we’re feeling really crazy we even let the kids mix the Playdoh. So what gives Daddy the edge? Well for one they’re daft as brushes, but they’re also a bit more inclined to take risks, and let’s face it kids love a bit of danger. The first time I saw my husband fling our little boy up in the air I nearly had a pulmonary, but my little boy couldn’t get enough “More, more!” We could probably all learn something from each other, perhaps us mums should be a little more wild and try not turn into the Riskinator (The risk assessment robot), dads maybe you could just adopt a little bit of Riskinators pre risk and safety analysis?

So there you have it, your introduction to the world of Tot Trumps. The only good thing around these days with the word Trump in.

Gem (aka ColleysWobbles)

This post was originally featured on Meet Other Mum’s #mumtribe

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The Parent Crap

I love my husband dearly, he’s my rock, and all that lovey dovey blurb… but some nights I want nothing more than to roundhouse him to the floor! (Before you start, I don’t condone violence and I would never actually do it, but imagining it in the style of a Peter Griffin/Family Guy cut away clip makes it ok, right?).

Tonight is a prime example. The two children (I’d once lovingly lugged around like an overweight gorilla for 18 long months, propelled into the world in the most undignified and painful way from my noo noo, and sacrificed my once pert boobs to) have told me more than enough times this evening, “No Mummy I don’t want you I want Daddyyyyyyy!!!” accompanied with a scowl the grumpy cat would be proud of.

Granted, it’s not entirely Daddy’s fault he is awesome and very cuddly, but it still doesn’t stop me from wanting to get all Chuck Norris on his ass!

All I wanted was a cuddle, but instead I got a wriggling octopus with a one word Daddy Dictionary. Grrr!

So yes, I’ll put my hands up and admit it. I’m jealous! How does he do it? Am I doing something wrong? Am I too strict? Is it because I’ve gone back to work and they’re mad at me? Is it because they genuinely don’t love me as much? #mumguilt

In all honestly I don’t know why. I am however starting to realise that life as a family isn’t all Von Trap sing-alongs whilst parading through the meadows hand in hand, and I’d question anyone who said otherwise.

The faultless pictures you see on Instagram aren’t real. Mr and Mrs Perfect’s model family photo frolicking in a strawberry field was probably taken on their twenty second attempt on account of joyful Johnny shoving strawberries up his nose and sweet Susie flashing her knickers for the thirtieth time.

Before we had the boys I remember saying to people “We never argue, we get on so well, we’re best mates, blah blah blah“. Post kids, were still best mates, but argue? We do now. I’m not talking the dramatic Eastenders throwing plates at the wall “Ger art of ma pub!” type arguing, but we do have our disagreements and fall outs like most people. Why? Here’s a bit of parental maths:

cook-offAnother thing that adds to the ‘parent crap’ is the resentment. I never thought I’d resent their Daddy for going to work, but I remember thinking he was staying late at work to check out the hot toned girls who actually had time for the gym (unlike his baby bellied wife). I thought it was his way to avoid the crazy bedtime routine, but in actual reality he was working his backside off to pay bills and keep his job.

On the flip side he resented me for staying at home with his two little boys having all of that time to make memories whilst he was at work. A vicious cycle. The only way to avoid it crumbling is to tell yourself your both in it together. You’re a team. A family team.

So whether my little snot rockets are Daddy’s boys or Mummy’s boys it doesn’t matter, we’re a team, a unit, and they will have our undying love until the day we are no more.

(Seriously though kids, you best start giving me more cuddles or Daddy’s never going to get another cup of tea).

Gem x

I’m very proud to be part of the Meet Other Mums #blogsquad you can find my original blog on their fantastic webpage http://meetothermums.com

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Champagne Super No Way


We’ve had this very posh plonk for nearly a year so it seemed wrong not to drink it on a night away from parental duties. 
Will it be drunk on a yacht whilst bikini clad babes and six pack toned hunks parade their assets whilst listening to the latest funky house beats from a French DJ spotting a man bun and ray bans? 

No, it will be drunk lukewarm from plastic wine glasses in a standard double hotel room (bought through Groupon of course, we’re not made of money you know) whilst watching the Chase and Pointless. Why I hear you ask? Because that’s how we roll, it’s time to wind down, and quite honestly we’ve forgotten what it’s like not to be asked for cheese and juice every two minutes.

Gone are the days of bikini clad yacht posing (although if I’m honest I’ve never done it, the closest I ever got was having a cup of tea on the ferry to Bruges). This is reality, and I’m good with that. 

Cheers everyone! 

Gem x

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The Liebster Award

This week the lovely Sarah (@mamawifeyavery) from To Maternity and Beyond nominated me for a Liebster Award. Thank you Sarah 🙂

Apologies to any of my other lovely followers who have also nominated me for this already and I haven’t reciprocated. The past few months have been busy ones and this has been the first opportunity I’ve had chance to return the favour.

So what is The Liebster Award? Well it’s a way of finding out more about bloggers you are interested in by asking them a set of questions. So here goes.

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The rules are:

  • Thank the person who nominated you and post a link to their blog in your post.
  • Show the award on your blog or in your post.
  • Answer the 11 questions asked by the person who nominated you.
  • Write 11 random facts about yourself.
  • Nominate 5-11 bloggers that you feel deserve the award.
  • Create a list of new questions for your nominees to answer.
  • Once your blog is published, let your nominees know that they have been nominated and link them to your post for more details.

My Answers to Sarah’s Questions:

Why did you start your blog?

Back in July 2015 I made a bit of a boob (literally) of myself. I basically breastfed my little boy quite a while after having a fake tan (stupid I know), and cue a little Desperate Dan like face (but don’t worry it rubbed straight off and he was absolutely fine). Seeing the humorous side I added the picture along with a light hearted warning to fellow mummies onto The Unmumsy Mums page on Facebook. Little did I know the picture was going to go completely viral. After receiving an amazing response (and a few not so amazing) from people all over the world I wanted to share my side of the story. I’d always had a passion for writing, and as a mum to two boys on maternity leave, my brain needed a serious recharge. So what better way to start my blogging adventure, and so they say, the rest is history.

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If you won the lottery tomorrow, what’s the first thing you’d buy?

A  first class trip to Australia. Myself and the hubby spent an amazing year there in 2006. We’d love go back and take our family to see the one and only Osborns (the nicest people in the world). It would be wonderful to see our boys playing with their children, and for the family to enjoy all of the special places/experiences we did 10 years ago (where did that time go?).

Describe your perfect Saturday night in.

Now Ant & Dec’s Saturday Night Takeaway and Take Me Out (No likey, no lighty) is on, Saturday nights are complete. Just add a lovely meal (occasional takeaway, would be rude not to); the hubster (preferably wearing very little); a nice bottle of prosecco and twinkly lights/candles. Perfect.

Who is your favourite author?

Currently Sarah Turner – The Unmumsy Mum. An absolutely hilarious and incredibly true account of motherhood. I spent most of the time reading the book and nodding away like Churchill the dog. Some truly laugh out loud moments, and some very heartfelt ones. It’s nice to know that no one’s perfect (regardless of what their Instagram page may lead us to believe) and admit that parenting is no walk in the park.

Previous to Mrs Turner, I love a good bit of Bill Bryson, learn whilst wetting yourself with laughter.Image result for bill bryson books I also love reading the boys Julia Donaldson books. Fantastic rhymes and always a lovely story. What more could you want from a book?

Where did you last go on holiday?

We last went on holiday to a gorgeous all inclusive called the Crystal Palace (no not the football stadium) in Side, Turkey.  5 star luxury with no cleaning, washing up, or cooking to do (but still nappy changing, chasing after children and dealing with whining, well we can’t have everything can we). Great hotel, couldn’t recommend it enough. I actually started to write a blog about the comparisons of holidays pre and post kids, but have still yet to publish it. Keep your eyes peeled.

What is your dream job?

As a child I spent a bit of time in the children’s hospital so I’d always wanted to be a nurse or in a role of a caring nature. However, the older I’ve become the more fearful I am of sick, blood and guts, that and the fact I don’t think I could cope with the emotional strain the role brings. What a bloody hard job, I salute every nurse, doctor, midwife and carer out there. Thank you for what you do. You are real life heroes. You deserve so much more.

Cheese or chocolate?

Although I am partial to the odd bar of chocolate, I’m a cheese girl all the way. Halloumi, brie, Camembert, cheddar, Gruyère, Port Salut, Feta, Gouda, Wensleydale (I’m a Yorkshire lass after all), Emmental, mozzarella, it doesn’t matter, just get in my belly!

What was the last thing you saw at the cinema?

A trip to the cinema these days is a rarity. We did take our son to see The Peppa Pig Movie for his second birthday *sigh*. Although if I have to be completely honest I think we quite enjoyed it too (but shhh don’t tell anyone). The most recent grown up film we saw was Spectre, who doesn’t love a bit of Bond, James Bond? We were well impressed with the fact one of our local cinemas had had a complete luxury upgrade and we were welcomed with plush leather reclining seats. Cinemas have come a long way since the chewing gum encrusted, none-reclining, neck breaking naff upholstered seats.

                               

If you had the opportunity to go into space would you take it?

If there was a guaranteed chance I would return in one piece to my family, then hell yes. An absolute once in a lifetime opportunity. What an amazing experience. Although I’m not sure how I’d cope in one of those g-force whizzymibobbies they test you in first. Bleurgh! Plus how do you wee or poop in space? 

What is your favourite thing to cook?

I love cooking full stop, but if I had to choose I’d say a good Sunday roast. Lots of different elements which can be mixed up week to week. Varied meat, varied veg and not to forget it involves my favourite, the Yorkshire pudding. 

Who would play you in a movie about your life?

It would be a pretty boring film, I’m not even sure the plush leather seats would keep people seated. Although if I could choose an actress to play me I’d have to have a comedy actress such as Sandra Bullock or Kristen Wiig. What would life be without laughter?
  

11 Random Facts About Me

  1. I used to dress as a giant squirrel and walk/dance around the office. I’m not a furry (watch the Channel 4 doc if you need clarification), but I bloody loved every sweaty minute in that Squirrel suit. *This is the actual costume*SQUIRREL MASCOT COSTUME
  2. I’m currently in the process of creating and illustrating a children’s picture book with my very talented and lovely partner in Rhyme Rhyming with Wine. Keep your eyes peeled and hopefully coming to a book shop near you.
  3. I was lucky enough to meet Jonny Wilkinson *swoon* and his fellow England Rugby Union team mates *double swoon* at a Corporate event I supported with in one of my previous careers.  
  4. You may find me on your TV screens soon (namely on E4’s Virtually Famous). All due to my rather slack tanning incident. I’ve actually wrote a blog about the experience as there’s a high possibility I may look like a complete douche (you can find out why here).IMG_0311-0
  5. I hate bad spelling/grammar (although I’ve no doubt I’ll regret saying this I’m sure you’ll make me aware of my mistakes now). I’m talking their, there, they’re and your, you’re. Grrr!
  6. I’m left handed, and so they say this makes you creative. Which I like to think I am.
  7. I got offered a job to work as a Beauty Therapist at Ragdale Hall Health Hall Hydro, but fell in love and went to Australia instead.
  8. I’m a total magpie and love anything that sparkles or glitters (I was meant to be a Gem).
  9. I have a ‘thing’ for monkeys and apes. My husband took me to Monkey World for my 25th birthday. Bloody loved it and we’re hoping to return one day with our two little monkeys.
  10. I have Trypophobia (a fear of things with lots of holes in). Yes this is seriously a thing. It makes me totally cringe, especially those bloody fake boob lotus plant things that keep appearing on Facebook.
  11. I once dropped a huge round table on my foot whilst setting up for our wedding do (we got married abroad so had a party at home too) a bit of a swollen foot and a bandage later and I was good to go, still danced the night away. 

I Would Like to Nominate:

Rhyming with Wine

A Moment with Franca

Tayla

This Mums Life

CuddleFairy

Mummy’s Beans

Wee Monkey and Me

Geri Cobwebs

Mudpie Fridays

Leo Lionman & Mummy

My 11 Questions

  1. If you could have three people (dead or alive) round for dinner who would they be and why?
  2. What’s your most embarrassing moment?
  3. What do you think makes a good blogger?
  4. What’s your favourite place in the world?
  5. Who’s your celebrity crush?
  6. What’s your favourite film?
  7. Which is your favourite book to read to your child(ren)?
  8. Why do you write a blog?
  9. The Goonies, Gremlins, or Ghostbusters?
  10. Justin Bieber, yay or nay?
  11. What is your proudest moment/achievement?

Well there it is. I hope you enjoyed it and I look forward to reading yours and learning a little bit more about you.

Gem x

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10 Things Mums Wished Were True

  1. Men love boobs that no longer defy gravity and give sad fried eggs a run for their money.IMG_2062
  2. The bath is the holy grail – a place where no one can interrupt, nag, whinge at or bother you. A no rubber duck zone, only candles, bubbles (of the bath and prosecco type) and chilled anthems allowed.IMG_2064
  3. Un-shaved legs are super sexy. Men love that extra layer of cosiness.IMG_2065
  4. Black leggings are the height of fashion, especially if splattered with sick, bogeys, drool, and any general food remnants.IMG_2058
  5. Saying “No” or “Aah aah aah” will instantly stop any babies/children in their tracks – immediate obedience and mischief is deterred.IMG_2072
  6. Cbeebies is presented by the cast of Magic Mike.IMG_2061
  7. NCT classes and the like offer wine and cake instead of tea and coffee.IMG_2066
  8. All children’s bedroom doors have invisible force fields to prevent any pre 7am visits and parent bed invasions.IMG_2067
  9. Every kitchen has an invisible layer of regenerative cling film on the kitchen floor, so after feeding time you simply whip it away and boom, the mountain of crumbs is gone. No crawling on your hands and knees or dust pans and brushes required.IMG_2068
  10. The TV remote also has a child mode with a volume button (no more wheels on the bus at 6am on a Sunday morning after your first night out with the girls); a pause button (for when you need to get a few jobs done, have a wee, or sit down and enjoy a cuppa without it going cold); a rewind button (to enjoy and re-live those funny and special moments); a fast forward button (to zoom past those whingy, tantruming, and generally difficult moments); a play button (making the children in your life happily sit and play without a single utterance of “That’s mine“, “I was playing with that!“, “Mummy he’s/she’s playing with my toy“); an info button (a synopsis explaining the baby/child’s current mood, thoughts, and feelings); a help button (used to provide useful information on how to resolve any meltdowns and general issues with minimal fuss); and a record button (to make a permanent record of all the magical times we’ve shared with our little people, so we can reminisce in years to come).IMG_2069

We can all keep dreaming can’t we? It’s nice to dream.

Gem x

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A Guide to Cleaning the Bathroom with a Toddler and a Baby

We’ve all been there, the bathroom’s been ignored for too long, and you can no longer stand the sight of the scum that’s forming around the taps, and the bath toys which now seem to be dominating the bath.

I’ve partly ignored mine because the thought of scrubbing round all those awkward nooks and crannies fills me with dread, but more so because I never seem to get the chance having very two active boys following, and watching my every move. However, today like a fearless knight ready to do battle, I’ve donned my marigolds and grabbed the bleach. With two boys in tow, here is my ‘How to’ on cleaning the bathroom with a toddler, and a baby.

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Step One

Parent: Equip yourself with the relevant cleaning paraphernalia, e.g. Bleach, glass cleaner, cloths etc.

Children: Point to the said paraphernalia and continuously ask, ‘What’s that mummy?‘, ‘What’s that one mummy?‘, ‘What about that one mummy?‘.

Step Two

Parent: Place the cleaning products high on a shelf so your little angels can’t reach them. We don’t want any trips to A&E or worse.

Children: Try your very hardest to reach the interesting looking bottles mummy has just put on the shelf, risking life and limb in the process.

Step Three

Parent: Place the baby in the door bouncer so you can see him, and clean in the comfort knowing your toddler isn’t a) sitting on him, b) trying to ride him, or c) smothering him with a teddy. Meanwhile set up the toddlers Thomas the Tank Engine train set (in a very simple oval form, I don’t have all the time in the world you know) in his bedroom. Put a kids playlist from Spotify on, and that should entertain them for the duration of cleaning. Return to the bathroom and the let cleaning commence.

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Children: Baby – Bounce to your hearts content or for about ten minutes until you fall asleep (how can you possibly bounce yourself to sleep?) Get taken by mummy to cot for a snooze.

Toddler – Play with the Thomas track for approximately 4 minutes before asking your mummy for a biscuit. Eat the biscuit, play for another 4 minutes with the occasional Godzilla kick to Thomas and Harold’s carriages. Go into the bathroom and ask ‘What you doing Mummy?‘, ‘Why?‘, ‘Are you a cleaner?‘. Return to playing for another few minutes then threaten to open sleeping brothers bedroom door and wake him up. Get told off by Mummy. Throw a quick tantrum, pick nose, then return to playing trains.

Step Four

Parent: Clean for approximately 10 minutes before having to remove marigolds to recover sleeping baby from his bouncer, and take him to his cot for a nap. Return to clean bathroom for about 4 minutes before having to venture back downstairs to the kitchen for a biscuit for your bottomless pit of a toddler. Return to cleaning, occasionally having to stop to check what the crashing noises from the toddlers room are. Tell toddler to stop acting like Godzilla, and to look after his toys. Return to cleaning for about two minutes, then answer various questions from toddler, ‘I’m cleaning‘, ‘Because after a while things start to get mucky and need cleaning‘, ‘No I’m not a cleaner, but sometimes I feel like I might as well be‘. Return to cleaning only to have to stop and shout ‘No‘ before the toddler wakes his brother up. Deal with a tantrum, then explain why you told the toddler off. Return to cleaning.

Children: Baby – Wake up from short nap and make random shouty noises so mummy will hear me.

Step Five

Parent: Stop cleaning again on account of waking and shouty baby. Cuddle baby then check time realising it’s lunchtime. Hang up cleaning gloves in order to be a chef, and cook lunch for hungry little people. Give little people food, quickly eat some food yourself, clean little faces and hands, then sweep up crumbs and 10% of lunch from floor. Put a bit of CBeebies on for the kids, watch Mr Tumble prat about in various guises whilst you sit and try to enjoy a cup of coffee.

Children: Toddler – Whine ‘I’m hungry‘ at mummy whilst she tries to make lunch. Ask ‘Where’s my lunch?‘ a couple more times just in case she didn’t hear the first five times. Take a few random toys to mummy and ask her to hold them. Get incredibly excited when food is finally ready, then dissect it like a biology student.

Baby – Throw a few random bits of food on the floor then mash a bit of cheese in hair. Screw face up at having face wiped then stare at mummy on her hands and knees whilst cleaning up previous handiwork.

Toddler – Watch Mr Tumble in awe whilst your little brother touches everything on the hearth.

Step Six

Parent: Move baby away from the hearth for what feels like the twentieth time. Finish drinking coffee, decide it’s time for round two of cleaning after over exposure to irritating Cbeebies songs ‘Show me, show me, blah blah blah‘. Set up kids for round two of cleaning. Toddler playing nicely with trains once again, and baby happily playing with annoying ‘I’m a friendly lighter bear‘ toy. Marigolds on cloth in hand time to tackle the rest.

Children: Toddler – ‘Yey! Show Me, Show Me is on. Aww Mummy’s turned it off. Nooo. Oh well more trains. Sounds good to me‘.

Baby – ‘What is this annoying bear thing? You’re a friendly what?

Toddler – Take a huge dump in nappy then proceed to run around mashing it up without announcing it to mummy.

Step Seven

Parent: Whilst cleaning, get a whiff of what can only be described as dog food mixed with turnips and old cabbage. Sniff baby’s bottom like a trained police dog, no sign. Ask toddler if he’s done the deed to be welcomed with denial. Chase after toddler and change said nappy trying hard not to gag. Happily return to the bleach smell in the bathroom and complete cleaning with no further interruptions.

Children: Take various toys into the bathroom and mess room up as soon as it’s been cleaned.

IMG_0737So there you have it, a simple step guide to cleaning your bathroom with a toddler and baby in tow. A stark contrast to the hour it used to take me pre-children. It’s ironic that pre-children, the bathroom was probably in less need of cleaning, but got cleaned twice, if not three times more than a post children bathroom. It just goes to show the lack of opportunity and increased amount of effort that’s required, can really hamper my desire for a sparkly clean bathroom.

It may have taken me half the day, but by George it looks clean now, unfortunately the same can’t be said about the rest of the house.

It’s a constant cycle. Sigh!

Gem x

Babies, Parenting, Toddlers

Nobody’s Perfect

About two weeks ago I made an ‘epic fail’ and boy do I know about it. To cut a long story short I had a spray tan, then about four hours later I breastfed my son (dumb I know, but when you’re on auto-pilot and have a serious case of baby brain, what can I say, shit happens), the result a little man with a five o’clock shadow, and a very guilty mummy. After seeing the funny side, I decided to post a picture of my little man on my personal Facebook page. I received an amazing reaction from friends

Literally choked on my cup of tea! It’s a baby Homer Simpson!

This has made my day I do things like this all the time, what a little sweetheart. Love that you shared this, mummy’s everywhere will be smiling as they can fully relate! Bad mummy? never! A mum trying her best to multitask, always!

Great reaction right? So why not make some other parents feel a little bit better about themselves and make a few people laugh in the process? That said, I decided to post the photo onto The Unmumsy Mum Facebook page.

I first discovered The Unmumsy Mum after reading her An Open Letter To The Mum With The Red Coat blog, amazing, so honest and real. A mum that’s normal. Someone who finally admits it’s not all roses. Even though I wasn’t the mum in the red coat, I could also completely put myself in her shoes, as I’m sure most of us can. The Unmumsy Mum nails it (as she always does) when she says ‘We are all in this together‘. We certainly are, we’re all just trying our very hardest to mold the best human beings we can, although with that great responsibility also comes poobombs, puke, pee fountains, crying babies the moment you go into a deep sleep, and toddlers whining about not having their favorite fire engine toy at 6am (thanks son number 1), and that’s only a small percentage of things a parent has to experience. So she had me at hello, I needed to read more. If you haven’t already discovered her, then you know what to do.

I posted the picture on The Unmumsy Mum’s Facebook page along with the below quote;

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From one mum to another, I’d like to let you know about my epic fail of fails. Yesterday I had a spray tan, a few hours later I breastfed my little boy. Cue 5 o’clock shadow and a very guilty mummy. Lesson to you all. Don’t do this

What happened next? Absolute craziness. By the end of the day the post had received over 100,000 likes. At that point I was sat literally shaking thinking ‘What have I done?’. Suffice to say I didn’t sleep very well that night. I never for a second expected it to get the reaction it did, and only ever thought it might have got at most 100 likes. If I’d have known that in hindsight would I have still posted it? Yes and no. Yes, on the basis I made a lot of people laugh and realise we all mistakes, not to mention all those mums out there who may have been thinking about getting a spray tan (I’ve saved them the trouble of making the same mistake). No, on the basis that I put my baby out there, his face is worldwide. My little man been judged by thousands of people. I also recieved a fair bit of abuse, a small percentage in comparison to the positive comments though. So what abuse did I receive? A number of people telling me I shouldn’t be allowed to be a parent, I was selfish for getting a spray tan and should spend my time with my boys, I’d intentionally poisoned my son with chemicals, I’m the worst mum in the world, I was a f*&%ing whore, and I’d given him cancer. Some nice folks out there. So let me set you straight folks. I have given life to two gorgeous boys, so I’m sorry I am already a parent, twice, my bad! And you know what I don’t think I’m all that bad. Yes I occasionally forget things, lose my shit, give my eldest (two and a half) one too many biscuits, and occasionally let the CBeebies presenters babysit, but I’d hardly say that constitutes as the worst mum in the world. lf the worst thing I can do is give my baby an unintentional 5 o’clock shadow, I don’t think I’ve done too bad. Especially considering there are crack addict mums out there who don’t see an issue with leaving needles in close proximity to their children. Puts it into perspective doesn’t it? For the ones who said I was selfish for having a spray tan, well god forbid a mum should take a bit of time out for herself. I forgot I should have them both attached by umbilical cord until they reach their 18th birthdays. I love spending time with my boys, but occasionally I need a break, not a crime. One of the recent ‘breaks’ I took was when I jet washed the patio whilst my husband entertained the kids in the garden. Ah pure bliss. Let’s face it when the kids aren’t attached, it’s an opportunity to deal with the pile of dust building on the TV, clean the layers of porridge off the baby’s high chair, and get any general jobs done whilst you have two arms free. So yes, I’m sorry I took twenty minutes out to get a spray tan so I wouldn’t look like a washed out banana in the bright yellow dress I’d bought for a wedding. In regards to the trolls/keyboard warriors. All I can say to you is ‘get a frigging life!’, if the only thing you get kicks from is writing abusive messages to people you know nothing about, then wow I really think you need to take a long hard look in the mirror. I’m really sorry I didn’t react to your messages because you are not worth my time, thought or effort. If this experience has made me realise one thing, it’s that I’m not as soft as I thought I was. Water off a ducks back.

On a more positive note I want to say thank you to all the lovely people out there who sent me messages, made comments, and also shared their ‘epic fail’ stories, and experiences. Other people not afraid to admit we are not perfect. I am so glad I made you laugh, and brightened your day. That was all I ever set out to do, just on a much smaller scale. Never did I think I’d see a day where my face appeared in the Daily Mail, NBC news, or on the brillant lad bible. It was certainly an experience, but now it’s today’s fish and chip shop wrapping and I’m good with that. But I will promise you this, the paper clippings will be coming out for his 21st birthday.

Gem x

Nobody is superior, nobody is inferior, but nobody is equal either. People are simply unique, incomparable, you are you, I am I – Osho

Mudpie Fridays