Wednesday, 30 November 2011

The Sorry Tale of the Penguin Biscuit....

It's that wonderful time of the year...or so the adverts keep telling us. Yep, the school parties and pantos will soon be upon us again. The...school...party.......if you read an earlier post you will be aware that the one I witnessed last year was a ruddy miserable affair with baldy fairy cakes and an overload of tangerines. Our nutcase Council are paranoid about healthy eating to the point that the are no longer to be respected more snickered at for rules which flaunt basic, common sense.  I bet the person who makes them is sitting at their desk, weighing about twenty stone, and stuffing their chops with a bumper sized box of Celebrations.  It got me thinking about the parties I used to go to at school with egg sandwiches and ice cream.  I hate egg sandwiches but in retrospect they seemed preferable to the stuff on last years plates. It reminded me of a time I was sent to the Sunday School party,  held for some reason, at the local masonic hall.  As usual the paper plates were handed out containing amongst other things, sandwiches and Penguin biscuits. That was the day I discovered I didn't like Penguins. I took a bite and put it back on the plate, but couldn't just leave it there. Being the paranoid child I was, I thought I would get a row for wasting food,  so decided to go to the toilet and flush it down the lavvy. WHY DO WE DO THESE STUPID THINGS AS KIDS?  I remember flushing and it not going. There it was, a biscuit shaped turd-a-like twirling in the bowl.  I flushed for all I was worth but still the ruddy thing wouldn't navigate the U-bend. At that point I wished I had just eaten it in the first place and been done with it. I sneaked back to the party and spent the rest of it sweating. I had visions of some old maid Sunday school teacher coming back from the loos, horn rimmed specs askew, with a look of revulsion on her face, demanding that the culprit own up to their sin....


 And for anyone who has forgotten about what a real school party was like, here's a genuine photo of one of mine taken prior to the days of prohibition. (Complete with egg sannies and ice cream).  As you can see we were all enjoying ourselves so much the local press had to come and get a photo......obviously our taste in food was sublime, our taste in clothing....not so much..... Apologies for the newspaper cutting, it's virtually an antique.


Tuesday, 29 November 2011

If Carlsberg did Sleepovers......

L was ten on Saturday.  I can't believe it is ten years since she was born. Every day I wake up I am eternally grateful for her presence in my life. Even at her worst she is the most beautiful thing I have ever seen and at her best I truly can't believe that I could have produced her.

As a result of her reaching double figures she asked if she could have a sleepover. Oh joy!  Given the fact that she has been at her friends for their birthdays I felt obliged to comply. So the dining room was decorated with a pink, spotted tablecloth, pink and white bunting, matching paper tableware and the table was littered with party poppers.  Entertainment was painting snowmen mugs to be returned to the local pottery for firing the next day, glitter tattoos and bracelet making. How glad am I that I once took Brownies?  Five girls for a one night sleepover should be a doddle, after all I used to do twenty four for a full weekend. That was nothing short of torture. And I was insane enough to do it four times. After the very first night I recall sitting zombiefied at breakfast (we had two wet beds, a vomit splattered sleeping bag and a guider who snored) thinking that I had woken up in hell. So five I thought  would be 'no problemo' - I hoped. I borrowed J's blow up camping beds so they could sleep in the living room.

A good time was had by all with no fights and the girls were kept amused. It's amazing though what you hear when you are listening to kids conversations. L had 'Tangled' to watch for bedtime. Her choice and the girls were keen to watch it too.  I overheard two of them telling L and her pal J (who sat with their eyes goggling) that they had watched 'Paranormal Activity' at someone else's sleepover.  I  simmered inwardly at the irresponsibility of some parents. Fine if you want your kids to watch stuff that is going to scare them s**tless on you go. However if L had come back from somewhere and told me she had watched that,  A. she wouldn't have slept for a week and B. the film wouldn't have been the only scary thing the folks responsible would have witnessed........

After a breakfast of bacon rolls and croissants, and a jewellery making session,  they departed at midday.  I stared at the general detritus.  Party popper streamers clung to the curtains and carpets. The kitchen looked like a bombsite. To make matters worse I knew I was getting H's flu thingy he has had for the past week. I set to work quickly to clear the devastation. That way I knew I could die quietly in the corner later on....

If Carlsberg did sleepovers......

Wednesday, 23 November 2011

The Aliens are Coming.......

A strange experience the other night. H has been unwell since Sunday.  Horrible cough, high temperature and sore head. Took the decision to keep him off school on Monday as he looked pale and feverish. Settled him on the couch for the day, fed him paracetamol and let him rest. All quiet on the western front.  That was until two in the morning. I woke to hear strange mumblings and got up, in zombified state, to investigate. It didn't take long to wake up. He was wandering about on top of his cabin bed like a wild child, wet with sweat, hair standing on end and eyes like bullets. Slightly disconcerting. I tried to get him to sit down as he ranted about 'sleeping in your bed Mum'. H never wants to sleep in our bed (thankfully) but was having none of it. He then started to point in terror at his pyjama case and shrieked ' I need to sleep in your bed because of that!' When I asked him what was wrong he freaked out wailing, 'It's that flying saucer, it's coming for me!' Oh dear. Just a tad disturbing. It made me think of that scene in Close Encounters when the wee boy is abducted. I stood waiting for his electronic toys to start wandering about the bedroom and bright lights to appear. Nothing....  Stuck him in the bed and accepted the fact I was unlikely to have a comfortable night.......

The passports finally arrived today and fortunately due to the placement of the hologram I do not look too horrific. Congratulating myself that I might just make in through immigration I switched on the telly to see that Thomas Cook is in a dodgy way with debts in excess of £900 million. Heck. Makes the mortgage seem manageable. Then the horrible truth dawned.......we have booked our holiday through 'Going Places' owned by, you've guessed it, Thomas Cook. Next month we have to part with our holiday balance, Christmas Eve to be exact. According to a company spokesman, 'it is 'business as usual'. Yeah, seem to have heard that one somewhere before. Oh that's right. When they kicked my old boss Fred the Shred out the door of a certain distinguished Scottish bank....

Tuesday, 22 November 2011

To Santa or Not to Santa........

Well it is definitely official. I am a total nutter -or so it would appear. At a school meeting last night and happened to make the mistake of saying that the kids still believe in Santa. Cue guffaws and some one's comment of  'What a crock...'. H stills believes (he is seven),  L,  I doubt does, but pretends to and would never be cruel enough to ruin H's illusions.  A few years back, when L was six, she asked me if  Santa was real ' because ****'s mum told her it was her that bought her presents.' On the spur of the moment I laughed and said 'of course not, but her mum and dad will have to buy her presents if she doesn't believe.' Another parent had 'never done the Santa thing'. When did it become a crime to enjoy a little magic with your kids? I left feeling sad at their attitudes and wondering if I am in the wrong to let the kids enjoy something fun and exciting. Then of course self doubt crept in and I began to wonder about my own abilities as a parent. Is it wrong to tell them something that is a fantasy?  I have come to the conclusion that maybe I am extremely juvenile (probably), but if my only crime is to pretend Santa exists then I am guilty as charged .  Mr 'What a crock' then proceeded to moan about having to trail Disney theme parks for his holidays this year. Poor diddums. And I thought it was only kids who were spoiled brats!  I, on the other hand can't wait.  If I am a Santa and Mickey loving nutter then so be it. Better than being an unenthusiastic, boring old fart incapable of entering into the spirit of things.....

What a cynical world we live in... I'm off to dig out my Mickey ears in preparation for next March........

Monday, 21 November 2011

Christmas is coming,.......

For once I am actually proud of myself. I am speeding ahead with my Christmas shopping. Last year was a total nightmare but this year I have embraced the wonder that is Amazon and am now doing my shopping online and getting the whole sodding lot delivered to my door. FOR FREE! And for that matter,  cheaper as well. No sore feet, being crushed in shops, having your hands lacerated by heavy poly bags or being verbally abused by someone because you just happen to bump into them by mistake. Bliss! Last year was stressful to say the least. L had the flu and was off school for the whole week before Christmas, S had it and fortunately was on holiday,  but moped up and down because the PS3 he ordered had been held up by the snow. (It was bought for the kids - allegedly.)  That, coupled with eleven for dinner, manufacturing two Harry Potter cloaks, wrapping hampers and presents, helping in school and everything grinding to a halt because of too much snow,  it's a wonder Christmas happened at all......

L's passport arrived back this morning. Not bad - less than two weeks. However it has now sent me into a frenzy of anxiety wondering where the heck H and mines are. H's is probably fine, while mine is probably pinned to a wall in the passport office while folk laugh and throw darts at it.

Went to Glasgow yesterday for some shopping I couldn't get off Amazon. It was quite a nice day. Shopped in the 'Build a Bear Workshop' for my nieces. L had a whale of a time picking things for them,  while S and H hung about outside looking like they were going to expire from boredom. Then we went to Primark for some stuff. As usual it was the kids department where she picked up clothes which were thoroughly inappropriate. I wanted to laugh as we finally settled on a top for her birthday party. A pink sparkly affair with ruffles, a flower and clip on necklace. Nothing like overkill.  It might just get lost in the washing basket, an easy feat at the best of times......


Just waiting to see who our first village eejit is.   In other words the first loony to stick up their Christmas tree. Last year I spotted one on November the 27th. Why would you do that? I like Christmas but that drives me nuts!  All it does is start the kids on a frenzy of asking when ours is getting put up. My head gets nipped until I finally give in and nearly kill myself hauling it out of the loft.

Note to self : try to find Advent Calenders in loft. Will not get away this year with pretending that Advent starts two days late because I have forgotten about them....

Sunday, 20 November 2011

Passports!

Finally after months of procrastinating, I have managed to get the passports applied for. A mammoth task. S has his own, mine needed renewing, having expired two years ago and the kids both need their first. First stop, photos. It does not matter how much effort I make with passport photos, I always end up looking like Jabba the Hutt with a hangover. They will never let me into the United States with the scary looking effort I provided. Specs removed, hair slicked back unnaturally (I have a fringe) and a face so sour it would frighten children, I sent it off secretly wishing it would be rejected and I would get another go. And have you ever tried to get a six year old to not smile?  L and I had to turn our backs on H. I knew he would automatically laugh when the camera hit him. I was right. The man in Timpsons was patience personified. Just as well. Eighteen quid down the lavvy - at that price they should have been able to make me look like a ruddy supermodel.

Not content with having to pay for photos, I also had to provide a full copy of H's birth certificate. I only had the extract. S and I had a humungous row the day his birth had been registered and I think I floated into the registrars on a post natally psychotic cloud and floated out again not giving a s**t about whether we had it or not. Another ten quid!

Finally forced myself to go and get poor J to sign them as she stuffed her dinner back one Monday night. I looked so different that she had to countersign mine again.  We debated about how long we had known each other and I could have wept as she wrote 'I consider this to be a true likeness of...' on the back of my photo.

After parting with seventy seven quid for my passport and forty nine pounds each for the kids I sent them off. No check and send, I have a feeling that going abroad after twelve years is going to be a major eye opener. Everything seems to have changed and I have not even got to the ESTA's yet......

Wednesday, 16 November 2011

It's a Hard Knock Life for Mum.......

L has been accepted for the school choir. A lovely thing you may think - but no. Not when your ears are being assaulted with various songs over and over and over. Last week it was one about pain and sorrow and miserable stuff that would have made you want to slit your wrists. This week it's 'It's a hard knock life' being played over and over on You Tube and a warbling wee voice singing along. I am thinking of turning into Miss Hannigan and just lounging on the sofa with a bottle of gin to block out the noise....

She got up this morning and decided that she would sing everything she said. Not great for the nerves at 7 am.

S has went down South this morning until Friday. The bloody cheek of him! Darned inconvenient considering L is doing a talk for school homework (with PowerPoint no less) and I am c**p with computers. I can only buy things, send emails, and look at Face book.  I had to get a crash course on how to convert photos and make a presentation last night. The s**t is going to hit the fan big time.  Our council has this wonderful online system called 'Glow' which means the kids can do homework in the bad weather and get in touch with their teachers via email if necessary. Fine if the ruddy password to get on works. The talk is due to be emailed in by tomorrow and L's password is still not working. I said we would send it on a memory stick if the email didn't work,  to which I was told 'no Mum, Mrs P says we could give the school computer a virus'. No such bloody luck. 

The only thing 'Glowing' is my face, with pent up sodding frustration.....

And if that's not bad enough I have said she can have a sleepover for her birthday next week.  Must be off my bleeding head.....

All together now, 'It's a hard knock liiiife for Muuum.....'

Sunday, 6 November 2011

Party Time.....

Wednesday is H's birthday . Seven already and I have finally had to give in to having a party. L has had two so it seemed only fair. As a result yesterday I had to negotiate Asda for the usual party fare and a barrow load of sweets etc.  I decided to get a giant pizza from the counter, an ordeal that I often subject myself to and then wonder why. It always gets my blood pressure rocketing. After standing so long that my feet were taking root,  the person on the counter finally decided to serve me.  Honestly, if ever there was a candidate for a rocket enema she was it. Wandering about 'as if the dead lice were dropping off her'  (my Grannie's saying for those diddling about in a trance like state), she served me with a vacant expression.  All the lights were on but there was definitely no one at home. I swear to goodness, when I die and reach the pearly gates and if I have been bad, the Boss is going to make me spend   purgatory in the queue at the Adsa pizza counter, always waiting and never getting served......

Up this morning bright and early to cook pizza and make rolls for the party. H had picked the local pottery studio for the venue. Staffed by two lovely ladies who have the patience of saints,  it's just the place to take eleven rowdy four to nine year olds.  We had the place to ourselves as they very kindly opened early for us. After choosing a piece of pottery to paint with more shades of glaze than you can imagine, the kids settled down to create their own little masterpieces. We had multicoloured cats, cupcakes, technicolour dinosaurs and pretty fairies all ready for the kiln. After decorating bags for them to go in, the food was served, a couple of games of pass the parcel were played and two hours were gone. Fantastic!  Everyone had a great time or so it seemed. Headed off home to sort the devastation we had left that morning.

Here's a link for our great wee pottery place :

http://www.potteraround.co.uk/

Thursday, 3 November 2011

Why you have to do PE....(and it's not the reason you think!)

Today's 'Eejit Parent of the Week Award' has to go to the dad I heard on the road home from school today.   Walking home with his chubby son in tow,  I overheard their conversation which went as follows : 'Daaad, why do I have to do PE?'  'Because you do son', 'But why? (whining voice) , 'Because' (wait for it) 'your fingernails will fall out if you don't.'  WHAT!  If I had had the opportunity to rewind that conversation and hear it again it would have been worthwhile. I could hardly believe it. How on earth did he dream that one up? How about saying, ' because if you don't move that chubby ass of yours and stay off the Wham bars you're going to end up a bloater!'  Now I have heard it all........

The Christmas telly adverts have started with a vengeance. Usually I don't see many as L and H tend to watch CBBC however they seem to have defected lately to CITV which is filled with them.  As a kid I used to watch them enthralled. Now I watch them and think, 'How much is that c**p going to cost'. I particularly hate the Barbie adverts and anything aimed at girls. Why do they think we need to hear everything in revolting sugary accents.  They should keep it real, something along the lines of 'Kid's you must buy this new piece of plastic cack because when it falls to bits it's great for clogging mummy's hoover'. Or  'Buy Mr Frosty because it will make a great mess of your mum's carpets'.  I remember the year L got 'Moon Sand'. Probably the shortest surviving Christmas present ever. By 6pm on Christmas day it had made it's way into the hoover bag never to be seen again....

This year I am not buying anything breakable, spillable, sticky or messy. Which rules out 99% of the stuff on the telly.....

Homework woes.........

Why are men such forgetful dipsticks? It seems to be an affliction shared by all ages of the male species.  On the way back from swimming yesterday H managed to let it slip that he had 'forgotten' his homework for the past two days. Cue a major rant as L and her pal tittered in the back of the car and 'I's wee boy gave me a row for not being kind.  This was due to the fact that I was threatening cancellation of his birthday party. Now this is Wednesday and reading is due to today so no reading done. Spelling due tomorrow so to avert panic I dropped a line to the teacher, apologising and explaining he had the memory span of a goldfish and could she remind him to bring his spelling home.  I suppose there is an excuse for him as he is only six however his father is another matter.  A man who is good at his job and it is a miracle.  The last business trip away saw him having to drive another sixty miles as he got thirty miles from the house and realised he had forgotten his notes. This morning he realised (thankfully) that he had forgotten his wallet a mile from the house. Too much, too early, he escaped out the door as I launched into an morning rant about the forgetfulness of the male species....

It is reported today that  Justin Bieber (that chipmunk faced singing squirt) has allegedly fathered a child after a fumble in a toilet with a groupie. Heaven forbid. Really the mind boggles.....
 
Happy birthday to me. Slummy Mummy Blog was one year old yesterday.....

Tuesday, 1 November 2011

This used to be a Funhouse........GET IT OFFFFFFF!!!!!!

Yes I know I have disappeared off the face off the planet for a few weeks, but at the request of my fabulous baking friend N, I am back again waffling....

Thursday night was the annual school Halloween party and as usual I was roped in.  H gave it a miss as he is of a nervous disposition and wouldn't have slept for a week if he had witnessed some of the costumes. Especially at the second disco for the older kids. I wasn't too enamoured myself.  A kid dressed a Jason from the horror film Friday the 13th, and one running about with a fake cleaver which was eventually confiscated. Why would you let your kid loose, dressed as a character from an Over 18's film? One particular participant lurked in the darkness dressed as a freaky clown. H is terrified of clowns and I didn't even mention it, as he has a fit if you so much as play Pink's Funhouse tune with the line, 'This used to be a Funhouse and now it's full of Evil Clowns..', cue hysterics and screams of 'get it off!...'  L however was far more enthusiastic and took off with her pal to the disco dressed as Goths complete with white faces and lace gloves. They looked like a pair of anaemic trannies....

The kids started their new swimming lessons tonight. We have moved as L had reached the maximum grade and now just needs to build her stamina. It was a mum's night out with myself, I, A and J all trailing our respective offspring for a dip. They had recommended the venue, so I hitched a lift and after getting them sorted,  left the pool to observe at a safe distance.  I am glad I couldn't see too much. The last pool they were learning in was reasonably shallow, this one was not. L got the fright of her life when she jumped in to what she didn't realise was six and a half foot of water. I wasn't particularly worried about her as she is a competent swimmer and once she got used to the depth was fine.  I nearly had heart failure when I spotted H though. A non swimmer, he was valiantly struggling along in the deep end with a float the size of a postcard. I couldn't bear to watch and yet couldn't drag my eyes away.  'I' was her usual reassuring self. 'Don't worry if he gets in trouble, the teacher's got a big pole'.  There really was no answer to that.   I stared in horror through the glass at my wee boy who might as well have been floating in the English Channel......