colour me orange…

this week I lost my spray tan virginity. I now have orange feet, thankfully the weather in perth is shite so my newly sprayed feet will stay covered by shoes…what made me call the beautician and say “do you do spray tans”??? well it was my husband. see I don’t particularly like my legs and prefer to cover them up, usually with jeans – yes even if it is 42 degrees, they are that bad. Anyhoo Mr B Badger.com has been urging me to wear shorts and suggested that I get a spray tan to make my very white legs look like they belong in shorts…so I stalled. we can’t afford it, what if it’s too dark, what if I go orange, it doesn’t last long, you have to keep getting it done were all tactics and excuses that I tried in order for him to agree that jeans were going to be okay for me. in the end he just said ring and book. so I did. and now I have orange feet. I look like a henna tattooist just coloured me in from the ankle down. even my toenails are orange. this was my fear. I will now be that woman who other women look at and say “ooooo bad spray tan sista”. I know this because I do this. I am usually the person watching people’s feet as they walk in front of me and seeing their orange feet wondering what would possess them to get a spray tan…well now I know. now for a lot of people if it’s behind them they don’t really get bothered by it like if the back of their hair didn’t get attention from the straightener, no worries. or if their new hipster jeans let loose a crack a plumber would be proud of when they sit down, who cares? well peeps I do. I care. I went to an RPM class once and would usually be early so I can get the bike at the back of the room. on this occasion I had to sit at the front so apologised to the people behind me for what they were about to see, I guarantee it wasn’t pretty. so now that I am sporting heels to make the oompa loompas want to give me a low five I definitely wont be wearing shorts. if only I had skin like Mr B Badger.com or little boss…neither of them really need to be in the sun, in the shade while the sun is shining is enough for them to tan a lovely golden brown with no freckles in sight. if I joined all my freckles together I would probably have a nice tan…oh well at least its only my feet that are orange. the rest of me is a tan colour and the day after I felt as though I had lost 5kg…I hadn’t but looking in the mirror I remembered what an old friend once said….”tanned fat looks better than white fat” and right now I would have to agree. here’s hoping that in six months time there wont be much fat left so tanned, white or orange it wont matter. …

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the squeaky door gets the oil…

normally I would be using this as a saying meaning those that continue to make the most noise tend to get the most attention – which is so very true now that we have little boss – but I am saying it today in the literal sense. all, and I mean all, of the doors in our house squeak of creak on closing and opening and to be perfectly honest up until recently it hasn’t bothered us at all. whats changed??? well we now have a five month old little boss who wakes at the slightest noise so the very loud squeaky bedroom door just doesn’t cut it, especially when I have managed to finally get her to sleep and I have all my clothes ready for my much awaited shower only to find that my panties are trapped behind the now closed bedroom door. and knowing that opening the door will let out a long and loud creak worthy of an Addams Family sound effect I chose to go commando. little boss will wake at the most random sounds and given that MrRooben has to violently shake himself every time he stands up he no longer wears a collar while we are at home as the noise from his collar shaking would wake her….now just the sound of his ears flapping against his head and his tail against his bum is enough to bring her out of what seemed like a deep sleep. so we have purchased the biggest can of WD-40 on the market and have it poised for action for this to become a quiet, squeak free environment. The WD-40 will always come in handy as it can clean crayon off most surfaces so fingers crossed our wall colour will remain throughout the “artistic” phase most kids go through.

so many new reasons for little boss to wake from her seemingly solid slumber at the moment…until very recently she could only roll from front to back and even then wasn’t really that keen, preferring instead to lay superman style until someone responded to her banshee like wailing and flipped her over. now she is quite content laying on her side and in some cases face planted into the mattress. the unfortunate condition this creates usually involves one leg getting stuck in between the rungs of the cot, then we all wake up to screams which would normally indicate complete removal of the leg only to find it is just hanging out. at least it seems the whole mattress is getting a work out now. two weeks ago she would just lay on her back in the same place all nioght….now she covers every square inch of the cot several times over before finally coming to rest. hunger has started to wake her up and this only started when we introduced solids…that was meant to make her sleep longer but ahhh not so much here so I am back to the middle of the night feeds which is making me look every single one of my 41 years. other reasons for her to wake are the new neighbor who drives a WRX with a thumping exhaust and stereo to match, I see your WRX and I raise you one screaming, over tired baby while you are trying to study…. then there’s MrRooben who contributes to the sleeplessness by barking or howling at completely the wrong time, every time. Ahhhh the joys. If only WD-40 worked as an all-purpose silencer life would be grand….for now we will have to be content with the soundless closing of doors and hope that little boss gets tuckered out enough to withstand all the other noise we can’t control…

remember the days of the old schoolyard…

going to high school for me was very similar to the high school life portrayed in Puberty Blues – not the new series on the telly – the movie and book from 1981 and 1979 respectively. I have to say that, unfortunately, Kathy Lette and Gabrielle Carey nailed it. from the popular girl with the awesome hair to the girl that nobody likes, just because the popular girl said not to, and everyone in between they got it right. unfortunately I don’t remember any good times from the three and a half years I spent at high school and I wouldn’t know any of the people I went to school with now so no point in heading off to a school reunion. would probably be difficult for them to find me anyway considering I have changed my name twice since leaving and will do again for my 50th birthday – which is only a very short 9 years away, bloody hell. anyhoo the entrance high school was a complete hole. if you wanted drugs, a fight, to get your head punched in or flushed in the toilet this was the place to be – quality. now other people in my family went to the same school and their accounts may be different as we would have definitely hung out with very different crowds, but my experience was absolute quality. having friends one day and being on the most hated list the next, having my name and phone number – pre mobile phones peeps so it was my home number – written on the boys toilet wall with the tag line…she’s a slut so for a good time call…ah heads up lads I was a virgin til 17 and had well and truly left school by then, then there were the head in the toilet moments, the getting pelted with fruit moments and the push and shove in the canteen for no good reason hard to believe that I played truant most days and went to the beach…usually on my own or with one of the boys who seemed happy to continue a friendship day after day and knew the toilet graffiti was complete crap. back in the day bullying was still very much part of the rite of passage in school but computers only existed in massive corporations back then and if you wanted to call someone you had to pick up the phone at home or put some coins in the payphone. no such thing as cyber bullying which I hope little boss never has to deal with. the reason for this post today is that those schoolyard moments continue to come back to haunt me in the most unlikely places. today I took little boss to our weekly gym and swim session where half of the ladies are all from one mothers group so they all know each other and meet up regularly. the rest of us are just blow ins from the local area. so today I was early and there were only three of the mothers group ladies there so when I walked in I said good morning to them and not one of them acknowledged me…not even with a look or a nod of the head…so I sat in the usual place I have sat for a couple of weeks because this seems to be the norm and nobody sat near me. now I could care less whether these women like me but it would have been nice for someone to occupy their “normal” position so that little boss had someone to smile at and watch. this wasn’t what bought the memories of high school flooding back though…what did it was that one of the girls that was absent today ended up being the topic of conversation and it was well bitchy and a little bit nasty really. so it turns out those schoolyard behaviours are alive and well right into adulthood…yippee. my father says if you can count your friends on one hand you’re doing really well and I tend to agree, I have a few very close friends that have seen me through some very low times and some very high times – not in a “let’s smoke some weed and get high” kind of way – and I hope I have done the same for them. so I am comfortable taking little boss to this class so she can check out the other babies and see that there are other people out there in her size and the mum’s can bitch about me all they want…cause lets face it, while they’re talking about me they’re giving that other poor girl a rest.

oh and for the record it wasn’t all bullying by the students at the illustrious entrance high school…my science teacher told me in front of the entire class that I would amount to nothing – cheers for that inspirational guidance – and the school principle threatened to remove my name off the department of educations role if I did not remain in school until the end of the term – I finished school to work full time. I didn’t think anything of his threat until, at the age of 20 I wanted to return to school and do my TEE (final year of high school exam) so I tried to get my year 10 certificate and in the words of the department of education representative…”sorry miss, we dont have anyone with that name listed as ever attending any school in NSW during that time frame”…well cheers for that.

halfway there…

so six months ago I started this blog asking myself the question – how hard can it be? – of course I was referring to taking 12 months out of the workforce to be a fulltime mum. I can’t believe it’s been six months…which means I only have six months to go. time has just flown by and little boss is learning new mad skills everyday now. she was playing peek a boo with Mr B Badger.com the other night and it took him a couple of times to figure out what she was doing. she is laughing and rolling and getting enjoyment from sucking her toes that sarah ferguson would be proud of. as for me I can’t believe it has taken me almost all of the past six months to just aim to go with the flow. I can always find something to stress out about and relaxing has never been a strong point for me but I am really looking forward to the next six months…we will have less money than ever due to my parental leave payments finishing in January and Mr B Badger.com working for a company that will probably end up doing its business in china someday soon but we have everything we need for a pretty cruisy summer so lets hope western australia puts on a great weather show for us over the next six months and I can return to work energised and ready to start the next chapter of barrybadger.com…as for this time in my life I asked the question how hard can it be and so far my answer is as hard as you make it. of course I have a very happy and healthy baby in little boss who only really gives me a hard time when she is going through her wonder weeks so for the most part I need to be more laid back in myself and just go with the flow. yesterday we went to the foreshore and I laid little boss on a blanket under a tree which amused her until she fell asleep…that is what I need to be doing more of, the tumbleweeds of MrRoobens hair will still be there when I get home so my aim is going to be to take us off to the foreshore for a healthy dose of negative ions once a week…

tis the season…

on the telly last week they reported that west australians will spend the most on christmas this year with the average spend per person at $1600…considering the amount that Mr B Badger.com and I plan on spending is significantly less than the average, and I feel we may not be alone, there must be some massive cash getting floated on the silly season in this great state of ours to bring that average up to such a ridiculous amount. mind you in years previous we may have come close but this year we have no visitors and it will be a very small affair around our massive tree which doesn’t have a star or an angel because it is too tall and the tree topper would have to be on a 90 degree angle for success. I was wondering if that financial stat on christmas expenditure included corporate spend…we were discussing this on the weekend and out of the four people in the discussion the results by employer were quite varied…a member of the police force gets nothing – not even a bunnings style sausage sizzle and a handshake, an employee of a minerals company will go out for lunch with the boss and a christmas do with the company, an employee of a steel company has the option of going to the zoo on a sunday, but it will probably get cancelled due to lack of interest, and hopefully a christmas hamper but given the way manufacturing is going in australia possibly not and lastly me who used last year as an example because this year I doubt I will be included in the festivities – not because they don’t like me, more likely as I am not there as a contributing member of the team I am not eligible – I work for a global mining giant, talk it up eh?, and last year we had a secret santa amongst the team, a christmas river cruise and they gave everyone a christmas hamper that was chock full of west australian and australian products. I was beside myself. I had only been there about six weeks by the time christmas rolled round so I would have been pretty chuffed with a pat on the back and an early finish on the last day. In my previous job I persuaded the boss to chuck on a barby on the last day and to let the guys off a couple of hours early one year. everyone bitched and moaned that they never got anything for christmas but to be honest everywhere else in the country they were laying off staff every other day from the GFC so I reckon a barby and an early mark followed by a return to work in the new year should have been gift enough. the following year we had some great results despite the hard conditions so I arranged to have some quotes from different staff members printed onto coffee mugs and filled them with lollies and on the last day of work my boss threw on a barby and gave everyone their mug and said thanks. we thought it had gone pretty well until the results from the employee survey came back and several people had complained that they thought receiving nothing would be better than just a coffee mug filled with sweets…so be it. as they say ask and ye shall receive. given that little boss will only be six months old this christmas I cant see us buying anything much for her so we will probably just wrap up what we might have needed to get her during the month and pretend it is for christmas…..ohhhh looooook little boss santa got you some nappies…

still waiting for it to kick in….

no not the acid I dropped back in ’87, the maternal in me. see growing up I always said I didn’t want children, wouldn’t have any, wasn’t interested. and I remember having a conversation, somewhere in my thirties, with my mother about my “clock” that didn’t seem to be wound correctly as there was no tick toc on my radar. mum assured me that when I met the right fella and was in a relationship things would change…it really didn’t. I never had that urge to have a baby, that crazy desire that absolutely drives women insane every month as they will their period not to come…don’t get me wrong I have ALWAYS willed my period not to come but for an entirely different reason than the baby mad girls out there. anyhoo you may be reading this the wrong way – as in I didn’t want to have children – and this is not true. I just didn’t have the whatever it is that makes women want it to happen so bad they go spare. I was more an if it happens, it happens kind of person….it’s probably easier to deal with the disappointment of failure that way. anyway along the way I did manage a few pregnancies and lo and behold now we have K Dogg who from now on will be referred to as Little Boss cause at only 19 weeks old she rules the roost. so the one thing I have noticed about myself that makes me feel a bit like a freak is the female traits I distinctly lack. at my baby shower there were ooohhhhs and ahhhhhs and awwwww soooooo cuuuutes flying around all over the place and I was in a very uncomfortable space. I even felt awkward opening the gifts in front of everyone. turns out I am a bit of a weirdo…yesterday Little Boss and I went to our weekly active parenting class and since we were experiencing the joys of a wonder week for last weeks session this week was our first time. so of course everyone else in the class already know each other and as I wheeled Little Boss into the room I realised that none of the other babies were in their swim gear, just regular clothes rolling around on play mats on the floor…so all the ladies are looking at me and I say “hi everyone, I’m Mika and this is Kenzi” and I get back one random and not enthusiastic “hi”…this is gonna be a tough seven weeks. so I park myself next to a lady and her little girl and I fish out something that looks kind of play mat like, but not really, out of the bag and I lay Little Boss on it to check out all the other babies – she was probably thinking “thanks for putting me in my bathers mum, everyone else is just dressed normally” I really hope the need to conform doesn’t start this early though. so I try to strike up a conversation with the bird next door and she is very quiet but I know her name and her baby’s name and age – the end. I am listening to the other women and they are all talking about foods they have tried and how apples don’t go far and how much pureed fruit does one of those frozen cube thingys hold…Little Boss is still a formula only baby and will probably stay that wy until she gets closer to six months so I was just doing the nod and smile but it was a bit like an out-of-body experience. I just can’t see myself having those conversations cause what they eat is just that, if apples don’t go far – dont do apples and the cube thingy hold what it holds – measure it before you put it in the freezer. anyways so the class fills up and we have to go round the room and introduce ourselves, our baby, say how old our baby is and say what the best thing about having a baby is….so if you have ever seen sandra bullock play the undercover pageant queen and when asked what she would like to see changed says “harsher penalties for parole violators Stan” and then when she see’s the reaction follows up with “and world peace” that’s how I felt but I didn’t get to do the follow-up bit, mine went like this….”hi everyone, I am Mika and this is Kenzi and she is four months old and for me there are so many great things about having a baby but I guess the best is learning to be truly selfless” now I wish I could have added “and her cute little giggles” onto the end cause that would have made it less awkward but there was no time. the other responses were giggles, smiles, when she learns something new, her cute little toes, when he got his first tooth etc etc you get the picture. I was waaaaayyyyyyy off with my comment. see there is something just not there with me. oh well, fake it til you make it I say. and in all honesty if the conversation calls for pondering the stewing resilience of fruit, I can do that. it’s a little out of my normal comfort zone for topics but if I want Little Boss to socialize with other babies I can certainly mix it with the other mum’s. Little Boss had a great time. we got home and at 3.30pm she went to sleep and at 8pm I had to wake her for a feed – this hasn’t happened for about two months – then she went straight back to sleep and woke up at 3.30am for another feed then back to sleep til 7.30am. then after some more food I put her on her stomach for some exercise and she may have learned something from her observations the previous day because she pushed herself up and then rolled over for the first time – if I had a camera for her face it would have been priceless. she was stunned and looked at me with a bewildered “what the hell just happened” look on her face. so next week if we have to answer a question about being a mum or having a baby my answer will be a whole lot simpler than this weeks effort…