the perks of parents…

I recently discovered parents with prams parking and I now spend the first five minutes of a journey into a car park checking to see if they provide spaces for the wide load that is little boss’ pram. this has been an interesting discovery and an insight into human behaviour that  I would never had been privy to if little boss had not come along. so far parents with prams is a loose term that includes parents who left their kids at home, people who don’t have any evidence of having children and elderly drivers who don’t really care whether its parents with prams or disabled parking – they’re old so the rules no longer apply. on my most recent visit to the local market place – their name for it not mine – Mr B and I parked the car and while he was getting little boss out of the car we noticed that their was a security guard on the phone in front of the car next to ours…on closer inspection there were three kids in the back seat, the engine was running and all the windows were up…nice one.

they say that parents with prams parking is situated close to the entrance so that the people who use it don’t have far to walk to get to the shops but for me it’s more about walking through the car park with distracted drivers desperately trying to find a car park that can potentially run me down that makes me keep an eye out for parents with prams spots. not everyone likes it – obviously or those that abuse the system would think twice – but it works for me and next time I see some old dude pulling his 4X4 into these spots I wont stay silent like I did last time I will challenge him. the irony is that if shopping centres put in seniors parking bays they probably wouldn’t use them because that would mean admitting that they are seniors. anyhoo for now I will continue to take full advantage of these perks of parenting because in the blink of an eye my six month old will be sixteen and wont want to be seen with me.


the christmas spirit…

so it’s that time of the year again and let’s just say it brings a sense of unease….it’s 2.06am and I have ordered groceries online, comforted and fed an upset little boss, checked facebook, email and the closing price of bluescope steel shares and here I am at barry….with an uncomfortable feeling in the pit of my stomach that I can’t explain. it’s a combination of worry that I may have forgotten something important and stress over the things I need to do. ridiculous really…if I have forgotten something important, well, I can’t change that and the things I have yet to do revolve around having a presentable environment for our christmas guests. the way I stress about this sort of thing you would think it is important when really it’s not. would I like to have the guest room all decked out with matching pillows and fancy linen – sure why not – do I hope that my guests are happy to have a clean and comfortable bed to sleep in – definitely…will there be clean towels in the bath room – yes – will they be fluffy and matching – probably not….will the floors be clean before the guests arrive – yes – will it still be clean when they get here – this depends on MrRooben and his desire to dig a hole in the garden and then run sand through the house at warp speed using the walls to stop himself as he slides on the floorboards. the amusing part about all my worry is that this year I have less guests at christmas than I have ever had and yet I still feel as though I have so much to do. my besty is going to thailand. smart move sister. in all honesty I enjoy having people over and cooking, drinking and eating and I look forward to christmas morning with a childlike enthusiasm that makes Mr B shake his head. this year I will miss my father dragging out the present opening for as long as possible allowing only one person to open a present at a time and ordering breaks so that the presents last longer. we will probably do the same thing here and to ensure that our present opening goes for as long as possible I re-wrapped the gift my brother and sister-in-law sent for little boss into individual presents. australia post didn’t leave me much choice actually, by the time it had arrived it looked like it was wrapped by wolverine. I just can’t shake the feeling that I should be cleaning the blinds and washing the windows….like my guests are not stopping for lunch unless I pass the white glove test. maybe it’s that unspoken belief that as a stay at home mum I have all this time on my hands…tell that to the endless cups of cold yorkshire tea I have not had the time to drink in the past six months – and at the price we pay for yorkshire blend I have considered heating it up in the microwave. in all honesty even if I did have a spare couple of hours in the day I would much rather spend them making funny faces at little boss than washing walls. I don’t want to look back on my parental leave and think how great it was that I cleaned the house every day or explain to little boss that I missed her first word because she couldn’t shout it above the noise of the hoover. this year christmas day will hopefully be the most chilled out of all time. it is going to be forty degrees in the shade so we will be having a barby and salad and then spend the rest of the day floating around the pool – bliss. by then I will have forgotten all my worries about whether the shower glass is stain free and will just enjoy my time spent with friends and family having a laugh – mostly at ourselves….

this lifes lessons…

if we are sent back to learn lessons time after time until they are all learnt and we reach nirvana then this time round for me it must be patience and tolerance…these seem to be most lacking in my life. and given that I am married to a man who suffers from dyslexia it is safe to say that my passion for the written word tests my patience daily. no I am not perfect although I did get a gold star for spelling and grammar in year 1 from the entrance primary school and have probably been believing the hype since then. my current irritation is seeing ect instead of etc…so lets get it straight peeps ect is the abbreviation for electroconvulsive therapy not etcetera fairly sizable difference in meaning I would say. some would argue “well you know what I mean” yes clearly I do know what you mean but that’s not the point. those closest to me would also argue that I need to learn to put a lid on my aggression at times…see in australia, or down under – thanks men at work, you must have a permit for a firearm. it’s not in our constitution that we have the right to bear arms…we are so laid back it would be written as the right to bare arms so everyone could wear singlets to work. anyway not having a gun is probably a good thing for me cause sometimes stuff irritates me that much I feel like firing off a few rounds just to make my point. before I go on let’s get one thing straight – I am all talk – I have never been in a fight, never hit another person and the one time I caught a cab in Dallas and he had a gun strapped to the dash I was bricking it. so realistically I would never own a gun and would never want to intentionally hurt another person. I just like to say “lucky I don’t have a gun” in response to seeing stuff that insenses me. like graffiti…and I don’t mean the artsy stuff that town councils commission to make an area look “urban” I mean total dickheads that spray paint their “tag” all over the place. what’s the point kids, really…I hope karma does a number on them and when they have just forked out for a home some idiot swings by and sprays KSD all over their brand new colorbond fence so they know how irritating it is.

anyhoo I am going to have to bottle it all now that we have little boss cause I don’t want her to learn my bad behaviours…this should be fun and definitely a good way for me to get busy learning more about patience and tolerance….

only in the movies….

so I recently watched what to expect when you’re expecting which is based on the book by Heidi Murkoff…this is one of those films that Mr B would suffer through and then declare it as “a load of twaddle” afterwards, so I watched it on my own. and essentially I would have to agree with him. now it may just be that I am married to a man who hails from the north of england and romance doesn’t feature highly but do people actually say stuff to each other like they do on the movies?? please, if you or your significant other speak to each other in such a way let me know…and also please advise me if you do this because it comes naturally or because you think everyone does it cause that’s what they do on the movies – so it must be the norm. yes the whole conception to birth journey is amazing when you think about it but it’s also stressful, terrifying, emotional and the list goes on. they show some of this in the movie which was moderately amusing but they also show husbands and partners that look lovingly into the eyes of their woman and declare their undying love, admiration and respect. this is the bit I am wondering about. maybe I was too high on pain killers or a little confronted by the TEDS stockings and machine attached to my legs to keep the blood flowing but I don’t recall Mr B looking anything but stunned and shattered in a “what the hell just happened” kind of way…and honestly if he had cracked out any of the common hollywood style phrases I would have assumed that he had also been drugged to his eyeballs. I know if a movie were based on my relationship it certainly wouldn’t leave people with the tear in the eye kind of warm and fuzzy feeling you get from watching movie relationships because it’s essentially hard to capture on camera the subtlety behind many of our moments. we don’t hold hands, hug or do any public displays of affection – we don’t really do private displays of affection either when I think about it, it’s just not our thing. it is, however, the reason that people flock to the cinema to watch “chick flicks”. you don’t see hollywood writing wedding night scenes where you share an adjoining room with your newly acquired mother and sister-in-law or on your honeymoon on the island of mykonos you are booked into a room that has two single beds…unless its going to be a comedy as it’s not really passion inducing. now that I have been up since 1.30am and it’s now almost 3am I am beginning to think that we are the exception to all this loving behaviour that is perpetuated by film producers…while they were prepping me for my spinal block, the overly talkative nurse – obviously a technique to distract you from the environment and what it about to happen – said to Mr B “you can sit over here and hold her hand”, which on the silver screen would have been portrayed by him looking at me with reassurance in his eyes and a “you’re doing great honey” out of his mouth. how it actually played out was more like this…

nurse: “you can sit over here and hold her hand”

husband: wheels stool to sit next to wife and awkwardly takes her hand in his while looking like a stunned mullet

wife: sitting on bed, breathing deeply to keep a panic attack at bay, stares straight ahead and says “don’t touch me”

now I know what it was like to go through it and I have to say it was probably more confronting for Mr B than for myself, but now that I remember that little exchange I do think our relationship is more on the side of a comedy – sometimes even dark comedy – than romance or even rom com and I prefer it that way as it’s far more fun for us to laugh about our antics….okay little boss has finally gone back to sleep so im off to catch another hour or so of shut-eye. I welcome your thoughts on the fantasy versus reality of the movie world especially if that movie myth is your real life day to day…ni ni neville.

first ever memories…

I have been watching little boss very closely as she looks at the world around her and tries to figure stuff out and it got me thinking how cool it would be if you could remember this time in your life…when you had no idea what a tree was you just loved to watch it as the branches and leaves swayed in the wind or when you had no idea how to use your face so you concentrated really hard on what other people did with theirs and then practised until you got it right but still really having no idea what the hell you were doing. after all this learning you get to have a big sleep and when you wake up do it all over again. this is the life of little boss. and we get to live vicariously through her. when we go for our early morning walk she stares with such fierce concentration at the big gum tree branches that are moving around high above her…actually the look on her face could be one of concern given the size of those branches and the high wind we get here. but whatever she is looking at she makes me want to look at because the look on her face means it must be worth looking at. I didn’t know that there was some beautiful jasmine growing over our fence from next door until little boss was looking up at it and laughing as it bobbed back and forth and I also wasnt aware of how fascinating the sunlight reflecting off the pool onto the ceiling in her bedroom could be until I lay down next to her to watch it. I wonder what her first memories will be…I think the older we get the more our memories tend to be determined by what we saw in photographs rather than our actual memories. I can remember the gas water heater in my grandparents house and the shower rose that was the size of a dinner plate, the feeling of being hugged by my grandmother when she was quite chubby and wearing a coat that made my face feel itchy, I can clearly remember trying to mimic my cousins smile in a school photo from year 2 and lets just say I failed. I have some really great memories of the stuff my brother and I used to do – or more accurately, stuff I used to make him do…I remember our houses that we lived in and in my mind they are all enormous – they weren’t but that’s just how I remember it. I remember when aunty fran dared me to up-end the salad bowl on uncle johns head and my mum telling me not to do it – even though I really wanted to! – so aunty fran did it, and as we all sat around their dining table uncle john continued his conversation with bits of lettuce, cucumber and tomato mixed with dressing rolling down his sizable belly…he only stopped talking to stuff some salad in his mouth ohhh good times people, good times. wouldn’t it be great if you could remember the first time you used your senses. not like in the womb senses,  out in the big bad world what the hell are you feeding me now mum, memories. that would be a riot. my mother in law says Mr B’s first word was more…he liked his food that much. and they were veges…not sure what happened because I can’t even disguise veges by chopping them into miniscule pieces without him finding them. little boss certainly lets us know when she likes something by hanging out her tongue far enough to rival MrRooben and kicking her legs and slamming her palms on the high chair okay okay we get it you love pumpkin…and carrot and sweet potato. turns out that the only DNA transfer from me so far is a love of the colour orange. if I want her to experience something other than these three foods I have to blend it in with one of them and I have to say apple and pumpkin is a nice blend, here’s hoping that as she grows up she will still have a love of veges and the outdoors….