Wednesday, 24 February 2010

Why is it so hard to say no?

That's not to say I didn't spoil them - I gave them loads of treats and took them places and looked after them - but I was always able to say no if I thought something wasn't good for them.

I was particularly strict about food. My youngest stepson is really fussy - always has been. He hates fruit and veg - loves biscuits, sweets and crisps. Getting him to eat a balanced diet was an enormous challenge - and we battled it out between us over the years bargaining the healthy stuff with the treats.

I can remember being appalled by the ingredients in some snacks and absolutely forbidding them.

Now I don't know whether it's just because I've got softer as I've got older or whether it's a maternal thing - but I find it virtually impossible to say no to my own kids if they really love a certain type of junk food.

I'm still quite strict about the balance of healthy stuff vs junk - and they do eat fruit and veg - but if they plead for something which I know I would have refused my stepkids - I cave in pretty easily. (Which makes me feel like such a hypocrite!)

In short - I guess I'm not the sort of parent I thought I would be. Are you as strict as you thought you'd be - or do you find it impossible to say no to your kids too?

Tuesday, 23 February 2010

Birthday party

My youngest son was four on Sunday.

We had a party for him and all his friends and family were there. He beamed his way through the whole day - proudly wearing his new Ben 10 T-shirt and clutching his new Ben 10 wallet.

All day I watched him running around excitedly and wondered where those last four years had gone and tried to remember what he looked like when I first set eyes on him exactly four years ago to the day.

Isn't it wierd how the memories of our children become foggy. We watch them growing every day and yet it's almost impossible to picture them clearly at the various stages they go through.

I felt so nostalgic all day... and I wondered whether I'll feel like this on every birthday. So pleased to see him growing up healthy and happy... so sad to see the time passing so quickly. Although I really don't want to return to the days of nappies and changing bags and pushchairs and bottles... part of me mourns its passing too.

What a contradiction it is to be a mother. We want them to grow, we want a little bit of life back, and yet we want to hang on to every moment too.

So it's with a tear in my eye that I say "Happy birthday to my gorgeous (big) little boy!" x

Wednesday, 17 February 2010

Why rich people make me feel crap

I know this shouldn't be the case - and I know the problem's with me and not with them... but whenever I see rich people I feel really crap.

Of course this doesn't happen much. I live in a small town and there's no glamorous shops and not much money on obvious display... but last weekend my husband took me to a very posh hotel in London. It was a charity do and his company had sponsored a table so we got to go to the party and stay at the hotel. (Rare night out without the kids who stayed with Granny!)

It was fabulous and I loved every minute of it... except for the first few moments when I walked into the reception area. Everyone looked exceptionally well groomed, well dressed, well heeled.

It seemed to me that everyone else had this wonderful sense of self assurance and I... well I just wished for a Harry Potter style invisibility cloak.

Suddenly, every shred of confidence drained away and I was painfully aware that my luggage was old and tattered and that my little Next anorak (that I love) could not compete with the beautiful, dressy fur jackets and long, expensive coats. That's of course not mentioning the jewellery and the shoes and designer luggage.

I'm never going to be able to compete with that level of wealth (I'm as poor as a church mouse's poorest relation at the moment) so I guess I just need to get over myself but I did wonder how the £56m lottery couple will feel in about a year from now once they have acquired all of those trappings. Will they feel equal to the posh people in the luxury hotels and restaurants - or will something still feel not quite right inside?

Tuesday, 9 February 2010

I told you I was in a muddle...

Life has been muddled to say the least.

I have written nothing on this blog for almost a month mainly because of the total chaos ... how does everyone else cope?

I am constantly amazed to see everyone keeping up their blogs despite kids and work and ironing and shopping and ... well when do you sleep that's what I want to know? Boy I could sure use those eight hours doing something more practical!

Anyway - mid-Feb resolution... blog more!

Friday, 15 January 2010

Should I force my son to wear a hat and scarf?

He's six years old - and for some reason he's decided that he hates hats and scarves. He'll wear gloves without a problem - but flat refuses a hat and scarf.

Through the recent cold spell - it's been a bit of a problem. Myself and my three year old, heading out, wrapped up in layer upon layer of clothing... my eldest, with his coat unzipped, looking freezing.

Before I had kids, I would have said, 'Make him wear a hat - you're his mother - you're the adult!' But now I realise that it's just not that easy.

I tried for a while - but decided that the daily fights were just not worth it - and besides - my victory was pointless as he never wore his hat at playtime and generally tried to lose it by hometime - so I'd end up scouring the classroom for it every afternoon.

I've given up - he's cold - I look like I'm a neglectful mother - but at least we can leave the house without fighting every morning!

Am I right to let him have his own way - or should I force him to wrap up?

Monday, 11 January 2010

Snow happy

My kids adore the snow... it was fantastic to see them; their faces pressed up against the window, watching the snow flakes fall like feathers from the sky.

We didn't build a snowman - it was the wrong kind of snow. Too powdery. Instead we had the mother of all snowball fights in the back garden.

Hubby was working from home because of the traffic chaos and so - around about lunch time we all donned wellies and woolies and out we went.

It was boys versus girls which was a bit mean as I'm the only girl - and it's fair to say I got smashed by several good 'uns - but I can't remember having so much fun.

Afterwards we all came in, exhausted and breathless and numb with cold, and hubby made cheese on toast.


Sunday, 10 January 2010

What's my problem with thank you cards?

Every year it's the same. I just can't motivate myself the write the damn things. My family have never bothered with them at Christmas time - maybe that's the reason - but hubby's side are very keen.

Every year I buy a pack of pretty cards with the best intentions but can never quite motivate myself to write them out and send them.

Now here we are again, well over a week into the new year and they're still sitting on the kitchen table making me feel guilty.

OK - it's time to stop procrastinating and get on with the job!