Another week and another warning that we shouldn't let our children be on a screen for too long. I totally get it, you don't want your kids being zombielike after they've watched YouTube for an hour and a half. Equally I have lots of things to do, the dinner, the washing and it just buys me a little bit of time. It also gives her a little bit of chill, she's been chasing around all day in the woods, getting muddy and to sit quietly and watch an episode of Peppa Pig is great.
I feel like I'm doing good parenting if I say to my four year old "put the iPad down and come and watch the tele!"
And I've seen the tutting majority in a restaurant, when I gave my daughter my phone to watch videos, they look scornfully at me, but what would you rather a full on meltdown tantrum to go with your dinner or a nicely behaved child sitting at table watching a screen.
And then this week another report saying that we need more computer programmers so we should let our children go on computers more, make your mind up.
In the summer holidays were all looking for things to keep the kids occupied, so please can I pass on my little tip to you. Having just got back from a very rainy and muddy Camp Bestival weekend at certain times it was easier said than done entertaining our little rugrats, but we stumbled upon something rather wonderful when inside the tent because rain had stopped playing.
Eating jelly with a fork it turns out is hilarious, tasty and takes a long time cos it keeps dropping off. How brilliant, I'm applying this principle to everything during the next month to see if it will hold off the screams of "Mummmmmmyyyyyyy!" (See my last blog) I wonder what else I can do it with? Spaghetti with a cocktail stick? Drawing only with things found in the garden?
I’m off to my little ones school induction tonight and I’m nervous as hell. Would it be ok to take her or does that flag up that I’m “one of those ” yknow single mothers? Do I look stupid asking what time school starts and finishes? Shouldn’t I just know that information?
What happens if they don’t have garlic bread on the menu every day? I swear that kid lives on the stuff! And I’m imagining her crying her heart out when she realises they don’t do jam sandwiches either.
And will I burst into tears in anticipation like I did in my ante-natal class?
Mess made- a few crumbs from the sandwich and a muddy footprint on the edge of the seat
Bonus points for the Toyota Yaris- when you pull away at a junction it sounds like you’re taking off, which also doubles as a great in car game of aeroplanes
No sooner had we pulled away from the show room but there came a tiny voice from the back seat asking for food. As she had her lunch box beside her I asked to get something from that rather than grappling in the front for a half eaten wagon wheel.
My 4 year old picked out a yoghurt with no spoon (thank goodness, can you imagine it in a moving vehicle? She manages to get it on the tele and in her hair when she eats it at the table) and a jam sandwich. I daren’t look, somehow jam always ends up in the air but then is drawn to any material thing to make it red and sticky, no good when you’ve set yourself a challenge to keep this Toyota Yaris looking plush.
My daughter slurps her milk and says “ahh” after gulping it down like a grandma with a cup of tea. Nothing grates on me as much as hearing someone eating. The chewing, the champing, the smacking of the lips all do my brain in. Whilst living at home with my folks I couldn’t even wolf down breakfast in the same room as anyone else…and now I have a 3 year old who is the noisiest eater, in the world, ever!
Even as a baby she would suck her milk from the bottle at 109 decibels but listening to her get through a bowl of ‘Disney princess pasta’ pierces my ears! Eating a bag of wotsits it feels like she makes about 54 crunches or ‘thunderclaps’ on each crisp. But the worst is when she has a bowl of spaghetti Bolognese and chomps her way through, smacking her lips, eeuuurrrggghhh makes me want to scream. Even the clang of the spoon on her teeth as she sucks up a yogurt gets to me. I’m sure she does it to wind me up!
I can’t really believe that even before my daughter is 4, we are already in a birthday party war. The competition is real. You can’t let your little darling down by just giving them a birthday tea with a couple of mates, who they will row with over a My Little Pony anyway. Oh no, we’re going all out now. Spend less than hundreds of pounds and prepare to feel judged to be the worst mother ever. A shop-bought cake will be frowned upon, but you haven’t tasted anything I’ve cooked myself and I would rather not have 25 kids with food poisoning. If I’m honest, I feel quite posh booking a hall and an entertainer, real “keeping up with the jones’” stuff, but I know people who would book an actual castle and Mr Tumble if available.
I’ve made a list of all the food to get, just sausage rolls and party rings, then I heard a suggestion that I should cater for the adults too, you’re kidding right? They can scoff a jam sandwich if there’s any left. And of course you can’t leave without a party bag, a slice of cake and a bottle of bubbles in my day, now resembling an Oscars goodie bag, with a personal shopping trip and a holiday to the Caribbean included. I’m just trying to make it the best party in the world.
Yes, we did go out and have a few drinkies. Yes, I was sipping prossecco when little one fell asleep on my mates sofa. Yes, we did finish our game of trivial pursuit. No, I can’t see the floor for my little ponies and Disney princesses. And yes, we are having pizza for breakfast.