I am Slightly Chuffed Mum

Last week was pretty exciting for me and my little old Blog.

On Thursday morning I got an email to say that I have made the SHORTLIST in the V by Very Blog Awards.  The S-Mum is Shortlisted in TWO categories.

  1. Best parenting Blog
  2. Best Blog Post for my post “I am Saying it Out Loud Mum” about my own struggles with “My Little Bitch, Anxiety”  

(Read it here  

https://the-smum.com/2017/06/11/i-am-saying-it-out-loud-mum/

 

V for Very Blog Awards 2017_Judging Round Button_Shortlist

http://blogawardsireland.com/

Then, that VERY evening, I received ANOTHER email from the lovely folk at Maternity and Infant to tell me that I have reached the FINAL in their Boots Maternity and Infant Awards.

https://maternityandinfant.ie/awards/

 

Now, let me explain to you what a HUGE deal this is to me…  Out of the 26 blogs nominated, only 10 make it to the final.  This in itself is exciting and the fact that I made it to the top 10 excites me no end.  But the MOST exciting thing is seeing my little old name up beside the other 9 bloggers, all of whom I follow and many of whom I hold in regard as being Parenting Blogger royalty in Ireland.

I can’t stop looking at the image of the ten Blog names.

And I can’t thank my readers enough for considering my Smumbles to be worth their time and energy and votes.

Should I never win a thing, I honestly don’t care.

I shall go to these ceremonies and meet lovely people and enjoy the fact that somewhere on the interweb, my words are being recognized as not being complete and utter waffle!

SO thank you to V by Very and the Bloggies and Thank you to Maternity and Infant and to everyone who is in any small way responsible for The S-Mum getting onto these wonderful lists.FB_IMG_1505424273626.jpg

I am She’s Punishing Me Mum

Smile and Nod.
Mammy must smile and nod…
Mammy is very good at the smiling and the nodding. 😆😶

“She’s the best girl. There’s not a bother with her.” 💕

Every day I hear this. And the lovely Ladybelles who say it, mean it 100%.❤
And I smile and I nod and I agree, but as I do, my inner Mammy voice is laughing.
She is laughing hard.
So very hard.

On the outside, I Smile and Nod…
What I’m THINKING however, is “Let me tell you, as a Mammy with previous experience of a “Street Angel, House Devil”, that while she is indeed being ‘the Best Girl’ and giving you ‘Not a bother’ here all day, she is simply saving all of her energy for the Wilderbeastial Demonic Darling that she will morph into when I get her into the car.” 😈

It begins with her luring Mammy into a false sense of security with her displays of excitement as she runs into my arms when I arrive to collect her. Cue “Ooooooohs” and “Aaaaaaaahs” from all with ovaries in the room. She hugs and kisses and answers “Uhhuuuuu” in her adorable little husky voice as I carry her little Koala Bear Butt 🐨to the car. I breathe her in and sniff her sticky hair and coo at her, knowing full well that I may enjoy it while it lasts. 😂

Once in the car (maybe even before I get her strapped in if she’s feeling particularly thick with Mammy), her demeanour changes. Sometimes, it’s gradual, building up as we approach home, revving up with every gear change. Sometimes it’s instantaneous, spontaneous combustion because I’ve looked at her wrong, or asked her a question, or you know, breathed.

It escalates with a simple “No”.
Not just an utterance of negativity or disagreement. A proper, teenage “NO”, complete with attitude and challenge. When the “NO” is accompanied by the furrow of the brows, we know we are entering the beginning of the tantrum. 😣

By the time we reach home, my excitement at the thought of an evening at home with my Baby has been replaced by a devastation of the reality that ONCE AGAIN, I have NO control over the moods of my minion. Any notions I had of a picture perfect evening of #Mammywins have been left at the creche. And once again I remember, that I have NO idea what the hell I am doing.
I am winging this Mammy craic, 100fricken%. I’m scrambling my brain for tricks and clever Mammyisms that might avert the direction of the storm that is brewing in the back seat.

I throw promises around like a Politician before an Election.
“We’re going to have pizza for tea!”
“NO!”
“Will we play jigsaws when we get home?”
“NO!”
“I can’t wait to get snuggles when we get home!”
“NO!”
and eventually (yes always) “Will we watch Peppa?”
(Hold breath…)

Princess “YEEEEEEAH!”
Mini-Me “Aw Maaaaaaaaaammy, not again!” (insert eye roll here)
Me “FML” (Probably under my breath. Maybe… Maybe SLIGHTLY audible. Bad Mammy.)😐😂

Parenting experts and friends with kids have explained to me many times in the past, that such behaviour is normal and that the child acting in such a manner is a “compliment” because she feels that she can finally release her frustrations and confusion at the world, in the arms of her favourite person. That I am her safe place and that it all means that she loves me.😶

SOME days, I buy this. Other days, I prefer to see it that she is a little wagon who actually HATES me and is determined to PUNISH her evil Mammy for abandoning her cute, bad-tempered little fudgeybutt to go to work. She sees me coming, smells the Mammy-guilt off me. After her initial “Oh there’s my Mammy” excitement, her mind goes straight to “Hang on a second. WHERE do you think YOU were all day Woman? Did you DARE to drink warm coffee and have adult conversations? Do you not know that YOU ARE MY SLAVE?” 😐

She has to fit 8 hours of reminding Mammy who is the BOSS, into a very short evening. And she must make sure that Mammy PAYS for leaving her at the Fablis and fun-filled creche, where she spends her days being loved and played with and fed and stimulated without the tellybox, and where she is the “best girl” and gives them all “not a bother”. She nevers bites or screams NOoooooooooooooo or kicks or throws custard or cries or scratches the lovely girls.

No,
She saves that for Mammy Bear.
Because she loves me and I am special.
And apparently because I am her safe place. 😍😆

Right now, she is playing with sudocrem…but she’s no longer screeching at me, so we’ll roll with it.

Smiles and nods. 😙

#fml
#mammyguilt
#yessheistheboss

I am Some Mammy Poppins Hacks Mum

So we have survived the first week of normality and reality with everyone back to School, Childcare and work. I don’t know how you other Mammies are feeling this morning, but I for one am exhaustipated. Even though the girls have been up around 7am most mornings over the summer, suddenly having to have everyone out the door, fully dressed and even partially fed, has been a challenge.

It will take a few weeks to get back into the swing of it, but here are a few things that I did this week which helped, if only a little bit.

  1. Meal plan: I did out a plan for the week of what meals we’d be eating and then based the shopping list on what I needed for these. Mini-Me’s lunch tends to be the same every day, so that is handy and I’ll get back into the habit of making extra dinner for me to have as lunch the next day too. It’s now Sunday morning and the list worked so well, that there is NOTHING left in the fridge and so we might just have to go out for Brunch.

2. All hail the Slowcooker: Unfortunately, with The Him and Jim working 482 hours per week, family dinners are only a weekend thing here, so yes I usually end up cooking twice a day. When I’m off, this is not a problem, but now back at work, where you have to condense your whole day into 2 hours, it becomes one. And so my trusty slowcooker will be returned to regular use.

3. Get up early: Yeah yeah, cliched I know, but it is so true. I’m an early bird; not because I like getting out of bed. No. I LOVE my bed. But I also love having an uninterrupted shower and a full hot cup of coffee. If I’m not up at least 40 minutes before the girls, morning melts into mayhem. But if I can be up, washed, caffeinated, muck-uped and have the lunches packed BEFORE the babylink starts to flash, things are a whole lot more peaceful. If all I have to do is to focus on getting THEM ready, we can do it with a LOT less stress than if we all fall out of bed at the same time.

  1. Daily Drawers: I introduced this little trick when Mini-Me was in Naionra and it’s working a treat again already. I bought this stack of drawers and labeled the front. Every Sunday, I put clean pants and socks into the drawers. Her PE gear goes into the day she has PE and her shoes go into the bottom drawer every evening when she takes them off and the uniform hangs beside it. She loves it and it means we don’t have the “Wherethefeckareyourshoesforgodssakewewillbelate” debachle every morning! It’s also great for encouraging them to dress themselves.

5. Clean on a Thursday night: Since I have been working, even before I had the girls, I have always tried to be in the habit of cleaning on a Thursday. I do whatever washing needs done, clean the bathrooms, hoover and mop, and give the kitchen a once over. It means that when we get home on a Friday evening, the house is more pleasant than usual. And while the breakfast dishes and mess from Friday morning might be waiting for us, the house itself is generally clean and so apart from throwing uniforms and work clothes in the machine on Friday night, Mammy can focus on important things when they go to bed on Friday night… like what I’m going to watch and whether I want red or white!

Now, do NOT get me wrong. Mary Poppins I am not, but these are 5 things that are GENERALLY easy to turn into habits. Apart from the odd week, I’ll manage to maintain most of these goals and therefore, most of my sanity!

If you have any other tricks of #parentingwin hacks, please share them in the comments.

I am So not a Pottering Mum

Oh Joyful Joyful Joy! It is FriYay.

As it is the last Friday of the summer holidays, Mammy figured it was PROBABLY about time she started some Back-to-school shopsy. I dropped Princess to childcare and headed into town with Mini-Me, fully intending to “potter” around the shops for a few hours, casually picking up the bits and pieces she needs for returning to her wonderful, joyeous, heavenly educational establishment.

I anticipated a leisurely day of “pottering” with my first-born, where we would hold hands and giggle and have treats, and Mini-Me (free from the competitive…sorry, companionship, or the Wobbler) would lavish in having Mammy’s undivided attention and behave like a Walton child…

And THEN I remembered that I am NOT one of those InstaMammies who can “potter”, especially when accompanied by a 5 year old She-Witch who HATES shopping, starts sentences with “Mammy, in the olden days when you were little…” and had asked “Are we going home now?” 1275 times by mid-day. 😣😣😣 No.

Mammy doesn’t potter. Rather, Mammy TROTS. Like a drunk Pig who can smell the truffles under the muck, I scrummaged through the rails of grey and navy tracksuit bottoms only to realise that every single fecking Mammy in the County had bought the 5-6yrs and 6-7yrs while THEY did their Back-to-school potter BACK IN feckin MAY! The WENCHES. 😈😅 I swear to you. There will be 11 year olds turning up to schools next week wearing 5-6 trousers, just so their Sanctimammies can scoff and tut “I told you so” at their screen tonight.

I eventually found trousers, only to discover that I had been truffling in the boys’ section, and after the kind lady directed me to the girls’ section, my futile search for the right size began again… (Seriously, the trousers are IDENTICAL. Why they BOTHER with separate sections, is beyond this last-minute Mamma.)

On top of the Back-to-school shite, we also had to scour the town for something nice for Mammy to wear tomorrow night for The Him and Jim’s Summer Shape Up Presentation night. I HAD ordered a FABLIS sexyful, lowcut (to the bellybutton like) jumpsuit, which looked AMAZING on Mylene-of-the-Klass online…

When it arrived however, I remembered that I shouldnt shop on the interweb after 2 glasses of malbec and that Mylene actually HAS boobage,so unless Littlewoods deliver instant boobjobs, the beautiful jumpsuit must be returned. How terribly sad I am about that. (I may writento them to suggest that their returns sheet should have a box marked “Not suitable for fried eggs” or “I forgot I don’t have boobs” or “WTF was I drinking?”😂😂)

I didn’t get anything. There’s NOTHING in the town, just like all the NOTHING in my wardrobe. But whatever. Mini-Me is now asleep after her day of torture, Princess is snoring and there’s a grape in a glass, begging for mouth-to-mouth. 😂😂🍷

How was your Friday? Any Feck-it-ups?

I am ‘So here’s the thing’ Mum…

“You will , you know!”

Everyone is the perfect parent…until they have children.”

Who said this first? I have no idea.

Who says it now? Me. Every single day!

I am the proud and enthusiastic Mama bear of a 5-year-old Drama Queen and a 21 month old Dictator. I spend my days winging it through EVERYTHING… breakfast, school runs, work, homework, dinner, bedtime, marriage.

Some days, I feel like I NEARLY have my shit together. Most days, I want to stomp my foot, throw and tantrum and call for my own Mammy! To many, I seem like I hold things together.

Those closest to me, know I’m a fraud.

I don’t know what I’m doing.

I don’t deal with everything in a calm and mature fashion.

I don’t adore my children every single second of every single day.

I don’t always have the schedule sorted.

I don’t always remember everything I’m supposed to.

I don’t always know what’s wrong with the baby, just by her cry.

I don’t always have a sparkly clean house. (Actually, I don’t EVER. Who does?)

I don’t always remember to wash the uniforms.

I don’t always want to get my No Diggity on in the bedroom.

I don’t always feed them homemade meals.

I don’t always give the right answer.

I don’t always say the right thing.

I don’t switch off my brain, even when it’s His turn to get up with them.

I can’t.

Because I “Mammy” 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Sometimes, I yell.

Sometimes, I bribe.

Sometimes the fridge is empty.

Sometimes, I’m so exhausted that I let them eat breakfast cereal for dinner.

Sometimes, I pretend I don’t hear the monitor and carefully kick Daddy so he’ll have to get up instead.

Sometimes, I let them watch TV…a lot.

Sometimes, I swear.

Sometimes, I wish it were bedtime at 3pm.

Sometimes, I cry so hard that my Husband doesn’t know what to say.

Sometimes, I like being at work because I get to finish a coffee in peace…and I don’t feel guilty. Sometimes, I get a babysitter and go out for dinner.

Sometimes, I hand the baby to Himself as he comes through the door and go for a run, or a pee. Sometimes, I feel like I’m so utterly useless that someone, somewhere will certainly report me to an authority of some kind.

But ALWAYS, I love. I am NOT a Stepford Mammy. I will never get it ALL right. No one can, because a perfect Mammy doesn’t exist, and as long as I love my girls fiercely, I’m already doing it right.

The moment that a Mammy realises that there is no such thing as “The right way” or “the proper way” of parenting, is light bulb moment. When you recognise that YOUR choices for your family are NO ONE’s business, a giant weight will be lifted off your tired shoulders.

You don’t have to justify your parenting. You don’t have to explain why you breastfeed, or don’t; why you chose this school instead of that one; why you put the baby in their own room at 3 months, or why they still sleep in your room 2 years on.

You don’t have to justify your parenting to ANYONE.

The ONLY people who matter in your home, are YOUR FAMILY. And nothing or nobody outside of that matters. If you are expecting your first Baby and reading this, with your jaw on the floor, thinking “I will NEVER do those things!”, You will you know!?

You will bribe.

You will eat leftovers.

You will survive on 2 hours of broken sleep.

You will use Babywipes for EVERYTHING.

You will hate your partner for sleeping. (Sometimes, you will hate them for breathing! 🙂 )

You will enjoy watching kids’ TV.

You will have a favourite CBeebies presenter.

You will spend your money on the best you can afford for your kids, while wearing a 15-year-old t-shirt yourself.

You will be so excited at the offer of a babysitter, that you cry. Oh, and you will cry; tears of frustration, tears of worry, tears of laughter and tears of pure, unconditional LOVE.

Because being a Mammy is sometimes crap, but it is ALWAYS wonderful.

And if you are wondering if you’ll be a good Mum?

You will, you know. x

I am Some Real Mums on the Tellybox Please Mum

Real Mammies lose it sometimes.
Real Mammies do NOT behave like the Mammies on the TellyBox…
Fact. 😶
Real Mammies, while we do indeed have our Mary of the Poppins moments, do not spend our days answering our minions in edumacated and enthusiastic, sing songy voices.  😅
So why do the TV shows aimed at our minions portray only Mammies who would give the authors of the Positive Parenting books the same satisfaction that one gets from polishing off a box of maltesers all by oneself?
Sickeningly sweet, always smiling, perky and positive and always saying the right thing, these Mammies dress head to toe in Marks of the Spensive, have Stepford Mammyesque hair doooos, and would put the most prim and perky primary school teacher to shame, with their well laid out everything and their general competency in all things Mammy.
But riddle me this Ladybelles?
If these shows, (which MUST be applauded for their educational and developmental content and tones), can  portray the world of a wobbler or a toddler or a minion so well, WHY do they lie to them about what parents should be?
“It’s OK (insert character name here). It’s normal to feel sad/confused/excited.”  the furry, talking animals tell their owners on our screens, before talking them through their emotions and making the world a wonderful place again.
But WHERE is the Mammy, or Daddy, who is tired? Where is the Mammy who explains firmly that NO, you can’t hit your sister or NO, It’s NOT OK to throw toys?  Where is the teenage sister who is throwing “shade” at the Mum?  Where is the Mum wiping yesterday’s yoghurt off the school uniform with a Babywipe as the child goes out the door? Where is the 4 year old crying that they can’t find the shoes that are RIGHT IN FRONT OF THEM? 😡😡
Just once, I would LOVE to see Topsy and Tim’s Mum lose her shit. I’d love to see her looking like crap, with bags under her eyes and toast stuck to her arse.  Just once, I would love to see one of the delightful, BFF twins throwing a complete strop because their beautiful Mammy puts beans too close to the fishfingers.
The Kiddy Channels should do a post watershed episode of Bing where “What would Flopsy do?” is answered by Flopsy “Flopsy will drink 3 glasses of wine when you go to bed Bing…you little prick,” and where we get to SEE Topsy and TIm’s Dad eating the remains of their uneaten dinners before he scrapes them in the bin, while Mammy cries at the table because she’s failing at EVERYTHING and huffing that “NO ONE EVER LISTENS TO MEEEEEEEE!” 😥😥
THEN, I MIGHT take them seriously, because at least I would possibly get some understanding about MY emotions and MY struggles and I might feel a bit more NORMAL!

 

Now, where is the remote?  I really should turn the channel over from the “Has gone to bed. We’ll be back in the morning screen!” 😂😂

How was your day?

I am Saddle and Sore Bum Mum 😅

Mammy’s bottom is sore.
Today, I sat upon the hard saddle of a bicycle.  The only hard saddle that Mammy is used to sitting on, is Jim’s …  you know the stationary, non-moving, non-dangerous, spinning bicycle that is BOLTED TO THE GROUND and which can NOT MOVE?

“Let’s hire the bikes!” suggested The Him when we arrived in Glenveagh.
“Oh fecking joy” thinks Mammy, but NEVER one to let The Him think her unfit or uncool or old and decrepit, and seeing the ACTUAL joy on Mini-Me’s face at the prospect of saving her little legs from the 4k walk, Mammy answered “What a glorious idea My Him. But as YOU are the manliest man in Manville, YOU have my permission to be manly and to strut your masculine Mannity by pulling the trailer containing your two cherubs.”

S-Mum’s FIRST hurdle was THE HELMET. You see my Lovelies, I do indeed have a superbly large and quite weirdly shaped cranium.  I like to think it’s all the brains, but in reality, it is a combination of genetic and bad luck.  (The last time I required a helmet was on a teambuilding horseriding day with my colleagues, when the Gobshite/man shouted to HIS colleague “Gone out the back and bring in the special hat”, before fitting me with a glorified bucket and sending me off on the spawn of Satan…a horse named Mary… shudder.)
But to my amazement, the helmet DOES FIT and so I am good to go.
S-Mum does not delight in the prospect of cycling a real live bicycle for the first time in AT LEAST 20 years, but then S-Mum sees that The Him’s bum looks quite wonderful on his manly bike and so decides to forgoe her trepidation and take one for the team.
“You go in front Darling” says The Him.
“Oh no My Him. I’d much prefer to follow you so I can see my precious minions. Be the man. I shall be a good wifey and follow you” answers I, patting myself on the back for being so cunning and clever. 😈

So off we went.  I sat on the saddle, nodded at the instructions the buck was giving me about gears or something, and wondered HOW the hell I would get out of the CARPARK, nevermind the whole way down to the castle, and back.
But do you know what?

Remember I did.

It really was “like riding a bike.” 😂😂😂
Yes, I was a bit wobbly, and yes I almost died 13 times before I got the hang of the brakes etc, but having spent my whole childhood on bikes with my sister and brother, it came back to me quickly.
I did however discover something interesting.
I have huge difficulty turning right!

Left? No bother.

Right?  Not so much. I felt like I was going to tip over.
Why? I have NO FECKING IDEA! Maybe it’s a sign that the left side of my brain has gone to mussh more than the right?
Anyway, we went, we saw, we cycled.
It was great fun.

The girls loved it, “woohoooooing” their way behind their Daddy.
After my initial wobbles, and as a result of my utter stubbornness, I actually enjoyed it…

And in fairness, the view was pretty impressive too. 😈😈😉😉
How was your Sunday Funday?

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