Friday night: Before and after kids

“Thank God its Friday” is an often uttered phrase, but now I have kids it has a completely different meaning from when I was in my child-free early twenties.

Then I used to desperately wish the week away and rush out of work on a Friday to spend a couple of hours getting ready, before heading out with my friends. Friday night out was usually followed by Saturday night out… and the weekend would be a blur of blue wkd and apple sourz. Then Monday would come and I’d start the countdown again.

Now when Friday rolls round, I’m thankful for very different reasons. Like no more school run for 2 days.

I’m thankful that my Hubby will be off work for the next couple of days. Then I might be able to wee in peace as there is another grown up to entertain the kids for a few minutes. If I’m really lucky, I might even get a lie in and a cup of tea in bed.

I’m thankful that I’m off work and we get to do stuff together as a family, even if it’s just going shopping or watching a family film, or chauffeuring the kids to various soft play parties.

I’m thankful that I don’t have to spend ages applying eyeliner or picking the perfect outfit, only to end up sweating and drenched in other people’s drinks with only a hangover to look forward to the next day.

Instead I’ll slip into some comfy pyjamas and watch a film. Maybe I’ll even have a glass of wine. Of course I’ll fall asleep on the sofa before I’ve finished it. That’s like the Mum law.

I’m thankful that now in my (early) thirties and as a mum to 2 young kids it’s perfectly acceptable to chose an uneventful evening in over a sticky dance floor and ridiculously impractical shoes.

Don’t get me wrong, I still enjoy a good night out with friends, but it generally involves cocktails at a nice restaurant rather than shots and a takeaway kebab. When I do go ‘out’ out, with my mum tum tucked into a pair of trusty skinny jeans and my ‘sensible’ heels on, I usually end up feeling ancient and boring next to all the fashion – conscious inebriated teens.

And it’s not because I’m grown up, or in anyway too good for all of that. It’s simply because by the time the weekend rolls around I’m just too tired. Too tired to spend more than 20 minutes prepping to leave the house. Too tired to queue at packed bars or to dance for hours. Too tired to contemplate having to deal with being woken up at 6am after a 3am bed time – especially if the kids haven’t been sleeping well the rest of the week. And – thanks to my lack of practice over the past few years – I know that even a mild hangover will render me too tired to do anything of value for the next week.

Maybe I am just getting old. But tonight I’ll be quite content watching TV and maybe enjoying a glass of wine. Until I fall asleep on the sofa.

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Our Weekly Roundup #19

The first week of the Summer holidays got off to a busy – and wet – start.

  • Izzy had her first ever dance concert. She has done a couple of medal tests before but this was the first time she has done a group dance, in front of a packed audience. She sang out loud and looked like she was having a great time. After a dress rehearsal and 2 shows though she is now shattered and we can put away the leotards and ballet shoes for a while as she has no more dance classes over the summer.IMG_20160722_195943
  • I took the kids to a local play centre that has recently opened near us. They got to learn about some animals – Clara wouldn’t touch the bunny or the guinea pig but as soon as the hedgehog came out she whispered to me “I’m going to stroke that one.” She stroked an owl too, but her favourite animal was the the tortoise, and she couldn’t stop watching him.
  • The girls had their first play date of the summer, and Izzy loved catching up with her friend who she doesn’t get to see very often as they go to different schools. They have known each other since they were little babies and when they do get together they are like a little married couple. Making sure we fit in some playdates was one of the many things on our Summer holiday bucket list.img_20160720_170708.jpg
  • Also on the list was a visit to The Beacon, which is a local museum. Over summer they are hosting a Lego exhibition so the girls spent some time looking at models and building their own – which mainly ended in tears after Clara karate chopped Izzy’s tower that she was so proud of. It was so cute as we were about to leave Clara trotted over to the lady who was painting faces and asked her to paint hers – she sat so still and was really chuffed with the rainbow, although it didn’t last five minutes before it was smeared all over her face! IMG_20160724_155458img_20160727_222252.jpg
  • The girls also made some biscuits. I really had to try not to get involved and just let them go for it – and I love the way that Clara put Olaf’s mouth upside down, like he’s pulling a face. She was really proud of herself, though they could barely wait for the icing to set before tucking in – their favourite bit of baking! img_20160727_222616.jpg

Our Weekly Roundup #18

  • It’s been a busy school week for Izzy. Her team won sports day, but unfortunately we weren’t able to watch as it was moved inside the school hall due to the weather. She also had her last disco as a reception pupil and got her first ever school report.IMG_20160715_200847
  • I was really pleased to see that Izzy is performing ‘as expected’ in all areas, but especially proud to see her described as a caring and thoughtful little girl, who is very confident and has made lots of friends. She apparantly loves role play, especially acting out Star Wars, loves telling the whole class her weekend news and is sometimes a bit too chatty – no surprise there then!IMG_20160715_200630
  • Izzy was also really pleased with the presents she made for her teacher and teaching assistants. She very patiently painted the school badge onto 4 canvas shopping bags. She was so proud of herself and it was all her own idea.IMG_20160715_201239
  • Clara enjoyed going on a bear hunt at playgroup, complete with bear ears and face paint. She took a long time to come out of her shell at playgroup, hardly speaking to anyone for the first few months and clinging to me, but now she is very chatty and has been making lots of new friends.IMG_20160714_231118
  • It was my birthday and also our 3rd wedding anniversary last week. We celebrated my birthday with a trip out for Sunday lunch and then to the cinema to see The Secret Life of Pets. I also managed a child free night out with a couple of friends for some tapas and prosecco!
  • Despite all the cake and prosecco I managed to lose weight when I went for my weekly Slimming World weigh in. That’s 11 lb in 5 weeks. I doubt I’ll be wearing a bikini by the time we go on holiday but at least I might feel a bit more confident by the pool!
  • My husband did his first ever sky dive this weekend and raised over £1k for the  Alzheimers Society. He loved it and now I’m seriously considering giving it a go – well it is on my bucket list!

Blog Roundup

  • The 12 stage of dealing with headlice – warning, this post will make your head itch!

The 12 stages of dealing with headlice

Nits. The one word guaranteed to send you into a head-scratching frenzy. Even as I write this my head feels unbearably itchy just with the thought of them!

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Getting headlice is an inevitable part of being a child. They spend so much time with other kids at school, huddled together at the desk or hugging at playtime, giving those creepy crawlies the perfect breeding ground. However, even knowing that they are extremely common and pretty much unavoidable isn’t enough to stop you feeling completely mortified when your children – or you – get them.

We have recently made it through a headlice infestation. And it wasn’t pretty. Here’s the 12 stages you can look forward to if your kids are unlucky enough to play host to the persistent little blighters.

  1. Discover a whole colony of adult headlice and hundreds of eggs at the most inconvenient time. Like right before you are heading to work/on the school run. You wonder how on earth they got that bad and feel guilty for not noticing sooner.
  2. Spend a small fortune at the pharmacy for some treatment and then treat everyone in the family, just to be on the safe side. After hours of painstakingly combing through the kids hair with a metal comb and trying not to bawk at the little critters falling in the bath, you think the worst is over. It’s not.
  3. You can’t stop scratching your own head but try to convince yourself it’s just psychological. It’s not.
  4. Wash everything on a 90 degree wash. Twice.
  5. Inform the parents of kids who have played with your infected little darling that they might wish to do a head check. Their reactions tell you if these are ‘your kind of people’ or if you are forever going to be avoided at the school gates.
  6. Continue to check the kids hair every night, eventually finding more newly hatched headlice.
  7. Yet more treatment is applied, double the dose this time, followed by another hour spent picking out the tiny eggs with your finger nails.
  8. Wash everything again.
  9. You find yet more nits. And discover they have spread to siblings. Repeat steps 6-8 over and over for what feels like the rest of your life.
  10. Quietly contemplate shaving everyone’s hair off. Including your own.
  11. You are sick of washing bedding and towels everyday. Consider having a bonfire.
  12. Finally, the family have been nit free for about a week now. Consider getting some kind of plaque made in celebration.

So there is light at the end of the lice- infested tunnel. Where there is less scratching and combing and your house no longer smells of tea tree and isn’t filled with the grumbling of kids who are fed up of leaning over the bath while you inspect every millimetre of scalp.

Until the next time!

Have you had the misfortune of dealing with headlice yet? We eventually got rid of them with Full Marks treatment – what worked for you? 

Our Weekly Roundup #17

  • Last weekend was packed full of parties – one each for the kids and a friend’s housewarming party for me. Clara danced and sang with Queen Elsa while Izzy ran riot in the soft play. Though going to a 5 year olds soft play party at 11am on a Sunday morning was not the ideal place to be with a hangover!

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  • This weekend the celebrations continued with a wedding. Our friends had to reschedule their big day when the December storms put the hotel under 3 feet of water on the morning of their nuptuals, leaving half the wedding party stranded for a couple of days and the Groom unable to reach his Bride. Despite the torrential rain this week, they finally managed to say “I do” and it was a really great celebration,  complete with a hypnotist for entertainment, which was freaky, amazing and hilarious is equal measures!

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  • The dreaded head lice have infested our home this week for the first time. Izzy started the week thinking it was pretty cool and saying “Aw how cute, look at them wiggling around in the bath” but the novelty soon wore after the third day of going through her hair with the metal comb. I’ve mainly spent all my spare time over the past week, and a small fortune, dealing with the persistent pests – even poor Clara ended up with them – but I think we are finally nit free! For now anyway!
  • Clara has really taken to dressing up lately. She loves twirling in a princess dress, zooming around as “superman” or fighting with her big sister to have a turn with the storm trooper helmet!  It is quite scary being greeted by a storm trooper first thing in the morning!

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  • Of course the big news since my last roundup (it’s really been too long!) has been the EU referendum. I was disappointed with the result. Yes it might all work out fine in the end. Maybe the risk will pay off. We will probably recover financially. Eventually. But right now, and for the foreseeable future, it’s created this heavy tension and divided a nation. Now there is a significant number of EU citizens and immigrants who are only here thanks to the EU’s influence – hard working people who have settled here, raised families here and have embraced the British culture – feeling unwelcome in the country that they call home. But, there were lots of different reasons why people voted the way they did, and there were advantages and drawbacks on both sides of the argument. This was a decision made by the people of the UK but we are all responsible for what happens next, no matter which way we voted. We can’t let this one decision define us, or how the rest of the world sees the UK. And we can’t let it tear us apart at a time when we are all facing uncertainty.

What has everyone else been up to this week?