Check your passports, people. 

Obvs our holidays started with a proper full on cluster f**k. Not much beats going to check in online and finding the five year old’s passport has expired. **cue much weeping, emotional pooing and desperate clawing back of deposits**

We were meant to be going with my parents to Poland for two weeks of beach, lakes, cheap beer and sunshine.

Not any more.

Here’s what this disaster has taught me:

1) My husband is extremely understanding and kind and good-humoured in the face of my vast and far-reaching incompetence.

2) My parents are incredibly kind, adaptable and damn good in a crisis

3) People are immensely kind and generous: a family friend lent us his holiday home in Cornwall because he thought the balls up was such a hoot.

4) I am not the only one. Thank you to the awesome Sisterhood of the internet who have been in touch to tell me of their near-misses, holiday disasters and to reassure me it’s either raining where they’re on holiday/far too hot. You rock.

5) My kids couldn’t give two shits where they holiday.

This last one is the absolute best lesson. Our kids were vaguely aware that we might’ve been going on a plane (‘Will we get ill when we fly over GERMany Mummy?’) but didn’t bat an eyelid when we hauled ass down to Cornwall. William still thinks he’s abroad and swears the food ‘tastes funny in this country’ and that once again validates my decision to raise children in Norfolk where anything south of Thetford is foreign.

Our two are as happy as clams to be digging holes in the sand, eating two ice creams a day and tootling around museums. We were discussing time machines earlier and William said, if he could relive any day of his life, he’d go back to Monday when we all went to a castle. In the pissing rain.

The best moment of W’s life. #lowbar

And so now I know:

-My husband is bloody lovely.

-My parents must really love me.

-My kids don’t care where they holiday, as long as we’re all together.

Yeah, maybe these life lessons left me out of pocket but, without being too naff, I’m seriously considering not renewing that passport…

House Snoop

Sound the klaxon! It’s another house snoop! (Find previous one here)

I have been horrendously busy looking after my own children these last few weeks: no wonder parents hate teachers. Teachers are bloody lazy good for nothings who slope off for 2849 weeks of the year and make us parent our own bloody kids! Outrageous! 

Because of this incredible inconvenience,  I needed a quick post for all of my adoring fans and I realised my favourite posts of all posts are house snoops so here’s one for you. 

I have been wanting to do another one for a while but as soon as I tidy it’s a shit heap again so tough tits and enjoy the mess. 

Treat it like Spot the Difference/ Treasure Hunt. 

Can you spot:

-drying clothes

-wilting flowers 

-Scalextric set 

-spilt Lego 

-abandoned car seat 

-my sanity

Hallway: 


Garden room (sounds a bit stately but can’t think what else to call it)


Other shot of garden room 


Kids’ Playroom– my favourite room to not go in


Kitchen


Utility Bloody love this room and good thing too as spend a lot of time in here folding pants etc



Boys’ bog- didn’t really want to photograph bedrooms because boys asleep and ours is a mess. So here’s a treat instead 

Spare bedroom and en suite- one of the nicest rooms in the house so come stay!



But here are my favourites. 

Our bathroom 


So so so nice. Like being in a swanky hotel. Love it. 

The larder/booze stash

You’ll find me here pouring gins and stress-snacking

Disclaimer- we didn’t do any of the decorating or designing. That was done by the clever previous owners. We’ve barely even got around to hanging any of our thousand paintings or shelved even a fifth of our billion books so may share some ‘after’ shots later.

Hope you’ve had an enjoyable snoop! 

Five Signs You’ve Survived the First Week of Summer Hols

1) There is so much washing

So, so much washing. All the washing. 

2) You’re skint

You’ve done swimming, steam trains, soft play, lunch dates, the zoo. You’re brassick and you’ve still got to rustle up spending money for your hols and the pound’s fucked. 

3) Your internet pages look like this 


4) Your recycling bin looks like this 

Booze. Coffee. Comfort food. 

5) Your evening looks like this 


Happy holidays, dudes!

Nostalgia

I always think I feel a cold sneer of disdain for my home county, the home county of Kent. But tonight I drove from my childhood home to a wedding of a school friend across the Weald. 

I drove the routes my mum took me on when she was teaching me to drive. I sang along to Pearl Jam as I zipped past oast houses and black-beamed wonky cottages and dog-leg turned through narrow high-streets and I remembered as I drove. 

I remembered school bus journeys and house parties and long summer evenings and GCSE exams and cider nights out and bunking the train and living for friendships and how it all feels like a different person who is still the absolute essence of me. 

And when I got there, it was like a bit of that old me woke up again. I chatted to women who I hadn’t seen since we were teens on the seafront. I gossiped with friends who I never see but still feel I know. 

And I barn danced. I stripped that willow and do-si’d that do. 

I didn’t take any photos tonight but if I had you’d see me, hair flying, face grinning, feet tangling and me spinning and spinning and spinning until you couldn’t tell if it was me or the teen I once was. 

Breast-feeding is a Feminist Issue

I normally keep clear of controversy when it sparks on insta and twitter. I choose my battles and stick rigidly and narrowly to them (yeah, I’m on to you gender inequality- you better run.) but the hoo-ha over Unmumsy Sarah Turner’s post that dared to suggest ‘fed is best’ boggles my mind.

I combination fed William (nipple confusion is bullshit). It worked. He was happy. He’d take a bottle from his dad and I could still feed him to sleep. It worked a dream. He was fed. It was the best for our family.

Alex? I’d lost my mind. I kept being told to ‘try harder’ but I knew, I knew, he was tongue tie but the referral came too late. He was on the bottle. And he was fed. It was the best for our family.

And do you know what? Breast-feeding is a feminist issue. It’s another way that women are made to feel they’ve ‘failed’. It’s another way in which fathers are distanced and disenfranchised. It’s another way that women are discouraged from leaving the domestic sphere (it’s a lot easier to work, go out, drink and be merry when you’re not a leaking bag of hormones with a baby dangling off you). And, judging by the explosive reaction to Sarah’s innocuous enough comment that ‘fed is best’, it’s also another excuse for the media and parents to pit women against women.

I am sympathetic to women who found feeding easy and can’t understand why others don’t. My mum always thought women who complained of period pain were being a bit soft because she’d only ever found it mildly uncomfortable. I am intolerant of people who say they have food intolerance (wheat gives you tummy ache? Fart and get over it!). I still partly think people who have hay fever are just being weak. I am not sympathetic because I find having periods, eating wheat and being around pollen a breeze and have been known to do all three at the same time- take last week’s picnic for example. It’s the same for breast feeding- if you found it easy, I get why you may resent other mothers not doing it but BACK OFF.

I live by Amy Poelher’s wise words: ‘fine for her, not for me’. It’s the toughest gig of them all but ultimately, all parents are just doing their best so step away from the comments section, log off the internet, jump down from your high horse and go and smell the roses… if your allergies will let you.

bottlefed

Wonderful Women

You’ve known me since college

When we were in our first jobs

We would drink tea and gossip

About how all men were knobs.

 

We would finish at four

And head to the pub

Meet up with our colleagues

And eat bar snacks for grub

 

Then we met lovers

Now husbands or exes

And discuss bitter bickers

Between the two sexes.

 

Then came the children

The fruit of our wombs

The soft plays and parties

In parish halls and front rooms

 

Mat leave meet ups followed

And spent up the Dinos

Where we talk politics by day

And at night became winos.

 

Then came the heart break

Of long-distance love

As some moved down south

Others miles above.

 

But when we meet up

The years melt away

You make me feel 20

And less wrinkly and grey.

 

We laugh at old jokes

Put the world to rights

And wonder if we can wear

Short skirts without tights.

 

You know the real me

A reminder of life

Before I became ‘Miss’

Or ‘mummy’ or wife.

 

We don’t really get mushy

Or acknowledge our luck

That we find each other interesting

And as funny as fuck.

 

But let me say now,

Though it’s not what we do,

That you’re all bloody marvellous

And I really love you.

Parenting Snakes and Ladders

Welcome to this exciting game. Choose a colour that doesn’t show the stains and let’s play!

Get everyone up, fed, shoed and out the door in time for the school run. 

Move forward three spaces and move quickly not unless you’ll miss the bell. 

Realise no one has had their teeth brushed. 

Shrug and remember they’ll grow another set. Shame on you for thinking that! Fall back two spaces!

Realise you’ve done three hours of the day with toddler breakfast wept on to your shoulder. 

Take two steps forward to the washing machine then three steps back to laundry basket to sniff-test another top to put on. 

Take toddler to a gymnastics class. 

Shimmy  forward two spaces. 

Piss yourself on the gymnastics trampoline. 

Serves you right, you smug twat. Slink back two spaces. 

Lunch is chocolate cake, Quavers and Paw Patrol. 

Go back two spaces and have a word with yourself. 

School pick up success! Someone spoke to you in the play ground and you respected boundaries and social norms! 

Skip forward four spaces hand in hand with your new friend. Let go of her hand or move back another space, needy!

Remember you’ve booked the kid a haircut and kid behaves immaculately throughout. 

Move forward two spaces: one for booking it, another for raising such a well behaved child. 

Haircut has exposed tan lines. You are negligent and now your child will get skin cancer/be really moley like you. 

Move back in time two months and apply suncream. 


It’s supper time- one nibbles elegantly on home-grown strawberries, the other refuses to eat anything other than Kinder Eggs. 

Make a move like parenting: one step forward, one step back.

 

Move forward a space for every thing you do that results in survival between 4pm and bedtime. 

Bedtime!

You win at Parenting Snakes and Ladders! 

Your prize is a spritzer and two episodes of 24 before bed. 

Great game! See you at 5am for another round!