Wednesday, 24 September 2008

Snugglebunny - yes I really wrote such a nauseating word.

Sproglet has many new words. 'Duggg' for dog. 'Car' for car. Unfortunately the word' nig-nog' for the 'Ninky-Nonk' from 'In the Night Garden' and the like. Bless him - he bounds out of his bed and careers into us shouting 'La La' 'Duice' and 'Outide' while he directs me towards the TV and coco-pops in that order.

Best of all he shouts 'MAMA!' every time I walk into a room - with such gusto and joy that I feel like I have won an award every time. He is going through a 'Mummy' period where basically, I rock. Yay me! No matter what Husband does, what treats he bribes with or remote that he controls - I am king. Sproglet snuggles onto my lap and tucks his head in, or throws his arms tight round me and plants over long kisses on my face. Even though his never ending cold means I frequently am slimed with snot in the process, I am thrilled. Most mornings he comes into bed with me while I try to raise the will to shift myself out of it. He gazes up at me and tries to lift off my eye mitt things and picks at my glamorous mouth guard (have gritted my back teeth down to hell - this shield is an unfortunate necessity if I want to enjoy steak in life). I must look pretty scary with wild tossing/turning hair, embedded leftover make-up, ear plugs swinging to said hair and gumily trying to talk with a big rugby-player-friendly guard in my gob. But he stares at me like I am a goddess and strokes my face with his tiny hands, giggling and talking incessantly.

As we kick into Autumn - central heating at the ready, jumpers pulled out of the back of the closet, excuses to eat cake (gotta protect myself with an added layer of fat through harsh winter) - it is time to hibernate is it not? Lots of tea, stodgy food, oakey reds and tonnes of biscuits... and snuggling. Snuggle whatever the hell you can - blankets, stuffed animals, strangers, your plasma - whatever. Tis the season of snuggling - and no one does this better than Sproglet; with his freshly washed soft curls, clean jammies and blissful baby skin, he has the fine art of this down pat. Like all good things though, he reaches the end of his snuggle and jumps up - usually to get yet another book to read. But while it lasts, I'm telling you, nothing on earth comes close.

Saturday, 20 September 2008

Time flies

How come the supermarkets are full of chrimbo chocs, trees and tacky gift sets and yet we are basking in August like sunshine? What is with this hurrying through the year malarkey? Is the credit crunch forcing shops to get in there early hoping that if they remind us for long enough we will indeed succumb and begin our yearly festive shop fest?

Xmas shopping is hell on wheels so maybe getting it started soon would be a good thang. I digress - what is bothering me is how this year has run away with me. Jan crawled by as did Feb then I got my job and zooooom - Halloween is round that corner. I haven't popped back to Belfast all year to see my folks and friends and suddenly my Mum has booked her Xmas flights... Is it me or are the years zipping past like the ads on Sky+ fast forward on 30?

When my girls started making plans for a big 4 0 get together my brakes slammed on - I am only 21!!! Mentally... maybe even 17. How can I be sprinting towards middle age - hell I'm even enjoying 'Casualty' these days - I must be gettin' on. My life is a blurrrrr of scripts and rushing to drop off/pick up sproglet from militant nursery, food shops, cooking, bit of Grey's (tis back thank god) drinking red wine, Relate, dip in my best mate's hot tub and not getting enough sleep. I curse the Sunday papers for coming along again so quickly when last weeks are still piled by my bed with articles I am desperate to read. My lit agent wants me to fashion my Crummy Mummyness into some book form - have I a moment to do it? And in the midst of all this why have I developed a chronic Ebay addiction? I have little enough time as it is! I seem to be forever 'booking in' mates weekends down the line - which I hate as it makes life devoid of all spontaneity.

Last week I made it to the movies - woo hoo!! There was precious little on and my cousin and his lovely girlfriend were off to see some comedy from the 'Knocked up' fraternity - I plumped for 'The Women.' Meg Ryan, the wonderful Annette Benning, how bad could it be? I'll tell ya. Worse.

When I got bored of trying to work out how much botox Meg had pumped into her impish features I walked out and marched up to the all important ticket stub holders. "I am a mother who doesn't get out enough - especially to the cinema - so I cannot lose two precious hours of my life to this trash. What time does 'The Strangers' start"? Slasher horror is a weird fav of mine. It was pretty good actually - until the gruesome end when I dashed out - gratuitous stabbing not really my cup of tea. Point is - if it 'aint floating my boat - I gotta move on pronto. Life is too short baby.

Now where is my pumpkin carving kit?

Sunday, 7 September 2008

The World Cafe

I woke up this morning craving The World Cafe. A long deceased corner restaurant in West Hampstead that became our lounge (as I lived in our official one) from '99 - 2001. It had a long menu and a short clientele, thus it shut up shop shortly after we all moved house - I think my flatmates and I had kept it afloat. The staff were a mixture of fiery Italian chefs and Australian travellers. One boy - aptly named Angel - flirted with us all and fluttered his unfairly long lashes to the point that Nikki swore she was in with a chance, despite the fact he clearly preferred the hairier sex.

We would roll in every evening after work and stop for a glass that always became a bottle... or two. The staff would take a break and forget to go back to work. The bored chefs would send us over snacks - ideas they had for a menu that resolutely stayed the same. But Sundays, Sundays were our favourite days to stake our claim as territorial owners of the place - when I would stumble in, still in my PJs with a stack of Sunday papers and a tin of baked beans. The papers were to peruse over a leisurely breakfast - something to mop up the obligatory hangover. The beans because for some odd reason their cooked breakfasts omitted that all important ingredient; the sister restaurant had the same menu - the owner wouldn't add in the beans. So we bought them, brought them and the cook would nod and add them to our plates.

One Xmas we asked to hire the place for a big Xmas lunch - the staff agreed - closing it to the public, ordering in spirits that I'm pretty sure they didn't have a license for and asking us to come up with an Xmas menu. I seem to remember the event ended with dancing on tables and makeshift karaoke. We took it over for Claire and Est's b'day bash - once again banning uninvited guests and drinking wine that we somehow never paid for. The chefs would hang out at the back door, spilling into the alley from the intense heat of the stamp sized kitchen - offering a joint if we passed by and caught them on one of their eternal breaks. One night I went drinking there - already 3 sheets to the wind and in my jammies - I downed a glass of wine and then realised that it was actually the chef's wedding reception I had crashed...

It was never going to last. But while it did we ate like kings, were served by an Angel and didn't even have to get dressed to dine. I still miss those lazy Sundays...

Wednesday, 3 September 2008


Yes, I know it has been a while. I am sorry. This full time work malarkey sure is getting in the way of my blogging vents. For the first time I ever, I hesitate to write about something. Strange as I should hesitate more often when I speak - less of the old foot in mouth moments - but normally when I blog I just throw it all out there - lock stock and dirty barrel. Thing is, I know lots of folk who read my blog - and what I am about to write - I imagined them all reading and it made me feel a bit... well vulnerable or naked or something. But then I thought - I am crummymummy, I wrote this to be true and honest about life, love and motherhood - so if I can't be honest here - what is the point? Those that know me who read this tend to be lovely supportive warm fuzzy types - so what have I to fear?

Monday evening - Husband and I had our first Relate session. Yes, I am a tired cliche - but am determined not be a divorce statistic - so I made that call. It was after one particularly vicious rowing weekend - and a Monday that just didn't improve (bit like the summer weather). We had the initial 'meet and greet suss you out' kinda chat weeks and weeks ago - but this is where the ball starts rolling. Weekly chats for us to vent and bitch and get it all out there onto the table and somehow work through that resentment and anger that has festered and grown and sometimes squeezes the joy out of our extremely limited time together. I'll just say here that out of respect for Husband, I won't go in to the ins and outs of the machinations and recriminations that we fired at one another - but I will say how it made me feel.

Husband had been nervous all day - he kept asking of I was just going to bitch at him for an hour - at the end of which he would pay £40 for the pleasure? He could hardly look at me in the car on the way there - his nerves curtailing any humour he might have about the whole awkward situation. We were taken to a room that had no windows but oddly had a sunny yellow curtain that covered an entire wall and an air conditioning unit that filled half the space but apparently was too loud to put on. This room became a furnace. We boiled our way through the chat regardless of rage. Our counsellor type woman was lovely. Cheery, ruddy, good humoured - not dissimilar to the Farmer's wife in Babe (thought not as curvey)- she immediately clocked Husband's reticence. Behind that wholesome kindness though, lay a smart cookie who knew when to pipe up and when to let us rant. She was horribly fair and completely neutral - and appeared to be immune to the creeping temperature. I didn't want the session to end. I got the sense that she felt she'd be seeing a fair bit of us for a while yet optimism shone from her every pore. I bet she is the kind of person that all her friends tell secrets to.

Softly softly she hooked us in and then before I even saw it - boom! She had opened up Husband to the point I couldn't get a word in edge ways. Was it weird? Well having been in a small room listening to peoples' woes as a Samaritan, it didn't seem odd. I forget that Husband is a man - and Auzzie one at that, and isn't so in tune with the spilling gene us women have. The hour flew by as we danced in the merry circles things have become. I almost felt sorry for our Zen Lady. She feels like a safe pair of hands. I wonder how long this will take? Will it work? I'm pretty sure that both Husband and I don't want to jack our relationship in, nor do we want to damage it in any irreparable way - so this is.... a way to work through the fog. To come out the other side stronger and surer and happier. We have hope. We have time. This marriage game is for life as we see it. Husband is changing his ridiculous work hours in the next two weeks - which is the biggest breakthrough yet. As cheery lady said at the moment we 'have no time.' Robbed of time how can any relationship be well watered and continue to grow?

I'm thinking of this Lady as our Baby Bio. I'll keep you posted on how well we flower. The roots are pretty strong though...