Or You Could Just Hide In the Cupboard

Or You Could Just Hide In the Cupboard

Quote of the Day/Week/Month/Year or Until I Change It!

‘Strength does not come from physical capacity. It comes from an indomitable will.’

Mohandas Gandhi


Pondering the choices we make at our crossroads is like revision in the school of life.

Regretting the mistakes or taking for granted the successes, means we have learnt nought.

An attentive student will gain wisdom from the mistakes and joy from the successes.

Cartillyer – 2008

Thursday, April 28, 2011

My Age – According to Tomboy!

Tomboy was standing on the other side of the backyard when she held up a piece of blue string that she’d found in the garden. ‘What’s this, Mummy?’ she asked me.

I am short-sighted, and thus, need glasses to see things clearly when they are far away.

‘I can’t see it properly, bring it here,’ I replied.

‘Can’t you see it because you’re old?’  asked Tomboy.

‘No,’ I replied, ‘it’s because I don’t have my glasses on!’

A few days later, The Apprentice informed me that Tomboy asked her if I had a boyfriend when I was younger. (They'd been discussing boyfriends.) To ensure The Apprentice understood what she meant by ‘when Mummy was younger’, Tomboy added, ‘When there was dinosaurs!’

Monday, April 25, 2011

We Were Under Attack!

The week before before Mr T went into hospital to have his salivary gland removed, we were invaded by tummy bugs. These weren’t your usual tummy bugs that laid you out on the couch for 24 hours with your head in a bucket. They were smart bugs that moved with stealth. They camouflaged themselves well and threw random vomit bombs at the children, so each time a child had finished coating their bed in vomit, they felt well enough to run about and play again…until the next vomit bomb hit.

Boywonder fought well and only succumbed for half a day. Great for him; not so great for us. Our expectations for the girls’ recovery were completely misled by his quick recovery.

The next night Tomboy’s first vomit bomb hit at 11 pm.

Miss Flora woke at 5 am – where she was sleeping next to me in our bed – and vomited on the bed. Later that day she woke from her afternoon nap and climbed onto my lap for a cuddle. Without any warning, I – and my leather office chair – were hit with a decimating vomit bomb. With no one in the room to assist in the defence, I tried to calmly yell for help. Miss Flora was already distressed at this strange substance hurtling itself out of her body, and I knew that she’d misinterpret my call for help as panic if I yelled too loud or too fast. I didn’t want to scare Miss Flora and cause the shrapnel to fall on the carpet. She looked around as I called, so I placed my palm on the side of her face and gently turned her face towards me. ‘Keep looking at Mummy in case anymore comes out.’ I didn’t want her to vomit on the carpet, and since I was already coated in it…

I told her to vomit on me!

In between the vomit bombs they were up and playing like normal, so each time we thought it was safe to pack away the buckets, the attack would start again.

Later that day it was Tomboy’s turn again – on the carpet outside the bathroom – two feet from the tiled bathroom floor. 

A couple of hours after we got all three bedded down for the night, Tomboy was again under attack. We actually had Miss Flora sleeping in her cot (instead of our bed), but after another assault on Tomboy we couldn't sleep. Every time we heard Miss Flora make a noise or move, we thought she was going to vomit, so we'd leap out of bed with bowl in hand ready to catch it. Finally, at around 1 am, she made a wet noise with her mouth, so I leapt out of bed with the bowl, Mr T turned the lamp on and our panic woke her. She hadn't vomited, she was just lip-smacking in her sleep.

So then we had to take her into our bed. Mr T moved to the single mattress on the floor and was soon snoring. I spent the rest of the night lying in our bed next to Miss Flora, who has gone back to sleep on her blanket and towel (to protect our bed), listening to Mr T snore. Great! His charge has vomited, so there's a good chance he won't have to get up again through the night, but I'm lying here next to the other one waiting for the inevitable. Every time Miss Flora made a sound or moved I'd sit up in bed and reach for the bowl. I also had to stay close to her to ensure she stayed on the side of the bed that had the towel and blanket protecting it, so I was constantly in the firing line when she was facing me.

After all that, she didn't vomit again!

The tummy bug attack was over…or was it?

Unfortunately, two days after Mr T’s operation I succumbed to the tummy bug. A few hours later Mr T succumbed to it. Fortunately for me, I hadn’t had a major operation inside my mouth. Unfortunately for Mr T – he had.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Depressed Man Eats His Own Finger and it's Mr T's 40th Birthday!

Did you hear about the depressed man that ate his own finger? (Depressed Man Eats His Own Finger) 

I’d read the story a couple of days ago and had forgotten about it until Mr T’s 40th birthday arrived. I thought it was an interesting way to deal with depression and certainly guaranteed him the attention he needed, but what I really want to know is if anyone asked him what it tasted like and how he ate it. Did he slow-cook it, so the meat fell from the bone, or does he prefer his meat medium-rare?

Thankfully, Mr T isn’t about to start eating himself, but after an operation to remove a salivary gland followed by a bout of gastro, almost two weeks of inactivity, school holidays and now a 40 year milestone, he’s not feeling like the perkiest boob in the strip club.

I tried pointing out some positives: he’s married to a younger woman – he’s in his forties and I’m in my thirties; he may feel old, but a particular part of his anatomy has at least another 40 years left in it. In fact, when he woke and said he was surprised he hadn't passed away in his sleep, I pointed out to him that a part of him was awake and rearing to go a good 5–10 minutes before he was, and if he had passed away it would be waving about screaming, ‘Resuscitate him! I’m not done with this world yet!’

At least he isn’t insisting on buying a sports car, getting hair implants or swapping his wife for a younger model. The latter is certainly not an option; he can’t keep up with the one he has now (that may change when she reaches her forties in six months time).

So, how does Mr T cope with today’s depressing milestone?  He offers to shout everyone (who’s at home) McDonald’s for breakfast.

Some may see this as a typical act of depression – eating unhealthy food. At least it’s not his finger! But I see it as Mr T challenging himself. He’s challenging his cholesterol levels, challenging the kilos he lost over the last couple of weeks and he’s challenging his mouth to withstand the pain of chewing a bacon and egg mcmuffin. (I ordered hotcakes as well, just in case the last challenge was too difficult, but I forgot he had to eat excruciatingly slow and ate them for him.)

We all handle life’s events, good and bad, differently. Lucky for Mr T, he has me to hold him hostage, torture him with woeful jokes and force him to smile through gritted teeth.

Please note: Due to the momentous event of Mr T’s 40th birthday, a recount of the vomit battle has been postponed until next week.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

The Mummy Willeh Monster

Every now and then kindergarten children produce something a little more interesting than the standard odd-shaped circle containing three dots and a line to represent a face. After completing the picture with four longer lines pointing in random directions to represent the arms and legs, they incorporate their imagination into the drawings, but the results aren’t always what we expect.

Here’s a picture that Tomboy painted at kindergarten this week. I’m sure that, like me, you’re wondering what the short middle leg is and I have no doubt that, like me, you guessed right – it’s a willeh!
Just to be sure, I asked Tomboy and she confirmed it. She called the strange looking creature a willeh monster.

‘So it’s a boy monster,’ I said.

‘No, it’s a mummy monster,’ she replied.

‘But it has a willeh!’

‘Yes, it’s a mummy willeh monster,’ replied Tomboy matter of factly.

I reminded her, ‘I don’t have a willeh.’

‘I know, I was just pretending.’

So last week she told Mr T he had big boobs and this week she’s painting mummy as a monster with a willeh. (Mr T thought he had problems!)

There are many theories that can be tossed about on this one. Maybe she sees me as a monster when I’m angry (and rightly so), but that doesn’t explain the willeh.

She’s always been a bit put out that Mr T and Boywonder have willehs and we don’t. (It doesn’t help that Boywonder says they’re awesome because they have willehs.) Maybe she thinks she’s doing me a favour by giving me a willeh.

My favourite theory is that Mummy wears the pants!

So, Mummy looks like a monster when she’s angry, but she’s an awesome monster because she has a willeh.

Yep, that definitely says that I wear the pants…especially when I’m angry!

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Who has big boobies?

From the moment we have children we’re reminded of how old we are. Despite the tubby belly that sticks out above the top of the nappy and the baby fat that cushions their limbs, we see perfection. From the velvety hair on their heads, to the silken skin that covers their bodies, they’re everything we’re not.

It’s not cute when Mr T’s belly sticks out above the top of his pants and the small amount of fat I used to love sitting high on my chest has started heading south. Some of it may have even migrated to my thighs. Why it would want to move from the chest to the thigh is beyond me, but that was the last place I saw it. That's still gotta be better than remaining attached to my chest, but sitting on my belly…hasn't it?

Even if we manage to keep the bulges in check and where they should be, we can’t escape the ravages of time and circumstance as the wrinkles move in, and, as in Mr T’s case, the hair moves out. We all experience the signs of aging. Some of us openly work hard to fight it, throwing diet, exercise and cosmetic surgery at it, others ignore it in the hope it will slow down faster than what we do, and the rest of us alternate between ignorance and short spurts of dieting and exercise.

Regardless of whether we’re comfortable with it and how we deal with it, there is always an innocent child waiting in the wings to remind us of our true physical appearance. Mr T was helping Tomboy dress herself after her bath when he joked that she’d better cover up her big boobies.

‘I don’t have big boobies!’ she replied indignantly, as any four year old still sporting some leftover baby fat would.

‘Sorry, small boobies,’ replied Mr T. ‘Who has big boobies?’ he asked her.

‘Mummy – and you, Daddy.’

Being small busted I felt quite chuffed; Mr T didn’t, but I believe he’s about to enter into one of those short spurts of dieting and exercise.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Froggy recognition

While visiting her aunty in Queensland, Miss Flora enjoyed a close encounter with a large green tree frog. After spending a few minutes oohing and aahing over the frog, Miss Flora returned to the lounge room with Aunty.

No sooner had Miss Flora sat down when she spied Aunty’s coasters. They each contained a vivid photograph of a green tree frog, identical to the real frog Miss Flora and Aunty had been saying hello to.

Miss Flora picked up a coaster in each hand and raced to the back door, begging Aunty to open it. As soon as Aunty obliged, Miss Flora shot out the door to the frog. She very carefully laid the coasters on the ground in front of him and pointed at them, exclaiming, ‘look! look!’

Not yet two, Miss Flora not only connected the frog with the pictures on the coasters, but was desperate to share her discovery with him.

Maybe it was the frog’s lack of reaction or she felt he couldn’t quite see the coasters properly, but laying them in front of him wasn’t sharing enough. Miss Flora placed her hand behind the frog and tried to gently push him forward towards the coasters.

It’s small moments like this that remind me of how magical being a parent can be.