Hi! <Waves>

Funny and honest tales from a made-to-work Dad of three, wobbling, graying, and laughing his way through parenthood. Armed to the teeth with Nerf guns, full of pie, fighting a chocolate addiction, but genuinely honoured to be at least half of Team Parents (yay!).

31 July 2016

The Great Shampoo Mystery...

I find myself rinsing shampoo out of my jeans.
There’s shampoo all over the bottom of one leg.
And there's a reasonable splodge on the other leg too. I'm also rinsing a foot too.
As there was a puddle of shampoo next to my jeans...

Mrs. Amazing walks past me.
Whilst I am rinsing. And points out that rinsing is unlikely to get shampoo out. They need washing.
I've already been doing this for five minutes.
I stubbornly carry on rinsing as I need clean jeans for work tomorrow.
And I haven’t got round to washing my other pair. Trouser wise it’s quite the disaster for me.
I need one reasonably clean pair for work.
Ideally not covered in shampoo.
Ideally not so stinky they can walk on their own.
And, conversely, not smelling of tropical mango shampoo either. I've a rep to protect.
So I rinse.

(It’s like looking in a very distorted and basically lying mirror,
which has a picture of Sherlock stuck on it,
and is a not representation of me in anyway...)

I had just declared I was exhausted and was heading to bed.
When I found my shampoo soaked jeans.
Obv. I donned my deerstalker hat and get all Sherlock on the crime scene.
Words and thoughts flashed across my mind. Cryptic messages unwound themselves in a light display across my eyelids. My telescopic eyeballs clicked into gear and nano-inspected every last shred of evidence. After much time and brain pain thinking.
I deduce three two key things.

1. The shampoo bottle is missing. I looked for it fourteen times, which equals Mrs. Amazing looking once. It should be next to all the spilt shampoo.
2. The shampoo is children’s shampoo. (Because it smells like sweets, although it doesn’t taste of sweets all. Very disappointing).
3. I would give pretty much anything (not comics) to be as cool Sherlock.

I'm feeling very cool and sexy.
For getting my Sherlock on. When reality ruins everything by reminding me it’s 11pm, I’m very tired, stood in low light, in boxer shorts, one foot submerged in shampoo, sniffing the leg of my jeans. Curtain not drawn. Being looked at, by people in the street.
I'll suggest this particular Sherlock scene to SirMr. Moffat next time I see him.....

So that's my idea? What ya think Steven?
Moffat: 'ARGH! You again?' <Is scared>
Moffat: 'How do you keep getting in? Past the guards, and dogs?'
Moffat: 'And into my bedroom? While I'm sleeping?'
Moffat: 'Huh? What?'
<Grins> Dedication! ... oh and these help...
<Show half empty bag of sausages and beer cans>
Moffat: 'You need to leave NOW' <Is all serious>
Okay... <Hangs head and mopes out, shuffling feet>
<Opens a beer>

So the questions are.
Why do I constantly keep stalking and ambushing people, in the most weird and frightening ways? What the smeging hell happened here?
How did my jeans get covered in shampoo.
Where is the bottle? Why isn’t it here?
Is it still leaking somewhere else?
I bet it is.

But to make this even more confusing.
Add fuel to the fire as it were. Stoke the engines. Beat the Wookie at chess. Stomp about in the sand making vibrations. Say his name out loud...
Let me take you back.... Back to before bedtime...
Back to when the children ruled the house... Back…
[It goes a bit wobbly]

(We won’t need roads where we are going… This thing doesn’t really move…
Which is totally fine for time travel...)

I got home from work.
Did the rounds of kissellos. Gave Mrs. Amazing her daily summer holidays 'I survived and didn't kill any of them' sticker. And took stock of how everyone was doing...

Miss5: Naked. Not unusual. But happy and tired out
BabyBoy2: Dancing around in circles demanding (nicely) Octonauts. And very, very happy I am home. Knackered.
Boy9: Watching tele and utterly motionless. He may actually be hibernating. Tired. Grumpy.
Mrs. Amazing: Well ...

... Well Mrs. Amazing needs a break.
She has been questioned; about anything, everything, been pulled; hugged, licked, prodded, screamed at, played with, argued for and against, has had to listen to many mad, or never ending, stories all day; whilst making sure the wild ones eat and are generally happy and having fun.
Poor Mrs. Amazing is done in. So she heads off for some phone time a quick lie down in the dark, in the quiet, without any children, with a phone, and hopefully some wine.
Bathtime, therefore, is handed to me.
<Is proud>

Boy9 is easy to get cleaned.
He can shower himself. <Points at hose> No worries there.
The only difficult bit with Boy9 is breaking his connection with the tele. It's like hypnosis for him when he's knackered. He also feels it's his universal-given right to be able to watch cartoons before bed. It's not.

Boy9 go shower will ya?
Boy9: <No response or motion at all>
Boy9: <Even less motion, and utterly no acknowledgement going on>
[Click of tele powering down]
Boy9: 'HEY! WHY?' <Lots of angry motion. LOTS>
<Hugs him> Go shower
Boy9: 'NO. Put the tele back on'
No. You smell. Please, for us all, go shower Captain Stinky Shower first. Then tele
[One millasecond passes]
Boy9: <Boy9 has disappeared>
<Sounds of shower running are heard>

Which leaves me Cheech and Chong Miss5 and BabyBoy2 to bath.
I tell them. And BabyBoy2 stands in front of me and says ribbit until I agree to bounce him up the stairs like a giant frog. After bouncing him up BabyBoy2 is giggling away and saying ribbit in his lovely baby voice. I can see spots before my eyes and may fall back down the stairs.
I release the lovely loon and go back for the reluctant Miss5.

Come on! Bathtime!
Miss5: 'Not coming'
I'll rocket you up
Miss5: <Contemplates> '... Ribbit'
Really? Are you both trying to kill me … OK. Fine…
<Does stretches and limbers up>
<Ribbits Miss5 who is three times bigger than BabyBoy2 up the stairs>
<Collapses to knees at the top>
Miss5: <Runs off happy>
<Gasps for a while>

I'm pretty stinky from my day.
So I dive into the bath with them. I just about fit cross legged. Leaving Miss5 and BabyBoy2 enough space to play.
We have the standard 'who has a penis?' conversation from Miss5.
(Me and BabyBoy2 do. Miss5 does not).
I explain why pointing and laughing isn't always appropriate.
I’m clean so I hop out of the bath. It's easier to clean them from outside of the bath.
Being able to move quickly always helps

I can't be bothered to get dressed properly so I throw my Star Wars flobby trousers on, and leave MY JEANS in the bedroom. Which is where I will find them later.

Both children are cleaned.
Then the logistically tricky part starts. Getting them both out of the bath. Dry. And jammies put on. Without anyone getting to cold. Or mucky again.
BabyBoy2 first so Miss5 gets a few on her own to play.
We have to bring a few Octonauts (toys replicas) with us. But BabyBoy2 is pretty cool about it. He's dried and giggled. And I leave him watching CBeeBies (100% safe) whilst I rush to get him a nappy.

(Hey! Has anyone one seen my very grown up, very scary, thought provoking book?
<Mrs. Amazing passes my Spidey comic>
… er… this’ll do until I find my book…

I have to rush.
Because BabyBoy2 is prone to weeing on the bed in these moments. Which is a right pain. Washing double sheets is a right faff. And lying to Mrs. Amazing about why a bit of the bed is wet never sits well...

Mrs. Amazing: 'Why's this bit wet?'
<Looks suspicious>
Mrs. Amazing: 'No... you didn't... Ewwww!'
Mrs. Amazing: 'That's disgusting!!!'
No it's not.
Mrs. Amazing: 'It is... Ewww ewwww!;
I don't get you sometimes. I admit it was a mistake getting any on the bed
Mrs. Amazing: 'Ew'
But I fail to see what is so disgusting about me practicing my impression of Rhod Gilbert yodeling under water <Is serious>
Mrs. Amazing: 'You expect me to believe that?’
<Gets water, takes a swig> Yode-glug-lay-glug-heehoo-BOY-O!
Mrs. Amazing: <Is speechless>
<Marks moment in diary for historical reasons>
Mrs. Amazing: '... I'm sorry for doubting you… It's… It’s a good impression too'
Thank you <Leaves with dignity>

A nappy is shoved onto BabyBoy2.
He doesn't seem to have moved. Miss5 has her hair washed with tropical mango shampoo and popped out of the bath. She is dried and giggled. Then I sit and comb out the billions of knots she has put in her hair throughout the day...

Is this Golden Syrup? <Has found a splodge>
Miss5: 'Yep' <Is watching CBeebies>
Is this Porridge? <Has found a bowls worth>
Miss5: 'Yep'
Is this glitter? <It’s like the floor of new year’s eve pub>
Miss5: 'What colour?'
Red, blue and green
Miss5: 'Nope... Wait. Did you say red?'
Miss5: 'Then yes'
<Looks at Miss5 and wonders…>

Those two warm and dry.
I go to tidy the bathroom. Where I find Mrs. Amazing.
We quickly catch up and Team Parent (yay!) quickly discuss plans for bedtime, tomorrow, and all pressing things we to sort out.
Then I step in shampoo for the first time.
Yep. It's gonna happen later too. My lucky day. But now, in the bathroom with the candlestick I step in a small puddle of shampoo. I find the shampoo bottle. Do the lid up and put it away.
I probably knocked it off. And it was probably me in a rush that didn't shut the lid properly.
It’s a parent to child for bed.
So there's no chance for anyone to grab a shampoo bottle at this time.
They go to bed. Eventually.

[It gets a bit wobbly again, there’s some smoke, it’s very 70s sci-fi]
Welcome back to now, now.

That's all the facts.
So. When the smeg did one of them, grab the shampoo, run into my bedroom. Pour it on my jeans, the floor. Then pick the bottle back up and luze it back onto the bathroom floor. Open. For it leak again, for me to step in earlier. (I do hope you’ve been paying attention and are not confused).

(The dancing potato in a pool of water is symbollocks...)

I don’t think it was Boy9.
As shampoo is kind of his holy water at the moment. And he hasn't touched any shampoo for a month or so. No matter what he says.

Miss5 was in the bath.
So had see done it. There would water everywhere.
I did grill ask her the next morning. See if she would fess up or anything.
Either Miss5 can either lie brilliantly and survive a full Daddy REALLY stare... Or it wasn't her. She’s normally pretty honest.

Which leaves BabyBoy2.
BabyBoy2 is a teeny tiny boy. And there’s no chance he could have done all that, in the time it took me to run down stairs and get a nappy.

So really… Who did it?
<Looks suspiciously at the Cat>
<Cat sleeps, he cares not>


20 July 2016

Nearly the End of Term (Thank Bacon and Cake)...

The awesomeness that is the 'End of Term' is nearly here.
Actually it cannot get here quick enough.
Six long weeks of summer holidays are seriously needed.

I'm pretty sure Boy9 is going to explode.
Bang. It's not going to take much. The wrong fork at breakfast. His favourite toy found millimetres in Miss5's room. Dad has eaten all the cake.
That boy is primed and ready to blow...

Mrs. Amazing: 'What are you doing?'
Shhhh <Continues to prod Boy9 with long stick>
Mrs. Amazing: 'WITHOUT ME?'
<Nods and loves her even more>
Mrs. Amazing: 'Come on, shove up! My go!'

(... I have never been bowled when using my lucky bat...)

As long as Boy9 is doing something he likes.
He's fine. But ask him to do anything? Ask him to help?
Ask him to push the switch that closes the very doors to hades, so their hoardes and demons won't come into the house and burn everything, and roast us in the eternal fires of oblivion. Ask him to do that?
It’s a long shot.

He's very much like a smeggern over wound toy car.
It kinda works…. But in spits and spots.
Sometimes it goes off like a rocket.
Other times it just makes this annoying noise and doesn't move at all.
But then sometimes you just need to nudge it... a teeny bit... and BROOOOOM off it goes and it scares the crap out of me you at night...
(I may have lost focus on this metaphor).

You know when you see a parent out with an annoying child.
A child being rude, abusive, mean, hitty, shouty, just urghhhhh!
And the seems to just be sitting there, calming talking, letting them behave like that.
And inwardly, you tut them.
Well you shouldn't. You should clap them.
Because any parent that is calm and still managing to reason with the child is doing it right.
I promise.
<Puts hand on R2-D2> Hope to be shot down by frugal laser turret gunners if I'm wrong...

I know.
Because it's what Team Parent (yay!) are currently trying to do with Boy9.
It's exhausting and annoying and we hate it.
But it works. When nothing else does.

School has utterly drained him this year.
Poor loon. Boy9 just needs to be left alone to do whatever he wants. For about a week.
Then he'll be back to himself in no time.

Miss5 however has been running on fumes for ages.
She has given her all to her first year at school.
And it's easy to say like that isn't it. Miss5's done one year at school.
There! Easy wasn't it?
One year. Doesn't seem much? One year.

(Quick blow it out! That candles gotta last everyone’s teens...)

But that's one year of classes with a teacher for the first time.
One year of needing to be on time, and dressed sanely correctly.
One year being with lemons and fools others around you. Who you may not like.
One year of having to act big, and be on your own all day.
One year of filling your brain with more information than you've ever know. Probably twice over.
One year of having to concentrate for hours and hours.

<Runs off after a butterfly>
Missed it... Where was I?

One year of having other adults telling you off.
One year of having of swines other children being mean to you, just coz.
One year of having unfair stuff happening and that's it. It just happens.
One year of a million brilliant and lovely experiences.
One year of having no one pick you up if you cry and hugging you to little bits.
And really someone (me) should always be there doing that.

Can you imagine how hard that change is to adjust too?
Yeah. It's just one year for Miss5... But crikey!
What a year!

Luckily for us.
Miss5 has taken to school like chocolate does to cake (well). But. For every brilliant bit at school… There's been the flip side at home...
The screaming.
The hitting.
The kicking.
The meals at the table where Miss5 isn't at the table at all. Unless you count screaming and kicking the cupboards the other side of the room as being at the table (we do not).
The fights, two damn hours after bedtime, about her wanting to wear a fleece to bed. In an English heat wave (A whopping 30! It was so hot I even questioned whether or not having cups of tea all day was such a good idea) (It was Obv.).
The naked little girl screaming she's too cold to put on pyjamas.
The confused Dad struggling with Miss5's reasoning and grip of thermal dynamics...

Then... But... Then you'll be.... ARHGGHGHG!!! <Brain pain>
WHAT DO YOU WANT??? TELL ME!!! Pleases <Sobs>

Excellent first year of school Miss5.
Now hurry up and finish it so you can rest.
You deserve it, and Team Parent (yay!) need it.

Mrs. Amazing needs the holidays to start too.
Not for herself you understand. But for the inmates children. They are all acting a bit nuts.
Which is driving Mrs. Amazing a bit nuts as well.
She needs a good break, on a beach, in a swimming pool of sparkling white wine, surrounded by rugby players playing volley ball, and piped in Radio 4.
I understand I would be allowed to visit during pre-agreed visiting hours.
The children would not.

I got a message from Mrs. Amazing. A movie and this text…

I feel her pain. There's a lot of thirty seconds in a day.

Well there's no school yet for him. But holidays mean no more getting bundled into a hot car forty times a day. No waiting about in playgrounds for grumpy siblings. No dashing about with Mummy on errands all day.
Summer holidays will mean BabyBoy2 gets Miss5 and Boy9 to play with all day. And he loves playing with them so much. He’s gonna love the next six weeks.
And the pace of BabyBoy2's life will slow right down.
Which is what he needs.

BabyBoy2: 'One more?' <Cocks head to the side>
BabyBoy2: 'PwEEEEEase!' <Gorgeous smile>
Oh OK! One more Octonauts then... But then we better get dressed before it gets dark...
<Both watch Octonauts and love it>

And me?
Well at this time of year I end up working late, and early to make up time so I can go to their sport days. Their open days. Their Hand-Over-Your-Money-We-Want-To-Build-Stuff-At-School days. Their Fifty-Pounds-A-Burger days? And Very-Cheap-Cake days (my fav).
My work days are longer at the moment. But that's fine. And my choice.
I know I am lucky to be able to attend their school things.
Once the holidays start I'll go back to normal hours.

I'm going to miss dropping Miss5 off at school.
A lot. I'm going to be missing that for the next six weeks.
Nothing starts my day off better than a Miss5 chat...
Miss5: ‘... and that's how bees fly!’
You sure?
Miss5: ‘Oh yes. Yep’
But where do they get this ‘rainbow petrol’ from?
Miss5: ‘By flying round all rainbow-colour flowers. Obv.
Oh… Makes sense… <Is Surprised>
Hang on… <Takes notes>

I’ve also got six weeks of listening to fun.
For the next six weeks I am going to have to hear about all fun the they are going to have.
All the plans the four of them will now make for the next six weeks. Without me.
All the places they will go, the fun they will have. Without me.
All the flobbing about, watching Star Wars, eating cake. Without me.
And I really love watching Star Wars and eating cake. I’m excellent at it.

Stupid male Dad life…
<Grumbles off to work>
<They have cake!>

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