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!).

24 February 2018

Parenting with a Hangover...(Or: Accepting Defeat)...

It is so much harder parenting with a hangover.
Soooooooo much.
Especially when Team Parent (yay!) are dividing and conquering, and I am left to do stuff on my own. It was all my own fault obviously.
No one made me drink all that red wine...

Mrs. Amazing: 'Right! If you don't down all that glass right now, I'm gonna let BabyBoy3 play with all your Star Wars figures... UNSUPERVISED!'
You wouldn't? <Is scared>
Mrs. Amazing: 'I would... When you're at work'
EKKK! <Man wolf cry>
OK,OK. I'll drink it. <Downs glass>
... <Urps>...More please...

(One bottle or two?
Mrs. Amazing: ‘One is probably enough…
but let’s take another for luck!’
Good plan <Packs three>)

Team Parent (yay!) had managed to go out.
Amazing I know. Together. On a Friday night!!!
Wine, curry and board games at friends house. And what was particular good was that they live nearby so we could walk there.
However as it can take two smegging hours to put the three terrors to bed. We wanted to maximise our 'out' time. So we drove. Planning to leave the car there, and walk and get it in the morning. Brilliant!
I love when a plan comes together.
<Rolls huge cigar around in mouth and grins>
<Coughs on the nasty smoke>

Granny Amazing had agreed to babysit.
So Team Parent (yay!) had thrown as many children into bed as possible before she got there about 7:30.
BabyBoy3 was a good little boy and was fast asleep. Knackered out from the day. We had had haddy had fun reading a story and I sang him his bedtime song as normal. I went with swing-style this time. Out like a light. Bless him.
Miss7 had got out of bed again for the billionth time with some tiny problem or concern, much to Team Parent's (yay!) frowny faces.
And then once Granny Amazing arrived, Miss7 left her bed once to say hi. Sigh.
Boy10 however doesn't go to bed until 8, which is when we were due.
And although we had managed to convince him to shower and get some jammies on. Boy10 wasn't showing much signs of being ready for bed.
So he was allowed to put on a Harry Potter movie which he promptly slumped in front of, and vegged.
Phew. Good luck Granny.

Obviously we were late.
That's what we do <Grumbles>. But who cares. Team Parent (yay!) were out, there were board games to be played, curry to eat and laughs and grown up speaking with swears to be done.
We had a bloody lovely time.

I may have had to much wine.
Definitely did. June. May. As when Team Parent (yay!) stumbled home to release Granny Amazing at the staggeringly late 11pm. I suddenly realised that laying down in bed going to sleep wasn't really to work well in my stomach.
So I stayed up later, and consumed as much water as possible.
Mrs. Amazing wisely went straight to sleep.
I finally crashed and awoke late the next morning...

Where am I? <Staggers>
What planet is this? What time of mannnnn is this? <Dons asking the heavens pose>
Mrs. Amazing: 'I've made you a tea'
Ta chuck
Mrs. Amazing: 'Now get up, I wanna take Boy10 and Miss7 out for a jog before 10:30, which is when I'm going to go get my Grandma for lunch at ours'
Huh? Right... Was I drunk when I agreed to having your Grandma over?
Mrs. Amazing: 'Nope. Sober. And it was your idea!'
REALLY? <Is shocked> That was nice of me... Surprisingly nice of me... Were you naked?
Mrs. Amazing: 'Nope'
WOW... <Is really quite shocked, but hides it badly>...
In that case I totally recall all that stuff you just said there... <points>... with your lips thingy... mouth...
Mrs. Amazing: <Is suspicious> 'It's 8:30 get up'
Have I got time to take BabyBoy3 swimming?
Mrs. Amazing: 'Yes, if leave soon'

And despite my head.
Acting like it was a drum being flattened by elephants. Taking BabyBoy3 swimming was going to be totally worth any pain.
Whilst handovers do hurt I find that if I just get on with stuff it's better. Sure I make more mistakes those days. I may not be the most tolerant. Weirdly I am better at just sitting and playing, as I think I just like resting those days. And with a head full of pain playing with kids is probably all I can manage.
So I did get out of bed and fell straight back down.

Me and BabyBoy3 needed to leave soon.
If we wanted to make the most of being in the pool. BabyBoy3 would only cope for an hour in the pool before he got cold. And I wanted to max that.
I just needed to slap myself in the face a bit, blowtorch my teeth clean, throw some clothes on, pack a bag with our swimming stuff, and down two maybe three cups of tea.
And get BabyBoy3 dressed!

(Dudes!!! Back up… I wanna clean my teeth…
Now where’s my lighter?...

It wasn't easy.
I couldn't concentrate and my normal skills at managing to distract BabyBoy3 whilst dressing him were failing me badly. So that every time I sat down next to him to get him dressed.
He would simply run off.
And I was too slow to catch him.
You maybe wondering where Mrs. Amazing was, a fella Team Parent (yay!) member. Why was she not helping?
Well Mrs. Amazing was already doing what I was doing.
But for Boy10 and Miss7. So twice what I had.
It felt wrong to ask for help.

What didn't help me was Boy10.
And Miss7. Both who were ready to go for their run, and quite excited about it.
So they bugged me instead. Everytime I managed to corner BabyBoy3 with the right clothes in my hands. One of them would appear, talk to him, and then they would run off to do something.
Time after time. Until with BabyBoy3 only half dressed.
I gave up. And went and packed our bag.
Swimming kit for me. Swimming kit for BabyBoy3. Two towels.
Post swimming chocolate for BabyBoy3 and water.
And flippin' armbands as BabyBoy3 has been talking to Miss7 who told him he needed them. Which was annoying as my plan was just to have him in my arms and get him used to being loose in the water.
Then he'd learn to swim quickly my way...

Right I'm going to let go... ready
BabyBoy3: 'YES!'
BabyBoy3: <Dives in from my shoulder>
<Watches through the water>
Dude... dude... your not using... anything...
<Scoops him out> OK?
BabyBoy3: <DEEP breath>'YEP!'
Let's try that again...

It just got worse and worse.
The more flustered I got at the time. The more I was stumbling running about the house not getting stuff done.
At times I found BabyBoy3 with socks on, other times he would throw them at me.
I pointed out that if he wanted to go swimming he should help me.
He cared not.
And just ran off shouting ‘SWIM-MING!SWIM-MING!SWIM-MING!’ punching the air.
(Love that loonie).

Eventually Mrs. Amazing took pity on me.
As my cool was definitely leaving me. I still hadn’t got cross and stompy. But I was definitely starting to crack at the seems.
Time was getting short and I was basically flapping about the place. Like a big fat hung over awesome chicken.
Mrs. Amazing grabbed BabyBoy3 and got him ready, with little fuss.
Which gave me time to have a paracetamol, some tummy pills, and gather my thoughts.
Which I needed.

With only myself to concentrate on.
I was ready quickly. And with Mrs. Amazing concentrating on BabyBoy3, not hungover me, he was ready pretty quickly too.
I grabbed the car keys, opened the front door. And without looking pointed the keys at the car pressing the unlock button. As I was rushing and simultaneously calling for BabyBoy3 at the same time.
BabyBoy3 came and with swimming bag in hand I turned and stepped out of the door.
Only to release something was missing.

I had expected to hear the beep beep of the car unlocking.
But there was nnoise. There was no flashing lights either.
There’s normally lights.
In fact there was nothing.
Not even the car.

Where’s the FU … BAR… <Resists>... car?
<Internal screams of frustrations and anger>

I took me a few moments.
Stood there. Keys in hand. But no car to match them. (Have you been paying attention> Have you worked it out yet?).
I was just about to go back in the house and ask Mrs. Amazing if she knew where the car was. Which may sound funny, but it happens more than you might think (if you might think twice).
We left the car at our friends house last night.

<Lots of really bad swears>
<Loses cool, head starts emitting high pitched buzzing sound>
<Looks down at BabyBoy3 stood next to me>
Change of plan… Get your scooter… We’ve a walk first…
BabyBoy3: ‘Yay!’

I checked the time.
The walk was a pretty long one. There was a slight chance that we could rush round. Rush back. Maybe get in the pool for a bit. Baring in mind rushing BabyBoy3 rarely works.
And despite my head hurting, and how everything had been going.
I made a good decision.

I accepted defeat.
The universe for some reason had decided that me and BabyBoy3 were not to swim that morning. And who was I too argue?
If I tried there was a chance we could make it. But everything would be rushed.
If I didn’t try, and made the most of what we were doing. We could have a really fun time scooting off to get the car.
And we could always go swimming this afternoon.
Which we did. Both counts.

(BabyBoy3: ‘DADDY! LOOK! It makes a really loud
bang noise when I do this! Look!
Great mate! <Is rolling about in agony on the floor>)

It turned out the bag I packed that morning was missing BabyBoy3’s swimming stuff. Yay.
We found this out in changing rooms at the swimming pool.
I think I actually cried real tears at that point.
Luckily the swimming pool sold size BabyBoy3 shorts, at £15 (!!), which for hygiene reasons could not be refunded unless the world was ending…

Does it really say that?
SwimmingShortsSeller: <Points>
… Fancy that… in bold too…

The shorts fitted fine.
But BabyBoy3 needs a top when he goes swimming. Or he gets cold too quick.
They didn’t sell tops (which I was kind of happy about) nor did we have one.
So very quickly and in a ceremony attended by me and officiated by me. BabyBoy3’s t-shirt was promoted to ‘swimming t-shirt’ and was suddenly fine to go in the water. YAY!
We finally got in the pool.
And spent the next hour having the best fun we’ve had together in ages.
#WorthIt (#ButNotTheBuyingNewShortsBit #ThatWasAnnoying #HeAlreadyHasSixPairs #NoNotFromMeForgettingEverytimeThankYou #HandMeDowns).

16 February 2018

Is Your Sun Up? (Gro-Clock)...

We've let it slip again.
Which is annoying as Team Parent (yay!) worked really hard on this last time.
It took a lot getting up really early, but we persevered and got the rewards.
BabyBoy3 was managing to sleep until it was wake up time.
Except we've now let it slip.

I love my children.
They are fab. I just wish they would sleep when they are meant to. That would be really good. Then Team Parent (yay!) would get more sleep. And life would be better for all. It's a win win.
It's just hard to make them see that way...

[ARHG O'clock in the morning]
BabyBoy3 go back to bed
BabyBoy3: 'No!'
<Stern voice> It's very early in the morning go back to bed
BabyBoy3: 'No!' <Gets back into bed anyway>
BabyBoy3: <Lies the wrong way up in bed, kicks off all the sheets>
Close enough... Night...

(BabyBoy3: <From his room> ‘YAY MORNING!’
TeamParent: <In bed, hiding> ‘BOO MORNING!’)

We have one of those clocks.
A time machine. A Gro-Clock. We had one for Boy10 and Miss7, and now BabyBoy3 has one.
All of them rebelled against it. Fight the power!
The idea is simple. You set the time you want the 'Sun' on the screen to come up. And when that time comes up, the screen changes from a blue sleepy night time picture, to a happy sun picture. There's even an adult lock on it.
So no little hands can alter it.

Boy10 altered it.
He hacked it (as he would say). He jabbed buttons until the sun came up. So we never bothered with the adult mode again. I say Boy10, but he was Boy3 back then.
There was a little while where the clock worked and Boy3 stayed asleep. But I am pretty sure that wasn't for very long and eventually we gave up with the Gro-Clock with Boy3.
There was a few times when we found it unplugged and Boy3 stood there telling us it went off all on it's own, but he did see the sun come up honest guv', just before it went off.
Other times Boy3 would come running in and announce that the sun had come up, only for us to check our clocks and find out the horrible truth.
But on the whole the clock worked well enough that we used it again.
For Miss7 - Who was at that time Miss3.

Miss3 reacted differently to the Gro-Clock.
Most of the time she got it. Most of the time. We still had the same discussions about whether or not the sun had come up with her. She would sit and watch the stars go out until morning. One an hour. <Gives you a look>
The main difference between Miss3 and Boy3's approach to the Gro-Clock. Was anger.
Miss3 broke it...

What on earth was that noise? <Goes to see Miss3
Miss3: <Sat in corner looking furious>
What's this cable?
Miss3: <Huffing sounds>
This is the Gro-Clock cable, where's the...  clock? <Fears the worst>
Miss3: <Points into the hallway>
Oh no... <Checks for pulse> <Attaches power cable>
... I'm afraid it's gone...
Miss3: <Whispers> 'Good'

(Mrs. Amazing: ‘What’s that?’
The Bat-Clock…
Mrs. Amazing: ‘Oh….’
Mrs. Amazing: ‘...I thought it would have been bigger.’
<Lots of giggling>)

I probably could have fixed the clock.
I'm a believer. And a fan of taking stuff apart and jabbing it with a screwdriver until it works or not. But considering Miss3 had broken one Gro-Clock Team Parent (yay!) were not about to throw more money at Miss3. For her to literally throw about.
We're not silly all the time.

So BabyBoy3 does not have the family Gro-Clock.
Passed down through the generations. Both of them. That clock died. From clocktracide.
BabyBoy3 got a brand new one. Which I suppose goes to show just how much we thought the Gro-Clock did work. Despite all I am saying, it still did a lot of good stuff.
It's main bonus was being able to discuss the time with tiny people very early in the morning in a very black and white way...

Is your sun up?
BabyBoy3: 'Er....'
Simple question, yes or no?
BabyBoy3: 'Um....'
That's a no then. Back to bed!

Now try that without the Gro-Clock and it's polarising powers on whether or not it is time to get up...

Do you know what the time is?
BabyBoy3: 'No'
It's far too early, look...
BabyBoy3: 'I literally have no idea what I am looking at, I can't even read my name yet. What the hell are those little lines? …'
It says it's far too early, go back to bed...
BabyBoy3: 'Are you sure you're reading it right? It's not'
Yes I am and it is
BabyBoy3: <Points at the window>
Yes I know the real sun is up and beaming in the window... But it's very early morning and we need you to go back to sleep
BabyBoy3: <Opens curtain> 'Oh father, but look it's a glorious day already! UP! UP! Come and share this day with me! ...'
Go back to bed... Zzz
<Fake sleeps and hopes BabyBoy3 goes round to see Mrs. Amazing>

See! Quite a difference.
The Gro-Clock provides a very simple way to not get involved in basically what is a conceptual relative time conversation first thing in the morning before you've even had your first cuppa.
There's some merit in things.

Still results may vary and all that.
As the two bugs have shown. And of course BabyBoy3 has his own interpretation of the Gro-Clock and its effect on him. BabyBoy3's take on it is that he ignores it.
He knows the rules. Don't come and see us until your sun comes up. So he doesn't.
But he does get up. Starts playing with his toys. Noisily. Shouting at stuff as only three year olds do. We hear the toilet door opening and closing a million times. A light from his bedroom going on and off. He’s no ninja yet. And BabyBoy3 is up and his day has started.
Far too early.

And because he does know the rules.
But only wants to do his interpretation of them. BabyBoy3 waits until the sun on his clock does come up. Which is still far too early in my book, but it's the time we set.
BabyBoy3 waits for the sun and then comes running into us.
Miss7 in tow. Utterly silent...

BabyBoy3: 'MY SUN'S UP!!! YAYYYY!!!'
Miss7: ‘Mummymyclocksaysit’stimetogetup.Whyarn’tyougettingup?’
<Is hiding under covers><Where it's warm>

What choice do we have?
None. Team Parent (yay!) are bound by our own rules. We have to get up and start the day. We can't tell the kids to stay in bed until X-o’clock and then change it. Why would BabyBoy3 every care about his sun if we don't follow it ourselves.

So back to us letting it slip.
We have allowed BabyBoy3 just to get up when he feels. Mainly so we can sleep.
But that’s backfired as BabyBoy3 isn’t getting enough sleep now. And is whiny all day.
Which is exhausting, better we have less sleep than him.
So now we've got to train BabyBoy3 to stay in bed and sleep again. Until his sun is up.
Team Parent (yay!) know what we have to do. It's pretty simple. We just don't want to do it.
We will though.

We were on it this morning.
Which is why if you see either of us, we looked extra tired. Not tired. Extra tired.
A whole hour before sun up time. BabyBoy3 was up.
And Team Parent (yay!) being the good team we are tried to out pretend each other being asleep, we shared the early morning pain.
Of putting a very sweetly apologetic BabyBoy3 back to bed, and then tucking him in.
Kissing him good night. Again. Turning off his light and pointing at the Gro-Clock.
And telling him to stay in bed until your sun comes up.

Should only take a week or so to change his habits.
And considering how many years I've got by on this sleep.
I doubt the decrease in sleep will have any affect on me at all...

[Piers Morgan is talking on the radio]
<Listens, doesn't smash the radio to bits and burn the tainted circuits, just listens>
Hmmmmm... You know this Morgan twat fella is actually an utter twat quite interesting and worse than everything soulless and evil in the universe insightful...
Mrs. Amazing: <Dials 999>

(HEY! Does my butt really look that big? Hell yeah!
<Swaggers off>)

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