Summer is here!

Today has been hot, not just Britain hot but like Spain hot. This is a big deal to us, I realise that in a lot of places, our summer is like their winter, but when you live here and you get a truly hot day as today has been, it’s massive.

Maybe it was because we had one of the first school visits for my daughter and when we picked her up, conveniently there was an ice-cream van parked outside, (huge respect to the business sense of that man, there are over 400 children in the school and if just half had the persuasive powers of my kids he’d be quids in……oh alright, they were far too short to spot the van behind the other cars, it was all my idea!), so we walked home from school for the first time, first of many, all 3 of us eating Mr Whippys with flakes in, (me trying to pretend I hadn’t heard the stories about the bacteria in those machines), and went home and lay on blankets in the garden. The grass was dry and crunchy, the children were in the paddling pool, I was actually sunbathing on the lawn, which never happens in this country and it was so peaceful!

It was genuinely too hot to move and for ages we just all lay and watched the bees busily feasting on the flowering bramble and trying, and failing to spot just one cloud. It took me right back to days of lying on the freshly mown stubble of the farmer’s fields, clouds scudding lazily overhead and the buzzing of the bees filling the air. The air always felt like a warm blanket, heavy and still and the heat haze made everything look ethereal. I was always pretty sure that nostalgia had a good hand in painting these picture perfect memories but today I experienced a British summer day as I remember them from my childhood.

Although what I don’t remember from my own childhood is someone nagging me endlessly about my hat and suncream as I did to my children. I also remember a red nose and slightly sore burnt skin which I’m glad they won’t. Not saying my parents did a bad job but it was different when I was young…..at least we never had rickets I suppose!!

I spent much of my childhood outdoors, swinging upside down from tree branches, building dens, trying to make pictures out of clouds, which, by the way I still rule at 😉 , running wild and free, and whilst I realise that it’s a different time now, and that, even if we lived deep in the countryside as I did, I still would feel much more cautious about not knowing where they were, I feel happy knowing that I can still give them the sense of summer that I hold onto all these years later, the magic only a really hot day in Britain can bring with the amazing addition of sprinklers!!

Hopefully it won’t rain again now I’ve mentioned the weather! 😀
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Not one single cloud!

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Time – and the lack of it!

When I started writing this, I was sat at my desk with tinny hold music blaring from the phone handset next to me. Why does this always happen? I had finally got two sleeping children, Mr Bear had gone out to fly down a muddy hill on two wheels and I had cooked tea already, (v rare!). I landed in my grown up swivelly chair with a satisfying whoosh, raring to go aaaand there was no internet. It was traumatic, it was going to be the day I got this live, I was going to fix the glitches, I’d had good feedback from the few trusted friends who had had sneak previews and I was itching to get it out there, to see what other people thought but not a single iota/beam/spark, whatever goes on inside those magic cables, of internet. I so very rarely get the time to sit down uninterrupted and peaceful to get anything I want to do done that having this precious 2 hour window snatched away was awful!

So I spent a fair amount of time getting through to customer support to find out
our account had been closed. Ahhh, now that you mention it, some vague distant bell is going off, I seem to remember Mr B mentioning something but I must have been concentrating on something else, (not listening!), so was a bit fuzzy on the details. Luckily, the guy had a sense of humour and hopefully didn’t think I was a total idiot.

Turns out our new provider have switched us over to them already but just the phone and the net will follow in a week. A WEEK*!! This is horrendous! I can’t do anything without it.**

It got me thinking about all the things I can’t do;

  • Watch my programs on Netflix, last night we had to watch freeview, with adverts, and waits between episodes. Can you believe it?!
  • Order lots of stuff. Possibly stuff I don’t need. Probably stuff I don’t need. Ok, ok stuff I don’t really need.
  • Get my website online or post anymore blogs.
  • Google the things my kids ask me about.
  • Complain about stuff on twitter.

Actually, bar the website and blog stuff. Maybe a week without internet is no bad thing. A good thing in fact. Especially as I can’t spend all my time gawping at my phone either as I’ve had no signal since November, (it’s June!), but don’t get me started on that! 😀

Update: It has actually been 6 days and now we’re back online thankfully! We got wifi back after 4 days so it’s just been the computer. I’ve been ok, intense frustration that I couldn’t sort this out and also a somewhat scary realisation that I am totally reliant on the internet. I would have thought patterns like, ‘My dropbox is full, I could use this time to transfer it all to an external hard-drive and then I could put the website in it and use it on my laptop
.oh. I need the internet for that!’ and I realised that almost everything I do now is linked to the internet.

So I’ve decided I will do all these things to make life smoother now while we have the internet, well, you know, maybe tomorrow, or Tuesday, Tuesday is looking good, first I need to find that cable, which might be in the box in the loft, aren’t all my old clothes up there, hmm maybe I should have a sort through. I mean, what are the chances of the internet going off again this week?!

*Since the writing of this post, well, near the end but I already spent time writing it and there is so little of that around that I can’t won’t rewrite it, it turns out it will just be for two days. So, um, that is ok really. I was actually almost looking forward to it!

**This is possibly overdramatic, I was born and mostly raised in a time before technology enveloped us in its’ crazy all-consuming world, you know, back when you had to phone a landline to arrange to meet a friend at a certain time, if they were out, well, you had no idea where they were! The dial up tone of bong-gi-dongy-dongy-bong-krshhhhhrrhhrhhrss-bing-bing-bing, not being able to use the net and phone simultaneously, awkward small talk with friend’s parents about primary school life and only being able to buy stuff in actual shops with real money, going home and not hearing from anyone from school except the handful of friends with your landline number willing to brave a chat with your parents. Not having to look at pictures of your beloved class fitty snogging someone else at a party you didn’t go to, plastered all over Instagram, watching a program without live tweeting all your thoughts on what was happening and actually missing the important scene which explained all as you were too busy ‘swooning over @colinfirth in his white shirt’.

Ok, to be fair I think everyone lost their focus on the storyline at that scene regardless!

Gardening

Ok, just typing this makes me feel old! I don’t know why, probably because I have had a long love affair with garden centres, (the cards, the gifts, the pretty flowers, the cafĂ©s with their tea in china teapots and slabs of Victoria sponge!), and my lovely husband has always laughed at the fact that I would go there over the pub every time & that they often have specials on things like walking sticks or orthopaedic slippers, but I love the illusion that I too could have a beautiful garden filled with plants. (Oh, and the gifts, and mugs, and the cake, and the reeaally pretty gardening gloves, and look, a pot that looks like a ladybird

..)

Trouble is, it’s just that, an illusion. I totally get the concept.

a)Buy seeds
b)Put in pot with soil
c)Keep alive with water and light
d)When plants start emerging and get big, prick out, (completely immature but I am smirking right now)
e)Keep alive for longer with water etc
f)Eat what it produces/admire flowers

Simple no? Erm, no it would seem. Every year I have these grandiose ideas about how we will be eating our own fruit and veg, sat in our planned out garden with shrubs and flowering stuff and little paths leading to tiny rose covered pagodas and then we rarely get past a! Which we manage every year, there are packets of seeds everywhere in our house, hidden in drawers, stuffed under books to try and ease my guilt. Seeds have use by dates, did you know? No I didn’t either until I realised I’d totally murdered all these baby plants and felt horribly guilty, I got really told off by Mr Bear when he found my stash and realised I’d wasted all that money!

If, on the lucky occasion, these little seeds make it into the soil, receive the appropriate amounts of light and water, I will generally then forget about them. This year, we have made it to e) but, it sort of feels a bit like cheating. Because we skipped steps b to d, (not a obviously!), those seeds are currently still on the window sill in the kitchen because we haven’t quite reached the cut off for sowing yet! They will be joining ’12, ’13, & ’14 in all their hidey holes very soon!

The main reason we have made it to e this year is because I bought the tomato plants from the garden centre as proper established plants, I have done a bit, they have since been re-potted, (5 points), grown some green tomatoes, (5 points), and well, that’s it! They are not ripening, (-5), they are all curling up and when I tried to straighten them up a stick, a bit snapped off, (-10!), the strawberries I bought from a stall on holiday ready grown, re-potted them, (+5), kept them watered, (+5), but now they have little aphids on & the fruit is too low in the pot so getting soggy, (-20), and sunflowers, I so had every intention of getting the kids to decorate the pots, watching their excited little faces as they shot up, measuring the height against themselves, watching them rotate to face the sun but, I never quite got the packet open! Oops. Luckily their lovely grandparents brought them some round, (established plants thankfully!), but now I’m wondering if they are some pygmy variety, as they have lots of flowers on but in the time we’ve had them, have not grown even a half inch taller!

Maybe I need to accept that there are lots of things I am very good at, but gardening might not be one of them, probably time for a phone call to Granny Green Fingers and get her over for a week!

Also, I wrote this 5 days ago, and update, the tomatoes are still green!!!

Who really has it best?

This is something that is debated the world over, argued over in homes, discussed in playgroups, thought about wistfully in hot, stuffy offices, seethed over resentfully on fraught rainy days. I actually believe that there is no answer. It varies from day to day, mood to mood, job to job. If you compare a day working on a beach bar to taking two children with you for a much needed haircut, well, no contest, but equally pitting a perfect day of sunshine and ice-cream against a day of deadline angst in a highly pressured environment is a no brainer too.

I can only tell you about my day as I experienced it, on the surface, an idyllic summer day; hot sun, friends, a new place to explore. In reality though, it wasn’t really relaxing. There were the usual car wars on the way there, a gorgeous canal, (read: massive chance of death), we settled down for a picnic but with 5 children between us there was lots of wandering off, an accident of the soggy pants variety, a teeny baby needing cuddles, (seriously, that is definitely not a hardship where I’m concerned!), then a move to the water park, lots of faff getting everyone changed and trying to coat all their wiggly bodies in suncream, then the usual in, out, in, out (luckily no shaking it all about, small boy’s bits stayed in his shorts for once! ), of the entrance gate, back and forth for more food, to ask to go to the sandpit, to ask for towels, to go back in to the water park in the towels, more cold, more food, more changing, then ice-creams, and then the post ice-cream crazy time behaviour that almost resulted in loosing a couple to the murky depths of the canal.

A lovely play in the sandpit followed, with an amazing sand and water castle/tower with a pump at the top and loads of different channels and pipes to pour the water down, which was fab but again a constant of one child after the other getting stuck at the top, or the bottom, or somewhere in the middle! Dropped buckets, stolen spades, wishes to try things on the other side of the park all topped off with a complete melt down at leaving time and a fractious journey home with lots of tears and serious moans about the radio being on, or off, or too loud, too quiet, no trumpets in the song etc etc.

So in conclusion, I did have a cup of tea, (cold as per by the time I got to drink it), I did sit in the sun and chat to my friend but only in blocks of roughly 2 minutes and I am now exhausted but would I change it? I don’t think so, my children had a brilliant day, I got to watch them laugh and play and interact with their friends, I get to soak up almost every precious minute of the ever shorter time of their lives before I spend more time watching them disappear through those big school gates then actually with them in the week.

I know that that is what my husband misses most whilst working, just having the opportunity to watch these little beings we created taking wonder in a ladybird, a funny shaped leaf, a really big bird poo, (unfortunately anything bodily function related causes great fascination at the moment!), and I get to cuddle them and kiss grazed knees, feel their sticky little hand gripping mine with total trust in me as they clamber over the obstacle course.

Plus the biggest bonus of all is that he has missed them so much in the day, when we get home, he is fresh, not worn down and snappy like me, so he gladly relinquishes charge from me, he is thrilled to see them, and they him, he gives them a new energy and happily baths them and reads them a story without rattling through each page, not taking questions or observations as I would have.

Although he does get the worst of them, the overtired, end of day tears and tantrums, especially bad if they’ve had a busy fun filled day as we have today.

So who has it best? Today I’d say me but actually I think we will both be looking forward to that moment of still when we can both sit down and enjoy the peace and calm of each other’s company, the ability to finish a conversation with a hot cup of tea

providing I don’t doze off embarrassingly early that is!

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We went to Evesham park, it was amazing! Loads of parking in a meadow, ÂŁ1 per hour, a canal with house boats, barges, swans, ducks and geese, plenty of run around space, a large sandpit, lots of other slides and adventure swings and a water park area with fountains and showers they can operate by stamping on foot pads. There was a small catering van there when we went selling icecreams, teas and coffees, soft drinks and I think sandwiches and paninis. There is a toilet block at the far end near the water park and also some really really gorgeous water lillies that were all blooming. Best bit for small boy was getting to watch some teenagers who’d come to practise their pretty amazing back flips and twists on the sunken trampoline. They were very sweet and didn’t laugh when he attempted to copy them.

After-thought; I was under the impression that teenagers were all supposed to be glued to their phones indoors, these guys could all do amazing stunts which must have taken a lot of time to master. Are teens moving outdoors and breaking the stereotypes now?!

Mornings

There are few things that make me regress into a teenager, actually, no, there are lots of things that make me regress, bouncy castles, spending too much time with my parents, being told what to do, spending time with certain friends. Maybe it would be better to write a post about what doesn’t turn me into a fair impression of Kevin! (Ok, if you have no idea who I’m talking about, 1) you must be far too young to have any kids!  and 2) you need to watch this video of Harry Enfield being Kevin!!) *WORD OF CAUTION, CONTAINS THE WORD ‘BLOODY’* 

The worst offender though, hands down, has to be mornings. I hate them really seriously, can’t stand them. Some days, and I swear I’m not being melodramatic here, they hurt me. I genuinely feel as if I may have sleep walked in the night and tripped over the stairgate and landed on my face. It’s like morning has whacked me in the eyes and is sat on my back like a pro wrestler finishing a grudge match, (I’ll be honest, no idea what one of these is but I’m pretty sure it is related to wrestling. It sounds good and angry anyway!), pinning me down, keeping my face pressed into the pillow.

No matter what is thrown at me, be it noise, poking, large leaps off the bedframe that wind me, I can’t physically move. This is worse dependant on what the clock says. The painful glow of the LED display that sears into my retina when I have managed to open my eye a sliver, occasionally helped by teeny prying fingers, determines the level of pain, anything before six is desperate, between six and half past is just about bearable and after half six I jump out of bed singing. (Hah, unlikely!)

I think it demonstrates time travel, before 6 am I am full Kevin, can just about manage a ‘hnurgh’ as a 2 year old flings questions at me, between 6 and half past, I am early 20s, hungover, far too little sleep but essentially not as angry as Kevin, (there may have been occasional, several, lots of, loads of mornings I woke up still a bit drunk in this era), and past half 6 I am fully functioning 30 year old, whatever that is, responsible parent, alert, alive, raring to go. Or at least able to function well enough to operate youtube on my mobile to find the extra long super whole series in one vid Peppas!*

Which brings me on to pre-child me. I’ve heard others say it before but I’m still so ashamed to admit that I actually judged parents that put the tv on for their kids in the morning. I know, I’m so sorry to all the people I mentally thought; ‘when I have kids I will get up with them and do baking or a craft activity instead of just putting them in front of the tv’, I’m so sorry for being a Smug McSmugerson. I put the tv on pretty much every morning, milkshake is the only way I can go from sub-human to fairly functional. Until that first cup of tea has taken effect, I have neither the patience nor the brain power to cope with the endless spider man jumps onto the couch, the endless questions about something I’m pretty sure I’ve explained 500 times already and don’t get me started on the fighting!! The peace that the half an hour of tv in the morning brings, gives me the ability to deal with all the dressing and washing and teeth cleaning and hair brushing that follows. Probably the caffeine helps too!!

*Just to clarify, I am joking, I don’t give my son Peppa overdose before 7am every morning
.sometimes it’s Ben and Holly! Another one there, sorry, I do admit to giggling at that one which you are apparently never supposed to do but come on, if you don’t find a joke funny, why the hell should anyone else you tell it to?! Anyway, I digress, small boy will in no way let anyone, stay in bed, there is stuff to climb, things to climb over, breakfast to eat and it all needs to happen downstairs and RIGHT NOW THIS VERY MINUTE!

Climbing playground – a review

Yes you read that right, a climbing playgroup. I almost don’t want to review this one as it is so amazing and I’d hate for it to get too busy for us to get a place!

Held at a proper climbing centre, The Warehouse in Gloucester, this playgroup is one of the best I’ve found. Having a very energetic young boy who started climbing at around 9 months, (the tv stand, yes I almost had a heart attack when I found him!*), this group is beyond perfection. Downstairs there is whole room full of climbing walls with different ability levels, overhangs, a slide you need to climb to get onto, and loads of teddies placed around the walls to give them something to aim for. The whole floor is crash matted too. Upstairs is a huge room full of active toys and a different craft each week, there is also a light up climbing wall that they can play games on and an automatic belay room for the more adventurous.

There are instructors there to keep an eye out and offer advice and support but they are equally relaxed and allow you to do whatever your child is enjoying at the time with no enforced structure. There are no raised eyebrows or glares if any of the littlies get a bit over excited, noisy or exuberant, but generally, this is at a minimum anyway as they can do what comes naturally and climb, swing, bounce, hop or roll around to their heart’s content. That being said, there is more then enough space for all this to happen without anyone getting injured so the anxiety that usually accompanies a playgroup visit isn’t there so maybe I’m not as hyper aware of things.

In the 4 times we’ve been, there has been a huge improvement, from needing guidance on every step, and literally a leg up at times, to having confidence going up but needing a lift back down, small boy is now flying up and down, planning his route to get to his toy of choice and even got to try out the automatic belay room. He is getting braver by the week and is definitely much more controlled, plus his need to climb everyhting away from the group has been curbed somewhat, making life much more relaxing for me!

Sessions are called Mini Mice and run on a Monday, Wednesday and Friday term time 10.00 – 12.00 and cost ÂŁ3.50. On your first visit you need to pay ÂŁ2.00 for membership which lasts a year. There are also lots of things on suitable for older children and events there for all ages that run through the holidays as well.

There is a cafe downstairs where you can get takeaway coffees to take up and sell the most wickedly sinful & amazing flapjack I’ve ever had and maybe best of all, toilets on each floor for those, ‘I needed to go 5 minutes ago and now it’s so desperate I’m having to grasp my crotch to stop it coming out’ moments! (Him not me I must add here!!)

We both look forward to this so much every week, he gets tired very quickly still, so about half an hour of actual climbing interspersed with play breaks, snacks and new this week was watching the big boys doing proper climbing, is enough for him. A massive added bonus is also that there is an enormous building site behind the centre and they can quite happily spend a good ten minutes just watching the machinery whilst my friend and I can take a rare moment to actually start and finish a conversation!

*Just to clarify, I didn’t make a habit of leaving him unattended, well ok, maybe a little bit, he is the second after all, but I’d literally only just popped into the kitchen to make a cup of tea, (that I could let go stone cold and rediscover later), and he was safely contained in this giant donut thing. Or not, as it turned out!

Swimming

Going Swimming.

How I imagine it.

Get the bus to the pool, special treat so everyone behaves perfectly, walk to the pool, change, get in the pool, have lots of fun, dry off, dress, go home happy.

The reality.

Can’t find the armbands, where on earth can they be? Find three eventually, wonder if it would be possible to manage with three…..realise that is a silly idea and resume search. Find the other armband in the dog bed.

Bus leaves in 9 minutes.

Feeling the stress. Gather costumes and towels, wondering all the while why I didn’t do this earlier because when I took advantage of the mythical hypnotic powers of a certain cartoon pig, I instead sat down and browsed buzzfeed with a cup of tea! Can’t find a bag, how this is possible?! I have no idea, we must have 50 bags of varying types scattered round the house, presumably they are all in a cupboard together somewhere.

(My children are collectors and hoarders, we recently found all my son’s precious teddys and both bedtime cloths at the back of a bathroom cupboard after three whole weeks of searching, I wouldn’t mind but they seem to forget almost instantly where they put things and look as surprised as us when they reappear!)

Kids and dog all excited and as usual, need to all be as close as possible, preferably touching me while I attempt to run round the house gathering things up.

Bus in 7 mins.

Instruct kids to put shoes on. Cue debate about appropriate footwear, I deem sparkly beaded party shoes unsuitable, am floored by the argument that going swimming is as exciting as a party and so should be allowed. No time to argue.

Leave. Lock door.

Realise my phone is not in my bag, debate leaving it but in the 30 seconds I am thinking about it my mind has conjured up such a terrifying scenario involving a bus accident, a severed leg and the need I would have for that phone that I run back in.

Despite firm instruction to the contrary, dog goes out, kids follow me back in.

Bus in 4 mins.

March everyone, (minus the dog!), to the bus stop, doing a very fair imitation of a Sargeant Major preparing soldiers for a drill in front of the Queen.

Have to chivvy and encourage every 20 seconds until we reach the bus stop.

Bus is late. Thank goodness!

Bus arrives and arguments commence over……who gives the driver the money, where we sit and who presses the bell. There is then a short walk to the pool, 25 slow minutes later, after inspecting every ant, piece of fluff, stick, bird poo and old chewing gum, we make it to the pool, squeeze into a tiny cubicle where there is lots of elbowing and questioning over the need to remove clothes, (big girl), and the need to wear swim shorts at all, (small boy), and then finally, the raging war over who puts the locker token in tips me over the edge and I make an emergency call to Mr Bear for reinforcements.

I’m just so glad I went back for my phone, this is just so much worse then anything my imagination could conjure up!!

Driving anywhere with kids.

This is every journey I go on with my two little cherubs. Regardless of length of journey, this will continue until we reach our destination, however far away it might be!

I’m going to do each child’s sentences in their favourite colours to make it easier for you to distinguish who is talking. Pink is 4yo daughter, (unsurprising really!), and green is 2yo son.

Please don’t assume that this played out line by line, if you can, try and imagine that both children are vying to be the loudest at all points in time, from the minute both are in their seats ready to go anywhere. Also, if we are going somewhere new, you can add in the sat nav for good measure!

Ready? Ok, then I’ll begin.

Deep breath everyone……

“Muuuuummy can you pass me my magazeeeeeeen? You said I could have it when we got in the car. Mummy? Muummy? Muuuuummmmmmy?’

“Mummy can you open my window please? More please. More. More”

“It doesn’t open any more then that sweetie, it’s a safety feature.”

“Why?”

“Mummmy muuuummy mmmmmmuuuuuummmmmmmmy, I dropped my magazine!”

“Haha I’ve still got mine”

“Muuummmy wah she still has hers and I dropped miiiiiiiine!”

“Want to look at mine?”

“Yes please.”

“Well you can’t! HA!”

“Waaaaaaaaah she’s being meeaaaan”

“Children please!” (Groping around in the back footwell frantically, trying to locate the magazine before the looming roundabout necessitates needing the vital arm for a gear change.)

“That way a bit, that way, that way!”

“Which way?!” I can’t look I’m driving, towards the door or away?”

“Just look in the mirror, I’m showing you.”

“I can’t look in the mirror, I’m driving”

“You can, just look,       look,         look,        look,        you’re not looking!”

“You can do it mummy!”

Magazine retrieved at last, peace reigns for, oooh, 10 seconds.

“My arm is cold, please close the window.”

“No, it’s my window and I want it open.”

“Closed”

“Open”

“Waaaaaaaah”

Half close the window, both in uproar at the grand unfairness of meeting halfway.

“I love this song it’s my favourite, turn it up mummy.”

“No, it’s too noisy.”

“Is not!”

“Is too”

“Is not”

“I’ve dropped my magazeeeeeen!!”

So it continues. It used to stop when they fell asleep but that is getting rarer and rarer. So if you see a mega stressed mum, frantically trying to drive safely whilst digging around in the archaeological dig of maps of farm parks, socks, coats for all seasons and a variety of damn magazines in the back footwells, spare a thought for her, because it may well be me!

I know for a fact I’m not alone here from chatting to friends so do feel free to share the horror of car journeys in your household!

Hair.

So, my first blog post, I have been agonising about this for ages, what should I write about, do I need to set the tone for my whole blog from the outset, what is the tone for my whole blog?!

Then this morning it came to me, I would write my first blog post about…..A Hello Kitty Comb!

A tiny, plastic comb that came free with some hideous pink filled magazine that has a prong snapped off. Why is this even post-worthy? Well because this is all I had to make my 4 year old daughter’s very thick hair go from ‘birdnest with extra scarecrow’ to ‘smooth, sleek and tamed into Elsa hair’. A difficult task at the best of times but did I mention that we were also late, this is rare, very unusual an everyday occurrence, and there had been an awful lot of sibling fighting since their eyes opened, this is also rare, very unusual, an everyday occurrence and I was stressed and there I was trying to ease the knots a boy scout would be proud of, out of the hair of a squealing, wriggling, wilful daughter who may or may not be an animagus, she was certainly channeling the evasive maneuvers that an eel would be proud of.

After a good ten minutes, I was at the point of giving up.

“This is too hard, a brush will make it so much quicker and easier and much less painful.”, I try and reason with her.

“NO”, is her well thought out and reasonable contribution to the debate.

A split second later I realise my mistake, I have no idea where any of the 6 brushes I’ve bought over the 4 hideous years of this battle reigning on are. Not a one. I try and act nonchalant and carry on with the stupid tiny comb but she stiffens slightly and I know that she knows. It’s as if she can read my mind. She spins round, locks eyes with me, and says;

“Ok, no more comb, I only want it done with the brush. The pink one with the missing bristle and the tag still on. The one we haven’t seen since last February”, (ok so I may have made that last bit up, I’m sure that’s what she finished with in her mind though!), I try reasoning with her a bit more, I then fly unsuccessfully through bribery, land swiftly on threats, and, with a glance at the clock, land firmly on give up!

So we leave the house, yet again, with one side of her hair looking like she’d just stepped out of the salon and the other looking, well, a bit like mine really!

Hope you enjoyed reading this and please do comment if you can relate!