Thursday, 30 March 2017

Meltdown

When my Mum went to America recently she bought my daughter a neon pink t-shirt, which has "I'm two and there's nothing you can do about it" daubed across the bosom. I can't wait for her to wear it. Then people watching from afar, as I attempt a  WWF maneuver trying to get a screaming toddler into the buggy, will realise that she's two and that explains everything and that it's ok. This is normal. And also, the whole "Terrible Twos" thang is balls. It starts much, much earlier. 




 Before the birth of my small person, I was guilty of tutting and passing comment on parents that supposedly couldn't control their screaming brood, bubbling and frothing at the mouth in full tantrum (the child not the parent). What a bastard I was. I am sorry if you were one of those parents and you felt my cold, hard stare as you desperately tried to console your small one and get the straps on them to stop themselves hurling onto the marble floor of Westfield. I now realise how wrong I was.
 When you are in the middle of a full on small child meltdown there really is nothing you can do other than try and stay calm. When my daughter was a baby the crying was seen as cute and people would stop and say, "Ah. Someone needs a feed" or "ah, someone's tired" Really useful idioms that are supposed to be helpful and understanding but that really get up your skirt. Just piss off and let me get on with it. I remember when she was about 14 months old, I was on as train and made the schoolgirl error of letting her sit on the seat. We were only going four stops. I know, silly mare. Should have kept her in the buggy. When we got to the stop before we had to get off I prepared my bags and then attempted the transition of train seat to buggy. She practically kicked the thing over and did this ear piercing scream. I could see people physically suck their teeth and squint as the noise was so powerful. The sort of high pitch used in the  training of dogs. I really didn't care and pushed on through until she was strapped in. I left the carriage with my head held high, laughing it off.  

 Now that she is a fully fledged toddler things aren't quite so simple. By and large she is a pretty good gal and public outbursts are few and far between. However, when she is tired, hungry, bored or just being nearly two all hell can break loose. 
 When we were holidaying in Northumberland last summer I actually saw her frothing at the  mouth in Alnwick Castle Gardens as she really didn't want to get in that buggy. It took two of us to wrestle with her and do up the straps to prevent her falling into a very prickly, tetanus inducing looking bush.  I was so cross with her that I stormed off and refused to speak to her for half an hour and pretended that we weren't related in any way, leaving her father to push her screaming, red faced and still frothing at the mouth.
We've had another full on buggy related meltdown in John Lewis. The hallowed turf of JL for goodness sake. They are never knowingly undersold and their staff are never knowingly ruddy saints. One of their staff members in haberdashery (please note I was not buying buttons or hemming. We just ended up there because there were fewer witnesses to the meltdown) dangled her lego keyring infront of my crimson daughter and this seemed to do the trick as I quickly tried to fasten the straps. When you are doing reconnaissance for your first pram purchase, try timing yourself as to how quickly any model can be flattened and then fastened with a moving object in it. If it's quick and can be done by an individual, then that's the pram for you. Any fannying about with two or three participants and complicated clasps then forget it. They don't tell you that at NCT.

It's amazing what really pisses a toddler off. Living with them is like living with a very hormonal woman. You can be treading on egg shells with every step you take. 
Here is a list of potential things that could cause Meltdown:
1. Sock has turned round or slipped down over heel
2. Packet to the cereal bar isn't far enough down for ease of consumption
3. Apple juice has not been served with a straw
4. You have chosen the wrong shoes
5. You have chosen the wrong coat
6. The cheese is not grated
7. You weren't quick enough holding their hand
8. You have walked the wrong way in the park. They wanted to go through the quagmire of dog shit to the left. 
9. I wanted to eat the dirt off the end of that pointy stick.
10. The temperature in my bedroom is three degrees above the desired temperature of 18 degrees.
11. No. I wanted Cheerios NOT Weetabix woman.

I mean, I could on but for those of you that have children these are pretty standard as I understand it. Luckily, we haven’t got to the hitting or pinching phase but I am mighty sure that it’s not far away. So, until the next time, make like Paddington and Aunt Lucy and get in that storm shelter. There’s a toddler shaped twister a comin’

Tuesday, 28 March 2017

Mum and Toddler groups


 Mum and toddler groups. Hmmm. Yep, I know. I had a lot of preconceptions of what these were like before I had a child. Images of a lot of glazed over women that needed to go back to work and get a good sleep/shag came to mind. They would be run by an overexcited female in her late 20’s, early 30’s that did a performing arts or drama degree at University and doesn’t have a great sense of humour but really wishes she’d just “had a go” at an acting career. When you walk in all eyes will be on you. You are judged on how you are dressed, how your child is dressed, whether you’ve lost all the weight and how well you’re doing at said weight loss when they look at the age of your child. You sit in a corner or the wrong place ie. Astrid always sits there with her NCT friend, sporting a fresh shellac mani. There is one Dad who has had a day off and is hugging a flat white whilst checking work emails. And then the class starts and you have to hold a rattle or shaker that has seen better days and may or may not have seen a Dettol wipe….
 And guess what…I was absolutely right. I hate them. Having taught early years I know that having parents in the session is just awful. Half the time they are all catching up with each other, having a ruddy good chin wag during the dancing bit when you need them to watch their sporn so they don’t twat their heads on the stack of tables in the corner. Meanwhile, you’re busting your arse entertaining their little shits with Dingly Dangly scarecrow and they’re talking about kids yoga and the skiing holiday they’ve recently had in Verbier. But from the other side, being a participating parent, they truly are hideous. I used to go occasionally to one when small person was a baby but I couldn’t go a lot of the time as I went back to work properly after a matter of months of her shooting out of my foof. Every cloud.

 When we moved house I thought that I had better make an effort and go along to one of these ruddy things to make friends and also my daughter is at an age where I thought she needed to be stimulated at every second of the day. Oh God. It was just… urgh. It cost me £6, I was hounded out for wearing Tu pretty darn quickly and I was the only one without a facial peel or a personal trainer. I also sat in the wrong place. Silly me for placing my cellulitey arse cheeks between two women that were NCT mates. What a twat I was. (I tried going the next week and the bastards ignored me). I was the only Mum that sang along properly with full belt and chest voice but the main thing is that my kid hated it. Now, she’s usually the first one up on the dance floor for Wind the Bobbin up, but some little sod had pulled a rattle out of her paws and she’s far too polite to smack him in the face. He had also pushed her out of the way during bubble time. I have tried some other groups and I always just stand around on my own making sarcy quips which the other mothers think are weird or plain offensive so I have finally made the decision to fuck it. Fuck ’em. I would rather spend £6 at Toddler Gym where my daughter charges around and crashes into shit. She’s not learning rhymes or poetry, she’s not catching norovirus from a rattle and she’s not being smacked in the face by Tarquin. I feel quite liberated. Anyway, she goes to loads of stuff with our two amazing childminders so a day with Mama is going to be a quieter, simpler affair from now on.


We go to a café for a “cino” as she calls it (she’s so frickin Surrey)  and consume lots of cake. We make a shop out of the laundry horse with Daddy’s pants hanging up on it. We dance like idiots to show tunes and Nelly the Elephant (The Dolls version). We go to the park where she can run and shout meow at small dogs and really offend the owner. We look at planes, ducks, geese and sneak up on deer using imaginary binoculars. Walk through dog shit (bloody dog owners), carry round shitty wipes until a bin is found and play with sticks and eat the dirt off the end. Now that’s what I call entertainment. No bubbles, no crap renditions of over sung kids songs and no vile children picking on my first born. Yes- poo to toddler groups. Poo I say. Run free my friends, run free! 

Tuesday, 21 March 2017

Teeth be the root of all evil.

So, you know I said that the sleep was better and that  sleep training had been quite successful? You remember I said that, right? Hmm. Well, that was pretty much the kiss of death on that one. As soon as I opened my big mouth a huge, sodding, evil molar started to protrude from the top gum. Oh hip ruddy hooray. 
Teeth, they are indeed the root of all evil. It's a really shit design fault in the evolution of babies and toddlers. We have been dealt a particularly bad hand when it comes to teeth. I was told by lots of well meaning folk and my mother in law, that they come in pairs and there is an exact order so there should be gaps in pain and general trauma. Cobblers, I tell ye, cobblers! My daughters teeth have been all over the ruddy shop, have all come one after another and have caused maximum distress on me and her. I have lived through each and every one. I take some of the credit for those enamel bastards. The first ones meant an entire Christmas breastfeeding all night on the floor of my mothers study, which is not large, walloping my assets over the side of the Sleepyhead pod. Also, Ewan the dream sheep ran out of batteries at one point so there was a major meltdown from me and the small one. You can't get triple A's on Christmas Day.

 We have had all nighters, diarrhea down the leg, diarrhea on the beige carpet, vomiting in the cot from over zealous finger chewing, refusal to eat anything but an Organix corn snack, truly ratty behaviour, crap naps and very sore nips from feeding round the clock. Her room looks like a scene from Wolf of Wall Street, as it's covered in white powder from sachets of teething granules being strewn around the room in the dark.
In many ways, when I was breastfeeding, teething was much easier. I knew the score. Lots of feeding to sooth, followed by an hour and three quarters on my shoulder, pacing the flat in the early hours as the fecker cut through. No probs. Now, post breast feeding things aren't quite as simple. At least now there's some vocab so my daughter can communicate if she needs Calpol/Nurofen/ Nielsen's granules. But there is also the screaming and the need for Mummy in the room all night. She calls out for me too so if I don't go in, it means I'm a total git. And molars are big muthas. Her bottom back ones have been threatening to come through since October. Apparently the bottom ones come through first but oh no. In true small person form, the top ones are having a crack first.

I blame a lot on teething. Bad sleep, bad behaviour, Brexit...Trump. I use it as an excuse for everything. "Oh, I've not cleaned the bog because small one is teething." "I drank all the Malbec as we were up all night with teething." "I didn't brush my teeth today because of..." you get the general idea. And the thing is you never really know if they really are teething or not, especially under the age of 18 months. My daughter has now realised that Calpol is well nice so asks for it at every available opportunity. And I don't blame her. It is 'well nice'. I was never given Calpol as a child as my Mum was a nurse and thought that Actifed was the way forward. I think it's since been banned. (Might explain a lot.)
 So, the teeth have caused all sorts of strife in our household. I truly believe that once all of these teeth are through that order will be restored in the world. World peace will finally sweep across the land, we shall have restful slumber every night and the cellulite hanging off my arse will magically melt away. But as my husband said, there'll be something else. Oh yes my friend, I'm sure there will...

Monday, 20 March 2017

Not going out.

It’s the weekend! Whoop! Weekends mean Daddy’s home, lazy mornings, trips to John Lewis or maybe a National Trust property. Yes- we know how to partay. They used to mean drinks after work and I mean lots of drinks after work, maybe a theatre trip or a comedy gig, waking up on Saturday morning with my pillow case covered in the previous days make up, breath like a badgers nethers and a heavy feeling of regret. Good times.
The thought of this freedom being suddenly taken away from me used to worry the hell out of me. Going out on the town and painting it a shade of crimson was part of me. I was a bit of a party girl. Coming home in the early hours by night bus or otherwise was part of my routine. My friends and I would order two, nay three bottles of wine with no dinner and thought that was a ruddy good idea, do a tactical chunder and push on into our third hour of karaoke at Lucky Voice. Then, gradually one by one, many of us got preggers. And gradually, one by one we grew up a bit. I mean, I haven’t completely. I’m still an overgrown idiot who laughs at people saying “hamster” in an inappropriate way or still sits in talks or events pricking about at the back. But when it comes to going out, I’m kind of over it. A bit. I like going out, don’t get me wrong but a different kind of going out. Many of my friends reading this will be saying under their breaths,”Bullshit, Harriet”, and granted I was placed in a taxi after my works Christmas bash but in my defence, I was trying to count my drinks and that was made very difficult by people buying them for me and I hadn’t had any dinner. To be fair, I was trying out a pair of mock leather trousers and there wasn’t much room for a Linda McCartney Sausage in there if I’m completely honest (no pun intended). Four pounds of prize baby weight is still hanging on or hanging out for dear life.


When the oop goes down, I’m tired and like Moley in Wind in the Willows, I miss my home. Home is where my small person is. Evenings now consist of Netflix, glass or two of red (only three nights a week) and a cup of tea to take to bed. Oh, and catching up on The Archers. It's been very exciting of late and one of best mates plays Tracy Horrobin. Also, the past few weeks I’ve been on Paw Patrol so my evenings have been cut short. We’ve been completely addicted to Bloodline. It’s so sodding good. Two eps a night. It’s a commitment. There’s no time to go out. Also, Line of Duty is back on Sunday so that's another commitment in my diary. And House of Cards should be back and christ, hopefully another Bloodline. 
You see, with such a full diary when is there time to go out? If I am going to go out I require a decent pub with good wine list and quiet music so that I can actually hear myself think. I have turned into the sort of person that has to walk out of Hollister, after the initial luring in by six packed, betightpanted youth, as it's too dark and too loud. Not that I shop at Hollister but you get my drift yo.
And also, I'm nearly 40 and have reached an age where I don't care as much what people think and am a lot happier than when I was in my twenties. I don't have to do everything and don't care if I miss out. I have responsibilities and that's ok. So, night all. If you fancy a quiet night in a pub then drop me a line. But don't get me wrong, I can still make a large hole in a bottle of Shiraz and no mistake. Just don't ask me to go clubbing afterwards. Night, night, slippers on. Now, what's Linda Snell up to?

Friday, 17 March 2017

Sleep Training


Yeah. I’ve been abit crap with the old blogging this week. Been to see my Mum for a couple of days. I’ll tell you about her at another juncture. She’s awesome. I’ve also been…..SLEEP TRAINING. aaaaarrrgggghhh
Yes. We decided that now we are through the worst of the sleep regression/growth spurt/ brain development/ molar movement/ all other excuses that I use for my first born’s sleep, that we would indeed crack on with a bit of SLEEP TRAINING.
Sleep Training: The sort of word that should always be preceded with an Edvard Munch screamesque emoji. You’re probably thinking why the hell have we not done this before. Your kid’s sleep is a frickin disaster. Surely, some sort of training program has been implemented. Oh, my friends it has and, yes of course we have tried sleep training. Believe me we have. I’ve done bits of The Baby Whisperer, glanced at Gina and we all know where that ended up (Fara in Surbiton). Read stuff on t’internet about Mr. Ferberiser. Personally, I could never do this technique because a. I would end being an emotional wreck and b. it sounds like a type of vibrator in Ann Summers.
I have taken bits of all sorts of techniques and come up with my own. Every child is different and mine is certainly different in the best possible way. My daughter always goes for the laugh. Puts knickers on her head, makes antlers out of cutlery, uses her pyjamas for toddler morris dancing. She has also learnt the word,’Peacock’ but doesn’t always add the pea. (That’s fun on public transport when she shouts that out). I always said that I would rather have the kid from the film Parenthood, that sticks its head in the bin, than a genius that knows all of its colours by the time its 17 months.
My small one doesn’t like me staying in the room and talk her through it. She finds that incredibly stressful or possibly highly irritating. I would. Having someone staring at you from the dark talking you through the fact that you’re not asleep would really get up my kilt.
She doesn’t like me sitting next to her and slowly creeping away. That just makes her angry. She doesn’t like me picking her up particularly. The thing that we just need to crack is ending the paw patrol.
Basically, our method happened by accident. I decided to walk to the big Sainsburys on Saturday night. I needed some fresh air and some much needed exercise. We also needed tea bags and milk. The small one waved me off and went down no probs for her Pa. She woke up a bit that night but I did not once sleep on the floor.
The next night, I wasn’t there at all as I was at a Cat café with some friends. Now, I’m allergic to cats and more of a dog person. I had also  perused the menu before we went and there was no champers. Cream tea with no Champers. What’s the actual point!? Anyway, I survived and had a ruddy brilliant night with some of my besties. We went for one drink so we’ve all finally grown up. My better half also survived. I got a text asking me what else he  could feed our young one as she was, having a feeding frenzy. Again, she woke up a wee bit but my God, I’ll take going in a couple of times to do a calming stroke of the hair rather than an entire night on paw patrol. We had a bit of a crap night, granted on Monday but I cocked up there as we were at my Mum’s and after a couple of glasses of Malbec I thought it would be nice to snuggle in the big bed. She spent all night trying to use me as some glorified soft play area. At one point she actually tried to climb on my face but I’m not going to beat myself up as the next night Mum took the monitor and I had eight hours! Yes, eight hours. The amount of sleep that you’re supposed to have. Boom shackalack! Thanks Mum. You’re a star. Apparently, there was a bit of thrashing about so Mum slept in the spare bed next to her but they had a good night. The next morning, I went in and there was my little angle snuggled in the big bed with her Grandad watching Paw Patrol. Oh, the irony.


So, things for now are looking up. There’s been a bit of hysteria, a bit of swearing (from me) and a couple of broken nights but she’s getting the idea. This is a hard habit to crack and she’s doing really well. I feel incredibly responsible as it’s my doing but hey; parenthood is trial and much error isn’t it? You can read all the books in Waterstones but when you’re stood at the hard, cold face of parenting, wearing a snot covered Berghaus fleece, no amount of well-intentioned literature will get you through an epic toddler melt down. Anyway, Fara in Surbtion have done rather well out of me, haven’t they?

Sunday, 12 March 2017

Our little life is rounded with a sleep.

So, I bet your're all peeing yourselves with anticipation to find out how my night out went? No? What' that? You'd rather kick yourself in the face with a golf shoe? Fair enough. I'll tell ya anyway. 

 I got a text from my chap as I was on my way home from my friends house. A convivial, laid back, impromptu wine and pizza night. Early doors. School night. All got kids. 
The text read, "The kraken has arisen!". I rang him. He had a dilemma of whether to go in or to sit it out until I got home. He went in. 
I got to my front and she was hysterical. Proper ploppy tears and shoulders going up and down like a pair of fire bellows. I dumped my handbag down, took my shoes off, unplugged my phones and paused the episode of 'Scummy Mummies' that I was listening to and ran in. As soon as she saw me she tried to throw herself out of Daddy's arms and wrapped herself around my neck like a paranoid koala who thinks someone is trying to take away his eucalyptus. And I mean ALL the eucalyptus.
She eventually calmed down but half way through the night I ended up on the spare duvet with Paw Patrol in full swing (right hand, sixth bar of the cot).  I woke up the next morning feeling knackered. I peeled myself off the floor, gently removed my hand from the cot and fell into a shower. This was the sort of day when there isn't enough Touch Eclat in the world to cover up the damage. Foundation was trowelled onto my face and I sunk three soya flat whites before the hour of 11. Dark times my friends. Dark times.

 People tell you about the "sleep thing" when you embark on parenthood but you don't really listen. I did actually have some insight into what went on. I remember staying overnight with one of my best friends and her two week old little boy. We went to bed and within two hours of just reaching deep sleep this little chap had got other ideas.The next morning I felt like utter shite.and thought, "How does one function on so little sleep?".
The answer is you just do. But not always. If we've put in an all nighter, you don't function. The day is a right off, it becomes about getting through it. Tears, coffee, nappy change and more tears, more coffee and more nappy changes. Going outside feels abnormal. When I've not slept it feels like my head is in a goldfish bowl. Time slows down, clarity of thought evaporates, reason goes too and you turn into a snappy, naggy, hag woman with eyes like a panda from all the crying. So, here is a list of the things that I have done through sleep deprivation:
- Go out of the front door on my way to work without any shoes on.
- Go to work without a bra on. (Pepsi and Shirley need restraining believe me)
- miss a voice booking
- Turn up for a voice over session in Oxford that I was never booked for
- Lock my daughter in our flat whilst taking out the bins as I forgot to wedge the door open
- cancel or miss meetings with friends
- be a real class A cow to my gorgeous husband
- put on an inordinate amount of weight
- eat cake, cheese and chocolate as if they were my five a day
- forget my debit card pin
-forget how to start my car
-forget the basics of English Grammar  ( this blog proves that one)
- lose my libido. It's like Lord Lucan or Shergar? Where did it go?

So, it's no wonder that sleep deprivation is used as a form of torture. You lose yourself and your senses. It makes you ill and you stop looking after yourself. I have just come out of a month of 2/3 hours sleep a night. The result of which has been a chest infection teamed with a Glaswegian housewife cough. I've put on half a stone, my roots need doing and I really need to start jogging again. We go through these challenging patches and it seems to calm for a week or two. Until the next growth spurt, tooth, cold, bout of the trots, 'R' in the month or the clocks changing. But you know what? She's worth it. As a hare once said, I love her right up to the moon and back. 
Oh Rats. The clocks are due to go forward aren't they? Bring. It. On. 

Friday, 10 March 2017

Paw Patrol

Paw Patrol

Well, I’m feeling quite chipper this morning. I actually slept in my own bed, next to my husband for most of the night. Not all of the night, obvs but it’s a bit of a breakthrough. The charging round the park seems to have paid off. I am off to work today with my laptop. I am currently typing on my way to work. I am wearing a faux fur leopard print coat so I look a bit of a ponce. In my eyes, I am south west London’s answer to Carrie Bradshaw but I probably resemble a rotund big cat who should step away from the Viennese whirls. However, I am sporting a strong red lip. This detracts from the bags under my eyes.

So, you may be wondering what happens at night? How does this adorable little lass turn into a gremlin after dark. I don’t water her and I don’t feed her after midnight so where does it go wrong? We are now at the stage by where if anyone else goes in at night (her father included), my small person let’s out a scream which sounds like she’s being abducted by masked men. It’s truly ear drum bursting. The other night, I was too shattered and ill with a chest infection to deal with her so I was a terrible mother and let her cry for a bit. My husband decided to take one for the team and go in. Sweet. Mother. Of. Pearl. I’ve never heard nowt like it. It went on for half an hour. An ear splitting scream that ricocheted around the walls. I thought that we had disturbed the neighbours as our door buzzer went at 2 in the morning but apparently it was the police. It’s ok. No one had dobbed us in for being crap parents. They were looking for a missing person. (Crap parents don’t paint their daughters walls with Farrow & Ball paint. I had suggested to my husband that we could probably colour match and go to Homebase but he was having none of it. Only the best for his little girl and it did go on for very well. Good coverage. Nice overall effect).
The noise was so loud that the foxes didn’t bother going through the recycling and shitting next to the tub of daffs. Every cloud. I gave in and as soon as I went in the noise magically stopped. Part of you as mother thinks “Yeah, I got the magic touch” but after nearly two years that feeling has kind of worn off. I lay down on the spare duvet and presented my “paw” into the cot. She conked out until 7.
So what is this “paw” I hear you cry? Well, my daughter is a rather tactile old fart. I think it comes from being brestfed but then again I think a lot of things and most of those turn out to be utter bolllocks. She has always been gorgeously cuddly and loves holding hands and rubbing my wrist. She has done this since I stopped breastfeeding and likes to do it whilst she has her bottle. No- she won’t take a cup and she won’t drink cow’s milk. Good old cow and gate it is.
 The love of Mummy’s paw has gradually crept into the night time ritual. This entails me lying next to her, placing my right hand through the sixth bar of the cot and waiting pensively for her to go into a deep sleep whilst listening to several rounds of the harp music of Ewan the dream sheep. It has to be the right hand as there is no watch or rings to irritate her and it has to be the sixth bar because that is most comfortable for her. Other than that, she’s not high maintenance at all!  I know when she’s in a deep sleep as she snores like an overweight, middle aged man with sleep apnoea. At this point I gradually remove my paw and literally back out the room like someone from the bomb disposal unit. Some nights this is all it takes. I might have to go in once or twice on my paw patrol (as my husband now calls it) but other nights the spare bedding is placed on the floor as she wants to hold my hand all night. Removing my hand is like playing Buckaroo. Ya never know when it’s gonna kick off. So this has been the way it is since we moved house in October of last year. We have a really nice bedroom and a very comfy bed with memory foam pillows. Sadly, it’s been so long that my pillow has now forgotten me.

Anyway, I am due to go out tonight and my man is in charge. I’m not going very far. I wonder what sort of night I shall have? Paw patrol at the ready.

Wednesday, 8 March 2017

Hello. I'm Harriet, a 38 year old voice over artist, wife to a gorgeous husband with labradoresque energy and first time mum to a spirited, soon to be two year old girl with really cool hair. I've been wanting to put my thoughts down on paper for a while and share with you my peaks and troughs of parenting, working and wifeing. Finally, last night I had more than four hours sleep (in one block) so during a particularly light voice over session I decided to start writing. It's quite a relief to just start actually. My background is voice over and acting but along the way I've dabbled in stand up, sketch comedy and burlesque. I've had an urge to use my brain and get some creativity going for a while so I thought, why not write? When you're up at 2 in the morning, get it down on paper/screen. Share those stories of woe from the floor of your daughters bedroom. You see, when the stork was distributing little people, I received a beautiful curly haired girl with eyes like sapphires and a smile that lights up a room. She's funny, she's abit of a prat (she likes to put things on her head) and we have just found out that she likes the soundtrack to Saturday Night Fever. When said stork delivered, he also delivered a truly crap sleeper. And I mean unbelievably crap. I've not had a full nights sleep since January 2015, when I was round with child and peeing every two hours.

 When I embarked on motherhood I only had my sister as a point of reference. In my eyes she is a ruddy super mum. Mother of two, just gone back to work. The sort of person that just keeps everything going and the plates all spinning. I hate to tell you as well but she's nice. Not like "nice" but genuinely nice. One of life's goodens. So, that was the role model I had.
When my daughter was baking in the oven I had decided what sort of parent I was going to be. I was going to be a no nonsense, Gina Ford mo fo who was going to take no shit from this baby. My life wasn't going to change. I was still going to have a painted nail and a strong lip. Wear heels, go out and get paralytic on Argentinian Malbec and fall out of taxis my friends had put me in. I was going to have an amazing sex life. Lose all my baby weight and be fitter than I was before I had the baby. Like Michelle Obama arm kind of fit. The sort of fit that posts a sodding handstand on instatwat.
So..... now we're nearly two years on how did that pan out then Harriet ? Hmmm? What's that? The Gina Ford book is in the Surbiton branch of Fara? So what happened, Harriet? You were so irritatingly self assured of the type of mother you were going to be that you actually told people. You laughed in the face of co-sleeping, sling wearing, hippy wankers that Brest fed on demand....
What!? You became a co-sleeping, sling wearing, hippy wanker that breast fed  on demand.Yes. I darn well did. That little girl melted my heart, made a mess of my flute on the way out and took away a large percentage of my grey matter. After the first two days I rang my mother in floods of tears saying, "I'm not coping as well as I thought I would." I was a bit lost. Looking out of the window, stuck on the sofa breastfeeding round the clock. Unable to run out into the great outdoors and go to my third Zumba sesh of the week.
Ya see, in my previous life I had been an avid post it note user, organiser and the kind of person that can get out of a house on time and arrive early to all meetings and appointments. I could just get shit done. I found the first two weeks of motherhood very tough. I felt I was unable to leave my girl to cry for a second. I was there just for her. I was a wee bit out of my comfort zone and control had been taken out of my hands. Thank God for my husband. He was frickin awesome. He cleaned, changed nappies and babygros to the point I had to ask him to stop as I hadn't actually changed anything except bra size, hip size and IQ. And so the journey began. For the first two weeks my girl slept on top of me on top of a feeding pillow. That was probably where the night owl antics all began...

And so I embark on my blogging journey. If you fancy coming along with me you are most welcome. The monitor is on, the spare duvet is at the ready and I'm currently in bed waiting, watching, listening to said monitor. Little one has eaten well, had a good nap after lunch, done a poo and has bombed around the park for two hours. She must be knackered, I mean I'm knackered. You'd think she'd sleep through wouldn't you? Night ni....bugger. Just woken.

HMS Tena Lady.

 She’s back! Well, a slightly rotund sweaty version but the mojo has returned. The ruddy molar isn’t quite through yet but sleep has been h...