Not worth reading but need to erupt briefly…!

I HATE this so MUCH! Broke down in tears as signed the childminders forms today (I mean yesterday but since I haven’t been able to sleep it feels like this morning!) and am bitterly contemplating life as an absentee mummy! I wouldn’t sign my wedding rings over to a stranger and now I have had to sign my children over to one! Don’t get me wrong she is fab and she was so comforting when I had my blub but I don’t want to do this and I honestly don’t know that I can! This feels so far beyond simply not wanting to or disliking the idea… I feel like my heart is being ripped apart and my lungs are being squeezed empty of air – my head is back to spinning at the first sign of anxiety and I am laying in bed, tears literally running down my face as if someone’s squeezing a warm wet flannel over it and trying to keep the shuddering sobs to a minimum so as not to wake Poppy as she sleeps beside me, totally and blissfully unaware of my despair. How can I leave my babies at the door and wave goodbye and smile knowing that the next few hours are going to be filled with outpourings of grief from me and fearful non-understanding wails from Poppy even IF Izzy is totally fine with it. It was different when I went back to work after Izzy coz at least she was with family but this time it hurts even more :(. And for what? My first week I will earn about £50 after childcare! But it is money we will sorely need. I hate money – I am not even a materialistic person – I couldn’t give a toss about shoes and while I would like nice clothes I usually look at the price tag and walk away. I live in my mummy uniform of jeans and whatever top falls out of the wardrobe first and that is me, I am fine with that!
But I’m not fine with it for my girls. They deserve nice things, beautiful clothes. They deserve books to help them learn and food that broadens their senses (as opposed to chips and various chicken products). They deserve everything the world has to offer.
They deserve a mummy who is happy but in order to be happy I would have to give up the ability to give them all the things I want to give them. I can’t pretend to give them things they don’t have, but I can pretend to be happy when I’m not. So that is what I will do. Three days a week I will smile as I wave goodbye. I will work as hard as I can at remembering why and I will keep my head down and just make my way from one long weekend to the next knowing that I am not the only one who has to live that way.
And now, nearly 24hrs since I last slept and with probably only an hour or two before I will be woken up by those two boisterous but flipping gorgeous girls of mine, my brain feels like a full sponge I finally wrung out… a damn sight lighter amd potentially in a much better state to fall asleep.
When you can’t scream… write. If you can’t write… prepare for many such sleepless nights. Wish I had written it all down sooner now! 😦
TTFN xxxx

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Learning to play the game

I have often remarked on the cost of this, that and the other one and wondered even more frequently how others manage to survive in the current climate.  Today I had a bit of insight on how people can live well for less and while I am sure others learned these lessons long ago I thought I would share it anyway. This way the long running frugalists can laugh at my naivity and those uninitiated can, like me, wonder how something so simple has passed them by…

The secret is vouchers… so so simple! My brother invited our whole family (not a small unit) out for dinner and my husband and I looked at the menu and sighed. We couldn’t let him foot the bill solo, nor did we wish for my dad to foot the bill so we prepared for a fairly expensive get together. This was not a cheap place and for us it was three meals as obviously we are a family rather than a couple. On top of this it is my last paid month of maternity leave so not the month for splurges really! At the end of the meal though my brother pulled out £140 worth of clubcard vouchers! I realised that while we save initially by trying to shop smart at Aldi and Iceland there are still savings to be made by shopping at Tesco. We do have cards for Sainsburys as well but have always been fairly unimpressed with their scheme (we can spend £40 on a single basket of shopping but we never see any benefit from using our cards).

The other place I have come to utilise regularly is Boots and I love my Advantage card! As there is little difference in the cost of baby food from place to place I make my bulk purchases from there. If I have a hard up month I can use my points to buy nappies, food, shampoo etc., and if I collect loads and juggle my finances properly then heck, if I fancy a new lippie or want to colour my hair I can treat myself!

In addition to the wonderful world of vouchers there is good old fashioned shopping around and this, people, is my speciality. With the advent of Google there is little I cannot research and my goodness do I love research! Darren has long speculated that I could go on Mastermind with prams and pushchairs as my specialist subject as he finds my ability to identify them (and give brief snippets from reviews I have read) while out and about something of a novelty… and it isn’t just the make, model and pros and cons I can list – the value also creeps into my evaluation. And I can do it with other things too… I will rarely buy anything without thoroughly researching it online.

At the moment we have no need of another pushchair (well, four is enough when you only have two kids!), cot etc., and have done enough medical reading to be able to identify correctly a handful of Izzy illnesses as well as my father in law’s recent pneumonia (which ridiculously took the hospital a week to diagnose and subsequently treat, but that is another very frustrating and long winded story which belongs to him and so is not mine to share). So my attention is currently directed towards doggie research. We do intend to get a dog eventually though not until Poppy is up and walking and steady on her feet (my youngest brother was 18months when we got our beloved golden Labrador Sabre – sadly fell asleep last September aged 14 – and this seemed a good age) but as with everything else I like to study up first. In this instance it isn’t so much financial – I wanted to research breeds and their qualities etc. I am now a hive of information on lhasa apso’s, cocker spaniels and king charles spaniels (I would love another lab, but Sabre was one in a million and I couldn’t help but compare another one to him – plus our home is too small for it to be a pleasing home to any of the larger breeds). Am now onto training and insurance research but as Poppy is still only eight months old I figure I can take my time! 🙂

TTFN xxxx

Sneaky mummy…

Our three year old daughter Izzy suffers terribly once a month from constipation and despite having once upon a time been a keen eater of fruit and veg is now vehemently against eating anything green, anything orange unless it is spaghetti or any apples.  In short all soluble fibre which might help her monthly problem is a strictly no go area!

Last night Darren and I once again went through the process of stroking her hair and holding her hand as she screamed and writhed as finally her body managed to evacuate itself of solid matter and finally we cooed and soothed as she sobbed that she had been very brave girl hadn’t she and fell into the best sleep she has had this week. We hate this problem with a passion. Not least because as a sufferer of IBS I know how she feels and how painful it can be and to see my baby suffering with it too is horrible. Doctors keep telling us that some kids just get constipated a lot and hand over a prescription for lactulose or movicol while Darren and I desperately try to convince her to just try some carrots or apple or brown bread.

Today Darren successfully got her to have brown bread toast (yay!) and I have pondered on how to get some fruit or veg into her. The answer was sitting in front of me in the cupboard… she loves spaghetti which at least takes care of one of her five a day (thank goodness for tomato sauce!) and I know tomato helps but beside that was one of Poppy’s jars of pureed carrots. Having sneakily decanted it into a bowl I asked Izzy if she wanted to help me cook her lunch… can rely on her to say yes every time! So she mixed in the secret sauce and added a touch of pepper from our broken pepper mill (she likes pepper but if she used the working one her dinner would have been covered so I add that for her at the end), put it in the microwave and counted as it turned, did more stirring and finally she served it up into a bowl to have with her fishfingers.  She was so proud of her efforts that she wolfed down the lot saying how yummy it was! Of course she didn’t touch her peas (I never hide veg without putting some very visibly on her plate as well in the hope that one day she will forget herself and take a big bite) but I feel quietly chuffed with my small and silent victory. Until next month, anyway :(.

TTFN xxxx