Thursday, 31 March 2011

We Are Not At Home To Mr Can't.... We Are Not At Home....

Here's a weird one.

Well, we'd made a pact not to panic about the house thing (you know, like the whole eviction homelessness deal) until April. We've been counting down the days until The Panic can officially start - and Friday April the 1st is like, tomorrow. I'd been holding out that if we just believe, a perfect house will simply fall into our laps. Believe!!! Bloody belieeeeeeve!!!! Manifest darling, man-i-fest!!!!! Uhhhhhh.....

I've been moonfully whispering that on Friday I shall be compelled to put my dreams away. The hopeful house-hunting would become a blindfolded pin-stabbing and a hung-headed acceptance of scum-encircled fence-heightening. Sighs all dramatic-like. Hyphen-addiction is a proper condition OK?

There's been so little to get perky about on our New Home-O-Meter. Everything that's 'nice' is either way out of our price range, or way out of our current life/activities/friends' range. Or gone already when we ring up. Or won't allow children. (Probably wise actually.) We would either have to dig up some buried treasure, or just bury the children, or continuously circle every house in our 'magic triangle' desirable zone for a knob in a suit taking pictures, OR..... make one of those Fresh Start thingies.

Sounds all exciting does a Fresh Start. 'Cept I've done it before - plenty - and this time I'm digging my heels in. It's taken a good couple of years' effort to get to a 'place' where the kids have got friends I allow into the house and who's parents allow them into theirs, and for me to fit with a gang of grown-ups who don't look at me in disgust or pity everytime I spurt forth. Now this is something rare and beautiful. We have found our tribe. If not our right shack. Mr Roving Blade was gunning for moving to Essex. All his best clients are round there, Chelmsford's got a ice rink with extra fun fun fun activities for all the family to enjoy, cheaper property, good access, friendly natives...... I mean like The Only Way Is Essex right? And 'Oh I love the geezers! It's all about the geezers innit?' (What? You've not been watching my favourite telly programme? You're ah' of orda!) Yeah Essex ticked all the right boxes but........ Nooooooooooooo!!!!!!!! Sumink's just not right. I got my tribe man innit dahn 'ere like. But we need a new cave!!!!!

It must be Mr RB's inner Nomad showing his face. He's got a new book he has: Warriors, Nomads & Settlers - Discovering Who We Are & What We Can Be. He did the test on me - albeit at a rather stressful time when I was trying to get 4 hopeless hooligans ready and out the door one morning for a dayful of antics. He's asking me double-edged questions while I'm shaking a small boy into his trousers with one hand, filling 5 water bottles with the other, sourcing particular tracksuit bottoms with the left eye, x-ray spotting a missing trainer with the other and zipping up my boots with kinetic mind control. 'How determined/dogmatic are you?' 'What? Dunno. Say 3. Under the settee, have any of you cleaned your teeth, no it's probably in the machine, have you found your library books yet?' 'How adaptable/indecisive can you be?' 'Oh I dunno, where you bloody left them, about a 6 or 7 maybe, well we'll just renew them then, no 8. 9!!' How inspiring/over-dramatic-' 'Get out of my oxygen, you look lovely, mop that up, stop pinching, get in the car, dogmatic? Look I'm not a bloody octopus!' 'Why don't you ever answer a direct question? You just can't be honest can you!' 'What did you bloody say?' 'You're not concentrating. I answered all these questions straight away' 'It's not about speed I'm THINKING!!!' 'You're just trying to get round it but you have to just be honest.' 'I AM TRYING to be honest not just say the first thing like you do and then pretend I'm all cool and sharp when you're just a fly-be-night shallow reactionary who changes his mind after every different conversation' 'God you're so negative!' 'No I'm not!' 'Just answer the damn question.' 'What was the bloody question?' 'How argumentative can you be?' '2!' Anyway I came out as a Settler which I fumed about the whole the auto-pilot drive to gymnastics, while I negotiated my usual parking space, as I ushered the urchins into the gym and rearranged their spewed socks and shoes into orderly stacks, nestled into one of the 3 comfy perches and got out me knitting. Oh yeah I AM a Settler aren't I? Obviously I quickly realised that the Settlers are by far the superior personality type. We are the engaging, flexible, compassionate, artistic ones. We won't just bugger off or twat you if you disagree with us. (Oh no - we're way cleverer than that!) Anyway, I'm not keen on the Essex idea alright?

And then today we have the landlord's agents round to sneek a peek at the ruins of a once fine building we have joyfully trashed, and instead of having us arrested, they offer us the soon-to-be-vacated larger farmhouse 800 yards up the road.

W T F ? ? ? ! ! !

The day before Panic Day a house indeed falls into our lap. So why am I saying NO NO NO NO NO!!!! Huh?

Mr RB is jitterbugging with joy. Essex is forgotten. He likes it round here! But then he's not the one driving an hour and a half to the bleedin' ice rink, and an hour and a half back, twice a week. And 45 mins to our hall/swimming/psycho play centre meets..... Half an hour to our gym/museum/drama/parks..... Half an hour in the opposite direction to the other gym/football/other football........ 45 mins to the nearest friend.... Like every bleedin' day. (It's an hour to the nearest family member which is not disastrous in itself but babysitting would be a tad easier if we were a teensy bit closer......) And a spot in our 'magic triangle' would seriously cut down on time and diesel, for most of the list anyway. And would also reduce my ritual subjection to Now 77 Disc Two on endless loop. I mean come on!!!

The house up the road is apparently bigger, nicer, one bedroom short but with an office and a conservatory (like wassat?). But we would still have to actually MOVE stuff. I think Mr RB imagines rounding up a couple of burly nephews, piling settees and mattresses onto a skateboard and skipping along the leafy track with a bluebird on his shoulder.

But it is a house. And tomorrow is Panic Day. It's a bloody HOUSE - for US! And I'm STILL complaining!!!!

Time for a reality check. Or should that be a realty check? Is I being a spoilt brat or is I got a flyable point? I just don't know my own mind anymore..... Adaptable/indecisive??? Bloody confused.

OK - pros and cons:

We would lose - a minute per trip and a bedroom.

We would gain - a roof over our heads.

Written like that it looks a fairly simple matter doesn't it?

Doesn't it???

* * * * * * * * * * * * * *

All this talk of ideal homes....... Reminds me of another gem from my best telly prog: Mark and Lauren are moving in together (yeah right....)

M: What do you want a table for? Nah I wanna keep my flat as it is. Like boisterous.
L: Boisterous? Nah it's depressin'. It's like a broffel's house. It needs a woman's touch.
M: Ughh it'll look like a bloody doll's house in a week wiv yer pink barfroom and and.... dining room table!
L: Yeah wait 'til I start wiv the flowers.... and pictures...

What would he think of my shelfful of bonkers horned-obsessed pottery or our photos of paint-smeared odd-shoed naked monkeys? I utterly must invite them round!

* * * * * * * * * * *

Woke up the next morning to the sound of 'There's a great place in Deal. 5 bedrooms, by the sea, and right near some of the best golf courses in England.'

Pretended to still be asleep.

Wednesday, 30 March 2011

Middle-age Grumpage

Everyone with delightful elder daughters I've asked for help so far have pulled that face (the 'don't-make-me-go-back-there!!!-face'), offered up a dish of horror stories and then kindly added 'but they come through it'. HOW MANY YEARS? HOW MANY YEARS DOES IT TAKE??? When will I be all wise and calm and philosophical???

I'm not known for my patience. When I discovered I was pregnant with Bump Number 2 I was quite furious that I had to do the whole 9 months thing. 'But I've done it before! Why can't I just pop it out now and start from there???'

'But they come through it.'

I'm really not sure I did. And that is the problem.

Skipped from teenage mutant non-speaking shirker straight to middle-age deviant shrieking berserker. I even screamed the f word at the 2 small boys today in MY MUM'S HOUSE. THAT'S how grown-up I am. Mind you I did believe that one was ripping the leg off the other with the push-button reclining mechanism of a demon armchair. Thuglet was wedged behind it trying to retrieve a hurled shoe screaming like a Tudor heretic on the rack while big bruv was blankly cruising the controls and completely ignoring all sources of yelling. I thought a couple of high decibel fucks were most definitely in order. When the phone rang later this evening I knew it was my mum checking that I hadn't driven them off Beachy Head.

It was well past time to go. Much Lego to retrieve and we were still missing 2 magnetic bees and the special self-sealing bag they live in and one mini Mini. AND I still had the doorstep challenge to endure - like the old Crackerjack ending I wobble hopelessly with bagfuls of books and DVDs and wrapped up sausages and French sticks trying to make a bolt for it before another cupboard door opens. Then I spiked up further in the car when I realised that mum hadn't changed the little carriage clock on the shelf so I wouldn't be getting home 'til 8.00pm instead of 7.00pm and I still had 5 beds to make thanks to the reappearance of the nitty noras. Sigh.... Tossed in a few more sulky fucks for the road.

Poor Minx doesn't really stand a chance does she?

Saturday, 26 March 2011

Teenage Rampage

I need help.

I've always joked that she was born a teenager - but now.......

Mr Roving Blade thinks we should come down hard on her unacceptable behaviour. That seems like fighting fire with fire. Never understood that phrase actually. But it's a bus stop along from smacking a small kid for smacking another kid.... 'Don't do what you just did and to show you not to do it I'll do it.' Er...... When it's mental teenage horrificness - are we really only able to be horrific back? What does this gain? Headaches and doors off hinges.

I've had enough already. She's always been volcanic but the last 3 days have been unbearable - and she's still 11. And it's just Day 3. I've got years of this now. I know I have. I remember it well from my own eruptions. Just shoot me now.

I'm remembering the small grey silent stone child that I used to deposit at school and the brittle grey stone bitching harpie I used to pick up. She turned quite human for the last few years. And now.... now I have a spitting amazonian spot-riddled obstreperous screeching warrior gorgon dervish beast screaming into my face until her voice cracks.

And I'm the 'understanding' one who sits (at a respectful distance) on the pummelled settee in the middle of the night when she's come downstairs to sob.

When I caringly suggest she needs to get plenty of sleep because she's growing so much at the moment she turns even blotchier and blubs that she doesn't want to grow any more. It is true that most of her friends are tiny. People always think she's older than she is. And she wants to be OLDER than she is. She's always trying to pull away and go off somewhere ELSE. But she doesn't want to grow any BIGGER.

It's a crap age. It's crap being a girl at this age. I remember one very lovely lady telling me about some groovy wooomany moony ritually woolly bollocky book that was supposed to be all beautiful and at one with the universey but it's just not gonna cut it in this house. When she first asked me about periods 'n' stuff I told her it was shit. I really did. I did feel a bit guilty and tried to be a little more groovy wooomany etc but I can't keep that nonsense up. I read about some types who do white dresses and grandmothers in circles and no dads or brothers allowed in the big tent and bowls of red flowers and all that hippy shit and I just thought they sounded like wankers. The truth is this age is hell and you cannot pretend it's all wonderful just because you stick a candle in a puddle of tofu. It's just pretend. Your daughters will still hate you.

I'll probably have to go and knock on her door in half an hour or so and see if she's either trashed the joint or is huddled up in a muffled shaking hysteria. Don't know whether to wave a white flag or wear a helmet.

So there it is - I have up to now always managed to find an excuse to wander off when friends start talking about their elder daughters, sticking my fingers in my ears and blalalalalaing until I was safe. But now I need to start probing. Examining. Researching the evidence. Trouble is, I usually find other people's advice to be laughable. Certainly anything to do with child rearing. 99% bullshit. How will I know what's good and what's bogus about the teenage lark? I really don't know if anyone has any answers at all. A bit like the cure for the common cold. Everyone's got their own twaddle to spout but....... hey - right now any twaddle any of you may choose to share would be bigtime welcome!!! I'm desperate!!!!

H * * * E * * * L * * * P * * * !!!!!!!

Friday, 18 March 2011

Smacked Arse

Minx to Me: I'm bored.

Me to Minx: Go and write your book then.

Minx to Me: I've lost it.

Me to Minx: You can't've lost it! I've just blog-bragged about you!!

Minx to Me: Thbleeuuggghhhhhh........

Me to Minx: Bloody kids! No discipline! No pride in one's work!

Minx to Me: What are you doing? Is that chocolate? I thought you said we didn't have any? You're always telling us not to lie!

Me to Minx: Shut up and help me stuff these binliners full of the boys' toys in the back of the car before they see them and if they ask where any of it is tell them you saw the fairies playing with it in the back garden last night and they must've forgotten to bring them back and while you're at it text Daddy that Mummy's wasn't well today and couldn't go shopping so can he do it on the way home and not to expect the kitchen done 'cos I was looking up houses and go and get me another chocolate from the herbal tea box.

Minx to Me: I don't want tooooo...... I'm bored and I'm so tired I need to just lie on the settee for a while. And I'm staaaaaarving.

Me to Minx: Honestly child where DO you get it from!

Tuesday, 8 March 2011


Minx to Me: Can you think of a girl's name beginning with 'H'?

Me to Minx: Whatcha doin'?

Minx to Me: Writing a book.

Me to Minx: Uhh really?

Minx to Me: Yeah shall I read it to you so far?

Me to Minx: Uhhhh OK...

* * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Minx to Me: Whatdya think?

Me to Minx: It's brilliant. But like how come you just go and like DO it and it's like BRILLIANT and I'm supposed to be the one making you pick up a pen on pain of death and like I'm slumped here glarin' at shite on the telly 'cos I'm like too exhausted to move and you just go and bloody DO it and it's BRILLIANT and I'm so crap and you're so fab and I just want to give up on life altogether and be staked out to a tree to feed the crows..... and you just DO it!!!! You couldn't have made me feel more shit about myself if you'd planned it. I'm going to die miserable and leave you nothing to think kindly of. I'm as obselete as a discarded nail clipping. I'm using up your oxygen for no reasonable return. You have hammered the final nail in the coffin of my self-worth. I am futile. I am already a corpse. I am a fetid pustule on the arse of death. I am withered. I am nothing.... Did I say that out loud? Yes it's brilliant darling.

Minx to Me: Well I thought I'd take a break from the film script for a while.

Bloody 'ell!!!!!!!!!

Me to Minx: Shouldn't you be in bed?