Tag Archives: Notes From The Trenches

Notes from the Trenches: 9

Instagram looks like this. My text messages do not.

One of my favourite things about these Notes from the Trenches posts – aside from the fact that I think a good bit of unfiltered honesty makes all of us feel a little less insane – is that when I look through my last six months of frantic text messages, I can see how much we’ve changed. Every half-year seems to come with its own theme, and it’s rarely the same as the last one. Does this mean there will come a day where I’m not texting Tim about unbridled public faeces disasters? Oh, I live in hope.

This last six months I have mostly learned: that my tolerance for three-year-old tantrums or five-year-old stubbornness when combined with pregnancy is at the sort of miniscule level not much higher than, um, zero. And that our pitched battles over the heating will last until one of us dies (then I will keep turning it up from beyond the grave, cackling).

Look, see: your normal is normal too.

 

24 June

[It’s the day of the Brexit referendum result: I have cried all morning, and run off to the woods to avoid humanity. Then this.]
A good day all round. T also got dipped in. The bike fell over with him in it.

 

16 July

Danger of taking boys to Sports Day:

‘Look, that fat man in the grey is going to lose’.

‘SHE’S really slow. Go faster lady!’




8 August

H: I don’t want a bath today.

Me: you have to, you’re dirty

[disappears for fifteen minutes; reappears naked]

H: Mummy, I accidentally wiped myself all over with wipes so now I’m clean.

(Accidentally?)

 

31 August

How was your day? IKEA go ok?

I think you mean ‘your-KEA’, according to T.

 

9 September

‘No, it’s not screen time. That’s later.’

‘AH. I  GONNA PUNCH EVERYSING.’

(5 mins later)

‘Mummy, come hang out wiz me while I poo’.

Emotional hurricane.

 

5 October

Another poo in pants morning – in Holland and Barrett, no spare pants, toilets a 10-min walk away [horror face].

We managed to get there and I remembered I’d just bought some face wipes. So he got cleaned up with tea tree oil (!) and went pantsless (and, presumably, slightly stinging) to the car. Unpleasant.

 

6 October

YES HEATING NAZI IT WAS TIME

 – Retribution: 

Right, just for that I’m stapling the spare duvet to ours so that you overheat to death at night.

 

22nd October

[On the way home from a funeral]

Right, done and dusted. 

WHOA, sorry, unfortunate idiom to use on the way to the crematorium! Pretend I didn’t say that. 

 

25th October

We got out after all (they played nicely for an hour then tried to kill each other with colanders. Fresh air it was).

 

2nd November

T has caught our putrid throat. He kept waking up and crying, and wasn’t awake enough to tell me why (in the end his coughing tipped me off). Eventually he woke up more and I said ‘T, what’s the matter?’ He screwed up his little red face and croaked ‘Things…just DON’T GO WIGHT’. How existential.

 

6 November

I’m getting an early night.

[40 mins later]

THE CROWN IS SO GOOD I AM CRYING

– Thought you were getting an early night? 🙂

I only watched one. I’m about to turn in and feel sad about George VI’s lung cancer and excellent kingmanship.

 

9 November

PS, I solved the mystery of the magic decreasing heating.

 

11 November

I forgot to tell you: that thing that has been inevitable since September happened yesterday, when I apparently sent T to nursery wearing one of his shoes and one of H’s.

 

15 November

Exiting Tesco.

Pull up next to the car and notice a weird white stain on the door. Where did that come from, I think. I lick my finger and see if it comes off. No joy. I click the unlock button and nothing happens.

THEN I REALISE IT’S AN IDENTICAL MAZDA TWO SPACES AWAY FROM MY CAR, TO WHICH I JUST APPLIED MY SPITTLE.

 

17 November

Phantom Menace, and T sees Jar Jar Binks.

‘Um, is he a dinosaur? Or a frog?’

Unfortunately I haven’t got a clue what’s going on so I can’t answer their m a n y questions.

– Simple – he’s an alien!

Oh, well I knew that one. It’s my ‘someone’s attacking that planet for some reasons and these magic Jedis are involved because more reasons’ bits that are lacking somewhat.

 

20 November

T’s poo arrived. In two parts. In his pyjamas.

I only saw/evacuated one part, and stepped backwards onto the large, squishy other.

Thank you, washable bath mats.

 

26 November

Do I Need The Loo Or Am I Being Kicked In The Anus From The Inside: The Pregnancy Story

 

2nd December

THIS IS THE WORST ONE BY FAR:

T: where’s your special willy?

Me: my what

T: your special willy

Me: it’s called a vagina, remember?

T: [puts head down on my lap] I can’t hear it

Me: yeah, no, they don’t sing or anything

T: they don’t?!

– You guys talk too much about private parts…

If he asks, I have to tell him the truth! Even though it makes me do a full-body cringe. 

 

7th December

I just want you to know I came thiiiis close to McDonald’s this lunchtime, but heroically refrained.

– Lunch? It’s only 11.30am!

Yeah, that’s when we have lunch. I’m hungry all the time; it makes no odds to me.

 

17th December

Nice relaxing bath (eyeroll).

Yes, they’re both sat on a stool right next to me, having carefully moved my phone and book somewhere else, and are telling me about their favourite Pokemon/poking my giant belly. Just sign me up for a Lush advert, eh?

Previous Notes from the Trenches are here. I’ve been sending screechy pixels through the air since H was tiny. Well, you have to. Why should Tim miss out on all the fun? 

Notes from the Trenches: 8

Photo 29-02-2016, 10 10 57 am (800x798)

Do you know what? My Instagram lies.

Well, not totally, not properly…the same way Facebook isn’t properly evading corporation tax and I didn’t entirely eat an jumbo-bag of Mini Eggs whilst gawping at Tom Hiddlestone on the TV last night. It’s just that my Instagram feed shows our best bits, and when it includes our worst bits it’s just the picturesque ones with a nice filter. That’s what Instagram does, and it’s good at it.

If it’s behind-the-scenes madness you’re after – the blood, the tears, the endless, endless bodily waste – you need my daily ranting text messages to Tim. Ever wondered if your normal was actually normal? Read on, and don’t mind me weeping.

 

30 September

In the five minutes it took to hang up some wet clothes, Teddy has a) got a chair and climbed onto it, b) emptied an entire packet of Ritz crackers onto the hob, and c) crumbled some cheese into the water bottle, I mean WHAT.
I’m actually quite impressed at how much cheese he managed to get into that bottle!
I KNOW.

Photo 17-09-2015, 1 22 15 pm (800x639)

 

1 October

YOU KNOW THAT WALLPAPER

IT’S ON SALE AGAIN.

IMAGINE THIS ON THE FAR WALL.

JUST IMAGINE.

I’m now imagining you shouting ‘JUST IMAGINE’ at me…

You love it when I forcibly demand that you imagine things

 

10 October

I cannot tell Twitter this because I am deeply ashamed; I can only tell you. I just absentmindedly tried to scroll this book with my finger. Now I need to go CHOP ALL MY FINGERS OFF.

 

12 October

Made tomato soup and a crumpet for T’s lunch. Immediately he pours his glass of water into the soup, making it inedible. And refuses the crumpet, even once I put jam on it.

And so, naptime.

Photo 10-11-2015, 9 46 09 am (800x800)

 

28 October

[Getting Cursed Child tickets]

OMGOSH two minutes till it opens! I don’t know how you do eBay all the time – I am freaking out

Aaaaargh

50 seconds so poised so ready

Ok there’s a random queue and I’m number 6902. Wut.

I am going to stare at it until the time passes.

I don’t know what on earth you get to do with a £100 ticket. Like, lick Harry Potter’s face?

 

29 October

Literally thirty seconds after we’ve struggled into our seats at the cinema, having persuaded Teddy to climb the stairs and come sit down when he cannot tear his eyes away from the screen and my hands are full so I can’t grab him, but we get there eventually and get settled with popcorn trays on laps…

‘I need a wee.’

OF COURSE YOU DO. OF. COURSE. YOU. DO.

 

5 November

PS, Ted just bit his tongue, and wanted me to fix it in the usual way: a rub and a kiss. I did the rub reluctantly but I have to draw the line at kissing his tongue.

Photo 21-01-2016, 3 40 57 pm (800x800)

 

19 November

There is no fury like that of a mother who ALMOST got a nap until the blasted postman rang the doorbell twice. Awake, angry, tired toddler. No sleep for anyone. OUTER DARKNESS. OUTER DARKNESS FOR THIS MAN.

 

4 December

Ted is singing Happy Birthday to his jumper. Festive.

***

The ‘we need to stop at Sainsbury’s quickly before lunch’ plan went terribly wrong. He’s sparko, I’m sat in the car park starving to death. WHAT NOW.

Resist the temptation to Drive-Thru!

HOW DID YOU KNOW I WAS RESISTING THAT TEMPTATION WITH ALL OF MY CELLS SIMULTANEOUSLY

I AM SO HUNGRY AND SOMEONE WOULD POST CHIPS THROUGH MY WINDOW IF I ASKED

***

I bought Ted a fish biscuit from Sainsbury’s bakery. Home now, and he’s just eaten the icing eye…and is now freaking out because the fish is blind.

This is a morally conflicted situation.

Update: He has overcome his scruples.

 

29 December

When ur about to captain the Victory to defeat Napoleon and ur getting so pumped

Picture1 (800x640)

 

13 January

H: T hit me!

Me: T, did you hit H?

T: Thomas is a…a big bad naughty engine

Me: Is he? What’s that got to do with you hitting H?

T: Thomas hit H in the head.

Quick thinker slash diabolical genius.

Photo 15-12-2015, 3 07 23 pm (800x800)

 

15 January

H: Who are we going to visit?

Me: A nice old lady called Ma.

H: Ma? Isn’t that a planet where all the aliens live?

Me: What? Oh. No, that’s Mars.

H: Oh right.

Photo 22-11-2015, 11 11 48 am (800x800)

 

11 February

That moment when you realise your 2YO freakishly knows all the words to Life on Mars.

‘Take a look at the –’

‘Laaaw mayn waitin’ dela wong guy’

 

15 February

[Just after my gum operation]

Twice yesterday T said ‘I smell your mouth’. And not like it was a good thing. 

 

7 March

So I changed T’s disgusting diarrhoea nappy while you were there, right?

Ten minutes after you left:

‘Mummy! I did a poo in the bath and it’s weally nasty!’

Ten minutes after that:

‘Mummy! I sat down on the toilet to do a poo and there’s already some in my pants and now it’s on my finger!’

Just as we were about to leave: another dirty nappy from T.

Monday, I rename thee: faeces day. May all who sail in her have joy.

Photo 19-10-2015, 9 11 13 am (798x800)

 

8 March

‘I ate my bowg’

‘Your what?’

‘I ate my – I ate my snotty’

‘Oh, don’t do that – that’s disgusting’.

*emphatic suddenly* ‘NO. THAT’S THE RULE.’

 

9 March

I made a fatal error with that cat poo, by the way.

Cleaned the carpet, then got out the hoover, but wasn’t wearing my glasses.

Hoovered over a ‘leaf’ that turned out to be the original turd.

The ur-turd.

And spread it all over the carpet again *horror face*

 

10 March

What a GREAT NIGHT this has been.

Photo 10-03-2016, 6 18 09 am (800x641)

 

Yes, I was sleeping between them, and T’s feet pretty much reach H’s shoulder in this photo, and it went super well, thanks for HA HA HA.

(Previous Notes from the Trenches are here: one, two, three, four, five, six, seven. It’s so weird how, even under the umbrella of Small Children, your life still changes completely all the time. Wonder where we’ll be in another six months? More vomiting, probably.)

Notes from the trenches: 7

‘You’ll miss this when it’s gone!’ people tell me.

I like to remember this when I’m watching the slow seep of faeces under my fingernails, or engaged in a full-body wrestle with a boy and a supermarket trolley (‘Bend your legs. BEND THEM. BEND. YOUR. LEGS’). Then I do a hollow laugh, likely as not.

Actually, I know they’re right. The brain is a tricky beggar, and airbrushes out the worst bits once enough time has gone by. I’ll forget the number of times I texted Timothy in all-caps or locked myself in the loo for five minutes. I’ll get used to having no stains at all on my trousers around the mid-thigh-snotty-nose level.

That’s why I collect these text messages to the husband in one place, brain. So that I’LL WIN IN THE END.

Here’s my last six months’ worth of notes from the trenches. Weep.

5th March

Teddy is poorly enough for us to have to stay in under a duvet this afternoon. We’re watching Happy Feet. Is it me, or do these penguins react to dancing in a sort of…sexual way? I feel uncomfortable. 

 

20th March

What I really wanted for my birthday was a cowpat cake, so thank goodness we filled that hole.

 

27 March

Just arrived at Tesco. Dentist went about as well as it could, given the adult: child ratio.

Ted is a menace. Dentist is about the loveliest man alive.

They are not in a great mood, so pray for me *horror face*

 

8 April

I swear H actually just said this [while watching The Avengers for the first time]

H: ‘Where’s the Increbibble Hulk?’
Me: ‘He’s that man over there. He hasn’t changed yet.’
H: *sigh* ‘Can someone tell him he needs to be a superhero and not a man in a pink jumper?’

 

16 April

Today was the first time in this kid’s life that I said he had to eat some cheese toastie or he couldn’t have a yoghurt. It went super well.

Photo 12-05-2015 12 49 15 pm (640x800)

 

21 April

H, looking at the completely dried up frog puddle: ‘I can see a few tadpoles…they’re not moving though.’
Me: ‘Mm, perhaps the rest moved to a different puddle?’
H: ‘Yes, or probably they died.’

Real talk.

 

22 April

No one ever told Teddy how to eat an apple and he’s just discovered he loves them, so he’s winging it.

Ate all of it bar the stem.

Photo 22-04-2015 3 39 45 pm (600x800)

28 April

Some Tesco men are all jolly and help you in with your bags. Some Tesco men look like serial killers, and stare from your front door while you laboriously empty a hundred items into your front hall. Guess which one we had today?

 

13 May

So Sainsbury’s keeps their pregnancy tests behind the pharmacy counter. Which only had one waiting person when I first arrived, but they took so blimming long that by the time it was my turn there were seven or eight listening people.

I’m sure I looked well in control of my life asking for a p-test with two shrieking toddlers in the trolley. Wanted to shout ‘IT’S ONLY A MEDICALLY ADVISED PRECAUTION, JUDGERS’, but felt that would go too far.

 

16 May

Ted’s first time on a bus. 

He’s singing a self-penned hello song to the assembled. Defo doesn’t have his brother’s confidence issues.

 

18 May

T: ‘Whezzer apple, Herry?’

H: ‘I threw my apple around the room so many times I can’t have it back.’

#tooright

 

26 May

So far H has wept over

1) the chocolate sauce on his porridge being in his tummy rather than in the bowl, and

2) the blanket being ‘too fluffy’ on his bottom.

It’s a hard old life, eh?

 

28 May

Milkshake meltdown. I never learn.

Photo 28-05-2015 2 35 54 pm (640x800)

[Tim: He’s a junkie. One is never enough.]

 

31 May

I’m in SS. Both boys ok. 

By which I mean Sunday School. I haven’t jollied off to join the Nazi secret police. 

 

13 June

I have never been to Costco before opening time before. Everyone’s queued up at the door with trolleys like it’s an episode of Supermarket Sweep.

THE BULK GOODS WILL STILL BE THERE IN FIVE MINUTES, PEOPLE.

 

18 June

‘Daddy, daddy!’

‘Daddy’s gone for a run’

‘Mummy, mummy!’

‘What is it?’

‘There’s a big fly in the house and I have to gun it!’

*pointed look*

 

30 June

‘MORE FIYER’.

Photo 06-07-2015 9 29 47 am (640x800)

 

18 August

H is listening to a song I have just realised is about sexy times:

‘This song is about NIGHT EXPLOSIONS, Mummy. How curious’.

Um.

 

2 September

Good news! I have just about jogged enough for a single digestive biscuit. Living life. 

 

I told him the Night Explosions song was about fireworks. So help me, I’ve already given him the anatomically correct name for my ladyparts, and I’m not ready for anything else down there yet.

(Previous Notes from the Trenches here, here, here, here, here and here. Is it me, or is my life slowly getting less insane? OMGOSH IS THIS PROGRESS?!)

Notes from the trenches: 6

Every full-time parent of small children needs a place to vent.

Vaguely, you remember a time when you worried about deadlines and MOTs and when to fit in the Tesco shop.

You didn’t very often worry about faeces. Or facial injuries. Or how to get through the witching hour without throwing your children down a mine.

Poor Tim is my venting place. And since he’s busy at work, with those deadlines and MOTs I remember, he gets pelted with text messages on the hour. My last six months looked something like this *weeps forever*:

5 August

Photo 10-03-2015 10 39 11 pm
Yes, somehow I don’t think all parties are enjoying this.

6 August

Henry, while bouncing on bed – ‘ladies and gent-en-den, welcome to bounce day!’

10 August

Listen, I know you’ve been looking for ways to spruce up our bedroom carpet, and I’ve got it: khaki coloured diarrhoea with raisins! Nailed it.

20 August

Henry cried a bit when you left. Just now I heard him sing to himself, all brokenly,

‘This old man/he played one/
He played knick-knack on my TEARS’

I am dying laughing and also have all the feels.

22 August

Teds:

NO to scrambled eggs.

NO to holding my own tube yoghurt.

NO to your vile fruit pot.

NO to your face.

I will accept your suspicious ‘trail mix’ but only the chocolate chips.
Hashtag teeth.

28 August

Hen, from nowhere: ‘A naked man with long arms put a rope around his neck’
Me: ‘What?!?’
H: ‘He put a rope around his neck and couldn’t breathe’ [mimes suffocating]

No more Horrible Histories for this boy, mm-k?

2 September

Look on these works ye mighty, and despair.

Photo 10-03-2015 10 23 57 pm

29 September

Accidentally fell asleep while sorting laundry and had a brilliant nap. Hen downstairs, did the same. Just found him with pants round his ankles (he hadn’t bothered to pull them up after his wee), lying on the floor, using the iPad as a very uncomfy pillow.

[Note: Tim’s response to this was ‘#penisstylus’, which made me laugh so hard I snorted my cheesecake.]

7 October

Meanwhile Teds is giving himself a jacket potato body scrub *cries*

9 October

Teddy vs slide (horror face).

Photo 10-03-2015 10 24 56 pm
He is EXTREMELY lucky it missed his eye. Also he is rubbish at first aid.

‘RAISINS YES COLD COMPRESS NO’.

30 October

Had a whole dream last night about the advisability of buying a tartan cushion for the living room. Exciting life, you are mine indeed.

18 November

‘MUMMY, TEDDY’S GOT MY HAIRY BALL’.
Leaving that one alone. Well. Alone.

24 November

A Short Scene From Our Evening:

An hour ago I was changing Teddy’s dirty nappy – he is still producing some abominations. Suddenly Hen dashes past me yelling ‘I NEED A POO, QUICK QUICK!’

I spot the potty just behind me and fling it out into the corridor for him, he starts pulling his shorts down, I glance over…and an entire turd is so close to falling off it’s dangling by a thread. He’s not managed to sit down yet.

So I THROW myself across and manage to move the potty two inches to the left – and catch it, yesss! Alas, not the after-poo, which hits the carpet. So I quickly get wipes to clear everything up, eventually turn back – and find Teddy waving his dirty nappy around like the Union Jack.

And in all this flinging, I pulled a stomach muscle.

END SCENE.

4th December

Photo 10-03-2015 10 38 14 pm
That’s Hen’s toothbrush, and he couldn’t get his hand out while holding it, but wouldn’t let it go.

[Tim]: Ah, the satisfaction of knowing that your child has progressed in intelligence to the level of a baboon.

5th December

We just came back in from a walk, wet and muddy. Did the usual strip-down and sent Henry upstairs to find pyjama bottoms. He came down wearing some.

‘Oh well done, you did that fantastically’.

‘Yes mummy. Now let’s get the kettle on and have some chocolate’.

7 December

Photo 10-03-2015 10 25 58 pm

‘Oi!’

‘You must not say oi! I dust eating the chocolate!’

16 December

Today Hen has done: 

1 wee in our front garden
2 wees in the toilet/potty
1 wee mostly in pants
1 wee on his bedroom floor
1 poo in the woods
1 poo on the bathroom floor.

A great day.

18 December

There is an Indian fast food place down by Riverside advertising ‘curry in a naan’, like to take away. WHAT. This has the potential to change my whole life for the better.

The naan is bowl shaped, like a taco. My mind is blown.

Also, much more disgustingly, Pizza Hut now do alcoholic milkshakes – ‘hard shakes from hard cows’. This emoji represents me vomiting in my mouth.

6th January

1. Spoon up custard and peach.
2. Chew.
3. Remove peach and put it in a separate container you have commandeered for the purpose.
4. Repeat.

Photo 10-03-2015 10 39 39 pm

2 February

Henry: ‘I am very freezing. It’s time to go in a nice warm café and sit down’ #middleclasschildren

21 February

[Tim]: Teddy has had a rough couple of hours.

Photo 10-03-2015 10 43 37 pm
[Me]: Haaa. I know that feel, bro. Fist bump.

If you ever think I look like I’m about to skin a cat when you get in from work, that’s why.

Be right back, just running towards that curry-in-a-naan with my arms and mouth wide open, because it’s 10am, we had breakfast four hours ago, and I CAN’T EVEN.

Older Notes from the Trenches posts are here (tiny Henry!), here, here, here and here. It’s good to know that basically my life has been continuously insane for the last three years. 

Notes from the trenches: 5

I love reading these ‘Twenty-Six Text Messages You Must See Before You Die’ listicles. And one of the reasons I love them is that they’re proof that people actually send normal text messages to their friends and significant others. They organise social events and discuss dinner. They flirt. They do not, as a general rule, give an hourly account of the bodily waste they’ve come up against lately.

You know whose text messages do? Mine. Poor Tim. AND POOR ME, READERS. POOR ME.

(Just kidding. I laughed my little head off reading this evidence of my strange, frantic, toddler-driven life, and I think I’ll laugh more once this phase is done.)

10 April

Wee in library toilet! *thumbs up*
Poo in library pants! *thumbs down*

It’s like Gladiator, but with faeces.

30 April

So Hen found your Reece’s lip balm and has been sneakily licking it all morning. I’ve been saying ‘DON’T lick daddy’s lip balm!’ a lot.

Just now I asked him what he was doing, and he said what sounded like ‘I licking daddy’s bum’. Let’s hope that one doesn’t go public.

9 May

I forrealz just cooked a tea towel along with my chips.

14 May

Me: ‘I need to get ready, Henry. You’ll have to wait till Daddy gets home to ask him.’
[Henry presses the iPad button for Siri.]
Henry: ‘HELLO. HELLO. I NEED TO SPEAK TO TIMOTHY.’

15 May

From the bedroom, quite distinctly: ‘oh, CWAP’. Whoops.

13 June

Talking to Hen about senses.
‘What do we use for listening?’
‘Headphones.’
‘No, ears. Ears are for listening. What’s your nose for?’
‘Teddy pressing.’
‘Smelling, actually. What do we use for looking?’
‘The iPad.’
‘Your eyes. What are your feet for?’
‘Shoes and socks.’

New concepts 🙂

17 June

Even in a fictional Game of Thrones universe generated by a computer algorithm, I am not cool.

21 June

Just poked my head around the door and saw Henry dragging Teds down the stairs by the foot. So I dropped my phone on our hard floor and ran.
Downside: poor phone. It’s ok, but it was lucky.
Upside: definitive proof that I love my children more than my phone.

23 June

Photo 31-07-2014 10 53 26 pm

I’m now letting him eat from my Muller Corner using his hands. Hashtag desperation.

26 June

From nowhere, today: ‘Hey mama, bees don’t have willies’ –?!

30 June

Forgot to tell you Teds pulled the ladder down on top of himself this morning – and it was by the stairs, so he fell backwards DOWN THE STAIRS with the ladder on top of him. Heart attack city.

Yikes. Is he ok?

Amazingly, yes. Hard as nails, this boy.

2 July

Just banged my head on the corner of the car boot so hard I am literally strapping the boys in with tears streaming down my face.

Why can’t I just be a suffragette and have Mary Poppins be brilliant with my children?

5 July

Photo 31-07-2014 10 52 53 pm

This guy woke up at 5.45am: bought 20 more mins with a bottle, and 20 more with him trashing our room.

He’s just got to Only Sitting On Your Face Will Please Me stage.

16 July

Photo 31-07-2014 10 54 09 pm

‘Do a wee, ball! Time for you to do a wee!’

[puts on deep voice for ball] ‘No wees coming, thank you.’

17 July

Photo 31-07-2014 10 53 34 pm

He made it to the top. *horror face*

– He is his brother’s brother.

19 July (6pm, FYI)

I’m coming home! Via Tesco.

– How soon is too soon to put Teddy to bed? He seems like he’s nearing the end of his tether.

-You are a wonder woman.

– In case you didn’t know.

23 July

Photo 31-07-2014 10 54 44 pm

Found an empty bottle, pulled down your shirt, got himself settled.

24 July

‘Whass Teddy doin’?’
‘I don’t know, what is he doing?’
‘I sink he’s pretending to be a sea cow.’

30 July

‘Where on earth did that water come from?’ I said, watching Teddy splash in a puddle on the floor. ‘Seriously, there are no bottles nearby…and it’s not sick…’

Wee. He’d made a splash-pad out of his own wee.

From now on I will only be accepting emails addressed to ‘Rachel The Virgin Jeffcoat, Mother of Winter’, in case you were wondering why yours keep bouncing.

(You can see previous Notes from the Trenches here, here, here and here – and the quote formatting with this blog style is pretty gross, but I don’t have time to fix it now, so let’s all just agree to not mind.)

Notes from the trenches: 4

Parenting lesson #45: keep your working spouse in the loop by bombarding them continually with panic-strewn text messages.

I’m getting pretty good at it, if I do say so myself.

8 May

HENRY FOR CHEFF’S SAKE, GO TO SLEEP.

I am writing this to you, so I don’t have to say it to him.

12 May

Supposed to be asleep.
Actually singing a self-penned song about tickling digger.
Story of Henry’s life.

17 July

Let us rename today Giant Sweetcorny Poos In The Bath day. A step forward though: he stood up in a corner and yelled for me because he didn’t want to stand in it. Considering its composition I’m glad he wasn’t trying to eat it…

18 July

Someone was jealous of Edward’s bath this morning. He got in with his nappy on. Urgh.

30th July

Brill! I’ll give you three guesses as to what I’m doing.

– feeding?

A clue: I am _____ surrounded by _______ while Henry ______.
The answers are ‘feeding’, ‘mess’, and ‘paints on the wall with Maybelline foundation’.

1st Aug

I think I might die of having two children.

7th Aug

By the way, I am watching a history documentary about succession. The next time we have marital relations I expect you to shout ‘Now I will do my work, for St George and England!’ As did Charles II.

8th Aug

We are both sick and covered in wee (Teddy’s), and he has decided he will only stop crying when he’s sat with me.

Meanwhile, Hen is singing Postman Pat and ‘cleaning’ where I can’t see him. Ominous.

We miss your face, in other words.

9th Aug

Ok, how toxic do you think your hair cream is, on a scale of one to ten?!

27th Aug

This is the greatest weighing session of all time. Put Teds on the scales and he wees everywhere. Unfortunately the scales are on a table and Hen is standing beside me, so he gets wee to the face. We scrabble to clear it up, Teds gets weighed…and then wees again. In Henry’s face, again. He looked so disgusted, I was in hysterics. I was the only one amused…

28 Aug

This will make me sound like a dweeb, but I can’t open the Calpol, and Teds is desperate. Pls could you and your man hands come home?

3rd Sept

DO YOU KNOW HOW MANY CALORIES ARE IN MCDONALD’S?!
Nando’s is WeightWatchers in comparison.

17 Sept

‘Mummy, Eh-ward’s awake!’

‘Yeah, he’s awake because you spat on his head.’

Poor Teds.

10 Oct

Definitely trying to put a breast pad in. This boy needs man time in the worst way.

photo (4)

‘Mummy, I a pah-rit! Ha-haaargg!’

Antibacterial handwipe. Pirate hat. What’s the diff.

photo (5)

It has just occurred to me: do you think one day Edward will use these posts as evidence for his parental emancipation bid?

*makes mental note to burn the internet later*

Notes from the trenches: 3

My frantic text messages to Timothy these days are a little more to do with impending injury and a little less to do with bodily fluids. Which is…nice, I suppose?

Still feel bad about that assaulted goat. If you’re reading this, Perky, I hope you can sleep at night.

11 Jan

So, you know that plastic ducky Henry has adopted, and how it’s not really supposed to be a bath toy, and has a hole on its underside? You can squirt water out of it, and it looks disturbingly like it’s peeing. Well, today Henry worked out that it was quite easy to get the squirty water into his mouth, and started sucking from the source. THIS IS WRONG.

– At least he can have a career as a duck milker.

Ew.

14 Jan

He has just pulled his towel into the bath, and is drinking from it. He thinks that when I tell you about this, you will say ‘POW’. Please try to be more stern than that.

11 Feb

In the wake of the Baftas, I think you should grow a beard. That is all.

15 Feb

Ok, for future reference: the station car park is REALLY VERY FAR INDEED from Argos. Like, a ten minute walk even without Henry picking up every cigarette butt.

22 Feb

What an astonishingly good morning for Henry to catastrophically butt-explode in the bath. It is fish and tomato poo, just to make it nicer.

27 Feb

Wish you could’ve heard him just now telling me which bit of James Bond I missed: ‘mama ohhhh choo choo uh-oh’ (the train came through the wall).

5 Mar

Henry decided he wanted a piggy back this afternoon. From a goat.

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8 Mar

NOTHING IS BEING DONE.

14 Mar

Milestone: First item deliberately put down the toilet. Urgh.

16 Apr

Henry the freaking genius just melted the bottom of the slow cooker. He’s also broken my computer and drenched the kitchen floor twice, once with hot water [which miraculously missed him, safety fans]. He’s now in his cot so I can not look at him for ten mintues. And the living room looks like this. And I am so tired I could die. Tuesday can naff off.

That’s dirty dishwater he’s drinking in that photo, FYI.

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17 Apr

Milestone: let it be known that at lunchtime today, our son learned how to squeeze out a fart on purpose, for lols. Oh, boys.

Hen in bed, and just started sobbing like he’d chopped off his finger in the cot bars. I ran downstairs. Turns out choo choo had fallen onto the floor. Turns out choo choo has no respect for women who might go into EARLY LABOUR when faced with potential amputations.

I think I’ll (probably) miss this, one day (right?). Assuming I never actually have to deal with an amputation, that is.

Here’s everything you need to know about today. In ten words.

This is a post about Twitter. Since all my blog stuff gets pushed to Twitter automatically, will posting a post about Twitter on Twitter actually make the universe implode? Whatevs: my throat glands are the size of horse dung and I can’t feel my face. If this is the last thing you read, then at least you can be sure it’s a top-quality slice of Pulitzer prize-winning insight. 

Now excuse me, I need to go gargle some salt. 

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I used to hate Twitter.

Like, really, really hate it. My face did this involuntary sneering thing whenever someone mentioned it. ‘Oh, the height of self-involvement’, I thought, grandly. ‘Thinking that someone is interested in what you had for lunch’. I forgot we already had something like that called the Facebook status box, which wasn’t Twitter’s fault. Also that, quite a lot of the time, I enjoy talking about lunch.

I also enjoy the challenge of summing up a day in 140 characters or fewer. It’s like one of those line-a-day journals I keep thinking I’ll buy, and never do. Sometimes I have to remove spaces between words to make them all fit, which makes me sad inside, but mostly I enjoy the excuse for a thesaurus. I just don’t get enough quality time with a good thesaurus, these days. Thanks for the memories, T-dawg.

The other week I posted my 1000th tweet. It was an unflattering up-the-nose self-portrait from Instagram, if you must know. But out of curiosity I started looking back at my previous updates. And they pretty much told me all I needed to know about the day I posted them. I mention this just in passing, but there are twenty tweets here, and I talk about food in nine of them. I really do enjoy talking about lunch. 

10 Sept

Nothing sadder than watching the Domino’s man pull into the drive…and deliver next door. Thought he was following a prompting.

24 Sept

Just got 3/4 through making lunch before I looked at the time. 11am. OH MONDAY YOU MOCK ME WITH YOUR ENDLESSNESS. #cakequestionmark

18 Oct

I am going to write a song about hipster lifestyle bloggers, called ‘She Keeps Her Ketchup in a Mason Jar’. Suggestions welcome for 2nd line.

19 Oct

Sometimes I imagine Joseph Fiennes as inky-fingered Shakespeare actually blowing up the sun with his hotness. Could happen.

21 Oct

Me: Soo, I need to apologise. Tim: For what? Me: When I woke up from that nap, I’d drooled on your head. This is marriage, people. #romance

30 Oct

‘A half-read book is a half-finished love affair’. David Mitchell

5 Nov

Happiness is:waking up and not feeling like death for 1st time in days; realising you have 5 lost lbs to put on and the world is your pizza.

14 Nov

Had a dream that I hung out with some of my favourite bloggers. And I was painfully shy, and they thought I was boring. #humilitydreams

30 Nov

Trying to decide how to hyphenate ‘hardcore country music’. Didn’t know country music came in core strengths. #editorproblems

Gosh. Hardcore country really is hardcore #cocaineandawhore

30 Dec

Have a new tuning app open for my Christmas ukelele. @mrjeffcoat is snoring in the key of G#, in case you were wondering.

15 Jan

Told Henry we were picking up @mrjeffcoat 10mins ago. Since then he’s been repeating ‘daddy, daddy’ in this crazed, omen-style whisper. #um

16 Jan

Whenever I eat a KFC I feel like a small number of my cells voluntarily give up their lives in shame. #andyethereIam

25 Jan

This is the only thing standing between me and that atrocity in the bath.

nooooo

29 Jan

Just paid a £5 library fine. I do and do not want to know how many doughnuts I could’ve bought with that.

30 Jan

1.Bite head off red lipstick. 2.Stand on it. 3.Go for very long walk on cream carpet.<-Henry’s Tuesday. #somemenjustwanttowatchtheworldburn

8 Feb

I am driving back from Tesco. Eating a pork pie. Realise it’s my third in four minutes. Then realise I am LIVING THE LIFE. #umpregnancy?

9 Feb

Toddler saying mystery word over and over. Sounds very much like a swear. Um. Hope he doesn’t remember it in church tomorrow.

10 Feb

In case you wanted to try taking a contact lens out from an eye with no lens in it, let me save you the bother. Don’t. #shorttermmemoryfail

14 Feb

There are times you’ve been tidying this room for 10 frigging years,  and your toddler decides to love every surface with chocolate covered face.

Also pretty sure I ingested that chocolate egg so quickly I ate some of the foil. Ah, Thursday.

21 Feb

Brian Cox is telling me that the larger the animal, the less it has to eat to stay alive. Not true over here, Brian. I defy your physics.

I’m still upset about that lipstick. And now I want a pork pie.

Time for bed? Yes. 

Notes from the trenches: 2

You know when your husband sends you his PayPal login details and tells you to delete the text message once you’ve used it, and then you are distracted by a small boy trying to eat a large battery and remember about it three months later?

Here are some of the other text messages I found while that thing totally, definitely did not at all happen to me.

10 July

H just discovered smoothie. Has a whole new GIVE ME MORE sound he made up especially. He did not even know that fruit comes in liquid (mind blown).

7 Aug

I bought a PD James for £1 in a charity shop today and read it all. Then had to go check the whole house for murderers. You’re welcome.

11 Aug

All I have to say about this morning is: please never die and make me a single parent.

21 Aug

I just cannot buy him a pair of crocs.

29 Aug

Coolio, fit-head. H is pretending to sleep. He has a temperature and is exhausted, but apparently has SONGS TO SING.

3 Sept

Is it too girly to put the cloud and rainbow stickers on Henry’s car?

– Yes. Flames, and go-faster stripes only.

It didn’t come with any. We put the face on though, because the empty eye sockets were creeping me out.

5 Sept

So, Tesco decides which coupons it sends according to what you buy most often.

Our coupons this month are all for chocolate milkshake. Good times.

11 Sept

I am seriously thinking about a bedtime scone to use up the leftover clotted cream.

Had it. Just half. NO REGRETS.

25th Sept

Another Houdini poop morning here. Joy. I think I found it all.

27 Sept

That’s great. I am making dinner…very slowly. While also doing this.

Sadface Henry does not believe in dinner making.

1 Oct

Hey, you!
Did you tell me that I had devil breath this morning, or was that a dream?

He claimed it was a dream, but I have my doubts.

And now, there are approximately 72.5 things on my living room floor (the 0.5 is the bit of pork Henry flicked off his spoon yesterday while practising his Wingardium Leviosa), so it’s time for the Quick-Before-Tim-Gets-Back tidy. Henry is pretending to sleep but actually throttling the life out of his baby monitor. Since the monitor was halfway across the room on his rocking chair, I’m intrigued.

Welcome back, Monday – we hardly missed ye.

Notes from the trenches

I had to search through five months’ worth of text messages to Timothy this morning, looking for some bank account information I’d forgotten.

Henry and I have had an interesting five months.

2nd March:

Kamikaze baby just took a head-first dive off the sofa. I was on the other side of the room and managed to catch him before he hit the ground, but ended up in some very painful splits. Next week I am putting him in one of those inflatable sumo suits, and that will be the end of it.

29 March:

FYI. Henry plus Dyson Air Blade equals Armaggeddon. John Lewis was startled.

11 April:

You know, we always start off breakfast so neat and tidy. And then somehow, by the end, we’re always here.

19 April:

I have fallen out with tantrum boy for the day. I am running away to sea to be a ship’s monkey. We can Skype. They have Skype on ships, right?

30 April:

Put Henry in his room while I took my call, and paid for it with an hour of hysterics. Took me 20 mins to persuade him to sit down long enough for me to use the loo. By which point things were rather desperate.

8 May:

Btw I had a whodunnit dream in which you were the murderer! O the betrayal. You must be extra nice to people today.

11 May:

Guess who just pulled the monitor off the wall, wrapping the wire round his neck as he fell and bringing the picture frame crashing down with it? He’s fine, I am not. UNFUNNY.

15 May:

Got your £5. Had to be very nice to the cashier.

Did winks and everything.

No, not really.

17 May:

Just had the biggest lol of my life feeding H an olive.

20 May:

H just found out that the fridge magnets come off. Caught him eating Richard Hammond’s head.

23 May:

H just did the biggest, mankiest sick all in my hair. I screamed and frightened him so he screamed, and now we both smell. Good times.

27 May:

The batteries in Henry’s walker are running down. She sounds like she’s had hormone therapy and/or too many beers.

29 May:

An astonishing proportion of that rear-ended deluge was raisins. That is all.

5 June:

I had a sad dream about you last night. Try not to catch cancer today!

7 June:

These aren’t scratches from Henry dropping my iPhone, I’ve just realised. These are tooth marks. Dude.

Ha! I love these ridiculous, hair-raising days. I want to trap him as he is so he can’t get any bigger.

I suspect that one day I’ll look back and wish for the simplicity of clearing up sick and keeping him still. For now, we need more disinfectant.

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