I can’t write anything about potty-training you haven’t heard before

I mean, let's be real. I am teaching a small human to direct his waste into a pot instead of in his own clothing. Isn't it weird that this is a skill everyone you know had to learn? And somehow we need to pass it on to our children even though by now we've totally … Continue reading I can’t write anything about potty-training you haven’t heard before

It’s alright, don’t worry: I’m just going through a phase

I'm here! (This is me breaking the log-jam that is two weeks without writing a word, by writing anything. Here's the anything.) Everyone tells you that children go through phases, and from my vast sample size of two, I can tell you that it's true. I mean, I don't know how useful it is to … Continue reading It’s alright, don’t worry: I’m just going through a phase

This Is Where We Are: a letter to my sons on Mother’s Day (5)

Every year on Mother's Day, I write about how I mother my babies day-to-day. I think they might like to know how the little things felt, as well as the big ones. Here goes the fifth (late again - will this become part of the tradition? Yes). Dear Future Versions of Henry and Teddy, This … Continue reading This Is Where We Are: a letter to my sons on Mother’s Day (5)

Five books…to help your kids love words

I'm trying hard to be casually enthusiastic about numbers with H at the moment. I am naturally a words person, and numbers both bore and frighten me. Which isn't so bad for me, because my days of mental maths tests are over. But I do not want to pass it on to them, and my coverage … Continue reading Five books…to help your kids love words

A letter for two

Teddy, Today is your birthday, and you are two. Your day is supposed to be over, actually, but you haven't yet given up the good fight: I can still hear you bouncing and yelling in your room. Most of the street can. You have two volumes: the cracked little fake-sorrowful voice you put on for … Continue reading A letter for two

Boyhood, free-range

Happy almost-Easter! We'll be decamping to parents later on today for Easter weekend. Right now, some family time: we keep forgetting to schedule Tim's work holidays with H's school holidays (because, apparently, with a school-age kid you have to do this?) so this long weekend is the only time we'll have with him. Tim and … Continue reading Boyhood, free-range

Angry mummy

It was 5pm. Of course it was. 5pm is when their tiny resources are shot to pieces, when I'm desperately trying to tidy up and get dinner ready, because half of their bad temper is down to the fact that it's been a long time since lunch. I am busy because they need me to … Continue reading Angry mummy

Expansion

This is a big deal for him. He doesn't like to paint, or make collages, or do anything that means getting his hands dirty. The other children in the class are painting things for him (seriously. Future mob boss?). I worry a little about where he fits, and what his teachers see in him. I … Continue reading Expansion

School jumpers

He loves it. He came out on his first morning, beaming. 'How did you do?' I asked. 'QUITE WEEEELL!' he shouted back, arms in a victory V. I see we are raising a classic British child, who uses 'not bad' to mean 'really good' and 'quite well' to mean 'verily, mother, I have had the … Continue reading School jumpers

If Les Miserables was performed by my one-year-old

The struggle is real.  Look down and see the sweepings of the street and eat them they are ambrosia whatever your mother says Tell Her Reverence your story let us see if she's impressed you were splashing in the toilet you have faeces on your vest At the end of the day you'll eat nothing … Continue reading If Les Miserables was performed by my one-year-old