Friday, 25 September 2009

The things children put in their mouths

Something worrying has happened to me……yesterday I baked a loaf of bread and a cake. The really worrying thing is that both the cake and the bread were really good – I mean really fucking good. It’s like I was born to bake and never knew it.

In case you were worried that I am turning into one of those domestic goddess types here is proof that I’m still lacking in the Mary Poppins stakes……

Is that chocolate cake round his mouth? No it’s earth from my houseplant.

Here is a list of other things my son recently put in his mouth: two handfuls of dried lavender, a whole orange, a pound coin, my flip flop, his own socks, some thyme, his bath water, a curtain hook, my collar bone.

This morning, after a delicious breakfast of banana and pears he still looked peckish. I gave him a soft and squidgy dried apricot (which he’s rather partial to) but he tossed the apricot aside in favour of some dust, fluff and crumbs that he found in the nook between the washing machine and the cupboard. This is not the worst thing he has eaten.

A few weeks back, in preparation for my return to work, I went clothes shopping with my friend Vivienne Westwood. The idea was that she controlled the baby and gave me her opinion while I tried on work clothes. The boy however; had other ideas. He was unsettled; so I took him into the changing room, placated him and put him on the floor while I squeezed into some navy trousers. But then he started crawling all over the place including under the door of the changing room next to me, so I gave him back to Vivienne and went back to see if I could make it a double trouser purchase (which never happens to me). Minutes later I returned triumphant, with two pairs of trousers. Vivienne Westwood, on the other hand, looked worried.

“He’s got something in his mouth.” she said.

I prised his jaws apart, his mouth overflowed with dribble and out plopped……a plaster…

We both screwed up our faces at the possibilities. What could be contained within that plaster? My son simply giggled and gave a toothy grin.

“It’s most probably from someone’s foot.” I said

The moral of this story is that children are as resilient as they are audacious. My son did not die of foot poisoning as I feared he might and I recall that my sister once stuck her finger up a Rottweiler’s arse and lived to tell the tale.

Friday, 18 September 2009

Mother Guilt in the shape of an Iggle Piggle birthday cake

So, if I made it sound like my friend Buttercup was just a little bit pissed off at being back at work that was an understatement. When she called me a few days back she was all apologies….

“I’m so sorry. I’ve been such a bad friend. I had no idea what you were going through when you went back to work.”

I keep telling her there’s no need to apologise. A couple of weeks on and just as those bastards predicted, I have adjusted. I no longer feel so enraged. It’s still undeniably shit, the familiar stress knot in my neck has returned, but you are less likely to be knifed by me at work than a few weeks ago, which should come as a relief to my colleagues.

Buttercup however; is still on week one. Week one is when you start thinking about how quickly you can get pregnant again and go back on Maternity leave. Naturally there have been tears; the flow of which have only been stemmed by the flow of red wine. Let me leave you in no doubt that Buttercup is feeling well and truly shredded by her new life.

As for the rest of them, where as I have just flown into town everybody else seems to be leaving on a jet plane. Cupcake is hitting Ibiza for a long weekend with tits the size and texture of boulders, having only stopped breastfeeding two days ago, while Victoria Sponge is flying to the Caribbean so that her husband can be best man at my despicable ex-boyfriend’s wedding. Enough said.

Meanwhile, my son’s 1st birthday is looming……

I’m fairly sure I’m supposed to be doing memorable and remarkable things for the occasion but I haven’t a clue what these are? Should I be baking a cake?

Buttercup’s son just turned one last week and I’ve seen pictures of the cake she made which looked pretty impressive to me, despite her damning opinion of it.

We were on the phone - Buttercup on her third glass of red wine (home measures not pub measures) and I asked her:

“Is this cake baking thing something I should be doing?” to which she replied

“Just buy one. I only did it to ease my guilty conscience because I had to send my son to Nursery.”

So, if you’ve never seen mother guilt before – this is what it looks like.

Saturday, 12 September 2009

P.S Did I mention work was shit?

Having finished my ‘This is it’ World Tour (named so because if I was a 50 something man with a prescription drugs problem I would never have finished it…..) that is to say: New York-Connecticut-NewYork-Florida-Jamaica-Florida-London …..

Yes really …..

Did you notice my absence?.....

Anyway, having finished my world tour which I refused to describe as a holiday......more like one long Sunday visiting relatives. ….

So, having finished my world tour I returned to Blighty; the sun was shining but it felt cold to me. I have no tan and cannot be bothered to explain this to anybody who doesn’t understand.

So, the first email in my inbox is from the delightful Buttercup who has returned to work. I daren’t tell her that it gets easier because although it is true, it is the last thing a woman wants to hear as she returns to the clutches of the devil.

I have offloaded my son to his grandparents who are in a state of desperation having been deprived of his presence for over two weeks, and soaked my self in the mire that is London.

Two bottles of Pinot Grigio Blush, a North London shish kebab, a packet of peanut M&M’s, and I feel like myself again.

Thank fuck for that. I could never be an American, unless I was New Yorker.....