When it all goes wrong ….

Connor was invited to a birthday party for Friday morning.  I read the SMS invite and my eyes read 10h30.

Friday at 09h45 I rechecked the SMS to realise it said 10h00.

Flew out the house wearing the stuff you pray no one sees you in.  Screeched off down the road.  Traffic on the N1 was bumper-to-bumper at 09h48 on a Friday morning.

I yelled and screamed, but the traffic did not seem to care.

Roared into the parking area, and because it was that kind of  day, there was no parking and I had to park at the furthest possible entrance to the shopping centre.

Ran through the shopping centre with a 12 year old dragged behind me.  Get to location cannot find party people.  Gate holders seem to have no idea about the party – I think okay, I will just pay for him to go in and then he can join the party — I am sure they are inside there somewhere.

Look in wallet.  No money.  F*ck!

Little hamster in head tries to work out best route through maze.  Decide.  Okay leave Connor at the entrance of the party place – hugely stressful to me, as he is now standing alone inside the biggest mall – really regret our earlier decision not to give him a fully charged cell phone.

Yes, that is working out quite nicely now.

I give him firm instructions to remain in this position and only move if he sees the party group.

I run some more to the other side of the center.  Actually I ran first in the incorrect direction, so it did take twice as long.

Find an ATM – stand in queue.  Bouncing on my toes as you do when you are waiting and wondering if at this exact moment your child is being kidnapped by a man in a vest.

Get to ATM – put card in – hand shaking, either not enough caffeine or too much adrenaline, or too much crack for breakfast.

ATM takes card, does not give money, not a slip of paper, or a f*ck you very much.  Just takes the card and then politely asks for “next customer please.”

The issue now is how long to wait for your card to expelled from the machine or to run and see if you can located your child before a man in a vest whisks him away in a red Toyota Tazz.

After 10 minutes and screaming at the ATM.  I decided if I ran really fast I could collect my child and run to the bank to stop my card before it got spat out of the machine into a person who realises I am still using 12345 as my ATM don’t tell anyone PIN number.

Ran to where I left Connor, he was not there.  Mild sh*t attack.  Hopped from foot to foot and eventually saw him at the party – tried to call child’s-mom-whose-party-it was, she was not answering.

Thought okay, calm down, try and take a breath.  Next plan is to run to bank, stop card, and hopefully they can give me an emergency card, as I had no money and no access to any money without an ATM card.

Running to the bank – good plan to save time.

Inside the bank, it appears to run on a different time line altogether.  I

st00d in the line so long the person who walks down the line to ask you in a helpful voice why you are standing in the queue – who seems like a jolly good idea, but the reality is even if you said your pants were on fire they would smile and nod telling you you are in the right queue.

I really wish banks would understand that checking if clients are in the right queue, is not as effective as say opening another teller window and thus shortening the queue.

After just short of two hours I had received an emergency card and been able to cancel the other cards connected to my accounts so the bank could issue new ones.

By the time I got back to the party place, the party had ended  and the kids had wandered off to a fast food outlet.

There was a bit more of me panicking, phoning the phone that does not get answered, and basically have a total humour failure in the middle of a shopping mall.

Eventually found him.

He had had a great time.

Me?  I was bleeding out of my ears from stress.

But then Connor and I went and had McDonalds together and then I felt a bit better.

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{little did I know that this was going to be amateur hour for the shit day it was going to be….}

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Why dads should organise birthday parties …. and moms should sleep on the couch

Connor had his birthday party this weekend.

Kennith has been arranging Connor’s birthday parties since my sh&t fit about four years ago.

I know there are tons of moms who get really excited ab0ut their kid’s birthday parties – it appears I am not one of those moms. I am the mom who gets so stressed and worked up about the birthday party, that I lose my sense of humour at the RSVP stage.

Then it is pretty much all downhill from there.

Any the who, Kennith does the birthday planning for Connor’s birthday party, and I do think at a certain point dads organizing a boy’s birthday is a much better idea.

What Kennith did:

1.  Skipped party packs – each boy got a water bottle and a torch from Cape Union Mart.

2.  Popped down to a local store and picked up a chocolate cake off the shelf.  Me, I would have spent weeks arranging some monster through a specialised cake company and blown the monthly payment for a car on a cake.

3.  He bought hotdogs and rolls, a few packs of chips and cooldrinks.  I would have (over) catered and gone full ball.  Boys ate enough, drank enough and everyone was happy – and it did not take a truck load of food and catering to make them happy.

4.  He organised that Connor invite 9 of his friends and that was it.   I would have invited every cousin, his sister’s friends, the person who once spoke to him at Pick ‘n Pay.  We didn’t  even take the girls with …. and they survived.

5.  He arranged that the boys go to City Rock and do rock climbing.   I was thinking, well that sounds a bit like something the boys are not going to enjoy

6.  Afterwards they came to our house and swam in the pool.   I was thinking, well clearly we need to go bigger here. It appears I was wrong on all counts.

Boys had a great time.

They had fun from the start to the time when their  parents collected them.

To be honest I did not see most of the parents.  I fell asleep on the couch.

Pretty much the way I think one should spend all birthdays and Saturdays!

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The boys try out a “cave” to test out the hand grips.

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Each boy was fitted with a harness and connected to a the “person who holds the rope” on the ground.  At no point did I feel any of the kids were in an unsafe situation nor were they pushed to do something they did not want to do.

But they were encouraged to push on, and really get to points that they probably did not think they could reach.

As they time progressed, the boys started racing each other as to who could climb up the fastest.

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The boys were in two teams.

They were taken through different grades of climbing with a gradual increase in difficulty.

Only one of the boys had ever been rock climbing before, but all of them did it, and it was incredible how much fun they had.

City Rock – great location for a kid’s party – and actually a really cool place to take the kids. {while we were there, there were lots of families that came along and did some rock climbing with their kids}

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Monday …. birthdays and wine estates …..

Isabelle turns 4 on Monday, 10 June 2013.

She is in the running to be my favourite child.

I know people say “I love all my children the same” … yeh, I think you do, but you love them differently.

I have different connections with each of my children, and I like different things about them.

I know I should be “like and sharing” more “if you love your child then like this image” but I am not sure I like them enough all the time to do that.  If I start sharing all that crap on Facebook then I can’t sit here in my cushion of sarcasm and judge other people who do.  It is a little burst of joy I have, please do not rob me of it.

I like it about as much as I like the one where people are telling me how much they love their sexy husbands on Facebook status updates — for the love of gd, get a room, get off Facebo0k, make him a pie or something.

 

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If that shit floats your boat, please carry on as you were …. am I the only one who wants to stab people who like and relike and then share this shit?

But I digress ….. Isabelle is a challenging child.

She is four (on Monday) and her speech is probably that of a 2 and a 1/2 year old.

She can make the sounds, can sound out the alphabet, and the word if you do it with her, but she has an inability to plan a word, so in her hands you end up standing there and not having a clue what she is rattling on about.

We have done speech therapy, and I must be honest, I am not sure it is working.

I am not convinced she would have made the same level of speech progress if just left to get on with it.

I get what she is saying about 70% of the time, the other 30% I am standing there with a furrow in my forehead while she is saying the same thing.  Louder and louder.  And I still have no idea what she wants.

Eventually it results in me yelling: “use your words, I do not know what you want” and her then starting to escalate the demand and scream and cry at the same time.  Usually when I am trying to drive, and she is in the back of the car and wants me to do something.  While I am driving.  It sometimes involves me taking off her shoes.  Just to reiterate I am driving, and she is sitting in the third row of a van …..

Because she struggles to be understood she tends to throw wobblies (a nice word for going off her fkn face in the kitchen) because she wants something.

She knows what it is, and is screaming it at us, and we are standing there handing her the tomato sauce, a spoon, a small unopened bag of cookies, a tin of tuna, change for the blind, when actually she would like a glass of Pinotage.

She is the youngest in our family, and probably the child we fear the most.

Hands down she would beat Connor and Georgia in a bare hands fist fight.

I think Connor and Georgia have realised arguing with her is pointless because if she does not get what she wants, then odds are she will kick you in the groin.  On the up side she says “kick you” very clearly, so we do praise her every time with “well done Isabelle” – I sense we might be sending a mixed message.

Monday is her birthday.  Her birthday is overshadowed every year as Georgia has her birthday on the 20th, and we do a combined party – but only with Georgia’s friends.  I am not sure Isabelle has realised she has not had a birthday since she arrived, but she is not saying, so we are taking that as a non-issue.

This year I was planning to send cake to school and maybe organise a face painter or something.  But instead (because I can’t get a face painter) I have decided that I will spend the day with her.

Have a Isabelle Day.

I will send her to school in the morning with cake, so she can still celebrate a bit with her friends, and then I will collect her at 12h00 and we can head out and do a nice lunch and find a play area.

She can then walk around Toys R Us and choose a present for herself – maybe stop at a wine estate, I think she will like that.  I think once she has gone to Toys R Us, I will be such a hero, I could probably take her to a three hour reading of Moby Dick, and I will still be a hero!

The one benefit of working for myself – if we discount the risk of financial insolvency, and the constant nagging sensation that maybe you really need to spend more time on bizcommunity and get yourself a damn job – is that I can take off a few hours and spend it with Isabelle on her birthday, and do not have to fill in a pile of paperwork, nor weasel up to my boss with tears in my eyes.

Cool that!  Happy Isabelle Day on Monday (and happy David D’Aguiar Day on Monday as well!!).

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Happy Birthday …. er to me!

I am hoping that when you read this I am skipping around Franschoek, and trying to forget that I am forty-fucking-one.

It is all a bit frightening.  I am closer to being 60 than I am to being 20.

I have no pearls of wisdom to share.  Happy birthday me!  I will stab the next child who calls me “tannie” ……

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Good and Bad Gift Ideas for Mother’s Day

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Mother’s Day.  A treacherous time of year.  Gift wise.

The stores are overflowing with trinkets, slippers and mugs with bears saying things like “The Best MOM Ever” and similar shit.

There are promises of Mother Day Lunches, which throw in a free glass of wine, and a red carnation.  It is all a bit blegh and worrisome.

I am not exactly sure that the definition is of trinket verses “something I would actually like” but it is fair to say that if it has the word MOM printed anywhere on it, it is not going to be a good gift.

If there is a red heart anywhere, and the hint of a carnation, you can be certain it is just shite and should be avoided.

It is probably not something you want to give or receive.

I am fairly sure I will get a home made card from Isabelle’s school, and even a macaroni necklace.  I quite liked last year’s one — I kept it for some time, but maybe a bracelet this year or macaroni ear rings would be a nice add on gift.

The possible only exception with gifts that include the word “MOM” would be Mommy Juice Wine

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I know that the idea is when you get a shockingly bad gift is to say the mantra: “its the thought that counts” – to which I say I tend to be thinking “what the fuck were you thinking??”

At the end of the day what is it that moms want?  Here are a couple of ideas of good gifts:

1.  To go to the toilet uninterrupted.  I could not think of a better way to spend a day, than Kennith coming up with a bag of all my favourite Woolies treats, making me a cup of tea, p0uring a bag of chuckles into a bowl, putting this on my side table and saying: “I am going to take the kids out for the day.  You relax, sleep, go for a shit, flick channels on the remote, go wild – we will see you at 17h00.  Enjoy the day by yourself in the house.  Oh I have done all the washing up, the kids rooms are clean, the house is in ship shape order. I even got Connor to clean up the dog shit – have a great day by yourself reading your book and dozing!”

That there is the perfect gift.

2.  To read a book in the bath uninterrupted.  Mine usually ends up with a small person coming and either getting in to the bath, or better yet sit on the toilet take a giant crap, and then tell me “Us finished” so I have to get out the bath to wipe their bum.  Toilet paper on wet hands, and looking at your child’s chocolate starfish whilst you are trying to soak yourself in the wonders of a Body Shop bath oil, is sort of lost in this exercise.

3.  A day at a Spa.  Not to be confused with a day at the Spar.  Which is similiar, but is not one of those instances where you go “ah, well just semantics hey!”  Not just being given a voucher, but it being planned for you.  Again revert to point 1.  Driving you to the spa, saying hey I got the kids, you enjoy your 6 hours of relaxation – I will catch you at 16h00.  Enjoy.

4.  A box of goodies from the Body Shop.  I adore the stuff from the Body Shop.  Those guys can seldom get it wrong.  I loved the “gingerbread” range that came out over Xmas.  Still using it, adore the Body Shop.

5.  One hour time out.  Three fresh croissants, fresh butter, some divine cheese, honey, a pot of tea, the newspaper and an hour to read and enjoy it all.

6.  Lovely jammies.  Not ones with hearts, not ones with “My MOM is the best” just lovely cotton or warm winter jammies – again aim for Woolworth.  PEP not so much!  That’s a good gift.

7.  Exclusive Books Vouchers – and being dropped off for 90 minutes to shop and choose books, then to meet your husband (kids need to be somewhere else) for a divine lunch!!  That is a great way to spend Mother’s Day.

8.  Godiva Truffles – here buddy, you just cannot go wrong!

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These are a couple of ideas of shit not to give:

1.  Appliances – I know a 4 slice kitchen toaster looks like a really good idea.  I bet she has even said something like “shit balls we need a new washing machine.”  Mother’s Day is not the day or the time to present anything that can be plugged in to a wall socket.  In the kitchen.  (this obviously excludes vaccuum cleaners and irons, which I assumed would be a foregone conclusion, but let’s add those in the interests of sanity)

2. A gift that is actually for you – this might include lingerie, a fishing rod or golf clubs, a new tv remote, new wii that sort of thing.

3.  Anything available at 21h00 on a Saturday night — if you had to stop at an Engen or BP Quick Shop to buy it, well then odds are it is not the best buy you can make.

4.  Artificial flowers — A definite must if you plan on being wacked in the head with them, and your Facebook status being changed to “it’s complicated.”

5.  Robot flowers – if you are purchasing flowers from the guys at the side of the road on mother’s day, then ask yourself why?  If you don’t know the answer, then hit your head against the steering wheel, and repeat exercise until you black out and the man at the traffic lights steals all your money (for those who appear baffled, in South Africa we refer to traffic lights as robots — hence the heading).  Do not buy flowers at traffic lights/robots – are you too lazy arse to stop at Woolworths at the very least?

6.  Gym membership — For the love of gd this is a bad idea.  Nothing good can come of this.  She will hear “you are fat and you better go exercise” – you will hear the slamming of doors, and then you will have to go and buy a back up gift to say sorry, and still continue to service the gym membership for 24 months even though she is not going to be using it.

7.  Lingerie — A mediocre to tacky gift on Valentine’s Day – but wow, just bad on Mother’s Day.

8.  Deodorant masquerading as perfume!!  Hells bells, my guess is you are in the aisle at Clicks.  Stop yourself, put the tacky box down, leave the store.  Go and get a drink, think it through again.  If it still looks like a good idea, order a large fucking drink.

9.  Heart bears, heart anything that has stuffing.  Unless it is a stuffed chicken and you are serving it for lunch, then you can put an heart on it anytime!

10.  Slippers.  How many slippers does any women need? One pair that is how many.  One pair.  If you or anyone you have known have bought a pair in the last dozen years, then cross this piece of shit off your ‘stuff to get mom’ list.

11.  A membership to Weight Watchers or a mountain bike (see point 6).  Both kinda say that you are starting to get a bit chunky, and we need someone to bring in the big guns.

12.  An electric egg boiler.  No, just say fucking no!

13.  Soap that has bigger wrapping than the soap.  This is a visual trick to make you think you are buying a fabulous gift, but really it is a bar of soap and enough plastic and shit to fill your plastic recycling bucket.

14.  A puppy.  A kitten.  A rabbit.  A hamster.  Fantastic another mouth to feed, and more shit to pick up.  Do not buy pets as gifts —you can buy pets as meals.  Chicken great for Sunday lunch, rabbit makes a good stew, and so on.

15.  Re-gifting.  Regifting is super funny, but not for mother’s day, because odds are you are going to fuck it up and give me the shit I gave you at Christmas.  This behaviour is just too risky, unless you have a fantastic spreadsheet-of-keeping-a-record-of-who-gives-you-stuff system.

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Franschhoek you sweetheart …. wait for me ….

I had not been to Franschhoek before last year.

True fact.

Kennith and I stayed over for a night and walking around the town, and had lunch, and dinner, and ate chocolates, and I found a metal Scottish Terrier doorstop.

It was a really lovely day.  I firmly realised that I do love Franschhoek.

Been promising to get out there again, and we just have not got there.  Story of my life.

My birthday is coming up – 9 May, and I am treating myself to a day in Franschhoek and a little stay over at a guest house.  I have booked a guest house – not quite sure where the kids will be, but those are details I can sort out between now and then.

I have booked dinner at Mange Toit – not sure if it is pretentious good, or we can put wine in our ice without the wine waiter shitting in his pants.

I plan to spend the day ambling around, strolling along through the shops and maybe a drive to a nearby wine estate for a walk around/glass of wine.

Sounds like a slice of heaven!  Exactly – this people is what heaven would be like, and then I might start believing in it.

I have booked lunch at Bread and Wine Restaurant which is at the Moreson Vineyard.

I drank a bottle of their Miss Molly wine last year and I think I had a religious experience {chances are if someone told me it was served in heaven I might well get on board with this heaven and hell malarkey.) I plan to buy a box of Miss Molly at lunch.  Not necessarily drink it all at lunch, but make a heroic dent in it would do.

I believe the restaurant is brilliant, so I am writing that in my diary in ink. With a giant heart and a note to starve myself for three days to really get the full experience.  I am so not used to going anywhere that does not break into the the Spur “it’s your birthday, it’s your birthday” with all the waiters-who-could-not-get-away-fast-enough singing along.

I am sure it will be fine.  I will bring my own sparkle and put it in my ice-cream, just so I do not forget the unfortunates who are eating at the Spur on my fine day.

I usually do not get excited by my birthday, but this year I am.  9 May, look out, I have your number.

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Party Planning step one ….. decide on a party theme …..

I know that “rite of passage” to mommy-hood is being able to pinterest the crap out of your child’s upcoming/planned/anticipated birthday party.

I think I have commented before that I am a bit less excited about my own children’s birthday parties, because they overwhelm me so much.

I get stressed right at the planning stage.  By the time we move to the RSVP’s and the parents who do not respond by the indicated date, I am about ready to throw back 10 Zolofts and wonder about the sanity of it all!!

Birthday parties are not happy occasions for me.  They are stressful and I usually just want to count 1-Mississippi, 2-Mississippi, 3-Mississipp until it is all over.

I have no idea how moms who throw parties manage to look so composed and that they are enjoying it all.  Eleven years in, and countless parties, and I still find a pap smear more enjoyable.

Connor has his birthday in December, so he is almost guaranteed hot and sunny weather.  Except on the dates where we plan an outdoor party that is weather dependent  then sure as nuts are sweaty, it will rain or be windy, as it has for the last three years – except the movie party, because on that day it was sunny and 36 degrees.

I have passed the torch of  “Connor’s birthday parties” to Kennith and he has been organising these for the last three years.  Though granted he forgot to get a cake last year, but let’s not hold that against him.

June is the birthday month for the girls. Sadly Isabelle has never actually had a birthday party – she is overshadowed totally by her sister every year without fail.  This year will be no exception.

I was planning on using an indoor venue for Georgia’s party this year, but she is turning 8, and she is at that age where indoor venues are a bit young for her.

I then thought I would look at a Pamper Party for her, but nothing I have seen fills me with much hope.  To be honest two of the potential party places never got back to me, so I am not exactly filled with hope and exaltation when we can barely get out of the starting gates.

Third plan was to have her birthday party at the Aquarium, and do a mermaid party.  But if you have 15 kids, it might just be cheaper to buy a live shark and put him in your pool and then the kids can throw fish at him.

Right now we are back at the idea of having a home party.

Georgia is at the age where the kids are drop off and go.   It is great on so many levels.  I do not have to cater for the parents, and  to this also means a reduction in awkward small talk. Right now I just need to prepare to say “hi there, lovely, wonderful, see you at about 16h00 okay?”

The rest of the time at least the only social awkwardness is me and a room full of eight year olds.  But if it is a late afternoon party, then at least I can drink wine, and that sometimes helps.

I had to first explain to Georgia that we were no longer doing the mermaid party.  I had hyped it up a bit to sell her on the idea. That was a bit of a challenge and an exercise in disappointing a seven-year old, but now she seems to be on board with my new idea.  More or less.

My new party plan (for this week, check in at the end of March for a revised new plan) is that we will throw a “Born to be an Artist” party.

Kids will do canvases and painting and stuff ….. I have no idea yet, but that is the rough overall picture at the moment, and that is pretty much all I have got.

I am thinking of painting a portion of the floor in the garage with chalk paint and the kids can draw on it.  I am thinking we can “frame” one wall in the garage and the kids can paint that too.  The options are endless, as long as it stays in the garage!

I am off to pinterest as soon as I finish this post.

Road Trip Story # 1

On the 10 December we left for a road trip – it was the first holiday we have taken with the kids.  We tend to go away without the kids, and when we do go away with them, we tend to head anywhere that is no more than 2 hours from home.

Mainly because at some point around day three we will just want to go home.

We drove to Bloemfontein, and then stayed over for a night – just so Connor was not going to be in the car for his birthday.

We had actually had a really cool surf party for him on the 8th.  10 of his friends doing a surf lesson and then surfing/falling at Muizenburg Beach.

I sat on the beach freezing and trying to keep Isabelle warm, thinking this is the coldest and grimmest birthday every – the wind was howling and it was freezing – only to be told by the boys that it WAS THE BEST BIRTHDAY EVER!!!

Shows what I know.  Children appear to have no thermostat and a high tolerance for lips that turn blue, and wind that makes you bend at the ankles.

We left Bloemfontein with stars in our eyes, and all the excitement one would expect when aimed towards Sun City.

I have never been to Sun City, so the idea of it was quite lavish, fun-filled, and included hours lazing around a pool with a large glass of Chenin Blanc and maybe a small packet of pistachios from the pool bar!

Sun City sounded very cool and we were “surprising ” the kids.  They only realised where we were going when Connor started reading the SUN CITY sign.

We are in the hotel and I am all excited about the fact that we are at SUN CITY.  We are taken up to our room by a porter and I am all WE ARE IN SUN CITY, WE ARE IN SUN CITY.

We walk in the room – bear in mind I have been stuck in a car for two days, so the room is like heaven.  I walk in.  It is big, it is clean, it does not smell of old food and feet like the car.  T\here is a big bed with crisp sheets and large pillows.  Oh heaven.  Wake me quick!

I am so “I am going to lie down with my book and a cup of tea” and I then I realised “hey where are the kids’ beds?”

“Where is the interleading door to the kids rooms?

I glance behind the tv cabinet.

I look under the bed.

I peek behind the curtain.

I ran my hand along the wall in the event it had one of those “secret” spring lock numbers.

I get annoyed because clearly we are in the WRONG ROOM.  I pivot around to Kennith and tell him we are booked in the wrong room, as where is the inter leading door to the kids’s room?

The porter indicates the red/orange couch with a bit of a flourish.

I knew he was saying something but I could not hear him, as the voices in my head started screaming at about that point.

I say a little louder (because I have learnt this from my kids, if you keep saying something over and over again, in a louder voice, sometimes you get that thing that you were not going to get in the beginning) voice: “WE ARE IN THE WRONG ROOM.  WE ARE MEANT TO BE IN THE FAMILY SUITE. THEY HAVE MADE AN ERROR WITH THE BOOKING.  WHERE IS THE KIDS ROOM?”

Porter guy showed us the roll out bed — which rolls out from the couch — where he suggests we are going to put three kids.  To sleep.

More importantly when he rolled out the bed, the room did not get any bigger.

We then were 5 people with 5 over sized bag, whose contents was thrown around in the room, squeezed into a room suited to 2 people. 2 people comfortable.  5 people a bit less so.

Shall we just say the glamour of SUN CITY evaporated right there!

I do not in any way wish to take away the magic that is SUN CITY.  But “family suites” appear to be not dissimilar from camping.  You have bags all around you, and you spend much of your day scratching around in them for items of clothing, and some more time trying to shove everything back into them.

If sleeping 5 in a room was slightly “what I did not expect” – 5 of us using one bathroom really took any trace of magic out of the equation.

By night two, Kennith ended up on the roll out couch’s mattress transferred to the floor.

Connor on cushions made from those that came off the couch, and I slept in the big bed with the two girls.

Not quite what I had expected, I will confess.

Another Party Over, mommy has a lie down …

I had Georgia’s party this weekend at Bugz Playpark – the downside is that you cannot bring anything to the venue, the upside is that you cannot bring anything to the venue …. the result is you have nothing to stress about, as the elves take care of all the bits and pieces on your behalf.

Totally winner winner chicken dinner stuff.

You tick a few things off on your list, and then you give them Kennith’s credit card, and then you enjoy the day.

The rest is taken care of.

The only thing I had to do on the day was go and collect the cake, the remainder of the day was pretty much easy sailing.  Of course about an hour before the party I start to feel that manic feeling that overcomes me when ever I am hosting/attending a party {social phobia much?}

I arrived at Bugz Playpark, and everything was set up.  The food was better than I anticipated.  They made party packs, there was cooldrink, there was Smarties and Jelly Beans.  The venue looked really sweet (I have not used Bugz Playpark inside venue before)

There was really absolutely nothing for me to do, other than stand around and appear useless.

The party hostess set up, she fetched things if I asked, she put everything out, she face painted, she cleaned up … bless her cotton socks.

In keeping with my love of birthday parties and RSVP’s, there were two moms who cancelled on the day as thier girls were sick, and there was one child who arrived who had not RSVP’d … but I took this all in my stride.  Honestly I did.

My cousin decided on the last moment to come through with her three kids, and all I did was ask the friendly and efficient hostess to add an additional party pack – sorted!!

I would like to tell you how good I was that I did not stress out, and that I did not swear and cuss, but I do have a small confession, I had Mommy’s Little Party Helper in the form of a beta-blocker.

Basically medication that supresses your body’s reaction to anxiety and stress.  You still feel anxious and stressed, but you do not break out in sweat, your heart does not race, and your breathing does not become rapid and shallow (all three standard for me) so I stood around being cool and calm, no matter what was happening.

I realise it is an absolute “cheat” but right now I admit that there are a lot of things I cannot handle, and any bit of assistance I can get, I take.  {I have a very limited supply of the beta-blockers so have enough for 5 events/functions/stressful situations where I feel I need a Get Out of Jail Free Card}

It was a great party, the kids ran around and had fun.  We actually ended up not having time to even cut the cake.  I also do not think anyone could have fitted any cake in – there was just too much food for both adults and children.

I loved when the one little girl said: “This is the BEST party I have ever been to, EVER!”

Bless her.  The cheque is in the mail.

It really was a good, easy party – and other than the RSVP thang, everything else was all quite lovely.

Happy almost Birthday Georgia!

{Georgia’s birthday is on the 20th of June and her and I are going to have a spa afternoon after I collect her from school.  Can you say bliss?}

Random photos from the day, I actually forgot my camera at home, so we had a use a mik-and-druk camera}

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Have I told you how much I hate birthday parties?

I love your children’s birthday parties, but I truly do not enjoy the planning and co-ordination that goes into a birthday party for my children.

I would love for them to have a truly spectacular birthday party.

I would love it more if I have absolutely nothing to do with the planning, and just come as a guest.  I want to be rich enough to employ a party planner, and then give them a large wad of cash, some basics outlines and walk away from the entire matter.

For one, I procrastinate.

I do not get all pinterest and make a huge album of great ideas for birthday parties.

I also think that kid’s birthday parties have lost touch with reality – moms go all out to prove they can throw the best party, either to indicate how much they love their child or to show up moms who cannot order a Happy Meal without forgetting the toy.

It is just all gone on so overboard.  The end result is that you also need to up your game or your party just looks like 2 cupcakes and a cheap candle!!

I barely get in under the wire to book a suitable venue and order a cake on the right day.

Then as I think I am getting some sort of momentum, I put together the invites, and this is about the part where I truly lose what is left of my very delicate mind, and my very thin level of ability to like other people.

What the helvetica is it about parents (yes moms) who cannot RSVP timeously?  Get the invite, decide if you like the child enough to go, check your diary, make a decision, rsvp – easy as shite.

I supply an email and a cell number, so in no way does the person actually have to speak to me.  You can sms or email me anytime.  Even at 2 am.

Really, just a “howzit, see you at the party” or “howzit, sorry won’t be at the party” – less than 144 characters, decision, push and send response should use up less time than it takes you to change a tampon.

But, each and every birthday party is the same shite.  Send invites.  Make it very clear in the best possible language you would appreciate it/love it/offer free blow.jobs if they just rsvp by the date you have indicated.

Usually in bold uppercase, and if you are feeling slightly pissy then you would add italics as well – I have considered attached a LCD light  so the date and time that I am begging for an rsvp for flashes.  Repeatedly.

Even with all of this more than 1/2 the stupid and rude parents do not rsvp.

So, I am stuck wondering if they are just not “rsvp people” and I should still plan for them to be there – you know cover the cost per child, order a party pack and all that, as if they arrive.

It is not the parent who is going to feel like a right chop, but the kid who is going to stand there like “orphan annie with no party to go to” as I go “hey what I surprise, did not realise you were coming, errrrr…………..” , or do I assume that they are “not rsvp people” an dnot coming, but are just rude as fk not to tell me.

Am I the only person this happens to?

Should I take this as a personal slight?  Are my children that unpopular, that parents do not RSVP in the hope that they hold out to see if they get a better invite for the same day?

Every year this crap annoys me, and this year is no less annoying.

Next year Georgia/Isabelle/Connor will be having a “take my two best” friends to a movie and a lunch – pick two friends, and bring them, that is all.

Fk this dozen kids shit.

Do I sound a bit annoyed?  You have no idea!!!  Just RSVP for cheese and rice, what the hell is wrong with you?

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