“Excuse me Miss…” Why being short is a pain in the arse

All my life I have been little and when I say little, I mean, tiny. Sadly not width wise, but height wise.

Think Oompa Loompa, minus the fake tan and green hair…

via GIPHY

When we were made to stand in height order for things at school or dance shows, I was always at the front or first smallest. The inevitable humiliation of everyone staring at me and then saying, “Oh! Look! You’re so short!” – Yeah, ya think? I hadn’t fucking well noticed mate, thanks for pointing that out.

As you can probably tell, it bothers me. A lot. I can pretty much guarantee that every week of my life, someone either mentions my height, asks how tall I am or asks me how old I am because of it. I can feel the bloody pressure rise in my body as someone’s brain ticks before my eyes, just as they’re open their mouth to inform me of my stifled height. If I wasn’t such a timid person, I would probably tell them to shut the fuck up.

Sorry, a lot of fucks there but I have many to give on this topic…

As a short person, 5ft on a good day when the wind is blowing in a North-north-westerly direction and it’s a full moon, I have had a number of ‘hilarious’ incidents occur. Don’t get me wrong, they were cringe makingly embarrassing at the time, but even I can look back now and laugh…sometimes.

Here I will share with you just a few of those incidents.

It’s not easy being me.

My headstone will probably read;

“Here lies Gemma Nuttall – Short, voice like a chipmunk on helium and looked quite like the pale british cousin of an Umpa Lumpa. May she rest in peace. Wasn’t she short though…”


 1) The Airport

Back in 2006, myself and my other half went on holiday to Portugal with my best friend and her hubby. We had an amazing time. A true pre-kids, happy, carefree, obscene amount of food and alcohol, sunbathing, book reading, holiday.

At Faro airport, on the way back to Blighty, we queued to go through security and, as with every time I go through one of these sodding things, the alarm went off despite me having nothing metallic on me…or so I thought.

I stopped, got pointed in the direction of a stern looking Portuguese lady and was told I was going to be frisked. Great. A pat down in front of everyone. She then hesitated, looked around puzzled and said to Chris, my husband, who was behind me, “Are you her father? Can we frisk her?” He, stifling a massive fit of the giggles in front of the angry Portuguese security officer said, “yes, of course you can! I don’t care what you do, I’m not her Dad!” and walked off so he could fall on the floor and die laughing along with my best mate and her other half. Oh the sodding shame of it all! My (then) boyfriend had been mistaken for my Dad and at the age of 22 I had been mistaken for someone under 16. Shit a brick.

After my pat down by the angry lady, I walked red faced over to my pals and Chris and wanted the ground to open up and swallow me down to Mordor.

Not only had I been mistaken for a child, but my boyfriend was mistaken for my bloody dad! I kept telling myself it’s his fault, not mine, because he looks really bloody old (time clearly hasn’t been kind to hubster…) but truth be told, I do look young for my age, and I am the size of a Hobbit.

2) The petrol station

I drive a massive bloody car because we have so many offspring. A Land Rover Discovery to be precise. “How do you drive that?! Can you even see over the steering wheel?! Can you touch the pedals?!” I get asked. Erm, well, seen as I’ve driven it here, yes, I imagine I can touch the fucking pedals and see over the wheel unless it’s driven itself like a car from Back to the Fucking Future…

Jebus, I really am angry about this aren’t I.

Sorry not sorry.

Anyhow, I digress…

I pull in to a petrol station to fill up and I walk into the station to pay. As I reach the desk, I inform the cashier of my pump number and they look at me, then at the pump, then at me, then at the pump. They frown, tilt their head to one side condescendingly and utter the words, “Are you old enough to fill that car up?”

Erm, yes chap, yes I am. I am in fact the registered owner, I passed my driving test 16 years ago and I can in fact fill this car up as well as drive it.

“Yes, that’s my car and yes I am old enough to fill it. Pump number 3 please…” douchebag.

Everyone behind me in the queue starts following suit, looking at me, looking at the car, looking at me, looking at the car. I want to go all Street Fighter on their asses and drive off into the sunset in my massive beast of a car but restrain, laugh it off and go on my (not so) merry way.

Yet another example of my height and apparent baby face causing me a cringe worthy experience in public.

3) The Supermarket

Back last year, I went into Asda with my little one, who was 2 at the time, to buy him the new Thomas the tank engine DVD. It’s full of violence, swearing and scenes of a sexual nature (I always knew Annie and Clarabell wanted a secret threesome with Thomas…). Of course I am joking, it contains ‘mild peril’ and is rated U. U for UNIVERSAL meaning ANYONE can watch it. ANYONE. You can see where this is going can’t you…

I pop the DVD through the self service checkout and no sooner than I do, the checkout light starts flashing red and the screen says, ‘Age approval required”. Are you fucking serious?! Age approval required for a U rated DVD?!

I wait for a staff member to come and sort the till out whilst I entertain a whinging toddler and once they arrive, they say, “Ah, the till is asking for me to see ID for proof of age for this DVD”.

You what love?! It needs ID approval for a U rated Thomas DVD?!

I laugh in her face.

“Are you serious?” I ask.

“Yes, I’m afraid so, the computer is asking me for it…” she replies.

Fuck the computer. Fuck the Thomas DVD I think in my head.

“Here you go, ID proof that I am over one day old” I sarcastically announce as I pass my Driving Licence over to her for approval.

“Yep, that’s fine, thank you” replies the jobsworth checkout assitant and she hands me my ID back.

What is this madness I find myself in?!

ARGH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


 So, as you can see, yes these situations are bloody funny but, truth be told, I do find it really embarrassing and I always have done.

I am now 32 and I still can’t go into a shop without breaking into a sweat if I have alcohol on the checkout, and for someone with a huge love for Gin, that is an actual nightmare.

Being short has it’s other daily trails and tribulations too.

I can’t reach most things on the top shelf at the supermarket. I have been known to put a set of kitchen tongs in my trolley, not to purchase them at the end, but just to use to assist me around the shop to retrieve high up items and then I put them back before I go to the checkout. Yes seriously I do that.

I can’t get trousers to fit me anywhere. Seriously, shops that say they stock ‘Petite’ trousers are lying. Even they are in need of a few inches being chopped off – I could make a snazzy pair of shorts out of the offcuts I suppose but I can’t even sew a button on, let alone fashion some shorts. A minor success I had was recently though was, I wanted a long black skirt, but couldn’t find one, so I tried on what should have been a mid-length one and it was just the job. Short arse win.

People say I should be grateful I look younger than I am, that it’s nice, but let me tell you, I find it a complete ball-ache.

I am just waiting for the day in the not so distant future that someone asks if my eldest is my boyfriend. It’ll happen people, I am just waiting for it in a few years time.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I am off to google homes for sale in Hobbiton so I can be with people of my own kind where I can reach the top shelf in the supermarket and find trousers that fit. Oh, and you’re allowed to have hairy toes and legs there. Also a win…

#IveGot99ProblemsAndBeingShortIsOne




Crap celebration…

So, with Potty Training almost under control and in ‘full flow’ (pardon the piddle related pun) we now have the joyous task of celebrating poos done on the potty.

What a milestone.

Never in my life did I imagine that I would reach a stage where I inform my husband as I greet him after a long day at work by announcing proudly that Ben has sat on his plastic throne and created a turd.

High praise ensues.

Daddy tells him well done and gives him a high five, mummy gives him a hug and 10p (yep, I stupidly bribed him with MONEY to shit on the pot. He now tries to squeeze one out every time he visits so he can increase his piggy bank stash. Rookie mistake), his brothers jump about chanting, “Ben did a poo! Ben did a poo! Yay!!!!!!”

It’s utter madness if you were an outsider looking in. Us, all there, celebrating the latest poo like we have won the lottery.

The most unusual bit about Ben’s toilet training compared to my previous experience with his brothers, is the fact that he is rather ‘attached’ to his crap creations. Each time he has completed his pooping session, he stands up, has a good visual inspection of it and then informs me of what it looks like and tells me to look too. It’s bloody grim, but he has to do it every single time otherwise he (literally) looses his shit.

So far we have had a snake, an apple, a worm, a banana, a cat, a tree, a monster and a snowman.

He then tips his crap art down the toilet, says, “Bye, bye! Have a nice swim!” and flushes them away before presenting me with his hand so I can tip him 10p for his latest creation.

I’ve never known a kid like it.

He also refers to his poo as ‘him’. Like it’s a person.

“Can me see him?”

“Can me put in toilet?’

“Me say bye him?”

I’m surprised we haven’t had to have a ceremony where we crack a bottle of champers on the side of the bog as we flush it away on it’s maiden voyage down the drain yet.

I’m just hoping that it’s a phase that he grows out of soon.

Or that he shits out an epic masterpiece I can put in the Tate Modern and get him a little university trust fund going.

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

Kids.

Poo.

Sleep.

Repeat.




The spa day…

I have a confession to make.

Recently, I pretended to be someone else.

I lied.

If I was Pinocchio, my nose would have been bigger than a Blue Whales penis.

(Fact: A Blue Whale’s penis can reach between 8 and 10 feet in length. Can you imagine having to control that in the sea?! Nightmare on a choppy day. Anyway, back to the story…)

I moonlighted as someone called Mandy and it was one of the most excruciatingly embarrassing moments of my life.

Let me explain.


A few months ago, my mum and her friends organised a girlie Spa day for my mum’s 60th Birthday. They’re such a lovely bunch of ladies, they met each other over 20 years ago at a local Aqua aerobics class. As well as exercising their bodies, they exercised their jaws, giggling and chatting their way through the classes, and became lifelong chums. How lovely is that?! Bonding over foam woggles and aquatic jumping jacks.

The spa day was taking place at a local hotel and the order of the day was a spa package where you rock up,  change into nothing but a swimming costume and robe for the day, use the spa facilities, have a treatment, a spot of lunch, some more spa usage and then off for some dinner on the way home. The perfect ‘girlie’ day.

Sadly, a couple of days before the spa day, one of my mum’s friends fell ill. Nothing life threatening I hasten to add, but she was in a bit of discomfort so sadly had to drop out.

Her name was Mandy.

Can you see where this is going yet?

***

My mum phones me to explain that Mandy is a bit under the weather and asks if I would like to go in her place (Mandy’s very kind suggestion) because it’s all been paid for already. Treatments have been booked, lunch has been ordered and it’s too late for a refund. I instantly say yes because it’s a lovely gesture and I wouldn’t want the spot to go to waste. Mum then says I will just have to pretend to be Mandy for the day in case they try to charge us for a change of person or anything.

Then, as I hang up, the panic sets in…

via GIPHY

“Panic?!” I hear you all ask. “What is there to panic about?! It’s a spa day!”

Well, I shall tell you all now, I am a worrier.

It’s in my genetics.

My beloved nan was a worrier, my dad is a worrier and sadly I too have inherited the worry gene. I can lie awake at night worrying about my children falling off a cliff when we live a good hour and a half away from any cliffs.

It dawned on me as I hung up that by pretending to be Mandy, I would have to lie, and as well as being a worrier, I am also a truly shit liar. I go red, I sweat and stumble over my words, you get the gist, so the thought of having to pretend to be someone else for a few hours whilst trying to relax on a spa day was giving me the fear.

I also HATE massages.

Literally hate them.

I know, I know, I’m not doing very well here am I. Shit liar, worrier, massage hater, potty mouth, gin swigger…what does my husband see in me??

I just feel so awkward – how terribly British of me.

I don’t get any pleasure (Oi! Stop sniggering at the back!) or relaxation from them and I am also really ticklish. I just can’t have strangers giving me a rub down (Tom Hardy and Kit Harrington, you’re excused in this instance) without wanting to either fall into a gigantic hole and not come out for a very long time because of embarrassment or laugh insanely and possibly get myself sectioned.

I held out hope upon hope that Mandy had plumped for a manicure (that I could handle) but my worst fears were realised when my mum confirms that lovely Mandy had indeed chosen to have a neck, shoulder and back massage.

Fuck. My. Life.

Someone get me a brown paper bag.

***

The spa day arrives and I have shaved my legs all the way to the top in anticipation of having to strut about in a swimsuit and bath robe all day. Another cause for embarrassment – nobody needs to see me in a swimsuit these days. My stomach and legs bulge out of the lycra swimsuit where they can like a sausage bursting free from it’s casing…

We arrive at the hotel and it’s all very zen and tranquil and the chap behind reception (who bizarrely looks like a local supermarket manager rather than a spa manager and clearly uses words like fuck and bastard in the pub with his mates) speaks in a soft, slow, gentle voice like we are idiotic children.

“Hello ladies,” he whispers, “how are we all this morning? Looking forward to a day of quiet and relaxation I hope…”

No chap, actually I’m not. I am about to lie to your face and tell you I am called Mandy when I am, in fact, called Gemma. I am also going to lie whilst confirming to you that I have chosen a massage as my treatment when I would actually rather choose to sit in an ice bath with nothing on than have a stranger give me a rub down.

“Oh yes!” we all exclaim, “we can’t wait!” – someone kill me now.

I glance nervously at my mum – she knows I am panicking about pretending to be Mandy – and she smiles back at me and says it will be fine and to stop worrying.

I do as I feared and confirm to the supermarket/spa manager man that I am in fact called Mandy and yes I have indeed chosen to neck, shoulder and back massage. I can feel my hands are a bit sweaty but I carry on and breathe a sigh of relief as he ‘checks me in’ and gives me a clipboard.

I sit down with the clipboard only to find I have to fill in a medical form. I then panic more.

Who do I put I am on the form?! I am lying here! What if I die in the middle of my massage and they say Mandy is dead when actually she isn’t and I am?! Oh what a tangled web we weave…

I told you I was a worrier.

Do I go the whole hog and say I am Mandy, aged 60 who has the following medical conditions?

Do I say I am Mandy, aged 32 and is (as far as she knows) fit and healthy?

Do I come clean and say I am called Gemma?

I go for option 2. I am now called Mandy, but I am indeed 32 and I have no medical issues of note (other than an irrational fear of massages).

***

I hand the clipboard in to the supermarket manager (I’ll call him Geoff) and I feel like he is eyeing me suspiciously. Like he knows about my lie. Like he can smell my fear, sorry, Mandy’s fear. I swiftly trot to the ladies changing rooms safe in the knowledge Geoff cannot follow me in there and wrestle myself into my swimsuit and bathrobe.

We sit in a dark room with some wafting yoga-esque music playing, loungers, faux candles (health and safety first) magazines and dim lighting – why do they put magazines in a room that is about as dim as Donald Trump? – and wait to be called for our treatments. I feel sick as I wait for the lady to call me, I mean, Mandy.

My mum’s friend gets called for her treatment, then my mum and then me. The poor beautician has no idea about the lie I am living either, oh the lies!!!!!

“Mandy?” she says as she peers into the darkness. Only I am in the room so she deduces fairly swiftly that I must be her. If only she knew…

“Yes, that’s me!” I reply. Sweat gracing my palms.

I reluctantly shuffle out and follow her into the treatment room, my robe dragging on the floor making me look like a child dressed like a Jedi knight because it’s so big on me (why don’t they do hobbit sized robes in these places?! I even had to roll the sleeves up about 6 times!)

“Okay Mandy,” she says in a hushed voice, “if you can just remove your robe and pull your swimming costume down to just above your bottom then lie down on your front on the bed that would be lovely. I will wait outside and give you a few moments then knock when I am coming back in. That alright?”

“Yes, that’s fine” I reply, whilst inside wanting to shout, “you touch me in a minute woman, I’ll go all mother fucking Karate Kid on your ass!”

I do as she says and lie there feeling like an absolute twat. My face is pushed in the hole in the therapy bed causing my fat cheeks to give me a comedy chubby face and I feel like I suspected I would, nervous, worried and like a complete fraud.

Then comes the knock at the door.

“Hi Mandy! I’m back…” the poor beautician whispers. “I won’t talk anymore now, just relax and if you experience any pain or discomfort, just let me know”.

Bless her heart.

Mandy would be so ready for this, but not Gemma. Oh fuck, here we go…

The massage takes about 25 minutes. Thankfully, due to me being face down on a bed, the poor therapist couldn’t see me swearing under my breath, muttering that I’m not in fact called Mandy and that I do in fact feel rather a lot of discomfort in the form anxiety due to her touching me.

It’s the longest 25 minutes of my life. I lay there, living my lie. Knowing I am not who she thinks I am, like I have lied to someone I have met for a blind date.

Well, this is awkward. I feel like I should make small talk, discuss the weather, ask if she is a fan of Game of Thrones or if she gets hand ache from rubbing people for a whole day, but I relent. Mandy wouldn’t do that Gemma, and you are Mandy. Just lie there and let her get on with it.

As the massage ends, the therapist says to me, “So Mandy, we are all finished now. If you would like to get dressed I will wait outside and you can just come out when you’re ready, alright?”

Dear god, if she calls me Mandy once more I think I might crack.

“Thanks so much!” I reply chirpily with towel print all over my face and a pained expression from all the lies. I end the massage more tense than I did when I went in and can’t wait to get back into the dark room and pretend to be asleep so that if Geoff the supermarket manager comes in he won’t bother me.

***

“Did you enjoy that Mandy?” my mum asks. I throw her a glance and she giggles along with her friend. They think it’s bloody hilarious (it is really – unless you are the one moonlighting) and I thank god that the worst bit is over. Luckily Mandy had good taste in food and her lunch choices were spot on. All was not lost.

So, there we have it.

It’s safe to say I don’t do massages, I don’t really do spa days, I can’t lie very well, I worry and…I’m not called Mandy.

Oh, and if you’re reading this Geoff, sorry.


(PS: Thank you Mandy and the HFC’s for letting me go in your place. Despite sounding like an ungrateful bitch I did manage to have a giggle and my mum had a super birthday.xx)




The #YouHaveToLaugh tag

There is a new blogger tag on the block and it’s called the #YouHaveToLaugh tag. The tag is the brainchild of tena-lady laughter inducing bloggers, Fran (Whine, Whinge, Wine) and James (A life just Ordinary) and I have been nominated to take part by the equally funny, and also really lovely, Dawn from Rhyming with Wine. Thanks Dawn you leg-end!

If you haven’t checked out Dawn’s blog, you really must. I’m not just saying this, she is properly funny. My fave post of hers (and this was so hard to narrow down) is this one called, “Quest to the Front Door” – oooooh! Doesn’t that sound like a first draft of a Harry Potter book to you guys?! I love how Dawn has managed to capture everything that is a complete and utter ball-ache about trying to leave the house with children, whilst getting it to rhyme. She is an actual genius – Jay-Z has nothing on this homie – and never fails to make me laugh manically in front of my laptop!

So the basic gist of this is I answer a few questions whilst attempting to be vaguely humerous in the process.

Don’t hold out much hope.

If you don’t have expectations, you can’t be disappointed.

My life mantra.

What a positive one eh?!


1) Fill in the gap: Before I had children I never …..

…realised people could be such judgemental arseholes. Woah! I’m straight in there aren’t I?! Honestly, before I pushed a small person out of my lady bits, I had no idea of how opinionated people could be. The Judgy McJudgepants of the world seem to be all around you once you have younglings and they aren’t afraid to tell you when you’re doing something wrong, or different to how they think you should do it.

Look, if I am being a complete knob-head and feeding my baby a bottle vodka instead of milk (just to set the record straight before someone calls Social Services, this has NEVER happened, it’s merely an elaborate example for dramatic effect), by all means jump in and set me straight, but if I have chosen to *shock horror* not warm up my babies ‘ready to drink’ carton of milk, don’t go all Katie Hopkins on my ass and start telling me I am going to make my child have stomach ache and possibly give them constipation (yep, I got told that). As luck would have it, my first baby would drink his milk at any temperature so should we be out and about, I could just open a ready made carton and feed him. Job done. No fuss. No drama. Until Judgy McJudgepants arrives that is…

Kids having a tantrum in the supermarket? Judgy McJudgepants arrives.

Child isn’t potty trained by three and a half years old? Judgy McJudgepants arrives.

You take your kids to Maccy D’s as a treat every now and then? Judgy McJudgepants arrives.

You get the idea.

Word of advice Judgy McJudgepants, keep your opinions to yourself, or start writing a blog about how much everything annoys you like I have.

2) What is the most annoying toy that your child owns or has owned and why?

A mother fucking whistle.

Toot.

Toot.

Toot.

Toot.

Toooooooooooooot!

Tooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooot!!!!!

Toot.

FYI people making up party bags, step away from the whistles! I will remember that it was you who gave my child one and I will ensure it is returned to you eventually…along with 20 other whistles.

3) Would you rather be covered in poo or covered in puke?

OMFG. I don’t know. I really don’t. This is like asking me if I prefer Gin or Amaretto, I just can’t choose. Having suffered the fate of both poo-gate and puke-gate during my parenting journey thus far, I would probably have to say I would rather be covered in poo.

Urgh, what has my life become that I am saying being covered in someone else’s shite is more appealing than being vomited over? What a state of affairs.

Basically, poo comes off better than puke in my experience and while poo smells of, well, shit, Puke is in a category all of it’s own. The stench of that stuff can linger for weeks. Such an incident occurred in our car once and trying to clean a child’s car seat accessorised with vomit has to be up there as one of the most soul destroying things I’ve ever done. It’s just grim. In the seat buckle, in the padding of the seat, on the straps. Need I go on. It was awful. Poo all the way.

how potty training my toddler went

4) Is Peppa Pig more annoying than Postman Pat is bad at his job? Discuss.

I can’t believe I am going to say this, because I am really not a fan of the talking Bacon Sandwich as those who read my blog will know, but Postman Pat really pushes my buttons. How the fuck is the guy still in a job?! Royal mail cutbacks and redundancies have been rife and yet, this nincompoop has managed to maintain his job as well as being given a helicopter, a sidecar, a van and a lorry for being a complete and utter fuckwit. And his nose looks like a penis. What a calamity his life is.

It actually makes me a bit sad being so mean about old Pat. I used to love him as a kid and my nan used to sit with me and watch it but this new Postman Pat STD, or SDS, or whatever it is now, is just stupid. You cannot teach kids that choosing to be a postman when you’re older can mean fucking up a delivery every day causing pandemonium. If they did that in real life, they would end up jobless, homeless and cursing their childhood role model of Postman Pat STD, or SDS, whatever. Have a word Pat.

5) What time constitutes a lie-in in your house now and how does this compare to your pre-child days?

7am. That is golden. If I can sleep, uninterrupted until 7am I feel like I’ve hibernated for half a year.

I have to tell you all, it really does get better. No word of a lie. As a mum to a 9 year old, a 7 year old and a 3 year old, I know that (thanks to my older two) the kids do being to cherish their beds more, the lack of sleep really isn’t forever. We do still have the odd shit night – feck my life when all 3 of them get a sickness bug at the same time. It’s happened and I felt like a zombie by the end of that week – but on the whole, things have really improved.

(Cue karma ruining my life tonight and all 3 kids waking up at 5am tomorrow morning).

6) What is your favourite swear word or swear word combo and when was the last time you used it?

Wank-Puffin is my favourite swear at the moment. Sadly this gem of a cuss can only to be used whilst on my own or mumbled under my breath, but it has a somewhat satisfying comedy about it which often dissipates the rage I am feeling. I love to use it for driving faux-pas. For example;

“Not using those pretty flashing lights called indicators today then you Wank-Puffin?!”

“What a Wank-Puffin you are parking in a parent and child space when you don’t have a child”.

See, works doesn’t it?

Wank-Puffin.

7) Tell us your worst ever nappy or potty training experience.

Sadly the worst experience didn’t involve a nappy or a potty…and that’s why it was so bad.

My eldest, then aged 2, was a bit of a nightmare for removing his nappy at nighttime just to piss me off. Sadistic little bugger. Anyhow, he did it one night and yep, you guessed it, he did a huge shit and smeared it all over himself and his bedroom. He had cream carpet in his room at that time. And white walls. It was like a horror film. I won’t ever let him forget that (18th birthday story ammo for sure) and it caused us to replace his carpet with wood flooring so that any further shincidents wouldn’t be quite as bad to clean up.

8) Do you agree with young children being allowed to play on Tablets and Phones?

Yes.

Sorry Judgey McJudgepants, I am royally going to piss you off but I have let all 3 of my children play on tablets and, on occasion, my phone from a young age. Pokemon Go is the reason my kids play with my phone, but we are out and about in the fresh air whilst they play so that’s not all bad, surely?!

There is a time and a place for tablets and devices but as a mum to 3 boys, you can’t let one do something and say no to the other, so that’s how they’ve ended up playing from a young age. Also, shit just needs to get done sometimes and if that means I let my toddler play a Peppa Pig app so I can put some washing away or cook dinner, then so be it. The older they get, the harder it is to prise them away from their devices I think but we have an app on there which limits screen time each day. Basically, I think it’s up to each individual family to make their own rules and I couldn’t give a toss if that’s what works for them. My toddler has actually learnt a lot from various things he has played and watched on the iPad (maybe not opening kinder eggs so much but counting, colours, songs etc) and I still do a lot with him myself. It’s finding a balance isn’t it. As for my older two, the iPad has become a huge part of life because they do ‘homework’ on there. They practice spellings that I load into an app each week, they do maths challenges, but they also have down-time and play games.

Life has changed.

Technology is part of life now and I think we need to embrace it and stop the judging. Lord knows it helps my sanity to sit next to the toddler at night as he goes to sleep and laugh at the many posts on social media to remind me that I’m not alone in this mad parenting game!

9) Do you go to bed early to make sure you get enough sleep or do you stay up late to relish the peace and quiet once everyone else is in bed?

It depends. Some days I am so knackered I cannot wait to get into bed and switch the world off but at the weekend, I do like to stay up later than my usual curfew of 10pm (how old am I?!) and relish the silence. My husband goes to bed at 10pm regardless (unless we have found a good film to watch and he will push the boat out and stay up until 11/11:30 – we are so rock and roll!) and so I try to go to bed at the same time as him so we aren’t like ships that pass in the night during the week.

10) If squirrels ruled the world, what do you think would be the advantages and disadvantages?

I have a massive issue with Squirrels at the moment (I wrote a post about it a couple of years ago in fact such was my rage), the grey variety, not the illusive red ones, and it’s all since I became a fan of gardening. Again, how old am I?!

I love gardening but for the last few years we have had 3 grey squirrels wreaking havoc in my flower beds. Jesus, I sound like I am on a Radio 4 phone in…

Basically, the little grey ball sacks are diggin up all my tulips, onions and alliums and it’s really pissing me off. I try tapping the window to ‘shoo’ them away (how middle England of me) but they totally have an ‘I don’t give a fuck’ attitude to life like the local ASBO’s and carry on digging away in my plants. I have to actually go out there and charge at them before they fuck off into someone else’s garden for a good old rampage.

Look, they’re cute and stuff, and it cracks me up watching my neighbour get cross at them stealing the nuts and seeds she has put in ‘Squirrel proof’ holders in her garden but, NIMBY Mr Squirrel, thank you please.

Anyway, I went a tad off point there, if Squirrels ruled the world, I am not sure there would be many advantages. There would be no more tulips, alliums or onions because the little fuckers would have dug them all up and, as I mentioned, they have this “I don’t give a fuck” attitude to life a bit like Donald Trump so I think we would be a bit screwed.

Red squirrels however, they can take over. Introverted, keep themselves to themselves, look after themselves, I like those little guys.

Sidenote: The only grey squirrel I am truly fond of is the chap that rose to stardom thanks to treating the world to a full frontal nudity display on the Great British Bake off that one time. Utterly brilliant.

Squirrel from GBBO full frontal

11) If you could have anyone round for dinner, alive or dead, which 3 people would you choose? (NB – If you pick a dead person they would be alive during dinner – you wouldn’t just be dining with a corpse. That would be creepy)

Oh I am useless at these but maybe;

  1. Kit Harrington – he wouldn’t have to do much, just sit there and smoulder. Yep, I’m shallow like that. Cor he’s a bit of alright isn’t he?!

Kit Harrington

  1. Peter Kay – the guy cracks me up and also, on the surface, seems to be such a down to earth bloke. I could see myself being friends with Pete and would happily car share with him 😉
  2. Dave Grohl – The musician. The songwriter. The legend. The bands this dude has been in are incredible and he is also bloody hilarious. The stories he could tell you over dinner would probably blow your mind…and he would provide the best after dinner entertainment ever.

12) What is your favourite funny blog post ever (your own, or someone else’s)?

It has to be “Shit I don’t have time for” by Kirsty at Eeh, Bah, Mum. Kirsty hasn’t written on her blog for a while I don’t think but she was one of the first bloggers I discovered and I could immediately relate to her, and she is as funny as fuck. Literally, I have almost pissed my pants laughing at this woman’s writing and have definitely laughed out loud at inappropriate times because of something she has written. She is a comic genius, with a wicked and sarcastic sense of humour. Everything I aspire to…


So, that’s that then!

I am now going to nominate 3 of my fave bloggers to take part – please don’t feel you have to but I am tagging you anyway because you’re amazeballs!

The lucky winners (of nothing but a warm fuzzy feeling, a link from my blog and the nomination of doing some more work) are;

 Mummy Rules

Pink Pear Bear

The love of a Captain

You guys all know I think you’re fab and if you want to complete the questions just click here to visit the #YouHaveToLaugh site for the rules and the badge code. Please tag me in @lifeisknutts so that I can share the giggles too! Thanks again to the fantabulous Dawn at Rhyming with Wine for nominating me to take part and, if you have read to here, well bloody done because I have completely rambled on. Have a G&T on me.




Nappy Mishappy…

I’m going to write you a short little tale,

about a toddler who had a slight nappy fail.

I’m not making this up, it really did occur,

It’s a little effed up, I think you’ll concur…

One sunny morning, the toddler awoke,

he came waddling in like a big burly bloke.

His legs were all bowed, like he’d ridden a horse,

but he hadn’t for he’d only just woken, of course.

I looked at him baffled, he seemed very upset,

“What’s the matter my chap, is your nappy wet?”

“Poo poo!” he shouted whilst grabbing his bum,

Ah, the glamorous life of being a mum…

“It’s ok little man, mummy will help you,

don’t get upset about a little bit of poo”.

The toddler continued to grab at his nappy,

the poor little mite really wasn’t too happy…

I collected some wipes and sorted his clothes,

then steeled myself ready to cover my nose,

I undid the nappy, I was full of trepidation,

was I going to be greeted with another brown creation?

“Poo poo!” the toddler continued to shout,

“It’s ok little Ben, I’m sorting it out…”

As I open the nappy, to my complete surprise,

there isn’t a poo waiting before my eyes.

“What the fuck!” I exclaim, “what the hell is this?!”

“I was expecting a poo and a bit of piss!”

I’m not telling a lie, just picture the scene,

I’d only unearthed a sodding Lightening McQueen!

A Lightening McQueen was there in his nappy,

no wonder the poor little sod was unhappy!

A little piss sodden, but otherwise fine,

I used a few baby wipes to make it shine.

“How on earth did this get stuck in there my boy?

That’s not the best place to be hiding a toy!”

Ben cuddles his car and he smiles at me,

and there ends the tale of the nappy mishappy.

Truly folks.

Only in my world would one of my kids wake up at 6:15am and cry that they’ve done a poo, only for me to change them and find there is not in fact a shit in their nappy, but a toy car.

Thankfully, it would appear it was placed there by Ben as he was going to sleep and he had forgotten about it. Mr McQueen hadn’t passed through the littlest one’s digestive system – that would be some road trip, get writing that idea down post-haste Disney Pixar!

One to be saved for his 18th Birthday I think…