Monday, May 26, 2008


You know, if you are a parent, you are damned if you do, and damned if you don't! If you discipline your children publicly with any kind of harshness you are likely to become the recipient of tuts, stares and reprimanding. If you discipline the way I like to, with quiet explanation, firmness and calmness, you receive the type of abuse I am going to talk about and are blamed for not disciplining your children - you can't win!

On Friday, I "shouted" at an old lady? Do I feel bad - no not one iota!

Friday was grandparent's day at the mini Beehive's school. My mum had flown in from the UK the night before for a very highly anticipated trip. The children were very excited, in particular LMB. During the morning, her grandmother had spent time in her classroom. After the event we decided to round it off with lunch at a "family friendly" restaurant.

Within a few minutes of sitting down I could hear the elderly lady behind me talking in a very loud voice to her companions about the state of the US, how universities are just full of foreigners, children are undisciplined blah blah- you have probably heard this type of conversation several times in your own lives, so I won't bore you.

I just inwardly smiled and ignored it.

Little Miss Beehive was very tired, and was being acting up more because of that. She had had a morning in school with her grandmother and no recess to expel the energy. She liked to look in the mirror next to us, that involved standing on the seat. I explained on more than one occasion that she needed to sit. However, the restaurant was busy, the service wasn't as fast as we hoped, but she was being quiet, just bouncy. This bouncyness btw, had no impact on the diners, she didn't bother anyone other than me and I was coping fine with it.

At one point, she decided to go to the bathroom (this was the second exodus to go!) She got down and mum went with her and I noticed she had no shoes on, so I called after mum to take them.

It was at this point that the elderly lady behind me said in a very loud voice - "Dreadful behaviour, such unruly children, this is what I mean....."

I turned and stared at her in disbelief.

She continued to her cronies.

"I think she heard me."

I am afraid I turned around, the red mist came down.........

"Too right I heard you! I object to sitting here listening to you talking about my children like that when you know NOTHING about us. Keep your opinions to yourself!"

She did, however, I was shaking by then. I couldn't eat my lunch.

What IS it with some elderly people that they think that THAT kind of behaviour is any the less unruly, rude or dreadful than a three year old running to a bathroom without shoes???
Little Miss Beehive is three, she has had three years to become well behaved, well mannered and polite, she isn't perfect, but she is getting there. This old bat, has had seventy plus years to achieve this and still hasn't managed it.........hmmmmm, I wonder who was the more unruly and ill mannered???

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Public apology!

What do they call them in the UK? The spin doctors? The person who manages to put a spin on a story to cover up the crap? Well, I unfortunately don't have one of my own so have to cover my own doggy doo!! However, I do have a certain small person who is delightfully good at landing me in the doo doo!

Her trick today was thanks to her advanced fine motor skills. She is, as we know and as her teacher has told us, pretty good at holding a pencil. Unfortunately for us, this skill extends (don't ask me how!) to an accute ability to control a mouse on a computer.

This afternoon I was sent an e-mail from a teacher at school, inviting me to some or other social network shenanigans, when I opened the mail, it took me to a page where upon the whole, yes, the WHOLE of my address book was in front of me, some 180 odd persons. All the little boxes were pre-checked off. Then, as per the best story tales, the phone rang and I was distracted............. well you can pretty much guess the rest.

Little Miss Beehive is responsible for sending the 180+ emails today inviting you to that same social network thang - that I have yet to investigate. I think she pressed the continue button and the rest is history!

I am very sorry, she is not, she thinks it is funny, I do not! We are working through this with therapy (of the bubble bath and wine kind - well I am, she is not!)

So - warning to all out there! Do not leave your three year old unattended by a computer even for a nano second - or else, your doo doo will be all over t'interweb!

This was a public announcement brought to you in deep embarrassment by the long suffering parent of Little Miss Beehive. We thank you for your understanding!

Monday, May 19, 2008

Who are you, and what have you done with my kids?

Very occasionally I cross over into the twighlight zone. This morning was one of those moments and I just have to share it with you.

This morning, it was the birds that gently brought me to full consciousness, not a child, not an alarm, not even a snoring husband. It was 6am, the start of a new school week and everywhere was quiet and calm. I checked the mattress to see if LMB had done her usual trick but not woken me, but her space was empty.

I got up, answered my e-mails, went about the start of my day in a leisurely way, the way I have dreamed about in my wildest dreams, but am not expecting much before the children are teens and thus incapable of getting up in the morning before noon!

En route to the bathroom I met Mr Beehive the younger who greeted me with a smile and asked politely if he could use the shower after me.......

By 6.30 I thought I ought to waken Mr Beehive the elder and LMB.

LMB awoke, smiling and handed me her nighttime pacifier without me asking for it and without the normal tussle we have to extricate it from her cakehole!

By now there was a feeling of calm radiating my body........what was the day to hold? It is warm, sunny, blue sky, birds singing.

Mr Beehive the elder was downstairs and doing something extremely strange - he was holding the scoop for the dog's food and putting food in his bowl..........without being asked!! This is indeed such a rare occurrence, normally, despite the chore chart, feeding the dog is apparently the epitomy of the job chart - they would rather dust and hoover ???!!!!

By now I was floating on something extremely weird. The morning thus far has continued on a similar vein, children being considerate and gracious to each other, sharing, helping each other without discussion.........................there has yet to be a raised voice............???????!!!!!!!!!!!

So, I am going to seize the moment, my sacred space, and go to yoga this morning after drop off.......continue the peace. .........after all, tomorrow will be a new day and good things don't last!!!

Thursday, May 15, 2008

One, Two , Three, Foo-foo!!

It's not the terrible two's and don't let anyone tell you otherwise. It is most definitely the terrible threes. Who would think that this:

Could turn into this:

in just three wee years?

Little Miss Beehive's favourite hobby at the moment is a real toss up between staring me out when I ask her not to do something, or giving me the mother of all tantrums if I then proceed to remove the offending article or stop her from doing what she wishes to do.

This week her mounting crimes are:

  • Pouring invisible ink all over her brother's bed (which, when met with blue linen, actually isn't invisible at all, but stains yellow ............. somewhat like cat's piss!)

  • Colouring in my lambskin rug with fluorescent marker!!!!!

  • Letting the dog out of the garden gate!!

  • Finding the Q-Tips under the bathroom sink and using them for cleaning not only her orifices but also the floor under the toilet, unfortunately I am non the wiser as to the order of these occurences!!!

  • Removing most of the sand from the sand box to the patio and then mixing it with water from the hose to create a mud mess for me to clean up.

  • Inserting the remaining sand into her foo-foo whilst sitting naked in it!!

Most of this she managed just this afternoon!

I totally despair as she just finds everything extremely funny and has a manipulative way of creasing her little dimples and making me laugh too - which isn't the point!!!!

So this evening was not the most pleasant of tasks ensuring that her sandy elements were suitably sand free after she complained of itching and scratchyness in her nether regions! I would like to say this has hopefully taught her that there are better holes to fill with her sandpit but..............this is LMB we are talking about and tomorrow is another day with 12 more hours to fill with mischief !

Friday, May 09, 2008

Living in a Surreal World.

I think my life has hit an all time high at the moment!!!

Today I have found myself teetering somewhere close to the twighlight zone:
  • I have been offered monkey porn by an old school friend - fresh porn too I hasten to add, none of the cheap nasty stuff - some that he has himself directed and produced..........okay I suppose, as long as it is accompanied by good quality music and none of that Bowwowchiccawowwow stuff!

  • I have reached an all time low with regards to things I never thought I would find myself saying when I asked Mr Beehive the younger to pass me his pants this evening so I could smell them to see if they were clean or not!!!!!!!! OMG - I have a university degree - what happened????

  • I have given up with my ongoing saga with Little Miss Beehive's hair when this morning I was trying desperately to force hairclips into this matted mess only for her to tell me, when I asked what it was: "it's milk and butter..........I love milk and butter in my hair, it's so.............nice!!". Well, who am I to argue, the milk worked for Cleopatra, but did the drugs!!!

So this weekend is Mother's Day in the US and I am on my own!!! Well, not entirely, I have a small swarm of mini Bees to entertain me and LOOOOOOTS of rain, but Mr Beehive has gone to the UK to look at houses! We have just (tentatively) sold our house in the UK and I, in my infinite wisdom, am trusting him, with his sensible head, to go and find me a new one!
As my sis so kindly pointed out this evening - better him than me, as I always manage to come home with the runt of the litter whenever I go out. I prefer to say that I see potential in a property, bedraggled cat/dog, rusted old car, whereas Mr Beehive tend to think with his wallet!

Well, I like to have faith, it ain't failed me yet!

Ach well, I guess I have a few pints of milk, some butter and a nice piece of monkey porn to keep me going - Moms Rock!!!

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Here comes the sun, Here comes the sun.......

I can't believe that we are only three full school weeks away from the start of the summer vacation! It doesn't seem five minutes since the snow was on the ground and we were wishing some heat, now, it is upon us and planning has started.

We don't have the usual 6 week vacation like we would do in the UK, instead we have between 12 and 13 weeks break!!!! This takes a lot of planning to ensure that everyone is only partially bored lol, no one goes stir crazy (particularly me!), arguing is at a minimum, the beach is at a maximum and school work doesn't completely go by the wayside.

Each holiday the children pick a topic that they want to study. Last year they researched Arizona and The Grand Canyon and this year we are going to look at Mexico. I try to find activities that are related to that: music, games, arts and crafts as well as other more "schooly" activities such as math and language work. Fortunately, the kids tend to choose a project that comes from one of our jaunts, so we are able to do lots of "hands on" learning. In fact, Master Beehive the elder, will be our voice when we go to Mexico in the summer as he is the only one who can speak more than three tourist phrases of Spanish! Both the boys will keep a journal, as they always do when we go on a holiday and they will probably want to add to their scrap books over the summer too.

I find the best way to handle this huge amount of time, is to set a rhythm to each day, so we tend to start off leisurely, with some "lessons or crafts" around 10ish for an hour or maybe two, then we will do chores, laundry, gardening, baking or meal prep etc. Then the afternoons we like to go to the beach, visit a museum or two, go to the library, have playdates and generally hang out. The kids are also intermittently going to a variety of camps for an hour or two some days or, a whole day one week! They are going to be going on a nature camp, drama camp, Master Beehive the elder is going on a film making course for two weeks (mornings only) and tennis camp. Hopefully this won't over fill their days, but will put something in here and there that wears a different face to Mummy! I also hope to take them up to the Cape to stay with our good friends for a weekend and I may try to squeeze a weekend in the UK in August if things go ahead with our house buying back in the UK.

I hope that the weeks will be fun and energising with them, with plenty of time for relaxing, enjoying friends, celebrating a birthday or two and travelling. Trying to find a good balance isn't as easy as it seems with three of differing ages either!

Of course, I need to get my sweet dumb blonde head out of the cuckoo land clouds that I have them wedged in and remember that interspersed with all this is going to probably be lots of hot, sweaty beached-out three year old and thirty six year old tantrums, eight and nearly six year old spats and confrontations with mama about why they can't practise their tennis strokes against the lounge window or use their racquets as sibling swats, lots of room re-decoration and reorganization from LMB (and I am having a rather deluded thought about just letting her get on with it for the whole 12 weeks and then just do one clean up of her room at the end to save my knees- but I don't think I will be able to find her after week 2!) and probably one or two disagreements over my well thought out and regimented routine for the days, but through these rose tinted specs - I'd say our summer looks pretty lush right now.

So here's to a nice crisp Chardonnay on the terrace (ho ho!) Cheers!

Saturday, May 03, 2008

Drowning in Pink!!!

Today we have been PINK!

In fact, we have been Pinkalicious!!! If you can imagine an auditorium full of girls, all dressed in as much pink as their little bodies could physically withstand and decked with enough pink jewels, from tiaras to rings and necklaces to outdo even the worst dressed Oscar attendee, then you'd be close! You will probably be pretty amazed to know that young Miss Beehive actually had little pink bling!!!

A local Breast Cancer Charity was holding a musical event based on the kid's book Pinkalicious to raise funds and can I say now, as a disclaimer......I am really glad it was for a great charity and am very happy and keen to support and what I am about to say has nowt at all to do with the Breast Cancer Organisation, but to do with the fact that kids activities (in general as we have discovered a lot recently!) are not always that well thought through from the kids' perspectives - ok, so that said......

Well, this has become one of Little Miss Beehive's most favourite books ever since she had it bought for her some months the point she can recit it and tells me when I do the naughty trick of trying to speed read and miss out bits 'cos I......Am.....So....Bleedin'......Bored of it now!

So naturally, being the kind mama I am, thought she would love to see it as a musical.

We took our friends along to it. These friends were innocent and untouched by the snare of Pinkititis until today. For that, Claire, Heather, I apologise profusely! Well, ever since we knew we had tickets I have had her asking is it now, is it today, is it in a minute, is it this year?????

So, back to this neon pink room full of all shades of pink -magenta, fuschia, pale pink, peach pink, lurid bright pink, shocking pink, salmon pink, Pink Popsicle, Marshmallow Bunny, and Tickled Pink.......add to that, high energy fever and some pink made you realise why the colour so often associated with hell is red.............cos it is so feckin' close to pink!!

After the show - (imagine lots of adults pretending to be children, the recorded music coming through the same speaker as the singers, thus drowning them out, and several seriously off pitch notes.....yeah I know I am a mean old critic, but you had to be three to appreciate it in its full catawauling!!) - there was an "after show party" - for the kids. the end of the show, most of the under fives had had it. They needed to eat! So Claire and I sought out the queue for the pink cupcakes (what the heck - why not?!) only to discover that in the infinite wisdom of the organisers, there was one person selling these to a room of 650 people, of which we were round about number 356 and 7!!! Needless to say, we had to play mean mothers again and remove our now melted wrecks of daughters (particularly mine, she is somewhat partial to her snacks at the exact time of day and woe betide if you cannot produce!) from not only the lengthening queue but also the small room in which they had chosen to squash us all for eating, face painting, craft activities, nail polishing and meeting the cast.....................
I do seriously wonder if when these things are organised for kids, the organisers ever actually associate the fact that there will really, truly be children at the event? It should be set up so that there is:
  • more haste involved in the food department ie: more than one person who doesn't understand American currency, can count past 10 or can even see the money, on the till would be a start or, better still, someone stuffing a cupcake into each child's mouth as they leave the auditorium!!!
  • more space in the craft activity department, so you actually go home with a craft on paper, rather than the remnants of someone else's on your clothing from when you tried to breathe in and squeeze past for the umpteenth time while trying to find a: the food, b: your child, c: the bathroom or d: a combination of all them.
  • more than one person doing the activities such as face painting or nail polishing that takes at least 5 minutes per child, so therefore creating a queue out of the door and, after the food queue are always the longest!
  • And moving activities that involve long queues ie: food and face painting into separate rooms from each other so that mothers are not scrapping with each other in front of their kids 'cos Sydnie was in front of Priscilla in the food queue, but actually Priscilla thought she was in the nail painting queue but this wasn't discovered until several clumps of hair have been won by each team!

Right! Now I need to detox myself from this horrific experience. Apparently, according to my pals, I still have "The American Girl Doll" experience to look forward to............Woo Hoo..............can't wait


Thursday, May 01, 2008

Auction Fever!!


Phew, thanks for allowing me to do that.

This week has been getting crazier by the hour. It is auction countdown at the little Beehive's school and for some really bizarre reason - obviously I enjoyed myself too much last year - I agreed to head up the Item Management team this year.

Probably doesn't sound such a big deal, but basically it comprises of writing up all the 370+ items we get into a huge mega catalog, ensuring all donor details are recorded for thank yous, compile bidder boards and sheets and make sure that all the physical items and gift certificates are stored and cataloged correctly so we know exactly where they are - phew - it exhausts me just thinking about it. Pretty much, if there is a fuck up, it is going to lead back to me in some shape or form - stress? Much!

On top of that I am working on Thursday mornings at the Waldorf school and also doing Postpartum support for one of my clients during the evenings or whenever I have some free time -oh god, my sides nearly split laughing then!

The hardest part of this, however, hasn't been the juggling of jobs and responsiblity, it has been the entertainment of Little Miss Beehive, who, has been doled out to various friends to the point of pushing friendship boundaries and trying on other afternoons to work and have her play around me.

LMB is not low energy!

Gosh, how I snort at that statement. She is of MY gene pool, has ants seriously embedded in her knickers and was born under the incorrect star sign - she needed to be an aries, rather than the scorpio she is.

She fills a room with her energy and free spiritedness, which one day will be a wonderful asset that I need to focus on, but for the meantime, she knows exactly how to push boundaries to their absolute extreme and in the course of the past few weeks has drawn on the walls (shh!) the table (shh!), eaten the chocolate that belongs to my team (this must be a huge shhhh, they need the chocolate to function!) and run up and down the quiet Montessori school halls giggling loudly more than a zillion times.
There was no concern about me not making the gym enough times over the time we have been doing this. As one of the assistants told me today;
I amuse her (yes, note the "I") so much as she sees the young version whizz like road runner down the corridor squealing with delight as I try to gain composure and control and head off after her, slowly at first trying not to bring attention to this, and then at breakneck speed as she refuses to come back to my calls!

I then pick her up or hold her hand, explain in my best "Montessori voice" how this is unacceptable and the other children need to work with quiet in the halls and she is disrupting that lead her back to the room where we are working, sigh, sit down, move my mouse and realise she has gone - again........and so this game continues - ALL AFTERNOON!!!!!!!!

This terrorising continues from my children later as I pick them all up from late day and the Little Miss is still in hyper mode (despite having two hours playing outside on the playground - you'd think that'd wear her out!), Master Beehive the elder is away with the fairies as he continually chats from the moment I pick him up until i put food in his gob at home.....he doesn't even care that I am talking to Master Beehive the younger at this point, who is in meltdown mode because I am the nastiest mother on the planet and won't allow him to have chewing gum, and is thus hollering and wailing and crying at the top of his voice...........

As we leave, a parent is sitting with his daugher, calmly on a bench outside. LMB marches over to the daughter and introduces herself.
The daughter sweetly smiles back and says that she knows who she is........................

...............yeah baby! Your reputation goes before you!!!!!!!