The Diary of a Never Off Duty Mama

New Year’s Resolutions Will Start in February!  

I’ve taken a mañana approach to New Year’s Resolutions this year. I was pumped full of good intentions pre-Christmas, my life was finally going to be worthy of a ‘How to…’ article on being a super-organised mum. But then, well, Peaky Blinders happened. My plans for Mama Life London world domination were put on hold while I binge watched Thomas Shelby of an evening and suffered constant wonderings of whether he really is a good man I could run away with despite his violent tendencies. So the three things I managed to tick off my to do list for January were watching Season 1 (tick), Season 2 (tick) and Season 3 (tick). 

“Wow, your skin looks amazing.”

Was what I imagined everyone would say to me by February. My skin was going to take on a new, amazing glow which I believed would be down to clean eating. However despite my best efforts, the fact that my darling son stopped me mid-conversation to tell me I have spots all over my forehead has only confirmed my suspicion that the main cause of my youthful looking skin (and by youthful I mean a teenager in the throws of puberty) is my sleep, or lack of it, and the COIL!! Only two people can be blamed for this, and that’s the sprogs I spawned. Therefore it looks like sending them back to the stork is on the cards again. I haven't decided what to do about the dreaded COIL. It has a lot of pros thrown in with lots of cons. 

"Urgh! That tiny piece of broccoli is too big mummy."

Dramatic scenes continue far too regularly at the dinner table with one child often going on hunger strike while the other takes every opportunity to escape and peg it from the table. Duplo Lego, Lego, colouring, threats and bribes have all been used to little or no effect. So I have resided to the fact that unless I put the TV on at the dinner table my children are unruly, but will hopefully grow out of the “phase” (Phase, noun: the word we use to describe every single thing our children do that we either can’t cope with or don’t like). My husband joined us all for dinner the other night and decided to apply some foot down behaviour management. He too conceded our children are unruly and took himself off to a dark, quiet room. 

"MUMMY!...MUMMY!...QUICK!"

Solo trips to the toilet are starting to become more frequent, however occurrences of being called from the toilet to whichever room my children are in while mid-flow are on the increase. Urgent shouts of “MUMMY!! MUMMEEEEE!!!” have prompted quick wipe and goes, only to dash into the room with my cape flowing behind me to realise the SOS call was over their programme coming to an end or one taking a toy off the other. Qualifying my reasons to repeatedly wear my Never Off Duty tee and hoodie. 

The return of school also meant my son’s back chat went up a notch compared to the lovely, sweet boy he was over Christmas. However, threats have worked quite nicely on this particular behaviour issue. One that’s always a winner is the threat to remove or ban every device that brings any joy to his life i.e. the iPad! Without this bargaining tool I’m pretty certain my parenting would be powerless. I have a bitter sweet relationship with the iPad, I can flit between “I hate the iPad, it’s like crack to them!’ to (at 6.15am on a Sunday morning) “Here have my phone darling. Thank god for iPhones! Thank god it’s fully charged. Thank god they don’t talk, ask questions or move when they’re on the iPhone so I can fall in and out of consciousness for another hour. I’m finally winning at life!” 

My London brother came for a visit. He loved play fighting with the kids, until he had enough. Kids never have enough of play fighting. He soon came to realise this after several attempts to draw the play to a close. The children continued to jump, wrestle, hit and blow raspberries at him, until he went for the only thing that is certain to divert their attention within a nano second. The iPad! They have their uses. 

"Quick! Somebody, GRAB THE iPAD!" 

February I will get my act together. February is the month for world domination and super-organised mum. Just one more season of Thomas Shelby, I mean Peaky Blinders, to catch up on and then I can focus on new designs for Mama Life London merch that doesn’t include Mama Life embroided flat caps or engraved Crystal Whisky Glasses.