Tag Archives: lifestyle

The Twins Have Turned 6!

Apologies for my late blog post. It has been 4 weeks since my last blog and I confess this is purely due to a lack of time, lack of energy and lack of brain and humour capabilities. With the 6 weeks holidays two-thirds of a way through, I am starting to find myself incapable of stringing an adult conversation together, let alone make an attempt at writing a hopefully witty blog.

I love my kids, honestly I really do and even when us school parents (through gritted teeth) told each other on the last day of school that ‘we are really looking forward to spending time with the children’, I really meant it. However, 6 weeks is a long time for any family unit and rather than finding myself making up little ditties on my guitar like Julie Andrews in The Sound of Music, as I’d hoped, I instead feel that I am developing more similarities to Mrs Hannigan in Annie, grumbling under my breath about ‘little children’ whilst looking for bottles of Gin in my laundry basket.

But these are special days and no matter how many ‘she said, he said’ or ‘I’m bored/hungry/thirsty’ demands I have dealt with in my slightly manic sing-song voice these last few weeks, we have had fun too. I have crammed my calendar full of events to keep the kids occupied, in order for us to spend ‘quality time’ together and to encourage a separation period between the children and the Wii. I have also organised 3 birthday parties for our twins, yes 3 parties!

Our twins turned 6 on the 8th of August, yet we started their birthday celebrations on the 23rd July. The reason for this is that the 8th of August fell during our holiday to Norfolk so we had to engineer for them to see their friends and family prior to our week away.

Party 1:

The first party was held at a non air conditioned indoor play centre for kids, complete with many forms of airborne bacteria thanks to the masses of kids in a close environment. The day was the last day of school, non-uniform day, so I decided to book it straight from school. What I didn’t bargain for was it happened to be also the hottest day of the year so 10 sweaty overheated kids emerged from their classrooms before the party had even begun. The two hours consisted of the children running around like a bunch of crazed lemmings. My daughter adopted a high-pitched scream on every slide as other parents (including us) tutted at the out of control kid making the annoying noise as I tried to discreetly quieten her without being noticed. The twins enjoyed themselves and we ticked off the first of their celebrations with an amazing cake courtesy of my talented cake maker friend.

Their most excellent cake from my talented friend Anthea Scott. Please contact me for orders.

Their most excellent cake from my talented friend Anthea Scott.

Party 2:

This was a more sober affair, you probably thought I meant sombre but I was referring to the hip flasks me and hubby always take to a play centre (only joking). Anyway, round 2 gave our family members who were not coming on holiday the opportunity to swamp the twins with presents. I had given up on trying to persuade the twins to wait until their birthday to open their presents as it was still two weeks away! The party meant more cake, more presents, happy twins, party 2 ticked off.

Party 3:

As I mentioned in my previous blog (https://anounceofme.com/2013/05/19/my-neighbouring-set-of-not-so-desperate-housewives/) we have the benefit of neighbours who have also become our friends. As their children do not attend our kids school, nor are they a member of our family or will be coming to Norfolk with us, we had another birthday party for the twins. This was a BBQ, my hubby’s party of choice if ever we are at home, lots of presents, more cake, happy but confused twins asking me whether they are 5 or 6 as they can’t work it out. Must not do this again next year. Party 3 ticked off.

Lets all sing Happy Birthday again.....

The Twins 6th Birthday:

We had a lovely week away in North Norfolk with our parents which we all really enjoyed. And without trying to sound like ‘Kirstie and Phil’, the location was perfect, the cottage spacious and it was jolly splendid fun (that was the Kirstie bit). On the Thursday of our week away, it WAS the twins ACTUAL Birthday for REAL! We woke the little ones up, excitedly explained it was their Birthday to which they were not overly impressed about despite us decorating our temporary living room with balloons, banners and dishing out party poppers. Another Birthday to celebrate, obviously they soon got into the swing of it with the promise of more presents and cake. We also had arranged to take a boat ride off Blakeney Point to see wild seals, complete with our dog Chester and I even managed to persuade our Captain to lead another sing-song of Happy Birthday with all the passengers joining in, which a fellow tourist bizarrely filmed, whilst Chester growled at passing seals in the water.

Chester the sea dog.

Chester the sea dog.

It does feel very strange to say that our twins are now 6. It only seems like yesterday that I sat exhausted in my hospital postnatal bed, staring wide eyed at two little babies in two little plastic cots, feeling a mixture of excitement and sheer terror at the prospect of two babies to care for along with my then 3 year old son. But we survived…. just… but that is a whole other blog… Stay tuned for more and I promise it will be sooner than 4 weeks!


Little Ole Wine Drinker Me

Since my teen years December has been a big month for me. Not just because of Christmas and the festivities/work do’s/New Years Eve, but because it is also my birthday on the 19th. This isn’t a shameless plug for me to receive more presents, but just a way of me passing on a few tips for the party season from a former party girl who was always prepared for this busy month.

You should be dancing yeah!

You should be dancing yeah!

Don’t get me wrong I haven’t hung up my dancing shoes yet but just opted for a smaller heel, a thicker denier in my tights and a more appropriate skirt length. The stack of invitations for cool parties that I received in my 20s have now been replaced with invitations to Nativity plays, tickets for the Panto and the odd night out with friends. This odd night out is never a last minute thing, but takes a massive amount of organising with babysitters at a premium and everyone feeling a little bit half-hearted about spending money or making the effort to get ‘dolled up’.

The Teen Years

The Decembers of my teen years were filled with cheap booze that was either begged to be bought from older siblings with our naive tipple of choice being Thunderbird. Or something that we found in the back of our parents drink cabinets, normally a neglected bottle of Ouzo and resulted in a lot of hair holding and up-chucking between friends. Nights out were at random house parties which were organised after the parents had gone out, or local nightclubs both of which required either public transport or a lift from your Dad which reduced the glam factor a tad. Still, you didn’t need more than a few vodka and Coke’s to feel tipsy and by being an experimental smoker you didn’t really inhale, so the hangover was fairly minimal.

My Twenties

I started my 20s living in Brighton with one of my best friends. Following a fairly hedonistic summer living on a shoestring, I returned to London to start my career in the Media Industry. I worked at a newspaper and for a time I worked on a supplement covering the dotcom explosion of internet start-ups that were making millionaires overnight. These companies were splashing their massive budgets on extravagant parties that we were invited to every night of the week, if we could handle it. Each party meant free booze, free food and enough gimmicks to ensure they made the press the following day. At one party Boney M performed alongside roller skating barmaids squirting vodka into people’s mouths from Ghostbuster type get-ups. My Brighton bestie moved to Ibiza and opened a bar which became a regular holiday destination for me and my friends. But numerous nights out and non-relaxing holidays can take their toll on your health and bank balance. I had more plastic in my wallet than Barbie and as I approached my late 20s and found my fella, I was ready to slow things down a bit in the name of starting a family.

The more sedate thirties

I will be 37 this December and as much as that makes me say the number in a questioned tone, as I really don’t think like a 37-year-old, I am fine with it. Having spent my early 30s knee-deep in nappies and formula, nights out were extremely rare. They were often a fine line between me and my friends binge drinking our way through too much wine just because we had a night off from bottle feeding our babies, or instead consisted of us giving up on trying to tame the crazed look of a mother on the edge and resulted in us heading to the cinema to eat our body weight in Ben & Jerry’s. With my twins now 5 and my eldest approaching 9, my late 30s have meant that we now have more babysitter options and more opportunity for nights out. Me and my friends still have that feeling of having escaped a secure facility, but quite often we can pick a decent bottle of vino, partake in soft drinks alongside alcoholic ones and with hangovers stretching out over at least two days now, a nice meal or trip to the theatre is much more enticing than it used to be.

So my 5 points of advice this December would be;

1. Try and remember how bad hangovers really are when any type of shot is suggested during the evening.
2. If you are invited to a party, don’t dress like a parent who doesn’t get out much – no Xmas themed outfits, novelty earrings and if it is a house party, still wear shoes and resist the urge to take slippers or pad about in your socks.
3. Keep it light, don’t be a whinge-drinker or an over-sharer. A few vinos and some women feel the need to go into every gory detail about their marriage/childbirth/financial situation. This is a rare night out, much nicer to indulge in a bit of ‘stars in bars’ instead.
4. Think carefully about whether to update your Facebook status after too many drinks, this also applies to uploading photos of you and your friends doing your ‘sexy pout’, it often isn’t sexy but instead looks like you might have Bells Palsy.
5. Make sure you surround yourself with the people who make you laugh until there is no sound coming out, when a look between you can convey everything you want to say and you wake up the next day not filled with regret but with a big smile on your face.

Happy December !