Saturday, August 31, 2013

Just A Little Story About Magic

Sometimes things happen so perfectly you wonder whether maybe if there is a little magic in the world.

The Bombshell and I were home alone.

A reminder on my mobile phone buzzed. I had it randomly set to a small chime. I heard it but didn’t acknowledge it: it was a reminder to me to get the spring decorations ready for the fairy garden. I wasn’t going to ruin the surprise for the Bombshell who was colouring at the table.

Her head popped up.

‘Mum, did you hear that?’ she asked.

‘Hear what,’ I asked innocently.

She turned to me, eyes wide.

‘I think a fairy just talked in my ear,’ she said conspiratorially.

‘I didn’t hear anything,’ I said.

‘It WAS! A fairy just spoke to me, it sounded like bells,’ she said sighing.

‘I wonder what she said?’ I asked.

She bounded up from her chair. ‘I think she wants me to look at the Fairy Garden,’ she said.

My heart sank a little, the Fairy Garden was a bit of a mess. The ribbons and garlands we had hung a few months ago were bedraggled and broken. I had new ones to put out tomorrow, but today it was a bit sad.

The Bombshell stood in front of the window, staring at the Fairy Garden.

‘Mum,’ she whispered in a low voice. ‘You have to see this. It definitely was a message from the fairies.’

I stood behind her, and sitting on top of the Fairy ‘bedroom’ was a little bird.

Picture perfect, a message from the fairies.

It made me believe in magic.

Friday, August 30, 2013

Dad Jokes (by a 6 year old)

On the way to school today the Bombshell was regaling us with typical six year old humour. She was making stuff up as she went along and it was reminiscent of what you might call a ‘Dad joke’.

At least it was less embarrassing than her last joke attempt.

‘Mum,’ she started. ‘Why did the crocodile paint his toenails purple?’

I racked my brain because even though it sounded vaguely familiar, I couldn’t remember the punch line. I guess that would have spoiled it anyway.

‘I don’t know, why did the crocodile paint his toenails purple?’

‘Because he wanted to hide in the raspberry bush.’

Before I could point out that raspberries were red she had launched into her next joke.

‘Why did the elephant paint his toenails red?’

I was ready this time.

‘Because he wanted to hide in the strawberry patch?’ I answered glibly.

‘No, because he wanted to climb the apple tree without the policeman seeing him.’

She cackled uproariously which set the other two off, and I had to join in.
Whether or not it made any sense, the image of an elephant with red toenails hiding up a tree from the law was good enough for me, and at least she wasn't joking about the baby being dead.

Happy Fathers’ Day guys.


Tuesday, August 6, 2013

The Prize for the Most Inappropriate Conversation Goes to...

I was cuddled up in bed with the Bombshell and it struck me that these days were numbered.

'You know,' I told her, 'one day you will be too old for me to snuggle in bed and you won't want to be my friend anymore.'

'Don't be silly,' she told me stroking my hair. 'I will always want you to be my friend. You're the best mum ever.'

How I wish that were true, I thought.

'One day you will suddenly grow up and you will bring home some deadbeat boys and I will tell you "No, don't marry these deadbeats". She started laughing.

'But then one day you will bring home a really lovely boy, and I will tell you how wonderful he is, but you will then dump him immediately because if Mum likes him, then there must be something wrong with him,' I continued.

She was watching me, utterly transfixed.

'But then you will bring home a nice boy who you will really like and I will really like, but I will stay quiet, and you will get married.'

She sat up in the bed. 'Tell me about the deadbeats again.'

'What? Why?' I said, suddenly wondering what on earth I was doing. Being inappropriate as usual.

'Because it's so funny, me going out with the deadbeats. Tell it again.'

And so I did. I told her about the deadbeats, and the nice boys she will dump because her parents like him too much, and then finally, meeting the right guy. She laughed and laughed. We both did, but all the time I was thinking that this was a woefully inappropriate conversation to have with a six year old, and that I really need SuperNanny or Nanny McPhee or someone to step in and stop me before I said something really dumb.

When she finally stopped laughing and we caught our breath, she peered into my face and said 'Mum, why are you telling me all this?'

I don't know, I said. I really don't know.

What inappropriate things have you told your kids?

Monday, August 5, 2013

Weetbix, No Shame and the Teenaged Boy

Today was my first day back at uni. Naturally, just as I stepped out of the car it had poured down with rain. Naturally, as a mother and a mature-aged student I was the only person with an umbrella.

Everyone else was too cool for umbrellas.
As this story will show, I am not too cool for anything.
Before long the tutor asked us to get into groups to discuss the readings. Very few of us had actually done the readings, and even fewer understood them. I had good intentions and certainly eyeballed them, but when faced with this:

Few Platonic moments are better known in literary studies today, but copious
deconstructive attention to its metaphysical thematics registers little of the ethical
force of Plato’s argument, nor does it unearth the questions of signature which implicitly
 guide the equation of discursive responsibility with the presence of the subject.

I must admit I felt my eyes begin to wander, just a little…


But because I had technically done the readings, I was moved to sit with a group of young guys, possibly in their early twenties but more likely in their late teens.

The angle I was sitting at meant I needed to use my peripheral vision, but there was something obstructing my view. So I took off my glasses to rub my eyes. Nope, the blur was still there.
So I looked inside my glasses.

And plastered in a chunk the size of a five cent piece, was solidified Weetbix, obscuring the lens and caked like concrete around the rim.

What else should I do –I began to chip it out with my fingernail.

Then I realised that one of the guys was watching me with a look that nicely blended disgust and incredulity.
‘Weetbix,’ I whispered. ‘My baby put it there.’

He nodded weakly and nudged his chair away from me.
I remember exactly when Baldy did it. She had been eating with her hands as usual, and as I crouched down near her high chair to clean the larger chunks of the floor she had reached over and grabbed a bunch of my hair, then pulled off my glasses. I ran shrieking to the Bombshell, handing her a brush and asking her to brush it out of my hair.

‘I’ll do my best,’ she said gamely.

I later went to get dressed, and changed my glasses - rather vainly - to match the dress I was planning on wearing. No one would have even noticed the switch in glasses, but it did give the Weetbix ample time to solidify nicely before I changed glasses again a few days later.

Later that night, after I had been to the art gallery and dinner with friends (and school drop off and pick up and playgroup and the shops), I came home, had a quick shower and got ready for bed. When my brush got stuck in my hair I attempted to look at the top of my head in the mirror.

The Bombshell hadn’t brushed it all out and I had been walking around all day with a chunk of chewed up cereal in my hair.
Three days later, and the Weetbix was still haunting me.

So this was how I began my first day back at uni: encrusted, unashamed and with wet feet.

I wonder what will happen next week?
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