Friday Frolics – 22nd July 2016

Welcome to Friday Frolics, the linky with the giggles. Friday Frolics is hosted by myself, Claire at Life, Love and Dirty Dishes, and Emma at Island Living 365. It’s the place to link up your funny posts and snort your tea whilst enjoying some others.

This week Friday Frolics will be hosted by Claire and myself, as Emma is taking a short break.

Thank you so much to everyone who linked up last week. We had a plethora (I’m using big and clever words these days to befit my new linky co-host role) of hilarious posts.

 
Friday Favourites

My favourite post from last week: Mummy Muckups – Snot Funny.
Hilarious account of the trauma we’ve all endured when our kid is THAT kid. The one who won’t leave playgroup peacefully.

Claire’s favourite post: ‘Mumzilla – The Grades of Embarrassment. I laughed and cringed in equal measure. Especially the Barber shop one.’

Emma’s favourite post: ‘Absolutely Prabulous – First Case of Exhausted Mother Reported as School Year Ends. Schools have broken up for the summer, and the kids are tired but giddy. But what about the parents? Tired mums (and dads) everywhere will be able to relate to this classic post by Prabs. A great example of a ‘viral’ post. It’s hilarious!’

 
If you missed these posts last week, do check them out – guaranteed a laugh.

Friday Favourites writers: Please feel free to grab the Featured Blogger badge below.

 

R is for Hoppit

 
 
I am looking forward to all the fun and frolics, but first for a couple of serious bits.

The Rules:

1. Make us laugh! Friday Frolics is all about the funny, so please no reviews, or how to make a finger puppet (unless, of course, they are hilarious).

2. Include the Friday Frolics badge in the post that you are linking. If you do not include the badge, you will not be eligible to feature as a Friday Favourite.

3. Comment on one of each of the hosts’ posts, and at least one other post for every post you link up. Share the fun people! Use #FridayFrolics when you comment on posts so people can see where you are linking from.

4. You can link up to 2 posts, old or new.

 
Other Stuff:

By joining this linky, you consent to receiving e-mails from me about Friday Frolics.

Follow us on twitter and tweet your links to @lifeloveanddd @sillymummy88 using #FridayFrolics for a RT.

The Linky will open at 8pm on Thursday evening, and close at 11pm on Sunday.

 
Now, on with the linky…

 

R is for Hoppit

 
 

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Nominations for the Mumsnet Blogging Awards 2016 are open until 31st July. If you find me at all amusing, I would love nominations in the Best Comic Writer category. Nominating is very simple by following the link above. Thank you for reading my shameless begging.

Toddler Rules of Grammar (Toddler Lessons: Part Eight)

51551bc6f8ec618e2d4a16f583e4019fIt is Toddler Lessons: Part Eight, and we are learning the toddler rules of grammar.

 
1. Interjections

Interjections are good. Toddlers use them as much as possible. In order to add that element of intrigue and suspense, toddlers like to use certain interjections – ‘oh dear’ and ‘oops’, mostly – with no further clarification, leaving nearby adults desperately trying to work out what the toddler has done/broken.

 
2. Pronouns

Pronouns are an all or nothing deal in toddler grammar. Initially, they should not be used at all. However, once introduced into the vocabulary, it is entirely acceptable to construct entire sentences out of just pronouns: ‘Hello, Mummy. The Baby thought you were you, but you’re not you, you’re you.’ Anyone who tells you this is a risky and confusing strategy should be ignored.

 
3. Superlative Adjectives

In toddler grammar, all adjectives are superlative. Preferably, the superlative adjectives used should be words that are not entirely correct, at least in formal English, like ‘bestest’ and ‘favouritest’. In order to make the superlative even more superlative, it is good practice to also add ‘most’. It is a matter of personal choice, of course, but this is the most bestest way to do it.

 
4. Double Negatives

There is nothing wrong with a double negative. Indeed, if possible, negatives should be triple or even quadruple: ‘I don’t never want to not never take it back.’

 
5. Subject-Verb Agreement

Subject-verb agreement is seldom reached in toddler grammar. In fact, as with all areas of toddler life, there is a fair amount of disagreement between subjects and verbs. The subject and the verb are probably having a fight about who was playing with the adjective first.

 
6. Dependent Clauses

Dependent clauses can absolutely stand alone in toddler grammar: ‘Because of marmalade.’ There is really no need to bother with the part of the sentence that the clause was dependent on: people will work it out.

 
7. Conjunctions

It is, of course, a myth that a sentence cannot start with a conjunction. However, the toddler assertion that a sentence can end with a conjunction is more controversial: ‘Mummy, I was going to play with my bus, but.’ It is also perfectly permissible in toddler grammar to use conjunctions to join other conjunctions: ‘Mummy, when but but and and then so!’

 
8. Relative Clauses

In toddler grammar, defining relative clauses are avoided, as it just does not do to go around giving people essential information that they need in order to understand what is going on. Non-defining relative clauses, on the other hand, those providing information we just did not actually need, can go on for three years.

 
 

(Please Note: I apologise for any grammatical errors that may have appeared in this post about grammar. It was written by a toddler.)

 
 
You can see other posts in my Toddler Lessons series here

 
 
Nominations for the
Mumsnet Blogging Awards 2016 are open until 31st July. If you find me at all amusing, I would love nominations in the Best Comic Writer category. Nominating is very simple by following the link above. Thank you for reading my shameless begging.

Friday Frolics – 15th July 2016

Welcome to Friday Frolics, the linky with the giggles. Friday Frolics is hosted by myself, Claire at Life, Love and Dirty Dishes, and Emma at Island Living 365. It’s the place to link up your funny posts and snort your tea whilst enjoying some others.

Yes, I am very excited to be announcing that I am now a co-host of Claire’s fantastic Friday Frolics linky. As a committed writer of utter silliness, Friday Frolics has always been the perfect linky for me, and I couldn’t be happier to be involved.

Here’s hoping the hilarity continues to come only from all your funny posts, and not from my utter incompetence at co-hosting a linky, but I make no guarantees.

 
 
I am looking forward to all the fun and frolics, but first for a couple of serious bits.

The Rules:

1. Make us laugh! Friday Frolics is all about the funny, so please no reviews, or how to make a finger puppet (unless, of course, they are hilarious).

2. Include the Friday Frolics badge in the post that you are linking. If you do not include the badge, you will not be eligible to feature as a Friday Favourite.

3. Comment on one of each of the hosts’ posts, and at least one other post for every post you link up. Share the fun people! Use #FridayFrolics when you comment on posts so people can see where you are linking from.

4. You can link up to 2 posts, old or new.

 
Other Stuff:

By joining this linky, you consent to receiving e-mails from me about Friday Frolics.

Follow us on twitter and tweet your links to @lifeloveanddd @sillymummy88 and @islandliving365 using #FridayFrolics for a RT.

The Linky will open at 8pm on Thursday evening, and close at 11pm on Sunday.

 
Now, on with the linky…

 

R is for Hoppit

 
 

 Loading InLinkz ...

 
 
Nominations for the Mumsnet Blogging Awards 2016 are open until 31st July. If you find me at all amusing, I would love nominations in the Best Comic Writer category. Nominating is very simple by following the link above. Thank you for reading my shameless begging.

Toddler Herding: A Practical Guide

children-402166_1920Owners of toddlers will inevitably find themselves engaged in the difficult and noble art of toddler herding. Toddler herding is not for the faint-hearted, and should only be undertaken by trained professionals. The following rules must be heeded at all times.

 
1. The aim of toddler herding is to get one or more toddlers to the correct location and, preferably, trap them there.

 
2. Like cattle, toddler herds will stampede if herded wrongly, spooked, or just because they feel like it.

 
3. Unlike sheep, toddlers are not followers. Toddler herds will typically scatter in multiple directions.

 
4. The use of dogs to herd toddlers is not recommended. Dogs are not up to the task, and will usually find themselves herded, cornered and poked by the toddlers instead. Alternatively, the dogs will join in the toddler stampede.

 
5. Whistles tend to excite the toddler herd. Typically, the toddlers will briefly return in order to attempt to snatch the whistle. Having either seized the whistle or accepted failure in obtaining the whistle, the toddler herd will immediately scatter again.

 
6. The first method of toddler herding is to tell the toddlers where you want them to go. This will not be successful.

 
7. From this point, gentle guidance should be attempted, in the form of hand holding. This has a maximum success period of 30 seconds before a break for freedom will be made. In the case of two toddlers, one toddler will hold hands as instructed. The other toddler will run in the most unsuitable direction possible. The toddler who was holding hands will break free during the attempt to retrieve the other one. She will run in the opposite direction to that taken by the first toddler. In fact, it is not usually possible to be in possession of more than one toddler at a time. This is a major problem with toddler herding.

 
8. If a successful method of temporarily rounding up the toddler herd is found, such as by using a whistle, there is an opportunity to use a difficult, advanced technique, known as the grab. The grab can only be implemented on one toddler. If you are herding multiple toddlers, you will need to pick one, and let the others go. Some people may suggest picking your favourite but, for the reasons that follow, it is best to pick the smallest. The grab is a risky and dangerous manoeuvre. Toddler herds are slippery and wriggly. Upon initial grabbing, the toddler is likely to scream and yell as though being tortured. Should you hold on despite fears of the imminent arrival of Social Services, the grabbed toddler will turn to violence and writhing. Ultimately, the captive toddler will resort to The Plank.

 
9. Stragglers are common in toddler herding. In fact, it is not unusual for all toddlers present to be stragglers, and none to actually be in the herd.

 
10. Following the abject failure of all herding techniques attempted, only two options will remain. The first is to simply leave the toddlers behind and see whether they have any homing skills. The second, and more acceptable and widely used, method is to lure the toddlers into pushchair/house/cage with a trail of chocolate/raisins. Those with some experience of toddler herding tend to employ this technique from the outset.

 
 
Nominations for the Mumsnet Blogging Awards 2016 are open until 31st July. If you find me at all amusing, I would love nominations in the Best Comic Writer category. Nominating is very simple by following the link above. Thank you for reading my shameless begging.

Toddler Photography (Toddler Lessons: Part Seven)

fotagrafin-263381_1280Welcome to Part Seven of the Toddler Lessons series, where we will be looking at toddler photographic techniques.

 
1. Subject Matter

When you find a subject that works, such as a knee, stick with it. Take three million identical photos of the knee. Do not mess with a winning formula. The aim should be to create a series of photographs that would work as a flick book. A really dull one. A flick book of a day in the life of a knee.

Controversy sells, and it therefore pays to be as inappropriate as possible with your subject matter. Extreme close ups of family members’ breasts and crotches are ideal.

 
2. Composition

It is important to have an interesting and unusual viewpoint, as these add intrigue to a photograph. Photographs taken whilst face down on the carpet are perfect examples of this.

Correct placement of the main subject of the photograph is important. Achieving the right balance between different elements can be tricky. The simplest method, as advocated by toddler photographers, is to miss the subject of the photograph out altogether, thus negating the need for balance.

Plain and unobtrusive backgrounds are very important in photography, in order to avoid detracting from the main subject matter. So important are such backgrounds that, should a nice plain piece of wall be located, it should probably be photographed alone. Avoid detracting from the plain and unobtrusive background with any subject matter.

 
3. Motion

Capturing motion in photographs is a difficult skill. Toddler photographers recommend approaching it with the utmost zeal and commitment to the idea of motion: ensure that the subject, photographer and camera are all moving as much as possible.

 
4. Flash

The use of flash should be as startling as possible, particularly to the photographer.

 
5. Focus

This should be either entirely lacking or completely bizarre. Think out of focus family with crystal clear raisin box on coffee table.

 
6. Filters

Filters placed in front of the camera lens to modify and subtly alter the image are frequently used by toddler photographers. The most popular toddler photographic filter is known as ‘the finger’. ‘The finger’ subtly modifies images so that they display a subtle hint of finger.

 
7. Special Effects

These should be applied completely randomly, with no thought for aesthetics. A sepia toned radiator gives a vintage look to modern central heating. A bin with artfully blurred edges is always a winning composition.

 
8. Exhibitions

Every good photographer needs an exhibit. ‘Study in Patch of Beige Carpet’ should do it.

 
9. Panoramic Photography

Panoramic photography is so last year. Toddler photographers in the know now practice twirloramic photography. Twirloramic photography is a technique involving the spinning of a camera in a circle in order to capture a 360 degree image. The effect is widely admired as ‘dizzying’, ‘vomit-inducing’ and ‘blurry’.

 
10. Water Drop Photography

Some absurdly clueless adult photographers believe this is taking photographs of drops of water. Toddler photographers smugly mock this ignorance, whilst following the correct technique of dropping the camera in water.

 
 

(Please Note: As always, neither I nor toddlers know much about this subject. Please do not drop a camera in water.)

 
 
You can see other posts in my Toddler Lessons series here

 
 
Nominations for the
Mumsnet Blogging Awards 2016 are open until 31st July. If you find me at all amusing, I would love nominations in the Best Comic Writer category. Nominating is very simple by following the link above. Thank you for reading my shameless begging.

Referendum Dogs (a Parody)

Reservoir_Dogs_Game_PS2_Front_Cover‘Every dog has his day.’

 
I can’t help but notice that the EU Referendum fallout and the subsequent Tory leadership battle seems to be, well, Reservoir Dogs. Referendum Dogs, if you will. The plot is as follows.

 
A group have orchestrated a heist on Britain. Call it a ‘referendum’ if you like, but they seem to have taken the value of our currency, our stability, our government, our national sanity, the EU, probably Scotland, and possibly Northern Ireland, so I’m calling it a heist.

The heist has been carried out by six people, acting under aliases: Mr Blue-Blood-Tory (aka David Cameron), Mr Brown-Shirt (aka Nigel Farage), Mr Pink-and-Smarmy (aka George Osborne), Mr Whiteish-Hair (aka Boris Johnson), Mr Orange-You-Sick-of-Seeing-His-Face (aka Michael Gove), and Miss Blonde (aka Theresa May). It appears the whole thing was orchestrated by mob, sorry newspaper, boss Rupert Murdoch.

The heist has gone a little awry. There has been substantial blood lost, everyone is blaming each other, and it is doubtful anyone is coming out alive.

Mr Brown-Shirt met his end immediately, becoming utterly irrelevant the second the heist began.

Mr Blue-Blood played his part in setting up the heist, but has been missing, presumed dead ever since.

Mr Whitish-Hair may have had his suspicions that the whole thing was a stupid idea from the start, but he had his own ambitions to achieve here.

Mr Whitish-Hair and Mr Orange-Etc appear be helping each other. Mr Whitish-Hair trusts Mr Orange-Etc, defending him when the others accuse Mr Orange-Etc of being an undercover leadership candidate who set them all up. Mr Whiteish-Hair is subsequently devastated when Mr Orange-Etc eventually confesses that he is indeed a leadership candidate. In the aftermath of the ensuing leadership Mexican standoff, it appears likely that the Prime ministerial ambitions of both Mr Whiteish-Hair and Mr Orange-Etc are dead.

Meanwhile, Miss Blonde doesn’t exactly seem to playing the same game as everyone else, and many suspect that she likes to torture people.

Whilst Mr Pink-and-Smarmy has quietly snuck out and vanished, and one rather fears that he was the one in possession of the money.

 
 

Come on, everyone, sing with me: ‘Clowns to the left of me, jokers to the right…’

Now, own up: whose bright idea was it to let Quentin Tarantino start directing the United Kingdom??

 
 
Nominations for the Mumsnet Blogging Awards 2016 are open until 31st July. If you find me at all amusing, I would love nominations in the Best Comic Writer category. Nominating is very simple by following the link above. Thank you for reading my shameless begging.

The Toddlers: STILL Supporting Brexit?

eu-1473958_1920Following the utter disaster, sorry, outcome of the EU Referendum, I’m sure many of you are wondering if The Toddlers are still Brexit supporters, and how they are dealing with the fallout.

Unfortunately, the signs continue to point to The Toddlers being firmly in the Brexit camp.

 
1. Having cried, shouted and stamped their feet because they wanted their toy dinosaurs, they are both now refusing to touch or do anything with said dinosaurs. God help anyone who suggests that maybe we should accept that we don’t really want the dinosaurs and just put them away, though. They wanted those dinosaurs, damn it. It is their right to have those dinosaurs. It is not relevant that the dinosaurs no longer seem like a good idea, and they aren’t quite sure what to do with them.

 
2. The toddlers look pleased with themselves. This is usually a fairly accurate sign of impending doom.

 
3. The Toddlers have made a few decisions based on dodgy information supplied by a not very trustworthy stuffed crocodile. These decisions have turned out to be a little questionable. The Toddlers are not admitting this.

 
4. The Toddlers had claimed that Mummy was giving £350 million biscuits a week to Daddy. They wanted these biscuits redirecting to their bellies. It has since transpired that The Toddlers may have miscalculated slightly. There may not have been £350 million biscuits. The Toddlers have since denied making the claim altogether. They are currently denying ever having heard of biscuits.

 
5. The Toddlers like to tell Mummy that they want to be in charge, they know what they are doing, and Mummy should go away. Upon getting their way, The Toddlers tend to ask Mummy to come back and take charge again.

 
6. The Toddlers have been very angry and indignant about perceived injustices. The Toddlers perceive many injustices: everyone is out to get them. In the cold light of day, it turns out that The Toddlers may have misunderstood the situation slightly. This may have been the result of not listening.

 
7. The Toddlers like someone to blame. They are not particularly concerned with whether they are blaming the right person. So far today Mummy has been to blame for the weather, something Peppa Pig did, and blue. As such, The Toddlers have voted to leave Mummy.

 
8. The Toddlers’ currency is raisins. The value of their currency took a steep decline this morning after they ate it on a whim.

 
9. The Big Toddler feels that, though her decision to swing a wooden crocodile through the air has smacked the Little Toddler in the face and hurt her, that isn’t really her problem. She doesn’t feel that she should be accountable. She doesn’t accept that she had any responsibility to consider the potential consequences of swinging a wooden crocodile through the air before doing it. It was her right to swing a wooden crocodile through the air, and she believes it was in her best interests to do so. She believes that the Little Toddler should stop whining about being smacked in the face by a wooden crocodile, accept that she lost, and get over it.

 
10. The Toddlers are currently denying the existence of their ELC Toy Box Musical Adventure Bus. Photographic evidence of them with the bus notwithstanding, they both claim never to have seen it.

 
 
(Once again, these may, in fact, all be signs that certain grown adults are behaving like toddlers, rather than that The Toddlers are supporting Brexit.)

 
 
Nominations for the Mumsnet Blogging Awards 2016 are open until 31st July. If you find me at all amusing, I would love nominations in the Best Comic Writer category. Nominating is very simple by following the link above. Thank you for reading my shameless begging.

How Parents of Babies and Toddlers Are Bad for the Environment

smoke-258786_1920It has come to my attention that parents of babies and toddlers are perhaps just a little bit bad for the environment. Or maybe it’s just me. Either way, here are my ten reasons why.

 
1. Disposable nappies

I think this one speaks for itself. There are nappies. So many nappies. Admittedly cloth nappies are available. Environmentally responsible people use these. For the rest of us, there are just two issues with that idea: (1) see point 4; and (2) no, just no.

 
2. Everything is plastic

Everything. Everything in the whole house. The endless toys, obviously. But it’s worse than that. It’s the cups, the plates, the bowls, the cutlery, the coasters, the place mats. Things that used to exist in non-plastic varients are now non-breakable plastic. Of course, as well as non-breakable, it’s non-biodegradable.

 
3. Paper napkins

Well, who hasn’t ever entertained the children by giving them paper napkins to play with in cafes and restaurants? Children are easily entertained. Yes, the rainforests are a worry. It’s just that, well, being glared at for having badly behaved children is also a worry. There is a variation on this activity involving the provision of straws (or ‘wands’ as the children believe them to be). This is no better: see number 2.

 
4. Washing machines

The washing. The washing is endless. Particularly when you forget to dry it and have to wash it again.

 
5. Boiling the kettle

Apparently, one should avoid repeatedly boiling the kettle, as that is bad for energy consumption and the environment. Yes, sorry about that. The correct number of boils to time to cups of tea made ratio for parents of babies and toddlers is: boiled ten times in four hours, no tea made. Before you conclude parents are solely responsible for climate change, it should be noted that, on at least three of the occasions the kettle is ‘boiled’, they will have forgotten to plug it in. Every little helps.

 
6. Wipes

Baby wipes are not good for the environment. We’re so terribly sorry. But did you know how bloody amazing they are? You can use them for pretty much anything. And we do.

 
7. Drawing

Back to the rainforests here. This time all the drawing paper that received one tiny crayon mark before being declared ‘finished’. It’s not always quite as bad as it sounds: sometimes there is a tiny crayon mark on the other side too. Parents can try to mitigate the impact of this one by presenting the barely marked paper as ‘fresh’ paper at the next drawing session. Sadly, toddlers are experts at detecting tiny crayon marks on a piece of paper: ‘It’s dirty!’
‘Turn it over then.’
‘This side’s dirty too!’ Bugger.

 
8. Food waste

They just don’t eat it. But it really isn’t considered acceptable to stop serving your children food because they won’t eat it (despite eating this exact meal three days ago/asking for it 20 minutes ago). Parents’ hands are really tied on this one. Sometimes the issue is compounded by the making of further food that does not get eaten in a futile attempt to get the children to eat something. Again, I really must reiterate in our defence that feeding your children is considered to be the done thing, and not an optional element of parenting.

 
9. Noise pollution

No, sorry, we can’t make it stop. Yes, it is annoying. Yes, and loud. No, we don’t know why they’re making that noise. We think they like it. Yes, we know you don’t like it.

 
10. Excessive battery consumption

This is really VTech’s fault.

 
 
Nominations for the Mumsnet Blogging Awards 2016 are open until 31st July. If you find me at all amusing, I would love nominations in the Best Comic Writer category. Nominating is very simple by following the link above. Thank you for reading my shameless begging.

Are The Toddlers (*Gasp*) Brexit Supporters?

europe-253311_1280As a firm EU ‘Remain’ supporter, I am becoming increasingly concerned that The Toddlers may, in fact, be Brexit sympathisers. There are clear signs to support this theory.

 
1. The Toddlers are always very upset when other toddlers, toddlers who are not them, come over here and take their toys. Even if they didn’t want the toy and were playing with something else. Even if the toy was not, in fact, theirs.

 
2. The Toddlers are not happy about Mummy taking away their sovereignty. They feel that Mummy is constantly telling them what they can and can’t do. They believe that they should be in charge of their own decision making. Toddler rule for toddler people!

The Toddlers feel this way despite all the benefits and assistance they receive from Mummy.

The Toddlers also feel this way despite the lack of any realistic plan for how they would manage on their own.

 
3. The Toddlers object to anyone who wishes to impose regulations, however sensible, upon them. They are sick of all these directives about wearing two shoes, not playing in the traffic, not chewing on the cat… It’s just endless, ridiculous restrictions and red tape.

 
4. The Toddlers have a slight tendency to make up ‘facts’. The entirely fabricated nature of what they are saying in no way undermines the passion with which they are saying it.

 
5. The Toddlers are opposed to being told that they can not discriminate against people on unreasonable grounds. The Toddlers enjoy discriminating against people for no good reason. The Toddlers consider it their prerogative to refuse to speak to people, and indeed to ban them from the premises, on grounds including, but not limited to: having a beard, not having a beard, not liking their shoes, not liking their buttons, not liking their elbow, disapproving of their orientation (i.e. they’re standing in the wrong place), race issues (i.e. they outran the toddlers), smelliness, and just simply ‘NO’.

 
6. Despite The Toddlers’ desire to restrict the movement of other people into their territory (because they are not willing to share their toys), The Toddlers themselves intend to continue to move freely into others’ territories. The Toddlers do not see anything wrong with this policy. (Upon arrival in someone else’s territory, The Toddlers like to speak loudly to the ‘natives’, demand to be provided with their favourite foods, and recreate an environment that looks exactly like the one they just left.)

 
7. The Toddlers rarely care if no one agrees with them, and the actual evidence is not exactly in their favour: they are still right, and they are going to stamp their feet.

 
8. The Toddlers sometimes feel very suspicious of random people. They are not sure why, but they are very sure those people are suspicious and should be made to leave. The Toddlers will change who they are suspicious of on a whim.

 
9. The Toddlers have a vague sense that the world should be revolving around them because they are very important. They are not entirely able to justify this opinion, but are prepared to shout very loudly about it.

 
10. Frankly, The Toddlers won’t stand for anyone wanting to mess with their bananas. Even though no one is actually trying to mess with their bananas, the toddlers remain wary and indignant.

 
 
Or perhaps these are simply signs that Boris Johnson is behaving like a toddler? That could be it.

 
 
Nominations for the Mumsnet Blogging Awards 2016 are open until 31st July. If you find me at all amusing, I would love nominations in the Best Comic Writer category. Nominating is very simple by following the link above. Thank you for reading my shameless begging.

 
 

Cuddle Fairy

Random Things I’ve Seen: The M&S Heist

crumpets-1385193_1920In part two of my new Random Things I’ve Seen feature (it is now officially a feature: I’ve done it twice), I’m presenting something I saw some time ago, but was recently reminded of.

This story takes place in M&S. A surprisingly high number of my stories in recent years appear to take place in M&S. I never went to M&S before I had children. I’m not entirely sure why I spend so much time there now. I still rarely actually buy things from M&S. Perhaps I subconsciously feel M&S is a place one should be when one is a mother.

Anyway, I was in M&S. Again. In the food court, this time. I was loitering, for reasons that now escape me, near the tills. I saw a lady sidle along the packing end of the tills and, unnoticed by the customer or the cashier, take a packet of crumpets that had just been scanned and put them in her own basket.

Now, had she subsequently left the store, this behaviour would have been a little strange, yes, but essentially it would have been shoplifting. Odd shoplifting, but shoplifting, nonetheless. She did not leave the store. Oh no. She took her basket of pilfered crumpets and returned to the food court aisles. Presumably to obtain more shopping. One can only assume that she went on to pay for the already scanned, and thus paid for by someone else, ‘stolen’ crumpets.

Did she believe the conveyor belts were some kind of weird moving shelving? Had she already ascertained that there were no crumpets left on the shelves and, gripped by her desperate need for griddle cakes, formulated an elaborate plan (based on the off-chance that someone at the tills was actually buying crumpets) to snatch some? Had she had seen this particular customer take the last packet of crumpets and tailed her to the tills? Was it a revenge crumpet snatch?

Or is this simply what passes as a heist in M&S? ‘This is not just a heist, this is a M&S heist.’

 
 

Interested in other posts in the Random Things I’ve Seen series? Click to read the first post, Random Things I’ve Seen: The Elizabeth I Dress

 
 
Nominations for the Mumsnet Blogging Awards 2016 are open until 31st July. If you find me at all amusing, I would love nominations in the Best Comic Writer category. Nominating is very simple by following the link above. Thank you for reading my shameless begging.

The Toddler: Feminist, Artist, Tin Enthusiast

256px-Emmeline_Pankhurst_Arrested_1914The Toddler spent a couple of hours at Daddy’s work, and she has a story to tell. A gripping tale, full of twists and intrigue. It has something for everyone: DIY, confusion, mundanity, feminism.

The Toddler is off to a good start, beginning in classic narrative fashion.

‘I’m going to tell you the story about what I did at Daddy’s work.’

We’re all sitting comfortably. The Toddler will begin.

‘I drawed and drawed and drawed and drawed, and then I got Daddy’s screwdriver.’

No explanation relating to the screwdriver is forthcoming. It will remain a mystery – left to the audience’s imagination. Meanwhile, the story continues with further exploration of the drawing part of the excursion.

‘I drawed a curtain and some tins.’

A curtain? And some tins? Is this the most mundane toddler artist ever?

‘Yes, they were in the tin and there was another tin, but Daddy said that was just a stormtrooper.’

Ah, this is starting to make more sense. Well, if you remove stormtrooper references, that is. The drawing pencils were in a tin? The Toddler didn’t draw tins?

‘Yes. They were in a tin.’

So, what did The Toddler draw?

‘I drew a panker.’

Erm…a panker?

‘Yes, panker. Sister suffragette. From Kensington to Billingsgate…’

The Toddler breaks into a very good rendition of Sister Suffragette from Mary Poppins. Not the most mundane toddler artist ever, after all. A genius. And a feminist. Emmeline Pankhurst? The Toddler drew Mrs Pankhurst?

‘Yes, panker! Sister suffragette. Shoulder to shoulder into the fray…’

Daddy interjects: ‘Didn’t you draw Daddy?’

‘Oh, yes, it was Daddy, actually.’

So near and yet so far. The patriarchy crushes feminism once again. Emmeline Pankhurst and the rest of the suffragettes fought tirelessly for equal rights with daddies to appear in toddlers’ drawings. Yet, here we are, in 2016…

 
 
Nominations for the Mumsnet Blogging Awards 2016 are open until 31st July. If you find me at all amusing, I would love nominations in the Best Comic Writer category. Nominating is very simple by following the link above. Thank you for reading my shameless begging.

Say Hello to My Little Friend: The Ten Funniest Things The Toddler Said Last Week

gift-1306852_1280It’s time for the Ten Funniest Things feature, where The Toddler is Al Pacino, The Baby is Kevin Costner, and everyone else is ‘Grandad’.

Presenting The Toddler:

1. On ‘say hello to my little friend’

The Toddler is waving her cutlery around and talking to it: ‘They can be friends. Hello, friends.’
Silly Mummy giggles, and starts quoting The Inbetweeners to Silly Daddy: ‘Ooh, friends, cutlery friends!’
The Toddler, meanwhile, has her own quote, suddenly yelling: ‘Say hello to my little…’
Silly Mummy and Silly Daddy stare at each other. She surely can’t be about to entirely inadvertently quote Scarface?
‘…Dominoes!’
Silly Mummy and Silly Daddy collapse in hysterics. So near, and yet so…dominoes.

2. On the purple one

The Toddler has a question: ‘Can you tell me about the purple one?’
Silly Mummy is not entirely sure what The Toddler is talking about, and asks for some simple clarification: ‘What’s the purple one? What does it look like?’
The Toddler has got this: ‘It’s green. And it looks a bit like red.’ Oh. That purple one.

3. On mixed emotions

The Toddler is feeling a bit conflicted: ‘I really like this, but I really don’t like it so much.’

4. On presents

The Toddler is counting tea cups from her tea set with Silly Daddy. She is deliberately doing it wrongly. Silly Daddy informs her that she can have a present if she does it properly. The Toddler counts the cups properly. She awaits her present. Silly Daddy presents her with…the tea cups. The Toddler sighs and rolls her eyes: ‘You tricked me!’ She approaches Silly Daddy, holding out the tea cups. Presumably, she is returning the trick gift? Apparently not: ‘Can you wrap them?’

5. On The Baby, Kevin Costner

The Toddler likes to keep The Baby gainfully employed. Today, The Baby is apparently The Toddler’s bodyguard: ‘You have to stay with me, The Baby. It’s very dangerous out there, so you’ll have to keep an eye on me.’

6. On playing with Silly Daddy

Silly Daddy is tidying away toys. The Toddler and The Baby are ‘helping’. The Toddler comes to report to Silly Mummy in the kitchen: ‘Mummy, we are playing something with Daddy!’
‘Really? What are you playing?’
The Toddler considers: ‘Well…we’ve got no toys…’ When you put it like that, this sounds like the worst game ever.

7. On eating dinner

Silly Daddy is trying to get The Toddler to finish her dinner: ‘You have to eat your vegetables.’
The Toddler has a better idea: ‘Okay, you can eat the rest of it and I’ll watch.’

8. On the Old Lady Who Lived in a Shoe

Silly Mummy is reading the Old Lady Who Lived in a Shoe nursery rhyme to The Toddler. The Toddler is scandalised at the old lady’s actions: ‘Sent them to bed?! Outrageous!’

9. On noise

The Toddler is yelling at Silly Mummy: ‘THIS IS NOT ACTUAL NOISY! THIS IS PRETENDING NOISY!’ We need to work on the definition of ‘pretend’. And ‘noise’.

10. On playing nicely

The Toddler and The Baby are busy. The Toddler informs Silly Mummy: ‘I’m playing a game with The Baby, Mummy.’
‘Well, that’s nice. What game are you playing?’
‘Throwing things at her.’
Well, that’s not nice.

 
The Baby’s Corner

The Silly Family are visiting Grandma. So are Auntie and Baby Cousin. The Baby sometimes doesn’t know people’s names, but she has a ‘fit all’ name that she knows will always get her out of trouble. Auntie is leaving the room. The Baby watches her go: ‘Where’s Grandad gone?’ Yep, social etiquette 101: if you forget someone’s name, you can’t go wrong with ‘Grandad’.

 
 

If you’d like to see further posts in the ‘Ten Funniest Things The Toddler Said Last Week’ feature, they can be found here.

 
 
Nominations for the Mumsnet Blogging Awards 2016 are open until 31st July. If you find me at all amusing, I would love nominations in the Best Comic Writer category. Nominating is very simple by following the link above. Thank you for reading my shameless begging.

 
 

ethannevelyn

Random Things I’ve Seen: The Elizabeth I Dress

queen-62969_1280Welcome to the first instalment of a new occasional series (possibly*): Random Things I’ve Seen.

(*Depending on whether I see any more random things. And whether I remember my series.)

 
 
This first offering comes from the front window of a charity shop. I’m sure we’re all familiar with these window displays: the second hand wedding dresses, bridesmaid dresses, prom dresses, Elizabeth I’s Darnley Portrait dress…hang on. What? Yes, just an Elizabeth I dress. There in the window. Aren’t charity shops great? You know, for when you need to be a Tudor monarch, but you’re a bit short on money.

 
Well, I’ve given it a bit of thought, and I think I know what happened here. You know how it is: it’s your favourite dress. You love it. You wear it everywhere. You fill a palace (and several centuries of children’s history lessons) with portraits of you in the dress. It reminds you of good times. Defeating the Spanish Armada, and all that jazz.

Time goes on. You start to get a bit bored of the dress. It begins to remind you of bad times. Beheading Mary Queen of Scots. That sort of thing.

Then William Shakespeare writes you a few plays, and obviously you need new outfits to attend the performances. The dress gets pushed to the back of the wardrobe.

Finally, Sir Francis Drake introduces you to potatoes, and you’re never fitting into the dress again anyway.

Time to have one of your servants drop it down Age Concern for you.

 
I expect that’s what happened. Now, is anyone looking for a Queen Elizabeth I dress for their Summer wardrobe…?

 
 
Nominations for the Mumsnet Blogging Awards 2016 are open until 31st July. If you find me at all amusing, I would love nominations in the Best Comic Writer category. Nominating is very simple by following the link above. Thank you for reading my shameless begging.

Parenting Never Have I Ever

tea-1105113_1920Who knows the drinking game Never Have I Ever? Each person states something they have never ever done, and anyone playing who has done that takes a drink.

Who wants to play parenting Never Have I Ever? Below are twenty never have I ever statements. For each one you have done as a parent, you should take a drink. This is the parenting version, remember, so that drink should be a sip of cold tea. Everyone ready?

 
1. Never have I ever… Sniffed a bum in public.

2. Never have I ever… Sucked snot from a nose.

3. Never have I ever… Pretended to be a cabbage in Costa coffee because my toddler was putting ‘magic spells’ on me (with a straw).

4. Never have I ever… Cleaned sick off an entire outfit with a baby wipe instead of changing it.

5. Never have I ever… Done the above with my own outfit.

6. Never have I ever… Read every other page of a book on the tenth reading of it that day in order to finish it faster, since they’re not listening anyway (despite demanding it must be read).

7. Never have I ever… Said, ‘You are to come here by the time I count to three. One…two…two and a half…three…Right, I’m going to count to three again. If you don’t come here by THIS count of three, you’ll be going on the naughty step. One…two…two and one sixteenth…two and two sixteenths…’

8. Never have I ever… Called a top and leggings a dress and ‘special tights’ to get a dress-obsessed toddler to wear it.

9. Never have I ever… Pretended to have lost all copies of Cinderella and Peppa Pig, and to have never heard of Topsy and Tim at all.

10. Never have I ever… Hidden the Lego.

11. Never have I ever… Been sent to the naughty step by my toddler.

12. Never have I ever… Answered queries about getting the play doh out with, ‘Que? No hablo ingles.’

13. Never have I ever… Upgraded the status of raisins from ‘dried grapes’ to ‘magical bribes’.

14. Never have I ever… Answered the phone with, ‘Hello? Yes…(No, it’s not Grandad – shh!)…Sorry, could you repeat that…(Shh!)…Sorry, what…(NO YOU CAN’T SPEAK TO GRANDAD! IT’S NOT GRANDAD – IT’S THE OPTICIAN!)’

15. Never have I ever… Sung any song from Mary Poppins in a public place. Whilst marching.

16. Never have I ever… Informed my toddler that he can’t cuddle a pigeon.

17. Never have I ever… Informed a pigeon that it can’t cuddle my toddler.

18. Never have I ever… Occupied my child by giving her a baby wipe/receipt/empty wrapper to play with.

19. Never have I ever… Wondered why I ever bothered to buy any toys, when my child loves her baby wipe/receipt/empty wrapper the most.

20. Never have I ever… Presented my children with a clearly possessed, evil-looking doll that moves during the night, and told them, ‘It’s a fun family Christmas game: please stop screaming.’

 
Right, everyone managed to drink an entire cup of cold tea? You’re welcome.

 
 

(If anyone is wondering, I have done some of these, not all. I’ll let you guess which ones.)

The Dear God of Why Won’t You *#?!!**#! Go to Sleep: Mythological Toddlers

256px-Mårten_Eskil_Winge_-_Tor's_Fight_with_the_Giants_-_Google_Art_ProjectWe all know the stories of some of the most famous figures in mythology, but have you ever wondered what they were like in their early years? Of course you haven’t. You’re a sane person with a busy life. You haven’t wondered. You didn’t ask. Nevertheless, I present a probably (*ahem*) accurate account of the toddler years of some mythological greats.

 
 
1. Narcissus

Narcissus was ultimately lured to a pool by Nemesis, where he fell in love with his own reflection. Unable to tear himself away, he stared at his beauty in the water until he died.

As a toddler, Narcissus could be found in TK Maxx, kissing his reflection in all the mirrors. Attempts to extract him were unsuccessful until bribery with biscuits was mentioned.

 
2. Odysseus

Odysseus was best known for his ten year journey to return to Ithaca following the Trojan War.

However, Odysseus was already no stranger to epic journeys. As a toddler, it would often take him two days to journey from the sofa to the front door, in order to comply with his mother’s wishes that he put his bloody shoes on so that they could leave the bloody house.

 
3. Pandora

Pandora, the first mortal woman, opened a jar out of curiosity and released all the evils of mankind upon the world.

The young Pandora trained for her eventual fate by opening a jar of sudocrem, releasing the evils of irremovable white gunk upon the carpet, sofas, baby and cat.

 
4. Orpheus

When Orpheus’ wife, Eurydices, died, he travelled to the Underworld to retrieve her. Hades and Persephone agreed to allow Eurydices to return, on condition that Orpheus walk in front of her and not look back until they both reached the upper world. Upon reaching the upper world himself, Orpheus forgot that he must not look back and looked at Eurydices, causing her to vanish back to the Underworld forever.

Orpheus had, in fact, struggled with the concept of not looking since early childhood. As a toddler, he was rubbish at hide and seek, telling Mummy where to hide and then looking before she even had a chance to reach her pre-agreed hiding place. Fortunately, Mummy never vanished into the Underworld, though she did on occasion hide in the bathroom to avoid further games of hide and seek.

 
5. Minos

As an adult, Minos made sacrifices to a Minotaur he had contained within a labyrinth.

As a toddler, early trials were conducted, consisting of attempts to contain the cat with Lego, before sending a baby sibling to investigate.

 
6. Sisyphus

Destined as an adult to spend eternity repeatedly rolling a boulder up a hill only to have it roll back down again, toddler Sisyphus could be found pursuing the futile task of trying to pick up ten balls at once, repeatedly dropping a ball already in his arms in each attempt to pick up another ball.

 
7. Demeter

Searching relentlessly for her abducted daughter Persephone, Demeter plunged the world into an eternal winter, in which all living things began to die, and the threat of the extinction of all life on Earth loomed.

The incident had its roots in the famous ‘Where’s Peppa, I Want Peppa NOW Tantrum’ of Demeter’s toddlerhood. Following the misplacement of her favourite Peppa Pig figurine, toddler Demeter plunged the living room into an eternal tantrum, in which Mummy’s patience began to die, and the threat of Baby Sister receiving a smack round the head with a toy stethoscope loomed.

 
8. Thor

Thor was a hammer-wielding god, associated with thunder, lightening and the protection of mankind.

In his early years, he was a hammer-wielding toddler, associated with tantrums, banging and the destruction of the living room.

 
9. Midas

As an adult, everything Midas touched turned to gold.

Midas possessed a version of this power even as a toddler, when everything he touched turned to broken pieces (or became inexplicably sticky).

 
10. Hypnos

Hypnos was, of course, the God of Sleep.

However, this was a position he obtained later in life. In his toddler years, Hypnos was actually the Dear God of Why Won’t You *#?!!**#! Go to Sleep?!

 
 

Life, Love and Dirty Dishes