Thursday, February 17, 2011

Poo; Of People, Birds and A Bear of said Name...

The tiny one is sound asleep, tucked under my arm.

My Headache has been reduced to a dull throbbing.

The Snot Queen and her daddy have long since retired to bed and the radio is playing a mad mix of sounds that are supposed to be ambient and chilly - outie but instead just sound like church.

Time to rehash the best and worst bits of my day...

The tiny one has been making a lot of noise about poo for the last few months. For a brief spell last November, she even got into the habit of doing a poo in the toilet each day for about a week. So this morning, after three weeks of house arrest and a not so charming deposit on the white carpet in the spare room after her bath yesterday morning, I decided to take a gamble and leave her nappy free for the day with the potty nearby if she wanted it.

There was much initial excitement and plenty of 'trial sits' where she'd call out "Baby Poo!" run and sit on the potty for five or so seconds, announce she was, "All done!" and proceed to gaze expectantly into the empty potty, wondering where the hell the poo had gotten to.

The morning continued on as normal with the exception that the Tiny One's daily poo seemed to be taking a holiday. No worries though, it was just an experiment after all.

Then the Snot Queen announced that she had to poo and that she wanted to do it on the potty.


The second her bottom touched the potty, all hell broke completely and utterly loose. The tiny one was in hysterics.


Thinking she might get a kick out of seeing a real poo in the potty, I took her over to see it when her sister was done.

I thought wrong. Very wrong.


At this point, the Snot Queen wandered off to a quiet corner to read a book and get away from the poo shrieking madness.

The Tiny One followed. And as is normal behaviour for an upset child at naptime, she was quick to transfer her outrage to a new target.

"NOOOOO LILY BOOK!!!!! BABY BOOK!!!! MOMMMMMYYYYYY!!!!! BABY MOKIES (*code word for milk. A little less obvious then her previous cry of "BOOBIES!!!")

She then proceeded to turn towards me and walk smack into a kitchen chair.

Just when you thought the meltdown couldn't get any worse, it did...

It was about this point that I decided enough was enough and called out the magic word, "OUTSIDE!!!"

On went the nappy. On went the clothes. On went the boots and out we all went into the garden where the girls jumped off their escess energy on the trampoline and I cleaned bird poo off of the garden furniture and hung out a load of wash on my freshly made clothesline.

At some point, the Snotzer disappeared back indoors, but I kept calling out and she kept answering so I assumed all was well.

Beginner's mistake.

I went in a few minutes later to find her happily playing away in the bathroom with both taps running and a good inch of water on the bathroom floor.

I'm actually quite impressed with how well I handled the situation. There was no shouting, no swearing and no tears (after 3 weeks of isolation I'm pretty well institutionalized at this point.) Instead, I calmly closed the door on the floodlands and through on a Pooh Bear video, thereby buying the little darlings a reprieve and myself thirty minutes of sanity in which to restore order to the disaster zone that was once my house.

Floods dried, muddy floors mopped and children fed, we had just cracked into the play dough when a miracle occurred.

An imposing figure in head to toe motorcycle gear appeared in the doorway to the kitchen.

Daddy was off early.

And now I am off as well, to bed.

Good Night! x

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Dear Croup...

Dear Croup,

GO AWAY!!!!!!!


Mammy Diaries x

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

The Pox Stops Here...

All in all, I have to say that last week's run in with the vomiting bug wasn't that bad at all. The not so tiny one, despite not being able to keep down her food for nearly a week and living pretty much entirely off of the old booby milk, didn't lose so much as an ounce and at no point did her spirits ever flag or did I ever worry for her well being.

No. The illness itself wasn't that bad at all. What did drive me loopy though, was the isolation. That lovely period called quaranteen where you don't step foot outside of your house for fear that you infect someone else's child and become known as "THAT MOTHER." Where your days all roll into one long Barney filled blur and the soundtrack to your life goes something like this;





It was also pissing down rain most of the week which ruled out even the tiniest hope of going outdoors and maybe, just maybe, catching sight of another adult figure somewhere in the distance. At one point, I was NEARLY tempted to answer the door to one of the political canvassers doing the rounds...

For an entire week, my world revolved around vomit. Cleaning it out of the sheets, the towels, the floors, the clothes and the girls. When I wasn't mopping up bodily fluids, I could be found refereeing fights over who had the ____________ (fill in the blank with the name of any object really, it doesn't matter, they probably fought over it at some point!) first and who pushed who and why eating butter straight from the packet is not a good idea.

In short, it was a loooonnnngggg week.

However, eventually, it ended and on Saturday night we celebrated our puke free status by going to a wedding. The girls had a ball. Having had no company but each other and myself for the past week, they went mental at the sight of other children and danced the night away in that insanely energetic way that only the under 5's and the overly chemically enhanced can.

Monday found us at our weekly Mums and Babies Coffee morning where once again, the girls partied like there was no tomorrow, as though something was about to happen that would have us locked indoors again for the foreseeable future...

Something spotty...

And itchy...

And highly infections...

Yup. You guessed it, the Snot Queen has the chicken Pox and we are back in quaranteen again...

The fun never stops.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Dear Rota Virus...

Dear Rotavirus,

We hope you enjoyed your stay at "Chateau Tiny One." Of course, seeing as how you stayed here for nearly a week, I can only assume that the accommodation was to your liking.

A few small matters in relation to your bill;

As you overstayed your welcome... I mean, remained here past your expected check out time, we have had to tack on an additional late fee as well as charge you for the extra 2 night's stay.

Your visit also put a strain on our already stressed housekeeping staff who will now require a weekend's rest, including several treatments at a spa of my... I mean her choosing. Chocolates would also not go astray. This has all been included in your invoice, as has the isolation pay I simply must insist upon as we have been unable to leave the house or partake in social activities due to your presence.

On a similar note, you managed to dirty just about every towel, blanket and sheet in our home. The children's (and my own) wardrobes were pretty much decimated! Our laundry machines have been running steadily since you arrived! I sudder to think of what the utility bills will be like this month! I'm sure you agree that it is only right and just that I send you a copy of them when they are issued and that you pay a portion to cover your share of the financial burden.

Overall, having reviewed your actions of the past week, it is our recommendation that in future, should you find yourself in our area again, that you also find yourself alternate accommodation.

Yours Sincerely,

Mammy D

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Taking the Tiger Mom by the Tail...

I was going to come on here today and write about the tiny one being sick for the last few days. Tales of riding the vomit comet and nappies so vile that I will never look at curry the same way again.

Instead, I am going to write about something else that has sickened me. Something that shakes and disturbs me and makes me worry for the type of society we have become.

A few weeks ago, I was forwarded an article from the Wall Street Journal entitled "Why Chinese Mothers Are Superior ." In it, Amy Chua,a mother, Yale Law professor and author of "Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother," explains why she believes that extreme discipline, shame and subordination are the key ingredients to raising "successful" children.

She has called her daughters "garbage," said they were, "lazy, cowardly, self-indulgent and pathetic."

All of course, for their own good.

Growing up, they were not allowed to have sleepovers or play dates, to get less then an A in any subject or to play an instrument other then the violin or piano, which of course, with daily three hour practice sessions, they would excel at.

They could not be in a school play, nor could they complain about not being allowed to be in a school play. They were not allowed to watch television or play video games or to be anything less then the best in any class they took part part in.

To the Tiger Mother, failure (or even mere mediocrity) is not an option. Success is the only way.

But what exactly is success in the eye of the Tiger Mother and where exactly is the logic of the Tiger Mother coming from?

China is one of the biggest violators of human rights in the world.

Although technically outlawed in 1996, human rights groups say brutality and degradation are common in Chinese detention centres.

In China, there are 68 crimes which are punishable by death, including among them bigamy, gambling and computer hacking.

Internet forums are strictly monitored - this week for example, the Chinese government has outlawed the broadcasting of recent events in Egypt, where the people are trying to overthrow a repressive government - and the word "Democracy" has been banned on most chinese web browsers. According to wikipedia;

"n 2005 reporter Shi Tao was sentenced to imprisonment for 10 years for releasing an internal Communist Party document to an overseas Chinese democracy site after Yahoo! China provided his personal emails and IP addresses to the Chinese government.[15] Skype president Josh Silverman said it was "common knowledge" that TOM had "established procedures to... block instant messages containing certain words deemed offensive by the Chinese authorities."[16]"

The "one child" policy, limiting each chinese couple to a maximum of one child, is believed to have created a huge rise in the number of gender specific abortions being performed as well as in the cases of female infanticide, claims which are strongly supported by china's lopsided ratio of 118 males being born to every 100 females.

But hey! If those kids are kicking our asses at Maths and sciences and if they have toddlers who can rattle off a Mozart Symphony as easily as the snot queen sings "Twinkle, twinkle..." then it's all worthwhile, isn't it?

In a society where democracy is a forbidden word and where people who question or criticize the government are locked up, killed or simply "disappear," is it any wonder that degradation and extreme discipline are valued tools in the Tiger Mama's toolbox as it is only through shame, subservience and extreme discipline that such regimes can survive.

But surely those tools have no use over here in the so called free world.

Surely we, the enlightened west, the so called "free world," can see all that is wrong with this way of thinking!

Apparently not.

In an ongoing poll by the Wall Street Journal of close to 35,000 readers, when asked which style of parenting (Permissive Western or demanding Eastern) they thought resulted in happier, more successful kids, 62.4% believed the Tiger Mother's regime to be the answer.

I only wonder if those readers have ever wondered exactly what the cost of such success truly is...

In the words of Dorothy Law Nolte, Ph.D:

Children Learn what they Live

If children live with criticism, they learn to condemn.
If children live with hostility, they learn to fight.
If children live with fear, they learn to be apprehensive.
If children live with pity, they learn to feel sorry for themselves.
If children live with ridicule, they learn to feel shy.
If children live with jealousy, they learn to feel envy.
If children live with shame, they learn to feel guilty.
If children live with encouragement, they learn confidence.
If children live with tolerance, they learn patience.
If children live with praise, they learn appreciation.
If children live with acceptance, they learn to love.
If children live with approval, they learn to like themselves.
If children live with recognition, they learn it is good to have a goal.
If children live with sharing, they learn generosity.
If children live with honesty, they learn truthfulness.
If children live with fairness, they learn justice.
If children live with kindness and consideration, they learn respect.
If children live with security, they learn to have faith in themselves and in those about them.
If children live with friendliness, they learn the world is a nice place in which to live.

Copyright © 1972 by Dorothy Law Nolte