This is my life:
My dad is visiting from Spain and stayed at our house on Friday night. The plan (I thought) was that he was going to spend some ‘quality time’ with J yesterday morning whilst I took the little ones to a party at 10am.
Z woke early and came and got into bed with us. He went back to sleep…I didn’t. When E got up to go to work, the kids went downstairs with him and I fell back asleep, thinking that my dad was with them.
I woke with a start at 9.20am but I didn’t panic too much; after all, the kids would have had breakfast with my dad and I only had myself and the little ones to get ready, didn’t I? Even so, I had an economy shower, only allowing time for a ‘fringe wash’, knowing I’d just have to tie back the rest of my greasy chip-pan hair.
As I was quickly drying myself, J sauntered into the bathroom and enquired casually, ‘So who’s looking after me whilst you take M and Z to the party?’ I gave him a puzzled look and told him that he would be staying with his granddad, of course.
‘But granddad’s gone’, my little cherub informed me with a nonchalant shrug, before wandering back downstairs to contemplate his navel.
By now it was now 9.35am. It would take ten minutes to drive to the party. I was stark bollock naked. The kids were still in their pyjamas. Nobody was fed. The present was not wrapped. I had no-one to look after my nine-year old.
This is what happened next (with me running round approximately in time with the Benny Hill theme music):
‘Boys! Come and get dressed!’ (blow-drying my saturated fringe whilst trying to find some clean jeans)
‘Teeth! Cleaned! NOW!’ (cleaning my teeth whilst simultaneously applying mascara)
Then, with time rapidly ticking by, there was no choice but to get monosyllabic:
‘Shoooooes!’ (hoping I don’t get run over as I wriggle into un-matching bra and decade old knickers)
M, who always worries about being late but never does a thing to prevent it happening, wandered around in his socks and nothing else, eventually putting on one of Z’s shirts that just about skimmed his belly button and then jeans without first putting on underwear.
In contrast, J, knowing how cold it gets in his dad’s garage (where he was now going), proceeded to get dressed in pretty much his entire wardrobe of clothes and bore a close resemblance to the Michelin Man when he’d finished.
Z ‘helped’ to wrap the present. Cue sellotape stuck vertically, randomly and nowhere near the two edges that it was supposed to adhere together. This was followed by an almighty meltdown because I wouldn’t let him write the card due to the time…which was, by now, 9.55am.
As the morning was already going so swimmingly, it would have been rude for the card to not to be a birthday card at all but a money wallet…a fact which was pointed out by a smug nine-year old and a perforated label across the top announcing gleefully, ‘I am a money wallet!’
And me? Well, as per usual, I couldn’t find myself or Z any matching socks. Bastard socks.
There followed a mad dash to the car and a drive over to E’s garage with the two little ones in the back hilariously ‘joking’ that they were opening the present. Laugh? I didn’t.
We arrived at the party a mere twenty-five minutes late which, all things considered…was still pretty shocking.
Oh well. At least it was Saturday when ‘wine time’ is any time after four o’clock…