Bedtime Battles. We All Have Them.

Even when you have children who sleep well, bedtime battles still occur. I know this because Molly is usually a great sleeper. Up to bed at half six and then she is out like a light until the following day. However, once in a blue moon, she doesn’t settle down well and I am up and down the stairs like a yo-yo. Part of me feels this may be karma. I used to shout my dad up and down the stairs, what to him, probably felt like a hundred times every evening. So last night was one of those nights. I now know it’s because she wasn’t feeling 100%, as today she’s woken with a temperature and sore ears, and last night was spent consoling her when her ear hurt and propping her up to stop the coughing fits she was having. But, before she started with those symptoms, she was fidgety and couldn’t sleep and kept piling all her toys behind her pillow and then complaining she was uncomfortable. Easy to see why, if you had seen the collection of ponies, barbies and cars she had stashed in her bed!
The typical “I need a wee” and “I need a drink” bedtime stalling tactics were pulled out last night, and it made me think about something I wrote a while back. I don’t share the things I write very often, if at all, but I feel like this is something a lot of parents will be able to identify with, so here goes.

Bedtime routine

One, two, “can’t find barbies shoe.”
Three, four, “who’s at the door?”
Five, six, “can we play bricks?”
Seven, eight, “I’M WIDE AWAKE!”
Nine, ten, “let’s get the pens.”
Eleven, twelve, “browse the bookshelves?”
Thirteen, fourteen, “can I have some beans?”
Fifteen, sixteen, “has Santa been?”
Seventeen, eighteen, “I NEED A WEE”
Nineteen, twenty, “my milk’s empty.”
Twenty one, twenty two, “night mum, I love you.”

 

To those who can identify, I hope I made you smile just a little when remembering your own bedtime battles. One day all our children will be teenagers and we will have to drag them out of bed I’m sure. For now, drink coffee and invest in a lot of matchsticks to prop your eyes open!

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2 Hours Sleep.

Some days it is so hard to be the type of parent you want to be. Today I am functioning on only 2 hours solid sleep and I also managed little dribs and drabs between 4-7, when poor Molly woke (again) coughing and that was us up for the day. As a result I have been short tempered and raised my voice a couple of times, over things I would normally deal with much more calmly. By lunchtime I was close to tears and the girls were also a little teary. I realised we could go the day with me feeling grumpy, and that attitude rubbing off on them, or I could fix it. So, I sat down, apologised for being shouty mummy and asked them if we could start again. Molly said yes and that I am not shouty mummy but the best mummy in the world. Cue a lump in my throat and me wondering what the hell I did to deserve such amazing daughters. So, lunch is plated up and I had two very smiley little helpers help me prepare it, we have an afternoon of crafts and Disney movies planned and we all feel better already. The mood in the whole house has lifted. Some days it is so difficult to see past the tiredness. The fact that as you try to tidy, more toys are being pulled out and little hands are grabbing at the hem of your cardigan, makes your more frazzled than it should and it seems like bedtime cannot come some enough, but there are ways to make your day more bearable. Mine involved taking a deep breath (and having a hot cuppa) and realising that my mood shouldn’t be affecting my children. It takes a lot to admit you’re wrong sometimes, but it is always worth it!

Soft Play Pandemonium.

Today is the first day of half term and with Molly-May off school for the week, I have lots of plans to keep us all busy and stop the girls from bickering.  We met up with three other mums and between the four of us, there were 10 children and one baby bump all braving soft play. All was pretty calm until it came to lunch. Six bowls of chips, three garlic breads, 10 juices and four cups of tea. Just fitting it on the tables was difficult enough. The kids were all great and devoured the food before running back off to play.
Getting everybody out of the play frames and in to coats was a military operation.  My Aoife was devastated to have to leave and threw a temper tantrum to shake the ground and one of the mums 20 month old twin boys, tried to do a runner.  Eventually, every one managed to vacate the building and made their way home.
I took my girls and Oliver (the girls 12 year old uncle) for ice cream. Between the four of us we had candy floss flavour, cookies and cream flavour and pear drop flavour. Cafe creme in New Brighton is one of our favourite places to pop in for an ice cream. Their flavours are very exciting and the girls both love picking a new flavour, or colour in Aoife’s case, every time. We then had a bus ride to visit nanny, which finished off what was a lovely day all round.

Sweetcorn Fritters for Lunch.

In a bid to get Aoife to stop being a fussy monkey at meal times, I have decided to try getting her more involved in the making and cooking process. So yesterday for lunch we opted for sweetcorn fritters. She loved mixing everything together and even tried to involve her Jasmine doll by using her head as a mixing spoon (cue a whole new mix being made). Its such an easy recipe and pretty quick to put together and make, even with a two year old helper. They went down really well with Molly but Aoife wasn’t really a fan, although she loved the process of making them. I am hoping the more Aoife gets involved, the better her eating habits become. She used to be an amazing eater so this new found fussiness is something I am not used to.
Here’s the recipe we used:

Sweetcorn Fritters

Ingredients:
1 cup of flour
Half a cup of sweetcorn
Half a cup of grated cheese
Handful of chives
200ml milk
1 tsp of chives

Method:
Add all the ingredients in to a mixing bowl and stir vigorously to ensure an even mix. Take a mixing spoon full of the mixture and add it to a lightly oiled frying pan on a medium heat and leave for a minute or two pressing down lightly with a spatula to make mini pancake sized fritters.  One firm enough to turn, flip and do the same on the other side.  Flip once more after a couple of minutes to ensure the fritter is cooked through and then move to a cooling rack. The size of the fritters you want, depends on how many you will fit in your pan (I did three at a time and made eight fritters).
Here is my head chef mixing the ingredients.

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Slow Down Mummy

Today was the day I slowed down. Aoife is a very observant child, she wants to stop and look at everything and take it in. I love this about her but it does make things take a lot longer. So I fell victim to rushing around, when its not really necessary, and in the meantime, Aoife got rushed along too. I realised this and it made me feel sad. She was missing things, and ultimately, my need to get home quicker or get the housework done faster, was to blame. So today, we slowed down.
What is usually a less than ten minute walk, took 30 minutes but the smile on my little girls face was so worth it. We stopped and talked to a cat, looked at the leaves on some trees, named the colours we could see on cars, touched the “really big tree” and played a game where we hid from a rabbit with ears that wanted to eat Aoife’s nose. Not once did my girl say “slow down mummy” and the extra fresh air and fun put her in a lovely mood, which has resulted in a lovely day. We both enjoyed it that much that we ended up out in the garden before lunch as well. I’m already looking forward to tomorrow’s mini adventure and we are off to the playground too, so there will be more things we can stop and take in.

Five Year Olds, Dressing up Clothes and Fish Fingers.

Today we went to one of Molly’s classmates birthday party’s. Molly was so excited in the lead up to it, that running away to buy some ear defenders seemed like the only way to make it through the morning! Safe to say she has perfected her “I am a girl and squeal like a banshee” excited squeal.
I don’t quite understand the mentality behind leaving your four/five year old child at a party without you, but it seems myself and the other four mums who stayed, were in the minority. So 15 four and five year old girls threading beads, passing the parcel and making tiaras was how I spent my afternoon. It was really nice, if not a little surreal seen as I actually had to seperate two girls (none of them Molly) fighting at one point.
If I learnt anything from today, its that a rowdy group of reception aged girls, will resemble a rowdy football crowd, when a Princess Ariel dress is at stake. And the poor unsuspecting mummy who has to step in and sort the row, will second guess every move she makes, because the children she is trying to help are not her own. It is actually quite daunting stepping in and telling children you hardly know that they should share. And then comes the issue of who to let go first with the item. Lucky for me, my Molly was superb and had a second princess dress that she offered up, so both girls who were upset got one each and I beamed with pride over how well behaved my daughter is!
The scramble for a seat for fish fingers and cake still makes me giggle, despite having been to a fair few parties now. What is it about kids and fish fingers? They’re vile in my honest opinion. But nothing makes hungry five year olds smile like a party plate full of the things.
We left that party with little Buddha shaped chocolates, a sugar fuelled Molly-May and a slightly frazzled mummy. I think it is pretty safe to say April, and the birthday party it will bring, can now take its time in arriving.

Introducing ‘The Edibles’ In My Life, Muesli and Wafer.

So as this is my first post, I thought it would probably be a good idea to explain the meaning behind my blog name.
Muesli and Wafer are my daughters. I promise I did not commit a terrible parenting mistake and actually name them after food (and not the greatest food either). In fact, the blame for these names lies solely with my baby brother. He nicknamed Molly-May, muesli, and when baby Aoife-Rose June came along, in true uncle fashion, nicknamed her wafer. I think they’re rather cute in all honesty and although slightly nuts, think the little bro did well.

But as I said, lets get the formalities out of the way.
Muesli: My eldest daughter is currently four years old.  She is in her first year of primary school and making me and her daddy immensely proud of her everyday. She is a total joy to be around and everyone who knows her will tell you how truly special she is. And beautiful. And her hair is the most amazing colour I have ever seen.
She is very tall for her age and loves to be active.  She’s extremely creative, always colouring and making up her own imaginary games and loves nothing more than to be surrounded by people she loves. She’s an extremely sociable little girl and one of the most determined souls I have ever met. She knows what she wants and strives to make it happen.

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And last, but by no means least, Wafer: My youngest daughter is two years old. She is currently at home with me, learning and developing in the same way her sister did, until she is ready to start preschool. She is an immensely bright child, with a vocabulary of words well in to the hundreds. She can count to 14 and knows several of her colours. She is another very determined soul, but in the way her sister is fiercely independent, Aoife is still at the stage where keeping mummy or daddy close by and having lots of cuddles is a big priority. This is a stage I am treasuring. She is so loving, so happy and full of life, so full of mischief and a very special little lady. And she pretty much defines cute.

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So there you have it. My girls. The reason for everything I do and the reason I smile and laugh everyday.
Oh, and I promise my next post won’t be so mushy and full of cheese!
Much love ♥
And I’m Faye. Better make that clear hadn’t I 🙂