Friday, 14 November 2014

The One With The Cat, The Mouse and the Jam Jar

Out of all of us in the Random household I'm always telling Bob Cat that she's no bother, because bless she is no bother.

Well she was no bother until the other day. 

I knew she was stalking something from the moment we got up, but I thought it was a spider. She would hunker down then leap about, next she'd stop very still and wait with her nose pressed to the floor desperately trying to look under the sofa.

I left her to it as she's a skitty kitty and always darting about so I didn't take too much notice, and then later I forgot all about it.

It was after I'd picked the boy up from school and we'd returned home that things developed. 

I went into the kitchen to put the kettle on and get him a snack when I heard the boy calling me from the lounge,

"Mummy. We have a problem' came the fateful words.

'What is it darling?' I replied thinking it was probably that I hadn't put Frozen on yet!

The boy joined me in the kitchen.

'Mummy. There's a rat.'


It'd all gone a bit Fawlty Towers. 

I raced into the lounge. Luckily it wasn't a full scale outbreak of the bubonic plague but there in the middle of the living room floor was a small grey/brown mouse lying on his side and not looking too lively. 

I deduced it's presence was Bob's work from earlier. Bless Oscar, but at 17 years old with the best will in the world he'd do well to catch a cold let alone a mouse.

The mouse hadn't been there when we first got in, so he must still be alive to come out from under the chair, where I assumed he'd been hiding since Bob's stalking spree that morning. So I took it he was playing dead.

The cats? Oh they were nowhere to be seen. Neither use nor ornament those two. They were asleep on the bed. 

'Can you get rid of it please Mummy?' asked the boy. 

He wasn't scared, just inconvenienced. This apparently dead mouse was currently lounging all over his Octonauts Deep Sea Octolab and he wanted to be getting on with his adventure thank you very much. There are no mice in the ocean. They are not legitimate sea creatures. We'll gloss over the fact Captain Barnacles is a polar bear; mice are not part of the game. 

I made that noise you do when you don't know what to do. You know the one. That sort of whining,

'Errrrrrrrr... ummmmmmm.....ahhhhhhh......'

Then a flash of inspiration struck me. I ran to the recycling and grabbed a jam jar and lid. 
The offending rodent was still laying motionless on the carpet so I tiptoed towards it and scoped Mr Mouse up with the jar. I popped the lid on the top and moved quickly to the front door, where I let the little fella go into the front garden.

All the time the boy was following my adventures and when it was done he clapped his hands enthusiastically and declared,

'Well done Mummy. That was brilliant. Can I have a snack now?'

'Yes of course you can darling' I smiled 'Just let me disinfect everything within an inch of it's life first.' 

Bloody cat......... 

Friday, 7 November 2014

The One With The First Week Back

I think half term discombobulated the boy.

Don't get me wrong, he loved being at home, seeing both sets of grandparents, trips to the zoo and the park, going bowling with some of his NCT mates, having play dates with Lemon Cake Boy and Vintage Songstress and her lad and finishing the week with a Halloween tea party and trick or treating.

We packed a lot in.

I just think, especially when he started playing up and being on the want all the time, that this holiday lark was slightly overwhelming. 

The boy needs structure. That has become abundantly clear this week on our return to school. On Sunday we talked about going back and getting everything ready again after half term. Luckily he didn't seem phased. I thought he might because when he was at nursery and pre-school he still went even during the holidays, albeit on shorter hours. The only time we ever had a holiday was when we actually went away somewhere. So the whole concept of half term and then going back was pretty alien to him.

I needn't have worried. When it came to pick up time from school on Monday he was like a different boy. 

Sat in the back of the car with his snack and drink he suddenly enquired,

'Did you have a lovely day Mummy?'

He then proceeded to tell me what he'd had for lunch and something about what he'd done that day. Unheard of. He's since been a darling all week. No bother at all. 

All a far cry from the screaming, sobbing child having a tantrum on the floor of the local museum gift shop because we wouldn't buy him an £18 dinosaur, which led hubby to unceremoniously pick him up and bundle him out of the door after our trip had lasted... oh.. all of 2 minutes. 

It was probably our fault for trying to do too much. School takes up such a huge chunk of the week that when you do get some time together there's this need to make it special. In reality the boy would've probably been just as happy watching Scooby Doo and Frozen over and over again whilst drinking strawberry milk and eating digestives. It's us parents who feel that we have to provide endless activities.

And for this I blame Facebook.

Confronted with constant statuses of ever more elaborate fun filled days out by parents and their kids over half term 'keeping up with the Jones' is now on a global scale.

And it's not just fancy holidays and self congratulatory selfies on family days out with everyone looking happy and no one crying or screaming or throwing their water bottle at a llama. My timeline is full of proud boasts of how little Johnny, who is probably only 3 and a half, can play Beethoven's Moonlight Sonata or is fluent in Arabic or can read the complete works of pissing Shakespeare already! 

I'm pleased for them, no I really am (she says through gritted teeth) but in this house it's all about little victories. If the boy picks up a crayon and does a scribble we feel like we're won the FA Cup. 

Maybe I'm just jealous because with a child with SEN, I don't feel like we have much to boast about.

So I gave it some thought and realised, yes we do..... yes we bloody well do.

So here goes. Excuse me while I have a damn good boast

The boy is:

Funny - he has a wicked sense of humour and can time a joke to perfection. He's a natural at it.

Creative - his imagination is amazing. He can also weave his current favourite book, TV show and film along with everything and everyone around him into a story.

Musical - he will sing, dance, drum and strum in time and learn the words to songs really quickly. He'll even start riffing new lyrics to tunes once he knows them well.

Kind and Caring - he doesn't have a spiteful bone in his body. He may be hyper and over exuberant at times but he never means any harm. He genuinely loves people and is just so happy to see you. He hates to see his friends cry and feels upset for them. 

Polite - he's got lovely manners even down to saying good morning to the cats when we all wake up. 

Playful - he immerses himself in his games but he doesn't always need toys to have a good time. Give that boy a pile of cushions, a blanket and some cardboard tubes and he'll build dens, forts and castles for hours. 

Good looking - I know I'm bias but the boy is proper handsome. If he does end up being 6ft 6in he could be a top model and keep his mum in style in her old age.

Loving - he tells us he loves us everyday and we tell him too. Then at night just before he goes to sleep he lists all the people in his life he loves. 

Helpful - he tidies his toys away at the end of the day without complaint and helps me cook and bake. He will lay the table and take his cup and plate out to the kitchen. 

He may not be showing many academic traits, yet, but he's the most gorgeous, gentle, loving, kind and wonderful little boy I've ever met and I'm honoured to be his Mummy.

I'll take that over being able to speak 10 languages and having grade 8 clarinet any day.