39 articles Articles posted in Humour

First Pictures of the Royal Baby

As you know, from THIS post, Princess Kate is a close personal friend of mine*. She allowed me to use the first full-frontal nude picture of her in my last post and now she’s granted me another exclusive. Obvs, the Royals are well minted and that, so they have access to advanced technology and using some super up-chuff imaging, they had a picture taken of the Royal baby…and have given me a copy to use on Mum’s the Word!

Needless to say, I’m thrilled, what with me being such a Royalist and everything!**

So, without further ado, here is the FIRST EVER picture of the Royal baby!
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The Pitfalls of Having an Intelligent Child

Sausage is a very intelligent kid. She’s one of, if not the, youngest in her class and she reads at the top level with kids who are a full year older. Her teacher is constantly regaling us with stories of “amazing” things she’s come out with in class, like the time they were discussing The North Pole and the things you’d find there. The other kids were saying things like snow, ice etc. Sausage sat thinking for a while then shoved her hand confidently up before offering “Arctic Orcas!”. As most of my readers probably know, we’re big on Natural History lessons in this house, so that was a fairly normal thing for her to come out with by our standards, but apparently she’s not an average 4-year-old!

Now, for the most part, having a bright kid is fantastic. She has a thirst for knowledge that Husband and I love to quench and we spend a lot of family time learning together. However, at times, it can be a challenge. Here are just a few of the ways in which she keeps me on my toes.

Smart-Assery

With Sausage’s level of intelligence comes a concurrent level of confidence that, at times, can be a little maddening. Often, she’ll ask me a question only to reply to my answer with “I KNOW!” and I’ve lost count of the amount of times in her life that I’ve said the phrase “Well if you already know, why did you ask me?!”

She’s also been known to reply to my accusations of smart-assery with “Er, no Mummy, I think you’re a smarty-pants!”, the response to which is usually my head spontaneously exploding. Don’t get me wrong, she’s never naughty or obnoxious, she’s just genuinely that confident of her own brain, which is good…I guess!

She’s also started questioning my reasoning on things. She’ll often counter my answers to requests with “Why?” and on more than one occasion I’ve done that thing that I said I’d never do…”BECAUSE I SAID SO!”. Sometimes, there just is no other answer.

Spelling Test

In the past, Husband and I could do that thing where if we didn’t want Sausage to know what we’re talking about, we could spell things out. We knew it wouldn’t last forever as she’d learn to spell eventually, but we didn’t expect her to become so exceptionally good at it at such a young age. As a result, we now speak Pig-Latin when we’re being deceptive, but I’ve seen her looking at us and working out what we’re saying when we do that too, so I guarantee it won’t be long before she’s EAKING-SPAY right back at us…

Stimulation

Most kids, aged four, are probably happy to do one thing at a time. Sausage, however, needs a certain level of mental stimulation to stop her from being bored, which means that, and I’m not exaggerating here, she’s often doing three things at once. At this very moment, she’s watching TV, writing in her pad and playing a game on her Nexus 7. All of that is fine, I’m happy for her to entertain herself in whatever way she wants, but sometimes it can be exhausting trying to keep up with her!

Play Time

She’s very much into that girly thing at the moment of role-playing. She’ll say “Mummy, do you want to play with me?” and then bestow me with an elaborate script of things I have to say in response to what she’s going to say. And if I don’t do it right the first time, often she’ll stop and we’ll have to start all over again, complete with grand entrances on Micro Scooters and all sorts. I love that she has such a vivid imagination but it’s not always that easy to stay on top of the web of character and plot development that she weaves and I fear I’m a massive disappointment to her.

Emotions and Comprehension

Sausage is a sensitive soul and up to a point, we were able to shield her from some of the harsher realities of life. The thing is, as she gets older, it’s harder to keep things from her. We don’t always know right away when something has seeped into her big brain but sometimes, she’ll seem overly sad or emotional and it will turn out that something has upset her like a news report or something she’s heard a snippet of and she’ll have spent however long trying to process it. Emotional development isn’t always in-line with intellectual development and it can be heartbreaking to see her brain grasping a concept which she’s too young to know how to react to.

So, do you have a intelligent kid who runs rings around you too? Or am I the only one who’s being totally bested by a four-year old?!

Is She REALLY a Domestic Goddess?!

drawer-dirtyEveryone has at least one friend or relative who makes them feel like utter rubbish when it comes to matters of the home. You know the type, they usually have a gaggle of children all of whom are studious AND sporty, perfectly coiffured hair, a Cath Kidston tablecloth on her scrubbed wooden table, which sits in the ‘heart of the home’ kitchen with the Aga and Le Creuset casserole dishes. She has a job but also manages to volunteer in a charity shop and chair the PTA at her kids’ school. She’s provides her family with gourmet, highly nutritious meals every night of the week and still manages to keep her home looking like it’s straight out of the pages of Country Living. Oh, and I bet the bitch makes all of her own dresses too. And she’s amazing in bed.

Well, I’ve got 5 surefire tests which will help you discover if this paragon of domestic virtue is really all she seems. The Domestic Goddess test, if you will.

1. Check her Plugs

Does she have those automatic plugs in any of her sinks, the ones where you pull a lever or twist a dial to get them to pop up and down? She does? Right…pull it all the way out. There’s a plastic cage around the bottom to stop large items from going down the sink. If this woman is a Housework Charlatan, her plug cages will be clogged with hair and soap. They may have even gone brown or black with the soap residue.

2. Open the Washing Machine Drawer

Pull her washing machine drawer open. Just like the plug cages, washing machine drawers can go reallllly black and gunky if you don’t rinse out the washing powder and fabric softener residue. Any self-respecting Domestic Goddess will know this, so if your mate has gunky drawers *ahem*, you know it’s all a front.

3. The Dust Test

Okay, so even a homemaking halfwit knows that dust is a dead giveaway when it comes to giving an impression of cleanliness. Most people, however, if they are a total bodger, will only bother with eye-level. You want to get up HIGH, do they have an 8-foot bookcase? Get your hand up there and run it along. I bet it’s dustier than a bricklayers back pocket.

4. Lift The Couch Cushions

Let’s face it, this woman probably has antique Chesterfields or something, but if she has a sofa with detachable cushions, lift up the seat pads and take a peek underneath. There could be a multitude of sins hiding under there and only a real domestic goddess would have remembered to vacuum in the nooks and crannies.

5. Turn on the Shower

Limescale. It’s a son of a bitch. We’ve all seen the Barry Scott magic where you spray Cilit Bang on your showerhead and the jets start miraculously coming our straight again, but have you ever actually bothered to do it? Maybe your pal hasn’t either. Turn on her shower. If it sprays you in the face at a 90° angle, she’s limescaled up the wazoo and probably a pretender to the Queen of Clean throne.

So, there you have it. Five surefire ways to make you feel better and to effectively derelict the reputation of your “Wishes She was Nigella/Kim/Aggie rolled into one” pal.

**Disclaimer: There’s a very good chance that if you go around someone else’s home turning their shower on, lifting the couch cushions or scaling their bookcase, you may not remain friends with the for very long. And if you do need to go to these lengths to make yourself feel better, maybe a good look inwards is what you need.

You’re a dirty bitch. Deal with it.

Alternative Valentines

With Valentine’s Day fast approaching, I thought I’d hop aboard the Hallmark bandwagon and have a peruse of The Broadway during my lunch hour and see if I could find something to surprise Husband with in the morning. I went into a shop that sells generalised Object D’Art and other pointless, middle-class tat and noticed that they had some cards, and I toyed with the idea of getting one, despite the fact that we don’t usually do greetings cards.

The offerings on display reminded me why. There was either unbridled schmaltz with “You’re my Soul Mate” plastered all over it, homogonised sexuality declaring “You’re a Love Machine!” and attempts at romantic humour with “Me Love You Long Time!” (although, quite why anyone would give a card to their loved one with a famous phrase uttered by a Vietnamese prostitute in a war film is quite beyond me). Each and every one of them made me feel nauseous. There’s no way I’d say any of the things written on these cards to Husband, despite the fact that I love him and if I believed in soul mates, he’d probably be mine.

I got to thinking that I’m probably not the only one who feels like this, so I thought I’d come up with some alternative Valentine’s Day card slogans, for those of us who like to keep our breakfast down.

“To My Husband – Thanks For Making Me Feel Sexy, Even Though My Neck Smells of Baby Sick”

 

“My Darling – I Love You (especially when you put your dirty washing in the laundry basket)”

 

“Roses are Red, Violets are Blue, You Cook a Wicked Steak and I Right Fancy You”

 

“I’ll never be as young or limber as I was when we met…but I’m a better cook now, so that makes me about even, right?!”

 

“Fuck it, Let’s Get a Bucket”

 

What would your perfect Valentine’s card say?

“Mummy, I don’t like looking in the mirror.”

Husband, Sausage and I popped into town today for a bit of a browse. We were having a mooch round TK Maxx and they’d walked off ahead of me but as I caught up, I saw Sausage do something that I found really disconcerting. As she noticed herself in the mirror, I saw her frown deeply and then turn away with a look of disgust on her face.

I mentioned to Husband what I’d seen and we both proceeded to question her on why she’d frowned like that, however she clammed up and started to get upset. My mind was racing with a combination of scathing indictments of modern society and the pressure placed on girls in terms of appearance, positive affirmations that I could give Sausage which both reassured her but stopped short of piling too much importance on aesthetic and blackout-inducing rage at the thought that someone may be responsible for damaging her confidence.

Husband was still trying to extract an explanation from her when she looked him straight in the eye and said:

“I don’t like my reflection Daddy, because it always copies me”.

How To Be British

I saw a newspaper headline yesterday and annoyingly enough, I can’t bloody well find it now. The general jist of it though was that a new study has shown that something like 75% of British people want immigration to be halted, especially Eastern Europeans (if anyone has the link, please hit me up with it in the comments). Now, to be fair, tabloids should generally be taken with a pinch of salt, so I’m not going to start doing an Uncle Albert-style intake of air, but I am surprised that it’s at 75%. I’m not sure about the demographics of the survey participants either, which is a factor.

However, in the spirit of giving, I thought I’d give any Eastern Europeans, or indeed any immigrants, some tips on how to truly integrate themselves into the British way of life and avoid the (blatantly middle-class) glare of disapprovers. Here’s the Mum’s the Word guide on How to Be British.

Be Shit At Your Job

This particularly applies if you’re a manual labourer, though far be it from me to stereotype. If you do, however, do something manual and want to appear truly British in doing so, this is what you need to do. When asked for a quote, make sure you make the job sound akin to single-handedly building a replica of the Great Pyramid. Suck air over your teeth a lot, make lots of hmmm-ing sounds. When you do eventually get around to giving a quote, make sure it’s 4 times higher than you’d normally charge for it. Tell the client that it’s going to take at week and then drag it on for over three months. When actually performing the task, be as conspicuous as possible so as to disrupt the person’s life and spend a large portion of the day making rasping noises with your throat to hint that you want another cup of tea.

Claim To Know A Gangster

This one particularly applies if you’re living in the South East, but no self-respecting true Brit can resist dropping in a reference here and there to how their Grandad was bezzy mates with Ronnie and Reggie, or how Pate Tate was like an Uncle to them when they were growing up. No-one is truly British without a story about the Krays, in fact I think they’re thinking of making it part of the citizenship requirements. Adopting phrases like “It’s not a bit of me” or cockney rhyming slang will also help greatly here.

Put Up With Shit Service

There is nothing more quintessentially British than allowing someone you’re paying to treat you like shit. Stroppy waiters, dodgy shop staff and customer service agents who don’t know the meaning of the term. And don’t forget, the worse they treat you, the more you bend over and take it like a good little Brit. Make sure you still leave a tip, even if you’re certain that was a bogey floating in your soup.

Insist That The Majority of Your Food is Tasteless Sludge

If food isn’t in pie form, it’s foreign muck. If you holiday abroad, make sure there’s a pie and mash shop/chip shop/greasy spoon at the resort, otherwise you’ll starve. Declare garlic to be disgusting and any meat that’s not roast beef to be pointless.

Dress Appallingly

This.

Pearly Knobbers

Pearly Knobbers

 

(Disclaimer: Please be aware that this post is entirely tongue-in-cheek. I’m proud to British and all that jazz, this is just a response to more tabloid fuck-wittery)

 

So, You’ve Eaten a Horse Burger?

Horse Meat

If you read the news/go on Twitter/listen to the radio, you’ll no doubt be aware by now that several major supermarkets have cleared their shelves amidst findings from an independent report which showed beef burgers to contain up to 29% horse meat. The chances are, if you’ve eaten a burger from Tesco, you’ve probably eaten horse. Are you horrified?

I’m not.

Don’t get me wrong, the fact that they’ve sold cheap horse meat under the guise of beef is wrong for MANY reasons. The cultural implications are mind boggling, especially as 85% of the burgers also contained pig DNA, so many a kosher Jew are probably feeling rather upset right now. Also, just for the plain old fact that if you PAY for beef and you get horse, that’s morally and financially wrong. It’d be called fraud in any other circumstance, surely?

But.

What I don’t get is this; people are up in arms simply about the fact that they’ve eaten a horse and I just don’t get that mentality.

Why is a horse more sacred than a chicken, a cow or a turkey? With Christmas just gone by, are we not upset about the TEN MILLION turkeys eaten in the UK alone? I understand that people keep horses as pets and we’re all quite precious about not eating animals that are cute or handsome, but if it were a choice between my family needing food and Joey running free in the paddock, it’d be horse casserole for tea, I’m afraid.

I’m not hugely worldly when it comes to food I’ve tried but I’ve eaten kangaroo, deer and veal (though I will admit I wasn’t properly aware of what veal was before I ate it) and I just don’t get this thing that humans have about prioritising one type of animal over another when it comes to meat. Most people probably now know that pigs are as intelligent as dogs and while that’s led to a rise in the number of people keeping pigs as pets, I bet it’s barely affected the number of bacon sandwiches eaten by us Brits.

Perhaps someone could enlighten me as to why a horse is more important than a cow?

Until then, I’m going to be avoiding beef burgers; not because I don’t want to eat horse, but because if I’m buying beef it’s because I want to eat a cow!

Mum’s the Word – A Retrospective (Pt. One)

It seems weird looking at the calendar in the bottom corner of my screen and seeing 01/01/2013. This year will be my 29th birthday, Husband’s 34th birthday, Sausage’s 5th birthday, 7 years since we adopted Chuck, my 7th wedding anniversary, my baby sister’s 21st, my baby brother’s 14th….and so on and so on! I remember the days that my brother and sister were born SO vividly and it’s hard to believe that they were that long ago, let alone the fact that I have to get my head around the fact that I’ll have a 5-year-old!

 So, before I look forward to the exciting year ahead, I thought I’d do a ‘Mum’s the Word Retrospective’, a look back at the posts that I’m most proud of from the last 12 months. Yes, it’s self-indulgent, but it’s MY blog, so ner! *blows raspberry*

JANUARY

At the beginning of January, I was saying goodbye to Bob Holness who was a childhood favourite of mine and his passing sparked some fond memories. In this post, I was waxing lyrical about my new iPhone 4. I’m not sure I’d be so effusive now!

This time last year, I was still reeling from the passing of my stepmum, who’d lost her battle with cancer just 10 weeks before. Here I talk about how certain Buddhist teachings had helped me with my grief.

In this post, I share some of the harsh realities of adulthood that I’ve picked up on along the way, but it’s not as grim as it sounds, don’t worry!

FEBRUARY

In this Silent Sunday post, I proudly display the partially erupted wisdom tooth I had removed, despite some people thinking that it was a weird picture of a nose!

This was my first attempt at short fiction. I tried to make a linky out of it but didn’t get much interest, but I was still quite proud of my efforts. Here, I discuss the stress of being a working Mum and how hard it is to relax at times. Finally for Feb, I overheard a conversation in Waitrose which literally tickled me pink.

MARCH

March began with me musing over what I wanted to be when I grew up. Turns out, I still haven’t…Sausage kept us amused with some surprisingly subversive humour for a then-3-year-old.

In a more serious post, I talked about how you tackled the subject of mortality with your little ones, which provoked some interesting comments. I rounded the month off with a satirical post about things that, at 27, I’d realised I was too old to do. This is a personal fave for 2012.

APRIL

The beginning of April saw Husband and I changing our strongly anti-Barbie stance, me doing some serious Sausage related trumpet-blowing, attempting to talk about the dangers of Melanoma and celebrating my move to being self-hosted with a post about being reborn.

MAY

At the beginning of May, I wrote about my Nan and Grandad, which is still one of my favourite posts ever. I also mused about what it would be like if our brains were like a computer harddrive and posted a Silent Sunday featuring a very personal subject for me.

This month also featured part one and two of my Cybher run-down.

This post about parental choices was one of my favourite posts because of the debate it sparked in the comments. I still stand by my original thoughts, which were brought into sharp focus later in the year with the horrible events in the news. I often wonder how people’s opinions will differ now.

JUNE

The beginning of June saw me thinking about the parental instinct to protect and why it’s lacking in some people. Here’s another favourite Silent Sunday, featuring a house-guest we had with us for a while. This photo was one of the things to spark the idea for Closer to Nature, a linky that I started later in the year.

I was having a pretty bad time of things in June and this post is me trying to make sense of my thoughts and feelings, the prevailing being that of loneliness. Later in the month, I also discuss euthanizing a beloved pet and when is the right time to say ‘enough is enough’.

 

A bit of a bleak finish to the first half of the year, but I’m amazed to see how much I wrote in that time. I hope you enjoy reading through and come back for part two!

Happy New Year from Mum’s the Word.

Yellow Days

Is That a Sword in my Washing Machine?!

Ahhhh, housework. My favourite thing to complain about. Let’s face it: it’s boooooring. And largely thankless too because no sooner have you emptied the washing basket than it’s full to bursting again. There are a few things that make my life a little bit tougher in this area too. Firstly, Sausage. It’s not that I mind washing her clothes. It’s that, if she had her way, she’d change outifts about once an hour. Sometimes, I think she deliberately gets herself mucky just because she knows it means she’ll get a costume change. The kid is worse than Elton on a World Tour. She needs her own wardrobe lady, or at the very least a dedicated washing machine, just for her stuff. It’s got worse since she started school too as now I have a constant stream of paint-spattered polos, gravy-smeared skirts and cardigans with those tell-tale white streaks up the sleeves which tell you that, despite the packet of Kleenex in their pocket, your kid has been cuffing their snot making the washing pile twice it’s usual size.

Then there’s the dog. I know it may seem odd that the dog creates a lot of washing, but to this I say; you’ve never met my dog. Apart from the pile of dirty old towels that regularly build up from all the foot wiping we have to do when he goes out to the garden because he insists on using the soles of his feet to scent mark the whole garden, he also likes to lay on stuff. Anything that’s vaguely soft and left within paws-reach gets laid all over, leaving it smelling of dog (and sometimes fox, given his obsession with rolling around in that in the garden) which means I have a constant stream of dog-besmirched items, such as Sausage’s Hugglebuddy, which has spent more time in the washer than is natural for a purple unicorn.

The problem is, all of this usage means that my washing machine has seen better days. It’s supposed to be one of those silent machines that only hums gently even when on the most vigorous spin, but it sounds like an epileptic Dalek even when it’s on Gentle. I suspect that’s not entirely aided by the array of things that I find in with the wash, even after the most rigourous screening of pockets before a load goes in. Stones, marbles, Barbies, a spoon and a small plastic lion have all been items found nestling within the freshly laundered contents of the drum. How the door has never smashed is a mystery. Then, yesterday, I saw this:

Look it it, just sitting there, right at the front, TAUNTING me, the audacious little scrap of plastic that I had to watch, going round and round and round. It’s the final straw. The final insult. (Dramatic? Moi?!)

I’ve decided a need a new washing machine.  In fact, my current machine is like the mechanical embodiment of me – overworked, smells a bit odd, full of rubbish. No, wait, that analogy didn’t quite go to plan, but the point is, I NEEEEED a new washing machine, specifically a Hotpoint one and I think John Lewis should give it to me because I totally deserve it!

Why Gangnam Style is So Culturally Important

A few months ago, I heard Husband laughing heartily in his office, followed by a yell of “Hun, you HAVE to come and see this”, so I went in and watched what can only be described as  the video for one of the most sublime pop songs I’d ever heard. It had a catchy tune, a killer beat, (and this was the clincher for me) a dance that I could do to accompany it. Could I sing along to it? No, not without a few thousand hours of Korean lessons, but it didn’t matter. Over the next few weeks, we listened to Gangnam Style at least once a day, usually while Husband was trying to work and Sausage and I were horsing around his office, but it made us all laugh.

Then, Husband mentioned that he had Psy’s (the singer of Gangnam Style) album, which I started listening to while I was jogging. It’s a mixture of classic pop and funky R&B sounding tunes and it’s obvious that Psy has real talent. Of course he does, the bloke has released 7 albums and 18 singles. People have obviously responded, it’s become an enormous phenomenon all over the world, reaching Number One in the singles charts in approx. 23 countries and charting highly in dozens of others. It’s had almost half a billion views on YouTube, and that’s just the official version. As far as I’m aware, this is the first time a Korean-language song has even charted in a country outside of Korea, so the achievement is incredible.

The reason that I think this is so significant is that it seems to have opened the whole world up to something a bit new. Aside from the fact that we’re having fun and taking the mickey out of ourselves, just a little bit, we’re listening to music IN A DIFFERENT LANGUAGE. It sounds ridiculous, but this is a huge  deal. England in particular seems to be full of people who don’t want to experience things outside of their scope of comprehension. If I had a pound for every time I’d heard someone say “Nah, I haven’t seen Amelie, it’s got subtitles, innit?” I’d have…well, a fair few quid. I want to scream and shout and strangle people because they, through wilful ignorance, don’t even know what they’re missing out on. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg.

Because English is so widely spoken in the world, we seem to have this sense of linguistic entitlement and feel that people or other things are worthless if they don’t communicate in our language. I know someone who lives in a foreign country and has done for many years and when I asked if he was fluent in their native tongue he said “Well no, we only really talk to English people out there…” which really shocked me.

We’ve encouraged Sausage to be as broad minded as possible and I genuinely hope that something a simple as a slightly spoofy K-Pop song has got the ball rolling in opening more people up to other cultures and made some much needed reparations to peoples opinions of multiculturalism.

And to Psy – we thank you, for so many things. But most of all, for the dancing.

I’d love to know what you think of all of this. And more importantly….can you do that dance?!