Category Archives: Random Thoughts about Stuff

The best ever game of I Spy

I’m still laughing about this hours later…

So, we’re all coming home from a family trip to IKEA when Little B announces she wants to play I Spy.  And being nearly 4, she has to go first. Here’s how it went:

Little B – “I spy with my little eye, something beginning with G.”

Me and her Dad – “Grass. Gate. Green. Gable. Garage. ”

Her – “Nope. It’s a horse!”

Cue us nearly wetting ourselves laughing…  We’d forgotten she can’t spell. And on top of that, there was no horse.

I went next and decided to do it her way:

Me – I spy with my little eye something beginning with x.”

Little B – “Car. Doggy. Boy. House. Window. Door. Garden. Footpath. Road. Bicycle.” (She’s basically just doing a say-what-you-see.)

Me – “No, Caravan!”

Immense craic.





Technological difficulties

I admit it, I’m a complete luddite.  I know how to use a computer, but when things start going wrong, I’m definitely from the camp of turn it off, and turn it on again to try and fix things.

You may have noticed that I have some upside down pictures on this blog.  It’s doing my head in – I take photos with my iPhone, and if I take them portrait style, I have to edit them to sit the ‘right way up’ on this blog.  BUT.  If they’re edited to sit the right way on the desktop site, they’re the wrong way round on the mobile site.  I thought I found the solution – just take them landscape, all the time.  But oh no.  That was working until I uploaded a post from my phone – cue upside down pictures on the desktop site.  I’ve researched to try and find a solution, but I’m not techy enough to fix it right now, and my host is in the States and requires a phone call to try and sort things out.

So please bear with me until I find a fix.  If you’re out there at all.  I’m not a computer expert and I’m still finding my way with this whole thing.  But I am trying.


Genius child art



Check out this picture my daughter drew of me.  It’s amazing. She’s obviously a complete genius.  It’s like looking in a mirror.

Then she drew one of the whole family:



That’s me on the right.   Originally she forgot to include her little sister but added her in later. She’s drawn herself with ‘Rapunzel hair’.   If you’d like to commission her to draw a picture of your clan, get in touch using my email 😉






Abelfastmum is on holiday

Abelfastmum is listening to waves crashing on to a beach.

Abelfastmum is too hot.

Abelfastmum is burying her feet in the sand.

Abelfastmum is spending a lot of time in the pool.


Abelfastmum is also spending a disproportionate amount of time slathering the kids in factor 50, watching them constantly to make sure they don’t drown, hovering over the cruising baby to stop her cracking her head off the tiles, rinsing sand off dummies, and pretending to be a shark/crocodile/mermaid in said pool to entertain Little B.

See you when we get back….

The holidays are coming…

It’s June, and as a mum of two wee ones, the fear is setting in. Fear of the summer holidays.

Normally my week is a whirl of mums and tots groups, classes, and playgroup drop-offs and pick-ups. Every morning and afternoon during the week, we have an activity of some sort, and that means that I don’t have to think about how to entertain the kids until post 3:30pm. Usually, we then do the park, or get some shopping in, or go visit friends, or go to soft play (but only if it’s raining and mummy is really tired, honest!), and they’re back home by 5pm for their dinner. We have routine. We have order. We do things that TIRE THEM OUT.
Already, the mums and tots groups are grinding to a halt. One of the ones we attend is having it’s final day on June 4th. Our routine is falling apart slowly but surely, with a class stopping here, and a tots group closing there. At least I still have playgroup until the end of this month. But then… WHAT AM I GOING TO DO?
I’ve survived 3 summers with my eldest so far. For all three I was working part time and couldn’t wait to spend time with my little girl on my days off.  This year, however, I am still on maternity leave after baby number 2, and have a very active almost 4-year-old to entertain, as well as a baby to look after.  In front of us stretches all day, every day with NOTHING TO DO.   Hence the fear…

So I am going to throw out the planner, and try to just go with the flow.
We shall have picnics, we shall go to the beach, we shall play in the garden. If it’s raining, we will go to soft play, or visit a museum, or stay in the house and paint, or play with play-doh, or make crafty things. We will no doubt watch a lot of Paw Patrol and Ben and Holly. We will visit family and friends. We will have fun. Because by next summer, I will have had to go back to work, and both of my babies will probably spend their days being minded by someone else, while I sit in an office wishing that I was with my girls at the beach.  That thought alone is enough to banish the fear.  Let’s just hope the weather’s good!


The tiredest thing in the world

This morning, after stumbling down the stairs precariously carrying the baby whilst trying not to trip over the three year old who must go first otherwise a tantrum will ensue, I lay down on our too-short couch and closed my eyes again.  They had barely opened in the first place, but I literally couldn’t keep them open.  From being woken up by the three year old, to the point where I felt vaguely like I could carry on with the day, took nearly 30 minutes.  Until that point, I was questioning whether the kids would be ok if I just took a little nap.  I was pretty sure the three year old would survive, but the thought of the just-crawling baby braining herself on the side of the fireplace just about kept my eyes from closing.  Well, one of my eyes.  It’s been a rough few weeks, what with teething, and snotty noses, and coughs, and ‘I’m scared’ wake-ups, and wake-ups for no reason whatsoever.  I have not been getting a huge amount of sleep…

So, I did what any self-respecting modern mother would do, and I googled ‘the tiredest thing in the world’ on my phone while I was waiting on the kettle to boil for the baby’s bottle.  And, after Google had asked me whether I meant ‘the weirdest thing in the world’, and I’d skipped past some youtube videos of a tired dog, I found an article from the Chicago Tribune dated Dec 21, 1958, titled ‘What is a Mother’s Tiredest Time of Day?’

2015-05-14 08.10.39

It describes fatigue as “the occupational disease of motherhood” and goes on to say that “what is not generally known by the average mother with a child under two is that every mother with a child under two often gets so tired she could cry.”

The article is based on some scientific research done by the Michigan State University Department of Home Management, which had asked 98 mothers to keep a diary of their tiredness.  Mothers get most tired during the week between 4:30pm and 5pm, and 5:30-6pm.  At weekends, it’s 12:30-1 and 7:30-8pm.  There’s some lovely archaic banter about getting your husband ready for work and making sure that he doesn’t get cross by having his dinner on the table when he gets home, but it got me wondering what the results would be like today if they repeated the study.  As homemakers today, we have a wealth of technology to help us manage our homes.  We can do our shopping online and have it delivered straight to our kitchen counter, whereas mothers in the 50’s probably had to shop every day around the local butcher’s, greengrocer’s and bakery.  We have advanced vacuum cleaners and washing machines and dishwashers and dryers which take a lot of the pain out of keeping house.  A lot of women in the 50’s didn’t even have a fridge.  We have the internet for god’s sake, and phones which double as gateways to knowledge and other people, and videos of cats doing funny stuff.  Videos of cats, while not a recognised cure for tiredness, can keep you going for just long enough to get the kids into bed, laughter being the best medicine and all that.

6 of the women in the study reported never feeling tired.  (Who were these women?  What drugs were they on?)  Some reported feeling moderate tiredness occasionally.  The majority though, some 75%, reported very much fatigue.  And the mothers more likely to report fatigue had:
-at least one child under 2
-tried to do between 4 and 9 things whilst feeling tired
-got upset because she couldn’t get her work done
-received more hindrance than help from her partner
-lived in a house which had inadequate household arrangements like a lack of storage or no place for the children to play.

I hear ya, tired 50’s mums.  You’re not so different from us after all.
Here’s a video of some cats sleeping in funny positions to cheer you up.