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Conversations with my 5 year old

So, this just happened.

When me and Sammy are apart for more than a day, Sammy has taken to asking for long phone conversations. Like 2 hours long 🤭 About things like… the zombie he defeated in his game today… or the hats we are wearing today. 😴

We are close Yes, hats. I can’t talk about freaking hats for any longer! So like any decent parent – I try to distract him from the topics he is actually interested in, squash his spirit, and indoctrinate him with what I like. I mean… broaden his horizons. Yes. I like to broaden his horizons.

Today’s topic? Politics. Specifically: why I wasn’t hanging out with Trump while I was in DC.

The conversation went something like this:

“Well, bud, the thing is that Trump and I don’t agree on a lot of things so I don’t hang out with him”

“Like what? What don’t you agree on?”

“Hmmm… well, you know when you go to Callum and Finn’s? And Finn can eat really fast and wants to eat all the pancakes? And after he’s eaten lots I make Finn stop, and make sure you and Caroline have enough pancakes? Well, Trump thinks that if you are good at eating pancakes you should have all the pancakes you can get… I think you should have lots of pancakes, but not let babies like Caroline go hungry, just because they can’t eat quickly…”

“Trump sounds like a very bad man”

“Well… I don’t know bud… I don’t think he is very nice, but some people like him and you have to make up your own ideas about him”

“What else does he do?”

“He’s just not very good at sharing bud”

“Is this like when Caroline wants to dump all the sugar on her pancake, but you say she has to have a sensible amount so that we can all have some sugar? And when she ends up with more that everyone, you just say I have to just look at my plate, and if I have sugar then I don’t get to worry about Caroline’s sugar?”

“Yes”

“But if she takes all the sugar, and I have none, I’m allowed to get mad then?”

“I guess so”

“Trump is very naughty! He’s going to get in trouble!”

“Ha! Funny you should say that! He already is!

“Why?”

“He colluded with the Russians”

“What does that mean?”

“Well… America is a country, like England where Mummy is from is a country, and Russia is a country… and America – and England for that matter – don’t like Russia.

And Trump was friends with Russia”

“I don’t understand”

“Like, think of someone who did something really bad, like they might to go jail bad, and Trump is friends with them”

*gasps* “Mummy! Is Trump friends with the man who stole all your money?”

“…..”

“That’s so bad. I don’t like that man”

“…”

“He and Trump should go to jail together!”

“…….”. “So bud, guess what? I bought a new hat today… it has ears like a cat!”.

Never discuss money, religion or politics with polite company. Or with your 5 year old…

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Protected: And just like that…. I became middle aged.

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Any readers still there? A Password is a-coming

It’s been a crazy few months. Anyone still out there to share my stories? I am going to start password protecting this site, so if you are a friend (or follower) near or far and would like to stay up to date with the Frazier/Wood adventures… drop me an email to get the password to access future posts (oh, and to make me feel a little loved out here in Houston so far from home… ).

Send this form, and I will ship you back the password…





 

 

And until I get some password protected posts up… here are some pictures from the past few months…

I did a podcast!

A friend of mine invited me to do a podcast on motherhood for her friend / client Lisa York. I agreed! You can find it (and also a brief summary of it) here (warning: loads a little slowly), on Lisa York’s SuperMum website.

Yes…. SuperMum. I have to admit that my friend asked me to do a podcast and I was all “yeah! yeah, sure!” and never really asked what it would be about (I know.. I know). Then ON THE DAY of the podcast I listened to some of the archived podcasts (which I loved!), and dug around in the site and found out that it was all about tips for motherhood. Interestingly, not parenting per se, but motherhood – how to keep sane, or keep happy, or just keep going while “mum-ing”. For example, there were tips on how a quick morning meditation can help your day, and how to have a quick “mummy reboot” or how to “Find Your Lost Identity”. So, my immediate reaction was to look at my unwashed hair and creased clothes, and the general disarray of my life, and think “Cripes, I have got literally nothing to offer here”. It is not unusual for me to wear the same clothes three days in a row because I didn’t have time to wash / choose / think about anything else. There. I admitted it. Be grateful I use Febreeze y’all.

Lularoe cassie pink classic T

Unwashed hair in bun, make up non existent, T-shirt left over from yesterday… and off to work I go. For realz y’all.

Plus, I was worried Lisa would also want parenting tips, and I don’t give parenting a lot of thought. I’m not saying I am a brilliant parent-er, but through a combination of over confidence and and inertia (I like to think inertia sounds better than laziness) I I just mostly do what feels right at the time, somewhat in consultation with the other ‘alf, and rarely actually take stock of what I am doing. I mean, I am prone to suddenly going “ermagahd we all need watch less TV” or “waaaaah, the minions are not being adequately controlled by their masters and anarchy is on the horizon in this household” but at these points I can’t think of a time where I have investigated HOW to watch less TV, or HOW to control the parasites. I just sort of try to do it for a little while, and when a new panic comes [“We all need to take Probiotics everyday or we’ll be 20-stone and ridden with ebola!”] I forget about the old one, and who knows if I actually effected any behavioral change.

I am totally on board that I could do things better, and that my kids could be better in some areas, but I am just not motivated enough to like, read a book about it, or an article. Or, let’s face it, even a listicle (unless it has super amazing gifs, including one of Ryan Reynolds (Greatest Dad Ever TM) in his underwear). I do love that plenty of my friends read this stuff, because then when I am whining that my kids can’t do a basic human act like sit at the dinner table, I can absorb their collective wisdom (nicely digested, synthesized and often tested) as I sob into my Malbec.

Toddler feeding doll

Caroline may be more of a SuperMum than me

So, I totally freaked out, but Lisa (who runs the website and its podcasts) was ah-maz-ing and told me just to be myself and then gave me a write-up that made me even want to listen to myself (to be clear: I have not! Ha! I am way too awkward and worried that I’ll sound like a fool or spend all the time fretting about my answers to do that). But, I am glad I did it. As we talked about things like differences between the US and the UK, and the fact that I don’t read parenting books, I am super worried that I will offend someone – but still, I am glad I did it. And I definitely enjoyed it. And Lisa seemed to think that the message of “Oh, I’m just winging it because I guess deep down I don’t think what we do makes an enormous difference anyway…” was an OK message to put out there. Or maybe even a reassuring one. So, if you needed to here it – there we go.

I’m winging it and you can too 🙂

Sam being a SuperParent

But also, it was good that one of Lisa’s goals with SuperMum is just to tell mum’s stories… and I really enjoyed listening to those – kind of like an audio blog if you will. I’ve subscribed on itunes and I am trying to listen to new podcasts on the way to work, so maybe some tips will seep in after all…

Oh, and at the end of the podcast every person is asked to give their definition of a SuperMum. Apparently the most common definitions involve happiness and health. I won’t tell you what my definition of a SuperMum is (go listen to the podcast!) but can I just make a plea that we stop tying success to happiness and health? Both of those are gifts that are only somewhat within our control. It’s easy to agree that someone who has cancer / has children with cancer (i.e. the health part is tough) is no less a SuperMum than someone without. So, can we generalize and say that someone who is depressed / has children with depression – or is even just struggling to be happy and content right now – is also no less a SuperMum. And this obviously goes beyond parenting: your success, and your worth and your value does not have to tied up to your health and happiness. It’s up to you to decide what it is tied to…