2020 · March 2020

Help is on it’s way – 04.03.2020

This is the folder of Pops. All documentation that relates to appointments, doctors notes, scribbles of conversations, leaflets and reports.

Around September 2016 Pops started to display what I then called twitches. The first one I remember noticing was her eyes, she would move them side to side like on an action man doll. Not fully understanding what the situation was, I used to get stressed at her doing it all the time. After the action man eyes, came the bunny nose twitch, we’ve had the clearing the throat, we’ve had the raising the eyebrows, we’ve had the constant blinking and now we have the eyes wide. Over time and with a fair bit of research and diagnosis; I have come to discover these actions are all Tic’s. Our baby girl, then aged 6 years old, had developed tics.

Pops has always been our precious; since she was little we’ve mentioned numerous times that she’s in cloud cuckoo land and she was/is happiest when there.

I have been uploading some of my old blogposts recently, and reading them now with the knowledge of where we have been in terms of her medical and mental situations, I can see we have had our concerns with Pops since she was very young. But at the time, it was just Pops, that’s how she was.

Our little Pops is such a caring, kind and clever young lady. She’s a people pleaser and so dainty that she can win over anyone.

We have tried to raise our concerns with Pop’s behaviour time and time again. We have been to the GP and been referred to a Paediatrician. The Paediatrician has referred us to a Dietitian. We’ve seen a Neurologist, ENT Consultant, School Nurse, Health Visitor, various class teachers, School Head, Play Therapist, CAMHS and have lost count of the number of blood tests she’s had. The number of times we have been told, “You need to speak to your GP” to then be told “you need a referral from the school” is just crazy!

Our little precious has anxiety, she is 10 years old and since she was 4, she has had IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome). She has rages over what would seem to us as a small everyday task, like having a shower, that shut down any rational thought. Her mind is constantly thinking of all possibilities to every situation and how best she can please those around her.

But all that comes at a price. And more often than not, if it’s not Pops that suffers physically, it’s Peach and I that pay the price.

You see, Pops likes to wear a mask. When she is at school or in new situations, she puts on the mask and to outsiders she lets them think that everything is ok. But if you sit and watch her when she doesn’t know you’re watching her, you’ll see it. You’ll see the little girl that’s trying her hardest to keep everything together. The little girl that’s battling with the voices in her head, the emotions running around her mind and body and you might just get a glimpse of the little girl who’s struggling.

I’ve attended the Positive Parenting Training recommended by the Health Visitor and School Nurse. I’ve gone along with their recommendations of behaviour management and positive praise. And whilst that may have helped with my methods, it’s not helping Pops.

Her school reports show that she is a clever student, they have no reason to believe there is a cause for concern. She’s either at age related or working towards greater depth. I have been left with feeling like I’m banging my head on a brick wall. Questioning myself as to whether I’m making too much of a fuss, is it my parenting? Am I imagining it? Am I making it a bigger deal than it is? Am I being over sensitive? Why is no-one else seeing this?

However, I have a feeling that we are now talking to someone who has the ability to see what we see, to look behind her mask. Hold tight Pops, help is on it’s way…..

2020 · March 2020

Trash 4 Cash – 03.03.2020

I run two local parent, baby and toddler groups voluntarily; Totstime and Twins at Totstime

Both groups are not for profit and are run by amazing volunteers 😍

That said, the entrance fee that the families pay just covers our expenses of refreshments, room hire, birthday cards and Christmas events. So I like to look at alternative ways to raise funds.

One way we do this is by recycling what others would trash. Today’s picture is just a one item of the recycling that I collect. This is something that most pet owners will dispose of in their general rubbish bin. It’s the pet food pouches.

I am a registered drop off location for Terracycle UK and through them we recycle a variety of waste and raise money for our groups in return. Here’s some of the items we recycle…

And I’m helping the environment too 🥰

It is a big task and yes, it has caused many an argument with hubby that bags of what others see as rubbish are left on our doorstep, and that our out house is currently loaded with recycling for me to sort. But it’s also very very scary to know that with the few people that have dropped off recycling for me, that’s all items that would have otherwise been put in landfill 😱😥😥

Please, please, please, can I ask you to take a moment, see what items can be recycled, find a local terracycle drop off point and help your environment and your local community groups.

I would also like to give a big shout out of thanks to everyone that already passes their “recyclable rubbish” to me. Honestly, I am so very grateful 🥰 – especially those that rinse the pet food pouches 🤩 – you my dears get a big high five 🖐🏻 🤩

2020 · March 2020

World Book Day aka World Parent’s stress week! – 02.03.2020

Oh my word!! Seriously!?! Who came up with the idea of dressing up for World Book Day?

I love reading books, I encourage our girls to read books, I love to listen to audiobooks and I love listening to our girls read to us.

But come on!! Dressing up as a character for school?!?

I have 2Tone who hardly ever reads, but wants to use the opportunity to either wear branded clothes to school that she wouldn’t normally be allowed to wear or, wear an outfit that is very inappropriate for school!

When I refused to refinance the house just to purchase an outfit that will be worn once and then stored away and the fact that we have a loft full of costumes; we then had the mission of rummaging through the boxes in an attempt to find something she will wear.

Minion, Rubels and Pops have had me wracking my memory as to what we have in the loft; which then resulted in a mission of then going into the loft to find said outfits.

And then you have DM, who, bless her, isn’t taking part in dressing up for World Book Day as her school isn’t doing it. 🤦🏼‍♀️

I know it’s a bug-bear for a lot of parents; there are those that don’t have the money to purchase costumes and/or pay the donation to wear said costume. Then you have those whose children attend a school where the school is not participating in the dress up as a character from a book. You also have those that either create the outfit themselves or encourage their children to make the outfit.

I can’t tell you what the answer is, it’s one of those situations where you’ll never please everyone.

All I’m saying is, if you’re one of those parents that’s feeling “aaarrrgggghhh 😫😫😫” about World Book Day this week, I feel your pain ❤️

2020 · March 2020

I see you – 01.03.2020

I see you. I see how hard you work for our family. The journeys you make, the hours you work, the early mornings you wake. I see how physically tired you are when you get home and then get straight on with cooking fresh food for your family. I see the fun you have playing games with the girls, watching their characters, chatting with them about their strengths. I see your tension lift when you listen to music; you search for the right tune to clear your mind and relieve you of your thoughts. I see your enthusiasm when the girls ask your advice with homework and I watch your face light up when it’s science related. I see your excitement for all things music, car or Star Wars related. I see you pick us up a treat each from shopping every week. I see you get wound up with my desire to always help and my obsessive overthinking. I see your organisation and admire the time you take to make the packed lunches for yourself and all our girls everyday. I see your dreams of what was once had. I see the girls smile when Daddy’s home. I see your pride with all that you achieve at home and at work. I see the absolute pure love you have for me and for our girls. I see you ❤️
2020 · February 2020

Baking rota – 29.02.2020

We’ve been planning to make some Crunchie cupcakes for quite a while.

Our girls love to bake with me and when we do we make quite a lot of cupcakes.

I ended up making the cupcakes with Minion today. With the five girls it’s always a battle as to who licks the whisks, who cleans (licks) the bowl and who gets to eat the leftovers 😂

We made chocolate sponge cupcakes, with honey buttercream topping and then placed chopped bits of Crunchie on the top.

After making 34 cupcakes, DM wanted to do some baking too! DM is not a big cake fan, so it was a surprise to me that she asked to make a Victoria Sandwich cake.

She made two vanilla sponge cakes, with a chocolate spread filling, and then topped and coated the sides with a vanilla buttercream and chocolate shavings.

Anyone for some cake??……

2020 · February 2020

Spring clean – 28.02.2020

I started the morning with writing my list of tasks to complete today..

  • Rebound
  • Clean Bathroom
  • Dust lounge/dining room
  • Hoover upstairs
  • Dust hallway
  • Clothes in the loft
  • Sort washing
  • 2 x loads of washing

Do you ever make your list and then feel overwhelmed and wonder where to start?

I find that I make a start on one thing, find myself needing to turn to another task, then another and find myself not actually completing any of the tasks in hand.

My friend shared a photo earlier in the week, and I found that it was a great description of how my days go….

For the first hour of setting to my list, that was me. I was flitting from one job to another and completely losing track of my intentions for today.

But then finally, I found my groove and I actually managed to achieve quite a bit and spring clean all of upstairs. And then, just as I had finished upstairs and ready to start downstairs, it was time to pick the girls up from school.

2020 · February 2020

The wonder of the internet – 27.02.2020

Today is my Daddy’s birthday. My dad lives in America; those who know me well, know that I am a Daddy’s girl.

Nearly two years ago, it was my 40th Birthday. My amazing husband, with the help of the amazing friends and family that I have, got together and paid for my Dad’s ticket to fly over for a week. My birthday present was a hug from my Daddy……

I am very lucky to have such a good relationship with my Mum and my Dad and that although they have been divorced for over 30 years, they can still communicate well with each other.

It was wonderful to see my Dad on Facetime again today. The girls and I sang Happy Birthday to him and we got to hear about his day. Our girls have a great relationship with him too, considering he has been in America since well before the were all born.

Selfishly, I miss my Dad being local to me. When my Mum and Dad divorced, my Dad moved to be near his parents, in Welwyn Garden City. We would spend every other weekend there with him, visiting Aunties and Uncles, Grandparents, or spending the weekend with him on our Uncles Boat Byrona. Whilst I know that on occasions I was a pubescent teenager, stroppy, hormonal and demanding, I do remember that I would always ask my Dad to move closer to us. Even when he got a long term girlfriend in Leicester, he continued to live in Bedfordshire. In June 2004 my Dad flew over to Kansas to meet a lady that he had been chatting to online. With the exception of the travels my Dad undertook as part of his career in the Army, this was my Dad’s first holiday location outside of the UK.

I remember the phone call from my Dad while he was in America telling me that he was having the time of his life and that he didn’t want to come back. I told him that it was normal and that most people never want to leave their holiday location. Then a few days later, I got a phone call from my brother telling me that he had picked Dad up from the airport after his holiday and that he was moving out there. I was absolutely gobsmacked! For years I had been asking him to move from Bedfordshire to Leicestershire with no success, but he went on a two week holiday to Kansas and was moving out there. I genuinely felt like the world was falling away at my feet.

Within 10 months, my Dad had sold his house, moved the majority of his belongings into storage, shipped his prize possessions over to Kansas and was happily married to the love of his life, Sheila.

For my Dad, I am very happy that he found love again, that he followed his heart and he is living his dreams.

When my Dad visits the UK, I am like the small child that just wants to be with her Daddy. I’ll be his shadow, I’ll want to share every moment with him and I want my girls to know him like I do.

I want them to be as fortunate as me; to have loving parents/grandparents around them and familiar to them. ❤