When you look through other people’s baby photos you usually encounter the same kind of scenes-cheeky photos of bare derrières in the bathtub, smiles mid air in a swing and of course the shot where baby is wearing the parents sunglasses on a lovely summers day.
However, this is not true for myself. My mother has a serious addiction to Snapchat. My formative years are being captured and recorded with me wearing dog noses and bunny ears. She always has to get in on the action too and subsequently change her Facebook and WhatsApp profile photo.
In twenty years time, when I look back on these photographs with my future life partner, what on earth will they think?
Today I have screamed constantly. I screamed on the way to nursery and I screamed on the way home from nursery. I screamed at lunch and I screamed at dinner and all the time in between. It has been one of those bad days where I’m just not feeling my usual jolly self. Everything has annoyed me. Not being allowed to dispense my mothers hand cream all over the interior of the car was definitely the trigger this morning and the frustration and aggravation has carried on from there.
I will be the first to admit that I am an emotionally charged creature. I find it cathartic and essentially necessary to release my emotions into the atmosphere like a confetti bomb which explodes and rains down on the people around. Most days this emotional bomb emits sparkly joy and glittery laughter however, occasionally, you may find it shatters the sky with tears of annoyance, screaming tantrums and general non compliance to any reasonable request.
My mother has many ways of dealing with days like this. These include stepping over me and totally ignoring my screams and frantic rolling about on the floor to consuming one Turkish Delight after another whilst hiding in the bathroom until her nerves have stopped jangling.
I shall now retire to bed, rest my bones and collect my thoughts.
Every once in a while it is important to take time out, put life on hold, and concentrate on yourself. Even if its just for an hour or two, everyone should undertake some self care. Not only is it important physically, it will do wonders for you mentally too.
I have now started attending nursery every weekday morning. Whilst enjoyable I have also found it quite exhausting so its imperative I find time for some relaxation. Here are a few ways I like to unwind;
A nice warm bubble bath. Chuck in a few bath toys and novelty soaps and you have a heavenly recipe. (I particularly like the squirty soap from the Paw Patrol range. It lathers wonderfully and leaves just enough scum for my mother to moan about the messy residue).
Meditation. I often find the method of zoning out useful when I need to relax. The tradition way of meditating is to concentrate by repeating a chant or visualising a calming image in ones mind. However, I have found my own unique way of centring. I like to turn the television to the children’s channel and watch the same episode of Bing over and over again until my eyes glaze, my mind numbs and I am practically in a coma. Curiously, this has the opposite affect on my mother who seems to acquire more anxious ticks the longer the television is left on. By the end of a session, I emerge from my meditative state to find Fat Thighs twitching about in the kitchen with her hands over her ears mumbling, “that bloody Bing bunny” under her breath.
A spruce up. I love a good hair cut. I enjoy sitting in the hairdressers chair and making general chit chat whilst my red mane is tended to by a professional. I also feel refreshed after a jolly good trim as more often than not the barber presents me with a lollypop for sitting very nicely. I also like to indulge in a manicure and pedicure every once in a while. I do not believe in paying extortionate, sky high salon fees so I always do it myself at home as I achieve an almost identical job as you can see from these photos;
I implore you, dear readers, to also have some well deserved me-time soon. You shall find that after you have spent quality time with yourself you will feel renewed and ready to take on the day.
After long consideration I have decided I should cast off the shackles of the name “Toddler” and embrace the passing of time with a new moniker for this diary. So, as we head into 2018, my writings shall now be known as the more mature, “Diary of Edward James”.
One cannot remain a small child forever and we all must grow and assume responsibilities. It is inevitable (much to my mothers upset). In 2017 I accomplished some large milestones. Everyone is delighted I no longer require nappies or swim pants. We can all venture out of the house safe in the knowledge that if I need to evacuate my bowels I can alert someone by bellowing, “I NEED A POOOOO”. I shall then be ushered into the nearest lavatory, no questions asked. There are other benefits to having trained everyone to escort me to the toilet when I shout my magic statement: it works wherever I may be, day or night. Which is why at bedtime I frequently use my battle cry in order to prolong my slumber. It. Never. Fails. After having been transferred to the bathroom I can quite comfortably sit on the toilet for a good fifteen minutes and witter on about any topic that cares to enter my head.
2017 also bore witness to me acquiring the skill of lying. Now I can vocalise my thoughts and ideas I no longer need to run and hide when faced with a tricky situation. I use total denial of all knowledge of whatever I may be accused of to escape detection and in turn, punishment. The benefit of the doubt has worked in my favour this way many times. Placing my hands on my hips and declaring through pouting lips that it certainly wasn’t me who emptied the fridge all over the kitchen floor and fed the dog raw bacon can convince any doubting Thomas of my innocence.
The last twelve months have also seen my dancing skills come on in leaps and bounds. My favourite genre is Interpretive Dance as it can be applied to the theme tune of Paw Patrol just as well as any classical tune on the radio. At last my talent is being appreciated and in the new year I am heading off to my first dance class at the church hall! 2018 will be the year I hone my skills and share them with the world! Joy!
I sincerely hope you all have a wonderful 2018 full of happy new experiences too.
After a somewhat hectic period in my life, I have returned to this diary to record my recent on-goings. I shall start in chronological order.
My 3rd Birthday.
At the end of October I turned three years old. As always, to celebrate this milestone there was a Halloween party in the garden. This year the festivities included an enormous dragon bouncy castle with a slide, apple bobbing and a homemade piñata (which lasted two whacks). I refused to wear anything other than my twinkly witches dress and I must say, in which I was definitely the belle of the ball.
Daddy nonchalant with gossamer piñata.
Could not get my little pearly milk teeth into the apples so opted to lick the fruit instead. This was not successful.
This years birthday cake was shop bought and not lovingly hand crafted by Fat Thighs in the filthy kitchen. Thank God. This in itself was a birthday treat.
Day trip to Butlins.
In the October half term we were dragged to Bognor Regis for the day so I could experience that very British institution; The seaside holiday camp. Butlins is a place where you can go to the funfair and engaged in other entertainment as a family. Apparently when my mother was younger it was a budget style get away. Nowadays you need at least £3000 in order to last longer than half an hour in the arcade. It is an expensive escape, which is why we only went for the day.
I played the very important part of a shepherd in my nursery nativity this yuletide. Both of my parents came to see me perform and I can tell they were considering a placement for me at Stagecoach by the way they kept snapping photos and clapping rather aggressively. I do like to consider myself a bit of a thespian however, I have to admit that half way through the play, I got slightly distracted and started nibbling on my shepherds crook and absentmindedly attempting handstands. (In my defence, the main Angel did bang on a bit and dragged her two lines out unnecessarily).
Surprisingly, Christmas this year went quite smoothly. No one was being violently sick or in the throes of a nervous breakdown as experienced in Christmas’s passed. Santa delivered a generous amount of gifts (well, I have been extraordinarily good this year) and the Large One home-cooked our Christmas dinner so as to avoid another festive feast at Jimmy’s World Buffet (Our Christmas at Jimmy’s coincided with the breakdown).
After our Christmas lunch we all settled down to watch a film. As usual the great debate of which movie to select got out of hand and mother commandeered the remote control and that is how we all ended up watching Splash and shovelling Milk Tray into our faces.
I hope I haven’t spoken too soon when I say I feel our family has ended the year on a high.
I am eagerly awaiting the new year and look forward to what 2018 has in store for me.
I wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a wonderful New Year.
I am having a great run of amazingly artistic photography recently and it would be selfish of me to keep them to the confines of my mothers iPhone. Enjoy!
A photo capturing the hustle and bustle of the hall. My fleecy red onesie is hanging on the door in the background. Does it symbolise a comfortable family home? Or just highlighting the fact my mother isn’t exactly house-proud?
Pepperoni pizza for dinner. Nourishment for the soul.
In this picture I have paired the dogs harness and lead with the hallway clock. Its represents how in life we are all bound by the constraints of time. It also shows that we were running late for school.
Self portrait after eating black Playdoh.
“Brothers and sisters are as close as hands and feet.” – Vietnamese Proverb
I am thoroughly enjoying my new hobby. She has moved the charger to a higher power point so my photos may not be so forthcoming now unless I can manoeuvre my trusty naughty chair to help me reach up when nobody is looking. I shall try my best, as always.
A few months ago the light bulb in the bathroom fizzled and died. In any other household this wouldn’t be a newsworthy event. It is an ordinary, every day occurrence which happens in many rooms, in many abodes all over the world. In our home though it is classed as a major incident. This is because the light in the bathroom requires a type of bulb that can only be purchased when the moon is full, the stars are aligned and you have a spare £50 knocking about. It is not stocked in any Homebase nor can it be ordered via the internet. So, after exploring all conceivable avenues in order to replace the bulb, The Lazy One gave up, waved her dirty white flag, and begun to think outside the box to solve the riddle.
And this is what she came up with;
It is a miniature battery operated disco ball.
At first it was a novelty and quite fun. However, after a time having a bath by disco light can make one feel dizzy and nauseous. Using the toilet can also be a trippy experience. Waking up in the middle of the night and having to urinate in the light of a 1970’s discotheque can be disorientating and uncomfortable.
Surely this amounts to some type of child abuse? Being forced to enter a dance-club like environment every time you need to use the facilities is unreasonable and, if it isn’t already, should be considered an infringement of my human rights.
In protest, whenever I enter the room and this light is on, I stick my nose in the air and ignore the Big One bellowing, “OOHHHH, it’s like a SENSORY ROOM!! Aren’t we lucky?! Look at the colourful lights, Ed!”.
I have recently developed a love for photography. It is an art which I adore especially as it allows me to encapsulate the environment from my viewpoint. Todays post shall be a visual celebration of my art. It is a collection of photographs which I took using my mothers iPhone.
This piece is entitled, “Siblings; The fight“. I think I have managed to capture the hierarchical position of frustrated older brother and annoying younger sister perfectly.
This was taken in the front room. It is a little soft toy that appears to be burrowing in to the skirting board to get away.
Squidgy bottom in leggings.
This photo raises so many questions for the viewer. Why is the bottom so soft and flabby? Why choose to clad said bottom in these very thin, slightly see-through leggings? Mysterious…
Legs. A self portrait.
The time I drew on my leg with cheap felt tip pen which didn’t wash off for over a week. I suffer for my art.
For me, this photo has captured the sense of absolute defeat and weariness felt after a long, hard day at work.
Wake Up, Fatty. I Want My Breakfast.
This is my mother simultaneously being woken up by the flash of her phone and my loud requests for CocoPops.
Now this is an interesting piece. You can see how, despite the fact there is a rather large corner sofa installed, the siblings choose to lie right on top of the mother with little regard for her comfort. Note also the glow of the screen as a phone is thrust into the mothers face in order to be shown yet another meme about poo.
This is a photo of me kicking my lazy mother in the lung as I try and rouse her from sleep.
I hope you have enjoyed looking at some samples of my new hobby. I shall add to my collection just as soon as Mother leaves her phone on charge and I can once again kidnap the device.
“The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.” – Franklin D. Roosevelt
In an attempt to install discipline into the household, we have something called The Naughty Chair. It is a rather uncomfortable small wicker chair which has been placed in the corner of the hall. It’s designed to be a tool to aid a “time-out” if you have been rambunctious or cheeky. The idea behind the method is to have quiet time to reflect on your behaviour and accumulate enough remorse to acquire puppy dog eyes and whisper a pitiful, “Sorry, Mummy” (even though on most occasions I certainly am not”) when your allotted time is up.
Now, this technique worked with myself for a few months. I am not ashamed to confide in you that I was actually quite petrified of being sent to the chair. Many of my escapades ground to a halt when I was threatened with a stint in the corner of the hall. However, it was on one occasion after I had completed a rather marvellous mural using the crayons and felt tips in the front room that I chanced upon a thought. Could this chair work for me if I switched the power to work in my favour? There was an opportunity here that I was missing. Being scared of this inanimate object which in itself could really do me no harm was wholly unnecessary. As I sat there with the wicker pattern embossing my derrière, I realised I could utilise this chair and as the name suggests make it a true Naughty Chair. It was at that moment the small chair switched sides and we became allies.
I found that my new friend could assist in helping me reach things that were usually out of arms length. For example, by scooting the chair along the lino in the hall and into the kitchen I could climb up and turn on the light then push the chair over to the refrigerator. Being able to open the fridge was an amazing feeling. Being bathed in the cool light felt magical and the smells emanating from various packets and jars over loaded my senses and made me dizzy with delight!
I can use the chair to obtain a boost and climb up onto the kitchen counters and gain access to the cupboards. I can also open the towel cupboard. I can reach up, pull the towels and sheets out and use them to make a den in the bedroom.
When I am sitting in the chair I no longer sob or wail. I sit in that chair and laugh. I giggle and wiggle and watch my mothers frustration become practically tangible.
By overcoming what we fear we can grow as people and become stronger. So my advice to all who face adversity is this; Have courage, dear friend. Be brave.
At the weekend, despite the drizzle and the colder autumn temperatures, I experienced a family trip to the local funfair. I say “family” because on this occasion my father participated in the activity which made the outing even more significant.
I was thrust into my fleecy all-in-one and boots and we set off into rainy darkness to go have ourselves some fun. On arrival we found there was absolutely nowhere to park the car. People had resorted to abandoning their vehicles on nearby grass verges in a haphazard manner and we reluctantly had to follow suit. We tried to ignore my fathers mutterings about not having a coat as we trudged across the field towards the bright lights and cheery noises of the fairground. The buzz of the fair was exciting and I couldn’t wait to get on a ride. Whilst I wanted to climb aboard the larger rides with the longer queues, I was steered toward the gentler rides which were not quite as busy. My first ride was on the boat. For four tokens, which is the equivalent of £2.00, I was sat inside a little wooden boat and sent round and round until I felt nauseous and dizzy.
My mother stood and waved at me with a manic smile for the full duration. How I was meant to steer the vessel and engage with her at the same time, I really don’t know. This was meant to be enjoyable and not a test of my multitasking abilities!
Both my father and I were made to take a trip on the carousel. This was one of the larger rides on offer and the lights and music were really a wondrous scene to behold. I was eager to climb aboard a majestic golden horse but we were at the back of the queue and when it came to our turn all that was left was a bench. Whilst this was probably a safer option it wasn’t nearly as impressive as the galloping horses with their glorious decoration. My mother watched us as we went round on our bench but this time instead of waving the Old Fool was giggling behind her hand. The reason for her cackling like a witch became clear when we dismounted the bench and looked back at the carousel.
For some reason we had a voluptuous mermaid painted on our seat with her large breasts exposed. It was highly inappropriate and unnecessary and the fact my mother was laughing so hard made me regard her in an even more distasteful light.
Our time at the fair came to end with an extraordinary firework display. Having never seen fireworks before I was absolutely amazed by their colours and loud bangs and screeches. Even my father had stopped mentioning his lack of coat and was watching the night sky with a small smile on his blue-lipped face.
I am now very much looking forward to the 5th of November when I have been promised another family outing to a firework display.
So many exciting things are happening as 2017 draws to a close.