Mission Impossible…the Crap Baskets!

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So here it is. Saturday morning and the detritus has hooked up, bred and multiplied! We were at this exact same situation last week! Can nobody remember to take things upstairs and put their ‘stuff’ away?! (Me included although I am now getting better!)

I made a rule, doing my slightly bossy/exasperated bordering on losing it altogether impression (this generally commands the attention of those its intended for!).

“Right, if there is something on the stairs….THAT YOU HAVE TO STEP OVER TO GET UP THE STAIRS…pick it up and take it with you. If you don’t know where it goes just pop it on my bed.” (one smug Aloha Mummy I can tell you!)(Notice the word POP).

Well, the smugness only lasted a day!  Everything I gathered from around the house and placed right in the middle of the stairs (there was no way it could be missed!) was suddenly uncategorized, unclaimed, assumed to be mine …….and dumped on my bed.  There was clearly no ‘popping’ involved! By all accounts I was now the owner of the Red and Blue Power Rangers masks, a loo roll, crumpled laundry, a Star Wars lunchbox (I did not put that on the stairs…I’d put that in the kitchen!  The blighters are sourcing additional ‘Stuff’ to add to the pile!), Harry Potter Trivial Pursuit, Lego, Lego, Lego, a party bag with the obligatory whistle (thanks for that birthday child parents…you wait!), plastic yoyo and spit bubbles, an Angry Birds hoodie…I wont go on!

Ok. Another plan needed.   Think…think… (I felt like Winnie the Pooh; perplexed facial expression and finger tapping my temple….)  Got it!

“Right, if I call your name come to the bottom of the stairs and take your pile of stuff that I give you upstairs!  I will only give you things that are yours or believed to be yours.  If they are not yours, seek out the person to whom they belong and trade as they will probably have something of yours too! If you think it is something of mine just pop it on my bed.” (smug Aloha Mummy once more!)

Nope.

This didn’t work either.

I still ended up with the toilet roll…dumped (pardon the pun!) on my bed.  Again, no popping was evident given that the roll had in fact unrolled and now spread from the foot of the bed to the pillow.

After some more thinking, tapping of my temple and most importantly me allowing my  ‘Monica side’ to kick in, I had it!

Behold the Crap baskets!

So, if  you haven’t yet discovered these little beauties, listen in!  I bought 4 baskets which each sit on a stair. Each basket is owned by one person in the house. When  the basket is full the idea is that it is taken upstairs or around the house and all the contents are returned to their original lodgings. ‘A place for everything and everything in its place.’

In the initial stages this worked quite well. Baskets were regularly de-cluttered, I didn’t have to leave trip hazards on the stairs and I had no loo roll strewn across my bed! Result!

However, this small victory was a little short-lived.  I began to find that as the baskets grew fat and full, ‘stuff’ began to cascade down from the higher baskets to the lower ones. I began to find, once again, all sorts of items -which were not mine, taking up residence in my basket. To be honest all that ever seemed to be in my basket anyway was an umbrella and a pair of sunglasses – loving the British weather!-a pot of nail varnish which I never seemed to have managed to get around to using, baby wipes, handy pack sized tissues and a hair elastic.

I began to feel defeated. Until…Lightbulb! My plan was simple, genius even, but surely too good to be true?!

I gathered the basket owners.

“When you hear the music for Mission Impossible it means that you immediately stop what you are doing! You run to the bottom of the stairs and claim your basket! You must then get all the contents of the basket put back into their rightful homes.  But!  You must get them put back before the end of the music!!! If you succeed and your ‘stuff’ is replaced and your basket returned to the stair empty  before the music ends, you may have a sweetie!  If you do not succeed and the music ends before your basket is returned….sadly you may not have a sweetie! …But you must still finish emptying your basket! (needed to get that one added in!)

I must add here that this was for all of us. Hubs, Aloha Mummy, Twin 1 and Twin 2. Admittedly I would have a head start because I would be pressing play on the cd player (yes…I am that old fashioned!)

But, do you know what though? It only bloomin worked!  IT FLOOPIN-LOOPILY WORKED!! We had clear stairs, a fun game and sweets! (I won’t mention a tune that stuck in our head for months!!!

Dum dum, dur dur dum dum, dur dur dum dum, dur dur dum dum dur dur, dudel-ummmmm, dudel-ummmmm, dudel-ummmmm, dur dup!

This solution worked so well…until 8 weeks ago!  Now we have our new Bubs I like to keep the stairs completely free of everything – can’t be doing with any trip hazards! So now, the baskets live somewhere else but we still have the same process…baskets fill, music plays, challenge is laid down and accepted, sweet awarded!

Sweets of choice at the moment- Bananas and Shrimps!

So, how do you keep your stairs clear (and ensure your sanity!) and what would your choice of sweet be?! Will you take on the Mission? Will you fill your life with the Crap Baskets?!

The Aloha Mummy 🌸

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The 4.37am feed and the Dawn Chorus.

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Well, the birds are awake (just) so why not us too?

Now, I know that with a newborn feeding takes over your life be that feeding by bottle or breastfeeding. Feeding on demand can be …well..demanding (obvs!)

Currently we are experiencing the 2 hourly night feed situation and I must admit that this time round, with one little mouth to feed, so far, this seems to be a doddle! Having had twins to feed when we first became parents was, without a shadow of a doubt, a MASSIVE shock to the system! One of my best friends ‘Bean’ and her fella found out they were expecting twins, 2 years after we had ours and on a Twin Group night out, her Fella and my Hubs had a chat..

Bean’s Fella “Go on, tell me the truth; what’s it really like? Having twins?”

Well, ask a stupid question….Hubs is not one to mince his words and his response totally hit the mark.

Hubs “Carnage mate. Carnage!!”

Talk about a conversation killer! Bean snorted the lemonade out her nose! Fella looked ready to cry. The rest of the table fell silent. A tumble weed drifted past.

So, like I say this time around, with one Bub, we are coping insanely well! Taking the Night Shifts in turn seems to be a stroke of genius! One night I do my shift of nappies and feeds; the next Hubs does his shift. One of us gets a night’s sleep! Huzzar!!

I’ve always said that all I ever wanted to be was a Mum. Now I am a Mum to 3! Bit of an age gap but it is actually very beneficial. The Twins adore their baby sister and are so actively involved in her needs that it’s like having live-in entertainers!! (So far this week I’ve managed to wash my hair twice! Woo hoo!!)

For the time being, and it will be short-lived as time passes so cruelly quickly, our new Bubs needs us. We are her world and her world runs on a  24 hour clock.  So at 4.37 am with the birds in full song, whilst giving Bubs a bottle it occurs to me that all those Mum & Dad birds out there have their own little baby birds to feed too; with their wide gaping mouths eagerly awaiting a juicy caterpillar or crunchy moth.

We are all busy parents, whether we be feathered or freckled but this is the joy of my life. And, to be perfectly honest, sitting up in bed at 4.37am cradling my beautiful Bubs whilst she drinks contentedly, and listening to the magic of the Dawn Chorus right outside my window, is blissful.  It is good for the soul, a moment of meditation of sorts; knowing that all my neighbours, Hubs and Twins slumber on but I get to share this wondrous moment with my baby and Mother Nature.

From experience I know that this stage, although all-consuming at the moment, will only last a relatively short time. Twin 1 and Twin 2 are 10 – where the heck-a-roonies did that time go?! (Pretty sure that I’ve accidentally missed out a school year or two and that no one has picked me up on it!) We have to consider Secondary Schools now!! Again…What the heck?!!

I guess what I am trying to say is, embrace this time. Take those precious moments into your heart. Smell your baby’s hair (Sorry…sniffing things again! See Debut Blog Post ‘How many things have I sniffed today!) stroke your baby’s cheek, snuggle into your baby’s cosy neck and gaze in wonder at your baby’s tiny hands and wide glistening eyes and think to yourself how you, you clever Mum, made such a gorgeous little human. Well done!!! These moments and thoughts are what will get you through those times when your baby is crying. Loudly. Inconsolably. Like a banshee!  Remember the magic you have given to the world. I salute you, you fellow baby vomit covered Mumma!!

The Aloha Mummy 🌸

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How many times have I sniffed something today…

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It has suddenly occurred to me that I sniff things…a lot.  I hadn’t noticed it, or even given it much thought until today, as I was walking down the stairs with Twin 1’s school jumper which I had found buried under football kit, swimming trunks and a sock on his clothes ‘resting’area.

We were just about to head out the door on the school run – yes, I have sent him with a jumper today, down here in deepest South Devon we are not experiencing the tropical, lounging about weather that Philip and Holly have just been supping cocktails in and parading on my tv screen.  No.  We have low lying cloud, thick drizzle and steaming pavements due to a small degree  of warmth. It makes me think of those scrums you see rugby players in when they steam away!  Enjoy your heatwave London! Was that a Thunder Bug I just saw flit past my window?

Anyway, back to sniffing.  It has to be some primitive  instinct to ensure that:

a) something is safe to eat and not gone off

b) a predator will not hunt you down because of your scent

c) offspring are presentable

d) you yourself are presentable

e) you do not smell like the remnants of your mini offspring’s last projectile incident

f) you get that little tummy skip moment when you smell your Hubby’s cologne on your soft fluffy jumper (and keep you going through the day which has so far consisted mostly of e) incidents)

g) to double check if that nappy which you JUST changed has somehow refilled the moment you have hoisted mini offspring aloft to secure in the car seat.

(I’d better stop…you still there or have you nodded off?! Apologies!)

I recall vividly 10 years ago now, being in the Hospital SCBU unit with the Twins right after they were born. Twin 2 was in need of extra support whilst Twin 1 had a sticker on his incubator reading ‘Lodger’ to ensure no Dr’s gave him treatment he did not need.  At night the kindly Midwives would scoop the Twins up and take them to the Nursery allowing me time to sleep – such a blessing!  With the curtains pulled around my bay on the ward I would know, by the scent alone, which Twin had been brought back to me ready for a feed.  Without being able to see him and with no indication from the Midwife, I simply could smell which of my beautiful babies needed me.

They smelt completely different but oddly similar – a mixture of newborn sweetness, warmth and fuzziness.  I still experience their smells now, when they are ill.  They exude the same curious, soft and gentle aroma.  They don’t have a clue what I’m on about but from this individual scent I can tell that, in a few days, they will have come down with some bug or other.

Motherhood.  Instinct. Evolution. Survival.  Who knows what the scientific explanation may be for this, but I know in my heart that it’s a blessing, a gift and a magical power of us Mums.

So, how many times have I sniffed something today?  Hmm?  Well,

  • Twin 1’s jumper (passable).
  • Bubs’ nappy.
  • Some questionable clothing dropped betwixt the Twins bedroom and the laundry basket (most definitely not passable).
  • Bubs’ nappy.
  • The milk (good job I did that).
  • My clothes (to see if they smelt of baby or just if I stank in general).
  • My hair (to see if it smelt of breakfast smells).
  • Bubs’ nappy.
  • Bubs’ nappy
  • Bubs’ nappy.
  • Bubs’ – (nope no need to get too close to that one, pretty blatant that one!) nappy.
  • The Brie (I appear to have gone off Brie since falling preggers and having Bubs so that just smelt odd anyway. Maybe it’s because I haven’t eaten it for 9 months?)
  • The damp laundry which I have just discovered in the dryer (has that been there 2 or 3 days and can I get away with not rewashing it…)

Well, you get my point!  I sniff things, a lot and I bet you do too. Go on, I dare you! How many things have you sniffed today? I bet you surprise yourself!

The Aloha Mummy 🌸

 

 

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Aloha! 🌸

Well, this is me! On this exciting little journey down blogging lane! Who knows where we will travel, what gems may be uncovered from here on in…(exciting isn’t it?! Bit like Bagpuss, wondering what Emily will bring to the old shop next!!)

My aim is simple; to share with you the goings on in this little Aloha family of which I am Mother to 3 – Twin 1, Twin 2 & brand new Bubs,wife to Hubs, chin rub provider to Cat, & friendly face to our 2 Guinea Pigs.

With a background in Dance & Performing Arts as performer, choreographer & Lecturer, I shall be actively seeking out theatre performances, dance shows & drama projects created for & by children & young adults. Mostly in & around the South West but hopefully, also with the possibility of further afield.

Some aspects of this blog will cover other areas of me, The Aloha Mummy…

Fitness (as I try to regain my pre-baby body) with help from my amazing friend & former student, now a hugely successful Personal Trainer.

Homestyle & Crafts a glue gun, left handed scissor  & craft knife look into the life of a creative Mum! Warning May Contain Glitter! ‘May’ contain glitter, who am I kidding…will most certainly contain glitter!!

Circle of Friends where there will be adventures, nights out & quite predictably alcohol fuelled craziness!

So, join me as I throw my thoughts & discoveries out there… for all to see…open to comments…from all opinions…from anybody…(Gulp!) & breathe!

Here we go…Jeronimoooo!!