After school, if it does not rain we hang out in the garden, in a desperate bid to tire the kids' endless Duracell energy out. We have a game of football, although I always seem to be at a handicap with Esmie in my arms…..Oh yeah, and my complete ineptitude, much to the frustration of my 7 year-old son, Monty, at the sport too! My lack of football capabilities and my general bit too girliness does not stand me in good stead next to my “come on mum, let’s have a fight and rub mud in each others faces” son of 7. And plus, he has 3 sisters….poor thing! But I really do make an effort, flinging myself on the floor in a halfhearted sort of attempt to look like I have done a running skid across the pitch to impress my son. However this time, Dad is there too…..Girls V Boys, uh oh! The girls in our house may tip the scales, no, not because we have collectively bigger bums, but our sportive qualities are, unfortunately, nothing on the lads. Still, the girls have time to learn, at 5, 4 and 2 ½….for me, however at the ripe old age of 32, I believe everything is now too late. And life has snowballed me up on the way down a never ending, well, one day ending, mountainside, and you do not even have youth on your side……Boooo! Anyway, the football. Alex was not showing me any special treatment, and I was in goal with him pelting footballs at my shins like his life depended on it. I have touched upon the fact that I am a complete whoos when it comes to pain, and therefore I was floored, on several occasions in agonising pain, saving the ball. My pain was obviously hilarious to both Alex and Monty, who turns round to me and says “suck the pain in mum and get on with it.”…..Now where have I heard those words before?? ALEX! (shouting voice necessary here).
Still, suffice to say the boys won. (23:1) Lola mooches around on the pitch, randomnly sprinting at any given moment as if there is a live wolf after her, half laughing, half terrified, with daddy coming after her to get the ball. She is very tall for her age (none of the others is, she is 18 months younger than Monty, and has nearly always been taller than him! But don’t tell him I said that), as she runs she is a little gangly and a wee bit jerky in her running skills, bless, but she makes a concerted effort nonetheless. A typical girl, the minute she is tackled, she bursts into tears. Mitzi joins in a bit, but after a while I think she sensed the competitiveness between mum and dad, and mum and son (!) and looks on from the safety of the swing, in intense horror. Esmie stays clinging for dear life in my arms and I am still unsure as to whether or not she enjoyed the experience……….
I turn my attentions to haircuts, as I have to. Monty has a “pretty” face and with 3 sisters already, I am quite frequently asked if I have 4 girls, (again, do not tell him I mentioned that either!). So out come the clippers. Note to self: get to grips with clippers, before trialling haircuts on the family. That’s how well it went, Monty asks me repeatedly, “mum, MUM! Why are you attacking me?”, he didn’t believe me when I said it was just a haircut. The impression he had of my technique tells a story of how delicate my hand is! I am somewhat disappointed with the results, but I am going to apply myself, practise on the girls' Barbies (I imagine they’ll all come out as Rogers, Bobs and Barrys after…..), and anyway, it’ll grow back right?!