Aimee Horton

When you realise you’re not cool any more.


Last night, during the bath and bed time chaos, I suddenly had an epiphany. I’m not cool any more.

I’m not saying I was ever THAT cool, but I’m SURE I had something about me. I must have. Surely.

It’s been playing on my mind for a while now, with two teenage nephews, I was sensing I was losing my touch, my geekiness was no longer “down with it”, it was just, well, “down”. But in my mind I still had a glimmer of hope, my love of clothes, celebrity and american trash, surely that meant SOMETHING.

However, last night, whilst I was teaching my wet, naked, three year old son how to do some dance moves and duet with me to “Let’s get ready to rumble” I lost that glimmer of hope. If I was cool it would be something by, er. Who’s cool right now? I’m guessing that the era of B*witched has come and gone hasn’t it?

I suppose I shouldn’t be surprised, The Beast requests the “1, 2, 3 song” in the car frequently (Girls Aloud, The Promise), and the songs I sing to my children are far from hip, for example we have “Dressed for Success” by Roxette, “We’ve got to eat it up” (Something Kinda Ooo by Girls Aloud), and “What the fatty fatty? what the fatty fatty? What the Fatty Fatty FAT BOY LARRY” (Fat Boy Slim). Plus, my day to day music taste is pretty much BC (Before Children).

Since last night, I’ve continued to dissect my life, my personality. I’ve come to the conclusion that I’ve not been cool for a while. Would a cool person refer to Rosé as “roséhoséjosérosé”? Would a cool person know ALL the words to EVERY Britney Spears song out there? Would a cool person take photographs of everything they cook, right from laying the ingredients out to the final plate presentation? Would a cool person remove a “bogie” from their 17 month old sons nose at the Doctors and wipe it on the seat whilst the Doctor was printing a prescription out on the computer? Would a cool person actually clap their hands in glee when they discover there are some more kitchen accessories in the Next Catalouge which match with their pvc table cloth? Would a cool person refer to things as “Gr00vy” and “Wikid”? And finally. Would a cool person cry at the final of Americas Next Top Model? (Oh, and would a cool person be told by their three year old son that that’s not cool”). No. I think not.

Where did it all go wrong? Was I always delusional? Was I NEVER cool? Or perhaps it was when I had the children? Was it the constant battle to not have a proper changing bag, just a mightyfine handbag that wore me down? (I managed with The Beast, but when Fatso came along and I had two sets of stuff it wasn’t as easy). Or perhaps it was the day I chose to wipe sick off my shoulder with a wet wipe rather then changing my top before I went out? Was it my job? Or is it just age. Was it a steady decline?

Either way, I need to decide what to do now? Do I wake up and start trying to get down wiv da kidz? Risk becoming an embarrassment, the Madonna of Lincolnshire suburbia, as opposed to the fabulous at forty Kylie? Or do I accept my fate? Succumb to my future? Become frumpy and middle aged gracefully?

Is there an in between stage that I need to know about? Is there a “not necessarily cool, but not down right dull” stage? If so, how does that sit? What clothes do I need to wear, and most importantly, can I still have Gin?

When you make the ultimate sacrifice.


As parents we all make sacrifices, and as you are all aware I frequently moan discuss them in this blog.  There are the little things, not drinking whilst pregnant, getting fat, stretch marks, late nights, early mornings, clean tidy houses, the ability to leave the house with less than 20 million hours preparation, the list is endless.  However, for me, there is one sacrifice which has been harder to swallow than any other.

Sharing. My. Food.  For those of you who don’t know me very well “Aimee doesn’t share food”.  This isn’t just me trying to be a character from Friends (apparently I don’t have to try, 99% of the time I’m Monica, just ask my family). Anyway, it’s true.  I may have had a rocky introduction to food until I was about 18 (I tended to live on peanut butter and jam sandwiches or pizza and chips).  But I’ve always been quite, er, let’s say, protective of it.

A good example of this would perhaps be my first date with Matthew.  We went to the cinema – we saw The Faculty for those of you who are interested – and Matt said “we’ll just get a big bag of whatever you fancy and share”.  I HONESTLY thought he was joking.  I mean, SHARE sweets?!  I thought no more of it, picked up a big bag of Opal Fruits (NOT Starburst) and trotted in, my mind on whether he’d try and hold my hand or “maybe more” (by maybe more maybe try and put his hand on my knee).  Anyway, half way through a scary scene, he reaches over…my heart beats with excitement, I KNEW he fancied me, I KNEW we weren’t “Just Friends” as we pitched it to each other…I try and pull myself together, then suddenly a rustle.  I realise he’s putting his hand in my bag of sweets.  Without thinking I slap his hand away.  I have to do this three more times before he gets the message.

Yes.  I’m surprised he married me too.

Anyway, these days people know not to come towards my plate if I’m holding a knife and fork in fear of getting stabbed, if Matthew nicks a chip off my plate I redistribute before carrying them across to the table. But, since I’ve had children, things have changed somewhat.  I SHARE MY FOOD WITH MY CHILDREN.

How did it happen? What changed me? Am I perhaps softening in my old age? To be honest, I’m not sure.  Possibly.  All I know is that every meal I have with my children, without fail; I share some of it with both boys.  Whether we are eating the same, or I have something different, I end up stabbing and passing.  I notice that Matt doesn’t do this, except maybe a bit of meat off his Sunday roast.  I give up WHOLE Yorkshire puddings (sob), bits of pastry, spoonful’s of curry, bites of sandwiches, handfuls of crisps and nibbles of biscuits.  I ENCOURAGE my children to try my food.  This utterly selfless gesture goes unnoticed.  Often rebuffed by the eldest child, turning his nose up or wrinkling his forehead.  Bagels get licked then thrown on the floor; pasta gets stolen from the plate and discarded for a pea.  The list is endless.

So why do I make this sacrifice?  I want my children to enjoy food and have a healthy attitude towards it. I want them be adventurous with what they eat, to see it as a fun and social part of the day.  Oh. Plus, every now and then I break out the “nursery” food, and share fish fingers and potato waffles with them…after all, it’s a two way street isn’t it?!


When they lie in the middle of the path.


Urgh.  Readers, friends of readers, parenting experts…I need your help.  The Beast has me at the end of my tether because of a lot of things (being 3 is one of them), but most of them I can work my way around, however, there is ONE that I’m stuck on, it’s been going on for ages, and I just don’t see a way round it.

He wont walk anywhere.  Well OK, slight exaggerations, but he doesn’t get very far.

When we’re out and about just me and the boys, I tend to walk off and hide round the corner until he catches up, but even this technique isn’t reliable any more…I’ve tried coaxing, I’ve tried telling off, I’ve tried ignoring, I’ve tried threats, I’ve tried bribes.  But he just sits/lies there until you give in and carry him.

I’m fairly good at holding my ground (see where he gets it?), and when I’m with good friends/family they usually wait it out with me.  But what do you do when you’re out with newly acquired nursery friends?  This is what happened today.

We met at the park on our third play date with his best friend from Pre-School.  I really like the mum, but feel totally inferior (she just appears so natural and in control), and so I quite enjoy the times we’ve met up, except for being on the edge hoping The Beast doesn’t let me down.  He’s not been bad really.  Until today.  We were doing so well, we’d played in the park, we’d fed the ducks, and we’d walked through the woods while the boys pretended to be Spiderman and we chatted with prams.

I was feeling quite chuffed, we were doing well, he even looked appropriately dressed for once (I’d managed  to coax him out of his Buzz Light Year costume and into Jeans, Boots although not wellies – Snow Boots) big coat, gloves and hat.  He’d been nice and polite said please and thank you, but I noticed he was getting slightly irritable, slowing down a bit, fake falling over a lot more.  It was coming…I knew it, we managed to turn around we were heading back to the car…we were going to make it I knew we weren’t.

Suddenly, we both hear “THEOO GET UP” and his friend is shouting at us “WAIT MUMMY WAIT” .  My stomach falls.  He’s lying in the middle of the path, width ways, bikes are going round him and dogs are jumping over him.  We manage to coax him to stand up and keep moving…then it happens again, and again.

I give in and carry him, we’re in a hurry and I feel sorry for the mum, she’s frustrated, but feels sorry for me.  We get to a muddy bit, and so I have to make him walk again, we nearly make it there and then he spots a muddy puddle, he looks at me and he looks at the puddle.  He goes and lies next to it.  In the end I give in and carry him under one arm, we make it past the main bit, pushing Fatso with one hand (who’s shouting at me as he’s refused to nap), he spots loads of puddles, says he’s not tired any more and runs through all the puddles soaking through his snow boots and socks.  He bursts into tears saying he’s cold and tired.

I’m now embarrassed. HOW do I make him walk?  WHAT can I do to make sure he doesn’t just LIE on the floor and not care?

Oh.  And even if I wanted to…he wouldn’t go in a pushchair.