Aimee Horton

When you need that cup of tea.


If you follow me on Twitter you are probably aware that I’m not a morning person.

I used to be. I’d happily wake up, and whilst Matt was still asleep skip downstairs make a cup of tea, heading to the study to do some work. This was probably at my peak of enjoying my marketing career, the retail peaks were exhilarating and created a natural buzz I used to love logging on and seeing what was happening.

Then I had the boys.

Suddenly my early mornings aren’t a choice any more. I no longer lie in bed for a few moments taking in the silence, before springing out happily preparing for my day. No. Not any more. I can’t say I don’t have a variety of wake up calls, because I do.  Its not just the boring alarm turning on Radio 1 (ok 2) and iphone ring tone for me any more. No. It can be any one (or more) of the following:

  • sob>scuffle>thud>*sobs proceed*
  • “Hellooo puppy calling do you want to play with me, let’s have fun together while you learn your A B C”
  • “I NEED RECTUS NOW MUMMAY” (rectus = breakfast)
  • noise of a door opening > thump of giant fat baby footsteps > dribble in eye as mouth closes over my nose

The list is endless, but whoever said variety is the spice of life is lying.  It’s not.  I liked waking up quietly, calmly, traditionally.  In a routine if you please.

Now my morning brew is required more urgently.   That sweet taste of tea and kick of caffeine is a must of a morning.  I often lie there next to Matthew and whine grunt “TEA”.  He used to be rubbish, never used to do anything, just headed straight for the shower leaving me with nappies, pooh, dribble, snot and general noise without having anything other then left over water to sip on and wake my brain up.

So one morning, after a particularly rough night where he was foolish enough to claim he was “exhausted” after I’d been up five MILLION times whilst he was snoring away, I formulated a plan.

When I say the words “plan” it may sound conniving. Perhaps makes me sound a tad manipulative. NO.  It’s a survival mechanism.  If I am going to make it through the day, even through the next few hours, I NEED a brew.  With two sugars. NO DARLING I DON’T CARE IF IT’S BAD FOR ME – STOP PUTTING ONE SUGAR IN, I NEED TWO!

Anyway, it’s not that bad.  I’ve just recently not found the time (I’m very busy at the moment *cough*) to iron him any shirts for the week.  Therefore, I crawl out of bed and throw myself into the shower, and leave him to nip downstairs, iron a shirt and while he’s there he might as well make me a cup of tea.  Is there anything wrong with that?

No. I didn’t think so.

I even let him take a sip of it.  If by “let” you mean “have no choice”.  By the time I’ve witnessed it from across the room and leapt across the bed dropping my hair dryer on the way, I can’t stop him, I can’t catch him, my “noooo” comes out in slow motion.  The first sip of a Mum’s cup of tea is sacred.  EVERYBODY know this!

No, I’m not being dramatic, it’s just that it’s probably the only warm taste of tea we’ll get in twenty-four bloody hours and we want to bloody enjoy it.


When you get a glimpse of the future


The other night I couldn’t sleep.  Matthew was asleep on the sofa (mouth wide open and snoring), and I was stuffed up with cold feeling sorry for myself with a honey and lemon.  I was flicking aimlessly through the channels for something that didn’t require too much attention but kept me mildly amused.  I landed on a show from my youth, one I remember sitting in bed in my bedroom at my mum and dads house, on my own laughing at every Friday night.  Probably not laughing at the full joke, but got the gist.

Harry Enfield and Chums

Two sketches in particular tickle me (that proves I’m old doesn’t it?  When something “tickles” me).  The first being Harry and LuLu – a pair of “toddlers” where Harry, the eldest plays innocent whilst hurting/hindering/or setting up his little sister LuLu.  This rings so true, as Fatty apparently taught The Beast to say “DIE DIE DIE” (well, he was the second excuse after trying to drop one of the teachers from Pre-School in).  The hero worship in LuLu’s eyes as she’s lead to trouble is also a familiar sight as I’ve often witnessed The Fat one being lead towards the cat, the TV remote or stair gate.

The second is more terrifying. More unnerving, more unsettling then any other sketch I’ve seen on the television ever.  Why?  Because it’s my future.

Kevin and Perry

As that clock chimes and the 12 year old turns into a teenager I see my future unravelling before me.  Admittedly The Beast isn’t as nice all the time as Kevin the 12 year old seemed to be (although he’s equally if not more hyper).  In fact he already has elements of a teenager with his strops and his answering back, his stubbornness when he doesn’t want to do something, along with his amazing ability to not hear certain things, but I swear if I even type a tweet containing the word chocolate or Spiderman he hears me.

Why am I scared I hear you ask?  After all, my three-nager doesn’t clean the toilet after a number two (or the floor after a number one).  He has been known to say he hates me when he doesn’t get his own way, he moans through any dinner that isn’t chips, he looks at me with an expression of confused bafflement when I question him about his day at school, his taste in music is already far more advanced then mine, and he frequently reminds me that I’m not cool.  I drive him everywhere and I pick up after his trail of destruction as he sits open mouthed gazing at the television.

But what fills me with fear, more then anything else, is when Perry bumbles in.  Perry.  The slightly clumsy blunderbuss.  The slightly chubby pale faced one, who appears to be easily led but actually has his own mind.  Oh wait, who does that remind you of?  That’s right.  The Fat one.

So I’m going to have two of them.  Two stinking, grumpy, aggressive teenage boys.  Boys that have spots, that shout at me, that slam the doors, that swear and lie, that suddenly are obsessed with boobs, and their mates, who’s washing is three times the size.  They will probably smoke, drink, stay out all night, and I can’t see them saying “I love you bestest in the whole world mummy” while asking me to give them a kiss and spiderman lifting him up to the ceiling cuddle. Also, at 7 o’clock, I’m not going to be able to put them to bed smelling clean and fresh, shut the stairgate, and that be that until morning.

I have no way of stopping this, no way of ensuring that my sons turn into cool, polite, nice children.  I’ll try my hardest obviously, drumming please, thank you “pardon stop muttering” into them.  I’ll engage with them on a regular basis, but as far as I’ve been made aware, as hard as I can try, teenagers are tricky characters.  So instead, I have to prepare, prepare for the grunts, learn what to get cross about, what to let go, and focus on the good things (lie ins being my number one priority).  There’s no point arguing with them, it wont get me any where.

Plus, they’re going to be bigger then me.

When they get hurt.


Urgh.  When we have children we all prepare ourselves for the pain that goes along side it.  Not just the day to day stuff which includes constant yabbering and back chat, or the lack of sleep, but the pain of them actually hurting themselves or being ill.

I knew there would be numerous trips to the doctors, and probably some to A&E too.  It’s a sick feeling that sits in the bottom of my stomach every time it crosses my mind.  Now, nearly four years in to the whole parenting debacle, I would have to say (and as I type this I know I’m probably jinxing myself), we’ve been fairly lucky.  We’ve had rashes, allergies, cuts, bruises, falling down stairs, but nothing too serious.

As you know from my last post Fatty has just started walking, gained real confidence, started to walk to objects rather then just people, and he’s really happy, gets this MASSIVE grin on his face.

Yesterday he took a tumble.  We were in the lounge and he was heading to the coffee table as he’d spotted his current favourite reading material (the NEXT catalogue – I’m so proud!), and was going for it.  We were all sitting on the sofa, Matthew and The Beast sitting watching a movie, and I was just catching up on a few twitter conversations and text messages.  I saw it happen. He’d picked up speed, he started to fall forward, he reached for the table, he fell short.  He cracked his head.  He cried.  I feel awful, I missed him, I’d chucked down my phone I’d reached forward, but it was all in slow motion, I wasn’t fast enough.

There were tears, Matt raced from the sofa because he’d heard the THUD and asked if he was bleeding.  I didn’t think he was the bit I thought he’d hit was just scuffed, then he lifted up his head.  Blood poured down his face into his eye and ear.

I grabbed the tissue from the tissue box (poor Miffy tissues probably didn’t expect to be used to mop up blood), and Matt raced to the bathroom and I ordered him to use my cotton wool pads instead of his answer to clearing up everything – loo roll.

It all happened very quickly, and amazingly calmly.  While I was rocking my big fat sobbing baby, we had the running commentary from the beast:

“MUmmy SHHH I’m trying to watch the film, Mummy, look I’m spiderman KSSHH KSSSSSHH”

I discover the cut is almost an inch long.  We discuss it and whilst it’s stopped bleeding relativly quickly and he’s stopped crying, we decide to call “111” for advice.

“Mummy, can we play trains?”

I get on the phone, I speak to THE QUIETEST PERSON IN THE WORLD.

He’s asking questions. “Is he restless Mrs Horton?”

“‘SCUSE ME MUMMY, ‘SCUME ME MUMMY, I want to play trains now, you be the yellow train and I be the red one”

Me: “Well, fairly, but then you would be if you had blood in your eye wouldn’t you?”

Startled silence: “How would you say he is restless Mrs Horton?”

“Mummy, Mummy, look, my nail needs cutting”

Me: “well in the normal upset way I guess”

Sounding confused: “Well….is he gasping for air?”

Me: “OHHHHHH BREATHless.  I thought you said RESTLESS, no.  He’s fine”.

Eventually they advice is as expected.  A visit to A&E.  This is where I admit what a horrible mother I really am.  I didn’t think “oh my poor baby”, I didn’t race there straight away. I thought “oh ffs”.  I know that’s wrong.  But I kind of knew there wasn’t much wrong with him really, other then the massive cut that wasn’t really bleeding anymore.

So first we packed a picnic.  Warmed up the pasta and sauce he was going to have for tea anyway, a yoghurt and some biscuits.  I packed a bag with some toys and books.

This might sound strange, but The Beast fell down the stairs at 10 months old and we were there for HOURS, I know how long these things can take.

I left Matthew and The Beast playing trains.  We drove up, and checked in (for want of a better phrase!), and sat down.  Around us were sick people (obviously). Big ones, little ones, bloody ones, vomiting ones, coughing ones, ones in wheel chairs, one with slings.  Urgh.  There was a child with a sweet wrapper stuck up her nose, and a little boy about the same age as the Beast with a big bloody lump his forehead, his mum was sobbing.  He was quiet.

I got a few dirty looks as I fed the Fat one his dinner, he didn’t help by making “mmm” noises, smacking his lips and getting cross when we ran out.  We were seen by the nurse.  She had to help me get him back in the pushchair as he tried to escape.

We sat for a bit longer.  He ate a biscuit and read his book.  A few children gathered round me, I handed out books and toys.

We got to see the Doctor within two and a half hours, which actually, I don’t think is all that bad.  I gathered up my books and toys and went in.  He took one look at the fat one and said “that’s an easy one”.

He glued him.  There were more tantrums.  He shouted at the Doctor a lot, told him not to touch, kicked at him and shook his head when the doctor started to talk to him.

We were dismissed, we were free.  We drove home, and got the boys in bed by 7.15pm.

I woke up every hour to check on him to make sure he was still alive.  He was.

This morning he’s fine, he keeps knocking it, it looks pretty ugly, but it could have been a lot worse.

I have a feeling this is just the start.  Do you think I’ll be allowed to take Gin in my pack ups?