I LOVE the TV show Gilmore Girls so much that when I got married and my husband wanted to buy me a gift to mark the occasion, I asked him for the box set of all seven seasons. He had been thinking jewellery, but I was adamant, no jewel could compare to the Gilmore Girls.
He duly wrapped up the DVDs and handed them over and I started watching them the morning of our wedding and continued throughout our honeymoon.
I am THAT much of a fan.
The story of the fast talking, feisty single Mom Lorelai and her equally fast talking brainy daughter Rory and their life in picture perfect Stars Hollow circa 2000 hooked me right from the start.
I wanted to be Lorelai, I wanted to live in Stars Hollow, I wanted to eat all my meals in Luke’s Diner, it was true love and the only fly in the ointment was that the series was over and there were no more new episodes to devour.
Until this year, when Netflix announced that filming had begun on a new four-part special called A Year in the Life, something every Gilmore Girls fan had been waiting for since the moment the series ended nearly ten years ago.
And then today a teaser was released which genuinely made me jump up and down in my kitchen.
But, you know …
Ever since Netflix announced the new episodes, I’ve been rewatching the old ones and now that I’m watching them as a mother myself and now that I’m older and wiser I’ve noticed some …difficulties with Gilmore Girls. I know, it’s sacrilege, it really is, but I can’t help it. I’m aged now, I’m a Mammy, sometimes I actually enjoy a nice sit down and I do a great line in folding my arms and pursing my lips. It’s a trial, but I can’t help it.
So I present to you my Top Seven ‘That Wouldn’t Happen in My Day’ Guide to the Gilmore Girls:
1: The Food. So as we all know the Gilmores eat nothing but junk food and fast food. They eat every meal either in Luke’s Diner or from a takeaway place. They eschew all fruits and vegetables and survive on pop tarts and twinkies. Yet they remain enviously slim with perfect teeth. Which sends my Mammy radar into overdrive. If they REALLY ate like that and did no exercise chances are they’d be 500lb and would’t have a tooth in their heads. Here I am trying to get five portions of fruit and veg into The Beast every day and there Lorelai is munching on a Twizzler and sending her kid to school with a McDonald’s in her lunch box. IT DOESN’T WORK LIKE THAT LORELAI, OK? Social services would be at your door before you could say ‘braces’. And speaking of braces, do you know how much dental work from all that sugar costs Lorelai, do you? Because I don’t. I’m Irish, of course I don’t know how much US dental work costs, but I’d hazard a guess it’s a LOT. So, you know, cop on to yourself and all your sugar eating.
2. From the moment we’re introduced to Rory, we’re told that she’s wanted to go to Harvard since the age of three. NEEEEE NAAAWWWW – that’s my bullshit-o-meter going off right there. Since she was THREE? Rilly? Like, rilly? I have a three year old. Do you know what he wants to be when he grows up? A train. That’s right, he wants to be Thomas the Tank Engine. So much so that he now introduces himself to other kids in the playground as Thomas, even though that’s not his name. There’s no way no how that Rory Gilmore organically decided at the age of three that she was going to go to Harvard, it’s more likely Lorelai herself introduced the idea, the college equivalent of a Dance Mom. Hankering after Harvard at age three? Me hoop!
3. Speaking of Harvard, in the episode where Rory has her first day at Chilton, Lorelai rocks up in a pair of Daisy Dukes and a tiny t-shirt as all her other clothes are in the dry cleaners. I don’t even know where to begin with this. First of all, she claims she was going to get up early and go to the dry cleaners to pick up the clothes. But then says her alarm was set for 5.45am. Do dry cleaners in small east coast towns open at 5.45am? I’d wager not. So don’t blame the dry cleaners ok, Lorelai? Secondly, are we expected to believe that someone with a full time job, a grown adult, doesn’t have at least a clean (ish) pair of jeans and a plain shirt to put on her back? Or a pair of leggings and a dress even? In other episodes she seems to have plenty of pairs of jeans, plenty of shirts and sweaters. But on THIS day, buttock skimming shorts is the best she can come up with? Come on now Lorelai, get a grip on yourself.
4. We never really find out exact details about Star’s Hollow but it has it’s own school and there are apartments to rent and shops and stuff so we can assume there are a couple of thousand people living there. Yet Lorelai is the only single parent in the town. Which is really strange, seeing as like 50 per cent of marriages in the US end in divorce so you’d think there’d be at least ONE other lone parent knocking around. (And Mrs Kim doesn’t count, cos there’s a Mr Kim somewhere he’s just never sighted) But no, Lorelai is it, the only one who gets any support and praise and adoring glances. Personally I think lone parents are superstars, so come on Stars Hollow throw a ticker tape parade for ALL the lone parents will ya?
5. And on the same subject, Stars Hollow, is Rory the ONLY young person in the town to have achieved anything? Are there not other youngsters there getting on in life? Nobody else went to college? Or left the town to get a job? How come there weren’t any parties for those kids, huh? How come THOSE kids didn’t get town-wide adulation and surprise bon voyage parties? Why is it ONLY Rory? And why does she have no friends her own age? Except for Lane, she only hangs out with 50 year olds. Maybe it’s because she gets all the glory and attention, maybe that’s why all the other Stars Hollow kids hate her, so she’s forced to befriend the town pensioners.
6. Nobody in Star’s Hollow does any housework, or indeed work of any kind. Well, I suppose apart from Luke who does seem to be in that diner from morning til night. And Kirk, who does every job, but who can blame him when the rest of them are lazy bastards. But apart from them, the rest of the townspeople seem to sit eating in their immaculate houses, or swan around the neighbourhood in the middle of the day, drinking coffee or gossiping in the street. Like, what does Babette do, for example? Lorelai is supposed to run an inn, allegedly coming down with paying customers yet routinely legs it to have lunch with Rory or I dunno, look pensively at the camera or whatever it is she does and nobody pulls her aside and says ‘Eh, sorry love, but your wages will be docked this week.’ Sooki spends an inordinate amount of time garnishing dishes but never seems to actually cook anything, Christopher is ‘in business’ but we’re never really sure what sort, while Miss Patty stands on the street all day smoking. Just because you smoke it out of a holder doesn’t mean it’s not going to give you cancer one day Miss Patty, ok?
7. Emily Gilmore is the undisputed star of this show and there should be a bridge named after her. Ok, so she’s obsessed with social status, she meddles and interferes she can be rude and brash and abrasive. But let’s be honest, sometimes Lorelai ain’t no walk in the park either. Emily only asks for one dinner a week with her family, is that really too much to ask? Is it THAT hard to simply eat your meal with out the smart comments, eh Lorelai? And would introducing your mother to the man you’re going to marry – who you were only dating for three months by the way, like what is up with THAT? – be the worst thing you could do? You expect Emily to forgive you after you call her Pol Pot in in a magazine interview, but you can’t go one course without the witty repartee, eh? Hmmmm. *folds arms, purses lips*
Still and all despite everything I’ve said above I’ll be counting down the days until the release of the new episodes on November 25. Who’s with me?!
WE took advantage of the break in the rain today and went on a jaunt to the Lavender Farm in Wexford to enjoy the sun.
Situated off the N11 just outside Gorey, it only costs €2 per car which is great value if you’ve a few kids or even a Granny to take with you.
There’s the beautiful field of lavender to stroll in, a gorgeous playground, a friendly goat, donkey and few ducks to chat to as well as a cafe/shop and beautiful woodland walks.
The Beast made a beeline for the playground and we had a hard time dragging him away. As well as the usual slides and swings there’s also a small obstacle course and a wooden tractor to climb on. (The sign says the playground is suitable from age two upwards, but personally I felt it was geared towards kids slightly older than that. Our three year old needed help with the ladder for the slide for example and there’s no baby swing, so it wouldn’t be great for very young visitors, but perfect for pre-schoolers up, in my opinion.)
There’s a motorised bull train that runs a few times a day (The Beast got on, but then decided at the last minute that he most certainly was NOT going to stay on) and you pay extra for that, but judging by the squeals of delight coming from the passengers, it’s totally worth it.
We had a stroll around the delicious smelling lavender field and then had our lunch in the cute cafe, which has a fairly extensive menu. My open sandwich was delicious, but Yer Man’s roll was just average, a bit dry and tasteless, though he was hungry so he ate it. The cakes and tarts on display looked fabulous and other diners seemed happy though, so one bad sandwich isn’t the end of the world and was probably just an oversight.
I picked up some lavender honey made right there on the farm as well as some pouches of dried lavender and a pot of fresh lavender to bring home as gifts which were all reasonably priced.
After our lunch we had intended to go on one of the woodland walks across the property (there are 2km, 4km and 6km walks on offer depending on how energetic you’re feeling) but we only got to have a quick stroll as far as the field of sheep before The Beast yanked us back to the playground where he spent another very happy hour whizzing down the slide and staring suspiciously at any other kid who dared to have a go.
Overall we spent a couple of very happy hours there, enjoying the sun and the peaceful atmosphere and we’ll definitely go back.
Other things to note: The farm is closed on Mondays; dogs are welcome but must be kept on a lead; the lavender field and cafe itself is wheelchair accessible but the woodland walks are not; there are baby changing facilities plus a toddler step and toilet seat available in the accessible toilet. There’s a whole lot more information on what’s on offer here.
I HAVE a few minutes spare to write this post as I’m waiting for the washing machine to finish.
We’re going on holidays this month you see and that means acres of washing.
Sometimes the preparations for a holiday can start to feel like more trouble than it’s worth, can’t it? Of course holidays are lovely and we’re so lucky to have the chance to get away but, particularly when there are kids involved, it’s a lot of work.
A fellow Mam pointed me in the direction of this great article on the Huffington Post which declared that once you have kids, particularly in the early years, holidays cease to be holidays and become ‘trips’. And if you’re a stay at home parent, a business trip. And I wholeheartedly agree.
You know the way when you work in a company that sends you off on business trips and people say that you’re so lucky to get to see the world and you smile and nod but the reality is that you mainly get to see the airport and the inside of a hotel conference room?
You get to spend several awkward hours with Keith from Accounts – or worse, your boss – you eat copious amounts of limp BLTs and chips because that’s all that’s on the menu and you spend most of the trip in a security line at Heathrow wishing, frankly, that you were dead.
Well, that’s kinda how a stay at home parent (well, THIS stay at home parent anyway) feels when they go on their family holiday.
You wash and iron and pack and tidy and clean and make sure you have everything that you need, only to set off to your destination and do EXACTLY THE SAME THINGS ALL OVER AGAIN when you get there.
Kids still need to eat on holidays, they still need their toys, they still need naps and nappy changes or to pee 67 times a day. They still cry and wail and get bored and puke and won’t sleep. The only difference is you’re in a hotel room with one tiny overheated bathroom, instead of being in your own home.
Or – as in our case – you go self catering which is BRILLIANT in a lot of ways as you’re not reliant on hotel menus so can be flexible with meal times and dishes, but can be drudgery in other ways as you do the same amount of cooking and washing up as you would at home. Only you’re expected to smile about it because you’re on holidays.
I don’t know if it’s JUST because I’m a moany oul bitch (ah, I am, it’s grand, I know you all hate me) but even the activities that we tend to do on our holidays aren’t filling me with joy mainly because I do a lot of them at home with The Beast all the time anyway.
Take for example, the playground. Near to where we’re going is a fabulous playground, in the grounds of a hotel, that has a kind of a pirate ship set up with a twirly whirly slide that The Beast is mad about. You have your lunch and then can run out to play in the pirate ship, which is great.
Yer Man is all excited about this, keeps clapping his hands and saying he can’t wait to play with The Beast out on the pirate ship and won’t it be great, to be in a playground at 2pm instead of stuck at work. And that’s true, of course.
But for me, I go to the playground twice a week at home. Seen one slide, seem ’em all.
Going to the playground IS my work. That’s what I do as a stay at home parent, I cook and I clean and I play and I go to the playground and I feed the ducks, that’s my job. Do you see?
I don’t know why it’s hitting me harder this year, or why the whole holiday thing seems more like a drudge, it’s not like I didn’t know what I was getting myself in for. I knew when we decided that I would be the one to stay at home that it would be a)an enormous privilege and b)a lot of hard work, but for some reason I’m having a harder time accepting it this year.
In truth, it’s an awful way to feel about something as nice as a break away, when there are plenty of people who would love any sort of holiday and when there’s so much bad news in the world, so I’m trying to change my mindset on it.
I’ve decided to accept and acknowledge that my feelings on this are valid, because they are. Holidays do change when you become a parent. And they change further, I think, when you’re a stay at home parent. You do lose some of the fun, some of the excitement, it’s less of a break than when you were 20 and going on a sun holiday with your mates. And it’s ok to feel sad or frustrated at that.
However, like anything at all, a holiday, no matter what sort of holiday, is what you make it.
Fellow blogger Bumbles of Rice told me that what she does in the run up to her family holiday is get her little people all excited about what they’re going to do on their holiday and then in turn, she gets pulled into their infectious excitement. For example she’ll remind them that on holiday it’s the law to eat ice-cream EVERY DAY prompting squeals of delight. So I’ve decided to take a leaf out of her book and do the same thing here.
We’re going to go to the beach at least four times a week. We’re not going to worry about bedtimes. We’re going to go to three places/do three activities that we have never done before. We’re going to bring our raincoats and welly boots and actively go out in the rain and jump in muddy puddles. We’re going to go to the shops and treat ourselves to something new. We’re going to cuddle under a blanket and watch family movies for an afternoon and then say sod dinner and order a pizza.
Mainly, I think, we’re going to switch off and give our poor tired brains a bit of a rest.
And eat ice-cream. Every day. Fuck it, we’re on holidays.
ABOUT five hundred years ago I started a ‘local restaurant reviews’ section on the blog, wrote two reviews and then promptly forgot about it.
I’m dedicated like that.
Anyway, it was Yer Man’s birthday this weekend and I brought him out to dinner so I thought I’d blow the dust off the reviews section here and include some details on our night.
Being the seasoned travellers that we are, we went all the way to the Liffey Valley Shopping Centre (about ten minutes from our house) to see a film and afterwards decided to drop into Prezzo right beside the cinema, which opened a couple of months ago.
Prezzo is an Italian style bistro and boasts an extensive menu, featuring among others pizza, pasta, fish, chicken and meat dishes as well as antipasto platters and the Liffey Valley branch is the chain’s first outlet in Ireland.
We arrived around 6pm to find the restaurant about three quarters full, but we were seated promptly at a table for two and had a look through the menu, deciding this time to only have a main course as we had eaten our body weight in popcorn in at the flicks.
I was tempted by the pizza but in the end went for the pork belly with a Marsala sauce, while Yer Man had the Fusilli alla Rusticana which was a chicken pasta dish in a tomato sauce.
Service was friendly and efficient – it took about 20/25 minutes for our food to arrive but personally I don’t mind that as it shows the food is being cooked fresh and also we didn’t have starters so the wait seemed longer.
My pork belly was soft and tender and melting, though the skin could have been a bit crisper. The Marsala sauce was subtly and nicely flavoured, if a little thin and the accompanying veggies of green beans,mushrooms and broccoli were crisp and fresh. I had a tasty side salad also which was a generous portion of mixed salad leaves with cherry tomatoes, peppers and red onion and I chose an oil and balsamic dressing.
Yer Man’s pasta was enormous, a truly huge portion, nicely cooked with a light, fresh tomato flavour that was zingy and satisfying.
We were only there for an hour, so this is only a first impressions review but overall we were impressed. It was a lovely meal and we’ll be back to sample other dishes and we’ll bring friends too. More info including menus are here.
Our two main courses, plus two soft drinks came to €38. Prezzo is a mid-priced restaurant, starters are expensive enough varying between €7 to €9 while pizza/pasta dishes are around €12-€15 and meat courses average about €18. It’s not quite cheap and cheerful, but it’s not overpriced either, considering the generous portions.
This seems to be a family friendly restaurant – we counted about six tables with children on our visit – and there was plenty of space as well as several high chairs available. There’s a nice buzzy, energetic atmosphere about the place.
The dining room itself is bright and beautifully decorated and there’s loads of space between the tables. I abhor going to restaurants that squeeze you in like sardines in a tin so it was nice to be able to have a conversation without feeling like the next table was listening in.
The main feature in the dining room is the kitchen area with open pizza oven in the centre of the room – it’s a great visual but it does make the room really warm and when we were there the air conditioning didn’t seem to be switched on, so dress lightly!
There’s an outside seating area looking out on the newly refurbished plaza outside the cinema which would be lovely for a summer’s evening meal, so if it’s a nice day, see if you can nab one of those tables.
For food quality, menu selection and ambience Prezzo gets a solid 4/5. Next time we go, we’ll order all three courses and I fully expect that rating to rise to a 5/5.
For value for money I give a decent 3.5/5.
I HAVE a confession to make.
I don’t like coconut. There, I said it.
There’s been a bit of a coconut revival going on over the past few years (well, so it appeared to me) with people frying their food in coconut oil, drinking coconut water, cooking with coconut milk and I’ve eschewed all of it, so great is my hatred for coconut.
I think it dates back to when I was a kid and they used to put a Bounty bar in the Christmas selection box – I always hated them, so much so that I used to just give them to my siblings, rather than even swapping them for something else. I couldn’t bear to even have the bar in my hand.
Gritty, bitty, overly sweet Styrofoam, that’s what it tasted like to me and I vowed never ever to have anything to do with it. and for the past 30 years I’ve survived very well doing just that.
Fast forward to yesterday when I was clicking around the Internet Googling ‘chocolate’ (shut your face, you do it too) and came across this recipe for three ingredient chocolate mousse. Containing coconut milk. Ruh-roh!
The pictures looked absolutely delicious, the author described the mousse in mouth-watering detail and I just kept imagining sinking my spoon into a glass of thick creamy chocolatey goodness.
I could. not. stop. thinking. about it so I eventually caved and went to the supermarket and bought the ingredients and decided to make the damn mousse, coconut be damned. I was sure it’d be manky, but I threw caution to the winds and got out my mixing bowl.
The original recipe includes extra dark chocolate shavings but I decided to just keep it plain for the first go and I also made a smaller amount too, just in case I didn’t like it. The original author has all of the nutritional info on calories, carbs etc plus some truly amazing photographs so do check that out, you’ll be licking the screen So here’s how I got on:
What you’ll need:
(To make two portions)
One 400ml can of full fat coconut milk. I used Amoy.
One heaped tablespoon of icing sugar. (You can also use a sweetener if you prefer, I just can’t get on with sweeteners so went for the full sugar)
One tablespoon of unsweetened plain cocoa powder. I used Bourneville.
Sprinkle of salt (optional)
What you have to do:
The day before you want to eat the dessert, put the can of coconut milk into the fridge and leave it overnight.
The next day then, don’t shake the can, just open it and scoop out the solidified coconut cream from the top and discard the water at the bottom.
Whisk the coconut cream with the icing sugar until it’s nice and creamy.
Add in the cocoa powder and the salt (if you’ve decided to use it) and then whisk it again for another minute to bring it all together.
Spoon it into a bowl, a glass, whatever you want yourself and then either eat plain or decorate it with whatever you want. I used some strawberries and a teeny dollop of whipped cream. You could use raspberries, chocolate shavings, banana, crumbled biscuit, really whatever you want yourself.
It’s pretty much ready to eat there and then but if you prefer stick it in the fridge for a while to firm up a bit more and enjoy!
So, with my coconut aversion, what does it taste like?
Like Heaven on a spoon.
Like an angel has landed on your tongue and sprinkled angel dust on your tastebuds.
Like the best sex of your life.
It has a faint aftertaste of coconut but it’s really very slight and it actually adds to the sweetness. It’s not at all gritty and didn’t remind me of Bounty bars at all, I think I might be cured!
So there you have it! Three ingredient chocolate mousse – quick, easy, delicious. Give it a try, you won’t regret it.
I SAW a post on social media recently about someone doing up their CV for a job interview and it got me thinking.
It’s been a long time since I applied for a job or had an interview and I think since I’ve become a mother my skill set has changed.
It used to be all typing and office skills and teaching voluntary adult literacy classes – now it’s getting vomit out of the carpet and ‘Mom hacks’ for entertaining a toddler on a rainy day.
Mom hack number one, stop calling them fucking hacks you gobshites, they’re TIPS. Hacks, me hoop.
I think the number one skill I’ve picked up over the past three years is hostage negotiation.
Being a stay at home parent to a toddler is a bit like being in a hostage situation. With you as the hostage.
You have to ask permission to go to the bathroom and IF it’s granted it’s always conditional – to whit, you may never wee alone and you have to wee fast. I SAID FAST.
You have to prepare meals for a belligerent dictator who may deign to eat it or who equally may refuse to even taste it because you cut it into squares instead of triangles. Even though he said squares. But he can’t be expected to know that you’d follow through on his instructions, he’s under a lot of pressure right now. Jeez!
Leaving the place of capture – or ‘the home’ as some hostages refer to it – takes intense negotiations. You have to give a choice between this jacket or this jacket, these shoes or these shoes. Bribery may even be involved as you desperately beg for your freedom.
Earlier this week I was involved in a seriously delicate piece of negotiation about going out to play in the garden – I was almost feverish with the cabin fever after several days of rain, but The Beast was perfectly fine in his playroom thank you very much and he decided we weren’t going anywhere.
Eventually I had to agree to putting up two toy tents on the windiest day of the year in order to secure my freedom resulting in at least one neighbourhood child being brained by a flying wigwam. That’s a sentence I never thought I’d have to type.
Paradoxically after such a rigmarole to get out of the house, even further negotiations are often required to get back into the house.
Look around any playground and you’ll see dozens of half-washed, hollow eyed, wrecked looking parents desperately pleading with their captors to just get. in. the. fucking. buggy.
‘If you get in the buggy I’ll let you watch ten minutes of Paw Patrol when we get home!’ they’ll wheedle in a high pitched voice, terrified.
‘It’s time to go now! Hold my hand now and you can have these chocolate buttons,’ they’ll beg, eyes darting around, hoping someone, anyone, is about to jump out of the bushes to rescue them.
Bedtime is another flashpoint – no matter how much notice they get there’s always last ditch negotiations about the timing.
Just five more minutes. Just one more drink. Just 873 more stories. No, not THOSE stories. THOSE ones. Read them slower. NOT THAT SLOW.
Beware, if you do bedtime wrong, you’ll wake up at 2am to find them looming over you intoning ‘it puts the lotion on its skin or else it gets the hose again’.
Still, at least hostage negotiation is a skill for the old CV, right? If I ever get five fucking minutes to myself to apply for a job in the future, it’s SOMETHING to put on there, right? I mean at the moment there could be work for me over in the EU with the whole Brexit thing (See how I stay current? See?) I’m sure I could sort them all out. I negotiated The Great ‘Six Chocolate Buns in Six Minutes Is Quite Enough’ Showdown 2016 with aplomb so I did so I’m sure negotiating the fifth biggest economy’s exit from the European Union would be a doddle.
My other skills include ‘Secret Cheese Eating’ ‘Watching Keeping Up With The Kardashians Out Of The Corner Of One Eye While Doing Arts And Crafts At The Same Time’ ‘Faking Knowing The Names Of All The Monster Machines’ and my speciality ‘Pretending To Be Awake While Actually Being In A Coma’.
And I got an A in Home Economics in my Junior Cert. (Actually I didn’t, I got a B, but Lying Through My Teeth is another of my special skills.)
Hey, it’s a competitive market out there, may the best hostage win.
WHEN I was a kid, there was a good portion of my childhood where I didn’t get much of a weekend.
I worked alongside my Dad for most of Saturday (in a job too crashingly boring to even detail here) and had a busy Sunday with choir practice which was about ten miles from our house and required lots of buses back and forward. Throw in homework and the days kinda ran into one another.
There wasn’t much I could do about it all, it was just the way life was, so I went with it. As I got older then and went to college I worked part time in a supermarket to pay my way so worked every Thursday, Friday, Saturday and sometimes Sundays so again weekends were pretty much like any other day.
It was only when I got my first real job that only required occasional weekend work that I finally realised what people were on about when they said ‘Thank God it’s Friday’.
Fridays in my office were bliss. BLISS! There’d work to be done, of course, but it tapered off so that from about 3.30pm you’d be getting down to the really important stuff – emailing pictures of cats to your best friend.
There’d be every chance your boss would let you off early, so you could skip off before the bus got really full, with the whole weekend stretched before you like an endless glittering carpet of possibility.
Or if he came upon you with your feet on the desk eating an ice-cream at half four, instead of saying ‘Get back to work you lazy pup’, he’d say ‘What’s that? A Feast is it? Gowan, givus a bit.’ And he’d go back to his own desk for another round of Solitaire, one eye on the clock.
Really, nothing could beat that Friday feeling, it felt almost tangible and it was like a drug that I craved week after week.
It went on like that for a good 12 years but then like all good things, it came to an end. I became a parent. And literally overnight ‘Thank God it’s Friday’ transformed into ‘What day is it? Who am I?’
Babies don’t know the days of the week, you see. They’re surprisingly inept at reading the calendar and any attempt to convince them that Friday is actually a special day is met with derision and extra smelly nappies. Just out of spite.
The first few months of parenthood, I didn’t really notice it. Every hour of the day, let alone days of the week, blended into one big mess of nappies and feedings and colic.
I remember being on the phone to a bloke helping me sort out my maternity benefit and he asked me my name and I literally couldn’t remember. I was so tired that I paused for so long before answering him that he actually said ‘It’s ok, we’ll come back to that.’
So for a while, the lack of that Friday feeling didn’t bother me. But then as The Beast got older and things settled down into a bit of a routine, I started to notice what day of the week it was again and get excited about Fridays.
I’d sit in the sitting room watching the clock inch towards 4pm, head swivelling between the baby and the ticking hands waiting for him to stop grizzling and announce ‘Go on, you can go early, see you Monday!’
But he didn’t. He kept moaning out of him and slowly, achingly slowly, I realised that this was it. This was Fridays from now on, the same as any other day.
Of course weekends are still lovely, Yer Man has every Saturday off which is luckier than a lot of families and we make an effort at least two Saturdays a month to do something as a family, go somewhere fun, which gives us something to look forward to.
But that Friday feeling – that feeling of sheer abandonment, of leaving your work behind for the weekend – is gone. And I’m not sure that I’ll ever get it back.
I think I’ll have to live vicariously through The Beast. He’ll be starting primary school in a couple of years and I can’t wait for him to run out of the school gates chattering about being let off homework and getting a sweet from the Teacher.
With the weekend stretching before him like an endless glittering carpet of possibility.