Mumaleary's Blog

Cheaper than therapy

I used to be indecisive…an Oxo Tot Review

I never knew how much I didn’t know about myself until I became a mum…today’s news is…I have become a ditherer. I am so afraid of making a wrong decision and inadvertently committing my children to a life dressed a princesses and refusing to climb trees that, when a totally simple email popped into my inbox I was floored…

Here’s what happened… The lovely people at Oxo Tot have launched some new products and wanted family Leary to give them a whirl, write a review and host a give away- so far so good. They wanted to send us a Twist Top Water Bottle and a Flippy Snack Cup. Brilliant. Here comes the tricky bit…What colour would we like them in…Pink, Green or Blue…I was floored. WHAT HAVE I BECOME???

Looking at the selection I could see that, whilst they were all lovely, if the big little was going to choose herself she would go for the pink, no question. My brain went into over drive…Oh my word, has society conditioned her already?? By choosing pink am I reinforcing the gender stereotypes and forcing her into a world where she won’t feel able to achieve as much as her male peers??

check out the range!

check out the range!

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There’s a circus in the town…no really, there is!

After a title like that, you might be expecting me to regale you with a tale of woe about how, en route to a wedding on Saturday we managed 30 miles in around 90 minutes thanks to my our utter ineptitude to do anything in a normal, grown up fashion. I’ll level with you, I screwed up the roof box and, unable to hear ourselves over the constant rattling we had to divert to B&Q to sort it. Basically, the soundtrack to our life should, at least on occasion, be the Benny Hill theme tune!

Happily, we arrived safe and well and, we’ve since had a good laugh about it…memories are made of this and all that!

But, this isn’t a post about me being a prize idiot; it’s a post about us going to an ACTUAL CIRCUS!! Whoop whoop!

I have only been to a circus once before and, thanks to my extensive knowledge on the mistreatment of Dumbo’s mother until her sons amazing talents were revealed, I haven’t really wanted to visit a place that could be mistreating animals when they’re out of the public eye.

Billy Smart’s Circus is a different kettle of fish entirely though…infact, it’s not even a kettle of fish…they don’t have any animals at all- yey. Problem solved.billysmartscircus

Instead, when we head to New Brighton on Sunday we can expect to be wowed by a band of international artistes who specialize in juggling, tightrope walking and other stunts… There is the circus stalwart of clowns plus a band and crazy motorbike stunts…it sounds absolutely amazing. 
We are going to see ‘Britain’s Most Famous Circus’ on the final day of the circus’  stay in New Brighton but, if you miss it there, check out the rest of the dates and locations here.  

I think I am most excited about seeing the men with no tops X-treme Brothers and, on this occasion I’ll over look the spelling thing! What the hell are they doing? I pat myself on the back when I can stand on one foot in hot yoga!

The X-TREME BROTHERS, a trio of handsome and talented acrobats from Romania utilise immense strength and power to achieve amazing feats of balance.

The X-TREME BROTHERS, a trio of handsome and talented acrobats from Romania utilise immense strength and power to achieve amazing feats of balance.

or maybe the Flying Aces.

The FLYING ACES, five exciting youngsters on the flying trapeze swing and somersault their way through the air.

The FLYING ACES, five exciting youngsters on the flying trapeze swing and somersault their way through the air.

Oh no, definitely the foot juggling

GERMAINE DELBOSQ from France shows off her foot-juggling skills with a modern slant on the back of a motorbike!

GERMAINE DELBOSQ from France shows off her foot-juggling skills with a modern slant on the back of a motorbike!

Oh, Forget it. I’m excited about the whole thing. Obviously though it’s all about the girls!!

Awkward; how did this pic of me get in here!

Awkward; how did this pic of me get in here!


Having checked out the video’s on line my expectations are high.

 

I have asked whether the girls are too young (at 2 1/2 and 15 months) but have been assured that it is totally family friendly so, we’re joining the circus- armed with ear defenders-and I’ll let you know how it goes…that’s the beauty of blogging…I can do it on the road. I think our specialist skill will be food throwing and mess making!

Can’t wait!

Muma.

XxxX

For further information including performance times and prices and to purchase tickets please visit www.billysmarts.com or phone the ticket & information line on 0113 260 2444

 

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It’s time for a change…

Good Morning my dears! And what a lovely morning. A long weekend stretching out in front of us with the promise of lie-ins, papers, boozy long lunches….oh wait. We have children now! It’s different!
So, It will basically be a 4 day marathon of car journeys and traffic jams followed by sugar highs and crashing lows, another cold dinner as you supervise the eating of toddlers (I don’t mean actually eating toddlers, I mean ensuring that the contents of their plate don’t end up on the floor of Carluccios as you try to hold a normal conversation with friends-we’ve all been there no?!) and returning home more knackered than you were when you started. No bother, memories are made of this…

Anywho, this weekend has a brilliant twist. Me and the hubster are going to a wedding. Sans kids.
We are heading off to Brecon to witness the coming together in matrimony of two dear friends, Sarah and Dan. I used to work with both of them and Sarah lived with us for six months which was wine fuelled and lovely!
We will know only the bride and groom at the wedding so, I was thinking about creating a whole new identity for us.

I’m not talking Walter White when things went bad, I’m talking more creating the identity you sometimes wished you had. You know, the sort where you can wear white jeans knowing that, if they get dirty that will be solely down to you spilling a chilled glass of Rose down them as opposed to having a mid-thigh tide mark of general grubbiness thanks to a toddler pulling at you, wiping their nose on you and wailing

Muuuuuuuuuuma, MUMMMMMMMMMAA are you listening to me?

Mid every conversation!
I’m talking a handbag which will not result in a permanent stoop thanks to the need to include everything but the kitchen sink just in case.
I’m thinking sky high heels even on gravel and…wait for it….a Sunday morning lie in with chocolate for brekkie and a hot cup of tea.
Boom.
That’s what I’m talking about people.

Happy Easter!

Muma.
XxxX

NB- I am uploading this entry late…we have now endured said car journey and a hideous night where both girls woke and cried and fretted and made me want to shoot myself in the face.
Happily we have now arrived at the B&B for the wedding (I will not even mention the roof box calamity that saw us in B&Q Reading rather than on the M4, it is best forgotten).
And now, the piece de resistance…here’s our bed…

20140419-124312.jpg
There best be wine at this wedding!!!

Muma.

XxxX

Brilliant blog posts on HonestMum.com

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3 Reasons to love John Lewis!

There are several reasons I love John Lewis;

1) Their brilliant Christmas Adverts, I’m thinking this one in particular. (I love the song…not sure what Morrisey thinks though!)


2) Their stunning carrot cake- it’s possible that I had a slice of this today (it is nearly Easter after all!) 

3) Their amazing customer service…

So, we all know I’m a crier. This isn’t news. However today, crying in the customer service department of John Lewis was a new low! 

Let me just try to explain myself shall I, before you all start thinking I’m a bonafide weirdo who needs to be committed. 

Ok, here goes. Last week the girls and I walked to the shops and, on our way home, with all our booty in the buggy we crossed the road. When, much like the chicken, we got to the other side, I tilted the buggy to push it up the curb. The front wheels folded under and the buggy collapsed leaving me struggling with the weight of two toddlers and a broken buggy whilst apples and oranges careered across the carriageway. Thankfully someone stopped to help. Oh wait, no they didn’t so I had to do a 180 and drag the buggy up the curb, retrieve our stuff whilst consoling two crying kids and continue our walk home just as the heavens opened; naturally. It was pretty bloody frightening. 
Clearly, I am now petrified of it happening again and so I have to make a massive scene every time I go up a curb by doing so in reverse. It’s not a good look. 

We bought the buggy, which at almost a grand for the whole travel system shenanigans is not to be sneezed at, from the high street giant, John Lewis and so, following a buggiless trip to the Aquarium today we headed over to Liverpool One to see what could be done. 

Their customer service team were nothing short of fantastic. I arrived and, as I replayed the whole sorry incident to the lady, who I think was called Jill, it hit me again how lucky we were that no one was hurt. I know this sounds dramatic but, on a busy main road with cars speeding past anything could have happened. As I did that whole half cry, half talk thing, rather than feign a phone call and palm me off to someone else, she brought me some water and offered drinks for the girls too. She and another member of the team, Lisa, immediately saw the issue and telephoned the buggy manufacturer straight away to ask for a replacement. No quibbles. 
Additionally, they swooped our chassis for their own demonstration one so I could feel safe and happy using the buggy whilst waiting for a new one of my own to be delivered. 
They chatted to the girls and kept them occupied whilst I searched for the email receipt and gave all the necessary details and their consideration and level of service was absolutely fantastic and, in these times of online shopping, faceless telephone help lines and a general loss of the sense of loyalty and customer care, I really thought it was worth a mention. Oh, and they gave me a voucher for the afore mentioned carrot cake. Very kind. 

Thanks John Lewis, there’s a reason your one of my absolute high street musts. Long may it last. 

Have you got an absolute favourite shop or are you an internet all the way kind of guy/gal?

I will look forward to hearing what the buggy manufacturer has to say…I’ll keep you posted. 

Muma. 

XxxX 

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It’s Marathon Day- Go Mo!

Sport- what does it mean to you? Are you a fanatic, a couch potato or somewhere in between?

I definitely wouldn’t call myself a fanatic but there are certain things in the sporting calendar that simply ca not be missed;

  • The Grand National
  • Sports Personality of the Year and
  • The London Marathon.

Today is the 34th London Marathon and I along with millions of others will very likely be weeping into my weetabix as we watch the thousands of runners raising millions of pounds for some amazing causes. Obviously there’s the elites and this year I’ll be rooting for Mo- fingers crossed all that quern and PMA will have paid off…

London Marathon 2011

But, I think for most of us, the bigger story is about the ‘normal people’, the ‘fun’ runners!!!

I have run that course 3 times. It is an absolutely mind-blowing experience. So emotional and heartwarming to see all those that have slogged and trained and sweated and toiled through the winter to stand nervously on the start line and then, hours later, hang a medal around their neck and hobble back to the tube as a hero. 20130819-221806.jpg

One of the charities I am supporting this year is Grief Encounter. It supports children who have lost their parents When a child’s parent or significant loved one dies, their lives change forever. See my totes emosh post here if you need convincing. As well as the sadness they feel, they are often left confused and full of fear and anxiety. Grief Encounter helps families address difficult issues such as death and we help make sense of the hurt and confusion. Above all, we aim to help them find ways out of the abyss of grief.

A brilliant blogger that I follow at Life as a Widower is running for them so, if you’ve got £2 to spare, send it their way hey?

Massive Good Luck to everyone running today, especially my friend Kate. You will all do brilliantly.

LIFE OF A WIDOWER

Tissues at the ready, they’re under starters orders…I’m so going to be back there next year- do you fancy it?

Have a Happy Day Guys,

Love

Muma.

XxxX

 

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Happy Birthday to me!

 

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO ME.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO ME.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY MUMA LEARY.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO ME!! 

birthday

Yep, this week my blog is one year old! WOW- who knew I’d stick with this bad boy for a whole year hey? Feel free to drop by with a cake.

I started this blog as somewhere to offload my rants and ramblings because Mr L was working away and I was home alone most nights with nothing to do! Over the course of the year I have posted 125 posts, I have had over 45,000 unique views, been on a local radio show (if you want to listen, its on my Facebook page!) and had some really lovely feedback and comments. Thank you.
So much has changed since I started and I now find myself having to crowbar in my blogging between work, babygroups, two gorgeous girls, real life and…a husband that now works a bus journey away!!

That’s the real difference- I now have someone to talk to each evening and that means that the blog can sometimes feel a little neglected. I often feel it scratching at my brain like a puppy that’s been left out in the garden and wants to come in for some attention. Beagle_puppy_portrait

It is bloody impossible this blogging malark- I see so many others with amazing photography, super slick videos and I wonder why the hell I bother but, pondering on it I realise that blogging is a little bit like life- of course it is, I am recording my family life so, it’s no surprise that mine is a little less slick, a little less polished and a little more real than some of the others I’ve happened upon because this is mine.

It is my space to be me. To off load what’s important to me, to ramble about what makes my family so super special and so, I’m going to do my best over the coming year not to compare myself to the other blogs out there. Not to feel like the scruffy, dowdy blog with nothing interesting to say and I’m going to write just for us so, when I am old and grey I can reread these posts and reminisce about how seriously, seriously lucky I was to be someone as close to having it all as anyone ever is.

Thank you so much for reading and sharing with me so far- Here’s to the next year!

Lots of Love,

Muma.

XxxX

Oh, and if by any chance you fancy helping me to celebrate my first blogiversary, you could nominate me for a BiB award, I know what I just said about blogging for me and all that but who doesn’t want an award?!

You’ll need the following:
https://mummetamorphosis.wordpress.com
@mumaleary

 

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The Nursery Run…Ordinary Moments

Every so often there is a day, or a few moments within a day, that remind you why you don’t really mind the trudge through the normal, the boring and the seriously stressful. It isn’t a big thing, just something routine, something even that is sometimes a chore. It is what we call an ordinary moment and I have had that with my babies today. The Ordinary Moments

For some reason this morning the stars aligned and everything went like clockwork. No, more than that; everything was sparkly, sugar coated and gorgeous and, rather than let this moment slip away into the ether I wanted to remind myself and my babies why they make my world complete.

Today my darlings I woke before you and had time to wash and dress and everything before padding into your room to get you both up and ready for the day. You were awake already and chattering to each other- I wish I could bottle this delicious gibberish, it melts my heart to see you so engaged with each other.

Today, no one cried, no one fell of the changing table and everyone liked the clothes I had chosen. We sang songs together as I combed your hair and put on your shoes and put you in the buggy for the trek to nursery.

Such an amatuer, scuse the finger!

Such an amatuer, scuse the finger!

Today the sun was out, the wind was gentle and we could smell the cut grass and the flowers.

Today we counted cars and shared raisins, held hands and sneaked smiles before I got you out at nursery and you both happily kissed me before toddling off to play with your friends.

And when I picked you up it was more of the same. We retraced our steps, talked all about your day and wallowed in each others company with cuddles and sloppy kisses and cozy nug time. It has been simply perfect. So I wanted to tell you, again, I cherish you both. I love you so very much and  you make me and your daddy very, very proud.

Memories are made of this my darlings. Swwet Dreams,

Muma.

XxxX

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Boxsets, Britpop & looking Blurgh and #Lovethelittlethings

It’s Friday, It’s Friday, It’s Friday!! I hope that you’ve all had a hunky dory week and are licking your lips with anticipation for the weekend- What are your plans? We have a Pirate Party for the amazing Archie tomorrow and the small matter of the FA Cup semi final where Mr L will be rooting for The Gunners…fingers crossed they beat Wigan tomorrow. Either way, there will be cake and beer!

Now, you all know the score with this one, unless you’re a newbie (in which case Welcome!) This is my run down of the week in topic form thanks to the lovely linky from Morgana at But Why Mummy Why. Hold on to your hats, here goes…

Happy Friday image

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Radio Gaga!

What did you dream of being when you were little?
Did you have a dream job?
I did. I had loads;

  • Criminal Psychologist,
  • A List Hollywood actress
  • Nurse.

As it happens, aside from being ‘boatswain number 1’ in a school production of The Tempest, I have not managed to achieve any of these early ambitions, no matter today I have found a new dream job…I want to be a DJ!!  Read the rest of this entry »

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Adult Admin

Evening All.

I hope you’ve had a good weekend? Mine has been pretty standard fare, you know, the sort of adult admin that if you’d ever been warned about as a child you would have headed straight off to Never Land lest your free time accidentally got filled with tasks such as steam cleaning your kitchen floor when in your head you imagined nothing but shopping, champagne and acceptance speeches; ah reality! Don’t you just love it…

I’ll be honest. I am destined to live a life of bitter disappointment as I persistently and doggedly believe that everything is going to be amazing. I never, ever learn. Take the steam cleaner for example; everyone extols the virtues of them but no bastard tells you that you’re going to need those plastic shoe protector things you get in theatre or at new build when you’re using it to stop your feet from getting soaked. Very annoying.

It is extremely rare for people to give you the brutal truth about anything; when I was pregnant not one of my friends said to me- look out for the occasions when you’re bathing your child in the middle of the night to remove the clumps sick from their hair and, just when you think you’ve got it all, they poo in the bath for good measure!!

No one ever, ever seems to say that wedding night sex is more likely to be you, alone  in the bathroom jumping up and down like a kid on a pogo stick just to get yourself out of the ‘control underwear’ you had underneath your frock. Yup, wake up guys, it ain’t a pearl thong and nipple tassels and, by the time you’re all sorted the groom is out for the count.

All of these things are taboo!!

It seems to me that people (by which I mean me), are always thinking that perfection is just around the next bend. I’ve been searching for it since the beginnings of Britpop and that was 20 bloody years ago now. Radio 6 are doing a week of shows on it to make me feel even more ancient!

I thought I’d find it at yoga but no, my competitive nature means I would rather faint mid Warrior than give up before anyone else in the class- I’ve not quite got into the yogi mindset yet it seems and, when at a charity quiz on Friday my team mates thought I was joking when I gave nil points for the answer ‘The girl who kicked over the hornets nest’ That IS NOT the name of the book!! Oh, and PS- the quizmaster can’t just repeat the questions over and over…listen or loose out…god bless my kids, they haven’t got a prayer!!

But, I am beginning to see the merit in ‘Good Enough’. It massively takes the pressure off but it is a slippery slope. One day you’re asking yourself if it’s ok not to iron pillow cases (it is) and the next you’re asking yourself if just turning the duvet cover upside-down and giving it a blast of fabreeze is an acceptable level of hygiene (it’s not…apparently!) Is it ok for the kids to have strawberry laces for breakfast; will they count as one of their 5 a day?!

I guess it’s all about priorities isn’t it. I could be doing my cleaning and ironing now. I could be planning our meals and getting the breakfast stuff out for the morning. I could be repacking the changing bag and all that jazz but I’m not going to. It’s a Sunday night, it’s my 1st blogiversary so I’m going to head downstairs, grab a beer and watch Breaking Bad. Maybe I’ll resume my search for the perfection tomorrow…

Lots of love,

Muma.

XxxX

What’s that you say? You didn’t get me a Blogiversary gift?! Not to worry, you can just nominate me for one of these…Brilliance in Blogging Awards-oh, look, here’s the form– that’s handy! If you do fancy that, you’ll need to know the following stuff:

Blog URL: https://mummetamorphosis.wordpress.com/
Twitter Handle: @MumaLeary
Email: if you don’t know it, it doesn’t matter!

I reckon I fit best into the Fresh Voice, Family or Laugh category but you can nominate me wherever you wish, I ain’t picky!
NOMINATE ME BiB 2014 LAUGH

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