Wednesday, 13 January 2010

Tagged Again! The Happiness Meme

Baking Mad Mama asked all us Mums at Twitter (Oh and the Dads too, they seem to be doing rather well too lately bless em) if we'd been tagged in the newest Meme on the block. The task?

To list the ten things that make us "happy".

Hmm, so its taken me quite some time to reply, and to be honest it had me really scratching the old chin. I asked Ed the Elder, and his reply was none too helpful- "You? 10? Tee hee, ten things that make you moan would've been better"...

So after smacking him round the chops (definitely made me happy that one), here is my hard thought list.

1) Getting up with the kids (for the first five minutes).

I love going into either of their rooms when they've just woken up and are still all sleepy and warm. Quite a few mornings this last few weeks, I've plonked them both in my bed while the heating warms up. They do daft stuff together. Mini is on a one sister mission to educate Ed the Littler in the parts of his face. She points to his eyes, ears, cheeks and mouth. This he finds hilarious, as it tickles him. Meanwhile I get to cuddle both of them, snatch a couple more minutes in bed, and watch before the pandemonium starts once again.

2) Mini singing

My daughter seems to think the whole world is there to watch her sing and dance, and grabs any opportunity to show off her repertoire. The Nephew was playing us his latest mix at the weekend, and she couldn't wait to jump in the studio and show him her funky moves. There's no song she doesn't appear to have a version of, and has even started making up her own.

3) One small step....

Edward The Littler has started furtive attempts at walking. He can make about 6 steps before he literally hurls himself at whatevers closest. Its not so much the steps, it the looks that cross his face as he does it. First you have fear, then shock, then excitement, then he falls in a heap laughing. I do believe that he has one of the most expressive faces on a toddler I've ever seen. Its a joy to watch.

4) Ed the Elders Tales of Misspent Youth

I love these- he should make them into a book. I think my childhood and teen years, bar one between 17 and 18, were pretty dull, but it would seem Ed got up to enough shenanigans for me and at least another couple of tame people. I love hearing these over and over- and get his brother involved and they become even more colourful. The majority are set off by a song, or a clip on You Tube.  I especially love his "Growing up with Mum" ones, as even though I was never lucky enough to meet the one person who I think has had the biggest effect on his life, I feel like I've been let into a secret society of snapshots of her- to watch his face light up has on occasion brought me to the brink of tears. Love them.

5) Music

Music is a biggie. Everything I have done in the last ten years has been set to an almost film like soundtrack. Before the kids, Ed and I would sit in the back room of our flat in Gillingham, and Ed would play from his vast selection of records. The nights we would sit, with beer or wine, and talk and listen to music are some of my most treasured pre-child memories. There were also the times when a small gathering would, well appear at the flat, especially in the summer, a barbecue would be lit, and all of us would have a laugh until silly times of the morning- hence the security light Ed put up outside in the yard that would go off after ten minutes and a silly walk across the garden would set it off gain. They were nights when I would look around and feel like even though I didn't have a family I could call on in times of stress, this band of mad people in all ages, clothing styles and interests were a kind of rag tag family instead.

6) Pictures

Which leads me nicely onto photos. I loved the favorite photo meme, but it was ridiculously hard to chose! I love my pictures, and still have a selection from as far back as primary school. I have for many years written dates, names and places too on the backs, and I love to sit with the tons of albums I have and go through them. I think my photos would be he thing I'd save after the kids in an emergency.

7) Summertime

Even thinking of the summer cheers me up! I love walking on the moor we have at the end of our road- it was a big reason why we moved back down to the area of Maidenhead we live in now, and lived in when we first moved up here too. One time, when I was pregnant with Ed the Littler, we decided to take a stroll from Maidenhead to Cookham. It said it was two mile walk, so with buggy and child packed in, off we went. 2 hours later, and many a fence and farmland crossed (having to carry the buggy at times), we arrived in Cookham. And nearly everything was shut! We found refuge in a tiny pub, with a Landlord who  think may not have had customers for about a year, as all the way through lunch he chatter away. Its so tiny the village that when we asked about a cashpoint, the woman had no idea what we were on about. At the time, we had all had enough of the heat, the walk, and the tiredness, but now we laugh.

8) Writing

Pretty obvious one I suppose, but I would be a liar if I said writing and hearing positive feedback from it didn't make me smile! The whole "internet network" I've joined up to has made me laugh my socks off at times- like Twitter during X Factor, or New Years eve, and the comments at harder times some of you have posted here. The messages of love to Edward on his first birthday (which can be seen here)  when I told you all about his struggle in the early months of his life reduced me to tears, and I'll soon be printing out all the blogs and comments to make a scrap book for the kids when they're older. Yes, there have been recent downs too, but even then the support I received again was shocking. Thank you x

9) Being a girly

I missed out on this totally as a child. I was about as Tom boy as they come, most of my friends were boys, I liked cars not barbies, and the thought of wearing pink brought me out in a rash. The only time I made any attempt to be girly was when I was dancing, and even then as soon as the music stopped that was it, make up and dress off, jeans and trainers back on.

But now? Well, I love to shop. I love high heels, I love having my hair done. I'm not sure if its being the mother to a girl who loves to dress up and nick my lipstick at 2, or just that it helps me to de-stress but yeah, I love it now. I  can't wait until Mini gets really into Barbie, so I can join in!

It started I guess when I was suffering from incredibly bad depression after Edward was born and came home. The responsibilty on mine and Ed's shoulders, and the worry too, was too much to take at times, and I'd "nest" into a ball under the duvet in the hope that if I stayed there long enough it'd work itself out. But it never works like that. Ed encouraged me to go out, have my hair done, go clothes shopping, anything to take me out the situation. At the time, I was so mixed up I thought he was trying to get rid of me, but now I see he was struggling too, but not just with Edwards worries, but with a girlfriend who was disintegrating before his eyes. He says now that he just didn't know how to help me, that at times it felt like he had not two but three children to care for, but he couldn't walk out on me, as he felt a sense of responsiblity towards me.

From that, learning to take more care of myself, to not feel bad for spending money on jeans, or tops, or shoes, or to go out and have a laugh with his sisters, although started as a cure, has stuck.  I'm losing, slowly, that guilt I get when I spend money on myself a instead of food!
 If you ask Ed about the very early days of us living together, he will say his most vivid memory is when we would go shopping, and I'd ask his permission to throw something in the trolley if it wasn't something he would eat. It used to drive him mad! Now though, in it goes without a second thought!

10) Chase me, chase me....

Edward and Mini love nothing more at the moment than the mad chase round the carpet sessions we have. I will chase them making roaring noises, then they will chase me. Mini will knock me to the ground (Or so she thinks!) and will then jump all over me, whilst Eward lies next to me laughing, then hangs over my face dribbling with delight. It can last for ages, or five minutes, but it usually ends in all 3 of us panting with exertion, lying in a row on the carpet, giggling, and Ed the Elder coming to see what all the noise is about. Love that.

So, there we go....
Now who wants a turn? Comment below x

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