• Dr’s appointment a week later

    My eldest had been diagnosed with weak muscles in her digestive tract.
    This is allowing acid and bile to rise up in her throat.
    ‘Acid reflux’ pretty much all the time.
    While lying, sitting and standing.
    The prognosis?
    Probably another operation.

  • Games with the family

    During the Summer holiday’s, while the children are all off school and my eldest is living back at home, we’ve gotten into a habit of playing board games, outside on the back patio in the evening.
    My eldest’s boyfriend happily joins in.
    It’s actually a thrill for me just to get to play some of the board games the children have been getting for Birthday’s and Christmas for the last twenty years!
    Everyone’s favourite game though is ‘Munchkin’!

  • Eldest needs support

    My eldest was having more medical tests today but, as my wife was at work, I was looking after my youngest two..
    Normally, I’d have let my eldest’s fiancé look after her but she was very scared about the procedure.
    I organised to drop the children at their Nan’s around 10.30am and then took my eldest to the hospital.
    Her fiancé came to and I was glad when only one of us could accompany her in.
    I ‘volunteered’ to wait outside.
    She had a monitor in a tube inserted down her nose, through her throat and into her stomach.
    You could see it running down the back of her throat whenever she opened her mouth.
    About an hour later, she was allowed to eat, so I bought everyone a ‘Subway’ lunch.
    Then, the two of them took me to the flat they were hoping to rent in September.
    Although I couldn’t see the flat itself, it looked fine from the outside and the balcony overlooked a nice little park.
    It looked pretty good to me.
    Afterwards, I made sure she was safe before leaving her and her fiancé at around 3.45pm.
    I got back to eventually collect my youngest two at around 5pm.
    Luckily, my brother-in-law was there with his three children had been at their Nan’s for most of the day. The five of them had played together for most of the day an their Nan had even taken them to the park!
    I’d brought some cakes with me and so I let them stay a little longer while we ate and I had a cup of tea.
    I was grateful for my Mother-in-law helping, despite having five of her grandchildren to look after.

  • Sunday at my parents’

    I found myself with no plans or jobs to do so I headed off early to my parent’s house.
    I took the dog and my youngest two.
    After hugs and kisses, we all flopped around with my Mum producing a seemingly endless supply of sweets and treats for her grandchildren.
    Everyone seemed pretty happy lolling around the house, so I took the dog for a quick walk around the park before suggesting a trip to the cinema.
    ‘How to train your dragon 2’ was showing and my youngest two children were keen to see it. My Mum wanted to come but my Dad baulked at the prospect of a cartoon.
    My eldest and her boyfriend, on hearing our plan though, bussed it down to meet us.
    My Mum and I both drove, so there’d be room enough for everyone on the way home.
    My eldest and her fiancé got to the cinema before us and were having a weird conversation about the cheapest arrangement for the tickets, when we found them…
    ‘Family’, ‘student’, ‘child’, ‘OAP’…
    The best combination turned out to be: ‘One Pensioner, two students, two children and one regular adult please.
    After all the faffing about though, I must have only saved a quid or two.
    While I was buying the tickets though, my mum was upstairs spoiling her grand-children.
    Four Giant bags of popcorn, assorted sweets and buckets of cola.
    The movie was pretty good for a sequel and everyone enjoyed it.
    Then, after it had finished, we all went back to my parents’ house for a Chinese takeaway and acrobatics in the garden.
    We were a tired, full and happy group when we finally headed home.

  • Summer house still full

    I’ve made progress but I have to be brutal.
    Either: keep, give to charity, or throw away.

  • Pet tricks

    My eldest tricked my wife into allowing her brother and sister to get a Dagu each.
    Dagus look like a mixture between squirrels and large hamsters.
    ‘What are they like?’, my wife asked.
    ‘A bit like hamsters’, my eldest replied.
    After agreeing, my eldest asked my to take her brother and sister to buy them.
    I had to drive because they’d need a cage, some bedding and some food.
    When I saw them, I knew that my wife had been conned.
    They were pretty much the size of squirrels.
    Big for a rodent and with a life expectancy of up to ten years!
    Still, I wasn’t going to be the one who’d say no to my children after their Mum had said yes.
    The Dagus themselves were quite cheap but with the cage and extras, I ended up spending well over £100.
    Still the children were happy.
    Until their Mum saw what I was carrying in…

  • Mother-in-law’s birthday

    My eldest and I organised a meal for the whole of my wife’s family.
    My mother-in-law, my wife, my brother-in-law, his wife, my little girl, my eldest, her fiancé, my little boy, my brother-in-law’s two sons and daughter and me.
    Twelve of us!
    Despite it only being the local pizza express, it was still good fun and everyone was happy.
    Food enough for everyone and some wine for the grown-ups.
    Ultimately though, I was just pleased that everyone around the table were talking.

  • Cycling with my shirt off

    The weather’s gotten so hot that (despite my doughy middle) I pulled off my t-shirt as I cycled to work.
    Although not embarrassed, I was a bit worried about burning but luckily the city’s tall buildings gave me plenty of shade.
    I still got enough sun though to soften my T-shirt tan lines.

  • Pies to die for

    My eldest decided to cook pies for everyone.
    Well, not cook pies but rather help us cook pies for ourselves.
    Her plan went slightly awry due to the lateness of her offer and a lack of supplies.
    I walked down with her to the local supermarket to buy the pastry and chicken.
    The chickens all looked a bit dodgy though.
    ‘Let’s buy a good one’ I suggested.
    I pointed to the ‘organic’ ones rather than the anemic looking ‘economy’ ones.
    Trouble was that the only good one was pretty big.
    Bigger than our needs and twice as expensive as its cheaper rival.
    ‘Sod it!’ I thought and bought it anyway.
    We got home just before 6pm and got strait to cooking the chicken.
    I hadn’t realised that a two-and-a-half pound chicken takes nearly three hours to cook!
    Still, I let the little ones stay up late for a late feast.
    When the chicken was ready, my eldest made ‘gravy’ to bind the meat and vegetables together and laid out the pastry.
    Then we all ladled in the meat, vegetables and gravy (to the proportions we desired) and folded the pastry around it.
    Then back in the oven for twenty minutes…
    The pies were delicious and well worth the wait/work.
    True, we didn’t eat until after 10pm but, all in all, it was a genius idea and great fun for the whole family.

  • Cool operators

    While looking in the local toy shop, my youngest two ran up to me, with beaming faces.
    ‘Can we have a paddling pool?’
    ‘Sure’, I thought. ‘Why not?’.
    The weather had certainly been warm enough to warrant one.
    The two of them scurried off to get it, while I waited at the till.
    They came back with a box as big as one of them.
    ‘What the…?’ I managed to say before I accepted my fate.
    It wasn’t as expensive as I’d feared but still about three times what I had initially expected to pay when I’d acquiesced to their demand.
    Lugging the massive box home, I couldn’t begrudge their unconcealed happiness.


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