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Crazy Mummy Syndrome

I am so over cooking dinner. I have all but given up trying to think of something new to eat every single night. My kids aren’t fussy, well they are kids so they do gripe about some things, but generally they will eat what we cook – so that’s not the issue.

My issue is that I have to be ‘creative’ in the kitchen, and cook all these great new recipes that people are telling me about. It is one of the reasons I don’t invite friends over for dinner. I don’t want that kind of stress of cooking a nice (and somewhat edible) meal. I can’t do it half the time when I am just trying to plate something for my hubby & two kids.

In my work I am always thinking about how things work, what I need to do next, thinking outside of the box, and generally running my brain on the computer all day for my clients. So when it comes to thinking about creating some amazing dish at the end of the day… no thanks!

Recently, I have, lets say, ‘massaged’ my husband ego as he is definitely the better cook out of the two of us. See he actually cares. My hubby loves looking for a recipe he would like to try his hand at. He likes going grocery shopping for all the things he needs (that’s a whole other rant from me – don’t get me started!), add to that the fact that we have a newly purchased Thermomix, any busy families best friend, and it is quite easy to say my hubby is in heaven.

But boy the meals he has dished out in the last week, I have completely polished off. Licked the plate clean. Have actually finished my meal before anyone else. It has actually been such a change that when he had to go away overnight for work last week, I stayed strong with my stance against cooking and took the kids to… I can’t believe I’m going to say it… McDonalds. I must say that when he found out he laughed his head off.

So as Father’s day approached, I realised that I would have to take up the tools again and make some spectacular flop of a meal to end our lovely weekend on. We had spent the weekend with friends who live in Newcastle and were driving home at lunchtime on Sunday, when I said – ‘What are we going to do for dinner tonight?’

To which hubby replied, ‘I don’t know why?’

Me: ‘We have that Menulog voucher we could use and just get takeaway.’

Hubby: ‘Sounds great. I’m not cooking on Father’s Day.’

Yes!

I did my little happy dance.

View More: http://deathtothestockphoto.pass.us/brick-and-mortar

You may have seen or heard about Menulog in the past. Menulog is an online website where you can order food delivery from a range of local outlets that deliver specifically to your suburb. I must admit I had heard of it before, and seen the advertisement on tv, but wasn’t 100% sure how it all worked.

So it was time for some research.

When I went onto the website I was promoted to enter my postcode. So I did just that. Oyster Bay is a little out of the way for most people, but I was astounded to see the array of restaurants and cuisines that came up in the list. There was Italian, Chinese, Indian, Thai, and even a bottle shop! The boys will be happy with be able to order pizza & beer to be delivered… Think I might keep quiet on that one!

We went with Thai on the day, and needed to have it delivered early as our two little monsters were becoming as feral as Gremlins do after midnight. So hubby & I sat down out the back in the early afternoon, whilst we were watching the monsters go nuts, and had a look through our options.

It was really easy to place our order too. You can view the restaurant menu and order your choice of meals all whilst on the Menulog website. The restaurant doesn’t even need to be open for you to do this. You can actually pre-order your delivery and choose the time you would like the delivery to arrive.

Talk about catering for the pre-planners out there – and it is the most perfect thing for us busy mums! Not to mention the whole system is FREE to use. There are no hidden charges for using their site, and you receive a confirmation SMS to your phone to say the order has been received by the restaurant.

We then were able to sit back and enjoy the sunny afternoon without worrying about getting dinner ready.  Our food even arrived a few minutes early, and I was relieved at how easy the whole process was. No miscommunications on the phone, no dramas about what to cook. And the best bit – hubby was happy on Father’s Day.

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Now, thanks to Menulog, I have the amazing opportunity to giveaway two $50 Menulog vouchers to any two of my wonderful crazy mummies out there – so that you too can have a night off from cooking. Of course if you know someone who would benefit from this giveaway then feel free to share the love!

Entry is easy. Just click on the Rafflecopter App below and you will be redirected to the site where you follow the prompts to gain entries. Only 1 entry is necessary to enter the competition, though you can enjoy extra entries by choosing to follow The Crazy Mummy in all areas noted on the Rafflecopter App.

Good luck!

Screenshot 2014-09-15 08.19.41

 

Whilst The Crazy Mummy was provided with a family meal voucher to spend at a participating restaurant of our choice in exchange for this review, we wish to inform you that all opinions and content are our own.  Entry is open to residents of Australia only.  The winner will be notified via email and given 48 hours to respond.  If no response in this time, a new winner will be drawn.  Total prize pool is valued at 2 x $50 Menulog vouchers and is to be used with a local Menulog restaurant of the winner’s choosing (where valid) and cannot be redeemed for cash.  The winner’s details may be forwarded to Menulog for prize distribution.

A voucher code will be emailed to the winner as supplied by Menulog and will be valid for 1 month from the date of issue.  The voucher code will be valid for delivery only and payments via credit card.  The voucher is valid for one use only.  The Crazy Mummy is not liable or responsible in any way or form for prizes that are subsequently not delivered by a third party or arrive damaged or late.  Judge’s decision is final.

Welcome to our first Crazy Mummy Guest Post, written by a friend of mine – Charley.

We often chat about the crazy chaos that is our lives, and just the other day I asked Charley if she would like to write a post for my Crazy Mummy Blog.

Thankfully she said yes, instead of storming off right there and then, and below is her story about ‘Mess Stress’. As mother’s we all have it. That rush of stress, caused by the feeling you have to clean your house (as though it looks that way everyday) when guests are popping by.

Charley has three beautiful daughters aged 6, 4 and 7 months; and along with her husband, their dog, two ducks and several unwanted possum squatters, they reside in the suburban southern suburbs of Sydney.


I’ve finally figured it out.

I am actually a very tidy person, trapped inside the body of a messy one. I’m somewhere in the middle of the spectrum between chronic hoarder and OCD clean freak. Allow me to explain by transporting you back to my childhood years.

I shared a bedroom with my older sister, an invisible line invariably drawn down the middle of the room. On her side, the epitome of neat. A single bear tucked neatly under the doona, folded clothes and a clear desk. Mine a jumble of soft toys strewn across an unmade bed, unfinished craft projects, smelly hockey socks and a series of science experiments in the form of unopened half eaten lunchboxes. Needless to say, on more than one occasion my sister actually opened the window and threw my belongings into the garden in a rage. We got burgled once and the policeman thought they’d been after something particular in my bedroom….

Intermittently, my mum would reach her limits and tidy my room while I was at school (OMG I did this in my daughters room today). I loved coming home to neat rows of toys on my bed and clean sheets – an insight into a future life where such simple things would provide great pleasure and comfort among the chaos.

And so the teenage, and student, years ensued. The cleaners in my University were in despair of my habits – sailing gear drying in the shower and the carpet nowhere to be seen. I was far too busy with sporting activities and socialising at the Student Uni Bar to be cleaning and gardening. Pah! That’s for retired people.

But as time moved on, the backpack I arrived in Sydney with, made way for the trappings of domestic life. I still wasn’t very tidy, but I tried. It was simply that domesticity was not at the top of my list of priorities.

Then a few things happened that triggered a change. First of all came this thing called a ‘mortgage’. With financial servitude to Westpac came a strange but surprising sense of pride in my home. Not enough to take precedence over my social and sporting life, but enough to “do cleaning on the weekend”.

With the arrival of my first child it suddenly occurred to me that my merit as a mother was exponentially linked (amongst other things) to the tidy, or otherwise state, of my home. In my mind, not only should I exclusively breastfeed, provide my baby with only organic food and read them truck loads of books before bed; but one must be able to eat off the floor and see your face reflecting back from the taps. After all I wasn’t working, right? And so somehow, after years of a blissful “each to their own” happy but messy existence, I had allowed what I call “Mess Stress” to enter my life.

Mothers group was a case study in itself. Your own baby crawling across your dog hair ridden floor was one thing but other peoples babies and the potential horror of my newly acquired mum friends (all of whom were bound to be comparing me to the previous venue and making a mental note to decline the next invite) was another matter entirely. My mother group pals all turned out to be really cool and lovely people thankfully!

I returned to work part time, muddled through and further developed this ridiculous idea that if people are coming over you must suddenly stop being who you normally are, and pretend you are Hyacinth “Bouquet” reincarnated. The house was never tidy for long, if at all, but it did bother me. Incidents of “mess stress” breakouts were from time to time unleashed on my husband, who was also guilty of the mess but luckily for him not the stress.

This went on for some time, my second beautiful daughter arrived and we moved house to our dream block of land with the standard rambling house, backing onto bush in the gorgeous southern suburbs of Sydney, and I eventually took on a very demanding working role. It paid well, but sucked up a lot of my spare time and attention. The house remained as messy as ever. It was only ever tidy in my dreams, and in the pages of the stacked piles of interior magazines which portrayed my future, Scandinavian style home with no plastic toys in it. This made me increasingly grumpier.

I dreamed my whole house was clean

It would be dramatic and fitting to say that I had a major light bulb moment where I suddenly realised that the mess didn’t really matter, but it was really a gradual dawning and a few telling interactions with friends that made me realise a few home truths.

My messy house it seemed, (whilst it continued to cause me stress and to lapse into my Scandi Style/Antiplastic daydream) was a source of great relief and comfort to others who entered!

Compliments such as “after I met you and came to your house I realised its actually ok to have stuff out on the bench!”, “I feel so much better when I come to your house”, and “its not that messy, my kids really love coming here as there is always craft!”. My realisation culminated with the offer of a helping hand during my third pregnancy from a lovely friend who tamed the chaos under my kitchen sink while I attacked the linen cupboard. We laughed at my crazy mess whilst ironically our three year olds were trashing the joint downstairs. Opening up my messy house further opened my friendships and made them honest.

With such refreshing and revelatory feedback, it was suddenly clear that is not the mess within our own homes that causes the stress, but the unattainable absence of mess in the magazines, and the imagined order in the homes of our friends and peers. The reality is that such tidiness (for most of us) only exists for about 10% of the time, and that for the other 90% of the time we are just muddling through like everyone else.

Allowing unattainable standards to dominate our lives is fertile ground for anxiety and unhappiness. Whilst I am continually aiming for the order and organisation, that I’ll admit, can make family life easier, I have really learned to let my mess stress go.

If people are coming for a long overdue lunch or dinner I do make an effort to provide a comfy and relaxing space for my friends. A home that is befitting the love and care I have put into the food, but not at the expense of enjoying their company or turning the entire occasion into a stressful episode.

Since I am absolutely the last person in the world to go giving out advice on how to keep your home and life tidy, I am going to share my top 5 tips for getting by and minimising incidences of mess stress.

Actually I can think of just one. Always have cake in the tin, and put the kettle on.

Charley. X


photoMeet Charley…

Sailor, mother, blogger, home cook and ex Corporate Project Professional.

My great loves are my three girls, my husband, good food, two pet ducks and my faithful Labrador Rhubarb.

I’m passionate about getting kids into the great outdoors and, when not pottering around the local inshore coastline with my family, I can be found at home in The Heron’s Nest otherwise known as “The Messy Pile of Sticks” working on ‘Special Projects’.

I write about the things I love at www.secretwater.com.au

That’s right, today I take the title of the Worst Mum in the World.

Here I sit in the waiting room of a local hospital, waiting for my 6 year old to have root canal on two of her top teeth, and three holes filled on her bottom teeth.

Two months ago, Adison started complaining about a sore tooth. I didn’t really take a lot of notice, she says a lot of things hurt, and knowing which pains are worse than others can be difficult at times. My immediate response was to get her to brush her teeth and use some floss in case a piece of food was stuck and irritating her.

A few days later she said her tooth was hurting again. This time my ears pricked up. I helped her brush her teeth that night, and this time had a look inside. I could see what looked like a hole in one of her top molars. And my heart sunk.

Oh shit. What now?

Whilst we weren’t accustomed to having stores of lollies, chocolate, soft drink or juice in our house, suddenly I felt like I had dropped the ball.

‘Brush your teeth!’ was a common phrase called out in our home, followed by screams and a wrestling session just to get a toothpaste smothered toothbrush into the mouths of my two kiddies. Sometimes I would get them whilst they played happily in the bath, would be drenched in water at the end, and really not sure whether I had in fact brushed any teeth, or just their lips and noses.

After asking a few friends, we were recommended a family dentist, and booked Adi in to have them take a look. She braved numbing needles in the chair and a filling that the dentist informed us was so large, she may need further work on it in the future. Over the next few weeks, Adison was back at the dentist for a second treatment and change of filling, two courses of antibiotics, and then experienced an abscess on the gum above the affected tooth. This was when we were told she would need to have the tooth removed.

Anxiety kicked in when my daughter heard this in the dentist chair and started crying uncontrollably. We were given a referral to a paediatric dental specialist, and managed to get in first thing the next morning. During the consultation with the specialist I was informed that she would need one removal, one major filling, and three minor fillings.

Did you know that 60% of all children living in metropolitan areas end up requiring treatment for holes in their teeth.

There were two options to treat the issue – removal in the chair and fillings over a few sessions, or book into hospital and have it all done in one go. I opted for the hospital. I knew if Adison felt pain in the dentist chair, she would not return for any more treatment. Though when we went to book, we were looking at at least a two week wait before we could  book in.

Once I explained this to my husband, he thought to ring around and see if there was any other paediatric dentists close by that could help us sooner. A family member recommended another dentist who informed us that we could have root canal performed on both of her top teeth, as the second one looked to be almost as bad as the first. This would allow Adison to keep her teeth and she would not have to wear a spacer, which would cause us as much hassle to get her to wear as it was to get the kids to brush their teeth. Once again we opted for the hospital, and the new dentist could book us in the following Monday. Today.

So now I wait for my little girl to wake up from her procedure. And if nothing else Adison knows she has to brush her teeth morning & night now.

I just have my little boy to scare into brushing his teeth now…

Crazy Mummy Syndrome Blog

I admit I have been pretty absent from talking to you lately. And that is not because I don’t care, but more because I wasn’t coping.

Recently I received some heart breaking family news and I had to take some time out. I was going through the motions, getting through each day, barely. So I gave myself time to get through the initial shock, by not putting a limit on my grief. I recognised I wasn’t at my best, and I didn’t beat myself up because of it. I have learnt over the years a few simple things to do, in order to get back on track with my depression.

Be open about your troubles

I started by letting those nearest and dearest to me know what was going on. The support I received just from being honest was humbling. Everyone around us was willing to help where necessary.

Ask for help

When offered help, take it. You really don’t have to be a superhero. Friends and family are there to help you, just like you would help then if the tables were turned. You need to allow your network of support the chance to lend a hand.

Don’t fight the down times

Allowing the sadness to wash over you without fighting it, can be very therapeutic. There is no possible way you can be happy all the time, so recognising each individual feeling – anger, sadness, guilt – can also help you identify when you need to give yourself time out.

Recognise when you need time out

As you start to realise the different emotions, you will also know when you need to take a step back. This doesn’t mean checking out, but more a surrender to your body. Postpone those meetings that are making you feel anxious to attend, and start the steps that help you get through the tough times. If you are honest when you reach out, people will respect you more for it. This also ties in with being open and asking for help.

You would be surprised how many others you speak to have been in the same space before, once you allow them into your world. Depression and anxiety is common, and although there are varying stages and types, those that understand will always be in your corner.

Llew Dowley The Crazy Mummy Blog

Any one who knows me, knows I like my coffee.

But boy, am I all over the place… My routine has been screwed up a bit lately. And my body can tell.

My usual routine is get up, eat breakfast with the kids – hopefully just after 6.00am (although this morning it was 5.38am), get the kids dressed, shower (if I have time), pack bags and send them out the door by 7.00am to before school care and kindy with their dad, as he heads to work.

Once I am showered and decent (although just getting showered some mornings is enough), I will pop out to my local corner shop and buy a coffee. I then return home to start the day in front of my computer. Although sometimes, if I know I have a lot on, I go straight to my computer and settle for a Nespresso, or a cup of tea at home.

This morning, I got up (that’s right at 5.38am), ate breakfast with the kids, went though all the usual early morning rituals, even managing to have a shower & wash my hair. The kids and my hubby went off into the world, and I sat down and got stuck into work. The next thing I know it is 9.30am and I’ve been working like it is already lunchtime.

Wow, so much had been done, I was feeling very productive. I knew I had moved my gym session to just after lunch, and so was working furiously to make up for the time later in the day that I wouldn’t be at my desk.

But as the hours went on, I started to feel ‘off’. I could feel a slight headache behind both eyes. I was tired, lethargic, and just wanted to lay down on the lounge and sleep.

My first thought was I felt this way because of my flu shot the day before. My arm was certainly reeling in pain from the needle. And so I was convinced that the change in my body was from my injection the day before.

I went to the gym, and went through my session with my personal trainer. It wasn’t until I left, that I realised I hadn’t had a coffee all day. It was now 2.30pm and as I walked into the coffee shop, I almost started salivating. Thankfully there was no line and within minutes I held my fresh cup of coffee in my hands.

As soon as I took a sip, I felt tension in my body slip away.

I didn’t feel quite as ‘sick’ from my injection any more. And boy, oh, boy did it taste good.

oh dear…. I’m not sick at all.

Next time, I think I’ll just look at feeding my addiction, before claiming I’m getting the flu. If coffee doesn’t fix it – I must be sick.

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Happy Mothers day gift ideasWe all know how hard being a mum is. The everyday battles to get the kids dressed, fed and out the door for anything. Whether it be school, day care, or grocery shopping, as mums there is always something that needs to be done.

Yet we don’t get the chance to appreciate our mums when we a young. We take everything they do for granted. I keep hearing my mum’s voice come out of me when I’m talking to my kids all the time. And it is now that I realise that, just how hard it was for my mum.

My mother was the main caretaker of the three of us from when I was 11. She worked full time, had two kids in primary school and my older sister in high school. My grandparents would pick the three of us up, and feed us when my mum had to work late. This was how we lived. I never gave it a second thought.

As I got older and headed into high school, I started to notice all the things I was missing out on. In primary school, I never had play dates after school, as I went to after school care. Then when I started going to high school, I would have to pick up my brother from primary school and bring him home.

I didn’t realise it at the time, but my mum was working so hard, just to be able to buy groceries. I remember being a shit of a teenager and yelling at mum because I was so hard done by. We would have screaming matches about the stupidest of things.

It wasn’t until I had my daughter I realised the heartache, pain and grief I had caused my mum for so many years.

Though it has still taken me a few more to understand what she was saying to me all those years.

‘You don’t know how much I do for you kids.’

And this is the same thing I find myself repeating to my own kids.
They don’t know. They won’t know. Until they get there themselves.

And so I talk to my friends about it. I talk to complete strangers, mother’s I meet standing in line at a coffee shop.
See as mother’s we share a bond. We know how tough it is. We can look at another mother, across a shopping centre, fighting with their toddler, or teenager, and smile knowingly in support.

So why not make a Mums day? Why not show her YOU know everything she is doing for her kids. Reward her as you know she would reward you, just for being a mum. Send her a gift for Mother’s Day. Because isn’t that what Mother’s Day is all about?

Recognising what Mums do, every other day of the year.

Lately there have been a lot of commercials getting on my nerves, but none more so that the recent Nissan X-Trail ad. If you are unsure of which one I’m talking about I’ve inserted it below.

Nissan Xtrail Commercial

I have viewed this commercial over and over each night, and the more I see it the more I get annoyed. My OCD kicks in and I think to myself, who thought this was a good advertisement for a family car?

The first thing that comes to mind whilst watching it is – A) the daughter looks to be holding a milkshake in a large cup WITHOUT A LID! and B) the son has a container of green slime, once again, WITHOUT A LID!

I mean, come on.

I don’t know any mother who would –

1. Give their child a milkshake that big, or at least
2. Allow their child into the car with it, and
3. Allow the milkshake in the car WITHOUT A LID! or
4. Give their son green slime, then
5. Let them play with it in the car,
6. WITHOUT A LID!

Not only do I have a problem with what the kids are doing, but the mother has a full bucket of popcorn. My kids would have taken it from me by the time I got it to the car, spilled it as they got into the car, and then thrown a tantrum that they’d spilled the popcorn.

Not to mention the husband’s driving ability. He takes the car off road, through a corn field, then through what looks like a highly toxic factory.

Really?

There are so many problems with this commercial, that it send s me crazy! What is their marketing tactic? If it is for a family car, It certainly isn’t winning me over. Is it to show me that it can go off road? Because if my interior will look like that after taking it off road, I’m not sure I even want to take it off road!

I pity the people who have to clean it.

But then, that might just be my OCD showing.