why cafes and kids simply don’t mix

I live in the city. I live in a flat. I have 2 young energetic kids.

Now back in the day I loved nothing better than to sit back sipping my decaf soy latte. Then I moved on to the little macciato’s, cappuccino’s had a look in for a while and then back to the decaf latte again while pregnant. Add a little biscotti, some people watching, the weekend paper, it doesn’t get much better. So I know my cafe culture. I love my coffee culture. Its one of the best perks of living in a city. The choice of many great coffee haunts.

So what happens when you have a child? You drag them along too of course. You cling on to that cafe culture as long as you can. We don’t have a grassy back yard, where the kids can run around, so parks and playgrounds are utilised nearly daily, or even twice daily. And if it happens to be raining? Why a playdate at the local cafe for a babycino sounds quite lovely.

Now with one child a cafe date is ok. It’s not great, but you can do a little chatting, mop up the spilled milk, back to chatting, help the child back on to the chair after falling off etc etc. You can still cling on to that coffee dream that cafes are still for you, just as a family now.

Then the 2nd one comes along. Lets face it, the dream is shattered. Even with two adults to referee, and a toy box (if the cafe is really kind), it’s just not worth the pain of it all.

The youngest screams for more biscuit, the oldest trickles milkshake down the leg of the table, the youngest snatches the best toy off his big brother, the oldest dongs his brother on the head with said toy and gives him a quick pinch for good measure. The ‘ahhh, this is a lovely coffee ‘ moment is so brief, you vow not come again with the little monkeys.

Then 2  months go by, you forget the pain of it all as the mesmerizing coffee smells tease your nostrils again, wooing you in. So you drag the monkeys in with promises of milkshakes and biscotti again, in order to clutch on to that fleeting memory of old cafe days.

Episode repeats itself, with younger monkey fluttering his eyelids at the waitress as she starts sweeping the metre wide crumbs from under the table and older monkey stepping on outside dogs tail while trying to pat it as we make a hasty retreat once more.

Advertisements

Rainy days

What to do on a rainy day with 2 kids in a flat?

Over a period of time I collect all sorts of things that would usually go into the recycling bin and instead pop them into a box in the kitchen for a ‘rainy day’. Toilet rolls, patty pans, cardboard boxes, what ever looks like it could be turned into something else gets kept and thrown up on top of the kitchen cupboards. The boys love it when I get the box down and empty it out on the lounge room floor as it always changes and we can always make something new and exciting. So this is the rainy day activity box. Egg cartons become buses, toilet rolls become people, the carpet with the pattern becomes the road, and the flat becomes a recycling centre with things thrown about every where!

Another favourite is getting a few bigger boxes and joining them together to make a train for all their stuffed toys. Hours of fun in there.

I also pack away one box of toys that get stored under a bed and brought out as well. That way they can ‘re-discover’ their toys for the day and then that box gets packed away again. This can be rotated a bit so they never get tired of the one thing.

And when that rain won’t stop and it really is far too soggy to go outside, the dining table gets turned into a cubby house. Blanket over the top, and every available blanket and cushion for the inside. All cosy and squishy inside, perfect for 2 boys who love nothing better than to hide away and giggle.

 ….and maybe some space for a moment or two for Mama to lay a weary head down as well.

City hippy worm girl?

I was at playgroup this morning and someone started asking me questions about worm farms, what to put in and what not to. I did for a split second think thats a bit weird, I don’t know you, no one was talking about worms, an odd conversation to start up but hey. I knew the answers so, happily told her what the little fellas like to eat. When I was finished, she said,

“I knew you would know the answers”

“why? Do I look like the wormy type?”

“yes, you do”.

Now, I thought this was really funny. A small part of me thought I should be a little offended, but the rest of me just had a good chuckle and thought ‘city hippy farm girl’ in mind and body.

I was wearing plaits…does that make a difference?