As you may know, I have a bit of a parenting inferiority complex related to the new class of society, the yummy mummy. Today, on the eve of the party for 60 plus which my kids are overwhelmingly excited about, I found myself, once again, comparing my life and experiences to that of my yummy mummy nemesis.
My plan was to have a lovely healthy breakfast with the kids, do the school run (lose 1), beg a favour from the grandparents (lose a 2nd), then do an hours shopping for the ingredients before embarking on a successful days cooking while the nanny cleans the pigsty, sorry, I mean house.
The menu I had dreamt up involved a variety of entrées, 2 main courses, a variety of salads, and pavlova. All sounds good so far, right?
The difficulty is that I have 4 kids, 4 chickens, 2 hamsters, 2 guinea pigs, and 1 nanny. I also have a day until the party. The yummy mummy would of course have achieved this menu with ease. She would have planned weeks in advance, and probably pre-ordered her entrees from Waitrose. She would have bought the ingredients well in advance, and ensured adequate childcare the day before to allow her to really focus on crafting spectacular food.
I got no breakfast as I spent most of the morning switching between re-catching the guinea pigs which the twins had released (again) and meeting demands for a range of breakfasts and TV choices. Muesli is totally overrated anyway.
I did successfully dispose of 2 kids, then made my way to Costco. I am not even going to go into this experience in detail. Let’s just say, it involved 5 security guards, several radios, cctv, and the missing twin being found weeing behind the toilet rolls (I was proud she made the association between toilet roll and weeing, but Costco didn’t feel the same). Sadly, the attention seemed to inspire the twins, and following the 3rd weeing incident, I bailed with less than half the ingredients.
While trying to get through the till, I got a call from my kids dance class reminding me that I had promised to make sure we actually turned up on time today as the teacher was having an assessment. Dance class started in 15 minutes, and I was 30 minutes away and minus a child. I did get there, albeit 40 minutes late. I even had 3 kids with me, though 2 of them were covered in wee and had to be changed during ‘The Wheels on the Bus”. I am not sure the assessor was impressed.
We stopped at another supermarket on the way home. When I got home and tried to start preparing the curry for the party, I realised I was still missing several key ingredients (including the curry paste). I had been totally distracted by wine offers and kids.
3rd and final supermarket trip, and I nailed the ingredients list. Came home to start cooking. Needless to say, the yummy mummy is unlikely to get to the point where she dumps a twin with the plumber fitting a new bathroom (said twin having actually dropped a fishing weight from sufficient height to put a hole in the existing bath, therefore requiring a new bathroom) saying “do not return him for at least 15 minutes or else I may…never make you tea again”. To be fair, he did keep him for 20 minutes. Mind you. While I did that the 3 year old was sampling mallow while colouring in her tongue with felt tip pens.
The yummy mummy would probably follow a recipe instead of reading a reicipe once historically and thereafter remembering roughly the ingredients and chucking them into a pot in no particular order, or proportion. At this point, the yummy mummy would be relaxing in a bath with one of those foam thingies separating each of her toenails so the perfect red polish can dry. She need not worry about tomorrow as Waitrose has it all under control.
I have now made half a curry, half a set of 25 rainbow jellys and some sloe gin marshmallows which may or may not set, as well as 3 gin and tonics and a glass of wine (which I have drunk). I have just got the last kid to bed, caught the guinea pigs, and am drinking wine and cuddling them.
So does it matter? Yes, it does. The yummy mummy’s firework party will be a sleek, sophisticated, Waitrose supported affair. Her guests will be treated, and her kids will behave. However, I am blessed with some of the most amazing friends in the world. When they receive the invitation, they will know I am drinking wine. They will also know that it will be a bloody good laugh. They know that there is no way I will manage to feed them all edible food, which is why the dishes started arriving at school drop off today, having been home made by the friends who are coming to the party. A curry, if completed, will be enough, because another mummy down the street is sorting the rice (when I said how do I microwave enough packet rice for 60, she advised that it should be boiled, and she will keep it warm in her aga (I know, I have always wanted one too!)).
I guess that the point is that although the marshmallows may not set, the curry may be too hot, and I probably should have bought pizza, it will be ace. I will have my friends there, the kids will have their friends there, chicken pie and although salmon and broccoli quiche are totally incompatible, who the fuck cares. The kids will think we are totally ace, and anyway, one of the kids dads eats fire. You can’t get better than that.
Roll on tomorrow!