Finally I can share with you all a successful trip out with a toddler.
Hoo-feckin-ray – bout time.
Please don’t stop reading if you’re used to my woeful tales of disaster.
These did still occur.
Just at the end of the day, altogether at home.
Those of you who have followed me for a while will know that my trips out with a toddler don’t always go to plan.
So Saturdays tend to be when the three of us spend time as the complete Wolfpack .
And cooped up in the house just doesn’t cut it if you want to remain married and a (fairly) sane parent.
You’ll recall our Saturday morning bacon Sarnie outings back when Ella had not long been on the planet.
The days of sitting sipping coffee and snaffling sarnies in semi-peace at Crusoe’s or Tynemouth Park
Or do I have rose-tinted glasses on?
Yeah she couldn’t move. But I don’t think I appreciated it as I was so tired and in a mental fog.
The fog has lifted and been replaced with physical exhaustion. Which actually seems to be getting better as she’s not running away as much.
It’s now reverting back to a mental battle. A battle of listening (or not) to instructions.
So on this particular Saturday adventure, it took us to Plessey Woods.
I realised we were last here in the Autumn in All The Eighteen Month Olds.
Free parking, fresh air and not far to drive.
We donned on our wellies, duffel coats and hats and off we trundled in the car.
Hurrah. No falling asleep en route.
So far so good on our trip out with a toddler.
Out we jumped from the family mobile. inhaled the crisp February fresh air and the three of us walked hand in hand like a modern-day Vonn-Trapp Family.
It was cold, but milder than it had recently been.
The Little Lady held both our hands as we crossed the carpark, performing that old one-two-three weeeeeeee swing up in the air.
We got to the field opposite the park and The Man broke free. He started running across the slippery mud and towards the bare trees.
The trees we had played under back in Autumn collecting conkers.
I couldn’t believe that it was a full four months since we last visited here. Time really does fly when you’re (having fun) busy raising a toddler.
The Man picked up a stick and used it against the make shift xylophone.
Of course the Little Lady copied, giggling away.
This is wonderful.
This is what it must feel like to be the perfect parent and have things go to plan.
I’m not used to this.
It ironically puts me on edge.
Waiting for the punchline.
The Man picked up another stick and threw it in the air.
Almost as if we had a dog, and our little version of a terrier went running after it. The Man threw another stick and it landed upright in the mud.
I mean – what are the chances?
We edged our way further along the field and we came towards the Owl statue.
‘Owl! Owl!’ shouted The Little Lady.
Proud mam moment. She recognises the Owl.
Oh this is going FAR too swimmingly.
As she approached the owl with such excitement and trepidation, her little feet and their clambering pace did not create enough resistance between her wellies and the gloopy mud.
Down she went.
Hands and knees, welched into the brown, goeey earth.
‘Ooops a daisy’ I said in my best cheery voice, only to kneel down and lose my footing and end up pushing her further into the mud.
Parent. Of. The Year.
Which The Man took his greatest pleasure in pointing out to me.
‘What you doing? You’re pushing your daughter further into the mud!’
Oh Am I? I hadn’t realised. Maybe I’ll push you into the mud.
Jesting and parental disgruntlements asides, all was made well with a couple of swipes of a wet wipe.
We trundled along the ‘Billy Goats Gruff’ bridge.
And made our merry way to the drums and the Ogre house.
We crossed over a couple more bridges, went up and down some steps and back round again.
And jumped in muddy puddles.
All without incident.
There were a lot of dog walkers out and Ella, although loves dogs, can be vary wary.
Some owners picked up on this and gently brought their dogs over, asking if she wanted to stroke them.
I bent down and stroked the dog first to show her that they were being friendly. ‘Look, they’ve come to say hello!’
And she slowly copied.
She’s a cautious soul, which I think is inherent from myself.
So thank you to the lovely dog owners who did this for her.
She waved goodbye to them. ‘Bye-Bye Doggy!’
A rather tired Little Lady had to then be carried back to the car (by The Man – so that he got covered in mud by her wielding wellies and not me hee-hee).
I sat in the back with her. The Man had to pull my wellies off for me and put them in the boot as they were caked too.
He then did a lap of the carpark to clean his. The car had recently been cleaned and I was getting ancy at the thought of (more than usual) mess.
The return journey involved me singing nursery rhymes and pointing animatedly at a book. We were picking up fish and chips and I wanted her to stay awake to eat them and then nap afterwards.
I know it looks like I’ve already taken a bite out of my fish cake. I hadn’t. I’d had to cut some off for Ella to try. Then decided to take a picture. Photography skills at its best.
By the way – our Chippy Lunch was from the Brockwell Chippy and a total bargain. £3.25 for chips, fishcake (the man got a jumbo sausage) a mahoosive bread bun and mushy peas. The man also got a Diet Coke and the two meals and drink came to less than £8. How amazing is that?? (not an ad just an appreciation for a bargain).
So off we went, into the sunset to snaffle our chippy lunch. Birds a singing and faces a smiling.
I’d like to say The End and They A Lived Happily Ever After.
Later that day, as the sun crept towards the horizon and cast shadows on our living room, a de-robed doll was being fed spaghetti.
She was de-robed as her outfit was in the wash due to a collision with Coco-Pops milk.
The doll was now enduring (or I was at least – mess palpitations) a worse fate in the fact that her white unattachable outfit was now stained orange.
Then came two events at once.
While The Little Lady was in the bath, to my absolute horror, I spotted a wasp on her bedroom floor.
Now let me get one thing straight.
I am TERRIFIED of the feckers.
I’ve never been stung so this only fuels the anxiety.
Where had it came from?
I’d had a window open that day to air our bedroom and I’d been in the loft.
Maybes it had fallen from the loft.
And that it was the Queen wasp. Starting her nest amongst our suitcases, Christmas decorations and miscellaneous shite (good luck with that pet!)
‘Oh. My God!’
‘What?’ came The Man’s voice from the bathroom.
‘There’s a wasp in Ella’s room!’
‘Eh what? Oh no!’
‘I know! Argh – I can’t go in there. It’ll get me.’
‘Well you’re going to have to.’
‘Can’t you …’
‘No – because I’m going to have to deal with this shit.’
What, Ella in the bath? I’d rather swap.
As I stood sweating just staring at the black and yellow pointless insect, I heard something else that made me freeze.
‘Ella, you’ve pooed in the bath!’
By shit, The Man had meant actual shit.
Christ, I thought things had been too good to be true.
My brain sprang into action. I needed to kill the wasp first as The Man was now going to have to bring Ella through to the bedroom earlier than scheduled.
I dashed downstairs, grabbed the can of magic insect killer spray, ran back up the stairs and took aim at the wasp which thankfully, was still on the floor.
I sprayed and sprayed and sprayed, the whole time waiting for it to make its move and zoom at me, taking aim with its awful tail and stinging me all over in fury.
But it didn’t.
The magic spray was working. It stopped walking along the floor.
I suppose it must’ve been injured to start with as it had made no attempt to fly under my watch.
The whole time The Man had been shouting at me to hit it with something but I was building up my courage, picking my moment.
Which was now. I grabbed a book off Ella’s shelf and dumped it on top of the wasp. For extra measure, I stood on it.
God I’m an awful person.
I would never do this to a spider or a fly. Or any other insect. But wasps are evil, they are the devil.
The Man was now eager to bring in a towelled Ella to get her ready while I went on my next mission; scoop poop out of the bath.
So there you have it.
No matter how successful a day you think you’re having in one aspect of your parenting life, there’s always a counter-balance.
The wasp incident was just the universe being mean.
But at least I had a successful trip out with a Toddler for once.
Love Missuswolf xxx