The one where I turned 19 plus 15…

Birthday picWhen I was about 5, I remember thinking that when I turned 19, I would officially be a grown-up. I’m not sure what was so special about that age, but I knew that 19 meant I had arrived. So when 19 finally came and I didn’t particularly feel very grown up, I decided it would probably happen in my twenties. Or mid-twenties. Ok, when I hit 30 for definite. Nope, the moment of ‘grown-up’ still didn’t arrive.

So when I woke up last Saturday (on my 19th plus 15th birthday), you’ll be surprised to know that although I (still) didn’t feel grown up, I did feel different. Tiredness, obviously being my number one feeling, because the boys have NO CONCEPT OF A BIRTHDY LIE-IN. But I also felt quite reflective in my 34th, er I mean 19th plus 15th year, over where I am in my life. And you know what? I’m pretty content with what I’ve ‘grown into’.

So here’s how the day panned out – we had ‘birthday breakfast’, which consisted of Pain-au-Chocolate for the hub and Big Monkey, Little Monkey drew the short straw and got weetabix and I had two, yes two, scones with jam. Don’t care, it was my birthday.

Shortly after that, the hub insisted we give the house a quick blitz. I know – on my birthday! My cleaning skills are what you would call ‘lacklustre’ and if I could justify it, I’d happily sell one of the cats and use the money to pay for a cleaner. And I’m fully aware how lucky I am to have a husband that is good at cleaning – and instigates it too. I just wish he’d crack on and do the whole house by himself while I have a little nap.

Once the annoying cleaning was done, we had lunch and I insisted on dragging the boys out into town to look at a pair of earrings in a shop that I had seen online. Now anyone with children under the age of five knows that leaving the house for anything is often a challenge. Leaving the house with two tired boys and dragging them and a reluctant hub into town on a Saturday, when pre-Christmas shopping crowds are in full-flow is just plain stupid. But we did it anyway.

After taking half an hour to park, wrestle with the buggy, navigate the crowds, ask for directions, rummage through my bag for emergency-shopping-biscuits, pacify both boys after emergency-shopping-biscuits ran out and argue over where the damn shop was…we found out that the damn shop wasn’t there in the first place. {I swear I looked it up online, lying Interwebnet}. I know. The hub was furious; his rage fuelled further by the fact that he couldn’t be too furious because it was my birthday.  The boys were whinging and whining and I learnt two very valuable lessons – 1) no item on this earth is worth taking children under five shopping on a Saturday and 2) always double check that the shop you want is actually there in the first place.

In the evening my sister-in-law and her husband came over to look after the boys so the hub and I could go out for a birthday meal. I suppose I should add here that it was the hub’s birthday the day before mine {thunder stealer} so technically the meal wasn’t all about me, but let’s be honest, it was mainly about me and just a little bit about him.

After putting the boys to bed and reassuring designated baby-sitters that they probably wouldn’t hear a peep out of them, we headed off for our child-free meal. Now this in itself is a treat, and I wondered if I would remember how to behave like a normal human being in a proper restaurant, that didn’t involve colouring pencils, baby wipes and threats of “do that one more time and we’re going home”.

And to my surprise, the memory of how to behave in a child-free dining establishment came flooding back. We relaxed, we laughed, we enjoyed some ‘grown-up drinks’ and devoured our food without having to talk about Spiderman, wipe sticky little hands or ask for ketchup. Although we did ask for ketchup. Grown-up ketchup, of course.


We left the meal happy and relaxed; the good food and time alone was a wonderful birthday treat. We arrived home to find that both boys had woken crying, one setting the other off , and my poor sister-in-law had spent nearly an hour trying to settle them. And just as they finally calmed down, the cat threw up all over the sofa. Lovely. Home sweet home.

So this is what I’ve learnt as I head into my 19th plus 15th year:

  • I’ll probably never feel officially ‘grown up’ but that’s ok.
  • The older I get, the worse my cleaning skills get.
  • Shopping on a Saturday will not be attempted until the boys are over five. And maybe not even then.
  • I love my little family and spending the day doing beautiful-ordinary is just how I like it.
  • Grown up restaurants are lovely every now and then, but eating scones for breakfast in my pyjamas with the boys wins hands-down every time.

6 thoughts on “The one where I turned 19 plus 15…

  1. Daryl Wagstaff says:

    I would definitely sell BOTH cats for a cleaner! (But not Daisy) xx On 20 Nov 2014 21:54, “Crumbs on the carpet” wrote: > > Crumbs on the Carpet posted: “When I was about 5, I remember thinking that when I turned 19, I would officially be a grown-up. I’m not sure what was so special about that age, but I knew that 19 meant I had arrived. So when 19 finally came and I didn’t particularly feel very grown up,” >


  2. Lovely to hear about your birthday ‘crumbs’ My advice Is to keep the child like approach to life. It helps you enjoy the little things in life. Personally I still believe in Father Christmas. Re the blog ‘sell the cats’ know you were joking but we both know who wasn’t! X


  3. Michelle Twin Mum says:

    I think your last statement sums up family life perfectly, it is this simple scones with the kids in pjs moments that make life so rich! Mich x


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