You have to apply your own shoes to your own feet before you leave the house. Poking one toe in one shoe and then proclaiming that you can't do it, DOES NOT COUNT as a good effort.
We have brought up five kids, my children's father and I. I had my first child whilst I was still at school, and the others came in rapid succession when I was at University. Of course, we didn't have maids.
I was asked recently why I choose to put my life on the internet and allow everyone to know my business. I had a good think and have realised there isn't one simple answer, and it completely depends on the topic.
Yes it may look a bit messy when you pop round for a cuppa but that isn't because I have sat on my backside watching day time tv all day. It is because I have spent time playing with my kids, helping them with their homework, or preparing a family meal for us all to sit round the table and eat later.
Children aren't for everyone, and I wish other people would accept that. I'm tired of being judged for not wanting children. Women's sole job in life isn't to have children. It's to give themselves the best life they can imagine, as we only have one shot at it.
Playgroups can be noisy, intimidating places and as the responsible adult it is generally considered unacceptable to burst into tears and throw yourself on the floor screaming if you decide you don't really like it.
It is early rising and midnight waking, it is wiping noses... and bums. It is the park all year round; it is play dough, sand and crayons. It is travelling heavy and never 'nipping out'; it is laughter - so much laughter.
Here's our dilemma - we have a child who is gifted (I hate the word) and who storms ahead, propelled by her curiosity of the world around her, her impatience at not knowing answers, and her desire to rule the world and see her name in lights.
What is it with 10-year-old girls these days, or is it just mine? 'Er Mum, why are you trying so hard to be a teenager? You're 41!!! You are going to ...
OK so with hindsight our lives were a little bit more unhealthy and risky. But it makes me sad as we were free to be innocent. We could run around outside and eat crap and pretend to be Spuggy from Byker Grove, not some polished American beauty queen...
Kids found the snack less tasty when it had been presented as healthy in the story and they also ate less of the snack if the food served any goal - such as helping them learn to read which confirms the notion that snacks can't be both good and good for you.
" A toddler-o! Why, didn't you know? He has a terrible temper, and terrible scream, He won't share things and he's really mean."
You've found your mummy best friend. She points out her little angel and the warm fuzzies fade as you watch him trying to decapitate a Labradoodle. Here's your four step plan for what you do when you love her but you can't stand her kid.
The "perfect" family is amplified around you and each time it cuts a little deeper into your gaping failure wound. But you know what? As tough as this sounds, life isn't full of fairytale endings and it pains me to say it, but it just isn't.
We are all entitled to free speech (thank democracy). We have control over what we choose to read, and how we respond to it; and we all have our own set of values to dictate what we feel is appropriate to share.
The postcard version doesn't tell of the lunchtime we were sitting in a super-busy tourist trap restaurant on a seafront waiting for our lunch. A six-year-old was hungry, and started feeling 'cold' because we were in the shade, you know, to avoid burning in the hottest part of the day.