Setting and achieving targets is an intrinsic part of life and this is often replicated in the way schools monitor their pupils' learning. But do parents get enough information about where their child is in relation to their expected achievement?
Family trees are also a great interest of mine. Unfortunately, my own family tree has had a bit of surgery. A few branches have been cut off and some of that wood has been used to fuel fire. However, recently, this tree of mine has seen some new growth. I'm pleased to feel strength in it again.
While we were eating our first meal in the tent, I suddenly realised there was a smell of poo nearby. When I asked why, our eldest daughter rather worryingly informed us that she needed the toilet.
When my twin girls were nine months old and my son was two, my husband packed his bags and left. To say it was a tough time would be an understatement. I wasn't a one parent family by choice. I had never intended to bring up my kids this way. But you can't change the circumstances- all you can do it make the best of what you've got.
Later we returned home. Instead of carrying my new born child I carried a yellow folder. Inside was the information we would need to help get us through the next few weeks. How to organise a funeral, register a death, counselling services and Sands.
I more than anything wish I was always there at your beck and call. Reading when you wanted me to. And not washing up. Always willing to watch Peppa with you. And not tidying up Lego. Saying "OK!" to every chocolate bar and every time you begged to stay up late?
My baby is one in a couple of weeks and all of a sudden it just feels so milestoney. Much to my surprise I've gone all knobheadish and smushy about it. I feel like I want to sniff his hair and drink in his babyness before he starts lobbing lightsabers at my head and asking me to pull his finger.
Support for children with mental health issues is actually decreasing at alarming speed. £80m has been cut from the NHS mental health budget for children and adolescents in the past four years, including £35m in the last year alone. Without access to help and treatment, children's issues will only continue into adulthood - all the time developing into more serious conditions.
The uniform has been carefully purchased, washed and ironed to an inch of its life and the painful task of labelling the whole flipping thing is finally done.The time has come at last time for the new school year and the kids are FINALLY back at school! I can feel your excitement from here.
Fathers may experience witnessing they're loved ones and baby in distress in the labour room and sometimes witnessing even more blood loss than the mother. The father feels so unhelpful as he watches the trauma of unfold in front of him.
We know that many parents are digitally capable and a significant number of them are confident in parenting online - however the online world changes fast and it can be hard for parents to feel like they are keeping up.
Right now feeding your infant would be like sticking a giant gin nipple in their face and syphoning off last night's post-3am Jaeger-Bombs... You've thrown up in your own hair and made the decision just to 'brush it in', and for the first hour you were awake this morning you couldn't remember how many children you actually had...
We need to break the taboo - and the only way to break a taboo is by talking about any 'challenging issue' openly. We need bereaved parents to feel able to talk openly about their babies if they so wish.
I have blamed myself for not being 'healthy enough', for not losing enough weight before I became pregnant, for lifting heavy items, for having a glass of wine (before I found out). The list is endless.
I've made it! Three kids have learned to eat, walk, use a toilet, quote Princess Bride, and talk in thick Boston accents (R's are hawd to say, ok?) under my tutelage. But now they are someone else's responsibility from 9am until 3pm.
Despite reaching your limits entertaining the kids day in and day out for six straight weeks (and feeling great comfort in knowing that this period is finally coming to an end), you realise that you have no idea whatsoever when school actually starts back. You know that it's sometime in early September... but that's about it.
Christ alive I've never known a rollercoaster of emotions quite like the last three and a half years. Gone are the 'good days' and 'bad days'. Days are less easy to emotionally rank now. Sometimes I encounter the full spectrum of emotions in the same day.
Enforcing this tough policy has resulted in surprisingly pleasant outcomes. The main one is that my children learned to engage themselves actively, either with pen and paper, make-belief dolls from corn stalks, paper costumes, pet circus and a whole myriad of creative past times that became the hallmark of their materially poor but spiritually rich childhood.