Thursday, 19 February 2015

Lesson 48: A Spontaneous Outing

Yesterday, I made a spontaneous decision. I was pissed off beyond words with being stuck in the house, with one child crying, with his brother running from one end of the lounge to the other (and back again) shouting 'YOU'LL NEVER CATCH ME DARTH VADER,' pissed off with the fourth hour of Scooby sodding Doo. So I decided on a whim that we were going out.

"Right boys, we're going to the beach!" I declared. Unplanned and unpacked this felt quite liberating. The toddler got mildly excited and I decided this must be what those Fun Mums feel like. Let's go to the beach! Right now! God I can be so much fun.

This was at 9am. We would pack a bag and leave immediately, I told them.

11:47 we got in the car.

From the birth of my plan to the moment we were all strapped in the car THREE HOURS had passed. I won't bore you with the full breakdown of those hours because if you are a parent you will simply know how fucking impossible it is to leave the house. There were several nappies, two bottles, at least ten ounces of baby vomit, and one fairly major 'I'm not going ANYWHERE' tantrum.

Going out on a whim no longer felt very whimmy

But we had made it to the car. Game on. And the sun was shining. Everybody happy!

And then the toddler started crying because 'Cat' the sun shade had fallen down and he couldn't pet it. Turns out life is unbearably shit when you've just turned three. Everything is conspiring against you, including removable sun shades. And lego people.

He then proceeded to shout, at regular two minute intervals, 'Why are we going this way?' 'Are we lost?' 'Put the SALLY NAV on' (it's lucky he didn't remember our last adventure where I yelled 'Yeah NOW you've gone quiet you stupid bitch' at poor 'Sally Nav').

I wanted to listen to Radio One. This is out of character (Heart FM all the way) but it's starting to become apparent that my knowledge of pop music starts and ends with the B*witched/A1 era (great era, to be fair). Radio One would bring me up to speed with The Youth of Today. But after ten minutes of 'Mummy I don't like this one. I HATE this song!' it became too wearing and I had to turn it off. The soundtrack to the remaining journey was mostly my sighing. 

We finally arrived at the seafront and I couldn't find a parking space. I'd forgotten it was sodding half term. I finally squeezed the car into a space and nervously eyed the large groups of people (I think I might be allergic to school-age children).

I'd packed a picnic. But as the baby was still asleep, and I was basking in the lack of whinging, we ate it in the car. We did have a sea-view (out the window) so it wasn't a total failure.

And then we headed out. I had a plan. We would go for a walk along the seafront first (with the pram), and then we would shove everything back into the car and take just our merry selves (plus change bag, obvs) onto the beach.

It would be great.

It wasn't great.

The toddler was adamant he didn't need a wee until we had passed the toilets. Where he started doing his 'I'm desperate' jig. We ran back to the toilets. Despite my warnings he touched every visible inch of drug-taker-wee infested toilet rim. I too needed a wee, which I performed by hovering, and with the cubicle door wedged open by the pram. We then washed our hands in a sink which looked equally as contaminated. I think I now need to order a DIY disease test kit.

The baby woke up and cried.

The toddler ran along the seafront, fell over, hurt his hands and cried.

And on the beach? Well, the baby wanted a feed and the toddler gave me a heart attack by shouting 'I'm burying a dog poo!' which he later clarified was 'just pretend.' Something is wrong with a child who pretends dog shit is buried treasure, no?

He's burying a WHAT?
We walked down to the sea. That was nice. I mean, that was actually nice. I breathed in air that wasn't my living room and had a moment. Fun Mum turned up.

And then it was time to go home. The toddler didn't want to go home. So I got down on his level and reasoned* with him about why we were leaving.
[*bribed him with a Creme Egg].

So there you have it. Our spontaneous outing.

There are a few specific pointers I'm taking away from the day:
1) The baby doesn't like sand in his face.
2) The toddler doesn't like the baby.
3) With the exception of George Ezra, I hate all music in The Charts (god do they even still call it that? Mark Goodier still counts down the Top 40 on Sundays right?)
4) Spontaneity is dead to me.

The Unmumsy Mum


  1. Love this! Especially the part about it taking 3 hours to get out of the house after deciding to go somewhere. So true!

  2. Last week was half term....we didn't have our usual toddler gymnastics....decided on spontaneous trip to local farm park...decided this at 8.30....finally left house at 11.00...I feel your pain!! Plus I had the added joy of getting said toddler into said farm park....they had snow....he wanted to walk in every single snow pile.....20 mins to get through a sodding gate!!!

  3. Ah, so that explains it then. I am not a crazy, stressy mother when I suggest an outing. It is all part of of the experience with small children. Not cool 😎. But I did chuckle and nod my head in agreement at your post!

  4. This post totally cracked me is so true and therefore so funny ...I can laugh because my two are now 12 and 14 so I'm at a safe distance..Just think another 10 years or so and you can be nostalgic too :o)
    (and if my amusement is at all annoying I can assure you my teenager and almost teenager will ensure I don't laugh for long!)

  5. Look at it this way: if he thinks a dog poo is buried treasure, he ought to be easily pleased at Christmas..

  6. Is that Exmouth?? Are you near me?

  7. Haha! I had this exact same plan, it turned out almost the same except we ate our picnic under a tiny umbrella that kept blowing away, so we still had sand in our sandwiches!!!! Crying laughing at the memory��

  8. Thank you for being so honest and real! Yes, can relate to all of it... Posted this on my Facebook page for family travelers.

  9. I can hardly breathe for laughing.

  10. <> I can't think of anything useful to say except - yes, this is why we rarely do a day trip. Excellent work. Like the reasoning/bribery.

  11. Love it, I fell out with our sat nav -doris- when she sent me up a goat path, on a cliff face (ok large hill) in a hire car, worst 3 point turn off my life, great start to a family weekend away 😂

  12. The one thing I have learnt, and manage to remember after three years of toddler wrangling: never - and I mean NEVER! say you are going to go somewhere/do something/see someone - until you are actually doing it. No prewarn, no lets look forward to the fun, it'll be exciting - NEVER! listen to me NEVER!!!!!

  13. And Never Ever tell them what is for dinner (no matter how many times they whinge/ask) until it is on the plate ready to eat. That way they only get a second to concoct a reason to not eat it.