Happy Present-Mongering, Dear Friend

There are many seasons to a life, don’t you think.

One season which is highly enjoyable, yet at the same time irksome, is the present-giving season.

In quick succession, your once single off-the-wall friend, can be engaged, married, knocked up and then the proud caretaker of a wee babbie.

If the indignity of watching your friend turn into a sleep-deprived milk bar (or partner of one) wasn’t enough to bear, there’s the requirement to celebrate each step along this path by giving them a gift.

There’s the Engagement Present.  The Kitchen Tea present.  The Wedding Present.  The Pregnancy present.  The Baby Shower Present.  And then of course, the present for the wee squealing thing itself.

Now I’m not against present-giving.  Not at all. I adore both giving and receiving presents.  However, during this particular season of a friend’s life, it can be a bit much, no?

I heartily support the wedding present, and despite my preference for purchasing a tangible gift, do understand the wishing well affair that is now so popular since we shack up well before we marry these days.  You only need so many toasters and towels.

Also, the baby present.  There’s nothing cuter than buying OOO clothes again, or even a lovely pampering gift for the new parents themselves. Not that’s it about me of course.

However, the Kitchen Tea and the Baby Shower ? Meh.

I should be clear here though.  I LOVE parties.  Any excuse for a party.  I love dress up parties, dress down parties, cocktail parties, Christmas parties.  Any party really.  So if you’re going to turn your Kitchen Tea into an uproarious celebration, I’ll be there, literally with bells on if you’d like.  But a present?  You’re getting one in five minutes at the wedding darling, keep your shirt on.

And the Baby Shower?  Well, in my opinion, it’s a little hard to kick up your heels at the Baby Shower.  As much as I enjoy decorating a teeny little singlet…. actually scrap that, I have zero interest in decorating teeny little singlets.

The prompt for this post was a friend’s bewilderment at what to put on the card for a baby shower.  I suggested “Happy Present-Mongering” which she thought hilarious but probably less than PC.

Having said that, I’m off shopping now.  My children are attending parties for 4 little darlings tomorrow, so it’s time to brandish the Visa.

That’s the next season.

To The Tooth Fairy: A Warning from HR

Dear Tooth Fairy,

It has come to our attention that you have been remarkably lax in the performance of your duties.

We refer in particular to the following instances  :

1.   Over 5 households have reported that you have repeatedly failed to attend on the night the tooth has been left for your retrieval.  Sweeping into a child’s room at 9.00am after they have advised their parent you have not attended is simply not acceptable and puts you in significant danger of being seen by a child (and you know full well the permanent, in fact fatal to you, consequences of such an occurrence).

2.  In Household B, we have been advised that up to THREE TEETH have waited in a matchbox beside the child’s bed before you decided to attend.  This child apparently made repeated complaints to their mother about this before it was brought to our attention.  (If this occurs again your contract will be terminated without further notice).

3 In Household C, you took the tooth out of the box in which it was kept for safe-keeping and replaced it with a number of LEAVES.  This has caused untold trauma to the child in question.  We have heard this caused you significant amusement.  It is not funny.  If this child takes action against us in future for mental pain and suffering due to your actions we cannot guarantee that we will not seek to recover from you any damages won.

Please take this as a final warning.

Thank you.


I have a secret.  It’s something I don’t talk about often for fear of reprisal.

My husband is a Super Dad.

Shhhhhh!  I don’t want this getting around. I know it’s unfair. I’ve read the articles, seen the stats.  Most women, even if they work, take on more than their fair share of the burden of housework, cooking and looking after kids.

My husband is the exception to the rule. He’s fantastic with my girls, an amazing cook and enjoys, ENJOYS (I know, it’s sickening) nothing more when he gets home from work than a quick vacuum around the kitchen and lounge to make himself feel King of his Domain.

He then lights a few choice lamps, some incense, tidies the lounge, bathes the kids and cooks a delicious meal.

It’s at this point that I tend to trip through the front door, weary from a long day of marketing and management.

Invariably, three clean, smiling, pajama-ed girls turn from the table, look at me and announce “Mummy, you’re just in time for dinner”.  OK, OK  I may have left reality a little here.  Sometimes that is the case, and sometimes one of the girls is kicking another under the table or proclaiming “I won’t eat that”.  But what I have described DOES HAPPEN in my house, just not all the time.

Furthermore he is completely and utterly comfortable with this.  He has no insecurities about being the Dad in the playground most of the time.  He doesn’t give a toss what other people think.  He goes to the veggie garden at school, snips a little rosemary and parsley for the evening’s dinner menu and chats with the mums who tend the garden and are glad to see the herbs go to good use.

The only time he has been caught out was the day he was playing at home with our girls and one of them put her tiara on his head.  That afternoon he went out to the shops to find some replacement vacuum parts.  I was at home at the time so he decided to go solo.  He went into the shop, did what he needed to do, got back into the car and upon looking in the rear vision mirror realised that he still had the tiara on his head.  “I wondered why the guy was looking at me funny” was his only comment when he got home,  after first asking me accusingly “WHY didn’t you tell me I still had the tiara on my head?”.  Which of course I couldn’t reply to, being as I was helplessly convulsing in laughter on the floor.

I do pay my penance though.  He does occasionally go away for work, and when he does it’s for up to 9 weeks at a time.  Which leaves me as mum, marketer, manager, cook, and cleaner.

When this happens I tend to go into shock.  After the reality has sunk in, I go to the wardrobe and silently, reluctantly, but with a good deal of pride, pull out and dust off my Super Mum outfit.