Tuesday, July 29, 2008

A good age

When people are getting acquainted, it is not unusual to hear an exchange something along the lines of:

"Oh, you have a child? How old?"

"18 months."

"That's a good age." (with warm sincerity)

Of course, any age can prompt this response. Back in the days Before Children, I might even have had some opinions on what was a good age. I can't remember what they were.

Any given child has good ages. For Ben, this was 2 and 4. For Charlie, it was up to 8 months. Maybe in other families there is a universal good age, but we've not found one yet. 35 perhaps?

On the other hand, 8-10 or 11 months has been pretty universally bad. It seems, in my kids at least, to herald a time of emerging will, without sufficient means to satisfy it. And so it is with Elissa. She's cranky at least as much as she's happy and it's all about frustration. Leaving me with absolutely nothing I can do about it.

Two was not a good age for Charlie, and I was hoping that three might be better. So far it isn't looking good. I don't think I am doing much of a job in helping him manage his anger. He is so wonderful in so many ways - really affectionate, wicked sense of humour, bizarre and delightful. Unfortunately the stubborn, angry side seems to get more press. I just don't feel like I'm getting anywhere. The net result is a little overwhelming. And definitely involves too much yelling and narkiness from me. It might be time for me to do some more reading and get some new inspirations for new approaches. Something needs to give. And I can only wait out Elissa's difficult age.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Guess what?

When you put up the price of pre-mixed drinks, people buy more straight spirits. When they first suggested this price increase, I didn't think they'd really do it. But they raised the tax by 70% on pre-mixed drinks. Since then sales of pre-mixed drinks have dropped by 30%, sales of straight spirits are up 46%. The meaningful bit of data is that this represents 21 million more standard drinks. Wow, who would have thought that teenagers would find something else to drink? Or even more amazing, when presented with a bottle of bourbon and a bottle of coke, your average punter drinks more in a night than when drinking pre-mixed cans?

The industry body said they expected the sales to shift from pre-mixed to straight, but they didn't expect an increase. I don't know why not. It seemed like the most obvious outcome to me. Do they not remember being teenagers? Could they not see that taking a 6 pack of pre-mix to a party results in less alcohol consumption than a bottle of bourbon? Just how stupid are these people?

Sunday, July 27, 2008

A hint of more good news

When we were making the decision about having a third child, I very seriously considered adopting. I looked into all the NSW laws and regulations and discovered that it was very expensive, had insane eligibility criteria and made me feel like a selfish awful person for wanting to rip a poor child out of her own culture just for privilege of raising her to meet my own selfish needs.

There seemed to be no consideration of the concept that perhaps it might make more sense for us to provide a loving home for a child who has none, regardless of where she was born than to leave her there to be brought up in an institution in poverty of love and material needs in her own culture (at best). I have no doubt that if I needed to leave my kids to be raised by someone else, I would choose a loving family in an alien culture over a poverty stricken institution in Australia. That loving family's motivations might well be selfish, but it still works best for the kids.

I don't understand the massive fuss around adoption. By that, I don't mean it isn't a huge deal to give up a baby, but I don't understand why the unique issues that adopted children face are regarded as huge problems that they should never have to go through. It becomes a self fulfilling prophecy. Adopted children have a genuinely different experience, but the issues don't seem that dramatically different in scale to those experienced by most teenagers. Questions of identity, not fitting in, feeling isolated. Clearly not looking like your family is an obvious cause for angst. As is being fat. Or being short. Or coming from the city when you live in the country. Or vice versa. But adopted children seem to be given the right to feel that angst, whereas everyone else is told it is part of growing up, you'll get over it.

I also don't get why it is expected that adopted children will be angry at their birth mothers for giving them up. Anger at the universe for landing you in a situation where you are not the same as everyone else - that I get. But anger at the woman who either made a very selfless decision to give her child a chance at a better life than she could manage, or was forced into the decision by someone else seems insane and really unfair. There is a portrayal of women who give babies up for adoption as heartless, betraying their infants and denying them their rightful mothers. If there are any such women among those who give up babies, they must be few and far between.

My experience with adoption (through family and friends) doesn't bear out that it is inevitably a huge issue for the kids. It doesn't seem to be too big an ask to recognise the genuine issues and provide help working through them without allowing their adopted status to define them entirely.

And so, back to the news article that started this rant (I wasn't actually intending a rant, but there you go). The federal government has made an agreement with the states to start to sort out international adoption, making it easier and cheaper. I really hope this actually comes about, and isn't just a heap of political speak. Not that I'd ever trade in my Miss Elissa, but I still feel that I didn't quite do the right thing there, that I should have adopted a baby girl.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

If I ran the world...

I would hire local people to contribute the information for a child's smart globe. Apart from getting the facts straight, they might avoid complete non-sequitors.

Some extracts from Ben's globe:

Wellington (NZ) is slightly bigger than Geraldton

Darwin is a little bigger than Coober Pedy

Coober Pedy is about twice as big as Uluru.

Hobart is about two times the size of Wollongong (pronounced with a short o in the first syllable rather than an oo)

Dunedin (pronounced Doonedin)

Oceania is the smallest of Earth's seven continents. In it you will find Australia and New Zealand and many small islands...It is usually hot here all year round...
Well, that's really cleared up my confusion about the size of Wellington... I just don't get explaining a more significant city in terms of a tiny little one. And why does Cooper Pedy rate so much of a mention? And why is it described in terms of a rock?

Friday, July 25, 2008

It was going so well

Crash gets back tomorrow evening. I was doing well. I made it through my first night alone with only a few nightmares and "things that go bump in the night" adrenaline attacks. I survived Wednesday and yesterday was good. This morning I once again got up on time, and nearly had all the lunches done when Ben appeared downstairs.

Him: "I had an accident."

Me: "Where?" (Thinking it is literally years since this kid had an accident)

Him: "In my room." (Looking wretched)

Me: "How much of an accident?" (Thinking small dribble)

Him: "Like a swimming pool."

He wasn't far from the mark. His room is carpeted. Two full sized towels followed by Spray&Wipe and I suspect I will need to organise carpet cleaners in the near future.

The day moved on OK, although all my motivation drowned in that swimming pool. Good thing a got a lot done yesterday. Although I had better keep going with the washing.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

A good day

Today started well. I got up on time. Lunches were made and breakfasts eaten. I even made a coffee. And actually drank it - HOT!

Then I broke one of my absolute, unbreakable rules. I made a threat that I couldn't possibly carry out. When Charlie decided to back up his "I'm not going to Nessa's house" chant by pulling his shoes off, I told him if he didn't sit down and have them put on again, I would take Elissa and Ben and leave him at home by himself. He went inside and said "I'm staying here." It is fair to say I was starting to panic. I told him if he stayed at home there would be no morning tea, no lunch and no-one to look after him. Apparently that was the king hit. He crumbled. I said a silent thanks to whatever gods were listening and got them all in the car.

We were on time, everyone got where they were going and I got heaps of work and housework done. I even got a cup of tea before I had to collect them all again.

Charlie got through the evening with only 3 timeouts. (We are learning about anger management, and it is hard for a 3yr old to control his temper. Unfortunately his impulse is to hit, hence many timeouts.) We finished another Captain Underpants and now I am blogging and watching Bra Boys. It was a good day.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

What the?

Alcopops tax forcing inflation up: Turnbull
I am not an advocate of the "alcopops" tax (and I really hate the term "alcopops"), but seriously, if Malcolm Turnbull is right, we as a nation have one awesome drinking problem.

"One thing the Government could have done was choose to not put up the price of alcohol but it did and it has flowed into the inflation numbers,"

So let me get this straight, oil prices and interest rates (read: food, transport and housing) have nothing to do with inflation, it's the increased cost of spirits?

I thought it was Labor who were supposed to be incompetent at economics...

Hello subconscious, what are you playing at?

Over the last month or two, apart from the normal array of horror flicks and random nonsense, there has been a recurring theme in my dreams. I am not a person who has predictive dreams* (and a good thing too, given how often I get shot dead in them), so this is either a weird statistical anomaly or my subconscious is trying to tell me something. I just can't imagine what.

In an amazing assortment of dreams recently (happy, nightmare, bland, you name it) I have had an extra child. Not another baby, a girl, older than Elissa and definitely not my biological offspring. She is someone I have permanent custody of for reasons unknown.

I'm pretty sure I don't have a latent desire to raise some random child, I definitely don't want four of them. I am baffled.

*With the (possibly coincidental) exception of a single dream in each pregnancy telling me the sex of the baby.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Hey look, good news!

This federal government is not all wine and roses, but they continue to surprise me in making genuine steps towards more open government. I was surprised when Gillard removed the gag on NGOs. I have now been surprised that improvements have been made to the FOI act, despite this government (ab)using the power they have just revoked aerlier this year. They have removed the ministers' power to refuse a FOI request because they believe it not to be in the public interest. This power made a mockery of FOI, and I am very glad to see it gone. Even better, it allows for previous blocks to be removed if applications are re-submitted. Better than expected.

I could rattle off all the things I hate about them, but it is nice to see that some of the political idealism they touted before the election has seen some action after it. I'll take my good news where it comes.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Baby packs

I caught this news clip on Triple J this afternoon.

They say the baby bonus has been extremely damaging in Cape York communities, leading to more teenage pregnancies and men using violence to force partners off contraception and to hand over the bonus.

Instead they propose handing out baby packs containing things like nappies and formula as an incentive for children to have regular health checks.

Just how many ways is this wrong?

From a practical point of view, what do you put in baby packs that equal the value of the baby bonus? What does every baby need? OK, many, many babies use disposable nappies, but not all, and not enough of them to make up the total. Formula? WTF? Fine, if it's required, but lots of people don't need it. There is virtually nothing else that any given child definitely needs. Maybe a $100 worth of bathing products might be handy, especially for people living in remote communities. Not exactly thousands of dollars' worth.

And then if you manage to come up with something that makes any sense at all, how come only black fellas need to be told how to spend the money? Why not extend it to everyone? Of course, it wouldn't have helped me, I am one of those lucky white people who happen to live somewhere that still has private obstetricians, so I spent all of mine on her, and it didn't cover it. But I'm guessing the people referred to above don't have that choice. I guess if they already have most of their choices wiped out, taking away some more won't matter.

And then of course, we come to the real point. It makes me so angry I can barely write coherently about it. We are talking about communities in which many people are disenfranchised, have poor living standards and little hope for a future improvement. Women are even more so. The baby bonus pays women directly, it should be empowering but the power balance is so skewed it is being used against them. So we look at this horrific situation and we say "Bad Baby Bonus" - clearly it is the root of all evil. We don't say "What do we need to do to support these women?". Or even more sensibly "What do these women want us to do?".

I think there are a whole host of ways the money spent on the baby bonus could be better used (doing something about the insane insurance premiums removing private obs from business for one, but I'm guessing there could be plenty of others), but there is nothing to be gained by treating remote indigenous women like children. Truly unbelievable.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Bailey will be wintering on the stairs

The Vines

My sister and I both won tickets to see a Triple J gig at Manning Bar on Wednesday night, which definitely made my week.

The Dukes of Windsor were first up, and I really enjoyed them. Melodic poppy rock. Fun to watch, and nothing in the way of rock star airs. In fact, they look like the chess club started a band. The keyboard player was the only one who actually had a haircut.

Then was The redsunband, who did not rock my world. The sound was terrible. I'm pretty sure the vocalist has a great voice, but it was very hard to hear her. It pretty much sounded like a long, uninteresting drum solo with some added background noise.

And then we got to see The Vines. Legendary for some of the worst live performances ever given. Legendary for having a crazy lead singer. Since the legends began, Craig, the lead singer, has been diagnosed with (I think) Asbergers, and has obviously learned to manage it a little better. But the "creative" personality type was still visible, possibly all part of the show. I'd have been disappointed if there was no crazy, after all he traded on it for several years.

The performance was actually pretty good. Short sharp songs, lots of posturing and ridiculous hairdos. All good. I'd say they are worth a looksee if they don't cost you a bomb, but your dollars are probably better spent on The Dukes of Windsor...

And this grainy picture of The Dukes is definitely leading me in the direction of asking for a pocket sized decent camera for Chrissy...

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

The problem with World Youth Day

...is, well, the youth. Who exactly thought that getting a few hundred thousand teenagers together was a good idea? I had to make my way through gangs of marauding pilgrims today to drop something off to a client at the north end of the city. Buses needed to divert from the closed George St to Elizabeth St. Along with every other vehicle in the city. Oh yeah, and all the pilgrim gangs. I got to listen to them singing songs worthy of the Rugby World Cup crowds - at 11am, along with them thumping the side of the bus and completely ignoring the traffic lights (just to add to the flow of the restricted traffic).

Since I couldn't even work out where to catch the return bus, and the first trip had taken so long, I decided to walk back to the Powerhouse. Perhaps I should have read something about where the action was. There were so many people at Hyde Park, it didn't occur to me that there would be a whole lot more of 'em at Darling Harbour. Singing "Aussie Aussie Aussie, Oi Oi Oi" among other things. All with flags draped over them. Many, many being inconsiderate and annoying. Just like any other group of teenagers.

The other thing that really came home to me is that all these pilgrims are kids - in other words, they have no cash. They are not spending any money here. The state government has stumped up all the cash for this, and it seems improbable that much is going to be put back into the economy. There was nobody in the shops I walked past. For goodness sakes, the Lindt Cafe was EMPTY! Despite them giving away Lindt balls (sadly not to me). When I consider the annual budget of the Catholic Church compared with that of the NSW government, it just seems ludicrous that we are paying for it. I want my money back!

On the bright side, if one wants to rid oneself of pilgrim hordes, there is nothing quite so effective as a building with SCIENCE displayed in large friendly letters. The Powerhouse Museum was divinely devoid of pilgrims. Lots of primary school kids, but trust me, they looked seriously good after my stroll.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Size zero and body image

I finally got around the watching the end of The Truth About Size Zero last night. It followed model Louise Redknapp while she attempted to lose about 2 sizes to fit into a size zero in 30 days. She did it because she was becoming more and more concerned about eating disorders and so on.

Surprise, surprise it found that being a size zero isn't healthy (unless of course you are very short - presumably it is the right size for someone) nor is crash dieting to get there. In fact, the vast majority of it was very dull and predictable - although probably good viewing for 13 year olds who haven't learnt about the horrible monster that most people turn into when they crash diet.

But there was this really interesting bit at the beginning. Louise is, as I said, a model. Apparently a fairly famous one in the UK if you're into that sort of thing. At the beginning she was photographed in a singlet and trackpants for the before shot. She was horrified at what she saw. She thought she looked fat. Going in to the photo shoot she said was happy with her body, thought she looked great. She pointed out that most of the photos she sees of herself have been photoshopped. The tummy is flattened, skin darkened, thighs sculpted - all the usual stuff. The photoshopped version of herself is what her self-image was.

This was not commented on in the show - which I think is a real shame. What hope do any of the rest of us have of seeing reality through photoshopped images if the subjects of those images are fooled? It disgusts me that the media take no responsibility for this. Self-image seems to be incredibly malleable, I'm guessing it is an unusual person whose self-image actually matches reality. Looking at perfected images of people whose full time job is to make themselves look perfect has to impact hugely.

Or maybe we can use this phenomenon to our own advantage - if Louise Redknapp can believe her own press, maybe we all can. Perhaps everyone should fill their own world with photoshopped images of themselves, until you believe it. Who said your body image needed to be accurate?

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Are tie dye and politics compatible?

Some intrepid teacher decided that it would be fun to get 22 kindy and year 1 kids to tie dye t-shirts. In her infinite wisdom, she also decided to do this in winter. Two simple problems - trying to buy a white cotton t-shirt in June, and kid desperate to wear it in July. I found a singlet, and today he managed to get it on.

This shirt is just SO Ben.

So I'm not sure how that will sit with his other main characteristic - built in diplomacy.

While setting the table tonight he was very specific about which of the two glasses was to be mine. When I looked quizzical he explained - "I wanted you to have that glass because you're lighter and Daddy can have that glass because he is stronger."

I wasn't aware there was a significant weight difference in our glasses, but there you go. And what a lovely way of saying I'm a weakling...

Friday, July 11, 2008

I want my mummy

I am coming down with the lurgi, and I want my mummy. Or at least I would, if my mother wasn't the last person on earth you want around when you are ill.

I love my mother, don't get me wrong. I even like her a lot, enjoy her company and all that, but she is a member of the Codral Cult. When presented with illness, one attempts to deny it for as long as humanly possible, and then if that becomes impossible, one Soldiers On. A small amount of whinging is permitted, even obligatory, but Life continues. All of it. No dodging responsibility, no retreating to bed and whimpering.

This had its interesting side effects. She never believed either of us kids when we broke bones. My sister had to wait a minimum of overnight to be taken to hospital for each of her three breaks. My break was only a greenstick fracture, and I was never taken to hospital. It was diagnosed when I was 25.

On the plus side, it probably prepared me well for parenting, because in all reality, hiding in bed and whimpering is probably not going to work. The 8 month old is unlikely to feed and bathe herself and then tuck herself into bed. That could be pushing my independence barrow just a little too far. And the cold and flu tablets I take leave me with a quiet buzz akin to 2 glasses of wine.

But still, my teddy and a book look very attractive...

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Twice in a lifetime

Last night I booked tickets to see Rolf Harris in December. I saw him when I was about 6 or 7, as did Crash, and now Ben will see him 2 days before he turns 6. Charlie has a ticket too, we'll decide whether not that is a good plan closer to the time.

He probably won't sing "Let me abo go loose Bruce" like last time, but he probably will do Stairway to Heaven. Should be fun. Makes last weekend's Fogey Rock look like pups.

The strange attraction of the baby aisle

I send a fruit gel or custard to day care as an afternoon snack for Elissa. They can stay in the bag until next time if they aren't needed, so they are handy. I ran out today, so I needed to restock at the supermarket (along with formula and nappy rash cream).

Why do I get a little rush of joy when I have reason to stand and look in the baby aisle? I look at all the little jars and satchels and the brightly coloured toys and dummies and other accessories and I get a strange sense of bliss. I don't buy any of it, just the stuff I actually went in for. But even when I was pregnant I would stop and look and wonder if I needed anything. It was peaceful.

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Quote of the day

"An internet security expert in the US says he has found a gaping hole in the World Wide Web."

Courtesy of the ABC.

Monday, July 07, 2008

Arrggggg! No clothes does not equal porn

What the hell is wrong with adults? This is just utterly ridiculous. Why are naked photos of small children regarded as sexual? Unless sexual content is actually evident, kids without clothes have nothing to do with pornography, regardless of what the image is used for. As and for this quote
We have seen these sort of cases in the [United] States and elsewhere, where a person in their 30s or their 40s decides that they want to be the President of the United States or they want to be a teacher or anything, they want to take up a public role, and those photos come back to haunt them.
from Joe Tucci from the Australian Childhood Foundation - only a very sick society thinks a naked photo of a six year old can haunt someone in their 30s or 40s. Address the real problem - that adults impose their sexuality on kids - not ban perfectly reasonable nudey shots of kids.

I accept that there is a grey area for kids between the ages of gaining modesty and sixteen, in which there is a question about whether informed consent is plausible, and I can see there is something to be giving informed consent about. I think the "Don't publish until the kid is old enough to consent" theory works well enough here. Sixteen is the obvious age for this line in the sand - clearly if you can bonk, you can decide whether or not people can see you naked. The lower age limit is open to debate, my guess is around 8 or 9 - I am not sure what the average age is, although it seems to me that parents should probably decide this for themselves. Parents should be able to sign a delayed consent document if they feel it is appropriate.

I also object to the concept that parents have no right to consent on their children's behalf. It seems ridiculous to me that parents could have the right to consent to organ transplants for their kids, but not to naked photos. This hysteria about nakedness is insane, and reflects problems in the people who see an issue. I've given up being understanding about the other side of this issue, I think it is dangerous, and contributes to the sexualisation of children, not the other way around.

Ok. Rant over.

Sunday, July 06, 2008

Fogey Rock

Last night a small miracle occurred, Crash and I went to see a concert together. He hates crowds, and isn't a huge music fan, so I mostly go without him. But last night we went to see Ian Moss, Jon Stevens and two other people, one of whom I am going to have to Google to finish this post. We went to the salubrious establishment of Campbelltown RSL.

As a result of Friday, I hadn't put any thought into the logistics of this event beyond baby sitting. So we succumbed to peer pressure and ate at the RSL. The queue to order was 45 minutes long, and this to get plate of deep fried goodness. I ordered tempura barramundi. I'm guessing the cook had once heard the word tempura and thought it would look better on the sign than "Fish and Chips II". As we walked up to the auditorium, Crash said to me "Have I become a snob?". Yes. I am a snob. I don't care how cheap it is or isn't, I don't want to eat god awful RSL food.

The support acts were Jack Jones, from Southern Sons, and who is mostly famous for the world's biggest mullet, and Tania Doko from Bachelor Girl. They seemed awkward, great voices, but little else.

Jon Stevens (of Noiseworks fame) did an acoustic set. Not bad for an old bloke, very entertaining, great voice, but absolutely no atmosphere in an auditorium full of 8 seater tables and 50-something, apparently disinterested people.

Ian Moss did a few Chisel songs, more than last time I saw him, finishing obviously with Bow River. I think his musical style has changed too much, and he kept improvising in a very southern blues kind of way, which truly doesn't go with his older music. Telephone Booth sounded like he was playing 3 songs at once. Choir Girl he mixed up, but the audience carried on regardless. He also got one of the lines wrong. He is an awesome musician, but the show didn't come together. Ironic really, since after he finished he came back on with Jon Stevens and they did a truly great version of Come Together. They finished with Georgia, which was ultimately marred by the consistently shocking efforts of the sound guy.

Noiseworks are doing another tour, and if they play somewhere other than an RSL, I would seriously consider going. It was fun, Jon Stevens loves being on stage, he is there for a good time and hopes the audience comes along for the ride. Ian Moss felt more like he was sharing his musical genius with us.

Next gig is The Herd, for a change of pace. From youngest person to oldest person. And I went to Angus and Julia Stone with Toni a few weeks back. Pretty good, although grouping all the downbeat stuff together was perhaps not the best choice. They are delightful and varied, lovely to lose yourself in. If you see them around, go see them.

Now we are three

Charlie turned three on Friday. We squeezed his party into Friday afternoon.

This is the cake - my orders were for a diamond shaped cake, with strawberries, chocolate with brown icing and cream. The stars were my idea and were a hit. The cream was mock and between the layers. Charlie doesn't actually like cream. The cake itself was a dodgy recipe and suffered as a result, but as predicted, the kids didn't care. I love the fact that my kids ask for the world's easiest cakes.

We had some left over jelly, which I turned into trifle today. Ben told me it was better than chocolate. I'm not sure there is higher praise...

I am still getting over Friday. Our day:

6:15am: Get up, shower, clean bathrooms make lunches for the little ones, just recess for the big one

7am: Get the kids up, feed them breakfast, dress them, pack their bags, get the little ones to day care by 8:30am. Meanwhile, send big kid outside to do pooper scooping. (He likes it, and gets paid for it, everybody wins!).

8:30am: While I drop little kids off, Crash begins the BBQing of 130 sausages. We are helping with Special Lunch for the 64 kids at Ben's school. They have no canteen, so once a term the P&C puts on a special lunch. This one was sausages in buns, oranges and jelly.

8:35am: It begins to pour with rain

9:15am: Drive big kid to school due to the rain, throw him out of car, don't go to morning lines.

9:20am: Start mopping, vacuuming and dusting. He is still BBQing

9:50am: Take the first load of sausages to another mum's house and help cut up oranges and bread rolls.

10:20am: Go back for the second load of sausages, and then put them in the rolls.

11:15am: Go to school for the serving of Special Lunch at 11:30am

11:32am: It starts to pour with rain again - about 2 minutes after we set up outside.

11:35am - 12:15pm: Serve Special Lunch to 64 kids in the weather shed - an area marginally larger than our dining room.

12:15pm: Come home desperate for a stiff drink, instead, make mock cream (twice, because I dropped the hot water in to the first batch and it separated). Make icing. Decorate cake. Finish all the cleaning and party prep.

2:40pm: Drive to Castle Hill to pick up party guests, since I chose to schedule this party for a time when their parents couldn't possibly get them here. The drive up is by far the calmest part of the day.

4pm: Crash goes to get our three kids, little ones first.

4:30pm ish: Party starts.

6:45pm ish: Kids are bundled into the bath and I start dinner for 9 adults. Steam boat - I only have to chop and peel, and I have assistance.

Later: Everyone goes home and I crash into bed.

Now I signed up for all of this, I don't regret it, and I wasn't actually pushed for time. It all fitted into the time allotted. But it was full on, and the sheer level of excitement in every child I came into contact with was so exhausting. What a day. But Charlie had the best time, and I thoroughly enjoyed the dinner.