Apologies for the delay in writing. Time is somewhat fluid at the moment, so I have no idea what date – or indeed, day of the week, or time of day – it is, but I know it’s not Christmas Eve, because I’ve already
endured enjoyed that.
First off, thank you for the gifts for the children. How did you know that that was exactly what I would have given them too? Mind you, we both got it a bit wrong. I’m sure the scooters will, one day, be a big hit – when the incessant rain stops for more than 5 minutes, and I can actually get them outside the house and away from the walls we have all been climbing since mid-November. And yes, I know the Boy banged ON AND ON AND ON about getting a robot, so it’s totally not your fault that he hasn’t played with it since the cursory glance it got on Christmas morning; even the Girl chucking the controller into the bath this evening didn’t bother him. Those things generally sell for quite alot of money, so I really hope you and the elves made it and didn’t buy it. Equally non-impressive have been the dinosaur “snap” cards (anyone would think you just bought them willy-nilly off the internet) and the stack of books (which looked like they came from a charity sho... oh.) The “Drinking Straw Glasses” which no doubt looked so impressive on Amazon were a pile of cack; you probably thought they’d actually work, given that here in England they cost £6, but no, the apple juice just came squirting out in all directions, giving me more scrubbing to do. Thanks for that. Those bed-socks were fairly hideous – what were you thinking? – so of course they have both been wearing them non-stop. And maybe next year, ixnay on the large bar of Toblerone-ay? Neither kid needs a sugar-spike at 6am. The Girl’s gimmicky lap-top thing is also generally largely ignored – until the Boy trips over it, gets a bit interested, and opens it up, at which point a fist-fight breaks out. You really should have seen that coming.
On the plus side, both the kids love the wall-stickers – how clever to get something which I was just going to buy anyway! Again, you weren’t to know that the Girl now takes several hours to fall asleep at night, what with the night-nights to every single one of the 42 animal stickers on her wall, and the later crazed ripping of said stickers off the wall and onto her head. The DVDs also went down well – or at least I can only assume they did, as they’ve been watched more or less non-stop since the rains began. (Perhaps next year you can avoid any with rappish songs at the end? A 2 year old singing “I like to move it MOVE IT!” at the top of her lungs in Sainsbury’s makes her mummy a bit embarrassed.)
One final word on the gifts – if it makes a noise, it probably needs batteries. Bear that in mind next time, ok?
Back to ME. Seeing as you forgot to visit me (AGAIN), I thought I’d try my luck in setting my gift list out in writing to you.
Firstly, asking for something you really need, as opposed to want, is dull, I know, but make an allowance this once. I – we – need some sleep. Not the piddly 3 hours here and there we’ve been getting since the start of the month; oh no – a whole SIX hours in one go please. (If you’re feeling really generous, we’d also quite like to wake up next to each other after that marathon stretch. But that’s not a deal-breaker.) I know this is a tricky gift, with many moving parts; it requires the Grubette to have not done her usual Eat, Cough, Vomit routine just before she gets put to bed, AND have parents diligent in keeping her awake and stimulated during the day; it demands a Boy free from cough and lurgy, and a Girl who doesn’t wake up ad hoc in the early hours and start singing nursery rhymes. It also requires the night-time lighting in the hall-way to be just right for the sensibilities of a 4 year old – these change from day to day – and adequate toast and milk to be scoffed just before bed. These quantities are also highly changeable. Finally, I’m sure it necessitates tee-total parents who don’t binge-drink in the short hour and a half after bedtime when all the children are asleep at the same time; we both know this is the most unlikely part to put into place, and so I’ll understand if this gift is just unfeasible.
Secondly – and finally, this is a short list – we have an au pair arriving next week. (I know! Staff! It’s like Downton Abbey, only on an infinitesimally smaller scale). Please can you make sure she’s:
- Hot and nice (so the Man has an adult female in the house who doesn’t look like she was just found, after several months, down the back of the sofa, and who doesn’t snarl)
- Lithe and skinny (less likely to eat me out of house and home); and
- Not just another lazy, sullen, ungrateful child to look after.
Thank you. I appreciate that you’re probably completely wrecked now, what with having spent the past few months
sitting on your arse while your wife chose, bought and wrapped sorting all the presents for the world’s children,
but just a smidgen of your time would be greatly appreciated.
The Reluctant, Exhausted, Snappy Launderer.