Time to take a break from marital ranting this week, and use this blog to record some more memories of the girls childhood - they keep doing things that I think, "I must remember that for later" and then prompty forget, so it's about time I recorded a few of them for prosperity. That way, when I am old and my brain is addled, the girls can at least read them out to me between spoonfuls of mashed banana in the nursing home.
First up: Mushpod and mashcrumble. These are Amelies special 'recipes' - she spends a lot of time standing on her little chair in the kitchen 'helping' her mother bake cakes (I say helping, but that's probably the least accurate way to describe her involvement) and clearly loves it, and as a result she often likes to play 'cooking' on her own. She only has the two dishes that she makes - mushpod and mashcrumble - and they are very hard to tell apart. They are also an acquired taste.
I don't want to spoil any of her trade secrets, but as far as I can tell, both recipes are as a follows: get as many handfuls of plastic junk you can (any junk, doesn't matter), put it into a container (any container, it still doesn't matter) and stir it with something (anything, once again it doesn't matter). Then pour it into other, smaller containers (again, what you use here is just not an issue) and serve to your family - ideally with a phrase that confuses the hell out of them when they first hear it, like "Daddy, here's that mushpod you wanted".
Then stand back and actually expect them to eat it.
Pretending to eat it is no good. "Saving it for a cup of tea" is no good. "Not wanting to spoil your dinner" is no good. You will physically put this mushpod, that I have carefully made you, into your mouth, and appear to enjoy it - or there will be tears, and it will end with Mummy giving you one of those looks.
I have included a photograph, above, of my breakfast portion of mushpod from this morning. You can see I was lucky today; a quick analysis shows that it contains a peg, some ribbons, a plastic snail, 2 plastic fish, a yellow plastic stick that is (for reasons not immediately apparent to me) known as a 'whizzywhizz', and the inevitable Hello Kitty! figurine. Now, that's a fresh and exciting fusion of ingredients...
By the way, the sole, critical difference between mushpod and mashcrumble is apparently in who gets to eat it. Mushpod is "for people and toys", whereas mashcrumble is "only for pigs". This is handy, because (if you ever have pigs round for dinner, and have failed to think about catering seperately for them) you can make both mushpod and mashcrumble at once, in the same pot - which will please everyone, and save on the washing-up.
Neve, meanwhile, is the Guineapig of Dawn.
She has started in the last few week to occasionally 'sleep through' - if sleeping from 11pm until 5am can be called that. But once she's awake, she pretty much awake for good, unless Nini brings her into our bed and cuddles her. This does mean that twice now I have had dreams where I am trapped in a cave by a giant red squeaking guinea pig that claws at my face - only to awake in a panic, to find myself trapped under a duvet, with a small redhaired child, squeaking like a guinea pig, clawing my face.
It can takes a few minutes to realise that I have actually woken up, and on one occasion her fingernails/claws broke the flesh of my cheek, leaving me with a duelling scar like Action man for a few days. I'm sure, in fact, that that's pretty much how Action man really got his scar.
The second time around I dreamt the guineapig had a dummy in its mouth, which was even more disconcerting when I woke up...