Friday, 31 January 2014

Dad Dancing...

So this morning I woke up as usual and went downstairs to make my first cup of tea before getting the kids up and ready for school.

Of course, I turned on the radio to hear Michael Jackson's 'Bad' blasting out. I was immediately transported back to my own youth, standing in my bedroom practising the latest 'moves' by the King of Pop himself - I was the white MJ - I knew it - just no-one else did!

So this morning I decided to see if I still remembered all those moves and clad in my dressing gown and slippers I began moonalking, crotch grabbing and screaming whilst holding my hand out to ctahc a frisbee (at least that's how I remembered it).

I was halfway through this incredible routine when I spun (clutching my unseen hat) and turned to see two small boys standing in the doorway with their mouths open - simply stunned.

I quickly straightened up and asked the boys what they wanted for breakfast - as if nothing had happened. And they carried on as if nothing had happened. They obviously needed to block this from out of their minds.

It obviously  doesn't matter if you are gay or straight - Dad dancing is just bad!!!!!!

Today is Chinese New Year and the boys are very excited - rather than greet Papa this morning with oranges and a cheery 'Gong Xi Fa Cai' (he had to go to work as normal) so they are practising to do it tonight when he comes home from work. TJ is particularly keen as he wants his red packet (or ang pow) from Papa - he has already stipulated that it must be full of paper money as he is not accepting coins!

TJ then asked if he should do his Chinese New Year greeting for his teacher and see if she will give him any money.

"I dont think she celebrates Chinese New Year," I told him.

"Why not?" he asked.

"Because she's not Chinese," I explained.

"You're not either and we still celebrate,"

"I know, but Papa is so we respect his celebration - and its fun."

"I'm half Chinese," TJ went on.. and then he suddenly stopped. "No I'm not," he cried," I'm half Singaporean - which means Papa isnt Chinese either!"

"He's Chinese Singaporean," I started to explain but then realised that maybe 8.30am wasn't the time to begin a conversation about race and nationality... so I just left it and said we would talk about it later.

I think as long as he gets his red packet he will be happy.

Tuesday, 28 January 2014

Celebrating Cultures

It was only this morning that I realised just how much the children wanted, no needed, to go to Singapore for Chinese New Year.

This sounds like its going to be a long whinge about the state of the current education system and the way in which children are simply not allowed to take holidays in term time. Full stop. Period. No asking for special treatment, no chance for the headteacher to apporve necessary trips away - nothing. Oh except exceptional circumstances - a death in the family would suffice I guess. But I'll save that for another whinge - there are plenty of people out there moaning about it already.

No, this is about how our not being able to go has had such a surprising effect on the kids... and I hadn't seen it!

Yesterday, as we can't go for Chinese New Year, the boys and I decided to pull out the CNY decorations and put them up in the dining room for Papa. TJ loved it. He wanted to hear the story about the animals and how they became the astrological symbols. He wanted Papa to explain all about the different symbols and items we put up for prosperity, longevity etc etc.

Then that evening I found him in his room crying his eyes out. TJ doesn't cry - not ever and definately not in front of people. He used to. He used to cry over everything, not being able to tie his shoelace, his jumper being inside out - all were major catastrophes. Then he just stopped. We went to therapy but he simply built more defences, so we stopped going, we didn't want to re-traumatise him - I know there are lots of possible reasons, the one I am favouring is that he doesn't want to show weakness, which could also be a peer group thing as well - boys of a certain age suddenly seems to want to be men, with their own interpretation of what being male means.

Anyway, he was distraught. He wouldn't talk about it - but he would let me hold him whilst he cried. Its strange to say that I actually loved having him in my arms, sobbing into my shoulder - its such a rare occurence.

This morning it all came out. He wanted to see his Grandparents, he wanted to see his Aunty and Uncle, he wanted to see his cousins, he wanted to see his Godparents and all of our friends. For the past two years, since the boys came to us, every CNY we have gone to Singapore and celebrated with family and friends. And I hadn't realised how much that meant to him.

I now felt as if I was denying him a festival as big as Christmas - thats the only way I can describe it. He had tried so hard to fit in, to meet his new family, to get used to our 'ways' and now he was settled and looking forward to it I was cancelling it - or rather school were.

The Government had cancelled Christmas.

I suppose that because the boys are (to use ethnical descriptions) white British, its very hard for people to get their head around the fact that they are also half Singaporean. The boys have had no trouble getting used to it. They know that Papa's family  are in Singapore, they know my family are here. That's their lives. They don't see race, they don't see cultural difference, they see Daddy and Papa - they see their family.

Its an argument I am going to push harder next year - even if i end up talking to our MP or Mr Gove about this - its not fair and I'm sure my children aren't the only ones being punished because some people misuse the system.

Our children were adopted into a mixed race family and the minute that happened they took on both of our cultures and both need to be celebrated and accepted by everyone around them - including me!


Its funny but after reading this I was suddenly reminded of a play I did with the fabulous Chua Enlai, directed by the equally fabulous Krishen Jit - it was David Henry Hwang's 'Looking for Chinatown' about a white guy who has been adopted by Chinese parents and is essentially more 'Chinese' than the Chinese guy he bumps into (played by Enlai). The piece was seen as almost ridiculous but thought provoking - indeed I think that Francine in the TV show 'American Dad' is also adopted by a Chinese family - why is this seen as comedic? Plenty of Chinese kids are adopted into white families - so why is it the other way round seems so strange? Am I asking my kids to live a life previously restricted to the theatre and comedy shows?

Friday, 24 January 2014

Papa's Big Day

Yesterday was Papa's birthday.

And, as every year, he took the day off work. Papa has a very stressful job so the boys and I had planned a nice breakfast followed by them going to school and then Papa and I having a nice lunch together and then taking the boys out for burgers (a treat) in the evening before KC has his drama lesson - with the impossibly cheerful drama teacher.

However, things are really stressful at work for Papa at the moment so he threw a spanner into our carefully planned morning by announcing that he wanted to get some work finished so he could enjoy the rest of the day.

The boys were a bit disappointed but I told them we could give presents and cards later when Papa had his cake (which I hadn't actually made yet). So KC went and gave Papa a hug and kiss and wished him Happy Birthday by performing a birthday dance he had been practising (it was very sweet). Then he went off to school.

TJ then decided that he wanted to wish Papa a happy birthday - so he went into the sitting room where Papa was working and saw that the lamp was on - TJ knows that Papa hates wasting electricity so he duly switched the lamp off at the main switch by the wall.

It was then that I saw the colour drain out of Papa's face as he stared at his laptop... TJ had turned off the internet router... Papa whispered, "I've lost eveything" as TJ cried, "Happy Birthday!!!!!" and jumped onto Papa's head.

Papa was now turning a shade of crimson so I decided that it might be best if TJ and I went to school early. TJ took the hint and we were at school before the gates even opened. Then I took the dog for a long, long walk before going home to see if Papa was ok - and had managed to finish off the rest of his work.

I came back and Papa decided we were going out and as it was his day he didn't want to do any of the things I had planned... like looking for a new family car (boring) or going to Ikea (also dull) - I know it not exactly birthday mayhem but how often do I have Papa to myself without the kids? - and taking the boys to either of those places is hell - last time we went to a car showroom KC set off loads of car alarms - he was trying all the car doors to see if he could sit behind the wheel - even the ones of cars that were not for sale. And Ikea - well, that's a nightmare - TJ climbed into a cupboard once to see if he could find Narnia (I blame my Mum for letting them watch the movies). It took us ages to find him and when we did he popped out shouting 'But I've only been gone a few seconds!..... much to the 'delight' of the store staff.

Still, it was Papa's day so we did what he loves - we went shopping for clothes! Clothes for him - not baby gap, or kiddy Next, or Junior John Lewis - No, proper grown up stores where people talk to you and not to your children. Proper stores where you get time to try on clothes without little boys shouting that they are bored or pulling the arms off a mannequin... that's happened...

For just one afternoon we were proper adults again - shopping, lunching and going to the toilet without having little ones running behind you playing with hand dryers whilst you try to 'go'...

Being a parent means you never take the little things in life for granted...

But it was lovely to go out as a family that evening and just eat junk food and then watch Papa blow out the candles on the enormous banana and walnut cake I made for him... its his favourite!

Wednesday, 22 January 2014

The Wrong Kind of Ham...

So I have been called into school. Apparently, I have been forcing my child to eat food that he hates - in this case ham.

Now, TJ loves ham - it's pretty much the only meat he will eat - he is a vegetarian otherwise, loves his salad and vegetables - I'm not complaining about that but as TJ 'sees the world differently' then he also insists on having the same lunch on a daily basis. We have set up the routine for him and he sticks to it. So I was quite surprised when I was informed that TJ had decided to have a huge temper tantrum in the middle of the school dining hall and in a fit of rage throw his half eaten ham sandwich at the dinner lady - who at the time was trying to coax him into eating it.


So the dinner lady 'told on him' - his words not mine - and I was duly called in.

I thought they would be telling me how they would be disciplining TJ, what consequences he would have for being so unruly and downright rude... Nope. They were bringing me in to ask that I only give him food that he likes as they need to ensure that he eats an adequate lunch.


I told them that if he doesn't eat his lunch that I lovingly prepare for him (complete with little notes saying how I am thinking of him - as the books tell us to) then he can go hungry - after all he gets home a little after 3 and has a snack then - a couple of hours won't kill him and maybe, just maybe, he'll think twice before throwing good food away. (I'm very traditional when it comes to wasting good food).

They asked me what he did like - I said chocolate spread and peanut butter - together - 'Well he can't have that in school - that's not nutritious" said the food police, "and we dont have peanuts in school in case another child has an allergy and sits near him." Hang on a minute - I just saw another kid munching a bloody Snickers bar in the playground!!!!

"The other thing he likes is ham,' I went on. This was met with a stony silence. So TJ was brought in. He looked at me sheepishly.

"Can you tell Daddy why you threw the sandwich at the lady?" asked the food police.
"I didn't like it." came the reply.
"But ham is your favourite," I said.
"Yes, but its the wrong kind of ham," he replied.

I had now heard everything.

"The wrong kind of ham? Can you explain that?" I asked - my tone was probably sounding a little harsh by now.

"Well,' (you always know you are going to get a long winded, roundabout answer when TJ starts with 'well.')

"Well, I like the ham with lions on the packet (the one sold in support of the armed forces that I think I have bought twice before, I'm pretty sure if any of the armed forces ate it they would return it as its mainly water and tastes foul) and this one didn't have lions on the packet." TJ told us.

There was a knowing nod from the food police. "So you didn't like the taste of this type of ham,' she said. I think my mouth may have fallen open and she bought this excuse hook, line and sinker. "Why didn't you like the taste," she went on.

"The taste was ok," TJ replied, "It just didn't have three lions on the packet."

I breathed in and counted - I didn't get as far as ten.

"TJ," I said (using that tone that all parents seem to develop - I've no idea where it came from), "TJ, can I just ask - where were your friends whilst you were eating?" TJ is a noticeably slow eater - its part of his syndrome.

"Oh they all ran outside to play football - but Miss said I had to eat my lunch first," came the reply. He then froze realising that just maybe he had given the game away.

"Right," I said, "So I have come into school because you would rather throw your lunch at the dinner lady and then cry because I gave you the wrong ham - all because you wanted to go out and play."

He nodded slowly.

"Ok," I said, "Well, I won't give you ham tomorrow  we can look at what else you can have tonight but you can go swimming with school and I'll see you afterwards - is that ok?"

He nodded.

The teacher smiled and all was well.


A little later I went to collect him from school. "TJ didn't go swimming today," said the teacher - the same one as before, "He told us that you didn't pack his swimming trunks."


"Yes, I did,"I replied indignantly, "I packed them with his towel last night."

I was now obviously the worst parent in the world - not only did I force feed my child processed meat products but I expected him to swim naked - I knew what she was thinking - perhaps we were a strange gay naturist family. At that point in time I was so cross that I nearly said that we were...

I looked down at our youngest son.

"I asked you to check your bag this morning, did you?"

"Yes," he said, "Only I took my trunks out."

The swimming police teacher nodded knowingly (which made me want to punch her - I didn't - I just smiled)

"Why?" I asked simply.

"I didn't want to wear my blue ones," he replied.

I was about to say something when I realised that he only has blue ones.

I knew this argument was going nowhere so I simply smiled. took his hand and said, "Come on lets go home."

He smiled back and said, "Daddy, can I have ham sandwiches for tea."

I nearly threw them at him!

Monday, 20 January 2014

Post Adoption Blues?

Every now and again I feel the need to share something that leans toward the more serious side of adoptive life.

After my piece on being a stay at home dad I was surprised by how many people, both Mums and Dads, wrote to me expressing their own thoughts - most felt the same and were happy that the issue was being raised.

But one of the things about being a stay at home parent - or having stay at home parenting thrust upon you is the sudden negatvitiy that fills your life.

I don't think I was suffering from post adoption depression - maybe I was - its more common than a lot of people think but its a condition that many adopters (and I'm sure birth parents) feel incredibly guilty for feeling.

We spent over two years in the adoption process - fighting homophobia, running aroun the country following leads about possible children only to have doors slammed in our faces. When we eventually found our two boys we were elated - but then we spent 18months fighting for the funding and the rights that these two horribly abused little boys deserved.

Finally, after nearly four years we got our adoption order and we became a family. Then the real problems started - as the boys settled so it became apparent that I couldn't work and I had to stay at home - I could never earn the sort of money Papa could, so my career actually took a back burner purely because of the financial rewards.

So now I found myself at home spending each day waiting for the phone call telling me that I needed to go into school, for whatever reason, or simply waiting for the boys to come home.

If I wasn't called into school then it was considered to be a successful day - so a successful day was one where I wasn't required... That doesn't fill you with a great sense of self.

There are days when I would sit looking out of the window wondering why we had done this. Papa was now stressed as his was the only income, I was losing my sense of self and the boys were trying to discover who these strangers were that they now called their parents and how they fitted into our lives. We had to move home as the boys needs were too great for out little house - thats stressful in itself...

I felt I was losing everything - I'd lost the house I'd loved and made into a home, I was losing my relationship, I wasn't being this amazing 'super' parent that the TV programmes and self help books get us to strive for. I was disappearing into a vat of homework, fish fingers and bedtime stories. Papa is rarely home before the boys are in bed so as soon as he got through the door he would go upstairs to do his goodnight routine whilst I cooked his dinner - from 4.30 till 8pm each week night I am cooking... luckily I like cooking and decided to use this as a way of maintaining my sanity.

Then it was a bit of TV - I watch that whilst Papa finishes off whatever work he still has to do and then its bed - exhausted we crash and then up at 6.30 to begin it all again.

I couldn't tell anyone how I felt - after all as soon as you start to complain people are quick to point out that you chose to adopt, you chose this lifestyle - you chose this... and thats when you start to feel guilty.

Yes you did choose this - in fact you fought for it - but once the dust settles you realise that the choices you made didn't give the results you expected. I didn't choose those...

Life does that...

So I punished myself for feeling sorry for myself and in turn I punished my family - not physically but mentally - I was so angry for so much of the time. Angry at everyone else but myself... and that anger got in the way of our bonding as a family.

I learned to channel that anger - into my writing I hope - but its only now that I can admit that I was actually angry at all... I don't like who I became but I hope that I will learn to love my new role and learn to love the person I will become... a good father and husband... and maybe a better writer!

Friday, 17 January 2014

Stay at Home...

It sounds like a dream come true I'm sure - the idea of being a stay at home parent - especially a stay at home Dad.. but believe me the novelty wears off very quickly...

It's taken me a while to admit to this but I actually don't really like being a stay at home Dad - or I didn't. I've learned to like it and to accept my role in the family but that took a while.

I'll go back to the beginning...

When we first decided to adopt the idea was that I would work from home, I ran a successful branch of a large arts education company with 14 employees. I would therefore, take more of a managerial role and only have to work during the school term time and primarily during school hours. It all seemed like an ideal plan. The social workers liked it, I liked it, Papa liked it - everyone liked it... unfortunately no-one told the kids that they should like it too.

Our boys came to us from a very traumatised background, as most children from the care system do, but they needed someone constantly, they needed me in school when things went wrong, they needed me for therapy trips, they needed me for hospital trips, they needed me when school got too upsetting for them or when they were simply having a bad day where they found coping with a new family difficult.

It soon became apparent that I simply couldn't work anymore. My business was slowly falling apart, employees were leaving to set up by themselves and I decided to sell up whilst there was still a viable business to sell.

So I did...

Then I became a stay at home Dad...

And stayed at home...

Papa wasn't happy as he felt he was the one left to pick up all the bills - he is paying for everything now and getting little in return - at one time there was nothing but stress from everyone and I could see why he didn't think this was a pretty good deal.

I was stressed because I no longer had a purpose. I was now completely beholden to Papa for everything - I couldn't even go for a coffee without asking for money.

The kids were stressed as they were dealing with their past trauma, settling in, a new family - so much for two little boys...

But we got through it.

I came to the realisation the other day that this is my role for now. Writing has helped, blogging has helped, getting the book together has helped and now its a new year and I have to stop punishing myself for being a stay at home Dad.

I miss adult conversation that isn't about children.

When Papa comes home we sit and chat and then he will say "Do we have to talk about the kids!" and I sit there and think, "Well I've got nothing else to talk about really..." But at least we then have a quiet meal...

But thats ok - I can listen to his day and be jealous of his adult life because I know one day I will get my 'adult' life back - so I shall enjoy my children, my partner and yes... enjoy the life I have now.

Thursday, 16 January 2014

'Finding Mum and Dad'

Today's blog was supposed to be about the psychological challenges of being a stay at home parent - the feeling of losing self and, most importantly, self worth - it was one of the reasons I started writing again but also something I am only just coming to terms with. If you asked me what I 'did for a living' - I very rarely admit to being a stay at home Dad... but I think that will have to wait until tomorrow, or later today if I can get the washing and the shopping done before lunch.

Instead I am going to write about a show that was on British TV (Channel 4) last night. Called 'Finding Mum and Dad'. It focussed on the new 'adoption parties' that the British Association for Adoption and Fostering (BAAF) are running to encourage more approved adopters to consider taking on 'Hard to Place' children. These are usually sibling groups or children aged over 4, primarily boys who are traditionally harder to place than girls. Once a child hits 7 they are considered 'unadoptable' and the state stops looking for adoptive placements for them and instead puts them into long term foster care. So for any child aged between 4 and 7, this is a crucial time whereby their futures will be decided. If they are in a sibling group with younger brothers or sisters then by 6 the decision is usually made to place the older child into long term care and continue looking for adopters for the younger child(ren). Of course, this is a generalisation and I'm sure their are some social workers that will fight tooth and nail to find adopters for their older children but the reality is, as the show said, its a buyers market and adopters can pretty much pick and choose with those children who are not 'chosen' being put back into the care system.

What I was stunned by though, as this was billed as a BAAF programme, was the title - 'Finding Mum and Dad' - and throughout the show there was constant referrals to finding these children 'a new mummy and daddy'. The would be adopters they focussed on were heterosexuals and the children were all told they could possibly be meeting their new mummy and daddy.

In my opinion, I think the main reason that the government are pushing to recruit more lesbian and gay adopters and single adopters - all of whom were alienated by this programme - is that they, as a group, are far more likely to consider a 'harder to place' child than a heterosexual couple would be, who are more likely to be looking for a baby. Indeed nearly all the gay couples I know who have adopted have all adopted sibling groups of boys, ourselves included.

I heard from the boys' old foster carer today who said the programme moved her to tears - mainly because the two boys featured were so similar to our two and their situation was exactly the same - indeed I think many of the conversations that were filmed between the foster mum and the older boy were similar to conversations she had with KC when he learned he was to be adopted and removed from her.

Her opinion was that the adoption parties took on the form of a cattle market, where the children were paraded in front of would be adopters who then got to choose those they would like to play with and know more about. There was a couple who were interested in the two boys the show featured but decided against it as they met another child instead. That's wonderful for the other child but for the two boys it must have been horrendous - they are taken to party, given a long chat about finding a new family and then come home after being rejected. Of course the boys weren't told the people they had been playing with didn't want them but as any parent of an adopted child will tell you, our kids are far more aware of change in mood and know immediately when they are being talked about.

So I have mixed feelings about adoption parties. If Papa and I do look for a third then maybe we would attend one but I imagine I would find it a bit over whelming and just want to take all the children home - I can't imagine playing with lots of different children with the idea that I might take one of them but not the other.

Ok, with the old system we only learned about our children through their paperwork and a DVD but that meant that we had very few pre-conceptions about them before we met them - yes there were problems but they were problems we had to deal with. Had we met them at an adoption party and watched KC flying around the room bashing people with a toy sword then there is no way we would have taken him on. TJ would have been very different, probably sitting in a corner quietly, making him immediately adorable and ensuring that we would have enquired about him but they would have had to split the boys up to get anyone to take him.

For over 40 children families were found - but what about the 200 plus who didn't get a family but were taken to the party anyway.

I know we need more adopters and we need them to take older children but adoption parties... I'm not so sure....

Tuesday, 14 January 2014

Broccoli and Anniversaries

Today is quite a strange one for us.

It marks the anniversary of my Dad's birthday - he would have been 67 today, but it also marks the day that the boys were first told about us. The social worker came to their foster home and passed over a DVD and book that Papa and I had created for the boys to look at. They had the weekend to watch and read about us until we met them on the Monday.

I thought this was a bit short at the time but was assured that if they left it longer then excitement would turn to anxiety. That is something we watch out for everyday, that turning point when excitement, be it holidays or Christmas or birthdays, can turn into anxiety.

However, our comedy boys are back on form this week....

Last night as I sat them down to a nutritious meal of fish fingers and chips with broccoli I was met with a moan from TJ - "I don't have as many chips as KC," he said, so, following a similar plan that my Mum used, I took one of TJ's chips, ate it and said, "Now see how many more chips than you KC has."

TJ immediately sulked and turned away. Whilst his head was turned I took another chip. He wasn't happy but then he went back to eating - ensuring I didn't take any more.

A little later I did one of my Dad's old tricks (I'm sure all Dad's do this) "Look over there."I said to TJ and as he turned I took a chip. 'Hey!" TJ shouted, "That's not fair."

By now all KC had left on his plate was his 'beloved' vegetables, "Can you do the same to me?" he asked, "I'll turn away and you can steal my broccoli!"

That is not going to happen.

Adoption is a continually evolving experience but is one I wouldn't change for anything - I only wish my Dad could have been here to share it...

Friday, 10 January 2014

Life Stories...

Well, after the debacle earlier this week both boys are now back at school and loving it.

Interstingly, this was the week that our younger son TJ, decided that he wanted to look at his life story book with me. KC won't even acknowledge it but TJ loves it.

The life story book is given to the children by their social worker once they have been adopted. We are lucky, ours is very comprehensive and its well written in a child friendly way - It also has quite a lot of photos from the birth family - photos that TJ loves to look at. He doesn't want to see the pictures of his birth mum or his birth dad - he just wants to look at pictures of himself as a baby.

But where normally thats all he wants to look at yesterday he decided he wanted to read on - to the bits where 'the bad things happened.'

The book is structured in such a way as it goes from TJ's current life with Daddy and Papa, back to his birth history, then through the 'bad things', onto his foster carer's and then back to his adoptive family and our future together.

We usually skip the 'bad things' simply because he wasn't able to understand it, nor did he want to acknowledge it. But yesterday was different.

He sat snuggled up to me as we read it slowly and carefully together, allowing him to stop and ask questions about what things meant.

The most interesting thing was not his reaction, which was inquisitive and curious as to why people wanted to hurt him and his brother but my own reaction. I had to stop reading as I was having trouble. I didn't want him to see my crying and getting upset - after all its not my story, but at the same time it was good for him to see that I was genuinely upset by what I was reading. It was all stuff I knew - but now I was sharing it with the person it had happened to. It was like reading one of those 'misery' books that dot the shelves of WHSmith but with the author sat next to you - the author as a child. The author who until recently believed that all Mum's and Dad's were mean to their children.

I was obviously emotional and TJ suddenly stopped and said to me, "Why are you crying, it didn't happen to you?"

I looked at him and said, "But I wish I had been there so I could have stopped the bad things from happening to you."

Tj looked back, shrugged and threw back up his defences, "They didn't happen to me," he said, "They happened to KC. Besides," he went on, "I look like a monkey so they didn't want me."

It's strange to think that not being abused is seen as a negative - TJ was so young when he was watching his brother being abused that in his eyes he was being ignored by his parents who weren't beating him - for a child any form of recognition is a form of attention and all children want from their parents is attention and time - the rest is just fluff.

So I promised him that he would always have my attention and my time - not out loud, of course, but internally. TJ then went on to look at his baby pictures and laugh at how ugly he was.

That just upset me even more - how can I help him rebuild his shattered self esteem. His godfather recently pointed out that TJ constantly refers to himself as 'rubbish' and only sees KC in a postive light... My guess is it stems back to these early experiences... where KC was getting all the 'attention.'

Monday, 6 January 2014

New Year - Old Dad!

Well, its seems ages since I last posted anything - I think Christmas took over. Then we had no power over the festive season so we took off to see Granny and used her power instead.

But today saw the boys going back to school - and they were keen to go.

The Sprog (who has decided he is too old to be called a Sprog and would prefer to be known as KC - how many more name changes?) was so excited that he went to bed early last night.

He has to get up pretty early in order to catch his school bus and sure enough he was up on time this morning. His brother (who still wants to remain as TJ) has to come with us in the car - although often he is in his pyjamas as he has to be dragged out of bed. But this morning, he too was up bright and early - we are lucky to be able to walk to TJ's school which saves a lot of hassle.

Anyway, we braved the wind and the rain and set off for the bus stop in the car. We arrived on time and waited in the local pub's car park - a strange place for a school pick up point, but there you go.

We waited for ten minutes but still no sign of the bus.

'Maybe we missed it," TJ offered.

"Maybe its late as everyone has so much stuff to carry," I replied looking at the piles of bags that KC had with him.

"Maybe the driver is sick." said KC (it will take a while to get used to that)

Luckily I had the driver's number in my phone. Unluckily my phone was on the kitchen table. Papa always moans that I never have my mobile on me - 'What's the point of having it if you only use it at home!" he cries...

We waited until nearly 8am when I decided that we had to get back to get TJ to school. So I turned around and came home. We would take KC to school after TJ was safely in - I would go in and explain to the teacher why KC was late and give the driver a piece of my mind.

I then decided to call the driver - I rang his number and it was picked up by an obviously bleary man. 'Where are you?" I asked.

"I'm in bed," he replied sleepily.

I was mortified. "I'm so sorry," I said, "Are you ill?"

'No," he replied, "But its the last day of my holiday so I'm having a lie in."

Right...  I didn't give my name as I put the phone down and looked at the school's newsletter.

There it was in black and white, KC doesn't go back to school until tomorrow.

TJ was now no longer happy about having to go to school... he moaned all the way there.

Still KC was happy and at least the Driver didn't know it was me, until KC remined me that he had a list of all the parents numbers and my number probably came up on his phone.

Oh well, I shall be apologising tomorrow and I'm sure we'll all laugh about it in years to come!

KC, seeing I was a bit upset by the events said, "Don't worry Daddy, you didn't make a mistake - we just had a rehearsal for tomorrow."

Now that's positive thinking!!!!!!!!