Sleep: none

I feel I need to make a short apology.

Sorry.

There.  Thank you, goodnight.

Sleep Deprivation

A fresh-faced 28 year old (ahem) after 45 mins sleep all night (truth. And it was broken, at that)

(Sorry, walked into that one).  My posts are worse than usual and I’ve still only drafted my Orkney ones because I’m not completely on form.  Mainly because of extreme sleep deprivation.  Petri Dish Prime (Midi Minx) caught a cough that she spread to the entire family, whilst hers turned into yet another ear infection.  So Mini is waking up through the night unable to breathe, dehydrated and wanting to feed; Midi is waking up in pain and feeling rubbish and wanting Mummy-huggles; and Maxi Minx is waking up all alone and feeling lonely, so wanting Mummy-huggles.  End result is that I’m not getting a whole lot of shut-eye.  Which makes me a right crabbit bitch.  And I don’t want to deluge my blog with Posting of Evil Vitriol (unless some sod really deserves it…).  So I’ve basically been unwell for 5 solid weeks now.  Nice start to being 40 😦

Oh yeah, and it’s not just the minxes who’re keeping me up – at 0045hrs the other night, me and The Boss finally went to bed, having finished making a cake for Maxi’s birthday.  And I’ve signed-up to do my very first craft fair in a fortnight, with not a lot of stock.  So updating my blog has had to take a bit of a backseat, which I hate, because I use it as my internal safety fuse. 

I can tough out a basic lack of sleep, and have been doing for years.  But when it’s severe (less than 2 hrs sleep, broken, the past 3 nights, and around 4hrs a night the rest of the week before), then the short-term memory loss it induces is what I really struggle with.  That, and short-term memory loss 😉  Seriously: that, and losing the ability to be flexible.  I think the most frustrating thing about my wee life just now is not being able to do a single task from start to finish, and lack of sleep stops me being able to keep hold of all the uncompleted threads in my head to make sure I go back and finish them.

Let me give you a daft example.  The other day I needed to hang out a washing.  A mucky family of 5 who all have bad colds means I’m doing 14 washloads a week.  Simple!  My washing machine is a few feet from the back door, which itself is only a few yards from the line.  But I had 3 minxes to sort out.  I could have parked 2 in front of CBeebies and one in her playpen, and kept nipping in and out every 30 seconds or so.  But from experience something inevitably happens on one of my trips back to the house, so the washing remains unhung.  So, I decided to get them all out in the garden to play for a bit so I could eyeball them while pegging wet washing.

I got 2 towels hung.  Mini won’t stop crying in her buggy because she’s being a cling-on, so I go to comfort her before the neighbours ring Childline. Go back, hang one tea-towel.  Mini sounds like she’s being murdered.  Go back and give her a kiss, then a different toy.  Peg up a flannel.

“P says I’m an old lady!” whines (3 year old) Midi about her sister, Maxi.  I ignore her, so she rubs her snot-encrusted nose on my jeans.  I yell at Maxi and ignore Midi some more.  She demands a Mummy-huggle and launches her 3-stone self at my shins.  I stumble and step a muddy foot on a was-clean-a-second-ago bib.  Chuck it in the direction of the washing machine.  Back to the washing.  Midi’s now poking at Mini, who’s screaming again.  Separate them.  Peg up a towel.

“I got bogeys!” screams Midi.  Mop them up with spare jeans-pocket-tissue (standard issue to all parents in the maternity unit, I think).  Wipe hands, pick up another tea-towel.  Flap it at Mini to make her smile.  Get a watery one.

Hear the front door bell get rung 4 times and the door get hammered loudly.  Drop tea-towel in fright, thinking someone’s needing help, yell to Maxi that she’s in charge, check gate is locked, run to the front door.  Bloody postman.  Too breathless to shout at him.  Accept package.  Chuck package at the kitchen table, race out to the garden.

Find Midi trying to eat some tulips.  She’s having a tentative lick.  Go over and yank her away.  Propel her in direction of scooter.  Retrieve tea-towel from mud.  Chuck at the washing machine.  Wave to howling Mini.  Pick up flannel.

Spot Midi poking at some newly-planted seeds.  Yell at Midi, give her a mini kite, stomp back to crying Mini.  Realise Maxi’s nowhere to be found.  Quick search shows her back in front of CBeebies.  Decide to leave her there for a sec.  On way back out the phone rings.  Cursing, leave it to answerphone, because that’s what answerphones are for.  Reaching the back door hear the message being recorded faintly and realise I need to take this.  Race back to the phone, but they’ve already rung off.  Curse again, and run to the garden.  Midi’s picked 3 tulips and Mini’s still crying, and the first 2 towels have blown off the line.  Into the muddy bit.  Swear a bit more loudly than strictly safe, stuff the whole basket of washing on top of the machine, give it all up as a bad job, retrieve 2 outdoor minxes, grab a chocolate mini roll as a thumb-sucker substitute en-route to the living-room, and glower through a comfort breast-feed for Mini.  Little teething minx bites me.  Consider crying.  Decide to have another chocolate roll instead.

I’m convinced that had I had more sleep I’d have coped with that particular waste of 35 minutes a lot better – example, got the bloody washing out in a oner, ignoring all other distractions!

Chop-chop, Busy-busy, Work-work, Bang-bang

Unidentified Fish

Fish to identify in the poll below ->

What a day!  The Boss is off work for the rest of the week, so after yesterday’s day of catch-up (tons of laundry, clean-up, shop-shop-shop) we were determined to be properly outside today.

Kelp fishing

Kelp fishing to the Max-i

All 3 minxes ate a big breakfast, so obviously all that lovely fresh air and exercise in Orkney has had a bit of a lasting good effect.  Quick scatter of a ton of dried-in mud from 4 pairs of wellies onto the clean hall floor <rolls eyes> and off for a 10 minute walk to our own little spot of beautiful windiness – rock-pooling just along from the local maltings.

Rock Pooling

Midi Shower

As usual I found the stripey stones and boulders there mesmerising, while the girls preferred to slither amongst the seaweed.  The Boss searched for sea glass (he’s a bit obsessed…), which Maxi helped him with.  But it was meeee who spotted the purple bit <preen>.  I also found a freshly-dead fish, but I’m not sure what it is – little mackerel?  Sprat?  Little herring?  Maxi beach-combed for shells, kelp and sea anemones, Midi dug industriously (for what I don’t know – a bigger, deeper hole?) and Mini settled in happily to our first proper back-carry in the wrap. 

Back Wrap

Bomb-proof (?!) back wrap cross carry

We tried a rucksack carry around the house last night, but I wanted something more reinforced for today.  It was so comfy for us both that she fell asleep and I kept honking on to The Boss about how brilliant it was, and how much more comfy it was than a front carry.  It was just so wonderful to be able to carry Mini but still have my arms free to play with my big girls.  The only not-so-wonderful thing was her rubbing her banana piece into my hair…

Scary Monster

Limpet Monster

We were only out maybe 90 mins or so, but by golly we needed the scooby snacks (kids – smarties and banana pieces) and hot coffee (grown-ups).  That wind was stronger than ‘gusting 30’ and it was bitter.  So we traipsed back, pondering over how bees are born, and watching a lorry fill up with malted barley at the maltings, ready for a distillery.

For once, my clean washing wasn’t bombed by seagulls (horrible vermin generally splatter on my washing at least once a week, and once got me and baby Mini when she was 4 weeks old – half-digested fish and ammonia, bleurgh), so in a fit of sunshine-induced vigour I decided to mow the front and back lawns.  Well to give you an idea of how much the grass had grown, I completely filled the (vast) compost bin and the big brown wheelie bin…  Quick zoom down to the village and back with Mini in the buggy to post some parcels (paid-for eBay sales – hooray!), then collapse on the living room floor – sooooooore back!

Mini is a happy wee sausage today.  She’s properly cruising along the furniture and can walk holding onto Midi’s toy keyboard stand on wheels.  Mini’s just discovered how to make Maxi’s harmonica work by sucking as well as blowing.  I’m not sure all the drool is helping the sound much, but when it burbles too much she just squeals and shrieks with delight anyway.  No-one can hear much for a minute or so after Mini squeals – too bloody loud.

Another Mini first – she can drink out of a normal cup with handles, no lid.  I just kept refilling it with a wee dribble of water in the bottom.  I’ve already warned The Boss that we need to let her feed herself completely now, even the sloppy stuff, because (a) she can, and (b) she gets furious when you ‘baby’ her.  Shields up!