Boy child AKA Son # 1

11666251_10153067405878918_4923035875224160178_nThe past few months I have watched my eldest son morph into this tall, croaky voiced, opinionated young man. He turned fifteen in August and with that birthday, some one must have given him a box of “attitude”. Who ever the hell that was, I will hunt you down, I will find you, and you will get the box back, shoved up ya BUM! For now though, I’d just like to explain the metamorphosis of this child to adolescent.

12027509_1070848499613256_8693754024007688409_nA girlfriend tagged me in this pic yesterday on FB.

Insanity, hell yes!

It couldn’t be truer unless I wrote it myself. The back answering, slippery lipped child of mine pushes me (and hubby) to the brink of slapping him into next week, almost daily. He should be two years ahead of us by now… Counting to my usual number 10 has turned into zoning out for at least an hour while he rambles under his breath loud enough for us to hear from in his bedroom, about not being allowed to play LOL (League of Legends) for six hours straight, and that his life sucks and he shouldn’t have to do the dishes or put his clothes away or vac his room and we never let him do anything or go anywhere and he has nothing… Yup. You have nothing my child, really?

1186167_10151621118773918_1072303300_nNot that long ago he was a gorgeous, well-mannered, funny little human, with a smile as wide as the Murray River. Not much has changed really except for the manners; they turn up when it suits him or I give him the Death Stare or a punch in the arm. He is still gorgeous, more than ever, with a smile that can melt my world when he smiles properly and it’s not the “poo grimace”, which all of his school portraits bare. His kind of funny is still hanging around, although he’s not great with sarcasm and comes off sounding like an arse more often than not. I guess this will come in time.

Some days he drives me round the twist with his incessant pestering about LOL and his boom-boxing while slapping his legs, the chair, the table, pop in a whistle then more bashing and tapping. I’ll admit he actually sounds pretty good sometimes, but it’s always when you are trying to concentrate or listen to the news… his timing has always been impeccable.

He is an ideas man our boy and for Christmas last year, he asked for a push mower and Green Machine. His idea was to mow the lawns, just roll and go… well that stopped after Boxing day and the fucking mower is hanging in the shed. The Green Machine was never going to happen, so after a little white lie about them being out of stock and it being on order for 5 months, he finally says, “okay, I get it Mother”. After some serious and difficult because-we-yell-at-him-all-the-time-and-its-not-a-conversation, conversation we came up with an alternative. A good quality road bike and then there followed the idea he would participate in the Round The Bay in a Day.

12118854_10153283739433918_814679765193829201_n 12115437_10153283739668918_3270166168608217700_nWith support from his ‘Papa’ and about $3K of eBaying for cycling shit for BOTH of them, father and son (and Uncle) participated in the 135km leg and completed it. Without a single doubt, this day was the proudest day of my life when it comes to my big boy. He set himself a goal and made it happen, with some encouragement. So after they got off their bikes from the ride, his true adolescent-self kicked in and he was the cranky, cantankerous, unreceptive to congratulations or praise,12088485_10153283740063918_4024764961431298569_n tired and exhausted child that we know. I guess an early start to the day at 4am and burning about 2000 calories over 6 hours will do that to you? Secretly I think he was emotional too but unsure how to handle it. Hard work and preparation paid off and he now has his eyes of the full 230km next year, (maybe lol).

So as I sit here blogging away, guess what? He has grabbed his mower and is mowing the lawn… what the hell? Has he learned ESP too in the past 6 months? Anyway, he’s a great young man who makes us smile aside from the crazy antics he puts us through daily and the 10410902_10152559726658918_8822167155860358342_ncalling me “Mother” business. He’s 10418224_10152207051773918_6815071770235261719_ngenerous and 11224741_10153028596288918_5258972313415334299_nloving when no one is looking, and has a whacked sense of humour.

He is loyal and true even though his mood swings make him intolerable to the people he loves, particularly his little brother who secretly looks up to him while they wrestle on the floor until one of them takes it too far and someone’s knackers end up squished or a fat lip is served cold with a “you jerk!”. We are a normal family of that I have no doubt and I look forward to them becoming grown men with ‘normal’ kids of their own perhaps.  Watching your son grow hairy legs and hearing his voice change daily is something to behold.207081_5774608917_9941_n 11407060_10153017637243918_7827716293347777400_n The darkening over the top lip in readiness for the first shave and hands and feet that just keep fucking growing!

Back to that pic my girlfriend shared. Farting… yeah, it’s rife in our home and dropping your guts while washing the dishes or just walking down the hall way is common and often. Kissing parents on the other hand is NOT. You have to sit on him to get a cuddle or any kind of affection from him UNLESS he feels the need to sneak in a cuddle with his Mumma on the couch and every now and again he seeks his Papa’s closeness so will sit next to the old man because that’s enough.

He will hate that I have blogged about him, and I’ll get a mouth full from him when he reads it, so if you are reading this Mitch. I love you. You’re my big baby who makes me smile even when you shit me. I am proud of you, you’re so smart and thoughtful and have the world at your fingertips if you choose to grab it. While you’re using your fingertips, can you please do the dishes? Ta mate! Mwah!!

Make sure you turn the teapot twice clockwise and once anticlockwise!

Nom

Omen?… Perhaps? Snake… YUP!

I’ve blogged about snakes before. My complete fear of them and how they freak me the fuck out.

Warm weather is here and so are the snakes. Hand in hand they go, we all know that, but unless you live in the country, you don’t generally get touched by their presence.

We were headed up the river over the weekend for the ‘new’ Victorian Long Weekend thanks to the Grand Final Public Holiday. What a bloody shocker that game turned out to be and thank fuck I didn’t waste a great weekend of weather sitting at home watching the Hawks flog the Weagles! Amen to that.

Dropping off my finches was the start of what was to be, an eventful weekend. Walking up my finch-sitter’s driveway I was greeted by her son, who was in a bit of a flap because their dog had been in a fight with a Tiger Snake. Mind you the dog pretty well mauled the tiger snake, evidence of it was laying in the shopping bag… I couldn’t bring myself to look inside the bag. My skin was crawling. Little tiger snakes mean MORE little tiger snakes! That’s a fucking fact! So that was snake warning one, heard loud and fucking clear!

Snake warning two arrived when we were driving along one of the dirt tracks a few kilometres from camp. A Black Snake (aka red belly black) slithering up onto the track, unfortunately Ben ran over it… He couldn’t swerve to miss it while towing a chock a block boat full of camping gear. Skittled snake. I won’t say I’m sorry. Tootleoo Red Belly Black…

By this point I had snake on my fucking mind, and it was high topic at camp. I guess the fact that we had two extra youths who had never camped with us before, kind of made the whole snake thing more of a priority. We discussed the ‘watching out for them’ numerous times, like, EVERY time the kids moved! Yup, probably over kill, but for me it’s just a verbal reflex, “watch for snakes!” is like saying pass me the salt please? All the kids heard me, and they also heard Lea, the other ‘camp mother’.

So, chillaxing away, everything is unpacked and we are kicking back around the camp. Kids go for a walk and Colby comes back with snake warning three… a whopping great fucking snake-skin. UGH! Man, I cannot handle anything remotely looking like a snake. Just too much for my heart. I stayed clear from Colby, while he burnt the skin piece by piece in the fire… weird kid! So then again, snakes were the choice conversation. The word snake was being thrown around the camp prolifically. I guess in a sense desensitising me to the word. You hear it, but not hear it at the same time.

We have been going camping for near on fifteen years. Going away at least four times a year, when most of those trips are in the warmer months, it’s rare that we see any snake. Really, if I am honest, we might have seen three all up, and they have all been snakes in the water, crossing the river… far enough away to not create a drama or camp panic.

Anyway not long after the snake-skin warning most of us were milled around the kitchen area. I was standing at the table, cleaning one of the ‘newbies’ newly skun knee from a scrap he had with a stump and the dirt. A gust of wind picked up and blew the Band-Aid I was holding out of my hand, so the other “newbie” raced to get it…all just as Bailey my “other-son” says calmly “SNAKE”…

Snake warning FOUR!!!!

Colby yells RUUUUN!!! (totally what you shouldn’t do, right?)

My heart falls out of my arse as I look down to my left foot and watch a red belly black snake almost touch my foot as it clambered across the shade-cloth floor, right through the kitchen, flicking its shiny black body around; in between feet and legs of chairs and tables and my fucking feet. I SCREAMED like I have never screamed in all my life. My eyes were about to pop out of my head. I don’t scream, I can’t scream, mainly because I am really shit at it, and it’s more like an adolescents voice breaking. I screamed, and I screamed and my poor heart almost popped out of my chest. I completely lost my shit. All of my shit. Gone. My dignity. Gone too. Holy fucking shitballs! Did that really just happen? And, how did I get on this bench seat?

The dogs were after it then, the camp was in full drive panic, “get the fucking dogs!” and I am still screaming, because screaming works, clearly! That snake was scared! Yup. I was shaking and stiff all at the same time. Wanting to run, but trying to stay calm, my arms and hand shaking violently. I completely lost my mind. I don’t know how I didn’t pass out because I was clearly out of breath from screaming.

Ben and Barry, calmly got rid of it after the kids caught the dogs while I screaming from the safety of the seat, watching from a distance, completely out of control.

After the ‘Jo-Blake” was moved and I got down off the seat, I finished patching up the newbies knee while everyone rehashed me squealing and Colby yelling “run”. We all learned a valuable lesson, and I guess we were over due for a snake in the camp. We have expected it, but never actually discussed what we should do if it happened. We all new about 5 minutes after the fact.

So, knowing that now (and all along) here’s what you SHOULD do if a snake comes into camp:

  1. Don’t run. Or yell run!
  2. Don’t panic.
  3. Slowly move the opposite way if you are a distance from it, or repeat number 1.
  4. Don’t squeal, snakes are deaf!
  5. Do listen to the snake warnings!

All along, the universe was trying to tell me it was snake time. Three warnings it presented, and I failed to listen… that showed me didn’t it? I always listen… dumb arse!

Make sure you turn the teapot twice clockwise and once anticlockwise!

Nom