Andrea Mara

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a chip off the (not so old) block

Today we went to a birthday party – all five of us. My eldest has been giving out about this upcoming birthday party for the last two weeks, saying she wouldn’t know anyone, she’d be older than all the other kids (the birthday girl is a friend of my four year old), she’d have nothing to do, she’s be shy, she wouldn’t enjoy it….it went on and on.

As we approached the venue, she exclaimed “What? It’s in a play-centre? I love play-centres! Yay! I love climbing so much, this is the best day ever! Why didn’t you tell me it was in a play-centre?”

I had told her, when we first got the invitation, and had mentioned it many times sense, but she doesn’t listen. My husband and I shared a slightly exasperated but mostly amused look as she continued to enthuse about all the climbing she would do.

This not listening is a known “thing” – her teacher has mentioned it too. And she didn’t lick it off a stone.

After the parent-teacher meeting, I was confused and bewildered to have produced a child who doesn’t listen in school and has a strong tendency towards incredible levels of scattiness. My husband was not confused. He just hung his head and said “em, that might come from my side…”

And indeed, there have been many “but I told you all of this already” conversations between us over the years, the best being when he asked what we were doing one weekend and I had to remind him that we were going to his brother’s wedding. I call him “sieve-head”. A lot.

My four year old has also inherited some interesting traits from her dad, including a complete inability to pass an electronic screen without being sucked in to whatever is showing, even if it’s third-division Turkish football.
As I type this, she is glued to Jake and the Neverland Pirates and when I tell her that there’s an elephant in the room and that we’re going to space for dinner, there’s no reaction – her eyes never leave the screen.

The baby is showing some signs of following in his dad’s footsteps too – one notable habit is circling the table finishing everyone else’s meal. They didn’t call my husband “dusty-bin” for nothing when he was a child.

All three have picked up his musical ability – they won’t be the next Osmonds or Corrs, that’s for sure… (I share some of the genetic blame on this one)

But like all blog-posts, this one has a happy ending. My kids are also showing some lovely traits and characteristics that I know come more from my husband than from me.

As mentioned, the five year old loves climbing – she love adventure, getting stuck-in, in whatever play-centre or playground or forest path is on front of her. This sense of adventure does not come from me.
And my four year old is a comedian in the making – she has a wry sense of humour, has been putting on funny voices since she started to talk, and walking past us with a bucket on her head – anything to get a laugh. Her dad is the same – always looking for the funny and the fun in everything.
And the baby – well, of course we think he’ll be a premier-ship footballer, like his dad nearly, almost could have been.

I hope they continue to grow and develop in the footsteps of their dad – he is generous, so generous, and kind, and thoughtful. He is unfailingly hard-working – in the office and at home. He never moans about cleaning the kitchen or putting out the bins, or the non-stop  not-always-merry-go-round that is life with three small children.

He stops to play with the kids no matter how busy he is, no matter how late it is. He teaches them to play football and ride their bikes, and scoops them up when they fall, distracting them with tickles and jokes. He brings them swimming, and pushes them on swings, over and over and over. And he makes an amazing cup of tea – that last one is for me.

So happy father’s day Mr. husband; our kids are lucky have you – genetic predisposition to scattiness is forgiven.





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