And it’s not even 9am


My ongoing campaign to win “Worst Mother Alive” continues to gather pace.

This morning, I was rushing around trying to find the permanent marker to write the name in Flea’s new school coat, purchased on Friday at enormous expense to replace the school coat she’s already lost. 

In case you’re wondering, I’m using a permanent marker because I’ve lost the name labels I bought sometime over the summer holidays. Like mother, like daughter, I guess.

Anyway, Flea is pouring her cereal and spills it on her jumper. “Go upstairs and get another one,” I tell her.

Flea’s at that funny age when sometimes four seems awfully grown up and she can do everything herself, then suddenly, she is too little to do anything without Mummy’s help. “But I don’t know where my jumpers are, I need you to help me,” she says, bottom lip already quivering.

Oh, for goodness sake,” I say, as I realise I should have given my child a shorter name that would actually fit on a bloody label. “In your wardrobe. Go.”

She trudges upstairs, giving me a black glare as she passes. Two minutes later, she comes back down – no jumper. “I can’t find it Mummy.”

I adopt my best stern voice. “Go upstairs and put a jumper on. Right now.”

She trudges back upstairs, now crying quietly to herself. “And why on EARTH are you crying? ” I shout after her. “Just get the jumper, or you’ll go to school without one, and you'll be cold.

Two minutes later she returns. She’s wearing her raincoat. “What is THAT, you weirdo?” (I know this isn’t textbook positive parenting, but it'll give her something to talk about in therapy, later on.)

She looks up at me, eyes brimming with tears. “It’s a jumper?

Right. I march upstairs, trailing small child behind me, into her bedroom. With a theatrical flourish, I open the wardrobe. No jumpers. That’s the moment I remember that I moved all her jumpers to her chest of drawers on Friday. Ah. I sense I may have lost whatever small thread of parental authority I ever had.

Flea sang her new composition: "My Mummy is a silly sausage" all the way to school.


Sally is a full-time blogger and founder of the Tots100, Trips100, Foodies100 and HIBS100 communities, along with the MAD Blog Awards. She spends a bit too much time on the Internet. She’s also a very happy Mum to Flea, the world’s coolest ten year old.

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  1. 28th September 2009 / 10:57 am

    Oh dear, I’ve done that too, almost exactly the same scenario. Flea will forget much, much sooner than you.

  2. 28th September 2009 / 11:13 am

    Silly sausage. I like that!

  3. 28th September 2009 / 1:05 pm

    Oh, I’m with you all the way. Silly Sausage and all. (Although more often I’m a Rotten Egg.)

  4. 28th September 2009 / 1:14 pm

    Oh yes, I feel your pain. I’ve done that and then the daughter has said she didn’t want to tell me because she might make me angry. Humble pie isn’t a nice taste is it?

  5. 28th September 2009 / 1:33 pm

    What do mean Flea’s name wouldn’t fit on the label? You can’t get much shorter than Flea.
    On wait… you mean Flea’s name isn’t ACTUALLY Flea?? And there was me thinking you were all Bohemian.
    It’s Esmerelda isn’t it, or maybe Nympdadora? Or Mahershalalhashbaz (it’s real – it’s in the bible). Yeah I’d probably struggle to fit that on a label too.
    I am busy working on your Bad Mother 2009 trophy – it’s best of three though, you need one more.

  6. Sally
    28th September 2009 / 1:37 pm

    Her full name is actually Felicity, but she’s been Flea since she was born. I’m not sure if it makes us bohemian, though.
    AS for my award, remind me to tell you about the time I dropped Flea headfirst into a toy box. At a friend’s birthday party, in front of about 50 other parents. Oops.

  7. 28th September 2009 / 5:55 pm

    I will fight you for your trophy: I fed my daughter mini cheddars and a Fruit Shoot for lunch yesterday when we were at the park (and thus on public display.)

  8. Liz
    28th September 2009 / 6:22 pm

    I’d love to know the rest of the lyrics to My Mummy is a Silly Sausage. But please don’t mention it to my offspring as I suspect it would quickly become the household anthem.

  9. 28th September 2009 / 8:37 pm

    Oh I can see the whole scenario – poor little Flea. I hate it when they’re right – makes you feel hideous doesn’t it? I’m sure she’ll recover though…but seriously, what happened to the coat??

  10. 28th September 2009 / 10:36 pm


  11. 29th September 2009 / 11:53 am

    Brilliant post.
    Just spurted tea all over my keyboard at your ‘What is THAT, you weirdo?’ comment.

  12. 30th September 2009 / 12:48 pm

    Ha Ha – this is the story of my life !! and how bad do I feel when they are on the verge of tears, and threaten them with 10 minutes on their bed if they dont do as they are told because I am that harrassed, only to find that the item isnt where I swore blind it was – I blame the faries for moving stuff since they are apparently responsible for doing all the cooking cleaning etc – oh and you got off lightly with the silly sausage our 9 yr old said Whatever Major Loser – complete with hand actions courtesy of Disney’s Camp Rock – ‘Ill Major Loser ya ‘ !!!

  13. 2nd October 2009 / 3:24 pm

    Oh this sounds familiar.
    I tried to persuade my youngest that she was going to be late for school if she didn’t eat her breakfast quicker, and she pointed out that it was really because I’d been on the computer for so long before breakfast, in spite of her repeated warnings that we’d be late if I didn’t get breakfast started.