Monday evening, and I am already eating Nutella from the jar. The reason? The trials of homework coupled with pre menstrual madness. And I think I have toothache. I say think. I've never had toothache before. I've never had a filling before. I'm blaming it on stress induced hazelnut spread bingeing. Homework is giving me cavities.
Of course had I written this post earlier today (which was the plan, but other stuff got in the way), then it would have been a much more laid back affair. As it is, I am sat inwardly seething. After school shenanigans, which lead to confiscation of his games console and computer, Alf spent an hour or so doing his homework at the dining table. He huffed. He puffed. He kept making the computer talk to me. It kept saying "I'm tired," and "hello Mother," and "what's French for poo?" Then he started drumming his fingers on the table, cracking his knuckles and coughing.
Meanwhile Olly wouldn't read his reading book. And he wouldn't do his spellings. I have to admit my dismay last Thursday, when his teacher stood at the top of the steps that leads to his classroom, and announced the inclusion of spellings in his book bag. I nearly ran away. I have spent eighteen years cajoling homework out of my children. I think I deserve a medal frankly. Talk about pull your hair out parenting.
But I digress.......
Weekends chez Today's Stuff are fleeting and precious. Fleeting, because Marc is only home at the weekend. Precious, because of our time spent as a family. My favourite kind of weekend is one that is a mixture of doing something and doing nothing. I feel that the weekend has been wasted if we can't get out and about for at least some of it. I also feel it's important for everyone to be able to relax and chill out. Certainly since Olly has gone back to school, his need for relaxation at home has grown. Marc uses the time to unwind, relax and catch up on his sleep (or at least take advantage of a long Saturday lie in). Alfie disappears into his teenage cave. Sometimes the weekend is scuppered by illness. Or bad tempers. Or bickering. Sometimes the children are a handful. But on balance, the weekends are usually good all round.
This weekend was no exception. Saturday was gloriously sunny and warm, and we wandered into town for a pasty lunch. We sat on the harbour, and met up with friends. Olly climbed the harbour wall ropes. Town was busy, but not full. There was a good atmosphere along the front, as local people made the most of a town without too many visitors. A good day in November is as nice as a good one in July.
We walked home along Porthmeor, where the wind blew in gusts along the beach. The tide was on the turn, but the waves were foamy. Olly walked along holding onto his hood. There weren't many people; mainly dog walkers and the odd surfer. The cafés are closed until Christmas, and the Tate is closed until next May. Honey, who loves a bit of wind, barked until we threw pebbles for her. I inhaled lungful's of air in the vain hope that my detox headache would subside, and it did ease.
Weekends are all about food, and that usually means curry. And pudding. We had the curry on Saturday night, and the I made a rice pudding on Sunday. There are usually bacon sandwiches, there is lots of tea and coffee. I enjoy cooking, and Marc enjoys eating what I cook. He never complains, and is always grateful. Sometimes I think I'd like to be cooked for, but to be honest that's just the way it is here.
Weekends are all about lounging. On sofas, while engrossed in a book. I finished a book about The Krays this weekend. Not my usual thing, but interesting nonetheless. Or we sit watching the television. This weekend was the obligatory Attenborough, Dr Who, Star Wars, Antiques Roadshow and an Aardman film about pirates. Marc lounges, drinking coffee and snuggling up with the boys. Over the years, it has been tradition for them all to jump into bed with him on a weekend morning.
Weekends are about something different. This weekend, Alfie and his cadet chums were part of the Remembrance Sunday parade in Hayle. We went along too, in support of him and for the service itself. I had never been to one before. I usually watch it on the television. It was very emotional. I was immensely proud of Alfie, and very moved by the service. The names of those men from Hayle, who lost their lives in the two World Wars were read out. A poignant tribute.
Weekends are about baking. This weekend I made my Christmas cakes. I used self raising flour by mistake, and had an inner hissy fit while they cooked. But they seem alright to me. I was going to make a ginger cake, but couldn't be bothered to buy any more treacle. I enjoy baking at the weekends. It feels more leisurely than during the week.
This weekend was about a spot of DIY. There is a long list of stuff to be done, and the window of opportunity is very small. Non existent during sailing season. I am hopeful that some of it will get ticked off this side of Christmas. I don't blame Marc for not wanting to do it. He spends precious little time here as it is.
Weekends are far too short. It only feels like it has started when Marc gets home on Friday evening, and it finishes quite early on a Sunday evening. Marc has to be gone by 5am on Monday morning, and so it's an early night all round. Sometimes I get frustrated by it, but I'm also used to it.
Our weekends are no different to most others. But they are special nonetheless.