Friday, 13 April 2007

Oysters

There comes a time in every school holiday when the kids have finally tired of Olympic-level bickering, eating playdough, and watching wall-to-wall cartoons (okay, maybe not the last one). That’s when they turn to the tower of stuff hidden at the back of the cupboard, which can be loosely termed ‘craft kits.’
These are all birthday gifts from schoolfriends, whose mothers enjoy the warm glow associated with giving a present that is both educational and creative. What these mothers have always failed to do is enclose their Filipina maid for half a day to help make the wretched thing.
My daughter has a vast collection of these unopened kits, ranging from plate-painting, T-shirt tie-dying, crystal growing, snow-dome creating, and various knitting and sewing packs. Using my finely-honed procrastination skills, I have always convinced her that she needs to do these kits on a day that ‘we’ have more free time.
Today I was finally forced to stop running. She produced a kit (where you create little fabric toys which attach to a keychain), and set about it with gusto. Less that two minutes in, she was, understandably, having trouble threading the needle. Ten minutes later, despite heaps of encouragement, she was seething with frustration. We eventually spent all morning stitching together a shiny green ‘oyster keychain buddy.’
Now, I am not the world’s greatest needlewoman, and the resultant oyster looks like it owes its heritage to Dr Frankenstein, rather than the shores of Brittany, but she seems delighted with it.
I think my (very domestic) mother-in-law realised I was going to be a huge disappointment to her, when her masterclass on ‘how to put a duvet into its cover correctly’ failed to elicit the expected grateful response from me. Although I am rather scathing of Grandma’s obsession with domestic trivia, I have to agree that her sewing skills would have come in very handy today.
In a futile attempt to avoid gender-stereotyping the boys, I invited them to make an oyster too. Thankfully they preferred to run up and down the garden non-stop, which required no parental involvement whatsoever. They also managed to produce their very own 'Dockyard oysters' as a result.
Given that it is Friday night, I should be popping open the prosecco. However, courtesy of a recommendation from Stay At Home Dad I have a glass of Waitrose Pfalz Riesling (£4.99) in front of me. It is, as he describes, both fruity and dry, and it will go extremely well with tonight’s curry. However, I’m not at all convinced by his argument that its intensity means that you drink less of it. Thanks SAHD! If anyone else wants to recommend their favourite wine for under a tenner, I would be delighted to give it a go.

9 comments:

mutterings and meanderings said...

Funnily enough, my mum used to procrastinate over making things with kits with me too...especially when it came to getting out the Potter's Wheel kit. I loved that - it was so messy!

spymum said...

Oh why did I click on that link!? Eeeuw!

DrunkMummy, bless you for revealing the fact that you have un-opened 'craft kits' at home! We have several left over from Christmas (shameful!!) and even more from a recent birthday and I have been castigating myself over my appalling yummy mummy skills!

I despair of myself, I really do!

(Great comment on Caitlin Moran's AlphaMummy article btw!)

Jackie said...

Hi Drunk Mummy - love the name of your blog! I don't suppose you'd like to have a drink with me? My blog is www.motherbehavingbadly.blogspot.com and you might be interested to know that I used to write for The Bad Mothers Club too. Chin chin....

Jackie (from Australia)

Drunk Mummy said...

M&M - good grief, a Potter's Wheel! Your poor Mum - that might just tip me over the edge.

Spymum, I think the police should launch a 'craft kit' amnesty, to tackle the rising menace of craft kits. Troubled parents could hand them in without fear of prosecution.

Hi Jackie!
Nice to meet you - love your poetry!

The Secretary said...

Dear Drunk Mummy,

I too am a lover of wine - however, I go for quantity not quality - although I do draw the line at anything that tastes remotely like toilet cleaner, although there have been occasions..... anyway, for me if it comes in a box (so I can take it with me and keep refilling), then that's good by me. However, the other day, I was sat in the garden and the wine box ran out and I was caught by a neighbour, having removed the bag from the box, squeezing the last drops into my glass, I swear she thought I was emptying a colostomy bag..................

rilly super said...

drunkmummy darling, your sewing may not be up to much but nobody else could so seamlessly move from the topic of industrial bogeys to a wine review. phlegm to pfalz in the blink of an eye, cough and you miss it!

dulwichmum said...

I hate these dreadful kits that people have dispensed to my children, Sea Monkeys and an earthworm farm hold particular horrors. I spent the holidays distracting my children with Haribo Jellies and Fruit Shoots...

mutterings and meanderings said...

The Secretary, we used to squeeze the dregs of the wine bags into our mouths ...

Drunk Mummy said...

Secretary and M&M,
Drunk Mummy Handy Hint: I hope when you have squeezed out the wine box bag, you then blow into the dispensing 'tap' - you can inflate the bag to make a lovely (if rather shiny) pillow to relax on while you enjoy your wine. Now that's what I call a craft kit.

Dulwich Mum, we had Sea Monkeys for about three months - or was it just a jar of fetid stagnant water? It was difficult to tell.

Rilly - I thank you. I owe my "segues" to 1980s Radio 1 DJs (although I always thought it was written as 'segway')