'tis the damn season

‘Tis the Damn Season…

… to get sick, get sick again, get sick a third time, get sick some more times, rinse and repeat.

Yes, folks, it’s time for your regularly scheduled, “Everyone Is Sick, And Ima Whine About Post”. This one features:

* Multiple Covid tests!

* But no actual Covid, thankfully!

* Just a weird and random selection of bugs/colds/viruses/whatevers that have plagued us since October, with one or more of us being sick at any given time!

* Me coughing until I can’t breathe, then finally coughing so much I throw up! Funfunfun.

* The triumphant – and entirely predictable – return of the gout Terry is susceptible to when he doesn’t drink enough!

* Terry not drinking enough!

* A trip to Accident and Emergency as a result of this! In a pandemic!

* A creepy Playmobil baby!

* Max’s really quite strange letter to Santa!

* Max getting up an hour earlier than usual every damn day, even though we’re all too ill to function properly!

* Too many exclamation points!

* Quite a lot of annoying ALL CAPS TYPING!

With special appearances by…

* the washing machine

* the car

And guest staring our old favourites…

Slippy and The Braceloots!

(Actually just The Braceloots, though. Slippy is… no longer with us.)

<Insert cheesy 90s theme music>

Actually, that list was supposed to just be the introduction to the post, but it’s pretty much summed up everything I had to say about the last few weeks, so let’s just skip ahead to the creepy baby, shall we? Here it is:

creepy Playmobil baby This came out of Max’s Playmobil Advent Calendar (Which, full disclosure, was a PR gift, and yes, that’s an affiliate link…), and when I posted the photo on my Instagram Story, a few people messaged to say that it’s supposed to be a creepy DOLL, not a creepy BABY. Which, I mean, fine, sure, whatever, but would YOU be happy sleeping with that in your house? Exactly.

(In related news, this calendar, plus the existing one that comes out every year, is the reason Max is getting up a full hour earlier than usual, AND waking up multiple times during the night to ask if it’s time to open his advent calendar(s) yet. Christmas Eve is going to be super fun, isn’t it?)

Parenting in a Pandemic, by PlaymobilThis was basically me during 2020, so if that’s what Playmobil were going for here, they NAILED IT.

Here I am, meanwhile, on Sunday morning, when I woke up to find that we were going to have to head to the hospital for an emergency appointment for Terry, who had been up all night at that point with the pain in his foot. This happens to him, as I said, when he doesn’t drink enough, and last week he was so nauseous from whatever-the-hell bug we’ve both had this time that he couldn’t keep anything down:


Here’s both of us shortly after we discovered the car wouldn’t start YET AGAIN just as we were about to get into it to drive to the hospital:

'tis the damn season

Yes, Terry is dressed as Santa in this one. Look, just go with it, OK?

(There’s no photos, however, of the moment earlier that morning when I realised the washing machine had broken down YET AGAIN, with a full load of washing in it. That bit has absolutely no relevance to this story, by the way: I’m just including it so people can continue referring to me as a Drama Queen…)

Fortunately, my parents were already at our house, having arrived to look after Max while Terry and I were at the hospital, so my dad was able to step in and drive us instead. Even more fortunately, Terry was seen right away, which I hadn’t expected given the whole “Pandemic Kicking Off Again” situation, so at least that’s one bit of good news, and we are, as always, grateful to the NHS staff who made that happen, despite the unimaginable levels of stress they must be operating under right now.

(Slightly less fortunately, literally EVERY SINGLE PERSON in A&E was wearing their masks under their nose. Literally EVERY ONE. It was actually quite bizarre, because while I know that, in any given crowd, you can rely on at least one or two people to be using their mask as a chin warmer, to see EVERY person doing the same thing (Are you getting that it was EVERY SINGLE PERSON here?), especially in the setting where you’re most likely to come into contact with sick people was an interesting insight into why this thing is still spreading, I guess. I mean, if you can’t get people to take the pandemic seriously IN A FREAKING HOSPITAL, what chance do you have of getting them to take it seriously anywhere else?)

(I’ve actually typed and deleted the above paragraph a couple of times now, because I honestly can’t be arsed with all of the, “But masks don’t work!” and “You don’t know what their reasons were for needing to wear it on their chins!” comments, but Terry mentioned it to the doctor he saw, and the doctor – who was having to work with his window wide open, in freezing temperatures – had a huge rant about it, so, please people, for the love of God, if you’re able to wear a mask, at LEAST do it in the hospital, where there are particularly vulnerable people, plus hospital staff whose job is hard enough without you making it any harder…)

Anyway. Where was I?

Oh yeah: Terry was given steroids for his foot, my mum took all of our washing away (And then returned it immaculately ironed, even things like underwear and face cloths. Amazing!), and we returned home to find that Max’s soft toys had all contracted Covid in our absence. Woe!

Speaking of Max and his toys, here is his really quite strange Christmas list, faithfully transcribed by me to his very precise instructions:

Max's letter to Santa, 2021

So, from this, the “glass grapes” are an ornament in my parents’ house which Max deeply admires, but is not – for obvious reasons – allowed to play with. The “nice looking shiny gem twirling sticks” are a set of freaking cocktail sticks, also glass (WHAT’S WITH ALL THE GLASS?), and which he has also become acquainted with at my parents’ house, because Terry and I just ain’t fancy enough to have stuff like this lying around.

(Oh, and “bracelets” are… well, they’re bracelets, obviously. Max has been obsessed with his collection of bracelets for a couple of years now: his interest in them did fade for quite some time there, but it has been recently rekindled by the pretend jewellery shop he sets up in the living room a couple of times per week, hence their appearance on this letter. )

Anyway, I’ve ordered some cheap bracelets from ASOS, so I’ve got that covered, but I absolutely refuse to buy him GLASS ORNAMENTS for Christmas (Or for any other reason, really…), so I’m slightly concerned that even thought we’ve bought literally EVERYTHING ELSE IMAGINABLE for him, he’s still going to be disappointed on Christmas morning. Did NOT expect my almost four-year old to be demanding cocktail sticks for Christmas, though, I mean, seriously. These are the things no one ever tells you about parenthood, aren’t they?

So, yeah, I think that’s us all up to date. How’s your December going?

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books by Amber Eve
  • Miss Kitty


    Your little Playmobil scenarios made me LOL 😂 But sounds like you’ve been having a pretty bad time all round. Could you get Max some plastic cocktail sticks? I don’t know what your parents’ ones look like, but there are quite a few cute coloured ones on Amazon or Etsy. Such a funny request if you don’t know the back story though! 😅 I think I was probably the same at his age, although I don’t remember requesting cocktail sticks, but anything that was out of bounds immediately made it the most attractive thing ever.

    December 7, 2021
  • Myra


    Cocktail sticks have pointy ends so don get them, I can’t imagine what he’d do with them. I love Max’s Santa letter, and am glad you got the bracelets. I’m sure you’ve heard our three year old Max’s jewellery story when his mummy took her costume jewellery away from him but had to give some back to him when he told her she had to share ( she was teaching him how to share at the time).

    Wishing all your medical woes are over by Christmas so you can enjoy it. 😍

    December 7, 2021
  • ML


    I am so sorry for such a rough time! My husband also has gout but takes allopurinol daily to help prevent the crystal build up. If that hasn’t been a consideration before, perhaps it will help Terry. It’s a very inexpensive drug and since my husband starting taking it a number of years ago, he hasn’t had another gout flare up. Hang in there!

    December 7, 2021
  • Erin


    I actually own glass grapes (I just found them at a thrift store a few months ago) lol. If Max still wants them when you’re OK with him having glass, reach out and I’ll mail them across the pond 😉

    December 8, 2021