Sabotage is a word that perfectly sums up the day we have had.
Katie mentioned earlier in the week that she really wanted to see the new film "Monsters University". We had said we both wanted to see it but childcare logistics meant it wasn't feasible to arrange over the school holidays. This weekend we had a weekend with nothing planned. Perfect timing I thought. I booked two premier seating tickets for Katie and I to go to the cinema in the big town near us and planned to go for a nice lunch and buy some stickers that she needed to decorate her homebook for school. I also planned that we could get some new party shoes for Katie because she had outgrown her lovely sparkly silver pair that we bought for Auntie C's wedding last year.
I was really looking forward to having some girly time, just Katie and I.
Sounds like a lovely day doesn't it?
It does until you factor in a surprise reappearance of Bonkers Child!
We went to dance class in the morning. Running late as usual but so far so good. We came home and spent an hour or so at home just sorting a few bits out and chatting to our architect about the roof plans for our extension. At 11:30am off we set.
Katie was excited about getting her stickers. We went to the nearby Staples and to Tesco Metro and got lots of lovely stickers. We found one of those A-frame Walkers for Pip's birthday present and the day was looking good. It was looking good until we tried on party shoes.
It's getting to a point where I hate shoe shopping with Katie. We get the biggest temper tantrums known to mankind when shoe shopping. Today's epic tantrum was because the size 11 shoes were too small and the size 12 shoes were too large. The simple solution (in my mind that is) was to look in another shop, maybe one where they have half sizes, but no, Katie wanted those ones.
I walked away to see if that would calm things down and met another mum who smiled knowingly at me and said:
"My child is doing the same thing over the other side of the shop. I've left her with my mum"
We exchanged a few pleasantries about the delights of 4 and 5 year old girls and I returned to Katie to see if we could make any progress.
She decided she wouldn't let me put her other sandal back on. Eventually I picked up the sandal and walked away, sandal in hand, Katie eventually running after me, screaming.
I tried some labelling techniques......
"Katie I can see that you are feeling very angry and upset. That must feel horrible for you inside. Is there anything I can do to help?"
What I really wanted to say was...
"Stop behaving like a spoilt little brat" but I'm being therapeutic so I kept amazingly calm. Brilliantly calm some of the observers might have said, particularly when Katie was hitting and kicking me.
Katie didn't want to calm down just yet it appeared so I walked away again. Katie dive bombed my leg and held on as I walked. It was quite funny to come of the people walking past it seemed. I found a chair and sat down and she launched herself at me for a screaming cuddle.
Eventually she calmed down. It took a lot of "eventually".
I was in two minds at this point. Shoe shopping was definitely now off the cards. No way am I buying anything after all that but we did have the rest of the day booked so what to do? Do I just say "To hell with the £20 the tickets cost and we just go home?" or do we soldier on and see if the day can be salvaged.
I went for option 2! You'll see me comment later in this post that I'm not a total novice.....you might be forgiven at this point for screaming at me via the computer that I'm a total idiot!
We went to an ASK restaurant near to the cinema. They have a great children's menu with things that Katie likes to eat. She said she wanted Carbonara so I said we could eat in there.
She ate some of the breadsticks and crudites that came as a first course but when the Carbonara arrived she took one look at it, screwed up her face and said belligerently:
"What's that green stuff on the top?"
"It's a bit of flat leaf parsley Katie. Same as Mummy uses when I cook this, your favourite dish, at home"
"I don't want it!"
She then ate two tiny pieces of bacon and refused to eat anymore citing that she felt sick. She sat and deep breathed dramatically whilst I attempted to eat my Gluten-free Fiorentina pizza. It was a nice pizza but it was very hard to enjoy it to be honest with all the dramatics going on. We should have just gone to McDonalds. We should have just gone home.
I decided Katie wasn't having dessert because she didn't eat her Carbonara and we were running late for the start of the programme by that point anyway so we had to rush off. Katie then started asking if the film was going to be scary. I wondered if she was anxious about going to the cinema. It's been a while since we'd been (and it will be a long while before we return I suspect). We talked about Monsters Inc, which is on our Sky planner and how this film was about Sully and Mike before they worked at Monsters Inc. I reassured her that it wasn't scary inside the cinema and that she had been before. We went inside and bought a drink (no popcorn today). We went to the loo (I'm not a total novice - ok ok stop laughing) and found our seats.
It appears that the cinema must have been overrun by an infestation of ants because Katie certainly seemed to have lots of them in her pants throughout the entire film. They must have also played havoc with her bladder because the child that never usually goes to the toilet much during the day desperately needed to go halfway through the film and appeared to want to go again 30 minutes later, except the second time Mummy said no! She climbed on her chair; she climbed on me; she looked around at everyone else in the cinema and commented on what everyone was doing and asked every 5 minutes "Is it nearly the end?"
I quite enjoyed the film myself. I'll probably enjoy it more when I get to see it properly though.
Mummy was feeling pretty pissed off by the end of the film.
We went home for tea.
She ate her tea nicely (so I'm told by Daddy - I escaped off to the shops with the excuse of needing my Lactofree milk and for a bottle of wine and some Guylian chocolates). She was getting hyper again by about 5.30pm and Pip hadn't slept well whilst I was gone so Daddy and I decided an early bedtime was required and wondered whether today was too much to ask the first week back after the school holidays and maybe Katie was just too tired to manage it all? Maybe I should that thought about that when promising our lovely *cough* day out.
Bit by bit we watched Katie work herself up. She was dramatic about getting in the bath because of a sore ankle. She annoyed Pip in the bath so I got him out and got him ready for bed. Whilst I was feeding him his night-time bottle Daddy came up to help get Katie out of the bath and then all hell broke loose. Katie didn't want Daddy to get her out of the bath. She kicked and screamed and spat at him and generally lost it big time. From then on it's a bit of a blur. Katie stormed into Pip's room at one point where the cats were taking refuge and picked Willow up and threw her down on the floor. I'm afraid I shouted at that point for her to get out of Pip's room. I finished sorting Pip out and got him into bed. He takes all this in his stride. In fact he made me chuckle because all the time he was drinking his milk he was waving his arm at the door as if to say "Night Night Katie" or maybe "Go away shouty and screamy one".
I then tagged teamed Daddy and took over. Katie was kicking off that she wasn't getting a story. I tried the labelling again, with more success this time and slowly she calmed down. Eventually she was calm enough to go down and say sorry to Daddy and we read a quick story and did our bedtime routine. I wanted to say no to all of our usuals but felt that I would be cutting off my nose to spite my face if I did that.
Main objective: Get Her Into Bed and Asleep!
After one false start where she came back down again, she went to bed.
So Daddy and I are now trying to fathom out what went wrong today. Was it just all too much after the start of school and Katie was over-tired from the week or was something else going on? Did Katie want to sabotage a nice day or did she just get so upset over the shoes that she couldn't get over it all day? Probably a combination of all three I suspect.
All I know for sure now is that my evening involves Fahitas; a bottle of Prosecco and those Guylian chocolates and I'll see what tomorrow brings.
Maybe I might need some Migraleve as well.........