Alpine Mummy

A new life in the middle of nowhere


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Secrets and lies

The other night I awoke to strange whisperings coming from Alpine Boy’s room. Pulling my ratty dressing gown around me I shuffled to his bedroom door, and was amazed to hear the following coming from within.

Now it all makes sense… every last bit.

I jotted it down, word for word, to pass on to other parents who, like me, are at the end of their tether and wondering why their kids are such brats. Here it is, take note; now the secret’s out, parenting will be a piece of cake…

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Eat, Poo, Love

Well Alpine Baby is here! Our beautiful girl made her way into the world at the end of March, bringing with her a sense of family completeness, total happiness, and constant sleeplessness.

She’s already a true Daddy’s Girl – with a headful of dark brown hair she looks nothing like me or either of my other children, and I’m constantly waiting to be stopped in the street and accused of kidnapping her whenever Alpine Papa’s not with us.

 alpinebaby

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The nine circles of hell (otherwise known as… pregnancy)

 As Alpine Papa will attest, I am not very good at being pregnant.  Not at all. 

You know those people who glow their way through pregnancy like a sunbeam, with nothing to slow them down except too much damn gushing about how they “luuuurve being pregnant” and “isn’t it amaaaaaazing”?  That’s not me.  Not at all.

Don't get confused - that's a sunbeam, that is, it's not me...

Don’t get confused – that’s a sunbeam, that is, it’s not me…

Alpine Papa is no help.  I don’t think he believes any of the suffering I am genuinely going through to bring this beautiful new life into the world.  In fact, when I moan (admittedly for the 40th time that day) about how crap being preggars is, he immediately takes great delight in pointing out how desperately I wanted to be pregnant each time, and how I would whine any time anyone I knew would dare get pregnant before me.  “Ooooh , it’s not fair”, he mocks (apparently that’s how I talk).  “So-and-so is pregnant, how come I’m not pregnant? I want to be pregnant. It’s not faaaaaaaair.  Why can’t I be pregnant? I want to be pregnant!”.

I would like to point out, though, that he is wrong.  Very.  I have never said “I want to be pregnant”, or moaned about not being. I have often whined about the fact that I want another baby and I want it now.  But that’s entirely different.  I have never had any desire to be pregnant. Why would I? It’s rubbish.

Hell in fact.  Nine months of hell.  Must have been what Dante had in mind.  Here are my nine circles of hell:

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I’m doing OK. Really.

I was speaking to my oldest friend on the phone the other day when she asked me how I was doing.    Genuinely.  She didn’t want a flippant answer about how everything is fine.   She really wanted to know if I was OK.

And I answered honestly – I am.  I really am…     Continue reading


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Making a good impression. Oh yes.

Summer is coming to an end, and I’m starting to panic about quite what it’s going to be like here in November, in the middle of nowhere, in the cold and wet… But, rather than sit at home dwelling on that, I’m rapidly trying to cram as much as possible into these last few days (and hoping that I’m wrong, and summer is going to stick around for a few more weeks yet). Get me, what positivity!

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How to leave the house in less than three hours*

Before babies, I never seemed to have a problem leaving the house.  I’ve never been particularly organised, and I was always maybe a teeny bit (let’s say “fashionably”) late, but I was able to leave the house in, say, 15 minutes if my lie-in required it.  During those 15 minutes I would even manage to brush my hair and slap on some make-up (both a distant memory these days…).

So it was a bit of a shock when Alpine Boy was born and I realised that leaving the house was in fact a military operation.   I soon worked out that if I wanted to go out at a certain time, I would have to start getting ready an hour before.  At least.  If I wanted to wash my hair we were looking at another hour.  Gradually, as time went on (and as he grew out of needing huge amounts of stuff everywhere we went) I perfected my preparation skills and, by the time he was three, I was a lean, mean, house-leaving machine (and longer lie-ins returned, hurrah).

But now that Alpine Girl has joined our happy family we’re (nearly) back to point zero – yet again it takes forever to rally the troops, pack the bags, feed and change the baby, and actually walk out the door.  In general (and thanks to the miracle that is dry-shampoo), I’ve managed to speed it up to 30 minutes of preparation time, on a good day.  Monday was not a good day.

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It’s suppositories here, Madame, not Calpol

Considering we’re only a frog’s hop away from the UK, I’m always surprised by the (sometimes tiny, sometimes huge) differences in habits and culture and, well, just in the way things are done.  (Incidentally, I am compiling a list of those things which are better in France and those which are better in the UK, with a view to buying an island and founding my very own Franco-Anglo utopia combining the best of both worlds.  But that’s a blog for another day.)

In the meantime, a petit example of such a phenomenon presented itself the other week, when I finally managed to take Alpine Girl for her first vaccinations.

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