Did I really just pack my husband’s suitcase?

To do today:

Check husband’s suitcase is packed for business trip. (Note to self: Throw away any boxers with holes in them. Why? Because, if God forbid, he is in an accident and ends up in hospital the paramedics might judge me as a bad wife).

Phone Melanie Hartgill, educational psychologist, and beg for an appointment for dyslexia testing for three small people. I might be paranoid, but my daughter can’t repeat spaghetti and Small boy aged 8 only reads phonetically (Note to self: Sound calm, cool and collected, mildly annoyed and not at all paranoid!).

Visit overpriced educational toyshop (Note to self: Would turning on subtitles in videos help child learn to read – think French subtitled movies – subliminal learning. Do they make hypnosis tapes for kids? Find out.)

Hone Photoshop skills making word/picture card games.

Spend 1 hour reading with small boy aged 8 and testing him on comprehension (Question: WHEN? Between midnight and 1?).

Horror, I just reread the first item on my list. When did this start? This packing of husband’s suitcase? Do I have an inner 1950s wife lurking under this brash 21st century exterior? Breathe. Temporary aberration. That’s all. Nothing serious. Nausea will pass.

Even if I did not work I cannot imagine when parents are expected to find the time to all the extra stuff teachers expect us to. Take Small boy aged 8; he starts school at 07:15 and does sport until 15:00 or 16:00 every day but Friday. By the time he reaches home just getting out the car, shovelling food in his mouth and bathing is about the extent of his remaining energy. They tell me he must be in bed by 20:00, which leaves about 10 minutes to educate him on the finer point of calculus, binomial equations and Shakespeare. No wonder he mutters his spelling and practices karate katas in his sleep.

Long-suffering husband is off to Limpopo for a leadership conference today and returns to the fold on Friday evening. The current power structure in our home now reads: God, Small girl aged 5, Small boy aged 8, Small boy aged 5, Mummy. Thank God half term starts tomorrow. Bugger! (Note to self: Do not forget birthday party tomorrow afternoon for Small boy aged 5, buy present (educational?) and beg Granny to do lifting.)

Thanks to Crackberry I made it in time to the parent-teachers meeting yesterday with Small girl aged 5’s teacher, Jenny. Jenny has had enough and is buggering off at the end of term. However, Small girl aged 5 in her estimation is doing fine, she can do 36 piece puzzles, which is apparently a milestone a mother should ooh and aah over. Who knew? And she can sing! All that singing aloud loudly in the car to Kid Rock and Joan Baez must be rubbing off on her.

Apparently I also need to do something called IFRS. I have no idea what it is, but it sounds complicated and boring. Also must remember to do invoicing or will not get paid. February has got to be the longest and most cash-poor month of the year, largely I suspect because of January school fees, extra murals, uniforms and so on. Payday can’t come soon enough. I want to go to the spa, have a massage, a facial, a haircut, buy shoes for Small girl aged 5, and earrings for same, but most of all I want my car to run something other than the force of my willpower.

Speaking of which, I drove the man of the house’s car to work today. It was unpleasant. In a Ford Fiesta one blends into the morass of humanity seething to work along our highways and byways. You don’t drive it either, you just point and steer with minimal effort. I am driving this car because husband pointed out all very noble and practical reasons to do so: fuel economy, safety and blah, blah, blah. Bella, on the other hand, my 1975 VW Toaster is a joy to drive. For one thing you actually drive her, for this paragon of German engineering is a machine, not a computer pretending to be one. She has no artificial intelligence or any artifice. In her, I stand out, people wave and smile at me, Florence the traffic cop waves me through the morass of cars getting out of my suburb. Not in a Ford bloody Fiesta in which I am a mere shadow in a world of shadows whereas in Bella I am a technicolour rainbow!

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