(Popping eight teeth at the same time. 4 premolars, 4 canines. God in heaven help us.)

(He was watching "Cars".)

(Yes, on his own.)

(That bottom lip is gonna kill me one day.)

...and a big stinky sore nipple comes along and bites you on the butt. Or, it comes along and you think to yourself "OH MY GOD I WOULD SOONER BY IN LABOUR AGAIN THAN DO THIS PAIN GAHHHHHHHHH".

Somehow, when I wasn't paying attention/forgot the Lansinoh/was being lazy, Left Boob went and decided to do that uncomfortable shredded thing where it looks like Freddy Kreuger decided to find the most unorthodox way into your bra. Sadly it means I'm reminded of how I dealt with Noah in his first 6 weeks

Today Isaac had the joy of trying out a nipple condom, which proved to be freaking horrendous. Yeah, when he keeps latching on because he can't get a good "grip" (seriously), it kind of causes a bit more trauma. And because I am the Queen of All That Is Chicken-Shit, Right Boob is quite colossal because I've been feeding Isaac mostly on that one. Feed more milk to get more milk, right? Yes yes, I know I should feed him normally on both, yaddah yaddah, but I'd like to see you take a Stanley knife and some lemon juice/vinegar/salt to yer nipple and keep smiling.*

So here I sit, boob hanging out, smothered in breast milk and Lansinoh, hoping that I don't find the nipple at the foot of the bed in the morning. Lovely.

*I'd rather you didn't, because if it really IS anything like what I'm dealing with, then it sure as hell ain't fun.
In the UK, right now, there is a Swine Flu pandemic. Everyone is crapping themselves about it. The NHS released a new fandangled website today to see if you have it; check the list of symptoms and discover if you'll be oinking for a few days. Nice how, since it came online, the service has been "too busy" to actually work. FAIL.

And whilst sitting here on my very poorly behind (my hips and pelvis are STILL hurting a LOT), it suddenly occurred to me that the signs and symptoms I had read up, sounded very familiar.

headache - check.
tiredness - check.
chills - not so much.
aching muscles - check.
limb or joint pain - check.
diarrhoea or stomach upset - nope.
sore throat - check.
runny nose - check.
sneezing - check.
loss of appetite - check.

So I thought, 'hmmm...that can't be good...' and then realised that Noah was also showing many of the same symptoms (he's been a regular roller coaster of fun these last few days). So I have decided, much to my amusement, that we have swine flu. I've been checking that website all day, and am yet to be able to do the fancy crap whatever-it-is they're advertising (some kind of antibiotic which I should probably pay attention to). Although Noah, whilst suffering another bout of Facial Orifice Fluid, now seems to be reverting to his crazy chirpy mad-kid self.

Amazingly, Isaac seems to be the only one who is still non piggy-like, although, he uh, sneezes a lot lately (clutching at straws) so I'm willing to say that somehow, by the power of Boob Juice, he doesn't have it (like how he didn't catch chicken pox while Noah caught it TWICE. Yes. TWICE).

Meh, it's ok. My kids are too cool and too cute for the likes of swine flu.
Last Friday we had an offer on the house. It wasn't quite as much as we'd hoped (£5k less) but you know what? It's an offer. And we accepted!! Hoorah!!

So we spent the weekend frantically trawling the internet looking for properties to go and view, and MAN did we trawl. We printed off, we compared, we even drove round and had a look at some from the outside.


And then yesterday? The Estate Agents called. And said Mrs Buckingham (YES, I am naming and shaming, and I don't give a rats ass) has withdrawn her offer. She has put an offer on another property which has now become available again, and she would like to go for that one instead. So in short, thanks, but no thanks.

I am livid. She kept us dangling like fucking idiots all weekend, until she knew which property she could definitely have, felt she could pick and choose. I spent most of yesterday in tears; I was having a bad day anyway - my right leg and hip is slowly but surely getting worse, I hadn't eaten ANYTHING, the doorbell was going every few minutes and I was slowly going batshit.

So we're back to square one - on the market looking for buyers. We're about to switch agents; our current agents aren't the most helpful...so I guess we see how it goes. How people can screw others around like that is just beyond me.
Last week D and I took ourselves on a champagne filled trip to London. And swear on my cats butt, it was the best trip to London EVAH!!

We left on Thursday morning and travelled 1st Class Virgin Pendolino (they make me feel sick to my stomach but they're so much fun), arrived in London and took the tube over to Knightsbridge, home of Harrods, (HARRODS OMG HARRODS SWEET LORD HARRODS) and our hotel, Jumeirah Carlton Tower. I can't even begin with how gorgeous the hotel was. HELL yeah.

Unfortunately, on the train I realised I had forgotten to pack my lurvely new Fiorelli bag at home, and was thoroughly pissed of with myself (I secretly cried a little; the girlie-girl within me had been looking forward to "wearing" it with the spank-me-ms-secretary shoes and hanging-on-by-boobs-alone dress).

So D decided we should go look round the Harrods sale.

Oh. My. God.

You'd think I would have had a field day in Harrods, and I swear I nearly did. But you know what? I fast realised that DKNY, Versace, Mulberry and all the rest of it just wasn't my style. Yes that's right, I TURNED DOWN bags in the middle of Harrods. Do you know what we ended up doing? Going over to John Lewis on Regent and Oxford, where I bought a Tula bag I'd been eyeing up the previous week (it was either Tula or Fiorelli; I chose Fiorelli because it was luuuurbely {and yes I do mean luuuurbely} and soft yum and was gorgeous with my outfit).

We went out to Gordon Ramsay's restaurant and ordered a glass of vintage champagne each, the Menu Prestige (7 courses), and a glass of wine for each course. Oh hell yes.

Pressed foie gras with Madeira jelly, smoked duck, peach and almond crumble

Ravioli of lobster, langoustine and salmon with tomato chutney, vinaigrette

Fillet of turbot with braised baby gem lettuce, leeks and cep sauce

Cannon of Cornish lamb with confit shoulder, ratatouille and thyme jus

Pre dessert something-or-other

Strawberry, Champagne and elderflower soup with vanilla cream

Strawberry chocolate balls thingies

Needless to say I've hawked most of this direct from his website because I can't find our exact menu right now. You don't even care, all you need to know is that the food was gooooooooood.

We had more champagne after this at the restaurant and then went back to the hotel for even more champagne.

I am able to sum up my evening in the following pictures and tweets.

Dessert (in non-fancy terms): Strawberry ice-cream balls coated in white chocolate and served on dry ice, hence the weird smokey stuff (to stop them from melting. I at 10 of them. And there's only 4 in a dish at a time. What can I say? They just kept bringing them).

The weird tree thing with balls on it next to the dish, they're chocolate coco balls coated in some shiny fancy fondant stuff. Very tasty.

Back at the hotel in the Gilt Champagne Bar, drinking, you guessed it, more champagne cocktails.

Said champagne cocktails. God only knows what was in them. I do remember eating D's flower. Inside a champagne glass.

Nothing like a semi-drunken pose.

"Hello twitter i an tweeting from mobile sat in hotel brinking cocktail champagnk eatin nuts n oliver. VERY GOOD might yup"

I would say that's quite self explanatory.

Some uh, decor. (Strings of massive bauble bead things against a mirror. Very dangerous/enticing to any drunken person.)

"I have on one shoe"

The said Spank-Me-Ms-Secretary shoes, which are verrrrry lovely. I did of course, find the other shoe. I have no idea how I ended up removing only one shoe though.

Shortly after taking lots of very random pictures, D went to the loo and pulled a hooker on the way (she back tracked to go and wink at him. That's my boy). I managed to ruin some other guy's night by talking to his call girl for a good 45 minutes, telling her "no she didn't need bigger boobs" and also to "think more about her 6 year old daughter" that she had told me about. The guy she was with had buggered off to the bar to chat up other women; he looked non too impressed when he came back to her and heard what we were talking about. Having said that, I may have cost her some good money that night too.

...man, D and I were on FIRE!!!

I vaguely remember going upstairs to our room and sitting on a chair with my feet up on the bed. I whipped out my breast pump, got a bottle of water and fell asleep right there. Amazingly (although only out for maybe 20 minutes) I didn't spill any milk and was able to guzzle some water and get into bed. I think this may have been around 3 a.m.

The next day, we fell out of bed sometime around 9 a.m. Amazingly I didn't have a hangover (possibly because I may still have been drunk) but my stomach did churn a little at the bottle and pump of breast milk that was still sitting beside the bed, from the previous night. Mmmmm, yummy, curdling, rancid champagne-milk anyone?

We went and had a colossal freshly cooked fry up breakfast, with tons of fruit, juice and other assorted goodies from the breakfast buffet, packed our bags and rolled out of the hotel. (Fresh air hit, more certain I was still drunk.) With over two hours to kill, we headed back to Harrods. Of course.

Where I did everything I could not to buy another bag.

I did buy some very nice shoes though. Ramses Birkenstocks, stone coloured. Am pleased. And have happy feet. What can I say? After walking around in the Spank-Me-Ms-Secretary shoes the previous day, my feet needed tlc.

And uh, we needed more champagne so we headed over to the Veuve Cliquot Ponsardin bar in Harrods and had lunch, with, oh yeah! Another glass of champagne. (Wonderfully, I had just gotten sober by this point, so I knew I'd pretty much cope. And besides, Harrods sales can be VERY sobering.)

Battling our way through underground tubes to catch our train home was NOT fun however, what with delays on the Picadilly line, and uh, here is our train home.

Which we very much missed.
D and I have been out on a date already since Isaac was born. We went to Simpson's, and I drank as much as I wanted. And ate a 7 course menu. And loved. Every. Minute.

This week, we're heading down to London to go and stay at Jumeirah Carlton Tower, and eat at Gordon Ramsay's The Restaurant. I have new clothes, kick-ass spank-me shoes and a new bag. I haven't slimmed down for it, and I'm not bothered. We're staying one night and I can't wait.

Next week we've booked a date to go and see Harry Potter 6 when it's out on the 15th at the cinema, and yes we're going to a late night showing. We wonder if we'll be home before 1 a.m.

Last night I did my first concert in a while, as principal cellist. It was hard work but not in ways that you'd expect. And it has left me in the same position as before; seriously wondering if I want to go back to playing full time. I don't think I do. And I think I'm ok with that.

In the freezer I have around 140 fl.oz of expressed boob juice, ready to go for Isaac whenever I am absent for whatever reason. And yes, 140 fl.oz is nearly 4 litres. I've been hoarding since day one, have dipped into supplies already, and have run out of room to store any more milk in the freezer. I can give my kid the best I can, and yet still live a life doing things I like to try and do. And that's freaking awesome.

I've done several mornings, half days and full days of looking after both boys on my own. For a long time I thought I'd never be able to do it, and dreaded the day when I knew I'd have to do it all on my own. I know moms do it all the time, they just get on with it. But I had my own fears. And despite having days when I wasn't sure any of us were going to make it through alive (and yes that includes the boys), I live to wear my Mom-of-Two badge with pride.

I can't believe how much I'm enjoying it. Sure it's early days, I know the shit will indeed hit the fan, there will be times when I will repeatedly pull my hair out, or scream myself hoarse, or be convinced that I am SO not cut out to be a good mom of two, but that's where we're at, and I like it right now.
About pregnancy, labour and being a new mother. There are lots of things. Sure they tell you lots of some things. Mostly the ok-ish things. They like to share their own horror stories. But there are some horror stories that dare not be shared. Like the following.

Expect your baby to barf so often you may change your clothes every freaking hour. And then extra because it's too hot and you've worn all your vests and t-shirts and only have roll neck winter woolly jumpers left.

You'll change your kids clothes twice as often as yourself, just to make sure that they still look cool/clean/colour co-ordinated/vaguely presentable.

It may take approximately 6 years for your stomach to look like a stomach. Mainly because you've carried over 20lbs of baby in there and your stomach muscles haven't seen each other for a while, thanks to the fab hernia you now have.

Your pelvic floor - oh wait, you no longer have one.

Hemorrhoids - they are your new best friend, and you wonder if you'll ever have sex again for fear of wondering if there are "three or more of you" in the bed.

Your kid gets Chicken Pox, and then somehow gets it again, and you'll wonder what the outside world is like, and whether it even still looks the same.

Sleeping - Your children may not do it as often as you'd like/think/ever.

You'll crave sleep, and when you do get the chance to sleep, you'll do everything from doing the laundry to cleaning the oven, instead of getting sleep. Because every ounce of common sense will have left your body.

The "Terrible Twos" is a load of bollocks. It's actually the "Terrible Whenever-The-Hell-I-Like, Deal With It Bitch, It's Gonna Happen". And those tantrums will probably break you, over and over again.

They say baby blues lasts a short while and post natal depression can last for ages but you'll be fine in the long run with both. Both will leave you feeling like shit, you'll question your parenting skills and will be convinced your newborn child, who doesn't even know what hate is, will despise and loathe your very soul for feeding it two minutes later than normal.

However, what they also don't tell you is how cute you think it is when you put your two kids in the bath and one splashes, hugs and kisses the other.

They also don't tell you how awesome it is when you suddenly realise your totally contented kid has fallen asleep peacefully on your lap and is snoring lightly.

Or how great you feel when they babble "mummmmm muummmmmmummmm" and look directly at you when they do it.

They forget to mention how much you almost want to explode when your kid is on your partner's lap, and kiddo calls you over to come join in a three-way cuddle.