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Single Parenting

3 October, 2014 at 11:43 pm by belgianwaffle

Last week I went to Florence for work (not at all the kind of place I normally go to for work). Saturday was the boys’ birthday. This meant that on Friday afternoon, I was in my conference in the Palazzo Vecchio admiring the beautiful ceiling in the Sala dei Cinquecento and on Saturday, I was in an indoor play centre with a dozen small children who were playing quasar with great enthusiasm. The play centre was horribly loud and deeply unpleasant (though, happily, loved by the children). It featured a pizza joint called Dante’s. Please insert your own joke here bearing in mind the Florentine angle. I’ve given you a lot to work with.

Florence was very beautiful though neck deep in tourists. The Florentines must be sick of us. I spent a month in Florence in 1988 but retained almost no memory of my time there. I certainly don’t remember it being so lovely. Nor do I remember the Florentines all pronouncing their Cs as Hs which they famously do. My favourite example of this was my taxi driver answering his phone saying, “Hlaudio, home stai?” In the late 80s and early 90s I spent a lot of time in Italy and one thing that has really changed (aside from the fact that I am now signora to everyone) is the number of people on bicycles. Florence is full of people sailing around on their bicycles and weaving through pedestrians while looking very elegant. There was no evidence of lycra but plenty of normal cycling to get from a to b. I was very taken with it.

Have some photos.

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While I was off gallivanting, Mr. Waffle kept the home fires burning. Then, this week, Mr. Waffle was in Helsinki (the Waffles, we cover the continent – I might point out that my brother in law and his wife were in the South of France at the weekend and my sister-in-law and her husband were in South Carolina for the week – the extended family has essentially caused many of the polar ice cap issues).

This week was a bit tough on the boys. We visited a possible secondary school for Herself on Wednesday night and they tagged along and read their books, then on Thursday night they tagged along to choir with her. They were mildly bitter but broadly very patient and well behaved. I am kind of flattened from the sandwich making and logistics. Also, humiliatingly, on Wednesday night I got scared by a Skulduggery Pleasant short story and had to spend an hour reading Georgette Heyer before I could finally go to sleep alone in the dark about 1.30 am. Look, don’t mock the afflicted. All in all, I am very relieved to have my loving husband restored to me.

Single parents are amazing.

Happy Anniversary

28 July, 2014 at 12:05 pm by belgianwaffle

Mr. Waffle and I are married 13 years today. Which is ages. Go us.

Here is some dialogue to explain why Mr. Waffle is perfect.

Daniel: If you could have a superpower, what would it be?
Mr. Waffle: Maybe flying, that would be cool.
Daniel: If you couldn’t fly, what would you pick?
Mr. Waffle: Controlling the weather.
Daniel: Why?
Mr. Waffle: Then I could always get my laundry dry.

Seriously, what’s not to love?

Email from Husband

22 July, 2014 at 12:33 pm by belgianwaffle

Subject: Wretched Cat

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It’s like a morgue here.

There’s a Rat in my Kitchen

21 July, 2014 at 1:41 pm by belgianwaffle

Well not actually in the kitchen but lying outside the kitchen window. It was so enormous and sleek and healthy looking in a fetching shade of grey that I thought it was a soft toy which the children had left out overnight.

Closer inspection revealed that it was a huge dead rat stretched out in rigor mortis. I can only assume that the cat caught it but decided in her infinite mercy not to bring it into the kitchen or under the stairs. How did I deal with this? Well, I called my husband (rather shrilly) to dispose of the corpse and ran to get my phone to photograph it for you but by the time I came back, the body was gone and Mr. Waffle was washing his hands. He’s a fast operator. It’s in the bin out the front but I don’t think I’ll be fishing it out to pose for pictures.

And how has your day been so far?

Unrelated: Happy Belgian National Day!

Feel the Fear and Do it Anyway

20 June, 2014 at 11:06 pm by belgianwaffle

Mr Waffle took the children zipwiring in the Dublin mountains. Where will this madness end?

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Foraging for Food

5 June, 2014 at 6:45 pm by belgianwaffle

Mr. Waffle is away for a couple of days and standards have slipped. The children say, in great excitement, “Are we foraging for dinner?” This consists of staring at the contents of the fridge/freezer and hauling out what appeals. Tonight the Princess, upholder of standards, has promised to make us chicken rissoles from Monday’s leftover chicken. I think, however, we all feel that the return of Mr. Waffle will be a good thing.

Blood and Gore

4 June, 2014 at 10:13 pm by belgianwaffle

My loving husband was virtuously cleaning the cooker one morning and managed to give himself a knock on the overhead extractor which led to him bleeding copiously all over the kitchen floor and down the side of his face in a very dramatic manner. The children and I were very alarmed. No more cooker cleaning for him.

In other – admittedly tenuously connected – blood on the kitchen floor stories, the cat caught a blackbird and brought it into the house. A blackbird is quite a big bird to have in the house, particularly when a cat is haring after it in delight. The childminder and the children ran out of the house and shouted at the cat and the bird through the kitchen window with results such as you might expect. The childminder rang Mr. Waffle for directions on opening the kitchen window (trickier than you might think – particularly from outside). The Princess bravely ventured in and scooped up the cat and locked her into Michael’s room to the cat’s intense chagrin. The bird lay behind the kettle with a wing stuck out at an odd angle. The kitchen was plastered with blood and feathers. The childminder and the boys went to inspect the damage and the bird, like something from a creepy horror movie, sprang up on its feet and gave them heart failure. It began to fly again just as Mr. Waffle, feeling that support was needed on the home front, came back so he was able to help usher it out the window. Then he set to clearing up blood and feathers so that by the time I got home from work all that remained was a dramatic story and small feathers which turned up for quite a while in the oddest places. Is he not a saint?

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Cat looking as though butter wouldn’t melt in her mouth.


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