Tuesday, 30 March 2010

Confessions of the world's greatest babysitter

I babysat for my big sister's 3 kids on Saturday night. It is always a challenge. My sister's parenting style is different to mine. While I can't wait to get my kids into bed by 7.30pm, her bedtime "routine" stretches well into the night. I am not too sure of the full sequence of events, but over the years I have witnessed trampolining, bedtime dance-time, family songs, sweet milk and vitamins, stacks of books, and motivational CDs. She does have the world's worst sleeper as her oldest child, but still...

I got to her place at 8.15pm (they were off to a late movie). All three of the kids were still up (including Miss C who is yet to be 2). They had been at the beach all afternoon/evening and were, quite literally, bouncing off the walls. Sis assured me that they would be off to bed in the usual manner. I was equally sure they wouldn't. She did the rounds and slotted them all in. The bedside lamps of the 2 older kids were left on, Mr M had his latest motivational CD playing on rotation, and I was given instructions to turn the lamps out after 15mins (and to leave the hall light on).

I settled on the couch, checking out their new Tivo. After 15 mins, I went into the kids rooms. I checked Miss A who had conked out and was fast asleep hugging a menagerie of stuffed animals. A quick pull-up of the covers and she was off for the night. One down (8.30pm). Not bad.

I then checked on Mr M. He was wide awake. He assured me that he usually had a glass of water and got up to go to the toilet (in the family bathroom) before bed. As he has an ensuite in his room, I allowed him to use that, fill up his cup and then guided him back into bed. He protested. Tried it on, but in the end he wasn't any trouble and by 9pm he was asleep. 2 down. Unbelievable.

Lastly I checked on Baby A. She was fully asleep. I pulled up her covers and left quietly. All the kids asleep. 9pm. Whoa Hoo.

I decided to get myself something to snack on and then settle into some trashy mags before my planned nap on the couch. I was loving myself and the evening of quiet.

I opened the pantry door and was greeted by a packet of chocolate toffee coated macadamias. Macadamia nuts first coated in toffee and then quality milk chocolate. Oh my! I decided I could have a little taste. Biggest mistake. I had one. And then another. I closed the pantry door and returned to the couch, only to find myself back there getting another couple of nuts moments later. And then I had gotten halfway through the packet and I thought I could hide them at the back and they might not notice them. And then I had another couple. And then there were only 3 left and I thought, I may as well get rid of the evidence, maybe they won't miss them? I ate the lot! 150g of pure heaven. Weight Watchers? What's that? Oh my. Delicious. Awesome beyond explanation.

I spent from 10.30 -11.30 trapped on the toilet. Some would call this karma. I think it was just a mean prank of nature, but I get Irritable Bowel Syndrome and my daliance with the macadamias obviously triggered a bout. I was as sick as a dog. I was too 'tied up' (so to speak) to call my sister to warn her that I was incapable of looking after her children should anyone wake and need some adult intervention. I was just stuck and had to do what needed doing and hope that the kids would be all right. They were, luckily. Not a peep.

After an hour of hell, I struggled my way back to the couch where I resumed my plan for a nap. I promptly fell asleep and was woken when my sis and b-i-l returned from their date. I had to confess both my binge and subsequent "punishment". They were pretty understanding really (B-i-l had bought said chocolates for sis in Melbourne when he was down there last week, apparently a little ritual they have when they go there) which only made me feel worse.

So if anyone knows where I can buy some of those chocolates in Sydney, please let me know. I really should replace my sister's stash. I, on the other hand, won't be going there again.

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