Boys, boys, boys!
We have a household of boys. Seven of them. Some days I feel like I am an alien living amongst them.
Boys are funny, thoughtful, mischeviouss, messy, active, and very, very loud.
Boys don't notice the stuff going on around them; they tend to follow their nose.
"Oh look, food!"
"Oh look, the footy is on TV!"
"Oh look, I'm going to wrestle with my brother!"
The best part? All these thoughts appear within the same tenth of a second.
They don't overthink things, and it's painstakingly magical to witness.
"How was your day? What did you do?" is always followed by the same response, "Good. Nothing." That's it. End of conversation.
I've learned to embrace it.
We thought we had seen it all before our third son was born. We had already witnessed nappy cream rubbed into the carpets, drawing on the walls, jamming an arm between balustrades.
As per every parents' nightmare, we once caught our eldest son crawling up the driveway to the awaiting road at about one-years-old. We had never ran so fast! And that's when we knew we had super-human speed abilities - as does every parent.
When our middle child was born, we saw said child in the bottom of the shower, fully clothed, pouring shampoo and every other magical liquid available all over himself. He was as happy as a pig in mud.
But when our youngest son was born, Tom - aptly named the 'Tominator' as a toddler - we soon realised we were yet to experience the hurricane that is three boys.
I soon realised with three children aged 3-years and under that logistics and planning would become very important. It is very difficult to fit any food in a shopping trolley when you have three children in that trolley. If I let them out to walk next to me the two toddlers would run in different directions while I am left standing with the baby! My worst nightmare was watching them run and skid on their knees along the aisles of the supermarket. I had visions of them knocking a lovely 80-year-old lady off her feet and breaking a hip! Can’t really tiptoe away from that one!!
I tried once (only once!) to do a painting activity with all three boys at home, solo. I rolled out big sheets of butchers paper in the courtyard, set up the paints and encouraged the boys to nicely paint some pictures. In my mind it all seemed so innocent. It ended with (washable) paint being walked through the house where Archie stood in a paint tray. Jamie started painting Tom’s arms, and a crawling fully painted Tom eventually got inside. I actually locked them outside to contain it, but Jamie wisely got the spare key and unlocked the door. I was busy washing Archie’s feet and came out to find red hand prints all over the couch!
Never, ever again.
Not to mention the hilarities that come with words such as "poo" and "bums". Classy.
As much as I moan about the daily loads of washing, endless dishes and the constant mess in our house, I am also the Mum that cries silently behind her sunglasses at school assemblies or sports carnivals. Simply because I am proud. It gives me joy to see them thrive, learn and grow into beautiful, caring, strong men. And that's my biggest achievement.
Together with my husband and three sons we host three international students. These students (all boys) live amongst the chaos, come from various corners of the world and study in Perth. Over the past four-years these ‘big boys’ have shown my ‘little boys’ different languages and cultures, they seem to us like big brothers. I cook their meals and provide them with a home away from home. I try and provide a home that I would be happy to send my children to if they were to live and study in another country.
Currently we have Alex from China, Patrick from Zambia and Pedro from Brazil.