The Numbers Game

Posted: June 25, 2013 in Midlife Crisis in Maryhole

Parents to be can now relax, the Flashman Foursome is just around the corner. May go straight to print, an iPad app or a Reality TV show. One thing for sure is that road to my future is now gold paved after this takes off.

Was lucky enough to spend time with my 4 wonderful grandchildren over the last few days. Let me start off by saying what great parents my kids, and their spouses, have become. I sit back in awe at times to see how they have developed. Nature and instinct are amazing things. Now the kids range in age from 6 weeks to just shy of 4 so for the sake of simplicity lets just go with 0, 1,2 and 4. As the 6 week old is the only gal in the group gender bias will have to wait for Version 2 as we all know that the worrying and scary feminine traits only develop later in life when interacting with the male of the species. So why foursome? The 4 things parents should worry about are : how well do they sleep, how easy to feed, how hard to entertain, how scary to care (babysit) for? At the end each age group gets their Flashman Index™ and then you plan your life. All scores out of 10

Ground Zero

They sleep a lot but often in short or long bursts. A solid 9. Feeding doesnt get any easier – as long as you have a lactating woman on call 24/7. In deference to what women say about sore lady parts and feeling like a cow lets give it a 8. At this age they are usually sleeping, feeding or bawling. Get some ear muffs and strong arms and back and you will get by . They are easily distracted by bright shiny things but it is temporary 7. Ok can be a bit scary to look after ( without aforementioned necessary appendages) especially for the male of the species. One of those areas where maternal instinct really kicks in but across the board only a 5. Total 29


By this age we may still have good nights sleep and one or two daytime naps for that much needed break. Then we have to factor in teething which can bring all that to a grinding halt. 5 at best. They are now on solids of sorts but have also discovered the joy of throwing food. Easy to please though 8. They can sit, crawl and just about stand by now so they are rather easy to entertain but move from one thing to another. TV not really a viable option yet 7. Moderately easy to look after although you will have moments of non communication when all you get is crying and no words 8. Total 28


Interesting age often referred to as the Terrible Twos. Down to one afternoon nap by now and if dont get it look out. Will usually sleep ok at night but can be up early and raring to go 7. Its a growing phase so tend to eat well but can throw a tantrum or two and we are only advanced to basic words by now, the most popular one being, of course, NO. Call it a generous 7. By now they have discovered the joys of books and TV so there are plenty of options but attention span can suffer. 7. Caring for can be tricky if one of those tantrums kick in and the frustration grows on both sides as you cant decipher the grunts in correct order. Usually still nappies involved. This age really is the Jekyll and Hyde stage 6. Total 27

Four You may snag the odd afternoon nap break and will sleep through the night but can be hard to get to bed on time. 8. By now they can get picky at meal time and it can be a struggle as they can out stare you by now and have discovered the word “stubborn”. 6. Entertaining is pretty easy with so many options but you need to be fit as these kids can run all day. TV is the safe, though not ideal, option. 8. Caring for 4 year olds is a fairly safe, if tiring , option. There is usually Kindy or similar “break time” available and then we have swimming lessons, gazoo lessons yada yada yada 9 Total 31

So not surprisingly the older or younger the better – the gap years can be the tricky ones. And why would you care? Well you are planning an OS trip and wonder what is the best age to travel with kids? Tickets to the Opera? Dinner Party planned? Sex orgy?

Its all in the planning folks.

Especially with Sex Orgies. Apparently.

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