“Mummy! Mummy!” – my six o’clock wake up call sounds the same every morning, with my four-year-old son calling out for me from his bed. I know that if I don’t go over to tell him to be quiet, he will fuss and wake the whole household. If I brave the morning chill, I might be able to squeeze in another ten minutes of peace. 

Pulling back the blankets, I swung my legs to the side of the bed and stood up. Then I fell to the ground in a crumpled heap. My legs were not doing what I thought my brain was telling those porkchops to do. 

“ARGH!!!!” My son’s morning whinge might not have woken anyone yet, but my screams of agony certainly would have done the trick.

Three worried pairs of eyes peered over my prone body.

“What’s wrong with Mummy?!”

“Mum, what happened to your foot?”

“Are you ok?”

On occasion, I’ve woken up with pins and needles in my limbs and have collapsed getting out of bed. Never have I fallen in such an awkward position that I’ve injured myself in the process. Unlucky for me, I fell forwards and bent the toes on my right foot upwards. I wasn’t sure if the toes were broken or sprained but it hurt – BAD. Other than grab my foot, I could only manage to whimper in pain. After I had managed to collect myself, we examined my foot and came to the conclusion that if I could wriggle my toes, it probably wasn’t broken. To the kids, the excitement was over. 

“Mummy, I’m hungry!”

“Mummy, can you make me a toastie?”

“I’ve got to get ready for work.”

It was time to get back to Mum duties, bruised toes or not. So I hobbled about to get things done.

“Mummy, can you pick that up?”

“Mummy, can you get my water bottle from my room?”

“Mummy, can you get me a snack?”

“Mummy, can you wipe my bottom?”

Have I mentioned that being a parent is a thankless job? 

“I have broken (maybe) toes you know!” I had to remind everyone that I was an injured person and perhaps people could cut me some Mum slack and go do things themselves. I dread thinking how anyone would cope if I was really out of action. Dropped items would stay dropped, water bottles would never get refilled, no one would do a poop. 

Anyway, I’m sure you are all thoughtful folks and want to know how my toes are faring, right? I am unhappy to report I am back to 90% servant/cleaner/cook duties. Maybe if I want a break from Mum duties next time I’m injured, I’ll need both hands broken.

Copyright © 2021, KN J Tales and Snippets. All rights reserved.



I have never understood the appeal of family road trips. I mean, in theory, it does sound nice to spend some time with family without the interruption of phones, TVs, computers and general busyness of life. It also sounds nice to use the time to do things that you might not otherwise do. You can read books, catch up on sleep, do puzzles and card games…

But honestly, what’s the reality here?

If you have children, expect to hear “Are we there yet?” on repeat like a broken record.

Most, if not all of you probably live at the same residence, so what’s the chances of anyone having anything new to say? And if by chance, you do have something to add to the conversation, there won’t be hours worth of content.

You’re in a confined space with no escape. Problematic if there are belchers, farters or annoying siblings with knee jerk reflex issues. Imagine being in a car with these people for several hours; it’ll test the patience of a saint.

There are minimal bathroom breaks so you can’t be drinking too much liquid or risk the embarrassment of roadside bush prickles in your butt and indecent exposure. Plus no-one wants to be tooted by a passerby.

More importantly, to us at least, road trips means sharing music space. No one listens to their own music with solo headphones because there’s no fun in that. So, it can get quite heated in the car with everyone dissing on each other’s musical choices.

Our latest road trip took a total of seven hours, so we devised a “fair” system where each person got to choose a song of their choice to be played upon their turn.

My four-year-old son was happy to forfeit his turns to his eight-year-old sister, who tortured us with Disney songs from the movie Descendants. Although, I’d never admit this to the husband but l kind of like the sickly sweet and catchy pop songs.

My husband chose Barry Manilow’s Mandy and did a silly Dad rendition, an ode to our daughter’s name. It wasn’t a surprise that the children pretended to vomit and yelled out “Yuck!” He followed up with songs from Wig Wam, Diablo, The Darkness and Iron Maiden.

I’m not a fan of heavy metal or rock bands but the husband believes he is “expanding” the children’s musical tastes. He’s actually had some success. One of our daughter’s favourite songs is “Sandstorm” by Darude. He’s even gotten our daughter into Gloryhammer!

I like mainstream music. I don’t mind pop, hip/hop, R&B, country, indie or dance. I don’t know what that says about my personality other than I’m easy. Instead of going for current chart songs, I went with the classics. I chose Gloria’s “I Will Survive” because it has hooks that are catchier than covid. Tina Turner’s “What’s Love Got to Do with It” and Bee Gees’ “Stayin’ Alive” made the cut. Not a single person enjoyed my selections. It really says more about them than me, right??

Eventually, we got sick of playing musical merry-go-round and left Ballad Collection by X Japan on for the rest of the road trip. Our son stopped asking “Are we there yet?” and fell asleep. Our daughter pulled out a few books and was content for several hours.

With three long hours of the road trip left, no bickering over song choices and quiet from the children, I found myself moaning… “Are we almost there yet?”

Copyright © 2021, KN J Tales and Snippets. All rights reserved.



I’m feeling rather upset at the moment. I’m eating a bag of Flamin’ Hot Cheeto Puffs, that’s how emotional I’m feeling.

Today was the last day of kinder, and parents were invited into the playground to watch the children sing Christmas carols. My four-year-old boy was the only child who couldn’t sit on the ground, continually moving about and being disruptive. At one point, he crowded and poked another boy, causing the poor child to cry. I had to take him away from the group and seat him elsewhere. Mortification doesn’t properly describe how I felt at being the parent of THAT kid. It really didn’t help that every other parent was filming my son’s poor behaviour and my embarrassment.

After the performance, the kinder teacher gave me feedback on my son. This was the first time I had stepped into kinder due to pandemic lockdown and restrictions. It was also the first time kinder has been able to give me any kind of feedback.

“You might want to keep an eye on his behaviour next year.”

“He’s having problems with making social connections.”

“He has poked and shoved kids then run away. He has toppled over a child’s tower and run away. He takes toys from other kids when they are playing with them.”

I attempted making excuses for his antisocial behaviour; the pandemic and strict lockdown, his negative behaviour in seeking his sister’s attention. In my heart, I couldn’t commit to any of these possible excuses, even if they were true. It just felt lame. I knew he had displayed aggressive and troubling behaviour but I had thought it was confined to home. I push aside that niggling feeling to the back of my mind because I didn’t want to deal with it. I hoped he’d outgrow this stage. How naïve was I?

Where did I go wrong? Have I babied him too much? Is his behaviour a result of my poor discipline and lack of follow-through? Is it too much screen time? Should I have forced the issue with vegetables?

My husband pish-poshed my idea of seeking help with a therapist. Why not get an expert’s opinion? But he seems to think raising the issue on our next maternal health check with the nurse is enough. He wants us to work on our son’s antisocial behaviour through how we parent. I will work on getting our son to become more independent and following through when I discipline. My husband will re-iterate the importance of positive behaviour and together we will cut screen time.

I feel emotionally wrecked and so disappointed. I can’t help but feel as though my son’s behaviour is reflective of my parenting. It honestly makes me feel like a failure of a parent.

I’m unsure how things will pan out but I pray that our son will get better at making positive social connections. It would break my heart to see my cheeky little boy end up friendless and an outlier in society.

Copyright © 2020, KN J Tales and Snippets. All rights reserved.