Parenting, profundities and humour

Baby, I don’t care… * — August 3, 2017

Baby, I don’t care… *

* I love a bit of Transvision Vamp…it’s my age…don’t ya know…

Time for another pondering about teenagers. You may remember from Early to bed, Early to rise  that I am the ‘proud’ owner of precisely one teenager and that there are many things that are frankly irritating about such ownership.

Today we shall be examining one of these irritating things- self consciousness.

I have always been an embarrassing parent. Apparently. When my children were small they actually liked the fact that I was embarrassing, actually they didn’t call it embarrassing when I was dancing like a mad thing to ‘I am the music man’ at the kiddie disco on holiday. Every night. Or doing karaoke. Or enjoying the slides at an aqua park by running full pelt up the steps to get to the front of the queue dragging them behind by their hands. Or whooping the loudest at Christmas shows and summer concerts. Or enjoying scrambling over cargo nets at soft play centres or indeed in the tops of trees at high rope courses. Or screaming loud encouragement from the touchlines. Or putting love notes in their lunch boxes. They called it fun. Over the years this has gradually changed from fun to ambivalence to down right embarrassment.

So really this blog isn’t about my teenager’s self consciousness but his mum consciousness…

it is a shame really that he is hitting the peak of his social embarrassment right when I am hitting the peak of not giving a flying fuck about what people think of me. Quite literally I don’t care. At all.

Obviously I don’t want people to think I am a bad person. I am careful about things that matter. Such as manners and respect and friendship. But for the trivial stuff I just don’t care.

I don’t actually remember being embarrassed about my parents. Maybe they weren’t that embarrassing. Certainly my mother and father were not into disco dancing or shouting from the sidelines or whooping.

However I do remember being self conscious. Hiding myself under layers of clothing. Crossing the road to avoid other teenagers. Standing in the gloom at school discos. But then I was an awkward teenager. Not cool, not popular, not sporty, put firmly in the academic geek pigeon hole with the added quirkiness of double bass playing.

This is not something any of my children are. They are bright, certainly, but also popular and sporty and empathic and good friends and musical and general all round good eggs. And anyway geekiness is no longer a bad thing.

I can’t really remember when my self consciousness disapperared. I certainly had some in my twenties at university and during my career. Maybe it was around the time that I had kids. When all dignity and modesty was lost during the physical process of birth. It was maybe a realisation that if I was strong enough to build three human beings and bring them into the world it shouldn’t really matter if I have varicose veins.

And so I stopped worrying about stuff. I bought shorts for the first time in years. It was liberating and still is. I will dance first at discos. Sing first at karaokes. Join in stupid pool games. Whoop.

I have always hoped that I had instilled this ‘don’t care’ attitude in my offspring. Yet still Eldest is acutely self conscious. It is probably an age thing. I do remember and so I do feel for him I really do.

But not enough to stop dancing to Hewy Lewis and the News in the front of a four by four jeep with Paco our Spanish driver on yesterday’s safari. Whilst being filmed for the DVD. We didn’t buy the DVD by the way although lots of my fellow travellers did. Sorry guys…

Eldest actually tried to hold my arms down. I have discovered that I am much stronger than him when the Power of Love is playing.

He will have to suck it up. I am not for changing. Life is short. I want to dance. And sing. And whoop.

One day he may too.

I do hope so.


Fun Free Tuesdays…. — July 13, 2017

Fun Free Tuesdays….

Hello everyone. I am back. Did you miss me? Well of course not. Sorry I have probably lost you. Let me explain.

Yesterday was Tuesday. The first Tuesday of my children’s 8 week summer holiday. Still none the wiser? I will continue.

Now I love having my kids at home. Mostly. But there are some things about having my kids at home that I find really difficult. And one of those things is the constant battle to get them off electronic devices.

Childrens usage of electronic devices is one of those subjects which divides parents. A bit like breast v bottle and letting them cry it out or not.

I am of the camp that believes that electronic devices are inherently ‘evil’. This view is founded on no real evidence at all and is just something my gut tells me. It is probably because my childhood was in the era before computers smaller than the size of a room were invented.

I envy my mother. She had it much easier with us. The TV was our electronic device. We had one in the house. During this fortnight it was permanently tuned to the Wimbledon Championships. My mother ruled the air wave choices.

In the summer holidays once the morning television programming for children ended at around 10am there was nothing else worth watching until around 4pm. Even then the offerings in the morning weren’t great. Has anyone ever in the history of ‘Why Don’t You (switch of your television set and go and do something less boring instead)’ ever done that? I know I didn’t. Mostly because the activities they portrayed as more fun than watching them portray them were either; games involving the whole gang of circa 20 kids which me and my sole brother could not hope to replicate; or craft activities using sticky back plastic. Which wasn’t allowed in the house.

So my mother had no worries that for the vast majority of each day my brother and I would be doing wholesome activities mainly outside. Activities such as playing  under the embankment of the bypass avoiding the local flasher or running each other over on bikes. Simpler times.

Computers made an appearance in my teenage years but the time taken to load Killer Gorilla or Frogger into the computer from the tape player (don’t touch the volume at all) was so long and often unreliable that the pay off was not really great enough for me to bother.

I tired to think what I did all summer when I was Eldest’s age. My mother asserted that I still played out in the street. She reminded me of the American exchange children who came over which was probably the summer I had turned 14. She remembers me rushing outside after every meal to ‘play out’. That wasn’t really what I was up to but I didn’t want to burst her ‘wholesome activities’ bubble….

In other teenage summers I read a lot of trashy fiction. And stole my brother’s afterburner and met my mates up the woods to drink weak beer from tins.

So it is more than likely that my inherent hatred of my kids spending all day on small screens derives from my desire to see them undertaking wholesome activities such as these. Rather than watching other people open Kinder eggs or packets of Pokemon cards. It is highly likely my 13 year old has moved on from this somewhat. I don’t ask.

The upshot is that I spend a lot of time policing electronic usage and falling out with them about it. Setting time limits never really works. The time elapses and then they ‘just want to finish this video’ or ‘if they leave the game now they will be penalised and lose a legendary something or other’ or ‘oh mum everyone else plays solidly all day you know’. Etc etc. I once heard Middlest comment through his headphones that he had to leave a game and in response to his friend’s reply he said ‘I know she is sooo annoying’….

And so during my run up to this eight weeks holiday a thought had been ruminating. The thought that we should have one day a week completely free of electronic devices. Myself included. Thus cutting all time limits and arguments off at the pass.

I decided in their last week of term to float the idea. I was slightly trepidatious if I am honest.

Youngest was very much up for it. This was not really a surprise. Youngest is 9 and has just finished Year 5. As such in the Harrison household she has achieved the age of  i-pod ownership. The i-pod she possess is obviously third hand. And as such is glitchy and of limited use. Whatever. She manages to play a few games such as Word Cookies and an advanced form of that 1980s one with a ball and a wall to knock through. And she can message her friends but only at home when she is on the internet.

As such she is still the one trying to get her brothers away from You Tube for long enough to play in the garden.

Middlest went white. He asked me what on earth he was going to do. I pointed out that this time last year he did not have a phone or an X Box. That didn’t help. Apparently last summer was a desert of boredom punctuated by small oases of fun which had usually cost me over £100.

Eldest was surprisingly very much up for it too. Eldest is old enough to understand that he struggles to moderate his phone usage. And needs help to do so. Of course on a day when I do ‘help him to manage his usage’ by telling him to ‘put the damn thing away for five minutes’ he does not see it quite like that. And we usually fight.

So to him a day totally without his phone would be a day of moderate usage without the arguments. Hopefully.

And me. What about me? To be honest I wasn’t too worried. The kids had reluctantly agreed to me having my phone for calls and essential texts only. I believed I could resist face book and twitter for a day. My main concern was not being able to open the on line version of The Times newspaper Polygon puzzle, which my father had got me addicted to on our recent visit. But I consoled myself with the thought of a ‘double polygon Wednesday’.

So on Monday evening I hoovered up phones and deposited them in my bedroom along with my I pad. All completely turned off.

I came down at 8 am having overslept to find Middlest booting up the X Box. He had conveniently forgotten that ‘no electronic devices’ included his games console. We had a small contratend.

Over the day on which I had deliberately planned no activities which would have set me back £100 certain things happened.

We all overslept.

They all came to my exercise class with me and ran around the field a few times before joining in (at one point we were all doing press ups in a row much to everyone’s amusement) and declaring it ‘quite hard’.

We went to Sainsbury’s for a snack to undo all our hard work and had actual conversations.

Youngest got her adult colouring book out and did an amazing page of colouring.

Middlest survived. He helped me cook the lunch. And enjoyed chopping and peeling carrots. He read an entire book. He tried to argue that I couldn’t afford phone free Tuesday (or fun free Tuesday as he had rechristened it) as I was going to have to buy a book a week. I pointed out that we have a perfectly decent library.

He helped me cook as he was avoiding Eldest and Youngest who, to a plan of Eldest’s devising, were setting up a hot wheels car track out of his bedroom window. This involved much arguing but once they got it sorted much fun. The fun was somewhat curtailed by the window cleaner turning up.

Eldest got out his sketch pad and new ‘How to Draw’ book purchased with the book token he got for winning the Year 8 Art prize and tackled eyes and then did a decent portrait. Even if the ears are too high.

We got our haircut and they all read wholsomely in the waiting area. Youngest regaled me with animal facts from her encyclopaedia during my cut and blow dry.

They went to a friend’s house whilst hubby and I went out briefly and had fun playing nerf gun wars. Youngest and I watched an episode of the Crystal Maze circa 1990 which apparently looked ‘so old’.

They all went to bed happy,

Middlest extracted his phone from my bedroom before retiring to ensure it was charged and ready for an intense catch up as Wednesday dawned.

The others want to add another day.



Conkering Hero — October 2, 2016

Conkering Hero


Today has been one of those perfect autumn days. Sunny. Crisp. Warm. There are probably not many of these left here in good old Blighty before the damp and cold of winter sets in.

I love this time of year. The colours are fantastic. Hedgerows are full of berries. Fields have been harvested. Squirrels are busy laying away acorns and beech nuts for winter. Cobwebs shine in the early morning dew. Daddy long legs flutter at twilight. The last hopeful butterflies emerge and dance in the sunbeams. The crispness of the, increasingly later, dawn gives way to a warm sun-filled day.

We have had a lovely summer and autumn here in the South East of England. It took summer a while to get going but during our long school break the weather was generally kind. Unless we had a day planned at the lido.

September has also been generally glorious. There have been many days like today. To start with actually hot, unseasonably so, but now pleasant with the heat of the summer sun ebbing away into autumn. Even so I have line dried sheets and walked coatless much later in the year than usual. A couple of weekends ago Youngest, husband and I blackberried in glorious heat with insects still buzzing. Of course we have had rain, mainly on Saturdays to coincide with pitch side viewing, but mostly it has been set fair.

This weekend was Harvest festival. I have spent a large part of it at church celebrating the bounty this season provides. Eating too much good food. Yammering with friends. Marvelling at the low October light streaming through the stained glass dancing coloured shadows on the floor. Singing Rutter and hymns. Enjoying children serving food and singing Sambas. Including my own.

And today was also the day for our Annual Conker Extravaganza. As to my mind nothing symbolises autumn like conkers.

As a child I can still recall the excitment of finding a spiky case fallen from a horse chestnut tree. An unopened package containing one or possibly two beautiful gifts. Finding such bounty was difficult. All horse chestnut trees near my home were regularly scoured by children with sticks beating the branches to release these packages. One had to get up early and brave that crispy dawn to find them.

Last week I went on a walk to the local bottle bank and passed a beautiful old tree near to our local school. I was amazed to find literally tens of conkers and unopened cases lying underneath. I guess life is busier. Kids have other activities to soak up their time. But even so I find it sad that there are any conkers left for a woman of a certain age to collect on a random Thursday lunch time. Of course I was unable to resist hoovering them up and taking them home for my children.

But really that is not the same as doing it yourself. So today we went off to do just that at a local park. In the well trodden areas I was heartened to discover that conkers were hard to come by. People who had got up earlier than us had been bothered to collect them. So we had to resort to ‘children on shoulders’ to retrieve some directly from the branches.

But in more tucked away areas there were still hundreds to be found on the ground. The slight wind also helped as we had timed it perfectly and newly ripened fruit regularly dropped to the ground around us. It was very exciting to chase after them as they bounced along the grass. Youngest came away reluctantly from one tree pockets bulging with beauties.

Of course there is no use in just collecting conkers. One has to play the game too. Which we duly did in the back garden. Youngest remained undefeated. Middlest burnt through three, Middlest one and myself two.

I have plans for Christmas decorations for the rest of our not insubstantial haul. Maybe a wreath or tree hangers.

Horse chestnut trees are in trouble in this country due to a leaf mining insect and a fungal infection. They are dropping their leaves earlier and often look rather dry and sad by this time of the year. They still produce their wonderful fruit though. I am not sure how many more years this activity will be viable. It will be a very sad day indeed if they do die out.

For as much as we love bashing the bejeebers out of each other’s conkers the real joy is in the collecting and unwrapping of these wonderful free gifts provided by Mother Nature.



Predicting the Future — June 19, 2016

Predicting the Future


So here in the UK there is, currently, a burning European issue. It is taking over the airwaves. Dominating conversations. Turning schools and workplaces upside down. Upsetting television schedules. Dividing households.

I am, of course, talking about the Euro 2016 football championships. The irony of the running of the tournament concurrent with our other burning European issue is not lost on me.

I am not a big watcher of football. OK let me rephrase. I watch a lot of live, muddy & cold amateur soccer courtesy of my offspring. But I am not a watcher of professional soccer.

I do partake of Match of the Day. I like its format. The condensing of the whole 90 minutes plus (how England rued and then revelled in that ‘plus’ in their last two games) of matches into small bite sized parcels containing all the good bits, punctuated by healthy doses of Gary Linneker and his side kicks. And who doesn’t think he is aging spectacularly well? It is that truly awesome hair. He looks better now then in Euro 96, despite his unhealthy obsession with deep fried potato products. So, yes, I like MoTD.

But generally during major football tournaments I am not involved. I like it best when the World Cup is taking place in a timezone which means that all the matches are on television in the middle of the night.

This time however I am hooked. And here is the reason.

Youngest’s football club is running a Euro 2016 predictor competition. The coaches sent out a fiendishly complicated spreadsheet for us to complete. It consisted of predicting not only the result of each match but also the score. 5 points for a correct score, 3 points for a correct result.

I ignored that e mail for several weeks until the impassioned pleas for participation to raise valuable funds for our tour next year to Butlins, Minehead became overwhelming.  (The whole Butlins, Minehead tour thing is there in my head. In the cupboard marked ‘Things I will not think About Until They Become Unavoidable’… Watch out for the blog sometime next April…I am sure at some point in his career Vardy went on tour to Butlins, Minehead. That is why I like him so much…)

So anyway we had a go. The kids were interested for about the first five matches. Then they went on the trampoline and shouted random numbers in through the open door in response to my random shouting of team names.

Clearly as non watchers of professional football we had no idea about the relative merits of the various teams. Except that we know some of the most famous stars, but even then we aren’t always sure which of the East European sides some of them play for. It got to the point where I was plucking results out based on such maxims as ‘We haven’t had a draw for a while’ and ‘Who knew Iceland even had a football team’. Etc.

So we sent off the spreadsheet. I wasn’t hopeful. We didn’t have the hosts and possible favourites even progressing from the group stages.

We did win the Best Team Name competition though. That was Eldest. The Cheese Ball Chomping Unicorns have clearly struck a chord.

We applied a wall chart to the, well, wall. We devised a method of filling it in to show the actual scores and the outcome versus our prediction. We were set.

The competition got under way. We got the opening match right. Pure fluke. Then came the Albania v Switzerland match, again correct. I got mildly excited and came in from the garden to watch the end of Wales v Slovakia. When Wales got that second goal I got even more excited, correct again. 15 out of 15. Ok so maybe we weren’t that bad at this predictor stuff.

The kids got exasperated at me wanting Wales to win. ‘That won’t help England’ they chorused. Then I explained that if we won we would take home half the pot, around  £250, and that new CR7s or other ridiculously expensive Nike football boots might be on offer. They started shouting at the screen too.

We settled down to watch England v Russia. I was quite happy with our one nil prediction. Yes England are playing better football than in, well, forever. But England are good at disappointing. I was sat there in a state of unbelievable excitement once the England goal went in. During the four minutes of injury time I was shouting at the screen-‘Just keep it out for 4 minutes’. Twenty out of twenty beckoned.

And then England did that thing they do so well. Snatched defeat from the jaws of victory. Well a draw but it may as well have been defeat, predictor wise. And no, Ian Wright, I don’t take comfort from the good football they demonstrated. Five points thrown away in the 92nd minute. And worse a lot of my fellow predictor players were even more pessimistic than me England wise and had correctly predicted the draw. How grossly unpatriotic.

Since then things have gone a little down hill. From top of the leader board to seventh at the last reckoning. Let’s face it Hungary v Austria? -no idea. And who knew about Iceland? I am not sure they knew themselves.

Still it was good whilst it lasted. And our early promise has probably improved my side line credibility, amateur football watching wise. That is if anyone has worked out who The Cheese Ball Chomping Unicorns are….

Your Starter for Ten… — September 22, 2015

Your Starter for Ten…

  quiz shows

Here is a little secret. I like watching TV quiz shows.

My current favourites are Pointless and Only Connect. But quite honestly I will watch almost any quiz show. Except celebrity Family Fortunes. Even the comedy ‘Uh-ah’ klaxon cannot make up for the cringey host (whose name I forget) and the awful relatives of those who are vaguely famous.

In my view there are several ingredients for a successful quiz show. Firstly a great host or hosts. Here is where Pointless has it for me. The combo of Alexander and Richard, the comedian and the nerd made famous, is killer.

But I also like stern hosts, like Jesser Paxman, avuncular hosts, such as him off Countdown and t’other one from Mastermind, funny hosts (see Pointless above), genial hosts, good old Dale, he of the orange fake tan (I know he is a plastic surgery car crash but I have fond student memories of watching Supermarket Sweep) and finally hosts who are easy on the eye.

Mmmmm, Nick Knowles, my secret, slightly worrying crush. I like to see him turned out in a suit on that Lottery list show (lists are soooo yummy). It makes a refreshing and slightly erotic change from his builder gear in DIY SOS. I often think Sky should have a ‘personality record’ function to run alongside its series record function. Then I would never miss anything with Nick Knowles in….Lists and Nick Knowles….life doesn’t really get much better.

Sorry I slipped off into a bit of a reverie there. Back on track now.

Back to quizzes (slightly reluctantly). There needs to be a good format. Recently there seems to have been a proliferation of really quite clever games shows. Back to Pointless again. To my mind the idea is simply, well simple, but ingenious.

In case you are one of a very few people left in the Western World who is not familiar with my favourite game show the general idea is to think of correct yet obscure answers to a wide range of different questions. Beforehand the show has asked 100 members of the public to answer the same questions. The idea is to try to get a pointless answer. That is a correct answer that none of those 100 people responded with.

So for instance imagine a question such as ‘Provide the name of any Muppet’. Kermit would be right but score highly. Swedish Chef less so. Etc. I would urge you to watch the show if you are still unsure. Or maybe you like being in a very small club…

Anything that involves asking members of the public anything is always a winner. It never ceases to amaze me that if you ask 100 members of the great British public a question such as ‘Name a famous French landmark’ the answer Eiffel Tower will not glean a score of 100. It would probably get 89. I always wonder what those 11 other people were thinking. Or if they were thinking at all. Scary.

There are other clever quiz shows out there. I like Tipping Point and Only Connect. Both new (well to me) and quite interesting.

One involves a giant shove tuppenny amusement arcade machine. With ridiculously easy and almost incidental questions. The fun is in whether the tokens will ‘ride’ and how many will fall off the edge. Many more than in all the seaside arcades I have ever been in.

The other is quite high brow with teams of physics graduates finding obscure connections whilst looking like they have strayed from the set of The IT Crowd. The hostess is buxom which probably appeals to those perpetual student types. Tonight I did appallingly on ‘Novels by Thomas Pynchon’ but much better on ‘BBC shows that have run for more than 25 years’. Probably signifying my level, intelligence wise, but also demonstrating the show’s wide appeal.

And so it helps a programme’s appeal if the questions are do-able, at least in part, at home. So really I shouldn’t like University Challenge (personal record 7 right answers in an episode….yep an episode) but I do in a kind of jaw dropping, awe inspired way. And anyway I love the scorn of Paxman. And get my fix of it there without having to sit through Question Time.

Similarly the first half of Mastermind is a dull view unless one of the contestants’ specialist subjects is something one knows anything about. The general knowledge round however sparks my interest (personal best 10 per round….per round). And a certain amount of competition between husband and I. I just cough loudly if any chemistry questions come up. My degree in the subject was a very, very long time ago.

And that brings me to celebrity versions of such shows. Well it doesn’t bring me to there really but hey I want to talk about them.

The producers would deny it but I am sure they dumb down the questions for those who are famous.  Certainly I get more questions right on such shows. I do have trouble recognising most of the ‘celebrities’ though. Not always however. Geoffrey from Rainbow was on the other night. He was instantly recognisable even without Zippy and George. He had to sit down between rounds. Bless. Proper kids’ TV royalty though.

My favourite ever celebrity version of a show was one where Keith Harris and Orville formed a team on Pointless. The kids could not understand why they were at a massive disadvantage to the other couples taking part. They thought I was being ‘duckist’. I think as a team they got as far as the Head to Head round. Again incredibly funny.

So there you have it. I like quiz shows. What a lot of nonsense.

NK3 nickknowles-2 nickknowles suit

Sorry felt I had to put in some photos….

Balls…. — September 3, 2015


20150902_114647 image20150902_111927

I am writing this whilst Middlest and Youngest run amok in our local soft play centre. Of all the wondrous and exciting things I offered to take them to today whilst Eldest is at school and a friend’s house this is what they wanted to do.

In the foyer there is a hippo bearing the slogan ‘You must be smaller than me to play in here’.

It is not an actual hippo, you understand, but a wooden effigy of a hippo. It is obviously not real as it stands on its back legs about five foot high. Which I guess is the point. Damn it why didn’t I take a picture? Anyway. I digress. Again.

During my many, many trips here over the duration of my parenthood I have paid that hippo scant regard. Eldest has naturally outgrown the soft play experience. But today Middlest just scraped in. Luckily he already had his shoes off. Within minutes they had returned to our encampment in the café to let me know that the place is apparently ‘smaller’ than they remembered.

And so our time as a family in such places is coming to a close. There are more ‘grown up’ versions of soft play. High rope courses, trampoline centres, indoor surfing, climbing walls, death slides. But, still, I have an affection for this shed full of ball pits and slides and cargo nets.

My first experience was when my NCT antenatal group celebrated our eldest children’s first birthday here. There were no other kids in our lives. We spent the afternoon helping our crawling first borns climb up small sets of padded steps and slide safely down, well, small slides. We hovered and protected them from the ‘big’ kids, who had reached walking stage and were perhaps 3. The dads came too. It was a milestone moment. It celebrated not only their birthdays but also all of us surviving a whole year in the new uncharted territory of parenthood. And all against the backdrop of that hippo.

When my eldest two were little we came here a fair bit in school term time for the morning on wet days before rushing home for the afternoon nap. It was cheap and convenient and always quiet.  Because it was so quiet I used to take my, by then, toddling boys on the ‘main frame’, venturing out from the safe harbour of the Under 4’s area. Onto the large slides and big gym balls.

Of course this neccesitated me going on too. To push them by their nappied bottoms up the more difficult inclines. And to be honest I quite enjoyed it. Except once when I was heavily pregnant with Youngest and I got wedged in a pair of rollers. A mass of two year olds prevented an exit in reverse and anyway my two precious charges had forged on ahead into the gloom of the ‘dark pyramid’ area where large and steep unmarked tube slides awaited. I had to squeeze. And hope. She was born a few weeks later apparently unharmed.

My first ever foray into organising birthday parties for friends took place here. Eldest’s fourth. With his pre school buddies. I was over anxious and over thought everything as usual. The party was a great success and it was then I realised that hosting parties at a venue used to dealing with such events was ‘the way forward’. I believe all my children have had at least one of their parties here since.

I have had long conversations with friends in the cafe whilst periodically forcing squash into sweaty off spring and purchasing chips.

I have sat on my own reading with a cuppa grabbing a bit of ‘quiet’ and me time.

And today I am writing this. After I discovered that there has been the surprise addition of free Wifi since I last visited.

I am going now to partake before it gets too busy and parents are banned, excepting those rescuing ‘stuck’ children. It may be the last time I can. The lure of one last go in the ball pit is strong. As long as one doesn’t  think too hard about the possibility of unsavoury contents I find it quite liberating.

So, so long soft play centre. I might have the occasional pang. Onwards and upwards. Probably in harnesses.

Footnote I am not sure how Youngest managed to dress herself to provide exact camouflage in the giant gym ball area…but it was a tad un-nerving.

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