A weekly podcast from the creators of the highly opinionated Now Look Here! blog. Allen and Cathrine are rapidly approaching middle-age, have loads of kids, and no more time to waste on nonsense. They discuss their favourite movies and TV shows, music, current affairs, social issues, and pretty much anything else that grabs their attention. They strongly suspect that nobody else Gets It, and feel that the world would be a better place if only our elected leaders would ask their advice first before making major policy decisions. But they're far too interesting to take any of this stuff too seriously.
The Now Look Here! podcast is recorded weekly, as our schedule of work and kids permits!
Who watches the kids?
We’re back! After more than two months silence, we dragged out the microphones and recorded an episode, picking up exactly from where we left off. Today’s topic of discussion: Who watches the kids when Mom and Dad have to selfishly turn away for a moment to answer a phone, or go to work, or visit a sick relative in hospital? Also, absolutely no mention of why we’ve been quiet for so long. Not even an apology!
(Okay so here it is: it’s all work’s fault. Allen has been finishing a major project which had him working six to seven days a week for over two months, and Cathrine has been watching five kids all by herself, and juggling deadlines with her editors while Allen was away. We wanted to record more episodes for you, dear reader, we really did, but every time we set up the recording gear, one of us would pass out before we could begin. We’re very sorry about that.)
So who watches the kids?
So what do you do? Hire a sitter? Ask a neighbour to just keep an eye out for a few hours? These days we’re all so much more aware of risks and dangers that we sometimes shy away from these options. And in our modern world, we don’t live as close to our extended families as we once did, and it’s becoming more usual for all adults in a household to have to work a full time job if the bills are going to be paid. Our own arrangement means that at least one parent is at home more often than not, but our distance from the city means that even a simple shopping run to get bread and milk would leave the kids unsupervised for up to an hour.
So if you use the player below, or if you’ve subscribed to us through your favourite podcatcher, you’ll hear us grapple with this problem. We discuss what we’ve tried over the years, what’s gone wrong and what’s worked. We don’t promise answers that will fit your life, because there is no such thing as a universal solution for everybody’s unique circumstances, but maybe you’ll get some ideas from a couple of old pro’s!
And as always, if you like the show, please tell a friend, share the episode on your favourite social media, click the likes, hearts and stars, and maybe even consider leaving us a review on iTunes. We’d really appreciate it! And if you have your own thoughts on the topic, or would like to tell us who watches the kids in your own home, leave a comment below!
Better late than never, here is the eleventh episode of the Now Look Here! parenting podcast. After a long, sticky, but all round peaceful Easter weekend, we return to discuss the never ending struggle to find some alone time for yourself. Specifically, we talk about how we manage it, how other parents seem to do it, and why it’s so important (spoiler: If you don’t find a little time away from your responsibilities as a parent, you might very well lose your mind.)
Whether it’s swapping duties with your partner, roping in a babysitter or taking time in increments, we try and wrap our heads around ways to take small breaks (and essentially stay sane).
You may have noticed…
We did not review any television or movies this week. Sorry about that but we simply haven’t managed to find any alone time to watch anything this week, which is one reason why we chose this week’s topic! However, we recently got our hands on Elementary, a modern take on Sherlock Holmes from a few years back. We’re slowly working our way through season one, and will be returning to our usual format next episode to let you know what we think!
We’v been playing around with our recording equipment, trying out a few knobs we hadn’t pressed before, and we think we’ve managed to improve our audio quality somewhat. Let us know in the comments if we’re easier to hear!
How to Transport a Family
We’re back! Things have been so unsettled that we had to record this episode (How to Transport a Family) in two separate sessions, and then still took extra days to edit it and produce the recording you’re about to listen to. But we made an extra effort to be a little more interesting than usual, as our way of making it up to you for keeping you waiting.
In this episode we talk about transport, and the unique problems of moving a large family around when your school, place of work, and home, are all far apart. Big cars are the obvious answer, but there are many reasons why you might not want to go that route – they’re expensive to buy, expensive to fuel, and are hard on the environment. We found another solution which, while not as luxurious or even comfortable as we might have liked, has turned out to be unexpectedly practical – it’s a good compromise between the transport needs of a family of seven, and those of the individual adults going to work. Listen to the podcast to find out what it is!
And on a different note
We’ve also recently worked our way through a brand new science fiction TV series called The Expanse. It’s not just good, it’s amazingly good, and we are more excited about the still-to-be-filmed 2nd season than we’ve been about any media in a very long time. We give our best effort at a pretty decent review, without any spoilers – let us know if we got it right in the comments! Or you know, whether you agree with us or not, if you have anything to add, or whatever. Comment!
Boundaries and Priorities
This week we take on the thorny problem of the boundaries that we need to build to protect our family lives. Getting the other adults in your life to take your kids seriously can be hard. Not the children themselves, as individual human beings, but their needs and the responsibilities they give you as parents. Popular film and TV like to perpetuate the idea that when a friend gets married, you’ve lost that friend forever. But substitute “Having kids” for “Getting married”, and it actually becomes kinda true. We change when we become parents, and it affects our relationships and our priorities. The people we leave behind don’t always understand what’s changed, and expect you to continue giving them the same amount of time and affection as before.
In this episode, Allen and Cathrine talk about some of the problems this causes, both socially and professionally. We don’t have a lot to offer by way of solutions, but since you’ve probably been made to feel like a bad friend, or been told to be more of a “team player” by your boss, perhaps it will help to learn that you’re not alone!
Every now and then you’ll hear a baby grumbling in the background. We apologise for this because we know how distracting background noises can be in an audio recording, but since we’ve just been talking about how our kids are top priority, we thought you’d understand if we kept the baby near by while we recorded!
Cathrine mentions Meatball Night. She’s referring to the modern tradition of Friday Night Meatballs, and one day when we move back to civilization, we are definitely and absolutely going to make it our own. Good food, socialising with adults, meeting new people AND not needing babysitters. I can’t imagine anything better!
Infested: Dealing with head lice
Head lice. Yuck, right? But there are a few things we want you to know about these little parasites: They’re far more common than you think, you could be infested without realising it and they present absolutely no health risk at all. But, they’re undeniably gross. So what do you do when your kids come home with lice in their hair? What do you say when the school calls to say that they’ve found nits, or lice eggs, in your kid’s hair and you must fetch them immediately, to avoid infecting other children?
The fact is, they’re difficult to remove successfully. You need your child to sit still while the fine-toothed comb tugs at their hair for up to an hour, and then you need to repeat this process every few days for as long as it takes to catch all of the newly hatched louse nymphs, and it only takes one louse from another child’s head to re-infect the head you’ve worked so hard to clear. In the podcast we discuss how infection happens, what the medical risk is, and the immense frustration of watching your freshly cleared children get re-infected minutes later when they play with a friend!
Corrections: Stuff we got wrong about lice
To answer some questions we asked ourselves while recording: Yes, lice are insects, and no they are not hermaphrodites – you get male and female lice. I also stated that live eggs are flat against the scalp, but this is only half-true. They are laid and attached to a single hair, flush with the scalp, but as the hair grows, the egg moves up with it. Since eggs take up to nine days to hatch, they could be as far as 6mm from the scalp and still not have hatched yet. The newly hatched louse is about the size of a pinhead and quite hard to see. They molt a few times, before reaching adult size (a little bigger than a sesame seed) after seven days. They live another 30 days before dying of old age, but can lay up to eight eggs per day. Incidentally, they cannot live off of your head: they need your body heat and your blood – a louse left on a pillow or in clothing will die of starvation within a day or two, and probably be pretty torpid for most of that time.
The Terrible Two’s
In which we discuss The Terrible Two’s
Our first full episode of the new year! We’re trying out something new with formatting, so please leave a comment and tell us what you think? We’ve decided to narrow our focus on parenting and what better place to start than the hugely frustrating Terrible Two’s – that stage of a child’s life which begins sometime near their second birthday and ends when they get their driver’s license. We look at what’s going on in your screaming little angel’s mind that makes them act like this, and how adjusting your own attitude can make things easier for everybody.
You’ll notice that this is one of our shortest recordings, and this is a deliberate decision. Hour-long podcasts seem to be the standard, but who has the time or attention-span to listen to such long recordings in a single session? A shorter recording is easier to listen to and forces us to work harder at cutting the chaff and staying on topic. We’re pretty happy with the results, and hope that you like it too!
So you’ve listened to the whole thing and are pulling your hair out in frustration at our struggle to name the actor whom we mentioned at one point. The one who did NOT voice Simba in The Lion King 2. He starred in Ferris Buehler’s Day Off, and played Mouse in Willow.
Well you can relax: It came to us about five minutes after we turned off the recorder: Matthew Broderick!