Sweet Sixteen (Part One)

The old believe everything; the middle-aged suspect everything; the young know everything.” Oscar Wilde

Friday night saw 30+ teenagers congregate in our apartment for an early Sweet Sixteen party for the teenager ahead of her birthday in early July which falls in the school holidays. Why did I agree to this madness? Because I’ve gone soft! It’s official, I’ve lost the plot, it might be too much sun, my age or I’m losing my marbles or probably a combination of all three, but a couple of my decisions of late have been questionable and against everything I’ve said for years, no house parties (obviously they had lots parties at home when they were younger, I’m not that harsh) and definitely no animals!

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So what’s the reason for the flagrant lapse my own rules, there’s a common denominator THE TEENAGER! I have been adamant about no house parties (that I was aware of or gave permission for, ring any bells second son!!) for the past couple of years but she gradually wore me down and the deciding factor, which tipped the balance in her favour, was the presence of the eldest son who was on duty to act in loco parentis and as bouncer to flex his muscles, if so required (we were literally shoved out the door as we are soooooooo embarrassing, rude much ?!?). So the apartment survived apart from copious amounts of debris, very sticky floors in the party zone and a vomit covered bathroom (everywhere but in the toilet)!!! It could have been worse!!

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Pre-party was a challenging (aka stressful) affair which highlights the complexity of a hormonal peer-pressured teenager girls existence. At the party shop where we were buying a table cloth and accessories, she didn’t want a ’16’ balloon and cups as she’s not a child but wanted a plastic silver/fluffy crown and light-up ’16’ badge (insert confused mother face), at the pizza restaurant when ordering take-out “You are ordering far too many pizzas” (all got eaten, just saying) and at the cake shop “I don’t want a cake because people will sing and no one eats cake” (hello?!? it’s a birthday party and the cake got eaten, again just saying) and when moving all the furniture to the sides of the room “No one will sit down” and you guessed it, they did! My favourite thing which was quite amusing was the removal of all family photos so they couldn’t be photographed and circulated on social media!

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So yesterday while the menfolk sunned themselves on the boat and the teenager relaxed on her bed immersed in social media and reality TV, I spent quite a few hours in the company of Mr Bleach and Mrs Mop as I hoovered, moped, hoovered, moped on repeat, sterilised the aforementioned bathroom and shifted furniture back into position! See I really am not myself! Not sure it was a ‘Sweet’ Sixteen more like Stressy (teenager pre-party), Stroppy (teenager post-party), Sticky (floors), Sweaty (guests) and Sicky (bathroom). At least it was over in a couple of hours and I hope Sweet Sixteen (Part Two) on her actual birthday is less eventful.

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The impact of the animal decision is much greater. How can a little ball of fluff takeover the house? This kitten rules the roost as she chomps her way through i-phone/i-pad cables (8 to date), a MacBook wire, a Wii wire, two pairs of my shoes, table mats, bikinis, underwear and anything that moves even slightly in the breeze of the constant air conditioning. Plants have been moved, doors are permanently closed, precious things hidden away and any discipline dished out is blatantly ignored. The teenager excelled herself with the cajoling, pleading and photos of the rescued kitten that needed a home. Yes, there’s no doubt she’s cute and the teenager loves her to bits but the biting, fur shredding, naughty little fur ball is incredibly annoying and expensive too! So I am now on high alert so that I am not manipulated in the future, there will be no more house parties and abso-bloody-lutely no more animals, watch out teenager I am watching you!

ImageSleeping ball of cuteness for a moment or two before it’s time for even more mischief. If you like kittens read more about her arrival in the family here.

Unless otherwise stated, all photos on this page © Jo Brett 2014. All rights reserved.