We forgo a bath on Saturday and do a major dip and scrub on a Sunday in preparation for the school week ahead. Our weekends are less structured than school nights so we want the week to start well with the fresh smell of ‘Johnson and Johnsons’ (a family company) lol… and nicely pressed school uniforms for T and A.
Yes our first born of our older set of twins is actually Amritsar. But we like to use Tara’s name first as much as Amritsar’s. Politics and diplomacy start young nowadays – we’re hoping to avoid any resentment on whos name comes first later on – they are both as equally talented and both as strong willed, although they excel in different areas.
We didn’t realise when the names were considered that they would add up to the word ATTAC (Amritsar, Tara, Thor, Aaliyah and Caleb) with the timeline of the births. And no – that’s enough – there will be no sixth child with a name starting with the letter K (ATTACK) lol.
All of our children were born via a c’section. So in the case of twins and we have two sets, the weight of the babies at birth determines who is the first born. For us the c’section was an important factor for our surrogacies. Our egg donors and surrogates helped us assisting in very different ways. I definitely feel that to go through the process of a natural birth for the surrogate for a child who was not biologically theirs’ would just be so conflicting and thankfully the IVF clinics we had used in the past subscribed to the same ethics!
One also has to consider – we chose surrogacy and more so compensated surrogacy (not legal in the U.K.) as the way to plan our family as altruistic surrogacy (where no payment is made, just expenses), quite legal here in the U.K. had its potential problems! John and I planned this family – we are our children’s true and only parents. I don’t feel that a moral or ethical argument exists here. We just chose not to be dependent on an unknown person to assist as the progenitor in our pregnancies. The thought of a third party (mummy) in the background looking in every now and then to ‘check up’ on us as parents was just completely unacceptable. We both chose to be parents, John and I, not the egg donor or the surrogate.
Anyhow ATTAC. We had to smile when we realised that…
Our Sunday has flown by. Another birthday party this morning at 11am. Our three youngest were also invited so it meant that we could all seven go as a family. The birthday was another set of twins from the girls school. Our girls and they are best of friends. I guess with them all being twins – birds of a feather! The party was great – though I am not the biggest fan of entertainers who call themselves clowns (too many nightmares as a child). However he did well and freed up the time for all the invited parents to chat and network – as they do. One boy had an aversion to clowns and hid behind the veranda for the first thirty minutes, but the clown did well and won over the boys confidence eventually.
We all had a good day – so I’m gonna sign off now and relax a bit before bedtime.
Another week awaits.
Well, why have I decided to do this and what do I want from it? Who are we and just what could I blog about! Good questions to embrace at this early point…
Throughout the baby years, as many of you will remember – I just didn’t have the time in the day. Just the sheer exhaustion of it all and that is with John and the nannies committed help and support. The feeds, the nappies, the crying, the sleepless nights. Not to mention the giggles, the aaah oooh’s, the steps and the running up the stairs with whom ever sat on my shoulders, tiny hands grasping at my face, hanging on for dear life and screaming loud with the excitement of the moment! There really wasn’t the inspiration to share what seemed a very precious time. But babies grow steadily, yes all five of them. Now very much little people. It seems that we all have so much more to say as we’re all participating in our BIG family life.
I do want a record of these times and an online diary might just work. It’s the little things isn’t it? All families must smile about or cry, maybe laugh or avoid – those little things… and I want to share some of those moments with you. Our children’s personalities are tangible now and I want to show you how we cope with the little things and how we deal with one and other.
I have so far mentioned Aaliyah and Thor, so I will now introduce you to the others. Our first born was our 10 year old Dalmatian ‘Remus’, then three years down the line was his daughter ‘Gracie’, both completely bonkers and very needy. Our twin girls were born in the spring of 2013 via surrogacy. Their names are Amritsar and Tara. Then in late 2014 baby Thor was born and six months later his biological brother and sister joined us. Their names are Aaliyah and Caleb. Yes in normal circumstances an impossibility, but as you may be thinking, surrogacy again had its role to play.
I’m thinking of writing a daily summary or story with perhaps an extra update at the weekend! Does that sound about right for a blog? I’ve got a few ‘saved stories’ up my sleeve, so perhaps on a low news day we could take a trip down memory lane.
There – I’ve set out my intentions, let’s see where that leads…
Dusk has just shrouded us and John has just lead the not so famous five up to bed. It feels very utumnal now – dark outside, well before 7pm and the children’s bedtime.
It’s been a long day. Our agenda started at the Natural History Museum in London and ended at a crazy trampolining center in Ealing in West London for a friends childs sixth birthday. Plus a lunch of pizza and ice cream in the middle.
Have you ever tried to keep an eye of five little ones – all dashing in various directions in trampoline heaven! And guess what the birthday menu was? Yes a second helping of pizza and ice cream …
Back home now, the children in bed. Thor has just been yelling from the second level of stairs ‘Kiss and Hug Dadda, Kiss and Hug’. So, a Kiss and Hug later and John and I are now settled in the living room with out feet up. All is quiet upstairs and a well deserved glass of wine is being poured.
The rapscallion hounds are nudging for space on the sofa – the end of another day. And we didn’t even get to see Andy from Cbeebies and his time travelling clock at the museum. Meaning we will have to make another trip at some point or other.
What lies in store for tomorrow?
So many stories have already passed me by where my family are concerned. There will be time for reminiscing about them later on I guess. Let’s start off with the NOW shall we?
Just whilst sitting at my desktop for a little over an hour this early afternoon, the little ones on the top floor, rather than have their sleep decided to off their soiled nappies and smear them over the tiles in the bathroom and all over Aaliyah’s bed linen. Now we’re not posh, but do afford nanny help. I luckily went up to tell them to settle down after Sindy our nanny went off for her midday break. It wasn’t until later, just before she returned that the poo incident took place… poor Sindy, she wasn’t at all happy. Teaching children the difference between right and wrong sometimes seems like it’s going nowhere. But it will stick eventually. I know this because our two older twin girls are the best behaved children ever – of all time EVER! Well most of the time I guess…
A life less ordinary but being well lived, yet blighted by the more than ordinary and downright bizarre. Me and my family are living through the delightful discovery of it all!
welcome to my family. I am Andi and I have been a gay stay at home dad for over five years now. I live with a long term partner John, two crazy Dalmatians and five children all under the age of six years old.