A while ago I read an article in the Times about how to raise happy children. One of the suggestions was to be community minded, as helping others can make us happy. Well my two boys have been dragged to many a local charity fundraiser and sponsored walk since being knee high to a grasshopper.
But nowhere did the article talk about the collateral damage of said community events; here is a list of mine:
1. I have developed a tombola addiction, even when the prizes look like the ones recycled from events of years gone by. I can feel my heart race and check with anticipation for the numbers 0 or 5. As do my lovely boys who I am sure it comes with no coincidence recognised those two numbers earlier than the rest they learnt!
2. My last cake stall purchase looked absolutely delicious, one bite and the soft sponge crunched between my teeth. Further investigation revealed lots of eggshells. Am hoping this experience does not extinguish my love of cake. Scrap that I had cake for my play date pudding yesterday – phew! I do however think I will approach random cake stalls in future with a degree of hesitation though, scared of my memory of the crunchy cake.
3. The need to take out a second mortgage to cover all the mandatory purchases from the entrance fee, tombola, cake stall, raffle, lucky dip, guess the name of the teddy bear etc…
4. Being roped into interesting fancy dress ideas by other mummy friends. I looked particularly ridiculous as one of the seven dwarfs complete with ill-fitting top and cushion stuffed in!
Despite all of this I would not change a thing, after all my boys happiness depends upon it!!!
More recently I have hosted a few kids bingo events, using my lovely PR contacts to supply wonderful prizes that people will actually want to win (not the type of prizes that keep being passed from fundraiser to fundraiser!), but what I have realised is that you can’t please everyone, even when you give up your time to help the community it can backfire as people get grumpy if they don’t win what they want! So being community minded isn’t always making me happy… bah bumbug indeed.