These lovely warm days are a bit of a double edged sword. On one hand it's so brilliant being able to sit outside with Nancy, go for walks without taking a coat, and hang the washing out outside (oh my God, I'm totally turning into my own mum.)
The flip side is getting out your white, mottled, flabby skin that hasn't seen the light of day since this time last year. I'd just announced I was pregnant last March, so, let's be honest, no one was going to notice all the lumps and bumps then, as its difficult to tell where the fat stops and the baby starts.
It was bad enough that I got a fringe cut too soon after having Nancy without shifting enough of the baby weight , looking more Dawn French than Jessie J. But a photograph of me on the beach taken recently made me realise that I can't use Nancy as an excuse anymore.
She's 6 months old now. That's 6 months of 4 rounds of toast with nutella. Of getting the bus to the stop I can see from my house. That's 3 rubbish runs in 6 months, and 11 goes on the Slendertone before convincing myself I didn't have the time, even though all you need to do is strap it to yourself and press the on button.
So I'm taking the power back. I'm going to fess up to online weight watchers about my true weight, and cut back on the peanut trackers, because even if my dad used to eat them to be healthy, he was about to walk up Snowdon, not settle down to Murder on The Nile.
And Nancy and I are taking up swimming.
I also think she could probably do with a bit more stimulation. Watching Sherlock Holmes 2 at the pictures is definitely more for me than her. She doesn't care how hot Robert Downy Jnr is. And being jiggled up and down for two hours in semi darkness is probably not that much of a laugh for her anymore. Or ever if I'm totally honest with myself.
Our first attempt at swimming was less than successful. Well it went OK in so far as Nancy didn't freak out when submerged in the water. But Ben and I were so anxious by the time we got to the baby pool that it was all we could do to dunk her in and get out again.
The woman on the desk as we came in told us the little pool would shut in 20 minutes, so it was up to us if we wanted to go in. Which we did as we'd been building up to it all day.
So we lurked around in the changing room noisily complaining about people without babies hogging the family changing facilities. One eventually became free, a family of five- two parents, two toddlers and a baby, emerged.
We squeezed Nancy into the tiniest pair of waterproof pants, and me into the tiny Asda swimsuit, only to be stopped on our way in by a member of staff telling us that the pool was just about to shut for swimming lessons, even though there was still 5 minutes before the 20 minute curfew. So Ben distracted her, pointing this out at great length, whilst Nancy and I darted into the water.
If it was a film, this would have been the slow motion crescendo with a 'Chariots of Fire' soundtrack, as we entered the baby pool, step by step, for the first time, followed closely by Ben, who'd shaken off the woman.
But once there, we had about 5 seconds of splashing around before the lifeguard blew his whistle. In the film version of this, his voice would be totally slowed down, distorted, and full of panic...'everyooooooone ooooooout the pooooool,' (we were the only people in there) 'eeeeempty the pooooool, it's swiiiiiiming lessons nooooooooow. Geeeet oooooooout.'
I think the whistle was a bit over the top to be honest, seeing as he could just have squatted down and asked us.
And then it was the whole thing in reverse. Moaning about the family changing facilities. Getting out of tiny costumes/ pants. (Turns out you just rip off the waterproof nappies, not carefully pull them down and save them, even if they're full of wee, for the next time.)
I'm not convinced this is going to make me into the next Duncan Goodhew, but at least it saves Nancy from watching Final Destination 8.