It’s a new era of being pleasant in my world

Trying less sarcasm and a bit more shhh isn't straightforward. Picture: Thinkstock

Trying less sarcasm and a bit more shhh isn't straightforward. Picture: Thinkstock - Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

Eye rolling, smarty pants replies and general smugness are on the way out. Jo Malone is supposed to be giving up sarcasm for Lent.

It's the latest idea from the queen of eye rolling, number one daughter Sunny.

While she's embracing student life at uni, I'm trying to pay some favours forward as I'm always the one on the receiving end.

She suggested I tried being nice.

'Stop being so rude,' was actually her way of putting it. It followed an afternoon of me apparently being awful.


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We'd been into the jeans shop, as I wanted another pair of the ones I was wearing.

'Are they from here?' asked the helpful shop assistant.

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'No, they're from somewhere completely different, that's why I've come here for the exact same ones,' I said, adding a 'doh' which may or may not have been under my breath.

And later we're waiting at park and ride for the bus and a friend of her's, who I haven't met before, sees Sunny and comes to say hi.

'Still waiting?' he says.

'No, one came and we just carried on standing here in the cold,' I say.

'I told you about her,' says Sunny.

So her great plan is that my being more pleasant and less sarcastic would be a helpful way of passing on good deeds.

Rather than waiting for Lent I had a practice day.

I tried to swallow the 'in your own time' and 'it's okay, I've got all day' and the 'don't worry, you just sit there relaxing, it's fine, I'll do it, again,' lines which I scatter to pretty much everyone.

But it's really difficult. I'm struggling to lock the door and carry a barefoot Thalia out of the door with a collection of shoes and boots. We simply have to leave and being six means she can't decide whether it's a pink boots moment or a trainers moment and if it's trainers should it be school trainers or sister Keola's old trainers.

'Your helpfulness and sense of urgency is absolutely fantastic,' I tell Thalia, trying to step over a puddle and open the car door, setting off the car alarm, without dropping her or boots and shoes.

She just looks at me.

I bundle her into the car, hoping she'll choose her boots or shoes on the way as I drive and we might just about pick Keola up on time.

'I haven't got any socks,' she announces. Back indoors I go, finally we're ready and I'm reversing out of the drive.

'You said I could bring Let It Go,' she announces, the name that's stuck for her Frozen character doll.

'Why are you doing that Mummy?' she adds, as I bang my head on the steering wheel.

'Because it feels good,' I say.

I don't think I'm cut out for being nice, or stopping sarcasm, or proper parenting.

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