Whats the worst Christmas present you've ever received?

There is nothing worse that giving or getting a crappy Christmas present is there? Whether you've forgotten someone and had to do some last minute gift purchase in a poorly stocked chemist (or worse still a 24 hour garage on Christmas day!!) or you've bought that 'perfect gift' and as the big 'exchange moment' draws ever closer you realise this isn't going to go down well. So it begs the question.....

Whats the worst Christmas present you've ever received? 

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What parents really want (and don't want) for Christmas

What parents want

A 'real' gift guide:

  • Sleep (Imagine if I had an affiliate link for this!!).
never sleep.jpg


  • A child free hangover (Actually, no hangover at all, just the night out without the feeling of dehydrated death that follows).
try adding kids to the mix Mr Polar Bear.

try adding kids to the mix Mr Polar Bear.


  • To feel like an 'actual human', rather than a servant to a band of hungry bipolar menopausal dwarves.
  • To finish a meal/drink without anyone taking some or it going cold.  #bliss
  • To poo in peace.
poo in peace.jpg

What they don't want

  • Your unsolicited parenting 'advice'.
  • The dreaded 'danger nap'. (You know the one, when you child decides to 'rest their eyes' at 6pm and you know you'll pay for it later).
  • Kids filled with sugar (I'm looking at you grandparents, it's not funny)
  • To hear the words, 'I don't feel too good' (especially if someone has mentioned the phrase 'vomiting bug' in your presence recently)


  • Noisy toys; drums, whistles, xylophones, battery operated toys, bears that repeat the same thing over and over and over and over (till you wish for the end)
noisy toys.jpg


So, what do you really want for Christmas? (Yes, I did mention the C word, in November)

Whats the worst present you've ever recieved?

Let me know in the comments

OPHELIA - You're breaking my heart

So the Bear had gone to her mothers with the kids for the day and Daddy P was settling into a nice little FIFA session. No kids. No list. Nothing. Just him. Alone. AHHHHH!!!



The Bear: "There's a big storm coming!! Actually, it's a hurricane"

Daddy Poppins: "Yeah 😒"

The Bear: "Don't be so dismissive"

Daddy Poppins: "We live in Ireland, not Florida"

The Bear: "We need supplies; candles, torches, food, milk, water"

Daddy Poppins: "Grand Whatever, I'm trying to play the PlayStation here"

The Bear: "They're saying it'll be huge on the news"

Daddy Poppins: "They say lots of things on the news"

The Bear: "You need to take this seriously"

Daddy Poppins: "I can't pause this its an online game, See ya later"

So being a [good husband/under the thumb] (delete where applicable) Daddy Poppins heads off into town to get the required supplies (plus Wine and chocolate 😜).

He would like to point out that this definitely wasn't just an excuse to go get a burrito, telling the world it could be his 'last ever meal' and generally laughing at the Bear on instastories.

So he gets the supplies, (eats a magnificent burrito) and heads home. Job done👍. On goes the PlayStation and he's back in his 'happy place'.


The Bear: "Have you seen the news?"

Daddy Poppins: "I'm trying to play the PlayStation, I've no time for 'news', fear mongering, that's all it is"

The Bear: "You need to go out to the garden and take in everything; chairs, benches, plant pots, bins, blah, blah, blah, blah..... sand pit"

*at this point Daddy Poppins had stopped listening (the lady's favourite films are disaster movies after all)

Daddy Poppins: "Wait a second! The sand pit? It's been uncovered for days in the rain. It'd take 3 people to move it"

The Bear: "Did you hear everything I said?"

Daddy Poppins: "Whatever! It's a bit of wind"

The Bear: "No, seriously!! Whatever you do don't forget to take down the trampoline"

*Daddy Poppins looks out at the bloody huge trampoline

Daddy Poppins: "FUCK off if you think I'm dismantling that thing"

The Bear: "It'll blow away"

Daddy Poppins: "Me Arse!, it's secured into the ground with big bloody pegs!"

Narrator: "You know he's going to regret that shit"

Daddy Poppins: "Not you again! You only pop up when crap is going wrong!"

Narrator: "I'm on a zero hour contract. They only call me in when they need me!"

Daddy Poppins: "When I make a fool of myself"

Narrator: "You said it, not me"

Daddy Poppins: "I don't care. I'm sticking to my guns. It's all crap. They don't have hurricanes in Ireland"

Narrator: "We'll see" *winks

*He's just a voice (a smarmy one at that) but I'm presuming he winked.

So I did the minimum... loaded most garden stuff in the shed, but the trampoline, Hell No.

Being a man I always think I'm right. It's an affliction. So to compound this affliction, I nailed my flag to the mast. Stuck my neck out.

*This tweet was sponsored by lots of red wine

So the morning came.


Current weather status: Nothing.

Current Daddy Poppins status: Hungover



Current weather status: Nothing, OK, maybe say, 'light winds'.

Current Daddy Poppins status: Hungover but smug.

Daddy Poppins: "Ya see Bear"

The Bear: "Its shifted away from us a bit"

Daddy Poppins: "excuses excuses"



Current weather status: Still 'pretty light winds'.

Current Daddy Poppins status: Still hungover and still smug.

Daddy Poppins: "Oh WOW!! look at that storm!" /end sarcasm

The Bear: "It's not due here till later"

Daddy Poppins: "Daddy Poppins reserves the right to say 'I told ya so' at a later date"

The Bear: "Talking about yourself in the 3rd person again, eh?"



Current weather status: Windy.

Current Daddy Poppins status: Hungover and no longer smug

Daddy Poppins: "It's just a bit of wind"

The Bear: "You should have taken down the trampoline"



Current weather status: Very Windy

Current Daddy Poppins status: 'Mmmmm, should that tree be growing at a 45 degree angle? Maybe I should have listened to that narrator'

Narrator: "I told ya so"


Current weather status: VERY VERY Windy

Current Daddy Poppins status: 'I'm going to be eating my words here'

The Bear: "The trampoline just lifted a foot off the ground"

Daddy Poppins: "Ah for Fuck Sake!!"

*goes out to check the pegs and take down the safety net (that's now acting as a sail)

That would have been a much easier job yesterday, wouldn’t it
— The Bear, oozing smugness


Current weather status: Actual Hurricane!! (*Why didn't someone warn us?)

Current Daddy Poppins status: 'I'm never going to hear the end of this!'


*At this stage the trampoline is sideways against the back wall

Daddy Poppins: "Right I'm going to sort this"

The Bear: "It's not worth it"

Daddy Poppins: *mutters under breath "I'd prefer be dead than have to listen to the aftermath of that thing blowing away"

*So, Daddy Poppins goes out a second time.

How do you secure a trampoline in a hurricane?

Well, do you remember that sandpit that it'd take 3 people to move?


I might be wrong but I apparently have 'super human storm strength' 

I might be wrong but I apparently have 'super human storm strength

Still I suppose it could be worse:


Daddy Poppins would like to thank his wonderful wife* for the lovely photos* in this blog and state for the record that she is always right* and that he was not in any way under duress* while making this statement #sendhelp

Till next time,

Daddy P.

Musical Beds

 * Disclaimer: this is NOT a review for some amazing new bed which sings your kids to sleep (but if anyone out there has such a lifesaving product I'd love to hear from you). This is just me checking the lay of the land with other parents (a normality check of my family, if you will). 

Does your family play 'Musical Beds'?

OK, let me answer the first question you probably have first, what is 'Musical Beds'? 

Musical Beds is a nocturnal version of the popular children's party game 'musical chairs'. Essentially how it works is that everyone goes to bed, like normal*

*another disclaimer: Daddy Poppins use of the word 'normal' does not indicate any sense of 'normality of bedtime' in his household. It's used in looser sense of the term, meaning: that the selected person starts the night in the selected bed (even if sometimes the 'selected bed' is not their 'originally appointed' bed, such as when; his little man selects Daddy's half (not that he actually gets half) of him and his wifes bed or when he's 'selected' by his wife to sleep in the 'dog house/spare room' or last but not least when he's been up till 3am playing the PlayStation and 'selects' the bed in the spare room so he can pretend he was in bed at a reasonable hour)  

Anyway I digress, so beds have been selected and everyone is finally asleep.


As a parent you've probably played 'musical beds' without even realising. It's essentially when you all sleep in at least one other bed during the course of the night. Some nights it's a pretty simple affair, with only one or two moves, other nights it has more moves than a grandmasters chess match.

The first move is usually something quiet simple, a list of which can be found below: 

  • The 'I'm sleeping in the spare room and you're minding the kids because I've an important meeting in the morning and need my sleep tonight' manoeuvre. 
  • The 'I did last f**king night it's your turn' spare room manoeuvre.  
  • The 'I'm going to get out of my comfy bed and sleep on daddy/mammy's face' move.  
  • The 'I'm sick of waking up with a kid on my face' move
  • The 'if you don't stop snoring or sleep elsewhere I'll cut your balls off' move (/ultimatum)
  • The 'stop elbowing me in the ribs for snoring every time I actually get to sleep' move.
  • The 'I'm lonely in my bed, can I get in with you' move.
  • The 'forget which bed you started in after a trip to the toilet' move.
  • The 'I've had a bad dream/I'm sick' move (a classic)  
  • The 'sleepwalking into your mother in laws room after a few too many drinks' move (side note: this one doesn't end well

Please note: this is just a selection of available moves and other variations may be used depending on the household  

Also note: like a Game of football there are both home and away games. Away games are much more difficult (see: sleepwalking into your mother in laws room) 



The results of last nights game: 

I could explain all the 'ins and outs' (pun very much intended) to you in great detail but we'd be here all day (🤔 Maybe 'night' is a more appropriate word here).

Let me just give you a brief synopsis: 

There's 4 viable beds in our house, 3 people slept in 2 beds each, one bed went completely unused, one person slept in 3 beds (and is now asleep face down on the couch), there was a 4am bath and laundry run (due to a wee incident), Daddy Poppins played the 'stay up playing FIFA' card, oh and the dog slept soundly all night, right in the centre of Daddy Poppins bed.


Wait a second, you said it was a game. Who wins?

Nobody, Nobody wins.


Have you only just realised that you too play 'Musical beds'? 

 Hit me with your funny night time 'moves' in the comments  

The Big Bad World versus my own little World

I've a question. And it's a big one. OK, it's lots of big ones!!

‪So here's the deal, I skim through what's going on in the world then choose ignore it or possibly make fun of it (it's a coping mechanism, of sorts)‬

Is it wrong?


I mean, I understand that as a white male born in a developed 1st world country that I'm privileged. It's the way the world is. I hate to say it but it is.

(Would I have the same thought processes if I was born in a war torn 3rd world country or elsewhere as an oppressed minority? I doubt it)

But, as it stands, I believe in shielding my kids (and even myself if I'm honest) from; danger, harm, hatred and the racist rhetoric that seems to all around in today's 24/7 rolling news culture.

Look, I'm certain the world hasn't changed a huge amount in the last 50 years (in fact there's plenty of reports stating that if anything it's a safer place now that it ever was), it's just in this 'social media age' everything is at your fingertips, a beat is never missed; from ISIS beheading videos to fascism and modern day Nazis. You hear the news "as it happens" (to coin a popular news networks tagline).

So my questions are....

  • Do I really need to listen to everything that's going on in the world?

  • Is it wrong for me to hide away from this constant barrage of crap and tell dad jokes and have fun with my kids?

  • Is it wrong that I chose to read the sport section and skip the crap? (I'm sure it's not crap to others who are 'living it').

  • Should I be doing more?

  • Am I part of the problem by not standing up to these things?

  • Can one person make a difference in such entrenched matters and views?

  • Is sitting back from world news and just living by the creed that you 'treat those around you the same way you'd like to be treated' (no matter what their race or religion is) OK?

  • In 50 years time will the same battles be ongoing and (if I'm still alive) will I look back and wish I had been more involved in trying to change the world rather than enjoying my own little world?


I'd really love to know your thoughts.

The 20 Scariest Horror films to watch this Halloween

Daddy Poppins loves films of all kinds but one of his favourite genres is horror. The following is a list of films he'd watch again (if he's ever awake enough once his nocturnal kids have finally gone to sleep, that is).

So this Halloween, get the kids in bed, snuggle up on the couch, turn off all the lights and get stuck in to one of these scary films.... (hopefully there's something here you've missed out on)

freddie krueger

The Conjuring:

One of the best 'possession/paranormal investigation' style films of recent times (2013 to be exact). It's loosely based on the Warrens and it's full of tension with just enough jump scares to keep your heart pounding. Well worth a watch.

It Follows:

You may have passed this one over, I know I did, but it's great. Its about a teenage girl who gets pursued by an entity after a one night stand, the only way to get rid of this entity appears to be to pass it on to someone else in the same way. It's available now on Netflix and ticks all the boxes to scare the pants off you.

  • Creepy sound track ✅
  • Supernatural unstoppable force ✅
  • Slow deliberate killer ✅


1 of only 2 foreign language films on the list (although I did come close to also including both Them and Let the right one in). It's a cracker of a film (even for those scared of subtitles) and once it gets going you'll forget it's in Portuguese. In my opinion this is the best 'found footage/camcorder view' horror movie out there (its 10 times the film the Blair Witch will ever be). Its about a documentary crew going out on the job with a group of firefighters in Barcelona, lets just say it isn't a normal call out. If you haven't seen it then you should.

Wolf Creek:

This one gave my wife (the Bear) the 'heebie jeebies' for weeks after watching it. Basically, some backpackers take a lift from the wrong man deep in the Australian outback. If a more realistic horror film rather than a supernatural one gets your heart pumping then I can highly recommend it. The Bear does not recommend it. That's how real and frightening it is

Evil Dead:

I'm plumping for the recent version, now hear me out, I love the original trilogy but in 2017 they just aren't scary. They're comedy horror in my book and so aren't on this list for the same reason as the likes of Shaun of the Dead isn't. It's Halloween people!! Get yourself scared with the remake, the intro of which (see video below) is unbelievable!! oh and its available on Netflix too. #bonus

30 Days of Night:

What a concept!! Trapped in a village in northern Alaska that experiences no daylight for 30 days during the winter. You're a veritable 'vampire buffet'. It's really well made too. The scene where the person is being stalked through the streets is top notch and there's jump scares to beat the band. (It was my 'kids are in bed' film last Halloween). The whole film is on youtube ssssshhhhh!!

28 Days Later:

is a classic, a modern zombie apocalypse film with substance and style. How can you not love a Danny Boyle Zombie flick? Yes, I know, I could have included 'Dawn of the Dead' or any of the original George A. Romero zombie classics but once again I feel the effects are dated to the point that they're no longer frightening. The scene where he wakes up in a deserted central London is brilliantly done.


Boom, Wes Craven eh? The man is a legend. If you are looking for a high quality flashy 'Hollywood horror' then this is the way to go. Some really iconic scenes (like the Drew Barrymore intro). I presume you haven't been living in a cave and have already seen it. And I understand it's a real 'watch once, who done it' kinda film but when did you last see it eh? It's 21 years old now after all!! How many jump scares have you forgotten? Maybe it is worth a second look? Or maybe you have a teen you'd like to scare the pants off!!

The Ring:

Creepy as be damned, This Hollywood remake is a class act, worth another watch for that 'TV scene' alone. God she's scary.

7 Days!!
— Yer one with the hair


The second James Wan film on the list and another modern classic of horror cinema, made for peanuts, with a great twist and plenty of moral dilemmas and gore thrown in. Brilliant the first time around, well worth another viewing.

The Shining:

Stephen King wrote all the best horror/thrillers when I was a teen (IT, Kujo, Salem's Lot, The Fog, Misery) but Stanley Kubrick's 'the Shining' is his stand out film for me. Jack Nicholson's decent into madness is pretty much perfect. What horror films list would be complete without it.  "Heeeeerrrreeeee's Johnny!!"

Get Out:

I watched this recently and thought it was great, a real creepy, atmospheric psychological story full of racial tension. Gripping stuff. (OK the ending isn't as good as the build up, but it doesn't descent into farce like, say, Jeepers Creepers).


The quintessential 'space horror' (No, I'm not forgetting Event Horizon'), sometimes omitted from these type of lists due to its setting (but remember, "in space no one can hear you scream") I defy you not to be scared while watching this masterpiece. How can I include this in your list and leave out other older classics? I hear you ask. Well, Sir Ridley Scott's clever use of darkness and hiding our view of the alien itself means the effects have stood the test of time better than some other films of its time. Plus it gets your blood pumping no matter how many times you've seen it (Yes, I'll accept the argument that Aliens was perhaps a better film, but it didnt have that 'chestburster scene' did it??)


An absolute classic. The 'you're being watched' camera angles and that creepy piano soundtrack racks up the tension till the blood starts flowing and Michael Meyers racks up the body count. Jamie Lee Curtis shows us why she is the queen of 'scream queens' in this timeless masterpiece. It'll be on the TV around Halloween, or I'll eat my hat. (The new Rob Zombie version isnt bad either)

Nightmare on Elm street:

Wes Craven makes my list again. This scared the life out of me as a child/teen. We all have to sleep, yeah? So how do you escape from a monster that attacks you in your dreams? OK, I haven't watched this one in a long time. Maybe it's incredibly dated and my reasoning for not including some other films is flawed but on the flip side .."1,2 Freddie's coming for you".

Texas Chainsaw Massacre:

What's scarier than crazy mutated rednecks with a penchant for murdering. OK besides Donald Trump having access to the nuclear codes. (If it has to be more modern for you then the 2010 version isn't too bad either)

The Exorcist:

The grandfather of horror, gripping. The effects in this have stood the test of time (to a point). OK, it really doesn't get going till (as the name suggests) the exorcism starts but it's 'head twistingly' good.

Side note: do not eat pea soup while watching it.


Who says Stephen Spielberg only does kids films,eh? Such an iconic film, even mentioning it makes you think "Du, De, Du, De, Du, De" (the scariest 2 piano keys ever!) Once again the power of this film is it's realism. There's nothing supernatural involved, just a big bloody shark. Even when swimming in the Irish Sea it still makes me jump when I feel something touch my leg. It's embedded in my mind. A classic.


Dare you say his name 5 times in the mirror? This is a sometimes forgotten horror classic.  From the initial overhead 'shining-esque' car footage to the creepy urban myths and excellent 'police station' scene this film has everything you want in a horror. (OK, maybe not the bees but I'll get over it 😉)

Pan's Labyrinth:

Right Folks, I'm kinda breaking my 'has to scare the pants off you' rule a tad. But this is a hell of a story, I love Guillermo del Toro, what a director! If you haven't seen this film then get on it straight away. It is in Spanish but once again you'll forget it's in a different language in minutes. It's a very dark modern day fairy tale set in Franco's Spain that packs a hell of a punch. Top notch.


That's it. 20 scary films. (Sorry about the loading time but i really wanted a video preview for them all). I could have included 20 more but really long lists bore the crap outta me and I'm assuming you feel the same.


I'd love you to tell me what's missing in your opinion or watch something you've missed and let me know what you thought in the comments. 


Till next time.


Daddy P, out


*Mic drop.

Bloggers and Christmas

I'm a f**kin' Scrooge. (No, not really). I love Christmas.

But Christmas is 'at Christmas'.


Early Xmas makes me angry. You wouldn't like me when I'm angry!! 😡 


I wrote a post last year about putting up your tree, spurned on by neighbours who seemed to start their Christmas in November. This year I'm a blogger and it's already started!!! (Christmas preparations that is)


Look I'm all up for festivities but like most people by the time my family has been torn apart arguing over the rules to a new board game, full of 'liquid festive cheer'


I am no longer 'festive', I'm slightly drunk, full of turkey (and the 'wind' that follows) and yearning to just 'get back to normal'; no more 'visiting' or being 'visited', no more fecking boxes of sweets for breakfast, buying last minute 'passable gifts' in a late night chemists or accepting cheap packs of jocks from Santa.  It's after dinner on the 25th of December, the presents have been given and accepted (some begrudgingly), Christmas is officially done in my head. It's time for that lull. The 'endless Sunday' that is the the time between Christmas and New Years (don't even get me started on that sham of a day/night) now has to be endured.


Get to the point. What are you saying Daddy Poppins?


Well I'm saying that Christmas is on the 25th of December between about around 7/8am and 3/4pm, anyone who says different is taking shite.


These people who try start it earlier are all about the C word. Nope not Christmas itself. The other one. The bad C word. The one that 'sounds like runt'.


Sidenote: This is a great way to win at a game of charades in which I've made the answers after my Christmas cheer is gone. 


 Sidenote 2: Don't ask me to do charades answers after my Christmas cheer is gone.


Anyway I digress, did you know that 'blogger Christmas' starts now?


"I'm doing Blogmas"

"Really, F off!!"


"Would you like to be considered for my Xmas gift guide?"

Translation: I'd like to set up the receiving of free shit for Christmas

"It's bloody September"


"Are you going to Xmas Blog on?"

"Is it happening on the 25th of December, cos I'm busy doing the whole Santa thing then eating lots, drinking, watching crap films and fighting with my family"

The Poppins clan after Christmas dinner

The Poppins clan after Christmas dinner

"No, it's on now"

"In September? The kids are only back in bloody school"

"Yeah but PRs are planning for Christmas"


As you can probably tell I've a bit of an issue with the commercialism of Christmas (or the 'holiday season' as it's now called: no point alienating the other major religions when you're trying to sell your product eh?). 

Last year, new to blogging, I wrote about it starting in late November and it even got me a second Christmas piece in the journal, but this year I'm officially 'a blogger', if I knew it meant Christmas started even earlier I dunno if I'd have ever started this journey.


"But what will you write about at Christmas, if you aren't contacting PRs now?"

"Who bloody knows?!"

"I might give in but not in September!!"

No, like, seriously, is this ‘planning Christmas in September’ honestly the norm or have you bloggers all pooled together to wind me up?
— Daddy Poppins


"Wait a second, Daddy Poppins!! Aren't you actually writing about Christmas now?"

"Mmmmmmmmm, Ok, yes, I am"

"In September"

"Don't rub it in, I've already cursed way too many times in this blog"


So what exactly is your point?


Well, Christmas is early enough, stop making 6 months out of 6 hours. Look I understand the concpet of being prepared (I was a scout as a kid) and so I'll play along a bit so I'm not sitting twiddling my thumbs in December wondering why I hadn't approached PRs about bloody gift guides and the like but honestly it's really breaking me doing it in September

So with that in mind....


Yup. I've sold out.

*Although you'll notice there's no mention of Christmas in my #Prrequest (that's my get out clause)

(No I didn't say 'Claus')

I'm the Iggy pop of the radical dad blogger world. So with that in mind if your are looking for an honest review or unique (see above*) blogger to collaborate with then hit me up at daddypoppinsireland@gmail.com

I don't always curse but do provide 'content that stands out'


Just don't tell anyone I broke this early OK?

Press retweet and share this then look into this little red light


DISCLAIMER: Please note that this blog should be taken with a pinch of salt, actually scratch that, enough salt to induce instant kidney failure, although Daddy Poppins is a grumpy old shite, he still accepts that the whole month of December is in fact 'Christmas'. Lets agree to wait till after Halloween at least, eh lads and ladies?

Waiting for my child to fall asleep (in Meme form)

I might do better with less sleep that a most people but I'd prefer my  'night owl' activities be of my own making and involve more PlayStation, boxsets, movies and craft beer rather than the Gruffallo and 'baby nightime wind down' songs (and being used as 'a human climbing frame'). So as I wait for 'the Boo' to literally drop with tiredness, I've decided to express my feelings through memes.

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Settling in at a crèche

Firstly and fore mostly, its not Daddy Poppins that needs settling in a creche, even if the Bear may suggest that he 'needs bloody help' on a regular basis. I'm talking about when your kids need to enter some kind of childcare, of course!

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Illumibowl - Review and Giveaway

So Daddy Poppins is mid school run; the sink is full of dishes, the breakfast is in full flow, the dog is going ballistic at the the patio door window at some birds in the back garden and Daddy Poppins is regretting his late night gaming and craft beer session with every second that passes. Then a shriek from upstairs cuts through the breakfast melee....

The Bear: I'll kill you!!

Daddy Poppins: (pauses think 'what did I do?') What?

The Bear: I just sat in pee!!

Daddy Poppins: (*kind of remembers stumbling round in the dark last night trying to find the toilet and 'letting fly' in hope, waiting to hear the porcelain or water sound rather than feel the splash of warm liquid in his shins) Your own pee or someone else's? (He bravely ventures)

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What I've learned from watching Boss Baby (repetitively)

What I've learned from watching Boss Baby 3 times a day for a over a month..

  • My second child went to baby business school too 
  • My little Boss Baby loves Boss Baby
  • It might be repetitive but it gives you an hour to get shit done
  • If you watch too much Boss Baby you will ponder the correlation between the cuteness of babies and dogs
  • You'll get tired of Boss Bay before your child will
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