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CHECK you Gwyneth Paltrow!

A couple of things have been revealed this week about her home life which left me a bit open-mouthed... well, maybe more lips parted.

Firstly, she's admitted her kids are addicted to the Wii.

Who'd have thought organic muesli fritter-making yummy mummy Gwyneth would allow her kids to play on a games console? She IS human! She tweeted "How the f do i get these kids off the wii? I swore i would never have one in the house, now they freebase Mario."

I love some of the responses she got though. One follower suggested she sent them to Wii-hab. Brilliant.

Another said: "I reluctantly let my kids play - now one's a computer scientist, the other a marine biologist/geek. Don't fret, keep shoving out the love and they'll turn out fine."

I have to say, we're putting off introducing Dyl to any sort of computer game, as we know he'll get hooked and then just spend hours whining to play on it. Obviously, there's no way of shielding your kids from this forever, he'll go to a friend's house one day soon, and witness the wonders of Lego Star Wars or Sonic... but the longer I can hold it off the better.

Gwyneth also admitted that she gave in to her daughter's demands to have her ears pierced.

Apple had them pierced at five years old, having apparently nagged Chris and Gwyn since she was two.

The reason behind Apple's desire for pierced ears, according to Gwyn, is that their nanny is Spanish, and the kids are "very much connected to the Spanish culture, and in Spain little girls get their ears pierced when they're born."

Apple's question was: "Why can't I have my ears pierced too?" A doctor in the US, author of "The Self Aware Parent" (the title alone makes me groan) has a big problem with Ms Paltrow's decision.

She claims that: "Giving in to your toddler or youngster's demands may be reinforcing the very thing you want to get rid of. You are inadvertently teaching your child to fight you longer and harder next time.

"Parents must create a structure with clear boundaries that reflect their personal family values."

I kind of agree, but three years is hardly "giving in" is it? One of the best pieces of advice I've been given in parenting, is "pick your fights". I often have to take a step back, when I'm insisting on something with the kids, and ask myself: "Is this really that important in the scheme of things?" Keep things in perspective, that's what you've got to try and remember. Saying that, if Una thinks she's having her ears pierced any time in the near future, she's going to be HUGELY disappointed.

JOUSTING AND TRUSTWORTHINESS MAKE A GREAT CITY LAST weekend, my four-year-old, Dylan, experienced something I think he'll remember for the rest of his life. We went to Joust at Cardiff Castle - and it was AMAZING!

You know when you really build up to something, you're so excited, and then the actuality is not as good as the anticipation? This did not happen.

Dyl's been looking forward to this for months, he is obsessed by knights (closely followed by pirates and dinosaurs) ... and got dressed up in his full costume, shield, sword and helmet to accessorise.

Magical is an understatement. There were medieval tents showing how to make coins and cook olde worlde styley.

Dylan had a sword fighting lesson, followed by one of the most entertaining 'shows' I've ever experienced. The Jousting. Utterly brilliant, and his face as he watched 'knights' cantering towards each other with lances, basically in a bid to beat the **** out of each other is something I will never forget. He was awestruck and mesmerised, and for me, it was priceless. The only downside to the day, was when I realised I'd left my husband's jacket with my phone in the pocket, in the cubicle of the Sophia Gardens toilets! And by the time we realised, they were shut for the day, bugger.

I think if it had been any other city, I'd have never seen those two items again. Unbelievably, I picked them up the next day - thus saving myself a shed-load of stress and money. I loves the 'Diff! Ironically though, my two-year-old Una decided that on the same night, my husband's phone needed a bath.


Gwyneth Paltrow
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Wales On Sunday (Cardiff, Wales)
Date:Jun 26, 2011
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