Wednesday, 27 April 2011

Easter, thrills and spills

Long time no see. K is watching football and I am not at wibblies tonight so I thought I'd crack on.

So, I left you pre-Easter. I departed for Mum's on Good Friday (sans the manny) and the children were extremely happy to be back in the big garden with the ready assembled and filled paddling pool (warm water such is the luxury at mum's) and bouncy castle. For some reason my lovely father had a real distaste for paying to hire bouncy castles for children's parties and in fact, one memorable year he cancelled my mother's birthday treat after she ordered one for a party for one of my sister's girls. I couldn't be 100% certain the two were definitely linked but it is now a running joke, and after he died, mum bought her own bouncy castle with a massive slide from a man in the village, as you do. Mum's village is a bit like that, it is a small Suffolk village with a pub, village hall and a main road on the outskirts housing the car sales showroom, herb farm and church. (As an aside, the church itself is very sweet although it is not in the most salubrious of positions which is upsetting as it ruins the overall charm - although I got married there which I like to think does give it a certain je ne sais quoi). Anyhoo suffice to say there is always 'someone in the village' who can or has whatever it is you need or need help with, be it a pint of milk, clothes alteration or a bouncy castle.

So, as we turned into the drive and the sun was shining and we rocked up to see the bouncy castle and pool in full swing it was all very over exciting. I only tell you this as it sets the scene, not in a bragging kind of a way. Although actually it isn't at all bragging - that would be if I told you about our fabulous Easter holiday we had just come back from in some exclusive hotel/holiday home. As we can't afford any kind of holiday, it is jolly lucky that mum has a garden so well equipped. So there we were, all excited, I got Bea and Ted out of the car but George had taken offence at his younger cousin already enjoying the facilities on offer and decided to have a sit in in protest. Mum tried first and then I did but nothing would budge George from his car seat so I gave up and went in to the house. Eventually sense prevailed, he got out of the car and the afternoon was a roaring success with the sun shining, the children having the time of their lives and culminating in the eventual arrival of the younger sister and new fiance. The excitement continued with the arrival of a stray sheep in mum's garden on Friday night. New fiance spotted it first, whereupon mum told him he was mistaken and it must be a deer, cue much hilarity at her expense. Followed by lots of ringing of the RSPCA - they don't deal with lost sheep - then the local police station but they didn't answer and so Mum rang 'someone in the village' who promised to collect the sheep in the morning should it be necessary. It wasn't, as he hung around just long enough for the children to see him first thing and then buggered off for new excitement through a hole in the hedge.

Again, this sets the scene, as it was later on that morning that I realised at somepoint during the gaiety of the previous day I had lost my car keys. Cue many hours of searching by the six adults and a few half hearted attempts by the children, for the missing keys. Mum was convinced she had seen them on the table outside before we served the children tea, as was I, cue emptying of the bin. No keys. K suggested via phone that we check all toys as Ted had recently hidden his in the playroom, cue thorough searching of the playhouse, sifting of the sandpit and investigating of every toy Ted had been near. No keys. We even looked at every flower pot in the garden as, many years ago, my niece had hidden my old car keys in a flower pot, under a piece of paper on the terrace of a holiday home in which we were staying. We only discovered them after many tense and stressful hours search, when we gave up and went to the beach, whereupon she told us exactly where she had hidden them with a tone of voice that suggested we had been rather stupid for not asking her to begin with. The car was also thoroughly investigated both inside and underneath by at least four of the six adults staying for the weekend and so by Saturday night I was utterly convinced I would never see them again and that Ted had managed to hide them in a place we would not discover for many years to come. Cue me ringing K and him duly tracking down the spare key and arranging to travel down no Easter Sunday to rescue his ditzy damsel in distress. So it was that as the new fiance and I made our way to his car on Sunday morning to collect K from the train station, he brought my attention to the swarm of flies hovering around my car. I looked and immediately shrieked, as there, glinting in the sun were my keys - on top of the tall people carrier where I had chucked them 48 hours before whilst trying to coax G to get out of it. My mother was not happy and berated me for 'making everyone's life a misery all weekend' but I was desperately relieved and very happy, although obviously I felt a little sheepish informing K after his 8.30 am departure and three hour journey from London. Still, every cloud has a silver lining and he got to enjoy a lovely few days in the sun with his children and rather comprehensive barbecue fodder and I in turn will make a point of putting my keys in the key pot the instant I arrive at mum's in all future visits.

Miserably me losing things is 'typical me'. I also tend to spill things down my front whilst eating and drinking. It is called 'doing a licci' (my nickname). Little sis spent many a 'hilarious' family meal taking the piss out of me and my messy tops. I blame my chest. She is not so blessed in that department so eating at the table would be easier for her, mine just naturally get in the way without me realising. I also knock drinks over quite a lot. Again this didn't sit well with my dad, which just made me more likely to spill for some reason. Every time we stayed in a particular hotel at Gatwick before our summer holidays, I used to spill my diet coke at our evening dinner - EVERY YEAR. I have no idea why this hotel caused such a reaction but I do remember his face every time I did it. It caused a fuss as well, which I should think was the main issue - as well as the 'waste'. I shall not tell you what he said when I accidentally spilt wine. Actually, I remember once we were in a hotel and during breakfast I pressed down on the plate to cut my bacon and managed to spill the entire plate of scrambled egg, bacon and toast into my lap. Turns out the plate was only half on the table and I hadn't noticed. That caused a lot of fuss. I think I suffer from some kind of clumsy disease. One day in the future they will discover what it is and just like dyslexia me and my fellow sufferers will be vindicated after years of abuse at our expense. I shall set up a charity to help children who suffer as I did.

Oh golly, this has gone on too long and you must be desperate to get off - I shall be quick. Suffice to say, Easter happened, chocolate, sun, burnt shoulders, packed up, came home, back to school, more wibblies training (oh GOD have got to tell you next time about bizarre woman from last night) and then weigh in this morning (stayed the same which was massively disappointing as I had been ridiculously restrained over Easter and now 'the powers that be' are going to be distinctly miffed at my scale stagnation) then more wibblies training this afternoon in Enfield. The END.

Thursday, 21 April 2011


I have managed to squeeze you in today. Life has gone a bit Weight Watchers mad. I'm not sure I particularly like it, although it has given me a new found respect for working mothers. I used to think they had an easy ride of it but I may well have had that wrong. My brain aches from being split in so many different directions and I feel guilty about everything.
So to get you caught up, I made it safely home from Bristol on Sunday evening, picked up the big children from my sister's in Kent on Monday (George took one look at me and shouted that he did NOT want to go home; nice), drove back home from Kent and then went to yet another Weight Watchers meeting in the evening.  I weighed in my first new member and managed to imply that she might want to cry at the result. Clearly not the official wibblies way, which they had painstakingly tried to instill in me at training, but she had weighed in at 20st 9lbs and she showed no emotion or reaction whatsoever so I felt I had to fill the silence. I managed to back track slightly by saying that was what I had done when I first weighed in (I hasten to say I did not, as I thought the leader had written my weight down wrongly as I could not possibly weigh that much, such was my delusion). I kind of thought anything over 20st was a given for tears, but it is all a learning curve. Hey ho.

I'm still struggling with the idea of me being in a position of authority when it comes to weight loss, not only as I am still a stone from my goal, but I managed to gain two pounds over the training weekend. There was no special food provided for us, it was just normal hotel fayre and two of the three meals a day were buffet style, which was an incredibly dangerous state of affairs for fifteen confirmed over eaters. On the final day, knowing that we weren't going to eat a free three course evening meal, we all made the most of the final free buffet lunch. Some of the women even made the waiter open up a closed food stand so we could all carry on gorging on chocolate raisins. For the rest of the afternoon I had to sit with my belt and top button undone and slouched down in the chair so that my body didn't bend in the middle. That is also, very much, not the Weight Watchers way which, for those wondering is 'Eat until you are comfortably satisfied, not uncomfortably full.' Just do as I say, not as I do. Shockingly there are rumours filtering down from the area manager via my leader that I might not be sticking to the plan

Actually I am getting quite sick of talking about myself, I have to start all my training meetings by telling  my weight loss 'success' story and I am now quite fed up with it.  I even had to do it today at the excitingly entitled 'Admin and etally training' (at Gatwick airport which is cruel - show us people jetting off to exciting Easter breaks and then stick us in a cold conference room at the Holiday Inn and make us look at spreadsheets before releasing us into rush hour traffic). I did my first meeting in its entirety yesterday. I don't want to go into all the dull details but I was petrified, particularly as I had my trainer watching and assessing me. It turns out I don't handle pressure very well. I don't handle tension of any kind actually. I like my little life where the most exciting thing to happen is an impromptu coffee morning invite. Now I have a constant stress over the next part of my training, not only the actual event but also the childcare arrangements which need to be in place before I can even leave the house. Thankfully the manny is still around - but only just - he is sort of back at work although nothing is totally confirmed. It is too confusing to try and explain so I shall await concrete confirmation before I bore you with the details.

I have never dealt with pressure or stress - I can't even watch a tense film - and that includes some Disney ones. Any tension whatsoever is too much for me. I like my world simple and stress free. I think I was overburdened with the empathy gene as well as the lazy gene, so I tend to imagine the feelings of the actors on screen far too acutely.  Basically this rules out me enjoying any film including kidnap, horror, potential horror, murder, any death, any suspense, any violence, any drug taking, scary looks, villainous acts of any description etc - so that leaves me with some kids films and all rom coms. (Which is why in my world there is always a happy ending and an eloquent and charming man to say the right thing at just the right time - bet you're all wishing you lived in my world now). For any of those who have watched Lazy Town, I sometimes get far too worried that Robbie Rotten might actually get the better of Stephanie and Sportacus and have, at times, had to leave the room. Bea and George get quite annoyed by me already. I think I could improve upon this so that by the time they are pre-teens I am totally, mortifyingly embarrassing in front of them and their friends. I have already worked out some incredibly embarrassing mum-dancing. I shall begin unveiling it at their Auntie's wedding - Bea is definitely at an age where she understands and by next summer she will be seven and a half which is prime embarrassing territory. 

With the wedding in mind, I will leave you on an 'ahhhh' note, as my sister has asked me to do the father of the bride speech at her wedding (for those not up to speed, the father of the bride is sadly deceased so it's an honour not a snub). I was truly choked up when I saw the text (little sister is not one to waste time talking to family), although obviously I am now very stressed about it too. She hasn't even booked the venue yet so it will be a long, drawn out tension. To alleviate some of the worry, I shall be testing out amusing anecdotes on you over the next twelve months and will need constructive feedback.

I am dangerously close to over eating right now, so I must leave you quickly and go to bed so that there is a floor between me and the chocolate (lazy gene prevents me descending the stairs after final ascension).  Ciao x

Saturday, 16 April 2011

Quickie Wibbly

I can't possibly devote any time to you - I am far too busy being Mrs Wibbly. I am now totally sold on the whole thing. It is actually loads of fun - I laughed today until I cried. It's been ages since I did that. It's even better knowing that the children are incredibly happy without me. I haven't spoken to George who appears totally indifferent to my absence. He hasn't even asked where I am. Bea has been slightly more loyal and asked why I am taking so long at 'waitrose' - for some reason she has got into her head that weight watchers and Waitrose are one in the same. It is sweet so I have allowed the confusion to continue. Although when she is 15 she will no doubt tell everyone that I abandoned her for three days to do a supermarket shop.  Ted has adapted beautifully to having his father as the primary carer and although he has deigned to listen to me singing row, row, row the boat down the phone he hasn't attempted any reciprocal communication. All adults responsible for the offspring are gleefully telling me how happy they are without me around. Which is nice. Obviously it would be horrid if they were crying for 72 hours but I would have liked at least a small sign that they are missing the services I would normally be providing for them. Still, mustn't grumble.

I have to go now as I have to run a 15 minute mock meeting tomorrow morning and although you may mock (ha ha) it is actually harder than you think. Apparently I tend to talk too much (pause for shock); I know. I couldn't believe it either. Whilst others were worried about filling the ten minute practise we did this morning I was told to wrap things up as I had gone on too long - which threw me completely. I think time must pass differently in my head because I had imagined my short success story had been just that. Still, the other women who I had been so ridiculously mean about in my pre-weekend judgements actually turn out to be totally lovely and one is even my age and pretty similar to me which has been a total revelation. It's like being back at school and the whole weekend has made me totally nostalgic for those days when you spent every day laughing and joking. Not that the children don't make me laugh but obviously it's different. I can't believe I'm saying this but a part of me will actually be quite sad to leave tomorrow. 

But go I must then and now, so toodlepip peeps and please feel free to massively over eat over the coming month as I shall have a warm and welcoming wibblies meeting waiting for you to attend very soon......


Friday, 15 April 2011

Working Wibbly

Bonjour! Hello and welcome to Bristol. I am at my hotel desk today listening to music from my iphone - terribly sophisticated. So where did I leave you? Oh yes in sunny Suffolk. A lot has changed since then. I have left two children with their grandma, driven back to the joyous SE23 and deposited Damian (or Dames which my mother has now abbreviated it to) with K and then carried on my journey to a slightly depressing business park on the outskirts of Bristol exotically named Aztec West. It took a bloody long time to get here and I was insistent (as was K) that I put Dames to bed first so I didn't leave til gone 7 and got here at an unholy time of the night. Still, after a bath and painting of nails I felt a lot better.

The day of departure itself was horrific and seemingly never ending as I was incredibly over emotional. I felt like I was saying goodbye to the children forever, not just for three days and four nights. I realised on the long drive that I have become totally institutionalised. That always makes me think of Morgan Freeman on Shawshank redemption - although obviously mine isn't as bad as being incarcerated in a maximum security prison - I do think I have become too frightened of life outside my own comfortable four walls. I spent most of Thursday in tears at the thought of leaving the children and going into the 'unknown'. It didn't help that Bea didn't feel well which made her quite clingy so she kept crying which set me off, but it also seems so extremely odd to not be with my children. Especially Ted, I have never left him for this length of time so I had convinced myself that he would assume I had abandoned him and in the end even he started to wonder why the water kept pouring from my eyes. He stopped eating and starting pointing to my face and then looking at K as if he was asking him what the hell was going on. That stopped the flow momentarily. K shrugged in answer.  Ted accepted that. Men are an odd bunch.

Safe to say I did not die on the way down, as I had feared might happen (I had of course run through the obligatory Casualty scenario in my head numerous times pre-departure). I am here and well and so far all is going ok. I am not the social outcast I feared I might be with a stone still to lose as there seems to be a reassuring number of people who are not yet at their goal weight - although I was the first of our group to walk into the communal dining area for lunch and the waiter looked at me and immediately said 'Weight Watchers group' as if it was obvious which I thought was unnecessarily cruel. Anyhoo we are also in a smaller group than I had imagined. There are only 15 of us so we are all getting to know each other and getting on quite nicely.  Having said that there are most definitely the swots of the group which grates slightly. I don't know why but I don't enjoy being organised when expected to be, so a part of me quite relishes being the only one in the room without all the proper paraphernalia expected whilst the other half is actually quite embarrassed and worried the Trainers might point me out as being useless. I don't even have a proper 'before' photo printed out. And I am most definitely the most lax at tracking my food. (I haven't told them my theory of food on holiday not actually counting - they made us do an hour of myth busting today which poured scorn on all my most fervent beliefs - party poopers).

On the positive side we are all women. K had managed to convince himself that me being 'free' and out of the house for three days would go straight to my head and I would fall into bed with the first man who smiled at me. This is quite a back handed compliment because whilst it assumes I am so ridiculously attractive that men naturally fall at my feet, it also assumes I am a whore which doesn't sound as flattering. For the record not one man has smiled at me so I think we're quite safe.  Plus the food is actually really good - obviously being a raving food snob I had assumed the conference hotel on a business park on the outskirts of Bristol would have revolting food but I have been very pleasantly surprised - so I am far too full for any funny business. Actually, now I sit here in my comfy pyjamas after three courses of which one was a cheesecake (only ate half through embarrassment) I am wondering if the amount of food we were offered was part of a Biggest Loser style test and at the end of the three days they will announce the winner? Perhaps I shouldn't have had the cheesecake - there was also fruit salad as an option. That should have been a clue. I really don't think I am cut out for this. I had a KFC on the drive down.  There were mitigating circumstances though - it was 9pm and I was starving. And I had a twister not a bucket. There are limits.

Sweet low fat dreams peeps - until tomorrow! xxxxx

Tuesday, 12 April 2011

En Vacances

Bonjour! Motherandother is on location in IP33 for the Easter Holidays. This will make no difference to you at all as there is no webcam for a visual, but I am writing today at the comfort of my sister's dedicated desk and a 'gasp' keyboard with a view into the garden. No laptop on lap for me today. Hoorah! The country really is all its cracked up to be.

The sun in sunny Suffolk is helping to give our stay a more 'holiday' feel which is jolly. We are far too poor for a real holiday so this is as good as it gets. To be honest I find it hard to think of a better free holiday. Mother does a good job being maid, cook and resort entertainment (she is actually far better than the manny but she does has 40 yrs more experience to be fair) and she also has the added advantage of a massive two acre garden (no pool which would help her star rating but she won't be told). Ted has even given up trying to run away which is his new favourite game when we are anywhere outside, because every time he tries, he ends up in yet another part of the garden and not somewhere dangerous or life threatening (car parks, roads, etc). He tried valiantly for most of Sunday afternoon but I failed to look alarmed or run after him screaming his name so there was no fun to be had and he quickly gave up. He has now settled for Bea pushing him around the garden in his buggy picking flowers for hours on end. As Lynette Scarvo said on Desperate Housewives - children having children, gross, but children raising children, Genius.

The greatest thing about being here is the childcare facilities, not just at mother's hotel but also my sister's house which comes equipped with her slightly older children who provide an excellent level of care. This leaves me free to get a multitude of things done. George now has summer shoes (thank God as I couldn't bear to see the dinosaur trainers, multicoloured socks and shorts look again) and trying to sort out Bea's iron prescription (now given up and going back to docs). This has meant I have spent a long time waiting in pharmacys and have become quite obsessed with hayfever tablets. Not only do I suffer from hayfever, so am always on the look out for a product that will totally annihilate all symptoms and leave me as the person I was before Spring sprang, but also I am obsessed with why they produce specific non-drowsy medicine. I would like to bet that no one has gone in to a chemist and specified that they would dearly like to purchase some hayfever tablets which make it impossible for them to get through a normal day without suffering from mild narcolepsy.  Why is ALL hayfever medicine not produced as non-drowsy unless you specifically want night time hayfever tablets? It is a total mystery and one I thought I would share - perhaps someone with medical knowledge could point out the glaringly obvious to me. (As an aside to this, might I also point out to anyone with a child named George that buying them clothing and shoes from Asda means that they come ready named. G was fabuloulsy impressed with his new shoes with George printed on the inner sole and I was slapping my arse all the way home as per the advert.)

The only negative to Hotel Chez Mum is the plentiful food and the lack of any technological advances (Sky, wireless or cabled broadband, more than one phone or cordless phone). I am forced to watch repeats of Poirot, Countrywide or some other dire drivel. Thank goodness for my knitting.  It is incredibly difficult to not feel like you are holed away in a remote somewhere far, far away from the real world. This has resulted in me becoming the worst advocate for Weight Watchers ever (food consumed on holiday obviously doesn't count - another well known dieting fact), I am almost ashamed to go to training on Friday. I am convinced I will be the fattest trainee leader there. No support pants in the land are going to hide the remaining stone I need to lose.

I have to go now as being harrassed by two little boys for the Gummy Bear song on youtube. It is by far the most annoying tune ever and will remain in my head all day if not all year, but Ted is obsessed and his dancing is cute enough to get me through the three minute ordeal.  Never one to miss a learning opportunity though, I am now making them listen to the Spanish version No Soy Tu Gummy Bear - all top parenting tips free of charge. You're very welcome. 

Adios! xx

Saturday, 9 April 2011

A week in the life

Tadaaaaaaaahhhhhhhh! I'm back. I can only imagine your excitement. So, I survived the four nights out but miserably our laptop did not. Not because it accompanied me on any of the nights out but because I left it alone with K who hasn't quite got to grips with the idea of 'spam' . Upon seeing an email from his uncle in the dedicated spam file he decided to open the unnamed attachment in said empty email and shockingly, it turned out not to be from his uncle but a nasty spam email with a virus attached. GENIUS. So, we are a laptop down until and if (big if) our lovely friend can fix it. I knew you wouldn't be able to last without all the latest excitement from SE23 so I cunningly borrowed this netbook from our nice neighbour et voila! I'm here. I'm finding the small keys very hard to use though (net books are TINY) so it's taking a jolly long time. Bear with.

So, where shall I begin. Monday. Boring. Tuesday - Anniversary. It rained. It has never rained on our anniversary and it upset me. I mean there may have been the odd spot once a few years ago but honestly, the 5th April is usually sunny. Our wedding was beautifully hot and sunny, unseasonably so, and every year since has been amazing too - a 'sign' if you will - that we are on course. I take a lot of notice of the weather and what 'sign' it might be showing me - in fact I am quite convinced that the weather on your wedding day is a reflection of the bride's virtue and whether the union is a good one. (PLEASE NOTE the Rooneys went to Italy in the summer to marry and it rained - there is some method to my madness). Obviously I only told anyone of my suspicions after I got married and my virtue and union had been assured by the weather.  Anyhoo, the rain on Tuesday threw me and I couldn't relax for fear of something bad happening so, coupled with our severe money shortage we decided to rethink our venue choice and relocated our celebratory meal to one of the two Italian restaurants Honor Oak has to offer.  Much safer. Although I was ridiculously overdressed for the last minute change, wearing as I was a particularly revealing and 'dressy' dress which must have looked distinctly silly to the other patrons who were happily relaxed in their jeans and polo shirts. Still, better to be a big fish in a small pond than the other way round.

Wednesday. Hungover. Ouch. Went to Wibblies in the morning and had finally shifted the two pounds needed to get me to 60 pounds lost and more crucially to my training weekend. Now only 14 pounds to go to goal. Yipppeee!! The evening heralded the third night out in a row and a very delicious meal at a pregnant friend's in Shepherd's Bush, which required a long drive north during which I encountered many an annoying Chelsea fan. Two nearly died as a result of their jay walking. Idiots.

Thursday. Took Bea back to the consultant's 'up town' and had a fabulously successful morning. At first I was thrown by the Oxford St Disney Store being closed down - clasping as Bea was, the ten pounds given to her by her godmother, intent on purchasing the Hannah Montana lunch bag I failed to buy her last time - however I rallied quickly and introduced her to Selfridges. She LOVED it. It was a whistle stop tour as we only had half an hour before our appointment but it was enough for her to get the idea of the place - she was very impressed and I like to think that even some of the hardened perfume sales assistants melted at her skipping along joyfully just happy to see their displays. As we left she gave Selfridges the ultimate seal of approval by proclaiming it to be 'even better than the Big Shop'. The big shop being Sainsbury's, her only other retail point of reference. We had to rename it after a particularly upsetting incident many years ago when Bea had managed to confuse the word Sainsbury's and Cinema. I did think her and her brother were unusually excited as we got into the car for the weekly shop, but I put it down to childhood exuberance. The scene began as we turned into the car park and it lasted a ridiculously long time with both of them expressing their deep displeasure at my stupidity. My protestations that Sainsbury's did indeed still have popcorn did little to placate the crying. So, from that moment forth it was named the Big Shop to avoid any future confusion.

Appointment quickly out of the way (the hair is beginning to grow back which is a good sign but she mysteriously has very low iron levels) we moved onto Covent Garden and the open Disney Store where we purchased said lunch box then watched an entertainer, nipped into my friend's gallery, grabbed a kid's meal from McDonald's and still managed to get her back in time for her afternoon's lessons. It is very rare for me to do so much in one morning. Luckily the manny was at home so I was able to nurse my hideous cold (so unfair to get one just as the sun comes out) before having to rush out that evening for more stupid Weight Watchers training. I was 'meeting' and 'greeting' new members for a woman who wore solid blue eyeshadow and inch long fluorescent pink nails. Fun, fun, fun.

I'm beginning to re-think the genius of all this training. It's starting to be a real inconvenience and all I really wanted was the free weekend away at the hotel and spa. Although now it's nearly here (this time next week I'll be sitting on my own in a hotel room; most probably moaning into my mobile phone) I am having serious doubts about going. I cannot imagine abandoning all the children for three nights and taking off for Bristol. It is all too much and making me feel quite sick. Plus I will have to be nice and smiley to the strangers I am holed up with for three solid days. I am not sure I can keep up the facade for that long. A few hours is my record.

Tomorrow morning sees the official start of the Easter holidays as the children and I leave for the peace and tranquility of the Suffolk countryside with a staycation chez Grandma. I have no idea what on earth I shall do for internet access once we're there though as my mother is adamant that she will never have broadband at her sacred home lest the filth available on the web flow through the wires and fly out to sully her home. I shall have to escape to my sister's when I can, although I have to fight her four children for a slot on their shared computer, but I shall do my very best.  Right I must go - K requires some attention as he is acting as if he is not looking forward to us leaving him alone for five days and that he will in fact miss us all terribly. (I should imagine that by the time he has his first beer and long nap on the sofa in a quiet house the feeling of loss will quickly dissipate so I'm not being particularly sympathetic).

Seeya laters alligators xxxxxxxxxxxxx

Sunday, 3 April 2011

Obviously Mother's Day

So hello and bienvenue to Mother's Day 2011. I have had all the usual treats - lie in, breakfast in bed, home made cards etc and now I am totally alone in a very quiet house with only the delectable and uplifting sounds of Glee to keep me company. My present is a whole afternoon to myself - best gift ever. The last time I had an afternoon to myself I spent five hours filing all the paperwork from the last 10 years. It was exhausting.

When describing a particularly fabulous time she was having, the great Marge Simpson once said 'it was like the first five minutes of mother's day'. Essentially that is the the best bit - the cards in bed, the children being over excited, food and a small gift if you're lucky. K always has high hopes for the children's involvement in whatever plan he has but it never works out and he usually gets terribly exasperated and I end up suggesting he spends five minutes outside 'checking on the plants'. (Even the children have worked out that means having a fag but we still persist in the ruse). Today all three stuck a spanner in his works - Bea was too over excited about the cards and was forcefully thrusting them under my nose, George kept dive bombing the bed and Ted wanted to eat my parma ham and pulled the bow of the gift box - it was just all too much for K's need to please. But by the time he left for Essex and his mother, he had rallied sufficiently and they all seemed in good spirits. Although after they left I realised this was the perfect prelude to a Casualty style drama - 'mother waves off three adorable faces all strapped into the back of a people carrier on mother's day whilst harassed and tired father drives off. Mother closes door and smiles at all the cards in front of her when the camera cuts to a car and the screech of breaks and children's screams....' - you can see it too I know you can. I think it must be the guilt of it all - that I asked for time away from my children as a present on mother's day and that I am so deliriously happy as a result. I haven't even made an effort to see my own mother (who always tells us every year that the best gift we could give her is staying away). God damn - I've just realised what I've written - I thought I had more time before I became her. It's just happening too fast now.

In all the over excitement and drama this morning Bea read me the wording inside her card and as I didn't have my lenses in, I didn't query it, but as I was proudly putting them out (for the Casualty scene) I've just opened it and realised she has actually written 'Fack you for loveing me'. I know that she wasn't attempting to write fuck - although she did try it out in a sentence the other day thanks to her father's over use of the word in the morning (she also pointed out you could used it with 'ed' on the end before the word 'off') - but instead must have had a temporary lapse in concentration, but forever more I shall remember the year I got a card from my six year old that said fuck you for loving me. My friend's young son wrote inside her card - To Julie, thank you, from Ben. I think together they could start a whole new revolution in mother's day cards and indeed any card where one is meant to profess sickly sentiments as a matter of course. I would definitely love more cards like this. When trying to get my mum her card I was affronted by all the 'best mum in the world' cards and 'mum, my best friend, my rock' etc etc which I personally find totally horrideous (excellent word which I invented after a particularly ugly and obese bride on Four Weddings US). The fact is no mother is perfect, as I have previously discussed, so I hate all this sycophantic nonsense and would much rather some searingly honest sentiments. Next year I shall be bringing out my range of 'so so' cards. Mother - you can be incredibly difficult to love, but I do anyway. Mother - you are not the best but I am thankful you are not the worst either. Mum - we all have faults so I'll live with yours if you stop pointing out all of mine etc etc. I am on fire with entrepreneurial wizardry these days.

I would also like the 'so, so' range for Valentine's and Anniversary cards. K and I are celebrating eight years of weddedness on Tuesday and although I have managed to create a humorous one on Moonpig, it would be much easier if you could go down to your local shop and get a 'thanks for staying married to me, I know I can be a bitch sometimes' or 'on the whole I love you' card (I did actually make the last one for him once - it didn't go down well though so don't try it at home.) Eight long years. Not 'long' because being married to K is particularly difficult but because eight years is quite a long time and because a 'fack' of a lot has happened in that time. I was a child bride by today's standards - 24 years old. I think a lot of people must have assumed I was some devout born-again Christian which I am obviously not, (we toyed with going to church regularly a few years ago when we needed to be Catholics for school choices but it didn't work out so now we're back to being heathens) it was just that I was quite desperate to get on with having children and looking especially young in my wedding pictures and so I saw little point in waiting. (I am very grateful for that now as I can always take great comfort in the lack of lines on my wedding face especially after I am confronted with them in the mirror every morning) There have been many occasions during the last eight years that I have thought we should have waited a bit longer before tying the knot but mainly I am quite happy with our early nuptials. We have spent our 20s growing up together and although neither of us could be described as grown ups now we are in our 30s, we are definitely a lot further forward and most of it's been quite fun, all things considered.  We've certainly experienced a lot - life, death, poverty, wealth, poverty, house moving, house renovation, poverty, a rather full on recession, redundancy and a bit more poverty - we only have to rack up serious illness and I think we have a full house (pneumonia was not life threatening enough to qualify). I also had in mind, and I've told K this too so it won't be a big shock, that if you marry nice and young it means that you can still look good in the pictures for your second wedding. One always has to think of the future.

I seem to make a lot of excuses but just to let you know that I can't take the idea of wasting precious alone time so whilst watching Glee and writing this I am also stopping to hoover during the ad breaks so this post might seem a little rushed and disjointed. I feel the need to make the most of my 'gift' whilst also trying to get enough rest and relaxation to prepare for the week ahead. This week will be especially tiring as I shall now be out of the house for four nights in a row - what with helping out at Wibblies on Monday, my anniversary on Tuesday, a school friends get together on Wednesday and my first wibblies assessment on Thursday it has all got quite out of hand. This is literally the first time it has happened in perhaps a decade. I am scared - particularly as they all require me to leave the safety of SE23. This is totally uncharted territory people. I may not make it to Friday. I shall go now and conserve my energy. I also have at least three more episodes of Glee as well as Brothers and Sisters to cram in and I'm finding it difficult to concentrate on everything at the same time. The pressure of it all.

In the Ukraine they don't have mother's day, they have Women's day which I think is far better. So today I shall leave you with a big 'Fack You' to women everywhere - we are all worth a celebratory day whether we have contributed to the overpopulation of the world or not. Enjoy! xxx 

Friday, 1 April 2011

Weighty issues

BB - £-13.46
GM - £4.80
WW - 33
EAH - 0

Terrible week at wibblies. Managed to stay the same. Combined with my poor performance for the previous two weeks, I am now only half way to the half stone target I needed to reach before the Leader training weekend and am left with only two more weigh in opportunities in which to shift it. This means I have to be excessively good at tracking my points all week and even (gasp) exercise. In this vain K has kindly dug out the Wii fit for me. We've had it since Christmas but up until now it has remained safely in the box. At first I thought it was jolly good fun, that is until my new exciting low weight (relative for me obviously) was highlighted as being obese by their ridiculous BMI scale and then to make matters worse the mini-me on the screen ballooned before my eyes to illustrate the point. HOW RUDE. I did enjoy it telling me my wii fit age was 28 though - a full 4 years younger than my real life age. I was quite high about that until I started the training section of the game and they did a more thorough investigation of my fitness and revealed I was actually 38 in fitness terms. To be fair to Wii fit it's not like i've ever taken any regular exercise and to that end I'm quite amazed my body has any fitness level at all.  I have never, ever enjoyed exercise; even in primary school I got mum to write a note to get me excused from doing plie in the ballet class - whilst everyone else was bending their knees compliantly, I was allowed to sit on the chair and watch as I had convinced my mum that it hurt my knees too much. Anyway, I have officially entered my target weight with my virtual trainer now so I have pressure to lose weight in both worlds. Wish me luck.

It has been a productive week in other respects though, both boys have been whisked to the doctors to get jabbed and up to date and I've even been to get my three yearly 'lady' check. I can't give you any more details as K is particularly sensitive to anything regarding the female reproductive system. I am still not allowed to use the word 'period' or even vaguely reference its presence. Even when pregnant I had to use euphemisms for the parts of my internal organs affected. He was particularly insistent on me using the birth pool for the birth of Ted (no. 3) and having had one for George (no. 2) I knew exactly how much of a faff it was to set up, fill up and empty (both born at home so no helpful hospital staff ) so I was particularly surprised by his enthusiasm for me to benefit from its pain relieving qualities. That is until his insistence started to get annoying and it finally dawned on me that it was in fact because it was easier to stay the 'head end' during the labour with no involvement at the 'business end' being required and with the added benefit that the baby came out clean. Clearly I won in the end and Ted was born by the side of our bed without any water being involved . K remained the 'head end' you will be relieved to know.

I am too hungry and tired to write more. Only four more days to weigh in. Bugger.

Eat on my behalf please.