An unexpected lesson in beauty
A palliative care ward is the last place I expected to learn a lesson in beauty. Being a ward where people came to die, I expected lessons in love, lessons on the importance of family and on living a life well lived … but a lesson in beauty? Well, it seemed so irrelevant. Somehow banal. But sometimes you just have to take life lessons where they are offered to you and not ask too many questions.
Did anyone hear the Woman’s Hour report on PND recently? A staggering one in ten women experience Post Natal Depression. I was struck by how high the figure was, but as I did some research I discovered another rarely reported condition which affects an equal amount of women during pregnancy: Antenatal Depression. This struck a chord with me.
My pregnancy was neither fully planned, nor a complete mistake. I was nervous of course when I found out, but excited too. I was living in New Zealand with my Kiwi fiancée and although I had begun to make friends, I’d always felt lonely until my pregnancy test came back positive. I remember driving to tell my fiancée and feeling an incredible attachment and love for this being growing inside me.
But like all newly pregnant mums, love was tinged with fear. Things were very touch and go, I had cramps and was spotting lightly. My pregnancy hormone levels were low and my doctor, trying to protect me, warned that the likelihood of miscarriage was high. Determined not to loose my baby, I took things very slowly and, as I wasn’t working, I rested a lot.
You can suck my willy next time!’ said next door’s workman.
All I could think was that I didn’t need anything else to do and then he was gone before I could tell him to F*** off, so taken aback I was by his ‘invitation.’
He had been round for a cup of tea a few times, changed some kitchen light transformers for me, charged me fifty quid, thank you very much and taken to sending the odd text which wasn’t about when I was going to be in.
I was flattered, it has to be said. A husband who neglected me and regularly insulted me had knocked my confidence and in the absence of any other attention, a man much younger than me – not an ugly or fat or bald one – was becoming a bit fresh….
A Family Walk via Hipstagram
Photography is a hobby that I’d love to spend more time (and money!) on. At the moment, neither time or money are in abundance but I am having fun using various photography applications on my phone, and I thought I’d record our family walk from this weekend using my phone.
As part of our attempt to slow life down a bit – to cope with stress levels, and enjoy spending some great quality time together, we’ve started trying to book out the whole of Sunday to spend together, enjoying a variety of activities; arts and crafts, cooking, walking, gardening and spending some time outdoors.
So, here is my record of this weekend’s walk:
It’s that time of year again… Report card writing time.
While I don’t miss teaching *or* writing reports (I’m so glad I don’t have to write phrases such as, ‘must endeavour to do her best’ and ‘has made sound progress in…’ anymore) many of my teacher friends are pre-occupied and completely absorbed by theirs. I don’t blame them – it’s a stressful, all-consuming task!
Anyway, I started thinking about what Vinay’s report card might be like when he starts school. Will he get comments such as, ‘not reaching his full-potential’ or ‘is making wonderful progress’?
Let them eat cake…or just a boatload of Petits Filous?
A horrible situation arose at W’s nursery the other week, for which I was utterly unprepared. When dropping him off as normal I was suddenly, unexpectedly cornered approached by one of the nursery assistants and asked…
NA: So, how do you feel about his puddings?
Me: Um, sorry, whose what?
It was a fair question. He has been having his meals there once a week for a little while now but the subject just hadn’t come up before. To be honest it hadn’t really occurred to me because it is only recently that I have stopped sending home-made meals in for him to eat.
NA: W’s pudding. Do you want him to have any?
Now there is clearly a right answer to this question but for the life of me I don’t know what it is. I can feel the stares from all of the other assistants as it is taking me so long to answer. Do I have time to whip out my phone, Ask Jeeves maybe? Nope.
7 things you didn’t know about me…
I’ve been given a blogging award! How exciting!
But, hang on a minute, there’s a catch…
I need to tell you 7 things about myself that you didn’t already know….
1. My ‘weird crush’ is Hugh Laurie. Although, not so much Hugh himself, more his House character. He’d have to talk to me in an American accent the whole time and be generally obnoxious if we were going to get along.
2. My ‘not so weird crush’ is Howard Donald (prepare for teenage moment here… I’VE TOUCHED HIS HAND!!) Well, I like all of Take That to be honest, but especially Howard… I obviously have a thing for ‘scruffy’ men…. Which says a lot about my hubby!
I had never told anyone about my phobia before. I was embarrassed that I could be so afraid over such a stupid thing. Not even my mother knew! And when I mentioned it to my husband he thought I was just being silly. But the first time my oldest son was ill and he saw the colour drain from my face, he knew it was serious. He still didn’t understand it though. I think it is difficult to understand if you’ve never experienced anything like it yourself.
Reasons to be grateful
So, reasons to be grateful – well, thats a bit like the ‘Pollyanna game’ that I play every day.
Back in 2001 – after a catalogue of life changing experiences – I had a bit of a mental aberration.
After a brief dabble with antidepressants, which I hated, given that they took away the depressed feeling but left me floating around on a plateau of nothingness, I came across the film ‘Polyanna’ which I’d watched as a child…
A Day in the Life of a SAHM – in pictures r
The mission this week was to capture a day in a photo. The chosen day was Friday as it went by the rather special date: 11.11.11. I approached this with trepidation initially, as the day I had planned was full of busy nothings. Then I thought, actually that’s the point. To capture everyday life in all its mundane, everyday, run of the mill, ordinary, glory. To find beauty in the small moments we take for granted. To observe our life from the outside and see what makes it interesting.“`
Of course that’s all very well, but it makes it harder to know what to take a picture of. It’s easy to take photos on high days and holidays. I needed more of a focus, so decided to take a photo at eleven minutes past every hour.
Is your bedroom a sanctuary?
They say that your bedroom should be a Sanctuary. It should be a haven of tranquility reserved only for relaxation and romance. There should be no TV, no piles of clothes and no kid’s stuff. Is that even possible when you have kids?
I’m writing this in my bed with half an eye on an episode of Alphas on the TV in the corner. My bed is full of biscuit crumbs dropped by E. Long gone are the crisp white bedclothes in favour of cheap duvet covers that i don’t mind being covered in anything from vomit to jam. Propped on the end of the bed are the V pillow I use to keep T upright while I feed him his breakfast in the mornings and a handful of his toys that rustle and jingle and start playing their tunes when I turn over in my sleep.
Blogging to Help Others
It’s that grand old question, why do you blog? Is it for the freebies or a financial gain? Do you just enjoy expressing yourself or is it to help others?
Until last night I enjoyed just blogging out about how our life was with a few reviews and competitions thrown in for good measure, hoping people enjoyed reading. Then something changed.
I attended Kayleigh’s pre-school meeting last night for the first time and one thing that came up was the fundraising. Now the pre-school is a charity run so they rely on the parents to help fund raise and any donations they may get
How Importance Is Romance?
ROMANCE – A feeling of excitement and mystery associated with love
But how important is it?
If you’d have asked me that question a few weeks ago then I would have said not very important at all. I would have said that romance doesn’t mean anything and that it’s nice but the lack of it doesn’t mean that your OH loves you any less but following a conversation with one of my friends last week I started to wonder whether in actual fact, it does.
I had a call from my friend yesterday. She was rather out of sorts and requested a small chat before work. A month or so ago she met a gentleman at a party, they had been on number of most agreeable dates together and had recently seen the more intimate side of the relationship blossom. It was fair to say she was quietly confident in the knowledge that she had met a young man whom she found attractive, shared interests with and ‘had a third leg’ quote unquote.
Last week however the fledgling relationship took a turn for the worst. She waited for 3 days and then for another 4 until before she could say ‘Oh, bye then’ it was 2 weeks later and she had heard nothing from him. Not a phone call, a text, not so much as a tweet. Bugger all.
What’s Your Favourite Children’s Book?
What’s Your Favourite Children’s Book?
Today as we snuggled up on the sofa for a great PJ day we decided to plough our way through our substantial children’s book collection. We have read around 25 different books today but these are our favourites:
The Fearsome Beastie
Here is a short exert from the book
…..Please feel free to do your own post on this theme and link back to me, pop your link in the comments underneath so that we can all read each others and get some recommendations for new books to add to our lists…………
Children & Television
Over one third of British children now have a television in their bedroom, watching an average of 11.4 hours a week and seeing 18,000 advertisements each year (Cumberbatch, 2001) <<< in fact this has probably increased in the last 10 years.
two-thirds of infants and toddlers watch a screen an average of 2 hours a day
kids under age 6 watch an average of about 2 hours of screen media a day, primarily TV and videos or DVDs kids and teens 8 to 18 years spend nearly 4 hours a day in front of a TV screen and almost 2 additional hours on the computer (outside of schoolwork) and playing video games
Children form a vulnerable section of society and need to be protected from the unconscious messages that the media exposes them to. Social Learning Theory argues that children acquire and develop new, more complex forms of behaviour by observing the consequences in others or models (which can be realistic or comic). Whether the behaviour is imitated is largely determined by the consequences to the model performing the act. Bandura (1969, in Smith, 1994) considered that children may have greater exposure to televised models than their own parents’ behaviour.
Music as Therapy
We have been known to play the “If you could only. . .” game in the car on long journeys.
. . .If you could only read three books as long as you live. . .
. . .If you could only ever watch three films. . .
. . .If you could only listen to three albums for as long as you live. . .
And every time we play this game
I get really stressed and grumpy
and demand to have five instead of three.
And then when my husband relents
I pick seven anyway.
But I have chosen three songs.
Three songs which not only are beautiful
but come from three of my favourite bands
and have THE most beautiful lyrics too.
I do not see anything wrong
I’m not going to lie to you it’s 46 seconds of your life you will never get back – but it promise it will make you laugh 🙂