What’s on your “to do list”? Mine’s looking pretty interesting at the moment because my to do list is a special one – it’s focussed but not specific. It’s all come about because I had a really interesting conversation and debate with one of my clients last month. It started after I heard a quote from Michelle Obama:
Yes, that’s me. I’ve been writing for the Sunday Telegraph. So just in case you missed my article for the Sunday Telegraph supplement a couple of weeks ago, there’s now a link to it online. If I do say so myself, it’s rather funny, so feel free to go and have a look :))
<subtle, I know> ….
When was the last time you walked the walk of shame …?
I’ve done it again. I’ve sloped down the stairs wearing a pair of undies and a hooded top. I’ve got the little person playing games on my phone and I’ve been surfing the net. I’ve not cleaned my teeth. I’ve not unstacked the dishwasher. I’m not doing anything productive at all. It’s shameful. Though I have been filmed by the BBC this week, sounding relatively articulate and being strident on the child benefit debacle.
I should be bouncing out of bed, thrilled to see my twinkies after a busy week at work. But no, when my lovely 4 year old asked – or rather – grabbed me by both cheeks (of my face, I hasten to add) and said “What would you like for Christmas Mummy?”, I said “sleep, lots and lots of sleep”. That completely confused the poor soul who said “I don’t think I can buy that in Waitrose, but I could get you a pink power rangers girl story book”.
In my defence, he was in our bed by 1am, and Daddy had given up and moved on to another bed – I don’t know where, by 1.15am. He is a little wriggle bum. And just after 5am he woke me to starting discussing the intricacies of how advent calendars work and who it was that made the rule that you can only have your chocolate after your breakfast and that you have to find the numbers by yourself.
I held on, until 6.24am. We didn’t come downstairs until then. But still, it’s a walk of shame, because I’d much rather surf mumsnet and Facebook than do anything that’s productive and would help the house, our family, or even myself – shouldn’t I be doing some face mask, or preening myself to face the weekend ahead?
I can’t quite put my finger on it, but for some reason, it coming down the stairs this morning, the best explanation I can come up with is that it felt like a walk of shame … for me, as a mum.
Do you ever feel like this?
PS. It’s advent. Yippeeeeee
PPS. I would like a Liz Earle advent calendar. Only £110. How are you fixed?
PPPS. If you’d like to hold my hand via the medium of twitter, I’m @TheLizWeston
Blog. Bloggers. Blogging. What’s the issue with these words? Blogs rule. Fact. In case you missed it, yesterday was a bit special for this blog. It received thousands upon thousands of views in 24 hours – and all from a mention in the paper whose logo I’ve put up here… Thank you for coming to read my blog. It made Sunday very exciting! But now, I’m embarrassed. Because my personal blog is not all singing and dancing. It’s a free wordpress theme. It’s just me. Pootling along. So I have’t spent my time making this a fancy blog… In fact, it’s the polar opposite of my work life, where I do the all singing and dancing things for clients. But more important than my worries about my blog needing a makeover, there’s something more pressing for me to deal with – what do I write about next?
I promise that this is the last time I’m going to give her air time, but that Liz Jones piece was not just derogatory about me. And I don’t want anyone to think that I’m so self absorbed that I didn’t notice the other things she wrote. It was also negative about women and women who choose to stay at home or feel that part of their vocation, having had children, is to stay at home and be with them – she wasn’t just annoyed with mothers who blog, but women in general, for having babies and taking time to raise them. But that’s not the point of this particular post. I want to focus on something else…
For me it’s about her derision – and I do feel it was derision when she wrote that women who blog are:
“In their own world: More and more mothers are spending most of the day telling the world all about their home life…” and that we “ignore the child about to toddle into the glass wall that makes kitchen and garden seamlessly as one…”
Disclaimer: Just in case you weren’t aware, this is my personal blog. It’s not being written with SEO and all that in mind, so I get to write my titles exactly as I like to, like I have done today. It’s not how I’d write them if they were for work stuff….I don’t want you to think I’m not title aware ;)
Here are two best friends. They are also known as a Daddy and soon to be 4 year old son. Or Lovely Bloke and W. But there’s a problem looming. All too soon, they are going to be separated for hours at a time, when W starts big school, in September. He goes to pre school nearly every day, but that’s not the same in our minds. It’s optional, not obligatory. Lovely Bloke and W get to do stuff together, like going to Waitrose on a Friday morning, doing the shopping and having a milk and cake together in the cafe. I hear that it’s all very civilised, until W decides he’s bored of it and says “right, lets go”…
And even before big school happens, E 0r BIG E, as I’m referring to him, will be home from school for the summer. This will be great in itself – lots of adventures and opportunities for playing for all three of them. But right now, he’s at school 9am – 3pm ish and it means that lovely as E finishing school will be, it’s also going to mean that Lovely Bloke and W will have even less time together, for their pootling around, doing jobs, getting into trouble and having fun when they think no one is looking.
So right now they are on countdown, and I don’t think either of them have realised it yet. I don’t like how sad they will be when they do realise. So for now, I’ll treasure these photos of them sticking “bugs” on each other’s noses, boobs, bums and arms. Which ones do you think W did?
When we were gearing up for E going to big school, it was exciting, an adventure. Now it’s time for W to make the transition, I just want to cry. I’m sad. It’s the end of an era. I know it’s a good thing – we are raising two bright, enquiring, relatively polite, funny, good to be with boys who are thriving at school and pre school. We love the smug parenting moments when we are told about something good, kind or smart that they have done. But the other bit of me, just wants to snuggle under the duvet with them. They are growing so fast. Sometimes, I just want time to stand still.
Check me out – mother of the year alert. I have baked muffins with my boys this afternoon.
Here’s the kit before I started:
And here’s the final result – yes, they are star shaped pineapple, raisin, carrot and chocolate chip muffins :)
[ahem.bum.etc. can't get the image to load. will come back to this....]
But here’s what baking muffins actually means – going to John Lewis, purchasing silicone cake cakes in the shape of a star and some brightly coloured circle silicone cases. Doing all the prep for the baking muffins project myself. Weighing it all out myself. Putting it all together and then spooning it out under instruction from E and W. Then they contribute on a practical level – they put a chocolate chip on the top of each muffin. I then clean it all up whilst they go and play. And to add final insult to injury, W refuses to try one and E has one bite, rejects it and says “but I did have a go mummy and like you say, it’s good to try things, isn’t it?”
I figured that this would be a good thing to share on my blog, because I’m sure that there’s plenty of other mums out there who start with good intentions of doing lovely projects with their children that then turn into something that’s not quite the picturesque thing you’d thought of…
It’s not just me this happens to, is it?
Today is a day for Mummies. I’ve had quite a nice day really. Got to go back to bed, after getting up at 7am with littlest. But it was interspersed with littlest and biggest coming to show me the bookmarks they were making me for Mummy’s day. I think it was a *subtle* strategy on Lovely Bloke’s part… Anyway, whatever today has or hasn’t been, is what it is. It’s perfect. Because our boys are here. I’m going to the funeral of biggest’s friend tomorrow. He wasn’t even quite 5 years old yet. So it’s a big thing. He literally went to sleep one night and didn’t wake up the next day. I won’t go into it any more than that, as this is my blog, not E’s and although he’s only 5, I don’t think it’s fair somehow to write about this. Funny, as I’m happy to share pretty much anything else.
So today, even if you’ve had a box of chocolates where you can’t eat 8 of the 11 in them, like me, please try to appreciate your family and what you have. I don’t know any way to write it that’s not patronising, but wanted to put it out there. I’ll be finishing today with a couple of loads of washing, to help Lovely Bloke who is snowed under at the moment and getting an early night so I can be uber productive tomorrow morning….
So, at the start of this activity, I weighed 14 st 3lb. That’s the heaviest I’ve ever been in my life and it made me cry. I got down to 14st which was good then onto the Slimming World band wagon and by last Sunday, the 27 November, was 13st 8lb. Excellent me thinks, especially as it had just been the time of the month and I’d had a grotty week. I decided to absent mindedly weigh myself last night and I was 13st 12lb. That’s not possible surely, in less than 48 hours, to gain 4lb in weight?? !!! ?? Surely not. I was in the rudey nudey. It was the same place, but the end of the day instead of the start, but surely that can’t make 4lb of difference?
Anyway, I’m annoyed. And wanting to eat all sorts of stuff because I’m annoyed. But I’m not. So instead, I’m munching my way through grapes, diet coke and cherries. When all I want is chips and gravy. It’s a bit pants to be honest, so I’d stay out of my way, because when I’m deprived of my chips and gravy with a buttered barm, I’m a bird with a short fuse.
Here’s hoping for the weigh in on Sunday eh? Perhaps I’ll go running to see if it has an impact on it? Or maybe swimming?
Does your weight go up and down like this? How does it make you feel? What do you do?
Ha ha, I love the idea of “reviewing” my wedding anniversary. That’s comedy in itself. But anyway, I’ve had some tweets about it, so I figured it would be good to write about it and, I’ve actually got lots to photos to document it, which is nice…
Day started at 7am, which is a result in itself. I scurried into the other room with the boys and we wrote special cards for daddy to tell him how much we love him. They were given to him, along with my present – the piece de resistance – a packet of Super Hero Top Trumps. This is a top present in my mind and Lovely Bloke does his best to look pleased with it, as he always does, god love him.
Then he tells me to look inside the wardrobe for my small present. I’m there quickly and searching, searching, searching – I can’t find anything. He’s telling me to keep looking and lo and behold I find a small Mappin and Webb box. Wooooo hooooo!!!! In some ways, it could have been an empty bag. But I suppose it’s what it signifies, what’s within it. So I open it, with the “help” of E.
And inside, are a gorgeous pair of diamond earrings. E is trying to help me wrestle them out of the box, when Lovely Bloke starts to flap a bit.
“Errrr, E shall we let Mummy do that?” So that’s when I realised they were a) real and b) would need to be insured on their own!!
Within an hour the boys had gone to Nanny and Grandad for bacon and eggs for breakfast, to be followed with a day at the sea side and Prezzo’s for lunch, as that’s Nanna’s favourite place to go for a meal out…
We are then on the road, planning to go IKEA, to sort out the kitchen and what we are going to do with it. En route, I do some more calculations and we realise that for an extra bit of money we could have the Howdens kitchen that’s on special offer, including the fitted kit, so we detour off to the outlet shopping place near Braintree. I think it’s called Littleport, but am not sure…
Here’s a photo of me having put make up on in the car, trying to look all “sultry”…
And this is what I really look like:
So then we get to Littleport or Freeport or Whatever It Is Called and we wander around the shops. Have to say, I’m not overly thrilled with it. But I did find a Wonder Bra outlet shop where in hindsight, I should have had the bra that was 15.00 instead of 25.00 but hey ho, I’ve lived and learnt from that one. And I found some of my jeans, not quite in the right colour in the Levi’s shop. They were 55 instead of 85, which is quite good but if they aren’t “my colour” isn’t that a bit of a false economy?
What I did find however, was something which my dear friend, Dr AKT told me I would find. Skinny jeggings. In stonewash denim. And behold. I did. She mentioned it several times, so I can only assume that she was secretly requesting a pair for her birthday. Who am I to not oblige the desires of one of my two best friends? [For the file, my other best friend, KR, would shoot me if I got her a pair of these, so it's good to note how we all have different kinds of friends who make our worlds go around...]
And then it was on to Howdens, where we spent so much money that I had to phone the bank to tell them that a transaction of magnitude was going through! After a quick whip home for our swimmers, we visited a worktop place that does recycled glass. It’s gorgeous. And costs £3,000 for the worktop alone, not the MDF that goes under it!!! Here’s a photo for you. Does it look like a £3,000 worktop to you?
We didn’t get the price that day, so we skipped off to the Hotel Pool for a swim and sauna, thinking we should be able to afford it as it couldn’t be “that much” really, could it? After that it was Browns for dinner and here’s Lovely Bloke and I eating our puddings….
After that, we went to the cinema to see the inbetweeners movie. It was very busy and full of teenagers. We felt a bit old. But enjoyed it nonetheless. Then it was home, to bed and then a lie in together the next morning, before a couple of clients phoned me – and I told them I was “off” and managed to not work until my first client meeting at 1pm!
So all in all a good result all round really. Sorry this has been soooooo long, but I wanted do my couple time justice. It’s important to me that we got back to being a couple, even if only for 24 hours, only needing to check on what one other person wanted to do, not three and not having to reason in quite the same way with Lovely Bloke that I do with our tiddlers ;)
Will I do it again? Yes, without LittlePort, FreePort, whatever it is. And without the diamond earrings and the £3,000 worktop (did I mention the worktop???) Lovely Bloke, mooching about, swimming, dinner and movie is my idea of a good time. And I’m pleased to have worked that out. It’s a good feeling.
Now I’ve got to put my cape on and transform into Liz Weston, Baby PR, Marketing to Families and Social Media solutions provider for my day job. So I’ll see you later x