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Archive for December, 2007

The Case of The Disappearing Shoes

Monday, December 31st, 2007

Black ShoesIt was August, almost time for the school holidays to end.  There was a flurry of activity in the shops with people buying school uniform at the last minute.

This particular family were no exception.  With the eldest children already kitted out it was just left to buy the youngest a pair of school shoes ready for nursery.

Her grandmother asked for the honour of buying her first pair of school shoes, which was happily accepted.

Lovely patent black shoes with a small pattern on the front, they delighted the child.

"Can I wear them round the house" she asked her mother.  Thinking it would be a good idea to wear them in a little she agreed. She remembered seeing her daughter in them in the box room and reminding her to ‘be careful’ to keep them neat for school.

The day arrived for nursery.  Dressed in her smart uniform her mother looked for the shoes which she was certain were in the shoe cupboard.

They were not there.  She frantically searched the house ripping through each room.  Knowing her daughter would be upset she started to panic.  "Where could they be?".

Sadly time ran out and her daughter, though upset, was resigned to wearing a pair of old shoes for school.  Although still neat in appearance it took the shine off the first day.

Despite re-searching the house and asking everyone if they’d seen the shoes, there was no positive response and a new cheap replacement pair had to be bought.

Until 4 months later in December.  They turned up in the most unexpected place.

Where do you think this was?  Answer in the New Year.


That’s All Folks

Friday, December 28th, 2007

Well another Christmas Day is over and as I survey the debris left in it’s wake I ask myself is it all worth it. 

Well, yes of course it is just for the sheer magic of it and it really is a time for the children to enjoy.

On Christmas Eve Santa always adds extra decorations around the house and leaves a small present for the children to open on their beds with their main presents in piles in the living room.  Each set of presents is wrapped in it’s own special paper.

This year after noticing Santa had left the small present on the beds I went in and re-arranged them fearing they would fall off.  I decided to tuck them in behind their pillows where they would stay until morning.

The first present was easy as the pillow was away from the head board.  The second present was more difficult as the pillow was squashed up, so I had to wriggle it away from the head board, moving child no 2 slightly in the process.  I stopped in case I had inadvertently woken them.  No, so far so good.

I then went to turn round, tripped over a toy, fell backwards and banged against the next bed, hurting my back on the wood edging the bed in the process!

I made so much noise I just lay in the dark for a few seconds for fear of them all waking.  Child no 3 murmured and shifted in the bed but luckily I didn’t wake any one.

I then sneaked out of the bedroom to continue preparations for morning.

Hubby and I always stay up late on Christmas Eve and by the time we had finished it was 1.00 am.  At 2.00 am the children had woken up!  NOooooooooo.  "Can we open the presents?" was how I was woken up from my deep sleep.  I managed to get them to go back to bed for a bit longer.

Part of me was going to let them as they were so excited, but then it would all have been over.  So, eventually at 6.00 am I let them open them.  In between this time they had stayed awake and nearly every hour my one son kept asking if ‘it was time yet?’

Still, it’s what makes Christmas isn’t it?



A Very Merry Christmas

Tuesday, December 25th, 2007

Happy Christmas to you all.

Have a great one.

A Dangerous Game

Sunday, December 23rd, 2007

I would say I have quite a competitive streak.  I try to keep it at bay but sometimes it just comes out. 

My son and I have an ongoing game of tag which we fire up every now and then.  You know, you run up, touch them, shout tag and then run off before they can tag you back.  I’m pretty fast (for my age) and it really annoys him that I can always tag so quickly.

Okay, the mummy gene does kick in occasionally and I let him get near me, but it’s so damn hard. :-)

I’d got the naughty in me the other night so I walked up to my son in the living room and tagged him.  He immediately ran after me into the kitchen and tagged me back.  As I was preparing the tea at the same time, he got me.

I then ran to catch him and to steady myself around the corner of the door I grabbed on to the door frame.  My wedding ring caught on the metal part of the door (about half way down, the bit that the door handle fits into) and as I was running quite fast, it cut into my hand.

Swollen Finger

Thankfully my numskulls were working well that night and my first thought was to remove both my engagement ring and wedding ring.

This picture is ‘after’ I had packed it with ice for about 20 minutes, but you can see the swelling.  I was so lucky I didn’t break my finger or cut it worse.

The other difficult thing was not swearing in front of the children.  They could see I was in pain as I was holding my arm across my stomach.

"Are you okay mom?" my son asked.  In a slightly higher pitch than normal I managed to mutter "I’ll be fine".  My husband had just walked in the house and in the same high pitch I calmly requested, through gritted teeth "please would you get me some ice".

Bent RingMy ring ended up tear drop shaped with a sharp piece sticking out and because of how it had bent I couldn’t wear it.

Thankfully my local jeweller re-shaped it for free!!  But, as my finger is still a litlle tender I’ve had to wear both rings on my right hand.

I can’t believe how weird it feels, especially having been used to wearing it for nearly 15 years.

So maybe there’s a little lesson to be learned here.  Don’t be so competitive, choose your games wisely and oh yes, let your son win, it’s not as painful!

Things Not to Say to Your Husband No 175

Wednesday, December 19th, 2007

Sometimes I wish my brain would engage a little bit quicker before my mouth.  In all innocence over the years I have come out with some crackers and never meant to be hurtful, it just . . . well . . . . came out!

Today I was talking with hubby about how despite our ups and downs over the last few years how we have been successfully married for nearly 15 years.  Okay, there’s one.  I should have said ‘happily married’, so you can see what I mean.

I had noted that we seemed to be in a declining number of couples who are still together when we know plenty of people who have separated, divorced, remarried etc.  Things happen for a reason I know, so we do count our blessings.

I then said "I wouldn’t have an affair" and proceeded to add "a) because I’m too tired and couldn’t be bothered".

My husband stood there, looked at me and started laughing.

"I don’t think that reason should be the first one" he said. 

I joined in with the laughing realising that I should have said "because I love you very much as point a)".  Thankfully he realised that was implied (well after a bit of grovelling he did).

Still, keep them on their toes I say. :-)

It’s Amazing What You Can Find at Woolworths.

Tuesday, December 18th, 2007

Well today was our first day of Christmas shopping.  I would like to say that we always leave it this late because it suits us and the shops are generally quieter.

However I am not a good liar and today was the actually the first day we could go.  Hubby and I managed to achieve a 90% success rate which we are pleased about.

It proved to be a fun day and the shops weren’t that busy considering it is the final week. 

I won’t bore you with the finer details but Christmas shopping can make you so indecisive.  Umming and ahhing in one shop, deciding if to buy here or try another store in case it’s cheaper.  On the whole we feel we came in on budget okay and managed to be fairly decisive.

We had to re-visit our local Woolworths on the way back home and whilst walking round spotted something that I don’t normally see.

There was a man shopping and I instinctively knew his face.  I even knew he was out of a famous group but I could not put a name to the face.  I could have gone up to him and asked but thought it might be a bit rude to ask "I know your face, but who are you?".

My husband didn’t know either.  In fact I think he thought I was just going mad (again) but when I got home I started searching Google for 1970’s bands.  After a few minutes, the dim light in my brain started getting brighter and I had a ‘lightbulb’ moment.  ELO. 

The chap I had seen had been in Electric Light Orchestra and it was none other than Bev Bevan!  He’s also been in The Move and Black Sabbath amongst other groups.  I hadn’t realised that Olivia Newton John had recorded Xanadu with ELO.  She is the original Kylie!

If you check out this song Confusion on You Tube you’ll see him drumming in the background.  I’d forgotten about some of the really great songs they made like Don’t Bring Me Down, Mr Blue Sky, Hold on Tight, Midnight Blue,Ticket to The Moon and Twilight.

I’ve just spent a wonderful nostalgic half an hour visiting You Tube to track down their songs. I think there should be a revival!

I am so glad I didn’t insult him by asking who he was and Mr Bevan if you ever read this post (hmmm!) I apologise for subtly staring. 

I am good with faces but not so good with names.  But at least if I see him again I can actually congratulate him on the fantastic music they produced. 

X Fiasco

Sunday, December 16th, 2007

Well Leon won the X Factor.  I am so surprised, but as my husband pointed out, by last night it wasn’t about talent it was about favouritism.

The songs were going well until they were joined by the ’stars’.  It just didn’t have the same magic as last year when Westlife and Take That joined the show.

Jason Donovan (great to see him back) slightly overpowered Same Difference, Katherine Jenkins definitely overpowered Rhydian and what was up with Kylie in that outfit?  She looked remarkably wrinkle free too.

Rhydian would have sounded fantastic with Westlife and I must admit was disappointed when Katherine came out to sing with him.

I also thought the judges did not promote Rhydian as they usually had.  I might be wrong but it seemed like they wanted Leon to win.  Maybe this was to give him something to leave the show with, whereas Rhydian should have a massive career from joining the X Factor.

It seemed like it was prearranged.  And by the way did anyone else have trouble getting through to Rhydian’s vote line?

The Child Within

Thursday, December 13th, 2007

I’m in my forties, have held down a management job, have three children and yet I still can’t escape certain childish behaviour.

I keep asking myself when am I going to grow up?  Am I alone in this?  (please don’t all say yes).

I went to Sainsburys today to pick up some final food for two children’s events I am holding tomorrow night.  Due to all the rushing around I’ve been doing lately, I haven’t had time to invite any of the children’s friends over.

To put this right and because tomorrow is the only Friday I now have free for the time being, I have let my youngest son invite about 6 friends round for a Christmas Tea Party between 4.30 pm and 6.30 pm.  And at 7.30 pm my eldest son is having 3 friends round for a sleepover. 

I must be mad, but everyone is happy and we’ve prepared games and events for the night.

So, back to Sainsburys.  I went down the soft drinks aisle and stopped by the part I wanted.  My daughter was helping me scan the items when I heard a woman near us say to her husband "mind the baby behind", meaning us.

His reply was something along the lines of "they shouldn’t have stopped so close to us" which I thought was a bit rude and I know he was hoping we’d hear it. 

I should have ignored it, but I did the same as him and in a slightly louder voice than normal (as I walked away) said "well you shouldn’t have stood in the middle of the aisle then should you?".  I should have pulled my tongue out as well and wiggled my hands about at my ears just to add to the childishness behaviour of mine.

And if that wasn’t enough I spotted someone in the store that I didn’t want to talk to (you may remember the posting about the ‘friend’ who wants me to get in touch). 

Quick update - she collared me one day, gave me a big hug along with her mobile phone number, expecting me to give her mine.  I haven’t made the call, because I’ve simply had too much going on and like I said before am not in the right place to re-friend at the moment.

I walked towards the end of the aisle and saw her virtually in front of me.  She hadn’t spotted me, so I ran round the back of her with my trolley and hid down the next aisle!!!!

Why couldn’t I approach her and apologise for not phoning and explain why?  I just didn’t want to get into a conversation, but at my age you’d think I could handle a simple task like that.  And because I’d done that, I was then on alert round the rest of the store, peeping round aisles before going down them.

I marvel at my own stupidity sometimes, but I’m the sort of person who doesn’t like letting anyone down or making others feel bad.  You could label me a doormat I suppose and to be honest I feel like I did enough of that with this ‘friend’. 

The only way I can deal with things like this sometimes is to just walk away because then I don’t have to interact.  It works for me. 

But my sister would probably say "build a bridge and get over it!".

Orange Carpet and Furry Smackers!

Tuesday, December 11th, 2007

Sometimes I think my mind lives somewhere else or at the very least takes day trips occasionally. 

Or as I’ve mentioned before the numskulls have been in action.

With the coughs and colds still not subsiding in our household I decided to buy some fresh tonic for us and the children.  A favourite of ours is the Minadex orange flavoured tonic.  

I did have some in the house, but it tends to go off quite quickly if you don’t follow the storage instructions, namely, in a cool place out of direct sunlight.  So the bathroom shelf by the window is not really the best place for it or the cupboard in the kitchen that the kettle is directly under. 

Okay lesson learnt.

So I bought the bottle from a localish chemist, got home and promptly dropped the bag with the tonic in onto our driveway. 

My mind told me to just pick it up, don’t bother checking if it’s in a glass or plastic bottle (which I really should know by now) and put it in the hall with the coats you’ve just carried in.  Then my mind says "leave it for 15 minutes before thinking about it again".

So I did. 

I called my son to have a spoonful, picked it up and guess what, it is in a glass bottle, which had smashed to pieces leaking all over the hall carpet.  Not only that my mind said "don’t worry, pick it up, even though it’s dripping and take it in the kitchen".  So I did and left a trail all through the house and over my kitchen floor, which I had only mopped yesterday!

My mind then chose to direct me to ‘take a look’ at the bottle because it might be salvagable (is that even a proper word?).  Nooooo.  I think not!

I had to go back to the chemist and buy some more and at nearly £5 a bottle, it’s turned out to be an expensive tonic.  We’d better be jumping with fitness at the weekend.

Oh yes and the furry smackers? 

My next door neighbour has a cat who always comes to greet me when I come out of the house, get out of the car or basically any time he sees me.  I think most of the time he is cold and just looking for some affection.

I decided to tidy up the front of our house yesterday as there were parts of a newspaper floating around along with a collection of leaves.  My neighbours drive is slightly higher than ours so when I’m sweeping I push it against her wall to help me pick it all up.

Her cat came over for a bit of fuss, so I stopped what I was doing and using both hands stroked the cat along it’s back.  It started purring with contentment.

I then stopped, bent down to pick up the leaves by the wall and at that point I was face to face with the cat.  All of a sudden out of nowhere this paw smacked me across my face!

I was a little stunned, although he didn’t use his claws and when I looked up the expression on the cat’s face was really strange.  It was a mixture of "ooh sorry, I didn’t mean to do that" coupled with "why have you stopped stroking me and carry on".

I think he was just very cold even though he is able to shelter, so when I stroked him again, he softened and purred even louder.

Being the softie I am, I forgave him . . . . this time!

Love Actually

Sunday, December 9th, 2007

Tonight was the night for a sloppy film whilst doing the ironing.  I love all the usual romantic British comedies and tonight was the turn for Love Actually.

I’ve got it on video which isn’t the best medium as our video player doesn’t always play nicely, but it’s just what I needed tonight.

I set up the ironing board and duly started on the pile.  It will actually take me about 10 romantic comedy films to get through the pile but thankfully in my hoard I have Notting Hill, Bridget Jones and You’ve Got Mail to start me off.

My husband came in to ask me if I’d like a cuppa and I duly told him, "yes, that would be lovely, but I’ve put a film on so I can have a good sob at it and would you mind not interrupting".  He smiled at me and then proceeded to watch some of it with me!

There are many things I love about the film, the scene in church when the newly weds turn around and the best man has organised the band and singers to perform ‘All You Need is Love’, the part when Hugh Grant dances to ‘Jump’ and I think Emma Thompson is just brilliant in her role especially when she realises her husband bought a necklace for someone else (a real tearjerker bit).

So I’ve had my fill of romance tonight, had my cuppa and did enough ironing to see us through tomorrow. 

The hard part is now deciding which film to have next in order to continue . . . . . oh decisions!

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