Friday, 27 September 2013

Happy Birthday

We're all going out for a meal this evening to celebrate my younger son's birthday. Actually he won't be 20 (TWENTY!) until next weekend, but I shall be away. Two jovial sons who enjoy cheeky banter, an oft-bewildered dad and, well, me. Sometimes I wonder if we're turning into the Friday Night Dinner family - 'cept we're not Jewish.

Celebrate the small things with me and the rest of the blog-hoppers via VikLit's Scribblings of an Aspiring Author blog, here.

Wednesday, 25 September 2013

Little Miss Busy

Yesterday was one of those days when I was what comedian Micky Flanagan would call 'double busy'. The result of this was that I finally came home just before 10pm, wolfed down a couple of slices of pizza and went to bed without giving myself time to wind down properly. Unsurprisingly, I couldn't sleep, so I got up and, having put the finishing touches to the general crossword in Saturday's paper, I switched on the TV for some mindless entertainment.

This is how I came to be watching Don't Tell The Bride at 3am. Good grief, what a strange world we live in where we can make a programme about a hapless man organising a wedding in secret from his betrothed. Will she hate it? Will he stick to the budget? Do we care? It was awful and yet awesome. It did the trick, though, and I was able to nod off when I went back to bed.

When my eyes reluctantly opened this morning, it took me a while to realise that the numbers displayed on my clock-radio were not the Radio 4 frequency, 94.5 FM, but the time: quarter to ten. Now I'm spending the whole day playing catch-up. Double busy, again.

Sunday, 22 September 2013

Catching the last rays

The first of many
As I was sitting in the garden this morning I caught the eye of my new neighbour looking out of her bedroom window. We haven't met yet, but I gave her what I hoped was a cheery wave. I remembered just a few seconds too late that brandishing a knife at a stranger while wearing swimming goggles and latex gloves might be rather disconcerting for her - unless she could see that I was peeling onions ready for pickling.

Yes, my green-fingered husband continues to bring tonnes of crops home from the allotment for me to process, pickle and otherwise preserve. We are just about coming to the end of the tomatoes-with-everything season and are entering the realms of 'what are we having with the squash this evening?'

Don't look back!
So I'm taking advantage of the glorious September sun to peel a few things, with my back to the unweeded border. Looking at the flowerbed that has recently been treated to a tidy-up, I'm pleased to see that the self-set sweetpeas are still flowering. I've had free blooms for weeks. 

My neighbours have recently culled the rampant ivy that is threatening to overwhelm their garden and had started to invade ours, too. The trouble is that now they have cleared the fence panels, it has become clear that in places it was only this tenacious creeper that was holding them up . Husband is resolved to fix things; he has just announced his intention to fetch 'some screws and a hammer'. Interesting combination. Should I be worried, do you think?

Friday, 20 September 2013

All change: here comes an equinox

Celebrate the small things with me and the rest of the blog-hoppers via VikLit's Scribblings of an Aspiring Author blog, here.

Let's celebrate the changing seasons. We might be sad to see the summer go, but who doesn't love a walk in the bright autumn sun with the leaves crunching underfoot and the smell of a bonfire in the air? (Cue Jusin Hayward: 'Through autumn's golden gown we used to kick our way!') As it happens, we've just had a missive from the allotment committee to say that we aren't going to be allowed bonfires any more. Some numpty fellow allotmenteer managed to set himself alight, so we're all being penalised. Seems a shame to me.

Crawford and cards
Photo from
Those of you who have kindly been following me for a while might remember my post from July last year entitled Boy genius? (It's here, if you'd like to read it.) Crawford Johnston was 14 at the time and had devised 'Creative Writing Magic Money Cards' as a way to help nine to 15-year-olds improve their creative writing skills. He was enjoying modest success. I have heard from again and it seems his business idea is going from strength to strength. You can read the update on the London Mums Magazine website: here. So, let's celebrate entrepreneurial spirit in the young!

Monday, 16 September 2013

Wedding bells

Best wedding cake EVER!
I went to the most remarkable wedding on Saturday. Congratulations to Becky and Pete, not just on tying the knot, but also for organising such a fabulous day. It was an astonishing mix of the traditional, the informal and the downright quirky. Bride and groom both work in the film industry - and it showed in the attention to detail and the sheer glorious theatre of it all.

After a (mostly) conventional church service, we walked through the village for the reception down by the river, a party on the theme of a meadow picnic. There were trestle tables groaning under the weight of homemade food, champagne all round, fresh flowers hanging from the ceiling of the marquee, straw bales for the guests to sit on, crazy golf and a pick 'n' mix stall.

There were, of course, speeches, but the bride's father kicked things off in fine style by singing his to the tune of 'Paddy McGinty's Goat'. It was hilarious - well, he is a writer and performer, so we expect nothing less. There were 'turns', too, from other members of the wedding party and guests, too numerous to list, but special mention must be made of Becky's sister Sarah, an actress and singer-songwriter, who played and sang beautifully. Tears, aplenty! I'm hoping someone filmed the entertainment and that it will be posted on You Tube.

But surely the quirkiests of all the quirks was the wedding cake, which was a cheese cake: that is to say, a cake made of cheese (pictured, above).


Friday, 13 September 2013

Friday 13th? No worries!

Celebrate the small things with me and the rest of the blog-hoppers via VikLit's Scribblings of an Aspiring Author blog, here.

I've not been feeling my best this week, so I'm celebrating the support I've had from friends and family (and antibiotics!).

I'm celebrating the return of hubby from his golfing weekend with 'the lads'. A good time was had by all down on the south coast, despite the odd shower.

Celebrating, too, my son's girlfriend off to start her midwifery course. Good luck to her and all other freshers.

Big celebrations tomorrow when I'm off to the wedding of friends Becky and Pete. Fingers crossed for good weather.

Feeling stressed?

Any of you who live in the area of Wansford, near Peterborough, might be interested in a workshop I'm helping to run next Saturday, 21st, on yoga for positive living. Details are on my yoga website here. If you fancy learning some strategies and practices to give you a positive outlook, you would be most welcome.
.. and relax.

Friday, 6 September 2013

Welcome to September

Celebrate the small things with me and the rest of the blog-hoppers via VikLit's Scribblings of an Aspiring Author blog, here. Short and sweet today, but I'm celebrating:
  • My e-colleague Linda, whom I haven't met yet, but who has kept me on the straight and narrow with some tricky projects recently
  • My yoga friend Jacqui who helped me out with something today
  • My plumber Justin who has been engaged to remove and replace a radiator for me
  • Becky and the team at the Kettering Arts Centre for organising the Potbelly Folk Festival.
Headliners: The Willows