Saturday, 25 February 2012

My Inspiration....

...............Comes from Paulo Coelho
I read a book of his many years ago, The Alchemist. It is about following your dreams and how sometimes the things you want or need most are right where you are now, you don't have to look far.
Over the years I've read most of Paulo's books, some I've found better than other's but I just love his outlook on life. I often read through the quotes on his website and his regular blog posts are a must. I also look out for his little messages on Facebook, each one speaks out to me (and his 7,712,806 likers) Today he said;
For your own sake, resign from the post of General Manager of Life
and yesterday:
Dreams and love are just words - until you decide to experience them
He is also a very spiritual person, and although we are not from the same line of faith we have many of the same beliefs.
He is very much a modern day philospher, and although you can take his books on face value i.e. simple stories, there is always so much more he is saying. Like all authors he is not to everybody's tase, but to me, well he is my inspiration.

 I've always said what doesn't kill me makes me stronger, this is just a different way of saying the same thing.


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Friday, 17 February 2012

Being Broke!

We went into town on Wednesday for a day out seeing as it was half term. First we went to Waterstones because Cassie was looking for a book. The girls had fun in the children's department. Then we went for lunch at the Loft. I figured a bit of real food was better than the usual Mc Donalds, plus I just love their pie.
Then it was time for the girls to visit Build A Bear. Lucy has her bear already, Bonnie, she's had her since she was a baby and loves her loads so we bought her a lovely new princess outfit and some pink roses shoes. Leila chose a white bear to make and had fun stuffing it and putting in it's little heart. Then she chose a pink dress and some 'glass' slippers. We had lots of fun. We then popped into the Disney Store and the Entertainer. The girls crawled through the tunnel across the ceiling of the shop and down the slide.
Then we came out of the Bullring and I wanted to pop into a card shop. I left Graham outside with the girls and the pushchair, and Cassie popped across to the cashpoint. She met me in the shop and gave me some cash to look after for her. On leaving the shop we split up because the others wanted to go to Gamestation and I wanted to go to Mothercare. I took the puschchair back of Graham but didn't put my purse in my bag as usual, I stuffed it in my pocket, Mothercare was only a minute away.
We split up and shortly afterwards I nearly ran into another girls puschchair causing a bloke behind me to bump into me briefly. I thought nothing of it but when I got to Mothercare I checked for my purse and it was gone. I thought I'd dropped it or left it in the card shop at first but soon it dawned on me that it was probably taken by the bloke that bumped into me.
So I lost everything, my purse, my cash, my cards, my bus ticket home and even Cassie's money that I was looking after.
Cassie managed to scrape together her bus fare home and gave me her Daysaver, it was only an adult one, the one I had lost covered me, Graham and Lucy. I was terrified as I flashed it on the bus but the driver let us on and we managed to get home.
I was having such a lovely day with my family and it was completely ruined by some selfish stranger. I couldn't afford to lose the money I lost but in the end it's only money. The whole experience just made me feel sick.

Saturday, 11 February 2012


I love making cakes, I'm still learning lots but I don't care if they are not perfect, I put my heart and soul into them and really enjoy having something to work on. So here I'm going to post some pictures of cakes I've made in the past year.
My niece's 14th birthday cake

A Portal Cake

coffee and hazelnut cake

Son's Yoda Cake

Friend's daughter's cake

Cupcakes for the teachers

Daughter's Rapunzel Tower cake

other daughter's Princess and Pirate cake

Thursday, 9 February 2012

Always at the Airport, Never on the Plane

I took my eldest son to the airport yesterday, he's going to visit his dad in the South Of france for a while. Things around here were getting him down and he needed a little break. I guess he also wanted to see his dad too!
So we set off to the bus stop to take us to the train station. While waiting for the bus Graham comes running out of the house with the plane and train tickets. mmmm yes, I think we might be needing those!
At the station we have 10 minutes until the train leaves but Craige decides he wants a drink and some chocolate first. Ok, we have time....but not time to walk around the shop 3 times because he can't decide what he wants.
Finally jumping on the train with seconds to spare but chocolate purchased we can continue with Craige's rendition of Chinese History. He'd already talked non-stop on the 25 minute bus journey about it. Ok, I'll admit to finding it quite interesting ;-)
Then he shuts up and gets out his book and we have peace....ahhh! The journey to Liverpool is 1 1/2 hours and it went pretty quick. I was mostly looking out of the window in wonder at all the frozen ponds and rivers, ohhh it looked cold out there!
From the station it was straight on the bus to the airport. From what I saw on the bus journey I was thinking that Liverpool looked just like every other city I'd ever visited, not sure why I was expecting different really, but I've never been there before. On this bus Craige decides that it was probably not a good idea to pack his spray can of deodorant and wants to get it out of his case. We wait until we get to the airport, 40 minutes until gates close, and grab a baguette and a drink while we remove the offending aerosole from his suitcase. Then he checks in and is on his way through passengers only gate within 15 minutes. I watch him as long as he's in view like it would be the last time I ever saw him again, just in case.
Then it was back on the bus to the station. Waiting on the platform I can't believe that the train I'm supposed to be on is not showing on the screen. It was freezing and the screen was telling me I had an hour wait. So I decided to go back inside the actual station so I didn't freeze to the platform. At the top of the stairs I saw the train I wanted pulling in on a different platform...eeek! One mad dash and I made just before the door closed. It took me 5 minutes to get my breath back, but then I settled in for the journey home, looking to the skies for a glimpse of a plane, any plane, so I could wave goodbye to my son one more time.

Tuesday, 7 February 2012

Tick tick tick -BOOM!

Living with someone with Bi-Polar is extremely difficult. Every day is like walking on eggshells. From the moment she walks in the door your senses go on full alert, not sure what to expect but expecting the worst. nine times out of ten her first words are words of complaint. I don't think I've ever known someone complain so much. Dinner time is the worst. I have seven to cook for and a tiny kitchen, put anyone else in there and tell them to cook for seven and I'm sure they wouldn't cope. Not only that but I usually have to cook two or three different meals. It's all in the timing, most of the time I get it right, but sometimes I still screw up. So, when I've been through this trial the last thing I want is complaints and insults about my food. It's cold, it's not cooked properly, it's got no taste, it looks disgusting etc etc. No-one else complains.
The mood swings are hard to deal with. Sometimes she's hyper happy, loud, bossy, and really full of herself. She's difficult to deal with like this, you just have to go along with it. Then she's miserable, her life is a disaster, she can't take anymore, and she sobs and sobs.
You can sometimes see her inner struggle as she tries to maintain some sort of equilibrium, especially around the little ones. She'll be kind and play with them, but then, when she's had enough, she wants them to go away. Not easy for a six, four and seventeen month old to understand. She can't stand the noise, she can't stand them in her personal space. Sometimes she will struggle inwardly and remain calm while asking for them to go away, but it they don't she will explode. The struggle is something new, in fact I see her struggle in other areas too (with me in particular) You may think it strange but I take the struggle as a good thing, because it shows that she's really trying to control herself. Before she struggled she just let rip.
I spend most my days biting my tongue, not reacting to her. I tread the eggshells, I go out of my way and my own comfort zone to keep her in a stable mood. The same goes for her older brother and my partner. But sometimes we reach our limits and can't take anymore. That's when the bomb goes off, particularly if it's me that's snapped. We have the most awful rows, no-one ever wins, we both feel awful afterwards, we both blame each other and we don't always apologise afterwards.
But, we both know that we love each other, and I guess deep down, we are not that different.

Saturday, 4 February 2012

Night out!

When I worked at the uni I made two lovely friends and we have stayed in touch ever since, even though I left the job 11 years ago. We always meet up at Christmas, birthdays and often try a summer date too (seeing as we were all born in winter!)
Last night it was a birthday celebration in a local(ish) pub. Now, it's been a long time since I got drunk and I wasn't really planning on getting drunk last night. It's not fun feeling drunk or hungover when you've got 3 little ones who often need mummy during the night. But we were having such a good night with lots of laughs and had moved onto these funny little drinks called bombs, which as the name suggests  were potent. We were drinking Glitter Bombs a mixture of goldschlager and redbull, you get a shot glass floating in a glass and drink them both together. I don't even like red bull!!
Around 9pm my friend looked at her watch and told us the time saying 'oh, we are now about to enter the Twilight Zone' followed by a little Twilight Zone music. (Of course if you are younger than 35 you probably think this has something to do with Vampires and Werewolves, but actually it doesn't) We established that this actually meant that the next time one of us looked at the time it would seem like only 5 minutes had past but it would be ten to 11. 5 minutes later I was at the bar with my friend and I looked at the clock....10.50pm yep, the Twilight Zone had got us again.
When I got home I was feeling quite alien, but very happy. I did what you should never ever do when drunk and updated my facebook status, I wrote 'drinkiong gold asnsdv qwerll pisaghedf musyt gop to bed so weird twoligfhtv zxonmer'
translated into English, 'drinking gold and feeling well pissed must go to bed so weird twilight zone ' punctuation goes out the window when drunk!
The kids were fantastic throughout the night. Joseph woke twice but went straight back to sleep. Lucy got me up at 5.30am and I had an headache, but nothing a couple of paracetomal couldn't clear :-)

Friday, 3 February 2012

The Story of a Council House repair

I've lived in my council house for more than 22 years now and I have many stories to tell. My partner gets annoyed with me when I don't report minor repairs or take ages to report them, but I'm honestly sick of the whole process and will deliberately delay it as long as possible.
Here is my latest story and it begins 5 years ago when we had our radiators installed. They put one in our loo and I informed them that the wall wasn't very strong as Craige had put a hole in it and I'd filled it with PolyFilla. I said there was no way it would hold a radiator, but what did I know? The radiator was fitted on the faulty wall. Cut to 4 years later when the radiator first fell off the wall, I'm really surprised it lasted so long but knew it was inevitable. They sent out a man who said "that radiator should not have been put there, the wall isn't strong enough" No, really! So unable to re fix the radiator he left saying he'd send out a plasterer. The plasterer arrived and said, I can't remove the radiator to fix the wall I'm not qualified, I'll call the gas people to remove it. I gave up when no-one turned up and propped the radiator up (still partially attached) and waited until it was really necessary to have it fixed.
So a few weeks ago the radiator started leaking. *sigh* I called the repair service. The man came. "I can't see where the leak is coming from" he said. That's because it was coming from a pipe that was covered with trunking which he made no attempt to remove. "You need to get the radiator fixed back on the wall then it will stop leaking. I haven't got the right tools, I'll get someone else to do it"
Two weeks later I get a letter saying they had been trying to contact me but had no luck by telephone. Very strange, I'd had no calls on home phone or mobile and no messages. So I call the number they gave me in the letter repeatedly over the next three days and it's constantly engaged.
Then a guy turns up at the door. "I've come to fix your radiator" whoopee I cried and did a little dance (not really, I'm joking!)
Taking a look, notice I say look, he didn't actually touch the radiator, he said "I can't fix that, I don't have the right tools" oh really! "You'll need that wall plastered properly before I can do anything, I'll get a plasterer to come out" deja vu. He turned to leave....oh no you don't, I blocked his way out of the loo, "would it not be a good idea to remove the radiator so that when the plasterer comes he can actually get to the wall to plaster it?" mmmm, yes, ok. And radiator was removed. He left me with the knowledge that they only had one plasterer and he only worked on Thursdays. As it was Thursday it was going to be at least a week before he could come. Oh Joy!
This morning I wake up to a flood in the loo. So I call the repairs team and they will be sending someone out today!