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Dear unsolicited advice givers ….you were wrong!

Once upon a time in the distant past that feels a million years ago but also almost like yesterday I was the mum of 3 children under 3 (3 under 2 and a half if I want to sound extra crazy)

The problem with having babies out in public is people feel obliged to hand out advice . To give their opinion on child rearing , specifically on how you should bring up your child . These are strangers I must stress who have no more emotional ties than happening to plonk their arse down next to you on the bus that day or sit on the next table to you in a cafe. 

Not only was I there with ALL the babies , I was young when I had the big three and that made folk think their advice was even more necessary. 

Advice when asked for is a wonderful thing because you can choose who you ask. You can decide who in your life may be wise , experienced and non judgemental enough to help you out. 

Unsolicited advice though , especially to me rocking about like the Old Woman Who Lived In A Shoe never went down well. So I just thought I’d update some of those pearls of wisdom that were given to me and maybe even reassure a few of you that it’ll all be ok (without giving unsolicited,preachy advice of course)

“he /she will NEVER give that dummy up” 

Glorious first born never had a dummy. Back then I had more idealism that experience and thought them the work of the devil. 

Then came child two , the hungriest baby that ever did live . A Velcro baby who just loved comfy cosy sooooo much. He bloody loved his dummy , more than he loved his family , life itself but probably not more than he loved porridge!!!

However advice givers , of which there were many , he is now 16 and oddly doesn’t have a dummy now . Nor do his younger siblings . They gave them up way before school without really too much heartache!!!

” You’ll have to potty train early with 3 little ones or you’ll be nappy changing forever” 

I can see the thought behind the particular gem. 3 babies means lots of nappies and who wants to be dealing with other people’s bodily fluids for the rest of their lives ??? However potty training is a total pain in the arse. It took a few false attempts with glorious first born and I decided balls to early potty training , it’d be best waiting till they could talk and tell me they need to go !!! When I say talk I don’t mean “oh dearest mummy , be a lamb and get me to the lavatory would you , and fetch a wipe and none of those cheap ones , they make one’s bottom awfully sore” 

I mean more grunting and pointing. So late potty training was our thing ….BUT at 17,16,15 and 10 everyone can toilet independently , and could before school. (The unsolicited advice givers are obsessed with how all kids ‘these days ‘ turn up to school with nappies and dummies )

“Don’t cuddle them to sleep. They’ll NEVER learn to self settle” 

I loved the fact the babies fell asleep snuggled up with me . It was lovely and sweet . Well except eldest girl who didn’t really care for human interaction and much preferred independent life from being virtually new born. 

These children were going to grow up damaged adults what with letting them fall asleep on me WHAT ABOUT WHEN THEY ARE MARRIED!!!! The people worrying about a six month old nodding off on his mummy would cry. Now I’m sure you are a childcare expert oh wise stranger , however I reckon if he still needs his mum to settle him to sleep when he’s 30 there’s gonna be no one wanting to marry him!!

No-one needs to fall asleep on my lap these days ,it’s all fine. Small girl does when I’m turning out her bedroom light occasionally ask “fancy a cuddle” which I’ll never resist but am always chucked out of her bed for being too big after roughly 2.5 seconds so I dont think she’s traumatised.

“Don’t over praise them”

This one is not so much random strangers giving unsolicited advice , but newspaper articles and magazines. We’re bringing up a generation of children who expect a well done for carrying out the simplest of tasks …so spoilt with parental praise they’ll never be fit for the work place…or adult life !

This in my opinion is utter balls!! 

I’ll never not praise the kids. They know I think they are the best humans on the planet , but they’re not expecting the rest of the world to get on their knees and sing songs filled with praise to them and be memorised by their awesomeness. I however , always will (except the singing bit -the teens don’t like that)

“People shouldn’t bring children into this terrible world”

THIS comment was THE one , the one that I as a relatively placid person could easily lose my shit about. That a hormonal ,sleep deprived woman with a double buggy and a baby strapped to her chest could have a full blown breakdown about. 

It still makes me angry now to think of it.

Yes the world is undoubtedly not in great shape right now . I’m not sure what kinda state it was in in the early 2000s when these guys were born because I wasn’t sleeping!!! 

The world now is a negative scary place at the minute but I would never think to tell anyone not to bring babies into it ! The future has to be hope , or what ? We just shut up the planet and label it a bad job . I wrote just last week about how the teenagers and young people of the world fill me full of hope ,just here . 

So I’ll stick with what was always my response to the old ladies telling me I shouldn’t have brought children into this awful world.

Maybe we need them to make it better.

So parents of the world who worry about dummies and picky eaters and toilet training and hitting milestones late and co sleeping and velcro babies . Who are bombarded with advice without asking for it ? Well….. I’m not going to give unsolicited advice here, not me , no way…..all I’ll say is this …

There are 4 older kids in this house and not a dummy , nappy or bottle to be seen!!

DIY Daddy


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The Pramshed

My Facebook page is here


If Mother’s Day makes you miserable…

Mother’s Day for me is as much as a downer as Valentines Day , and that is saying something.



I don’t have a mum. She died almost 19 years ago. Before I was really a grown up , before I was a mum myself . I haven’t had a mum for a long time and I’m no longer grief stricken in that all encompassing , consuming way that fresh bereavement brings with it. I don’t have parents , that’s been part of my life for a very long time. I don’t weep everytime I think of it or flinch from talking about them.



Mother’s Day though that always feel like a bit of a stomach punch for me . It hits hard and it hurts and it lingers . I think it’s because it is everywhere. I have had emails everyday for about 3 weeks telling me to treat mum , buy her something special. TV ads are there too telling me to spoil my mum , get her a cute personalised card , take her out for dinner. Well you know what advertisers ? I’d love to. I’d be delighted to be able to take my mam out for dinner somewhere fancy , I never ever got to do that you see. I’d only just finished my A levels when my mum died . I wish with all my might that tomorrow we could do a lovely Sunday lunch , my mam and my children , my sister and hers . I wish we could have one of those days the advertisers are shoving down our throats. I wish I could spoil her – only present I can remember getting her was a pack of dusters when I was about 7 because she’d been saying she needed new ones ( I’d like to think that my gift giving skills have improved since then)



Mother’s Day without a mum sucks , I’ve seen a few other people mention they feel the same over the past week or so on social media . I suppose it’s just because we are bombarded with what we are missing . Highlights the hole in your life.




It’s not just the lack of a mum that gives me the Mothers Day angst.



I’m a single mum too , again I have been for a long while . There is no other adult here to give me a well done or make me feel special and that’s a bit of a niggle too. The kids will ( I hope ) have made cards and small girl’s daddy will have gotten a gift for them to give me and we’ll have a lovely tea and possibly a Mothers Day disco if we’re feeling that way inclined . It just all leaves me really flat and exhausted. A total fake of a day. That in itself makes me feel guilty , surely Mother’s Day should be spent dwelling on how bloody lucky I am to have these 4 amazing nutcases in my life. Instead I’ll be feigning happiness and joy that simply is stripped away from me on Mothers Day. I know that feeling this way stems from the toxic relationship I was in when I was first a mum and for the years after. Some of you may unfortunately know that big days and events that aren’t focussed on the perpetrator in those kind of relationships can be horrific. Kids birthdays , Christmasses well they were volatile enough but Mother’s Day ???Whole other level. You may be showered with expensive gifts in front of people to have them smashed to bits when you’re alone or you could be told that you’re too much of a shit mum to get a card on Mother’s Day . You don’t deserve it .

I think this is one of my few remaining hang ups left over from those times . Maybe I’d have conquered it with setting our own traditions and taking back Mothers Day like I have so much other stuff but the thing with it is I already feel like the wind has been taken out of my sails with not having a mum and I don’t really have the energy to fight THIS added problem that kills Mother’s Day stone dead for me .



I didn’t intend to make all this about me honestly. As I say often my blog is therapeutic and getting thoughts out of my head into words on a page really helps me understand myself and my thinking better. I don’t resent other people having the worlds best day I feel obliged to say . I love seeing the happy pics on social media of mums with their feet up , having breakfast in bed . I love to see amazing mums thanked and celebrated , they bloody deserve it ! Tell me stories of your mums and how they are absolute rocks ! I don’t scroll through social media cursing those celebrating the day I promise ( possibly DO do that on Valentine’s Day)





There are many of us though, for whom Mother’s Day is painful .

There are a multitude of reasons why .

It could be that you’re not a mum when that’s all you want in the world , that must be almost unbearably hard.

Maybe you’ve lost a child , that would be a traumatic thing to deal with on a day celebrating mothers. I can offer no words of comfort there because I’m almost sure there are none.

Maybe you have an ill child , are ill yourself , have an ill mum and are dealing with just try to get through a day.

Maybe Mother’s Day triggers poor mental health , I’ve certainly been feeling as though an anxiety flare up could be on the horizon.

Maybe you are in an abusive relationship. Forcedly estranged from your mum and other family , feeling so alone and trapped . Told what a terrible mother and person you are , that you’re pathetic and useless , that your kids would be better off in care than with you. To you women let me just say this , you are outstanding , you are doing an amazing job in intolerable circumstances and you deserve to be free. You are worthy of love and of kindness , you are worthy of being supported and empowered not kept down and silenced . When the day comes that you are able to leave , all these things will find their way to you because it’s no less than you deserve.


Maybe you don’t have your children with you this mother’s day for one reason or another and there is a painful void .



I don’t have the answers on how to make this day more tolerable , bloody hell I’m here writing a blog post that is basically one long whinge.



All I can offer is that Mother’s Day is just one day . That’s my mantra . Just one day . The next day will be better , less pressured . Surround yourself with people who lessen your pain if you at all possibly can. Fill your own little world with people who make you feel better , even if that just means spending time alone. Me ? I will be having a day with these awesome individuals that make me realise that even the shittiest days can be tolerated. I’ll also be tossing about on social media as per usual so if anyone wants to chat I’ll be around . Whether that’s because you are struggling or you just want a distraction and fancy chatting about trash tv I am your girl ( The seven year switch eh??….looks to be a cracker!! How about Richard from married at first sight??….sorry I digress…)


See you on the other side!!





My Facebook page is here

The teens have got this

Teenagers get a bad press. 

Have had since the dawn of time. 

Thugs , hooded louts who roam the streets terrorising us in their packs, off their faces on legal highs???

I don’t recognise those ones though . I’m the mum of 3 teenagers and I’m offended on their behalves by lazy stereotypes and negativity. Course there will be horrid teens ….but there are horrid people my age too but I don’t think I can be judged by their behaviours! I’m a single mum so pigeon holes rub me up the wrong way as it is but I certainly think our teenagers deserve much more credit.

Over the past few weeks I’ve seen a wave of teen activism which is way more familiar to me as the kind of teenagers I know . The bravery of young women speaking out against sexual harassment as part of the #metoo movement. Reclaim the Night here in Manchester hugely driven by the Student Union. These I can identify with as the work of teenagers rather than those anti social grunters , succumbing to rickets due to lack of daylight and screen addiction (though even I had to admit to being at least on nodding terms with those guys too on occasion!)

On the wake of yet another school shooting in the US we have seen a group of people rise. To take on the NRA and the gun entitled of America. A group of people so very passionate about protecting kids in school. A group not wanting to fight gun crime with more guns but less.

This group are not the parents of children fighting to keep them safe , not the grandparents saying enough is enough , too many children have gone to school never to come home. This group , being loud , being vocal , being heard are the kids themselves . The ones who have seen their friends gunned down ,who have been wounded themselves.

Emma Gonzalez has become the face of these people. An intelligent , articulate,passionate  young woman  . Watching her speech gave me hope ,it’s here if you missed it.

This woman is taking on a president who wants to arm teachers , she’s taking on a mindset that puts the right to own a gun over the right for people not to be shot. The movement “We call BS” is formed and these young people want to be heard.

They’re belittled of course , you can’t stop these shootings .You’ll never see gun control in the US , hush with the youthful optimism and just accept the status quo.

Thankfully they’re not listening .

Femi Oluwole is a UK activist , co founder of the ‘Our future , Our choice ‘ movement. An anti Brexit group passionate about the fact that young people voted heavily to remain , the thinking behind the campaign being that in the 20 , 30 years it’ll take to fully see Brexit , make our own laws ,secure trade deals that Brexit will no longer represent the will of the people.

I won’t get into the argument behind this or Brexit at all here . What does make me happy is young people sticking their head above the parapet and demanding to be listened to.

Teenagers are hushed often , told their views are invalid as they don’t know much. The young people in America standing up against the NRA have been mocked , have been accused of being actors in a bid to silence them . Femi Oluwole has been shouted down by middle aged presenters who are supposedly interviewing him. I just hear a big hush , a ‘sit down and shut up ‘ when young people articulate themselves.

The thing is though. You can’t silence young people in 2018. Our teenagers use social media like we do oxygen. They can mobilise an army of like minded individuals with one tweet. They can and they will make themselves heard and I for one want to listen. I want to hear their thoughts on their futures , I want passionate people involved in the shaping of our world. We , as older people , expect to be listened to simply because we’ve been on the planet longer. Though looking at it from a young person’s eyes we picked Trump , we voted Brexit based on a promise on a bus , we haven’t stood up and spoken out. No wonder they are frustrated.

I saw a tweet from Barack Obama in the wake of the Florida shooting which resonated with me 

Teens – we’ve got your backs .
You’ve got this.

My Facebook page is here

3 Little Buttons

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          Mummy in a Tutu

The Pramshed

Not Just the 3 of Us


Things I’ve learned watching the Winter Olympics……

1) Teen boy the elder will watch any old shite if you wrap it up as sport.

2) As will I!

3) My dream to compete in the Olympics still has a shot!

It’s a source of mirth that I am determined to compete in the Olympics in something. Yes I am 38 . Yes I do not excel in any sport. This is a prob…..

HOWEVER I keep hearing in these Olympics how people have only been doing these sports a little while. Curling has my name on it? Surely .

4) Figure skating has changed!

I was sooooo into figure skating 20 plus years ago, obsessively so. I think it started when Torvil and Dean made their comeback…..oh the heartbreak. Then I fell in love with Steven Cousins….

I actually made an ex boyfriend come to the British Figure Skating Championship so I could throw roses at Steve!

However when I watch figure skating now I don’t really recognise the scoring or the method behind it or anything and TEAM events now. I must regroup with figure skating !! Talking of figure skating love…

5) Have a bit of a Christopher Dean crush

Makes no sense , I saw that documentary they did during their comeback and he was a bit of a dick to Jayne , making her cry…..but whilst he’s been commentating I seem to have gotten a bit soft on him!

7) Curling is gripping

Hooks you in ! Before you know it you’re there shouting ‘great shot’ like you know what you’re talking about.

Also though , the female curlers are bloody stunningly beautiful! Almost distract me from the game such is their beauty… almost. So yeah bit of a crush on Eve Muirhead too!

8) I’m a total coward

90% of my Winter Olympics viewing is spent saying ‘oooo I could never do that!’ 

Snow cross???? That’s bloody mental !!! 

Snowboarding? Ski jump? These people are so amazingly brave and talented ,I am in awe!

9) I’ll never get into ice hockey

I’ve tried , honestly I have!! I just can’t get involved. You an barely see the puck and it just looks like a load of people barging about with no real skill.

Disclaimer: I obviously am aware there is a lot of skill in the game , It’s just not going to be a sport I can get behind !

10) Sport causes tears

Sport in general has me shedding as many tears as Doctor Who does and you all know how much I weep at that!!! Something about an Olympics though , all those hopes and dreams that have been 4 years in the making . Hits me right in the feels!! I mean poor Elise Christie that poor ,poor woman. Heart broke a little for her!!!

See you in 4 years for more Winter Olympics fun and games!!!Can’t wait!!

One Messy Mama

My Facebook page is here


The sweetest sixteen…

Once upon a time there was a baby. 

He was ever so beautiful , ever so cuddly and ever so hungry. His favourite hobbies were waking up every hour to be fed , cuddles , soft fleecy blankets ,being held and the occasional nap between meals. He had a big brother who loved to slobber all over him (kiss him he would say) and show him off like he was the crown jewels.The baby had little choice in this whole ‘brother’ thing bit he never seemed to mind too much .

The baby grew bigger , unsurprisingly given his milk intake and discovered food was a thing. It was a revelation !! It got better than milk!!! I mean porridge – whoever invented that bad boy was a genius according to our baby!

He carried on growing,much like the story of the Very Hungry Caterpillar only instead of becoming a beautiful butterfly he became the world’s cutest toddler ! Seriously I only have to think of his blonde hair and huge eyes and my womb starts having funny ideas. He was a bit clumsy and fell over his own feet a lot . His mummy just assumed that was genetic as she did too….turned out years and years of doctors and A and E trips and podiatrist appointments down the line he had a bend in a bone in his leg that noone picked up on and that’s why he fell. His mummy felt pretty bad about that but wondered if she could get in on some of this bent leg action to account for her clumsiness. 

Our world’s cutest toddler also struggled with his speech a bit. Again his mummy would insist to anyone who dare mention this that she could understand him as could his auntie and grandma so if you couldn’t that’s your problem. Much to mummy’s dismay a speech therapist fixed our hero and ‘doos’ became shoes and ‘nunny’ became dummy and mummy cursed that speech therapist as his mispronunciation was just adorable .

Pre schooler boy loved collecting. Really loved collecting. Wooden Thomas trains , Bob the Builder toys , Engie Benjy vehicles! What do you mean what’s Engie Benjy??It was kind of a Bob rival but voiced by Ant and Dec , it was pretty cool!! He’d spend hours racing these toys all separated into teams and leagues . He’d never grow out of liking a good league . 

Seriously I could just squish that little face !!!

He also loved setting ridiculous challenges for the adults in his life requesting green dummies and elephant shaped biscuits and other bizarre items. The grown ups in his life of course would take on these challenges because if you succeeded you’d be his hero!!

Through primary school at some point our boy discovered football . His elder brother had always been a sports nut but younger boy wasn’t keen. Until he was obsessed ….a character trait from his mum being he is either obsessed by something or has zero interest. We don’t really do in between. The boy breathes football. He has his precious Hull City and beloved Stockport County but it goes deeper than that. One night he and I sat and he was looking at obscure Greek football tables and results for hours .

He also became an author ! His Dusty Rusty series were a triumph! Well we all thought so anyway, I can still imagine they’ll be published one day!

The dreaded teen years came …. but they were …well great actually!!! When you’ve had 3 babies under 3 – teenagers who can feed themselves and toilet alone bring not a lot to fear really. 

He also bloody loves an evening with a rom com

So today that hungry ,cute,  cuddly baby is now – well a hungry, cute ,  cuddly 16 year old actually. An amazing young man who thinks a lot and questions a lot. Who is creative and thoughtful and kind and caring. Who would still wake to eat hourly if he could get away with it . Who does the best Garth Crooks impression and who is going to go on Pointless with me as his knowledge is pretty widespread and impressive. Whose personality I can see reflecting back at me like a mirror which is weird . …and frustrating as hell should we disagree and both dig our heels in as far as they can possibly go!!

Happy Birthday gorgeous one ! I’m so lucky to get to be the one you call mum , you’re a delight and I am so proud of the person you are . I can’t wait to watch you change the world in your own thoughtful , considered way . The universe is made infinitely better by having you in it!


After The Playground


Burnished Chaos


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Reasons little sisters are awesome (mine specifically)

It’s something that will be held against me all of my life , but an anecdote told over and over by my mam. When they brought home my little baby sister from the hospital she was squarking away whilst I was trying to watch Rainbow (and just remember you only got one shot at kids TV back then , no iPlayer or all day kids channel) I turned to my parents and said “Why couldn’t we just have got a dog instead of a baby” which given the circumstances highlighted above I’m sure you can completely understand!! 

She’s grown on me through the years though and now I’m a big fan of my little sister . Here’s why she’s awesome : 

1) She makes me laugh like noone else in the world does , has or will.

At least once everytime I talk to her on the phone I laugh , at her house I spend half the time guffawing ,or honking as my nephew once referred to it.

She’s just a naturally funny human , we were going to turn her into a stand up comedian once but we only really had 2 jokes!! I don’t know if this is a universal younger sibling thing or not !

She is my personal shopper 

She sends stuff like this. I appreciate it. 

She produces fabulously quirky humans

Eldest nephew has the same hilarious traits as his mother , he is so funny I am going to have to step up my campaign to get him to write me a guest blog. My niece is so like me I think shes amazing , goody two shoes with a slightly clumsy side , how is that not just adorable. WE ARE ADORABLE NOT ANNOYING!! Youngest nephew is the quirkiest of all…. I’ll just leave this here….

Yep….just casually reading the Bible in the Drs surgery…

She’s down with the kids

Literally on the floor ,taken down by the kids after challenging this one to a wrestling match……fool

She makes me feel really wise….

Especially about cooking!!! 

Once years ago she did ask me how you should cook lettuce so we’ve certainly moved on…

Unfortunately I think I have just been an extraordinary advice giver as her dinner pics these days are delicious, bit hey this is meant to be about her not me!

In jokes are the funniest thing!

This is the case for most people, there is nothing funnier than having someone around you can just say a word or two and they know exactly what you mean….also since gifs I can take it to a new level…. 

Tee hee hee stupid monpole !

She’s a hangover fairy godmother

Wine gets consumed when I make it home for a visit. A lot of wine. 

Yet you always wake up amazingly hangover free in the morning… can’t understand it ,you think you’ve managed to get back to your pre child self who didn’t get hangovers.

Until she tells you she woke you with painkillers and water at the crack of dawn in a preemptive strike!! Magic! 

She is a one off….

Absolutely broke the mould after her. Her opinions on dinosaurs and space are as funny as they are frustrating……the questions she thinks of are as though someone has made a new brain prototype as I honestly don’t think the things she ponders have ever crossed another person’s mind!!! I’ve got to get her into vlogging her little ideas as I really have to share this with the world!!
Along with all her quirks though and her funniness and basic all round entertainment value there is so much more to her . 

She’s great to rant at , she’ll listen and then do anything she can to help 

She’s the fun auntie everyone has funny stories about.

She’s an amazing mum. 

A really amazing mum.

They’ve had a really rough time over there recently and I hate not being close enough to help out. She’s there though , getting on with it . Parenting the shit out of life and managing to be in 10 places at once (obviously not literally I’ve not managed to clone her yet – I’ll share her when I do!) I couldn’t be prouder of her ability to deal with 10 tonnes of crap and still finding time to tag me in FB memes !!

Happy Birthday LouLou , I love you!…… now PLEASE come to see Wicked with me???


What’s your favourite thing about your siblings??

Burnished Chaos

Show yourself the love this Valentine’s…

I admit I dislike Valentine’s Day. 

However I do really like the idea of love and romance ,of thoughtfulness and little gifts and letting other people know we’re quite fond of them! 

So rather than sit like the Grinch of Valentine’s I’m going to go for “If you can’t beat them join them” school of thought this year. Let’s hijack this celebration and use for a whole lot of self love.

Here’s a few ideas of Valentine’s treats you can spoil  yourself with.

Have half an hour with a book

Have someone else cook dinner
Be that a partner , children that are old enough or the lovely chef at the local takeaway.

Have a bath , in peace 

Take a magazine , soak in bubbles alone.

Watch an old favourite movie

Probably when the kids are in bed.

Get in touch with someone who makes you smile

Practice gratitude 

Make a list of things you are grateful for today.

Buy someone a little gift , just because.

Finding the perfect little gift for someone I care about is instant happiness for me!

Organise a night out with old friends

Buy yourself something you want not need

Even if it’s just an old copy of a favourite book from the charity shop.

Tell someone how fab you think they are 

I did this recently it’s here if you want inspiration!

I know for some of you with little kids some of these ideas will sound like the stuff of fantasy. “A bath in peace ?” Is this woman batshit crazy I hear you cry! I know. I empathise. I remember. 

You may have to tweak my suggestions a little! Bloody hell I may have to tweak my suggestions a little – a 3 teen household with also a 9yr old Lush addict and I’m banking on a long soak in the bath ? Maybe I am batshit crazy!

Do something nice for yourself this Valentine’s. If you’re loved up and happy then enjoy being spoilt by another grown up with likely better suggestions than mine – enjoy!!

If you’re the single type just think back to Valentine’s past and be grateful you don’t have to go through someone presenting you with the world’s most garish underwear (wrong size obvs ) and assuming this means their luck is in tonight ! 

Enjoy love week , I personally think Valentine’s should end at Primary school when the handmade cards and question marks do……although I could do a V day turnaround if handmade cards and question marks made a comeback!!! 

Take note Mr Perfect


My Facebook page is here

Burnished Chaos

Things I learned from my sickbed….

We’ve been ill for weeks small girl and I.

You’ve probably heard me whinging about it all over social media. 

We’ve had this flu like bug that’s been around and it has been grim. It’s a particularly yukky bug which wipes you out , makes you feel like crap and just when you think you’re getting better…zap! Back to square one…

Anyway during this fortnight of  coughing and snot and fevers and aches and pains I believe I actually have learnt a thing or two ,ever looking for the silver linings…

YouTube is a handy nurse

Yes small girl was bored not being in school and her favourite pastime of cooking and baking was out as let’s face it who wants to eat food prepared by Slimer?!

So YouTube came into its own. She was kept quiet watching her nutty videos and even more amazing I discovered some of her youtubers voices are really soothing. I mean most of them are crazily annoying but when we’ve slouched on the sofa under a duvet as she’s watching them one or two of their voices did have me dozing off!!!

Feeding a cold just makes it more hungry

What’s the phrase feed a cold and starve a fever?? Something like that anyway. Turns out when small girl is ill , no-one tells her appetite. She ate ….and ate….and ate. You know the children’s story The Very Hungry Caterpillar? That was small girl. 

I was forcing down soup and veg and super spicy curry to try and shift the cold,but it was a real effort. Small girl was behaving as though she was on Man V Food…. and she definitely emerged victorious!!

She has a great taste in books

We read together every night at bedtime but while ill we snuggled and read together some more. We’re almost finished The Person Controller by David Baddie. It is such a great book. We read Animalcolm not long back and really loved that too! So much I have got us tickets for the theatre show for her birthday (sssshhh don’t tell) She likes a funny book with great characters and an enthralling story and it seems I do too!

Eucalyptus is our bff

Olbas oil in the bath , Vicks on our feet ,oil on the radiator. Even our next door neighbours must be breathing better!

The elder 3 are very nearly great carers

They did try to look after us ,they really did. They were on hand with water and asking how we were and teen girl was basically small girl’s hot chocolate servant. 

I’d highly recommend the teens as a nursing staff……well….as long as you don’t mind folk taking the piss out of the fact your voice has gone missing , repeating your ‘I don’t get ill ‘ boast to you and that you can cope with people hushing your coughing  and referring to you not as mum but as Wheezy,from Toy Story then it’s all fun and games!!!

Being well rocks!!

Obvious one this but nothing like being wiped out for a few weeks to make you promise yourself you’ll be so grateful when you recover!! How I’ll eat superfoods to boost this immune system of mine , I’ll probably go for a run or two – healthy body always good right??
Let’s not kid ourselves though , the perfect end of illness treat is eating all the junk you had no desire for whilst sick and lying on the sofa watching crap TV. You’ve gotta conserve your energy after all!!

I’m just hoping we’re done with bugs,coughs and colds for a little while now!! January was not fun , let’s do better February please!

Burnished Chaos

Me, Being Mummy


Aaarrgghh…what is with the phone related anxiety??

I love my phone , I do!! Probably a bit too much . I wrote only last week here about how I think I could make  a few changes in my life in order to use my phone less.

My phone is my blog , it’s amazing articles fab people share on Twitter that I never would have seen otherwise. It’s chatting on Twitter about Bake Off and Strictly with folk I’ve never met but share common interests with. 

My phone is Facebook , it’s keeping connected with people who are as busy as I am and don’t always have time to catch up with personally! It’s bickering with my siblings whilst we find ourselves so unbelievably hilarious it probably should be a bit embarrassing.

My phone is my teenagers sending memes and articles they think will amuse me ,and they do. My phone is even for texts (yeah I still text! i am that old!) 

A ‘Good Morning’

A ‘How’s your day been ‘

A ‘saw this and thought of you’

A ‘good luck’

It’s a way of letting people know I’m thinking of them and that they are me too!

Do you know what my phone is not for though?

It’s certainly,absolutely not for phone calls.

No way. 

(unless it’s my sister)

I like to think on a day to day basis I am on top of many of my anxiety wobbles. On the whole I can deal with people , even strangers. I can walk into a room full of people I don’t know without feeling as though I’m going to faint or get those horrid stomach cramps or feel my face begin to go numb. It’s taken a long time to get here and I’ll fall backwards from time to time but I can do it. 

The phone though??? Making phonecalls , even answering phone calls just make me want to find a nice black hole somewhere to hide in! I can’t stand it.

It’s irrational I know that , I have never come to harm because of calling someone up but nothing strikes anxiety into my bones like the thought of having to call a stranger. 

Having to make a dentist or doctors appointment takes hours of psyching myself up . Then when I do build myself up to do it and I’m asked to repeat myself (I live away from ‘home’ and my accent can be tricky on the phone for some reason) then I’m all put in a spin and decide it’s best I never speak again.

Calling a venue to enquire after details of an event is unbearable . I will always always email if that is an option.

Seeing errors on bills has me weighing up whether it’s worth just losing the money so as I don’t have to speak to someone.

Phonecalls are my kryptonite , my Achilles heel,my weak link. 

They’re the thing that when I’m proud of how far I’ve come with my anxiety, how much better I feel ,how much progress I’ve made sniggers at me from the sidelines.

“yeah you think you’re over me ???How abouts you call up that night class you fancy doing now you’re all social then?? – loser!”

It’s really frustrating and irritating that this thing , which should be a tiny nothing is still the thing that has my tummy churning and breathing off kilter and heart racing.

Maybe I need to just bite the bullet , spend the whole day doing all the phonecalls I need to make as some kind of  anti aversion therapy. …those of us who do suffer from anxiety though are so aware that doing things that provoke anxiety are often about as easy as flying to the moon!!

I will overcome this one , as I’ve overcome so many other anxiety triggers. I just don’t know how yet is all!!

My Facebook page is here

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Me, Being Mummy

The Pramshed

One Messy Mama


My Facebook page is here


We’re all stories in the end….

Today would have been my dad’s birthday. I’ll probably talk about him more than usual to the kids today. Tell stories of when their auntie and I were little , re-tell some of his terrible jokes.

I wrote a post here a few years back now about how my parents are fairytale like to my children. This can be a lovely thing. Over years I guess and with each telling stories are embellished,not wholly accurate details are added and stories and tales we tell about my parents probably aren’t an absolute true reflection of events.

This picture here I remember that day ,my brother and his wife had brought us Easter eggs , the one in my hand was a buttons one and I remember my mam saying how we had too much chocolate and we had to just have a bit . I remember the feel of that bloody awful sofa and itchy cardigan.

I think that’s probably the comfort of time passing ,the pain of grief lessens and chatting about people no longer here keeps their memory alive and in our thoughts.

That said , sometimes even time can play little tricks on your mind. Last week I was at the shops and I noticed some Christmas stock in the sale. It was sets of kids crockery : a plate , bowl and mug that when you stacked up made up a snowman. I had a total nostalgia flashback of a similar set I had as a kid. An immediate thought flickered into my head “I’ll have to ask my mam about that” 

Where the hell did that come from??My mum died nearly 19 years ago!!!

Maybe that’s what the story telling does? Keeps them in mind to the point odd things like that happen.
Freaked me out a little bit I can tell you.

All these thoughts of the stories we tell got me thinking.

I wonder what my children will tell about me in years to come. To their partners,their children,their grandchildren??

What memories will they share of their childhood?
Scary thought!!

I can imagine one of them trying to cajole THEIR child into their uniform for school against a protest of whinges and telling them to think themselves lucky as once their mum took them to school on inset day!

Or cooking dinner for their family recounting the time I made pie but forgot to put greaseproof paper under the baking beads resulting in a baking bead encrusted pie base….yum!!

Will our board game Friday’s get a mention??

The fact I make the best chilli known to man?!

Which days out will be remembered?

Which bits of birthday and Christmas traditions we have now will be passed on to take place in their own homes 20 years from now?

The thing is , as modern parents, there is so much pressure to be #makingmemories of us #livingourbestlife full of #preciousfamilytime and being oh so permanently #blessed . I’ve a feeling though that all our contrived memory making won’t quite pan out (annoyingly) It’ll be the little details ,the almost missed moments that are remembered and taken to heart by the little ones . The disasters and blooper reels of our family lives that are reminisced and laughed about.

There are probably events and memories that my parents would have expected to be high up in things to tell the kids about that I never have.

I barely remember any specific presents I got for Christmas (bar my Big Yellow Teapot – that was awesome!)What I do remember though is that on Christmas Day we used to pile into our parents bed and drink tea before going downstairs to open presents , my dad taking fairy steps to drive us nuts with anticipation.

I’ve no huge memories of days out but I do remember the day we all walked all the way to Hornsea (and back) my sister and I whining and wailing all the way home – I tell that story a lot! 

I don’t remember my poor mam cooking tea day in day out so much as I do my dad’s Sunday Dinner , on the table for us when we got in from our grandma’s ,eating it with the rugby on the radio in the background. 

Really I guess when we’re no longer around all we are are the stories other people tell about us . To me that feels quite powerful. 

To quote The Doctor (anywhere I can shoehorn in a Doctor Who reference the better but it’s actually apt here) 

“We’re all stories in the end .

Let’s make it a good one eh?”

My Facebook page is here

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The Pramshed

Not Just the 3 of Us

Rhyming with Wine


One Messy Mama


Mission Mindfulness