Friday, 27 May 2011

Getting arty and Save the Children

I am sure many of you are seeing lots of posts this week raising awareness for Save the Children, as am I and it is a hugely important subject. I often look at my 2 boys and realise how fortunate we are, how fortunate they are to live in a country where there is an endless supply of water, education, medical resources, and sanitation, in some respects they don't know they are born. 

The first post I read highlighting Save the Children's current compaign was over at Red Ted's Art, and here there is a chance to get your children to be arty at the same time as raising awareness and draw a self portrait.  I apologise to Red ted Art for blatently copying her words but they were so eloquently written and said everything needed to be said that I decided to copy them to here - hope you don't mind

In January Save the Children launched it’s most ambitious campaign to date, No Child Born to Die. Every year 8 million children under five die from illnesses we know how to treat or prevent, such as diarrhoea and pneumonia.

Save The Children is focusing on the provision of vaccinations and healthcare workers. In June there is a meeting in London hosted by David Cameron and attended by other world leaders. Save The Children aims to make as much noise as possible to ensure the funding shortfall for vaccinations (4.7 billion) is met by all the donor countries.
If this funding gap is met the vaccines that could then be provided would save the lives of millions of children.
This week 3 bloggers/ vloggers are going to Mozambique to follow the journey of a vaccine from the coldstore in the city right down to a rural community. They will write, make films and tweet about their experiences, the children and families they meet and the challenges of “cold” vaccinations in hot countries.
The bloggers going are diverse, Lindsay Atkin (@Liliesarelike) is a hugely popular YouTuber, Chris Mosler (@christinemosler) is an influential parenting blogger and Tracey Cheetham (@tchee) is a popular political blogger and recently elected councilor.

The Challenge from Red Ted Art

Today’s crafty challenge is designed to support their work – to spread the word about their No Child Born to Die campaign and to highlight the funding shortfall for vaccines.
We are lucky that our children have a future. They can dream about becoming policemen, doctors, teachers or artist. The children in Mozambique dream about survival…

So without further ado, self portrait number 1

He sees himself as a pirate with a parrot as his pet, and this pirate wears his school jumper!

And portrait number 2, Mini Man

Who sees himself in a stylish pink colour.

The challenge is listed below if you would like to take part, the more the merrier - I will tag 8 fellow bloggers as requested:

Deb from Aspie in the Family
BNM from BareNakedMummy
Bod for Tea
Lizbeth @ Four Sea Stars
Mummy Beadzoid
Gemma @ My Big Nutshell
Sarah @ People Don't Eat Enough Fudge
Looking For Blue Sky
So our challenge is simple:
1) Get your child to either draw or craft a self portrait of themselves now or in the future. Check out our self portrait on some tips to get the littlies interested! even a simple circle with dots and lines is sufficient for us!!!
3) Sign the Save the Children petition and then pass it onto your friends
4) Write a blog post about it as soon as possible, including info about Save the Children and the petition. We want as many people linked up AND signed up the petition by Sunday 29th May 2011
5) Tag 8 fellow blogger friends
6) Come back and link up your posts, so we can all share your craftiness
7) If you have time, visit each other posts and say hello!
I know we are not always fans of “Meme”s and Tags… but don’t forget – memes are a wonderful way to discover new and wonderful blogs. They are a wonderful way to help you build some links and to network with other bloggers… so go on, don’t knock them and take part!

Help please

Anyone got any ideas what is going on with my blogger.  I log in as normal and am able to view my blog, but if I try and reply to any comments or comment on anyone elses blog, it asks me first to choose a profile, so I choose google account, press publish comment, and it throws me back to log in screen, so I log in, the comment comes up and it asks me to complete the word verification step but at the top it shows the comment is written by annoymous, anyhow I do the word verification, press publish and again get thrown back to log in screen

Help Please, any ideas anyone?

Thanks in advance and hope

A very frustrated little blogger here who should be decorating the front room and not messing around on blogger!!

Wednesday, 25 May 2011

Problems with blogger????

Thanks to anyone who has posted comments on mu posts today, I have tried to respond and also tried to comment on other peoples blogs but for some reason each time I try it throws me back to the log in page and just hangs, so apologies, I am not being rude!

I assume this is a problem with blogger? or is it just me?

The Gallery - My Backyard

This is part of the garden on our new house  Behind the pond there is a patio area in from of the french doors, then to the left there is another part of the garden, slightly bigger than this with the greenhouse at the end of it and another patio/BBQ area.  To get to the left hand bit of garden you can either go down the path that runs along the back of the house from the patio area or cut through a passageway between trees which means you can run round the garden.  In the other half of the garden there is also a large apple tree and there is a 'secret' path that runs from the garden all along the back of the garden behind the apple tree which has a canopy over the top from the over hanging hedges and branches of the trees.  It comes out on the 2nd patio area by the greenhouse.  This garden is perfect for playing hide and seek or a good game of chase.

I have always wanted a beautiful garden that wasn't just a rectangle patch of grass.  When we found this house and had our offer accepted we couldn't believe our luck with the garden.  The boys love it, especially their secret path and hideouts they have found. In its time, it has obviously been a very well loved and well established garden and in time we hope to be able to bring it back to some of its former glory, although this is a learning curve for us and neither of us know alot about gardening! We are up for the challenge though.

Wordless Wednesday

Monday, 23 May 2011

Listography - top 5 albums

This week Kate Takes 5 listography is based around your top 5 albums, and I have found this surprisingly difficult.  I am one of those people who loves to listen to music but tends to stick the radio on, although now I have an i-touch and have been trying to run, I am getting more into them, but I was still surprised at how hard I found this to do.  I have decided to pick albums I have owned over the years that stick in my brain for various reasons, so here goes:

They Might Be Giants - Flood

They Might Be Giants became quite big in the early 1990s as an alternative American rock band.  Their third album was Flood which was probably so successful due to the song Birdhouse in your soul, which I loved and played over and over and over while I was supposedly revising for my A-Levels, so this album sticks in my mind for that reason.

Nirvana - Nevermind

This is suggesting I was a bit of a rock chick but my flatmate in my halls of residence was heavily into Nirvana and the album Nevermind featured heavily in our nights in, all chatting and drinking in the kitchen or someones room and brings back some very happy memories of my first year away from home.

The Beatles - The White Album

I think I will always love the Beatles for numerous reasons, and their first release album, a double album became known as The White Album due to the fact it was simply a white cover with their name in grey on it.

 My mum use to play them (and Bony M - Brown Girl in the Ring) when she was doing the housework when I was little, and then when I went off travelling, everywhere I went, someone seemed to be playing The Beatles, so again hearing any Beatles songs always conjours up really happy memories for me.

Oasis - (Whats the Story) Morning Glory?

I love, love , love this album. It reminds me of some of my time at university in Liverpool. Wonderwall was the first song my boyfriend (now husband) played to me and he played it all the time, I use to hear it sitting in lectures as one of our lecture theatres was over the canteen and every club and pub we went into Wonderwall, and Don't look back in anger were always playing.  My husband and I often think as Wonderwall as 'our song'.

Athlete - Tourist

This is an odd one as I am not 100% sure that I would say it was an album I love, but it holds a huge amount of meaning for me.  There is a song on there called Wires, which the lead singer wrote when his newborn baby was rushed to intensive care following a premature birth.  This was released around 2005 I think.  My first son was 9 weeks early and spent the first 6 weeks in intensive care/special care and he was a Christmas baby so the lyrics really hold meaning to me even though it was a year after his birth, especially the bits like 'The first night of your life, spent all alone', 'I see hope is here in a plastic box', 'I see Christmas lights reflected in your eyes' and 'looking at you now, you would never know'. They are all so relevant.  Thing is everytime I heard it, it use to make me stop and I always cried. My friend obviously didn't realise as she always played this album when I went round and then went to a festival in Hyde park where they were playing and rang me up so I could hear my 'favourite song'!  I have this album in the car at the moment, although I no longer cry when I hear it, but it does make me stop and think, and realise how lucky we are.

So if you fancy taking part, pop along to Kate Takes 5 and add your entries.

This is what its all about

Right now I am feeling like the luckiest person in the world.  This is only a quick post as we need to get out to nursery, but I normally work on a Monday, I have it as one of my office days and my mum and dad look after Mini Man until they drop him at nursery at 12.15. Today Dad had loads of work on and I know Mini Man does not give him a moments peace so I have been trying to work round him with him here with me.

I set up my stuff at the breakfast bar today so as to be downstairs with him, and for the last hour he has been laid on the kitchen floor brumming his cars up and down, crashing them and basically making lovely, boy game noises but not disturbing me. 

I have just looked up from the work and been sat watching him, and listening and it has made me realise that I am a very, very lucky person to be able to be classed as a working parent and also have my kids here with me.  This is the perfect office

PS. I am under no illusions that this is a bit of a one off, as they both normally do nothing but demand my attention if I try and work when they are here, but for now I am going to savour this rare occasion!

A slice of luxury

Yesterday I went for a hair cut. I use to have quite an addiction to having my hair cut and would religiously have it done every 6 weeks without fail.  Over the years, this habit has slipped as money became tighter with mortgages in place and car loans, and then kids came and my hair became a luxury. Often my brother would give me the money towards a decent haircut for my birthday (bless him), and in between it was a quick trim at a local, cheap hairdressers where blue rinses were top of the menu.

My last experience in a blue rinse establishment left me with a hair cut I can't even begin to describe which has taken me 18 months to grow out.  In that time I have visited 3 salons (expensive ones) and each time, they have all said they could only trim and neaten and to let it grow.

Finally it has reached a length where it can be done nicely - so I trotted round our new home town checking out all the hairdressers, seeing if any took my fancy. Now I grew up in this town but I have lived away for 19 years so alot has changed. I found one, booked in and visited yesterday. I think I can say that my addiction to having my hair cut may of been reignited!

It started with being sat down by a male hairdresser (always favoured a man cutting my hair so that was bonus number 1) and offered a complementary head and neck massage, I was asked how I would like it (gentle, medium, hard), I chose hard and it was lush, to say he was firm - actually that sounds so very wrong!, to say the massage was firm was an understatement, just how I like them. I then got a 'consultation' about what to do with my hair, and then a hair wash.

I have never in my life had a hair wash like it. The chair was leather (or fake leather) but very comfy, they put a neck rest on me so I didn't feel like I was about to be interrogated by some alien species, and then they reclined me.  Normally those hair washing basins kill my neck. My feel automatically went up in the air with a foot thingy, and then the chair started vibrating, yes vibrating.  There I am being given an Indian head massage while he washes my hair, and my seat is pulsating and vibrating. I couldn't stop laughing but it was very relaxing! Then I got taken to another set of chairs in a dimly lit part of the room with candles and offered another complementary head and neck massage. By this time I was very relaxed and really enjoying myself!!

Move forward, I got a lovely haircut, much neater than it was, much sleeker, and I am a happy bunny, and all for what I consider a good price of £33.00, or maybe I am stuck on southern prices where I had to pay £45-£48 for a decent cut in a good salon. And I had 1 hour and 30 minutes of pure me time, someone spoiling me, reding mags, drinking coffee and being made to feel and look good, ahh bliss.

I will definitely be going there again and do confess to already having booked my next appointment for 6 weeks time, opps!

Fridge Me

I recently found Mum's Mutterings blog and thought this link up was a brilliant idea and wondered why no one else had taken part.

Mum's Mutterings likes a good trashy magazine and one of her favourite features is... 'What is in celerity X's fridge'. She love's a good fridge nosey.

I have to say I do always look at this feature but I think I am too cynical and spend my time reading the list thinking yeah right as if you have chocolate puddings and steak in your fridge, you are a size 4!  However, I do admit I get quite excited if I am in someones house and they ask me to get the milk out of the fridge or biscuits from a cupboard as I do like to know what others eat! I also love looking at what is in other people's shopping trolley's, maybe I am a little wierd?

Anyhow I digress.  Mum's Mutterings decided to start Whats in the bloggers fridge and very kindly showed us a photo of hers, and I really liked the idea, so even if I am the only one who plays along - (see someone does read your blog!) and even if no-one else is interesteed who reads my blog, here is my fridge

Whats in the bloggers fridge presents........
Now it would take me ages to list the exact contents of my fridge.  Firstly I feel quite smug I found this post today as I have just been shopping and secondly my cupboards are the same, friends often ask me if I am expecting a disaster to occur as I stock up on so much, in brief though this is it

Pesto (2 kinds)
Lazy garlic, chillis and ginger
Variety of pickles
Apple sauce
Mustard (2 kinds)
3 x salad dressings
Heinz garlic mayo
Normal Mayo
Kids yoghurt drinks
Sausage for sandwiches
Mini peperoni's
Sausgae rolls
Snack pots of humous
Mini caramel bites (t'hubands)
Another tub of coleslaw (got a bit coleslaw merry in the supermarket)
More kids yoghurt drinks
lettuce, cucumber, toms, peppers, olives spring onions
Carrots, brocoli, mushrooms, green beans, sugar snap peas, corn on the cob
semi skinned milk
Strawberry and banana smoothie
1 x Bud
Nearly drunk bottle of White zinderfel rose wine
salad cream

and probably quite a bit more.

Having read that list, I do believe I am a master ar fridge packing! If you fancy a bit of fun and taking part, pop over to Mum's Mutterings.

Thursday, 19 May 2011

Reasons to be cheerful 1, 2 ,3 ........

This week I have felt really contented, really happy and contented which I haven't felt for a long time and I don't know why.  Nothing has changed really, we've not really done anything different but I just feel really contented so that in itself is a reason to be cheerful, but I am going to list a few things I have really enjoyed this week.
  1. I got a very warm fuzzy feeling when my Little Man walked into the playground the other morning and for the first time ever in his 3 years at school (4 years if you include nursery) was standing in a group of children holding a conversation and comparing backugans (or whatever they are called), they could of been comparing stones for all I cared, its the best social interaction I have ever seen and I wanted to whip my phone out and video it. Then to cap off my warm fuzzy feeling this week I have noticed not 1, not 2 but many children saying hello and goodbye to Little Man and he has actually responded in the appropriate manner and even called 2 by their name! it is not just a step forward for us, it is a leap into the unknown.  A very happy, proud mummy.
  2. I was coerced into becoming treasurer for the school PTA on Monday.  Now I know I was thinking of enquiring about it and asked one of the other mum's if she knew what the role involved, but I had actually decided I might not have the time to commit to it. She however mentioned me to the PTA and I was surrounded in the playground and 15 minutes later was stood thinking 'uh oh, I am now treasurer'. I am concerned as working for myself if work drops in it will take priority and I hate letting people down. However, I am also secretly excited as I could do with a new injection of people to meet and something to get my teeth into. Now that I work from home, i don't really get the social contact I would like so I am looking forwards to it.
  3. I was phoned at the beginning of the week by a new company asking about my availability for reporting a meeting in Copenhagen next week.  Today I found out it hasn;t been approved by the client so I am not getting the work BUT this is a new company and they said they were very impressed with the questions I asked about the work, my quote for doing it, the way I made myself so available and that they will definitely put me to the top of their freelancer list for future projects, so I feel pretty good.  just sending my CV out does seem to be generating leads and work.
  4. I am having my hair cut tomorrow for the first time in about a year.  I had the worst cut of my life about 18 months ago which has taken this long to grow out and I am really excited. If there is one thing I love, it is having my hair cut. I love someone playing with it, washing it, cutting it, drying it and making me feel good.  it use to be my one luxury.  How the hell as a student did I ever manage to afford to travel home on the train over 80 miles every 2 months just to go to my favourite hairdresser who even back then (hem 15 years ago now) was 35 quid for a hair cut?
  5. On Saturday 14th of May I walked the London Moonwalk in aid of Breast Cancer research in 7 hours. it is a power walk marathon and I am really proud of myself and friend for doing it. I did it last year as well.  This year we raised just over £1000.00 between 2 of us which I think is brilliant.  Ia m blown away by peoples kindness.
If you want to share your reasons to be cheerful, pop over to Mummy from the heart and join in the link, its a great way to either share your cheer or feel better about what you thought was a rubbish week.

Tuesday, 17 May 2011

Little Man Part 1

One of my reasons for starting this blog is to talk about living with a child with additional needs, not only from a family perspective but also from a constant battle with the authorities perspective in order to get any form of recognition or help.  Through reading other people's blogs, I have picked up so many useful tips and found brilliant contacts and hope that someone may benefit from our journey as well. 

I think it is is easier to start at the beginning with where it all began for us which was over 7 years ago now, rather than jumping in, in the middle. So much has happened over the last 7 year which we have learnt a great deal from, and there is still so much more to come, I am in no doubt about that!

Little Man was born at 31 weeks weighing in at 2lb 9oz after pre-enclampsia and placental abruption. The pre-enclampsia only became apparent 5 days before his birth when I had a routine appointment and they decided the baby was too small and then noticed my blood pressure was through the roof, but I had no symptoms.  After a couple of nights in hospital they decided I was borderline PE and I was sent home for daily monitoring, Less than 48 hours later I was haemorrhaging and rushed back in.

His birth was not the relaxed, water birth, no pain relief scenario I had imagined myself capable of. Instead my memories are arriving in an ambulance, not knowing where t'husband was who had been told to follow in the car but they failed to tell him which hospital, luckily he guessed right, hearing mummers of 'we can't find a heartbeat', 'I might of found a very faint one' then Lets go and moving rapidly backwards down a corridor being stripped on route, corridor lights flashing overhead, husband who had just arrived stood looking very lost in the doorway, waving to me and strangely enough a very vivid memory of a little chinese nurse running along at the side of me, wielding a turquoise blue razor telling me once we stopped she was going to shave me. Least of my concerns to tell you the truth my dear!

Anyhow, Little Man was safely air lifted out of the sunroof, whipped away to SCBU and ventilated.  Daddy got to see him after a couple of hours, our tiny little man, I got taken up on my bed when he was about 6 hours old and was allowed to stick my hand in the incubator and stroke him. He looked like a little alien, he was bright red, very thin, transparent looking skin, and his head was too big for his body, but he was perfect. It didn't matter he had no bum, just a little hole, or that he was tiny, he was ours.

The next 6 weeks were spent in SCBU and in the grand scheme of things we had a very easy journey. The best Christmas present we got was our first cuddle for 5 minutes on Christmas day when he was nearly 3 days old. He needed oxygen until he was 4 weeks old, fed well, no infections and no scares thank god, other than 3 minor brain bleeds detected at birth which were reabsorbed by 6 months old. 2 weeks after coming home he went floppy, wouldn't feed and ended up on our local children's ward. He was a very poorly baby and as our local hospitals SCBU had been shut down, they didn't have small enough equipment to deal with him. It was here I heard his first cry of pain. They were trying to get lines into him but his veins were too small and their paediatric needles too big, it was heartbreaking to watch. There was a young nurse stood at his head giving him cardiac massage and bagging him to keep him going. The doctor who worked on Little Man that night will forever be my hero, I don't doubt that he saved my little boys life. Early hours of the morning a specialist transfer team arrived from Great Ormond Street and he was ventilated and transferred to their intensive care unit.

I was allowed in the back of the ambulance with him and when we arrived a male nurse called Tom meet us, showed me the parents room and explained what was happening. Once Little Man was settled, i was allowed to see him and then shown across the road to a house where I could stay. This was a Ronald MacDonald house and I think up to this point I hadn't really known what those change boxes by the side of MacDonald's tills were really for.

We were told our 8 week old Little Man (still -1 week gestation) had a nasty virus called RSV, double pneumonia and suspected meningitis but they felt he was too ill to confirm this with a lumbar puncture so were just treating it. It never once crossed our minds he would not be OK. We were told he would probably need to come home on oxygen, that he would have countless re-admissions for chest problems in his early years and possibly lung damage. A week later our Little Man decided he had had enough of their predictions, decided to go it alone without the ventilator, didn't want oxygen and came home to our local hospital a few days later and after 48 hours we were discharged. No oxygen, no apparent problems. He is now 7 and has never had one chest infection since!

At 16 weeks old, he decided to give us another scare and we ended up being blue lighted to Great Ormond Street again for emergency surgery on a strangulated hernia. 5 days later we were back home and we have never looked back with him healthwise.

He walked at a year old, talked earlier than most and met all his milestone at his actual age rather than adjusted. By a year old though he was biting, and nothing we said or did seemed to get through to him that this was not acceptable. The biting soon went to pinching, then kicking, hair pulling, you name it he has had it in his repertoire at some point. At a year old he stopped sleeping - literally, he would sleep until about midnight and then it was game over. I lost count of the number of nights I woke up propped up against his door having fallen asleep there.

By the age of two, I was at my wits end. I dreaded going out as I knew if another child started crying Little Man would be responsible. I started to isolate us to some extent as a result. Little Man never walked anywhere either, he ran and ran and ran and never, ever ran out of steam. Sleeping was still a huge issue, and even sedatives from the consultant had no effect. One friend described our son as the Duracell bunny and it was very true. He climbed anything possible, had no fear and never seemed to learn from his mistakes. Discipline remained impossible with nothing having any effect. In short out little man was a terror and it was heartbreaking. We didnt know what to do, doubted our parenting skills, and wonder constantly where we were going wrong. This is where our first experience with the authorities started!

Monday, 16 May 2011

Frock it - take 2

OK, I have just taken part in Frock it for the first time over at The Mid 30's Life and managed to do it wrong, I entered last weeks instead of this weeks (durrh) and I couldn't just re-paste my link as this week there is a theme typical, so I am trying again, and hope to do it right this time.

My second entry comes from Cannes (as requested) and is the following dress:

I don't think I like this one, I love the colour and think it looks great with her skin tone and hair but as for the leather look and the feather/flower things on the sleeve, nope it just doesn't work for me.  I am also in awe of how she is managing to do the backwards, side glance without the feathery stuff making her sneeze!

Frock it!

I have recently come across a link called Frock it over at This Mid 30's Life and I really like it although I have not taken part in it before.  I really couldn't pass up the opportunity this week though after the British soap awards and I am not even sure who to pick to make my list as there were loads of, well dodgy I think is the best word, dresses on show for all to see, so its been hard to pick one, but here is a dress that I really, really couldn't see myself in.

 Now for me I don't think this does very much for Shobna Gulati, the pink shoes kind of clash with the sick green/yellow bodice and the feathers make her look like she has a very overgrown lady garden!

Sorry just not my kind of dress, I am also not that taken with the massive shoulder pads on her jacket, the jacket kind of makes her look all scrunched up with little neck.

Not for me this one, however, there were loads of other dresses that made me wonder what they were thinking, the Sugarbabes all looked like they were about to go to tea with the Adam's family!  I'll stop there otherwise I will go off on a rant, sorry!

Listography - products you couldnt do without

Over at Kate Takes Five there is a fab link which is all about lists which is right up my street as I am the type of person to have a list for a list. I love lists, without a list I am lost.

This weeks listography is the top 5 products you couldn't love without, which at first had me thinking, god I don't know, but once I did start thinking of them it was then difficult to narrow it down to only 5. I have written this before reading any other entries as well, as I didn't want to have to then add more to my list as I hadn't thought of them as well.

So here is my list:

  1. Babywipes - I use them for everything, they are great for wiping faces, keeping in the car, cleaning up spills, tomato ketcup off the carpet, oil off hands, dirt, dusting, decorating wipes, EVERYTHING! Bit worrying that they are so good at removing so much dirt and grime when they are meant to be gentle on a baby's bum!
  2. Phone - my mobile is my life, it contains my diary, all contact details, my lists, and of course easy access to the internet/facebook. I put all events in it and it beeps at me almost daily to remind me to get up (no joke), which day is swimming for the kids, opticians, dentists, library day at school etc, I am useless and my husband often comments he is amazed I am can remember my own name! Hoe rude!
  3. Coffee and to a lesser extent tea - until I had Little Man coffee was the devils drink, but after he decided sleep was for the weak and I was also working, the coffee machine which produced evil tasting tea became my new best friend and I soon got the taste for coffee, which has over the years developed into an addiction. My day now starts with a cup of tea (I am not even capable of speaking/functioning) without it, and then I have a cup of coffee before even leaving the house. I do find coffee gives me that perk up I often need if I am tired, whereas tea doesn't have the same effect,
  4. Contact lenses - I am blind, literally, my sight is so bad I qualify for free eye tests, and I hate wearing glasses. One day I dream of having that operation where they replace the lens in your eye and then contact lenses would be a thing of the past, but I think it would cost about £6000. I have been told laser eye surgery would be a waste of money as my sight is too bad :( so needless to say my contact lenses are essential. 
  5. Alcohol - Obviously if I had to I would live without this but would I want to, that is the question! which is why is comes last but I do enjoy a glass of wine in the evening once the kids are in bed, however on a bad day it does seem an essential ingredient!
If you want to take part then pop over to Kate's blog

Saturday, 14 May 2011

Reasons to be cheerful

Last week I made a bit of a mistake with my reasons to be cheerful and forgot to link them back to Michelle's blog, so sorry about that, and here is the proper link to Mummy from the heart this week!

This week I have not really had to think about reasons to be cheerful, it has been a great week, so here goes:
  1. Little Man who was very much an outsider at his old school and left out of things has this week been voted by his classmates as the one they would like to be on the school council! We are so chuffed and really proud of him.
  2. I have been asked to attend another conference in June and report the proceedings.  It is a 3 day conference in London so although I will have to spend the time away from home, I know that with those 3 days and the work it generates afterwards if nothing else drops in for June workwise we will be OK. Plus it means the first conference I did last month for this same company was obviously OK.
  3. Saturday night I am power walking a 26 mile marathon around London in my bra alongside 15,000 other women and men to raise money for Breast Cancer research, and I am really looking forwards to it.  I walked it last year in just under 7 hours and got such a sense of achievement, so I  am really looking forwards to this year as well.
  4. I bumped into an old friend from our old town, in our new town out of the blue the other day. She was here visiting and it was great going for a coffee and catching up. Best of all she was in town for an Extreme Stunt show which her boyfriend takes part in and they are touring the country.  We had planned to take the boys to see it but as the mother in law was visiting that day had missed it.  The show is going to be in Leeds on Sunday and she has given us guest tickets for free and backstage passes so the boys can go and sit in the Monster trucks and have a good look around them all.  To say they are excited is an understatement!
  5. Although this doesn't sound like a reason to be cheerful, I can make it one. it appears there is a leak in our downstairs toilet under the sink and it is getting worse.  It seems to be coming from under the pedestal bit of the sink so not something we can easily rectify. This does make me cheerful as the whole room desperately needs doing but with quotes of £1000 to do the work (we want it double skinning as it has originally been an old outhouse building made into an extension so the walls are only 1 brick thick, ceiling covering, boiler being housed in a cupboard, radiator put in, new toilet and sink and floor done), it has been on the end of the job list.  However, we might just have to get it done now which I am secretly very pleased about!!
If you have had a really good week and want to share it,or if you need a boost to realise perhaps the week hadn't been as bad as you thought take part in this great link by clicking here.

Wednesday, 11 May 2011

My poor insulted nose

I have huge problems with my nose, its not so big that it disrupts my field of vision or small bugs and flies see it as an instant fun fair slide or anything like that, but more so with the whole breathing through your nose.

After years and years of being fobbed off by various doctors that it was sinus related, or a form of hayfever or some kind of allergy and trying every nasal spray on the market and decongestant known to man, I was eventually sent to see an ENT specialist back in August.  Within 5 minutes of me describing my symptoms, he knew what was wrong - it has only taken 30 odd years to get here (not that I am bitter).  One simple CT scan later confirmed that the septum speerating both sinuses at the top of my nose has collasped and not through snorting drugs either I hasten to add like Danielle Westbrook! I was probably born with it like that but it has worsened over the years.

Anyhow, they can correct it with surgery which was cleverly scheduled for the week before we moved 200 miles up the country.  The recovery period is about 2 weeks and as the Big Man was not allowed the time off work to move (dont even go there), I had to co-ordinate the whole thing with 2 small children by myself, and having my mum down to help me convalesce would of probably seen me being admitted to the local psych unit, as much as I love my mum, not good in a stressful situation! So needless to say I cancelled the op.

Since this move though I keep getting random nose bleeds especially when I bend over to tie my shoes up, not bad ones but enough to have me worried, so I mentioned it last time I was at the doctors and she said a quick appointment with ENT at the hospital would probably solve the problem. What a liar!!

Yesterday I happily went to see this ENT man, who proceeded to try and shove a camera up my nose which saw me slowly rising backwards up the chair, he commented on there being a blockage and when I explained about my septum his solution was to get me to sniff back a load of local anasethitic.  After 15 minutes I was choking and heaving as the back of my throat also went numb so it felt like I couldnt swallow, and each time I breathed through my mouth it set me off - it was a horrible experience.  To add insult to injury I could still feel the camera being shoved through my nose.

The outcome - 'I can't really see anything to explain your nosebleeds so I have put some chemicals up there to cortirise your nose and come back and see me if it happens again'

For the rest of yesterday and all of today I feel like someone has got my nose and all the useful bits behind it and put them through a mangle. It hurts to sniff, to breath, sneezing - well dont even go there, I can't touch it and it is still bunged up.  As a result I am swaying towards living with my horrendous snoring, after all it doesnt disturb me, and I am very use to not allowing myself to fall asleep in public, and bunged up nose, do I really want a major operation on it when a simple investigation and cortirisation has left me feeling very sorry for myself and in quite a bit of pain.

Tuesday, 10 May 2011

Puzzled? Help please

OK so I am the first to admit that I am not the sharpest tool in the box, but this has me really puzzled and if anyone can help then please do!

On my dashboard it tells me how many followers I have, and this has gone up to 8 today (woo hoo!), however when I click followers to see who they are, it only shows me 7 - why?

Does this mean someone is following my blog who doesn't want me to know who they are?

I don't know if I like that idea!

I hope it isn't someone I know, I would like to think my privacy is respected!!

Or is Blogger just having an off day and for some reason isn't updating it even though I have tried logging in and out a couple of times over the past few hours.

If anyone has any ideas, please do let me know

Monday, 9 May 2011

To PTFA or not, that is the question

Little Man is classed as special needs due to his ADHD and the fact he is really struggling with reading and writing probably due to the fact his concentration span which has been assessed as less than 5 minutes. There is also a question mark over his short term memory which they are finding difficult to assess due to his concentration span so a bit of a vicious circle really.

Anyhow Little Man is only 7, and has the first set of SATs looming in the next few weeks, however from what I have been told, they are maybe not expecting Little Man to take them.  The educational psychologist came in on Friday and she was really good, I have to say I was very impressed and the meeting will merit a post of its own, however I have to say I am in a dilemma at the moment how to go about this. I feel I should start at the beginning of our journey rather than plunge in, in the middle with loads of stuff about Little Man. 

Anyhow small wavering off the path there. I did ask this ed pyshc about senior schools for Little Man as she told me she was actually only covering at the moment and didn't know if she would follow Little Man through which will be a crying shame but we can't have everything can we?

It seems the best school in the town for special needs is the best school in town overall and the one people fight to get into and actually sell and move house to get into.  People really do go to extremes for it. It has made it into the top 100 or it might even be 10 schools in the country listed in the Telegraph and also happens to be my old senior school.  The downside is actually getting a place as everyone wants their child there.  It is a church school, CofE and we are Catholics. Yes I did go there but it was pure luck myself and my brother got in, and we were always told to keep our religion quiet. In the 6th form, the Catholic school which is within about 100 yards merges with the CofE school which caused alot of confused faces for those who knew me thorugh confirmation lessons etc. Infact my oldest friend who I have known since I was 3 was vivibly confused when she came to the wedding rehersal as my bridesmaid and couldnt work out why I was in the Catholic chapel!

So in order to stand a chance of getting into this school the ed pysch said we needed to be regular church goers - not a problem as we are.  The boys were at the local catholic primary school in our last town and only aren't there now as there was no space in our new town. It apparently doesn't matter that we are catholics as it is all about being a christian which is good.  We need to show we have always gone to church rather than just for the year leading up to senior school which again is not an issue.  We luckily live within the catchment area, and the ed pysch also said admission was on a points system, so they liked things like voluntary work, being members of things like the round table or town related things etc.

I am thinking that becoming a member of the school PTA or PTFA as they call themselves can only serve to help this cause, and even before this conversation I was toying with the idea.  I could do with something other than being consumed by trying to find myself work, and the kids. it would get me out, make me socialise and meet other people and I do need that.  Today the school news letter mentioned there is a need for a new treasurer and vice-treasurer and I am debating applying.  Now maths and me are not a good combination, I scrapped a C in GCSE maths with the skin of my teeth and alot of tuition from a friendly neighbour who had a degree in Further Maths.  However, i do budget all our household accounts.  I am now responsible for all my own earnings, tax, NI etc and it surely can not be that hard.  I think my main concern though is time. I would hate to let them down and miss meetings but if I get asked to cover a conference or go to an external meeting for my business that would have to take priority.

Humm decisions, decisions. Writing this in fact, has made me think that I will apply for it, if its not meant to be then I wont get it, simple as that!

Bean bags of fun

I often realise that I have forgotten the simple art of play, the enjoyment of charging around, making a fool of yourself and not giving a care.  I always seem to have something better to do, like housework or emailing and phoning and trying to drum up more business and work, and the poor kids get left to play alone. As I am here most of the time, it is always big bad mummy ruining their fab game of sliding down the banisters, bashing each other senseless in front of the TV with cushions or bouncing off the french doors because they think the sound is funny.

The Big Man is great and in typical male fashion seems to avoid the everyday household jobs thinking that the housework fairy is real. He gets in from work and most nights upon his arrival chaos arrives as well.  But I am not complaining as I cook tea revealing in the sounds of uncontrollable giggling and shrieks eminating from the front room as The Big Man rolls around on the floor with them tickling, play fighting and generally having fun.

I think as a mum it is easy to forget how to have fun and as such I have been trying to find those simple 15 minutes for a game of hide and seek, football in the garden, chase etc more often.

Yesterday it was raining and the boys were going stir crazy.  I told them to go off and find something to do. Their idea of something to do was charging round the house like loons, which was swiftly followed by very loud thudding down the stairs and much hilarity.  My first instinct was to march to the bottom of the stairs and tell them off, but on rounding the corner 2 things happened - I realised they were simply bored and having fun and actually remembered driving my own mum crazy doing a similar thing and number two, Boy 1 and Boy 2 both stopped dead in their tracks and managed to look both crest fallen and guilty at the same time.  So I marched to the top of the stairs, grabbed the over sized bean bag Boy 1 was unsuccessfully trying to hide behind his bag, dumped it on the top step, jumped on and whooped my way down the stairs, which incidently really hurt my arse despite the natural padding it has!

Both boys initially looked at me in amazement and shock and then screamed with laughter and the end of my slide was finished with 'go mum, go mum, you're so cool mum'. I joined in with them for another few rounds, and we timed each other to see who did it the fastest, and then I called a stop to the game and suggested a wet walk instead, plus by poor bum couldn't take any more of a beating!

I just thougt if you can't beat them, join them and in the process we had great fun, I was 'cool' and it was alot more effective than doing my rather good fish wife impression, which has no impact on either of them.

Saturday, 7 May 2011

Reasons to be cheerful

I think this is a great idea, a good reflection on the week.

My reasons to be cheerful include:
  1. I have a new blog - this one and I want to make it a good one and really enjoy doing it
  2. The weather - it has been brilliant and has meant a load of outdoor activity for me, Big Man (t'husband), Little Man and Mini Man which has included walking, rivers, animals, grass track racing, remote control buggies, paddling pools and loads more. Long may it last (although the rain we had last night and dull day today doesn't bode well but I live in hope).
  3. I am trying to establish myself as a freelance medical writer and have just invoiced for April and it turned out to be a pretty healthy month and has given me a real confidence boost that perhaps I can do it. Plus, the conference I attended at the start of April, I had to write a report for and the company I did it for are really happy with it :D
  4. Its the weekend and time to do more things with the boys, what more can i say
  5. In 2 weeks time it is the holidays again!
I think that's it until next week

The First One

This is a new blog. Its not my first so I cannot claim to be a blogging virgin. My very first blog lasted a year and I was enjoying it and was quite proud to have gained 51 followers, but for me my blogging is an intensely private thing and one of the first things I have not shared with my husband. Why, I am not entirely sure but I guess its like there are only certain things you would share with your closest friend.  Sometimes I just need a good old fashioned moan about life in general and that sometimes involves the big man - otherwise known as t'husband and things can be mis-read and mis-understood.  I think he found out about my first blog, so I stopped blogging and moved it to a new one.

Was that this one - umm, no, it was another one which was very much in its infancy, and tonight I am so mad at myself as I left my laptop on and my gmail account open and my work email, and when I went to shut it down, I noticed that there were 3 emails regarding my April invoice that had been opened in my work email, and on questioning t'husband admitted he had looked at them when putting the kids to bed, as he had been interested.  I think I am a bit miffed about this, but am not sure if I am over reacting a little. We have never kept secrets and me keeping this blog from him is a new thing for us, I feel like it is a secret but I kind of feel I need that as well. On the money front, if he asks I tell him how much I have earned for the month or what the running total is, however this month has been a particularly good one and my husband is a very materialistic chap and seems to think if there is money there, then we should spend it and on gadgets and this has been a bit of a bone of contension recently. As a result I have had enough and had decided to try and keep April's money to myself in the hope we could put some of it away in our joint savings and actually save.  At the end of the day I am working for myself now and need to be wise and think not all months will be as good.

Anyhow I digress, t'husband admitted to looking at my works email which makes me think he also looked at what was open on the internet which was my gmail account so he would of possibly accessed my blog, and so for the third and last time I am moving it.  If this one goes wrong, then I think I give up!

So here it is, I am back once again now as The Rambling Pages. I was Superlittle mne, actually that should end with men but I darnt write the whole name as t'husband told me if he knew the name of a blogger then surely he could google it and find the blog and I suspect he is right.  I then moved SLM to Moonwalkingm again last word of that should be mum but as t'husband is a savvy IT geek, he might of made a note of this name as well.  Here ends my first post!