Tuesday, 6 March 2012

Is there anybody out there?

Today's a bit of a watershed for me and my chauffeur duties on the school run. For this afternoon, my two kids, aged 10 and 8 are soooo excited to be getting the school bus home, at least. They both have friends who take the same bus too so I suspect this is part of their fun. There are no morning spaces so for the time being, I can still feel connected to their school life, well until the start of the next academic year. Does anyone else feel a sense of abandonment? 
Practically, it makes total sense. It's environmentally friendly, cheaper with the ever increasing cost of diesel and frees up my time. From their point of view, I know, logically, it's their growing need for independence.  I came across this quote on Twitter a few weeks ago which sums it up :
"Love your children reliably and they'll gracefully outgrow you. Ignore them and they'll be obsessed with you for life.”
Their independence is the price we pay for doing our job well. Yet, with every little step they take in a bid for more "freedom", there's an equal number of little "pings" on the heart strings.

I've imagined this for a while, yet in this vision, I thought I'd feel much more euphoric at not having to do the hour's drive. This will free up 3 more hours this week but as of next August, with both journeys taken care of, I'll gain 10 hours a week. Goodness what am I ging to do with this time? Keep shtum, as soon as anyone knows, especially OH, I'll be presented with a list of "to do's", no doubt.
For today, at least, I suspect for that hour, I'll watch the clock and wait for them to return safely, in one piece... oh and eat too many biscuits and catch up on Twitterville!

Monday, 5 March 2012

#MARCHphotoaday 3, 4, 5

Spring has spring, the grass has riz and I've just been rubbish at this!

What a poor start. 2 days in and already falling behind... tsk, tsk. As I said in February, must try harder.

So, according to #Fatmumslim's challenge list, to be found here, I've got to produce photos of my neighbourhood, bedside and a smile for the 3rd, 4th and 5th days of this sunny month of March respectively.

The neighbourhood photo wasn't taken by me and wasn't taken on 3rd either. However, if this part of Scotland was this sunny a lot more of the time, we'd be a whole lot happier. Just love the abundance of the most gorgeous cherry blossom. It looks so pretty. Hope you enjoy!

Again, another "cheat" I feel. 4th: Bedside. My bedside cabinet is covered in tea stains and piled high with magazines "I must get back to" and books I never finish. So this photo is taken from Hotel du Vin. I was thoroughly spoiled for a big birthday at their hotel in Poole. It was lovely. Crisp. Pristine. Over looking the harbour... OH happy drooling over the yachts. I was just happy chilling, no kids, no clutter, all too briefly, in the roll top bath.

"A smile" was the challenge for the following day. Now, I don't know about anyone else's dog but our border collie smiles. When you've been away for a wee while, he'll come up and give you a kind of one sided smile. Unfortunately, he won't do it to order for the camera so I'm sharing this one instead.

Thursday, 1 March 2012

#MARCHphotoaday Up!

Movies in our house are, more often than not, enjoyed on DVD. I would loooove a home cinema system that involved a projector and retractable screen. 

Well, my earlier blog "Let's go to the movies" relates my thoughts about the cost of taking the family to enjoy a film on the "big screen". It's just not possible for every film, we'd all like to see.

Today's #Marchphotoaday challenge (set by #fatmumslim) allows me to pay credit to Pixar and their masterpiece that is "Up". If you haven't seen it, I suggest you do if you like a heartwarming, humourous tale of love, life and adventure seen through characters, Carl, Ellie and Russell at either end of the age scale. 

Casting, Ed Asner ensures we hear him loud and clear as an elderly gent who is missing his wife, Eliie. They shared a life lived to the fullest with tinges of sadness (depicted in a lovely, touching series of animated story telling) and then the aching void he feels when Ellie, sadly passes away. They bonded over the formation of their advernture club and pursued their life together, onwards and as it turns out, upwards.

Wednesday, 29 February 2012

#MARCHphotoday begins!

Well, Spring is almost here which really only means it'll be lighter as it rains :-)

So, turned out it was harder than it first appeared to keep up with #fatmumslim's FEBphotoaday challenge. Half term kind of threw a spanner into the works. So, onwards into March and I'll try to try harder.

Here's the list from #fatmumslim's blog which you can also find here.

Happy snapping :-)

#FEBphotoaday Challenge 29th

"Something you're listening to" is today's #Febphotoaday challenge set by blogger #fatmumslim. (Catch her blogging at http://www.fatmumslim.com.au/).

Technically, I'm listening to my dog snore her little head off. It's such a hard life :-) So, instead I'll show a photo for the Oscar winning "Am I a Man or a Muppet?" song taken from the latest Muppet Movie. (I heard it on the school run this morning). You can catch the video on You Tube here.
Unfortunately, I haven't seen the film yet (you can read my thoughts about cinema prices on an earlier blog here ). I just looooove the Muppets. I wish they could bring back the show to Sunday evenings but then it would become "Muppets Dancing on Ice". There's an idea ....

Music can take you to a specific time, place, emotion or memory quicker than a blink of an eye if you let it. Not to be morbid, I often find myself thinking about the music I'd like to be played at my funeral. 

Let me explain. My friend's MIL passed away and they didn't particularly see eye-to-eye and when walking through the doors of the crematorium to "Super Trouper" by Abba, I laughed, rather inappropriately. I thought, "hell's bell's my friend is taking the "p" and having the proverbial last laugh". However, it turns out, the MIL was a huge ABBA fan (phewwwww).

A couple of years ago, I had to put together the "playlist" for my own mum's funeral. So, if you've read my earlier post here, you'll understand that we didn't have the strongest relationship and it definitely had it's ups and downs. Anyway, I first thought what an opportunity and I certainly didn't count on it being the emotional roller coaster that it turned out to be. My brother did offer but no, "no problem", I said. Turns out she didn't have much in the way of a collection to choose from. Her friends had long since evaporated into thin air (funny how being terminally ill will do that to people). So I set about trying to think about the times she was happiest.

I chose some 70's classics (she wasn'r religious so hymns were not an option):
99 Miles from L.A. (Johnny Mathis) You Tube Clip
Don't It Make Your Brown Eyes Blue (Crystal Gayle) You Tube Clip
Only Love (Nana Mouskouri) You Tube Clip
The Way We Were (Barbra Streisand) You Tube Clip
Just When I Needed You Most (Smokie)
Too Much, Too Little, Too Late (Johnny Mathis) Top of the Pops 1978 Clip
Hasta Manana (Abba) You Tube Clip

Which still leaves me thinking of my own "playlist" becasuse I'm not convinced I want ABBA played at my departure...

Tuesday, 28 February 2012

#FEBphotoaday Challenge 28th

28th Money - Surely worth more than the Euro now?
I'm thinking that "Monopoly" money ought to be gaining in value given the recession and crisis in the Eurozone. Most of us probably have at least one the house somewhere. Bank of England doesn't need to issue any more £Sterling. Just let us spend our Monopoly £000's. Bingo! Problem sorted.

If only, it was that easy. Given the long, dark, cold winters and the cost of entertaining children is going through the roof. (Captive market, isn't it, desperate parents on a soggy Sunday afternoon? ) Leads me to ask, what's your favourite board game?

My children seem to be going through a phase of the oldie but goody. Likes of "Battleships". "Connect 4". "Frustration". My OH's desert island game would be "Monopoly" although he would say that cos he wins. Every. Single. Time. Which kind of takes the fun out of it. I'm sure he makes his own rules as he goes or maybe I'm just a bad loser (moi?)! We even bought the new "Revolution" version which, to be fair, the kids enjoy but not so much the "grown-ups". Something not right, when you start the game with a credit card loaded with £millions to acquire your property portfolio.

"Monopoly" became one of my mum's favourites to collect on our behalf. We have various editions including two "Star Wars" limited editions. One is wrapped up for posterity and one is played with quite a bit (we get a lot of rainy Sundays). 

If a more reflective game is your cup of tea, then why not try the "Transformation Game"? The game can be found here at Amazon http://www.amazon.co.uk/Transformation-Game-Kathy-Tyler/dp/0880793805/ref=sr_1_sc_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1330423609&sr=8-1-spell. It was developed by a couple fo ladies at the Findhorn Foundation in Scotland. (More about whom you can find out about here http://www.findhorn.org/). In short, it's a game that asks you to think consciously about your life in all aspects: Physical, Emotional, Mental and Spiritual.

 On a whole other level, if you have a rainy afternoon to yourselves without 101 other things to think about and do, why not try the board game "Monogamy"? Sometimes, it's good just to have a laugh "a deux". For adults only, it's suggestive, flirtatious fun.

Monday, 27 February 2012

#FEBphotoaday Challenge 27th

A new week. Another Monday. Another day of sodding rain. You know what? Scotland is truely "God's" country when it's sunny but he/ she must really be hacked off with us to only grant us one day a year of glorious sun, usually between May and September.

Anyway, today's challenge is "something you ate". This is a replica of what I ate inbetween making and drinking the accompanying cuppa and kids packed lunches and counting down to the school run. The joys!

Happy Monday everyone!