Friday 21 December 2012

Merry Apocalypse

Dear Angel of Death,

I nervously rolled up the blind this morning expecting to find rivers of steaming lava flowing
steadily passed the postbox. Instead, I was greeted by the sun shining so brightly, the scene before me resembled more the first dawn of existence than a destruction rendered in a Hieronymus Bosch painting. Not a very dramatic start to the end of the world. Disappointed.

I enjoyed a light breakfast of cornflakes with rice milk. I didn't think it a sage idea having a full stomach when the earth quakes begin shattering our much-in-need-of-repair road into unnavigable rubble.

The doorbell rang. I felt hopeful. Could this be the shady Grim Reaper bearing his over sharpened scythe? No. It was the postman with last minute festive parcels. I duly signed for the items and as I stood on the door step, I heard a familiar sound of hooves approaching. The Four Housemen! It's happening! It's happening! But the clipperty clopperting on tarmac turned the corner to reveal the local constabulary on yet another crime busting round.

I even phoned the End Of Days hot line number 666, and not a single response...

So as I sit and wait for the end, it's given pause for thought, time to contemplate the last year of my life. Mmmm. Let's see... Breastfeeding finished. Potty training began. There was the introduction of the thinking cushion. A need for anti-depressants. A couple of blogging conferences. The Pendulati, my gravity challenged breasts, suitably rehoused. Maternity tops thrown out. Stripey jumpers bought in. Readers enjoyed my writing. My Once Upon a Time stories rocked (if I do say so myself). One Week took off. And I finally realised there really is a writer in me - shame the earth is about to melt into cosmic oblivion.

Anyway, I have packed the family bag. I thought it best to travel light, including only those practical items that should come in handy at the pearly gates of heaven - there's going to be a very, very, long queue there tonight! So, I decided upon a flask of camomile tea and freshly baked lemon drizzle cake for myself, Younger Dad's laptop - my understanding there's free wi-fi in the celestial planes - and Little A's blue teddy. Have also included toothbrushes, I don't care where I am, clean teeth are a must.

Right I'm going to dye my hair and hoover the carpets now in preparation for the final curtain call.

And if this doesn't come to pass, then I wish you all, my lovely dear readers, a very merry Christmas indeed!


Thursday 20 December 2012

For Sale

Offered to anyone - ANYONE - is this curiously presented and never before seen first floor, lovingly converted two double bedroom period flat. This property retains many of it's original features like doors, windows and a tiled roof. There are plug sockets and a cooker if you should so feel domestically inclined. This charming property is centrally heated. However it's always a good idea to keep a scarf, mittens and thermal undergarments on hand, as you never know what might happen when those bitter easterly winds gust through the rafters. This rare to the market property is surrounded by transport - cars, taxis, buses, bicycles, prams to name a few, and the local skies provide wonderful opportunities for plane spotting, day and night.

So shall we take a look inside? And if you aren't partial to brown, beige or cream, here's a pair of tinted glasses to help obscure any offensive furnishings. Remember, keep an open mind, it's all about the space inside.

Take off your shoes first please, you wouldn't want their soles sullied by the glue and snot melded on the woollen mix cream carpets now would you? Attach these plastic bags to your feet, and here are some elastic bands to keep them firmly in place. Don't worry, they won't obstruct your blood flow.

So first we have this double bedroom. This is currently where the little nipper sleeps. As you can see, there are four walls and a window. Unfortunately, this property doesn't come with the spotty chest of drawers. If you look closely at the carpet you can just make out the toddler's delightful artwork, she's really created quite a subtle abstract effect with about 20 mls of calpol. See those swirls right there? I think this adds character and real depth to this property.

Next is the bathroom. Now if you don't like the clean look, and would prefer a more organic feel, just rip the whole lot out and house a bucket in the corner. You might want to keep the tiles though, stripes are apparently this season's fashion must.

Now don't you just love this master bedroom? Ah, I see you are wearing the tinted glasses. Yes, there is a lot of brown in here, but I think this gives a cosy, nay, almost muddy waterhole feel of bathing with hippos. Don't you think this really transports you to another world? Ah, a poker face I see - but I bet there's lots going on underneath? To your right, the dark caramel walls are offset by this very commonly used feature wall. Some advice - don't stare at it when you're inebriated.  And see that fireplace? An excellent spot for housing deodorant or hairspray or your alarm clock even.  

Now this is the property's W.O.W factor - this very spacious lounge. Still wearing those tinted glasses? Good for you - a sense of humour I see! Now there is so much potential here. What you could do is go completely open plan by knocking through every wall, apart from the exterior of course, erect some vertical supports - a few strategically placed columns of heavily bound cook books should suffice, we don't want the roof falling in - and create one big happy eating, bathing, sleeping, toileting space for all those wonderful memories you are sure to manufacture in this welcoming home.

And if you turn around you'll see a stair case. That's your exercise sorted. No thrombosis. No heart attacks. This flat has it all! Now would you like to accompany me upstairs?

I hope this snow flurry isn't putting you off. It's only seasonal. Remember what I said about keeping a spare set of thermals on you? Just wait till you see what this kitchen does in the summer! Now as I've already said, there's plenty of great potential in this property. If you climb out of the kitchen window you could transform an unpretentious area about three foot long and thirty inches wide into a neighbourly look-out that will accommodate one person standing, binoculars, a cup of tea and a medium sized house plant. This could indeed add further value to this property.

(There's also a fully boarded loft area, home to a hungry and constantly flatulent Gruffalo.)

As an added bonus, the sellers have agreed to leave all their take-away menus, a few freezer bag clips, the BT phone book, and a hand written address list of local cake shops in what could become your personal messy drawer.  

So how does this property grab you? Still a poker face I see. Well I need to let you know that I will be expecting a number of competitive offers come Monday morning, so you might want to have a good, hard think over the weekend.

And before you leave, please could you return the tinted glasses, plastic bags and elastic bands - I have another viewing in ten minutes.

Friday 7 December 2012

Tasting Better

I have to say, that I like being forty two. It tastes better than forty one. Maybe I prefer even numbers or maybe forteee twooo just sounds better, rolling off my tongue with an air of grace and sophistication and cleverness, or so I like to think. I barely uttered forty one to anyone but with forty two, I generously hand out the number like it's my Twitter handle (or my blog page). I simply like being forty two; it's how a good curry should taste the following day or a perfectly brewed cup of tea or a moist, crumbly slice of cake. It wears well on my skin, a realistic fit upon the comfy rolls of flesh. Perhaps I'm accepting middle age? Perhaps I've stopped resisting the linearity of time? Or perhaps I'm completely deluded? 

Twenty years ago, I'd just stepped into my twenty third year. It seems offensively young now. With stars and hope and intensity in my eyes - amplified by precocious swagger - I thought I had life sussed. Dream on younger self. If I could wind back time, I might impart the following wisdom to the more arrogant, impulsive version of me...

On the other hand, what's the point? I could share such philosophical insights as to the paradoxical nature of existence - how life is as random and meaningless as it's connected and laden with synchronicity - but I know younger me won't pay the slightest morsel of attention. Just know this twenty two year old fledgling, it generally all works out in the end, and stop blowing all your money on records, you need clothes too!

Anyway, returning to the present, my birthday falls exactly a month before Christmas, and is usually a rain soaked affair. This year I awoke to filmy blue skies and a pale yellow sun at half mast, a sure sign it was going to be a fine day. And I wasn't disappointed, my birthday haul included a stack of novels and a brand new camera no less! Who's a lucky hen then?

Younger Dad, Little A and I went for a stroll in our local park followed by a succulent roast beef lunch with all the trimmings at a local gastro pub. It was a very relaxed celebration, and as Younger Dad had taken a week off work, it turned out to be a very eventful week indeed with some surprising and not so surprising realisations...

(You'd better be paying some attention to this twenty two year old me.) 

I'm now a veteran at handling episodes of vomiting. Little A began throwing up on the night of my birthday. It began in earnest at 3.00 am - I will wake up and throw up and wake up again, and then, I will throw up and vomit and throw up again - with the last hurl around 8.00 am. Apart from the initial burst of undigested scramble egg, no other changed sheets were necessary. How so? Well I cocooned myself in a warm duvet next to her cot, and as soon as I heard a sniff of a stir, a croaky "mummy", I grabbed her in a torpedo hold, raced her to the bathroom - making it by the skin of my teeth - so that she could take aim over the side of the bath. By 9.00 am Little A had returned to life, raring to go on a bowl of Cheerios...    

As mothers, WE DESERVE the finer things in life. I don't feel I need to add much more to this other than I spent quality time rehousing my sullen wardrobe and treating myself to skin care luxury. I felt very worth it indeed.  

Little A is very, very loud... 


These were just some of  Little A's urgent cries during her very first trip to the theatre. In case you hadn't guessed, we took her to see a very charming live performance of Julia Donaldson's Stick Man. It was a joy to witness my daughter's sheer exuberance as she whooped and cheered and added her commentary throughout the unfolding story. And so wonderful to view the show through her captivated eyes.

I CAN roll with the punches. Change usually bothers me, especially if it's big change, and I will procrastinate until the final hour. But by the end of last week, our flat was on the market, and by the end of tomorrow we will have offered on another property. Not in a million years would I have predicted this as the outcome of my birthday week. And I have really surprised myself at how, so far, I've taken this turn of events in my stride. It feels very good. The timing is right. It's full steam ahead as we've boxed, cleared stuff out, booked decorators and carpet cleaners, made our flat spacious and presentable. So it's been a very busy time in our household, and the main reason I've been so quiet on the blogging front of late... 

Do you like your age?
What things did you learn last week?

Wednesday 5 December 2012


When October showed her frostier side, it was time to brave Garmentia, Goddess of the flat pack wardrobe.

"Where have you been? When was the last time you had a clear out? Why am I still expected to house your old maternity tops, and you still think you can wear shorts?"

Garmentia had a weighty point to make. And she went on...

"Throw it all out NOW," she demanded, "I have never ever felt so humiliated, so debased! I'm from IKEA you know, I deserve better." (this wardrobe definitely has ideas above its station)

So I opened the doors and rummaged through the items on my shelf. Well it wasn't so much of a rummage, more of a cursory glance - it isn't exactly piled high with clothes. I was shocked by the lack of knitted seasonal warmers.Winter is coming and I only have two workable jumpers, and other than these sorry limp looking maternity tops, I have no long sleeve vests, or blouses, or sweat shirts, nothing.

Don't ask me why but until last week, I was still braving the damp air, icy droplets, plummeting temperatures in summer t-shirts and a thin cardigan shielded by a nearly warm jacket.

As I said, until last week, when I set out on a focused shopping expedition with just one item on my list; jumpers. Equipped with my debit card and a handbag sized bottle of water, the Westfield Centre welcomed me with open arms, and I went to work on mission woollen-chenille-cashmere mix. Now usually I have a miserable time shopping for clothes; my legs are too short or The Pendulati, my cumbersome breasts, make everything look plain wrong. Not on this occasion. Garmentia must have had favourable words with the other shopping Gods, Nextonia, Gapeodite, Markus-Spencus. There was an abundance of items and colour to choose from, and ... and I frivolously blew my savings, birthday money, Younger Dad's hard earned cash on not one but seven jumpers.

Now I tend to clothe myself in muted tones but this time I ventured into unknown territory; splashes of pink, orange and red highlighted the usual blues, greens, purples and greys. It felt good to have dipped my toes in new, brighter shades. And as you can see, I bought stripes, lots of cheery, cheeky stripes.    

Spot the odd one out

When I returned home I folded each jumper neatly upon the alter of Garmentia. She sighed approvingly...

"I feel like a wardrobe again. Thank you my dear!"

And I felt sweet relief that this winter I will neither feel drab nor dreary nor cold.

Linking up with The Gallery - this week's theme is colour.  

Monday 26 November 2012

100 Word Challenge - Trembling

"Chrissy," Charlotte half wailed, "we're going to be late."

"I'm doing my best." Stupid car. Stupid me.

The engine had finally coughed into shape after nearly twenty attempts. Now we were late for David's funeral.

"Left turn, Chrissy, left turn."

I took a sharp turn down a slice of solemn suburbia, ahead the crematorium.

Limp coats were already entering the old stone building.

We shuffled in at the rear, Charlotte dressed in polite black, I, an indifferent grey.

On a plinth lay the casket.

Charlotte's hands trembled, her face bloodless.

"I'm gonna throw up Chrissy."

Hand over mouth, she bolted outside.

I'm linking up with JB47's 100 Word Challenge. This week's prompt was... Grey ...

This is part of a wider story. You can read the other instalments in the series here.

Friday 23 November 2012

Reader Appreciation Award

I am a loyal friend, I am also a loyal blogger, and maybe this is why I was recently applauded by both the wonderful Midlife Single Mum and Bibsey for encroaching upon their comment boxes with ebullient regularity. I need to add at this juncture that I'm neither a stalker nor will I go all single white female on you - does anyone remember that film? Anyway, it's good to feel appreciated. Now I just need to work on Little A. I actually think this is a lovely award, but have to admit to cheating a little; as usual with these things, you have to answer a specific set of questions, some of these I just couldn't think of interesting answers for, so I've included a selection of the award's questions and made up a few of my own. You can find the original questions here.

Where do you do most of your writing/blogging?
In a perfectly square room bedecked with crammed book shelves and a lone, distressed bureau by a window overlooking rolling hills, green pastures and a lazy river dividing the neighbouring valley. I WISH. No, I type - ahem - my magic from the kitchen table overlooking the mess of toys in the lounge and a street littered with fallen leaves and the odd page from the Metro floating on the wind. I can usually be found at this locale during nap times - when they actually happen - and on most weekday evenings when Younger Dad is buried in homework.

Lately, I've taken to writing atop a cushion on the living room floor. As you can see, it's next to the radiator so I get the added bonus of extra heat. I seem to use this location more and more when Little A has quiet time reading books on the sofa - the best alternative I could muster to the flagging nap times - and during her hourly allowance of CBeebies before tea time where she'll pull up a cushion next to me for those late afternoon mummy snuggles.    

What is your favourite time of the day and why?
In all honesty, and this is going to sound very selfish, any time of day I get five minutes to myself - so that's during Little A's nap/quiet times, and when she's clothed in sleep. I also really enjoy late afternoons with Little A; this is the time we pull out the paint, scissors and glue (just look at our recent scary creation with the googly eyes and ferocious teeth), and when we cuddle up in front of the TV.

Have you ever Googled yourself and been surprised at what you've found?
Well, if I search my actual name, Google lists my counselling website, and a variety of pages from this site. But more interestingly, according to, I am the only person with my name in the UK, so that's Internet proof I am totally unique, and why it would probably be a good idea to keep this blog anonymous, and write the novel I keep threatening to pen under a pseudonym.

One material possession  you could not live without?
My humble Dell laptop of course!

What is your dream car?
The Nissan Figaro is my Grease Lightning. It's neither fast nor practical for a toddler in tow BUT the Figaro is so aesthetically pleasing to my eyes. It's classy, rounded, quirky, for the lady wot eats cake about town, and I want one, and in olive green purlease. I don't think this car has ever been scrutinised on Top Gear, it's far too feminine!

Who would play me in a movie of my life?
Well this prompted me to ask the question - which brave actress would want to play me? Then I thought there might be a few '80's actresses dying to reinvent their career, so I thought Cher, no, not really, but Jodie Foster could pull off the roller coaster ride of my 20's and 30's with convincing aplomb. Fava beans and a nice Chianti anyone?  

Do you have any siblings?
I am the eldest of three. I have two brothers; one is a dancing doctor, the other is a rather talented fine artist and actor. But I was the one who loved books and music!

What is your Star Sign?
I am a Sagittarius - enthusiastic, honest, determined - make of that what you will. It just so happens I share the same sun and moon signs as Jane Austen, mmm. I'm not sure where I stand on astrology - my character completely changed after childbirth, and I must take this moment to thank depression and trauma, two happy symbiotic friends, for twisting my melon.  

Do you have any pets?
No, but as some of my readers know, I would love a pug! I have been keeper though to ladybirds, caterpillars, hamsters, fish, a west highland white terrier, a sliver grey tabby, and a very mardy ginger tom.

Any guilty pleasures?   
Okay, so I'm into the whole vampire thing - are you still reading? - and I'm a fan of True Blood. And I don't think I will ever tire of The Apprentice - it's so cathartic. Then there's chai latte, lemon drizzle, chocolate bread and butter pudding...

Now I want to take the time to thank those readers who've really stood by me over the last year, and some newish readers who've recently come along for the ride. Don't feel you need to respond to this, I know one reader in particular who is days away from welcoming her second child! (psst Mummy Plum)

Mummy Plum
Older Single Mum
Caught Writing
Lynsey The Mother Duck
Hello Wall
Multi Layer Mummy
3 Children and It
Three Years And Home
The Puffin Diaries
The Pretty Good Life
Bachelor Mum

Tuesday 20 November 2012

100 Word Challenge - Past Has Passed

"Stop deflecting Chrissy."

I tried not to laugh. Charlotte was handing over a frothy mug of self reproach. But guilt, I decided, wasn't a garment worth dressing in. I'd sunk my toe in David's gaze - that was all.

"Just don't understand. It's so long ago. Anyway, you dumped him remember?"

"Told him to disappear," Charlotte recoiled.

"He was so intense, so controlling."

"Still stung when I saw you both Chrissy."

"Was one time, it freaked me out. I'm sorry."

A weak smile mollified Charlotte's sour expression.

"Past has passed I guess."


Now I needed a long soak.

David's funeral couldn't come sooner.

I'm linking up with JB47's 100 Word Challenge. This week's prompt was... I tried not to laugh...

This is part of a wider story. You can read the other instalments in the series here.

Thursday 15 November 2012

#One Week - Autumn '12 - And...

One Week pushes me into paying greater attention to the world around me; the colours, the changes, the unnoticed detail. But this project is turning out to be something else entirely, more than just a nature trail, it's becoming a kind of rite of passage - a personal festival - marking the events, crystallising my reflections, honing my intent throughout the wheel of the year...

This autumn, Little A has cuddled and demanded and lashed out and cuddled some more. She's rough and tumbled and tip toed and danced. She's learnt the difference between 'like' and 'not like', and used her new found understanding as sharpened weaponry with divisive aim. The other day, when I frustrated her with another "no", she retorted with, "I don't like you any more, I want my daddy instead."

I didn't take it personally, it's to be expected, but I was quite taken aback all the same.

As she races towards three, I suspect a new era is approaching, the dawning of a parental favourite...

'The age of daddy' 

I'm secretly hoping this is the case, it might let me off the hook for a while. I might capture some time to read that book, to buy that jumper, to watch that box set, to write that novel...

Meanwhile, I have written and written and attended Blogfest and caught a cold and made casserole after casserole and dreamt and laughed and moaned and upped my medication and had my greedy fingers in the biscuit tin and seen wonderful friend after wonderful friend, and realised..... it might be a rather good idea to chill my boots and indulge myself in a few worthwhile things, like reading a good book, like having a hot bubble bath, like seeing more friends, like going to the cinema, like S.T.O.P'ing and enjoying the moment with a fine glass of wine.

As winter beckons with bare, frozen arms, I turn to autumn to thank her for showing in such simple, fluid, colourful ways, how to reestablish my equilibrium and enjoy the fruits of this year.

This is the final day of the seasonal linky One Week. I wanted to say a big, big thank you to all those lovely bloggers who joined in, and those who commented in support of this new blogging project.

One Week will return next winter for another five days, 25 February - 1 March. So get your cameras at the ready and imaginative hats on!

For more details about One Week, take a gander here. You can join in for one, two ... or the full five days...

Badge Code ...

<a href="" title="One Week"><img src="" width="225" height="169" alt="one week"></a>

Wednesday 14 November 2012

#One Week - Autumn '12 - Clearing

When the clocks change I slow down. Or I would like to. Squeezing my foot on the break would be far simpler if I didn't have a toddler on constant acceleration, hiding from monsters, 'ironing' my knickers, whooping atop the double bed.

I find this time of year very symbolic. A client once astutely observed that a tree knows how to be a tree, a flower knows how to be a flower - unfolding, basking in its innate beauty - but us humans? The myriad complexities of the human condition separate us from the cyclical ebb and flow of the natural world. Beneath the worries, the fears, the daily hubbub, the never ending to do lists, lies a forgotten moment that exists in an boundless present. I like to think this soothing balm is nature's gift if we just allow ourselves to stop, look close enough, realign our rhythm.

The leaves are falling and I am reminded that now is the time to prune the dross, simplify my schedule, rebalance my life - to dream of new possibilities as we plunge into darkness. This time of year really is one of death and rebirth. And when I think of it, we begin our lives sheathed in the warm, night time cave of the womb. In the dormant earth, the sodden black soil, behind the decay and rot lies another day, another hope, another promise, a fresh idea.

And so I need to reset the inner clock. Slow down a little. In the frenetic run up to Christmas I would like to blog less (who am I kidding), read more, find some time for yoga, luxuriate in a hot bath or two, enjoy my birthday, eat puddings, nail the plot of my book, spend time in silence, count my blessings...

...and douse myself in gratitude for all the love and support in my life.

Autumn begs me to take a chill pill, put my feet up and reflect upon this year's personal harvest.

It's time to simmer down, and be, be, be instead of do, do, do, if that's possible with a crazy toddler.

Do you mark this time of year?
What are you grateful for?  

This is the fourth day of the seasonal linky One Week. Until Friday, I'll be posting a photograph(s) and a few words that diarises and distills my experience of autumn'12. Take a peep at the details here. You can join in for one, two ... or the full five days. And don't forget to add #oneweek on Twitter, and comment on each others posts...

Badge Code ...

<a href="" title="One Week"><img src="" width="225" height="169" alt="one week"></a>

Tuesday 13 November 2012

#One Week - Autumn '12 - Closer

A week ago, just after nap time, Little A and I enjoyed a peaceful moment together on the sofa. She was still in that fuggy half awakened state, her body loosely curled around mine, my arms gently embracing her drowsy form. The only sign of life came came from the slow rhythmical movement of our chests. Up and down. Up and down. The only sound, apart from the tick ticking of the kitchen clock and the occasional hum from a car idly passing in the street, could be heard from the even inhaling and exhaling of our breath. In and out. In and out.

Outside, the late afternoon light waned, the grey slate on roofs just shades darker than the overcast sky, evening approaching with assured readiness. Little A slid from my lap and leaned into my side tucking herself under my arm. A soft hand placed itself tenderly on my stomach. Together we watched aeroplanes - giant airborne sharks - silently descending, their wing lights flashing in the semi darkness...

"Mummy can we hold that plane?"
"No darling, it's too big. But look at that one coming in. It's a tiddler."
"Can I hold that other one."
"No. Still too big."
"That plane can be the daddy one. And that plane can be the baby one."

This autumn, Little A has taken yet another social leap. Her world is over flowing with mummies, daddies, grannies and babies - every role playing game be it with teddies, building blocks, cutlery, aircraft, is all about family. And now she is a bigger girl, she also wants a pet."Mummy can I have a pet and a brother?" I don't quite know how to answer the part about a brother just yet.

Little A desires closer relation to everything and anything she comes into contact with, whether it's....

cuddling a bunny,

getting to grips with a tractor,

or making a new friend.

This season, Little A has edged ever closer to the world around her, taking risks, finding her limits, discovering the first ties of friendship. And our relationship has become more loving, more complex, a playing field of two wills. Little A is learning that she can be many things, a playful kitten, a fire breathing dragon, a demanding bear cub, a roaring lioness, but that her sudden emotional flights between calm and angry, content and tearfully upset, don't diminish our bond, nor my love for her.

This is the third day of the seasonal linky One Week. Over the next few days (until Friday) I'll be posting a photograph(s) and a few words that diarises and distills my experience of autumn '12. Take a peep at the details here. You can join in for one, two ... or the full five days. And don't forget to add #oneweek on Twitter, and comment on each others posts...

Badge Code ...

<a href="" title="One Week"><img src="" width="225" height="169" alt="one week"></a>

Monday 12 November 2012

#One Week - Autumn '12 - Colour

Autumn.... It's the season of conkers and casseroles. Colds and crumpets.

I love this time of year.

It starts with the turn of one audacious leaf.  

Then the biggest fare well party commences in full fiery riot..  

Earth bound confetti.

A kaleidoscope of colour. 

Decaying leaves smothered in palate rich flavours...

...of mustard, ketch-up and plum sauce. 

Nature, so adept at change. 

Dewy spiderwebs floating in air borne neighbourhoods,

as temporary as my thoughts.

Or a lone arachnid playing house under the wing mirror of my car. 

I admire peach lit morning mist,

and the fresh, cold bite of atmospheric breath on my finger tips.

Autumn disrobes,

and I wrap up warm.

I love nothing more than encasing my feet in socks warmed on radiators. 

I hanker after bangers and mash. 

I salivate over treacly sponge and custard. 

I lust after slices of lemon drizzle with tea.

I look forward to the inner adjustments this season inevitably brings.

This is the second day of the seasonal linky One Week. Over the next few days (until Friday) I'll be posting a photograph(s) and a few words that diarises and distills my experience of autumn '12. Take a peep at the details here. You can join in for one, two ... or the full five days. And don't forget to add #oneweek on Twitter, and comment on each others posts... 

Badge Code ...

<a href="" title="One Week"><img src="" width="225" height="169" alt="one week"></a>

Sunday 11 November 2012

#One Week - Autumn '12 - Park Life (or not)

This is our bench. The wobbly bench. The bench Little A and I have shared many a ham sandwich and blueberry muffin picnic on. It sits between two large trees in the playground of our local park. The wobbly bench is a place to relax, to wonder, to dream, it's a rickety station from which to appreciate all the running, chasing, jumping, clamouring, and the very special place where our alter egos - Piggy (me) and Bunny (Little A) - come out to play.

Until a couple of weeks ago, that is, when upon returning to our favourite playground after a brief hiatus - I don't enjoy being coated in damp drizzle - we were greeted by this post apocalyptic sight...

Apart from a lone climbing frame, everything had been excavated, dismantled, removed. The toddler swings. Gone. The big children swings. Gone. The round-a-bout. Gone. The small climbing frame. Gone. Our wobbly bench. Obliterated. All that was left were heaps of upturned tarmac and rubble.

"The swings have gone Piggy."

"I know Bunny."

"Look, the big slide is still there."

"For the moment."

"Are they going to build new ones Piggy?"

"I hope so Bunny. I hope so."

The workmen eyed me with suspicion upon clocking my taking photos of their bombsite.

"Can I ask what you're doing love?" A fluorescent jacketed workman asks taking large strides in earth covered boots towards me.

"Erm, I'm just a mum, I, err, I'm taking pictures for my blog" I reply sheepishly.

"No worries, we sometimes get dodgy types taking pictures."

"Oh, okay. Fine." I'm left wondering why a 'dodgy type' would take a photo of a building site.

The playground is under renovation, which is a good thing, but according to mister workman, a job that was supposed to be completed within a month is now - surprise, surprise - taking longer than originally anticipated. Apparently the council is averse to footing the bill for digging up the tarmac. I just hope we have a new playground by next spring.

In the mean time Little A and I will have to kick leaves in another park.

R.I.P wobbly bench.

This is the first day of the seasonal linky One Week. Over the next five days (Monday till Friday) I'll be posting a photograph(s) and a few words that diarises and distills my experience of autumn '12. Take a peep at the details here. You can join in for one, two ... or the full five days. And don't forget to add #oneweek on Twitter, and comment on each others posts...

Badge Code ...

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Thursday 8 November 2012


Last week I decided upon a wee break from the blogosphere. And what did I fill the empty hours with? Well, playing nurse to a cranky little girl with a chest and ear infection, and bemoaning that I too had a blocked nose and spluttering cough. Maybe succumbing to a virus has been a blessing in disguise, as it meant an enforced break, to a degree, from this here blog.

So it's time to cheer away the Autumn sniffles, return to writing, and what better way than deliberating over the many silver linings from the past few days (and coming weekend).

Restyled, therefore I am. I really should have my haircut more often. A six month gap between visits to the local coiffeurs is a gap too long. As my hair flows beyond my shoulders, it's all too easy to tie it up in a knot and forget about the tangled growth. Ashamedly, and to the tut tutting from my late Grandmother, my scalp has rarely seen the tooth of a comb. So on Saturday, I removed the hair band, sat back with an out dated, over fingered magazine, and let the hairdresser sculpt my tresses. I never seem to finish the complimentary tea and Nice biscuit, my attention always seduced by the pages of Hello. Anyway, I was delighted with the results. Three inches taken off, my hair now bounces like a newborn lamb on a trampoline. A good hair cut always make me feel good, brand new, years younger. This morning, I dyed away the grey, and with that, all my neurotic worries about ageing, and my impending *cough* *cough* 42nd birthday wafted into the ether. Now all I need is a new pair of jeans (and tops, and jumpers, and shoes, and knickers)...

Blogging Conference. This Saturday I'm attending the Mumsnet Blogfest. It was a spur of the moment decision. I really, really enjoyed Britmums Live, and when I found that a number of my blogging buddies were going, I thought why the heck not? It's a date for me and my blog. And to anyone going, please hunt me down. I'm a very friendly, approachable sort of gal. I even have a nice S.M.I.L.E. Sold? I hope so! Additionally, I'm very much looking forward to meeting the faces behind some lovely new blogs I've had the pleasure of recently discovering; Grandad Came To Tea, The Pretty Good Life.

Novel Idea. I've had bursts of inspiration for tucking and tweaking some of the plot lines of my novel, Four Gigs. I find that it's really useful to let thoughts percolate in the background, and then ta daaa, my mind surprises me with improvements to the original story lines. I've also had a canny idea for developing my characters; a scrapbook on Pinterest. Instead of a lengthy exercise of cutting images from magazines, I like the idea of quickly collating all manner of character (facial, clothes, diet, hobbies), and location (streets, buildings, landmarks) details using a Pinterest board. I'm genuinely excited at how my imagination is shaping the story, how I find myself slipping into the shoes of my main protagonist, viewing the world as she does. I'm not ready to start the writing just yet, there's still some further research to do, but nevertheless, I'm raring to unleash my fingers on the keyboard...

To buggy or not to buggy. For nearly three years now I have pushed Little A around in a three wheeled Mountain Buggy. Given that I live in London and to my knowledge there are no mountains, in fact, not a whiff of a mole hill, I never thought this was the most practical choice of pram. I don't know why, but while I was pregnant, I handed over the most important decision on baby gear - the buggy - to Younger Dad and a battered copy of Which Magazine. I was hormonal. I was completely mad. But I wasn't totally wrong in trusting my husband's judgement either. The Mountain Buggy has been reliable, sturdy, fulfilled its purpose. It's also very, very heavy. This week though, there was a new arrival in our home. I am now the proud owner - thank you ebay - of a super folding, light weight Maclaren. At last, I can manage the crowds in Westfield. At last, I can tackle The Underground. At last, the escalator is no longer the enemy. At last, a whole new social panorama has opened to me.

A new blog. Last Friday spontaneity got the better of me, and I created The Adventures of Parsley Pug. It's a frivolous space for the sole aim of writing children's stories. Many, many moons ago, I conjured up the character, Parsley Pug, and Younger Dad has been pressing me to write the stories ever since. I doubt I will post that often, I don't expect many page views, but then I'm not that bothered, as this blog is personal, for me, my imagination, my sense of wonder, and fun.

One Week. This week, virus permitting, I've been gearing up for One Week, which begins next Monday. I've edited my photographs and somehow managed to pen a few words through the barricades of a fuggy head, tiredness and heaps of snotty tissues. So come to think of it, I haven't strictly had a break from blogging. Anyway, if you are at a loss for inspiration, please join in!

Now that was a shameless plug!

I'm linking up this post with Reasons To Be Cheerful, it's been a while!

Thursday 1 November 2012


The red traffic light tells me in plain language. STOP.

The slow cooker hints at a life in third gear, not fifth.

I've been told on a number of occasions now that I'm looking a little pallid.

The mirror confirms my skin isn't in the best of shape.

Yet again, I've neglected my wardrobe. Two pairs of jeans are in the bin, the third is cultivating a significant breach in the right knee.

Recently, I've fallen into a pattern of three posts a week. I don't know how this happened, although I suspect a latent desire for a surge in stats. I convinced myself writing practice is the overarching drive, which I'm sure, overall, it is. Or maybe superstition is tugging at my taupe jumper; I'm simply averse to the idea of an October tally of thirteen posts!

Still, something had to give. I can't keep up the pace I've unfairly set myself. So it was with sweet relief (and worry) that at the beginning of this week, I found myself clueless as to what to pen. My head, a blank. My imagination, in a stupor.

Between you and me, I was secretly pleased I was unable to join in this week's 100 Word Challenge as the prompt, a ghoulish recipe - in keeping with Halloween - didn't feel suited to the short story I'm telling. Then I did something liberating. I have a back log of memes I've been tagged in dating back to the beginning of this year that, embarrassingly, I haven't responded to, probably never will, and barring a chosen few, I just deleted them all. Yes, all. I do feel chastened by guilt at my impetuous action - and I am very sorry to those *bloggers who kindly thought of me - but it was the right thing to do. I felt relief. Maybe it's the time of year? Like nature in her current riotous dismantling, I'm offloading baggage. (*Please don't let this put you off tagging me, I just needed a clear out).

You see, this week, I've needed a little space, some downtime, some small separation from my laptop.

On Tuesday morning, whilst delighting at crisp blue skies, Little A and I decided an outing to Kew Gardens would be a jolly fine thing to do. There, we busied our time in the children's outdoor and indoor play areas. Apart from an alarming few moments where I thought I'd lost Little A, my feet frozen to the floor, waves of head spinning panic wracking my limbs, we had a deliciously wonderful mummy and daughter time together. We luncheoned on fish pie, ham sandwiches and a necessary slice of lemon drizzle. Little A befriended an older girl who clung to a cream teddy. And, to my surprise, she conquered the big curly wurly slide; "again, again Mummy, let me go again," she cheered triumphantly with rosy zeal in her cheeks.

But it wasn't until we strolled peacefully down paths lined with fiery autumnal bursts and the odd Japanese Pagoda Tree, that I found myself attuning to a more peaceful rhythm. And then, in the quiet, in the moment's chill, ideas for posts greeted me like welcome friends.

When my inner voice tells me to S.T.O.P, I need to pay a little more attention. Having a weighty expectation of how much I should or shouldn't write is no good for my creativity. "Just stop Older Mum", I hear the voice gently prodding. Okay, I will. Besides, I need to conserve energy for One Week!

So in an effort to trim my ambition, this will be my one and only post for the week.

Do you respond to every meme you've been tagged in?
When do you like to take a break from blogging?

Friday 26 October 2012

My Next Big Thing

The very light and lovely Polly at Caught Writing has tagged me to talk about My Next Big Thing using the questions below, and then to pass the baton onto fellow bloggers and writers. I am very glad and honoured she chose me, as it just so happens I have an idea! This meme originally began, I believe, by Karen McCann, author of Dancing in the Fountain.

So, My Next Big Thing, I hope, is that I'm taking tentative steps towards penning my first feature length story. As this is my first attempt at writing a chunky piece of fiction, I thought it a wise idea to stay within the confines of my comfort zone, writing about what I know, and have experienced. The main career and creative arcs in my life so far have been within the music industry, as a DJ, and psychology, as a counsellor. I should rightly include being a mum as well! The story is essentially a psychological drama/thriller set in the mid-nineties clubbing scene.

I have been thinking and dreaming my novel since March this year. I'm still very much ensnared in the planning and plotting stage, for me, it's very important the subplots I have in mind, gel clearly and believably with the main thread of the story. I'm about to take a deep dive into the shape and tone of my characters, and that should really help tie up the looser ends of the various plots.

Anyway, here are more of the details...

What is the working title of the project?
It was only a week or so ago that the name came to mind. I may well change it, at the moment, the title is based on the main back bone of the tale. And the title is... Four Gigs. I guess I wanted a punchy title that really related to the job of the main protagonist, Jessica Dance, and the social scenery the story is set against. And as a sub heading/title to Four Gigs I am possibly thinking of something along the lines of....'What happens when your groove goes missing.' A strap line such as this could work on a variety of levels with the story's themes and character journeys.

Where did the idea come from?
Originally, I had in mind a story whereby the main character is a therapist, that idea is still whirring away behind the scenes. Then, through writing my Once Upon a Time posts, and this post in particular, I really started thinking about my life as a DJ, and how I almost 'made the big time' but didn't quite due to circumstances I'll save for another blog post. I liked the idea of writing a story that combined my past and current passions, music and psychology. Living vicariously through my main character, and her career success, may help to lay to rest some of the lingering residues of what, for me, could have been and never was. I think it's the most fitting story for me to pen, and I have a lot to gain from writing it.

What genre does the project fall under?    
I have to admit to being a little clueless here, as I'm not really aware - apart from the main ones - of all the genres out there... But Four Gigs would lie somewhere between psychological drama and thriller, I think.

Which actors would you chose to play your characters in a movie rendition?
Now this, I found, was a tricky question, given that I haven't watched much TV or many films of late. Whoever I choose for the central characters would need to be in their late twenties, and thirties. So I did a little research basing my decision solely upon whether the face was a good fit. And here is my all British cast of main players...

  • Jessica Dance - Felicity Jones, she has the dark brown hair and green eyes and straight forward, natural, almost tom boyish femininity that Jessica possess.

Felicity Jones as Jessica Dance - Image, Google.

  • Ben Jones, Jessica's current boyfriend - Jim Sturgess, remember how cocky and irritating he was in the film of the book, One Day?
  • Katrin Chase, Jessica's friend of dubious intent - Ruth Wilson, who can aptly carry off 'seductive'.
  • Lucas 'Flipper' Dance, Jessica's younger brother, who suffers from bi-polar disorder - Jamie Bell, he can weather an expression that looks like he's got a lot on his plate.
  • Lucy Dance, Jessica's mother - Kristin Scott Thomas, intelligent, critical, both strong and fragile.
  • Richard Dance, Jessica's father - Bill Nihy, I think he would play the 'philandering buffoon' rather well.

What is the one sentence synopsis of your project? 
This is going to be a challenge, so I will attempt to give this my best shot...

Jessica Dance, or Jessy D, is a talented and very in-demand club DJ with plenty of, and perhaps too much ambition, until the day she finds herself with the wrong record box, and has to make choices, about her career, her relationships, everything she knows, until ultimately, she's forced to face the reality, and the fallout from a childhood accident.   

How was that for an elevator pitch?  I hope it wasn't too cliched and unoriginal, it may need some work.

Will your book be self published or represented by an agency?
In all honesty, given how saturated the publishing market is, I think this novel may need plenty of self marketing first before an agent takes the remotest interest, so I will probably go down the self publishing route, which is no bad thing given applications like Kindle.

How long will it take to write the first draft? 
This may not be realistic but I would like to have the first draft written within a year and a half. I am hoping when Little A's hours increase at nursery next year, I will have the time to write this, or else, there are going to be some early mornings!

What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?
Again, this was quite difficult as I haven't read fiction widely for a while, it's been psychology texts and baby books for the last few years or so! However, I am a big fan of Ian McEwan, he is a master of narrative twists, writes beautiful prose, and isn't afraid to explore the darker recesses of the human mind, especially in his earlier works. I find reading, acknowledging, the more unpleasant side of human behaviour, something we all have the potential for, thanks in large to the reptilian part of our brain, a cathartic experience. Although not really related in genre, I'm also a fan of Douglas Coupland. I love his philosophical take on the human condition, and how well rounded and authentic his characters are. His novels are littered with quirky, well observed personalities.

Who or what have inspired you to write this novel?
My career as a DJ, and being a part of something that was at the time, so exciting, so anti-establishment, so much fun; the acid house movement of the late eighties and nineties. It was a time of wonderful creativity, personal happiness and I was blessed with so much opportunity. In a way I want this story to be a thank you, a love letter, to the music scene that gave me a life, a purpose, a reason not to work the nine to five.

What else about your project might pique your readers interest?
The story is set in Leeds, Manchester and London. I want to make the clubbing experience, the DJ lifestyle as authentic as I can by referencing the clubs, record shops, music, and some of the actual DJ's that existed at the time. This story isn't just about clubbing and DJ'ing though, they're the back drop, it's really about the relationships between Jess, her family, friends and boyfriend, and the interpersonal conflicts she has to understand and work through. I'm hoping the story won't just appeal to twenty and thirty somethings, but to the now forty and fifty somethings who partied and played back in the day.

And now I would like to pass the torch onto the following bloggers and writers who I think are great. (Please don't feel obliged to do this, and your project doesn't have to be a novel or writing in general).

Lynsey the Mother Duck - Lynsey is currently writing a piece of fiction, Camomile Crescent on her blog, which is really well written, and I think she has some other writing projects up her sleeves too, so I'm very much looking forward to reading what she has to say.

Dorky Mum - I really, really, really enjoy her writing, and I have a sneaking suspicion she has some bigger writing projects in mind. And if she has, I'm dying to know what they are!

Mummy Plum - She writes the most beautifully enchanting posts, and I think she is working on something at the moment, but as she is a month away from meeting her second child, I won't hold her to responding to this, maybe at a much later date ;o).

Wednesday 24 October 2012

#Once upon a time - Cheese Straws

Once upon a time .....

I baked cheese straws with Grandma. I can still see the way they crumbled, like flaky earth, between my fingers, and taste the salty cheddar on my tongue.

Some memories are immortal, unbreakable, clung onto like the last ever embrace, the last ever Spring, never relinquished nor forsaken by present concerns or future dreams. These memories, I believe, are the ones that dance on the surface, that shine like a long lost friend, before two eyelids seal, concluding their life's work at the final breath.

And so during my last moments - toes crossed these won't befall me for a long, long time to come - I hope it's Sundays with my Grandparents, as well as sublime recollections of Little A and Younger Dad, that fill the dying cells with warmth and love and reassuring familiarity, until the dark voyage takes me who knows where...

Until I was about fourteen years old - and all I cared about was boys, clothes and music - my Dad offloaded my brother and I at our Grandparent's home every Sunday afternoon, sometime, I think, between the hours of two and six thirty. I can't remember when I started going, I might have been five, all I recall is that Sundays were about Grandma and Grandad. And I longed for those afternoons with my two adored relatives.

Grandad put 'gentle' into gentleman; warm, kind, generous of his time. Grandma had a mind sharper than a lemon tree; wily, observant, precise. Never a day passed when her nails weren't painted, or her hair immaculately arranged.

Sunday afternoon's were the reserve of treasure hunts, hide and seek, clothes horse dens, pulling stubborn weeds from flowerbeds that flanked the lawn, smelling plump tomatoes in the humid greenhouse, leafing through the musty pages of copious volumes of Readers Digest and The National Geographic piled so high in the secret cupboard they obscured the oval window at the rear - my imagination cultivated, ripened, harvested, before enjoying pancakes soaked in butter and golden syrup in front of Bonanza and the Muppet Show.

Sometimes Grandma and Grandad glided across their dining room floor, swirling, dancing their ballroom waltz for us. Grandad taught me his graceful one-two-three, one-two-three, while I stood atop his polished shoes. Meanwhile, Grandma's bedroom was a study in feminine mystery; a mirror, a comb and a brush aligned perfectly on the dressing table; brightly coloured lipsticks that drew irregular lines over my small puckered mouth; a wardrobe full of kitten healed shoes, and a special golden pair that dwarfed my dainty feet whilst stumbling with a silver handbag dangling inches from the floor.

And while Grandad and my brother tinkered with Meccano, Lego and Airfix models, Grandma and I got to grips with wooden spoons and pre-greased baking sheets. Our time was lovingly spent stirring the ingredients for meringues or vanilla sponges, Grandma instructing me on the correct appearance of whisked egg white peaks, on the exact stiffness of a cake batter as it dolloped from the spoon into the bowl. And we experimented, often floundering, with homemade toffee, chocolate and ice cream.

But it was making cheese straws I remember with particular fondness...

On with the pinafore aprons, mine double knotted, hands washed, then Grandma fetches the brown mixing bowl from the light blue cupboard full of orange Tupperware, stacked foil containers, and the not so secret stash of grandchild treats. Together four hands crumble the butter and flour. Cheese and water added, Grandma rolls out the pastry, while I cut strips off and twist them on the oven tray. Grandma carefully places the straws using heavily padded gloves with a bright flowery print onto the shelf of the stand alone cooker. Then the smell... that savoury smell, the smell of melting cheese, of comfort and cuddles and generational tenderness, the smell that could only spill from a grandmother's kitchen.    

Grandad sadly passed away when I was fifteen years old. The day of my wedding Grandma was trapped - her joints crumpling - in a nursing home, unable to attend the happy day. In my heart, the wedding cake was a fitting tribute to all those years, all those afternoons spent blending, infusing, whisking, rolling. And the wedding desert, it wasn't a traditional cake, was a layered tower of sweet toothed fancies; passion fruit meringue pies, white chocolate cheese cake tarts, mini cup cakes, and crowned with one of my favourites, a vanilla sponge lavished in lemon icing.

My love of food, especially those cosseting savouries and sweets, can be traced solely to Grandma. When I bite into a buttery slice of Madeira cake or jammy almond slice or crunch on a cheesy bread stick, I always think of her. And my Grandma's culinary legacy? Well I love creating her signature dishes, Yorkshire pudding, strawberry crumble, tiffin... And in my kitchen today, Little A and I enjoy nothing more than the simple pleasures of baking banana muffins, whipping cream, and dunking fingers in smooth, melted chocolate.

In loving memory of my Grandma and Grandad.

So once upon a time, what did you enjoy (or dislike) doing, seeing or creating? It could be anything. What were you like many moons ago? Do you have a once upon a time story to tell or picture to share? It could be a happy, sad or humorous tale. The skies the limit. So do link up below and grab the badge code ... and don't forget to tweet #onceuponatime. This is a monthly meme.

You can read my other once upon a time stories here.

Once Upon A Time
Grab the badge code ...

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Monday 22 October 2012

100 Word Challenge - Glaciated

My body prickled with cold. Flashes of his gaze, that knowing exchange, abused my thoughts.

It might be a Spring morning but frost permeated the kitchen, ice dislocating words between allies, and Winter will bring heartache and shattered ties...

"Did I want him?"

"Yes, that's what I asked," Charlotte jabbed.

"No, not like that. I mean he was attractive. But repelled me too. Listen Char," I pleaded, "I would never have gone for him."


"Yes, really. You're my friend."

Heart beats jolted in the hollow of my throat. Then it occurred to me...

"Char, you're deflecting guilt onto me."

Now Charlotte stood rigid, glaciated.

"Why? Why Char?"

I'm linking up with JB47's 100 Word Challenge. This week's prompt was... and Winter will bring...

This is part of a wider story. You can read the other instalments in the series here.

Thursday 18 October 2012

The Bobby-in-a-mow

Little A's imaginary play mate is 'Bobby-in-a-mow'. The other day I realised Bobby-in-a-mow rhymes with Gruffalo, and well, I just couldn't help myself. So here's my rendition of that wonderful story by Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler...


Little A climbed the stairs to the kitchen as fast as she could.
Mummy saw Little A and thought she's up to no good.
"Where are you going to, youngest one of the house?
Come back to your bedroom, and pick up Mickey Mouse."
"That's very organised of you, Mummy, but no -
I'm off for elevenses with Bobby-in-a-mow."

"Bobby-in-a-mow? Who's Bobby-in-a-mow?"
"Bobby-in-a-mow! Why, didn't you know?

"He has a frightful perm, and frightful nails,
And frightful fungus on three waggly tails."

"Where are you meeting him?" 
"Here, on the stair,
And his favourite game is pulling mummy's hair."

"Pulling mummy's hair! I'm off" Mummy said.
Bye bye, Little A," and away she sped.

"Silly old Mummy! Doesn't she know,
There's no such thing as Bobby-in-a-mow?"

Little A climbed the stairs to the kitchen as fast as she could.
Daddy saw Little A and thought she's up to no good.
"Where are you going to youngest one of the house?
"Come look what I've found, a slimy grey louse."
That's very inviting of you, Daddy, but no -
I'm off for elevenses with Bobby-in-a-mow."

"Bobby-in-a-mow? Who's Bobby-in-a-mow?"
"Bobby-in-a-mow! Why, didn't you know?

He has a crooked back, and joined-up stumpy toes,
And a massive great bogey dangling off the end of his nose."

"Where are you meeting him?" 
"Up by the fridge,
And his favourite game is scaling Daddy bridge."

"Daddy bridge! I'm off" Daddy said.
Bye bye, Little A," and away he sped.

"Silly old Daddy! Doesn't he know,
There's no such thing as Bobby-"

But who is this monster with the frightful nails
And frightful fungus on three waggly tails?
He has a crooked back, and joined-up stumpy toes,
And a massive great bogey dangling off the end of his nose.

"Oh help! Oh no!
It's Bobby-in-a-mow!

"My favourite game! Bobby-in-a-mow said.
"You'll feel ace spinning on my head."

"Ace?" said Little A. "Don't call me ace!

I'm the bossiest creature, now get in place.
Just amble beside me and soon you'll know,
Mummy and Daddy are mere putty and dough."

"Okay," said Bobby-in-a-mow, creasing with glee.
"You start walking, and I'll come and sight see."

They wandered and walked till Bobby-in-a-mow said,
"I hear yawning in the bedroom ahead."

"It's Mummy," said Little A. "Why, Mummy, hello!"
Mummy took one look at Bobby-in-the-mow.
"Goodness me!" she said, "Bye bye, Little A,"
And she picked up her duster and ran away.

"See?" said Little A. "Told you so."
"Outstanding!" said Bobby-in-a-mow.

They wandered some more till Bobby-in-a-mow said,
"I hear water running in the bathroom ahead."

"It's Daddy," said Little A. "Why, Daddy, hello!"
Daddy took one look at Bobby-in-a-mow.
"Heavens above!" he said, "Bye bye, Little A,"  
Hiding behind the door he quivered, "I don't want to play." 

"Well, Bobby-in-a-mow," Little A said. "You see?
Mummy and Daddy fall in line behind me!
But now I'm bored and I need some fun.
My favourite game is - Bobby-in-a-mow ski run!"

"Bobby-in-a-mow ski run!" Bobby-in-a-mow said,
And faster than a cheetah he evaporated instead.

Little A climbed the stairs to the kitchen as fast as she could.
She found the chocolate mousse and it tasted rather good.

And if you liked this, you might also like my versions of Stick Man and We're Going On A Bear Hunt.

News Flash - I entered this piece in a competition hosted by the lovely Mummy Constant to win either a Gruffalo Trunki or Chums set. Anyway, Bobby-in-a-mow scooped the first prize of the Gruffalo Trunki itself which I'm simply over moon about - Trunki's make the perfect toddler travel accessory! Hop over and give Trunki an extra special seasonal 'like' on their Facebook page.
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