Thursday, 24 February 2011

This weeks lessons or reinforcements......

  1. Jogging is kinda fun, my breathing is now amazingly somewhat regular rather than the previous attempt at fighting and gasping for my last breath and I can learn to ignore the pain that is those useless things us women are forced to deal born with;
  2. When you have never run before, even if you are having fun, your knees may feel like they are being tortured for no good reason and go on strike while systematically hitting you with a dull hammer for the next 2 days just to remind you how unhappy they are with your behaviour;
  3. Investing in a decent pair of running shoes is more important than the cost and watching yourself on video to analyse the alignment of your feet when running, so you can identify why your knee is striking for better working conditions, is enlightening even if you find it hard not to stare in horror at your big fat ass on said video;
  4. When you plug your iPod into the fancy treadmill to listen to a new track and automatically tune it to the same volume as that which you use for Criminal Mind episodes its a good idea to turn the music down pretty darn quick if it is too loud to avoid your ears ringing for the following 24 hours;
  5. When you hear a persistent drip in the evening it is unlikely to be coming from outside.  Sticking your head out of the back door in the dead of night when it is throwing it down with rain is not going to help - it's dark.  If you can hear it inside the house then it is dripping inside the house!  Don't wait for your Hubby to be have more common sense than you;
  6. It is important for your own mental health not to panic when you identify that the leak that is currently discolouring the ceiling and bubbling the paint on the walls your Hubby laboured over for so long 4 months ago (and the afore mentioned persistant drip) is coming from a central heating pipe that is located in the most inaccessible part of the house - under the bath in the far corner - those engineers are ingenious - they will come and save the day, never fear.  Stressing about the potential need for the bath to be ripped out in order to facilitate the repair does not help the situation and hell woman you are insured up to the eyeballs;
  7. Dogs do not like parsnips - in fact they look at you in disgust, turn around and walk off until you come to your senses and feed them carrot, celery, onion, potato or even better jelly belly beans;
  8. If you cannot help getting upset at the ridiculous excuses the government has for cutting public sector jobs by the thousands and services to the needy then you really should watch something other than the news (you know some light hearted entertainment like Criminal Minds or NCIS) because it does not help to shout at the TV;
  9. Sometimes you are hit over the head by a lightbulb and discover you know a lot about a small range of things - the rest?  totally clueless - you know, like when you discover that New Zealand is on a big ass huge faultline.  You also think that if the whole God thing is real, you'd briefly stop to wonder if he was mighty peeved at the human race for some reason or just suffering from PMT;
  10. If you had greenfingers, a nice garden to go with those green fingers and didn't have 3 dogs that eat every plant in sight you might attempt to grow your own fruit and vegetables cos DAMN the already grown stuff is breaking the bank these last few months;
  11. Then you would decide that you need to live in a warm country because you suspect that it is difficult to grow mangos, pineapples, apples, melons and such like in a country that sees about 3 days of sun a year and even less days of warmth;
  12. A hot shower is a wonderful thing - just short of bliss after having to put up with wallowing (for as short a time as possible) in your own muck (otherwise known as a bath) because your shower goes on strike at it's overuse for very little payback;
  13. When your daughter grows up you sit in some sort of shock when you realise that she will do exactly the same things you did as a young woman when you begin to let her loose in the outside world - yep, drunk before she was out the door*.  You kinda know that already, but to see it in action in glorious technicolour is a bit of an eyeopener the first time.  The following morning, because you have a relationship where she will happily relay the nights events (those she remembers) you sit in awe of the fact that you are conscious of sitting there and thinking "Well, duh, of course that was going to happen" and then realise that she has to learn those things for herself; and
  14. Never ever let your Beautiful B allow you to be swayed into being served by her in the not to be named famous burger joint, just so she knows that you are proud of her**.  It only leads to aimless buying of pancakes and syrup for breakfast before you know just how much of your daily allowance it will take up. 

*   I will just state for the record that she was in a totally safe environment, was with trusted friends and staying at trusted friends house that evening (ignore the fact that trusted friend was that drunk at New Year that she either lost her phone or was violently sick all over it - can't remember which) 
**  No idea what that was about - had my mum turned up at my place of work for a burger stick of Blackpool rock I'd may have cried (oh wait she worked there - she was never gonna ask me for a stick of rock - though she did once tell me off for allowing my work colleagues to draw over the lenses of my brand new glasses with permanent marker and she probably took secret delight in some of the men pouring mint essence over the balls of my boyfriend at the time for being a cocky so and so

Friday, 18 February 2011


So Beautiful B hates her's official, I mean she posted it on Facebook an' all!  Must be really serious.

Lord knows I have worked my little rocks off to afford her the best life I can and I go without so she gets.  Alongside the need to instil sufficient values in her early enough that one day she will spread her wings and fly far far away  not too far away (hopefully) which dictated the need to have her buying most of her "must have" non-essential clothes and to pay for Sky + and movies should she wish to have them. 

She knows she is loved, til all the stars fall out of the sky because lets face it, I'm safe in that little ditty because it ain't never going to happen until Armageddon and after a brief stint in pergatory a cult commonly known as Jehovah's Witnesses Armageddon is as likely as Santa being real. 

I make sure I tell her every day (if memory does not fail me which it appears to do with alarming frequency of late) you know, just in case, and because well every child should be told that every day so they know they are loved and adored.

Unfortunately, despite somehow managing to fetch up a wonderfully stable child to be a gorgeous confident young woman for whom boys will fall at her feet and I will kill every single one of them I cannot take away one heart ache, one that requires a post on Facebook so the whole world knows her pain........

......the heart ache that is ordering a dress for a party on Saturday and it arriving by post* and finding that it is too big.  Oh but for the joys of fat fighters working.....

*   after the first one not even making it to Royal Mail and Beautiful B explaining to the nice customer service lady at said useless internet website that she would purposely walk the whole of England to maim anyone that does not refund and reissue another dress like a further dress to be issued by next day delivery. I can only imagine where she inherited the inability to control her frustration from.....

Tuesday, 8 February 2011


Of course, when I discuss not having to shout at Beautiful B for over a year that does not include the shouting that commenced within the 24 hours following said post because when a certain job is done, only half of it is completed despite repeated requests to complete the job in its entirity.

I still adore her though and she is still my world.

Wednesday, 2 February 2011

Beautiful B......

Be prepared - this is a long post.  It is about and to Beautiful B and she deserves every word and suck it up!

Well by now, you all know she is fabulous even if she is short. 

Last night we had her first parent's evening at college.  I knew what was coming, nobody enjoys the course and feels like she has "come home" as much as she does and fails miserably at it.  I was kinda expecting praise to rain down on her and it did.  Before y'all start I can be a bugger - trust me, she has to work hard sometimes for praise of me.  Mum was a hard tasker master, ergo so am I.  She has never been told off for any grade, ever in her entire life.  She is told off if she does not give 100% to her school work and attitude towards it.

Essentially Beautiful B is on a cadetship for nursing spending 2 days in college and 3 out on nursing placements and she absolutely loves it*.  It is so wonderful to watch and makes me feel all squishy inside because the poor baba went through a few HUGE troubles a few years ago and worked her little rocks off to come out of the other side, and boy did she come out of the other side fighting.  

She pulled herself out the other side and with the loving support of Hubby and I and a load of other lovely people (and y'all know who you are) she has been determined to make something of herself.  She is forever fighting to let go of the past.  She continues to fight issues that are a direct result of some decisions I made before she was born (but I cannot be truly sorry because I wouldn't have her if I hadn't and I wouldn't swap her for all the stars in the sky). 

She is determined to have a career, to have that career before she has the kids she so desperately wants.  She refuses, says she will not, be stuck in the same rut as others she knows and fights every single day to make a career and to be a better person than she already is.  She has a multitude of emotional issues to deal with as a result of others creating lots of worries and angst and yes sometimes it gets her down, sometimes I have to step in to remind some people that she is a teenager and needs support and not arguments but she fights to be bright and positive every single day.

So.....yesterday I was told that she was the shining star in the class, that wherever she is her smile lights up a room and makes everyone happy because she is infectious.  That she is a wonderful mediator, cares immensely for everyone in her class and her patients (politically correct name "Service Users"!!!!!) especially and is an outstanding ambassador for the course.  She completes her work before everyone else, that she is more motivated than anyone they have ever met and that the only criticism they could give her was that she can be a little impatient when she has completed her work and is waiting for others to catch up.**

They told her (and one of them was a qualified nurse) that they have no doubt that she will be a nurse and a bloody good one at that.

One of them said "we are not telling you anything you don't know, are we?"  I had to admit they weren't.  She is content.  Happy.  In her element. Has found her true calling.  and that is evident every single time she comes home and tells me about a lady who sits in a day care centre knitting all day, dancing in her chair and singing along with songs using her artificial voice box, or that she hugged someone, or how she loves the old war time stories.  Who would have thought it; my baba grew up and became one of the most compassionate people I know.

Yes, some of her "friends" have used her as a result in the past and she has cried and asked why.  Worse, some people associated with some family members still do it and part of me thinks that one day that straw will break the camels back and she will cut them off but deep down I know she won't because she will forgive even if she doesn't forget because that is my Beautiful B.

I taught her to show empathy.  I taught her to not get involved in teenage arguments and to sit back and listen, to everyone, to not take sides and to not give an opinion unless it was requested and warranted.  She has watched me counsel Angel time after time and never give advice unless it was requested and just to be there as that shoulder that is so often needed.  I'll tell you what though, my back would have broken a long time ago and I'd have totally walked away from some of my family and friends had they treated me the way some treat her so she is a better person than I will ever ever ever be.

We have had our issues; there are times I have walked out of the house and just left her screeching at the top of her voice before we got her help we had been asking requesting over a year, left her with Hubby to mediate because I was at risk of losing my sanity and fearing above all that I might end up saying something that would live with her forever when I didn't mean it and I would never forgive myself.  Now, she is all grown up and such a shining example to all of those around her. 

Hubby played a huge role in shaping who she is. He is not her real father but he treats her like his own daughter.  He has never tried to replace her dad and her real dad sees her every week. 

Hubby automatically knew when he took us on with 2 boisterous puppies to boot that he would become her friend before her parent.  He did not step into any of those arguments until he had lived with us for 8 months and since then has raised his voice only twice at her.  That is enough to stop Beautiful B in her tracks, because Oh Dear if Hubby shouts, someone stepped over the line.  Now he is her is her stepdad, he gained that respect the hard way and he first taught Beth how to calm down and think rationally about what went wrong*** and then to sit down as a family and discuss it and come out the other side with hugs and kisses.  So I have Hubby to thank also for being the wonderful natural father that he is.

Now she does all of this automatically. I have not raised my voice to Beautiful B for nearly 12 months, I haven't had to.  Yes, I get frustrated sometimes and I let the lack of chore completion go more than I should but then I was mean and made her get a part time job to learn some responsibility on top of her college work. 

Those worst days were truly awful.  Awful for her, tremendously so and awful for me when counsellors had to tell me time and time again that I had been a good mother that she needed some coping skills.  That she had those family issues to learn how to cope and deal with and I couldn't teach her that but felt guilty for none the less.  That it was natural to feel so totally and utterly useless as a mother.  But seriously, looking back on it the troubles helped shape her to be the person she is today; to be that person who I truly wanted her to blossom into - someone who will without a shadow of a doubt put everyone else before herself.

She is not like other kids, she thinks like an older person and as she has grown in confidence so has her friend base and it is truly lovely to watch.  At the same time, she has a wonderful childish giddy nature about her that is totally and utterly infectious.

Of course, she didn't turn into that person all on her own.  I know that and I don't for one minute think it was just me that did that, I had a huge possy of people that helped but yesterday when the nurse said that it was clear that she had a good role model and having talked to me it was evident that it was me I was shocked but a teensy weensy bit proud even if I did feel guilty for feeling proud****.  When Beautiful B said she couldn't have done it without me I told them all off for making me cry. 

Truly I used to be ambitious career wise.  Now I don't care.  I did what I was put on this earth to do and that was to have a child who grew up to be a wonderful human being.  That, despite every adversity that she continues to struggle with, she picks herself up, dusts herself down and continues to put everyone else first knowing that one day, like yesterday, someone would notice it and tell her just how wonderful she is.

It's not quite the same thing when your mum tells you....

So B, Beautiful B - you came into my life and turned my life upside down.  You were born and were quiet, while the nurses were worrying about your lack of cries you were busy staring at me like I was an alien.  You still do, though now it is more understandable.  I love that you turned my life upside down and continue to do so.  I hate that you go through what you do and I will forever forever feel a little guilt over that at the same time as knowing that I wouldn't have you had I made different decisions and so I know that for me it was worth it.  I only hope that you will look back in years to come and think the same thing.

You make my heart flip.  You make my soul (if I have one) rejoice and I am immensely proud of you and hubby for help shape you and a teensy weensy bit of me for you turning out as you have.

I have no idea where you got your looks from because it wasn't me or your father.  Your lack of height you can blame on me though as I am taller than you I have licence to make jokes about your inability to reach normal countertops.....

I think I do not show how much I love you as much as I should (and you would probably get sick of it if I did) but I do try and work on it.  It's hard to put that emotion for reasons I will keep to myself (unless I am crying at Greys Anatomy or similar) but know that I love you with every single fibre of my being and I know that you know it.  I would walk to the ends of the universe for you (and that is saying something seen as I find it hard to walk 3 miles) always for any reason.

You are my world, you were the minute you came into it and you will be forever.  I am so proud of the way you are, your loving caring nature, you put the rest of us to shame.  Know that, as a result, some will use you and walk all over you - dust them off and don't let it teach you to treat people with any less love and respect than you do now.  More people will love you as the person you are than those that will use you.

At the same time (I have to say this because I am your mum) don't take so much sh*t off people who treat you badly.  You are a wonderful person and deserve to be treated as you treat others.  If they cannot do that, they don't deserve you.

Now go and feed the dogs, put the bins out and do the back garden. 

Love you munchkin, til all the stars fall out of the sky!  xx

*     to the moon and back (because it can't be til the stars fall out of the sky because that is how much she loves me)
**   now I couldn't even begin to imagine where she gets that from....
***  Trust me, he taught me the same thing.  I have lost count over the number of times he has let the situation calm down and then asked me whether I thought what I did/said was right
**** yes, I am aware that I have a guilt obsession, I even know what helped cause it, now at least I recognise the guilt for what it is, I just haven't learnt how to let it go yet

Tuesday, 1 February 2011

How Sore......

So peeps - quick update on my fitness resolution.

The weight loss is coming on well.  I don't have the legs I want yet but they are smaller than they were* which is all good. 

Last week I decided to up the fitness and join some exercise classes.  Now, I love Step, love it - I did lots and lots of it a few years ago.  Some women say it bulks their legs up; not me - mine look great** with Step assistance.  No problems there other than not having the co-ordination to turn around lots wandering over the step and back again.

The next day I gave Thighs, Tums and Bums a shot.  Now this is another I love - I would recommend this to anyone - the definition you get in those oooooh so stubborn areas is quite remarkable.  The only problem is the first time you do it it hurts.  It hurts when you are doing it but the next day you get out of bed as usual and your legs say "Whoooo there lady, I DON'T think so!!!!"

That bad enough for ya!  No?  I didn't think so.  Cue the next day when your body doesn't even want to let you turn over to get out of bed because your stomach joins in with your legs.  And don't even think about laughing because your stomach beats you up for doing it.

So you manage to pull yourself out of bed only to not be able to stand up properly.  So you shuffle across the bedroom, hunched over trying to straighten up while your Hubby says "Do you need a zimmer frame honey?"

Oh and the shockwave that runs up your legs through your calves EVERY time you take a step shows you just how much of a shock absorber your muscles usually are and you become thankful for them every single day.

Then you have to cancel the Step class the next day because you have only just managed to walk without groaning and think it might be a bit too much to put your body through.

Fantastic fun though.  Do it again?  You bettcha - your body can't hurt as much next time***

And by 2 days after that your body is fully recovered to go to Zumba and shake (attempt to) shake the booty like a good un!

*  unless I have been on a train or a plane and lets face it the chances of a plane trip are less than that of winning the lottery
** when I am approximately 9 stone not the current weight
*** I say this using previous knowledge and therefore am right!

My Own Very Own Copy!!

Whoop.  I have my very own copy!  "Of what?" you all shout.  Well the Annual Accounts of course.  Now granted that is not a lot to be excited about but trust me I should feel honoured.  In these days of austerity, only those directly involved in publishing accounts and using them daily get their very own published copy.

So......I guess some might say that is not be a good thing; it means I will come to know them intimately over the next year or two and should expect to know and understand what is in them.  Some of it is a foreign language at the moment which some may be concerned about.

Having got a better idea of what publishing some of the largest accounts in the country takes yesterday afternoon all I could say to my boss was "You don't get paid enough!"  After all she has been doing this almost single handedly!

Luckily, I am already seeing a challenge that I am going to relish and am optimistic at just how much I am going to learn.  I am still a little astounded at how much work is going to be expected from just 2-3 people but then I remind myself that for the last 2-3 years (if not longer) this work has been done by 1-2 people and that quite frankly amazes me!

It is strange to know that there are people working in the same grade, on the same pay grade whose work is at different ends of the spectrum but to see it in action is interesting.  So far, I am realising that whilst the next two years are going to be some of the hardest of my career they will also help define it and give me some excellent building blocks for the rest of it.

Ask me around the beginning to mid July whether I still have the same opinion and you may get some garbled crazed response but so far, so good.

Remind me to tell you about my emotional exit from my last team.  Now as nutty and opinionated as I can be it is rare to see me get that way at work let alone admit to it!