Almost daily diary!

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Rabbit or Turkey, the choice is yours!

I took the darn rabbit to the vets again this morning. Well actually, I took her to the dentist first. I wasn't quite concentrating properly and when I parked outside the dentist surgery, Tall Girl, who always enjoys a good vets visit, asked what we were doing there! I suddenly realised I should be at the vets instead, which is only two streets away, so off we dashed - drove very carefully because the white fluffy thing slips about in her box- and arrived for her appointment in the nick of time.

During a vets visit there is always a glimmer of hope that the current problem from which she is suffering won't have a cure. However there is no end to modern veterinary medicine it seems! After having paid for a course of 3 injections recently for the mite problem, which was making her fur drop out in clumps and which haven't quite done the trick, the vet now informed me that I need some drops of stuff to put behind her ears. Probably as expensive as Channel no.5 but not quite as fragrant! Anyway I have to pick it up tomorrow, yet another trip, and pay him then. You wouldn't believe how much that rabbit has cost over the last 18 months!

Then, the nit children arrived. More medical traumas in store, I thought, as the nit boy cheerfully announced that he has a skin infection! A skin infection? OMG he's the one giving it to the rabbit after all!

So what next for 2009? Plague and pestilence in abundance in BS9! Happy New Year by the way, just in case I expire before tomorrow!

Monday, December 29, 2008

So what did you do with yours?

The turkey I mean! What did you do with it?

By the second day of cold meat here, Husband had had enough. However the children didn't seem to notice they were eating the same thing over and over again, and I'm perfectly happy with the whole thing! Partly laziness on my part I think, because it's there and it's food so why not eat it? And also, while there is turkey left, I don't have to think of anything else to cook. However, tonight the Turkey Curry used up the very last bits. Shame really!

Anyway, in answer to some of your questions, yes, the small box under the tree contained my mothers ring, made by her father. It is very plain and also very precious. Thanks Mum. Strangely enough there were no leopard skin items anywhere to be seen, bless her, and she did spoil me this Christmas (as she always does because I am an only child you see!)

My favourite presents were my ring obviously, as well as a coat that mum bought me (told you I was spoilt), the champagne which Nephew arrived with and a candle which burns here next to my puter.

What was your best gift and why?

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Cloud Watching

Sleep is supposed to be a great healer, and Small Sprog slept through most of the night last night without too much coughing. Hopefully the hospital visits are over, and thanks for all of your concern recently, it has kept me going!

I have also caught up on my sleep a little and lazed in bed awhile this morning, with the curtains open, watching the clouds whip passed the window in the sharp northeast wind, making pictures in the sky. The colours mauve and grey with blue sky beyond were beautiful to see.

Lying on my side, staring out with my thoughts far away, I felt Husband put his arm over me (rather than around). It felt awkward, a strangers arm, with nowhere to go. I lay still, and although I could have turned over and regained something that is lost, I choose to cloud watch instead, very quietly, until the time had passed and I was alone again.

Time here is moving more slowly than in most places. There is a large cloud on the horizon and I am not sure when it will finally approach, how long can I leave it, how long will it take, or if I am strong enough to make it through the storm?

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Supercharged Small Sprog

Today and yesterday have gently merged into each other with another hospital run for Small Sprog at 3 am this morning. Both of us are severely sleep deprived, but at this moment he is driving his remote control helicopter around the sitting room! The drugs they give him in hospital make his heart race, a little like a caffeine rush I assume, so it is a sleep deprived but supercharged Small Sprog which lives here today! It would be funny, if it had not been such a long night.

Luckily the adult to child ratio here has been a little better than normal, with Small Sprogs cousin, who has just left, taking the pressure off and playing with him endlessly. When Small Sprog is like this he has a butterfly mind and it takes quite a bit of keeping up with- Lego, wii, helicopters, marbles, wii, Lego, wii, helicopters -can you see what I mean?

Tomorrow (should we be lucky enough to stay away from the hospital tonight) we have a duty call to see Mother in Law in Devon. These visits are often fraught, Husband will be tense but I am passed caring now! She no longer upsets me as she once did. The bonus is that Small Sprog might sleep in the car, therefore catching up a little, and I am hoping against hope that his 'superchargedness' will have dwindled to a mild rev!

Friday, December 26, 2008

A day of two halves

Early this morning I took Small Sprog into hospital. It is years since his asthma has been unmanageable but today was a wake up call. It was quite surreal to drive through deserted Bristol streets to Frenchay Hospital. He was so good. The nurses and doctors were , as always, just wonderful and we couldn't have had better care.

By the time we got home it was nearly time for Husbands nephew to arrive and his arrival was such good medicine for us all. He came bearing gifts which were thoughtful and sweet, it is good to have him here.

Game of Mario Kart anyone?!!

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Just a little bit of magic under the tree.

My grandfather, on my mothers side, was a Watchmaker all his life. He made jewelry for his loved ones too.

This year, under my Christmas tree, is a very small little parcel. Attached to the Very Small Box is a Large Gift Tag which says "To My Lovely Daughter, All My Love Mum x"

I think I know what is inside! The box is small enough to contain something which was made for my mother, a ring made lovingly by my grandad, her father, many years ago. It does not fit her any more and she offered it to me recently, but I couldn't take it from her. I hope that is what is inside. It will go together with some earrings that I have in safe keeping, which belonged to my grandmother............ I wonder.

Tall Girl and I lay down near the tree tonight and sifted through the brightly coloured packages. She was happy, I was enjoying her company. It was a special moment to remember.
There is still just a little bit of magic under the tree.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

The night before Christmas

Tall Girl has always been a clingy child. I could never have lost her in a crowd when she was little, not that I'd have wanted to. She was always there beside me, clinging. She is shy and nervous, but will blossom one day I'm sure.

So.........The thought of Father Christmas coming into her room to fill her stocking was always something she faced with trepidation! She has always hung her stocking downstairs in the hope that there will be no strange man crossing her threshold on Christmas Eve. On the other hand Small Sprog has no fear at all. He positively wants Santa to wake him up with a HO HO HO! So Tall Girl is not happy, was not happy. For Santa needs to pass her open bedroom door on the landing, to get to her brothers room. This was a cause of worry to her every Christmas Eve. So what to do?

Last year I could stand it no longer. She still believed (at 11 years of age) and got more anxious as the years went by!

Now Christmas and Santa are supposed to be pleasurable. I watched her struggle for sleep on Christmas Eve last year and thought, for goodness sake why don't I tell her it's not true? She'll sleep much better and will enjoy Christmas so much more.

Now what mother tells her first born child that Santa is not real on Christmas Eve?! Well I did, and it was the best thing I ever did. The look of relief on her face and the smile were worth all the worry of breaking a dream. She was incredulous. It was mummy all along? The relief washed over her and she slept like a baby for the first time I could remember on Christmas Eve. She has also been true to her word and not 'spilt the beans' to Small Sprog, who will still put carrots out of the attic window on Christmas Eve, just in case the reindeer fancy a snack.

In case I don't get here again before The Big Day

Merry Christmas

It's been so good getting to know you this year :)

Sunday, December 21, 2008

The Sunday Before Christmas

I experienced a brief escape from suburbia to the Forest today. Though the day was grey and wintry, it matched my mood as the trees and fields sped past. I turned up the volume in the car but it was turned down again and I was reminded that I have no autonomy here. I closed my eyes, felt the comfort of the cars vibration and slipped easily into my own thoughts of an oasis there.

Later on we arrived at my sister in laws and I realised that being in company is the perfect solution to my mood. Husbands nephew, who is 31, was there and we have not met for quite a while. I enjoy his company and so do the children. Four generations under one roof, and a dog! What more could I ask for? Communication is a great healer. We tell stories and exchange views. I am now coveting Nephews i phone and so is Small Sprog, who has a definite talent for 'tilting' games!

Nephew is in a finished relationship but unable to escape. His parents are obviously worried. As I leave, my sister in law talks over her worries. "Nothing ever stays the same" I tell her, "Something will happen" and I realise, as I speak, that I am not thinking of his relationship but of my own.

Saturday, December 20, 2008


Siting up in bed with Tall Girl, staring out into the grey which was morning, I listened to her observations about one of the houses opposite. It's the house that is attached to the Single Woman Doctors house. This one who gets dressed in the morning VERY close to her bedroom window!

The house next door to hers has recently been renovated by a single bloke, who obviously has building connections, and he is now living there alone (mostly!). I am not very observant and wouldn't be able to tell you what he looked like, but Tall Girl seems to have 'clocked' him once or twice.

"His blinds are always shut mummy" She commented today
"Are they?"
"Yes, and he has a really big car, and a really big telly and a really big extension"
Quite some credentials then, I mused!

Whilst writing, Small Sprog is dancing around the kitchen, chanting "Tesco, every little helps!"interspersed with the ASDA advert "It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas!"

He's a walking TV disaster at the moment! He has seen far to much telly while he has been poorly. It seems that this morning, he is feeling a little better, and excitement for the coming days is mounting. Can he sustain this level of anticipation I wonder? I think perhaps he can, the question is... can I?!

Friday, December 19, 2008

Mad Mother!

My mother appeared out of the blue yesterday. She whirl winded in as always, muttering something about parcels and corners and careful driving. When I deciphered her drift, it turned out that she had loaded the car up with things to deliver, including some wrapped up parcels, which she placed on the roof of the car while she was loading up the back. She left home and drove some distance before stopping at some traffic lights. As she was waiting for the lights to change, a man walked over to her car and retrieved the parcels from the roof, handing them to her through the car window. "He didn't seem to think it was funny" She laughed whilst telling me. "Probably thought you were completely barking"I retorted! Well, you have to speak as you find don't you!! However it does go to prove that she doesn't drive quite as dangerously as I thought she did, having negotiated several corners without leaving her treasure in the gutter!

Monday, December 15, 2008

Up date!

I have not blogged so often recently and I guess I'm not the only one at this time of year when so much is going on. So a few updates from Suburbia:

Yesterday my natural father and his wife visited for tea. They always come at this time of year, close to Christmas and dads birthday. They always come bearing gifts and their slippers, which always makes me laugh. Dad was a bit down because his friend of 66 years died a few days ago and the funeral is on dads birthday. He will be reminded every year, now, on his birthday of his close friend. I feel for him, he is very sensitive like that. Anyway it was nice to see them and he cheered up after a while.

I watched Small Sprog perform in his Christmas concert at school last Friday. He hated performing at his last school, mostly, I think, because they were expected to go on stage without rehearsing very much and he hated feeling ill equipped for the job. However his new school have been practicing for weeks. He has informed me that he has 'completely conquered' his stage fright, bless him and he seemed to enjoy the whole thing, which is really the point I think. He should have performed again tonight, but is home poorly with the beginnings of a nasty cold.

The children are counting down the days now until Christmas. It all seems a bit unreal this year, I peeked to early as I knew I would!!!

Saturday, December 13, 2008

The Tree

It was tree decorating day today, a family event (well almost!). Small Sprog was up with the lark because of the excitement. However before the event he wanted to go to his school Christmas Fair. Tall Girl and I went along to. Small Sprog spent most of his pocket money on things he could eat and Tall Girl munched on mince pies. Someone wafted past me with a tray of mulled wine, which was quite irresistible! While Tall Girl and I sat down and watched the world go by, Small Sprog went in search of friends and fun. He was like a whippet, no sooner had we arrived than I had lost sight of him. Anyway, he came home happy, if not just a little overdosed on sugar!

So, it was tree time! We unpacked the decorations and I prepared myself! "OK" I said before we started "What's the golden rule of tree decorating?" Small Sprog was taking no notice at all and was rummaging in another bag. I looked at him pointedly! "Only one decoration on each branch" Said Tall Girl dutifully! "And not clumped altogether!" I added! "Small Sprog, that means you!"
No reply of course! How could he listen and rummage full of excitement in the boxes and bags for his favourite decorations? Tall Girl raised her eyes to the ceiling and tutted. I didn't remind her that not long ago, she was the one overloading the branches!

The door bell rang, it was one of the nit children. Oh well, I think, I guess a bit more help can't make it any worse, but Tall Girl comes back alone. "Where is she then?" I ask
"Well I was just talking to her and her tooth fell out!" Says Tall Girl "So she's gone home"
That would be an odd thing to happen if you were an adult, I think to myself, but as a child, it's just a normal event. Anyway, back to the tree.........

Sibling rivalry took over in no time. "No, not there"
"That's mine"
"Put it there!
A lovely Christmas Tradition, as you can see!
"Daddy, are you coming to decorate the tree?" Asks Small Sprog
"Why break the habit of a lifetime" Muttered Tall Girl
We all laugh, but underneath it all, we know it's true. I'm not sure why it's always just the three of us, but that is the way it is.

PS. Apparently, there is a tradition, on the other side of Bristol, where you just lob the decoration box at the tree, job done. A thought for next time maybe!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Christmas Chopping!

After work today I went to finish my Christmas shopping. I needed to get something for my mum. What do you buy for the woman who has everything? The answer is....... A chopping board, apparently. "What size?" I asked her last night on the phone.
"Just like my melamine one" she replied.
"Oh no, I don't like those ones, I want another melamine one!"
Well this is the twenty first century, I'm not sure you can still get melamine, I wanted to retort but kept my mouth firmly shut!
So, off I went to John Lewis (because it's not far to go), to see if melamine is still 'in'! Well what do you think??
I did ask and no one seemed to know what I was talking about -although that is quite normal right now! So I ended up with something else that looked fairly durable. I wonder if she'll like it?

Thanks to everyone who commented below. You will have to keep guessing I'm afraid! Suffice to say that I am still reeling slightly. The evidence is all around me! I have just gone out to the kitchen because I could smell a slight burning and realised I had put some leeks on to slowly saute awhile ago, oops! On the way out of the kitchen I realised I was carrying a coldish cup of tea in one hand, and a glass of wine in the other!! Things in Suburbia are still a bit 'tilted'.

Sunday, December 07, 2008

Pre Christmas

Today I have sustained a Christmas tree injury! I dropped the trunk on my finger, ooch, it still hurts. We don't usually get a tree this early, but seeing as they all seem to be cut at the beginning of October anyway, there seemed to be little reason to wait, although it probably won't come indoors until later in the week.

We follow the same routine every year. Pick up the first tree, look at it, say "That's a nice one" and then pick up at least ten more before agreeing (or not) that the one we first saw was the best. We go back for it but where did it go?! This year we nearly just bought the first one anyway, to save all the trouble, but old habits die hard. "We can't possibly buy the first tree we've seen, lets look at some more." This time Small Sprog 'guards' the first one (his idea). Then we see another which is Just The Right Shape. Oh it's a mine field out there!

Meanwhile Small Sprog has put up the nativity scene. Not a Star Trouper in sight........unless you look very, very closely, is that a droid hanging from the stable roof?

And to add to the chaos that sometimes befalls this family, the dish washer has given up the ghost. Damn it. Husband thinks I should go and buy a new one tomorrow, but I think I have better things to do with my day off.

Saturday, December 06, 2008


This morning Tall Girl and I took the bunnies to the vets. Ruby rabbit has mites, so she was poked with a needle and told to come back in 10 days for another, £30 for that, damn rabbits cost a fortune!

Later on we had the 'Nit Children' from down the road, here to play. Another £10 on organophosphate needed sometime in the future most likely!

The youngest 'nit child' is a girl, she is Small Sprogs age. The oldest is a boy, he is the same age as Tall Girl. He hangs around a bit when Tall Girl is about, which is kind of cute. However, because she is so tall for her age, the boy nit child is very much shorter than her!

They have played here and up and down the street for most of the day and in and out of each others houses too. The boys play and the girls play separately. However the boy nit child is never far behind Tall Girl.

This evening she has come home with various new tunes on her phone, downloaded from nit boys phone. Also some ring tones which say 'fuck', a lot! Small Sprog was singing them at dinner time. He knows it's a ''bad'' word, but is confident that I won't tell him off for using it. I do try to be liberal with them! He is aware that he must not say the words anywhere else or in front of other adults. I trust him and he has not let me down so far. I do remember being his age and hearing this word, knowing it was 'wrong' but not knowing what it meant or why I shouldn't use it. They both are fully versed in the meaning and do not use it in there everyday vocabulary. I hope I have done the right thing.

Anyway, at tea time I was chatting to Tall Girl about her new tunes. "You know Nit Boy fancies you don't you?" I said to her, thinking she was totally unaware of the whole thing as she acts very nonchalantly when he's around.
"I know" She said in a matter of fact voice, and flounced off!
Ah! She is further advanced than I thought!

Thursday, December 04, 2008

Another moment form suburbia

Everyday, when I pick Small Sprog up from school, he says the same thing;
"When I get home can I have a sweetie?" No niceties like "Hi mum have you had a nice day?" Nope, he has one thing on his mind. Food!

My reply is always the same. "Yes just one, but you have to wash your hands first!" (I hope I don't pass on my OCD, about clean hands and food, to him in later years!)

However today was different. When I arrived to pick him up he said "Mum, when I get home, can I have an orange?" Yay! All the talk about healthy eating at home and at school has sunk in at last! I ruffle his curls and smile......My Boy!

On the way home I asked him what he had had for dinner. "Lots of lovely stuff" Was the reply. Today it was roast Beef and Yorkshire Pud and, just to finish it off, there was his other favourite, Jelly! So he was a very happy Small Sprog. As we got out of the car and unlocked the front door he said "Mum, can I have a sweetie?" Oh well, at least the thought was there for a second.

No sooner had we walked through the front door than Tall Girl texted me. "Where are you?" She messaged. Damn it, she was supposed to be getting off in the village to do her Christmas shopping and phoning me later when she wanted to be picked up. Small Sprog had only just reached for the sweetie jar and it was snatched from his clutches immediately!

So off we go again, (he had an orange in the back of the car and didn't complain) back out into the cold to pick her up at the same place we had picked her up the night before. When we arrived she was nowhere to be seen. "I'd take that mobile off her" Says a small voice from the back of the car!

I get out my phone and call her, 3 times. Eventually she answered. "Where are you?" I asked and continued "I'm where I was yesterday, the meeting place, and you are??!"

By this time I can see her at the top of the road. "Run!" I shout down the phone, laughing as see her break into a vague trot!

Is this just a taste of things yet to come? I think it maybe. Hayho! I guess I'll just add 'general taxi service' to my (rather long) job description.

And the photo? Nothing to do with anything really! I just thought I haven't put one on here for a while, so here is the sunset on a lovely, but cold beach, taken on the day the clocks changed in October. It'll soon be the shortest day and then we can look forward to summer, yay!

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

De-lurk here!

I have seen a great idea at 365 to 42's blog, so I hope he doesn't mind that I'm borrowing it.

So all you lurkers out there, i.e. people who visit but don’t leave a comment, I have a little questionnaire for you - and also for the regular commenter's (because you know how nosy I am!) :

1. Who are you and where are you from? (mainly for the lurkers)

2. What will you be doing today?

3. What do you wish you had planned instead?

4. What’s the thing you’re looking forward to most?