Posts Tagged ‘friends’

Queries on how to get Princess Consuela Banana Hammock in a see through laminate pouch.

January 11, 2013

Okay, folks, I need input and/or assistance. Any help is appreciated!

1. name changes
We want TMD to change her last name to mine. The kids’ names are Coconut/Snort MeaningfulMiddleName TMDlastnameassecondmiddlename Mylastname. In retrospect I think I’d have preferred to take her name, but in actual fact my last name is fairly peppy and easy for the kids to read already.

I mentioned this morning she ought to get on this whole name thing, so we can all have the same last name on the birth certificates. She just texted to say that all she has to do is start using my name, as our civil partnership is the only proof required for a name change, no other official stuff needs to happen. Any married peeps, gay or straight but definitely in the UK, have info? Is this correct?

2. laminated officialdom
I joined a well known home education charity in August, mainly to get the little laminated membership cards as many places ask for ‘proof’ before offering a discount, despite the fact that home educators are under no requirements to register or join any networks. This charity appears to be in a royal clusterfuck and we’ve not received our cards, so I think I’d like to just make my own little card (which I’ll post on the blog for anyone who wants to have one!) with a blurb about the law.

As previously mentioned, we have no printer. Does anyone out there have a printer and a laminating machine and is willing to print out a few cards, laminate, and post them to us? I can pay costs.

(Yes, I know I can explain no proof is required or universally available, but I prefer to wimp out and just offer a card.)

3 tidying up
No, you don’t need to come to our house to clean. This is more to say a huge thank you to all the new readers that have reached out in comments or otherwise! I really appreciate it and, to be honest, get all fluttery when I get a new comment.

Also thank you to those of you who have commented with helpful suggestions for the whole swimming thing. One of you, someone we are privileged to have actually met and hung out with a few times, despite her living on the other side of the globe, suggested these little rubber bracelets with animals on for Coconut’s swimming lesson. I have ordered them and just hope they arrive by next Wednesday!

4. favours returned
Is there something I can do for YOU? Do you have questions about anything you’ve read here? Drop me a comment and I’ll do my best to help you out!


January 4, 2013

This is probably the longest I’ve ever gone without blogging. Here is  my litany of excuses…I mean, updates:

  • Aussie came to stay with her two little ones – Walnut and Travolta. Snort and Coconut were overjoyed to have their friends back, with the addition of a cute baby to fawn over. Since their departure, Walnut and Spiderman play a very big part in bedtime stories, by request. Aussie got sick, as did her kids. Before I realised just how sick she was, I ate some leftovers from a bowl she’d had. That is what Got Me Very Sick. Luckily neither of my kids fell prey.
  • The aforementioned Very Sick.
  • Those Christmas stockings. I’m not sure whether to use ‘fucking’ or ‘amazing’ as the adverb to describe them. I stayed up till 1:30 am on Christmas Eve morning so the kids could get them a day early and their splendor not lost amidst a haze of presents. You guys, they are beautiful. So beautiful that I would seriously have commissioned someone to make us stockings if I saw these as a sample. Don’t get any ideas, though. I’m not about to open a business. But they are perfect, exactly what I wanted, and handstitched to last a lifetime.
  • iPad. Since my sister gave me her hand-me-down iPad in the summer, blogging has taken a bit of a hit for me. Not only because of soul destroying games like Candy Crush Saga, but also because I write longest and best on a real keyboard.
  • Adventures – lots of them. New giant playgrounds, train rides with Santa, museum trips, and on and on and on.
  • Me. When TMD is home, literally all I want to do is lie in bed and read….if I can avoid Candy Crush Saga. I am seriously debating whether something is medically wrong with me, the amount of time I could just lie in bed and luxuriate. However, I am lax to take these wonderings seriously, because I think the only thing I could be diagnosed with is Parenting Young Children (PYC). I hear PYC is a well known and documented creator of exhaustion.

I’m sure I have more excuses tucked away here or there, but largely I’ve had a good few weeks. TMD has been home from work for an extended holiday break – we celebrate Christmas in a purely secular way, for those who wonder, and will probably celebrate Yule next year as well – and it’s been amazing having her home. She’s had a chance to dabble in our daily lives – trips to a cafe for shortbread, children ripping the house apart, etc. I wish we were independently wealthy so she could be here ALL THE TIME.

My other wish is a for a nice, reliable printer. We haven’t had one for a good long while, but as we get further into our home education journey, I realise just how useful one would be. I am also attracted to one that would print photos (though I suppose they all do, nowadays, ye whippersnappers) but only if that is actually cheaper than paying someone else to print them.

Have you all had a nice holiday? Lots of holiday angst…I mean, joy? I sincerely hope so. I know *I* had a great time hanging out with the relatives I just unfriended on facebook, namely because I clearly made my BIL very uncomfortable. I am sad about this. But as TMD says, all we need is an apology and we’re back in business.

In other news, my little sister is moving to Country B (!) possibly this month (!) and while she’ll be in the capitol, she’ll hopefully live on OUR side of it so she’ll be a mere two hours away. Very different from 7,000 miles away! She is a techie sort of gal, so we will be entering the land of more blogging, perhaps. If we aren’t constantly in the capital stalking Lady and her kids and visiting my sister! The kids’ schedule now involves classes of one sort or another on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, which is perhaps not ideal for visits.  We also have a weekly home ed group on Thursdays that lasts all day, but that is totally optional and does not cost six million gazoombas per term.

And one more thing. Our new Wednesday activity is swimming, and we started this week. I don’t know what I expected, but it was not that my children were, in fact, adults. Three of the five kids in the class are totally new to swimming lessons, and so I expected some sort of water confidence build up. But no, lo and behold, we are preschoolers (or preunschoolers, in our case!!), and 3-4 year olds are hardcore. It was one teacher and assistant, no parents required. Swimming laps from the get go. LAPS. I know. They looked so grown up and awesome!

Snort and Coconut were fucking STARS. While I don’t much hold with giving automatic respect to someone just because they are an adult, I did explain that water can be dangerous, which is why you need a grown up helper. I explained their helper would be the swimming teacher, and they listened and followed instructions…and most importantly, just BEAMED the whole time. When they weren’t making their concentration faces, anyway. It couldn’t have gone better, especially as they are by far the youngest in the group, and I look forward to next week.

Coco did swallow a bit of water when she went under, and was not well pleased, so that may be a hiccup. But judging by the amount of imaginative play devoted to swimming lessons since Wednesday, I think we’re okay.

Nothing says awesome like day18, 19, or 20 of my menstrual cycle.

December 10, 2012

I gained three pounds on holiday. Not too bad, considering I found out they had Oreo milkshakes on offer.

Not too bad until you consider that when numbers go up on the scale, I get in a funk and usually lose motivation for a week. So, yeah, I gained three pounds this week, too. Pretty awesome, hey? In two weeks I managed to undo all the weight loss of the previous five weeks! Score! And then I stopped writing here because I was embarrassed.

My preperiod crazies were in full force last week, which contributed to my inability to stay on track. They probably also contributed to a rageful frenzy of unfriending relatives on Facebook (after months and months of just ignoring ongoing criticism I decided it was better to avoid them online).

But it also contributed to my making a big point of reaching out to much loved and longlasting friends, and I talked on the phone, skyped, texted, emailed to my heart’s content. We also met up with Lauren and her daughter (actually, that was a day or so before the crazy really kicked in!), which was nice and a reminder of how busy and fun days can be when you leave the house for day long epic adventures.

I also spent some time yesterday creating new home education picture thingies, one of which is BEAUTIFUL but I won’t post here as you can see the kids’ butts. I’ve also started the Christmas stockings, which look nice and have given me something to focus on in the off moments when I am not shoving food in my mouth. Ha.

But tomorrow…

Tomorrow is a big, big day.

Aussie is coming to our house with Walnut and her new baby, who has not been nicknamed by me yet. They are visiting from Australia and staying at our house until Saturday night!! We cannot wait. I also can fit ALL of us comfortably in my car, so that’s cool. Secretly Aussie and I are hoping the three older kids keep each other distracted away from us, the long suffering adults, so we can hide and drink tea. Her baby can just stay attached to her boob, so that means she and I can PARTY.

You know, when we aren’t actually paying attention to our gaggle of three year olds. It will be such a relief and joy to see her.

That awkward moment when you hope a new friend doesn’t secretly think you suck, because you wrote a whole blog post about how much she does NOT suck.

November 18, 2012

How are your Sundays going? Oh, good to hear, excellent. Mine? Well, you know, it’s just your run of the mill meeting of a new friend that you happen to LOVE as much in real life as you do in emails/texts. So, really, not run of the mill at all.

About a week ago, though it feels much longer, this woman commented on the blog that she’d been reading for ages (I need to think of a suitable blog name. Her real name screws me up because for a brief period in time it was THE name we were going to name Coconut!), and the next thing you know there’s like an instant friendship. I am a very sociable person, but I have to say it takes a lot for me to become real friends with someone. I can hold back in regards to initiating things, texting,etc.

This lady* was bizarre (in a nice way) because it felt easy from the get go. You guys, I smell real friendship in all its poop flavoured, panini tasting, random conversations sort of way. And she has twins! I managed not to bite, squeeze, or eat her babies today, though it was hard.

Of course, her ass doesn’t live in our town. There is only one of you that lives in our town, and that is the problem. More of you people should move here immediately! We could form a commune of people with free range children, hot chocolate, and puddle stomping. So seriously consider it.

I guess there ends my friendship crush entry of the day. Every time I meet someone I like I just feel a weird relief, I have to say. Hoping to see more of her and her delicious children soon….also hoping I thaw out from our afternoon outdoors sometime soon.

*My kids call all women ‘ladies.’ I feel all gross and not feminist like at ALL, so I am trying to introduce the word ‘woman’ into their vocabulary. Imagine my horror when I referred to someone as a lady accidentally in this entry! Ladies are either older, slightly disheveled cat lovers or women wearing hoop skirts and trying to marry into a good family. I must break this habit. I must!

Water car crashes take two, friends, and DIY plaster cast fixes.

November 13, 2012

My Facebook profile was the source of very funny and detailed discussions regarding the whole car crashing into the water thing. In addition to the handful of people who knew where I was coming from, including a friend who actually refuses to drive over water without opening a window, there was more than a few who took the absolute piss out of me.

Especially when someone else said we might as well drive wearing life jackets, when I raised the non-swimming children issue. Another person suggested just always driving with the windows all down, since those life jackets would keep us warm. The same friend mocked a picture of me sat in our parked car yesterday, telling me to watch out for water…because you never know.

She is right. You DON’T ever know.


In other news, coconut’s cast seems to be slowly unravelling. It’s gone softer and softer, and the edge of the hard plaster bandage part is coming off. I used a glue stick to attempt to stick it back on. Wasn’t very successful. I guess my Dr Google medical training is defunct because it didn’t tell me to keep medical grade plaster of Paris in the house at all times.

Regardless, her unravelling cast, her, Snort, and I had a lovely morning at a local city farm with the little girl Coconut classes as her best friend. Lots of autumnal leaf throwing, delicious cafe food (for the grown ups, anyway. The kids were only interested in chips/fries.), and a nice walk. Sunday we are meeting another new friend in a place I’ve been wanting to go since we moved here. She described it as a sort of outdoor utopia. Let’s hope the weather is nice.

I was thinking this morning about building my own tribe. I am steadily meeting more and more people I really like. We are getting out and about a lot. Broken arms and snotty noses aside, things are good.

Building a community of cool kids.

October 5, 2012


You know how you know people online but rarely get to meet all the cool people out there? Since moving to our new city, we have been lucky enough to meet a fellow blogger-turned-friend who lives here, too. And Coconut may or may not be obsessed with her child, who I will call Smiley.

I swear, you guys. ‘I miss Smiley! I wish we could go to Smiley’s house and jump on her bed. I wish Smiley could come here and jump on our beds. I am really, really sad. I miss Smiley and her mummy!’

This morning I showed the kids the two pictures on this post, which Smiley’s mum took on Wednesday, and Snort was like, ‘Oh! it’s our friend!’ Coconut, on the other hand, started crying and begging to skip gymnastics so she could go to Smiley’s house instead. Wowza.

Of course, Smiley’s room does have a windowsill to sit on, before launching yourself into forward rolls on the bed. As seen below.


Smiley’s house also has a bathroom where I was quietly peeing before Coconut ran in to see me, and Smiley’s mummy was treated to the sight of me half naked. Twice. I figure that’s enough to make her want to ask us to live with them.

Today is the first day all of our stuff has dried, since our inaugural visit to their house included a walk under blue skies and in the sunshine a half mile down the road to a park. A good time was had by all, until suddenly all hell broke loose and dark grey clouds unleashed their fury. Heavy, gorgeous rain….and hailstones. Smiley was up in a sling, but bless them for not running off and instead ambling along at the pace of two three year olds.

I do feel horrendous about the lack of regular, consistent friendships for the kids (and me!)….though Smiley and her Mummy are my dream. Our kids get along, and I really like Lauren. Family friendships are the holy grail!

Coconut loved Smiley in a powerfully crazy way, but I think her sadness about not seeing her every day is possibly linked to us not having playdates at our house or friends’ houses. Either that or she is going to be a stalker when she grows up.

Other stuff we did not know.

June 1, 2012

Here’s something I didn’t know that you probably didn’t know either. NaNoWriMo has a camp. Oh, yes, my child. In June they have a summer camp version of NaNoWriMo. We’re all ready to write a 50,000 word novel (or the first 50,000 words!), slathered in suncream and signed up for archery lessons.

I want the fucking poster they are selling. I want all the other stuff, too, but the poster is the cheapest and I imagine it to be a great souvenir once this session of camp is over. Have I told you I LOVE CAMP? And I LOVE WRITING?

It’s roughly a 1667 words a day commitment. I just did my first 1675. JOIN ME. Will you join me? Canoe rides with laptops balanced on our laps? Sleepovers and ghost stories? Or, you know, just a few people cursing themselves and trying to write a novel that is going nowhere. With no compasses.

See, it sounds fun. Leave a comment if you’re gonna do it! You can sign up on the site and we can be friends and kick each others asses. Or join my little circle on facebook – myself and a friend have committed to doing it and you are likely to see our daily wall exchanges on the topic if you and I are friends. If we aren’t friends, maybe we should be. Consider it and leave a comment for that shit too, but be warned I’ll probably only friend you if we have chatted online, or I know you from my blog or your blog, and you promise you aren’t an axe murderer.

Because, kids, it’s camping season and everyone knows summer camp is when all the creepy killers come out of the woods and stab you to death in your camp bed.

Um. Okay. So. Writing. Camp NaNoWriMo! This is my first attempt at the camp version of nano, and I *think* I’m looking forward to it.

But now I need to go read The Hunger Games for the fifth time (thank you, wonderful Lynn!) and maybe go pee beforehand just so I can use my new awesome homemade reuseable wipes/family cloth (thank you, wonderful Jinxy! I ADORE them. So soft! I may have even let my butt touch them, and it’s like wiping with a cloud!). I am going to try to stick with nightly writing, though, so that even if I have a heap of crap at the end of the month, I’ll have a heap of crap. You know? Because I can sit on top of my heap of crap reading e-books and wiping myself with nice family cloth.

It all works out in the end.

Welcome to the jungle.

May 29, 2012

This morning I had an interesting thought. It was: Hey, I’m just dressed the way I’d normally dress. No need to change anything or even have a moment’s worry.

Why is this interesting? Well, today we are hoping to meet another blogger who lives in my area. I’ve known her quite some time, and she takes beautiful pictures of her little girl and everything else. She’s coming over to our house this afternoon – and when I told Coconut a little girl named Ivy and her Mama Lauren might come over this afternoon, she replied, ‘Ivy is my best friend!’ What a great way to approach meeting new people.

I think she gets it from me.

I don’t know where this confidence comes from. Ten years ago, hell, maybe even five, I would have been thinking about what sort of impression I wanted to make. What to wear, specifically, which is totally fucked up because I don’t care about things like that in the least.

But this morning I didn’t think about any of that till I was already dressed. Is this the mythical confidence that kicks in during your thirties? Is this the confidence attached to feeling like a great parent? Maybe both.

I could write a veerrrryyy long post about my views – past, present, and future – and attitudes towards social situations and meeting new people. The short story is I was a child with no friends but a very active imaginative life, and now I’m an adult who has shining social skills. I think camp helped me make the transition. I think coming out did, too – I had to OWN who I was, be proud of it, and take major risks in order to live my life.

So here I am today.

When we open the door, Lauren will have to climb over all the fucking toys that will no doubt be coating the floor* by the time she arrives. My children will probably be mostly naked. We still have moving boxes in the dining room. And you know? It’s okay.

I mean, you readers of this blog, you know my trials and tribulations (and love!) of reuseable menstrual cups, my epic battles with pooping during pregnancy, my deep and fragile emotional upheaval around my father. Compared to those things, what the fuck difference does it make what I’m wearing?! Ha.

*Or more likely, on the couch. The kids had a game before we moved where they shoved all the toys into barracades. Just giant piles that divided the room. Snort upped the game by carefully fitting pieces together – so effectively that I would be trapped in the kitchen and unable to break apart these masterpieces. This evolved into playing ‘rubbish truck’ once we moved. They literally pile anything and everything onto chairs, couches, whatever.

We’re talking toy pianos, books, mini chairs, every toy, shoes, etc. NOW this has changed once more into ‘car ride.’ They pack up the car to go for a ride on our big, red couch. They fill every fucking available space, and stack it up with about three feet of random shit. Every single day. So you know, no one can actually make use of the couch for the use it was intended. Though it more often than not is covered in these shit heaps (aka ‘The very special and important things we need for our car ride’) and I want to encourage them to build and create. It causes no harm.

It’s cute. So I may have forgotten what the couch was originally for, but judging by the faces of those who enter our house, I should probably hang up a warning sign or something.


November 10, 2011

As we drove away from Aussie, Walnut, and Mr. Aussie that Saturday I thought would be our last meeting on Country B soil for quite awhile, I cried.

‘I should have hugged her longer. Hugged her again.’

TMD patted my knee when she could, as I found old napkins in the glove box to wipe my eyes on. I cried the whole way home. The whole thing was awful, really. As Coconut and Snort were strapped into their carseats, she held Walnut. He leaned over and pressed his hands to the windows. ‘Bye! Bye! Bye!’ My kids kept waving and blowing kisses and saying bye.

To the kids, it was a normal goodbye.

To the adults, we knew it was a long goodbye. A goodbye that would have to stretch across continents, across the world. A goodbye that held their past years of friendship, and hopefully their future as well.

You’ll have to excuse me. It’s hard to type while my eyes are full of tears. The reminders are everywhere. Written large on our calender are the day they left, the day they arrive in her home country. Snort asks every single day, about twenty times a day, to watch a video of him, Snort, and Walnut having a tea party. Coconut asks for ‘booboo,’ Walnut’s word for breastfeeding.


That Tuesday after we left them, that Tuesday before the Thursday they would leave our country, I sent her a text. I wish we had arranged to meet up again before you left. The next thing you know, I am throwing bags and children into the car and driving ninety minutes. And what a good day! Nothing out of the ordinary, and that’s why it was so good.

Aussie is (was?) my only friend in this country that I talked to every day – even if just by texts complaining about life. She feels like home to me, in a pajama-wearing, honest-talking, call-her-crying-or-laughing kind of way. So to have another ordinary day with our kids chasing each other, having tea parties, flying imaginary planes, eating cake? Priceless. Totally worth the sat nav routing me home through Big City on the way home.

It’s hard on a lot of levels for me. But one major one is the feeling that I’m being left behind. She’s going back to her family, to the place she grew up, to the land where she’s wanted to return for years. She’s been in Country B for nine years. I’ve been here for about eleven or twelve. The difference is, I’m not going back home. I don’t even know if I would want to.

But I long for my parents, my sister. For Cookie. For David. For big trees, freaky birds, that awesome ice cream shop in that little village.For the memories I know we could make if we lived there.

Aussie wondered if visiting us at my parents’ house, some sort of giant reunion of globetrotters with no money to actually trot the globe, would be closer than seeing us in Country B. So I looked on her tiny globe and discovered, much to my amusement and horror, that it was just about exactly halfway across the world.


The world may be getting more globalized, more centralised, more easy to communicate with far flung people. But to me, on this morning, it still feels pretty damn big.

Ugh ugh ugh.

October 29, 2011

Driving back from Aussie’s. She leaves for Australia Thursday, and it will be years before we next see her. I can’t seem to stop crying.