Tuesday, 22 September 2009

More bitter than sweet

As the saying goes it never rains it pours.
Planning permission has been granted for the work at the back of our building. As we still hadn’t received the letter promising 3 months notice agreed in our meeting I tried to call, of course, to no avail, one of the nice (grrrr) officials was unavailable and the other away for a week.
I opened an email from the granddad this morning to news that he may have prostate cancer but not to worry - The GR will be devasted he’s working away from home today and doesn’t know yet.
And now water has just started pouring through one of the ceiling light sockets.
Running away to a Greek island is looking appealing.


September is always a bittersweet month. It holds far too many anniversaries of one sort or another. It starts off well with a cluster of birthdays, ours and friends. I always end up having a clothes emergency mid-month with the change over of seasons. Then it would tail off with the anniversary of my fathers death, when all my siblings would call home to speak to mum. (I’m ten years behind everyone else, so was at home a lot longer). Now it tails off even more with the anniversary of our mother’s death. So like her to be as considerate in death as she had in living and not give us two times of year to get sad.

Clothes Loathe

I’ve hit a clothes loathe. You know when none of your clothes seem to like you anymore. It hasn’t been helped by constantly reading about the ’80’s fashion revival - shoulder pads and leggings? I did it first time round, I’m sure there is a rule about not revisiting.

I don’t like any of my clothes and the ones I do like don’t seem to go with anything else. Action needed to be taken. I mused for a few days, I purchased an almost fashionable top that could be construed to have a padded shoulder, in grey. I tried it on at home and liked the shape (M&S’s online clothes photography is awful in my opinion). Something wasn’t right though, I looked ill. Of course, what was I thinking, I can’t wear grey – it drains the colour from my face and a face that hasn’t had much more than a 3 hourly stretch of sleep for over a year needs all the help it can get.

I’d like to be a classic dresser. I’d like to be mistaken for being French but I’m English and us English girls can’t help but be more ‘Sex and The City’ than ‘Coco Avant Chanel’, so, I’m what I would describe as a kooky/girlie dresser. I’m certainly not one of the ‘but where would I possibly wear it’ brigade. I just wear it. Full length Hawaiian pattern shift dresses, shocking pink froufrou numbers in several sizes too big, held together with a chunky belt, Pucci patterned minis, paisley silk kaftans, I’ll wear them to the pub, to anti-natal classes, to work, to the cinema, or for a walk in the park. In short I’m a frock girl. My mantra is, if there’s only one part to it you can’t really get it wrong and it’s much quicker to get dressed. Heavens I’ve even slept in a cut off ball gown in the back of a car when I was an art student but that’s another story.

What with buying jeans recently too, usually a no-no (long body, short legs) my preference was changing. Perhaps it was after I found myself caressing the hem of a floaty pale blue chiffon number with polka dot overlay and had a flash image of myself as Grayson Perry, no disrespect, he is a great artist but one wouldn’t want to be known for dressing like him.

So I quickly removed myself from the environs of the gossamer affair and whisked up an inky blue tailored shirt with mother of pearl buttons in crisp cotton, a heavier weight cotton mid-calf length half pleated black skirt, a pair of skinny black Levi’s and the most unusual white shirt striped in gold and silver with a great ruffle running around the neck and down the front in a most appealing manner. Very odd choices for me but all for £22.50, I took the plunge without even trying anything on.

I hid the bag behind the high-chair at home and waited for The GR to go to work. The ruffle shirt was strangely pleasing and I had visions of wearing it with the full skirt my hair swept up in a tousled chignon when I realised I would probably look like Laura Ashley circa 1980 and not in a good way. I tried it with the skinny jeans, would have been super if I could get the top two buttons of the jeans fastened – not gonna happen anytime soon, so plumped for a black wool pencil skirt which worked.
The inky blue shirt is a good colour on me, I wore it today with navy shorts and espadrilles, a string of pearls wrapped around my wrist, and Erbie on hip (also in navy).

I went to take the grey top back and get a refund when I saw the same one in black, bother, but bother in a good way, so I exchanged them instead. On my way back I had a quick look in Uniqlo and picked up a dark grey tulip skirt for £14.99, I know what I said about grey, but it doesn’t count next to your legs.

I started looking at boots, and thinking what I’d need to complete my wardrobe and I keep coming back to a dark denim mini skirt and perhaps a boyfriend cardigan, the oversized long ones (in my day they were called granddad!).

When I got home I confronted my wardrobe and put away everything I didn’t think I’d wear over the Winter, dirndl skirts and bright tees and all the stuff I was bored with. Now I have a nicely pared down rail of blues and blacks, a bruising of Winter wear if you will.

Sunday, 20 September 2009

Twiggy is 60

I missed her book-signing in the National Portrait Gallery on Friday, so popped down there on Saturday morning to see the new exhibition of photos spanning forty years to celebrate Twiggy turning 60. Some lovely images from the famous first shot taken of her new crop haircut for the House of Leonard in the sixties, through to a recent portrait by Bryan Adams – yes that Bryan Adams. Worth a look, it’s just at the top of the stairs on the first floor and free.

IMAGE: Barry Lategan

Start of The London Design Festival


Trafalgar Square. A giant chess board by Jaime Hayón, made from Bisazza mosaic.  The first game in the tournament started at 11.30am Saturday morning and will continue for 5 days as part of the seventh London Design Festival.

Friday, 18 September 2009

My life in magazines!

It all started with a Twinkle in my eye or rather my cousin C’s eye. I spent a lot of my childhood at my aunt’s house which was great fun. C and I were the same age, related, blonde and under 10 years of age. C laughed at my jokes and let me share her bedroom. I in return let her warm her icy feet on my legs. My lovely cousin who wore pink and sang in tune like a real girl (I was such a tomboy, and cannot hold a note) had Twinkle magazine delivered every weekend. Delivered no less! I followed suit.

Isn’t she adorable, no wonder I had a crush on Goldie Hawn in Rowan and Martin’s Laugh In.

Photo date: 1969 "Rowan & Martin's Laugh In" Goldie Hawn 1969 NBC Photo by Ed Thrasher - © 1978 Ed Thrasher - Image courtesy mptvimages.com

Next came Bunty, I'm sure via the same route. I remember especially paper cut out dolls. Mmmmmm paper cut out dolls.

Then at secondary school I subscribed to Jackie magazine for a couple of years. I wasn’t interested in Cathy and Clare’s problem page, or the photo story but the occasional illustrated fashion spread. I recall one in particular where a model drawn with white blonde cropped hair wore tight black ski-pants and a  long louchy jumper.

Ah ha I see pattern forming here. Do I mean to tell myself my whole image through art college and most of my twenties was formulated from Twinkle magazine.

I really shouldn't be here

Having had a conversation with the lovely Everybody Says Don’t about how much time blogging takes up what with the reading, commenting let alone posting, I really shouldn't be here. 
I have lots of things to do. I should be checking my work email to see if the suit has forwarded the missing link for me to complete the job for Monday morning. Complete the job which will involve me honing very old and tired skills (with much trial and error) on a computer that doesn't even belong to me in a programme that I barely know my way around - yes, yes, I'm avoiding. I should also be making the casserole I promised The GR for when he arrives home from work at 10pm, tired and hungry, but that involves clearing the kitchen (slob) and putting lights on. I should put Erbie’s toys away and I should really eat something other than oat biscuits and biscuit biscuits. 
I babysat the lovely little Missy for Suki last night while she went to a meeting. I took Erbie over to their flat and the pair of them crawled around, pulled books off shelves and tried to open drawers for an hour. I managed to spill water all over the new board book I’d got Missy as a belated birthday gift causing it to swell up and the pages start to peel apart. Erbie attempted to get up the chimney and Missy took her first steps whilst fake laughing into the telephone.
We shared a lovely glass of red on Suki’s return, whilst both of us gave our our babies their nighttime feed, we’re both as bad as one another! Which reminds me, Suki gave me a lovely bottle of Bordeaux as a thank-you, hmm, that’ll get me in the kitchen to start the casserole in a Keith Floyd like manner.

Wednesday, 16 September 2009

Stunning Business For Sale in South of France

Have just found out our lovely friends Rob and Tracey who lovingly restored and brought back to life this wonderful Hotel de Vigniamont in Pezenas, in the South of France are sadly looking to sell as a successful turn-key B&B business as they have to return to the UK.  

We were there many balmy summers ago before the business was up and running. I remember going with Tracey to buy olive trees for the courtyard. Watching Rob getting the water feature working, so that cool water ran from the mouth of a stony face to a small pool below. The constant see-saw noise of cicadas and chilled rosé in the evenings. Walking around the great city of Pezenas, stopping for a little coffee and buying fruit and vegetables from the market. Tracey talked of setting up an honesty fridge, that she would stock with goodies and wine for guests to help themselves to after hours. There was constant talk of which colour to decorate individual bedrooms and builders having to re-install ensuite bathroom doors to open in rather than our. Floors were too high, sun terraces too exposed but they got there in the end with much hard work. It became one of those charming places to stay coveted by the masses and known by a few. Details of Rob and Tracy’s hospitality and especially Tracy’s amazing cooking were passed on in whispered excitement as if one had found a single remaining place at an exclusive members club.

You just have to read the rave reviews on the website link to see how well it has done, it’s been fully booked since opening. It is well connected with the nearby airports of Beziers and Montpellier. 

So sad they must leave, but a wonderful opportunity for anyone who fancies running an exclusive bed and breakfast in the South of France. 

IMAGE: Hotel de Vigniamont. Guest lounge.
5 rue Massillon, 34120 Pezenas, France.


Chic mama’s comment on my Face off post reminded me that I'd been meaning to tell you about Streetcar. The GR joined, I don't drive. (“you deserve to be driven”, someone once said, “round the bend.” I replied).

Basically a year’s membership is £59.50, then it costs about a fiver for an hour. The first 30 miles of petrol are free. They have cars placed all over central London and other large cities. There is a van at the end of Percy Street and a car on Bedford Square. The spaces are reserved for ‘car club’ cars, so you can always park. Simply ring and book when you need to pick up the car and use your personal streetcar credit card to unlock the car and drive away. Handy for people like us who don't have a car but occasionally need one. No more tube trips to Ikea!

IMAGE: Streetcar.co.uk


The wonderful Anthropologie is coming to Regent Street, I'm sure all you fashionistas knew this way back in January, but I, a humble mum, only just found out. Hurrah!
IMAGE: Anthropologie.com

Tuesday, 15 September 2009

Want this frock

Yasmin Le Bon designing for Wallis

That Mr Green, knows his ladies, or maybe his wife does.

Image: by me but from last Saturday's Guardian magazine 

HGV car park in the Alps

Face off

Apparently The GR tried to eat someone’s face on his birthday. 

He is mortified. 

Lunging at the girlfriend of a friend’s flatmate on the sofa, not high on the list of things to do in your forties really. 

I'm a little put out, but not much.

He was very drunk. 

The friend had said: ‘don’t what ever you do make a pass at my flatmate’s girlfriend’ - (red rag to bull that one). Yes, his reputation preceeded him, but you should hear mine.

I've teased him mercilessly all day, and he has berated himself all day. 

We get to kiss and make up.

Idiot boy.

Saturday, 12 September 2009


Here's a lovely blog to make you feel homesick.
A Life Reclaimed and a good tip for freezing sloes which burst on defrosting, so no need to prick.

Postal Strike

No post.
There have been a series of postal strikes across the country and in central London. There was one on Wednesday (my birthday) and another one due for next week. Not one birthday card! I went to the sorting office to double check, maybe after one reaches a certain age it's not policy to send cards any longer I thought to myself. Maybe no one likes me? There was a queue coming out of the door. Two staff manned the counter a harassed guy and a jolly lady. The harassed guy said: 'I've got to go to the loo, it's been hectic, sorry', and closed his window, emerging several minutes later looking slightly less harassed. I got the jolly lady. She had a look for me but there was nothing. 'It was my birthday' I said, 'and I didn't get one card'.  'It was my birthday last week and I'm still waiting for a card in the post:' said the jolly postlady. A woman behind joined in, 'didn't you see the picture in the London paper, there are over a million letters and parcels in the sorting office waiting to be sent'. 
I wasn't expecting that many.

Friday, 11 September 2009

Missing Pastie

Agent Provocateur sold out ages ago and this is proof, the poor girls’ pastie, has
fallen off. 

Pasties are what those in the Burlesque profession call ‘nipple tassels’. 

By the way if you want your nipple tassels to go round in a circle it’s quite similar to hula-hooping, don’t go round and round simply bounce up and down. 
(so I'm told)

Sloe Gin

A scrumping we shall go, a scrumping we shall go, eh eye diddly eye a scrumping we shall go.
There were sloes all over in Suffolk and I couldn't resist gathering some. I didn't even have to go very far these were in the hedge at the bottom of our rented cottage garden. 

Don't even think about tasting them. They are bitter, so bitter they set your teeth on edge. 

Bitter however is a good match for gin. 

Sloe gin recipe. 
Prick each sloe, place in a large sterile glass container with a tight fitting lid. 
Cover with cheap white sugar and cheap white gin. 
Leave for 3 months in a cool dark cupboard. 
Agitate every now and then. 
Come Christmas you should be able to syphon off a  liquer-like sweet alternative to Port and homemade too. 

WARNING: Can disappear before Christmas arrives.

IMAGE: moi: Look – dusty sloes and rosemary. 

Birthday pressies

The GR must love me very much. He bought me this for my birthday. I did a post a while back about things that give The GR the creeps – this is one of them (but something I have coveted for a long time). I shall create a fug in the kitchen making cake and listening to the radio. 

Other lovely pressies

Daniele Bott. 
Published by Thames and Hudson

Need I say more?

I still haven't seen the film, ‘Coco before Chanel’, but hope to remedy that soon.

“A lot of serious work goes into successful friviolity.”  Coco Chanel

Pressies what I got.

This is just a wonderful book, on my first dipping into I read about 'wildings'. Wildings are apple trees sprung from discarded apple cores. Many old varieties survive due to 'wildings'. It reminded me of mum taking me on a walk along a disused railway track in Hampshire and finding a beautiful apple tree amongst the wild marjoram. It stuck in my mind from her description of someone tossing a half eaten apple from a train window and years later there we were standing in front of a tree grown from that core - a 'wilding'.

Please Park Here

Who wouldn't? Well you would wouldn't you? This Aston Martin – yes it is, (isn't she just adorable?) parked up in front of us in Aldburgh. Poor L was left holding the baby while The GR, I and JT watched the owner and his shiny black labrador get out of this lady. The GR and I are really are not car people but everyone has a limit!

Friendly English Signage

Aldburgh, Suffolk

Thorpness Beach 9th September 2009

One way.

Other way.

Erbie way.

He loved it. 

Looks lovely doesn't it? Shall I spoil it for you and say Sizewell B is just around the corner on the top photo. 

Erbie had great fun on the shingle. I worried he'd eat the pebbles but he'd got practice in at a recent garden party in a gravel and brick edged herb garden at the weekend. Gravel is a lot more swallowable. I discovered making a point of saying no and lunging for tiny fists full of stones leads to said fists desperately hurling pebbles towards mouth; whereas (so far) saying: 'give to mummy' and offering a flat extended hand with a smile and thank-you gets pebbles passed over without fuss. 

His poor little legs are black and blue from crawling on shingle so I put him on the few inches of sand. He has progressed to catlike all fours, it really is like watching ones own little evolution.

The Mere at Thorpness

Thorpness is in Suffolk and has a boating lake called the Mere full of fetching swans a stones throw from the beach. We were invited to a wedding here back in 2003 but couldn't come because we had just run away to France for a year. It transpired that much fun was had by all and the wedding party took boats across the Mere to one of the islands. An auntie of the bride brought three of her 8 dogs who did as dogs do and shook themselves dry all over nearby strangers in expensive wedding outfits. The London supplier of chemical props fell in the Mere with afformentioned in pockets and everyone had to get honestly drunk. 

I didn't take a picture of the Mere but you can see some here on flickr and it's definitely worth checking out the nearby house in the clouds which can be rented.

Orford Quay & Metal Lorry!

This is for Seaside sister, (who found my blog accidently, Pub sister still doesn't know). 

Look at this lorry, isn't it just like the toy metal one mum used to have that had a winch that worked with string!

Early morning walk

Orford Castle built in the 12th century by Henry II on my birthday morning.


I know, I know, I said I wouldn't mention Belle Mere again, and here she is in one post after the other. 

Today, a day that will be recognised for evermore as a day of misery and suffering is The GR's birthday. This day 8 years ago we were getting up and ready to go out and have fun when a friend rang to say: 'put the TV on a plane has just flown into the Twin Towers'. 
'You're joking' we retorted. 'No, put the TV on'. We watched live as 'the second plane hit', these words are all so familiar now. 

In the end I turned the television off and said: 'We can't do this, it's your birthday'. 

We went out that evening to see a friend in a Country and Western band from the US. The event was understandably sombre. It was at The Borderline in the West End, which was spookily quiet, there was a no-fly zone over central London that day and for days after. When planes did start flying over again I remember the fear the noise brought. I cannot imagine the terror of living through a war, or of knowing someone within the towers that day. Those images will haunt me forever, more so the dust covered faces of bewilderment and silence afterwards.

I digress, back to Belle Mere. 

A letter. 

What did The GR do that is so awful his own mother would not call him on his birthday?

I should not write about The GR's family (a) because The GR does not know I have a blog and (b) because it's not my place to write about someone else's family. Bollocks to that. His family reward feckless behaviour and punish good. I'll give you an example: When The GR was a teenager he spent 3 hours washing and polishing his mother's car whilst his older brother sat inside snogging a girlfriend. His mother went to the shop and came back with a packet of Maltezers for The GR and a bottle of whiskey and 200 fags for the brother - ever had the feeling you've been had? This is supposed to be a funny story. Well, it is quite a funny story until you see the darker side of it, his brother is now cross addicted and The GR won't eat Maltezers. 

I love your blog award

A kind soul has graciously given moi an award, which made me smile whilst I was seething about Belle Mere (again). So thank you very much loveaudrey.

I do in fact love Audrey. I have a badge/button that says as much.

The rules are accept the award, post it on your blog along with the name of the person who tagged you, pass the award to others.

I would very much like to award:
Everybody Says Don't a good honest fashion blog of likes and dislikes.
and Single Supplement a good honest single's blog of life and dislikes.

I also give the award (without the consequences, so no tagging or passing on necessary).
Weebirdy who finds lovelies everywhere and shares a covetable shopping address book. 
Belgian Waffling an annual fête, a confessional, sweary biscuits and so much more!
Liberty London Girl One of the top 100 blogs in the world. An English fashion editors views of stateside living - very engaging.
Mrs Trefusis Takes a Taxi I think this lady may actually be Audrey Hepburn.

Tuesday, 8 September 2009

Going away

I've got to go, as The GR has gone to collect car, I'm supposed to be packing. Erbie has just unpacked my handbag, and is eating grapes, and my mobile. I've put the white sofa cover in the washing machine (I know, we were sans child when we got it), and have managed to find 3 towels to take. Only three bags of stuff, not bad, one of them looks like pressies - wee hee.

Not West End Bum

West End Mum is not going to be a West End Bum as she has picked up some work, which means no evening spent twittering, but working. 

I met a new client, lets call him the suit in a local cafe on Saturday he cancelled friday twice.
I took on a job that he had started with someone else but wasn't happy. In my profession we all know taking on someone elses work is a nightmare- everyone works differently. 

This proved to be the case, the job was a right pigs ear, with lots of bits missing. I didn't have the software that it had been created in, nor did I really have the time to do it, because I had another job for my regular lovely client who give me a laptop with all the latest software on.

Said laptop read new clients work, and they have extended the time until I return from my short break. So the Gods are smiling on me.

I spoke to the guy in Nottingham who had previously done the suits work, he virtually sobbed down the phone at me, saying he wanted nothing more to do with suit. I placated him and asked if there was anyway I could have the missing files. Absolutely not. So I leave them to sort that out between them and probably come back to a nice can of worms job. 

That should get my baby brain in order.

It's my birthday tomorrow

...and I'm going to Orford! No Greek island this year, but it looks nice.

Clinical Trial week 12

I went back to the hospital today to for week 12 of my clinical diet trial.
I could have kissed her, it's made such a difference. She told me she had had mixed results but mainly positive, but they have stopped her funding, and she had only put 18 patients on the trial when she needs to have 100 for statistical purposes. With the new financial year and the credit crunch there is no longer the funding for the intolerance testing at the beginning of the trial. Ridiculous as the amount of money that could be saved on medicine if it proves relevant would far out way the test. I am on the trial for another 12 weeks. When I think of all the steroids and intrusive endoscopies, colonoscopies, and medication I've taken over the past 16 years, that perhaps could have been avoided, well, you work it out. Of course, there may be other factors, not speaking to Belle Mere makes my life less stressful, which could be a factor, and I've cut out a lot of dairy aswell as the yeast and egg white I'm reportedly intolerant to. But hey ho, for now I am happy and symptom free, I can wear white again and don't need to know where the nearest loo is. I'm even going to stay with friends for a couple of days without fear of embarrasing morning or midnight rushes to the bathroom every five minute. Bliss. My Bristol Stool Form Chart register is back on 5 for the first time in years!

Saturday, 5 September 2009

Watching clothes dry

My life is so exciting at the moment I was thrilled to buy a new clothes airer from Habitat yesterday. The GR doesn't like new stuff coming into the flat, as we have too much stuff, along with the stuff languishing in the loft of the flat (no longer ours) in North London. I swayed him by hanging washing from the backs of doors, baby clothes on the radiators, knickers and bras on door handles, it worked. I keep trying to get rid of stuff, but it reappears. Now there is baby stuff too. Oh well at least the clothes look nice drying.

Early Saturday Morning W1

The sun filters through a pale watery blue sky and reflects off the shiny brass windowsills of the pub opposite. The cleaner who makes them shine has just turned up and is shouldering the door to get in. Staff from the Charlotte Street hotel are having a fag out the back. The paper boy for the newsagents on the corner is wandering around looking lost waiting for the owner to turn up. Erbie is eating a woolly peach. A couple obviously still out from last night walk hand in hand up the road, she has mussed up long blonde hair and bare legs in heels. A manky pigeon walks across the deserted road. The music starts up in the café below ‘Street Life’ ha, how appropriate.

Friday, 4 September 2009

Presents for three little girls

Victorian, Regency and Tudor costume paper cutout dolls from the National Portrait Gallery shop. 

Pop brights

Blondie in eighties brights - gotta love her.

Bubblegum Music

Just had to order this from amazon!

Pink frock

Going to recreate this look for party on Sunday with a nice warm cardi instead of the clothes rail.

Dyslexia Schools

I've been doing a bit of research for Jean who is looking  for a secondary school for her 8 year old - already! They live in South London but are considering moving for a good school (Jean was a full term boarder as a child and hated it, so couldn't do it to her own child). 

I have been recommended 3 schools from the horses mouth as it were by another friend with an older child having already gone through the system and having just achieved very good GCSE results. I thought I'd pass the information on - you never know. 

These come highly reccomended:

The first for 6 to 13 year olds, is a co-educational independent in Battersea called The Dominie.

The second Appleford in Wiltshire is a co-ed for  7-14 year olds and takes day and boarders.

The third Bethany in Kent 11-18 years, day and boarders - right the way through to sixth form.

Look out for extra fees for specialist classes which most charge on top of regular school fees, apart from Bethany where the fee covers everything.

I can barely think about nurseries yet let alone schools for Erbie and he's going to be one of the young ones - August baby!

Thursday, 3 September 2009

Treat yourself

My horoscope this morning said treat yourself. 

So I did. 

If it had said exercise more and don’t eat chocolate well that’s different.

Shocking photo by me:

MaryJanes by Primarni £13, so good I got 2 pairs. 

Mini Daps by H&M £4.99, so cute I want to ice them.

Treat yourself again.

I also got some sequined leggings from Primarni for a tenner, this was what I was thinking they might look like. IN MY HEAD! 

Having a clear out

Just clearing up my computer desktop so need to post these pictures for future reference. 

I've always wanted one of those tin USA measuring jugs but these are cute.

Wake to birdsong - I likey. Not very likely until Erbie at least 14 years old though!

Kookie Keys 


Wednesday, 2 September 2009


I went with Suki today to see a nursery she had been given the opportunity of putting Missy into for 3 days a week when she goes back to teaching at the end of September. A lovely little place, not far away, but not open to the likes of I, it is specifically for mothers working within the faculty however I think Erbie may have earned us brownie points for the future with his smile. It had a good feel, the girls working there were a balanced cross section of Londoners, the children all looked happy and were divided into 2 groups, babies (0-2) and slightly older ones. Babies had a good routine of outdoor time, lunch, nap, play, tea, activity. A day running from 8.45am until 5pm. Suki has been offered to share with another mum, meaning she can put Missy in for only the 3 days she needs. Most nurseries it seems insist on 5 days, at approximately £50 a day, x 5 x 4, well you can see it gets expensive. Jean used to have to do this with 2 children - that's £2000 a month! Most individual child carers come in a £7 an hour. Suki is in knots about what to do, and has even considered giving up work, but having just been promoted to course leader it would seem churlish. I understand her fears and am thankful I don't have to be in this position myself just yet. But maybe if I got a job for 2 days a week next year, I could end up being her second mum. Thinking about it I'd rather not go back to proper work until Erbie starts school, is this feasible I wonder. If I kept my hand in a few pies and got some good projects to work on at home maybe yes. I should really call up some of my contacts, I haven't done anything for the entire month of August. Get thee to work westendmum or you'll end up being a westendbum.

Green spots

I feel bad uploading this image from the Phoenix Garden behind St Giles church in Covent Garden because it actually is a beautiful little place, a real oasis of calm behind the main bustle of Charing Cross road. Nevertheless I could not resist.

Tuesday, 1 September 2009

They gave me Sanctuary

Today I spent a lovely day at the Sanctuary Spa in Covent Garden's Floral Street. Jean had given me a day's voucher for my birthday last year under the proviso that she came too. She has a high powered job, two children and a house to run, so we seldom get much, if any time together. I took my book, but didn't open it as we spent the day catching up, inbetween and during jacuzzi, sauna, swimming, lunch, tea, followed by a massage, ahhhhhhh. The koi carp room, was almost empty before midday but by the time we left at 5 pm had filled with lounging ladies swaddled in white robes. 
My massage, another treat from Jean was rather effective - It started with me shallow breathing face down on the massage table, panicked about whether someone was going to burst through the door saying we have an urgent phone call for WestEndMum, Erbie has been rushed to - but thankfully the masseuse was good enough to take my mind off of childcare worries by serious knot removal on my upper back. The noise of grainy lymphatic nodules crunching within me under her capable hands, along with calming music that included strange deep exhaling noises (took me a while to work out where they were coming from) was enough for me to almost drift off. 
I'd been to the Sanctuary before a long time ago and hadn't really got it, but as I discussed with Jean, we were art students at the time, lounging around reading magazines really wasn't something one needed to pay for. 
This time round, after only an hour I got it.

Other nonsense

Quote of the day

‘They tuck you up your mum and dad...’
Anon - after Larkin

“Philately will get you everywhere”

“It’s not the despair, I can handle the despair. 
It’s the hope I can’t deal with”

“Each new friend represents a world in us, a world not born until they arrive, and it is only by this meeting that a new world is born.”
Anais Nin

‘Come on Dover move your bloomin’ arse’.
Eliza Doolittle