Sunday, 26 July 2009

Shera returns

Gone for less than a week Shera returns from her Doit4real adventure. Having waved her off last Sunday amongst a number of scary looking parents ( OK Chav) I was worried that I had sent her off to Chav land for a week of hell. The instructors looked pleasant and were all logod up with PGL - slightly reassuring - and seemed to know what they were doing. The travel arrangement were all a bit sketchy. I think I would have preferred to know beforehand that the bus was taking her to a hub bus depot where she would then be dispatched with other similar thrill seekers residing at the same camp. The Hub and the vision of all these kids on a coach going off to the unknown all smacked of the recent Torchwood affair and left you feeling decidedly uneasy. Following their strict instructions of no mobile phone, camera, mp3 etc she left with change to give me a call from a payphone ( would she even know how to use one ) having abandoned the idea of taking the old ( brick ) mobile for fear of social exclusion, along with a disposable camera. Going by the saying no news is good news I didn't hear anything until Friday when the organisers gave me a bell. OMG she-has-fallen-down-a-cave scenario flashed through my mind...But no, she couldn't remember if she was coming back on the coach or not and could I confirm her arrangments. The centre then told me the pay phone didn't work and the reception was poor. Was she OK? I ask gingerly. Yes was the reply and they put the phone down.

Waiting for her at the station where the parents didn't look as scary second time round they finally arrived. She of way too much eye make up, think Dusty Springfield in her heyday ( when did that happen?) and the broadest grin ever descended from a much smaller coach than had collected them. What had happened to all the other kids? Had they been given to aliens? " Am gonna cry" she declared. I was flattered by such display of emotion clearly overwhelmed to see me, " I miss my friends so much I'm gonna cry " Oh well she clearly had a good time then. Shera who never really gushes very much and is prone to teenage monosylaballiosis with the best of them then proceeded to GUSH at full force all the way home. It is now 3 days later and she is still gushing. A definite hit then.

Shera writes " it was very scary being on a bus surrounded by chavs and not very sure about what the Hub was. Fortuantely all the chavs seems to go for watersports and not where I went. The week was really fun and enjoyable. I did orienteering, weasling, archery ( got a bulls eye ) , climbing ( was first up the rock ), felt ill when it was kayaking, walked 7m ( views were gorgeous ),stream scrambling, gorge walking, zip wire ( upside down & back to front ) and lots of coach journeys on bumpy roads. The food was great, lots of jacket potatoes. Evening activities included team building, discos, limboing, watching movies. Made some fab friends"

Thursday, 23 July 2009

Day 7 in the School Holiday house only 49 to go

Can someone give me a map so I can navigate the minefield that is teenage hormones... please? I thought, bad start I know, that once the school holidays started the minefield that is the relationship between me and He-man would be much improved given that the major obstacle ( school ) was out of the picture. How wrong could I be.

Firstly...He has no credit on his phone as after many threats to do so I have switched his phone from contract to pay as you go. This means he cannot ring me to tell me where he is. I do ring him, however this gets ignored. So we have already clocked up a few AWOLS.

Having managed to squeeze in a couple of hours of unexpected mother and son bonding time on Tuesday whilst Shera is on DoitforReal course somewhere in UK I was quite taken aback that this could so quickly change whilst I was out of the house for less than 2 hours. I came back to the house, found him slumped over the PC fielding numerous msn and facebook messages under a black cloud of doom. What on earth had gone on. I immediately offered a shoulder to cry on in a very tactful/casual-let's-not-make-a-big-deal-out-of-this way whereby he stormed off to the bathroom ( for 2 hours! Tommy tanking again ) and told me I should die. God I thought some thing serious must have happened. Maybe he has been fired for being the most unreliable paper boy ever or maybe one of the many girls have dumped him. I finally found yesterday that he had gone too far apparently in telling a friend what he though of him and hadn't liked the response from said friend. Was that it? I thought, all that melodrama for that? what is he going to be like if he does lose paper round, girlfriend etc? Lock himself in the bathroom for a whole night Tommy Tanking.

In addition to this he has immediately fast forwarded to operating at the complete opposite end of the day to me. I had expected this but it to have been a gradual process not "I am going to bed at 2:30am in the first week." We had words about this on Sunday night given I had to go to work the next day. It was all "Unacceptable, unfair and whilst he thinks he is being quiet he tiptoes round like the dancing elephants in Dumbo." (me ) Him - "sorry mum wont do it again ." Point made - so I thought. Last night he did it again. He blames his bedroom door for waking me up as it makes some bizarre farting noise every time it opens or shuts and that the dog who had rolled in fox shit was omitting noxious fumes that I couldn't possibly sleep through. None of it of course was his fault. " Oh and can I have some money to go to town tomorrow mum please " SAY WHAT!

Sunday, 19 July 2009

hair in funny places

Yesterday definitely had a theme to it. Hair. In unwanted places. How is it that you can go to bed looking normal yet wake up the next day and horrors of horrors you have a Tom Selleck style moustache appear? Not normally a problem as is easily rectified with my long term friend Jolen ( not the Dolly Parton track ). However I did not have time to do anything about this morning as I had a house viewing calling round in less time than I could rip off the lid of pot of bleach. Cue frantic plucking at said black haired spikey monsters on my upper lip. However this resulted in a bright red top lip so I stopped plucking, thought b*ll*cks I will just have to brave it out and hope my personal welcome mat was not off putting. The door bell went and I opened the door. What was I worrying about? The woman in front of me was a fully paid up member of the Tom Selleck fan club and I looked like a pre-pubescent boy in comparison.

Off to town with my sister. She of Blonde hair and delicate eye browns beautifully shaped. Whilst mooching in Debenhams sale ( at a particularly gorg pair of shoes, I'll have to go back ) we noticed a threading concession. I'd love a bit of threading on my beetle brows but not in full public. 2 women were busy having their brows done, although they could have had top lip chin or even beard done in full public view too if they wished. There was a beautiful black women having her browns attended to. She sat up and smiled at us when all thoughts of joining the threading club dissipated. Her brow and forehead were bright red and swollen in a Klingon stylee. The thought of gallivanting round town looking like that had us running for the hills. Actually Browns and very nice glass of chilled Pinot Grigio whilst we waited for our girls to spend up.

And so to the evening....after a while the ageing process conversation arose, as always, and the amount of unwanted hair us ladies seem to be developing. There was the usual top lip and hairy chin discussion followed by a main course of rampant lady gardens with the occasional grey hair. We then got on to talking about nasal hair. I shared my tip of using Immac shoved up the old nostrils and a quick blow to the nose - job done. My 2 running buddies pricked up their ears at this as a possible solution to their dilemma. Our Mr legaleagle dad very proudly brought out his electric nose hair trimmers. Soon all the blokes had had a go of said gadget, all admiring it. Not to be out done running buddies 1 & 2 joined in! God they'll be doing their ears next!

Sunday, 12 July 2009

Old Skool parenting

In the Saturday Times I read an article that made me feel smug. I then read the article underneath it that made me feel ashamed. The latter was the story of my youth. My hobby, looking back, was alcohol. Granted I imbibed in some culturally wonderful places or art/architectural/social importance but nevertheless. I think much of my twenties and thirties were spent in a permanent state of inebriation, a bit like the drunken family on Harry Enfield & Chums. The weekend would start and finish with a drink. I credit my still reasonably youthful appearance on the fact that I am fact pickled and the aging process stopped aged 30 ish. You could say that once my affair with alcohol waned, post children, that I began to realise that I had bugger all in common with Mr X. Fast forward a few years and I am now waiting for the nisi to become absolut ( legal parlance not the vodka .) However post children the consumption of alcohol takes on a different slant. It really is a race to the vino on a night. A slug of lemon tea really doesn't give you the much needed hit you are after post a hard day's work and navigating a teenage or toddler land mine. But these days I appreciate quality rather than quantity and the bottle bank trips are much less embarrassing.
So there we are for one brief moment a family all together, i.e. 2 teens, a dog and me, about to watch the move as sent by lovely Mr Tesco DVD rental. The Defiance, hurrah an adult film that I can relate to. He-man snarls and sits reluctantly much preferring quality entertainment such as The Hangover or The 40 year old virgin which he watches later that night, yet again. I think he is looking for tips ( more on that in another post .) She-ra sits politely asking when the chocolate and popcorn is coming. As expected after half an hour and not a boob or shag in sight He-man skulks off declaring it to be a old of crap and Daniel Craig can't act. She-ra however is in it for the long haul. She has discovered that sometimes a film can be crap ( which it isn't by the way ) but if the eye candy is of high enough quality then you can sit through anything. See many of Brad Pitt or George Clooney films for supporting evidence. I for one really enjoyed the Defiance. I even missed the fact that had Google Grandad been around we would have had a much welcome (ruining) running dialogue about the Jewish Poles during the second world war right down to the weaponry used. She-ra asked questions during the film, always at the crucial moment, infuriating but encouraging. The question she really wanted to know however was what was the name of the supporting actor in the role of Zus, who was also in Wolverine ( an added bonus in her eyes.) After much thought half way through the film she finally declared who he was..... Levi Arsehole! (see Leiv Schrieber - sorry mate but you will be for ever Levi Arshole )

Friday, 10 July 2009

Google grandad

Grandad is like a walking encyclopedia to the kids. I am sure that they devise ways of trying to catch him out for when he and wifey come to stay. For instance " if we are all god's children what makes Jesus so special?" asks shera. (I must point out we were in the garden of one of the many recent very hot days with her back to us sitting in the most comfortable chair placed about 10ft away from everyone else.) "because he is the only true son of God" replied grandad without taking his eyes away from the newspaper and in a split second. She was happy with this response. Later my son tried his geographical knowledge by quizzing him on various places names and capitals across the world. He didn't falter once but when he got to question number 49 and with no signs of relenting he passed the baton to wifey. She in the encyclopedia's encyclopedia. All questions were correctly answered and no gloating in sight.

If the wrinklies aren't flexing their amazing knowledge ( which is one of the purposes of being a grand parent let's face it ) then we get tv tourettes. This is where grandad ( again without moving his eyes from what he is doing ) will shout out the political persuasion of every single newsreader, actor or anyone who happens to be on the box. How does he know Natasha Kaplinski is a leftie? BBC newsreaders are is favourite targets. However it does become a pain when you are tyring to watch your favourite telly programme to the background of
" communist! Marxist! etc" If it isn't the political persuasion then we get the political context of said film. This usually results in lots of teenage flouncing as yet again they have been unable to watch Friends without grandad's verbal sub titles