Thursday 31 December 2009

Noughties or Nicies ?

A very Happy Hogmanay to you all, I hope your Christmas went well, ours was splendid, in The Mother Country, with the family and David Tennant on tv every single day, how good is that? As the Queen gets to do a wee speech at Christmas I feel it's only fair that I get to do a wee blog on Hogmanay, after all nobody puts my face on a stamp and you don't have to pay to keep me in tiaras, corgis or castles (but if you wanted to, stroll on, be my guest)

How has your decade been? For me this has been the decade which has probably seen the most change, some for the better, some for the worse, some I have just had to accept and adapt to.

On Hogmanay 1999 I was meant to be at a ceilidh in Linlithgow to see in the millennium and our last Hogmanay in Scotland, instead I was at home with a poorly child (Eldest Beautiful Daughter) in Edinburgh, sad that I was leaving Scotland, worried that I was leaving my mum who had just had a stroke and low level excited about our new life in England, we moved here in March 2000.

I stopped being a nurse and retrained as a nursery teacher and then again as an adult eduction teacher specialising in childcare and parenting skills (no laughs from the back row please, my kids are perfectly fine, thank you). The group I set up in 2001 to support first time parents is still going strong 9 years later and I have worked with over 1000 families just through that wee group alone, it remains my favourite job of all time, one day a week I get to squish and kiss babies to my hearts content. I have taught in FE colleges and in a high school (which my bloody year 12 btecs nearly finished me being a teacher for good) and now I work for a children's charity but I still do a lot of training and working with families. All change on the job front.

I am still in the same house in England 10 years on, the longest time I have ever lived in the same house. I don't love this house like I have loved some of my others, but I know I will probably stay until the Beautiful Baby Daughter finishes school, so I have another 5 or 6 years here. I also have The Beautiful House in Turkey as well, until it sells, so if you know someone who wants a house abroad, let me know, mates rates and all that. Same goes for rentals, I think all you bloggers should visit my house this year. Not much change on the house front.

My children have gone from nearly 8 to nearly 18, 4 and a half to 14 and a half and 3 to 13. Huge changes. They are all now bigger than me. They are my life's work and the joy and pride of my heart. They are kind, funny, polite, smart and beautiful and I know I am biased but other (non related) people say these things to me too. They are the love of my life and my reason for everything.

My family, my beautiful parents are alive and well and enjoying retirement.I have added 2 nieces and a brother in law. My sister very sadly has had 2 miscarriages and this has been a hard realisation that her dream of 3 children won't happen. My brother in law has safely had a tumour removed from his brain and at his last 6 monthly check, all remains well. I lost my paternal grandmother at the age of 90. I have almost completely lost touch with my inlaws barring 1 set of brother and sister in law who still love me and I remain a part of their lives. That is sad, I spent 21 years as part of that family and I miss some of my nieces and nephews muchly.

My own personal life has gone from being totally happily married to totally unhappily married and then a detour through separation and a journey through divorce. I have ventured into the dating world after a few decades absence with sometimes painful and sometimes hilarious consequences. There appears to be a theme with my relationships which I call The Unholy Trinity. If you drive a BMW or are an IT/Project Manager or indeed a management consultant or are a Virgo you will be attracted to me. Only men who have at least 2 of the 3 will ask me out. I am catnip to the middle aged executive. The last 3 people I have dated have had 2 out of the 3, the one who had the 3 of 3 (IT GOD) for those of you have been reading a while was the one who was the most difficult to be with, to love and to forget.

Friendships have remained fairly unchanged I still have the ones I started the decade with and very fortunately I have added a few more. Some friendships have seen me through my darkest hours and I will be forever grateful for that. Some of these friendships are virtual, I now know courtesy of blogger, people from all over the world, people who mail me and facebook me and I have never actually met but they are still my friends. Some of these friends I have now met in real life and I have really enjoyed their company. I now have some male friendships, I didn't have that when I was married, I just had female friends and coupley friends, some of these male friendships are completely platonic and some have a will we won't we quality, I like this, a lot.

So for me the noughties have been overwhelmingly a time of change, I didn't think I liked it or could cope with change but I do. I have rediscovered lots of passions and added some new ones. This has been definitely a good decade for me, definitely. So once again I am truly grateful for my beautiful life.

Wednesday 23 December 2009

Driving home for Christmas

Today I will drive home to The Mother Country. Since I took this picture a few days ago, our snow is much deeper but I hope the motorways will be clearer, I'm low level worried about Cumbria and the borders though. Hopefully you won't see me on News at Ten.

Saturday 19 December 2009

Conversations with ex mr auntiegwen

ag - "Did you tell Beautiful Baby Daughter she could have a Nintendo DSI for Christmas?"

ex mr ag "yep"

ag - "She asked me and I said no because she doesn't really play with the Nintendo DS she has and there is absolutely nothing wrong with the one she's got"

ex mr ag -"But it's Christmas"

ag - "She doesn't need it"

ex mr ag - "But she wants it"

ag - "I want to shag David Tennant and a Chanel handbag, that's my Christmas present sorted then."

Wednesday 16 December 2009

Tis the season, hic

Should I be concerned that Eldest Beautiful Daughter is overly fond of the Baileys Hint of Mint bought for Christmas?

It apparently is fab in hot chocolate, adds a certain something to chocolate mousse and she is very much looking forward to using it to replace the milk in her coco pops.

I'm so proud.

Friday 11 December 2009

Reasons I am a "failed grown up" tm The Beautiful Children

I am a disorganised Mummy and didn't check the schedule for the weekend.

I now have to be driving to Sheffield to buy gig tickets as part of a Christmas surprise for The Beautiful Son (don't trust anyone to post them as they may not be real) at the same time as taking Beautiful Baby Daughter to her Girls Brigade Church parade. She will now have to walk to church and as we all know that I am a horrible overcontrolling mummy I won't let her go on her own that means Eldest Beautiful Daughter will have to walk her and be my replacement. EBD's cup of joy runneth over at the thought of getting up and being in church with a hangover. BBD's cup of joy runneth over at having to get EBD up and out and grumpy at being there. I have pissed off both the daughters at the same time. I am too scared to tell them where and why I am going as it would piss them off even more that the recipient of such a hard to get treat will be snoring his fat head off in bed as opposed to walking the 20 mins to church in the rain. And you know it will be raining.

I got overexcited and didn't check dates

I spent most of last Friday morning and £160 buying Peter Kay concert tickets as part of The Beautiful Children's Christmas present. When I got the confirmation email I realised that they are for April 2011. Eldest Beautiful Daughter won't even be living here then. Happy Christmas, you have to wait 16 months to enjoy it.

General failure of life stuff

I have got to provide bank statements and credit card statements for the last year as part of my divorce. Hmm, enough said.

I have to count up all mine and the children's total cost of living, how much we spend on absolutely everything and I am scared to do that level of real maths. I can do shoe and handbag and nice lady things maths (I can spend £165 on these LK Bennett shoes or I can buy the £66 charcoal grey Kew longline cardie and the £85 black and plum leather Kew tote and a new Mac lipstick)

General I still behave like a teenager stuff

I am overgiddy with excitement because we have sublet one of our unused office rooms to the site managers from the buidling site next door. There are men in and out all day long. Surveyorie type men and builderie type men. There are lots and lots of men. In hard hats, with tool belts and in our kitchen being manly. I reek of DKNY woman, am wearing really nice clothes to work and my lipgloss application has tripled. The builderie and surveyorie type men all seem pleased to see me and pop up to my office to see if I want a cup of tea made for me. I am extremely enamoured of this type of office perk. Extremely.

Tuesday 8 December 2009

Cheap Laughs

Would you like to hear what made your auntie laugh out loud in a slightly bitter and ironic fashion, for a long time in a "this is the real deal, I've had 3 kids and my pelvic floor's not what it was" kinda way?

Read on, for your auntie will lay a wee funny upon you, unselfish to my very core, public spirited to the last.

auntiegwen's solicitor " Can I ask if you have any plans to remarry?"

Insert ironic and slightly hysterical laughter accesorised by incredulous facial expression, the "You've gotta be kidding me" look here.

Abso feckin lutely, this divorce hasn't put me off men or marriage in the slightest. I can't wait to do it all again. I am an avid subscriber to "Bridezilla" and my omnipresent Pollyanna hasn't had a dent in her.

And I didn't even charge you the £165 it cost me to hear that.

What a gal.

Friday 4 December 2009

Tis the season to be weird, tra la la la

Are you the sort of person who looks in other people's shopping baskets? You know, when you're in queues, you have a wee glance at what they're buying. When you order stuff off Amazon there is a nice wee feature to satisfy that inner noseyness.

I've spent a huge amount of time and nearly all of my salary on Amazon recently and this little gem popped up

Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
Page 1 of 1 (Start over) Back
Jumpstart!: Literacy - Games and Activities for Ag... by Pie Corbett
4.8 out of 5 stars (8) £9.46
Official Borat Mankini Thong
3.5 out of 5 stars (21) £4.75

At that point I was buying a replacement power cable for my laptop. I don't know why I didn't think to accesorize it with lime green comedy sex wear whilst I sat down to improve my childs literacy. How very vanilla of me.

Tuesday 1 December 2009

Tis the season

Your auntie is very very cheerful and full of goodwill at the moment, suck it up please, it's unlikely that Pollyanna will prevail over the grumpy old woman and I'm sure the flying monkeys will be back shortly.

I love love love Christmas and as it's the 1st of December I feel I can let rip and go with the festive flow. I can scoff mince pies and fruit and nut toblerones to my hearts content, put Baileys in my coffee, light my Crabtree and Evelyn Noel candles (when I smell them I know it's Christmas) and get as excited as a 4 year old.

For the first time in 22 years I will be spending Christmas Day with my parents, my children and my sister and her family and I am so excited and also very grateful to my children's dad for his generosity in letting the children be with me.

So I will be in The Mother Country from the 23rd onwards, and my mammy will be minding me, and I don't have to be the Mummy, I get to be the child again, it really will be a fab Christmas.

Friday 27 November 2009

This week your auntie has been mainly...

Trying to stop eating fruit and nut toblerones. This is not easy as Sainsbury's has the big massive ones on offer for £2, and how often do you get the joy of a of massive one for £2, not often when you're my age.

Running - well, I've been once and I may go later today, close enough.

Fretting about her hair - I have had it cut and I have had something fancy done with colour. I am usually very boringly dark brown and straight (ok, dark brown and grey, pedantic lot that you are) I now have caramel, honey and toffee slices, do you now want to eat me?

Dancing in my jammies ala Chris Moyles, same movement same body shape but I, cunning linguist that I am sing "I'm in my jammies girl" makes me laugh, if you don't listen to radio 1 you may be a bit lost but you can youtube Chris Dom and Dave dancing and you'll get the gist. If I can get the weans to film me, I'll stick a wee video up for you.

Weighing up whether the derision from the daughters would be balanced out with the joy of wearing the yummy fitflop boots. They are soooooooooooooooooo comfy and soft.

Wondering if she did the right thing by closing the door on someone. This person, once upon a time was so close to me. Then we had no contact and completely out of the blue they turned up at my door on Tuesday night and wanted to talk. I told them it wasn't a good time and said goodbye. I have been mildly rattled ever since.

Feeling more of a bitch than usual, I have been low level irritated and hard to please this week. Someone who really doesn't deserve it has taken the brunt of it. To top it off, they have sent me a bouquet of flowers this am, to cheer me up, again my name is auntiegwen and I am a class A bitch

Thursday 19 November 2009

In which we inflict our weirdness on an unsuspecting world.

I have some little quirks of personality that make me unique, you undoubtedly do yourself and so have The Beautiful Children. We know and love each other and we're pretty cool with each others weird stuff. When we are at home we do have lots of chat and everyone tries to outfunny each other, we are a big fat bunch of show offs and a whole heap of strange. But you kinda don't notice that in your own house where you exist in a cosy little vacuum.

But we went out today, all together, the family Von auntiegwen went to the dentist.

We arrived and were met by the world's most sullen dental nurse (Olympic standard for sure), we did some form filling in and then entered the waiting room. Cue the Twilight Zone music. There aren't 4 seats together so we find seats where we can. Now regular humans are there, being quiet. This does not perturb The Beautiful Children at all, they continue to hold their conversation across the room, they didn't get the memo that says you have to be quiet in any kind of a place that smells antiseptic and people wear white uniforms.

Eldest Beautiful Daughter starts getting twitchy because on the wall there is a plug socket, a double plug socket and one switch is on and the other is off. They have to be both on or both off, yep, this is the same one who has a phobia of feet. So I can see her looking and I wonder if she'll get up and flick the switch in a nonchalant fashion or if she'll hyperventilate and faint. Oh no, the bold girl herself, marched up and switched them both to off and explained to a rather startled waiting room that uneven switches make her feel sick, then proceeded to tell them how in her sociology class there is a row of 3 double plugs and she has now trained the teacher to sort them before her lesson. She returns to her seat, not a bother on her and I flippantly (I know everythings my fault before you start) say "Good girl yourself, I thought you were going to have to sort the magazines out"

Oh my, back up she gets and starts to tidy the magazines up, she arranges them in size order and straightens out the bent covers and makes them all line up exactly in a row.

Then The Beautiful Son chips in with "You didn't arrange them by genre or date, you're such a fail at OCD, they'll take your badge back off you"

So with every eye in the room on her and the regular humans beginning to wonder if we should be out without a carer back up she gets and starts to re sort the magazines.

We have been waiting around 15 minutes or so when The Beautiful Son gets up and has a wander round the room, reading the notices, still talking loudly in his very exaggerated Scottish accent about when he was a laddie (he pretends to be a very old Scottish man, he sounds like an unsexy Sean Connery) when he stops in front of a picture that has 3 photos of smiling mouths and he exclaims in delight (so much so that he forgot to do the accent) "Look, it's me, remember when Mr Dentist took my photo the last time" and he points to a very obviously female mouth, in his defense it was the nicest one. His sisters hoot with derision and tell him that a- this is a woman's mouth and b- that photo was an x ray. He recovers quickly and back in unsexy Sean Connery voice retorts " Ah dinnae ken why he was xraying ma mooth, it wisnae even a bit broken"

The Beautiful Baby Daughter who is the most functional and sensible of us all looks totally disgusted and disgruntled at her fate of being landed with us, the weird family. She plugs her thumb back in her mouth, puts her ipod in and ignores us, she still manages to look more adult than the other 2 combined. This is actually quite hard to do whilst sucking your thumb.

The waiting room are perplexed at the bizarre theatre of strange before them but are glad when we are called through. We could hear (from the other room) and were hurt by the collective sigh of relief.

We don't have our usual dentist but a new one, a Sith Afrikken one, and now TBS morphs into a bad Nelson Mandela Accent and "yisses and viry nice to meet yi" to the new dentist and we all get a clean bill of health, 3 weans all teens and not a filling between them, ever, in their whole life, surely that's worth a good mummy badge?

As we get ready to leave, I'm sure to the whole building's delight and I have to make the new appointment with the sullen girl, remember her? from the beginning of this long and sorry tale, she asks us who we want the appointment with and The Beautiful Son decides he's going to make her smile, with his bad patter, and starts off with a "I've been wi Mr Dentist since I wis a wee laddie, fur 9 years I've been cummin heer and fur 17 of these 18 times I've had Mr Dentist, he's ma pal and I dinnae want 1 of yer new fancy dentists, I'm loyal to ma ain dentist"

And right on cue behind him comes his own dentist who is more than a little surprised to be so enthusiastically greeted by TBS who grabs and shakes his hand all the while explaining that he didn't choose to be unfaithful to him (still in the bad old man unsexy Sean voice) that it was sullen girls fault for sending him to the other dentist. This was accompanied by pointing and wagging of finger to sullen girl. Who has upgraded to being cross and sullen and is now in training to be a Doctors receptionist. Or in therapy.

Like I say, we don't go out much with the regular humans.

Friday 13 November 2009

Reasons me no likey November

It is a month of memories for me. Every week in November I have a painful anniversary. I am always at my lowest possible emotional state this month.

I think it's totally unreasonable that I can't just fast forward and miss the whole month out, I don't mind October and even though I'm mad busy I still enjoy December

My failsafe cure for the glums of sticky toffee pudding and low fat custard, (the low fat part is ESPECIALLY important) just adds to my glumness of my general lardiness.

My less calorific cure for the glums gives me a hangover.

It's always dreich.

I can't get my washing dried outside and I HATE using a tumble drier.

I can't get out and run because it only seems to be not raining and not dark when I'm at work (adding to the lardiness, adding to the glumness).

It gets dark at feck it's early o'clock, I hate it being dark at tea time.

People start using the C word and we know auntie no likey that till December.

I get slightly panicky that I will not be able to fund the C word.

This is the last Christmas I will have all 3 of my children living with me and as I type this I can't see for tears.

Sunday 8 November 2009

University Challenge

Although I love it in Mummy denial land even I must confess that the time has come for even me to accept that the Eldest Beautiful Daughter may actually be going.

I am spending an awful lot of Saturdays in an awful lot of universities all keen to take the cost of my first flat to educate and house the EBD for the next few years.

I love my daughter with all of my heart (and a wee dod of my liver as my granny used to say) and I know that she is not a fully functioning human yet and I know it's my fault.

But this Saturday I thought it would be different, Northampton is rated 7th out of 85 for the degree she wants to do and it was her 2nd choice after Glasgow (who want all her A levels and mine and her dad's inclusive to get in)

I watch her make notes and listen to the tutor speaking and I almost have the proud Mummy smile.

You may have to click on the photo to get the fullest appreciation of what goes on in her head.

Scary, isn't it?

Wednesday 4 November 2009

25 years ago today...

I started my nurse training, yes I am aware how old that makes me sound. At 18 years old I thought I was very mature and worldy wise, I was in fact a wee girl dressing up and playing nurses.

I trained and then worked in many areas of nursing from 1984 till 1999, it remains the occupation I did for the longest time. The things I learned will stay with me forever.

The skills and experience nursing gave me are too many to mention but I owe a huge debt of gratitude to the NHS for training me and giving me the opportunity of meeting some amazing people and allowing me to grow up and become me.

So thank you for teaching me to become a much more rounded and grounded human and illustrating with crystal clarity how incredibly lucky I have always been.

Sunday 1 November 2009

All women turn into their mother

I don't mind that, I really like mine. I feel slightly sorry for my daughters though. For the people who don't know us in real life, my eldest beautiful daughter is just me but without the grey hair and wrinkles. We have the same tastes, the same gestures, expressions and are spookily similar.

She was out at last night and was talking to a friend's older brother who's home from uni.

EBD - "What are you studying?"

Friends older brother " I'm doing a PHD in computing"

and before eldest beautiful daughter could stop herself, she hooted derisorously and this fell out her mouth

"What, a Doctor of clickety, clickety and facebook?, would you give yourself peace!!!"

She said she could even hear me as she said it !

Friday 30 October 2009

10 things I did/places I went/people I saw in October

I went to London baby on the 8th to meet the very lovely Scrappy Sue and Mr Scrappy on their silver wedding anniversary tour. if you click on the link you can read about it and see what I think is the most flattering photo taken of me ever. It may be known to some of you that travel/driving/getting where I need to go is something of a challenege for me. That trip to London was immensely challenging, the Bakerloo line was closed and they asked us to use an altenative route, auntie no know an alternative route, auntie gets to the tube station to find it closed due to overcrowding, auntie has no feckin clue what bus to get, auntie spends the time waiting for the tube station to re open reading tube map, auntie ended up on several tubes and eventually arrives in the Ace Motorbike Cafe where she had exactly 1 hour before she had to do it all in reverse. This time it's much easier, Sue's sister is also with us and she lives in London, she gets us on the train as we can go some of the way together, she puts me on the tube to get to St Pancras so I can get the train back to auntiegwens house, but she puts me on the wrong tube. I would be stone mad if I had to live in London and do that daily.

The very next day October 9th I spent 7 hours and all of my Friday evening driving to Glasgow. The M6 is a bitch as usual, the children are asleep in minutes as usual and I feel so much better when I cross the border as usual. We went to see Billy Connolly on the Saturday evening and had a blast. It was a very Glasgow orientated show and he said how he felt this visceral pull about his home city and I know only too well what he means. No matter where I live and how long I stay away, this is where I belong.

My gadget mad dad having exhausted every possibility of gadget purchase has extended his repetoire, gadget purchasing for others. He wants to buy my mum a laptop for Christmas. My mother would want a laptop like I would want a subscription to The Guardian or the Daily Mail. She is getting a Sony Vaaio in pink. I am now the proud owner of a Tomtom XL Classic sat nav and my children now have a Wii. My dad has been poorly, I worry, my dad smokes like a chimney and it's now caught up with him. I worry, a lot.

After having a week to recover the following Thursday the 15th finds me back on the train to London to accompany NB to see Echo and The Bunnymen at the Camden Roundhouse, no, he has no idea why either. And he bought 4 tickets. Strangely enough no one wanted to come with us. The first thing he said as he met me off the train was "You look grumpy" that's what travelling in London does to me, makes me look like the wrath of God. The gig was packed, I mean absolutely rammed, I had no clue there were that many Bunny fans. However, himself and I agreed twas a poor gig. Never mind, we still have McIntyre and Ross to look forward to.

I get a homecooked meal from my lovely friend Sixy. I only get homecooked meals if other people do them. I agree with her that it might be slightly churlish of me to report my mother to social services for neglecting me in that department. I had a lovely evening with her and her bidey in, I heart them all and not just because they feed me. They listen to my "I'm so crap at dates it's amusing" stories too. No, I don't know what they get out of being friends with me either.

Matthew chief matey boy who belongs to the Eldest Beautiful Daughter came home from uni for a weekend. He is living in halls, EBD went to visit but refused to stay, there was a doughnut in the shower (jam, I asked too) and cereal down the toilet. This makes her worried, she now realises she will find it difficult to live with others. So he has to come see us. He'd missed us, we'd missed him. Muchly.

I went to Brighton with Eldest Beautiful Daughter, it is now officially where I want to live. I loved the shops, the pubs, the restaurants and most of all I loved the sea and the walking along beside it. Even in the rain. I loved it.

I was wooed fairly seriously this month, posh chocs, red roses and when I said I was uncomfortable with expensive gift giving every date, he gave me a home cooked meal (where he baked his own bread) and after dinner took me into the garden where he gave me fireworks (the kind you have on November 5th, the regular kind, the terms fireworks is not a euphanism, just clearing that up for you) This makes him the nicest man I am reluctant to have a relationship with this year.

I am a poorly girl. I have a cold, if I was male I'd have man flu. I am wide awake and it's the middle of the night. I will find it extremely difficult to be dynamic at work tomorrow. Yes, actually, your auntie is dynamic at work on a daily, nay hourly basis, thank you very much

I finally, finally did my feckin tax return. How come I work so hard and am so tired but I only earned fourpence and a caramel?

Monday 26 October 2009

10 things I really hate about the way I look

My height - I so wish I was taller. It is so hard to be authorative to your children when you have to look up to do so.

My hair - I now have grey and I can't always be arsed to colour it.

My teeth - not straight and yes Mother I do regret not wearing my braces now just like you told me I would.

My wrinkle - oh I have a fair few but I have 1 that is on my left hand side of my mouth that really bothers me.

My not being a size 8 anymore - I am too small to carry off any other size

My boobs - I cannot carry off sophisticated chic when I am this curvy and men do talk to them, a lot.

My freckles - I have tons of them in the summer

My legs - runners legs, best kept hidden

My body hair - I hate the faff of keeping legs, eyebrows, Hollywood in shape but I have been brainwashed into thinking hair is unpleasant.

My lack of youthful glow - if you can buy some in a bottle please let me know from where.

Ranty auntie has left the building, normal middle aged Pollyanna service will resume tomorrow. I blame it on the back to work after being on holiday and still not doing that feckin tax return personally.

Thursday 22 October 2009

10 things I liked and disliked in October

Me Likeys

Afternoon naps, God, they're good, I've had a few this week as I've been on holiday.

Not having to get up early, me likey muchly, I don't think I've been dressed before lunchtime. Again due to being on holiday.

Reading, I have read soooooooooooooooooooo much, currently completely re reading Joanna Trollope and enjoying all over again. Is there a "I've got time cos I'm on holiday" theme emerging

Cake, twas the Beautiful Baby Daughters birthday so I made the 44th chocolate birthday cake and enjoyed eating it too.

Writing, I have managed to do some both here and on Mad Manic Mamas This means I feel much less guilty and I like that.

Me No Likeys

I am getting fat. This is entirely my own fault. I have stopped running but not stopped eating, I am a stupid woman who is becoming enormous.

I still haven't done that feckin tax return, procratination thy name is auntiegwen.

My house is still not completely clean and I have been on holiday, I have been reading and having afternoon naps, my excuse for having a messy house is usually work, that is acceptable to my slightly Presbyterian soul, being on holiday and not cleaning is just slatternly and not acceptable.

I still haven't ran this week and it's Thursday, see above for the I've been too busy at work excuse and how that doesn't hold up with the fact I'm on holiday.

Ucas forms, EBD and decisions, not the best combination. Should you wish to hear the full 3 verses and the disco chorus of that one, it's on the MMM site And before any of my slightly less tactful friends wade in, yes I do know where she gets it from.

Tuesday 20 October 2009

10 things I heart about my baby teen

Today the Beautiful Baby Daughter becomes a teenager. She is the most complex of my children and is the one that we have the most fireworks with. But our puss cat makes us our family.

She is always busy, she never complains of being bored, she will just find herself doing something, very rarely does she just relax.

She is hugely creative, she can paint, draw, design and make things.

She is scared of no one and nothing. If you piss off the puss cat, she'll not be long in letting you know.

She is the incredibly capable and self contained, she is the most domestic of us all, quite able to look after herself and us. She could actually leave home tomorrow and be fine, unlike her sister who will be at least 36 before she is a fully functioning human.

She has her own taste and won't be swayed. She lives with a house full of indie rock n roll afficionados and she likes Take That and Girls Aloud. And cares not a jot when she's mocked.

She will write you little notes and give you certificates telling you how good you are at things. These are priceless. Ditto my "Tokens of Glory" - every year on Mothers Day, she makes me a beautiful box and inside I get some tokens, I get a "cup of coffee on demand" sometimes a "tidy up with no moaning" and my very favourite is an "end an argument with Lucy" one. If you knew her, you would know how good that one is. She is a shit hot arguer, top barristers practice their debating skills with her.

She is very smart, focused and will work for what she wants. She really just goes for it. This is refreshing after the other 2 laid back work shy articles I've reared.

She is an incredibly beautiful child, delicate and graceful. She moves like a dancer, has amazing bone structure and the crowning glory of that titian hair. Photo's never do her justice, she would have painters reaching for their brush to capture her colouring.

She is loving, sweet and kind. Even though she lives with us and we are a challenge for her on a daily basis, she remains loving, sweet and kind.

She still looks like a baby when she's asleep, the thumb still remains very firmly in the rosebud mouth and the cheek still has that babyish curve.

Happy Birthday to my baby, a teenager today, you are precious beyond words but you are mo chridhe, my heart.

Friday 16 October 2009

10 things I really have to do in October

Have a weeks holiday, I am exhausted, my new job has tired me out. I have worked for 13 weeks straight, I am unused to this as I have done term time only since the year 2000. Yes, I know, welcome to the real world with no teachers holidays, thank you I am now one of the regular people. Stop laughing or I'll put you on the naughty step.

My tax return. It is due on October 30 th and no I can't do it online for the Jan deadline as I have to do a paper return because of foreign income.

Clean my house, it is truly filthy, I am a lazy article. It's shameful.

Go out of my house to let my ex parents in law come to visit their grandchildren. This is why the house will be cleaned. My Eldest Beautiful Daughter will not go to her dad's house where they are staying. If I go out they will be able to see her. I don't think that my presence would enhance their enjoyment of their visit somehow.

I need to finish shopping for Beautiful Baby Daughter's birthday on the 20 th, on that day I will become the mother of 3 teenagers.

Remember my niece's birthday on October 26th, my sister gets very shirty with me when I forget, will someone remind me ?

Run, my trainers haven't been on at all this month. Consequently I am getting lardy, last night I told my friend I had no wobbly bits at all. I lied.

Write a post for Madmanicmammas I am a piss poor contributor, I am so sorry Saz and Fhina, you work so hard at it and I am not doing my share.

Actually read this months book for book group, I have been a very bad book group member and I have not read the last 3 books I've been set.

That's only 9 I know, I have time for mischief now ! aw it's a happy wee auntie I am this lovely day. Wherever you are I hope you are as happy as I am right now.

Tuesday 13 October 2009

10 things I've been asked to give you.

I have been given a lovely "Honest Scrap" manly award from Matthew. Again my computer says no, it is a corrupt image (like the lovely Rachels) I fear I need a new computer. If you haven't read Matthew go forthwith, he writes with elegance and pace and poise. As part of the award I have to give you 10 unknown facts about me. As I am a great big fat show off I fear there is nothing left but as I am a great spouter of too much infomation, here goes

If I was a boy I would have been called John.

My parents got married the day JFK was assassinated, kinda put a dampner on their day.

I am shit scared of mice.

The smell of eggs (especially scrambled) makes me gag, I have on several occassions thrown up, most notably when trying to feed an elderly patient the hated scrambled eggs.

My ringtone is "For reasons unknown" by The Killers

I have had 3 completely natural (yep that's right, no pain killers AT ALL) childbirths. No stitches either and I was in labour for a collective total of a smidge over 6 hours. My dad said I am a peasant, I could give birth and be back at work in the fields an hour later.

I have a mole at the top of my left thigh and another right of centre on my tummy.

I am not remotely ticklish, anywhere.

I have been in love 4 times.

My neck and my back are ridiculously sensitive, ridiculously.

I am meant to give the award to 10 people and they then have to do the tag. As I cannot pass on the award can I still tag 10 of you? Please feel free to do the tag nick the award picture from Matthews blog and tell him auntiegwen sent you.

Thursday 8 October 2009

10 things I will never do again

Wear leggings and I'm sure we all understand why. And are probably grateful too.

Date a Virgo (eventually I have learned, took me long enough but hey) They are no good with Leo's like me.

Ditto management or IT consultants (I know, I'm crap and I pick the same type over and over again) And we're not going to mention the BMW drivers either. No more will you (unkind friends) be able to call me the executive shag.

Be as horrid to my boyfriends, mea culpa, I have been a crap girlfriend. Please, ex boyfriends if you still read me, accept the apology but don't feel the need to enlighten the other readers, they still like me.

Get divorced, I don't even want to begin my divorce maths (if I didn't get divorced and have to spend ten grand I could buy...) it's a feckin lot of Louboutins or Choos or Prada bags or even a new car, or a round the world trip, feck it's so depressing, just wasted money. The last time I spent anything like that I got a new frock, a party and a fortnight in the sunshine.

Be financially dependant on anyone.

Be complacent about my career, I have shocked myself at how ambitious I am becoming, truly, it's late blooming but ferocious.

Worry about how clean and tidy my house is. It will never be as clean and tidy as it used to be but I'm not the woman I was and I don't like the me I was then, so fair play.

Worry generally, it's a bit of a waste of effort, que sera sera.

Not appreciate how extremely lucky I am and what a fantastic life I have.

Tuesday 6 October 2009

10 Things I always lie about

Last October I posted a whole bunch of 10 themed posts. I kinda liked it so here we go again for 2009.

How many times it took me to get my maths 'O' level. And the grade.

How many attempts it took to pass my driving test. I can't actually remember the truth now.

How many sexual partners I have had. (incidentally I add some on to make me sound less boring) Currently if asked I fess up to 7,012.

I often tell people, with a very straight face that I am Lorraine Kelly's cousin, Rik my ex head of department believed that for months, he even went home and told his wife.

How much I earn. Someone once told me you should earn your age, I am very young still, in that sense only.

What weight I am. I have an official weight, like the Queen has an official birthday, sure where's the harm?, I can eat as many fruit and nut toblerones as I like then.

How many shoes and handbags I own. The total makes me sound shallow and obsessed.

How tall I am, I tell people I am taller, I always wear heels and lie .

How many classic books I have read. If I try and pass off Ulysses, War and Peace and that Salman Rushdie yoke, don't believe me. Ditto "The Alchemist"

What time I left home, I am perpetually late and always blame it on traffic, always.

Any other liars out there or am I on my own?

Sunday 4 October 2009


Aren't they lovely? I mean really so, so beautiful. The shoes of beauty if you will.

I just wanted to let you know that I had an amazing Saturday night, there was red wine, sneaky smoking, copious amounts of flirting and the sexy new shoes. And I didn't even have to leave the conservatory, I heart staying in on a Saturday night.

And this is why I look like I do this morning.

But it was worth it :) x

Friday 2 October 2009

My lovely weekend by auntiegwen age 43 and a bit

This weekend I could have been

a - in Amsterdam at a bloggy meet up seeing The Bitch who is Dutch and Penelope.

b - In Cambridge with an ex who is being very flirty.

c - Visiting another friend who lives far ish away for a weekend of gossip, giggling and wine.

This weekend I will be

a - having a 2 for 1 pub meal with my friend Eileen tonight, still nice but not quite Amsterdam.

b - unable to visit anyone unless they live within walking distance or on bus or train routes.

c - completely on my own. This never ever happens.

This is beacause

a - I am getting divorced and the ex mrauntiegwen is becoming mightily sniffy about my "extravagant lifestyle" yep, he actually did say that. Best not to pop off to Amsterdam this weekend then.

b - due to my own goldfish memory and the fact I am stupidly busy at work, I remembered on the 1st of October that my road tax runs out on the 30th September. So instead of walking to the post office and buying a disc, I thought "oh before I forget, I'll do it online, it'll be quicker"
completely forgetting it would have to be posted to me and now I can't feckin drive till it arrives.

c - and I am as cross as a bag of cats because this is the first time on 2 months on a Saturday night I will have no children and could get up to mischief.

oh yes it's a glum auntiegwen this weekend.

Wednesday 30 September 2009

You know you're not as young as you used to be...

When a beer at your last gig cost more than your first gig and that included chips and your bus fare home.

When you decide that you'd actually rather stay home in your jammies than go out on a collegues leaving do. On a Friday night too. In town. With bars. And the possibility of flirting, red wine and sneaky smokes. I was asleep by 9.30pm.

When you remembered that November 5th 1984 was the day you became a student nurse. And then you realised that was TWENTYFECKINFIVE years ago. Twenty five, Christ that shook me.

When you know the words to the song on the radio from the first time round original version. And you prefer it.

Maybe this next bit is for the girls? If you're a male reader come back another day, click away now, nothing to see here.

When you make a show of yourself in Next by laughing (and I mean I've had 3 kids and my pelvic floor's not as it was laughing) at the floral leggings. You realise that even bad fashion comes back around. I sent a picture message of them to my friend Lou in Edinburgh, she replied by email and sent a pic of us in maternity T shirts and floral leggings, how chic we looked.

When you prefer your fit-flops to your peerie heels. Okay, my head is hung very low in shame, me the queen of shoe porn, I know.

When you can't wait to take your bra off and not for the reason that you used to throw it off with gay abandon.

When you decide that being single is an actual benefit as you no longer have to upkeep your Hollywood.

Friday 25 September 2009

7 Best Gigs

I was given a really lovely "I heart your blog award" from the really lovely Really Rachel Unfortunately I can't show it as it says that my image is corrupt and yes, that is the first time anyone's ever used that phrase about me.

The award comes with a meme of 7 things. There have been 7 things missed about the UK - erm I'm still here, 7 personality traits - well you've heard them all before, everybody knows how weird I am, 7 songs on your ipod and Rachel gave us 7 long lost songs.

So I have to find a 7 for you. Without further ado, may I present my...

7 Best Gigs

The Stranglers - Glasgow Apollo 23rd November 1981 - my first gig and it has to be there because of that. It cost £3.50 and I earned the money from babysitting. I went with my first boyfriend who was called Alan Osprey, nickname Ospur, he was tall, dark hair, blue eyes and looked like Robin Cousins. Oh how I loved him. I wore a black shirt belonging to him, his leather bikers jacket, a black pvc rara skirt, fishnet tights and Dr Martin boots. My hair was severely backcombed and hairsprayed into a Siouxsie spike and I had lashings of black eye liner and also the black lippy and nail polish, yes my mother was very proud. I can't remember who supported them but was overgiddy with delight to be there, Ospur and I had chips afterwards and snogged all the way home on the bus. Bliss.

Simple Minds- Meadowbank 12th August 1989 - my 23rd birthday, I went with a big crowd of friends and as we walked along the London Road from where our flat was in Easter Road, we were passed by Jim Kerr and the band in a black limo as they travelled to the gig after being at the Hibernian ground. I loved Simple Minds and I got lifted onto the shoulders of the aptly named Big Rab (he's 6 foot 7) for a fair bit of it so had a good view. Only time I've ever been able to walk home after a gig, we had a party at our flat afterwards as well.

Runrig- Loch Lomond 22nd June 1991 - a beautiful day in a beautiful setting. Supported by The Big Dish and The Hothouse Flowers and others. Listening to the HF singing "I can see clearly" whilst looking down over the loch with the sun glinting on it is a fantastic memory. And to hear the 50,000 strong crowd join in with "Loch Lomond" for their final song and all the fireworks afterwards was an unmissable experience.

Texas- Nottingham 10th October 2005 - because it's the only time I've ever heard her sing live. She was out of this world, the finest voice of all time. Sad she didn't sing my favourite but her version of the Scissors Sisters "Take your Mama" was the highlight of a set that didn't have a duff note in it. She is unsurpassed.

The Killers- Dublin 21st August 2008 - my very favourite gig of all time. I love this band, the Beautiful Eldest Daughter and I had a fantastic time at Marlay Park, their first song that night was "For Reasons Unknown" which is the song I most identify with, my own personal theme tune and I would have paid all the money it took to get there just to hear that 1 song. They were utterly brilliant. We went back to see them in Belfast 6 months later and if anything the set was better but the atmosphere in Marlay Park couldn't be bettered so this gig wins.

Primal Scream- Nottingham 27th November 2008 - because it's the only gig I have ever missed most of. We arrived during "Rocks" which was the final song but we did get the 4 song encore and that was worth it. I would love to go see them again for the full gig. One of the funniest nights I've had in years.

Manic Street Preachers- Camden 29th May 2009 - fabulous gig, NB and I got really near the front, the band were great - I'd almost forgotten how good they were and how much I liked them, there was a fight right beside me and a drunken Irishman leaped a tube barrier on the way home to tell me I was beautiful. All in a day's work.

So there you have it, my 7 best gigs. Please feel to take the "I love your blog" bling off someones elses non corrupt image and have a go with your 7. You all know your auntie loves you.

Sunday 20 September 2009

White Lies

Nice photo, isn't it ? It was taken by NB my gig buddy at the Coldplay tour finale yesterday . Himself, The Boy (his son), Eldest Beautiful Daughter and I went to Wembley to see Coldplay.

We had to arrive early as we all wanted to see White Lies and they were the first band on, they were fab and we all agreed that we would have happily paid the £40 ticket price for their 40 minute set.

Next up were Girls Aloud and I had no notion that a band could be so truly dreadful, we lasted 1 and a half songs before leaving our seats in search of sanctuary, well sanctuary and chips. They sounded atrocious, the ginger one had forgotten to take her rollers out and as EBD said even their dancing was out of tune.

We could not be enticed back in by Jay Z who I'm sure was grand if you like that sort of thing or should I say ting or am I taking that too far ?

Well, I'll be the first to admit it that I'm not a massive Coldplay fan, I can see why people like them and all that but I've never bought any of their stuff. They put on a very good show. Here's my likey and no likey bit...

Me Likey

The fireworks and lit up world balloony type things around the stadium (I know, NME are gutted I don't write for them)

The fact that Mr Paltrow forgot some words and lost his place a few times also the few bum piano notes.

The atmosphere and the company I was in.

NB's dad dancing - tres tres amusant.

Their drummer was very good, I hadn't appreciated that before.

There was very little musical wanking (Turin Brakes did a ferocious amount of that last week) this is always good in my opinion.

Coldplay were on stage for just short of 2 hours.

Me no likey

The X factor bit, Simon Cowell spliced in on a big screen saying we were fabulous, Mr Paltrow and his 70,000 strong choir auditioning for the X factor was just a wee bit silly for me.

Their Billie Jean rendition but I didn't like the original either.

You couldn't buy chips on their own, c'mon.

Beer was £4 a flat pint.

So by musical maths it was a good gig as I had more me likeys than me no likeys.

Friday 18 September 2009

What I did this week.

I got into my beautiful car, drove lots, mostly in the wrong direction and very badly. I did find myself going from Essex to home via Cambridge at 3am on Monday morning, this is not usual or right, it made my friend laugh and this was not kind, hang your head in shame, you know who you are.

I went away on a course to Sheffield. I came back.

In between I stayed in a youth hostelly type of a place.

The food was strange, proper strange, I was served mushroom risotto (which was a lie, a big lie) with a side order of cabbage (yes, truly) which I believe was cooked by my dead granny in 1973.

The cell was freezing and the tiny bed squeaked.

I learned shit loads of stuff, mainly about how much work I will have to do to get my dept through a QA audit, I am knitting with smoke at the moment.

I made a new friend called Sam, me likey Sam muchly, she was subversive too and I would have liked her even if she wasn't Irish.

They did have wireless, not in my cell but in the main training room, I could not get onto blogger as it was a banned site, this made me sad. On the plus side, the trainers thought I was very conscientious and was working as opposed to skiving about trying to get on blogger and emailing friends.

I was missed by my children most muchly.

Now I am back, what have you been up to ?

Monday 14 September 2009

What to do in Sheffield?

By the time you read this I will be on a residential training course with my new job.

So from Monday to Thursday I will be up North.

In Sheffield at a place that sounds like the whirley I peg my washing out on.

I've been to Sheffield twice before, once to the Plug to see Glasvegas and another time to a fancy wine bar and restaurant that I can't bloody remember the name of! What is wrong with my memory?

So, suggestions on a postcard please, what can your auntie get up to up north?

Please feel free to text, email, comment etc, see you when I get back.

Friday 11 September 2009

Totally ready for real life

Scene 1

A mother's bedroom, around 8am, enter stage left a 17 year old child dressed in a bath towel and socks.

17 year old child/EBD - (in a ranty type of a voice) "Whose bloody idea was it to have mornings so feckin early?, what kind of a stupid idea was that?"

Mummy/auntiegwen - (in a soothing kind of a voice) "Aawh sweetie scone, you're not a morning person are you?"

17 year old child/EBD - (still in the ranty voice) "I don't like this game. I can't find my hair brush, my coco pops are too milky and my tea's too hot and I have lessons ALL day"

Mummy/auntiegwen - (still in the soothy voice) " Life's a bitch right enough" actually the tone had progressed to sarcastic then.

Scene 2

A 17 year old child's bedroom around 5.30pm. Child lying on bed wearing fleecy polka dot jammie bottoms, socks (of course) and a t shirt (child had put on jammies on return from school to have afternoon nap as needed to help function as part human but spilled yoghurt down jammie top and had to put t shirt worn to school back on) Enter Mummy stage right, on return from work.

EBD - "What kind of things do I have to do to live on my own at uni?"

AG - "Laundry, ironing, cooking NOT tinned alphabetti spaghetti or toast, shopping NOT for shoes and lip gloss, paying bills, gas, electric, phone, broadband, council tax, water, road tax, insurance, house, car and life, cleaning INCLUDING toilets, dust, hoover, polish, mop, wash dishes, getting to where you need to be BY YOUR OWN SELF, remembering things, buying things before you run out etc etc etc

EBD - "Well, I'm not going to grow up then. I've only looked at real life on the internet and it scares me. I'll just stay here and go to uni like it's school and nothing has to change "

EBD - " Look Mummy, I made a new game..." Child then makes a dinosaur with her fingers, walks it around and makes eating noises with it "num num num" "Look Mummy, I made a Larasaur" and giggles uncontrollably for a bit.

Yep, totally ready to leave home and function independently, totally.

Wednesday 9 September 2009

And I don't care.

I'm just going to say it.

You might not like it.

You might feel inclined to berate me or try to change my mind. Feel free (except you, Edge, you can be surprisingly persistent)

But I don't care

I don't like The Beatles and if I never have to listen to another one of their songs again, so much the better.

Yeah, yeah, yeah.

Monday 7 September 2009

Musings from me

Hello my little bloggy chums, how are you?

Myself and the beautiful children are well. Thank you for asking.

Eldest Beautiful Daughter is getting ready for her beloved Matthew (chief matey boy of about 2 years) to go off to uni, this is a teeny tiny bit tense for all those who live/visit chez auntiegwen. Can you imagine how it will be in 2 weeks whan he actually goes? No, I don't want to either.

The Beautiful Son has had his annual haircut, he tried to articulate what he wanted to the barber who ignored him and took his cash. It's not pretty, it looks like he needs a carer, I'm hoping he'll grow into it.

Beautiful Baby Daughter tidied her bedroom, proper tidy, Kim and Aggie tidy, but you probably knew that as it was on the 10 o'clock news.

School has returned but without me, the son has joined elder daughter at high school (we have a 3 school system so they change at 14 when they start GCSE coursework) so that leaves only the baby at middle school.

I love, love, love my new job. It's hard, it's challenging and I am busy like you wouldn't believe but I can see that I am actually making a difference and I am thriving on the challenge.

My facebook thingy is still bemusing me, do I want to be my friend Susan's friend Janice's neighbour on the farm? I think not, I killed the begonia my friend Ell bought me for my birthday (in 3 days) I begged her not to buy me a live thing, I can only manage children, all my plants die. I also can't work out how to send gifts back to people and then they might think I don't love them, I do I'm just crap at technology. I have shed loads of teenagers befriending me and I can't say no. And despite my very good friend's plea for a boyfriend for me, not one of her mates stepped up ??? Pourquoi, I ask myself. So after a few weeks I'm bored of it.

I've got masses of nights out planned, some gigs, some dinners and been invited to a bloggy meet up in Amsterdam.

So a very busy but very contented auntie at present. Normal middle aged Pollyanna service has resumed. And thank God for that.

Wednesday 2 September 2009


A huge thank you to all friends who commented, texted, emailed, called and visited me over the last week. I appreciate all your input, kind words and advice muchly.

I've pondered on this and thought it round and around and I've come to the conclusion that I really don't mind who reads what I write.

There's not really that much salacious stuff in here, the sex blog I write has had every gasp, groan and grunt in it, so no need to upset Grandma in Cyprus with that here. I jest, I jest.

And as much as I felt I didn't want Gordon to know what I was thinking, I now realise that I'm not that bothered, he's not involved in my life, I'm not interested in his, all that's left is indifference really.

So welcome to you all, the people who comment, the people who don't, the people who know me and those whom I've yet to meet. You are truly welcome to my little corner of blogland.

With love from

Wendy aka auntiegwen


Saturday 22 August 2009


My life is slightly tricky and sad at the moment. I am about to file for divorce and as much as I'd love your input and advice (especially on the subject of how I can raise the £50,000 I need to buy my ex out, actually if you do have a notion of how to do that, please email me) I now feel I can't talk about it.

For 2 and a half years I have spouted the gospel according to St Gwen on a largely unsuspecting public. I have loved every single minute of it, it really has been an absolute privilege to be a part of this community and I am massively grateful for what I have got out of blogging. I love my blog and I thought I could never give it up. It really has been my voice.

Despite the fact I have photos up I feel I have managed to retain anonymity if I have chosen it. Some bloggers I have chosen to be with in my regular life and have become very dear friends, some I am going to meet soon and some I most sincerely hope that we will meet face to face. There are very few people who knew the me I was before blogging.

My ex husband told me today he'd found and read my blog. Around 2 years ago.

He had logged onto my computer in my home and was intrigued by the auntiegwensdiary on the drop down bar.

So he went home to his house and google searched it.

And he found it.

And he was very upset by some of the things I have said about him and some of the family dynamics I have reported from my perspective.

He says that he has only skim read it and he is not interested in my blog. He feels that if it is on the Internet then it is in the public domain and he has a right to read it.

He was also extremely upset to find out I have kept in touch with a mutual friend of ours and that he didn't know about this. This is bothering him muchly because this friend is male.

I don't feel that I have badmouthed him in any serious way and I'm sure that if in time, the children read it that they would not feel that I had misrepresented any of the facts. I have at no time showed this blog to my parents or family or with the exception of the mutual friend, anyone who knows him. I have at no time mentioned our real name or our location.

I probably cannot articulate how I feel, he wanders around my house and invades my physical space whilst visiting our children but the thought of him invading my mental space is deeply disconcerting to me.

He assures me he'll never read it again but do I want to censor every word that I write?

Tuesday 18 August 2009

Confession Time

I know I have been very scathing in the past but I will fess up and admit I've joined facebook. So all you regular facebook users will have to keep me right, there are lots of things I still don't quite get and I have a fear I'll be bored with it very shortly.

Resist the urge to throw back your head and laugh like a muskateer as I have been mocked heartily by Edge for it already and I am still slightly confused by it all, especially by the wee thingy that pops up and someone is trying to talk to me, but I have managed to put a wee comment up or reply to my real friends.

I'm not sure of the etiquette of it all yet, I can't seem to refuse to be someone's friend even if I don't know them and in consequence have found myself never short of a wee bible verse or a life coaching kind of a homily.

I have some new friends already, I am very popular with American men. Even more popular with American men who run and also with American Pastor men and as for American Pastor men who run, they just love your auntie!

I am also quite popular with my daughter's friends, I don't accept them as friends though, just too weird, I always get slightly freaked when I read her friends (very middle aged) dad trying to be funny.

So I have it now and I have the American men but what do I do with it? The people I really know on it, I kinda know what they're up to, well as much as I need to know, I already like one of my friends less. I live with one of them and I definitely know enough about her life, I like it better in mummy denial land, so what am I doing with it? I already have the blog to spout off my rubbish.

So I'm thinking about lying on a grand scale with it, make myself look uber windswept and interesting (yes I know that's German, I thought maybe you were getting a bit bored with badly spelled French words and NB's practising his for his holiday to Precisionwithnohumourland.)

So can I say I've come into money ? off on a world trip and post pictures of where I'd like to go ? Can I post pictures of supermodels and say I've had surgery ? Say I'm shagging all the celebrities on my celebrity shag list all at the same time?

I am wondering though if it's okay to say I'm in a relationship with David Tennant one week and then David Ginola the next ?

Where's the harm ?

Saturday 15 August 2009

Decisions Decisions

For the record I know I'm the world's most indecisive woman, I do know that. But sometimes life gives me awful dilemmas. Really awful, I apologize now if someone is having real troubles in their life and have popped in here to hear me wittering on, I know I'm being shallow.

I have some money, this is an unusual event in my life, this is due to me being the hardest person in the world to buy a birthday present for, apparently. Can you feel my eyebrow being raised at that?

I have a choice, I can buy


Christian Louboutains that are the sexiest shoes I have ever seen.

Black as sin.

Beautiful supple strokable leather.

Soft as skin.

Studded as everyone needs a bit of edge in their life.

They have the mighty red soles.

They are less than half price.

I have the money.

Again, the beauty of the red soles, appreciate the shoes some more, don't drool on your keyboard though.

or I can buy a sat nav.

Thought so, me too.

Wednesday 12 August 2009

Another year older

How can I be another year older? Fortyfeckinthree now ! Jesus, Mary and Holy St Joseph, I must now officially be half way to being dead.

So what precisely did I achieve from last birthday to this one?

Didn't kill any of the beautiful children - for which I should be due a medal at the very least.

I visited Dublin, Belfast, Prague and went to Turkey 3 times. I also had a few trips back to Glasgow and some to London.

I saw Russell Kane at the Y and I pretended to be gay with my friend C, Russell Kane didn't believe us, he was very good though. I went to the Leicester Comedy Festival preview show and that was tres amusent, I particularly liked Jared Christmas and John Richardson.

Gig wise this was a streemly good year, streemly. I saw The Killers twice in Dublin and Belfast, Bloc Party suppoted them in Dublin, Glasvegas twice in Wolverhampton and Sheffield, White Lies supported them in Wolverhampton, I saw Primal Scream's encore in Nottingham, Doves at Brixton Academy and the Manic Street Preachers at the Camden Roundhouse.

I also taught a gazillion lessons including my last one.

I started a new job with office perks.

And I still found time to blog 137 posts just to keep you in the loop. Selfless to the core, that's me.

When I write it down, my life is not nearly as boring as I make out !

Monday 10 August 2009

Things that have rendered me momentarily speechless

I know that according to the google searches that I am the queen of the comeback and I have been known to lob out an occasional smart arse remark. I, am however, sometimes completely lost for words. In this last week this has happened more than once, I am recovering nicely now though.

Male friend commenting on an old photo of me as a 15 year old
"I'd have shagged you."

ag - hoping he meant as a teenager himself and not now as a man of middle years. I am trying to be tactful here, in case he gets offended I originally wrote nearly 50.

John, friend of my parents we went to visit on Friday night
"Grace, I thought you said she'd lost a lot of weight? " "No, you did, you told me she was like a stick insect, she is not" "Ah, well, compared to her sister she is I suppose"

ag - I don't know who was more mortified, my mother or me, probably my mother, I thought she might have another stroke there and then. He did however pop round on Saturday to apologize, bringing me some roses as he knew he'd been tactless.

Text from my Beautiful Baby Daughter who is staying up in Scotland for a week with my parents (so is The Beautiful Son)
Jack said I touched his bum but I didn't and Nana called me a pervert, that was not nice

ag - I didn't think that would be a word my mum would use in general conversation never mind conversation with my children.

Gadget Mad Dad on return from a car boot sale on Sunday morning
"Picked myself up a wee laptop for £25, not got a charger but I've got a few out in the shed"

ag - this is a man who has an all singing all dancing computer that he replaces annually and still hardly uses it, what does he need a laptop for? This is a man who has just spent £15,000 yep that's right fifteen thousand pounds on premium bonds, he's not short of a bob or two, what is he buying an ancient old laptop at a car boot for ? and why in the name of all that's holy did he buy one that had no feckin charger?

Incidentally, he spent all of Sunday trying every charger in the house (yep, that included phone, electric shavers, all his power tools and even their wee black and decker dustbuster wee hoovery thing to pick up crumbs trying to fit into his bargain, no matter how many times I told him they wouldn't work, he would not admit defeat.

Thursday 6 August 2009

auntie goes away

Just a little note to let you know I'm off to The Mother Country at feckit'searly o'clock in the morning. In case you pop in to look for me and I'm not here.

If you're a bitty bored and your feck count is down or your would you give yourself peace level is dropping or you just miss me, you can

a) text or ring me

b) sulk for a bit at my outrageous selfishness (you know who you are)...

c) go read what I wrote here (no comments on how I am becoming a right old bloggy tart, being unfaithful to agd and putting it about a bit post wise !)

I'm going home to have my fix and will return fully Glasmentalled up with quaint tales of the natives of the little fishing village on The Clyde.

Wednesday 5 August 2009

I heart Google searches

I love my stats on the google searches of what bring people to my blog. Hours and hours of entertainment !

The pick of this week's bunch is this one, from Tamil Madhu in India, I've left the original spelling.

mifs and aunties hot

Walk right this way...

Sunday 2 August 2009

Apple of my eye

When I was a little girl I lived with my maternal grandparents.

My Grampa was the person in the world I loved the most, he was my world.

He was a very ordinary man, he married my Gran and they had 2 daughters, the youngest of whom is my mother. His family came over from Ireland at the turn of the century and my Grampa was the oldest. He had a brother called Richard and a sister called Sarah.

My great Uncle Ricky was an engineer in John Brown's shipyards. He had masses of hobbies and was very well travelled. He was very healthy, cycling and hillwalking, he was a very talented painter, my mother still has lots of his work and also the painting he taught me to do when I was 5. He was a violinist, he made all his own instruments and I am lucky enough to still have one. He played the fiddle for The Caledonian and Strathspey Fiddle Society. He was a conscientious objector during the Second World War but didn't go to jail as he was in a reserved occupation. He died 11 years ago of Mesothelioma which is a lung tumour which is caused by exposure to asbestos, of which there was plenty in the Glasgow shipyards of the time.

My great Aunt Sarah had very bad spinal damage and was very hunchbacked, she became a hugely talented dressmaker to make her own clothes and she made many of mine as a child, I remember with great fondness a long green checked taffeta party dress and to match it, a floor length bottle green velvet hooded cloak ala Scottish Widows. I still have her Singers treadle sewing machine from 1929 and it still works. I remember being allowed to open the drawers and play with all the reels, lots of beautiful colours. It was my ambition when I was a wee girl to be taller than my auntie Sarah, I think I did it about age 8. She did a degree in Russian and was a translator for the Russian Embassy. Neither she or my Uncle Ricky ever married and they lived together and travelled all through Russia, Hungary, Bulgaria and the Czechoslovakia. This was quite unusual in the 1950's and 1960's most Glaswegians went "doon the water" to Rothsay or Gourock at the Fair fortnight Glasgow holidays. As I say, the 2 of them lived together until she died after a short illness just before I got married.

Every Saturday, my Gran and Grampa would take me on the bus in Glasgow and to John Smith's bookshop and every week I was allowed to choose a book, they must have bought me hundreds. We then went next door to the health food shop where we'd pick up whatever Auntie Sarah and Uncle Ricky wanted, they ate stuff like natural yoghurt, cottage cheese and malt extract (which I got a spoonful every day in the winter and I loved) again not your usual Glasgow fare. Then we got the bus to Drumoyne and to visit Auntie Sarah and Uncle Ricky, I was always given a cup of tea and that was the only tea I ever drank. They always had unusual things at their house, I loved the Babouchkas and the ukelele. I liked the Russian childrens books with their colourful pictures and the strange writing. Sometimes I'd be taken to Elder Park on the way home.

My grandpa was a joiner and worked in Fairfields shipyards in Govan. He had a huge pride in his work and to him the highest praise was to say something was "Clyde built". He took a tin can into work to drink his tea out of and my Gran used to make his "pieces" (sandwiches) every day wrapped in the wax paper that the Mother's Pride plain loaf came in. He worked in that shipyard all his life and when he was made redundant early in 1975 he lived off his savings, never dreaming of signing on and claiming the unemployment benefit he was entitled to. It was a matter of his pride and self respect. He had a quiet dignity that I think so many of that generation of working class people had.

He made the bed I slept in, my beloved dolls house and a wee garden bench for me to sit on. He loved his garden and he had 2 beautiful lilac trees, one white and one lilac, a golden privet hedge and his pride and joy were his roses. He loved photography and there are a million photos of me and my gran but hardly any of him. He put them onto slides and we often had an evening where he'd put up his white screen and rig up the projector and we'd have a show.

I was the first grandchild and it would be fair to say that I was doted upon. He used to call me the apple of his eye, he carried my picture in his wallet alongside a St Christopher to keep me safe. He would talk endlessly of me and thrust my photo on anyone he met. Nobody was more loved than me.

I always remember him wearing trousers, a jumper my gran had knitted him, a tweed overcoat and always a flat cap.

When I was 9, he and my gran went on holiday to Ireland with my aunt and her family. Whilst he was there he suffered a mild stroke, he sent me a postcard and the writing on it was hardly legible, my gran had to finish it and address it. By the time it arrived he was dead. He went to bed that night and never woke up.

I wasn't allowed to go to his funeral but he was buried with the dark red rose I had cut from his garden.

My life was never the same.

Francis McTominie
20.05.13 - 30.07.75

An ordinary man to the world, an extraordinary man to me.

Friday 31 July 2009

Why I avoid the gym

Now you may remember a little while ago I told you that my bosoms were expanding at an alarming rate, well the rest of me has caught up with them.

I am getting fat.

So to the gym I go. Like all normal people I pay my money but don't actually go. It's in the school I was a teacher at.

I was only in the place about 2 minutes when the manager guy comes up and exclaims his surprise at seeing me there as as he puts it "That's the first time in 2 years I've seen you here"

This is a lie, I took both the year 12 AS and the year 12 Btec group there to do a risk assessment as part of their course.

I smile politely and start torturing myself on the cross trainer. He follows me round a bit and chats. I don't do chat at the gym, I have to take my ipod out and I am not best pleased. He tells me how he sees me at school and how he knows I'm a member but don't go. He tells me how he thought "Don't know what she's doing but she looks good on it". He follows me to the thigh machines, I can't remember how to adjust the chair, he shows me and tells me how if I went regularly I'd know that.
He remarks on my inner thigh strength. I am getting more than a little annoyed and faintly disturbed. He follows me to the treadmill and then the mat where I do some sit ups, critiqued by him. He tells me how good I look for my age "You're 42 right ?" I am seriously creeped out.He follows me downstairs and as I am scanning my card to leave, he tells me to make sure the card is a good 6 inches away, he give me what he thinks is a suggestive wink. He tells me how mature women know what they want from life.

I resist the urge to throw back my head and cackle, I know nothing matey, except I will be finding a new gym.


Wednesday 29 July 2009

Picures of your auntie

If you would like to see what I looked like as a teenager pop along to madmanicmamas and have a look at the cut of me, I was a really bonny poppet. MMM is a blog about parenting teens, the main work is done by Saz and Fhina and I ship up occasionally and throw my tuppenyworth in.

Also appearing on the t'internet today is a photo of my foot, it's a guessing game on Lady Penelope's blog. Like my eldest beautiful daughter she has a phobia about feet and as we are guesting her blog for her as she suns herself in sunny Rhodes, the 9 of us have flashed our tootsies, an idea beautifully crafted by Dutchbitch. Please feel free to play along and guess which one is me.

So not only 2 pictures of me but 2 posts appear IN ONE DAY. See Edge, it can be done... albeit with piss poor grammar and punctuation (from me, not the other bloggers)

I'll have to have a lie down now !

Welcome to the House of Fun

This is truly a fairly typical and nondescript day in our lives.

On Monday night I was searching for the pasta pot and the colander I need to make dinner with. I looked in the proper cupboard where it lives, I looked in stupid cupboards where offspring might place in anyfeckin where as part of their disgruntlement at having to do any work IN THE HOLIDAYS, I looked in the dishwasher.


I asked Eldest Beautiful Daughter if she knew where it might be, she tells me last time she saw it The Beautiful Son had put it in her bedroom when she was in the shower.

Porquoi ?

Who knows what goes on in his head, he often puts odd things in your bedroom or shoves stuff under your door.

EBD goes to front door and shouts at TBS who is throwing a rugby ball about with Ollie and terrorising the neighbours at the same time "Hey, Goldilocks, where's the pasta pot and colander?"

and his answer, I kid you not...

"In my room, the colander's behind my telly and the pasta pot's in my wardrobe"

Of course, silly me

The girls and I eat, himself's disappeared with Ollie and outwith shouting distance. Beautiful Baby Daughter only has a token complaint about having to eat pasta instead of the full 3 verses and the disco chorus of what a remarkably mean mummy I am for making her eat it. Could I be winning the pasta war ?

After tea, EBD asks BBD if she can borrow her ipod headphones, EBD goes through headphones like you wouldn't believe, she must have had at least 10 pairs in 2 years. BBD says no, EBD has already broken a set of hers, I go upstairs and hide my ipod and headphones. From downstairs I hear EBD...

"What ever happened to sharing? meant to be a family, blah blah blah, more ranting along these lines"

and I tune in again and hear

"Don't come looking to me for nail polish remover"

and then I glance over and see EBD's nail polish remover on my bedside table so I start the bad Mummy skulk of shame along landing to replace borrowed nail polish remover

and get caught

and get a lecture about borrowing things without asking

and then get the lecture about sharing

I spend rest of night reading blogs, emailing and texting in my bedroom like a sulky teenager. This is why we need a proper grown up to come keep order.

On Tuesday morning, TBS's plate of pasta remains in fridge, when he surfaces I ask him why he didn't eat it when he got back from Ollies.

"You didn't tell me to"

and I reply that at 14, maybe he should have known that when I was looking for the pasta pot etc that tea was imminent and he shouldn't have gone off. Also, when did I ever have to remind him to eat ? Didn't his stomach remind him ?

Apparently the first 25 years of parenting are the worst !

Monday 27 July 2009

Management Schmanagement

In my new job I will have to organise things and I have a mahoosive project to get going that is both time and budget constrained, get me, I've got the jargon off already. I have never done this before so I am massively calling in favours from everyone I know who could possibly help me. I am doing some work myself, it just may not feel like that to everyone I am pestering at present.

On Saturday I was given the "Brilliant Project Management" book by a lovely man who is very probably sorry I've given up teaching. He is in the same line of work as me and I only seem to talk to him about work stuff now. I think that the book may be a hint as he is too polite to tell me to stop asking him questions.

So I am reading it, honest, and I promise when it gets going I'll have another topic of conversation for you all.

I did actually have a book of my own that I was using, found it quite helpful too.

Friday 24 July 2009

I Belong to Glasgow

If my week gets any more exciting I'm going to have to bulk buy Tena lady pants.

For myself and the beautiful children on Saturday October 10th are going to Glasgow, which you will agree is exciting enough in itself.

The highlight of this trip will be at 8pm

We will be seeing his royal Billyness.........


I haven't seen him live in over a decade, the children have never seen him live so that will be brilliant but the icing on the cake is to see him at home.



Wednesday 22 July 2009

The Executive Life

Here is my disclaimer before I start.

I know I'm a sad article.

I am overgiddy with excitement because at my new job...

I have an office.

I have my own desk, I have never had my very own desk before.

I have a chair that I can raise or lower and twirly round on (and I have, more than once)

They gave me a puter and a work mobile phone.

But the best bit? the most OMG moment... they have ordered business cards for me, with my very own name and fancy job title I now possess written on them !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I cannot tell you how streemly cited I was at that.

I am very nearly a grown up.

Monday 20 July 2009

Turkish Delight

I have returned from The Beautiful House leaving behind the big round yellow thing in the sky that makes you warm and cheerful. What happened to the summer ? Did it miss me and follow me overseas ? I'm feckin freezing now. Not to mention a tad apprehensive about my new job that starts today, send lots of positive vibes my way.

I may subject you to gratuitous shots of sunshine and the beautiful children, you may hear of daily ice creams consumed whilst lying on a lilo bobbing around in my pool and Bombay Sapphire's and bitter lemon drunk with the sun on my face and peace in my soul. You may be told of how the change of kitchen and vacuum cleaners do me the world of good.

But the best things were the conversations, sat on our terrace my beautiful children and I talked every single day, at breakfast, at lunch, in restaurants every night and after dinner we would walk back to the villa, light the candles, listen to music, sometimes we danced but every single night we talked.

My son told me he felt that he used to make his dad angry all the time when he lived with us and as he put it "Because he doesn't have to have me all the time he likes me more" and how I felt such a surge of sorrow for my beautiful son followed with such a surge of love for him. It is true that they had a very difficult relationship and one of the positives of our new mummy and kids life has been the fact that their relationship has improved.

We spoke about what they wanted to do and their hopes and dreams and aspirations. They asked me what I wished for and I realised that I have everything I want, absolutely everything that is essential for my happiness was there, sat around that table. That is one of my truly precious memories. I love them so very, very much, they are my life and my heart, mo chridhe.

Saturday 11 July 2009

auntiegwens guide of how not to date

I couldn't resist this one, and before anyone who's googled in gets humpty, I'm not an expert, so this should be read with a light sprinkling of tongue in cheek but you don't need a full dose of bitter irony for it.

I became single for the second time at the age of forty, which I also referred to as "feckin forty" quite a lot. The first period of singledom ended when I was nineteen. I can truly say that being single never bothered me for the first 19 years, they were a doddle, I am just wondering if the second period of singledom will be as long and as carefree. The dating world of the new millenium is a million miles away from the 20th century one I had experienced.

The first time I was single Michael Jackson was black, George Michael was straight and everyone had pubic hair. Advice in magazines was always about getting boys to call you or how to clean your oven or knit your own boyfriend. They never ever included such articles instructing you on how to give the perfect blowjob or an out of 10 rating for battery operated ladies toys.

I am the last of the generation of good girls. We were the ones who didn't sleep with anyone except our long term boyfriends and it took a serious amount of time before that happened. We were brought up to think that good girls don't. This was the generation before ladettes. Anal sex was only for gay men and a pearl necklace was what you wore on your wedding day.

There was no facebook, internet dating, speed dating, texting (clean, flirty or downright dirty), no mobile phones for phone sex or with cameras to send naked knob shots and no webcams for any kind of virtual and technological shenanigans. If I was going to facilitate someones sexual "happy ending" I was always present.

From November 1985 you can fast forward through a relationship of 21 years and 3 children and get to August 2006 when I technically became single for the 2nd time.

The second time I was single it became clear to me that a 40 year old mother of 3 may not be every one's dream date whereas a nubile 19 year old student could have her pick. There was also the issue of where to meet men, at 19 I would go to the pub after work wearing my student nurses uniform, job done. At 40 I no longer had my uniform and I fear I would have been more Hattie Jaques whereas at 19 year I would have been more Barbara Windsor.

At 19 I had a crowd of mates, all single and available to go out anytime and up for going anywhere. If there was a film I wanted to see or a holiday I wanted to go on, there was always someone to go with. I was never starved of adult company. At 40 all my friends were married and no one is available for nights out because they are too knackered with their kids, their job, the endless cleaning, ferrying offspring to activities etc etc etc. They do not want to go out, that means they have to get out off their jammies, put make up on, persuade husbands or arrange babysitters and then be depressed at how much things cost and how old they are, they want to sleep and who can blame them?

At 19 I was flirty and funny and I did not ever worry about what to say to boys because usually their tongue was in my mouth fairly quickly. At 40 I realised I didn't have a notion of how to talk to men and I always felt faintly ridiculous when someone tried to kiss me.

I don't enjoy dating at all. I accept that if I want the fringe benefits of being in a couple then I have to date. I often feel like I am on a job interview and if I have to explain what I get from blogging 1 more time I will scream.

So I have tried to clarify some points that I have gone a bit wrong on myself, sure there's no point in there being more than 1 of us getting the reputation of being a bad date.

What I have learned - How not to date

Do not talk to men like you talk to your female friends. Be very careful in your choice of conversational topics, they are unlikely to be impressed that you had 3 natural childbirths and that your son weighed 9 pounds 11 ounces, this will make them wonder what effect that had on the part of your anatomy that they may wish to explore at a later stage.

Do not feel free to rip apart their taste in music or the car they drive or what they wear. Even if it kills you to bite your tongue and there is a joke screaming to be made, resist at all costs. Your bitchy sarcastic sense of humour doesn't make you attractive to men at all.

Best not to mention that you read your horoscope every day and that you know what astrological signs are compatable with your Leo (Aries and Leo) and which are bad (Virgo and Cancer) This makes you sound weird.

Do not mention your ex or ex's. This is tricky as my ex is the reason I live where I live and the "Tell me why you left your own country?" chat always happens. This also rules out a lot of good conversational topics (point 1) such as places you've been on holiday, this is usually a good topic and if you can mention your trip to Paris or New York or Barcelona without mentioning who accompanied you, then do your best travelogue.

Do not mention your kids too much. They are not cute and sweet to anyone else except you and your immediate family. Mine are not cute and sweet to anyone, even me.

Some men think women who have cats are worth avoiding (sorry Lisa, maybe only British men think cat lovers are odd) If you love your cat and he sleeps on your bed, you have a photo of him as your screensaver and you speak to your cat in a ickle baby voice and refer to yourself as mummy, don't tell your date.

Don't be tempted to go for the 3rd glass of wine, in my case it's the 2nd. It may make you feel relaxed and you think you are having some flirty banter and witty repartee, the bon mots are tripping silkily and seductively off your tongue and you think you are being so funny that you wonder how much it would cost you to put on a one woman show at the fringe. This is your cue to stop drinking, have a diet coke or a water. You're not being entertaining, you're getting pissed and he either thinks he's getting lucky or he's getting scared.

When your date tells you that you are so sexy he means he is horny. Every man I have ever dated has told me I was the sexiest woman they had ever met. This is pish, I am not remotely sexy, even when I try, which to be fair isn't that often. Do not be fooled.

At the end of the evening do not be surprised if they wish to do more than kiss you on the cheek. They may wish to take the knickers off you. You don't even know each others surnames but some people are more than happy to have knowledge of you that would rival your gynaecologist.

I'm off to The Beautiful House for a week, see you when I get back.