Tuesday 28 December 2010

Christmas present buying for boys

If you need a proper "auntiegwens guide to" I can write one but if you are a boy with a short attention span this idea would do.

Buy a beautiful handbag for your beloved.
Inside the beautiful handbag, place a surprise present.
For maximum effect it should look like this

This type of behaviour makes women (well, women in the auntiegwen household) very, very enamoured of the man who bought the present.

Friday 24 December 2010

Tech feckin ology part eleventy squillion

I have fecked my new laptop. It has died.

I am writing this on a borrowed laptop, in someone elses kitchen, in Kirby Muxloe (that is a real place)

I should be at home, doing mummy type Christmas prep. I am not. I am 2 glasses of the red down with no tea.

I wish you all a very merry Christmas. I will leave you with a picture of my very tasteful Christmas cake, Nigella is shitting herself!!!

Monday 20 December 2010

Things I have to do before Christmas

Yes I know I'm a last minute Lil, don't give out to me, I am middle aged, tired and in need of a wife. In no particular order I have to

Find a new hiding place for the Christmas beer, it has been found and decimated by the 2 older teenagers and the Hot Boy who live here. I wish to save the remaining few tins for beer drinking visitors.

Go to the supermarket again, Glory be to God, I'm never out of supermarkets, I go in spend £100 a time on tins of Quality Street, DVDs, batteries and wine. Have I anything for tea? that'll be a no.

Wrap presents.

Oh wait up, I still need to buy presents.

Not get cross with The Beautiful Parents when they continue to uhm and ahr about whether or not they'll be joining me for Christmas, I fully appreciate that they are scared they'll get stranded on the M6 but I kinda need to know one way or the other. It's not beyond them to tell me they won't be coming and then show up as a nice wee surprise for me. I'm not sure my last remaining nerve would cope with that level of surprise or the second guessing of the possible surprise. My parents being here affects when the children see their dad, what I will be doing on Christmas Eve, Christmas night and Boxing day. It also affects how much more food I need to buy, what presents I can buy my nieces (as my parents can take home with them and I don't need to post them) and how tidy my house needs to be. I have no wife and no cleaner, there is just me. Even just typing this has made me tired. And grumpy.

Ice my Christmas cake, my beautiful home made, filled with brandy and good stuff Christmas cake. Not baked by me so it should be safe to eat, I get to decorate it though. I am currently uhm ing and ahr ing about tasteful decor or Christmas on crack, place your bets.

Turn my office back into a dining room if my parents come for Christmas - I know I've done the parents bit but I remembered too late. If they don't come I will just shut the door and we'll eat in the kitchen.

Replace light bulbs in my office/dining room. It is very dark after 3 in there.I did buy light bulbs on one of my many Quality Street buying trips. I just need to buy the right sort of light bulbs next time.

Post Christmas cards, after I've written them obviously.

Remove bag of ice from front doorstep, it was left over from the very upmarket drinks soiree on Saturday night. Nothing beats a bunch of schoolfriends getting together 1st night back from their repsective uni's is there?

Lose 2 stone so I can put it back on by New Years eve, I have a ferocious amount of Quality Street here tormenting me.

Find a takeaway that is open on Christmas day, no one wants to eat a traditional Christmas dinner, the only meat eaters don't like turkey and well okay then, no one wants to eat a dinner cooked from scratch by me.

Get the dishwasher fixed, it only works if you hold the button in, I'm not sure jamming it in with a cocktail stick is a long term (IE over the Christmas holidays) solution.

Fix the arial problem. Apparently we have no TV, I didn't notice, when you switch it on it reads no signal. I am extremely tempted just to leave it, I doubt there would be anything I'd miss.

This is in addition to the normal working, driving offspring places, heating up, laundry (of which there is a fierce amount due to Eldest Beautiful Daughter bringing all her washing and a fair amount of fellow students washing home with her), cleaning and other stuff I do every other week of the year.

Then on Christmas Eve I will go to church and get down on my knees and give heartfelt thanks for my life, because I am blessed, my life is wonderful. I know I moan here week in and week out about my life but genuinely deep down I know how incredibly fortunate I am. Deo Gratias.

I wouldn't trade places with anyone.

Wednesday 15 December 2010

Things that make your auntie cheerful

Yes, I know I'm old enough to know better but it just makes me laugh.

Tuesday 14 December 2010

Things I don't understand part eleventy squillion

In the Cath Kidston shop in Bicester today there were 2 security guards at the door. How nasty were they expecting middle aged woman deprived of retro floral household porn to get?

Feck, even last Tuesday this place only had 1 security guard.

Friday 10 December 2010


You know it's time to de friend your son on facebook when you read


"You ever kissed a boy?"



So, you have to ask, don't you?

"Did you really kiss a boy?"

"Yeah, it was a dare, I was drunk"

I'm going back to Mummy denial land, this time I'm keeping the duvet pulled over my head.

Thursday 9 December 2010

The Big Chill

I feel the cold, my default temperature setting is "a bit chilly", I blame it on being born in the summer. I like it hot. No sniggering at the back please. I can sunbathe in 45 degree heat, you will never hear me say I'm too warm. Never. It's a shame I live in a cold place, I am more suited to somewhere like Hades, climatically speaking.

Readers, my central heating has broken down. I have no heat and no hot water. I have no fires or other means of heating my house. There is a teeny tiny electric wall heater in my winter fridge, you may call it a conservatory? This means if I had a barometer it would read "Fecking Freezing"

This is my own personal doom. I am not good in the cold. Not good at all. I am tetchy, significantly more tetchy than normal. I am writing this in bed, attired in jammies, tracky bottoms, a rugby thermal top, a fleece, thermal socks and a cardigan awaiting someone who I will love for evermore coming to fix it. I am practising being a poor pensioner, I feel I've nailed it.

Please feel free to drop by and hug me to warm me up. Or to point and laugh at my attire, your choice.

Update 3pm

My boiler was indeed repaired and it stayed on for an hour, it's gone off again now. I will get another engineer after 6pm tomorrow to try and refix it. I am a very chilly auntie again.

Update 6pm

The company I pay stupid amounts of money to every month to fix these problems have called to reschedule the engineer due to sheer volume of central heating breakdowns. The first available slot is next Wednesday. They did apologize profusely and tell me I could buy electric heaters up to a limit of £50 and they would refund the money. They also offered to reimburse me if I found someone else to fix my boiler whilst at the same time telling me that they have taken on every local engineer they could find. As a last resort they have said I can check into a local hotel.

Not a very happy auntie this night.

Monday 6 December 2010

Oh Christmas Tree

I must warn you, if you are of a Bah Humbug disposition you may wish to avoid visiting for the next few weeks as there may be a whiff of the seasons around the posts. I am very keen on Christmas.

I'm not overly keen on the preparation though, due to my can't be arsed gene. I love all the decor, the food, the presents etc and I would love them even more if I didn't have to facilitate it. The Beautiful Children probably are because they don't. The exception to this is my Christmas tree, I love doing my tree.

On Sunday I have to put up the tree, The Beautiful Son has to get the tree down from the attic because I have watched Michael McIntyre and know that as a woman I'm not allowed in the loft.

The Beautiful Son and Beautiful Baby Daughter decide they want to help me. Now you think I'd be glad but I'm not. I am a bit possessive of my tree and yes I do know I keep saying my tree. It is mine, fully mine, I only let the others look at it because I'm kind.

I like my tree to look nice, this is why I don't want help. I have been decorating my own Christmas tree since I was 22 and that is a very long time ago, I put on Christmas music, light my Crabtree and Evelyn Noel candle and have a tasteful one colour theme tree. I do a good tree. The children have their own tree, it looks like Christmas on crack, it has every colour ever known and is done up like the tinkers dog. They can't be arsed with 2 trees this year, they just want the one, my one.

I relent, they can help, he is 15, she is 14, they're not little anymore, in fact he can now reach the top of the tree and save me standing on a chair. We have the lovely Christmas smelling candle, we have the lovely Christmas music. At the end we have a not quite as lovely as if I'd done it myself Christmas tree.

I was slightly hurt when he compared me to Stalin and she compared me to Monica from Friends.

Still, David looks cheerful in his Santa hat, doesn't he?

Friday 3 December 2010

Nature v Nurture

The Beautiful Son and his first girlfriend have split up. Eldest Beautiful Daughter read it on the book of face and told me. I told Beautiful Baby Daughter and explained that although he annoys the crap out of her, she was to make allowances and under no circumstances give him a hard time.

I asked him how he was and he actually said "These things happen, it just wasn't working" I was a nice kind Mummy and didn't laugh, it was a 6 month thing, that's fairly heavy duty at his age.

Readers, we were worn out being nice to him, I was fetching cups of coffee in bed for him, watching what he wanted on TV, ordering pizza in, trying really, really hard to wrap him up in a big blanket of love.

I shouldn't have bothered.

Eldest Beautiful Daughter read his Formspring (for the middle aged non facebookers amongst you it is a thing where you can ask him anything and you can remain anonymous)

On this Formspring there were several enquiries asking why he'd dumped her, heavy duty guilt about how miserable she is, lots of comments on the new leggy blonde thing who has been worshipping at the altar of Jack for several months and a few enquiries about his parentage. I can assure you I was married to his dad, I have the lawyers bill to prove it.

I was not happy.

Neither were his sisters.

So, this bold boy of mine, who had been brought up to respect, no, actually revere women has dumped a lovely wee girl, has had a replacement lined up, had us, the women in his life in flitters looking after him because we think he's been dumped and not cracked a light?

As his big sister says "We fail, he's turned into a bloke"

Tuesday 30 November 2010

Eleven reasons you should visit my country

Scotland is a beautiful, beautiful place.

The people are friendly and funny (well, most of us are. Some are a bit po faced, just avoid them, they're probably incomers)

The cities have amazing architecture, really good shops, Princes Square in Glasgow is so beautiful.There are masses of galleries/museums and suchlike, most of which are free.

I can tell you good places to go in Glasgow & Edinburgh, special hints and tips on hotels, bars, restaurants, clubs (who am I kidding it's been at least 2 decades since my booty was shook - I can tell you nice places to get cake though) that's never to be sniffed at, cake is very cheering.

We have lovely food and great restaurants. It's not all deep fried mars bars.

I can do good shop porn for you. In George St in Edinburgh there's a Space NK, Jigsaw, LK Bennett and a gorgeous jeweller called Lime Blue in an almost unbroken run. How good is that?

You are allowed to go round peoples houses on a Sunday afternoon in open house sale viewing. I always go to very posh places in the New Town and pretend I'm moving back. I love a good nosey round someones house. What? like I didn't sell 3 houses in Edinburgh and have nosey people coming round to look at my house? I'm entitled

A rugby match at Murrayfield with drinking after is a not too shabby way to spend an afternoon.

If there's rugby, there'll be kilts, men in kilts are so sexy, are you needing some kilt porn to entice you? May I present for your delectation... Chris Cusiter

You'd be disappointed if he didn't make an appearance, wouldn't you?

If you want to do outdoorsy type stuff, you can go walking, climbing, fishing, skiing, hitting a ball with a stick (I believe you Y chromosone people call it golf?) You can even do surfing (that might be a wee bit chilly)

We have beautiful beaches, shut up, we do so


Come visit, you'll love it

Happy St Andrews Day

Sunday 28 November 2010

Eleven things I'd like for Christmas

I love Christmas. I love it with a passion. I love it with childlike enthusiasm, I love the laying around in your jammies, eating and drinking and watching Love Actually and Elf on a loop. I love the happiness, the decorations, the smell of my Christmas candles.

And I love presents.

I am going to put false modesty aside, I am shit hot at buying presents for my loved ones. My offspring will mention something in passing and I will search for hours to get it. I will be on red alert watching the things people pick up and look longingly at and I will drive back to buy it. I will wrap it beautifully, I use ribbon and all sorts of things that cost me too much and aren't strictly necessary. This year I have a Shaker type wrapping thang going on, cotton ribbon in cream and red saying Merry Christmas and red tin hearts bearing cheery festive greetings to tie on.

I give good gift...snort snort, winky face ;)

Now, I am a selfish girl at heart. I love getting presents and my family are crap at them. My friends are exempt, they are good gift givers. Occasionally I have had a man on the go around the festivities and they have varied wildly in the gift giving stakes. The children are totally pants, if it's not for them their can't be arsed gene kicks in. My parents and sister just moan about how difficult to buy for I am and opt out completely. My mother hasn't bought me a present since the 80's and my sister palms off a candle on me. I am fussy about candles, my sister not so much, she buys any old lump of wax with a wick.

Total crap

This year I am thinking of posting a Christmas wish list on my Facebook and you know I will have to share it with you, in case any of my lovely bloggy chums drop big fat hints to the children or win the lottery.

Or both.

See, I told you I was selfish.

Je voudrais (sounds so much nicer, dontcha think?)

"One day" by David Nicholls. I want a book I can read from start to finish and lose myself in and I really love the idea behind this one.

Some very sexy nail varnish as I want the only bit of me that's not getting fatter by the second to look sleek and svelte and polished. Because we all know I'm not.

A bit of Billy, because watching the great BC with my great BC and hearing them weep with laughter is a pretty fabby way to spend a few hours. Even if people think I'm a bad Mummy for letting my beautiful children watch a sweary man. They live with a sweary mum, I think they'll cope.

Anything by Divine, they've taken over from Fruit and nut toblerones. I know, I couldn't believe it either, I'm a chocolate floozy

You can't have festive without the fizz I get overly excited at the thought of pink champagne, and if that makes me a cultural peasant I don't care, I like girly pink champagne.

My Christmas candle, it really, really smells like Christmas to me, I love it, love it, love it. I start using all of these things from December 1st. My house smells gorgeous.

Fitflop slippers
You know me and my fitflops but now I'm working from home, I really need slippers. They are now a workwear essential, to go with my workwear jammies.

Yes I know it's a grey cardie but it's an M and S grey cardie I feel that 15 grey cardigans is the exact number of grey cardies a middle aged woman of 44 should have. I only have 14, I'm calling middleagedwomanline, I am deprived.

And if we're getting silly and it is Christmas and I have been good...

And we continue in a flight of fancy mode...

How about this bit of Chanel porn for you

It would be rude and disrespectful not to have some Louboutin porn to go with your handbag porn, wouldn't it?

And Christmas wouldn't be Christmas without a little sparkle The black diamonds are just the cut of aunties jib.

Saturday 27 November 2010

Eleven people I'd like to be for a day

Don't get me wrong, my life is not too shabby but wouldn't it be interesting to just slip on someone else, just for one day.

I'd quite like to try on these lovely people for size...

Sharleen Spiteri

Carrie Bradshaw

Scarlett O'Hara

Brandon Flowers

The Prime Minister

Idina Sackville

Chris Paterson

Billy Connolly


Daphne Du Maurier

Debo Duchess of Devonshire

Your go...

Friday 26 November 2010

Eleven films I could watch over and over again

Much as I'd love to be sophisticated and cultured, I'm a bit mainstream in my film tastes.

Gregory's Girl - my very favourite movie of all time, it came out just as I was a teenager in a school in Glasgow, it was amazing seeing what my reality was on the big screen.

The English Patient - because Kristin Scott Thomas and Ralph Fiennes are just so in love.

Four Weddings and a Funeral - Hugh Grant, oh I so would

Braveheart - because I'm parochial, we all know that

Love Actually - because it makes me happy and I am a Christmas fanatic.

Sleepless in Seattle - oh the romance thaaang again, my name is auntiegwen and I am a mush junkie

Elf - who could not love Elf?

Cinema Paradiso - so so beautiful

Rocky Horror Picture Show - because I'm just a sweet transvestite (I'm not really)

Grease - more romance but less sickly sweet than some of the others

The Commitments - ooh it makes me laugh out loud, still, even now

Would you like to pop round your aunties and watch a movie? You can bring one or eleven of your own.

Thursday 25 November 2010

Eleven reasons to be extremely grateful

I have the 3 best children in the world, bar your own of course.

I am loved, boy am I loved. That's incredibly lucky.

I have amazing friends.

I am disgustingly healthy.

I have never known real hardship in my life.

I have freedom of choice (well, if I run it past the children first.)

I am not completely insolvent, more skint in style, well, not real style because I'm a bit peasanty.

I am generally quite happy and with the luxury of a blog, when I'm not, I do a rantie auntie and you lovely people all pop by and cheer me up.

I have a permanent job now, Glory be to God in the highest, it pays a lot more money than before, the colleagues I've met have gone out of their way to be helpful and I love my new boss. I keep thinking of her like she's my friend, because she's lovely. I am extremely grateful for my job.

The Beautiful Parents are only staying for 6 days and not 14, c'mon gimme a break, I love them but 14 days is a looooong time.

I am alive.

Tuesday 23 November 2010

Eleven things I should have done

Kept my braces on, settle yourself, on my teeth, have you any clue how much it's going to cost me to have them repaired?

Learned how to enjoy cooking. Oh I can do it, it just bores the bejaysus out of me.

Not had 3 children in 4 years, that may have contributed significantly to my tiredness levels. Which are considerable.

Taught my children to be regular functioning humans, they are as capable now as they were at 4. Yes, I know that is my fault.

Kept my house in Edinburgh and rented it out, it'd be worth shedloads now.

Learned to type properly and not be afeared of technology.

Got an iphone instead of my crackberry

Twitter, I keep thinking I should join in but I just can't be arsed.

Thought slightly more about how much I hate traffic and driving before I accepted a job that necessitated my driving across 5 counties.

Saved some money, not to the detriment of all enjoyment, just a wee bit, for a rainy day.

Had a slightly more planned approach to life, all right, any kind of a plan would be welcome.

Friday 19 November 2010

Eleven reasons I haven't posted for a week

I am a bad blogger, feel free to berate me, please have my eleven excuses. I have been missing in bloggy action this week because

I started a new job

I have to go and meet people at my new job

This meeting of people takes me to far far away (well, Chesterfield on Wednesday and yesterday long day visiting Gainsborough, Spalding and Boston and I'd never even been to Lincolnshire before yesterday)

I am having to do masses of driving (not really in my skill set but at least I have my own car back)

As I will be doing eleventy squillion miles per year, maybe I should accept the company car I have been offered? The thought of having to work out how much it will cost and the tax implications makes my brain switch off. I have the choice of an Astra or an Astra. The level of my decision making is "does it come in metallic purple?" please decide for me then if it all goes wrong I will blame you.

The meeting of people and the concentrating on the new things and the pretending to be both nice and clever is exhausting.

The children still need feeding and driving places.

The housework fairy is on strike

I am still middle aged and therefore extremely tired

My Beautiful Son and his not as calm as it's been life

And I have been busy with a really lovely and exciting secret thing and as it's in it's early stages I will keep it under wraps a bit longer.

Friday 12 November 2010

Eleven things I would really like to say

This post contains writing of a rantie auntie nature. There is a lot of swearing in it, even for me. You've been warned.

PS - if you're new here, I am a self confessed passive aggressive with a bit of a martyr complex, I think things, seethe about things and then eventually blog about them. This post is a classic example. There is a whiff of self pity and a dose of the "Poor me's" about it too.

At your own risk.

To the repair garage when they phoned me yesterday
Give me back my fecking car.

I am extremely cross that you have had my car for 10 days now and it's only today you're telling me you're still waiting for paint. The missing part of the paintwork is less than the size of a 10p piece. I hate the Fiesta you have given me, with a passion, I am used to a high car, this is so low, it feels like my arse is on the floor. I start my new job on Monday and I will be doing lots of driving as I have a whole region to cover, I want to do it in my own car. Give me my car back now, you incompetent bunch of "finding wee jobs to do because it's an insurance claim" bastards.

To the insurance company

Would you give yourself peace

Phone calls, claim forms, drawing diagrams, questions that I can't answer - I have no idea how wide the road was, am I meant to go measure it? etc

To my beautiful parents
No, for the love of God, not two weeks

I love you, I do. I think we will all love each other a lot less if you come stay with me for 2 weeks at Christmas. I will have just started my new job and have limited holidays I can take. I am supposed to be working from home, this will be difficult when I have a house full of people. You will need driving around, entertaining and feeding, none of which are in my skill set. I wish to spend what time I have off in my jammies, mainlining Baileys and fruit and nut toblerones. Interspersed with naps. I do not want to be judged on how clean my house is (it won't be), how I only cook 1 meal a fortnight from scratch (I know I'm crap) and I really don't want my tee total mother looking at me like I'm on a slippery slope when I have a 2nd glass of wine with my Christmas dinner (I will need it)

To The Tax Office
Aw fur fucks sake, gimme a break

I understand that it is indeed, again, my fault, that I failed to enclose 1 sheet of my foreign tax return. Again, mea culpa. I am thinking of getting it tattooed on me. The missing sheet, as you so kindly pointed out, was one I didn't need to fill in anyway. So if I didn't need it and it makes no difference, could you just not have printed off one and stuck it in? Would that not have been quicker and kinder, for both of us?

To My Beautiful Eldest Daughter
Stop moaning about having no money and get a job

I understand that this week you have been in placement. I completely empathise that it is tiring to do a full day without a wee nap. I also note that this is the first full week you've put in for 2 years thanks to your study periods in your last 2 years at school. Most of us do this week in and week out. Without complaint (well, much complaint) However, you knew you needed a part time job over the summer holidays and in term time. You have known this for at least 6 months. You have not applied yourself to finding employment. If you showed the same level of enthusiasm as you do to new shoes or partaying, you'd be employed. I am keeping my end of the bargain by driving you back and forth to uni, doing your laundry and ironing and giving you £60 a week to live on so play fair.

To The Beautiful Son

Said through a megaphone. Right in your ear. I have to wake up at 6am to get you up for your paper round. 6am rises make me cranky. More cranky than usual. Personally, I don't need to wake up till 7.30am, on a Saturday I don't have to get up at all. When I get up at 6, I can't get back to sleep. This also makes me cranky. Is there a theme emerging? Set an alarm on one of the many electrical appliances I have provided for your enjoyment, your phone, your telly, your xbox or your ipod. Take your pick.

To my Beautiful Baby Daughter
Because I fecking well said so

I realise that you are 14 and full of fizzing hormones. I understand that you are trying to find your place within school, within your peer group and even within your family. I know you hate your life at present, you are 14, it comes with the spots. Please, for the love of God, do not question every single thing I ask you to do. I have one nerve left and you are tapdancing all over it. You will have to live with me for another 5 years, if you keep this level of confrontation up it will be the most miserable 5 years of my/your/our lives. And I am counting my chronically awful teenage years in that. And mine were fucking miserable.

To my solicitor
Stop with the letters

I understand you gave me an estimate of costs. I understand that we may go over it because my ex and I cannot agree on a financial settlement. But every time you write to me or call me or email me it costs me money. Please don't write to tell me we're still within the estimate or nearly over it.

To the exmrauntiegwens solicitor
Get a grip

Please remember I am a real person, with feelings, no matter what you have heard to the contrary. Please also try and inject a dose of reality into your propositions, the bandying of letters back and forth costs me (and him) money, money I definitely don't have.
When I read that "Mrs auntiegwen and her family frequently holiday at the property in Turkey and our client would be happy for them to purchase his share" I have to resist the urge to hoot with derisory laughter. Are you suggesting I ask The Beautiful Son for some of his paper round or ask Beautiful Baby Daughter to empty her piggy bank? My mortgage in England is, even with my new improved salary, ELEVEN times my annual salary, that's right, eleven. Now what bank is going to lend me thirteen times my salary to buy him out of the holiday home as well? The Bank of Make Believe? The Fairy Godmother of Divorcees Bank? The Bank of Stupid?

To the ex mrauntiegwen
You got me

This could be a whole post in itself. I don't want you to come to my house to see the children on Sunday, that day will be the day of our first date 25 years on. I don't want you there. I can barely bring myself to be civil to you.

I knew when we started negotiating money we wouldn't agree. It is extremely fair of you to give me all the equity in the mortgaged to the hilt house in England. It is also extremely generous of you to give me 60% of the house in Turkey, the one we have been trying and failing for the last 4 years to sell. I wish I had stuck to being "risk averse" as you called me and stopped myself becoming "asset rich, cash poor" but with you having the degree in Financial Services and all those years working in a bank, I took your financial advice.

I understand that legally once your children finish the school term that they are 18 your financial obligation ends.

Legally, not morally.

I understand that legally when your son turns 18 you can stop paying for him.

When that happens, I will be unable to pay the mortgage, because it is ELEVEN times my annual salary. I cannot do that on my own, if I live with someone or remarry before October 2015 the house will have to be sold anyway.

That's fine because as there is only 1 night in the week (Wednesday) that I do not have to drive and collect one of the children from an activity and as they only spend 2 Saturdays a month with you, it's extremely unlikely I would be able to meet and develop a meaningful relationship with anyone anyway. And on those 2 Saturdays a month, I most always have the elder of the children home from uni plus Hot Boy.

What this all means is your younger daughter, the one who is the most vulnerable and volatile of all, will have to move house in the first year of her A levels. I will be unable to afford another property in this area so she will have to leave here, where she has lived since she was 3 and move away from her friends. And that will be devastating for her.

Legally you can do this, you will give me the 10% of your salary the CSA says is fair and you have offered £150 per month spousal maintenance. But that will not mean she can stay in her home till she finishes her A levels. Legal but not moral.

You can explain it to her.

To God
Are you kidding me?

Whatever I did in my last life it must have been bad. I apologize unreservedly for the shit I must have been. Mea fucking culpa.

Monday 8 November 2010

11 Decisions I really didn't think through properly

A natural born decision maker I am not. As much as I'd love to be one of those people with a plan, I'm really not. I know I'd like to be planning for my future and should know where I'll be in 5 years time but I'd lay money on it, in 5 years time I'll be here. Just bumbling along and reacting to events rather than planning and following through. It seems like my whole life I have done things on a whim or let others decide for me. Sometimes it's been okay and I've got lucky and other times it's been stupid.

So bright, so rebellious, so couldn't be arsed. It would be the sweetest irony for my teachers, if they could have seen me in my classroom, 20 odd years later dealing with the new updated 21st century version of me. I could not wait to leave and get into the real world and it was a crap decision. I should have stayed on and studied and went to uni, like they told me. Instead I left and worked as a telephonist in a solicitors office. Stupid.

Nursing College
Never ever had a notion of being a nurse but my boyfriend, (at the time), had a lovely sister who was a nurse. It sounded interesting and she encouraged me heavily. So she got me the forms and I went for the interview and they took me. None of my family thought I'd be any good as squeamish is my middle name but I remember thinking I'll get through this and I'll qualify. I was actually a really good nurse, I did it for 15 years and I found I was good at looking after people, it was my first experience of being caring. Definitely got lucky on that decision.

Moving to Edinburgh
I was 21 and the ex mrauntiegwen (who was my boyfriend then) got 10 days notice that the bank he worked for were moving him to Edinburgh. In those days you signed a contract saying you'd work anywhere in the country for them, my mate The Edge ended up in Orkney, which may not have been his first choice of locations when he was in his 20's. Did I stop and think "Do I want to leave Glasgow and my family and friends, my job, my life?" nope, I didn't, just looked for a job in Edinburgh and went 7 weeks after he did. Fortunately I loved Edinburgh, made friends, bought 3 houses (not all at once), had 3 children and lived there for 13 years. Another got lucky.

Getting married
I was 3 weeks shy of being 22, what was I thinking? Actually I wasn't, at all. We'd been together 3 years, I'd moved through to Edinburgh, we bought a flat, we got married. Even if someone had questioned my decision, would I have listened? Nope, probably not. Would I want my daughters to get married at that age? Hell to the no. Was that a stupid or got lucky? Jury's still out.

Having children
I had children because I loved babies. I had no experience of children at all, I knew nothing about bringing up children. I adored being at home with them and squishing them and us all being snuggly together, so I kept on having them. I didn't even think that it might be less enjoyable when they stopped being babies and turned into people with their own opinions and likes and dislikes. Also, I didn't really think through the practicalities of having 3 children in 4 an a half years or the expense of it, especially now with 3 teenagers. But of all the non decisions I've made, easily my best - being their Mummy has been the best bit of my life. A big huge got lucky

Moving to England
The ex mrauntiegwen got offered a job in not the most exciting place in England. He decided it was the right one for him. That decision changed everything. My children had to leave behind their stable world and start again in a place where we had never been and we knew no one. The big selling point was that he wouldn't have to do any business travel, he'd be home at teatime every day. That was something I found very handy as previous to that I was often on my own Mon to Fri with 3 kids all under 7, this had been going on for about 5 years then. There were very few weeks when he wasn't away at least 1 or 2 nights a week. He lasted 18 months there and the job he then took, gave him a 3 hour daily commute and at least 2 nights per week away again, missing all the taking to schools and most teatimes and bath times. Do you think that was a hint? I never wanted to leave Edinburgh and I have no idea why I felt I wasn't an equal partner in that decision. I have no idea why I didn't refuse to leave. That was my most stupid decision of my life. Also financially stupid, if I'd stayed at home all my children would have their tuition fees paid, I have 3 children, we might be talking about 70 grand's worth of tuition. SO VERY FECKIN STUPID in capitals for emphasis.

Another non decision, when BBD started playgroup here in England, I volunteered both there and at school to help the children settle. Playgroup asked me to cover for sick leave, I did, they liked me and so did the kids. They created a job for me, so I knew it was less money than nursing but it was school hours and term time only. I had no childcare to pay for and it seemed like a good idea. I went to college in the evening and did an NVQ3 in childcare, I spend loads of time helping others on the course and the tutor asked me if I'd be interested in doing the adult teacher training as they were very short of teachers. Another non decision, go with the flow type of thing. So I re trained as a teacher of adults, had a 2 year stint in a high school and then into the third sector. Just about to start my new job as the Education and Training Officer for the East Midlands, which is a big area for a big charity. Definitely another got lucky.

Going blonde
Now you know that was stupid

Eating chocolate again
4 years ago I gave up chocolate and started running. I weighed 7 and a half stone and was a size 6. I am now into double figures again STUPID STUPID STUPID

My finances
There is no cohesion nor a hint of planning. I should have ISA's and Tessa's and all other girls names money in the bank. I am forty feckin four and I am still living month to month. I know people who have 50 grand in savings. I'm like Carrie except rather than having 50 pairs of fancy shoes I have grey cardigans. My name is auntiegwen and I am addicted to buying cardigans. How boring can I be? and stupid.

Working from home
My new job is home based. How in the name of all that's holy did I think that I would be able to work from home? Me Queen of procrastination? addicted to her jammies and her bed? at home when I'm not out training? will I actually get on and do stuff when I have eleventy million things at home to distract me? And I can only imagine how professional I'll sound to people on the phone when they are trying to speak against the 10 decibel noise of the Beautiful Children fighting about every single feckin thing. Today I am meant to be turning my dining room into an office, again my procrastination beautifully illustrated by my messing around on the internets. Again, stupid.

So due to my passivity I have meandered through making lots of stupid decisions/non decisions. I have no excuse now, I am old enough to know better. Here's hoping the 2nd half of my life is more thought through.

Friday 5 November 2010

Eleven things I'd like to have a go at

They're running a class in my local high school on Tuesday evenings, apparently it's an exercise that feels like a party. I definitely some of that. I wonder if there will be flirting and drinking too? Anyone want to come with me?

You go in a big inflatable ball and roll down a hill, a bit like being a human hamster. It looks gas fun, The Beautiful Children quite fancy it as well.

I'm gutted that I've never done any music festivals, I feel I'm letting myself down. I love live music, I love being with happy likeminded people but I'm middle aged and don't like mud so I've never done one. I really must have a go before I'm too old.

Yoga and/or Pilates
I still want to go that Pilates in France place. All the people I know who do yoga or pilates are all serene and thin and bendy. I'd quite like to be serene and thin and bendy. As opposed to irritable, chubby and not bendy.

Snowboarding and/or skiing
All my children can ski and board. I could have bought a new car or a fitted kitchen with the money I have spent on my offsprings Alpine pursuits. But I've never had a go, all together now... poor poor auntie.

Building/renovating a House
God, wouldn't that be amazing? To create your own home? To have exactly what you want where you want it? The flaw in this plan is that I have zero DIY skills and I live in a house where if something goes wrong I get a teenage boy to fix it or I adapt around it. I have none of the 4 recessed lighting thingies that work in my kitchen and if the 1 light above the kitchen table goes I will need to buy a lamp. Pitiful isn't it?

Being stylishly dressed and accesorised
Not gonna happen is it? I just don't have the imagination for it. I suspect my can't be arsed gene doesn't help.

A pyschology degree
I know, for nearly 4 years I've been bumping my gums that I'd love to do one. Nothing is stopping me except my can't be arsed gene. D'ya think I could get it removed on the NHS?

A gap year
Is this not the middle of my life? do I not deserve a wee rest from the giddy and exciting whirl of kids, work, laundry, heating up stuff and tidying away stuff that is my very rock n roll existence? My friend Neil aka The Edge went travelling years ago and wrote about his adventures and I always hope I'll be able to do that someday too. Obviously not as well as The Edge did, as he pays careful attention to grammar and is always funny, he gets very cross with my spelling, punctuation and grammar. Incidentally, my friend Neil aka The Edge is not in U2, his band is way cooler and currently wowing the good people of central Scotland with their "No sleep till Horlicks" tour.

I am truly, truly dreadful but it's a talent I dearly wish I possesed. Is it possible to teach anyone, no matter how bad, to sing? Scratch that, you know my can't be arsed gene would be working overtime.

David Tennant

Monday 1 November 2010


After spending a lovely 10 days at The Beautiful House I have been home for 6 days and I still haven't properly unpacked, my house is a tip and I'm freezing and knackered. So rather than dwell upon the negatives I will focus on the good stuff, see how hard your auntie works at being a happy wee scone?

Please have 11 things (going for 11 posts containing 11 things as it's November and I forgot to do my 10 posts in October) that made your auntie happy in the last week.

Sitting in the sunshine reading and enjoying the moment as I knew I was flying back to the UK and I was fairly sure it was the last sit in the sun moment of my year. The photo is of the view from my terrace. I saw this wooden heart and I had to buy it and hang it there. It really doesn't get much better than this for me.

The ex mr auntiegwen collecting me from the airport and bringing Eldest Beautiful Daughter with him. I have never spent 10 days apart from her before so he made a detour to collect her so I could see her as soon as possible.

I am brown as brown can be, this pleases me muchly. I can't do pale and interesting I just look like death warmed up.

Now that The Beautiful Son is a paperboy, the newsagent has agreed that I can have my Sunday Times delivered. They wouldn't do it before as I only wanted 1 paper per week. So on Sunday I had the unbeknown bliss of reading my Sunday Times in bed, usually I have to get up, get dressed and go to Sainsbury's to buy it. It was utterly heavenly to potter downstairs, collect paper and coffee and straight back to bed. I agree, very easily pleased.

02 sent me a bar of chocolate as a treat. How good is that? It was so lovely, yummy chocolate aptly named Divine, I would even go as far to say it was better than a fruit and nut toblerone.

Hot Boy made dinner for us, no one ever does that.

I did my tax return. I handed it on on Thursday 28th October, 3 days before the deadline. Oh yes, effieciency becomes me, it goes with my grey hair.

Texting my lovely mate on Tuesday night. I am such a bad friend. I never text him but when we do text/speak/spend time together I realise how much I heart him. Also he gets bonus points for keeping in touch with me and for never moaning about how shamefully I neglect him.

I remembered to send my niece's birthday card on time. I also bought her present when I was on holiday and gave it to my mum to take back to Glasmental with her. I am a smug auntie and my sister has nada to complain about till I forget the next niece's birthday in June.

I found out that my first day at my new job is being spent at a hotel, meet at 10.30 am for coffee and then a working lunch. I get overexcited about stuff like that. I know I'm sad but I have always worked in the public sector so classrooms or wards are where I usually spend my first day.

I am going to London for work early December, I heart London, anyone want to come play with auntiegwen?

Wednesday 27 October 2010

Back to reality

Hot Boy - "Welcome home Wendy, did you have a good holiday?"

auntiegwen - "Yep thanks, you okay?"

Hot Boy - " I am but I've just peed on my hands" (in a disconcerted voice)

auntiegwen - " Scuse me?" (in a I can't believe I'm hearing this tone)

Hot Boy - "I was having a pee, seen a hair on the end of my knob, tried to take it off, peed on my hand, not happy"

auntiegwen - " Mase, it's only taken you about 20 seconds to give me too much information, I did miss you."

Wednesday 20 October 2010

Another Birthday Blog

It's a scary thought that my youngest child is 14 today. Growing up, becoming less of a child and more of a teenager yet she is and always will be my baby.

The most fiery of all my children, the one with determination and zeal, sometimes means life is less laid back with her in it but it's never ever boring. She just fizzes with energy, talks non stop from morning to night and is always active. She always has a real passion and enthusiasm for things, always has a project on the go and gives it her all.

She is so loving and open to love, the kindest of souls, always looking out to help her friends and taking their worries away. She makes me so proud.

I always say when she sleeps I can still see the baby version of her. I found this photo a few weeks ago and it made me shed a few tears, she is edible in this. I used to go and look at her asleep and my heart would melt. And it still does, my wee tootsy moppet, the last baby of mine, the joy of my heart. Lucy Abigail, mo chridhe, tha gaol agam ort.

Friday 15 October 2010

How remiss of me

Usually every Ocotber I do 10 posts about 10 things, that's as themed and as co-ordinated this blog gets. I'm a very busy woman you know, what with getting old and all.

I forgot.

Mea culpa, another reason why I'm not a blogger that gets offered all the free stuff. There is no cohesion to this blog, the spelling's a bit dodgy and don't even get me started on syntax.

Any hoo, I'm sorry I'm away to The Beautiful House today, the weather there is a bit hit and miss, so pray for some sunshine for me, when I get back I'll maybe make November a bit more interesting.

I will share with you some of my google searches as this week they were quite chuckle worthy.

when did auntie gwen die

erm, I thought I was still alive, OMG, is this Hell?

Someone has to look after my boys

And you thought I could? Have you read my blog? Seen what I've done to my own kids?

stockings middle aged mummy

Not usually, I live in my jammies.

cant have sex a week before fixing coil

I'll take your word for it, no arguments from me.

photos of a woman dribbling on herself

I think not, drool is so very unattractive on a woman.

Tuesday 12 October 2010

Things I have to do before Friday

I know, I know I'm a last minute Lil, I drive myself insane with it but I seem to only be able to get my arse into gear when faced with the prospect of things going properly scarily wrong.

This is what I have got to do before Friday at 11 am, this is in addition to normal living, working, driving children places, cleaning and all the rest of the things that make up my very rock n roll existence.

Drive into town and pay cheques into bank (they have closed my local branch) because they are utter bar stewards and they have no concept of customer service.
Transfer money so I am not stupidly overdrawn when they take EBD's accommodation money out on Friday. I shall refrain from mentioning that it is the most expensive locker ever as she seems to be spending 3 nights a week there maximum. The rest of the time I am driving to fetch her home and then driving her back again, not to mention feeding her, doing her laundry and her ironing, she causes me far more work and costs me far more money than she did when she lived here.

Pack for TBS and BBD and I to go to the villa, this is the first time I have been on holiday without EBD as she has no half term break, fortunately she hasn't complained more than once every 10 minutes about the unfairness of it all. Childline have now blocked her number though.
Buy 2 bikini's for BBD, and swimming shorts for TBS, this is proving quite a task, everywhere is selling winter stuff.
Buy more adaptor plugs, The Beautiful Parents arrived at the villa yesterday and found all the plugs gone. I despair, you'd think all these little extra touches would be appreciated rather than nicked.
Buy eleventy squillion birthday presents and a cake and pack them in a suitcase and take them to the other side of the world so BBD can't moan about how crap it is to have a birthday when on holiday.

Be a better Mummy, I am apparently not enthusiastic enough in my parenting with my youngest. She feels very hard done by with her 3rd time round experience. I have been found wanting in the following areas...

Not being enthusiastic about making a paper mache volcano for year 9 Geography. In my defense I was not in the slightest bit enthusiastic with either of the older 2's volcanoes either.
Not asking enough questions on open day for the school she will transfer to next September. This is the school I was a teacher at and her older 2 siblings attended. I don't need to ask that many questions, I know the answers already.
Not letting her opt out of a language GCSE so she can do an uncredited beauty course instead in the vocational studies option. Nail painting, for her, would be a hobby, she is not in the slightest bit interested in it as a career and I am loathe to let the brightest of my children waste 3 lessons per week for 2 years on it. It also says that a language GCSE is something some universities insist on. When the teacher in charge sells it to parents as " a fun subject to balance out all the other more dry academic lessons" it does not sell itself to me, a teacher Mummy.
Being a moany Mummy about the state of her bedroom. It looks like Beirut on a bad day or like H and M at 4pm on a Saturday. I despair, it's horrific and I wish I was too bohemian to care but it annoys the bejaysus out of me.
I think that's all that's wrong with my Mummying but it seems to be enough to keep her in a perpetual state of sulkiness with frequent outbreaks of cross shoutiness. It's turned my almost omnipresent Pollyanna ish ness to gin.

I need to write and set post for my Beautiful Baby Daughters birthday because I love her, even though we have only had 8 nice words in a week, I love her with a visceral and ferocious love. I am trying to love the pricklyness away, some days I succeed.

I need to allocate all my families at work to someone else and do a "I'm on holiday, so I really don't care but I know I'll pay for it when I get back" default message. I need to resign so I can start my new job mid November.

I need to do my tax return, employed, self employed and foreign. I hate my tax return and because of the villa I rent out it is classed as foreign income so I need a paper return due October 31st. I hate this, it always hangs over me when I go away for half term. I only earn fourpence and a caramel but it takes fekin ages and I need to do big sums and me no likey.

And then I get to go to my beautiful house for 10 days, where the sun and pink o'clock (rose wine and a bowl of nuts fresh from the farmers market on my lovely terrace watching the sun go down over Father mountain) make me feel like I can stop and relax and actually enjoy doing nothing for a while.

And that will give me the energy to keep going for another little while.

Wednesday 6 October 2010

My Day Off

My day started at 6.20am where I got up to ensure The Beautiful Son got up for his paper round. I had to ensure until 6.35am.

I then put a load of laundry in the machine and made coffee and toast.

Next was a nice bit, I had the said coffee and toast back in bed reading horoscopes on the internet, yep still doing that.

I then got Beautiful Baby Daughter up for school. She proffers a trip permission slip and informs me that she has to hand the slip and cheque in that very morning. I spent the next 15 minutes in cross shouty stressville whilst looking for a chequebook. Upon finding it I pledged £34 towards her future educational and career prospects, of course The Clothes Show is educational.

I then emptied the dishwasher, tidied the kitchen, uhmed and arred for a bit about putting the washing outside ( I'm not going to tell you if I did, you'll be wondering all day now, I like to keep you on the edge of your seat with my domestic dramas)

I got showered and dressed and off to my solicitor, where we draft a letter to the ex mr auntiegwens solicitor about the financial end of our marriage. It's not the most pleasant way I ever spend £160 in an hour. And there is never any cake there, I wish she'd give me cake, just once, to make the experience a bit more pleasant. On the plus side, that was the first visit where I didn't cry.

I drive home, buy petrol and forget to buy the polo mints for my car, I don't feed them to the car but I like to have them there, I ignore the funny screechy noise which appears from time to time.

I spent the next 2 hours going over a presentation I am due to give at 2.45pm. I have declined BBD offer of wee twirly bits and animation to make my powerpoint less boring, to her chagrin. I pop my memory stick into the main computer to print off copies of said powerpoint to find a leftover piece of webcam jammed into one slot and find the other slot broken also.

I got a bit stressy at this point.

I then have to drive 30 miles to a conference centre relying on my sat nav, which refuses to accept that I am in fact in my driveway and not at the destination of the last place I used it for. I am now late and I have to drive like a granny as I have 3 points now.

I arrive, do presentation and am very nervous. I make a complete arse of myself and spend the next hour making sure they know I'm an arse and have no doubt about that. I waffle on and find the questions very hard. My voice is all quavery but I don't cry.

I drive home berating myself for being a tit.

I get home and find I have to visit the supermarket urgently as the house appears to have been robbed of all food, fortunately it was eaten by my 2 children and their eleventy hundred friends.

After the supermarket I heat up food and then drive BBD to Girls brigade, it is now 7pm.

I spend the next 2 hours sorting out the house and then at 9pm I go back and collect BBD from Girls Brigade.

Then I got to go to bed.

And that folks was the story of my day off.

Sunday 3 October 2010

In a safe place

I could have scribed another rantie auntie type post, as time marches on I find myself more and more grumpy, I am perfecting my middle aged status to Olympic standard.

I could have given you more on Hot Boy as I saw him yesterday and there were a few comedy gems, not including his attire of shocking pink and I mean PINK skinny jeans. Gifted to him by Nicki, the keyboard player in his band. She felt they were a bit out there for her, a female girl. Of course, if an outfit is too showstopping, who else would you give it to?

I could tell you all about how my office is moving and as well as my normal work we had to pack up an 8 roomed office with 18 years worth of crap and condense everything to fit in a 2 room office. The wee boys the removal firm sent were the most gormless looking pair you've ever clapped eyes on. I wanted to fetch my son to see them and hiss in a passive aggressive whisper - "This is what will happen if you don't get your A levels"

Instead I will tell you the sorry tale of how the auntie got caught speeding. I am a bad auntie, a fast auntie, an now a quite a bit poorer auntie. I have no excuses I should obey the rules and I shall not whine about getting caught and paying the money. It is entirely my own fault and I deserve everything I get.

In my house no one except me can find anything, my ovaries appear to contain a locating device, I am good at finding things, I get plenty practice. I wasn't too concerned about finding the paper part of my driving licence. I thought it would be in one of my safe places. I actually say "I will put this in a safe place", Michael McIntyre's man drawer has nothing on me. I have a house full of safe places.

So I look in the folder that contains the birth certificates and my PIN for the National Board for Nursing (it's always been kept there, probably since I left home for the first time and my only official documentation was my birth certificate and my pin.)

Then I look in my travel folder with the passports as you need both parts to hire a car abroad. I have never driven abroad and have no notion to. But I like to think of myself as a well prepared, windswept and interesting type traveller.

I look in my bedside drawer and the spare bedside drawer where I had a lovely time reading little letters that BBD had sent me and smiling through tears at the baby spellings and the sweetness of it all. Which took the edge of her struntieness this week, she has been very strunty. I also found a card from the ex mrauntiegwen telling me how much he loved me and thanking me for 20 years together and asking for another 40. We'll gloss over that, I think it's best.

I emptied the wicker hamper that was a corporate Christmas goodie from Fortnum and Mason that I use as a coffee table and a receptacle of things I think I might need at some unspecified in the future. I have no idea why I have kept 9 Argos catalogues and old pay slips from 2002, I also have no idea why there was a carrier bag containing all the Christmas cards I received in 2007.

I looked in every drawer in the Welsh dresser in the dining room unearthing some cards from my 40th birthday and 6 old diaries. My God, I did a lot of going to school things with my 3 children, it seemed like every week I was there for a family assembly, a sports day or a parents meeting. No wonder I only worked part time, I wouldn't have been able to fit it in.

Reader, I will not take you on a full looking and finding tour of my safe places in this house, there are many. I have kept a lot of crap over the 10 years I've lived here. Some of it was lovely to see again, other's just bemusing as to why I hadn't got rid of it at the time. I eventually gave up and ordered a new one as per my dear friend Note Bene's suggestion on the book of face.

My ovaries which were formerly top notch locating devices are now a little tired and middle aged. They have caught up with the rest of me.

Monday 27 September 2010


EBD has survived her freshers week. It's been strange without her but also weird because without her we've had no Hot Boy. Back they both came this weekend and made up for it.

Hot Boy continues to be my main form of entertainment, he has no capacity AT ALL for self moderation, he watches not a word that comes out of his mouth. He seems to forget I am his girlfriends mum and a very happy inhabitant of Mummy Denial Land. On Saturday, I am, as is my wont, prone on the sofa with a good book in our conservatory. Himself and EBD joined me and in one conversation he managed to...

ask me if I'd been to Cyberdog in Camden and seen the butt plugs for sale. And before you ask, strangely enough, no I haven't, they don't sell cake there so I don't visit.

tell me he was buying his mum some KY for Christmas, apparently you can be a bit dry down there at her age, only in her early 50's his mum is, although I suspect he's aged her quite a bit.

ask EBD to reassure me that although he can't fill out his man thong, she still has nothing to complain about. That managed to age me a fair bit too.

On Sunday he came with us as we drove EBD back to uni, about 20 minutes into the journey she texted him to remind him to watch what he was telling me. Too late, by this point in the journey we'd already covered how he'd be raped if he ever went to prison because he's so pretty, advised my son to be a dentist so he could look down girls tops or a gynaecologist so he could ...

At this point, my beautiful son, the one who's had all my maternal love and care lavished upon him. The one who's been brought up to respect women, nay almost to idealise them, says in response to the gynaecology career idea

"Eurggh, no thanks, manky fannies all day long"

Anyone want to adopt them? No? Sure I can't tempt you?

Wednesday 22 September 2010

Rantie auntie's top 3 of the week

You knew it had to come didn't you? I was ridiculously upbeat with all the wee funnies in the last post so for every yin there is a yang, every action a reaction, the thick seam of dichotomy running through the very core of me means you must have some rantie auntie. Read on McDuff

This week...

3 things that have made your auntie say " For the love of God" if you're of a nervous disposition or "Aw fur fucks sake" if you're not.

Both are in a very exasperated middle aged Scottish way though.

Jamie Oliver called his son Buddy Bear.

A man called Keith Mcdonald has 10 children by 10 different women, according to The Sunday Times this will cost the tax payer £1.5 billion by the time the children reach 18 as this unemployed Casanova impregnates girls/women who are reliant on benefits. He is not the bonniest of poppets but apparently is charming, especially on buses where he's met more than a few of his children's mothers. He doesn't have any contact with any of his children and pays £5 per week out of his benefits towards the upkeep of them. What a guy.

I know I'm sounding more than a little DAILY HEILISH but c'moan... (I would have linked to the Sunday Times article I read but it's paywalled and I'm a poor auntie) Please note since the Daily Mail article of July last year you can click on, he is now longer with Claire and now is expecting a baby with a Sarah who he is no longer with and a Danielle who he is, but she's only been pregnant a month so...

I went to buy new trainers to stop the rest of my toenails turning black and falling off. Apparently you can't just buy trainers, you have to have your gait analysed. For the unwary amongst you, this is what happens...

You put trainers on, the wee beardy boy checks where your toes are like the Start Rite lady did when you were 5, you get on the treadmill, you run - it's filmed, wee beardy boy tells you how wonky you run apparently I very badly overpronate on my left and I run on my toes so all the fancy stuff they put in the heels to stop you overpronate isn't worth a curdy to me.
I tried on 6 pairs.
It took an hour.
I was wearing a maxi dress.
My trainers cost £105, I'm a middle aged Glaswegian Mammy not feckin Usain Bolt.

Sunday 19 September 2010

auntiegwen's top laughs of the week

This week has been a bit of a roller coaster emotionally with the departure of Eldest Beautiful Daughter so any little light relief has been greatly welcomed. As you know I live in a house full of comedians, this is the only thing that stops me running away. So, in no particular order the things that made me chuckle are

The Beautiful Son

As EBD has been at home sans work for 3 months she had taken over loads of the housework. On being told he would have to help out with the cleaning as EBD has gone, the bold boy has got himself a paper round. To pay for a cleaner. I kid you not.

Hot Boy

After a slight disagreement with EBD, she smacked him one, playfully. He came in to me and complained about her behaviour. He wanted me to make her write an apology to his future wife explaining why they wouldn't be able to have children. He went on to clarify that it was his favourite testicle that she'd hurt. The one that hangs lower than the other, apparently that's the good one. Who knew you could have a favourite?

Also, I do want to tell you about his cure for the glums but this is a family blog and it might upset you. Hot Boy is a massive giver of too much information.

Beautiful Baby Daughter

Sobbed her heart out all the way home from dropping EBD off. When we arrived home she went and lay on EBD's bed. 10 minutes later she appeared in the lounge wearing EBD's coat and her black patent leather shoe boots. Having full and unrestricted access to all EBD's clothes she can't take to uni (tiny wardrobes) is a great cure for BBD's glums. Cheered her right up.

Eldest Beautiful Daughter

Her facebook status at 3.30am today read...

the walls are so thin in this flat I can hear the guy upstairs chucking up. lovely.

Get used to it, sweetie, I'm sure it will be a recurring theme.

The ex mr auntiegwen

Offered the daughters chewing gum in his car yesterday. Sore point as I don't allow it and also that BBD was caught chewing it at school (also not allowed) and got a detention. Even though I pointed all this out, the gum was still proffered with a cheeky grin.

Which very quickly disappeared when I took it from his hands and threw it out his car window.

Tuesday 14 September 2010

To My Eldest Beautiful Daughter

The day I knew was on it's way is almost here. The day that you, my Eldest Beautiful Daughter, will leave home. For 18 years I've had the honour and the privilege to be your Mummy. I've marvelled at you all the way from the first moment I held you in my arms to now when I never want to let you go. You have been, are now and always will be the delight of my heart...mo chridhe.

You have taught me so much and so well. Thanks to you I know the meaning of unconditional love, patience, flexibility, and pride. I will never love anyone in the way I love you and your siblings. You 3 and I are enmeshed and wrapped together with a love that is the real deal, the big love, Tan 90 squared.

And I will miss seeing you every day with an ache that is soul deep. To not see you and touch you and laugh with you in our own wee routine will be the toughest thing. You being missing round the table will leave a great big gaping hole in our lives and I know that your brother and sister feel the same.

I am so proud of you, you're kind, funny, smart and beautiful. You have been the joy of my life and it's been the best fun to be your Mummy. I do hope that when you think of your childhood that you feel it was good and that although there was that big blip with your dad and I that you forgive us, and feel that overall, you felt secure and know that you are loved.

So off you go, into the big wide world. I've given you life so go live it but remember...

Someone once asked you where home was, meaning Scotland or England and you answered "My home is where my mummy is" and may that always be true.

Sunday 12 September 2010

Poor poor auntie

I think I missed the memo that said for 2 straight months we are going to take every penny auntie earns and then take some more.

I am a poor, poor auntie.

Things that are making me poor, in no particular order are...

My Eldest Beautiful Daughter and her imminent departure to the place where they take all my money and she gets to perfect her partaying technique. Who knew she needed so much stuff? and Marks and Spencer £7 for a colander? Would you give yourself peace!

My car - a service, a coil fitting and road tax means I have spent £592 in a month on my car. IN A MONTH (in capitals for emphasis) I do love my car and it has never cost me as much in a year as it has in the last few weeks. Baah - that's a middle aged lady exasperated noise for the young uns amongst you.

My son - if he grows 1 more inch I will have to cut a hole in the roof, how can his legs be that long? For the first time in my life I am grateful for the jeans below the arse showing the pants look, it means I don't have to go into TopMan every 4 weeks and hand over £90 for 3 pairs of jeans. I am replacing jeans that haven't even had time to get dirty for feck's sake.

My watch - the ex mr auntiegwen bought me a watch for my Christmas 2005. This watch was a Cartier Tank Francais, it's a lovely watch, very plain, very simple, not bling in the slightest. But it cost him a fair amount of cash. Last week it stopped working so I popped into the jewellers, foolishly and naively saying to EBD if I put it in before we had lunch and did our shopping we'd be able to pick it up at the end.

When you have to ring the doorbell to get in a jewellers you know that's not a good sign.

When the nice young man tells you that you can't have just a battery changed because your watch needs serviced, you have your bemused and confused middle aged lady face. Why do watches need serviced? It just sits on my wrist telling the time. Isn't that what watches are supposed to do?

When the nice young man tells you that it will take 2 months to do, you have to resist the incredulous explosion of "WTF" that is screaming inside your head, remember you're in a posh jewellers and you have your nice middle aged middle class lady face on.

Then to round it all off the nice young man tells you it will cost £245. Yep, you read right TWO HUNDRED AND FORTY FIVE FECKIN POUNDS!!!!!!!!!!!!

Because I suppose, the Cartier people have specially employed watch fixing fairies who fly over specially and take your watch on a red velvet pillow to their special watch fixing palace. Then, with gossamer wings, they polish the steel (not silver or white gold or heaven forbid platinum, just bog standard steel) and kiss the watch back to life and fly it back again. I expect that's why it takes so long and costs so much, I mean fairies don't come cheap, do they?

I won't even begin to do the nice lady things maths because I know it'd be enough for a Chanel 2.55 and a pair of black patent leather platform peep toe Louboutins and a bag of chips on the way home.

All together now, poor poor auntie

Friday 10 September 2010

I'm so proud...

Hot Boy won £79 pounds on the lottery on Wednesday, he texted EBD to tell her and also to say he was going to spend it all on lottery tickets as it seemed like free money. He went on to say he hoped he won so he could give half to her and she wouldn't have to go to university. (It's been a teeny tiny bit tense chez auntiegwen as Hot Boy is more than a little rattled about EBD forthcoming departure.)

The mummy worry meter turned itself on...

ag - "But, you'd still go to uni even if you had a million, wouldn't you?"

snorting EBD - "Hell no, why would I bother?"

The mummy worry meter cranked up to mild disconcertedness...

ag - "What would you do all day?"

and without missing a beat, a peko second later came this reply,

EBD - "Prance round my new pool on my pony"

My Presbyterian work ethic's completely bypassed that child then.

Wednesday 8 September 2010

I've had a very puzzling day

Today when I arrived at work I found the carpark absolutely full. Not a space left and some very creative parking had been going on. Our office only has 4 people working in it, I always arrive first and the carpark is completely empty. I had to park round the corner and walk back, an hour later when everyone else arrived the car park was back to it's normal empty self again. They looked at me like I was mental when I told them I couldn't get a space.

At 11 am my lovely gorgeous shiny purple crackberry pinged a new email. The sender was the ex Beautiful Man, I nearly died when I saw his name in my inbox. We haven't spoken since January 2008 when I left him. I had to have a coffee before I could open it, when I did there was a sweet soppy message. This confused me muchly. I became even more confused when I read the date sent 27th June 2007. WTF? I don't even begin to understand that.

I'm sure there's a perfectly reasonable explanation for it. Or there's always gin.

Sunday 5 September 2010

Family Portraits

Today the most patient photographer in the world came to take a family photo of us. We are extremely difficult to photograph at the best of times. We don't look the right way at the right time, we blink, yawn, scratch and develop nervous tics. We surpassed ourselves this time though.

Eldest Beautiful Daughter had been in London as Hot Boy had been playing a gig in Kilburn, she got home at 3am. Tired and hungover was the look de jour.

Beautiful Baby Daughter had come out in a rash all over her face and was in tears because of this, poor wee scone. So red and lumpy was her only choice of face.

The Beautiful Son was spending time away from both the fridge and his X box, not to mention being asked every 2 minutes to pull his jeans up as his pants kept showing. Arsey is how I'd describe his look.

As for your auntie, I think I look like a perfectly regular human in real life, I don't look remotely normal in photos. I seem to acquire 3 stone and accompanying chins and by the end TBS said I was smiling like a serial killer. I look a bit like the love child of Lorraine Kelly and Jabba the Hutt.

However, the most patient photographer in the world was determined to get a good family shot. She had us pose in the conservatory, in the garden, on the stairs (and she had to stand on the downstairs loo to get those done), hugging, close together, far apart, smiling, not smiling, sitting, standing and all kinds of posing. No wonder Kate Moss looks bored and does drugs.

Then after 2 hours and 118, yep you read right, one hundred and eighteen pics she called it a day. When I get the one we won't frighten people with I'll show you, and you know it will be just the one.

Monday 30 August 2010

Only in my life

Friday night saw my kitchen table groaning under several bottles of alcohol. I remarked to Hot Boy "Someone has a big night planned" and then Hot Boy replied that he and Eldest Beautiful Daughter were going to have sex on the sofa.

Just before I had a stroke, EBD pointed out it was the name of a cocktail. One of the few times in my life I was actually glad that my daughter was going to be drinking copious amounts of alcohol. And not having sex on my lovely sofa.

The next morning saw the kitchen contain myself, EBD, Hot Boy and the ex mr auntiegwen who had come to collect The Beautiful Son and Beautiful Baby Daughter. TBS wandered in and said in his very old man Scottish accent (yep, he's still doing that and sadly, I still find it funny) "All right Hot Boy, did you and her have your sex on the sofa last night?" and then Hot Boy saying "I did but she was too tired, she just went to bed"

It's actually quite amusing to watch what must have been your own reaction on someone else's face. Poor ex mr auntiegwen he must worry about his children, left in my care.

Friday 27 August 2010

This week I have been mainly...

My life this week has been filled with undeniably necessary but very tedious work, kids, life, supermarkets and money stuff. There are no great imparting of wisdom's from your auntie (are there ever?) or even wee funnies to lay upon you. But as I am a sharing, caring sort of auntie...

This is what's been in my head this week.

My car needed a coil fitting, not to stop her reproducing more little A class Mercedes (that might help my cash flow somewhat) but to make her drive nicely and to stop the nasty warning light appearing in my dashboard. It cost me a lot of money. In nice lady things maths I could have bought a pair of LK Bennett peep toe platforms but not a pair of Louboutains so fair play.

I finally replaced my mobile phone, just in case I ever get the opportunity to whisper sweet nothings. My phone only worked on speakerphone and if ANY but esp Beautiful Baby Daughter child heard a male voice they would appear, miraculously able to hear and have a good listen. If I actually want/need them to do a chore, I have to scream like a fishwife to get their attention, as they are constantly plugged into ipods, headsets that play Call of Duty or asleep.

I have succumbed to a crackberry, it's a beautiful shade of purple and it matches my handbag and purse. Yep, that was the deciding factor. BB pin is available on request, no idea what you'll do with it but apparently you can text me for free. Yep, the children are gutted that this level of technology is wasted on me.

I am contemplating Twitter on my new fancy crackberry. Would you like to hear more random musings squidged into 140 characters?

I have got to sell 20 tickets for a charity curry buffet evening. They cost £12.50 each and I have sold 2, 1 to Hot Boy (who can't eat in public - yep he's as weird as EBD with his quirks) and 1 to my friend Sixy who I love. I have to sell them by Monday. I have zero chance of doing so.

I am dreaming amazingly vivid and completely bonkers dreams, on Wednesday night I was flying with my friend Sixy to Nice which was in Monaco in my dream and I was about to miss the plane which was leaving from terminal 3. In my dream terminal 3 looked suspiciously like Arrecife airport in Lanzarote. I woke up before I found out if we got there. On Thursday I piloted a helicopter into my friend Eileen's garden where she accused me of sleeping with her partner who in the dream was Leo Sayer. I can't wait to find out what my subconscious has in store for me tonight.

I have injured my feet running this week. I now have very fetching back toenails, I will have to wait until my nails fall off in a few months. Yes, I know it's gross and you have no need to know, I will paint them shocking pink and pretend they're still fine. I'm sorry that was definitely too much information.

Should you wish to ping me, eat curry with me, follow me on twitter, unravel my subconscious just let me know.

If not, have a great weekend, if you're in the UK enjoy the extra day off on Monday and just be happy that your mind is undoubtedly in much better fettle than mine!

Tuesday 24 August 2010

My summers

Due to my inefficient family planning I had my 3 children in 4 and 1/2 years. Eldest Beautiful Daughter was 3 and 3 months when The Beautiful Son was born, then she was 4 and 7 months and The Beautiful Son was 16 months when Beautiful Baby Daughter arrived.

5 years ago the get back to school campaign took most of the summer holidays with 3 sets of uniform, PE kit, school shoes (Clarks shoe shop the week before term is in my personal Room 101, wasn't that the 7th circle of Hell? ) not forgetting 3 new school bags, 3 new lunch boxes and 3 new pencil cases and all the things to put in them. Then I had to label everything for all of my 3 beautiful children when all I needed was a stiff drink after spending what felt like weeks cajoling very reluctant, hot and bothered offspring round shops.

I now only have the Beautiful Baby Daughter in a uniform and needing school shoes. There is only her school bag and pencil case to be filled. This is the least year she will need it. Next year she will join her brother at the 14-19 college we have here.

The Beautiful Son goes to school in his own clothes, and takes a pen just in case his classroom doesn't have a computer or a laptop for him to scribe onto his school account and be saved on a memory stick. He keeps all his school equipment in the back pocket of his hanging off his arse jeans, showing a buttock clad in Jack Wills or TopMan pants.

To stop me getting bored and to replace the stress lost by me not having to play the get 3 kids back to school game, a new addition to my summer has been the wait for results game. This is the finale of the cross shouty screaming exam month of June where my children attempt to sit more exams than they eat meals. I love June and August. Muchly.

Sending all good thoughts to fellow parents who are, like myself, waiting for an offspring to meander home with their GCSE results. The Beautiful Son has sat half of his this year and will get to do the other half next year. Don't get your hopes up, he managed to be late for some and then sit the wrong paper for another.

So for the last 3 years I have spent August waiting for results, I will spend the next 5 years doing the same. Then Glory be to God in the highest, in 2015 Beautiful Baby Daughter will sit her last exams, her A2 levels and will leave school.

Then I will have a big gin and hope I can still afford to live in a house as I have to give all my money to the place where they take my children and train them to drink and party to Olympic standard, I believe some people call them universities?

Should you have any back to school shopping to do, the lovely people at vouchercodes have money off vouchers for school stuff. Just click on the name of the store you would like and the magic bloggy fairy will take you there and give you money off. So if you want you could go to MARKS AND SPENCER or you could go to TESCO

How cool is that? and with the money you save you can treat yourself to something nice like cake or gin. You're so welcome.

Monday 23 August 2010

My funny old life

On Saturday my dear friend C took me to a comedy club. We both really enjoy stand up and the last time we went we saw Russell Kane who was great and another guy who we can't remember his name but now has his own TV show. So we had high hopes.

When we saw a man trying to fit through a narrow door with a guitar on his back and boing back like a cartoon we laughed, who knew that would be the only laugh of the night?

Then he turned and I realised I'd been on 3 dates with him, and your auntie's not laughing anymore. He's a stand up comedian who was the least funny man I've ever met, I genuinely thought I was way funnier than he was.

After watching his act, C agreed, I am so much more entertaining. C put the card for a stand up competition in my bag and thinks I should have a go, what thinketh you dear readers, would you come cheer your auntie on?

Never mind, the gin flowed, the chips we had in the interval were good, we agreed that there are no good men left to date where we live and I am still way too fussy. Thank God for friends.

Thursday 19 August 2010


This morning after a very sleepless night, the Eldest Beautiful Daughter and I went to school to collect her A2 results. We timed it just to arrive at 8am as they opened the doors.

It's quite startling to a middle aged Mummy to see so many of these teenager creatures at such a time. Who knew they were capable of morning? As the tension level wasn't quite high enough, a box of the school's results had been mistakenly delivered to a local 6th form College, this meant we had to wait for the box to come back. After 11 minutes we're allowed in, it did feel like a fortnight but my watch told me differently and who am I to disagree?

The actual exam results are quite difficult to read and I'm not talking about my middle aged at arms length squinting type hard to read, just hard to decipher and I'm a teacher for feck's sake, could they not just put in bold across the top - Your A2 result is level...
Much less stressful, all round, I feel. Yes, I do agree, if I was in charge everything would be much better, so glad you're with me on that.

Eventually we worked out the she had indeed achieved the magic B C C required to secure her place, so in a few weeks time the Eldest Beautiful Daughter will be off to the place where they take all my money and she gets to perfect her drinking technique. And if we're really lucky she'll get a degree too.

Monday 16 August 2010

Summer Sundae

Yes I know it's Monday, I've been busy! From 13th to 15th August saw the 10th Summer Sundae held at DeMontford Hall in Leicester. A weekend filled with music, comedy, film, silent discos, a pretend seaside, and as it's a festival some booze and mud. Because of the rain.

Eldest Beautiful Daughter and I donned wellies and were joined by my good friend Nota Bene and the boy. In the rain.

We watched some good bands, some great bands and some shocking bands. We talked, we ate, we drank and we laughed. In the rain.

Hot Boy's band were playing main stage and we used his backstage pass to it's fullest advantage for free stuff mainly beer, cider and pizza. Hot Boy even went backstage to get Turin Brakes autograph for NB as he's a huge fan. We got right down to the front and as Nota Bene is a boy with gadgets, he very cleverly fimed this beauty. Yes, even in the rain.

Hot Boy doesn't always think before he talks and he is far too honest and a masssive giver of too much information, we've devised a system that someone will raise their hand when he ventures into this area. Sometimes Hot Boy even puts his own hand up. Suffice to say that on Saturday due to high excitement at playing and being offered both a choice of water and temperature of water for on stage, Hot Boy was very overgiddy and there were a lot of hands up moments.

He wandered backstage to find a pen and a bit of paper and wait for Turin Brakes to finish. When they had Hot Boy wanders up to Olly Knights and asks for his autograph and follows up with this lovely bit of chat...

No, don't put my name on it, it's not for me.

No, really it's not for me, it's for my girlfriends mums friend.

I'm not really a fan to be honest, I haven't heard any of your stuff

I don't mean it like that, what I saw out there was great

I'll be a fan from now on, honest.

We love Hot Boy even if he does talk nonsense, have far too many beauty products and wear girls jeans, yep in the video there is Hot Boy wearing my daughters skinny jeans, he's the bass guitarist with the blue T shirt, not the one in the shiny jacket. he doesn't wear sequins, yet, and for that I am truly grateful.