Tuesday, 25 May 2010

The Gallery. Week 13: Friendship

Two Little Boys.

The theme for The Gallery over at Sticky Fingers this week is Friendship.

Mr Nudie is a solitary creature. Like a lot of blokes I know, he believes that the quality of friends is more important than the quantity. He has one really good friend who has been his best buddy for years now. They met through their mutual love of sailing and spent many weekends away sailing for years until I came along and ruined it all.
When Mr Nudie and I got married , I moved from London to where he lives on the South Coast. I didn't know a soul, so his best friends lovely wife took me under her wing. She is now one of my closest friends. A year later I fell pregnant with the Little Prince. Shortly after that our friends announced that they were expecting too. This meant that my friend and I shared our pregnancies and even better, we were on Maternity leave at the same time. The babies were born just five weeks apart, both little boys.
The boys will be three at the end of the summer. Already their friendship shows great promise. I wonder if they'll meet for Sunday night beers to put the world to rights in years to come, just like their daddies.............

Tuesday, 18 May 2010

The Gallery. Week 12: Self Portrait

This is my entry for week 12 of The Gallery over at Tara Cains lovely blog Sticky Fingers. The prompt this week is 'Self Portrait'. When I saw the prompt my initial thought was to sit this one out. I hate pictures of myself. I think I am spectacularly unphotogenic, to the point where I didn't even think I looked that great in my wedding pictures. I un-tag photos of myself posted by others on Facebook. I've even been through old photographs and destroyed all the 'ugly' ones. I'm not vain, just very self-deprecating.

Then I read a little more about what inspired the prompt in the first place. A touching post on another brilliant blog (you can read it here) about precious photographs of a dearly departed Mum. The essence of the post was that sometimes photographs are all we have left to remind us of someone precious when they are gone. Gulp. Thanks to my penchant for destroying all evidence of me looking like a minger and hiding whenever someone brings a camera out, there are no recent photographs of me. None of me with my beautiful boy. None.
So brings me to my chosen photographs. They are not self portraits in the literal sense, I didn't take them (they would be truly awful if I did). I think they're rather apt though. They go with my nickname as I'm very nearly Nudie in them. I know what you're thinking, here's someone who claims to hate having her photo taken posing half naked on the internet! To be honest I would have treasured these photographs regardless of how I look in them, they were of such a special time. I think these are photographs my son would cherish.
That's him I'm a growing................

Fuck. That's my cover blown then.

Sunday, 16 May 2010

Shit my kid ruins.

This post is inspired by a website I stumbled across whilst wasting time on the interweb the other day. It is imaginatively titled 'Shit my kids ruined'. The clue is in the title. Go and check it out, it is VERY funny, whether you have kids or not. In fact, if you don't have kids, you'll probably breathe out a sigh of relief whilst simultaneously glancing smugly at your minimalist living room and your pristine white sofa.
I have a kid who loves to ruin shit. Oh how I empathised with the parents who had submitted those photographs as I scrolled through them, a knowing smile on my face all the while. I wonder if there is a parent out there who hasn't had a treasured item of furniture/carpet/item of clothing (delete as necessary) completely ruined by their little darling(s).
My little prince is three months shy of his third birthday. The past year has been a particularly productive one for ruining stuff. I honestly didn't appreciate quite how destructive toddlers can be until I had one of my own. Sure, we had thought of all the obvious things like moving all glass objects out of his reach for the foreseeable future, and pens below waist height are a no no of course. There are child locks on all of the kitchen doors lest he swallow some sort of toxic substance, but also because I don't want my wedding china smashed to smithereens with a wooden toy Hammer. The poor Dog is daft enough too, he certainly can't afford to lose any Neurones as a result of a bang to the head with a Le Creuset saucepan.
No matter how prepared you think you are for a certain amount of toddler destruction, they are always one step ahead. It would never have occured to me for example, that my child would find an overripe Banana in my bag, clean the window with it and wipe his hands on the curtains. I still well up when I recall the time when I emerged from the shower to discover that he had removed the head from my electric toothbrush and carved a swirly pattern with the sharp metal bit into the headboard of my Three Thousand pound (ouch) Walnut sleigh bed.
Most of the destruction seems to occur when I am in the shower. I often come out to a scene of devastation. What am I supposed to do, not wash? Is this the fate that befalls all parents of toddlers, or is mine particularly destructive? I would also be interested to know if Boys are more destructive than Girls. Answers on a postcard please.........
In the meantime, here are some pictures of the Master at work.

Thankfully he has grown out of it now, but the Little Prince used to crawl into the fireplaces at every opportunity, covering himself and everything in his path in soot.

This was a shower incident. I came out- and there he was daubed in mascara. Funnily enough, the only place he hadn't got it was his eyelashes.

This delightful incident took place last week. It went quiet- a BAD sign. I found the little sod in the back bedroom having unzipped a Pouffe. There were eleventy million polystyrene balls everywhere. Ever try cleaning them up? They stick to bloody EVERYTHING. I kid you not, I was even picking them out from between the child's Butt cheeks. It took Mr Nudie and I two hours and two vacuum cleaners to clear that shit up.

Looks pretty chuffed with himself, doesn't he? I think his exact words were 'Look! I makin Snowman'

Grrrr. That is all.

A week on. I'm still finding those poxy balls everywhere..................

Wednesday, 12 May 2010

The Gallery. Week 11: Men

It is week 11 of The Gallery over at Sticky Fingers. The prompt this week is Men. I could have come up with something highly original to do with Men, but no. Like almost everybody else, I want to post photographs of the most important Men in my life.
I am the lone female in a house full of boys. There's Mr Nudie of course, and our Little Prince. Ginger Dog is also a boy, as is the latest addition to our family- Stitch. I don't have any photos of him yet. I always used to think I would have liked to have daughters, but I'm really happy with my boys. As the lovely Mr Nudie put it recently 'You are the most important lady in three boys lives'. I love that I am. Here they are. My boys.


This is Mr Nudie. The love of my life. My best friend. The first photograph is of him on our wedding day. The one below is of him on our honeymoon in Indonesia. I still get goosebumps when I look at that one.

I love this photograph. This is Mr Nudie and the two day old Little Prince being introduced to Ginger Dog. All of my boys, together. They are more than just the Men in my life. They are my life.

Tuesday, 11 May 2010

What am I doing here?

Why am I here? That is a very good question. Blame Bec. It's all her fault. Bec, my very good friend who writes a freaking hilarious blog called Beetroot & Gherkins, is the one who got me started with all this blogging malarkey. Of course, I'd heard of blogging before I met her. I just never thought in a million years I might actually be interested in/capable of writing one. I mean, isn't that what interesting people, with erm, interesting lives do?
I had a Doctor friend a few years back who used to keep a travel blog. I never read it. I thought his blog was another way of showing off (he was a bit pretentious) what a kerrazzy life he led. Every time an email update landed in my inbox, I ignored it. Copenhagen this weekend, Reykjavik the next. Oh how lovely, sorry- I thought Junior Doctors worked really long hours and had no money......
Anyway, blogs- yes, interesting people. When Bec told me she was writing a blog, I honestly thought 'about what?' I mean, we are both mums who work part time. Whats interesting about that? Then I read it and I nearly wet my pants laughing. She is laugh out loud funny. Who would have thought writing about Potty Training your kid is funny. Of course it's funny. Kids are funny. They say funny shit (about shit too, apparently). The penny dropped. That's what (parent) blogging is all about. Sharing your stories, good and bad, funny and not so funny. Our kids aren't little for long, and this is a great way of writing things down so we don't forget.
I have my lovely friend to thank for my addiction to Twitter, too. 'You should go on Twitter' she said. 'No bloody way' I said. 'The house is already a tip, I don't have time for Twitter'. Of course, I joined up the following day. What did I find there? That most of the people I followed wrote a bloody blog.
I read a brilliant guest post written by Josie at Sleep is for the Weak for the Angels and Urchins blog about why she started blogging in the first place. It really got me thinking. I left a (very long) comment. One of the things she said that stuck in my mind, was how in her early days as a blogger, she felt like a child in a playground watching all the cool kids playing. I empathised with that because I'd started feeling a bit like that kid on the edge of the playground myself. I had blog envy. Twitter induced blog envy!
So, here I am several weeks after I read that post, finally having a go at this blogging business myself. I don't know why it took me so long. I am the queen of procrastination. What shall I call said blog? What the f*** will I talk about etc. I can't even decide what pants to wear of a morning (big, granny ones generally, so why the procrastination?) You get the picture.
I've done it now, finally. Who knows what I'll ramble on about. Shit probably. But hey, I hope you'll join me on my little journey into Blog Land. I will never write with with the eloquence of Josie or be as funny as Bec is, but one thing you can be sure of............there will be swears.

Wednesday, 5 May 2010

The Gallery. Weeks 9 and 10.

This is my first ever entry to The Gallery over at Sticky Fingers on my shiny new Blog- eeek! This post is inspired by weeks of Twitter-induced Blog envy. I have been snooping on other peoples blogs, gazing longingly at the photographs and wondering which of my own photographs I would have applied to each theme. I have been harbouring this blog envy for a while ( a post in itself I think) so why it has taken me so long to do anything about it is anyones guess. I have finally done something about it though, so enjoy the photographs. There will be many more.
Week 9. Portrait
I really wanted to post an entry last week for the 'Portraits' theme, but I don't have a scanner and I didn't quite get my arse in gear to take my old photo somewhere to be scanned in time for the Gallery link up last wednesday. Anyway, I still wanted to post my pictures for that theme so here are a couple.....
We don't have much in the way of portraits hanging on the walls in our home. I prefer the more contemporary 'reportage' style of photography, whereby the shots are more candid and therefore the results are more natural. However, I do love old photographs, especially of my family and particularly of my parents as children. When they were young, portrait photography was far more popular and the norm. I have chosen a photograph of my lovely mum, taken when she was about two and a half- the age my Little Prince is now. The similarity between them is quite striking I think. The photograph of my boy is by no means the best I have of him, but it is the photograph that best demonstrates the smile that they share.

Week 10. The World around us.

This weeks theme is 'The World around us'. Some people have taken this theme literally and have posted photographs of a secret place that is special to them in one way or another. Some have shared photographs of a favourite place in the world that they have visited. I couldn't honestly choose which of the wonderful places I have visited over the years is my favourite, there are just too many and each hold special memories for different reasons. One place that does stand out, simply because I had never been anywhere quite like it before or since, is China. It is such a unique and amazing place with a unique and amazing culture to boot. Also, it is home to one of the Seven Wonders of the World. Which is why for me, it was the obvious choice for the Gallery.

View from a watch tower on the Great Wall
This really is a typical view from a watch tower. All you can see for miles is the seemingly endless
'wall' snaking into the distance. Well, it does go on for some four and a half thousand miles! I trekked the wall for eight hours a day for six days in a row and sometimes this view was all you could see. I never tired of it.

Typical view from the Great Wall

A visit to a local school
We were priveliged enough to camp in the grounds of a remote local school for a night. The local people were so hospitible and the children were absolutely fascinated by us, as we were with them. Aswell as being quite honestly the most beautiful children I have ever seen, they were the most polite and endearing. We stayed for the 'raising of the flag' ceremony, which is performed by the children each morning. There was not a dry eye. Beautiful.