When your child realises you’re more than a mum…

On Sunday evening my nine year old son did something that simultaneously floored me and made be beam with pride.


I’d just finished singing the encore at the concert that my choral a capella group, the Corenno Singers, had put on.  It had been a wonderful evening in the most idyllic of settings, the Palladian church in Ayot St Lawrence, the hamlet famed for being the home of George Bernard Shaw.  I caught a glimpse through the tall slender church doors of the sheep grazing outside as we tailed off my favourite set ‘Lullaby of Birdland’ Continue reading

Parenting ‘quiet’ kids: with the help of Susan Cain and Quiet Revolution

QuietRevQuoteMy daughter, and son, are both ‘quiet’ kids.   I know that sounds like an oxymoron.  The words ‘quiet’ and ‘child’ aren’t exactly two words you’d put together, right?  What I mean is, they’re not boisterous, loud, on the go, ‘out there’ kids.  We all know those.  And they’re most likely extroverts.

Ok, my son definitely has his moments when he can’t stop talking and can be very very funny.  But overall, and most definitely out in public, they’re both reserved, deferent of adults, the last to start a conversation. Basically, quiet.   This doesn’t mean they’re not sociable.  On the contrary, they love company; they were never the type of child to hide behind my legs when someone came to the door.  But when in company, they will always be the responders, not the initiators.

In this respect they are their father’s children.  Put it this way, if you met me and my kids without my husband, you’d wonder if I’d adopted them. My extrovert, talk-to-anyone personality is what prompts the regular label of ‘Embarrassing Mum’!

So it’s not hard to imagine my delight at stumbling upon the website Continue reading

Help! My family’s got Pre-Puppy Tension (PPT)

“I’ve been told to say Thank You. Not sure what it is though….:”

After months, if not years, of waiting for a dog, the atmosphere in our house this week has become, shall we say, a little crazy.  With the puppy’s due date collection date being this Saturday, strange things are going on in our household…..

  • My son has been waking at 6am unable to get back to sleep with excitement (thankfully staying in his bed – he’s considerate like that).  Then on Thursday evening he decided the only way to fill the waiting dog crate was to get in it himself……

Continue reading

Train of thought

Commuting cartoon“‘Ello?” growled the voice to the left of me. “It’s me. Yeah, alright?,” the bloke continued into his phone.  “They tried to nick me for armed robbery.”

My eyes jerked open.

It was Friday evening.  I’d escaped the kids and all domestic chores and was blissfully heading into north London to see a play with my Irish cousin and partner.  After a rather intense week of my two putting up with only each other for company, I decided to do some mindfulness meditation based on the Headspace approach (more on that another time). Continue reading

How to buy a dog / the one where I tell you we’re getting a puppy

Which one?!

Which one?!

We’re getting a dog.

At last!  (does several jigs whilst holding a glass of prosecco – opps, bad idea….)

After years of talking about it, tossing the idea about like a cat with a ball of easter egg foil, we’ve at last decided now is the right time (sort of).  The kids are old enough to be left behind if the dog needs a piddle and it’s peeing down with rain.  Most importantly, they’re definitely old enough to help with picking up the poo – even if they will moan incessantly about it. Continue reading