Thursday 17 April 2014

In which I am mostly overcaffeinated

I have had a very busy day. Actually, I haven't, and the fact that I even think it was busy means that I need to take my broken toe back to work and see what a proper day looks like again. The husband is on holidays, and so I was free to gad about all day, within the limitations of the bus routes.
I spent the morning doing a bit of dissertation, but mostly bunging small children into their clothes and force-feeding them porridge and bits of banana. Not hard work.
Then I met a friend for coffee, which turned into lunch, and a ventilating session for himself (about his mother) and me (about the wastage of money in the NHS). He went off, and I realised I'd left behind the caramel square I had been tasked to bring home, so had to trundle back round to where we'd had lunch. Fortunately, it was still there, although it had been taken into the kitchen for safekeeping.
Home, via a bookshop.
Small amount of ironing. Made very handy dinner, then was delivered to my dissertation class. The good people at the University had sent the email about the class to the wrong dissertation group, so we were all there in error. In order to prevent a riot, the tutor had us all discuss how we were getting along, and then we left - almost two hours earlier than we'd expected.
A friend offered to bring me home, so we went via yet more coffee and more buns, and a ventilating session for her (about the parlous job situation) and me (about the people we work with).
Home. Idly looked over my talk for tomorrow. Blogged. Utterly prostrate after my so-called busy day. I hate to say it, but I need to get back to work.

Wednesday 16 April 2014

Feet of lead

I've to give a talk on Thursday, and have been troubled by it for some days now. Inspiration finally struck tonight, and I had it done in no time flat - glad it did, but why must it take do long to be inspired?*

* Maybe it's not as great as I'd like to think. 

Monday 14 April 2014

Where am I?

I have to give a short talk later in the week, about my career and how I got to this not-so-illustrious stage. I feel rather a fraud, as I am still in a training post, so am not really any place other than in the middle of it all. In addition, there are some much more important people on the programme and so I don't want to appear like a pretentious dolt. 
I still can't get anything much in the shoe line over my broken toe, so I am not even sure what to wear. I suspect that jeans would be out. I might have to wear guttees, though. 
My big boy was having too much fun playing with his cousin to have his usual two-hour afternoon sleep today, so he took himself off to bed at 7.30pm, wearing all his clothes. I pulled him out at 9.30pm, changed his nappy and put on his pyjama bottoms. Sure, he will be half-dressed in the morning. Much more efficient. I might try it myself.

Sunday 13 April 2014

Head melting

I have had one of those weekends where it seems that the contents of my skull are exceeding its capacity by about 40%. It is not that my head is sore, it just feels rather crammed and about to burst, exuberantly, all over the kitchen.

One of my very nice sisters-in-law arrived yesterday, on her way to spend a few days at home. We all went out for breakfast, via a small issue with a large toy scorpion and an unhappy two-year-old ("It's scary. I don't want it," he said, quietly but firmly. It is a trifle embarrassing when he takes an instant dislike to gifts.) (But it was rather creepy.) The spouse headed off Out West with his sister, and the boys and I settled in for a day to ourselves.

The unhappy one was just away for an afternoon sleep, the smaller and happy one was snoozing, and I was contemplating (a) coffee (b) dissertation (c) a magazine (d) a combination when my really good friend, E phoned:
"Right, you said you wanted to get out. Come for coffee!"
"I can't, I'm sorry - spouse away Out West with his sister. Will you come round to my house?"
"No, come out! Meet me then! Get in the car!"
"Sure I can't drive, you eejit, my toe is still broken!"
"I'm coming to get you. We can bring the boys with us."
"We can't, the wee one's asleep and the big one's just away to sleep!"
"I'll come round."

I hate making people feel like I don't want to see them now that I have children. Anyway, E was on her way and there wasn't a bite of sweet stuff in the house, or anything nice to eat. So I made the fastest scones ever (surprisingly successful). I couldn't put on the mixer and wake the small people, and my baking cupboard needs replenished so I am a bit short on various ingredients, so I ended up making white chocolate blondies, which again were amazingly successful. E arrived just as the blondies came out of the oven, and I had a very enjoyable time. She was totally harassed by my big boy, who thinks she is brilliant, so I am not convinced that she found it very relaxing, but she is man enough not to rub it in.

In the middle of all of this, another chum started texting because his mother was driving him potty and he likes to escape in these situations. Next, the postman arrived with a very nasty letter, and an invoice for £500. I am pretty sure that this is unjustified, even though I was expecting it, but it still made me feel rather wobbly all weekend and I am still not quite settled about it all. I have written a polite, but firm, letter, pointing out the error in their assessment of the situation, and am returning their bill by registered post in the morning. It is all rather worrying. The last dealings I had with this outfit were not long before my small boy was due to be born, and I felt so ill after an unpleasant phone conversation with them that I had to come home early from work. I would point out that I am not the wobbly kind, so perhaps this is an indication of how problematic this outfit has become.

I am still feeling wobbly today. I have got very little work done this weekend. 

Thursday 10 April 2014

My brain hurts

I've been writing (not enough) and procrastinating (wildly), and I'm very tired of both. I do not know how to develop my goldfish-like attention span. Must write more!

Sunday 6 April 2014


Of course, I didn't write oodles of glorious prose, or even a couple of hundred words of a shiterature review. But I am hard at it, and am now only 1100 words behind target! Joy! Rapture!
I was deserted by the husband yesterday; he went away Out West to see his parents. I had to tell the big boy that Daddy was working very late. He is very attached to his father. I decided, a long time ago, that I was going to sing him a song*, so that when he is a big man and I am just a memory, he will sing the song to his own little ones and think of his Mammy, who loves him so much.

The song has been through a few revisions, but is currently "Mama's going to buy you a mockingbird." Because he is the sweetest little boy in town. Sorry. I didn't say it wasn't going to be cheese-ridden. So I bunged him into bed last night, in his Batman budgie-smugglers (and a nappy, I am no fool), and his Spiderman pyjamas, and his DRWHO I LOVES DRWHO MAMMY ESTER MINATE vest. "Sing me a song," says he, for we have this wee routine about it. "Oh yes, pet, what song do you want me to sing?" "Sing me the baby song! Sing me the baby song like Daddy sings it!"

Daddy has sung it to him twice, and has to look up the words on his iPhone. I have sung it until I am hoarse and could write a treatise on the lyrical content.

He is very attached to his father. I am disgruntled. I am away to bed in a huff.

* I couldn't carry a tune in a bucket, but the big boy doesn't seem to care.

Saturday 5 April 2014

Febrile convulsion

I have managed 90 rotten words so far, but am now going upstairs and am not going to bed until I've got a slightly more respectable tally for the day. I had multiple interruptions from my big boy, and I am so wrecked with emotion at going back to work soon that I have little heart for chasing him away. Then I rather unexpectedly had to visit a cousin in hospital. It was unexpected because I did not expect to be able to go, but also because we (sister and I) had slightly forgotten to arrange to visit her, and Hints were being dropped. So, we went, and had a much more jolly time than is allowed. My cousin is recuperating after surgery, having fallen at home. She is now sufficiently mended to tease her about being drunk, which she was not. In the manner of large families, she is the oldest cousin on Dad's side, and is 74. My sister is the youngest on this side, and she is 32. The nursing staff were somewhat befuddled when we asked if we could visit and they enquired if we were relatives....The nicest part about this very large extended family is that we are almost all in reasonably frequent contact. It really is very pleasing.