Posts Tagged ‘family’

OK so we filled the hole with water – now what?

Posted on September 9th, 2009 by Purple13

I took the kids swimming at one of our newly opened municipal pools earlier this week here in the U.K. The last week of their summer holidays was typically raining and windy so what to do?

“How about a trip to the swimming pool”? I suggested. So we arrived, spent an age getting a ticket to enter (one receptionist you see) and then – to the pool.  I was hoping for a slide – maybe a water jet or an inflatable – no, none of that. Typically, a rectangular whole filled with water (surprisingly warm for a council pool) and a chilly breeze blowing from the ventilation system. Lots of fun to be had in a pool you know:

Rather than have diving contests we played Sharks – one of us is the shark and has to ‘catch’ the others (think tag in a pool), we played jumping in, we played splashing each other, we swam (for a bit), we did all of the above three times and then it was decided to get out. We’d been in there about an hour and a half.

Not bad value for £6 – 1 adult (me) and 3 children – we had a quick play in the park next door and then headed home. The £1 locker money (x2) being spent in the food vending machines on the way out. Of course, driving home, it struck me that it’s pretty crazy really – I mean it’s just a hole filled with water and yet we managed to pass the time quite successfully I thought.

What’s your take – do you have a local pool, is it nice or grotty & when did you last go swimming?

Family Guy, OVER!

Posted on July 7th, 2009 by Jim

Ever had yours wires crossed? Confused communication?

Hands up , I have and so have the boys at family guy:

LOL! Comments welcomed: Over!

GO! Tend to the Thorns in Your Garden!

Posted on November 25th, 2008 by Clinically Clueless


In the United States,  we are beginning the holiday.  I started thinking (run, she is thinking again!) about all the people that we “have to go see.” (Well, the “have to” is another post)  How many of you like every person that you work, visit, or interact with including family.  No one, if they were honest, would have been able to answer, “everyone.” 


There comes the dilemma.  What do you do with aunt Sally who continues to call you her “sweet baboo” and you are 46 and not six anymore (not that you liked it then either).  Or sister Lucy who complains all the time or needs to be in charge.  Or Charles who just isn’t exciting to talk with.  The neighbor who talks about all the wonderful things that he has done in his life, but doesn’t listen to anyone else.  Your brother the minister and philosopher, who is a wonderful person, but eventually talks above everyones head.

Help, what do I do…?

Read the rest of this entry »

It’s not coping – It’s surviving!

Posted on November 22nd, 2008 by Purple13

What’s your survival strategy? No not the one where you fill 20 black bin liners with soil from the garden, pile them around the kitchen able and climb inside and sit with a tin of baked beans for a month, until help arrives (in the event of a nuclear attack). No, I’m talking about survival of everyday life.

The problem is everybody always thinks their problems are more severe than anyone else’s, so much more un-surmountable, so much more on the brink of meltdown.

Take us at the moment. Mandy’s very busy with her business here in the UK- Fabulous Photo Gifts – as we head into a frantic 3 weeks of Christmas shopping before last orders are called. In my day job – the ‘ecomonic climate’ means we’re exploring ever more creative ways to get business which means working much more than the 9 to 5…..

Read the rest of this entry »

Go! Smell My Life

Posted on November 19th, 2008 by taylorblue

I’m having a hard time writing anything this week here in Canada. The temperature keeps going up and down and the situation at home is crazy! It’s been a rough one. My daughter has ADHD and she is in the middle of a re-evaluation. So this week, it’s no meds.

Now, what trouble can a 12 year old get in to anyways right? Wrong! I understand my job as a parent is to be patient, But what happens when your patience runs out? I am exhausted from trying to be patient. Everything inside of me holds in the screams and cries.

I can just hear the judging now. But, how can we learn from others when we don’t have anyone listen to us and help?

I was a young when I got pregnant. I was dating my first boyfriend at the time. I decided, yes, we would get married and have the baby because that would be the right thing to do. Little did I know he was abusive and liked to drink A LOT! I stuck it out for me and my daughter because I didn’t want to be done with my marriage at 23. But soon it was beyond safe and I had no choice, I had to leave. We snuck off in the middle of the night to a woman’s shelter.

Now, they are trying to rule out Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome because of the years I stayed. Life is not fair…

(I took this picture at the Calgary Zoo when I went this summer…his screaming really sums up what I am feeling.)

Part Two Later this week.

What do you wish you could do over and change in your life?

Not my cuppa tea. So I thought.

Posted on September 17th, 2008 by Blue Collar Goddess

“Sometimes we are too busy with the concerns of living to give much thought to life.” ~ Thom Lemmons

I had a different post about a different book recently plotted and planned for this garden of ours — that all changed earlier today when I went shopping with my daughter at a local thrift store for her Homecoming Dress. 

(For those of you in other places not stateside, Homecoming is an annual high school ritual marked by a football game [the other kind, not soccer] with the local rival school, and a formal dance the following evening — it’s a great excuse for the kids to get very dressed up and for the parental units to take pictures.  It’s usually the last time we see our kids looking this good until Prom, or the “Spring Formal”.)

While my daughter perused the clothing aisles of the GoodWill Store, I perused the massive used book selection.  For reasons still marginally unknown to me, I snatched a small hardbound novel off a shelf and flipped thru the pages. 

Jabez -- a novel
Jabez — a novel

Traditionally, I don’t read “Christian Themed Books”.  They make me feel guilty for not following through with all the promises I made in Sunday School.  I have enough self loathing these days, thank you very much.

God and I have had a careful relationship over the past few years.  I try not to blame deity for all the crapulence in my life (or yours) and God tends to leave me alone.
Once in awhile I wave to God.  I think we keep a respectful distance from each other — and that may be about to change as a result of reading this wee bit of historical fiction. 
Honestly, I’m doing some research for a paper that a few colleagues and I are collaborating on; it’s the true reason I decided to haul the tiny book home (a steal at a buck, and now that I’ve read it, the first person to send me their address can have it . . . )
I made the mistake of opening the book up when we came home an hour or so later, and I couldn’t put it down.  Not once. 
I tend to be in the process of reading four or five books at a time.  It’s rare that I’ll finish even a small novel in one sitting, however the prose of author Thom Lemmons allowed me to have a front and center seat in the narration of the life of the protagonist.  Jabez was a real person, and some of you may have heard of the Prayer of Jabez.  He is mentioned in the Bible, 1 Chronicles 4:9.
What the author did — was to give us gentle readers the opportunity to discover the meaning of having a conversation with something as deeply personal as God, and you most certainly do not need to be a Christian to have this conversation.  Jabez wasn’t. 
In fact, Jabez wasn’t quite sure what to believe in, but he did allow something profound in his spirit move him to peace.  Spirit touched spirit, and then it touched me. 
Two hours later, I finished the book and I was stunned at the power of such a simple thing as 129 pages.  I was entertained and inspired.  So inspired, that I took a gulp and decided to share the experience with you.
I deeply identified with Jabez.  For many reasons.  Not the least of them being that God just wasn’t my cuppa tea.  So I thought.

Go! Reach for the sky! (+)

Posted on July 18th, 2008 by Purple13

Well I’m going to be in bad books with the kids when they get back from their holiday in Anglesey!

I’ve had to reformat the sky+ box after trying to watch the Bourne Ultimatum on Anytime for the last four nights. Just at the dramatic bit, it stops playing and freezes. A reformat is the only cure.

Gone are all those soap episodes they’ve been following and the full series of House the middle one has been saving. A couple of Mandy’s art programs and my Thunderbirds are Go recording, along with the last episode of Doctor Who – boo hoo.

So what task have you had to do today that made you unpopular with the family?

Go get the shizzy. The lowdown. The faqs.

Posted on July 13th, 2008 by Blue Collar Goddess

Cuyahoga Falls Italian Festival

(I am somewhere in the above picture — taken last night at the Italian Festival in Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio)

With the blessing of J&E, I’m going to repost the letter I sent them this morning:
This Blue Collar Goddess doesn’t have the time to write on her own blog, let alone anyone else’s.

My recent divorce, move from California, enrolling two students for University, keeping an eye on a High School Senior and a shiny new Corporate Job with a giant Corporation leaves me just enough time in the evenings to make a round on Face Book — and call it quits for my internet time.
When I applied for the job at The Giant Corporation, it was a 50/50 shot in the dark for me, and to my surprise they actually hired yours truly here.
I spend 14 hours a week in my vehicle just getting to and from the gig, and nine hours there.  If not more.  Usually more.
At my age [update: 43] starting at entry level gigs in Corporate Monsters can mean only one of two things.  I am very stupid.
I am very ambitious. 
They wouldn’t have hired me in their marketing dept. if I was stupid.  They smelled “ambition” on me and reeled me in.
I have six to nine months to prove myself before they bump me up into the next level.  The sky is the limit.
Because my ex husband is a douche bag and I am on my own, I must “pay attention” while also paying bills.  Those bills do pile up.
Alas, I must take a hiatus from the jobs that don’t pay — one of those being a frequent poster on GSTF.
This is not a resignation, mind you, so don’t put me on the compost pile, you can put me out to the North 40!  The Pasture!  However, I’ll leave it up to you to make the final call on whether or not you wish to keep my badge up.  I cannot contribute frequently, or on a set schedule.  Believe me, I had no idea that I would EVER work for The Giant Corporation at the Corporate Level and do what I’m doing now.  It just never made sense to me until I panicked and realized that I couldn’t pay my bills on good intentions, fuzzy ideals and a lack of steady income. 
That being said, I was pondering over the possibility that you should gather up a posse and start a weekly column called, “Go Ask The Aussie Cynic”. 
Sort of like an advice column similar to that of Ann Landers or Dear Abby, but with a twist.  I’d come around for THAT, for sure.
Cheers back atcha,
Your Blue Collar Goddess
Yes.  I did call my soon to be fourth ex-husband a douche bag.  Yes, he really is.  Five months into the marriage, I realized I’d made the biggest mistake of MY LIFE — and I gotta tell ya, I’ve made some doozies so that statement doesn’t come with a small amount of exclamation points.
*long pause for effect*

Movin’ along, J & E made a recommendation that I toss out to y’all a heads up regarding ideas for “Flower Smelling” time management strategies whilst enduring that 14 hour weekly trip. 
I was considering investing in some audio CD’s to learn a foreign language, any other suggestions?

Part of the culture in my new place o’werk is an overwhelming sense of goodwill among all employees, the Flower Smelling happens in every corner.  It’s the biggest, baddest (good/bad, not bad/bad) most amazing group of folks I’ve ever had the excellent fortune to associate with.
My brain feels like it’s going to explode each night when I battle the traffic jams all the way home, however, I think it’s worth it.
So, now you have the shizzy.  The lowdown AND the faqs. 
I didn’t abandon you, I won’t abandon you, but forgive me for hanging out in the pasture and not the garden proper.
I just don’t have the time to whine as much as I once did. 
That’s a good thing, right?
So let’s clarify all the above:
  • ==>I went to the Italian Festival in Cuyahoga Falls last night. 
  • ==>I am behind the camera (I took the picture!)
  • ==>My soon to be fourth ex-husband is a douche bag.  (okay okay okay, I’ll define it a step further and give you a single example: the man is trying to take back the vehicle that he GAVE me when we were married … IDIOT!)
  • ==>Just moved from California to Ohio.
  • ==>I have three nearly groan up (pun intended) children who are more time consuming than when they were in freakin’ diapers.
  • ==>I have a shiny new kick ass job.
  • ==>Aussie Cynic should have a column in the forum called “Ask Aussie Cynic” so I can ask her lot’s of advice needed type questions.  You too!  In fact, I’ll be a guest commentor from time to time!  (my brand o’ knowledge and what not, eh?)
  • ==>I apologize for going awol.
  • ==>Bullet points make up half my work day.

GO! Smell the show the family guy!

Posted on June 10th, 2008 by Jim

Hi from Toronto and a BIG thanks to our flower smelling pal Dave Ross for introducing us to the show the family guy. With us not having TV in our Dubai abode we’re far from being up with the ‘must-sees’ of TV and have opted for the box sets of the likes of 24, Prison break and House.

Here’s a family Guy clip that takes us back to last week when we were sat around the ‘camp’ fire in Calgary:

So has anyone else seen this show or is it just a Canadian thing?

What others are on your hit list to watch thesedays? Do tell!

Post comments @ coffee!


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