Sunday, 27 November 2011

It's been an up and down kind of month here at BeeBee Towers. With some of the highs that come with daily life there have been some incredible lows.

I can finally talk about what has been driving me crazy, well crazier than normal anyway. Now it's a question of whether I should or not.

I know morally that I should have no shame in what has occurred and that someone I once considered a close friend decided that rather than tell me she was in financial difficulty she instead decided to turn to crime and steal a substantial amount of money from a child-based charity. Still the people involved although they plead guilty refuse publicly to admit to their wrongdoing.

I am finding this tough. I thought that this person was a good friend. I did favours for this person and visa versa. I still miss her as a friend. I have a whole where this person fitted and completed me. Her views on life to a point rubbed off on me, looking back not all of them good. I have had to come to terms with losing this person without any fight or disagreement just a police report and a court case.

Yes, she has been found guilty but it doesn't seem real. I thought that the sentence would make me feel something, and it has... disappointment. I feel partially let down by the system. Something that in my small community has impacted the lives of so many families. It feels as if the people involved are laughing at us, as if they 'got' away with something.

Why can't they admit that they did something wrong instead of blaming a larger hidden agenda?

Friday, 11 November 2011

It has been a long time since I last blogged, both here and on BeeBee's Recipes due to a number of factors.

Thing 1 and 2 went to school without a problem. They both love it. Thing 2 is coming on leaps and bounds, apart from his speech. He is on the side of really difficult to understand on certain sounds. This has lead to him being put on the speech therapy list. Now the waiting game begins to enter into the system.

Thing 1 is now Year 2, his fine motor skills could do with improvement (aka his writing sucks - so far these kids have an even split of my early school years, lots of speech therapy and even more writing drills).

As far me, I have changed my hours at work. I now roll into the office for a maximum of 6 hours three times a week. One heck of a routine change. I get to take the boys to school 4 out of 5 days of the week, and collect them every day. While all this was changing I was taking part in a writing team for a book. Fingers crossed we will find out more about that soon.

My eating plan fell by the wayside. I can only cope with so much change at anyone time. I'm pulling myself up by the bootstraps. I've not felt like 'me' for a while.

Dark evenings are here, and with that my running has pretty much gone out on it's ear. What to do now? I have a hatred of exercising in front of The Husband, I don't like to fail so having witnesses is never a good idea!

So what happened to that me time I was looking forward to? It sort of evaporated, it was so close I could taste it then the real world came and did what it does best.

So what now? Project Glitter & Sparkle continues. I am actively seeking out things to make me happy. I need to remember that by being the best me I can be I will in turn be the best mother I can be and the best wife I can be. I'm not perfect (and very much doubt I ever will be). I am complicated, I'm inquisitive and at the very most an obsessive compulsive.

This week I've happened across a couple websites, including this one http://www.pickthebrain.com/blog/10-ways-to-be-happy-on-purpose/

What makes you happy?

Saturday, 10 September 2011

It has been a very strange week. A week of success, disappointment and surprises. I can't talk about the surprises quite yet but when I can I will. Never been one of secrets, even though I suspect I have plenty of them (I just forget!)

Whatever way I look at it there is a large period of change is ahead here at BeeBee Towers. A time for reflection, a time for action, a time for structure. I truly am excited (and if I'm truthful exceedingly nervous) to see what this new lifestyle will bring.

There is also a return to something I had pre-children, time. Time to do things for me. Six years of doing things for the boys in my house. Six years of putting the Thing 1 and later Thing 2 first. Yes they are still my priority. But, if I carry on the way I have been I'll burn out, I'm already horrendous to live with on a Saturday.

However, I'm now facing those dilemmas that many other working mothers face, Childcare. Where to send them, what to do, who is the right person? I don't have any family near by. I do however have some fabulous friends. Thankfully most of the year the boys are in school. I have found a lovely girl who will take care of them on a Monday, and one of my best friends will have them on Wednesdays.

These were tough decisions, I haven't used any real childcare in the last 6 years, apart from the 9 months Thing 1 spent at Mother Outlaw's Creche one day a week, it's not the reason we have children to hand them over to others to care for. But looking back it's always happened. Now it has a name.

When I was 6 or 7 I remember there would be 4 children at the breakfast table at my Mum's house. I was an only child so I know full well they weren't siblings. What it was, in now speak, was a breakfast club. We all would have porridge with syrup and walk to infant school together. After school I would go to my Grandparent's house next to the school

This also happened before the 70s. It is a community, a neighbourhood. Something that is sadly lacking these days, yet also appears to be returning. For this I am grateful and I pray that this trend continues so when my boys have their own families that a sense community has returned and people will be there for each other.

Wednesday, 7 September 2011

I am, in general, a rather gregarious person. I on a whole like people, I like to be surrounded by people and those I love. However, I also have times when I crave peace. I like solitude, I like time on my own, to hear my blood pump through my ears rather than thoughts or the sound of my own voice.

I am at the moment finding the balance between those sides at the moment very difficult to manage. Part of me wants to stay in my PJs with a nice coffee. a good book and a blanket. The other part is screaming come on get moving just do something. I don't know which voice to listen to.

Tomorrow is a day full of change, my youngest boy - Thing 2 - starts at Infant School. At present he is only there in the afternoon, but in 2 weeks he will be there full time. This means that I will get that peace that my heart and head is craving. But now what do I do with that time? How to I fill it wisely?

Do I get myself organised at long last? Do I return to a normal pattern in my professional life?

There are so many questions, so many expectations. From me, about me. What to do? This is when I'm not so keen on being a grown up.

Monday, 5 September 2011

It's been a busy weekend, and a tricky one too.

As someone with a slight bend towards controlling things my bi-monthly nightmare rose its head... a visit to the Outlaws. Don't get me wrong, they are lovely people and I love them to bits, but their cooking leaves a lot to be desired. Syn-filled and mushy. And horrifyingly the Things both love eating Ma Outlaw's Sunday Dinner (were the best bit I fear is the gravy and brown sauce combo).

Anyhoo, I have been trawling the internet and came across this recipe on one of my favourite blogs Mmm Sauce which in turn has come from Mama Pea

So once I had worked out what Nutritional Yeast was (a type of vegan cheese - who knew?) and gotten hold of a similar product (that tastes/feels very similar feta) I made a batch of this super flavourful sauce, once I had gotten over the heart attack from actually pouring 60ml of olive oil into something.

Makes 300ml  1.5 syns per tbsp and tastes a lot like caeser dressing at a fraction of the syn.
  • 60ml EVOO
  • 28g almonds
  • 80 -100ml water
  • 28g chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 28g cheezly cheese
  • 2 1/2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 tsp minced garlic
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp curry powder
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp dried cilantro
  • Note: this recipe will keep covered in the fridge for 7-10 days
  • In a high speed blender or food processor, combine oil, almonds, water and chickpeas. Blend until  smooth.
  • Add remaining ingredients and blend until smooth.
  • Transfer to a small bowl and refrigerate until serving.
If it seems a bit thick after being in the fridge add a little more water and whisk.

It's recipes like this that really sparks my interest in vegitarianism and veganism, but then there is chicken and bacon.

What blogs inspire you to make recipes?

Wednesday, 31 August 2011

It's been one of those days, a challenging day from beginning to end. 

I have two boys with an aversion to sleep past 5am, a husband with a need for sleep but who can't, and then there is me the one who wants to sleep, can sleep but isn't allowed to sleep. Saying that, today's challenges were not all down to the lack sleepy dust at BeeBee Towers. Alas, they were down to one itty bitty almost 6-year- old boy known to you as Thing 1. 

A couple of things of note about Thing 1:

1. He has a short fuse - like his mamma
2. He is incredibly quick - like his mamma
3. He gets very narky when he is overtired - like his mamma
4. He likes to get his own way - like his mamma
5. He gets bored very easily - like his mamma
5. He thinks sleep is boring - like an alien from the planet Nosleepicus

Today we took a trip to the Hospital in our nearest city. So far so good. The Husband, Thing 1, Thing 2 a myself all arrived at our destination on time through rush hour traffic, got parked (a feat in itself) and arrived at the Eye Clinic's reception area. Thing 1 at this point is mellow. 

Eye drops time. I take Thing 1 for the 'evil' eye drops (he swears to me they smell of honey - I take his word for this under no circumstances do I want to be seen sniffing anybodies eyes). Of course they sting like a paper cut and lemon juice. We've been through this procedure before. This is the 8th eye test he has been to in the last year. We still don't know if he needs glasses or not as up to today hasn't actually completed an eye test... due to boredom. Reading is boring. 

Hearing this is like fingernails down a blackboard to me. So we've changed tack with the eye test. Today The Husband took Thing 1 into the room. Today, with a new ophthalmologist, Thing 1 has completed his first eye test! This is vaguely good news... But, we now have to come back in another month. An astigmatism has now been found in one of his eyes as well as being slightly long sighted. His eyes work perfectly, 3D vision is already at that of an adult. 

We leave the hospital at 11am, then all merry hell broke loose thanks to the wonder boy that is Thing 1. He was hungry, he wanted to eat, he wanted this, he wanted that. He needed sleep. So get him and today's ever suffering Thing 2 a sandwich, drink and crisp (not healthy but back seat of car friendly). We get home and the next moan begins, we didn't see the tardis/dalek/cyberman at the petrol station on the way home. I don't have any toys to play with and no where to sit. 

Then 2 hours of peace erupted. Thanks to the Chuckle Brothers. I never thought I'd be so grateful to them as I am today. As giggles of silliness broke I got chance to peruse my Healthy Extras in my Food Optimising Bible and discovered today's food find of the day... Stewed dried apricots (with a dash of almond and vanilla extract plus a dredging of sweetener) topped with Total 0% Greek Yogurt. Divine way to spend an Healthy Extra. 

Now I've whiled away the evening in work. The Things 1 and 2 should be asleep, The Husband should also be drowsing. I may even get to read my book. 

At this time of night, and the house is quiet all is good with the world. 

Tuesday, 30 August 2011

One more week and the school summer holidays are over, well at least for one child! As Thing 1 will reside full time in his classroom next Tuesday, Thing 2 will still be stuck by my side until Thursday, then he will go, but only afternoons until Monday 19th. It feels like forever when all he wants to do is go to school now. Thing 2 is so excited.

Today in the world of SW has not been a great one. I've had a massive gain off the back on my 2 bad nights, So it is time to buckle down again. So with my head screwed firmly in place I have a big bubbling pot of Butternut Squash and Bacon Soup on the go, and I have a week full of meals planned.

Tuesday is also the day I get my Graze box. I love this product so much. I get one box a week and there are four tubs of snacks in there. Each week they are slightly different. If you want to try a free box click the link and enter the code MJPMP5D3 you can also follow them here on Twitter.

So with my organization head on I have arrange myself a list of days to tick off as I do them. I now have 112 days of 100% days ahead of me until the last weigh in for Christmas. Speaking of which, hands up who has bought their first present yet?

And just because... as I usually do I've been meandering through my favourite blogs and I am now daydreaming about this dessert/treat from Lindsay at Gingerbread Bagels.