27 April 2011

The Gallery: A hidden Green...

A tiny green oasis...

The Gallery prompt from Tara at Sticky Fingers this week is 'Green'.
This is a photo I took last year from a balcony in, of all places, The Royal Marsden Hospital while I was there with hubby.
Slap bang in the middle of London. On the busy Fulham Rd.
With tall buildings surrounding all four sides, with glass and steel pipes and air conditioning units, sits a calm and quiet oasis.
Who'd have thought there could be something quite as pretty and quite as green as this?

22 April 2011

Brighton Parkour...I LOVE living here.

A friend of mine posted this on Facebook and I wanted to share it with you.

I'm guessing they come from Brighton. I'm not sure, but whether they do or don't, it's quite wonderful to watch them leaping around my City.

Have a look and see where we live, from a slightly different perspective. Also, one of the buildings they use a lot is Teen D's school.
I don't remember seeing these guys bouncing around her school when she was there? I would've noticed, wouldn't I?

Brighton Parkour from Visive Productions on Vimeo.

19 April 2011

Contents of my Fridge...Really?

I have been well and truly tagged by the lovely Chris at Thinly Spread. I am currently trying to think up a suitable punishment, the naughty step or time out isn't doing it for me on this one.

The meme is to take a photo of the contents of my fridge and to also list the contents. And, yes, I'm doing it, don't judge me too harshly. Good luck being able to see anything in there, it's a feat of engineering to get all that in, and don't even think of moving anything once it's full. The contents have a regular habit of 'jumping' out at you...

Top shelf:
2 x Mature cheddar cheese. 2 x 2 pack of Steak slices. Takeaway Chicken Korma & pilau rice. 3 pots of yoghurt. Jar of horseradish. Jar of Mint sauce. Jar of Branston. Coleslaw. Large pot of houmous.
2nd shelf:
Bottle of Honey & Mustard dressing. Multipack of yoghurts. 6 pack of sausage rolls. Pack of 18 pork sausages. 
3rd shelf:
Container of Greek salad. Apple juice. Ready made sticky pudding. Box 12 eggs. Garlic bread. Takeaway naan bread. 
Bottom shelf: 
More yoghurts. Green beans, Mange tout, Celery, Cucumber, spinach, mushrooms. Ready made lasagne (so shoot me). Squeezy bottles of mayo and salad cream. 2 packs of raspberries. 
2 x 4 pints semi skimmed, Orange juice, 2 packs of spreadable butter. Mini pots of houmous, 3 packs of cream cheese, 1 pack of Boursin, 2 errant eggs. 2 packs feta cheese, pack of butter, parmasan, 1 & 1/2 packs of mature cheddar.
Left drawer:
1 Bag pre-prepared salad, Bag of rocket, bag of salad tomatoes, 1/2 iceberg lettuce, more leftover Greek salad.
Right drawer:
2 packs of sliced chicken breast, 2 packs turkey breast, 4 packs sliced ham, 1 pack garlic sausage, 2 packs smoked bacon, 1 pack salami. 3 packs of smoked gammon.

Phew...that's it.
I'm supposed to tag people now, but I'm exhausted! 
Feel free to jump in and do the meme if you haven't already been tagged...

18 April 2011

Did you guess what it was?

This was my Silent Sunday photo yesterday....

Here it is before it floated off into the night sky...

So all of you who guessed correctly, well done!. Give yourself a pat on the back.
Pretty, yes?

The mature way to deal with Teens...

You'd think I was the only person who lived in this house, yes? 
After a family evening out on Saturday, Brighton Beach and a couple of pubs. 
This was the picture I was greeted with on coming downstairs at 11.30am on Sunday morning.

Was I the first one to come down?
Had all 4 'grown' and Teen children slept in or gone out?
No, of course not. 
Two, with 2 friends were relaxing in the front room.

Yes I dealt with it. Being the mature adult I am. You know, the way we're supposed to as parents, just like all the books tell you...
I shouted. Lots. Loudly.

...it was cleared, not by me...*ahem*

14 April 2011

Mrs Lister's Q & A...A little bit about me..Or a lot depending on how honest I am!

Liz Jarvis put a shout out on Twitter the other evening. 

 Yes, I volunteered for this one. Ten pressed men and so on. I was obviously bored at the time. Pop over to her's and have a look at her answers.

This is where you get to learn all about me, or not, if I lie.

Lister’s Q&A

Which living person do you most admire, and why?
My Mother.  She's the strongest person I know.

When were you happiest?
When I had my eldest son.

What was your most embarrassing moment?
Embarrassing? Me? Never. 
My party piece when drunk is falling over. So there are a few of those!
Drunkenly falling over in a pub and ending up under a table (someone elses!), where I appeared to have lost the ability to get out from underneath it.
Falling out of a cab, in the middle of Whitehall, London, in high heels, short floaty skirt and very, very small knickers. Many, many bus stops in Whitehall. I got a round of applause *curtsies* "Thank you"
Take your pick.

Aside from property, what’s the most expensive thing you’ve bought?
Do my new windows count, or is that part of 'property' ? If it counts, my windows. 
If not, then my car.

What is your most treasured possession?
Our bed. I love our bed. It's not expensive (Ikea) but it has a wonderful comfy mattress, loads of pillows, gorgeous bedding and it's so pretty. Not sure I'd want to have to rescue it in a fire though! That would be mine and Ian's Wedding rings.

Where would you like to live?
Exactly where I am. I've only lived in a few places. South Wales, Hemel Hempstead, NW and East London and Essex. But Brighton is 'the one'. I would not want to live anywhere else.

What’s your favourite smell?
I have LOTS of favourite smells. Can I have more than one? I'm going to anyway.
New baby. Suntan lotion and the beach, combined. Fresh laundry. Doughnuts. Cigars.

Who would play you in the film of your life?
Susan Sarandon. She rocks.

What is your favourite book?
Time Travellers Wife.

What is your most unappealing habit?
I still bite my nails! What? I'm not going to tell you any of the other really bad ones!

What would be your fancy dress costume of choice?
Lara Croft. But, well, um...I'd need to borrow the body too. Due to my guiltiest pleasure answer below.

What is your earliest memory?
Walking with my Nan, round a street market, eating a punnet of strawberries covered in sugar. Probably about 3.

What is your guiltiest pleasure?
Cheese. Lots of cheese.

What do you owe your parents?
From my Dad an inability to do Maths! 
My Mum? Strength, humour, love. And probably the cost of all her hair dye, to cover the grey.

To whom would you most like to say sorry, and why?
No one. I've said all my sorrys.

What or who is the greatest love of your life?
My children.

What does love feel like?

What was the best kiss of your life?
Sitting on the steps outside The National Portait Gallery, at 2am, waiting for a nightbus (when there was still a road there!). Just the thought of it now gives me goosebumps.

Which words or phrases do you most overuse?
"Oh for fucks sake" (sometimes under my breath). 
"Can you please bring ALL your dirty stuff downstairs"

What is the worst job you’ve done?
I've been really lucky with jobs. None of them sucked too much.

If you could edit your past, what would you change?
Not having a child with Ian. With my four, his two, six was enough. But? I wish I'd managed to persuade him.

What is the closest you’ve come to death?
Well, I thought I was dying with #1 son, but that turned out to be an overdose of Entinox!
Other than that, none that I'm aware of. Of course I may well have just missed being hit by falling fridges or something?

What do you consider your greatest achievement?
My children.

When did you last cry, and why?
Today, yesterday and the day before that..etc. If you already know me, you'll know why. If not this should explain all.

How do you relax?

What single thing would improve the quality of your life?
Right at this moment? A cleaner.

What is the most important lesson life has taught you?
That it's too short. Carpe Diem.

There, done. Now I have to tag some people.

Tara at Sticky Fingers
Chris at Thinly Spread
Gigi at Gigi's Ramblings

Come on, tell us some stuff!

13 April 2011

The Gallery: Tomorrow...

"Never put off till tomorrow what you can do today"

In the spring of 2009 I left my 28 year job as a civil servant.
In celebration of shaking off the shackles of a job that by that point had become boring and mundane, and the end of a daily 4-5 hour commute into London I decided we needed a holiday. Not our usual car drive, ferry, chalet or caravan type family trip, but somewhere we'd never been before. 

The kids suggested the States, that didn't really appeal to me.

Ian then suggested Greece. Specifically a Greek Island, Poros, which he'd been to twice, years before, and was one of his favourite places and would love to go back to. But he explained though stunningly beautiful, it was a quiet, relaxed and chilled Island, not a clubbing, touristy type one.

Ah, right, so maybe not the best place to go with 8 (yes, eight, the kids took a friend each) Teens and young adults. I thought they might need more excitement, a place with a bit more of a buzz. Two weeks on an island with only one nightclub could get very boring, very quickly.
I even suggested it sounded like the perfect place for us to go when he retired, just the two of us, without the children. Maybe we should save it as a retirement holiday for him?

You would not believe how happy I am that the children and I decided we'd 'trust' Ians choice (after MUCH googling of course!).

They were happy to be chilled for two weeks and bask in some sunshine and Greek beauty.

We stayed in a beautiful villa overlooking the quay.
Late mornings with breakfast on the terrace. Slow walks & bus rides to beaches for lunch.
Long, long lazy evening meals that started at 8pm and continued till 12pm. Lots of walking, reading, eating and drinking. And yes, the kids did go the the one and only club, all of two times. But they seemed perfectly happy to while away the majority of their evenings spending time with us, wandering round the sea front, stopping for a drink or playing cards on the terrace (the villa had no TV), laughing, talking and watching the coming and goings of the quay, while going through sensible copious amounts of local beer and local brandy.
It was a very special time, for all of us.

I'm so pleased Ian convinced me we should go there as a family and not wait for his retirement, so, so relieved...

...because we really never know what tomorrow will bring, do we?

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This weeks Gallery prompt from Sticky Fingers is 'Tomorrow'. Pop over and check out all the other entries.

6 April 2011

The Gallery: Mother Love...I get it!

This weeks Gallery prompt at Sticky Fingers is 'Mothers Love'. 

That gut wrenching, full to overflowing, heart stopping, exciting, fear inducing, joy filled, awe inspiring emotion. There is nothing like it in the world, nothing.

I love my children with every fibre of my being. Every teeny weeny atom. 

But it wasn't until I had children I finally understood. 

#1 son with Mummy and Daddy...
  "This is how my Mother feels about me and my sisters"

My beautiful Mum...
 I never realised. Stupid eh?

Me and #1 son...
Mum, I get it now...