How Would You Spend 20K?..really?

This was a question & challenge, and competition posed on Brit Mums here.
I know I’ve not blogged on this blog in quite a while- but this question made me want to post.
Before I get started, I have to declare my hand. (I’d never make a good poker player!)

I’m not a fan of Lotteries- I know that that’s probably not the right thing to say particularly when one is sponsoring this post discussion. But I’m sure in the interest of transparency and free speech, I do have to speak up. I guess my beef with the whole lottery thing lies in the reduction of giving to many charities- maybe my post will give you an idea of why.

20K- that’s a whole heap and a drop in the ocean too.
Our wider family have always had a conversation that goes along the lines of
‘A million pounds is really not very much money’
‘WHAATT?’
‘Well when you’ve given a share out to each family member, bought a house & put the rest in the bank, there’s really not much left’.
Maybe they have a point.. but that’s not really the point.

20K- if you asked me, and just me.maybe initially I’d think about some of the things needed for my craft hobby/business. £20,000 could buy a substantial amount of paper, inks and stamps.Big Thanks

The thing is, the patterns grow old, the designs get dated and your need for more and new and different remains. 20K on me would be a waste.

Lets go to my kids. This year has been one of tightening belts and thrifty measures. If I spent that money on things they’d asked for- it might end up being a list where electronic devices and games featured heavily.

The latest DS, an iPad mini,

3DSConverse shoes….

But, is that really a good use of 20K? Sure, they’d be happy for a time. The novelty would wear off, the games conquered, the shoes worn out &  the money gone on giving my kids short term fun.

So, rather than dreaming of what we could get, I’d rather create memories for my kids & make a difference, a real difference. Giving has made a real impact on our family- and we got way more out of it, than any of our recipients- see this post

Therefore- this is how I’d love to spend 20K. (I have no personal connection with either of these charities).

“For 8-year-old Jess the summer holidays had never been something to look forward to. Every summer was spent in the small one-bedroom flat where she lived, looking after her little brother and sister while her mum worked. She often went to bed hungry, especially at the end of the month when her mum hadn’t been paid. The summer before last she witnessed her brother’s father beating her mum which had left her traumatised.

Jess was referred to The Salvation Army by Social Services. We invited her to join a group we were taking to a summer camp. At camp for the first time since she could remember, she didn’t have to worry, she could play with other children, sleep in a bed of her own, eat three healthy meals every day and do things she’d never believed possible. She learnt that life could be different.

Our staff at her local Salvation Army centre stayed in touch with her after she returned home and made sure she and her family continued to get the support they desperately needed. And though things are still tough, she really is a changed child.
Please help us be there for another child like Jess this summer.

  • £24 could pay for a bed and three healthy meals for two children at one of our summer camps.
  • £50 could pay for 25 children to enjoy activities like climbing, abseiling or swimming.
  • £120 could help to keep our community centres open so children have a safe place to play.

I’d love for it to go here;

Hi, I’m Abdul and I’m waiting for a World Vision Child Sponsor

  • Gender: Boy
  • My age:  6
  • My hobby: football

Abdul lives in the West African country of Sierra Leone, one of the world’s poorest countries. Tragically one in six children die here before their fifth birthday. Your support will make a real difference by helping World Vision work with families, so that they have a livelihood to support their children, along with finding ways to help children go to and stay in school for the long term.

When you sponsor me you’ll be helping to give me a brighter future, and over time, as my sponsor, you’ll be able to see and hear about how you are helping to change my life. You can even send me a card on my birthday, which I’ll love!
Help make a difference to Abdul by sponsoring him today. just 75p a day.

Abdul, aged 6, from Sierra Leone, is hoping for a World Vision sponsor

So, that works out at £273.75 a year. £3,285 until he was 18. An education. A chance for Abdul to support himself and his family in the future.

An understanding that you’re helping give them a future. My kids would hear from them, understand how a little money makes a big difference in someone’s life & give them a perspective beyond their own. My kids and me would see how incredibly rich and blessed we are. We would get the best gift, beyond the little we were able to give.

Start multiplying the money. £20,000 would go a heap of a way to making a difference. Honestly- we could use the money, there are so many bills to pay, and yet, I couldn’t pass up the chance to just to outline two simple schemes to blow it on. Being lavish is easy with someone else’s money. Playing let’s imagine is delightful.

The rub comes when its mine. When I’ve a little left. What do I do with it?

Here’s to us all spending lavishly on things that make a difference! Oh, and PS- if I got to win – we’d have to think of a really good way of spending those vouchers on something worthwhile !

Keren xx                  This post is an entry for BritMums #Spend20K Challenge sponsored by The National Lottery, with more ways to win more money on the new Lotto game. Find out more about new Lotto, which starts in October, here – National Lottery website

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Losing My Sanity?

There has been a recurrent conversational theme recently amongst my friends and acquaintances.

It seems as though many are losing hope, common sense or even the will to continue.

I’m not being flippant, life just gets really tough sometimes.

Kids fight. Dreams are dashed. The ‘who’ you imagined you were/would be turns out to simply be a figment of your imagination. All of a sudden you feel more than just a little lost.

For a community of parents who are supposed to know what they’re doing, understand their kids & be a shining beacon to the newly with-child or parent-wannabees it’s easy to understand why we’re losing our heads a little.

A few years ago I came across a little book that I have scoured Amazon for on many occasions..I have passed it on to many of my friends. (Katrina Kenison- I’ve been responsible for much of your recent profits 😉 !)

She talks about a different way of life. A slower pace, a placing value on the little things, whether it’s encouraging her boys to set the table with care, notice the usually passed by things around us or simply stopping, relishing, enjoying. As Anne of Green Gables would have commented ‘drinking it in’.

Before you all think that my sanity flew out of the crack in my car window that was letting in air amidst the copious rain today, ..when you read this book it makes you have polar responses. Firstly the ‘she does not live my life, a lot of her ideas just simply would not work’ response comes. These thoughts just might end up morphing into a long sigh and a commitment to take at least one thing from the book & maybe even at the very least- to look at your kids with renewed awe for the mystery & amazing thing that is childhood. Whenever I pick that book up (& its been read several times), I remember the value of time spent with our kids, just being, just talking. Sharing & being present.

There is often an phrase meted out..’its quality time, not quantity’ that counts. As my kids get older, I’m not convinced of the truth of that. I need to see them as individuals and needing my care and nurture rather than projects to be shaped.

As little people still very confused about themselves, the world around them and how they fit in. I’m supposed to be their guide & inspiration not simply their organiser & scheduler.

This book takes me back to the core things.

The things I’ve been missing.

Those elements that help restore my sanity and focus & make me breathe more slowly and gently again.

Those little (& big) 5 bodies sleeping upstairs are the most important and precious things I’ve responsibility for & one day they’ll all be gone.

There’s a book entitled ‘Aren’t They Lovely When They’re Asleep’.

Totally.

But then I need to learn to revel in their worlds again. Regain the wonder that they see around them. Sample some of the fear they feel about lots of new experiences they face & renew the sense that we all feel deep down- the amazing privilege we have of loving & guiding these ‘gifts’ of ours.

We’ve often lost our way as parents when the speed of everything else overtakes us, when the stress of modern daily life simply overwhelms us & the pressure of trying to ‘be’ someone we’re not overrules who we know we should be.

I’m stopping tomorrow. Slowing down. Breathing just a few less breaths.

I’m going to count my blessings & you can guess which 5 things will be coming to mind.

Anyone else searching for their lost sanity too? x

Losing Hair!

This isn't my son- & why would you give a baby hair clippers to play with?!!

This isn’t my son- & why would you give a baby hair clippers to play with?!!

 

On the family front we’ve been losing hair.

Not from me pulling my own out (which could be quite likely) but simply losing it due to a haircut.

Correction.

Scalping.

I did have to bite my lip & stifle a sob.

Hubby was trimming/clipping the boys hair. He does a pretty good job. I no longer do it since I’ve been banned. (long story- not all my fault. Honest).

Someone moved. The clipper didn’t quite do what the clipper operator intended. The short cut became somewhat uneven.

My little son stood in the doorway. My face was unable to hide my feelings.

‘Mum, please don’t look at me like that’.

I couldn’t help it. I was looking at a miniature replica of a thug.

‘I’m just a bit shocked’ I spluttered.

Oh dear. Dearie dearie dear.

He’s blonde. Someone unhelpfully suggested he looked like the boy in the striped pyjamas which made me doubly sad as that film is tragic. I can’t watch it without crying.

It had a marked effect on my boy.

As my teenagers would describe it. The boy suddenly got ‘swag’.

He grew several inches taller in his own estimation & is quite enjoying the notoriety.

His friends haven’t all recognised him. He’s loved that part. One of his mates actually screamed through shock (or at least, that was his version).

Less pleasing was the sudden compulsion of everyone to run their fingers through his hair. Me too. It’s warm and furry & feels nice.

Apparently one little guy in the school told him that it felt like a ‘toothbrush’.

So toothbrush head may need his locks (or lack of them) washing more quickly. The grease of 30 hands rubbing through blonde tufts may need eradicating.

I comfort myself with the fact that it will grow.

Less comforting is the realisation that he’s not so little. That part will not ‘grow back’. Ever.

I talked to my husband after it all.

‘You know how you banned me from the clippers? Well now I’m banning you”.

The problem is, who will now operate the hair trimmers?!

See you when I’ve hidden the offending articles! xx

When Laying it on the Line isn’t always good for you.

You know, there are times when you’re honest.
You lay it on the line
You bare your soul- heart fully on its sleeve.

I wrote a guest post for Britmums here
You have no idea how painful it was to write it.

People say we’re trying to break the taboo. For us all to talk about it- for those grieving to be able to share.

Check the Twitter feed. See those trying to help.

Despite all of that- do you know after that post this week 1 person commented.
1 solitary person.
I wasn’t expecting a floodgate.
I understand that lots don’t know what to say.
Franglaise Mummy commented. She has no idea just how much that meant.
Tomorrow it’s 7 years since Natalie went to heaven. The timing of the Britmum’s post was strangely timely- despite them not knowing how much.

I’ll think twice next time.
I just might retreat back into my shell.
I’m not intending to moan- guess its just a reminder that opaqueness is less painful.

Maybe I just need to grow a thicker skin.

Again.

xx

Exams..double stress!

There is something really encouraging about seeing your kids organise themselves and take control of their learning.
I guess I’m fortunate to have kids who mostly are reasonably organised and conscientious.
However..
Isn’t there often a ‘but’ !!

There’s also a high level of attached strain.
Don’t you remember the angst..
The feeling of being overwhelmed- the uphill task. That ‘I’m never quite up to speed’ emotion that just crushes you inside.
Well it’s like that at the moment but double.
Having 2 kids one school year apart means we’ve a Year 10 & 11.
Both studying
Both doing exams.
Both stressed.
That filters down.
We’re all getting a dose.
I’m not particularly enjoying the stage where they learn to adapt to the fight or flight mechanisms. Thankfully there’s not so much flight and instead a hefty dose of fight but I guess that’s to be expected.
On the curriculum should be a ‘coping strategies for stress module’. It’s just a teeny bit crucial.
We have been gently trying to suggest some ideas to our ‘slightly panicking studying every spare moment’ teen.
It hasn’t been taken on board.
Someone else gave them exactly the same advice completely unprompted yesterday.
She was definitely thinking more about it the second time.
Guess that’s typical too.
Although it does make me smile to see her incorporating spider diagrams and index cards into her revision.
Definitely a chip off the old block ( less of the old thankyou! )
We’ve a few more weeks of this to survive.
and then their anxious wait.
Wish me luck (& truck loads of patience!)
x

Caring for the little animals!

20130426-203853.jpg

I so could write this post on two levels- and I think the human level would be more amusing but I’ll retell what happened earlier on.

I had an animated conversation with several of my kids in the car this evening about their care of all creatures great and small.
“Mum, today we’ve been looking after Josephine and Tim.
Well not Tim, he was in another part of the field & when we found him he was dead.”
I paused.
“What are Josephine & Tom” I wondered- presuming it was a silly story- they’d already acted out a truly bizarre scene 5 minutes before
“They’re bees” she replied in a serious tone, as denoting a fact.
I didn’t believe her but thought I’d play along.
“Oh yes. Josephine is poorly- we thought she’d died overnight but when we came into the gardening area, there she was. We put out a stick and she crawled onto it.”
At this point I’m becoming impressed with their imagination.
“She’s actually really good at climbing trees. Did you know that bees can climb trees?”
I admitted I wasn’t aware of the fact and she continued.
“We tried to put her onto a flower to get some pollen because she’s so weak and can’t fly”.
I was beginning to wonder if this bee was actual.
“Mum, we made her a little playground and a grave.”
“Did she die then?”, I asked delicately.
“Oh no, but she’s really ill”. ( that’s childlike practicality for you”).
Now one of my sons piped up from the back.
” We were playing with Rocky & Road”.
Now I was being had on.
His friend interjected, “yes but one got squashed and the other got kicked”.
“Ermm, what are Rocky & Road?” I enquired.
“Snails, Mum”.
I did think the names were pretty cool.
“Well someone kicked them. We were having fun and it wasn’t their fault, they didn’t see the den we’d made for them”.
My teen sitting on the front seat was now giggling and muttered under her breath “I think I’m going to wet myself”.

“There were red ants too”, Son continued, ” they were biting people”.
Son’s friend explained “yes, Humphrey ( not real name-changed to protect their identity) walked off with blood pouring down his hand”.
“Goodness”, I exclaimed, “those ants sound vicious”.
Daughter told us that the bee was hers, she was the Mum and in fact her friends were all aunties. “It’s lost it’s stinger”.
“Well it would have died if it had” I remarked.
“It could have been a wasp” wondered the teen.
“No, it’s definitely a bee and it reminds me of a spider with the way the legs move- in fact two black things crawled out from underneath it. We thought they might be its babies but they looked like beetles. One was black and got squished and the other ran off”.

Terror in the field indeed. Squishing, death and decay.
“Don’t expect to see Josephine on Monday” I warned.
“Oh, we will” she adamantly told me ” she’s a fighter”.
Turns out that the stories were true. Son and friends independently verified it.
So much to learn from these little things and so much learned by ‘my’ little things. I didn’t think they had time or the eyes to see these creatures and care for them.
Turns out I was wrong.
I like being wrong sometimes.

I need to get down and look for the micro instead of scanning the macro. Beautiful creatures and life lessons are found in the tiniest and humblest of things. A Lesson for me too!

The Power of Words

The tongue.
Sometimes silent -often deadly.
It can harness an extraordinary ability to encourage.
It can ride roughshod doing untold damage in the space of minutes that can leave a lifetime of hurt.

A weapon like this could do with a health warning.
Maybe enforced silence could be a punishment.
Communication is one of the greatest gifts we have as humans.. people are so much better than things. An afternoon with some of my friends does more to lift my spirits than a year of shopping ever could.

I had one of those afternoons this week. I met up with a friend who I’ve only recently got to know.
You know when you find one of those ‘kindred spirits’ (quoting one of my favourite childhood heroines; Anne Shirley from Anne of Green Gables).
She’s one of those.
A rare jewel. Quite rare. And not one of those all sparkle and no substance girls.
This one sparkles because she’s radiant.
She always glitters because she’s come through so much & is still shining.

We sat and giggled, shared some of the tough stuff that’s happening in both of our lives & I felt richer for it.
She’s the sort of friend I wish for my kids. The ‘I don’t need to try and be anything other than me & yet I know she’ll accept me’.
You have to hunt hard for them, I tell my kids. Know & learn what a real friend actually looks like.
Sometimes, just occasionally they surprise you out of the blue & turn up when you’re least expecting.

After being encouraged (& resisting a piece of cake = bonus), I left to do the school run.
I heard from her later.
She’d bumped into someone who had thoughtlessly said somthing really insulting. To be fair, they’d incorrectly heard a piece of information & instead of sidling around a question, they just went for it.
The answer wasn’t what they were expecting & I suspect they were feeling somewhat awkward.
They then made it 10 times worse by probing.
I’m guilty of this too.
When will we learn to stop.
Just close that mouthpiece. Apologise & move on graciously.
She didn’t.
The very girl who’d lifted my spirits had hers crushed.

Words. Powerful or deadly.
Thankfully, she won’t be permanently down about it. She’s not the sort.
She’ll stine shine, just maybe not quite so brightly for a couple of hours.

As I hear my kids saying just exactly what first comes out of their mouth, I wince.
I wince as I do exactly the same.
That’s why they have to see how important self control is when it comes to talking.
I need help with that too.

Maybe the noise abatement society might make a surprise resurgence.
Perhaps I should issue my kids with sound proofed masks when they’re feeling frustrated & want to lash out with their words.
Maybe, just maybe I should set an example and..

be quiet..
Shhh.

………

What can my kids learn about Margaret Thatcher?

There are many and diverse opinions flowing around.
This post is not about those.
There are angry & vitriolic people pitted against those of an opposite view.
I’m not entering that debate.
I have withdrawn substantially from Facebook due to my sadness over what ended up on my Newsfeed.
That’s another matter.

I have 5 kids. At least 4 of them have heard about Mrs Thatcher’s death & some were confused by the outpouring of emotion.
So what do I say.. what can they learn from her & the whole sitation?

I want them to learn that ultimately- we are responsible for our own actions.
Politics aside, a principled person stands by and up to the decisions that they make. Whether they are good ones & they do so humbly, or decisions that do not always turn out for the best- in which case they may need to apologise, take responsibility for them, take stock & move on- learning and being changed by the process.
I don’t want my kids to be pushed and pulled by the wave of someone elses ideas and principles.
I want them to think.
I want them to be able to weigh up a decision & debate with us through a difficult situation. Whatever your views on her politics- you cannot say she was a wavering sort. She was principled & actually stood for something. This post isn’t weighing up rights and wrongs- just looking at the bigger picture of what we can learn. I’m not divulging my changing political views here- so it’s not worth second guessing me.

I need them to understand that women can make a difference.
I’m no feminist- probably at the other end of the spectrum- but we seem pretty short on obvious non-celebrity women who have a message and a platform. I would explain to my girls that are tons of them- it’s just with our societal celebrity crazed emphasis- we just don’t get to see or hear about them as often. They need to know (& my boys too), that you can be taken seriously & should be, but first you need to be the person that both gives & commands respect. Margaret Thatcher had that at differing times. There are few people who would doubt her towering influence on both the country, politics and internationally.
She was a woman.
She had emotions.
It is ok to be in positions of responsibility & be both female and feminine. Women bring particular gifts & abilities that are often unique to our sex. My kids need to know they shouldn’t act like men to be thought better of in business. This world has millions of women making their roles as mothers, chairwomen of boards, CEOs, cleaners, factory workers and mentors (etc. etc.) count, & they’re doing it uniquely as women.

I’d love them to see that there are two sides to every story- even if there is a definite right or wrong. We only ever hear what the media, playground or peers want us to hear. I lived in Nottingham at the time of the miners strike. We knew about the union & government struggle. There were stories that never made the press, opinions that surprised me as a young girl. We have to look for the hurting and struggling & try and understand how to help them, whatever our political bias. Margaret Thatcher reminds me that I need my kids to learn to care, & think & watch out for those who remain part of the fallout from decisions made for them.

I desperately want them to think before they speak. I need them to think of how their actions affect other people. Mrs Thatcher did make some vital decisions that turned out for good & also ones that continue to anger people. However- nothing that she did actually was deserving of the outpouring of hate that has ensued. We’ve talked about people ‘hating’ somebody when they didn’t know her,nor the decisions she made & even if they did, what does their response to her death say about them as people? I wanted my kids to know that it’s inappropriate to rejoice over people’s deaths. I will let slip that I believe that leaving the ultimate judgement to when they meet their Maker is probably a wiser call. And whilst I do not put Mrs Thatcher in the same category as Osama Bin Laden- I didn’t want to ‘rejoice’ in his death either.
I want my kids to show respect to others that they do not agree with. I’m not making direct comparisons here- but when the class bully falls over in the playground, I would not be proud if my kids laughed. I’d expect them if they were standing there to get help, ask them if they are ok, and then go back to playing with their friends.

Margaret Thatcher stands as a towering presence in my formative years. I had to think. I had to decide what I thought about her policies. It wasn’t ok to remain a-political. I needed to have some response. She forced people to take a view on her. Something that seems less prevalent in our increasingly apathetic society. Whilst I’m not part of any political party or society & I’m not encouraging my kids to be per se. I want them to know that who I (and them) vote for actually matters. Decisions made in Whitehall affect them. I don’t want them to remain life long supporters of any party unless they keep agreeing with their often changing manifestos. Politics matters- and she showed that. I don’t want them to forget that either.

She has much to teach my kids; both politically and personally. Removing just a little of her politics helps me to see that.
How I communicate all of this to my kids without lecturing them?
Well, I need help on that one.
Hopefully the way we make decisions as a family might point to some of this.
Mostly, they need not to learn from me as I’m a bad example- but maybe, just maybe I hope to make them think.

Entrepeneurism Gone A Little Wrong!

There are some life skills we want our kids to have.
Listing the basics- balancing finances, having (& taking) initiative. Coping with disappointment. Being the bigger person. Learning to live alone. Cooking your own food.

Well, at our house there is another. Making money. Starting your own business.
Having a Dad who is a self starter with his own business & a mum always looking for ways to supplement our income, it was inevitable that the kids would pick some entrepeneurial habits.

I’m all for encouraging initiative.
Last summer’s bake sale was a fun memory. 5 kids, with cakes baked between them, regaling passer’s-by and neighbours with cries of ‘they’re cheaper than Tesco’s’ & ‘all grannies welcome’. They made £42 profit on that occasion and this sparked a possibly latent ruthless streak.

We then had older siblings selling old toys at exhorbitant overinflated prices to younger siblings who’d no concept of the value of their rapidly reducing piggy banks. We then inserted a family ‘caveat’. -No selling without running transactions before Mum & Dad first.
That worked for a while.

The olders then became targets of younger materialistic desires- littlies who had spied their belongings and were making ‘bids’ to ‘purchase’ them. There were good trades & business dealings often combined with an aftermath of tears.

Now that the older ones can bake and cook, the goalposts change again. We recently had a mini sale where in order to raise money, one kid charged the others to sample her wares. It’s mostly well received.
Before I talk about today, I have to interject with the fact that it’s not all bad. One child needed to get her pet spayed. As We’d told them they needed to be responsible for the animal’s care, they raised some money by baking. In 3 weeks, they’d managed to prise £100 from friends and family which I was utterly gobsmacked by.

Today, however, there was real upset. One kid wanted chicken. Bizarre, I know.
They’d seen someone create KFC type chicken & were determined to have a go. I’m happy within reason. She’d bought 4 drumsticks & added a cupboardfull of spices and herbs. Within half an hour there was smoke & a smell that half of the street were subjected to. I tweeted about it & one of the girls said,
“Quick, order a takeaway”.
“I’ll be ordering the fireservice at this rate” I quipped.
One of my littler ones, didn’t have the required 50 pence.
She’d only charged them 50p each!
For a singular drumstick.
The leftout one had a meltdown. They desperately wanted one. I wasn’t entirely sure why. Even the chef declined the poultry concoction.
I tried to smooth her ruffled feathers with the option of an Oreo.
She wasn’t buying it.

Somewhat laboured sulking ensued.
She came around eventually.

I may have to put a lock on my kitchen.
This raising money malarkey needs some balance.
The entrepeneurial spark needs extinguishing- or at least regulating with the ‘thermostat of kindness’.

See you when I’ve tried to encourage a spirit of sharing! xx

Absentia Bunny Duty & What if?

20130409-073745.jpgWe have a much loved family pet.
To be precise, it’s not mine- but no.2’s.
There were two of them. Sisters. Really closely bonded and they were rescued rabbits- abandoned near the vets.

No.2 is an avid animal lover. So much so that if you gave her choice she’d befriend an animal over a human, quite possibly 90% of the time.
One of the bunnies sadly died a few weeks ago.
Trauma wasn’t an understatement.

We’ve only had them since before Christmas. Truly, the love that wasn’t lavished on these pair simply isn’t worth talking about.

Just one morning with no real warning it died with 4 kids all around her. You try and get your kids off to school after that?!! (& I did shed a tear or two too)
No.2 has worked very hard trying to readjust the bun to a life of a temporary singleton. The whole losing a pet is hard. Good for learning but not for the emotions.
After she’d died & was put into another room, the kids asked to see her and say goodbye. Don’t shortcut this one I told myself. Doesn’t matter if they’re late for school- saying goodbye is part of the process.
With the image ingrained in my forever memory, one of them came in, gently lifted the towel over her & sat talking to her for a few minutes. You try not to have a quivering momma lip on that occasion! After they’d finished they lifted the towel back with such care and gentleness and then solemnly went on their way to brush their way.
Tears amongst the everyday.
Sadness shoved into the morning’s schedule.
Learning to let go of life and mourn in their own way. I’m learning not to despise their coping strategies. Little things are big things to them. Always.
My dismissal of their priorities can’t be a good thing even if it doesn’t fit in with the craziness of that hurried moment.
Sadness purveyed the house for a fault two and we learned to accept the new normal. Some accepting was instantaneous- other kids took their time.
They have learnt about grief rather more than the average family & it still hits us with its shocking intrusion.

My hubby likes them but sees the ££’s disappearing down the rabbit hole. After we’d got the remaining rabbit checked out on the fateful day in question we were about £42 down due the other bunny being terribly poorly too. Anyhow- she’s miraculously come through- and is busy being entertaining, mischievous & cute in equal measure.

Back to the reason I’m writing this post. She’s away. The daughter that is. On a week’s jolly with some friends from church.
So I’m left in charge.
Onerous responsibility is the word. ( or 2 if you’re being pedantic).
Thing is- I feel a great pressure to keep it alive. I’ve no idea quite why.
She’s very organised and has left me a schedule for morning and evening every day. She’s an efficient type.
So instead of an alarm clock every morning I’m greeted with ‘bang, bang, slide, bang’.
It’s a house bunny.
And no, it doesn’t share my bed- it’s in the loft room which is just above ours.
The banging is her clever way of getting fed. Like the ringing alarm that doesn’t quieten until you switch it off- this family member will bang until you give her greens, a measured amount of pellets and hay.
Oh, and the mess it makes.
This momma has lots of kids. They’re messy. The washing is huge and don’t get me started on the cleaning ( or at least the thought of it). All of a sudden there’s another job.
For want of a better descriptive term- this thing has prolific dropping tendencies.
Cleaning nappies off and mostly on for the best part of 13 years doesn’t make me any more desiring to clean out this family member. But I am. 3 times a day.

Anyway. She’s only away for another few days. I’m sure the fluffy thing will be fine. But it’s all on me. It’s survival is on my watch and I don’t want the responsibility.

Is this normal? Already I’m having to plan what greens she’ll be eating tomorrow and I’ve not even thought about the family tea today.
Come back, daughter no.2. The responsibility is killing me!

See you when I’ve cleaned out poop- which will be all of a couple of hours from now!!