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Monday 24 January 2011

I ♥ Me - Week 3

This week's question by the lovely Notes is:

What Mummy/Parenting behaviours ignores your me, making you want to laugh, scream or cry?

You know what it's like, I'm sure - as a surly teenager pretty much everything your parents do is "Unfair" - the things they make you do, or don't let you do, are done purely out of spite. Their sole purpose and aim in life is to make your life a misery, right?

As you grow older, maybe you mellow somewhat - come to realise that they had some good intentions behind what you considered to be their totally unreasonable expectations. However, there are still some things that you vow you will "never do when you have your own children". After a while, maybe you are lucky enough to become a parent yourself. You tell yourself you won't stress about what they do or don't eat... you won't get overprotective and react like a frightened mother hen when they step near the precipice.... you won't...oh... wait...

Because that's the thing about parenting - a certain amount of it is learned behaviours. Maybe you did decide to become a strict disciplinarian in rebellion against your parents' hippy, laissez-faire attitudes... maybe you buy televisions for every room in the house because your parents did not let you watch ITV as a child...or maybe you just have a strange aversion to wax crayons. However, deep down, I bet you still sing the lullabys your mother sang you, insist your child wears a vest if it falls below 18 degrees C, or holiday in caravans - because it's what you learnt as a child.

Occasionally it makes me scream at myself in frustration when I hear myself uttering the phrases - "hold my hand, this is a busy road", "are you going to finish that", or "do I have to say everything three times?!", and I think "I sound just like my mother".

Then I laugh, and think "Yeah, I probably do...and it's not actually that bad..."


Now run along and click on the badge at the top and pop over to her blog to see what everyone else has linked up!

Friday 21 January 2011

Compatibility Dot Com

Miki, via Flickr

The husband and I were sat watching telly last night when an advert for one of those online dating websites came on. Spurred on by the promises of true love and real compatibility, Mr B looked at me and said;

 "I wonder if we would have come up as compatible if we had joined one of those dating websites?"
"What would you have put as your interests?", I wondered.
He had a think, and replied: "Skiing, Cars, Hockey, Slouching in front of the TV".
"Well, on that last one I guess we would have been ok..." I pondered; "...but I guess it's probably a bit more complicated than that these days. They probably use sophisticated algorithms based on multiple choice questions like whether you like animals...or stuff..."

As you can tell by the conversation, I've never had to use a dating website (ah, the delights of meeting your partner in the days when all it took was a drunken snog in a bar), but it did get me wondering on two counts; firstly, what sort of questions do get asked on dating websites to determine if you are compatible with someone (I was unable to ascertain this without registering on them, which seemed a little excessive even in the interests of research) and secondly, what compatibility is all about anyway.

It's fair to say that I had little or no interest in either skiing or hockey when I first met Mr B. He has since reluctantly dragged me onto the ski slopes (the things you do for love, eh?), and gave up playing hockey a long time ago. To be fair, he probably didn't share my love of women's shoes or yoga either. However, there's more to compatibility than the same hobbies - it's about a shared outlook on life, an ability to make each other laugh, and shared experiences. Physical attraction can never be of any harm either I suppose!

I guess at the end of the day a dating website (or newspaper ad, or any other form of matchmaking) is only a way of bringing people together - what people then do with that is up to them. Maybe it is just the modern equivalent of kissing a few frogs before finding a prince...

Wednesday 19 January 2011

I've Got A New Look!

Hello - come on in, don't be scared...

Yes, things look a little different around here, but underneath it's still the same old me. It's just now the design is a bit more "me" as well.

I can't take any of the credit though - all of that goes to the fabulous Liz at Violet Posy who managed to interpret my vague mumblings, read my mind and make me a lovely new blog design that exactly matched my expectations. (Thank you so much, Liz!)

I hope you all like it as much as I do (although frankly if you don't, I don't care, because I love it. So there).

Tuesday 18 January 2011

I ♥ Me - Week 2

So, the theme of Notes' weekly meme is I ♥ Me Monday. It can't have failed to escape your notice that today is, in fact, Tuesday, and I am terribly late (sorry, Notes!). Still, I am hoping the "my dog ate my homework" excuse will suffice in this case...

This week, Notes has asked us to answer the following question: What Do You Want For You in 2011?

Ignoring the slightly facetious answers (an Aston Martin, a Mulberry Handbag, Robert Downey Jr...) this one did make me pause. You see, what I want is probably work-related for the first time in a long time. 

I'll admit that I've been lucky - things have fallen into my lap over the past few years without too much effort having been required on my part. I have somehow managed to be promoted twice despite having had two lengthy bouts of maternity leave and am now in a role that I feel more than comfortable with, and that has allowed me to find something vaguely resembling that elusive work-life balance that seems so hard to find. 

However, things are changing. My part of the company is due to be taken over by a much larger competitor sometime in the next couple of months. My role, once a full integration process has been completed, will be redundant. I would be lying if I did not say this was worrying, however, my overriding  sentiment is positive - there will be more opportunities with the new company, and for the first time in a while I can actually scent a real opportunity for change, which is more than necessary. I fear I have got stale and complacent, and (dare I say it) bored.

So, for 2011 I would like to feel stretched again intellectually, I'd like to get thrown out of my comfort zone and get a buzz out of working with new people and processes doing something completely different.

Wish me luck.

Monday 17 January 2011

Blue Monday

"Blue Monday (Also known as Black Monday) is a name given to a date stated, as part of a publicity campaign by Sky Travel, to be the most depressing day of the year."

Monday 10 January 2011

I Heart Me Monday - No 1

My good friend Notes has created a new Monday meme -I ♥ Me", where she poses a question each Friday, to be answered on the following Monday. This week's question is : "What have you realised about yourself through your blogging"

So, what have I realised through my blogging?

1) My inner extrovert is more important than I realised

I may have mentioned before that I'm a bit of an introvert. I am the sort of person who has few, but very close friendships - most of my friends I have known a long time - and I do not easily meet new people, other than very superficially. Yet the thing I enjoy most about blogging is the social aspect, the interaction with others, even if it is mainly in a virtual way. Heck - I've even managed to overcome my anxieties and meet one or two of them in real life, and guess what - they are actually quite nice people!

2) It's important to have a creative outlet

Whilst my husband reads my blog, and occasionally makes suggestions or comments, blogging is definitely "my" thing. It makes me laugh, it has occasionally made me cry, but most of all it makes me think. And in this day and age that can't be a bad thing.

3) I can make time for things I enjoy

You may not know that I have second blog - The Fantasy Decorator - where I indulge my love for homes and interior decoration in a purely amateurish way. As well as having two children and working full time, I honestly don't really know how I find time for one blog - let alone two. Turns out you don't have to have a perfectly spotless house either - it's much easier to dream about it online and close your eyes to the chaos of the real world.

Now click on the badge at the top to be taken to the original post, and see what everyone else has linked up!

Thursday 6 January 2011

Happy New Moan

The husband has a cough.

I can precisely date the onset of this cough to just after I got back from my last work trip to Dubai at the end of November. It started off as a tickly little thing, but has since developed into a full-blown whoop, most pronounced at night. (I did try and get audio evidence this morning to demonstrate this to you, but failed miserably).

If there's one thing you need to know about me, it is that I do not react well to being unnecessarily deprived of sleep. To say I turn into a snarling, red-eyed monster zombie is an understatement. At 5.50 this morning, I decided enough was enough. I turned on my phone next to the bed, and texted him the number of the doctor's surgery, plus "That is all I have to say". As we are such a modern couple, he picked up his mobile from his bedside table and responded "Ah. You're not talking to me then".

In a straw poll of a couple of friends and some friendly twitter peeps, I realise I am not alone in occasionally feeling like I need to sort out him indoors. A large proportion make all family appointments, which just happens to include those for their husband. Those who stay at home see it as a logical part of their role - after all it only takes two minutes. For me though, even if I managed to get over my telephobia and make the call, I ultimately know that trying to make an appointment for someone who works an hour away is tricky to say the least.

However, the overriding niggle is the fact that, ultimately I am not his mother, and I refuse to behave like one to a grown man. If only it were not having a directly negative effect on my sleep patterns... (before you suggest it, yes, I can still hear him from the spare room!)

This morning was the final straw. I have threatened withdrawal of marital favours until the appointment is made.

I'll keep you posted.

P.S. Christmas and New Year were lovely, and thank you to those of you asking - the office Christmas party was surprisingly enjoyable!

P.P.S. Mr Tin - I love you really. x


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