One last note


I forgot to mention, Jake is doing incredibly well with potty training. More dry days than ever.

Who knew that bribing children would work.

I’m an idiot.




That shit cray


I’ve probably mentioned this before, but I am going to mention this again because this week it has gotten under my skin.

As you know, Mike and I work full-time; this is because we need the money, because we went to university, because we were not brought up to think that if we couldn’t be bothered, then someone else would provide for us. It’s tough; we have no money. I got payed last week and due to bills, I already have no money in my account. We have the nursery bill to pay on Friday which is almost double our rent… We didn’t choose it because of how much it cost, but when Jake’s last nursery close, it was the only one that could take him full-time. Don’t get me wrong, they are a fantastic nursery; they look after him so well and they have helped in his development in a way I could never have done alone- but they are expensive. So we have interviewed nannies to try to bring the cost down; but if it doesn’t then we are screwed. Mike had a job interview on Monday… but sadly he didn’t get it. That’s what is so terrible, he works so hard and he deserves the best, but we cannot keep going the way we are.

So you can imagine how pissed off I get when i know of people who are just popping out children so they don’t have to go out and work. I don’t get how this can be considered okay. Who on earth thinks that it’s okay for others to pay up just so they don’t have to face the difficulty of juggling children and work? Don’t misunderstand; if you cannot work, then fine, get a little help until you are back on your feet. Problem is, thanks to the government… This idea that we are entitled to sit back because someone else will help is becoming common. I don’t want the help; but i don’t want to have to stop working just because it’s making us worse off. This is true by the way- if I gave up work until Jake started going to primary school, we would get lots of help. Problem is, I don’t think that is the right way to live or to bring up a child.

I remember just after the London riots, a social worked explained the behavior of the children. She said ‘well because their parents are on benefits and never work, they expect everything else is free. They think that they are owed this because of the way they have been made to look at money.’ I mean what complete and utter crap! When you were little, apart from pocket-money and birthdays, since when have you thought that money was a right? When have you ever thought that you didn’t have to work? Some people do come from privileged backgrounds, and thus, have a slightly different upbringing, and I know that some can think along the same lines- that they will always be provided for. But that is only true of a few people i personally know of. It is not okay to think that money should just be given to you, that either your parents or someone else will just buy you stuff. I mean if that is how you think, then there is something wrong with you. I mean seriously wrong with you. We don’t do things in life for other people, our lives are for us. I didn’t go to university or have Jake just to please others. It’s what I wanted, so I live with the consequences, but yes it is a struggle. it is made worse when I am constantly surrounded by free loaders. If you feel like you should just be able to sit back and wait for your weekly income from everyone else, then stop having children. Take a good look in the mirror and sort your life out. Also, stop telling me that I should give up work- I love working. I love being a mum, but I couldn’t look at Mike in the face if he was off out to work every day whilst I just sat back.

I couldn’t do that to either of them. Mike works so very hard, he has taken on Jake and myself, he contributes- I wouldn’t have been able to get this far without him. So to just say, right that’s it I won’t work anymore, you do it all… well he wouldn’t stick around long. Who would? I am not saying all this because I want the extra help, I just want you to understand that this is not okay. If things don’t improve, I’m going to need to look at getting another job because I am so sick of just about getting through the month. What sometimes worries me is how some friends don’t get it either. But everyone is different. The world is different, and I suppose you could say that we are lucky that sometimes we can get the help if we need it.

I love my job- it gives me time out of the house and most importantly, I am working towards a wonderful career. Why on earth would I give that up? And you know me, I am desperate to have more children, I don’t want Jake to be an only child. Mike and I had to be realistic though- I can’t struggle like this again, we can’t struggle like this again. So perhaps that has to be our sacrifice… maybe we will adopt instead. There are so many children out there in need of a family. We shall see. at least I have Jake and Mike, some people will never have this. I am lucky in that Mike gets all this and we are going through this together. We have been living together for nearly six months now, and we still like each other 🙂

Maybe I am ranting for no reason. Maybe I am being a real bitch and a total hypocrite. All I know is, it is not okay to be having five or six children just to avoid the big wide world. People still say to me ‘oh university and Jake must have been very tough’. No- sometimes is got stressful, but it is nothing compared to working full-time. The feeling of utter guilt for wanting to do my own thing, to work hard for my own achievement. Oh god and the juggling, the endless juggling in case Jake needs collecting early, or late, or if he’s ill. It’s all so stressful and so bloody hard. And it might not all work out.

Right, I feel like that is enough of a rant I suppose. If I have annoyed you with what I have said… good. Bringing your kids up to think that someone else will give them everything it stupid.

Don’t forget to watch the rugby.


Eyes open


I have been kicked out of the sitting room because the football is on… And whilst it is one of the few teams I can normally watch and cheer for, tonight is not the night. My weeks appear to be getting longer and the weekends shorter. So I took the opportunity Mike offered and slipped off into a hot bath with a glass of wine and finished one of the best books I have read this year. I finally finished the Silver Linings Playbook; I wanted to read it before I saw the film (you know me) and I could not put it down. It’s a beautiful story, based on reality and more than anything else, I thought it told a wonderful story about the way someone’s mind can work. It’s scary the way we can think, how an event for someone can have a totally different effect on someone else.

It got me thinking about the events I’ve gone through. I thought about how they made me feel and I wondered how the people that went through it with me were affected by it, by the choices I made or didn’t make. It almost made me feel selfish. How often do we think about how things might truly affect someone else? Also, sometimes what we are going trough is very self consuming, so perhaps you can be forgiven for not thinking of someone else.

Anyway…. Today was Jake’s second totally dry day (he’s not an alcoholic) and I have I mean we have been totally stupid. Bribery is how we have managed this and it is the only reason we have succeeded. Oh and sticker charts as well as the wonderful work from the nursery. So fingers crossed it keeps going! He has been so wonderful the last few weeks; I know I can moan but oh god I love him. He’s perfect. He’s really clever at the moment too which makes us look pretty incompetent… Which we are but there you are.

Right, I’m on to my next book about a dead wife that comes back to haunt her husband. Getting some ideas in for the future.


A taste of the good life


On Thursday I got to help my dad out at his shop. He had his wine tasting evening and as you can imagine, I got pretty excited. Wine is friend and I say that in a non-alcoholic sort of way. The difference is the wine that my dad promotes will leave you feeling like you’ve been drinking velvet/gold/silk rather than like you’re drinking vinegar. Don’t get me wrong, sometimes you can buy the most delicious wines from supermarkets, but what my dad offers is more than that. It’s like going to visit a dear old friend who’s thoughtfully put everything you love in a glass.

The wonderful thing you get is the service too. My dad couldn’t do as great a job without his wife to be Molly. They are a partnership, a team, best friends, and you get all of this and more by visiting their shop. It’s not just the thought into the wine that comes through when you go in, but the thought into the food too. Every last thought has been taken care of, Molly has an eye and the knowledge to serve you the most delicious thing in the world, but she’ll get you to try a million new things expanding your paler to new levels.

Thursday for me was an eye opener. I’ve always known that what dad and Molly have in the shop is successful because they are always so busy; they’ve also built up a strong, steady stream of customers who have been going to them for 10 years solidly. But Thursday it was more than that. It was a wine tasting, but not for just a bunch of people they’ve gotten to know over a few years. It was a wine tasting for their best friends, for their family. I felt like I was being witness to an intimate family gathering. There was gentle fun being poked, sharing of jokes, sharing of what has been going on and what people had been up to. Everyone knew everyone. There was also some questionable comedy coming from my dad (you know what it’s like when parents try to be funny) but it was very much the case of a family coming together to appreciate one of the most classic things about Italy, sorry two things, wine and food. Now I love my dad to bits but, you know as kids will do, I don’t always listen to what he says. Our family has the ability to talk… A lot. But you can imagine my surprise when, as my dad began to talk about the first product, the room went silent. Everyone was hanging on to his every word, it was the most surreal thing I have ever seen. Not that he doesn’t deserve it, what dad and Molly don’t know about wine and food is not worth knowing. It’s just as his child, I have a tendency to think ‘I’ll listen to the bits I want’ rather than to everything. Shameful I know.

It was the best night I’ve had in ages. I got to interact with a wonderful group of people, try food that comes from where I was brought up, and tried wine that I could happily drink non stop. But best of all I got to spend time with my dad and Molly. I think that’s why they are so successful, because the things that I feel when seeing them and working with them, that strong bond, comes through when they meet and great every person that has ever set foot in that shop. It doesn’t matter that they don’t know you, you’ll walk away feeling like you have managed to catch up with a long lost friend and been given a meal created by gods.

The wines they served on Thursday are from Lake Gada. I have never been there but after tasting what I tasted, Mike needs to start saving. This is where you see the hard work that dad and Molly put into the shop. Their work doesn’t stop when the door closes. They go to Italy probably about 6 or 7 times a year and some people think its holidays. It isn’t. They go to meet producers, potential suppliers, potential locations to take tours, even potential future locations for future plans. They don’t stop. This was evident on Thursday because they had gone above and beyond to think carefully about the wines and the food to serve to best compliment, to best promote what they had discovered. It’s not just a learning session for the wine tasters, but dad and Molly too because it allows them to see what customers want, what they are looking for in a wine, in cheese, in salami, in everything. It means the world to them, and the people that walk into the shop want to be part of the moments that are created through their hard work and their passion for the job.

Anyway, it’s all food for thought isn’t it. You should go and see them though, tell them I sent you.. Maybe don’t actually 🙂 but go. It’s like finding a pocket of Italy in a town that appears to be full of… Well not what they can offer you.
They have a website, actually I believe they have two, have a click.

They have a twitter too: @maxandmolly2011

I’ve decided what I loved more than being a part of the wine tasting on Thursday. For me it was like returning home. I miss Italy a lot more than people think, I remember a lot. For me that’s where my heart is. And I know that is how dad and Molly feel. So go see them and have a go at experiencing that feeling, there isn’t much else like it.

Anyway, house work is calling. Haha who am I kidding 🙂


P.S they have definitely not payed me to say this, when you go in tell them I need to retry that delicious Lambrusco… And every other bottle of wine they are currently stocking.


True love’s kiss


I had an interesting conversation with a friend recently regarding a kiss that she had. She described the feeling post kiss- weak and shaken, like the kiss had said all the things that they had not been able to describe. It got me thinking about the kisses that I have had and what sort of feeling they have left me with. I must say, this is a very quick way of sending yourself down a major shame spiral. I don’t known about anyone else but me personally… well as Mike would say, I have kissed a lot of animals. In my defence, i didn’t think that they were animals at the time otherwise I don’t think the kiss might have happened… well I like to think not but I am sure that you might beg to differ. Today,as I walked to work in sub-zero temperatures at a ridiculous time in the morning, I thought about the first kiss I ever had with Mike. The first thing that happened was that a grin the size of… well the world spread across my face. This is not just because of the feeling that it left me with, but also because of the way that the kiss happened in. You see Mike is my first ever proper date… EVER. We were both working at the Mark Cross INN at the time, and I had just finished my shift. He text me pretending to be annoyed because I had not stayed at the end of the bar to have a drink; we began texting and eventually started talking about our current love lives or lack there of. So we admitted who we had our eye on, which of course happened to be each other. Mad hey? So he asked me out on a date, and I had to ask permission because it was on a Sunday night and I had school the next day… I was very honest at one point in my life apparently.

So we made plans to go to the cinema to go and see the Departed (awesome film by the way) but we had to wait an hour before the film. I bet you are thinking that it might have been an awkward moment. Well I can tell you now we were both pretty annoyed that we had to go in to watch the film. It was the easiest conversation I have ever had. After the film, he drove me home. This is where it gets a bit funny. I wouldn’t let him walk me to my front door because i was so worried that my parents would open the door and start taking the piss. Pretty embarrassing if you ask me, he thought it was hilarious. So I thought, right I need to save this somehow and lighten the mood. So I extended my hand for a hand shake and said thank you for such a lovely evening. Now this could have gone one of two ways; either he was going to shake it in an awkward manner and drive off and never talk to me again, or he would shake my hand, smile and pull me into a kiss. The later happened. It was like a rocket went off somewhere inside me, it was soft, hard, fast, slow, amazing yet kind of scary… and as the kiss was heating up… Mike pulled away and started giggling because he claimed he felt like the person on the radio was talking to him. I left soft of smiling but a little freaked out.

The point of that story? I can remember every part of that night and the moment of the kiss, and every time I think of it I feel the same way I did then… like something amazing is about to happen. What kiss can you remember every single bit of? What kiss makes you feel exactly the same way you felt the first time round?

To be fair, I say all this but the kiss that ‘no matter what happens I will forever remember’ is the very first one Jake gave me after the first time he told me he loved me. That is priceless.

Have a lovely evening reminiscing.


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