I arrived at the Savoy on London in a lovely car courtesy of Tesco.

A man came up to the driver and asked who his passenger was. He did not know having scrubbed my name off his white-board earlier. I told the man my name and he asked “Are you Red Carpet?” I was almost tempted to say that I was and have the red carpet moment but thought better of it and was driven direct to the door of the Savoy.

I was rushed in and there were so many people and cameras around.

I was greeted warmly and directed to the champagne reception. As I hit the top of the stairs, I came across other bloggers checking out the table plan. I had one of my “I don’t fit in” wobble moments so went into the champagne room to see if anybody wanted to play with me. I spotted a lady on her own so started there. What a treat. She was really friendly and shared her story of motherhood so openly. She helped me feel at ease and we had fun spotting celebrities as they arrived. I was so thrilled when she said “I wish we were at the same table for lunch but I bet we aren’t” You mean somebody actually enjoyed my company – this day was amazing already.

We were called to lunch where I knew I was going to be sitting next to Actually Mummy. I have never really got to know Helen before so it was wonderful to have a little time to get to know the woman behind the blog.

As we found table 9, Jason Merrells came up with his companion Emma and introduced himself in a friendly fashion. Jason plays Declan in Emmerdale. As I took my seat, I spied the place name next to mine was Sue Cleaver the actress who plays Eileen Grimshaw in Coronation Street. She arrived with her lovely mum. Natalie who plays Alicia in Emmerdale and Nadia who played Zainab in EastEnders also were suddenly joining our table along with their lovely guests.

I have to say that the celebrities were so not up themselves and so warm with us non-celebs. They shared some personal information and also showed a keen interest in learning more about the blogging world. We had a very pleasant lunch including things I love such as guinea fowl and a very rich chocolate dessert. Needless to say the wines went down very well although I was careful to keep drinking water too.

Every so often I would glance around and see famous faces including Brian McFadden and Vogue sitting alongside bloggers. I did not even realise just how many celebrities attended until I checked out the highlights video later.

It is funny but because you see such faces on the telly you did sort of feel comfy with them already if that makes any sense at all. I had a fun moment with Nadia popping up and waving as we could barely see each other due to the huge floral display on the table. She took it well and giggled along with me.

I am not going to say too much about the awards ceremony itself as I am hoping you will watch it on Sunday on Channel 4. I can promise that you will be moved and inspired by the Mums of the Year. Check out some highlights.


I loved hearing Sam Bailey sing and also seeing how very human and ordinary she is whilst of course being totally extraordinary.

At the end of the evening, Boyzone almost made me miss my train but there was not way I was leaving until I had seen them perform their songs.

I had a car waiting to whisk me back to Kings Cross. As I raced down the platform, I saw Natalie waving at me as if we were old friends. Such a lovely lady inside and out.

I felt so upbeat after my day out and seeing my children racing down the platform to greet me on my return was the icing on the cake.

I was at the Savoy Hotel in London on Sunday for the Tesco Mum of the Year Awards.

I was nervous about Sunday and not because it was the Savoy. The good thing about going to Cambridge University early in life is it does sort of get you used to using the right cutlery, knowing what menus mean and so forth. My issue as ever was how shy I feel in social situations. That’s OK if you have a safe bet in the room who you know will talk to you. I knew one person who would be kind but you can hardly dump yourself on someone you barely know as some sort of clingy person.

However, there was no way I was going to miss such a glittering affair and I was even more convinced when I learned both Boyzone and Sam Bailey would be performing.

It did look like it would not happen though.

My husband headed towards home on Friday night only to break down just outside Portsmouth. He hired a car to ensure he got here and drove through the night after waiting 3 hours for a recovery vehicle.

I went for a hair appointment last week so the two inches of grey was removed and I was sporting a new colour and cut.

I even went so far as to do a skincare routine for possibly the first time ever.

I bottled make-up for fear I would look like a clown. Where do other women learn about these things?

I wore a dress via Charity Shop Designs that skimmed the huge tummy and banged on the statement necklace that my late mum and dad bought me.

A dash to Peacocks had provided flats, tights, support knickers and bra for under about £20 quid.

I got as far as Doncaster for my connection on Sunday morning to see the Kings Cross train was delayed. My heart sank when it was announced that it was cancelled.

Years ago, I got a Cosmopolitan Magazine Woman of Achievement nomination and made it only for the last 5 minutes of the fancy do at a London hotel. Was history repeating itself?

I was freezing too having decided that I did not want to be encumbered by a coat or jacket.

I threw myself on the mercy of the next train.

Tesco has provided a car from Kings Cross so I had to liaise with them by text about the delay.

There was huge sense of relief as I threw myself into the car and knew I would be making it the Mum of the Year Awards after all.

My word of the week is separation.

I am separated from my husband after 16 years of being together in good times and bad. There are pros and cons to this situation but it is a separation all the same.

I am separated from my children not being up to date and down with the kids. I don’t understand the attraction of video games remotely and hate having to pretend I do. I remember my own Mum struggling to keep up with things like automatic washing machines and video recorders. So shoot us!

I am separated from my parents through death. I know this applies to so many people but I don’t like it. Not one bit.

I am separated from my college friends who all got fed up of me along the way. The one I do have was never a friend back in the day which shows just how odd life can be. Meanwhile I miss the others and want them back.

My oldest school friend is living in Spain and I do not believe I will ever see her again.

Today, I saw a photo of my birth family posted on Facebook. Can it be said right now that I am in my humble opinion the absolute spit of my maternal grandmother now deceased and never met? She never knew I existed. I feel that and then know that is not allowed when you are adopted. She had real grandchildren and I am a nothing.

I am separated from what I think I was meant to be. I used to be good at things. I was seen as exceptionally bright. Now I spend my days hating school runs and the drudgery of housework. Where did I go? I am occasionally through blogging and other things shown glimpses of what I was meant to be but they are only glimpses and in some ways just taunt me showing me what I could have been and am not.

I feel I live my life in a constant state of “This time next year I will be something” a bit like Del Boy and his “This time next year we will be millionaires”.

There you go and upbeat post from Weighty Katie.

I am not down as such.

I just feel a bit fed up and want to get out the various frustrations out of my system. Blogging always helps me deal with my feelings and sometimes work out what to do next too.

I am miffed that having helped loads with the great job search for my husband, he has started the new life but myself and the children are left behind. I know it has to be this way but I still don’t like it much particularly when I think about all the adventures waiting for us once we can manage to get moved.

He has come home for weekends. It is good to see him but also feels odd as I am already developing my own ways of doing things. I sense we are both less patient with the other person’s flaws having lived without them for the first time in many years. This may be good in the long run but that impatience is hard to contend with when dealing with limited hours together.

There is also that bit that always spoils Christmas Day a little that there seems to be so much resting on it. You have planned and looked forward to it so you have to make it extra special regardless of realities like not feeling well, having a fall or whatever. Plus we have all the practical things to discuss and sort out.

I am also fed up that no matter how much housework I do, it mushrooms at such a speed and needs doing all over again. I try to put systems in place but to be honest I don’t really want to do housework every day but know that it is vital to keep on top of things. I still can’t work out why the woman all too often ends up with this as her role despite others living in the house. I am well aware that makes me a bad wife and mother in some people’s eyes but I am probably at core a very selfish person.

The grief thing keeps coming up particularly as I go through a lot of Mum and Dad’s things as I attempt to declutter knowing a move is coming up. I am alright. Life goes on. Time does ease things a bit but there is this angry voice inside that says loud and clear that I do not like life as much without my parents in it. It feels like crossing an ocean and realising there is no way back.

I am getting older. I have not done much with my life really and that frustrates me. I get annoyed at myself because if somebody is to change things, it will have to me but sometimes I can’t even remember what my hopes and dreams were or are now.

Even blogging is under question for me right now. What is the point bleating on? It makes me feel better but does it actually help me move forward. Then I question why am always wanting to strive and move forward. Perhaps I should just learn a level of self-acceptance.

Fundamentally, I wish life came with a manual because sometimes I really don’t get it at all.

And yes I am OK – not depressed – just frustrated and a bit sad about some things.

I am feeling in a bit of a muddle this week. I guess it is the mixture of quite enjoying being my own boss whilst my husband is away combined with impatience to get our new life started. I am so ready for a new adventure!

So what is making me smile this week?

1. My husband came home for the weekend. He arrived at about 2am and I had locked him out by accident! So the reunion was postponed till about 7am. He forgave me immediately which I do think makes him a bit of a saint to be honest. It was lovely to spend time together again and to enjoy his cooking and one of his world famous salads. It was easy to let him go back on Sunday knowing that he had returned and not run off with some amazing woman and that the future is bright.

2. I got glowing reports for my daughter and youngest son at their parents’ evenings. My son is very gifted but also comic and sociable. All good. My daughter has grown in self-belief and was described as a “high-flyer” with literacy to A-Level standard on occasion. Not bad for a 9 year old!

3. I am decluttering and finding that I am able to let things go that I have been clinging on to since Mum and Dad died. They had their lives and good ones. I am not letting them down by saying goodbye to some of their possessions.

4. The sunshine is here so much and I love seeing the children and animals enjoy it. It was great to eat out at the weekend on the patio.

5. My husband is looking at some potential houses for us over the next couple of days – keep everything crossed!