I have a great reason to be cheerful this week. We have a relocation to the South of England in the mix.

Over the Easter weekend, we will be moving to pastures new and reuniting as a family. This delights me on so many levels. It means the Royal British Legion despite their best efforts could not keep us down forever. It gives my husband and myself an opportunity to enjoy being a couple rather than working through a list of tasks. I think the opportunities for the children will be fantastic. What if one of them took up sailing and carried on Dad’s great love for the sea? I will be closer to London when exciting opportunities come my way as they do from time to time. I will be able to suggest a show in London without it seeming daft. We will be near my beloved sea which is so good for my body, heart and soul. I have needed a fresh start/kick up my immense bottom for some time and this will be a great catalyst to a good future.

Thinking about it, I loved living in the South of England. I left purely because my ex did me over emotionally and financially. That was 16 years ago!! I swore to my Dad that I would not stay put in Yorkshire but then I met my now husband and had 3 children and plans to return South went out of my mind.

I actually have butterflies with the excitement of it all. It still feels slightly unreal and I have not seen the new house yet so I hope it is as nice as my husband says it is. However, it does not really matter. What matters is leaving this terrible year behind us and starting afresh.

This is probably very arrogant but can I just say a big “Well done us!” for holding it together through a lot of stress. Yes we had screaming, rows, tears, depression but we are here and we are a family. Big thanks to Auntie you know who you are, my brother and lovely online friends who kept me hopeful with tweets, emails, blog comments and cards.

Writing my Dad’s memoirs I see his service number began with P for Portsmouth so I sense he had a very big hand in all this.

Feeling quite giddy.

Loads more reasons to be cheerful too but this one is the giant one!


My mum’s mum Sally Ann.

My mum Irene.

Dad’s mum Harriet.

Numbers of children – 7, 3 and 1

Numbers of grandchildren – 15, 3 and 3

One of these mums brought up her child whilst caring for her disabled mother.

One of these mums experienced extreme domestic violence.

Two of these mums struggled with depression.

All of these mums experienced poverty and discrimination.

Two of these mums did not get on very well.

Two of these mums were brilliant bakers.

All of these mums went on to see a little of the world.

And on Mothers’ Day, well you could say life is a beach.

Look into those eyes and seize the day. I will if you will.

The amazingly talented writer and woman that is Anna over at Adventures of an Ageing Matron has tagged me in this little bit of fun. Having looked at the questions posed, it may not be such fun but here goes nothing.

When you look in the mirror what do you see?

An unkempt and overweight woman in frumpy clothing. Particular things that make me want to hide include my stomach area and my teeth neglected during the post-natal depression period. On the positive side, I have a good skin and I like my brown eyes.

If you could choose one motto/mantra to live by what would it be?

Make memories – they are the only things that last.

Which era would you command a time capsule to transport you to?

Either the Twenties as would love to do the Charleston in one of those flapper dresses. Also the Fifties when rock and roll was new, when women had a clearer idea of what was expected of them and when you could wear that New Look with the cinched in waist and huge skirts.

What was your childhood ambition and have you fulfilled it?

I wanted to be a barrister partly because I liked Crown Court on the telly and partly because my Dad had worked with lawyers as a policeman and in his insurance career. I liked the magenta ribbons on court files and quite fancied myself in a wig and gown. I particularly liked the idea of standing up and spouting and everyone having to listen to me. I saw myself as a Defence barrister preventing miscarriages of justice.

I did study Law at Cambridge University (my finest hour perhaps). I went to Law School but by then I knew that I had no interest in making the rich richer which seemed to be what most lawyers were about. Also, my Dad said I would need a private income to pursue such a career and as I thought my prospects in the sex industry were limited and the family silver has being filched years ago by my older brother, I decided to fight for fairness in the charity sector.

If the world were to end tomorrow where would you want to be and what would be on your apocalypse menu?

I may well be back in Cambridge as the love affair with the city has never ended. If overseas, it would be on a balcony in the Pyrenees or in the mountains of the Auvergne.

I like so much food so it is difficult to choose.

Breakfast – scrambled eggs and smoked salmon with Buck’s Fizz

Lunch – a prawn mayonnaise baguette and a crisp white wine

Afternoon tea – the works with cucumber sarnies and scones with home-made jam and clotted cream

Dinner – scallops, lamb and raspberries. Drinks might include rum and Cointreau on the rocks.

Cocktails – of course!

When did you last change your sheets?

There is nothing more likely to make me change them than knowing I have to blog about it.

Now I have to set 11 questions and tag 11 bloggers

1. Do you prefer to be indoors or outdoors?

2. Housework – love or loathe?

3. What item would you love to find for a £1 in the charity shop?

4. Who inspires you?

5. What song or piece of music cheers you up?

6. Which country would you most like to visit?

7. What makes you a good enough mum?

8. What is the best advice you ever received?

9. What would make you give up blogging?

10. Which celebrity do you wish could disappear from our television screens?

11. You have a magic lamp with 3 wishes that can come true. What are those wishes?

Tagging @AutismMumma @CupcakeMumma @Dragonsflypoppy @knackeredhwife @GertieandGinger @Glasgow_Mummy @Redpeffer @KimberleyJTyler @goriami @Usthreebythesea @VicWelton

I am half hoping nobody reads this as I feel awful about keep going on and on about the tough stuff.

I know so many people are facing harder times but we are struggling a bit to keep upbeat all the time with this so-and-so ing redundancy situation.

We have both had redundancy situations in the past but always because of funding issues in the charities we worked for.  That is hard but not hurtful as in the current situation where the Royal British Legion have dumped my husband after so many years of loyal service and whilst recruiting other staff to do very similar roles (they would argue that point of course).

My husband has had two weeks of travelling up and down the UK trying to find work.  Interviews most days and sometimes twice a day.  No job offer and he is clearly struggling emotionally.  And he hates that.   He is not a person who is comfortable in sharing his feelings so they get bottled up and then express themselves in anger and impatience.

He is tired.  He is worried about finances.

The final straw came when we were told our car can only be put back on the road if we spend £1000 or more.  We need the car really to attend interviews.  Also it is my late Dad’s car and somehow that still matters to me.

I feel like I am walking on egg shells.

And I am a proud person who does not react well when I feel got at or put down.  To much like my late Mum in that regard.

Am I the most supportive wife in the world?  No – I have always been better at taking practical action to help rather than doing the “there, there” stuff.

Also when someone struggles to tell you how they feel, it is hard to know quite how to support them.

So I have put my efforts into trawling job sites and helping with job applications (quite a lot as it goes).

I am also trying to find bits of work for me to keep the wolf from the door.

There is also the underlying resentment that I was not listened to when I saw the warning signs that my husband would have been better to jump ship from the Legion months or years ago.  That makes me rotten I know but it is there and sometimes it is expressed by me in perhaps not the most ideal ways.

I have suggested my husband sees the GP.  He is probably depressed and maybe needs a little help for now.

How terrible of me who has experienced depression to not have a clue what to say or do to support someone in its grip.

We will be OK in the medium to long-term.  We have to hold onto that belief but sometimes it is hard to do.