About Me

I am a novelist and a journalist. I have two children a son born in 2001 and a daughter born in 2004. We live in London.

Thursday, 28 June 2012

In homage to Nora Ephron



Things I won't miss When I'm dead:

Being Tired
Insomnia
Traffic Jams
Airport Security
Wrinkles
Dry skin 
My waistline
Daytime TV
Whiskey
Drunk people
Supermarkets


What I will Miss:

My kids
Luke
Sunshine
Sand
Sea
Long, hot baths
Reading a good book
Parties
Friends
Dinner with friends
Laughing
Crying
Hugging

Nora Ephron's List

What would you miss or not miss?

Wednesday, 27 June 2012

The Cost of Children

This pinged into my inbox this morning, from an American early education website. I was particularly struck by the statistic that says %82 of those surveyed who don't have children want them and  the one that says you lose, on average, one and half close friends when you have young children. I'm not sure I lost close friends because of having kids, although it's true to say you do make new close friends, those friendships that strike up because you have children the same age. 91% say that having children under 10 wrecked their sex lives and %60 had a lot more sex after the kids left home. That's a long time to wait!!!!  I wonder how many of those surveyed blame the kids for their wrecked sex lives or would they would have lost interest anyway as the years rolled by?  Also I'm quite surprised that only %13 of pregnant and new mothers admitted to feeling depressed, that seems low. After all, new mothers are exhausted, perhaps overwhelmed, stuck at home, given up work, feeling hormonal and out of their depth.

My children are 8 and 11 now, and I feel as though we are out of the early childhood years, the endless sleepless nights and early mornings feel like one big blur.  I never really stop to think about how much two children are costing us, I know it's a substantial amount, and will increase as they get older. Anyway see what you think, and whether any of this resonates with you.


Created by: EarlyChildhoodEducation.comCostly Kids
Created by: EarlyChildhoodEducation.com

Thursday, 21 June 2012

Life Goes On

The strangest, most uplifting, and devastating things happen, just when you least expect them to: Some dear friends of mine lost their first baby a year ago – she died a few minutes after being born. We were all distraught; it was just so awful, almost unheard of these days. The mother conceived again, and her second baby was born two weeks ago. She came three weeks early and was born on the exact same day, within three hours of their daughter who had died a year before. We saw her on Sunday and she's absolutely beautiful and apparently never cries. I love this story, it’s as though she was helping her parents, by marking the sad anniversary with her birth.

And death: A friends’ sister, aged 47, died a few days ago, possibly from complications with diabetes. Another friend, a nurse, told me about a motorbike accident that happened outside the church she was attending on Sunday.  She rushed out to help and while the man’s wife looked on, she attempted to resuscitate, him – but unfortunately it was too late. He wasn’t wearing a helmet; would he still be alive if he had been? He had literally just left the house. My friend says it won’t leave her, this sad, surreal, experience, she wonders if she should stop talking about it. Another friend's daughter, aged 9 has died from a long battle with leukemia, I am going to the memorial today.

Life goes on and on, and then bang, something happens, that jolts you out of your stupor. Friends you least expect to split up do  - at least four friends have told me they have separated in the last few months. The other day, my husband alerted me to the fact that we don’t have house contents insurance. It immediately made me think:  What would happen if we suddenly lost everything in a fire? What would I do if my computer was stolen with my new novel on it? Or if the leaky ceiling in the shower room collapsed? There is just so much to worry about and think about - car insurance, house insurance, contents insurance, cat insurance, private health insurance, and all because we have to wonder what if? What if? It just seems so unlikely until it happens to you.

This is a sponsored post

Monday, 18 June 2012

Brit Mums Live

I'm one of the panel speaking in the Path to Publishing forum, on Friday at the Brit Mum Conference, and am suddenly, this Monday morning, am wired with nerves. I'll only be talking for 5 minutes, but at the moment, I imagine it will feel like the longest five minutes I've ever spent. To put it in perspective, five minutes is only a minute longer than my poached egg takes to cook, but that four minutes can tick by quite slowly sometimes. On the other hand there is so much to say, how could I possibly squeeze it all into five minutes? A conference of 500 women - perhaps a few men? It's bound to be noisy. I bet most of the women know each other, (at least read each other's blogs) it's like going to a party where you have met the host, but none of the guests. I met a few bloggers (Was it two years ago?) at a bloggers lunch for Bistow gravy, and a few the year before for Disney kids channel, and my neighbour is a blogger, but I'm not sure she's going.  I'm sure it will be fun though. I imagine a huge noisy space, hundreds of women sipping tea, chatting, laughing, gossiping, sneaking in a call to the babysitter, and wheeling home on a high! Come and say hello to me please and if you're nervous check in at the Butterflies group, four bloggers who are on hand to chat.




Friday, 1 June 2012

Friday

My daughter, aged 8 stood up in the bath yesterday, skinny as a pin and declared that she was fat. Yes FAT. She said she needed to go on a diet. I was so shocked and saddened that I could only say NO. No please do not go on a diet, you don't need to. "You're skinny," I wailed.
"I'm not skinny like Christianna," she said.
"You're a sports girl.You run and jump and do gymnastics." 
"But my tummy is big."
"It isn't."

And so it went on me blaming skinny models, girls at school, anyone but myself. This morning, I realise with horror that she has probably picked up on this from ME. I am constantly on a diet, constantly remarking that I'm fat. I've been on the Dukan Diet for over a year; I weigh myself every morning. I have to stop sending out this message. 

On another note, I saw this deal which is to get three copies of Junior National Geographic for £4. Can't go wrong.