Monthly Archives: January 2011


We are currently having (and have been having for what feels like an eternity) an extension built, and new kitchen put in . The plan was to have it finished for Christmas. To hark back to school days in summary of this ever being the case. . . “CHINNY RECKOOON!” and to put it bluntly . . .


The new kitchen will make everything in my life ok again. The new kitchen  will inspire me to cook only fresh home-made meals of health and loveliness. The new kitchen: from which I shall emerge a vision of 1950s house-wife glamour as my husband arrives home from  a hard day’s work. Spatula in hand, crisp floral pinny cinched around my size 8 waist (MY fantasy!) delicious odours wafting from behind me and child well-behaved and immaculately groomed waiting happily at the new kitchen table for tea. I shall kiss said husband tenderly, flit over effortlessly to pull him a chair out and crack open a nice cold beer for him. Probably giving the tea a quick stir and a taste en-route. Sigh. 

The current reality is that I stagger through the front door, knackered after a day of dealing with teenage angst, arms filled with baby/shopping/handbag etc, and am greeted by various strangers bearing various power tools and asking  “you brewing up love?” Aaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhh!

To make a bottle, a brew, or get tea ready at the moment, it is imperative to don hat and scarf as there’s no insulation and it’s freeeeeeezing. You can literally see your breath. Then the following must occur:

  1. Pull down the door handle.
  2. Kick the door very hard approximately 2 inches under said handle in order for it to open.
  3. Step over the plethora of planks, tools and ladders to get to the oven or hob.
  4. Wipe over the oven or hob as required due to the blanket of brick-dust and refuse that has landed on it during the 10 seconds since I last wiped it.
  5. Kettle and microwave are accessed by ducking under a cobweb of electrical wires, stepping over the gap in the floor, and being very careful not to knock them off the workmate bench they’re currently balanced on.
  6. Getting whatever you need done as quickly as possible so you don’t catch pneumonia or breathe in too much brick-dust.

 I am SO sick and tired of the begrimed no-mans-land hell that is my current kitchen. I keep looking at the catalogue. It calls to me like a beacon of high-gloss delectable kitcheny gorgeousness,  and flops open automatically at the page with the units we’ve ordered on it. It is my pornography.

And the cherry on the frickin cake? It would seem that the BESTEST, most exciting, stimulating place to be if you’re my one year old daughter, is this on-going building site. There is apparently nothing more fun than toddling amongst the live wires and power tools, clapping, laughing and stomping and stomping, because the temporary floor boarding just makes the best sound. All the while my other half is beaming down with pride at her, convinced that this is an indication she’ll grow up to be an electrical engineer. (?!)

God of home improvements – give me strength.

Next step – sink and remaining few functional units ripped out.

I think I’ll just go and rock quietly in a corner for a while. Ta ta x


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Giving the finger . . .

Have you ever noticed how kids have the uncanny knack of ruining a moment? Sometimes it’s funny, sometimes it’s annoying, sometimes it’s MORTIFYINGLY embarrassing, but always, the timing is superb. Why, only this evening, not ten minutes ago, Grace and I were in the throws of the bedtime routine. Bathed, talced, jammied and gro-bagged,  we were snuggling on the big squidgey beany chair – lights-a-low-  (I’m setting a scene here) and I’m giving her a bed-time bottle. Nestled in the crook of my arm she looks sleepily up at me as she sucks.  I get all gooey at those big blue eyes and, feeling motherly, start to softly sing her a lullaby. Grace slowly and deliberately inserts her index finger up my left nostril. I can’t lean back far enough to un-insert and my hands are tied. Best just soldier on with the singing. A now very nasal-y rendition of rock-a-bye baby would appear to be very funny to her, and we both get the giggles.

A few weeks ago I bumped into a woman I used to work with.  Everyone struggled to live up to her perfect, earth-motherly, organic, mung-beany, fair-tradey, recyley standards. You know the type: Look like they’re MADE of frigging hemp, say “ya” a lot, and just raise their eyebrows and speak volumes with their silence when you admit you didn’t  breast feed till they were two, or (shock horror) you sometimes give them JARS not home-made food. (Don’t get me wrong. Nothing wrong with the earth mother stuff and all it encompasses.  I know many mothers that do it and do it wonderfully well – but don’t drive a massive jock-off four-wheel drive and fly for several luxury holidays a year!)

“Daaarling” Mwah mwah (air kisses) “O M G you so suit the baby weight – you look radiant!”

Bitch. I look like a tramp that’s been dragged through a hedge backwards and she knows it. Her daughter stands waiting patiently and looking immaculate. Mine  has copious amounts of Petite Filous smeared down her top, snot in her hair, and is sporting mittens that say “love” and “hate” across the knuckles (my lovely husband’s sense of humour.)

“She is divine!” continues Bitchy Bitch McBitcherson. “Are you attachment parenting?” 

Eh? Am I whatting?  “Oh God, ya!” I find myself saying. “Attachment parenting . . .  absolutely!” (Memo to me – must google that at some point.)

“SO rewarding isn’t it? Can I?” She stretches her arms out to have a hold of Grace. I momentarily worry that the waft of essential oils spewing forth may give her a rash, but hand her over none the less.   

“BUGGER BUGGER BUGGER” shouts my baby girl and smacks hemp woman full  in the face. In my struggle to get her back, my  shopping bag splits and out spill my Pot Noodles and Stu’s Lager  . Oh bollocks.

Yes indeed, the wee ones have grand timing. Grace can sloppily fill her nappy at the most inappropriate moments (Great Aunties 100th birthday when  the Mayor held her for a photo op’ springs to mind) She has marched happily into the room waving a box of my Tampons when the in-laws have been round, and she decided the sentimental bit in her naming ceremony was THE best time to show-case her new raspberry blowing skills.

Maybe we should take a leaf out of a baby’s book and care a bit less?  Bless ’em x


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Things I wish I could do. . .

As my blogger friend Ghostwritermummy put it on her list this week – this could kind of go a few ways. Serious, silly, emotional etc. She, quite rightly, plumped for being honest. My last blog entry was a very emotional one to write, so for this one -although honest- I’ve plumped for silly. So here’s my second contribution to the wonderful Katetakes5 Listography, with 5 things I wish I could do:

1 – Actually punch the celebrities I listed for last weeks enrty “5 celebrities I’d like to punch

2 – Contact juggling! Yeah! A-la David-Bowie-as-the-Goblin-King in The Labyrinth. It’s just SO cool. I’ve tried a couple of times (granted both of them whilst pissed at  festivals) and just looked like a tool that couldn’t hold onto a plastic ball.

The Goblin King – The only man to make leggings and a mullet good!

(If you don’t know what it is check this guy out . . . “click!” )


 4 – Work the new super spandangly, mega stupendous, Hi-def, back-lit, LED TV without my husbands help.

5 – Be able to tell the difference between the new  super spandangly, mega stupendous, Hi-def, back-lit, LED TV and the old one. Apart from on the bank statement.

 GOD I’m deep!


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I Remember . . .

I remember being held in your arms on the landing , looking out the window at the moon whilst you sang me a lullaby. I sing that same lullaby to Grace now.

I remember that you always had a ‘Mr Men’ sticking plaster. Those plasters cured many a grazed knee and dried many a tearful eye.

I remember stubbornly climbing a tree in a strop and the patient hours you spent trying to talk me down.

I remember when you used to get me to play the piano in front of your friends. I’d always put up a fuss but secretly enjoyed it (but you knew that, didn’t you.)

I remember sitting on the edge of your bed and watching you get ready for a night out and thinking how glamorous my Mummy is.

I remember your temper! When Dad wouldn’t put his newspaper down when you were arguing, so you set fire to it!

I remember when I was a teenager, my male friends ringing the house phone to talk to you because they all thought your voice was sexy.

I remember your visits to me in Bolton and how much my university friends liked you.

I remember you making me swap my dog poo bag from a Netto’s to a Marks and Spencer’s one (in case the neighbours saw!)

I remember when you put a long red velvet curtain on like a cape in a dry cleaners in order to get the “Two for One” deal on garments only.

I remember you teaching me to put make-up on properly.

I remember my brother and I finding a black and white picture of you when you were about 20 (below) and both being gobsmacked at how beautiful you looked. It’s so easy to forget your Mum was sassy and young once.

I remember you asking for a fork in MacDonald’s and being MORTIFIED!

I remember the smell of your perfume.

I remember you teaching me to knit! I still use the purple bag we made. And to read the Tarot cards. But neither of us saw this coming.

I remember you dancing to the Kaiser Chiefs at my wedding.

I remember all those times I pushed your hugs away when I was upset “Don’t make a fuss Mum!” I’d give anything for one of those hugs now.

I remember your absolute bafflement in watching Reeves and Mortimer with me once.

I remember when I was 17 and couldn’t choose between two boys I was seeing. You advise was “Darling you don’t just have one hat for every occasion.”

I remember the night I had Grace. Afterwards feeling so sorry for myself as you lived so  far away and were too ill to visit. Then a few hours later waking in my hospital bed to the sound of your voice behind the curtain “Are you with the Doctor Elizabeth?” I thought for a minute I was dreaming, “Mum?” Many tears followed and you were Graces first ever visitor. I should have known nothing would stop you!

I remember your dignity and your sense of humour in facing your illness, and your bravery in facing death.

I remember exactly this time a year ago saying my final goodbye, and thanking you for being my Mum.

Grace has one hell of a Guardian Angel.

Miss you xxx


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Pure Plagiarism!

Tonight’s blog is pure plagiarism – from my infant-self. I was going through some of the stuff my Mum had kept from when I was little and found an exercise book from primary school entitled “Stories, By Elizabeth King (that’s me) Form 3” Now, honest to God – I am about to copy, for your reading pleasure, the first story from my book word for word. Exactly as my mini-self had written it all those years ago. I’d be very interested to know what you think because – quite frankly, if I’d have been my teacher I’d be drafting in a child psychologist and doing some SERIOUS analysing.

(Either that or I was a child genius.)

Without further ado. . . Ladies and Gentlemen . . . I give you . . .

“My Wedding”

By an iddy biddy me.

“Today I went to get married. I didn’t were a very nice dress and not very nice shoes and I did not brush my hair eether becouse I was so ecsited. My shoes were purely white. My dress was a minny dress and was a creamy sort of white. It was not all strate but the top was strate and the bottom was all frilly. Also there was a bit of lace at the top. My husband looked nice. He had on a bow ti and his dinner jacket. He put his false legs on (???!) and trousers that were black with 10 red spots and 11 green spots and black shoes that were shiney with white lacess too. I wore a top hat that was black aswell but he hated my ring.

(It gets worse!)

When we got half way across the church I began to srink. All the ghosts, monsters wiches and devells and vampires ran off because they could not stand the sight of me. So did my husband. I shrank and shrank untill I was as small as a germ. Wen I stopped srinking I said in a high and sqeaky voice “OH NO!” I said this because I had seen one big enourmos ghost and he said in a deep voice “hello.” I was terefied but it was only my husband not a ghost, and as he said “hello” he sucked me into his brain. It was absolootly horrabul. In fact I wanted to get out but I could not. I sat down in the brain and cried and cried and cried my eyes out of my head. But the good thing was that they did not fall out of my head. I would not be happy even if a clown came to cheer me up.

Then I said “this will not do” and stood up. My husband sneezed and I flew down out of his mowth and out of his brain. I went “weeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee” all the way down. I landed on some soft grass and grew and grew back to my normal size. Me and my husband went home and turned the telly on because I wanted to wach the news on ITV. (WTF??) The news man said there was only one dragon left in the world and it was in danger.I decided to save him but before I did I turned the telly off.

That was the Day I Got Married”

So there you have it. I can promise you that apart from quotation marks, nothing has been altered. Lucky my husband didn’t read this before we tied the knot, eh? I’d probably still be single! (In my defence though, I obviously had some incredible foresight as I can confirm that my actual wedding dress wasn’t a million miles away from the description. And also – a lot of the contents of my husband brain is indeed “horrabul”)

Like this post? Check out the sequel –


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“Water birth, please!”

So I suppose the time has come for an explanation of my username “Waterbirthplease” which kind of speaks for itself, but in an ironic way, believe me! Many experienced mothers whilst I was pregnant told me not to bother with a birth plan, but I was keen to do everything properly and knowing best, promptly ignored them. A birth plan I wanted, so a birth plan I produced. There’s something however in actually putting your wishes into writing that – in my head anyway – kind of cemented the notion that that was what WILL and MUST actually happen. I’m sure that a lot of Mums reading this will not be surprised to learn that it pretty much went out the window. Oh and I had such ideals! How impressed I thought the midwives and doctors would be when they see the care, effort and research I had put into it! So when my waters broke, off we toddle to the hospital, my husband and I (surprisingly
calmly it has to be said) an immaculately packed and repacked and repacked again suitcase in one hand, and the all important birth plan clutched in the other. Thank goodness I have had the forethought to inform the medical staff on how to deliver my baby, thinks I, as we wait to be examined. However . . . no contractions, no pain, no nothing. Blood pressure and temperature fine, baby it would seem, staying put. So off we go home again with instructions to ring up straight away if any change soccur, or in 24 hours if nothing happens.

Nothing happened.

I am told upon ringing the hospital back that I will need to come in at 8am the following morning to be induced. I hang up and stand staring a bit numb. Induced? That isn’t in my birth plan. I don’t know how that affects what is in my birth plan. Can I still have my water birth? I HAVE to have my water birth. I have a mental picture of my beautiful new daughter floating up towards me from the water, an angelic chorus playing softly in my head, an emotional husband gently mopping the brow of my freshly flushed glowing new-mother face as I scoop my delicate bundle from the aqueous pool of calm.

Here are some of the things I had on my lovely plan:

•    Water birth please (you’ve probably gathered this one by now!)
•    Low lighting
•    Only those absolutely necessary present.
•    I shall provide my own music (??!!)
•    Immediate Skin to skin
•    No episiotomy.
•    No drugs.

What I actually ended up with was:

•    Loads of drugs
•    An episiotomy
•    A brightly lit theatre with legs akimbo and the entire cast of scrubs faffing about down there
•    No music!

It all started to go a bit pear shaped from the word go really, when the nurse couldn’t get a needle in my hand. It would seem that I have veins smaller than the atom and it took two nurses, a doctor, and then finally an anaesthetist to get the flaming thing in. Then the gas and air. (Homer Simpson moment. . . “MMmmmm…gas and air!”) and then the epidural. (Turns out they are highly recommended when being induced as there is no natural build up with contractions, just full strength straight away. Ouch.) The epidural man, as I like to call him, asks me to drop my chin (in order to stretch the spine for the needle) Being a bit off my rocker on the gas by this point, for some reason I take that to mean “stick your chin forward” which I promptly do. Then I get the giggles as I think I look like Bruce Forsythe and begin doing impressions accordingly. “Good game good game, nice to see you…”etc. Husband and epidural man look baffled.

Several hours later, in the throws of things, being shouted at to push, and still off my head – I have a sudden panic about whether or not my cat at home is ok. (Her name is Chicken.) “How’s Chicken, how’s my Chicken? Is she ok?” I demand throwing myself upright. (More gas and air) The mid-wife, God love her, is watching the monitor closely and assumes Chicken is the pet name for my unborn child.
“She’s absolutely fine and her heart rate’s steady. Nothing to worry about” She coos soothingly. I lean back on my pillows, relieved and impressed that the hospital staff are so au-fait with my cat’s health.

Now I’m not one for the gory details, but Madam got stuck on her way out, her heart rate dropped, and that’s when all hell seemed to break loose! After the chaos of the labour and theatre, the next thing I remember clearly, after pushing for 19 hours, emotional and exhausted, is the staff all shouting at me to look up. I lift my head . . .

And there she is.

My daughter!

In the arms of the doctor, and crying her little heart out from her difficult journey. My heart explodes. My husband is tearfully whispering in my ear  “Thank you” and the chaos of the rest of the world melts away as I look at Grace. “Go with her” I tell Stu as they take her off for jabs and wrapping up. Finally holding my wrinkly little maggot in my arms, nothing else matters.


She’s got my nose.
Her little fingers wiggle about, feeling the top of the towel she’s wrapped in, exploring her new world. Her eyes scrunch up, and she smacks her little lips together. She’s perfect. She’s our Grace Isobel.

So have a birth plan – apparently, sometimes things do go how you want. (Although I’ve yet to speak to any actual real human being for whom this has been the case) Just don’t get your heart set on it. Grace my not have floated up towards me from an “aqueous pool of calm” but she was safe and healthy and that’s what matters. (I’m mentally and physically scarred for life of course, but whatever.)

All I can say is, when I found that plan in my hospital bag a few days after we’d got her home, it provided a good laugh if nothing else!  


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5 Celebrities I’d like to punch.


Love the Katetakes5 listography theme this week! Without futher ado I shall crack on with “5 Celebrities I’d like to Punch” . . . I’m going to enjoy this . . . MMmwmwwaaa ha ha ha ha (evil laugh.)

                                                       Piers Morgan – Over-opinionated, smarmy, judgemental, conceited, toss-bag. With a stupid face. That’s just ASKING for a wallop! Just how short are people’s memories, exactly? Why is ANY television show giving him air time? Set to dominate America??? Do they even know about his  paper publishing totally faked photos of our soldiers abusing an Iraqi prisoner? Published without an attempt at verifying their authenticity, and without the slightest interest in the harm they would do? And now he judges a talent show . . . words fail me.

 And his voice is really annoying . . . grrrrrrrrr.

   David Blaine. The Git-Wizard. Don’t get me wrong, his early shows – the street magic and stuff – brilliant. But what the hell happened? Blaine has been entombed in an underground plastic box for seven days, stood encased in a massive block of ice for 63 hours, and stood on a 100ft high pillar for 35 hours. I’m sure these were tricky to accomplish, but I can’t help but think “woop-di-f***ing-doo!” Boring to watch, self-indulgent, poppycock. (Now there’s a word that should have a resurgence) STOP THINKING YOU’RE JESUS, BLAINE AND DO US A CARD TRICK!

“Lorraaaine Care -ly”  Och aye this wee lassie wud gairt a reight slarp aboot the fizzog if a’had ma weey!”  (That was Scottish that was.) Well maybe I wouldn’t punch her but a VERY aggressive hair mess up – minimum!  I don’t know what it is about Lorraine but she does my nut in! Making out she’s all, like “OH I’m just a regular hard-working Mum  – I wouldn’t buy designer and I struggle with ideas for tea” My arse! I don’t trust that face. I think she really lives in a big palace, has loads of servants, and secretly hates every guest on her show. I’m onto you Lorraine – your thin veneer of amiability and sycophantic interview technique doesn’t fool me!

  Danny Dyer.

Slightly cross-eyed dick-head.



 Cheryl Cole – Ooh, controversial! Sorry for including the nation’s darling, but has no-one actually noticed that she’s really really dull? Or that she punches black toilet attendants? Ms Curl has provided me with genuine entertainment only twice. Once when she farted on X Factor, and once when she caught Malaria (Yeah yeah – I’m going straight to hell) it was just the irony that she’d been up a friggin’ mountain to raise money . . .for malaria nets!

Did you know that in 2010, a mountaineer became the youngest British Woman ever to climb Everest? We also had amazing sports women, entrepeneurs, fundraisers and woman risking their lives on the front line in Afghanistan. But who wins “Woman of the Year?” . . . ffs!

  (and I bet she’s NOT worth it!)


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