More than a Mum

More than a mum is the place I save everything that doesn’t fall into the Travel, Food and Lifestyle buckets. It’s all those little things that go into my life and make me the person I am. Expect to find, fashion, beauty, photography, hobbies and anything else that is another part of me that I thought you might be interested in.

 

tea india

I have found throughout my life so far that there is nothing like a cup of tea to start sorting out even the most knotted situations.

Frequently on soaps, films and in books, when the going gets tough and the need to get to the bottom of a problem arises, on goes the kettle and the comforting sounds of cups, teaspoons and the tea caddy start to resonate around the kitchen. Allowing the tea maker valuable seconds to think clearly.

Let’s face it, a cup of tea has magical qualities that a continental espresso just cannot compete with. Our brothers and sisters over the other side of the Channel may find it ‘quaint’ our love of tea, they find it amusing our five o’ clock ritual (which they still seem to think exists) and they laugh at us behind our backs for being so different.

They try to copy us and attempt at going one better by using fruit teas, green teas and tea with lemon even but they just don’t get it. Milk? They ask with an upturned nose and an expression telling us we must be insane.

Brits don’t stick to the five o’clock tradition, we haven’t for years. We drink copious amounts of tea starting from wake up right through to the 10 o’clock news.

Each mug patiently waiting with a dash of milk and a teabag for the kettle to boil. Long gone are the days of a delicate china tea-cup – we have evolved to enormous mugs so as to draw out the experience even longer.

When Cheryl found out about Ashley playing away again, I bet her mum put the kettle on.

When Sarah Brown saw in the press her husband being accused of bullying, I bet she put the kettle on.

When Kate Moss heard the devastating news that Alexander McQueen had taken his life, I bet she put the kettle on.

You see every blow we take in life is accompanied by this ritual which doesn’t solve the problem, or take away the pain but it gets people sitting down and comforting each other, it starts you thinking about your next step and which is the best way forward and slowly slowly by the time you reach the end of your mug a plan has started to form and once again you feel a tiny bit better, a tiny bit stronger and a smile albeit weak is hiding in the creases of your mouth.

This post was inspired by Maternal Tales from the South Coast as her first paragraph made me want to make her a cuppa…do check out her video it’s amazing.

I have been reading with sad interest the recent news surrounding John Terry and Wayne Bridge and I was sorry yesterday to see Wayne take the decision to step down from playing for England in the World Cup compromising his own football career.

I hope with two months ahead he may overcome this and change his mind but I do understand his confusion and possibly dislike of being close to a man, once called a friend, who betrayed him on such a deep level.

We’ve been talking about friends on the blogosphere recently and how some come into your life share wonderful experiences with you and then vanish never to be seen again and others stay around for the whole long haul. Each one of these encounters, we imagined, were to enrich our lives and show us new angles from which to analyse yourself.

Trust, I believe, is fundamental in any relationship and when that trust is broken it is incredibly hard to patch up and move on. It can be done but requires enormous amounts of input from both parties.

So why is it that all of us at some point have been betrayed by a person we called a friend? What is the lesson to be learnt here?

Do as you would be done by.

A powerful statement that I try to live by. I don’t want any of my friends having a fling with my man so I don’t flirt with their men, not even for a joke but freshly arrived in Italy at the tender age of 19 and madly in love with my very own Italian I was horrified to see how girls would hang around him very obviously looking for his attention fully aware that he was ‘in a relationship’. This didn’t seem to bother them in the slightest and yet there was such a strong enforced rule I had learnt growing up here in the UK.

If he’s ‘spoken for’ you don’t mess.

So why didn’t the Rule count out there? I came across this time and time again  it caused endless arguments until eventually it wore me out and I surrendered.

Vanessa Perroncel is French, I believe she grew up there and came here to work a few years back. So is it a continental thing? Or does it also exist here in the UK and yet I, thankfully haven’t bumped into it yet?

What makes a woman go with a man when she knows he is a husband and father, when she realises that her actions will have dire consequences on an entire family? Greed? Ignorance? Lust?

When I was 18 I worked in a famous restaurant in Mayfair London as a receptionist. On handing in my notice my manager suggested we had a leaving party, me and him, he would book a room at the Ritz Hotel and we could spend an afternoon together.

A mind-boggling suggestion let there be no doubts at what he was hoping for, but I knew he had a wife and two little boys and coming from a broken family myself I couldn’t do it. I declined.

If you were the other woman do you think you would be able to stop yourself and turn away before it was too late?

stirling cooper blouse

Have a look at this blouse will you?

I found it in my wardrobe and I thought to myself …with all the flowery stuff around at the moment and bright colours it could be useful again…I’m following on from my Wreck post if you hadn’t noticed.

Well I thought back to where and when I had bought it and started to tot up the years…

This blouse is older than my first son Tommy who will be 22 at the end of March!

How is that for hoarding stuff?

I want you to keep in mind that I bought it in London in approx 1985, when I had finished college, was working in London and living there too. Please also take into account I moved to Italy in 1986 and lived there on and off till 2003. In that period I probably moved home more than 10 times. (I’ve moved three times since I’ve been with Paul and that’s only 5 years!)

This Stirling Cooper blouse (it says on the label) is made out of a very light chiffon kind of material, in fact there are places on the back seam that runs from one shoulder to the other where the stitching is starting to fray and it still hasn’t been put into a charity bag. The print is a kind of Andy Warhol with Marilyn and James Dean clear to see.

I could probably count on one hand the amount of times I have worn it and yet it has survived, umpteen house moves, 4 children, 2 dogs, 4 cats, 2 men’s opinions (maybe more but I’d have to think carefully) and some raucous night’s out.

Wow! I am impressed and if anyone can give me a tip on how to repair the fraying chiffon seam at the back I’d be very grateful and maybe give the shirt an airing in the near future.

If you dug deep into your wardrobe, could you come up with some vintage?

The Euro Lottery that is.

Again for the umpteenth week, I have bought my two lucky dips leaving it all to destiny to decide if I should I be the lucky winner of £113,000,000 this Friday evening.

Once I have my tickets, I feel very lucky and will continue to do so until I watch the draw. (There’s a 13 in there, lucky for some… and all that.)

I also spend a lot of time wondering how I’d spend all that money and over the past months this has become a favourite pastime of mine.

I would be quite happy sharing my win with another one or two so as not to have too much money. That would be vulgar.

Usually, my dream spending runs like this:-

  1. A house, probably with an indoor swimming pool, huge gardens (with a gardener!) walk-in wardrobes, a massive kitchen and garages for all of my…
  2. Cars. An Aston Martin, a Jag and a little mini to run around in..
  3. Holidays, well more like one big journey around the world, returning every now and then to check the gardener has done his job.
  4. A wedding. Paul and I could tie the knot in style, we could afford to fly everyone we know wherever we decide to marry.
  5. Gifts to my family and closest friends (could possibly be thousands MILLIONS of pounds remember so keep on popping back!)
  6. Charities – The Smile Train, The Miscarriage Association, Breast Cancer research.
  7. A villa in Folgaria so I can visit my childfren and see my friends whenever I like.

There’s plenty more I’m sure but the girls are waking upstairs and interrupting my shopping spree!

Have you ever thought about winning the lottery? How would you spend your money on a big win?

Rudolph potatoes roasted with lamb and vegetables

Best day of the week? I’m not sure, maybe that prize would go to Saturday because as much as I love my Sundays they are tarnished with the knowledge that tomorrow is Monday again.

But Sundays for me are all about relaxing, indulgence, Sunday roasts, delicious desserts – today we have a white chocolate cheesecake for our guests made with my own fair hands mmmm.

Sundays are listening to the radio whilst flicking through the papers seeing who has been caught in the media floodlights this week.

Sundays are not being too concerned about the housework.

Sundays are doing the ironing in front of a Sunday afternoon film.

Sundays are not worrying about the diet for a day.

Sundays are for nice long walks at a brisk pace to keep yourself warm.

the ship inn cobham kent

Sundays are a pint and a glass of wine in the local pub before dinner is served.

Sundays are for family get togethers, when the children can eat more chocolate and sweets than usual, dad gets an extra pint and mums catch up on the gossip.

Sundays are for family days out, paying way too much for the parking, spending exorbitant amounts for food and drinks, finding out you needed to book in order to enter and getting home worn out.

Sundays are for savouring the last Sunday moments on the sofa while the children sleep watching trash TV with a nice cup of tea.