Monthly Archives: September 2012

Feeling a bit blue today.

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No1 son left for university this morning – I got up at 5.50am to wave him and N off on the long drive southwards (in grim weather).  I was surprised at how much of a wrench it was – it finally dawned on me that this is the first step in him leaving home for good, and not being here at all – at some point, not to long away, he will have his own home, somewhere that’s not here, somewhere a long way away.  For the past 19 years, I have seen him almost every day (apart from the odd school trip etc), have known what was going on in his life, have been there for him, fed him, talked to him, hugged him – and that is coming to an end.

I know there will always be a connection, but if he is anything like me, weeks could go by without him ringing home, and I won’t know what his life is like, or what’s happening to him – he has to detach, to leave home, to become independant – all these are good things, but I am finding the detaching more painful than I thought I would.

I am getting over it, and I will get over it – and I am happy for him that he has embarked on this new, exciting phase of his life, and proud that we as parents have brought him up to be a confident, happy person who is capable of this independance and who will, I hope, do well and be happy at what he is doing.

I guess I am just indulging myself a bit, by letting myself wallow in these feelings.  On one level, they are actually quite encouraging – I thought my emotions were rather too well controlled and buried, and have been afraid, from time to time, that I am not really capable of feeling love for people (including myself).  But this would seem to prove that I do love No1 son, otherwise I would have waved him off without a qualm.  Maybe it is just that I am not good at recognising the positive emotions in myself, but they are actually there.  If I genuinely didn’t feel love for anyone, people would pick up on it, and it would surely have affected my parenting and my relationship with the boys, and I see no evidence of that.  On the contrary, they seem to be happy, bright, confident boys, and other people seem to like them a lot – so maybe I haven’t done too bad a job.

To end on a positive note, and going back to the ‘getting up at a reasonable time’ theme of recent days – not only did I get up at 5.50am to wave the Uni-bound party off, but I got up again at 7.30am to drive the other two boys to the paper shop to collect their sunday rounds (which are very heavy), and then dropped two lots of papers round No3 son’s round for him – all without coffee and without being too grumpy.  I consider that a very Positive Thing!

Plus N has sent me photos of No1 son’s room and hall, so I can picture him there, and I know he is safely installed in his room, has met some of the other students he’s sharing with, has had a meal, and is off out – so all is well.

Happy saturday.

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Firstly I managed to get up at 9.09am – only one cycle of the snooze button after the alarm went off – so an improvement on yesterday, and much better than I usually manage. It did give my husband a bit of a shock to find me downstairs, drinking coffee and reading the paper – he thought there must have been some major disaster, for me to be up that early!

On the positive side too is the fact that I have had a haircut today – I’m not desperately happy with the way it was blow-dried, but it is a very good cut, and I am happy with it.

It’s the last day before no1 son leaves for university, and he is trying to get himself sorted out (of course, he hasn’t had all summer to get himself sorted, has he?!). Luckily I think N and I have got most of the essentials sorted out for him, so we should be OK, as long as he manages to put some clothes into the car. That’s if we can prise him away from the internet for long enough to decide what clothes to take.

I’m proud of him, and excited for him – but feeling a bit sad and nervous at the fact that his departure is so near. He’s leaving home, and that is a bit scary for a parent.

Positively positive!

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Yes, dear readers – I am starting on a Positive note.  Not only did I manage to get up at 9.30am today – which is a substantial improvement on the rest of the week (apart from Monday, when I had to get up on time), but I have also packed up and posted all the blanket squares that have been awaiting packaging and dispatch for some time.  So I am choosing to focus on the positives – I didn’t manage to get up when my alarm went off at 9am, but I did get up only half an hour later, which is good.  And although it has taken me a long time to post off the blanket squares, I have done it now, and they are in time for the blankets they were intended for.

No1 son is in his final countdown before leaving for university, and I find myself with a bit of a lump in my throat at the thought.  It seems like he is going such a long way away, and for such a long time (in reality, down to Reading, and for termtime only) – but I am very proud of him, and excited for him too.  Actually, if truth be told, I am probably a little bit jealous too, because of all the great experiences he has in front of him.

A quiet Thursday.

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And a somewhat lazy one, to be honest. Yet more exercise for the snooze button on the alarm clock, until finally Jenni Murray and Womans Hour shamed me into getting up. At least I did manage to make myself have a shower when I got up, which is positive, as I was feeling very unmotivated this morning.

I’ve started a new knitting project – it’s another mumsnet blanket project, this time called Mini-Hugs, where we are going to knit little blankets for Yorkhill Hospital – some people are knitting squares, and others are going to knit little blankets – I’m going to knit squares and make them up into a blanket myself. I’ve got the yarn (a rather nice, soft acrylic dk in lavender blue, cream and raspberry), so we will see what I can do – pictures will follow here (when I have actually made something, of course).

Oh blimey (part 2)

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Eeek – 8 days missed.  And to be honest, I am not sure I have found something positive for each of those days.  I haven’t been sleeping well, and that does rather tend to colour my reactions and feelings – as does the fact that I have a rash – like heat rash – on my arm, that has been there for some weeks now, and itches like fire sometimes.

But, things haven’t been wholly negative – in fact there have been positive things, and I have noticed them.  The visit to my mum went well – it was good to spend time with just her and my sister, and we enjoyed catching up on all eachother’s news, and we had an afternoon out in Ludlow, visiting the Food Centre there – which is a mecca for foodies, and somewhere I could have spent an awful lot of money, had it not been for the fact that I would have to carry it all back on the train!  I did buy some interesting cheeses, as a treat for N, to thank him for making it possible for me to go.

I also enjoyed going back with my sister to her house in Bucks, and seeing all the work they have had done to it – a beautiful new, extended kitchen and sunroom, and extensions and redecorating upstairs too.  They have done a lovely job of it – and it is sleek and modern without being characterless – indeed, it is the opposite – it is warm and welcoming, and utterly suited to the two of them.

The sleeper trip back was not so good – for some reason, the Caledonian Sleeper fitted sheets are too short for their mattresses – not by a small amount either, so they come untucked almost instantly, and you end up sleeping on the mattress cover, which is not so comfortable.  But it was a smooth journey back, with a bit of a delay that meant we arrived in Glasgow at a convenient time for N to drive in and collect me.  And I was woken in my cabin by the steward delivering a cooked breakfast of bacon, sausage, omelette, mushrooms and tomato, which I ate sitting up in bed, and feeling very decadent!

The knitting meet-up with the Glasgow mumsnetters also went very well – we sat in the cafe at the Burrell Collection from 11am until nearly 4pm, knitting, gossiping, eating cake, and generally having a very good time indeed.  I made another square for a mumsnet blanket (or Woolly Hug) – in a mid slaty blue, knitted in bramble stitch, so I felt productive.  Plus, for me, it was good as it is somewhere I can drive to easily, and has plenty of parking, which does take away a couple of the things I tend to stress about in advance of such things.

Apart from that, my life has been fairly quiet – getting over the very small amount of sleep I got on the sleeper, knitting, watching tv and helping to get No1 son ready for university.  We’ve got him a certain amount of kitchen equipment, plates, cutlery etc, and some new bedding and towels – as well as a care package of food, with some staples like pasta and rice, stock and cereal in it, and some extras like biscuits and tinned chilli and tinned pies – so he will not starve (even if he does come home with scurvy).

I do have a Positive Thing for today – I have finished the Hitch hiker scarf, and am very pleased with it.  I finished knitting it yesterday, and sewed the ends in today, so I could take some pictures to put up on here – see below – and now it is soaking in conditioner, because it is knitted of a 75% wool yarn, so is a bit itchy, and I hope the conditioner will help with this.

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Ohhh blimey!

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I seem to have missed more than a few days << blushes >>.  But I have been trying to stay positive, even though I haven’t been reporting back here.

Life has been whizzing by here, even though I don’t seem to have got much actually done.  Though that’s not entirely true – I have been getting lots more sleep, thanks to over-the-counter sleeping tablets, and hopefully that has broken the cycle of insomnia for the moment.

I’ve also been shopping for more craft projects – I have some decopatch to do (you get cardboard items – boxes, picture frames, models etc, and use thin, colourful craft papers to cover them to make your own item), and I went to felt-making group last week, and made a pot/vase/vessel – to be honest, it’s a bit hard to know what to call it, but it was made around an inflatable beachball, and when the fleece had all felted well enough, the ball was deflated and taken out, and the opening enlarged, and then I shaped the vessel into it’s final form.  I think it’s going to be a yarn-holder, for my ball of wool to sit in whilst I’m knitting, so it can’t escape and skitter away when I pull a length of yarn out.  It’s actually the first time I have made an item out of the felt I have made, and though I have been pleased with the fabric and beads I’ve made previously, it is very nice to have something I can use.

I’m posting a picture here, so you can see what I’ve made.  Looking at the picture, it does look worryingly like the pods that the baby aliens come out of, in the film Alien……

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I’m not sure it’s finished yet – I am considering either embroidering and beading onto it, or maybe needlefelting onto it with some wensleydale fleece locks, to give a seaweedy look.

Other positive things – I have managed to do some more housework than I would normally do – N and No2 son were away for the weekend, and I stripped and changed our bedding, washed the used bedding and ironed it all too.  And I cleaned the kitchen, whilst waiting for them to get back late sunday night.

I’ve also written a short piece about the knitting group, for the local news magazine in the village where the group meets – it’s to advertise both the group, and the craft fair that we are a major part of, which happens at the end of next month.  I’ve also had a friend round for coffee, and have ordered even more merino fleece tops, for next month’s felt making group; and have made arrangements to go down to London to meet up with some other knitting mumsnetters at the Knit and Stitch show at Alexandra Palace – which is a big deal for me, as it involves going well out of my comfort zone.  I’ve also got involved in organising a local meet up with the Glasgow knitting mumsnetters, and am really looking forward to that.  For me, it is a very positive thing that I can not only make the decision to get out of the house and go to something (which can be a lot harder than you’d think – there’s a very persuasive voice at the back of my head telling me I’d much rather stay at home, and it is hard to ignore), but that I can actually look forward to it, rather than dreading it.  I do try to make myself do whatever it is, even if I am dreading it (not always successfully, I have to confess), and I know that I will enjoy whatever it is once I am there – but I would far rather not dread things, and actually look forward to them insted.

I’m off on my travels tomorrow too – my sister and I are going to visit my mother for a couple of days.  I’ll travel down to the West Midlands by train, and my sister will pick me up at a convenient station for her – she’s coming up from the south – and drive us both back to Mum’s house, and then on Friday she’s going to drop me to a train so I can go into London and get the sleeper back to Glasgow.  It will be good to catch up with my sister, and to see Mum (I haven’t seen her for a year, as distance, my depression and her health issues have got in the way), and I am also looking forward to the journeys too.  Going down, it will be good to have some time to myself, with peace and quiet to listen to music, read, knit or just look out of the train window; and coming back on the sleeper seems romantic, and out-of-the-ordinary.

But now I really should go and make a start on the list of things that need to get done before I can leave – little things like packing, printing out my ticket for the sleeper, sorting things out so N can look after the house and the boys without too much hassle (including making the shopping list, otherwise heaven knows what we’ll end up eating next week) – oh, and cooking casserole for tonight’s supper.  The arrival of the colder weather has reopened the possibility of all the lovely comfort foods – and tonight will be beef casserole, with carrots and pearl barley, served with baked potatoes and dumplings – I can’t wait!  But it won’t happen unless I get it in the oven, so I had better get off the computer, and get doing!

No-therapy Thursday!

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Feels a bit odd, to be honest.  As if there’s something I’ve forgotten to do.  But so far, I am surviving alone, and I still think that I made the right decision.

One of today’s Positive Things is that we got some good news yesterday about my lovely mother-in-law’s health.  I’m not going to say more here, out of respect for her privacy, but I am happy that the news is good.  Actually, my mother-in-law counts as one of my Positive Things all by herself – she is such a special person, and I am lucky to have her in my life.  Hopefully she is going to come up and visit us soon – we always enjoy her visits, miss her when she goes home, and look forward to the next visit with eagerness.