Tuesday, March 27, 2007


We've hardly had a winter here - a couple of weekends with sprinkles of snow, but rarely the biting cold in which you wish you'd put on your gloves or scarf. And yet, today it feels even warmer. With the clocks changing it's light when I drive home and suddenly, unexpectedly a weight I'd not really noticed has lifted.

Yes, Spring must be here...

Monday, March 26, 2007

Personality Test

Your Personality is the Rarest (INFJ)

Your personality type is introspective, principled, self critical, and sensitive.

Only about 2% of all people have your personality - including 3% of all women and around 1% of all men.
You are Introverted, Intuitive, Feeling, and Judging.

Good news! I do still have a personality! Frustratingly, I did this test in a more detailed way a few years ago, but cannot remember how I came out in that one - I don't recall them being graded on 'rarity' though!


Two random thoughts about families:

1) Since Ellie was born nearly 3 years ago, I have spent 1 night away from home (when Paul and I went to a wedding. Last night, I stayed in a hotel near Newcastle so I could be bright eyed and bushy tailed for a training course today. Alone. No Ellie. No Paul. Kingsize bed all to myself. Very strange. And I missed them both - dreadfully. That's not to say I wouldn't stay away again if I needed to... but... it was much much harder than I'd expected.

2) Today, Paul needed to get yet another sicknote from the GP - to tie up the loose ends of his job termination, and so that he can get on with sorting out some incapacity benefit to replace his work (statutory) sick pay. He ended up with a phone appt with the GP, who not only gave Paul a thorough verbal check over, but also asked how Paul's illness was affecting family life, myself and Ellie - on the grounds that we were all registered with the practice. Clearly the days of 'family doctors' are not gone!

Friday, March 09, 2007


I found this on someone else's blog - so I'm hoping it's not copyright! Look at the picture below, and see how long it takes you to see the man hiding amongst the beans. Once you see him, you'll be amazed that you didn't spot him straight away. (Unless of course, your brain works in some incredible way which means that you do see him instantly - in which case I'm most impressed!)

Thursday, March 08, 2007


Tides turning
Waves crashing
Relentlessly battering

Tossed, turned
Shaken, thrown
Set all in a spin

But You -
My anchor
Hold me
Firm and safe

Blogiversary - Random thoughts

It is exactly a year since I first posted. Incredible!

I re-read my first post (and a few subsequent ones) and it made me realise just how much things have changed in the last year. Oh there's all the stuff I've already posted about Paul's illness and job, there's all the bits about my changing job - which you probably got fed up of reading about at the time. Then there are the things I'd not thought about much - how when I went with Ellie to Wacky Warehouse a year ago, I used to lift her up between the sections, and come down the slides with her. Now she does it all by herself (once we've taken her there!).

I'm not sure that I've used this blog as much as I'd hoped as a reflective or creative space - although there have been elements of that. I've veered between posting frequently (NaBloPoMo in November certainly contributed significantly to my year's total of 78 posts) and posting occasionally.

The blog also quickly became valuable as a way of sharing pictures of Ellie with family and friends, and with updating people on my/our situation when I was too busy, or events had left me too bruised to want to keep discussing them - but needed and wanted to let people know what was happening.

What I hadn't expected was that my blog would open the way to reading other blogs - stranger's blogs - with whom I would find an shared interest, an affinity if you will. Checking bloglines and realising that someone has posted - it's almost as good as getting a real letter (not a bill!) through the post.

So, having made it to here - my next goal is to reach my 100th post, to make a little more time in my day to think about what to post, and to actually post it (at least semi-regularly!) and to make a little more time occasionally to visit those other blogs out there. To meet more of those strangers who might yet become cyber-friends.

Friday, March 02, 2007

Side Effects

A potentially humorous post - which never lived up to its potential (sorry)

I mentioned in my last post that generally I don't think of Paul being ill. I know that Paul has momentary absences, memory loss (currently about 50%) from one day to the next, and functioning/processing difficulties which make it difficult for him to absorb and apply new information.

But, on the whole, we have found coping mechanisms for most of the difficulties; little systems which you might do anyway, but which have added use when memories aren't going to be carried from one day to the next. Having a shopping list which you add to as things are used up or about to run out, for example. And these systems allow us to maintain that screen of 'alrightness' because we rarely have to directly face the fact that parts of his brain, at the moment, simply don't work as they are supposed to do.

But sometimes this fails us, because our lovely screen means we miss the obvious!

We're on a fairly tight budget for our food shopping, but on a 'good' week (not too many impulse buys) it's easily sufficient. We also have our wonderful weekly organic food box which we pay for separately. However, for several weeks in a row we just kept overspending...

I should also add that we went up to using a second freezer at Christmas time, but by mid February both freezers were packed with food...

And, that the fridge was always crammed full of food too - with some of it reaching use by dates and going off....


Eventually it struck me - could this have anything to do with the fact that Paul, since he was doing the bulk of the cooking, had also by default been left in charge of shopping lists and menu planning? Erm, that would be tasks which really relied upon remembering what food is left half open in the back of the fridge (or hiding in the freezer) and processing information about what food needed using up most urgently, and planning combinations of food to cook/buy using these bits of information. Not to mention remembering to defrost food we needed

In fact, expecting Paul to do all the tasks he was least able to do, every day. And then wondering why things weren't running quite as smoothly as they might!

Maybe it's not just Paul's brain that isn't working properly!!!