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Tuesday, 26 February 2013

Audition Looming!

2 days to go until the music school audition, and I think I might be more nervous than Josie and Lori.

Josie will have a bit of a practice today, because she's singing one of her songs for her class. She's also doing a presentation on her hobby, painting and playing with Games Workshop models, which she's been working on for a few weeks.

I'm looking forward to finding out how it goes when I see her, but it probably won't be until tomorrow morning, as I've got CCwP and then dancing tonight. I've just had a week off for the February holidays and I'm already looking longingly towards Easter holidays for another break/ironing catch-up.

In other news, I've started writing for another website, this one for children's craft activities, called My Kid Craft. I've recently published a felt i-Pad cover, but there will be more to follow after audition season is over! Please check it out and support the editors, Jane and Claire, friends of mine who have started this up as a new venture and are really working hard to make it a success. Every page view and social media share helps!

Monday, 18 February 2013

Music School Preparation

I've been neglecting the blog a bit lately. That's because for the past week I've had a horrible cold, and I think I barely got out of bed.

Josie and Lori have been preparing for their auditions. Here's a piece from Josie - still a few mistakes, but she's getting there:


Monday, 11 February 2013


As it's half-term, and I'm on holiday, I can't really be faffed with making up an original blog post. So, instead, I thought I'd do a little round-up of the things I've been reading, doing, and buying lately.

First up is reading. Well, not books, as I haven't charged my Kindle for ages. It's blogs and magazines for me.

Katie Kelly's Words for Worms blogs is delivered into my email inbox with pleasing regularity. I often grab a little break at work to catch up with what she's been reading this week, and sometimes to add it to my ever-growing list of things I will read when I charge my Kindle/have any time at all.

Lauren, over at Filing Jointly, is also a regular read of mine. She's given up her job as an  accountant to make a go of being a full-time writer. She is also hilarious, in a quirky, surreal, sort of way that entirely matches with my own sense of humour. She also loves cheese. 

Now, onto to doing:

I've been cooking, taking photos, and writing up recipes for a new website RecipeYum. 10 recipes and counting, including the most delicious and extremely indulgent Salted Caramel Chocolate Torte. For my vegetarian pals, please try the Pasta with Slow-Cooked Onions and Kale. It is surprisingly delicious, and  greens are chock-full of goodness. Note to self: eat more greens.

I've also been making some origami things: hearts for Valentine's Day, cat invitations for Lori and Josie's party that they had at Kiss the Fish a few weeks ago. These crafty kids' activities are all planned to be published (when I get a minute to write them up) on a new website edited by a couple of old school-friends called My Kid Craft. Check it out for some fun ideas to keep the kindles entertained this half-term.

What else?

Ah yes, buying. Well, that's super top secret. Josie sometimes reads this blog, I wouldn't want to give away any secrets for what I've been purchasing for her birthday and Christmas. So, instead of what I've been buying, I'll just link you through to a site that Josie is very much hoping Santa will deliver her a dress from this Christmas. I only wish they made clothes for children older than 12 so I could get in on the bustles, ruffles, and frills action. It's called No Added Sugar, and Santa has delivered a Christmas dress for the past couple of years. Here's hoping that continues. Meanwhile, if you're looking for some unusual, stylish clothes for your own little one, or for a birthday, they have a huge sale on just now. Plenty of bargains to be found. 

And that's my half-term round-up! 

Thursday, 7 February 2013

The Nadir of Winter

It's about 48 days since the shortest day of this winter.

I say "about" because I counted it on my calendar, then lost count, and couldn't be bothered to count again.
So, 48 (+ or - my attention span) days since the shortest day, but it doesn't feel like the darkness is passing. In fact, it feels much more miserable than the shortest day, because at least on the Solstice you have Christmas to look forward to. And for me, the Winter solstice feels like my alternative wedding anniversary. We got married on the longest day, but always planned to do it on the shortest day. Long story.

Anyway, it's 2 days until school half-term, and this year I feel compelled to take a week's leave to coincide with it. I don't usually, but I am this year. It's just that kind of week/month/job. So, I paused today, before I responded to a question from my manager, which in turn was in response to the request by his manager for a document, whose requirements have changed, but which needs to be presented to our director on Tuesday. Yes, that's a long sentence, but I lost the will to edit. Anyway, the question?

Manager "You're away on leave next week, aren't you?"
Me "Yes."
Manager "Where are you away?"
Me <strategic pause while I consider my response>
Would it be wrong to claim that Muir of Lownie has no mobile phone coverage?

Monday, 4 February 2013

Education Committee

I received an email today from Edinburgh City Council to advise that I have formally been accepted as a member of the Education, Children, and Families Committee, as a parent representative.

I was taken aback by the level of interest in the appointment, as on the day after I was informally appointed, Andrew received a phone call for the local paper asking for me. That turned into a feature and an online article, which you can read here. They sprung some difficult questions on me, which highlighted how difficult it was going to be, representing all of those parents across the city.

The next week, I was again surprised to be contacted so that I could give my opinion on a study about maths homework. I am simply not used to having an opinion that might actually be of interest to anyone.

Despite being a little nervous, I am very excited to participate in local government, and to see how the decisions that directly affect my children are made. Perhaps I'll even be able to blog about them!

We shall see...