Sunday, October 18, 2009

Pirates and Autumn Pie

It's been a good day. I did my friend Liz's daughter's birthday party - Liz wanted me to entertain the kids for about half an hour. With the help of my amazing husband I gave the kids the story of Captain Alice and the Leaky Tub. A little role play with silly sound effects. Alice loves pirates but I also had a couple of mermaids and one pirate cat. We all had a jolly time and I earnt £20! Hoorah!

In 2 days I'm going to be flying up to Scotland to see my bestest bud Moxie, her adorable children and her hunk of a husband. I can't wait!

And today, after the party, I was feeling a tad creative in the culinary department so I made what I have now called Autumn Pie.....

I fried 2 onions, a green pepper, a packet of turkey mince, 1 green pepper and 1 courgette (zuchini to my American readers) in a little olive oil. I added a little sprinkle of herby good with everything salt and let it fry for a while until the mince was brown (or as brown as turkey mince gets). I added a tin of Heinz Beans and a tin of Heinz Tomato soup. I also added some flour to thicken it up and let it bubble on the hob for a while and I added a splish of Lea & Perrins Worcestershire Sauce too. In the meantime I boiled some swede carrot and potato cut into chunks, then mashed it with a little milk and some butter. Once the turkey mix had thickened and the veg softened I spooned the orange mash on top and popped it in the oven.

It was VERY orange. Hence the name. I really wasn't sure how it would turn out...but Oscar LOVED it. He is currently eating his second bowlful. He asked if he could have Autumn Pie every weekend from now on. Even Rob liked it - he didn't add Tony's Creole Seasoning to it either (which he often does to my cooking). Toby refuses to try it. His loss as Oscar is eating his portion!

Oscar, as I type this, has told me he's too full to finish his second helping, but asked if he did a poo, and pooed all his food out, would there be room for some more? Love it.

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

Getting it off my chest

Something that's been bugging me for a while.......why the hell do grown women still act like schoolgirls and bitch about each other? It's happening all around me and it's doing my head in.

I remember at the beginning of the school term I saw an article somewhere (probably the evil Daily Mail) warning new mums at the school gates about etiquette and cliques. If I'd have read it a few years ago, I'd have disregarded it.

But it's true.

Mums do gossip. We don't have a lot else to talk about when we're full time mummies. I understand that. It's unavoidable. I do it myself but I hope not maliciously. But it can get so nasty. Ganging up on other women....commenting on their parenting or their home......making other women feel uncomfortable because they haven't got a full face of makeup on at drop off time......

There are lots of examples. I've found out today that someone I thought was a friend has been talking about me behind my back. Most of it I'd disregard but one of the things she said was that a group of friends (who I consider close friends) didn't actually like me at all. Which pressed my ex-public school hang up button.

When I was at school I didn't ever feel secure in my friendships. I was the ultimate people pleaser - desperate to make friends. This usually came from the fact that I moved schools every two years or so due to Dad's job so was often in a class with established long term friendships, sometimes mid-term, and I'd do anything to have some friends. But I never really felt like I belonged with people and always imagined they'd run off and leave me. In fact that did literally happen in one school - a gang of girls invited me into town at lunch time then ran away on the way to town (and because I was the fat kid I couldn't keep up). Nasty. Schoolgirl nasty.

And in my twenties I thought I'd dealt with all this crap. I had a friend who was walking all over me, who I was people pleasing with, who I finally said enough to. And I realised that people did actually like me - just for being me. And I didn't have to buy or cajole their friendship. And if I did, then they weren't actually good friends at all, or worth being friends with. It was a big lesson for me. And I thought I'd got it.

But all it took was one gossip and I was back in the street on the way to town again. Paranoid that this group of friends I'd made and spend a lot of time with, would really rather I fucked off and left them alone......


Why do we do it? Why do we, as grown women, do this to other women? To women we call "friends". Or to other mums who we don't even know.....

I had a lot of this last year from one particular mum whose kid didn't get on with Oscar at school and accused Oscar of bullying her son. And screamed at me across a classroom. And was always whispering about my kid in the school yard with another mum. Who had me in tears in the Head teacher's office. And I thought that had finished now. And here I am again today. Stressed. Upset. Paranoid.

I wish I could rise above it all and ignore it. That's why I'm splarging all this out on "paper" and getting it out of my system. And reminding myself. And resolving to try and not gossip or comment on anyone. Unrealistic? Probably. But I'm going to try and think before I speak so I'm not doing to some other woman, what this woman has done to me today.

Sheesh! Rant over. Watch this and laugh instead....