Sunday, May 18, 2008


I teach in Primary at church. If you've never set foot across the threshold of an LDS chapel (and for pity's sake, why not!? LOL), Primary is our children's organisation...we have Sunday School type classes, and activities (Sunday and otherwise) for children aged 18 months to 12 years (when they go into the youth programme). So, my current roles at church are to lead the music (which I love) and to teach the Sunbeams--the 3 year olds. I have three regular children. They're just starting to get to know me and do more than stare at me with big wide eyes during the lessons. Always a bonus.

Well, today this is how it went. The lesson was 'I Am Grateful for Animals.' We talked about the creation, and I had brought in a lovely book all about animals (praise be all things Dorling Kindersley) which we spent ages looking at and talking about (yes, that animal would probably bite you Luke. Yes, and that one. Yes, and that one. Yes, and that one. My, you're obsessed with animals biting you eh? Yes, and that one...). And we decided what noises each of the animals made ("RRRRRRAAAAAAAGGHHH"--my word boys, that lion roar was very loud wasn't it?) And then I taught them about all the things that animals give us. Wool for example...and we sang Baa Baa Black Sheep. Or feathers for our pillows (and no, Jake, feathers don't come off a Jake, don't stick that there...feathers don't come off a fish). Or we get eggs from chickens (yum yum) or we get milk and hence yogurt and cheese from cows (no Luke, that big brown animal there, that's a cow...that's not a sheep. No Luke, honestly, that's a cow). So I bought in some yogurt to taste (they had two tastes actually cos it was popular). And I bought in some cheese to eat too. And then Jake said (with the accent and everything)--

"More cheese Grommit!"

And I wet my pants. Honestly, I think actual wee did come out.

Thursday, May 15, 2008


Had a brief shopping trip to the delight that is Tescos supermarket earlier this evening. And I would just like to say, 'fajita' is not pronounced fa-JEE-ta. It is pronounced fa-hee-ta!! HEEEEEEEEEE people, HEEEEEEEEEEE. And, while I'm at it, tortilla is not tor-TILL-uh. It is tor-tee-uh.

And that is all I have to say about that.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Why do these things always happen to me...?

Back from a weekend that entailed mostly a trip to London Temple (down in Lingfield, Surrey if you don't know it). It is SUCH the trek from this part of the country (4+ hours...which is of course a short journey compared to some people, I know, I know, I know...but when you've grown up in Reading where it's a case of just over an hour and you're being smiled at by temple workers in white, it is a BIG DEAL!).

So, Celyn and I stayed at Rob and Kate's on Friday night (which is already 1 hour closer for me), Kate, Celyn and I headed over to Cardiff to pick up Gil and Eleanor on Saturday morning, and then 1 1/2 hours later we dropped Celyn off with the Pine family in Reading so she could play with Zoe all day (which she loved of course) and grabbed some breakfast munchables in Sainsbury's. Then 1 1/2 hours later (because of car-park traffic on the M25 at one point) we arrived at the temple. Which was, by the way, heaving busy that day.

So. So far so good. Par for the course. And the weather was lush.

As we walk up the corridor upon arriving, some men appeared around a corner heading towards us, and among their number was Bob Turney, an old and dear friend from Reading. I always love to see people down there that I know, so in my usual gregarious manner, I said, "Heeellooooo!!!", held my arms out wide, and we gave each other a big hug. As I was unclasping him, I said, "Oh, is Sue here as well!?" (his lovely wife), and then... and only then... I looked into his face up close for the first time.

This was not Bob at all.

This was a man that looked like Bob. But indeed, was not Bob.

The man who looked like Bob replied "Er, no..." to my request after his wife Sue (who is probably not...let's face it...Sue) and scarpered up the corridor as fast as his legs could carry him.

I, on the other hand, scurried off into the women's changing area after Kate and (completely forgetting myself because I was sooooo utterly mortified) practically YELLED across the room, "Kate!" to get her attention (because in the temple one should be speaking in reverent and calm whispers). Oh noooo, not me. I yelled. After accosting a total stranger.

So. If you happen to know a man who looks a bit like this man (who definitely is the real Bob), who is a Latter-day Saint and who is now regailing you with stories about a nutter redhead woman who obviously embraces people willy-nilly (and who probably needs glasses), then please apologise on my behalf. I really was horribly embarrassed and had already decided if I saw him anywhere else that day I was going to dive off into the nearest room. And if you were in the changing room and heard me yelling, I again would like to offer my heartfelt sorries *sigh*.

As my friend Debbie said when I told her yesterday, "If someone had told me that story without saying who it was that it had happened to, and then asked me who they thought had done this ridiculous thing, I would absolutely have guessed you." *sigh*

Funny thing happened on the way home though. Eleanor (who is 20) is getting married in July, so (as you do) we were chatting with her about all the plans, and we were asking about her dress. She said the bridal shop had been great, but "one dress they made me try on...eeeuuw! It made me look...well, it made me look 25 or 26!!!" "25!!!?" Gil and I said simultaneously. "Oh my goodness...25!!!? Where is this dress and can I have one??!!!!" Love her.

The temple was...difficult. It's where Danny proposed (kneeling on the bridge over the pond). It's where we were married on a beautiful summer's evening. It's where we went when we were agonising over being able to have a child (after 2 miscarriages) and received a good deal of inspiration on the matter. It's a place that's all about eternal families. So perhaps you can understand when I admit I did have a weep when I was there and the visit has actually left me feeling quite blue. I enjoyed the journey with friends, I loved seeing the Pines and Samara in Reading on Saturday, albeit fairly briefly, and I enjoyed staying at the Gilmours. But although I know I should go to the temple, it has such strong and emotional memories for me, I don't know how to overcome those feelings I now get of inadequacy and failure, which are multiplied a hundredfold by being there. And then I feel guilty for feeling like that. Any thoughts anyone?

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Blogging and Scrapbooking

I read a website called Mormon Mommy Wars. It's good. And often very funny. They discuss the every-day nonsense that is motherhood. Well... being-a-woman-hood actually. With an LDS twist to the mix.

Today's post was really interesting to me and will be to a lot of you out there too, as it was entitled 'Blogging vs. Scrapbooking or Excuse Me While I Navel Gaze.' The writer's basic premise is (her views, not mine) that in scrapbooking life is pretty-pretty and unrealistic (no poo, no horribly grubby children...unless you're pointing out how cute they are with baked beans all over their hair, no drama about your menstrual cycle...just happy families doing happy things on sunshiny/autumnul/snowy days. Happy. Happy happy happy). Whereas in blogging we tend to write about our children having the screaming ab-dabs in the middle of the supermarket (and how we wanted to just abandon them in the frozen peas section, to be brought up by wolves or gypsies or whoever), or how your mother-in-law is driving you nuts (and that you think she actually was brought up by wolves). The writer of said article says, "Basically, scrapbooks are there to show you the shiny stuff. Blogging is there to show you the poop."

The whole post is right here for you to read in its entirety.

*Taking on a Marge Simpson voice* Mmmmm...I don't agree (now there's a surprise...).

I did leave a lengthy reply to her post (now there's another surprise...) in which I said that as someone who a) Enjoys the creativity of writing through a blog and b) Enjoys the creativity of scrapbooking (oh yes I do!)…they are BOTH expressions through graphic design, art, photography, family history, and creative writing all mooshed together. And for me, anything grimy and gritty is fair game for both blogging and scrapbooking, as long as it doesn’t hurt someone…I just will NOT go into bitching about people in an unkind way anywhere on the internet. It’s not the place (in my mind). Bun fights in public? Nuh uh. They make the thrower of buns look like Trash. With a capital T. (I so want to write 'White Trash' there but then all the white trash people would be offended and wouldn't that be ironic...)

But I would and do blog about illness and I scrapbook about illness. I blog about bad moods, and I scrapbook about bad moods. I blog my opinions about the irritant that is George Dubya Bush and I scrap my opinions about the irritant that is George Dubya Bush. I don't, however, blog my ‘dirty laundry’ …in fact, I am more likely to scrap my dirty laundry (Not literally. Cos that would be smelly. And a bit silly. And did I mention smelly?) and keep it in an album for more private viewing so my daughter can know who I really am...when she’s emotionally mature and ready to (poor kid - you *thought* your mum was a marvel, and in fact she's a headcase...).

Blogging just allows me to get the memories down immediately and probably in more lengthy and wordy detail, and then scrapbooking allows me to get it on in an arty, photography, wordy way, but created over a longer period of time. With glue. And cutting implements. Happiness.

So, in short, I don’t believe they’re “versus” one another at all…they complement one another. And if you like one and not the other, no biggie. It’s when you actually don’t like one and feel obliged to do it from some sort of ‘everyone’s doing it and so I must be a bad mother/person/family historian if I don’t’ point of view that it becomes ridiculous. And slightly deranged.

What do *you* think...?

Monday, May 05, 2008

National Scrapbooking Day!

Oh I just know there are people out there now hooting with laughter, but yeeeees, yeeeeees, mock aaaaaaall you like. There is a National Scrapbooking Day (in fact, it should be International Scrapbooking Day because scrapbookers in North America, Europe, Australia, NZ etc. all celebrate on the same first Saturday in May). So there. Nuh.

And I was happily invited to go hang out with Gil and Katie-Jane and Jan at Sue Winters' house in Cardiff. And the liver and onions lunch at The Quarry didn't go amiss neither.

So, after months of scrapbooking inactivity (cos, quite frankly, every time I even looked at my scrapping stuff I would literally feel ill and panic-attacky), I have completed a page. And by jilly-jingo I did enjoy it. I enjoyed the company of lovely people. And I scrapped some of my favourite recent photos. you go. April Fool!
I'm off out to watch my girl on a trampoline for a bit and then a mooch round Asda. Party on down. Mwaaah x

Get on Facebook Lee Webb.

Sunday, May 04, 2008

Conversation with Celyn...

...whilst driving her to her Nanny's yesterday:

Celyn: Mummy, when is that moneybanks day?
Me: *Looking puzzled* What? What day?
Celyn: Moneybanks day.
Me: *Completely not understanding and racking my brains thinking about something I might have said about money or piggybanks or giving her money on a certain day...* Um...can you explain what you mean? Tell me when I said it.
Celyn: You know. That day you told me about...moneybanks day, when I don't go to school
Me: *Ting...lightbulb goes on over my head* Oooooooh!!! Bank Holiday Monday!! *Now have to keep looking out of my right-hand window whilst driving, so she can't see me struggling like crazy to keep my guffaws of laughter under total control* Yes, yes *breathe, breathe..control, control* holiday Monday. That's this Monday luvvie...

Friday, May 02, 2008

How cool are these?!

It occurred to me I'd better shift my typing fingers and blog about this, because the video won't be around forever on the site. But wait, I'm rambling. Let me explain.

My mate Lee (who is, by the way, brilliant) 'invented' (created?) a new toy a couple of years ago. It's now on sale in FAO Schwarz in New York and will soon be in Macys all over America. I believe they're in Hamleys in London too. Well,'ve heard of Martha Stewart right? The cooking/home decor/general homemaking guru type person? Well, she has a TV show in the States and Lee was asked to be on it. With his toy. Knitwits. I'm not calling you knitwits...that's the name of the toy, nitwits!

So, last week he was on the show (he told me it was all very nervewracking..."don't look straight at the camera, got to get this done in one take (no pressure), be generally wonderful, ya di ya di ya") and this week the show is on her website. Oh yeah baby! So I got to watch my friend (who is truly one of my dearest friends, and yet because of that great big Atlantic Ocean in the middle of us, I haven't seen for...ummm...13 years now). Fun fun fun.

Bit of trivia...when Lee first graduated from university and moved to New York, he shared with 3 was Brett Helquist who is the illustrator of the Lemony Snicket books (A Series of Unfortunate know the ones), and another housemate was Rob Blackard (who I met on my trip to NY, NY 13 years ago as it happens...funny guy) who all scrapbookers out there will know as Rob from Rob & Bob Studio. Quite the household...'s the link to the video. You need to go to the right of the screen and click on the picture that says Quentin Webb Crafts (Quentin is Lee...I can't be tiddled to explain). Watch it. Enjoy the toys (they are REEEEALLY cool). Order one. Order TWO. Order some socks. Or go and pick your nose and do your dusting. Whatever.


And the socks they're made from (LittleMissMatched) have a part of their website dedicated to these little fellas...each one has a personality you see. It's all to do with where odd socks disappear to... so check that out too. Click there...there...on the LittleMissMatched link...just there...). Bossy moo.

Mwwaaah x