Thursday, January 21, 2016

Ten Things to Love about Celtic Connections

1) It is to January what Christmas is to December.

2) You can go to a gig on your own.

3) Even if you don't know the singer or the band.

4) Especially if you don't know the singer or the band.

5) It will never fail to disappoint. In fact, it'll be heading towards life affirming...

6) So you have to share this fact with the old bloke next to you, who comes every year from England for four nights, because he   already knows it. (He's brought his own biscuits).

7) You'll feel glad you went.

8) You'll feel you've found a hidden treasure.

9) A hidden treasure you have to share.

10) And then you want to go back for more.



“There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle.”


― Albert Einstein


Gig listings here -

Just Do It. 





Tuesday, January 19, 2016

# GreyJanuary

I agree with our Makar, Liz Lochhead when she says you just have to write the truth and be done with it

So today I'm not trying to eek some 'jollity' into the blog. Tess has been ill for a week with a flu-type bug and the wee soul can barely get out of bed. It feels like one of the longest and grey-est Januarys I can remember. It is just so incredibly grey out there. Scottish people, you know what I mean!

I feel suspended - I just want my wee girl to be better, which, of course is so obvious it almost doesn't need saying. It's hard to concentrate on anything else when you're essentially a home nurse listening out for coughs and cries.

On that note, I better post this before the next call.

Thursday, January 14, 2016

Things Needing Done

Once I teased my mum when she said she needed to 'get the paper read' like it was another chore or worldly duty. January is that kind of month. My part-time job is on a lull (waiting on the next project to start). There may be an illusion that I'm 'just' passing my days in the house, but wherever I look, there are still things 'needing done.'

Today it is...

washing (laundry), tidying, cleaning,
thinking of and cooking the dinner
taking Tess to her hospital check up for her asthma...you get the picture. Painting the chipped skirting boards with have to wait.

It's one degrees outside but the sun is out - for what feels like the first time in weeks. I should be up the canal on a bike, if I had any sense. 

Sunday, December 06, 2015

Departments, you say?

'Mummy, I've made you a wedding cake. That's you (the pig) and that's Daddy (the Minion).'





I enjoy watching the gender differences between the kids. Tonight they were building a den together with duvet covers and small tables.

Tess: So, this is the hairdressing department (adds brush), and this is the pony ride department (inserts blue plastic horse) and this can be the relaxing department (horizontal Barbie in a halterneck).

Hugh: (with what the feck? expression) No Tess, we can't have DEPARTMENTS! It's a DEN! It doesn't have departments!

She cheerfully persisted. Eventually he conceded to a Toy Department and a Cool Things Department (inserts Angry Bird sunglasses, hair gel and air guitar). Domestic harmony restored. Tick.

Saturday, December 05, 2015

Asthma: the Unknown Territory.


Mother / daughter Selfie by Tess

In general, this has been a blog about overcoming severe illness and the gratitude that flows from that, so it feels sadly strange to document new struggles with our wee girl's asthma.

I'm aware asthma is a lamentably common illness, so I hope in just saying it like it is (for us, anyway) it'll be useful to others who are affected. I'm hardly in a position to offer advice or solace.

Ever since Tess started school, she's had a run of infections and the throat-y ones just go for her, so here she is, back on another five day course of steroids plus another new drug (Montelukast / Singulair) that has a mean list of possible side effects. She's been on the brown puffer for 4 months now.

I am finding Asthma UK to be very helpful. Any small comfort  in times of stress. As a friend said to me today, 'nothing affects you like your child's well-being being threatened.'  It makes me wonder how my poor mother bore it when I was ill for so long. Thank god I managed to get out the other side. I suppose that's what I hope most for Tess - that the condition improves as she gets older. 

Oh, the heart-melt of bringing her a glass of water to the sofa when she was ill and she said with utter sincerity, Thank you Mummy, as if I had just saved her from a bear pit. (Not a monkey pit, though- she'd enjoy that).


Wednesday, December 02, 2015

Lost for Words

I have resisted recent blogging because I am increasingly bewildered by what I see as the utterly self-defeating nature of the current news events.

But today, on the day when 'Britain' may decide to go to war again, I can't just leave my blog at the previous post about a toy monkey. I mean, come on, folks: this is just madness. 

I am so against the bombing that I feel as if I belong in another world with friends who agree. How can anybody think bombing will lead to peace? It will only lead to more violence and we have to take a radically different approach, no matter how challenging that is.

I hate the way Jeremy Corbyn is being perpetually trashed for just being a principled man who doesn't want to drop bombs and seeks other ways to tackle these atrocities. I hate the way that Scotland has to join in the bombing and this was exactly the kind of reason I wanted an independent Scotland...so we wouldn't have to join in horrific wars.

Meanwhile, no one is taking the Climate Change summit seriously enough. And The BBC seems to be so supportive of the unquestioned main-stream, right-wing status quo. So, I'm kind of lost right now, with all this stuff.

I'll sign the online petitions, email my MP and go and get some lunch. I'm watching BBC news and I'm scunnered at the hostile Tory brawling in the house of commons. They are not even letting him speak....


Sunday, November 08, 2015

What you see, what you don't see.



I saw that I was buying a pack of 3 Microfibre cloths for multi-purpose domestic use. I did not see that Monkey would rush to claim then as new 'beach towels.'