Tag Archives: reading

Nine Two Five

It occurred to me earlier today that I haven’t done a full days work in two years, I’ve had a baby in that time but really, where did the time go? It seems like it was yesterday that I was clocking up a 50 hour week, watching the sun come up and set again while sat at my desk, calling my Dad to prevent me having a panic attack when I had to go down into the dark, scary basement on facilities checks and drinking far too much coffee that almost cost half my weekly wage. Now I’m lucky if I manage to get all my ironing done, take my youngest to play-group and make sure dinner is at least in the oven when Geordie gets home from work.

I’m pretty sure my CV states I am ‘a great co-ordinator’ and ‘organisation is my passion’ (or some similarly ridiculous buzz words) So where has it gone? Did I lose it along with my pregnancy baby weight? Did it slowly diminish while I spent hour upon hour watching Mr Bloom’s Nursery? Or is it still there lurking in the back of my mind behind the lists of size 5+ Pampers and Persil Non-Bio? I really hope it’s the latter as this realisation today has kick-started a plan of action……to go back to work.

Bog Off Eamonn

Bog Off Eamonn

I’ve heard many people say that it’s easier to get a job if you already have one? I’m not really sure I understand the logic there? Is that because you have recent, relevant experience or more chance of a glowing reference from your employer? Maybe I’m discounting this notion because I haven’t learned anything new or relevant to PR or marketing in over two years and I don’t want to believe that I am going to struggle before I even get started. Bearing this in mind I am considering a refresher course but I’m unsure about what I should refresh? I can (just about) speak, write and read English and while I am no Carol Vorderman I can still recite the times tables.

Working in media generally means having to completely submerge yourself in current affairs, so maybe my refresher course can be self-taught? I simply have to reinstate my subscription to The Times, switch Cbeebies over to BBC Parliament, CNN or Sky News (I really can’t stand Eamonn Holmes) and re-follow all those media bods on Twitter who are in the thick of the action around the globe? Also I’m thinking that a volunteer placement with a local paper might help me with the lack of recent experience issue…being the new girl again at 30 should be interesting!

The catalyst behind all of this is that I am missing a sense of achievement, I made it to 30, not without a few scrapes but it has taken me until now right now in fact, to realise what I really want to do with myself. Now I just have to make it happen. Maybe I can have it all, it just takes a little patience and a lot of hard work. Wish me luck!

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The Lending Library

Following on from my earlier post/rant about lack of money I am reminded of a saying my ex father-in-law used to say when I was off work on maternity leave ‘Another day at the lending library is it?’ Meaning, another day whiling away the hours doing nothing basically. Who’d have thought that I would go on to focus on the lending library quite so much 7 years later?

Cover of "George's Marvellous Medicine"

George’s Marvellous Medicine

I have now read every single children’s bookin the 0-3 and 4-7 age group at the local library (for research purposes of course) as my own short series of tales for the 4-7’s has finally begun to take shape. This is the first step in a very long process and I’ve still got some work to do before getting myself a literary agent however I wanted to take a minute to say thank you to a few people who have helped me to push forward with my writing dream and make it a reality.

You’ll not be surprised to read that my first thanks are to Geordie and our beautiful little girls. The girls have given me so much inspiration and they’ve often trashed what I thought was my best idea with the blink of an innocent eye. Geordie is just well…Geordie, always super positive and encouraging me to do random things such as rowing (?!) for the sake of gaining a fresh approach to my writing, I wouldn’t have even started the blog had it not been for him.

Thanks to my lovely sister Caroline for all the free advertising she’s done for the blog, and for allowing me to recall some of our childhood mishaps for all the world to read. To my super talented brother Andrew for agreeing to provide some illustrations for the books on completion, thank you and I will be calling in that favour very soon!

To all the people on Facebook that always answer my crazy research questions and who take the time to read the blog. Watching those viewing figures gives me a ton of hope so thank you very much, I hope it’s made you smile if not laugh occasionally? Last but definitely by no means least (I really mean that) thank you to anyone who has ever read the blog as this site is basically writing practise and experience to help me to break into the big bad world of publishing.

Wish me luck!

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I Have A Dream

I was talking to my Dad yesterday, he was telling me that he’d had a rubbish night’s sleep as he had dreamed about my Nan who passed away 8 years ago. It would have been her 97th birthday last week had she battled through a broken hip as she had countless heart attacks and strokes. The last few nights I’ve had some random dreams too, random but very vivid. The most interesting one was EastEnders character Jack (Actor Scott Malsen) pursuing me through Venice desperate for a date?! I watch EastEnders around twice a month and rely on my Mum to fill me in on the story lines that I’ve missed so as I’m not an avid viewer I though my subconscious choice of love interested was indeed random?! PS I knew it was Venice because of the gondolas!

When I was about 6 I watched an episode of Casualty (yes it’s been going that long) that featured a patient who looked a bit like Frankenstein after sustaining a nasty head injury. For about two weeks afterwards I had nightmares that he was in the cupboard under the stairs and was trying to break free to get me! See vivid, it’s 24 years later and I still remember it well. Also around this time I received a What’s New Scooby Doo? annual for my birthday, one of the cartoon strip stories involved a rope bridge and the villain of choice this time was a very angry giant gorilla. Once again my over active imagination decided we’d be trying to escape the giant gorilla who was shaking the nuts out of the rope bridge as I held on for dear life. Stupid Scooby Doo.

Don’t you just love those dreams where you fall off a cliff or bridge and wake up a split second before you hit the ground? No me neither. Geordie certainly doesn’t care for being kicked/kneed/slapped in various body parts in the middle of the night as I simulate ninja like moves to combat the rapidly approaching ground. As a Mum it breaks my heart when my girls wake in the night in floods of tears because they’re had a nightmare. My youngest stays asleep most of the time and just whimpers which is particularly heart wrenching to hear. My eldest comes tearing into the room as if whatever horrific monster disturbed her sleep really was under her bed. Although by the state of her bedroom most days the monster would do himself more damage standing on Lego or Lalaloopsy dolls before he reached the door, good get away plan for a 6-year-old.

Sweet Dreams!

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I Owe You

An apology. Not only have I not blogged for four days, I have also severely dented the integrity of my blog and my ethos of ‘Procrastination is for Losers’. Don’t judge me just yet, it is only a minor blip in my otherwise shining record (?!) and it’s all because of that wicked Mr Grey.

I read Fifty Shades of Grey last week and struggled to finished the book as it was far too long. I said that I wouldn’t read the other two books in the trilogy, even the incredibly rude, pornographic-like text about the delectable Mr Grey’s talents wont be enough for me to endure another 1000 pages. Other’s have reviewed the book on lots of different sites and stated the repetitive declarations of ‘Oh My’ became annoying and prematurely gave up the ghost.

I was happy with my decision and didn’t spend much time pondering the next instalment of the story, until I saw my friend on Friday afternoon who, after reading my blog told me the second book was much better and that she was totally engrossed in the story. So being the sheep that I am, I immediately down loaded Fifty Shades Darker and once again ignored my kids getting up to mischief for a few hours while I read on. I know for a fact that I will now complete the trilogy, mainly because Fifty Shades Freed, the third title, caught my attention before the other two. I would already be on the third book by now as I read fairly quickly, however there was an incident.

If you read my blog regularly you’ll know I am gearing up to complete the 5×50 Challenge in September and have begun to lose a little weight and implement exercise into my daily life. I am now managing to burn at least 500 calories a day and eating much more healthily too. Sadly this effort was not enough to save my Kindle.

I was lying on my mum’s living room floor propped up on pillows, (this is my most comfortable place to stop my ever-lasting prolapsed disc for throbbing like hell) reading about Mr Grey and his pursuit of Miss Steele when I put down my Kindle to see to my baby who had woken up from a nap on the sofa next to me. In turning to pick her up my beloved Kindle was caught in the crossfire and was squished into LCD heaven by my considerably large behind. I cried out! I could see three or four lines of text behind a series of angry black lines that despite me pressing every button in every possible sequence, refused to budge.

In a blind panic I called Amazon, who I’d like to commend! They have the most professional, friendly and polite customer service employees anywhere. Luckily I am covered through my insurance and my new Kindle is winging its way to me as I type.

During my boring train journey north yesterday I missed my Kindle (or more so Mr Grey)and even resorted to picking up Fifty Shades Darker in paperback in two different book shops, mulled it over and then put it back. For all I didn’t really warm to the first book, the anticipation of finishing the story is now almost unbearable.

So to you my faithful readers, I apologize. Like a lot of people I have been captured by a wicked story line of love, sex and money. My integrity lies redundant on the floor. What can I do to win you back?

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A Few Words

Everyone reads something everyday whether it’s intentional or not, we see the words on the shampoo bottles in the shower, the brand name on the tea bags at breakfast or the number and destination of the bus as it arrives, usually late at the bus stop. I love to read, and now that my eldest daughter is a confident reader it’s made the printed word much more interesting. It’s impossible to have certain conversations in her presence now as she can spell the words we don’t want her to hear, and at the train station she will quite happily ask about bowel cancer and Tampax, thanks to the large advertisements on the wall. I consider myself lucky that when it comes to pocket money day my not-so-little-one will always chose a book, magazine or Top Trumps before the usual carrier bag full of sweets and it’s never a surprise to find her curled up on the sofa reading Horrid Henry with the TV on full blast in the background, kids eh?

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Geordie doesn’t read and I can’t help but think this has a direct effect on his opinions and attitudes towards certain subjects. He has spent 10 years in his job reading manuals on circuitry and such things and can tinker away fixing things with the best of them, which leads me to believe that if you take the time to read you can master almost any subject.

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As a teenager reading bored me to tears. I had a real problem with being forced to read Macbeth and Romeo & Juliet at school as well as anthology of poetry, I was marched into the head of of English the day before deadline and asked why I was yet to produce three essays on the text. Looking back now I wish I had told the truth and said because you are forcing me to read something I don’t enjoy and find incredibly boring instead of saying something pathetic and along the lines of ‘Oh I forgot’. I went home that night and wrote three essays which helped to secure me an A grade in GCSE English. Who knew cramming actually worked?

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I started my love affair with reading pouring over Danielle Steele novels believing that if I lived in America one of those fanciful story lines would totally happen to me. Luckily I moved on to Stephen King quite quickly and got the biggest reality check that literature can throw at you, I never want to experience anything he has written that’s for sure. I think my parents and step sister Beth are responsible for my change of heart, I read the same crime thiller books as my Mum and Dad so we have a sort of family lending library going on. I dread teaching them how to use a Kindle so they’re both getting books for Christmas again!

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Do you like to read? What’s your favourite book?

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Fifty Shades of ?

I finished E.L James’ Fifty Shades of Grey last night and I’ve had some time to think about the characters and sleep on the filthy plot line. This is not a spoiler, no plot line revealed just my opinion on the book, so you can read on…..

Pain Rating Scale

I downloaded the title from Amazon on Kindle and settled down on Sunday to read in full view of Geordie and the kids running around causing havoc. After the first couple of chapters I was bored, but in trying to brush off the negative reviews I’s read I ploughed on to chapter six. Chapter six is round about where the text gets very graphic and I began to feel uncomfortable reading such intimate details in front of my kids, lucky for me that they don’t even know what a Kindle is! I was packing for my 300 mile round trip on Sunday afternoon and decided to leave my Kindle at home, not because I would feel self-conscious reading such a raunchy book in public, but because other than those sexy scenes it was a real struggle to finish. Lot’s of people have written reviews about how the text is repetitive and a little unbelievable in places, ‘Oh My‘ and ‘the way his pants hang from the hip in that way’ feature quite heavily but I think when faced with a ‘Room of Pain’ and little ‘Oh My’ wouldn’t go a miss!

In my opinion the book is too long by around 200 pages. On reaching chapter 19 I tweeted that once again I was struggling to see it through and was met with many responses such as ‘No carry on it gets better’ ‘You have to know how it ends’ etc. So at 1:34am this morning I finally finished the book and fell into an unsatisfied sleep. The ending is also a let down in my humble opinion and I have no desire whatsoever to read Fifty Shades Darker or Fifty Shades Freed to complete the trilogy.

When I’m reading a book I fully immerse myself in the story line, washing goes unwashed, carpets unhoovered you get the idea. Today I feel a bit annoyed with myself as I have some serious chores to do and the book is forgotten. I am returning to my ever faithful Peter Robinson and Peter James titles from today, their story lines stay with you for days, whether you like it or not, and once you’ve read about Banks and Grace well I have learned that you really shouldn’t stray.

My advice to those intrigued about Fifty Shades of Grey, buy it on Kindle its less than £3, that way you won’t feel short-changed if your left hoovering in a mood.

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