Tag Archives: Happiness

We Are A Grandmother

5 Dec

Glory Boy, proving that children have their uses: providing us with more children; the kind we can spoil, give back, and let get away with all the things we forbade their parents to do.

The post title: I think Margaret Thatcher was misunderstood in this instance. My bet is that in her excitement, she meant to say either, ‘We are grandparents’ or, ‘I am a grandmother’ but got the two muddled up and ended up using the Royal ‘We’.

Becoming a grandparent is rather like being royal, after all: someone else does the behind the scenes work; we just have to show up and be applauded.

Here’s my beautiful new grandson: now let the applause begin.

Why The Globe Is The Best Theatre In The World

13 Aug
Shakespeare's Globe, London (rebuilt 1997)

Shakespeare’s Globe, London (rebuilt 1997) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

We interrupt our scheduled post to bring you this breaking news:

The Globe rocks.

Before we went to London, the Hub phoned the Globe on the QT and asked them, as it was my fiftieth birthday treat, if they would arrange for the cast to sign my pre-paid-for Macbeth programme.

The Globe said it would see what it could do.

I used my voucher to collect my programme in the shop instead of the box office, not knowing about the Hub’s request.

The Hub asked me about my programme when I got home: cue sadness all round when the plot was discovered to have gone awry.

The Globe, being the Best Theatre In The World, wasn’t having that and, without a word from us, popped the programme in the post.  It arrived this morning.

The Globe really does rock.  And so does the Hub.

Click on the photos to see close ups.

I LOVE London!

11 Aug
London was brilliant.  I make no such claim about my photography.

London was brilliant. I make no such claim about my photography.

London was brilliant.  

In 35 hours we managed to visit/see/cross/meet the Tower of London including the Crown Jewels, Tower Bridge, the Globe (of course), loads of street musicians, St Paul’s, two fellas being not very good on stunt bikes, the Millennium Bridge, the worst pizza ever made, a novelist, Regent Street, Eros, Piccadilly, a VERY fluid Macbeth (never wore so much foreign spit in my life), friendly southerners (really) and Bill Nighy!

Details to follow.

It’s My 4th Blogaversary!

1 Jul

Technically, it was yesterday, but I forgot to post about it (this morning’s joke refers).

It’s hard to believe I have been blogging for four years, but I have: 2561 posts’ worth.  You wouldn’t think there was that much nonsense in the world, would you?

Despite the teeth falling out of my mouth and feeling generally unwell and forgetting to do the kind of stuff I do every day, the blogaversary crowns a rather good week:

  • I had a poetry reading
  • I had a poem accepted for publication
  • My son made me burst with pride
  • My other son phoned home, which made me burst with happiness
  • I have a new secondhand couch in the lounge AND we managed to get rid of the old secondhand couch on the same day so it wasn’t lying around the bottom of the stairs blocking access in case of fire
  • My friend sold her house and found a new one so I don’t have to worry about her
  • I had a huge stats bump on Saturday after a ten-month slump
  • I lost another kilo which brings my total loss in one month to five kilos
  • I had my first Have you lost weight? query

Happy Blogaversary to me!

I Could Be Happy

2 Feb

I have had a happy week

Just small things, like getting my own writing space (am I boring you yet?) and the sun is out this morning (am I amazing you yet?).  

Small things count; and I count every one of them.

I wish you many small things

Have a lovely weekend!

Go here for more Six Word Saturdays.

I Feel Like Dancing

18 Oct

The first rule of self-promotion is to keep your audience in the loop, so here’s me being loopy:

The first edit of Apartheid’s All Right If You’re White is finished!

You know, my book of poetry memoir about my time in South Africa during and after Apartheid.  Pay attention, people.  How can I self-promote if you’re not listening?

I say ‘first edit’ but it has been edited to the nth degree.  The first poem was probably written about 1992.  My skills have improved a little since then and the poem is probably quite different to how it started life.  Poems are never finished; they are simply polished to the level of my ability.

The poems first appeared in public on a short-lived blog dedicated to them.  I added the memoir for context.  That would have been that but Viv nagged me to gather and edit them for publication.  Her reward is to critique the finished product.  Pseu is also being punished.  Thank you, ladies.

I feel like dancing because it has taken about six months (and twenty years) to get this far.  Summer interrupted; visitors interrupted; new sheds interrupted; illness interrupted…i.e. I did anything but work on it.  

I write, therefore I procrastinate.

My intention was to self-publish, as you know, but Viv insists that I first try submitting the collection to unwary publishers.  Look out for a slew of despairing posts on yet another rejection.  

I write, therefore editors assassinate.

Once Viv and Pseu have done their evil but essential work, I will re-edit and begin submitting.  Look out for my next post on the subject in 2014.


I might as well get all the poetry stuff out of the way in one post:

You may remember in the summer I had three poems displayed on the Bolton Arts Trail.  All of the poems on the trail have been gathered together into one anthology.  Look:

I was excited to find one of my poems was first in the anthology – that’s never happened before.  It was dumb luck, of course: the poems are arranged alphabetically, according to the name of the shop in which they were displayed.  

I’m a writer; I need dumb luck.  And a little dancing.

In fact, that’s what I did when my edit was done: I put on some Mango Groove and gave it some wellly around the living room.  And I’m going to do that every time I complete a book stage.

Unhappy Anniversary

15 Aug
South Africa (orthographic projection)
Image via Wikipedia

Imagine it’s August 2021 – what is your life like?

If ever there was an exercise in futility…. 

On this very day, Fifteenth August, 1996 – fifteen years ago – I arrived back in the UK after fourteen years in South Africa, with two children, two prams, eleven trunks full of stuff I wouldn’t see for eight months, six suitcases, and the expectation that the Hub would follow me and we would have no trouble finding jobs, a home and a happy new life.

The Hub followed me, so that was something.

We found ourselves homeless and jobless; he got sick with CFS/ME; our money ran out; and three of our parents died within eighteen months of each other.  Did you ever stand in a hurricane and wonder how you got there?  Me neither, but I bet I know how it feels.

Work for a better future, definitely; but don’t expect it.  Expectations are a waste of time.  Dreaming is a waste of time.  Live in the now, and make the most of it; be grateful for what you have – a happy marriage; great kids; much laughter; a roof over your head and food, however burnt, on the table.

I’d rather look back on laughter and good times than hope for it to come, because there are no guarantees.

Weekly Photo Challenge: One

27 Apr

 One happy day in 5576 of them (so far):

I Could Be Happy

8 Oct

I was stuck for something to write about today, until I took a look at this week’s Plinky Prompts email and it suggested I list ten things that make me happy.  I thought it would be easy, but it’s not.  Let’s take a minute to think about it.  My immediate reaction was ‘Maltesers’ and ‘Watching The West Wing‘ (the Hub & kids came waaaay down the list because they are too much like hard work) and all of those things that give us momentary pleasure.  But that’s not the same thing at all.  I found a great video on You Tube by  Videojug called How to be happy, which gives us seven simple steps to happiness.   However, I wonder just how happy Videojug is because he won’t share, so you’ll have to visit it yourself.

The best advice he gives is to ‘turn off that Morrissey record’.  He’s absolutely right: stop listening to misery and you’re halfway there already.  My Mum requested Whitney Houston’s version of I Will Always Love You to be played at her funeral, and I sobbed for the whole four minutes (give me a break; my mother had just died), so I want something cheerful at my funeral that will get everyone dancing (apart from the Hub, who will need no help, having been doing a jig to MLK’s Free at last! speech from the moment I take my last drool).  Maybe something by Mango Groove:

I think New Orleanians have it right, with their musical parades:

That’s what I call a funeral.

Not sure how I went from happiness to funerals; back to the subject at hand: I had to really think about what makes me happy because it comes from within and in my case will be hidden by chocolate; but I reckon for me, happiness comes from being true to myself.  I love my family; I love God; I love to write; I love to make people laugh; I love to laugh myself; I love to laugh at myself.  That’s enough for me. 

What makes you happy?


The prompt for Big Tent this week was to borrow a line from someone else’s poem and use it as a springboard.  This is something I often do when I’m stuck for something to write; but it didn’t work for me this week (which I’m not happy about), so here’s more from the archives, inspired more by style than substance.  You can check out Roger McGough at  http://www.rogermcgough.org.uk/

My Favourite Poet

I’ve been reading Roger McGough.
I hope he makes a lot of dough.
If I ever meet him, I’ll bow down low;
Or perhaps I’ll bough down lough.


How To Annoy A Poet

Roger McGough
would be hacked off
if he could only see
the liberties I’ve taken
with his excellent poetry. 

Alas, I’m a poet with no audience.
At least they can’t be boredience.


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