Thursday, 18 April 2019

Still here...

Cooee! Checking in for my annual blog post. Hehehe.

Nothing says Bank Holiday weekend quite like a stint on the A55, does it?

So, this is where I will be tomorrow, no fish and chips (and gravy - because I can) at Everland (sob) and definitely no Wrexham lager (boo). My Slimming World consultant asked me what excuse I had planned for not drinking. I'm toying with antibiotics, rather than pregnancy? Because I have this terrible habit of tempting fate, and knowing my luck, just as my 'baby' hits his teens, I'll end up starting all over again with another little surprise. The Perimenopausal Mum. Although... that sounds like a cool blog name, no?

Hopefully we'll get the win, after a bit of a shaky start this season. It's promising glorious weather, so we'll arrive early and help to set up. Well, Mr G will help, I will stand around hindering and looking wistfully at the bar whilst clutching a can of Pepsi Max.

The in laws are coming tomorrow evening. I haven't prepared for them, other than buying a kilo of bacon and a pound of mince. Standards are slipping. I'll run a kitchen wipe around the toilet before they arrive.

Just because I haven't been posting, doesn't mean that Mr G hasn't been coming out with howlers.

Mr G: Can I have a bumble...?
Walks away
Me: Huh?
I follow him into the kitchen
Me: What did you just say? Did you say... bumble?
Mr G: Yes
Me: What did you mean?
Mr G: I can't even say it.
Me: What did you mean?
Mr G: I walked in and I saw them. Doughnuts. And I thought 'Mmmm. Bumbles'.
(And yes, when he said 'Mmmm. Bumbles' - he sounded like Homer Simpson. Bless).

Mr G: I think I'm going to have some sex with my chicken.
Me: What? The f**k?
Mr G: I meant lettuce. Lettuce.

Mr G: Do you know, there's four different brands of bird in that tree?
Me: Brands?
Mr G: Yeah. Chaffinch, blue tit, robin and blackbird.
Me: Brands?

He's hard work but I bloody love him to bits. Just as well, really.

Thursday, 26 July 2018

Summer Holidays

Long gone are the days when the words 'Six weeks off school' used to strike fear into my heart. These days, the only place that I'm getting struck is in my bank account, as the four of them bugger off out with their respective girlfriends and boyfriend, and friends. "Mum, can I go to..." "Mum, can I have train fare..." "Mum, can I go shopping..." and of course, Mum gets some reprieve, because Mama ain't no fool, and she never learned to drive. "Dad, can you take me...". So, the Bank of Mum and Dad's Taxi's are in full swing, and we're only in the first week of the holiday!

We are off glamping this weekend. Unfortunately, due to some awkward buggers booking the pods for one night on a Saturday (Why? Why do people do this?) we have Sunday to Wednesday at Pentreclawdd Farm in Oswestry, where we stayed last Easter. We also have a family wedding at the end of August, so we had to prioritise, and a holiday this summer wasn't do-able. Not only financial, but also time wise. So, Mr G and I put our thinking caps on, and we've tried to cram as much into the three days as possible, making sure that everyone gets to do something that is fun for them.

So, on Sunday, at the crack of dawn, we are off to Wrexham. There's a double header at Queensway on Sunday, where Devon Sharks take on North Wales Origin at 11 am, as a curtain raiser to the North Wales Crusaders v Workington Town match, which kicks off at 2.30 pm. Really looking forward to both of those games, but even more so, I am looking forward to leaving after the first match, and making a quick trip into town, to get our fortnightly fish and chip fix at Everland. If you're ever in Wrexham, this chippy is highly recommended. Lovely staff and the the food is gorgeous. We really have made some wonderful friends in Wrexham, people are so friendly there. Mr G and I are both really tempted to move there, or closer to there. We've said that in four or five years time, once the youngest has finished school, then it will be time to please ourselves. He'll be 60 then, and more than ready to slow down. There just seems to be less and less to do around here. You have to drive miles to see a film, to go bowling, to do some decent shopping, to get a Nandos! I've been a Mum since I was nineteen, and I think that by then, the wrong side of forty, it will be time to do something for myself. Before I get grandchildren sprung on me.

On Monday, after I have cooked us all a full English to set us up for the day, we're going to take the boys to Blue Planet in Ellesmere Port and in the afternoon we're going to take them to Flip Out Chester. Both boys have been on at me for ages, wanting to go. I've booked a two hour session for them there, so that should be fun.

On Tuesday, after more bacon and egg, we're going to go to the British Ironwork Centre. This is somewhere that Mr G has wanted to go to for a while; being a former metalworker he finds things like this really interesting. Then in the afternoon, Adam has requested a shopping trip around Wrexham, as he turns 12 on Saturday, and he wants to get some new clothes with his birthday money. When he's spent up, we're going to take them ten pin bowling, and to get some food, a cheeky Nando's is probably high on their list. Then to round off our day in Wrexham, I would like to go to Alyn Waters Country Park for a walk around, and hopefully burn off some calories in readiness for the Chicken Doner that I am going to be munching through that evening. But that is dependent on time (and how hungry I am!).

So, granted, not the most exciting of breaks away, but hopefully there will be a little something for everyone. Plenty of walking, reading and rugby for me. Metal stuff and rugby for Mr G and bowling and bouncing and clothes shopping for the boys. I'm leaving the house in the capable hands of my eldest and his girlfriend (yes, that was sarcasm, they're both University students). 

Monday, 19 March 2018

Beast From The East 2.0 Actually Strikes

We don't get snow, where we live. You know how you see all these places on the news, that snow has brought to a complete standstill? The whole country could be under a foot of snow, and you can guarantee that the most we'll get is a light dusting of the stuff. Like someone has taken a giant sieve and dusted us with icing sugar. So, every time we hear the tabloid press predicting the next ice age, or another six weeks of Winter, we do tend to take it with a huge pinch of salt in my neck of the woods. Even the weather report, when applying the forecasts to Wales, say 'all counties except Anglesey'. So, with that in mind, we weren't too concerned with how the weather our end was going to affect our trip to Queensway on Sunday, but more how the weather was there, and everywhere else in between. We've altered the route we take since last season, rather than using the A55, which Mr G hates driving on, we come off at St Asaph, and go through Mold and little villages on the outskirts of Wrexham. It's a nicer drive, a shorter drive in miles, even if it adds a little bit of time onto the journey. But also a prospectively more dangerous, sheltered drive in adverse weather.

Six o'clock in the bloody morning he wakes me up. 

Mr G: I don't think we're going anywhere today.

We were covered in the bloody stuff. Covered. Yeah, so thanks for waking me up earlier than I would have woken up had we been going, to tell me that we weren't. 

Social media promised a pitch inspection at 9 am. We sat looking at our screens, looking outside, looking at weather reports, looking at live webcam feeds, checking traffic groups on Facebook. The snow was really coming down outside. News was slow coming from Queensway, the Featherstone fans coaches had been taken off the road as it was deemed too dangerous to come across the Pennines, the team were in their bus ready to make the journey and then, it was finally called off. Just before 11 am. I was sat in my pyjamas, waiting, while Mr G was muttering "I bet this goes ahead. I bet this goes ahead."

'Summer' rugby... 

And rescheduled for Tuesday. In Yorkshire. So we won't get to see the rescheduled match. It's a bit gutting but there's nothing that can be done. The fixture needs to be played asap, there's no free weekend before the next round of the Challenge Cup, we already have one postponed league match to catch up on, and we play Oldham next Sunday as well. I just hope that there's a Youtube live stream of the match, so we can watch it at home. 

So, next Sunday we try again.

In other news. Decorating. Christ on the cross. I'm sure everyone knows that point, in their home, where everything needs doing again? It happens within about a year of finally finishing your home. Yeah. That's where we're at right now. We've had shower panels delivered, as there's issues with the tiles in the bathroom and we figured it would be easier to keep clean. We've had a B&Q order delivered with paint and wallpaper. And then I realise that this week heralds Mercury Retrograde.

Now, I'm not superstitious per se. I don't salute single magpies. I would walk under a ladder if it was the most sensible route. I'd rather not open an umbrella in the house because... why would you? My porch is smaller than an umbrella anyway, I'd be stuck. But I don't think it would cause bad luck. However, Mercury Retrograde is always one thing that I do take heed of. It's astrological not superstition. 

The lovely AstroTwins explain it perfectly in their article Mercury Retrograde Explained. But in a nutshell, electronics go on the blink and people from your past tend to show up.

Now, I've lost count of how many computers I have lost during Mercury Retrograde. Enough so that I know that it's not a coincidence. So, I told a couple of my friends, who were pretty sceptical about the whole thing. They'd never heard of it. Told them to back up their data. Don't buy any new electrics or electronics or make big ticket purchases during the time. And watch out for old friends or ex boyfriends to show up. I personally have never had any ex show up during Mercury Retrograde, thinking about it, there's only one that would be anywhere near welcome to ever darken my doorstep again and I can't ever see that happening (I'm a people person, can you tell?) so it's probably a good thing that Mercury Retrograde affects me electronically and not emotionally. However, in our group chat, these sceptical friends, phones were going on the blink, laptops were, and in the piece de resistance, one of the ladies' ex boyfriends contacted her out of the blue on Facebook. "I told you so." I said. 

So I've just messaged our group this morning with this.

"Mercury Retrograde Thursday. Heads up. Back up. Block exes."

But anyway - back at the ranch, my point is this. You're not meant to start something new during that time. It's just asking for trouble. Especially when what we need to do involves mauling with a shower. So I have DIY stuff clogging up rooms that I have to hold Mr G up from using until some way into April. I can't see that happening, can you? 

I need a grand scale distraction, that's going to last about a month, minimum. Any ideas?

No. Me neither. There is the re argument at play here too. That we're not decorating, we're redecorating. So it might be ok... right?

Famous last words...

Friday, 16 March 2018

Yearly Catch Up

It's been ages since I last blogged. Last summer. I do say it repeatedly but time really does seem to be getting away from me, the older I'm getting. Plus, this is only really being done for the benefit of my own family and close friends. Preserving the madness for a future generation. Speaking of, look at these beauties. So grown up now. Three of them are dating. I've never felt so bloody old in all of my life.

Mr G had another op! I know, fancy that... And this time, it fell on the 6th December. So as you can imagine, Christmas was sorted by the 5th December. This year, I did Christmas like a proverbial boss. It was bought, wrapped, hidden, bagged, cooked, and frozen. And what little wasn't, there was Amazon Prime, Amazon Pantry and Mum and Dad. So, we had a nice Christmas, but it felt a little... flat, I suppose. There wasn't any of the last minute rushing around. I was just waiting for Christmas to come for weeks, and it took the shine off it, somewhat. 

Mr G couldn't drive for 6 - 8 weeks after the op, he was going stir crazy, I was just going bog standard crazy. 5 weeks and 6 days after the op, I could see him getting twitchy.

Mr G: I can drive tomorrow.
Me: Er, no? The six to eight weeks is a guideline, not a target?

I managed to buy Mr G a surprise Christmas present, and it was a bargain too. A Tassimo coffee machine for £39.99 on a deal on Amazon. I don't normally get bargains like that. And it is, quote unquote “The best present I've ever had”. Now, bearing in mind that I've bought him a Summer House and a set of drums... perhaps I should have just saved my money? He's now obsessed with Latte Macchiato (a crystal meth habit would be cheaper to fund) and I have fallen in love with Mocha. Mocha is the new Merlot.

In November last year I completed my third year of NaNoWriMo, and somehow I have managed to drag my one story out into four separate books. Two finished, one nearly done and one work in progress.


Currently looking into self publishing the first of them, but there's a long way to go yet and a lot to think about. It's really funny how I had a clear vision of how things were going to turn out, and some how, some way, the villain of the piece has turned into one of the heroes, albeit a flawed one, and the couple that I ripped apart in the first few lines of the first draft in 2015 have spent the last two years clawing their way back to each other. Curse you plot bunnies. Curse you.

Mr G: So... what are they about?
Me: Hard to say, really. Normal life. Not chick lit as such. Not fluffy. But funny in parts.
Mr G: Are they filth?

Charming! What's he trying to say?

In July we had a lovely day and evening out in Manchester, a mucky overnighter, where we went to see Sister Act in The Palace Theatre (so that's another thing off my 40 before 40 list – which, seeing as I'm now 42... I am going to have to adapt and amend this into a 50 before 50 list!). 

Fish and Chips (what else?) and a glass of Vino in Yates, Oxford Road

Followed by a few scoops in Thirsty Scholar

We stayed in the Northern Quarter of the city, had a lovely meal out, a few pints and it was lovely just getting away, me and him. Sister Act was fantastic, thanks M&A for (yet another!) wonderful birthday present! 

This year we have lots of rugby league matches to attend. After a somewhat dismal season last year, where it seemed that there were very few home games, this year every team will play each other home and away. 

It hasn't been a bad start to the season, two pre-season friendlies, against West Wales, which we won...

... and Saint Helens, which we didn't, but we put in a great performance against a team which had current Super League players in.

Altogether now... ♪ We've got the beeeeeeeeest kicker in the league ♫

Including the verra handsome former Wigan Warriors player Matty Smith. 

Oooh 'ello!

A home draw to London Skolars, 24 - 24...

and a storming Challenge Cup tie against Keighley Cougars, where we came back from 6-24 down at half time to win 28-24 and progress to the Fourth Round...

… which is this Sunday! We've drawn Featherstone, at home, so that's a trip to Queensway (weather permitting, Beast from the East part deux!). 

Mum is going to babysit the boys, as apparently the fans can get a little rowdy? So, it's an early start, pop into Everland for some fish and chips before we get to the stadium, then go and see if we can be of assistance setting up. And have a few cheeky pints of Wrexham lager. I had to laugh when we arrived last month and saw the new sign erected on the stands.

Mr G tutted, turned to me and said:

Mr G: You've probably paid for that sign. Or rather, I have...

What can I say.

Speaking of alcohol, or rather, no alcohol. In October we went to Crusaders Awards evening. This time it was slightly different to the previous year, which was at a Hotel. This year, it was in a community centre type place in Gwersyllt. We booked a Premier Inn not far away, in Gresford and we had another mucky overnighter. Although, it has to be said, the STATE that Mr G was in when we arrived back at the hotel, nothing remotely mucky happened...

It went downhill rapidly from here...

Well. What an evening. Probably one of the best nights out that I have ever had in my life. 

Mr G and my favourite player Danny Price

Mr G got drunk, so drunk, that he hasn't touched a drop of alcohol since. Not even a glass of vino with his Christmas dinner. Not even a pint on New Year's Eve. Nor our anniversary. Nor his birthday. He hasn't had an alcoholic drink since 21st October. He doesn't drink much anyway, but it's just been a flat out 'NO.' ever since. If I was writing this on my iPad, I would insert a laughing emoji here 

I have never seen him so ill, so hungover, in my life. 

Or so mortified the next morning, when I told him that when we'd reached the hotel, he'd got out of the cab that we'd shared with friends and after me nudging him to free the moths from his wallet and pay for the thing, he chucked a fiver at Martin, said 'See you tomorrow' before walking off ahead of me and ending up on the wrong floor...

I asked him if he thought that the taxi had taken us back to the 1980's, the last time that a taxi, at one in the morning, going that distance would have cost a fiver?

Live by the sword...

A hangover that lasted from the Sunday, until the Wednesday. And, you couldn't make this up. We were walking up a side street from the car park into town on the Wednesday morning.

Mr G: I'm only just starting to feel better now, today.

I heard a noise and looked around to find this Wrexham Lager wagon, Wrexham lager being the drink that he had got so drunk on at the awards night, parking up behind us. Never seen one anywhere near our neck of the woods before. I didn't even know any pubs sold it locally.

Oh, how I laughed...

Mr G took one look at it, retched and said 'I'm never drinking again. Ever.”

He turned 56 and celebrated with lattes and a couple of lovely meals out. Table Table and Cafe Doda

We do occasionally eat other things...

Snickers Milkshake. Trying something new AND blowing my daily calorie intake with one drink!

Hog Roast Wellington. Lush!

Cafe Doda Double Burger for the birthday boy

Cafe Doda Lamb and Mint Burger - best burger ever.

And I'll leave you with this 'Family WTF?' moment from last August. Camping in Llangollen. I was sat outside with my wine and Kindle, and Mr G was lying down, having a minute, on his campbed. Like so...

Ryan walked to the door, looked at him and uttered these immortal words...

Ryan: 'Paint me, like a Latvian hillbilly...'

I don't know. I really couldn't tell you. And on that note, I'm off to work on my 50 before 50 list!

Friday, 18 August 2017

Sad but true...

... that the highlight of these summer holidays is very likely going to be our visit to go and see Jeremy Corbyn at a rally in Bangor tomorrow (in the park by Bangor Swimming Pool, 1.30 pm - 2.30 pm if anyone local is interested!). Surprisingly, it's been the only time that leaving the house this summer hasn't been met with complete apathy and the word 'no' by Ryan. And Dan, for that matter.

Me: Want to come to see Jeremy Corbyn in Bangor tomorrow?

Ryan: Oh hell yes.

Dan: Sure

Adam: Can I come?

Me: ...

We are off glamping in a couple of weeks, booked our little pod in Llangollen. My Kindle is backed up with books that I haven't had a chance to read yet (but still insist on buying...) and to be perfectly honest, I'm looking forward to a (semi) digital detox. No TV, no internet, just me, my Kindle and a nice glass, bottle, box of Shiraz. Plenty of long walks. A little back to school shopping in Wrexham. We've bought a new camping oven and it's so big that we're going to have to forego the coffin ice cooler and buy food from day to day. Either that or leave a child behind, and as tempting as that sounds... nobody's offering. But, it has a proper sized oven with two shelves so it really increases what we can cook, which will save a bit of money.

Crusaders also have a home match while we're away, against Coventry Bears on the 3rd September. Out of three matches so far we've lost two and won one and sit joint second, at the time of writing, so it can still be done!

Hopefully everyone else is having a less boring summer than we are...

Sunday, 16 July 2017

Family WTF - Part Deux

Some more WTF moments for you, I don't know how this one passed me by earlier. I have little snippets typed away on whatever word document is open at the time. There's probably loads of forgotten gems on this computer.

Original Source Tea Tree and Mint shower gel. You'd have to have been living under a rock not to know of it, and its... er... side effects. Particularly on genitalia. Male, female, it shows no discrimination, and seemingly, little mercy.

Cut to our recent break away at the in laws. Ryan takes a shower. And my husband, in his infinite wisdom, he who actually likes the... tingle of said shower gel (sadist), had only packed that. It was that, or my Raspberry and Vanilla shower gel. 'Just use mine' said Mr G. And so he did. Poor, poor Ryan.

And so our story starts off in Wigan. Approximately 9 am.

Ryan: Dad? You know that green shower gel? I'm burning.

Mr G: Yeah. It does that.

Didn't think anything more of it. Cue a (no doubt) very uncomfortable two hour car ride home. And then, at 9.30 pm, he comes downstairs and says...

Ryan: Mum? You know how when you eat spicy food, milk helps?

Me: Yes.

Ryan: Will dunking my testicles into a glass of milk help to ease the pain? They're still red...

Me: Oh my God, really?

Ryan: Yes.

Adam: Noted. I'll stick to my Lynx...

Ryan: Are there chillies in it?

Me: Not as I know of.

Ryan: The pain won't go away and it's testicling my patience.

And soooooooo I showed him that he wasn't alone in his struggle. In particular one article. And when he read the words...

“MY FLAPS WERE ON F***ING FIRE, Tingling? TINGLING? This wasn’t tingling my minge. It was starting a f***ing bush fire down there.”

... he lost it, and laughed and laughed and laughed.  Ryan now sticks to Lynx, also. Lesson learned.

And speak of the devil and he shall appear. As I type...

Ryan: Mum, imagine you were a flamingo.

Me: *blank*

Ryan: And you had pins and needles or your leg went numb.

Me: *blank*

Ryan: Because flamingos, they stand like this *stands on one leg*

Me: Go away. Please. Just go away.

Yesterday, I excelled myself in my sloppiness. A totally clean t shirt ruined within thirteen seconds of starting to eat my lunch. Rounded off with a healthy dollop of my tea. Mr G just sat watching me eat, shaking his head in bemusement...

Mr G: It is comedy gold watching you eat. You'd get less food down you, eating soup with a sieve.

He's found me a bib... which proudly proclaims '99 Problems but a Bib ain't one'.

Anyone know a good divorce lawyer?

Family WTF...

It's not easy being me sometimes.

In bed, discussing an... interesting... debate between Mr G and someone on a Facebook group that he's an admin on. By debate, I mean that a lunatic engaged with Mr G, and Mr G duly obliged...

Mr G: You know what, if they are actually able to read your private messages on these social networking sites, I bet that Martin Huckleburger is pissing himself laughing...

Me: What???  Who?

Mr G: Martin Huckleburger. The man who made Facebook.

Me: Er... Mark Zuckerberg?

Mr G: That's him.

Right. Because a twenty something billionaire has nothing better to do of an evening than trawl through private messages for shits and giggles...?

Adam has had sex education. I cannot repeat what was said there... not in print anyway. Somehow he managed to get Michael Jackson involved though. Don't. Ask.

Getting the washing in the other night before it rained, Mr G was smugly surveying his garden. He nodded towards the wooden planter that he'd scattered random seeds in.

Mr G: The flowers that will grow in there, are meant to attract cauliflowers.

Me: ...

Mr G: (quickly) Butterflies...

Talking with the children about all the acts we've seen live since we've been together...

Me: Jay Z. Kylie three times. Simply Red. The Beat.

Mr G: Cheryl Cole. (Sigh) Cheryl Cole...

Me: Kasabian.

Mr G: Incy Wincy Spider.

Me: Beg pardon?

Mr G: Incy Wincy Spider. Big Weekend?

Me: Tinie Tempah?

Mr G: That's him.

Adam and Ryan falling out spectacularly at the rugby a few months ago.

Adam: Ryan? I'll RKO you, you d*ckhead.

(I couldn't tell him off for laughing. I know you shouldn't, but it caught me off guard. I then had to Google what RKO was. And then laughed some more).

Ryan: Dad? Are tattoos like... paint? Or sewing?

Mr G: *snort*

Cait: What???

Ryan: Are tattoos like paint, or sewing?

Cait: It's ink! Bellend! (storms off)

Mr G and I having a cuddle and a kiss in the kitchen. Ryan walks in.

Ryan: I don't like where this is going.

Asking Ryan whether he took French or German in school...

Ryan: Both.

Me: Oh! We only took one in the first few years. Which language do you prefer? French or German?

Ryan: I don't know.

Me: Which one do you find easier?

Ryan: Probably German, because of all the Hitler memes.

Me: ...

Morphine moments...

Mr G: My eyelids are moving...

Mr G: My eyes are spinning...

Mr G: (completely randomly, out of the blue) Ha! That's something you've never heard. This Government talking about emigration.

Me: What??

Mr G: What? I didn't say anything.

Mr G: I'm going to bed.

Me: Ok. You go up. I'll just tidy up down here, lock up and I'll be up.

Five minutes later, Mr G appears in the hallway and scares me

Me: Jesus! You scared me. I thought you'd gone upstairs?

Mr G: I am.

Me: Er, clearly you're not?

Mr G: Where are my glasses?

Me: You're wearing them.

Mr G: Oh. I thought it was odd that I couldn't find them.

And a nice retro one for you all. A couple of years ago, my Dad, Mr G, my eldest son and I went to the cinema to watch The Inbetweeners Movie.  Driving home, my father imparts this gem...

Dad: That'll be you in a few years, Dan. You and your mates abroad, in one of those froth discos

Dan: Huh?

Me: Foam party, Dan. Foam party.

I'm surrounded by imbeciles :-)