Wednesday, 16 May 2012

Blog 54 m...08.05am...

 Blog 54 m...08.05am...
This morning at 5 minutes after 8 I was sitting in the kitchen with a cup of coffee listening to the rain falling gently. I was intrigued to see the way the birds flew quickly in and out of the nesting boxes…we have two fully occupied by the great tit and the blue tit families. As they darted back and forth with food for their young the blackbird was washing herself in the overflowing bird bath and another little bird was at the far end of the garden where it floods the most and ‘he’ was splashing about in the puddle. It was peaceful. I was feeling quite calm after having a reasonable few hours of sleep from round about 11.30pm to almost 4 o’clock am; which is quite a treat for me these days. So the usual grogginess wasn’t there to spoil the morning routine for everyone else and as they all left to start their day I sat down with my coffee. Do you know how wonderful that sounds? In fact do you know how wonderful it felt to be able to do that?
I wonder how many people get the chance these days to take five minutes to themselves: just five minutes out of the stress of the working day whether you are working at home or in an office or anywhere really: how precious our days are and how few the chances are to take in the day in all its beauty. So this morning I got the chance to do just that and I didn’t want to waste a moment.

We have had a lot of rain just lately but we need it, we have water butts to keep full so as to survive the imposed water hosepipe ban…which actually doesn’t affect us as we don’t have a hose pipe as we are on a water meter and the thing whirrs round so fast just when I’m filling the kettle that the thought of watering our little back yard fills me with dread. We need the rain I know and I’m not complaining but wouldn’t it be wonderful if it just rained at night and then the days were fresh and sunny? Not too hot, just warm enough to throw the windows open and stroll about without coats instead of dashing about under umbrellas.

I have fabulous photographs of the ‘Intelligent-one’ and the ‘Cutie-pie’ splashing about in the puddles in the garden…they have Mr. Men wellingtons on, Tele-tubby raincoats and they are dancing with Bob the Builder umbrellas in their hands and they were singing and laughing: I must say at this point that they were both only little ones at the time! The garden was completely flooded due to the ‘Hubby’ having sealed the block paving with some magical potion that was guaranteed to stop the weeds from growing ever again. However, all it stopped was the rain from soaking into the ground in between the block work meaning that we had to don our wellingtons and brush the rainwater in to the drain…including the plastic duck one of the children had floated in the middle and yelled that we had a duck in the garden… all much to the amusement of our wonderful neighbours who heckled us from their upstairs window! 

Hence the reason why the yard is deep in water today after so much rainfall. The wind makes tiny ripples on the water surface and here and there little air bubbles appear. It’s not good for the worms or insects but the birds love it.
Whilst reflecting on a what a nice way to start the day I thought about what ‘Hubby’ would be doing at this time of the morning. Well, he would have dropped the ‘Cutie-pie’ off at school, sat in a traffic jam for a while and then finally got to work and would now be answering phone calls and dealing with deliveries. At the same time the ‘Intelligent-one’ would be sitting on his college coach, ear pieces in and listening to ‘The Wanted’ or ‘The Killers’ or some other top notch band whilst looking at Facebook or texting…I’m sure the art of conversation is slipping away from the younger generation! Meanwhile the ‘Cutie-pie’ will be sitting in the school dinner hall revising his Mathematics …er no not really, he will be in the hall but only because they serve hot chocolate and bagels to the early pupils! What about the ‘Bridezilla’? Ah well at this ungodly hour she would normally be choosing her outfit, putting on her make up or making her bed. She is very good actually at always leaving her bed made and her room tidy. [I trained her well…seem to have failed in that department where the boys are concerned!]I said ‘normally’ because this week she is on holiday and has left in the early hours in order to put a second coat of white paint on her bannister railing…ah the pleasures and the excitement of a new home…still can’t persuade her to take her washing with her to be whirring in her new washing machine whilst they decorate though.

My mind wandered off as to what would I have normally been doing at this time in the early years when I was working? Well believe it or not I would have been in school for half and hour or more already and would have put the kettle on, made a coffee, gone to my classroom and my day would have already begun…lifting chairs off desks, setting out books, sharpening pencils, writing the day and date and spellings on the board…yes I’m from the old school days when we used blackboards and chalk and there wasn’t an electronic whiteboard to be seen… added finishing touches to a display, sorted the reading corner out…forever these books have been the bane of my life why no one can replace a book where they got it from has always bugged me…it happens at home too! There would always be something to do before the children arrived and if I wasn’t on playground duty or cloakroom duty or supporting a heart broken child or angry parent then there would be a chance of a second coffee with a few minutes to spare before the bell rang…oh yes that’s something else that’s on the scrapheap!

When the boys were little at this time of the morning I was sitting in the traffic on the way back from dropping them off at the child minder in order to get to work…my head full of shopping lists and to do lists…after having been up for hours during which time I had filled the washer, hung out the clean washing weather permitting, made the beds, checked all the packed lunches were in bags and not still in the fridge…yes that does happen and yes also sometimes I forgot to put the sandwich filler in the sandwich…I would also have dumped the breakfast pots in the sink and drawn back all the curtains to give the impression that I was an organised mum…thank goodness no one could see the mess on the floor of abandoned toys and newspapers or the towels or the socks…STOP! My mind needs to stop wandering that far back, it’s too hectic to remember…I need to think of calm things like for example when I was on maternity leave with the ‘Cutie-pie.’ Ah yes, this time of the day with him was magical. He was such a happy chappy first thing and so cuddly that it was hard to put him down. I would be snuggling him under my chin…well not quite he was rather a large baby but you get the picture…and he was all warm in his fluffy baby-suit. By 08.05am there was just the two of us and he was ready for his next feed. [The ‘Intelligent-one' used to still go to his child-minder that I used when I was working other wise I’d lose his place...the ‘Cutie-pie’ would eventually join him at the end of the maternity leave.] I’d still be in my pyjamas as well and we would snuggle up on my bed propped up with pillows and start the day together …and once his little tummy was full of milk he would dose, his beautiful eyes closed and his long eyelashes gently flickering as he drifted into his sleep and I would set his bottle down, kiss his sweet smelling forehead and lie him next to me...then I'd drink a coffee and snooze next to him. Ah yes now those were the days!

08.05am was totally different for the ‘Intelligent–one’ when he was little; I had a shorter maternity leave and as I’ve said before the mother-in-law used to arrive very early to do her child minding duties: she had the pleasure of giving him his first bottle of the day. But when he started school and I was still at home with ‘Cutie-pie’ I had the opportunity to take him to school. Due to the traffic near us and the fact that I needed to get to the other side of town we needed to set off early and then we would sit in the car outside his school. The ‘Cutie-pie’ would still be in his pyjamas under his blue quilted snuggle suit but was quite happy to sit in his rear car seat with his teddy and his blanket. Sometimes we dashed out of the house so fast I don’t think I had the chance to comb my hair and I did become attached to a woolly hat and pull on fleece. I suppose I was one step away from being the kind of mother who drove children to school still wearing their nightwear! [The mothers that is!] The three of us would sit come rain or sunshine in the car and go through spellings, times-tables and the reading book as we were the first to arrive and didn't want to stand in the playground like three stranded beings. We used to play ‘I spy with my little eye…’ it was a great way to help the ‘Intelligent–one’ with his spellings. One morning I named the object I had ‘spied’ as beginning with the sound sh …now at this point neither of us had ever guessed that the ‘Cutie-pie’ was ever taking any notice…suddenly a little voice from the back of the car chirped up ‘shit…’ What on earth? Who had taught him that word? Of course at the age of 5 the ‘Intelligent-one’ was not to foresee the consequences of telling me that when daddy drives he uses the sh word if someone stops suddenly at the traffic lights or parks in his spot…mmm it was obvious daddy needed a talking to. Didn’t he know that all children pick up all words but only repeat the ones you don’t want to hear and at a time when you definitely do not want to hear them. Luckily there was only the ‘Intelligent-one’ and myself to hear this profanity…ah well at least I suppose it was great to know that the ‘Cutie-pie’ was aware of his sounds and letters from an early age!   

Well by the time I had finished reminiscing I was ready for another coffee and my next round of pain killers. So I decided to sit in the conservatory where I’d get a better view of the birds and their daily routine. Which actually was a suggestion from one of the other sufferers at the Pain Management Group: he said that when the pain was really bad it was a good idea to take some time out, get a drink and sit and look out of the window in an effort to take your mind off the pain. To a point he was right.
Looking out at the garden, I wondered if this was how my mother had started her day once all four children had gone to school? I know when I was at college if I ever came home early I would find her sitting in the breakfast room with a china cup and saucer, a small plate with a fried egg ‘butty’ and she would be gazing out of the window watching her birds on their feeding table. So she definitely stopped and had her quiet moment. I also wondered what would my father be doing at this time of his day? He’s always been an early riser and has only just retired from his day job at the ripe old age of 84! Somehow I think he’ll be sitting with a boiled egg, brown bread toast, pot of tea and his newspaper whilst the soft sounds of his radio play away in the back ground…I can presume all this as this is how he started his Saturdays and Sundays when we were all still living at home and I doubt he’d change his routine now…just extend it to week days.
I also wondered what would my mother-in-law be doing at this time of the day? Do you know I haven’t a clue. I’ve known her for nearly 30 years and I haven’t any idea what she does. Maybe she will be sitting at her table with a paper and a cup of tea? I cannot imagine her watching the birds or listening to the radio. I’m actually thinking now how hard it must be to get up in a quiet house, sit alone at the table in the quiet, spend all day in the quiet and go back to bed in the quiet. With this chilling thought a pang of guilt gripped me and so I decided to give her a ring.
“What’s wrong? Who’s died?”
“No one, I just thought I’d say hello…”
“At this time of the day? I was just sorting my flower baskets out, they were looking forlorn with all this rain…”
“That’s good, I was just wondering what you were up to.”
“Good god, there’s no peace, you’re as bad her next door, always wanting to know where I’m going…”
Ah well, at least I know that she’s not lonely or moping ; and I could hear her T.V. in the background so she wasn't in silence either. So I returned to my coffee and my chair by the window.
This definitely was a lovely way to start today but wait what was that I saw out of the corner of my eye? I sat perfectly still…on no…tiny little black flecks on the window sill…tiny little black moving flecks…those bloody ants are back and guess where the ant powder is? 
Yes… in the shed at the other side of the pond that was once my garden…best get my wellies on then…
...good job I don’t have to be anywhere else then isn’t it…


 Blog 54 n...coming Wednesday...
Copyright ©GML2012


  1. Oh no! not the ants again!!!! A lovely post, and an even more lovely reminder to stop and take a moment (even if it is in pain) to savour the day.


    1. There must be a tiny hole somewhere in the wall where they get in! Glad you enjoyed it xx

  2. How I start the day: toilet (FIRST!); let the dogs out from the utility for their 'toilet'; get the Dyson and hoover the utilty (I don't know what they get up to in there!; boil kettle;boot the computer up; go and see what the commotion outside is (either the postman up the track, the milkman at the bottom of the track, or the dogs next door have been let out for their 'toilet' and have spotted mine); feed the birds; back inside put a load in the washer whilst the dogs are out (of the utility that is, not the washer, although there's an idea ;)); make my pot of darjeeling; feed the fish; sit down and rest................

    1. Busy busy busy...take a breath and look out of your window and savour that view...xx

  3. Enjoyed reading this weeks blog. I love to start my day by sitting in the conservatory with cup of coffee watching to birds on the bird table and bird feeders. How life has changed for the both of us since our hectic teaching days! Isn't it great to have time to chill. Time to think and time to enjoy life. I don't think I could be bothered with the stress of the classroom anymore! Keep relaxing and chilling. Best medicine for personal well being and it's free. X

    1. You are so's taking a while to get my head round the fact that I'll not be in the classrom summer end of term reports...but it's great to have space in my mind for other writing...after all these years! Relaxing and chilling are the best medicine for personal well being...keep it up...xx