Grumps, Grieving and Greenwich Mean Time

Our clocks went back an hour overnight and as usual the change has put me out of sync for the whole day. A very long lie in (bliss), lunch at 3.30 and tea at almost 7.00 has made today feel a bit odd, really. As usual the children have been a bit more fractious than usual and I have been fractious too.

I decided to fight the fractious feeling with CHANGE! Despite the grumpiness that goes alongside the clocks change, I do actually really love GMT and the darker nights. Autumn is my favourite season and there is something very cosy about shutting the blinds earlier and snuggling in for the night.

I changed my bed and got the 15 tog duvet out. It is huge, warm and very very snuggly. Ironically, it has been pretty warm today and I’m wondering if I really need such a thick duvet just yet, but I have had to have a blanket over the other one for the past week or so, so I do think it is time to level up, so to speak! Clean bedding is always a treat and I’m looking forward to getting into bed in a while!

Three and I went to B&Q for a couple of houseplant spray bottles (one for us and one for grandma), a couple of lampshades, and most significantly, a new toilet seat. I’ve never really liked the colour of our toilet seat ever since we moved in almost 12 years ago (a dark maroon sort of colour), and it has been showing its age for a while, all scratched and horrible. It occurred to me fairly recently that there is nothing in the world stopping me from changing it for one I like!

We found a nice cheap plain white one, and brought it home, whence I proceeded to get it fitted. I knew what to do and was expecting it to be very easy.

I hadn’t banked on the old toilet seat being so difficult to remove. One side (the side I tried first, of course) was loose and easy – the other side was horrible, with the nut stuck to the bolt and I wasn’t strong enough to turn the nut without the bolt turning too. I tried all sorts of different ways and different tools and was just about ready to admit defeat. I hated the fact that I was being outwitted by a job just because I wasn’t physically strong enough.

Isn’t it strange how grief pops up when you least expect it? My lovely dad has been dead for over two and a half years now, and I think about him every single day, usually with a smile on my face. All of a sudden whilst getting angry with this toilet seat, I had a flashback to an afternoon at Mum and Dad’s house about six years ago, trying to put together a doll’s house for One’s seventh birthday, single handedly, just because I could. The last screw was proving difficult to get in and despite Dad offering to help over and over again, I wouldn’t let him, because I had to do it All By Myself. I stropped, I sulked… and eventually I silently handed him the screwdriver and watched his enormous strong hands effortlessly move it into place.

I so wanted my dad to come and sort out this toilet seat removal for me. And having sprayed it in desperation with about half a can of WD40 (or rather, the pound shop equivalent), I sat by the toilet bowl and, ambushed by grief, wept bitter tears for my dad.

Ten minutes later I tried the recalcitrant fitting again and found the lubricant had done its work while I had been sobbing. Off came the old seat at last, and I fitted the new one in about three minutes’ flat! It looks amazing – like we have a completely new toilet! And all for under a tenner. 🙂 I am now planning more cheap and cheerful ways to update the bathroom, including possible lino for the floor, new fluffy mats (the current ones have splashes of bleach all over them which I suppose does prove I clean the loo occasionally…) and a blind for the window.

It has been a strange day but a positive one, on the whole. This afternoon I spent a lot of time on the sofa watching Three perform several puppet shows with a dog called Jumbo! She has a fabulous imagination and I definitely needed the giggles she gave me!


7 thoughts on “Grumps, Grieving and Greenwich Mean Time

  1. If you can tell me the proportions of your window and give me a colour, I’ll happily make you a blind! I’ve just inherited a vast lot of fabric from my MiL! And it needs a good home.

  2. We discussed upgrading the bedding for winter, but I think we’re going to put it off a while longer as I spent at least part of last night quite comfortable with just an empty duvet cover.

    I was thinking of making a rag-rug bathmat (it wouldn’t be fluffy – the plaited and coiled kind) for when we have our bathroom done – I can make you one too if you’d like one (let me know if you have any colour preferences).

  3. We had to get a new toilet seat last week as ours had demised. Sadly, I had to let the Swan Whisperer get it, so of course we have a plain white one – I so loved our old one which was transparent with strands of barbed wire incorporated into the plastic! Plain white is very nice (there are a lot worse things!) but I am finding the bathroom rather dull now!

  4. It takes all of us at least a week to adjust to the time change. Dog has no idea about Greenwhich Mean Time and woke me at stupid o’ clock for his breakfast. Went back to bed and we all had a long lie in…Spent the afternoon trying to teach J to use power tools to create a brace for the new gate I need to make to keep Dog in. I am more aware than ever that I am impatient…I too wished my Dad were here and not 350 miles and a dodgy heart away. He would have sorted it all before breakfast. However, giving J the opportunity to make the brace was a learning opportunity for both of us…A good thing 🙂 Thanks for sharing x

  5. I also had murders trying to change the toilet seat! Luckily this one just has plastic bits that go in and out quite easily, but getting the old one off was horrendous. Well done for sorting it in the end!

  6. We had to change ours a couple of weeks ago (the lid had broken in half!) and it took two and a half hours to get the **** thing off because the bolts were so rusted. It then took about 10 minutes to put the new one on!

  7. I’m feeling quite left out because I haven’t had to change a toilet seat recently…..

    I know what you mean about the grief hitting so unexpectedly – it still hits me now occasionally and usually it’s the smallest trigger imaginable that provokes it.

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