Day 8

Just a quick post tonight as bedtime is looming!

Today I managed to use the airboot and the crutches to walk to a local shop a few streets away to buy crisps and nuts for our sofachurch Christmas get together tomorrow night. One came with me as far as the shop, helped carry the items and stashed them in the rucksack on my back once I’d paid for them. She then went in the other direction for an appointment and I walked home all by myself!

Amazing how something so simple now takes so much organising and working up to. I was really nervous about being out by myself, though of course it was fine. As I got in the front door, my phone rang. I stood in the hall behind the door talking to the caller for a few minutes and as we were wrapping the conversation up there was a knock on the door! I was really glad I hadn’t just settled back down on the sofa again so it was all rather useful timing! (It was delivery of a Christmas present from ebay – hurrah!).

Talking of Christmas presents, I’ve done a load more online shopping today, making lists as I went, making sure I stuck rigidly to my budget, and now I only have a very few presents to get in ‘real life’ so to speak. I’m hoping I might make it into town at some point in the next week as I begin to be more mobile; there’s a bus which stops almost opposite our house so that might be a possibility if I feel up to it. I’m relieved to have got things a bit more organised – it’s been preying on my mind and tomorrow I might pick up my knitting again.

As for today, my walk, which was probably about quarter of a mile altogether, if that, pretty much knocked me out and I sank into an accidental and very deep sleep on the sofa for an hour and a half when I got back! Since breaking my foot I seem to be weeping, and sleeping, at the drop of a hat – two side effects I really wasn’t expecting! Everything makes me cry (most ridiculous example so far was the Christmas Bake Off episode last night when Mary Berry put a little tea light into her gingerbread house and all the boiled-sweet windows glowed *sob*) and I keep falling asleep at random! Hopefully all part of the healing process…

Conversation just now:
One: How are you feeling?
Me: My foot hurts. How are you feeling?
One: The side of my mouth hurts.
Me: Maybe if I kick you in the mouth with my bad foot, the two pains will cancel each other out and we’ll both be absolutely fine…
One: YES! Let’s DO that!

The tragic thing is that, for us, that’s a perfectly normal conversation!

(Spoiler alert: we didn’t do that…)

Snippets from the sofa

– Am struggling to keep my eyes open long enough to wait for Casualty to come on.

– This is in spite of the fact I slept in till 11.30 this morning.

– While sleeping in till 11.30, I had numerous dreams about various of my children going terrifyingly missing in various places.

– I think the dreams were my brain processing the last few weeks of worry and stress.

– I have a jagged red cut on my right middle knuckle following an argument with a can of condensed mushroom soup at teatime yesterday. It is healing up nicely but a bit sore and I keep bashing it on things!

– We all walked into town and back this afternoon. All I did was go to the bank, get Three a new T shirt and buy a block of cheese, but it was lovely to walk somewhere as I feel like I have been driving around a lot this week.

– It wasn’t even raining.

– Other than the town trip, I’ve had a pretty lazy day. This has been very good for me.

– Three is very excited about attaining the great age of eight years old on Tuesday.

– I just keep thinking ‘how am I going to fit an eighth birthday in when I have all this college work to finish?!’ I’m sure it will all work out just fine.

– At the moment I think I will be heading to bed immediately after Casualty finishes!

Well, I like the train, and I like Chester…

…but which one is better?

There’s only one way to find out!

No, no, not a FIGHT* but a trip to Chester on the train of course! And it turns out they are both equally good (apart from being sat on the floor in the train corridor on the way home because we happened to land on a very full one that was going all the way to Euston after it dropped us off in Crewe!).

A lovely lie in was a nice way to start the day. I heard the town centre clock strike 8, and then seemingly about 5 minutes later after lots more peaceful slumber, I heard it strike 9. Finally emerged from my bed at about quarter to 10; how blissfully lazy!

Two (oops, I mean One. Two and Three are both with their dad in another city altogether!) and I had a good time using our family railcard for the first time, thus saving about seven quid on the train fare to Chester for the two of us! We pottered about the city; she had a clothes budget for Primark and managed to get some things she really liked (including the snuggliest dressing gown I have ever seen; I’m quite envious!). We had a drink and a muffin in McDonald’s (as that is much cheaper than your average posh coffee shop, hehe!), looked round HMV, Poundland, Wilkinson’s, and a fab independent little shop full of the most amazing ‘alternative’ type clothes – I fell in love with half of them and I think One was in love with all of them! She is already eyeing up beautiful ‘gothy’ type dresses for her year 11 prom!

We got home in time for a bit of college work for me (including signing up for ‘Dropbox’ after someone else on my course recommended it following a disastrous corruption of some of her files on her memory stick which meant she had to write a huge chunk of her assignment again, eek) and a big clothes sort out for One – the ‘deal’ for having the money for clothes today was that she sorted out everything she doesn’t wear any more and got it all out of her room, so that she only has clothes that fit her and that she will wear, in there. A good job well done!

So it has been a day of fun and also productivity! I’ve really enjoyed spending some quality time with my gorgeous oldest daughter. šŸ™‚

And now I am absolutely knackered and fit for nothing but an evening on the sofa! Early night for me I reckon

*With apologies to Harry Hill!

Today’s achievements

I’ve had a bath, got into my pyjamas and made a big mug of tea. I feel extremely tired this evening, and when I think about what I’ve managed to do today, I’m actually not surprised!

– Walked to school with One and Three. I’ve got very lazy recently and been using the car for what is an easily walkable journey; it’s my aim to try to walk either in the morning or the afternoon at least three times a week (out of 10 school journeys that doesn’t sound like many, I know, but it’s a step up from zero and I don’t want to set my targets too high too soon!)

– Been to see nice Dr U for the next lot of antidepressants. Explained that in general I actually am starting to feel better and more positive than I have for several years (this is blowing my mind slightly), but that the past couple of weeks have been pretty dreadful. He asked why I thought that was and I blamed January, among other things. I think everyone is suffering from the lack of daylight at the moment, and I’m no exception. I have another sick note to sign me off jobseeking for the next 2 months.

– Had a sudden inexplicable urge to sort out the very untidy and neglected pantry. Balanced on kitchen steps; cleared and wiped all three shelves; decluttered three binbags full of rubbish (I get so cross when the children put empty cereal packets back in the cupboard, but it appears I am equally naughty for putting empty cleaning spray bottles back in the pantry…); discovered I own five coolbags of different sizes, and put two mildewy ones through a hot wash; managed to reclaim the entire wide bottom shelf for the washing basket, clothes pegs, washing tablets and fabric conditioner. That bottom shelf previously held a huge mess of flasks, plastic cups and plates, torches, and all manner of precariously balanced stuff that kept falling off.

– Spent the rest of the day wandering in and out of the pantry, looking at my tidy, half empty shelves, grinning and patting myself on the back. šŸ™‚

– Made barbecue flavoured chicken wings and oven chips for myself and the girls for tea. And very nice they were too (even if I did cheat and use a packet mix).

– Made a meal plan (based heavily on the things we never got around to eating from last week’s meal plan because the whole week seemed to fall to pieces) and a shopping list which was gratifyingly short.

– Took both girls to Tesco and survived the grocery shopping intact, remembering everything grocery-wise, even toothpaste which we desperately needed but I’d forgotten to put on the list! Was wilting quite seriously by the time we got back to the car though.

– Got cross with myself for forgetting to bring my, and One’s prescriptions, which I was going to get sorted at Tesco Pharmacy. Am hoping to manage to walk round there with them tomorrow sometime instead.

– Put away all the shopping and did the washing up.

After all that I’m really not surprised I am fit for nothing but flopping on the sofa with a cuppa! Especially as tomorrow I have a morning appointment, a lunchtime appointment and have to take One to an after school appointment as well.

Last night, sleep proved elusive until well after midnight. I am hoping and expecting that I will not have that same problem tonight!

Back to school freebie goodness!

This post is rather long overdue, but I got here in the end!

At the end of August, the lovely Dulwich DivorceeĀ hosted a giveaway on her blog for a Ā£15 Tesco voucher to spend on back to school goodies. I entered, having spent a fortune on uniform already, andĀ lo and behold I won the voucher!

Unfortunately the email containing the voucher got sent straight to my spam folder, where it languished for over a week beforeĀ Alice got in touch to ask if I’d received it! Note to self: check your spam folder more than twice a year…)

Being a bit of a technical fool, it took me several attempts to actually use the voucher, but Alice was very patient with my questions and panics and eventually a few days ago I managed to place an order for a few goodies for Three, who was the only child I hadn’t bought any clothes for this term! I got the order delivered to a reasonably local Tesco so I didn’t have to pay the delivery charge, and picked up the parcel on the way home from my partner’s house yesterday morning.

And here is what the parcel contained!

(Please ignore the bitty rug; the vacuum cleaner hasn’t learned how to work itself yet…)

– Year Threes go swimming once a week for a term; it will be Three’s class’s turn after Christmas. As her swimsuits are rather smaller than she is, I decided it was time to get her a new one. This is plenty big enough – and we know this because she tried it on over her clothes as soon as she saw it!

– A new pair of trousers aged 7-8 as I noticed during assembly when I was in school last Monday that her current trousers are hovering rather higher above her ankles than I had realised! All three of my offspring have grown like weeds over the summer.

– And some fab stripy socks just because I could and they were free! One and Two have to wear black or white socks as part of their uniform; Three’s school has no sock policy (hurrah) so I’m all for sending her in bright ones to cheer up a dreary day!

And thanks to the voucher, the above haul set me back a measly 50 pence! Thank you so much to Dulwich Divorcee (whose blog is fab, by the way – go and follow her!)Ā and Clothing At Tesco!

Next post about to appear: gratuitous knitted sock photos! Hurrah! (Yes I found my elusive camera about an hour ago so am catching up a bit.)

September is approaching with speed

The other day it was shirts and trousers for One and Two. Even shopping as cheaply as possible, four white shirts each and two pairs of black trousers each, plus a pack of black socks each, came to a ridiculous amount of money. That is before we factor in the blazer, tieĀ and PE kit that Two will need for starting secondary school this time.

Thank goodness for hand me downs – Three has lots of polo shirts, grey trousers/skirts and primary school jumpers to choose fromĀ already!

Today it was time to buy shoes. I loathe buying shoes, both for myself and also for the children. It is my idea of hell to have to buy shoes for all of the children at once, in some cases more than one pair each! We set off in trepidation; I was trying to be cheerful about it but my heart was sinking as we approached the shoe shop.

First to measure feet. Two pairs of feet have grown; one pair of feet appear to have shrunk. She was slightly less than impressed about that and decided the shoe measuring thingy must be wrong. Shrunk or not, her school shoes and trainers at home don’t fit at any rate, so she still needed new ones!

Three was ridiculously easy to sort out. She found a pair of school shoes she liked, tried them on, they fitted perfectly. Price tag was acceptable so into the basket they went! Took about three minutes from start to finish. What a relief!

One and Two needed school shoes and trainers/football boots. They took significantly longer to sort out, with lots of trying on, taking off, walking up and down; attempting to do the latter naturally with a piece of elastic about six inches long joining one shoe to its mate! Eventually we managed to find what we needed, but my stress levels were rising, particularly trying to find football boots at a price we were willing to pay, which I have never had to buy before in my life, but are compulsory for boys at the secondary school (I would say ‘grrr sexist’ at the school, but a friend pointed out that if I do that, I will only end up having to buy them for my daughter as well!).

Joined the queue triumphantly. Successfully obtained student discount (‘You don’t look like a student’, said the man at the till as he perused my college ID card. ‘I’m a mature student’, I said. ‘Not that mature’, he said charmingly. Never mind the fact that I feel totally ancient and knackered after an hour of shoe shopping!). Also obtained three free solar powered calculators as we had spent so much money. Children more delighted with the free calculators than they were with the shoes…

So that is done, for another term. Please, please let their feet not grow for ages…