Wednesday, 29 May 2013

Snakes on a spring table

So it's half term and as usual (so it seems) I've been ill for the first part of it with a chest infection virus-y thing.
Today though I felt a bit better and so finally managed to make a spring table with Maggie.  Admittedly it is almost summer but as it feels like autumn I figure we can allow a little leeway with our seasonal tables.
Now if you search for 'spring tables' on Pinterest you will undoubtedly find Waldorf inspired masterpieces. I dream of having such beauty in our house. However, as we have a shelf high above the television with a garden ornament squirrel inherited from my great aunt on it, such wishes for understated good taste seem futile.
It started well, we gave the Grimm's Rainbow pride of place and found the little Ostheimer rabbit and a tree. Then we added a couple of books, the mint plant Maggie had grown at school and some spring flowers we'd picked in the garden. Connie found a nest on a woodland path the other day so we put that in front of the rainbow. Maggie thought it needed some birds and luckily we had some pink and blue chicks left over from Easter so they found a new home. This is when my dreams of a tasteful table began to fade. She decided we needed a mummy bird, so we looked in the box of toy figures. No mummy bird was found but she did find lots of other toys that apparently no spring table could do without.
The Littlest Pet Shop caterpillar and butterfly were fine for the theme, the pink cat less so, "but Mummy, they're best friends."
It was not long before they were joined by the most mismatched herd of cows in the history of farming, a wooden snake and its baby (a soft snake from Ikea), a small plastic frog and two racing snails. And what spring table isn't complete without a mother dinosaur and her baby hatching from an egg? Our work of art was completed by the careful placing of a plastic fairy I think came from McDonalds and her faithful hare/rabbit (I'm not sure which but the ears suggest hare).
It's unlikely to feature on Pinterest any time soon but she had fun and at least when the cat invariably jumps up there and destroys the entire display I won't be too disappointed.

Monday, 20 May 2013

Why equal marriage should affect us all

I'm going to start today's post by saying that I am straight and married. It doesn't really matter but I suppose you could say that those opposed to equal marriage think it is children like mine who need protecting.
They don't speak for me though; my children know that some people are gay because, well, why shouldn't they? I can think of no logical reason for them not to know that two women or two men can love each other as much as a man and a woman. My 5 year old has seen gay kissing on TV because I don't feel I need censor it any more that heterosexual kissing. I don't remember if she reacted, quite possibly it was just with a soppy "awww" because she likes to see people in love.
I've seen a few comments today from people in favour of equal marriage saying that  if the Bill passes it won't make any difference to those of us who have been able to choose whether or not we get married. I think in time that will be true but right now I disagree. It will make a difference because it will mean that when I tell my children that all people are equal, the law (in this country at least) will reflect that. I want them to grow up in a country where adults have the right to choose whether or not they marry regardless of their sexuality. I tell my daughters that when they grow up they can marry a man or a woman. I want that to be true.
Other people's choices don't affect us, but the difference between living in a country that allows or prohibits equality should concern us all.

Friday, 17 May 2013

Blossom and bottoms

Yesterday we finally had a bit of sunshine so decided to walk across the fields on the way home from school. We moved house in January and being able to take this route is a pleasure but with the weather being so awful we haven't walked this way as often as I'd have liked.
Maggie picked some flowers (mostly dandelions), checked out the blossom on the trees and insisted on posing in the photos I was taking of the views.

There were cows in the next field and I wondered how she'd react. When she was younger she was petrified of even the word 'cow', we had to sing about the horse jumping over the moon and mooing was enough to make her sob. So it was with some trepidation that we approached them, particularly as a few were very close to the path. She was holding my hand and I could feel her tension so I chatted to her calmly, told her to walk sensibly, and breezily chatted to the cows as we passed.
Once we neared the stile she relaxed and so I suggested we took a photo. Unfortunately at that moment the cows took it on themselves to walk away and I joked we didn't want a picture of cows' bottoms.
Later she told me she'd like to walk this way more often "so we can see the cows' bottoms again!" as that was her favourite part of the walk. Next time maybe I should take a photo.

Wednesday, 15 May 2013

The first post

So, the tricky first blog post. More tricky than the second album? I can't be sure as I've not released a first album, and given my (lack of) singing voice and musical talent am unlikely to ever inflict such a monstrosity on the world. Back to the first blog post then and I guess my mission statement. I intend to write about whatever takes my fancy which is actually me saying I mostly intend to use it as another way to procrastinate. I should be making bread right now...