My Last Weekend

I go back to work on Monday. This Monday. As in not tomorrow but the next day. Two more sleeps.

Whose bright idea was this anyway!

I only realised this morning that all of my work clothes, suits, shirts and stuff are in vac bags in the loft. They were dry cleaned before I packed them away and they're airing upstairs now (thanks to Robert).

I'm finally coming to terms with the fact that I'll not be able to cope with the amount of things I've been doing once I'm back at work. The zine will probably be shelved for a while at least until I sort myself in to some semblance of a routine and work out exactly how much time I have to spare. I'll be finishing an issue this weekend for Christmas. In truth I should have had it finished a week ago but I've been inundated with unexpected orders in the last two weeks. A few smaller versions of my daisies have been sold through a local shop. The first one sold very quickly and then the shop owner received a call from a customer who ordered the next two sets which the shop owner had asked me to make so they won't make it onto the shelves either!

At the last count my mum has now sold 22 sets of my prim style Christmas trees. The woman just keeps taking more and more orders without any regard for when I'm going to make them:)

I can't complain though. Typically I'm now so busy I could actually do with not having to go back to work, but it will still be nice to have some extra cash to throw aside for those just in case moments. You know the ones, washing machine giving up the ghost or my good self managing to knacker yet another iron or kettle!

Chloe's been asking more and more about when I'm going back to work. Specifically she asks if she'll know when I go back to work. I think she's a bit worried that there'll be changes but I'm trying to put her mind at rest that everything for her will remain the same.

I've explained to her that she will be staying in school for lunch from Monday on and that she would be doing that anyway even if I weren't going back to work. She's fine with the lunch thing and I think after a few days of still being dropped off and collected from school by me she'll realise that it will all be fine.

If anything she'll actually arrive home to a clean and tidy home instead of the bomb site I only realise I've created each day at noon leaving myself absolutely no time to pack everything away before collecting her.

I've a freezer full of meals and other bits and pieces like cookies. I'll still try and cook fresh everyday but at least I know they're there in case time gets away from me. I feel a bit better knowing that I have a fall back.

Robert's going to have to figure out something else to do during the day because he won't have me at home to ping IPs for him. Poor soul, he'll just have to think of something else.

Now if you'll excuse me there are a half finished pair of gloves calling out to me and I need to get back to them before second glove syndrome kicks in.

The Ulster Museum

We decided that Tuesday had just the right amount of rain and wind for us to make the dash from the car to the Museum without getting soaked to the skin (FYI I didn't take the following photos, but I can't seem to find who did to give credit).

This is the Ulster Museum that I remember, the one I went to visit as a kid to see the dinosaur exhibition and the Spanish Armada exhibition when they travelled through Belfast. The is the Ulster Museum that was worth a visit for the building alone...

This is the new "improved" Ulster Museum, the only version of the Museum that Chloe will remember....

Not what you'd call sympathetically restored, I think you'll agree.

The new museum has lost something for me. Actually it's lost quite a lot for me. The museum is now based around a central atrium with rooms and displays leading off the atrium. I'm sure to a lot of people it's very pretty (on the inside) but the museum has lost all of its flow. A lot of effort must have went into the arrangement and layout of the original museum and displays because you were naturally guided around the museum and past each and every exhibit without even realising (and not a multicoloured line on the floor to be seen).

That flow and natural progression through the museum has all gone now. I found that we were constantly doubling back on ourselves, going in circles and just generally missing loads of the exhibits. We referred to the map (yes a map) over and over again but just found it rather frustrating. I'll maybe go back again myself to try and find a path of my own through each of the rooms and then take Chloe back at a later date.

The exhibits that Chloe was most interested in like the triceratops were for some reason I've yet to figure out, in the middle of a stairwell at the side of the main atrium which made it virtually impossible to stand still for more than a second or two to look at them without being bumped and jostled by other people trying to get to other parts of the museum. All paths lead to that damn atrium making it a very unpleasant place to spend any time.

Its supposed to be light and airy and the illusion of light and air is there in abundance but there's actually seems to be less space to move through the exhibits, the walkways are narrower and cramped and this isn't helped by the fact that nobody seems to know which direction to go in, it was so much nicer in the old building when everyone was travelling in one direction. Still the displays are nice and the coffee shop smelt lovely. It will maybe be a lot better once its been open a while and everyone remembers that they never bothered with the old museum so why bother with the new!

It's comforting to know that once the frustration becomes too much to deal with a short hop, skip and a jump away.....

Is a truly beautiful building. So help me, if anyone ever decides this needs a revamp, I'll hunt them down.

Again, you'll notice sunshine. It did not look like this on Tuesday, but the Palm House is still very impressive and on a sunny day the Rose Gardens are a beautiful place to spend an afternoon.

I'm really starting to think that there is one architect in charge of redeveloping Belfast and his tool kit is comprised of a ruler and pencil. If Belfast is on your list of places to see, I'd be inclined to bump it up somewhere nearer the top of the list because if this guy is let loose on much more of it, you may just as well go to Legoland for the day!

I'll admit that I'm probably a bit biased because of my hatred of new buildings (but I hate them because of the complete lack of imagination, a four year old can draw a mish mash of squares and before anyone points out the Waterfront, a four year old can draw round a plate as well). I like my buildings with a bit of character, with nubbledy sticky out bits. Buildings that at least have something to say for themselves. Buildings that don't have severe design flaws such as a full width stairway leading to a doorway little more than a foot in width or stairways which lead nowhere at all, other than straight to a brick wall.

I will say though, that somewhere in the museum (you'll have to excuse me because I haven't the faintest idea where I was at the time) I did catch a glimpse of one of the old set of tall glass paned double doors with the old black and white tiles on the other side and my heart melted for a second.

I'll stop myself now before I question the reasons why the Ulster Museum felt that a guy in overalls with a paint roller and tray deserved the dedication of entire rooms to his "work".


I'm a great believer that a good night's sleep can cure all ails. Alright maybe not everything, but if I'm feeling down, a bit under the weather or when I've just had a particularly punishing day that leaves me heading to bed with a thumping headache, a sound sleep will leave me feeling ready to deal with anything.

But what about when I can't sleep and sight's like are all too familiar...

A couple of weeks ago now (I think, it feels like a couple of weeks) I woke in the wee small hours convinced someone was trying to get into my house.

I heard a noise, a cracking and popping noise that I'd heard before years earlier at one of those "Why you need a security alarm" talks given by a salesman in the company I worked for at the time. I was only 16 and an office junior at the time, but had been asked to go along, take all the names and hand out tags and info packs. During the talk the salesman brought out two pvc double glazed windows and proceeded to carry out the demonstration that most pvc salesmen at the time were doing. He took a hammer and tried with all his might to break the window all to no avail, it cracked and cracked but remained in the frame and was bloody noisy into the bargain.

Then he turned to the second window and using a butter knife proceeded to pry the seals away from the edges of the frame*. Some of the clips holding the glass panel in place broke and made a cracking noise while others merely slipped from their slot with a soft pop. It was very quiet and a bit disturbing.

Not as disturbing as lying in bed 12 years later at something like 3am listening to the very same noises!

So now I'm wide awake, bolt upright in bed wearing my pink jammies. The only thing I can honestly say I heard was my own heartbeat as my blood pressure raced for the 100, but at the time I heard footsteps, outside on the gravel path at the front of my house and inside creaking on floorboards.

I got out of bed and lifted one of my new rocks from under the bed, a perfectly serviceable weapon in a pinch because it weighs half a ton and has a metal plate or six surrounding the sole. I carefully opened the bedroom door and looked down the stairs only to be faced with the familiar glow of a lamp shining from under the living door. I moved quickly and quietly down the stairs and along the hall before resting my hand on the, really rather rattly handle because Chloe swings on it, and I flung the door open wide.

Nothing, not a soul to be seen. I pulled the curtains back and checked the windows, locked and intact. I checked all the doors and every single room in the house thoroughly, nothing just quietly snoozing babes and husbands. I stood by the front door for what felt like an age with only the sounds of my only heart and ragged breath in my ears before setting the alarm and going back upstairs to lie staring at the ceiling until morning cursing Robert for having left a lamp on.

I haven't slept since. This is one noisy git of a house at 2am. It creaks and groans and pops and makes some of the weirdest sounds I've ever heard as it cools down for the night and warms up again after sunrise.

It's made me realise that something has changed. I've said again and again countless times that my house is like Fort Knox and yet in going on for seven years in this house I can count on one hand how many times I've set the alarm at night and I almost never set it during the day if I'll only be gone for 30 minutes (which I know from the experience of friends is just enough time to remove all valuables from a home, in fact it can be done in 12).

I always felt completely safe in this house, this street, even the entire neighbourhood but what bothered me most about that night is that at the time I didn't (even for the briefest moment) have a second thought about the fact that someone could be in my house. It seemed like it was just such a normal event. I was in a panic, don't get me wrong but the main thing running through my brain was "Someone's in my house! Fecker! Better go deal with it!". There was no quiet, barely heard voice saying "but that's absurd, that kind of thing doesn't happen around here". It just felt like it was a very plausible thing to happen.

I'll admit that the completely unshakable Leanne, is quite a bit shaken by this revelation enough to keep me up at night anyway.

It doesn't help matters that my husband clearly doesn't know how my mind works at all. The next morning, when I told him about the night before (slept right through it, couldn't wake him by setting a bomb off beside him), he could have made everything all better if he'd called me a daft bint or said I'd been watching too much Crimestoppers or something, but instead he said I was daft for having gone downstairs by myself, I should have woken him, he would have gone down with me (equality people, this is why your great granny burnt her bra!) . This leaves me with one conclusion. He thinks its perfectly plausible that someone could break into our home too.

So now I have the husband working at the alarm to make that silent timer a lot less silent. I want that alarm to scream its head off the very second someone comes in. I want it to wake people up and piss people off and for whoever it is downstairs to run out of here at break neck speed.

So now I set my alarm every night and I've even reverted to leaving bait like I used to when I rented in Belfast (that would a twenty, a phone and the car keys left sitting right at the front door with a "please take me and clear off" sign taped to them), then I walk upstairs, climb into bed, rub my eyes and settle in for a night of staring at the ceiling and wondering "What was that" as the house cools down...

*In the last five or six years the seals on pvc windows have been changed so that the seals are inside the house (common sense you would think) but prior to that quite a lot of windows had the seals on the outside.

Shop Handmade UK's Ginormous (a word!) Giveaway

The very lovely Belinda at Shop Handmade UK has organised this monster sized giveaway.

You could be in with a chance of winning one of two prize packs worth over £200 each contributed to by thirty two lovely and talented designers!

You what, repeat the last part! The 32 designers part? Oh right, the bit before that, sorry....

One of two prize packs worth over £200 each.

Better that time? Brilliant!

You can check out the competition page to see details of all the designers involved and individual photos of each item included in the packs. There's a bit of everything, jewellery, knitwear, stationary, toys, home wares, clothing, cards and furoshiki wrapping.

Just think, one win, your name pulled out of the proverbial hat and you're sorted for Christmas. Not only that, but you're sorted for a handmade Christmas.

Of course, you could always just keep everything for yourself!! Do you think you could rawk a pretty pink pinafore dress from Les Petits Anglais? You'd try? Fair enough, to each their own and all that. I'd suggest giving that one away to a little girl, just my opinion of course, you can keep all the rest to yourself.

Of course you're just dying to know what my part is in all of this aren't you?

I contributed my large Red Pendant Necklace. A one of a kind no less!
So how do you enter?

Simple, just sign up to receive the Shop Handmade UK Newsletter at the bottom of the competition page. That's it. Plus by signing up for the newsletter you'll get updates about great designer's sales, discounts and giveaways.

You do have to be over 18 to enter and be resident in the UK.

Just out of pure curiosity

For those of you with kids and more specifically for those with kids who are around 4 or 5 years old, how many hours, roughly, do they sleep at night.

I ask because Chloe's school is having a Halloween party on Thursday night. It starts with a fancy dress parade for the P1 - P3 kids at 7.00pm, followed by some games and things at about 7.45pm and then a fireworks display at 8.30pm. Chloe has been off sick the last few days but went back to school this morning and when I dropped her off, her teacher mentioned that she had set aside some tickets for the party but that she wouldn't be able to hold them for long as the school may run out and need to sell them to other people. She wanted to know if I wanted the tickets and if Chloe would be there.

I said no and explained that as its a school night the party is too late in the evening for Chloe. I don't mind her staying up later than usual to go to the party but she said herself that she doesn't want to go and Chloe pretty much maintains her own routine now. At about 7.00pm every night Chloe walks upstairs and if one of us isn't upstairs with her within a minute or two, she'll yell downstairs that its bath time and for us to hurry up, after her bath she gets her jammies on, comes downstairs again for some toast and a bit of TV and then she goes to bed (completely unprompted) at 8.00pm. Always.

Only very occasionally will she change her bed time routine and I don't argue with her because a child's body clock is one of the most reliable, its adults that fight the inner voice screaming "nighty night"! I figure she must need the sleep, she usually wakes about 7-7.30am so she's getting a full 11 hours sleep minimum and she sometimes has a nap when she comes from from school.

The thing is though, I sometimes (more so during the Summer) would hear kids, some as young as Chloe, still outside playing after 8.00pm and even after 9pm and the Halloween Party hosted by the school is arranged by the PTA who obviously have kids, the name kind of says it all really.

Though when I said that it was far too late for her and she'd be in bed fast asleep by the time they lit the first fuse, her teacher simply replied "Oh" and looked a bit surprised.

Bearing in mind she's also still getting over a chest infection and will need all the sleep she can get to shake it off, but even perfectly healthy, Chloe loves her bed and she never, ever yawns during the day, just before she goes to sleep yes, but not during the day.

So I ask you, is my little girl a hibernator? How long do your kids sleep?

I mentioned a giveaway, didn't I?

Its almost that time of year again, there just isn't any avoiding it.

I've spent the last couple of weeks rearranging furniture and generally clearing all the junk out of my that accumulates during the year to make space in my living room for my Christmas tree. I don't live in a huge house and permanently vacant corner for a tree so it has to be created every year.

Its a good weekend's worth of work just to put up and decorate our tree and that's before I even think about doing anything with the rest of the house so I like to get the organising and rearranging out of the way nice and early so that I can enjoy decorating my tree because, you know trying to shift a bookcase and throwing your back out when your plan was to have a wee glass of wine and hang a few stockings can really put a crimp on a girl's Christmas spirit. Yes that actually happened to my mum and whereas my solution to the problem was to start earlier hers was to buy a 1 foot fibre optic tree that sits nicely on top of the bookcase.

So I'm feeling all Christmassy and I want to share my Christmas spirit (not the mulled wine variety) and what better way than with a giveaway.

And its a pretty good one!

Everything is handmade by yours truly. If you win you'll receive a set of two of my prim style Christmas trees, a set of three gingerbread men tree decorations, a set of three mini I-cord wreath tree decorations (complete with hand knit berries) and a hanging star gift bag, big enough to hold a piece of jewellery or a handful of chocolate coins (I'd recommend filling with chocolate coins). As if that wasn't enough, there will also be something edible included in the giveaway, maybe not a reindeer that poops jelly beans as cool as that is, but something yummy just the same.

The giveaway will be open until midnight on Saturday 14 November, I'll then draw a name on Sunday and pop in the post on Monday so you have it in plenty of time to decorate your home and tree.

Easy peasy, and all you have to do to enter is leave a comment on this post. Tell me something you like, love or loath (we'll work on your issues at a later date) about Christmas!

You can get extra entries into the giveaway by doing any or all of the following;
  1. Subscribe to this blog here;

  2. Become a fan on Facebook;

  3. Tweet about the giveaway and include @SeetheWoods in your tweet;

  4. Blog about the giveaway and link back to this post (not the main blog url)
That's a total of five chances to win this giveaway, just remember though that you need to leave a separate comment for each entry, the more times you enter the more chances you have of winning.

And because we don't have the sole rights to Christmas in the UK (actually I think Disney might own those) this giveaway is open worldwide. You've no excuses now, get entering!

Please remain calm!!

I'm still here and still very much alive and well, I've just been up to my eyes and haven't really noticed the days flying past.

I'm planning on having a little giveaway later in the week, though hopefully I'll be back before then with some great photos I managed to snap of Chloe if my card reader will just stop giving me attitude.

Hang in there, regularly scheduled programming will resume after a short ad break....

Chloe's Keepers

I somehow only realised this week that Chloe's school has a scheme of sorts in place.

The idea is that a child in P3 is paired with a child in P1. Chloe's teacher told me this morning that their idea behind it is that the kids in P3, being about 6 or 7 years old are at the perfect age to be given a P1 (4 or 5) to watch over. The P3 kids are old enough to have a bit more sense than the P1s but still young enough to feel proud of this new responsibility. The older kids don't have to actually be responsible for the little ones as such, but just say Hi if they see them or take a couple of minutes to just have a chat with them about general things, what did you have for dinner last night, I had to do my homework, that kind of thing. It means that while Chloe is in P1 & P2 she will be paired with the same older girl for the two years and then in P3 she herself is paired with a younger child, then in P6 & P7 they're left to concentrate on their 11+ (the scheme must have been in place a while!).

And what's Chloe's opinion on the whole deal? She absolutely loves it!

I've met the little girl paired off with Chloe 4 times now this week. On Tuesday when she saw Chloe and I walking across the playground to school she made a point of separating from what she was doing with her friends and taking Chloe by the hand and off the two of them skipped chatting away merrily. The little girl really does seem lovely and I think will be a great influence on Chloe.

Chloe's quite mature for her age conversationally in that she has no trouble keeping up with and engaging in a full conversation with everyone from kids her own age and older and with adults too. The point is that kids a bit older than her don't see her as being childish in any way so they don't tire of her quickly.

Chloe now seems to have four little friends. The little girl she was originally paired with and three of her friends seem to have attached themselves to Chloe. I'm sure the girl's three friends have kids of their own that they've been paired with, but I'm not going to complain. She stood at the school gates with them while they talked about all the usual girl things, they said they loved her hair and she said she sometimes wished it was straight like theirs and they said no that her hair was really beautiful and she wouldn't want it straight and they talked about homework and how Chloe was lucky that she would get to do all the fun homework soon and she'd have to find colours and shapes and go outside to get things for school and make things with her mum.

It was like standing back and watching a group of women having a chat over coffee, a couple of times I had to stop myself from laughing.

I think this is a brilliant scheme, Chloe can't wait now until after Halloween because the girls told her that they all have lunch together on Wednesdays and Fridays and then she'll have homework to do as well so she'll have more to talk about.

I wonder do any other schools have schemes like this, is it s standard thing. I hope it is!

I made a To Do List

What on earth was I thinking?

I needed to get all of my thoughts together on the things that I need to accomplish before the end of the year, a lot of them need to be done much sooner than that.

Its a frightening prospect all written down like that!

  1. The Tax Return - I've made a start and because its my first and I was only self employed for less than 3 months of the year it will be my easiest one (next year's will be a different story altogether). It needs to be submitted by the middle of November but because I start work on the 2nd I want it out of the way before then, I'm hoping to sit down and get it knocked out on Monday & Tuesday of next week.

  2. The Workstation Makeover - Robert went to ikea today and bought me a new desk (a change from his original plan to build one for me). It was only £17 and will be perfect for what I need PC wise. I need to spend this weekend sorting the PC out.

  3. The Great Stash Sort - I have a new unit (which I think was originally a wardrobe. I've cleaned it, sanded it, painted it, made new doors, and now just need to put all of my (1/4ish) stash into it. By hook or by crook that will happen tomorrow. Its taller but narrower than my current set up and I've painted it white so it shouldn't look too dominant in the room and will free up some floor space.

  4. I want to put together a submission for the UK Handmade Christmas Magazine and that's another thing I'll have to knock out in the next few days, over the weekend maybe.

  5. Submissions which have already been accepted for the Shop Handmade UK launch of their Sample Boxes. I'll put the finishing touches to those tonight.

  6. More Christmas Stock - I can't even think about that at the minute, I'll come back to it.

  7. GO Handmade - My own little UK magazine, now open to submissions from sellers on Misi and Coriandr as well as Folksy. I've made a great start on the next issue and it needs to be ready in ten days. I can do it, but of course, just as I did last time I've forgotten to set aside a new recipe which means that at some stage I need to go to the kitchen, bang my forehead against the Welsh Dresser and hope something falls out!

  8. The GO Handmade Christmas Gift Guide - Wee buns son, bring it on! This should roll out no later than two weeks after the Winter edition of GO Handmade.

  9. I'm volunteering for Chloe's first school trip on Tuesday next week to the fruit shop (yes the same fruit shop she goes to every week with me, shhh) so I have to keep that in mind although it will take an hour at the most giving me two hours to work before collecting her.

  10. I now have, wait for it...... 18 custom orders to finish before Christmas. I had a fair few more. but they're done and dusted and the rest are on their way so this should be ok.

  11. I need to knock up a costume for the PTA Halloween party and fireworks display for Chloe on 22 October (I believe, need to check the form on that date again).

  12. Gifts - I'll need two teacher's gifts and a bunch of little gifts for any of Chloe's new friends in class before Christmas. Plus we'll need to sit down at some stage closer to the end of term and make cards for school.

  13. I still need to take up a pair of jeans for my mum, dammit how did I manage to forget those trousers again!

  14. Christmas Stock - ................ nope still not ready!

  15. I should have written a piece for Mamapedia by now, they think I rock, I have the badge to prove it and so far I've given them jack in return. I should really bump this one up the list somewhat.

  16. I want to knit another two cardigans so see Chloe over the Winter. I already have one knitted and it just needs to be made up. Its in a bag for crying out loud, I've no excuse for that one at all. At this stage in the year I'll just knit the next two in the round and steek them, there's nothing else for it. I can knock the two of them out in a week, although whether I do or not will just be down to pure laziness on my part.

  17. I need to knit a coat or something for the cat to stop her from licking herself bald and freezing to death seeing as she still insists on being outside at night.

  18. I have to stop there, I've more but the longer I spend typing this never ending list the less time I have to actually do these things.
If I've promised something and I've left it off the list, please let me know. Its likely that I haven't forgot though.

The Autumn Table & A Menu Plan.

Last week's menu plan, pfft what menu plan, was a little sketchy to say the least. I had my head somewhere in the clouds all week so to be honest while everyone was fed last week, they weren't fed particularly well.

Then on Friday I made a colossal mistake. When I collected Chloe from school and I was having a quick read through the usual stack of notes in her school bag I mentioned to her that she needed to take something into school for the Autumn table. Stupid, stupid, stupid!

I should have told her that she could take something in for the Autumn table if she wanted to, or words to that effect, because I then checked the weather and told her that we would go to Cairn Wood on either Saturday or Sunday to look for conkers and pine cones for her to take all the while forgetting that Robert was working this weekend. Well done Leanne!

So now you have a four year old who thinks that she absolutely HAS TO take something in to school and you can't do anything to convince her that a handful of leaves from the garden (the walled garden that will have no bloody concept of Autumn for at least a few more weeks) will do the job and we can go to Cairn Wood on Wednesday afternoon.

The only thing that would appease her was making something, so she happily headed off to school this morning with a handful of handmade leave in the right colours like these;

along with a handmade dandelion clock (a cream pompom and a felt stem) and a little handmade pumpkin and the promise that we will replace them with real Autumn things during the week. Although we did harvest an olive branch, complete with little green olives from the front garden this morning on the way.

And because I really need to get my head back in the game food wise this week a quicky menu plan;

Monday: Cottage pie with steamed veg.

Tuesday: Spag bol with garlic bread.

Wednesday: Chloe is at her Nana's so I'll make a chicken curry.

Thursday: Cowboy baked potatoes (Robert wants these again).

Friday: Homemade pizza and a movie. This is Chloe's little end of week treat now.

Saturday: Mushroom risotto with toasted baguette for a bit of crunch and poached eggs.

Sunday: Roast chicken, steamed veg and potatoes.

Baking: I made faux banana bread yesterday and there's still plenty left, I have cookies in the freezer for through the week and some old fashioned golden syrup flapjacks that I made on Saturday although Robert left with a handful this morning for breakfast and I'll maybe make some cupcakes with Chloe when she gets home from school tomorrow.

Where has this week gone?

I'm honestly surprised that its Friday already, I can't imagine where all my time went this week. I have to try and organise myself a little better.

I don't know where I got the stupid idea that I was sorted as far as Christmas presents go, because of course I looked into my box of already wrapped presents and had the usual panic attack that there wasn't enough. Don't tell me I'm the only one that has this panic about Christmas because I know everyone gets it. Also I completely failed to factor one huge thing into my gift making this year......

Chloe started school!

So add a teacher, a class room assistant and a rapidly expanding group of friends to that list.


Chloe is still enjoying school although I'm in a bit of a pickle at the minute. She has arrived home from school a few times now to tell me that someone hit her. She isn't upset about and it certainly hasn't put her off going to school because I still have to fight to keep hold of her in the morning as she runs down the street. Its just something she has mentioned in passing a few times now.

My problem can be separated into

a) she's telling me about the same event over and over again, because she does have a habit of doing that which would mean that it isn't a case of someone picking on her,

b) in Chloe's mind there is absolutely no difference between someone hitting her and someone hurting her and not apologising (she's big on apologies) so she may not have been hit at all, but someone could have bumped or jostled her in the playground or stepped on her toe as they ran past and not noticed and she would take offence to that, or

c) someone actually has hit her, but she really isn't that bothered by it.

I think its likely b) because she's also mentioned some other kids being "hit" while they're playing outside and because I know that the P1 classes share a break, we're talking about roughly 80 kids all in the playground at the same time. There will be bumps and jostles and spills and that can't be helped.

My problem is whether or not to mention it to the teacher. I don't really want to tell her teacher that she's being hit in school intentionally because I honestly don't think that's the case, but if I were to tell her teacher that Chloe might get upset if someone hurts her unintentionally and that Chloe will likely say that someone "hit" her even though it was an accident I don't want Chloe to get a reputation as the kid that tells lies (she doesn't tell lies, she just sometimes doesn't understand the difference yet between being hit and being hurt because she's never had to) or as the kid whose mum will down to the school every time someone bumps into her daughter, because I won't.

My concern would be that Chloe will tell her teacher that she's been hit and that some poor kid will get into trouble for what was for all intents a purposes an accident!

To be honest I'm not at all worried about getting the reputation as the mum who will be down at the school every time her daughter gets hurts, because I don't really give a damn about my reputation. All I care about at the minute is that Chloe knows without having to give it a second thought that if she comes to me with any problem at all, I'll deal with, without question. I'm her mum and I'm here for the sole purpose of being the shoulder to cry on and to make things better, I just didn't realise that role would be tested quite so soon.


I've been thinking a lot about friends this week too, for new opportunities and new challenges and it's taken my mind away to other places quite often.


On a brighter note, my Folksy shop has seen an unexpected boom this week. I didn't expect such a rush until Closer to Christmas to be honest, but I'm happy and grateful nonetheless.

My Pear Bean Bag is no longer mine. It will be winging its way to a new home,

Along with Pumpkin Jack. I'll be sorry to see this little guy go, but I may work on some new ones this weekend. If I find the time.

They're both off to the same new home along with a set of my new Earth Scenes Notebooks

The Earth Scenes Notebooks are a larger version of my Food Lovers Notebooks which (fortunately for me and unfortunately for everyone who missed out) have all now sold in a little over 24 hours. All five packs are now off to new homes and scribblers and they should hopefully (fingers crossed, damn those postal strikes) start arriving this morning. I'll have to try and find some more gorgeous foody photography to make some more.

I'm determined that today is the day I finish a pressie for Louise's mum who turns 70 on Christmas day this year. Louise has taken on the task of making herself (with a tiny bit of help from others) 70 handmade presents for her mum. I have to give her credit, because I honestly don't think I could manage that many. You can stop by her blog to see how she's doing with her personal challenge.

But of course, the longer I sit her, the less likely I am to finish anything at all!