posted on: Friday, 6 May 2016

It's the final stretch; I am writing to a deadline, completing the first year of my Masters by the end of May. Wooahhh it feels like not that long ago that I decided to do this crazy go-back-to-school endeavour and now I have nearly finished a book! That's nuts. My friend Simone always said I had a book in me; turns out she was right. What it has meant though is that I have not had much of a presence here. That's temporary so I just wanted to drop in, say hi.

The book - well let's just say that at the moment, wrangling 29 chapters (yes, 29) feels like kneading an enormous piece of bread dough that is so big it won't even fit on the table. You get the analogy. It's hard work and it feels unwieldy and it makes my brain ache. I see in terms of themes my book is about all the stuff that has mattered to me. Like friendship or motherhood or marriage or women. Fascinating what comes out when you put your mind to it.

In other news, it's the first run of sunny days this Spring and this makes me so happy. This time of year is always special as it reminds me of when Boo was born and when everyone who visited us in hospital were wearing summer clothes and it felt like a whole fresh season. She turns fifteen next week. I type that and think it looks like madness; how can fifteen years have passed?!! Funny how it goes. 

As ever when the season changes I want to shed the clothes I have been shrouded in all winter and switch them up with new fresh things. New clothes. But then I remember the shopping embargo and instead think, ahh maybe not. Or maybe I will just try one or two key items. Like these slides (yes, glitter) and this dress (yes, orange). I watched the Iris Apfel film and I can say that it has profoundly affected me. I keep thinking about it and about her. What a character and as for the way she dresses - so inspirational. I want to be just like that when I am in my nineties. I am thinking glasses are an incredible distraction from an ageing face, I so now need to get some big ole glasses. And anyone who wears shoes that have flamingos on them is a friend of mine.

There are all sorts of subliminal messages for me when it comes to anything to do with flamingos, palm trees, pineapples and dolphins. This is a Florida thing. I am still obsessed. I have a writing friend who is also a brand specialist and he was telling me about the memory triggers that are deeply rooted in us that makes us like a certain thing or I guess, more importantly, make us want to buy certain things. This is fascinating to me, especially when you consider why some people, like Iris Apfel have an 'eye' for things. It boils down to knowing what you like. And I like 1980's palm trees. This is why I am enjoying the Mara Hoffman Instagram. Pink and green and a smattering of tropical. It's resort wear and I feel like I want a life that has a resort wear requirement in it.

Meanwhile, a return to yoga yesterday, I don't even know why I stopped. I guess it was having a month of school holidays that did it. I was in my poses thinking 'I love this; why did I stop?' and having answer other than life got in the way. I hate when that happens, but it happens a lot.

The same applies to writing the blog, I don't do it enough and I will try to do more once the deadline is out of the way. I was telling someone about my decision to do a Masters and write a book and how it had enabled me to have a contrast to being a full time mother. I used to be a working mother and that utterly defined everything about me, it was what I did and I defended it to the ends of the earth. In the time since I stopped working (over two years) I see that  actually what I was attached to was having something in my life other than motherhood. It's not as simple an equation as to suggest that motherhood was not enough. It is. It's the most important thing I will ever do. But there has always been a danger of being consumed by it and that felt unhealthy; both for me and for them. So I used to work to stave that off. Then I stopped and devoted myself utterly and was, I must say, not the happiest I've ever been. 

Now, it's a new phase.

What I wanted to find was a way to be a full time mother and have an active brain and life; as honestly even if you work in a really demanding job it's not as if you get to be a part time mother. It is, by definition, a full time gig. You just become adept at shoe-horning it in around everything else. So, as things stand I think I have a possibility of both. I can be the mother and I can write. Of course no one is paying me to write yet, but I am willing to give it a try.


  1. So true about the glasses! I must do that. I've always had an affinity for old-fashioned things, usually tinted with a dark edge. For instance, I love twilight (always of the view that paradoxically, life is more colorful when it's darker outside), the woods, anything that has to do with vampires, the bronte sisters (just read jane eyre.. Best book I've ever read), the band "deftones" (is it normal at 40 to enjoy their music?), love British weather and the color purple is my favorite (I know you don't like that color Lou). I can't help but to entertain the thought whether some of our likes/dislikes are rooted in our past lives, as I'm a believer of reincarnation. Some things that live in me seem to have no basis in my current life and I wonder where they come from. It is wonderful that you are giving yourself the mental space to "create", namely in the form of a book. If I was endowed with capacity for narrative I would write one too. What an amazing gift to have! I always read classic literature as Opposed to contemporary stories, but should your book ever be published I will be one of the first to read it.

  2. I cannot believe that our girls are both now 15....OMG, as they would say!!!!! And I cannot believe that you have written 29 chapters of a book, that is completely BRILLIANT, so excited for you & proud of you.....AMAZING!!!!

    New phases, let's hear it for them, woo hoo!! Xx