Tag: blame

This week I have been painting fences. We share a boundary with no fewer than six neighbours, and all of those fences need a lick of paint. They have been neglected long enough; if we leave it any longer they will become warped, or worse, broken. It takes me about five minutes to change into […]
On Friday morning last week, one of my children came downstairs with blue teeth. I didn’t notice but the other children clocked it in a second. “Why do you have blue teeth?” one sibling asked. “Oh, maybe because I was eating blueberries last night,” the child replied so nonchalantly she could have flicked her hair. […]
Over the weekend, a friend asked me what my children’s ethnic heritage is. (Answer: complicated.) When I mentioned this conversation to my six year old son, he soberly answered, “Human.” We nodded at his sagacity, but he very quickly followed up with, “No! I mean the culprit. I’m the culprit.” Interesting, not just for vocabulary […]
“Wait. Am I even facing the right way now?” One of my Yoga students this week caught my eye and looked uncertain. Looking around the class, she could see that everyone else was doing something different from her, and she worried she was doing it wrong. In response, the words tumbled from my mouth before […]
My sister-in-law hates Chiff Chaffs.  These little migratory birds arrive in the UK in April or May, perching in the tops of trees, calling out a repetitive CHIFF CHAFF CHIFF CHAFF sound that seems to go on and on.  She says that the call is incessantly annoying.  I’d never thought of it that way: to […]
She was supposed to be sitting still and paying attention.  But she wasn’t.  My six year old sprawled across her seat, and the woman next to her, a woman of a different generation, hissed, “sit still!” Later, my daughter buried her face in my cardigan in embarrassment and unhappiness.  “Why was she so rude to […]
I am so happy to have a piece in the first issue of Stealing Time Magazine, a new literary magazine for parents.  If you’d like to read my piece, it is available by clicking here. The theme of this first issue was Genesis, and the magazine is available every quarter. I’d encourage you to check […]
Several days ago one of my children hurt another child’s feelings.  At school she did something that was unkind and it upset another child, someone she actually really likes.  When I found out what she’d done, I felt a mixture of feelings: sadness, consternation, frustration and yes, shame.  I knew that her behaviour was a […]
I knew something was up when I could hear water rushing upstairs.  I wondered whether Aidan had turned on the taps in the bathtub, and at worst, I thought I would have to go upstairs to turn them off and bring him downstairs.  What did I find?  He’d managed to plug the sink with a […]
There are certain things about motherhood that I really struggle to accept.  The relentless nature of housework, the critical or patronising remarks of other people who assume that my life is one coffee morning after another, the mind-numbing nature of playground small talk and gossip… all of these make me want to put my skates on and […]