Thursday, 27 September 2012

The 3 R's

Redundancy, Redundancy, Redundancy. That, my dear, is the 'just another day in paradise' euphoria floating around in my head as we speak.

You heard right. It's not good news. Why then do I feel strangely calm as opposed to headless chicken? It's not like I don't have the tendency to headless chicken when the crap gets flung. Maybe I'm in denial.

Who am I kidding? We knew we'd close one day. The overheads just outweighed the income. Doesn't matter how many customers will be lost without us. Doesn't matter how dedicated the team are. If the financial waters are murky (which they are, always have been, trust me), then it's only a matter of time before the plug is pulled and the key gets turned.

Seems like yesterday when PB cut the ribbon on the day we opened. I thought he was a legend at the time. Such a great business man, a brilliant concept, an amazing place to be. Seems he must have had his calculator upside down when he put the business plan together though, we were doomed from the get go. Dick.

I'm not here to bitch. I've had my highs and lows with the company same as everybody else. Laughter. A lot of laughter.
Pranks. A lot of pranks.
Friends. A lot of friends. Two legs. Some with four. Or three.

And prospects. One door closes, another one opens.
Silver linings.... and no I'm not talking about my knickers.

We're in the consultation period at the moment. A white knight in the wings, if you're there, buy us out quickly! Else there'll be 101 families this Christmas eating gruel.
My Husband is the quiet type. Moreso this week than normal. I can understand it.
The dog is sulking too. She KNOWS. I'm sure of it.

And Grace. She's just oblivious. I'm a great one for doing face-on, face-off, you know?

Tomorrow's another day. Another dime, another dollar. And you can sure bet, another job application.


Wednesday, 19 September 2012

First days

Tired after her first day, Grace chomps on a cucumber stick in the car on the way home.
Up at the crack of dawn, Grace could be heard calling Mummy, Mummy from her bedroom. I was in the shower so Husband nipped in to raise the blind and say good morning. No Daddy! She wants Mummy. She comes through, doe eyed, pyjamas hanging off her bottom and chats to me while I get clean. Bubbles, she keeps telling me. Sitting on the bed while I get dressed, I prep her for the day. I'm a big believer in setting the day out to Grace so she knows what to expect, what's on the agenda, no suprises. I'm sure this is why most days for us are tantrum free zones. I'm explaining it's her first day at pre-school, that she's going to meet new friends, and play with new toys, when she remembers she can put the foot stool up against the wall in her bedroom to watch for Grandma coming up the road. She spends the next ten minutes there, calling back to me, no, no Grandma (she means she's not here yet). She gets excited when she see's the car - She's Here! she keeps yelling at me from her room.
From there, she starts breakfast with Grandma while we finish getting ready for work. Quick goodbyes, and reassurance from Mummy that she's going to enjoy her first day at pre-school.
And she does, Mummy's little star.

Sunday, 16 September 2012

Quiet Contemplation

Nearly two months of inertia from me now, days where I have felt much to say but had little if any urgency to set pen to paper, or fingers to keyboard. And it's not so much that the cork is out of the bottle, just a realisation that life has passed me by this summer and Grace is developing so quickly I'm slapping myself round the chops with said wet fish and getting back on the blogging horse.

Before I get into the nitty gritty, Grace, I have to say, is turning out to be such a joy to be around. These last few weeks have seen her turn from quiet, contemplative little toddler, to a chatty, quirky and funny child with a great outlook on life. I'm so proud.

Her vocab has flourished, it must be all the rain we have had this summer. Colours, objects, feelings... she's not afraid to express. One thing bothering me is her starting to use Mummy and Mum interchangeably. I keep telling her, Mummy has an E on the end and she mustn't call me Mum (she's too young), but I guess it's better than calling me Heather. Maybe that's next. She's counting too, not in the right order, one, two, six, ten. Must be those long legs working up the stairs a few at  a time.

Spending a week with her in Scotland has been such a blessing. A trusted Scottish friend has assured me that Ayrshire is well enough across the border to count, so yes, we had a wonderful time exploring the area around Ayr. Loch Doon, Dunure, Culzean Castle, beautiful, and super fun for a toddler. Shell collecting on the beach, splashing in muddy puddles, walking windswept hills looking for sheep to bleet at, spotting ships from the castle walls. Good times.

Back to reality this week, and with redundancy a real possibility at work, wondering if the news will come this week from the people who pull the strings is making this rotten chest infection I've acquired along with the post-holiday blues all the more difficult to shake off. Insomnia from worry (or coughing?!), is making the days drag and I'm getting by on caffeine, my dear friend. I shan't dwell, it hasn't happened yet, just watch this space for thunderous fingers if they do pull the plug on a business I have come to love (and hate at times) over the last nine years.

Matt the Husband is treading the pavements of Sunderland today, running the Great North Run. I'm watching Mo Farrah and his Olympian colleagues get ready to start the race off in half an hour. The chances of spotting said Husband in the crowds on the Beeb are slim, but I'm casting half an eye towards the tele on the off chance I might spot him in his yellow bib. Good luck Lightning!

I'm off to walk the dog and batch cook to make for an easy week when I can stop coughing and get my backside off the sofa. But sat under a blanket with the dog at my side and the heat from the laptop, it's  not going to be an easy up and onwards this morning. Grace is having a sleepover at her Grandma's. The house feels very quiet. Quiet Contemplation.

Quiet contemplation: windswept at Loch Doon

Spotting ships: Culzean Castle

Collecting shells: Dunure Harbour

Splash-happy: muddy puddles....

Wednesday, 5 September 2012

Ripe for the picking

Grace cottoned on the fruit on the blackberry bushes at the weekend when we were out walking the dog at Temple Newsam. We had to pry her away after a few mouthfuls. Not wanting to miss the season, Matt the Husband took her back out yesterday after work to pick fruit for baking. A real independent little girl, Grace carried and picked her own fruit for the bucket and came home to bake blackberry muffins for supper. Tasty!



Arm resting on the window, reversing over her shoulder, Grace is showing early entrepreneurial signs. Taxi!

Monday, 3 September 2012

Pedal on pedal on

Kitted out like her Daddy after a sketchy start involving lots of "No Daddy" protestations, Grace set out on the bike for a jaunt around the garden. Legs long enough to reach the pedals, full of intent but lacking the co-ordination to propel her into actio, Daddy will just have to push for now! Pedal on pedal on....

That's just triggered a blast from the past, living in Dublin, just turned 21, listening to Luka Bloom play live at the theatre... The Acoustic Motorboke, the song was called, pedal on pedal on....

Sunday, 2 September 2012

Hilltop adventure

Not wishing to miss what could be the last day of summer, we set off for a morning jaunt around the nature reserve at the back of the village. Windy and with great views of tractors farming the local land, Grace had a blast...

Grace, very proud of her achievement of walking up a very very steep hill...

Grace, the independant lady, walking Daisy-woof

Spotting tractors, Grace's favourite passtime at present...

Enjoying the wind in her hair....

Silent Sunday

Saturday, 1 September 2012