Thursday, 23 December 2010

Well, for once my photo looks current! It was actually taken two years ago - before Lily had the audacity to tower over her older brother. We are very careful now with our photo-taking to ensure the disparity isn't obvious - short of popping Sam onto a box (a la Prince Charles). I'm still convinced he will shoot up when he hits puberty - and if he doesn't, well, so be it. He's gorgeous, and will be in hot demand in an 'Aston from JLS' way!

This has been my first Christmas since starting work, and thank goodness I'm not hosting. I'm a christmas food masochist who needs to make everything from scratch - although I am painfully aware each year that no-one gives a monkeys if your stuffing is from Nigella or Netto. The most effort I made was in 2001 (my first ever 'Christmas at Ours') and made everything from Nigella's 'How To Eat Book'. I had always been deeply impressed with Lidgates Butcher in Notting Hill (posh meat, posh prices, even posher customers) and when I came across her recipe for 'Lidgates Cranberry and Orange Stuffing', I was sold. Shame no-one else was. Hideously bright pink (surely that wasn't the intention?) it poked out of the Turkey's backside like a bad case of piles. I insisted on helping myself to a large portion but struggled to find any merit in the taste either. It was the source of much mirth then and ever since. Please leave well alone if ever tempted!

No, this year the mantle falls to my sister-in-law. She has a very keen cook of a husband too, so I'm hugely looking forward to his grub. My heart always used to sink slightly when we had it at my MILs; she means well, but a frozen Bernard Matthews Butter Ball does not cut the mustard does it? The thing used to come out of the oven swimming in water - not a natural juice in sight. No worries - a quick douse of Bisto (beef) Gravy Granules and Bob's Your Uncle!

What a snob I sound. I hope your Christmas lunch is everything you hope it will be (with a few cold spuds for later). Have a great time!

Friday, 17 December 2010

Last Day

Well, it's all gone pretty smoothly. She loved her day, and can't wait to begin in January. It helps that the uniform is purple (how expensive was that?).

Today is her last day, and she told me this morning that she feels weird. I feel even weirder. I went to the carol service yesterday and felt awkward - I'm sure it's all in my head, but when you move a child away from a school, the implication is that you're not happy with it. I found myself avoiding the glances of the teachers and the other mums, and justifying the decision to those who asked as a 'giving both kids the same opportunities'. Then I wanted to back track and say,'not that this is not a great school, and I'm sure your kids will do really well here, and pass the 11+, and it's not that we have loads of money because we don't, and there'll be no more skiing hols for us for a while etc. etc.' But I didn't. I just felt awkward. Mr G is picking her up today, and just as well actually. There will be tears, and he copes much better with her in those situations. I'm sure a trip to McDonalds will dry those eyes!

I'm in the office today, and meeting up with a couple of old girlfriends tonight. We're going to Benihana - a Japanese restaurant where the chefs cook amazing things at your table. Anyone been to one before? I'm hoping the snow dump that was forecast yesterday doesn't materialise - or I will be stranded in London.....

Friday, 10 December 2010

New School Dramas

My stomach is in a knot as I wait another half an hour before I can go and pick up my daughter after her 'trial' day at her new school. I didn't expect to feel like this, but ever since we told her she was moving it's been a roller-coaster of emotions. One minute she's excited, the next in tears. She has had to do some tests to see if she'll be accepted. I know that she really needs to balls these up to be rejected, but she does suffers from nerves. Will she burst into tears in front of the headmistress when she thinks about the friends she's leaving behind? Will she feel lonely in the playground at lunch? Will she freak out when they play netball in PE, which she has never learned?

Why am I moving her then? Because we already have a son in a private school (there was no place for him in Lily's state school) and I just cannot justify it anymore. I am earning enough to pay for her, and she definitely will benefit from the extra attention and facilities. She is normally super confident in new situations (e.g on a film set, where she knows no-one) so my fingers are crossed.......