Project Autumn

Project AutumnThe return to school for me is a bit like New Year, an opportunity to start afresh and to begin new projects. This year is no different, re-invigorated by the freedom school offers me, I am planning a massive overhaul of our home.

On opening our front door when we arrived home from our holiday, I was not hit by my normal feeling of warmth, but instead by a grey overcast sense of disappointment. Usually the Colfax and Fowler wallpaper swirling up our stairway brings a happy smile to my face; I’m always taken aback by how beautiful it is. However this time the dirty hall carpet and the lack of working light fittings is what struck me. It felt scruffy and tired, and it made me feel depressed, honestly depressed.

My Kitchen, where I spend a lot of time is decoratively not done to my taste but usually its familiarity means I’m home, all I could see was clutter and debris gathering in every spare corner. Don’t start me on what happens if you open some of the cupboards; be prepared to catch a tumbling pan or vagrant jar of spice.

Upstairs each bedroom needs a little work too. Although Tink has had a newly decorated bedroom fairly recently, his space over flows with stuff, stuff which I am determined to create some order from. Stig had a new bedroom not long after we moved into our house, within the first year. We’ve now been here 6 years and it’s starting to look a little tired, ok it’s been battered. His explosive out bursts have seen him pull bits of his furniture to pieces and there are a couple of crater size holes in his wall. I have always stood firm on the rule that until the destructive behaviour stops, the bedroom remained as it is. Recently we had to strategically place a shiny poster of the solar system over the holes in the wall as a friend was coming to stay; I knew he would feel embarrassed and I know the shame doesn’t help him. So I’m softening, maybe a newly decorated big boys bedroom would be a good incentive to work towards, to try and over overcome some of the poor choices he makes when angry. Whether that’s possible is another post entirely but it’s food for thought.

We don’t have a massive budget but I think we will start with a de-clutter, all cupboards, shelves and storage spaces will get the treatment. I’m a bit of a hoarder but at present I can feel a slight (only slight MR H before you get any big ideas about my fabric collection) ruthless streak running through my veins, so I will strike whilst the iron is hot. Next a carpet cleaner will be hired and the job I have been promising to do for three years or more will happen. Things will be cleaned and maybe refreshed with a coat of paint. The electrician will be called and a couple of new light fittings hung.

Once that is done I will fashion, reorganise and style. A few new purchases may be required, it’s amazing what a bit of new bedding and a couple of cushions can do for a room. The boys particularly could do with new duvets as occasionally they still sleep beneath those they had when they first came to us. I always love new bedding there is nothing better than climbing into crisp new sheets and looking down on a beautiful new duvet cover. I particularly like the bedding ranges from K&Co.com

So that’s the plan and watch this space for updates, hopefully my momentum won’t waver, I really can’t leave the hall carpet yet another year.

Disclaimer: This is a Featured Post for K&Co.

Happiness

childhood
I wrote this a while ago when one day a vivid memory from my childhood in South Africa popped into my mind. I loved and still love South Africa and always felt a great sense of loss when we moved away, I was eight at the time. Any memories I have of that time feel very special to me and magical.

Like an ancient Chinese warrior clad in brilliant green armour, it rested, still and patient in the little girl’s gently cupped hand. Squatting amongst  the flowers and with that familiar squelchy feeling of moisture between thigh and knee the girl gazed appreciatively at the creature, absorbed by its intricate beauty, not wish it any harm but wanting to befriend and love it. Both still like statues whilst high above the sun beat down warming her freckled shoulders and glistening on the creature’s leaf like exterior. The distant sound of ground being toiled did not distract or induce fear into either. They were missing in their moment.

Years later the grown girl would squirm and recoil at the thought of seeking out and holding a praying mantis, disbelief in her own choice of pass times aged seven. But that world she had then lived in was a more wonderful and magical place, one that now seemed to exist only in myths and legends.  A land that smelt of the warm earth on which it rested and where colourful people lived extraordinary lives. Her memories bore affection and the colour red, red like the knitted jumper in the photograph her pen pal owned, her aged seven with her hair in pigtails and a gappy smile.  Daddy had made lots of fun of here that Christmas repeatedly singing that annoying song “all I want for Christmas is my two front teeth”.  It was their last Christmas there.

Red like the sunset across the open sky, red like the flowers in that beautiful garden which had once been hers, red like the blood on a scuffed knee. Red and warm like the soil beneath her daily bare, naked feet in a land so far far away. The same earth beneath her bare naked feet as she sat there, in that flower bed, on that day.

Beyond the flowerbed, the garden sloped away, the grass prickly and dry, thirsty in places. At night the tick tick ticking of the sprinklers would try to resuscitate the crops of brown whilst lullaby the little girl to sleep, but for now they patched the grass like Dalmatian spots, frazzled and crisp. The inclining lawn came to a close at a drawn stone line, crazy paving; the paving met by blue tiled mosaic, the mosaic dropped down into open azure, the swimming pool. The jewel in the crown of their oasis.

That day as the diamonds danced across the pool, a soft warm breeze breathed a loving embrace amongst those there and there was happiness in that garden, in that day at that moment just happiness.

I’ve linked this up with Magic Moments over at The Oliver’s Madhouse

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The Day Out

Journey

I wrote this poem on a train journey to a family day out. As sometimes happens my anxieties for the day and how the boys might cope had caused my husband and I to fall out. I was really angry when I wrote the main body of the poem and I think it shows what I know to well. I write best when I write straight from the heart, from the raw emotion. The day turned out much better than I anticipated and I know Mr H will have apologised for a situation which was not all his fault, but he’s good like that.

The Day Out

It’s early still but I feel fully drained,
The morning of anxieties and stress has ordained,
That I don’t want to be here sharing this view,
Of the world passing by, as the train rushes through,
Fields and hills, hamlets and folds,
Turning to houses, building, shops, roads.
Across the aisle the antagonist sits,
Sharing a game with one of our kids.
Still pushing my button, still harming with blame,
Still hell bent on creating a day,
Where a family of four are divided to two,
Sides are taken the minors must choose.
A blackened eye glance, a surly exchange,
The gulf between widens constructed with pain.
The day before seems endless, hopeless beyond,
Happiness, hope for a memory of fond,
Moments and smiles, pictures to put,
For future review in a memory book.
Some five hours pass and homeward we bound,
Contented with the family time we have found.
All previous anger so quickly diffused,
By a husbands confession of I really love you.

I have linked this to the wonderful #Prose4T

Prose for Thought

The Visitor

visitor

THE VISITOR

I say it will be fine

In my head and in my mind,

I won’t get stressed, but I do.

*

I say it will be easy,

Laid back relaxed and breezy,

I won’t get stressed, but I do.

*

I hope it doesn’t matter,

The house all full of clutter,

I won’t get stressed, but I do.

*

I hope you say out loud

That you love and feel so proud,

I won’t get stressed, but I do.

*

I wonder if for you

The apprehension is there too,

I won’t get stressed, but I do.

*

You walk through my door,

The anxiety is no more,

I needn’t have got stressed because it’s you.

I’ve linked up again with Prose 4 Thought….

Prose for Thought

The Award Season Post

Well I thought it unlikely that I would ever get a chance to be nominated for an award, only in my wildest dreams, but maybe just maybe this is THE chance for me. So if you really love this little old space in the vast world of blogging that I occupy, you could help that dream come true and nominate me for a MAD (mums and dads) blogging Award.

I’m a new blog only 7 months in all, so that would be the best category I think, Best New Blog but, you might think I have a chance else where, although best pregnancy blog could be pushing it.

So click the link here and add the full address, www.thepuffindiaires.com as your nomination.

vote

CLICK HERE,CLICK HERE, CLICK HERE

Shameless I know!

You have to choose a blog of the year first, that could be any blog you love. You will then go through to the categories where you place your nominees against each category. Remember Best New Blog *waves hands vigorously* “hello yes me The Puffin Dairies, thank you”.

You do not need to fill them all in just the ones you want to but there are lots of amazing blogs out there so nominate as many as you can. Closing date for nominations is the 18th February.

Right now we’ve got that sorted, I’d like to fain disinterest and say that if you don’t vote that’s ok because I know I’m the best, my son told me so……..

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