March 2011 books

The Desperate Diary of a Country Housewife by Daisy Waugh is a pretty dreadful read. I am not quite sure how it has got such good reviews on Amazon. The annoying author and her mostly-absent’-I-am-not-sure-he-wanted-to-move-to-the-countryside-husband move, along with their children to Somerset or somewhere like that. Poorly written and she spends most of her time moaning. Don’t bother.

Seagulls in the Attic by Tessa Hainsworth is a really lovely read. Her first book Up With the Larks is one of my favourites. Tessa had a very stressful job with the Body Shop and, along with her actor husband and their children, moved to Cornwall where she took a job as a postwoman. It’s such a lovely evocative read and it made me giggle. A much better memoir than the first one!

From Here to Paternity by Matt Dunn is the story of a man who wants a baby. Unfortunately he doesn’t even have a girlfriend at the time so this is his attempts to acquire the ‘appropriate type of woman.’ I have to admit that is amused me somewhat as it was a ludicrous story!

Glitz by Louise Bagshawe was an OK read but once again a ridiculous story. Four trust-fund women, all cousins, suddenly find out one day that their mental and very old uncle who funds their extravagant lifestyles has decided to stop their cash. All because he has found himself a new dinky and young Thai bride. They make the decision to try and end this relationship, but end up getting successful jobs and find out they quite like working. Silly, but good bus reading.

Skin Privilege by Karin Slaughter is an exciting read. Lena Adams is a detective who has struggled to escape her past and forget about her childhood with her uncle the drug addict and a sister who died too young. When she returns home one weekend she finds her uncle using meth and gets herself mixed up in a story of violence. A good read with a most unexpected ending.

Busy Woman Seeks Wife by Annie Sanders is a brilliant read. Alex Hill is a high flying executive struggling to manage her professional life, as well as look after her melodramatic aging mother and her home. What she needs is a wife, and what she gets is rather unexpected, A great read and really made me giggle.

Breakneck by Erica Spindler is a crime novel with a cyber-theft undercurrent as well as lots of murders. The detectives in charge are two women and one of the women is related on several levels to some of the victims. An enjoyable read with a fast paced story.

Now, somehow I managed to pick up Privileged by Zoey Dean and it seems to me that this book is actually aimed at teenage girls, and I think it is also a TV show on E4. Not that I knew that when I started reading it though! Two spoilt teenage heiresses are taken to task by their grandmother and told that they have to pass some exams to get their inheritance. Cue Megan, a skint writer with loads of debts. Of course, the book is rather cutesy at time but it did amuse me in places.

The Baker’s Apprentice by Judi Hendricks is a slow burner of a book. Why Morrison is a baker worker in a small deli bakery. After the breakup of her marriage she is barely getting by but her work and her friends keep her going. A sweet book and when I got into the story I really enjoyed it. Some nice recipes scattered throughout the book. The story made me crave bread though which is not helpful when I am trying to diet!

Do Not Disturb by Louise Bagshawe is a “bonkbuster” chick-lit read with an utterly improbable storyline. It also has a lot of characters in it which occasionally meant I lost track of who was who. Featuring several hotel managers, all vying with each other to have the best hotel in the world, they seem to hate each other, but also spend quite a bit of time shagging each other! An OK read but it was far, far too long; well over 500 pages. She seriously needed a good editor to help her cut it down a bit.

Rough Justice by Stephen Leather was a pretty exciting read. ‘Spider’ Shepherd is sent undercover to investigate cops who have taken the law into their own hands and start castrating pimps and seriously battering individuals who shoot small children during drugs busts. An exciting and fast paced thriller. Worth a read.

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National Media Museum Shipmeet

Had a lovely day yesterday at Shipmeet at the National Media Museum in Bradford. Well, I say Shipmeet, but as it was only us and Tom and Anne and the boys it was more like a typical day trip out for us!

The museum is a brilliant place to take kids, and I have to admit that I loved seeing some of the characters from my childhood TV shows, such as Playschool and the Wombles. It was quite embarrassing when I realised that Paul didn’t remember half the things I do because he is 5 years younger than me. I also practiced reading the news from an autocue and the boys enjoyed pretending they were flying on the blue screen.

It was such a gorgeous day that we decided to go for a walk in the afternoon so we walked to our local farm shop which has an animal walk. I was very much hoping that there would be lots of baby lambs but they had closed off part of the walk due to the bad weather a few weeks ago. Mind you, we did see cute baby baa-lambs a bit further down the road.

A brilliant day, topped off with the entertainment of watching Andrew fall asleep in his tea and nearly fall off the chair.

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Oh :(

There are a lovely few days every month when I think I might, maybe, possibly, hopefully, be pregnant. I dream about what it will be like to have a bouncing baby in my arms. Then there is the realisation that once again I am not pregnant. Every month I feel sad and utterly utterly disappointed. Every month I am reminded that I have failed and that I have to wait another month.

I am finding it harder and harder to deal with the emotions of trying to conceive. Something that we hoped would be straightforward has become a cycle of charting and hoping. Don’t get me wrong, things are still fun… heheh …. but that disappointment every single month is almost too hard.

Of course all of this is made even more difficult by the fact that other people’s lives go on…. photos on Facebook of other people’s babies and children and photos of people blooming during their pregnancies. It’s a constant reminder of that great unattainable dream.

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Is anyone else getting masses of it?

I have gone from having very little to about 15 a day.

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Food glorious food

Well I have been doing Slimming World for about 7 weeks and I have lost 9lbs. It should really be more than that but I put on 4 1/2lbs when we went to Hong Kong. Anyway, my target was 1lb a week and I want to lose 2 stone by 4 June, so that’s all going well.

The only thing about Slimming World is that I have to be really orgaised about cooking. Most of the meals I eat are ‘syn free’ which means I can eat as much as I like. So, I tnd to cook more than we need for dinner, and then I take it to work the next day for lunch.

So I have cooked 5 meals this afternoon and our weeks menu looks like this..

Sunday – roast chicken
Monday – Shepherds Pie
Tuesday – chicken casserole
Wednesday – beef chilli and rice
Thursday – chicken curry and rice
Friday – Slimming World burgers and chips.

Pretty good. As we are home for the next few weekends I hope to really stick to it and up my weight loss for the next few weeks.

Now… to dinner!

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