Puppy Training, Skip Day & Birthday Peace & Quiet

No, you’re not seeing double. No, I didn’t post the same thing twice. No, I’m not mad… okay, I’ll rescind that statement… I’m a little mad, and a little frustrated, and a bit pissed off to be fair. Puppy training, as I said in my previous post, starts on July 7th, but I won’t be there for the first lesson. Bear’s going alone because the first lesson is theoretical, basically how they’ll be training the puppies and why they’ll be doing it that way. For a start it’ll all be in Dutch, so I’ll only understand about a third of it and secondly, we can’t leave the pup alone so one of us is going to have to stay home. We can’t take him with us because the lesson will be in a classroom, of sorts and he’ll be bored out of his brain in five seconds (as will I probably), so he’ll be whimpering and wanting to run around and shout at all the strangers.

Skip day is a no-no thanks to the woman at the end of our row (we live in a terrace) who when Bear asked, refused to allow us to place the skip in front of her garage (behind the houses) despite the fact she doesn’t use it and the skip will only be there for 12 hours. There isn’t anywhere else to place a skip because our street is very narrow and the car park is always full, so we’re screwed now. The only other option is to load the car up and take it all down the tip ourselves, which will take about 8 journeys and will require us to separate everything into nine categories… Grrr.!

My birthday was anything but peaceful and quiet. We went for a walk with the dog across the moors in the early afternoon and got sun burnt, despite it threatening to rain all day. Then we came home to rest, because after an hour and a half of walking up- and downhill on dirty sand with a fucked hip, I wasn’t in any fit state to do anything but collapse on the sofa with painkillers. I know… I don’t know why I do this shit to myself either, probably to prove that I still can, despite the agony afterwards. The dog wasn’t too impressed either and flopped on the floor and snored like a hog for two hours, after he drank a litre of cold water.

Once I got my shit together enough and had recovered a little we headed off to The Mommy’s for a bbq, where she took a guess at my age and allowed me 5 years and was very loved for it. She thought I was a few years younger than her youngest son, rather than the six months younger that I am. I was given a couple of bottles of a sweet rosé wine that I had there the last time we went and thought was lush. Unusual for me, I’m a beer drinker not a wine drinker, and if I do drink wine it’s usually red, but this was really nice. We came home stuffed to bursting and vegged out until we were able to move a little and then my eldest son called.

I know it’s bloody mean to say it, but I wish to God I hadn’t answered his call. Two and a half hours spent listening to him crying and ranting and raging and cursing a blue streak over his ex-fiancee and her lack of communication in explaining why she dumped him. He’s become obsessive and suicidal and is verging on mania and I have absolutely no clue what the fuck to say because when shit like that happened to me in my youth, I just walked away and left it in the dirt. I didn’t obsess over an ex-, I didn’t threaten to kill them and myself in some fucked up one-sided pact (don’t worry, he won’t do it).

I didn’t force my attention on them, demanding answers and whining about trying to fix things. I didn’t cry for days on end at the unfairness of it all. I just walked away and got on with my life alone. I’m also no kind of counsellor, I don’t have answers or fantastic advice to impart. I’m just his mother, and apparently not much use as that. He can’t deal with rejection. He’s so sensitive and honestly, emotionally unstable when he’s not getting what he wants and like his father, he can’t live alone. Being under lockdown for two and a half months hasn’t helped either. He’s probably got depression and I know he’s lonely, but I’m 540 miles away, what can I do.?

I’ve talked and listened and listened some more and made suggestions, all on deaf ears. He refuses to see a counsellor, refuses to talk to anyone but his ex-, who won’t talk to him and has now blocked him on Fb because he won’t quit bugging her, won’t leave the flat, but wants to move so he doesn’t have to live with memories of her in it, but he can’t afford to move. He’s still furloughed and he trusts no-one, so is avoiding all the friends he had because they were also friends with his ex-… So my birthday evening, which should have been spent snuggled up on the sofa with Bear and a good beer, was spent upstairs, listening to my adult son having a major barney over a woman, again, over Messenger with a warm beer and an increasing sense of dread. Fucking great.!

Puppy Training, Skip Day & Birthday Peace And Quiet

We finally have an appointment for puppy training.! \o/ It begins on July 7th for eight weeks and is an hour and a half every Tuesday evening. Bear’s going to change some of his late shifts for early’s so he can attend. I was a bit unsure about doggo being well behaved in eight weeks, but apparently they’re quite intense lessons, so the little gremlin will get schooled.! The mischievous little toad has chewed through the light cable on my bike and chewed the corners off of a fibreboard we put up in front of the BBQ, because he kept trying to eat the gas line.

He’s managed to obliterate his squeaky bear, squeaky ball, rattly rabbit and braided chew toy, and is in the process of eating his Nylabone. His blankets have all had the tags chewed off and he’s been quite content to chew off the threaded hems. All this amongst eight sticks and a hearty attempt at my rubber croc house shoes. Today we’re heading to the pet store to get more kibble and find some new puppy toys… something that will last more than a few weeks and be educational as well as fun and noisy. The gremlin loves his Kong-type ball that we put treats in and has already mastered throwing it himself.


I’ve finally managed to get Bear to commit to a skip, having gotten him to finish the sort out with the cupboard in the boy child’s room, which he got around to on Sunday. The skip is arranged for next Friday, which is his next day off. Amongst the interesting items he found up there was the paper he wrote the route instructions on when he came to collect me from my psychologically abusive marriage ten years ago. He didn’t have a Satnav back then and couldn’t get Google Maps on his phone, so had written down the road names and numbers. Don’t for a second think it was a sweet, romantic gesture. This is Bear.

He dumped the paper in a box and over the years has dumped other papers and personal detritus in there and forgotten about it, dumping the box in the cupboard because he couldn’t be bothered to go through it and bin stuff. He’s not a hoarder, but he can be lazy when it comes to sorting out the junk he accrues over time. I usually go through mine every two months, he’ll have to be persuaded to go through his once in a blue moon and most of the time there’ll be something amongst it that he’d been looking for for months, as there was this time. Roll on next Friday.!

On Monday, it’s my birthday, which I had completely forgotten about until Bear asked me what the day after Sunday was and I replied Monday, and earned myself a Paddington hard stare. So I checked the date, not having a clue what he was going on about to realise it was my birthday. Oh.! Well, never mind. It’s just a day like any other, it’s not like I can go to the bar or enjoy a celebratory meal at my favourite Italian. Thanks to the selfish, moronic people hell bent on spreading the ‘Rona all over the province again, like they tried to a fortnight ago when the city opened three bars in the centre, setting out tables and chairs two metres apart over the entire central plaza so more people could come out while observing social distancing and the whole dumb-ass lot of them started a conga line in celebration of the restriction lifting and weaved in and out of the tables, spreading germs left, right and centre.

I’ll take peace and quiet for my birthday this year. The children are here for the weekend and were supposed to be staying until Monday evening, but as the boy child has a play date (yes, I know they don’t call them that when you’re an almost 14 year old boy, but still) on Sunday afternoon and I objected to Bear having to drive 250 miles in one weekend, so they’re both going home on Sunday afternoon instead, saving 125 miles and the stress of having them here on my birthday, which would have involved cake, which I would have had to make. Sod that.! So I’ll take peace and quiet, a lion (in as much as the gremlin lets us sleep in) and a peaceful, lazy day with no bullshit.

Beer would be nice, chocolate would be welcome and maybe a few episodes of CSI or Doctor Who. I’d usually get a present from The Mommy and Bear, but I’ve told them I don’t want presents as Bear has commissioned a drawing from a Dutch illustrator named Dennis Baptiste, of Sir Patrick Stewart in his role as Jean-Luc Picard for us. It’s bloody expensive but so worth it, as the artist is well known for his beautifully detailed hand drawn works. We’re going up to Amsterdam to collect it when it’s done, which will also be bloody expensive, as Amsterdam is over four hours drive from us and you don’t just drive up there and back again.

A few examples of his breathtaking work. All hand drawn, nothing digital.


Today my father blocked me on Facebook. 😀 It came after he posted a picture of a little white girl who was murdered years ago by an Albanian immigrant on the family Messenger group with the words ‘where’s the outrage’ in a misguided attempt to question the current black lives matter protests worldwide. Bear posted a link to a ‘What Aboutism’ page in response and my mother then asked us all to have some consideration for my father’s views as well. Which pissed me off to no end, because never has my father ever respected anyone else’s viewpoints if they differ from his.

He was born in the late 1940’s when discrimination was par for the course. Into a family that had worked hard for what they had and had come from hard-working families. Unfortunately they, as was normal in those days, shared the same discriminatory opinions and white superiority. I am proud of my family for the hard-work and resilience it took for them to get where they were, working as fishermen and farmers, building fish-merchanting businesses and helping their communities to thrive. In one family there is an MBE and OBE awarded. They have much to be proud of.

Unfortunately the continuation of their white privilege is bitching like a spiteful child about how white lives matter more than anybody else’s, spouting ignorance and a lack of care for anybody other than his own self, as is also par for the course. My father has never given a damn about anybody else but himself and his own feelings. He’s been a Conservative (Tory) from day one and refuses to reconsider his set in stone opinions about anything. Happy to sacrifice friendships and relationships in his steadfast belief that he is better than everyone else, because he is white. Including those with his own children.

Which brings me to the fact that this is not the first time my father has posted offensive content to our family group, nor been supported and accepted for posting it by the rest of my family. And to be quite honest with you it makes me wonder at the ignorance that is rife in my family… So I then pointed out that I had always accepted my father’s viewpoints, despite them being homophobic, racist and just plain wrong.! I asked if the family Messenger group had been set up for keeping in touch as a family or for my father to post offensive content to because he didn’t have the balls to post it to his own Facebook page and didn’t care that it was offensive to his own family members.

I said that if that was what was going to continue to happen I would leave the group. At which point my father left the group… and then blocked me. Childish, as per. Whether he blocked me because I went off about his offensive opinions… again, or whether it was because he suddenly found out I was bi-sexual, and thus an abomination to God, the Universe and him personally, I don’t know. I don’t care. The less toxicity I have in my life, the better. He hasn’t blocked Bear though, which is kinda telling, to me anyway. 😀

White Privilege

I was faced with my white privilege the other day, privately and alone, while watching a black man being murdered, in public. I’ve watched a few of the recent videos of police brutality resulting in the death of an innocent black person, but with an attitude of ‘well, what can you expect from America, it’s a festering hole in the ground,’ and then carried on with my day. This particular video changed everything. This video broke my heart, as a mother, daughter and human being. Witnessing that poor man’s dying words as he was deliberately murdered made me so fucking angry. I was seething with rage at the injustice of what they’d done to him, an innocent man whose colour was the only reason for his murderer’s hatred of him. A father with children, a man with a mother, who the fuck did they think they were to take his life so calmly, without fear of retribution, despite knowing they were on camera. I wanted to blow their murdering racist heads off.

Then the question arose… what if that had been your son, your father, your brother.? But it wouldn’t have been, because my family are white. Had any member of my family been arrested, they’d have been given a state solicitor and bail, because they’re white. They wouldn’t have been arrested for no reason, much less had the police called on them in the first place because they’re white. And that’s even more infuriating.! That the colour of their skin wouldn’t even allow them to be placed in the position that black man was. My mother wouldn’t lose a child, my brother wouldn’t lose a sibling, our children wouldn’t lose their parent because as a white person, we wouldn’t be treated that way.

White privilege hits really fucking hard when you see the hell the colour of your skin can bring just because it’s darker. I don’t know shit about white privilege, I admit. I know I’ve always had it, I accept that I am privileged because of the colour of my skin and I confess that I’ve gotten away with a lot of shit because of it. I’ve been protected all my life. Other than that, I don’t know shit. Yet. I intend to educate myself. Learn what it is to be black in a white world and use the power of my colour to help make changes to a system that even to a white privileged woman in her 40’s sucks shit through a sweaty sock.! Black lives matter just as much as white lives and while I’ve always known that, I haven’t always been instrumental in making damn sure the powers that be know that I know.

But they will now.

LGBTQIA+ Pride Month

A month dedicated to celebrating our differences, not hating them or using them as an excuse to victimise and be violent towards people we don’t understand, so are scared of and consequently judge unfairly, deciding they are some form of enemy. We are the only species that practises homophobia in a world where most species have homosexual relationships. How we remain the dominant species is a surprise considering how insecure and fragile we are. We’re terrified of our fellow human beings because they’re a different colour, speak a different language, follow a different religion and live in a different culture, with different rules and morals. We hate them because they love differently, completely, unconditionally and confidently.

We are all human, ergo we should all be equal, but of course we’re not. We’ve created a world that gives straight people the upper hand, setting standards of behaviour we don’t bother to live up to. Setting a moral code we ignore when it suits us, but holding everyone else up to and condemning them for not reaching those high standards while we wallow in the gutter, feeling unjustifiably superior. We can do better. Every day should be a new start to be better. To prove that we are capable of change and acceptance, to educate ourselves instead of being proud of our ignorance, to show we care about others beyond our own little insulated bubbles and do what we can to help.

Resist hatred

Fight back against homophobia, bi-phobia and transphobia. Our differences are to be accepted and celebrated, not feared and hated. In a world as technological as ours, ignorance should be a thing of the past. Information and education is everywhere. There is no excuse for fear based on ignorance. It is not logical to hate because of love.

Happy Pride Month 🌈 💖

Toxic Plants, Teenage Attitudes & Controlling Behaviour

Yesterday, we spent the afternoon at The Mommy’s. It was a lovely sunny afternoon, with a hearty breeze that kept the heat to a manageable level. Pup sat on my lap in the car and although stressed, was far happier than on previous occasions. He drooled a little and yawned a few times, but otherwise was fine. He got treated to a couple of slices of puppy friendly pork salami and a few slices of strawberry. Then he was allowed to come off the lead as Bear decided that with the back gate closed, he couldn’t get into mischief…..

Until he decided, having raced around the grass and sniffed his way around the patio area, to investigate the flower/shrub/tree borders and started eating dried Hydrangea petals and a small cut off of wood, pruned from the main bush some weeks ago that was lying under the bush. Having no idea what the bush actually was, he was allowed to chew on the wood until The Mommy mentioned that it was Hydrangea and perhaps he shouldn’t be chewing on the wood. Fuck.!! Hydrangea is toxic to dogs, as is the Rhododendron that is next to the Hydrangea in her garden.!

How the hell did we not know what it was.? Of course, pup was immediately removed from the border and re-attached to his lead and offered water and kept an eye on for any signs of a reaction, which thankfully happened quite quickly as he vomited everything he’d eaten since we got there. Petals and wood included. He was fine afterwards, although whimper-y because he wanted to go back and eat the Hydrangea wood and wasn’t allowed. He won’t be going off-lead there again and I’ll be making a note of all the plants in The Mommy’s back garden to ensure he doesn’t eat anything that has the potential to poison him. Bloody glad he was sick, it could have been so much worse.

I have noticed this weekend that the boy child has developed a bit of a teenage attitude. With the severe buzzcut hair has come a sulky, know-it-all, fuck-my-life attitude that I know well from my own teenage sons. I foresee some serious clashing of attitudes ahead because I’m not taking that shit from him, just as I didn’t take it from my own kids. He already seems to think he’s intimidating because he’s taller than me and I’ve had to disabuse him of that idea a few times over the past few months. He may be tall, but I’m faster and meaner and it’s me he needs to be wary of.

My own lads have called me a bad-ass in the past because experience has taught them that it doesn’t matter how tall or muscular someone is, or how sly and clever they think they are, they fuck with me or my loved ones and I’ll take them down. I have no problem going full-psycho if I feel it necessary. The boy child may have to learn that in the course of time and perhaps his father will too. Bear still sees me as a sweet, loving, little darling despite knowing of my past (mis)deeds. Just because I’m nice to him and his family. Talk of rose-tinted specs.

When I last spoke to #1 son on Wednesday, he revealed that he and her ladyship had split up on Monday. No surprise there, it was definitely coming. He was understandably upset and had cried and ranted and raged against the decision (hers, obviously), but otherwise he was fine and in no way in the kind of state he was in the last time a relationship went south. Her ladyship of course blamed him for the split, telling him he was too negative (true) and that she felt she’d been forced into the engagement (false) and that she didn’t feel ready for marriage.

Not that marriage had been mentioned beyond the engagement, at which she was over-joyed and had advertised it and her ring all over social media, calling herself a fiancee and telling everyone how happy she was. Doesn’t sound like someone who was forced into her engagement. I did have a lot of concerns however, not just about her level of maturity and obvious lack of a clue about what she wanted out of life, as she listens to and believes what everyone else tells her about life in general.

She’s always lived in the house she was born in. She’s never left her home town. Never wanted to. She’s never been on holiday, only seen the world over social media, never expressed a desire to visit anywhere else, which leads to a very narrow minded view of life and a limited appreciation for all it has to offer. She has no experience or education of anywhere other than her own town, so of course she has no idea what she wants. She’s still attached to her father and he likes it that way, giving her no encouragement to live her life.

#1 son has a wealth of experiences and education, having lived with the Military and been shipped around Europe, living in Germany for 7 years and visiting Belgium, France and the Netherlands, as well as Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland and The Republic of Ireland. He has so much experience of life and other cultures, far more than someone his age should have. He’s had to toughen up and has put up with his father’s narcissistic, vindictive behaviour towards him and his neglect.

#1 son sadly feels it necessary to be controlling too. His perfect woman is someone who wants to be wrapped in cotton wool and told what to think, what opinions to have and how to behave. She has to love only him and never even look at another man and be happy with an isolated life away from people who might fill her head with nonsense and a reality that’s not his. His attitude is his father’s. And I fear for any woman he sets his sights on. We’ve discussed his need to be controlling and he understands it’s not healthy and it’s very destructive.

He can’t help it though. He has a clear idea of what he wants out of life and the kind of woman he wants to live that life with and in that, he’s setting himself up to be hurt over and over again as his taste in women is seriously questionable. He goes for the frail and fragile, like a knight in shining armour. The woman who needs a hero and a father figure to make her feel safe again. No woman will be happy with him who has a mind of her own, a life of her own and a need to have friends and people around her.

I only hope the woman who takes him on has the emotional strength to deal with his insecurities and the kindness to understand and communicate on his level to help him understand that she needs to have a life too, without his suffocating control. So far the women that have been in his life have been skittish, fragile and secretive, which has made his need to control them worse. It seems both my sons have strong elements of their father in them. 😦

Buzzcuts, Bundt Cake & Hot Pants

The boy and girl child are here for the weekend and have some noticeable additions since the last time they were here. The girl child now sports braces around her top and bottom teeth and is none too pleased about it because of the amount of effort she has to put in to looking after them and keeping her teeth clean. Her three x daily regimen includes mouth wash, a small brush to brush any food crumbs out of her braces, her toothpaste and electric toothbrush and an anti-bacterial mouthwash to ensure she doesn’t get an infection from her braces rubbing on the inside of her cheeks and lips. The boy child has a new buzzcut, a hairstyle he hasn’t had since he was 5 years old. He got fed up with his hair brushing against his ears and took the plunge after finding out the barber’s weren’t going to be opening near him for a few more weeks. It’s added about four years to him and makes him look taller than he already is.! 😮

Bear asked if I’d make a cake for the girl child, although her birthday was earlier in the week and she was treated to cake, pie and cheesecake.! And she’s likely to get cake again when we go to The Mommy’s on Sunday. But I made a cake… chocolate and banana Bundt cake with chocolate drizzled over the top. I like the Bundt tin, it’s easy to use and easy to clean and as yet, I’ve not fucked up a Bundt cake, which is quite an achievement considering my history with 9″ and 11″ loose bottomed cake tins. The birthday girl loved her cake and it went down very well with Bear and the boy child too. So far her presents have included a 3000 piece puzzle she’d wanted, a floating hammock, a set of silver jewellery and a €30 voucher for her local ice cream parlour. She’ll be visiting a wildlife park in Den Haag when the lockdown is lifted, with her mother.

Hopefully, her mother will have a word with her about her current dressing style. She’s a tall, curvy young girl who wears what she wants, which is all well and good when she fits into what she’s wearing. Currently she’s wearing a pair of grey shorts she’s had since she was 13 that are way more revealing than I’d be happy about my 15 year old daughter wearing, especially in public. They look like hot pants. Her butt cheeks are hanging out the bottom and while she’s obviously conscious of it because she keeps pulling them down, she’s still wearing them. The Dutch are very different from the English, my mother would have taken one look at me in too short shorts and demanded I go change and throw the shorts out. The girl child’s mother appears to have no such issues with her daughter looking like someone out of a Kylie Minogue video..

I told Bear about them, but he just nodded his head in agreement and said nothing.!

A Growing Boy, A Residency Permit & Pineapple Salsa

My little grandson turned two yesterday and damn, how that little lad has grown. He used to look so much like his mother, but now looks just like his father did at that age. He’s into everything and has a strong independent streak and adores his Daddy. So far, he seems to have been lucky and has avoided inheriting his father’s A.D.H.D. and Autistic Spectrum disorders. Hopefully, the next child will too. Grandbaby #2 is due in September. #2 son sent me photos of the little guy in his birthday outfit and he looks so grown up… 💓

This afternoon we finally got around to uploading the documentation needed for a decision on my permanent residency permit application. It’s now an essential item for me to c0ntinue living in the Netherlands now that Brexit is done. I’m no longer a European citizen. There was some confusion over the original conditions for staying because not only do I not work, pay tax or contribute to a pension fund, I don’t have a bank account, any income of any sort, not even benefits or an employment number. Bear pays for everything as was our deal ten years ago.

This posed a bit of an issue until we were informed that as long as Bear earned enough money to keep us both, was up to date with his taxes and had evidence of both for the past five years that was all that was needed for my application. So today we had to upload 12 documents, one at a time, and go through a repeated process of confirming name, birth date, phone number, email address and case number for every document. Jeez.! You’d think they’d have all those relevant questions on one page, instead of five separate pages that you have to scroll to the bottom to confirm and then click ‘Next’… and I thought British bureaucracy was ridiculous.! Smh.

I found this awesome recipe for pineapple salsa to go with the bean burgers I’m making for dinner tonight. I highly recommend it, it’s bloody awesome. Of course I didn’t follow the recipe completely, I never do. I added Habanero pepper instead of Jalapeno and black pepper and chives. Bear wants me to make it again at the weekend to take to The Mommy’s with us for the girl child’s birthday BBQ. She was 15 yesterday and spent it with her mother, brother, stepfather and step-brother. Bear called her and had a chat and I sent her a text message. She’s not really a birthday kind of kid, like her father it’s just another day and she finds it weird that people make a fuss of such things.

Dealings With My Ex, Mutual Friends & The New Bed

I got a nasty surprise yesterday that temporarily caused my rather sensitive stress levels to rise like a Pheonix. #2 son messaged me and asked if he could have my mobile number, as his father wanted to talk to me about something really important. The very mention of the man still causes my stress levels to rise and my caustic sarcasm to surface. Having not one miniscule reason to want to talk to the guy, even to exchange unpleasantries, I refused and told him his father could email me. Explaining that past experience had taught me that anything his father vocalised was always to be taken the wrong way by me and vice versa. Which is why we are in the stand-off we are and have been since December 2017.

So he suggests Messenger, which means that I not only have to unblock my ex-husband from my Facebook, but that he would also have access through mutual friends to my comments and posts on other people’s profiles. Not happy, but as I haven’t written anything about him in four years not unduly worrying. So I unblocked him, read what he wrote and agreed to the proposal. Somewhat surprisingly I discovered my name was on the property deeds of a house he bought in December 2006. The only involvement I had with that house was re-decorating it in three days, after he bought it three weeks before we were due to relocate to Germany.! So to suddenly be told my name was on the deeds was something of a ‘Eh.?’ moment.

I have no idea why my name would be put on the deeds, because I had no job, so no income, didn’t pay tax and to be honest, it wasn’t like my ex- to include me in anything remotely ‘adult’ when we were together. I was a possession just as much as the house was. That aside, he explained that he needed to make changes to the mortgage that he’d had on the place since 2006 and was thinking of re-financing because his current tenant had been furloughed from his job and couldn’t afford to pay the full rent, so my ex- had been subsidising the rest and wanted to ask for a mortgage holiday until such time as the pandemic conditions had been lifted. Which he couldn’t do without my consent.

He asked if I’d sign the house over to him as I had no stake in it and didn’t live in the UK either and hadn’t for fourteen years. I agreed to the proposal. Bear thinks I’m mad not to get some kind of financial deal out of it. I got nothing out of my divorce, I was lied about in the most vindictive, vicious ways, I lost my children, people I had believed were friends, I was painted as a cheating slut across social media and even my own family weren’t sure what was true and what wasn’t. Bear thinks a dose of revenge by financially screwing my ex- over would be a little justice, but honestly, it wouldn’t. It would make everything worse. I want nothing from that man. Absolutely nothing. For me, there is nothing there anymore, not even hatred.

He can have his house, keep all his tens of thousands of pounds and good luck to him. My life is far happier without him in it and I intend to keep it that way. My ex- is and always was manipulative, narcissistic and vicious and would take a great deal of pleasure in painting me as a money grabber and himself as a victim of greed and revenge if he didn’t get exactly what he wanted and not only do I not care enough to bother, I won’t have my sons hurt by his petty behaviour, again. Another surprise upon unblocking my ex- was finding that my sister is a mutual friend, as is my stepmother’s best friend and #1 son. It’s surprising because my ex- tried to get my sister to be his wedding photographer back in 2016 and offered to ‘bung’ her £200.

Honestly, he thought he could pay a semi-professional photographer £200 for his wedding photos just because she was ex-family. She made her excuses and he had to find a photographer who gave him exactly what he paid for. I felt for his new bride when I saw the photos he posted to Facebook. Yet another wedding done on the cheap. My stepmother’s best friend being on his friend’s list surprises me because he doesn’t like her and used to call her a dike, a slang term for a lesbian, because she lives with my parents and is closer than a best friend to my stepmother. My ex- thought their relationship was weird and kept going on about it being sexual, and called my father a cuck. So for her to be friends with him, is a little odd.

#1 son I guess is only keeping him on a friends’ list to keep an eye on him. #1 son said he despises his father for being instrumental in the death of his dog, who was put to sleep in November for some bullshit reason that basically amounted to my ex- being a negligent bastard, which is nothing new and the poor dog having age related issues. #1 son was devastated at her death and swore he’d never speak to his father again. We shall see.

Yesterday, Bear bought a bed from a local buy and sell website. He’s been looking for a king-size frame to put our old mattresses on so that we can sleep down in the cellar in the height of summer, when our bedroom is like a furnace. Unfortunately our house faces the morning sun and backs onto the setting sun, so we have searing heat all day in July and August and trying to sleep in 30 degree Celsius heat is impossible. I used to drag the mattresses down into the cellar and put them on plastic on the floor, unfortunately the cellar floor is concrete and absorbs and retains moisture, so the plastic was often wet when I tried to move the mattresses back upstairs. So Bear’s been looking for a frame.

He found this awesome electric bed, where you can move the slats up and down at the head and foot of the bed for only €75. It was the perfect size and could be dis-assembled to fit in the car, so Bear went to get it. Today he decided he’d rather have the electric bed upstairs and our bed bases in the cellar. So he moved everything out of our room into the girl child’s and took the electric bed upstairs and assembled it. Only to find it’s too narrow.! It’s not a king-size, it’s a queen-size. So now he’s pissed because he’s spent an hour moving furniture for no reason and has a bed we can’t use. He considered buying queen size mattresses for it, but I pointed out that spending €800 on mattresses for a bed we won’t use, except for novelty value was not a good idea.

And we won’t use it for anything but sleeping on. We don’t laze around in bed on the weekends and we don’t go to bed to read in the evenings. Bear’s usually out cold within two minutes of his head hitting the pillow and I wake up in pain, so there’s little chance I’m going to stay in bed once I’m awake, unless I haven’t slept well for a couple of days, then I’ll sleep in for an hour or so. None of the above would involve raising the head or foot of the bed. We don’t have the kind of health problems that would benefit from it, which makes me wonder why Bear bought it in the first place. Obviously Bear bought it on impulse because it was a bargain price and we needed a bed frame. He considered the electric part an added bonus and a bit of fun. Ever the teenager, that man. 🙂

Bear, Drax & My Fucked-Up Arm

I love my Bear more than (almost) everything else in the universe and I’ve never wanted him to change, but by God he can drive me to the verge of insanity sometimes.! He went grocery shopping this morning, very quickly, before a political meeting he had to be at by 11am. He had a list that went aisle by aisle, so that he didn’t have to backtrack. Yet he still forgets the bread. He was in the bread aisle, saw there was bread on the list, didn’t pick any up.! Similar with the Ibuprofen. I was awake most of last night in pain and we have no Ibuprofen left as I used the last one yesterday for the whacking headache I woke up with. Bear says to remind him to get some today, so I put it on the list, in capital letters, with an exclamation mark… he knows this means this is life-threateningly important.

He decided not to get any because they were only 200mg tabs and he was looking for something stronger. Bear in mind this is a Dutch supermarket which does not usually sell painkillers. They’ve only recently started selling things like Nurofen and Ibuprofen and Aspirin, and only in the lowest doses available. Usually, you’d have to go to the chemist’s or Apothecary’s as it’s called over here. So there’s no chance at all of finding anything stronger than low dose Ibuprofen in the stores. Still, Bear decides he wants something stronger for my pain and doesn’t bother to buy any Ibuprofen. When I explain that I could have taken three or four 200mg tabs and been pain free, does he then think that through, decide it was a good idea and then realise that he didn’t get any.! smh

Drax, is very much like his human Daddy, in that he doesn’t bother to think things through before doing them. Yesterday evening he decided his dinner time was at 6.30pm, when in fact it’s at 8pm. To inform me of this fact he decides to communicate as loudly as possible, as frequently as breathe allows and barks at me for a good 40 seconds non-stop. When I asked what his problem was, he jumps off the sofa, goes to the kitchen and rattles his food bowl. I then informed him it was only half past six and dinner was at eight, so he’d have to wait. Not content to wait and having his human Daddy’s level of patience he decides to bark even louder. An argument ensues…

“Bark, bark, bark, bark.!”…
“No.! It’s too early.”…
“Bark, bark, bark.!”…
“I said No.! Dinner’s at eight, like it is every day.”…
“Bark, bark, bark.!”…
“It’s six thirty Drax, look.!” *shows oven’s digital readout to dog*
“Bark, Bark.!”…
*shrugs* “I know, but I didn’t make the rule, Daddy did, see him.!”…
“Bark, bark, bark.!”…
“I don’t care, I’m not taking responsibility for your early dinner, you remember what happened last time.?!”

(I ONCE allowed the dog to have an early dinner, he was hungry again just as Bear got home from work so ate again, just a little… and threw the whole lot up at 3am.! Never happening again, Bear was so pissed at having to clean up kibble puke at 3.10am, when he was half asleep.)

“Bark, bark, bark.!”…
*gets phone* “Okay, I’ll ask Daddy.!”…
Dog whines in that ‘teenager back-talking’ kind of tone and slopes off to his crate.
“I thought not.!”

Even in the crate, he barks at me, mouthing back and I ignored him, only to be pounced on and nipped on the back of my upper arm. At which point he went back in the crate with the door shut to calm the fuck down, and so I can check if he drew blood. He’s getting really big and is very strong for a 14 week old puppy. I can no longer lift him up, he’s just too heavy. Which leads me to the walkies we went on 45 minutes after dinner, during which he pulled and pulled and pulled. I stopped God knows how many times to make him stop, and told him to ‘heel’ and ‘walk nicely’, but to no avail. As soon as I started walking again, he took off like a rocket.

The problem was the lead was wrapped around my right hand, to give him as little an amount of leeway as possible, so he had to walk next to me because he had no more lead to play with. It didn’t matter, he pulled the entire time we were out and I spent last evening and all last night in agonising pain with muscle pain in my hand, lower arm and elbow, which throbbed and was impossible to sleep with. I tried numerous positions trying to ease the pain, but it wasn’t happening… hence the need for a strong painkiller this morning.! FML

It now means that I won’t be taking pup out for a walk today because I’m incapable of doing pretty much everything. I barely managed to make dinner for Bear to take to work and housework is a no-no. Typing.? I’m doing it left-handed and one-fingered while resting my right arm on a small cushion. 😦


Nationally Syndicated Editorial Cartoonist

A Family History in Letters

Letters from the women in my family to their mothers from 1910-1980.

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The art of losing

gingerale kitchen

My mission is to give the world a unique collection of recipes and inspiration

The Belfast Belter

The Life and Times of a retired Soldier, Boxer, Pilot, Husband, Father and Grandfather

Reading Between The Lies

tales of untruths

Shine My Way

My memoir. Where I cuss a lot.


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