Wednesday, 28 April 2010

The Gallery - Portrait

The thing about the blogosphere is that it moves so quickly. I never officially decided to take a break from it, but a week of not blogging turned into a couple, which turned into a month which turned into a couple of those too. And before I knew it, I hadn't posted for what seemed like forever. And not only had I missed out on all sorts of memes, tags and awards, I'd also failed to contribute to a single one of Ms Sticky Fingers' Galleries. However, when I saw that this week was entitled Portraits, I decided that I couldn't abstain any longer.

So without further ado, I hereby include my two (sorry - couldn't just include one of my children) entries.

My children - Portaits.
Little Miss Renée - aged 5.

Little Miss Edie - aged 3.

Sunday, 25 April 2010

Is blogging bad for your relationship?

Well is it?

I need to know what you think.

I need to know that I'm not the only one out there who, and I quote a very famous blogger here, is prone to say,

"Not tonight darling, I'm just in the middle of tweaking my avatar".

I read a very funny article recently on Fuel My Blog which stated that the number of blogging-related problems has risen by more than 3000% over the last three years.

But aside from mental health problems brought on by paying attention to visitor counters or hurty fingers for people who can't touch type (both of which were quoted as symptoms), the real problems that I'm talking about are those which concern relationships, specifically marital ones.

Now it's no secret that I've been a bit down in the dumps recently (don't panic - I won't bore you with all that again), besides my husband would never forgive me if I told the world that we've been having marital problems.  But, you know what, we have.

So there.  I said it.

But what I want to know, is if it has anything to do with blogging.

As the Fuel My Blog article recommends,

"Involve your partner with the process.  For instance, get them to make you a cup of tea while you're blogging and say 'thank you' nicely."

Now, all jokes aside, how many of us have spent an entire evening (or erm, evenings) in front of the computer reading about other peoples' lives while ignoring that very person who we've chosen to spend our own lives with?  And how many times have we preferred to stay in and blog rather than go out and, erm not blog?

Are our other halves happy that we've found something to keep us occupied and supportive in our writing, or are they hurt and upset that they don't have quality time with us anymore and exasperated that we prefer our virtual friends to our real ones? 

I'm not saying that blogging is solely responsible for the friction within my marriage.  I mean the fact that we've seen each other for ten days out of the past 64 could have something to do with it. But seriously, as much as I love blogging and all the things that it's brought me, wasn't life just a little bit simpler before I discovered it?

I'm not sure. I'm still thinking about it.

Thursday, 22 April 2010

A little bit of Chocolate and Love

So we all know I've been a bit miserable of late.  A bit uninspired. And more than a bit prone to curling up on the sofa and sobbing until I've bored myself stupid with the sound of my own patheticness.

But, fear not.  I'm planning on putting an end to it very soon.

Besides, there's only so many times you can pretend that your watery eyes and swollen lids are because your contact lenses are playing up before someone starts to suspect the real reason you look like you've seen better days.

Sooooooo, imagine my complete and utter unadulterated delight when I opened an e-mail from Fuel My Blog a few weeks ago, asking whether I'd be interested in reviewing the 'highest quality chocolate that money can buy'.

Now I may be miserable, but I certainly am not stupid.

It had my name written all over it.


  • (a) I need to get back to blogging.
  • (b) I NEED some chocolate.
  • (c) I AM chocolate queen.

I mean, who else decides to eat chocolate every day for nine months during their pregnancy because they've read one article which states that chocolate makes for happy babies?  And who else is sent eight Mars Delights in the post by their Mother and eats them all in one sitting?  And as my husband says, only you can eat chocolate for breakfast, lunch and supper and not feel bad about it.  Well ok, you AND your Father.

What can I say?  There's a sweet tooth gene deep in my DNA.

So, having established my credentials and having let you in on a little bit of the background, you can imagine just how I was feeling when that parcel dropped through the door.


Just a little bit.

Did it matter that it was two days after Easter and I had already had my year's fill of the brown stuff?

Maybe.  But I refuse to be weighed down by irrelevancies.

The fact remains...I tore that package open like I'd been starved of chocolate for a year.  Two years.  More even.  I could smell it through the fibres of plastic wrapping and jiffy bubble wrap.

All those evenings of crying myself to sleep would be undone in an instant.  The moment that chocolate passed my lips, happiness would be mine.

I could feel it.

I emptied the bars onto the floor in front of me.

One, two, three, four, five bars of chocolate.

But hold on.

Organic dark chocolate.

Organic extra dark chocolate.

Organic extra dark chocolate with natural orange oil.

RAW chocolate.

Another organic extra dark chocolate.

I peered inside the package.  Nothing else remained.  I tipped it upside down for good measure and shook.  Hard.


I may be the chocolate queen, but I'm the chocolate queen who doesn't like dark chocolate.

At all.


The disappointment was palpable.

I could have cried.  I think maybe I did.  Organic dark chocolate bars may even have been thrown across the room.  And then I went into the kitchen and found solace in the form of my Lindt rabbit.

So what's left to say?  Well, I did of course attempt to eat it.  Tastes change over the years.  Or so they say.  Unfortunately, not in my case.

I still hate dark chocolate.

Organic or not.

Chocolate and Love or Terry's All Gold.

'Tis the same to me.

But all is not lost, Chocolate and Love.  You see, I had the ladies over.  Ladies who love dark chocolate.  I couldn't let it go to waste now could I?

And this is what they said.

Waxy, smooth, good without being too much, but not as good as Hotel Chocolat.

So 'not great, great then'? I asked.  'Well that's a shame', I said, 'because I have all these bars and they'll only be thrown in the bin.'

Needless to say, when  the ladies who love dark chocolate left for the night, there were no bars remaining.

Which is just as well.  Because I had my Lindt rabbit for company.