Monthly Archives: February 2014

About a dog ….

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Maxi our Yorkie will be 3 years old in march. I bought her from a friend , she was the runt of the litter , hence her name , she’s called Maxi because she’s mini., but it was the week after my nan had died and I just needed something new to love. To help mend a hole in my heart.
We had only had her for two days ( she was 9 weeks when we got her ) when she was having a sniff in the garden and fell down a very small step. She lay unconscious and floppy on the ground , So I picked her up and ran to the vets with her ( it was only a two minute run) it turned out she had cracked a rib which punctured her tummy. Meaning an operation and a four day stay at the vets. As well as lots of antibiotics and whatever else they add to the charges.
We weren’t insured. She was brand new.
But * luckily the bill was only £3000
* I cried alot at the shock of the bill. And got her insured immediately.
While staying in the most expensive vets ever it was discovered she didn’t seem to have been weaned properly before she was sold to us. So we had to pay for formula milk for her. Then prescription dog food.
But She just never took to dog food , she healed well and is now a fighting fit madam , she just never enjoyed food.
I tried everything. Every dog food available. I even went back and had her stay at the vet for a few more days so they could wean her.
Eventually we found she would eat chicken.
Not dog food chicken.
Sliced roast chicken * diva alert *
Flame grilled is of course her favourite.
She also become partial to rabbit food.
Not rabbit flavoured dog food , actual rabbit food ( we had a rabbit I wasn’t actually buying it for her ) the vet said she was growing fine and healthy so not to worry about her diet.
She lived for two and a half years on just sliced roast chicken and rabbit food until we got Milo last summer ( the cat )
She had a little love affair with cat food , mostly because she enjoyed stealing from Milo.
But she soon went back to chicken and guinea pig food ( no more rabbit food as our bunny died. )
Maxi has never asked to be fed
Not ever. Eating is a chore for her. And she likes it to be chopped up very small and preferably hand fed.
But …. Last week I was chopping carrot and peppers for the guinea pigs. Maxi watched me ,
I was watching TV a bit later and maxi kept coming to me barking and looking at the girls room. I thought there might be a lassie type ‘ Timmy’s down the well ‘ situation so I humoured her , I went in and she scratched at the cage , where the pigs live. I wondered if she wanted their peppers so went down and chopped some for her and sure enough she ate it.
Since then she asks for her plate of carrot and peppers every day. And she still eats her chicken.
She’s a palava , that dog !
She’s lucky she’s cute and lovable

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We aren’t on the playground ( part 2)

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It’s not up to me to tell people how to tweet , but …..
I’ve said it before and I will say it again , because I can ,
We are not in the playground , we aren’t children and twitter is not meant for bullying and nastiness.
I’ve not been bullied , and actually nobody has been nasty to me on twitter but every so often twitter takes a nasty turn.
There’s nothing wrong with having a disagreement or a debate , can you imagine how boring it would be if we all just agreed with each other but why do things have to get nasty.
Why not take your disagreement out of the glare of twitter and settle it privately or just unfollow each other and be done with it.
Why the name calling and subtweeting and involving others.
If you don’t like someone on twitter don’t follow them , block them , report them , whatever ….
If you don’t agree with someone but can’t make your point in a civil manner maybe just block them and eat some cake or something. If somebody offends you maybe they aren’t somebody you should be following.
Twitter is not the be all and end all of everything.
It’s just twitter. Use it , don’t use it , whatever …. Just maybe don’t use it to be nasty. Buy a punch bag , meditate , find something else to do with your anger. Something less angry. And don’t snipe at people just because it’s safe behind your keyboard , before you tweet perhaps ask yourself if you speak to someone like that in real life.
If you would then maybe social networking isn’t for you.

Anyway , twitter is a bit rubbish tonight so I’m going to put my phone down and read a chapter of my book.
Because I can , because if twitter is being rubbish and snipey I can just put it down.

Peace y’all !

🎉Happy one year birthday to my blog. 🎉

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My blog is one year old !
( actually it’s a year old on the 28th but it’s close enough )

A year ago I had the idea that I’d like to give blogging a go. As a hobby.
I had no idea if I would even find anything to write about , or if anybody would read it , but a year on it’s still going , people are reading it and I’m very very proud of it.
I’ve never really found a niche.
I’m not sure I want to.
I mostly write about autism and Ollie , when I started the blog I didn’t even know Ollie had autism. People that have been following from the start have followed that whole journey with me. It’s been emotional , stressful , sometimes hard to write but the support I’ve had from writing about it had been incredible.
I’ve recently started writing a lot of gluten free posts which have been received really well. And which I enjoy writing.
There’s also other stuff in there such as book reviews , I love books and I love telling people when I find a really good one.
I think ( hope) my writing has got better over the past year but some things haven’t changed. I’m not a planner. Who has time for that ? I blog about something when it comes into my head. Or when I can’t sleep at night. I blog in bed , on buses in the park. Wherever.
I’ve had a little criticism about my writing style because I write as I’m thinking , sometimes it doesn’t flow but that’s me , that’s just how I do it and it probably won’t change.
Every ‘ like’ that my blog gets makes me proud.
I love getting comments , it’s lovely to have written something that someone wanted to take the time to comment on. People have told me that some of my posts have made them cry , I love that ! Not because I like to make people cry but because it makes me proud that I can write something expressive and emotional.
And I love it when someone tells me a post has helped them or inspired them , that’s happened more times than I ever imagined. I’ve also discovered what a supportive community bloggers are and I’m proud to be a part of that.
Blogs dont really work without the readers. As much as people ‘ blog for themselves’ which I mostly do , just because I enjoy it , the fact is that once you hit publish you are putting it out there to be read , and there is always the hope that somebody will actually read it. ( in my opinion anyway ) so I’d like to say THANKYOU to every single one of you that had taken the time to read my blog , and for every like , share and comment , thank you.

Gluten free crumpets : review

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I was over the moon to find gluten free crumpets in the tesco free from range.
Sometimes you just can’t beat a hot crumpet with ( too much) butter spread on it.
I will say I wasn’t overly keen to try these , they look a little ‘fake’ I don’t know how else to describe it. A bit plastic maybe.
But yesterday I was ravenous in the evening so I took the plunge.

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Once toasted the crumpet actually looked appetising.

So , these crumpets are nice , very nice , in fact ive eaten the whole four pack since last night oops
But unlike most of the other gluten free things I’ve tried so far they didn’t really taste like the real thing.
I’m pretty sure you could pick them out as the ‘different’ one in a line up.
Disappointing because as I said sometimes you just can’t beat a crumpet.
These come a very close runner up ,
If you buy them expecting them to be just like normal crumpets you will be disappointed ( in my opinion) but if you buy them because you love a hot toasted snack I reckon they’d do the job just fine.

I give these a thumbs up 👍 but I’m only rating them a 6 and a half / 10 because they just aren’t crumpetty enough.
I will buy them again but I will be on the look out for better.

A beautiful tragedy

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Insomnia has me again.
As I snuggled down with Ollie
Tonight I could feel
Sleep taking over ,
I put my book down
Ready , ready for sleep to wrap me up
And replenish my tired soul

But the time ticked by
It never stops does it
Ticking away
Sleep had lost the fight
With insomnia
I’ve resigned myself to it
Tonight my tired soul will have no rest

But there is something beautiful
Imagine with me – if you will
A quiet house
Earlier filled with children
Making too much noise
The dog barking
Too much.
The cat meaowing
It’s beautiful.
When insomnia has crept in
And taken over your night
It’s beautiful.
Stop stressing ,
stop watching the clock
Waiting for sleep
And listen

Listen
I can hear ollie (9) snoring in my ear , I hear him sucking his thumb and I see him fiddling with blanky in his restless sleep.
Right now he’s not tic’ing or autistic
He’s asleep
Innocent natural. He’s just Ollie.
His sleep noises soothe my soul.
I hear maxi the dog and Zoë (12) snoring too.
That’s 3 snorers out of sync
Yet somehow just right.
There will be sleep talking too.
From Ollie and Zoë
If I go down a flight of stairs I hear 14 and 15 year olds snoring
Innocent natural
We argued today
But they are insanely peacefully wonderful
Now asleep
hearing their sleeping sounds
Fills my bruised tired heart
With love.

Everyone is home.
Everyone is noisy but if you
Just listen to the sounds at night
You hear contentment , safeness ,
Your hear love , in Their
Restful sleep you hear love

Insomnia is a tragedy
it robs me of replenishing sleep
My soul aches for sleep

But it allows me Time
Where I feel
I’m the only person awake
Where the world is quiet
Where I hear the beautiful
Sounds of my children sleeping.
I can feel alone but not lonely ,
I hear the house resting.

It is a beautiful tragedy.

Stir fry with Amoy gluten free noodles

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I’m not sure how I’d got to be 39 without ever having eaten or made a stir fry.
But I had. In my quest for finding tasty gluten free foods I found Amoy straight to wok ribbon noodles. They are gluten free.
So I decided it was time to give a stir fry a try.

I chopped
• a green pepper
• a red pepper
• an onion
• a carrot
• I meant to use a clove of garlic but I forgot to buy it
• and I used half a bag of bean sprouts

I cooked the vegetables and the bean sprouts in some olive oil , in my lovely new Jamie Oliver frying pan.
When they were cooked I chucked the noodles in , added a big splash of light soy sauce and cooked it for a couple of minutes more.

And that was it. It couldn’t be easier.
Why have I not done this before ?
It made enough for 3 of us.

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The noodles were lovely and the whole thing was delicious.

It’s going to be a weekly thing now I know how quick easy and tasty it is.
And I will definitely be using the Amoy noodles.

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And here’s a gratuitous photo of my new frying pan …. Just because

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On a mission to get a school , but which one ?

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My stupid anxiety is creeping back up on me , and Ollie is unsettled. Tic’ing more and generally more ” autistic” if that makes sense.
I know exactly what’s the problem. And so this next week my mission is to have a final answer by the end of the week.

The thing putting me and Ollie on edge is that we applied to the school on our street 4 weeks ago. It apparently takes 10 days , we also listed other schools , both local. We’ve heard nothing as yet.
All the talk of preparing Ollie is beginning to annoy me. What’s the point in practicing going to the nearest school “g” if he gets “a” or “sh” it’s unsettling us both.
Most frustratingly I know for a fact that all 3 have spaces in Oliver’s year.
Despite putting a preference on the application form I’mtorn between the 3 schools

• g , this is on my road about 8 houses down from mine. Obviously a huge bonus !!
It’s a good ofsted school. It has it’s own swimming pool.
Apparently good SENCO and sen provision ( not seen proof of this yet )

•sh is a fantastic school , 10 minutes If we take a short cut , 3 bus stops in crappy weather. lovely grounds , good sen but it’s Roman Catholic , I’m not against an RC school at all but I worry about how much science they teach. My kids are natural scientists. Also I worry about autism and theology side of things. will Ollie get his Head around the theology.
I really like this school though :-/

The third school •a is a little further ,4 bus stops away , or a twenty minute walk It’s a 1 form entry school making it the smallest of the 3. It has an sen classroom only for students with statements ( Ollie has one ) and pupils are able to access to both the main stream classroom and sen classroom as much as they need / can cope with. It’s a smaller building , newer , in amazing grounds.

I’ve decided I cannot wait any longer , or expect Ollie to wait. I’m going to visit the three of them this week , with ollies statement and I’m determined to end the week with a place for him.

I just need to get my head clear around which I prefer , I know which Ollie prefers and his choice surprised me.

this week I’m on a mission. wish me luck

” I don’t know “

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Ollie has a new tic.
A new vocal tic. “I don’t know ”
His vocal tics come and go , they change , some go ,some come back , Ollie is kind of used to them. A word comes out of his mouth , it doesn’t mean anything . Tics !
But this newest one “I don’t know ” is proving to be frustrating .
Every time he says it he wonders what it is he doesn’t know.
And then he wonders why he doesn’t know what he doesn’t know .
And then he’s sure that there must be something he doesn’t know if he keeps saying it. And he gets frustrated ,And annoyed ,And upset .
And then he gets over it
And then he says it again
“I don’t know ”
Round and round it goes.

The one where I’m a mutant mum but could possibly get a part in Eastenders

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Ollie couldn’t not settle down at bedtime tonight. We had forgotten his melatonin and for some reason he was completely hyped up as if he’d drunk 4 strong coffees.
He paced the bedroom floor for a while , sat on the bed with me talking gibberish and employed all of his delaying tactics such as needing to say goodnight to the cat , again and again , saying goodnight to the dog , checking what leanne was doing down stairs.

After a while he sat on the bed and said ” mum the problem is , I can’t settle , I want to go downstairs to Leanne but mum you are all being nice now and I know that when I go down and dont come back up you will mutate and come down like a mutated mum saying ” come on Oliver get your butt upstairs right now – with a cross face on , so what am I supposed to do mum ?’
He then did an impression of me telling him to go to bed and we laughed because I said it made me sound like I should be in Eastenders.

It did make me think though , perhaps I do go a bit fish wife when I’m frustrated with him not going to bed ( in my defence it’s usually midnight by the time I’ve got annoyed with him ) I’m going to think more about how I let him know I’m cross and really want him to do as I ask without looking like I’m auditioning to be Bianca Jackson’s long lost twin.

We were laughing now ,I’d said I’m an old age mutant ninja mum to which Ollie kindly replied ” no mum you have a few years till you are properly old ” humph !!! so I said ” oh Ollie you’re such an adorable little rebel” bad move , cue wibbly lip , tears , sniffles ” you been mean to me mum ” because rebels break laws and obvs Ollie doesn’t break laws ( Oliver’s words there )
Reminiscent of last week when , in jest , I called him a silly mongoose.

• I should have quit while he was laughing
•ollie doesn’t get joking / banter , at all , EVER. I should probably stop being funny.
• Makes a mental note to not ever call him as daft as a brush or a flamin galah

One week gluten free and loving the food.

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Tomorrow it’s one week exactly since I went gluten free.
As I’ve said in previous posts I decided to try this because I noticed that my IBS was so much worse whenever I ate pasta , or bread.
I was worried that I wouldn’t be able to enjoy any nice food anymore a lot of people think that gluten free means bland but I have been really pleasantly surprised.
As well as finding lots of nice things to eat I’ve been feeling a lot better.
I’ve had no tummy troubles this week , no migraines ( which I usually suffer from a few times a week ) and I’ve felt much less bloated and tired.
So what have I been eating ?
I’ve made myself pizza using warburtons gluten free wraps as a base

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I’ve been eating gluten free pasta with homemade tomato and vegetable sauce

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And used the leftovers to make a pasta bake

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The waitrose gluten free pasta is very good.

I’ve had lovely cheese sandwiches using the gluten free bread from the tesco free from … Range , the sainsburys own label gf bread is also very good

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And I tried the rice mac and cheese from Amys kitchen which I really enjoyed

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Today for my dinner I had toasted sandwiches , one with cheese and beans , the other with cheese and tomatoes using gf bread , they were delicious in fact, that I even ate them so quick I forgot to take a photo.

I’ve found lovely biscuits and cakes , ginger biscuits and double chocolate chip cookies from tesco are my current favourites and warburtons gluten free muffins are amazing

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This week im going to try a stir fry using Amoy gluten free noodles and pancakes using Mrs Crimbles batter mix. As well as some gluten free crumpets , and pitta breads which I shall fill with salad.

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There is so much gluten free food available and apart from some creme caramels from tesco and also tescos ‘ special flakes’ cereal I’ve really enjoyed everything I’ve tried.

Another good thing is that because I’ve been thinking much more about what I eat I’ve been eating a lot more vegetables.

Here’s to another week of finding and tasting new food.