I wasn't going to do this this week, but then I am like an addict and just had to.
But I knew which pictures I would use straight away. I knew what I wanted to say.
So Week 13 of the Gallery - here it is, Friendship
You have your friends when you are little, they mean the world to you. You giggle and laugh and tell jokes for the first time, you learn playground games, discover loyalty, real friendship. You also get to be fairies together.
I am the one on the kings lap, four of the eight girls were my bestest friends and infants and juniors.
Then we went to secondary school and made some new friends and kept some of the old.
We climbed mountains together.
Literally. I am the one at the back with the straight hair, Bam Bam styley. All my friends were skinny with dark curly hair. If they weren't so lovely, there is no way I would be friends with them!
As time went on we went to college and settled down, we picked up some new friends along the way and kept all of the old.
This is my favourite picture of my bestest friends about 12 years ago at my friend Biggle's wedding. We hadn't discussed what we were all wearing but turned up in basically the same dress. It was a gorgeous day and we spent it drinking champagne with our feet in the Severn. Lovely.
I am the bleached blonde on the left.
The oldest friend in this photo I have known 40 years (I am 42), the newest friend I have known 24years. We have a lot of history. That is why I never really expected to make any new friends... and yet, who knew...Here is The Gallery Lady herself. Tara.
Tara and I pretending our eldest children our still our babies, much to their embarrassment.
Tara is a talented writer and photographer as I am sure you all know, but she is also a sharing person, she got me started on the blogging, and she works hard to make her friends happy. She is a great listener and we laugh. A lot.
Last but not least is my BFF, my best friend for ever, he is the man I love, I talk to him about everything. He was my friend from 1994, he held my hair when I got sick, he looked after me when my then boyfriend was horrible, he was a great friend then. He became my boyfriend in 1998 and continued to be my best friend. We have been married to him since October 2001. He is the dogs bollocks and I am extremely lucky.
And without him, there is no way I would have the fantastic life I have now with him and my beautiful girls.
I am a very fortunate person to have all these gorgeous, fabulous people in my life, I am very thankful.
I am normally behind the camera, but I have gone a-rummaging and found some old stuff and made a new thing for this weeks Gallery over at Tara's Sticky Fingers.
When I have my photo taken, I use the traditional method of using my children as a human shield to hide my post baby body.
Here is a good example of this:
And again, here:
Alternatively you can just cut the bits you don't like out of the photo. Like here:
This picture is an extremely unusual one, this is a full frontal that I don't hate. And it has one of my children in it and I appear to be participating in a family activity...because looking at most of my photo's my husband does the fun stuff whilst I am just the person with the camera. I would also like to introduce you to Ted, he's the donkey.
(I am a little concerned I have used 'full frontal' and 'Ted the Donkey' in one paragraph, but hey ho).
So these are me - Mummy.
This is me when I am playing:
I realise I have angry eyes on this one - so here I am again.
So there you have it. Me. Now. A little bit photo-shopped, a little bit disjointed but all me.
I like men. I am happily married, have a great Dad and have some fantastic male friends, so when Tara at Sticky fingers suggested Men for the Gallery I was really pleased. Here are a few of my favourite chaps.
So what do you buy your forty something friend who has everything......last birthday, all of our friends clubbed together and we got her a Radley handbag, which she loved.
The thing is, this friend is far from conventional, she has moved to Arthog (or Middle Earth, as my husband calls it) in Wales and is renovating a massive house to let out, whilst working at a local hotel. She makes glass jewellery. She has been taking care of her Mum who has been quite poorly and her fella. She needs some joy and some silliness.
So I got her some.
As we were all there we thought we would blow it up and get her to try it.
But she couldn't have all the fun....the rest of us needed a go...
So there you have it - the perfect gift of silliness and joy - It is orange with a big smiley face and horns. The space hopper.
Tara has set the Gallery challenge once again to find the special places (or Tree's if you are Tara) that make you go ahh... Here are mine.
This is home. This was the view from my window where I grew up. This was taken in a small village called Bayston Hill, near Shrewsbury. The hills in the distance are the Stretton Hills.
This is a view from Albrighton Hall. This is a beautiful old house in the wilds of Shropshire, that you can go to for meals or to get married or whatever really. We (my family) usually go there once a year around the time of my Mum and Dad's wedding anniversary (they are on there 54th year - so every year is a celebration). For some reason, whenever we go the weather is always beautiful. You eat in the gorgeous Georgian (?) interior and then sit outside on the lawn or have a little walk around the lake.
This is the beach at Borth in Wales, near Aberystwyth. My Grannie had a holiday home here when we were really little and I remember playing on this beach. My cousin now has a caravan near there at Clarach Bay (also lovely) and we stay sometimes.
And last but not least - This is the West of Ireland. My in-laws live there. They have a house in the middle of no where - we go across as often as we can afford and it seems to be always a bit sunny, a bit rainy, a bit windy and a bit like this. But it is peaceful and relaxing and and my mother-in-law looks after us all (and there is great light for photo's - which is a bonus).
You know how everyone tells you before you have kids, that there will be a time when you are mind-crushingly embarrassed, by something they say or do. And you think no, surely not. Then they are little babies and you just think, this cute bundle of joy, NEVER.
Well my seven year old delivered this devastating blow on Sunday.
Oh My God.
I mean, seriously, Oh MY GOD!!!! (or whatever deity or non- deity you are into - NVQ, in Equality and Diversity kicking in)
My daughter likes numbers, which is great, she takes after her Dad. I prefer words myself and never really thought her number thing would be an issue. Until last Sunday.
She knows the ages of every person in our family except Nana. Nana, never turned fifty, I know, because I was not allowed to celebrate this birthday.
No one officially knows the age of Nana, it is a thing of family myth and legend. I have no doubt, that my eldest will find out. It's just a waiting game. Nana doesn't know it yet, but Ninja Number Eldest is after her.
I don't know what I weigh, I rely heavily (literally) on the fit of my clothes. I haven't weighed myself on scales since some time around by wedding day (10 stone 7 pounds by the way) 9 years ago. I don't think it is healthy to frequently be weighing yourself and I have two daughters. The last thing I want them to see is there Mum constantly weighing herself. There was a brief moment on the Wii Fit when the evil machine told me what I weighed with never a by your leave. The Wii Fit and I are no longer speaking. It made my mini Mii have a wobble tummy which my Mii slapped - playfully...hmmmmmm. But I digress.
Suffice to say, two kids and giving up smoking has taken it's toll and I no longer weigh ten stone 7 pounds, I weigh a bit more than that.
My Ninja Number Eldest on Sunday (after lunch, she couldn't have done it before!) brought the scales down from the bathroom (we were at my Mum and Dads) and in age order (I was 4th out of 10- brilliant) made us have a weigh in.
She then proceeded to write our name and ages on little index cards which Grannie (Nana, lives in Ireland and escaped this torture) helpfully provided - Grannie has always been a 'skinny jim' harrumph.
After my husband, I came out 2nd heaviest. Heavier than my Dad and my Brother. Oh how they laughed.
!"£$%^&*( Bloody "£$%^&*()_skinny f******* B******** and other expletives.
Oh how I grimaced inside. I couldn't not do it as it would have sent a 'Bad' message - but OMG I am now seriously depressed.
What would you have done?
Some of my Skinny Family including the number ninja
I have been given the very lovely Kreativ Blogger award by Tattooed Mummy, thank you for this. However, there are strings attached and I have to follow the rules below:
1. You must thank the person who has given you the award - Check
2. Copy the logo and place it on your blog - Check
3. Link the person who has nominated you for the award - Check
4. Name 7 things about yourself that people might find interesting. OK on to that in a minute.
5. Nominate 7 other Kreativ Bloggers - Check (see below)
6. Post links to the 7 blogs you nominate - Check
7. Let the nominated victims bloggers know they have been tagged - Check
OK then. Seven things people might find interesting...Hmmmmm
So I asked my husband and - bless him - he came out with loads of loveliness, about my open mindedness and how I see the good in people - but after we got past that, he helped me with some of the below:
I think I may be more tattooed than Tattooed Mummy. I have had: a symbol for Libra on the base of my spine, then when I got engaged, my future husbands star sign, which is Taurus, put around it - Then when I had Heather (child number 1) I had Scorpio added to that. Oh, I forgot, my first tattoo - which I had when I was 29, was a daisy on my shoulder, then I had a Virgo symbol round that for Lola (Child number 2 - there was no more room on the base of my spine) - and now I also have a sort of squirly hand drawn thing on my shoulder which took two goes until I got it right. Tattooing is addictive.. I would like something else, somewhere else, but I am not sure where - any suggestions? A little bit of squirly tattoo on view above.
I don't like velvet - It is like nails down a blackboard to me. When I was a teenager, when we went on coach trips I had to take something to sit on to avoid the velour (cheap velvet is even worse). When I had my first baby people who didn't know us that well sent her velvet clothes...sorry - she never wore them. As time has gone on, I cope with this, my children have the odd velvety toy which I sometimes have to move with my thumb and forefinger with a look on my face like I have smelt something really bad. ***shudder*
I won't eat anything I have kept as a pet. I have no idea where this has come from, but I will not eat rabbit (Harvey the Rabbit was my big rabbity friend when I was a kid, and I won't eat duck - Bubble and Squeak - the ducks, were great - they thought they were chickens - And yes I had chickens, but they are pure evil and deserve to be eaten - there is another blog there)
I like Sci-fi and X Factor - I have a very mixed taste in my TV. I can happily watch Dr Who, V, StarTrek, Stargate - and then turn over and watch X Factor, So you think you can Dance etc. It's the same with films - I love a big all action film (watched Gamer last night) but will happily watch StarTrek, 28 Days Later, Hot Fuzz, anything with Sandra Bullock - old films - The Road movies with Bob Hope were great, Chicago is fab. I love a film, me. The same goes for books and Music - I have just finished the first couple of (kids books) Vampire Assistant saga, and I am now reading a Nick Hornby and my Husband took me to see LCD Sound System - which I had never heard of before - but now love. I will try any genre once - just to see. You don't get old if you can keep your mind open.
We have had a hamster for one week - her name is Bella and she is a Chinese Winter Dwarf Hamster (apparently) and she is the angriest little animal that I have ever met - I have had hamsters before but never have they stood up on their hind legs and shouted at me in weird Hamster sounds before. I am a little bit afraid of her you can see her here or below.
'You know more about Ireland than any English person should know' This is a quote from my husband, I am not entirely sure what he means, but I have known him 17 years been married for 9, known his family for most of the 17 and been back and forth between Birmingham and the West Coast of Ireland (and Dublin) for years.
And finally, and I am not sure this is interesting or surprising. I am a geek, I love technology. If I could cuddle it I would. I love that I can talk to people without seeing them or with seeing them, I love push buttony stuff, I love love love digital photography and all the joy that brings me. If I could sit at home and play with new technology I would be the happiest girl in the world, but alas it is not so.
**And now a subliminal message *** If anyone knows of anyone who could give me a job like that - please let me know.
Now who to share the joy with.
Cosmicgirlie - Can I alter this Meme for you and have your interesting things in photo's?