ailbhe: (Default)
[crossposted slightly]
I can't decide whether I want to howl in glee or despair. This is very like reading What Mothers Do Especially When It Looks Like Nothing by Naomi Whatsername, in that I keep going "YES! That thing! That there! That thing too! That! MY GOD I KNEW IT MUST BE LIKE THAT! Those statistics don't surprise me in the least - wow, that's worse than I thought - NO WONDER I WAS AFRAID OF THAT -" and on and on and on.

I am very grateful to [ profile] radegund for recommending it to me and will reread it more slowly later on. Meanwhile, I recommedn it.
ailbhe: (Default)
I loved the Maggie books. And quite liked some of the Kevin and Sadie ones. But a nice moon always makes me think "a braw bricht moonlicht nicht the nicht".

We had a gorgeous moon on Saturday night, and Emer and Linnea had a lot of fun looking at it. It was even right on our street, at the end, so we walked towards it until we had to stop to go into our house.

Linnea thinks there are astronauts living on the moon wondering what it would be like to live on Earth.

Emer says "No fink so."

Today went well. In all, we had four adults and five toddlers and one baby, today. Lucky I did a big baking earlier in the week because I haven't had time since. I hope to get some fresh done tomorrow.

I really must read up on how to bake bread with a soft upper crust.

And show Rob Chocolate Fix, the game Linnea played.
ailbhe: (books)
I've ordered two books from Amazon which I've never read before, on [ profile] radegund's recommendation. I'm really excited.

Usually I'm only allowed to own books I've already read.
ailbhe: (Default)
Well, I just read six Malory Towers books in about ten minutes flat, and thoroughly enjoyed them155, and hated them intensely. They are rollicking good reads (I like a good rollick) but my word they are frightfully up themselves.

Still. They were jolly rollicking.
ailbhe: (Default)
104In spite of PMS I didn't actually injure anyone. This is a major achievement. I spent yesterday sizzling with rage and today incredibly, mindbogglingly tired. Also, I had to de-weekend the house; it pootles along ok Monday to Friday and by midmorning on Saturday is well on the way to squalor. I'm used to this, but it's hard work. However, 104the cleaning lady came and 105I've had a lot of junk food.

To improve our cashflow I need to move the account the child tax credit and child benefit gets paid into. So I need to find bits of paper and phone the guvmint.

106I've been reading The Audacity of Hope and mainly enjoying it, though I'm a bit surprised to see that Obama's not wholly opposed to the death penalty. He does at least say it's not an effective deterrent. Sadly, it's a book which takes more brain than anything else I'm reading so I'm working through it very slowly, but I'm kind of grateful it takes brain.

107The toilet did not get blocked at all today even though Linnea saw fit to play with loo roll again. The damn stuff unwinds so temptingly.

108I managed to stay technically awake until Rob got home, though I couldn't stay upright. Then I passed out for over an hour and woke feeling exhausted.
ailbhe: (books)
Father Figure is the touching, revealing story of how a perfectly innocent man comes home from work one day to find that his perfectly happy wife has walked out on him for no reason, taking the children with her, hiding them from him, using them as pawns in her power-games until she finally meets a nice man who keeps her in check and respects the innocent man's paternal rights. Oh, and the innocent man is almost but not quite accused of beating his children by the whoever it is that sorts out money - child maintenance people - and he's also a teacher, and practically everyone he works with is also a father being denied access to his children, one of whom kills himself after being wrongfully accused of giving his daughter pornography.

Oh, and the school closes down and they all lose their jobs and most of the students are being failed by social services and the head goes doolally and is failed by the mental health services so he goes abroad to get care somewhere else, Spain or somewhere. And someone ends up waiting for ages in hospital at some stage for a minor illness.

So that's families, education, and the NHS, all gone to the dogs.

Honestly, I keep having to put it down to laugh.
ailbhe: (nana)
Last night I managed over 60 consecutive minutes of sleep at one point. Between 7:15 and 8:20 am, actually, but it all counts. Rob took Linnea to the Farmer's Market without me, therefore, and I lay in bed nursing Emer and listening to Fi Glover and, er, Elvis McGonagle. It was very restful, honestly.

Then they came home and we had soup for lunch, involving a freak defrost-three-times-what-we-need accident, and then we headed out to the library. Where we stayed until 4 pm when they chucked us out. I have two books on gardening, one on bread machine use, one teen fiction, and one "The Bookseller of Kabul" by Asne thingy, whom I like.

On the way home from the library we stopped in to Sweet Masala for a masala dhosa and something Rob ate which he said was "definitely not vegan" but couldn't name beyond that. Then we went to the supermarket and bought portion-cartons of juice, ready-made cake, and a flamethrower.

I've wanted a flamethrower for the weeds on the front path and the patio for years. But they always seem very expensive, and it's insane for us to get expensive garden equipment; we're not interested enough in it to maintain anything.

However, I need to get interested; I must draw up some kind of plan for the allotment and start work on it. Rob will have to do the digging but I can probably do light weeding and so on. I should probably try to borrow a wheelbarrow so he can spread our compost on it. Ew.

The only downside today is that Emer was in the hugabub while Rob was frying onions (dinner is spag bol, any minute now) and she screamed blue murder. She has inherited my eyes, which I get in a direct line from my mother. Oh well; at least her mascara use will be strictly limited.

I must get a photo of my mother, myself and both my daughters.
ailbhe: (when baby runs)
I know other people were going to collect copies in person, and that's fine - but was anyone supposed to get one in the post who hasn't yet?
ailbhe: (when baby runs)
Well, that's a bit of a surprise. Every copy of when baby runs I have in the house is ordered by someone, now, and I only have two fair and one damaged copy of before baby walks left. I must say I'm surprised at how fast people got their spake in. I hope you're not all horribly disappointed; I'm not sure the print quality of this is as good as the last one, though my original sample was the same. It might be that bulk orders are done on cheaper paper or something.

Anyway, in future both books will cost six quid each from me (once the two BBW I have left are sold, anyway) or £4.28 plus at least £1 shipping from Since I'm about to have a baby, it won't be faster to order from me, either, so there's no benefit to doing it that way at all.

Another 39 books, and I can buy the second one an ISBN. This is fun :)
ailbhe: (when baby runs)
If you ordered a copy in this post, I have probably tried there to let you know where to send how much money.

I have a few extra if anyone else would like some.
ailbhe: (Default)
when baby runs is now available from As they have changed their distribution systems, it doesn't have an ISBN yet; I thought sales of before baby walks would pay for it but the price has gone up considerably. They're both £4.37.

Shipping: International Economy shipping is about 4 US dollars (GBP2.36). I can get a bulk discount so might, if enough people order, be able to get books to people in the UK and Ireland for £6 and £6.50 sterling respectively. The shipping discount they used to offer appears to be no longer available, so I can't sell 'em for a fiver any more. I still have a few before baby walks for a fiver though.

Pre-orders of when baby runs: 10 at 11:10 Sunday [enough for a bulk order because of lower shipping for multiple copies! I will be plascing an order at some stage on Sunday]

[Memo to self: also 3 before baby walks, which is easy.]
ailbhe: (Default)
I have received the books I hoped to get before Christmas. So I now have several copies available. As before prices in pounds sterling including postage and packing are £5.00 within the UK and £5.50 in the rest of Europe. I could in theory send to the USA but there's no point. Prices for other continents available on application.

I have what I can only describe as a limited number of copies, but I can almost certainly deliver them faster than lulu can. People in the USA are better off ordering from Lulu. I make more money that way, too :)

The poems included in the collection are these.
ailbhe: (Default)

Title: How Children Fail

Author: John Holt

Publisher: Penguin

ISBN: 0140135561

I haven't finished this yet, but so far it's eye-opening. Like What Mothers Do, it articulates stuff I already felt to be true, and it does it clearly. A lot of my difficulties as an adult are easy to see in terms of methods of learning and being taught and surviving school, and I am - again - massively, immensely, technicolouredly grateful to my mother for managing to encourage independent, questioning thought anyway, in spite of, well, everything she had going against her.

This book is going to be a useful reread even before Linnea is school-age, because I'm going to need to be reminded of it for myself as well as for dealing with her and with other people's opinions of how we're raising her.

(She seems socially fairly well adapted, so far, though she does have a faulty ranking system - breastmilk is better than bananas, and better than banana muffins, but not as good as Maya Gold chocolate, damn her.)

ailbhe: (Default)

Title: Teach your own

Author: John Holt

Publisher: Lighthouse Books

ISBN: 0907637000

Interesting nodding-head-in-agreement read, but practical-advice-based and very focussed on America before I was born, so not a whole heap of use really. But it's nice to read books that have me nodding agreement all the way through. Except possibly for the "leaving your school-age child home alone all day regularly" which sits all wrong with me - but then, that was an emergency measure, so not a regular recommendation.

Not, I would say, an essential re-read.

ailbhe: (books)

Title: School is not compulsory (The essential introduction to home-based education)

Editor: Education Otherwise

Publisher: Education Otherwise

ISBN: 0952170337

A useful guide from the UK's primary home education organisation, lots of useful tips about the law etc rather than suggestions for actually doing it (though some of those too). Definitely useful to get again when Linnea is "school age" - ie the first school start date after her fifth birthday, which I think is 01 September 2009. She'll be 5 years and 4 months then, so they'll start teaching her to count to ten and learn her ABCs. I can't see that, somehow. It seems very unlikely.

New word: Pwing (swing) and now she pronounces horse correctly, H and all (English R, but never mind). She's working on teeth, mouth, and flower, too, but not there yet. And she has a word for breastmilk - Thass. I have no idea where it came from - perhaps "Oh, that's what you want, is it?!"

(Home education: get up, tidy house, wash dishes, cook dinner - you've done "domestic science" and probably maths. Go shopping - maths and reading comprehension and all sorts. These books are really changing the way I look at my day. It's very funny to suddenly think "... and that's geography!" when I've looked up a train timetable or something.)

ailbhe: (books)

Title: Free Range Education (How home education works)

Edited by: Terry Dowty

Publisher: Hawthorn Press

ISBN: 1903458072

I don't often mention books here but I really want to remember which HE books I read and which I like. This is a good selection of essays and articles by parents and children doing home education in various ways and under various circumstances; it has really brought home to me that doing what's most appropriate for one's own family is actually OK, no really it is, and I think I'll want to pick it up again later to reread for reassurance.

It does also have some practical information, such as how to fight the LEA if necessary and what groups you can join to meet other HE families, but I suspect I'll be able to pick that kind of info up anyway.

(In personal news, I have just persuaded Rob to nap while the baby is napping. Goodness knows he needs the rest.)

ailbhe: (Default)

I have just discovered that some books I read as a child were by Gene Stratton-Porter and appear to be very hard to get in the UK (we all know what "limited availability" means to Amazon, don't we?) so I'd like someone else to do my thinking for me.

"Girl of the Limberlost", "The Keeper of Bees," and "The Magic Garden" are the ones I'm most interested in - and I'm not sure that "The Magic Garden is the one I think it is so a plot summary would be nice.

ailbhe: (footprint)

Today I was reading a book to Linnea and we reached a page which said "Sigh baby cry baby boo hoo hoo" so I boo-hoo'd. And she climbed over and hugged me until I was better. I almost cried for real.

And then she did it again when we read "This little baby makes lots of noise."

Yesterday when I said "Come on, let's brush our teeth," and headed for the bathroom, she stopped dead right outside and made "Make it better!" noises. She was standing next to the blue step, which she needs to reach the sink. It wasn't in the bathroom! and she wanted it there.

The two days we've given her chocolate cake, she had immediate and noticeable mood change: hyperactive, followed by cranky and unable to concentrate, followed by concentrating on being cranky. Also, she was very thirsty both nights, though that could have been the weather. So no more chocolate cake. Or biscuits. And now I have a reason if anyone argues with me - "Because I say so and I'm her mother" doesn't usually hold much water.

ailbhe: (smiling)

Got up, checked email and livejournal, had breakfast, brushed teeth and supervised Linnea's teethbrushing, washed dishes, cleaned kitchen, made dinner (hurrah for the slow cooker!), tidied downstairs, went to the doctor to confirm I'm well and that not finishing the course of antibiotics was ok, went to the library to return and take out books, went to the charity shop and bought some knitting needles and some yarn (eek! I have a Stash now! Somebody stop me!), fed Linnea her snack outside the library while I knitted, came home, fed and changed Linnea, and put her down for her nap. That was at 11:00. Then I read email and livejournal, bought a permanent account on lj, and gave my remaining paid time to lnc so that I can update that by email if I need to.

Shopkeepers all along the road know who Linnea is - they say "Hello, not on Daddy's back today, hey?" to her. By thy baby shall they know thee.

Now I need to wash some floor, and have some tea, and knit some.

The library couldn't find the Mantlemass books. I didn't dream them, did I? I'm sure I saw them on Amazon a while ago.

ailbhe: (working)

Linnea's bedtime has been creeping later and later - it's actually after 8 pm again now. Waking is still at 6:30 ish. Her daytime napping is down too - 20-40 minutes total. And she and I have yet another cold. Wow, I am too tired for this... I did the boring old collapse thing again today, though not until after 16:30. I napped on the floor while she climbed me - the only really awful bit was when she put her whole weight on her heel in my ear.

I read a book I've never read before, which doesn't happen often - it took three days, which is a bit slow compared to books I've read before, but it was quite enjoyable. "A Nice Cup Of Tea And A Sit Down" apparently. Made me want a lot of biscuits.

Also, every morning since 1st May I have had a yoghurt with my breakfast. So far, Linnea has shown no negative reaction, but my digestion is a little upset and I'm tired and I have a cold. I can't tell whether that's the sudden reintroduction of dairy into my diet, or the cold, really. I'm pretty sure the stomach upset is the sudden reintroduction of live yoghurt into my diet. I'm open to recommendations of good, unsweetened, unflavoured dead yoghurt - I've been buying Yeo Valley Organic Full-Fat for so long I no longer even consider making a choice and have no idea what to choose if I did.

Dancing and climbing and putting on clothes are Linnea's big things, I think. They're the newest things I can think of, anyway. She puts her poncho on and off, and is having a real go at her sandals - she now opens the velcro at both ends before putting them on heel-to-toe, but she knows that's wrong and gets cross. The poncho is easy. She also had a go at the matching panties that came with a dress I bought her for her birthday (like she cared - but oh! I do like dresses for nappy changes) but couldn't quite manage both legs at once.

My only comparison for this is me - I allegedly put on somebody else's panties correctly at eight months, but I think I shan't worry yet about Linnea's possible retardation. Although various people are getting all excited by her lack of language skills... Soon I may look up one of my books (the ones she hasn't read yet, yes, I know) to see when is "normal" for language. I know that my family wasn't normal at all, and certainly she has almost no motivation for it, since I can read her mind. She signs things to Rob that she just shouts at me for - like milk.

Oh! Funny story! Yesterday evening, at her bedtime, Rob signed "milk" to her, to see if she was ready for her bedtime feed. She climbed up on his lap, poked his shirtfront with her finger, and leaned over to me signing madly, "milk! Daddy's a liar! Milk!"

(The sign for "Daddy's a liar", or "false advertising", is primarily a facial one. It won't be in your book of signs).

October 2017

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