Sunday, 27 May 2007

Syd and Strawberries

Syd on one of his walkabouts

Our poor little Syd is a bit under the weather. He's off his grub and is not his usual perky, nice self. He's actually very grumpy. He's currently nestling away in my posh, hessian washbasket with bedding and food and within full view of the tv. Think the poor chap may have a chill due to the weather turning from hot to torrential. Or maybe he's lonely and needing the love of a good bunny? Or maybe he just likes living inside where he can be with us all (favourite past time being lazing on the sofa next to us)....If so, shall have to do something about his bodily aroma!! Maybe I could be lucky enough to find a decent second hand conservatory on ebay for a tenner so he could live in that..mmmm..I have a spare tv he could watch. Lol...can just imagine people going "eeeeeeeww!" at the thought of that.

We made a vegan strawberry cheesecake today, which was delicious. Did manage to take a photo of it, but blogger isn't playing ball at the mo and I can't figure out how to get it to go the right way up. Where's there a photographer or a mac expert when you need one, eh?

Junior with scrumptious vegan strawberry cheesecake. She's scoffed most of it!! Sorry if you get neck-ache from looking!

Saturday, 26 May 2007

Well, birthday day went ok. Lots of cards, etc.

Son no 1 cooked a meal for us, which was very nice. Saw my mum (courtesy of Son no 1), who made a huge fuss of us all and then Junior and I toddled on to see Son no 2, who was at his girlfriend's place. Lovely to see everyone...except I did not feel too good and, therefore, not too sociable, plus it was too hot. Not been feeling well lately so this little episode didn't help and by the time we got home, courtesy of Debs zooming up the M1 - son's maybe future MIL - I was feeling positively very ill. Orbiting head, stomach elsewhere, stiff neck, feeling sick. So, dd and I just crashed out on the sofas till morning!!

My lot posing.....and doesn't everyone have a copy of the Periodic Table on their kitchen cupboard?

Happy birthday for today, Hannah!!

Junior has been sketching fish! We were gifted a huge aquarium, which is still not occupied. Do we have fish or African land snails...or nothing? Shall have to think about this. Tropical fish would be a huge investment but good education-wise...water temps, ph, which fish get on together, blahdeblah. I would love sea horses, but they are just so specialised. Def no reptiles!!

Junior's drawings. Not bad!

We supported our local community and attended the local plant fayre today and came back laden with goodies. Plenty of plants, especially courgettes to replace those eaten by our local snails! Plus, there was the customary table top sale and we came away with carrier bags full of games (some educational!) and jigsaws. Got a pottery wheel for 50p. Guess what we'll be doing for the next few weeks!!

Plant Fayre Booty!!

Need to sort out the focus on my camera. Perhaps it would help if I read the instructions!! Note to self...go see optician.

Wednesday, 23 May 2007


You know, this growing old mullarky isn't all it's cracked up to be!! Bones creaking, menopause to look forward to - oh joy!.. plus added attraction of chin hair appearing. Then the memory goes AWOL. Some days I think I'm doing well if I can remember my name!! Ever go into a room or upstairs and forget why you went there? Well, happens all the time here in Min Land., Still, as the saying goes, there's always someone worse off (or older) than me!! lol.

Well, tomorrow I am officially VERY OLD - the big half century !! I was hoping that I could just stick my head in something and forget about it. Alas, 'tis not to be as Son no 1 and girlfriend have arrived from down south just to rub it in a bit more!! Actually, it's very nice of them to take time off work and drive up all this way and give old mother a prod, just to ensure that I'm still breathing and all that! lol. So, being eternally grateful, I let them have my bed and I tucked myself up on the sofa last night and watched a documentary on Scott Walker - he of Walker Brothers fame; the same Scott Walker with deep, make yer knees wobble singing voice! Ahhh! Apparently, David Bowie and other cult figures credit him with being the inventor of 21st century music (weird stuff). He is, by all accounts, Mr Cool in the world of the Cool!

Before I hit 40 I was determined to get fit and slim...didn't quite go to plan (embarassed look..sorry, macs don't have these hip emoticons..and if they do I don't know where to get them from. Well, in all probability, someone may have told me and I will have conveniently FORGOTTEN!!!!). Actually, I overdid the get slim/fit jobby and got thin and very ill. So, I thought...I'll try again (get fit and slim the proper way) for the next big landmark still a podge/walking eclipse, blah, blah....sigh.. Maybe there is hope for the next big one, seeing as I've discovered the delights of belly dancing!! :O)) Time shall tell.

Tuesday, 22 May 2007

Invite to contribute to EO's work on the consultation

EO Members may also want to participate in discussion with Members of the Government Policy Group in the Government Consultation Area of the EO Members Forum.

The Consultation encourages responses particulary from "home educators and local authorities" : there are more of us than them! We need to ensure that the overwhelming majority of responses are from our community, and that the many points, issues, questions and frustrations that we have all felt over the years are raised during this consultation on these guidelines. Leaving aside the thorny issue of whether or not Guidelines will be produced, effective, useable or make any positive contribution to LA/HE relationships in the future, this is still a chance to get our views known, and recorded, which is at least a step forward.

The first question is:

"Do you agree that it is helpful for the DfES to issue guidelines to local authorities? "

Fiona Nicholson, Chair of EO GPG

For and on behalf of

EO Government Policy Group
governmentpolicy@ education-otherwise .org

Ahed Press Release


The DfES has published a summary of responses to the consultation on defining full-time education in independent schools. [1] The consultation drew damning comments from AHEd [2] in February as "fundamentally flawed, highly misleading and risks adversely affecting home educators by inadvertently or intentionally redefining a school". [3]

AHEd's consultation response [4] declared that AHEd members and the wider home education community would powerfully challenge any efforts by government to threaten the traditional rights and freedoms of all parents to choose the where, when and how of their children's education. The summary of responses from the DfES shows stiff opposition with at least ninety four percent of respondents not able to agree to any part of the government's proposals.

AHEd members are glad to see that the proposals received overwhelming rejection and claim that this result highlights the strength of feeling against over-regulation of provision where parents have elected to take full responsibility for their children's education. However, the DfES overview states that they are now exploring the best way to proceed to achieve the Government’s objective of ensuring clarity as to what kind of provision should be regulated. Home educators, including those who use tutorial services or meet to share educational activities, hope this means the DfES will now stop trying to regulate their private arrangements.

AHEd Chair Mrs Barbara Stark, said, "Home education is very different from school education and it is simply not fitting to try to impose school regulation upon home educating families. Home educating parents are well informed about their responsibilities and are already well regulated by the requirements of the Education Act 1996 which provides for local authorities to challenge them where a child is at risk of not receiving a suitable education. The consultation has born out what our members knew all along, that the proposals are unworkable and unacceptable, and we hope the Department now also recognises this "


Monday, 21 May 2007

TOLD YOU!!! - This is for my older kids!!!

You Will Be a Cool Parent

You seem to naturally know a lot about parenting, and you know what kids need.

You can tell when it's time to let kids off the hook, and when it's time to lay down the law.

While your parenting is modern and hip, it's not over the top.

You know that there's nothing cool about a parent who acts like a teenager... or a drill sergeant!

There will be certain members of our family who will be peeing their pants when they read this.

Sunday, 20 May 2007

You Would Choose Love

Money may buy a little happiness, but not the happiness of true love.

You rather have a true soulmate than a private jet.

And while many people may claim they would choose love too...

You're one of the few who would really do it.

Saturday, 19 May 2007

Psycho Cat

This is a pic of Cookie....psycho cat...words not required!!!!


Junior does really love her gran (Baba) and they have always been close. Anyway, Baba sent Junior a humungous parcel for her birthday, full of girly things, like chocs, biccies, clothes, art stuff, etc. Thoroughly enjoyed by Junior (and the cat is currently enjoying the parcel box as her new bed)!!!

Been thinking. Me and Mother are a couple of stroppy old cows sometimes but, when it comes to it, life's too short for hormones!!!

New Doctor Who fan

Never thought I'd see the day but Junior is into Doctor Who. She watched it today and then came to me and explained in detail what went off in the episode. She's really into the science fiction stuff now. More for the story lines and characters, not for anything like model building. Thank God for that....haven't got room for a model dalek or tardis!! lol

We did lots of puzzles today. She loves me hands down half the time. She's very observant. Then, onto some reading which is coming on really well. Some thankyou notes and envelopes were written and posted to the people who were kind enough to give her birthday presents and then a little food writing. We had quinoa today for the first time and both enjoyed it, so we looked up its origins and Junior made notes. She did note that the uncooked stuff looks like budgie seed, which I have to admit seemed a reasonable observation. Hope we're not tweeting in the morning!! Wasn't there once a claim on the Trill packets that "your budgies will bounce with health" once they got their beaks on the stuff? Will let you know if we trampoline out of bed!!

Friday, 18 May 2007

Your Brain is Purple

Of all the brain types, yours is the most idealistic.

You tend to think wild, amazing thoughts. Your dreams and fantasies are intense.

Your thoughts are creative, inventive, and without boundaries.

You tend to spend a lot of time thinking of fictional people and places - or a very different life for yourself.

Thursday, 17 May 2007

Can't get it to work. If you cut and paste, you get OK GO..Here it goes again!

Wish I was organised, too!!

You Are 96% Creative

You are an incredibly creative person. For you, there are no bounds or limits to your creativity.

Your next creation could be something very great... Or at least very cool!

Tuesday, 15 May 2007


Had a lovely afternoon with fellow home edders. You lot are a scream!!

Got hi-jacked by Home Bargains on the way home. Honestly, this hook comes out as you go past the entrance and oiks you in!!! Came out £18 lighter...but the pooches and dd are happy!!

No visit to the allotment today...too wet for weeding and obviously no need to water. Will try and get pic of ickle chick chick up tomorrow. And Feather....Junior's fave hen.

It's a bit addictive, this.....blogging and obviously talking to yourself!! Still, always said I wanted to be an eccentric old woman...and I am!!

Monday, 14 May 2007


Take it from me....don't EVER make gnocchi with wholemeal flour...whatever anyone tells you......unless you like gloop!!!

After a hard afternoon's graft on the allotment, we were looking forward to our we know. I heroically consumed mine and am expecting a blockage of sorts!! Have put the pizza in for junior!! lol

On the chick out of nine has hatched and it's a cutie....Shall post up piccies tomorrow. Junior has named it Ashlee (she reckons it's a boy/girl name) seeing as we don't know the sex...but who cares!!! She absolutely loves it up there. But, slap me on the head.. we went to the local "highly overpriced but tough" local shop and purchased a loaf of bread to feed to the chucks!! £1.09!!!!!!!! (We are on cornflakes tomorrow). We found a python sized worm when digging out the array of weeds. Honest, it was humungous. Called it Sir and let it go elsewhere. Why do kids have a thing about handling worms. Junior loves them but I draw the line at having one for a pet!!

Like I said before, we are really good at growing weeds. I read somewhere today that some enterprising fellow vegan had made liqour out of her batch of there's still hope. Just think of that.....Min's Moonshine!!! And so dandelions can be good AND bad for one's liver!!

I think I may be peeing off our fellow allotmenteers (who are partial to spraying the old glyphosate onto their unwanted foliage) but I'm not going down that route..even if my dandelion seeds are now floating all over the site!! (tee hee). So, shall have to clear old windy corner the hard way. It's my birthday soon, so shall have an allotment party!!! For my birthday each person please clear a square metre of ground for me!! (two if you owe me a favour)!! Ta very muchly!

Good education for junior....this is where your food comes from and it's not that it?

Syd rabbit (who is in his super dooper indoor accommodation, is horizontal due to boredom. No way am I letting him out, 'cos last time he chewed through my telephone line. Can't help it if the garden is a swamp due to recent precipitation and rabbit hutch and run are bobbing about at the bottom of it!!! Honestly, some animals just don't know when they're on to a good thing!!!

Still got snails coming in through the catflap.....they're after the pooch food...... People....I feed my snails on Bakers Complete!!!!

Tv has conked. We are reduced to watching Daddy Daycare....zzzzzz

Sunday, 13 May 2007

A thought for the day


An elderly Chinese woman had two large pots, each hung on the ends of a pole which she carried across her neck.

One of the pots had a crack in it while the other pot was perfect and always delivered a full portion of water.

At the end of the long walks from the stream to the house, the cracked pot arrived only half full.

For a full two years this went on daily, with the woman bringing home
only one and a half pots of water.

Of course , the perfect pot was proud of its accomplishments.

But the poor cracked

pot was ashamed of its own imperfection, and miserable that it could only do half of what it had been made to do.

After two years of what it perceived to be bitter failure, it spoke to the woman one day by the stream
"I am ashamed of myself, because this crack in my side causes water to leak out all the way back to your house."

The old woman smiled, "Did you notice that there are flowers on your side of the path, but not on the other pot's side?"

"That's because I have always known about your flaw, so I planted flower seeds on your side of the path, and every day while we walk back, you water them."

"For two years I have been able to pick these beautiful flowers to decorate the table.

Without you being just the way you
are, there would not be this beauty to grace the house."

Each of us has our own unique flaw. But it's the cracks and flaws we each have that make our lives together so very interesting and

You've just got to take each person for what they are and look for the good in them.

SO, to all of my crackpot friends and family, have a great day and remember to smell the flowers on your side of the path!

Not like someone I could mention!!

You Are Not Stupid

You got 10/10 questions right!

While acing this quiz doesn't prove you're a genius, you're at least pretty darn smart.

I'm just SOOOOOO annoyed

The Five Live interview...It wasn't balanced and fair. Shame on the expect more from them!! That bloke needs sorting out. He's just such an ignorant dinosaur. I think he's a plant by the ptb, cynic that I am. Anyway, his head must be exploding, due to the amount of bad karma I sent his way!!! pillock!!

I won't give him any publicity. He shall be known as door knob from now!!!

Friday, 11 May 2007

I'm on a roll with these!!!

Your Aura is Blue

Spiritual and calm, you tend to live a quiet but enriching life.

You are very giving of yourself. And it's hard for you to let go of relationships.

The purpose of your life: showing love to other people

Famous blues include: Angelina Jolie, the Dali Lama, Oprah

Careers for you to try: Psychic, Peace Corps Volunteer, Counselor

Your Personality is Very Rare (INFP)

Your personality type is dreamy, romantic, elegant, and expressive.

Only about 5% of all people have your personality, including 6% of all women and 4% of all men

You are Introverted, Intuitive, Feeling, and Perceiving.

You Are 64% Feminine, 36% Masculine

You are in touch with your feminine side.

Sensitive, intuitive, and caring are all words that describe you.

And you're just masculine enough to relate to both men and women.

Your English Skills:

Grammar: 100%

Punctuation: 100%

Spelling: 100%

Vocabulary: 100%

I'm not that gross, apparently!!

You Are 28% Gross

You're a tad gross, but generally you're a clean, hygienic person.

No one can be perfectly clean all the time, and it's better to be human than a neat freak.

We Battle on!

It seems that the home ed consultation has been officially launched. Had the e-mail from the ptb confirming this. I haven't sussed out how to put links in main text yet, but the stuff will be on the EO campaign and Ahed websites.

Apparently, they've given up on the monitoring and are concentrating on LA guidance. Hope they sort out the LA's, 'cos some are truly and horrendously disrespectful to us home edders. We've been on the receiving end of their ultra vires practices and it is a complete nightmare. It ruins lives. They have no concern for what damage they do.. or the law.... some of these LA individuals. They are just born-again-bullies.

Then there are individuals who are trying to make a name for themselves on the back of this consultation and the rising popularity of home edding - by slagging home education off and actually being quite unashamedly prejudiced. If you're not a nice middle class family who can afford tutors (namely him) then you are crap and you can't possibly be capable of educating your kids adequately. Jeez.....what a plonker!! He plainly doesn't understand home edding so why has he been let loose, apparently, as an inspector? Maybe someone with a great deal of patience should home educate him!!! Pete on Ahed wrote a great letter which put this guy in his place....bottom of the food chain!! Wonder if the newspaper will have the balls to publish it? And Fiona from EO goes head-to-head with this person on Sunday (Five live?) and I hope she well and truly buries him for spouting inaccuracies and disrespecting the home ed community!! And a community we are!! I'm so glad that there are people who stay on the pulse with the political and legal stuff and keep us informed. Grateful thanks to these people - north and south of the border.

Rant over....I'll go and take it out on the boxing punchbag in the back garden!!! (£9.99 - Home Bargains).

Am back...rabbit escaped again. Been trying to round him up for half an hour, even with the help of the dogs!! He uprooted my blue rose, dug another escape route to next door's and chomped my clematis!! Lovely little chap that he is!!!! He's now firmly behind bars and sulking.

Junior has done some lovely art work today, learned how to set up an email address, a blog and post on it. We've talked about alot of things. No need for writing..she gets it. Just see the look on her face!!!

Thursday, 10 May 2007


Well, I have had a bit of a strange day today. Been oiling my bed, which is a strange thing to do, I admit!!

I have a wrought iron bed which lately has started to creak and squeak. You know, the "nod, nod, wink wink" type of squeaking, except in my case there's nothing to "nod, nod, wink wink" about. I mean, said bed hasn't suddenly come alive like something out of Harry Potter, it's just when i'm in it, tossing and turning, as you do, it complains, I suppose!! I stretch, it squeaks, I turn over - it squeaks, etc. Now, this is ok during daylight hours but at night and living in a house with thinner walls than I am used to, this is a bit, err, embarassing. Wasn't aware that my luvly bed was giving out the decibels... until son no 1 (who stayed over for a couple of nights) mentioned it..saying that he didn't get a wink of sleep because of the racket. Makes a change from being kept awake by snoring, I suppose!! So, junior and I attempted to quieten beddy up with a vegetable oil massage, seeing as it's the only oil we have (apart from 2 stroke for the lawnmower). And, by jimminy, it works!!! So, being on a winning spurt (no pun intended) we sorted out all things creaky in the house, including bathroom door, too!! At last, I can go to the loo in peace without alerting the neighbours with the signature door creaking!! It was like something out of the Adams Family. Anyway, all done and sorted. Who needs DIY SOS!!!

Wednesday, 9 May 2007


The belly dancing is sort of coming on!! I can safetly say that we are all enjoying it. I am sure, however, that I would be murdered if I attempted to put on any photos of us "shimmyers" up on the blog. Suffice it to say, I shall be practising the moves and hope the dogs enjoy it!!.....thank God there isn't a Mr Min anymore...the worst the dogs can do is howl!!

Still on with the vegan diet. Junior today said that she just does not like the taste of chicken anymore. I don't force my vegan ways on her at all but, even so, she is definitely off meat. She looks better for it.

Monday, 7 May 2007


Today, I was jumping up and down with joy like someone demented as I have actually found an organic haven that sells the vegan goodies that I have been coveting for a while. Silken tofu and the like. And it's actually within my grasp, public transport-wise. I am a happy bunny. Shall be going there tomorrow with my granny trolley to purchase and bring home the goodies!! Yippee!! Junior and I have all these recipes we want to try...main one being a variety of cupcakes.

Our new vegan lifestyle is coming on and we feel alot better, health-wise. We've found so many nice sounding recipes, but they all require ingredients that one doesn't normally have in the store cupboard, but we'll get there eventually. Am after making seitan and creamy coconut pie (from the Post Punk Kitchen). Junior is adamant that she'll continue on the vegan path....she's made friends with the chickens on the allotment and has a chuck that she especially likes (Feather) so she can't bear the thought of eating even chicken now. We may even go down the raw food path for a while.

I thought initially that this new vegan lifestyle would be so very hard, but actually it's been a revelation and I wouldn't go back to meat eating now. Makes me feel sick, just the smell of it. yuk. And, I can look my pets in the eye, now!!

However, our so-called friends, the common snails, have completely munched our runner bean and courgette seedlings. little buggers!! So, shall have to re seed and put the pots on my bedroom window sill. Honestly, the little blighters even get through the cat flap!! So much for having three guard dogs!!


Well, this is just about typical of me. Black Comedy!!!

The Movie Of Your Life Is A Black Comedy

In your life, things are so twisted that you just have to laugh.

You may end up insane, but you'll have fun on the way to the asylum.

Your best movie matches: Being John Malkovich, The Royal Tenenbaums, American Psycho

Sunday, 6 May 2007

Tuesday, 1 May 2007

Our Poochies


Cilla Black

Bobby Dog


Well, came downstairs this morning to find Syd Rabbit sat at the backdoor catflap awaiting my presence and, more importantly, his breakfast!! I'd let the dogs out first thing and not noticed him tootling about as he is a grey colour so he blends in with the grey slabs and decking. It seems that the pooches just accept him as another pack member, which I think is cool. Same thing with the cats. animals are full of lurve!!

The wily bunny had managed to escape, yet again, from his super dooper hutch and has, apparently it seems, been romping around the garden all night!! Keep telling him about old foxy!! Anyway, lots of holes where he's tried to dig his escape route are evident along my borders....little tinker!! He's now safetly in his run munching on his food. I will put an extra lock on today!!!

Syd and Bobby Dog saying hello.

Junior did some times table work first thing...with no prompting from me. She also did some artwork on the iMac which I think is really cool and will try to get a pic of it up. Today she wants to learn how to crochet. This will help with co-ordination and maths.