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Breaking news: Man babysits daughter

08/04/2017 00:04:51 AM

A considered and thoughtful read from Simon on the ‘Dads Don’t Babysit’ movement. Ed This time last year, there were a flurry of stories about my daughter and me published around the world. A US writer spotted an angle for a “sweet ...

Write a letter you need to read

07/30/2017 02:17:10 AM

I was speaking to one of my young people this week about the foundations of their blog. They said: “I’m just writing the letters I need to read.” This got me thinking about the letters I wanted to read growing up (and later) and searched ...

Hang-ups

07/23/2017 02:37:35 AM

We all have hang-ups. Mine is unfairness, the origins of which are lodged in my childhood. There was the time it was suspected a teacher had taken a piece of my artwork (unproven); the time I won 100 marbles fair and square from a neighbour ...

Then the gun shots went off

07/17/2017 00:00:04 AM

There is little to add to Lara’s terrifying lucidity in her post about the London incident at Borough Market. My own grown children are in that market weekly and, like, Lara I could not stop watching the news – understanding what was going ...

7 things not to say to a parent who lost their child to suicide

06/29/2017 00:00:33 AM

I’ve learned that there are three kinds of people. Those who say too much, those who say the wrong thing and those who don’t know what to say. In my heart, and, I hope, in theirs, I know there is no ill-will intended. I know that talking ...

What do you know?

06/18/2017 05:17:47 AM

One of the joys (and pain) of being older is that we know stuff. From our first scraped knee to our devastated heart at a first romantic break-up. We know these things will pass, as scraped bits and battered hearts are wont to do over time. ...

Being 46 and learning to dance

06/15/2017 00:00:50 AM

I took a ballet class for the first time in 35 years. Why did I wait so long? Believing I couldn’t dance The last time I took a ballet class I was 11 years old.  My teacher had told me I wasn’t any good, after getting a mediocre grade in ...

On marriage and the midlife crisis

06/12/2017 00:00:11 AM

Last week it was my husband’s and my wedding anniversary. We celebrated with hugs and kind words and time spent pottering about with our kids, getting on with the usual chores. In the evening we had a takeaway and dessert. In quiet moments ...

On the problem of too much time after the nest empties

06/07/2017 23:55:49 PM

I always had an idea in my mind that when the children had grown and left home, I’d have plenty of time to go out and about and DO things – potter round local gardens and stately homes, nip off to the seaside without a moment’s notice, ...

Making scarves for the homeless

06/04/2017 23:55:30 PM

Today I want to talk about homelessness and explain what a ScarfAThon is. Back last December Mr A and I went Christmas shopping in Gloucester. We were strolling along one of the main shopping streets in town when we came across a small group ...

Desire to be published killed her writing ability

05/31/2017 23:55:15 PM

When my children were younger, I wrote them an original story about four children. The characters in the story were loosely based on them (okay, a lot based on them) and my writing seemed to delight their budding imaginations. Spring forward ...

The pressure to resist being our age

05/25/2017 00:00:03 AM

It doesn’t matter how much imagination or empathy you’ve got, sometimes it’s hard to know what something feels like ‘til you’re doing it. What I’m doing these days is being nearly 50. (Less than a fortnight, since you ask.) From ...

How are you? No, really, how are you?

05/23/2017 23:55:32 PM

The Post-40 Bloggers’ writing prompt this week asked a simple question – “How are you?” The question was stunningly answered by blogger Hilary Farrow. Ed Whenever you see someone, you automatically ask “How are you?” We don’t ...

Why editing is more important than the writing

05/22/2017 00:00:13 AM

I’ve been a writer and an editor for most of my life. Of the two, editing is easier – looking at a piece of writing and seeing what it needs, rather than producing something worthwhile from scratch. I’ve learned a lot about editing from ...

How to spot the Instagram cheats

05/18/2017 00:00:16 AM

Being able to recognize an Instagram cheat will stop you getting ripped off and taken advantage of by brands, models, and colleagues alike. Once you know how to spot a faker you’ll be surprised at how many accounts are actually doing it and ...

Social media voyeurism and connections

05/09/2017 00:00:20 AM

What did we do before social media? Well I know what we did, of course and what we didn’t do. We didn’t know our friends and acquaintances every move, thought, or action punctuated by a thumbs up or a heart emoji. We never saw thousands ...

Remember the difficulties of trading without the single market?

05/04/2017 00:00:07 AM

Yesterday an opinion poll suggested that a majority of voters want the UK to remain in the single market. It’s encouraging that the majority take this view, as I’m old enough to remember the difficulties of trading without it. In the 1980s, ...

Status update: I’m not bikini ready

05/01/2017 08:45:55 AM

Today I made my annual swimsuit pilgrimage to the local TJ Maxx, to throw myself upon the dressing room altar in appeasement of the god of delusion. Fortunately, this trek gets easier every spring, as I haven’t been bikini-ready in over a ...

I’m going in – talking to my daughter about puberty (gulp!)

04/26/2017 00:00:58 AM

I’ve been meaning to talk to my daughter about puberty for nearly 18 months now, but somehow it just didn’t happen. We were always busy and it was hard to find time, as well as space where we wouldn’t be interrupted by the boys. But she’s ...

Then I hit my fifties

04/21/2017 00:00:02 AM

When I was in my early twenties, I spent the majority of my nights club hopping and dancing to Madonna until 4:00 a.m. I drank an obscene amount of rum concoctions and still made it to work each morning without a hangover. I felt unstoppable, ...

The day I lost my young son Peyton to suicide

04/17/2017 03:04:33 AM

Parents held their children a little closer after we published David’s post on dealing day-to-day with the death by suicide of his young son Peyton James. (‘When every red headed nerdy kid reminds you of your dead son.’) Today, we publish ...

Relationships – what every second wife needs to hear

04/04/2017 23:55:11 PM

The most romantic statement Gabe ever made to me didn’t happen on our wedding day. He didn’t declare it at the base of the Eiffel tower, or pen it in a greeting card. It caught me by surprise as we were out to dinner on a rare weeknight ...

To appeal to non-Christians, National Trust drops word Easter from annual egg hunt

04/04/2017 15:12:20 PM

Theresa May has condemned the National Trust for omitting the word “Easter” from its annual children’s egg hunt, saying she was furious both as the daughter of a vicar and as a National Trust member. Church leaders criticised the National ...

Do you know which gifts are unsuitable for people undergoing chemo?

04/02/2017 23:55:43 PM

Anikka Burton was just 17 when her mother died from breast cancer. Devastated by her loss, she became increasingly worried that she was at risk too. She decided she wasn’t going to wait to find out, and asked her doctor for a mammogram; she’d ...

Major organisations supporting Save Our Adult Education Campaign

03/27/2017 23:55:15 PM

A who’s who of major FE organisations have thrown their support behind FE Week’s #SaveOurAdultEducation campaign. Big names on the list include the Association of Colleges, the Association of Employment and Learning Providers, and HOLEX. ...

Raising my autistic son: Psychologically preparing for Mothers’ Day

03/26/2017 03:50:41 AM

As usual I have reminded my kids that I would appreciate a card from each of them – a token of appreciation for the things I do. Sometimes I have received gifts and flowers and I’ve even been made breakfast in bed, but honestly a card, shop ...

Breaking through those limiting beliefs

03/24/2017 00:55:24 AM

The breakthrough session was about the ways in which we limit ourselves and thereby limit our lives. We are so sure of what we can’t do and what can’t possibly be, that it becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. When I tried to do the homework ...

The no clue grandmother

03/22/2017 01:00:05 AM

I don’t know about you, but when I was in my 40s the last thing I was thinking of was becoming a grandmother. Heavens, I didn’t even know how to knit! My daughter, however, had other plans, and just after my 47th birthday she gave birth ...

My perfectionism is ruining everything

03/20/2017 01:00:00 AM

I am a perfectionist. One locked in a constant struggle to overcome the habit. For I see my pursuit of perfection as nothing short of a vice. Imperfections become irrelevant when you learn to look beyond them and fall in love with what you see. ...

Chaos and Conversation on adoption

03/16/2017 01:02:14 AM

Have you ever wanted something so desperately that you actually cannot voice your desire? That the fear of hearing the words out loud is so scary that your stomach does flip flops. That when people tell you to release your hopes into the universe ...

Why you can stop feeling guilty about editing your photos

03/15/2017 00:55:08 AM

Every time we reach the editing module of A Year With My Camera I have at least 1 in 10 students tell me that they will be skipping this part because they believe in getting the photograph right when they take it, not fixing it afterwards. And ...

Is it just me wishing my husband was dead?

03/09/2017 06:00:46 AM

This morning I burst into tears. I have a history of depression, I have managed to cope with major life changes without resorting to tablets and I am proud of this. However, this morning I was reading my timeline on Twitter and I just burst ...

Important tax information for UK bloggers

03/09/2017 00:30:30 AM

It can be so exciting when you start making money from your blog! Whether it’s cash for sponsored posts, selling advertising space or payment in products (yes that counts), earning from blogging feels amazing, right? I’ve been blogging for ...

This International Women’s Day, be BOLD!

03/07/2017 00:30:12 AM

For International Women’s Day 2017, we’re asking you to #BeBoldForChange. Call on the masses or call on yourself to help forge a better working world – a more gender inclusive world. International Women’s Day as a vehicle for change, ...

Hello world!

03/05/2017 09:01:04 AM

Welcome to WordPress. This is your first post. Edit or delete it, then start writing!

Are you secretly dissatisfied with your life?

03/02/2017 23:55:09 PM

I started my career as a classroom teacher. I loved working with young children but opportunities took me out of the classroom and put me into another realm of education. I loved this work, too. I loved it enough to spend close to 14 years doing ...

When is it time to quit that writing dream?

02/27/2017 23:55:36 PM

If you’d suggested to me last year that I wouldn’t have a book contract for my novel, What The Valley Knows, by now I would not have believed you. Landing a bona fide New York literary agent felt like a major victory after writing my ...