Only the great architect Antoni Gaudí would think to decorate the chimneys of his Casa Milà in Barcelona with broken ceramic and champagne bottles. The rooftop is a marvel, and we caught it on a crisp autumn day last year. Do see it if you can. I am linking this post up to WordPress’s Weekly […]
My sister stood by my side as I took the clippers, nudged them in close to my scalp, and mowed the first straight track through my hair. We stared at each other in the mirror. Section by section, I carefully removed handfuls of hair and placed them on a tea towel in front of me, […]
Yesterday, four million Britons voted for the most racist and xenophobic party to have emerged in the UK for decades. I am guessing not many of them will be giving much thought to the citizens of other European countries who today are also celebrating the 70th anniversary of the end of the Second World War […]
When J was first taken into care, he was so hungry that he ate off the floor and out of bins. His appetite was insatiable, and it took him years to learn that adults could be relied upon to feed him regularly, and not to overeat in times of stress. Of course, he wasn’t taken […]
There are twenty school days left until the half term holidays and then J never has to wear school uniform again. By the end of the school year, his trousers are ready for the recycling box: frayed, shiny seated, their easy-care everlasting creases just a fading memory. But it is April and these pairs of […]
When I told my son J that he had a little sister, and what her name was, the baby girl in question was already a few months old. Seven year old J looked at me saucer-eyed, and with his mouth wide open. “But how do you know all that?” he asked me. At the point […]
It was a damp afternoon in February. I had an hour ahead of me with a family therapist, as part of our ongoing though occasional interactions with CAMHS’s family support services. Kate was asking me what I thought my future held for me….
Most parents don’t choose their children.
Because I adopted, I had that privilege. Read on to find out how I made that choice.
Crash, bang, wallop. J is showing signs of distress. “I don’t like this, mum”. In the middle of the room we are creating a precarious pile of his worldly possessions. J is moving rapidly, wrenching posters down, yanking drawers from under his bed. He is grim. Dust swirls around us. I turn my back and […]
I grew up only 50 miles from London, in a village which was connected to the rest of the world by a bus, and not very much else. Living far from school meant that we quickly developed a degree of independence which I think is probably unusual in children today. Every day, from the age […]
The diamond-pattern box parterre at Ham House in London is filled with Dutch Lavender. This forms part of extensive and beautiful seventeenth century gardens just a short walk from the River Thames, and barely changed in 300 years. It’s a lovely place to picnic. I am linking this post up to WordPress’s photo challenge on […]
** Silent Sunday