I would love to be one of those mothers who enjoys spending hours baking, painting, and building airplanes out of lolly sticks, but I’m just not.

Apart from the odd bit of cutting and sticking – who doesn’t like cutting pretty pictures out of magazines? – I hate pretty much all kids’ craft activities.

Seriously, they are DULL. View Post

This month I have been reading Freedom, the new book from Jonathan Franzen.

I haven’t read anything by Franzen before, so I wasn’t really sure what to expect, and if I’m honest I was rather daunted by sheer chunkiness of it. 570 pages to be exact.

I do love reading, I really do. So much so that in 2008 I made a resolution to read 100 books in the year, and managed 104. But, at the moment I just don’t seem to have the time – I read four pages in bed, fall asleep, then have to go back two the next night to remind myself what happened. I thought Freedom was going to take me years…

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OK, it’s not that bad really, not blood and guts gruesome, but everyone I’ve told in real life has been consistently repulsed, so I thought I would share – lucky you!

I recently went on a date, a blind date in fact, with a man I met through a dating site before I got too scared and hid my profile, and who I had kept in touch with via email.

It was a fairly regular, suitably awkward first date in most ways. I arrived early and settled myself on a sofa with the paper so I could be calm and collected when he arrived, and not do my usual trick of turning up ten minutes late, fighting the urge to run away and hide under a duvet. I was served by a rather dishy waiter, who maintained eye contact for slightly longer than was strictly necessary, and who rather threw me off my stride as a result – I couldn’t help but keep glimpsing him throughout the lunch and thinking ‘Hmm… I’d rather be on a date with you…’

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This weekend, in true summer holiday style, we went to Bristol Zoo, with my sister and my 15 month old nephew, Finn. Here we are see, proof that we know how to rock and roll with the best of them:

I’m not sure how to feel about zoos. I know there is a large chunk of opinion that says they are cruel, and you can’t help but wonder about the sanity of a larger-than-man-sized gorilla spending it’s days in an area smaller than my house, but on the other hand, Bristol Zoo actually does a massive amount of international conservation work, and isn’t particularly full of large animals pacing their cages, looking like they’ve just spent six weeks shut up in the house with a gang of toddlers.

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It’s a question that gets asked time and time again – are boys and girls just different, or do we raise them differently? Is it nature, or nurture? Only having girls, it’s a hard question for me to answer, so I enjoy spending time with friends who have sons, so I can compare notes…

Last week we went with my friend Vicky and her son Ashley to Dunster Castle. Living in Somerset, we really are spoilt for scenery and Places of Interest. Great if you’re retired or are keen on historic buildings, not so keen if you’re fifteen and like screamo.

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I saw this story in the Daily Mail today (I was looking for work reasons, not for pleasure), and just had to comment….

When I saw it, it was one of the lead stories on the home page. It showed a picture of two attractive women, one fat and one thin. By fat I mean perfectly normal UK size, not a size ten, but not some sort of fifty stone ‘the woman who hasn’t left her bed for ten years’ channel five documentary type fat. It was basically two ordinary women.

The headline next to it read “one is a virgin, one has had 50 lovers. Can you guess which is which? You may be surprised by the answer…”

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