Monday, 29 March 2010

Jai's Jumper Photoshoot






This post was going to completely different. I had a wicked title and a poll all sorted because I really thought Jai's jumper (sweater) was going to be too small. 
Well it is a little on the snug side and could do with being a little longer, but it is no where near as small as I thought it was going to end up. 
So I'm chuffed, he's chuffed and we both chuffed (we didn't really, well maybe a little parp) during the ceremonial trying on.

Things to note:
  • He asked for the skull emblem.
  • He also insisted on the pictures where he rocks out.
  • He's a handsome wee devil though, isn't he, my boy?
  • He wants you all to know he will be 7 in 6 weeks. (and that makes me want to weep.)

Friday, 26 March 2010

Warning exercise can break you

I have broken my body.

To lose a few pounds that's all, maybe to tone up a bit, get a bit fitter.

That's all I want.

Back in the UK, for a brief time I did Body Jam, a class with my friend Julia. We went most Friday mornings for an hour. It was the first organised exercise class that either of us had set foot in since school. We enjoyed it. It was fun. Probably more so because neither of us was particularly good and there was a lot of giggling involved. We did sweat a little though.

Then we stopped going.

Then I moved here.

America has been a little harsh on my belly, so I started doing some Youtube cardio vids and some strength exercises, watching what I eat, calorie counting but not excessively. Personally I believe that running around after a 3 year old, trying to get 2 kids to the bus stop on time, cleaning a house = enough exercise, also knitting is exercise right, because you move your arms and fingers... but a little more doesn't hurt...BUT IT DOES.

I can't walk.

I have broken my calves from doing step ups, which I ingeniously stupidly thought would be a great idea. Sweat a bucket and tone your legs at the same time.

Exercise Fail.

What isn't a fail however is my friend Zan's new Yarn Store

Tuesday, 23 March 2010


♫Heaven, I'm in heaven, I'm in yarn delivery and organisation of yarn into neat little drawers that replace the pink basket mess of wool, heaven♫

Thea from That Yarn Store gave me a Sunshine award this morning. How utterly sweet, and totally replaced the lack of sunshine here in NJ today
With this shine comes great responsibility so here goes:
Here are the rules for accepting the Sunshine award:

1. Place the logo within your blog or post. (√)

2. Pass the award on to 12 bloggers. (cheating and doing 7 just now, but they are from all over he world)

3. Link the nominees within the post. (√)
4. Let the nominees know they have received the award by commenting on their blogs. (give me a sec...)
5. Share the love and link to the person from whom you received the award. (√)

Smiles all around...

Friday, 19 March 2010

It's me, slackermum

I'm affectionally known as slackermum.

Alright, well I named myself slackermum and it's perfectly apt.
My involvement in all things 'school' is usually limited to walking the kids to the bustop and cursing if I have to pick them up if they are ill. Last week or so Kia comes home with a letter about 'Immigration Day' where they will celebrate the trip our ancestors made on the boat over to Ellis Island (or in our case the 7.5hr flight on a Virgin Plane to Newark). The letter has the words 'volunteers needed' and I immediately switched off.  If I wanted to be surrounded by 30 children I would have become a teacher or Trigint-mum (hah you Duggars beat that!)

There was also a wee bit about sending in a traditional dish from the country your ancestors came from for the classes to sample. In true slackermum style I ignored that bit too. My cooking skills aren't exactly top notch. I am not her        ------->

Then Kia has a playdate and the friend's Mum, who if we were in a comic would be my arch nemisis in her very nonslacker "I'm in daily email contact with the teacher" way, raised her eyebrows in true shock and horror when I mentioned that I wasn't lovingly preparing a gourmet meal of epic proportions for this major 2nd Grade event that they will remember for the rest of their lives (rest of the week maybe) and that they were pretty short on main course dishes as many were sending in desserts.
Well the gaunlet was thrown.
I won't say I'm competitive because that would be too weak a word!
Trouble is what on earth could I cook that's 
a) British 
b) within my limited repertoire 
c) portable to school without needing warming 
but mostly b)
Thanks to Twitter suggestions, Yorkshire puds won out considering they have, like, 3 ingredients and are pretty much idiot proof, or should I say Cara proof.

So I told Kia's teacher at Parent's Conference that I will bring in a dish of these yummies, oh and I'll throw in some Marmite sandwiches for good measure, because then that's two dishes, two separate 'British' things, all be them far, far from gourmet, and even though I was screaming to take in a Haggis with a side dish of Black Pudding. Yumm-a-licious!

Problem is, I'm ashamed to admit, even after spending 5 years of my life in Yorkshire (admittedly in a Stella haze) I've never made Yorkshires before, Aunt Bessie did that for me, because they are perfect every time. 
We scoot to today and I deliver the delights of the creme-de-la-creme of British cuisine, the Yorkshires came out mighty fine (if I do say so myself, and I do) complete with little notecards explaining what they were made from and what on earth Marmite was, and Kia informs me after school that only her and her teacher tried the Yorkshires and noone cared for the Marmite Sandwiches.
Next time I'm keeping my slackermum pants on.

Wednesday, 10 March 2010

Friends in all the right places

Those of us that are Twitter, Facebook, and Blog happy people probably started off on the odd forum or two. That's certainly where I started as once upon a time I found myself 21, six weeks pregnant and in need of people in the same situation, I stumbled across a pregnancy forum, nine years later I still talk to the ladies I first found there.

Some of us met in person, some of us meet regularly, some of us fell out, some of us don't get on, some of us disappeared, some of us returned, some of us experienced loss, illness, heartache, and some of us are going through bad, bad times. We were kicked off our original board because we weren't mothers of babies anymore so we made our own little chatting and sharing haven, we've been there for each other for the past 9 years and I truly hope that will continue.

The internet and my friends that live on it have been a lifeline for me since moving here. It's been a steady constant in my changing world. People I talk to on Twitter, Facebook and my forum friends didn't go anywhere. They stayed right where I needed them and I for them. Those people I don't, didn't or never saw on a face to face basis were still right there day and night. This contact with people, whether it be from my old magnolia painted, beige carpeted living room in the UK is no different from this, also magnolia painted, but tiled living room in the US.

Of course my 'real life' friends didn't go anywhere either, it was me that did, but most of those friends were never into the social media scene, these two worlds I had were and still are totally separate so communication with them is old school; phone and email. I dearly, dearly miss my friends I did see on a regular face to face basis, I miss going for coffees, all round mine for wine, the school run and the long chats in the playground, hugs and smiles like nothing else and I am counting down the days until I go see them for a weekend in June.

Now one of my bestest friends whom I met online all those years ago is very soon about to undertake what I just did, although unfortunately she will only be a little bit closer to me, given that she is off to California and I'm here in New Jersey, the flight time between isn't much shorter than to get back to London! But I am planning a trip there as soon as she gives me the nod that she's settled and I can come! I hope that she feels this steady constant too and that her new found twittering and, I hope, blogging helps her and I wish her, her husband and three beautiful children all the luck in the world on their new journey.

Friday, 5 March 2010

I'm no Fox

I'm currently working on a jumper for Jai from a book I called Easy Kids Knits and so far it's living up to to the book's name. We'll see though because it has independent sleeves which will involve sewing. I reserve the right to change my mind about it's easiness. Also I have a horrible feeling I didn't buy enough yarn. Jai is a skinny runt, but he's got a long body so the yardage may even itself out or I'll have to buy another skein from and lets face it, you can't just buy one and that'll mean blowing my 'Cara's Entertainment fund' for this month after berating MrD for going over his by $3 in Feb which, I'm sure you'll agree, is just scandalous, I mean $3 is almost a gallon of milk. Selfishness.

I also finished my poncho, come cowl, come thing I put over my head and round my neck. It was too big as a poncho itself (the word poncho just screams Ugly Betty at me) so I folded it around itself and got this.

I asked my son (currently home ill from school and so needing to be put to good use) to take a full shot and this happened:

I knew I should have taken one yesterday when I looked like this:

Monday, 1 March 2010

Pretty Awesome

You know the one thing that moving to America has allowed me to do?
Use the word 'Awesome'
And that in itself is pretty awesome. It's not a word that gets used back home unless you're a gnarly skateboarder dude or you say it sarcastically in a really bad fake US accent. Now I can say it all the time and even my 3 year old has adopted it as word of the week.

We Brits take the piss, it's what we do and by 'take the piss' I mean 'take the mick', 'take the mickey', 'take the Michael' 'rip the piss out of'...
You see this is where two countries that speak the same language don't speak the same language. Some people just haven't got a fecking clue what I am saying! And bejesus does it work both ways!

For example. The other day I'm at this lady's house (my son playing with her son) and I say come on Jai we need to go home for tea. She then politely asks if I take milk in it. Well yes I do in tea, but I'm mean tea, you know as in tea, tea. Penny drops, I mean dinner!
Now I know this is a regional thing in the UK and we use the word dinner and tea interchangeably but to me dinner is posher and I would only really say it if it was just me and MrD going to a restaurant.
Now I use it just to see the confused faces. I'm a meanie.

Equally there are many words that I am coming across now that I have to think about, like pocketbook means wallet, right? Here I live in a Town House that only has two levels, it would have three in the UK (excluding the attic or basement) and there I lived in a semi-detached house, that would be a Duplex here, god knows what a Condo is! I thought I was getting some really fancy self-cleaning/bird poo repellant glass when I read 'window treatments' in the house brochure, to say I was underwhelmed by the resulting papery pleated blinds is an understatement. I also got very confused when the back of the food packet told me to broil, that will be to grill then.

Because there is too so much US tele (see, we say tele/telly, it would seem it's purely TV here) on the tele in the UK that us Brits kinda know that when you say garbage/trash can you mean rubbish/dust bin. When you say yard you mean garden, faucet/tap, diaper/nappy, pacifier/dummy, fall/autumn, ass/arse, and when a guy mentions his fanny, well we know that that doesn't mean he is transgender, but we do have to pick ourselves off the floor after the laughter. We also get that when you say Britain you usually mean England (not the same thing Mrs 2nd grade teacher of my daughter)

I'm not going to go into pronounciation, because well, I'm just not going there (but 'erbs!!, really 'erbs?, like nails down a blackboard *shudder*)

Today the postman mailman delivered my parcel package of wool yarn from the shop store, I said cheers thank you, I won't be buying anymore for a fortnight two weeks unless the jumper sweater I'm knitting goes pearshaped wrong.

Totally awesome.


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