28 Sep 2011

Hestia's....new family member

L-R - Kevin, The Bears
(just in case you couldn't work out who was who)
Last year, a whole load of fund-raising bikers from Help For Heroes came to the island and the local bikers put on a wee night for them in the Shinty Club (think: Stringfellows with splinters and the unforgettable tang of sports kits in the air).

Anyway, during the course of the evening a small teddy-bear came up for raffle.  Everyone was piddling around bidding a fiver at a time.....and Tartarus, somewhat the worse for wear and feeling expansive, bid quite a lot and won the bear.

Some days later (when the fug of the evening had cleared and he was panicking about the emptiness of his wallet) he remembered about the bear, but could find no sign of it.  'Ah, said the bikers, the bear doesn't come home with you - he goes around the world. With the Army.'

24 Sep 2011

Hestia's Denim Detox

I could never wear those frilly knickers with
conviction,  #i might END UP with a conviction
if I wore them in Scotland though.
So, when we were up in Glasgow a couple of weeks ago, I was idly lying on the sofa, perusing Red magazine and my gaze alighted on a feature where a very glam blonde opted to forgo her usual diet of denim for a week. 'My God,' thought I, working my way through a Kitkat,' I'd DIE if I had to give up my jeans for a whole week.'




Right then and there, of course, I resolved to do 7 days without a shred of denim.

16 Sep 2011

Hestia...attempts a shoe blog

I think I love you....
So Greece may default on its debt, leading to widespread turmoil in the fiscal markets of the Eurozone.  One in four of the London rioters had 10 previous run-ins with the law prior to the riots.  The Japanese nuclear plant is still in crisis....but LOOK!!!!! New SHOES!!!!!!!

12 Sep 2011

Hestia.....remembers September 11th

Everyone over the age of puberty will remember where they were 10 years ago yesterday.

Watching the horror unfold on the TV like an unbelievably horrible Hollywood film, we really did expect Bruce Willis to appear and make Everything Alright again.  We WILLED him to appear.  But real life is not like the movies and our world tilted on its axis that day and never really tilted back.

What did I do?  I tuned in to QVC.  For hours.

I wasn't wanting to buy anything.  I just wanted to see people behaving normally.  The ashen-faced presenters kept doing what they were paid to do - selling digital cameras and lap tops and I found solace amongst the scrolling phone numbers and 'limited stock' announcements.  It gave me an anchor into the normalcy of the day before, the 10th of September, when everything was ok.  When the worst of my problems was how I was going to lose all this post-baby weight.

From time to time, Tartarus flicked on the news and the horror piled in on us again - endless, endless replays of the planes hitting the buildings, people jumping holding hands, dust-covered zombies staggering through the streets.

We went to bed that night holding hands and with our baby son between us.  With no idea what the following days might bring; apocalyptic thoughts that we dared not voice out loud haunted us.

And yet here we are, ten years later, just bumbling along like we were on the 10th of September, yet entirely different.  I still watch QVC and am grateful for what they did for me that day.  Hell, I even buy stuff!

I never really lost the post-baby fat though.

There was SOME good came out of that day: We got to see the very best that people can be in the very worst of circumstances. And if we can choose to focus on that instead of the utter devastation that was visited on the US that day, we can make ourselves better people - and that's the best memorial we can build for those that died.

What were you doing, 10 years ago yesterday?










9 Sep 2011

Hestia does Glasgow, in pictures

So - you came with me.  But I couldn't show you where we were cos I forgot to take the lead for the camera.  Anyway, let's rectify that right now.  Here is our 5 day break in Glasgow, in pix.

Wur accommodation - before it got untidy

It had a window seat - upon which I fondly imagined myself reading and being artistically inspired.  I wasn't.


There was a kitchen, complete with complimentary bottle of wine.  Result.


A lovely contemporary bathroom - that is a DOUBLE sink


And it had a SPA bath - which I also fondly pictured myself being all arty and relaxing with a glass of wine.  I didn't.  I did relax in it with a mug of tea.  Which is not the same thing.


Next day - rain of biblical splendour and I am dragged like a truculent teenager to The Transport Museum - now in its new home.  It was pretty good.  But a Transport Museum is not the place for someone who really wants to be sequestered in front of a black and white movie with a hot chocolate.

Tartarus, as you can see, was like a pig in the proverbial.  
Standing in front of a case of ships, he was happy.


fire engines, bicycles and lots of other assorted shit to do with motors


The glass hearse, complete with stuffed horses.  I'm having me one of THESE when the time comes.  You can bugger your ecological wicker baskets - give me horses with plumes and a glass carriage.


Stuffed horses


In the evening we went out with my lovely friends B and C.  We went to Bobar so that we could watch Scotland v Lithuania.  However, several bottles of gorgeous red put paid to any interest we had in the game.  They came back to ours for a nightcap (ie another bottle of wine).  This is them with their jackets still on and checking their mobile phones for Important Messages.


The next day there was a bit of a break in the weather and we went to Kelvingrove Art Gallery. This is a photo of my old Alma Mater - Glasgow University.  See that tower? I've been up that tower.


My other spiritual home, Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum


I sat for ages in The Glasgow Boys room and then headed out into the open area with many sculpted busts.  This is my favourite - a harpy, whose name escapes me.  
Not the sort of woman you would go home to with a burst pay packet, eh?


Then today it was back home.  Is Nibbles still in his cage.  Check.  Yep, the half brick is still in place.  No escapee hamster this time.

And then, it was 2pm and time to go to the school to uplift our filthy, dirty little children after 5 joyous days at Castle Toward


And here he is.  All pants worn.  All socks worn.  Soap untroubled by water though.

Truthfully? We were all delighted to see each other for nearly a full 60 minutes.

I hope that you have had a marvellous 5 days while you were all stuck in my pocket.  Incidentally, choosing a thin linen jacket to wear for the full 5 days to Glasgow was foolhardy in the extreme as the whip-end of Hurricane Irene blustered her way through Scotland. I was so wet and miserable, I had to be led AWAY from the duffle coat section in Debenhams, weeping.

As Billy Connolly says, there's no such thing as bad weather, just the wrong clothes.

Whatcha been up to this week? Do share!









5 Sep 2011

Hestia and Sonshine...separated by 5 days of fun

And so it came to pass that Tartarus and Hestia did drive their only begotten son up to school with his suitcase all packed ready to go to Castle Toward outdoor centre for FIVE whole days.

Five whole days during which his pile of clean pants and socks will remain undisturbed.  As will his bar of soap and facecloth, I'd imagine.  I've already been warned that their clothes come back so filthy that they are simply consigned to the bin and under no circumstances should you try to put them through the washing machine without hosing them down on the lawn first.

This is the longest that Sonshine and I have been apart and, while we are both looking forward to this next step on the journey towards being a Teenager, I can't help but feel a little sad.

We posed for a photo (taken by Tartarus)

You can feel Sonshine's shame lol!


And now I am off once again to Glasgow for some retail therapy and large glasses of wine with friends.

But am taking my laptop, so you're all coming with me.

3 Sep 2011

Hestia.... spectacular goddess fail


So, I've been working on a 90 day plan with a couple of friends.  How it works is this: You decide what you want to have achieved in a year's time and then set yourself 90 day path-markers to make sure that you're on track and what not.

I've been doing it for a month and I think I'm making pretty good headway - updating my goals, keeping an eye on what I'm running off-track with....and I'm feeling pretty pleased with myself.

Until today.

2 Sep 2011

Hestia ...and The Zeus 1.0

So, I'm just relaxing with my friends after dinner, small post-prandial glass in my hand (non-alcoholic) and we're being all convivial and I'm thinking 'It's not a bad life,' when the kitchen door bursts open and Sonshine stands in the doorway looking fairly mutinous.

Well, as mutinous as you can with chocolate ice-cream smears on your nose and cheeks.

'What time is it, mum?' he scowled.

'It's nearly half past eight.  We'll be heading back down the road soon - because you've got to cycle because you insisted on coming here on your bike.'

'HALF EIGHT???? What about my space-ship?'

I regarded the flailing arms and thought how much he reminded me of his father sometimes.

'Space ship?'

'YES.  THE ONE THAT I HAVE TO MAKE. FOR SCHOOL. TOMORROW!'

This was news to me.

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