101 things IN

and other things thrown in between

101 Things in 1001 Days: October 2006

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

101 in 1001 - An Update

I haven’t forgotten my list. In fact there are a few more things I can cross off it:

Body and Health

*Join a Pilates class – Done!

Yes, I have! And boy, it’s a lot more difficult than I imagined it would be. I thought it was just a lot of gentle stretching exercises, which it is, but you stretch to the max! I was all aches and pains when the class was over. Makes me realise just how unfit I am.

Family – Daughter

Enrol her in Ballet Classes – Done!

And I am so glad I did. She absolutely loves it and she looks adorable in her little pink leotards and silky pick tutu. I stand by the studio doors with a silly smile slapped on my face watching her for the duration of the lesson. Hey, but so are all the other mums!

Family – Husband

Have another baby – Done! (well almost...)

I am now 7 weeks pregnant. Need I say more? But if you really want me to,
go here.

*Note to self: Must remember to discuss the safety of Pilates during pregnancy with the instructor.

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National Blog Posting Month

So, I have signed up for NaBloPoMo with starts next month.

‘NaBloPoMo is an alternative to November's NaNoWriMo, National Novel Writing Month, the program wherein you crank out a novel in thirty days.’

I am really looking forward to it as I enjoyed the last (self imposed) challenge of writing 100 words a day for 30 days.

To read all about it go here and sign up!

Monday, October 23, 2006

Unconscious Mutterings : Week 194

Stuff :: useless
Block :: ice
Ingredient :: main
Flagrant :: lie
Dandruff :: head and shoulders
Betty :: Midler
Tide :: sea
Judges :: robes
Take it easy :: okay?
Chef :: TV


Friday, October 20, 2006


It was good, he said, for them to get together
He was the high school heartthrob
She was the high school beauty
Together they would make a great team

It was good, he said, to cut class once in a while
The world was passing them by
While they sat stuck in a classroom
At their age it was all about freedom not books

It was good, he said, for them to have sex
They would make music together
They would fit perfectly
After all everyone was doing it

It was good, he said, to get rid of it
At seventeen who wants to be lumbered with a baby
Their lives stretched ahead of them
Why ruin it because of one mistake

It was good, he said, to go to the party
Never mind if her parents didn’t consent
Sneak out when everyone is fast asleep
And meet me at the corner by the willow tree

It was good, he said, to be bad once in a while
To borrow dads car with out permission
Without a licence
That’s what life is about, taking risks, living on the edge

It was good, he said, to have a little drink
To take a little pill
To get a little high
To get a little wild

It was all good, he said, he wasn’t drunk
Get in the car, turn the music up
Wind the windows down
Feel the speed, the wind in your hair

They were found an hour later
Wrapped around a tree
A violent end to two young lives
And that wasn’t so good after all.

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Thursday, October 19, 2006

Plus One More

I don’t think I can hold this news in any longer or else I will burst!

I am Pregnant with my second child!!!!!!!!!

It been a long two year journey to get here but get here we did in the end. Now where do I start?

When my daughter was a year and a half I finally made the conscious decision that I was ready to have another baby – before that I just wasn’t ready. I had found it difficult to cope being a first time mom and in hindsight I think I suffered a bit from post natal depression.

After about a year of trying nothing had happened. I began to wonder if anything was the matter – after all I got pregnant the first time without even thinking about it. Could it be the fact that I went on the Pill after I’d had my first child? Am I not relaxed enough (why does everyone tell you to ‘relax’ when you are trying for a baby?)? Have I put on weight? Am I too old? All sorts of thoughts were swirling around my head. Then in November of last year, bingo, I got pregnant but sadly I miscarried a few weeks later. However this helped get the ball rolling.

The next 10 months were filled with endless medical tests being carried out on me and my husband. Urine tests, sperm tests, blood tests, external scans, internal scans, internal examinations, and a hysterosalpingogram (HSG). On my medical notes, I was put in the category of Secondary Infertility. By this time any passion between the sheets had become a mechanical chore. There is something about trying for a baby for a long time and nothing happening that acts as a real passion killer. You get to a stage where you ask yourself what the point is.

But I think what I hated the most was

  1. Constantly being asked by people, ‘So when is number two coming?’ and

  2. Having the fact pointed out to me that I already had a beautiful little girl so I should be grateful.

Both situations elicited the same response from me, Piss Off! But I never voiced it of course; I just smiled through very tight lips and changed the subject.

(Listen, if you have a friend or sister who is trying for a child, please, please do not keep asking when number two is coming, or reminding them of what they already have.)

At the end of all these tests, the results showed that both my husband and I were okay. There was a slight possibility that I may have ovarian cysts but this turned out to be a false alarm (thank goodness).

I had my final visit with my Consultant Gynaecologist in September and I was prescribed a four month supply of the drug Clomid. All we now had to do was wait for my next period, take one Clomid tablet a day for five days and have lots of sex for the next twelve. Sounds fun, huh?

Within me, I balked at the idea of having to take a drug to get pregnant – I wanted to get pregnant naturally. But I had no choices left open to me. Prayers had long since ended and resignation had slowly but surely set in.

So I clutched my prescription for my Clomid and headed for the nearest pharmacy with the words of my consultant ringing in my ears:

‘Just chill out (yes she said that *smile*), relax (oh no) and the next time I see you, I want to see you with a baby.’ But (there is always a but) she added, ‘If after four months you are still not pregnant, we will have to refer you to the infertility clinic.’

Cheery news. What baffled me all the way through the numerous tests was how a perfectly normal fertile woman like myself, could suddenly become infertile.

I brought home the little white cardboard box with the word CLOMID printed on it in bold blue letters and sat it on my shelf and waited for my next period to arrive. And I waited, and waited and waited.

10 days late I dared to let this thought creep into my head ‘Could I be pregnant?’ It was a quiet thought but it carried so much hope. I approached my stash of pregnancy test strips (I had ordered hundreds of them during the period I was undergoing all those tests) and pulled out one of the white foil packets. Oh, how many times had I done this and gotten a negative result which left me devastated every time?

I tore open the foil packet, took a wee sample, and stuck the test strip into it and squeezed my eyes shut; please, please, please, please, please. Five seconds later, I pulled out the strip. I watched the wee soak its way up the strip past the control line and past the test line. Yes, there was the control line – a bright red – but wait, there was a SECOND LINE – the test line! POSITIVE!! I couldn’t believe it and I didn’t.

I so didn’t believe it that over the next four days I carried out four more pregnancy tests which all gave me the same results. At last, I could believe it. Then and only then did I break the news to my husband. We had done it and without Clomid!

Needless to say, we are both very happy and I wanted to share some of that happiness with you.

And for those of you who caught on to my unusual Haiku of simple pleasures (now you know why it was a simple pleasure for me) and congratulated me, thank you very much.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

One Day in History

This morning listening to BBC Radio 4, I caught the tail end of what I thought would be a very interesting project to participate in, being discussed. It’s a project called One Day in History and it…’ is a one off opportunity for you to join in a mass blog for the national record. We want as many people as possible to record a 'blog' diary which will be stored by the British Library as a historical record of our national life…’

This mass blog will only be open for today October 17, 2006.

The idea held immediate appeal for me so I decided to be a part of it and record my own One Day in History and here is the entry I submitted.

At 6 a.m I was rudely awoken by a mechanical voice telling me to ‘Stand clear, vehicle reversing’. Yes, it is Tuesday morning and the bin men from the local council were doing the weekly rubbish collection. I sleepily looked out of the window and I was slightly ashamed to notice that mine was the only house not proudly displaying the council’s big green plastic recycle box full of empty milk bottles and food tins. Now all my neighbors will know that I just chuck all my bottles and tins out with my ordinary rubbish. I make a mental note and resolve to do the right thing next week and put all recyclable stuff in their proper box.

Although still pitch dark, my 3 ½ year old daughter wakes up so that spells the end of a possible lie-in for me (it’s my day off work) so I bundle both of us up in our dressing gowns and house shoes and make our way downstairs. I give her her morning cup of milk and settle her down in front of the TV to watch the Disney Channel (yes, I am one of those twenty-first century mums who thinks the TV makes a really good substitute for a babysitter. And I make no apologies for it) while I go down to my home office to check my emails, my blogs (have any new comments been left?) and have a quick browse through some of my favorite blogs to see if their owners have updated them.

10:30 a.m sees us at the local primary school round the corner from where I live. They are having an Open Day and my husband and I are there to have a look around as next September our daughter will be starting school and this school may be one of our choices. A brief chat with the head teacher and a 45 minute tour round the school and it’s time to leave. I am slightly disappointed by what I see (I had heard so much about this school so my expectations were rather high) and start discussing the possibility of private schooling for our daughter with my husband. We decide to call up some private schools and book appointments to visit them next week.

Between 12 noon and 2 p.m I make lunch for my daughter, Dyson (vacuum) the house thoroughly, mop the floors, send my daughter up for her afternoon nap and finally fall exhausted in front of the TV where I proceed to watch the Crime Investigation channel. The next time I look at the clock I see that it’s 3:30 pm – I had fallen asleep in front of the TV! We’ve been invited round to a friend for a late lunch so I decide to start getting ready. Daughter wakes up shortly and I get her dressed as well.

4:30 pm and we are at our friends house enjoying an Eastern Nigerian delicacy and talking about nothing in particular. All in all it’s a warm and enjoyable evening and even the kids are getting along wonderfully. Two and a half hours later we say our good-byes and make our way back home.

For the next hour after I get home, I give my daughter a bath, I have my own shower and I sit down to finish this write up of ‘My One Day in History’.  

Monday, October 16, 2006


There are times when I marvel at just how clueless my husband sometimes is.

He woke me from my afternoon nap to tell me he was taking our daughter out to the Botanical Gardens for a couple of hours. I grunted an acknowledgement and was about to roll over to continue my journey into la-la land when a thought struck me. My eyes flew open and I asked;

‘What does N have on?’

‘Some clothes’.

‘I know that. Which ones?’ I retort rather forcefully.

‘Her brown trousers and a green T-shirt’

I did a mental scan of her clothes collection and couldn’t think of a pair of brown trousers she had that were worth going out in. Thankfully, my daughter decided to come upstairs to give me a good-bye kiss and I am so glad she did. I couldn’t believe my eyes when she walked into my bedroom.

My DH had dressed her in a pair of trousers two sizes too small, riddled with juice and playground bark stains, a green T-shirt which was riding half way up her belly and her rainbow coloured cardigan which for the life of me I couldn’t figure out how it fit in with the rest of the outfit. She looked awful.

‘Where you really planning to take her out looking like that?!’ I asked incredulously.

You see, what baffles me is that for 3 ½ yrs he has watched me dress our daughter up day in day out in clothes that I’d like to think are mostly presentable and sometimes even trendy so why, oh why, hasn’t he picked up a few things along the way? Then I realised that he doesn’t have a clue about her clothes. He probably thinks that the chest of drawers standing in the corner of her room houses my flower bulbs. It is amazing to me that he would rather take her out looking like she has been dragged through a hedge backwards than spend five extra minutes looking for clothes in her drawers that fit and match!

In the end, I had to get out of bed, rip off the offending rags that she had on and put her into more presentable clothes. And what did DH have to say?

‘Oh, that looks much better.’


Simple Pleasures

Four pregnancy tests
All show me double blue lines
Success, baby's here!

Sunflowers blooming
On a dull October day
Puddles of sunshine

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Saturday, October 14, 2006

If I could stop time...

If I could stop time, I would have stopped it in my early twenties. This was the age at which I was foot loose and fancy free and the word ‘Responsibility’ didn’t feature in my dictionary. But above all else, this was the age at which I could put anything through my lips and not live in mortal fear of seeing the consequences of my unhealthy choices reflected back at me in the mirror the next day.

Let’s just say my body has changed since then. For one thing it has gradually become very unforgiving when I make bad lifestyle choices (too much butter and I have spots the next day, too little sleep and I can’t function past 12 noon) and for another, its metabolic rate is just not what it used to be. Now the thing is, my head grasps this little fact but my mind refuses to acknowledge it which leaves me in a very precarious position as most of the time I tend to listen to my mind.

You see, my mind still believes that a slice of cheese cake or a hot chocolate with marshmallows and whipped cream will soon work its way out of my system. And when my head tries to butt in, my mind tells me Nah! Don’t worry; go ahead you’ll be fine. And I actually listen to it!

My body has rebelled you see. The only place the consumption of such treats (alas, at this stage of my life they have become treats, in my twenties they were called Staple Diet) work their way to is my hips, bum and thighs. I used to be a svelte size 8 (US 4) but now I’m a … well, lets just say I have moved a few notches up into double figures and whenever my husband dares to comment on my now curvy figure I quickly remind him that this body has carried a baby for nine months, gone through 10 hours of labour and has breast fed for 3 months so I can be excused if it’s looking a little worse for wear.

But the good news it that although I do miss my slimmer days sometimes, I don’t obsess about it. I love what I’ve got and I’m learning to live with it. So there!!

And the super power I would grab out of the bag? WILL POWER.


Wednesday, October 11, 2006


Narrow winding lanes
Look left, look right, left again
A hedgehog crossing

Driving past green fields
Windows down breathing fresh air
Lovely smell of dung

For One Deep Breath

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Sunday, October 08, 2006

An Assignment: The Coat

It was her coat that first grabbed my attention. It was so different – unique – from the sea of sameness surrounding me that I couldn’t help but be drawn to it. There was nothing remarkable about the style of the coat – a basic cut – but it was the fabric, the tailoring and its fit that made it stand out.

It was a cream coat with thin black horizontal stripes running through the length of it, with a round collar, chunky black buttons down its front, two side pockets and a belted waist. Intrigued by this item of clothing, I quickened my pace and caught up with the wearer by the pedestrian traffic lights which thankfully had just turned red.

As we stood waiting for the lights to turn green, I turned my attention to the lady standing beside me wearing this coat that had caught me by surprise. She was a woman in, perhaps, her late forties early fifties and I hazard a guess that she probably did not have children. I don’t know why I concluded this but there was something about her that gave me the impression that she didn’t have children. I also felt that she was single – either widowed or divorced. Maybe it was her demeanour that gave off these impressions.

She had steely grey hair – a lovely shade of silver with black streaks in it – which was very well cut. Her make up was discreet. She was not a beautiful woman but she made the most of her features – in a way that made her arresting. It was obvious that she took good care of herself.

The buttons of her coat stopped midway down her thighs leaving a few inches to the knee open which flapped back in the breeze. I could just make out a cream coloured knee length full skirt underneath. She had obeyed the fashion rule that ones coat should always be the same length as the dress or skirt underneath. She had on cream coloured flat pumps. Funnily enough, I didn’t notice if she had been carrying a handbag or not.

As I stood by her for those brief minutes waiting to cross the road, her cool elegance and self assurance make me feel ungainly and clumsy. I felt my back straighten involuntarily, I self consciously tucked that stray hair blowing in the wind behind my ear. I wished I had taken the time to put on some lipstick. My brown leather driving shoes suddenly seemed scruffy. I had the mad urge to scream – Notice me! Notice me!

The lights changed and I was surprised to see that we were headed to the same shop – House of Fraser – and she was right behind me. I held the door open for her, she said thank you, and as suddenly as she had appeared by those traffic lights she was gone.

I was really caught off guard by her presence because in a world were most women tend to look the same it was refreshing to see someone following her own style and sticking two fingers up at the ‘what’s in and what’s not’ experts. She reminded me so much of the Parisian women. And I thought to myself, that’s the sort of woman I would want to be. Not her life per se because I no nothing of the life she may be leading, but her aura - Self assured, elegant and following her own rules. It’s the effect she had on me that I would most like to possess – the ability to unnerve not in a bad way, but rather in a way where people – strangers – sit up and notice without me even trying.

I am looking for a cream coat with black horizontal stripes.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Letting Go

Last night, I woke up suddenly in the middle of the night and I lay awake for many hours tossing and turning. My head was filled with thoughts of my childhood best friend. She got married in the last couple of weeks and I got to see photos of the wedding yesterday. The ceremony was a mix of Buddhist and western traditions. She looked radiant.

Looking through the photos brought home to me just what different paths our lives have taken and I physically hurt at the knowledge of how far away the friendship we once shared with each other now is. Almost like it never existed. How could two people who once shared so much in common have grown so far apart – so different – from one another? It this what time and distance does to a friendship? I sometimes wonder if I dreamt it all up but then I see the photographs of the two of us together at 4, 5, 6 ….12 years old and I am reassured that it wasn’t all a dream.

I know our friendship is gone now replaced by, well, I am not quite sure what. Too many miles separate us for anything more than the snippets of our lives that we share on the rare occasions that we see, to develop. There is nothing that binds us together anymore. Not our beliefs, not our lifestyle choices, not mutual friends. Nothing. Only Memories.

I miss her.


Wheat Flour, Water, Yeast, Salt, Vinegar, Soya Flour, Vegetable Fat, Emulsifier (Mono and Diacetyltartaric Acid Esters of Mono and Diglycerides of Fatty Acids), Fermented Wheat Flour, Flour Treatment Agent (Ascorbic Acid).

All this in a simple loaf of store bought bread. It’s time to unearth my bread maker and start baking my own bread again. I least I know what goes into that.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

100 Words - Last Post

Just over a month and 37 posts later, it’s time to move on. It’s been challenging and frustrating because sometimes 100 words are just not enough! I am glad I did it and proud that I was disciplined enough to see it through. I am searching for another project to turn to. I am toying with the idea of participating in the 40X365 project – but I am unsure about it. It is a deeply personal project and the last thing I would want to do is hurt anyone. So until I make up my mind I shall blog at random.

(100 Words)


Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Ancient Wisdom

I have this unexplainable urge to open up my Bible and read it. I haven’t had this urge in a long, long time and feeling this way makes me realise just how much I have missed what used to be a daily practice for me. The bible fascinates me - more so finding ways to apply its lessons to my daily life and relationships with people. Largely, my bible sits on my bedside table gathering dust. Unread, untouched and not given much thought except to use it as a paper weight for all the glossy magazines I favour reading instead.

(100 Words)


Memories of Paris


Sunday, October 01, 2006

Unconscious Mutterings : Week 191

Taxes :: sky high
Hooray :: Hip hip
Justification :: moral
Shocking :: pink
Bureaucracy :: red tape
Porn :: star
Silly :: billy
DJ :: Jazzy Jeff
Swing :: door
Anti- :: war