Sunday, 28 March 2010

Don't you just love British Summer Time?

This morning my brother and his wife forgot to add the hour on. Major problem as they had invited us for lunch at 1.00pm. My SIL went into a complete panic. I told her not to worry and offered to help. We eventually sat down to a wonderful lunch at 3.00pm.

This would never happen to me.

Not because I am so perfect I would never forget.

No, it's because of this:

Things I have said to my MIL today
(with apologies to Millennium Housewife for pinching her idea)

  • hello
  • no, sorry, Andy's not in
  • he's gone to the tip
  • I'm not sure when he'll be back, why?
  • yes, he will come and change your clocks
  • no, he's not forgotten
  • I know you asked him last week
  • yes, and you have phoned twice since then to remind him
  • he said he'll do it, so he will, he won't forget
  • no, I don't know what time he'll call
  • well, it doesn't matter if you are out when he calls, he has a key
  • yes, he knows the alarm code
  • yes, he knows which clocks to change
  • yes, he knows to do the central heating clock
  • no, I don't know what time he's coming to do them
  • well, as I said, he has a key, so you don't need to rush back from church
  • well, I don't know if he will come while you're at church, but as I said, he has a key
  • yes, I'll tell him you called when he gets home
  • no, I don't know what time he'll be home
  • well, as I said, he has a key
  • no, he'll not forget
  • yes, I'll remind him
We have this conversation twice a year - British Summer Time and Greenwich Mean Time!

Saturday, 27 March 2010

Easter Cupcakes

Today we have been mostly making chocolate brownie cakes with chocolate buttercream nests.

Just enjoy!

Notice the little hand coming in to swipe one?

(especially for Bare Naked Mummy):

Chocolate Brownie Cakes:
50z plain chocolate
4 oz butter
6 oz caster sugar
2 eggs
6 oz SR flour

Melt chocolate and butter in a bowl above a pan of simmering water.
Remove from heat and allow to cool a little.
Add sugar and eggs and beat well.
Add flour and beat well.
Spoon into 12 - 14 muffin cases and bake at 150 degrees C for approx 20 mins.
Cool on wire rack.

Chocolate Buttercream:
4oz softened butter
8oz icing sugar
2 tbsp cocoa powder
2 - 3 tsps hot water

Beat all ingredients together with the paddle whisk of a mixer for at least 5 mins until fluffy.

To Decorate:
One quantity of chocolate buttercream
One Cadbury flake
Mini eggs

Pipe swirls of buttercream onto cooled cakes.
Sprinkle with crumbled flake.
Add 3 mini eggs.

Warning - extremely calorific!

(I'm only having one, the rest are going to work as Easter treats for my Department)

Thursday, 25 March 2010

Why I Love Teaching - Part 5

It's been a tiring and trying week at the chalkface:

"Mrs WM, you know global warming?"


"Well, if the top ice cap is melting, is the bottom one getting bigger?"

"Not that I know of, why?"

"Well, doesn't all the water fall down to the bottom?"

"I think you'll find that gravity acts towards the centre of the earth, James, otherwise everyone in the southern hemisphere would fall off"

And this is from an A level mechanics class!

Monday, 22 March 2010

Katie, why can't you wear a Hannah Montana T-shirt and leggings?

This is what daughter needs to look like by Friday:

Apparently this is Katie Morag.

A very annoying little scottish girl who doesn't wear anything you can find in Tesco or Matalan!

Perhaps if we lived in Tobermory I could find a green and yellow kilt and an arran sweater.

Unfortunately, we live in Manchester.

Home of leggings and t-shirts.

After many tears and trips to various shops this is what we have come up with:

  • A blue pleated school skirt (nearest we could find to a kilt)
  • An old yellow sundress cut into squares (to sew onto skirt to give impression of tartan)
  • A white t-shirt
  • Some blue embroidery thread (to do the zig zags around the neck)
  • Daughter's winter boots

I have to make a Katie Morag costume out of that by Friday, as well as doing my full-time job and a choir rehearsal.

So far this year we've done Winnie the Witch, a star and Big Chris.

I can't take any more "Please provide your child with a grasshopper/mermaid/pole dancer outfit by Tuesday"

Why did no one ever tell me about the costumes?!!

Friday, 19 March 2010

Easter Bonnet Blues?

It's that time again. We got the letter from school. Daughter needs an Easter Bonnet for the annual Easter Bonnet Parade. That's on top of last week's World Book Day costume and next week's Katie Morag Day costume (who is Katie Morag, anyway?)

So what did this Working Mum do?

If you were reading last year you'll know that I got ahead of the game on this one.

Yes, I've done it again!

I saved the old Easter Bonnet in a safe place; just need to give it a quick dust and Bob's your Uncle!

I reckon it'll last another year as well, then no more Easter Bonnet Parades!

Working Mum gets an "A" for ingenuity!

Wednesday, 17 March 2010

Spring - a time of rebirth

I've been thinking about changing my blog template for a while now. I'm a bit fed up of the intense pink. Need a change. I fancy something light. I'd quite like one of those fancy dancy ones, but I can't be bothered with the time it would take to set it up. I'll just choose another blogger template.

Then I thought, but people won't recognise it!

Then I thought, but I want something light and airy.

Then I thought, the pink's okay, it's like my car; old fashioned, but nearly a classic.

Then I read this!

Definitely time for a change.

I decided to go for it.

I promptly changed to a nice, light template.

The same one I use for my other blog.

I like it.

For now.

Update: I've just discovered how to change the fonts and colours in your template (I never knew you could, I could have toned down the intense pink!). So I must warn you, there could be some messing about for a while until I find what I want.

Another update: I'm now trying out a paler pink. I'm definitely a pink girl at heart!

Sunday, 14 March 2010

Mithering Sunday!

No, not a spelling error.

I think the trouble with Mother's Day is that my expectations are too high.

You'd think I'd have learned by now, wouldn't you?

Take my first Mother's Day. I thought it would be special, my first Mother's Day as a mother:

It started well when the florist arrived with a bouquet. It looked promising that husband had booked a table at a restaurant ........................ and invited his mum. Hmmph.

From then on it has been six years of disappointment.

The lowest point had to be the year I spent Mother's Day decorating the study, whilst husband ran up and down stairs to ask my instructions on how to cook the meal he'd chosen to do! He got more and more annoyed with me as things went wrong until he came upstairs and barked at me:

"It won't fit in the pan!"

"Well, use two b****y pans, then!" I barked back.

That was a nice Mother's Day dinner!

So this year, after he'd invited his mother again, I decided to lock myself in the kitchen and cook my favourite Sunday dinner (roast beef and yorkshire puddings, lemon meringue pie).

However, I had forgotten about Church Parade, and, as husband so helpfully reminded me,

"You do Rainbows, I do swimming"

Can't the demarcation line be crossed for Mother's Day?

Apparently not.

I think he's still smarting about the fact that I wouldn't take her swimming so that he could be on time for a City match.

The trouble with putting your foot down is that it comes back to bite you on the bum!
(You know what I mean)

So I was in the kitchen at 9am to prepare vegetables, make a lemon meringue pie, make the yorkshire pudding batter and put the meat in the oven on the timer. I then took daughter to church and returned an hour later to continue cooking the meal.

Not quite what I had in mind.

But it's all okay because I got a new apron to wear while I was cooking!

No, I'm not being sarcastic, I love it!

For my Mother's Day present, I got this one, but with "Mummy's Cupcakes" embroidered on it. (How to get the present you want? Leave a copy of the web page on husband's briefcase!)

Happy Mother's Day!

Saturday, 13 March 2010

Don't tell your children about your blog!

I've always let daughter see my blog. She likes the pictures, the photos, the little avatars I create.

However, now that she can read, she has started to read my posts. She's started talking more about "Working Mum on the Verge". When funny things happen at home she's even asked me "Will you put that on your blog?"

Now I'm getting a little worried.

What if she tells other people about it?

People who I don't want to know about it.

My MIL, her teacher, other mums from school.

Oh no, my blog fodder could be greatly reduced!

Thursday, 11 March 2010

Chip Shop Chips

A couple of weeks ago at school, daughter took part in a cake sale. I sent her into school with our homemade Rocky Road Chocolate Muffins and 50p to buy a cake.

When I collected her after school I asked what kind of cake she had bought.

"Chip shop chip" she said.

"Chip shop chip?" I asked, "What's one of those?"

"You know", she said, "Like you get in Chip Shop Chip ice cream"

(That's Mint Choc Chip in case you were wondering)

Monday, 8 March 2010

How to Survive Mothering Sunday the Working Mum Way

I think I've said this before: surely Mothers' Day should be reserved for women who are still living with their offspring and thus suffering the daily grind of motherhood?

Apparently not.

Not if you have a MIL who expects to be pampered every Mothers' Day even though her offspring left home 20 years ago!

This year I thought I had it sorted. I had a plan.

I told husband to take his mum and Izzy out for lunch.

The subtext being: "AND LEAVE ME ALONE FOR A DAY!"

Unfortunately, he had already invited his mum here for Sunday lunch.

"I'll cook" he added quickly.

As if this absolves him of all guilt associated with his misdemeanour!

"No", I said, remembering last time. "I'll cook."

"But it's your Mothers' Day, too" he said.

Oh, he's realised!

"But if I cook I can lock myself in the kitchen with The No.1 Ladies' Detective Agency audiobook and potter about doing what I enjoy. If you cook, I have to entertain your mother in the lounge whilst shouting instructions to you in the kitchen"

In reality, I'll be doing this:

Meez 3D avatar avatars games

Day salvaged, I think!

Saturday, 6 March 2010

Two prizes in two days!

Remember English Mum's Valentine Cupcake Competition? Well, I didn't win, but daughter got a prize for being the youngest entrant with her cakes:

The parcel arrived this week and today we went to the Sorting Office to collect it. She got her own pink cupcakes cases, lipgloss in a cupcake shaped holder and a lovely certificate.

She was so chuffed!

Thanks English Mum for making a little girl's day!

I suggested we use her cake cases to make some Marshmallow Cupcakes ( a la Hummingbird Bakery), but she did not want to part with any of hers, so we made some using my cake cases instead:

Go on, you know you can't resist!

(For recipe, click here)

Friday, 5 March 2010

Look what Izzy got!

Year 1 Good Work Award

Well done, my girl!

Wednesday, 3 March 2010

Why I Love Teaching - Part 4

I have a year 11 class that would try the patience of a saint. Since September I have coaxed, cajoled and encouraged them through the syllabus. I have run myself ragged in their lessons making sure they are all working and not slacking off when my back is turned. I have terminated conversations about how much Astra Zeneca will pay for some skin off your bum (yes, really, this is what teenagers talk about!) and I have confiscated some weird and wonderful items. I have a permanent club of three of them in detention every week to do their homework (they just do it in detention now, it's easier than at home). You get the gist.

Today one of them asked me,

"Mrs WM, if you could swap us for another class right now, would you?"

"No, actually, I wouldn't" I said

"Aw, that's so nice" they said.

"I've worked too hard for your GCSEs to stop now!"