Wednesday, 30 May 2007


Once my brother was sitting on the settee and he was looking down and my Mum said "Jack, what are you looking at?" and Jack said "I am looking at a mouse because there is a mouse on the settee."

As we have guinea pigs we have a problem with mice because the mice come to eat the guinea pig food in the shed, and it is not because my Mum does not vacuum under the cushions as has been suggested.

At its worst we had to distract young guests with our conversation as mice ran across the floor so that they wouldn't see and tell their Mums and perhaps wouldn't be allowed to come again.

We used humane traps and let the mice free on the Common in a procession with somebody holding the mouse in the box.

My Back Garden.

We have just bought stuff for my back garden.

We have bought three stepping stones for a pound each with a dragonfly, a ladybird and a butterfly on them and we have bought a butterfly on a stand which hold tea lights and some blue gems. We have been trying the butterfly out at night so you can see the effect. We have also bought an ornamental coloured rock with a fly on a spring on it.

We got the blue gems because we are trying to make a pond but the dogs keep drinking all the water. When Tessa was ill she could only drink water out of the pond because that was all she could find so we think that is why they keep doing it. The gems are a good substitute for water as they shimmer in the light and look like water, in fact they are better than water as they are a really dark blue. The pond consists of a Buddha looking at the pond which is surrounded by grey slate and over which a peony plant hangs.

Some of the things in our garden we got for free like the things hanging off our tree. When you get helium-filled balloons for things like birthdays or Valentine's Day there are little weights hanging on the end of them which you can keep. As a result we have a heart, a star, a teddy and a sun hanging from our tree.

We got the rhubarb plant from Fiona as a present for my Dad for fixing her washing machine.

My Dad put a plank of wood between the garage and the shed to stop the guinea pigs escaping which you can step over and which Scampy hurdles in the morning on cat patrol.

We did have some wind chimes but the neighbour asked us to take them down. Well, he didn't exactly ask us to take them down but he said to my Mum "Don't those windchimes get on your nerves, Bev?" so my Mum later took them down.

We have some CDs hanging on our shed and fence. We got the idea from an art centre in Knaresborough. You drill some holes in the CDs and string them together with paper clips. The CDs sparkle in the sunshine and cast moving circles of light round the garden. My Mum once asked my Dad to take them down as they looked too alternative but she later relented.

We found a good tree stump once on a country walk and took it home. We put it in the garden and later put some moss on it which established. We then put two fairies on it and a fairy behind it on a stick so we have fairies at the bottom of the garden. We also put a rabbit next to it.

We have a silver birch tree which my Mum got free as a free offer from the Sunday Times as sapling and which is now a large tree. We also have loads of hanging baskets with nasturtium seeds in them as they are the best plant, grow on any soil and spread quickly and are cheap. We have lots of blue bells each year and so does everyone else because this land used to be woodland. That may be why we also have some bracken, which starts off as tiny curled up buds and unfurls it three days until it is nearly as tall as me. You can almost see it move.

We have got a flowery parasol in our table and which once blew into our garden and we never did find out where that came from.

We have got an exotic plant at the bottom of the garden which we do not know the name of but which I once took a bite out off when I was little and my Mum had to ring NHS Direct to see if it would poison me. She eventually got through to the botanics department of an obscure university which identified the plant but said that it probably wouldn't do me any harm.

We also have a planter by the back door step which now holds nasturtium seeds but which used to hold Summer Night Scented Stock grown from seed when I was a baby. My Mum says that she used to sit outside on the back door step having a cig in the summer evenings when she had just got me and my brother to bed after the day was done. She says the smell of Summer Night Scented Stock brings back happy memories.

Tuesday, 29 May 2007

Virgin Vie is a total rip-off

Today my Mum received the delivery of the goods which she ordered at the Virgin Vie party which she went to at the weekend with her friend Sally, who had asked her to go with her.

I went to a Virgin Vie party at Sally's house which is opposite and when Holly and I heard of the Virgin Vie party at Sally's friend's house we went round to Sally's to ask if we could go too but she said there would be no room.

When we came home from school my Mum said there would be a surprise delivery coming round which was a present for me.

When the lady delivered the Virgin Vie bag we went into the sitting room to look at the contents. It was great - a 'Day Spa Fizzical Workout' and loads of necklaces and earrings which we put on.

When my Mum came in she went mad and said to take off all the jewellrey as that was Sally's order and my present was the Fizzical Workout.

When my Dad came home my Mum was moaning to him that she had spent ten quid on a tube of cream and that Richard Branson had probably made nine quid profit out of her. She said that she always felt obliged to buy something at these parties because people laid on food and otherwise it was embarrassing and you didn't like to say no if you were asked to go. She said that Virgin Vie was an example of cynical capitalism which expoited people's good will and friendship. She said that it was no wonder the Virgin Rep said there were no plans to open any Virgin Vie shops because just seen on the shelves of a shop no one would buy such over-priced tat.

When Sally rang my Mum said she would just use a little bit of the Fizzical Workout at a time as it was a little pricey. Sally must have felt a little bit guilty as she sent round a tube of Go Hawaii Sun Seeker Shimmering Body Souffle which she had bought at a previous Virgin Vie party and hadn't used because she said the smell made her feel sick.

Monday, 28 May 2007

Horses on the Common

Horses on the Common, you've got to watch them.

There is a Common near our house which we have to walk past to get to school. There are a whole load of horses on it. Some people feed them on the way to school, like the dinner lady who throws across the fence all the veg which hasn't been eaten.

The horses seem to know what time school starts or finishes because they are always standing by the fence just before the time inspite of the fact they have a massive Common to run about on. There is another school at the opposite of the Common which has different starting and finishing times and at the right time the horses switch sides of the Common and stand by the fence at that school.

You've got to be careful if you are carrying a bag across the Common because the horses assume you have food in it. Once my Mum was walking the dogs on the Common and had her bag with her, felt breathing down her neck and turned to see a big horse following her. She screamed and made for the fence while Holly, Jack and me stood on the right side of the fence laughing.

The horses have returned to the wild and run about like a herd. Suddenly one will start running and the rest of them follow. My Mum tries to avoid them if possible but once spent quite some time in a thicket while the horses thundered past.

Once one jumped over the fence and ran down the path and even landed up in the school playground until a lady with experience of horses managed to calm it and put a rope round it and take it back. Some have also been seen grazing on the roundabout.

My dog Scampy

My dog Scampy is a little black terrier cross with a moustache and beard and a fringe which covers his forehead so that when he looks at you you only see one eye. He looks like that dog you can see on some of the dog tins at Morrisons.

He spends a lot of his time sitting on the front window sill looking for cats. Since we have two guinea pigs who spend a lot of their time in a mobile run which my Mum moves round the lawn it is like cat city round here.

Although he doesn't like cats himself he does display cat-like behaviour like lapping up the left-over milk in the cereal bowls which are left on the sitting room floor in the morning.

If somebody leaves the front door open, or even opens the door to go out, he takes his opportunity to escape and chase the cats by brushing past their legs in an instant. He runs down all the ten foots and we have to go and get him back. Once our neighbour who was building a paved parking space outside his house knocked on the door and said he had just seen Scampy running past. Another time Rob, who is Jack's friend's Dad, was just parking the car and told Jack that he had just seen Scampy running past.

He needs a lot of exercise and even after a walk will still bring my Mum a ball to throw for him. Sometimes my Mum cannot be bothered so she has put an ironing board against the wall in the sitting room and throws the ball at the ironing board and it bounces off the ironing board at an angle down the hall to give him a good run so she can sit and read the paper.

He waits for the postman and we have had to buy a mail box to put outside for him to put the letters in.

He can find a ball in a corn field.

He also barks at boys and birds in the sky and cats in hedges.


I have a new friend called Natalie who has just moved in opposite. She has some great trainers called 'Heelys' which are special trainers with wheels on the bottom so you can be walking along normally and suddenly you can be sliding along like Michael Jackson doing a moonwalk.

I thought these were great and wanted some, putting a lot of pressure on my Mum by crying a lot, flouncing about and pointing out that her brother had just had £150 spent on him on electronic equipment for his birthday.

I elicited a promise from my Mum that she would get the 'Heelys' the next day but since our car has broken down and we only have the old landrover 'Bob' which only sits one passenger and which my Mum cannot drive anyway we had to walk to the shops.

The nearest shops were about two miles away. It was a Sunday and nearly all the shops were shut anyway but we walked the length of the high street going in all the sports and shoe shops, but no luck.

However, we did not give up but continued walking, at one time along the grass verge of a dual carriageway, and ended up at the Retail Park in the centre of town. Hooray, the shop had some 'Heelys' and as Scampy was tied to a post outside barking getting upset and I had to spend some time trying on the 'Heelys' Mum asked the security guard if we could just bring him in for a moment because after all it was not a food shop. I at last found the right size but just as we were leaving the shop another security guard said "Excuse me, you are not allowed dogs in here" and my Mum said "Excuse me, I've just got permission and I've just spent fifty quid in here, if you know what I mean."

Friday, 18 May 2007

Missed first double bass lesson

I missed my first double bass lesson today as yesterday I sprained my arm doing handstands. When I got home I insisted on bandaging up my arm with a crepe bandage and, as we haven't got a sling bandage, making a sling with an old faded flowery pillow case. We had no safety pins to fix the bandage so used red masking tape instead. So as not to be left out Holly wanted a flowery pillow case sling too and we walked about a bit with them on until Holly's Mum saw her and told her to take it off as she looked stupid.

I dictated a letter to my Mum to my teacher saying that as I have sprained my arm I would not be able to write very well and let the other children know so that they could take extra care and not to bump into me.

A bandage craze seems to have started and everytime we get a little knock from playing on our roller blades we come in to get a bit of gauze which we secure with the red tape.

Monday, 14 May 2007

Shouting through the windows

As we have just got new double glazing (before we had old windows which you could fall through) Holly and I spend a lot of our time standing on the window sills and shouting through the top little open window. We shout at the boys we like or passers by.

We have just got new neighbours who are very quiet and you hardly ever see them. Today for the first time we saw them in the garden. We shouted through the window "What are you called? What, what do you say, are you called Beryl? Can't you hear us? Are you deaf?" but they went in again.

Later we were shouting through the window in my bedroom when my Mum came in and told us to get off the window sill as we might fall through the window. A few minutes later we came and asked my Mum for a bottle of tomato sauce. A few minutes later Holly came running to my Mum and said that Eleanor had fallen through the window. My Mum went rushing out of the door and found me lying on the path outside covered in tomato sauce. This backfired when later on I fell off a wall and Holly went running to my Mum and she didn't believe her.

Sunday, 13 May 2007

Fair in the Park

Today I went with my Mum and Holly to a travelling fair in a park near our house. I have always liked fairground rides and am not even scared of the adult rides. My favourite ride is Crazy Frog.

I have always been like this and even as a baby liked to be pushed very high in a swing. We have got a fridge magnet of a picture taken on the Dragon Ride rollercoaster at Legoland and my brother and Mum are screaming but I am laughing.

We went on all of the rides and my Mum took a lot if pictures with her digital camera but since the rides were very fast they all came out with pictures of other people and the back of our heads. We like screaming and holding our hands up and Mum says all you can see are two blond pony tails bobbing about and blowing in the wind.

We had corn-on-the cob and it started raining. The park soon emptied but we wanted one last ride on the Crazy Frog. For some reason the bloke waited to see if the ride would fill up while we sat in the rain even though the park was emptying. As my Mum had warned we did not enjoy the ride but were absolutely soaking and had to be partly carried home where we warmed up with hot chocolate and a hot bath.

We watched the Eurovision until late and ate Dairylea Luncheables with my brother which we love but don't normally have and which my Mum only bought as they were reduced to 20p each. My brother Jack thought Terry Wogan is a card.

Tuesday, 8 May 2007

Double Bass

I have got a double bass from school to play in the orchestra. My Mum suggested we volunteered for this instrument and not the cello as it would sound better when I was practising and the bass line of the orchestra is simpler to play than the higher pitched instruments so I wouldn't have to practise as much anyway. We listened on the internet to see what a double bass sounded like and heard one playing 'Twinkle, twinkle little star'. I was a bit put off as it sounded a bit low and funny and we were laughing.

It took three people to carry my double bass home from school and people stopped to stare. I played it with Holly on the recorder and asked to go busking but since my Mum and Dad have signed an agreement to pay £250 if it gets broken they said no.

I saw Mrs Prosser my music teacher visiting her sister who lives next door and stood at our window with my double bass and she gave the double thumbs up sign.

Tessa is Badly

Tessa has not been very well. This is to be expected as she is fifteen. However last week one morning she couldn't even get up and appeared not to be able to see or hear. She couldn't even find her water bowl and had to walk up against the fence in the garden to find anything. She found it difficult to get up.

We took her to the vets who said she wasn't in pain and gave her some tablets. My Mum bought the best super deluxe gourmet dog food for toy dogs as she still wanted to eat and we disguised the tablets in sausage rolls.

This week she has made an amazing recovery. She suddenly wanted to go for walks again like she was desparate to keep going and had found her will to live. At first we took her on tiny walks up the street and she was a bit shaky but now she does a little playful skip while we put the lead on and is walking quite a long way.

Today I went with Holly to 'the hill' which is an old railway embankment and is a good slope for things like sledging. As there is no snow at the moment we use my brother's skateboards. We got there by my Mum pulling us both by bits of string with us on the skateboards. When she got tired we tried one person being pulled by Mum and the other by Scampy but that didn't work as he gets too excited and goes too fast.

We had a great time on the skateboards, doing it separately and racing the skateboards and doing it with Holly on my knee. Once when we did this Holly fell off and hurt herself, but not badly. Because I didn't show enough sympathy she stormed off and my Mum had to follow her because afterall she was responsible for her. She bought us both Magnums but I have still fallen out with her.