Monday, March 13, 2017

Jan-Feb '17 Pictures: Sanitary Pads & Family (What can I say)

We bought sanitary pads for refugee woman. And we wrote postcards to politicians. And we drank. And we had fun. 

Would have given my arm to be there with my cousin Kay, my dad, and my family 

Our refugee friends. 

With our Brit & refugee friends

Earshad is a lovely lad. I wish every person on earth could meet him. 

Red hair! I love that this lad is a rebel.

Getting his  Cub Scout "Arrow of Light" with his friend. 

Arrow of Light

My boy

Crossing over to Boy Scouts

Crossing the bridge to Boy Scouts

Jack's Boy Scout ceremony

Women's rally with Mo, Karen & Erika. I'm so glad I'm surrounded by STRONG, BADASS women.

More strong, badass women, raising money for our school


Thursday, March 09, 2017

Feminism

I have so many things I want to post - pictures, videos, updates on Scouts, school, jobs, life.
All cosy stuff.  All nice & fluffy, funny stuff.

But I'm going to talk about another topic - Feminism. That word to me means I'm part of a tribe of women who live on this planet and we all know what it means to have periods, or be a mother, or have a rough time with kids. It's a club that we belong to. It has no negative aspect, it really doesn't. What possible horrible things has feminism done over the last 1,000 years?

The one thing I cannot understand is a woman saying "I'm not a feminist".  I want to say "the reason you don't need to be a feminist sweetheart is that women ahead of you fought for your rights. Feminism has brought the vote and a certain level of respect, but there is still a lot to do....

During the Arnold Schwarzenegger Classic, Columbus Ohio is the 2nd place in the country for sex trafficking.
Women earn 30% less than men in America
Trump is going to defund Planned Parenthood that offer pap smears & mammograms
Trump wants to ban abortion. In other words: Woman are too damn stupid to make their own decision about their body.
America has NO maternity leave (ranks LAST worldwide)
Women of colour are treated badly, especially Muslim women, and refugees, and women who wear head scarfs, and gay women. Need I go on?
Women who work their ass off in agriculture and have no rights, no good pay, no respect.

The feminist movement also recognizes and supports other groups.  It's all about social justice, love, kindness & being helpful.

My message to these women: If you hate feminism, or are scared of it, you need to ask yourself why.




Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Danny at 8

He's eight! How did that happen.

He's a tall, skinny, picky eater whirlwind. He dresses himself, and always chooses his own things. So independent.

Loves Loves Loves Pokemon. Likes Nerf guns and other toys....But LOVES Pokemon. Knows them all, knows all the cards, the characters, the points, the powers, the evolved characters. All he wanted for birthdays and Christmas's the last 18 months has been Pokemon.

He's an awesome roller skater, runner, and soccer player. He refuses to ride a bike, eat an egg/meat/salad/veggies/beans/soup and any other food he doesn't like the look of. He's the same with clothes. Who knew there was so much vetting as to the virtues of certain underpants. 

He takes his own sweet goddamn time. I once called him "Danny 20" because it takes him 20 minutes just to move but then immediately stopped as I know kids become what they are called (crap parenting moment). But good grief he's slow to get going.

His heart is HUGE. He has empathy. He notices things I never notice.

My hope for Danny this year is for him to love himself more, to stop saying negative things to himself. To step it up a bit with the chores and try a bit harder with reading & writing. 
But mostly, to continue being himself and to have fun with his friends. He has a good soul this one. A really good soul.  Love you Danny x


Thursday, January 12, 2017

My Fierce and Strong Nana

I had a conversation with my mum at the weekend about women in my family. I'm going to be "marching" soon and wanted to know if my Nana was a suffragette. Since women didn't get to vote in the England till 1928 I thought she might have been an activist. I had visions of her as a trail blazer and a feminist because I know that she was strong as nails.  Turns out she was both of those things (and much more) but didn't march.

She was the mum of 7 kids and beloved by all. My Granddad was a horseman in World War 1 and had the most terrible experience that left him shell shocked and never the same (if you have watched "War Horse" you will know what he endured). He died just before I was born, in 1969.

Smithy Lane - the road my Nana & The Mission is on
My Nana was amazing. She brought up seven kids and did so during great hardship. She cooked food over the fire (imagine, no oven), hand washed everything, grew vegetables and fruit in the garden. She worked hard. I remember her house clearly - a semi-detached house on Smithy Lane that was always safe & felt like home when you visited.

Even though I was young when she died I remember a few things:

  • Putting on a singing & dancing show in her back garden to the family with my cousin Julie and charging everyone 50p to watch.
  • Going to The Mission (named The Good Shepherd in this Google map image) next door to her house each Sunday, for Sunday School. That place was our family church and I spent most of my childhood at services or at fetes or decorating the harvest window. 
  • My Nana teaching me how to fold and criss-cross paper so that it burned slowly in the fireplace.
  • Nana letting me borrow a craft book on the day that she died.  
  • The terrifying, awful night time phone call, informing my mum that her mum had died in a car crash.
  • Her funeral
She died in a car accident when I was 9 and I wished I had known her more.

I was wondering what I should put on my sign at the march but I just got my answer. I'm going to celebrate this kick-ass, strong, kind Nana of mine. 



Nana, Uncle Harry, Auntie May, Auntie Ada & my mum

Nana

Nana & mum

My Beautiful Nana