Anila Kitteon

Anila Kitteon
Sniff the Daffs

Wednesday, 25 December 2013

Grammatically Correctamundo...

Goodness me. I am failing miserably lately and dedicating any time to this.  I love photos and can fiddle/edit/upload/download/insideoutload photos until I literally fall asleep. Which doesn't leave much time fer Blogging. Which is why I've decided to Just Do It!

It's not that Blogging never crosses my mind. It does. Often. And I don't want to spend yet another 'post' whinging about time restraints. I also don't want to worry about having to fill in backlog about how we ended up here (Handsome Geek and me). Cuz let's be serious, nobody really gives a fuck! :P

So here are some random thoughts, facts and announcements from my brain. I don't want to write in too much detail (I struggle with the lack of freedom). Despite writing as anonymously and objectively as I can, people I know/love might possibly read and be upset by my writings. What is the chance of this? My Blogging friends seem to keep it 'nice'. It's about things/places in general. Or children. Who seemingly not only won't be offended in the future, but will also be thankful to have a 'blog' of their upbringing/early years. What an interesting generation we are producing.

Fact One: HG (my handsome geek - husband) and I have agreed we can have much fun together and live life to the fullest if we boycott the reproducing part of being human. I think my body has come to terms with this now and barely pesters me at all with pangs! :-P
Yes, I wonder what our offspring with look like and I lurve children (for a couple of hours at least) and I do love watching small people learn and develop. And teens too. We think we might borrow an adolescent if we come across that craving later in life. For now we lap up every moment together and are happy for our moments to be interrupted by as little as possible.

Thought Two: How quiet it is outside, surrounded by sparkly white pristine snow.

Interesting Thing About Me Number Three: I love grammar. I love the English language and playing with it's letters/words (on purpose). E.g. Fanx... HG and I both share a love of the English language (we much enjoy using unusual words and descriptions over here to startle the Canadians!). PS Here's an example I discovered today. It initially excited me, as I thought it was a play on words. I soon felt disappointment when I realised it was intentional. I accept that some people struggle with reading/writing/spelling. But in a world-wide known store (although famous for treating staff poorly), I expected more. All the same, I couldn't resist a snap:

What's More Number Four: I've made up a word to describe myself: Feek. I've decided I'm a Fake Geek. I've always been friends with boys (and girls) who love science, films and games. I'm now married to one. Luckily he also likes trying to understand the human mind/traits/personalities etc. as I do.  My (geekish) girlfriend made up a word also: FOMO. She struggles with what she calls Fear Of Missing Out. She therefore tries her hardest to get herself to most of what she has committed or been invited too. She is learning to enjoy the moment and accept that stuff will happen without you - you can't be everywhere. AND that sometimes not being present, but being missed, is a smug kinda feeling (I used to vanish for an hour or so in nightclubs on my own little adventures - people usually asked where I'd been!).

OK so having Googled, it appears she isn't the first to come up with this notion. I've just found an article. Have you seen this, RB?

Woah there is loads on FOMO! Lots to read but for now it's sleepy time.
Goodnight and Merry Crimbo!

Tuesday, 29 October 2013

This Crase in Plazy...

So I've decided that yes, I want/love/desire to 'blog' and am inspired when reading friends' posts. I log little notes for myself on topics that make me think, and I endeavour to get tapping... so here I am in bed, in the morning, taking 10mins to get a post started.... if not posted!!

I can't decide where I want my blog to go... others seem to have topics: children, training to achieve their physical goals, babies... and most writings seem harmless. Not that mine won't be, but not everyone shares my thoughts/morals/opinions. We're all different tho eh? Don't read it if ya don't like it!

HG recently showed me a girl's blog which is all about nudity, sex, porn etc. so each to their own. I can't decide how personal to get and whether I want people around me reading about the things in my head. However, my blogging friend tells me that people soon get over the initial excitement when you tell them you 'have a blog' and most probably don't even bother continuing to read. Well this is a boring post so far!! :P

What I do love is that I can type ANY WORDS into Google Images and find some photos matching what I am envisioning... 

... although ironically I can't find anything right now!

So I should probably do short blogs as and when init...?

I should probably credit the place/person/site from which I find these pics too. Oh well.

Now this is a rambling blog. So this is the result of morning blogging. I'll try a different time of day tomorrow... :-D

Wrapping Up a Life... or Four.

October 2012 to March 2013 was spent in mental transition... as our belongings got packed up and stored/shipped or donated...

My Cat Likes To Hide In Boxes - Cosy! :-D

The topics we got stuck on a few times were:
a) When to sell the first of our two cars - most sensibly Tom's, but see previous post about how tired I became attempting to save money by using one car; getting him to work on time (7:50am) then working the full-time + extra hours I'd dedicated myself to...
b) Our beloved bed! Kingsize and our prized posession (many Saturday mornings I would collect pastries as I cycled home from Bootcamp, wake HG & we'd watch films & series to our hearts content, usually with a purring puss or two snuggled next to us)...
c) Definitely most importantly, the aforementioned and much loved kitty cats. It broke our hearts to have to pass them onto new owners, however we couldn't afford to ship them and this also seemed more unfair to us than rehoming them. Both found loving homes with humanz to give them regular cuddles & affection <3

Kitties confused by the departure of all the house plants... donated to a friend & colleague; I wonder if they're still alive!

Mum (on right) & son (one of four) didn't get cosy near each other very often, so this was a delightful sight...

During the months, we spent time working on a lengthy visa application (including a day trip to Berkshire for HG to have a medical examination, a Police Check and a Love Story of our beautiful relationship!); handing notices in at relevant times, ending work relationships with Young People (I'd just become confident in my new position & had even earned a higher paygrade), and saying g'bye to friends and family.

Between December and March, my Gran became more frail, sick and generally unwell. She'd been in and out of hospital/residential home and began to deteriorate.

For Christmas I'd bought my Mum a voucher for a night in a hotel with yours truly, as I saw the quality time together as meaningful when we didn't have much longer in the same country. A few hours into our weekend together, we got a call to say my Gran's health had declined. We bailed the hotel and headed back to see Gran. We stayed with her and other family members until late. In the morning, I managed to get Mum to come for a blustery walk and some lunch before we returned to the hospital.

Now, I feel that Granny deserves more than a snippit in this rushed post. So I intend to dedicate more to her; I have a list of things I remember and love about her, so I shall add this someday.

Things started happening... in February, I posted the application to sponsor my HG as a spouse, whom I, as a Canadian Citizen, will be responsible for, for 3yrs after his permanant residency has been approved. I put maximum effort into the application - not wanting to chance anything being incorrect - as we were jumping straight into Canadian life prior to the application's completion. In the meantime, Tom would be on a Work Visa.

Not long after, this arrived...
and so whizzed our life through our last few months, weeks and days in UK.

Meanwhile, JR & his wife were expanding, preparing & working hard to include us in their business, home and life...

Thursday, 10 October 2013

Maple Heaven

Hi. I started this post around June 2013 sometime and life has been catching up with me; so many things I want to chat about but working on this 'blog' always gets pushed to the bottom of the pile: 10:30pm after a day of working, cleaning, baking.... sore eyes! So I'll try to whizz thru the general catch-up info to make sure it makes sense!

So HG and I got married in 2010 (officially) and 2011 (unofficially but as we wanted). We contributed savings to our monetary wedding gifts and headed to Canada in August 2012 for a HoneyMoon.

My Brother and Dad have been living in Canada for over 10 years (Dad longer and also at other stages in his life previous). On our belated Honeymoon, we headed to Niagara Falls for a mini Honeymoon (hot tub in the bedroom,lights & mirror above the bed) for a couple of nights, before visiting family.

My Brother, JR, and his wife showed us their world. From a kayak. Paddling out by both a Blue Moon, with a beautiful colourful sunset. The lake was lit up pink; the trees on the islands had shadows produced by the moon... It felt so magical and unreal!

Long story short, we had the most amazing time; the four of us got on well and JR & his wife offered us a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to move over, live with them and help them with their business.

HG didn't stop mentioning Canada, as I had expected him to, even once we were back into the full swing of work. He grew to further dislike his current career position and longed for space, new opportunities and to work outside. I, being the historic driving force of any ideas to live elsewhere, started to believe this could actually happen and therefore researched moving companies, pet passports, employment, visa options and flights...

Sunday, 28 April 2013


I mentioned previously that we had changes coming up... and that my last post was written during my final week of work...

Work = supporting young people and their families to make positive changes. This was a council/government based job, and therefore presented it's own frustrations and restrictions. But I feel very confident that I have donated much of my time and energy into the county and society into which I was born. I also feel honoured to have met some people (mainly teens), who have been through much more emotional turmoil than they should have during their short lives and are still battling through. I took much pleasure in convincing them that despite their determined efforts to behave like a fool (often an display/example of their self-esteem), I still like them and they still have a million reasons to be the best they can be - which is more than they usually realise.

The cheekiest I got toward my own parents was when I frustratingly stated "I didn't ask to be born!!" and I have suggested to HG in the past that we could easily have been born as someone else; into a different family. I.e: a poor family in Africa, to gay parents, to a mother struggling with addictions etc. which is one of the things that encourages me to empathise and feel uber lucky with my lot. However, HG advises me that no, we couldn't be born as someone else I am the only one who is me, with my genes and my thoughts... now this man definitely amazes me and tickles my brain, but I do believe he is on the autistic spectrum and therefore sees things very black and white. I believe that it doesn't matter what/who/how my empathy is empowered, just that it is. My point being: I give a shit. And have found myself in very giving jobs - both paid, unpaid and in more than one at once. To the extent that (as noted in previous post), my personal life has been affected. I'm not whinging; many have far more demanding jobs/lives than I do. I do however, pride myself in continuing to make an effort in my relationship, as does HG. 

This is assisted by the decision that has released the pressure felt by many others of our age: to live our lives child-free... (another time, another post).

SO! Having given a lot of me, my energy & emotions to Blighty, I feel no guilt in leaving both my job and the country, for HG & me to take up a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. Ok, an ripple of guilt at leaving the Young People, staff (some brilliant friends) and my positive reputation & general good-doings. But not enough to stop me.

I'll break the story down into a few blog posts, as this story could get lengthy!

Wednesday, 13 March 2013

Burn Out

It would appear that one cannot run on air and food alone.

Recently, HG has discovered a game (PC) that he enjoys playing enough to remain sitting at his computer desk in his mastermind-esque chair until well into the night. Now this doesn't/shouldn't have a direct impact on his wife, yet she does tend to occupy herself until HG comes downstairs to brush his teeth (well actually she hears him push his chair away from his desk and leaps up to claim first dibs on the electric toothbrush!).

Anyway, for the past 4 months (approx) I have been working Monday evenings at the Youth Club attached to our building. For the past 4 weeks, I have also been co-ordinating a family group AND volunteering with a charity on Thursday evenings. So my schedule has looked like this:

  • Mondays - Arrive home around 10:30pm
  • Tuesdays - No work but only opportunity for exercise
  • Wednesdays - Arrive home around 8:45pm
  • Thursdays - Arrive home around 9:45pm
  • Fridays - No work but rare quality time with HG (or friends)
This hadn't been working too badly, because on the days I work late, HG takes his own car and I don't have to leave the house at 7:15am to get him to work for 8am.

However, last Monday we car shared, walked a dog as a favour, then HG caught train and I worked at Youth Club. So petrol money saved but less rest for myself.

Tuesday was an early but comparatively short day but it also included supervision, where I was advised to stay focused, on track and "leave a legacy" during my last month of work (I'll come to that later).

With meetings to be in early for on Wednesday and Thursday, and bedtimes around midnight (alarm goes off at 6:10am), I started to lag. This wasn't helped by the pressure of 'leaving a legacy' through leading a meeting with my team about filling in the gaps when I've moved on.

Friday, HG and I had a discussion about something or other and I found myself crying (which always upsets him). I dropped him off, worried about me, and re-opened the floodgates as I drove the 7mins to my own office. There, some workmen were waiting to speak to someone and I pulled myself together while I dealt with the situation.

I battled through the morning, chatted to kind colleagues and listened to my body (too late) as I cancelled the lady at the charity to say I didn't think it was sensible to work all day Saturday in the state I'd become. It also hit me that I had only attended my Gran's funeral a week ago (relevant as the charity support families who have lost a loved one). 

The thing that triggered my tears in the car that morning, was when HG said "you're so giving..." It hit me at that point that this quality had become both my gift and my downfall. I needed to give myself some support, rather than giving away all my energy. HG has said to me in the past that he only gets what little energy I have remaining after work, groups and exercise. I guess I can see why he gets frustrated when our time together usually involves getting cosy and watching a film; which equates to me finally relaxing. To the point where I just sleep. This isn't fun for him, but is heaven for me.

So. Saturday session bailed on, my Manager then thanks me for my email (summarising the outcome of Thursday's meeting) but points out that it wasn't what she had asked for and could I now do this (seemingly huge project). I begged myself not to start crying again, attempted to clarify her requests, advised I would write some notes and check I understood her. I then packed up and shuffled out of the door, driving back up the road for 7+mins (slightly further) and crying again as I went. I have now renamed that stretch of road Teardrop Way.

The afternoon went ok (I distracted myself in a different, lovely Youth Centre), collected HG and took him for his early birthday treat (proper Italian gelato - his fave!).

My friend came round in the evening and I got up early to say goodbye Saturday morning. With my Saturday now re-claimed, I busied myself making HG birthday cakes, cleaning, pottering etc. (anything but actually resting!). Friends came round at 6pm, we got ready and walked 40mins to the restaurant for HG's birthday meal. We ate, drank and hit a pub (which we very rarely do) before catching a cab home, chatting, eating cake and hitting the sack at 3am.

Sunday - my only opportunity for exercise - I wished HG a Happy Birthday and whizzed off to Bootcamp :) On my return, the in-laws were only 20-30mins away so I ushered sleepy friends around, HG into shower and tidied/washed up.

By the afternoon I was flaking. I don't know how people fit children into their life/agenda! It was icy cold and windy outside. I said outloud that I didn't have the energy to attend my friend's outdoor wildlife event in the afternoon so we relaxed. HG cooked (on his own birthday!), we loaded the in-laws' car with 'stuff' from our home and waved them off. HG took the hint that I fancied time alone, however was later very upset that I'd wasted my energy on bootcamp and we hadn't actually had any time together. I'd done it again.

Monday morning we car shared - I hadn't been to bed particularly early and felt like pants.

I felt sorry for myself all morning, got very little done and met HG in our lunchbreaks (also a rare occurrence these days).  After lunch I said hi to my friend (same building, different office), we started chatting and I found myself balling again...
A friend I had been texting was begging me to head home, as massive snowfall was heading towards our town (as it was some colleagues/friends took 4-9hrs to get home). So I did it. I cancelled on the people I was due to see/work with and headed home. Crying.

Once home I slept. However my cold/illness had transformed into a stomach bug. I have ended up having Tuesday AND Wednesday off!

There's a slightly reassuring feeling when the decision is taken out of our hands. I'd like to thank my body (the most amazing instrument we'll ever have) for forcing me to stop.

However time is creeping on once again this evening - it's so hard to get to bed early!

New mission:
Do NOT turn computer on after groups. Instead head straight to bed.

Wish me luck!

Saturday, 2 March 2013

Bean On Bored

People have had signs in their cars for years now, notifying us all that they have a baby/small person/princess/some kind of small child-like item travelling as a passenger in their vehicle.

Now, my background of work experience and knowledge, as many of my cringing friends and family know, combined with my 'lack of inner-monologue' occasionally gets me into a bit of a pickle. I studied Social Care followed by Criminology & Criminal Justice, due to my endless inquisition of human beans. What makes people do the things they do? How can behaviour be explained by a combination of genetics and environmental factors? Through my experiences of Social Work, Residential Children's Homes and Youth Justice, there is little that shocks me. There is very little that a human somewhere in the world isn't capable of... ok I'm losing myself now!

I used to want to 'save the world'. I have no idea where I got the idea from that the world was so bad and needed saving - perhaps it began when I desperately wanted to rescue a Romanian orphan. Which a teacher at our school did. He was my hero - even more than he had been before. So I had decided that Police work was the way forward - they sort out "bad" people, however this never felt right because I empathised with the 'criminals' too much. I used to think "what has happened to you to result in you taking these actions?".

So my own wandering thoughts became combined with my experiences of the shit deal some children end up with (which turns shittier when they become 18yrs old and have less support and harsher consequences - yet have missed out on ever being made to feel worthwhile).

Discussed many times with my husband, over our 6.5yrs together, we repeatedly end up agreeing that we could have a ridiculously good life with much less hassle and stress, if we skipped the whole reproducing part of society's expectations.

If I could create a law, it would be for people to be at least 25yrs old before they can have a child. However, others aren't as keen to learn more about the world and themselves as I am!

So how does this relate to the original heading?! What a round-about route I take - are you even still reading?!

What makes people go out and buy those signs?

HG: I hate those 'baby on board' signs.
Me: How come?
HG: Why do you think people feel the need to advertise that they have a baby/child on board?
Me: Ummm to remind/encourage other road users to drive carefully?
HG: Why wouldn't drivers be doing this anyway?

HG has a way of stretching my brain. I didn't have an answer, so asked for his thoughts. He suggested that the signs were a way of announcing fertility.

All I could picture was this:

I have since researched this and the Telegraph online tells me that the signs are designed to alert the emergency vehicles as to where there might be small people requiring assistance as a priority. Firstly, the Telegraph says they are actually causing accidents (see below:)

Secondly, I Googled deeper and found that others are irritated by the signs too. One lady, due to her struggle to procreate herself, sees it as a boasting advert for what she can't have. This leads my thoughts to alcoholics and how signs advertising alcohol must torment them.

So anyway, this lady's blog reminds me once again how suitable our decision is - why waste your time worrying about how close to 30 you're getting and (once there), when you'll finally have a baby of your own... when life is passing you by and there is more than plenty to enjoy without a crying, pooey, demanding bundle of ball-and-chain?
It frustrates the hell out of me when older ladies tilt their heads to one side and say "well... you've got time to change your mind; you're still young...".

Don't get me wrong, I love children, but I know (maybe too much) what a high proportion of the next generation are doomed for and it doesn't make me eager to contribute.

I also know that I'm very lucky to have found a husband who tickles, pleases, stimulates and challenges me; meaning I don't feel I have a gap in my life which needs filling with a wriggling bundle of goo-goo-ga-ga. I will happily play a positive part in the lives of the children around me, and enjoy watching them grow and develop into little adults. I do my part in helping the Teenagers (they deserve a capital letter) already born into this world and finding it a struggle; and those who are developing unhelpful learned behaviours and to have a sense of entitlement, despite their negative actions.

All we can do is live our lives to the best of our ability - taking into account the planet's needs and the needs of those around us. This is sadly difficult in a world where it's difficult to find the truth.

Goodness me, this is an essay. Sorry!

Blogiary Diarog...

It's my Diary & I'll Blog if I want to...

So.... I wanna Blog. Forget the diary (I will keep my fave purple book - bought for wedding guests comments but not needed - for more private stuffs).

I worked Youth Club tonight and I actually felt I did a good job. It's nice to feel proud of oneself occasionally! I reigned in 2 challenging young girls and had a laugh as we baked cookies :-D

I recently found a diary in a bookshop called 'Wreck This Journal' (Keri Smith). A brilliant idea, the diary has a different instruction on each page i.e. drop this building from a high wall/building, colour a page in with coffee, colour outside the lines, punch holes in a page etc. I was enthralled with it - what a brilliant way of promoting creative thinking and slight rebellion. I want to buy one for myself and everyone I know! I've also seen Keri has authored 'This Is Not a Book' and 'Mess: The Manual of Accidents and Mistakes'.

It also links to the Young People we work with. Their lives are very different to the childhood I was lucky to experience. Their parents regularly tell them they're worth very little and many have been in physical conflict with another member of their family (and usually people outside too). I have to remind myself that they have never been encouraged to care about other people, let alone the planet (I'm on a constant recycling mission!), as this kindness is unlikely to have been shown toward them. In their experience it's each to their own; take what you can get otherwise you might miss out.

They're good kids, and the chipping away that we do each week can't do any harm (I have to believe this), but we also can't change the culture they're raised in. And who is to say we should.

Although when working with parents, I used to wonder if they had even considered/realised how much research and studies had been done around what harms/stimulates a child. Their lives were often so chaotic, which is what they were used to, that parenting as a subject may not have crossed their minds.

Young People, certainly myself, are taught by society and the adults around them, to do as they're told. Yet many adults aren't role modelling positive behaviour. In my case, I didn't fit much rebellion into my life, apart from a nightclub experience at 15yrs old and a minute tattoo at 18yrs! My parents split when I was 16yrs so I pretty much became an adult and a friend to my Mum. Not her fault, as who knows who to handle and marriage breakdown.

So blogging, writing, wrecking journals are all fab. Exploring, reading, learning and praise :-D I'm reading a cheesy American book at the moment about keeping your mind open to opportunities, breathing, taking life in and finding your Gift.

Who knows where we or any of these Young People will end up. All we can do is our best to contribute positively to their lives and role model kindness.

Saturday, 19 January 2013

Keepin' it Real

I have recently run out of room in the notebook (aka Diary) I use to log my daily movements (not bowel related). I have been writing a journal-type log since (I think) 1997. One day I'd like a house with a room to contain all my photos and diaries - lined up on shelves looking cool... people used to say I'd need an entire room dedicated to all albums of photos I took. Then I met my sister-in-law... the only person I've met who is more snap-happy than me! Yay!

This is a load of ramble - tangents are my speciality ! :-P My 'diary entries' have been boring me of late. I wouldn't wish the mind-numbing reading on anyone! The trouble is, I'm too happy. I now understand how artists, musicians etc. who were struggling, addicted, depressed etc. managed to create such powerful works. Anger, rage, confusion and despair are such overwhelming emotions, with such negative energies behind them. Oh pants, another tangent. Sorry.

In the past, I have written a diary/journal and it's been remotely interesting - with thanks to a few of the emotions mention above and below:

However, for the past few years, I've been happy... life with HG is never dull and I could be there all day writing about the happy times and fun things we get up to (however small), but it would mean missing out on the next real live moment with him.