Turns out, bees flock to blue

The unexpected side effect of having painted our house blue is that bumble bees now flock to it. They land on the blue walls and sit there for extensive periods of time. We've started planting flowers so they would at least have something to do around the house, but it'll be a while before the plants are established. Have we done a disservice to the bees by painting the house blue? Are they wasting valuable time doing nothing, rather than looking for nectar, and will now be worse off as a result?

Monday musings

Friends have come for a visit. They've got 4 kids. Their motorhome only just fits in our back yard. Sort of!


My husband's already away. Tomorrow hers is leaving, too, so between us there will be six kids under the age 9 (say whaaat!) - four hers, two mine.

It's not even as much of a mayhem as I expected. It's hectic, yes, and we go through a lot of food, but the house is still standing and the kids keep each other busy, so... it works. I think. Sort of. I think :)

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I am reading a rescue report from Yosemite National Park last year. A climber named Quinn Brett fell down a rock face and had - amongst other injuries, I think - T12 burst fracture, L4 compression fracture, 4 broken ribs, scapula fracture... etc etc etc.

I am looking through the photos she has posted on Instagram and I think, what a badass! I mean... really. Look at it. Can you look at her photos and read the captions and not be in awe of this wonderful character of a woman?

She also writes a blog. Have a read. It's worth it.

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I am reading Catching Thunder (it's good story) and checking out some of their Instagram uploads, too. The Ship That Kept Giving was amusing :)

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Meanwhile, I wonder about the juncture of where me and my son meet. His support services are gradually coming away - he is getting stronger, and better, and he doesn't need them any more. I, meanwhile, am heading the other way.

I am in no way incapacitated, but nevertheless I have a twice-daily reminder of pills that are on top of the fridge that I am needing to take, and how gradually I am amassing a list of health conditions to my name. Neuro-..., immuno-... etc. Sometimes I wonder at how I used to want to work in Antarctica, and how I am very aware that even if I did apply now, I probably wouldn't get on the support crew any more. There is still a chance that, one day, I will work in Antarctica, but it won't be through the support crew. Literary programme, maybe.

A lot of the time I wear a bright red medical bracelet on my wrist. Maria Grace. Epilepsy. ICE 006421**********. From Invercargill, New Zealand. It's a part of my life now that, say, if an ocular migraine hits at 10 am when I am at a local playgroup with my daughter, I know that I have to wait until about 10:45 when my vision is back so I can drive us home, and preferably not drive the rest of that day. I also wish I had a label on my forehead that says, "I am not trying to be unrespectful, sorry. I have sunglasses on whilst I'm talking to you, inside a building, because on some days it's hard to see daylight through windows. I know that, sometimes, bright lights set off ocular migraines (and make me lose parts of my vision) so I am trying to spare my eyesight. Please don't feel bad about it."

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Life is not a literary masterpiece. It is, instead, an array of choices made along the way, in the hope of balance and a crack at happiness, and on Monday evenings at 10 o'clock it is not necessarily a comforting thought when a pile of washing is on the table and the kitchen, yet again, needs dishes cleaned, and lunchboxes packed.

What a relentless drive it requires, to raise little human beings. Geesh! I know I'm not the first (or the last) mother to say this, but... geesh!