Category: Alaric

Fun Palace Coming to Cheltenham Library 2017 :) (by )

Cuddly Science Poster for Cheltenham Library

Last year we went to a grass root community event in a disused shop in Gloucester organised by Nickie Wildin. It was part of a national movement of Fun Palaces, to fight austerity and bring arts, science and culture to... well... EVERYONE - this is one of the centre tenants to both Cuddly Science and Salaric Craft - me and Alaric believe that science and art are for everyone.

You can read and see photos of last years event here.

This year we are at Cheltenham Library on Saturday the 7th of October 2017 organised by Stephanie Organ and boy do we have a line up! There is poetry by Angela France, robots with Oh Bot who we met at the Cheltenham Science Festival, there are language sessions, crafting, Cheltenham Hackspace... and so on - just check out the posters!

I am there as both Cuddly Science and Salaric Craft complete with puppets, Alaric dressed as a yeti and surprise poetry pouches!

I am just a little bit excited about this!!!

Fun Palace Event Poster Cheltenham Library

Putting Socks On (by )

The last two weeks have been amazing, wonderful and awful at the same time - as always with our bad luck field. So yesterday Al was already in pain when he took the kids to Country File Live, they all enjoyed themselves but he was tanked up on pain killers to survive the day - what ever he did it was going to be a tanked up on pain killers day.

By the time he got home he was in considerable pain and we did all the normal - hot baths and massage and his physio - but over the last year his hip has been getting alot worse again including him having to miss Krav and park runs because he can barely walk.

This morning I had to put his socks on for him - this is not the sciatica - this is his hip (which may or may not be part of the cause for the sciatica).

He's been a bit depressed about this - the amount of pain he is in is well... loads. But more than that it means going back to the Dr to talk about hip replacements - something he has desperately been trying to ward off. Just after Mary was born he was in lots of pain and the Dr told him that his options where to pay for physical manipulation to try and slow the wear on the joint down or he would def. be having the hip replacement before he was 40.

Obvs. hip replacements are not something you really want to be getting into before you are 40 so we paid knowing it might not work or would only work for a while but hopefully would get him to past his 40th birthday. The treatment was no longer avalible on the NHS though the hip replacement would be. It worked really well for a few years and made a huge difference. Initially after Mary was born we both had mobility issues which were fortunately slightly different but we would have to co-operate to change the babies bottom!

It was a bit of a nightmare time capped off with him and the baby getting pnumonia and a house move. All that aside we had been hopeful - the manipulation did wonders and for the first time that he could remember - standing still did not hurt him!

Basically up until that point his leg had been rammed up into the hip joint, compressing and wearing it out. This was left over from some child hood accident - we don't know what but the Dr was surprised he did not remember it as it was have been painful. It was possibly falling down the stairs or something.

Anyway the joint is already worn and we were just buying time. He's been doing the strengthening exercises and working on general fitness and posture which need correcting... but then about a year ago it started to occassionally pain him again and has just been getting worse and worse and of course because he was looking after me with my zillions of hospital appointments he didn't really want to say anything as it's going to be a whole ball of medical stuff for him too etc...

Well his now shuffling about increasingly with little let up, yesterday had him walking about on hills so he is quiet frankly in agony :'(

He tends not to say when things are wrong with him but he is actually really struggling at the moment - so please be nice! No one likes it when someone else has to put their socks on for them!

I Suck at Father’s Day (by )

So today is Father's Day - me and the girls kind of forgot - to be fair we kind of forgot about Mother's Day too though I think we squeezed in a meal or something - none of us could really remember it was too busy a day.

On this Father's Day Alaric left early morning to get to his flight for America and my Dad cooked me and the girls pizza to have as our packed lunches on the train - he then drove us to the station and I had completely forgotten :/

I also messaged them both last night demanding we all write a novel together... yeah I fail at Father's Day.

Bristol and Mateys (by )

Facebook has been popping up memories from previous years - at the moment it is kind of the same thing regardless of the year... meeting up with our Friends Becca and Olly and this year is no exception!

So much food!

This year we went to Bristol and walked around the water front, slightly hampered by the outside wheelchair lift being broken but we found other ways around.

Broken lift

Then we went for lunch at Prezzo who had a gluten free menu and was quiet enough and was vegi and wasn't a bank breaker and had toilets and tables on one level and had dairy free options (as a group we quiet hard to cater for but Bristol had us covered!). We ordered a stupid amount of food as we thought the pizzas were individuals but were huge!

Birds in the harbour in bristol

Jean saw to the left overs as she'd had a kids meal and is a teeny-tweeny and now slightly taller than me and growing fast!

Mary was good and managed sitting still for the meal as she a) took daddy outside for run arounds and b) was going to get to play in the fountain - unfortunately she was then so excited about the fountain she splashed straight into it and run out of Alaric's sight and ended up in trouble! But she did then get to race Becca up and down the dock side by the M-shed which was closed by this point. Then she played with Olly going up and down the river - a stylised map set into the tarmac.

She also gave her pocket money to a homeless guy.

We popped into the german beer festival to see if any of the craft stalls etc... were still open but they weren't but there was a photo board 🙂

German Beer Festival Bristol

I'd pretty much run out of room on my camera other wise there would have been alot more photos! Including Jean sitting on John Cabot who sailed from Bristol in 14... something and found North America. A young tourist asked us questioned about him but ended up telling us more than we knew including finding the date the statue was made.

Exploring the John Cabot statue in Bristol

Looking up this (historical figure)[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Cabot] I find the finding of the Americas by Europeans is a long and distended tail and I have a whole lot more to learn including a celtic myth about Hy-Brasil which I think maybe the glass isle myth. This is all good stuff for The Punk Universe novel series I am writing.

I've been researching a lot of stuff for this series lately including discovering a myth that Jesus actually went to India and England in a world tour before returning home and being killed as a political radical. This was interesting as Becca was explaning local historical sites to me including the wells and hotspring and the fact that an ancient (as in 3000 year old) jewish religous site was found in a house basement recently - my brain instantly wondered if that was maybe a site that historical Jesus (Jesus in historical records not as/as well as a holy figure) might have visited.

There is lots of funky stone work in this area of Bristol which I love - I love both the rocks natural history and the people history that laid them there was structures.

Stone arch door bristol

Bristol is a rich city for history as most cities are... as well as modern archetecture and the interaction of society, tech, city and environment. This was highlighted quiet well by the renovated crain that has been turned into a little eco hut and the tumble down ruins becoming little oasises of plants. I never fail to find new things (some quiet old 🙂 ) to take photos of.

Stone and pipes and leaves bristol

The outing was rounded off by the kids watching a film and us rabbiting about everything and nothing and looking at photos from our uni days - Mary's comment on seeing a picture of my by three giant axes in Greece "mummy you were so small!".

Of course I ran out of camera space so missed the giant beetle eating my children - but fortunately Becca was there!

Jean and Mary being eaten by a giant stag beetle in bristol

CampNaNo April 2017 (by )

I love writing challenges - they are a bit trickier these days with my limited time window of working brain but it is still possible. One of the things I like about them is not feeling al on my on 🙂

Alaric all set up for CampNaNo 2017

And so me and Alaric are signed up for one of the Nation Novel Writing Months add ons... CampNaNo. This used to be Script Frenzy and is where I'd work on my comic book/graphic novel stuff. Pretty much I still keep it as a Screnzy and work on my graphic novels and Al's role playing game. There is also a poem a day writing challenge NaPoWriMo in April so I bung things up on the WoPo site and the FB page and things to help others. I myself take it as a time to look over what I am doing with my poetry and spend a little time each day on it.

Catapault pencils for the Stubby Writing Challenge 2017

Both girls are doing their own CampNaNo - but me and Jean are having a writing race - known as The Stubby Challenge!!! This is how I did my first actual written and not voice to text stuff after the head bang (I think but to be honest it's all a little foggy back there!). It doesn't involve screens and I can write as big as I like and Jean loves it and... it works - though obviously it means that at some point there is going to have to be a lot of typing up!

The way it works is that we find funky pencils - this time it is catapaults to go with the camp them, last year I think it was dolphins and bats?

We have the ream of paper and our pencils and we write! Then when you are scratching the paper with wood you sharpen the pencil - the first to end up with a pencil stub wins! We even have a special Octarine pencil sharpener from the Discworld Emporium!

Jean Working on her Foodverse CampNano 2017

I'm slowely lurching my way through a novelisation of my first comic book script about how The Punk ends up being apparently immortal. It is slow progress but that is fine 🙂 Jean is working on her project from last year too - The FoodVerse - we typing up and editing chapter one An Apple Pavlova, now it is about about carrots.

Mary on the other hand is dictating a set of stories about a rainbow jungle and the sparkly creatures within 🙂 When the rest of us are working on our books she sits and colours in the picture she has chosen for the front cover. Interestingly they are quiet Roald Dahl in nature.

Mary Colouring in her Front Cover Campnano 2017

Of course I am still managing some typing so am kind of working on multiple projects - this means that I have to have check lists to keep myself on track especially as the time I can concentrate for is actually so small - I can't do hyper focus and I can't fall through the page - my brain just shuts down and I fall asleep! But I think I am getting there and producing good stuff.

So yeah CampNaNo is go and I am prodding people to write and create!

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