Sunday, 12 June 2016

Feminine Financial Planning

I'm ambivalent about advice on investing. On the one hand, I don't want to prop up the markets with my money when I'm reluctantly more and more convinced by Marxist feminist arguments that women are materially oppressed through capitalism. (Rather than articulated as heterodox in discourse, as my postmodern leanings suggest.) 

On the other hand ... I was on my way to teach once, when a bloke came up and asked if he could have the Money section of my FT Weekend. Now at that time, I never read the Money section, automatically assuming it had nothing in it I would be interested in. I focussed on the How To Spend It magazine. (I adore this magazine because it doesn't have things in it I can afford to buy. I can safely browse through it, saying to myself: "Gosh, diamonds are so unfashionable, what a good thing I haven't got many. This is a pretty feather cocktail dress, mmmm - only £1,785.00!") Still, I resented the fact that the guy took one look at me and articulated me as someone not likely to be checking out how her stocks and shares were doing.

Wednesday, 8 June 2016

Duffryn Gardens (and house)

Actually I wanted to go to the beach. It was Piglet who asked if we could go to Duffryn Gardens

When we first started going, about ten years ago, the house and gardens were just at the start of a major restoration programme. It's been great fun to see how they slowly blossom (ho ho!) with the work that's being done to bring them back to their former glories. 

I'm minded to make our trip the subject of a blogpost because the gardens are so family friendly. 

Sunday, 29 November 2015

Good Online Booksellers for Christmas

The other day as I was drinking a coffee and hurriedly knitting up a pair of mittens for a pal for Christmas, I overheard two people at a neighbouring table complaining about Amazon. 

Monday, 9 November 2015

Stretch mark scars

Like many women, I have pale lines - scars left from where my body grew too fast and my skin didn't quite keep up. However, these are not on my tummy from pregnancy. I got my stretch marks during my teenage years. Although I did have a normally healthy diet, from what I can gather I just didn't happen to have the right vitamins at the right moment to keep my skin supple. As Piglet reaches an age where she will start growing, I have been looking into how to help her avoid teenage stretch marks. 

Thursday, 5 November 2015

Handy kitchen appliances

On the latest module I'm teaching, we've got to the topic of the sociology of the home. I am quite excited about this area of social science, as I have lots and lots and LOTS of data about The Home.

(This is one of those bits of the module where I have to be careful to stick to the module materials and not include a lot of interesting ideas from other things I've read and experienced. Although those all provide fascinating insights into domestic life, I can end up putting too many of them into my discussion. Then I don't have a clear argument, whereas if I stick to the carefully selected module materials I can write a much simpler clearer account.)

As an early task, students are asked to take a photo of a labour-saving kitchen appliance and upload it to a Group page.

Tuesday, 23 June 2015

Yayyy! Menopause!

Hormonal warning t-shirts
available from Zazzle.
I have the ultimate secret weapon against Piglet's impending teenage hormonal mood swings. Menopause! Being an older mum, I will be able to out-hormone her.

I had a couple of years to get used to the impending 'Change'. A little while back, I started getting irregular and unusually heavy periods. I sensibly called up the NHS Helpline and went to see my doctor. Medical professionals spoke to me like this: *hushed whisper* "It's your age." ??? "It's the CHANGE!"

Barbie and Ken as Apollo 
and Daphne - available on ebay.
Sheesh, I felt like I was not human any more. As if I was about to metamorphose like some ancient Greek maiden being pursued by randy Gods or evil Fates, turn into a laurel tree or waves on the ocean shore or something. But then I reflected that half of the population goes through this 'Change'. There seem to be a lot of human-looking ladies walking about with elegantly coiffed white hair. I figured it must be survivable.

Sunday, 14 June 2015

The Eternal City

I had a wonderful and surprisingly inexpensive holiday in Rome. I promised a couple of people tips and thought I would share them here.

Going to Rome offers exciting learning opportunities for piglets of Piglet's age (11), as they have usually done the invasion of Britain by Romans in history at school, and will give a cursory glance to splendid examples of renaissance art. (Accompanied by exclamations of prudish horror - "ugh! gross" - if these are nude studies, LOL.)