Old Friends.


In this day and age of constant communication, it can be a good and a bad thing when it comes to staying connected and reconnecting with people from your past.        It is more than a few years since I was at school, and yet thanks to the nosiness of myself and others, and with the help of Facebook,  I have re-established friendships that date back as far as infants school.

I openly admit to being useless with the ability of connecting names and faces, but if you also add to the mix the passage of time, and how it has changed us, it has at times taken a while to place a person, let alone recall who they were in my life all that time ago.      Others, it is just like time has stood still.         I lost touch with many of my school friends because I went to college in another town, while they continued at 6th form.      We just drifted into different directions, which I think is what happens.      When you are young, you think your best friends will always be there, and suddenly you turn around and lives have moved one with work, families, and other things that take priorities in your personal world.       Its sad, but true that drifting apart will happen.

I have always been the type of person who likes to get on with people.     It is easier to smile than frown after all.      I therefore had quite a strange mix of people I socialized with during secondary school.        Now some might say that anyone I hung out with had to be a little bit strange, but that’s not really what I mean.     I didn’t have a set group of friends, but instead, I was happy to be an extra to many groups.      That almost sounds sad, but it’s not, and was in fact a great positive, because it meant I had a wide circle.       There were of course people I thought of as better friends than others!

A few of the really good friends from those days, I was so pleased when I “met” again on-line.      It just seem right to have them back in my life.      It was like these important parts of the puzzle that is my life had been found and put back into the picture.       These people know who they are and know how much I value having them there.      Maybe it is the impending half centuries for us that has bonded our pasts again.    As one of these friends said recently, “let the cascade of big birthdays commence!”

The beauty of Facebook is that we are often passive observers of each others lives.   It feels that we are part of what is going on.   For me, now living 500 miles from where I call home, it has been great to be part of it all.       It also means you have people who are a step removed when you need that friend to talk to.

As an autism family, it is always good to have other people who understand to talk to.     I have been amazed by the number of old school chums who have some form of connection with the condition.      It is not just helpful to talk to others about how it is for your familily, but also to see how different parts of the country offer assistance and support.     One of my oldest, dearest friends from way back, has a son on the spectrum, and when M was diagnosed she was a great help and shoulder to us.      I had only seen her a few times since leaving school, and yet when we were down in Basingstoke a few years back, it was the most natural thing to do, when she said to take the boys over.      When we met up, it was as if the missing years hadn’t happened, as we hugged, and laughed.      Hubby and the boys, loved her and her boys instantly.         It was great.       Roll forward a few more years, and we arranged a weekend.    She was coming up to visit with her middle son – she has 3.

D came with me to pick her up, and other than their flight being extremely delayed, we had a good look around the airport.     When they arrived, both her son and mine – as well as everyone else in the airport, must have thought we were mad, as we screamed and hugged each other!!      They stayed at the hotel near where we live, as we have no spare room, and it also meant the boys didn’t have the pressure of them being here totally.

The Saturday morning, I collected them to bring them over for breakfast.   D was fine, not talkative but he at least was in the same room.    M on the other hand was too frightened to come down the stairs – he just couldn’t remember having met them before.    Eventually he came down and went straight to the computer with his headphones on.     After we had eaten, D put on Minecraft and started playing with our junior guest.      M eventually came over to see what they were doing.     It was lovely to see how people who understand the pain strangers in the house cause M were able to allow him to join the proceedings in his time rather than trying to force it.     By the time we went out to visit Dunnator Castle, M was happily chatting away, and happy to go off with his new friends.      We went for ice-cream on the way back, and there was the usual hour queue at Aunty Bettys in Stonehaven, and the boys went down to the beach together while we waited – but they all managed to find their way to us to give their orders!!!     By the evening, M was totally under the spell of my old school friend as we played Uno in teams, and he was paired with her.   The 2 of them were playing silly beggars sat on a bean bag, and it was lovely to see.     Within 12 hours he had gone from frightened creature to the life and soul of the party!!

The next day M wanted to take them to the park to show them one of his favourite places.     He was so upset when part of the winter gardens was closed for refurbishment, so we had to go for pizza!!!

When we dropped them back at the airport, the boys happily high-fived them, and even went as far as a distance hug.     I was sad to see my friend leaving, but so happy that spending time together had been just like old times.

As we drove home, M said he could understand why she had been a life long friend.    There is no greater compliment from him.    D on the other hand told me that he could understand why I was bonkerama having a friend like that!!!    Again a compliment that only D could deliver.

D then asked if we could go down south to visit them some day.    He has since then developed this plan to a visit to London, and started listed where he wanted to go, including at the moment the London Eye, Buckingham Palace, and LEGOLAND!!!     He said if we plan it for 2017, it will give us plenty of time to save up!!

We all had a great  weekend and it made me realise how old friends are still so important in our lives.      We don’t have to see each other every day, for them to have that place in our hearts.

Happy Birthday Mum.


My Mum, is the bane of my life.   She loves to moan.   She enjoys finding fault in the boys.    In fact nothing is good enough for her.   However, she is my Mum and I love her to bits.

Today is her 89th birthday.    She is frail in body but she still has her little grey cells in fairly good working order.



Happy birthday 🎂 old person!

MacMillan Coffee Morning.


Friday was the day of the MacMillan Worlds Biggest Coffee Morning.

It is a charity event that happens every year, and raises money for a sadly over used charity that helps people and their loved ones suffering with cancer.        It has become a huge event and a lot of people get involved, either at work or in their own home.    This year the boys school even decided to observe the event, with children being allowed to dress down and wear something green – the charity colour, for a donation.    I think its great for kids to get involved with charity events, as long as they are used to educate them rather than them being seen as just an excuse not to wear uniform!

I decided it would be a nice idea to have a coffee morning.    I have had a couple in the past, Marie Curie, and Autism Awareness Day, and they have been great fun.       Somebody did say to me, that they thought is was a lovely thing to do, to have these mornings.   I was so embarrassed, as the truth is, I love doing them, as first baking is my thing, and its a great excuse to do it.      Secondly, they are a great excuse to sit down with friends and just natter.   So often a quick “good morning” as we pass in the playground is all we manage and the rest of our communication is done via Facebook.    Nothing though really beats a chinwag over coffee.     The last reason, is far more selfish, and I do feel a little guilty, especially having been told I’m doing a good thing, and that is that I do it to feel important.      Before I became a stay at home Mum, I used to work every hour under the sun, I managed a £1m turnover restaurant, and I think I was pretty good at my job – I am sure some of my staff might disagree!!!   I was both physically and mentally stimulated in my working environment.   Now I am by no means saying what I now do isn’t important – I do wonder if more parents were encouraged to stay at home for a while it might improve many things in society, but its a totally different thing.       When I gave up work to have the kids, Hubby and I talked about the future – as you do, at we decide that while things would be tight, I would stay at home until the kids were in school.        This all changed though when M got his diagnosis, and we had to start to rethink things, and it was cemented that I needed to be about, when D was diagnosed.       Amazing how life changed so quickly, but in a way it was lucky I was about when Old Person became dependant on me.        So, I am not being a good person, by doing these charity things, I am doing it to remember that there is a wider world outside by sometimes suffocating bubble, and if it is helping others in the process then that is a really positive side effect.

D was home at our last coffee morning.   He had been ill a couple of days before, and so the 48 hour rule meant he was home.   His best chum, was also at home, and so the two of them sat and played video games while the Mums gossiped.     They were horrified that I told their teacher what they had been doing that day, but she took it in good spirit because of the 48 hour rule, and they both returned to school the next day.      D however decided then and there that he would make sure he was home for the next one.      I told him it wasn’t going to happen, and when he started coughing as soon as I pulled out my cookery books to plan, I knew he was trying to pull a fast one.      The thing with D is that he can tell the most convincing lies, but to be a good liar you need to be able to keep the pretence going, and his honesty always gets the better of him, and he will tell the truth pretty easily.   I therefore asked him if he was ill or just wanted to be home Friday, and his response was hilarious when he asked how ill he needed to be to get the day off.      He resigned himself to the fact he wouldn’t be home, but made sure he understood what the charity did, for when he asked his friends if they could ask their Mums to come over after school to get cake.

At the last event, I had said come for a couple of hours, and it kind of went on all day, as we gossiped, so this time, I decided that I may as well just say anytime between school run and school run, and we would make pizzas for lunch.

The day before I basically locked myself in the kitchen and got on with it, leaving Hubby to tidy the living room.

I set the table, and I felt quite pleased with my achievements!


D insisted my Dalek cake stand made an appearance.

I really enjoyed the day, with people in and out.     Some stayed all day, other just popped in, as they were on a coffee morning crawl!!     One Mum, who is part of our local additional needs group, and I know to hello, popped in for 10 minutes, and stayed for almost 3 hours!!     Hubby kept the pizzas flowing and we drank too much coffee and ate too much cake.    Everyone left with a box full of goodies to share (or not) with their families.      After school there was a steady stream of kids coming in with their coins to get a cake.      The boys delivered boxes of cakes to friends who were unable to attend.     It was a really good day.

When I opened the collection box, there was £130 raised.      That’s amazing from just having a fun day of gossiping and chilling.      One Mum had given me an envelope from her daughter – who is in Ms class, to put in the box, and she was donating some of her birthday money.     What an amazing little lady.    Thank you to everyone who came and donated.

We just need to decide now what excuse we can use for our next gathering!