Monday, April 11, 2011

Labours Of Love

The wondrous boyfriend Ben turns 18 today, and Bec wanted to bake him a cake.  Actually, she baked him four (but we promised not to talk about the first other three).

"Mu-um, this cream looks a bit runny for the filling..?"

"Um, I believe you're meant to whisk it first."

Looks good, doesn't it?  I'm sure he'll be very impressed, she even made her own lemon butter frosting on top, now that's what I call dedicated!

We've had some glorious weather this past week, and what a welcome it is.  Matt invited a few friends round the shed and they decided to have a BBQ,  what started out at 3pm with eight, finally finished up at midnight with two dozen - and only then because I pulled the plug on the music.  Unfazed, they all piled off to a nightclub (oh, the energy of youth, eh?).  At least they had the good grace to tip the keys to all the cars littering the drive into the pot (on the hall table) before they left.   

Abby keeps inviting stray kids over over without telling me. I had to make yesterday's roast stretch double to feed all the extra bellies.  I trust some of them will find their own way home before Easter. They're dragging the inflatable dinghy towards the river as I type, mutt hot in pursuit - apparently off to build a dam.

"A dam?"



"Why not?"

Fair enough (shrug).   

Al is in London this week, so it falls to me to check out all these places Sam's social worker has urged us to visit.  Sam finishes his life skills course at college this summer, and we are trying to put together a five day week of activities for him.  All his clubs are also set to end once he turns 18, so it's a scary transitional time right now, feeling about to see what's out there for him - that said, we're cautiously optimistic since meeting up with this new guy, he's been able to point us towards some seemingly promising services (fingers crossed).

Spring fever grabbed me by the throat this week, and I've been having a long over-due clear out of our overspilling book-cases.  I brutally threw out all the broken spined, dog-eared and out-dated stuff,  plus I reckoned the local charity shop probably wouldn't thank me for donating that twenty-plus year old A-Z of London, The 1987 Guinness Book of World Records, or that circa 1990 Reader's Digest DIY ten ton tome.  What is it with these relatives who must thrust books the likes of "The complete gardening compost compendium", "How to stop your dog farting in twenty easy steps" or "Vegan for Life!" on you, every bloody time Christmas or a birthday (which for me is thankfully a two for oner, both being on the same day) rolls around?  

Anyways, after ditching all the crap, I kept arguing with myself over what I could bear to part with.  My John Grisham (hardback) collection?  No one else in this house is ever likely to read him.  Yeah, but you could say the same about my complete set of Anne Rule, and no way am I ever tossing her out!  As for Stephen King - ha, do not even go there.

So I chucked out all Alan's books instead. 

How I'm going to transport six full trash bags of books to the Goodwill shop is any one's guess, but at least I feel thoroughly cleansed and virtuous.

Now as if the books weren't traumatic enough, I've decided to tackle my wardrobe next.  And the ovens.  The windows could sore use a wash too.  

Can you see what a bit of sun brings?  And to think, there was me moaning about the winter.. 


Nancy said...

I think my husband's books are sooo boring. :-)

You'll miss all those kids milling about, eating you out of house and home some day.

Jayne said...

Ah Shrinky, I love how inviting your writing is. You bring us right into your loving home (and closets!), with all it's happy business. And it is time to purge. Yes! I'm feeling it too, although I jump from task to task too quickly, and never seem to finish anything.
I love the cake. Looks absolutely yummy! :)

Akelamalu said...

The sun has a lot to answer for!

I sorted through my shoes today and got rid of SO many. :0

365 Attempts (At Life) said...

Me too! I got back into town and scrubbed the cupboards and floors and filled a bag with clothes I never wear. Step two is lugging it out of the house!!

That cake looks delish, btw!

mythopolis said...

What??!!! You tossed out the 1987 Guiness Book of World Records??!!! Oh, shame, Shrinky! Shame! That was the year that 'Objibwe' was listed as the most complex language. I am....speechless. Now that we have lost the Objibwe language, I don't know how I will find the words to go on!

Regarding teen consciousness, it is clearly an oxymoron. They are like, 'guerillas in the mist'....deep...and primitive.

Ms. A said...

I'm certainly glad the sun doesn't have that effect on me! LOL!

li said...

I hate parting with books. Every time I get rid of some, the local library has its book sale and I come home with a shopping bag full for $5. On the bright side, I once found a rare edition I sold for $120. I hope you checked what you got rid of first.;)

Portia said...

I live in Florida and the sun does not have that effect on me. Thank goodness! :)


ummm, that looks very good..
I usually start out with 3 stacks of books, give away keep and maybe give away...never give them away.

Leslie: said...

I only keep books that I consider 'keepers' which I 'might read again one day.' The others are piled up neatly until I have a bag full to take to the "We buy books" store in the village. We have had on again/off again rain and the lawns are still soaking wet, but today the sun broke through and I'm sure hoping it stays to warm and dry up the area! Good luck at your end! :D

Rock Chef said...

Are you suffering budget cuts like we are? It seems that a lot of good things are going to bite the dust around here, many designed for those who need them most :-(

Hilary said...

I need to clear some junk out of here too. The only problem is that it's just about all my own. :/

The cake looks yummy.. even before breakfast.

Putz said...

you know thart you are such a good story teller, let me tell you haow i tell stories to my grands<<><>,.i get them all on my big tripple kingsiaed bed that is wider than it is long<><><><>and then it is my tales of ungi bungi land<><><>they each pick five items, like gaints, lamps, majic carpets, princesses, really anything they can thinkof>>>spoons, glasses etc etc>>the i use those items 5 times five grands, 25 items and i start in a very far land in ungi bungi land lived a princess who was friends with a gaint who like spoons<><><>do you know my kides remember them all these year and all of us on the big bed

WhisperingWriter said...

I hate getting rid of books. It makes me sad. But I have to do it to make room..

secret agent woman said...

Nice job on the heart cake. I also frequently find myself with stray kids to feed. And I currently have several bags of books in the back of the car destined for the used book store.

B.T.Bear (esq.) said...

If he duzzent like that cayke, can I hav it?

TechnoBabe said...

Ben's birthday cake looks so sweet. Not just any ol' cake that's for sure.
James and I read many same authors and when we moved here we packed off many many boxes of books to the local thrift store. Doesn't it feel good to clear out some stuff?

Anonymous said...

CAKE - yummy!

Mushy said...


foam said...

this is too funny .. i was washing windows and dusting yesterday.

Middle Child said...

we are in autumn and I need a spring clean NOW! Could fill some boxes with books and clothes easily

Parabolic Muse said...

ooh, I wish I had some of those books to alter! Or just look at!

i'm kind of odd that way.