Rudolph comes but once a year (thank God)

December 26, 2012 § 14 Comments


I’m not going to write a post about being ill or my bad leg today. No, this post is about my new Rudolph jumper and some memories it has invoked.

My brother, Andrew, whom I love and adore and with whom I shared a difficult and mad 70s childhood, is one of the worlds worst buyers of presents, ever. Some of his presents should go down in history for their tackiness, the teddy bear on a  bike is one that springs to mind (I ended up giving it to the scouts for their jumble sale – isn’t that awful). But I have begged my brother to either let his wife, Bev, buy the presents (she is very good) or give the money to a charity on my behalf, or better still, don’t buy me any presents at all, I really am happy to just see him at Christmas, that is present enough for me (at this suggestion, he said I was being selfish, not allowing him to give me a ‘proper present’).

For several years this worked and Bev bought the presents and all was well. Then this year I woke up on Christmas morning to one of the worst presents anyone could have possibly bought me…a Rudolph jumper….ARGGGGGGGG

Now I know they are ‘in fashion’ but really, I don’t care about that, I actually screamed when I opened the package, then sat, face aghast for several seconds while it sank in, then realised, “Oh God, Andrew has bought the presents this year”.

Now me and my brother have a very close relationship, born out of particularly horrible shared experiences of Christmas. Let me give you an example. We were brought up in a very poor household, by quite old parents. Our mam and dad had a full set of grown up children by the time me and my brother were born and so by the time we were around and wondering if Santa was on his sleigh, they literally couldn’t be bothered. Coupled with that, they were of a generation that had lived through rationing and World War 2, so gift giving was not at the top of their agenda.

One year, our mother actually told little Andrew and Susan that they had a choice this Christmas, “food or presents, which will it be?”. Being sensible children and knowing our mother didn’t have that good a sense of humour, we chose the food –  however, it still turned out to be egg and chips for Christmas lunch that year.

So out of this close relationship I am able to be quite frank and honest with my bother, so I called him up after the shock of Rudolph had worn off and I just had to tell him it was possibly the worst present he’d ever bought me and that is saying something. He got quite upset at this and I did feel a bit guilty, but I held my ground, otherwise god knows what might turn up next year. I said that under no circumstances would I be wearing it when I came round to his for Christmas dinner today and in fact I would only wear it under several other layers of clothes, to keep warm. He continued to be upset and I did feel pangs of guilt about being so honest about Rudolph and his merry nose.

That morning I continued to hum and har over that bloody jumper and as I got ready to go to my brothers for Christmas lunch the guilt took over and before I knew it, I was wearing the jumper and you know what…I think it actually quite suits me.

When I walked into my brothers house, he saw me wearing the jumper and clapped his hands with glee, his big ugly face lighting up, how I love him: My brother is one of the best things about my life.

Oh and you can see in the picture of me and Rudolph above, my moon face from the prednisolone has come down a bit, but its still quite puffy.


Andrew with Bev and Daughter Abbie


A holiday before the holidays

December 23, 2012 § 2 Comments

I’ve just had a little holiday break after my treatment.  You don’t realize how fantastic a holiday is and how much you need it until you take it !!! Even though the last few months have not involved much hard work, the ability to just get away and change the routine is itself refreshingly therapeutic.  While of course not much happens when you are  unwell, I never felt quite comfortable  doing nothing – not being pre-occupied with something ‘meaningful’.  For some reason being on holiday gives you permission to escape from all the things you usually worry about.  If nothing else – this is why holidays are a MUST !!!!  Let’s face it, the worries will be waiting when you get back (as I have found out all too quickly).  We really need to stop being so hard on ourselves.

Anyway my list of the ten best things about holidays:

  1. Eating fresh fish and chips
  2. Being anonymous
  3. You can’t get an internet connection
  4. It doesn’t matter what the weather is – you can relax whatever happens
  5. Reading the papers – from front to back over more than one day
  6. Going out for breakfast
  7. Walking along the beach
  8. Slowing down – literally !!!!
  9. Going to bed late
  10. 10. Not having to clean the house

By the way – am still bald !!!!!


Reward for lost body, missing presumed stolen

September 19, 2012 § 3 Comments

Reward for lost body, chips and possibly also fish, if body still in good condition

Someone stole my body, probably in the night, while I slept, sometime last December and I want it back.

I noticed that around this time, this ‘new’ rather poor substitute was showing a funny rash on my upper torso, face and hands and then finally gave up the ghost around last April.

Im willing to offer a reward of a bag of chips and I’m negotiable on the fish, as long as the body is returned in good condition without any ‘changes’ or additional ‘bits’

You can have this rubbish one in return too, or I’ll arrange for it to be picked up and dumped in the nearest recycling place.

Please, I need the old one back, this one is REALLY getting on my nerves now.

Blooming ‘eck, that plate of fish and chips is making me hungry!

Mr Potato Head – That’s Me !!!!

September 18, 2012 § 1 Comment

My Daughter endearingly called me Mr Potato Head tonight !!!!  I thought she summed it up pretty well !!!

Under the circumstances however, Mrs Potato Head would be more accurate.

Me and my big fat arse

September 8, 2012 § 18 Comments

An ‘Arse’ in Yorkshire, England, as seen on google maps

Before I start this post, I think I best create a mini glossary, as the writings herein will contain words that most, non British people will simply not understand:

Arse: The thing you sit on, also known vicariously as (in English, please insert other language versions as appropriate) posterior, bottom, bum and in North America…’fanny’. Note… Americans, some advise, never use the word ‘fanny’ when in the UK to describe an arse, because it means something completely different!

Knickers: Under garments worn by women to cover their arse

So there I was just finished showering and I tried to pull my knickers on and they didn’t fit me! My ginormous fat arse rejected them. It may be time for a pair of elasticated ‘granny knickers’.


I can put up with the pain, cope with the exhaustion, ignore the rash, deal with the blurred vision and so on, but putting on weight…nooooooo!!!!!!!!

It’s those damned steroids again. I’ve put on at least 14Lbs (a stone, or 6.35 kilos) in weight in the last month and I’m now at the point where I’m too scared to go on the scales, so who knows how much I’ve really put on.

Thing is, I’ve always made sure I’ve stayed around the same size. I’m an average female, so my weight does fluctuate, but only a little. This, however, is the heaviest I’ve ever been in my life and I do not like it, not at all.

I love clothes. I love them so much, it’s a hobby and a passion. I’ve got 2 wardrobes full of clothes and an overflow wardrobe and a rail with my oldest (true vintage now) items.

I love to wear them, touch them, have them. I love the fabric, I love the design. Now hardly any of them fit me and I’m extremely upset about it.

But I don’t want to go out and buy new clothes, because I feel fat and it just puts me off. My belly sits there looking up at me and laughing. My double chin, on my steroid face hangs down, mockingly. It’s horrible, this disease has taken my strength and now it’s removed my clothes (metaphorically…).

However, looking on the bright side, I could give Kim Kardashian a run for her money in the booty department and my swollen face does mean I have no wrinkles at all. So it’s not all bad.

Hmm in fact thinking about it, I prefer to think of myself as steroid induced bootylicious.

P.S. Sightings of my arse from space are grossly exaggerated!

Beeeeeeeeeepppppppp: Normal transmission will resume soon

September 5, 2012 § 5 Comments

Super cute dog

Me and Suz are having a bad week, normal service will resume sometime soon, when life stops being a bitch.

Awwww but how cute it that dog (makes me feel a bit better already).

Tara THANKYOU! For making laughter the best medicine

August 28, 2012 § 17 Comments


Today, I awoke to find a large, soft, round swelling, just above my clavicle. It scared the bejesus out of me, I can tell you. I just thought, oh no, dear god what is this now.

Anyway, I was quite upset and down about it. I made an appointment to see a doctor this afternoon to get it checked out. Just to make sure I was suitably stressed and worried, I did some internet research, looking for possible connections between the drugs I’m on (methotrexate and prednisolone) and swellings in that area. All I found was that is was either, an infection, hypothyroidism, or a tumour: I opted for the infection as my problem of choice.

Anyway, suitably worried I went to the doctors and waited in the very quiet, British waiting room.

A bit of background… Brits are, by nature, a quiet and conservative lot (in public anyway, I can’t vouch for that behind closed doors): Laughing out loud in public places is considered treason and punishable by death – her majesty herself carrying out the beheading*.

Anyway, there I was worried frown lines on my brow and I texted my good friend Tara to describe what I had and for some tea and sympathy.

A total deadpan text was then received by me, from Tara saying:

“Is it possible it’s a marshmallow?”


I tell you, I nearly wet myself laughing and trying to hold the laughter in, as a million sitcom type scenarios played in my mind of me asking the Doctor:

“Doctor, is it possible it’s a marshmallow?”

I’m still laughing now.

I admit, some of you might not get this as it seems a very British joke, as it’s a bit of a surreal situation. But the combination of the stress of this new symptom, with the deathly silence of the waiting room and peoples glum faces and receiving that text was just what the doctor ordered and it cheered me up no end.

So to Tara, for being bloody funny at exactly the right moment – thankyou!

p.s. Tara and her husband have written a brilliant book for new parents called Commando Dad, check it out.

p.p.s. Its likely not a marshmallow, although they are thinking of carrying out a toast test. It is most likely a side effect of the prednisolone, but the GP is talking to my consultant about it tomorrow, so I’ll update you when I know more.

* This is a joke by the way, we stopped beheading people years ago – well, mostly..

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