Thursday, March 13, 2008

Mrs T's Birthday Present has finally arrived. Yippee!

Well, I know you’ve all been sitting on the edge of your seats wondering what the Good Mr Turley has bought his beloved for her birthday. Now I’d like to say I was sitting on the edge of my seat too but alas that’s not possible; my bottom is just too big.

Well here it is… the present is… a…. satellite navigation system.

Yes, that’s right; a satellite navigation system. Apparently when we were in the traffic queue there was one on the dashboard of the car in front. Well, you know, I can’t say I noticed as I had my eyes focused on the road, two hands on the wheel and was concentrating on the business of driving at the time. Now, I always pretend to be concentrating when Mr Turley is in the passenger seat because he is a little “jumpy” when I drive. Which is really not fair because I’ve only had the one accident which you may recall was the other week when I reversed into a car. In my defence I have to say it would not have happened had not one car been illegally parked and obstructing my exit. I’m not going to mention the other wing mirror incident as I wasn’t to know the other car had wing mirrors was I? Aren’t they just optional extras?

Of course when Mr T is not in the passenger seat, I frequently drive with just one hand; this is because the other one is either unwrapping a bar of chocolate or winding the window down and yelling “What the hell do you think you’re doing, you’ve got 10 seconds to get out of my way or I’m coming to get you!”

Anyhow, back to the satellite navigation system. Well now I can heave a huge sigh of relief because, at last, I will be able to find my away around town without getting lost. Yes for years and years I have not been able to find Tescos, The Bank, or indeed The School. Indeed, I’ve rarely made it to school for the last twelve years and I’ve just been driving around and around in circles all day. In fact, I’ve been educating the boys in the back of the car whilst I’ve been driving and I can assure you they know the difference between their left and their right and what “Oh God it’s a one way system” means. (Deep shit)

So at last I’ll be able to do all those things that other mothers do! Hurrah! Of course, first I’ll have to work out how the Sat Nav actually works. Obviously I could read the manual but that’s a man thing in isn’t it? Oh how they love to be absorbed in a technical gadget manual for hours and hours until they’ve studied every minute detail. Where’s the fun in that? I like to work it out all by myself. It only took me about any hour yesterday to figure out that;

1. It won’t stick to the dashboard. Nope definitely not. It’s got some suction thingy on the holder with a clasp thingy that moves. But it definitely wouldn’t stick to the dashboard even when I threatened it with a) painful and merciless dissection and b) chewing gum.

2. It will stick to the rear view mirror… but then I couldn’t see anything behind me; probably not a wise idea as I have “delicate” manner of braking.

3. It would stick to the windscreen. For about 30 seconds and then it fell off… about 20 times because I just had to make absolutely sure…

4. It would stick on the panel in front of the speedometer but then I wouldn’t be able to see how fast I was going…..and Mr Turley would be most cross if I got a speed ticket…especially if I got one before him; he keeps trying but they don’t issue many for travelling at 30 MPH.( I’m not saying he’s slow but last time he drove us to town I took a packed lunch.)

Well finally after much huffing, puffing and cursing I managed to work out that if I did just the right thing to the suction thing in a sort of thingy manner you could stick it to glass but definitely not to the dashboard. I’ve now placed it on the driver’s right window in the corner where I can see it easily and it does not obstruct my sight. It does, however, prevent me from winding down the window….

Of course now I’ve got it to stay put I actually have to figure out how to use it… I tried for a while yesterday but then boredom set in so in the end I decided to just press “Home” for the preset destination Mr Turley had set for me. Can anyone tell me why it said “Make a U turn you are on the wrong road to The Channel Tunnel”?

On the subject of Instruction Booklets; why is that men spend hours reading ones for electrical gadgets but when it comes to DIY leaflets and self build furniture like that stuff from IKEA they barely even glanced at it? Have you noticed these leaflets usually give an approximate completion time? For example “This wardrobe will take about 1 hour to build” Strangely enough, 24 hours later he’s still at it and after you’ve discovered he’s lost several screws, broken a panel and you’ve supplied endless cups of coffee, headache tablets and you’ve filed for divorce he realises that maybe he should have the damned instructions…..

(Oh when I say “he” I mean that in a purely generic fashion as Mr Turley is obviously supreme at DIY.)

Sorry, I had a bit of a choking problem for a moment. Well yes, to be fair to Mr T he is quite handy with his screwdriver but unfortunately not so good with blunt instruments.

Now where was I? Ah yes DIY and cars. Well sad news folks, I no longer have my Volvo. The Old Dear was proving vastly uneconomical and had to be replaced by a more practical Ford CMAX with a diesel engine as Mrs Turley actually does a lot of driving (and I suppose one day that satellite navigation system might come in handy.)

Obviously, it’s been a bit of an inconvenience to have my tannoy system and missile launcher remounted but I did strike lucky as the garage mechanic took a fancy to me and fitted a machine gun and some spiky wheel scythes aka James Bond free of charge! So The Blue Volvo has finally been replaced by The CMAX. It has rather a nice ring to it doesn’t it? And guess what?... I’ve already got a little Renault Clio sticker on the side! I feel confident I can out number The Red Baron by the end of the year…

Anyhow friends I must go and tend to my housewifery duties and on a serious note Mrs T has fallen behind with her novel which she must finish this year so if I am not around so much or drop in as frequently as I have done do not be alarmed and I will drop by as often as often as I can…

Toodle pips for now….

© Jane Turley 2008

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Where's Mrs T's Birthday Present?

I’m not sitting on the floor. Hooray! Now you may wonder why I should be celebrating this fact. This is because twice a week this is what I usually do for an hour and a half while Master Benedict has his tennis lessons. Oh, the indignity of it all; a woman of my advanced years forced to sit on the floor because of the overcrowding at the Tennis Centre. But today I have a seat. There was one left, just suitable for a fat bottomed lady who looked like she might be preggers…and that of course was me. Of course since my gut has expanded a number of people have mistakenly thought I am pregnant. The last time I was in the mobile library and the gentleman driver piped up;

“I suppose you’ll be wanting a girl this time.”

“Nope,” I replied. “I’m just fat.”

Now I’m not saying he was embarrassed but it was so hot in the van the sprinkler system came on. I wasn’t embarrassed though; I’ve got used to people looking at my tummy and wondering whether an alien is going to burst forth from my stomach like it did from John Hurt’s.

Anyway I have breaking news… I have new iron! Well, I offered to purchase the new iron for Mr Turley but he opted to buy one himself. Oh how disappointed I was; thwarted in my plans to reinstate a new pink iron.

But can you imagine my utter horror when… Mr Turley brings home a LILAC coloured iron. LILA
C?? What has come over him? Buying himself a lilac iron is just downright worrying. What will he do next? Buy a checked pinafore? Or some oven gloves decorated with daisies? Perhaps some woolly slippers with pink fur and ribbons on? Oh no, no, no! What is happening to the man I married?

Can it be that he is turning into a HOUSEWIFE???

Tonight Readers I am going to check he has not developed man breasts. I hope not or all my worst dreams will be coming true…

Also, despite Mr Turley’s reassurances I AM STILL WAITING FOR BIRTHDAY PRESENT. I’m becoming increasingly despondent. Perhaps the Good Mr Turley doesn’t love me anymore. Perhaps he has a found a slimmer, younger woman with a pert bottom who actually likes cooking. He has assured me he hasn’t (although not for want of trying) and he has given me some hints what my prezzie might be;

1. It's not jewellery. (Blast; my preferred choice after chocolate.)
2. It’s not chocolate. (Oh the absolute rotter; fancy denying me the ultimate pleasure.)
3. It’s not underwear. (Thank goodness, they’re sick of me at the Marks and Spencer’s Returns Counter.)

Now I’ve demanded a PROPER clue and here’s how Mr Turley began our conversation…

“On Saturday when we were coming back from tennis and we were in the traffic queue at the junction by the railway bridge….”

“Yeeessssss?” interrupts Mrs Turley rapidly loosing interest.

“…You could see one then...”

“Lovely darling, I look forward to the high speed train running through the back garden,” replies Mrs Turley.

“It’s not a train.” Flinch of annoyance crosses Mr Turley’s face

“It’s an anorak and a Guide to Train Spotting by B. O. Ring?”


“A pedestrian crossing?” (Mrs Turley is now on a wind-up mission.)


“Traffic lights?”


“Two rubbish bins and a telephone booth?”

“Look, do you want it or not?”

“Depends what it is Mr Turley.”

“I’m not telling you what it is.”

“Well how do I know if I want it or not?”

“I’m sure you’ll love it.”

“It’s a new car! I knew it! I knew it! A Mercedes?”

“It’s not a car.”

“Yes it is!”

“No, it isn’t.”

“Yes, it is!”

“No, it isn’t.”

"Yes, it is!"


“It is a new car, isn’t it?”

“This may well be your last Birthday.”


Well there you go; I still haven’t got a present and I may soon be dead. Humph.

So on what may be my final, final note and continuing on the picture analysis theme. Please give me your reactions to the picture below. Again, please feel free to be as descriptive as you wish.
(By the way I always look as seductive as Nigella when I'm washing the greens; it's my dressing gown that does it.)

I will of course be performing in depth psycho analysis for any of you who care to leave comments.
© Jane Turley 2008

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Irons, Costumes and a load of rubbish.

Now they say things happen in threes… and they do… on Sunday my iron stopped working. Now this is particularly annoying as it is less than a year old. Obviously, I could take it back for a repair or a refund BUT that would mean having to find the receipt. And to be honest I don’t have a chance in hell of finding it because paperwork, filing and general organization are not exactly my forte. (This may come as a surprise to you as I am such an excellent cook and efficient cleaner.) Now ironing is in fact Mr Turley’s domain; he positively loves it which is why I had bought a pink iron; it gave me much amusement to watch Mr Turley who is a strapping 6 foot 6 inches, ironing his pants with a girlie pink iron in his hands. Now I detest ironing with a fervour that is only matched by my hatred of Delia Smith; so Mr Turley does the majority of the ironing in exchange for “favours.” This is very good exchange; I get to avoid something I dislike in exchange for something a whole lot more pleasurable and Mr Turley gets to iron his shirts just the way he likes them without me complaining of a headache.

Forgetting the iron incident, now that I’ve started on the subject of receipts and paperwork I think I'll have to continue…

Now my lovely postman dropped yet another pile of the usual garbage of bills, circulars, bank statements and adverts for double glazing upon my doormat this morning. Damn him. (There was, however, also a couple of birthday cards so I didn't set the dogs on him as usual because I was feeling generous. )

But I ask you…Doesn’t a Housewife Extraordinaire have enough to do with out attending to these sorry piles of mindless rubbish?

I have enough paperwork already as my three boys are at three different schools; I am inundated with letters informing me that there is yet another fund raising event, school trip or general request for money. WORST of all there is the polite (but with threatening undertones of implied inadequacy) request to make costumes for an entire legion of Roman soldiers out of old loo rolls, some tin foil and (never quite big enough) cereal packets.

The truth is Readers - I would rather take a double barrelled shotgun to my head than manufacture another costume; I’ve been doing it for 12 years and If I never see another Roman soldier or Tudor King again I will be a very happy (albeit dead) woman.

To be fair, I don’t receive that many letters (well relevant letters) via Master Samuel as being of a teenage disposition he never gives them to me until such time as the information has been rendered useless, causing me to miss various meetings, parent’s evenings and generally to look grossly incompetent. (Which as you can imagine is pretty difficult.)

The question is how should one dispose of all this worthless paper rubbish? Here are a number of methods which I find particularly useful over the years;


Lighting a small fire, or indeed a large fire, under Master Samuel’s backside.

This is about the only thing to cause Master Samuel to move at a pace faster than a dead slug. This is in contrast to Master Benedict who is very light-footed (and regrettably light-fingered) and also a budding pyromaniac who will happily set alight any inanimate or animate object.

To this extent I must explain that on a recent outing to football practice with Master Jacob, Master Samuel did not perform his childcare duties with due care and attention and Mr Turley was unexpectantly later than norm. Whereupon on my return from Footie, I found Master Benedict had put the catch on the door and eventually when he did open it informed me he was "making a fire" and indeed he was... he had stoked up the stove with coal and paper and various household accoutrements which were burning nicely away and to which he was adding more articles... Needless to say Master Samuel, who was upstairs with his headphones on wooing his Xbox360, did receive the full wrath of my anger which is a rare, yet hideously unpleasant occurrence.

I m
ust also explain that on the weekend Master Benedict “acquired” from a friend’s house a squeaky mouse to which he had become more attached than a little boy should decently be to a small furry creature. Now when Mr Turley discovered the squeaky mouse hidden in Master Benedict’s football kit he was most cross and lectured Master Benedict till the little lad looked positively crestfallen at which time he was duly sent to his bedroom under instruction that he may not exit until such time as George Bush had passed the MENSA test.

A short while later we heard the click of the front door and discovered Master Benedict in the process of running away. He had bundled up his school fleece, football kit, pyjamas and his wallet into the cat blanket that is on his bed and having tossed it over his shoulder in the manner of Dick Whittington was heading down the driveway to seek a new life full of squeaky mice at the local park.

Needless to say Mr Turley was most remorseful and duly explained to Master Benedict that he loved Master Benedict very much but stealing a squeaky mouse was not permissible in the Turley Household, (irrespective of the undeniable attraction of the fluffy vermin.)

Hmm…I seem to have got distracted from the subject of Master Samuel… probably just as well other than to say setting his pants alight is a good method of raising him from his bed after midday and has the added bonus of extinguishing any unfavourable odours. (It is certainly preferable to extracting his pants from underneath his bed with barbecue tongs…although I believe they are shortly to be inventoried at Porton Down as a new and deadly weapon of mass destruction.)


Making a selection of high performance paper planes.

I am proud to announce that in the Annual Paper Plane Race at School my planes out perform any rival by a staggering 15 metres. I am particularly fond of my Stealth Fighter Plane which last year crept slyly up behind Dear Johnny’s mother pranging her in the back of her head causing her to drop Dear Johnny’s plane into the her cup of highly nutritious but unpleasant vomit-coloured carrot juice. (Excellent.) It’s not that I’m competitive but I’m rather partial to winning (provided I don’t have to partake of any vigorous movement of limbs which as I have already indicated can have serious environmental consequences.) However in view of the fact that I do not participate in The Parent’s Race at Sports Day I must point out that I am extraordinarily clever at school quizzes; particularly ones which require knowledge of completely banal and useless subjects such as granny knickers, hair loss and weight gain…when I can score an impressive 10/10. (Plus I’m pretty hot on answering bonus questions which are usually relating to football; to which my answer is always “Balls.”)

Anyhow, I can heartily recommend Sunday supplements for the manufacture of planes as their glossy nature improves aerodynamic performance.


Recycle them into luxury toilet paper.

This a “Must Do” activity. You will save yourself a heap of cash and the inconvenience of transporting large packs home from the shops. Follow my tried and tested formula;

1. Shred the paper and then dampen it down with water and a small amount of flour to ensure cohesion.

2. Kneed for five minutes and then form into a sausage shape.

3. Using your pasta machine (lasagne style) or a mangle (if you’ve been lucky enough to inherit one from granny) feed the sausage carefully through it and leave the resulting paper to dry.

4. Finally, congratulate yourself that you have produced organic, environmentally friendly luxury toilet paper. One tip though; do not use prior to using a communal changing room – you may receive distasteful stares due to residual grey streaks and the adhesive nature of the paper may mean that some of it may have stuck to your arse.

Making a costume for yet another school dressing up day.

The least attractive option and the less said about this the better. Only to say that today was…


Have they no pity?

Do they not know it’s my birthday?

When will I be released from the torment?

I calculate not for at least another 4 years… when I will have manufactured enough Peter Pans, Tin Men, Robin Hoods, Captain Hooks, etc etc to make me go COMPLETELY and UTTERLY INSANE. (Thereby fulfilling the criteria to become a Member of Parliament and so beginning a lifetime of political incompetency and free lunches in The House of Commons.)

However, today has been my easiest dressing up day to date; it was “Dress up as your favourite bo
ok character day” and Master Benedict decided he wanted to be Legolas. Now just in case you’re not familiar with Legolas; he is the blond haired elf in The Lord of the Rings who is the expert marksman. Now there’s not too much sticking and gluing involved in this one which is excellent. But it did leave me with a dilemma; Master Benedict has only just turned 7 so it’s fairly obvious that he hasn’t read The Lord of the Rings. It also implies that he seen he film… which is a 12 certificate. Now I’m not saying he has seen it but last night he garrotted the cat because he mistook for an Orc. Shame… but you know those vet bills were getting a little expensive….

So did I let him go as Legolas which required but a few minutes of preparation and some weapons (obligatory) or did I manufacture another vile costume of cereal boxes, crepe paper and pasta?

Answer; he went as Legolas and I’m expecting social services at any minute.

Now before I sign off for the evening I just want to say that I’ve become addicted to Pentad’s Simplifying Life and Love blog. (Still can’t do that link thing but it’s on my list of favourites.) I strongly believe Tamera is trying to entice me into revealing all about myself and using me as a case study for her next book which I believe will be entitled “Simplifying Housework and Accompanying Madness.” Now one of Tamera’s techniques is to post an image and see what feedback she gets and what crazy mixed up people like myself and Young Master Sy scribe. Anyway, I think this is an excellent technique which I’m going to try myself. Please look at the picture below and let me the first thing that comes into your head. You can be as explicit as you like. Thank you.

Now where's Mr Turley?

© Jane Turley 2008

General Inane Waffle.

Now before I get down to the very serious matter of proper blogging later in the day I must first recount a little true story from yesterday morning....

Mrs Turley is waking up slowly in her cosy bed ready for yet another arduous day at the kitchen sink when she feels Mr Turley's hand upon her arse and his dulcet tones in her ear....

"Happy Birthday Mrs T."


Mrs Turley replies;

"It's my Birthday TOMORROW."


Hand slowly withdraws.

Now really... wouldn't you expect The Veritable Mr Turley to remember after nearly 17 years of marriage that my birthday is the 6th and not the 5th? Still, he has informed me this morning "that a package will be arriving sometime in the next three or four days."

Hmm... there's nothing like forward planning is there? It had better be a good prezzie or he'll be in deep trouble I can tell you ( possibly involving a damp tea towel.)

Now how old is Mrs T today? To help you work it out here's a mathematical formula;

100-60 + ½ + 79⅓ -153% x [a- b+ 7 kilos Galaxy chocolate – half a banana + ab- c} x 3c -78% - ½ x ⅔ +
⅛ - ⅝ x 61⅞ -⅓ ≠ <100>12.5 % √ 40 ∑ 11≤ 2234 ≥ ↕ 56 x ½ sausage ♂ + 3 children ∑ 1 husband x sheer bloody exhaustion x 44.7≈ 2 = ♂ 67⅓ x 0.0000001 x 3.14 = ??

Answers on a sympathy card please.

Now I'm feeling really daring and for the first time known to man I am posting a piccy of myself from about 2 years ago. I would like to point out that;

1) I was having a bad hair day.

2) I was having a bad face day.

3) I'd forgotten to put my anti wrinkle cream
on for the 2000 consecutive day. Damn.

4) The strained look on my face was due to the constipation I had been suffering from at the time.

5) The sun was also in my eyes which accounts for the excessive amount of wrinkles in that area.

6) I've since had my teeth whitened; it didn't work.

7) I can't remember why I was bending over but as Pierce Brosnan is not standing behind me I don't think it was for any interesting reason.

8)That is my "Sporty Spice" look. Usually I'm a model of sophistication and glamour with a touch of Joan Collins thrown in for good measure.

9) It's possible I may have put on a kilo or two since this piccy was taken; the sun was still shining then... now we regularly suffer from eclipses.

10) I'm saving up for plastic surgery and liposuction and any contributions will be greatly received. Please address cheques to the " Save The Whale Foundation."

Now before I toodle off to read some blogs and scribe another of mine own later I just wanted to give you an update on Luke Warmwater. Well, he is a particularly fine young washing machine with smooth contours which are silken to touch and most appealing to the eye. He washes perfectly and his spinning is smooth and quiet. In fact… rather too quiet. My dearly beloved Zanussi, being of an archaic and wonky disposition, did vibrate somewhat violently when on the spin cycle. Why it jumped so fervently across the room that it was often necessary for me to sit upon it in order to pacify it. Indeed it was sometimes necessary for me to sit upon my Zanussi for a whole hour at a time…….

Oh yes one more thing, my friend Fordfocusmum (one of these days I'll work out how to do that link thingy) who has the gross misfortune of standing at the school gates with me has drawn to my attention that a comment she left on my blog did not appear last week. Fordfocusmum was most perturbed and wondered what had happened. Had her remark that I was a fat, lazy, good for nothing, self indulgent egotist with pompous aspirations of bionic supremacy, a desire to have my own chocolate factory, take over the world and introduce compulsory silly hats and red noses for all politicians offended me in some way? The answer is no! It takes a lot to offend Mrs Turley who is of a jovial disposition and so if any of you Dear Readers also suffered the same experience Mrs Turley assures you it must have been a technical hitch (or possibly gross incompetency on my part.) So please keep commenting as MrsTurley loves to chat and be distracted from all those boring household chores....

© Jane Turley 2008

My Nominees for the US and UK Elections and Other Waffle

It's the early hours of the morning, and I have had a large gin... Late-night alcohol is always a good recipe for writing gibberish. And...