Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Here comes the bride

As you may have gathered, I have added some music to this blog. It seemed a good idea at this time but on reflection I think it may become rather tedious - do let me know.

Friday, February 22, 2008

The long-suffering bridesmaid

Emily Perry - who played megastar Dame Edna Everage's silent and much-put-upon bridesmaid Madge Allsop - has taken her final call.
But like the good trouper she was, Emily first notched up her century.
I interviewed Emily in the late 80s (for Radio Times, I think). We met at her home near Crystal Palace, I was introduced to the poodle of the day, and then we went out to a hotel for lunch and a drink.
Out of character Emily had plenty to say and was clearly enjoying her celebrity. And unlike Madge, she was immaculately turned out.
So cheers Emily – every time someone plonks a sticker on my chest I’ll think of you.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Suffer the little children

I'm not sure if arranging a wedding in ten weeks for a much-loved daughter counts as a moving personal experience in the grand scheme of things. But I've sent in a little bit of the blog to be considered for inclusion in a book that's being published to help this charity.
More information can be found at - there's still time to enter as the deadline is Feb 29.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Love is like a butterfly

Yes, I got roses (2 in a mixed bouquet). And chocs (3 little hearts because I’m meant to be on a diet). A pot of that champagne Marmite (he knows I love Marmite). And a bottle of pink champagne (lovely bubbly). But best of all I got a cooked breakfast of mushrooms on toast (my favourite).

I’ve been trying to remember our first Valentine’s Day, but it has been lost in the mists of time. I still have some of the first presents he bought me – a pair of tiny butterfly earrings and a cream butterfly on a silver chain. And I still have some of the first love letters he wrote me. But I’m not sure I could lay my hands on the very first Valentine card and I can’t remember if we went anywhere special – or just stayed in.

I do remember the first time I cooked for him. It was one of those seventies dishes with cream and butter and pork and peppers – and it gave him an upset stomach. No wonder he now does most of the cooking.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Second Thoughts

If you're planning a wedding this year, now may be the perfect time to lay in a stock of champagne.

The supermarkets appear to be competing to see who can offer the best deals.

So never mind Valentine's day, stock up now while you have the chance. It might not be romantic, but listen to your head not your heart.

Valentine thoughts

Forget the commercialism. You don’t have to buy champagne and roses.

But we all need to be reminded at least once a year to make time and space for love and romance. To remember what you saw in each other in the first place. To count your blessings.

This poem - called The Wife's Tale - is a timely reminder

You crept between the cracks in a marriage and made yourself at home.
I was tired, worn down
by years of homework and school holidays.
I had heard his stories many times, no longer listened.
But you said, ‘You have done so many fascinating things.
I can imagine that you are very good at storytelling,
especially at bedtime.’

I saw a man with a thickening waistline, high blood pressure and athlete’s foot.
You saw a dreamer, a poet, a lover,
You saw the man he always thought he would be.
I dashed his dreams with reason’s cold water,
I cut him down to size.
But you said, ‘I have no doubt that you can do anything you want.
You are so clever and I am so proud of you.’

I sat in restaurants in silence because words were traps for the unwary.
But you said, ‘I'm never too busy to spend time talking to you.
You are such an interesting man.’
I turned away in bed, picked up a book, switched off a light.
But you wrote, ‘I cannot wait to see you it is such, such torture.
We need to make love, long passionate love,
with no clocks in the room, please, and no mobile phones.’

I black-binned his clothes, changed the locks, cried with friends.
You said, ‘I thought that no-one had to be aware of my presence for a while.
‘I don’t want to be the scarlet woman.
‘You have to sort things out without me in the equation.’
He did his sums in the guest house bedroom and came home.
You said, ‘Ever felt that somehow you lose all the things you care about?’
Almost, I thought, as he unpacked his bags.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Lucky, lucky, lucky

It was brought home to me yesterday how lucky my husband and I were to have been so closely involved with the daughter’s wedding.

Chatting on the phone to one of my Christmas cards friends – the ones you’ve known for more years than you both care to remember but now only see once in a blue moon – I realised two things:

a) we got off very lightly in terms of the overall cost (my friend said that the daughter had spent more than £2,000 on the dress alone and that the husband had earmarked £30,000 for the event)

b) it was lovely having a chance to do the girly things that I never did for my own wedding – helping to choosing all the little details from the style for the invitations to the colour of the canna lilies and the bride’s dress.

My friend says the bride and groom – who are in their thirties – are organising everything themselves. That’s how it is these days.

After our daughter’s wedding she sent us a lovely card thanking us for making the day so special. Now I feel I should have sent her one – to thank her for giving me the chance to be so much a part of it.