30 things that make me happy

Daily writing prompt
List 30 things that make you happy.

In no particular order

  1. Our son, who makes me laugh every day.
  2. Our little family.
  3. Kubo, our new dog. In a week he’s already changed how we act as a family, I’m getting out for a walk with him twice a day most days.
  4. Reading, I read two books on Saturday and finished off a third on Sunday.
  5. Leeloo, she is adjusting to having the dog in the house. I love that she sleeps under the covers with me.
  6. Our bed, it’s a Sleeping Duck mattress and frame. We brought a harder side mattress for the husband and a softer side for me. With cotton sheets and an electric blanket, it’s my favourite place to be.
  7. A long, hot bath. Preferably with a book.
  8. Coffee, (was higher up, but thought the better of it)
  9. House plants.
  10. The days beginning to draw out, as we inch towards Spring.
  11. Being able to get washing on the line when it’s not raining.
  12. Candles, nightlights.
  13. The Thermomix, it’s a T31. It was so expensive, I named it Nellie. As an aside, with a lifetime guarantee, I ain’t buying a new fangled one with a chip, so stop emailing me.
  14. My coven *twirls moustaches*
  15. Food in the pantry and a roof over our head.
  16. Open windows and a breeze blowing through the house.
  17. Dinner with family and / or friends.
  18. Laughing till my sides hurt.
  19. Stationery. I have too much, but still like perusing.
  20. Haberdashery shops, UK version – patterns, buttons, sewing supplies, fabric rolls.
  21. Libraries. We must protect them at all costs.
  22. Halloween Decorations.
  23. Going out for breakfast.
  24. The kitchen clean, all the dishes away before we go to bed at night.
  25. Squidging my toes into sand.
  26. The feeling you get when you’ve exercised, hard.
  27. 475 days alcohol free.
  28. Elephants.
  29. Edna Mode.
  30. Honeydew Green or Matcha green tea in the morning; black tea in the afternoon, Assam, Earl Grey, French Earl Grey – I don’t mind.
Picture of a white coffee mug on a rustic table. There's an open journal with text over, saying 'May your coffee always be served with love'.

Daily writing prompt – Nicknames

Daily writing prompt
What’s the story behind your nickname?

Nicknames are an odd thing in Australia; a lot of surnames abbreviated, then have ‘O’ added on. While other surnames are extended with a ‘Y’. Aussie Rules footballers have some hilarious and extraordinary nicknames.

Sometimes you earn a nickname, sometimes they’re bestowed upon you; I love Greg Davies talking about a friend from school called Bagdhad.

You know that I use Emily Eleanor as a nom de plume to honour my Grandmothers. In real life I’m Maddie, short for Madeline. The name most used for me now is an abbreviation of my full name, ‘Mads’. I sign emails with it, people I work with use it, my friends call me it. I can even remember when it was first used, my heart leapt because I had a nice nickname at last. 

I’ve had others, like Flipper, for the amount swimming and the size of my feet, which I hated. You take the piss out of my feet and I still have a hard time with it.  My feet serve me well. I tramp about on them for hours – but they made me an easy target at school for relentless bullying. One well-meaning, but misguided, teacher dragged me out in front of the class when I was 7 or 8, with the shortest person and had us stand next to each other, comparing feet sizes. Hot, fat tears spilling onto my cheeks at the time. (How odd, I can feel the roar of shame as I’m typing this and see the blue carpet in the classroom). I didn’t want to be noticed, I wanted to hide. The teacher made it worse in showing how different we were.

I’ve also been called Sassy, which I thought was OK. Until I was told it was for Sasquatch as I’m ‘too tall for a girl’. In senior school I was taller than some of the teachers. In a world of Teams and Zoom calls, my height often surprises people when they meet me for the first time, it’s 5′ 10″ or 177cm.

Big Foot.

Maddie Man Hands.

Hyena – as I laugh loud and wide.

Another name I earned and worked hard for? Mama. I wear that one with huge pride.

Maybe a nickname is earned for that one thing, that one time, that no-one will let you forget; or it’s an abbreviation of your name. If you’re giving a nickname to someone else – be kind.

Meme - picture of cat with a grumpy face. The caption says, "When your human gives you your 43rd nickname"

What’s your definition of romantic?

Daily writing prompt
What’s your definition of romantic?

This might be not what other people include, but the morning after my c-section for Vasa Previa, and a night of lying flat on my back for transposed shoulder pain (10/10 – do not recommend), I got up and shuffled to the bathroom for a shower.

My husband, who had been worried about me being rushed into major surgery, almost 4 weeks before our due date; then watching me shriek in pain for over an hour the night before; sleep deprived as he was a new Dadda, helped me undress as I sat on a shower chair. Taking off the sexy paper undies and mattress-sized pad filled with what you’d expect after a birth, washed me, washed my hair, gently towelled me off, covered me in moisturiser and got me into fresh PJs.

I shuffled back to bed, filled with love and gratitude.

That was 13 years ago last week, our son who just turned 12 is almost the same height as his Dad now.

I still grin like an idiot when I think about that not-even half hour of time in our lives.

Said baby, just home from hospital and too small for his onesie.
Fluffy cat looking at his human

What movies or TV series have you watched more than five times?

This was the writing prompt when I logged into WordPress tonight to blog more on the ADHD thing. Couldn’t resist this so, buckle up. Noting, this is in no particular order, does not include TV, or books. And is not exhaustive…

Fluffy cat looking at his human
The late great Chief Brody, named for the character in Jaws.
  • Some Like It Hot
  • Jaws
  • Groundhog Day
  • Trading Places
  • Dragnet
  • Ghostbusters
  • The Godfather
  • Close Encounters of the Third Kind
  • Local Hero
  • Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
  • Amadeus
  • Pale Rider
  • Kind Hearts and Coronets
  • Passport to Pimlico
  • The Lavender Hill Mob
  • The Lady Killers
  • Catch Me If You Can
  • You’ve Got Mail
  • That Thing You Do
  • Apollo 13
  • Amelie
  • Die Hard
  • Nikita
  • The Terminator
  • T2
  • Alien
  • Aliens
  • The Matrix
  • Se7en
  • The Abyss
  • Shaun of the Dead
  • Hot Fuzz
  • Sleepless in Seattle
  • A League of Their Own
  • The Money Pit (Tom Hanks version)
  • Elf
  • The Usual Suspects
  • Arrival
  • Interstellar
  • Inception
  • The Godfather Part II
  • Back to the Future
  • Trainspotting
  • Pans Labyrinth
  • Heat
  • LA Confidential
  • The Sting
  • Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid
  • Field of Dreams
  • Cop Land
  • Goodfellas
  • Corrina, Corrina
  • The Shawshank Redemption
  • The Bridge on the River Kwai
  • A Bridge Too Far
  • Gladiator
  • Band of Brothers
  • Saving Private Ryan
  • Cast Away
  • Toy Story – 1, 2 and 3
  • The Forsyte Saga (2002 version)
  • The Madness of King George
  • V for Vendetta
  • The Green Mile
  • Forrest Gump
  • The Philadelphia Story
  • Wizard of Oz
  • Meet Me in St. Louis
  • Easter Parade
  • Mary Poppins
  • A Star is Born, Judy and Gaga versions
  • It’s a Wonderful Life
  • Gentlemen Prefer Blondes
  • Rear Window
  • High Noon
  • Yankee Doodle Dandy (if only for this bit)
  • Fight Club
  • Galaxy Quest
  • The Phantom of The Opera
  • Braveheart
  • Mutiny on the Bounty (Anthony Hopkins / Mel Gibson version)
  • 84 Charing Cross Road
  • 12 Angry Men
  • To Kill a Mocking Bird
  • The General
  • Star Wars IV
  • Star Wars V
  • Star Wars VI
  • Rogue One
  • The Silence of the Lambs
  • The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring
  • The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers
  • The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (including marathoning it three times now)
  • Raiders of the Lost Ark
  • Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade
  • Jurassic Park
  • Pulp Fiction
  • Good Will Hunting
  • The Piano
  • Top Gun
  • Rain Man
  • Beaches
  • Mad Max: Fury Road