Living Between the Lines

A wry look at family life

  • Living Between the Lines

    12 weeks later…

    Well, here we are, 12 weeks into lockdown and I don’t think anyone has gone crazy yet, not me, at least.What have the past twelve weeks been like for you? I hope you have stayed safe.I have summarised my experience(s) in a short, light hearted, photographic diary. I have deliberately kept it light, these are the good memories…we hear enough bad news as it is! A photographic diary, “Lockdown in a nutshell – the good side” So, lockdown is easing, cautiously, (still no hugs with those gorgeous grandchildren) but beginning to see signs of life and a new normality out there…Today, I began work on another novel, whilst leaving the…

  • Living Between the Lines

    The Sun is Shining

    Thank goodness the sun is shining and has continued to shine for the past few weeks. Spring has truly sprung. So, what are the highpoints of this time spent shutting ourselves away like lepers? I have thought of a few: 1. Hand clapping the amazing NHS every Thursday evening and feeling over emotional and humble throughout and hearing that my 6 year old grandson is so proud to be clapping for his Daddy who is a policeman and his uncle who is a paramedic. 2. Seeing the grandchildren hanging on the gate while I wave from a safe distance and listen to their news. 3. Video calling children and grandchildren…

  • Living Between the Lines,  Mum is the word

    Guardian Angels

    We are at the very beginning of this 12 week (??) stay-at-home—be-extra-careful gig. Already, conspiracy theories abound on the reasons we are all going through this turmoil right now. Any could be true. I won’t add to speculation by dwelling on the cause, be it Alien intervention, God, Greta Thunberg, nature, one of the super powers… because we are in it and despite the sudden panic that sent people rushing to the shops to bag the last rolls of toilet paper and pasta (??) we are managing quite well under the circumstances. For my part, I have a plentiful supply of lollipops, pasta, waffles and fish fingers because my grandchildren…

  • Mum aged 37
    Living Between the Lines,  Mum is the word

    A Mission, A Storm, A Delivery and A Sofa …

    The Mission For the past several months, my mother, now 94 and a half years old, (“I’m nearly 95, Debbie!”) has complained that her sofa has been falling to bits. On our last visit, we had to agree. The cushion covers had torn and were exposing the seat pads which were, themselves, worse for wear. The sofa itself was not in good shape and though the jury is out on exactly how old it was, the general consensus is that it must have been about 25-30 years old. We were staying in the gorgeous, Shire Stables, an absolute gem of a place only a mile or two from my mother…

  • Living Between the Lines,  Puptales

    Growing Golden Gracefully

    It begins when I try to jump into the boot of the Boss man’s car. “Ooh, she won’t make it, she’s getting old!” they chorus as I place front paws on the boot floor and try in vain to haul my back-end upward. However much I scrabble, I cannot make it. Well, I don’t know about getting old, I think the boot is just too high. “She used to get in with ease,” they say, sadly, as I sink to the ground, out of breath from effort and not inclined to repeat the undignified performance. Charlie Brown has leapt up and out again several times at this point. “Easy, see?”…

  • Living Between the Lines,  Tidbits - the written word

    The Ghost Girl at Angel Cottage

    I just love the cover of my revamped novel, The Ghost Girl at Angel Cottage, created by my talented daughter, Zoe, of ZoeBarkerDesign. As Christmas approaches, I just wanted to showcase it here. It is available on Amazon as a paperback and ebook. The Ghost Girl at Angel Cottage is a time slip novel set in 1943, 1963 and 2012. I have tried to be as truthful to the times as I can and researched references to real events before including them. I am, first and foremost, a story-teller and I hope I can entertain you with this multi-layered tale. (Previously published as Once Upon a Christmas Eve.) All that…

  • Living Between the Lines

    Let the Games begin…

    It is that time of year again…Christmas hovers on the horizon and the schools have their Christmas Fairs planned. Once again, I have been ‘volunteered’ to help out. My dependable friend, Lisa, has also been drafted in. Lisa has no children and I am a grandmother, maybe we seem easy prey! I jest, my eldest daughter is working hard on the activities and games room for the event just as she did last year and has turned to us for support. We give it gladly of course. No strong-armed stuff needed. Last year, we were not certain what to expect. My days of helping at school events when my own…

  • Living Between the Lines,  Mum is the word

    Is it me or is it you?

    The phone rang at an unusual hour considering it was my mother at the other end. Our phone calls tend to take place late afternoon unless there is something wrong. So, it was with some trepidation that I picked up the phone this morning saying, “Hello?” “Oh, who am I speaking to? Is that Debbie?” “Yes, are you ok?” “Oh, yes I am fine thank you, not too bad at all but I have two parcels for you…I don’t know what they are of course…” “Oh, that’s odd, I haven’t ordered anything…” (thinks, oh no, not again!) “What sort of parcels?” “I’ll look, just a minute, just got to go…

  • Living Between the Lines,  Puptales

    GroundDog Day

    July 4th -15th 2019 – (thanks to the wonders of CCTV) GroundDog Day The Boss has gone away! 10am Flossie: Well, I don’t know what’s going on but she’s gone, she’s definitely gone. I mean, normally, she comes back quite quickly. “Just going to the shop, won’t be long,” she trills as she grabs the jangly things that she uses to lock the door and start the metal monster. This time I don’t think she said she wouldn’t be long. Maybe she did. No, she definitely didn’t…but maybe she did… Hey, Charlie, did she say she wouldn’t be long? Charlie: Don’t ask me, I’ve been sitting on this toy box…

  • Living Between the Lines,  Tidbits - the written word

    Happy Birthday John!

    Here is another Photograph I found recently, which includes our dog, Sherry: Today 29th June, is John’s birthday. He would have been 58 today. Here is a post I first published in 2011 for World AIDS Day. The photograph I refer to in the text is one I have lodged in my memory but sadly, I do not have a copy, I believe it resides in my mother’s archives. June 1966: The boy in the photograph wears a cowboy hat and carries a toy gun. Feet planted firmly apart, he stands at the opening to a brand new, white tent. The latter is a birthday present. Today he is five-years-old.…