Friday, January 02, 2009

The History Woman

The thing about blogging is you are writing history. Not the big stuff history, all war and Presidents, but the little stuff history like what resolutions you made last year. I just went to look...
Wifey's resolutions 2008
1*to shout less and be more patient.
2*to revise the blog and make it more whizz bang (this one might take a while).
3*to revise my life and make it more whizz bang (alternatively to get more sleep).

Hmmm. Verdict
1.absolute failure, need you bloody ask
2.absolute failure though did manage the odd podcast and book trailer
3.absolute failure on both whizz bang and sleep counts.

Moving swiftly on.
Wifey's resolutions 2009
1*eat less chocolate. Have bought new diet book. Have not yet read it. Slight problem this one as feel morally obliged to eat my way through the nine selection boxes my children were bought which would certainly rot their teeth if only they were allowed any of the chocolate inside.
2*be more patient.
3*acquire a more positive turn of mind. Engage. Commit. Look on the bright side. Go get (something, not quite sure what.) Abandon negative, depressive side of personality that runs screaming from sport, parties, dinner parties with more than four people round the table, etc.
4*make the blog more of a community, rather than just a read. Not entirely sure what this involves, but basically "let's talk guys".
5*write a book. A made-up book. This may be a toughie, but has to be worth a shot.


Unknown said...

Dear Wife in the North
I think your resolution no.4 is a great one, ie "let's talk guys" and in that spirit, I feel inspired to comment!

I have only just found your blog, having discovered you through December's "Red."

More blog entries please :-)

Best Wishes

Sandra Montgomery said...

Don't resolve to eat less chocolate! No woman can keep that resolution. I bought my diabetic and high cholesterol friend a cookbook called 'The Cardiologist's Wife's Chocolate Too! Diet'. You can have lots of chocolate without the fat or sugar.

I have only one resolution. To fit into the dress I bought for my daughters wedding in February... one size smaller than I am now. Have been going to the gym and in less than a month I have muscles in my arms now. If only I can get rid of the flab hanging below them I will be happy.

Good luck with your resolutions!! Do something nice for yourself at least once a day. That will help with the patience thing. When I learned to do this, I either took a walk around the pond near my house while the kids were in school, or I lay down for half an hour before I started to make dinner with the strict instructions not to be disturbed unless someone was bleeding. Worked for me.


Raph G. Neckmann said...

I think changing no 1 to 'Eat more chocolate' will help to achieve 2 and 3!

Having only recently activated the 'Comments' feature on my blog, I have to say I wish I'd done it sooner, because the interaction with other bloggers has been wonderful. Inspiring, fun, heart-warming and wit-sharpening! Go for it!

Iota said...

How can you say you didn't make your life more whizz bang in 2008? You published a book, for heaven's sake! How much more whizz bang does it get?

Dave said...

I agree with Iota. Publishing a book sounds mega whizz-bang!

I also agree with Sandra. Don't resolve to eat less chocolate. I don't think many men could stick to that either.

Getting a community going in the comments is great. Just try not to lose over 1000 of them like I did. :)

hester said...

I think you have already created a brilliant community and cyberspace is full of people who love engaging with your blog. Happy 2009 (may it be full of whiz bang chocolate!)

Z said...

May I suggest you alter 1 to 'eat better chocolate'? Eating the stuff out of selection boxes is a waste of calories and they are absurdly addictive. If you chucked them out and bought some high-quality chocolate instead, you'd eat it in tiny amounts as it's so rich, you'd enjoy it more and it would be good for you, thus helping you with resolutions 2 and 3.

Mind you, I'm the sort of smug bastard who can eat one square of chocolate. On the other hand, I can't eat half a Mars bar. I have to pig it all. So they aren't allowed in the house.

AlisonK said...

I understand the urge to eat the selection boxes, but would strongly suggest you bin them instead and go with the "eat better chocolate" idea already given. I was brought up with the "you must eat up & not waste food" message and while I appreciate it for GOOD food, it has at the same time played a certain amount of havoc with my outline. My husband's mother, on the other hand, told him "better in the bin than in you" and I think this is probably a better approach for some items. No one will ever know you did this to your kids' selection boxes (provided you don't blog it!)

sunshine said...

I think you are being entirely too hard on yourself. One of the reasons you are such a superior writer is because you are introspective! Being around tons of people with noise and confusion is very tough, because you can't hear your own inner voices! If you attend these things, do it as a favor to someone else -- just don't expect to enjoy it, yourself.

My "older" woman's advice: Do one really generous thing for hubby every day. Do same with each child. I mean those small things that don't take much time, but mean so much to them. Do only those things, workwise, that cannot be put off till tomorrow.

Then ---- I love Sandra's comment! Spend an hour (taken from the things you are putting off till tomorrow) on yourself. You may need to hide in the far corner of the north forty to do this.

Last -- my salvation -- Ghirardelli Dark 60% cocoa Chocolate chips. 16 of them is only 80 calories. I measure them out in a little dish, and pop one in my mouth as I walk by during the day. (Full disclosure: my dish for today contains more than 16 --)

maddie said...

I think if you have achieved just one of a long list of resolutions then that's good - maybe you have been setting your sights too high and making the list impossible to achieve.
In previous years I have always resolved to either get fit or give up alcohol and failed miserably on both counts.
In 2008 I resolved to get in touch with old friends and be more generous in spirit with new ones. It was the best new year's resolutions I ever made. After 30 years, I have renewed contact with the best friend I had when I was 14 and her comment was 'you've turned into just the sort of person I would like for a friend now'.
I have been so focused on career and family in the past that friendship was back there in the boot of the car, along with the yoga mat and running shoes.
I've always been pretty antisocial on the inside but I have made time to forge some great new friendships and renewed old ones.
Maddie x

Gone said...

Community events, how about Wifey Weekend Tours bring em up on the Friday Afternoon train, turn them out on the beach early morning, bit of lunch, book signing, Wifey themed quiz night etc.
On a serious note you could run a blank "question the author" post allowing your readers to ask questions and you posting answers.

♥ Braja said...

Resolutions are overrated. So is fiction. Eat more chocolate and give us a Wife In The North 2.0 :)

Unknown said...

it's so good to have you back! I have missed you....take care. doesn't that sound strange coming from a complete stranger??

billatbingley said...

Greast to have you back Judith.

Now about those New Year Resolutions - Do like I do, don't make any then you can't break them!

Hope you had a wonderful Christmas, and have a peaceful New Year

wife in the north said...

re chocolate. I know. I do try to eat dark chocolate but then I think it's better with a bit of a chaser like a flake or a turkish delight.
re dave and hester:the thing about "community" is time. Mind you the thing about life is time. It's not that I don't want to engage/respond/chat, it is just finding the time to fit everything in.
re the grocer: re a "live event" Q and A evening - I can't believe there would be any interest in such a thing. Maybe if a really nice "issue" comes along we can all get our teeth into? I'm open to suggestions.
re sunshine: you are now morally obliged to send me a bag. You can't just tell me how yummy they are and leave it at that.

Mimi said...

New year's resolution for 2008: When my time comes, I don't want to arrive on time in a well-preserved body, but rather to skid in late, chocolate in one hand, Martini in the other, saying "Whoa ha, what a ride!" Have done my best to keep that resolution in 2008,will do same for 2009!
And I agree with the good-quality choc and bin the selection boxes (or do you have charity shops up there?) comments, mimi

Z said...

You're a brute. Now I crave dark chocolate with a Flake chaser.

However, you're in luck with the Turkish Delight. If you can track down some Montezuma's dark chocolate with Rose Geranium, it tastes just like Turkish Delight but in high quality.

The Coffee Lady said...

It's a sacrifice we make for our children, saving them from all that sugar.

Expat mum said...

As I posted recently, "Down with Resolutions"; they make everyone anxious and when we look back, as in this post, even more depressed than usual.

Housewifeinthehighlands said...

I hear you about the selection boxes. What kind of parents would we be if we let the kids eat all that junk. At least that's what me and my husband tell ourselves when we tuck in to the selection boxes as our children are asleep in bed at night.

Stinking Billy said...

judith, get writing the book, bonnie lass. It'll be like falling off a log this time around. x

Anonymous said...

Send some of those selection boxes round here - good way to keep to your diet, let me eat the chocolate instead.

CJ xx

A Modern Mother said...

Just finished "Wife in the North" and I look forward to your "made up" novel.

Will you venture from mummy-dom into something else I wonder?

Whatever it is, I'm sure it will be a good read, as is your blog.

Almost American said...

There were podcasts? I suppose that's what I get for following this blog through my RSS feed - I miss out on stuff :-(

I definitely side with the 'eat better chocolate' crowd.

Robyn in Sunny South Africa said...

Hello, Wife in the North - I've serendipitously stumbled across your blog from a comment in one of Pig in the Kitchen's posts, and only just stumbled across her after a google search (yay Google!!) I'm now officially addicted - thank you!

I thought I'd share with you a couple of decisions I made 2 years ago - I tended to be uptight and irritable over mere stupidities. Then I was privileged to listen to a much wiser lady speak in an intimate room, and learned my new 'rules'. Rule #1 If I can change it, do. Rule #2 If I can't change it, it is what it is, LET IT GO!

Life has been easier and warmer and I've been more loving and forgiving. It doesn't cover absolutely everything, but it does nudge me towards being more positive and to hum Monty Python's "Always look on the bright side of life..."

Have a wonderful day, week and year - I'll be popping in on your blog regularly now.


wife in the north said...

re A Modern: havent worked out all the details yet but am interested in those things which affect women's lives
re Robyn: ooh yes, like that. Will try it and see.

Natasha Reddy said...

Well, I hope your 'made-up' book is lieu of my new year's resolution is to remain inspired by your success! I wrote my made-up book last year but it remains unread by the agent I sent it to (yours!), or at least he never deigned to send me a reply or even an acknowledgment (sob). My new year's resolution is to send it to every agent in the Writer's Handbook 2009 I can lay eyes on - and never, ever surrender! Good luck too with the chocolate abstinence. Personally I find it fortifies community is good too, moral support is important for those who write, such a lonely occupation... All the best for the new year! Natasha Reddy

wife in the north said...

re natasha: I've emailed you (and my agent)

Kath McGurl said...

Blog communities are great - I've made some lovely friends first met on blogs and other forums. The great thing is, when you finally meet in the flesh you have so much common ground and shared history to talk about!

Good luck with all the resolutions, but don't bother with the chocolate one. Life's too short.

Iota said...

Re Robyn sunny SA's comment, have you ever heard this little rhyme?

For every problem under the sun
There be a remedy, or there be none.
If there be one, try and find it;
If there be none, never mind it.

Anonymous said...

I have been writing about my resolutions on my blog, also your exciting book made my top five which I also posted.. I thought you were deffo better than Seamus Heaney!

Robyn in Sunny South Africa said...

I like your rhyme, Iota - thanks! I'll print it out and get the kids to memorise it!! Have a wonderful day.

Pig in the Kitchen said...

oooo, wishing you lots of luck with those (may i?) very ambitious resolutions.

like the made up book thing. I wonder about writing one of those too.
Happy new year!
Pig (who is resolving not to really resolve anything, although i might have a half-hearted stab at something, but may wait until end of 2009 to see whether i achieved it before resolving to do it. Whizz bang and go-getting, that's me).

Mya said...

You can't write without chocolate -it's a scientifically proven fact. A made-up book sounds like a very good idea. I'm glad I'm not the only misery-guts pleased to have Christmas and New Year out of the way! Onwards and upwards.

Mya x

Lady Fi said...

Do not say: eat less chocolate! Negative resolutions like this only increase our sense failure.

Anyway, in order to complete your other resolutions, you'll need chocolate, lots of it!

Lady Fi said...

Do not say: eat less chocolate! Negative resolutions like this only increase our sense failure.

Anyway, in order to complete your other resolutions, you'll need chocolate, lots of it!

Lady Fi said...

Ooops - posted my comment twice with a mistake - that should be: sense of failure...

You see what happens when you don't eat enough dark choccie? (But do give up those Flake chasers...)


Waffle said...

Ah, the chocolate; I live in Belgium, home of superlative chocolate but I still can't give up my trash chocolate habits. Born in the shadow of the Rowntrees factor, always enslaved to the KitKat.

Love the idea of more interactivity. My favourite kind of blogging.

family affairs said...

I was horrified when I looked back at my NY's blog post last year because clearly I was much cleverer then because I was talking about sub-prime mortgages and banks and bla bla important stuff and have now depleted most of my brain cells through wine. Did you got away with milk in wine? Brilliant idea - just thought I'd check first, because it would clearly be undrinkable. Lx

Jane said...

Dear, Dear Judith,
I feel you are so close to me and yet so far away.
I have just finished re-reading Wife in the North -I read and loved it very quickly in July then lent it to others and finally got it back last week.
This time it was therapy for me. We left London or should I say 'We moved here' -subtle but different, in 2006 with a then 3 yr old and a month off no. 2 arriving. All those pregnancy hormones conned me into thoughts of more living space inside and out, more time with children, better children, happier husband, better for all... I never thought of London life over -and I still hadn't (despite being miserable a lot of the time and blaming husband/backward 'new' country for all imaginable) -for the 1st month the only company I could rely on was a pensioner in the park, my only identity was R's Mum, The freak that uses the bus or 'The English one' anyway back to London and your amazing book -I too loved columbia rd, our main path was alongside the canal -we lived opp. Shoreditch park. Oh my, Have I wept and it feel good to revisit the memories.

Takes a while doesn't it.

Let 2009/Living begin again.

Enjoying the blog -look forward to the book.
p.s. whizz bang can be overated

Katy said...

I know I'm late in commenting on this, but I just have to say that I read your book that was your blog. I love the way you write and I think you could do an excelent made-up one.