Tuesday, 14 October 2008

How to sell your life on ebay?

Actually, this isn't a topic, it's more of a question. I'm hoping people have slightly better experience of this than mine... I just tend to add something, write a life story of it, and hope someone buys.

And strictly, I'm not selling my life. I'm selling Lal's and G's.

I got a phone call earlier from the Insulation people, telling me that they are starting work tomorrow on our loft. I have 325 years worth of stuff in that loft. Literally. Even though we've only lived here for 6 years. I'm amazed the roof joists have survived this long.

So, I've come to terms with the fact there will be no more babies (unless I can steal one from somewhere) so am selling most of Lal's stuff and whatever G doesn't want. (Not selling all of Lal's stuff as I also decided after G that there would be no more babies and had to spend a fortune buying everything again)

Of course, the lack of a husband does sort of mean no more.. but you know, medical advances.. and there is always another Immaculate Conception to pray for..

So! I need help. How do you sell stuff on ebay? Do I list the 27 almost exactly the same cardigans, size new baby, that he absolutely NEEDED as separate lots? Or do I do them in a bundle? The 18 designer outfits that cost upwards of £30 each (they were cute and I had hormones... don't judge me) single? lots? Frame and keep forever on a wall?

Do you write lots and lots and lots? Or do you keep it simple and succinct?

What is the strangest thing you have sold? I've listed a broken dvd player, empty perfume bottles and net curtains... even an empty glass water bottle that I had for *show* on our dining table (before the dining room became Lal's playroom)

An except from one of my auctions.. and it sold!

Now this one really is nice! It has the guaranteed look that makes people coo over your beautifully dressed baby boy.

It is actually aged 6 months, but Ebay didn't want to let me list it at that. It had to be 3-6m or 6-9m. I would say that it was generously sized, but then I had a tiny baby, For normal sized babies, I suppose it would be for a 6 month old which doesn't help you out at all.

It is a gorgeous velour type fabric, extremely soft. Separate trousers and top and will be perfect for the upcoming autumn days.

Again, I classed it as a *best* outfit, so it didn't get much wear. And it's French. Which would be a non sequitur, but it isn't, because it's French.

It even says " la clef des champs" on it, in beautiful handsewn writing. Which all you French speakers will know, stands for "This parent is falling into my trap and buying a ridiculously priced French outfit because someone somewhere said that French is best." It cost me £85 new. Yes, you did read that right. £85 new. For an outfit that the baby is likely to be sick on (he wasn't - he wouldn't have dared.. £85 *sigh*)

Oh, it's blue and white. And pretty. Well, manly.

Happy Bidding! (which really means, please buy them and don't make me have to keep them. I may have to have another child, just so he can wear it, but then the new baby would be a girl and I'd have to buy more and have more babies... you don't want to subject me to that, now do you?)

Apologies for the frankly appalling picture taking skills. I was good, but then he ate the camera.

I need tales and inspiration people!You see what happens when I'm left on my own?

(And Lal has learnt to say "beach" - he says it a lot, but it doesn't really sound like he's saying beach.. it sounds ruder. There also seems to be something that sounds suspiciously like "pee off." *sigh*


Monday, 13 October 2008

I've had 4 bfp's (big fat positive on a pregnancy test) and have two children. With my dear, darling G, I never got a bfp at all. I never did a pregnancy test. I resolutely buried my head in the sand and refused to consider the idea that I could possibly be pregnant. Sadly, after 4 months and a rapidly burgeoning stomach, I could ignore it no more. 5 months is an ideal length for a pregnancy though.. You can even arrange a proper wedding in time.. Innocent Bad Catholic!

I've had three Yippee's that have turned into miscarriages and an ectopic, but that is over 10 years, so isn't too bad.

The happiest tale is Lal's one. Who said I favour one child over the other?

You have to forgive me, I didn't know any better then, but during an "early pregnancy symptom" search on google, I came across another Parenting forum - I know, traitorous in the extreme.. I just looked and this was my first (and last) post there:

I know some of you have experience in this so.....
I did a test this morning (first responce) and got a faint line - faint but noticeable..... am I pregnant?
Not due period until Wednesday, but am having all sort of symptoms... huge,sore breasts, nausea. I'm having slight niggling cramps as well though so I really don't know what to think! And there are no chemists open until tomorrow to get more tests

You see the naivete? I didn't know any of the terms, didn't know that a line was a line was a line. I just didn't know..

I can still remember that time, so clearly, even though I can't be entirely sure what happened yesterday..

2 days after the deed - Hmm, I feel slightly sick. Could it be? I could be, but then I just ate a 4 pack of chocolate eclairs. POAS - negative

3 days after - Ooh, ohh, ohhhh.. sore breasts. Google says yes, that is a symptom. Except I read that on day 2 so have been prodding at my breasts for the last 22 hours.POAS - negative

4 days after - Sorer breast, more prodding. Does that hurt? Cue squeeze that would rival a mammogram - it did hurt.POAS - negative

5 days after - Sick feeling again, and very tired. Did see dh off to Iraq at some ungodly hour and slept for approx 27 minutes, but no.. it's definitely another symptom.POAS - negative

6 days after - Sickness getting worse, slight tummy cramps, breasts now complaining that they have been squeezed too much and will allow nothing to touch them without actual tears of pain. POAS - negative (become convinced that there is something wrong with the tests and make 10 year old daughter take one.. realise that that isn't something a respectable parent does)

7 days after - POAS... POSITIVE. Immediately go online. Find strangers and announce pregnancy. Apologise to G. Take photos of test stick and email to dh. And email again in case the first one didn't get through.

For the next 14 days, I POAS at least once a day. (Job lot for £3.95 off ebay and a few extras from Tesco) I spent more on pregnancy tests than I did on food that month.

I was 3 weeks and 1 day pregnant when I found out. I swore that I would never again test so early - my two pregnancies since then? I tested ridiculously early then too. I have no patience at all. It's pathetic.

Oh, I should do the soppy stuff too...


My first feelings when I truly believed that I was pregnant? To place my hand on my stomach and leave it there for the next 9 months. Bump needed to know I cared.


Cried and started watching American Tv shows for inspiration for names. Started hoping bump would be a boy named Cory or a girl named Raven. Was over the moon ecstatic.


No idea of his first reaction, he was in Iraq and had to read the email. I'm pretty sure he was pleased and announced the strength of his.. umm.. deposit to a roomful of Squaddies. To me, he just sent an email back, I saved it, I am sad like that!

You daft mare, the picture you attached didn't take. Pregnant already?Thought we were still just practising. Not supposed to happen until Dec. Bloody happy. Sure you'll manage? Can get mum to move in and help. Tell Jogs to make you eat green stuff. 8 months, I'll be home, try to hold on yeah? Got leave for World Cup, so home sometime in July. Am booking tickets. Can you fly? Suppose we could all drive to Germany. James coming back too. He's staying with us. Says congrats on bun. (well done really. V hppy) K

Romantic no? In case you really wanted to know, his mother did NOT stay with me (I'd be writing this from a frozen over hell if she had) He did get to go to the World Cup, and James did stay with us for a week. I didn't receive the message to eat lots of green stuff.


Tuesday, 7 October 2008

The brattiest teen on the planet

I know I said that I would get back into journalling and actually make a proper effort... added three then ran away.. here's why..

The Tale of the Brattiest Teen on the planet.

G is my girl. My beautiful girl who is a pleasure to be around most days. Other days I want to plant her in compost, head first and only get her out when she's 18 and can leave home. She's not had it so easy lately. She witnessed one heck of a row between her father and I and the fallout from that hasn't been easy for any of us to cope with. Least of all her. Sadly, the children haven't been able to see daddy as much as any of us would like, contact has been reduced for a while to a couple of hours on a Saturday, and she doesn't like that. And decided to make me pay. The following is a tale and comedy of errors that she and her friend decided one night on msn. G no longer has msn. Or any sort of life.

Last Tuesday, G didn't come home from school. At all. Nothing. 4.30, no child. 5.30, no child. 6.30, no child. That isn't like her. It was dark, and cold and raining and nothing. I rang all her friends, fortunately she'd forgotten her mobile, and nothing. They'd last seen her walking home, through the park by herself. I'm afraid I did what any self respecting over protective mother would do, and called the police. They came. Looked around the house and garden in case she was hiding somewhere there, took a picture of her to circulate amongst all the other police in the area and called the Dog Unit to search the park.

By 7.30, I was hysterical and convinced that she was dead in a ditch somewhere. K was out looking, my father was driving the streets looking, my brothers were on various trains coming back from London looking, and I was sat with three phones repeatedly dialling three of her friends who hadn't answered the phone when I initially called. Nothing. The child had vanished.

At 9.30, one of the numbers I was calling, I had no idea who, finally was answered. The parent of the girl, after a very long pause, eventually deigned to tell me that she was there, and had been since 4.30. Nice of them to let me know, huh? Or to answer the phone before. 19 missed calls. pfft.

I rang the police, told them where to find her and expected her home within the hour. Again, I was mistaken. Young Miss G decided to inform the police that she was being beaten. Not smacked, or hit once, beaten. Actually beaten. Apparently she had a red mark on her arm. No one thought to question that she hadn't actually been home for me to have given her the red mark... no one considered the possibility that she was ever so slightly scared she'd be in trouble when she came home. Beaten! *sigh*

I reacted well to the accusation I must admit. I *didn't* tell the police that if I was beating her, it'd be best if she went into care then. I *didn't* go straight upstairs and pack every last item she owned into suitcases. No.. I wouldn't do that.

One sleepless night later, and I started to receive the phone calls from Social Services. And visits. The visit went well... epically well. My opening gambit? "Yes, I suppose I do beat her. Isn't it lucky that my parents paid for me to have lessons from the SAS, so i could learn how to beat her without leaving a mark..." and "I don't beat her.. I am using the Deadly Nightshade that's growing in the garden as a nice salad garnish though." Seriously. If anyone has a brainfilter going spare, I'll pay anything. I never know when to shut up.

Social Services have decided that G isn't an abused child - she will be soon though - and that they are able to close the file and just send her back to me.

The police however, still need to interview me regarding the alleged assault. The nice detective lady told me that I have nothing to worry about ( as I wan't anywhere near her to have actually hit her) but I stil need to go down to the station. This is where my watching programmes such as The Bill and Law and Order don't help... an excerpt from my conversation:

"So, when I come to see you, do I need to bring a solicitor? It's only, on The Bill.. if you're innocent and bring one then the police think you're guilty.. and if you're guilty and don't have one then you drop yourself in it. Not that I have anything to drop myself in... but you know, umm.. do I need one?"

She laughed.

"Ok, I'll be there at 10 on Thursday.. now can I bring Lal with me? He's 21 months and will stay still for a little while, or should I have someone look after him?"

Have someone look after him...

"Right.. so does that mean I'm going to be arrested and charged and sent to prison? Oh God.. he doesn't like staying with people overnight. Even when I went to London baby (Yep.. I said London baby, ffs) my parents had to move in here and he was ok, but now has a bit of nappy rash...he's in cloth most of the time, but he reacts badlt to disposables at the moment.. "

She laughed again. I'm not being arrested. I just have to confirm that I don't (yet) beat her.

The end of the story? Are you now picturing G sitting at home, loved, cuddled, all happy in the family again? Cos you'd be wrong.

My father went to collect her - after being the best dad in the world and cleaning my kitchen ceiling.. well that's what you do in an emergency situation, you clean ceilings... - and the family she was staying with wouldn't let her go!! They advised him that G was going to be living there now, and wouldn't be coming home at all.. not where she was in danger of being beaten. The father and brothers of the girl then chased my dad up the road. Poor man, he rang me from the car asking what to do.. my advice? Reverse!

Another police call and G came home. Unrepentant and uncowed. One of her gripes is that I am too old fashioned. The example she gave to the social worker was that I expect to "know where she is, who she's with and when she's coming home.." Far too old fashioned.

The upshot is that she'll be spending a little more time with her dad, a lot less time near any computer and no time at all out of the house.

Oh, and if you ever do have the misfortune to have any sort of involvement with social services, it's not the best idea to tell that when she comes home, you're going to kill her. They don't have a sense of humour about that.

The last thing Gordon the SW said to me, "Right.. so now we have a cunning plan as to where we go from here..." I tried so hard to stop myself, I pinched my thigh, I tried zipping my mouth closed, I tried.. but I failed... I responded with "A plan that is as cunning as a fox who has just been made Professor of Cunning at Oxford University?" Damn that Blackadder. And damn my lack of brain filter.

K (and the child named G who used to have a life but now has a mere existance)