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Blogging so my kids can read about themselves when they are older, as I may still be too traumatised to talk about it.

Perhaps its not quality time that brings us closer - Argus Friday 15th July 2016

Posted Monday 18th July 2016   By Ericka Waller

How much quality time do you spend with your family? According to a recent survey, almost half of British families spend just five hours a week together, and modern life is to blame. Long working hours, housework and social media are stopping us from enjoying valuable family bonding time. What qualifies as quality time? I have three young children. By the time I’ve cleaned up from their dinner, lured them in from the garden, washed the day’s grime away, got them in bedclothes and forced them to practise reading, we are all exhausted, and sick of the sight of one-another.

It's time for us to dig deep, not to duck out - Argus Friday 8th July 2016

Posted Friday 8th July 2016   By Ericka Waller

What a state of flux we are in. Even the weather is blowing hot and cold on us. Our 'Keep calm and carry on' moto seems to have been replaced with 'give up and get out'. Nigel Farage, Roy Hodgson, David Cameron, Boris Johnson, Chris Evans. They've all jumped ship, and the list keeps on growing. In the wise words of Billy Ocean 'When the going gets tough, the tough get going'. Giving up is great, if you can do it. Halfway through giving birth to my first child, I decided I'd had enough. I asked the midwife is she could do it for me. When she refused I turned to my husband. After all, it was his fault I was in the predicament in the first place. Sadly, no-one would take the wheel for me, so I just had to get on with it.

Brighton, thank you for daring to be different - Argus Friday 1st July 2016

Posted Friday 8th July 2016   By Ericka Waller

The only crumb of comfort I can take from the result of the EU referendum is that my beloved Brighton (and Hove actually) voted 70% remain. Eleven years ago, when I left my Home Counties, middle-class enclave for Brighton, people asked me ‘Are you gay?’ If you look up the dictionary definition of the word ‘gay’ it reads: Gay - light-hearted and carefree. [Synon]: Cheerful, merry, glad, happy, bright, bubbly, frolicsome, sprightly, vivacious, buoyant. [informal] ‘gay as a tangerine’ I believe these words describe our City, our hearts, and our hopes. In the general election, we dared to be different. In the EU election, we dared to be different.

Very worst of UK culture was on display at gig - Argus Friday 24th June 2016

Posted Monday 27th June 2016   By Ericka Waller

So last weekend I experienced the very worst of our culture. It started with an eight-hour drive to Manchester on a Friday afternoon. Within five minutes of getting on the M25, a car came as close to my bumper as possible, and started making hand-gestures that were hard to explain to my kids. (“Why is that man pretending to peel the sellotape off a cucumber Mumma?” “Because he is an idiot” “Mumma, you said a bad word. Say sorry”). I assume he wanted me to move into the slow lane, which I couldn’t because there was a lorry in it. A lorry that suddenly pulled out in front of me to over-take another lorry. I flashed my lights at him. He shouted something my children interpreted as “idiot” and so started making cucumber-sellotape peeling gestures at him.

Thank goodness for dogs who make it OK - Argus Friday 17th June 2016

Posted Monday 20th June 2016   By Ericka Waller

So comfort dogs have been sent out to Orlando to help grieving relatives, wounded victims and first-responders involved in the nightclub shooting. I think it’s great that dogs have been given a good press for once. Normally, they only make the papers when someone dies trying to save one, or a child has been bitten. Jane Marsh-Johnson, 'top dog handler' for the Lutheran Church Charity's nationwide comfort dog network, told Daily Mail Online she believes dogs have a quality that humans cannot get from one another.

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