Memorable moments from 2017

Firstly, I’d like to thank you all from the bottom of my heart for continuing to follow my blog. I only started it as a way of documenting stuff and subsequently to use as a tool to remember the nightmare battle we had with our council. Having successfully (and I still don’t know how we did it) achieved an amazing school place for Jude, I now see that my blog is changing. Well, actually maybe not the blog itself but most definitely me as a person and therefore the content won’t solely be me whinging on about the hell that is battling for what Jude needs. New year, new situations.


So in conclusion to a very varied year…I give you (some of) my memorable moments from the past twelve months.

  1.  We learnt that in this house, the word “people” can mean something other than human beings. In January this year, Jude embarked on one of his weirdest habits yet. Paper ripping and flicking! He refers to them as his people and it isn’t uncommon to not even be able to see his floor for “people.” Thankfully, Elsa never did notice that Jude had swiped and destroyed a couple of her favourite books but needless to say all books and paperwork is banned from a ten metre radius of the boys room. The funny thing is, even Jude laughs at his people making habit!

What a tip. Jude post melt-down surrounded by his people!



2) This year it was confirmed that Elsa is an awesome athlete. Medals, medals everywhere! Gold for an inter-school gymnastics competition, a few team running wins plus the discovery that she’s a very talented cross country runner. First club race next weekend which is pretty exciting. I guess having that much determination and stubbornness can have some benefits. She may be a complete pain in the butt, pre-teen nightmare half the time but at least she might become a world champion runner and make us loads of money, right?! Let’s hope…


3) This year, our little tornado Emmeline grew into a real little girl. She also discovered a love of danger and all things crazy. We haven’t worked out yet if she’s going to be a comedian, a stunt woman or a street fighter. One broken arm and a battle with a barbecue led to two hospital visits but she’s a trooper and it certainly didn’t phase her…not sure if that’s brave or worrying!.


Pyjamas, a new swimming costume and hat. Nice look I reckon.


Nothing to add to this picture…


Just in case those noodles are toxic…goggles.


Yes, she’s cycling with a broken arm…wouldn’t listen to me of course.



4) I’d be yelled at if I didn’t mention our wedding. It seems so long ago but six months ago, Joe and I got married! I still haven’t changed my surname (shhh, it’s not gonna happen) but we had an awesome time…very informal and fun with a bbq pub garden reception.


Possibly my favourite wedding photo ever. It still makes me laugh!


The moment one of my bridesmaids realised all the attention wasn’t going to be on her for once so she needed rescuing by Granny…




5) Again and probably most notable for this blog is the memory of Jude moving to his wonderful new school. Back at Easter time he moved to a local school that turned out to be a disaster. They treated him like he was the most badly behaved child in the world and because Jude has amazing intuition, he realised how they felt and instinctively played up to it. It’s amazing what a bit of kindness can do. Fast forward to mid-September and Jude is now surrounded by love, affection and positivity. We couldn’t ask for a better bunch of influences and even just in this short space of time the difference in Jude and his entire demeanour is incredible. I can’t thank them enough for what they have done for Jude and our whole family.


This picture was taken outside his school when I was dropping him off for the first time. Such mixed emotions, the most over-riding at this moment in time was relief. Relief that finally I had the support I needed for Jude. He had been off school for two months and I was literally dying on my feet. Once relief subsided the sadness, guilt and overthinking began. And so I’m stuck.



6) On a personal level, I’m incredibly proud that this year I managed to write, and with the help of a publishing house, market my first book. Off the back of this, I’ve been asked to do a few radio and newspaper interviews which was amazing. I love to stretch myself and expand out of my comfort zone and this has certainly helped with this goal. Sitting in a radio studio with a big microphone in front of my face was terrifying.

Here’s my author shot – I chose it as a) you can’t see any wrinkles and b) I look vaguely intelligent.


Book is available on Amazon and the online Guardian Bookshop – just search “Living with a Jude.”



7) Back in April, I lost my mind and agreed to go camping. Ok not camping as such but glamping. I thought it would be more Alice-friendly thanks to the massive tent, gorgeous double bed, log burner and lovely bathroom. It was a great little weekend and definitely a good one for Jude which I’d like to replicate sometime this coming year.

We stayed at at the Jollydays glamping site in Yorkshire. It was blimmin freezing but the children absolutely loved the freedom that comes with sleeping in a forest for three nights.





8) And two less Jude-friendly holidays for the girls, Joe and I. I’m so glad we went away but naturally, I’m incredibly sad that Jude couldn’t come with us. It’s moments like these that I’m reminded how detached Jude needs to be at times from the fast pace of the world.


I so want to find this guy and give him a copy of the now infamous Emmeline shot. Oh how she loved the subway and sitting next to complete strangers. It was so funny how mad she got if we dared to sit too close to her.





And France back in July…


There are so many more memories but I’m going to leave it there for now. I may add to it.

And on we move to another year. I can only wonder what experiences will be given to us and what challenges we’ll need to overcome. Everyone’s lives are full of complexities and it says a lot about you as an individual how you choose to cope with them.


And Jude…what will another year at his school give to our wee man? And will anyone be able to convince him to ever get his hair cugt?!


How has your 2017 been and what are you looking forward to this new year?



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