Luscious is asleep, the baby is asleep, Erin’s happily camped out in front of The Angry Beavers. So:

Christmas Day was a blast. It started early- Luscious went into the living room at quarter to5 to feed Connor, only to find the boys wide awake in front of the cartoons, big grins on their heads. Their reason? “We’re excited”. And it went uphill from there! Everybody loved their presents, there was much playing and mucking about, and in the afternoon we journeyed to Ray & Donna’s place (Lyn’s brother and sister-in-law) for a swim in the pool and super-yummo Christmas nosh. Hey, there are definite advantages to having a brother-in-law who’s a chef by trade πŸ™‚

On the present front, my darling presented me with my 2nd favourite movie of all time, Name of The Rose, on DVD (Having already got me my favourite some time ago), we having agreed to call our Albany trip our Chrissie present to each other. And just to prove how sensational my 5 kids are, they gave me a damn cool Dr Karl book, and (gift of gifts!) a 1/10 SCALE POLY RESIN STATUE OF THE TARDIS!!!

They love me πŸ™‚

Right now it has pride of place on top of my desk next to my Beaker-killer Dalek. (There’s a joke behind Beaker, involving my introduction to Lyn’s family, and the nickname Ray and his brothers had for someone. Email me for details πŸ™‚ ) For my birthday I’m hoping to get a 1/10th scale BBC quarry to put them all in…




Luscious, Blake and Cassie went out to Callisto Shampoo’s birthday party last night. I stayed behind: Aiden had worked himself up to a grounding and we still have that whole 7-bodies-6-car seats thing at the moment. He and I had a good time being boys together, eating chocolate, watching soccer, just hanging out and having fun.

Luscious, on the other hand, had the time of her life. It went off, and she came back and told me all about all the people who attended, what they were talking about, the fun they were having. To quote a certain Prince of a certain British principality, my knees turned green and fell off.

Wish I’d gone. Wish Aiden had been better behaved during the day. Ah well. Happy Birthday, Calli. Hope you had a blast.


One of the fabbo things about having a partner who spent much of her adult life in an oppressive religion is that I get to introduce her to stuff I’ve been having fun with for years.

Such as Kinky Friedman.

Remember a while back I mentioned her reaction to hearing The Cramps for the first time? You should have seen her trying not to start singing along with They Ain’t Making Jews Like Jesus Anymore πŸ™‚


A happy moment this morning- the entire family gathered round the table with magic pens, cardboard, a magazine or two, and glue and made an ornament each to hang from the Christmas tree. It was just such a family moment: each of us signing and dating our ornament and planning to dress the tree this evening. It feels like the start of a family tradition: I can see the point, a few years from now, where the tree will be covered in home-made ornaments, each one representing a treasured time together.

Makes me realise that our blended little family is working, despite the attempts of some others to derail us. Which is a nice thought indeed.



Stephen Dedman’s selling stories. Martin Livings is selling stories. Chris Lawson is selling stories, and he only writes one every second Ice Age! (Hi Chris! Write more! πŸ™‚ ) I, on the other hand, haven’t put pen to paper in weeks. (I found out recently that Chris is a fellow They Might Be Giants Fan. Always liked that boy…)

Wanna know my writing tasks this week? I built a strawberry pot hanger, cleaned the patio and shed, and painted a table. With a new baby, a tired partner, a mad toddler, and a house that looks like ground zero which needs to be cleaned up so we can host the family on boxing day, writing has disappeared. I tell people I work from home, but right now it would be more accurate to say I’ve retrenched myself.

Lyn’s determined I’ll get back to it next week, but right now, I don’t see myself ever resuming.


Went Brianmas shopping yesterday. My wallet hurts. Buying presents for 9 kids is not cheap. We got some damn good stuff, though πŸ™‚ We’re gonna make 9 kids well-pleased.


Amongst my many noble attributes is fandom of the about-to-be-relegated-to-the-bloody-Second-Division-ferchrissakes Nottingham Forest, (Hey, how many European Championships have YOU won, Arsenal supporters?), a former European power crippled by years of mis-management and a plc that should stand for ‘pillocks, losers, and cretins’.

My brother Scott and I bought my Dad’s Brianmas present on Ebay last night- a Notts County guernsey. That’s right, my Dad supports a sadder, more pathetic team than Forest! Sometimes, that’s all I have to keep me going…

For the record, my brother supports Man U. Whore! Okay, Luscious supports them too, but she really only supports Ruud Van Nistleroy and Louis Saha’s thighs, that’s different πŸ™‚


I’ve known for years that Arsenal started by borrowing a set of Forest shirts and ripping the arms off, hence their red chest/white arms guernsey of today. What I didn’t know until Dad told me the other day was that the mighty Italian team Juventus started in the same way by borrowing a set of County shirts.

A favourite catch-cry of Forest supporters whenever they play the Gunners is “We want our shirts back.” If I were County, I’d be asking Juventus for the shirts and a couple of Juve’s pet corrupt referees πŸ™‚


Off to Perth Zoo tomorrow for part two of Erin’s birthday, where there will be cake (what did you think they did with all the old animals?) and hotdogs (like, I said…) and funny hats and stuff. I’m really looking forward to the day: I’m a sucker for animals of the Attenborough persuasion, and the zoo is as close as I’m likely to get to many of them. And Erin just loves the place, which is of course why we’re going, so there will be at least 2 of us running around like looneys πŸ™‚


We’re moving house! Coz, you know, being umpty-thousand weeks pregnant and in constant pain, and having a short story collection to pitch and being in constant pain, and all the other stuff Luscious & I have been whining on about in our respective blogs over the last umpty-something weeks just wasn’t enough of a challenge.

Anyway, the tenant moved out, and it’s stupid for us to be renting when we have an empty house, so we’re moving back. Next weekend. No time like the near present and all that.

If you’re not one of the million people we’ve sent an email to with the new address details, and you need them, drop us a line.


We can get cable. Which means I can watch the Premier League again.

Happy little fat man dancing πŸ™‚


Cassie’s in the car the other day, explaining to me why the name of her jewellery-making company is going to be “Rickie”. It’s short for Richter, see, as in Richter Scale, as in “Rickie jewellery will shake your world.”

Which is pretty clever really. At least, I would have thought it was if I could have heard her over my laughing. Such a simple mistake, really, getting Richter and Rictus mixed up.

Rictus scale. And I think visually…

Then this morning, Luscious and I are talking about Christmas, and my only-one-Christmas-out-of-a-religion-that-doesn’t-celebrate-it sweetie is telling me an idea she’s had for something we can put in Cassie’s stocking.

Only she calls it a doggie bag…

Laugh? I nearly wet myself.