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Wednesday 24th November 2021


A bit under the weather still, but still impossible to know if it’s a reaction to the Booster or just the relentless erosion of parenthood. After a Zoom meeting about a new podcast project I realised I was too out of it to work and I went to bed mid-afternoon and watched  Countdown and had a nap. 
In case you were worrying that I wasn’t middle-aged.
A contestant got three 9 letter words which is pretty impressive, but I got one of them, even though I wasn’t well, so suck on that Richard Whiteley (who is looking really weird these days).
We’re allowing Phoebe to stay up a bit later some evenings now, as she’s nearly seven, and we’re watching Bake Off with her. We’re way back on episode 3, so no spoilers please (as if it’s possible to avoid them), but it’s lovely to watch TV with our daughter. She’s engaged and excited. She says she’ll be really upset if the contestant who looks like her grandma gets knocked out, but I know it’s bad news coming up as Bobby Robson will be going out in the next couple of weeks for sure. 
She gets the jokes (she thinks Noel Fielding is the funniest) and is swept up in the contest, but still new enough to it all to be surprised and come up with her own good ideas - she wondered if maybe one of the judges might be ejected this week - but she also appreciates that it’s a treat to be able to stay up after bed time with the adults. We should all enjoy this while we can. I am not that into Bake Off, but I am very much into watching my daughter watching it. It’s like a home version of Gogglebox.
At dinner she’d told me that she had heard a story that was every parent’s worst nightmare (and I loved the dramatic introduction) - a child who had given out all her details on line to strangers, told in jaw dropping detail and awe at her stupidity. Which is great news. Because it means she knows not to do those things, so hats off to the school for imparting this scenario so successfully. But I loved that “parent’s worst nightmare” bit (to be honest I had thought of quite a few worse nightmares before she got to the story, but the online stuff was a feasible starting point for most of them). Our six year olds have to be so smart and switched on and it’s a tightrope walk to give them the info they need without letting them know the details. 
Such a privilege to watch these little babies turn into autonomous humans, even if it’s terrifying to think of how little we can protect them from the world. But I will throw all I have into protecting them from the world. 

I don’t know what I was doing 19 years ago today. But I can tell you what I was doing 19 years ago tomorrow - and then to some extent for every single day from then until now. That’s the 19th year of consecutive entries wrapped up. Tomorrow we celebrate the 19th birthday of my blog.  If celebrate is the right word.  Which it isn’t.
But am hoping we're not halfway through yet.

If you want to buy the videos of the (no longer) live streams of the current series of RHLSTP, you have until the end of the month. Then we will be dividing the money between the charities who are going to benefit from your contributions.

And don’t forget the last live RHLSTP of the year is on Monday at the Phoenix. There are some tickets remaining. Margaret Cabourn-Smith and Chris Lynam are the guests. They will be very good value.

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