Monday, 30 September 2013

Opening of Manic Mondays

It's Monday Already!!


Is it my imagination or is it the case that the better your weekend, the quicker Monday arrives? It's like some cruel twist of nature! If the weekend is rubbish, Monday takes weeks to arrive!

I did have some ideas for Monday treats you could give yourselves, but I'm sure your imagination will work better if I don't tell you what they are. Throw off your duvet, smile before 11.16 today and prove the stats wrong.

I thought it was about time I put up an extract from my book which is due to be published in a week or so with www.candy-jar.co.uk. This is how it begins....


Here is an extract from Manic Mondays
Chapter 1

After twenty minutes of indecision Caz reached the conclusion that she had to go, and if she ran it should be okay. She ought to be back in ten minutes, maximum. It didn’t occur to her there was another option. She wasn’t thinking straight.

Wrapping a bright pink scarf around the neck of her light blue jumper Caz grabbed her keys. She looked down at them to make doubly sure they were the right ones. She might be a prisoner now it had passed eight o’clock, but to not be able to get back in would be a disaster. She carefully closed the front door behind her with a barely perceptible click.

Once outside, Caz tip-toed across the front patio to the gateless gap.  Once on the pavement she began to feel like a criminal. She knew she wasn’t allowed out! She felt like the naughty kid who sneaks a chocolate biscuit from the kitchen tin, hoping no one will notice. Only worse. She could almost touch the gnawing guilt already. She suddenly felt ridiculous, creeping along the darkening city pavement like a war child. Caz broke into a run. Her new blue loafers pounded the pavement kicking aside a coke can, crisp wrappers, and a discarded fish and chip paper amongst the fallen autumn leaves.

The chill of the evening air hit the tears on her cheeks. For a few seconds, Caz was free. She felt exhilarated. Her shoulder length curly brown hair flew out behind her, and Caz ran faster. She hurtled ungainly down the street, and stumbling, nearly caused herself the injury she was trying so hard to avoid. She thought she was doing fine for time, as she arrived at the Spar shop in record speed.

Caz nodded a tense smile to the shopkeeper and headed for the fridge. She dived ahead of a teenager with red spiky hair who was dithering between the butter and Flora, and retrieved two litres of full fat milk, and a bottle of white wine. When Caz got to the counter the spiky teenager had got there before her. Obviously a regular, he was oblivious to her frustration as he began chatting to the shopkeeper in an idle, manner. ‘Been fine today, hasn’t it mate?’ Spiky said. ‘Aye that it has boy. Off anywhere nice tonight? Got a nice girlie to take out?’ The shopkeeper chuckled, and Spiky shuffled in embarrassment. Caz shifted uncomfortably from one foot to the other. ‘Yeah,’ he said with a little laugh, ‘my new girlfriend’. ‘Hey, congratulations lad, you have yourself a nice time.’ Spiky began to peruse the shelves behind the shopkeeper.

Time dragged, vital seconds seemed to last hours, and finally after selecting a packet of Rizla, he paid the bill and moved on. Caz was served. She sprinted, breathless, along the pavement back to the house, arriving at the front door as planned less than ten minutes after she had left.

Quietly easing the key into the lock, her heart thudding, Caz stepped inside, gently closed the door and stood listening. The silence slammed into her. She flopped onto the stairs, and let out a long, relieved breath.

Monday, 23 September 2013


Not just another Manic Monday!

Happy birthday to the eight and a half million UK dwellers who celebrate a birthday today!

Today is a very special Manic Monday for me. Seventeen years ago today I was licking an orange ice lolly in a boiling hot delivery suite in a failed attempt to cool down, and about to take my first foray into motherhood. All plans of homeopathic remedies thrown on the floor, the pethidine kicked in. Today my six foot baby will no doubt lose his wallet again and nearly miss the bus on his way to his A level classes!

When Catherine Blake, the hero of Manic Mondays went to an antenatal class she arrived in a sharp suit, shook the hand of the midwife, and opened her lap top to take notes much to the amusement of the other rotund women in the room, and her own embarrassment. At the end of the class she fell asleep in an exhausted heap and woke up with a crumpled suit and mascara streaking her face. Maybe that was her first taste of the enforced change of parenthood.

Our children arrive with suitcases full of love that tug at our heart strings on a daily basis. I read the other day that if they don’t say they hate you at least once during their childhood, then you are doing a poor job as a parent. Believe me, based on that, I am doing brilliantly!

When my son was about 8 the thought of him leaving home and going to university filled me with panic. Back then he had no intention of going anywhere. He wanted to stay forever. But they train us well these children. Do you really think the trip to PGL (Parents Get Lost) in the last year of primary school is for them? Or the bus that takes them to school alone? Or the trips to France for history? I don’t think so. I think it is part of parent training…. teaching us that we can and will survive without our little people.

In another two years I think I will be ready to deposit my son with his cases at a far flung university, and to Skype his birthday wishes. I do hope, though, that he’ll come home with his bags of dirty washing, and offer me a bit more training for when he finally leaves to make a home of his own.

But please excuse me. I have just heard a cry from upstairs…I’ve got a wallet to find in the next 60 seconds, and then some driving lessons to book!

Have a great day.

Sunday, 15 September 2013


Welcome to another Manic Monday!
Do you remember this?

Catherine Blake (the hero of Manic Mondays) used to have everything ready for work and the Monday ahead by 7 o clock Sunday evening. That was until her life got a lot more complicated and a whole lot more messy. She was a man down and a baby up, and the chaos we have all experienced struck like a bolt of Monday lightening.

Today, if any of you make it to:

Work, or the
School run, or
Coffee with your mate, or
Golf, or

Your nail appointment, or
……………………………………… (add your own)

… if you do that on time, looking your best, without forgetting anything, without a cross word, or kicking the dog/cat/goldfish*, with a car full of fuel, having made the bed (this is not a woman’s job, boys – you sleep in it too!), and done the dishes (ditto last comment).. then call me now this minute…quick – you are the Monday Consultant of my dreams and the world needs your wisdom and guidance!

If on the other hand you go home to face this morning’s cold porridge smiling at you (no Goldilocks for you!), get moaned at by your kids because you sleepily muddled up the cheese and ham sandwiches in the lunch boxes again, get moaned at by your boss/staff* just because they don’t like Mondays either, and realise you are sitting in the office hiding your odd shoes under the desk (they both looked black in the dimness of morning!)… then welcome my friends to another Manic Monday!

But wait, I hear you shout, Monday doesn’t have to be pants!! Today there will be over 7 million hugs occurring in the UK, 300 people will get promotions, and over a thousand people will lose their virginity. See! People even have sex on a Monday, but don’t let it get you down if you haven’t – there’s always next Monday!

Have a good day, and let me know how your Monday is.
Loves xx
* If you can be bothered – it’s Monday!

Monday, 9 September 2013

Just another Manic Monday?

Manic Monday
There is no such thing as just another Monday. So make the most of this one people.

I find it best to plan ahead to make Monday less Manic, less stressful, and the karma all round calmer. So as I was searching through untidy bedrooms last night for remnants of last weeks’ school uniform to throw belatedly into the washing machine I remembered, and wished I’d followed my own wise words! By morning though, peace was restored and I only had to get up at 5am to get the wet clothes into the tumble dryer. The children had nice warm clothes to put on for school, so that was a definite bonus. Shame about the electricity bill, but you can’t have everything!

So… is there ever just another Monday? Here are some Manic Mondays facts…..

….50% of workers are late on a Monday….. Were you one of them you little tinker? Come on, fess up…

…..Most people don’t smile until 11.16 on a Monday morning. This was according to a study by Marmite (a bit like Mondays, you love it or hate it! I love it!). The gloomiest people are in the East Midlands where first smiles dawn at 11.33, and the smiliest people are in the South East where smiles crack though at just 11.16. Aah, Happy Days!

….Most people moan about Monday for a full 12 minutes….

….Monday is the best day to buy a car, because a quiet day is expected, they are prepared to a deal, and they are probably still thinking about how they wished is was Sunday!....

….over 1.2 million people will say ‘I love you’ today. That’s not to you personally, sorry – no one has that many people love them! They will say it to each other.

Let’s make history and change the stats. If you live with family or great friends tell them you love them today. And if you live on your own, smile in the mirror when you clean your teeth, and tell yourself!                           

Let me know how Manic your Monday is on the 1-10 ManicScale! Have a good one.

Loves xx

Friday, 6 September 2013

Manic Mondays is a light-hearted novel with a serious edge. This is the synopsis on Candy Jar's website.....

Caz has got everything a modern girl needs – a successful business, idyllic family life and even an 'Aga' in the kitchen! However, that all changes one Monday, when her hubby decides to leave her for their cleaner. All of a sudden Caz is left to raise her baby daughter alone, rebuild a career in tatters all while trying to avoid the attentions of Mike, who is ‘Mr Lovely’ until Caz notices his wedding ring...

Having lost everything, Caz is determined to prove that she can make
it on her own: juggling career, family and love life – all with the support of her friends who will do whatever they can to help Caz get back on her feet. Mondays may never be the same for Caz, but they will definitely always be manic.

Inspired by a period of change in the author's own life, she decided to focus on what that change might mean for another woman in today’s world, and how her Mondays would be different.

Funny, moving and inspirational – Manic Mondays can be described as

Bridget Jones meets the Undomestic Goddess.

Visit www.candy-jar.co.uk to place your pre-order

Thursday, 5 September 2013

A VERY BIG WELCOME!

Hi
Welcome to Manic Mondays Blog
Manic Mondays will be published shortly with Candy Jar. Please place your pre-order for a copy on the web site www.candy-jar.co.uk and offer your support for Manic Mondays.
So, what is it all about…here’s a taster.
Catherine Blake is a successful business woman who has it all until her husband, James, abandons her with her baby. Taking courage and making a brave decision she leaves the business with her husband, and moves from the rolling country hills of home to a city two hundred miles away with her daughter, Madeleine.
What do you do when busy hectic Monday mornings are now a timeless void? How do you cope when your world has ended and you have to start again in a strange, faceless city as a lone parent?
Tears, laughter, hope and tough decisions make this heart warming story a must-read for anyone who has ever had a job and a family and balanced their needs like a crazy circus act.
On this site I will post extracts from the book and hope to give you feedback and updates to make your Mondays sparkle!
Many thanks

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