When 2 + 2 = 6

After 10 months, I FINALLY got activated on the Girlguiding registration system, and after two months, I was thankful  when the pay-in book for our Senior Section unit’s bank account arrived. Which meant…WE FINALLY HAVE A BANK ACCOUNT.

The only thing was that we didn’t have the cheque book yet (not helpful, when you need to pay for activities!)

As I was sitting printing off boarding passes for the Parentals this evening (they go on holiday tomorrow), my stepfather picked up the pay-in book and said ‘Look! Here it is again – ********* Senior Section’

I’m like ‘Yeah, it’s for the Senior Section unit – I’m still waiting for the cheque book to arrive

To which my stepfather replied ‘Oh. But I took it to the Golf Club earlier‘.


He laughed – I thought he was kidding. And then I may have lost it a little bit.

Apparently, when he picked up the post that got shoved through our letterbox this morning, the envelope only showed the address and so he opened it. (This is the downside of not living in your own home – people open your mail assuming it’s for them. My Mum has a terrible habit of opening my Tesco Clubcard statements). Also in the post came his Golf Club membership things. It just so happens that the Golf Club is in our area, and so funnily enough has the same name. It also has a group for the older members. Confused at why something for ‘********* Senior Section‘ would be addressed to us, a debate was had between the Parental Unit and they decided that the Golf Club had made him treasurer or secretary of the OAP group without asking him and therefore had sent him a chequebook.

(Never mind that the chequebook came from the BANK)

Being the super organised helpful person my stepfather immediately took the chequebook and drove it to the Golf Club and dropped it into the secretary’s inbox.

Cue 4.45 p.m. when I find this out.

After all the hassle of phone calls and being put on hold and days waiting for the bank to call back and trying to get signatures…

Phone call to the Golf Club was made, and of course the secretary has picked up her mail and gone home for the weekend. NIGHTMARE.

Anyway. So the bank account saga continues on. With a new challenge of praying that the Secretary hasn’t sent the chequebook back to the Bank and that I’ll be able to get it back from her next week. Because Mondays aren’t manic enough already. Ha ha.

*Head Thunk* <<<<< sound of my head bashing off a brick wall. :)

Things that keep you humble

Many moons ago we established that I am prone to what used to be known as my ‘blonde moments’ but got renamed ‘malteser moments’ when I went brunette. I’ve had a few this week.

Last week I returned home one evening to discover I couldn’t get into my house with my key. The reason? The builders had locked our front door but left the key in the lock. Luckily, one of our builders was only just getting into his van and was able to use their back door key to go round and let me in.

The next day I wasn’t so lucky. I’d gotten home later. I had a horrible headache. The builders were gone. They’d left the key in the front door again. And the only key we had for our new back door was inside the house. Sadly (for this circumstance) our house is pretty burglar proof. No windows available to climb through. Thankfully I had credit on my mobile to call my Mum at work.

She had to look up the builders’ number.

For some reason the one she had was the builders’ sister.

Safe to say I was confused when she answered, and she was confused too!

Thankfully she gave me her brother’s number and I got through to him. By this time a hailstorm shower starts so I’ve taken shelter in my car.

1 hour and 15 mins later I finally got into my house thanks to a builder (not happy with his mate who had left the key in the front door right after he said ‘make sure no one has left the key in the front door‘) came to my rescue.

Suffice to say that at the weekend when I was home alone I was totally paranoid about the same thing happening again so I took our back door key on my keychain!

Monday morning comes, and I let the builders in at 8 a.m. and leave for work a hour or so later. It is snowing (yes, snowing) and pouring with rain and they have the front door wide open as they bring in building materials to the guest room.

As I walk out the front door, I yell ‘Now remember not to leave the key in the front door today!‘ and we all laugh, and I get soaked walking to the bus stop.

As I run off the bus and speed walk through the Old Town to my office I go to grab my keys so I have them ready. Sleet is being blown into my face and I’m soggy and cold. I know I have a day filled with clients, and looking forward to rushing home to pick up my car to head to my friends’ house for dinner.

But they aren’t there.

After teasing the builders about locking me out, I’ve now locked myself out of my car, house and workplace in one fail swoop.

Because I haven’t picked up my keys on my way out of the door.

In between appointments I’m frantically texting or calling friends that I can think of that could possibly go round and get my keys from the builders and live somewhere I can get to from work by bus easily. Unfortunately they are all otherwise engaged (and the one person who wasn’t I didn’t think to call forgetting that they wouldn’t be at work in school holidays).

So this is the solution I came up with.

Phoning the head builder to get the numbers of the builders in our house that day. As irony would have it, the one I get a hold of is the one who locked me out the previous week.

I get the builder to hide my main bunch of keys in my car.

And then we come up with a place to hide my spare car key so it 1) won’t get soaked in our lovely Spring weather 2) can’t be found by any potential thieves and 3) will be able to be found by me after work.

The chosen hiding place was a little complicated but I think quite ingenious. I’d tell you, but then I might have to kill ya! ;)

As we’re having this conversation, Sarah is sitting on the other side of the office laughing.

This is a malteser moment of the finest degree, but also where watching NCIS came in really handy.

Thankfully the rest of the week has been mostly malteser moment free, until tonight when I slammed the door of my fridge closed without taking my fingers away from the ?door frame? of the fridge.

In the process I knocked a glass jar of pesto over with a few other food items which clanged loudly on the floor, and I yelled a curse word out (it HURT!) and I’m sad to say no one came running because the other residents of the house were busy arguing over bathroom tiles. Glad I was in any life threatening situation then.

I gave my finger a good bash. Kinda ironic given how often I’m saying ‘Fingers!’ and ‘Watch your fingers!’ to various kiddles every time I see them placing them remotely close to any doors.

Once the bathroom tile drama was over, I did eventually get some sympathy from my mother when she saw my finger.

All I can say is thank God for spare keys and frozen peas.

Oh, and friends that give me keyrings as gifts enabling our builders to easily identify which of the keys were mine.



Curiosity may get me in trouble from my friends…

One thing is for sure, I think I’m discovering why there are so many ‘Mommy bloggers’ out there in the blogosphere. Kids sure provide you with much to write and think about. Sorry to say that not much to blog from last weekend when Mr Teapot turned 2 – but check out my friend’s creation for the event (totally homebaked from scratch!). The best part was the fact that it was chocolate cake inside.

The only downside – my jeans got literally ‘caked’ with Thomas. And I didn’t notice until I went to put my jeans on to go to church on Sunday morning. Ha ha!

However, last night was one of those nights that I had one of those potentially corrupting children moments. Several of them in fact, complete with a classic BK style malteser moment. It all began as me & Miss Sweetroot were watching a DVD of her dance show from a couple of years ago. We’re talking about the dances, and the dance teachers we’ve had. Then out of the blue she just asks:

“Do you have a job?”

I of course answer “Yes

This is of course followed up by the key question: “What do you do for your job?”

Panic sets in. This is my friend’s only just turned 7 year old daughter. I’m pretty sure they have not had ‘the talk’ with her at this point in her life. I’m definitely sure the subject of people getting pregnant when they don’t want to be pregnant has never been talked about because she has only known pregnancy as something to be celebrated and excited about. I’m now wishing I’d become a teacher. Teacher would be an acceptable self explanatory answer to this question that my friend’s daughter would already know about. Pregnancy counsellor and teacher of sex education? Even amongst adults in the pub this answer can be quite the conversation shocker.

I think my answer was quite honest (and hopefully not going to get me killed by her parents!)

Well, I help people who are pregnant, and some Mummies whose babies went to heaven while they were still in their Mummy’s tummy before they got to be born“.

At this point I’m praying that this will be acceptable answer for her.

It seems to be.

She tells me of someone she knows whose baby went to heaven while it was in their tummy. But then she asks me the toughest question of all:

Why does God let the babies go to heaven before they get to be born?

Thankfully my truthful answer of “I don’t know” is acceptable. (Phew. Because I really don’t know.)

Later I take her up to bed and I read her a bible story (Jonah and the big fish), and she reads me a story (Chip & Wilf’s Arctic Adventure). We’ll skip the part where I had to climb up to her bunk bed and in the process caught my scarf with my leg, almost knocked myself out and fell in ungracefully into a pile of stuffed toys. We chat to God together for friends we know on holiday (prompting a question about whether they have sharks in Morocco in case our friend gets his arm bitten off while surfing like Bethany Hamilton).

I’ve no sooner gone downstairs, when I hear little creaks and footsteps outside the living room. I’m reading ‘Father Fiction‘ by Donald Miller.

What is that book about?

It’s about people who grew up without having Daddies” I say.

“How does that happen?” she asks.

And let’s just say that for the next 20 minutes we have lots of chats about half-siblings, step siblings, step parents, how some people’s Daddys might go away by choice and others don’t, and whether the Mummy of mine she’s met before is my ‘real Mummy’ and how I have lots of brothers and a sister but we don’t have the same parents.

Thankfully, when my friends came home and I told them these stories, they did laugh. And they told me that when she starts asking how babies are made, they are going to tell her to ask me instead.

I really hope my friends are joking. (You are kidding, right?!)

Anyway. All this to say that I’m back in the business of corrupting children. Or trying not to corrupt them. These conversations are definitely up there with the time when Miss S asked me about why I had two earrings in each of my ears.

And I now realise I’m officially getting too old to try and climb onto bunk beds.



Don’t let a koala in your kitchen

One of things I’ve become a little bit notorious for is my ‘blonde moments’. Just over 5 years ago I decided to go brunette but the blonde moments stuck with me, so we declared that I was brunette on the outside, blonde on the inside…and these moments were newly christened as ‘malteser moments’.

Today I had one of those moments.

I spent a wonderous afternoon with old friends basking in the sunshine in the Royal Botanic Gardens as our friend’s toddler entertained us hiding behind trees and just generally being super cute and funny in that way that only a toddler can.

I returned home and because I wanted something quick to make so I could get to church in the evening, I bought a pizza.

And once the oven had preheated, I popped it in the oven.

When I took it out and put the pizza on the plate I was left with this…

Yes. That’s the pizza tray, and the polystyrene base from the pizza box that I clearly forgot to remove and put in the bin…melted onto said pizza tray.

If I didn’t get ill from remnants of melted packaging on the base of my pizza – not to worry. I clearly didn’t check the ingredients well, and didn’t realise that the pizza had chilli pepper mixed in the tomato sauce so that will help me regret my pizza decision a little more…! (I do have a icky headache threatening to turn into a migraine…I hope I’ve prayed enough that it’ll pass me by).

We did have some chat today about the signs we are beginning to see of our ageing. One discussion was when we would need to start dyeing our hair (or if we would). With the increasing number of wiry greys sprouting from my scalp, I’m thinking my time to dye is nearing fast. I’m thinking I may as well just go back to blonde when I have moments like these.

And yes, when I get my wages tomorrow, the first thing I’ll have to do is buy my Mum a new pizza oven tray!

You mean I can’t buy cherries for free?!

I woke up sleepy. I rolled over in the joy that I didn’t have to get up because it was Saturday.

Half an hour later (ok. 45 mins later) I sat bolt upright as I realised that it was not Saturday. It was SUNDAY.

I had managed to sleep in and miss church again.

I quickly didn’t care too much because I looked out of my window…clear blue skies in every direction. The BBC had got it wrong again – they had said it would be cloudy with ‘sunny intervals’ but there was no cloud. Just sunshine.

Gorgeous warm sunshine.

I washed my hair. I ate breakfast, and I ate lunch in the garden waiting for the text to say friends had got back from church.

I got the fondue set I’d discovered I still had for 2 years to return to said friends plus a pile of books my friend could use for inter:act course. My hope is she’ll be better with the reading list than me so I recommended she take one or two books with her on holiday to get cracking now. Knowing how many hours it took for me to wade through 20 pages of Bruce Milne.

We went to a cafe. We laughed at just how far one mini kahuna could make a teeny tiny raspberry go creating a new look for his Daddy’s t-shirt, and dyeing his own hands with a cerise pink tint that several baby wipes wouldn’t shift.

I headed to another friend’s. I bathed in the sunshine.

I got excited by my tan lines on my legs (thanks over-the-knee leggings!)

I headed home. I decided to be organised. I would go to the supermarket on the way home so I would have breakfast and not have to go on the way home from work on Monday night when I would surely be hungry and tired.

I went to the supermarket. I filled my basket with the necessities. And threw in a punnet of cherries to share with the team in the office tomorrow.

I conquered the self-service checkout without need of assistance. My food was scanned. My Mum’s birthday card was scanned (yes, her birthday is in 2 weeks, but I was being ORGANISED). It was packed.

Now the machine was asking me ‘Have you scanned your nectar card?’

I dove into my handbag to get my purse….the place where my nectar card was to get those precious loyalty card points.

And my debit card. To you know…pay for the food and the card!

It was not there.

Shoes were there. The socks I had used as sock puppets with Miss S to entertain the Mini Kahuna were there. My book was there. My diary was there. My friends’ house keys were there. My own house keys were there. A pen was there.

But no purse.

The screen flashed at me. The machine wished for payment.

My memory flashed back – to Friday when I had taken my purse out my handbag and into my rucksack so I could cycle down to the shop to buy some fruit and veg. Being all eco-friendly and healthy and stuff.

That was where my purse still was. Sitting at home. Not in my handbag. And not here in the supermarket.

Humiliated, I had to go to the self-service checkout supervisor and confess I  had forgotten my purse. And then drove home, found my drive blocked by an Asda supermarket truck delivering messages to the house next door (the irony isn’t lost on me), got out my car (once they moved their truck), retrieved my purse, went back to the supermarket and paid for my own messages.

Not so organised then.

At least I have tan lines.

I really, really must dye my hair blonde soon.

Do you laugh or do you cry?

Today has been a…challenging…day.

I had a meeting about advertising today which went on longer, and consequently I was running out to get lunch close to 2 p.m. and desperate for the loo.

Dumping said lunch on my desk I ran to the toilet.

And now I shall refer to the text I sent Sarah after she asked me to explain ‘How did the centre bathroom get flooded?’ where I refer to myself in the third person.

“Laurie needs to pee. She enters the bathroom and notices the tap running. She goes to turn it off and top part of the tap falls off. Water spouts up in the air creating an unwanted water fountain. Laurie tries to get tap back on all the while crossing her legs as water feature not helping need to pee situation…”

Eventually, after I managed to get in touch with our Landlord and the bathroom floor was swimming with water (despite my efforts to try and catch some of the water in a bucket as gravity overcame the shooting up effect splashing everywhere) I succeeded in putting the tap together again. By this time I was rather damp.

A man came by looked at it (& briefly recreated the water fountain)  and declared that ‘The tap was broken and needs replacing’

No kidding.

Let’s add on to that the fact that I now have to write an e-mail of complaint to Google Ads (another long story), my car seems to be leaking water into the passenger seat floor every time it’s been raining heavily and I came home to find a bill for almost £500 in my mail pile…I wish I’d never written what I posted yesterday.


No Selah today.

But apparently the story of the tap turned fountain made Sarah chuckle…glad to be of entertainment once again…!! :)

On being mistaken for a 15 year old…

The lassie on the right? That’s me. Taken on Easter Sunday a few weeks after I entered into *gasp* my late 20s.

Now, I chose to put this pic on for a reason, because the hoodie I was wearing in that picture I was wearing on Saturday lunchtime, and about the same level of make up was being worn (ie a little bit of eyeliner & mascara) though my hood was not up and my hair (in a state of frizzy curls) was tied back in a ponytail.

One of the quotes on my facebook info page is thus: “Laura Anne you’re getting OLD!” which was the reaction of my pastor’s son when he saw me write my age on a form at the Imagine Festival a few years ago. Yes folks…24 is apparently ancient.

So. Back to Saturday. I decided to head to the gym to get a quick workout in before I went to meet my friends at the ECA Degree Show.

I’m standing at reception. There’s a woman in front of me having a major fitness class booking dilemma of some sort. And of course one person on reception desk.

The lady at the reception desk asks me if I want to go into the gym. I say yes, but I don’t have a gym card. She apologises that I’ll have to keep waiting, then does a double take.

She looks at me suspiciously. And goes back to the dilemma stricken woman.

It’s finally my turn.

Ok. So you want the gym…..wait. How old are you?

I am momentarily confused. I must look confused.

I just need to check – are you over 16?” she asks.

And then it dawns on me…you have to be 16 to be in the gym. On your own.

The dilemma woman (still filling out things on reception desk) has now turned round to look at me.

I’m 27“. I answer, trying not to laugh, and feeling sincerely glad that I’m on my own because I’m pretty sure if my friends were here for this moment they would be ending themselves on the floor of the leisure centre foyer laughing their heads off.

I’m beginning to think I’m Benjamin Button.

Do I look like I’m aging backwards or something?

Now, I know that people often mistake me for being younger than I am (no one has ever guessed my age at 27. In fact one of the inter:act team went ‘What?! You’re 27?!!!‘ when I told them this story on Saturday after it happened)…

But being mistaken for a 15 year old?

And yes, the lady at reception was embarrassed, especially as my next question to her was “Is it ok to pay with my debit card?

Sigh. I guess as I’ve said before “it’ll be great when I’m 40“.





Things I didn’t even know about myself

It was Saturday morning. I had a beautiful (yes…beautiful) sleep in until past 9 a.m. – a total of NINE hours sleep. Very exciting (and much needed).

I went downstairs to get lunch, and checked the post. I was intrigued by a letter on the top of the pile of mail that the postie had shoved through our letterbox addressed to ‘Mrs Mackay’. I did think it might be from the national charity I work with who have had me down as ‘Mrs’ before, something that has caused a laugh or 2 amongst Sarah and myself. We are an anomaly in our organisation managing a centre despite the fact we are both under 40 and *gasp* single.

Anyway, I got quite the shock (and was rolling on the floor with laughter) when I discovered that the letter was to let me know that my daughter ‘Rosie’ had a place at a Brownie Pack.


I may not recall getting married (I presume my Western Isles roots have run deep having married a guy with the same surname as me and all). And even more scarily I don’t recall giving birth. Though my friends reminded me that they didn’t see much of me in the summer of 2003. So I had ‘post-viral fatigue syndrome‘….yeah…uh huh. That must have been code for ‘secretly pregnant‘. Oopsie!

But as a Brownie – I was Sixer of the Pixies don’t ya know?!  - (Heck…I’ve been a young leader and an Assistant Brownie Guider too!), I’m very proud that my daughter I didn’t have a clue about is following in my footsteps.


The best bit was that I was sunbathing in the back garden after church, reading Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone for like the umpteenth time, and my Mum came out having found the letter on the coffeetable.

“So you have a daughter called Rosie, eh? How come you never told me about this?!”

Though we have NO idea how the letter ended up addressed to (sort of) me and through our door, if nothing else it has given us a bit of a giggle.

**Don’t worry – I phoned the Brown Owl to let her know that her letter has gone to the wrong house! I am definitely not married and I really did have Post-viral fatigue syndrome and was definitely not pregnant or giving birth in 2003**

Malteser timing

I learned a couple of things today…

1. I should never read at text message at 7 a.m.

2. When someone puts a wee bit of Hepatitis B into you, it makes your arm shake.

But what of the post title?

Well my friends, I was awake this morning. Or so I thought. Up and at ‘em ready to go in plenty time to get across Edinburgh, park my car, pick up my Hep A/B booster vaccine from the pharmacy and then make it for my 10.30 a.m. nurse appointment.

All was well until I rocked up to reception

‘Hello, I’ve got an appointment with the nurse at 10.30

The receptionist looks at her PC.

‘What’s your name?’

‘Laura Anne Mackay’

More confused looks. Then she asks for my date of birth.

Um, your appointment isn’t until 11.30

Somehow, I’d manage to book the appointment and write it down in my diary wrongly. I booked 2 appointments in fact, and while I’d written one down at the correct time, the other I hadn’t. All would be fine, if it wasn’t for the fact my car is on a meter.


Luckily…there is grace. And grace came with an appointment available at 10.40 (thank you Jesus!).

So I got to have my dead arm, discover that the nurse who accused me of being pregnant grew up with one of our church elders and was a member of the baptist church. I’m not sure how to respond to this newly found knowledge.

I parked my car in Newhaven knowing that I’d later be going to see Inception with my friends Jenni & Gaz at a cinema in the area. I got the bus to work.

I finished work. I had to get to the cinema for the 18.20 showing. I run down the bridges, Leith Street to the top of Leith Walk where I jump on a bus. I’m hot and sticky and quite frankly my hair looks like I’ve been dragged through a hedge backwards.

I arrive at the cinema. Jenni and Gaz aren’t there. I look at the cinema times. There is no 18.20 showing of Inception. I try phone Jenni. No answer. Have I been stood up?

I check my phone for the text Jenni sent at 7 a.m.

‘There’s a showing at 19.20 is that ok?’

Oh well done me. TWICE in one day, I’m an hour early for something thinking I’m right on time.

Luckily, there is grace once again….Starbucks is open still and it’s just on the floor below. I have my laptop with me and can use the time to do work. Oh. And tweet about my stupidity.

I think the malteser factor is back in my life and is taking over.


(oh, and Inception is really fantastic by the way. Especially when it only costs you £2.60. Yay!)

What day is it? I’m not entirely sure.

It is the end of a very long week. The weather this week has been very…um…Scottish. Totally rank. Lots of snow, sleet, wind and pouring rain. Seriously been a few days now since I saw the big light in the sky that I believe is called ‘the sun’. With less sunshine become a more bleurgh brunette koala!

To give you a flavour…

On Tuesday, I fully believed all day that it was Wednesday or Thursday. In fact I think I went looking for the new episode of The Good Wife (which is on Thursdays) & couldn’t understand why it wasn’t anywhere to be found.

I didn’t find out Wednesday was Wednesday until about 6.30 p.m.. The weather had kept me awake some of the night and I did a lot of admin stuff on my mac wearing pyjamas under my duvet (mainly because I was so cold!) and kept getting distracted by huge lumps of snow falling off the roof and flying past my window. At 6.30 p.m. my friend text me going ‘Still coming round, Fajitas and tacos?’ It was then I discovered it was in fact Wednesday a.k.a NCIS night.

And had I been in the centre to collect the stuff I needed for schools the next morning? No. Because I thought, well, it’s such horrible weather, hopefully it’ll have eased off and I’ll pick them up tomorrow, because it’s Wednesday tomorrow.

Oh, but it does get better.

I went to school on this morning with Sarah. Yes, we did get lost in Livingston again. ‘I recognise this, we must be going the right way’ says Sarah. Then I realise the reason we recognised it was because we took (one of) the same wrong way we had done last week. Numpty-heids, the both of us!

It was a difficult class – not much participation, they all seemed a bit sleepy and the classroom was pretty hot and stuffy. So what did I say to my group of teens?

Are you usually this quiet, or are you all just sleepy because it’s a Monday morning?

Uhh…no…it’s Thursday‘ says one teenage boy.

*Hang head in shame*

I fell asleep in the afternoon – but knew I had to wake up to get my STI pics ready for the training course and meet Sarah at the training course venue at 6.15 p.m. It’s about 20-30 min drive.

At 17.15 I start panicking, leave the house without tea going ‘oh no, I’m going to be late, I’m never going to make it for 5.45!!‘ and rush out the house. It’s only as I drive into the rush hour traffic that I realise….”no hang on. I have to leave the house at 5.45, not be at the venue for 5.45″

And despite thinking last weekend that it was the 21st March, this week I think it’s about the 18th Feb & suddenly realised that next week is in fact March. And Cassie the Corsa needs to get her MOT. Have I booked her into the car hospital yet? Nope.

But I HAVE decided to go ahead with making cupcakes in exchange for charitable donations. Sorry to say to my long-distance readers that they are only available to people when they are in Edinburgh. People order the cakes, I make them, people eat them, and then make a donation to my Cupcake JustGiving page (that way it goes straight to the charity & it can be gift aided).

Tomorrow I have a day off – with the exception of some training course preparation for Saturday.

Tomorrow is Friday. Tomorrow is Friday.

Let’s hope I can get my head around that. :)