Little Gifts

All the yum, to be savoured at leisure

Its been our turn to receive little somethings from the DDC – not as part of any schedule or expectation, but simply as nice things to do. Its always nice to get things in the post, but thoughtful things from loved ones rather than Amazon orders do put a bigger smile on the face.

In this instance, across two deliveries, it was things picked out by myr s and the cub as “just because” morale boosters for both myself and Lady M. The first was a hamper of cheese and chutneys – they know our foodie nature so well – that the cub had spotted and picked out

We don’t have a Groot problem, we’ve got plenty

While the second delivery contained a new Groot Funko for Lady M, and a really well stocked art roll of pencils, charcoal, and chalks for me to get lost in my artwork with.

The notes and letters that came with them are a wonderful boon and reassurance – just whats needed as lockdown continues.

A Few Days Off

And…. Relax…

I’m visiting lady s for a few days as I had more leave to book this year than Lady M. After a long week, it’s been good to switch off. Lady M and I drove down on Sunday afternoon and dropped off presents for the household, then I stayed on – much to the cub’s bemusement.

The stress levels have been slowly dropping as we’ve watched films and YouTube clips. In between, we’ve been having a tidy up before Christmassing and generally taking it easy.

Tomorrow we’ll be seeing the cub at his school Christmas play, before Lady M returns and whisks me away so we can finish packing to go visit family next week.

Amusingly, Lady M had forgotten that I was going away at one point as she was hoping I might pick her up from drinking with colleagues this week – I mention this to forestall any visions you may have of Lady M somehow languishing like Rapunzel in her tower. One of our many strengths is that each of us are equally comfortable and in need of time alone as in being with each other (as wonderful as that is)

Big hugs

One of the guiding principles of dating lady s has been that it is public, known to all, and that includes her son. He is very much a typical boy of his age, so has taken our comings and goings in his stride, tolerating us as only he can.

But an interesting development has come about recently, where I’m greeted with big hugs and involved in conversations. It’s nice. It doesn’t stop him occasionally being a little ratbag when it’s time to get dressed for school, but again that’s business as usual.

It could just be that he’s just buttering us up with his birthday and Christmas both in the near future, but even the anti-school protests have mellowed, so perhaps he’s just… growing up?

The hugs and silliness are fun though.

Back Home

There really is nothing quite like your own bed to stop and relax, no matter how comfortable other beds have been. The shape I leave in my own mattress feels like a while body hug when I get back, and tensions I’ve only peripherally noticed begin to ebb away.

Perhaps that’s why, after crashing to bed for a couple of hours when we got home, I’m already feeling lighter and ready to return to work in the morning. That’s not to say I won’t be grumpy and stressed when I do, but for the first time in about a week or so my neck doesn’t hurt.

It could, admittedly also be tied to having got through yesterday, and so there’s a sense of a new start – or it could even be the prosecco that Lady M and I have shared this evening.

A little from all three columns I suspect.

I’m home, surrounded by my books, journals, fripperies, and little luxuries. I’ve spent a couple of days with my loves doing Christmas shopping, eating, and gossipping. I’ve about a month of work to pile through, and then I’m off until the new year. Right now? That feels good.

Poly Wants To Play

There’s a stack of shelves in our spare room that is groaning under the weight of many, many games. Card games, board games, and dice games lie alongside rulebooks for various roleplay games and are frequently pawed over before visiting people, or when we have people over.

Here then is one of the secret reasons why polycules gather: it’s the only way you can guarantee having enough people for a decent game of anything without going down the pub and dragging random people to the table. Most games need at least three or four people to play with any degree of complexity.

It’s one of the highlights of gathering loves, metamours, and kids around; now if only we could pick just one to play…

Decorations and Celebrations

A busy weekend this week. Lady M was at the first of what seems to be a string of office parties last night, and made her own skirt and top to wear to the occasion. As she was still working on final details late Thursday night, I was driven to observe that only she could have a con-crunch for a party.

Nevertheless she had a stunning outfit ready for the event, and I spent a quiet evening wrapping a mountain of Christmas presents, drinking wine, decorating the Christnas tree, and binging episodes of Luther on Netflix.

Today I’m off to see Lady S for a couple of days, so I had time for breakfast and pain au chocolate with Lady M before leaving her to tackle her own small hillock of presents and recover from the party.

I normally travel light, but I’m delivering birthday presents for the cub and a couple of early Christmas presents, so I have a suitcase nearly as big as I am. We may have gone a little overboard this year…

Wait, where’s November going?

I swear sometimes it’s like I blink and I’ve time travelled, or fallen through a crack in the space-time continuum, and it’s suddenly halfway through the month.

Admittedly we spent the week after MCM London largely recuperating and sleeping – and then celebrating Lady M’s birthday. Going back to work after that felt like standing at the bottom of a steep set of stairs, but I think that’s fairly normal.

I think the time has slipped past simply by dint of it being one of those periods of time where you just need to get your head down and plough on.

We’ve had some nice little highlights: we’ve more or less finished our Christmas shopping for example – and we had Lady S come by for a surprise weekend visit with the cub. We’d plotted this as a surprise so she and Lady M could have a proper date night as a delayed birthday treat.

(I had a boys night in with the cub on the xbox – and there was hardly any rage quitting on either side.)

So, a quick and quiet update post for you all 🙂 and here’s a recent photo of my sketch pad, because getting me to stop sketching is always an issue…

Picture of intricate inkpen artwork taken over the artist's shoulder, showing the page, his arm, and fine pen

Things The Cub Says: The Bag

So, the cub has a very strong sass-game, inherited from his mum, that combines with the natural sense of wonder at the world that a young lad has anyway to produce some amazing moments from time to time.

The backpack that he wears to school looks a bit like a cartoon monster. It’s a bright lime green, has big eyes and felt teeth along it’s fold down edge. At the beginning of term, Lady M taught him to treat it like The Monster Book of Monsters from Harry Potter. This involves gently stroking its spine (the top) before opening or closing the clasp. She even made the bag shuffle and roar while he wore it to emphasise that he needed to take care of it or it would fight back.

Fast forward to this morning and I get a message from Lady S that she has made a packed lunch for the cub, and try as she might she can’t get the bag to close. The cub walked up, took the bag off her, stroked it’s spine, and closed the bag without any problems.

He then looked her in the eye and said: “you don’t show this bag the love and respect it deserves.” He then added: “Jo knows how to treat my bag.”

To say that Lady S was a bit gobsmacked is an understatement. We have been teasing her on our group chat, saying we can’t imagine where he gets his sass from…

A week off: Portsmouth School Runs

We’re having a rare week all together and I have been rediscovering the joys of the school run as Lady S was a bit under the weather the last few days. (She is again this morning, but it’s self-inflicted today after a little too much wine last night at a meal for the whole polycule.)

I digress.

The cub has been discovering that I am not quite so easily wrapped around his finger, but that I am also more than happy to act completely daft at a moment’s notice.

So far we’ve convinced him that his monster-like school bag is related to the Monster Book Of Spells from Harry Potter, and needs it’s spine stroking before being opened. I have also taken to occasionally lumbering and loping like a silverback gorilla to speed him up in the mornings. It sounds daft, but it encourages him to catch up and try and tickle my tummy.

He’s a bright, inquisitive, energetic boy, who tries to push boundaries as much as any normal kid just starting at junior school – and his teachers are already singing his praises. He also has a rebellious streak a mile wide; and seems genuinely surprised when most of his attempts to subvert things like putting on shoes are met with my spotting them and teasing before he’s even finished starting.

We were talking last night about how we’ve all been pitching in this week – how it spreads the load and reduces stress to know that all of us are invested in helping raise and guide him.

I just didn’t expect, as the Charleesi starts her second year at university, to be brushing off the parenting skills again. Life’s funny that way, isn’t it?