A recent spell of alarmingly pleasant weather has lured Vancouver’s body beautiful out onto to our local beach. In an effort to avoid embarrassing myself/children too much by pouring my wobbly bits and mum belly into anything approaching beachwear I have been giving Dr Michael Moseley’s much publicised Fast Diet a go. I have never been one for following ‘faddy’ diets, Atkins seemed too stinky, Food Combining too complicated and Cabbage Soup downright grim. I did once have a half hearted attempt at Weight Watchers though stopped short of actually attending a group. I just joined forces with a gang of girls from work, we put a set of scales in the meeting room and diligently weighed ourselves and patted each other on the back whenever one of us lost a bit of weight. That was until, after four long rice cake filled days, the the call of cheap wine at the BBC bar got too strong.
The Fast Diet though seems to be genuinely good for you and as well as being a healthy way to lose weight it also lowers blood pressure, cholesterol levels and insulin sensitivity (see thefastdiet.co.uk). Also, because you only really have to think about it twice a week it’s also relatively easy to stick to and miraculously it seems to be working. According to my new high-tech scales my body fat percentage is now in the “Athlete” category. Therefore, I can only assume I have some kind of body dysmorphia as when I look in the mirror Jessica Ennis’ twin definitely isn’t staring back at me. But come to think of it are Phil ‘The Power’ Taylor and golfer John Daly classed as athletes? I do definitely feel healthier though and one step closer to braving a bikini and with ringing endorsements for the diet from top celebrity Adonises such as Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, Phillip Schofield and Dom Joly no less, it can’t be long before I’m strutting along the beach like Miranda Kerr at an undies shoot.
Casper has achieved a milestone this week, his first school photo. He seems to have managed to continue a family tradition of looking like a total mess in the picture, though I personally (of course) think it adds to his cheeky schoolboy charm. He is sitting grinning at the camera with tangled hair, mud up his arm and something unidentifiable on his face. I’m proud of him. When I was young every school photo day my Mum would send me in with a comb and strict instructions to use it. As I queued up I always diligently did so but somehow mysteriously by the time I reached the front of the queue I always looked like 80’s telly favourite Marmalade Atkins.
Like any good middle class guilt ridden Mum I am constantly trying to think of ways of entertaining and educating my boys which distract them from the allure of the IPad and TV programmes whilst simultaneously reassuring me that I am actually doing a half decent job. In search of inspiration I borrowed ‘The Pre-Schooler’s Busy Book’ from the library which promised ‘365 creative learning games and activities to keep you 3 to 6 year old busy’. The book’s suggestion of ‘sorting laundry’ didn’t immediately strike me as either creative or in fact a game. However, as I was doing it anyway I decided to give it a whirl and enlisted Casper’s help. He approached his task of picking all his own clothes out of the laundry mountain with gusto, for about two and a half minutes. It did though succeed in suddenly making previously discarded toys seem very very appealing to him so in a way it was a success. I don’t think I will rush to try the other ‘creative’ suggestions such as, washing the dishes, sorting socks or cleaning coins. Though considering a book has been published full of these revolutionary ideas I may well try writing one myself. I’m sure suggestions of incredibly exciting games such as sweeping the floor, unloading the dishwasher and cleaning the bathroom would provide unlimited entertainment for children and parents everywhere.