I Was Swallowed By A Hippo

Castle life, Aga strife, slummy mummy, average wife


on January 5, 2014

All in all, 2013 was a good year. Aside from two huge losses, one slightly expected, the other a devastating shock, lots of wonderful things happened and it ended it exactly where it started, at a party in the castle, with me trying to avoid kissing 50+ people. It’s just NOT hygienic. The big difference this time was that we were hosts rather than guests, which had the surprise benefit of putting me off drinking too much. It was a strange but welcome sensation to wake up on January 1st with a clear head.
I do love a new year. It’s like a second chance to right the wrongs, to pour all your energy into good intentions and draw a line under the previous year’s fails. Naturally, I fully expect things to go to shit by February 1st, but here is a rough breakdown of my goals and expectations for 2014:

No more of this sort of thing.

No more of this sort of thing.

The Aga

  • I will build upon recent successes and host regular dinner parties for family and friends. I will not poison anyone, including myself.
  • I will not walk away and leave toast unattended then blame the Aga for the subsequent charred mess
  • Similarly, I will not leave my ‘moonblush’ tomatoes longer than the necessary 4 hours, and I will definitely not completely forget about them until I put something else in the oven the following day. Ditto decorative chillies, roast aubergines and bacon


  • I will put an immediate stop to the slippery slope I seem to be on, back to last year’s size. Having done pretty well at managing to shift a stone, it all went wrong after the summer and I’ve regained 9lbs. This is Not On and I will get back on track immediately. Consequently:
    • I will not eat between meals
    • I will not finish entire chocolate oranges/bags of tablet/ selection boxes, in one sitting
    • I will not mix carbohydrates and proteins. (It’s tragic, but it works)

    Hopefully these monumental small sacrifices will result in a slimmer, healthier, more fabulous me, just in time for my fortieth birthday, whereupon I will be comforting eating donuts and drowning my sorrows in Sauvignon Blanc for the rest of the year.

Family Life

  • I will not swear at the children within earshot. Of my husband.
  • I will nurture their creativity and not get stressed when they add onions to cake mixture or paint the furniture.
  • I will not resort to fish fingers more than twice a week
  • I will listen avidly to my husband’s chat about the biomass boiler and aim to understand the general workings of it which I can then share with interested parties, should I encounter any
  • I will listen graciously to my mother’s parental advice and not regress to my teenage self and slam the phone down on her


  • I will not neglect the chickens
  • I will read challenging and stimulating novels at bedtime, as opposed to playing Candy Crush relentlessly
  • I will dust regularly
  • I will memorise the family history so I can stop talking bullshit to visitors

I think that’s enough to be going on with. Now pass the carrot sticks and humous. *wails uncontrollably*

Happy New Year!


7 responses to “Goals

  1. Caroline says:

    Mine are exactly the same. Apart from the castle, Aga, biomass (?) and chickens. But I’m with you on EVERYTHING else.

  2. Dave says:

    Mine is to learn to make French Pastries. (sorry). As for leaving toast unattended, a timer helps. My timer has saved many breakfast sausages from a horrible fate.

  3. First of all I want to say wonderful blog! I had a quick
    question in which I’d like to ask if you don’t mind.
    I was curious to find out how you center yourself and clear your mind prior to writing.
    I have had a tough time clearing my thoughts in getting my ideas out there.
    I truly do enjoy writing however it just seems like the first 10 to 15 minutes tend to be wasted simply just trying to figure out how to begin.
    Any recommendations or tips? Cheers!

    • mrsmachall says:

      Thank you! I think the pressure of only having about five minutes at a time before the next tantrum or screaming match (the kids, not me) helps. I don’t think I’ve ever been ‘centered’ in my life!

  4. […] not going to bother with resolutions for 2015 as I failed miserably at last years  (dust regularity?? Was I on drugs??) but I can only wish for more of the same happy, special […]

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