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We would have a bond that meant my daughter would talk to me if she were being bullied and, later, would ask me about contraception and drugs. But how could that bond be built if I wasn't there? I sat on the 6. My mother was an active feminist.
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I had studied her copy of The Female Eunuch at university. But what for? I tapped away on my phone at breakneck speed. I didn't even want to pause to pull out my laptop. The world had made me believe that, because I had a few brain cells, I could be Kate Adie and also have six children. Hard work and ambition had enabled me to skip through my early adult life. In my 20s, I schmoozed in the dotcom boom in San Francisco, served caviar and champagne care of the venture capitalists.
Nothing could stop me. That is, until I got married and had a child. And the first couple of years after Bella's birth in Sydney were easier. I stayed at home for the first year and we lived frugally on rice and lentils. Then I worked part-time. In Australia, everyone seemed to agree that family came first, and it was fine to start at 7am and leave at 3pm. The jigsaw puzzle I had built of my life was falling apart. My beliefs of what it was to be a good mother were being smashed, although I wasn't sure if it was my beliefs that were at fault or my own ability.
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I peered at the other women on the train. Their makeup and hair was perfect, they were on conference calls and it wasn't even 8am. I felt as if society were telling me I had to try to be the perfect worker Monday to Friday, the perfect mother every weekend, and toned, healthy woman all year round. Oh, and, of course, wife, friend, sibling and daughter. At work, over lunch, I watched my colleague eat his baked potato, bacon and chips, and worried about what Bella was having for lunch and, actually, for dinner. I realised I didn't know what she was eating for any meal that week, nor did I have any idea how she was coping with her homework.
It was at that point that I decided to resign.
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Dave and I had made a conscious decision to have a child and we had always wanted to be the ones raising her. We talked about my decision. Financially, it was not a good move Dave's pay just covers our rent and bills , but he knew that, emotionally, it was important for our family. I held off for a few weeks to coincide with my daughter's last day of term, and then shocked my boss with the news.
I stepped into the meeting room with a big smile. He had apparently nicknamed me "the uber-professional" and was expecting me to celebrate a win at work. I said, beaming: "I'm handing in my resignation. That final Friday, when I handed over my laptop and phone, and met Bella at school was one of the happiest days in my life. No cobbling childcare together during the holidays. We had seven weeks together, three of them camping with her daddy, our best family holiday in a long time.
Funnily enough, I realise now that my mother wasn't the perfect feminist mother either. And that meant stepping back at a point when she was far more successful than my father. Now, all the angst and negativity have vanished.
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I feel happy, stable and strong because I took control of the problem in my life. But it also makes me uncomfortable writing all this because I am of the generation that takes equality for granted. So am I now in agreement with the sexist former colleague who always maintained that women belonged at home, and said "I told you so" when I resigned? What am I saying to all my female friends working outside the home?
Am I saying they are bad mothers? I am saying that if I had stayed in my job and not changed anything, I think I would have been a bad mother. I believe that women should have the choice, and I envy women who seem to be able to juggle it all — career, family and looking gorgeous at the same time.
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But I also believe that, just as with our body-image issues, we should stop pretending it is fine and dandy if it's not, and stop trying to be superwomen at the expense of our families as well as our mental and physical health. This is all I can remember but it would be around 's somewhere in there. Town Plagued By Bees A town is plagued by a swarm? The unusual thing about this book is how the town deals with the problem: they make a huge jam sandwhich and trap all the bees in it!
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Little Red House in the Country Hello, I am looking for a children's picture book about the passage of time from the perspective of the house itself. Probably written in the 50's or possibly even earlier. The books begins with the house surrounded by pleasant countryside and over the next few pages and as the months and years go by , folks begin building other houses, shops and so on. The house eventually becomes part of a town, then a city, then a sprawling metropolis surrounded by dark buildings, elevated trains, and urban decay.
Finally, someone who remembers the house or who was raised in it , finds the house and has it transported to new countryside. Any help finding this book or at least the proper title would be greatly appreciated. Drugina's Harp I am looking for a book my daughter read many years ago and would like to find again. She can't remember the author. She says the title is Drugina's Harp but I am not sure about the spelling of Drugina.
I have tried LOTS of spellings with no luck. It's a bout a little girl and her brother who go into a magic shop and get sucked into an alternate universe with multiple suns. That is all I know about it. Hope you have better luck locating it than I have had. Girl With Magic Rubber Boots I read a book around about a girl that finds a pair of boots that when worn take her "leagues" instead of steps. She may have had other magis things too, but this is all i can remember.
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I want to read the book to my children. Sound familiar anyone? Ballooning Escape from Volcano I'm looking for a children's book in which a child somehow ends up on an uncharted island, where there are a bunch of people living quite peacefully, but out of the mainstream of the world. At the end, the volcano that is the basis of their island erupts, but they have an evacuation plan in place, and all leave the island in hot air balloons. As I recall, the pictures show the people in Victorian costume.
I read this in the USA in the s, or maybe earliest s. John's, Newfoundland. Girl Crazy About Jellybeans This girl is crazy about jellybeans. She has a friend who loves them too It was about a small girl and her rather poor family. It was set on the east coast of the US, and the family had something to do with cranberry farming. If I am remembering correctly, there were 3 books in the series.
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Would greatly appreciate any help you can give, Thank you. Forgotten Title An archaeologist, who has a hunch back, opens a tomb and is affected by the escape of the trapped gasses. The story that unfolds takes place in an ancient egyptian life style with him being a type of high priest and the heroin being of royal blood. It is only at the climax of the story that one remembers that the inception was in modern times.
NB As an archaeologist he was aware of the dangers of trapped gasses but failed to take suitable evasive action and, I think the title was something like "run for cover" but it could be something totally different. Female Pirate From Fowey I am looking for a book which may or may not be a true story, based on a female pirate from Fowey, Cornwall. I think it was published quite recently, within the last ten years.
In the house she encounters a young man who is really a fairy prince and is trapped in the house by an evil spell. He tells her wonderful stories about fairies, elves and goblins in a fairyland which is really his home. I remember one story was about a kidnapped fairy princess and a female goblin was impersonating her.
The goblin was discovered by someone dropping a piece of goblin? At the end of the book the girl finds out the true identity of the young man and somehow by telling her the stories he is freed from his spell and can return to his own land.
I know the book I had was a paperback and I think had a fairy prince and princess on the cover. I think the book was called either Fairy Tales or Fairytales. I've been searching for about 10 years now but no one seems to know what I'm talking about. I hope someone reading this can help me. Fabian About 10 years ago I bought a book from Tenerife airport to read while we were delayed. It was a great book but I lost it during my house move. It had a guy called Fabian in it that died in a car accident but came back to visit his mum.
A rose also played an important part in this book. Giles, Oxford. Elephant On A Teeter Totter I'm looking for a book about an elephant on a teeter totter and the animals who try to move him. Several try until a flea or butterfly lands. Teaches children about importance of every little bit helping. Disturbing Tale Read in mid 80's. Bound Girl The story is about a little French Catholic girl who is sent to live with a very strict Puritan family after her mother dies on the ship on the way to America.