This week’s…Reasons To Be Cheerful #R2BC

1. I know, it’s a strange reason to be cheerful, remembering the dead, but let me explain. This week I bought poppies for my sons. Their faces beamed with pride as I pinned them to their school jackets. and I felt like a  generational baton has been handed over. Just as my dad had told me about the sacrifices our forebears had made to give us the privileges we enjoy today, so I have told my sons, and one day, they will pin poppies onto their own children’s coats and explain to them the reason why.

.2. Sitting down with the headmaster at my sons’ school to talk about my four year-old. He’s an August child and I’ve been worried for a while that his speech and motor skills are a long way behind those of his classmates. The headmaster looked me in the eye and said: ‘Keith, your son is perfectly normal. He is bright, happy and intelligent.’ And do you know what? I burst into tears. I have never been so embarrassed in my life. I just wish he didn’t use his office to peel so many onions.

3. My wife Rebecca was nominated as Columnist of the Year in the magazine industry’s prestigious British Society of Magazine Editors’ Awards held at the Hilton Hotel in London’s Park Lane on Tuesday. She didn’t win (Times columnist Caitlin Moran received that honour) but I am massively proud of her nonetheless. Go Successful Other Half!

4. A night home alone with my boys. My wife and I had a wonderful weekend away re-connecting, but it was just as great re-connecting with my sons while their mother was at the above awards. They’re funny and cute, but best of all, they do EXACTLY as I say, which includes: ‘It’s 8 o’clock. Bedtime. NOW!’ thus allowing me a totally isolated three or four hours with a bottle of wine and loads of crap on the telly.

5. Eating chicken feet for the first – and last – time ever. It was a challenge set by colleagues at Handpicked Media. And one I shan’t be repeating in a hurry. It wasn’t so much the taste – think chicken wings – but the fact I got a toenail stuck between my teeth.

6. The kidless weekend away my wife and I had at the Bath Royal Crescent Hotel. Makes me fill up just thinking about it (yes, crying again). Only another three years to wait until the next one!

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5 Responses to This week’s…Reasons To Be Cheerful #R2BC

  1. Susan Eardley

    Lovely post, rang so many bells! But whats with the chicken feet – a toenail stuck in your teeth – was nearly sick just reading about it! Yucky! :)

  2. My mum used to buy a whole chicken from the butcher with the feet, liver, neck, some other gibblets, and a few unborn eggs already removed and put in a separate bag (stuffed inside the bird actually). They all went into the chicken soup to give it more flavour. The feet were discarded before serving but the other stuff was all highly prized – we fought over the eggs.

  3. Ya big softie. Totally understand why the head’s onions would make you cry. x

  4. Congratulations to your wife – what a fabulous achievement…& quite understandable to burst into tears after such glowing feedback about your son (says the woman who can’t even watch her child race one length of a pool without crying)

  5. Great post. I felt exactly the same way about the generational baton this morning. We stood as a family at the village memorial, listening to the service and I was thinking about how nobody in our generation lost a close family member because they chose to give their life to the service of our country (we’re not a forces family!). We remember for our grandparent’s generation, the Little Chap’s great grandparents – my grandmother lost her brother who was in the RAF, my grandfather lost a brother to suicide after the war as a result of his time spent in Belsen. They’re all long gone now but it felt right, carrying on remembering for them.

    Despite his tender age (2) and our deliberate avoidance of too many references to death and dying, the Little Chap seemed to grasp the sombre mood of the occasion and I pray his generation also knows no loss but that he will nevertheless continue to hand the baton and the memories to the next generation too.