Monday, 24 May 2010
Monday, 17 May 2010
Friday, 14 May 2010
Tuesday, 11 May 2010
Monday, 10 May 2010
Thursday, 6 May 2010
IT’S NOT JUST CHILDREN THAT LIKE REGULAR HOURS AND ROUTINE- SOME MUMS LIKE IT TOO.
Flexible working. Freelance. They all sound so free and easy, don’t they.Trouble is they seem to end up with some mum’s working practically for free- if they can get the work at all. This is a conversation I had today about possible work in a job that’s slapbang in my skillset and for which I have massive experience. Then client is located in a place that is inconveniently located about ten miles out of London- in a place that no creative would ever dream of living:
Me: Can I do it from home?
Me: What are the hours?
Headhunter: Nine till six.
Me: (computing madly- not having any idea of how I would actually make the journey at all - car? train? magic carpet?) Um, I can only do about ten till five as I have to be in central London for childcare at eight thirty in morning and six at night but I can work at home late into the night to make the time up.
Headhunter: I SO understand- I’ve got a baby too, in fact I’ll have to go as I’m working from home and he’s tipping everything out of the cupboard- but I’ll sort that.
Headhunter- a few hours later- Ok, sorted that! They’ll allow you to do ten till five- if you cut your pay to make up for the time lost in the office.
Me: -resisting the urge to snap- so not sorted at all then- asks how low I’d have to sink. It’s a lot more than the hours lost - pro rata.
I sink that low then put the phone down - feeling a bit low. Wonder how headhunters can work from home but creatives - who used to need quiet to think-have to tip up at the office.
Look at train times and costs and realise that ( with my knockdown rate, plus the added cost of overtime on childcare for the week which, even with the reduced hours will probably be necessary, plus the trainticket to the out of way place) I’d be working for roughly half the lowest that I’d decided I’d ever sink. I persuade myself it’s an investment in my future.
Then I have a long conversation with myself about exactly how I can bus, walk, bicycle, train and then walk from home to minder and then to the job in under an hour - ha! Then I have an upbeat conversation with the minder about working longer hours the next week. She is very generous about it. Persuade myself that any overtime I end up paying her would be an investment in my career.
I realise the bicycle needs total overhaul that will cost about fifty quid. Persuade myself it is an investment in my bicycle and my career.
I was quite glad when the headhunter called up later and said the job had gone. No doubt to someone with a magic carpet or magic children who disappear in a puff of smoke during full advertising creative hours.
Wednesday, 5 May 2010
Some good things about being an old mum
1) My mother is bored with aspiring to have perfect grandchildren. Her standards have slipped brilliantly. She doesn’t even expect little ones to remember to put the condiment jars on saucers any more.
2) My father is too old to be bothered to grouch when little one spreads marmalade over the tablecloth.
3) My niece is great for babysitting and loves to take her out because people think that she’s the mum.
4) I’m too old to remember all the things that I hated about my childhood and always intended to rebel against. In fact I don’t even feel deprived any more that I only ever had a homeknitted school jumper.
5) I don’t have to worry about what I’ll do when child leaves the nest. I’ll either be too ga- ga to care or dead.
6) I don’t get jealous because my little one thinks that her friends mums are prettier than me. Too right they are – they’re twenty years younger.
7) I don’t have to worry about how I’ll pay for uni- she can have what’s left of my estate for that and if there isn’t any, well, I won’t be there to worry about it.
8) I don’t set her demanding career goals, in fact –secretly- I’d be delighted if she was an underage mother as I’d get to see a grandchild.
9) I can excuse my middle-aged spread as baby tummy.
10) I think that a trip to Sainsburys, the park or church is as exciting as she does and am only too glad to fall asleep over come dance with me of a Saturday night.
In fact the only bad things affect her not me. But then maybe she’ll also be glad that I’ve left some room for her to live without me breathing down her neck when she’s an adult.
Monday, 3 May 2010