Today I am pleased to welcome author Ali Chrisp to the Love of a Good Book.
A big thanks to Ali for stopping by.
Ali Chrisp’s career has included teaching aerobics in the early 1980s (often demonstrating death-defying lunges and squats on a dangerously wobbly trestle table!), working as a sales negotiator in a local estate agent, then spending twenty-three years as a civil servant. For the last five and a half years she has been working part-time as a personal assistant to a lady with Alzheimer’s. Ali is a real animal lover and the proud owner of Lola, a bonkers, mud-loving Labradoodle, and Winnie, a feisty rescue cat. She lives with her husband and their semi-feral teenage son who lurks in a dark corner of the house. He is mainly nocturnal, coming out to forage when the house is quiet and leaving a trail of destruction behind him. She wouldn’t change him for the world though.
WHEN WILL MY TEENAGER BE HOUSE TRAINED?
What did I just see out of the corner of my eye? Was it a shadow? Was it a ghost? Or was it a rare sighting of a Greater Spotty Male Teenager? Closely related to the sloth, it is notoriously difficult to train and, when challenged, it has a tendency to sneak off or explode.
Top 10 signs that you’ve got one living in your house:
1. He has a physical need to switch on lights, TVs, heaters and other electrical devices in every room he enters, leaving them all on and scuttling back to his darkened lair.
2. You will find at least three pairs of pyjama bottoms draped over the edge of the bath. He will always take a fresh pair out of the drawer every night until the drawer is empty.
4. The ratio of discarded boxer shorts to the number of days in the week is disproportionate. They are often concealed inside jeans, under the bed or even hanging from lampshades. It is not uncommon for the creature to change them several times a day after showering, exercising and choosing a different outfit.
5. Listen out for loud belching noises that sound like Buddy the Elf or a moose in agony. There is a common misconception that this behaviour will have disappeared before adolescence, but it can re-emerge at any time, when least expected.
6. When he is heavily involved in ‘gaming’ behaviour, your phone will ring in the lounge and a grumpy voice on a mobile phone will ask what time tea is. If it is going to be longer than two minutes, there will be a period of silence, or even a grunt, before the phone goes dead.
7. If he is called for his meal and the meal isn’t in his food bowl for immediate consumption, he will stomp around and even snarl. Always ignore this behaviour to avoid reinforcing it. Remind him who is boss and he will hopefully remember for a while.
8. When asked to load the washing machine with his bedding, there is a strong tendency for him to poke a small amount into the drum and leave the rest trailing across the floor so that the cat curls up on it and covers it with fur or the dog tramples mud over it.
9. On rare occasions a single dirty mug may signify the presence of a male teenager, but it is more common to discover a collection of different sized mugs and glasses containing congealed milk, smoothies and flat coke. As a sign of dominance these are often accompanied by dirty cereal bowls and plates.
10. Do not be fooled if he calls the dog into the kitchen, especially at bedtime. He is not offering to exercise her – it is more likely that he has spilt cereal, milk or crumbs on the floor and can’t be bothered to clear it up. This partnership with canines is also evident when he tries to attribute pungent odours to the pet.
Please remember that this stage of development doesn’t last forever and when he finally moves out, you may find it upsetting. Do not worry – he may be adopted elsewhere or find his way home in a few years’ time to take up residency again. This stage is called regression and you will probably need to invest further time and money on re-training and settling outstanding bills.
A laugh-out-loud comedy about families, friendship and romance. The perfect feel-good summer holiday read.
Jo Longford’s life takes an unexpected turn when her bosses wrongly accuse her of stealing from a client. Suddenly, she needs to find a new job and a new home for herself and ten-year-old son, Tom. Not to mention their small menagerie of badly behaved pets.
Her selfish mum isn’t much help; obsessed with keeping up appearances, nothing her daughter does is ever good enough for her. But at least Jo can rely on best friend Val for support. They’ve been getting themselves into mischief since they were teenagers, and that includes an eventful school reunion and joining a cringeworthy dating agency. Some things never change!
Life certainly doesn’t get any easier for Jo. Will she be able to fend off her sex-mad landlord – a retired businessman who struts around in Lycra and thinks he’s God’s gift to women? Are her new employer and quirky clients at the Handy Jobs Domiciliary Care Agency all they seem?
And will Jo ever be able to sort out her chaotic love life when two equally unsuitable men gatecrash her world?
Home Comforts is a heart-warming tale with a cheeky twinkle in its eye.