Category: TOTD

Retirement is like being a teenager again without the spots

Our high school senior returned home the other day, looked at the two of us still sitting at the kitchen table on our computers, and asked ‘So what have you guys been up to today?’. Those were his words, but what he really meant was ‘Have you guys actually done anything today?’. The answer was... Read more »

My ideal dirty weekend is in a hotel that lets me re-use my towel

I’m not being rude. Re-using your towel isn’t a euphemism for anything. But I’m fed up expending energy trying to save energy and the planet when we go away for the weekend. In my family, I’m the original Miss Re-usable and Miss Re-cyclable; I can find a second life for anything, including retired husbands and... Read more »

Tips for Michelle Obama on how to deal with a man suddenly at home full-time

Michelle, your world is going to change. Those days of being able to sit undisturbed and unjudged for watching four episodes back-to-back of some daft Netflix show are over. Because your man is being let loose. He’s being made a free agent. He’s ‘looking forward to spending more quality time with the family’. In other... Read more »

My husband's trying out retirement; I just say he's trying

Actually I’m joking. Not about the retirement bit – that’s officially true, as of this week – but that I’m silently saying OMG to his new omnipresence. But it’s interesting how many times we’ve both been asked by our friends and his colleagues about how I’m going to cope. It’s a bit like when you... Read more »

Time to say goodbye to our old friend, the snow-free sidewalk

He’s likely to be leaving Chicago this weekend, and I’ve no idea when he’ll be back – maybe weeks, most possibly months. I’ll miss seeing him, his predictability, his solidity, the way he’s always there as soon as you step out of your home in the morning. But you could tell he was getting ready to... Read more »

Dear Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump, this Thanksgiving I thank you for...

So you’re probably thinking, what on earth can you thank that person for. ‘That person’ being either Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump depending on your political leanings. But if you notice, I said ‘Dear Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump’. ‘And’ not ‘or’. Because that ‘and’ matters this week as it’s Thanksgiving, the time America is supposed... Read more »

Sorry autumn, I've fallen for fall

Fall is one of those cross-over words, that designate you as US English or UK English. Like pants and trousers, eraser and rubber, fanny and the word beginning with P used by Donald Trump in the now infamous 2005 tape (yes, fanny does mean that in the UK). And this year, I’ve crossed over from autumn... Read more »

What's great about 'my bad'. And what if Hillary or Donald used it.

If there’s one expression I’ve come to love in America, it’s ‘my bad’. It’s taken a while for me to feel comfortable saying it, but my husband would argue I’ve never been comfortable saying ‘I’m sorry’ – at least to him. But I’ve embraced ‘my bad’ because to my mind it goes much further than... Read more »

When did you last change your toilet brush?

Now I warn you, we’re going to get personal here, more personal than some people might be comfortable with. But if you’re reading this, you clicked on the headline, so you knew what you were letting yourself into. I ask the above question only because I’ve been in some hoity-toity places with space-age toilets that... Read more »

Even after eight years I still stop and think 'Wow, I'm living in America'

It happened again just the other day. It was one of those heart-bustingly beautiful sunny days, when the cornflower blue Midwest sky was reflected in the glass palaces and silver towers of downtown Chicago. I caught myself looking up in wonder, and boom, I was the little Northern Irish girl, brought up on ‘Dallas’ and... Read more »