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Finally emerged from my shell, and need new friends. How do I do this?


Had a horrific time and shut myself of, when I finally got better I realised that in 3 years nobody had even sent me a text to see how I was. Obviously they are not friends, but after all this time I don't want to get in touch with them again.

So I need to make new friends, how can I go about this? I work full time, study, have two teenagers so time is a real issue for me.

I don't have any support at all, as I'm a widow and my haven't spoken to my family for years and years now. (i was abused by them)

I have lost self confidence the past few years, partly as it hasn't been much fun and realising my friends didn't care even though I was always there for them.  Also, when i meet new people, as I am so isolated I don't have much to say, eg when people ask what i do on the weekend I have nothing to say!!

I have enrolled on a short course, it's all I can afford, which is a positive first step.

My teenagers sort out their own life so I have never spoken to their parents. My teenagers friends are dropped off, and when I say bring your Mum in next time for a coffee, you can imagine their response!!

So any other tips and suggestions for me to start building my life up again?

I work full time, but feel a bit left out as they all have partners and family support.

oh by the way, I am also naturally quiet. I am much better at listening and like my own company,  it's just a bit too much!! In work people come to me with their problems,  so I am a nice person.

Any tips would be really appreciated. Thank you x

Posted on: September 3, 2010 - 1:48pm


It's good that you're posting here too, as even though it's 'virtual', the people here are brilliant for support - and laughter too.

Personally, I feel enrolling on the sort course is a really good start.  I did a crafts course last year, which for me was quite  big step.  Mixed ages groups, and a lot of fun.  I don't seem to have time to go back though.

I quite like my own company too (just as well possibly) and have to say that I have not been in touch with friends, who did not respond to me after my divorce. 

However, divorce is such a different situation...

I'm so sorry you've lost your husband.  What a loss for you and your children to have to come to terms with.

I'm sorry that I don't have suggestions here.  My lot are involved with Scouting, and I've sort of found my self being saddled with that when the leaders 'retired'!!  I also love it!  It sort of gives you a bit more of adult contact, but not much, to be honest...

Please do keep posting.  Look forward to getting to know more about you.

Posted on: September 3, 2010 - 2:02pm

Parenting specialist DoppleMe

Hi towerofstrength, welcome to One Space! As your name suggests I imagine you have been a tower of strength for your children after the loss of your husband.

It sounds as if you are incredibly busy, you will need to find space for socialising!  You mention that you are starting a short course soon, what is that in?

I wonder if you could join a voluntary group of some sort, whether it be helping the homeless, or joining a church?  What about looking at local reading/book clubs?  Have a look at Meetups, it looks American, but you put your postcode in and you may find something of interest there.  Or what about getting out and about walking? Ramblers do walks all over the country. 

You could find out if there is a local community centre that run womens groups, learning cookery, knitting, singing or even self confidence?

Or as sparklinglime mentioned - online communities, although it sounds as if you want to get out and meet new people? 

Posted on: September 3, 2010 - 2:15pm


Wow that was a very quick reply! Thanks Anna and sparklinglime.

Sparklinglime you mentioned that your crafts couse was a big step. How did you manage it?  It's a big step going from being a Mum to a person again, so how did you achieve it?

Anna, it's a computer course that starts in November. It is from 6-8pm in the evening and awkward to get there by public transport. A mile walk from  the train station in a bad area or 2 buses to get there. (buses are non existent after 6 here) It would be easier for me to go straight there from work, but then I wouldn't see my kids all day. They may prefer that lol!

I think it's a 7 week course, so I may just have to bite the bullet and go for it.

I love the idea of the ramblers, although I can leave the kids alone for short periods, I don't like being too far. I would never be able to drag the kids on a ramble as i have been trying for so long! But when they are older I will join.

I'll look at the meetups and other suggestions soon as i have to dash now.


Thanks again x




Posted on: September 3, 2010 - 2:43pm


It was a christmas craft course, and I love Christmas!  I also had an idea of who the tutor was, which helped.

I think that was 8 weeks - which was quite good - it's like I could see the end coming before it started, if you like, a bit like a safety blanket!  It was good though, and the laughter we had was brilliant.

I'm still don't think I'm quite "me" again though. There's so much running around to do with the children still - my youngest is 11 and has just started in secondary school.

Posted on: September 3, 2010 - 2:54pm

Parenting specialist DoppleMe

Hello tower of strength

Great name!

The others have given you some excellent suggestions. I just wanted to add that you are aware of a lack of self-confidence and also mentioned abuse in the past. In addiiton to your socialising, I wonder if seeing a counsellor would help, not only to lay to rest the ghosts of the past but also to improve your self esteem. What do you think?

Posted on: September 3, 2010 - 5:15pm


Hi Louise,

I did try counselling, but the counsellor told me his problems! So it put me off as it took a lot of courage for me to go. I also know a few people in work who are counsellors and they are awful, they tell people what their clients have said!! So much for confidentiality!  So those experiences have really really put me off and it isn't something i would be tempted to try again in the near future.

I had a rare bit of free time yesterday and though I would go to the gym. What a hassle! They said I needed to be inducted and shown how to use the gym for which I needed an appointment!! I walked out as I couldn't be bothered, I know how to use a treadmill!

I will be joining an exercise class this week, so didn't want to commit to the gym. Step aerobics is on tomorrow night (£5 per lesson)  how expensive is that! No wonder people don't really exercise. But I'm seeing it as an investment to  a new life.

Sparkilinglime, I know what you mean about not being "me" again. But to be fair, most of the time we spend dashing around, doing the jobs of lots of people, cook, cleaner, DIY etc etc  that we rarely get a second to ourselves. It is no wonder we don't feel ourselves as we're probably not ourselves, we are so busy learning new roles.

Also, I'm guessing you have had a few knocks, but being a single parent you don't get the time to get over them really as you just have to carry on. It's much easier to get back to being yourself again when you have support and time.


Posted on: September 5, 2010 - 8:13am



Sorry but I had to giggle at your counsellor telling you his problems, that's like something out of a Woody Allen film : )

Gyms have to do that show you the apparatus thing for insurance reasons, blame the Americans and their culture of errr... blame for that one.

I do : )

You should get a bike, rather than pay £5 for the privilege of being shown how to step on and off a bench in time to music : ) I've lost three and a half stone odd in just over a year from cycling... and drinking less wine, which is actually more difficult than cycling : )

Mind you, you don't get to socialise much on a bike, though having said that this chap at a cafe at Llyn Ogwen remembered me the other day and I've not been there all summer and he looked at me and said milk no sugar? I was chuffed that he recognised and remembered me, and I do bump into people from time to time and stop for a chat, I bumped into this one chap I've not seen for about twenty years, he too was trying to cycle himself thinner and younger.

So you do get to meet people I suppose.

Posted on: September 5, 2010 - 8:50am

Parenting specialist DoppleMe

Hello tower of strength

I am utterly shocked about your experiences of counsellors. I am a counsellor myself and confidentiality is sacrosanct...and whilst it is occasionally appropriate for a counsellor to disclose some stuff about themselves, it is only with the purpose of helping the client. I had a bad experience of a counsellor myself some years ago (he was eventually struck off) so I do sympathise.

It sounds as if you are trying out new things anyway, do let us know how you get on. Are there any more "fun" gyms locally? I go to a women only one that is really friendly and non-competitive. The two franchises I have heard of are Ladies Workout Express and Gymophobics, but I am sure there will be more.

Posted on: September 5, 2010 - 9:18am


Hi tower of strength,

I too am a bit horrified by your experience with the counsellor...your right it takes such a lot of strength to build up to something like that!

It's worth considering that there are many different schools of counselling and different levels of qualification, if it felt like something that might work for you then it might be worth seeking out a counsellor you felt you could trust?

It sounds like you feel quite let down by your old friends, but its great that you feel ready to meet new people. A friend of mine did a short DIY course (after her divorce she was terrified of things breaking in the house) and it was brilliant. Dance classes can be good too if your into exercise.


Posted on: September 5, 2010 - 8:25pm


If I was still able to go up and down ladders, I'd love to do a DIY course.  I have a drill and so much that I could put up using it - like curtain rails...  That would be such a good course to go up.

Don't they have courses especially for women for things like this in some areas?  I'm sure there was car maintenance one her not so long ago.

Posted on: September 6, 2010 - 6:13am

Parenting specialist DoppleMe


The computer course sounds a bit stressful? Having to get home and then out again and then travelling through undesirable areas? Good for you though, it sounds as though you are taking on this project, of getting out and meeting new people, by the horns!

How old are your teens? Are there any weekends that they pile off to their friends so you can go rambling?

I joined a gym once, went through all the induction procedures, but got really fed up with super slim people with their groovy gym kits and ipods attached to their arms, that I decided that it wasn't for me!

Being a single parent you don't get the time to get over the hard knocks really as you just have to carry on - Well said towerofstrength!

Posted on: September 6, 2010 - 4:36pm


Hi Sparklinglime,

I could really use a DIY course too, my drilling skills are woeful and probably rather dangerous...hmmm similar to my gardening skills then really.


Posted on: September 7, 2010 - 2:22pm


thanks everyone for your comments. I had bad day in work today, PMT added to it so these comments have really lifted my spiritsCool

I went to an exercise class on Monday, my legs are still aching lol. I will definitely go again, although will choose the new class that starts next Monday.  As I get working tax credits I get reduced price. I'm not sure how much  but it all helps.

There is an older woman there who is going to the new class so at least I will know one face.

Helen T and Louise, I know I have only had experience of 3 counsellors, which I know isn't typical of all counsellors, but I haven't got the courage to try again just yet. i have huge problems with trust anyway.

I love the idea of a DIY course, they are quite expensive though! £250 for a weekend plus I need to travel there. Does anybody know of a different way I can find out as I just googled it quickly for my area. Maybe I'm not looking in the right places

The IT course may be stressful but it would be great for my job, as I want to change jobs. It isn't for a few months yet so I will have time to sort out the practical issues, travel etc. In other words I'll end up leaving it to the last minute and have a panic then lol

Posted on: September 8, 2010 - 5:53pm


A DIY book, hehe

Posted on: September 8, 2010 - 6:59pm


sadsy started a diy thread, didn't he?


Louise!  Anna!  I know I should look, but have scouty stuff I have to do, and I still have a fuzzy head...  Is there a 'search' for the diy thread please?

Posted on: September 8, 2010 - 10:11pm

Parenting specialist DoppleMe

Your wish is our command, sparkling lime. Click here for the DIY thread and we can revive it!

Posted on: September 9, 2010 - 7:46am

Parenting specialist DoppleMe

Hello tower of strength

Well done on the exercise class! No wonder your muscles are aching.

As far as the courses go, you have already googled it. How about giving your local library a ring and asking them for contact details of all the adult education classes in your area? You could also contact your local college direct as they sometimes offer this sort of thing, good luck

Posted on: September 9, 2010 - 8:03am


Thank you Smile

Posted on: September 9, 2010 - 8:20am

Parenting specialist DoppleMe

Hi towerofstrength

You could have a look at the WEA website or Google 'womens community courses and your locality'?

Let us know if you do find anything.  The library sounds like a good idea too.

Regarding the counsellors, I went through 3 different ones over the years, one used to cry every time I said anything about my life (my life hasn't been that bad, honest!), one just wanted to talk about my relationship with my dad, it turned out her and her husband had just split up and she was really concerned how her grown up children would deal with it! And another who just couldn't really support me!

However I ended up getting referred to an NSPCC counsellor for 6months that turned into 18, then the project closed down, but I can honestly say, she really helped my change my life.  Counselling may not be for you at the moment, but don't close that book entirely, I know many people who have found the right person after a few hiccups!

Enjoy your exercise class tonight!  Are you still going?

Posted on: September 13, 2010 - 3:37pm


What brilliant advice Anna! Sometimes I guess it just needs to be the right time and the right person to make a difference.


Posted on: September 13, 2010 - 5:29pm


The exercise class wasn't on last night, which is a shame as I was really looking forward to it. I will go again next week.

One issue I have with finding "me" again is that I feel stretched all over the place so am letting my kids down. I know it's a balancing act that I have got to be happy in myself, but I feel guilty if I leave the kids home alone for too long.

I work but I'm also studying at home too. This is very intensive at the minute, so the house is not as tidy as I'd like. I've barely had time to cook a nice roast meal too. I have to leave them alone after school, plus I'm going out this week with work.

I will do this computer class as I need it for work. (I want a new job) I think though I will put other courses on hold for now as I'm aware of being away from home too much. the exercise class is only 10 minutes walk away whereas other courses I need to travel.

Hard isn't it? Trying to keep everyone happy.

The WEA and DIY classes will go on my "to do list" when i get more time lol


Posted on: September 14, 2010 - 5:27pm


I know what you mean...

DIY would be an excellent one to do!

Posted on: September 14, 2010 - 8:15pm


Hopefully, my class is on tomorrow night. I've eaten too much  junk this weekend so really need a good workout lol.

I have been invited to a birthday party Smile, in a hall which has been hired for the birthday. i will be going alone, but am scared of walking into the hall as I know I won't know many people. I may know 4 people, who will be bringing their partners. Cry

Any tips for me? Obviously, I will go because I have said yes, and I have no other plans. But I don't know what to wear, or if it's Ok to go alone. How do other people cope as I'm sure I'm not the only person to do this.

I would feel OK if everyone was strangers, but people in a party tend to sit around in groups of people that they know. Or am I just worrying and making that up?

I'm also a quiet person, so get on well with people one to one, but in a group situation I don't say anything at all.  A girl in work was saying this week that she hates speaking to quiet people as there are too many awkward silences! The week before she also said quiet people are boring.  She is one of the people who may be going.

Although I'm scared, I will go.

i want to wear something nice, but have no idea as I live in jeans. Also, do I need to wear make up? I think mine has expired it has been years since I wore it!!

Posted on: September 26, 2010 - 10:35pm

Parenting specialist DoppleMe

Hello tower of strength

A party, how exciting (and how scary too).

You say that one of the more daunting aspects is walking in on your own and I know what you mean. Maybe you could ask one of the couples you know if you could arrive with them, just so you do not have to walk in on your own.

The girl at work must have limited powers of conversation herself if she leaves awkward silences lol. Quiet people make the best listeners! Many people just like talking about themselves and the trick is to just ask them lots of open questions, or say things like "tell me about your trip to X" or even pretend to recognise someone "Where do I know you from? Do you go to X?" and then they say no, and you say "what other things are you involved in?" and when they say jive dancing or the PTA you can ask them about that. There is likely to be music and so you would only be able to talk with one or two people at a time anyway.

As for clothing, you could ask the person whose party it is what the dress code is, you might be able to keep your jeans and just get a party-type top. There is no obligation to wear makeup, you could invest in a new lipstick and mascara if you want to. The Body Shop will do you a product demo and show you what suits your skin etc, if you want some professional help, you have to book in advance, I personally found them better than the posh make up counters at a department store. But if you would rather wear no make up then that is fine too.

Let us know how you get on!

Posted on: September 27, 2010 - 11:56am


Hi towerofstrength. The party I'm sure will be lovely, and you'll have a great time, but of course you are worrying about all sorts of things now. Understandable too. As Louise suggested, could you arrive with one of the couples that you know? I'm sure they wouldn't mind in the least, or you could arrive at the party dead on time, so the hall isn't too full Wink Other alternative could be, ask the person whose party it is, if perhaps you could take a friend, it doesn't have to be of the opposite sex. Do you have anyone that you could ask? There will be music so I wouldn't worry too much about the flow of a conversation, just make small talk, and you'll find it soon takes off. As for the clothes, I would panic on this one too, as I only have jeans, and trousers that are years old! Could you perhaps borrow something from another friend maybe, or how about boot sales! (Not sure when the party is)

As for the remark that your work mate made, ignore her, plain and simple. Not worth losing sleep over someone like her. Maybe she is too boring to even speak to anyway Laughing

Posted on: September 27, 2010 - 12:57pm


I recently went to a wedding of some friends of mine - I did everything I could to get out of it, but they wouldn't hear of it!

I did walk in on my own, but luckily spotted a couple I knew, and who I knew were aware of my circumstances.

It was a good day, and I even bopped!

It did take a lot of courage.

I agree with the others, in going along with someone you do know.  I wouldn't worry too much if they are a couple either, as from what I noticed in this wedding, the couples did seem to join in with everyone and not stay together. (If that makes sense)

Posted on: September 27, 2010 - 3:22pm


Sparkling lime, how did you manage to get through the door alone when you didn't want to go. I'm sure it would have been easier to get a mystery illness on the day lol So where did the courage come from?

I don't have anyone to ask  to go with me, (which I why I posted) as the invite is from someone I vaguely know. I will only vaguely know a few other people too. As I need to make new friends I don't think I should turn it down.

Once I am there, and the wine is flowing I will be OK lol. I do think most people prefer a good listener, which people like when they have had a few drinks!

I think I will treat myself to some new clothes and a bit of make up. Just lipstick and eye shadow, nothing too much though. Just enough to look like I have made an effort but not too much that I look overdone and uncomfortable.  

I will definitely consider the Body Shop as that is less daunting than posh shops. I still feel intimidated though by the Body Shop assistants as they are so young there. I don't feel i have the courage to do that yet.

The party starts at 8pm in a social hall. I think it would be easier getting there right at the start, rather than later. If I go later, I would be terrified of walking inside in case it was busy and I couldn't see these acqaintances. If I go early, I will look like an alcoholic lol but it would be easier. What do you think?

i wish I had someone to go with, but I don't. But that is why I posted, I do need to make new friends and have to take every opportunity I can.


Posted on: September 28, 2010 - 9:51pm

Parenting specialist DoppleMe

Hello tower of strength

Do you feel you don't know these couples well enough for you to ask one of them to arrive with you?

You said a birthday party? I was just wondering if it was worth thinking about an activity you could be doing, like asking everyone who attends to sign a small book for the birthday person (a huge card would be an encumberance all night!) or you could take your camera along and say you are taking photos as a memento for the birthday person. In fact once the party gets going you don't have to bother about it, it just gets you through the first bit. Or how about introducing yourself to the DJ and saying you will ask around for any requests etc. All these things give you an excuse to talk to people, and something to talk about.

I know what you mean about the Body Shop, but when I went in I just acted a bit naive, they loved showing me the different things and what they looked like on me.

Posted on: September 29, 2010 - 7:08am


I took a deep breath and walked in.  I also though of how much I'd paid for my trousers and top (about £70!!!!!!!) so I had to really.

I did spot someone I knew though, and latched onto them.  I mingled a bit otherwise as there were a couple of others I knew too.

For me it was a big achievement.

Posted on: September 29, 2010 - 2:36pm


phew! have just read the whole post.

hello towerofstrength,

I think you are fantastic for going to this party on your own, you will be so pleased with yourself for doing it & everyone has some good suggestions.

goodluck & i hope you have a great time.

Posted on: September 29, 2010 - 2:55pm

Parenting specialist DoppleMe

Hi TowerofStrength, when is the party?  I feel nervous and excited for you! Is it this weekend?

When I go to things on my own, I always plaster a small smile on my face, a kind of 'I know something you don't know' look! .....I am not trying to be deceitful, just want to look as though I have other stuff going on in my life!  

I tell myself how happy I am that I am independent and in control of my life and I don't live with someone that tells me what to do! 

Another trick I have heard of is think of someone you know that is confident and you admire and respect, then when you walk into the party pretend you are them!

Also, remember if there are people there who don't know you, they will have no idea whether your 'other half' is also at the party, working abroad, or at home looking after the children while you go out!

Aside from all of that though, be you and be proud of being you!

Did you get some new clothes?  What did you buy?

Posted on: October 1, 2010 - 10:01am


Hi TowerofStrength,

I have a sneaky suspicion that there are lots of us who find parties really daunting...but it is a great chance to meet other people and get out without the kidsLaughing.

I don't know if you have a mac shop or counter near you but they do make up demos too. Also if you have a bit of time before the party then you could do a body shop evening with some friends, that way they come to you and do the make over and they are very nice and helpful because they want to sell you stuff.

My kids always have a halloween disco at thier school where parents have to stay, I find it really difficult as some of the parents are a bit snooty and don't talk to me (I am one of those scandalous young mums!), I always try to remember that there must be loads of other people who are nervous like me and also that there is not reason on earth why other people shouldn't like me, I am a person not an alien!

I'm sure you look gorgeous in your new clothes. How long until the party?


Posted on: October 1, 2010 - 7:44pm


I think I will try sparklinglime's tip, of having an expensive outfit to wear! That will be a lovely excuse to spend money on myself, something which I also haven't done for ages.   The dresses on the Next website are gorgeous, so I think I will treat myself to one. I can get cheaper shoes and bag in the market lol.

I haven't decided on the make up yet. But the party isn't for 4 weeks yet, so I will think about that another week.

I like the idea of a card or taking photos. My camera doesn't work, but I can afford a card.

As part of my making new friends drive, I have been going to an exercise class. But my period was really heavy and I leaked all over pale jogging bottoms. Embarassed

The clots were too much for my mooncup so I leaked. The first time in years. I'm not sure if anyone saw but I don't want to go back now. Can hard exercise cause clots?

Posted on: October 6, 2010 - 9:59pm


I'm not sure whether hard exercise can cause clots or not...

Don't not go back though.  I think its something that does happen from time to time - and it would be so sad to not go after taking those first steps.

I hadn't really thought about make-up and ended up borrowing my daughter's mascara!  Tut.


Posted on: October 6, 2010 - 10:53pm

Parenting specialist DoppleMe

Hi tower of strength

Aha a new dress from Next, that sounds just the ticket.

As for the period business, I know it is a bit embarrassing but we have all been there. As far as I know, exercise does not cause clots but it can increase the menstrual flow. Do please go back to your class, you were enjoying it apart from this and you won't have the period thing to worry about for the next couple of weeks anyway! I appreciate that if you are using a mooncup then you probably don't want to buy any run of the mill sanitary towels but you could think about getting a couple of reuseable cotton ones to wear as well as your mooncup when you are exercising? Click here to see one company that makes them.

Posted on: October 7, 2010 - 7:31am


Louise I was using sanitary towels and a mooncup!  I read that clots are when there is a lot of menstrual flow, so my heavy exercise must have increased my usual heavy flow and therefore caused the clots.

As if we don't have have enough to do without stupid periods!!

I don't use re-usable towels and I will look into that. How are they kept clean?

I'll see how I feel next week. I know if it happened to someone else I wouldn't even care, so maybe I'll feel a bit stronger next week.

Posted on: October 7, 2010 - 8:25am

Parenting specialist DoppleMe

Hi tower of strength

It's good that you can recognise you wouldn't think anything of it if it was someone else. You could always go to the class three weeks out of four if you feel a bit uncomfortable.

The re-useable sanitary towels have to be washed, I think, a bit of a soak in a separate special container and then in with the normal washing. My friend and her daughters use them and really, it is only what previous generations of women did. I mentioned it because I thought you might prefer natural things if you use a mooncup.If you do have a problem with it being heavy it might be worth checking with your GP, especially as you are younger.

Posted on: October 7, 2010 - 10:16am


I like the idea of reusable towels, but on a practical level I think it's another job for me to do.  Cotton though would be good for me as I always get thrush, so I'll keep it in mind.

It's so much hassle getting a GP appointment, I'll leave it until I have something serious and bring it up then. In the meantime, I won't do an exercise class when I have my period!

I'm on my lunch break now, but everyone is talking about their weekend plans. Mine will be busy, (study and cooking) but nothing exciting. The weeks are hard working, just being so busy. The weekends are hard as they are lonely. Can't win! This weekend I don't feel like being alone. But I have had other weekends like this and have survived, so I will cope.

Posted on: October 8, 2010 - 12:59pm

Parenting specialist DoppleMe

Yes you will, and you can always drop in here and let us know how it is going.

When you say you are cooking do you mean the usual dinners or are you having a big baking session?

Posted on: October 8, 2010 - 2:07pm


I got up early on a Sunday morning to enjoy reading the internet in peace with a cup of tea. Then the kids get up immediately, and my peace is gone. Typical isn't it lol. so I'm typing this while they are making breakfast as I don't want them to see this post.

By cooking I mean the usual dinners. I really should make a big batch, but when I try, I burn the lot, have lost all my spare empty containers etc. I really do need to consider making meals for two days as it's so time consuming cooking every day. I ask the kids to cook one day a week, but they will sometimes play football, or see their friends after school on impulse so they are not always here to cook a meal.

I asked the boys to help me with shopping last night, and they refused. So I'm not cooking them anything until they come and help me. I really can't be bothered with being strong on thsi but I have to





Posted on: October 10, 2010 - 8:43am

Parenting specialist DoppleMe

I think that's a brilliant idea to go on cooking strike, I do things like that with my 16 year old and when he says I don't want to go shopping, I say d'you know, neither do I, let's not bother eh, we don't need any tea tonight.

Know what you mean about the bulk cooking, it's a good idea in principle but difficult to do. I am using up things in the fridge to make a casserole today, will do it in the slow cooker, bacon, carrots, swede and will stick onions in it as well. I am thinking it will be too much for two of us so may actually get some frozen. One freezer tip is to buy some large poly bags and then line a plastic box with it and put the food in the bag. Once frozen, remove the bag from the box and the box is available for the next bag of stuff. However, label what you have, I got caught out once, serving Sunday lunch, potatoes, veg and a pie that turned out to contain......apples  Smile

Shame you didn't get the peace you were expecting this morning. I always think teenagers seem to take up a lot of space, somehow, about twice as much as their own body size. My friend says that about her daughter as well so it is not just boys.

Hope your day goes well Wink

Posted on: October 10, 2010 - 9:32am


I always mean to freeze food, but the gannets seem to eat it all...

Posted on: October 10, 2010 - 10:51am


I do find feeding the kids the most stressful thing about being a parent. I suppose I'm quite lucky really if that's the most stressful thing. But if I lived alone I would happily live on toast and baked potatoes. That's just a starter for my kids!! Tonight they each had 2 and a half bread rolls and a tin of soup, followed by roast chicken, 4 potatoes, veg and pasta, followed by ice cream and 4 doughnuts. That was an easy tea using the leftovers from last night's meal: a roast chicken for 6 people and 5kg bag of potatoes. They are both skinny too, but active so burn it all off.

I do like the slow cooker , it's great coming home from work knowing a meal is ready. Although the kids don't like the meals from there!! I will try and use that more

Posted on: October 10, 2010 - 9:45pm

Parenting specialist DoppleMe

Sparkling lime and I have got plenty to say on the topic of teenagers eating a lot!

My own top tip for filling them is pasta, as in a mountain of it, but it looks as if you have cottoned on to this already. It is the expense as well! I was laughing on another thread a couple of weeks ago, when son put on his Facebook "My mum says I am not full after my enormous tea she is going to take me to the doctor's"

Some protein foods, such as meat and fish, are expensive so think about beans, lentils and eggs in this category and IF they like vegetables, homemade soup including a tin of tomatoes. It's not worth spending too much on bread either, when it disappears at a rate of knots.

Posted on: October 11, 2010 - 6:04pm


Oh yes, lots of pasta eaten here!

Posted on: October 11, 2010 - 7:05pm


Do your kids eat pasta plain?

I have taught mine to make pasta, tuna mayonnaise salad which they say is gorgeousSurprised Or they eat it plain, how boring! They won't eat eggs, lentils or beans. I have tried homemade soup but they don't like it, maybe it's the way I cook it  lol. 

I hate kids food, but I'm not prepared to make lots of separate meals. So meals are a bit stressful.

They do eat mild chicken curries, roast meals and sausages  and bacon. They have expensive taste.



Posted on: October 12, 2010 - 9:58pm

Parenting specialist DoppleMe

Oh yes, they all have expensive tastes! I think one of the hardest things is trying to find things that everyone in the house likes.

That's good that they eat plain pasta, my boys will happily have it as a side dish with anything and I buy Value pasta sauce jars from Morrisons, very cheap and can do a whole meal with that sauce, vast amounts of pasta, chopped bacon and some onion. A few frozen peas and/or mushrooms can be added if they will tolerate it.

Posted on: October 13, 2010 - 7:26am


My youngest boys like pasta and gravy (make it using granules).  My youngest is so fussy though!

Posted on: October 13, 2010 - 8:35am

Parenting specialist DoppleMe

Oh I have never heard of gravy and pasta. Bit like spag bok without the meat though, isn't it?

Posted on: October 13, 2010 - 10:34am


youngest is VERY fussy!

Will have meat from the casserole, but none of the veg.  Hates mash potatoes (and I make the best mash in the whole world Cool ) so he has pasta then too, with the gravy!

Posted on: October 13, 2010 - 5:04pm