10 (non-grief) things about me

I’ve been inspired by fellow baby loss mamas Baby Boy Blue and Expecting the Unexpected to share things about myself that are outside of my grief about Hugo.

These lovely ladies’ posts have been very resonant with me, and I’ve been toying with writing my own ’10 facts’ post for the past couple of weeks. I often have a difficult time thinking about much besides Hugo. After yesterday’s melancholy moment I thought it would be a good opportunity to think about the rest of my life – and share it with you all, too.

So, here goes, in no particular order of importance.

1. My favourite food

Ooh, where to start? I like so many kinds of food – Japanese, Thai, and Indian are particular favourites.

I was a veggiesaurus for many years. I eat some meat now, mainly white meat but I can take it or leave it.

Make me a caramelised onion and goat’s cheese tart, with a side of sweet potato chips and a proper salad (by ‘proper’ I mean lots of vegetables with taste and flavour, not a bit of limp iceberg with a quarter of a watery tomato) and I will love you forever.

I’m also particularly partial to chocolate, cake and ice cream.


2. My favourite book

I love reading, and there are so many books to choose from. My favourite authors include:

Haruki Murakami – what an imagination. I love how the protagonist always seems to go ‘meh’ when all sorts of weird stuff happens. I’ve pre-ordered his next book.

Iain Banks – incredible books, such a diverse range of stories, what a storyteller.

Walter Moers – laugh-out-loud silliness. He defies the stereotype of Germans having no sense of humour.

William Gibson – I love his early cyberpunk work. His most recent books have been disappointing, though.

Hans Fallada – he was writing before and during the Second World War. His contemporary accounts of life during the Weimar Republic, hyperinflation and the struggles of ordinary Germans offer a fascinating insight in to how the Nazis were able to come to power. Alone in Berlin also describes ordinary Germans’ resistance to the dictatorship and relentless persecution.

My Kindle features in the photo – I love books and never thought I’d get on with a Kindle, as I described in this old post. Yes, I’ve donated old books to the local charity shop. I love my Kindle, because it means I can read anywhere without doing my back in carting around heavy books.

Some of my favourite books - and my Kindle.

Some of my favourite books – and my Kindle.


3. My favourite film

Again, so many to choose from. I can never resist watching Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure, no matter how many times I have watched it. Star Wars Episodes IV, V and VI too. The first three are rubbish. I’m looking forward to seeing what the new films will be like.

I also like LA Confidential, The Lives of Others, Goodbye Lenin and Proof (a small Australian film about a blind photographer, featuring a young Russell Crowe – and Hugo Weaving, before he became an elf. I guess that name had been in my subconscious for a long time).


4. Favourite TV programme

Martin and I like bingeing on box sets. There’s no way you can wait a whole week  for the next episode when so many end on huge cliff hangers!

Our favourites have included The Wire, Breaking Bad and The Returned. We’re currently on series three of Parks and Recreation. Very light-hearted, funny, and clever too.

I’m also on series three of Game of Thrones. I devoured the books last summer – they’re not the best-written, but George R.R. Martin is an incredible story teller. The technique of using a different character’s point-of-view in each chapter kept me turning those pages.

Series two confused me a bit because a few of the storylines were changed – understandably so, otherwise each episode would be five hours long because of the complexities of the storylines. I do enjoy the TV series for its own sake, and it is very well cast.


4. Where have I travelled to?

Twelve years ago, Martin and I went backpacking for two years. We started with a month in Sri Lanka, followed by Singapore, Tioman Island (a little jungle island off the coast of Malaysia) and Indonesia.

We had working holiday visas for Australia and New Zealand – we spent a year in Oz and nine months in beautiful Aotearoa. I had a range of temp jobs and I worked in the Sydney Opera House, which was an incredible experience. On the way back from NZ, we had a few days in Hong Kong.

Other travels have included San Francisco and a greyhound bus trip up to Seattle; Paris, Brussels, Berlin, the French Alps, Barcelona, Malta, Majorca and Copenhagen. We like doing city breaks around Europe.

I love travelling

I love travelling


5. Any bad habits?

Hmm. I’m very untidy. I also pick my cuticles – it’s a bit of an unconscious thing.

Martin would probably say shopping. I have a penchant for pretty dresses, shoes and handbags.

I’m also a terrible grammar pedant. It’s entirely possible that I’ve corrected misspelt signs and misplaced apostrophes – I’m not telling.

I just want to shout: “Apostrophes should only ever be used to demonstrate possession or an abbreviation (such as you are – you’re). They should never be used in plurals!” and “Please learn the difference between your and you’re, as well as there, their and they’re.”

It would save me getting even more grey hair. Thank you.


6. What’s my idea of a perfect night in?

With Martin, a takeaway, a bottle of Rioja, some chocolate and a good film.


7. A strange fact about me

I have dyscalculia. At school, I was told I was stupid and clearly wasn’t working hard enough at maths – even though I got top grades in subjects like English and history.

Put simply, dyscalculia is to numbers what dyslexia is to words. Even basic mathematical methods mean little to me; I regularly transpose digits, while games involving strategy go over my head.

This archived post explains more about it.

My difficulties with numbers may go some way to explaining how anal I am about good spelling and grammar.


8. Favourite colour

My overall favourite colour is purple. I love bright colours in general though. See the photo of the dresses in my wardrobe.

The array of bright colours of the dresses in my wardrobe.

The array of bright colours of the dresses in my wardrobe.


9. My hobbies

Reading, watching films, drinking wine with friends, writing my blog, going for long walks, shopping for pretty dresses. Talking about Hugo!


10. What am I passionate about?

Good books, good films, good wine, good chocolate. My friends and family.

My blog. Raising awareness about things that are important to me.

Hugo, and his legacy.

My beautiful boy

My beautiful boy

Brilliant blog posts on HonestMum.com

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0 comment on 10 (non-grief) things about me

  1. mrshsfavouritethings
    April 24, 2015 at 8:56 am (7 months ago)

    What a lovely post. It is wonderful to know more about the gorgeous Leigh. Hugs Mrs H xxxx

    • Leigh Kendall
      April 24, 2015 at 10:14 am (7 months ago)

      Thank you, gorgeous Mrs H xxx

  2. Honest Mum
    September 28, 2014 at 1:02 pm (1 year ago)

    Gorgeous post and so lovely to discover more about you, great film choices and love purple too and those scarves are stunning, you’ve travelled so much too-nothing more wonderful than seeing the world! #thlist xx

    • Leigh Kendall
      September 28, 2014 at 3:44 pm (1 year ago)

      Thank you lovely, I’m glad you enjoyed finding out more about me xxx

  3. You Baby Me Mummy
    September 27, 2014 at 7:22 am (1 year ago)

    Great to read more about you. It is good to focus on other things sometimes. I hope you enjoyed writing it. Thanks for linking to #TheList

    • Leigh Kendall
      September 27, 2014 at 1:00 pm (1 year ago)

      I did really enjoy writing it – it felt good to feel a little bit like myself again, if only for a little while. Thanks for your comment xxx

  4. bloggermummylauren
    September 26, 2014 at 10:23 pm (1 year ago)

    Wow, you are well travelled! What a fabulous experience, its something I would liked to have done but just never did. Maybe when I retire I can do a bit of travelling.
    Lovely to read a bit about you x

    • Leigh Kendall
      September 27, 2014 at 12:55 pm (1 year ago)

      Thank you! Hope you get to travel the world when you’re ready xxx

  5. sophieblovett
    September 26, 2014 at 2:05 pm (1 year ago)

    So lovely to find out a bit more about you! I love Haruki Murakami and Iain Banks too – in fact I think I’ve read everything they’ve written! x

    • Leigh Kendall
      September 26, 2014 at 7:39 pm (1 year ago)

      Thank you – lovely to know we have those fab authors in common! xxx

  6. Jenna
    September 26, 2014 at 1:25 pm (1 year ago)

    I’m a big fan of The Returned too. I can’t wait for the second series. Did you ever see the original film that the series was based on. Awful! :( x


    • Leigh Kendall
      September 26, 2014 at 5:28 pm (1 year ago)

      I didn’t know it was based on a film, but I now know to avoid it so thank you! So looking forward to the second series too xxx

  7. bettyallonby
    September 26, 2014 at 11:51 am (1 year ago)

    I’m with you on the box sets thing. I seriously cannot be doing with delayed gratification. I never watch anything weekly, apart from the Great British Bake Off and Location Location Location!



    • Leigh Kendall
      September 26, 2014 at 5:24 pm (1 year ago)

      Glad I’m not the only greedy box set devourer! Thanks for your comment xxx

  8. familyfever
    September 26, 2014 at 8:43 am (1 year ago)

    Lovely to find out more about you. I never thought I would be swayed by a Kindle either, but I love the flexibility of it! #TheList

    • Leigh Kendall
      September 26, 2014 at 7:37 pm (1 year ago)

      Thank you for reading more about me! xxx

  9. Victoria Welton
    August 2, 2014 at 10:57 pm (1 year ago)

    What a great way to remember you and your feelings and give yourself some ‘you’ time. Lots of lovely things to remember about yourself :) Thank you for linking to PoCoLo. Big love to you :) x

    • Leigh Kendall
      August 3, 2014 at 11:24 am (1 year ago)

      Thank you, it felt good to write xxx

  10. meghanoc
    August 1, 2014 at 10:34 pm (1 year ago)

    Love this! I love when people share what books they love- gives me future reading material!

    • Leigh Kendall
      August 2, 2014 at 10:37 am (1 year ago)

      Yes, you often find books you hadn’t heard of before. Would love to hear what you think if you read any of the books I’ve mentioned. xxx

  11. staceytangerineowlproject
    August 1, 2014 at 2:40 am (1 year ago)

    Love this! So nice to get to know a little more about you :) I may take a cue from you and the others you mentioned, so don’t be surprised by a future similar post. It’s good to see more of the person behind the blog!! XOXO

    • Leigh Kendall
      August 1, 2014 at 7:42 am (1 year ago)

      Thanks, Stacey – I’m looking forward to finding out more about you through your post xxx

  12. Misplaced Brit (@Misplaced_Brit)
    July 31, 2014 at 9:23 pm (1 year ago)

    My grammar is terrible! My spelling even worse! Actually, I think I’ve never been so nervous of writing a comment in my life!
    …On the other hand, I love chocolate, and that leaves me feeling that we may bond very well indeed.

    Thanks for linking to #brilliantblogposts …I see I’m going to have to stick around and discover more about your blog <3

    • Leigh Kendall
      July 31, 2014 at 9:26 pm (1 year ago)

      Haha! Bless you…oh yes, anyone who is friends with chocolate is a friend of mine too. Thank you for taking the time to read my post and comment xxx

  13. Ali
    July 30, 2014 at 8:01 pm (1 year ago)

    Hi Leigh, it’s lovely to find out a little more about Hugo’s beautiful mummy. #hugoslegacy xx

    • Leigh Kendall
      July 31, 2014 at 8:53 am (1 year ago)

      Thank you, you’re very kind xxx

  14. SuperBusyMum (@SuperBusyMum)
    July 30, 2014 at 7:44 pm (1 year ago)

    What a fab post and WOW you have been to some amazing places! I hope to travel one day as I don’t want to be a ‘home-bird’ all my life! Great post, thanks for linking up with #MMWBH x

    • Leigh Kendall
      July 31, 2014 at 8:53 am (1 year ago)

      Thank you – and I hope you have lots of fun travelling too xxx

  15. jasmineshei
    July 30, 2014 at 4:45 pm (1 year ago)

    Thank you for sharing this. I feel I know you more! I am envious of your closetful of colorful dresses!

    • Leigh Kendall
      July 31, 2014 at 8:52 am (1 year ago)

      Aw thank you! They do make me smile xxx

  16. afamilydayout
    July 30, 2014 at 3:11 pm (1 year ago)

    I love Haruki’s fiction books. Have just been reading his “What I think about when I’m running” book but finding his non-fiction harder to get into – much prefer reading about his unusual characters! Popped by from #madmidweekbloghop

    • Leigh Kendall
      July 31, 2014 at 8:51 am (1 year ago)

      I prefer his unusual characters too. I did enjoy reading about his dedication to running though. Thanks for stopping by xxx

  17. natzs1
    July 29, 2014 at 2:10 pm (1 year ago)

    This is lovely, Leigh. I hope it felt as good to write this as it is to read :)

    • Leigh Kendall
      July 29, 2014 at 3:44 pm (1 year ago)

      It did feel good to write. Hope you enjoyed it. Thanks for taking the time to comment xxx


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