So, whilst I was already very thankful for my mum - who has been therefore me through everything I can possibly remember - I feel like I appreciate her a little more now. And it makes me miss her, because, whilst she is only a phone call away if I need some moral support, I no longer have her around to help with those really little things in life.
Education is something that most of us in the UK take for granted. We go to nursery as toddlers, move through primary and secondary education before deciding whether college and university are for us. Most of us even grumble about it, complaining about homework, early mornings, the lack of free time. But if we didn't have this opportunity, our lives would be completely different.
We were all so comfortable and content. I hope we can make it a tradition to build a blanket fort because it's simply, well just that, simple. It was such a relaxing, and easy way to spend a day. If you ever find yourself not knowing what to do on a lazy day, I highly suggest finding a couple of blankets, and friends to build your own fort.
Right through his life, Nilsson went on pouring his life and experiences into his lyrics, and there are few artists whose life can be traced, song by song, album by album, as graphically as his. His split from his second wife, his experiences of drugs and alcohol, and his final, fulfilled family life with his third wife Una...
Children are brilliant aren't they? They smile for no reason, dance in the street, cuddle strangers (even when advised otherwise), they say what they mean and they dream big. Children are a big deal at this year's Edinburgh Fringe. Comedy for children and children's theatre seem to be doing fantastically well.
As the world evolves, so humanity remains essentially emotionally the same. All of it crystallized in sharp relief within the hellish prison of childhood. I always said I'd never forget...and yet now I have children, I find myself getting annoyed because their drama doesn't meet my criteria for what merits hysterical crying and slammed doors.
Stone skimming nestles at number five on the new '50 things to do before 11 3/4' list published by the National Trust this week... Stone skimming, that timeless past time that generations have enjoyed. Whether you skim yours on a beach, lake or river the experience and emotions are the same. This is partly about accuracy and technique but it's also about pride and raw emotion.
I was once the perfect mother. TV time was strictly controlled, no sugary sweets would pass my little darlings lips, and there was absolutely no way they would be allowed to use iPads, iPhones, Xboxes, computers or any other internet connecting medium until they were mature enough to use them. Possibly not even then. Of course that was before I actually had any kids.
Stories about men as toxic, as bad boys, are so much part of the cultural lexicon, that when I lecture, audiences are sometimes perplexed by the idea of providing specific services for vulnerable men. This is despite explaining that thousands of men commit suicide every year in the UK, 4552 in 2011, three times the rate of women.
How can we protect ourselves from the pitfalls? Checking out is not an option: a life without girlfriends is a life deprived of a bond we cannot find anywhere else. Research bears this out: for both sexes, the biggest insulation against loneliness has been proven to come from strong emotional connections with women.
For Clare Morpurgo, who set up the educational charity Farms for City Children in 1976 with her husband Michael, the acclaimed children's author, the memories that have informed her life's work stem from the village of Iddesleigh in West Devon.
In every children's homes placement, there are many human factors to consider. Decisions as to how to meet the needs of the young people require experience, knowledge, training and know-how. Looked after children and children's homes deserve the support of their corporate parents, including you and me, engaging in complex public discussion rather than simplistic sensationalism.