Deb's Digest
Debbie Atkinson’s family life column, as featured in the Southport Visiter.

Monday, 29 March 2010


I've always told my husband that he shouldn't read the Daily Mail

Tuesday, 23 March 2010


A Christmas present to my husband was a ticket to see The Four Tops, The Temptations, The Drifters and The Three Degrees at the MEN. The show was on Sunday night and was a bit disappointing. The arena was less than half full;  the Three Degrees all had bad colds and let the audience take over for my favourite song "When Will I See You Again?" (I can sing it any old time - I wanted to hear them sing it); The Four Tops and The Temptations weren't as I remembered them and I had a 6ft 5in shaven-headed drunken idiot next to me who not only had to dance like a spinning top to every single song, be it fast or slow, but insisted on flailing his long baboon-type arms, narrowly missing my face on numerous occasions. But apart from that........ .... Actually The Drifters were very good but didn't sing "Under the Boardwalk" which my husband, as he later revealed,  had been looking forward to.



Today we have been married for 36 years - a lifetime. To celebrate we had a takeaway and I told my husband that I would order the same dish that I chose in the hotel on our wedding night. "Do you remember what that was?" I asked. "You tell me and I'll tell you if you're right," he replied. Fancy thinking I'd fall for that one after 36 years.

Friday, 19 March 2010


grad 4

Today our daughter was awarded her MSc in Chester Cathedral by the Duke of Westminster. A very proud day - this is the sixth graduation ceremony that we've attended as parents and we find it quite amazing that we have such clever offspring - especially when neither of us made it past A-levels.

My mother likes to keep me on my toes. "I've made myself a note to post a birthday card on Wednesday March the 31st, which is a Monday" she told me yesterday. "It can't be a Monday, Mum, if it's a Wednesday" I said - pretty sure that this would get me nowhere.   "Well, that's what my diary says."  Yep, I knew I was onto a loser.

Our daughter rushed through the front door on Wednesday, barely able to contain her excitement: "I've just seen Oscar sitting outside Bar Mio eating an all-day breakfast" she enthused. I had visions of our 17-month-old grandson wending his way through the village to our local wine bar and ordering a fry up. It turned out that he was with his other grandparents, and was dipping his toast into yummy bacon and eggs.

The London son enjoyed throwing his nephew up in the air when he was home at the weekend - almost as much as Oscar enjoyed it.


Tuesday, 9 March 2010


Lee Mack is now my favourite comedian. I've written off previous favourites, Jimmy Carr and Ricky Gervais due to their crudity. It's ages since I laughed uncontrollably - but Lee Mack was totally hilarious at The Lowry on Sunday night. And his take-off of the Mancunian walk and lingo was spot-on.



Today I took part in two hours of medical research at the Bio-Bank in Liverpool. I had to be there for 9.30am so set off in good time. I knew where I was going to park - I've parked there many times before. But for some inexplicable reason, this morning, in the middle of rush-hour city traffic, I got in the wrong lane at a roundabout and ended up going through the Mersey Tunnel to Birkenhead. This little detour cost me a £2.80 toll (£1.40 going and the same coming back!)

One of the readings they took while I was there was bone density. It was explained to me that this would be done by a machine which would pinch my heel. So why then, when asked if I had any wounds or open sores, did I mention a blister on my lip? When I realised that the nurse had been asking about wounds on my heel I couldn't stop laughing. The nurse's stony face made it seem even funnier - I'm just glad I won't be seeing what's written on my records.

Saturday, 6 March 2010


There have been a number of occasions over the past week or two when I've decided to sit here and update the blog.  But then something happens and it gets put on the backburner.

Last weekend we drove down to Kent for my aunt's 80th birthday celebrations and en-route a picture of Oscar popped up on my mobile - minus his curls. It's a shame but it had to be done - he'd been mistaken for a girl once too often.


minus hair

before and after

The 80th party was lovely and it was really wonderful to meet up with family members who we hadn't seen for years. My cousin had put together a slide show of old photos - set to music. As 70 of us watched a giant screen it seemed as if long-gone relatives were with us once again and at the end there was a long queue for the mirror to dab at the old mascara.

slide show

While in the area we visited Eastbourne (lovely pebble beach) and Rye where we had a lovely lunch in The Mermaid - an old smugglers' haunt.


Last night we were at a friend's 60th party at Royal Birkdale so I really think that's our social calendar complete for this year.

I've just let the London son know that I'm handing my letter-writing pen to him. We both wrote to the Sunday Times's Winner's Dinners last week. His letter is in today's top spot and mine's been binned. But I'm not bitter!

A late night last night, Lee Mack at The Lowry tonight and Oscar tomorrow. So Tuesday will be spent in bed.