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This weeks challenge is to write about our self expression, the exact words used were:

We all have an inborn need to express ourselves.  Most of us in the blogosphere try to do it with writing, but beyond writing there are so many forms of self-expression that we participate in daily.  Whether it be our gait, or the way we cook, the music we listen to, or the words we choose to use, we are constantly giving a little bit of ourselves to the world through our actions.  Tell us about one of your favorite ways to express yourself outside of writing.

This has made me ponder.  I was trying to think how exactly I express myself, is there anything particularly distiguishing that I do that someone would say if they saw someone else do it “oh that reminds me of Justine”.  I was also wondering how much we can attribute our character to our upbringing and how much is ‘just naturally inherent in us’.

I was a acutely shy child.  I hated going to parties be they any kind, in fact I hated meeting large groups of people for the first time or second and always felt incredibly out of place, like I didn’t fit in to whatever social circle they were supposedly in.  I was at boarding school for most of my life, yet I enjoyed for the most part latterly this experience.  I guess I am the type of person that has a handful of good friends, two or three best friends, the rest friends or acquaintances.

Growing up I used to enjoy spending time in my room, my mother used to constantly tell me off for this and said it was odd.  I used to paint, write stories, just generally daydream and make things up.  I was really quite content in my own company.

Otherwise in the village I used to go and visit old people, I did this out of the genuine pleasure I would get by sitting down and hearing their stories, though they would seem to find some pleasure in me being there in the first place.

Most of my friends were older than me, I didn’t really think I ‘gelled’ with children my own age, apart from the ones at boarding school.  Being at boarding school one would meet people from all walks of life and also various countries, this I used to find more comforting oddly than being surrounded by people of the same close knit social backgrounds.

Anyway I digress…the one thing I have always done it story-tell.

When I am comfortable enough around friends to speak up and talk about something that is ‘story’ based be it real or not, I always of course embelish it a little and find myself quite animated when telling it.

People for some odd reason find me quite funny when I am doing my storytelling, maybe it is the odd faces or waving of hands.  However, when I was a beauty therapist, I know for a fact many clients used to come in just to hear my ‘gossip’, which actually wasn’t about other people it was more that I would tell them some kind of story.

So with this in mind, I pass this on to my children.  I like to make up things about something really mundane.  You know an inanimate object that really would be considered rather unteresting.  Why does this have to be so?

I like to challenge myself to make up a story, a history that of course is not true about this object.  It isn’t exactly lying because it is a story and children soon enough work out what is real and what is not, but what is the harm in a bit of magic?

Let me indulge you in my most recent embelishment of an object:

004I emptied an old bag that had not been touched since my  mother passed away 8 years ago.  It was full of mine and my mothers things.

You will see it just looks like a black card or something.  At first i ignored it, then curiosity got the better of me.  It is in fact a nifty little gadget, it has as you can see a nail file, tweezers, toothpick, ruler, knife, some pointy thing and a flat disc that has ends that presumably take out screws etc.

005My children were lying on the bed and being naturally nosy they grabbed it.  I gasped as if in frightened horror and said “oh no you must not touch that” and took it back.

Eyes went wide watching me “why, why mummy it looks cool what is it?”

I said “it is very dangerous this, top secret, I am not sure I should tell you”.  Of course they were badgering me over and over to spill the beans, which is the effect I wanted.

I pulled out the nail file first “what is that mummy?”

I said “it looks like a nail file, but for special agents it is something completely different”

Eagerly they said “special agents, what do you  mean mummy, what else could it be used for”

I pointed to the book we are reading at the moment “you know we are reading Gangsta Granny by David Walliams, well you see that Granny was not the only granny who had a secret life”

001They gasped “you mean Grandma Pug?”  That was what we called my mother as she had a pug .

I nodded.  “you see the nail file it is for filing bullets and you see the tooth pick that is for picking locks”

I gave them a breather and watched their wonder. They started fidgeting, hands were twitching and I know they were repressing the urge to grab it off me.  I was lying on the bed with them at this moment, as it was bed time story time.

They pointed to the pointy thing “what does that do?”

I went wide eyed and said “what do you think?”  They gasped.

I pulled out the knife “whats that for mummy?”

I said “well of course it is for ham, if the restaurant forget the knife and give them just a fork”  They nodded.  I like to throw in a red herring occasionally.

Then it was time for the corker,  the flat disk.  “What is that mummy?”

I said “what does it look like?”  They said “I don’t know mummy”

I said “think of ninjas, this is a macro one, but deadly, throw this with the flick of your wrist and BAM the enemy is dead!”

The response was…..


They were then in complete revery of this little macro holder of womens things LOL….

But the way I look at it, they can have dreams, stories in their heads now about it, a little bit of magic, rather than a boring women’s utensil holder.  By tomorrow or the next day or whenever they will realize what it is, no harm done, just some gifts of pleasure, a little bit like “the tooth fairy”.

That is the way I portray my self expression.

Thank you as always for reading!

I hope you had a chuckle and don’t condone me for being a mad or bad mother!

Justine x

© Justine @ It’s a lonely place

Retro eclectic odds n sods-002 retro button Living in East Sheen (2)


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