Mr B topped the scoreboard with his engagement ring choice. He knew I’d lusted after a vintage ring and of course he knows my magpie ways towards diamonds so it's little wonder I didn't say "yes" but instead just screamed a lot when he produced my perfect 1930s ring from his pocket in a corner behind the Coliseum in Rome on New Year's Eve 2010.
Each and every birthday, Christmas or ‘just because’ day, I always buy Mini B a book.
No matter how nomadic his weekend routine becomes when he’s home with us (poor dude has it sorted all week at nursery then we turn it upside down of a weekend), how bad a mood he or we are in or how late we’ve bribed him up those stairs to bed - there's always time for a story before we turn out the lights and cross our fingers he won't see us again until morning.
Picture this familiar scene: you’re out and about with a bunch of toddlers (yours, someone else’s, whomever’s..) and everyone plonks the water beakers here there and everywhere before realising you’ve all got exactly the same blue or pink Tommee Tippee one. You wouldn’t mind except toddler Tom has been producing enough snot to power a car factory over the past few weeks and toddler Tilda is just getting over the chicken pox.
The last time I showed any interest in playing computer games was circa 1990, when my best friend and I used to hook-up our Game Boys and outwit each other on Tetris. If I even get a whiff of the Tetris music now, I start to see those annoying L-shape blocks dropping in front of my eyes like a bad dream I can’t escape – those were the buggers that always caught me out.
I’ll let you into a secret. I buy cheap hand soap and pour it into my now-empty Compagnie de Provence dispenser solely because I am a snob and it looks a lot nicer in the kitchen than the run-of-the-mill one on offer in Sainsbury’s. I’ve always been a fan of good-looking toiletries and bathware – it’s worth living on baked beans for a fortnight for some really amazing towels rather than scrimp and get the cheapo ones where they’re forever moulting like a hairy dog, leaving coloured fluff all over you in a manner akin to a nasty skin rash.
Mr B has only bought me three bunches of flowers in our entire relationship. This is not because he is a mean-fisted cold-hearted soul but because I have spent the past eight odd years drumming into him that I’m just “not that into” presents of the floral kind. Something about red roses (I can’t abide the colour red, it makes me angry/sad/annoyed all at once) or cheap petrol station lilies has always quashed the longing to be presented with a giant bouquet at any given anniversary.
At school I had a wonderful friend called Sally, with whom we used to play all kinds of bizarre games with sticks in the playground.
Later on, when we grew up a little bit and went to Sixth Form College, the entire student population got a job at the local Waitrose.
Back then the uniforms were a delightful brown and white striped sack, like convicts of the John Lewis partnership. Despite constantly fearing my teenage crush may walk past the shopping centre window and spy me dressed as a street urchin, we all had a laugh, as far as operating a till and shuffling packets of cornflakes can be and Sally was my fellow fiend on the checkouts.