Tag: MIL

Sunday Column (454)

This week was an awkward one. Somewhat anyway. I left the house on Monday, just as the installers of our new multigym arrived. My kids had their last day of holidays and went back to school on Tuesday. Daddy left Monday morning and came home late Tuesday night, important meetings with dinner/drinks in the evenings. I was home on Wednesday though, partly to make up for it, but mainly because I had a small surgery, removal of a mole, nothing big. Nothing serious. Yet with it all taken a bit shorter than anticipated, I managed to pick the kids up from school. That was nice. Those weeks make me think of what would it be like if I am not around at all. No, I am not afraid of dying, or that the mole might be cancerous, it is more about prevention. Hence the multigym, my runs, the diet. I want to be fit as long as possible to see as much as possible of my boys. Guide them, listen to them. Yet, and partly this is due to our choice of moving that far out of London, I often don’t see them. And with the three busiest travel/trade show

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Sunday Column (397)

I have been to Scotland over the last week. A long drive up, a short and delayed flight back. I love Scotland. It is a peaceful country. It feels kind of rough and you feel close to nature. Whether that is the rain, the cold or the rocks and trees. It is an outdoor country where you don’t necessarily have the weather to be outdoors much. So the coal and peat fires go on. The heat from the natural resources keep you warm. You are close to the heart of yourself, the earth and close to what’s happening deep inside this planet. We did a 25K run which was nice too. Very connected to the elements I have to say. That’s how I feel. I also felt a bit detached from civilisation. Whilst of course Tesco is still there, same products and offers, which gives you the consistency you are not necessarily longing for, there are a lot of new things. Paying with Apple Pay got a reply from the waitress that ‘this is the first time she has done this’ or looking at the mobile phone reception, you might think you are somewhere in the bush in South America.

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Sunday Column (303)

The last post of 2014. Christmas has passed and it was fantastic. I love my family and wife so much, it is unbelievable. I am very grateful for the happiness I feel when I am surrounded by them. That, I guess, is the biggest present I got this year. Being with them in the moment, enjoying quality time together and also being physically apart without being apart. Not much else to wish for! What else was great at Christmas? Long walks in the winter sun with our dog. It is amazing what a walk can do to relax and unwind. Particularly when you have lots of things going on. Even in the rain. Long walks, short walks. Then the catch up with friends and family members. As it is now tradition we had Turkey on Christmas Day and pulled pork the day after. Lots of wine, a new Japanese whisky from the MIL, a train set from Lego and lots of presents for the kids. Almost too many yet we kept it to closest family and friends. Madness nevertheless. From the 24th in the afternoon, just when the email came in that the last campaign would be set up, Christmas

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Sunday Column (218)

I often start with how quickly a week went. This one did. I went to a meeting on Monday despite the bank holiday and worked in the morning on some Central Europe related business. No rest for the wicked. Tuesday and Wednesday were busy with working on a project that finishes early June and Thursday I spent in town in meetings. This resulted in a late night, and a slow Friday finishing off what I had to do and attend to the family. Life is great if you are flexible to work but it also puts a lot of pressure on to get money in and feed the family. I have been discussing this with a few self employed people and came to the conclusion that it will be best to go back into full time employment soon. We shall see what the next few weeks bring. It seems that a few avenues open up and opportunities show themselves. I guess that only happens when you have time to let this happen. It doesn’t happen if you are tied down in the daily grind. My MIL (mother in law) arrived much to the joy of the kids. They just love

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Sunday Column (165)

What a fantastic week. I think so anyway. I went to Madrid on Monday to support our local office, interview for new people and had a very good and long meeting with one of our clients. I like to be useful and travel to support folk. It makes you tired and I didn’t see the kids, but overall I actually enjoy it. So I was back Wednesday night to find my MIL (mother in law) staying with us. In order for me to keep up my running training I slept on the couch to run at 6 am on Thursday. Friday I worked at home sitting in a conference call until late. I always seem to be busier working from home than being in the office; no idea why to be honest. What else happened? As my MIL was baby sitting my wife and I went to our most favourite Thai restaurant in Beckenham. The result was we were home within an hour. Conveyor belt service plus us feeling “too old” to mingle with the locals in the pub, meant we preferred to be home early. Saturday we used the whole day (!) to go shopping. I bought myself a

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Sunday Column (131)

What a fantastic week we had. Monday was bank holiday and little Colin and I went to pick up “nanny” from Kings Cross. He loved going on the train, then on the tube, then to Starbucks for a milkshake, and then of course meeting “nanny”. He is very taken by her, and loves her being here. It just shows that our decision to stay in the UK was the right one! So my MIL is staying with us, and she is helping us a lot. My wife and I went out for a meal on Friday night. We of course had some wine. After my detox I have been quite a lightweight. A glass on Tuesday night made me rather tipsy. Also, I lost interest in alcohol a bit, particularly beer. How long will that last for, I don’t know. We also got off on Saturday for a quick shopping spree in London whilst the MIL watched the boys. Fantastic! Rohan is getting cuter by the day. His blond hair and blue eyes get him a lot of attention. Whilst writing this post he is crawling backwards across the living room. Not long and he will be up to lots

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Sunday Column (130)

We are staying in the UK – I guess that sums it up. After weeks and months or mulling over the possibilities of eventually moving to the USA or Australia, we decided to stay put. This has mainly to do with us wanting to bring the kids up closer to their grandparents. So London, or greater London, is a great compromise for a Scottish lassie and a German lad. Now we might look into moving further out of London, closer to a good secondary school, and into a bigger place. But there is no hurry of course. Finally we are going to settle. Phew, as you can imagine there was quite a lot of thinking going on. I still consider an international career but that would be limited to travel rather than moving. At least for the time being and positions that might be coming up as far as we can judge it at the moment. Work wise this week has seen an increase in meetings and longer hours at my desk. Slowly but surely we are moving towards Q4 and Christmas. I cannot wait. Our space is very exciting! My 30 day challenge is coming to an end too.

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Sunday Column (81)

This week was busy. My mother in law stayed her third week and her boyfriend came as well. Her staying helped us a lot and we were glad she was here. However, I am also glad to have our house back to ourselves. We got our kitchen floor done this week too. This added to more stress, but luckily (or unluckily) I have been away with work a lot. I went to Leeds on Monday, not returning until very late, and also attended some webinars in the US which means long and late hours in front of this lovely laptop. Dreams: I want an HTC Desire Z. It is an Android powered super machine with a physical keyboard. Just a bit on the expensive side still but we shall see how prices will come down towards Christmas. I had several blasts from the past this week. Facebook made it happen for me to connect with my host sisters in the US who I haven’t seen since 1993. Also another friend from the US I haven’t seen since either, and it makes me wonder how modern technology helps you so much to share your life. But is it what you want?

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Sunday Column (81)

81 weeks ago I started my Sunday Column. Ideas, thoughts and general blurb from Volker Ballueder about all sort of things. It developed a bit into a “only column” as I got too busy keeping up to write a daily or bi-weekly post. Anyway, yesterday was 9/11. Now, as for many people, it is like it was yesterday that I heard about it. Sitting in a friends old Peugeot, he gave me a lift back from my pre-university maths course in Aberdeen, both of us entering the 3rd year, when the music in the radio stopped with the breaking news. I had been in the UK for less than a month. It was raining, cold and grey. And 9-11 had just happened. If you followed some of the news over the last few weeks, then you wonder. You wonder why a pastor in Florida wants to burn the Koran. Why would he? If he is a man of faith, as his title suggests, then he should be able to forgive. He should be able to foresee the consequences his action might have. Was it all a media stunt? If I say forgive, then I don’t mean “to not care” but

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Sunday Column (80)

Now, the week was short. Short in days but long in hours if that makes any sense. Or as a client of mine said “you fit all 5 working days into your 4 day week” – he is so right. So it is weekend now, still needing to catch up on a few bits but generally I am on top of things. That is not bad going. And, the sun is out too. Actually, the weather has been good the past few days. I don’t think it is “Indian Summer” yet, but more of a last few days of sun before autumn hits us in a week or two. This summer passed very quickly. Then I am struggling for good books at the moment. My boss recommended the Illuminatus Triology but I wasn’t too taken with it. I then read another Anthony Robbins book but didn’t find it much inspiring. Now what I need is to read something inspirational, spiritual, leadership oriented. So I am deciding between Tony Blair’s new book and maybe a Buddhist book. We shall see. I was discussing Tony’s alcohol comments with my MIL. Maybe not the best person to discuss it with but it seems

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