Andrea Mara

Official website

Snapshot of a woman in a house

After 18 months of searching, fourteen thousand buckets of tears when we walked away from our old house, seven nail-biting weeks from “sale agreed” to “here are the keys”, and a month of almost-done refurbishment, we’re finally in our new house. And it’s bliss. Except for all the things that aren’t working yet, like the oven, the extractor fan, the microwave, the washing machine, the dryer, and the freezer. But it doesn’t matter, because we’re in! So here’s a snapshot of where we’re at:

What they’re eating

Well, they’re still eating the sugary cereals we were only going to have while living in my dad’s, because the youngest negotiated an extension. “We should be allowed have them until the house is finished,” he said, and at the rate things are going, he might be 25, living in a flat-share in town, and buying all the sugary cereals he wants by the time that happens.

What we’re cooking

Anything you can make on a hob, but which must be heatable-up without a microwave, for people who come in at different times. I have a repertoire of about two dinners. Today we’re going to McDonalds.

What I’m wearing

Runners (I still say runners, except when I’m with people I think might say trainers, then I say trainers) because our new walk to school is 25 minutes and shoes aren’t going to cut it. The kids haven’t complained yet, but I imagine they’re going to notice soon that it’s a bit longer than the “little over 10 or 15 minutes” I breezily anticipated.

And then, because I’ve had a Dundrum voucher burning a hole in my pocket since Christmas, and my longer school run gives me an excuse, I got some new runners. I mean trainers.

What we’re watching

Netflix! We got broadband recently, so although we don’t have “normal” TV yet, we do have Netflix. But, now I can’t figure out what to watch. We’re currently plodding through a fairly appalling Dutch-Belgian dubbed series called Undercover. It’s a crime show (partly) set in a campsite like the ones we go to each year, which is what reeled me in, and now I need to see what happens. But don’t watch it, it’s awful. Any recommendations, preferably crime/ mystery/ thriller/ twisty?

Edited to add: I’ve discovered why people rave about Schitt’s Creek – not remotely crimey or thrillery, but so much fun, and five full series to get through.

What I’m reading

The Scholar by Dervla McTiernan (Irish crime writer living in Australia, this is her second book, and it’s great so far). Prior to that, I read and loved Daisy Jones & The Six – completely different to any book I’ve read recently, and I loved it.


What I’m listening to

I am still obsessed with the Cormoran Strike books by JK Rowling writing as  Robert Galbraith. I’m on the fourth one now, Lethal White, and in my head, I’m best pals with Cormoran and Robin – they’re my constant companions on the (new, longer) school run.

What I’m drinking

Prosecco, at the school’s big summer night out! Hard won prosecco at that – one of my responsibilities was to buy six bottles in Lidl, and as it’s on our walk home from school, I figured I’d chance picking it up on the school run. All I was worried about was whether or not I could carry them (just about, with a few rest breaks) – what I didn’t factor in was how it would look – me walking home with six bottles of prosecco in my arms, the kids trotting along beside me carrying the bread and fruit we’d originally gone in to buy. Having said that, it tasted all the better for the epic journey, tired arms, and dodgy looks.

What I’m buying

Wall to wall Ikea. There is nothing left in Ikea, it’s all in my house.

What I’m smiling about

The new paperback edition of One Click – copies arrived here last week, and I’m biased, but I love the new cover. And I love the gin flavoured chocolate that came with the books. In fairness, when there’s no oven, and the kids are still eating the sugary cereals, you have to eat a lot of chocolate.


All credit to original snapshot post inventor Awfully Chipper!





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