Diary of a busy practitioner, juggling work and family somewhere in England. This week: the season of gratitude.  

Christmas is a time to look back over the year with gratitude. 


I am grateful to my secretary, for leaving of her own accord.

I am grateful that I now have both children at school. I eat lunch, go to the toilet and do all sorts of things in peace.

I am also grateful that, unless there is a major accident, I will not go through the trauma of having to send a child to school for the first time again.

I am actually grateful - in a small way - for Facebook’s part in the end of democracy, because if they hadn’t I wouldn’t have boycotted them, and I wouldn’t have realised that I don’t need that nonsense in my life at all. The end of democracy remains a small issue, granted.

However on Twitter, I am grateful for all sorts. I am grateful for WLAM, sharing stories of issues affecting other women and mothers in the profession in a very constructive way. I am grateful for Jess Phillips, Gina Miller, Carole Cadwalladr, Megan Rapinoe and Greta Thunberg who seem to have superhero strength when it comes to putting up with trolling and even death threats, not wavering in pursuing their aims - whether they be women’s rights, defending the rule of law, or the apparently highly controversial subjects of looking after the planet and playing football. I am very grateful to @manwhohasitall who makes me laugh out loud.

I am grateful that, thanks to Legal Twitter, I am now a published chef and my recipe is in a book on the shelf of Nigella Lawson.

I am grateful to the commenters who thought, from my description, that my mum had dementia which caused both outrage and much laughter at home. I reiterate, she’s just a bit odd.

I am always grateful to learn something every day, on one particular day recently finding out that narwhals are not mythical creatures.

I’m grateful that, despite Deceptively Angelic Child (DALC) 2’s declaration on the first day of the summer holidays that she had fleas ('LOADS OF THEM!'), she did not. We also continue to escape nits.

I am grateful to my firm, which continues to be forward-thinking and sensitive to issues from flexible working to mental health. I am grateful for the interesting work I have had come my way and the new experiences this work has given me. I am grateful no one has asked me to increase my hours now the kids are at school. I am not grateful to the probate registry, whose chaos and delays have had a significant effect on our billing this year, nor am I grateful for the residence nil rate band.


But I am mostly grateful that I have been able to say words from 'g*t' to 'trigraph', talk about elasticated waist skirts, quote Jerry Springer and spell out the word 'twit' using the NATO phonetic alphabet, all I would think for the first time ever in the Gazette.

Merry Christmas everyone. May your mulled wine still be warm when you get to drink it, may your elf clear off soon, and may you be the one who gets to take a bite out of the mince pie and not the carrot.