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My Father Taught Me ..
My father, an actor, didn’t believe in owning things.

He believed in travelling the world and doing what you want.
When I was five he took my family and lots of other people out to India.
We moved from hotels to hostels to digs – we never owned a house.
My possessions had to fit in one trunk.
My father taught me what little you need and what is important in life.
I wasn’t handed anything on a plate except a very strong work ethic and I look back now and am very grateful to my parents for giving me that.
And a tremendous amount of love.
I used to wish I hadn’t made mistakes, but now I’d say every mistake you make gets you to where you are now.
( Felicity Kendal )

My Full-Time Job Is Being A Mother ..
As my children (Ava, 13, Deacon, 9, and Tennessee, eight months) are getting a bit older, I feel it’s so important to be there with them as much as possible.

I have very little enthusiasm to spend three or four months on a film set and not be part of their lives or disrupt their education.
It’s not fair to them and I also feel much happier being a mother and enjoying my life with my family. Working in Hollywood is more of a diversion for me now.
I still love acting, but my full-time job is being a mother.
I like being home when they wake up, making their breakfast, taking them to school, helping them with their homework and enjoying dinner, and putting them to bed. That’s my real job. It’s strange but sometimes I find myself repeating the phrases my mother used or little rules she imposed on me while I was growing up.
I laugh when I catch myself doing that.
( Reese Witherspoon )

Growing Up In The Sixties ..
Growing up in the Sixties, I was a free-range child – we all were.
From the age of eight or nine, at weekends and during school holidays, my mum would pack me off to explore the outside world.
As I went out the door, she gave me one simple instruction: ‘Be back home for tea.’
For me, and for all the boys and girls of my generation, this was a passport to freedom. We climbed trees and built dens, picked flowers and played conkers, and filled jam-jars to bursting with frogspawn. Occasionally we indulged in more dubious pastimes, such as scrumping apples and taking the odd bird’s egg.
I don’t want to give the wrong impression – that we lived in some kind of rural idyll, like something out of Swallows And Amazons.
In reality, I grew up on a housing estate on the edge of London’s suburban sprawl.
We used to play in the scrubby strip of woodland that ran along the back of my house, which we called ‘the forest’, or the local gravel pits – for us a real-life adventure playground. Back in the Sixties, my friends and I weren’t posh or privileged, with doting parents to take us on country walks. Exploring the natural world was just one of the things we all did to quell the constant threat of boredom.
Remember, children’s TV was only on for a couple of hours each afternoon, and mobile phones and home computers were still decades into the future. We would often come home with grazed knees and torn trousers, much to our mum’s annoyance. Sometimes we got caught in the rain, and on one memorable occasion I plunged waist-deep into muddy water in pursuit of an escaping frog.
But most of the time we simply had fun.
( An extract from an article by Stephen Moss, 09.04.2012 )

Some Are More Equal Than Others ..
One type of political hypocrisy is particularly galling for those parents who each year battle to ensure that their children get into oversubscribed state schools.

Politicians of all parties repeatedly manage to obtain for their own children what they deny to others. The latest to do so is Helen Grant MP, whose ministerial responsibilities include equality. She has got her son into a renowned selective grammer school, many miles from her home. The method she has used to do so is lawful, if unappealing. But that is not the point.
If she believes such schools are good, then she should not belong to a Government which flatly refuses to allow any more of them to open.
Truly, some are more equal than others.
( The Mail On Sunday, 24.03.2013 )

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