Nick King's Blog

I've done some pretty cool things, but nothing's as cool as creating our family


It’s a surreal experience watching your home burning.


Standing in our garden, on a cold, damp Saturday evening last February that’s exactly the experience we had.   

A normal evening transformed in minutes.   Our smoke alarms had gone off while the children relaxed watching tv and we cleared the kitchen after dinner.  

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As an adopter, why I am so angry at Carol Sarler's nasty, stigmatising article for the Daily Mail

People are very kind.  Knowing of my interest in adoption they often alert me to articles about the subject.  So it was this week when no fewer than three of my friends alerted me to Carol Sarler's article for the Daily Mail.

The article's strap line didn't bode well for easy reading: "They open their homes to adopt - then find they've taken on youngsters who wreck their family.  Why do we continue to BETRAY loving parents, asks CAROL SARLER"

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"Over the moon" about Trump's victory

Someone told me they were 'over the moon' at Trump's victory.  

I was dumbfounded.  This was my response:

I teach my children to respect others, regardless of race, religion or gender. 

A man who has been recorded disrespecting women in the worst, most mysoginistic way; who denigrates the followers of an entire religion; who paints a whole ethnic group as 'rapists' and 'thieves' has just been elected US President.

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Goodbye #grumpydeafgrandad

I thought my father would never die.

I was sure my father would always be here.  I couldn't conceive that the one constant throughout my life, in my life, would no longer be present. 

I was also afraid my father would never die.  I couldn't conceive of an end to his growing dependency.  The tyranny of care wrought by my familial sense of duty.  The ever increasing list of tasks I needed to complete for him.  The way these ate into our available time.  The fear engendered by my innate selfishness.

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Think of us without a Mum on mother’s day. It’s a day for remembrance while the majority celebrate.

This morning my social media timelines are rightly full of Mother's Day greetings.

Children greeting their mothers over the web.  Mothers making plans for later in the day, anticipating the arrival of family, preparing to be taken to lunch or dinner, thanking their offspring for cards and gifts already received.  More poignantly those who have lost their mothers sharing photos of them.  Wishing those departed a happy Mothering Sunday.  Recalling Mother's Days past.  Resurrecting happy memories and equally rekindling feelings of loss.

It made me reflect on Mother's Day.

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*5 answers door* JW:”Mum or Dad in?” 5:”I’ve 2 Dads” *JW blinks* 5:”& princess panties” *shows pants*

I feel some empathy with people who knock uninvited at our door.  I’ve done it enough myself when canvassing as a politician.  

In my opinion it takes considerable bravery to walk up to someone’s home unannounced and attempt to engage them in conversation.  For that reason I try to provide a polite and friendly response to anyone who has chosen to call at our door.  

Even if I don’t want them there.  Even if I disagree with them fundamentally.  

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Valentine's Day

When he was seven, our son returned home from Beaver Cubs carrying a pile of what looked like bit of paper.

"What's all that?" I asked.

"Valentines Presents for <girl X>"

"Oh", I replied looking askance.  To be honest, the pile of paper didn't look too promising as a Valentine's gift for the latest object of his affection.

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The Leaders' Debate, Nigel Farage and HIV

I tend to shy away from watching too much politics on TV.  Being involved in politics myself I tend to find I learn very little that's new from the interviews, debates, audience questioning they entail.

I did start watching the General Election Leaders' Debate last night, coming in at the point they were discussing the NHS.  A subject close to my heart for a whole range of reasons, not least that it provides our family with it's main source of income through J's employment as a doctor.

During that segment I watched in horror. Anger. Stupefaction at the utterly hideous comments made by Nigel Farage about those people diagnosed with HIV in our country.

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We're blessed to live in a wonderful spot.

Our house is a little odd.  There's not an obvious front and back to it.  The garden surrounds us in equal size on all sides.  Our lane (more a track) runs around two sides, providing a parking area and garage before disappearing through the woods towards the nearby river.  

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Nativity! (Part 2)

Going along to the school Nativity play it's always best to get there early.  

Arrive early and you are sure of getting one of the seats in the front couple of rows in the school hall.  Seated on the three quarter sized chairs, those first two rows provide a perfect view of the extravaganza to come.

So, on the Friday before Christmas, arriving some twenty minutes early I was confident of bagging a prime spot in our daughter's school hall to watch her performance.  How wrong could I have been?

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A stand off worthy of a spaghetti western ensues in our downstairs loo: 4:”Daddy wipe my botty” Me:”No you’re a big girl now” 4:”DAAADDYY!”

Generally we've been lucky with the way potty training has gone for our children.

When we adopted our son he was already used to using the loo, both during the day and, to our amazement and delight, during the night.

Our daughter was of course much younger when she joined our family.  Even so, the tranition from nappies to pull ups to using the toilet normally went very well.

With the exception of bottom wiping.

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I've always struggled a bit with Halloween.  

Rather like an atheist at a christening I feel a bit awkward around it.  I fail to connect.  Struggle with the excitement.  Lack commitment to the hilarity.

You see Halloween is also my Dad's birthday.

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All Change

t's been a bit of a cryptic time around here recently.  Life is changing, but in such a way that it wasn't possible to be open about what that change might be.  Not for a while anyway.

That's meant not answering questions in as straightforward a manner as we would like.  It's meant a slow dissemination of information.  It's meant attempting to control the growing excitement and trepidation of the children.

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The X5 - a love that will never die!

Our son slept soundly from the first night he spent with us. 

He also, for some time, woke early.  Thundered along the landing to our bedroom demanding immediate attention.  Requesting company.  Wanting to play.

So when, after he had been living with us for around three months, he awoke one morning, went downstairs and turned the tv on without disturbing us the occasion was memorable.

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