Wednesday, 16 October 2013

Dieting tips

I'm doing Weightwatchers (again). I've started several times but never made it to goal. Different things work for different people I know, but WW does work for me - I just need to stick to it!

I've tried the 5:2 diet which my dad was shouting about (he's lost 4 stone on it and looks amazing). I must be the only person who managed to put on weight doing it! Calorie counting is fine but I get bored working it out all the time. What I like about WW is that nothing is out of bounds. I'm like a child - if I am told I can't have something, I just want it more! With WW I can have anything providing I account for it in my 'points', and knowing I can have it is usually enough. I often decide it's not worth the points.

I consider myself a bit of a dieting expert in that I know exactly how to lose weight sensibly. I'm probably not the right person to say it's possible as I'm fairly overweight myself, but I have got a number of hints and tips that have helped me so I thought I'd pass them along. If you've got any good tips, please comment and add them. I WILL do it this time.

1) Someone told me: "If you have a bunch of flowers and one dies, you don't throw the whole bunch away." This really helped me. If you have a 'bad' day (and if you are anything like me you often will), don't write off the whole week. Damage limitation: accept it, maybe be a bit more careful / do some extra exercise if you can, and move on. Tomorrow (or the next meal) is a fresh start.

2) Know your triggers. I know I'm going to want chocolate, and if I'm not prepared for that, I'll just go and eat whatever I can lay my hands on. Instead I keep several low point options in the house: low fat chocolate mousse for example. I also buy small chocolate bars, break them up and freeze them. A frozen Freddo lasts for ages! Try slicing a Mars bar and freezing it - you can make a couple of slices last all evening.

3) If you are a nibbler or a mindless eater, make sure you have plenty of healthy nibbles around. When I'm preparing the evening meal, I often make up a 'nibble box' for later - carrots, celery, peppers, cucumber sticks, sugar snaps, baby sweetcorn; or make up a big fruit salad. If it's ready-prepared, I'm much more likely to grab that rather than something I need to mess about preparing. Frozen grapes is another good one, they last such a long time.

4) I can't walk past the fridge without looking inside to see if I fancy anything. So I've started keeping a big box of grapes at the front. I'll grab a couple of those rather than rummaging through for a pork pie.

5) The obvious: don't go food shopping when you are hungry! If you have to, either grab a snack at the cafe first, or eat something as you are going round - sugar free gum is a lifesaver. It won't make you less hungry, but you won't fancy the taste of things nearly as much.

6) Prepare. Everything. Plan meals in advance so you don't get caught out. But also have strategies in place for things that you can't control. I try to keep a pack of WW fruit gums in my drawer for when the office biscuits come out.

7) Don't treat yourself with food. I tend to think, 'I've done really well, I've had a very hard day at work, met all my deadlines, managed to do x, y and z - I deserve a treat.' Yes, I do - but that treat doesn't have to be chocolate. I try to buy myself something non-foodie like a new nail varnish, or a magazine. Or, if it needs to be food try:

8) If you do have a treat, make it special. I loooove chocolate cake. So about once a week, I'll treat myself to a piece of cake. However, rather than eating it standing up while doing the housework, I make an event of it. I take myself out for half an hour. I go to a nice coffee shop. I take a book. I turn off my phone. I order a diet coke, and a piece of the gooiest chocolate cake I can find. And I appreciate every last crumb. I also appreciate the peace and quiet just as much!

9) Try new foods or twists on old favourites. Since starting WW again, I've discovered loads of new recipes that I adore. I've also realised how easy it is to make small changes to 'normal' meals. We still have sausages, mash, Yorkshire puddings and onion gravy - I just buy low fat sausages, grill them rather than fry them, use low fat spread in the mash and make small Yorkies rather than plate-sized ones. Then I bulk it out with veg. We seem to eat more than we did before, but it's much healthier.

10) Appreciate the non-weight advantages of eating healthily. When I'm eating properly, I feel more energetic, my skin looks better, I recover from colds more quickly - what's not to like?

11) Break the habit. I read that it takes 21 days to break a habit. So, because I can't control my chocolate eating, I have given up chocolate for 21 days. It's not actually been that bad, and it's made me realise just how often I eat it without thinking about it. It's automatic - if I go to buy a pint of milk, I pick up a bar of chocolate. Then I eat it on the way home without even tasting it! What a waste! After 21 days is up, I'm going to reintroduce chocolate into my diet, but only when I really want it. It's not going to be a habit any more, it's going to be a conscious choice. Then I'm going to try and give up cake for 21 days!

12) Celebrate little victories. I have a lot of weight to lose. If I focus on I have to lose x pounds, I'm doomed before I start. Instead, I am setting small goals and celebrating when I reach them. So rather than saying 'I have to lose x stone, I'll never do it', start small. I want to lose 6 lbs. I want to feel more confident in those jeans. I want to go down a clothes size. I want to lose a stone by Christmas. You CAN do it.

I can do it. I will do it. This time, I will get there.

Tuesday, 16 July 2013

Go Away, Give Me a Chance To Miss You

My partner has gone away for a few days. So has my daughter. I love them both very much, but I’ll admit that I’m looking forward to a few days peace and quiet. 

It makes me feel guilty. I’m lucky enough to have this amazing family; loads of people would do anything for that. So why do I find myself desperate to escape from them once in a while?

With my daughter, I guess it’s time. There are never enough hours in the day to do everything. I get up extra early so I can spend some time with her before work. I rush home from work totally shattered, dying for a chance to put my feet up, and she’s there as soon as I get in: “Mummy, will you play with me? Mummy, I want to go to the park. Mummy, I’m hungry.” When it’s bedtime, I put her to bed, and it’s “Mummy, can I have another story? A drink? Another cuddle? I’m not tired. I can’t sleep.”  And my personal favourite: “Mummy, my dolly can’t sleep because she hasn’t got a dressing gown!” Just the thought of being able to get up when I want, being able to sit down for a few minutes without being used as a trampoline, watching a film in the evening without pressing pause every few minutes, the very thought is bliss. 

With my partner, it’s those things that get to you whenever you spend lots of time with the same person. Usually the things that at first, you find cute. Then after you’ve been together for a while, they become little traits you put up with. Eventually, usually after a bad week at work, they become irritating habits that make you want to rip off your head. I don’t feel too bad saying that, because we all have them. I know that my habit of leaving things in carrier bags dotted around the house drives my partner round the twist, and he could definitely live without me leaving veggies in the fridge still wrapped in plastic to slowly turn to mush. And it’s not just partners is it? When anyone stays with me for a while, in the end their idiosyncrasies drive me to distraction. I have a relative I adore, but who insists on picking her nails when she watches TV. I may have to attack her with a blunt object if she keeps it up.

So when they are going away like this, I look forward to it. I plan my evenings; instead of coming home and just fielding the madness, I know exactly what I’m going to do every night. Tonight it’s writing my blog, watching Michael McIntyre, and eating Ben and Jerry’s straight out of the tub. 

Despite the irritations, I know just how much I’ll miss them. They’ve been away oh, about seven hours so far, and I’m starting to get that little tug in my heart. I rang my daughter to say goodnight, and hearing her voice made me want to drive the 300 mile trip and cuddle her. I spoke to my partner, and got quite teary just knowing he is so far away.

P!nk does a great song about it, that feeling of being desperate to have some time on your own but the crippling loneliness that comes with it. (Leave me alone [I’m lonely] if you fancy a listen.)

The one huge advantage of people you care about being away for a bit, is it makes you realise just how much you really do care about them. I tell you, if your kids are turning you into a screaming banshee, send them to stay with friends for a few days. They’ll have a great time and you will be desperate to get them home. Suddenly, being woken up by a little wriggling girl at 6am will be something you’ll be counting down the minutes to. And that habit of your partners that made you want to commit homicide? It’ll be back to being cute in no time.

Saturday, 6 July 2013

Little White Lies

I recently read something suggesting you don’t allow your kids to have pets. Now, in some ways I agree. Jess wants a dog, but I know that it’ll be me that ends up walking it, cleaning up after it and feeding it, so she’s not getting one – at least not until she’s old enough to take responsibility for it. I did however allow her to have a small fishtank for her birthday and she has half a dozen fish now. Sometimes she likes feeding them but more often than not, I do it; I don’t mind putting a pinch of food into a tank though.

However, one of the main reasons for not allowing pets (according to this particular piece) was because it meant you would have to lie to your kids. One submitter talked about how they’ve had three identical budgies; each time a bird dies, she slips out and buys another one to replace it so that her child doesn’t know it’s dead. Another talked about doing the same with fish, replacing one particular goldfish no less than 12 times!

I don’t understand. Why lie to your kids about that? We all tell lies sometimes, I can’t deny that; “Father Christmas comes down the chimney,” “eating your crusts will give you curly hair”, “eating carrots will make you see in the dark”. But why lie about a dead fish?

We are so protective of our children. We are so scared of upsetting them that we do everything we can to keep them happy. In some ways, that’s great: when a cuddle can fix a grazed knee or a child wants a bedtime story, there’s no harm in fulfilling their wishes. We all like to make our children smile. But we can’t protect them from everything, and we shouldn’t be trying to.

Sadly, at some point in their lives, our kids are going to have some experience of death. Whether that’s an elderly relative, a friend, or a neighbour’s dog, it’s going to happen. And although we want to put that experience off as long as possible, I’d much rather Jess’s first experience of death is a fish that she’s not too attached to than, say, a grandparent.

A friend’s mother died recently, and she had to explain to her three girls. They seemed to grasp it, but three months on, the youngest (aged 4) is still asking daily when grandma is coming back. When reminded that grandma had died, she just asks “yes, but when will she wake up again?” She also talks about ‘digging her back up’ so she can play. Even the eldest (aged 10) seems confused.

I don’t suggest for a second that dealing with a dead fish will make handling the death of a person any easier. But personally I’d rather be handling questions about the fish than the person. At least when the worst happens, hopefully Jess will understand that when someone goes, that’s it – they aren’t going to come home and play with them. She’ll be devastated, but she can grieve properly and hopefully when we do talk about the person, we can talk about the happier times we had with them rather than going around in the ‘when are they coming back?’ loop.

Inevitably, some of Jess’s fish died. She’s had them for three months and lost three in that time. Two of them went quickly, the third got stressed when we had to clean the tank. We’ve had a conversation about them each time, given them a ‘burial’ of sorts, and she’s asked questions. She hasn’t been particularly upset although she has had a couple of ‘Where’s fishy gone?’ moments. She has obviously taken it in though as pre-school informs me she spent an hour last week telling her key worker about her dead fish!

It never occurred to me to replace the fish before Jess realised. Pets die sometimes and if you have a pet, you have to deal with that whether you are forty or four.

I know that it will be much more traumatic when it’s something like a dog, an animal they have built up some sort of relationship with. But of course with an animal like that, you couldn’t secretly replace it anyway.

If you are animal lovers, get whatever pets you want. If you don’t want animals, then don’t. But don’t refuse to get them because it’ll mean lying to your kids when they die. We tell our kids not to lie, although we know that sometimes it’ll be necessary – but lying about the death of a pet isn’t necessary. It’s not protecting our kids in the long run. Our job as parents is to get our kids ready for ‘life’, and teaching them that everything in the world is perfect and bad things don’t happen is doing them a disservice. It’s lying just for the sake of it – and that’s never good.

I'm in!

Sorry things have been so quiet, I got locked out of my account! Stupid thing to do I know. Trouble is, I use so many different email address for different things, sometimes I forget which is which. I own a web domain so I have loads of addresses. Great for knowing where emails have come from and filtering stuff I actually want, not so great for remembering which one I used. Don't know why I bother with email actually, yesterday I had 347 emails, all of which were spam. Does anyone actually read those? 'Lose 147 lbs in 5 days without dieting!' Hmm.

Anyway, thanks for bearing with me. Normal service should now be resumed.

Monday, 17 December 2012

Panicked Parenting

I had a nightmare last night. I dreamt that I took Jess to the park but left her to walk home on her own. She vanished for ages and then came home with a woman who had found her. The woman was a nurse and started proceedings to have her removed from me. I vividly remember running down the road searching for Jess and this woman, sobbing and calling for her. I woke up shaking and on the verge of tears.

I often have frightening dreams and since Jess was born, around 85% of them are about her. If you asked me what my worst fear was, about 5 years ago I would have replied ‘loneliness’ – not being on my own, but losing the people I am closest to. Now, not surprisingly, it’s something happening to Jess.

I don’t think I’m too over protective. I am always tempted to watch her like a hawk, but I give her as much freedom as I can. I endeavour not to be a ‘helicopter parent’ although I don’t think I could call myself a ‘free-range parent’ either. I try to strike a balance between keeping her safe and allowing her to explore.

I am guilty of doing too much for her. If I’m rushing to get ready for work, it’s so much quicker to get her dressed myself; I’m not the most patient of people! I’m trying to back off and it is definitely easier now that she can reach the light switches – when I had to go upstairs to put the light on so she could get something, it was easier to just do it myself. I am trying to be more hands off but it does go against my nature!

You are probably familiar with the terms ‘helicopter parent’ and ‘free-range parent’. I have some sympathy with both schools of thought. If you haven’t got a clue what I’m on about, a helicopter parent is one who hovers over their child, limiting their freedom or keeping them safe depending on your point of view. A free range parent is one who gives their child freedom to do their own thing, encouraging them to be independent but also protecting them less.

It’s tempting to wrap our kids in cotton wool. Every time I switch on the television or pick up a newspaper, there seems to be another story about children being abused or abducted. I put on a cartoon for Jess a couple of days ago and found myself watching a newsflash about the horrific school shooting in Connecticut. If something so terrible can happen while our kids are ‘safe’ at school, how can we let them out of our sight? If something happened to them while they were playing in the garden or walking to the local shop, how would we ever forgive ourselves?

Let’s talk about Madeline McCann. No parent deserves to go through what her parents must be going through every day of their lives. To wonder where your child is, if she’s alive, if she’s in pain, and at the same time know that if you hadn’t left her alone she’d probably still be with you; how do you live with that?

If you were the parent of one of the children shot in Connecticut, how would you feel if your kid had complained of a headache and hadn’t wanted to go to school that day? I’m sure it can’t just be me that would beat myself up every day for the rest of my life for making them go. We know that those families cannot be blamed one iota. They did nothing wrong. And yet I would put money on the fact that most of them will be asking themselves what they could have done differently. Did they choose the wrong school? Did they check the security properly? Did they see someone acting suspiciously? What could they have done to keep their child safe?

Despite all this, we know logically that for the most part, the odds of something happening to our children are slim. Whether we are scared of someone taking our children away or them being hit by a car, we know that the chances are very small. And of course, we put safeguards in place. We teach our kids how to cross the road. We tell them not to go with strangers. We lock our doors.

But where do we draw the line? Do we stop our kids playing in the garden? Going to the park? Having sleepovers? Walking home from school? How small does a chance have to be before we take it?

Maybe we should just keep our kids under lock and key where we can see them.

But if we do, what kind of childhood are we giving them? A safe one perhaps, but a very limited one. A huge part of learning comes from developing independence and exploration. If our children don’t get chance to run around outside, playing with other kids and exploring without our constant supervision, they are missing out on a whole raft of experiences.

It’s not just these experiences, it’s also about learning to deal with things themselves. Things like how to stand up for themselves, how to interact, how to share and compromise, how to entertain themselves, what is safe to do and what isn’t, what risks can be taken and what should be avoided. It’s the first introduction that children have to skills that we use every day as adults.

Most of us did play outside with our friends when we were kids, or went to the local shop on our own. My childhood was more sheltered than most; my brother and I didn’t play in the street and our ‘free’ time was quite restricted. I can’t comment on whether it made much difference in the long run as I have nothing to compare it to. I didn’t go off the rails as a teen (it’s hard to go mad when you only get to go out one night a month and then have to be escorted), but when I went to university I felt completely out of my depth. I remember the first time I took the tube in London on my own; I was so proud that I rang my family to boast! I was convinced that setting foot outside my door after 6pm meant I’d be mugged, and found it hard to do things alone.

The problem is you can’t protect children from everything. I was approached three times as a kid despite hardly leaving the house alone. Once was with my younger brother, walking to the local shop in a crowded street on a sunny Saturday afternoon. The second time was in a packed congregation at church! And the third time was crossing a well lit road in the early evening was I was a teenager. Obviously nothing terrible happened; I had been brought up not to go with strangers and got away without being scarred for life, but I’m not sure what else my parents could have done to protect me – not let me out alone until I was married?

I presume that most parents, like me, walk a somewhat wobbly middle ground. I try to protect Jess from the big bad nasties of the world while still letting her explore and have a bit of freedom. I don’t want to be one of those parents who still insist on walking their sixteen year old to school every day; equally, I want my girl to make it to sixteen in the first place.

It’s difficult finding that line. If anyone finds the answer, do share it. In the meantime, I’m adjusting the fact that my baby starts school next year and that soon she won’t want me by her side every second, watching over her. Goodness knows how I’ll cope when she wants to walk to school alone. Anyone got any binoculars?

Monday, 10 December 2012

Living the dream

As I may have mentioned, I’m quite ambitious. I’m always looking for the next opportunity, the next promotion, the new job. Even when I’m in a job I enjoy, I’m keeping an eye on the job pages, just in case something better comes along. It’s a part of what pushes me to do well in whatever role I’m in; I don’t know how long I’ll be there so I want to do the best I can for them, I want to leave a good impression, and I might need them as a reference!

Which is why I recently found myself applying for a role several pay grades above my current one. The role was advertised internally and sounded very interesting. I was fairly sure I was out of my league applying and they wouldn’t look twice at me but that’s never stopped me applying for anything before. I was offered an interview for which I had to give a short presentation (definitely out of my comfort zone there), and I spent several days drafting, redrafting, asking everyone for ideas, and redrafting the redrafts.

The interview was tough, although made a little easier by the fact that I knew two of the people on the panel. They asked several questions that I really didn’t know the answers to and I found myself babbling a few times and had to reel myself back in. I felt my presentation went well but I wasn’t at all sure I’d covered everything they wanted, so I was overjoyed when I received a call later that day offering me the job.

The thing is, this is my dream job. It’s something I’ve wanted to do for years. It’s fully flexible hours, reasonable money, with a base only a mile from my home. I’ll be working with people I like, travelling to different places and meeting new people. I’ll have an actual budget – the money to do the role properly! – and the facilities I need. It is literally my perfect job. I’m totally in love with the job and I haven’t even started it yet.

There are a couple of things I will miss. I work with a fantastic team. I’ve been lucky enough to work with some terrific people over the years; I’ve also worked with some awful ones such as the woman who used to throw broken glass into the sink and cover it with bubbly water whenever it was my turn to wash up. My current workmates are great and I’m really going to miss them. The hours of the new job may be very flexible, but I could do with a few more of them. And… well actually, I think that’s it. I don’t officially start for a few weeks but I’ve attended some training and  meetings, and I’m fairly sure I’m going to love it.

So… what now? How can I look for other jobs when I’m already in the job of my dreams? What will drive me on now?

Believe me, I’m not complaining. I’m just a bit thrown. How do I react when the dream comes true? Can I just enjoy it, or do I need to go and get another one?

As it happens, the role I’ve landed is a temporary secondment, so my contract is only for six months initially. It may be extended but it depends on the budget and the success of the project. So I will still be driven to succeed, especially if I want it to be a long term prospect. It’s just a little confusing for me; I’ve never before been in a position where I haven’t been looking for the next stop! And on the theory that I can make such a roaring success of this that they will make it a permanent thing (a lack of self confidence with work is not one of my problems), I’m curious: Once you reach wherever you want to be, what happens next?

Cooking update / reviews – following on from ‘Cooking Up a Storm’

I’ve now managed to try a few new recipes and have also had a tasting session with the ones a made a couple of weeks ago. So here’s an update so far.

Salted caramel lollipops
After the first batch, I bought some silicone moulds which worked really well. The lollies remained very sticky though and disintegrated quickly – I left some covered up on a plate overnight and they melted into goo! After lots of experiments, I have finally got a system that works, so to save you the trouble:
Invest in silicone chocolate moulds (I got mine for a couple of pounds from ebay)
Also, get some plastic lolly sticks and proper sweet bags – it makes things much easier in the long run.
Put any flavourings straight into the moulds and pour the caramel on top. Chopped nuts work really well, as
does small pieces of candied ginger.
Do bother to add the salt, it adds to the flavour.

Melt the sugar as before, then use two teaspoons to fill the moulds (much less waste than pouring).
Give them a minute or two to start setting, then put in lolly sticks once the caramel is tacky but not hard.
Let them set fully, then pop them out of the moulds. They will be sticky and will disintegrate if you leave them out – I tried dusting some with icing sugar, DON’T do the same, it makes them melt more quickly!
Either put them straight into sweet bags and keep in the fridge, or dip them in melted chocolate and leave to harden on greaseproof paper before putting them into the sweet bags.
Tie the bags with a paper twist (I got some lovely glittery red ones) and keep somewhere cool.

Verdict: Despite all the messing about, once I’d figured out the best way to make them, it was quick and easy. I’ve been making loads of batches because it’s just a case of putting sugar in a saucepan and melting it – easy to have some cooking away while I’m making dinner.

Apple and Cranberry Chutney

1 kg cooking apples, peeled and chopped
500g eating apples, peeled and chopped
450g red onions, peeled and sliced
50g root ginger, peeled and finely chopped
1 tsp black peppercorns
500g sugar
250ml cider vinegar
500g cranberries (fresh or frozen)

Put everything except the cranberries in a large saucepan and bring to the boil, then reduce heat and simmer uncovered for about an hour until the apples are tender and there is no watery vinegar left. (If there is still a lot of watery juice left after more than an hour, you can strain the mixture and discard the juice).

Add the cranberries and cook for a further 10 minutes until the cranberries have softened but not turned to mush. Spoon into sterilised jars and keep somewhere dark and cool for a couple of weeks before opening. Will last about 6 months unopened. Keep in the fridge once opened and eat within a month. Makes about 3 - 4 jars.

Verdict: I was really impressed with this recipe. I’m not a fan of chutneys, but even I loved this one. It’s especially good with cheese or cold meat. I was just going to make one batch as presents but I’ve ended up making several so I can keep some. Easy to make as well, I’m always a fan of recipes that involve sticking everything in a saucepan and leaving it alone!

Cranberry-Orange Vodka
Bottle of cheap vodka
250g cranberries
Zest of two oranges
175g sugar

Put the cranberries into a bowl and stab them with a fork. Put everything into wide necked, sterilised jars. Seal and shake. Leave somewhere cool and dark for a couple of weeks, shaking occasionally to ensure the sugar dissolves. Strain through muslin and put into bottles. Leave for another couple of weeks before drinking. Will keep almost forever in the freezer if you can keep your hands off it!

Verdict: Another very simple and really impressive recipe. I don’t really drink but I could happily polish off some of this. The cranberries turn the vodka a very festive red and you get a great orange hit as an aftertaste. This was very popular with everyone!

Stilton-apricot pots
300g stilton
100g butter
40g chopped walnuts
25g dried apricots, chopped

Beat the butter until soft (easiest in a mixer), then crumble in the stilton and mix well. Pack into ramekins, leaving space to add the topping. Mix the walnuts and the apricots, sprinkle over the stilton and press down. Cover with cling film and either eat within a week or freeze for up to a month. Makes 2 – 3 ramekins.

Verdict: Gorgeous! The addition of the butter makes the stilton milder and beautifully creamy, and even if you aren’t keen on walnuts, try it anyway – you don’t taste them, they just contribute to the texture and the depth of flavour. I am definitely making this again; it’s really good on crackers or crusty bread.

Nutty Chocolate Fudge
The BEST fudge recipe in the world! I’ve tried about 20 recipes for fudge and this one is by far the easiest to make and the nicest.
150ml / 1/4 pint of evaporated milk
350g / 12 oz sugar
large pinch of salt
50g / 2 oz chopped nuts
350g / 12 oz plain chocolate chips or chopped plain chocolate

Put evaporated milk, salt and sugar in a saucepan. Bring to the boil while stirring constantly. Lower the heat and simmer gently, stirring, for about 5 minutes. Turn off the heat and stir in the chocolate and the nuts. Keep stirring until the chocolate has melted. Pour into the tin, even it out, and leave to set. Once set, cut into squares, store in an airtight container (separating the layers with greaseproof paper) and try not to eat it all in one sitting!

Verdict: I make this recipe every Christmas, I absolutely love it and so do my friends and family. Rich, chocolatey and delicious. I’d make it every week if it wasn’t so fattening!

Taste reviews

Ginger syrup:
This was lovely mixed with lemonade and it’s supposed to be good for colds too!

Candied ginger:
Nice to nibble but very strong in flavour; try using it in ginger cookies or fruit crisps instead, or adding it to anything you would use mixed peel in.

Smoky Paprika Peppers:
Don’t bother. They looked fabulous but no one was keen on them. They had a rather odd taste and we ended up throwing them out. A lot of work for a poor return.