Like many women after a divorce, Nicola Hodgkinson found herself facing a stark reality. With three young children to raise, a ramshackle cottage by the sea she had a choice: to wallow in self pity or pull herself together and get on with it. She chose the latter. And with her choice came the decision to embrace a more casual approach to parenting, convinced as she was that fresh air, a positive outlook and the freedom to learn from mistakes would be good for the whole family. And so life with the lid off, began.This is a book about all the magic, and the chaos, of family existence. Steering her way through village life, Nicola discovers the hazards that solo domesticity can bring, from a disgraced cat sailing through the window into a jam-and-scone cottage tea sale, to a car which acquires a resident mouse. Constantly surrounded by a haphazard menagerie, along the way we meet a spirit donkey, a pig with empty-nest syndrome and a lot of quails.
As Nicola learns to muddle through, and even delight in, a less than perfect existence, Life with the Lid Off is a brilliant, profound and funny evocation of a universal theme: how to find yourself again amongst the hurly burly sandwich of family life. 'This is the most wonderful story. A very worthy winner of the "People's Author" competition' Alan Titchmarsh
Nicola Hodgkinson is the winner of THE PEOPLE'S AUTHOR national writing competition as featured on The Alan Titchmarsh Show. She lives with a menagerie of animals in Suffolk, where she writes in her shed.