You can have any colour you like.

Solnushka stands and surveys a paint-splattered playroom.

There are large bottle green splodges on the floor, the walls and the windows and lime green spots are, well, everywhere else. There's a spray of burgundy on the ceiling and a crimson pool on the table. Royal blue footprints abound in places where royal blue footprints have no place being and there are a couple of turquoise handprints on each chair. Swirls of tangerine orange, daffodil yellow, rose pink, purple and jet black have been enthusiastically applied to any remaining clear surface and amidst of all this is a baby, a rainbow-hued toddler, who is sliding around on her stomach, gurgling happily, determined to chew on a paintbrush.

Noises off indicate a contented slightly-under-five is enthusiastically splashing in a bath.

Hi there!

Welcome to my h2g2 home. Previous incarnations have included the nursery part 1 and part 2, the music room and the tower.

More about me? I joined the site in June 2000, following a link from a newspaper article about Douglas Adams. I am a British woman in my 30s. I spent a number of years living and working in Russia. Moscow, to be specific. I am married to a Russian. No, he doesn’t own any football teams. Or drink vodka for breakfast. Yes, I do talk about Russia a lot.

I've been in the English as a foreign language business for about 15 years now, but at the moment I am mainly a Mama. The two children creating havock in the playroom, right? We are trying to bring them up as balanced bilinguals and bi-culturals as possible. This involves me watching a lot of Soviet era cartoons and having my Russian pronunciation and grammar corrected by a nearly-five-year-old.

I am interested in language, education, living abroad, formula one and the manifestations of culture shock. After all, motherhood is just another form of culture shock. I sometimes write about that elsewhere, on the rare occasions I am not on h2g2.

On h2g2, I am currently the Representative to the board of Trustees for the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy Foundation, a literacy charity (in the broadest sense of the word 'literacy') which got started as a direct result of the community, Robbie Stamp and the Larholms taking over h2g2 from the BBC. You can find out more about that here.

I also highly recommend dropping by Create, a project aiming to inspire us all to wilder feats of research, more studious creative writing, tastier visual arts, more lyrical fun and wonderfully composed biscuits.

Plus, there are badges:

Pull up a chair. Don't mind the paint, it'll wash off. I've got some biscuits around here somewhere. Tea? Milk? Sugar? One lump or two?

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