Saturday 29 December 2012

Looking forward

The run up to Christmas is often a stressful time and although I didn’t have any cooking to worry about this year, I still allowed myself to get stressed over presents.  But now I have time to relax and reflect on this last year and look forward.

I don’t think I was prepared for how hard my Mum’s death would hit me.  Having lost her in many ways as she succumbed to Alzheimer’s I felt as though I had already been grieving for her and therefore thought her passing would be a blessing and enable me to move on.  I was wrong.  These last months have been hard as she’s no longer there to talk to.  The routine of my life was disrupted.  I drifted.  Christmas approached.

As usual I denied it was coming.  I left things until the last minute.  I didn’t plan ahead.  Thank God I wasn’t cooking!  But the presents did get bought, and wrapped.  The cards were sent.  The world is still turning.   I just don’t like the fact that I allowed myself to be a Grinch. Again.

Part of my problem I think is that we have descended into chaos at home.  There is way too much clutter in my house but we are slowly beginning to tackle it.  It is going to take some time and co-operation from family members and I have to be patient.  I have to stop procrastinating.  This is beginning to sound like a list of resolutions and I’m wary of that.  I don’t want to set myself up to fail.  I want to be happy with my lot and find the positive in things.  (When your daughter buys you a book entitled “14,000 things to be happy about” there is a clear underlying message!)  So we may not have got up early yesterday or today but we did clear the bedroom desk of clutter and I did shred lots of old paperwork. Little steps.  There is still time for some little steps today. 

Maybe I will just have one resolution: be kind to myself and others.

It’s so much easier to complain than offer praise!

A friend of mine posted about how her rather curt e-mail to a supplier had obviously hit a nerve.  The supplier had responded by explaining her oversight had been caused by the pressure of Christmas orders and trying to run a small business while nursing a sick husband (man flu) and keeping a 4 year old son entertained.

Personally, I felt the reply didn’t address my friend’s complaint but she may not have reproduced the whole response.  However I was a bit surprised at other responses which were critical of the supplier quoting personal reasons for an oversight.  The feeling seemed to be that business issues should be kept separate form personal ones.

I can agree with that to some extent but there are many people out there who have bravely, in my opinion, set up small businesses to try and support their families.  This must take an incredible amount of work and must be stressful.  Starting up new ventures in the current economic climate is risky, even if you do have a good product/service to offer.  If you also have young children to work around it just adds another factor into the work/life balance.  I’m grateful that both my husband and I have good jobs and stability that don’t require us to have to look at alternative methods of making a living although it would be nice to have the drive and imagination required to set up a business.

But the point I also wanted to make here is that we are so much quicker to complain than we are to praise.  Perhaps anger is a stronger emotion.  It can certainly motivate us to pick up pen and paper (or turn on the computer) and rattle off a complaint when things are not to our satisfaction but can you remember the last time you wrote a letter of thanks for good service?  I’m not sure I can.  Note to self: must do better!

Saturday 15 December 2012

Wake me in the New Year!

This time of year has been difficult for me the past few years and 2012 is proving no exception.  I'm trying to focus on the positives - we have invites for Christmas Day (Nick's brother and his family) and Boxing Day (one of Nick's sisters and most of the family) and most things are ok in our little world.

But I'm still struggling with the run up to christmas.  I don't know if it's the weather/winter season - it has been very cold here although today is warmer or if it's the first christmas without Mum although she wasn't exactly here for the last few years.  It's probably a combination of all these things together with a horrendous work schedule and other complications.

My kitchen looks so much better but there are still things to be done.  My house looks a tip.  Our daughter is back home indefinitely and hasn't yet got all her things organised in her room so there are still things around the house.  I'm trying not to pressure her too much as she has split from her boyfriend of 7 years and is also having to look for a job as her contract expires in March.  She too is not in a good place.

My youngest will be home in January after over 7 months in the states so all 3 kids will be back at home.  Good job we have 2 bathrooms.  So I'm trying to be positive but that takes energy that I don't seem to have at the moment.  Today will be a wasted day - it was the staff christmas party last night which was a really nice evening, a much needed distraction, but too much wine consumed and too little water has produced the very predictable hangover.  Some lessons it seems are never learned!

Work anecdote for yesterday:
I'm definitely getting a reputation for being a grinch at work but there are a few others around.  We are also developing a group of microwave grinches.  Changes to lunch arrangements has meant that sometimes there is a high demand for the 2 microwaves we have in the staff kitchen.  It seems it's especially annoying when someone "cooks" in the microwave rather than just "reheating" because it takes more time.  A meeting set up to discuss the role of teaching assistants in the classroom got hijacked with their moans and complaints about rotas and the ongoing microwave saga.  The complaint seemed to really be what are management going to do about it?  Well they should be warned - if anyone raises the question directly to me the answer will be:
If you lot cannot resolve this conflict my answer will be to remove the thing causing it, i.e. the microwaves, because we are not obliged to provide them!  Or I might just cut the plugs off anyway!

Sunday 4 November 2012

Calm before the storm

Well we have finally finished emptying the kitchen out ready for the work to start.  It's taken a lot longer than I thought it would so it was just as well that we had this week to get prepared.  There is stuff all over the house.  Good thing Matt is away - a lot of it is in his room!  

It was strange yesterday as all 3 of our kids were out of the country.  But Rebecca is home today after a nice relaxing week in Tunisia..  

Tomorrow we're all back at work.  So I'm managing to relax for a bit this evening.  Can still get to the sofa and the remote controls for the TV!  It's been an awful day weatherwise - woke up to pouring rain.  The rain has been so bad overnight that the fireworks display by us has been cancelled.  Apparently the ground is too sodden.  Unfortunately the area of ground they use for the display is where they had the temporary police quarters during the olympics, including horse stabling.  The ground hasn't fully recovered from that yet so no display tonight.  Hopefully the event will be rescheduled.  The site is so close to us that we can see much of the display from our bedroom window although I usually walk nearer to the site to see it more clearly.

The cats of course hate the firework displays!  Although they are not particularly happy right now as they're not sure what's going on with the kitchen.  I've had to move their food and the litter tray so it's all a bit confusing for them and of course when the builders arrive they will probably just run for cover! 

This week could be a bit trying.

Friday 2 November 2012

Being Productive

Well this has certainly been a productive week - we have produced lots of rubbish!  Actually the rubbish was already here and now a lot of it is not!   One of the things we are having done with the kitchen improvements is to fit a TV aerial socket in the kitchen - our roof aerial is currently connected in the lounge but we want a socket in the kitchen as well - since the UK switched to digital the reception on the portable via an internal aerial is pretty useless.

To be able to do that means taking a wire down from the lounge into the cellar - under the floorboards and across to the kitchen.  Actually it's a pretty simple job - now that we have cleared the rubbish from the cellar!  The cellar extends underneath the hallway and lounge but only part of it can be walked in.  The other part is a ledge that is about 3 feet higher than the ground level and 3 feel below the lounge floor level.  The ledge had lots of rubbish on it - you know the sort of thing - offcuts of wood, etc, those things you keep - just in case you might need them one day!  Some of it was left by the previous owners, such as a bath panel and an overhead drying rack amongst other things.  No way could we expect someone to go crawling around that to sort out the wiring.  So the rubbish had to go.

It was a horrible job but the cellar is already looking so much better.  We had accumulated lots of other stuff too like tins of paint - kept for when you need to do that bit of touching up!  Well as most of the tins hadn't been touched in years I didn't think we were likely to start using them now - especially as I'm on a mission to get lots of decorating done.

We're fortunate that our dump/tip (or civic amenity centre as it's also known) takes all household rubbish for free and there are various collection points for wood, paint, recyceable goods so we've made a few trips there this week and hopefully not too much has had to end up in landfill.  That's the royal we of course!  I've been once and then only because it was on the way to somewhere else. Nick's done the trips but then I did venture onto the cellar ledge to pass out the stuff - it was very dusty down there so we're about even.

As to our other tasks for the week, we both had a clean bill of health from the dentist but both need new glasses as our prescriptions have changed.  The car also had a pain free service - nothing needed doing and as we'd arranged an extended warranty when we bought the car there was no charge. I'm plodding on with my physio exercises and today I finally got my foot looked at.  As I suspected this has only led to a referral to the hospital orthopaedic team.  I wonder how long that will take to come through!

The floor tiles for the kitchen have arrived.  There are just a couple of bits we still need to get from IKEA which we'll do over the weekend.  Matthew has picked a good week to be away.  He is off to Switzerland tomorrow for a week for training.  Fortunately he is not one of the many people that have been laid off by UBS this week.

Well now I need to get on with packing up the kitchen - it's another good exercise in sorting out what we really need to keep and what needs to be recycled/rehomed.

Never a dull moment here!

Wednesday 31 October 2012

Halloween Grump

I must admit I'm not a great lover of halloween but I do usually make sure I have treats on hand in case anyone ventures to my door.  This year I wasn't that organised so I turned a deaf ear on those who called tonight.  There were 3 disappointed groups.  And it was fairly obvious someone was at home - lights on, TV playing etc but no way was I going to open the door without any treats to hand.  But fortunately we don't seem to have suffered in any way - no eggs thrown at the door etc.

Been a busy day.  Nick and I were up and out early for dentist check ups.  We both had a clean bill of health there so that was good.  We then went on to the rubbish tip to offload another car load of rubbish cleared out from the cellar.  (Nick had already taken one lot yesterday.)  So progress is being made.

We then did some shopping and went to his Mum's for lunch.  We stayed until about 4 and then came back.  Annoyingly though I left my phone behind so I had to pop back after dinner to collect it.

I had a lazy evening apart from doing my physio exercises.  They don't take long to do but one in particular is very painful.  Hopefully it will show some improvement soon.

Tomorrow I have to be up early again to take the car to be serviced.  That's just a 5 minute walk away so very convenient for us.  In the afternoon it's the optician.  We're certainly fitting a  lot into this week!

There is still work to be done in preparation for the kitchen work but we've made a good start on the cellar - they will need access there to do the electrics but it's going to be a busy few days making sure everything is ready.

Monday 29 October 2012

Big update!

So my shoulder is frozen and I'm sitting here with ice on it!  Finally got my physio appointment today so now I'm icing the affected shoulder, exercising to keep the limited movement I've got and using heat on the neck muscles that are tense because the shoulder is stiff.  Will see how it goes.

This week is half-term so am catching up on a lot of stuff.  Went to the physio today and then went to the foot clinic to check up on my appointment - they cancelled the one I had on 5th and said they would send me a new appointment by post.  Well good job I checked - my appointment is booked for this Friday but I've had no letter!

So I have that on Friday, an eye test on Thursday and also trying to fit in a dentist check up.  I just hope by the weekend I haven't been totally diagnosed as falling apart!

We also went to IKEA today to get the additional units for the kitchen - the builder is going to start next Monday.  That's a week later than planned but it's actually good because we still have lots of clearing out to do.  We also ordered tiles for the floor today so we are making some progress.

This last month has been quite hard.  Work has been really stressful mainly because so much piled up earlier in the year when Mum died and I've never really caught up.  It reached a point where things came to a head recently and hopefully things will get better now.  I was certainly not in a good place before that, hence the lack of blogging.  I am the world's worst at asking for help but I ended up having to shout for it.  It was either that or a nervous breakdown.  But fortunately my boss and the deputy were very good about it and help will be sorted.

I'm keeping an eye on hurricane Sandy at the moment.  My youngest in Burlington Vermont.  He seems to be attracting hurricanes this year - he was in New Orleans when Isaac hit earlier this year.  Hopefully it won't be too bad when it reaches where he is and I hope that it doesn't do too much damage on the east coast.  Our weather isn't great at times but at least we don't get those sort of extreme situations.

Right I've had enough of the ice, it's time to get the hot water bottle now.  Hopefully normal blogging service will be resumed soon.

Thursday 27 September 2012

Still here!

It must be bad when someone asks if you’re ok in blogworld.  And then you check when you last blogged and it’s a looooong time!

I am just so busy at work at the moment.  One day seems to be just merging into the next one until suddenly it’s Friday and the weekend.  And weekends seem to fly by.  We had a quiz night a couple of Saturdays ago and last week was Nick’s nephew’s wedding.  It was lovely.  We were so lucky with the weather – it was a beautiful sunny day if a little chilly and the bride looked beautiful and the day was just great.  Tomorrow we’re off to Wales for my niece’s wedding on Saturday.  I’m leaving work early so hopefully we will get ahead of the traffic – and hopefully the weather will be kind to us again.  We’ve booked a B & B for Friday and Saturday night so it will be a nice break.

So lots of good things going on but there are some down sides.  My shoulder is worse and my physio appointment is not until the end of October.  I could arrange to go privately but I’m just putting up with it for now but dressing can be a bit challenging some days – I try to be smart for work but some dresses for example I need Nick there to be able to zip me up!  I nearly had to change my wardrobe plans the other day because he nearly left before I was dressed.

I have also finally got an appointment for my foot to be checked out – that’s next Friday.  So maybe eventually things might improve although I’m concerned that they might suggest a surgical remedy.

On a different track we’re finally moving forward with work in the kitchen.  When we refitted the kitchen a few years ago we never really finished it – the floor was never done and now it looks awful.  The ceiling also has developed cracks.  Hopefully that can be boarded over as it’s lathe and plaster so if it has to come down it will be really messy!  Anyway the ceiling and the floor will be done which means moving everything out of the kitchen.  So then I got to thinking about maybe fitting in some more units, building in the fridge, changing the dining furniture.  I’d got a fairly good idea of what I wanted and then I asked my sister-in-law to give me her advice.  She’s really good at home décor – her kitchen is lovely.  So she came and looked and made totally different suggestions.  So then last night we went to IKEA for more inspiration (my original units are from there).

So the next thing to do is to move the furniture around and relocate the fridge to see if it works before committing to anything.  Hopefully I’ll have made my mind up by the time the builder is ready at the end of October.  But now I'm off to bed after another long day.  Will have to remember the camera this weekend and take some pics of the bride.  Maybe take some before pics of the kitchen as well!

Tuesday 11 September 2012

Oversleeping! 11th September 2012

I got very engrossed in the tennis last night – US Open final – Djokovic V Murray.  I hadn’t intended to but Nick had gone to the theatre so I was watching some catch up TV and then I realised the tennis was on so I switched to that and got hooked.  When Nick got home he joined me and we kept watching and watching…… It was 1.00 am our time and it was 2 sets all so we decided enough was enough as we both had work today so I set the TV to record.   

Well this morning I woke up and was thinking it was about 6.30 so I was debating if it was too early to turn on my phone to check who had won.  (There are often message on my phone so it beeps etc when I first turn it on and I didn’t want to disturb Nick.)  Anyway I couldn’t bear the suspense so I turned it on to discover Murray had won!  That was such a relief – he has come so close on occasions but never won a grand slam event before but I did hope this was going to be his year, especially as he won the Olympic title this summer.   

So that was good.  The time on the clock was not!  8.33 am  OMG I’m not sure how we managed to sleep through the alarms but obviously we did thanks to the late night.  So now I am off to bed as I can’t be late to work two days running!  Night night.

PS the schedules were all messed up because the match was so long and when I watched the recording it stopped - just after Murray clinched Match Point!  Whew.

Saturday 8 September 2012

Update, Saturday 8/9/12

A quick update!   

The electrician came on Thursday but couldn’t locate the problem immediately and wasn’t able to spend a lot of time on searching – promised to come back on Friday to sort it out.  So I managed to use various extension leads to enable the kettle to be boiled, the TV to work and the internet to be connected.  Had to disable the catch on the cat flap so that all and sundry could get in but we didn’t seem to have any unwanted visitors overnight.   

He came back on Friday as promised and located the fault which was on one of the kitchen sockets.  Unfortunately he wasn’t able to reconnect the socket without major disruption to the floor or the walls so we opted to remove it.  When I have the work we’re planning for the kitchen done we will be moving and adding to the sockets we have so it’s not a major problem.   

However the 3 trips home and back during work time meant my work schedule was disrupted so I left work on Friday feeling quite frazzled, especially as we are experiencing a mini heatwave here at the moment.  My office has a lovely sunny outlook but it’s not conducive to sitting for too long at the computer which is what I need to be doing right now.  Well not literally right now – it’s Saturday!  And I am being lazy.   

Have managed to catch up with Michael during the week – he’s fine, back in Vermont and settling into his volunteer placement.  Matt’s girlfriend Amy is here this weekend which is nice as we haven’t seen her for a while with holidays etc.  She is just about to start her teacher training course.   

Rebecca has also had power problems this week – but external failures so the power company have had to resolve them.  When I spoke to her earlier she was in the middle of her second power cut – not good when you’re off to a ball later and need to dry and straighten your hair!  Fortunately while we were talking the power was restored.  Just hope they’ve fixed it properly this time.  Ok, off to do some chores now.

PS - Guess what?  When I rang the foot clinic as instructed by letter to get an appointment I just got the answerphone again telling me that if I was ringing as an existing client to make an appointment, to leave my details and they would post one to me!  Why can't they just post it out in the first place!  I'm looking forward to being able to provide feedback on their service ;)

Thursday 6 September 2012

Wendysday 5th September 2012

Well I was nicely settled in front of the TV with my laptop in place ready to start blogging and a glass of the red stuff within reach.  So definitely sounding like a Wendysday apart from a few aggravations at work – don’t you just love it when you end up clearing up after someone else’s mistake!

But……suddenly the TV just died, as did the cable box.  So did my son’s TV and when I investigated further none of the electric sockets were working.  Fortunately the lights were still working and after investigation I discovered that only some of the sockets seem to be causing a problem.  (Those in the kitchen and the living room.)  Unfortunately I don’t know what the problem is exactly, just know that if I try to reset that fuse, the circuit breaker kicks in and takes all the sockets out.  So I’ve just had to leave them off for now – have managed to use an extension lead and plug the fridge into a socket in the cellar but have no cooker and can’t use the kettle or toaster so making breakfast in the morning will be a challenge. 

I have managed to arrange for an electrician to come in the morning so hopefully he will be able to track down and solve the problem.  What I need to check before I go to bed is whether the cats can get back in through the cat flap – it operates electronically but I’m not sure what happens when there is no power.  I know they can get out, just not sure if they can get in.

Fun and games but on balance, NOT a Wendysday! 

Monday 3 September 2012

Update on feet!

Heard back from the foot clinic today - guess what?  I now have to telephone them to make an appointment.  That should be interesting!

Sunday 2 September 2012

Safe and sound! 020912

We heard from Michael today.  He has managed to leave New Orleans and make his way back to Vermont.  They had lost power for several days but apart from that and the enforced lack of air conditioning all was okay.  That’s a relief. 

I’ve had a lazy day today – a group of us were out on a hen night last night – Nick’s nephew is getting married in 3 weeks so we went out for a meal for his fiancée.  I stayed at his sister’s house afterwards but some of the youngsters went on to a club after the meal so Rebecca ended up at his other sister’s house so I had to go and pick her up.  It was lunchtime before I got home.   

I spent the afternoon getting the house tidy and sorting out my things ready for tomorrow.  Back to work properly.  Still have the aftermath of the break in to deal with plus the backlog of post and e-mails, will be off to bed soon so that I’m fit and raring to go in the morning!   

Although not as fit as I’d like – I have to arrange physio for my shoulder.  Hopefully that appointment will be organised more easily than the appointment I’m still waiting for to get my foot looked at.  I sent in that referral at the end of July.   

When we got back from holiday I hadn’t heard anything so I rang them.  They seem to constantly have their answerphone left on so after several tries I left a message.  No response.  So this week I tried again – I got a different response “We are extremely busy, your call is being held in a queue.  You are # (deep breath, wait for how far down the queue I am) ONE!  First in the queue!  Hooray, progress, will actually get to speak to someone.  Except I didn’t.  I suddenly heard a voice say “Just putting you through.” Putting me through!  How can you putting me through?  You don’t know which department I want!  Then there was a recorded message thanking me for contacting the physiotherapy department but unfortunately they were too busy to answer my call and would I please leave a message.  Of course I wouldn’t like to leave them a message.  They’re not even in the same building as the foot clinic!   

I did eventually get to speak to someone only to find that they apparently had not received the referral.  So now I have hand delivered a copy.  Hopefully I won’t have to wait too long for an appointment. Off to bed now.  Hope you've all had a good weekend.

Saturday 1 September 2012

Work in progress 010912

I’m gradually moving forward with work that needs doing in the house.  Now that we’ve almost sorted out Mum’s affairs I know that I need to get back on track.   

We had the damp problem in the kitchen sorted this week – nice load of dust from the rendering and plaster!  And the builder has been back to check out what needs doing next – originally he was just going to do the ceiling, floor and re-decorate.  Now I want some extra kitchen units fitted.  

But it was two steps forward and one step back – the new boiler we had installed recently needs boxing in and I was hoping to get an integrated fridge to fit underneath in so it was one tall cupboard unit to match my existing units but that’s not going to work – the boiler needs to be boxed in to the ceiling and the height from floor to ceiling is too high for standard units and to try and get it custom made was just going to be ridiculous so I’ve opted to keep my existing free standing fridge and just get the boiler boxed in.  But am still going ahead with extra units on the other side of the room.  

He won’t be able to start work until well into October but that will give the new plaster time to really dry out and for me to declutter the room.  For starters I have two shelves full of cookery books and we probably only use about 6-10 of them on a regular basis!  Plus other stuff that hasn’t seen the light of day for longer than I care to remember.  Lots of freecycling/donating to charity shops to be done!   

Not very motivated so far today though – slightly pre-occupied by the fact that my youngest is currently in New Orleans and haven’t heard from him since Tuesday.  He reassured me before then that they had a full tank of petrol in the car if they had to evacuate, candles, torches, etc and would be fine.  Would just be nice to know he is fine and not knee deep in water! 

Wednesday 29 August 2012

Wendysday 29th August 2012

Nearly forgot it was Wendysday – we’ve just had a long weekend here so Monday was a holiday – it throws the week out for me.   

We had a lovely weekend though – our usual family camping trip.  The weather wasn’t too bad, it wasn’t up to sunny summer August weather all the time but it wasn’t continually raining so we survived.  The storm on Friday evening was a bit worrying though – we had torrential rain, thunder and lightning and some of the tents got a bit soggy but we had enough sun on Saturday to dry them out.  It’s just a nice relaxing time with the extended family.   

Today will be a mixed day I think – I’m having some damp sorted out in the kitchen so that is a mess at the moment that I will probably have to clean up later.  (Hopefully – may not be finished until tomorrow, although really that is just the start of a lot of messy work in there – ceiling and floor both need to be done next…..)

I have to pop into work.  We had a break in at the school over the weekend so I was there yesterday making sure everything was sorted out.  Today I need to go in and download CCTV data for the police.  Not sure that it’s going to be very useful.  The thieves were very organised – they cut phones lines so that the security centre wasn’t notified when they triggered the alarm.  They brought tools so they could break through two locked doors and obviously a vehicle to transport away all the lap tops they stole.  Just so depressing as it’s the third break in this year.  Each time we have added to and improved our security and yet they still get in!  

After that I’m having lunch with some friends so that will cheer me up.  Next I have a doctor’s appointment.  I have a really sore shoulder and moving it has become quite restricted.  Getting dressed is the worst thing.  Will probably end up just being referred for physio but will see what else she suggest.  It actually isn’t too painful, unless I try to move it too much!   

And then this evening we are going out to eat – I have some vouchers to use at Prezzo that expire on 31st so tonight was the only night we could really use them and it will be easier than trying to cook in the kitchen at the moment.   

Hmm lunch and dinner out I think on balance it’s definitely Wendysday!

Wednesday 22 August 2012

Wendysday 22 Aug 2012

A lazy Wendysday so far.

For anyone new to this blog I came up with the idea of Wendysday back in 2007 when I was blogging on Yahoo 360.  The idea being:

“Nope, not a misspelling.

Why shouldn’t it be my day? Do I only get to have one day a year? i.e. my birthday (yes ok I know I also get mother’s day if the kids remember) but I’m taking over Wednesdays. They will be about me! (No this idea is not very original – I’ve adapted it from other blogs – hopefully no one will mind.”

It started off with information about me and my family or various topics but evolved into was it a Wendysday or not.  I.e. had I had a good day or not.  Some days it was clearly not as I didn’t even get to post a blog.

Today I’ve been busy so far copying blogs from the sinking Multiply site and posting them here on blogger.   They’re on a separate blog page that I will set up properly once I’ve got all the blogs on it and then link it here.  It will take a while as it’s interesting to read back over things I’ve written.  Much of it I’ve just deleted and sometimes I think this page should be Wendy’s Whinge rather than what it is but I guess it’s a balance of both and maybe Waffle-with-Wendy is a bit less offputting.  Just hope no-one comes here looking for recipes!

If my name began with P say Patricia for example I could very easily have Procrastinating with Patricia.  But yesterday I did do two things on my procrastination list.  I boxed up a load of books and took them to a local charity bookshop and more importantly I sorted out ordering a new plaque for the garden of remembrance for my Mum and the entry for the book of remembrance.  Once the plaque is ready her ashes will be put under the rose bush we already had for my Dad and the new joint plaque will be put there.  The entry in the remembrance book will be on 19th July – that is the day my Dad died so he already has an entry on that date so we decided to keep them together.  It didn’t seem fair on Rebecca to have Mum’s entry on her date of death as that is her birthday and I didn’t want it on Mum’s birthday as we are likely to be away then.

Mum’s birthday is actually today.  She would have been 90 if she’d reached it so it is a sad day but thankfully she is now at peace and I did not want her to reach this milestone.  It would have given us another birthday dilemma of how to celebrate it when she would not have known what all the fuss was about. 

I need to get myself moving now as we’re going camping this weekend and I’ve done nothing to prepare for that yet and I’m going tomorrow!  I also need to have my kitchen ready for some work to be done on the external wall which is starting on Tuesday.

In case I don’t get back for a bit have a lovely weekend especially those in the UK where we have a bank holiday on Monday.

Tuesday 21 August 2012

Cross posting

It’s a good thing I’m still on school holidays.  Sorting out all these blog changes is taking up a lot of time!  But it beats cleaning, sorting, decluttering etc that I should be doing plus a few other things I am procrastinating over.  I thought I had got it sussed so that I would just post on Blogger and then add links to my other sites to keep friends in the loop but I’m not sure that Blogster liked that idea.  My first two attempts just seemed to disappear.  Unless in my sleepy stupor (was working on it late) I pressed the wrong button.  Or maybe they didn’t like me blocking all comments on Blogster and getting people to comment on Blogger.   

Anyway it seems I can cross post on Blogster to Blogger – well at least there is a share button that says I can so I am going to give that a go with this blog and see how it works. 

Had a nice day yesterday – my daughter dropped in having been at the V festival (music festival) for the weekend so she was returning things that she had borrowed.  (e.g. tent, airbed, pump…..and that would be a wet tent that we then had to dry off)  Anyway she ended up staying for the rest of the day.  It was nice to have company and we did sort out some books that can now be offloaded.  Good to get the tent dry as well although we will be using it again this weekend.  Hopefully the good weather will hold but there is the promise of showers.  Showers I can cope with, constant rain….no thank you!   

Well going to see what this looks like in Blogger now.

PS  Didn't work too well - just got a link posted here back to blogster.  I want it to work the other way around so I've copied the post here in full.  Will go back to putting links on the other sites.  I like it here!

Monday 20 August 2012

Getting the hang of things

Well I think I’m settling in to Blogger as my site of choice.  I’ve linked it to google reader and I’m now able to catch up with everyone there and link back to your posts.   

I’ve decided just to post links to my blogs on the sites where my other friends are e.g. Blogster and Ipernity so that you can keep up too.  I’ve enabled anonymous commenting so you should all be able to leave comments on the BLOGGER pages but I have set them to be moderated so don’t panic if they don’t appear straight away.  Just lets me stop any silly comments showing up.  

Not sure how frequently I’ll be blogging once I get back to work, 2 weeks today :(  time will tell.  We have different attitudes to change.  Some people seem to thrive on change and embrace it.  Others like me probably don’t like it too much but you have to get on with it.  Losing my Mum this year has meant changes.  I no longer have to work out when to fit visiting in or getting her washing done.  So life is easier in that respect but there is a gaping hole that has to be filled.  

Grief is a funny thing.  I expected that having felt as if I was already grieving for Mum over such a long time as she was gradually lost to us through the Alzheimer’s that her passing would be a relief, a time to move on.  I was kidding myself if I thought I’d done my grieving.  I know it will get easier, experience tells me that it will. 

Sunday 19 August 2012

Unreasonable or just hot and bothered?

It has been incredibly hot this weekend.  We have recorded the hottest temperatures of the year so far.  Yes it is finally summer but we are still complaining – it is too hot.  Even with all the windows open, fans on etc it is very hot and sticky.  Not much has been done this weekend.  I did manage to read a book.  I did manage to do some ironing when it cooled a little yesterday evening.  But we have not been very energetic at all.  

We Brits are not happy unless we are complaining about the weather it seems.  Well I found something else to complain about today.  I live opposite a large expanse of common land, some of which is used for football.  For some time now a large group of men have been coming over on Sunday afternoons and playing a friendly game.  That’s fine.  Good for them being able to play in this heat.  Trouble is, when they have finished playing they then hang around and socialise.  Only they don’t socialise on the pitch, they come back to their cars and hang around there by the road.  Just along the road opposite my house.  And they are very noisy.  Because of the layout of the houses we can even hear them in the back garden.  

Today because I had front windows open I could hear them in my lounge while watching TV.  Some of them are still there now.  I’m writing this in bed and I can still hear them.  So I have reported them for anti-social behaviour.   That probably seems unfair but I’m not brave enough to go and confront them and ask them to keep the noise down.  I tried to be fair in my report as well, explaining that if they did their congregating on the playing field it would be fine but coming back to the road is not.  

I think I’m definitely turning into a grumpy old woman!

Thursday 16 August 2012

A Downside to the Olympics

I loved the Olympics.  I thought both the opening and closing ceremonies were great if a little (ok, very) GB orientated.  The way our Team GB out performed all expectations (well most of them) was amazing and the atmosphere at the park which we were able to sample was wonderful.

The improvements to our infrastructure can already be felt - our transport links are excellent and hopefully a team that delivered such a wonderful event will be able to ensure we have a legacy worth having in the future.

But - oh yes there is a but.  I've found something to moan about.

The olympics will be affecting our Family Camp this year!  This is not good.  I am not impressed.

For newcomers to this site, Family Camp is our annual get together on the last summer bank holiday - the last weekend in August.  (The Monday is a national holiday.)  We get together a lot as an extended family - there are regular celebrations - baptisms, communions, confirmations, weddings and sometimes, sadly, funerals.  We are a close knit group.  We also always go to a local camp site on the holiday weekend.  We have been going for many years.  There can be anything between 30-40 of us on site at any given time ranging in age from virtually newborns to Grandma in her 80s.  

One advantage of the site is that it is close to all of us - only 30 minutes by car from our house so not a disaster if we forget anything or need to pop home to feed the cats!  It's also served by the London Tube system.

Which makes it a prime location to advertise as somewhere for people attending the olympics to stay!

Yes I know you're saying the olympics are over but the Paraolympics start that weekend!  So not only will we have to book to ensure we have space, we will also have to pay more as the prices have been hiked.

I'm waiting on feedback from other family members (I'm sure we will still go) so I can then book.  Watch this space!

Wednesday 15 August 2012

Wednesday 15th August 2012

Well it is Wednesday, and I am preparing a blog, so I guess it must be a Wendysday!

Familiar friends will understand, but for anyone new here, and of course that includes me, Wendysday blogs were something that I started in a former life (Multiply and before that Yahoo 360).  It started off as a means of telling visitors about myself, eg my favourite foods, books etc.  Things I’d done, e.g jobs and so on.

When I ran out of inspiration along those lines it became more of  “Was it Wendysday or not” depending on how the day had gone.

Well today is definitely a Wendysday so far.  Hubby brought me a cup of tea in bed before he left for work.  I’ve had breakfast in bed (although I did go down and prepare it myself) and I’ve been relaxing and blogging ever since.

For newcomers, I’m not usually this lazy, well not often, but I work full time in a school so I’m on holiday at the moment.  Of course that doesn’t mean there is nothing to be done but I had a really productive day yesterday – did lots of chores, shopping etc and the cleaner came so the house is clean and tidy.  I’m on top of the washing so I can spare some relaxation time.

I have a few things on my to do list that are earmarked for today so I will move myself – soon – just not yet.  I have an episode of “Borgen” on my laptop I need to watch before it expires.  I’ve really got into these Scandinavian programmes lately.  I was glued to “The Killing” and then heard about Borgen which is a drama about the political set up in Denmark. 

So I’m going to post this blog, then watch Borgen and then…… hmm maybe I should get up next.  Catch you later.

Sunday 12 August 2012

Welcome & Here we go again!

Welcome to my blog.  I'm a Multiply refugee (and a Yahoo 360 prior to that) so I'm starting over, again!  I've had this account for a while (sett up so I could follow something) but I've never actually posted here.

My multiply friends have gone off in various directions so I'm trying to see what works best for me to keep in touch with as many as possible while making new friends.

No idea how to make things pretty yet - this will definitely be a work in progress for a while!