Monday 29 June 2015

Being respectably lazy.

One of the questions on last week's Hodgepodge was about whether it's ever respectable to be lazy.

Well I think it can be as I've just had several lazy days.  Starting last Friday, which was my birthday.  I spent time in the morning collecting a relative from hospital and taking her home.  The drive gave us a nice chance to catch up and have a one to one chat.  

I then popped in to see a friend on the way home for a cup of tea. This gave me the opportunity to meet her daughter's new kitten which is a bengal kitten.  She is gorgeous and still really small at the moment.  But already ruling the roost - apparently she spits and hisses at their other cat who is quite old and a big ball of fluff.  Hopefully they will soon adapt to one another.

Then I got home in time for a visit from one of my oldest friends.  (As in the length of time we've known one another.)  Again it was good to have some catch up time.

In the evening hubby and I went out for a meal (a greek restaurant in nearby Westfield) which was nice and we finished up in the local bar that he usually goes to on a Friday evening where a group of musicians usually get together and have a session.

On Saturday we had a BBQ in the evening and all the kids and their partners were here plus a couple of friends so that was nice.  Our eldest son and his partner stayed over so were here for breakfast on Sunday.  They left before lunch so that they had time to get back to Nottingham and catch up on studying (him - accountancy exams) and school work (her - she's a Maths teacher).

Hubby went out to a music event in the afternoon so I had some quiet time on my own and caught up with all the Hodgepodge posts.

So I was respectably lazy although I did do shopping and get the house ready for the BBQ.

Today I've been more in the swing of things, catching up on chores and doing washing etc and cleaning the BBQ.  Not doing anything too fast though as we definitely have summer weather at last.

Wednesday 24 June 2015

First post challenge

I've noticed a few bloggers doing a first post challenge so I'm gatecrashing.

 Here are the rules:

Copy-paste, link, pingback or whatever way you want to, your first post.
Here's mine:
 First Blogger post

State what type of post that was. E.G. Introduction, Story, Poem

A very brief introduction done on 12th August 2012.

Explain why that was your first post.

It wasn't actually my very first post but it was my first post here on blogger.  I'd originally started out on Yahoo and when that folded I switched to Multiply and then to Blogger.  Hopefully I won't be switching again any time soon.  I've also toyed with Ipernity but didn't like that much and I do have a Wordpress account so that I can follow other people. I also use Google+ but I'm not a huge fan.

I originally got into blogging because my cousin encouraged me to.  She used to blog a lot but recently she has been developing her own home business (making and selling a variety of items) so her etsy site and sewing are taking priority.

Having said that I was looking at my stats.  In 2012 I posted 22 times.  In 2013 that dropped to 15 and in 2014 I only managed a measely 5 posts!

I'm pleased to see that this year I'm up to 65 posts already.  Most of those were generated by taking part in the A-Z challenge but hopefully I'll be able to keep up the momentum.  Especially now that I don't have a stressful time consuming job to worry about.

Nominate 5 other bloggers. Five because I know the pain of opening a lot of tabs at once.

Well I'm not nominating anyone so no pressure but if you want to join in just follow the rules.

Wednesday's Hodgepodge 24/6/15

Wednesday's Hodgepodge is brought to us courtesy of Joyce at 

Pop over there to see other posts and if you want to join in add your blog post to the Linky List at the end of Joyce's post.

Have fun!

1.  June 23rd is National Pink Day. What's your favourite something pink?.

One of my favourite pink things is the dress my daughter wore for her end of school prom.  It was a ball gown with a full skirt and lots of tulle.  There were black flowers on the material but of course the main reason I liked it was because she looked such a picture in it.
2.  What did you enjoy most about gym class when you were in school? How about the least?
I did not enjoy gym class at all.  I was very skinny as a child and very self-conscious.
3.   What memory is brought to mind by the smell of roses?
My parents.  They both loved roses and we had them in our garden when I was growing up.  I tried growing some in my own garden but wasn’t very successful
4.   Do you prefer to read or write?
I enjoy doing both but I read more than I write.  And I don’t think I “write” as such. Maybe one day.
5.  Sam Keen is quoted as saying, 'Deep summer is when laziness finds respectability.' Would you agree? Is laziness ever respectable? How will you be lazy this summer?
I’d definitely agree because some days it’s just too hot to be doing very much and you need to slow down.  Of course that’s not possible for everyone but I often feel I’m being lazy since I stopped working.  But then I look at what I’ve achieved each day rather than focussing on what still needs to be done.  So I’m sure I’ll be lazy with reading and blogging and lunching with friends in between trying to be productive and make progress on my to do list this summer.
6.  The Florida Keys, Disney World, or a resort somewhere on the Gulf Coast...which Florida destination would you choose (and why) if the trip were today?
Well I don’t know enough about Florida to make an informed choice but I’d be looking for somewhere with a quiet beach and a nice pool for me to relax but with places to explore for hubby.  And then interesting places to eat at the end of the day.
7.  What question do you hate to answer?  
Where shall we go on holiday?  Hubby and I find it hard to agree on that one.
8.  Insert your own random thought here.
I’m not calling myself retired just yet but if I can get used to being respectably lazy I might not be finding another job anytime soon.

An improving week

So far my week has improved each day but maybe I shouldn't say that as it's only Wednesday!

On Monday I had a hospital appointment for a colonoscopy.  For anyone who's had that done you will know it involves a bit of preparation - enough said! It was fun on Sunday being able to eat nothing and having MIL and offspring here for Sunday lunch.  For those of you who haven't had the pleasure it's not as bad as you anticipate.

We arrived in good time for my appointment only to be told I wasn't on the list!  The receptionist asked me if I'd done all the prep.  I managed to reply sweetly that I had.  (Why would I turn up if I hadn't done the prep?????)  Fortunately they fitted me in but of course there was a lot of waiting around.

The good news was that I was given the all clear before coming home so that was a major relief.  The bad news was that, having opted for conscious sedation for the procedure, I couldn't have any alcohol for 24 hours.  I survived.

Yesterday, bouyed I think from cutting my ties with school last week and having the medical all clear, I decided it was time to tackle my shed.  It's a job that's been on the to do list for a while but it was warm and sunny yesterday so I tackled it head on.  Everything was taken out.  I then swept all the cobwebs, dust etc out.  Good job my daughter-in-law wasn't around - she can't bear spiders.
After the clearout

Next I sorted out what needed to be thrown out - some old garden chair frames that had rusted, an old lawnmower that had died and couldn't be economically fixed and an old BBQ that again had rusted and was falling apart. There were also two bikes of the kids which will need cleaning up and new homes found.

Once I'd done the sorting I was then able to put back only the stuff that needed to be kept.  I was also able to put my daughter's bike that we are storing (temporarily!) into the shed, freeing up space in our hallway.  Hubby has been moaning so long about having 3 bikes in the hallway.  But typical of hubby, he doesn't do anything to solve/alleviate the problem.  (Our house is terraced so there is no side entrance and to get anything out to the garden involves going down a flight of stairs so not practical to keep bikes anywhere but the entrance hallway really.)
Waiting to be sorted

I then arranged a bulky waste collection by the council for the rubbish.  (They are quite good at removing rubbish for you and it's free!)  Once I'd done that I placed the rubbish in the front garden as instructed.  Well, the council man has just knocked and asked about my rubbish which, yes you've guessed it, had disappeared.  I've no idea when or how it went but it's gone!  If someone could make use of my rubbish they are welcome to it.

Today I think I've earned some blogging time :)

Sunday 21 June 2015

A funny old week

I’ve tried to keep to routines this week but it hasn’t been easy.  A family friend, Del, died last week which was sad but he’d lived to the age of 93 and had not been in great health for some time so it was a release for him but of course difficult for those left behind.
His body was received into our church late on Wednesday so I attended the service for that.  Del used to be a Governor at the school where I worked so some of my former work colleagues were there and we ended up going to the pub for a drink so it was nice to catch up.  On Thursday I collected my Mother-in-law and with hubby we attended the funeral and reception afterwards.  It was a lovely send-off and the weather was good so we were able to sit outside at the reception which was held at the local tennis clubhouse.

My Mother-in-law has stayed with us since Thursday as it was our weekend to have her and on Friday hubby’s sister from France came with her husband for a visit.  They stayed over until Saturday morning before heading off to visit other family members.

It was nice to be able to put them up without any hassle.  One advantage of an empty nest.

Today we have our youngest and eldest offspring here with their partners for dinner so that will be a nice get together, especially for MIL.

Lots going on but I’ve done very little walking!  One thing we also did this week was to return items to work.  I still had my laptop, keys, security fobs, debit card etc belonging to the school that needed to be returned.  I couldn’t face going in so Nick did that for me.  It was closure in a way as I now have no reason to go to the school and there is no reason for them to contact me.  But considering I’ve had no contact from the Headteacher or Leadership team since I was off sick and subsequently resigned I’m not surprised that no one had asked for my things back!

Making that break was quite hard but because of the funeral this week I have actually seen all my former office team now so at least they know what happened.  From all accounts things are not getting any better at the school and more staff are leaving at the end of this term.

It’s taken a while but I’m glad to be out of the firing line and I am enjoying getting on with the rest of my life.

Wednesday 17 June 2015

Wednesday Hodgepodge 17/6/15

Wednesday's Hodgepodge is brought to us courtesy of Joyce at 

Pop over there to see other posts and if you want to join in add your blog post to the Linky List at the end of Joyce's post.

Have fun!

1. June is National Great Outdoors Month. Have you spent any time appreciating the great outdoors this month? If so where, and if not do you have any plans to enjoy the great outdoors before the calendar turns?  
I’m lucky to face onto a large open space (Wanstead Flats) and I’ve been trying to get out walking on it as much as possible.  I’ve even dragged hubby out on several evenings although one of did have the promise of a pub at the end of the walk!  There’s also a facebook link to someone who has taken some amazing photos of the wildlife on the flats, lots of flowers but also some great close-ups of crickets, butterflies and other insects.

2. What's a current hot button issue for you?  
Political shenanigans.  We elect these people to public office to do their duty, serve their constituents etc.  They could at least try and be respectable people.

3. What's a food or treat that 'disappears like hotcakes' in your house?  
Chocolate coated biscuits.  I shop and we have a tin full and then suddenly the tin is empty!  Although of course most have them have been eaten by me which is why I’m not buying as many now we have an empty nest.  When my eldest son was at home it would have been mini pork pies – we always had some in the fridge, well until he’d raided them!

4. How hot is too hot?   
That depends.  Where I used to work my office got the sun most of the day so on a warm sunny day it was like working in a sauna and of course very uncomfortable even if the temperature wasn’t actually that high.  So anything above 20⁰ could be too warm if it was sunny.  If I’m able to just relax and enjoy the sun I can cope with it being hotter than that but once you get into the high 20s I can’t cope with it.  I’m like Goldilocks – I don’t like it too hot, I don’t like it too cold, it has to be just right.

5. Do you have an artistic outlook on life? What does that mean to you?   
NO, I wish I did but I’m not particularly artistic at all.  I don’t draw, I enjoy listening to music but am hopeless at quoting composers or artists when it comes to song titles etc.  I do enjoy crafts but I’m not a designer.  In my defence I’m good at maths and have a logical outlook coated with a good dollop of common sense.

6. What's one question you'd like to ask your father, or one you wish you could ask your father?  
I’d like to ask him about his early childhood and his army experiences.  I was only 22 when he died but these were things we’d never really discussed.  Although I’m not sure he would have discussed everything he’d seen – he was evacuated from Dunkirk during WW2 and never talked about it, even to my Mum.

7. Something you learned from your father? 
How to hang wallpaper.  Not a skill I’ve put to a great deal of use recently but it’s been useful in the past.

8.  Insert your own random thought here.  
Pass your life experiences and history on to your children.  It’s important.