Saturday 26 November 2022

Friday's Fave Five - 25/11/22

Well I'm still going for an autumn look here as there are still plenty of leaves around.  Our host Susanne is already looking Christmassy.

Check out her blog here for more info and participants.

This week I'm thankful for:

1)  Family time - last weekend we celebrated Ella's birthday with all 6 grandchildren at her party.  It was held at a centre called "Role to Play" and there were lots of themed areas where the children could dress up plus a seating area for adults and room for the children to sit and eat after playing.  I didn't get a lot of great photos, especially of Ella - had to take a screenshot from the video I took of her blowing out her candles.







2)  More decorating done!  Not by us I hasten to add - our neighbour had a decorating business and although he's now retired his 3 sons have carried on the works.  We had the office and our bedroom painted so all the upstairs rooms are now done.

They also did some touching up in the downstairs bathroom following the installation of the extractor fan.

This will probably be the tidiest this room ever looks!  Need to find a lampshade. 

We haven't put our bedroom straight yet so I'll post pictures of that later.

3)  Thankful that we didn't downsize when we moved - we were able to sleep in one of the spare rooms this week while the decorating was being done and the other room and landing had a lot of stuff in them.

4)  Perseverance - our internet extenders weren't working properly since we had the alarm system changed but on Thursday I managed to figure out reconfiguring them again.  Took a while but got there eventually and now the internet signal is better around the house.  I also had to reconfigure the wireless set up on the printer.  That took even longer but again, with perseverance, I finally got it to work.  I hate giving up on things.

5)  Postal Christmas cards ready to post!  Usually I am much later than this but with the cost of postage being so high I was determined to have them ready so I could use 2nd rather than 1st class post.  With the decorators in I used that as an excuse not to do much housework this week and used the time to get my cards done.

Bonus item:  We're off to our younger son's soon to enjoy a Thanksgiving dinner - our DIL is from Vermont.  Originally they had only invited friends but as a couple had dropped out we got invited to go.

Hope all my American friends enjoyed Thanksgiving and everyone is having a good weekend.

Thursday 24 November 2022

Wednesday Hodgepodge - 23/11/22

It's been a while since I joined in with one of these and I'm a day late but here goes:

1. Have you ever been on a cruise? If so where did you go and how did you like it? If not, do you have any desire to take a cruise someday? 

Yes I've been on a cruise up the coast of Norway which was lovely.  The scenery was beautiful and it was great visiting various towns without having to constantly unpack and repack our cases.  

2. Tell us about your Thanksgiving plans...are you hosting? cooking? eating out? turkey or some other main? is it stuffing or dressing in your house? homemade cranberries or cranberries in a can? are pies on the dessert menu? what kind? what are your 'must have' sides? Tell us one thing you're especially grateful for this year.

No Thanksgiving plans for us here in the UK but I expect our American DIL will have something planned for my son and 2 grandsons.  Unfortunately, as she is a teacher, they cannot make a visit home to her family at this time of year.  We did all manage to get to Vermont in 2018 when Grandson Rory was just a baby and DIL was still on maternity leave.

I'm grateful that this year we're all fit and well and although Covid is still about life has returned to a lot of normality.

3. If someone approaches you and asks for money do you give it to them? Do you drop money 'in a tin cup' that belongs to a person on the street? Do you have a specific charity you support during the holiday season and/or year round?

We support quite a lot of charities year round that includes one that works with the homeless so I'm less likely to put money in a cup on the street although hubby often will.

4. Have you started decorating for Christmas? Is your tree up? Shopping done? Wrapped? 

No, no, no and no!  Although in the UK many people do not start decorating/putting trees up until 1st December at least.  I do have my Christmas cards ready to be written - just need to remember where I put them!

5. Create your own acrostic using the word THANKS. 

Thanksgiving isn't a holiday

Here in the UK

Although the sentiment is appreciated and

Nothing should be taken for granted

Kindness is important

So Happy Thanksgiving to all my US friends

6.  Insert your own random thought here. 

A chaotic week here - 2 bedrooms being decorated so house is upside down and I have an extra day of Grandsitting tomorrow thanks to a teacher training day.  Who said retirement meant an easy life? lol

Oh and the biggest thanks go to Joyce over at "From this side of the pond" for hosting the Hodgepodge each week.  Visit her site to see the regular participants.

Friday 18 November 2022

Friday's Fave Five - 18/11/22

Well once again I've missed a week here so today I was determined to join up with Susanne and others and think about things I'm grateful for during the last week (or two!).  You can find out more over at Living to Tell the Story.

1)  Time away with extended family.  Regular readers may remember me going to Kos in 2019 with 3 of my cousins.  Last week the four of us got together again, but this time with our husbands too and we spent 4 nights in Tenbury Wells which is near Worcester.  We rented a house and had a great time exploring the area and then relaxing back at the house each night, playing games, drinking wine and generally having a good time.

Enjoying our evening meal

L-R Pat, Me, Julie and Jill
Martin (Pat's H) Simon (Jill's H) Nick (my Hubby) and Pete (Julie's H)
Oh and Beanie - Jill and Simon's dog!

Standing on the bridge over the river Teme (the second fastest flowing river in England) which divides Worcestershire from Shropshire .  Pete Nick and I were in Shropshire, Jill, Pat and Martin were in Worcestershire.
We were lucky enough to get an impromptu tour around the pump rooms by one of the council workers located there.
2)  Last Saturday I got my 4th Covid jab.  I felt a bit rough later in the day and my arm was quite sore for a couple of days but glad to be further protected while Covid is still out there.

3)  Granddaughter Ella turned 2!  (Yesterday.)  We collected Nathan from school and then joined Ella and her Mummies for birthday cake.  I didn't get any decent photos with the cake but she's having a party on Saturday so hopefully I'll get some better ones then.

Although she was a bit bemused by it all lol.

4)  Back to the knitting group - we met up on Wednesday evening and it was nice to have some adult conversation after having Grandson Vinny all day.

This is my current WIP
A nice easy pattern that is knitted on 10 stitches.  I started it ages ago but hadn't done much but did quite a bit on Wednesday evening and more since.  

5)  Hubby has recovered well after his minor op and he's now had eye tests and hearing tests done this week.  He needs new hearing aids so hopefully that will improve his hearing. I might have to be careful what I say in future.

Have a good weekend all.

Sunday 6 November 2022

Z - A Challenge 2022

Oops, I seem to have fallen a bit (ok a BIG bit) behind with this challenge so here is a big catch up!

Starting with:

U - Unique to my blog.

Well I think my use of Alice is different although not unique.  (Find out more about Alice here.) 

Over the years I have tried to include different things e.g. for a while I made use of "10 things you didn't know last week" which was a regular post on the BBC website but that was discontinued.  I also tried writing about 5 news items each week and for a while I made Wednesdays into Wendysdays but......the familiar theme here is inconsistency.

I'm not great at sticking with things.  This challenge is another example of that.


T - Ten Year plan

Ha, I often don't have a 10 minute plan let alone a year or ten.  After the last couple of years we've had with the pandemic I'm not sure anyone might bother with a ten year plan, especially with the state of our country's politics and economics.  


I know all about SMART goals.  It was something that was covered when I was doing the School Business Manager's qualification.  In a work environment they can be quite useful.  In my life not so much.  When I was crazy enough to give myself a list of challenges for the year (19 in 2019, 20 in 2020 etc - see above) I tried to make my goals SMART but (hmm supposed to be sticking to Zero excuses in this challenge) the pandemic threw a big spanner in the works and I didn't even set out a list for this year.

R - Recommend

If you're wondering what this is all about I recommend you check out the A-Z site here and the blogs of the organising team.  They put such a lot of hard work into the A-Z challenge every year.

Q - Questions for visitors

Hmm not sure visitors coming to my blogs would expect to get a grilling from me.  Of course it might be useful to find out how they landed here or what they think of my blog.  Maybe I could adapt my comment box to try and address this.

P - Priorities

Well clearly my blog hasn't been a priority lately!  My priority is definitely my family which now includes 6 grandchildren.  We also have a large extended family so keeping up with them is another priority.

O - Open

I think I'm quite an open person and what you see is what you get.

N - Never blog this

That's a tricky prompt.  Of course there are some things I wouldn't include in my blog - graphic images and real life horror stories spring to mind.  Other topics (e.g. politics or religion) can be contentious but I believe in free speech and the right to express our opinions.  

M - Motivating

I am often lacking in motivation.  Sometimes I think I need a good kick up the backside.  I have good and bad spells but battling anxiety can take a lot of energy.  

Phew that's brought me up to date with the prompts from the challenge!

Hopefully I might summon up enough motivation to keep on track from now on but don't hold your breath lol.

Friday 4 November 2022

Friday's Fave Five - 4/11/22

I was feeling a bit sorry for myself last Friday as I was getting over a nasty tummy bug so I didn't get here to post so I have 2 weeks of faves to look back on today.  Thanks to our host Susanne for reminding us every week to find the good things in our week.  You can find other posts here:  Living to Tell the Story

1)  Time with our eldest son and his family.  They arrived the Sunday before last and were here until last Friday.  They were out and about quite a bit but it's always so lovely to have quality time with them all.

2)  A halloween party.  My DIL organised a party for all the cousins while they were here - they do love getting together.  We had it at my house but it involved very little effort on my part and it was lovely to see the Grandkids enjoying themselves so much.

3)  Hubby had his minor surgery at the beginning of last week and his recovery has gone well.  Such a relief to finally get it over and done with as it had been postponed a couple of times due to his fall and then an infection.

4)  Grateful that I've felt better this week and able to get out for a couple of walks.  We're in "Welly" season now though.  We've had lots of rain over the past week or so and the forest is very muddy.  The water level in the river was also the highest I've seen it yesterday.

5)  Grateful that Granddaughter Ella seems to be improving - she had another visit to A & E this week which involved an overnight stay here for Nathan.  Fortunately they didn't keep her in.  Thankful that we live close to them now so we're able to help out.

Have a good weekend all.