Friday, 30 December 2011

What's Rocking My World Friday (and Christmas Part 2)

Before my list of gratefuls ,as promised, part 2 of my Christmas.....








Lots of wonderful presents and good food and silly games on the Wii...
We didn't have Turkey this year as I found a recipe on Pinterest for Cranberry Glazed Ham......very, very yummy.
And it was the only day I had to cook!!! Out for pizza on Boxing Day and then an Indian meal on Tuesday...our now traditional meal out with the boy before he goes back to Uni.




Santa Max looking not very happy......oh, the indignity of it!! Silly hat!


The boy went back to Bristol on Weds and I went to Stoke Mandeville Hospital..twice. Consultation in the morning and then biopsy in the afternoon - it was pure chance that they had a cancellation that day  - the biopsy wasn't that urgent (fingers crossed). That is why I have stitches in my tongue..sorry Gina, I wish it was 'cos I'd had my tongue pierced! lol Follow up appt. in three weeks...during which time I'll no doubt frighten myself by researching on the internet etc. etc. I may also lose some weight as eating/drinking is painful and I'm on the warm salt water diet for 7 days...bleugh!


But enough of the doom and gloom..... we have 2012 to look forward to..January is already busy with hospital/GP/blood test appointments for both DH and me.....and now I have a mammogram appt. too......yay!! And I still reckon a man designed that machine. :(




Gratefuls for 2011:


Family; friends (esp. my online/crafting ones); Kindle; good books; authors who are accessible and friendly on Facebook; Pinterest for new recipes (as I do get bored making the same things over and over); Man Utd for being Champions again; John Bishop for making me laugh; BBC1 for Sherlock and  Zen;BBC4 for Spiral 3 and Montalbano; Sky Living for Bones and FX for NCIS; the England Cricket team for regaining the Ashes in Australia and for sending me a Christmas card.. :) and finally Max for being my constant (in both senses of the word) companion.


All that's left is to wish you all a very Happy New Year..will see you Rocking in 2012.
Hugs xx

Thursday, 29 December 2011

So that was Christmas...part 1 (Secret Santas and Drunken Reindeer)

Greetings fellow bloggers! 
Hope you all had a great Christmas and are looking forward to 2012.....let's face it, it can't be worse than 2011...can it?!


Apologies for my absence from blogging but Christmas did not go as planned.
I did not go away but stayed home with DH and the boy.


The boy ventured into the attic to retrieve the tree (and decorations) so the house did look fairly festive.
DH put the lights on the tree and was responsible for the "fairy" on top....
..a drunken reindeer! This is actually one of Max's toys...:)
Well, it's different!!


I was naughty and opened my Secret Santa parcel long before the 25th...but I did think I'd be away...so I was allowed!




This was the lovely decorated box that my Santa (aka Virginia!) sent.



First I found this wonderful scarf......wonder how she knew I like purple?


Then a ready prepared Journal with a tin of prompts..I'll be starting on Jan 1st!


Then some handmade goodies....wonderful!!


And finally...some yummy stash in the form of stamps, rub-ons candi....oh wow! 
Virginia you thoroughly spoiled me - it was such fun to open and you really know me well...thank you, thank you.


Thanks too to Carmen for organising the whole Secret Santa event - you did a brilliant job!!..




I'll be back with part 2 on Friday......the day itself and why I now have stitches in my tongue....

Saturday, 17 December 2011

What's Rocking My World Friday (better late than never..)

I'm back!!! Apologies for my absence but life is still nowhere near normal....I have, however, managed to find some gratefuls this week...


The boy is coming home today...yay!! Earlier than expected too.....probably 'cos  a) he's run out of money (begging phone call received yesterday) and b) his girlfriend is going home today too. Whatever, it'll be lovely to see him and we can watch both footie matches together tomorrow..:) Just as well that I tackled his room earlier in the week....


Friends who have sent me wonderful hand made Christmas cards that have brightened my days. Apologies here for the lack of cards from me..I only managed to make 10 cards so that's all that were sent (now I know why Virginia made hers in Jan/Feb - sensible girl).


Other friends who let us join their Pub Quiz team on Thursday....it was a really relaxing night out and such fun....no, we didn't win (came 4th I think) but it was good to exercise "the little grey cells".


I'm still not feeling the Christmas spirit but have managed to do most of my wrapping and only have last minute pressies to buy and I can't get them until I'm in the NE.


David has started his rehab - he has 10 sessions in a gym under supervision. He came back from the first session very energised and took me off to Bicester Village to buy a dress for Christmas - totally unexpected.
This week's session didn't go quite as well due to blood pressure problems. The problem in his case is low blood pressure so his GP had to tweak his meds yesterday. Hopefully this will get rid of the dizzy/feeling light headed spells.


Another grateful....the low fat/low cholesterol diet....whilst challenging (in the sense of making it tasty and not too bland) we are both losing weight. So is Max.....D's answer to cigarette craving is to drag Max out for a walk....I haven't heard any complaints from Max!


The Wii has been "rescued" from the boy's room and is now up and running downstairs....so I'll have no excuse after Christmas to not try Zumba....oh, joy!


Tonight is the Strictly final......any of the three couples could win....but I have a liking for Harry (drummer with McFly)...fingers crossed.


Next week's post will come from a hotel room in the NE...weather permitting. I've been stockpiling books on my Kindle (and two more are pre-ordered for 23rd) so am looking forward to just chilling.....and to seeing my brother and his family.


Off to link to Virginia's blog...

Sunday, 27 November 2011

What's Rocking My World Friday...on Sunday

Sorry for the late arrival of this post but on Friday I just couldn't summon up even a shred of positivity.


Things are (like the weather) a bit brighter today.


First grateful is my SIL Judy (David's sister) who not only took him to his hospital check up on Thursday but has also collected D and Max today for an outing. It will do both of them good and I have some alone time..I had big plans for the "h" word then decided against.....I tackled the "i" word yesterday, which is more than enough for one weekend.


Mother nature is my next grateful. As I'm now banned from smoking in the house (D hasn't smoked for two weeks now - he's finding it difficult but is persevering) I had my coffee outside this morning and watched the seagulls and red kites gliding on the thermals. The red kites I was expecting but as we're about as far from the sea as you can get in the UK the gulls were a surprise. Beautiful sight anyway.


Amazon is my next one for excellent service. I ordered the boy's Christmas presents (from his wish list) last night at about 9 p.m. This morning I had an email telling me they'd been sent off and they'll be here tomorrow. Sorted! Now I just have to finish my wish list....


Royal Mail delivered this week too - I sent my Secret Santa parcel off on Friday and it arrived yesterday. I'm just hoping the other four parcels I sent arrive too. They also delivered parcels to me...crafty parcels at that!! The RAKs I won on WeScrap and Janet's blog. Wonderful goodies that I've a made inroads to - I've managed all of one Christmas card this week. :(


Friends are my final grateful for their emails and phone calls checking up on us.

Friday, 18 November 2011

What's Rocking My World Friday

OK, Friday again and time to list my gratefuls at the end of a strange week..


Firstly I'm enormously grateful to the NHS....in particular the South Central Ambulance service and the staff of the Oxford Heart Centre (based at the JR hospital in Oxford).
They, literally, saved DH's life last Sunday when he had a heart attack.
He's home now with the right artery unblocked and with a stent in place to keep it that way.
You hear so many bad things about the NHS (and we've experienced them too) but in an emergency they ROCK!


Next up is the boy who came home on Tuesday to see his Dad and to help me.
It's been lovely having him for company...watching the football, working our way through the Twilight films (at his girlfriend's suggestion - think she must want him to take her to see "Breaking Dawn") and  sharing housework etc.


Friends have helped too...by offering lifts, texting (even if I didn't recognise their  # - sorry Jo!!), phoning to chat, emailing ...generally just keeping me connected to the world....bringing books for DH to read (he's so not used to sitting around and resting) and healthy treats.


I'm waiting for Sainsbury's to deliver as, apart from walking Max and hospital visits, I haven't left the house this week.


I've tried to craft but ended up binning my efforts....so not in the right frame of mind.


As yet, we don't know how long DH will be off work. We do know he's not allowed to drive for a week.


I'll update when I have more news.


And finally...people have said I must have panicked when DH was having the attack...
I didn't panic....'cos I didn't realise what was happening and neither did he.. 
Just got on and made the phone call.....

Wednesday, 16 November 2011

Wednesday Update

A big thank you to all of you who have been in touch since Sunday.


For those of you who haven't seen my FB status...David had a heart attack on Sunday and has been in the JR Hospital in Oxford.


It was sudden and frightening but we were lucky that help arrived within 5 - 10 minutes of me making the emergency call. We didn't realise what it was (he had no pain) but knew it was serious. They call it a "silent" heart attack.


The blocked artery has been cleared and a stent inserted. He's looking so much better, albeit very weak and is due home today. He'll be off work for about a month and can't drive for a week at least.


Obviously some lifestyle changes are imminent too!


The boy came home yesterday to help out for a few days. It's lovely to see him just wish it was a nicer reason for his visit.


Max has been very subdued and bewildered at being left alone for longer periods than normal.


I'll keep you all updated as and when we have more news.

Sunday, 13 November 2011

What's Rocking My World Friday on Sunday

In memory of  Uncle John, the Uncle I never met.
He was killed in North Africa at the age of 19.
We don't know where he's buried but his name is on a memorial in Libya.


My first grateful of the week is him, and the many others like him who have given their lives for our freedom. 


Friends who have been keeping an eye on me by phone and email.


Family who have also kept an eye on me and have tried to help by issuing invites to stay.


The calming effect of crafting..this week I've been making Christmas tags and getting my fingers inky and messy and prompted this question:
Why do Glossy Accents become black when they dry on your fingers?


The pleasure of baking. I made the Black Magic Cake that I found on Pinterest....it really is a contender for "best chocolate cake ever". Thanks to my guinea pigs..DH and Pat's DH and son. :)


A Maze of Memories for Scrap Club where I did this LO last Saturday:




Things to look forward to....especially Christmas in the NE....train and hotel booked. :)


The boy - for understanding why I'll be in the NE for Christmas and not with him...first one without him which makes me sad but it was going to happen one day.


That's it for this week, which has been another week of very mixed emotions and intense discussion.


Off to link up to Virginia's blog.

Friday, 4 November 2011

What's Rocking Your World Friday


OK....another Friday has rolled around and it's time to dredge for gratefuls in what has been a very rocky week.


First is family.....I had a brilliant weekend adventure in the NE....the party was a hoot, despite me being used as a guinea-pig for the punch*.
They were all waiting to see what happened to me before anyone else would drink it....well, I was still standing when we left at 10:15 and I even managed a couple of brandies in the hotel bar where my evening continued with lots of laughter, before a rather lovely end to the night.


Photo of all the mad costumes - this is the clean version...the light sabre was in a rather rude position in the next version!


Princess Leia's costume was finished off with a pair of army boots - very fetching!! Mark has just arrived back from 6.5 months in Afghanistan - he's a navy medic.


*The punch...I only found out late in the evening that it was pure alcohol..no lemonade or soda or anything resembling a soft drink.  Funnily, I didn't have a hangover ....it's the mixers what cause the problems!! lol


Friends are next..from the one I met for coffee in London on my way home to those who have emailed and left supportive messages on FB.


Lots of thinking was done over the course of the weekend and decisions were reached.


Sadly, DH and I are separating after 30 years. No final decision on divorce has been reached and for the foreseeable future we'll still be in the same house (for financial reasons).


Obviously, this past week has had painful moments and lots of discussions.
We've  spoken to the boy and he's taken it reasonably well, although he's concerned for both of us.


I'm sad but relieved at the same time...and trying to look forward.

Sunday, 30 October 2011

The Devil Mistress

The Devil Mistress makes her first appearance alongside Dracula (aka my little brother).


Dracula and the wicked stepmother (aka  my SIL)






This was before the party......
Please ignore any photos that may surface on Facebook........I didn't realise the punch was totally alcoholic (i.e. no lemonade or anything soft) ....


More photos to follow (when my bro emails them to me).


I think it's safe to say that a good time was had by all. :)

Saturday, 29 October 2011

What's Rocking My World Friday...it is still just Friday..

This post comes to you courtesy (well, not really...I've had to pay for Internet access) of a Premier Inn in the NE of England...they won't let me reveal the exact location for security reasons...


Before I start my list we have a winner of my birthday giveaway!!! My random number generator (aka Sir or He who must be obeyed...yes, he nabbed that before I could) chose 7...so congrats to Carole...you'll be getting a parcel in the post next week :).


And talking of parcels.....Max apparently received a parcel today..much to the bemusement of DH. Having read Penny's blog today I think I know who it's from - thank you Joanna!! Max sends lots of doggy licks...not only to your hands and face but also your ears (the ear licks are reserved for very special people). The mouth licks are reserved for me..usually at 6 in the morning..bleugh!


So, onto my gratefuls...
Old friends are first. I was taken out for a meal tonight by family friends that I hadn't seen for about three years as Doris has been battling leukaemia and wasn't well enough to make Dad's funeral. Good food, good company and lots of chat....perfect!


Parcels...for me this time! Two prizes arrived on Wednesday...my kit  from WeScrap in USA and the art journalling DVD from Scrap 365 (this was pretty good as I only emailed them my address late on Mon evening). Haven't had time to do more than look at them yet.






Next are two of my favourite shops - Lush and Marks & Spencer who provided goodies for me to buy on Tuesday in Windsor. This winter I shall be wearing mainly purple...from top to toe and (after today) from the skin outwards. :)


I must mention Strictly...this year I wasn't going to get sucked in especially as  I was out at a crop the night of the first show....but....I succumbed and watched the second show..I was absolutely blown away by Jason Donovan. His performance was amazing for a first dance. Apparently he spent all day Saturday practising and deserved to win..at least that's what ....shameless name dropping alert here......Brendan (Cole) said when I bumped into him in Waitrose  on the Sunday.
Anyway, the show is keeping me amused on Saturday and Sunday evenings.


Short break there whilst I amused the reception staff - went out for a last cigarette wearing my pj's (black flowery satin) and raincoat..this is as nothing to what they'll see tomorrow night when the Devil Mistress arrives back from the party..esp. since I found some earrings to complete the outfit...they're a bit OTT even for me.


Today I went to Dad's house for the first time since it was emptied -a really weird feeling seeing the rooms like that.


And now some confessions:
- I had to buy a birthday card for my nephew today...I know I'll be drummed out of the crafters' union but I totally did not have time to make one (ie. I forgot!!)


- I upgraded my phone on Tuesday and today I had to go into a phone shop to ask how to answer calls on it. I've been having to ring people back as I couldn't work out how to do it. How sad is that?! Apparently I have to "swipe" not "stab". And, yes, I had read the instruction book but answering calls wasn't mentioned.


I'm off now to link this to Virginia's post.


Look out for photos on Sunday. :)

Tuesday, 25 October 2011

Birthday Giveaway..a photo heavy post.

Happy Birthday to ...ME!!


Yes, I'm 21..again. :)


Before I give details of the giveaway, I want to share some photos:


Anniversary/Birthday flowers..from DH


My cake..courtesy of DH and Waitrose....it's actually a very pale blue not white.


Present from Pat (before opening)...full of scrappy goodies, including a stylish magnifying glass on a chain.


Giorgio Bear from my brother and SIL.


Yes, I have a "thing" for soft toys...I even have my own Ewok (Star Wars).


Max helped me open my presents...the floor is now covered in scraps of paper that he had great fun ripping apart.


We went out for a meal last night..Indian. It was lovely and I ventured out of my comfort zone to try new dishes...Garlic Lamb....yummy!


If the weather holds we're off to Windsor for the day......yes, DH is taking me shopping!! Unheard of as he loathes shopping. M&S and Lush are where I'm aiming for..I have vouchers to spend!


And now for the giveaway.....


To go into a draw to win these goodies simply leave a comment on this post before Friday 28th. 
A random number generator will decide the winner....
As I'm away over the weekend* I'll post the parcel next week.


* The hotel is supposed to have WiFi so I'm hoping to be able to get online.
I also know  a bar where they have free WiFi..and onion rings. :)

And finally....thanks to Joanna who emailed last night to let me know that I'd won an art journalling DVD from Scrap 365 (new magazine) on Facebook...yay!!! 
DH doesn't understand why you'd need a DVD for that.....

Monday, 24 October 2011

Celebration Time!!

Yes...it's time to celebrate...


Today DH and I have been married for 30 years..
Which leads me to two thoughts...


Where are my pearls?
I'd have got less for murder...lol!


This is my card to him.


The celebration has been somewhat tempered by...me feeling like death warmed up since I had my flu jab on Saturday and the appalling events of Sunday afternoon....


I am seriously traumatised...to lose 1 - 6 is bad enough (and it's the worst defeat in my 40 + years of supporting) but to lose to City.....I was too numb to cry. Max did however get an extra long walk...he was happy.


A little good news today..I won another book for my Kindle..yay! Random number generators seem to like me at the moment. :)


So..in that spirit, I'll be back tomorrow (my birthday) with a giveaway...

Friday, 21 October 2011

What's Rocking My World Friday - normal(ish) service has been resumed


My first grateful of the week has to be ...my online friends.
Thank you so much to all of you who emailed me, texted me, left supportive messages on my blog or messaged me on other forums - I am so lucky to have you in my life.
Your support, advice, offers of help.....well, they made me cry, but in a good way. Thank you so much. I love you all.


Next up is the boy. He's taken everything in his stride, despite being somewhat bemused (and busy with his dissertation).  


Max has played his part too...by taking me for long, convoluted walks (and yes, it is him taking me for walks, as anyone who has met us knows!) . We've made some new doggy friends this week including a beautiful, lively 4 month old called Anya. She's a breed I'd never heard of let alone seen - a Hamilton Hound. Swedish apparently and numbered only in their hundreds in the UK. Look out for her at Crufts.....I'd never spoken to a dog owner who shows at Crufts before..eek!


WeScrap deserves a mention for cheering me up too. I've managed to stay on track with the Fall contest (I really would love to win the Vagabond machine but enjoy the peace and quiet that my scrapping brings) and found out on Thursday that I'd won the September challenges....yay! Yummy new kit on its' way to me as I type. :)


Pinterest has kept me busy and I made the Cinnamon Roll Cake this week. Very nice it was too..but a little on the large side for two people...I'll halve the recipe in future.  Next up is "Black Magic Cake".....allegedly (yes, "Have I got News for You" is back!!) the best chocolate cake ever.....I'll report back.


Amazon is next for continuing their 70% off jewellery sale....think I've sorted almost all the "female" presents on my list. :)




Bookstrand for keeping me supplied with books for my Kindle..


Bestest news of all...I'm going away...on my own...to a hotel next weekend. I'm off up to the NE to visit family and to attend a surprise Halloween party.
The costume has been sorted and is in the post.
What fun (?) I had finding it. Lots and lots to choose from (even Amazon sells them).
Two problems emerged....1.since full length costumes touched the floor on the models.....they'd swamp me. 2. the costumes that had straps (I'm always afraid strapless will lead to a "wardrobe malfunction") were all very short..so  that discounted the....Victorian Vampire, Fallen Angel (complete with wings and black halo!), Bride of Dracula....
I'm going as a Red Devil....slinky red dress, red hold ups, horns and a trident that is also a crop (?)
Note here for Carmen...I did toy with the idea of Miss Whiplash but decided my height and curves didn't quite match the vinyl catsuit. :)


Carmen is organising  Secret Santa for us bloggers.....I'm stalking my victim already!


I'm still planning on doing NaNoWriMo next month. I'm completing my profile and just need to put in details of what I'm writing. Once Nov. 1st is here there'll be a link to my page on the site and those who want to (yes, there are people mad enough) will be able to read my efforts.


An update. Lots of talking (that should have been done years ago) has taken place and things have settled somewhat. Changes may still take place but not without calm reflection (next weekend will provide time for that).
Monday is our 30th wedding anniversary and Tuesday is my 21st (and a bit, just don't ask how big the bit is!lol) birthday so we have things to look forward to.


Finally, thanks to the friend who "rescued" me when this all kicked off. I'll thank you properly when we next meet. :)

Thursday, 13 October 2011

What's Rocking My World Friday..on Thursday

Friday has been cancelled due to the after effects of some self-destructive behaviour on my part.
I walked out on Tuesday evening with the most bizarre list of personal belongings and although back again now the future is very much in the balance.
I'll be emailing some of you to update you.

Monday, 10 October 2011

Return of the Mojo and NaNoWriMo

Yes, I really have done some crafting..... so thought I'd share.


First, a selection of cards for the crop on WeScrap...and for those who think I've gone over to the dark side, two of them are actually birthday cards:)






Next is a LO for the Fall Contest on WeScrap ( the one where you can win a Vagabond machine). We had to choose a LO in the gallery and do a sketchlift.




Here I am at Alexandra Palace. Important for two reasons..to remember the day and to show that I do in fact have legs and do occasionally wear girly clothes. :)
I used a Creative Imaginations kit bought ages ago from QVC - perfect colours I thought.


Finally, we have an altered mirror that I did last night. Bought at Ally Pally along with the Decopatch papers and glue. It's destined for s'one's Christmas stocking. :)


And ,yes, that is my torso in the mirror..still in my pj's.


How has my first non-smoking day gone? Weeeeeelllll, it started badly, when I sat down with my coffee and automatically lit up...oops! This did not go down well with the person assigned as support and encouragement (remember we're using the "stick" method as opposed to the "carrot"). A further lapse (due to an emotional moment) has seen my punishment doubled. :(


Add to that the fact that I've been eating industrial amounts of chocolate, I'm almost out of wine and have cleared the drinks cabinet so well that I'm down to the whiskies (bleugh) and Tia Maria ...not a good day.
I'm really going to have to watch my weight - I can't afford yet more new undies and clothes..going naked ,whilst comfortable, isn't really an option - I don't think Thame High Street is ready for that..damn, I don't think our street is ready for that!


I learnt via Facebook that I'm going to be a great-aunt again next year courtesy of my nephew (who I've threatened to disinherit if he doesn't drop the "great"). Since his partner has two boys from her marriage and he has a boy and girl from his last relationship..that will make 5. Wondering what the odds are on it being a girl? 
DH's niece is also expecting next year for the first time. My SIL is so looking forward to being a Grandma...why??? I've told DS I'm much too young.




And finally...NaNoWriMo.....what is it you ask?


November is write a novel month (or at least 50,000 words of a novel) and I've signed up to do it.
It's something I've wanted to do for a while so when I saw it advertised on breakfast TV (I knew getting up early was dangerous) I decided to go for it.
Now I've just got to decide what sort of book to write...


Diary of A Middle Aged Housewife aged "old enough to know better"...based on my blog?
Erotic romance? In which case what's the British equivalent of cowboys?
Murder and mayhem?
Decisions,decisions...

Sunday, 9 October 2011

Interview With.....Myself!!


 Amy wants us all to interview ourselves although I'm not quite sure why..


Carmen  answered all the questions so I thought I'd better follow suit....in case she comes up with another new name for me....the latest is Sexy Susie Sue...I think that's an improvement on her last two for me...



1.what is your name and stuff? and any other good information. like bank account details.
My name is Susan. My middle name is Jane. I only ever get called Susan when I'm in trouble...
Most people call me Sue (whether I want them to or not) but I also answer to Susie, SusieJ, mother, Miss, Nick's Mum (when shouted in the High Street).
I do not answer to "deaf bitch" under any circumstances as one year 8 pupil found to her cost. :)



2. what is super hot about you?   don't you Dare skip this one.  answer it.
My sense of humour, my sarcasm (polished to a high degree) and my all round general loveliness. I am, however, under no illusions that others can see my hotness. :)

3.  don't lie or cheat: what is under your couch right now?
Probably crumbs.... not much room for anything else..though there could be the odd coin or pen

4.  when was the last time you shaved your legs?
Yesterday morning...
I'm not answering for other body parts on the grounds it might incriminate me.

5.  what did you have for breakfast?
Two cups of strong black coffee , two madeleines and my usual round of vitamins and other assorted goodies. :( 
We'd run out of bananas, my usual breakfast.

6. if you could choose a new name, what would you name yourself?
She who must be obeyed


7.  have you ever had plastic surgery?
No and I never will as I'm growing old disgracefully

8. are you afraid of the dark?
No, spiders, frogs, birds in enclosed spaces yes, but the dark, no

9. are you a hermit?
okay.  Amy checked wikipedia and if this is right:
 "In modern colloquial usage, the term "hermit" is sometimes used for anyone living a life apart from the rest of society, or who simply does not participate in social events as much as is common, regardless of their motivation in doing so."
Then i might be a little bit.
but not too much.

10.  why do you blog?
To communicate, to share, to spread joy and laughter...
Why should my family be the only ones to suffer? lol


The End.

Friday, 7 October 2011

What's Rocking My World Friday (the censored version)

Great..it's Friday again..oh, joy,...one week nearer to (dare I say it?)..Christmas. 


Speaking of which..two links for you.
My first gratefuls of the week are June at Dezinaworld who has branched out from her fabulous vintage downloads into goody bags...perfect crafty stocking fillers.
And Carmen fellow crafter,reader and wine drinker who is organising a Secret Santa swap for her regular followers - I'm in!


Next is the blog "When One is Not Enough" which makes fascinating reading and where I won a book for my Kindle this week - a free book ...yay!


And still on all things internet, my cyber friends who I'm getting to know better and better and some of whom I'm meeting in real life. I met one this week (this is the friend who distracts me on a Wednesday, although usually via email/text) and the meeting was everything and more that I could have wished for. Hopefully I'll be meeting at least two more (Penny and Joanna!) in the next couple of weeks. Thanks  to Virginia, Queen of the Rockettes, who emailed the link for her gorgeous mini-book. Thanks too to Joanna who "suggested" the following for my fancy dress (I'm still working on getting to that party)..."a virgin for a vampire"....interesting on so many levels...I did think of going as Jacob from Twilight but there might be a problem with me taking my shirt off..


Which leads neatly into my next grateful...which is... that even at my age I'm able to learn new skills, to have new experiences and to make new friends. I don't think I need say any more on that.


Pinterest is next as this was the week that I finally made something rather than just pinning. I made the "buttermilk-blueberry breakfast cake" and it was  delicious..sadly, I had to eat most of it myself as apparently "there were too many blueberries in it"..is it possible to have too many blueberries??


Sky Movies for showing "New Moon"  again yesterday afternoon - it saw me through the "i" word. 


Haven't heard from the boy this week..well not since he was on his way to the pub to watch the Arsenal match on Sunday..oh, dear...


I've tormented the other Arsenal supporter in the house (Max is a Man Utd fan, despite what the others say!!) with my Man Utd hoody - well he won't let me put the heating on. :(


Things learned this week:
1. Be careful what you wish for...last week I complained about the heat...I didn't mean for it get this cold. Still, it means I can swap summer pj's for my winter ones....I'm particularly fond of the red ones with reindeers. :) And I can dig out the fluffy bed socks - my feet are always cold. Such a glamorous look..


2. Ironing is bad for your health.
I could hardly walk by yesterday evening..standing and ironing was not a good idea esp. after unaccustomed exercise the evening before.


3. It is a bad idea to make appointments for Weds. morning even if it is to see your GP.
That would probably have been OK had I been able to come straight home, but I'd sold a book on Amazon so had to go into town to post it. Extreme nausea and dizziness meant a taxi home (money I could have used for stash!).
I have to go for my flu jab tomorrow at the special clinic. :(


Next week is give up smoking (again) week.
The "it's for the good of your health" approach and the "carrot" approach haven't worked....so this time it's the "stick" approach..
I'll let you know how I get on.


A final word at the start of what is going to be an emotional weekend.
I'm still grateful for the things I was grateful for this time last year.
It's the first anniversary on my Dad's death and I still miss him so much...he was the one who introduced me to cricket (from being a toddler) and football. From him I also got my love of crosswords and quizzes and he was the one who taught me to read.
Love you Dad xx

Tuesday, 4 October 2011

WeScrap Autumn Challenge...just look at the prize!!

Yes, this is indeed the first prize in a month long challenge.


Check out http://www.wescrap.com/

You'll meet an amazing group of women (well, I'm a member aren't I? lol) - we have fun, do lots of creating, swap tips and techniques and have monthly challenges and weekly sketches.


If you do decide to join and take part in the challenge please mention my name - we'll both get extra entries to the draw for the big prize - can't be bad!!

Saturday, 1 October 2011

What's Rocking My World Friday (and yes, I do know it's Saturday)

Apologies for the late posting but, as I spent yesterday in a fog of pain killers and a miasma of Deep Heat (blimey, it does what it says on the tin - it's hot!and it stings!and it smells!), had I posted yesterday it probably wouldn't have made much sense.
I've been having problems with my right knee and lower leg, so haven't been sleeping much. As I wanted to go out last night, drastic action was called for...a day spent reclining and reading and resting...


So, on to the gratefuls for this week.


#1 has to be Amazon who replaced my poorly Kindle.
The on/off button had stopped working (probably from overuse, I hear you say..you may well be right) so I emailed them on Tuesday morning. Within half an hour they were on the phone to me and my replacement was in my hot little hands by Weds. lunchtime. That is what I call excellent customer service. All the books from them that I'd archived were immediately available (a bit of a shame as I'd planned a cull lol!) all I had to do was download the others plus books from other sites.
The poorly Kindle was collected yesterday, free of charge, unlike D's tax form on which postage had to be paid. :(
They also deserve a mention for having a 70% off jewellery sale this week. I have started my Christmas shopping..earrings are the gift this year..now to decide what to get for the women on my list. :)


#2 is A Maze of Memories for a wonderful crop evening yesterday. I managed a double LO and a single. Christina had provided the usual kit with the added bonus of a sketch...being me I used the sketch for one LO and the kit for another (I think the idea was to use them together but Christina knows me and Pat well - we live to deviate). 
And, because the weather is totally unseasonal (more of that later) our usual red/white wine was replaced with Pimms...yummy and very healthy with all the fruit...it must have counted as one of my 5-a-day. :)


Here are the LOs plus  one I made earlier (always wanted to say that!!). All are for the Sept. challenges on WeScrap:





I know I left it a bit late to submit them but cut off time was midnight ECT.
Not being able to work out what time that is here I was up until 01:30

#3 is friends and family.
The boy kept me occupied on Tuesday and Weds. evenings...texting him the scores from the Champions League matches.....lectures have started again and he's busy.....it was very thoughtful of him to keep me busy too. :)


Pat for taking me to the crop last night..I'm going to miss her as she's off to the USA on Weds....Virginia and thereabouts this time...next year it's Canada. She will of course be on the lookout for scrapbooking shops.


Carmen for sending me her review copy of "Painted Pages"...awesome book...and a surprise in the post...I couldn't remember ordering anything and was having a mild panic at my "loss of memory". :( Thanks Carmen..once my cards are out of the way I'm going to experiment.


Other friends for their emails,texts and phone calls which have kept me occupied and away from trouble (they wish!). :)


My nephew's partner/girlfriend/fiance (those who follow them on FB will know their status changes on a daily basis - two weeks ago they'd split up) for inviting us to a Halloween Fancy Dress party in Durham to celebrate his 30th b'day. I keep forgetting that he was born a week after D & I got married.
Still working on getting there as someone doesn't want to drive that far and doesn't seem keen to let me go on my own. I don't know why as I'm perfectly well behaved (just forget the karaoke incident in 2008 and the asking of two heterosexual men if they were "partners" - oops!):( My little brother would look after me I'm sure.


#4 is WeScrap for organising a two day card crop in honour of World Cardmaking Day which is today.
The first four challenges are posted and by the end of the afternoon I should have 1 b'day card and 7 Christmas cards made.


So that's how I'm going to spend today - TV with sound off tuned to Gillette Soccer Saturday, Radio 5 Live on (as long as it's our match) and making some cards.


Questions of the week:
What is the right size glass for Rose wine?
My everyday glasses don't suit - the white wine are on the small side and the red wine are enormous, seriously, you only get three glasses from a bottle.
Carmen and I are determined to help Virginia achieve her dream of a Christmas tree made from empty wine bottles..as seen on Pinterest.


What is with this weather?
Total agreement with Carmen here..we should be back in jeans and sweaters, not being forced to wear girly skirts and things.


Book of the week (as recommended by the Sunday Times):
"A Discovery of Witches" by Deborah Harkness


Daemons,vampires,witches and set in Oxford (at least that's where it starts). I have it on my Kindle (£4.99)but it's also available in paperback (for £3 more). I'm really enjoying it.


Almost kick-off time so I'm going to make a coffee and get myself settled at my table...when I've found my Christmas stash..

Monday, 26 September 2011

A Grand Day Out (and I'm no longer a virgin)

Yesterday (Sunday) was  a much anticipated  day out...the day of the Stamp and Craft Show @ Ally Pally.


Pat drove us up to London  (well, she has a car and I don't and although I can drive, I don't).


We stopped at IKEA on the N Circular and I am no longer an IKEA virgin.
That place is massive (as in size and not the other meaning) and busy..I think  Dante had  just visited when he wrote his "Inferno".


I did buy some odds and ends..


all of which are destined to become Christmas presents (though I may keep one of the notebooks for myself). I have a cunning plan for the frames, thanks to Pinterest.


The show itself was worth a visit..much nicer than the NEC..busy but not too crowded and the crafty people had time to chat.
Purchases were of course made:
Papers by Webster's Pages,lots of TH like embellishments (but not as expensive) and a Zentangle book - I'm hoping to improve my doodling skills or just have a change from Sudoku. :)


Card supplies, Christmas ribbon (like I really needed any more) and a mirror that is going to be covered using Decopatch and will end up under someone's Christmas tree.


Photos were taken by Pat but I won't get my copies until Friday. I plan on doing a LO as yesterday was noteworthy in that a) I wore a dress b) you could see my legs c) I elicited a "You look nice.." from D. Talk about "steps back in amazement.."


I'd had enough well before Pat but managed to find activities to keep me out of mischief...
One of them was watching the people/choirs arriving for the filming of "Songs of Praise". Judging by some of the party hats being carried it may well have been the Christmas episode (but I could be wrong).


We deliberately took the wrong turn that we found on our last visit and made it home in just over an hour..if only we could remember it  on the way there as it cuts out lots of the fiddly parts of the journey.


Back home normal service was resumed- back in jeans and my Man Utd hoodie to walk Max.


I nearly came a cropper while walking him. I've always sort of looked down on people who walk their dogs while texting or chatting on their mobiles as not paying enough attention to their pets.
Well, guess what? I was texting last night (it was a fascinating conversation and we both had plans so couldn't text /talk later) and almost got hit in the face by a rogue football - I looked up at the last minute and managed to avoid it. Max came rushing over (he was off lead) and we (the boy who kicked the ball, his father and I) all thought it was to check up on me. No, it was to chase the football. That puts me in my place.


I'd been planning to watch the rerun of the Singapore GP but got sidetracked by the T20 cricket.....so wish I hadn't...I'm not used to England losing cricket matches...
Only two positives in the game for me:
Borthwick had the best bowling average, he took his first wicket in an England shirt, pulled off a great catch and had second highest batting total.
Stokes made the most runs.
These two are both Durham youngsters and as the signs say when you enter the county, "Durham A First Class County". Others say "Land of the Prince Bishops". Seeing those signs on the A1M means I'm almost home.


If you've made it this far you deserve a coffee (or s'thing stronger).
Hugs xx