Thursday, 31 December 2015

Happy New Year

2015 is nearly over.  Are you celebrating tonight?

I am sat here with the dog snoring next to me.  It is 9pm and H has gone to bed for the second time today.  We hope that he will wake up about 11.30 and will be on his second or third wind and he will join me in a glass of something cold to welcome in 2016.  Otherwise it will be Anni and I cuddling up and Grrrr -ing at the fireworks.  We hate fireworks in this house :-)

2015 has been an ok year for us.  We had hope that a new drug would make his MS more manageable but sadly it did not work for us.  We can not complain, as we have been doing well.

We have not flooded, though the town down the road did.  The main road bridge in the town has an awful big crack down one leg.  I hope that it can be fixed and stay open.  We have been lucky.  Friends in different towns have watched the water rush ever closer, but most have escaped damage.

We have sold our house - though we are not talking about that.  Don't you hate miscommunication :-)
We have bought a bungalow and are raring to get in and get it sorted.

H has applied for ill health retirement.  We are awaiting decisions on this.  It won't help that paperwork has gone missing in the post and then his work shut down for 10 days for Christmas.

So 2016 will be a big year for us.  Leaving work, packing up a house, making another house into a home.  Having a garden for the first time, getting the greenhouse up (it's lived under the back bed for 3 years now) and growing veggies.  I am frantically using up all my nice bath products as the new house only has a shower - Grrrrr.  I am trying to get my Mum to swap her corner bath for a normal bath so I can go up for regular baths.  I could ring from the bus Mum and ask for you to get it running and open a bottle of wine - yes????????

I do not deal well with change. I kind of freeze and see a wall in the way.  Things take me a lot longer to get through.  However, I no longer fear change so if I have to get there a little slower, get there I will.

I have decided that I am going to have a word for 2016.  I am going for CONTENTMENT.  I will find it, I will accept it, I will love it.  I will be content.

Have ordered a new sofa for the new house, am needing to buy an old lady chair for D (why are they soooo expensive (& ugly)?

Now any tips of packing anyone?

I wish you a Happy New Year and may 2016 bring you happiness, laughter and lots of cake.

Sunday, 6 December 2015



Sooooo it's been a while since I last posted.  Even my Mum has been wondering where I have disappeared to!!!

What have I been up to?  Wellllllllll, we put the house on the market, and I had to keep tidying it up and hiding things in cupboards, and then do it again, and again, and again.  Then we sold the house (hooray) but then we didn't have anywhere we wanted to buy.  Arghhhhhhh.

Then we found Grotville and put an offer in and now we have something to buy.  We affectionally call it Grotville as it is pretty unloved.  We do feel that if we show it love, we will love it.  I hope!!

So we leave the house of my dreams, but at 4 storeys high it no longer works for H's MS and I do want a garden, for a dorma bungalow, where H never needs to go upstairs again.  

Oh I do so hope we fall in love with it :-)


Thursday, 22 October 2015

A Weekend Away

Last weekend (not the one that ended yesterday!) saw H and I off for a long weekend in Sidcup.  Now it might not immediately spring to mind when thinking of somewhere to spend a weekend, but there was method in our madness.

Do you remember last November we met these loons, friends, when they came up to visit?  The wheelchair photobombs everything!!

Well it was time to repay the visit.  I am sure the town was warned and was on high alert for our invasion!  Thankfully Mum and Dad get on with everyone so were happy to join us (& drive - thanks Dad).

The journey down was pretty uneventful, indeed we had a picnic on the way and it was lovely and warm.
H & I in the sunshine.
 Now, I could say that we had a weekend of high culture and didn't go into any pubs but I would be lying on at least one of the counts :-)

I did get up early on the Saturday and met a new friend in person.  C & I are in a carers group online and I really wanted to meet her.  Well, I couldn't go all the way there and not meet the one other person that I knew lived there.  I am so glad it worked out.  We had a real catch up and a fabulous hot choccie.

On the Saturday we went to Rochester.  Did you know that you can go into a pub and not drink alcohol???? (I sound such a lush..........), it was a cold day that day.

The only person in the group who I had not meant was D, the daughter of V & J.  Now, I have been friends with her on FB for ages but we'd not yet met.  When you see the photo below you may wonder why I was so looking forward to meeting her.  D loves SOUR sweets and I fell for the "would you like to try one?".  OMG.  The photo below is the white one - happily I don't have a photo of when I tried the green one.... you'd think I'd learn after the first time.

Still I think I've gotten my own back.

We had a lovely Greek night at P&D's on Saturday night but I was too busy to take many photos.

On Sunday we all split up and did various things.  Mum, Dad, P & I went to Chartwell, when we found it (don't ask).

Chartwell was the principal adult home of Sir Winston Churchill. Churchill and his wife Clementine bought the property, located two miles south of Westerham, Kent, England, in 1922. (taken from the web).  

P also told us that Churchill himself built a wall around the vegetable garden but never put in foundations.  The National Trust who own the building now have to decide whether to rebuild the wall for safety or keep the public away.........

I love the pumpkins hanging up in little nets. They were causing amusement and bewilderment of why they were hanging, but I just assumed that it was to stop the creepy crawlies eating them. 

I absolutely love the rose below.  I don't often go for white flowers but this one was so lovely catching the sun and any ideas what it might be called?

Churchill also ran out of money at the end of his lifetime so his friends paid for the upkeep of Chartwell so he could keep living there.  How fabulous was that?

We used the Travel Lodge in Sidcup and I couldn't have been happier.  A huge bedroom (single beds though :-( ) and our first wet room, boy did it make it easier for H.  We'll def be asking for one in future, when we travel.

Excuse the mess - I must remember to take a photo when we check in not just before we check out! Note the wheelie photobombing again............

PS The rose is called "Ice Cream"

Tuesday, 6 October 2015

Making Baby Blankets

I love crocheting blankets.  I may enjoy crocheting other things but since I love making blankets I haven't even tried much else.

H has 2 cousins who are/were expecting babies this year.  L had baby Charlie at the end of September.  He is such a cutie.  I don't usually pick bright colours but I was desperate to make him a rainbow blanket. 

I think I may have to buy more of the colours and make myself a version of it.  I absolutely love it.

Then M is expecting a little girl in November so I needed to make her a blanket too.  Now M isn't a girlie girl so the colours I picked originally, needed changing somewhat.  I decided to add a blue (I love blue) but all the way through I kept changing my mind whether I liked it or not.  Even now it has been gifted I am not convinced that I like it.  The original colours were the pale pink, purple and grey.  I then went back weeks later and got the blue and when I sat down knew it wasn't right so found the multi in my stash (I have a stash ;-) )

I have learnt a lesson.  Don't choose colours in 3 different sittings.  I wish I had chosen either a less bright blue (it's brighter in real life) or a silver grey.  These things are sent to try us.

Ironically M has decided that this baby is going to start life as a girlie girl and has embraced pink!!!!

What are you making at the moment?

Sunday, 4 October 2015

Making me HAPPY this week

It is Sunday and I have photos this week!

Making me happy this week;

1) Having a visitor on Saturday night.  Anni kept asking to go and we were getting grumpy with her.  Then I stood outside with her and saw something move.  It was so gorgeous and Anni after barking once asking to play left it alone.

2) Saying goodbye to the scary teddy bedroom - this no longer exists.  No after shot yet as boxes fill this bedroom.  The attic was finished today so all the boxes can go back and the bedroom can be a bedroom again.

3) Arranging to view another bungalow this week.  This one is also in budget, about 8 doors up from the last one but much bigger so I wouldn't have to get rid of as much junk :-) It also is future proof so if H's MS gets much worse then there is room to covert the utility room into a wet room.

4) Meeting me friend S for tea.  We had a hot choccie, a good catch up and a lovely meal at Jamie's in Leeds.  You can't beat a proper catch up.  Unfortunately it takes me sooooo long to get home from Leeds on a night - we left Jamie's at 7.35 and I walked in the door at 9.23.  I only live in the next town to Leeds, makes me so irritated.  At least I remember my book this time.

5) Starting the crochet blanket for my M-I-L for Christmas.  No photos as I am not sure whether she reads this blog or not.  I am liking my choice of colours this time.

Friday, 2 October 2015

Making me HAPPY this week

Edited:  I did write this on Sunday and planned on adding photos on Monday BUT the joys of decorating, moving a bedroom in and out of a room has thrown me totally these days.  So I am eventually posting without the photos - sorry.

Evening, it is Sunday evening but I intend to post this tomorrow when I can download the photos I have.

Making me happy this week:

1) The scary teddy bedroom is no more - well it is nearly no more, as they are still peeping through the new paint but they are definitely on their way out.  When we moved here nearly 18 years ago we didn't bother decorating the spare bedroom as we thought we'd have children and we'd want to decorate then.  Sadly it has never happened and as we hardly use the room we have just left it.  Now that we want to move the (nice) Estate Agent (EA) mentioned we should tone it down so we are.

2) Mum and Dad coming home from their hols to Cyprus.  Shush don't tell them but I do miss them both when they travel.

3) Seeing Anni's reaction when Mum and Dad came back from their holidays.  She does love my Dad (& my Mum) but she REALLY loves my Dad.  Oh was she happy when they walked through the door.  Indeed, about 20 mins before they got here, she got up and stared out of the window until they got out of the car - how do dogs know?

4)  Finishing and posting the baby blanket for D's other cousin, who is expecting a girl in Nov.  I am still not sure about the colours I used but i did learn an important lesson.  Buy the colours you want at the same time, no adding on - that way you'll decide half way through that you are not sure about your choices.........

5) A day out with G in Leeds.  We had decided to explore places we had never seen but then I had to buy a new iron and jumper and the day got away from us but I hope we can re-plan our visit another day.

Monday, 21 September 2015

Menu Planning Monday

Wow, it's been ages since I tried to menu plan.  I had hoped that by planning I could encourage H to choose something once a week for tea.  Instead, every time I ask for 1 suggestion all I get is pie............  so I gave up.  But then I struggled to cook so I am back on the wagon :-)

I am also trying to eat through the freezer a little more - it is a mess again.  No matter how hard I try to keep the freezer in some kind of order, it all eventually goes to pot!

We will be eating;

Mon :- Fish finger wraps with sweet pot fries
Tues :- Veggie Spal Bol & Garlic Bread (am trying soya mince with this one)
Wed :- Jacket Pots and Cheesy Beans/Beans
Thurs :- erm - something.........................
Fri :-Sausage, mash, giant yorkies and veggies
Sat :- Surprise
Sun :- Surprise again

Am hoping I won't need to do a big shop this week - just need to buy 2 baking potatoes and bread I think and all done.  Then I can plan an Internet shop on next week instead.

Sunday, 20 September 2015

Making me HAPPY this week

Hello.  What have you been up to lately?

Making me happy this past week;

1) Organising a new Estate agent to come down and actually give us a valuation.  God, how expensive is it to sell a house these days?!?  Wow - but I feel confident that they will work for their money - watch this space to see if I am too naive........ but I feel hopeful that it will work this time.

2) Ringing someone to come and redecorate the scary teddy bedroom (so named as when we moved it it was painted with scary teddies).  We never redecorated as we assumed we'd have children and would choose decorations then!  He is also pricing up painting the attic room and tidying up the bathroom.  Fingers crossed he'll be a decent bloke with an ok quote (pleeeeease).

3) Happy mail.  I love letters.  I made a new penpal this week and can't wait to get to know her properly.  Don't you just love happy mail.

4) Tidying the house for the EA - it looked lovely but how can it get so messy so quickly - it wasn't me.............

5) Downton Abbey starting again tonight - oh how I have waited for you.

Sunday, 13 September 2015

Making me Happy this week


I lost my blogging mojo a little there but hopefully as we make plans to move forward my head will be in a better (ie more organized) place.

Making me happy this past week are;

1) My friend N.  She ran her first Great North Run today - and in under 2 hours.  She is running to raise money for Martin House, a children's hospice in Yorkshire.  I am really proud of her.  She wanted to run, she runs and she raises money.

2) N's Birthday celebrations in Leeds.  We shopped, we ate, we drank (a little ish) and had a right laugh.  We then met up with another friend and stayed out later - on a school night too :-) Photos taken at lunchtime - I'll spare you the later ones.

D & Super N

Super N and I

3) Organising an estate agent to come down and value the house.  This time next week we should know how much it is worth and what our next move is.  I am still fearful of this as I haven't seen anything else to buy which worries me a lot.  I wish I had a magic wand to wave :-)  Still we are moving forward so that is a good thing.

4) Finishing M's baby blanket.  M is expecting a little girl in November and I just have to sew in the ends for the border and all done. (I'll try and upload a photo tomorrow so I can take it in daylight).

5) My new pj bottoms - what do you mean I am 41!!!!!!!!

All 3 pairs are from the same shop, they are all the same size.  However, the shaun the sheep are uber comfy, the birdcage ones feel massive (& may yet go back) and the Minion ones are a tiny bit tight, but i love them so they are staying.  I hate clothes shopping at the best of times - how can they be so differently sized??????  The really good bit is they are all 14-16 and I haven't fitted in that size for ages :-)

Winner, winner, chicken dinner

Apologies for the slow response but I've had a hectic few days so am running behind plans a little.

Thank you for those people who commented on my blog post celebrating my 2 year bloggerversary.  Special mention to my Mum, whose comment didn't show as she didn't know how to do it properly, I'll show you next time :-)

Drum roll please............................................

The winner is Angel Jem.  I will see if I can fit your message onto the notebook this week and then get everything in the post to you.  I will let you know if the word beautiful won't fit (I think we maybe ok if it's not in a straight line - or will that drive you crazy?).  I'll be in touch soon when I've tried it out.

PS Anyone know where the phrase "Winner, winner, chicken dinner" comes from?

Thursday, 3 September 2015

Happy 2nd Blogerversary

It's been 2 years since I started this little blog of mine.  2 whole years.  Wow.  Where has the time gone.  2 years ago I could never imagine where I would be today.  There have been hard times and you know what there have been good times too.

I am in a pretty good place at the moment.  It may not be the place that I wanted to be in, and it might not be one I would have chosen but it is here and it is now and it is pretty good.

So to celebrate I am having a giveaway on this little old blog.  Any excuse to share a little happy mail out there.  I love happy mail and I hope you do too.  Want to see what I have collected for you???  All the gifts are to show you a little of what makes me tick.

A new notebook - you can choose what you want spelling out on the front - within reason.  Please see star baker for an example.

You have to have chocolate and I have to say I am not a fussy girl when it comes to choccie.  Make it chocolate and I am happy.

Fabric gift tape - covered in little pink flowers.

There will also be a set of 6 handmade notecards and 6 second class stamps so you can keep in touch with people you love (not pictured as not made yet!).  There may also be one or two little surprises to look forward to.

All you have to do to win is to leave a comment telling me what you'd like on the front of the notebook if you win.  I'll pick a winner on Thursday 10th September at noon (uk time).

I AM Bothered - warning heavy post

I'm currently watching the lunchtime news and I AM bothered.

I have been following the migrant crisis (& I think we are in a crisis) since Spring.  I think I was aware of it before the news stations picked it up because my heart belongs on a Greek island called Lesbos.  You will have heard of Lesbos now - 6 months ago you probably wouldn't have.  Lesbos is 3 miles from the coast of Turkey and since Spring has been a major stopping point for little boats bringing desperate people from Turkey (& further afield).

For a long time, every morning, I checked that all the boats had arrived safely.  They had either landed themselves or been rescued by the Greek Coastguard based in Molyvos (one of the villages closest to Turkey).  Then one day in early Summer the news came out that people had drowned including 3 children.

Molyvos is a big village, dependant on Tourism.  Lesbos is the 3rd largest Greek Island but not the biggest population wise, population wise it is relatively small.  The people of Molyvos (& other villages of Lesbos) have done so much for the refugees. Indeed until this Summer, it was illegal to offer a lift to any refugee- you could be prosecuted for being a people smuggler, so once the migrants had reached land they had to walk to the capital, Mytilene.  That journey is 60Kms.  Thankfully the Greek government changed this law so transport can now be taken, when it's available.

In just 5 days in July 10,000 migrants reached Molyvos - yup, in 5 days.  There is no official help for migrants on the island, it is volunteers who help where they can.  Times are very hard in Greece and yet many people on Lesbos have come together to help where they can.

None of this made the news.  Not until the crisis intensified.  Now, everyday the news is on tv, we see 1,000's of migrants in a number of countries desperately trying to move on to somewhere they think they will have a better life.

Today, alone there is 3 year Aylan who sadly washed up on a Turkish beach, along with his 5 year old brother and Mum.  So desperate that his Mum took the risk of getting on little more than a blow up dingy to find a better life, and who paid the price which their lives.

Then in Hungary, and I think they thought they were doing the right thing, they filled a train and instead of going to Austria/Germany they took the train into the countryside to put the migrants into camps (now this idea reminds me of another time and I am sad that the authorities didn't see why this may not be a good idea).

I don't know the answers.  I really don't BUT when families are fleeing a war torn country should we not have the compassion to help.  Should we not take more families and help them settle into our country and try and show them that although they have been through hell, there are people out there who are willing to show them that life can be good again.

Some people in this country (& others) say we should look after our own before we help others and I understand these thoughts.  I have many friends I have met in the MS world and when I see what help they often don't get it makes me angry but I don't believe in my heart that by helping families from Syria this will impact the help that is offered to others.

I do believe that we owe these families a safe haven and David Cameron you should man up and act now.

If you have read this far then thank you.  I wouldn't usually post such a serious post but I AM BOTHERED.

Wednesday, 2 September 2015

Making me Happy this week


Is it not still Sunday????  Erm, lost my blogging mojo a little lately but I have tomorrow's post nearly ready to go so hopefully we be back on track again.

Making me happy this past week;

1) Making (well decorating) a notebook for a friend who needed cheering up.  Ooh I love glittering material :-)  Must make myself something with it.

2) Using the new sundae glasses I bought Dave.  It amazes me what you can buy on e-bay!!! I've whole hog of strawberry/chocolate sauces, mini marshmallows.  I keep picking things up to add when I am out and about.  My fav so far are 100's & 1,000's.  So yummy.

3) The new toy for the dog.  It was meant to be for Christmas - what do you mean I am mad buying her presents............ but I accidentally squeaked it getting something out of the box and she stared at me for 2 hours til I gave in - getting a photo of her playing with it is another matter!!!!! The best one below is on my knee (out takes below that!!!!)

4) Having a wuss for a dog.... someone dared walk down the street outside - can you see her ? Erm, excuse the mess.

How about now?

5) Going to A's for tea.  So nice not having to cook for a night.

Sunday, 23 August 2015

Making me HAPPY this week


My number 1 this week is still making me smile!!

1) Today, H and I wheeled him up to the supermarket in his wheelie.  Now, it is a slow, long hill to get to the supermarket but that is not what has stopped us (me) so far.  It's that not every kerb has a dropped kerb -so I have to lift a wheelie with a 12 stone (ish) man in it up and down the kerb.  The worst one has a dropped kerb but it directs you out into oncoming traffic (backwards).  I wish road planners had to actually think about these things.  Anyway, back to the happy.  We did it.  We bought some lovely fresh bread and made it home.  Neither of us can remember the last time he has been in a supermarket which didn't involve a bus ride (& I think we have only done that twice all year).  I was hot by the time we got home - so no photo of a hot and sweaty me :-)  We have agreed to do it again next time we have a dry day.  No stopping us now...........

2) Girl's night at N's last night.  It involved junk food, wine, music, gossip and friendship - what more could you ask for?

V, N, D & I

3) Finishing and posting a finished baby blanket.  I really like the colours on this one and think an adult sized version will be added to my list of blankets to make.  I hope baby Charlie loves it when he arrives shortly.

4) Meeting C for lunch.  I bet it's been a year since we met up, and there really is no excuse, as she works in the town next to me.  When I feel overwhelmed I tend to retreat into my shell a little, but I keep pushing myself and I do get there in the end.  I loved the Turkish cafe C.

5) Finally getting control of my Diet Coke addiction.  We bought water bottles which I have been refilling and keeping by my side at all times in the house.  I have even gone and bought bigger ones today for in the house, and the original smaller one is to use on my travels.  Since the little bottle arrived last week, I have kept to 1 can of DC a day, for me that is a real achievement.  I am using dilute juices for now, but hope to ignore my hatred for water soon :-)

What's been making you happy lately?

Wednesday, 19 August 2015

Day Whatever - Failure

Ah well, you may have noticed by now that the photos have stopped.  I have discovered that although I may have taken a photo or 2 each day, I usually blog on a night and uploading (and waiting for them to update) and then writing a blog post and adding photos just is too much effort on a bad day.

SO I SUCK - there you go.  I have to say I feel much better admitting it and I already have my next post in my head :-)

Monday, 10 August 2015

Day 10 - Can you tell it's been raining?

I popped into Leeds today to meet a friend for a belated Birthday lunch.  Whilst sitting chatting, the sky grew darker and darker and it absolutely belted it down.  Huge drops bouncing off of the pavement, people rushing to try and stay dry (& failing miserably).

The bus home was somewhat delayed - I am not sure how it happens that one bus route is affected but others that go on some of the same route keep going.  A 1 hour journey took nearly 2 hours.  When I FINALLY got home, I discovered that our front garden has been invaded by snails.  Can you see them below?

How about now?  Ughhhhhhhhhhhhhhh.

Sunday, 9 August 2015

Things making me HAPPY (& Day 9 Peace & Quiet)

Making me happy this week;

1)  N coming for a sleep over last night.  A few drinks, takeaway and planning an adventure or two for the future (no photos allowed!)

2)  It not raining and being a little bit sunny (at times), so walking Anni has to be planned carefully so she doesn't overheat.  She loves the river (currently little more than a stream) at the bottom of this slope - can you see my Mum & Dad down there in the bottom????  It is so quiet down there.

3) My Carers group on Facebook.  They have been lifesavers.  It seems that lots of people are struggling at that moment and that makes me sad, then someone jumps into support and that makes me happy.

4) Going out to celebrate my parent's anniversary.  I love that H and I are making more of an effort to get and about in the wheelie - it's amazing how many pavements aren't flat........

5) Eating up all my goodies so my being good-er starts tomorrow!!!!!!  Whoop.  My goal is to be a size 14 for a wedding next Summer  - there I have said it.  Now I have to try and do it.

Day 8 - Looking down

Late again.  Look at those roots clinging to the hillside.  An old lady of the woods.

Still haven't remembered to take the camera out with me - maybe tomorrow!!!

Friday, 7 August 2015

Day 7 - Looking Up

Hello,  What a fabulous day today has been.  I mean blue skies and sunshine all day - must make nearly a week of sunshine spread out over the year so far.

I popped into Huddersfield today.  I still get a shock when it costs me £4.70 to catch the bus somewhere and back.  I remember riding for pennies when I was a lass....ok so that's going back a bit.

The thing I love about living in my Northern town is how beautiful the buildings are.  I live nearest to Bradford (less said the better) but the buildings are gorgeous.  In Huddersfield today, I took the time to look at some of the buildings - not at the shop level but higher.  Could you even imagine building something like this these days???

Thursday, 6 August 2015

Day 6 Contentment

Oh, we have had words today.  One of us was too excited and hurt the other one.  One shouted in pain and the other was instantly sorry.  Then the one which was hurt felt really guilty and shared her food with the other..................

Now, we have contentment - phew.

I have a dog curled at my feet, and she has her babbit - pure contentment!

PS I did not eat her food!!!

Wednesday, 5 August 2015

Day 5

Day 4 - Love

This one is easy.   Mum and Dad celebrating their wedding anniversary today.  47 years.  

Tuesday, 4 August 2015

Day 3 (whoops) and Day 4

Oops, I took photo's yesterday, truly I did, but never uploaded them.

Day 3 - Something red (thanks for the idea, Angel Jem)

I was wandering round thinking what on earth do I have that is red, then I looked at the dog.....

A red harness

red harness
A red lead
Red lead
A red nose??????????  Can you see the face?

Day 4 - Something else red- any ideas what it is??????  No, me neither and that's why I don't get modern art/sculpture!

and finally flowers in Leeds - not a colour I would pick myself and don't have any in the garden.

Ok, so I cheated with 2 days of red but I was intrigued with the red "thingy" (technical term) in Leeds.