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Showing posts from January, 2015

Lilac Time

A man came into the shop yesterday and asked me about some lilac wool he'd phoned up to reserve. I duly brought it out for him and my colleague asked what it was for. It turns out he's done a bit of bartering with a friend. She needed a couple of jobs doing around the house, he offered to do them in return for her knitting him a jumper. He owns a Morris Million car. When Morris Minor production hit one million cars in the early 60's they released a special edition, 350 lilac cars. This man is having a jumper made to match the colour of the car!

We went straight out after I'd been at the shop yesterday so I didn't see the garden until this morning. For quite a few years I've been unhappy about a large tree in the garden across the back (there, no back street between the houses so our garden wall is the garden wall of the neighbour behind, if you see what I mean). It was a lovely tree and very useful for the birds but it meant that the majority of our garden was i…

Sorting Without Moving

I'm still not well, but I am better. In between naps I've been sorting a few things out and that makes me happy. 

When we had a sort out the other week I ended up with a few empty boxes and other storage. I've used a tin to store all the packets of seeds and have written a planting list, otherwise they'd continue to be strewn around the house and garage and never see the light of day. I forgot to plant the onions, so that's a thing, but never mind, I'm still in time for everything else. 

I've faced up to something I've been needing to deal with for months.  I'd always wanted one of those cantilever sewing boxes, so when one came into the shop ages ago I was made up. The thing is, however lovely I find it, it's just not useful to me, so with a heavy heart I'm donating it tomorrow. I think I'd have to be far tidier and more organised than I actually am to use a sewing box like that. 

Today I have to face the fridge. I haven't opened the f…

Wobbling About

I've been up and about, after a fashion, for the past two days. 

Being ill is a bit like Christmas isn't it? when it's happening you want to remember all the little things that make life so amazing, but then when Christmas is gone, or the illness fades then things get back to normal and you just don't remember how you felt at the time. 

I haven't missed cooking. I won't miss coughing. I have missed nipping out for a stroll in the gorgeous sun we've had this week. I have missed getting up to do just one more thing, I have missed enjoying being in bed, and I have missed the fun that comes from having my eyes open.

Forced Into Thinking

I want to do all these things, and I have all these exciting plans*, and I also have some kind of lurgy - the legs hurt so much you don't want to stand up, or sit down, or lie down, or think about having legs kind. Very annoying!

So here I am, under a blanket thinking about things but not actually doing the things. The Desire Map popped into my head for the first time in ages. I didn't finish the book as the battery on my kindle ran out and I don't seem to have the charging wire anymore, who knows where that went. But I was thinking about how things have changed since I had my dark night of the soul at the start of last year. 

Things have changed quite a lot. I remembered my "core desired feelings" and thought about them for a bit. I'm doing fairly well with them. My main word was light, while I haven't managed to shed any physical weight I am a lot lighter in my general being. I don't take things as seriously, when things aren't really anything to …

Charity Shop Treats

Last year, other than lawn mowing and heavy digging (which I like doing, so wasn't all that happy to have to share) I did most of the gardening As part of the new budget situation Dan has agreed/suggested it would be a good idea for him to be more involved this year. As you can see, I need all the help I can get!
He told me he needs direction. So far he has watched two episodes of the allotment programme on BBC2, and looked at a magazine. The magazine (from June) was interesting but not all that useful in January, so when I said I thought we had some at the shop, it was decided that I'd buy them. So I did, 7 copies of various gardening magazines for £2, not bargain basement price but not too bad. 
There's lots of to be done, but it's far too windy today so I'll have a cup of tea and think about things instead. 
I received some cash gifts for my birthday, so I had in mind that I'd buy some kind of keepsake. I was doing a bit of dusting when I saw a nice silver bra…

From Across The World

Back in September I spoke about how upset I was to find out thirdhand that one of my best friends had moved overseas.

On my birthday, an email landed. The date had pinged into their head and they sent me birthday greetings. There was also a very sincere apology for not seeing me before they left.

I now feel a little bit bad for thinking they'd left me behind, especially as there's no other way they'd be reminded that it was my special day other than just knowing it. I am beyond happy to have reconnected with them and to hear how happy they are establishing themselves in this new place. It was a splendid birthday gift.

Money Stuff

Dan returned to work today after a thee week holiday. He's spent much of that time looking for ways to deal with his emotions and the stress surrounding his job and some of his colleagues. Nothing has been off limits really, but he's made friend with meditation and mindfulness. 

Due to another strand we've been exploring we're embarking on a new experiment/ way of living. Dan has been having a look at what's available in the jobs market. There's not a lot around here, and jobs he has seen are on a much lower salary. So, from next month we're giving ourselves a 25% pay cut.

This will be helpful for a number of reasons, mainly so we can have a rough idea of how things might be if the household income was lower, but for other reasons too. Obviously it will be a great chance for us to bolster the savings, but the most important thing, other than day to day living, will be to learn to deal with occasional expenses such as new glasses, car expenses, vet bills, Dan&…


Our lovely bubble was popped the other day when we went to Next. I don't really have anything against next, I love their leggings and their sizes are generous so I always feel extra trim wearing their clothes! However, we don't go there very often, so it wasn't a very fun experience when we went to get rid of the gift voucher we received for Christmas. Still, it's gone now and Dan and I have kissed and made up. 

The holiday and my birthday celebrations are officially over. Last night we went to the cinema to see Foxcatcher. I was really interested to see Steve Carell's transformation. I really enjoyed it - well I don't know if enjoyed is the right word, although throughout I just kept wondering how they'd made Channing Tatum look like Wayne Rooney!

Anyway, enough of that. The menu plan is out of the window and may stay that way for a while. We had some dhal at Cross Lanes on Thursday and I was inspired by the way it was served. So I'm moving away from one…

Ins and Outs

I had always been an untidy person, when I was little my room was a tip, no floor space to been seen, a bed full of "stuff", pockets full and things stuffed into all manner of nooks and crannies. Then I'd have a clear out and things would be perfect. Then I'd silt everything up again. On and on it went in a cycle of all or nothing. Then in 2003 I left my job and it was time to deal with things. 

For a while I churned my stuff, moving it around and around but not getting anywhere. I think I spoke about it ages ago, but my house was bad, tv show bad, keep the blinds closed bad. Then one day in 2004 someone turned up at the house unexpectedly and I had to let them in. It was awful, the man was very pleasant but spoke to me as though I was stupid. It was the jolt I needed. Don't roll your eyes but someone pointed me in the direction of the one and only Flylady and my life changed forever. Very slowly, but permanently.

Like many people I've been having a sort out at…

January Menu Plan

A few days later than usual but December is a funny old month isn't it!

The cobbled together curry ended up being pretty luxurious (for us) we used an onion, carrot, broccoli, mushrooms, peas, sweetcorn, Thai paste, coconut milk and topped it with avocado, pumpkin seeds and cashews, served with udon noodles. 

We still have a couple of meals in the freezer, so that makes for an easy weekend. Next week is a bit wonky as we will be out and about doing birthday stuff, but we don't know when, and at the start of the week Dan has some medical tests so won't be eating. 

1. lentil balti (fr)
2. Thai spiced rice l/o coconut milk
3. shepherdess pie (fr)

4. shepherdess pie (fr)
5. spiced mushrooms w. tandoori potatoes
6. -
7. -
8. out
9. -
10 -

11 -
12 bean tagine w. harissa and coriander
13 leek & butterbean crumble
14 lentil bol
15 haggis (fr)
16 l/o haggis
17 enchiladas

18 sausage casserole half pack
19 spice roasted squash w. plaki & wraps
20 ratatouille w. l/o squash
21 l/o w. jacket potatoes