Sunday, 31 August 2014

Rather a useless day today

Serves me right of course, and I blame the red wine.  One glass - I ask you, ONE GLASS last night and it's stuffed up my day today.  No, before you ask the glass wasn't the size of a bucket, but it was a large one at 175 ml.  I had a pint of iced water along with it too, but unfortunately it got a grip of me and I didn't get up until 10.30 today.

I had all manner of things planned too.  Hoped to be up by 7-ish, washed and dressed, out to Morrisons for the weekly shop, visit daughter for a quick coffee and then do some gardening this afternoon.  I had a mound of paperwork to wade through as well - pension stuff now I've retired.  What did I do? Here's the list:

  • Dossed around feeling rubbish
  • Stared at the paperwork
  • Did nothing about it
  • Made a coffee
  • Had breakfast
  • Looked at the clock and decided it was too late to start much
  • Answered phone to daughter
  • "If you're coming round can you bring some milk?"  Cheeky madam!
  • Groaned
  • Decided maybe I should get my backside in gear
  • Went to post office and missed the post
  • Groaned
  • Got milk
  • Went to daughters
  • Made coffee
  • She was banging about upstairs so I shouted up to ask what she was doing
  • "Come up and see"
  • I went upstairs only to have a paint brush shoved in my hand
  • "Do us that door, will you?"
  • Groaned
  • Painted door with brush and mini gloss roller
  • Coughed a lot
  • Drank my cold coffee
  • We both finished off and went downstairs
  • Caught up with Coronation Street on her fancy telly 
  • Had another coffee (warm this time)
  • Had her cat on my lap
  • My jeans had a fur coat
  • I went home
  • Made a sandwich for Grumpy Trousers
  • Went to Morrisons
  • Groaned
  • Saw old chum
  • Had a natter with old chum
  • Laughed with old chum
  • Head cleared
  • Felt better
  • Went home and unpacked shopping
  • Made a quiche from scratch
  • Figured I'd done enough for one day
  • Paperwork still there
  • I'm still procrastinating as will be obvious from this posting!

Friday, 29 August 2014

Now where was I?

Oooh, hello.  Nice to see are you?  We've not had a catch up in a while.  So, tell me YOUR news!  You might want to get in first because I have a load of stuff to recount.  Make a start while I nip and put the kettle on.  Carry on - I can still hear you over this jet engine that purports to be my kettle.  Bloody thing!

You did WHAT?  Crikey, I thought I was growing old disgracefully but that beats me into a cocked hat.  How much did you have to drink for goodness sake?  How on earth did you explain to your other half about the mysterious mobile number on a scrap of paper in your purse?  Oh I's one of your gal-pals.

Was she pi$$ed as well then?  Right, don't tell me any more - been there, got the t-shirt.  I know what's coming next - security had to come and unlock the cubicle door because SOMEONE was too drunk to do it from the inside, and the queue of crossed-legged squealing twenty-somethings were cursing the drunk old tart who got herself locked in Trap 1. 

 By heck, that seems like last year.  Oh wait a minute, it WAS only last year.  It wasn't me locked in the trap though, so that's twice you've done that, you daft mare. Eee, how we laughed.  Look at us - we're STILL laughing.  It's a good job we still can.  Proper immature for women our age though.  Yes, I know it only happens once in a blue moon, that's how we justify it.  Perish the thought of it happening more often.

Here, shut up now and drink your coffee, I think I've heard enough lavatorial languishings for one day.

This bizarre conversation happens to be true and is one I had with an old chum yesterday when she made an impromptu visit.  Years ago we vowed to grow old disgracefully and it looks like we managed it.  We are definitely not your stereotypical Sixty-somethings, for sure.  We kind of fell into the disgraceful category, found we enjoyed it and it went from there.
There's more stupid exploits to relate and thereby hangs another post :-)

I never did get to tell her my stuff.  It didn't matter anyway - we had jaw-ache with laughing!

Also, what I want to know is.....what's the most disgraceful thing YOU'VE ever done?  Your turn to confess!

Sunday, 17 August 2014

Hip Injection a Success - and Rant About My Car

Crikey, this is like a formal announcement!  I guess it deserves one because the cortisone injection in my hip worked really well.  I've been up and down stairs like a rat up a drain pipe.  No burning or stinging pains, no nerve pain shooting down my leg.  Nothing.  Nada.  I have no idea how long it will last, but after 2 weeks I'm walking much more normally, well there's still a slight waddle but nothing of any significance.  So while I'm blessed with this I'm attempting to make the most of it while I can.

I've tramped through town over the damn market cobbles, I've walked the half mile to our local shops, and hope to be back doing my exercises when I get the all clear to try again.  I never thought I'd see this day, I really didn't.  If I could measure my euphoria on a scale of Misery to Delight, it would be up the top end nestling about a 9.5 with Delight.  I'm taking a half point off due to a dull ache that persists when I get in bed.  BUT, that's the only time I need to take painkillers.  I've been a bit guilty from time to time of taking more than the prescribed dose - out of desperation, so it's brilliant that I only need 2 now.

Car problems
I have a nifty Vauxhall that developed a steering problem last week.  The EPS light came on so I contacted the main dealer who I've always had it serviced with and was asked to bring it in for a diagnostic check.  After the test had been carried out and I was £79 poorer, they told me I needed a new steering column and a new clutch.  There were some other bits and pieces that I already knew about but I certainly wasn't expecting a quote of - OMG wait for this......£2,500!!  My car's only got 44,000 miles on it and in top nick.  Anyway, the receptionist who looked like a false eyelashed, fake tanned 12 years old then announced to me that it wasn't worth repairing and I should think about trading it in.  Wait - it got worse.....or one of their own mechanics "would probably buy it off you to do up".  I was livid but calmly asked for my keys and walked out after telling them I was going for a second opinion.

To cut a long story very short, a  brilliant local guy who has a repair shop looked it over and declared nothing wrong with the clutch - just a bit heavy, but he couldn't get to the sensor on the steering to check that.  He also advised it should have been carried out under Vauxhall warranty - never mind demanding that I pay for it.  Oh, and one of the little jobs that needed doing that the main dealer quoted over £90 for, got done with local guy for £40.  I was seriously naffed off with the main dealer and put in a complaint.  The service manager rang and tried to give me a load of bull-shit but I stuck to my guns and they eventually agreed to replace the steering column under Vauxhall warranty.

However, the flipping thing is STILL not right - the indicator doesn't cancel after turning left (nothing wrong with it before), and the steering is also heavier while turning left.  It's much lighter turning right.  So, another phone call to the main dealer, this time to the head honcho.  Result - it's booked in yet again for Monday morning.  If they bugger me about again, they can get ready!

There....rant over - feel SO much better now!

Friday, 8 August 2014

It's been a funny old week..............

Hey you!  How are you doing?  I hope all's well in your household, and if you're in the UK are you making the best of this warm and wet summer?

Did it chuck it down in your neck of the woods tonight?  We had a belter of a storm together with so much rain.  There'll be Floody Hell's all over Britain again after this.  I'm not going to dwell on that. We need something cheerful and positive to focus on don't we?

I'm bullet listing below some of the positive stuff that's happened in  my life this week.

  • Had an interview on Monday for a volunteer role with the RVS to be a member of the Home Library Service.  I was chuffed to bits to be accepted.  This is to visit housebound people to help them return and choose new library books, CD's and DVD's.  Apparently there's a great demand for the service and I'm looking forward to getting started.
  • Not only have I managed to secure that, I've also been asked by them if I'd be interested in Community Driving.  This is taking people to doctor's, dentist or hospital appointments.
  • Not done yet......because my IT skills are up to date, there's a huge need for tutors to help older people set up their emails and Skype.  I especially like the idea of this, if I can help even one person to communicate with their friends and family then I'll have done a good job.
  • On Tuesday, I had the cortisone injection in my hip.  It felt a bit fragile immediately after, and the physio guy said sit would be about 48 hours before it kicked in.  I was also instructed to take it easy for a few days and not do anything to aggravate it, i.e. digging the garden (fat chance), or going hiking (even fatter chance).  When I got home, Grumpy Trousers announced we were short of a few bits and bobs from the supermarket.  I reminded him that I have to take it easy, and promptly wrote him a shopping list together with a route plan of Morrisons.  Bless him he got all the right stuff - and two cream cakes as well. 
  • Grumpy Trousers and I spent a full morning out in Chesterfield yesterday, mainly for me to return some forms to the library, then afterwards browsing the flea market.  There's so much intriguing stuff on there, and it would definitely take a full day to get round it. I got tired quickly though and my hip ached a bit so we called it a day.  We later had lunch with our younger daughter.  She went back to work and us lazy sods went home for a nap!

I've been busy decorating jars and bottles again.  There's a new batch destined for a friend's 90th birthday party, some for my elder daughter and I'm holding some back for using at a fund raiser I'm doing for The World's Biggest Coffee Morning for Macmillan nurses.

I've popped a few images on here so you can see what I've been doing, and it will also explain why my hair is full of raffia bits and my fingers are flaky with lumps of dried up PVA glue!

Friends are being so brilliant at saving all manner of jars and bottles for me to play with.  The one with the butterfly label above is a Shippams Beef Spread jar for example.  The square one at the top that looks like an inkwell had preserved fruits in it, and I think the rest are mayonnaise jars.  I'm in another zone when I sit quietly doing my crafts.  I have some relaxing  music on and all feels right with the world.

Oh, and I've had a right old issue with my car that needs a post all of its own.  I'll be ranting - be warned.

For now though, I do hope there's a good weekend ahead for you.

Hasta la vista xxxxxx

Sunday, 3 August 2014

Reasons I haven't done much blogging lately

Finding the time to blog at the moment is a bit of a struggle.  You see, we went away for a few days, two weeks on the trot.  First visit was three days in Lincolnshire with our friends.  It was on the coast near Mablethorpe which we affectionately call Mab-le-thorpe.

For those who don't know the area, its a seaside town on the east coast of England, but it doesn't get much tourism investment and sadly has lost some of it's shine.  The beach however is absolutely beautiful with flat, damp sand that you can walk on for miles.  For me that's it's only redeeming quality so my friend and I like to make it sound posher than it actually is.  The surrounding seaside towns are also a bit run down so we verbally spruce them up by referring to them with French sounding names.  Sutton on Sea becomes Sutton sur la Mer, and my favourite is Chapel St Leonards turning in Chappelle san Leonard.  At these places all you can see for miles are caravans and trailers.  Pretty soulless eh?  But perhaps they afford cheap holidays for families who just like to play on the beach, although given the weather in the UK at times, holidays there won't work out THAT cheap.  For example, two options for when it's raining - sit inside the caravan and play games (good option and very cheap), or take bored kids to the arcades and have lunch in a greasy spoon cafe (not cheap).  Believe me, I know, we've done it when the kids were little.  We once totted up the cost of such a holiday and quite honestly, we could have gone abroad!

Despite what I said above, I have the greatest affection for these little seaside towns.  They struggle to keep going without the investment that the bigger resorts get, yet they still provide something for everyone.  Yes it's limited with arcades, cheapo shops selling tat, bingo halls and karaoke, but people still like this stuff.  My friend and I went into Mablethorpe to walk along the beach. It was a really hot day but we enjoyed the breeze coming off the water and the sand under our feet.  We put on our shoes and went up to the promenade to sit on a bench with an ice cream each.  Not just any old ice cream, but a blooming great '99' with twin flakes no less.  Our philosophy is if you're going to have one, have a big 'un!

photo courtesy of

 It was great smelling the fish and chips and candy floss, not to mention hearing the sounds of the funfair and children's laughter.  We walked back to the car by a different route that took us on a man made path on top of the dunes.  By that time it was scorching hot and we arrived at the car red in the face, looking very much like twin beetroots.  Not a good look!  Opening the car door was like opening an oven so we had to stand at let the heat out before we dare sit in to go back to the nearby village where we were staying.

Here's a jolly image of Mablethorpe.  It's a nice picture and shows off the beach to its best.


The second slot of time away was the following week where we spent 3 days in Great Malvern, Worcestershire, helping our elder daughter decorate her yoga studio that she is renting right in the town centre.  It's a huge room which will take a class of ten comfortably, twelve at a push.  It was pretty hard going, decorating in 30 degree heat.  The paint was drying almost immediately, so it was dragging off the roller.  It slowed things up somewhat but we got it done and it looks magnificent.  All pure white, with red doors and a red carpet.  The carpet was already down but it's almost new so there was no reason to change it.  Red is an energising colour and Kat was happy to keep it.  She's put some lovely little touches around the place, like some wall art of a flock of butterflies, and of course there'll be other Yoga orientated stuff going on.

We so want her to succeed at this venture as a yoga teacher.  Although it's her side-job, it's her main interest and has been for years.  She works hard at it and deserves to do well.  She'll be setting up a new website soon called Great Malvern Yoga.  It's not live yet but I'll do a link to it as soon as it is.

This is her finding alternative uses for good old Morrison's carrier bags to cover the light fittings while painting the ceiling.

Saturday, 2 August 2014

Shabby or what?

Crikey peoples, now I've retired time is running away with me!  It's a while since I posted, yet every day I think of something I want to write and share with you.  Can I find the time?  Can I heck!

I'm making time now because it's Saturday evening and I booted Grumpy Trousers off to the pub.  I must say he didn't take any persuading, but his mates will be there, plus our daughter is working on the bar tonight so it will do him good to get from under my feet for a while.

Now, here's the shabby bit.  I was a PA to some high-faluting directors in blue chip companies in my past life, and as such you'd think I'd be terribly well organised wouldn't you?  Well, wrong.  I'm ditsy, and getting ditsier by the day.  The inside of my head is like a shabby old cupboard, full of crap with nothing of any importance.  Example:  today I suddenly remembered that I have a physio appointment soon for a cortisone injection in my hip (to match the one in my foot).  I didn't put the appointment on the kitchen calendar, nor did I put it on the calendar in my phone.  Or in my diary.  I have a letter for an appointment later in the month, but not one for next week.  I began to get worried and turfed out all my drawers in search of it, and I also disrupted the dumping ground for bits of paper that no-one knows what to do with.  It wasn't anywhere.  In a last ditch attempt, I emptied my purse of all its Morrisons vouchers and saving stamps, together with receipts for coffees we had while in Wales at Easter (see, I told you I was shabby!) and lo and behold, there it was, nestling in a little corner of my purse was an tiny appointment card for Tuesday next week at 8.15am.  Phew, thank goodness for that.

This is happening a bit too much lately.  I am so easily distracted and lose track of what I should be doing.  I have a strong need to retrain my brain to become more efficient, then at least I won't fret about forgetting stuff.   Another example is I double booked myself last week.  I invited two chums round for a glass of wine last Monday evening, then realised I should have been going to an Aquacise class at the local pool.  I hastily cancelled the class in favour of wine and gossip.  I'm such a dopey mare sometimes.  When I get into a proper routine with this retirement malarkey, I think I'll fare a bit better.

I was out with a couple of chums last night as one of them had a milestone birthday.  We went to a local steak house, drank lots of Rose wine, got giggly, shared some gossip, and generally had a great time. 

Here's a picture of me (in spotty blouse) with one of  my friends from last evening.  We were a bit squiffy when the photo was taken.  Mind you we do look pretty happy too.

That could explain why I feel a bit shabby today!