Friday, 16 December 2011

And there we have it ...

... things achieved, Christmas shopping all done, house tidy, ready to be decorated with the kiddy-winks over the next few days (white paper snowflakes, anyone?), proofreading assignment finished and sent, getting back into reading properly (Dickens at the moment, a bit of festive grotesqueness with The Old Curiosity Shop).  And relax.  I don't know what I felt so blue about last week - I do annoy myself sometimes.

There's a massive pile of clean washing on the couch opposite me (we have two couches), and it's not bothering me in the slightest.  I know I'll get around to dealing with it eventually, hopefully before Christmas Day.  I am calmness, I am chilledness.  Probably because I gave myself an actual slap across the face the other day, and told myself to stop being so moody and useless.

That is all I have to say really.  I have my mojo, and I will use it tomorrow to help me to do a small cycle, of perhaps 40 or 50 miles.  Funny how I now consider this to be a short distance.  Hmm.

If I don't see you before, have a lovely Christmas.  I personally cannot wait for it to be all over, and for January the 1st to be here (one of my favourite days of the year) - I'm getting very bored of it, and would like to do something different at this time of year.


Monday, 5 December 2011

Time - could I have a little more please?

An abundance of time is what I actually have.  But I squander it, all the time.  One would think that I might be a little more careful of the ways in which I spend my time, since I am acutely aware of how quickly it can run out.  But, as I've said before, I am inherently lazy (if I use that word, 'inherently', it allows me to take no responsibility for my laziness, do you see?) and find it difficult to resist a sit on the couch, a nice brew, and a biscuit.

I've have achieved pretty much ... nothing this week.  I have started to do the pre-Christmas clean-up, but the house is a bombsight.  Actually, it's a bin.  Actually, a giant skip.  But I can see light somewhere, and it'll be alright.  This is the first year I have not allowed the state of the house to stress me out - and it's telling, because I've passed the stress on to Kev who cannot believe how stupidly messy every room is!  Ha ha!  :D  And I just can't get up the energy to care; 'it'll get done', I keep saying.  I suppose one day soon I might have a burst of energy and finish it all off.

I'm not writing anything, not even the new cycling blog.  I'm writing neither hubs, nor Goodreads book reviews.  I'm not even writing in a diary.  Nothing.  I'm watching telly and crocheting.  No novel-writing is going on at all.  I have an assignment to get finished for my proofreading course, my very last assignment, and I'm just not doing it.

I'm shopping online, and I'm eating, and I'm sitting about.  Oh, and learning Russian.  I suppose that's something - but it's not something useful, it's just something I like doing.


Yeah, yeah, I will.  Just let me finish this brew and this biscuit.

One thing I really would like to do, once I've got that assignment out of the way, and written some cycling articles, and some hubs, and some chapters of my novel, is to catch up on reading the work of my favourite hubber, Twilight Lawns.  He's my friend, and he always reads my hubs, even when no one else does.  He deserves the same special treatment back.  That's one of the very important things that I have to do.  It's on the List.

I think I'm not enjoying winter this year - I think it's sapping my energy, which it's never done before.  I don't like it.  I'm looking forward to spring.  But spring's not coming for ages, so I'd better find a way to be friends with winter.  I will.  Maybe when my house is tidy.  Maybe when the kids have finished school for Christmas and we can spend time making decorations and Christmas bakes.  That'll be lovely.  We can have carols on, and cover the place with tinsel and snowflakes.  I think we'll have a very tiny tree this year, as I am not in the mood for a big one.

What's up with me, I wonder?  My inner core of blissful happiness is still intact, but I've got a crusty, snappy shell that's doing my head in.  I think it should bugger off.

Monday, 28 November 2011

Hell, yeah!

Me and my brother Noomski have decided to write a blog together.  Actually, it was all my idea, because I'm clever like that.  And Tezmondi is new to the world of blogging, though he's been thinking of having a pop for ages.

That's it, right there.  You wanna check it out, because it's going to be quite exciting, and quite funny, and just generally quite interesting.  We're going to try, once we've written a couple more entries, to get it featured on a newspaper website, or something like that.  We're quite eager to get our little project noticed and followed, because we'd like to be local celebrities.  Yeah.

You don't have to read it if you don't want to, but I do think it's going to be good.  We're going to write articles together, write sort of journal entries about our training, useful info and bits of advice (tongue in cheek, absolutely no doubt) to do with chafing and fibre, tyres and Lycra.  We might interview people (probably just each other, actually), pop on photos of our adventures, do cartoons of things we didn't manage to photograph.  I'm hoping it'll be like a sort of magazine style of blog.  Jam-packed full of information and stories and interesting things, written by two people who are not professional cyclists and who do not take themselves at all seriously.  You might as well just read it, because if you don't, everyone else will be talking about it, and you'll start to feel left out.

Enjoy :)

Monday, 14 November 2011


Quick post, if I can manage it; got to type up my book synopsis to send to my mum for approval :)

Just wanted to record the fact that I cycled 55 miles with my brother on Saturday.  It was an important milestone to reach.  I've been so bummed out about cycling (what am I, suddenly American?  When do I ever say 'bummed out'?!) lately, because, let's face it, it's pretty hard work.  It's difficult to get up the motivation to go out and do two hours of solid exercise after tea (especially when you're inherently lazy, as I am).  So I'm very, very proud of myself for breaking the 50 marker.  Not only breaking it, but doing 5 miles extra as well :)  Terry asked if I could've done five more and made it to 60; instinctively, I said 'no way'.  But when I thought about it, and forced the panic to die down, I supposed that I could've managed five more.  What's five miles when you've already done 50?  Not much, less than half an hour.

So, cycling is going quite well.  I'm realising that I still have plenty of my week left even if I cycle three times.  And three times is what I need to do to make those bigger rides possible - I found this week that tackling that 50 miler was made easier (not easy) because I'd already done seventy miles over the week.  I suppose I might say that I can feel myself getting fitter!  Never thought this would happen, did not think that I had it in me to get fit at all.  But now I'm eager to do more, to do bigger distances, and to push myself as much as I possibly can.  I'm determined to do the big challenge now, the coast-to-coast-to-coast in just two days.  I will have to be fit enough to do 170 miles followed by 170 miles!  I can do it.  I now know that I can.  I'm not sure why, but breaking the back of the 50 miler also broke down a psychological barrier, I think.  I'm sure I'll hit walls again, but it's good to know that I can get over them now.  I hit a small wall at the weekend, and started off the ride in a bad mood and expecting to have a bad ride.  I got over it.  Now I know that I can, hopefully I always will be able to.

And my goodness, it feels amazing: to look down at the bike computer (which Terry has just given me as an early Christmas present - I don't like getting early Christmas presents, but I like this one) and see that I'm doing 23mph on the flat, and keeping up 16/17/18mph going uphill, and over 30mph downhill.  It's brilliant!  Very, very exhilerating.  And then there's the added bonus of being outside in such glorious surroundings - we really do live in a very beautiful place.  Soon I'll be cycling to the Lake District, and that will just be a joy.  This weekend I suppose I did cycle to the edge of the Lakes - Kendal, is kind of the gateway to the Lakes.  I'd like to get to Windermere next, and have my lunch overlooking the lake at Bowness.  This is living!

And you know what else is living?  Writing my book.  So I'd best crack on :)

Have a nice day, whatever you're doing.  I'm spending the rest of my day being smug at my awesomeness!  ;P

Sandside, which we cycled through last week, on a beautiful frosty morning.
It was stunning.  I needed a panoramic lens; didn't have one.

Friday, 11 November 2011

This is when I'm the happiest :)

Every now and again this happens.  It's brilliant.  And each time I think 'I'm keeping hold of this, this is forever this time'.  It's my motivation.  I'm rather tired at the moment, on account of it being term-time and busy and backwards-and-forwardsy, cycling as much as I can, and taking on new crafty projects.  And it always seems that the more things I add to my day the more motivated I feel.  It's an odd thing.

This is what I am doing (you know I like bulleted lists, and I have now learned that, generally, they do not have closing punctuation!):

  • Writing some new chapters for Faerie, which are coming along very nicely, and which I am pleased with
  • Writing some outlines and snippets for The Death of Tom Rawlinson, which has come to a little impasse, and which I am trying to work through
  • Reading, and enjoying the freedom of having more than one book on the go at once!  Reading 'A Shabby Genteel Story' by Thackeray, rereading Twilight, and trying to finish The Gormenghast Trilogy, which has become a bit boring on account of its being published posthumously despite never having been finished by the author (I'm being kind there - it's actually boring because the story's moved away from the castle, and it was the castle and its inhabitants that I loved - without them the story is very flat)
  • Cycling - this week I have done 60 miles already, with another 20 planned for this evening, and 50 tomorrow; I will have done 130 miles by the end of the week, which is a little ridiculous, but bloody brilliant: very, very proud of myself (haven't done it yet though)
  • Crocheting, beading, cross-stitching and knitting: four projects on the go: crocheting a blanket for my bed, and to go over my legs to make me look like an old lady when I'm sitting in front of the telly of an evening, working on ... the scarf that I am also knitting for myself, with wool that I could not resist; cross-stitching a simply gorgeous new Christmas and wintry kit, all Victorian and stunning (quite a big and complicated one); beading new jewellery things, which I will probably never really wear, but which I make anyway because I love making beady things
  • Diarying and blogging: I have now set up my desk with my printers ready to go and my computer in an easy-to-use position, and all my reference books and inspirational books to hand; my cutey little Polaroid printers are brilliant for getting pictures off the computer and into a diary right quick - digital camera we love, do we not?  But wasn't it good when we had actual photographs to look at and thumb through?  I miss that.  Printing photos is a bit of a pain in the bum, but it's the way it is now, and I'd like to get on with it
This is the Polaroid Pogo, with Z(ero)Ink.  Love it.  I have a black one and a red one.  Why do I need two?  Well, I don't really, but my excuse is that if I'm doing a lot of printing, it's good to use two because they do heat up A LOT.

I think there are some other things that I'm doing as well, but I can't remember what they are.  And there's playing with the kids as well, and homework and all those fun things.  (Actually, homework is good fun at the moment, because Thomas and James are both very motivated just now - James has discovered that he's good at drawing and he now loves it, though he hated it a few weeks ago.  Thomas has been spurred on to practise drawing as much as possible so that James can't catch up to him and be better!  Thomas is enjoying life in Mr Hendra's class VERY much, and is learning maths properly for the first time.  Both boys are getting very good at writing and reading, and I just could not be prouder mummy right now.  They're amazing.  I'm so excited about their futures.  Mind you, at the same time I'm desperately trying to encourage them to play with as many of their toys as possible and as often as possible because, bloody hell, already Thomas is saying that he doesn't really want to play as much as he used to and that if he doesn't get any toys for Christmas he's not really bothered!  Nooooo!  Not yet, I'm not ready for them to start getting serious and mature yet!

So that's a little update of me.  I'm enjoying life this week, whilst at the same time, wallowing in a little self-loathing for being rather a lazy sod.  I've written here this list of things that I'm doing in my spare time, but I don't actually achieve very much, and do duck out of actually getting down to some hard graft with the writing in particular, in favour of ... writing a blog entry!  I'm such a slacker, really I am.

Now I'm off to collect Matthew from playschool.  What shall I do with him this afternoon?  I did promise that we'd bake some bread (in the bread-maker - didn't I say I was lazy?), so maybe we'll go and get ingredients for that.  Banana and walnut bread anyone?

Tuesday, 25 October 2011


So, it's probably about time I blogged again.

So right, let me summarise the last two months, since we were on holiday, in easy to read bullet points:

  • did some proofreading assignments
  • did a little bit of rubbish writing
  • did some good cycling - some longish distances, and one very difficult climb
  • spent a lot of nice time with the boys, including doing some really good homework
  • experienced single-mumming and rather liked it
  • spent a lot of time procrastinating, yet again
So nothing out of the ordinary, all the usual stuff, with the added extra of cycling.  I actually haven't done as much cycling as I should have done, on account of two bad colds and a bad back.  Can't cycle with either of those.  Bit of a bummer, as I'm getting a little behind with my training.  I'm supposed to have done a 50-miler by the end of October, which is in six days.  Fortunately, I have a beautiful new trainer for use in the home - phew!  I plan to stick the kids in bed early on Saturday night and cycle my way through two or three films and get my 50 miles done that way.  I stick my bike on this thing that lifts up my back wheel, pop my front wheel on a stationary stand, whack a DVD in my laptop and off I go, cycling in my kitchen, with snacks and drinks on hand :)  I don't have to stop, can cycle on and on.  It's brilliant.  But I have only used it once so far.  Really I need to get using it, to keep my fitness up when babysitters are scarce and the weather is rubbish.  It's all very well braving the gales and the torrents, but if they just serve to get us wet and cold without becoming any fitter, then I think we may as well cycle indoors!  There's a goal in sight - albeit eight or nine months away - and I haven't got time to enjoy the scenery, I just have to get mega fit.

This is interesting, as I'm the fattest I've ever been in my life, and had never imagined that there might come a time in my fat life when I might actually feel like getting fit - never mind mega fit.  But I'm quite enjoying it, and am already fitter than I was when I did my first cycle.  I can now sustain a speed of 18mph for quite some time on the flat.  I am now only ten or twenty seconds behind Terry on the bigger hills, rather than thirty or forty as I was at the beginning of my training.  It's like Rocky!  Getting stronger... 

Ah, thought I might be tempted to go on about cycling.  Didn't really want to as I suspect that it might be quite boring to read about.  But it's going to be a big part of my life next year.  I just hope I've still got time for writing as well - I do love cycling, but I hate that it needs to take up so much time.  It's not just the cycle itself, it's the fact that you have to warm down when you get home, have a shower and then eat because you're starving afterwards.  Then you get really sleepy and don't feel like doing anything for the rest of the day or the evening.  I'm very often tired the day afterwards as well.  Maybe I'm doing something wrong though, because I thought exercise was supposed to energise one, no?  Perhaps that happens when you get much fitter.  Perhaps that will happen when I get rid of my jelly belly.

I am also now working on a different novel.  I was switching between two projects, alternately hating and loving each one.  My mum asked me to look at the one I started in January again, the one that I did for the NaNoWriMo January project.  I did look at it, and I loved it.  I'd put it aside thinking that I'd never look at it again, it had gone very bad and I thought it had no potential at all.  But when I reread the first 20-30,000 words I saw that it was good :)  There's a lot to work with, lots of possible threads to follow, lots of really good characters, already quite well drawn and easy to visualise.  I've decided to work on that for a while.  It's not like anything I've ever written - but mind you, everything I try is new because I've not been writing for all that long.  But anyway, this new project is going to be good fun, as the story's just ridiculous.  It's quite funny, quite farcical, a bit like a Carry On story, a bit like a St. Trinian's, a bit like Terry Pratchett, and a bit like Thackeray (I'm now reading some Thackeray, because I bought quite a lot of his work when we were in Alnwick - see my hub on the subject of Secondhand Book Shops) which author I love more than any, ever; he is my definite favourite.  I am now a collector, of a particular set of Thackeray's works - very beautiful they are, and possibly a little bit rare (I don't really know whether they are, but I've just done a little search about for them and could only find a couple on ebay that were in dreadful condition - mine are in beautiful condition, especially considering that they're nearly a hundred years old :) )

Well, I think that'll do.  I've no pictures to share with you, because I haven't used my camera since we were in Alnwick.  I must start taking photos again.  There are lots of things that I must start doing again, lazy so-and-so that I am.


P.S. Forgot - we have two new cats, Bellatrix Lestrange and Narcissa Malfoy; surprising how many people don't know where those names come from.  My girls :)  They're gorgeous.  I have no photos of them, because my phone camera is rubbish and the cats won't keep still enough, and Bellatrix is completely black which seems to make her invisible on photos.

Tuesday, 23 August 2011

Alnwick, Bamburgh, Beal, Ulgham and Warkworth

Places in the North-East that we have visited over the past week and a bit.  We've been having a really marvellous time, but today the energy has run out a little.  There are only so many days out one can have before one burns out.  So today we are still sitting in the house at lunch time.  No castles today, no beaches, no gift shops.  Actually, that's not true, because we're going out for a walk around the town of Alnwick this afternoon.  The town is two streets away from the house we're staying in, 'the lady's house'.  I wish I did actually live here.  It's beautiful.  Beautiful aesthetically, but also beautiful because beautiful people live here and beautiful people holiday here, and the whole place just feels good, feels nice, feels pleasant.  It's idyllic really, and now that I think about it I cannot remember how it happened that I decided to book a holiday here last year.  I remember trawling through websites of cottages, but cannot remember why I looked at this part of the world.  Perhaps it was on a recommendation.  Anyway, I'm glad that I did.  I will live here one day.  I don't know if it will be soon, or if it will be in a couple of decades' time, if it will be with my family or if it will be alone, but I will live here one day.

I have pretty much no photos to share at this time, because all of them are on Kev's computer because his Apple has a card slot and mine does not, and I didn't bring my lead.  I have only this one, from Bamburgh beach, which I managed to pinch from Facebook, where Kev left it.  This is me in the pit that Thomas asked me to dig - this is only a half-dug pit, we managed to make it quite a lot deeper, and reached the water table and turned the pit into a pool.  But the boys soon filled it in again, because they are destructive (I love my boys, but I do not like their destructive sides).

Oh, now that I see this picture again I can see that the water is just visible at the bottom.  This is as deep as it got.  Funny how this angle of this photo makes the pit seem much shallower than it actually was.  From another angle you can see that the pit is almost as deep as I am tall.  When the boys were in it the top came above their heads.  Matthew made himself some steps to get out :)

We're expecting some rain, so our planned trip to Bamburgh beach tomorrow may be cancelled.  I would have liked to have had one more beach day, since the beaches here are so much nicer than the 'beaches' at Morecambe, but if we can't, we can't, and we'll have to do something else.  No matter.  We'll be back :)

Ahhhhhh, sigh of deep contentment.  I just wish we could stay for an extra week.

More photos next week, when I get home to my lead.

Monday, 1 August 2011

Not my usual Monday morning

Usually, on a Monday morning I'm full of beans, and looking forward to a good week, and bursting with ideas and creativity.  Not today.  Today I am boring.  Today I have no energy, and I'm annoying myself.  What I should have done is got up early, piled us all in the car, and taken us off to the Lakes for a good walk.  But I didn't.  I just didn't do anything.  We watched the final Harry Potter DVD in preparation for watching the proper last film at the cinema this week, and then the boys tumbled out into the garden and played in the rain.  They're still there now, though the rain has stopped, much to their disappointment.

I have done nothing.  Well, I have done boring stuff, such as the washing up, making lunch, and folding some clean washing.  Now I have itchy hands.  I'm not allergic to washing up liquid, no, I just need to do some writing.  It's been a good month since I wrote anything worth showing to anyone, and I do start to feel a bit down when I haven't produced anything good for as long as that.

The solution is clear, as it always is: I must make the most of my evenings.  When I produce good writing of an evening, my days are always better, and I always have more patience with the kiddy-winks, and I always feel more motivated to play with them.  I must start tonight.  I must get something written.  I will do it.

Though I'm a little worried that I haven't got time in my life for writing, and cycling as well.


That was me, giving myself a slap.  I know better than to say things like that.  How ridiculous - of course I've got time for cycling and writing.

In fact, I could do some writing now, since the boys are happily playing in the garden, and actually do not want me to play with them - who could blame them, when my face alternately looks like this:

zoned out,

clinically depressed,

pathetically mourning the loss of a dear pet rat,

discovering the pair of dirty socks stuffed down the side of the couch,

noticing that someone has folded the towels incorrectly.

I'm only looking like this very occasionally:

a little bit demented, on discovering the chocolate hidden at the back of the cupboard 
(it's past its use-by-date, but we're not fussy when it comes to chocolate).

Aren't you, reader, in luck today?  You've been given the rare treat of seeing me sans hair products!  What a blinkin' state I look!  An uncanny resemblance to Cliff Richard c. 1963.

Wednesday, 27 July 2011

More sketching

About half way through with my sketch now.  Didn't get chance to work on it today, though was itching to pick it up and have a scribble.  

I am actually itching to do something creative for a longer period of time than ten minutes without being interrupted.  But this is the way it is in the holidays when you have three young children (or any number of children - I'm sure it's the same with one as it is with three).  It wouldn't be fair of me to expect to have lots of time to myself, so I resign myself to the fact that I won't get much done for six weeks.  No problem really.  I do get twitchy hands though - I'm dying to sit with a coffee and do a bit of writing for a couple of hours.  Too tired in the evenings though.

Instead, the holidays are a time to do other things that we might not really get chance to do at any other time.  Cloud watching is a good thing that we've discovered this week.  The clouds were amazing yesterday (we didn't see them today as we were ridiculously lazy and stayed in all day!), and the boys were fantastic at spotting different shapes and animals and fantastical things in them.  James was particularly imaginative, and he saw things that I would never have thought of, such as bird skeletons and wolf eyes!  I took a couple of pictures of the clouds.

Maybe if the weather is nice tomorrow we'll get to lie in the garden and look at clouds properly.  Oh, it's a very hard life, he he! :D

Monday, 25 July 2011


We've had a lovely day today.  The boys have been great - heavily influenced by the lovely, and well-behaved kids that they played with on our camping weekend I think.  It was so nice not to be breaking up the fights and bickering, which is what I've been doing a lot lately.  I think that nice weather that allows them to stay out in the garden all day really helps.  Oliver was in in the afternoon, so I didn't see much of them for a couple of hours in the afternoon, so chatted with my dad for a while and then decided to find something to sketch.  It's not easy to find time to write in the holidays, I don't like to sit in front of the computer for a long time when the boys are all home with me.  But I'm finding that I need to find some kind of creative outlet so as not to start getting grumpy.  I can't write much over the next few weeks, but I can sketch.  I can do this because the boys like to spend a lot of time drawing and writing: Thomas is still producing work at a rate of knots, and the work is becoming more detailed and more mature; Matthew usually joins him once he's finished whichever bit of mischief he's been working on; James doesn't draw as much, but when he does he creates masterpieces with no effort whatsoever.  I'm thrilled to bits that they can all draw so well - they may not use art to make a living (although they may, I don't know, of course), but it's nice that they each have a good eye, and the ability to see the world in colour and form.  

Anyway, this is how far I got with my sketch today.  It's a small section from a photograph of King's Circus in Bath.  I'll show you it again when it's finished.  I'm quite pleased with it.  It's not perfect, but it's amazing how easy architecture is to draw.  I'm really enjoying it.  I've been wanting to sketch for a long time, but I just can't do people at all, I'm terrible.  So I'm pleased that I've found something that's within my capabilities!  I'd like to try to complete a sketchbook of drawings of buildings - but you should know me by now: I never stick to one thing, and rarely finish anything!  Though saying that, I do feel as though I'm settling down now, finding a bit of a niche, and being comfortable exactly where I am, and doing exactly what I'm doing.  That's nice :)

King's Circus, Bath.

Monday, 11 July 2011

Just keep going...

It's not a lot, but it's something, and it leads to more things, and before you know it that's everything on the list, and a new list of more things can be made, and you can start all over again with a brand new thing.  Easy really, you know?

I was sitting about this morning, having palpitations about all my little writing jobs that I wanted to get through, and I spent ten minutes staring at a page that contained the beginning few paragraphs of a hub that I could not really be bothered to spend time on right then (ironically, it was a hub about positivity, the ability to move on, and the will to keep motivated!).  Sometimes the task that you've set yourself just isn't going to work if you're not into it at that precise moment, and there's very little you can do about that.  And then you have to just have a look at all your notebooks, and do a mental check of all your tasks, and decide which one takes your fancy.  So I started on a letter; actually I started on finishing a letter that I began a few weeks ago.  And that's all it takes really: starting something, anything, breaks the stalemate and allows you to begin again (strictly speaking, I don't think that a stalemate can be broken, but it's just a little metaphor to illustrate my point).  A letter, or a diary can just remind you how to write if you'd forgotten.  I forget all the time, or my words just can't be bothered to come out.  So if I started scribbling down any old thing it's like a warm-up for my brain.  The writing muscles get a little stretch, and they're ready to go.  I still didn't work on the hub that I wanted to finish, but I did write a blog entry for my other blog, 'From Austen to Woolf', so it turned out to be quite a good morning.  I don't think I wrote a particularly good review of Inkheart, but at least I wrote it.

This leaves me with an evening to go through some proofreading notes, and to possibly get on with a little bit of my novel.  I'm well on with preparing the story, and have a good solid synopsis now, so I can really just sit down and write it.  I'm happier with it now than I've ever been, and I'm quite itching to get the first draft done.  I think it's going to be good.  Whether it will be sellable, I have no idea, but I don't really care.  I just want it to be good enough for me to be pleased with it.  I doubt a publisher will touch it because it's probably not original enough.  But I have to write it anyway.  And in any case, I've lots of ideas for other stories, both fantasy and literary, so I'll not be dismayed if I finish my masterpiece and no-one wants it.  My kids will enjoy it :)

I tell you what though, this no-telly thing in the evenings is brilliant.  I'm not missing watching the telly at all.  We watch a very little bit each week, maybe one or two hours, but that's it.  I don't have any programmes that I regularly watch, I just stick the telly on if I'm in the mood for just doing nothing, and see what's on.  Usually I'll resort to Dave and watch a bit of comedy because there's sod all else on.  Or there might be a documentary that grabs me.  But you can keep all of the CSI whatever-they-ares.  I'm sure they're great and all, but I can't be bothered!

Just killing a bit of time now, while I wait for it to be 5o'clock.  Err, think I'll go and finish that letter then.  Ta-ta.

Here is a blog that I love:  Kristin Cashore, This is My Secret.


Tuesday, 14 June 2011

Cor, I'm ace today!

That might have just been my most productive day, ever!  It was good, and now I am quite tired, but good tired.

Let me just quickly brag about all the things I've achieved today:

  1. Getting up early enough to let the boys cycle to school (them cycling means me walking and pushing Matthew in the pram of course, as Matthew can't do the distance quickly enough - we think it's about a mile from our house to the school gate).
  2. Walking all the way back home, without getting sweaty!
  3. Cleaning our hellishly messy living room, which took four hours (the mess was a year's worth of Thomas's doodlings and writings - there were great piles of papers lying around - he's creative and that's wonderful, but I think it's about time I taught him to tidy up after himself).  Very hard work, I am great.
  4. Cooking a healthy and nutritious hardly-any-fat-at-all toasted sandwich for me and Matthew, which we ate with salad, whilst sitting outside in the healthy fresh air.
  5. Having much fun talking and talking with Matthew, as he pottered about and helped with the tidying or played with some freshly found lost toys that I had just rooted out of a mountainous pile of stuff.
  6. Walking back to school to collect the big boys.  The sun had come out now, and it was too hot for walking to school in jeans - had I known the sun would come out, I would have put my shorts on.
  7. Sitting down to do homework with Thomas (only bad thing today: lost patience with poor Thomas, because he's stubborn about maths homework; must remember that losing patience does not help Thomas to learn maths, and also that Thomas gets half of his stubbornness from me!) and did manage to teach him one or two useful things.  Thomas left the table smiling :)
  8. Cooking very healthy and nutritious meal of tuna steaks, with very special olive oil and dill/chervil/parsley dressing with prawns, and jacket potatoes with sour cream, and crunchy mange tout.  Now that was very special.  Kev missed it because he had to go out with work people - poor Kev.  
  9. Dancing with the boys, when some very funky sixties jazz tune came on the radio.  We danced like loonies, which is one of our favourite things to do.  We always like to leave the blinds open in the living room when we dance, just to make sure that the neighbours can see us and know that we are loonies.
  10. Putting the boys to bed, and although starting to get rather tired, still persevering and doing the washing up!  How's about that for motivation?!  I usually leave it until the morning when I'm this tired :)
  11. Being a very clever girl, and doing my second, very difficult, proofreading assignment from start to finish.  (I have just finished it now, and although it's very difficult to say, I think I have done quite well.  I'm sure I haven't spotted every mistake, and there will probably be things that I've marked up incorrectly, but I can't expect to get full marks.  But I do have a feeling that I've done quite well.  I seemed to spot a bit of everything that I've been asked to learn so far, and I believe that I have made sure that I have not made the same mistakes as in the first assignment.  But I've got a couple or three weeks to wait until I find out my marks.)
  12. Oh, and another little achievement - writing a blog entry about my day :)
Here is a low quality picture of the high quality tuna that I cooked for tea this evening (which the boys loved, and devoured!):

Mmmm :)

Monday, 6 June 2011

Back to a nice routine.

I'm not usually all that keen on sending the kiddie-winkles back to school after the holidays because I miss them.  But this time, I was very happy to have the house to myself again.  We didn't have a bad half-term, but I did shout more than usual: my babes were tired all week, and all they wanted to do was to stay at home and play with their toys, and in the garden.  I indulged them, because I had no money to take them anywhere anyway!  Well, we could have gone to the beach for free, but the weather, as you all know of course, was not great for the beach for most of the week.  I offered to take them to the park, but they were just content to stay at home.  I did drag them out to Holly Farm one afternoon, and we did have a lovely time, as we always do.  And there were a couple of parties.  So all three of our outings involved soft play areas.  Not my usual preferred school holiday activity, but there we are.  To be honest, I was quite bored, and boring, throughout the week.  One Easter holiday, a couple of years ago, I wrote out a list of activities and we ticked them off as we'd done them, and that worked perfectly - we had the best school holiday, like, ever!  But since then I've not bothered with the list, and I should've done.  I will do the list in the Summer holiday (I'd better start saving up now though, as not much on the list was completely free).

I think I also found this half-term to be quite boring because the boys were sometimes at their friend Oliver's house.  He lives in the house behind us, and we've removed a fence panel so that they can come and go as they please.  Usually they're at Oliver's in nice weather, because Oliver has a trampoline!  And even when they're at our house, they're up in the bedroom, and I'm left out!  I want to play!  I've been discarded, for a younger friend.  Hmph!  Wish we'd never removed that fence panel!  I'm jealous of a child!

That's enough exclamation marks!

I've come up with a plan though: I've bought some inspiration - yes, you can buy inspiration now; actually you can buy just about anything if you have a computer and a paypal account - I have bought a pack of Usborne 'Games to Play on Holiday' cards.  And I'm going to lure my children back into our garden with promises of fun and hilarity.  Who needs a trampoline??  Not we.

These activity cards are brill.  Lots of the games only need you and your body, and the rest only require household items that most of us have in the junk drawer.  We're not waiting until the holidays come around again though, no, no, no; we're going to try out some games at the weekend.  It'll probably rain, but that's alright - we can do some puddle jumping instead.  Or, we have a fairly big space in our dining room, we can play some games inside.

Now, I am going to have a lie down, because I think I am coming down with a chest infection!  Hopefully, if I'm nice to it, it will go away very quickly (can't see my mum when any of us have germs - she ends up in hospital when we give her bugs, poor mummy).

I'll just sort of tail off at the end of this post then...  dum de dum...  bye then...

Friday, 3 June 2011

Sunshine. That's nice. Now go away.

I'm not good with hot weather (yeah, yeah, I know, this isn't even really hot - but much hotter than 20ºc (68ºf) and I start to melt, become very grumpy and headachey, and am generally pathetic).  I hate being outside in unshady sun.  Thank goodness we don't get very much up here.  That makes me happy, the thought that the scorchiness never lasts :)  I'm supposed to be outside and playing with my kids, but I just end up lying in the shade somewhere and asking to be allowed back in the house.

This is what I think of when it's above 20ºc:

That is all I have the energy for today.

I am supposed to get on with the next unit of my proofreading course this evening.  I will do that, as long as it's not still scorching hot.  My brain is sweating.

Incidentally, in my car is said that it's 27ºc, which is considerably more than 20ºc, so I'm not being soooooo totally pathetic.

Friday, 27 May 2011

Plodding along, as usual :)

Well hello there!  I'm busy.  Just popped on to say that really.  Always got something to do, always got something to write, got many books to read, many magazines to pore over, quite a bit of studying to do, and some decisions to make.  All good, all fun, all invigorating, and all exciting (for me anyway, quite boring for everybody else).

Still not doing very well at getting all the things done that I need to do though - but at least I have got out of the habit of sticking the telly on and switching to 'Dave' and watching repeats of comedy panel shows!  That was silly.  My life might have been full of humour, but it wasn't moving anywhere.  You can't stay in Daveland for ever; after a few weeks you've seen all of the repeats and then you're watching the re-repeats, and that's just stupid.


Here is what I'm listening to this morning:

'Sanctus' by Karl Jenkins.  Make what you will of that :)

Tuesday, 10 May 2011

Things we wish we had more time to do...

My mum pointed me in the direction of this website today:, the website of the artist, Laura Laine.  She draws girls with beautiful hair.  Some of her pieces are used to advertise perfumes and designer bags and so on.  But I'm not much interested in that, I just thought that the hair was amazing.


And it reminded me that I have been wanting to sketch more.  I'm one of these people who has lots of plans, lots of things in the pipeline, lots of projects on the go.  Some of them might be on the go for years without me ever actually devoting any time to them.  My mum is very good at getting lots of things done, and is always starting a new book for one thing or another.  Sometimes I think she fills them!  I can actually do lots of things a little bit: I can draw, I can paint, I can play several instruments, I can sing, I can act, I can write, I can cook, I can dance, I can sew, I can knit, I can crochet.  I can do all of these things a little bit.  But sometimes I think that that is not the way I want to be; I want to be very good at a couple of those things.  Trouble is that I'm fickle, you see.  I practise one instrument for a few weeks, and then I get bored, and then another instrument looks far more appealing, so I switch.  Drawing is one that I want to be able to do without putting in the required effort.  Drawing, for me, takes such a long time, and I am not patient enough to put in the hours.  Same with painting, of course.

Hmm, I don't know if there is much I can do about this.  I think I am Elizabeth Bennett, and will probably never be properly accomplished: 'I am not a great reader, and take pleasure in many things'.  I think this is alright, I think it's allowed.

Actually, writing is the only thing I've ever stuck at for such a long period of time.  Ah, but that does not really signify much, since I have not finished anything!

Maybe one day I will be patient and disciplined enough to finish something.  Until that time I will just have to be satisfied with my flighty self.

Oh, once I did finish a whole big cross-stitch.  And I finished a baby cardigan too.  Don't think I've ever finished anything else though.  Very often I don't even finish my thoughts, or sentenc....

Sunday, 8 May 2011


Oh bloody hell!  This arrived today (yes, delivered on a Sunday - weird):

This is what I've just paid £395 for!  Yikes!  It's a folder, with some sheets of paper in it, and it came with the Oxford A-Z of Grammar and Punctuation 'for free'.  Now, it doesn't look much for the money, (and actually this is not the whole thing - there are some more sheets of paper to come!) but I'm hoping that this little unassuming bit of thing is going to be the gateway to the good life for me.  Oh yes.  Well, that may be overstating its potential (and mine) a little.  We'll see.  But I am going to learn to be a proofreader.  Hopefully this little course with The Publishing Training Centre at Book House will lead to some more courses, and some paid proofreading, and some mentoring (for me, not by me) and then an accreditation if I'm good enough.  Knowing me though, I'll be bored after a bit and decide that I do want to be an astronaut after all.

Book House is a well-respected provider of this kind of training.  I wrote an email to Penguin Books a couple of weeks ago, and asked for some advice on the best proofreading training, and they recommended Book House.  In fact, they said that they only use proofreaders from Book House.  I then felt proud of myself for being able to sort the wheat from the chaff in a Google search, because I had picked out Book House as the best course provider myself, before the Penguin lady had even got back in touch with me.  Aren't I clever?!  Well.  Lots of people, professional and not, advised me against using Chapterhouse - I was wary of this company as soon as I saw its website.  It offered the cheapest course - but that rang alarm bells for me.  Cheapest so often means lowest quality.  And this was confirmed for me when someone my mum knows advised me that Chapterhouse passes almost everyone who takes the course, even if they're not very good, which is why publishing houses don't tend to use freelancers who have a Chapterhouse certificate.

So that'll all be quite exciting and interesting.  I've got work to do again!  Weird feeling.  But I'm looking forward to it.  I shall start my reading tomorrow.

But when will I write?  Oh.  Well, I'll just have to see how this week goes.  I'll read some of this material and see how quickly I think I'm going to take it in.  If there is no room for writing for a few weeks then so be it; I'll just have to tough it out.

Oh, does anyone want a copy of the Oxford A-Z of Grammar and Punctuation?  I bought myself a copy of this very same book a few months ago, when I enrolled on the MA in English with the OU (which I might have to defer for a year, but we'll see), so I now have two!  It must be a sign that this is what I'm supposed to do next!  Though it can't be, because I don't believe in signs.  Must just be a coincidence then.

Far too many exclamation marks in my post today!  I'm supposed to be learning to be a proper writer, and a proper writer should never need to use an exclamation mark!

Well, there should have been lots of other things for me to write about today, such as the Scout Festival, and risotto, and the beach, and the rain and thunder storm (storm, ha!), and something else that I've forgotten.  But I've got to go to bed and get some sleep now.  Busy few weeks ahead.

Night all.

Sunday, 1 May 2011


Sorry.  Lethargy has descended.  No idea why.  Hoping to shake it off tomorrow.  Night.  Off to bed to read.  See you on the other side... of the lethargy.

The Yawning Man, from Tom Thumb

And while I'm on YouTube, you can have this from the same film :)  G'night.


Saturday, 16 April 2011

Lazy days

We have done nothing very much so far in this long-awaited Easter holiday.  But a good few days of relaxation, playing at home, and being allowed to indulge in TV and DVDs was just what the boys needed to recharge their batteries.  We have had some very tetchy, and easily irritated little boys in this house over the past few weeks - strange that when their behaviour is at its worst, my patience grows.  Hmm.  Must be because it's easier to spot when they're tired, and know that they're not being naughty on purpose.  Most of the time they are very, very good, and they don't like to think that they've let me down, bless them (they never do let me down, but it doesn't hurt to pretend to be a little disappointed now and then, just to keep them on their toes ;) ).

So we've only been to Dalton Zoo (South Lakes Wild Animal Park) which was quite a bargain because kids are free for the whole of April.  Further bargainous because I told the boys before we left home that I had no spare money, so they did not ask for any souvenirs from the gift shop (I'll remember that one from now on!)

This is what we saw at Dalton:

One day we'd all like to adopt some of these protected animals.  We always feel very sad when we visit this conservation park, because they do tell you the very grave truth about the seriousness of the threat of extinction to so many species.  It's also not very nice to see these majestic animals caged.  But we still go, because it's one of our favourite places - we know this park does as much as it can to protect animals in the wild.  Personally, I feel very humbled when I'm there.

We have had a little fresh air, but not much.  This is what fresh air looked like today, on the Barton Road fields near my mum:

Although Thomas seems to have a sour face here, this is not actually the case - he is just squinting against the sun :)  He actually loves spending time on the field.

Thomas is doing some investigating here - he found a ladybird.

Matthew's looking for ladybirds too.

James would love to have a dog of his own - he will be allowed to have one, when he leaves home.

Super wholesome and refreshing afternoon, out walking me mam's dog :)  The boys don't love much more than getting out for a run around in a field, with a ball and a dog to chase after it.  I love watching them run up and down, showing us their skills, their aikido rolls and their acrobatics.  They're fabulous little boys.  Exploring copses, climbing little trees, getting squelchy in the mud, paddling in the beck, drying their feet by running on the grass.  What I wouldn't give to actually be one of my boys, because they are having the time of their lives doing nothing much - they're not having a bad childhood at all :)  

I'm having a short break tomorrow, being one of my Days Off.  I'll be doing some serious writing jobs, and getting stuck into a couple of projects that I'm hoping to get somewhere with.  After that it will be the second week of the holidays, and I am looking forward to some good weather, to some picnics perhaps, and some more fresh air, hopefully a little further afield (stocking up on travel sickness tablets!).

Life is good :)

Sunday, 10 April 2011


Now, I don't know about you, but I think that the views we saw today were pretty special.  This is Morecambe Bay, which might get a bit of a bad press sometimes, but seen from this angle hasn't got much wrong with it (if you don't look too far round to the left - err, south - and see the power station!)

To be honest, I don't think I really need to say anything - I'll just let the pictures speak for themselves.  We had a good day today.

The boys are exhausted - excellent :)  The kind of exhaustion that only a brilliant day full of exercise and good playing can bring.  A birthday party in the morning, followed by a walk at Silverdale, followed by a surprise play with a little friend who lives in the house directly behind ours (Kev lifted out a fence panel and they were all able to go back and forth between the gardens - they're so excited and want to do this every day).  I hope that we can go out to play every day in these next two weeks - if I were the praying kind, I would pray for dry and warm days every day; but since I'm not the praying kind I will just be hopeful instead :)   Kev will be back at work, but since when has that ever stopped me from taking the kids out to nice - free - places??  One of our days out will be a walk along the cycle track to Sainsburys to buy strawberries to eat at the Castle :)  Simplicity itself, but one of our favourite things to do on warm days.

I'm a little stunned that some beautiful weather has arrived - but I shouldn't really be surprised, since the Easter Holidays usually are kind to us.  (Although I hear that it might actually rain tomorrow).

Friday, 8 April 2011


I have become a limericist this evening :)  One of my fellow hubbers told me that he believed I would be able to write poetry, and I told him that I wouldn't, that my poetry is awful.  He basically told me to have more faith in myself, so I said I'd give it a go.  I decided that I would start with limericks because I thought they would suit my sense of humour, and I also like the rhythm.  I don't think limericks have to be humorous, but this is where I'm going with them just now.  It might be nice to do some more sentimental ones, or some scary ones, or some sad ones, or some cute ones later on, or whatever.

Would you like to see one?  Now, don't get too excited, because it's not hilarious!  This was my first one.  I've only done one more, but I can see already that I'm going to like them very much.

Here it is:

Miss Wordsmith she wanted to rhyme,
She saw people rhyme all the time,
She stuttered and tripped,
Some pancakes she flipped,
Then she gave up and rested, sublime!


There then ensued a little spat, between the Professor, who had challenged me to take up the poetry bait, and another well respected hubber called Sligobay.  I decided to respond to their disagreement over the praising of my first bit of poetry with another limerick, thus:

The Professor and Sligo at odds,
Thought Linda, 'they are silly sods,
To fight and inflame,
When my poetry's so lame'.
But really they're all writing Gods!

Only I made a terrible mistake and used the word 'enflame', which of course is not a real word!   I will have to apologise and repost it with the correct word, 'inflame'.

So that's what I'm trying my hand at just now.  It's fun.  It's not going to get me famous though!  Hmmm.

I think I would also like to try haiku, but I'll have to read some of those first to see what they're about.

I don't think I'll ever be
though, eh?  Not with these rhymes!

Friday, 1 April 2011


I'm not sure why so many things in this world have to be fought for, but there you are, that's how it is and we have to get on with it.

Today the bullying situation at Thomas's school seems to have come to a head, and I am now left with no choice but to follow the school's complaints procedure.  The bullying has been relentless this school year, and although Thomas is being brave and dealing with it very well, we feel it's high time the school pulled its finger out and started taking this issue seriously.  They've been aware of this particular bully's behaviour for three years - now am I being over-sensitive, or is three year's too long for a bullying problem to persist?!
The bully does not only target Thomas, he targets several other children as well.  I have been talking to other parents and we are all of the same mind: the bullying must stop now.

The kind of bullying that we are dealing with is mostly psychological, the intimidation kind of bullying, the threatening behaviour and language, the bully trying to encourage others to do his bullying for him.  It's the secretive kind of bullying, the kind that's particularly difficult for the victim to prove.  I have looked at the school's policy on bullying, and to be perfectly honest, it's rather pathetic.  This particular school favours a softly, softly approach to the bully, and prefers not to use a blame and punishment approach.  Well, this approach clearly is not working AT ALL, since my son is still being bullied.  I have a right to expect the bullying to be stopped immediately, and for the school to ensure that it is prevented from now on.

So, I have made an appointment to meet with the Head Teacher, and Kev will be with me, and at least two other parents.  I asked for the appointment in writing so that I could put down a list of points that we want to discuss.  I copied the letter to the Chair of Governors, and I have to copy it to the Local Education Authority as well.  So now it will be a case of seeing what progress we can make at each stage.  I have various options, and steps to investigate a little further - the extremest of which would be looking into moving my boys to a different school: I do not want to do this, but if in a few weeks I am banging my head against this same brick wall, it might have to be considered and threatened.  There are two other Excellent schools in the area, and my children could be thriving at either of those, instead of just getting by at this one.

Sorry, I don't usually write blog posts like this, but I just needed to get this information out of my head so that I can relax for the rest of the evening and weekend.
I'm sure there will be updates as we go along!

A picture of the contents of my head right now?

Friday, 25 March 2011

Oh dear. I'm thick.

Well, that has all just completely baffled me.

I have just spent half and hour looking into freelance writing online.  I am so ignorant, and so very naive, and I know nothing.  SEO?  I don't know what this is.  Well, I mean I looked it up on Wikipedia, and it stands for Search Engine Optimization, but it all looked very complicated and I didn't know where to start properly finding out how to learn about SEO.  I mean, I'm sure that if some people can learn how to promote themselves as freelance writers that I could also learn the same skills.  But I wonder whether it's all beyond me really, whether I'm nowhere near as clever as I thought I was, and that I do not have the right kind of brain - is a business brain needed?  Because if it is then I'm not sure I have the right kind of brain.  I know I can write some nice things sometimes, but a little literary talent doesn't seem to be enough - apparently you need to be eSavvy now too.

I could do with someone to sit down and tell me where to start, because it's all rather overwhelming.  And now I am aware that I am whining.  But it's difficult to find determination when the thing I want to be determined about is as tough to get hold of as smoke.

More thinking and searching I suppose.  Perhaps I need to find some energy first and then research this when my head is clearer.

I'm floundering at the moment, hopping about from project to project, unable to find proper direction and focus.  It's very annoying.  I'm annoying myself.  I wish I could get a grip and get on with things.  What I could do with is a mentor really.


Wednesday, 23 March 2011

What a difference a little sunshineyness makes.  I think we're all feeling the love today, are we not?  Smiley faces in the playground, smiley faces on the street, neighbours standing outside their gates chatting, people cleaning their cars and singing along to the radio.  The first day of Spring might not have been today, but certainly this feels like the real beginning.  Ohhhhhh, I have never looked forward to warm weather so much as this year.  It's been a Winter of illness, and not just for my mum (though, of course, she has had the worst).  It's been a Winter of the most colds, snotty noses, ear infections, bronchitises, tonsilitises and laryngitises that I have known.  Not that I'm complaining, because poorliness is always the best excuse to have cuddly times on the sofa and plenty of DVDs.  But I am ready to brush away some cobwebs this Spring.

I've got my novel-writing head on now; I'm going to do it; this is it (as I say every Spring!)  I've found my principle characters, and I know what they look like so they can't give me the slip this time.  I've found my plot, and I've found my baddie, and I've found my baddie's motivation, and I've found a few sub plots that might be worth exploring, I've also firmly decided on the rules for magic in my world.  All that remains is to write the bloody thing.  Five chapters down, roughly twenty-five to go!

Oh good grief!  How to spoil a person's productive mood!  I said that my neighbours were singing along to the radio whilst cleaning their cars?  Well, my next-door-but-one neighbour has just turned Blondie up full blast, and I am mightily vexed!!!  I cannot abide Blondie, so I am going to have to shut my window until it's over.

Monday, 21 March 2011


What's that all about then?  Are you lot suckers for a bit of negativity then, or what?  I post a negative blog entry, and like magic I get the highest number of views in 24 hours that I've ever had.  Well, if only I'd known, that all it would take was a bit of a moan, I'd have had a bit of a moan ages ago.   My, oh my.  I'm stunned.


Well, you'll be sad to know that I am not negative today.  I am back to my usual happy and annoyingly cheery self.  My lime green Docs are doing their job, and tomorrow I may wear them with my skinny jeans tucked in!  I'm just missing the black leather bomber jacket, and the green hair (though I'm hopefully getting the green hair in a few weeks).

Spring today, and my Docs match the buds that are exploding out everywhere :)

Happy Spring :D

Sunday, 20 March 2011


Something seems to have gone wrong in my brain.  I came home from my day off yesterday, and as soon as I stepped through the front door I actually felt the foul mood enter my soul.  I snapped at Kev as soon as I saw him, and the poor guy hadn't done anything wrong.  I went to bed in a foul mood, and it was still there when I got up.  I have spent the morning so far screaming at the kids, and they haven't done anything wrong.  Instead of making the most of the day with them I have launched myself into some deep cleaning, pulling sofas out and hoovering under them and behind them and inside them!  I have blamed the kids for my bad mood, and I have told them that I am sick of them making so much mess for me to clean up every day.  They are looking bewildered.

So I thought I'd come and write it all down, see if I could exorcise it.

Oh my goodness!  I am actually feeling a little bit better because my children have just come up to see where I am, and each one of them hugged me and told me that they love me!!!  Why would they do that, when I'm so evil?  They need to be kept away from me for their own sanity and safety, because I'm unstable today.  But still they love me.  That's special, that is.

I'm not used to feeling so bad.  I wonder what I can do to eradicate the feeling completely.  My kids have made the anger disappear, but now I am still feeling guilt and a bit of sadness.  I will go and find something fun to do with Thomas, James and Matthew and maybe that will work.  I know that I don't need to poison myself with guilt, because I'm just having a bad day and I haven't done it on purpose.  I am now going to forgive myself and try to move on.

Ommmmmmmmmm.  There, forgiven.

I think I am feeling a build up of lots of little niggly things, and my pot of crappiness has filled up to the top and overflowed a bit.  I think I have some issues and problems to deal with - obviously the best thing to do is deal with them, rather than sweep them under the carpet.  I will make a list this evening, and will probably feel refreshed after that.

Is this my first negative post, ever?  Well, it had to happen at some point.  Let's hope it's the last for a long time.  I don't like feeling negative, it doesn't suit me, and it definitely does not suit my lime green Docs.


Friday, 18 March 2011

Merry Christmas everyone!

I finally got around to getting my last Christmas present this morning.  Kev gave me a cute little home-made voucher for a pair of Doc Marten's for Christmas, and I only just cashed it in.

My docs are this colour.

Actually, they're not.  This photo doesn't get the colour across properly.  They're much more luminous!  Not to everyone's taste by any means, but that's good.  I wouldn't want everyone wearing the same shoes as me, because then I wouldn't be so special :D

It was between these and a pair of shiny pink ones.  The shiny pink ones were on offer, but I knew I would love the green more in the long run.  Maybe I'll save up and get the pink ones too!  Of course, they probably won't be on offer any more, once I've managed to save up.

This still doesn't show you the real colour.  How strange.  Well, you'll just have to come and see them for yourself.  I'm sure you'll hate them, but that's alright.

It's going to be marvellous to not get wet feet when it rains now :)  I've been walking around in holey shoes for months, and my toes have been freezing all Winter!

Day Off tomorrow :D :D :D :D :D   I am not to be disturbed.  I am doing some major editing on my manuscript, and hope to have made some good progress with it by the end of the day.  If you see me in Starbucks you must keep the niceties to a minimum and then bugger off :D

Have a good weekend all.

Sunday, 6 March 2011

Wonders of the Universe

I have just finished watching Wonders of the Universe, presented by the inimitable Professor Brian Cox. As per usual, as per my viewing of Wonders of the Solar System, my mind has been blown, and I have done some good crying at the beauty and amazingness of everything.  Staggering stuff, and humbling indeed.  The bit that made me blub in the end was when he showed us the photo taken from Voyager 1, in 1990, of our planet from billions of kilometres out in space.  Ohhhhh, we are so tiny, and so alone.  The first photo here shows Earth, circled.  That's us, in 1990, shot through by a sunbeam.  Can you see yourself?  I think I can see our house, and I can tell its ours because our car's parked on the drive.

These others are just stunning pictures taken by Hubble.  Enjoy :)

Nothing like some sense from Prof Brian to give life some perspective and meaning.  I always feel uplifted by the things he says.