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?