Friday, 4 December 2020


 Good morning, everyone.  Yesterday's weather was absolutely horrible after a dry start.  Rain, rain and more rain as it got colder and colder.  The forecast round here is for sleet.  Sleet - yuck!  Right now. it's too dark to tell but it is certainly wet and icy cold.  Brrr.

Yesterday went well (if one can say that about a trip to the dentist).

The chat with Chris was great.  It will be nice when we can get back to face to face coffee or even the occasional lunch, but Messenger or Zoom are good substitutes.

Then it was the Dreaded Dentist.  I say that but, in fact, the young dentist I have is really lovely, great with nervous clients and very reassuring.  I didn't actually have the filling done yesterday, she prepped the other tooth for the crown and that took all the time.  Things have changed significantly since the last time I needed something like that.  No mouthful of plasticene-like stuff that has to be forced off your teeth after it has set, just a clicky thing that, presumably, takes measurements and it linked to a computer.  Clever stuff.
As the tooth is 'dead' anyway, no nerve, I didn't need an injection and that also helped.  I hate those needles in my mouth, wimp that I am!
So next week is another implant visit and the following week it's back to Francesca for the crown and the filling (with needles, sadly).

That's not the end of the treatment - there's one more yucky tooth for which I have decided to have another implant as I cannot bear the thought of a plate (which I would need) after my experience of one over most of this year.  I'm glad I had one, it has been infinitely preferable to a four tooth gap each time I smile, but not needing it any more will be the best Christmas present ever.

Oh, dear, I am such a whiney baby about dental stuff!

Early evening it was back to face to face Slimming World and that was very nice indeed.  Sadly, the yucky weather put some people off going but seeing friends again was super.  I even lost a bit which, after Christmas Tree Day, was amazing!

Today, thankfully, I have nothing that will take me outside except for trips to the shed.  In the morning, I don my governor's hat for a meeting with the teacher in charge of assessment, to go over some data.  It sounds dreary but, in fact, it can be interesting.  I'm very relived I'm not the other side of it any more though!

Come the afternoon, the cleaners are here and it's a downstairs day so I will disappear up, change my sheets and do some clearing up in the guest room before, probably, having a snooze.  I was up disgusting early this morning after a night of broken naps.  No idea why and it doesn't matter; I am just thankful I can catch up as needed.

For today's musical blogmas calendar, I've gone back to the wonderful King's College Choir for something beautiful and baroque,  For Unto Us a Child is Born from Handel's Messiah.

For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.
Isaiah 9:6

Beautiful words, beautiful music, beautiful performance.  I couldn't wish for more.

Thursday, 3 December 2020


 Good morning, everyone.  It's a dry start to the day as far as I can tell and it doesn't feel terribly chilly either, although there's still potential for the temperature to drop - the coldest hour is just before the dawn, to coin a phrase.

I was going to move my dressmaking mannequin out of sight over December until Beth suggested this.

The Spirit of Christmas Jumpers!!

It will stay up until I want to wear the jumper and no longer!!!  It'll give the cleaners a chuckle anyway.

In the end, the morning chat with Val yesterday was short and sweet.  She'd forgotten and was about to go out to pick something up.  Ah well, never mind, we've rescheduled for next Wednesday instead, seeing as we can't actually get head to head yet.

Starting the Zoom chat with Dad. we had the same problem as usual in that he could see and hear me but I could only hear him.  However, we finally worked out what it is at last and it is connected to what Eileen mentioned about a web cam not being used for two functions at the same time (thank you so much).  Dad is turning his web cam on somehow - no idea how he does that as I can't with mine - in preparation before accepting my invite so, presumably, Zoom thinks it is already in use.  We closed the chat, I invited again and hey presto, no problems.  Phew; at least now we know.  We sorted out the cause of another minor problem too.  Dad's 'screen' has a flicker which has proven to be his strip light.  It's not bad and we can live with it but it was irritating to not know where it was coming from. 
It was nice to see him and chat and all seems to be well his end

Personal training was good.  Lindsey is in the process of moving house (what a time, eh!!) so the room wasn't completely set up as usual, but everything we needed was there and she worked me hard (hard for me, anyway) as usual.  I enjoyed both the session and the chat.

Today is comparatively busy.  It starts with an online chat with Chris over the road.  Then I have a visit to the dentist, not for the implants (that's next week) but for a filling and starting work on a crown.  Not fun but necessary and I will be so glad when it is all done.
Next week it is the implant appointment and the week after that is finishing the crown.

Finally, Slimming World is face to face again so I will be off out for that, mask at the ready.

I should sleep well!

For todays' musical blogmas calendar, I chose a bright, lively, sing-along, well known number that has become a Christmas 'classic'.  I do like the Mel and Kim version but finally decided to go with Brenda Lee.

Wednesday, 2 December 2020


Good morning.
Yesterday turned out to be a beautiful day, weather wise.  Yes, it was cold, but it was sunny and breezy and I got some washing almost dried on the line.  I know - simple things please simple minds but this made me happy.

I did washing and ironing, plenty of sorting out, especially the upright freezer, and then got on with ,my cross stitching while I caught up on recordings on the telly.

Today is two chats and a workout!

First of all, I have an online chat booked with Val.  Val is an old friend.  I originally met her at church and then, when I moved in here, she was the first to welcome me to my new home with a pot plant and some cheery chat.  It was much needed as it was just after the breakup when I had to leave the family home (for very good reasons, nothing sinister) and she has been a friend ever since.

Then it's personal training.  Now that lockdown has lifted, we are back into tier 2 around here and Lindsey has received the go ahead to start her personal training sessions again.  She gave me the choice of that or online and I did consider online.  However, she has more and better equipment in her little gym and it will be nice to go out.

Yesterday, I realised that both Dad and I had totally forgot about our Monday chat so we're having it this afternoon instead.  

Today's Christmas music; in comparison and contrast to yesterday's music, here's another version of the same carol, this time performed by Enya.  It sends shivers up and down my spine; her voice is just so beautiful.

Have a good day and still be safe.  Just because lockdown has lifted, it doesn't mean we can all go crazy!
What are your plans for today?

Tuesday, 1 December 2020


 Good morning!  So here we are - the first Day of December and now I feel the decorations are legitimate.  I've been into the Jacquie Lawson calendar and now there's a Christmas tree in the village square and it's beautifully decorated.

Later on I will light my advent candle, being very careful as the first sections burn down very quickly, the shape being a square based pyramid.

Yesterday turned out well.  Jeff came, worked and left again leaving a much neater garden.  Beth slept in and came down just before lunch, leaving soon after we had eaten.  The Thermione demo was good fun, I learnt several new things and enjoyed the fruits of my cooking for dinner with four more portions destined for the freezer as soon as I can work up the energy to get them out there.

Today is blank in the diary so I think it is a day for pottering, for writing lists, for dealing with an overflowing clothes basket and generally organising stuff a bit more.  Hopefully, by the end of the day, I will feel that I've achieved in some small way.  Fingers crossed, anyway.

For the last two years or so, I have celebrated the run up to Christmas Day by posting YouTube clips of my favourite music, carols and songs and this year is no exception.  Many of them will be very much the same as previous years because - well, favourites are favourites, aren't they.

I'm kicking off with the old favourite, O come, O Come Emmanuel, sung by the great choir of King's College, Cambridge.  Enjoy.

O come, O come, Emmanuel,
And ransom captive Israel,
That mourns in lonely exile here,
Until the Son of God appear.
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel.

Monday, 30 November 2020


 Good morning, everyone.  It's a dull and gloomy start to the day round here.  Misty and damp, not nearly cold enough for a frost but too cold and too damp to hang the washing out.  Maybe it will clear later on, fingers crossed.

Well, we have had our Christmas Tree Day and it was lovely.
We started off with lunch - lasagne, chips and salad (the salad makes it healthy, right?) and then tested one of the little Christmas puds I made.  It was very, very good indeed.  Lighter than the usual kind both in texture and colour but with that Christmas spice vibe and a gentle citrus tang about it.  I'm really looking forward to having some more.
Getting the tree up and decorated was great fun.  I dearly love real trees but have a beautiful artificial one for a number of reasons.  Quite apart from the shedding needles that can get in the eye (that happened to me once; it was horrible and the devil to get out), dealing with a real tree is a nuisance, they are comparatively expensive over the years, given that my last tree lasted, oh, it must have been well over twenty years with me and then, two years ago, it went to a charity that uses it in their shop and I'm expecting this current one, new last year, will see me out (or until I can't manage it any more)

After a while we had a break and our first G&T.  It helps to take a break and then take a critical look over the tree to see where the gaps are.  At that point it looked like this - photo taken on Beth's phone.  Explosion in the Christmas tree factory!

After a bit more work and some general clearing up . . .

. . . and that's pretty much how it will stay now in that corner until twelfth night.  You can see that the duo of Guardians of the Christmas Tree (yes, we're bonkers!!) have become a trio - Beth's old ted has joined the honourable pair (sitting in the middle).  In front of each is an owl holding a letter to spell out J O Y - most appropriate!

The rest of the day passed as planned.  A buffet tea and we watched The Snowman and Father Christmas (I thought I also had The Snowdog, but it seems not) followed by the Polar Express and then The Muppets' Christmas Carol.  

All in all, it's been great.

Today should be quieter.  Jeff has just finished doing his fortnightly tidy up and general maintenance in the garden, bless him, Beth is still fast asleep upstairs, I've cleared everything from yesterday (too tired to do it last night) and there's washing in the machine.
This afternoon, I have my post purchase 'demo' with Leonie where we make something in tandem.  I've chosen meatballs which will show me how the blade cover and the slow cooker functions work so guess what I am having for dinner tonight!  I wouldn't usually slow cook meatballs and will be interested to see if it makes any difference.

So that's my day.  How about you?  xx

Sunday, 29 November 2020


 Good morning, everyone.

Yesterday was lovely in a rather untidy and messy way.  I did my early morning shop and got what I needed for the week so that was all done and dusted.  Then I set to and made a number of trips to the garage, empty handed on the way there and arms full on the way back to the house.  First of all the gopak table which is now in a corner with a suitable tablecloth over it.  Then various bags followed by three huge plastic storage boxes and, finally, the tree.  I wondered if I was going to be able to manage the tree - it is surprisingly heavy and the bag it's in is big.  However, with some pushing and pulling and general puffing and panting, I got it in and now it's just sitting there in another corner, still in the bag.

I got the candles out and onto the sideboard they always go on.  I got out the Christmas knits - Mary Christmas, the Victorian mice, various snowmen and festively garbed little teddies that all sit on top of the radiator beside the tree with the Guardians of the Christmas Tree (my old teddy and my brother's ditto) underneath them.  

It all took a surprisingly long time but I'm glad I did it today as we'd not have time to do it all today.

Beth is turning up at lunch time and, after lunch, we will set to and decorate, accompanied by a bottle and some mince pies.  When that's done we will eat more naughty nibbles and watch Christmas movies starting with The Snowman, The Snow dog and Father Christmas.  It should be a lovely day.

Saturday, 28 November 2020


 Morning, everyone.  Sorry I'm a bit late but I did an early morning shop to avoid any crowds.  They I needed to put things away and after that I was so hungry I had my breakfast and I've only just remembered!  Ooops.

Yesterday was quite a productive day.  I made some cranberry sauce in Thermione after a bit of a panic when I thought I didn't have any frozen cranberries (they were hiding) and that is now in the freezer in two containers.  Then I rather fancied making some caramelised red onion chutney as Leonie (my Thermomix 'consultant') said it was a great recipe.  And so it was - I'm definitely making more (did I say this yesterday?) for gifts.

The chat with Jackie was really pleasant, as was coffee with Beth.  There's a M&S food hall fairly close to hers so I seized the opportunity to pop in there and pick up a few things.  They do a nice range of sweets that are OK for vegetarians/vegans so I got some for Christmas so Beth can dip into the bowls just like the rest of us.

That was about it really.  In the evening I stitched and watched telly and got all tearful at THAT moment in 'An Extra Slice'.  Very aaaawwwww, wasn't it?

Today, I've done my shop and really the rest of the day  is going to be spent moving things from garage to house and sorting bits and bobs out because - just in case I haven't mentioned it enough already - tomorrow is Christmas Tree Day.  Woo hoo!

Right, well, having remembered to write and post this, I will love you and leave you and get on with stuff.  Hoping your day will be as pleasant as I expect mine to be.  Take care and be safe.  xx