Sunday, 18 March 2018


Good morning, everyone!  What weather, eh?  Nothing bad but it snowed most of yesterday and when I drew the curtains it was still snowing.  It's stopped now and I guess it will be inconvenient rather than restricting but if we've had some, it will be a lot worse in other places.  Fortunately, 'they' reckon it will warm up again pretty quickly.
Poor old daffodils (taken yesterday morning).

Indoors was much better!

Given that the roads were clear, I drove along to Morrisons yesterday and got the few things I needed.  I also found Mullerlight yogurts at 30p each which is very good and treated myself to a DVD - the Paddington 2 film as I heard it is lovely and is guaranteed to have no naughty bits and certainly no nasty bits so suits me just fine.  I shall watch it this afternoon, I think, as it's too cold and nasty to go out.

I finished the snowdrops cross stitch and here it is.  There's a few errors which I won't point out but it's pretty.  Now I have to decide what to do with it.

I've started another one - much bigger this time.  Sorting out the silks was a bit of a brain-acher and I had to do it by the window but I think I've got it right now.  I did the old trick of punching holes in a bit of card to thread the silks through.
This is it (a scan of the picture that came with it).
I might cross stitch the house shape rather than use the frame that came with it.  Mounting it isn't going to be easy otherwise.

Sorting out some more cupboards in my bedroom, I found some things that I was so pleased about.
A decade or so ago I got down to more or less the weight I am now - still too much but getting there - and, as an encouragement, knitted a couple of jumpers.  One was in chunky with a knit-purl pattern similar to a Guernsey and the other was a proper Aran and they are both long (bum covering).
I can get them on but they are tight and anyway, something as chunky as that needs to be looser fitting but they are lovely, I remember how much I enjoyed making them all that time ago and, all being well, they will be absolutely perfect for next winter, being the sort of traditional thing that really doesn't date..
It feels like a gift - a treat from me to me.  :-)

Must dig out my patterns and maybe knit myself a few more things over the summer.

Today will be more or less the same.  Paddington to watch, knitting, crochet and sewing to be getting on with and some planning to do for next week.  Should be good!
If you have to go out, please take care and be safe.

Saturday, 17 March 2018


It's funny, this blogging things, isn't it?  The chances of ever meeting those whose blogs you read and follow are minimal but, over the days, weeks, comments and replies, you feel a liking, you engage with them, in a way you empathise.  There's definitely a friendly relationship going on there.  I'm sure some of you will know exactly what I mean.

And then it stops. 

Several months ago, Frugal Queen suddenly shut up shop and disappeared.  Now, I didn't really feel any sort of 'friendship' with Jane, it isn't something she really encouraged, but I enjoyed her some of her entries and admired the way she pulled her life together and helped others to do the same.

Now someone else has stopped blogging.  I don't know why and I'm certainly not nosey enough to ask around; that's her business and I am sure there are clear and important reason, but there's a great sense of loss in me at the moment.  S, whatever the reason, thanks for sharing your home and life, for all the advice, info, accounts, recipes, photos and everything else that made your blog such a delight to read each day. 

Be happy.  Have a good life.

I hope she reads this.


Good morning everyone! 
The so-called Beast from the East 2 has arrived although it's hardly roaring.  It's the usually slightly soggy snowfall that is less like a roar and more like a gentle miaouw really, settling on grass and roofs but not on the roads and pathways.  A bit unusual for mid March but it won't last as long (I hope) nor be as cold.  My boiler is still on, thankfully!

It was quite different yesterday, mild and sunny with a gentle breeze that dried my clothes nicely on the line.  I got two loads done which means the basket is now nearly empty!  I didn't get any ironing done so that's a task for this morning.

Lunch with a friend was really lovely.  Bless her, she brought with her some daffodils for me and now my downstairs looks very bright and spring-like.  I found a recipe for chicken thighs which turned out really nicely and was absolutely delicious.  I had to sub a few ingredients but it worked fine and I am very glad there's enough left over for my lunch today!

Here it is although I used orange marmalade, not having any lemon)

We had a good old chat and catch-up too.

I didn't get much more clearing out done yesterday so it is double dose today.  I must tackle the pile of books that seems to have grown beside my bed and then the mess on my so-called 'dressing table'.  I wonder - if I had a plant or two there would it stop me from dumping stuff?  Who knows!

Oh - and after sorting out an old swimming bag, I now have three more swimming costumes.  Who needs seven!  I've washed them but I think they will need to go into the charity pile as they are now too big (cheers).

Beth and I were going to take a trip to the allotment this morning, not to work but to develop our Plan of Action.  I was going to pick Beth up but, given that her road is narrow, on a hill and with parking both sides, we've decided to give it a miss.  Beth had the very unpleasant experience of losing control and sliding down backwards one icy day a few years ago and how she managed not to hit anything on the way down, she will never know.  Neither of us take any risks on that road now; it may be in town but it is a minor road and is never gritted - I doubt the gritting lorries could get down, in fact.
Maybe we can go tomorrow.

As the weather doesn't look exactly promising today (it's just started snowing harder, more like a snarl now), I think it will be heating turned up, windows closed and a warm snuggle under the fleece.  Stay warm and take care, whatever the weather down your way.

Friday, 16 March 2018


Good morning, everyone.  It's a nice, dry morning today but Baby Beast is definitely on the way according to the weather bods, so I expect it is chilly out there.  No frost though!

Yesterday ended up lazier than expected as tuition was cancelled.  Never mind, the planning will suit for next week instead.  I did a little bit of shopping as I have a friend for lunch today and the rest of the day was spent watching cookery telly, knitting and continuing to sort out the bedroom.

I have a really nice Cotswold Company shelving unit with wicker baskets in my bedroom and over the years it has not only collected plenty of rubbish, it's inches deep in dust.  WAS inches deep, I should say because yesterday I cleared the lot, threw loads out (who wants 'What's going on in Norfolk' dated over a decade ago?),  moved my many counted cross stitch kits to a better place (I have enough to last me the rest of my lifetime) and put some in my charity shop case, dusted everything down and shifted stuff around.  I want it to be properly used again and so it will.

Unfortunately, some stuff is just being shifted into the small spare room.  It's hardly used as a bedroom now and I have a few plans for it but even so, not a brilliant thing to do, is it?  I can't say I've de-cluttered just because the clutter is in an unused room, so there's a way to go yet.  I do wish I wasn't a hoarder < sigh >.

With my bedroom in mind, I looked online and ordered some fitted bedroom brochures.  I know more or less what I want and am prepared to take time and wait (and save) rather than act impulsively.  It doesn't matter if it takes two or three years - it will need to be a complete bedroom refit anyway, decorating and re-carpeting, with the changes I want to make so it gives me time to finalise my ideas.  With the changes I want to make, there will be the outside wall space for an air con unit (at the moment there's a fitted wardrobe in the way) so that's something else to consider seriously.  Time is my friend here!

Come the evening I opened one of my little cross stitch kits, the one I got from Anglesea Abbey called Snowdrops at Anglesea Abbey.  It's pretty, not too challenging and will look lovely, maybe on my bedroom wall.  I haven't done any counted cross stitching for ages, absolutely ages, so it was nice to get back to it.

I also found a whole stack of little Christmas cross stitches, finished apart from making up into cards.  I must have done them over a decade ago!  As I also found a whole pile of card mounts, guess what I will be doing in the next week or so.  I shall have to start doing 'real' Christmas cards again rather than virtual ones!

Today, though, I have a friend coming for lunch.  I have some chicken thighs and found a nice, simple recipe online so we will have that with salad and I might do her a jacket potato too.  Not for me as it won't work with the liver shrinking thingy but I really don't mind and won't feel deprived at all.

And, last of all (sorry this is so long) - another 3 lbs off.  Woo hoo!

Thursday, 15 March 2018


Good morning, everyone.  Sadly, it is chucking down with rain this morning, unlike the lovely bright morning yesterday when she sun shone and all was fair and lovely.  It feels chilly too!

Yesterday really was gorgeous.  Inspired by the sun, I got two loads of washing done, out on the line and dried and then, in the evening, ironed and put away.  I now know I have four swimming costumes I can use - goodness knows why four but there you are, four!

I bravely (yes, it was, it was very brave, as I am dreadful at getting rid of old things!) set to and tackled my clothes yesterday.  Out came all the tops, bottoms, jumpers, cardigans, etc, for a ruthless sort out.  By the end I was sneezing madly but now I have more hanging room, a suitcase full of stuff for the charity shop and a bin bag full of stuff for the Sally Army recycling bin.
I've always kept stuff before - a sort of 'in case' insurance, but this time there is no 'in case' scenario.  The weight that has gone won't be coming back.  In fact, more will be joining it and by the end of the summer most of what I kept will also need to be replaced.

I have another almost free day today so I shall make hay while the sun - er - doesn't shine and tackle some more dark corners in my bedroom furniture sandwiched round my daily River Cottage viewing!

I need my first coffee now so I will sign off and get the day started.  Have a good one.

Wednesday, 14 March 2018


Good morning, everyone.  It's a very lovely early morning with a faintly pink sky that looks encouraging for a fine day to come.  Here's hoping, because I gather there's another, shorter blast of cold air coming our way from the east again over this next weekend.  I do hope not but we will see if the beast has reproduced or not.

As expected, yesterday was a very pleasant day.  I got bits and bobs done, sorted out a few more of my old clothes, put some in the washing basket for refreshing (so now I have plenty of washing to be getting on with), cooked and dealt with one of the chickens and generally pottered around gently.  Just what I needed!

Today is perhaps a little busier but not too much so.  There's that washing to get done and in the afternoon I'm helping in Y1 before a spot of tuition and a nice, gentle evening.

My mini-daffs are looking lovely.  A very cheering sight after some dull and bleak times.

Have a lovely day!

Tuesday, 13 March 2018


Good morning, everyone.  After a very wet day yesterday, today looks more promising and just as well because Y1 are off to Marsh Farm today.  I did my washing yesterday but if today looks to continue fair, I will probably change my bedding and get that washed, dried outdoors (smells so much better when dried in the fresh air) and ironed.

Yesterday was a very busy day.  I drove home from my parents' home in the morning and it was a wet journey but there were precious few hold ups and every line I got into was moving at a fair old lick so that was good.

Unfortunately, as I went inside, case in hand, there was a most peculiar and not terribly pleasant smell.  Yes, I had forgotten to empty the bin and there was something fishy inside it so phew!
I sorted that out, got my weekend washing in, did my bit of planning and then popped off to school to do my voluntary duty.  After that it was tuition.  No time for lunch which wouldn't please Dr C one bit but tough, there just wasn't time.

For dinner, Diane, I made the soup you gave me the recipe for and it was absolutely delicious, many thanks.  I used orzo for the pasta and added some tomato puree and mmmmmmm . . .
I'll make that again, definitely.

Before I went to bed, I tried on a few more things from my wardrobe.  More now fits but most I really don't want to keep so there's a little pile for the charity shop.  I'm just doing a few things at a time, so will try a few more things on today.

The very nicest thing - one of 'my mums' (i.e. students' mums) emailed me to give me some very good news, something people have been working towards for a very long time.  I was so, so pleased, there might even have been a few tears of happiness this end of the modem.

Today, in absolute contrast, is a very easy day.  I have to pick up a prescription at some point, go to the charity shop, maybe change the bedding and there is some tuition later on but the day is gentle and spaced out and I feel really relaxed as I type.  Beth is round for dinner so I'm very much looking forward to that!

And my too-late planted daffodil bulbs are now showing above the soil.  You never know, maybe . . .