Sunday, 30 November 2008
Saturday, 29 November 2008
The "No-heel" high heel
Then we have the backwards heel
Although these are quite clever - a stiletto that coverts into a flattie
And then we come to the WTF!? category
Give me a pair of walking boots any day.
Friday, 28 November 2008
Dress is lounge suit.
Well that's the men sorted then. You know exactly what to wear. What us women wear is a whole other kettle of fishies. "Lounge suit" for women is not so easy. Over do it and you end up looking like mutton. Under do it and the other female guests glare down their noses at you like you're Cinderella.
I don't have the kind of wardrobe that contains the appropriate clothing for any given occasion. I can't just reach in and pick out the perfect outfit. Nope, I end up with clothes strewn around the bedroom because nothing will do. Which is why I shall be wearing pretty much what I wore last year.
But whilst I had the dressing-up box out last night, I decided to have some fun and try on all my evening dresses. Well, I say all. Two of them to be precise. I slid into my dresses, lvery chuffed that they still fitted, slipped on my heels and paraded around to a very unappreciative audience of two lurchers and a greyhound. Who all got terribly excited because they thought putting on shoes meant time for a walk. I really must teach them the difference between walking boots and heels.
Wednesday, 26 November 2008
You remember on Monday I was bemoaning the fact that I was struggling to read a book? Well, last night I started tidying up my book shelves. I moved a pile of books from the bedroom and onto the shelves and, as I turned around, two books fell off the shelf. One was a copy of Schott's Original Miscellany, which is really just a browsing book, and the other was a book called The Rebel Angels by Robertson Davies.
I can honestly say that I have never seen this latter book on my bookshelves before. Obviously it must have been there otherwise it couldn't have fallen off but I have absolutely no idea where it came from. Whilst I would struggle to name every book on the shelves, I thought I had a pretty good idea what was there, particularly as when I moved here 2 years ago there was a major clear-out of books and much soul-searching as to what would stay and what would go. This book was published in 1989 so it's not new and judging by its worn edges, it has been read before.
So I picked it up, started reading it.....and it's brilliant and I'm hooked.
Spooky or what?
Tuesday, 25 November 2008
I mean, I do like to look reasonably tidy but comfort is the over-riding factor and I'm fortunate that jeans and sweatshirts are the order of dress at work. I am clean (before y'all start "ewww"ing at me!) and I shower every day. But I don't wear make-up and my hair tends to dry itself into a bit of a curly mop these days and usually gets pulled up into a pony-tail.
But I have to say, much as I love Autumn, this weather is playing havoc with my skin and hair. The cold, the frost, the icy rain and the central heating are turning my skin into crepe paper. Red crepe paper at that. And it hurts! My skin stings it's so dry, and this is despite me slathering on the moisturiser three times a day.
And my hair!? Oh yes, we are really doing the dry straw static thing.
Such a fetching look.
I am trying to keep hydrated by drinking litres of water. Unfortunately your body has a way of saying "enough!" by then ensuring that you keep running to the loo every 1/2 hour and your colleagues are beginning to wonder what on earth is wrong with you.
You just can't win!
Monday, 24 November 2008
Books and reading are a lifeblood for me. Books take me away from my life and into another world. Somewhere I can escape to and become lost in, if only for 10 minutes before I go to sleep. Reading relaxes me and helps me switch off from the day.
But over the last month or so I have picked up and started five books and then put them down again because nothing is gripping me. I have at least a dozen books sitting here waiting to be read and one I am at least half way through, and I think it is that book that is the cause of the problem. It is the second in a very long series and half way through I reached an impasse. The characters aren't reaching out to me and the storyline is slow to develop. I've reached a particularly difficult chapter where the characters are just doing something really silly. I know if I can just get past this chapter, it will all start to fall into place and I will once again become gripped by it. But everytime I try I end up throwing the book down after a few lines.
I'm tired, irritable and out of sorts and I'm sure it's partly because instead of reading and relaxing before I go to sleep, I'm doing crosswords and Suduko puzzles, stimulating my brain which is resulting in a bad night's sleep.
If anyone knows how to get me out of this rut, I'd be grateful for your advice. Even if it's just "get a grip, woman, there are more important problems to worry about"!
Sunday, 23 November 2008
I am like a child at Christmas when it comes to snow. I just love it!
Shame it then started to rain and it all disappeared within an hour or two.
Saturday, 22 November 2008
I was still up early and spent an hour or so getting Greyhound Gap's banking ready. Took The Lurchers and The Greyhound for a stroll in the sunshine, although it was damn cold out there and I was very glad of my happy hat that my friend Niki knitted for me! Then headed into town, got the banking sorted, did a little bit of shopping and headed home, locked the front door and batoned down the hatches. I lit the fire, curled up on the sofa with the newspapers and stayed there until 3pm when we all went out for another lovely walk.
Sometimes you just need a day to unwind and relax a little.
Friday, 21 November 2008
I will be so glad when Blog365 is over. We're in November and the end didn't seem so far away. But today? The thought of blogging every day for the next seven weeks is a little overbearing
So what shall I blog about today. I think I will tell you about the thought that has just crossed my mind.
I belong to several internet forums but there are two that I post on more often than any other. In fact, I am a Moderator on both of them. One is frequented mainly, but not exclusively, by women. The other is frequented mainly, but not exclusively, by men.
I'll give you one guess as to which requires the most moderating........
And they call women bitches? Let me tell you ladies, the men have us beat hands down on that one. I've not seen so many toys thrown out of so many prams as I have on that mainly male forum.
Thursday, 20 November 2008
Wednesday, 19 November 2008
I woke up with a bit of a headache - I suspect from too much chocolate over the last few days...if you haven't tried Cadbury's Crunchie Nuggets, I suggest you do. They are to die for. And addictive. They look like little left over bits of Crunchie bar covered in chocolate and I suspect some bright spark at Cadburys saw these little left over bits and a lightbulb went on in their head. Whoever they are, they deserve a knighthood!
Anyway, I digress, I woke up with a bit of a headache and took a couple of Nurofen. Normally that does the trick but for some reason yesterday, I took a major turn for the worse and headed deep into space cadet territory. I have no idea if it was the tablets or the migraine taking its course but I felt dreadful. I ended up taking the afternoon off sick and sleeping it off. I felt better but the headache didn't really go until sometime in the early hours of this morning.
Firstly, a big huge thank you to Lesley Rigby who sent me a dvd on how to make curtains! Lesley, you are a lovely person and thank you!
So I set off to the fabric shop on Saturday morning...only to find that the fabric shop is no more. It's now a huge Lidl supermarket instead. Ain't that a sign of the times? I headed into the nearest town thinking that the local Department Store might have a fabric department. They did, but on the way to it I had to walk through the curtain department and there, right in front of me, were the perfect curtains. A deep maroon colour, that matched my bedroom curtains, fully lined and, the best bit...they were marked down by 50%!! What's a girl to do? She buys them, that's what she does. So for for £50 I had two pairs of curtains - one set for the doors and another for the office/dining room!
But Lesley, fear not, your DVD will still be very useful because I still have some more curtains to make in the Spring as I want to have a set of summer curtains for the doors as well.
Monday, 17 November 2008
Do you have a piece of jewelry or other item that holds great personal significance for you, and that you wear or keep with you every day? Show us a photo of your talisman, and tell us why it is so important to you.
Well, the easy answer to this is no, I don't.
I'm not big on jewellery and don't wear it very often - the only exception to that are my earrings, I have two holes in each ear with studs in one side and small hoops in the other; the other exception is a Celtic knot ring I wear on the fourth finger of my right hand. This was a 40th birthday present from the ex-Himself who (for those of you who know what's been going on and why he is an ex-Himself) was at pains to point out that this was just a ring and did not signify anything. In that respect, he is right, it did not signify anything in regard to our relationship.
Its significance to me is that it is made, at least partially, from Welsh gold . Welsh gold is very rare, very expensive and very exclusive - the wedding rings for the Royal family are traditionally made from pure Welsh gold - which is why mine is only partially made from it. In fact, the percentage of Welsh gold in it is probably miniscule but I don't care, it's a little bit of my heritage right there on my finger.
I do also have a couple of small pieces of jewllery that I don't think I have worn for a long, long time, but are special nonetheless.
This is a gold locket that was left to me by my great-grandmother
This is a silver locket that contains a lock of hair from my first step-father. He was a very special man and died from a heart attack when he was only 32 and I was just 11.
So that's my rather tame Fun Monday this week! Pop pver to Mariposa's to see who else is participating!
Sunday, 16 November 2008
Saturday, 15 November 2008
Damn but I am getting organised! I have another list of things to do this weekend...
1. Get sorry ass out of....oh wait, you remember that one from last week - DONE!
2. Walk hounds. - DONE
3. Measure front door, back door, hall shit tip cupboard door - DONE
4. Go and buy fabric – to make curtains! Oh yes, my sewing machine is going to see the light of day for the first time in more years than I can remember! - Ahh That will be a blog post in itself
5. Buy louvre doors for hall shit tip cupboard door. This might be fun because it's not a standard size door. FAILED!
6. Buy curtain poles, curtain hooks, and thingies for fixing to the wall (for those of you not in the know, "thingies" is a technical term) DONE
7. Buy a bolt for the office door which won't close....that's the door that won't close by the way, not that I want to buy a bolt that won't close. Because that would just be silly, right? DONE
8. Buy pole and hooks to hang toilet rolls. OK, this one might need explaining. I don't have a conventional toilet roll holder. I dislike conventional toilet roll holders. I have a long pole that sits under a shelf that holds about 6 toilet rolls. It's an ace system but the pole there at the moment only just fits, so when I undo one end and try to put the toilet rolls on, it always falls out and I have toilet rolls rolling around everywhere. I need a longer pole.
9. Come home and wonder what the heck I was thinking about when I decided to make my own curtains.
You may well hear the screams across the globe.
Then somewhere in there I have to:
Change the bed linen (DONE), throws on the sofa, wash the window blinds, and I still haven't got my chainsaw.
Friday, 14 November 2008
Tracy Lagondin grew up in Hawaii as a female. In her 20s, she decided she really wanted to be a he. So she started living as a man and went through the "gender reassignment" process and legally became a male.
EXCEPT... Ms Lagondin, or Mr Thomas Beattie as we should now call him, decided that at some point he would really like to give birth to a child so opted to keep her reproductive organs.
Now, herein lies the dilemma for me. If you're born a female and feel very strongly that you need to be a male (or vice versa), so much so that you go through the gender reassignment, then fine. Whatever makes you comfortable in your own skin is just fine and dandy by me. But, HOW can someone who is so desperate to be male that they go through the procedure, but still feel female enough that they want to give birth to a child (one has been born and a second is now on the way)?
Am I the only person to whom that just does not make any sense?
Thursday, 13 November 2008
Guys, please! Have a heart for your poor readers! We can't keep up!
Oh yeah, and next year, try signing up for Blog365!
No, wait, don't......Google Reader would definitely not cope!!
Apologies for the overload of exclamation marks in this post.
Wednesday, 12 November 2008
“I’m one of those people who believes you just can’t regret things in life. You have to feel confident that it was all part of the journey.”
Not overly original perhaps but it struck a chord with me nonetheless. It's something I need to take on board.
Tuesday, 11 November 2008
At 11am today, this blog is holding a minute's silence in rememberance of those who have lost their lives fighting for their country, and for us.
By Vicky Poxon (13)
For every red poppy
That grows in the field
Marks the bravery of men
That the battle did kill
For every soldier
That lay down his life
He left behind
A family, a life
For every red poppy
That sways in the breeze
Remember the men
Who died for our peace.
Monday, 10 November 2008
Since next Tuesday is Veterans Day, I thought it would be nice to salute our Veterans and show our appreciation. Photo requirement of something patriotic.
It's not called Veterans Day here in the UK but we do still remember those who lost their lives in the two world wars and, indeed, in any war. Yesterday the UK marked Remembrance Sunday with services held at war memorials across the country. On Tuesday we also hold a minute's silence at the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month.
I am too young to remember the World Wars but despite that, it is vitally important that we remember those that lost their lives for our freedom. I am old enough to remember the Falklands War and the invasion of Kuwait - those that lost their lives in those wars must also be remembered. And, regardless of what you think about the wars that are being fought now, whether our troops should be there or not, their lives, their bravery and their loyalty to their country must be equally honoured.
These are some photographs that I took at a local Remembrance Service two years ago. I thought long and hard about taking these photographs. These are men who fought in the Second World War and Remembrance Sunday is their day. Their day for remembering their fallen colleagues and what they themselves went through in that war. But taking these photographs was my way of honouring them, that the pain that showed openly on their faces was noted and remembered. They deserve to be remembered.
Sunday, 9 November 2008
Why can't Guy Fawkes "night" be just that anymore? Just one night?
Lurcher No.2 is a wreck, afraid to walk out of the door once it's dark. The Greyhound is just about holding it together. He's OK but when the bangs start he runs around wondering what the heck the noise is. He looks to me for reassurance and I ignore him, and the noise, and pretend there is nothing out of the ordinary. You can see his brain thinking that if I'm not bothered, it must all be OK then and he can go back to sleep. Until the next bang. Thankfully Lurcher No.1 doesn't give a monkey's whatsits and sleeps through it all.
My nerves are on edge because I need quiet. I need to hear nothing. Absolutely nothing. My senses are going into overload with all this auditory input and I long for silence. And sleep. I need an early night but with the fireworks going on until gone 11pm, I can't. The noise has to stay until they stop. And because the hounds won't go out into the garden for their last night pees, they're waking me up at least twice in the night.
I hate fireworks.
Saturday, 8 November 2008
Shame that I'm so crap at writing them then really.
But today, I have so much to do that a list is required. And in honour of the fact that I actually wrote a list, I'm sharing it with you.
Now aren't you glad you stopped by!?
So here goes
1. Get sorry ass out of bed - DONE
2. Get sorry ass away from the computer, out of jimjams and into clothes and get The Lurchers and The Greyhound out for a walk - DONE
3. Go to DIY store and buy chainsaw (that is on most people's list of Saturday chores isn't it?) - FAILED!! No-one has them on stock so will be trying again tomorrow.
4. Go to supermarket and nonchalantly swing chainsaw about - that should clear my way to the checkout (OK, OK, I'm joking!)
5. *ahem* Go to supermarket and get provisions - DONE
6. Go to Pets@Home for dog food, chicken food and hamster food. - DONE
7. Get provisions home and go to the office to pick up a Gator. I love these - if you've never driven one then add it to your to-do list. They are ace! - DONE
8. Load Gator up with logs and drive them home. - DONE
9. Move everything from under the lean-to into the recentely-vacated shed. - DONE
10. Move logs from Gator to lean-to. - DONE
11. Collect sapling trunks from where they've been dumped and return to the Cottage with them - DONE (and I accepted help with this one!)
12. Get out chainsaw and prepare to cut trunks into fire-size pieces. - FAILED (not being able to get the chainsaw stopped that one it its tracks)
13. Stop and read instructions for chainsaw.
14. Get back into Gator and go and collect wood chippings from where they've been dumped. Load into bags and return to the Cottage and spread chippings in chicken run.
15. Clean out chicken coop. - DONE
16. Sweep out the yard around the coop and the shed and tidy it up.
17. Rush back to DIY store to buy window locks. (If I remember to read this list on Saturday morning I might be able to skip this one because I will have remembered to get them when I buy the chainsaw - bugger, and I still forgot).
18. Walk The Lurchers and The Greyhound before it gets dark. DONE
19. Collapse in a heap. (Oh yeah, this one is really DONE!)
If I achieve all of this it will be a flippin' miracle.
Friday, 7 November 2008
Thursday, 6 November 2008
And this is one such thing for me......
Yes, dog tags. Go figure.
Of course, if you're serving in the armed forces then these are not silly and most definitely serve a purpose. But for me? Silly. But I want them nonetheless and quite by chance today I came across a site selling them. Stamped, apparently, by one of only two US Army dog tag stamping machines in the UK.
How can a girl resist?
So now I'm deciding what to have stamped on them and then they can be crossed off my list.
Wednesday, 5 November 2008
Well, yes, actually I probably do. Am I going to ask for that help?
Not on your sweet ass I'm not.
JoyT posted a really interesting blog yesterday about asking for help. She can't. Her husband does at the drop of a hat. Joy wants to know if the rest of us do. Or don't.
Rather than write an essay in Joy's comment box, I thought I'd try and sort this one out over here because this is a subject very close to my heart at the moment.
I have never been averse to asking for help. I've frequently had physical jobs in male-orientated environments (farming) and, whilst I've always pushed myself and done what I can, there have been times when I had to acknowledge my own limitations and ask for help. Though it pains me to say it, women are not always as physically strong as men, we're just not built that way – our strengths generally lie in other areas – but, as always, there are exceptions to that.
The ex-Himself was very good at doing stuff around the place – it's what he did for a living after all – and it was easier to ask him to do things. One of the reasons it was easier to ask him to do things was because if I tried to do things myself, there would be comments like "why are you doing it like that?" or "that won't work, let me do it" as the tools were taken out of my hands, or a wry smile and a shake of the head with "that" look. I gave up trying in the end, it wasn't worth getting worked up about.
The guys at work were also susceptible to a pathetic "girly" look and a plea for help. Getting them to do stuff for me was fun!
But since I've been on my own, I need to do things for myself. Because my cottage is owned by the company I work for, I can easily call on our Property Maintenance guy to do stuff for me, and my boss has said if I need anything just call in the Maintenance Team. But you know, these guys are busy already and I don't want to be seen to be getting special favours. When I mentioned I was going out to get a small chainsaw this weekend to cut my own logs for the fire, the boss gave me that despairing look and said "oh Angela.....you don't need to do that". Ditto when I go to collect the logs, "get the guys to help you" he always says to me. Why??
I need to do this stuff On. My. Own. I don't know if I have to prove something to other people or whether I have to prove something to myself. I'm guessing it's mostly the latter. It's not only an adjustment to single life but also a need to rebuild my confidence in my abilities after letting them sit and rust for so long. I may not be very good at doing some things and I'm learning a lot as I go along, but I get them done. The end result may not be pretty, but it's functional and does the job.
So, right now, I will not be asking for help. For anything. Even if it means cutting off my nose to spite my face.
Thank you very much for offering, it is appreciated, but I'm getting by on my own.
Tuesday, 4 November 2008
Just thought I'd share that with you.......
Monday, 3 November 2008
I'm relatively new to blogging, & I'm sure this has come up before, but I'd really like to know WHY you blog. Tell me how you got started or why you got started and why you keep it up. Plus there's a photo requirement: Post a picture of the one person/place/thing that most symbolizes the town or area where you live.
Why do I blog. That's a very good question. I started back in August 2004, yes, four years ago. Blimey, where does the time go? My blogging was a little intermittent to start with and I occasionally went months without posting. I think it started as a way of me being able to record the daily ins and outs of my life and to make sure I remembered the important things that happened - I have a terrible memory when it comes to dates.
I continue to blog because, somehow - probably through Fun Monday - I seem to have become a part of an incredible blog circle. The people who read my blog, at least those who comment anyway, are some of the most generous, warm-hearted and selfless people I have ever had the pleasure to interact with. They continue to read and comment here, and offer me incredible support, despite me being one of the rudest bloggers around because I just don't seem to have the time to get around to their blogs to comment - although I do read as many as I can.
Having people like that in your life, even if only in cyberspace, is precious.
Then there is the fact that late last year I was stupid enough to sign up to Blog365. WHich means exactly what it says - I will blog every day throughout 2008. It's been fun and made me focus on getting at least something onto my blog everyday, even if it's waffle, but let me tell you, it's stressful, and I won't be doing it next year!!
OK, so what symbolises where I live? There are two things. The first is this:
The Windmill on Wimbledon Common. It's historically important to the area and also a major feature and it's part of my job to help look after it, although I only play a minor role.
Secondly, and probably the thing that will be instantaneaously recognisable to you all, is of course the All England Lawn Tennis Club
The tennis courts are literally a mile or so away as the crow flies and, if the wind is blowing in the right direction, I can hear the cheering crowds from my garden.
Now head over to Bee Dancer and see who else is participating this week.
Sunday, 2 November 2008
I used to eat a lot of natural foods until I learned that most people die of natural causes.
Gardening Rule: When weeding, the best way to make sure you are removing a weed and not a valuable plant is to pull on it. If it comes out of the ground easily, it is a valuable plant.
The easiest way to find something lost around the house is to buy a replacement.
Never take life seriously Nobody gets out alive anyway.
There are two kinds of pedestrians: the quick and the dead.
Life is sexually transmitted.
Health is merely the slowest possible rate at which one can die.
The only difference between a rut and a grave is the depth.
Health nuts are going to feel stupid someday, lying in hospitals dying of nothing.
Have you noticed since everyone has a camcorder these days no one talks about seeing UFOs like they used to?
Whenever I feel blue, I start breathing again
All of us could take a lesson from the weather. It pays no attention to criticism.
In the 60s, people took acid to make the world weird. Now the world is weird and people take Prozac to make it normal
How is it one careless match can start a forest fire, but it takes a whole box to start a campfire?
Who was the first person to look at a cow and say, 'I think I'll squeeze these dangly things here, and drink whatever comes out?'
Who was the first person to say, 'See that chicken there? I'm gonna eat the next thing that comes outta its butt.
'Why is there a light in the fridge and not in the freezer?
If Jimmy cracks corn and no one cares, why is there a song about him?
If quizzes are quizzical, what are tests? (Think about it!)
Do illiterate people get the full effect of Alphabet Soup?
Did you ever notice that when you blow in a dog's face, he gets mad at you, but when you take him on a car ride, he sticks his head out the window?
Why doesn't glue stick to the inside of the bottle
Saturday, 1 November 2008
Not content with letting you quietly get on with things, it has to throw a big spanner in the works and completely mess you up all over again.
Why does it do that?