Friday 30 November 2012

My month in numbers

When I see Julie's blog show up in my blog list at the end of the month I suddenly realise that it's time for me to do my own number count.  So a quick look on my phone tells me this:
MINUS TWO.  Yes, MINUS 2.  The temperature outside at this actual moment in time.  7.10pm in case you were wondering.  Minus two.  I don't like it when we get into minus figures.  
OK so let's start with the beginning of the month.
2 - the number of times I have been on an aeroplane this month.  Good old Easyjet.  Cheaper to fly up to Edinburgh than it would have cost us to buy the petrol we would have needed to drive up there.  And let's not forget the 50 minutes to get up there, compared to the 7 hours that it would have taken by car.
3 - number of days spent up in Scotland visiting our son

Onto medical matters:
1 - eye test ( have I ever shared the story of the time I accidentally tried to exit the opticians via a cupboard after mistaking the exit door?  Glasses?  Who said I needed glasses?)  anyhow, the eye test led to ... 
1 - pair of new glasses.

We've done ok for meals this month
2 - Saturday nights having dinner cooked for us by friends and
2 - meals out in restaurants

Exercise?  Of course I've had a month of exercise:
30 - number of dog walks (at least) one of which led to ...
1 - number of times I had to single handedly bath the dog.  Anyone who has tried to bath an overexcited puppy dog on their own will know that this ends up with both dog and human being equally wet. One shaking themselves to spray as much bath water as far as possible and the other screaming 'Stop that now and let me put this towel over you'.  And then one of them running up and down the stairs afterwards like a thing possessed trying to escape the hair dryer.  That's the dog, not me. 

4 - number of Strictly Come Dancing episodes.  Our friends know that any invitations to go out at this time of year have the proviso that we cannot possibly leave our house before 8pm on a Saturday night.  So book that table for 8.30pm or we will have to be fashionably late.

10 - number of people I've invited for Boxing Day lunch.  Which means that I will be cooking for 14 again.  Am I mad or what?

3 - numbers of pairs of shoes I have had to buy this month.  That's right.  HAD to buy.  Coco managed to destroy my best work shoes by chewing the heel off one of them.  Whilst shopping for replacements I noticed how tatty my old faithful ballet flats had become.  And then I saw some lovely new ones.  Whoops!  And walking the dog required me to buy a proper pair of walking shoes.  Waterproof, good grip and comfy.  None of the qualities I normally look for.  Well apart from the comfy bit, I mean, who knowingly buys a pair of uncomfortable shoes?  We all know that if they don't fit well in the shop, they certainly aren't going to fit well after wearing them to work for 8 hours.  This knowledge is obviously something that comes with age, my daughter definitely doesn't have comfy on her radar when shoe shopping!  
And finally ...
6 - numbers of bottles of wine I had to buy today.  Oh come on, Sainsburys have offers on loads of their wine and if you buy 6 you get a further 25% off as well.
£8.88 - the amount of money I saved by buying my six bottles. It's almost buy 4 get 2 free! 
Handy that, because all this blogging by numbers is thirsty work ;-)

Monday 26 November 2012

Hello Monday

Last week should have been entitled 'I used to be apathetic, but now I just can't be bothered' but this week I have given myself a shake and a stern talking to and I'm back on track.
Hello Monday - And hello to those crafty bits I've started 
are they the beginnings of Christmas cards I see?  And that home made card envelope containing the Theatre Tokens I gave to my friend for her birthday?
Hello Monday - And what's that in the spare bedroom?
Has someone started her Christmas shopping?
Hello Monday - That lamb casserole with Orzo pasta we had on Wednesday, that wouldn't have been a new recipe I'd been meaning to try would it?
Hello Monday - That post I received on Thursday, it couldn't possibly have been those photos that we took while we were in Scotland could it?

Hello Monday - It seems like putting my faults out in blogland was what I needed to get myself going.  Should I do the same this week?
Hello Monday - Focussing on negatives really affected my mood last week, this week I intend to be awesomely and amazingly positive in a happy, smiley kind of way and see what that brings.
Hello Monday - and goodbye to November at the end of this week!  I can't believe we are this close to December.

Monday 19 November 2012

Hello Monday

Hello Monday - Have you seen my crafting mojo?  I seem to have left it somewhere and can't find it.  I'm sure it'll turn up soon but it's definitely nowhere to be found at the moment.
Hello Monday - I have plans to try and get myself a bit organised re Christmas presents this year.  Maybe today I'll start by making a list of the people for whom I need to buy presents.  
Hello Monday - I need to give myself a big shake up and stop thinking and start doing. 
Hello Monday - Please remind me that browsing Pinterest does not constitute Christmas shopping.
Hello Monday - Those photos we took in Edinburgh are still on the computer and not being printed.  They will not upload themselves to Photobox.  Let's make today the day that I do that small job which may, in turn, help with Hello Monday #1
Hello Monday - Instead of browsing Pinterest this week, maybe I'll actually take a trip into town with the list I made in Hello Monday #2 and buy something!
Hello Monday - And what about all those new recipes I have been cutting out of magazines, downloading from the internet etc?  Should this be the week that I actually start cooking some of them?  This may help with Hello Monday #3
Hello Monday - I have a week of good intentions.  Do you think I'm likely to follow them?
Tune in next week to find out!

Thursday 15 November 2012

Simply a moment in November

It's 8pm.  We are all feeling full after a dinner of roast chicken, chipolata sausages, mashed potatoes, carrots, baby broad beans and gravy.  For some unknown, but universally agreed reason, a bottle of white wine which was laying chilled on its side in the bottle holder section of the fridge, waiting to be drunk, was opened.  I think we had all had 'one of those days'.  It is now empty and ready to be put into the recycling box outside the front door.
I am browsing through blogs on the laptop in the dining room and through the double doors leading to the lounge, I can hear a recorded Jules Holland TV programme being played.  My husband is sitting in the brown leather armchair watching it, although I suspect that if I got up and went into the room, I would find him 'listening with his eyes closed' (asleep!) 
The dog has obviously been up to no good in amongst the curtains at the patio doors that lead to the conservatory.  I just looked across the room to see what she was doing and she is fast asleep with the voile fabric draped around her.  All that is visible is her shaggy haired face.  From time to time I can see a slight move of the curtain as she twitches her paw - obviously dreaming.  She, too, enjoyed an extra supper of mashed potato and chicken, despite having already tucked into her own food at 6pm.
My daughter is upstairs, removing and replacing nail varnish and washing her hair as she is meeting up with friends after work tomorrow.  I can hear the swishing noise of the shower as the water hits the tiled walls of the bathroom.
It is pitch black outside.  The fog that we woke to this morning never really cleared and it has been a miserable, damp day.  The street lights are casting an eery yellow glow in the misty cold night air. Winter is really upon us. This is my moment in November.

Monday 5 November 2012

Hello Monday

Hello Monday - and hello back to work after a week of half term holiday
Hello Monday - and hello aching muscles in my legs - we must have walked MILES in our three days in Edinburgh
Hello Monday - and hello bath for the dog who ran through every single muddy puddle on our hour long walk in the countryside this afternoon
Hello Monday - and hello to employment for our son.  This time last week he had no job up in Scotland, today he has two!  A part time job with John Lewis until Christmas and a full time 'proper' job that he was interviewed for on Thursday, starting in December.
Hello Monday - and hello to seeing the new James Bond film on Wednesday
Hello Monday - and hello to firework night tonight.  Hope the noise doesn't upset little Coco too much, we will have to keep the tv turned up loud!

Hello Monday

Hello Monday - We have Children in Need at the end of the week,we need to think about what choose for the office theme for 'non uniform day'
Hello Monday -  I can upgrade my phone this week, I really hope that it is going to also be hello to an iphone 5 (I've loved my iphone 4 and have high hopes for the 5) 
Hello Monday - and hello to picking up the new Portmeiron pasta bowls that I ordered
Hello Monday -  and hello to having an excuse to try out lots of new pasta based recipes
Hello Monday - will the weather co-operate and let me continue my new Monday routine of a keep fit 30 minute long power dog-walk with my friend Lynda after I finish work?
Hello Monday - only two more days until the 2nd episode of the new season of Grey's Anatomy.  Last week's episode left me in tears, what more surprises do you have in store?

Sunday 4 November 2012

It was a dark and stormy night ...

... from inside the building they could hear the torrential rain lashing against the windows and the wind howling outside.  It had been dark for some time and the temperatures had dropped considerably.  Even so, it was far, far warmer inside than out and just the sounds of the horrific weather was enough to chill you to the bone.  The trees in the area just outside of where they were sheltering creaked as the force of the gale hit them and when the noise of the gusts dropped they could hear branches snapping and falling to the ground.  Even without looking outside, they knew that there was much debris accumulating around them and in the morning the landscape would look quite different to when they had last seen it in daylight. 
A rumble of thunder in the distance was becoming noisier as the storm travelled ever closer.  The lightening increased in intensity as the storm approached.  A flicker of the lights brought a scream from the youngest of them and sent the older woman into another room to search for candles and a lighter in anticipation of an inevitable power cut.  It was bad enough being inside listening to the storm with lights on; to be plunged into darkness would heighten their anxiety and preparation was key to survival.
As the minutes clicked by on the clock, they knew that soon a decision would have to be made.  They had a mission to complete and failure would lead to consequences which none of them wished to contemplate.  Things could get very messy indeed.
But who would take responsibility for the mission?  Each had their strengths and each had their weaknesses.  This was going to have to be a stealth mission.  The deed needed to be done and then they had to return to the sanctuary of their current safe place.  They looked from one to another, each hoping that someone else would offer to take the role of leader.  They looked at the unwilling participant without whose co-operation the mission could not be completed successfully.  Their look of trepidation was mirrored in her eyes.  Was she ready for such activity?  Could she complete the mission and return unscathed?  Only time would tell.
All eyes fell on the elder man.  He knew it was time to step forward and be a hero.  He locked eyes with their co-conspirator.  They moved to the hallway where they found the protective clothing they had prepared earlier.  The man knew that his safety depended on this, without it he would be exposed to the elements and make his task much, much harder.  When he was completely covered, he turned his attention to the person responsible for this mission.  Without whom he would be comfortably seated in his armchair at home.
Yes, there are times when NO ONE wants to be responsible for the last dog walk of the day and pre-bedtime 'comfort breaks' have to be made. Neither do they want to have to be the one to clean and dry her on her return ...

Now pop on over to Sian's blog for some more Storytelling Sunday entries!