Sunday, 29 March 2020

Naming and blaming

I am scared to get on the scales for a little while.  I fear that the fact that I have been wearing elasticated waist leggings and harem pants more often than normal may be leading me to mistakenly believe that all is well in the waistline department.  But it's not really my fault, I'm blaming you, Jamie Oliver, for that tv series you have on at the moment, the one that shows you varieties of ways to use the same ingredients and mix and match things you have got in your cupboard for things you haven't. You know, the one where you showed the cake you can make if you have no eggs, this one here.  It looked deliciously, scrumptiously, chocolatey and easy - and it was.  We had it warm last night for dessert and I shall be reheating some for dessert today to have with ice cream.  But the trouble is Jamie, that it makes 12 portions.  Twelve.  There are only two of us here, and unlikely to have visitors drop in for the foreseeable future.  And in my mind, I know that I should freeze half so that I am not tempted to keep it in the cake box in the kitchen, so that I am not tempted to have a slice with morning coffee, or afternoon tea and we all know that if I don't do it now, then I won't and that is a slippery slope.  So yes, any increase in waist size or weight is totally down to Jamie.  

I'm also blaming Joe Wicks for the fact that my legs are aching every time I go up and down stairs.  Joe is better known as The Body Coach and he's doing daily workouts for kids on his youtube channel.  They're aimed at little children, they can't be that hard can they?  This would be a good thing to do every morning to keep me active.  Well it turns out that they can be hard and I'm clearly far too old for kids PE.   It's not just Joe though, it's a lady on youtube called Cindy.  While looking on youtube for inspiration for a dance style of home exercise I came across this class.  It was good, it was fun and it had the word 'Senior' in it.  Then I woke up the next day and realised that perhaps my leg muscles weren't quite as fit as I thought they were.

While we're on the blame train, I'm blaming Netflix for enticing me into watching YOU and ensuring that our meals are not being cooked at their normal times.  The tension is mounting with each episode and Season Two seems to be even more intense than the first one was.  Oh go on then, I'll just watch one more episode before starting to cook lunch.

Finally, I'm blaming the lockdown situation for the fact that all hairdressers are closed when I was only one week away from an appointment for a cut and colour.  Which means that Snapchat has devised a filter which predicts exactly what I'm going to look like by the time this lockdown is over




Friday, 27 March 2020

Feelings

...

Last night, at 8pm people all over the UK stood at their front doors or windows and clapped their hands as a show of gratitude for all that the NHS workers and carers are doing for us at this unprecedented time of Coronavirus.  We are told to stay home and safely isolate ourselves while they are having to turn up for their shifts day after day, dealing with the most sick and vulnerable.  Their dedication for duty is unbelievable and there is little that we can let them know just how much we appreciate all they do other than stand together and give a round of applause.  As I stood at our front door, I could hear my handclaps being echoed around town, it was an emotional time.

So today, as my little sign says 'Today I'm feeling grateful'

Grateful for


  • the fact I live in a country where our health service is free to use and available to all
  • the fact that we had a family meal together with all our family just days before the 'stay at home' message was received
  • the fact that we have a beautiful country park just minutes from our house so dog walking can happen frequently and in lovely surroundings with plenty of room for perfect 'social distancing'
  • the fact that we have a garden and the perfect excuse to get out in the sunshine when ever we wish
  • technology which means that my exercise class can take place on line, plus I can do some extra Joe Wicks 10 minute classes -  we're going to be a nation of keep fit fanatics at the end of this!
  • a well stocked kitchen and the knowledge of how to use up left overs and make a variety of meals from not very many ingredients
  • Bloggers who keep blogging through this and give me a welcome distraction when good news seems sadly lacking from the news reports
But I am also concerned

  • our little grandson Max is poorly and has been to hospital twice in the last two days with a very high temperature and being very listless.  They think it is 'just' a virus but at the moment you can't help but be concerned.
  • for my daughter, whose job has come to an end.  She works for an estate agent and no one is buying or selling houses in the foreseeable future.
  • for my grandson Leo, who suddenly has no nursery school to go to, he can't see nanny and grandad or meet up to play with his friends.  It's a confusing time to be three.
  • how long this will go on for and how it will impact on the mental health of so many
I am also concerned about the effect this will have on my waistline as I find cooking is a good way to spend spare time and there is no end of delicious recipes being shown on tv using store cupboard essentials (I'm looking at you Jamie Oliver, taunting me with that delicious eggless chocolate cake that ends up being 438 calories a serving!) *

*Yes of course I'm going to be cooking it for dessert tonight

Saturday, 21 March 2020

Days in with a dog

Well it's all very strange here and I have to say that it isn't a bad time to be a dog.

I've been thinking about how all these new regimes are going to affect me ...




and - speaking as a dog, it isn't all bad.  From what I understand the humans are not going to be going out for a while.  What a result!  They go out far too often for my liking.  No more being escorted to my bed in the kitchen, door closed and them disappearing for hours on end.  Me, in charge of the whole house, on my own - too much responsibility for one small Cavapoo.  

I can still message my friends using the filters on Snapdog



And I am happy to hear that the pet shop where my food comes from does home delivery.  I thought it was a bit odd when my humans came home with an early supply of my food the other day even though I hadn't completely run out.  I mean, does it matter if I eat the last of the kibble?  I can always have human food, chicken, pasta, rice, eggs ... 

Oh wait a minute though, I heard one of my humans say that she couldn't believe that the shops had completely run out of chicken, pasta, rice, eggs ... well done humans on making sure I have my next month's supply of food in the garage!  Talking of food, my lady human came back from the shops yesterday in a state of high excitement - "I've got some fresh vegetables!" Honestly you would have thought she'd won the lottery.  I was very disappointed to see it was just broccoli, carrots, sweet potato, aubergine and courgette - none of which are appealing to me.

Now another positive thing about all this social distancing malarky is that you can still take your dog out for a walk.  In fact it's encouraged!  Result!  I see me having many more than normal trips over the park.  They may want to rent me out to people who don't have a dog and want an excuse to get out in the fresh air.  And the weather report for next week is dry and sunny - pass me my lead, I'm ready whenever you are.

I don't like to criticise but she's looking a bit scruffy, that lady human.  Something about not being able to go to the hairdressers next week as planned.  Well that's her own fault for going to the wrong hairdressers.  She should come to mine, 90 minutes of pure pampering.  Warm soapy all over bath, gentle blow dry, trim and spritz down with eau de toilette.  Regular treats and I lose count at how often they tell me what a good girl I am and how beautiful I look.  You don't get that were she goes I can tell you.


I even get a new bandana every time I go!

If anyone is looking for an excuse to get out in the fresh air, I am available for walkies any time of day.

Coco x






Friday, 20 March 2020

No excuses now

This enforced extra time at home has got to have a positive aspect to it - hasn't it?  I mean, I normally spend a fair bit of time indoors at home anyway, but that's my choice, being told I should limit the time I leave the house just seems different.  So I have to fill the hours in a constructive way so that when this is all over, we have something else to add to my 'ta dah!' lists.

I could do more baking.  But that uses up precious ingredients and will I be able to restock my flour, eggs, sugar ... I have enough in my cupboard for normal times, but these are far from normal times!  Also, we do have to consider the impact of more baking on my waistline!

Especially as all exercise classes are closed.  I had my last Zumba class yesterday.  My daughter gave me a quizzical look when I said I was going but it is a very large hall, and the majority of my class are over 70 and wouldn't be going so I knew there'd be plenty of room to spread out.  Doors and windows open, it felt less of a risk than queueing up in the supermarket.  Sure enough, out of a class of 40 or more, only 10 of us were there.  Even with just two in a row we only took up half the hall.  Oh how I enjoy those dance sessions.  They really lift your spirits and it is so good for us to keep active.  But the instructor has set up a private Facebook page for us and will be posting a live class once a week for us to join in with.  It won't be the same doing it in the lounge with the dog watching but it is better than nothing!

Coco is oblivious to the fact that she may be getting longer, more frequent dog walks as we have a legitimate excuse to get outside and into the fresh air.  I suspect gardening activities are going to increase too once the weather improves, but in the meantime ...

Decorating.  Our bedroom.  That job we've been talking about and not doing for the last couple of years.  The time has come.  No excuses!  We will be popping out to the local Homebase later this morning, before they have time to close 'non essential' shops.  Paint, lining paper, masking tape - all on the shopping list.  We're going a bit darker this time, and it's clearly a colour that I'm liking at the moment because look how the sample looks next to a t shirt I bought at the weekend!  


Photo does not show colour well, it's actually more blue than this would lead you to believe!

Are you going to be using these extraordinary times to get things that you have been putting on the back burner done?

Tuesday, 17 March 2020

Strange times

We seem to be living in a time that would not be out of place in a Stephen King novel.  A rare virus sweeps the world, major towns and cities become ghost towns as people lock themselves away in their homes.

I walked round to the supermarket this morning with Rosie, I'd done a 'big shop' for the week yesterday but as always, got home and realised that there were a couple of things on my list that I'd forgotten to get.  I was on my way to the frozen section when I bumped into someone I knew and ended up walking with them to the checkouts instead of getting the last two things on the list!  So I thought I'd pop in while out for a walk - big mistake.  It was so busy.  I've never seen such empty shelves - they were even giving out public announcements over the tannoy to ask people to only buy what they needed as they had plenty of stock being delivered regularly.  Fortunately we have our own ice cream factory at home, and a very helpful sales assistant!


My friend Karen, who lives in Spain, says it is like being under house arrest over there.  You cannot leave your home except to walk your dog for 100 metres, or to go food shopping or to the chemist and even then you have to be on your own.  Police cars driving up and down the roads telling people to keep indoors.  

Our neighbour, originally from Italy, has her father from Rome visiting.  He cannot go home, even if he could, he is elderly and better being here.  There you are given coupons to hand in at the shops so that you can only go shopping once a day.

My sister cancelled her trip to Portugal last weekend - her husband is 70 and therefore considered 'elderly' (they are not impressed by that!) plus has an underlying health condition.  He will now be confined to home.

Another neighbour flew out to Lanzarote on Wednesday and has been confined to her hotel room since Sunday, they've been assured they will fly back tomorrow as planned but until they are on the plane, I don't think they'll be able to relax.  It's not been the holiday they expected.

Both my 'children' and their spouses are working from home.  My daughter in law works for a charity who take donated left over food from supermarkets and restaurants and turn it into free meals for the homeless - due to stockpiling there is no left over food and the restaurants are now closed so there is no excess food there either.  

At the moment Leo's nursery school is open but it is rumoured that it will close soon due to staff shortages because of having to isolate, and the childminder that has him and Rosie on Wednesdays and Thursdays is still working at the moment.  But if both those situations change, it will be very hard for Rachel and her husband to work from home as 3 year olds and 1 year olds have no respect for a peaceful, quiet house!

I think Paul and I ought to stock up on multi vitamins in case extra childminding is on the cards!

How's everyone else coping?

Friday, 13 March 2020

Being smart

Hello, hello!


How are you? I can't decide if I'm being naive in how I'm reacting to everything that is going on the in the news, or maintaining a sensible attitude.  My house isn't full of toilet rolls, dried pasta or tinned tomatoes.  Our freezer is comfortably full without being overfilled.  I went out to dinner last night with three friends and we did hug each other goodbye.  Acting normally or being reckless?  

I did wash my hands after returning home from the supermarket, but I would have done that anyway.  And I am trying to remember not to touch my face - remember the rhyme 'elbows into your waist and you cannot touch your face'.


One way in which we are being 'smart' is that we have had a Smart meter fitted which shows us how much gas and electricity we are using and as it automatically uploads to our energy supplier, we will no longer have to do meter readings.  I said specifically that I did not want it to be positioned in the kitchen where I would regularly see it, I didn't want it to affect the way we live our life.  We aren't wasteful in our energy use, and are mindful of not leaving lights on etc.  The guy who fitted it told us that the most common over users of electricity are people who use an immersion heater for hot water and forget to turn it off, and underfloor heating in conservatories.  

So this is a photo of it earlier this morning, stationed in the study


Showing that at that moment we were using 3p worth of electricity per hour.  But I have gone from a person not wanting to look at how the usage changes, to one who is wondering 'How much will it go up when I switch on the washing machine/dishwasher/tumble drier/phone charger ....'  (It went up to 39p when I put the washing machine on for a hot wash in case you were wondering!). Will it affect my day to day routines?  Probably not much.  Will it make me more aware of what are the energy guzzlers in our home?  Yes!  

Do you have a Smart meter?  Have you noticed a difference in how you use energy in your home?  

Tuesday, 10 March 2020

10 on the 10th

From the number of posts I've done recently you may have noticed that I am following a few fellow bloggers with different memes and today it is '10 on the 10th' as seen on Leslie's blog.  

10 questions, based on this time of year.  10 answers ...

  • How did you celebrate Easter as a child?  When I was growing up we would always have toasted and buttered hot cross buns for breakfast on Good Friday and that was the only day of the year that we would eat them.  Nowadays you can buy hot cross buns all year round and it has somehow taken away the 'special' feeling of eating one but they are so delicious I cannot resist buying them.  However, we only ever have the traditional fruit buns, I'm not one for chocolate or salted caramel hot cross buns - something about messing with the flavours doesn't seem right. We will also usually have fish for dinner on Good Friday.  And last but by no means least - I almost forgot to mention chocolate Easter eggs on Easter Sunday ... 
  • Do you spring clean?  Not to the extent that my Mum used to!  She would clean everything - no cupboard was left untouched.  I have phases of ruthlessly cleaning one room at a time so I guess I could say that I do spring clean, it just takes me a while to go through the whole house.  There is something about freshly cleaned windows and a dust free room though.  We have a window cleaner come and do the outside of the windows every couple of months and I always go round and clean the inside on the same day - I do like a sparkling clean window!
  • What’s spring weather like where you live?  Impossible to predict!  We have had sunny springs, and we have had snowy springs - I wonder what this year will be?
  • How green is your thumb? I have to admit that Paul is the gardener in our home, I am just the part time assistant.  My speciality is pruning things back but have a reputation for getting carried away! In the interests of being up to the minute with this post, this photo of our back garden was taken this morning.


  • AC on or windows open? No need for air con here in Hertfordshire!  I do like to open the windows when the sun is shining and the temperatures pick up, there is something about airing a room which makes it nice and fresh.  
  • How do you decorate for spring/Easter/Passover?  This is the first year I have bought anything to decorate the house at Easter time but I'm pretty happy with my little Easter tree.

  • How do you get bathing suit/shorts/warm weather ready?  I'm not sure I ever do 😊 I normally have a little panic when I start to try on last summer's clothes - amazing how they can shrink a little when they've been hanging in the wardrobe over winter!
  • Is your closet arranged with just the current season’s clothes?  We can have all four seasons in one day here so I always have a variety of clothes in my wardrobe.  Sleeveless dresses and shorts get put away in about October and thick jumpers get put away when I bring the summer bits back down in about May.

This is a picture of my wardrobe space.  When I see pictures of American homes with walk in wardrobes I am amazed!  So the tall wardrobe space is for the clothes I am wearing at the moment and any out of season clothes are in vacuum packs in my half of the small cupboards above the bed.  I also have 5 drawers in a chest beneath the bedroom window for underwear, nightwear and sweaters.

  • What’s your go-to spring uniform?  Cropped trousers with t shirts or dresses with a blazer
  • What outdoor activities do you enjoy in the spring?  Longer dog walks!  I'm not one for competitive sports.  Trouble is, I'm just not competitive so no one would want to be my partner!  
So that is it, 10 facts about spring over in Deb's World!

One photo - Twenty words


Always nice to have a manicure, and even nicer when you realise you perfectly match the flowers in the kitchen.

Sunday, 8 March 2020

Keep calm and carry on?

At the end of last week Rachel told me that she had been to the supermarket and seen that there was no liquid soap on the shelves at all, nor paracetamol, nor toilet rolls.  Now, in view of the virus which is on every news report and every newspaper, I can understand the soap, and possibly the paracetamol but toilet paper?  Then I saw on Facebook that another supermarket in town had sold out of tea bags, flour and custard cream biscuits.  Clearly the belief that us Brits believe that a nice cuppa and a biscuit is the answer to all woes is correct.  Apparently, a supermarket in Ely had sold out of tonic water so I suspect that the people of Cambridgeshire are knocking back the Gin and Tonics to take their mind off the crisis.  (Should I be considering moving to Ely?)

Am I wrong in believing that supermarkets have well stocked warehouses and restock their shelves every day?  Am I going to be the only one who isn't stockpiling essentials?  Has anyone else noticed empty shelves? If so, what is selling out fast in your area?


🌸🌸🌸

Warm dry weather has meant that the annual 'first cut of the lawn' has taken place.  I did the front lawn on Friday and the back lawn on Saturday, it certainly makes things look tidier out there and it was lovely to see how many plants are starting to come into flower.  


🎸🍷🎸

We went to a local-ish pub on Friday evening as they had a live music evening.  It was a couple of guitarists that we have seen play before - they are so talented and we spent all evening singing along.  Isn't it weird that I haven't listened to Simon and Garfunkel's music for many a year, yet the moment they started the introduction to 'The Boxer', I remembered every single word of the whole song.  Yet if I have to remember to buy four things at the shops, I guarantee I will normally come home with only three, the memory is a strange thing isn't it?


πŸ›πŸ›πŸ›
Apparently that is the emoji for curry!

Saturday evening was curry night.  We have a group of three couples whose main thing in common is that we all lived in the same street at one point in 1991!  The wives first met at the local primary school as our children are all a similar age and the school playground at pick up time is a good place to make new friends.  Then the husbands started to play badminton every Tuesday and a social group evolved!  We have a routine of getting together a few times a year, taking it in turns to host the evening.  We ring for an Indian takeaway meal, share the cost, everyone brings their own drinks - it's a very informal thing but nice to all get together now we have all gradually moved away.  I always have to plan what I'm going to wear around the colour of what I order as I guarantee there will always be some food mishap that ends up with me wearing some of my main course!

We had no plans for today, which is a rare thing, a pub in town is hosting a vinyl sale and naturally Paul has to go and visit that - after all, he needs to add to his collection now he has a new record player.  But first, a morning dog walk in the country park behind our house, where we noticed a couple of new arrivals on the lake



Two swans, serenely swimming around, the ultimate example of being tranquil above the surface while frantically paddling to keep afloat beneath.  A definitive symbol of what we all should be doing: keeping calm and carrying on!


Wednesday, 4 March 2020

Currently - March 2020

I saw the idea for 'Currently' on Leslie's blog although I believe she, in turn, got the idea from Ann in her Anne in residence blog so would like to share with you the things that I am doing 

Currently ...

For March the suggestions are borrowing, feeling, fixing, hearing and recommending

Borrowing


As you know, my children are all grown up (33 and 30) and we are now enjoying time having their children come to visit.  We kept back a few of their favourite toys over the years but on the whole have donated or recycled all the others.  We have been so fortunate that our neighbour opposite and a lady I used to work with think of us when they are going through toys their children have grown out of and have lent us so many toys and garden play equipment that we have a very well equipped 'creche' at our house!


Feeling


Hopeful that spring is just around the corner, the weather has been wet and windy and it really impacts on your mood.  Today it is cold, but bright and dry, the snowdrops and daffodils are either in flower or about to open and I hope that we may have many days like this to come.


Fixing


My wardrobe.  Not the actual wardrobe itself, but what is inside it!  I didn't buy many clothes last year and feel that it has taken me a couple of years to sort out the kind of wardrobe of clothes I need for this life of early retirement with occasional days of childminding.  I'm gradually weeding out all the clothes I haven't worn in the last year and those which I have worn so much they are looking tatty or no longer in style.  I have probably given to charity shops or discarded (depending on the state of the clothes!) about half my wardrobe, it is looking decidedly depleted!


Hearing


Podcasts last thing at night, although I rarely get to the end of an episode before falling asleep and often wake up wondering why my ear feels odd before realising I am still wearing my headphones!  


Recommending


We were scrolling through the films on BT vision and Netflix one Saturday a couple of weeks ago - how can there be so much choice and we still can't find one we like the sound of?  We came across Green Book which Paul thought he may have heard was good so we clicked on 'play' and thoroughly enjoyed it.  Turns out it is based on a true story, which made it even more interesting!


Are you going to join in?  What are you currently borrowing, feeling, fixing, hearing and recommending?


'Ta Dah' in February

Quite a few of the events that happened in February did not really lend themselves to being added to my 'Ta Dah' list even though they took up a lot of time this month.  So I'm going to start with the happy things that were achieved.

πŸ”…πŸ”…πŸ”…

I finished knitting the bonding squares for the NICU at the hospital where Max was born.



I have now sent them four hats, one cardigan and three bonding squares.  I'm going to hang up my knitting needles for a little while now!


πŸ”…πŸ”…πŸ”…

You can tell I'm scraping the barrel now when I share this next photo




Over ten years ago we went to Tunisia for a holiday and I brought back a belly dancing coin skirt.  'You'll never wear that' said Paul.  Well this month I can say 'ta dah!' I've worn it!  And in public too.  Well, not out in the street obviously, but at my Zumba class.  The teacher has a stock of coin skirts that she hands out for the 'Bollywood' tracks that we dance to but this week I was able to join the ranks of people who wear their own.  I'd almost forgotten I had it, but discovered it lurking in a box of scarves at the back of the wardrobe when I was looking for something else - obviously I didn't believe I'd ever wear it either!


πŸ”…πŸ”…πŸ”…

The final 'ta dah' really is something finally done, not something I particularly wanted to do but it was something that had to be done.  We said farewell to Paul's mum.  At the age of 93 she had lived a long, eventful life and we were determined that her funeral would be full of memories rather than sadness.  Everyone commented on how well it went and what happy memories of her it brought back so it feels worthy of inclusion in this post. I had been dreading it, I worried about Paul - all the arrangements falling to him as her only child, I worried about our children - losing their last grandparent, I worried about Leo - trying to explain the concept of death to him (needn't have worried about that one, he was very accepting of it and we have made sure we still talk about her in front of him so he realises there is no stigma around it) and I'll be honest, I worried about me.  Supporting everyone else while coping with the memories and emotions of losing my own parents.  But - we did it and I think we did her proud.

What 'Ta dah!' moments did you have last month?


Monday, 2 March 2020

Sentence a Day - February

Welcome aboard!  Another month bites the dust - and this one had a bonus leap year day at the end.  It has held very mixed emotions as the month unfolded.

Day 1 Beautiful morning today, so I parked my car at edge of town and walked the rest of the way - bought a bright bunch of flowers and a new clutch bag to replace the one that has definitely seen better days



Day 2 Jon, Sophie and baby Max came for lunch - baby led weaning has begun and you should see Max demolish handfuls of broccoli!

Day 3 Went for drinks with people I used to work with - was good to catch up on all the gossip!

Day 4 Childminding day, strange how I always sleep so well on a Tuesday night ;-)

Day 5 Took Coco to the groomers - she's so clean and white, I think we shall be having a few days of walks on pavements rather than runs around the field so she stays clean a bit longer.

Day 6 Awoke to the news that Paul's 93 year old mum had passed away in her sleep in the early hours, Rachel and Jon came to spend the day with us.

Day 7 Started to make calls and appointments for all the legalities that need to be done in advance of arranging the funeral

Day 8 Starting to feel a bit less shell shocked now, cooked a nice meal in the evening and watched a film which, although I'd never heard of it before (The Green Book) was really good.

Day 9 Storm Ciara hit the UK, was a very blustery dog walk this morning but it looks like our area has escaped the worst of it.

Day 10 A busy day with official appointments with the registrar and undertaker but feel that we have now done all we can before the actual funeral

Day 11 Back to normality with a day of childminding - it was bitterly cold but we still braved the elements for our afternoon walk, even though Rosie seems to have forgotten she's supposed to use that time to have a nap!

Day 12 Seems like we are going through a sad patch, attended the funeral of someone Paul worked with for many years.

Day 13 Discovered the belly dancing skirt that I bought in Tunisia hidden at the back of the wardrobe and remembered to take it to wear at Zumba today.



Day 14 Valentines day - instead of going out for a meal we enjoyed a 'Dine in for £20' meal deal from Waitrose; Arancini balls for starters, steak, frites, roasted Mediterranean veggies for main and salted caramel profiteroles, all accompanied by a rather nice bottle of red wine - what a bargain!

Day 15 Storm Dennis arrived in the UK, still seemed quite mild out there when we went to bed.

Day 16 Obviously the strength of the storm picked up overnight, woke to discover that two of our neighbours' fence panels had come loose into our garden - even though it isn't our responsibility to fix, Paul had to do some d-i-y to make it secure so that Coco doesn't have the run of the whole road when we let her out into the garden!

Day 17 Unexpectedly had Rosie here for the morning while Rachel took Leo to see the Paw Patrol film 

Day 18 Childminding day - had Leo as well all day as it is half term - Rosie is now confidently walking #nannyandgrandadareexhausted

Day 19 Hair cut day, but it was blowing a gale and starting to rain as I left the salon and so by the time I arrived home I looked much less styled than I had half an hour before!




Day 20 Zumba!  A bright spot in amongst rain, wind and cold temperatures.

Day 21 Met up with Ruth, her son and Tilly the Cavachon in Cambridge - I've followed Ruth's blog for years and I am pleased to report that she is as lovely in real life as she is in blogland!

Day 22 We have my sister and brother in law, my cousin Amanda and her partner coming for Sunday lunch tomorrow so today was 'tidy up' day, not to mention a big supermarket shop!

Day 23 Sunday lunch was lovely, I had been anxious about it as my cousin's partner has recently been diagnosed as pre-diabetic so has to follow a keto diet - I learned a lot about carbohydrates while deciding on what to cook!

Day 24 Lots of last minute jobs to do in preparation for the funeral on Wednesday.

Day 25 Shrove Tuesday - I let Leo help with making the pancakes, it looks like there was an explosion in a flour factory in my kitchen

Day 26 Bright and sunny day to say our final farewells to Paul's mum - it was a lovely service and it was a true celebration of a long life.

Day 27 Woke to snow this morning - thank goodness it wasn't like this yesterday!  Only mushy snow though, it didn't settle

Day 28 Baked Jon's birthday cake ready for Sunday and had friends over in the evening for drinks

Day 29 Storm Jorge is heading for the UK, very wet and windy weather this morning, quite content to spend the afternoon baking pecan and cinnamon sponge with butterscotch sauce ready for tomorrow's lunch!

As usual I have made a 1 Second a Day video round up of this leap year February - only four years to wait until it comes around again!


And, as usual, I am a day early for the official link up for the Sentence a Day party - what can I say?  I am a creature of habit and always feel the need to hit the 'publish' button on a Monday!  Pop back again in a day or so and see everyone else's month ...
You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!