Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Too Much of a Good Thing

I'm feeling amazingly dopey today - I spent a glorious weekend in Somerset with some of my scrapbooking friends, creating 'masterpieces'! enjoying the lovely spring weather, taking photos, eating and drinking - it was such a satisfying time, with great company in a lovely setting.

Came back for Ellie's birthday, and celebrated in style as my little girl grows up.

Another day on and my brain has given up, wandered round the supermarket wondering what on earth to get, and this despite my list. Can't really get motivated to do anything much - did dust a few things LOL but just too dopey. Obviously I've spent far too much energy enjoying myself and now I need to recuperate - funny, I thought that's what holidays are for.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

(Sub) - Urban Girl

Although I grew up in a semi-rural village and had a very countryside upbringing, I always hankered after the city, mainly London, the city of my birth, but I lived in Paris for a while as well, and have loved visiting many cities and get a real buzz from the city, it's architecture and the hidden corners, not to mention the vibe. Not having the money to live in the city, we live in the 'burbs, with all the ridiculous stereotypes and (sometimes real) caricatures of suburban domesticity!

However, recently I've wondered if I'm as urban as I think. This is mainly due to a photo project I'm doing, where I take a photo every day, hoping that 365 photos will provide an accurate snapshot of my life in 2009. I have realised that plants and growing things fill a much more important part of my life than I thought. No-one in their right mind would call me a gardener, but I do get a lot of satisfaction from growing a few things and I love my window box. More broadly, I think I really like seeing the changes in the trees that line our streets and in gardens, the flowers in front gardens, the local parks, and the way we can get into open country really quickly from our suburban home.

Apart from the plant worship, I have recently been making cards, partly to say thank you to the many generous people who have donated to my 'brick fund' for Romania. I now have a satisfyingly tall pile of cards ready to write.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Spring has Sprung!

Sometimes you know it's spring regardless of the date. I always announce spring with daffodils on St David's Day (1st March). Some people say 21st March (the equinox) is the first day of spring, but that means spring goes on until 21st June, and that's summer in my book.

Anyway, I knew it was spring today as it was warm enough to ditch my boots for the first time this winter (ankle, not wellington!) and wear flatties with no socks. The days are getting longer, welcome Spring 2009 - later than sometimes but all the more welcome for that.

I really wish for long blue sky days this year - not too bothered about heat, but I do like clear skies - they make me happy !

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Man U 1, Liverpool 4 - how good is that?

Come on you Reds! What a fantastically wonderful and unexpected result - I couldn't bear to listen - me of little faith! and when Ellie came dancing down the stairs celebrating I couldn't believe my ears. Just waiting for MOTD - recording it for posterity as well - I mean, it doesn't happen often, like every few decades.

Of course, once the euphoria dies down, I shall have to have a rant about all the points they've thrown away in draws at Anfield and what a waste it is that they won't win the title despite doing the double over Chelsea and the Mancs, but for now I'm just going to enjoy the feeling - can't wait to see Sir Alex chewing a wasp!

Going to see Palace winning at Swansea made Ken a happy bunny as well, not to mention a sunny lunch on the beach! Just to add to the general happiness, Shrewsbury got a draw at Gillingham as well.

Good day!!

Friday, March 13, 2009

Red Noses and Irritating Software

Today is Red Nose Day - a real fixture in the calendar of my children. Ellie went to school in red with sprayed hair. Adam has a trip to the Globe Theatre to see Romeo and Juliet so needs to wear school uniform, much to his disgust.

The Primary School seemed to forget about Red Nose Day and decided to have a history day instead where everyone dresses up as someone from the period they are studying. Nat went as a Tudor, long socks, breeches and top with short cape and bejewelled hat, and silver buckles on his shoes - very chic. School issued a belated appeal for funds for RND last night.

I do not have a red nose today, despite the pub visit last night with the girls - such fun. I went up to a friend's to help her wrestle with poorly conceived NHS work system which is compulsory to fill in if you want a pay rise - would have helped if it actually worked properly, but takes ages and you have to log in and out after each entry as there is a glitch in the system that the techies don't seem to know about or be in any hurry to fix.

It's easy to be patient when it's not your software or task, but so frustrating trying to help out when it's sooooooooooo slow!

Sunday, March 08, 2009

I get to be a Volunteer

I'm going to Romania with my Dad to build a house with Habitat for Humanity. We work with a family to help them build somewhere decent to live. I've been saving up for this trip for ages and now I've been accepted to go in June.

It's a real bonus that Dad's going as we've not really done anything together, just us, for years, so doing something I really want to do alongside him is fantastic for me.

Apart from the obvious worries about leaving the family, working in the heat etc. is the more immediate pressure of having to raise funds for materials. In this credit crunched world I'm asking all my friends for money. I shouldn't feel bad about it as it's not for me, I've paid for my trip, but it's raising my nose above the parapet and that's hard.

So far I have £5 from my Mum in law - hopefully there is more to come!!

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Disappearing Countryside

I went with the Wendys on a stash trawl today in the not so wilds of Sussex - got some nice stuff, but that's another story. While we were on the hunt we drove through Charlworth, a cute village about so many hundred metres off the end of the runway at Gatwich. We stopped and watched a few planes land, and at that distance the runway looked quite small and it was impossible to understand why, if another runway is added to the airport, the village would be destroyed - unless it would be so close under the flight path that living would be intolerable, - but that doesn't stop people living in Hounslow.

How can a strip of tarmac a mile long by a few metres wide come to swallow up so much countryside? I feel even sorrier for those people whose village is under threat from the Heathrow expansion now. I love flying but I can't see that it's worth destroying so much beautiful countryside and farmland.

Sunday, March 01, 2009

Social Life, lots of Glitter and the boy comes back

After being a taxi for what seems like weeks on end for the little darlings, we finally had some social life of our own this Friday. Babysitter arrived and we left in the same breath! So nice to go to see new friends, with some old friends thrown in for good measure and have a nice meal. Not too posh, but yummy. Would have been perfect if I hadn't had to endure the second half of Wales losing to the French, but still a very nice evening.

As Ellie had rehearsals and Adam was due home from his week's skiing in Austria, we headed off to school to help with the set. This entailed taking a lot of PVA glue, spreading it over various bits of the set and then slapping shocking pink glitter onto it. Of course it went everywhere - including all over us, but we got a lot done and welcomed the boy home looking as down and out scruffy as we could - luckily he's not at the age when he's permanently ashamed of us yet. We finally left about 5 and had a family meal together while hearing about his exploits on the slopes.

Finally we had friends for lunch today - good old Morrison's rotisserie produced two perfectly cooked chickens right on cue. Shame Adam and Ellie had more rehearsals - the show is this week - and missed playing with the little girls, but I got the chance to try out the large version of my waffleberry pudding in readiness for cooking for the oldies in a week's time - and guess what - it's all gone!!