Monday, 28 February 2011

Looking back...and ahead...

So today is the last day of February and so this marks my completion of NaBlo. I think, as I have already mentioned in an earlier post, that this is something I shall continue to partake in in future months...but not next month! I mean, you never know, I might just end up posting every day next month, but the pressure of having to post every single day was a bit much. On days when I really did have nothing to say (why Bex, that was most of February, wasn't it?) I sometimes found the prompts a little uninspiring...or none existent! Whilst it is totally understandable that the good folks behind NaBlo have, you know, their own lives, the lack of weekend prompts left me, at times, at a loss for blogging.

Still, life wouldn't be fun without something to work towards and I'm think of taking up the 30 day challenge that Joelle has been gradually working through at Love is Home...nothing special, just 30 little questions to be answered, just to keep the juices flowing if I get stuck. No pressure to post every day, just something to keep you mulching over.

Which is definitely what I need at the minute! Things seem a bit stagnant right now. I say that yes, hopefully things will speed up in the fullness of time but I can't see why or how or for definite, it's just a hope.

This leads onto a bit of a sigh of exasperation now. The whole point of me starting this blog was in order to have a more personal platform than facebook with which to document the great changes that we had hoped to incorporate into our lives over the next year or so, but...

...well, they just aren't happening? Or at least, they won't be happening, not in the way we wanted to. Allow me to elaborate. We are now, err, not moving to Durham, and are staying in Liverpool.

I don't know whether to feel annoyed or happy or dissappointed or whether to jump for joy or weep uncontrollably over this new/old/inevitable decision. I don't know whether to blame Ben or myself or "the state of the economy, chunter chunter chunter". Truth be told, so far as feelings and playing the blame game are concerned, I think it's most definitely a case of "all of the above".

I mean there are plusses to it of course, but I've ruminated through all of the pro's and con's, each option has a ton of either, ranging from niceness of the area to affordability to family concerns...and I could ruminate even further but it gets me no where. What's really playing on my mind is...

Look, can we not just make a decision?

My best mate Becky has known us for a fair few years now and I think since knowing her we've been chopping and changing. One minute we're moving up north. Then we're moving down south. Then we're staying put. Actually, I know it's not the most important factor for figuring in life changing decisions, but we must be looking pretty fucking flaky to the folks we know and love here in Liverpool. And then...what about our families? They're offering their assistance and support of all manners but the truth of the matter is, if I were them, I'd be getting pretty tired of listening to all this waxing lyrical about moving up or down or just down the road if I were them.

So why do it? For some reason either I have the seeming inabillity to say no to Ben, or Ben just doesn't understand how I feel, so without turning this into a huge mega anti Ben rant, which it is not because I can see Bens point of view, I'm just trying to express my own exasperation at the situation, let me say this...

Our flat and the area in which we live aren't exactly brilliant, and it gets upsetting not being able to be close to family when they're out having a good time without you or going through mega, mega shit life changing events, but actually...I like Liverpool enough to say hey, lets stay here forever, or at least you know, lets just settle down, stop getting worked up about things x, x, or x person has said. Be honest, these people are usually people who have never actually lived here and without insulting some of both of our nearest and dearest on either side of the family, only have hearsay to go by. Oftentimes our own but that's more of a statement on the immediate surroundings of Anfield, not the area as a whole. You've often said yourself you'd not mind living in the Wavertree area, we never had much trouble there, but the past 3 years, hard as they've been, I fear have tainted both of our views.

Wow, haha, you have no idea how great it is to get that off my chest :D

But seriously...I've had enough of putting my life on hold because we can't look for a house till we have jobs up north, there's no point signing up for college if we won't be in the area etc etc. 3 days ago I was perusing the local job openings in the local tattle rag up north and now, from yet another turn around, I'm looking at jobs and houses in Liverpool again. Ok you could say...well technically that's not on hold...but seriously, with such quick and ground shattering turn arounds, is it any wonder I feel like I'm going no where? I could have already been in training at ChildLine (so glad I never threw the application out!) and because we'd made this "groundbreaking, definitive, this is it" decision to move up north, I didn't register at college. I find myself now in a mad scramble as I ponder what it is I should I leave it, yet again another year (I've been putting it off and off and off for so long now) or do I hope and pray for the best that it isn't too late to sign up for it this year?

Anyway. It can be safely said that we're remaining on Merseyside for the forseeable future. I can only say the forseeable future because God knows when the next big thing will be that will push someone over the edge and want them to go running home again. But surely, we're in our mid twenties now, running home to mummy is no longer the answer? We should be running home to each other, being, you know, married, and as far as I'm concerned...I'm quite happy and at home right here :)

Sunday, 27 February 2011

To flu...or not to flu?

So the minor cold I had seems to have turned into full blown flu. If that's possible. Technically it's not, but I've gone from having a few sniffles that were exaccerbated by cat allergies to having full on shivers, fever that won't go away (poor Ben is freezing cold while I sit next to a wide open window sweating every last drop of water left in my body) and aches and pains in muscles I never realised I owned.

Not sure why this has happened. I had felt I was getting over the cold I had, but alas I am wrong. Have to wonder if it's anything to do with the steroids the lovely doctor at the hospital gave did say they can worsten viral infections in the leaflet. It says specifically to be wary of Chicken pox and Tuberculosis, but somehow I don't think I have either of these ;)

So if I'm no better by the morning, I'm heading back to the doctor to...well, I don't know, because it seems like a sensible thing to do? I know it's most likely a viral infection and there's nothing that can be done for that...but the whole asthma thing...

Well anyway. My point is, I've stayed in bed most of the day shivering away and slurping down lemsip so there's nothing much to report on I'm afraid. I hope I find you all well and in much better health than I :)

Saturday, 26 February 2011

Now for something more substantial

Ok, well first off, appologies for the lack of response to comments etc, as you know I've been quite busy this week and it's been all I can do to make sure I'm posting at least once every day for the sake of NaBlo, even when I have been ill and briefly in hospital, but more on that later!

After all, I have my entire week to expand upon, and pretty photographs to illustrate all the fun things I've been doing :D

Anyhow, last Sunday my lovely mother in law came to visit the hubby and I, and on Monday we took her out into Liverpool. It was a bit grey :( but I did get to spy a sculpture I'd been wanting to see...

"X-ray Ted Golf Bug" is made from recycled materials including those from a motorbike and golf clubs (though the motorbike part is more obvious, I didn't actually realise they were golf clubs at the time lol). I know this particular picture that Ben took doesn't really show it off to its best angle but it is pretty impressive. It comemorates two medical breakthroughs made in Liverpool; the use of an X-ray by Charles Barkla in 1896 to show a bullet in a boy's wrist, and the discovery that Malaria is transmitted to humans by mosquitoes by Ronald Ross in 1902. I'd recommend anyone passing through Liverpool at the minute to go take a peek at it as it is rather impressive. It can be found at the bottom of Bold Street.

And if you needed any other excuses to go see it, it happens to be just opposite a rather awesome sweet shop SugaCane (I think that's the name....) which is where we were on our way to when we saw it know...go get some sweeties and appreciate some culture too!

Anyhow, after satisfying our sweet tooth and ogling the giant motorbike mosquito, we made our way through town to Liverpool One to go to Jamie Oliver's Italian restaurant down there. Once again, highly recommended. I'm not a huge fan of Italian Food wow...that is all I have to say on the matter.

On our way down there we saw some pretty hearts hanging up, remnants of Valentines Day...

They are of no great significance, but it just so happened to be mine and Ben's 2nd wedding anniversary ^_^ so they made me feel happy, and I made him take a photograph so that I could share it here :D

Anyhow, Tuesday saw us taking to the coach to come up to County Durham, and after settling in we spent Wednesday with Mum, Gran and baby brother Natty, out for a yummy meal. It was a pretty relaxing day, nothing much to report.

Thursday we took Natty out to pick up his new glasses and when we got home we watched "Valhalla Rising". I'd attempt to seriously review it for you, however we got maybe 20 minutes in and mum decided to "fast forward" through the DVD to "get to th action". Sadly, whether it was because she skipped too fast or because our conclusion was correct, there was no more action until a few deadly arrows and then a bludgeoning to death at the end. Now...someone I was speaking to recently mentioned Valhalla Rising to me but I can't for the life of me remember who it was who did so whoever it was...but whoever it was seemed to like it, so I was quite looking forward to it. It also promised action and blood and guts which I, as a bloodthirsty shock craving psychopath, was quite looking forward to. There was action and there was blood and guts, but after a couple of particularly gory opening scenes involing the rather graphic ripping out of one unfortunate's intestines, the action and blood seemed to take a down turn.

Still, I think I may well have to give it another watch with a fresh pair of eyes. Knowing now that it's not all action (and mostly not much dialogue either) perhaps I can appreciate it more. That said, most of what I did see in the first 30 minutes or so was pretty much...

Mads Mikkelsen staring mysteriously off into the distance...

Anyhow, yesterday came along...the day I've been waiting for since I was getting a new hair do :D going short again for the first time in 3 years. Anyhow, after my earlier post I did indeed decide on the sleek and sexy look...

And it translated as so on me...

If I can be picky, and I can, it's not precisely what I asked for...I even showed her the picture, and expected it to be a little more choppy...but it does still look very good! I'm loving the fact that my hair looks a lot lighter and much more platinum like how I wanted it when I first dyed it blonde when it's this length. Of course, my hair being naturally curly we have yet to see what it will do after a tumble without a hair dryer, but then again it's already gone wavy after the humidity of my shower this morning and it still looks really lovely!

Indeed, it was already getting to that point a couple of hours after that picture was taken... sexy. Ben thinks this particular picture is cute. But then, he would :p Dad thinks it looks like it was taken in the psychiatric ward. Dad, if you're reading this...cheers!

Anyhow, that was in Durham, and when we came home from Durham we had a lovely takeout with the family and watched Outlander. Sadly, like Valhalla Rising, I can't really review it for you as I ended up in hospital as you may have guessed from yesteday's blog. I had a really bad do with my asthma and couldn't breath at all, most likely from my cat allergy. So after I nearly blacked out from a panic attack when my throat very, very briefly closed up (but seemed to get better afterwards) they sent me down to my Grans blessedly cat free home, but when mum dropped me off I got worse again. I mean, lying on the sofa gasping for breath and barely even able to talk worse...

She was about to rush me off to A&E when it clicked that our local A&E had closed and we'd actually have to travel further. However, where said A&E had been, there is now an urgent care centre, but you need to call up for a an appointment. After asking about your symptoms they decide whether to keep you at home, bring you in, or call for an ambulace to rush you.

Well. Considering I was gasping for air and having what was obvious to me having dealt with my condition since childhood, and what should have been a relatively short phone call, mum ended up on the phone for 20 - 30 minutes while the woman on the other end of the phone pretty much argued the hell out of her over whether I was having a heart attack or not. At first it was fair enough, standard fare when someone has a tight chest...does she have pain in her chest, is the tightness like a belt around the chest, is there pain in the arm, is there pain in the chin etc etc...the kind of stuff that you'd expect...which kind of narked my mum because she's a nurse herself and she's been looking after me and my asthma since I was a small child...and she had repeatedly's just an asthma attack, can we please come and see the doctor here instead of going to A&E...

But these things must be done, and it's fairly understandable. What really narked my mum...and Ben and my Gran...and me, understandably, since I wanted to go and get all nebulized up so I could breathe again...was when she started asking the exact same questions again...only with "stabbing pain" " sharp pain" "tight pain" and "throbbing pain". At one point, mum plain stopped and said "look, she isn't in pain, she just has a tight chest because she's having an asthma attack and she can't breathe!". To which the lovely lady on the other hand, instead of carrying on with the script because, you know, as my dad said earlier in the night when I was arguing over whether or not to stay the night at my Grans..."not breathing, that's one of the symptoms of death, isn't it?"...she began arguing with my mum, that tightness was actually a kind of pain...

Then she found out I didn't live locally and started probing about my recent journey incase it was a blood clot in my lung. Hey Einstein, don't you think by the time you'd questioned about stabbing, throbbing, radial, sharp, fairy related pains in every last corner of my body I'd already be dead if it was a clot in my lung?

Ok ok I really appreciate the NHS, I am a huge supporter and it has done nothing but good by me, but it just seemed that 1) this particular woman, having gotten upset by the fact that my mum was loosing her temper was beginning to get narky and irritable back but then, I know pleanty of call centre workers who have to deal with such people on a day to day basis (Ben being one of them) and they can't just get narky and agressive back. I understand her position at having to tick boxes, but if she's going to work the job she has, surely she has to understand that people are going to get narky and upset and panicky if they have to go through this during an event in which they are watching their loved ones suffer and struggle to do something like breathing? In such a situation...surely you shouldn't start arguing over what is or isn't pain, and get on with the phone call. 2) Who the hell decided it would be a good idea to have someone go through all those questions in the first place? Look, heart attacks aren't the only things that can kill people which involve a tightening of the chest or difficulty breathing. Let me get this straight..I wasn't so bad just yet, but I was on the verge of passing out...I couldn't think, I could barely coherently answer my mums questions which she relayed from this woman on the phone. My gran was telling her to hang up the phone and dial 999 but we knew from experience that I didn't need rushing in to A& mum could have driven us to the urgent care centre in perfectly good enough time...all I needed was a nebulizer...but we needed to let them know we were coming and thanks to so many questions, it was delayed.

Seriously, by the time this Q&A system was over, we could have been there. Anything could have happened in the mean time. And it wasn't even the concept of being questioned that was the was the ammount of basically repeated questions. If you answer "no" to "is there pain in your arm" then it stands to reason that the answer is still going to be "no" if the question is "is there stabbing pain in your arm".

Anyhow...enough of the ranting :D seriously, someone needs to chop away this red tape because things could run so much more efficiently without it...what really reflects on this is that as soon as we arrived the receptionist had me get in a wheelchair and have the nurse come for me immediately rather than wait for my appointment.

Anyhow, it was as I had expected a case of the doctor listening to my chest and strapping on a nebulizer mask and giving me some steroids to take. These came in soluable form and were really quite disgusting...

As you can see, I did not approve of their vile flavour. Haha. But don't worry, this isn't as sick or inappropriate picture as you may this point I'd taken most of the Salbutamol in the nebulizer and was actually able to breathe properly. I was cracking sick jokes and the photo somehow seemed like a good idea "for my blog". Under normal circumstances I probably wouldn't have made said suggestion...but like I said, I'd been a little oxygen depraved and wasn't thinking straight. Ben thinks it should still be put up here because "it's an account of the week". So here you have it, me getting high in a salbutamol den.

Doctor was a lovely lady who had asthma herself, which was great because I often think people who don't have asthma don't understand it. They either think it's a condition which is no more than a minor irritance...a chronic bad cough...or they think it's a debilitating deadly condition which needs mollycoddling. The truth is it can be both and everything inbetween depending on the severity within the patient and how well the condition is managed. With good managment it doesn't have to be a problem, but if someone comes into contact with their "trigger" it can turn nasty pretty quickly. My triggers happen to be allergens and exercise (which is probably why my weight has spiralled out of control, though the sad fact is that weight also exacerbates asthma). I've had doctors poo poo it off before, and I've also been warned heavy handedly by nurses not to be so flippant about having it. Last nights case was a rareity...the last time I was anywhere near as bad as that was over 3 years ago.

Anyhow, today I spent chilling out and relaxing. The problem with asthma attacks is that after having been fighting for air your lungs feel like they've been sandpapered and every muscle in my body aches where I've been tense and flailing (well...flailing is a bit extreme but I can't think of another word to describe it). I was worried about coming back to Liverpool as I'd have to come on a coach where they spray harsh chemicals in the toilet and more often than not the passengers are spraying deoderants and perfumes etc. Thankfully my lovely dad stepped in and drove us down instead. Still having to use my Salbutemol inhaler the doctor gave me every couple of hours because I'm getting chesty again but I think it's just the after effects...lungs that, ironically, have become raw and inflamed after the very act of having an asthma attack.

I hope I haven't bored you all with my accounts of hospitalization and what could possibly be terrible terrible films. I leave you on a much lighter note...which custom Beetle spied on our travels is in poorer taste...

Pink Beetle with custom liscense plate:


If you hadn't noticed, this car is painted in the colour "pink"

Or yellow Beetle with custom surfing paint job...

If I can be honest with you, I wouldn't mind owning either of these cars...

Friday, 25 February 2011

Asthma kitties

No post today other than this brief hello as i just arrived at my grans cat free home after a trip to hospital. more on that tomorrow. Even hospital cannot stop me from completing nablo!

Thursday, 24 February 2011

A less flawed me

What are the Top Ten things you would change about yourself?

  1. My big belly. Weight in general, but it's my belly that annoys me the most!
  2. My beard. Yeah. I have PCOS and it gives me a beard. Pisses me off.
  3. My temper. I have a terrible temper. It needs to cool down!
  4. I'm allergic to cats, something I'm feeling particularly harshly this week. I love kitties though so I wish I wasn't
  5. It's probably my weight but I'm quite lethargic. Wish I had more energy!
  6. I'd have perfect eyesight instead of my funky bad eyes
  7. I'd be able to wear high heels
  8. I would have more patience to practise things
  9. I'd be more assertive
  10. I'd be more honest with people about what I think and stop trying to please everyone else!

Wednesday, 23 February 2011

The ring of power

Wednesday, February 23, 2011
Have you ever lost anything of value? Do you still think about it? Imagine how you'd feel if you'd given it away instead.

My Granny gave me a ring once. It is silver, with a large intricate silver kind of frame as the centre piece bearing marquesites and a teeny tiny pearl. Her brother, who was mostly paralyzed from below his arms, and sadly died before I came into the world, made it for her.

So imagine the horror my mum put me through when I lost it!

I do still think about it because, thank the heavens, I found it. However for a time I thought it had been stolen by my recently gone haywire ex girlfriend, and oh my, mother was fuming at that prospect. She had always liked the ring and had slipped it onto her fingers on any number of occasions...but really mum, do you think I'd have ever given away such a precious family heirloom?

I've lost other bits and bobs of jewellery over the years, though thankfully nothing of any value. It does miff me off though when I think "ooh such and such a piece of jewellery would compliment this outfit" only to be unable to find it again :(

Tuesday, 22 February 2011

Kitties Everywhere!

Well here I am in County Durham, being assaulted by mad fur shedding kitties!

It wouldn't be so bad if I wasn't actually rather badly allergic to them, but not only that, I'm suffering a nasty cold at the minute :( Can barely stand in the living room without having to use my inhaler. Not a good situation.

However, we've been having fun and frolics and it's all happy families. Not much to report upon really since we spent the better half of the day on the coach, although we did almost have a run in with a racist taxi driver. More on that and the pattern of age distribution in the UK at a later date, however.

For now, hope you are all well :)

On my island in the sun

Monday, February 21, 2011
If you were stranded on a desert island, what ten things would you want in your pockets?

1) Sunscreen

2) A plastic sheet to make a dew trap with

3) A mirror for signalling rescue planes/ships

4) A machete (can I fit a machete in my pocket? :s)

5) My asthma meds

6) Some bottled water just to get me started!

7) My Hairbrush (I just don't feel human without brushed hair...nothing to do with looks!)

8) A sun hat

9) Some rope/string/enough to be useful till I can find a substitute if needed

10) Needle and thread

See, all practical stuff that I might actually need! I'm assuming there are coconut trees, or plants at all, and fish, so that I could at least eat coconuts or fashion myself a fishing spear to feed myself. If not, swap my hairbrush for food, please!

Sunday, 20 February 2011


Food makes me so sleepy. Nothing much to write about today. My lovely mother in law arrived in Liverpool to see my husband and I. We sat around drinking tea, generally taking the mick out of Ben (hehehehe) and then went for a yummy meal out. Tomorrow is our wedding anniversary, 2 years! To celebrate (and, you know, just because I suppose lol) we shall be going to the Jamie Oliver restaurant in town. Mmmm I can't wait, I've been waiting for my chance to go there. I hope it is as good as one would believe a restaurant baring the Jamie Oliver name would be!

However, that is for tomorrow. For now I have sleepy times :) Ciao for now!

Saturday, 19 February 2011

Six words

Cabin fever is no laughing matter!


In other news,  Ben bought me my anniversary present today. He bought me exactly the same thing as he bought me last year. Any other self respecting wife would be mortified, but as that thing happens to be The Sims 3 (any of my nearest and dearest could describe in detail the strong emotional bonds I create to my Sims and the trouble this can cause) only for the Xbox (as opposed to last years PC game...long story short the PC broke and we're on a much lower spec model which actually runs away wimpering in fear when I approach it with a sims game). Alongside this, his mum is coming up to visit tomorrow (yay!) and will be leaving on Monday, then on Tuesday we shall be venturing forth to the frozen north that is County Durham to visit my family there and shall not be returning until about this time next week...

Soo between simming it and family-ing it, I'm actually going to be a busy bexy over the next week. Never fear, I am commited to seeing NaBlo out! I've come this far... not sure I could keep it up for another month mind you but I shan't give up now!

So, expect tales of fun times to come and I wish you all well :)

Friday, 18 February 2011


Friday, February 18, 2011
Look up a favorite poem, then take the last line and use it as the first line of today's post.

I would...but poetry just doesn't play a huge part in my life. I don't have a favourite, and though I know of lines from poems, it wouldn't be correct to claim the poems from which they come as "favourites". It's like saying...tell us all about your favourite model. They pop up in magazines and on tv from time to time...I either think oh...she's pretty...or's a model? Some really famous ones I could even name for you! Kate Moss...Naomi Campbell...but I couldn't actually tell you anything about them. I can appreciate them...but I don't know a thing about them.

Poems are much the same for me. They pop up every now and then and I either get it or I don't. I either like it or I think it's a waste of good paper and ink. Usually the latter. Call me and uncultured swine if you will. Personally I prefer a good story that can keep me entranced for hours, a well composed piece of music that can evoke a mood so easily just playing in the background or a beautiful painting or photo to hang on the wall and be admired.

I wouldn't go looking for poetry, it usually finds me in whatever guise it chooses and I can appreciate it for the few moments that it is being read (by me or someone else...) but it's a bit of a flash in the pan experience. I wouldn't actively try to find it again, I just have no interest in a few abstract images painted in words for whatever reason.

Oh some can be fiendishly clever and some are marvellous in putting accross their point, it's just not something I would actively seek out. If I want to stretch my brain and flex its muscles, I'd rather read something factual, whilst relaxing with a good novel in which I can participate with the anticipation of the climax is indeed a fine thing. I find poetry, unless you are writing it yourself, to be a very passive experience, one which attempts to draw the reader in with its feelings and moods but ultimately excludes them.

But that's my opinion anyway. Millions of others actively enjoy poetry every day and have a much more positive and enjoyable experience of it than I do. It's not that I don't see the point as some would claim. I see the point, I just don't relate to it.


Oh the dilemas I face. I cannot decide how I want my hair done...

Sleek and sexy with a bit of length to it like this...

Or a bit shorter, and much messier (even in the cut, much more choppy) like this...

Any thoughts?

Thursday, 17 February 2011

Getting dressed

Thursday, February 17, 2011
What do you think about dress codes? Do they make sense in school, restaurants, or places of business? Why or why not?

I think dress codes are absoloutely fine, I don't see anything wrong with it. People may say that "oh, my right to wear what I like is enshrined by law" but when it comes to private property then the law be damned, apparently, and I don't see why not in this case. We have a right to self expression but if I've paid to see a film I'm gonna be pissed off if someone starts using their phone, and would expect said person to be asked to leave. Works on a similar kind of principle.

We all have uniforms to wear, for example to work. Here in the UK a school uniform is usually compulsory, or at least given as an option. It's used as an equalizer, and so jewellery etc is also usually restricted (although this is also for health and safety and to stop the school from coming under fire when Princess looses her grandmothers wedding ring. And yes, I knew girls at school who wore the wedding and engagement rings inherrited from grandparents if they could get away with it). It's also used to instil a sense of pride and belonging. This is similar to a work uniform, though that is also usually used to proect a certain kind of corporate image. Often it also serves a practical purpose. In my last job, it was ties and shirts for the guys, though women got a bit more free reign, but when I was a carer, of course, it was nursing tunics and disposable aprons.

So the reasons are many but are themselves uniform accross the board. It's when we get to dress codes in places of leisure and recreation that things can become a bit of a pickle. A few years ago, so called "hoodies" were all over the news, youths in hooded tops clogging up the streets of Britain and ultimately at the root of all of our anti social behaviour problems. So most "respectable" places have a ban on hooded tops, though this will be backed up by protestations of "if they cause trouble, they can't be easily identified by security camera" which is fair enough. But how then do you explain a pub with a ban on trainers? It will let trouble makers run away faster? Nope, it's the image they portray.

However, we do live in a society of double standards. A while back I read in a news article that there was outrage that an elderly gentleman was asked to remove his hat upon entering a shop which had a ban on hats. He would not, and thus was asked to leave. Not so long ago, my family went for a meal and on the door was a sign "no hoodies" however my dad has always used a hooded fleece top as a means of keeping warm if he's just ducking between buildings and there's no point in wearing a full out coat. He was not, however, asked to leave or remove the offending article.

Some people will be sticklers for the rules, but some people will see why the rules have been applied and use their common was quiet, that day in the restaurant, and I'd like to think we were obviously not the trouble making type, so the waitress used her discretion...

That said, despite that incident working in our favour, there have been pleanty of times when we've been turned away from a bar because someone didn't wear the correct footwear or trousers, and on the whole I think if we're going to have dress codes, they should be stuck by. Are they a good idea? Well I think there is the possibility of people taking it too far, but I've yet to see it, and until I do, I don't see how any harm can be done by them.

Wednesday, 16 February 2011


Today's topic...

Wednesday, February 16, 2011
What's the best way for you to blow off some steam?

Honestly? Write it down! I always feel better once I've let it off my chest! Other favourite ways of mine are eat it in chocolate (not the healthiest way!) or throw on angry music. Angry music is just the best when venting :)

Tuesday, 15 February 2011

I love...

I was already in bed by the time yesterday's prompt was out so since it's still up there already I think I shall write about that today, especially as it's something nice and lovely, which I promised!

Monday, February 14, 2011
Tell us about something you love today -- a person, a place, a movie, a season, anything.

Oooh but I love so many many different, lovely people and things and places ^_^ I love...

  • Ben! Goes without saying ^_^
  • My mum and dad...this should go without saying, but not everyone is lucky enough to have a good relationship with their parents. Thankfully, mine are awesome, so I'm safe there.
  • My little brother and sister. I never got that whole sibling rivalry thing, but then I think it kind of helped there is 5 years between each one of us. We're very loving and protective over each other.
  • My Gran, been a lot of times when she's litterally saved the day! A more loving and generous woman I don't think I've ever known, and given the number of extremely generous and loving women I know, that is a big thing!
  • My in laws! Like the sibling rivalry thing, I never got the 'bad in law' jokes...they just never applied, they have always been lovely to me.
  • My wonderful friends, especially Becky, Laila and Dee. There are others who could be counted amongst these, but these guys in particular are little stars!
  • Birds. I love their colourful feathers, musical voies and their inquisitive little faces. Show me a bird that doesn't look like it's smiling and I will give you a tenner. Even Eagles. Yeah sure...they look more like an evil grin that a joyful expression of glee but even so...When I get a nicer/bigger living environment I shall once again keep myself some lovely little feathered friends.
  • Fishies. They are much like birds, but in the sea, and cold blooded, and much more mysterious... Don't much care for the taste of them, however, unlike birdies, which I love the taste of.
  • Durham. Possibly the most beautiful city in England in my own good opinion :D
  • Flowers, in general, I love, and try to keep some flowers in my house whenever possible. Like birds, I can't wait to get somewhere with a garden, or at least a yard to keep some planters in! Potted indoor plants, however, I'm not so good with :(
  • Rocks, in any way. I find them endlessley fascinating. Find that as sad as you like :p
  • Pie. Who doesn't love pie?
  • Glastonbury. As in the city, not the music festival (which has never appealed that much to me). I find it to be much like Durham, but 'down south' and with a fancy magic hill instead of a Cathedral (though it has a wonderful abbey). It's the kind of town one can easily get lost in if one is so inclined. Wouldn't mind ending my days there.
  • Liverpool! Haha. As much as I complain about the damned place, it took a loooong time and lots of umming and aahing to decide to look into leaving the place all together. I became a woman in Liverpool, and I've had some of my most formative experiences. Despite the bad times, there have been gloriously amazing times too. I love Liverpool, and will take it with me wherever I go.
  • Pizza. Much like Pies. No one can dislike pizza, unless of course you have a food allergy, in which case...I'm terribly sorry...
  • Chocolate. 
Just to name a few...

Mmm Chocolate...I most certainly love you...

Monday, 14 February 2011

Happy Valentines!

Well, I've had a lovely Valentines evening (since the hubby be at work all day) with yummy home made chinese food and chocolate cake, nothing could be more romantic lol. However it is now Valentines night ;) so for everyone out there, I hope you've enjoyed today. Even if you're single, no reason why you can't have enjoyed it too!

Regular broadcasting to resume tomorrow


Sunday, 13 February 2011

Breaking my own rules

Today, I am going to break my own rules. Yes, Ben, you win, I'm posting a vitriolic hate filled rant. But I need to vent some steam, because it appears that people on the internet are stupid, discourteous, often just both...

Wait, Bex, it's taken you how long to figure this out?

I'm a member (as you may or may not have guessed by my little weight loss progress button on my side there) of My Fitness Pal. It's a useful wee tool for working out how many calories you need to consume to safely loose or gain weight. It offers the ability to track how much fat, carbs, protein, fibre, vitamins etc you are consuming, as well as calories. It has, simply put, a massive database which can be added to by members of food; branded, generic, freshly picked from the ground...if it isn't in there, grab the packet and add it in yourself.

Now, not everyone feels the need to be super strictly accurate, and I have no problems with that. They'll only add the ammout of calories because that's all they're bothered about tracking, and that's fine. But what annoys me is when such a food is added to the database and then they click "Add to database for other MyFitnessPal members to use" as opposed to keeping it in their own list of food for personal use (which is a perfectly viable option)

Has it not occured to you that other people might want more than just calories? Has it ever occured to you that if you are going to add this to the database for everyone to use and not just keep it to yourself that it would be courteous to check that the information is accurate?

I mean, sure, the nutritional values of products change all the time as food producers "improve" upon their recipe's, so the values for, I dunno, cornflakes, are going to be different today to what they were five years ago. That's understandable.

But what really pisses me off is when I'm planning my meals for the week and I've bought something new at the shop. I go home, go to my food diary for monday, say "add food" and do a search for "Asda Stir Fry with Bamboo Shoots and Water Chestnuts" and see "user added on 8th Feb 2011" and I do a little jump for joy because that was just the other day and so the value will most likely be up to date and accurate...and then I open it up to add to monday's meals and see that

1) half the information is missing because whoever added it couldn't be bothered to add the whole lot (in which case, why didn't you just add it to your own database?)


2) whoever added this cannot tell the difference between salt and sodium


3) people in general can't tell the difference between milligrams and grams.

The thing is, MFP asks for the ammount of sodium because the powers that be say a healthy daily sodium intake is 2000mg. That's milligrams, not grams. There's a whole world of difference there. 3 decimal points worth. 3 whole decimal points!

But you always get on there and see that people have been lazy, and where the back of the packet says "Sodium: 1g" they translate this in the database as "Sodium: 1mg"

It's not like you can change it. It's not like there's an option to change the mg to a plain old g, and it would make it so much more simple for me if they did but it isn't, it's in miligrams. And if you do not know how to change it from g to mg, have you never heard of google??? Just search for a converter, it's not taxing. I know it takes up precious time that you could be scoffing down your salty salty snacks, but if you're going to add it to the public database, then at least do us, the public, the courtesy of giving us correct and accurate data!

So anyway, seeing that everything was clearly not in order I grabbed my packet of stir fry and checked the back to get the missing values and saw that not only was the value of sodium given as grams but...actually wait...they didn't give the sodium value in grams or otherwise...they gave the salt value.

Now, I wouldn't be so pissed off except...the packet gives the value of both salt and sodium. You can't miss it. Sodium: 0.04g (thats 40mg, by the way) and salt: 0.1g (100mg)

So why, when the value of sodium is given, have you given the ammount of salt, then published it?

I often think that people must be in a state of denial. Oh it says 0.1g, that's much less than 100...well actually it's just the same, but 0.1 looks much better on your number chart in your head. Logic seems to have vanished. But whoever added this defies that theory because now they thing their fresh vegetable mix has almost twice as much sodium as it actually does.

It's not a case of being stupid, it's not a case of not knowing "all that magical science hocus pocus about chemicals and stuff...oooooooh....." it's about frigging common sense and courtesy! It asks for sodium...give it frigging sodium, not salt! And if you thought that sodium and salt were one and the same, surely the very fact that the numbers given are wildly different is a clue that you should just type in what it tells you to. Besides, why would any food company waste their time and yours giving you the same information twice but under different names? Before we know it we'll be seeing "Protein" and "Ammino Acids" all typed up for us on the back!

As for milligrams vs grams...we may not work with milligrams in the kitchen on a day to day basis, but anyone who measures out how much milk they put on their cereal or how much fizzy pop they've drunk in anyone day to add to their food diaries (and it's a lot of people) or hell have even just needed to make yorkshire frigging puddings and needed to add water to the mix should know the difference between ml and l. So why can't you figure out that there is a difference between mg and g. You seem to know the difference between g and kg! Not differentiating between milligrams and grams is as stupid as saying to someone "oh...I weigh 100 grams...I'm so overweight" - you never would do it, because it's ridiculous! No, same rules don't apply when measuring milligrams apparently...they're oh so interchangable with their big grammy brothers...



I really just needed to vent some steam because not matter how many times I post on the forums or in the "briefly describe your edits" section in the database, no one takes any bloody notice. It's not difficult. When it asks for sodium, give it sodium, when it asks for mg give it mg, when you go to post something on the public database, be courteous and post full and accurate data. Hell, even the MFP admins ask you to do so, but you ignore it. You're only fooling yourselve!

Till later folks, next time will be a much happier post!

Saturday, 12 February 2011

Just a lovely day

I was going to write about how dissapointed I've been in the past two series of The Tudors (or, as we call them in this house, The Sexy Tudors for obvious reasons if you've ever watched it). However, I'm feeling pretty cool and relaxed sat on the bed browsing blogs and listening to A Perfect Circle's Mer De Noms album (which, for some reason, always puts me in a chilled out relaxy mood, even with the more hard hitting tunes), and I really don't feel like writing a critical reviw.. I've had a lovely day today watching the Rugby with Ben and we're about to make Burrito's... followed by cherry pie...and custard. No, today has been too nice a day with the promise of an equally lovely evening to ruin with a long drawn out rant on the sheer ammount of sex they use in that damned show (did Henry VIII really bump uglies with Anne of Cleves after they were divorced? I mean, seriously? I know this hasn't necissarily been 100% about historical fact but...was there any need for that other than to lace the whole damned thing with yet more sexy goodness?)

So instead I leave you with this, and hope you've had a lovely lovely day too ^_^

Friday, 11 February 2011

Happy Hour!
Today, I am participating in Joelle's Happy Hour Blog Hop party, so to anyone who happens accross my little log of adventures I'd like to offer a big welcome :)

This month I've been participating in National Blog Posting Month, a challenge to post a blog entry every day of the month, and unless something majorly exciting is going on in my world, most of the entries have been based around the NaBloPoMo writing prompts. Today I'm afraid is another such day. February, despite being the shortest month of the year, is still happy to drag its feet. People are still recovering from the Christmas excess of spending and we're all quite house bound. Add to that the flurry of birthdays, Valentines and my wedding anniversary (only a week and 3 days and we will have been married for two whole years!) and February is a very tight month on the purse strings. There's been nothing much to report so far, and so NaBloPoMo in a way has been a bit of a blessing :)

This month's theme is "Character" and today's writing prompt is something that I think has effected most people one time or another, and has definitely had an affect on my own character.

Friday, February 11, 2011
Tell us about your first encounter with a bully, then tell us about your last one.

I couldn't tell you my definitive first encounter. Kids are cruel, they always will be, it's part of growing up that they should learn to treat people with respect but until they do learn this vital lesson, they will point out every little thing that is different or unusual or ugly to them, and they will take glee in being as mean spirited as possible. I've not spoken to anyone who hadn't at some point been victim of school ground teasing. But is this synonymous with bullying?

I think the one thing that sticks in my mind is the first time someone called me fat. When I told my parents they replied instantly with "you're not!" and when I look back at my school and childhood photos, they're right, I wasn't. What I was, was the tallest and bulkiest child in the class until the boys hit puberty, but it's something that I've never been able to shake off since, especially since in my teenage years I really did start to pile on the pounds. A stone for every year of my life!

My last encounter was, as you can probably imagine, much more vicious, cruel and calculated than kids teasing each other over being fat in the playground. It took a year and a half to build up to those levels of cruelty and would you believe it started out as a camraderie amongst a group of us who had been brought together by a passion for the subject we were studying? Somewhere, someone upset someone else, and even then I couldn't have told you what it was that caused the initial offense. It descended into a campaign to ostracize me and another friend of ours not only from their own clique (trust me, we quickly gathered we weren't welcome there and left them be) but from everyone else in our class.

It all came to a head about two weeks before we were supposed to go on a residential field trip to Spain for a week. I was getting anxious...after an incident on another field trip which I care not to get into, which had been reported to a number of my tutors, I was getting exceedingly nervous about having to spend a week sharing a big dorm style room with these girls (all the girls in one room, all the boys in another). I had no desire to stay locked up with these people in a foreign country for a week. All of these worries playing on my mind and still having to face the constant cold shoulders, sneers, cruel words and taunts every day in the meantime, I eventually decided to completely remove myself from the situation so it would no longer be a problem, in the most final and absoloute manner.

Thankfully it didn't come to that. After Ben put a firm and final stop to that nonesense, and a day spent completely in tears, I got the courage to call my parents and ask for their blessing to leave university alltogether. They knew I was on anti depressants and I made up a cock and bull story about not being able to cope with the pressures of the course, I didn't want to admit the real reason. My tutors said if I wished I could defer the year and come back, but I didn't want to put that kind of financial burden on my parents. I chose to leave and go to work instead, which I did, and I can tell you this - I missed studying like I'd never missed anything else, I missed my tutors who I had formed strong bonds with, I missed learning about things that I'm passionately fascinated by, but I have never ever felt a greater sense of relief. It really was like the weight of the Earth was taken off my shoulders.

Now I said before that these things have had an effect on my character. I believe I'm stronger for it. It has strengthened my resolve to help any and all who find themselves being ostracised and bullied, as if someone had stood up for me then maybe I'd still be there, who knows? I know that I don't want to return to study what I had been, because I just get upset thinking about it. I know that sounds melodramatic, but it really was that stressful for me at the time. What I want to do is help other people in whatever way I can. I've been seriously thinking about counselling as a career, and have been looking into the courses I'll need to take to do this. Thankfully there are some part time courses for adults near where Ben and I are hoping to move to, so my plan for now is to find work up that end of the world, then enroll in such a course.

Either way, I think it all has a happy ending. I'm making moves to carry my life ahead in a meaningful direction. We can't be bitter about these things forever after all, and life is nothing if not there to be lived through a full range of emotions, you have to take the good with the bad :)

Thursday, 10 February 2011


Thursday, February 10, 2011
Do you work too much?

No. I don't work at all. It's not for not wanting to, but you have to take what life throws at you!

Now we have that over and done with I feel like I've wasted a perfectly good blog entry, so it's meme time! ten things you love (or hate) about Valentines Day...

10) I love the excuse to have fancy chocolates!

9) I hate people hating on people who have found love ¬_¬

8) I love getting a special card from Ben telling me he loves me ^_^

7) I hate it when people belittle the gesture because "He's only doing it for valentines and it's expected"

6) I love the cliche's and cheesy little verses and platitudes found printed over everything

5) I hate it when people judge me negatively for loving the cliche's

4) I love the excuse for public display's of affection

3) I hate people telling me off for being affectionate with my husband!

2) I love to spread the love! I've always looked forward to Valentines day, even as a child, because of all the pretty hearts and the general celebration of love as a general thing

1) I hate people telling me I'm being superficial and I don't "really" know love if I only celebrate love on Valentines day, that I should celebrate it every day. I do celebrate it every day, but if I sent chocolates and cards and sweet nothings every day we'd all get very bored very quickly (And also very fat :p).  We should all celebrate our parents every day of the year but we do not advocate hatred of mothers day!

Wednesday, 9 February 2011

Just making touch with real life

The other week a gentleman on behalf of the landlord came to do some work on our kitchen door, bringing it up to spec for fire safety, but when he went to collect his tools he never came back. I can't deny it, I was mildly annoyed. We hadn't been informed anyone was coming, and then for him to vanish into thin air?

Anyhow, said same fellow came back today and revealed that he hadn't been back because in the five minutes he had been up to ask if he was ok to get in to do the work, someone had stolen his tools. He looked pretty stressed out, and revealed his boss had deducted the money for the new tools from his wages. That doesn't suprise me one bit at all and frankly I can understand why, but I do feel sorry for the guy now £100 down on his pay because someone couldn't keep their hands to themselves.

On a happier note, I finally started my super secret super duper project today! I haven't any money to get Ben something nice for our anniversary...well, it's pay day 5 days after and we'll probably do belated gifts and evening out, but it's nice to have something, so I have been making him a lovely little something to make him smile.

Also in happy news, we're probably be going back up to Durham for a few days over half term. Can't wait to see the family! Hoping that the weather will be fine too, as I have plans to take Ben out for a picnic ^_^ However, that is doubtful...but we can still hope! The idea behind it is that whilst he's seen all the main sights to be seen round and about, I have yet to share with him all the places I used to explore as a child, and I think he would appreciate it. Nothing like going off the beaten track, so to speak :)

Tuesday, 8 February 2011

What do you say when staring into the abyss?

Today's prompt reads as such:

Tuesday, February 8, 2011
Write an apology letter to yourself for not taking a chance you wish you would have taken in life, love, work, or...?

This has the potential to get maudlin pretty quickly, and at first I wasn't going to do it (I would have found something to write about somehow lol). However, after some thought, it really doesn't have to be as such and I don't see why it should have to.

Dear Bex,

Your life is far from perfect. You live in a little flat that is practically crumbling down around you. You have no qualifications of any worth and your CV is pretty shite. Somewhere between now and the age of 15 when you were top of the class for various different subjects something went wrong.

But it's not down to not taking chances. You've taken so, so many chances, and one way or another they've all fallen through for you. All of them except one, and that was the chance you gave Ben some five years ago in two weeks time, and you know very well that you very nearly didn't give him that chance.

There are people out there who will tell me that I'm ridiculous for thinking that this is something worthwhile. I don't live in any great comfort, haven't been on a holiday in five years (sorry, I love my family, on both sides, you're all fab people but coming to visit you all is not really a holiday) and we can barely pay the bills (though this is better than this time two and a half years ago when we point blank couldn't pay the bills at all). All our stuff is second hand or pass me downs.

Don't really care though. Life may be difficult, but I have someone to share it with. I don't know what it is I want to do with my life if I can be frank. I'm still trying to work out the answer to 'what can I do that I will be decent at that will keep my attention long enough so I as dont just give up at the first hurdle but will still earn me some money as opposed to no money'

Some people say they will leave marriage till they have 'succeeded' in whatever it is they have their eyes set on. I chose to ignore this. When push came to shove I made my choice as to what was more important to me. I could have left Liverpool and gone home with my folks and had I done that, had I not taken the chance to stay here, in all likelihood we couldn't have made our relationship work. I would rather be here now with someone who appreciates me and values what I can bring into his life than be working for some dead end job for a boss whome I'll never be good enough for, or for whome it doesn't matter what I do, there are no prospects. And when I get into work again, and find myself working for someone for whome I can never be good enough at a job which has no prospects, it won't matter because when I come home at night I am not greeted by an empty house or by parents who think I should long have flown their nest, but by someone who needs me as much as I need them.

I have the rest of my life to find money and material comfort, and what doesn't kill me now, and what hasn't killed me before now, has only served to make me (stronger/cynical/realistic...delete as appropriate). At the end of the day, I have something worth much more than £'s or certificates of education, and whilst it's easy to say "life is hard because I didn't make the right choices and turned down the opportunities and chances that I had" I'm afraid I have to dissapoint you in your search for vindication to your gloats and your ammusement in my failure and say instead "I'm actually rather satisfied with my life on the whole because the choices that I have made and the chances that I did take brought me a companion with whome I can stare into the abyss and say 'yeah fuck you too asshole' when things go to shit, and not everyone has the luxury of such a person"

So in conclusion, dear Bex, no, I will not appologise for not taking x chance or y chance, but I will thank you for having the strength to endure what you have, from financial hardships to feelings of abject humiliation before your friends who have accomplished where you have failed, because if you had succeeded where you wanted to in the first place you would have gone to Edinburgh and you wouldn't have met your wonderful Ben.



Monday, 7 February 2011

Short and sweet today

Monday, February 7, 2011
If you could take over the life of any character from a book or film and be them for a week, who would you choose?

It would have to be, without a doubt, Polgara the Sorceress from David Eddings' Belgariad and Mallorean series.

Till Later Folks!

But seriously though...she's pretty much experienced everything you can do, she is "the paramount lady" of all the world (her world, anyway). And she can pretty much do whatever she likes. I think I'd like to be able to do as I please with almost unlimited power for a week. And since I'm assuming I'd get to have all of her experience stored up in my brain from having taken over her (and it is experiences that define a character in my opinion) then I'm thinking a week or so in the life would be sufficient. Like...if I became Harry Potter, for example, I think I'd loathe to give it up, but if I'm a character that has pretty much seen just about everything there is to, then a week would be enough to satisfy my curiosity before returning to my own mundane life.

Also, I'm finding it quite difficult to write because, frankly, as hard as life is and can be, I don't think I really would like to swap it for anything. If it changes of its own accord, then that is one thing, but being transplanted into something else for a week? Why torture yourself with knowing you've had a tiny glimpse of something you'll never be able to have wholly anyhow.

I'm happy to live out my life as Bex, a character in my very own storybook, and happy to narrate it here for you to participate in :)

Sunday, 6 February 2011

Giving up control

I probably don't do myself any favours by staying up late, but I suffer with sleepless nights. When I suffer with sleepless nights, I find I do not have the energy to cope with anything. I loose will power (I just don't have the energy to fight my urges) and drive (I haven't the energy to push myself). It is not the same as purposefully depriving myself of sleep..for example, if I were to stay up late to finish a project off and then get up early because I had somewhere to be, or was expecting a guest. In such cases, I don't lack energy, I just feel mildly drained.

There are various reasons that I might have sleepless nights. Sometimes its just a case of not being able to drift off, and I lie awake for hours. The mind only begins to wander, which makes it worse. Recently, the reason has been sheer blind panic. I have begun waking up again every time I just start to drift off. For some reason, the one little part of me that is still vaguely concious registers that it is, I don't know, closing down, and I wake up gasping for breath and braking out in a sweat. It's like subconciously I'm afraid of going to sleep for some reason.

Does that even make sense? The concious part of me drags myself awake again because subconciously I'm afraid of going to sleep?

Anyway, when I do finally go to sleep I'm bombarded with horrific dreams. The other night, I returned to a place I recognised in my dreams (not from real life) only it had been bombed out. Inside were bodies, and they were being tended to by hundreds and hundreds of spiders of every kind. Not eaten or defiled in anyway, but lovingly tended to. Didn't detract from the horror of being surrounded by corpses in a place I obviously had some kind of attachment to, however.

Other dreams follow the same kind of pattern, although the spiders were certainly new. I wonder if it's my recent but sudden occupation with a fear of dying (after a couple of recent deaths in the family) that's done it. I thought I was over it but evidently not. I also wonder if the sleeplessness and crazy dreams are simply explained in terms of my mind not wishing to give up control of my body and become passive and powerless as in death. Perhaps it is control in general that is the issue. I am a controlling person, and when I don't have a percieved level of control I don't fare well. There are a number of things that seem out of my control at the minute, and the sleepless nights and dreams of people dying uncontrollably around me could just be another manifestation of this general feeling of powerlessness.

Either way, I think it would be a good idea to learn to become more open and accepting of the things I have no power over. I hear meditation is good for this, but I can barely manage more than a few minutes. Oddly enough, it is a lack of control over my wandering mind and thoughts that are the issue. I used not to have a problem, but with age comes responsibility and one minute you're drifiting off and the next minute, ooh, I forgot to take tonights chicken out of the freezer to defrost.

Well, whatever the answer is to my little sleep issue, and whether or not I can learn to be a little less controlling, I certainly hope I can rectify the problem soon. My neck is absoloutely killing me, and this only happens after multiple nights of tossing and turning. It would be nice to get a decent nights sleep to iron out all these kinks! Ouch!

Indulging my creative streak

Today I've been quite ill and have spent the day nursing a bad head. The kind of bad head that makes close up work such as embroidery or beading  (my current two crafts of choice) a real pain in the...well..head.

Indeed, today has been spent watching movies with Ben (specifically Superman Returns and The Mummy) playing games (Haven't played Dragon Age in a while, quite enjoyed it) and taking frequent naps to try and over come said bad head. It's not been exactly an exciting day at all, but it has been nice, and it is always lovely at the weekend to share my time with Ben since he doesnt have to work.

Anyhow I just checked out the time and saw that I had twenty minutes left to NaBlo. So to NaBlo I go to pick up today's prompt and it appears there was none :( still, as I had a fun day yesterday and wrote about 'real life' I can at least use yesterdays prompt :)

Friday, February 4, 2011
Tell us about three ways you express your creativity.

1)  Well as you already well know I dabble in some crafty bits and bobs. I've been making jewellery for the past couple of years and over the summer I started cross stitch. However, I got bored of cross stitch...I mean, don't get me wrong, I love the act of creating something beautiful with needle and thread. The repetitive act of bringing the needle in and out is very relaxing, and it is a complete and utter joy to see cotton, silk and wool bloom in beautiful designs accross a bare sheet of canvas or cloth. I get the same feeling of joy from watching someone else paint or draw, and actually spend hours watching instructive video's on youtube because...well because I'm sad like that. But I find it relaxing, almost meditative to watch. However, I have a mental block in that I find it very wierd to create something myself unless it has a practical purpose, and embroidery can become a cushion or a purse or some such thing, jewellery can be worn. I can't paint or draw because it seems vain to me to do something to hang on my own wall. I painted a peacock in sumi-e that I loved and had to give it away as a gift, I just can't do it. The one painting of mine that I do have up (which is a bit crap anyway lol) is there at Bens insistance, and is tucked away safely in the hallway.

Anyway, I was talking about why I got bored of cross stitch ^_^ it's not that I got bored as such, it's not even that I object to following a given pattern, it's that having to count each individual little square just totally eradicates all the relaxation for me. If I have something on my mind that is really heavy and hard core that I want to not think about for a while then it's perfect to take the mind away, but stitching freestyle is much more relaxing as my mind can wander. And lets face it, it's much more creative and expressive than crosstitch. And besides, I love running my finger over the textures afterwards, and cross stitch in general is pretty flat and...none texturful lol.

2) Sometimes I write. I do NaNoWriMo as I've previously mentioned, and last year I finally finished it. I don't show people my writing because I'm terribly self concious. I could go into why I'm self concious, but I'm too self concious to do that :p

That's a shame. My old English teacher made me promise to send him a book as soon as I published my first novel, he was always very encouraging. A shame not everyone was. Ben is, being the writing type himself but given he has a degree in writing I feel even more sub par next to him. He's my husband and he's only ever read perhaps one chapter of anything I've ever written.

Still, I don't write for the recognition. If I did perhaps I would have listened to my old teacher. I write as a form of escapism and because I love to flex my linguistic muscles in a way that day to day communicative tasks don't give the chance for.

3) Through my living space. I don't really have the chance to do that at the minute and I've also mentioned that before, but I was the typical teen throwing god knows what up against the wall from band posters to projects brought home from art class. All manner of dream catchers, fairy lights and mobiles hung up. I'm older now and have more sophisticated tastes. A vase of fresh flowers, a tasteful oil burner, decorative candles. I like people to be able to come into my home and know that it is indeed mine and not copied and pasted from "better homes" magazine or translated from the latest DIY show.

I may attempt (and fail I'm sure lol) to adhere to some sort of resemblance of fashion in my clothes because the me I present to the outside world is the me I have to present to prospective employers and anyone I may have a professional, working relationship with. I do not know who it is I may meet whilst out and about, and there are rules of conduct to be followed when participating in society. But my home is my sanctuary, and when someone comes to my home it is me they must click with, not the other way round. They may be invited guests, but they have none the less accepted my invitation instead of turning it down. I cannot always dress myself any which way I would prefer, but I can bloody well dress up my home to reflect what it is that makes me me!

Anyhow, there you have it, three ways I express my creativity. I'm 17 minutes late BUT I started yesterday so it counts ;)

Friday, 4 February 2011

Haunted sewing machine

So, the lovely Becky came to my flat today to help me get to grips with that old sewing machine my folks brought down on Tuesday. I had been itching to get started so I could start sewing up my pretty new cushions, and it's been sat, looking at me all week.

So we started with the basics, and Becky showed me how to thread it up. Pretty simple. I then go on to sew up a couple of pieces of random fabric my Gran sent down to practise on. I was amazed to see that i could sew in a straight line (something that had always eluded me at school and put me off even glancing sideways at a sewing machine for ten years or so).

Encouraged by my progress, I repositioned my fabric to have another go. As I was doing so, the needle began to move all by itself...slowly at first but then by the time I got my head around the fact it was going at a hundred miles an hour, bam bam bam in one spot. I of course, panicked.

"Becky! What's it doing?!?!"
"Are you pressing the pedal by accident?"

For a split second we sit a little confused, litterally a split second before the common sense to unplug the pedal from the machine came to me. And then...

"Can you smell burning?"

It was like toast.

So now I am left with an old sewing machine that I am unable to use thanks to its fried up pedal, unless I find a midget slave to stand by my coffee table and turn the wheel for me while I guide the fabric. Or just a regular sized slave, only kneeling down.

The day was not lost though, and as always I had a lovely time with my guest. I even got to model her hat. God knows I love to pose, so even though she's already posted this on her blog I'm going to post it again here.

I know becky thinks her photography skills are a bit sub par, but I think this photo is very slimming, and so has put me in a great mood, especially considering I put on *mumble* pounds this week thanks to meals out with parents and a naughty little takeaway Ben and I had earlier. Still, I'm pretty sure given how quickly it came on I'll be able to loose it again by next week, and for that reason (and for reasons of shame) I'm not logging it on MFP. Cheating? Perhaps. But we just went grocery shopping and have stocked up on healthy stir fry, salad and pasta type dishes of healthy goodness. God bless the humble salad!

So anyway getting back to point. Yes. Lovely day, sewing machine caput. Will get to sewing cushion covers by hand for now till we can rectify the situation. Gotta get on the exercise bike cause I'm a fatty.

Ooooh Jonny Wilkinson just came on from the sub benches to play for theres someone I could loose some weight with...ahem..

Yes tonight is the first match of the Six Nations rugby tournament. I'm not a huge sporting girl, though I love my F1, but I dabble in a little football (Proper football, as in, that sport where you kick a ball with your foot :p) and rugby from time to time and Ben and I are having quite a time watching England tear up the Welsh. There's only one minute left and we're 7 points ahead. I hate to be pre emptive but....well, it's a good start to the year of sport for English teams, anyway ^_^

And with that, I leave you for now. Oh, wait, yes, there we go. England beat Wales. *happy dance*

Thursday, 3 February 2011

The Internet can read my mind....

I have a million and one things I really need to do. I need to wash up. I need to chop the vegetables for dinner and get the potatoes on the hob to parboil. The laundry needs doing (as always). I still haven't sorted the kitchen cabinets out (been promising to do that to myself for at least two weeks now). I haven't started that super top secret thing that I'm supposed to do, though there's time yet for that. I haven't even gotten round to having lunch yet, and all that is is a frigging pot noodle. Hell, I was going to play on the xbox for a little while, but I even managed to put that off. Nope, seems all I've done today is procrastinate.

Still, I have things to do so here I am to write my third NaBlo post, and thanks to my slow day of putting things off I'm back to running to the site for their daily prompt.

Thursday, February 3, 2011
Tell us seven things you do when you procrastinate.

I shit thee not! See, it says right there...the internet is reading my mind...

So for your delectation and delight, I shall tell you about all of the wonderful and unproductive things I've done today whilst putting productive and useful things off.

1 - I have repeatedly checked my email in the hopes of seeing a "Thanks for your application, we think you are a perfect candidate so you have the job come and start whenever you like and we'll pay you whatever you want" kind of email. Of course, such an email has not come through, but I'm still working on that ^_^

2 - I have lounged around in the bath. It's so comfortable and warm, it just sends me off to sleep (which is useful when I've only just gotten up out of bed)

3 - I have created yet another playlist. Today, I made a playlist of all my favourite complete albums. Can't have too many playlists!

4 - I have lurked around on the forums at MFP

5 - I have lurked around the blogs at MFP

6 - I repeatedly go back and forth to facebook to see if anyone else I know has done anything interesting. Usually, since people are at work at this time, there is nothing of interest to report, but I'll do it anyway just incase something like today happened where my cousin announced that she is now engaged. Doesn't matter if our families are kind of estranged, I still need to know these things!

7 - The BBC news website is like procrastination much stuff happening in the many random articles about ready made blood vessels that can be stored in the fridge for later use (by Vampires for straws, I assume) or life expectancy in Sierra Leone (pitifully poor, sadly, though not due to Vampires)

And this pretty much outlines what a day is like for me if I get into a procrastination cycle. See, I'll start off at number one then go through each one in turn (except the bath bit...I only do that once...) and then I have to start again to see if, in the past half our or so, someone has emailed's viscious and silly but once I get it into my head to do it, it's a cycle.

I think I should probably put out applications for factory assembly line type work, as clearly I'm a "lather, rinse, repeat" kind of girl.

But for now, I must leave you again until tomorrow. I have emails to check before I go and do the dishes.

Wednesday, 2 February 2011


I've spent most of today getting angry, terribly terribly angry, and upset, with my landlord and one of his minions. I could rant here about it, but I have promised not to turn this into a harsh blog of ranting. Ben would only win. So, since it is the challenge to write a post every day, I turn to NaBloPoMo's prompt for the day for my inspiration.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011
Think about someone who annoys you. Write a list of everything you don't like about them, and then write a list of all the things that you're grateful that they've shown you about yourself.

Oh dear. It looks like however I do this, ranting is going to be involved. However, I shall try my best to be good.

Think about someone who annyos me. Well, sadly I'm a terribly irritable person. I could write a paragraph about most of the people I know regarding what they do that I don't like. Most people will annoy me once or twice a day.

Thankfully, I eventually learned from my prevous mistakes. In other words, I realised a few years back that I couldn't just continue to push people and 'get back' at them for every minor transgression and little annoyance. Ok to me they weren't just little annoyances, they were big annoyances that every one else thought were small. We all get annoyed at people and this is why we gossip and bitch and rant to our peers. I get annoyed at Ben so I rant it to my mum. I get annoyed at my mum so I rant to Ben. It's just the great circle of life.

Of course if you have a blog then you can just go ahead and rant to the world, but as I learned, that can end up burning you. That is why I'm trying my best to keep this blog nice, with a pleasant overtone. I'm not promising I won't moan, but I will not rant. I will also not start picking on individuals. Even if I didn't name them, the last thing I want is for a friend to read this and become paranoid that I am talking about them. Nor would I want an individual who I was talking about to use the fact that it is up here for all to see as a weapon against me.

So I shall tell you what people in general do that annoys me. That way you can all be upset and paranoid together!

They (or you haha) seem to run headlong into ridiculous situations. You fall over and cry about it and you don't even attempt to see a way out. Often logic stares you in the face and you will ignore it, or complain about it. You are all terribly competitive, you have to be the best, and everyone has to know about it too. Other things that annoy me are self centredness, which seems to be epidemic amongst the general population, huge ego's, and above all else, people who put you down without provocation. For example, my last day at work before I went on leave to get married, all I seemed to get from one particular member of staff who clearly didn't 'believe' in the institution of marriage was put downs...making sure I knew that half of all marriages end in divorce (I don't even know if that's the correct figure, but it was the one he was quoting). You know, that whole pushing your belief system on someone else or tearing down theirs for no justifiable reason...yeah...that annoys me so so so much.

So yes. Humanity. You all frigging annoy me. From my closest confidants to little children in the street, I confess, you irritate the hell out of me. I can pretty much guarantee that something you have said or done will have at some point irritated me.

And now for the dose of humility. The things I am so, so greatful to you all for teaching me about myself:

1 - I have issues with addressing the problems in my life. Either I am too scared to do something about them, or I just don't see a way out. More often than not, it's just laziness...the way out is not easy so I can't be bothered. I can spot yours from a mile off, I can role my eyes and scoff, but when it comes to mine? Na ah. If I were one of you, I would be seriously irritating my own good self.

2 - I'm a terribly jealous person. If I am annoyed at you for being competitive, it is only because I am jealous, and I don't like the feeling of jealousy. I try to avoid it, it makes me feel sick and ill and anxious. I have enough problems with anxiety as is, so I avoid situations in which I can become jealous. However, when people actively try to rub it in my face that they have something I want, or that they are better or I worse, whether or not they conciously do this, it just annoys and upsets me.

3 - I am the most self centred person on the planet. I think I do a pretty good job of either compensating for it or hiding it, but either way I know one day the bubble will burst and people will be sick of catering to me. Still, at least I know it and can try to make up for it. Either way, such is my self centredness that when other people try to muscle in on the action (as opposed to waiting their turn...which I must designate) it annoys me. Because it's my show you're stealing.

4 - You have taught me one good thing about myself, if nothing else. You have taught me that underneath all of the above character flaws and all my sheer laziness, I still do have a spark of passion in there for something. I often moan that I don't know what to do with my life, I lack drive and ambition and I have so many silly little interests. I am the very essence of "jack of all trades master of none". Indeed, if it weren't for you guys annoying me so much, I would probably have a fitting argument that I just don't care at all about anything much. But clearly I do, even if they are somewhat intangible concepts such as marriage and love and spirituality as opposed to solid firm things that you can hold in your hands and measure, such as cold hard cash or how many promotions you've had or how many endangered species your particular conservation project has brought back from the brink.

So yes. I am greatful to you and your judgmental ways for making me realise I actually do hold strong convictions and beliefs and passions. I just haven't found a way to apply them yet :p

Tuesday, 1 February 2011

More things to play with!

My dearest parents came to visit today, and with them they brought me a little gift. By little I mean bloody heavy of course...

Yup, I finally have my grubby mits on my great nana's old Singer. My first thoughts upon seeing this was "phew, that doesn't look too complicated!". However, having been sat regarding it for a while I'm still rather intimidated by it. For this reason, I think I'm going to pussy out and wait till Becky comes to visit on Friday before I give it a whirl ^_^

Now, my Gran being my Gran, and I love her dearly for it, she sent all manner of goodies with it. It turns out it does come with an insturction manual (still too pussy to try it my own though) but also all manner of bits and bobs. I believe she had removed these old worn bags full of 'fabric related stuff' from the sideboard and packed them up for me. Within said bags are some really useful things, like spare needles for the machine, an embroidery hoop with skeins and skeins and skeins of embroidery silk (turns out my great nan must have been quite the embroiderer herself, which makes me kind of sad that she died when I was so young). Also there were some random little treasures. A "daisy maker" for example. Thank God my nan had the foresight of keeping the instructions with it mind you, or I wouldn't know the name. It did puzzle me when I first saw it. I shall certainly give it a go at some point. There was, of course, what to me is a bit of junk but I'm sure to my nan was something that "would come in useful" some day. Odd bits of wool and string flying everywhere. Old magazine cut outs - a couple of crochet articles for example. Why my gran sent me those I'll never know, but perhaps once again Becky can make some vague use out of them on Friday, I would hate for them to go to waste after they have survived all this time.

There were some truly random little bits too. 2 plastic marbles and an old Robinsons Golden Shred marmalade pin badge with a Gollywog. Being politically correct of course, said pin badge will never get to leave the house :p or have people finally gotten over that yet? Who knows?

Anyway, I have a bottle of sparkling wine and a bottle of champers too, a xmas present my uncle sent but as of yet have been unable to collect. Will certainly be saving that for the anniversary festivities later this month :) She also sent a tin of biscuits. I swear, my diet is wrecked this week, especially after that yummy burger I had for lunch...ho hum, as my dad said "we only see you twice a year"

That's a tad overexaggerated of course but the feeling is there :)

Oh, I would of course like to point out that, hooray, yes, it is my first NaBloPoMo and I have succeeded in posting a post! One down, 27 more to