Saturday, February 28, 2009

Happy Bloggy Birthday

It's my blog's birthday today. I gave it a card but forgot the cake, so I had to go and find one on Flickr ... hope it likes it.

birthday cupcake
If I am honest I really want to give it a makeover but I am so skint - MOT/car tax due tomorrow and so fussy - can't decide what look/style I like AND can't get one of these freebies to work.
It seems amazing that I've kept going with this - things never keep going for this length of time ... started in February 2005, that makes it 4 years old, that's right isn't it? I don't think I managed to keep a diary going for 1 year as a youngster, never mind 4 years! I think that it kept me sane in 2005 - the stress of planning and catering the wedding and then Simon and "the job"! So, I'm going to keep plodding on with it and see if I can't get it up to it's 5th birthday ~ it'll be able to start school then ;o)

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Notes to self

Why oh why do you always leave it until the very last minute to book the MOT?? **Note to self** The car tax is due on Monday - do something now!!

Walkers new Chocolate and Chilli crisps ~ they're trying them out. You love chocolate and chilli. You tried them out! They are FOUL **Note to self** Stick to cheese and onion, they won't make your tongue shudder.
Your hair needs colouring! Your hair needs cutting. It's making you look that age you don't want to talk about that you're going to be in August. **Note to self** Ring "Hannah the hairdresser!"
The handle has just broken on your toothbrush! New toothbrushes were on the shapping list last week. You never leave your toothbrush this long. FFS?!?! **Note to self** Buy a new toothbrush Joanne!

Monday, February 23, 2009

Talking about him on the Internet when he has no idea I am .... ssssh!!!

Fi stole this one from Dooce. I stole it from her ~ doubly outrageous!

What are your middle names? Mine is Elizabeth - after my Nana ... at least I didn't get the her other name - Ethel! His middle name is Andrew ... both his brother (John after their dad) and his sister (Mary I think) were given middle names - for some reason (????) he wasn't ... so he chose his own as a teenager.
How long have you been together? Since September 1999 - my longest relationship and his too I believe.
How long did you know each other before you started dating? Technically we never dated, we met on Yahoo! Chat, he was living on the Isle of Man, I was in the SE of England and by the time we met in person, being a floozy, I just moved him straight in!
How old are each of you? I am 39, staring down the barrels of 40. He is gutted that for two weeks of May and the months of June, July and half of August he will be 12 years older than me.
Whose siblings do you see the most? His, H is just up the road in Balham.
Which situation is the hardest on you as a couple? His job - which he hates.
Did you go to the same school? No, I was born in South Wales and went to school in Gorseinon. He went to school in Brixton.
Are you from the same home town? No (see above) Simon is Clapham born and bred, I am from a small town near Swansea called Pontarddulais (pont-arr-th-ill-ice). Simon calls it pont-ar-diddly-ice! We fight about this!
Who is smarter? I wear better shoes than he does - enough of an answer for you?
Who is the most sensitive? Me, simple answer really.
Where do you eat out most as a couple? This might sound a daft answer but France. In general here we don't eat out. On holiday we do.
Where is the furthest you two have traveled together as a couple? Northern Spain.
Who has the craziest exes? Him
Who has the worst temper? *cough* HIM! *cough*
Who does the cooking? We used to share the cooking fairly equally, now he does the majority of it. I am eternally grateful for this BUT wish I had more time i.e. could do more of it.
Who is the neat-freak? Neither of us to be honest.
Who is more stubborn? Him!
Who hogs the bed? Apparently *rolls eyeballs dramatically* me - I remain unconvinced.
Who wakes up earlier? Me ... I wish I didn't but!
Where was your first date? We went to the Hollywood Bowl restaurant in Gillingham. Surprisingly I don't remember what we ate. I ALWAYS remember what I ate!
Who is more jealous? Me
How long did it take to get serious? Once we met in person, next to no time. Did I mention up there I am a floozy?
Who eats more? Him, he's 6' 2" with hollow legs. Unfortunately it looks like I ate more because my metabolic rate is stuck at stop.
Who does the laundry? I do. He's not allowed as he chucks everything in together and then ALL of it in the tumble dryer!
Who's better with the computer? Umm ... about equals I'd say.
Who drives when you are together? Him, though quite often I find my feet reaching for the brake *coughs under breath* Schumaker!
So there you go, me and him, explained/moaned about. Got some answers of your own? Comments are just *points* down there ;o)
p.s. psst, seeing as this has already been stolen twice ... feel free to nick it from me!!

Sunday, February 22, 2009


So, this weekend has mostly been about re-getting to know Photoshop Elements. Playing around with scraps and layers and making new headers, desk tops and just putting pictures together. VERY THERAPUTIC! I need to go and do something else now before my eyes turn square.

fizzy header 500
desktop for fi tech support
snipped and snapped white header 720 x 360
walking home
12" x 12" square in fact!
12" x 12" with knobs and bows on.
Gers 2008 flat
But hey it's keeping me off the drugs and the alcohol!!

Unconscious Mutterings #317

I say ... and you think ... ?

Carpet :: burn
William :: Tell
Oh! :: No!
Board game :: backgammon
Sunlight :: SPF
Delay :: flight
Winner :: loser
Concubine :: Emperor
Comatose :: deeply asleep
Satisfy :: enough
Do some muttering of your own here.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

**mingle, mingle, mingle**

That’s My Answer’s Monthly Mingle: February 2009

There's some mingling going on over at That's My Answer ~ come on over and be social!

Thursday, February 19, 2009

The new FOOD commandments

My creation

This month's Olive magazine has an article entitled "The Food Commandments" ~ interesting! Interesting for more than one reason. Commandment ~ something that must be obeyed; a command or edict. Should there be rules that must be obeyed in food? Shouldn't food be about likes/dislikes more than rules? Anyway let's put my need to ignore the rules to one side and look at what Olive suggests as the new commandments.
Thou shall not drink fancy bottled water
I'm not sure about this one ... at home we don't drink "fancy bottled water" ~ because let's face it there'd be no money for Navarra if we were drinking San Pellogrino every day. But I do buy bottled mineral water as it saves me filtering it ... the water here is so hard, it's enough to make me shudder. The water doesn't taste like this in Swansea. But back to the point I generally agree with this and if I am eating a meal out I shall not be drinking fancy bottled water I shall be asking for a glass of soda or tap water.

Thou shall not bow down to big brands but shop for price
This one's a bit harder - there are some things that have to be a certain brand ... ketchup and baked beans by Mr Heinz, rich tea biscuits by Mr Mcvitie, instant coffee by Mr Nescafe but that's about it. I am happy to schlep off to Lidl for the rest of my shopping - their Bavarian ham is to die for.

Thou shalt be more wary of thy carbon footprint
By this they meant in terms of not flying or driving when you go on foodie breaks. "Foodie breaks" - I wish! I get to go to France on holiday and the only reason I can afford that is that I get to stay with my lovely parents - in exchange for doing all the cooking whilst I am there - and when we eat out we go Dutch. But I do use the boat, not the plane. However having said all that I am going to Rosas in June and I have no doubt it will be quite foody.

Thou shalt remember that eating in is the new eating out
I love eating out BUT I also love eating in. I think that there is notheing nicer than feeding family/loved ones/friends and seeing them get pleasure out of the food that you are giving them. We even (with a little help) catered our own wedding.
Kev's food!

Thou shalt shun food waste and remember "leftovers are cool"
I have always thought this and I am officially know in school as the leftover girl. My lunches are always either leftovers or homemade soup.

Thou shalt embrace shoulder of lamb as the new fillet steak
This I think is all about using the cheaper cuts of meat, taking a little more time with them, treating them gently and enjoying the sense of achievement that "real" cooking gives you. Not that I don't like fillet steak and chips BUT with fillet it's all about the texture and let's face it you're not going to get the same flavour as you would with say pot roasted brisket. I love shoulder of lamb - my mum would squeal about the fattiness of it but it's brilliant for cawl - see March 1st post for Auntie Marg's recipe - actually it's better with shoulder of mutton but that's really hard to get these days!
Thou shalt honour home-grown and homemade above all else
I suppose this is half true for me ... homemade yes, definitely. I'd much rather make everything myself than buy something ready prepared from the local supermarket. I have a teaching assistant in school who buys everything ready prepared ready to be zapped in the microwave. EVERYTHING! Lasagne, pizza, fish pie, toad-in-the-hole, she even buys burgers already in the bun to zap!! NO I say NO! Why, when it's so easy to chuck a couple of handfuls of minced beef/pork/lamb in a bowl, mix in an egg yolk, some breadcrumbs and whatever herbs and spices you fancy, mix and grill. And then you know what you're eating. It's nutritious and healthy and not crap for you.
Unfortunately home-grown is not as easy. I do grow herbs and this year I am going to try tomatoes on the balcony in grow bags BUT what would happen during the summer? It's all very well and good to ask a neighbour to water your courgettes if you're away for 10 days BUT when you're away for 6 weeks, it's a bit of a cheek. So no, not home-grown I'm afraid. However when I am away for the 6 weeks lots of the veg there is home-grown ... all the usuals ~ onions, courgettes, beans, tomatoes, figs and cherries. Farmer Don is on the case.
Thou shalt support the local
Yes, oh yes. Local producers are the bees knees. I go to the farm shops in Rainham and at Broadditch Farm - love their Prince Charmings @ squash time. I pick Kentish strawberries in the summer and I'm anyones for a farmer's market. I find invaluable.

Thou shalt go just a little bit veggie
That's not so difficult for me - I was a vegetarian for about 6 yrs in my late teens and early twenties until a late night pub crawl and a visit to Steak by Night that brought me back to my senses. So I like vegetarian food - well until you mention tofu that is but I digress. Vegetables are quite often the star of the show when I eat, be it in a curry, roasted with balsamic vinegar or just a damn good salad.
My husband however is a whole other ball game! When we first lived together Simon counted tomatoes/onions on a pizza as vegetables. He would eat carrots, peas, sweetcorn and pizza topping and that was about it. We've progressed in the last 10 years. He'll manage parsnips and beetroot now, green beans and occasionally a Brussels sprout BUT that's about it. He hates squash (??), wont touch courgettes (??) and won't even try asparagus or sprouting broccoli (???). And then there's the lentils/beans/pulses part of vegetarianism - lentils probably, the rest of it - only if it's in chili CON carne.
Thou shalt wise up to food jargon

Organic? Free-range? Do we believe what's on the label? What in fact is the difference between a "free-range egg" and "an egg from birds that have been allowed to range freely"? And which should I be buying? Check the Internet I say.
So, for the main part, I like these new food commandments but I think that I'd like to add one of my own ...
Thou shalt love and enjoy the food you eat!
What do you think?

I ♥ James Corden in red frocks

I missed the Brits but I wish I'd seen it just to see James Corden dancing in a red frock!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Live, love, laugh, LIQUOR!


I don't feel that I should need a drink mid week but after speaking to my stupid doctor for 20 minutes and him telling me that waking up too early is because of the stress of work and "I really should give up my job and go and do something less stressful because after all money isn't everything" I could really do with a bloody large B & C.
Stupid arse that he is!?!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

10 warning signs that you may be addicted to Facebook

1. Facebook is your home page.
2. You update your status more than twice a day.
3. You have over 500 "friends" half of whom you've never actually met.
4. As soon as you step away from your computer you're on FB on your phone.
5. You are a FB stalker.

You qualify as a FB stalker if you
a) click on someone's profile more than once a day even if they haven't messaged or tagged you in a photo.
b) have dragged and dropped more than 3 FB photos (not from your own profile)
c) actually go to a place mentioned on someone's page in hopes of seeing them in real life...creepy!

6. You change your profile picture more than a 12-year=old girl.
7. You have checked your FB page while reading this article.
8. You clean up your "wall" so it looks like you spend less time on FB.
9. You are a member of more than 10 groups and respond to every event invitation "attending" even if you have no intention of going.
10. You change your relationship status just to mess with people.

Simon informs me I should be looking for signs!

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Unconscious Mutterings #316

I say ... and you think ... ?

Be mine :: valentine, pah
Ecstatic :: very happy
Orderly :: tidy
Sebastian :: Faulks
Sore :: hands
Don’t need :: to go to work tomorrow! Whoop :o)
Rockstar ::
Tinfoil :: aluminium, pronounced al-you-min-ee-um ;o)
Addiction :: battle
Where? :: Why?
Do some muttering of your own here.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009


Le laquet

In the middle of winter, I want to be there in the sunshine.

Monday, February 09, 2009

snip snap

snip snap, originally uploaded by Laquet.

I have a newish blog.
One of those take a photo everyday for a year blogs.
Unfortunately my unorganised arse failed at the first hurdle i.e. I didn't get my act together in time and only started it on January 4th, so I'm going to have to keep going beyond the 31st of December.

So pop on over to ~ Laquet ~ Snipped and Snapped ~ if you get a chance, leave a comment - even if it's only to suggest something I could snap ;o)

Sunday, February 08, 2009

Sunday afternoon

Sunday afternoon part 1, originally uploaded by Laquet.
Sunday afternoon part 2
Sunday afternoon part 2, originally uploaded by Laquet.

Sunday afternoon part 3
Sunday afternoon part 3, originally uploaded by Laquet.

Ruth and I play this game whereby we pretend that we don't care who wins when Wales and Scotland play in the rugby. And I suppose I don't mind as much if Wales lose to the Scots/French/Irish as I do when they lose to the team that my husband supports. But I do care, so whilst I sipped hot chocolate with her this afternoon and wandered around the marina and admired Upnor castle ... I surreptitiously checked the Internet on my faux crackberry.
1 down lads ... I'll leave the rest unsaid eh!?!

Unconscious Mutterings #315

I say ... and you think ... ?

Cups :: wands, swords and pentacles.
Brilliant :: light
Disobey :: wrong choice
Abstain :: say no
Daily :: bread
You make me :: feel like a natural woman.
Hurl :: throw up
Intensify :: stronger, harder
Fuck! :: it!
Race ::
Do some muttering of your own here.

Friday, February 06, 2009

101 words

Monday, snow ... school open. Journey home tough ~ Gravesend whiteout. Gillingham clearer. Bully Simon into clearing path, he'll be pleased come morning. Tuesday call during commute, school closed to children – site unsafe, staff in. WTF?!? Ice everywhere. Wednesday children in school stuck inside – miserable. S vomits into beads during session. Asleep at 7:30 on the sofa so awake early – need new job. Thursday semblance of normalcy. Friday thank god – lunchtime stopping an escaping child, theme tune to Escape to Victory inside my head. Lock up – know how to turn off alarm if called out … unfortunately! Outside it’s snowing – NOOOOOOOOOO!

101 words

Wednesday, February 04, 2009

Tuesday, February 03, 2009

"Snow and ice and slush, oh my!"

Yesterday was such a crappy day. Ms Mac is absolutely right when she twits "is snorting at the snow chaos in the UK and wondering how they'd cope with Swiss snow! Pahh!"

How would we cope with Swiss snow?

Answer - we wouldn't!
There were 12 members of staff who called in yesterday ...
MOS - "I couldn't posssibly come in, the snow, I can't drive, it wouldn't be safe."
Me - So will you walk?
MOS - "Oh no, it would take me 20 Minutes from here!"
Me - So we'll see you in 20 mins then!
Now you might think me harsh. Nasty. Unkind even BUT by this time/point I had dug my car out and driven the 15 miles to work. I had slipped across the car park, opened and set-up the nursery, slipped into the breakfast club for a crumpet and then manned the phone.
It was an inch and a half of snow for goodness sake. Not 6 inches like the BBC forecast.
And then don't even get me started on the fact that only 40% of the kids turned up ... I'm sure that today will be a joy.

Monday, February 02, 2009

I don't need a bookmark thanks!

Currently re-reading and re-loving Pawn of Prophecy, book 1 of The Belgariad. I might be a while or alternatively, I might just read instead of working ;o)


Sunday, February 01, 2009

Unconscious Mutterings #314

I say ... and you think ... ?

Take :: give
350 :: 351
Stand :: with fists
Raspberry :: blow
Turnstile :: Vetch Field
Infomercial :: Party Political Broadcast
Dejected :: hurt
What’s the word? :: It's on the tip of my tongue!
Awestruck :: Wow
Smashed :: Car crash
Do some muttering of your own here.