Wednesday, 21 December 2016

Goals For The New Year

New Years Resolutions don't seem to be very popular anymore, but I love setting myself goals for the coming year. It gives me something to focus on and work towards. I will do a round up of the last year and celebrate the last year as this one comes to a close as well as make plans for the next one. I don't always complete my goals but I like to feel like I'm moving forward and I like a challenge!

Has anyone else completed any challenges this year or making any goals or plans  for 2017? I'd love to hear if you are :) I'll share mine soon. Right must get going, today I am working til 2pm, then walking my Cinnamon Trust dogs then on to medicate my friends cat then home to have a tidy up etc then driving to town to pick up dh from the bus station as he's been away for a couple of days.

Have a good day :)

Sunday, 18 December 2016

Work Work Work!

I am exhausted! It's been a really busy week. People at work are on holiday or off  sick so I have worked 58 hours this week. I work with the public and am very busy all day so I do feel very tired when I do lots of extra hours. It's very draining. After work every day I have then been going over to an elderly friends to medicate her cat for her as he is unwell and she cannot do it herself. She is lovely and always asks me to stay for a chat and a cup of tea which is lovely, but sometimes means I do not get in til 8-9pm at night. I have to leave for work at 7-30am so there's not much time to do anything when I get in before I fall into bed! I also pulled a muscle in my back friday doing heavy lifting.
Yesterday I was working the morning, followed by clearing at the allotment followed by cat duty followed by going to the cinema with DH to see the new Star Wars film. I've never seen any of them but DH loves it.
This morning i got up late (7.30am) and have done very little except sit and do loads of reading in the quiet. Bliss! Dh even made me breakfast! In about half an hour we are going for a walk even thought it's very foggy. This afternoon will be visiting friends about an hour away followed by cat duty.
Another busy week this week but hopefully less work so will be a bit better.

Sunday, 11 December 2016

Stew and Muesli

Winter is a time of stew and Muesli, which are definately forming at least 80% of our diet at the moment (at least it feels like it!), sometimes I have porridge, but at the moment usually muesli. We dont buy it pre-made with added sugar etc, we make it ourselves from scratch and I change it each time depending on what I feel like. My last cup (I always make it in a cup, I don't know why) contained:
Oats (jumbo not porridge)
Frozen blackcurrants  (from our allotment- hopefully they keep away the colds!)
Raw almond butter (I don't add sugar so a bit of nut butter adds a bit of yum!)
Sunflower seeds
Pumpkin Seeds
Plain Yoghurt
The nuts make it satiating and the blackcurrants add a zing of vitamins. At the moment I will happily have some for lunch whilst at work too :)
Stews on the slow cooker are also a must. Dh had crowned himself stew king and they are really really good. Lots of swede, carrot and comfort food. I don't like them too starchy so we usually avoid potatoes as well as other root veg but I love cabbage or any greens in them too. As well as stews we are eating a lot of stir fries. Today for lunch we had stir fried carrot, cabbage, our own leeks and broccoli which we had with scrambled egg. We did a triple batch of grated veg which i will keep in the fridge ready to use for our next couple of meals.
It's 4:30pm and already quite dark. The mist is rolling in and it looks like it's going to be a cold one. Today we have also taken recycling to the dump, bit of Christmas shopping incorporated into a 5 mile walk and helped a friend medicate her poorly cat.
This evening I am going to have a shower, relax followed by watching the old rerun of Gladiators on Challenge TV. They are rerunning the series from the start from the early 90's on Sundays nights. Takes me back to my childhood. We pretend to wear the big foam hands and everything! ...... well we enjoy it anyway! ;)

The view from our kitchen window a short time ago. You can just see the mist starting to roll in.  

Monday, 5 December 2016

Flea Market

Hello! Its so wet and cold this way. We had a few lovely frosty mornings but now it's back to gray and  dreary which is a bit depressing to be honest!

This weekend we went to a local flea market and it was FREEZING! Really cold wind. We were there for about 3 hours and the main things we got was a ww2 officers canvas fold up bed in very good condition for £12 and dh also found me a Ww2 Domestic Poultry Keepers Ration Book. I Haven't seen one before. I know that if you kept chickens you would forego your egg ration for a chicken feed ration but I never knew feed haf it's own ration book. Does anyone know anything about this or know anyone that had one? I only paid £5 for it and I think it's a gem!

I'm feeling a bit washed out this evening so I'm having a cup of tea and an early night.

Thursday, 17 November 2016

Selling Poppies And A Nice Sunday

We went poppy selling on both Monday and Wednesday last week in local supermarkets. We had never done it before. I put our names down on a form online expecting to get called for next year, but to my surprise, we got a call the next day from a local organiser who said he was very short of help and could we do this year as well. He was pleased when i asked if we could wear our re-enacting clothes as most our re-enacting group do when poppy selling.
We were a bit apprehensive to start with. It was Morrisons on the Monday which was very quiet but we still got some donations and made about  £65 over 2 hours. Tescos on Wednesday was much more busy. I had a very sweet elderly man come over and tell me about his father in the war. A lady asked to give a donation in return for a photo of her son with us as he was doing a WW2 project for school. We haven't had a receipt for the donations yet but I reckon we got about £150 in 3 hours. Next year we hope to do more volunteering for the British Legion. If anyone is thinking of doing the same there is a very easy form to fill out online. Just go to the volunteering for poppy appeal page of the Legions website.
On Sunday we got up early, had a tidy up then went to the allotment and did some site clearing for winter. I'm still waiting for the last of the butternut squashes to ripen up before we can completely clear the plot. At 10:45 we went down to the war memorial for the remembrance service. Then we went off for a cycle, a muddy, hilly cycle! But we managed 9 miles with a stop off for a cup of tea and a flapjack half way ;)
On Friday night we were invited to dinner with friends, and on Saturday we spent the day visiting more friends in Paignton (about 1 1/2 hrs drive). Yesterday was my half day and I finished work at 2pm so I went straight to walk my Cinnamon Trust  dogs before it rained then helped Mrs S give one of the dogs a back end hair trim as he'd had an upset tummy overnight.  Then I went on to visit another elderly lady I see and had a cup of tea and cuddles with her lovely cats, then I picked up some food shopping then finally home about 7pm!
This morning I am catching up on some cleaning before work. Have a good day everyone:) 

Sunday, 6 November 2016

Enjoying Life The Simple Way

Hello. I'm still here. Life has been busy and is busier again this week but we are still striving to live a more simple way.

This week DH and I are selling Poppies in WW2 uniform. This is the first time we've done this and I'm excited. I'd rather be out on the streets but we're in the supermarket which is ok. I hope we raise a lot of money.

It's getting cold now and I'm starting to close down the allotment, clearing the plots, digging them over and removing the squash vines.

Work has been really busy, too much really, a lot of hours and a lot of pressure. This is something I plan to address. This weekend I have noticed my mind wondering towards work and trying to get ahead in my mind. I don't want this to happen and I am going to sort this out. I don't want work, although I do enjoy it to a degree, to take over my free time.

I am still dog walking for the Cinnamon  Trust. My elderly lady is very sweet and every few weeks DH and I take her out for a cream tea :)

The crafting side is on a go-slow at the moment as I am planning my WW2 display for next year for ARP (Air Raid Precaustions) and NARPAC,(National ARP Animals Committee) doing lots of historical reading and planning our Oz trip for next year.

I also have a home jobs list as long as my arm, but I find writing it down helps and I just work my way through it one job at a time.

I have made time for lots of reading, cycling and walking too to reach my 1000 mile challenge for the end of this year, I'm on target! I walked and cycled a total of 15 miles yesterday :) I made squash soup yesterday which I had with rye toast. I will let you know how we get on selling Poppies.

This is one of the books I got at Bookbarn for £1!
It has some fascinating photos
Found these in an antiques centre. They will be great for re-enacting.
I found this little gem at a market. £4.
I love the personal end of service statement given to this lady. I wonder what happened to her.
Squash and own carrots ready for baking :)

Saturday, 13 August 2016

Post I wrote 10 Days Ago!

But I couldn't publish is as phone died and I lost all my photos and everything :( I have salvaged it and still want to publish it but without the photos I was hoping for.....

Dh is away today with friends so I have the day to myself as he wont be back until about 11pm. I woke up early and put the washing out, then had a bit of a tidy up.
As we spent all of last weekend decorating I wanted to treat myself to something nice so I went out to our favourite cafe (it opens at 7:45am!) and had a delicious coffee with doorstop toast and marmalade. The bread is locally using organic flour from our local watermill. It's so nice and really fills me up. I didn't need to eat again til i had an apple at about half past two. To get in some miles for my 1000 mile challenge I went on a 3 mile walk and dropped in a couple of beetroot from my allotment to a colleague who was working.

When i got back from the  cafe i had a good clean of the kitchen whilst bopping around to swing music. The weather that earlier was damp and drizzly suddenly cleared so I went out for a cycle and managed to rack up 8.5 miles. It was hard work though as so windy!! I've started cycling home from work on Tuesdays also which is about 9 miles too, plus it's  a really nice way to unwind as I go the back way through the country, although it can be tiring after a 10 hour day.

I really wanted to stay productive so I then did some Welsh study and some WW2 study in preparation for our next show. I recently brought a WW2 Animal Guard badge and in addition to the Womens Home Front I want to research and be able to tell people about the animals on the home front both working and domestic. I have brought  a book and am going to start reading it this weekend. I know it will be heart wrenching but I think it will be interesting as well, and it is important to remember their story too.
Hope everyone is well :)

One of NARPACs aims was that every pet would
Have a collar tag with their own unique number
On registered on a National Database. This really was
Microchipping except with tags and looking back seems
Really ahead of its time. The NARAPC collar tag on the
Left was VERY hard to find. It's original and i am so excited to have it. 

Tuesday, 26 July 2016

A Day On Flatholm Island

At the weekend  we had a special day out to Flat Holm Island.
I did some holiday cover for someone recently and worked about 55-60 hours two weeks in a row so I decided to treat us with some of my overtime money.
Flat Holm Island is in the Bristol Channel and we got to it by ferry. It is uninhabited except for wardens or campers and has a very interesting history and is a haven for wildlife. It is not very big but we had a lovely day.
On arrival we went to the meeting house and had a short talk about the island. We were then free to explore the island and have a guided tour if we wished. Unfortunately we lost track of the time and missed the talk but we did buy a very interesting detailed island pack which had stacks of info in particularly about the history of the island.
We walked around the island several times, there were lots of seagulls and rabbits as well. There were supposed to be sheep too but they must have been hiding from us tourists!!
The island was heavily fortified during WW2 and there is a lot of evidence of that still on the island today.
There is a mini pub also! We had a tea and coffee and bought our own packed lunch. We went for a sit on the beach and just sat, read and enjoyed the views and peacefulness. I am reading an Age Exchange book on memories of hop picking in the 30's, it is fascinating.

 I fell over on the ferry on the way back, went all my length too- how embarrassing!  We got home late evening, it was a great day, very interesting and relaxing.

Once back on the ferry we had to wait about 45 mind
For the tide to come in before we could leave. Standing at the back of the boat and watching the tide come in was incredibly relaxing :)

This was a hide with slow worm houses either side.

Warden accommodation 

Entrance to WW2 gun fort


Monday, 18 July 2016

A Welsh Holiday And Homemade Ice Cream

I had a lovely time off work- 10 days! We had a couple of days in Powys, Wales. I LOVE Wales! Any Welsh readers out there? I'm still learning Welsh although I dont know if I'll have the confidence to speak it in Wales, I'm too shy!

We stayed in a 1950's showmans Wagon. Inside was completely decked out a la 1950s with proper furniture, a cream tea with proper china all set up on our arrival and the comfyest bed. Ours was the only cabin around set in a 200 acre organic farm and we were free to walk around the woods, farmland as well as explore the river, hides and tree top hides. It was beautiful. The cabin had no tv, no phone signal, no wifi- perfect! We read a lot, I read my books on the 30's and 40's, and walked in the Elan Valley, played cards and slept and nothing else. We loved the solitude and will definately go back. The hosts were so friendly.

I have also been harvesting pounds and pounds of blackcurrants from my allotment and freezing them. My favourite thing at the moment is blackcurrant ice cream. All this is is frozen blsckcurrants blended with a small amount of frozen banana. I like mine very sharp so I only use a little banana for sweetness.

We have a very special trip coming up I am really excited about. Will take lots of photos. Stay tuned :) x

Our beautiful wagon in Powys
The view from our Wagon
Blackcurrant ice cream

Thursday, 30 June 2016

Hello :) An Update

Hello :) I've been wanting to check in for a while. It's been really busy this end. Here's whats been happening....

We've finally had the outside of our house done after a Lot of negotiating with our neighbour, new roof, beams etc, replacement fascias, guttering, repairs to outside and repainted, new gate plus s few other outside jobs. It so desperately needed to be repaired, I'm so pleased it's been done, it looks like a new house! It cost thousands and we had to hold our mortgage payments to pay for our half. But it was absolutely worth it. I'm so relieved it's done, scaffolding came down Friday.

We have joined a WW2 re-enactment group and have done our first shows this year. I represent the womens home front and dh is a soldier. We're really enjoying it and have made some good friends. Dh even got me a crash course beginners swing dance weekend lesson over 2 days. We did it together and it was brilliant.

I bought  a 1980 folding Raleigh bicycle. I call her Betsy and we have been all over the county!

At the same time as our roof was being done our car died. We had ploughed so much money into it we felt like we were throwing good money after bad so called it a day. A friend sold is an old run - around so tide us over until we get ourselves sorted.
I am pretty exhausted at the moment. I've been covering for people on holiday at work. I did 57 hours last week and am doing 52 this week :/

Dh may have a partially ruptured disc in his back and is waiting to see a specialist :/

I have next week off and Dh and I are spending a couple of nights in a vintage wagon as a short holiday. We're looking forward to it. I am feeling very run down so am taking some good books with me to do not a lot except relax and do some good walks. No phone, no wifi and no electric I don't think. I'm pretty sure it's off grid!
Right,  I'm off to bed. Will post soon. Xx

A Purse I made from a bag for life, a zip from dh's
Old jeans and some wool
Betsy :)

Sunday, 14 February 2016

A Vintage House Day (Meant To Post Yesterday)

Dh has been out for the day today and had taken the car. I thought I would be able to get out and do some walking but, on waking up to wind and rain and knew the chances would be slim. I don't enjoy walking in really bad weather as it is so hard for me to dry wet weather gear.

Dh left at 7:15am so after making him coffee and toast I decided to have a practical day with lots of sorting out, reading and food preparation and I wanted to feel lovely whilst having  a house day so I put my hair up in Victory Rolls, put a smart dress on along with thermal tights and set about making the most of a wet Saturday indoors.

I started by putting a load of washing in to soak. The washing machine is still decommissioned. I was really pleased with the way dh's white shirt came up with a hand wash, especially cuffs and collars :)
Next it was Burts litter tray that  needed attention and I combined that with a bathroom clean.

After that it was  a stop for a cup of tea and I read some of my new magazine! Although one of the problems of buying old magazines is that if there are three part stories, I only get to read the first or mid part and never find out what happens! The one in my Red Letter magazine was really good and I can't find the next issue!!

Burt was then sick in the lounge so I took the opportunity to shampoo half the carpet after hoovering.

I sorted the food we have in. We have a load of plums I was going to freeze but after trying one, they were so delicious I know dh and I will get through them before they go off so I left them. I put  a veggie soup on in thr slow cooker which will be portioned and frozen for work lunches. I also had 3 bags of parsnips that needed something doing to them. I used one bag in the soup, then peeled and chopped the rest into chips and popped them in the freezer.

Lunch was scrambled egg on toast with a side salad and was lovely. I also cracked myself a few Brazil nuts.

There was a break in the weather in the afternoon so I whizzed up the lane and back which was 2 miles. The rest of the afternoon was much more leisurely and when dh came back we had a game of rummy (I won!).

For dinner we had sausage and noodles with veggies. It was a really nice day, despite the weather and I am itching to get up the allotment!

The dress I wore, modern, but the fit is flattering

Thursday, 11 February 2016

A Calm Start To The Day

Dh and I both work full time. Most mornings I need to leave the house at 7:30am, sometimes a bit later. We usually try and get up nice and early so we don't have to rush. 

When the alarm goes off in the morning. Dh turns it off and I turn on the lamp in the bedroom. We then get up, dh gets himself sorted, makes the bed then usually goes straight to his office to work.

I like to try and be calm and quiet in the morning. For me, it starts the day off right and lets me collect my thoughts. I have a busy and sometimes stressful job so I enjoy a quiet time before the day starts in earnest. During the winter months i only have lamps on in the mornings to provide  a gentler light that is easier on the eyes. Sometimes, if I don't have the lamps on I will put the hall light on and let the residual light lights every room a little. I don't have the tv or the radio on in the mornings. At the weekend or if I'm working late occasionally Il put it on radio 4 late morning but never first thing.

I make breakfast and sort lunches for us both and make us both a proper coffee, our treat to start the day:) Dh had breakfast in his office so I go somewhere quiet to eat, usually with a book or 1940s magazine if there's time. In the summer if I'm not in a rush I'll eat on the decking outside.

I always try and leave a tidy house. I'm more of a morning person so it's easier for me to get jobs done early so if I don't feel like much after work I don't have to force myself and can just relax.

Today I have woken up to a misty frozen fog! My washing outside is frozen solid. Dh and I have just had honey toast and a coffee and I'm about to start the ironing. I work late today so I'll get everywhere spick and span this morning, go for a walk up the lane (2 miles) then come back before getting ready for work.

I'd love to hear how anyone else starts their day?
It's Freezing Today. Looks beautiful 


Tuesday, 9 February 2016

Trying To Lead A Simple Life . . .

I was thinking this evening about doing blog post about what I've been doing this evening. I've been busy. I feel like I'm always saying I'm busy! Dh had a really bad headache and was laying down in the lounge with a duvet and hot water bottle. I decided to get a lot of jobs done as I  not too tired after work (10 hours today). As I was working, cooked dinner, rice noodles, fish and spring greens with a white sauce. While i was making this I stripped the bedding and got it soaking in the bath as the washing machine is still out of commission. I then got a parcel ready to post, replied to a couple of emails, medicated Burt (he has a toothache and is in for dental work next week). I started thinking about the difference between our life and that of people we know.

I find my life very fulfilling. It's not perfect, is anyone's? But I love it and I like that I try to be a little bit different and do things the way we like even though it may not be conventional or always easy. It's taken a while to get here. I was a bit wild in my late teens/early twenties.

At the moment we are urgently saving  £5k to have work done on the outside of our home. Living on yellow tickets for groceries goes a small way to helping us do that. It's not always easy, and meals sometimes have to be creative ( thank goodness my husband is happy to eat anything he does not have to cook himself!) but we save a large amount of money doing this. Also, our washing machine is on strike so I am making do with a bucket and plunger or the bath for larger items. I quite like doing this, it's only my work uniforms that can sometimes be tricky to get to washing machine standard but at the moment I'm fine to make do. Although drying things is hard at this time of year anyway, let along with hand wrung items! I shampoo'd the carpet at the weekend and (while I don't like to gloat) it's come up really well and cost about  10p in carpet cleaner and the elbow grease was free! compared to ££ to hire carpet cleaner. I plan to make my way around the house as the weather gets better.

It's been hard to get up the allotment recently. For anyone reading this outside the UK, we have had rain and wind and generally horrible weather for weeks now. As soon as it gets better I will need to get down there and crack on.

I feel like I've rambled a bit. I guess what I wanted to say is that a traditional or simple life is not always an easy or quiet life. Our life is busy, we do relax and have time out but the easier thing to do would be to fix the washing machine on credit and take out a loan for the roof. It would be easier to buy veggies and fruit all year round rather than have an allotment. But for us that isn't satisfying and I think a happy life is one that is fulfilling. For everyone that means something different and I think that changes as life goes on. In ten years time things may be different, who knows?

I hope this reads ok. I've ummed and ahhd about posting it as i don't want to come across as a bit.  . . .I'm not sure of the word! I wanted to post a few more thoughts but it's late now and I want to read so I'll say goodnight. The wind is howling here so I've put the washing out. Who knows if it will be there in the morning? !

Nighty night x

Saturday, 6 February 2016

Making The Best Of The Weekend

Sometimes, when the weather is especially poor, I think it's easy to waste the weekend as I can feel  limited in what I can do and go.

Today, the weather has been horrendous. Howling wind and rain, and it's set to last all weekend. It's cold and damp and miserable! I was working this morning and it was very busy. Dh picked me up and treated me to beans on toast and a coffee out for lunch! It was lovely to sit and watch the world go by in the warmth of the cafe with the rain driving down outside. On the way home we stopped to get some carpet shampoo. When we got in dh helped me blitz the house. I got a load of handwashing done, dh dusted and hoovered. I did the kitchen and bathroom floors then once everything was done I shampoo'd the hall carpet as it's been annoying me for ages! The dehumidifier (which we use in winter to prevent damp in our old home) is on to dry it. It's not really ideal carpet cleaning weather but better now while I've got the time than not at all!!

I then sat down to do some language study. I've always wanted to learn another language but dh and I don't go abroad very often so I decided to learn Welsh, it's it's my nearest country that speaks another language and I'm really enjoying it! Unfortunately, I don't know anyone that speaks welsh. It's my own project. It's  a speaking, not a writing course. I'm doing the Say Something In Welsh course and I love it. I've been doing it for about 6 months now. Slow and steady progress to reach a lifelong ambition :) I try and practice 3-4 times a week even if it's only for 15 minutes or so.

I then sat down with a cup of tea and read some of my Land Girls book.

We were going to go for  a drive this evening to look at the flooding but the strong winds have kept us safely inside.

Wishing I could get up the allotment but I can't see any point in going up and getting soaking wet and trying to lug heavy soil around and probably putting my back out in the process!

Off to bed now. Nighty night.

Thursday, 4 February 2016

Doing Lots Of Reading

I've been doing lots of reading recently to try and destress from all the house drama that is still going on *sigh*. Below are two new books I've got.

I went to  the opening of a friends vintage shop recently. Beautiful shop with some lovely original pieces.

I've been doing lots of walking as I'm trying to walk 1000 miles this year as a personal challenge. It's not easy getting out every day with the weather as it is but I'm past the 90 mile mark now since  1st Jan so that's pretty good I think.

The washing machine is still broken. Dh thought he'd fixed it but alas not so I'm handwashing, which I'd be happy to do long term except my work uniforms really need a machine wash but it's ok at the moment. We're looking forward to a nice weekend. Going to try and get up the allotment too. I've seen some blackcurrant seedlings cheap I'm going to pick up.

Looking forward to starting WW2 re - enactment this year too!

Wednesday, 27 January 2016

A Day Of Socialising

I'm not a big socialiser. I dont have  a massive circle of friends and I'm certainly not out all the time, and that's the way I like it. I'm happy in my own company. But today I met up with two lovely friends after work.

 Firstly, a friend from my old job who was incredibly supportive during my difficult time there. Followed by a friend I met through my old job, an elderly lady I visit for a cup of tea and a biscuit quite often. She is very interesting to talk to and has had a fascinating life.

When I got in I made tea for dh and was excited to see a magazine I bought had arrived. It's a women's magazine from 1935. I'm looking forward to reading it. Then it was evening walk and now I'm in bed as we're both really tired. Up at 6am tomorrow as even though I don't start work til lunch time I have soup to make, washing to do, a walk to fit in and maybe some time at the allotment, weather permitting.

Monday, 25 January 2016

Using Up What's Left

I stayed up far too late last night reading. I struggled to get up this morning! Dh was up at 6am this morning to go to work. 

Whenever he is up before me (which isn't that often) I tell him to put the kettle on. We have a whistling kettle so I know when the kettle starts to whistle I HAVE to get out of bed to stop it whistling! Then I'm up, and once I'm up, I'm fine :)

Finished work at 2pm then came home and had some lunch. I really wanted to finish the book I'm reading so sat down and read for a good hour. I sat at the table to read, I've started doing that recently when I read in the day. I find it easier to concentrate and less distracting.

I had some carrots I really wanted to use up, so I grated them and stir fried them with shallots and fresh basil. I cooked some rice and stirred it in. Dh had a salmon tart with his and i had mine on its own with  a sprinkling of cheese. I had some  apples on the turn so I stewed them with the last of the blackberries  (frozen).

Dh thinks he has fixed the washing machine so I will do a trial wash in the next day or so :)
This evening it will be a walk and shopping followed by an early night. Dh and I did play cards last night and after my terrible defeat last time I am pleased to say I won by a whisker!

Sunday, 24 January 2016

A More Relaxing Day

As hoped, we have had a more relaxing day today. Starting with porridge with some oats I found at the back of the cupboard that caused dh much excitement as he loves porridge and I thought we'd be run out of oats :)
It's pretty damp here today. Not raining just wet and pretty miserable so we walked to the allotment and back to have  a look at it. We couldn't do any digging as the ground is saturated but we made plans and walked a good 3 miles which was nice.
Dh is continuing sorting out his office. He's spent this afternoon selling bits on Ebay and after tidying up I kept him company reading Golden Pavements and started my new Evacuation book also.
We then went for another walk as I had to post a couple of bits. We're now in for the evening. I'm looking forward to challenging dh to another game of cards. He beat me last time!
All in all it's been a pretty relaxing day and I'm off now to make a cup of tea :)

Saturday, 23 January 2016

Looking Forward To Our Day Of Rest

At the weekend Dh and I usually have one day where we get all our chores done and one day where we do something fun or just relax. Today is definately the busy day. We got up  early and went for our weekly treat/date of breakfast out. We do this every week. I had  scrambled eggs on toast with a cappuccino and dh had croque madame and a cappuccino. Then I needed to get some more allotment trousers. I quick trawl round the charity shops got me 2 pairs for £1.24 each special offer! Dh got a jumper and I picked up some  books.

Then I dropped dh off at home and I went back into town. I had already to drop some charity stuff off so I parked in a residential area and turned it into a 4 mile walk to contribute to the 1000 miles I am trying to walk this year.

Once home it was sit down and a cup of tea! I prepped late lunch/dinner of veggie stew with Organic Bacon topped with a little Mozerella and left it to cook slowly. Our washing machine appears to have  packed up. As we're still waiting for roof quotes I told Dh I am happy to wash by hand until we know where we are financially so I got a load washed that I had soaked overnight and put out to drip dry.

After lunch we relaxed a bit by playing a game of cards then I helped (a bit) dh sort out his office.

I made a new curtain tie as the lace had ripped on the old one. It is made with leftover lace from my wedding dress. It is secured with poppers.

We're relaxing now but it has been a productive day. Early night I think. Lots of reading planned for tomorrow.

Tuesday, 19 January 2016

Just A Quick One

Dh and I are having an early night tonight. We've both had busy days today, even so we went for a half hour walk this evening and got some food shopping on the way back. We've just got in, I've boiled the kettle for a hot water bottle, made us both a cup of tea and now we're both reading in bed (except I've stopped to quickly post this!) Just wanted to say thanks for everyone's continued support of my blog. It's freezing again tonight. Wrap up warm everyone!

Saturday, 16 January 2016

Reading, Allotmenting And Watching Old Programmes

I've had a lovely day today. Dh has been out with friends with the car so I walked to the allotment this morning and did some digging. It was pretty hard work but I really wanted to get some of the beds turned before it starts raining again next week.

I walked back and had some lunch and a coffee, had a bit more of a clean and tidy up. I then did some reading. I'm enjoying Voices From The Home Front by Felicity Goodall. After getting hot with all the digging at the allotment, once i sat down I felt quite cold so I got some logs in and I've got the woodburner on. I then found  a programme on BBC I-PLayer broadcast in 1956 about young women moving to London in search of a better life and what their options are and what happens to some of them. They interviewed  a lot of young women, landladies of hostels, employers etc. It seems to be an informative documentary for worried parents and I found it very interesting.

For tea I had poached eggs on toast and an Orange. Tomorrow I'm back to the allotment for more digging as well as a walk, I'm sorting charity bits for Dh to drop off and dh and I will hopefully get some walking in. The drain-man bill came today, £82 so I've sent a cheque off for that too.

In bed tonight I'll carry on reading  a fictional book I bought written in 1947 called Golden Pavements. It's about  a group of young adults going off to drama school and what happens to them. I think it may have been written for children but never mind, I'm enjoying it very much, it has a lovely gentle story and is perfect for bedtime :)

I dug ovrr three beds. Same again tomorrow!

We Needed A Cold Spell- And We've Got It!

Being British I LOVE talking about the weather- I think it's genetic ;) and for weeks now everyone has been saying we need a cold snap after all this wet weather we've been having, to kill off the bugs and make it feel like a proper winter and get everything drying out. Well today it has arrived here in the South with Dh reporting it's -4 outside (that's cold for us - please don't laugh anyone living anywhere that is 'really' cold! ). I've gone rogue and put the radiator on, something I rarely do in the mornings. It is usual for me to wear coats, gloves and a hat inside in winter.

Burt has eaten his breakfast and gone back to bed. As it's supposed to be wet again within the week I will go to the allotment today. Although I won't be able to do digging, I can weed and get some exercise. I was reading about the Land Girls working their socks off harvesting beets in ground that was frozen solid. If they can do that I'm sure I can manage  a bit of weeding! I'm going to make  a big soup at lunch time to have over the weekend. Dh has taken on extra work as we're saving whilst waiting for work to begin on the roof, and I am bringing household expenses down as much as I can.

In addition to the allotment, today I will be cleaning and tidying the house, going on  a walk  and later on, getting the fire on and doing some reading. Plenty of hot drinks and maybe warm scone with butter and a cup of tea :)

Have a lovely weekend, stay warm!

Sunday, 10 January 2016

A Very Long Walk!

Firstly, I'd just like to thank everyone for all their lovely comments and support yesterday. I did get the fire on in the evening and Dh and I played cards. I then had an early night reading one of my new novels written in 1947.

Today, it's been raining on and off but I really wanted to 'do' something. As we've gotten a bit behind with our walking (we're doing Ilonas 1000 mile challenge at Life After Money blog) I suggested we did a ten mile walk. Dh and i love walking but we've never done 10 miles in one go before. We decided as it's so wet and muddy to stick to mostly country roads and pavements. The first 5 were pretty easy, then it started raining which wasn't as much fun, luckily it stopped for the last 2 so we dried out  a bit. We did it!

It feels like a great achievement. This evening I have some planning to do for some games and a treasure hunt I am planning for when my nieces visit so I better get cracking!

Saturday, 9 January 2016

I Need Some Spirit Of The Blitz! :/

Ok. . . . Recently things have gotten a bit *blows raspberry* and I'm feeling a bit fed up. I want my blog to be real and not just a reflection on the good times, so I'm sitting here in a thick cardy with a scarf and hat on armed with a big coffee and am going to have  a massive rant to get it all off my chest (so sorry).

We live in a maisonette, and the owner of the other half always rented it out until recently and it was a nightmare getting him to agree to any external maintenance  so the outside is very rundown. Recently with all the rain (will it ever stop?) we realised the roof beams have slipped and our roof is leaking. The new owner wants to sort it out too ( thank goodness) as well as repair external walls and repaint and new gutters and fascias which should help with the smallish damp problem we're currently managing in the bedroom, but this is going to cost serious money, thousands, and we don't have it. We're going through our options now of how to get the money together. It will be amazing once it's done, but i have no idea how long we have to wait for the work to start, and how we are going to fund it. We might have to cancel our 2017 trip to visit my sister in Australia we've been saving for, and even then it won't be enough :(

Our car has also cost us  a small fortune recently, more than its worth really, reaching a new record of going to the garage for three separate problems within a week. It may have to be retired soon, but that's  a problem for  another day as we're not currently in a position to get a new one.
I'm going to be totally British now and say I'm sick of this weather! Round here it's rain, rain, rain, rain. It's cold and damp, our house is freezing and I can't dry any washing unless the dehumidifier is on, which is not cheap to run. Everywhere feels messy and unclean, which is not true but just reflects my mood. We have no central heating and there's no denying it- it's cold, not freezing but so damp it just feels miserable.

My work is ok but dh is struggling a bit with his and is feeling pretty frustrated at the moment too. Plus he's trying to sort out the roof problem and earn extra to help with everything.

We have plumbers bill expected at the end of the month for just over £100 for the emergency work to the kitchen sink which meant i couldn't use the washing machine or kitchen sink for a week over Christmas.
Burt was  sick all over the lounge tablecloth yesterday. I've washed it but it's pretty thick, so today I have to try and get it dry. Not  a massive problem but it gets to a point where everything feels like a big problem.
We wanted to go walking this weekend but it's so wet i can't bear to have any more wet coats and muddy wellies in the house.

I've been reading a Land Girls book recently and it's brilliant. So, right now I'm going to get up, get the house spick and span, do the ironing, get dh and go somewhere, anywhere to get out the house. Then tonight we're going to light the fire, get all our WW2 stuff out and try and forget our troubles!

Tomorrow is a new day!
Wish me luck.

These are the books i bought at  a second hand bookshop last weekend :)

Friday, 1 January 2016

A Productive Start To A New Year

Last night we had an early one and were asleep just after ten. I'm more of a fan of getting a good night's sleep and starting the day bright and early than staying up til midnight then beginning the day waking up at lunch time then spending the afternoon wrapped in  a duvet nursing a hangover!
We did have  a bit of a lie in though and got up at 8am. I made us coffee  and toast for breakfast. We got lots of stocking fillers for Christmas of things like jam, chutney and honey so we've been making the most of those :)
As I've taken on the 1000 miles in 2016 challenge from  Ilona at Life After Money blog, we thought we'd start the day with a brisk walk. We did 3 miles off - road which was muuuuddddyyyy and windy but we came home feeling refreshed and ready for lunch which was left over veg reheated with noodles, sprinkling of cheese and dh had a slice of toast.
We went for another walk in the evening, round town this time and did another couple of miles. This evening we're watching Sherlock and treating ourselves to a bit of choco from our stocking :)