Sunday, 29 April 2007

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Saturday, 28 April 2007

Flipping 'eck, I am baking bread

Well here I am again on a sunny Saturday morning.  Oh yeh, I have been baking bread!  Just got it out of the oven and feel very earth motherly here.  Its a bread without yeast and was supposed to be cheese and apple but I didn't have an apple, so its cheese and onion.  Now it looks like a brick with cheese and onion it it!  I will take a picture and let you know what its like.

My tiler was supposed to come today, hmmmm, he has not turned up and I think he will not be coming!  I have left a message on his answerphone but hey, its a sunny day, can't be stressing about it, it will get done (hmmm, it had better we have paid for the blimming tiles up front to him).  He made a lovely job of our floor, so I'll be patient.

I have put a lovely picture up of Rosie when we visited Seaworld a couple of years ago.  Its one of my favourites.  A happy picture for a happy day.

By the way, Matthew had a wonderful time on his trip to Salcombe, Devon.  They stayed on an old ferry and he came back with a real healthy glow about him and said it was his best holiday ever, ahhh!  He is off to a camp with Scouts next weekend for the bank holiday - its a scout's camp not too far away and they will even have a fair there on the Saturday night.  He certainly gets around what with the school trips and scouts.

Well, had to break off as Rosie got up and wanted to try the bread.  I did get a photo before it was cut and am eating some myself.  Hmm, its not bad and quite tasty.  Think I'll do this one again.

This week has been rather fraught at work.  They tried to give me an extra person to work for and I had to be quite firm that I simply could not take on anyone else.  I got quite fed up about it but luckily my other bosses supported me and it was sorted out the same day.  It has left a nasty taste though and I hope I'll be left alone for a while now.  With trying to save money on wages they do not give us cover when we are away on holiday and try to make us work for as many as possible - there are not enough hours in the day as it is at work and I am so pleased I managed to fend this one off.

We have decided to have a memorial evening in honour of Eileen and all the "old" girls of our firm will get together.  Hopefully we'll raise some money at the same time for the hospice she spent her last days in.

Wooopee Whoo, Martin has come back for the weekend.  He arrived at about 11.30 last night after a 5 hour drive.  He has the lovely Julia with him.  I didn't tell the kids and called them down (well, it was a Friday night) and Rosie's face was a picture when she saw her beloved big bro.  I don't know what decision he is going to make about the job but I hope he comes back home as we miss him so.

Well, off to go and eat some more of my bread ... have a great weekend everyone.

Hugs, Terry x

Thursday, 19 April 2007

I hate Aldis

Hmmm, my little shopping expedition a few weeks ago cost me dearly when I parked in Aldis carpark.  I entered at 10.36 and left at 12.08 and because I stayed longer than one and a half hours it has cost me £40 in a parking fine.  It was on bank holiday Friday.  Very nice to get it on my birthday, eh?  2 minutes late .... There is no option of an appeal, only an increase to £70 if not paid by the 30th.  So I have paid and am feeling mad as hell.  Never again will Aldis get my custom.  I am thinking of really bad words to say about them but |I am too much of a lady!!  The worrying thing is that I was in there last Friday too and I am sure I was there longer than 1 hour and a half, so I am now waiting for my next fine to drop through the door. 

Apart from that, my birthday has been lovely.  Rosie made me a lovely breakfast of scrambled eggs and toast and she and Paul got me a lovely radio cassette.  I got some lovely cards and presents from work, including earrings, a bracelet and some beautiful roses.  Christine gave me £50, so generous .... I will have to get something special and no, I am not spending on that parking fine!  Rosie baked me a birthday cake last night and it was absolutely delicious. 

Tomorrow I am going to the funeral of my friend Eileen, who sadly died last Saturday morning.  My sister and I worked with Eileen for many years, so we are both going together to pay our last respects.

My nephew, Martin ,called tonight to wish me happy birthday and we had a good chat.  Leeds doesn't seem to be going that great.  I am not sure whether its the job or the fact that he is missing being here, not only us but also his friends and all the activities he was involved in here.  It could be he is missing Billy but I don't think its that!  Maybe its my new kitchen luring him.  I don't really know but his voice sounded very sad and he told me that the job he had also been offered down here before he went was still open to him if he wanted it.  Obviously, I'd like him back here and didn't want him to go in the first place but I have told him that he needs to think very carefully about what to do next.  I think he is worn out as he has been doing some very late nights and that doesn't help.

Matthew is due back from Salcombe tomorrow night.  He tells us it will be at 11.30pm .... I bet you anything that it will be later than that.  I always seem to wait up for hours before he arrives home from these things.

Anyway, off I go now.


Terry x

Monday, 16 April 2007

I love Basildon

I am back from my adventure to Basildon!

My friend's wedding was on Saturday, so Rosie and I (after an exhausting week of shopping and finding all the necessary accessories) set off nice and early for the Holiday Inn at Festival Park.  I like Holiday Inns and this one is a good place to stay.  Its set on a leisure park and surrounded by a lovely lake.  We had a bright, airy room with a lovely view of the lake.

The drive there was horrendous ... I had to access the M25 by the M11 and it was awful getting onto and competing with the big boys in their 4 wheel drives.  My lip was actually shaking by the time I managed to manoeuvre on there.  Luckily though I calmed down and the rest of the journey was fine.

We found the hotel fine, which is on a big leisure complex with cinema, bowling alley, loads of restaurants, TGI Fridays, Chillis, Nandos, Pizza Hut etc. 

Rosie and I threw our bags in the room and then got a cab into Basildon town centre, where we proceeded to inspect the market and shops.  I have never been there before and when I noticed the bus stands, was almost tempted to get a bus into Southend but thought it may leave us a little tight on time.

Gaz, the Asda there is to die for ... lots of kitchen things etc., and its enormous.  Its also got a big Walmart sign up which I haven't noticed at the Harlow Asda.

We found a nice Wimpy bar and had a good lunch before going back to the hotel and meeting up with friends.  We didn't have to be at the wedding until 7pm, so spent a leisurely hour by the lake, sipping diet cokes and then went up to get ready for the festivities.

My friend looked like an angel and her smile was beautiful.  We had a wonderful time there and it was really nice because we knew so many people there from work.  We got up to a lovely breakfast at the Holiday Inn, I was like a little sheep grazing.  After we checked out we decided to go bowling and ended up leaving the complex at about 1pm to go home.  I felt like I had had a little holiday. 

We came home to a very quiet house as Matthew has gone to Salcombe in Devon for a few days with his school.  It feels very strange without him and I haven't let myself really enjoy the peace and quiet yet.  Paul took him to get the coach early yesterday morning.  He'll be back on Friday by which time I think we'll really be missing him.  I am dreading the washing coming home with him though.

Rosie and I went to the dentist last week and she had her tooth out for the brace work.  She was so brave, ahh.  Mrs Coward here has to have a blimming root canal done on that dodgy tooth.  I can't wait until the 28th, not!

The kitchen is almost done .. we are waiting for the tiler.  I'll put the pictures on then. 

I wish everyone a great week.


Terry x


Monday, 9 April 2007

Lovely days

I have had some lovely lazy days.  In fact I feel so laid back I am almost vertical!

Yesterday Matthew and I went off to the car boot which is held at the end of our village.  Yesterday it was massive.  I was on a short time limit as Chris was coming to visit at 11.30 a.m.   I got some wonderful bargains for Matthew, mainly clothes and we found a Friends Annual for Rosie.  I got myself a lovely teapot, which has lots of teddy bears on and the words "the day the teddy bears had their picnic" around the lid and base.  When I can get photos working I'll post a picture of it.  Its funny, we have an old cd in the car with children's tunes on it and one of them is the Teddy Bear's Picnic.  Rosie and I always sing along to it and its a joke between us that when I don't know the words of a song, I'll always just sing the word "picnic" and make her scream with laughter.  As I don't know the words of most songs, I sing the word "picnic" quite a lot.  Oooh, mad or what.  Anyway, we are thrilled with our teapot.

I also picked up a tiny cd/radio player and have been boogying around in the kitchen to it. 

My sister, Chris, arrived on time and stayed for about an hour and then her daughter, Carolyne and family came.  We had a great afternoon.  All the boys and Rosie and Martin's girlfriend, Julia, went fishing up the river and Carolyne, Emma and I sat and chatted.  Emma is still confused as to who the father of the baby could be.  Quite honestly neither boy can offer her much.  One boy was a very casual affair just before Christmas and the other boy who she started to see in early January has a girlfriend of long standing, and is seeing Emma behind her back .... She is due on 7th October and is about 13 weeks pregnant.  She says she had a period at the beginning of January.  I am not an expert at working this out but think it must be the boy in December who got her pregnant and maybe she had a false period afterwards.  Anyway, she is feeling very sorry for herself but excited about the baby.  She has never worked and the future looks bleak.  I can only hope that this all works out for her and the baby.  I will support her all I can though, she has made a lot of mistakes in her life and I thought she had had 2 other pregnancies.  In fact it has been 3 and this is the fourth.  She had 2 miscarriages and feels she must goahead with this pregnancy.  This is a really tangled web.

Martin left last night with Julia, so they could spend today with her mother.  He was reluctant to go and I know he misses us very much when he is not here.  Julia was again unwell over the weekend, nuff said!  The kids would love to see Martin alone but I don't think it will happen unless we go to visit him.  Hmmm, maybe I will do that if I can work out a couple of days off.

Not a great night's sleep last night!  We didn't go to bed until about 1.30 a.m. and every time I settled down Billy began barking.  I just can't lie there with maybe something happening downstairs or outside, so down I came and at 3 a.m. I was watching telly!  Paul of course just lets me take over guard duties and sleeps on like a babe!  We have had our car stolen twice from outside and also Rosie's bike. Billy really barked when the bike went and I ignored him, so I just have to go and check, just in case.  One night he started barking and I threw open the window and sure enough there was a man near our car.  I shouted out "what are you doing?" and he replied "I'm the milkman! ... oooh the embarrassment.  Paul was shaking with laughter!  Anyway, finally at 4 a.m. I went upstairs and this time my dear little dog finally settled and managed to get a good few hours of kip in!

I am taking Audrey out this afternoon to the local garden centre.  She came over yesterday and asked what time we'd be going.  I told her 2pm as I have some jobs to do here.  She said "ooh, its cheaper there in the morning" .... I think she wanted to go in the morning, don't you?  Poor Audrey is getting more senile and weak.  She has lost so much weight and is telling me the same story over and over as if I hae never heard it before.  She has been up and down to the hospital and as far as I know it is nothing too serious but she is on steroids and it has made the skin on her arms and legs very fragile.  She is lonely and fed up and hangs on her gate waiting for someone to chat to.  Although she is frail, she has been up and down the lane deadheading all the daffodils which are planted in the bank.  She walks up and down to the village every day (which is a good mile in my reckoning).  She visits here about 3 times a day if I am at home.  She always brings something with her for us, brussel sprouts, old china, uneaten cakes with a chunk out, a lot of it is all out of date and then last week she tried to give me her old jacket.  We have also had a pair of her husband's old swimming trunks ... don't laugh!  She has no kids and if anyone would have made a great mother, it is her.  She is now 78 and told me she tried infertility clinics years ago with no luck.  Ahh. 

Anyway, just got to go and do some jobs. 

Hope everyone is having a lovely, restful time.


Terry x

Saturday, 7 April 2007

Busy, busy

Hello everyone,

I have been really busy with this and that over the last week or so.  The kitchen is coming along nicely and I got hot water back last Monday, my work top and my hob!  Its so nice not washing up in the bath any more and we still can't get used to getting water from the kitchen sink and not the outside tap!  We're still trying to find some tiles and think we may have found some today but they are rather expensive and we hope we may be able to get a discount on them.  Now we have the kitchen, I don't think we'll be able to afford any food, ha ha.

Its nice to have a few days off from work and it gives me time to get my stuff back out of the shed.  I have almost found everything and one bonus is that quite a few years ago Martin was working for Sainsburys and brought me home quite a lot of stainless steel kitchen stuff and we rediscovered the box of it all in the shed which I had almost forgotten about.  I have lots of new shiny things, including rather a nice egg slicer and a lovely colander.  I also remembered that I had bought a nice little chicken pelmet curtain and tea towels when I was in Orlando (from my favourite shop, Walmart).  Hmm, I am a bit of a saddo - most people bring something Mickey Mouse back and there is me with my chicken curtain.  I put it up yesterday and it makes the kitchen look very homely.  AOL won't let me put any pictures up but you can guarantee you will be seeing the chicken curtain soon!

Apart from that, the children have now been on holiday for a week and both seem chilled out.  Martin, my nephew, is back for the weekend and tonight he is cooking our favourite, Pad Thai, mmm mouth is watering already.  He took the children out fishing yesterday afternoon and they came back to a nice dinner of gammon (I know, it should have been fish) and jacket skins filled with a cheese and mustard mix with cheese on top.  I make a mean jacket skin, usually I like to put a few more things in but his girlfriend is rather fussy on what she eats.

This afternoon I intend to have a good tidy up, this place is looking a real tip ... I just can't believe where it all comes from.

My niece phoned up earlier and my great niece is pregnant again.  This is her third pregnancy.  She is 19 years old.  She was only 16 on the first pregnancy and decided on an abortion, the second was a miscarriage andthis time she says it could be of two boys who got her pregnant, ooooh .....  I couldn't believe she had the abortion the first time, especially as she had a scan done before but it was her decision.  I don't know what to say about this pregnancy except that perhaps it may make her grow up a bit if the pregnancy goes to term and she has to take responsibility for this child.  Already though my niece thinks she may be the one who will bring the baby up.  We'll see.  Emma has always been difficult and has got herself into a few scrapes over the years.  I really hope this child gets the mother it deserves.  So, I may be a great great Auntie in October which I am actually excited about.  I haven't spoken to my sister yet, the great grandmother to be, I think she will have some choice words about it.

I am off to my friend's wedding next Saturday and staying at the Holiday Inn in Basildon (I think!!) for the night.  She is a lovely girl and looks just like Honey from Eastenders.  She is one of the nicest people I know and I hope the sun shines for her on her special day.

It will make a nice weekend as its on a leisure complex, so we may go bowling before we come home.  Matthew is off on his school sailing trip to Salcombe in Devon and Paul has to take him up his school on Sunday morning to get the coach by about 10 a.m.  I will have to say my goodbyes on Saturday before I leave for the wedding.  He is so looking forward to it and keeps wanting to pack his bag now.  Unlike Rosie, he loves going away and doing things although he is always glad to get home and normally arrives back exhausted!  He is put out because he can't take his PS thingy with him, so I have told him to take a few good books instead.  Its good that he has started to read now and really enjoys a read before he settles down to sleep at night.

Dare I say that I am back to the tooth fairy on Tuesday.  Its tooth out day for Rosie for her brace preparation and teeth cleaning for me, although she may start my root canal treatment .... eek!  Thinking of taking my bed up the dental surgery although touch wood at the moment all is quiet on the zingy zangy front.

I had a very sad moment this week when I opened an email from a friend's sister.  She was diagnosed with brain cancer late last year which was secondary from lung cancer.  It was already to the brain when theydiscovered she was ill.  They decided to give her a course of chemotherapy but she has become very ill and is now in the hospice being very sleepy.  I do not think she will be here for much longer.  Say a little prayer for cheeky Eileen with the twinkly eyes and raucous giggle. 

Its just a reminder really that life is for living and to enjoy every day whatever it brings.

I hope everyone has a lovely, restful Easter.


Terry x