Les Mis Trailer

Wednesday, 30 June 2010

receiving his diploma

Here he is then, posing with his mentor Tamar, diploma in hand........well done sweetheart!! We are SO proud of you!!!


looking happy outside school before heading in for his ceremony this evening.

TIm's Diploma Evening

So I was alone at school this evening watching our son receive his school diploma, which I found very sad but at the same time I suppose it was only right that we did it together to the very end. I have supported Tim through the toughest of times since he started school way back in England, and it meant more than I can put into words to be there this evening and see him get this important certificate. We did it together Tim!! Here are the school photos they put up behind him as his name was called out: of course out of all the classes Tim was the second to last child to be called up!!! These are the first and fourth year school photos! It was a very long evening with four classes being represented and every child had something said about them by their teachers. Fortunately Tamar had decided to give a short speech followed by a small gift for her class so it was more enjoyable! We got home around 9.40pm so it was quite a lengthy session in a very warm hall with no airco or refreshments!!! Anyway Tim and I enjoyed a cold beer together before heading upstairs. Now it is a question of looking forward to the start of his career choice in September and adulthood.................

Tuesday, 29 June 2010

Some good news at last!

So it has finally happened and Tim and I have got our new house!! Well, we know where we are heading and that is something positive, right?! We hope to move in about a month from now, or thereabouts, so at the beginning of August we ought to be packing our bags and heading out of Westwoud. Luckily we don't have to move far, and it is a good house where we will be very happy I am sure. Lots to do to get it into shape, that's the next thing I have to think about, but at least this is the start of more positive times ahead. I am so looking forward to making it our home, with all our choices in it, and all our things around us again. And I will have a whole new garden to create and enjoy!!!! There is absolutely nothing there at the moment so it is all to do!!! Wow, can't wait to get started!! I know myself pretty well and I am not one to sit back and settle for the compromise so it is an all or nothing situation for me. I have ideas and thoughts about what it is all going to look like, only first I have to go out searching for floors and paints and providers of all our amenities........I am headed for a steep learning curve!!!
Just have to think of the right name for our house. I have always lived in a house with a name, and it is inconceivable that I should start now, so my thinking cap is on, and I know one will spring to mind in my dreams and I will just know the right one when I hear it.
My house in Zoetermeer was called Tynham House. D'you know why? Well the housing estate was built on the site of an old orchard and all the streets were named after apples. And I am English. The first orchard in England was created by Henry Vlll in Kent, in a village called Tynham. My father's family all come from Kent...............so that is why I called the house this name.
My house in Penistone was called Hickle House, because when we went to live there, Becci was only 18 months old, and when she saw the house she said "what a hickle ( little) house, mummy'! She lisped when she was small so this is how it came out of her mouth - aah. And where I have lived now is called Littleleat because a leat is a stretch of water, as in Longleat in England. We only have a very small drop of water at the end of the garden so it is little.............ergo Littleleat!!!
All the houses (well almost all) I lived in when I was at home with my parents were named after Shropshire hills..............so it is a tradition I intend to live by once more. I need to come up with a name that relates to our situation now, but that isn't corny or I will have you laughing at me!!! We had one or two other names scattered amongst them, notably in St Margarets Bay: Temple Cottage, named after Miss Temple who lived there years ago. Hard to change a name when it has history attached to it. Ah well,  let you know on this one, right?
Sue xx

Monday, 28 June 2010

Quote of the Day

"Love is a temporary madness. It erupts like an earthquake and then subsides. And when it subsides you have to make a decision. You have to work out whether your roots have become so entwined together that it is inconceivable that you should ever part. Because this is what love is. Love is not breathlessness, it is not excitement, it is not the promulgation of promises of eternal passion. That is just being "in love" which any of us can convince ourselves we are. Love itself is what is left over when being in love has burned away, and this is both an art and a fortunate accident. Your mother and I had it, we had roots that grew towards each other underground, and when all the pretty blossom had fallen from our branches we found that we were one tree and not two." 
-St. Augustine
This is my favourite description of Love from '"Captain Correlli's Mandolin". The doctor is asking his daughter what she feels for the Italian soldier, and tells her this is what love really is.......................

Sunday, 27 June 2010

What drama!!!

Oh dearie me, what a drama the England/ Germany game turned out to be?!! Firstly, I admit we did not deserve to win as we were outclassed by the opposition, but the unfairness of Lampards disallowed goal still stands. That was such a poor decision on behalf of the referees.....and such bad luck for us!! But there it is, we are going home and there is nothing more to be done about it. Tomorrow Holland play so we will just have to get behind them and hope they do better.
It has been so hot this weekend hasn't it? Makes one grumpy and tired and in need of changes of clothes throughout the day!! Even the cats were too warm today. Genghis stayed out all night in the cool and has slept all day instead, which he has every right to do at his age! Finka has been sitting in the garden under the umbrella instead of actively chasing everything that moves, and is now also asleep for the night!
I went for a walk this afternoon before going to Ann's to watch the game and have dinner with them, and that gave me time to reflect on several things that are on my mind at the moment. I am not sure whether it helped or hindered however!!! It did make me come to one decision which I have just put into action, and that feels good if it all comes off, and the rest I will just have to wait and see. This inert state is no good for me!!
Tim went to the Ijsselmeer this afternoon and came home with lovely cherry red back and calves and a sore chest!!! He is not used to being outside in this extremely warm weather and so lay on his back and got burnt. I have still got some really great lotion for him which helps ease the heat so he is now plastered in that for the night!! I am tired and hoping beyond all hope for a good nights sleep. I really need it as I think sleep deprivation is setting in!!!!
Sue xx

Saturday, 26 June 2010

Hot, hot hot!!

This week has seen some lovely weather here and luckily it is continuing into the weekend. Washing dries in no time and there is little wind and just blue, blue, blue sky. It was so hot today that I shifted around the garden from chair to chair; under the umbrella and back out again; near the wall and on the lounger......with the cats sitting underneath whichever one I chose! Finka wandered around happily all day, and she is now asleep on her chair. Genghis, who hates it when it gets too hot, is now wandering around outside for the night as this is a more comfortable temperature for him. They predict even warmer weather tomorrow, so I think I will make the most of it before heading off to watch ENGLAND v GERMANY with Ann!!!! I do so really hope it is a great game and that we win, of course! All depends on whether the team have found their inspiration now or not, and how the players will gel on the pitch etc. And whether Rooney has broken his duck and is now in full flow or not.............sometimes I think the pressure just gets too great and it stifles him and he cannot perform naturally and freely. Over thinking the whole thing I guess....anyway, it will go as it goes, we cannot go anything about it from the wings!!! But it would be such a shame if we go out so soon.................
Sue xx

Friday, 25 June 2010

Finka has an extraordinary week

Little Finka is enjoying the summer sunshine to her great delight. She is out in the garden all day long if we are home, and otherwise under supervision. On Wednesday when I got home she had obviously caught a bird as there were millions of feathers strewn all over the downstairs rooms and she was very pleased with herself! And today Tim spotted her creeping into the living room, completely soaked through ( apart from her tail) because she had dived headfirst into the pond!!!! He dried her off and it doesn't seemed to have dampened (ha, ha) her spirits one iota!!! So we have to keep a close eye on her from now on in, as she is exploring her environment to the max!
Sue xx

Sunday, 20 June 2010

First programme

At the end of the first airing of this series, Gareth and his teenagers performed this for their parents and friends. I just thought it would be interesting to compare this performance with the one the chosen crew give at the end of the series..............
Sue xx

A post of thanks

One of the things I like the most about keeping a blog is the number of regular visitors I get and the interest they show in my ordinary life. So I felt it was time to say a big THANK YOU to those of you who keep returning to me day in, day out, even when I have said absolutely nothing significant at all, just me babbling rambling on about something 'n nothing!
The feedjits are great for allowing me to see who and where you all are, when you have looked and what comments you may have left. There are people in 107 countries around the world who continue to visit my posts and that is simply amazing. Of course the ones closer to home are more identifiable such as my daughter, friends and family, and sometimes I can work out the round robin that occurs when they visit in sequence......fun!!! As for the rest of you delightful people, I can only guess how you found me, what lead you to read a little or return more frequently, so I thank you all from the bottom of my heart for your support, interest and visits to my humble blog. Have a great day!!! :-)
Sue xx

Saturday, 19 June 2010

My favourite's back!!

I do so love a good series don't you? And when Gareth Malone is involved you know there is going to be music and more music happening. This time the challenge he's been given is to get 50 teenagers to perform as the chorus in a new contemporary opera at one of the world's most prestigious opera houses in the world: Glyndebourne, in Sussex. It's called The Knight Crew and is a modern day version of King Arthur and his knights. In this first programme Gareth was searching for his chorus in schools and community centres and juvenile remand centres. Kids with no interest in opera, kids from varying backgrounds, kids who like heavy rock, shy, extrovert, talented, insecure, nervous - he had the lot! Over a period of two months he got them to sing and perform extracts from Carmen in order to be ready to audition for the opera in front of the Glyndebourne team. Out of the 100 he took to the audition, 47 were selected. Next time they will start to learn the score...................I just adore watching how he takes these children on the musical journey of a lifetime, and always cry at the last one when they will be performing the opera. This is television at it's best in my opinion because if the young people of today are not exposed to the real world of the performing arts, it will eventually die out. It's ok to assume that the more' privileged' youngsters will be given such opportunities to experience opera and ballet and symphonies etc but nowadays it is not the given that it once was when I went to school. I was lucky to have great music teachers who took us to London to the opera and ballet and we had a choir and performed Gilbert & Sullivan operettas every summer. I learnt to play the piano and had singing lessons, and my love of music is as much a part of me as my love of words and books and poetry and art.............and I went to an ordinary secondary school in Kent. I am fascinated to watch these teenagers go through their individual processes within the context of the opera scene and within a group and a professional operatic circle of performers. Several years ago I went with my daughter to the opera in Verona. What an experience for her! It was superb. I should do it more often, so that is my promise to myself for the future; do the things I love, fill my senses with them and make it matter again. I have sadly neglected these joys for the last decade which is such a great sadness to me. That trip to the Royal Albert Hall has just got to get back up there at the top of my shortlist of treats!!!! Anyway, watch Gareth and his chorus on BBC2 during the week or the repeat on Saturdays.
Sue xx

Well done!

So Holland won 1-0 and we are happy for them. The rest of the day sees me busy packing up stuff in my hobby room......and even though I thought there would be so much to throw away, it is only a couple of bin bags worth after all!! It is depressing work, I can tell you that! Box after box is piling up on the landing and in my scrap room and I am still not done. Genghis is here wandering around on the table tops wondering why he is being allowed to! There is so much to label and pack and identify...................and when it is all done, I wonder where it will end up? Will I see it all again this year or will it be stored in an attic whilst we settle and make a new home for ourselves, or will there be room to get some of it out and use it; I really don't have a clue. I'm listening to pretty depressing music too, but that is my choice and mood probably! Good music but of the sentimental kind that lends itself to how I feel at the moment. "Carry me home" is currently playing - see what I mean?!!!
I suppose on the bright side I am winning the battle of the boxes as there is only the top floor left to do after this one. I cannot pack up my clothes or bed or essential everyday necessities of course until the last minute, but living the spartan life is not for me. I miss my things so much, and I miss the sense of myself that has now left these four walls and a roof. I hate the neglected gardens and the drabness of my world so very much. Hmm, How badly do I need 40 winks right now? Very!!! So I think it is a question of laying on the settee and closing my eyes and praying that I actually sleep for a while. No-one disturb me please!!!
Sue xx

England not looking so hot!

So the second match was not really much better than the first although we did have plenty of chances this time, none of which were taken sadly, and turned into goals. It was a faster match so less boring, but we did not shine, lads, and listening to the Dutch commentators we were quite annoyed by their derogatory opinions to say the least. C'mon, we are not that bad!!!!
I thought sport was supposed to be for the common good and for fun!!? Saying that Rooney and several other members of the team 'cannot play football' was unfair and uncalled for, and certainly not a very sporting attitude. Tim and I were disappointed as I imagine other people would be too. Unfortunately the BBC aren't showing our games, it is on ITV, so we cannot listen to our own commentators talking us through the matches, so I suppose we will just have to turn the telly off at half time from now on!!!
It is a wet start to the weekend. Raining hard first thing but the sun is out there hiding behind the clouds as I saw a beautiful 'silver lining' as I drove back home this morning. Driving towards Tim's work the sky was purple-black with the rain streaming down in Enkhuizen from the look of it. God is in his heaven we say when there is the silver lining showing.............I hope that is a good omen for us this week!!!
Sue xx

Wednesday, 16 June 2010

Tim passes his school diploma!!

So today at 3.05pm Tim got the call we were sitting waiting nervously for........but knew was coming! He had passed the other subjects for his diploma..........with a 9.5 for the English exam which was pronounced ineligible and void so hey, not passed his diploma!!! The sad truth is that if there had been no mistake made by his school, he would now know that he had really passed...but under the circumstances, and with the marks he already has for English, he will take the higher exam on Monday and be sure that his diploma is safely in his pocket. At the end of this month he will know the final result, but we went ahead and celebrated all the same. He and Arjan both passed as did all of Tim's class apart from one lad who just has one re-sit to make. So an excellent afternoon for us all!! Well done Tim and Arjan and Chris!!!! Here's Tim popping the cork in the garden - a bit of bubbly for good measure, right?! CONGRATULATIONS TIM!!! And hanging out the flag with his school bag on it of course, which is a Dutch tradition. We only have English flags so we raised the Union Jack high and told everyone he had passed. Lots of congratulatory texts and messages from all our friends and family so that was really great. I feel so relieved that he passed the other exams making the stress less for Monday. He can now think about getting prepared for his college course in August, and settle into his chosen career knowing that he can do it. I wish Becci had been here today but she sent her love so we were 'together in spirit' I feel. We are all very proud of him and it will be even better when he gets the last result through and we really can lay our hands on that bit of paper!!!!
Sue xx

Quote of the day

" Don't be afraid to
take a big step
if one is indicted.
You can't cross a chasm
in two small jumps."
David Lloyd George.

An interesting day for us.................

Not being one to tempt fate, I will just say, good luck to everyone waiting by their phones this afternoon!!! Fingers and toes already tightly crossed!
Sue xx

Monday, 14 June 2010

About the books.......

the second book I read this weekend is entitled 'The Very Thought of You' by Rosie Alison. It is about a young girl who is evacuated from London during the second world war. She goes to live in Yorkshire at a huge old house which is turned into a school by the owners; a couple who are not in love with one another, are childless and the husband suffered Polio so is in a wheelchair. The central theme of the book is love, in all its forms, real and imagined, as experienced through the main characters and Anna, the child in the story. I did not find the book convincing, nor of an emotional depth that moved me to tears or laughter, but there was just one page that did touch me, and this is what I will remember the book for:
" Of all the many people we meet in a lifetime, it is strange that so many of us find ourselves in thrall to one particular person. Once that face is seen, an involuntary heartache sets in for which there is no cure. All the wonder of the world finds shape in that one person and thereafter there is no reprieve, because this kind of love does not end, or not until death.
For the lucky ones, this love is reciprocated. But for so many others, everywhere, anywhere, there follows an unending ache of longing without relief. Incurable love is a great leveller. Yet I believe that this bittersweet love is better by far than the despair which blights those with a dead heart."
Sue xx

Hup Holland, Hup!!!

Ok, so I can already hear the children blowing their tooters this morning, and we still have to wait til 13.30!!! It is Holland against Denmark this afternoon, so I hope that Holland beats them soundly. A good result would be super, so Tim and I will cheer the home team on with our English flag and our Dutch beer!!! How's that for a compromise? Seems fair to me.............
Sue xx

Sunday, 13 June 2010

Hmm, not the start.......

England wanted was it?!! Such a shame we had to tie in this way............our own fault!!! But there is not use crying over spilt milk as we say, so we just have to get on with it and make sure it never happens again. Onwards and upwards, chaps!!!
The sun has made its return this weekend so that is something nice. I have got some great books to read at the moment, from trusty old Amazon.co.uk. They are similar in storyline but I didn't choose them for that reason; one just attracted me by its title and cover more than anything! I will list them another time, but for now I have started reading 'The last train to Liguria.' The writers style is incredibly flowery and I am not sure yet whether I like that or not, but I think the story is interesting so I will give it my best shot before I decide if I am going to persevere or not. I read 'The lovely bones' one morning and thought it was going to be gruesome (which is why I avoided the film), but in fact it was only an average book with an easy read and nothing outstanding to say about it at the end!
I read endings first. It is a crime for many, but if the last couple of pages are a waste of time and a total let down, I leave the book sitting on the shelf for someone else to buy her. I cannot abide being disappointed with a weak and inconclusive ending. The book I am writing has got no end....because nothing has happened yet to give me my last two pages, but in my head it is already written and complete and I know exactly what I am going to write when the time comes. I imagine that fixing the end is where many writers start, otherwise how does one know where one is heading?...imagine Tolkien for example; did he know how his trilogy was going to end before he started writing it or not?.............
Anyway, I am babbling but only because I haven't written my blog recently and I am making up for lost words here this morning!! I am having a day off today, from all the stresses and strains of preparing to move house, and just ignoring the boxes and the bin bags and the rubbish I have accumulated over the years...........can all wait until tomorrow, right, Scarlett???
Sue xx

Wednesday, 9 June 2010

The rains came.........

It was beautiful watching and hearing the thunderous rain yesterday afternoon. It came with such force and speed, fantastic! It pumped the pond and bird bath full to the rim in less than half an hour! Garden all watered now......
Poor Finka hadn't seen proper rain before, and she didn't understand what it was, so when it stopped she was going crazy to get back out into the garden. Once there, some more rain fell and she scurried indoors again dripping wet and meowing as only a Siamese can!!!! We wrapped her in the towel and rubbed her dry but it was so funny to see her reaction at the time! I guess she will think twice about rain next time!
Sue xx

Tuesday, 8 June 2010

recent photos

Hillie and I on her birthday at the end of May. Cheers!!! At Oosterleek where we went to sing in the choir festival. Some of us enjoyed a great meal beforehand but I couldn't get everybody in the shot unfortunately... Michelle and her sister who were sitting opposite me. Dear, dear Finka, who has found her spot in the garden, next to the pond where the birds come to drink water.............................she is so beautiful now and her initial nickname is undeserved now that she is 9 months old and gorgeous!!!
sue xx

Monday, 7 June 2010

Good friends

They say you don't choose your family but you do choose your friends, and I just wanted to say that I chose very well indeed!!! My friends are wonderful and they surround me with such love and affection that I feel enormously honoured and proud to be called friend by all of them in return. So thank you all from the bottom of my heart. You make me feel on top of the world!
Sue xx

Sunday, 6 June 2010

6 June, D-Day.

'We shall go on to the end, we shall fight in France,
we shall fight on the seas and oceans,
we shall fight with growing confidence and growing strength in the air,
we shall defend our Island, whatever the cost may be,
we shall fight on the beaches,
we shall fight on the landing grounds,
we shall fight in the fields and in the streets,
we shall fight in the hills;
we shall never surrender,'
An extract from Winston Churchill's famous speech made just two days prior to the D-Day Landings in Normandy. Remember......