Les Mis Trailer

Monday, 29 November 2010

Narnia returns

Oh this is my childhood coming to life on the big screen!!! Tim and I have seen the other two films so this completes the trilogy for us, just in time for Christmas. It is little wonder that I grew up a dreamer with a strong belief in make believe; all those stories of Peter Pan, and Alice, and wardrobes..........my ability to suspend belief is as strong now as it ever was!! So I love this sort of movie!  Enjoy.
Sue xx

Teenagers, grr!!!!

Sometimes it pays to get assertive on the telephone!!!! In my despair over the lack of co-operation from the boy this morning, who failed to answer the door when I was out thereby missing out on the delivery of a Christmas present ( for him), I got so frustrated about the thought of having to go to Alkmaar after work tomorrow night that I rang the delivery company and asserted my disappointment etc. I can't believe the delivery guy waited long enough or Tim would have got to the door in time, so I laid it on a bit thick and was given the depot number to ring to see whether I could organise it better for us. And I could! Now all I have to do is get to Bovenkarspel after work tomorrow and all will be well. Tim not talking to me any more of course - seems to be standard response from him at the moment, and loud music is blaring out of his locked bedroom. Joy of joys...............don't you just love the stress of Christmas?!!!! ;-)
Sue xx

Weather Watching

Well, according to the BBC forecast I ought to be ok for Thursday since only light snow showers are forecast for Sheffield and in Leeds on Friday it will be sunny!!! It would appear that Tuesday is the turning point really as then the snow moves inland from the east coast and will affect more places..............I feel rather nervous I must admit. Looking outside here right now it is still dark and grey - there has been a heavy frost overnight and it is white on all the tops. Brr! I will have to go out later on but then it is back indoors for the rest of the day.
Well, Anne got through to the semi-final of Strictly. I do not agree with the vote I am afraid as despite being amusing to watch, one cannot call it dancing and that is what the show is all about. Patsy was better..........and Gavin is doing his best and actually starting to enjoy learning the dance routines so go Gav!!! I think it must be his sports instinct taking over - wanting to win at everything. Ah well, just have to keep watching and see how events unfold. I still would like to see Matt and Aliona as winners.
Time to get dressed I suppose; my towel ought to be warm enough by now!!!! :-)
Sue xx

Sunday, 28 November 2010


Just wrapping presents and thinking about what I need to do and buy when in the mighty world of Tesco's!! I found the menu I cooked in 2008 whilst up in the attic; my word, I was ambitious!!!!
This is how it read then:
Salmon Pate on Toast
Prawns in Rose-Marie Sauce
Lemon & Herb Roast Turkey
& Stuffing
Crispy Roast Potatoes
Chardonnay Carrots
Festive Red Cabbage
Sprouts a la Tim
Roast Parsnips
Chipolata Sausages in Bacon Rolls
Home-made Bread Sauce
Cranberry Relish
Madeira Gravy
New Zealand White Wine
White Chocolate & Red Berry Trifle
Coffee & Liqueurs

Hm, this will need some living up to this year!! Some dishes are a tradition in our family so they always appear, but I think some shuffling around is required this year as I like to try different things. At the moment we are considering doing away with the starters and replacing them with early drinky-poos and nibbly bits!!! ( we know what we mean!!!) Starting the day off with some Harvey's is a given, but I have found a really good sounding cocktail that I want to try out, with some small nibbles on the side whilst I finish the cooking off in the kitchen. Having friends here on Boxing Day is making me very happy, and I do so enjoy preparing this dinner for everyone. Tim likes his puddings the best but the jury is still out on what I will make for him this year. There will definitely need to be a slimming alternative for me!!!!
I have now reached just over the 7kilo mark and I feel great. I achieved my target for England yesterday so that is a good feeling, and I intend to stay on the straight and narrow when I am away. It can take a month to lose 7 kilos but a weekend to put them all back on again!!! Life is so unfair!!!!!!
One recipe for a delicious Mulled Wine is this one, which is known as: 
                                                              THE OXFORD BISHOP

  • 1 whole orange
  • 16 whole cloves
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon ground mace
  • ½ teaspoon allspice
  • ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
  • 75cl (26½fl oz) bottle of port
  • the juice of ½ orange
  • whole nutmeg
You will need a small baking tray.
Preheat the oven to 200°C/gas mark 6. Begin by cutting the orange in half and studding each half with 8 cloves, then place the halves on a baking tray in the centre of the oven to bake for 20 minutes.
Meanwhile, pour 275ml (9¾fl oz) of water into a small saucepan, add the sugar, cinnamon, mace, allspice and ginger, then over a high heat bring the mixture to simmering point, giving it a good stir. Let it boil briskly until it has reduced by at least half, then take off the heat and leave on one side. 
When you're ready to serve, empty the port into a saucepan and add the baked orange (plus the cloves). Pour in the spice mixture, followed by the orange juice, then heat gently without actually bringing to the boil. 
Serve it in a warmed bowl with the orange halves floating in it and a little grated nutmeg on top.

I make it each year and it goes in a flash! All this talk about food is sending me into my planning and list making mode so time to go downstairs and make that final selection!!!!
Sue xx

North Yorkshire Moors right now!!

Time on my hands

This morning I have sufficient time on my hands to relax and sort out what I want for the coming week. I am still, however, totally frustrated by not being able to find a few things in the boxes in the attic and this is driving me nuts!!! I am missing one picture, one coffee grinder and my cutting mats. So, I braved the cold up there and went a-searching this morning, and came back down with the handbag I need for England, some beautiful scraps I've made previously for Christmas, some templates, and absolutely no sign of what I went up to find!! It is so annoying as they have to be there and I simply cannot lay my hands on them.
It's 11am here, and the overnight frost is still lying heavily on the shed roofs and cars, including mine. I hope it is defrosted before I go out in a couple of hours time.....there is no snow so that is good news, but it is now much colder than before, so who knows?
Tim is allowed to work in the bakery - yeh! He is pleased about it. I thought it would not present a problem but with it being the run-up to Christmas it might have been an issue.
And now I hear that my appointment this afternoon is cancelled so that is disappointing but understandable so that's life. Hey ho...............
Sue xx

Saturday, 27 November 2010

Chilly here

This morning it started to SNOW. Little pieces of white stuff fluttering down out of a grey sky, settling in places and making it feel really wintry! But we don't want it do we?? Becci says on her facebook page that she has got Snow, Snow, Snow!! I have to follow the weather on the BBC this week as it might wreck my plans to travel to the north this coming Thursday..............can't bear to think about it!!! I am so looking forward to seeing everybody again, and yet having lived there myself, I do know how bad it can get, so I have to stay positive but realistic about the coming few days weather.

What have I done today - ordered my afzuigcap - ventilator for the oven - finally! It's been hard saving up so much money for it but it is done now, and I only hope it fits and does its job well. At least there is still time to get it fitted before Christmas, which would make me amazingly happy, so fingers crossed for that.
I spent the rest of the morning toe-ing and fro-ing getting the shopping in for Tim whilst I am away, getting a snow shovel and the protectors for the car windscreen and rear window, and generally organising us for my little 'escape to the country'! How is it that no matter what I see our son wear in one week, it bears absolutely no correlation to the amount he has for the wash? I must fold and replace at least half of it without the need to wash it, and he never notices at all.
He has a dilemma to solve this morning at work. I am delighted to say that he is doing so well at the bakery they have asked him to work for the week running up to Christmas, with pay, however, he had also wanted to work at his Saturday job too, so now he wants to switch if it can be arranged. I have left him to work that one out with his supervisors, but I do feel if he can work in the bakery that is more useful to his training and career than his weekend work.......
I am curious to hear what has been agreed.
I went to a Christmas Fayre last night with my friend Gebke, at a day centre which is run by our organisation. There were some super gifts which the clients had made in the workshops, for example, I bought some gorgeous black and white candles from the candle-making department, some cards and a glass necklace, for next to nothing in comparison with shop bought goods. I know my friends will de delighted with them too, as they are destined for England. If I still had my camera I would show you, but unfortunately, I am too honest, and I cannot get something back on my insurance because it was caused by my own fault and it was my own camera................I am heart-broken because I simply cannot replace it right now, and I do so love my camera!! Ce la vie............time for a letter to Santa maybe????
Well, having run around all morning I am now going to indulge in some creativity myself, bye.
Sue xx

Friday, 26 November 2010

early morning study

Ouch! It was not through choice that I found myself sitting at the computer at 4am this morning!! Seriously, I would have preferred sleep!! But it was a terrible night with little real sleep and I was awake off and on until I woke up properly around 3 o'clock, and couldn't go back to sleep after that point. So what is a girl to do? Sit and write essays!!! It is now 5.36am and I am flagging. All thought - out and done. My head hurts and throbs, the bed looks like a bomb hit it, I'm dying for a cup of tea, and the alarm just went off!!! Yes, I have to go to work today, so time to gird my loins, take a shower and get started on the proper business of the day.
Before I do that, the last minutes of my marathon essay writing veered off on a search for suitable quotations to use in my personal essay. I sought out my personal favourite: Pooh. So this is what he has to say to you this morning:-

'promise me you’ll never forget me because if I thought you would I’d never leave.’

Thursday, 25 November 2010


As usual Tim Holtz has outdone himself this year with this fabulous video introducing his 12 tags of Christmas. Cannot wait to see each and every one!! I have got mine somewhere in the attic, so want to add some more to my collection this year, but looking at the kit he uses, I will have to improvise a lot!! I was starting to worry that he wasn't going to come up with the goodies this year, but I am impressed with what I have seen so far.
Still lacking in the christmas card ideas though I am trying to find my mojo fast now, and create just a few to send out. I am not planning on making them all for the first time in several years, which is sad but a fact of life right now. I did go to the scrap store this morning..........and wow, aren't there a lot of new and innovative items available since I was last there!!!! I had a wander around the store, chatted with the ladies there, drank coffee, restricted myself to the essentials on my list, and was strong enough not to go overboard, and came home again. Must be a first for me!!! Now I just have to make up my mind and start.

I broke my camera this week which is heart-breaking for me as I love taking pictures. I am hopeful that it is insured so have been looking around to see what is out there if I am able to replace it. Fingers crossed they are going to pay out first....................I love my Lumix, but the Canon is tempting too; any advice for me out there? It will come down to simplicity, price, screen, functions and size!!!!Has to fit into my handbag. Tim is lending me his for my trip next week so hope that is easy to use - and he has got a good battery in it still. Add another thing to my Saturday 'to do' list. Time is running out fast and I need  Saturday for last minute present buying, housework, food shopping and all the other practicalities one has to see to when going away and leaving cats and son behind. But it is only 4 days, a return ticket, and 45 minutes away by air, so hardly worth worrying about really. I imagine I will always want a foot in both camps as they say, so which ever one I am in at the time, the pull from the other one will be just as strong. Two hearts, remember?
Sue xx

Wednesday, 24 November 2010

Tough time

This has been a tough time for me, for several reasons, but I hope that it has now passed. I am a positive creature but when things are hard for me, I tend to get inside my shell and wait for it to pass. However, there is always something to cheer me up when I least expect it, and that makes the rest bearable. I am learning more and more about myself in the process, and that is in its turn cause for celebration.
Its late  now though and I need my sleep, so thanks for being so patient with me, and goodnight.
Sue xx

Tuesday, 23 November 2010

My favourite track from Progress

This is my favourite track from their new album, and it is fantastic. Playing all the way to work and back again!!! Well, something has to keep me sane right now..............
Sue xx

Saturday, 20 November 2010


Today our friend Ann is 50. I am just sitting here before going to her party, and doing the last minute things etc. I have been in Amsterdam all day, a long, hard day, on my course, so am only just home, and trying to squeeze some quiet time for myself before I go out. It is necessary to come down from the place in my head where I have been thinking and feeling and working so hard all day. I need to eat too, and drink something and just relax and get rid of my headache. Then it is party time!!!

Friday, 19 November 2010

Quiet as a mouse.......sshh..........

I am going through a quiet period so my blogging is rather lacking right now, sorry about that. I am sure I will have something more to say soon....................
Sue xx

Wednesday, 17 November 2010

Harry Potter

....................for the record, I was not the only one in the cinema who cried when Dobby dies.....................
Sue xx

Monday, 15 November 2010

Hectic times ahead

Things are getting busier as we approach the end of the year. Can you believe that it is almost December?! ( yup, I skip right over November in my haste to get to the 1st!).
The coming weeks are especially hectic as I am working most days, and have so many other things to squeeze in around them as well. I am starting to really learn the value of lazy Sundays!! Not that I am complaining, just stating a fact, and sometimes it is my own fault when I agree to do another day at work next week.....but it is down to economics I guess; there are no days in December, or January or even February that I am able to work so what I earn now has to stretch and stretch and s..t..r..e..t..c..h!!!!!
I have to base my plans on what I know today and not what I hope might happen tomorrow regarding work, so thats the situation. But! I do get those lovely 4 days away...............and boy, am I going to treasure them!!
Finally, a day without rain. Wonderful. I even did the windows at the back!!! Not my favourite job at all, but it seemed too good a day to ignore them. I am still thinking about the ones upstairs as I don't fancy hanging out of them at all!! And I suspect that little miss Finka would be there like a shot if she saw an open window..........currently she and Genghis are hidden under the quilt nice and snug and warm.
I have done my Monday study so that feels good. Every weekend is taken up with the course right now, so I am looking forward to the second practical day this coming Saturday. It will be interesting to hear how everyone else is getting on. I am curious, that is true.
Well, not much else happening in my world right now; what about yours?
Sue xx

Saturday, 13 November 2010

Thursday, 11 November 2010

17 November.....

Tim and I are going to see this film! We read the book ages ago but this is going to be superb! Plan is:
work/school; meet in Schagen; Macdonalds for Tim; film; home. Done! Until 20th July next year for part 2.
Sue xx

First autumn storm

Its blowin' a gale outside right now and my poor car was being thrown from one side of the road to the other when I went to collect Tim from the bakery! Poor Phoebe doesn't like wind! It is cold, and windy, and wet and 'orrible. At least we are the lucky ones now that we are home, and all nice and warm indoors.I am sparing a thought for those who are out in it still!!
I couldn't fix my mobile so in the end I went to the shop in town this morning and got it blocked on my phone since I never ever use it anyway. It seemed the safest way for me! They have no charged me anything so I was pleased about that too. Phew!
And on a more positive note: 6.8kilos are gone!!! I am almost at a stone's loss so that is fabulous! My motivation is still good and I have not broken it one single time so far............so that is good news. I see the change now so that is hopefully going to help keep me motivated. I have taken a new photo so that I can keep on seeing the difference myself cos that helps me a lot.
Finka is jowling loudly at the moment, no idea why but she is not amused. She is not happy that Genghis is staying on the settee all day instead of being by her side upstairs, at least that is what I think the problem must be. She is running around the landing grizzling! Poor old Genghis does not want to appease her I fear.........trouble in cat heaven!!
I am starting to feel a little sleepy now as it was our 3.30am wake up call this morning - groan! Tomorrow is the same, but I think a little afternoon nap is called for, so bye bye.
Sue xx

Wednesday, 10 November 2010


I was just browsing through my planned visit to England next month, and stopped by at the Chatsworth House site just to cheer me up. I found these photos there, the one above and the one below!!!
The House is presenting a Russian Christmas story this year and here is the Sugar Plum Fairy opening this years decorations with some local school children all dressed up!! Of course being a Russian theme there will be Cossacks and Peter and the Wolf, and wonderful Russian Concerto's playing.........oh, I am so delighted to be going!!!
Sue xx

Why do I have to browse when I don't want to?!

My own fault. I pressed the wrong button on my mobile and now the browser is on constantly and neither Tim nor I can find the bloomin' button to get rid of it! It is costing me money, and I can't afford that so if anyone knows how  to cancel the browser setting on a Samsung mobile, PLEASE tell me!!!!
Sue xx

Tuesday, 9 November 2010

A new look

The first time I looked in the mirror when the hairdresser had finished cutting, it was still a shock! Almost entirely grey now that the last ends with colour have been cut off. I keep looking at myself, trying to decide what I feel!!! It is quite dark instead of fair, which is strange for me, but then again, there are whispers of brown still as highlights here and there, and it is all my own, finally, after years of enslavement to colouring my hair!! So, what with the diet 'n all.......who will recognise me when I go away?! Will you?!
I took myself off for some retail therapy this morning - window shopping really, but I don't go very often so it felt like a treat. I spied a couple of present ideas but that was about it. The one shop I wanted to visit was closed so that was a nuisance since I will have to go again now! :-) But still, I am getting on with it slowly, so today is my day for doing other things.
Sue xx

Wet start to the day

It was so cold last night when I got into bed - the first real sign that the days are getting colder. This morning it was equally hard getting out!!! especially when I see how hard it is raining.
I am going to the hairdressers, and am debating whether to do really short so that the last remnants of colour get cut out, or not...its a hard one to decide. I think I will leave it up to my hairdresser to 'make the cut' (ha, ha) and  see what she thinks best. I think it might look rather silly to just leave 1cm of coloured ends on the rest!!! Hm, I will know soon as the appointment is early.

Despite the rain I think I may go on a little trip today! I have got some wishes up my sleeve for 'good diet behaviour' and I want to call them in now!! Just my way of saying that I am proud of my efforts so far, and don't want to weaken or give in. I will take care on the motorway, promise, ok?
Sue xx

Monday, 8 November 2010

Beginning to get the urge to bake this!!

I wasn't going to bother making my cake this year since Tim and I will be alone for Christmas but when I sent the recipe to Ineke this morning, it got me wanting to start!! I am torn between the need to follow my traditional cooking plan and my diet, since I won't be able to eat it anyway..........but it is sooo nice to make!! I guess this year I will have to pass and stick to the Mince Pies instead! Can't deprive Santa of those can we?....
Sue xx

Its all academic to me!!!

Today I have patiently sat and written up my professional development essay as far as I can go! It is going to be a very, very long one by the end of ten months!!! It was quiet at home, and I had told myself that this was going to be my day for studying, so I am happy to give myself a pat on the back and say I did it!!
Now I only have to read lots more before this coming weekend, and the following study day in Amsterdam in a fortnight!! Why oh why do textbooks have such small writing and such big words????.........

I have started my advent calendar today....no, not opening it or putting it out on display, silly, but rather making a simple, clear one for myself to follow as I prepare for Christmas. ( there's that word again...better get used to it, eh?!) Alie Edwards has a brilliant idea on her blog for these little cards, which she has aimed at her son when writing the text on them, but I liked the idea and style so have adopted them for myself this year.  I plan to make a small box for them to sit in, so that they can be on the coffee table or in the kitchen and serve as my reminder of what I need to do each day. I love Christmas, and say that shamelessly, and cannot wait for December 1st to come around!! And presently I am going to stamp my wrapping paper and wrap the ones I want to take to England. Once this week is over I will have little time for frivolous things so I have determined to do them this week. ( yes, I can be determined when I want to be!!!)

It has suddenly turned colder, the temperature this morning only 2C when I woke up! That is a huge change from last week when the temperatures were above normal for this time of year. I saw on the BBC last night that gales and very heavy rain is forecast for Britain, and even snow in the highlands, so winter is a-coming!! The cats are snuggled up under their blanket as per usual so I guess they are feeling the change too.
Well, time for something else, my wrists are aching from typing so long today, and my bottom is a totally different shape altogether!!
Sue xx

Sunday, 7 November 2010

Tired out

I feel tired at the end of a busy weekend, both mentally and physically, so am off to bed soon. Just watched in shock when Jimi and Flavia went out of Strictly.............

Our singing went well really I thought. I cycled there as it was such a beautiful afternoon, so that was my exercise for the week!! What I really appreciated though was suddenly turning around and spotting Gebke and Frans in the audience listening to us. It was so nice of them to come along, and afterwards we sat and had a drink together and a chat to round off the day nicely. And now my head is drooping and my eyes feel heavy and I am ready for sleep.
Sue xx


.....maybe playing with black ink ought to wait until tomorrow as despite wearing black in our choir, I don't think it includes gothic-style black fingers and palms!!! oops!
Sue xx

Good going, girl!!

I am delighted to report a 4.6 kilo weight loss since I started my diet plan!!!! I am just 2.9k off where I decided I wanted to be before visiting my friends so maybe it is possible to achieve now............Keep strong, girl!!! Jackie and I had agreed that we would lost half a stone before we saw each other so I have managed that now, so that is great. Just need to keep going, right? A long, long way...............but it sounds less when I say it out loud now anyway!!!

Just trying to decide what to do this morning: something creative or something practical, hmm, not really much of a decision is it?!! I need to start designing our christmas cards and stop procrastinating about it and surfing the blogs for ideas and inspiration 'cos really, I do know what I want to do this year!!! ha! Yes, the girl is on fire!!! Simple and effective is what I am going for this year. I've done twee ( cute) and I've done complicated, so now; nice 'n easy for me!! I have decided on my stamps, I have decided on colours, I have got the tools and the ink and the embossing powder............what's holding me back I wonder? Nothing!!!;-)
This is the last week I will have the time to prepare those I want to take with me to England so the tension is just about right for me to knuckle down and create. So Suzanne, stop thinking, and start inking!!
Sue xx

Saturday, 6 November 2010

A good and positive day

I can share that today went very well and we made a positive start to our study sessions. The whole reality of becoming a counsellor/coach is beginning to sink in, and I have been startled by the reactions I have received so far about what skills and qualities I apparently do possess that might make me good at it eventually. It is a good boost to my confidence anyway! I need to sit down and think through what we did and felt and record it all in the morning before I forget the important points and lose the moment.

Strictly: it was an excellent show this evening and the dancing standard is quite phenomenal this year. What an amazing start to the show with that fantastic routine from Artem and his partner!! I think they might be the dark horses this year...............
the judges were well on form too; what can we say, Craig? OMG?!!!!
I have no idea who will go this weekend, but it could be a shock as there were good couples in the danger zone of middle votes and Ann and Anton were once again very popular with the audience. I have to say that I am ready for them to go now, because I think the other dancers are well ahead in their development and improvement and none of them deserve to go out this week based on their performances this evening.
Not even Gavin, who seems to have  discovered his mojo now that he is back playing rugby again and has finally come out of his shell and danced a good routine - with personality!!!!!

And tomorrow we sing. It promises to be a dry day...............but colder than we are used to. We are singing in shops however, and not outdoors so no worries there. I just hope we sound half decent and that everyone turns up as we are only a small choir with 17 members and we need each and every one to be present. My concern is where on earth the shop called Mith is in Enkhuizen as that is where we start off!!!!

Right now my head is still full of what I learnt and now have to record from today, so better go to sleep and  let it all sink into its rightful order while I slumber.
Sue xx


This is a photo of Masada in Israel. That white zigzag path is the way up to the top of this mountain; I climbed it!!!
It is a very special place for the Israelis because of what it stands for in their history, and the fact that the whole community there was sacrificed. 960 people committed suicide here in preference to being overthrown by the Romans who were encamped at the base of the mountain and preparing their attack. It is a single, isolated rock, and Israeli soldiers take their oath here, spending the whole night on the mountain the night before they graduate into the army " Masada shall not fall again. " It is the second most popular tourist stop after Jerusalem, which is pretty amazing, and is close to the Dead Sea. We did the whole thing of swimming in the Dead Sea, or I ought to say, floating, then Masada, and then walked the most wonderful green valley with an incredible waterfall where we stood under to cool off!!! It was a day of unique experiences for me, and I will never forget it. In fact the complete holiday in which I stayed with an Israeli family was pretty special for me. (Did put me off BBQ's for life however)!!!!

But as you can see, I am up way too early which means my body clock has gone completely astray and I will be 'cream crackered' by this evening! I need the early start though, so it is not a bad thing entirely, because it is our first study day and I want to get everything right. Which means being alert, attentive, observant, reliable, honest, diligent and kind. So into the shower for my boost of all these qualities as I wake up and get cracking!!!!
Sue xx

Friday, 5 November 2010

Three o'clock dip

By three o'clock I was absolutely shattered this afternoon due to getting up at 3.30am this morning with Tim who had to start at the bakery at 4.30am!!! And this is going to be the same from now on!! He went to bed nice and early last night whilst I was at choir, and upon my return there was a little note on my pillow asking me to help wake him up this morning; how could I say no? I did try to go back to sleep for a couple of hours but that wasn't a success really. The upshot of all this was that by three this afternoon I needed to come home from work before I fell asleep at the wheel!! Luckily for me, my colleague took over the last hour, and I came home and went to sleep on the settee for two wonderful hours. Tim was home at 1.15pm but he claims he didn't fall asleep because of his early night..............me, I'm exhausted, so off to bed now, as I have to be very alert tomorrow for my first study day. Lots to do in the morning to prepare for it, and then we will see how it goes. I have baked a delicious smelling date and honey loaf for tomorrow even though I can't eat it myself; diet going well still so have to stay strong!!! It takes an herculean effort on my part to lose weight as it is a terrible struggle to shift even an ounce, so by remaining firm and sticking to it now, I hope to have lost enough that my friends and daughter will actually notice it. Up to now, no-one has, which is a shame, but then again, it is only a little change in my shape, and unless you got up real close and personal you wouldn't feel the difference!!!!! Right?!........

Aagh, every time I put the radio or television on, I see the adverts for Take That, so I am going to have to switch them off. Tim offered to give me the ticket for Christmas but when we looked at the prices, it was simply too outrageous and beyond our means...........but I do cherish the fact that he wanted to do it for me.
It shows his maturity and sensitivity which is something I am happy to see developing. I said I would settle for their new CD instead!!!! He knew how much I had wanted to see Cirque de Soleil and that I was disappointed at not being able to, once again, but hey, life is not always about getting what one wants, is it?
Sue xx

Thursday, 4 November 2010


Today I saw that TAKE THAT are coming to Holland on 18 July next year.......oh how I would love to be there!! They are one of my favourite bands, and it would be a dream come true ( next to the Albert Hall ) to see them.
Just throwing this out into the universe as that magic lamp seems to have disappeared along with the genie!!!!
Sue xx

Remember, remember...

Remember, remember, the 5th of November
The Gunpowder Treason and plot ;
I know of no reason why Gunpowder Treason
Should ever be forgot.

Guy Fawkes, Guy Fawkes,
'Twas his intent.
To blow up the King and the Parliament.
Three score barrels of powder below.
Poor old England to overthrow.
By God's providence he was catch'd,
With a dark lantern and burning match
Holloa boys, Holloa boys, let the bells ring
Holloa boys, Holloa boys, God save the King!
Hip hip Hoorah !
Hip hip Hoorah !
A penny loaf to feed ol'Pope,
A farthing cheese to choke him.
A pint of beer to rinse it down,
A faggot of sticks to burn him.
Burn him in a tub of tar,'
Burn him like a blazing star.
Burn his body from his head,
Then we'll say: ol'Pope is dead.

This is a traditional English poem for tomorrows celebration of Guy Fawkes Night. It is a fun way of remembering a very serious plot to blow up the Houses of Parliament, but these days it is the signal to get out the fireworks, light huge bonfires, eat toffee apples and Parkin, and generally have a good time!! But remember, too, to be careful and wary of those fireworks..........

Well, today got there in the end!! I started off rather shakily but then got used to the fact that if I just stayed in one place and didn't overdo things, it would be fine. Minor cliches along the way, but I did achieve what I set out to do, so that is what counts. 
Tim's first day at the bakery went very well, so well in fact that he is allowed to start at 04.30am tomorrow morning!!!! Woe is me, I have to work as well, so it is going to be an even earlier start than I am used to! He was making cakes which he loves doing, and apparently orders came in today for 20 celebration cakes for the weekend, so I am guessing the baker needs his help!
The weather forecast for tomorrow is not good, so I did my cycling today instead, which was good for my hips, just up to the sewing shop again.....this time for new tags for the zips on my boots which broke recently. It seems having this store just around the corner so to speak, is proving a godsend!!! 
But I have to go. About to make a meatloaf from my diet book, so looking forward to something a little different to eat tonight.
Sue xx

Horrid Hormones

Don't you just hate them?! The slightest change in my hormonal balance reeks havoc with my body, emotions, abilities, concentration, clumsiness, tolerance, brain - everything just goes to pot!!!

This morning I wanted to be chatty and bright but I felt more like a big fat cushion, stuffed full of nothing!
This morning I wanted to carry on printing my photos out but the printer went on holiday for no reason!
This morning I wanted to write some study notes up but my head has emptied over night and I can't think!
This morning my weight had gone up slightly because I am bloated and uncomfortable and it sucks!
This morning I wanted to cycle to the shops but we have hurricane harry in full blow here.................and so it is continuing today, maybe I ought to just go to sleep and hibernate until next week when I will feel better!!!? The alternative remains Alaska!!!!
Sue xx

Wednesday, 3 November 2010

Happy bunny me!!

It is not often that a plan comes together so well for me when it involves technology, but I have been glued to my computer and photoshop for much of today, making my Christmas presents. I am being both thrifty and creative and that makes me happy. I am re-cycling and taking advantage of great photo paper for 0,59cents per 10 sheets at Action, and only the fact that my ink has now run out is stopping me from carrying on! Now I know why I store so many photos in my apple!!! They are all coming in extremely handy for this project..........highly personalised and unique, and totally made by me. I do think that it is 'the thought that counts' when it comes to giving presents. Trying to match person to gift is what matters, and I enjoy the process from start to finish, which is what gives me my pleasure at the end of the day. Knowing my friends well enough to choose something they will think is great and not what it cost. So these little gifts I am making are really all about saying that I am thankful for my friends and value their friendships highly even though we don't see one another that often sadly.
I have lost 3.1kilos!!!
I received my business cards in the post this morning!! They are to enable me to find people willing to be coached or counselled whilst I am training, so handy things to carry around in my purse. I was already sure of the name I was going to use so that was no problem deciding, and the range of designs for free is good enough to keep the costs down to a minimum whilst still handing out something professional I think. So, who wants to be first?!!!
Sue xx

Tuesday, 2 November 2010

Two sides of one coin

It is fairly safe to say that I am an idealist. I see the world through rose-coloured spectacles for the majority of my time, and I would describe myself as innocent and naive when it comes to the less desirable side of life. There are so many things that happen in our world that I cannot even begin to imagine, but then again there is also so much beauty and wonderment, and that creates the balance surely?
I am happy having only one foot on the ground!!! To float a little, to dare to dream, to give flight to my imagination and to simply be able to believe in the magic is so precious a gift to my imagination that it thrills and delights me over and over again. I like to try to just think about writers such as Tolkien and Barrie and understand how all that wonderful storytelling could possibly be in their heads!? Imagine being able to write like that, or have the necessary vision to make a movie like Gone with the Wind? Look at the genius of songwriters like Elton John or Phil Collins, and wonder at how they just sit down and write a song in the shortest of hours........
No, in all the saddest, most poor, most violent, terrible situations man has created, there has always been that little thing called hope, and I need to hold onto that hope because it means we are good and kind and unselfish and loving beings, and I need to believe that of everyone. I am ok with you being my other foot.
Sue xx

My morning......

...is going nicely, thanks! Still raining outside but it is warm as toast here indoors. Me and the cats are treating ourselves to extra heat cos it is so miserable looking out of the window.
I have been out buying CHRISTMAS PRESENTS!!! Yes, the ones I need to take with me to England in a few weeks need to be sourced and bought, wrapped and scrapped ( well, the labels that is)  and I am enjoying myself. I finally found the one perfect tree decoration I always give my daughter each year, but I had to hunt for it! Finally the shop assistants came to my rescue and I was able to buy the second to last one which was on display, the rest all sold out. Lucky me!! I remembered things my friend Jackie had admired whilst she was here so got her something I know she liked, and so I am doing well. I have also just sent Becci my wishlist on Amazon............books, I need more books!!! I was surprised at how lengthy it is now, but then again, I add to it regularly as I spot something new. 'It is my one weakness" ( quote Larkrise postmistress!) Must tell her what she can get for Tim before I forget.........
I have also repotted my poor plants that were desperate for larger pots. Their roots were jammed in tight into their current pots and so they were starting to look a little sickly I thought. But no more; they are rehabilitated and have nice large pots to spread out into and be more beautiful than ever before!!!! :-)
I have also organised my son's birthday surprise for next year when he turns 18. I am a planner, can't help it! I like to know I am well in advance of something I know is happening and needs my attention. Ok, it is not until April, but that is not far away once we get past Christmas and all the other things start to get in the way etc. And I wanted to be absolutely sure that it was possible on the day itself. Can't say what it is here but he will be delighted I am sure. All things said and done I have been a good mummy today and now it is time for me!!
Sue xx

Still following....

...Suze Wienberg's trip to Israel on her blog as she is going to all the places I went to way back then. This morning she had some photos from Yad Vashem, the Holocaust Museum, which I, too, visited whilst I was in Israel.
It was an extraordinary experience for me, and dare I say, life changing, because it does have an intense impact upon your own morals, integrity, consciousness, emotions, and way of choosing to live your own life. I have never been able to see anything related to the Holocaust since being there. It was enough for a lifetime, and incredibly moving. I have seen the War Museum in Warsaw as well, and been to Krakow city and walked through the Jewish Ghetto there, but nothing compares to the images and the documentation and the emotion you get at Yad Vashem. The story is being told by the very people it happened to, and that is something special and unforgettable. I am a better person from having been there.

Its raining as I look out of the window this morning. Dull, misty, grey, all the weather that signals autumn is in full swing! This morning I had the idea of collating all my photos that are of nature..........some task that is going to be but nevertheless I have a plan!!! ( cue lightbulb!!! ) Not going to say what it is, but there is a tiny spark of inspiration flickering in the dark recesses of my non-computerlike brain, which is slowly germinating into something wonderful!! All I can say right now! But first it is ironing for me, got to be done and now is the time!
Sue xx

Monday, 1 November 2010

Wish I had cats eyes

especially when driving at night! Even more so when it is foggy like this evening when I came home from my friend's. It was fine up until I got close to home and then it was like pea soup out there. Luckily it was quiet on the roads so no problem.
Just been talking to my daughter on the phone which was lovely. Not the part about someone hitting her car whilst she was in it..........she says she is fine, but the other person refused to get out of the car, and then just drove off, which is against the law, but Becci couldn't do anything about it as she was rather in shock at the time. She thinks it is ok, but needs to take a better look in the morning. Apart from that she was very happy.

My arm is quite swollen now and very tender, so I think it will be sleeping on the other side tonight for me!  It is starting to feel rather stiff and sore but that is the swelling  I guess. All be over soon!
My Clematis is now planted in the back garden and in the spring I will add a trellis so that it can grow over it and up onto the shed, hiding the bins in the process, at least that is the theory! I am sure it will be fine where I have planted it nice and deeply. I was hoping to buy my hedging plants today but when I went to take a look around the garden centre there was no-one about to assist me and I couldn't find the plants I wanted either, so gave up and went on to my friends house.  I will look closer to home tomorrow morning.
That was the day that was folks!!! Nothing special, the usual stuff that day to day living is all about, eh?
Sue xx

Ouch and double ouch!

An injection in both arms!!! The first one was fine but the second one, sneakily saved til last, was quite painful.........and I have to have another in 6 months time!! So I have plasters on both sides and feel a bit sore on the left..........poor me!
It has been a morning of running around like a headless chicken so I am slowing the pace down now and leaving other housework until tomorrow morning. It can all wait since it will still be there then, right? No night-time elves?........little people who love ironing? Thought not!
The most important things have been done however so I feel I deserve a moments rest.
Sue xx

Frustration runneth over!!!

Dealing with official letters from the tax office, the bank, the health insurance.........oh what a morning I am having!!! You can hear in their voices that they want you to get off the line sooner rather than later and that they are trained to remain calm at all cost, and to repeat what you have said to them back to you in an effort to avoid an angry customer shouting at them! All well and good, but it would be oh so nice if they would just acknowledge it when they have made a mistake. I was pleasant and patient but  I wanted to be sure I understood what was being said to me correctly and that takes time. Phew!! The lady at my bank was far nicer and I appreciated her assistance much more for her pleasant and helpful manner. The others have a lot to learn from someone like her!!! I suppose in the end things were sorted out, but what I find incredibly hard to accept is that if the tax office accidentally pays your money to someone else, then unless it happens to be a family member, the chance of you getting it back is zero!! Thankfully it went to my ex-husband and he is honest enough not to keep something not meant for him, so we can be relieved about that! Otherwise, down the swanney!!!

Ok, this is not stopping the clock from ticking towards my appointment at the doctors so better face up to it and get going. I am going to dig up my Clematis from the old house this morning as well, as it is an  ideal time now to replant it here, and it is a gorgeous plant given to me by a dear friend, so it has special meaning to me.
Sue xx