Les Mis Trailer

Wednesday, 28 September 2011

Time for some photos!!

Scaredy Cat!!!

 The cats simply hate the sight of the hoover coming out of the cupboard and run every which way they can to avoid being anywhere near it when I am busy. Yesterday Genghis decided that hiding in my huge cupboard in the snug, on top of soft curtains, was the safest place to run to! He must have leapt up onto the ironing board and then climbed into the shelf space which is high off the ground to say the least, so desperate was he to avoid the hoover!! For an old boy he did well!!!
Teeny tiny workspace.
Right behind where I sit at the computer is a very small workspace for my crafting work. As you can see it gets a little over crowded at times!! I was not in the mood to sit and absorb telly last night, so decided to get busy with the Christmas Cards  I am committed to making this year. Last year was the first time in ages that I didn't make many, so I am determined to make up for that this time around. I love these new papers from My Minds Eye called the 12 days of Christmas. The smaller paper pads are perfect for making cards as there is so much less wastage and it is more manageable when you have limited room to stack them up. I am a traditionalist in as much as I prefer the reds and greens associated with Christmas, and tend to stick within this range of colours for most of my Christmas crafting. I was delighted to see some really useful paper in the Aldi yesterday that is perfect for stamping over and wrapping parcels! So much more personal and so much cheaper so good all round. I bought a silver and a kraft coloured roll so that is me done I guess. Ah, just wondering when Tim Holtz will let it be known whether he is making his famous Tags this year or not . . . .

I've been awake for a full hour now this morning - bah! I hate the 4am alarm clock that Tim sets off!!! I never seen able to get back to sleep after he goes to work, and then I get a headache later in the day which results in me being cranky before bedtime which means I go to bed too early to fall asleep quickly which means I lie awake for ages which means I do lots of dreaming which means I actually get less quality sleep which means I am tired again the following morning . . . you get my drift??!!!!
Sue xx

Tuesday, 27 September 2011


. . . . a day off!!! Not that it will be relaxing - too much to get done starting with an hours worth of ironing which I am SO glad I got out of the way first this morning. And sending emails to companies who are disappointing in their quality of service and delivery; waiting such a long time again from something that was sent first class on 15th September!!! Too long wouldn't you agree? And yesterday I wanted to kick off the Christmas present scene with an order. . but no, that wasn't possible either! Frustrations are running high my friends!!

The weather is the consolation prize this week. I am thinking pansies in pots - aren't you? Over the weekend I pulled up the summer plants and exposed the earth underneath but since I have a zero tolerance for empty flower beds I am hoping to fill a few gaps today. In my head I am planning the best and most economical route for the car to take. Living in a small village things are always a trip away, and there are road diversions a-plenty around here right now. So the Aldi is in one village, the Gamma in another, the supermarket in another etc. And I need to throw in the garden centre somewhere in the midst of all that!!
Oh, and the vets for Finka. She's been 'called up' for a jab... which means both cats make the journey together to prevent any fighting upon their return home. Works a treat to take them both together in the same basket, and now we have Dreamies as their reward, it ought to be a doddle!????
I am almost done with the preparation of 700 cards for work. Almost. Not quite there but really don't want to even do one today!! I have had a belly full now, so am going to design another set to break the monotony of it all. By the time I want to get into making ours I think they will be so far removed from these ones as I can design! Though now I have got my paper the itch to begin is getting stronger. Just waiting for the right moment, and this heatwave is not it! Still got to do the wallpaper stripping this week, Jackie - sorry! Not got round to it as yet and that wall is definitely Saturdays job, no excuses please!
Sue xx

Friday, 23 September 2011

A little sad

Last night was choir practice and it went quite well despite our dwindling numbers. I see no possibility of our continuing after 2nd October, however, since two more members have decided to move on. Sometimes we just can sing something we know and like so well that you just wish we could have more people join us immediately to save us from disbanding! But I think it is too late now, and there will be a stop set on 6th October sadly.

The weather here yesterday was beautiful! Such a contrast to the day before. I have duel wardrobes right now - is it these trousers or those ones today? Shall I take a jumper with me or not?....

choices, choices....
Sue xx

Monday, 19 September 2011

Christmas in lights!!

I spent the whole day sticking and drawing lines on cards for our mammoth card making session at work today! It was so relaxing, and peaceful, but then when I am busy doing something like this, I can totally lose myself in it and the time simply flies by. So we sat there, together, me and one of our ladies. First I cut all the cardstock in half, then I drew black squiggly lines at the top of it and she added the tiny balloons after that which I had also punched out of lovely sparkly coloured paper. Tomorrow I am going to stamp each and every one; we have to produce 350!! Actually it was the fact that the design we were working with last week was just too difficult for our clients to cope with and was taking too long to produce sufficient numbers per day that persuaded me we needed to re-think our plan. I was inspired by something I had seen elsewhere but it was the small balloon punch that decided it for me in the end. I envisage a lot of balloon punching this week!!! Several other people commented that they liked the design so I am thinking I will use it for my own cards later on as well! One of my colleagues put forward a suggestion that I run a workshop for all my colleagues to make Christmas cards one evening in November if the interest is there; I said it was fine, so let's wait and see. It might be fun actually. I need to have a go once my inks arrive...did I mention that the poster I wanted never ever arrived? I was so disappointed with the airmail service, but when I told the company I had not received the poster they did return my money which I thought was pretty decent of them. But I would have preferred getting my lovely lady!! For a time I kept hoping she would magically appear in the post but sadly that has not happened. Maybe she was not meant to come and live with me after all...
Sue xx

Sunday, 18 September 2011

What a night!!!

Yesterday we put up the sensor light by the shed so that Tim can see what he is doing when he goes to work early doors. Whilst we were busy our neighbour told us that he was aware that people had been over into the gardens the other night looking for what they could steal so to be sure to lock up the bikes and shed etc. Anyway in the middle of the night last night I heard noises outside, woke up thinking 'this is it' but it was the other neighbours son who was trying to wake his brother up to let him inside!! He had not got his key so was tapping on the windows with a long pole . . . he didn't want to come in here to wait and was very apologetic about waking me up, but I felt sorry for him standing there in the rain. Still, nothing untoward happened so that was the good thing, only I couldn't fall back to sleep for hours! And now I am up and about but still feeling shattered. Tonight I really need to stay up longer so that once  I fall asleep I stay that way! I have another full week of work ahead, thank goodness, so no time to sit on my laurels and relax today.
By the way, the crumble was one of my best efforts!! The plums I roasted in  maple syrup were so yummy, and I added some secret ingredients to the crumble which made it scrumptious even though I say it myself! I also made proper custard which, my friends, is simply unbeatable comparing with the packet variety. So there are 4 egg whites sitting in the fridge begging to be turned into meringues today...
Sue xx

Saturday, 17 September 2011

Autumn film list

Tim and I love the movies!! And this autumn there are three on our 'see together' list:-

The Three Musketeers
Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy
Sherlock Holmes.

They fall into the category of being thrilling, interesting, costume, drama, exciting, well-known stories, not too violent, fantasy and most of all, full of good looking blokes ( the last is for me!!! ). We both love other films but not to see together - I am going to One Day with the ladies of course, and Phantom with other friends, so happy, happy me!! My daughter has already seen the Tinker Tailor film and raved about it. I remember the original naturally . . . but the cast this time is fantastic. Gary Oldman, Colin Firth to name but two, so it is going to be worth waiting for. NO idea when it will come out here?? But anyway, the first one is due in October so not long to wait now!

This morning I have been busy. I have roasted the plums and topped them with the crumble mix and the shortcrust pastry is in the fridge for the Chicken & Mushroom Pie I promised us this evening!! I was so tired last night I was in bed well before the watershed, but then woke up around 1am when Tim was going to work, and tossed and turned for several hours before finding sleep again, until about 7am. And since then I have occupied my time fully. Watching the clock move incredibly slowly towards 9.30am is killing me!! ;-)
Sue xx

Thursday, 15 September 2011

Thursday already?!

This week has slid along in a foggy haze for me as I have been unwell for most of it. Still not quite on top of things yet but the fuzziness in my head is starting to clear thank goodness!! I have low blood pressure which is fine most of the time, but when I am ill, it plummets even further and I have a much shorter tolerance for doing things during a day. Especially when working! The start is ok but towards the end of the morning I am desperately in need of my lunch, and then the afternoon starts ok for about an hour before the eventual slump into a more sleepy state around 3 o'clock. After that I am useless to man and beast!! So sleeping really long nights and doing as little to exert myself as possible has been the main aim this week.
The weather looks positive this morning anyway - there is a beautiful sky outside and the wind has dropped and it all looks amazingly autumnal and gorgeous this morning. In front of me lies the pile of Christmas cards I am working on, still trying my best not to spend anything on them and relying solely on using up the leftovers from my stash. It's quite a challenge but interesting to get the stamps out and try the combinations out until I am satisfied with the results. I like to make only one of every design!! I do need to get some refills for my inks however and some thin ribbon and some cardstock.....next month hopefully. Anything more would be just me 'desiring' stuff and it not being 'essential' . . .cutting back in every way I know!!!
Have a good day where ever you may be.
Sue xx

Sunday, 11 September 2011


and we are remembering 9/11. I am proud that Tim wants to watch and I am proud that he understands what happened and what we all fear could happen again in the future if the world does not become a peaceful planet. So pray for peace.
Sue xx

how the seasons change in the blink of an eye........

Today I'm making Mango Preserve/Chutney and Christmas Cards!! How absurd is that?!!! But when the spirit moves, as they say..................creativity is not something that answers to command in my case!
And actually it is proving very therapeutic today as I need to keep my mind off where it wants to wander, and so the daily quote " thoughts become things - so think the good ones" is especially appropriate for me today.

The cats were sat outside doing penance. I stripped the bed of all the linen etc, washed it, dried it, put it ready to go back on later when the mattresses have aired...............came back upstairs and found that 'someone' with four paws and a furry coat, had entertained other ideas about fresh linen to mine!! Not a happy mummy I can tell you!!! Genghis has pitifully meowed to be allowed back in and is making his way to under the computer to sit at my feet and plead his innocence. I do not know which is the guilty party, so he is on probation! I suppose he is now 14 years old and might be exhibiting some undesirable urges that come with age - or it was the other one who simply loves clean ruffled up sheets!!!! If ever a cat was born to be a princess..................

So Strictly commenced in all its razzmatazz last night. I got some pairings correct when we were guessing who'd partner who though I think it is a  shame the two Italians were not paired up. That would have been entertaining!!! I think Lulu and Brendan is either heaven or hell - and I see a whole lot of potential and determination already in Jason Donovan!!! He wants to win! I thought that Alex was not a great and natural dancer from the group dance- she looked more awkward than I had expected, so it will be a good series once again. The coming three weeks training will sort the men from the boys!! Bring it on!!!

It was lovely over on the blog Curlew Country today as it was all about Ludlow and the food fair there. It is one of my most favourite places to visit, and having lived close by for several years, I go back whenever I get the chance. I can see that I am going to have to get brave and take the car over the pond sometime, to visit Becci and Ric and other friends in the area, and do a lot of sight-seeing!!! ( That is the correct euphemism for undercover shopping isn't is?) Visit the blog and see what we are missing!!!
Sue xx

The weekend

Well, these are the two days before my last week of work, so I am enjoying them! Yesterday started off dullish but there was a hint of sun from about 10 o'clock onwards, and yes, it finally came out around 11.00. I sat in the garden to read and close my eyes occasionally which was most pleasant I can tell you!
Tim came home with some delicious pieces of gateau for us, and that was the treat later on. When he came in I was busy making Orange and Cinnamon Biscuits, and he was delighted! He'd apparently told the baker that HE was going to make then when he got home, but since I was already busy...........leave it to mum! What we did decide to do today, is make some Mango Chutney. His vote, I wanted to do tomato, but we can always do that another time. I love the smell of chutney making!!! And it is perfect timing to start making them now. But it is still early as I sit here, unable to sleep in this morning due to my efficient body clock! So I'm getting little quiet jobs done, the ones that don't wake the house and neighbours up too soon on a Sunday morning, but which are on my 'to do' list today!

Next week, when I am not busy every day, I have to start wallpaper stripping. It's time, because Jackie will be here in 3 weeks and I have to be ready. It is a good motivator! The trick is finding the balance between how long I anticipate it will take me, and when the right moment to start to give me the perfect amount of pressure and stress to complete it on time, is going to be. Plus if I start sooner, I can do more...
the counter to all this is that I hate doing it!!!! I know once I get started it will be fine, but there is a part of me that wants to strip the bedroom as well, only I hate the disruption and mess, and moving furniture etc. and then having to live for ever in a room that is bare!!! But we'll see how energetic and interested I am able to become, eh?.................

but for now I am going to start stamping some Christmas cards!!!
Sue xx

Friday, 9 September 2011

So happy!!

I'm so lucky to have been treated to a ticket for the cinema showing of the live performance of The Phantom of the Opera on 2 October. It is being shown here simultaneously from the Royal Albert Hall, and it is my absolute favourite musical of all time. I'm seeing it with a couple of friends which makes it even more special, but I know I will be totally transfixed to the screen the whole time so as not  to miss a single second. THANK YOU!!xxxxxxxxxxxxxx
I remember it first being performed because I was pregnant with Becci and I desperately wanted to go to London and see it. However, ill health in my pregnancy prevented it and my mother and sister went instead. I had to wait until I turned 40 before I got to see it for the first time, and then I went again with Becci for her 18th birthday treat. So, another six years further and I get to go again!!! It will be amazing to see it being performed as a 25th Anniversary special as there is bound to be surprise performers....if the Les Miserables one is anything to go on...........and that was spectacular. So, joy of joys, happy, happy me!
Sue xx

so tired now

......and looking forward to a lie-in at long last! I am not known for my ability to stay in bed long in the morning, as I have my energy surges at this time of the day, rapidly dwindling after noon until practically zero around 9.30 in the evening! I get so much done in the morning! But even I have to admit that working a full week has left me quite exhausted and with little interest left for anything more than essential activity.
I have not been sleeping properly either with incredible dreams happening, and early alarms reminding me that we have to adjust once again to more bakery hours....and I just don't seem able to nod back off again between 4 and 6am. So tomorrow I have promised myself that I will try to stay in bed until after 8am.....if I can. And the cats don't wake me wanting their breakfast........so I came home from work and did the hard housework chores this afternoon in order to not have to scramble to get them done in the morning. I did some shopping, I washed towels, cleaned bathroom and toilet and hoovered. Done! That's the downside to a full working week for me: I hate having to do all my housework in one go!! I tend to spread it out doing a little every day, as it seems more manageable and less odorous somehow. The same tasks have to be done, but I like to take them on serenely and without haste. So right now, I deserve half an hour on the settee with my eyes closed and nothing  to disturb me what so ever!!
Sue xx

Wednesday, 7 September 2011

Autumn chill

in the house, from the terrible stormy weather of the past couple of days, but it is way too soon to cave in and turn the heating up, isn't it?! Instead the cats cuddle up even closer to me on the settee and Finka has already started getting under the blanket that we use to catch all the cat hairs, and sleeps under it all night. Once the rads do go on, she will be thrilled to see their cat hammock re-appear as if by magic and she can warm her body up against it to her heart's content!!
And with cooler weather comes the search for temperature appropriate clothing, hidden under all the summer attire and in need of washing and ironing, trying on, deciding whether I still like it or not....mixing and matching to make as many different outfits from the tiny choice that I have in my wardrobe.......and wishing I was now those few extra kilos lighter!!!
The requests for Christmas Cards are coming in too!! One of my colleagues saw the ones I had made at work with the clients last week, and promptly asked if I would do some for her too. They are so simple, but I think that is the way I am going to leave them this year. Nothing fancy or over-done; a good stamped image and maybe a ribbon or a smidgeon of glitter or little gem..............I'm also going to be making some Thank you cards for someone who is getting married next week, so I have lots to occupy my time with once the coming week is over. Then my work starts to get more patchy and less regular and I have more time on my hands than I need. Though I was very happy to hear that another colleague is planning her holiday for February!! The winter months are so difficult for us folk who work for others when they are on leave or sick etc. Summer is hectic but the rest of the year is sporadic and school holidays are so welcome! But I have still got some days left, and I cannot wait until my friend Jackie is here in October. Just four more weeks!
Starting to feel more than a little sleepy right now, so having abandoned all hope of staying awake during the film on tv once I remembered I'd seen it before, I am going to lie in bed, dream awhile and hopefully drift off into a blissful faraway place...................until morning.
Sue xx

are you still there

or did you get washed away in the storm last night?!! What an awful lot of rain! More than we have had in simply ages, and the wind was pretty horrid as well. Tim won't have been happy on his bike in the small wee hours of this morning as he went to his placement! The offer of the rain mac I left at the top of the stairs for him was ignored...............rats, drowning; probably something like that when he arrived at the bakery!
Sue xx

Sunday, 4 September 2011

How to choose a book

with me the title has a lot to do with it!

This is on my wish list currently: "WHEN GOD WAS A RABBIT." You'd know I'd want to read this!!!

Others on the list are:-
'The Heart of a Woman' by Maya Angelou
'The Hare with Amber Eyes' by Edmund de Waal
"The warmth of the Heart prevents the body from rusting' byMarie de Hennezel

What I'm reading now is 'One Day' and waiting to see the film next month with my girlfriends!
Sue xx

just a suggestion........

but if you want to speak to me then phone earlier in the day!!!! This is a household that gets up early and goes to bed early, and if that phone rings past 9.30pm then there is little chance it will be answered! Especially over the weekend as Tim gets up at one in the morning to go to work - so come Saturday evening, he goes to bed early to catch up on the hours he missed; me too!!! And don't forget the one hour time difference - we are ahead one hour from the UK!!!
Me, I hardly ever make calls on our house phone and am seriously thinking of stopping with it. We don't need it really, and if I can cut our costs by doing without, then so much the better. Having the social networks etc makes it so much easier to communicate without worrying about how much it is going to cost people. Especially when you are in different countries! So, happy to skype, happy to email, but phone at another time in the day please!!!
Sue xx

Weekend blogging

Usually takes places first thing in the morning before I venture downstairs and forage in the fridge for my breakfast. I didn't sleep too well last night so although I call this a reasonable hour, I've been awake for ages longer!
Yesterday it was blistering hot and made a wonderful change to the weather we've had much of the summer. September could be awesome...........we managed to get some gardening done, front and back, some jobs that were definitely long overdue finally got sorted ( thanks ) and then the kids cooked dinner for  Ann and I which was delicious. Doubly so when someone else does all the hard work! I contributed a Lemon Meringue Pie at Tim's request, but since we have not made one in months possibly years, it was a delight. Will make it again for sure. Today we have got another guest for dinner, so I am in charge of our Italian menu. First up I am going to bake a Focaccia Bread - been wanting to try one for ages and today seems perfect. That and my favourite Pasta Puttanesca followed by Stuffed Nectarines and Mascarpone Cream - yummy!! But first there are jobs to be done..............aren't there always??? It rained during the night too, so I'm not expecting such a lovely day as yesterday which is probably just as well to keep me busy before a whole working week ahead!!
Sue xx