Saturday, March 31, 2007

The Queen Speaks

OK, so to kill two birds with one stone - here's my kitcheck for re-enactment next weekend, with a short narrative........

David, you don't have to walk 500 miles to hear a British accent - here it is.....

[and before the Aginoths jump all over me, it's a cloak, not a cape - slip of the tongue]
To those who know me - is that really what I sound like?? [wrinkles nose] - bobkat says yes, it is my serious voice.........

Update: My handmade bread is now proving in the airing cupboard....hope it works......

woo hoo!! The bread worked! (If a little overdone, but that's the oven)....who needs breadmakers!?! :-)


Friday, March 30, 2007


Many women are afraid of their first mammogram, but there is no need to worry. By taking a few minutes each day for a week preceding the exam and doing the following exercises, you will be totally prepared for the test and best of all, you can do these simple exercises right in and around your home.
Open your refrigerator door and insert one breast in door. Shut the door as hard as possible and lean on the door for good measure. Hold that position for five seconds. Repeat again in case the first time wasn't effective enough.
Visit your garage at 3AM when the temperature of the cement floor is just perfect. Take off all your clothes and lie comfortably on the floor with one breast wedged under the rear tire of the car. Ask a friend to slowly back the car up until your breast is sufficiently flattened and chilled. Turn over and repeat with the other breast.
Freeze two metal bookends overnight. Strip to the waist. Invite a stranger into the room. Press the bookends against one of your breasts. Smash the bookends together as hard as you can. Set up an appointment with the stranger to meet next year and do it again.

A Friend Is Like A Good Bra...
Hard to Find
Always Lifts You Up
Never Lets You Down
or Leaves You Hanging
And Is Always Close To Your Heart!!!

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

These Damned Feet of Clay!!

This ol' Queen has feet of clay after all. My elation and, truth to say, pleasure in managing to run short distances this weekend has been short-lived.
There does indeed appear to still be something wrong with my back. The short bursts of jogging I did over the weekend (both Saturday and Sunday) have resulted in much back pain. The pain is centred on the base of my spine (injured when I fell on the skiing trip last year) and when particularly bad it spreads across the pelvis and up the spine.
I am now on painkillers and have been off work for a couple of days, waiting for the aggravation to recede.
It's getting better now, but I won't be running the Race for Life at this rate - my back is just too fragile.
So it's back to walking.....
I feel such a cripple, but my back has taken quite a beating over the last 40 years, often landing me in hospital, from road accidents to slips and falls. They say 'you only have one back' - how true that is!

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Song for Sunday

This week's choice of song is an international favourite folksy number, indelibly linked to the film featured in the post below.......

"Craig and Charlie Reid never expected a hit single. They certainly never thought they'd see the same song climb the pop charts twice. But the Proclaimers, a Scottish rock band fronted by a pair of spectacled, nerdy-looking brothers, has based its fame on the success of a single song.

Many people don't even know the name. But start singing the words to "I'm Gonna Be" and a lot of folks will smile and join in the refrain: "Oh, I would walk 500 miles and I would walk 500 more, Just to be the man who walked 1,000 miles to fall down at your door."
Sound familiar? The irreverent love song, appropriately subtitled "500 Miles," hit the charts after the release of their 1988 album, Sunshine on Leith. Then, after a successful world tour, the furor died down and the Proclaimers disappeared from view. They shot back into the limelights in 1993, not because of a new recording, but because their five-year-old hit rocketed back onto the charts after appearing in the movie Benny and Joon."

This version was released this year for Comic Relief with comedians Peter Kaye and Matt Lucas. The Brits reading this should recognise most of the audience!

I love this song, and am one of those people in the article quoted above, who sing along after the first line.....


Sunday Afternoon at the Movies

I missed my regular slot of Saturday Night at the Movies, but this is definitely an afternoon film anyway.

Anyone been wondering why I haven't been featuring JD? Well, today is the day. Creating possibly one of Johnny's most popular creations, Sam, this film pays loving homage to his favourite silent screen actor, Buster Keaton. With the dancing bread rolls, and Sam swinging from a bosun's chair, it can only be the magical wonderful and gorgeous 'Benny and Joon' (1993). Is there ANYONE who hasn't seen this masterpiece illustration of life with psychological disorders, in this case dyslexia and schitzophrenia?

The bones from imdb:
In a small town, an auto mechanic named Benny is devoted to taking care of his mentally ill sister, Joon, who can barely function alone in the real world despite being a talented artist. This relatively stable situation is shaken up when Benny is obliged in a poker game to welcome another player's relative, Sam, to his home for a few days. When Sam arrives, he quickly makes an impression with his quietly eccentric ways which emulate the antics of the great silent movie comedian, Buster Keaton. Without Benny's full knowledge, Sam and Joon finds themselves drawn to each other to the fullest degree. However when Benny finds out, it creates a rift in the siblings as they struggle to accept their relationship is profoundly changing with the presence of this odd newcomer.
But this in no way describes the impact of this film. Every moment, from Sam travelling on the train, to him struggling to write his name, to the painting lesson, to Joon defending herself, to Sam teaching her to make toasted cheese sandwiches, is a moment of charm and wonder. This film is a constant delight and opened eyes to what Johnny could do, acting-wise, supported strongly with Mary Stuart Masterson and Aiden Quinn. This is quite possibly right up there in my top ten movies of all time.
Can Sam come and stay at my house?

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Chariots of Fire - NOT!

Today I ran!
Well, I shuffled.....
nope, I ran!
I decided to start my training for Race for Life by walking to the store (about a mile away) and doing some light grocery shopping.

The way to the store is a little footpath lined with bushes and trees, and while I was walking I pondered whether I could still run (I have not run since I had problems with my back in my twenties).

I started with a little gentle shuffle (reminiscent of a marathon runner in the last stretch!), trying to remember what to do with two legs and two arms, my rucksack banging against my back. Then I stopped and walked for a bit. I didn't keel over, so I jogged some more - about a hundreds yards. And stopped to walk again. I did this down the path until I saw the end of the path and ran to the end. By this time I was remembering how to run (isn't it odd how you forget how to run as you get older?) and got some speed up.
Acknowledging my age and physical condition, I decided to be restrained, be content with shuffling/jogging/running 1/4 mile and live to run another day.....


Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Blog Fodder #14

This week is yet another example of a question that has so many answers. We'd like to thank Mar over at Maremagnum for submitting this topic.

Give an example of a meal that makes you happy.

There's only one answer to this - my regular girly pizza nights with Bob-Kat.

We go to Pizza Hut and I always have my favourite...garlic bread with cheese, vegetarian supreme on pan and chocolate cake to follow........
Most important thing about this meal isn't the food though, it's the time spent with my best girl-friend, my soul-sister, Bob-Kat.
Utenzi made me smile when he said on one of my earlier posts "I was looking at your sidebar and found to my surprise that Bob-Kat used to be your boss. I'd somehow not noticed that before."
Bob-Kat was indeed my line manager in my previous job, and is responsible for giving me the confidence in my own abilities to apply for promotion and therein enabled me to get to where I am now.
She's having a hard time at the moment, so it'd be nice if people would take a little trip over to her blog and say hi.

When we go for our nights out, we have such fun. Real Life gets put on the backburner and we spend the evening putting the world to rights and laughing - oh we laugh so much, it's very good for us.

So, that's the meal that makes me happy..........dinner with Bob-Kat.


Monday, March 19, 2007

Looky, Looky!!

Look what I got!

Ain't it just a thing of beauty?

11" bollock_dagger.......blunt of course!

No words necessary.........


Sunday, March 18, 2007

A Song for Sunday

A Song for Sunday is a chance for me to find my favourite songs and post them on my blog.

This week I am inspired by a surprise delivery today. Today is Mother's Day in the UK and definitely not my favourite day. I was woken from a midday nap by MB who said 'you got flowers!'.

Aren't they pretty?

These are from Sleepypete (who can be found in my blogroll) who sends me flowers every year. He is not my biological son, in fact he is only 11 years younger than me, but he knows how difficult this time is and remembers me along with his proper mum.

And my message back to Pete is; Thank you, 'son', I love you and whatever happens - I'll be there for you........

I love this video, with the guys from Friends being silly and should be fun!


Mother's Day in the UK

Why are you crying, a young boy asked his Mum?
"Because I'm a woman," she told him.
"I don't understand," he said.
His Mum just hugged him and said, "And you never will, but that's O.K.".......
Later the little boy asked his father, "Why does Mum seem to cry for no reason?".
"All women cry for no reason," was all his Dad could say......
The little boy grew up and became a man, still wondering why women cry.
Finally he put in a call to God and when God got back to him, he asked "God, why do women cry so easily?" GOD answered......
"When I made woman, I decided she had to be special.
I made her shoulders strong enough to carry the weight of the world, yet, made her arms gentle enough to give comfort...
I gave her the inner strength to endure childbirth and the rejection that many times will come even from her own children.
I gave her a hardness that allows her to keep going and take care of her family and friends, even when everyone else gives up, through sickness and fatigue without complaining....
I gave her the sensitivity to love her children under any and all circumstances. Even when her child has hurt her badly....
She has the very special power to make a child's boo-boo feel better and to quell a teenager's anxieties and fears....
I gave her strength to care for her husband, despite faults and I fashioned her from his rib to protect his heart....
I gave her wisdom to know that a good husband never hurts his wife, but sometimes tests her strengths and her resolve to stand beside him unfalteringly....
For all of this hard work, I also gave her a tear to shed. It is hers to use whenever needed and it is her only weakness....
When you see her cry, tell her how much you love her, and all she does for everyone, and even though she may still cry, you will have made her heart feel good.
Happy Mother's Day to all those wonderful women..........

Saturday, March 17, 2007

Saturday Night at the Movies

Saturday Night at the Movies is my opportunity to chat about my favourite films. Fun, serious, noisy, violent, good or terrible - my tastes are most eclectic.

As it's Mother's Day in the UK tomorrow, this is my choice for a suitable 'Mum' film.

'Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans'

The magical Richard Dreyfuss puts in a stunning performance as Glenn Holland, a musician and composer who takes a teaching job to pay the rent while, in his 'spare time', he strives to achieve his true goal - compose one memorable piece of music to leave his mark on the world. As the years unfold the joy of sharing his contagious passion for music with his students becomes his new definition of success.

Mr Holland's love of music also defines his feelings for his profoundly deaf son as the boy grows to manhood.

This film is an emotional minefield. Pack plenty of hankies, and don't watch it with people who you don't want to see you cry - because you WILL cry.

This film is incredible, and builds steadily to a breath-taking climax. Be prepared.


Saturday with the Girls....

I'm here, babysitting for the Aginoths while they go to the medieval markets. A Jr is at a friends house, and I have LMB and LMD.
LMD screamed the place down when she realised I was to be her primary carer for the day. Poor old mum having to go out listening to her baby scream.....

Of course the screaming only lasted about five minutes - but it was enough to make Mrs A feel awful.

We watched a little TV while the girls got used to me being here. Then we did some colouring and had story time - they enjoyed the story of the magic porridge pot.

We had play outside (a BIG thankyou to the man who invented garden trampolines!) These girls will bounce for hours....
Some dolly play (a delightfully instinctive 'girl' thing) with their 'babies' and prams - well, it lasted until LMB wanted LMD's dolly buggy and threw a major screamer. She was horrified when I walked away......but she'll learn :-)

Lunch went down well - no child in my experience has ever turned down Alphabetti Sketti :-)

It's turned cold outside, so we are indoors with the radio on. The girls playing and fighting in the toy room. OK, playfighting turned into fighting, so they are now in the front room with me playing with the box of trains.

A Jr is home from his friend's house bravely sporting a plaster on one finger [grin], so I treated them all to a DVD of his choice......apparently his friends were throwing lego (shock horror). It was so amazing, I could hear him and his friend from half way up the street! :-)

I confess to a little bit of clearing up, putting the dishwasher on etc etc.......[hangs head in shame]


Tuesday, March 13, 2007

I hate this week.....

It's the week on the run-up to Mother's Day. My least favourite time of the year.

This one day a year that reminds me, without fail every year, that I am not, nor ever will be a Mother/mum/mummy..or even a mom or a mommy.....

I have mentioned this before, and you have all been so unstintingly supportive, sympathetic and encouraging.

But that doesn't make this particular personal demon go away, no matter how much bloglove is shared around - and every year it comes back, as raw and unforgiving as ever.

by the by, I think I should make an appointment with my doctor; constant headaches, stomach aches, complete weariness, short temper, weepy, insomnia and dermatitis - all sounds like stress to me. I put it down to cold turkey - nicotene and prozac in one fell swoop.
Update: OK, been to see sympathetic (but not patronising) female locum (female GP was a three week wait!). I am 'severely depressed' (it must be right - I did a questionnaire!!), withdrawal and have unrelated dermatitis. The pains in my knees are the result of the weight I have put on since giving up smoking. She actually made the connection between surgery, no children and depression - so rarely do doctors dare verbalise that connection!
I have a prescription for steroidal cream for the dermatitis.
[holds up hands] And I will finally fill my 4 month old prescription for prozac.
Oh, and she wishes me the best of luck for the re-enactment season :-)


Monday, March 12, 2007

Blog Fodder #13

The Fodder question #13 is brought to us by none other than the talented writer/photographer and my blogbuddy, Carmi.
Where do you go to be alone?
I feel a fraud answering this one. I think this blog fodder question is definitely aimed at parents. I can have time alone any time I want.
But if it's desperately needed, I hide upstairs with a book........

Doncha just hate me now?? :-)

Sunday, March 11, 2007

A Song for Sunday

A Song for Sunday is a chance for me to find my favourite songs and post them on my blog.

When I was a young teen I went to Summer School. It was a Quaker Summer School run at the country's oldest and most famous Quaker boarding school,
Friends School Saffron Walden.
I loved my time there so much that I actually asked my mum if I could go to proper school there. The answer was no, surprisingly!

Like Quaker Camp, previously mentioned on this blog, Summer School was a fantastic chance to holiday with people the same age and with the same interests. I even had a boyfriend, Andreas, and I had girlfriends to chatter and giggle with.

At the end of the fortnight, there was a disco and every year a Disco King and Queen were crowned.

I had always loved dancing. As a child I had dressed up and danced for my parents, and as a teen I had studied all the latest moves from
Pan's People to make sure I was the coolest Disco Queen. At regular school discos I was far too nervous to dance in front of my peers, but I did love dancing.

I won! Not only did I win, but the school heart throb was crowned King. So I got to dance with the hottest boy in Summer this......

Just for one night - I was a Queen.....a Dancing Queen.....

ps - awwwwwww - wasn't Benny just the CUTEST???


Saturday, March 10, 2007

Saturday Night at the Movies

Saturday Night at the Movies is my opportunity to chat about my favourite films. Fun, serious, noisy, violent, good or terrible - my tastes are most eclectic.

This week is my chance to simper over the current (in my opinion) Queen of cinema.......Drew. She's done....well.....everything.....

Josie Geller is a struggling young copywriter who goes back to school undercover to do a story. Her school memories are horrific, her nickname was Josie Grossie - but with age and experience, she finds she is now popular.......especially with teacher!

This is the one film absolutely guaranteed to make me cry at the beginning.....and again at the end. Those electric five minutes being ticked off on the baseball field clock, with Josie waiting with her hands twisting......will he, won't he.....? ah, time to fish out a tissue.

This film has the added attraction of the divine Michael Vartan, the sublime David Arquette and the adorable Leelee Sobieski.

Break out the beer and popcorn, send out hubby and call the girls over......


My name is CQ and I own a Dell

I have been a bit quiet this week. There is a good reason for this. I have suffered Dellitus.
Dell has a terrible reputation, but MB organised the purchasing of my laptop, so I didn't worry too much about it. My laptop is lovely, and I love it.
Then I suffered the common ailment of Dell users, my drive packed up. I have a combi drive which plays (or should play) both CDs and DVDs.
Surprise, surprise, I played a DVD the other week and then, when I went to use the CD drive it didn't work. This is a highly advertised issue with Dell users. One of the lasers has failed in the drive.
Two big problems with this.
One was that the CD I wanted to use was my new Security Suite - protection is *so* important! Of course, as per the instructions I had removed the old outdated protection, so my laptop was totally vulnerable.
Secondly, my Dell cover lasted 90 days (3 months) and the drive failed at four months......a bit suspicious how often that happens reading the forums.
MB has spent all week poring over my laptop and the full size computer trying to fix the problem and has offered to pay for the new drive my laptop needs.
In the meantime he has scanned for problems and installed some basic protection so I can surf the net again.
So I'm back!
And to entertain my readers - the Honda advert that blew us away....we didn't buy a Honda, but we were all very impressed and still speak of this commercial in hushed tones of awe....


Thursday, March 08, 2007

Would you Work for this Company?

I can only assume this is field work to improve the service they deliver...

29 have been accused of spouse abuse

7 have been arrested for fraud

9 have been accused of writing bad cheques

17 have directly or indirectly bankrupted at least 2 businesses

3 have done time for assault

71 cannot get a credit card due to bad credit

14 have been arrested on drug-related charges

8 have been arrested for shoplifting

21 are currently defendants in lawsuits

84 have been arrested for drink driving in the last year

Which organisation is this?

It's the 635 members of the House of Commons, the same group that cranks out hundreds of new laws each year designed to keep the rest of us in line.

God help us all.......


Sunday, March 04, 2007

A Song for Sunday

A Song for Sunday is a chance for me to find my favourite songs and post them on my blog.

Songs and music, possibly more than anything else, sculpt the people we grow to be. I grew up in an almost wholly classical music environment until my dad gave me a radio and a set of headphones when I was about 13 so I could listen to music in my room. He was also the first person to give me a 'pop' album - to my mother's horror - and persuaded my mother to let me have a record player in my bedroom.
This resulted in my taste veering all the way across the spectrum from Chopin to AC/DC, with stops at Cliff Richard (that first album), Elvis and Abba.

When I visit my mother and dad now, it is still a wholly classical environment. Without my own room and stuff I find I am straining at the invisible leash by the end of the day. When I am there I stay in a local B&B and every evening I stroll back along the beach. I plug in my CD player and crank the volume waaaaay up...........

SO cleansing.......


Saturday, March 03, 2007

Saturday Night at the Movies

Ooh, another Saturday night, another favourite movie.
Saturday Night at the Movies is my opportunity to chat about my favourite films. Fun, serious, noisy, violent, good or terrible - my tastes are most eclectic.

This is a film from this man.......

Yep, of course you all recognise Adam Sandler, one of the most prolific young film-makers today. I love most of his films; Wedding Singer, Waterboy, The Longest Yard, Spanglish and today's spotlighted film.

I love this film, because it is genuinely funny albeit terribly juvenile! I liked the Wedding Singer with the magical pairing of Sandler and Barrymore, but this film just has the edge. Admittedly, a rein should be put on Rob Schneider, but he is funny - if outrageous. Add to Sandler's natural off-beat humour the beautiful and incredibly funny Drew Barrymore (I adore this woman!!) and this was a winner of a film.

Love means never having to say, "Who the hell are you?" Marine biologist Henry Roth (Adam Sandler) finds the perfect woman, Lucy Whitmore (Drew Barrymore) and falls head over heels for her. But when he sees her the following day, she hasn’t a clue as to who he is. Lucy suffers from a rare brain disorder that wipes her memory clean every night. Now, with the help of his friend Ula (Rob Schneider), he has to concoct new and increasingly clever ways to meet her and get her to fall for him every single day. 50 First Dates reunites the successful team of Sandler and Barrymore from The Wedding Singer. (DVD description)

The secret to this film? The one scene that reduces me to floods of tears and gales of laughter simultaneously - have you ever laughed and cried at the same time? You eventually run out of oxygen and it hurts!! But it's a good hurt, a real good hurt. This is the music this painful (literally!) scene is set to. I love this - it's the original video of the song. Put it on, turn up the volume and let rip!!


Welcome Back

Bloggers always return to the fold!

I notice from some bloghopping that Mommy Ba is back online after a bit of a hard time.

And woohoo!! The Wonderful Wendy Wings, our very own Emmy reporter, is back with her Casting Call, so go on over and have a virtual cookie and say hi.

Go on - the cookies are delicious!!