Sunday, December 31, 2006

Happy New Year

Happy New Year to all my blogbuddies, near and far.

I am having a few personal issues at the moment, so excuse me if I don't stop and chat.

Help yourself to a glass of pink champagne...

and please accept my best wishes for a Happy and Healthy 2007!

Friday, December 29, 2006

Ooh - Pressies!!

Click to embiggen pictures...

What an excellent par-tay - thanks to the Aginoths.....and LMD even spent some quality time with me, after an initial scream of horror on my arrival.....

There were lots of presents.....

Look at this stash of gifts - almost as big as Aginoth Jnr and LMB combined.........

I got CDs: Pride and Prejudice Soundtrack, Happy Feet Soundtrack, A little classical music, A little more classical music

and some DVDs: March of the Penguins, Cocoon double bill (LOVE Brian Dennehy!), The Man in the White Suit, Passport to Pimlico, The Lavender Hill Mob (I have always been a sucker for Ealing Comedies and they have just been re-released on DVD.)

and I got books: Seven Ancient Wonders (great adventure books by Reilly) and Bodies We've Buried (I have always been interested in forensics).


Aginoth: I got books - look!! mmmm - books.........!
Sleepypete: woo hoo! Buck Rogers!

Once the pressies were doled out and oohed over, it was time to eat and put a film on for the children, Cars was the DVD of choice.......
The food was a cold buffet of meats, cheeses and bread rolls - simple but eminently satisfying - followed by a table of nibbles (crisps (chips) and chocolate etc) for general munching.


Bionicdwarf kindly manned the chocolate table for us...and even managed a Jawaesque pose......

The girls were bathed, the children shuffled off to bed and it was grown up what do grown up Crazies watch??


X-Men 3 followed by


Between films from the left: Cyberkitten modestly protecting his identity, Sleepypete and Aginoth looking at computer games.....or was Aginoth leaving a comment on my blog!?!

The Incredibles

We certainly live racy lives, huh? :-)

It was a wonderful night; thank you, Aginoth and Mrs Aginoth.........and thank you to all my Crazies for all the excellent gifts!! :-)


Thursday, December 28, 2006

Crazie Christmas

The Crazies are all congregating at the Aginoths' today, to celebrate the Crazie Christmas - a feast of food, drink, presents, films, music, blogging, shouting, arguing and laughing.........

Photos to follow!!

The 'Pressie Heap' has been distributed and duly opened and oohed and aahed over..... I got lots of excellent music, films and books.
I'm looking forward to watching all the films, and reading my books.
I am now being harrassed because Aginoth has seen me blogging - he's a miserable sod, but throws a decent party....

OK, now the children are in bed - it's time for adult entertainment..........

Aginoth: Pardon??


Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Temper Temper

Yesterday I lost my temper good and proper for the first time in ages.

The existence in my life of MB, Crazies and Bobkat have all conspired to damp down my extremely volatile temper, but yesterday it blew.

I was cooking dinner - roast pork, roast potatoes, sprouts and red cabbage made with apple and red wine. Sounds good, huh? Needless to say, that's NOT what we ate........

I cooked the pork for the requisite time and then left it to stand, as recommended. All the rest of the food was ready, so I started to carve the pork for MB. Now, bear in mind I do not eat meat so I follow cooking instructions to the letter!! I found a huge concentration of fat on the joint and cut it away, only to find the meat wasn't cooked in the middle - I mean, not at all!

With everything ready, cooking the joint for at least another half hour would ruin the rest of the meal.

I freaked. I screamed, I yelled, I banged dishes, I cursed.....and I wept - bucketsful of tears. I only just stopped short of throwing myself on the floor and drumming my heels on the linoleum!
MB tried to help and even offered to take over - at which point I yelled at him. He retired with a few curses of his own and I wept alone in the kitchen after putting the joint back in the oven.

Then I thought for a moment and off I went on a repair mission......

I ditched the rapidly soggening roast potatoes and quickly peeled and boiled another batch of taters. I fried off some onion and added the already cooked sprouts, chopped up. I put the cooling red cabbage mix into a saucepan and kept it on a gentle heat. Then I mashed the newly boiled potato.

Dinner was about an hour later than originally planned and it was roast pork, mashed potato, sprout and onion stirfry with red cabbage.

The irony - not only did I forget to cook something for myself in the first instance, I forget the second time around too!! So he got 'Twice Roast Pork' and I just got vegetables........

(no threat to Jamie_Oliver just yet!)

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Purple Dragons and Bling!

Most unusual Christmas present this year was from Bobkat.......

I got a purple dragon - isn't he cute??

and even some jewellery for my mobile phone - my phone has bling!! tee hee


Monday, December 25, 2006

Merry Christmas, Blogdom!

Merry Christmas to one and all!!

Sunday, December 24, 2006

Strength in Numbers - a Poem

I tried to find a poem
To steal a thought or two,
But nothing spoke to me
That I wanted to say to you.

I tried to find a song
Or a video to show
How I feel this Christmas Eve
But nothing helped the flow.

Strength in numbers!
The cry has gone out.
The bloggers are gathering
And adding their clout.

Miracles happen,
We know that they do
Lord, or chosen deity,
Bring a miracle to her too.

Make a Christmas Wish - visit Minerva and add your strength.

And on this Christmas Eve - check out the Santa Livecam! :-)

Actually, because it's now Christmas Eve night, Santa is busy and not on the livecam now - but the rest of the website is cool..........


Saturday, December 23, 2006

My Christmas Wish

(Chinese sign for wisdom)

I would like you all to meet a blogbuddy of mine.
We haven't been in touch lately because she was well and getting on with her life.

Minerva has cancer. Yep, that horrible word. Isn't it nasty? Last time we spoke it was 'gone', in remission and Minerva was looking forward to life with her daughters.

It's back........

Minerva is a wonderful strong young woman. She doesn't deserve this. Neither do her daughters.

Time to reach out, my friends. Strength in numbers. This is cruddy news to get at Christmas. Time to walk by the side of people who need us. Go over and send her some warmth and love at this Christmastide.

Her email to me included a very wise phrase:

This is the scariest thing I have ever had to face and hands by my side, words in my ear, comments in my eyes, all help me to cope...

My Christmas Wish is for all those around the world sick or in pain this Christmas to find comfort, strength and hope.


Friday, December 22, 2006

This Christmas Weekend

With the onset of Christmas this weekend, we would be amiss not to think of all those with friends and family overseas, specifically our servicemen, who cannot come home to their loved ones for the season.

To all our Servicemen overseas, wherever they are, we haven't forgotten you this Christmas.

And just to stop this becoming maudlin, have a look at this wonderful film. Most of my English readers have probably seen it, but it may be new to my other blogbuddies.

This was made by a British Army unit in Basra during a quiet period in their duties last year.
From the BBC:
They e-mailed it to Army friends in London, but the MoD server crashed because so many tried to download it.
Among those to praise their efforts has been Defence Secretary John Reid.
Mr Reid paid tribute to the Royal Dragoon Guards when opening the
Queen's Speech debate on defence in the Commons.
"Her Majesty's armed forces never cease to amaze me. To be able to carry out such acts of determination, sacrifice and heroism in so many spheres of the world and, at the same time, to be recording hit videos is a measure of the quality of the British Armed Forces," he said.

So, thank you to Staff Sergeant Roger Parr ('singer'), Sergeant Andy Stokoe (the brains in the towel) and Captain Mungo Ker (behind the camera) of the Royal Dragoon Guards - for creating something permanent to highlight the reality of Our Boys overseas.

You want more? Well, spurred on by the above effort, the British Navy made their own extremely ambitious and touching video - watch out for the (brief) Waynes World bit in the helicopter.

I have worked with the Services for years, and the indomitable spirit still get me right here [thumps heart]


Thursday, December 21, 2006

Winter Wonderland

Sent to my by my friend Huw at work......

No snow here yet - but one is always hopeful (especially now I don't have to go to work!)

and - stolen from Aginoth (who is 'twisted', but we all knew that anyway!)......

How evil are you?

[checks comments] - wow, for a 'Good' person I have a lot of 'Twisted' friends :-)


Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Christmas Carols for the Disturbed


* 1. Schizophrenia --- Do You Hear What I Hear?

* 2. Multiple Personality Disorder --- We Three Kings Disoriented Are

* 3. Dementia --- I Think I'll be Home for Christmas

* 4. Narcissistic --- Hark the Herald Angels Sing About Me

* 5. Manic --- Deck the Halls and Walls and House and Lawn and Streets and Stores and Office and Town and Cars and Buses and Trucks and Trees and.....

* 6. Paranoid --- Santa Claus is Coming to Town to Get Me

* 7. Borderline Personality Disorder --- Thoughts of Roasting on an Open Fire

* 8. Personality Disorder --- You Better Watch Out, I'm Gonna Cry, I'm Gonna Pout, Maybe I'll Tell You Why

* 9. Attention Deficit Disorder --- Silent night, Holy oooh look at the froggy - can I have a chocolate, why is France so far away?

* 10. Obsessive Compulsive Disorder --Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells


Monday, December 18, 2006


You'll need the following:

1 cup butter
2 cups sugar
6 large eggs
2 teaspoons baking powder
3 cups flour, sifted
1/2 t. salt
1 cup bourbon
1 pound pecans, chopped
3 cups white raisins (or use candied fruit)
1 t. nutmeg
~ a very large bottle of bourbon whiskey ~

First, sample the whiskey to check for quality.
Assemble all of the ingredients.
Check the whiskey again.
To be sure it is of the highest quality, pour one level cup and drink.
Repeat this step.
Turn on the electric mixer and beat one cup of butter in a large fluffy bowl.
Add one teaspoon of sugar and cream until beat.
Make sure the whiskey is still okay... try another cup.
Turn off the mixer.
Beat six leggs and add to the bowl, then chunk in the cup of dried flut.
Mix on the tuner.
Throw in two quarts of flour.
Gradually pour in the cow.
Add 2 dried anything.
If the fried druit gets struck in the beaters, pry it loose with a drewscriver.
Sample the whiskey and check it again for tonsistency.
Next, sift two cups of salt. Or something. Who cares???
Now sift the nutmeg and strain your nuts.
Add one table.
And the spoon.
Of whiskee.
Or something.
Whatever you find left.
Grease the oven.
Turn the crake pan to 350 degrees.
Don't forget to beat off the turner.
Pour the oven into the batter.
Throw the bowl out the window.
Lick the batter off the floor.
Bake 300 minutes at 50 degrees.
Finish the blobble of whishy and flow to bed.

Sunday, December 17, 2006

Blog Fodder #3

bf kittens_08

Before I start, my apologies for being SO late with this week's Blog Fodder!! As you saw, I have had some adult health issues to combat in the meantime!

Without further ado, this week’s topic was submitted by Judy, over at
Welcome to my World of Dreams.
Do you have any memories of a childhood illness?

We were exceptionally healthy as children, other than accidents or mishaps - partly due to the pint of full milk we had to drink every day. Very few illnesses or broken bones in our childhood. We were also expected to be on our deathbeds before our mother would let us stay at home sick.

There was german measles when I was very small, but I don't remember it - but apparently all four children were bunked up in one room!

I got chronic tonsillitis as a teenager, which was when I discovered my allergy to penicillin! I couldn't talk or barely breathe, but I managed to throw up convulsively when dosed with penicillin. In fact, I only made it as far as the window, not even to the bathroom. So, no more penicillin for me! I had a roaring fever and hallucinated and everything. I was really sick according to my mother - and I don't remember a thing about it!!

I know chicken pox is a prevalent virus but I never caught it. I have been around cases all my life, particularly being in childcare, but I have never contracted it. I found out about five years ago I am probably a carrier - as there is no way I could have been exposed so much and not caught it. Being a carrier of the virus, I'll be immune.... is this good or bad?


Thursday, December 14, 2006

Slip Shod...

right bicep

and this is the current state of my right upper arm, bruised from shoulder (which was wrenched) to elbow, causing immense pain in my bicep (I suspected it was smacked on the edge of the bath with my weight behind it). With my right hand I can lift nothing heavier than a kettle, and then need somewhere to rest it.

My right ankle is much improved, but can only stay on it for ten minutes at a time before it becomes painful.

The bruise in the below photo was a surprise one on my inner thigh where I must have banged it on the shower glazing.

My left arm has a bruise on the wrist and one on the elbow where I hit the soap/flannel tray and the side of the bath.

My nose is incredibly painful to touch, although seemingly not broken. It feels a bit stuffed up and I have got some bruising around my eyes. Dunno what I hit that with - maybe my hand?

Bump on my head, bruises on my knees and that's about it.

Basically, I look like I've gone ten rounds with Joe Frazier......


I know I haven't Blog Foddered yet this week. I haven't forgotten, Moogie!


Wednesday, December 13, 2006

I just don't freakin believe it....!!

I was doing well on the course, I was having no real troubles commuting to the city daily and there is only one and a half days until my assessment, which I was feeling very positive about.

And then......

This morning I slipped in the bath, one leg in and one leg out. I banged my arm and my head and twisted my ankle. I didn't feel too brilliant but went to the SJA as usual, driving carefully as the pain increased. But I was so desperate to complete the course.

Once at the SJA centre my right arm became much more painful and I noticed bad bruising on my bicep. I couldn't use my arm to lift anything and the pain was moving down towards my wrist causing swelling. The twisted ankle was causing me to limp. Also, my nose had started to hurt and I assumed I had hit it in the fall.

I was too poorly to continue on the course. My right arm and bicep aren't strong enough to perform CPR and I would not be fit to complete the assessment tomorrow, which will involve CPR and recovery position.

So I'm back at home, battered and bruised and very, very annoyed with myself. As time goes on, more bruises and aches and pains are coming out. Wanna see one of them??

I'm sure there is nothing broken, but if the pain hasn't abated by tomorrow I will be visiting my doctor.

My place on the course has been deferred until I am able to complete it.


Monday, December 11, 2006


Well, I have successfully battled the traffic and am here, ready and raring to go.

My supplies were ready for me, so they have already been loaded into my car. One cup of coffee later, I discovered the free internet cafe in the coffee lounge.......

So now, how to learn all about saving people.......

Lunch - hmm so far, so good. We've covered the law, the workplace, communication, accident reporting etc etc. We've learnt the right way to put on an 'individually wrapped adhesive dressing' (ie a plaster!), bind a wound, double bind a wound, make a sling and learnt how to initially deal with an 'incident'......

Looking forward to tonight, I'm off to see Happy Feet with the gang!


Sunday, December 10, 2006


Tomorrow I start a four day First Aid course in Bristol, so it'll be long days for me until Thursday. Mind you, then I only have Friday 15 and Monday 18 in work, working from home on Tuesday 19 and then it's Christmas!! OMIGOD! It's Christmas!

Today we all had lunch to help RCA celebrate her birthday. Me, cyberkitten, sleepypete, bionicdwarf, RCA and K all had a very nice, albeit brief, lunch before they disappeared back down the M4 home to London.

Since then the usual Sunday stuff, cooking dinner, clearing up, sorting laundry, and huuuuge piles of ironing.

woohoo!! Jeans tomorrow! ['wear something comfortable'].......

btw - if you haven't been to see him, Jean-Luc has been hosting his annual Enterprise Christmas Party on his Blog!


Saturday, December 09, 2006

Beta Blogger

I have been to the Post Office today to send out parcels to Richmond VA and Hollywood......
Yup, a parcel is winging its way from my modest three bed semi in South Glos to a house in the Hollywood Hills....irrationally, I was so proud as I wrote 'Los Angeles CA' on the label. Silly, huh?

On another subject altogether, apparently I can now change to Beta. My dashboard now has an invitation on it.
Do I want to be a Beta?

As far as I can see, I can have more bells and whistles on my blog, but pay for it in that it is harder for some people to post comments.
The new blogs also have 'secure items' which cause problems in opening screens, for example at our workplace.

So, do I join the revolution and become a Beta Blogger? Or do I continue Old School until I *have* to change?


Friday, December 08, 2006

Must be Christmas

Our workload has increased at work and we are getting calls to Christmas decoration crises daily......must be Christmas.

Two parties in one week......must be Christmas.

Managed to find my way home alone from both of them (well, after the first I actually went to the Mall and did some shopping!)......must be Christmas.

Just picked MB up from the rail station after his Christmas/Leaving Do. He's pretty sodden and has gone to bed......must be Christmas.

Thinking when I must get the tree down from the loft and see if it's salvageable.......must be Christmas.

Working out when to go grocery shopping to avoid the rush......must be Christmas.

Arranged my leave, now desperately trying to get things finished before I go off for the break......must be Christmas.

Arguments in all the papers - too Christian.....should we rename it Winterval? Wintermas?......must be Christmas.

Adverts for Summer Holidays......must be Christmas.

........and our little guy, now a tradition forged over years on British TV........

once this chap appears we all know.....must be Christmas!


Monday, December 04, 2006

Blog Fodder #2

This week’s topic was submitted to Blog Fodder by Nikki-ann and it’s another good one.

Tell us about somebody who has changed your life, even if just a little bit.

Every one who has entered my life has changed it, from a momentary blip to a lifetime. In my childhood and teenhood it was people who made my life worse. That carried on into a disastrous violent relationship.

I had reached my lowest ebb, my life was meaningless and I could see no way out - that's when I met MB.

He was a manager in my new office and I didn't think much of him on first sight but working together brought us closer and we slowly made friends.
I decided to leave the destructive relationship, and the problems began in earnest. 'A' started stalking me, and I began sleepwalking and having screaming nightmares. MB was there for me, holding me and comforting me. He sat up at night and cradled me, he took me out to help me forget, most importantly he made me laugh.

He has always been demonstrative and loving, and in the back of my bedside drawer I have a wrinkled old piece of paper dating back over 20yrs, given to me at the height of my troubles, and written on it is:

Baby I see this world has made you sad
Some people can be bad
The things they do, the things they say
But baby I'll wipe away those bitter tears
I'll chase away those restless fears
That turn your blue skies into grey

Why worry, there should be laughter after the pain
There should be sunshine after rain
These things have always been the same
So why worry now

Baby when I get down I turn to you
And you make sense of what I do
I know it isn't hard to say
But baby just when this world seems mean and cold
Our love comes shining red and gold
And all the rest is by the way

Why worry, there should be laughter after pain
There should be sunshine after rain
These things have always been the same
So why worry now.

I don't need to see the paper and I don't need to read the words to know what they say.

They say; I love you and I always will. If you can't be strong I'll be strong for you.


Sunday, December 03, 2006


It's 6.15am on a cold and dark winter Sunday morning, and a storm is going great guns outside - the wind has been banging around for hours, bringing slashing rain etc. Charlie Cat woke me up for cuddles at 5am.

So, it's December already - time to think about Christmas.

Real or fake? I love real trees, but we daren't waste all that money if Charlie is gonna destroy it....

New or Charlicised tree? I'm tempted to just break out the tree from last year and try and resuscitate it long enough to see if Charlie will be using it as a climbing frame again.

Is Charlie going to outdo his efforts last year? That darned cat pulled down our tree every night last year - it was extremely stressful waking up to a broken tree every morning.

If so, is it worth even trying to put the tree up? er - yes......

Is it Christmas without a tree? er - no.....

What can I get my mum and dad? They are pretty much housebound in the Wilds of Scotland combined with scary intelligence - so no knicknkacks for them!

What can I get MB? What does one get the man who has everything?

The felines have got their Secret Paw name (a catblogging thing!) - so what do I buy to put in the box? Toys, treats and catnip - the cats have had suggestions on their bloggie.........

Should I go to Midnight Mass this year? I am so disenchanted with the prospect of Christmas - I can't help feeling I am losing my spirit. Perhaps Mass might help.......or not.......

Should I do the ironing now - or blog a bit more? I confess; I ironed.....I dusted.....I cleaned the cat tray and swept the floor.....waiting for the world to wake up!


Friday, December 01, 2006

This week in pictures.....

First and Foremost:

Today is World AIDS Day - Keep the Promise........

This week I received a parcel from far, far away.......all the way across The Pond in Los Angeles....

It's a calendar with the very stunning photos taken by our own OldOldLady :-) Complete with a beautiful Christmas card and loving message.

Naomi? - love you, honey.

Next - photos of me on the web? Let's photo, me sewing my borrowed re-enactment dress, me wearing my dress, me carrying my great-nephew, me with ck, me with Mrs A......I think that's it.....six!

MB came back from a car show brandishing a carrier bag. 'I bought you a present!' he declared. I ooh and ahhed appropriately (given that last time he got me a fab photo of JD!).....and he fished out of the bag.........

Not JD, but thoughtful just the same.......I needed tie-downs for my mattress for re-enactment in order to keep it rolled tidily.......thoughtful - but not JD.....

Finally, the felines have just received their Secret Paw for it's off to do the shopping......