Monday, April 30, 2007

Fun Monday # 15 Every picture tells a story!!

Julie over at Another Chance Ranch has set the Fun Monday Topic for this week: "Your best spy camera photo and story about the photo".

When Julie set this challenge I thought hmmm two heads are better than one for this!! I don't really have any 'spy' photos so I'll let you spy on me!!

When you get a new computer and suddenly you get an intermittent broadband and wireless connections, your brain explodes trying to sort things out so what do you do..... split yourself in two to operate both screens depending which one decides to work.

If this is not enough you puzzle and puzzle about all the new systems, your brain is addled and your face becomes so twisted you're are unrecognisable even to your nearest and dearest who is cursing because he can't send an email. He rants that you should be ringing the cable company to sort it out- never mind his e-mails what about my blogging!!

and eventually, when you've spent ages getting to speak to a real person in customer services and half an hour talking to some guy who actually says he can see there is a problem but the engineers can't seem to fix it, but he assures me they are working on it feel you're loosing yourself down a long tunnel.........

Will normality ever return you ask yourself... well it's not quite there yet!!

I don't think this is quite what Julie had in mind but it's the best I could do in a short time.
Hoorah logged on second attempt so this will get published.

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Sunday, April 29, 2007

Tortoises are expensive pets!

I cannot believe how much Topsy's recent stay at the vet cost us... wait for it £566.44 ($1132.88). I nearly fainted when Embee told me so it was short rations for us last week and for a few weeks to come.

This is more than the cost of 17 trips to Dublin or a trip to San Fransico.

Additionally I still had to bathe her daily try and get her to take a vitamin drink and force feed her peas- not easy I can tell you. I am please to say after being home a week she is now eating herself provided I find copious amounts of dandelions (I'm cultivating them in my front lawn) with some apple, banana and lettuce thrown in. We have also discoved tortoises eat Sedum and luckily enough we had one growing in our front garden (this won't last long so we will need to plant some more).
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Saturday, April 28, 2007

Hoorah for Skype

Today I had my first chat with Sam and Fred via skype video link (this is not a picture of that link, it's a picture I took when they last visited and I've been experimenting with the colour). I last saw them when we met up in the 'Big Apple' back in June 2006.
It was so exciting as Sam hadn't seen Embee or her Granny for about 18 months and all this for free, imagine how much it would cost to be on the phone for nearly an hour and not half as much fun. Sam was a little shy of me taking a photo as she had only just got up (I got one which it's not very good as she kept dodging out of view) but I noticed she was taking lots of us and we were in our grubby gardening gear. Sam I don't want any published unless I have vetted them first!!

I had no sooner signed off with Sam when the phone rang and a little voice said 'hello grandma I haven't talked to you for a long time so I thought I would ring you' and it was my youngest grandson.

We had a lovely chat he told me all about the party he had been to, he brought me up to date with the family news including the fact his mother was feeling the after effect tired after a night out and was lying on the sofa under a blanket (no blogging today)!!

I didn't do all the things I'd planned to do but I had a much more enjoyable time chatting the afternoon away.

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Friday, April 27, 2007

Help me up!!

Before anyone says I'm taking advantage of an 'elder' I have to say when my mother called me she was laughing and the first thing she said was 'have you got your camera'. I replied' I can't post a picture of your knickers for the world to see' she said 'I don't care'. So folks here she is and there's not a lot to see and she did get up without assistance because as she rightly pointed out I might not be around next time. I wonder why she even attempted to sit on the top of the stairs in the first place!!

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Thursday, April 26, 2007

Lemon Curd is Mellow Yellow

Barbara, over at winosandfoodies asked that we participate in Livestrong Day (New Zealand)

(LIVESTRONG Day is the Lance Armstrong Foundation's (LAF) grassroots advocacy initiative to unify people affected by cancer and to raise awareness about cancer survivorship issues on a national level and in local communities across the country. LIVESTRONG Day 2007 will occur on Wednesday, May 16.)

Barbara says "I'm asking all bloggers to participate in the blog event A TASTE OF YELLOW by making a dish containing some type of yellow food. This can be anything you like as long it features a yellow food".

As soon as I read this I signed up straight away. I'm normally very reluctant to participate in cooking events as I do not consider myself a particularly good cook and I'm an even worse photographer but cancer is something that touches us all and awareness needs to be publicised. Also I have been planning to make some Lemon Curd and this was just the motivation I needed to stop talking about it and get making it. Yesterday my mother was out with her friend so I knew I'd have the kitchen to myself and I made my first batch. Now you may not think three jars is very much but remember this is for eating not keeping.

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I used the BBC recipe by Burrastow House Hotel
Makes 4-6 jars

Preparation time less than 30 mins
Cooking time 10 to 30 mins

4 lemons, rind and juice
4 eggs
110g/4oz butter
450g/1lb sugar

1. Grate rind of lemons and squeeze out juice. Put sugar, rind and juice, butter and beaten eggs into a large basin on top of a pan of simmering water. Stir with a wooden spoon until thick and curd coats the back of the spoon. Pour into warm sterile jars, cover, seal and label. Refrigerate.

Anyone thinking of participating will need to email Barbara with details of the post by May 7th.

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Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Witty Wednesday # 4....What's the problem Eve

What's the problem Eve:

Lord, I have a problem
" What's the problem, Eve? "

"I know you created me, provided this beautiful garden and all of these wonderful animals, as well as that hilarious snake, but I'm just not happy."

"And why is that, Eve? "
"Lord, I am lonely, and I'm sick to death of apples."

"Well, Eve, in that case, I have a solution. I shall create a man for you".

"Man? What is that Lord? "
"A flawed creature . . . he'll lie, cheat and be vain; all in all, he'll give you a hard time. But he'll be bigger, faster and will like to hunt and kill things. I'll create him in such a way that he will satisfy your physical needs. He will be witless and revel in childish things like fighting and kicking a ball about. He won't be as smart as you, so he'll need your advice to think properly."

"Sounds great, " says Eve, with ironically raised eyebrows, "but what's the catch, Lord? "
"Well. . . .you can have him on one condition."

"And what's that Lord? "
"As I said, he'll be proud, arrogant! , self admiring. . . . . so you'll have to let him believe that I made him first. And it will have to be our little secret. . . . . . . you know, woman to woman."

Grandma changed

In the dim and distant past
When life's tempo wasn't so fast,
Grandma used to rock and knit,
Crochet, tat and baby sit.

When the kids were in a jam,
They could always call on Gram.
But today she's in the gym
Exercising to keep slim.

She's checking the web or surfing the net,
Sending some e-mail or placing a bet.
Nothing seems to stop or block her,
Now that Grandma's off her rocker.
hehehe is this me well I don't 'bet'

I'll leave you with a quote that fits my mood these days!!

The most memorable moments in life can be enjoyed by doing nothing.
--- Sheila Edenfield

So I'm off to do nothing as soon as I've prepared dinner, hung the washing, cleaned the house.............well I might get a few minutes to read the paper!!

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Tuesday, April 24, 2007

How long do you keep dried herbs?

Sometime ago (back in June 2006 in fact) Sam wrote a post on spring cleaning her pantry. In her comments she made reference to my whole nutmegs I won't tell you how long I've had them but she was quite young when they were brought from the West Indies and they didn't have sell by dates back then!!

I don't have a pantry but decided that I would start going through my cupboards and spice drawer and restock as necessary. I wondered just how long spices and dried herbs should be kept and found this article by Martha Stewart and although 6 months seems to be the optimum time this is not written in tablets of stone.
These all went in the bin, including the nutmegs (glass was recycled).

My spice drawer now looks like this

I do buy fresh herbs, I grow basil in a pot on the kitchen window sill and I grow some herbs in the garden.

Parsley is looking good.

I don't use much sage but I do love it when it flowers.

The mint and chives are looking a bit pathetic at the moment

The bay tree is well established and is kept well pruned to keep it small and manageable.

I have been wondering whether to invest in a herb keeper for the fridge which suggests you can keep herbs fresh for up to 3 weeks this way. Before I invest in one I would be interested to know if anyone has ever tried this method and if so does it work.

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Monday, April 23, 2007

Fun Monday # 14 Isn't every day a bad hair day!!!

Robin's our host for today:

What's her challenge? She thinks Bloggers are notorious exhibitionists...we bare our hearts...we bare our souls...and sometimes...SOMETIMES...we bare our faces. It's not our faces she's interested in,'s
OUR HAIR! She wants us to find our WORST "BAD HAIR DAY" EVAH! If you're the unfortunate soul who has more than one, well then, post as many as you're willing.

As far as I'm concerned everyday is a bad hair day and I get around this by being the person who takes the photos of the rest of the family. Most of my really awful photos have long since been cut up and thrown out never to be seen again. I managed to find a few like the teenage perm, middle age perm blowing in the wind, the time I asked for highlights and came out virtually blond. The day I didn't have a comb handy, a bun that looks as though it been stuck on top of my head (it's all my own hair I promise). I've also added a few extra to make up the number and thanks to darling daughter number 2 for preparing my collage (she's rather cross with me because I keep changing my mind about which photos to include sorry Beccy XX).

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Have a good laugh but don't be too unkind to this poor OAP who has seen better days but not many if these photos are anything to go by!!!

PS I have just noticed that Beccy's own collage did not include one particular photo that I sent her. If I get enough requests I MIGHT just post it!! (well if she'll let me- mmm if she says 'no' will I listen to her!!

11:15pm By popular request I'm adding this one of BECCY (I assure you it's not me) and as she pointed out its a bad face day but I think you'll enjoy it !!

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Happy St George's Day

St George is the patron saint of England and you can find out a little more here. You can also learn about the dragon slaying legend here.
The rose is our national emblem but I must admit not that many people wear one these days.

As 'Fish and Chips' is traditional English fare and to support Sam who wanted to dispel the myth that the English cannot cook, and to make those who laugh at English cuisine 'eat their words', I decided that this is what I would serve up in celebration of our national day. The fish is fried in breadcrumbs not batter (as is traditional), but I make my own breadcrumbs and there are a few less calories this way. I have not cooked my own fish and chips for many years and I had forgotten just how nice it is to have homemade chips and fresh cod; for Embee mushy peas are a must.

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I have not officially entered Sam's challenge but I am still keen to promote English cuisine. I have looked at the entry list and see many food bloggers are taking up the challenge, so if you have time when you've finished looking at the Fun Monday posts hop over to Sam and see the round up, you never know you might change your mind about English cooking -not that I'm suggesting any of you would laugh at our cuisine!!

I will be publishing my Fun Monday post later in the day.

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Sunday, April 22, 2007

The fruits of Embee's labour

Having bought two more blueberry plants last weekend, I needed some patio slabs laid to make a neat area for them in the sun. So yesterday we took ourselves off to the garden centre to buy the slabs, some plants for my tubs, and other bits and pieces. So today Embee amongst other things cut out the lawn, laid the slabs and the final result is as you see. All four plants have plenty of flowers and I'm hopeful of a reasonable little harvest given the size of each plant.

Embee is rather disappointed I didn't get the patio plants potted but I was too busy scanning photos for Fun Monday, and taking numerous phone calls from my youngest grandson. I dread to think what his mother's phone bill will be. He thinks it's great fun, we've chatted about everything from how well he's done getting to the next level of Star Wars game, he's read to me, sung to me, he's told me all about how he baked and decorated buns without any help, we played I-spy, I know what his mum and dad are doing, what he was eating for breakfast, lunch and dinner- no secrets when he's around. He's so sweet he wishes I could get on a plane right now and visit. There's no prizes for guessing what I will be doing once I have skype up and running!!!


Saturday, April 21, 2007

New iMac

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For those who have been following my recent posts you will know that I was expecting the arrival of a package on Thursday and some of you rightly guessed that it was my new imac. It finally arrived mid afternoon just as I was finishing scanning photos to send to Beccy. As I began to unpack the box I realised that our desk needed quite a lot of reorganisation (you'll remember how messy it was from an early fun Monday post). Having removed all the box files I decided I would tidy up the wiring and get rid of old phone cable and wires not attached to anything and oops I pulled out the wrong cable and the computer went dead, I quickly replaced the lead but nothing happened and Embee seemed to think I'd blown a fuse!!. So here I was with 2 computers and neither working so no blogging, but Beccy saved the day for me and agreed to let you all know what was happening.

Embee and I had visions of not being able to access our files for several days, but late last night I was speaking to Joules (Son-i-l) who said "you have checked the power connection" this was the only thing I hadn't checked and it must have been loose because the computer immediately jumped into action again so one problem solved (and I feel pretty stupid and I can see all you geeks nodding and thinking everyone knows that's the first thing you check!) .

Now the new imac is not yet connected to broadband nor have I got a wireless connection so that will take me a few more days to organise because I was unable to complete the configuration process (probably not the correct terminology) as I needed a password. The cable company were not helpful and the girl I spoke to didn't have a clue but said she would send me a disc. I'll probably get a wireless connection before that arrives.

What I have been able to do is start downloading photos from my camera and it's much quicker compared to the old computer and with the 20 inch screen it's so much easier to see. So I think once I'm fully operational I will be very happy with it. I'l leave you with a few hastily taken photos that have not been edited so are even worse than my usual efforts.
I have a lot of blog reading to catch up on from the last few days so see you soon. Enjoy the rest of your weekend and I hope it's as warm and sunny for you as it is here in the UK.


The answer to the Question is it fact or fiction!

I have just realised I failed to give you the answer to the question I left you with on the end of Witty Wedneday

Q: How did the sirloin steak get its name?

Well that delightfully, gorgeous, wonderfully amusing, princess of a daughter of mine has obviously been googling and she came up with the answer in the comments which is:

A: Legend has it that an English king, said to be Henry VIII, James I or Charles II, liked the steak so much, he knighted it, giving it the name "Sir Loin." The table where this event is said to have taken place can be seen at Hoghton Tower (which is near Preston) in Lancashire.
But according to the Oxford English Dictionary, the word comes from French and simply means "above the loin."

The story that James I knighted the loin steak is taken from a tale relating to James' generosity in giving friends (and those who would pay the sum of £50) a knighthood.

Our English royalty were often eccentric (some would say still are) so it could well be that one of them did something this daft as for it to be true and it is quite amusing; however the dictionary version seems logical so you can decide which you prefer to believe.

P.S. I will be doing another post later today to explain my 24 hour disappearance from the blogsphere.


Friday, April 20, 2007

Days without a computer #1

by Beccy

'Aha' thought Beccy as she glanced furtively to the left then the right, 'now I've hacked into Mum's blog what damage can I do? What tricks can I play? What fun I can have'

Ahem, oh hello there I've just popped over to let you know what happens when you spend your day blogging, ignoring the vaccum and refusing to venture out of the house, even into your own backyard. Yes you will hear the doorbell ring (thereby slamming the phone down on your delightful daughter in a rush to answer the door before the delivery man goes away) but your poor old computer will have suffered from blogging overdrive and when you accidently remove that wire it will give up on you (no matter how hard you try, how many wires/cables you check and double check or how many times you consult your guide) it will be kaputt.

On day one of no blogging you will talk to both daughter number 1 and number gorgeous and lament your withdrawal symptoms. You will repeatedly ask your amusing daughter computer questions to which princess daughter will continously reply that she doesn't know, she is married to a computer genius and therefore doesn't need to know, she has a PC not a Mac and has a computer geekness ranking of 17 (much lower than her mother's not to mention her sister's). The one thing that wonderful daughter can do is write a post for her mother, explaining her mothers situation, how she is missing writing her blog and reading your blogs.

Mum is doing the best she can to fix her problem and will be back asap.


Thursday, April 19, 2007

Why is it that...

Goods are not delivered to schedule let me explain:

I am waiting for the delivery of a bulky item that was ordered on 8th April and on my invoice it says it will be shipped on the 12 April and yes I had an email to confirm this so no problem so far.
I was given an estimated delivery date 19th -20th April. So what happened yesterday on the 18th April I left the house for 45 minutes at the same time as my mother went out with a friend and you've guessed it when I returned there was a yellow card to say I had missed the delivery (remember I don't swear but on this occasion s***).

So today I will be be sitting waiting patiently for the second attempt, I'll be too scared to go into the back garden as I can't hear the bell- lets hope it arrives early knowing my luck I'll sit here all day and I'll be the last delivery. No I must think positively and

of course there is an up side

I won't be able to use the vacuum far too noisy (I feel better already),

and I will be forced to spend a lot of time on the computer quietly blog hopping and scanning photos that Beccy wants while I'm waiting, waiting, waiting (but without feeling guilty hoorah)

wish me luck.


Wednesday, April 18, 2007

What is happening to the world.

I have just published a frivolous post but I felt I wanted to say how sad I felt when I heard the tragic news of the pointless deaths of all the students and teachers in Virgina Tech University. I'm sure I'm not alone when I say that the families of those who lost their lives and everyone affected are in the thoughts and prayers of the world at this sad time.

Witty Wednesday # 3.... 21st Century thinking

I think my hubby should start his own blog of humour he's become a real fan of Merle's when he found her link on my blog. This is another sent to him by a friend and he has now started emailing them to me when he's at work.

A 17 year old girl tells her Mother that she has not had a Period for 2 Months. Very worried the Mum buys a Pregnancy Test Kit from Boots. The Test result proves Positive.

The Mother screams "Who was the filthy Pig who did this to you? I must know."

Nonchalantly the girl picks up the Phone, dials a Number and speaks softly. 30 minutes later there is a ring at the front door bell, the Mother peeps through the window, sees a 2007 Model Ferrari parked in the drive, goes to the door and opens it to be greeted by a mature and distinguished looking man with slightly greying hair, expertly coiffured, attired in an Armami suit, with gold rings adorning his fingers and an expensive watch around his wrist. He kisses her extended hand and enters the house.

He, the Mother, Father and Girl sit in the humble lounge to discuss the problem facing them all.

The man speaks first and says "I appreciate the problem, I cannot marry your daughter as my personal circumstances would not permit it, you can be however assured that I will take 100% charge and cover all and any costs, now and in the future, and for the rest of her and the unborn Baby's life."

The Parents nod approvingly.

He continues "Also, and in addition, if the Baby is a Girl I will settle 2 large Department Stores upon her, a Town House and a Beach front Villa in the West Indies and a £2,000,000.00 Bank Account and £3,000.00 per month rising by £500.00 per month for every year of her Life. If the Baby is a Boy, he will be bequeathed 2 Factories and a £4,000,000.00 Bank Account and a Mansion in the Country, plus £4,000.00 per month. With annual raises the same as the girl. If they are Twins, each Twin will receive a Factory, Town House, a Yacht and £2,000,000.00 each, plus £1,500.00 per month, plus similar annual raises - - - - - - However if there is a miscarriage, well to be perfectly honest, I am not sure what to do then?"

At this point the father of the girl, both he and his wife had remained silent and dumb — struck through all of this, unbelieving what they were being told, sprang to his feet, placed a hand firmly on both of the man's shoulder and tells him, shaking him fiercely and shouting at him, telling the scared man what he must do:-

Scroll down a little bit.

Scroll down a teeny bit more.

Scroll down just a shade more.


"You must make love to her again!" (was it a bit too obvious!!!)


As I was preparing this post yesterday, I happened to be listening to the Chris Evan radio show and he posed a question that struck me as being rather amusing so I'm going to put the same question to you to see if you can come up with an answer (hopefully) without googling it. Sorry no prizes for this one.

Q: How did the sirloin steak get its name?

I'll post the answer tomorrow.

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Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Birthday Meme

Birthday Meme

Terri from my4kids tagged me with this meme:

1. Go to Wikipedia and type in your Birthday Month and day only. January 25

2. List 3 Events that occurred that day:
-1791- The British Parliament passes the Constitutional Act of 1791 and splits the old province of Quebec into Upper and Lower Canada

-1881 - Thomas Edison and Alexander Graham Bell form the Oriental Telephone Company. (where would us bloggers be if this hadn't happened)

-1919 - The League of Nations is founded. ( this was followed by the United Nations after 2nd world war)

3. List 2 important Birth days.
-1759 - Robert Burns, Scottish poet (d. 1796) (well I had to choose this one)

-1882 - Virginia Woolf, English writer (d. 1941) (probably most people have heard of this lady)

4. List 1 Death.
-1981 - Adele Astaire, American dancer (b. 1897) (I loved Fred Astaire films [I was a frustrated dancer in those days]) and didn't realise his older sister was a dancer)

5. List a Holiday or Observance. (if any)
- Burns Night - Burns suppers are held in many parts of the world around this date. (Originated in Scotland) (as I've already mentioned RB I'm going to add a second)

-St. Dwynwen's Day - Welsh celebration of love Diwrnod Santes Dwynwen. ( I enjoyed these legends)

6. Tag 5 other bloggers.
I don't want to pressurise anyone into doing this meme but I'd be delighted if anyone decided to take up the challenge. I found it very interesting reading all the historical events that took place on this date.

Now why didn't I think to tag elena jane she's tagged herself so I will look forward to reading her meme.


Monday, April 16, 2007

Fun Monday # 13

The challenge Bethany has set us this week is to answer James Lipton's ten questions. I've actually never heard of him or his TV programme (Inside the actors studio).

What is your favorite word?
Supercalifragilisticexpialedocious! For no other reason than it's the first word that came into my mind.

What is your least favorite word?
Existentialism- Well what the hell does it really mean- it's not about answers it's about questions he he.

What turns you on (creatively, spiritually or emotionally)?
Any sad story will have me in tears. So anyone who writes an emotional post will know I'm me sitting here in tears.

What turns you off?
Being put down, I can get very agressive if I feel I am being treated unjustly.

What is your favorite curse word?
Oh dear I don't really swear well not often I might say the odd damn, (knickers was a favourite when I was nursing) or sugar ( probably a substitute for another sh.. word.

What sound or noise do you love?
I'm always thrilled to hear the voices of my children and grandchildren on the phone. I also love it when they are staying with me all happy laughing and joking. Ben just loves to play tricks on me and his laugh is infectious.

Also I love the sound of the sea. What can be nicer than hearing the waves lapping on the shore particularly as it usually means I'm on holiday.

What sound or noise do you hate?
The sound of the alarm because if I've set it then it means that I absolutely have to get up rather than wake up naturally and relaxed.

What profession, other than your own, would you like to attempt?
Being wealthy - well it's a profession for some and I would sooo like to try it.

What profession would you not like to attempt?
A model, who'd would want to:
be thin, wear fantastic clothes and jewelery, travel the world, have enough money to buy whatever you think you want and mix with the 'A' list, always have to be dieting, (no chocolate, cakes or biscuits), live on salad and vegetables (no fish and chips or roast potatoes) and after all that still be air brushed because you don't look good enough. (how great does that make anyone feel)

If Heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the Pearly Gates?
I'd be happy if God said 'You are welcome here because you have tried to lead a good life, caring for your family, working hard and helping people, you have not always succeeded but you have always tried to do your best'.

Well there you have it I'm going to publish before I change my mind!!!


Sunday, April 15, 2007

What a mess

I cannot believe I'm going to let you have a glimpse into the shambles of our garage and cellar. I'm desperate to get it all tidied up and I'm hoping that by posting these photos I will shame myself and embee into doing something about it. When It is tidied I will post another set of photos but it won't be for some time. Today is being spent on the back yard. I have been cleaning up all the rubbish and getting rid of the green mould we seem to get every winter on our balcony, oil tank and back steps. It may not seem a big task but everything has to be bleached. I've come in to get lunch while it all dries. The real problem is that this area never gets any sun.

You wouldn't know it from this photo but there is a small printing press in this room together with cases of print. There was time when Embee did a lot of printing such as business cards and letter headings.

My washing machine is in the cellar but the sink is also used for cleaning paintbrushes etc. if only someone would actually do just that!

You could never get a car in the garage. Actually it's where I keep my freezer and Embee used to use it for keep fit but you can't even get at the weights.

What I really want is to have this area clear with shelves up all around so that we actually know exactly where everything is instead of scrabbling around searching for tools which frequently happens.

Do you keep half used tins of paint just in case something need a touch up. I'm sure half of these tins could be thrown away.

Now the wine cellar is relatively clear (I wonder why) but it does look in need of a re-stock!


Saturday, April 14, 2007

Tortoise weigh in

The local branch of the British Chelonia Society organises a weigh in and health check for tortoises twice a year (before and after hibernation). You don't have to be a member to use the facility but donations are welcomed. As I mentioned the other day Topsy (front of photo) is still at the vets but we took Tog (middle) and Tom along and they were both Ok. This year Tom was slightly under weight but nothing for us to worry about and Tog had a little damage (which will need some treatment) to her shell caused by Tom, when he gets a bit amourous. In fact I think this is why he is under weight he spends all his time chasing Tog and not enough time eating to keep his strength up. Poor little Tog often hides under the ramp or she retreats to the house. It's worse at the moment because it's very warm (libido high) and he only has one his females available.

The photo below is of Erik (an African tortoise I believe) who is still not fully grown and is already huge (he's around 6 stone already and I don't think the photo actually conveys how big he really is). Erik eats a huge amount of fruit and vegetables and he has become quite an attraction at this event. He was particularly active today and it was quite difficult to get a photo (probably wishing he had a mate!!).

I wonder if any of you have tortoises as pets?

Today's venue was a garden centre so among other things I was able to get a couple more blueberry plants, a blackberry, more parsley, tomato plants and compost to re-pot the cacti. So now you know what I will be doing tomorrow!

Postscript- Just in case I wasn't clear Erik does not belong to me I don't think I could afford to feed him !!

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Friday, April 13, 2007

My computer

I'm borrowing this from alisonwonderland as I couldn't resist the challenge when I saw her post a couple of Saturdays ago.

Me and My Computer

1. PC or Mac? (You must choose one or the other.)


2. How much do you like one over the other, and what's the main reason?

I have only ever had a mac and although I used a PC for work I am sticking to my mac and am about to buy a new one. However we do have a macword programme installed as embee found he couldn't read some attachments sent from PC's (with the help of my son-i-l, thanks Joules, I've actually ordered my new imac and am now eagerly awaiting delivery from Cork in Ireland believe it or not). I haven't really answered the question- now why do I like it- lets just say better the devil you know!!

3. What would be easier to do without for a week: your cell phone, your television, or your computer?

That's easy, definitely my cell phone I hardly ever use it. It comes from the arc and is the one and only cell phone I have owned.

It's so big and heavy that it can be a nuisance to carry and I can't use it abroad, except in Ireland, which is useful. It has a crack in the glass and sometimes the face has to be pushed hard before I can see it but I am still too miserly to upgrade. Much as I envy my daughters having camera phones, very useful for blogging!

4. Take the quiz: Are You a Computer Geek?
How do you compare?
My computer geek score is greater than 29% of all people in the world! How do you compare? here to find out!

Help- this is a very low score I am almost too ashamed to let you see it. My computer geek score was originally 25% but I had to re-do the test as when I first publish the link had disappeared -show just how much/ little I know even though I've increased my score he he)

5. What things do you feel more addicted to than your computer?

Is there anything I could be more addicted to !! I don't think sooo.

6. If your computer has to go in for service and you're without it for a week, and you have the chance to log on at a different computer, which are you most likely to do first: check news headlines, check email, or update your blog?

Check email first closely followed by updating blog. I'd be missing my friends. I really enjoy my daily delve. I'm a lurker and only comment regularly on a few, well maybe more than a few!

Have a go and if anyone gets a score lower than mine we can commiserate together.

P.S. I hope to have some exciting computer news in a few days, have just received an email to let me know my order was dispatched yesterday and should arrive on or before 23/4. However, with such a low 'savviness' score will I be able to set it up I ask myself. Well I did manage it the first time around when I knew even less than I do now and I can always ring Joules if I get stuck!!

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Thursday, April 12, 2007

British is Best- traditional English meal

My daughter Sam at 'becks&posh' has set a challenge on her food blog to promote English food and whilst I've not officially entered I decided I would do my bit anyway. I've shown you my hot cross buns and my Easter biscuits and today I'm going to show you a few photos of a traditional English meal. I've also been trying to follow Sam's example and buy local produce. Well here in the UK that's easier said than done. It's almost impossible to source food that's produced within a 100 miles radius but for this meal I made sure everything was produced in the UK.

My computer won't support picasso so I had to enlist Beccy's help to put together this collage.

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The beef is 'topside' and although Irish that's Northern Ireland which is still British. The vegetables are all organic. The leeks come from Lincolnshire, the sprouts from Fife and the potatoes, carrots and parsnips from Perthshire (Scotland). The horseradish sauce is made closest to home about 25 miles away in Stonehouse in Gloucestershire (I got this at a local Farmer's market I'll tell you more about that soon). The Yorkshire pudding is made with organic milk and egg, of course I have no idea where the wheat for the flour is grown. The rhubarb we grow ourselves and this was the first picking of the season and the crumble recipe I used is this one. The mustard is the famous Coleman's (Sam if you read this see the quote "ONE TABLESPOON OF MUSTARD WILL STOP THE HICKUPS." I think your cure sounds much more pleasant but I know you like mustard- now I've got you all curious). The gravy is made from the meat juice and is very tasty.

Drat I've only just realised I didn't even think about where the wine came from, I've run down to the cellar to check and oh dear it's French so I didn't quite achieve the all British meal!!

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Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Witty Wednesday # 2

This is my second attempt to make you laugh. As many of you will be aware my daughter lives in Dublin and my son-in-law is Irish. I love the warm friendly Irish hospitality and I know they enjoy a good joke.

An Irishman was terribly overweight, so his doctor put him on a diet.

"I want you to eat regularly for 2 days, then skip a day, and repeat
this procedure for 2 weeks. The next time I see you, you should have
lost at least 5 pounds."

When the Irishman returned, he shocked the doctor by having lost Nearly
30 pounds!

"Why, that's amazing!" the doctor said, "Did you follow my

The Irishman nodded..."I'll tell you though, by jaesuz, I t'aut I were
going to drop dead dat 3rd day."

"From hunger, you mean?"

"No, from all dat f*ckin' 'skippin' " the Irishman said . 

I expect you got there before the punch line as I did but it still had me laughing.

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Tuesday, April 10, 2007

A visit to the country

Yesterday we spend a very pleasant day with my brother and his wife. We were able to sit in their lovely garden and enjoy the sunshine. My s-i-l cooked a superb lunch complete with freshly picked broccoli grown by my brother. My niece and her daughters arrived in time to join us for dessert and then we walked across the field at the back of their house to feed a neighbour's goat.

This is Jasmine she is the smallest of triplets and the one who is being hand reared. Mummy goat and her siblings remained close by watching. Jasmine was ready for for a good guzzle as you can see.

On my way back I picked a lot of dandelions for my tortoises (Tom and Tog) and they quickly tucked in as this is one of their favourite foods. We actually have three tortoises but the other one (Topsy) is at the vets being treated for mouth rot which seems to be a recurring problem for her after hibernation.

PS I actually got to drive our new car home so that Embee could have a drink or two so he was a happy chappy!!

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