twentyone: snow day!!!

Yesterday evening at about 8:30 after the united church service finished, Our Sidekick kept praying to God that there would be a snow day – every time someone mentioned school he was praying really hard that school would be cancelled for a snow day. Well at about 8:45 the school updated their website. The 21st January 2013 would be a snow day at his school.

Originally he was going to stay home at Chris didn’t have work – then between then and going to work this morning, Chris got a message saying that one of his volunteers couldn’t be there today as her kids schools were closed too.

I decided that Our Sidekick needed to go with one of us and given that work had been posted on the online school system and he still had his history project to work on that it made sense for him to come to work with me. Well he wasn’t a happy bunny but with a bit of encouragement with a bacon sandwich from the canteen when we got to work we set off for work.

Snow - 1

I snapped a couple of pictures outside of work, actually both these two came from one photo and yet they look so different. With Our Sidekick with me at work today I had to make sure that I took a proper lunch break – or at least long enough to get a sandwich or something to give to him so that he didn’t keel over or get grumpy through lack of food. I was kind of reluctant to go to the shop given the level of snow and slush outside but at the same time the canteen food is just getting worse – either through lack of choice or lack of flavour.

Snow -2

I’d ordered these Crochet Hooks from Curtzy via Amazon, and they arrived today. I got very excited and did a little dance – I think Our Sidekick still thinks I’m nuts but I guess part of it is encouraging him to accept his crazy too – unlike me when I was his age and was determined to surpress my crazy in the hope that I’d fit in a bit better – and look how happy that didn’t make me. I’ll stick with showing off my crazy and crocheting until my hands feel like they might drop off.

I finished helping Our Sidekick with his homework before I opened my crochet hooks properly. I’m beginning to think that I should do the assignments as well – Our Sidekick could hand it in and see if the teacher noticed that they’d gained an extra student in the class lol – oh and the fact that I’m 26 and a degree level student lol.

My new crochet hooks arrived. Christmas voucher well spent. Thank you @thecgbj (@cgbj)

I was crocheting away at my granny square that is part of a baby blanket for a friend and I went to remove the hook and the handle was still in my hand but the hook was still in the stitches. I messaged the company and then hunted for my superglue, after all I’d just posted a picture on Instagram about how awesome the hooks were which had also posted to Facebook, Twitter and Flickr. Hopefully someone will come back to me – I don’t mind hanging onto the hooks and fixing them but I’d at least like a new 4mm hook, or if they are being generous a refund or a case for my hooks would be good. I currently have a pencil case to hold my hooks in but I tend to gain pens in them too.

eighteen: my friday

Today was one of those days that I was so grateful for those around me. I had a horrible day yesterday and was just emotionally shattered this morning. Going to work was one of those “do I have to?” moments but actually once I got to work and got settled at my desk I was on a mission.

I had started a massive to do list yesterday to keep track of the ongoing outstanding bits I needed to do. About 10am it started to snow although it was tiny flakes that didn’t seem to make a lot of difference. But it became a joke about looking over to the window to see what was going especially as it involved looking at my managers desk. I had a chat with my manager which was good because it needed to happen kind of urgently.

By 1pm the canteen had decided to close and the staff in reception had switched to a skeleton staff for the rest of the day. We were let out early – I came home and Our Sidekick and me started on Italian homework and his History project. The history project isn’t going to be a one night assignment and is going to take a bunch of work – it means that he’s got history homework pretty much every day until its done. We’ve been learning about the Whitechapel Murders – also known as the Jack The Ripper murders. I want to include a psychological profile but that might be a bit over kill for Our Sidekick’s working level.

This evening I had dinner with two friends and then a third friend joined us. It was lovely to catch up, we played a card game called Dobble and a second one called Name Dropping.


Tomorrow we have another crochet session at The Fountain and I’m really excited. If you want to come bring a 4mm crochet hook and appear about 4pm ish.

284: #WednesdayWonderings

We live in a world where we have a bunch of information at our fingertips – we unlock our phones and Google to our hearts content, but what about all those random questions, why was I looking and what did I find out.


Fisheye app for iPhone – I post a lot of pictures to Instagram and wanted to play about with a fisheye lens but wondered if there was an app for that. The first app I tried was rubbish the second was £1.49 and decided that I wouldn’t buy it especially as I’d just cleared like 3 photography apps off my phone because I wasn’t using them.

Heathcliff musical – I’m currently reading Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë and vaguely remembered my Dad buying a CD for my Mum after she’d been to see Cliff Richard in some performance. Well him with a friend or two wrote and starred in a musical called Heathcliff and it revolved around the character of Heathcliff and his life. It’s only while reading Wuthering Heights that I’ve realised how little we actually know about Heathcliff as the reader. Emily carefully gives us just enough information to create this rugged and rough character but doesn’t give us too much and lose the enigma that is Heathcliff.

Chapter 7 “my dinner goes up in smoke” – I posted a picture on Instagram and was looking at other pictures with similar tags and this appeared in a picture. I was looking to find out what book it was from. I think it comes from The Lightning Thief that then became Percy Jackson and the Olympians.

Doctor Who 11th Hour - My friend Angelika is catching up on Doctor Who via Netflix at the moment, so while she was watching The Eleventh Hour episode (Rory and Amy’s first proper episode) she posted on my FB wall about how excited she was and how she liked the new doctor and wanted to know what his name was. Well I had a mental moment and couldn’t remember if it was Matt Smith or David Tennant. Okay before you demand my fan girl status back I was like 99% sure that it was Matt Smith but there was a tiny bit of doubt that I had to get rid of. Now I know and will remember.

Soap taste after temporary filling - A while back I had a hole in my tooth and got a filing – didn’t really think any more of it – sometimes my teeth are a bit sensitive but it usually combines with whatever I’m eating or how harshly I attempted to clean (or beat up) my teeth the night before! I went for my check up yesterday and told my dentist that I thought my tooth was decaying around my filing and could he take a look. So he had a look and a poke and said “Yes, your filing is loose – I’ll take it out and put in a temporary one” so he took it out with some tweezers (oh dear!) and then said “The hole in there is actually quite big, I suggest that we take out your tooth” Great okay last time I had an extraction I sat in the chair in tears and bit the dentist’s finger because I’d really had enough as I’m not 100% sure I was given enough anaesthetic (That was my old dentist – I am with my third dentist!). So back to the filing – I’m given a temporary filing to plug the hole and I have to book a date for an extraction. So that’s next week. I might cry. I might need the following day off work but that depends on how I feel. Anyway so following my dentist appointment all I could taste this soapy taste – it was really gross.

Losing my Boyfriend to World of Warcraft – Our Sidekick downloaded Minecraft at the weekend and this song kept coming into my head. It’s by All Caps

Piano in St. Pancras – I walked through St Pancras and could hear a piano being played and thought I was going a bit mad but there next to the lift is a graffitied piano and two lads were playing it. I wanted to sit down and play Für Elise but I had to catch the train. I found more information here.

St John’s ambulance history – we had a meeting on Tuesday and as we drove past the local St John’s Ambulance base we ended up having a whole conversation about how the St Johns Ambulance came about.

Chemicals in cigarettes – on Monday after getting back from London me, JD and Our Sidekick were sat at The Fountain and somehow what chemicals there were in cigarettes came up. There’s things like formaldehyde, benzene, ammonia and tar. They were just the ones I can remember off the top of my head.

12 Grimmauld Place actual location – having met Mel and Jelly at Platform 9 and 3/4s in Kings Cross Station on Monday I quickly googled to see if there was an actual address used for Grimmauld Place continuing the Harry Potter theme – according to my results there could be any number of addresses in London used as 12 Grimmauld Place. I found on Living The Scientific Life (Scientist, Interrupted) that the address is New Square, Camden. Apparently chunks of Westminster Tube station are used as the Ministry of Magic but I didn’t know that until I started writing this post today.

Hummingbird Bakery – I was trying to think of all the tourist things to do in London to take Mel and Jelly to then I decided that if we were close we should go for an afternoon piece of cake however turns out we were kind of in the wrong area of London for Hummingbird Bakery we were in Covent Garden area and I think HB is closer to Kensington – oh well that’ll be a trip for next time.


Image from here. Text my own.

245: #24hrGaming Marathon

(My brother and his best friend)

I don’t tend to blog on weekends normally as I use that time to get ready for the next week but this weekend is special. My brother and his best friend are doing a sponsored 24 hour gaming marathon to raise money for The Fountain. As I write this at my Mum’s PC (I needed to use her printer quickly!) they are chattering away about weapons and tactics for the game – I just have no idea what they are playing.

If you are able to sponsor them you can do so here. If you want more information about The Fountain go here or to send them encouragement you can tweet them at @kratos2466 and @azouk112 be sure to include the #tag #24hrgaming so we can keep track of them.


Thank you!!!

206: Bristol 2012 – Day One

Our first holiday with Our Sidekick

Having pretty much counted the days down (for 4 weeks!) to our holiday – it finally arrived!!

We set off about 9am toward Milton Keynes. Chris has a particular route that he takes when driving to Soul Survivor goes via Milton Keynes and then onto Buckingham.

Let's get this show on the road!! (or toad as I typed by mistake!)
Before leaving Bedford me and Our Sidekick got lunch from The Fountain and three drinks for the journey (I think it also puts Chris’s mind at rest about leaving for a week).

So having got lunch and heading towards MK. We decide that we’ll stop at Asda to get some petrol (It’s one of those strange things. If it’s en route to wherever we’re going even with a detour towards Bletchley for Asda and Ikea it’s still cheaper for the fuel. So given the route we were taking from Bedford to Bristol it made sense to fill up at MK rather than fill up at our local supermarket in Bedford.) We also had to stop off to get some bits for Chris. He’s attempting a gluten free diet as he’s not been feeling 100% and having chatted to the GP it’s the first thing he’s going to try. I keep joking about how he’s going to explode if he eats gluten by mistake lol.

As we pulled into Asda car park, me and Chris somehow started talking about Ikea breakfasts and how a fry up would just properly kick off our holiday – did you use to stop at Little Chef when heading on holiday (or on the way home at the end of the holiday) or was that just my family that did that?

We stopped at Asda for fuel. @thecgbj decided breakfast was needed.
We decided to grab a breakfast if they were still serving (they literally turned off the hot lamps as we were being served!!) I had bacon, sausage, two hash browns, beans and omelette. I also had potato scone. Because of Chris’s diet and Our Sidekick’s preferences we swapped and changed so I ended up with an extra sausage.

We then headed back to the car via Asda, the problem with three people in a store that big is that you can lose each other really easily.

I got a pack of two glues sticks to carry on with Our Sidekick’s journal (in theory this was supposed to be started in October when he moved in with us on a longer basis to record all the good times and the adventures that we’ve had).

Following shopping we got on the road. I ended up doing most of the driving yesterday which was okay but I was exhausted by the time we got to Bristol and the boys all had way to much energy to throw around! We found our hotel, they have enough parking for a drop off slot of about half an hour you then have to move your car to the local multi storey which serves Cabot Circus which is a big shopping centre.

I didn't request this excursion. A male member of our party did and it wasn't @thecgbj

After dropping off our car we went for a wander round the shopping centre – this was at Our Sidekick’s special request when he realised how close we are to the shopping centre (you can see Next and Cafe Rouge from our bedroom window!)

Then again it was a pretty amazing view from the third floor when you get out the elevator.

How epic is that roofWe took it on turns to choose a store to look around. I chose Paperchase for my first store – it was a concession stand in one of the department stores rather than an actual store of its own but it was still good.

After wandering round the stores for a while we headed back to the room to chill out. I watched part of an episode of Rizzoli and Isles on my phone (and realised that the rest weren’t downloaded it was just the titles! But it’s okay I still have the rest of Midnight in Paris to watch and given the number of restaurants across the way I’m sure I can get on the Internet somewhere if needed).

Following a call from Our Sidekick’s Mum it was all a bit tense. Our Sidekick wasn’t in a good mood, I was tired and just needed some tea and Chris was frazzled from the heat all in all we were all a bit in a grump.

We ended up at GBK for dinner, mainly because we couldn’t decide what we wanted and a lot of the places were either expensive or their best deals were at lunchtime not tea time. They were lovely and accommodating when Chris grilled the waitress about gluten free meals etc. They were happy to serve the burger without a bun or sauce and with extra salad to balance it out and things like that. Our Sidekick wasn’t in the moods for food but was happy to adopt some of my fries when they were offered. Me and Chris both had a Strawberry and Elderflower drink – it was really yummy and summery.

Summery drink to go with the summery weather outside.

I think it was a little more when it came to initial cost over a glass of diet coke but I think you got more for your money and a refill was £1 rather than the £2.95 (or the same as the original cost) which meant that when Our Sidekick decided he really didn’t like his we swapped and I finished his and then got another Strawberry and Elderflower.

All in all a good first day it was a little tense but it was chilled and close to base so if needed we could chill out.

Onto Day Two…….

114: Dear Monday

Dear Monday

Joining up with Megan from Happy Day Blog.

Dear Monday, the sun was shining this morning but by about lunchtime it clouded over and the heavens opened. It’s been raining pretty much for five hours straight now.

To my Manager, you rock! My colleague is on holiday and you’ve spent pretty much all day helping me out. You rock!

Dear Amazon Kindle Customer Service (Especially Rebecca H and Eleanor), YOU ROCK! I sent a chat message earlier and you asked me various questions but were able to diagnose that my Kindle is poorly and needs replacing. Can I have customer service lessons from your instructor?

Dear Rain, I know we need lots more of you due to the “drought” and “hose pipe ban” we’ve got but could it not rain when I don’t have a coat with me?

Dear Hot Chocolate, just what I needed after walking to the car without a coat and trying to park near The Fountain.

110: Life Thru a Lens {Photo Heavy}

Blogging seems to be a little past me at the moment but I have been snapping away like mad with my phone – mainly via Instagram. So I thought I’d share some and explain a bit more of what happens in the pictures.

We made it! #stockport #wedding #friends

My friends tied the knot this weekend. At the end of April it’ll be a year since I helped Dave (the groom) move up to live closer to his fiancée.

#selfportrait of sorts. #wiwt

I don’t really do dresses – I go through stages where I think about being more girlie and dressing up more and then through my own laziness most of the time (or I can’t find a dress that fits right) I stick with trousers and get on with the day. I think if I worked in a job where I was meeting with people on a day to day basis (rather than the people I work with I’d probably make more of an effort). While we were filing time between the ceremony and the evening reception do, we grabbed some food and then went for a walk around a local park. I managed to snap this photo while walking along a wall.

In the countryside #peakdistrict

On the way back to the motorway we took the pretty way – I snapped away taking a bunch of photos to occupy myself. Thankfully the sun came out and light up the hills amazingly. There are a bunch more pictures of our journey home on my Flickr Photostream.

I haz goodies from @chantillysongs!!!!

Look what arrived on Monday – as part of the Kickstarter project that kicked off Chantilly’s project to record her EP I got an envelope of goodies including a CD copy of the EP, a CD copy of her older EP and a postcard – it was very exciting especially given that I got home in a bit of a mood and the minute I saw the post on my doorstep I was so excited!

This is book 7 I think of 2012. Just saw that it was dedicated to #EstherEarl. A fab #nerdfighter who will be missed but never ever forgotten.

A while back my friend Adam told me about The Fault in Our Stars being released by John Green and if it was pre-ordered then it would be signed. Well I pre-ordered. The day the books were due to arrive there were rumbles (or shoutings) around the internet that copies were being delivered but they weren’t signed. The following day my copy arrived and thankfully it was signed. Well I finally read it and it’s sad and happy and memorable. I opened the first few pages and read the dedication – it was to Esther Earl. Esther was a fab girlie who was taken way before her time. She had cancer and she passed away from it last summer. I hadn’t ever met her in person but I’d seen her YouTube videos and somehow that made her more real to me (I mean like not just random YouTuber who I’d never meet in person etc etc – I make sense to me!). Some of the plot is set in Amsterdam and me and Chris went to Amsterdam for our honeymoon – almost five years ago!

My disposable fountain pen ran out :(

I like writing with a fountain pen. I have a posh nice Parker pen at home but I tend to use these disposable ones on the go so that if they get lost or misplaced it’s not too expensive to replace them (we’re talking £2-3 rather than £10-20). I have been using this blue one at work for about three weeks and it died on me yesterday.

That's me, my MacBook and my @hugstronger bumper sticker! Woohoo!

HUGStronger is about helping college girlies find their place – amongst other things. Kaleigh and her team hosted a similar project to Kickstarter via a website called Indiegogo. I was able to donate to this and received a bumper sticker – well I didn’t want to stick it to the bumper of my car but I decided to stick it to the front of my MacBook.

Finished #books #reading #2012 @realjohngreen

I think this makes it Book 7 of 2012 – I have caught up need to keep reading to stay on track to read 25 books this year (that’s about 1 a fortnight). I’m now reading Divergent by Veronica Roth after my friend Cat suggested it to me. So far it’s good – I think I’m about a quarter through it. (Actually according to GoodReads it’s 13%).

#imlisteningto Chantilly on my way to work. @chantillysongs

I grabbed this CD from my post pile this morning and stuck it on in the car this morning – I needed some sunshine giving how gloomy and rubbish it was outside. My favourite track is “Just The Way You Are” although “Escape” is replaying in my head as I write this post. (You can find Chantilly’s blog here).

8 days to go #birthday #dontforget

And to finish, it’s my birthday in 8 days – and yes I am probably going to tweet about it every day between now and then lol. I found out earlier today that I am birthday buddies with Ellefie (which I did already know) and ClareBot (which I didn’t know!). I’m a year older than ClareBot and a year younger than Ellefie.

097: Catch Up Time

So this post is technically being written on the 10th April.

With all the craziness happening to get The Fountain ready for being opened on Easter Saturday – aka 7th April – blogging is one of the last priorities after things like eating, sleeping and working. Hopefully this week I’ll fall back on track.

So what has been happening while setting up.

#oursidekick could tell that I needed a hug and food. Argh! Fed upski!

I arrived at The Fountain on Wednesday and a combination of things meant that I really wasn’t in the mood to be civil or nice to people – which is really bad. I sat upstairs and had a little cry. While I was sat there these appeared on the sofa next to me. Our Sidekick had been and raided the stash of sweets/fruit that we’d created during the week. He was my life saver! The banana gave me an energy boost and the sweeties were just yummy!

Chris's first coffee :)

The man from the coffee company was also there – I snapped this picture while Chris made practice coffees – this was his first one (well at least while I was there!).

Rainbow tea pots #hangingwithmumma

Following the banana incident my Mum and me went shopping – we actually went for various other bits but I loved this teapot display! If I was a tea drinker (on a regular basis) then I’d have lots of different colour tea pots I think! Then again Chris would tell me off for creating even more clutter!

It's not totally finished but me and mum managed to hang this door ourselves today. Just asked for help from Dad when we couldn't get the lock to work properly. #hangingwithmumma #girlpower

I took this picture Wednesday as well – lots of photo opportunities it seems! My Mum had commented about how this door needed to be put back on it’s hinges – somewhere in the conversation we ended up doing it ourselves! I made one phone call to my Grandad (who used to be a carpenter before he retired – then again he still is a carpenter just doesn’t “work”) about what size screw to use and then we got on with it. We’d managed to get it on it’s hinges but ended up taking a chunk out of each hinge bit as the door didn’t quite close properly. Dad gave it the once over but couldn’t quite sort it. He had an idea but we were all tired and I think we were going cross eyed by that point. We left it until Friday when Grandad popped round and checked the door (well our crafts”woman”ship) over to explain what the problem was – he also took out the lock bit and sorted it so it worked the right way up. To make that clear the people who used the building before had hung the door the right way up but the lock was the wrong way so you had to push up the handle to open it rather than down!)

I was busy making the coffee so didn't take a picture but I did it!! I made proper proper coffee!!

I’m sure it’s always possible that I was supposed to be doing something else but I made my first coffee – before I actually try and to it for members of the public I need more practice – for now I think I will stick to the till and clearing tables.

072: Dear Monday

Linking up with the newly engaged Megan from The Happy Day Blog.

Dear Inspiration, I’m beginning to think that I need some way of recording my blog post ideas while I’m in the shower because you send me the best ideas  but then I forget them by the time I’ve got out the shower and made it to my computer or a notepad. Clearly I need to work that bit out.

Dear Common Cold and Tiredness, clearly one of you led to the other and so I’ve spent this weekend being icky and full of cold. Our Sidekick got up Friday morning saying he had a sore throat and that he felt really tired – we just put it down to the week being really crazy and packed him off to school anyway. I think Chris’s thinking was along the lines of unless you are actually dying you’re not staying home and therefore you are going to school, see you later.

Dear Chris Since Tuesday you’ve spent nearly the whole of the week at The Fountain doing painting and cleaning and stuff like that. I think your first job this morning was cleaning toilets after we went to buy toilet brushes yesterday either that or co-ordinating the electrician. Each time I come to the building it’s changed and developed.

Dear Sidekick, You were set Science homework last week and I really couldn’t help you – we got so stuck but thankfully with friends like Sally-Jayne coming to our rescue we were able to finish of your homework ready for the deadline on Wednesday. Now tomorrow we have to finishing Geography and R.E. ready for next Monday.

Dear Chris (You get to letters a la Today’s Letters) Don’t forget to take a time out – you’re running head first at the Opening Day and if you’re not careful you’ll keel over in a heap – I’ll probably find you snuggled up next to The Fountain door or something. On another note tomorrow you and me have been together either as girlfriend/boyfriend or man/wife for seven years – can you believe that?