Wednesday, 8 January 2014

New Laptop

Have you heard the one about the dog chased the cat, the cat jumped on the unit, knocked a lead crystal vase onto the laptop then both things fell to the floor and smashed to smithereens?  So said owner of laptop had to go out and blow nearly all her savings on a brand new all singing all dancing laptop?  Well you heard it hear too!

We have a new laptop with Windows 8, which I am slowly getting my head around.  It's quite different from Vista and the touchpad is so much more sensitive.  We have lost about 7 months worth of photos, mainly of Mary-Jane.  Luckily she was not in the room when it all happened as she would have got hurt from it, with our room being so small.

Work is starting to get busy for me, and will continue to be for a couple of months.  Some of this busy-ness includes more meetings and more training days in Bury/Salford area.  I have been into work today, my day off, and have clocked up a mere 7 hours time owing plus travel.

I haven't done any knitting.  I am still cross stitching and enjoying it.

The only thing I have baked is a gingerbread house cake, using a Nordic Ware tin. I am lusting after a bundt tin that Lakeland have got.  I am trying to put that purchase off till next month and am therefore seeing it as next months treat, let's just see how long that line of thinking lasts.

I will try to start taking pictures - Mary-Jane has grown so much.  Did I tell you that I got myself a new camera the day after getting the laptop?  The laptop came in under budget and didn't have a portal for my old memory card so I just had to buy a new camera (oh the hardship!).  It was in the sale, with nearly a third off, so I did well with that as well.  The Laptop was in the sale as well, with £150 of that too.

I am enjoying having spending power again.  I have new clothes for the first time in nearly five years. I have new boots and posh smellies from Lush and The Body Shop to put in my bath.

Sylvia - if you're reading this please get in touch - I don't have your new address!

Thursday, 2 January 2014

2014

2014

The second day in and I have had the urge at last to re-commence blogging.  Let's see how it goes, before I start making promises of what I may do.

Literally half of 2013 was spent painfully waiting to start a new job.  With the new job would, naturally come money, a thing that has been a very rare commodity this last couple of years.  And with wages, comes the ability to kick down doors and start to live a better quality life.  The protracted wait took it's toll on me.  Provisional start dates came and went.  All I felt I had to talk about was the wait and how it made me feel, so I stopped.  Even I was getting fed-up of reading how fed-up I was.

So now, I am three months into my job.  Life for the three of us is improving and we are getting used to having money again.  I no longer worry myself stupid on how am I going to feed and clothe my family on £50 each and every week.  I can now look forward and feel I can hold my head up.

Blogging can now re-commence my friends!

Tuesday, 16 July 2013

Still hot and bothered

The hot weather continues apace.  We have had one day where it was in the lower 20's and that was gorgeous!  Mary-Jane continues to sleep with us.  She is increasingly complaining of being tired and is actually asking to be taken to bed during the day for 'snoozybugs'.  Something will have to give on that front quite soon, natural progression.  HK and I also continue to be tired through lack of sleep and the heat, not painting a happy picture!
 
It has been too hot to bake, although I am getting withdrawal symptoms from being in the kitchen.  I have made a fruit lasagne, which didn't turn out anything like the picture.  I like the principle of it, but thought it lacked very much in the 'cheese' sauce department.  I haven't even made anymore ice cream, and two 300ml tubs of cream have gone down the sink as they've not been used.  I hate waste like that.
 
There is still no word on when I start work.  I am still waiting for my driving licence and new passport to come through.  I would have hoped the licence would have been here yesterday or today.  There is always tomorrow.  The passport I am not expecting for another few weeks at least.  I might be in this new job this side of Christmas, you never know.
 
The Pi Shawl is coming on well.  I still haven't put it down yet as I know that I probably won't pick it up for quite a while, so I endevour and enjoy to do as much as I can at the moment - around 3 - 4 rounds an evening.  I have now come to the point where the pattern says to cast off or do the edging, so I am free wheeling now.

Wednesday, 10 July 2013

Hot

I didn't realise it had been a week or so since I last blogged.  I had actually written, or attempted to write a couple of posts, not getting as far as publishing. 
 
It is so hot.  Yesterday the car said it was 30 degrees c.  Wilt.  My feet, especially the right one, have swelled up like balloons, from hlaf way up my calf to nearly at my toes.  Standing up to be on the laptop is very uncomfy.
 
We have been busy.  We went for a beautiful walk a couple of days ago, there are downloaded photos, to be published.  I have been to Penrith today for work Induction.  I still have no start date, but they wanted me to attend induction as they didn't know when the next one would be.  My driving licence is not through, I am expecting it any day.  My passport has now expired.  No doubt they will want a current one.  I am sending off for a new one tomorrow. 
 
I have made some Lime Curd Ice Cream - and very nice it is too!  And strangely enough - very cream!  I have plans to make some strawberry ice cream and lots more past there.  All in the fullness of time.  I will put the recipe up.  I've not baked, but am ready to do the Chocolate Truffle Layer Cake.
 
The Pi Shawl is coming on lovely.  I think - I know I will have to do lots more rounds more than the pattern states as I have used lace weight yarn instead of 4 ply.  It won't bee finished as soon as i thought it would be - only 24 rounds according to the pattern.  I might be about half way when pattern is completed, though I am hoping it will be more than that!

Thursday, 4 July 2013

Trying

Last evening was a long one.  Mary-Jane didn't settle to sleep until 9.30.  Tonight was about an hour earlier.  When HK went into her room, she had thrown her blanket and pillow, taken her pj top off and ripped even more wall paper off the wall.  Not to mention the shouting and screaming.  Which had at least, taken longer to reach crescendo.
 
I took her out shopping today.  In the second shop she started warming up for a tantrum, so I went to put her in the trolley.  She screamed all the more and fought to not go in the trolley.  So I picked her up and carried her out of the shop and to the car.  She calmed after five minutes or so, then had another five minutes sulk and came around after that.  Unfortunately it took Granma a further half an hour to exit the shop, by which time MJ was getting restless.  Apparantly the till had broken down as she was going through, then got caught by someone she knows who can and did, rattle and rattle, despite after ten minutes me fixing her with a few 'certain' looks.  These for me, were still in the range of polite glaring, not my full on glare.  Perhaps that might have been more effective, but one has to maintain some degree of politeness.  It was the once that I hoped MJ would start shouting and screaming, never mind!
 
After that Mary-Jane did try really hard to be good, she slipped a few times, but In fairness, worked really hard with herself.
 
I have been treated to Peggy Porschen Baking Boutique.  There are a lot of cakes I want to make, surprisingly.  The first one may well be the Summer Berry Layer Cake or the Dark Chocolate Truffle Layer Cake.  I might not do it dark chocolate, I find dark chocolate a little too rich, or not on the top of my likings list.  There are a few more I want to do and have been inspired to create a few of my own.  The recipes say to use 6" pans for the layer cakes, something I shall have to put on my wish list.
 
My Pi Shawl is still coming on well.  I am now on 576 stiches per round.  I have the lace pattern for this section well sunk into my head, so I can do the lace rounds (alternate ones) whilst the telly is on.  I have been watching 'Endevour' these last two evenings.  It is Morse as a young copper, quite good.

Tuesday, 2 July 2013

Coming Up To Speed

Mary-Jane is continuing to sleep with us, all night.  She shouts and screams until HK goes into her and they go into our bed.  HK does usually go up around 7pm to lie on the bed and stretch out, read and listen to the radio.  Mary-Jane settles fairly quickly once she is settled in bed with Daddy.  It is Daddy that she calls out for and Daddy that she wants.  She is still tired during the day, as we both are.  I'm not too bad with it at the moment, but it is catching up with HK.  She is generally settling better during the night, not waking up with the screaming ab-dabs.  Daytimes are slightly better as well, not so many tantrums and not for quite as long or quite as bad.  Still a way to go though.
 
I've made my Key Lime Cupcakes this afternoon.  I am tempted to decorate them tomorrow and pretty-fy them, perhaps use an icing bag to put the topping on.  I've not tasted one yet.  I'm hoping to spend a good bit of time in the kitchen tomorrow, we shall see.
 
MJ and I went to playgroup this morning.  Only the usual protests from her as we left, luckily.
 
I have another provisional Start Date, but this does not take into account the fact that my clearance checks are not complete.  The Induction Date is now 10th July in Penrith, for the afternoon.  It may be a step forward, or just a red herring step in the mist.  In other words, I'm not banking on it, not am I disregarding it.
 
I went to the Woolfest on Friday.  I always love going.  And as usual I could have spent an absolute fortune.  There seemed to be more for felting and spinning.  Spinning will happen, but in a few years at least.  I made a mental note that I could buy automatic carding machines, now that would save a lot of time!  There seemed to be a wider range of stalls, rather than just weighted towards ready to knit yarn.  The animals were lovely to look at, the alpacas raised the biggest crowd.
 
Saturday evening I went to the Annual Friends Of Chernobyl's Children fundraising social.  Very enjoyable. It is the third time I have been now.  I came a bit close to winning one game of stand up bingo.  Dad won the big raffle prize - a rocking horse for Mary-Jane.  She - and I - were thrilled to bits with it. 
 
I'm still on with my EZ Pi Shawl.  I'm enjoying doing it.  I have just started the increase row, from 288 to 576 stitches.  I do wonder how much I shall be enjoying it then!  It is not as big as I hoped for, so once I have done set amount of rows, I will be driven by my enthusiasm as to how much more I do of it.  I should be starting a Tuesday Night KAL, but I haven't decided what yarn to use.  I want to use a plainish one, the pattern calls for 4ply.  I can't lay my hands on plain 4 ply, only dk.  I will have another look at what I have in the house and get cracking with that as soon as poss.

Monday, 1 July 2013

Catch Up

Just a quickie tonight, to keep me in the rhythm.  Busy, sleepless weekend.  MJ still having horrendous tantrums, though slight improvement.  My headaches and health are feeling the stress, as is HK's.  We are getting there though.  Knitting is flying - Elizabeth Zimmerman Pi Shawl - the one from the Knitters Almanac.  Made Lime Curd, not got to make the Key Lime Cupcakes with it yet.