Friday, April 29, 2016

Good News!!!

Well, I can tell you I am soooo excited !!!!
I finally got my new Fit Bit Band- and I have a BELIEVE in yourself Bracelet to go with it.

Im actually looking forward to weighing myself on the Morning to see how much I have lost..... Notice I didnt say IF I had lost- I said How MUCH I had lost!

At any rate...
There they are.

Now.... I'm also undertaking a new language too.. I'm learning to speak Italian!!! I think Italian is the most beautiful language in the world!!! Of course, I only know one person who actually speaks Italian over here...by Bezzie, Betty, but at least WE can have conversations in that lovely language!! Plus I can order in a real authentic Italian restaurant too. Spaghetti or Lasagna, anyone?? Hahaha

I just started last night on the course, but I already have the most important statement down pat.

"Non hai preparato il cafe per me. Si dovrebbe farlo immediatamente prima che qualcuno muore."

Which pretty much means "You have not prepared the coffee for me. You should do it immediately before someone dies."

See? VERY important statement.

I also know how to say I have visited Rome and I have visited Milan.....which are total lies but I can substitute Amerkca instead.  Bahahahaha


Anyway, It's a Long Bank holiday weekend here so a nice relaxing weekend. Well, I do have an MRI to attend tomorrow afternoon, but other than that. zilch. I think I'll work on my books a bit. And learn some more much needed Italian phrases.......







 

Saturday, April 09, 2016

Hot Diggity!!

Well, I've had no luck recovering my fitbit band that somehow got misplaced while I was recharging the  innards and doing my spring cleaning the other week. So- as I was planning on getting a new one anyway(it was a dull slate blue and looked terrible with everything I own) I just went ahead and ordered a new band in black. Tough decision between the black and the Hot Pink one- but I can get the pink for my anniversary prezzie next month. The black will go better with my outfits for work.

I weighed myself this morning and I somehow managed to lose another 1.6 lb despite eating a huge Philly cheesesteak sammich and a slice each of pumpkin and pecan pie I made for the sammich swap we have in our department every three or four months.
That just gos to show if you eat smart the rest of the week you most certainly CAN have a lovely  free meal and treat yourself to a couple of (insert your fav treat food here) every week.

My headache has eased up a bit- but is still there. My GP sent me to a Nose Throat and Ear specialist who ran some tests which came back negative for any problems with my sinuses being the culprit. Next is a visit to the  Neurologist and an MRI to see if I have a brain. Hahaha....

The doctor told me to stop taking any kind of OTC medications for my headaches until the MRI was done so any problems wouldn't be masked. It's been just over three weeks now.  Sometimes I wonder what would happen if I just stopped taking ALL my medications. Then I think about how bad the Acid Reflux and ulcer was and the headaches and dizziness from the high blood pressure and the crazy psychopathic tendencies with the Menopause and chunk that idea right out of the window.

It's been a 10 year journey trying to get my self sorted out and I cant throw it away now.

Okay- well......Now for other stuff.

I reread Michael's book " Except for His Wings" last weekend.  It was on my mind for a few days before- certain phrases kept popping into my head and so last weekend I pulled out my Kindle and re-read it. And it was just as good the second time round- even this close to having read it the first time. It made me feel there is hope for this world- and there is a reason for even the bad things that happen in or lives or the things we dont understand.  It brought a bit of my optimism back when it was really starting to flag.
I also read The Serial Killer's Wife. That was also a feel good book.....it didn't end the way I thought it would when it started out and that was a good thing. 
- altho I did guess who the villain was halfway thru(well, sort of)- and there was a twist to that as well.
One thing I have learned.......Books are like Artwork- ten people can read a book or look at a piece of art and have totally different inspirations, opinions and thoughts from/of them.

So- today's plan is to get the kitchen cleaned up before hubby gets up- then make the 60+ mile trip to Le Parents to pick up our packages and have a nice visit with them.....then pick up milk and sammich fixin's from Tesco- and then come back and do a couple loads of laundry.
.........and Play Minecraft.

Still mulling over that Minecraft Blog/Vlog. Maybe one a week...or every other week.
Still Mulling...........




Monday, April 04, 2016

Minecraft....and Anniversaries

As I have a few grandkids and friends who play Minecraft- I've been thinking of making a Blog dedicated to some of the things I do on it. Post Photos and stories about things that happen and what my projects are.... I've also thought about doing a V-log instead of an actual Blog.

Just mulling it over now. Not decided yet.

Today marks the 12th Anniversary of Paul arriving in the states for our wedding a few weeks later that year.

04/04/04 and 05/15/04... Days to remember.


Thursday, March 10, 2016

Except For His Wings

I just finished reading Except for His Wings by Michael Dodd.





Anyone who knows me more than five minutes knows how much I love to read....
And this book is well worth  every cent you spend on it- which isnt near enough if you ask me.

I bought the Kindle version and read it and I will now be buying the hard-copy version to put on my "well loved and to be re-read many times over the years" bookshelf. I loved the story....I was in tears at the end of the book, but in a good way. It's been a long time since I read a book that made me feel that way.

If you love to read- and love to be involved in the story- buy this book.

There are lots of lessons to be learned from it...in a good way.

More Please, Mr. Dodd.

Sunday, March 06, 2016

It's My Favorite Past-time.


Saturday, March 05, 2016

Best & The Worst

So much to talk about today!!

Devon's Skateboard....My Grandson, Devon, broke his skateboard last weekend. He's such a good kid. 4.7 Grade point average in school, is in the top 10% of his class, and wants to go to college to become a veterinarian....(for now that's the plan. As with all 15-year-olds, that is subject to change). He's never given his parents a sleepless night- that I know of(and I'm sure I would have heard had that been the case). He's kind, generous, and polite.
When I saw the photo of his broken board on FB I messaged him and asked what board was he going to get to replace it. and as usual, he said " I'll just find a used one at the flea-market or maybe one of my friends might have one I can borrow." That child has always had second-hand ones since he started skateboarding- and never complained about it or asked for a new one.  I asked him what was his dream board and he told me about one he wanted but was saving for because it was a bit expensive. I told him his grand-papa used to skateboard when he was his age (and was a proper whiz on the things-in the blood I guess, eh?)so I knew a little about what he was talking about, but asked him to send the link of the one he wanted so I could properly appreciate it.
He did, and while he was telling me the virtues of it and explaining that he might just get the deck and use the old wheels off the old board because the deck by it's self wasn't  too expensive and he would have the money for it in another month or so when warm weather finally came to stay, I looked at the website and saw the deck was about £50...or £35. The board, fully kitted out was $102...or about £70. I was listening to him talk about it as I placed an order for it fully kitted and had it sent to him. I figured since I hadn't sent Birthday gifts since I'd been here-only cards- I could treat him.
 His mom took photos of him opening it when he got it.


That smile was worth every penny.


Mr. Fish....There is a teacher at Devon's school called Mr. Fish. He gave an assignment to his Advanced Placement Lit class to write an anonymous poem. Then they were all passed around and read out loud and everyone had to guess who wrote each one. Apparently, he wrote one too. With the F-word in it. And some sexual content. I guarantee you it was less sexual than most teens these days have heard. If you click on the students comment Link at the bottom of this section you can read the entire article including  the poem and the students comments. It's interesting to say the least- I'd go so far as to call it eye-opening.
The following is By Frances Parrish of the Independent Mail.

The resignation of a popular Easley High School English teacher has prompted an outcry from students, who have taken to social media to call for his return.
Greg Fish "will not be returning to school or the classroom," the School District of Pickens County said in a statement.
Many students stood up for Fish. Since two petitions asking for Fish to be reinstated were launched a couple of days ago, more than 4,000 signatures had been collected as of Monday afternoon.
"It's obvious who the students want," said 17-year-old Easley High School student Brinae Smith. "It's obvious how much he has impacted us."
Fish was not just a teacher, but also a mentor for more than a decade, students said on social media.
"Mr. Fish encourages us and inspires us. It seems that an overall atmosphere of apathy exists among the halls of our school. Mr. Fish is one of a handful of teachers who makes our school days worthwhile. He is one who expects us to think for ourselves and not just accept what we are told," said Abigail Caldwell, a student in Fish's AP literature class in a Facebook message. "Losing a true educator and student advocate like Mr. Fish is detrimental to the students and to the school. The supportive response from current and former students is a testament to the passion we all share for this issue."
According to a petition description, Fish had led an off-campus poetry roundtable a couple of weeks ago for his AP literature class. The poem the district received complaints about had sexual content and included the use of the F-word.
Monday morning, the district said in an initial statement, "Last week, administration received complaints about content that was shared by an Easley High School teacher. The district administration followed its standard procedure by placing the teacher on leave in order to investigate the allegations. The teacher will not be returning to the school or classroom. As always, the district's primary focus is the education and welfare of its students. The administration will do everything necessary to make sure students have the academic support that is needed for the remainder of the school year."
School district spokesman John Eby sent another statement Monday evening.
"On February 26, the school district accepted the resignation of Mr. Greg Fish, an English teacher at Easley High School. Mr. Fish will assist the teachers who will instruct his classes for the remainder of the year, although he will not be returning to the school or classroom," Eby said in the statement.
The students have created Facebook pages titled Fight for Fish, and as part of their stand they organized a sit-in protest for Tuesday morning in Fish's classroom.
In preparation for the sit-in, Eby's statement read, "On Tuesday, students will be expected to attend their classes and comport themselves in a respectful manner. We are aware that some students may be planning a 'sit-in' in response to this issue. The administration will handle any disruptions caused by a sit-in through normal procedures and policies."
School board Chairwoman Judy Edwards declined to comment on the matter.
Many students said on social media and in interviews with the Independent Mail that Fish was a tough teacher. He had high expectations for his students, but always encouraged them to do their best and to think critically. Smith remembers one class period when she didn't know what to say in response to a journal prompt. So Fish waited until she found her voice.
"The belief he had in me was amazing," Smith said. "He pushed me. He would say, 'I want to hear what you have to say, Smith.' "
Even students who weren't in Fish's class said they were impacted by him. Kaleb Dicks, a junior at Easley High School, was struggling to make an A in his English class. So one day, he walked into Fish's room and asked him for help.
"He set up meetings with me to make sure I got it," Dicks said. "He's one of the better teachers out there."

And the comments from the kids are jaw-dropping. THIS is the kind of teachers we need more of. The ones who inspire our children and encourage them to think for themselves and outside the box. To think of the consequences of their decisions- for them and for the rest of the world. Don't get rid of these teachers- hire MORE of them!!! Now is not the time to be sheltering our best and brightest when they are about to go out into the big bad world on their own. If hearing the F-word is going to break them- we are doomed.

I sincerely hope this hero gets his job back. Our Children need him....WE need him.



My March Blitz.......
This first week has been  a major success. I started Tuesday, March 1st  and I weighed and measured myself. I'm weighing and measuring every Saturday of March and the Final weigh in will be April 1st.
The Rules:
No added sugar to anything
No bread
Drink 8 Glasses water(at least) daily
Do at least 1 activity  daily.(a walk/yoga/7MWO/ZombiesRun)
Stay within  caloric perimeters.

The week started off great- except for the Krispy Kreme donuts my co worker bought in on Day 1 and ate several of....at the desk next to me. They are my Kriptonite....the smell alone is enough to make me salivate. Literally- not figuratively.  But ,other than that, I got thru it. Day 2 wasn't bad either. Day 3- I was going into withdrawal bad. I had a headache- I was weepy and cranky all at once. But I got thru it. Day 4 was easy. No headaches, no jittery withdrawals, no cravings, I ate my protein and veg and was fine.
This Morning, I got up and weighed and measured. I know most is probablly getting rid of fluids but I dont care- a Loss is a WIN and this week I'm a Loser/Winner!!

I lost a grand total of:
1 inch on my neck
4 inches on my waist
4 inches on my hips
1 inch on my thighs
1/2 inch on my calves
And 11.4 lbs!!!!!!!

The rest of the month won't be nearly as productive in losses, but even a small loss puts me that much closer to my goals.

New Reads.......Have downloaded the Kindle version of Except For His Wings by one of my favorite authors, Michael Dodd. I'm looking forward to reading it this weekend whilst doing my mountain of laundry. There is a HUGE possibility said Mountain o'Laundry will be done tomorrow. ....or a bit at a time next week.
I have my priorities.

So that was my week.  How was yours?




Sunday, February 28, 2016

And Now- The End Is Near....

My vacation faces the final curtain..........This is a bit of a long post....you may want to read it in parts. hahahhahahha....

It's been a truly wonderful 5 days off!!!!

Wednesday:....... Hubby went in to work as usual and I did what I took that day off to do. I BLITZED the house. The ENTIRE house. And it needed it. I hadn't been feeling well the past couple of months and things had piled up and gotten way out of hand. So-First I cleared out the back room of all the cardboard boxes that had accumulated over the past 6 months when I last blitzed the house. Some people do a spring cleaning- I do a Spring Clean AND and Autumn Clean. I do Autumn as well in order to get ready for the holidays, of course.
Anyway, that's another story- and probably one you've heard before, knowing me.
So I took out the boxes and put them in the bathroom in the tub-out of the way for the time being. Then, I moved the round chair I love so much and has now been delegated to the back room comfy-chair and put it on the other side of the room. On the wall where it was I put mine and Paul's small dressers spaced apart so my unused office chair would fit in between them and have plenty of space to swivel. I then took a shelf off a unit we had in the living room(for lack of anywhere else to use it before now) and placed it on top of the two chests in the empty space. I did put a two inch wide strip of the non-slip bathmat stuff under the edges so it wasn't going to accidentally get knocked off during use. I then took my wood framed mirror off the living room wall and put it on the middle section and placed my makeup case in front of it. I used a spare CD tower we had to put all my hair products and deodorants  and body lotions in. Very salon-ish. I have a crystal divided serving tray I have most of my jewelry in at the moment and it and all my framed wedding things went on top of one of the chests, and my small aluminum cases have all my styling tools and hair accessories in them and are stacked on the other chest. I hung clothes up- sorted others out to go to charity shops and then hoovered. This is my dressing table and pics of the room before and after.(In my defense- hubby used the room almost solely, and I rarely went back there.That will now change. I use it daily now.)






Now over to the right of the chest of drawers I put the other half of the unused shelf and I have my shoes under it and my collection of handbags on top of it.
 Its beautiful in there now. And very organized. Just the way I like it. With my new hairstyle  and make-up routine it took me almost two hours to do my hair and makeup every morning with everything spread out all over the house the way it was....but since putting everything together in one place it takes me about 45 mins. MUCH better!!!

Okay well the rest of the day was spent doing much the same thing to the rest of the house so I'll just give you a couple of after pics and go on to the next thing on my list of wonderful things to happen!!!



LOL- one more thing about that day tho....Just as it was time for hubby to walk thru the door from work, I had JUST finished up and sat down thinking that was absolutely PERFECT timing and I was finished......and then I remembered the cardboard boxes were still in the bathroom in the tub and needed to be broken down....so when hubby walked thu the door I was sitting in the middle of the bathroom floor with my scissors out breaking down and folding up and bagging the cardboard to be taken down to the bin.
Paul told me that I really needed to learn the definition of tidying and remodeling. He thinks I'm a bit confused about it all.
He also came in with not one but TWO bouquets of flowers...one red and white and one of Pink roses- Pink Roses are my favorites. And a card. I love my man!!!!!!!

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Thursday:.......Next on my list to tell you about was my actual birthday. Again, Paul went to work as usual and a couple of minutes after he left I got up. I showered made a cup of coffee, and then did my hair and make-up. My friend Lisa came about 11AM and we had a great catch up. We compared make-up and talked about our men and our jobs and then she took me to lunch at Frankie & Benny's where we continued our catch-up. At two o'clock we reluctantly said goodbye, both of us on the verge of tears, and she headed back to St. Helens to see what her boyfriend had planned for her.
My hubby came in at his regular time and cooked for us. As he had done the day before as well, I would like to add. We sat and watched movies together. I also got a lovely card from My In laws with a bit of Birthday dosh in it.......and it was just a fabulous, fabulous day!!!!!!
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Friday:...... Hubby had taken the day off work and we got up early and he took me into St. Helens for a bit of shopping. He picked up a couple of items he needed, and then we went on a bit of a walk about in town centre. I didn't really NEED anything, but as we were walking I suggested we go into B&M because I wanted to see if they had a tri-fold mirror for my vanity-dressing table. I really wanted the mirror back in the living room. I hadn't realized how much I liked having one there until it was gone. So They DID have a tri-fold- but it was just a bit too small for my liking, so instead I found a really lovely brushed silver frame mirror for the living room wall! It's beautiful and looks perfect in it's spot!
Then afterwards, Paul took me out to eat at my favorite place, Frankie & Benny's.  Now, this is why I love it so much. It is very much like Applebee's or Chili's restaurants back home in style and atmosphere. The music is very American- nostalgic for me. The food is also in the Applebee's style and the prices are reasonable.
Afterwards, we went to Tesco and did our weekly shop and then stopped by his parents to pick up a couple of packages and have a little visit with them. Well, with his mum as his dad was at work.
Then we headed back and again, we watched a couple of movies and he made us a light meal for supper.  Fabulous Day!!!!
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Saturday:......... Not much done on Saturday. Hoovered the house....Did a load of laundry. Mostly just watching a bit of tele and relaxing til the evening. Then I played MINE CRAFT and had a bit of a chat with the gaming group until bedtime. We've decided that we're going to start ordering our groceries online and having them delivered on Wednesday or Thursday every week. That way we really do have our weekends free to do- or not do- whatever we please without having to run errands.
So I did get them ordered for delivery.
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That brings us to today..... Nothing planned for today at all except baking my birthday cake. Tomorrow we have our sammich swap at work, and I will be having a last day of ating my bread and having my cake and sweets before my March Blitz. From March 1st  ending April 1st  I've agreed to do a Blitz...no added sugar, no bread, activity of some sort EVERY DAY rain or shine.....Drink my allotted water rations....
You do it as if your life depended on you completing it....or you think of a HUGE payout -realistic or not- that you're working towards. Totally up to you what you choose. I'm thinking of a Phone Call to Heaven to talk to my Clay and my Daddy again. As I said- it doesn't have to be realistic- If only it were tho. If only it were. I also have a lesser reward too that is more realistic. I want a die cast model of my 65 Mustang Hardtop I used to own.  That's my mini reward.
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One last thing....... I've talked to my loved ones all week during my holiday. My Grandson, Devon, age 15, is an avid skateboarder. He has a 4.7 grade average in school - is in the top 10% of his class. Gets good grades, hasn't given his parents sleepless nights...is wanting to go to college and become a veterinarian. He posted a photo of his skateboard yesterday. It's well and truly broken. He's always had secondhand boards since he started boarding. Well, I was moved when I saw that photo. I decided that since I didnt give him a gift this last year for his birthday, I was going to buy him a new skateboard. I asked him on messenger what kind of board he wanted to replace his old one with, and he said he would just get another second hand one probably. But when I pressed him on it he said he really liked the deck of one certain one and I asked him to send me the link so I could see what he was talking about. He did- and with the currency exchange it was only about £35 for just the deck. I went one better and bought it kitted out and sent to him. He deserves it. Hard work and dedication should be rewarded. Don't you think?
Also-
HUGE NEWS!!!!!!!
I am now a Great-Grandmother.
Chloee Leighh Smith
5 lb 9 oz
February 18th, 2016

That's two that just missed my birthday!!! Isn't she just Precious tho?????

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That's it for my big Holiday week!!!!