Sunday, September 29, 2013

I Can See Clearly Now, The Grime Is Gone.......It's Gonna Be a Bright, Bright, Bright Sunshiney Day!

The window cleaner came today. Great Job- and reasonably priced. 
AND they have a repeat customer list- so every two months it gets done automatically!! 


And After:

It doesn't take much to make me happy, does it? 
Clean windows that I didn't have to climb a ladder to do myself!!

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

OMG....I'm totally exhausted!

Flat Stanley Christopher is wearing me out! That child LOVES having his photo taken....and he can out-talk me. I don't mind tho. He's a real blessing. I may not be able to have my loved ones over here, but I can show them a lot of stuff thru Flat Christopher...and who knows, maybe someday they will be able to come over for a visit as well!!!

I'm enjoying every second of this precious time with our little Flat Stanley-Christopher!!! And we have some surprises planned in the coming months for Round Christopher, too!

(Hint-Flat Stanley Christopher found Paul's Tardis!!!!!) :-D

Sunday, September 22, 2013

What A Day....(Rant)...(and REALLY LONG Post)-Just so you know....

Okay, Now that I've calmed down a bit after a nice long sleep, I can talk about it.

This week was a rollercoaster ride for me and yesterday just was the worst day in a LONG time.

At first, it got started in a lovely way. We'll call this UP. I got up early-as usual, made me a cup of coffee and sat down at the computer to do my usual Saturday Morning Routine. FB, blog and generally just sit and chill out relaxing for a couple of hours before beginning the craziness. Like I'm doing now.

I was planning on making a grocery list, looking for some deals on wedding wear and work wear, and looking for a place here that sells kitchen wear before we headed out on our weekly shopping spree.
I say shopping spree- its grocery shopping, and IF we need something else we try and find it. Ha.

Well after 15 minutes, my darling hubby decides to not have his usual lie-in, but to get up and get the day started early. Do we have to? Saturadys and Sundays are our we dont HAVE to et an early start days...why change it unless we have to?

So I was-at that minute- editing some photos, so I asked for about 15 mins so I could finish that task and finish my morning cup of coffee. I finished editing and got about half my coffee down and thought that would be enough to get me woken up, so I went and got dressed. It was a nightmare trying to find a top I was comfortable in. Always a really bad sign.We'll call this Down.

After finally finding an outfit I was comfortable in(UP), I found Paul was at the computer doing something, and wasn't dressed yet(DOWN) so I started to make the grocery list.(UP) This month is national Cancer Awareness Month here and Thursday they are having a National Bake Sale to raise money for Cancer Research and I plan on doing a bit of baking Wed night in honor of my Daddy and my Aunt Della Ruth, so I needed to get all the stuff and if I didnt write out a list I would forget SOMETHING vital. I always do. Halfway thru making the list- hubby has gotten dressed and is ready to go-......I didn't get to finish the list,(DOWN) but I got the main things on it(I think) so I put it in my handbag....and off we go. (UP).....

Well, we head to Haydock, get laughing and I think-Things are going to be okay.(HUGE UP).

So I wanted to go to Matalan because I needed to buy some clothes this week but Paul didn't want to drive that way- he wanted to go into St.Helens Town Square, so I said fine. (I wish I hadn't now). Last week I managed to lose three pair of pants from my work wardrobe. One due to weight loss(UP & DOWN), and two due to a worn out zipper.(DOWN) of those while I was at WORK no less so I also had to find a safety pin whilst trying to get my projects done on time for a boss who was in a budget meeting and needed the data I was doing ASAP- or sooner- and having my computer program crash on me every 42 minutes. (HUGE STRESSFUL DOWN I thought would NEVER end). I also lost two tops- both due to finding tiny holes in them that was completely unrepairable in the area of the shirt they were located. (DOWN) Both shirts were my favorites.
I also had a wedding do I was supposed to be going to last night but missed due to a still slightly swollen foot that wouldn't let me get into a  single pair of dress shoes I own. AND I have lost weight so none of my dresses fit me anymore. I had a good bit of shopping to do.

So- we get into town, we eat brekkie(UP) then head down towards the shops. There's a Street festival and Classic Auto Show in Town Centre!!!! Yay!!..(UP)..Only I have a boat-load of shopping I HAVE to get done and Paul didn't bring his camera. I take mine EVERYWHERE with me. I  thought- I'll let him use my camera and I can go do my shopping while he's getting some good Street Photography done.Win-Win...he's doing something fun- I'm shopping without stressing that he's bored and getting ill. (UP)

So That's what I did.

They didnt have anything at Mark & Spencers,  so I headed down to BHS(British Home Store).After trying on a dozen outfits and crying because those dang mirrors in the dressing rooms make me look 10 times worse than I actually do(HUGE DOWN) I found a pair of pants and two tops that was perfect for just under £30(UP). And the two tops are in my fav colors- a beautiful short sleeved accordion pleat shirt in Christmas red and a long sleeved button up blouse in Electric Blue......PLUS, they had their Vintage Christmas cards out already and discounted on sale so I got a couple boxes of them. Clothes sorted-Christmas Cards sorted. Yay!! (UP)

I wasn't able to find shoes for the wedding because my foot is still swollen, so there was no point in even looking for a dress at that point. I was soooooo looking forward to going to that After-do and dancing. I haven't been dancing but ONCE since getting here and I LOVE to dance. Prob not a really good idea with a not quite totally healed and still slightly swollen foot anyway, but I realy hated missing the celebration because Andy is one of my very favorite workmates.(DOWN)

Anyway, I got to the registar put my card in to pay for the stuff and my phone started ringing. It was hubby wanting to know if I was about finished and letting me know where he was at. I told him I would be there in about 5 mins, that I was at the registar paying now, and hung up. I took my bag of goodies and went to find him feeling all kinds of happy that it was a pretty good day after all(UP)-even after crying.

We walked thru the cars at the car show but I didn't have time to take any photos myself.(DOWN) I had made a hair appointment at the salon for 1PM so I could pretty much go straight home from the salon  to get dressed and go to Andy and Sandra's wedding after-do...which wasn't happening but I was still getting my hair done.(UP) It was way too long and annoying.

So we left and Paul dropped me at the salon on the way to his parents house. I had a right nice chat with the girls at the salon while Allison was cutting and styling my hair. It's lovely to be pampered once in a while!!!(HUGE UP)

Then it was time to pay.............and I couldn't find my debit card.
I took everything out of my bag, went thru my wallet, it just wasnt there. Then I rememebered I had taken Paul's game out of my purse  before getting out of the car to come into the salon.It must have dropped out of my bag onto the floor of the car. Allison said not to worry- I could drop back by and pay before heading back to Manchester. (UP)So I walked to the in-laws and looked in the car. Still nowhere to be found.I thought maybe Paul had seen it and picked it up. Went in- he hadnt. He's upset now- I'm upset AND crying-AGAIN-(HUGE DOWN)this is the 4th time it's happened to me in 10 years.
He calls the bank and cancels the card and re-orders a new one for me. Takes 14 days to get a new one delivered.(OMG HUGE DOOOOOOOOWN).

We leave. He stops by the salon to pay Allison for my visit, and we head to TESCO to get groceries. By this time I'm so upset I couldn't care less if we even get groceries- I just want to go home. But it has to be done, so in we go. Paul looks thru the gadgets while I quickly gather the stuff we need. In the search for the card, I have also lost the damn grocery list I wrote out and needed for the bake sale stuff, but I don't care. I just buy the stuff and we go. I think I got almost everything I needed to make the cakes. If not, then, oh well.

But- while I'm in there, I remembered I needed a salt shaker. One is not to be found. I have been looking EVERYWHERE for a simple salt and pepper shaker since I GOT to England. It's one of the things I had a t home but thought, no point in bringing when I can just get a set when we get our place. HA. These people don't have them. Everywhere you turn you find Salt and pepper GRINDERS/Mills. I don't WANT those. I HAVE those for sea salt and peppercorns. Really nice if you want delicately seasoned stuff. I like REAL, finely ground, TABLE salt. The kind you can't put in a grinder because it would all fall out. I like having a shaker to use in my kitchen. I don't care about a Pepper shaker- I LOVE freshly ground pepper from a pepper mill....but I want, I NEED, a plain salt shaker.
None to be found. (DOWN)

Anyway, so neither of us are saying much on the way home. I'm thinking what an idiot I am and feeling dumber than a box of rocks......and then I pick up the phone and call BHS and ask if they have my card since I didn't actually REMEMBER putting it into my wallet. I remembered putting my PHONE back into my handbag and then getting my clothes in the shopping bag, but I don't actually remember putting my card back in my wallet after paying.
Yep- they have it there. Damn.(DOWN)
I ask them to shred it as we have cancelled it already.
At least we know we don't have to worry about anyone emptying out the bank account with it.(UP)

So we get home, get the groceries put up and I go out to check if we have mail. We did.

Flat Stanley-Christopher had arrived!!!!!(HUGE UP!!!)
He even brought me a hug from Christopher!!!(EVEN HUGER UP)!!!! I introduced him to Paul and then I showed Flat Stanley-Christopher around our apartment. We took some photos of us together- and I took a couple of him by himself -and then I set up a blog for him, like Michael did for Flat Matthew when he visited him and Tom a while back. Flat Stanley-Christopher thought it was all terribly interesting. He was a little tired after all the traveling he did, so we all called it a night and went to bed.(UP)

So- today is another day.
It's Sunday- It's gotta get better than the last week has been. Flat Stanley-Christopher and I have a LOT of things to do today-starting with brekkie and coffee. He's just woken up and is hungry-as am I- so we're off to make a Full English for him on his first morning here!!!!(UP)

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Flat Stanley-Christopher Has Arrived In England!!!

Flat Stanley-Christopher has arrived in Manchester England!!!
To read more about his Adventure....

Saturday, September 14, 2013

We're Having a Visitor From AMERICA!!!!

I'm SOOOOOOO excited!!!
My sweet Grandson, Christopher, is sending me his friend- Flat Stanley!!! I'm expecting Stanley to arrive around next Friday and he will be here for a few days. I'm so excited to have him as a guest!!
I've been thinking about where to go and what to show him while he's here...and there will be lots of photos taken of everything we do as well as a journal for him to share with Christopher when he gets back home in South Carolina!!!
I'm thinking if he gets here before Friday, he can go to work with me and Paul and meet all the people we work with. Have a few Photos taken there with the office-mates  here in Manchester, England.
Then- Saturday he can go to Tesco food shopping with us. Again, more photos.....
Then Saturday afternoon or Sunday I was thinking we could take him on a Photo walk- to the Northenden Park if it's just me- or maybe to Didsbury Village if it's me AND Paul and we could have lunch at a sidewalk cafe or a pub  and get some street photography in as well. Let Stanley taste a little of the local flavors.
Then Stanley could have a day chilling and relaxing at home while Paul and I are at work before going to the post office to see him off on his trip back to South Carolina to share his adventure with Christopher and his classmates at school.
What an awesome idea his teacher had for learning world geography!!!!!!!
Thank you Christopher for sharing your friend Flat Stanley with me and Poppi Paul!!!!

Thursday, September 05, 2013

This & That......

I've been so out of sorts lately. Not being able to be out and about, mobile, like I'm used to. Despite that, tho- I'm losing some more weight with the help of my diet buddy at work- Leanne.  And despite not being very mobile I've still managed to get some photography done every week/weekend to put on my blog. I haven't entered the photography competition in a couple of months- I just haven't had the interest to do the challenges in the topics he's chosen. Maybe next month. Septembers is community and we just might happen upon something I could use for an entry.

I've been depressed off and on for the past month or so- no big surprise there either. Clay's angelversary was August 26th- and my Dad's is September 24th. So they've been on my mind a lot too. It hasn't helped that Paul and I have been watching the series FRINGE and we watched the final episode on Monday. It was sad- the central characters are a father and son(along with a female lead but she didnt really figure in my equasion) and altho it didn't upset me terribly while I was watching it, when I went to bed that night I just began sobbing and shaking uncontrollably. Poor hubby knows this time of year is an emotional one for me- and I do just burst into tears at odd times- and as usual, he gathered me into his arms and comforted me until I began to calm and settle down enough to sleep. Bless him, he has always been my rock and I absolutely worship the very ground he walks on.

Also-I've been stationed downstairs in my hubby's department at work during my time of disability(I know y'all are probably sick to death of hearing about my stupid broken foot and believe me- I cannot WAIT to move on to something else come Saturday!!!) and tomorrow(Friday) is going to be my final day stationed down there. I really am going to miss the camaraderie down there with that group. They've all been so nice and really made me feel a part of the group- and sometimes making me feel at home and comfortable with a group of people is not the easiest thing to do, but they somehow managed it in the 5 short weeks I've been down there with them. I know there will probably be more tears tomorrow when it's time to leave. I'm going to take my camera(as usual) and try and get a group photo so I can put it up in my cubicle upstairs as a memento of my time with those sweet people.

Our trip home was tentatively planned for Thanksgiving time.......but has had to be postponed until around February or March. We got looking at flights and prices for them and it was going to take every bit of our savings to get flights for us during the holidays.So, we decided to save for a few more months and then get the less expensive flights after the holiday rush- and still have some emergency funds to put back for a rainy day.
My daughter and mom aren't exactly thrilled with the change, but as adults, they understand why we decided to do what we did.
Maybe someday in the future they will be able to work it out to come over to visit us.

So.....speaking of the holidays..........It's cooling off here and the trees are getting a bit more color to them every day. I can't wait. I absolutely adore Autumn. You would think I would love Winter as much as I love Christmas- but I don't. I do love the holiday, but for me, Autumn is the epitome of seasonal perfection. Not too warm, not too cold, no really nasty weather. Just  lovely smells and colors bursting everywhere you turn. My house always smells of Apples and cinnamon and smoke(the good wood-burning fireplace kind- not ciggies). I love being able to wear cardigans and sweater dresses and turtlenecks and jeans and boots and long skirts and leggings scarves and hats and fluffy fuzzy flannel pajamas.  Not  to forget drinking spiced cider and hot cocoa and toasting marshmallows over a bonfire on crisp autumn evenings. Long walks in the evenings or on the weekends just to drink in the beauty of this beautiful world we live in. Raking leaves..........and jumping in them and scattering them all over just to have to rake them up all over again.

Yes...I AM a child at heart, and I pray I never grow up and become so bitter and jaded that I forget to see the beauty I enjoy now.