Thursday, December 31, 2009


One of the things I used to enjoy doing was baking. I haven`t done much for a number of years now, for various reasons, but recently I`ve felt inclined to again - and here is the result of this afternoon`s batch of baking.

It was the perfect way to spend a cold dull winter afternoon.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Where did 40 years go?

Where have the last 40 years gone?   Realising, as I wrote yesterday, that I`d been working in the same place for that number of years, has set me thinking about my life.

It`s a frightening thought to realise that those years have gone by as quick at that [clicking my fingers].  It doesn`t seem anywhere like as long.  And, even more scary is to realise that over half my life has gone - well, unless I live to be 112 !

What have I achieved in that time?  
Not a lot really.  I still live in the house I was brought into as a baby.  I`m still single.  In fact have never had a boyfriend.  I`ve only worked at one place (disregarding school holiday jobs) - although I have worked up from being on the shop floor, to being on the check-out, then on to the cash office, and now finally to the head office.  Leaving school early, I lost touch with my friends from those days, and haven`t a close best friend, in the way lots of people seem to have, and, actually thinking about it I guess that my Church family are the closest I have to friends, although the vast majority of them are a lot older than me.
I`ve not travelled outside this country (but have no desire to), nor really far in the UK.  I think one of the best things I did was learning to learn to drive about 14 years ago.  That has made quite a difference to me.

But, am I contented with my life.  

At the moment - YES!


On this day, the twenty ninth of December in the year nineteen sixty eight, I walked for the first time as a very young employee nervously and apprehenively into the retail establishment where I was to work.   It was in my home town and only a short walk from my house. 

I was greeted by the manager, Mr. C.....  a fairly elderly (or at least elderly to me) gentleman, and introduced to the other staff.   Yes, in those days managers were shown respect and call Mr. ....  and not by their first names.  It would have been unthinkable to call him Jack.  In all the years that I worked there with him, no-one ever called him by his Christian name.

We worked from 9 a.m. - 5.30, closed for an hour from 1-2 for lunch and at 1 p.m. on Wednesdays as it was half-day closing in the town.  A 41 hour week.  Everyone started and finished at the same time.  There were no different shifts, as today.  And, ofcourse definitely not open on a Sunday!

Now, 40 years on, I am still working in the same building in the same business.    What changes I have seen in that time though!  Some for the better and many not.   During these years I have seen at least 9 different managers come and go.   Some through retirement, some moved to other branches, one for dishonesty, another `asked to leave`, and so on.   The business has been owned by at least 6 different companies at various times through those years too.

I can`t say that all the time has been happy, most of it has, but there have been times and with certain managers when I have seriously felt like walking out and not coming back.    But, I stuck it, and in the end the manager/s went before I did! 

There have been amusing incidents with staff and customers,  sad ones too, as someone once remarked, we really should write a book about life in a store.   Maybe I`ll share a few of those on here in the coming weeks.   (it will give me something to blog about!)

Little did I know that when I walked in the door in 1969, that I would still be there 40 years later.

One thing I do know for sure, ........ I shan`t be there in another 40 years time!........ well, unless the government raises the retirement age!!!

Monday, December 28, 2009

Lucky Numbers

Having commented on Z`s blog the other day about a box of chocolates I remember from childhood and which used to be a favourite of ours, but which few people, if any, seem to remember I thought I`d see if I could find any info on them on Google.   Just to be sure that I wasn`t dreaming them up!   Although I well remember the delicious No. 6 (or 9 if you turn it the other way round), it was a round domed chocolate with a gorgeous soft caramel filling.  Yummy - my favourite out of the box.

So, I typed in Cadbury`s Lucky Numbers and here`s what I came up with

Lucky Numbers

In 1958 Cadbury launched a new assortment of chewy sweets, some covered in chocolate and some not. These Lucky Numbers each had an individual number on the wrapper, hence the name. The brand was retired in 1968

and even a site had the tv advert words for them

Cadbury’s Lucky Numbers: Late 1950s
Lucky Numbers, Lucky Numbers — chocolate and chew.
I’ll be lucky, you’ll be lucky … they’ll be lucky too!

and then -
I came across this one, with memories of all kinds of sweets and treats - what memories that stirred up!

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Finding Peace

So, Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and Boxing Day (wonder why we call it that), have come and gone for another year. 

I sat pondering last night over what had been my favourite part of those three days, this year.   
Was it .....

.....the delicious roast goose, which despite my uncertainty over whether it was cooked, or whether it was going to be tough, was cooked perfectly and very tender.

......or opening my presents - lots and lots of toiletries this year, plus a nice cheque from my Mum as she was unable to go shopping on her own without me.

....or spending time with my Mum

....or  enjoying having the day off from work on Christmas Eve and being able to make mince pies and other items.

....or the Christingle service, the Sunday before,  or the morning one on Christmas Day.

No - none of these, although I had enjoyed all of them.   

The best part of Christmas to me was..... coming home from the Midnight Communion service, and sitting in the dark in my front room at 1a.m. in the morning, the curtains open and with just the light of the streetlight outside giving slight illumination to the room and the Christmas Tree, and in the absolute quiteness and stillness thinking about the wonderful service we`d had, of what Christmas was really all about and feeling an immensely deep sense of peace. 

Friday, December 25, 2009



Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Christmas or Easter??

I couldn`t believe my eyes at work this week.

Invoices and charges for a recent delivery of Easter Eggs - no, not from earlier this year, but for 2010  !

Can`t we even get past Christmas now, before the shops start stocking and selling Easter eggs?  
Do they want us to buy Easter eggs to give as Christmas Presents??

What is commerce and business coming to?

Monday, December 21, 2009

A Wintry morning

We`ve had more snow here these last few days than I have seen for many years.  It started on Friday and we had quite a covering that day, which didn`t melt much before more fell in the evening and overnight.  The temperatures kept low and by 4p.m on Saturday it was already freezing, so again not a lot of thaw that day.  Sunday was another repeat of Saturday. 

 I was very apprehensive walking to work at 7.30 this morning, it was icy, but the snow was frozen so was crunchy underfoot and felt to give a bit more grip, and I got to work safely.  I stopped once or twice on my way this morning to take some photos of the scene.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Christmas tree

I`ve been doing one of my favourite part of Christmas preparations.    Putting up my Christmas Tree.  The decorations are a mixture of old and new items.  Many going back 50 or more years.   Some new, as each year I tend to buy one new item to join the others.

Here it is.

The star on the top, is one my Dad made, it`s just kitchen foil covering a piece of cardboard and fixed on with a thin wire - but I wouldn`t swap it for anything.   I can still picture him sitting drawing with a compass to get the perfect 5 pointed star, carefully cutting it out and making it for me.  

Wednesday, December 16, 2009


Singing Christmas carols by candlelight, I always feel is very special somehow with the atmosphere it creates, and last night was no exception.   At the end of the Carols by Candlelight at our church last night, I just had to take a picture of these candles glowing on our communion table.     But a photo can`t really do justice to them.

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

A radio star?!

I got pounced upon this morning.

No, don`t get alarmed, not literally. 

From where I work, I have to during the course of the day, come out of my office front door onto the pavement to go into the adjoining part of our premises.   Ok, in nice weather, not so good if its raining - but I digress.  This morning I opened the door, stepped down the step onto the pavement and a man dashed up to me.  He had something in his hand, and I assumed he was going to ask directions.

But, no.  What he had in his hand was a microphone and small recorder.   I`m from Radio North Norfolk he said, would you say a short piece of  who you are/where you are and greetings/ christmas wishes / etc to anyone you like for our spot on the show on Saturday morning. 

I stood there totally taken aback by it.

But, I found myself agreeing and the mircophone was held in front of me - talk about having to think quickly!  Still I managed to utter something and he seemed happy with it.   It will be on, on Saturday morning he said. 

I didn`t think to ask what time.   So now, I ponder do I listen all morning or am I better not to hear whatever it was I gabbled off?

Sunday, December 06, 2009

Christmas Trees

I went to see a Christmas Tree Festival at Fakenham this afternoon, so thought I`d share a few photos of it with you.
The Church was totally filled with 75 trees.  All decorated differently.   Some had professional decorations, others had handmade ones.  It was a real sight to behold.

Each of the trees was in aid of a different charity and each had a collecting bucket alongside it, for their particular cause.  And during the week of the Festival several thousand pounds are given - people are so generous.

It was a very moving experience, reading the information and seeing all the many, many different charities, both local, national and for aid overseas.   These ofcourse just a fraction of how much need there is in our country and world.

At the very front of the church were 4 huge Prayer trees.  Visitors to the festival were able to write any prayer requests they wished on gold stars and hang them on the trees.  To see the way in which the four trees had been filled in just three days was very emotional.  To think that so many people who had been into the church had prayer needs, or wished to pray for people and situations they knew, made me feel very humble.

It was a very inspiring and moving afternoon.

Friday, December 04, 2009


Walking to work yesterday morning something strange happened.

It was a dark morning, well, it is after all 7.25 a.m. when I set off, and a rainy day.   As I walked along the road it suddenly went darker, and I realised that the street light I had reached had gone off just as I got to it.  I continued walking and as I got to the next street light, that too went off.  Another few steps along the road - and - yes, the same thing happened again.    As I got to each street light it went off.

Now - was that just coincidence - or was I putting a jinx on them by walking past them?!!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009


It`s my birthday today, and last night I had a lovely and very unexpected visit from our minister - bringing me a beautiful bunch of pink and white flowers and cards for my birthday, signed by lots of the church members.  It really made my evening.   It was such a total surprise.

My mum has bought me a nice new flat screen television to replace my old style heavy clumsy one in my living room and that arrived yesterday afternoon.  It wasn`t a surprise gift in the way that the flowers were, as I`d gone and chosen and ordered it, but I`m delighted with it, and it`s made the room which I had decorated earlier this year, now look really nice and modern.   And what a difference it makes now looking at a 22inch wide screen as against my old 14 inch square one. 

So, I wait now to see how many cards the postman may drop through my letter box later today. 

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Flowery me

For want of something to do today, I idly tried this "What flower are you" and came up with this result.

I am a

"When your friends think smile, they think of you. There is not a day that goes by that you can't find something good about the world and your fellow human."

I`m not sure how true that is.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Bird feeding


I had some bread to spare, the sun was shining this afternoon, so I got into car and drove a few miles along the coast to feed some ducks. And, ofcourse took my camera to try and get some interesting shots.

As you can see, as well as the ducks I had the seagulls flocking in.   It`s amazing how they seem to know when there`s food about, even if they`re nowhere in sight to start with.   Guess they must post one as a lookout somewhere! 

I even got the seagulls flying to take bread out of my hand before I`d had a chance to throw it to them.  Just wish I`d had someone else with me who could have taken a photo of that.   I found it difficult trying to use a camera with one hand and feed them with the other!

And, out of all the photos I took, this one (although it could have been a bit sharper) is my favourite.  It appears that one is giving another a piggy-back!    [click on it to get a full size one]

Monday, November 16, 2009

Free texts etc.

I`m always annoyed by all these adverts on the television and in newspapers and magazines that keep advertising "free texts" or "free internet" etc on mobile phones.


Not because I want them and can`t get them, but because how can something that you have to pay so much a month for regularly be "free"?!!!   

Monday, November 09, 2009

Blogger bugs?

I think some of these bloggers have been passing their bugs on...... 
I`m sitting here this morning, having had to take a day off work, sneezing my head off, with a sore throat, having hot turns, and feeling a bit sorry for myself.

Still, I shouldn`t complain really, it`s over a year since I had a cold, or flu or whatever it is, I just could have done without it this week, when I`ve things I need to do.

I rang my boss earlier this morning to say I wouldn`t be able to be in.  He said he could hear that I was `bunged up`, and asked if there was anything I needed, as he would get it and drop it in for me, or if I thought of anything during the day that I needed to give him a ring.    I thought that was really kind and considerate of him.    Wonder how many other bosses would do that?

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Confusing offer

I`m confused!   Ok, I know it doesn`t take a lot to do that - but I saw this coupon in a magazine and can`t quite puzzle it out..........  if something has £1 off, how is it a saving of 95p only?   Any suggestions?

Sunday, November 01, 2009

All Saints Day

Today is All Saint`s Day, and, it`s also the day which is/was my Dad`s birthday.

Our church holds a Special service most years on or around All Saint`s Day, as a time of remembering our loved ones who have died.   So, today with both dates falling on the Sunday I found it a very significant time.

 As we all arrived this evening we were given a stone.  The service was based on an Iona style one, and had lots of periods of quiet when we could think about our loved ones and remember them.   I found this year that I was remembering lots of the happy times, times of things I had shared doing with my Dad, rather than thinking about his illness and the last few months of his life.  I had taken with me a small photo of him, which I put inside my hymn book - the book which was his and which his hands had held so many times.  He has somehow felt quite close to me today.

During the service we brought our stones to the front and placed them in front of the cross to make a cairn and later tea-lights were placed amongst and on the stones.   These we then came forward and lit in remembrance of our loved ones.    It was a very moving and meaningful service.

Friday, October 30, 2009

Golden Autumn

Going to pick my Mum up this afternoon, I just had to stop and take pictures of some of the autumn trees around where she lives. (No this isn`t her home, its the local village shop)

What wonderful shades of orange and gold there are this year, It really is a beautiful world we live in, if we take time to stop and look, and I find that always having my camera with me when I go out makes me do that.

I know that this photo has the sun in the corner of the camera, but on seeing it on the screen I rather like the effect it has created, so have not discarded it.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Boring old Me!

For want of something to blog about, I was going to post some autumn colour pictures I`d taken in the country lanes of Norfolk, but as another blogger had done that on the same day, I didn`t want him to think I was copying him, I`ve "run with this" from Dave`s blog. Will show you the pictures another day.

1. Is there anybody you just wish would fall off the planet? All those wasting money in space exploration.

2. Most exciting thing you've done? Exciting ? Me?..... you must be joking!

3. Do you wear your seatbelt in the car? Yes

4. Right or left handed? Right

5. Name one thing you worry about running out of. Time

6. What famous person do other people think you resemble? No-one as far as I know

7. What is your favourite pizza topping? Don`t eat pizza

8. Do you crack your knuckles? No.

9. What song do you hate the most? All loud noisy pop songs

10. Did just mentioning that song make it get stuck in your head? Didn`t have a particular one, so no.

11. What are your super powers? I don`t think I was issued with any!

12. Peppermint or spearmint? Peppermint

13. Where are your car keys? In my handbag

14. Last song you listened to? "Any dream will do" (from the musical Joseph, on CD)

15. What's your most annoying habit? Not sure - you`d need to ask other people that to find out

16. Where did you last go on holiday? Blackpool (2 years ago)

17. What is your best physical feature? Probably my hands

18. What CD is closest to you right now? Joseph

19. What 3 things can always be found in your refrigerator? Milk, Cheese, Eggs

20. Wine or beer? Neither.

21. What colour are your bed sheets? Blue

22. Would you rather be a fish or a bird? Bird

23. Last thing you broke? A glass which I was washing up and it caught the edge of the tap

24. What are you having to eat tonight? Jacket potato and sliced tongue

25. What colour shirt are you wearing? Dusky Green blouse

26. If you could be doing anything else today, what would you rather be doing? Walking along a beach

27. Do security cameras make you nervous? No. I`m not doing wrong, so why should they?

28. If you wrote a book about your life, what would the title be? Me! - there`s nothing interesting to write about my life.

29. Last time you went to a cemetery? A fortnight ago to take flowers to my Dad`s grave

30. Last concert you went to? Have never been to one

31. Favourite musician(s)/bands you've seen in concert? None

32. Next concert you're planning to attend? None

33. Do you talk to yourself? Yes.

34. Have you ever adopted or purchased a pet? Yes, a canary

35. Have you ever been present when an animal is being born? No

So now you know a few more facts about me - not very interesting is it?!

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Brain Dead!

My mind has been completely blank this week - hence no posts on here. Strange isn`t it how some weeks lots of ideas come flooding into the the mind, or I see or hear something that gives me an idea, or else my camera comes out and captures and interesting or pretty scene. But, this week absolutely nothing.

I`ll try to do better next week!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Autumn flowers

I had to do a floral arrangement at our church this weekend, so chose to use my favourite flowers for this time of year - bloom Chrysanthemums in autumn red and gold colours, and couldn`t resist taking pictures of these beautiful blooms.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

It`s Chocolate Time

Do you know what this week is?

I didn`t until I was listening to the radio this morning

Iit`s National Chocolate Week.

Gosh, how could I have missed that fact?! Yet, the shops around here don`t seem to be promoting it, I wonder why not.

I like chocolate - yet, I`m not one of those people who once they open a box of chocolates or start a bar of it, have to eat the whole lot in one go. I`ll have a couple out of the box, or a couple or three squares off a bar and then put it away until the next evening. I suppose it was how I was brought up.

I remember as a child having a "Sweet Tin" in the drawer of the sideboard and just being allowed one or two out of it at a time. How different to the way children now-a-days are given the whole tube of Smarties, bag of chocolate buttons, or pack or bar of whatever it is. Mine went straight in the tin and even with Smarties or chocolate buttons, I was only given 3 or 4 at a time, or a square or two broken off a bar of chocolate and given me and the rest kept for another day. And I wasn`t allowed to help myself, I had to wait to be given them.

Wonder if other readers were brought up the same way?

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Spring in Autumn

I`ve got some nice pink flowers in my garden at the moment, so thought I`d share them with you. They`re one of those types of flowers where if you look at a single flower, it doesn`t look much on its own, but the stem has 3 or 4 on, which looks better, but when you see them all together they`re really beautiful.

I always think they`re an unusual colour for this time of year when most flowers are reds and golds, these look more like spring in autumn, and are really cheery on a grey damp day.

Wednesday, October 07, 2009

False Econony?

So, the government are thinking of raising the retiring age, again, to 66.

Firstly, I wonder if this will apply fairly to ALL people and jobs - what about those civil servants, teachers etc, who seem to be able to retire at 55 or so now? Will they be made to work until they`re 66?

But, my main thinking is - if all those in work have to stay on for longer, there will be even less jobs for the young people as they leave school, college or university - so what about them?

They`ll be needing to claim all sorts of allowances for being Jobseeking, needing housing etc....etc.... So, why not let those who have done their years of work retire and have their retirement to enjoy, and make room in jobs for younger people to have their opportunity to be employed and work.

There`s only so many jobs around and so many people to be employed or not in employment. Either way the government has to pay out money to either old or young. It surely makes more sense to employ the young and let them gain skills, and give them a purpose in life?

Tuesday, October 06, 2009


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The other day, we went for an hours drive to see a Flower Festival at the Methodist Church at Acle - and it was well worth the visit, as you can see by this marvellous floral arrangement depicting Pentecost, just one of the beautiful arrangements they had in a modern light church.

Sunday, October 04, 2009

A field of golden.....

It was a beautiful autumn day, the sun was shining, the leaves on the trees turning golden and bronze and even red on some species. So off we went for a ride into the country lanes to enjoy the beauty of it all, stopping once or twice on the way to collect some conkers, to try out the theory that conkers placed in the corners of ones home would keep spiders at bay. (I`ll report later if that worked!)

On our trip we saw this lovely sight of sunflowers and I just had to stop, get out with my camera to capture them.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Mystery in the Garden

Looking out of my living room window as I opened the curtains this morning, I spotted a round green object on the lawn.

I at first took it to be an apple, but yet, where had it come from, I`ve no apple trees in the garden and neither has my neighbour, and even if there had been wind it would have surely been too heavy to have come from far.

My next thought was that it was probably a small tennis ball, but yet again, where could it have come from.

On going out to investigate, it turned out to be a green tomato ! - but the mystery still remains - where has it come from? I`ve no tomato plants in the garden, and haven`t bought any. Has it dropped in from a passing plane, or helicopter?

Or, has Dave thrown one of his tomatoes which haven`t ripened, over to here?!!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Lucy Locket

Lucy Locket lost her pocket....... or so the nursery rhyme goes.

And, it struck me today, that we too have lost our pockets.

Why is it that ladieswear, especially skirts no longer have pockets in them. Where are we expected to put our hankies (or tissues)?

Men`s trousers all have pockets in them, and so it seems do many of their shirts - so why, oh why don`t the designers of ladies wear realise that we too need pockets to put our items in?

And, no, don`t tell me to wear trousers to solve the problem!

Friday, September 18, 2009

Biting my tongue!

On leaving work this morning I had a few minutes to spare before I had to be somewhere else, so looking in our local Building Society and seeing only one person at the counter, I thought, yes I`ve time to just go in there.

All I needed to do was pay one cheque in.

So, in I went and stood at the head of the queue section by the barrier. and I stood...... and stood..... and stood.....and........ The person at the counter had obviously completed her business as she was putting items into her handbag. But the cashier keep asking her questions - "have you got home insurance?`, "do you need information about insurance with us?" "do you want another savings account?......." and so it went on. The woman didn`t seem a bit interested but kept saying that her husband dealt with that. This then encouraged the cashier to go to find some leaflets to give her. By then I`d stood there about 10 minutes. Looking at my watch, gritting my teeth in frustration, at the time it was taking for me to do a simple job. There was no other partition open.

Eventually, the woman went, and I got to the counter to pay in my one cheque. That done - in just a minute - the cashier straight away asked me "have you got personal insurance cover?!" To which I replied a hasty "Yes, thanks. Bye" (I don`t think I have, but I wasn`t going to stop for her to try and sell me some, nor anything else) and turned and left the counter.

How I`d love to have said to her - "I wish you wouldn`t waste peoples time, by asking them all this, but just get on and do the job they came in for." - but, being me, I didn`t. I just seethed inside.

I wondered afterward what her reaction would be, if the next time she stood with one item in a Supermarket queue, the girls on checkout stopped to ask every customer "do you need any bread? and milk? any meat? did you know we`ve got a special offer on cheese its buy one of a certain brand, get another free. etc.....etc......." !!!!

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Time to Bake

It was great being able to finish work at lunch time yesterday and have the afternoon to myself.

I did something I`ve not done for years!

On my way home from work, I went into the butchers (no - nothing unusual in that), and bought some sausagemeat.

After I`d had my dinner, I got out my mixing bowl, flour, lard, some water, a knife and made some pastry. I can`t remember the last time I made pastry. Then out came the rolling pin and board and a baking tin. I lined the tin with the pastry, put in the sausagemeat, rolled out another piece of pastry and put that on top. Popped it in the oven and a bit later out came a golden brown sausagemeat patty - duly consumed (or part of it) for my tea. And it was absolutely delicious.

What to do with the little bit of pastry left over from the patty, I wondered.
Then a memory from childhood struck me. I rolled out the pasty quite thin, got out the jar of Marmite, and spread some thinly over the pastry. Folded the pastry over twice, rolled it slightly flatter, then cut it into fingers. Into the oven with them, and 10 minutes later out came tasty Marmite fingers.
What had brought that inspirational memory back to me, I`ve no idea - but I`m glad it did.

It was so good to have time to do things like this.
I know I`m going to enjoy my shorter hours.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Free Hours

It was back to work for me yesterday, after a weeks holiday, and the start of my shorter working week. So now its a case of working out how to best work my hours to make the most of my extra eight "free" hours.

Should I start a bit later each day? -
That could be quite nice now that these mornings are getting darker. But, No, I don`t think I`d gain much by that, because I`d probably get up a bit later. so wouldn`t actually gain any free time at home to do thing in.

Should I do a day less a week? -
It would be nice to have another whole day to myself. But, that would mean I`d get less days holiday entitlement of Bank holidays than I currently do - so maybe that`s not the solution, and it also could be difficult because of one of the new extra jobs I`ve now got at work needs to be done daily.

Should I finish earlier each day?
It would be good to finish work lunch time on three days and have the afternoons "free" - Yes, I think that`s the answer.

I`m lucky that I can be flexible in the hours I work each day, according to the work that needs to be done, and my hours don`t affect anyone else. I think - No, not I think, I Know - I`m going to enjoy having more free time to do some cooking, baking, and hobbies as well as housework and visiting my mother.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Sitting Pretty

Sitting with my mother looking at the sea in the sunshine yesterday afternoon, my attention was drawn to the shrubs in front of us, where a group of sparrows were twittering and jumping about about pecking away at what must have been seed heads on the plants, and really enjoying the feast they had found, so I couldn`t resist getting my camera out to try and capture them. This one obligingly posed for me!

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Little Cuties!

Aren`t they cute!

We went for a ride into the countryside to feed some ducks on a village pond last Sunday and found these sweet little ducklings. I just had to get my camera out!

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Money or Happiness?

I see, that somehow it`s over 14 days since I wrote a post.

Where has that time gone to? I didn`t realise it was so long.

I`ve been struggling over a bit of uncertainty in my working life during the last weeks, so maybe I`ve been so preoccupied with that, that I`d omitted to write on here.

The uncertainty is being caused by a combination of factors - the two partners I work for are halving the work of the business between them, so instead of work from 4 places coming into me at the Head office, only work from two outlets will now come to me; then, a new Sainsbury`s store is shortly to open a few doors away from where I work which will no doubt take some of our trade away, and that combined with the recession will mean that our Directors have to cut back on staff wages and hours.

The options given to me were to go back into the store cash office, the delicatessen counter (no way!!), or on to shop floor work for part of my contracted working hours, or to cut my hours, although, to be fair to P, he didn`t actually say that just hinted at it, but knew that I really needed to keep my 33 hours a week. But, as I hadn`t anyhere near enough work to fill all my hours in HO I had to decide what to do. I suggested that some of the store paperwork/computer work be transferred to me upstairs which would then relive the staff in the store, which P thought possible - but there still wouldn`t be enough to fill all my hours.

No way did I want to go back into the store. Now, don`t get me wrong, it wasn`t the Position that made me feel like that, it was simply that having done 37.5 years in the store, I just didn`t want to go back to it. I didn`t want the responsibility of the cash work again, and I certainly didn`t want to work in the shop because the taped music - or so called music, I call it a horrible din - absolutely puts me on edge and makes me very snappy, so I knew I couldn`t stick that every day for hours on end.

It was a real dilemna.

Which was more important - money or happiness?

On my request he worked out for me what my take-home wage would be if I cut my hours to 25 or 20 hours a week. I then worked out my average weekly household/living expenses, and came to the conclusion that I could manage on a bit less each week. It would mean saving less - but it would be worth it to be happy in my work.

I eventually made the decision, which P was happy with, and I start working 25 hours a week (still in HO, with the store paperwork coming up to me) in a fortnight`s time after I`ve had a weeks holiday.

Maybe then, my Blog will be written more regularly, as I`ll have more time!!

Friday, August 14, 2009

Levitation ?

On my work each day I`ve been passing a little workman`s van. Nothing unusual in that you may think, but its the wording on the side which intrigues me and sents my imagination off.

It says....

Ladderless cleaning solutions.

Now that conjures up all kinds of pictures in my mind....

does the chap ...."walk" up walls like a fly would?

or.............. use a hot air balloon?

or............. absail on a rope?

or............. use varying heights to stilts to make himself tall enough?

or............. does he float in mid air through levitation??

I`m really puzzled.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Harvest time!

These last few days, I`ve been busy each day harvesting my crop of runner beans - my favourite vegetable, so I thought I`d share some with you here. Out of habit of what my Dad used to do, I weigh each picking. This was the first one, and as you can see there`s about 9 ounces, since then the quantity has increased each time, and yesterday I got over 2 pounds of them...... so..... it`s beans, beans, beans!

I did also plant carrot and beetroot seeds earlier in the year, but the weeds grew quicker than the seeds, so I couldn`t pull the weeds up when they were small, as they would have uprooted the baby vegetable seedlings at the same time -but now, I can`t find the rows of carrots and beetroot for all the weeds! I`ll just have to pull some handfuls of whatever is there and hope for the best!!

In the meantime I`ll continue to enjoy my piles of beans with melted butter on. (and a nearby neighbour has been enjoying some too, as I`ve passed some on to them). They really are delicious!

Thursday, August 06, 2009

A One Off

Today something will happen that will never happen again.

It`s a unique occurrence.

Take a look at the time at five minutes and six seconds after four o`clock today, the seventh of August and this year the time and date will be -

04:05:06 07/08/09

This will never happen again in our lifetime

Tuesday, August 04, 2009

More bishy barnabees!

We`re still inundated with bishy barnabees here. As fast as I hoover one up indoors, another appears.

This one seems to have decided to go to sleep for the night on one of my lemon tree plants. He (or she!) kept nice and still while I moved the plant from the widow sill to a better place to photograph it. I think it was asleep.

After a while of seeing (or feeling) the heat of a lamp I`d got on to try and illuminate it to get a better picture, it woke up, stretched and decided to walk over to the underside of the leaf where it was darker. So, I then had to turn the plant round and try again.

Saturday, August 01, 2009

Bishy Barnabees

A few updates before I start on today`s proper post.

My door is fixed! The chap came yesterday as promised, and within a couple of minutes had solved the problem. Did I feel a bit stupid though when he showed me what the problem had been..... on the outside of the door towards the bottom was a decorative baton of wood and this had just moved along and was thus stopping the door shutting! (I`ve arrowed it on this picture)

And here, especially for Lorna, is a picture of my new computer and monitor etc. and my (at the moment) tidy desktop!! I am hoping or maybe I should say aiming to keep my study/office room a lot tidier. I`ve started by going through the drawers in the desk and sorting out what is relevant to keep and binning the items which I no longer need.

And now - on to what`s been bugging me today - bishy barnabees.
Sitting having my breakfast this morning, I saw one of them climbing up the inside of my window, so I got a largish piece of paper, got it to walk onto that and put it out of the back door. Sitting down again, I spotted another one, so got the paper again, made it walk onto it, and took it out into the garden. A few minutes later I saw another on the wall, so repeated the procedure. A few minutes later, my eyes were drawn to a card on the mantlepiece as something was moving - yes, you`ve guess it - there was another one, so picking up the card I took it out into the garden to join the others.

A short time later - having repeated this action at least 20 times, I began to get alarmed - where were they coming from? Had I got a nest of them in the room somewhere? I searched round but couldn`t see any obvious solution. I`d not got any open windows or doors, so where were they coming from?

Going outside to get in my car a short while later, I noticed that there were several flying round outside. And when I got to the town about 4 miles away, I discovered on getting out of the car that they were absolutely everywhere. Everywhere was red with them - houses, streets, .pavements, cars. ughhh. I quickly got what I needed from the shop, trying to dodge them landing on me as I walked along, and realised that there must be a huge swarm or even plague of them in our area.

Getting home, I discovered more in my living room. But now, instead of putting them outside, I decided I needed to be more drastic, so out came the hoover and each one I then found in the room found itself sucked up into my hoover. I was still puzzled though as to how they were getting in. That is, until I heard a "ping" on the hearth, and then I deduced that they must be falling down the chimney.

So, I just hope we get some heavy rain or wind to wash or blow them away!

*Bishy barnabee - the Norfolk word for a ladybird

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

What`s going to happen next?

I noticed one evening the week before last that the light on my fridge freezer, which should be on, was flashing on and off. Something`s wrong, I thought. I tentatively opened the door, but everything felt cold alright. I rang a friend who`s husband is an electrician and does any electrical work that we need, but she said sorry, he doesn`t do fridges, but she gave me the name of another chap they knew who did.

So I rang him, and he was very helpful and suggested what to do that might cure it. (turn if off at the mains for a few minutes then turn it on). Fine. It worked and the light came on constant.
A few days later I saw that it was flashing again. I left it a day or two, the freezer seemed ok and everything was hard in there.

Then I realised that things in the freezer seemed to be getting too hard. I couldn`t even get a spoon in the icecream with two hands, to get it out of the tub! On going to the fridge to get some milk the next morning, I found that the milk wasn`t cold, nor was anything in the fridge part. Very odd - the freezer was too cold and the fridge wasn`t cold at all. So I rang the chap again. He came later that day, and thankfully was able to solve the problem.

That wasn`t the end of my problems though.

On Sunday after getting my Mum indoors here, I went to shut the front door as normal - but it seemed very awkward and needed a real shove to get it properly shut. Later in the day, I went to take her home, and again had to shut the front door, but this time it just refused to close properly and wouldn`t lock. The top part of the door seemed to close ok, but from three-quarters of the way down it wouldn`t go in right. Neither would the lock turn.

I tried shutting it gently.
Shutting it with a bang.
Shutting it from outside (almost impossible).
Shutting it from inside with all my weight against it, and my foot at the bottom corner - but all to no avail, I just couldn`t get it to shut completely.
So, at the moment it`s in as far as it will go and to all appearances from outside, unless you get close to it, it looks shut, but I`ve only got a security chain on in the inside and can`t lock it.

I tried all day yesterday ringing the company who installed it (only 9 years ago, so it should still be covered by the 10 year guarantee) but all I got was an answer phone on both their office number and mobile number. I`ve tried again today and the same result. I know they are still in business as I saw one of their vans only a couple of weeks ago. I guess perhaps they`ve closed for summer holidays.

But, I need my door to close and to lock, so talking to my boss at work, about it, I`ve rung a person he suggested who does jobs for them, and he`s going to ring me back this evening to let me know when he can come. I`m still waiting for the phone call!

They say, don`t they, that things go in threes? I daren`t think what might go wrong next!

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Shopping Spree!

Well, my changing email addresses seems to have worked ok. I`m still here and able to get into my blog.

I decided that whilst I was changing Provider, I`d also treat myself to a new main computer as mine was getting so slow. So off I went to PC World at Norwich and with the assistance of a very helpful salesman chose a new one. I was very impressed by how neat and much smaller the new compact towers are, and chose one of them. I`d decided before I left home that I wouldn`t need a new monitor too, just the tower part.

Having chosen it, I then had to leave it with them to have the programmes installed and return the next day to collect it.

On getting home and looking at my monitor and thinking about the nice new ones I`d seen in the shop, I thought I`ll just have a look tomorrow and see how much they are, but really this one is ok.

So, yesterday (I had my mother with me for the day), after lunch, I got her in the car and off we went to collect my new computer. On getting to the store, she said she`d like to go in to have a look around too. So, out of the boot came the wheelchair and in mother got.

Inside the store, I said to her, I`m just going to have a look at the monitors and see how much they are, and headed off in that direction. Standing looking at all the various ones, (well, me standing, Mum sitting in the chair) she said "I`ll buy you one, which would you like". I protested, "No, I don`t bring you shopping to do that", but she insisted. So, I`ve come home with a nice new monitor to go with my new computer.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

All Change.

Having had a letter from my Internet provider earlier this week announcing that they are putting the monthly price up, I decided to search around and see if their new price could be bettered as it seemed rather a lot.

I found that yes, it could be bettered by about £4.50 a month!, so having now spent quite a long while on the phone sorting it out, I should get a new Hub next Wednesday and make the change over.

Why am I boring you with all this?..... well, this blog is linked to my old providers email, which I guess I`ll lose as soon as I change over, so I`m now going to try and change the email address which this is linked to, so that I can still get into my blog.

But, if I "disappear into thin air" you`ll know why!

Is there anything else I ought to be aware of before things change over, I wonder?

[If this does mean the end to this Blog, I will start a new one, maybe a Shanny`s Day 2]

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Why my garden??

I`ve just had a walk up my garden to see how my runner beans are progressing, and in doing so I found that all the neighbourhood cats seem to have been using the middle of my lawn for their toilet. Ughhhhhh. There wasn`t just one little pile of .......(you know what) there were 6 or 8 of them.

Why my garden?

Anyone any ideas how to stop them? Short of sitting out there with a shot-gun!

Sunday, July 19, 2009


I`ve just realised that I`ve been living on my own now for just over a year.

Having lived in the same house I was brought into as a baby and always having my parents living here too, (until my Dad died), and then it was just Mum and I until last year when after a lot of problems I managed to get her to realise that I couldn`t cope with her here any longer and she went into a housing with care place, I`ve never lived on my own.

But..... I love it!

It was something I`d longed for, for a long while, but I`m surprised in a way at how quickly I`ve adapted to it. It now feels as if I`ve always done it. I`m contented, relaxed, free.

Do I feel alone? No. I`m very content with my own company.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Do It and It`s Done

"Do it and it`s done"......

I don`t know where those words originate from - whether they`re a motto, a saying or what, but it`s something I`m now trying to practice.

I`ve found myself too much in the habit lately of "leaving things till later" - for instance, once I`ve opened my mail, instead of dealing with the items like receipts, bank statements, letters even, I tend to just put them aside and think I`ll file that away later or I`ll reply later. (Bills of course I do pay on time)

Same thing with having had something out to use, maybe from a different room or part of the house and instead of putting it straight back when finished with, I tend to think, I`ll do that later when I go upstairs, or wherever it came from. Yet, later never seems to come, and gradually the surfaces in the house all seem to have various things on them. And, the more they build up the less inclination there seems to be in me to sort them.* Yet, I don`t like my house looking untidy, I like nice clear uncluttered surfaces.

Different non-essential date related tasks too, tend to be left until the last minute deadline.
And all probably take longer to do than if I`d done them straight away. So, my motto at the moment is trying to live by "do it and it`s done!"

*(No, before you think my house is an absolute pig-sty, I must say, that I do have a good tidy up at least once a week, but yet, if I`d dealt with the item straight away I wouldn`t need to do that would I?!)

Friday, July 17, 2009

A stormy day

I`ve been dashing about between thunder storms today. I don`t mind them when I`m indoors but I don`t like having to be out in one.

A vivid flash of lightning woke me in the early hours of this morning, I got out of bed, wandered down stairs and unplugged the television aerial from its socket. (We`ve always done it, so I thought I`d better, but I don`t know if it really matters?) Do other people do it, I wondered as I made my way back upstairs. Pulling the duvet back over me, I dritfted back to sleep.

Getting ready for work this morning, I noticed the sky getting darker and darker, and spots of rain began to fall. Fortunately the heaviest of the rain held off and I got to my office without getting very wet. I`d not been there long when thunder could be heard, then the electric went off, luckily only for a minute or two, and repeated going off and on two or three more times. A bit later looking out of my window to the left the rain was pouring down and the sky was dark, but looking to the right, although it was raining, the sun was shining! How strange that seemed. I looked for a rainbow, but didn`t see one.

By the time I finished work two hours later, the sun was out and the rain had stopped. I went and purchased flowers I needed to do an arrangement at church this afternoon, I`d no sooner got into the car with the flowers and it poured with rain again.

I`ll have an early dinner I thought when I got home (rain had stopped again), so got the deep fry out and cooked my fish and chips, did the washing up, looked out of the window and clouds were blackning yet again. Quickly I loaded my bits and pieces into the car, got held up with a bit of traffic, then had to stop to post some letters, and by the time I got to the church it was chucking it down with rain. So there I sat outside the church waiting for it to ease.

The rain seemed to lessen a bit, so I grabbed some of my things, leaving the flowers in the car as I couldn`t carry everything at once. No sooner had I got inside the church door than it lightned and thundered and the rain fell down again. No way was I going outside in that to get the flowers in!

Going into the worship area of the building, the storm didn`t sound so bad. Infact there was somehow a comforting feeling about being in there with the storm raging outside. Lines of hymns about storms and God`s protection came to my mind as I stood there. Like "the storm may roar about me, ........ but God is round about me....." And I seemed to feel that protection as I stood there.

Eventually I managed to get my flowers in, did the arrangement, and... got home in the dry

And, here is the finished flower arrangement.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

A summer scene

After a very busy few weeks, I now hope to get back to writing something on here more often - not sure about daily, but at least 3 or 4 times a week.

So, to start, I really must share with you a scene I witnessed from my office window yesterday, which just said to me it must be a typical English summer scene,

The sky was heavily overcast, black thundery clouds were filling the sky and rain was imminent, the wind was blowing, making the flags across the street flap and pull alarmingly at their fixings. And there walking along on the pavement on the opposite side of the road were three people - not young people by any means. They were each wearing a customary black pack-a-mac (thin plastic raincoat, seen so often at the seaside), and in their hands they each had an ice-cream which they were licking away at!

It just made me smile and think - it`s a case of "we`re at the seaside so we must have an ice-cream"

Sunday, July 05, 2009

More Flowers

I wish I could share with you on here the wonderful perfume that meets you as you enter the door. In fact a visitor to the Festival yesterday said that they could smell the beautiful scent of lilies as the approached the building outside!

Instead, enjoy the view of these lilies

"There are always flowers for those who want to see them"

Friday, July 03, 2009

Floral Wisdom

I`ve been enjoying a Flower Festival this week. It was based on "Pearls of Wisdom" - wise sayings. Here are a few samples and pictures from it.

"Cut your coat according to your cloth"

"Consider the postage stamp,
its usefulness consists in its ability to stick to one thing until it gets there"

Sunday, June 21, 2009


The area where I live is known as "Poppyland" and today you could see why! As I looked across to the cliffs from the church yard, having been putting flowers on my Dad`s grave for Father`s Day, I saw this beautiful field of red.

The sun was out, a gentle breeze was blowing and the poppies were `dancing` in the sunlight, a lovely sight. I was so glad that I had my camera with me.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Watch the birdie!

This seagull posed so obligingly for me the other day - wonder what he`s thinking as he sees me poised with a camera out of my car window?!

Tuesday, June 02, 2009


Following a beautiful sunny day yesterday, I just had to take my camera to catch the sun going down into the sea where I live, and what a wonderful sight it was. These photos just show a glimpse of the wonder I saw. Enjoy them.