Wednesday 30 November 2016

Reality Shows

I don't watch them, I don't watch the ones about wannabe celebrities such as the Kardashians, and I don't watch the ones that purport to be competitions, The Apprentice etc. I don't even watch the DIY or gardening ones.
I don't for one minute believe they are real, they are mainly staged and scripted and then cut to get the finish required.
A few years ago I worked with someone who's spouse was involved with a well known show where houses were refurbished in a very short time.
These refurbishments were actually filmed over a week, none of the work was actually achieved in the time claimed.

And he needs therapy, why?

My L&M got a bollocking on Monday from his line manager, for not replacing the battery in a piece of equipment.
He explained that the equipment in question didn't take batteries it ran off the mains and the mains to the equipment had been turned off due to flooding.
His line manager refused to believe him so he had to take the cover off and prove there was no battery.

On Tuesday my L&M was setting out tables and chairs for an exam, he was called away to move a puddle in the car park (it was raining very hard). He said he's do it as soon as he'd finished setting up the exam. He was told to do it immediately as it was a health and safety issue. So he got piddling wet through sweeping away a puddle that was reforming as quick as he could sweep it away and the exam was late being set up.

On Thursday my L&M went to his 2nd group therapy, the hogger left soon after the session started as he was told he had to let others speak.

My L&M used the examples above to explain what caused his work related stress.
The group were asked for suggestions to help my L&M.
The first suggestion was to go to his line managers manager.
My L&M has done this but has been told that he must follow his line managers instructions.
The 2nd suggestion was to go to someone higher up.
My L&M has done this and been told that the decision has been made, he can live with it or leave.
The 3rd suggestion was that my L&M approach HR to see if there is any help there.
MY L&M replied, 'I would but we only have one staff member dealing with HR & she is off sick with stress!!!!!

Tuesday 29 November 2016

Saving money

No more Sky TV, so that is one saving. The Grand Prix finished last weekend, I cancelled it immediately afterwards.

I'm shopping around for Christmas gifts for the grandchildren, I'm looking to spend about £10 - £15 per child. One grandchild has a birthday between now and Christmas, I've ordered a set of walkie talkies for him £12.99.

I found an offer on Amazon for an interactive Freddy Teddy, £7.99 as long as I ordered other items to the value of £40. The walkie talkies, a carry case for my L&M and a couple of books on my kindle soon came to that.

Other gifts so far, I've bought or that I am regifting, a 2nd hand Donald Duck, a friendship bracelet kit, a bottle of Polish vodka, a box of Lindt Christmas chocolates.

Sunday 27 November 2016

Lazy Sunday

Lazy day today, DGD had a bad night, she has a very bad cough, I ended up sleeping in with her from 3am. That way every time she coughed I was able to pass her a glass of water and pull the covers up over her to warm her up and then the coughing abated.

She was still up and about just after 6, she had dippy eggs for breakfast and I took her home about 11ish and fed DS's cats on the way home.

I've managed to get two loads of washing washed and dried over the radiators today, so my L&M have all our work clothes ready for next week.

We had visitors pop in for a chat at 1:30, when they left we watched the Grand Prix that we had recorded.
Sky will be cancelled tomorrow now the GP has finished.

No real cooking for me next week, my L&M's shifts means he won't want an evening meal, I will make do with jacket potatoes or egg on toast.

Back to work tomorrow and back to trying to persuade the solicitors to do the job they are charging me an arm and a leg not to do!

Saturday 26 November 2016


My L&M and I went out last night to a quiz night, it was well organised and well run though my enjoyment was somewhat marred by a misogynistic twat who joined my team.

The quiz didn't finish until 11 so we had a late night and then an early start this morning as my L&M had to work this morning.

I dropped my L&M at work then went to DD2's to give her a lift to work, as her husband coaches DGS's football team on Saturday mornings I bring 2 year old Suzy back to my house so she isn't stuck on a cold pitch all morning.

This morning DGD Norah, eight, had a nasty cough so I offered to have her at my house too, she also missed her turn at staying over night in Friday as we were out.

Not wanting to be left out, dgd Eileen, five, looked at me appealingly, so I offered to take all three of them.

'It will be fine' I said, 'I won't go out at all we will do some needle felting and make some biscuits'.

As I set of for home with all three dgd's in the car I suddenly remembered that I needed to buy some bread, to make my L&M some sandwiches for his lunch. So all three girls went into the bakers with me with me and were allowed choose a treat, they decided on malt loaf that would be sliced and toasted when we got home.

Then I remembered I needed to go to the sorting office  in the next village to pick up two parcels. There is no parking near the sorting office, so I had to park in a nearby car park and persuade all three girls to walk crocodile style along narrow pavements. Norah walked nicely, Eileen twerked all the way there and back, Suzy was most put out that she had to hold my hand and wasn't allowed to run.

Once the parcels were collected we set off for home, then I remembered that I was feeding DS's cats today and tomorrow. So we stopped at DS's house, the cats were nowhere to be seen, but they were probably scared off by the racket the three girls made singing a Christmas song, I'm not convinced they were even all singing the same song!

We eventually made it home and I made my L&M some sandwiches, then it was all three girls back into coats and shoes and back in the car to deliver grandpa's lunch. All went well until we went to leave and Suzy realised the grandpa wasn't coming home yet. She roared and cried all the way home. Fortunately the promise of toasted malt loaf distracted her eventually.

Finally we got round to needle felting, colouring and biscuit making, we made chocolate chip cookies, the easiest to make with a two year old helping!

Friday 25 November 2016

I can't deal with stupid.

I've made a decision, to save my sanity I'm no longer dealing with stupid, I refuse to be patient any more, from now on stupid will be treated as stupid deserves.

On Monday a colleague sent me an email, she wanted a release card printed, these are credit card sized when printed. She is supposed to email me a copy of the wording required. She typed it all on one line as she has trouble finding the return key, there were also 4 spelling mistakes. Usually I would retype this before printing, but she earns 2 or 3 times my salary so why should I, I also printed it in the size required. It was so small it was unreadable!

Twice in the last 6 weeks I have reversed out of my parking space at work and nearly hit a car parked on the yellow hatching. People are told not to park on the hatching as it is there to enable some of us to get out of our spaces. In line with my new policy of not being patient with stupid I asked the car driver if she knew what the hatching was for or if she thought it was a new form of Christmas decoration.

Black Friday

A colleague was almost having a breakdown at lunchtime, panicking about whether she would get into town in time to get any Black Friday bargains.

I asked what, in particular, she needed to buy.

'Nothing' she replied 'But I have to get there I might miss out otherwise'.

She's adamant she will save hundreds of ££££ if she can get there early enough.

My suggestion that she go home and save even more was not appreciated!

Thursday 24 November 2016

Cutting back for Christmas

I'm sorting out my cupboards and freezer ready for Christmas, I did a supermarket shop yesterday, it must be the smallest ever.

Black pepper
I also shopped at the butchers, I bought:-
Chicken thighs
Breast of lamb
One pork chop
Two pieces of steak
Minced beef
I have fish, grated cheese and a casserole in the freezer and one Co-op £5 deal, the deal consisted of a chicken and leek pie, potato croquets, peas, swede and carrot mash and a tub of ice cream. In the fridge there are potatoes and other vegetables.
Because of my L&M's shift pattern and a couple of nights out, this should through until Christmas.

Tuesday 22 November 2016

The end of the civilized world!

No, not the election of Donald Trump, an email I received today from a solicitor's office.

Thank you for your email.

I confirm everything that has been requested by Bloggs & Co has now been sent to them for review.

We was not aware this information had gone directly to the lender but will chase this up with them.

I will of course let you know when a completion date has been set.



Well this begs the question 'Why were they not aware as they sent the documents themselves?'

Also what is the level of education of someone working in a solicitors office who writes 'We was not aware'

Ye gods is syntax and grammar dead!

Monday 21 November 2016

Birthday gift from my L&M

Ten more years, ten more songs

1970 Band of Gold,  Freda Payne.
1971 Maggie-May, Rod Stewart.
1972 Schools Out, Alice Cooper.
1973 You're so Vain, Carly Simon.
1974 Waterloo, ABBA.
1975 Make Me Smile, Steve Harley.
1976 Don't go Breaking my Heart, Elton John & Kiki Dee.
1977 I Don't Want to Talk About it, Rod Stewart.
1978 Wuthering Heights, Kate Bush.
1979 Hit me with your Rhythm Stick, Ian Drury

Sunday 20 November 2016

Baking Day

Not all my baking is pictured here but I've made:-
2 dozen mince pies.
2 dozen cheese pinwheels.
48 mocha squares.
48 chocolate squares.
2 tea loves.
A Victoria sponge.
A chocolate cake.
6 sausage rolls.
A tray of flapjack.
2 tea loaves.

Saturday 19 November 2016

Ten songs ten years

After Sue's post entitled Tracks of my years I decided to post this.

Teen Angel by Mark Dinning 1959
A cheerful little song about a teenage girl killed by a train.

Itsy Bitsy Teenie Weenie Yellow Polka Dot Bikini  by Brian Hyland 1960, I was in Margate when this song was popular.

Are you Sure by The Allisons 1961 a Eurovision winner, my first single.

Telstar by the tornados 1962.

Sweets for my Sweet by The Searchers 1963, dancing at the Wimbledon Palais.

Baby I Need Your Loving by The Four Tops 1964 I love Motown.

I got you babe Sonny & Cher 1965, nuff said.

All or Nothing by The Small Faces 1966.

Let the heartbreak begin by Long John Baldry 1967.

Ledgend of Xanadu by Dave Dee Dozy Beaky Mick and Titch 1968 this song probably triggered my love of whips!

Where do you go to my lovely Peter Sarsted 1969 this song needs to be listened to with a glass of merlot.

Friday 18 November 2016

The Hogger

We all know one I’m sure.

In the pub, the person has to hold court and takes over every conversation always explaining how his illness is worse that anyone else's, his car bigger, his holidays better.

At a quiz night, the hogger is the person who insists that they know the answer to every question, they are usually wrong but then blame everyone else for the team’s lack of success.

I once went to a psychic event, the sort where someone on stage tries to pass a message on to a bereaved loved one. In the audience there was a hogger couple, it didn’t matter what the message or where in the audience the psychics tried to direct the message the hoggers were insistent. That’s us, we lost someone like that, we lost someone in those circumstances. All I can say is that the hoggers must have lost a huge amount of relatives. There were 5 psychics on throughout the evening and each came up with around 10 or 12 messages each, but no one else got a look in as the hoggers were adamant that every message was for them.

My L&M had his first therapy session yesterday, CBT was recommended, but he’s been sent to group therapy, he was not impressed. It takes him two hours to get to the meeting, so he left at 4pm, the meeting was from 6 ‘til 8, and then 2 hours to get home. In 6 hours his only conversation was with the bus drivers.

There were twelve people in his group and of course there was a hogger, and not just any hogger, a political hogger who was a cross between Wolfie Smith and Arthur Scargill. The therapist started to run through the aims of the meeting, only to be interrupted by the hogger who wants to know why he is there, what are the therapists qualifications etc. The hogger then lists every type of meeting/group/ therapist & medication he’s ever used.
Eventually, the therapist managed to regain control and started to go through the group, each person was asked to give their first name and if they wanted, a brief description of their problems.

The first person said ‘My name is Fred and I find my works IT system very stressful’

The hogger leaps in with ‘I had a job like that, I know everything about IT but the system didn’t work properly, it wasn’t my fault’.  He rambles on for a while about how unfair it all was.

Person number 2 ‘My name is Freda and I find my colleagues intimidating because they are all younger than me so I get very stressed’

In comes the hogger ‘I had a job like that I got picked on because I was too old’ on and on he drones about how difficult it was for him because his boss was young to and didn’t understand his problems

Person number 3 ‘My name is George and my work is very pressured, targets to achieve, deadlines to meet’

And here’s the hogger again ‘I had a job like that, too much pressure, the bosses should try doing the jobs themselves, I got picked on all the time, yada, yada, yada’.

Each time the therapist try’s to curtail the hogger and get the meeting back on track, but it took the full 2 hours to get even half way round the group.

The hogger would like a job where he didn’t have to do anything, where he is never busy and where everybody admires him, wouldn’t we all!
So my L&M arrived home frozen to the core after waiting in the rain for a two bus’s having not even got as far as my name is..........

Thursday 17 November 2016

From the sublime to the ridiculous

So yesterday I received the stupid email about needing to get my extra ID certified, another £100-£200 to a solicitor.

I also received an email telling me that my five years no claims on my buildings policy isn't sufficient, I need to prove 10 years no claims with the same company.

Well I can't because I have only been with the company for nine years, my insurance company provide me with proof of nine years no claims, but not good enough says the solicitor. We need a declaration from the insurance company to say that they were aware of the flood risk when I took out the policy.

By now I'm tearing my hair out and having a panic attack and forward these emails to my broker.

The broker then contacts the mortgage company who say 'We've not asked for any of this, we are satisfied with the five year no claims'.

So why are the solicitors being so bloody difficult?

Because they can, I think.

I am working on a detailed letter of complaint, three pages so far!

Wednesday 16 November 2016

My 2nd favourite form of relaxation

After six stressful phone calls dealing with idiots and incompetents I'm listening to  Beethoven's Ode to joy, full blast!

Well I would indulge in my most favourite relaxation, but then I wouldn't have my hands free to type!

Tuesday 15 November 2016


DGD Suzy's speech is getting clearer by the day.
When we arrived at my house she looked around and said 'Nana's house' and once through the front door she said 'Doggy all gone?' as last time she visited we were dog sitting.
Suzy was playing with a piece of blutac  when she came over, I asked he what she had in her hand 'Smurf Poo' was her reply!

Fecking morons

Funny isn't it, I just assume that people in professional jobs have a modicum of intelligence but it seems Im wrong.
I spent an hour today talking to a solicitor's assistant and then to the solicitor herself, they are insisting that my L&M fills in a form agreeing to being taken off our mortgage.
My L&M isn't on the mortgage it is solely I my name.
Unfortunately this does not compute and they cannot grasp the concept.
I have forwarded her a copy of my mortgage statement that so she can  see it is in my name only, all to no avail.
So I try to find a solicitor who will witness said document, I'm unable to find one locally. I informed the solicitors in Manchester who emailed me to say 'We have found two that are near you, one in Hereford and one in Brighton' .
Last time I looked neither of these places were in Berkshire, so this just adds to my opinion that I'm dealing with morons.
I'm not blaming this on them being in Manchester, I love Manchester and spent time in Salford & Bury.
I lay the blame completely on them being stupid, and stupid thrives everywhere unfortunately.

Monday 14 November 2016

Sunday 13 November 2016

Enough already

with the sodding fireworks, it's 13th November!

Happy dance

I've been doing a happy dance here for the last few days, a very kind blog reader recently sorted out her wardrobe and sent me two dresses and four tops, all unworn and all much more expensive than anything I would usually wear.
The new clothes have certainly given me a boost and put a spring in my step.

Freezer rummage

I found some cooked sliced gammon so that's our roast dinner today. I also found some white fish and minced beef in the freezer and lots of eggs in the fridge.
There is enough gammon and minced beef for 2 meals each so the meal plan will be, in no particular order:-
Cottage pie.
Gammon, egg and chips.
Fish in parsley sauce.
Spag bol.

Saturday 12 November 2016


A letter arrived from the solicitors, not the one they claim they posted Thursday but the one they claim to have posted last week. Unfortunately the letter is dated 10th November, bit of a giveaway really.
I will continue to push them twice a day, they are costing an a r m and leg so I expect they want to drag it out so it looks like it's worth the money.

Dogs has been here since Friday trying to explain the mysteries of video editing to my L&M.  It's like watching a dolphin trying g to knit. My L&M is not daft, far from it, but he cannot see the on screen prompts s  it is very difficult.

Wednesday 9 November 2016

Cat sitting and other things

My son phoned on Monday, asked if I look after his cats as he was going to Iceland.
For a few moments I wondered why he needed me to look after his cats if he was just going shopping.
Then the light dawned on me, he's going to Iceland the country, not the shop.
I checked on them today, they didn't need feeding, just a bit of company.
I also went to a local solicitors and signed some documentation for the solicitors I am dealing with who are in Manchester. Finding the local office was a nightmare and a long walk but it is now done.
Tomorrow I will continue phoning the Manchester office and pushing them to complete as soon as possible.

Tuesday 8 November 2016

It's a year today

Since my lovely Mother in Law died, tomorrow would have been her 81st birthday, it's been a pretty shitty year overall, let's hope it improves soon.

I finally received an email copy of the financial documents, it should have taken a couple of weeks, we are now in to month 4, I am now at the stage of dealing with solicitors, it's like pushing water uphill.

In the bedroom

Something I used to do in bed, a lot, isn't happening so much any more.
No I'm not talking about sex, that is usually reserved for the sofa or the kitchen table.
I'm talking about sleep, I've got into a really bad habit of falling asleep for about an hour, then waking up and staying awake for hours.
I often only fall asleep an hour before it's time to get up and then I feel tired all day.

Monday 7 November 2016

Performance management

It's appraisal time again, though now it's called performance management, a new system is being launched and it's all done online. It is claimed to be the bees knees of performance related pay policy for support staff.

I think that translates into 'A way of keeping wages low'!

By Christmas I should have attended a training workshop on how to use the system and had agreed at least one objective with my line manager.

I then have until March to collect evidence to support my claim that I have achieved my objective, I then need to upload said evidence to the website.

I then have a meeting with my line manager to discuss my progress and to set my next set of objectives.

I'm not sure how this is going to work, I cannot work any faster as my speed is governed by the speed of the machinery.

One of my previous objectives was to be more positive, my reply at the time was 'I'm positive I'm being shit on'.

Another objective was to ensure my room is kept tidy, it is always tidy when I leave at 2, it is always a tip when I arrive in the morning.

My excitement at being provided with yet another unattainable objective is almost uncontrollable.

Sunday 6 November 2016

Leftovers and meal plan

We had friends over yesterday evening, I did a buffet rather than a proper meal as it's too complicated cooking for one vegetarian, one timid eater, one fussy sod (my L&M) and one eat anything pig (me).

I bought a fresh large cob from the bakers and some gorgeous cheese from a local posh cheese shop. 
They included some goats cheese with fenugreek, red Leicester with chilli, Bix from a nearby farm, Barkham blue, another local cheese and a camembert that I studded with rosemary from the garden and then baked.
I also bought kettle chips, nachos, a tub of tapenade some grapes and some sour cream dip.
For my beloved I made some sausage rolls, cheese palmers and cooked some mini sausages.
Some of the grapes were posed artfully on the cheese board, the rest were served later in the fruit bowl with some satsumas instead of desert.

The food went down very well and there wasn't a lot left but here is what I did this morning with the leftovers.

For breakfast I had a slice of the bread, toasted on one side, then I spread the other side with tapenade and the rest of the creamy Bix, it went under the grill until the cheese had melted, it made a delicious breakfast.

All the last bits of the hard cheeses have been grated together and are in the freezer until I need to make a cheese sauce, my L&M won't know they are in there so will eat it willingly!

My lunch today will be a jacket potato with the rest of the sour cream dip, my L&M won't eat lunch, he had a cooked breakfast around 11ish and will have roast lamb shank about 5ish.

Meal plan or lack thereof.
I don't have a fixed in stone meal plan, if I did either my L&M or wouldn't fancy the upcoming meal and it would be wasted.
I do work vaguely along the scheme below.

Roast on Sunday, often a cheats roast using a chop or sliced cooked meat leftover from a previous joint.

Something with mash, liver, sausage, cottage pie, chops or fish pie.

Something with pasta, spag bol or carbonara.

Something with rice, piri piri, curry or Chinese.

Something with chips, steak, egg or gammon.

I grab something out the freezer in the morning when I get up and cook it that evening.

Doing a happy dance

Yesterday I received 2 beautiful dresses, sent to me by a blog reader, I'm so excited I haven't stopped jigging about yet.

Wednesday 2 November 2016

Don't feed the Trolls

Thank you to everyone who commented about the troll, trolls are just sad, bored and cowardly, they try to cause upset by being nasty.

If someone posts an unpleasant anonymous comment I usually just ignore it, like I say, I don't feed the troll.

Why not have the balls to say 'My name is.......... and I didn't like what you said'.

What did you say

Many years ago when my daughter was about 7 she was invited to another child's house to play.
 Kathleen's parents seemed nice, the father didn't work but I wasn't sure why, his wife said that it was the first time he had allowed their daughter to have a friend over. He did seem very fussy and particular, a bit of an old woman and I wasn't sure how he'd cope. But as my daughter was always well behaved when visiting (she was hell on wheels at home) I thought it would probably be ok.
I collected her after a couple of hours and she had had a good time and had behaved very well.
On the walk home she and I were chatting about what she and her friend had done and what they had to eat. Suddenly my daughter announced that Kathleen's daddy couldn't go to work as he had a vagina!
Stunned I asked her to repeat what she'd just said, which she did.
After a few moments I asked her why having a vagina stopped him working.
She explained that it made his chest hurt and made him dizzy.
I spent the next 10 minutes getting my daughter to practice saying angina, angina, otherwise everyone would think that Kathleen's daddy was a transsexual

Tuesday 1 November 2016


I read yesterday about Project333, I had to chuckle, these are the rules.

For 3 months you are supposed to manage with just  33 items of clothing, accessories, jewellery, outerwear and shoes.

These items are not counted as part of the 33 items – wedding ring or another sentimental piece of jewellery that you never take off, underwear, sleep wear, in-home lounge wear,  and workout clothing (you can only wear your workout clothing to workout) for 3 months you are only allowed to wear 33 items.

Last weekend I went through my summer dresses, I put one in the bin and the other 3 have been packed away along with my 2 white summer cardigans. For the next approximately 6 months (depending on the temperature) my wardrobe will consist of 3 dresses, 1 pinafore dress, 1 blouse, 2 jackets, 2 cardigans and 2 pairs of boots, 1 pair of earrings and 2 scarves.

So I must be doing the 146 project, it doesn't have the same ring to it does it.

Arseholes to the left of me, arseholes to the right.

I've had a really shitty day today, way too much work to get through in a day, everyone wanting everything yesterday, hey ho, they will all get their stuff when it's ready.

I defrosted 2 small pieces of ribeye steak for tea and served them with mushrooms, jacket potato and peas. It made my L&M's day, he loves a bit of steak and it was delicious and not very expensive.

I'm spending the evening unravelling some yarn, a nice mindless job whilst I watch some catchup tv.

Denise, thank you for your comment, I have tried to email you but my message keeps bouncing back.

Lights out again!

Yet again our on-site lights have failed! I'm up and dressed and about to visit our site manager who is due here today. Last time this h...