Thursday 31 January 2019

Just an average week

Today we saw the stroke consultant, he is not happy that CHS's levels of dizziness have not improved and has ordered more tests. He said the fatigue could take a year to 18 months to clear. This appointment took all morning. We stopped at the local shop as we were out of apples, I found a reduced priced chicken and mince so bought them. The mince was divided it to two and is in the freezer, the chicken was cooked, some used for our evening meat, the rest of meat stripped from it to make chicken pie and the carcass made into soup. We managed to fit in a walk, we try for two walks  day but one was enough in such cold weather. I also answered an email from the estate agent and one from the solicitor.

Tomorrow if there is no snow I need to collect CHS's prescription, this is always a joy and on one occasion took a ridiculous three hours, it always takes at least an hour, added to this, the prescription is always incorrect. If I have any energy left after battling with the medical professionals I will visit the nearby butchers. One or two walks around the marina will also be achieved hopefully.

Saturday is Therapy Gym, this will take up most of the morning, then it is home for lunch and then a walk.

Sunday there is nothing planned, I'll probably fill the water tank and do some washing along with two walks.

Monday, a walk first, then general housework, strip the bed and remake it, turn the mattress, no joke in the confined space of a narrowboat bedroom, another walk.

Tuesday, Stroke Club, I need to empty the shed at the house.

Wednesday, Therapy Gym in the morning, we should be home just after one, then lunch and another walk.

Then it will be Thursday again and the whole merry-go-round starts again.

Monday 28 January 2019

Re-jigging the budget.

We are getting rehabilitation help for CHS, but it doesn't come cheap.

The Therapy Gym  was £25 to join and £7 a session, he goes twice a week.

Then there is Stroke Club, £55 a month.

Both are good value and a great help towards CHS's recovery but the money has to come from somewhere. 

We do not have a bottomless purse to dip into.

So it's a decision, what do we give up to gain an extra £100 a month?

Poor Albie

We went to get some more coal from DD1's house today.

It was the first time Albie had met CHS, poor Albie was so scared, he's very nervous of men.

His tail was down between his legs and he was very cowed.

We know he had all his ribs broken, probably by being kicked, probably by a man as he is less nervous with women.

CHS was calm and gentle and after a while Albie warmed to him but was still a bit cautious.

We don't think Albie is pure Staffy as he is quite tall.

He can jump, silently, up onto the kitchen work top, not just his front legs, all four of them!


This is for Readlisten.
DD  daughter
DS  son
DGD Granddaughter
DGS Grandson, you will find these shortforms all over the internet

CHS is my husband, it stands for Captain Hot Stuff, because when we moved on to out boat it was cold, I was wearing layer upon layer of clothes, CHS on the other hand was wearing tee shirt and trousers and was to hot.
Since his stroke he can no longer keep warm so now the stove is lit all the time.

Sunday 27 January 2019

Put a sock in it

We have mushroom vents on the top of the  boat they are brass and look lovely when they are shiny.

They allow fresh air in to the boat when the doors are  closed.

They also cause quite a draught when it is windy.

There are two of these vents in the shower room and in the winter it is freezing, especially in the shower when you are wet, the cold breeze is too much.

Today I gave in and put a sock in the vent over the shower, it was bliss to have a shower without an article blast coming from overhead.

I won't block any other vents up but I do feel that two vents and a window in such a small space is too much.

Friday 25 January 2019

Clearing out the fridge

Scratching around, trying to make a meal.
I haven't managed to fit in a shop this week.

In the fridge I had a boned chicken thigh, 2 slices each of salami and chorizo, a handful of grated cheese and half a tub of thick cream, not much to feed the two of us.

I also had plenty of potatoes and other vegetables.

I sliced all the meat up and cooked it on a low heat.

I buttered a dish, half filled it with thinly sliced potatoes then put the cooked meat on top.

I mixed the cream with some hot water and poured it into the dish.

I added another layer of sliced potatoes and topped the dish up with the cream/water mix and sprinkled on the grated cheese.

It took about an hour to cook, I served it with brussels and courgette.

Thursday 24 January 2019

RIP Ella

You may remember my DD1 adopted a rescue staffy a year ago.

She was thought to be about 12 years old and had been used in a puppy farm.

She'd been thrown out when a prolapse stopped her being bred from again.

She turned out to be blind and deaf and much older than 12.

She adored the family and they adored her.

Ella has been to the vets a few times in the last few weeks with various health issues.

Today we took her to the vets for the last time, she was put to sleep this morning.

DD1 and her family are all upset but consoling themselves with the thought that Ella had a wonderful last year, she was so spoilt as everyone knew she didn't have long.

I went with DD1 for moral support, Ella had breakfast of fresh chicken and smoked salmon, her favourite.

She went to sleep in DD1's arms.

Wednesday 23 January 2019


Today I have a trip to the solicitors to prove I'm who I claim to be.

Yesterday's outing was very successful, I don't think CHS will want to attend regularly.
Some people there are very severely affected by their stroke and he avoids people like that.

I enjoyed our hour there, people spoke to me and CHS very kindly and know exactly how things are.

They have confirmed there is no carers group I can join as the criteria has changed and CHS doesn't fit in to any of the seven categories.

As for asking my DD's to help, one has four children, a dog, a husband with a long term chronic condition and a full time and part time job.

The other has 5 children 2 dogs and is a foster carer.
They would both help out in an emergency, but neither can help on a regular basis.

Actually knowing there is no help is a relief, I shall no longer be running round in circles looking for something that doesn't exist.

Tuesday 22 January 2019

Yet another bloody assessment

My poor CHS is assessed out, one this morning and he has another one next Friday.

It's frosty here but we don't need to leave the boat until 10:30 so we can take our time.

We need to collect coal from DD1 and possibly meet her new dog.

We also need to buy milk.

When we get home I need to clean through as everywhere is dusty.

Monday 21 January 2019

It's Motown weather here

What's Motown weather I hear you ask?

It's 3 Degrees and I'm wearing Four Tops

Who cares part two.

I have finally received a definite answer about support for carers.
The patient has to fit in to at least one of seven categories, CHS doesn't fit the categories therefore there is no help and no support.
At least I know now.

Pat I do treasure what I have, that doesn't mean I don't get worn out and fed up some days.

I think it would have been better if all the professionals hadn't kept telling me that there was help and support out there for me. If they had just said at the beginning. This is it, it all falls to you from now on so get used to it, at least I would have known where I stood.

Deborah, it's not just that I think £7.50 is expensive, it is beyond my budget. 

Who cares

Nobody it would seem!

Because CHS is still classed as working, albeit off sick we are not claiming any benefits, this means we aren't eligible for some of the carers help.

CHS is still getting lots of help with rehabilitation, what with the gym and the Stroke Club and medical appointments so I'm not complaining about that.

It seems to me that the needs of the wife/carer are ignored. I have also noticed that there is more help for male carers whereas I'm classed as a wife and therefore my role is just that. There are lots of carers websites and forums and even some meetings but as with the  knit and natter nothing I can actually get to. 

CHS and I are managing and he is improving so mostly that seems to mean 

Sunday 20 January 2019

Freedom denied, and the search continues.

So much for my greatly anticipated freedom, CHS's appointments are now coming thick and fast.

Rehab gym on Monday's and Thursday's, it's a 15 minute drive there 45 minute session and 15 minute drive back, too far for me to return home. So I'm faced with sitting in the car freezing my bits off, brr. He had his assessment there yesterday at 11:30, I was too cold to crochet, it took me until 5 o'clock to warm up.
Stroke club on Tuesdays this is an all day event, but I can't see him wanting to attend as most of the people are a lot more unwell than he is.
Solicitors on Wednesday and Dr's on Friday.

As CHS rightly says there isn't a shortage of knit and natter groups, there are 5 within about 8 miles. The problem is my inability to attend them. 
We have two evening groups that are out as they are along unlit roads.
There is on that cost's £7.50 that is out of my price range.
There is one on a Thursday morning that clashes with the rehab gym.
There is one more I need to investigate.

Saturday 19 January 2019

Newest family member

DD1 has just adopted another rescue staffy.

And my current hooky project.

Brrr it's cold

CHS had his rehab gym assessment at 11 am today, it seemed a bit disorganised to me. He was told to do too much and was unwell.

Hopefully it will be better next time, he wanted me to stay, but it was rammed with people  and there was nowhere to sit.

I sat in the car outside for an hour, I took my crochet but my hands were stiff with cold so I couldn't do any. I was freezing, it's nearly 4 now and I still haven't warmed up.

He is going twice a week, his first appointment is Monday evening, it's going to be even colder in the car then.

Friday 18 January 2019

Busy busy

We have a busy few days coming up.

CHS went for his assessment at the rehab gym today, unfortunately even though it was a pre booked appointment they couldn't fit him in so we have to go back tomorrow.

Then, next week we have:-
 A mammogram booked for me.
 Another different assessment for CHS.   
 A solicitors appointment.
 A boat viewing.
 Two more gym sessions.
 A coal collection from DD1
 And finally the house survey.

Thursday 17 January 2019

Face ache

Not tooth ache, definitely face ache.

All along my cheekbone and around my eye socket.
It is very sensitive and sore.

It's probably stress related, things are hotting up with the house sale.

Umpteen emails asking questions.

Conveyancing assistants who send emails without the attachments that are referred to in the email.

A constant hunt for documents proving everything from my NI number to my inside leg measurement.

All this is being done against a background noise of my beloved watching chainsaw videos on YouTube!

Wednesday 16 January 2019

Freedom at last

CHS's discharge notes are in the post, finally after 4 long months we no longer need to be joined at the hip.

He has an assessment at the local re-hab gym and an interview for a taster day at the local stroke club.

I'm looking for a daytime knit and natter club that accepts boaters, some places don't, they think we are pikeys and are smelly and light-fingered.

I don't like the term pikey, I wouldn't use the term to describe anyone, but I have been called it a few times.

Well, I'm often smelly, but I smell of wood smoke  which I don't find it unpleasant.

Monday 14 January 2019

Round and round the garden.

Well that what it felt like today!

I tried to cancel my tv license online but I didn't fit the criteria!
I live on a narrowboat wasn't a tickable option, it often isn't!
I cancelled the direct debit as I knew that would generate a response, it did.
This morning I reveal email from tv licensing asking me to phone them, so I did.
I explained that I needed to cancel my tv license as my tenant is moving out and the house will be empty until it is sold.
The person I was speaking to wanted the postcode of the tenants new address, I said I had no idea.
Then he asked if I was still intending to watch tv, I said yes, so then he wanted my postcode. I explained that I had no postcode as I live on a boat.
This did not compute, he explained that I must have a postcode to watch tv.

The conversation went round in circles, I felt like the Oozlum bird.

Friday 11 January 2019

Is it really that strange?

My beloved is used to me using my crystals.
He is used to me using tarot cards.
He is used to me foraging.
He is used to me making soup from nettles and veg peelings.

But earlier this week I did something so strange that he is still disturbed by it.

I don't like to waste food, so when I had half a tin o baked beans left I decided to have them for lunch. I also had a bagel left from a pack I bought earlier.
I thought it was perfect reasonable to toast the bagel and heat up the beans to eat. To me it was just like beans on toast.

My beloved thinks it's the weirdest thing I've ever done!

A lethal combination

A couple of days ago CHS had a hospital appointment, I sat in the cafe to wait for him. I ordered coffee, they had no decaf but as it was mid morning I decided to risk it.

When we left we passed a local bakery, CHS loves their doughnuts so we bought one each, it's weeks since we last had one.

We then visited a friend of CHS who has recently had heart surgery, his wife kindly made us coffee, it was not decaf.

It was only after I'd eaten my doughnut that I remembered that last time it had sat leaden in my stomach for hours.

I was still awake at 3am suffering from indigestion and caffeine jitters.

Coffee and doughnuts are a lethal combination for me.

Thursday 10 January 2019

Plenty of Fish

But not many you'd want to catch and some of those you'd want to throw back.

CHS's friend visited a couple of days ago, he uses the Plenty of Fish website to meet women. He's had lots of dates but he often only meets women once as if they are not his type he doesn't believe in wasting his or their time on a second date.
A couple of them, he said, had put pics on their ad that were at least 10 years out of date.

The last one he met he really liked and within three weeks they were planning their future life together but within 3 months the relationship was very rocky, they split up recently for the fifth time and he insists that this time it's final.

Wednesday 9 January 2019

Let's talk about sex baby.

Actually let's not, please.

We had a visit from two ladies from the Stroke Association, it was the local 'visitor' who is a lady in her 60's and her young go-getter of a  boss. The local visitor was being assessed.

They have a set list of topics they must cover and all went well until we came to the topic of relationships and how they can be changed when a spouse suddenly become a carer. I admitted that it had been difficult at first but it was getting easier with time.

Then with a strangled sniff the local visitor brought up the topic of our intimate relations. We were now an hour into their visit and CHS was tired. I could tell by the look of blank incomprehension on his face he had no idea what she was talking about.

I answered for him and said 'It's a bit sporadic but we are managing ok' there was a pause and the in response to a nudge from her boss the local visitor said in a strangled voice, that sometimes changes in position could benefit and that there was a leaflet available if we wanted a copy.

I felt so sorry for the visitor who was obviously uncomfortable and being pushed into this conversation by her boss that I retorted.
'It is ok, I get on top to save him moving about and if I need inspiration I'll borrow a copy of the Karma Sutra from the library!'

I realise that they are damned if they do and damned if they don't discuss sex, but surely a discrete mention of leaflets being available if needed, would have sufficed.

Monday 7 January 2019


I've seen a job that I want, that I know I could do but I'm barred because of my age, it's just not fair.

I want to be a sugar babe, I know I'd be perfect for the job. 

I'm a good actress and I could look adoringly at the millionaire who was paying me.
I could wear a bikini, ok I wouldn't look good but I could still wear one.
I can converse on many different subjects in an intelligent manner.
I don't have a passport but that could be rectified.
I really think that I missed my calling in life!

Sunday 6 January 2019

Death at Hungerford Stairs

I've finished Death at Hungerford Stairs, 
I enjoyed it, especially the descriptions of Victorian London.

Next I'll read Firstborn by Ryan Attard.

Saturday 5 January 2019

Cutting costs

In a few more weeks CHS will have his pay cut by 50%. We're very grateful that he has been on full pay since his stroke but he is not well enough to return to work at the moment.

The first thing to go has been the tv license, my tenant is moving on 31st so I've cancelled the direct debit, a saving of £12:56 a month.

Soon I will no longer pay council tax on my house which will save £130 a month.
Then the £12 a month insurance will be cancelled.

There will still need to be more savings made but these first few are painless.

Thursday 3 January 2019

How many?

How many books can I read in a year.
I was reading a post on a forum where someone is aiming to read 10 books in 2019.
I will start listing all the books I read this year.
The first book is The Murder of Patience Brooks b J C Briggs, I've just finished it.
It's set in Victorian England, I found it a well written murder mystery with Charles Dickens as part of the investigating team.

Next I'm reading Death at Hungerford Stairs, the second in the series.

Wednesday 2 January 2019

The Atrocity Archives

I've just finished reading the Atrocity Archives by Charles Stross. The first book in the Laundry Files series.

My son recommended the books to me as I'd enjoyed the Harry Dresden books.

Charles Stross is an English author and he seems to have written quite a few books, goody.

 I mainly read kindle unlimited as I can easily read a book a day, especially when I'm not sleeping well. 

I receive Amazon vouchers occasionally and usually spend these on books for my kindle but last time I received a voucher CHS needed new slippers.

Next time a voucher arrives I will either buy the 2nd Laundry Files book or the 4th in the Shardlake series.

My blog, my language!

If you don't like my language then don't read my blog.

Drowning not waving

Still no respite from being a full time carer for a grumpy git.
That's why I've not posted, I've nothing interesting to say. 
I just whinge on and on and it's boring.
I've now had a message to say the bloody tenant has buggered up the patio doors.
I'm fuming, they are due to leave at the end of January, fuck me, couldn't they have gone a whole month without breaking something!

Fruit and veg box

 This is what was in my box today. Carrots, cabbage, spinach, avocado, apples, oranges and a huge beefsteak tomato. I've already eaten a...