About Me

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Worcester, Worcestershire, United Kingdom
Born in the year of the Coronation, I'm a Baby Boomer. In April of this year I decided I too would have a Diamond Jubilee celebration and completely change my life and that of my Husband's in the process

Thursday, 29 March 2007

Nearly Easter Hols!!!!

I’ve been getting very lax about updating this Journal. Life has been busy and I like to sit and write a complete entry and don’t often have an hour or so to spare.

First some moans about AOL. Since I had a recent connectivity update I keep losing my connection and the only way to sort it is to turn of my Wireless Router Thingummyjig for 30 seconds and start again, this has cost me hours, even on the PC in the office, so it’s obviously nothing to do with a Wireless connection. If this is the way forward………

It's been a horrible week Navywise. First those two poor sailors killed in an explosion on their submarine, whilst under the ice cap. The one lad was from  Halesowen, which is where I grew up and he went to my Dad's Grammar School. He was planning to leave the Royal Navy to get married, that is so sad. This of course worried me because of Simon's job.

As for the 15 held captive by the Iranians, well I won't say much but it's also very upsetting, although this is a scenario that is unlikely to happen to Simon but I do hope they are soon released. Men and woman alike.

Our lovely student teacher, Karina left on Friday, she has been with us for about two months. Talk about a baptism of fire! She’s had to teach my class, which everyone is agreed is the worst class in living memory. I’ve had to take her to one side at times and reassure her that not all children are like this. I bought her a gift and gave her a card and she bought me the most beautiful, soft , pink, leather make-up bag, with a note thanking me for my help.

On Saturday Mike and I had one of our trips out, where we go somewhere that we don’t know. We decided to head for the Staffordshire Moorlands, which we’d heard of but didn’t know where to find them. After finding some places in Staffordshire on the map that looked rural and had ‘Moor’ in the place name (always a good clue) we headed up the M6 and made our way to Cheadle. There was a sign when we got there telling us it was in the Staffordshire Moorlands so we felt we were off to a good start.

We had a very good lunch while we were there, which could have been even better. I ordered Staffordshire Oatcakes with Bacon & Cheddar Cheese. The Oatcakes are a type of soft pancake, which I’ve never had before. I still haven’t had them as they’d sold out!

There is an old church at Cheadle which was decorated by Pugin in the 19thC. Now Inormally like his work but strewth! What was he on when he did this place. There isn’t half an inch of stone work that hasn’t been intricately decorated. I normally love the feel of old churches but this one was so busy I couldn’t wait to get outside, it was giving me a headache!


After lunch we headed out into the Moorlands. The part we visited didn’t have too many Moors, more Hills and Vales but how pretty it was. Oakamoor is lovely and we were delighted to find it had the remains of a railway station , well, just a platform really, and the old line is now a public footpath. So many old stations have been converted into family homes, it’s a crying shame that this one was demolished.

Oakamoor Station

And this is it today.



 You can walk along the line to Alton Village but we only walked part of the way and then returned to the car to continue driving along the Churnet Valley.

We stopped for tea and toasted teacakes at an old, converted lodge now know as the Ramblers Retreat and then continued our drive. Just a minute later we were amazed by the view in front of us, it was as if we had strayed into France or Germany with the sight before us. If you’ve ever been to Alton Towers, to the Amusement Park, well here is the other side of Alton Towers.


Monday was a lovely day and I returned from school with a sense of determination to sort out the garden, which has really got away from us over the last couple of years. There was this Pyracantha hedge which had got to ten feet tall and three feet deep. I spent 4 hours trying to cut it back and managed to reduce it’s depth by half and cut a lot of it back to a manageable 6 foot height. This resulted in a lot of scratches, asthey have the most evil thorns and I finally gave up when I managed to puncture a vein, which was a bit frightening when I had blood spurting everywhere and I was on my own at the time. I sorted that out but it meant I was finished for the day.

Tuesday Mike was at home and he had instructions to finish what I’d started, which he did. But, as usual he had managed to acquire a ‘life threatening’ injury. With Mike that’s a compulsory after effect of any hard work. (Sigh) Well, this time he thought he’d broken a finger. I was pretty sure he hadn’t, so gave him some pain-killers with the suggestion that if it got any worse he should go to hospital.

Yesterday morning it was worse and so off to A & E he went. I said I thought it was Gout and he needed to have his wedding ring cut off. He rang me later to say it was Gout and he’d had to have his wedding ring cut off….I think I’m in the wrong profession.

So does that mean I’m not married anymore?

I look like I’ve got Chickenpox as all my scratches have come up in Hives, as a reaction to my Pyracantha piercings, so I’ve had to buy some Anti- Histamine cream. Who says gardening is a pleasure?

Talking of gardening, this may mean nothing to some people but I got home yesterday to find a message on my answer phone from Chris Beardshaw, the TV Gardener, first really seen on TV for his Flying Gardener series. Well it’s not every day you get a TV Celeb on your answer phone is it?


Anyone want his mobile number? ......Of course, he didn’t want me, it was Mike he was after.

It was Mike’s Mum’s birthday today and he went to see her for lunch. After his 60th birthday present from her of a Flying Lesson, I thought maybe we could get her a Bungee Jump but Mike decided Gardening Vouchers were maybe a better option.

Spent three hours this afternoon making Chocolate, Rice Krispy Nests, each with three, different coloured, sugar coated eggs on top for the whole year group, that's 50 in total. Just let one of them say "I don't like those!"

Catherine, Flo and Isabella are in Tunisia for two weeks, I haven't heard from them so am assuming that no news is good news, although how Catherine will cope without talking to me for a fornight is something I can't imagine. LOL. 

Think that’s about it for now but before I go I want to wish the J Landers who are currently having some major health issues all the best and may all their test results be the best they could possibly be.

Linda. xx

PS I have some other pictures from Saturday and should be viewed larger. I was going to put them at the top but guess what....there's an error!


Saturday, 10 March 2007

Nearly Summer

This silly entry was inspired by the photos sent to me by a friend. It's done as an open letter but Sue, you know it means YOU!

Dear Friend,

It'll soon be summer and I think it's time we came out of our winter caves, met up for lunches and walks again.

Time to get out and see the sights!

Picture 002


Talk about losing a few pounds, so we can slip back into those skimpy summer dresses

Picture 001

And just have a good gossip.


Linda x.


On A Roll!

Yes, I know I did an entry last night but while it seems to be working I'm posting the photos from my last German trip. Not many as I was mostly in bed, or lazing around in my PJ's.

Isabella was talking to me on the phone this morning, she said 'Ba Ba Ba, which means I I've just done a wee on my potty. Catherine is like me and doesn't agree with this modern rubbish of waiting for them to be ready for potty training. She is doing what I did, as soon as they can sit up, pop them on the potty whenever their nappy is changed and before and after baths. It is a fun time which Isabella enjoys as you can talk and do nursery rhymes etc. Sitting there actually encourages them 'to go' and there is no pressure to go at all, just praise if they do. Without realising it they become potty trained and both mine chose to be out of nappies when they were one year old.

I'm going to a Fund raising evening tonight for the Homeless Hostel. There is to be a 'Finger Buffet' I hate that! I find the fingernails get stuck in my teeth.

Just one more silly entry in a minute and then that's me done for the week.

Have a good weekend.



Friday, 9 March 2007

Finally I have Photos!

I don’t seem very inclined to make new entries on here lately, probably to do with this virus I’m still recovering from. My GP says, it wasn’t Flu! If that wasn’t Flu then I hope I never get the real thing, I don’t know how I can have been any more ill than that  without being hospitalised. He also said that everyone that has had it has taken a minimum of four weeks to recover, including himself. Don’t think that makes me feel any better.


I realised the other day, that while I was bedridden, Mike had to go to our local pub and collect our quarter share  of the beef that we buy every year. A quarter of a cow is quite a bit and this is excellent value as it’s organic beef and is hung properly, for a long time, so is always top quality.


Normally we put the spare freezer on in the garage, which is only used for this purpose, parties and Christmas. Prior to my collapse, I had emptied the freezer in the kitchen, as much as possible, just to see if I could get it all in there.


Well, on the night Mike collected it, I just let him get on with it, I didn’t even  go in the kitchen to have a look. My only inclination to leave my bed was to answer the occasional calls of nature.


Mike was very pleased that he’d managed to fit all the beef in to the kitchen freezer and although there was a faint warning bell in the back of my head, I wasn’t too worried.


Now I am back at the helm in the kitchen and the time came to try some of this beef.


Think about this. You have about a hundred pounds of beef, all nicely bagged up into different cuts. You FILL the freezer drawers with this, soft, pliable substance and switch to fast freeze. What happens? Well, of course, the beef freezes and becomes hard.


Now you want to open a drawer, which is very heavy and jammed to the top, so that you have to force it open. You need to find the  particular cut you want……roasting, steak , mince, or stewing. What you can’t do is have anything other than what’s on top because if you go any further down there is no way you are going to get it all back in exactly the same position and the result is, you wont be able to shut the drawer. So until we’ve managed to reduced the quantity slightly, it’s a case of having whatever is on top. Ah well, another valuable life lesson.


I’ve had an email from my Union, UNISON. They offered me a two day course aimed specifically at women, to teach them more about the workings of the Union and how to increase our assertiveness. It meant staying in the 4 Star, White Hotel in town with all accommodation and food paid for. I was quite tempted by this, as I could do with being more assertive but then I decided I couldn’t be bothered.


Last Saturday we  had another of our days out in Wales. The weather was beautiful, which was surprising, as it had rained none stop throughthe night, with the result  that the brook had covered the bottom hundred feet of our garden. We had discussed moving the chickens back down there the day before but I felt the ground was still too wet, well it certainly was on Saturday! We had lunch in Trecastle, at The Castle coaching Inn and then drove across the Black Mountains and Brecon Beacons to see some of the stunning Welsh scenery. We saw some lovely, very healthy looking ponies on the mountain tops. We then carried on down to the coast


On the way home, we stopped at a supermarket, it was dark by then. As we left the car park ,the car in front of us began leaving a trail of bits of paper. The passenger, an adult male, was ripping up waste paper in the car and throwing it out of the window. As I had the camera, I thought I would take a photo of this, for no other reason than to frighten him to death when the flash went off from my camera as we were only a few feet behind. That seemed to have the desired effect. I bet he’s still waiting for a letter. lol


Tuesday we took the Year Group to a new, purpose built, Hindu Temple, at Tividale in The Black Country. It is the largest in Europe and isn’t finished yet, there are still some smaller buildings to complete and the landscaping is only partly done but it will be a wonderful sight to see in a couple of years.


The people there couldn’t have done more for us, providing us with a guide and Priests who performed blessings at different parts of the Temple. Afterwards they produced different rices and poppadoms to sample, or fruit for those less adventurous. All for no charge at all. It was a magical trip and some of the parents have been saying how much the children loved it. I’m so glad I suggested we went there and for me a real bonus was, my beloved Rowley Hills, which is where so many of my Ancestors came from, were there as a backdrop to the site. The twins thought we were really going to India for the day and after going, I think they still believe that’s where we went.


Driving back from school, there is one of those Shop-a-Check places, were you can cash a cheque for a fee when you run out of money until your next pay-day, or pawn your jewellery. It’s very bright and modern looking, with large posters of glamorous looking women in the windows. Isn’t it funny that none of their customers look like that? Wonder why that is?


The wedding venue has now been booked for October and last night I booked the photographer. The dress has been bought. Only another seven months to get through, is there any possibility those seven months can be plain sailing?……….. Hmmmm!