Friday, 25 July 2014

100 Happy Days: Day 94

Playing Mind Games, I finally solved the puzzle I've been stuck on for days.  Also happy that the next game (shown in the photo) is going to be easier - I don't have any problems solving Sudoku.

206/365: Lupins

New flowers on the lupins.

Thursday, 24 July 2014

100 Happy Days: Day 93

Happy to report that my car passed the MOT first time, no work needed!!

205/365: Honeysuckle Berries

The flowers have gone and the honeysuckle is now producing its berries.  These will eventually turn black.

Wednesday, 23 July 2014

100 Happy Days: Day 92

It's been a productive day, getting lots of little things done and out of the way.  Today I had a combination lock fitted to the side gate, the key safe fitted to the back wall of the house, took 10 bags of shredded paper to the recycling centre, ordered a new washer/dryer, booked a theatre ticket, arranged for a carpenter to give me a quote for some work I want done and I've just returned from dropping my car at the garage for its MOT tomorrow.
I've earned a rest, so plan to spend the rest of the day simply relaxing and enjoying the peace and quiet.

Weigh In Wednesday [30]

I've had a better week and have managed to lose the pound I put on last week, so back to a total weight loss of 31 lbs to date.

I'm experimenting with different meal choices this week.  I'd got back into the habit of having snacks which obviously leaves fewer calories for each meal so this week I'm padding out each meal with more fruit and/or veg and eliminating the snacks.  So far it is working - I feel full and haven't wanted to snack. 
Linking with Weigh In Wednesday.

204/365: Pieris Flower Buds

Tuesday, 22 July 2014

100 Happy Days: Day 91

For the past month I haven't been able to get any of the ITV channels - it just said 'bad signal'.  I checked with the company that installed the TV aerial to be told that the heat can sometimes affect the signal; ITV signals are particularly susceptible to this and although they could fit another booster, there was no guarantee that it would work so I decided not to bother.
I switched the TV on today for the first time since the power cut during the storms of last weekend and was happy to see that it is working properly again - all channels displaying properly. I don't watch TV very often but its good to be able to have the full choice of programmes again.

203/365: Pieris

According to the internet, this is a pieris fruit.  I had no idea they had fruits, but apparently they do!

Monday, 21 July 2014

100 Happy Days: Day 90

Catching up with friends ... laughing ... crying ... feeling good!

202/365: Mystery Plant

Does anyone recognise this plant? From the shape of the skeleton leaf I posted here, Ladkyis thinks that it may be Japanese Knotwood.
When the shed was demolished, this pot was found squeezed behind it.  There are two plants in the pot, both of which have probably self seeded.  The other is easily recognised as a bramble but I don't know what this one is - even with watering it hasn't grown much!  If it is the dreaded Japanese Knotwood at least it is contained in a pot and it can be incinerated easily.

Sunday, 20 July 2014

100 Happy Days: Day 89

Have spent an enjoyable hour looking for new recipes. 
Until recently I found cooking for one a bit of a chore, but I seem to have regained my love of cooking and am enjoying trying out new things. 

201/365: Courgette Flower

Plenty of flowers but still no courgettes!

Saturday, 19 July 2014

100 Happy Days: Day 88

Sadly, no band today - rain stopped play!  Happily, the unexpected free time gave me the chance to finish my lesson planning, which now leaves me with a free day on Monday.

200/365: Stormy Weather

Much too wet to play in the garden today!

Friday, 18 July 2014

100 Happy Days: Day 87

Getting ready for tomorrow ... we're taking the children busking in town again.  The pegs?  They're used on windy days to peg the sheet music to the stands so that we can keep playing without the music blowing away!

199/365: Buddleia

This is a beautiful colour (but blogger has again lightened the image so you can't see the true depth of colour!) but not at all what I was expecting.  The label described its colour as 'red' and showed an image of a deep burgundy bloom.  I'm not unhappy with the colour - it is amazing in real life - but the plant will probably have to be moved next year to avoid colour clashes!

Thursday, 17 July 2014

100 Happy Days: Day 86

Back at home playing the piano ... waiting for the temperature to drop before I can venture out into the garden. 

198/365: Skeleton Leaf

This is the mystery plant, found when the shed was removed.  I've no idea what it is so am giving it some loving attention and waiting to see what it reveals!

The Simple Woman's Daybook - Thursday 17th July 2014

Outside my window ... there is bright sunshine.  It's going to be a very hot day and there has been a weather warning about taking care in the heat.
I am thinking ... what I have to do to convert the study into a music room.  The previous owners had built a big cupboard in the corner of the room to house a washing machine and tumble drier.  I need to remove this cupboard and replace the two machine with a combined washer/dryer which will be housed in the kitchen where the dishwasher (I never use) is currently located.  I trying to arrange for one of my nephews to disconnect the machines so that I can take delivery of the washer/dryer.  Then it is a simple case of decorating the room and moving the piano and other instruments in!
I am thankful ... family and friends.  I always seem to say that, but its true.  Not only for their help and support but also for the laughter!
In the kitchen ... I'm trying out new recipes.  This week I am trying a new tofu recipe (I'm never sure if I like tofu, so we'll see!), a new lentil dhal recipe and a new pasta bake recipe. 
I am wearing ... clothes that are now too big for me but I'm enjoying the feeling for a while!  I need to buy some more clothes in a smaller size but am waiting to see how much weight I lose over the summer holidays before I go shopping.
I am creating ... a mess!  Creating the music room means that there are piles of books and things in the living room until I find a new place for them.  Some of it will go back into the music room, some is to be sold and probably some will go to the charity shop.
I am going ... to finish my lesson planning for next term.  I will be teaching much younger children so need to develop some age appropriate teaching aids for them.
I am wondering ... when to retire!  I will be in receipt of my Civil Service Pension in 2015 so need to decide whether to give up working then, to reduce the number of schools or to carry on as I am now for the time being.  I have a year to decide what to do. 
I am reading ... 'The Chemistry of Tears' by Peter Carey which is the monthly read for the new book club I am going to.
I am hoping ...  that I am not heading for any more health issues.  After 30+ year of high blood pressure I now seem to have very low blood pressure.  I have to go for blood tests, reduce my current medication and return to the doctor in six weeks.  I started fainting which is why I went in the first place but I'm half hoping that it was a one-off rogue reading and that things will be back to normal when I see the doctor again.
I am looking forward to ... playing with the band on Saturday.  We are taking the children busking in the town centre ... weather permitting!
I am learning ... to rebuild laptops.  I am practicing on the one that Ced used and if that goes well I will do my own.  They are both running really slowly so I want to get that sorted, link the two computers and also sort out a better back up system. 
Around the house ... I'm decluttering.  Still! I am hoping to sell some of the unwanted items at a couple of car boot sales during the summer break.
I am pondering ... all sorts of things but the biggie is whether I am truly happy with the direction my life is taking.  The jury is out on that one ... I'm generally feeling content with things but I spend too much time alone, and if I do retire will be spending even more time on my own.  The question I am trying to answer is ... am I really unhappy with this situation or am I worrying unnecessarily based on other people's perception of how I should be living my life.
One of my favourite things ... sitting out on the decking as the light fades, just relaxing.
A few plans for the rest of the week ...
  • Friday - lesson planning
  • Saturday - busking with the band
  • Sunday - catching up with family
  • Monday - finish lesson planning
  • Tuesday - project: music room
  • Wednesday - project: music room
A peek into my day ... I'm still at Julie's house looking after their pets but they will be home in a couple of hours.  So I'll catch up on how their graduation ceremony went and then back home for a potter in the garden.  Plus fit in a photo session if I have enough time!
A favourite quote for today ...
"Every morning we are born again.  What we do today is what matters most"- Buddha

Wednesday, 16 July 2014

100 Happy Days: Day 85

I'm pet sitting today and tomorrow.  It graduation time for two of Julie's daughters and they've all gone of to Cardiff for the celebrations.  I'm having a sort of mini break from home, looking after their dog, two cats and the tortoise.

197/365: Clematis 'The President'

Beautiful, but not quite the colour I was expecting (its label shows a much deeper shade of violet/blue).

Weigh In Wednesday [29]

I thought I'd done reasonably well this week but have managed to gain one pound.  Not disastrous, just frustrating, so will have to try a bit harder!
Linking with Weigh In Wednesday