Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

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May 23 – Title Track Day

May 23, 2018

Title Track Day – a day to dig out your favourite albums and play them. The Title Track of the day name refers to the song that shares the same name as the album itself. Title tracks you may have heard of include Hotel California by The Eagles, Heroes by David Bowie and Purple Rain by Prince.

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Grease, socialising and two drunk, singing women (neither of whom were me)

April 24, 2018

It’s been a busy old week at Nelson Towers. The kids went back to school last week (yippee from parents everywhere) so I got the house back to myself. Peace reigned during the hours they weren’t here. It was just me and the dogs and it was lovely. I do love my kids, but sometimes a busy mum just wants a bit of peace (and to watch her television programme without someone interrupting her continuously).

The kids and I also popped along to Helensburgh to see an anniversary showing of Grease at The Tower Arts Centre. The last time I saw Grease in the cinema I was only seven-years-old…just a baby. I loved  it then(although a lot of it went over my head) and I love it still now and it was fab to see it on the big screen. However, the showing was somewhat…what’s the right phrase?…marred by the arrival of two very inebriated women of a certain age. They arrived late, bursting into the auditorium, fumbling with phones to switch on their torch facility to see better with and made straight for the little bar in the main screening room. They bought two bottles of wine each and then clumsily made their way to their seats. In between swigs of wine (from wine glasses…they weren’t that trashy as to actually swig it from the bottle), they then proceeded to outdo each other singing all the songs.

It wasn’t a sing-a-long.

The kids were furious at them for singing. I did tell them (the kids) to move seats, for there were plenty, but they didn’t and put up with it. I just kept on watching and ignoring the women. We saw them again outside the cinema after the film ended clasping on to each other as they tottered down the street in their very high heels.

Note: I still have a huge crush on Danny Zuko and Kennickie! John and Jeff…swoon!

On the Friday, I not only went out for lunch with friends to the Cardross Inn which has newly reopened, but me and the kids also went out for dinner with some other friends to La Barca in Helensburgh, a Spanish tapas bar. The food was good, but the service wasn’t at La Barca which is a shame. I must admit…I still had a fab day. The food and company on both occasions was great and I will be doing it again sometime soon. 🙂

The following day, my parents came to visit along with their dog, Winston. He’s adorable, but mischievous. We took him, the kids and my dogs out a walk to a local beauty spot where Winnie proceeded to prove how mischievous he could be by jumping in every single muddy puddle (despite being told not to) and then, after being told to get out yet another puddle, he first sat down in the water and then lay down. My parents don’t mind him getting wet, but he was going to my sister’s that night because my mum and dad were going out. Wee besom that he is! He was boggin’ by the time we got home and I had to hose both him and Millie (who also loves muddy puddles) down before they could be re-admitted to the house.

On the Sunday, we popped into Glasgow to get the girl’s phone looked at by a certain store with the name of a fruit. It wasn’t charging. The guy was great and cleaned out the portal and checked everything. I was relieved to find out the phone was fine and it was probably the charger. Anyway, long story short the girl somehow talked me into having a look in New Look before we went home and before I knew it I had spent more than £300 on new clothes for her and her brother!! I don’t know what happened. It started with ‘just a look’, went on to ‘Mum I really need a new…’ and ended with me handing over my bank card.

This week has been a bit less busy, although it’s only Tuesday so the week is still young!

Books I am reading…just started The Book Thief by Markus Zusak. I enjoyed the film and the book is really good. I love that it’s Death that’s narrating it.

Right, I am going to end this blog here. Til next time!

Dawn xx

 

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Winnie, Bouncing but No Sign of Tigger

April 3, 2018

Hello. How’s things? Hope all is well with you. I’ve not been around for a couple of weeks because I’ve been busy trying to get the house back in order. The extension is finished. It’s fab. I love it. I will take a pic for you and show you it in the next blog post. Anyway, I’ve been putting up mirrors, clocks and something to hold the brush and mop to the wall. It’s amazing how time consuming this is. I’ve still got some pictures to hang and other wee bits n pieces to do. I will finish it eventually.

We have a young visitor staying with us this week: my parents’ dog Winston who is a Poodle/Bichon Frise cross (a Poochon). He’s adorable and is Casper’s best friend. They are about the same height and age and just love each other> It’s sweet to see them being so pally with each other. Winnie gets on well with the other dogs, but it’s Casper who is his friend. It’s fun having him. He’s a lovely wee dog who barks at everything. Him and Casper are like naughty children. They have teamed up to ‘get up to stuff’ together. I caught them trying to get the lid off the bin the other day. The pair of them and Millie have a twice daily mad dash around the house, barking and play fighting. Earlier tonight, Casper was in the lead and spent a lot of time bouncing off the furniture (I joke not) and barking at Millie and Winnie who were on the floor. Although a small dog, Casper has a mean bounce and actually hurt my legs bouncing from the arm of the chair on to the sofa where I was sitting with my legs stretched out. Bounce, my shins got it. Ouch. I had to move.

Started reading a book that if you are a book lover you will enjoy. It’s The Year of Reading Dangerously: How Reading Fifty Great Books Saved My Life by Andy Miller. I have read only a few of the books on his list, but it has certainly piqued my interest to read some of the ones he recommends. Really enjoying it.

Dog update: all quiet again. For now.

Activities we have done recently: eating Easter Eggs and watching telly and clearing out boxes and putting up stuff. Happy Easter, by the way. Honestly I haven’t been doing anything other than doing stuff around the house. I have been going to my Pilates and Zumba classes, but won’t get to them  in the next couple of weeks as the kids are off for the Easter hols. It’s nice to have long lies and no builders in the house.

Right I am going to stop here now. I’m watching Secrets of the National Trust and they are at Castle Ward which is one of the sets for Game of Thrones…well the outbuildings are. Til next time.

Dawn xx

 

 

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Zumba, Tom and Paddington

March 10, 2018

Hello. How’s things? Hope you’ve had a good week. Just a quick blog today as I have been mainly clearing boxes and putting things away (the extension is nearly finished! Hurrah!).

Decided we all needed a little cheering up after the snowy weather last week so have put in some nice spring photos to illustrate this piece.

So apart from putting things away, I’ve been busy doing a lot of running around: taking the dogs for a walk, doing the school runs, food shopping etc. Just the usual stuff.

However, I did start a Zumba class this week and it was fantastic. It took place in a local church hall, lasted 45 minutes and nearly killed me, but I felt fantastic afterwards. There were no breaks, it was full on from the word go, but we were encouraged to stop and have a break and a drink when we needed it. I came away feeling like I’d had a good workout, sweaty and smiling. I love dancing and Latino music so it was right up my street. Going next week.

We watched a couple of films this week: Thor Ragnarok and Paddington 2. Loved them both for different reasons…Thor because it was funny and full of action and Tom Hiddleston was there being all mischievous as Loki. I loved Paddington too because, well it’s Paddington Bear and it was a lovely film and a great one for the family. The boy loved it.

Have you been watching the documentaries about the real Vikings? I think it’s on History and it’s really interesting. They have historians, archeologists and experts on talking about the culture and history of the Vikings along with some of the cast of the series The Vikings. It is fascinating stuff and I would recommend it.

Right, am going to finish up here. Got more box emptying to do. Til next time.

Dawn xx

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Where have I been?

February 9, 2018

Hello. How are you? Sorry I’ve not been around lately. I have been so busy over the last couple of months that I haven’t had the time or energy to write my blog. I’ve basically been busy sorting out things for the extension (which is getting there, I am hoping it will be finished within the next three weeks), home life and I’ve started an OU course in English Literature and Creative Writing. Added to that, we are currently living in extremely trying living conditions…I have boxes of stuff everywhere, I can’t access certain things (my desk for one) and normal living is difficult, especially when I can’t find anything. We don’t have a shower – but we do have a bath – and my kitchen has only this week gotten worktops and, more importantly, heating.  And it has been freezing downstairs. Luckily  I can shut the heat in the living room and have been camping out there during the day. However, there are worst things and this ‘pain’ will not last much longer…I can see the light at the end of the tunnel.

Anyway, apart from living in a house that looks like a tornado has blown through it what with the boxes of stuff and building detritus and dust everywhere, we are doing great. Life is trundling along and we are looking forward to the spring. My garden is a hellhole – it served as a storage facility for building materials (front and back) – but it will recover over the coming months. Despite the stuff everywhere, spring flowers are already showing their little spears of green and I’m looking forward to their annual show.  The dogs, in case you are wondering, are still as mischievous and fun as always. Our guinea pig is still hail and hearty… he must be well over eight now, which is ANCIENT in guinea pig terms. He is fat, bright eyed and full of life. I wonder what his secret is!!

What else has been happening? Well, I’ve just finished binge watching Burn Notice, which is a US show about a burned spy trying to clear his name. I loved it. Can’t believe I missed it the first time around. Now that that is over, I am looking for another tv series to binge watch. Any suggestions?

Also read Kit Marlowe’s Dr Faustus as part of my OU course. It was great, better than I thought it would be. I always like Shakespeare, but had never read or seen a Marlowe play. Thoroughly enjoyed it. I have it as a DVD so am going to watch it soon…probably next week when the kids are still languishing in bed (they are off school next week). They’ll only moan if I watch it when they are around.

I am toying with the idea of having a no spend month…that’s a month where you only spend money on essentials and save on stuff you don’t need like eating out or sweets or magazines. I think this family could do with a bit of self control with money… my kids seem to think I have loads of cash to spend on them. I don’t, but that doesn’t stop them asking for money for sweets. Yes, the idea of having a no spend month is looking even more attractive the more I think about it. The idea comes from some of the frugality blogs I read especially Living Well Spending Less by the splendidly named Ruth Soukup…I read Ruth’s book about spending less and it has some great tips.

Anyway, that’ll be something for when the extension is done.

Right, on that note, I am going to say adieu until next time. See you soon…promise!

Dawn xxx

 

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Seasons Greetings

December 25, 2017

Merry Christmas everyone! Hope you have a great day.

Dawn xxx

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Eggnog Day (and also Christmas Eve)

December 24, 2017

I have to confess I have never had eggnog, but I love the idea of it so today we are celebrating Eggnog Day (and Christmas Eve). You can buy it in shops, but I am sure home-made eggnog is far superior to shop bought. Here’s a wee recipe for you to try (I certainly will be):

You need: 3 ½ cups of milk; 1 ½ teaspoons of vanilla extract; 1 teaspoon of ground cinnamon; a cinnamon stick; a pinch of ground cloves; six egg yolks; ¾ cup of granulated sugar; one cup rum (optional); one cup double cream; ¼ teaspoon of ground nutmeg.

Method: put the milk, vanilla extract, cinnamon, cinnamon stick and clove into a medium sized saucepan over a low heat. Bring it to a slow boil. Once it starts to boil, take the saucepan off the heat and let the cinnamon stick steep for two minutes before removing. Place the egg yolks and sugar in a mixer and whisk until pale and fluffy. With the mixer on low, add the hot milk mixture to the yolks and mix. Put the mixture back into the saucepan and heat on medium for about five minutes, stirring continuously.  Don’t let boil. Once thick and creamy, take off the heat and allow to cool a little. Stir in the rum (if using), double cream and nutmeg. Allow to fully cool before putting in the fridge overnight.  To serve: place in nice glasses and sprinkle with cinnamon. For a non-alcoholic eggnog leave out the rum.

 

Merry Christmas everyone!!

 

 

 

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