Thursday, 30 September 2010

Lighting up and late lunches, dresses and Downton Abbey


Apologies for not visiting your blogs yet, I haven't managed to get to any at all this week - just too much going on, and something had to give (see below!) I'm looking forward to a big catch up at the weekend though, I've missed you all xx

Here are some things that I learnt on 28th September:
  • It's lovely to meet someone who loves what they do so much that they light up when they talk about it :-)
  • I so enjoy my German class! I've missed it over the summer!
  • So many people have sent me good wishes about my own new class - it warms my heart :-)
  • There are now 19 people taking my class!!
  • Lunch just isn't going to happen at lunchtime on Tuesdays...
  • They enjoyed it! They had a good time! They're so pleased with the finished projects they're taking home! Yay!!
  • Ah, lunch tastes good even if - or especially if?! - you don't get to eat it till 3.15pm...
  • Parents spend an average of £5213 on a baby during pregnancy and its first year!! Flippin' 'eck!! Someone must be spending an awful lot on their kiddy because I spent a lot less than that...
  • The start and finish times for Brownies and Scouts are staggered just enough that I'll be out for most of the evening dropping off and collecting The Children
  • Yay, our friend's son goes to this Scout group! We can share lifts!
  • If you're in a hurry to make and eat dinner, having pudding first can help speed things along...
  • The people who run Scouts, Cubs, Beavers, Brownies, Guides, Rainbows, etc are just *wonderful*
  • The Boy loved Scouts :-)
  • Hereford lost, yet AGAIN! They're struggling so much :-(
And then we have the 29th September:
  • Even after some early nights, I am SO tired :-(
  • Something has to give.... And work, The Doctor and The Children must come first. Sadly that means I shall have to step back from my blog visits for a few days :-( And that a couple of emails sitting in my inbox will need to wait a little longer for replies - sorry friends, I haven't forgotten you xx
  • I like wearing dresses for work - and I like finding dresses in the sale at Asda :-)
  • Oh yes, got to love a sale! Especially when you can find a cool hat for just £1!
  • Summer is definitely over - as the combination of rain and fallen leaves shows...
  • I like this Downton Abbey programme! :-)
  • The Boy gets so silly when he has a friend over....
  • Some people seem to have the knack of phoning at inconvenient times!!
Nearly done - one more day of blogging my LSNED, and then I can print off the second batch of photos for the paper project. I still haven't seen any more digi templates but I'll wait till Shimelle officially signs off the class in case any appear; if not, I'll cycle through the ones we do have. But I'm not putting any pressure on myself to get the project finished by any particular date - it will happen, some time, and that's good enough.

Meanwhile, MeTAV moves into its third week - that's been on a back burner for me too! - and Blogtoberfest starts tomorrow. I may rely on Project 365 to get me through the latter ;-)

How are you all, blog friends? I've missed you! Looking forward to catching up with you soon xx

261 of 365


18th September - the weekend - which means I can turn the alarm off, yay!!

Um - the healthy eating resolutions are still there, honestly, and I am trying to eat more fruit and veg and generally make healthier choices, but as I look back over recent Project 365 pics (and those that are due to publish soon) I've noticed that a fair few treats have crept in, oops.... So I shall keep an eye on that and maybe you'll notice an improvement in the food pics after, say, day 268ish?! Meanwhile, here's the choc chip brioche I snacked on on Day 261:

Wednesday, 29 September 2010

The sea, sleep and smiling at dogs


A bit more catching up with the things I've been learning! Here's 26th September:
  • I need more sleep!! And it's my own silly fault that I'm so tired today...
  • I love the sea. I love water - lakes, rivers, streams, waterfalls (rain slightly less so, admittedly) but most of all I love the sea. I could just gaze at it for hours. I love it when it's calm and peaceful and tranquil, and the sun sparkles on the surface. I love it when it's restless and sullen, with white-capped waves breaking the slate-grey heaving mass of water. I love it when it's tempestuous and noisy with waves crashing angrily on the shore before sucking back pebbles and sand into the depths. The sea soothes me, invigorates me, inspires me, restores me. I love the sea
  • Hereford lost - again :-(
  • A brief exchange with a stranger can lift your day :-)
  • I still smile at dogs...
  • Lots about the Jewish Shabbat observances
  • The blessing of having this time with these women
  • There's a lot of food left!
  • The beauty of God's creation
  • It's good to be home :-)
  • I'm too tired to do my work properly this evening.... (Thank goodness I'm not teaching till tomorrow afternoon!)
And here's 27th September, which gets me back on track:
  • Bleh. Need a few more early nights to catch up after the weekend!
  • Even though I got up 5 minutes early, we're still going to be late to school. Kids!!
  • Today will be a bit of a struggle....
  • I need to fill in a tricky form for work. I'm not quite sure what it is I'm supposed to do
  • Hooray for helpful colleagues!
  • I don't actually need to do much photocopying today, that's good news
  • Year 3 still need a lot of time to do the ICT tasks properly, but I'm adjusting better to that now
  • I hate injustice. It makes me angry, and it upsets me
  • I'm going to need to take a lot of stuff with me for my papercrafts class!

260 of 365


Back to my Bible study group on 17th September :-)

And lunch was some ham and cheese in a wholemeal pitta, lightly warmed in the toaster (Plan A: put into toaster so cheese melts; Plan B: realise that cheese will run out of hole in pitta if it melts fully and may wreck toaster so hastily press cancel and have warm cheese rather than melted cheese!)

Tuesday, 28 September 2010

I had it all planned in my head...


...schedule my Wordle for Saturday, then do a double LSNED post on Sunday evening when I got back from my weekend away, ready to get back on track with my usual daily 'learnings' from Monday.

I didn't allow for the crushing tiredness and the extremely busy couple of days I've just had.....

Ah well, not to worry. For the next couple of days I'll do two days' worth of LSNED at a time, till I've caught up. At least, that's the new plan. But maybe I won't - and that's OK too! See how I'm learning to let go of my perfectionism and OCD about completing things on time?! ;-)

OK, so here are some things I learnt on 24th September:
  • Yes, I thought this might be the case. It's tricky to keep up with two online classes (LSNED and MeTAV) at once, while also doing Project 365, and of course Scrap Your Day is on the 25th. I think maybe I should focus on LSNED till the end of September, and then get on with MeTAV. That would be sensible
  • On the other hand, here are the instructions for cutting the patterned paper to size for MeTAV! Forget common sense and logic....
  • I love trimming pieces of patterned paper to size :-)

  • Check the instructions, then check again, and once more for luck....

  • It is SO MUCH lighter in here now those trees have gone!!

  • I like my new CD :-)

  • It's such fun to be silly with my friends...

  • ...and to stay up late chatting (even if it means I'll be tired in the morning!)
My camera ate a couple of photos from the 24th :-( My Project 365 pics were OK, luckily. I shall need to think through which lesson to scrap from the day though, as the photo I planned to use has vanished....

And on the 25th I learnt:
  • On the weekend away, I like to get up early so I don't miss anything - even after only 5 hours sleep!
  • I love this group. I love that we're so relaxed together, we're able to tease each other and be silly, yet be very serious with each other when we need to
  • Lots about blessing

  • Coffee!! I need coffee!!

  • I love the mixture of company and quiet during this weekend

  • We've brought a LOT of food....!

  • More about blessing, particular God's blessing to us

  • It's lovely to have so many yummy things to try...

  • ...though maybe my tummy would prefer that I picked one thing and stuck to it!

  • All but one of the items I listed on eBay have sold - and some for really good prices! *happy dance*

  • It's fun to play on the Wii as a group - even when there aren't enough remotes to go around!

  • 5 bottles of nail varnish open at once in a room means that room will smell quite strongly of nail varnish...

  • We're a bunch of very competitive women!!

More details about my weekend will follow at some point, not least because I was away over the 25th so my Scrap Your Day project will include lots of photos from the Saturday. I'm not sure quite when I'll post them, though - I don't think I've even shared August's pics yet, and I'm way behind on actually making the pages! But I'll get there eventually :-)

Oh, and I must thank you for your lovely, supportive, encouraging messages about my papercrafts class. It went really well and I'm very much looking forward to next week. The best part was when one of the women (who had been a bit nervous beforehand) came up to me at the end and said she was really proud of herself and loved the cards she'd created :-)

259 of 365


16th September: A shopping trip to pick up supplies for my papercrafts class! And in fact, the class starts today (the day this post will publish), how's that for timing?!

Lunch was wholemeal pitta bread and black olive tapenade, yum :-)

Monday, 27 September 2010

258 of 365


A slightly different way to document that 15th September was an Asda shopping day! I do like it when the shopping comes to a round figure.... :-)

For supper that night I had some toast. I like the end of the loaf toasted :-) You'll notice that I had it buttered though, I don't always have my toast dry!

Sunday, 26 September 2010

Hello, friends :-)

I'm back from my weekend away having had a fabulous time, eating lots of treats, being very silly, staying up too late, talking a LOT(!), typing up some journaling for MeTAV, taking many photos (including those for Scrap Your Day), and growing closer to my wonderful friends and to God. It was a *great* weekend :-)

But now I'm absolutely knackered!! And I have a busy few days ahead.... So I will catch up with you all soon, both by sharing my LSNED lessons and my photos here, and by visiting your blogs to see what you've been up to - but it may not happen for a couple of days. (Project 365 posts will publish as normal though!)

Speak soon xx

257 of 365


14th September was an open evening at one of our local secondary schools. I spotted this on the wall and loved both the quotation and the way it was presented :-)

Costco do delicious soft and chewy cinnamon and raisin bagels - we'd picked some up on Sunday so I breakfasted on one on the 14th:

Saturday, 25 September 2010

Weekly Wordle: 38 of 365

Slightly late posting this because of the LSNED posts, but this is the Wordle for the week up to Thursday. I'm pleased to see forecast enough Holtz's, and slightly surprised by today horrible work, because actually I had a really good day at work on Thursday! It may indeed be true that my camera [is] going, and salad? Better stuffing.... And yes, I'd say that a cocktail [is] possible :-) Fortunately I don't have any ridiculous glasses, which is just as well as it appears they make [you] feel older? Wouldn't want that, now, would we? And I was so thrilled that busy Mario was able to take [a] little time to make sure I'd get [a] message yesterday (well, it was yesterday at the time of creating this Wordle, so that works for me...)

This Wordle seems a bit more random than most, somehow!!

256 of 365


I didn't get confirmation of my place till the following day, but 13th September was definitely 'Tim Holtz Day' - the day I watched the clock till they went on sale, spent a frantic half hour putting my order through, then kept checking my email to see if my order was confirmed!

Lunch that day included a toasted pitta, which I then buttered on the outside to save faffing around trying to cut it open :-)

Friday, 24 September 2010

Out of stock and old favourites


Lessons learnt on 23rd September:
  • Year 3 haven't used calculators before, oops! Need to teach them what to do!
  • I do love teaching and my classes at the moment are lovely :-)
  • Gosh, some kids aren't lacking in confidence!! (A 5-year-old marched into the middle of the staffroom - without knocking - at lunchbreak, to announce that 'a little one' had been bumped in the playground!)
  • There's a rather higher cost than we expected in increasing our 10-user deal to a full site licence for RM Maths (an individualised learning software programme we use in school) - don't think we can justify that extra money, even though it's an excellent resource
  • Lots of useful information regarding the application process to secondary schools
  • What The Boy will be learning this year
  • The new reading group The Children have joined lasts an hour - oops, thought it was 1/2 an hour and that I'd have more time at home to get things done...
  • Rats, the cable on this is slightly damaged so I can't really sell it on eBay :-(
  • Darn it!! Some of the craft items I ordered for my class have been discontinued! I thought I had everything I needed but clearly I need to do some more shopping....
  • Aaargh, not enough time.....
  • It's fun to cook an old favourite recipe :-)
  • Our minister is happy to baptise The Boy (who has decided for himself that he would like to be baptised)
  • It's nice to have a pastoral chat with our minister! :-)
Two other things before I finish:

The cats lol! Well, one of the little surprises I was planning a couple of days ago involved a dear friend and some cupcakes. Unfortunately the friend wasn't in when I popped round with the cupcakes so I left them on her doorstep. For various reasons I wasn't able to let her know they were there, and by the time she's found them, her neighbourhood cats had found them first..... But I wasn't to be defeated (and luckily I had a couple of cupcakes left still) so I this time I left them with her neighbour and she got them safely :-)

The other is that the reason I was cooking my spinach and mushroom lasagne yesterday is that this weekend is my annual weekend away with other women from my church, yay!! The only downside is the lack of internet access, but I think I can cope for a weekend.... ;-) So, no LSNED update tomorrow, but I've scheduled my Weekly Wordle to keep you company while I'm gone. Have a great weekend, everyone xx

255 of 365


I did the reading in church on 12th September. It was also the first Sunday that Sunday Club started back after the summer, and hence the first opportunity to fully enjoy and appreciate the fact that we were no longer the co-ordinators and so didn't need to get there early, check that all our leaders were there, welcome new parents, make sure all the resources were set up.... Etc! Being on the reading rota was perfect as it helped me to appreciate that I was fully involved in the service and didn't need to think about the SC practicalities at all :-)

In the afternoon we went to Costco, and The Doctor picked up lots of treats, including some pain au chocolat, yum...

Thursday, 23 September 2010

Cameras and cats


Another day with hardly any photos - but see below.... Anyway, here's what I learnt yesterday:
  • My finger feels slightly sore. I hope it's just getting used to the ring, and not preparing for another eczema flare-up
  • Rats. One of the little surprises I planned yesterday got slightly sabotaged
  • Hang on - the photo I just took isn't on my camera card! So the one I thought I'd taken the other day and then couldn't find so I assumed I hadn't actually taken, I probably did take after all. I wonder what other photos have been lost? We need a new camera...
  • I am NOT going to be defeated by a bunch of cats!!
  • Gosh, postage for certain items to certain areas can work out a bit pricey! But it's worth it :-)
  • You can never predict whether Asda will be busy. This time last week, it was packed; today, it's almost empty!
  • Sometimes the trolley will be full of healthy items - sometimes it just won't....
  • Yes, it's a good idea to walk to school when I can. Better for the environment, better for our fitness. But make sure you actually leave enough time to get to school without stressing!!
  • And check the forecast - it's all very well making sure you always have an umbrella with you, but The Children won't be too impressed if you forget their macs ;-)
  • The Children's school photo has turned out well, yay!! Especially as it's the last one of the two of them together in primary school :-)
  • The Boy makes funny noises at the dentist.... He sounds like a cross between a guinea pig and a chipmunk!
  • It's silly to struggle on with loose glasses when they're so quick and easy to get fixed
  • Oh my gosh, I got a direct message on Twitter from Mario, Tim Holtz's assistant!!

254 of 365


I took the car in for a service on 11th September - after many years of having older cars fail their MOT, it was great to not even worry about an MOT with this one!

The recipe jar told me to try oriental salmon with noodles for dinner. It was nice and I may make it again, but I'm not sure I'm ready to add it to my recipe blog yet.

Wednesday, 22 September 2010

Sometimes lessons are difficult


A mixed bag on 21st September:
  • It is nice to have a quiet day amidst the craziness of work, meetings, open evenings etc - though I would still rather have spent time with my friend if it had been possible!
  • It's fun to plan little surprises for people :-)
  • Some parents are prepared to drive and park dangerously just to get that little bit closer to the school gate
  • Sometimes meetings are ridiculous!! I know we have to do and say certain things so that they can be minuted and documented properly, but good grief...
  • This is it. This is the school we want. The Boy loves it and we both feel really good about it. This simplifies things in one way, but also puts the pressure on in another
  • Sometimes when a friend is hurting there's very little you can do. You want to sort things out for them. You want to just take away that pain. It's horrible feeling so helpless. Yes, you can be there for them, for that doesn't feel like very much sometimes
  • Pray. God can help when no-one else can

253 of 365


10th September was the training day where I picked up lots of useful and inspiring ideas, and won a sweet for answering a question correctly! ;-)

Lunch was provided - a wide variety of different sandwiches (I had turkey and stuffing with salad, prawn cocktail and tuna mayonnaise). And why yes, that is indeed a jammy dodger you see in the background next to my cup of tea!

Tuesday, 21 September 2010

Icing and ICT


Here's what I learnt on 20th September:
  • Oops! I can't rely on the radio news bulletin being on time as a cue to get up...
  • Interesting. My coffee of choice at Costa now appears to be a Fairtrade espresso rather than a small skinny Fairtrade gingerbread latte....
  • My ring finger is now size N (but they only have P in stock of the ring I want - and a slightly looser fit is more comfortable and less likely to aggravate my eczema)
  • Don't try to do too much in the morning before working in the afternoon!!
  • I like dressing up smart for work :-)
  • Aaaaargh ICT!! lol! Teaching ICT is an interesting variation on the Maths I teach most, but relying on technology can add to the grey hairs!!
  • A class that you teach once a week in the morning can feel like a totally different class when you teach them in the afternoon
  • It's so nice to be wearing a wedding ring again :-)
(My eczema had flared up so badly that I couldn't wear my wedding, engagement and eternity rings :-( I wondered if maybe it was partly because they were too small - hence the trip today to find a cheap, larger size band as an experiment to see if I can tolerate wearing it. If it works, I'll look into having my 'real' rings enlarged)
  • I still can't make pretty cupcakes!! I made up my own icing recipe and it was too soft to hold the piped shape.... But hey, they taste good so who cares if they don't look beautiful?
  • Oh dear, I wasn't too keen on the school we went to look round this evening, and neither was The Boy. It doesn't feel like the right place for him. But we didn't have much choice to start with and now we have even fewer schools we like. Gosh, this process is stressful!