Monday, 31 January 2011

Snuggle Day!

Yesterday (Sunday 30th January) was Snuggle Day!

I snuggled in bed til 11!  This wasn't planned, I distinctly remember my alarm going off, reaching out and grabbing my phone (also my alarm) and pulling it into bed with me - next thing I know it's an hour and a half later and I'm only awake because I rolled over my phone!  Rosie and Jim had obviously given up all hope of getting any food, they'd abandoned all attempts to wake me and gone back downstairs - I'm sure it was only a matter of time before they assumed I'd died and started eating me.

The trusty sofa duvet came out again and the day (what was left of it!) was spent snuggling under it watching films - result!


Sunday, 30 January 2011

Experimental Cooking Day!

Yesterday (Saturday 29th January) was Experimental Cooking Day!

Experiment #1 - Hot Dogs on Car Engine
Hot dogs and onions wrapped in foil and placed on engine during drive to Fewston Reservoir, arrive at reservoir, retrieve hot dogs and onions, eat.

Believe it or not this has been a popular method of cooking for many years - when I first researched this I came across a newspaper article where the reporter had cooked an entire Christmas dinner (and warmed the mince pies on the cooling engine while he ate the main course) on the engine of a classic car but I can't find it now!

There's even an entire recipe book (Manifold Destiny) devoted to the art of engine block cooking!

Experiment #2 - Chicken in Dishwasher
Chicken breast wrapped in foil and steam cooked in the dishwasher

This kind of makes sense when you consider that it can get as hot in your dishwasher as it does in your oven, decided not to take the opportunity to use the dishwasher (for the first time) to actually wash dishes at the same time!

Experiment #3 - Salad in Washing Machine
Salad and dressing placed in bag and placed in washing machine for spin cycle

This was Brian's idea - I should come with a sign attached to me warning people to be aware that if they suggest something that smacks of lunacy I may very well give it a go!

Experiment #4 - Egg in Kettle
Egg placed in kettle, boil

Ok, so apparently it's not wise to consider cooking baked beans in your kettle - really?  Well, who'd've guessed?!


Um, well, experiment #1 didn't exactly go to plan!  Ideally the food should be placed on the manifold but we couldn't get to the manifold in John's car, in fact, we were really limited in finding anywhere at all suitable to position the food - I'm thinking perhaps it would have been wise to check this out beforehand!  So, we ended up sliding the foil parcels against the radiator and extending our journey to go as far as Pateley Bridge. 

We arrived at Pateley Bridge and inspected the food - stone cold.  Although, I'm convinced one end of one of the packages was just about starting to get warm, honest!  A quick trip to 'the oldest sweet shop' to pick up some proper midget gems (they should be hard (Lions)!) and kop kops then back home to cook the hot dogs the traditional way before we all wasted away!

Experiments 2, 3 and 4 were pretty much a success, the chicken was a little too pink in the middle for any of us to risk actually eating any of it but the egg was boiled to perfection (we had visions of having to pick bits of egg out of the kettle for hours!) and the salad was well mixed (if a little warm!)!


Friday, 28 January 2011

Captain's Log Supplemental!

It appears I missed a power ballad, it only came to my attention for the first time today.  I thought it could be some sort of message and hit google but it may have just been a random gathering of words with no intent, I do have a habit of seeing what I want to see rather than what's really there.

Maybe I should just......................


Wednesday, 26 January 2011

Terrific Tuesday!

Yesterday (Tuesday 25th January) was Terrific Tuesday!


That would be a no then.

And I really can't say more than that.


Tuesday, 25 January 2011

Start a New Hobby Day!

Yesterday (Monday 24th January) was Start a New Hobby Day!

I'd already decided that I was going to re-instate an old one - line dancing, I haven't done any at all since the shingles in my knee at the beginning of October, plus, it's free (if I just do it at home)!

I'm also starting with my ebaying (finally) which is going to be a 'hobby' over the next year while I try to sell anything I can in an attempt to get the loan I wasn't anticipating having for this long paid off by March 2012 (just in case I don't have a job after D-Day)!

Finally I thought I'd make a start on the collection of self-help books I've collected over the years (most would argue that it's far too late to start now) in the hope that once I've paid the loan off and can actually have a social life I might actually still be able to hold a conversation with someone ;-)

Anyway, none of these really count as a proper hobby - however.................................Catherine arrived at work with a gift for me

It was a beautifully wrapped instant hobby - and a perfect choice for me with my love of Pandas and anything related to them (as in Chinese not as in Grizzly bear!)!  Thank you Catherine for, once again, embracing the 'day'!

You can find 'The World's Largest List of Hobbies' here!

By the way, I was wrong in Saturday Lovely Saturday - there's also 'laugh in the face of winter sniflement' and 'decide pale is interesting' as 'extra'.  I meant to write about this on Pamper Yourself Day cos that's when I did it!  In the half an hour I spent stood outside Auntie Betty's I was reflected in her windows - she has net curtains up which gave me a very pale ghostly appearance which was marginally interesting and I've been laughing in face of winter sniflement all month as everyone around me has succumbed to various colds and flu!

I fully intended to tell you that I almost acheived the falling over 'extra' too - on Sunday night during one of my bizarre dreams I dreamt I'd fallen off (not quite 'over' but closer than 'in', 'out' or 'flat') a railing of some sort, I found this highly amusing in my dream, to the extent that (for the third time in my life) I woke myself up because I was actually laughing! 

Anyway, that's what I was going to tell you (and did!) but, I'm pleased to announce, I did it for real too!  I had to pop back to the office during a meeting so I could print out a 'very important piece of paper' which then slipped out of my fingers on the way back to the meeting.  It was very windy today so I chased it all over the place (hoping that there were no witnesses all the while) and ended up slipping up the slope and falling over!  I embraced it fully - with my grazed fingertips - before retrieving the paper (with my foot), going back to the meeting and handing it over, slightly trampled but still legible!

Result!  And that really is all the 'extra' Exciting, Lovely, Silly Things to do in January done!  Not many days left now - looking forward to Experimental Cooking Day on Saturday though!!


Monday, 24 January 2011

Pamper Yourself Day!

Yesterday (Sunday 23rd January) was Pamper Yourself Day!

I'm sorry but to spend the whole day doing this you need someone else to be doing it for you!  I could easily kill for an all over massage - I suppose having a 'Make Someone Else Pamper You Day' would be much more difficult though!

I didn't get round to the pampering bit til late in the day I'm afraid - it was up early to walk to Asda then from Asda to Auntie Betty's where I spent 30 minutes on the doorstep waiting for her to get off the phone!  Does drinking red wine at 11am on a Sunday count as pampering?  Auntie Betty didn't have any lucozade (her usual offering) so instead she gave me red wine?  I thought why not, it is pamper yourself day after all!

Back home mid afternoon just in time for an unexpected visit from Bernie and John then put the sausage casserole on and sat down to eat it watching Stardust, with another glass of red wine (as pampering goes I don't think this was a bad effort at all!).

Decided I'd faffed about enough and should really make a serious attempt so 2 facepacks, a pedicure, a manicure and a bubble bath later I felt sufficiently pampered enough to go to bed in good conscience!


Sunday, 23 January 2011

Saturday Lovely Saturday!

Yesterday (Saturday 22nd January) was Saturday Lovely Saturday!

That's more like it!

So, the lovliness of this particular Saturday?

A bit of a lie-in
Pottering around getting stuff done
Having a nap with Rosie and Jim (it was soooo cold in the afternoon so I went and joined them on the cushions in front of the radiator - not sure they were overly impressed at the intrusion but they do it to me all the time!)
Watching Zen
Hot water bottle on my back all day (refilled frequently)......................................... aaaahhhhh, relief at last!
Leftover chinese food
Managing to get through the day without spending far too much time thinking about what I'm trying not to think about

I suppose really it was a bit of a simple pleasures day too, but it was lovely!

One of the extras for January was to 'be zen' - I haven't exactly been it but I did watch all 3 episodes of BBC's Zen series with Rufus Sewell (no, I didn't watch it with him (I wish!) but he plays the title role) so I'm crossing that one off the list too!

I think all I've got left now as a January extra is to embrace falling over.  I've fallen in, fallen out, fallen flat, but, as yet, haven't fallen over (and why is that the more you write and look at a word the more............wrong it looks?) - not to worry, I'm pretty sure I'm about due!


Saturday, 22 January 2011

Fantastic Fridayness!

Yesterday (Friday 21st January) was Fantastic Fridayness!

Not feeling it - at all.

The only fantasticness was listening to a bit of Rick Astley in the morning, I was briefly overcome with the urge to dance round the (empty) office.   Even the chinese I had later didn't bring on the fantasticness, although had I remembered to open the bottle of wine I was going to have I feel this may have done the trick!

I suppose there was a lot of Fridayness though cos, well, it was Friday?!

Saturday Lovely Saturday today - bring it on!


Thursday, 20 January 2011

Look on the Bright Side Day!

Yesterday (Wednesday 19th January) was Look on the Bright Side Day!

I felt surprisingly good (don't worry, I'm sure it won't last), I think it might be because I actually saw sunlight for the second day running!

I literally looked on the bright side here and spent the day looking forward to seeing The King's Speech at the cinema (Orange Wednesday we love you!), unfortunately it was sold out - but on the bright side I enjoyed sparkling wit and conversation with Kevin and Ray instead!

And how could the day be complete without this............


It was also a full moon - muchas brightness!

Catherine has assured me that she was lovely (one of the 'extras' for January - in fact it appears as an extra every month!) so that's one more ticked off the list! 


Tuesday, 18 January 2011

Power Ballad Day!

Yesterday (Monday 17th January) was Power Ballad Day!

Despite feeling a little All Out Of Love (not necessarily a bad thing, Love Bites) this was fun!  I got to spend the day dressed as a rock chick, I liked it, I could do this more often!  I think I could have even done it All Through The Night!

It's not that obvious from the Photograph but, trust me, in the flesh it was really working.  I even think I was 'channeling' the whole rock chick persona a little bit, Time After Time I was quite mad (Raaaaarrrrr rather than ga-ga) and a little aggressive which sure beats the sad, emotional nugget I've been so far this year!

I Found Someone (Boss) to take part in a little lunchtime quiz - match the learning programme to the power ballad - he did better than I expected but didn't quite get them all!

An example of my genius (Against All Odds ;-) introduction of power ballads at every opportunity.

Broadie invited me for a mid morning break...........................

"Are you feeling the power ballad love this morning?

Fancy a break?"
I accepted the invitation........................

"Everyday hurts , here I go again, I'm holding out for a hero, it's the final countdown and more than a feeling.

I don't want to wait anymore, nothing's gonna stop us now……………..usual place 5 mins?"
It was power ballads all the way as far as my ipod was concerned, Thunder, Def Lepard, Bon Jovi, Guns n Roses, Extreme, Queen to name but a few - somehow Barry Manilow and Bermuda Triangle snuck in and made a brief appearance.  I'm sorry, there is nothing at all that I can say in my own defense.

So, by the end of the day I'd managed to dress the part and include a respectable amount of power ballads throughout the day but didn't quite make it as far as a 'live performance' as requested by Neil!  Well, Two Out Of Three Ain't Bad I suppose!

I also took the opportunity to do a bit of legwarmer embracing (one of January's 'extra' exciting things to do).

Right, I Can't Fight This Feeling and now it's Time For Me To Fly but don't worry I'll be back To Be With You again soon, I Still Think About You, The Time Alone With You means More Than Words can say!


Sunday, 16 January 2011

Duvet Day!

Yesterday (Saturday 15th January) was Duvet Day!

This was perfect timing after a late night (well early morning return!) out the night before!  I had the perfect excuse to stay in bed til lunchtime (under my duvet) which is round about the time I expected to wake up, so why is it I was wide awake (and a tad worse for wear) at 07:15?!!!

So, I brought my specially purchased (good old Asda smartprice again ;-) single duvet downstairs to the sofa - btw I've had the duvet cover since I was a kid, it's almost as old as me but in better condition!

The duvet was immediately claimed by Rosiebear!

We agreed to share..............................

or it could be that she was trying to suffocate me for single ownership!

I then fought to stay awake through El Cid, you can't beat a Charlton Heston/biblical epic for a duvet day, drifted off a bit in the middle but then came round again for the last hour or so.

I was planning to also do the extra 'devote significant time to comfort food (particularly mashed potatoes)' thing today - I got as far as crisps and cup a soups which I'm not sure really counts!  Thankfully Bernie and John invited me round for tea (yes, I took my duvet with me - in fact I went in my pj's with my duvet) and we had roast pork and all the trimmings - just what the doctor ordered and definitely comfort food on this ocassion!


Friday, 14 January 2011

Send a Letter Day!

Yesterday (Thursday 13th January) was Send a Letter Day!

I really struggled with this one!

1. The people that I would normally consider writing to I'm generally in contact with more frequently than the time it would take Royal Mail to deliver a letter - so what would I say that they wouldn't already know before the letter arrived?!

2. The last letter I actually wrote was a total disaster!

So, I thought about it and decided to write to a long lost cousin who got in touch at Christmas - it wasn't technically a letter, it was actually a card but it'll do I guess!

I'm totally out of practice with the whole letter writing stuff so I didn't really have anything to say, still, it's written word and it's gone in the post so I'm considering it a success!


Thursday, 13 January 2011

Wonderful Wednesday!

Yesterday (Wednesday 12th January) was Wonderful Wednesday!

Highlights included ........................

being told I'm a walking hazard - as a hazard does not actually exist if it is already happening this means I'm either an accident, an emergency or a disaster.........hmmm.

realizing that I don't have to buy cat food in February (this doesn't mean I'm not going to feed my cats - I've just got enough surplus to not have to place my monthly order!) so I can pay for the chinese new year meal in early February!

catching up with Broadie/Slimmy after what seems like a very long time!

being back in the office and away from the Twilight Zone (and not particularly pleasant) experience of the last 2 days at a different site.

leftover chinese food.

.977 internet radio - country station.

pandas coming to Edinburgh Zoo!!!!

another early night, with a handful of pear drops, a book about angels and the promise of another night of Champix inspired dream weirdness!


Tuesday, 11 January 2011

Guilt Free Pottering Zone

Yesterday (Monday 10th Jan) was Guilt Free Pottering Zone!

Hmm - first day back at work, how likely was this then?!

Up at 6am to travel to Ryton for a couple of days, I suppose you could say that the journey there was a guilt free pottering zone but how much pottering can you really get up to in the passenger seat on a motorway? 

The plan was to potter alone in my room all evening - the reality involved the bar, a shot called 'Lollipop' (ameretto, lime, grenadine), instructions to make blackjack/fruit salad vodka, and the most random amusing conversations (all guilt free though!)!


Monday, 10 January 2011

Pootle About Day

Yesterday (Sunday 9th Jan) was Pootle About Day!

Verb: pootle poo-t(u)l
Usage: Brit

1.Move in a leisurely unhurried way
"I don't often get the chance to pootle around country lanes on a Sunday morning"

Derived forms: pootled, pootling, pootles
Encyclopedia: Pootle

Pootle was also the youngest member of the Flump family.  He often got things confused and he sometimes wore a white hat (both of which can also be said about me).

Pootling about does generally make me think of outdoor pootling but, as I didn't want to get out of my pj's, it was a day of pootling about indoors, getting ready to go back to work (my first day back since the Christmas hols).  Can you pootle on the sofa?  I hope so cos that's where I spent the rest of the day, watching films and trying to escape from reality for a few more hours.  Then, for a bit of variety, I toddled off to bed.


Friday, 7 January 2011

Resurrect an Old Joke Day!

Yesterday (Thursday 6th Jan) was Resurrect an Old Joke Day!

I'd like to tell you my 2 favourite jokes but I can't remember all of one of them (it's about a yellow brick!) and the other one is far too long to get into (and I usually tell it better when I've had a bit to drink - it's about a donkey!).

I did find the results of a poll to find the 50 funniest jokes here - very funny!

I think some of my favourite (publishable) contributions of the day were

Mine (from the 50 funniest jokes website)
I went down the local supermarket, I said, ''I want to make a complaint, this vinegar's got lumps in it'', he said, "Those are pickled onions''
Sophie's (a bit of classic Tommy Cooper)
"Apparently, 1 in 5 people in the world are Chinese. And there are 5 people in my family, so it must be one of them. It's either my mum or my dad. Or my older brother Colin. Or my younger brother Ho-Chan-Chu. But I think it's Colin."
Q. Why are all dumb blond jokes oneliners?
A. So men can understand them.
What do Jesus and Nicole Ritchie have in common?
They're both only famous because of their dads.
A guy is sitting at home when he hears a knock at the door. He opens the door and sees a snail on the porch. He picks up the snail and throws it as far as he can. Three years later, there’s a knock on the door. He opens it and sees the same snail. The snail says "What the hell was that all about?"
A horse walks in to a bar.......................(he didn't finish it so here's the ending for anyone not familiar with it - and the barman asks "Why the long face?")
‎'Doc I can't stop singing 'The Green, Green Grass of Home'. 'That sounds like Tom Jones syndrome.' 'Is it common?' 'It's not unusual.'
Plenty of other jokes were offered but I couldn't possibly repeat them!

Anyone brave enough to comment and include their old favourite...................?


Wednesday, 5 January 2011

Superfabulous Tuesday!

Yesterday (Tuesday 4th Jan) was Superfabulous Tuesday!

I thought I'd also try to achieve an extra January task - bounce!  I almost made a start on this on Monday night, there I was minding my own business watching a film on the laptop with my earphones plugged in when all of a sudden the building shook.  It sounded and felt exactly like when someone slams the shop door underneath me, now at 21:10 ish I knew there shouldn't be anyone in the shop so just as I was starting to wonder whether it was being burgled facebook went crazy with people reporting an earthquake!

Anyway, Tuesday - I felt surprisingly bouncy having spent the night on the sofa, after chasing my landlord about the absence of any builders at the property and being informed that they'd be here 'tomorrow' I cracked on with more sorting - and got absolutely loads done, well ahead of schedule!!  Superfabulous!

Bernie brought me her Superfabulous new car (I know nothing about cars - it's blue and a convertable, that's all I can tell you) and took me for a spin with the top down! 

Then Kevin and Ray joined me for a superfabulous evening (strangely I also spent last Superfabulous Tuesday with Kevin and Ray!), I stupidly stayed up til gone 3am and got up at 7am this morning to get ready for the builders (they've arrived!) and now I don't feel so Superfabulous anymore.  I'm so tired I can barely see straight, my head hurts and I'm struggling to dismantle my Christmas tree - I'm going to have to go and ask one of the builders to help me, how embarrassing!


Monday, 3 January 2011

Feeling Refreeshed Monday and Break First Resolution day!

Today is Feeling Refreshed Monday and also Break First Resolution Day!

I did ok with the first one but didn't really make any resolutions as such (largely because I can never stick to them!), there's things I want to achieve this year but I've learnt not to set myself rigid timescales so we'll see!  What can I say - I'm a work in progess!

I have to admit that I did feel more refreshed when I woke this morning than I have every other morning for the last 2 weeks.  By 11am I even managed to have both bedrooms packed up, moved downstairs and the furniture all moved out of the way so the builders can get where they need to tomorrow!

Things kind of took a downward turn for a while after that when I didn't feel quite so refreshed - more like a little bit broken! 

(my usually spacious bathroom which I'm now sharing with a giant panda, a bath full of stuff in black bags and various other bits and pieces!)

I've now got 90% of my belongings in my front room, bathroom and kitchen so moving around has become quite challenging!  So I took a break for a while, had lunch and watched a movie while I waited to feel refreshed again - the pro plus may have helped a little too!

I sorted out all my finances for this year (and slid from refreshed to woefully depressed) then made a start going through the boxes of stuff (for stuff read crap) that I've brought downstairs to be either thrown away or washed and/or packed to sell at a boot sale or ebay - I've tried really hard to be realistic about this but I suffer from a genetic inability to throw anything away, it'll come in handy for something sometime!  Anyway, it was refreshing to feel a sense of achieving something for the first time this year! 

How refreshed I'll feel after a week or so sleeping on the sofa I really don't know!


Sunday, 2 January 2011

Start Your Bestselling Novel Day!

Are you sitting comfortably?  Then we'll begin.....

Once Upon A Time......................................

Ok, so this is one of the 'extra' events for the diary, each month has a list of extra suggestions some of which I've converted into days and some of which I'll just try to achieve as and when I can throughout each month.  The diary this year also encourages the invention of your own days so look out for those throughout the year!

Here are the extras for this month!

So, here we go then! 

My bestselling novel - here it is!  I'm treating the blog as my novel and hoping there'll be a happy start, middle and ending!

So sit back and I'll do my best to entertain you along the way!