Sunday, December 31, 2006

Plenty Going On!!

Happy New Year To You All!!!

Plenty going on, you can join in the Daily Photo or the Pip Challenge, please read below and let me know so I can put a link to your blog!!

I will not be back until Next Year!!! So until then Cheers!!!!!

Saturday, December 30, 2006

A Photo a Day and The Pip Challenge 2007

Photo a Day!

On my friend Lotties site, a suggestion was made about taking a photo a day during 2007. Apparently there are lots of blogs that do this and it helps on the days when you have nothing to write about!! I never seem to have a problem about finding something to write about but I thought I might do this anyway. So if you fancy joining in then let me know and I will add a link to your blog here!!

The Pip Challenge

My Nana was always growing all sorts of pips so I thought why not have a go!!!

The Challenge: to produce a beautiful plant from unwanted material!

Don't forget you are dealing with unwanted pips and great as the potential is of the pip to grow, your efforts will be a bit of a gamble as well as a test of skill!

Some suggestions of pips you could use:-

Avocado, Date Palm, Peanuts or Monkey Nuts, Orange, lemon, Grapefruit, Cherry. I'm sure there are loads more to choose from!

So who fancies a go then???

Friday, December 29, 2006

Finished the first one!!!!

This was so much fun! I randomly threaded the beads onto the wire, but I can see if you want any sort of pattern they need to go on in a certain order!! This could be very addictive. I still have another one to do, so will post pics when its done!!!

Fine today!!!

What a depressing read yesterday was!!!! I am so sorry, probably put everyone off my blog forever!!!!!! I think it was the shock that Mark had been hit by the shadow!!!! Never in a million years would I have guessed he would have been 'got'!!!

Anyway, on to more cheery things hey!!!

I'm crafting again, Kathryn and I went out yesterday and went round lots of charity shops, she bought more handbags!!!!!! I visited the one and only wool shop open in the area at the moment and bought these ingredients

I'm sorry its not the best picture in the world, but the ingredients are, copper wire, beads, seed beads, bugle beeds and sequins, plus 2 small buttons! Now what do you think I am going to make with these??????

I have also recieved an order for 2 pairs of fingerless gloves, I need to make a new laundry bag for Kathryn to take back to Uni, (I shrunk her last one in the wash!!) and a friend gave me some wheat, so I fancy having a go at some wheat bags!! The ones you warm up in the microwave!! So plenty to keep me occupied in the craft department!

It is that time of year when you start thinking about what you are going to plant in the garden in the new year!! I know some of my pictures of the garden make it look quite big! It is in fact long and thin. But there really isn't a huge amount of room. I have been toying for a while about enquiring about getting an allotment! It would give me the space I quite fancy having, to grow all the fruit and veg we would need, the big disadvantage is the distance I believe I would need to travel to get to and from it! Also my lack of dry, frost free storage that I believe I would need for all the goodies I hoped to grow!! I have one small chest freezer and 2 small front opening freezers, I can always invest in another freezer to go in the shed. But what about storage for onions, garlic, potatoes, squash and I'm sure many other veggies I haven't thought of!!! I had to bring in my garlic and onions as I did have them in the shed but it got too cold, they are currently hung up round the house, shedding onion skins everywhere!
Living in a, nearly 150 year old cottage, there is actually very little storage and definately no garage, I did suggest to Mark that we get planning permission to convert the shed into a brick built building, but to be honest I don't fancy all the muck and stuff coming through the house again! (we have no rear access!!) So any ideas and suggestions gratefully recieved and I will be discussing favourite veggies that you have and I have growen and other veggie garden stuff as we move along into 2007!!!

My good friend Lottie, link on the side, has a friend who came up with what I thought was a good idea, a photo a day for 2007, so I will have a go starting January 1st.

We are also going to try out new craft ideas, maybe trying something new every month, so pop back and see what we get up to!!!

Thursday, December 28, 2006


Latterly things have been odd in my household! Well since the summer really! Mark has been under a heart specialist who we saw again just before Christmas who said he could find nothing wrong (thats good!!). So why does he get so tired and always want to sleep, or watch telly? Motivation is lacking dreadfully unless he is at work, when I think routine is what keeps him going!!
Kathryn has commented since her return from Uni! how 'down' everyone appears! I wondered if Mark misses Kathryn more than he lets on!
He has changed alot, this frightens me, because he was (is) my soul mate! We have always worked as a team, we have had to, because of Tori! I'm not sure anyone Drs, school, occupational therapists, and to some extent family realise what hard work Tori is!!
Kathryn has been unbelieveable with her since she came back, I had forgotten just what a knack she has of getting her to do things which she has dug her heels in with me!! I've just realised, how nowadays, I rarely let Mark deal with Tori, it usually ends up in a blazing row which takes me hours to sort out, so I just get on and do it, sort it or whatever!!
I have been so busy with Christmas I hadn't realised how I felt, Kathryn and I chatter away, laugh away and she asks some very deep questions which start you thinking!!! I miss this so much! Are family always had so much fun, always laughing and joking, it doesn't happen at the moment!!
Then my sister phoned and as usual we chatted and she asked how things where, so I told her............. she said that they (Cal & Jay) had been chatting and to cut a long story short,wondered if Mark had depression!!! They thought it all started back Christmas 2004 when we had Christmas in South Africa with Marks sister and she kicked us out and we had to come home early! To be honest its a longer story than that but it was all to do with their mothers 'Will' and she (Marks sister)thought Mark was trying to 'do' her out of her share!!! Stupid woman, if she knew Mark she would realise that, that thought would never enter his head!!! Anyway prior to be kicked out of her home they (brother & sister) had a blazing row, I have never ever seen Mark so angry, in fact I had to drag him away because I was scared he might 'pop' her one (something definately not in his nature), and she would most certainly have called the police!!!
This affected the girls very badly, they and neither had I, had ever seen Mark in such a state. This is where we believe Toris' deppression problems started on top of everything else! Kathryn and I muddled through because we 'girly chatted' but is my sister right could this have affected Mark more than I thought??? He came home and handed the 'Will' over to a solicitor because we where scared his sister would never believe him even though he was executor!!
So we chatted yesterday and he agreed to go and see the Doctor! He still has to have a few blood tests to finalise the heart report but the wheels are set in motion, the 'Doc' is aware, and more importantly Mark thinks it is a possibility!!
So now, I am beating myself up, how on earth did I miss this, I suffer with bouts of depression. I suppose because he has always been my rock and just being so close, I didn't see it!!
So thank you Cal, and Jay I can assure you he doesn't sleep when your around to avoid you!!he really does enjoy your company!!
Kathryn returns to Uni on Saturday, then is off to Derby with her boyfriend for New Year!! But will be back with us on the 11th Jan, the day before my next Op!!! until about the 26th Jan when the next semester starts!
I think I might go and spend some money today!!! I need to do something.... Crafty!!

Wednesday, December 27, 2006


I have been out blog hopping today, and have found some of the most amazing blogs, crafty blogs, gardening blogs, wordy blogs. It has been quite an experience, I will be visiting some again and looking for some new ones too!and eventually if the other bloggers agree attaching a link!!

We as a family have also been out, I went to Waterstones to exchange a book I had been given for Christmas which I already had, I tried to find a craft book that would inspire me to try new projects! But unfortunately I could find none! If anyone has any suggestions I am looking for inspiration!!
So after a battle they agreed to give me vouchers until I could find something I liked!
We then went to the cinema to see the new James Bond film!! Entertaining!!

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Boxing Day!!

Well thats Christmas over for another year! All that preperation and its over in 24 hours!!!
We had a lovely time with just the four of us, very relaxed, lovely presents, plenty to eat and drink. We bought a new game 'Articulate' it is brilliant and I recommend it to everyone.
Not sure what we have planned for today. Take it as it comes I think!

I managed to finish these for Kathryn, just!!

I got this book which has lots of different crafts in. I'm looking forward to having a go at ....

these beautiful crocus bulbs which are sat on purple crystals, they are currently in a dark place!!!

I have made some changes to my blog in colours and fonts, please let me know if you have any problems reading or whatever!

Monday, December 25, 2006

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas to all my new and old blogger friends!

We had a great meal last night with our friends from up the road joining us. We nelieve my Mum and her partner Bruce arrived safely in Guernsey!! My sister got back to her home ok and I believe is having a 'chill out' Christmas this year!
Kathryn said she would be up early as she was so excited............. I'm still waiting!!!!!
Bit busy at the mo! But will be back to updating my blog etc, in the not to distant future.

All the best, be thinking of you at mid-day

Libby xxxx

Sunday, December 24, 2006

Please join me!

I will be probably posting again, but I thought it would be great if...........

at 12.00 (GMT) (mid-day) Christmas Day we all joined in a toast to absent friends? This has been a family tradition for all my family as we had many seafarers who where often away at this time of year. So wherever they where in the world all of us family , friends, relatives raised our glasses and joined in the toast.

I will be thinking of you all

Merry Christmas

Saturday, December 23, 2006

Meet Dot and Doris!!

I thought you would like to meet my friends chickens, Dot & Doris

I'm looking after them at the moment.
Now I know you thought I had a big garden, but look at the size of Dot & Doris's

Now we go down and through the gate to where the chickens are....

Squeeze through the bushes..
this is the chickens area.......

Now down here throught the gate between the greenhouse and the fruit cage.....

across the vegetable area and over to the shed....

In the distance you can see a gate and that is the boundary of the farmers field.

Now I will show you what should really be ours, but when we moved into our house back in '88' unbeknown to us, the bottom plot, which I will show you now, had been sold to No 2!!!
So looking across from Dot & Doris's vegetable garden you can see through to my greenhouse...

the stables......

and then further down the garden....

All of this could have been ours. Sadly it was in the days when we had very little money so where unable to go after both the solicitor and the estate agent.

The house is tidy all I need to do is hoover. The ham is in soak. The chickens cleaned out. The girls have both got there heads down doing course work and essays. The 2nd load of washing is just spinning and I have a couple of shirts to iron.
I think I might take myself off and have a hot soak in the bath as a treat!!
Cathc you all later!!!

Friday, December 22, 2006

Shopping, Haircuts, Builders and Surprises!!

Kathryn was out on the razz!! last night with her old friends from Chippenham College, they all went off to a nightclub in Bristol!! She didn't get back in until 4am. Then I had to wake her at 8am because we had hair appointments at 9.15am. Bless her, she was up bright and chatty! Meanwhile Mark had left for Winchester Family Records Office at 8am he had to find some descendants!!!!
After are haircuts, we did a bit more clothes shopping then we had to shoot through to Calne and deliver cards and presents before being back home for the builders at mid-day.
The builders went up on the roof to see where are leak was, and they found it, so have made good for now but will be back in the New Year to do a proper job!!!
I got a lovely phone call from my Mum. she was made up with the hamper we gave her, she just wanted to know why we hadn't bought her a cupboard to put it all in!!! I think it was a hit!!!
Then I had a surprise a parcel addressed to me, and me alone!!! So as it didn't say do not open till Christmas I opened it and it was full of........

lots and lots of goodies! It was from Mrs Nesbit, I was her 7000th person on her blog! Well I know what I'm doing with some of the material and when I've done it I will post a pic!!! She very kindly made me and my family a beautiful Christmas card. Now Lottie and I have enjoyed making some of our cards for Christmas but when you see Mrs Nesbit's you understand why she runs a very good card business....

As usual Mrs Nesbit your card is absolutely gorgeous thank you very, much, it is greatly appreciated!

After I blitzed our bedroom, Tori was working hard on some Science Course work and Kathryn had fallen asleep, curled up on the chair. I decided I would pop into the shops and see how busy it was as I had some last bits to do!! When I got there the car park was practically empty, and all the tills where open but not very busy, so in I went, round I whizzed with my list and trolley, filling it up with all the bits and pieces and then straight to a till, where as I unloaded onto the conveyor belt, it went past the checkout lady and was all nicely packed in my 'green' shopping bags by another lady, then I paid and left!!! Gob smacking I dont think I have ever gone round the shop so quick!!!!!!!!!!!!!! So that is it all done, dusted (well I will do that tomorrow!)presents wrapped, and under the tree and ready! The ham will go in soak tomorrow, the turkey and pork will be taken out of the freezer as well.
I'm getting excited now!!!!!!!!

Thursday, December 21, 2006

Look what I got!!!!

I received this in the post today! It is absolutely gorgeous, if you put it so a light shines through it looks like someone is home!!!!
My new internet friend Lottie, made it for me.
Thank you so much Lottie, it is really lovely. XXXXXX

Tis! The season to be Jolly! fa la la la laaa la la la laaa!!!

What is nearly as good as a White Christmas??

A Frosty One!!!!!!! How cool (excuse the pun!) would it be if these really hard frosts stayed over Christmas Day!! I know its not as good as snow but it will be close!

Now these pics where taken this morning by my hubby..............

Now can you see one of Santa's Reindeer or is it something else??

We have actually had a busy day, and satrted early so we could get to Devizes Market, and boy was it cold! I dragged everyone along and we had a great time, I'm sorry I didn't get any photos, but my hands where full!!!!

When I came back having unpacked I then iced the Christmas cake, with Tori's help.

I also made some of Lotties Mincemeat Crunch, which has had to be 'means' tested by the family (a number of times!!!)

I do feel sorry for all those people being held up at the airports by fog and do hope they make it home, in time for Christmas. My mum and her partner Bruce are due to fly to Guernsey. So we will have to see, if they don't make it I will ask them, if they don't mind the drive, to join us!

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

What next???

So now we are all organised for Christmas what are we going to do next??????? I didn't post yesterday because I had nothing much to write about!!!! I know I still have the cake to ice and the mince pies to make and the fresh shopping to do but nearly everything else is, as I said earlier, done!!!

So here are some pics.............

Sassy is happy now Kathryn is home

Frosty Days....

The fog and frost are due to stay with us for the next few days, so I will take my camera with me when I go out!!!!

As you might have gathered I'm abit short of things to do...........

so I 'Googled' Christmas News and the year of my birth and look what I found

The Illustrated London News 1959
Events of this year in the Illustrated London News

January 1st - The then President, General Fulgencio Batista, fled Cuba as Dr. Fidel Castro took power
February 3rd - Buddy Holly, 22, was killed in an air crash at Iowa, USA
April 19th - The Dalai Lama found sanctuary in India from Chinese aggressors
July - Billie Holiday, 44, considered one of the greatest Jazz singers died
June 17th - Eamon de Valera was elected President of Eire
August 25th - BMC (British Motor Corporation) introduced the Austin Seven Mini and the Morris Minor Mini (same car except for their grill and badge) it will do 50 to 60 Miles Per Gallon and can be parked in a space of only 11 ft 6 inches. It was designed by Alec Issigonis and it was priced around £500.
October 8th - A Conservative government was elected for the third time in Britain with Harold macmillan as Prime Minister still with the message "You've never had it so good"!
November - The London to Birmingham Motorway was opened and the first fatal accident was four days later
December 14th - Archbishop Makarios was elected president of the new Republic of Cyprus
There was a lot of talk about station and line closures on British Rail and massive investment into Britains roads
Cliff Richard and Room at the Top were part of the social scene along with Espresso coffee and Wimpey bars. Stereo music players were being intorduced to the home and Penicillin was about to become the wonder drug
The USSR Lunik reaches the moon
Pope John XXIII summons the Vatican Council
Louis Leakey discovers the skull of 600,000 year old Nutcracker man

how cool hey!!!!!

Now you have a go and let me know what happened in your year!!!!!!

Monday, December 18, 2006

Nearly done! I think!!!

Thats right I think I'm nearly done for Christmas!!!!! Apart from the fresh food shopping and Icing the Christmas cake!! Whats left??? I wrapped the presents this morning, gave the kitchen a good clean. I must admit I'm worried!!!! I'm never this organised, I even checked to see when I need to take the turkey out of the freezer?!?! I think to be totally sure I will write menus for the week end just to make sure I have all the necessary.

The girls decorated the tree yesterday. We where fortunate enough to find a pot grown christmas tree in 'Focus' last week, only cost £20! Its quite a bit smaller than we usually have but it will grow! I will be checking with Lottie on how she looks after hers!!!!

Can you see the Christmas Robin?

he is very old now, but has always had a place on our tree since I read the story to the girls when they where quite small about the 'Christmas Robin'. Mrs Robin, loved the shiny tinsel and wanted some for her nest, so brave Mr Robin flew in the window to try and get some, unfortunately as he landed on the tree the family walked in and the children where allowed to choose something from the tree. The little boy chose a toy soldier but the little girl chose the Robin, who jumped to the top branch of the tree and sang his little heart out. Everybody clapped and cheered and then they opened the window to let him out. So he flew off home to Mrs Robin to tell her about his adventure!! In the New Year, when the tree was put out there was some tinsel still left on it, so Mrs Robin got her shiny tinsel after all!!!!
Tori adored this story the first year I read it and I had to read it, and read it and read it over and over again. I searched high and low all the following year and eventually found a Robin who has had pride of place ever since!!!!!!

Cross Stitch and Beaded Cards, now my friends have recieved them I can post pics. I made 3 for some very 'crafty friends'!!! I am hopeless with glueing and sticking because I can never get the colours right, but give me a needle and thread and I can do just about anything!!!!!

This one went to my neighbour

this to Mrs N

and this one to Lottie

Thats it for now, I'm off out but will be back tomorrow!!!

Sunday, December 17, 2006

Travelling Friday and Saturday!!!!!

Such alot has happened since my last post!!!
On Friday Kathryn phoned and said 'I want to come visiting too, can you come and get me please?' I laughed and laughed, this is sooooooooo Kathryn. We where due to go and get her next Tuesday or Wednesday!!! So off Mark went, he left about 2pm-ish and it took longer than usual but it helps when Kathryn does the driving on the way back!!
I collected Tori from school and she asked where the other car was when we got back, I said that 'Mark had gone Christmas shopping and I left the space by the cottage for him as I was hoping for a large present!!!' (I should be struck down by lightning!!)
Kathryn and Mark got back at about 6pm -ish! Kathryn crept up the stairs knocked on Tori's door and marched in.............. Tori's face was a picture!! She exclaimed 'why am I always the last to know?' Well sweetheart you wouldn't get such a surprise if you did know!!!!!!!

Up at 6am Saturday morning, left at 7am off for the grand tour! My sister and family in Eridge, East Sussex, Marks good friends and Kathryns Godparents, Phil & Anne in Addlestone, Surrey then on to my friends and Toris Godparents in Sutton, Surrey!

Now my sister can pick a Christmas Tree, every year she does it, they are always perfect, I don't know how she does it, because I can never find that beautiful pyramid shape that she gets, so i haven't told her but I took a picture just to show the world!!

Now her daughter did say that this year they found it in the first place they went too! Apparently they have been known to visit '8' yes 'EIGHT' garden centres!!! I think that explains why mine are always a bit odd in shape!!!!!!!

Now here are the girls

Danielle on the left, my sisters youngest daughter, she is just 3 weeks older than Kathryn and they are the best of friends! They didn't really have any chance not to be, because Cal and I used to buy 2 of everything and dress them identically!!! In those days we spent alot of time together!! Tori in the middle and Kathryn on the right. Lieing across them is Jays daughter Emily a right tinker!!!!

Meet her cats.......
this is Garfield

and yes he does live up to his name! He is a big cat and eats anything, but is soooo laid back, such a character!

His sister Roxy a real live wire

and Fliss

Cal was saying that you often find Fliss and Garfield kissing, but should anyone walk in Fliss gives Garfield a cuff round the head, and poor old Garfield has no idea waht he's done wrong and sits there looking extremely puzzled!!!!!

Anyway after an extremely enjoyable day with them all, we left to visit everyone else! It was great, a thoroughly enjoyable and extremely tiring day, but so nice to catch up with everyone.

We got home about 20mins past midnight! So I expect it will be a very lazy day today!!

Friday, December 15, 2006

Ho! Hum! Friday!!

I thought I would start todays post with a beautiful picture I took this week! Just to cheer us up. So warmest year hey!!! doesn't bare thinking about, its quite scary really to think that global warming could be the reason why!!! I feel sorry for all the animals! They don't have a telly with weather stations explaining what is happening, poor little hedgehogs are totally confused as are alot of the plants, trees and hedges!!!!!

Before I get on the band wagaon and start preachimg I think I will change the subject.

Here is someone, who, no matter what the weather is doing, can always make himself comfortable!!

This is him asleep on Kathryns pillow, which I have had to cover with an old towel. I'm not sure what will happen when Kathryn comes home??????? They may have to fight it out!!!!!

Anyway I have been exceptionally busy today...... I have washed two very muddy cars inside and out, I have hoovered all the downstairs including the porch (well it is nearly Christmas!)Filled the recycling box that is collected, done the ironing (definately ill!!)cooked some lunch, and after having a shower, I shall take the cardboard and plastic to the recycling place, get some petrol, collect Tori from school and then come back home and get on with a few making and doing things!!!

Although I am quite busy, I can't really write about it!!!! All very hush! hush!!

Leave a comment and let me know what your up to, please!!

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Toffee Failure!!!

I tried to make toffee today and failed miserably!!
I have never had this problem before and I blame Marks Mum (God rest her soul). Whilst I was preparing for the great event Mark recalled his mothers attempts at toffee making and how she failed on more than one occasion! To be honest she was not a good cook at all, according to her beloved son!
I have made varying types of toffee for many years, including when I was at catering college! I have NEVER failed, until now.
Why I still have no idea!!
So all ingredients into the pan

Boiled to the correct temperature using a sugar thermometer...

Poured into a greased tin..

You can see its not quite right here...

and definately not here, it is all sugary in the middle, which I do not understand

so mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm, back to the drawing board I think!!!

Pair of Old Crocks!!!!!

I had my visit to the specialist on Monday, it was Marks turn yesterday, so having dropped Tori off at school we then shot through to Swindon did a bit of Christmas shopping, before going on to the Great Western Hospital!!!
Mark was injected with some nuclear substance and then had a lung scan! He is not allowed to hold a baby for 24hrs and I must admit I was quite disappointed that he didn't 'glow' in bed last night!!!!!!!!! This is all to do with his heart checks he had earlier, when they sent a camera through his arteries to check the heart valves etc. whilst he was going through this procedure, the specialist told him that he wasn't breathing right! Also our GP had initially sent him for Chest X-Ray when the problems first appeared, which had showed a shadow. So yesterday he had another Chest X-Ray before the lung scan and we find out the results by seeing the specialist on the 21st December! Lets hope it is all good news, especailly that close to Christmas!!!
Tori, went to another Sixth Form open evening at Hardenhuish School, Chippenham last night with Mark. I think she enjoyed it but her heart is still set on New College! Which is fortunate because Mark aked the question about 'support' and they where definately not forth coming unless we funded it ourselves!!!! This school from what I've heard picks the cream of the crop, which of course then gives it some fantastic results, which in turn gives it a fantastic reputation! I was very disappointed with this especially as Kathryn is getting so much positive support at Univesity!

Postings maybe a bit sporadic over the next few weeks, but I am still here and will do my best to keep the info on me and mine flowing!!!!

Monday, December 11, 2006

Monday 11th!!

I did not sleep well last night, I woke up at 01.15am and didn't get back into bed until after 04.00am. I was worried about what the specialist would say today!!! As it turned out I was right to worry, I have to go back in for another op on Jan 12th!!! Lets hope it sorts out the problem this time!!!!

We went up Cherhill Downs yesterday, it was a lovely day but bitterley cold. I got some super photos...................
This is looking back down the track we had just walked up towards the A4!! believe it or not........

Now we are standing above the Cherhill White Horse looking again towards the A4 and the village of Cherhill

This is taken from the same place as above but I have zoomed in. If you look carefully you can just make out Cherhill School. This is where both the girls went and we where very fortunate that at the time Kathryn joined it was an up and coming primary school. Beyond the mound of sand is the town of Calne.

we now walked along the ridge towards Cherhill Monument

This is taken standing at the bottom of it and looking up!!!

The plaque reads:-
The Lansdowne Monument
Designed by Sir Charles Harry and built in 1865 by the Third Marque of Lansdowne in memory of his ancester Sir William Petty 1624- 1684 Physician and Surveyor. Repaired by the National Trust 1990 with funds raised by public appeal snd grants from the Historic Buildings and Monuments Commision.

This looks beyond the monument, in the distance you can see a clump of trees. This is Morgans Hill, supposedly named after the last man to be hanged there!!!!!

Now I have turned my back on the A4 and I am probably looking towards Westbury in the very far distance...

So I hope you enjoyed our walk. I hope to do quite a few over the festive period as I would like to lose another 1/2 stone before my operation in January.