Sunday, 30 December 2007

I spy...

a very big bill. I went to the opticians today for the first time in a while. I've worn glasses since I was about 13, contacts since I was about 17, I know my eye sight sucks, but today really rubbed it in. My left eye has stayed the same it's -2.5 with astigmatism, but my right eye was -3.5, and is now -4.25. I now have the sort of prescription that made me gasp when I heard other people say it.
as it urns out my eye sight is now so bad that I need ultra thin lens in my glasses at a price that made me gasp to. Turns out if I don't pay about £90 per lens I will look like I'm wearing milk bottles, and only be able to have horrible glasses. As it happens I had to put back half the ones I really liked as I need a full frame around the lens even with ultra thin lenses. All in all having eye sight this bad sucks, and at £300 for my glasses plus about £15 a month for contacts I can see it won't be long until laser surgery actually becomes a cheaper option!

Saturday, 29 December 2007

Cold house

So I'm back. I've had a lovely week, of very un-Christmassy weather. I now realise I need to re-waterproof several items of clothing. First job, is to properly unpack. I have unloaded the car, but I don't think having a pile of bags containing damp clothing really constitutes unpacking!
Christmas presents, errrr is it wrong that the thing I'm most excited about is the thermometer in my new first aid kit? Though my sewing machine is quite cool, I could be spending quite a bit of money on fabric very shortly, as I have a few things I want to have a go at making!
I'm still defrosting the house, I'm wishing I'd been a bit more generous with the thermostat while I was away as the house is a little chilly! Right, the washing machine is calling. I'll post some photos as soon as my Mum sends them to me.

Saturday, 22 December 2007

Another meme because I'm lame

Here's another meme, because I really have nothing to say, this comes coutesy of Carmen at Mom to the Screaming Masses.
My brain has turned in to a mush whose only message is sleep, let me sleep! I've had a really awesome couple of days. Wednesday was the climbing club Christmas dinner, which was an awesome night, though not getting to bed until 2pm was not so great. I still love my dress, though I wish my shoes hadn't hurt my feet so much! (Ps that's me on the right)

Last night i popped round to a friends house to help them eat all their leftovers, as we're all going our separate ways to go home for Christmas. It was a really nice evening so thanks guys.

Anyway, what you've been waiting for, a new meme.

1. What did you do in 2007 that you’d never done before?
Became district commissioner.

2. Did you keep your new year’s resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
Didn't make one, and won't this year, I'm so angelic that I have no bad habits to give up!

3. Did anyone close to you give birth?
No, though I'm predicting babies in the next few years, as I keep telling all of them, get married, I want to buy a hat!

4. Did anyone close to you die?
No deaths, and hopefully the same for next year.

5. What countries did you visit?

6. What would you like to have in 2008 that you lacked in 2007?
The ability to recognise I should get out when it's all going wrong

7. What dates from 2007 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
None really, probably graduation day, but I don't know the date.

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?
Graduating with a 2:1, surviving my first teaching practise.

9. What was your biggest failure?
My relationship with Lex

10. Did you suffer illness or injury?
Surprisingly healthy this year, long may it continue!

11. What was the best thing you bought?
Comforter bath bubble bars from Lush, they always lift my spirits.

12. Whose behavior merited celebration?
My Mum, for being so brave and quitting her job after working in the same place for the last 20 years.

13. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?
Mine probably.

14. Where did most of your money go?
Tuition fees, and rent, £3000 and £250 a month respectively!

15. What did you get really, really, really excited about?
The simple things, a pretty new dress, someone doing something nice but unexpectedly so.

16. What song will always remind you of 2007?
Rihanna, Umbrella, in memory of the flood, and sheer volume of rain we had!

17. Compared to this time last year, are you: a) happier or sadder? b) thinner or fatter? c) richer or poorer?
a) sadder, but that's ok b) about the same and that's a good thing c) richer

18. What do you wish you’d done more of?
Spent time with my friends.

19. What do you wish you'd done less of?
Work, as it turns out I got my 2:1 easily and a first was never on the cards.

20. How will you be spending Christmas?
In a cottage we've rented with my family.

21. Did you fall in love in 2007?
I was in love when it started and fell out of love.

22. How many one-night stands?

23. What was your favorite TV program?
Strictly Come Dancing

24. Do you hate anyone now that you didn’t hate this time last year?

25. What was the best book you read?
Too many to mention, if you ever want a book recommendation I'm your girl!

26. What was your greatest musical discovery?
Scouting for Girls. I'm loving "Elvis ain't dead" at the moment.

27. What did you want and get?
At the moment I just want sleep, and I'm getting that this week!

28. What did you want and not get?
Lot's of things I wanted and not got...yet!

29. What was your favorite film of this year?
I can't remember going and watching anything, so mustn't have been anything amazing, because I know I went.

30. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?
Tried to cook Lasagne as the power kept going off, ate cake with friends.

31. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
Nothing really, I'm quite content at the moment.

32. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2007?
Can a child see my tits in this, or can I look like a slob in this for school days and non-school days!

33. What kept you sane?

34. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?
Daniel Craig, sometimes, though not in James Bond!

35. What political issue stirred you the most?
Hearing about George Bush doing horrible things to the abortion law, see this post for details

36. Who did you miss?
Nobody, everyone I care about is still in my life.

37. Who was the best new person you met?
Probably most of my PGCE course, Nigel and Tim, I'm going to miss sitting in the staff room dissing you guys!

38. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2007.
Breaking up doesn't get any less painful the longer you drag it out for!

39. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year.
You never were, you never will be mine.
Robyn, lyrics here

Have a lovely Christmas, if you want to do the meme feel free and leave me a comment so I can come visit. I'm going away for a week, so I'll catch you around New Year!

Monday, 17 December 2007

101 things, minus a few

No I don't know what's happened to the header, I've touched nothing but for some reason blogger is now chopping off eth top and bottom of it??? Meh???
Anyway Heidi has just written a note on facebook that I'm stealing, not alot is happening at the moment, the kids are manic about Christmas and I'm off for a meal with the other PGCE students at my school later.

101. My name is: Katie

99. I am really: not as confident as I make out

98. My cell phone company is: O2

97. My eye color is: bluey greeny?

96. My shoe size is: 5 and a half (usually)

95. My ring size is: I have no idea, no one has ever bought me a ring for me to find out!

94. My height is: 5'5"

93. I am allergic to: nothing

92. I was born: 6 days late

91. I am annoyed by: incompetence

90. Last book you read: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (for the 5th time)

89. My bed is: empty

88: One thing you hate about yourself: letting people I don't care about upset me

87. My favorite Holiday is: any, so long as I can have it now!

86. The perfect kiss: depends on my mood

85. The last three cd’s I bought were: I stopped buying music ages ago

84. Are you living at home: No, and hopefully never again!

83. Do you have any siblings: Just one younger brother

82. Are your parents divorced: No

81. What did you do yesterday: Tidied up after Christmas dinner, then finished my Christmas stocking, sorted out my lessons for the week, and drank mulled wine at a friends house.

:::I Believe In:::

80. Love at first sight: yes

79. Luck: no

78. Fate: no

77. Yourself: Most of the time!

76. Aliens: the Physics geek in me says that there has to be life out there, though we might not be bale to recognise it.

75. Heaven: no

74. Hell: no

73. Ghosts: maybe

72. Horoscopes: definitely not

71. Soulmates:Maybe, for some people definitely, some of us maybe have to work at it!

:::Which is Better:::

70. Hugs or Kisses: hugs

69. Drunk or High: drunk, though I'll leave the hangover!

68. Phone or Online: Online

67. Red heads or Black haired: red heads

66. Blondes or Brunettes: blondes of course!

65. Hot or cold: Hot

64. Summer or winter: Summer

63. Fall or Spring: Spring, the hope of the days getting lighter, and seeing green again

62. Chocolate or vanilla: Chocolate

61. Night or Day: Day, I like my sleep at night!

60. Oranges or Apples: oranges

59. Curly or Straight hair: straight

:::Here’s What I Think About:::

58. Abortion: a womans right that shouldn't be legislated by men

57. Back stabbers:nasty people

:::Last time I:::

56.Had food? Chocolate, about 30mins ago

55. Saw someone I haven’t seen in awhile: I see my parents in 5 days, haven't seen them for about 3 weeks

54. Cried in front of someone: Quiet a while, probably Lex when we were splitting up.

53. Who is the ditziest person you know: me

52. Who makes you laugh the most: My climbing friends

51. The last movie I saw: Love Actually (sob!)

50. What I don’t understand is: alot of things

49. Something I always really miss when I leave home is: having someone look after me.

48. The thing that I’m looking forward to the most: A holiday, it's been a long year

47. The thing that I’m not looking forward to is: A holiday, I've a feeling as soon as I stop I'll be ill!

46. Tomorrow: another day in school and my last Year 7 lesson

45. Today: nearly over, but has been good.

44. Next Summer: probably more work for my Dad, maybe another riding holiday.

43. Next Weekend: will be the start of the holidays

42. People call me: My name, no interesting nicknames here.

41. The person who knows the most about me is: Lex, or maybe my Mum

40. The most difficult thing to do is: recognise you were wrong and own up to it

39. I have gotten a speeding ticket: never

38. My zodiac sign is: cancer

37. The first person i talked to today was: Tim and Cat as I drove us to school

36. First time you had a crush: Middle school, on Teddy Sheringham, why, I have no idea!

35. The one person who i can’t hide things from: Lex or my Mum

34. Last time someone said something you were thinking: Don't know, I keep what's in head quite hidden!

33. Right now I am talking to: myself, first sign of madness don't you know!

32. What is your dream job? What I'm doing now

31. First real job: Working in a book shop, something I'd still like to do

30. I have/will get a job: very soon

29. I have these pets: just 1 cat at home

28. I wish: things worked out better sometimes

27. The worst sound in the world: my scream???

26. The person that makes me cry the most is? Lex

25. Best sound in the world: talk

24. Person[s] that makes you happy: Me, my friends

23. Florida or Hawaii: somewhere else.

22. My favorite piece of clothing: my new dress!

21. Last time I cried: a couple of days ago

20. My friends are: there when I need them

19. My computer is: my baby!

17. Last person I got mad at: My class today

16. The all-time best movie is: Lord of the Rings, though I change my mind regularly

15. The all-time best feeling in the world is: Love

14. I lose all respect for people who: will never admit they are wrong

13. The movie I cried at was: Love Actually

12. TV channels you watch: Dave (top gear on continuous repeat wooo!), BBC1

11. Favorite web site: Facebook/BBC

10. I like/love: feeling secure

09. The worst pain I was ever in was: spraining my ankle

08. My favorite word is: bugger

07. My room is: how I like it

06. My favorite celebrity is: no idea

05. My weakness is: not saying sorry

04. What I like about the opposite sex is: erm lets not answer that!

03. Who broke your heart: you want the list???

02. One thing that makes you feel great is: good food

01. One person that you wish you could see right now: Lex, cos I want to check he's ok!

Sunday, 16 December 2007


I've just finished tidying up after Christmas with all my university friends. I have no idea how many people I ended up feeding but I do know that there is no food left after cooking 2.5kg potatoes, 1kg parsnips, 1.5kg of sprouts, 1kg of carrots, 600g broccoli, 1kg Leeks, 48 sausages wrapped in bacon, stuffing and a turkey to serve 8-10 in supermarkets large portions, a trifle made with 2 pints of custard, 1 pint of jelly, 2 swiss rolls, 500ml cream and 2 tins of fruit, a 1 kg Christmas pudding, 500ml brandy cream, and a mountain of cheese and crackers!
Anyway it was lovely to see them all, and really got me in the festive spirit (we won't go in to how many bottles I have just tidied away!).
I'm still working on the new blog, it's taking me a while to copy and paste nearly old posts, when it's all done the archives will be deleted from here, email me if you want to know where I'm moving to.

Tuesday, 11 December 2007

What a day

I've had one of those days, a day that has driven me to thinking I need to get a more anonymous blog, as I'm not comfortable about putting all of it out here. As a result I've created a new anonymous blog, if you're a regular reader and you want the new address please email me and I'll redirect you. The only reason I'm going anonymous is I don't want kids googling my name and finding what I might have written about them.

Anyway, Lex is not very well at the moment. He's at home for the foreseeable future, and is signed off work until January. As a result I'm home alone, and last night I really needed some company. Rather than sit and get miserable I took myself off shopping. I've found the most gorgeous dress, and shoes and jewelry. and while shopping is not always the solution just knowing I have the most drop dead gorgeous outfit is enough to put a smile on my face.

Today was not a good day, I don't want to wonder wether a kid is going to lose it and wonder what I need to do if he/she starts swinging clamp stands around. I don't want to be made to feel inadequate by the teacher who's meant to be helping me, I want my class to do their homework so I can actually praise them instead of shouting at them. My supervisor at school described me as looking like I'd done 8 rounds in a boxing match today, and that was after 1 lesson.

Anyway the Rainbows are getting their end of term treat decorating pottery tonight which will be fun, and I can get a sympathetic ear on today from my unit helpers.

Sunday, 9 December 2007

Finished-now with photos

Two posts in a day but if I don't stick the pictures of the finished article up, I won't get chance for ages.
Here they are.
My Elf stichette stocking, I've only done 1, the other is being made this week, patterns courtesy of Hilary at Wee Wonderfuls.

And my advent calender, idea courtesy of Jenny at allsorts

and I must say I'm very pleased with both, now I'm just going to add some paper snowflakes, once I work out to hang them in rented accommodation without doing damage.

crazy work

Yes I am still snowed under with work. I'm currently looking at a pile of work that has been done to an abysmal standard, it's enough to drive you to drink. I'm still trying to make my advent calender, it might be done by Christmas, and I'm still making my stockings, though one is now done...
The following photo is very bad, but has been taken on my laptop web cam, as I just can't be bothered to find my proper camera. You can see the first stocking on the left.
Better photos of it and the advent calender will follow when I get chance.

Monday, 3 December 2007

Festive weekend

I've just got back from a very wet weekend wet. If you want to see how wet I'll be putting a few photos up here, but the whole album is on facebook here.
Anyway I went for 2 lovely walks, and managed to stay mostly dry, until we had to pack up the van, I've been under showers that had less water coming out of them.
All in all though a lovely weekend, the food was good, the minibus got us home, and I had 2 nice walks.
However the minibus roof leaked, I broke a piece of the rear light trying to reverse in driving rain, and the windscreen broke. The journey home was spent praying that the large crack didn't carry on spreading... (sorry no photos!)

A wintery Welsh woodland, and a very full stream.

The high point of my walk with Moel Siabod in the background.

Me looking a tad chilly.

The stream outside the hut bursting its banks.

Thursday, 29 November 2007

Christmas is coming

a week since my last post, how did that happen?
All is well at home and at uni, I'm really starting to enjoy teaching as I get more of a relationship with the kids.
Anyway, slight rant, I am waiting for a parcel of fabric to make the advent calendar I talked about in this post. However rubbish royal mail has taken over a week to deliver a first class recorded delivery parcel, and then of course they try to deliver it while I'm at work. Guess how long until i can collect it at the local sorting office? 3 days, how can it take 3 days to be ready to collect? That means I can't get it until Monday, which just happens to be after December... I need to start doing these things earlier next year!

I'm off to Wales this weekend, should be fun, as it involves the first Christmas meal of the year!

Friday, 23 November 2007


my ooomf
I seem to have lost enthusiasm, for everything...
I had a good morning, in fact we had an hilarious time at our university session in teaching sex education, but then this afternoon I slowly lost my good mood, along with my get up and go. I made myself go climbing tonight in the hope I'd feel better, and I just felt a bit lost. I just couldn't sum up any enthusiasm for it, I came home early in part because I was just so cold. It's really cold here at the moment, the car had frost on it when I came out, and I just didn't have enough warm clothes on.
I've gone to bed early, and just feel so blurgh. I don't feel ill, just like something's missing, and I don't know what.

The honeymoon is over

It's official, the childrens' behavior is starting to get interesting. i will say no more here as I write under my real name so anyone could find this, but ye gods I'd rather not have a day like yesterday again!
I still have the headache this morning, actually this is becoming a bit of a theme, and it's always just in front of my eyes, so I think new glasses and contacts and a trip to the opticians is in order, though who knows when I'll get time to sort that out. I've been at the church Hall on each of the last 3 evenings sorting out CRB checks, and while it only takes half an hour, it just takes such a chunk out of my evening. I have no idea what I'm doing with my Year 10s on Tuesday as I want to wait and see what they actually know.....
Right best get ready for the biggest waste of time in my week- my day in university.

Sunday, 18 November 2007

and breath

Things have calmed down a little since last time I posted. Teaching is actually going really well. I seem to be getting to know the kids, and so far no one has said a bad word about my teaching. Long may it continue, but being realistic I know that eventually I am going to have one those lessons from hell!
I seem to be getting my head round being DC, I have got the database working, and we might even have found a secretary. The 4 session was fine, though it was on Friday not Thursday, so a slight wasted journey there. My essay is I think done, at least it's at a standard where it can go in and I'll actually be able to get feedback that will help me.
Last night was the fancy dress party with all the climbing club, it was a really good night and very much needed. I'm not even feeling ill today, which is nice, though I know my brain cells aren't quite all firing. Anyway here's picture of me in my fairy costume, taken just before I dropped Lanas camera on the floor, and jammed the lens, and possibly killed it!

Todays projects have been finishing off my essay (done), looking in to getting a bigger hard drive for my laptop (seems achievable, and not too expensive, and buying things to make Christmas decorations. I've fallen in love with these stockings and this advent calender. All I need to do now is find time to make them!

Tuesday, 13 November 2007

In which I nearly cry with exhaustion

I'm absolutely dying to go to sleep, I have no idea why, it's 8.30, and while I was up at 7, and have been in school all day , and have been to Rainbows, and am stressed about how I'm ever going to get books out of the university Library while they keep closing it at 4pm due to the power cut making them realise that the emergency lighting doesn't work, and I'm in school every day until 4pm, and the essay is due next Friday, and I really need those books.... (are you getting the stress, behind that panckied stream of thought?)

However I need to wash my hair, it has been 3 days since it was last washed, and I can wait no longer, my scalp is itching, and the grease is appearing, yes I am a bit of a minger when it comes to hair washing, I refuse to do it every day, 2 days is the norm, and I'm fine with that thank you, if I'd not told you, you'd never know!

I also need to stop worrying, too much is going on, I'm starting teaching soon, I have coursework due in that I barely have my head round, and my District Commissioner role is starting to stress me out. So much paperwork, and no idea what I need to do with it all, and still no secretary to help out.
I still need to plan an In4mer session for Thursday, I really wish I'd said I couldn't do this, but now I have I'm not going to let them down, but it is turning in to the thing that's pushing me over the edge for this week.
Right shower time, as I can no longer type....

PS. I don't know what's happened to the header, the picture had disappeared so I tried re-uploading it, but that wasn't playing. So I fiddled around with what appear to be some changed settings in blogger, and I can only either have no words and just a picture, or the picture over the top of the words, which means you can't read the words... Help....anyone??

Sunday, 11 November 2007

In to the West

All my lesson planning is done, and for the most part I'm pleased with my efforts, but we'll have to see what they're like in practice, for the most part it's the time scales that is terrifying me. Nine lessons is not enough to teach, two Year Seven Biology modules, but as the teacher was away on sick leave before half term, and the class didn't start a new topic when they should we're stuck with it!
Our TV's on the blink, the scart lead at the back is a bit knackered, and doesn't always play with our digi box, so I've been watching DVDs while planning. I couldn't decide what to watch, but in the end went with watching the extras discs from the final Lord of the Rings films. I loved these films, for 3 years it was a Christmas tradition for us to go and watch them. when it cam round to the last one, me and my Mum started crying about 30 minutes from the end, and by the final scene I was positively howling (if you were the people behind me, I apologise now).
Now you'd expect a film to make you cry, but not the extras discs, but these ones are the most beautiful ones you've ever seen. If you have the extended version, and have never watched the extra discs, then you should do, no seriously, right now!
Part of teh extras is a bit of a biography of a young New Zealand lad, who was a film maker, his films are shown as part of the extras, and they are beautiful. He died of Cancer just as the final film was being made, and was the inspiration for the song In to the West, which is sung by Annie Lennox, and even hearing it will start to make me cry!

Saturday, 10 November 2007


My poor neglected blog, life has got in the way of blogging, in fat I'm only writing this now as a distraction form trying to work out how I'm going to teach the topics I've been given for my Year 7 and 8s. I'm really really snowed under, I have two lots of planning to do, and I'm trying to work out how I have only 2 weeks left to do a major bit of coursework.
Speaking of coursework, I need to start it, I meant to start this weekend but the university is shut due to a major power failure, so I can't get out the books I need....
I also have an In4mers (peer education) session to plan, that I'm really wishing I'd said I couldn't do!

Right, back to work.

Wednesday, 7 November 2007

First post of November

How has that happened?
Honest it feels like only yesterday since I wrote the last post. Since then I've started my school experience, I teach my first lesson today (gulp), and do my first science practical demo tomorrow! For all my other classes we're working on dates when I can take over.
Guiding stuff has gone nuts, I left the house at 7.45am yesterday and I didn't get home untill 10pm, and yes guiding is to blame. Today I have a staff meeting after school, and then have to dash across town and do one of the stupid numeracy tests the government says all new teachers have to take!
And oh bugger is that the time... must go and throw on some clothes!

Tuesday, 30 October 2007


Normally I'm not one for getting mega enthusiastic about products, I like things that work, and usually only make a fuss when they don't!
However there are a couple of things that I can talk, and talk about...
Both have recently arrived through the post!.

The new Mac Operating system is out, has sold 2million copies since Friday, and is just wonderful. there are a few little niggles, a couple of things I'll be looking out for a hack to change, but apart from that there is so much stuff I've already used. Of particular note is time machine, it automatically backs up your computer, and you can go back to any point in time, so if you delete a file and realise you need it 2 weeks later you can go and find it, and get it back!
I'm also liking Spaces, I've already used it, and I've not even been working on my computer that much, imagine having 4 screens you can move things between, so I actually stand a chance of being organised!

On an organisational note does anyone know if it's possible to convert a microsoft access database in to a format I can actually use.... they don't make access for macs, and I've tried using open office/neo office but they don't open it, and I can convert the files in to excel but then I have to completely recreate the database....
Just throwing it out there, seriously, please help me!

On a pretty girly note my parcel from Lush has arrived, and I love love love Lush, partly as it appeals to my environmental side, of course a solid shampoo not in a bottle, they reckon that your carbon footprint is 1000 times smaller by using solid stuff. The other reason I love it is that it works, and smells delightful, I can still small the parcel that arrived, I'm not going to go in to the contents as they're a present, but they're just gorgeous.

Wednesday, 24 October 2007

Five reasons why I'm a good writer

This meme comes courtesy of Eliza at Doolittle , and as I can think of nothing to write, I though I may as well. Can I just say I have a little quibble with the title of the meme, I'm really not sure I am a good writer.... however-

1) I type pretty damn quickly, as I have the memory of a goldfish this can be useful, on the rare occasions I have something interesting in my head I can get it down before I forget!

2) I have a browser with a built in spell checker, as I type (quickly), lots of red squiggles are appearing under all the mistakes, if you read the earlier post they're filled with mistakes that are mostly due to my inability to proof read.... God Bless Safari 3!

3) I have interesting friends that do interesting things, every now and again (like this weekend), they do stupid thigs, resulting in us needing the emergency services, or spending the whole night driving. They also teach me new songs, and find me being a bit dense funny (thanks guys!)

4)I've had good teachers, go and read blogs like Niobe , or Cecily, and some of their great writing skills can't help but rub off on you!

5) Errrr, lets just say I know when to stop! Quite often I have nothing to say, so I don't bore you by talking rubbish about nothing!

I don't really have anyone to tag, but if you read this and fancy doing it then consider yourself tagged, and please leave a comment so I can come check it out!

PS, another meme courtesy of Niobe also coming soon, this one involves give aways...check back in a few days.

Monday, 22 October 2007

another weekend away

Firstly, thank you to Niobe for her kind comments on my last 2 posts, it was so nice to get home last night and read them. Niobe, I've sent you an email, but just in case anyone else was wondering, I am ok, I've just got back from a weekend away with my friends, and am feeling much better. I won't deny that sometimes I missed having Lex to keep me company, and just to share the things that went on, but it really was ok!
Of course al this was helped by one of the most epic weekends away in recent history!
The rugby on Saturday night was missed because of a long night spent driving up and down the valley worrying about a group of our climbers who were missing. In the end all was well, but by that point it was nearly 10pm, and we'd well and truly missed the rugby!I even had my own mini accident and if it wasn't for some sharp catching by my brother I might have been in need of mountain rescue myself! We then nearly had a mini panic, as by that point the fuel warning light was on on the minibus. On the Sunday someone else managed to sprain their ankle, and was lucky it wasn't worse!
as for today, I'm so grateful I don't have to be in all day, as i really need to do a bit of catching up!

Thursday, 18 October 2007

Things are getting worse

well they are, my mood has gone from sky high to just about as low as I ever get. I have got through school ok, but now I'm at home with my own thoughts i just feel so upset and frustrated. I probably shouldn't even be saying this, as some small minded individuals can't seem to take criticism, even when they can't do the job they're meant to do, oopsy I shouldn't point that out.I should simply let them stumble around in ignorance.
Part of this black mood is annoyance at myself, I never particularly liked the person who has upset me anyway, but now I they have shown themselves to be a small minded power freak I like them even less. Why should I let the opinion of someone who I dislike so much affect me, I have friends who now feel the same thing about this person, so why am I so upset??
anyway that probably makes no sense, I'm going to go and try to pull my head together, sort myself out for this weekend, because this person no longer deserves any of the help I usually give, and who says I shouldn't go and make him look as stupid as possible!
I also have yet another guide meeting to go to, after the success of last nights district meeting (completely spoiled by that idiot), so I had better get my head around everything I need to get done for Monday.

Tuesday, 16 October 2007

Things are getting better

There is so much stuff I'm enjoying or looking forward to right now. Apple has finally announced the release date of Leopard, I've been looking forward to this for a while and basically it look awesome.
Also Strictly Come Dancing is back, and this year some of the celebrities are seriously good! It goes under the title of Dancing with the Stars in the US, but started originally in the UK, and I have watched and loved every series.
The rugby, now that I'm seriously looking forward to, I'm away with the climbing club this weekend, but that means I get to watch it with friends, and maybe have a drink or 2 (I've not got drunk in a very long time, this weekend could get messy!), and who knows England might just win!
I'm even kind of looking forward to my new role as district commissioner, a new challenge is going to be fun, and I have no idea how good I'm going to be at it!

Felling positive at the moment and I'm loving it. I've even started climbing regularly again, which I'm loving even if I'm not as good as I was, the idea of the challenge of getting better is making me feel good!

Saturday, 13 October 2007

Rugby again..

Oooh crikey, the rugby has just got very interesting. by some miracle England are through to the final. We've gone from losing to South Africa 36-0 in the group stages, to standing a chance of retaining our title... I have no idea how this happened but all credit to the boys. The only problem is I'm away next week for the final, we'll be staying in a hut with no TV, one might have to come with us....
The game wasn't not pretty, and certainly not recommended as one to watch if you didn't have an interest in who won, but as a fan it had me on the edge of my seat, and there were some decent passages of play.
Also of interest was that I just caught the end of the Crystal Maze, as a child I loved this programme, Channel 4 repeated on More 4 as a celebration that they're turning 20, and now I just want the show back.... any TV execs out there?

Friday, 12 October 2007

It's over

It's official, Lex and I are no longer going out. Probably more his decision than mine, I was content to muddle along and see what happened, but that was giving Lex problems. So we've decided that breaking up is probably for the best. I won't say it's been easy, but in reality very little changes. We're still living together, we're still each others best friends, but as i said in an earlier post, the passion has gone.
and the daftest thing, it's taken me 3 days to manage to change my relationship status on Facebook!

Tuesday, 9 October 2007

do I have to be a grown up?

As you might have gathered things are not going great in the relationship stakes at chez hilltop. It's hard to work out where all the passion has gone. I am not going to go in to details as people who see me in real life read this, but it just seems like we're more best friends who live together than anything else. Hmmmmm crikey relationships are hard work.
Anyway, as ever further developments will go on here, after all, I "speak" to you lot more often about this stuff than anyone else. I decided last night that I no longer have a female best friend. Not in the sense of a person you share everything with anyway. I have no idea if this is good or bad, I don't really know if I miss it, or if it's just me. I just like to keep things private, having conversations about these sorts of things is very hard for me!

Right enough being a misery, I've just realised I failed to comment on the rugby! Somehow against all odds England beat Australia, and also France beat New Zealand. For those of you who don't follow rugby, this is meaningless drivel, but they were such unexpected results, and quite who will win the tournament is now a bit of a mystery. Apart from the argument on Saturday, I had a great day watching 2 really great games of rugby.

Guiding is getting interesting, I've just taken on the role of District Commissioner, but basically I'm now "in charge" of 11 other units. I sort out forms for new helpers, and sign camp forms, chairing meetings, and responsible for making sure all the information from county gets to them! Gulp! My own unit is actually going ok. We're making a calendar over this term, basically doing 2 months at a time and decorating it, and at the end of term I'll hopefully have put it all together, and they get a calendar. The ones we've done actually look pretty snazzy!

Saturday, 6 October 2007


I know 2 posts in a day, but I need to vent!
You could say I'm having man trouble, Lex and I just had a big row. Basically we're both overworked, too tired and I'm ill. All quite a dangerous combination. Was the usual couple argument really, I'm sick of him making a mess and not tidying it up; I don't feel leaving his post on the coffee table for week is on; he hates me tidying up after him, and says he can look after himself! I'm sick of doing all the cooking and washing, and washing up, he deals with that resentment in a very manly way, with humour. And yep you've guessed it, that makes me madder!

As a result he's stormed out to the "do" he's off to tonight, with me in a most attractive way screaming "why don't you just f$%k off", I know I'm not proud of it, but read the first sentence for justification. I'll end up apologising, I always do, but christ I could cheerfully wring his neck right now.

The lurgy

I have the dreaded lurgy. So it's freshers week, lots of new germs mixing, it's to be expected! Ok acceptance over, why is my cold worse than everyone else's, I've managed to drag myself down to university for the last 2 days, but dear god, dragging myself back up the hill was horrible.
I'm sick of food not tasting, I can't even taste a cup of tea! and the snot, yeah gods the snot.... we'll stop there before the few people that read here decide never to visit again, even if for some of them I know more about their crotch than I really want, yes I'm talking to you Eliza.
Anyway I need to go and find some more tissues, and try to work out how many Guiding meetings I'm going to next week (3 I think), and actually do some work to keep up with my uni course.

So of course I'll actually watch some more TV, and wander round the internet for another couple of hours.

Wednesday, 3 October 2007


The Great Mofo Delurk 2007

According to Niobe today is De-lurking day, so if you read, please leave me a little message, it would really make my week!

Tuesday, 2 October 2007

Who's speeded up time

The start of today feels like it happened in a different year, possisbly even decade. Somehow today has just been too busy, PGCE today was a bit full, this afternoon was packed with useful information. I trudges back up the big hill, which I swear is getting steeper, to run straight back out again to go to Rainbows. Even Rainbows wasn't long enough. We should have had loads of time to do the activity, but we're actually going to have to finish off next week. We made recordings of them saying a short bit about themselves, eye colour, hair colour etc. and then were meant to play them back and guess who it was. We didn't finish the play back, I had promised I'd finish off next meeting, but it means taking my laptop in again, and will mean we rush next weeks activity, so I really don't want to, however I feel that if I promise them something I should stick to my word.... so at the end of that mass of consciousness what should I do?

On an even more depressing not I watched a great documentary when I finally sat down, Stephen Fry:HIV and Me. Now Stephen Fry is one of my most favourite people on TV, and he is just such a wonderfully compassionate guy. He never seems false, and somehow manages to be funny in the oddest situations. Now while he doesn't have HIV, as a 50 year old gay man he has watched many friends die of AIDS. He discussed current attitude in the UK, met a teenager who was infected at birth, but is open about her HIV status, and her attitude was just breathtakingly wonderful. he also went to South Africa and I'm still reeling from what he found out. The South African government acknowledges you get HIV from unprotected sex, but then says there is no link between HIV and AIDS. According to them having HIV is completely unrelated to the fact that eventually you die of AIDS, and even more scarily 1000 people a day die of AIDS.

Saturday, 29 September 2007

and on the seventh day she rested... or not

And so the first week is done. So far I'm waiting to find my stride, you know and really get in to the course. I'm adjusting to the 9.30-4.30 days better than I thought, yes they are pitiful in comparison to a real job, but when you've had a year when your contact hours maxed out 6, doing that amount in a day is odd!
I know where I'm going for my first placement and I'm happy with it, I'm not going to say where it is though, I think that might be wise! I'm also loving the rugby world cup, in the past week as it's all started to get serious about who progresses to the next round things have really hotted up. Matches have started to get interesting, and somehow more competitive. However I am still doing dreadfully with my fantasy league team. Some of us on UKClimbing have set one up here, we did the same for the 6 Nations and I did far far better. As the only female I am determined not to come last, but at the moment that's looking likely!
This weekend I've already driven about 400 miles, my parents just backpacked the Yorkshire Dales way, and needed to get back to the start to collect the car. They looked in public transport but it was really complicated, and really expensive, so they paid me to drive up from Sheffield to pick them up. That took most of today, 3 hours to Windermere, 1 and a half to Ilkley and another hour home. Only to go shopping and wonder why people were shopping as if Nuclear war had been declared. Eventually I got home without half the things I wanted as they'd sold out.
Tomorrow is Freshers climb, and that day starts at 7am, now thats earlier than I get up on a weekday, what happened? still I get to spend the whole day climbing, taking the piss out of my younger brother, and meeting friends. We then get to go for a nice meal after to celebrate not killing anybody, or a successful sending to hospital of those that do decide to hurt themselves!

Monday, 24 September 2007

Thank You

This is going to be a post of gratefulness, I seem to spend too much time moaning about things, but actually I have a lot to be happy about.
Cecily, at I wasted all that birth control has a post up about health care in the US, when you realise that getting a broken arm fixed cost her Mom $1000 (£500), and that medical treatment was on a n emergency only basis , I'm so grateful for the NHS. I've probably always been in a situation where I could afford insurance, but so many people in the US can't, and George Bush appears to want to stop what little help is already available. Imagine being in a situation where your child is ill, but you can't take them to the doctor because you can't afford it?
For that reason I'm grateful for the NHS, because despite it faults, long waiting lists, MRSA, etc. at least treatment is available for all no matter their income.
I'm also grateful for my opportunities, I've just started my PGCE to train to be a teacher, in many countries I wouldn't get that opportunity. I'd have been unable to gain a degree, or even get educated.

So next time I feel pissed off about this country (including how much money I owe the government), I'll try to remember these things, it's not such a bad place to live!

Saturday, 22 September 2007

they grow up so fast

I have just helped move my little brother in to his university accommodation. Like me he's come to Sheffield, unlike me, his accommodation is newly built. So new that the builders' take away was still in the kitchen, and the outside is still a building site!
It is all very nice and new though, with an en-suite bathroom (I didn't have one), and a flat socialising area. I'm a little jealous, after all three years ago this was me, and life wasn't nearly so scary back then.
In a years time I will have got a job, be in a new flat in I'm not quite sure where. I'll be paying back my student loan, which I think currently stands at about £30,000, not helped by them doubling the interest rate for this year. It's supposed to be at the same rate as inflation, now if inflation is at 4.8% then the economy is in big trouble. Its bad enough that the grant system our parents and everyone else enjoyed untill the mid 90s was abolished, it's even worse that they're ripping off people who have no other options by doing this. If you're a UK resident you can sign one of those 10 downing street petitions here.

Tuesday, 18 September 2007

In which he was allowed to live

Blimey, how has it been over a week since I last posted???? In truth life has got busier, but there still isn't a whole lot going on. I have finally started my teaching course. I've just spent one week in school, and am part way through my second week. It's a lovely school, but christ they're little.

Doing history and maths is fun, but I had forgotten how much English lessons turned me off. I guess I'm a scientists through and through but I love me a bit of logic, and scientific method, and experimenting, and finding something amazing out. I'll never be happy until I understand everything, and as there are some very clever people out there who still are puzzled by some stuff that's never going to happen, but in a good way.

As a side note if you like science, or even if you don't but feel you should know more read Bill Bryson, A short history of nearly everything. It is the best science book I have ever read.

Anyway school, I think a separate blog will have to be started up, so much funny stuff, but as I write this with my real name, and publish it on Facebook, I probably can't share lots of it.
Anyway I'm in a delightful Primary school, in an affluent neighborhood, on the whole the kids behave themselves. I've not heard any threatening or really nasty behaviour, just the usual rudeness. One child should be lucky thon is allowed to live, thon constantly asks stupid questions, interrupts, talks when thon shouldn't be, and is just so annoying. By the end of yesterday both me and the teacher could have happily wrung thons little neck! The child is so laid back about incurring our displeasure it's untrue.

Saturday, 8 September 2007

Sport of Men

The rugby world cup has started, this brings back so many memories. The last time it happened was 4 years ago in Australia. I was doing volunteer work in an animal sanctuary in Thailand. This time is in France, so the timing is much better for us in the UK, getting up at 7am to watch sport is beyond the call of duty.
I love rugby players, so much better than football (soccer) players, these are real men. None of the swearing at the ref, they all love their Mum, respect each other, but you still wouldn't want to meet them down a dark alley (well depending on who it was ;-) )

For any Americans reading this if you like sport check out rugby, it's like American football, without the body armor, and without the funny number shouting (can you tell I don't get the rules!). Plus they've started wearing tight jerseys, and for the most part, oh my!

Edited to add- the first match is over, England have been rubbish, the USA on the other hand have been good and really put their hearts in to it. We'll need to play better against the Samoans, and even more scarily the South Africans. We still won though.

Thursday, 6 September 2007


That's how the dentists described my teeth, unfortunate!
They're just funny shaped, with gaps the wrong size, grooves in the wrong places. Before modern dental treatment I'm willing to bet that by aged 40 I'd be one of those people with no teeth! I think he's fixed it, the gap between two teeth was filling with food as he reshaped a filling on a previous treatment, he's now really gone to town on this filling to stop food getting in to the gap. Fingers crossed it seemed to have worked.
If not I have to make a phone call to my Dad and say I can't work tomorrow, I start my PGCE on Monday and taking a morning off to go to the dentists isn't an option I really want to take.

Monday, 3 September 2007

The long awaited video

So it's taken me a while, bu the latest masterpiece from what Lex likes to call flaccid productions is here. It's a long one, 16 minutes, so it's on google video instead of youtube, and has taken most of yesterday to edit, but I think it shows promise!
Thanks go to all my stunning subjects, particulary as this time you obliged me with some footage of problems being successfuly climbed! (I should say sent, but I just can't bring myself to do it!)
The rest of today will be spent restocking on food, trying to sort out how I've had a student overdraft for 3 years and have never been charged for it, but don't appear to have a student account!
I'll also spend the rest of the day moaning to myself about my tooth, after 5 dentists appointments this year most of which focusing around this one tooth I am still in pain, I'm getting close to telling him to pull the damned thing out and be damned with the hard to see gap it makes, especially as I start my course in 1 week and I can't take 3 or 4 mornings off to drive back to get several fillings done. Still at least it hasn't cost me a fortune in fees, just in petrol!

Thursday, 30 August 2007

itching my way through the day

The midge bites, yep still itch, they have resisted zirtek, piriton and every anti intching, anti allergic reaction cream in my Mum's pharmacy/first aid kit (quick question, if anybody wants to answer, what html do I need to type to get words striked through?)
However I am being strong,and somehow have not scratched to the point of drawing blood, given everyone (apart from Lex), who I have shown these bites to has winced I think this is very impressive.
As well as being as looking like a walking dot to dot puzzle I also had to go the dentists, 3 more fillings, if I carry on this way I will have no teeth left. i will hasten to add that my dentist assures me I brush my teeth correctly, but I just have bad teeth, food gets stuck in the gaps between them, and I have many many crevices for nasty things to happen. So yet again I have a sore mouth, however in comparison to getting a root canal done it was a walk in the park. So for this year I reckon I'm on a root canal, and maybe 4 ordinary fillings, a polish, and 4 x-rays, the bil, (thank god I have a NHS dentist), less than £150, wooo tits!
More food has been cooked, like last year, I'm off to chatsworth country fair to help with the mountain rescue fundraising tomorrow, have I packed no, but I do know the location of my wellies, and more importantly I have cake!
Currently looking at the living room, and deciding if I need to clean, or if I should just chuck the throws back on the sofa and blow it. I think the latter option may win, I have changed the bed however, and while I may not have prepared tea I at least know what I will cook. Excuse me while I go for a good scratch.

Tuesday, 28 August 2007

In true modern multi-tasking style

This is being written while watching Tribe. I've just got out of the bath, which was aimed to ease the hundreds of midge bites ( I would take a photograph, it's a bit like a huge dot-to-dot puzzle, but Lex would laugh!), which I got today while out teaching climbing. I came back from what is my thoroughly modern job, 50 years ago climbing instructors didn't exist, to that age old task, the washing. Lex and I only went away for 3 days, but the amount of stuff required, and more crucially the amount of washing created in unbelievable!
We're on 2 loads today, with another 2 in the wash basket still, even worse I'm going home for a day to do some more instructing as a favor to a friend, and also to get my fillings sorted so I will be able to eat sweet things without wincing again!
There are photos from the holiday, and even another video, but I don't think I'll et chance to download them until next week, patience is a virtue and all that!

Thursday, 23 August 2007

I'm back

I think it's safe to say August has been a pretty rubbish month for posts, with this one I'll have done 7, with only 8 days of the month left, and I'm away for 3 of those, yep I'm off on holiday again!
I've just got back from a week in Pembrokeshire with my family, it's where we've been lots. and have been going since I was tiny, think baby tiny. Yes my parents were that mad breed who'd take a virtual new born camping! It's been a lovely week, just soooo god damn windy. The sort of wnd that keeps you awake at night, and makes you feel like your brains are being blown out. It wasn't untill the last day that the wind was finally in a direction where we could climb out of the wind, and I actually removed enough clothed to get sun burnt!
I arrived back last night and got ready to go away this weekend, though I'm a little behind on that, but I have done 3 loads of washing. If anyone would like to share with me how they housetrained a male member of the species please let me know. Lex has yet to manage putting the dirty shirt he takes off at night in the wash basket!
Next up, shopping for food, finding the camping stuff, and starting my packing as I'm at work again tomorrow, oh and going to give blood as they keep sending me letters saying stocks are running low and I'll feel guilty about not going.

Wednesday, 15 August 2007

It's all about the kids and not the money, honest

I've been at work again for the last 3 days. Monday was spent teaching outside with a family of 5. The weather was ok, apart from at lunch, just as I'd gone to change where our rope was the heavens opened, and where was I? Stuck at the top. Where were my waterproofs? At the bottom, as a result I got a trifle soggy!
Tuesday was spent indoors, luckily as the weather was fowl, with a interesting group of kids. There were 14 from London here on holiday, they were inner city kids, and were so so loud, everything was done at a shout. It's unbelievable how that level of noise wears you out if you're trying to teach. There was also the weird kid who couldn't stop saying sorry, for everything even if it's not his fault. I walk in to him because I'm not looking where I'm going, kid says sorry. I ask kid if he's enjoying himself because he doesn't seem very happy, kid apologises for being miserable..... by the end of the day I was ready to wring his sorry little neck!

Today was meant to be spent catching up with all my neglected tasks, like going to the bank, and maybe actually getting prepared for my PGCE, however at 7pm last night I got a phone call asking me if I could do some climbing instruction. The group was meant to go out yesterday but the weather was so bad they couldn't. The instructor was booked up for today, so they needed a different person. Now as I have no money turning down £100 to go to the bank didn't seem very wise! Unfortunately the weather today wasn't very good either, so I spent all day indoors, which was a little wearing as effectively I did the same thing 4 times in 6 hours. However the girls had a great time so that's all that really matters.

Anyway, the main reason I thought I'd better write a post was to say I'm off on holiday for a week with no internet access. I'm off to Pembrokeshire with my family, so Lex will be left to fend for himself for a week.

Sunday, 12 August 2007

where have all the climbers gone?

The previous post with this title was changed after I errrrr, rather embarrassingly realised that I'd written a post with no real reference to climbing! ooops, obviously this work thing killed my brain cells.

Anyway, Friday night, after a long week at work I went out climbing with a guy from work (Mark), and a rather brilliant climber who I helped teach to climb (Hannah), and is now a rather good climber. She came 6th at the recent UK junior indoor bouldering championships at Cliffhanger, and 4th at the Junior British Leading championships. If you're not a climber just trust me when I say she's good!

We went to a place called Hen Cloud, which is just 10 minutes away from where I used to live, despite that I've only ever climbed there once before, we did one of the routes that I've done once before, that is supposedly a classic at its grade, i'd say it's alright, and has one desperately hard move if you're under 5'5", even Hannah said so, so it's not me being rubbish! The other 2 routes were also good, though from one I am now sporting a huge number of cuts and bruises after making the novice mistake of thinking that wedging myself in a crack would make things easier!
One notable thing, both at Hen Cloud, which has never been that popular, and at The Roaches, which always is, was the lack of other climbers. It's fair to say that this year has been a bit of a wash out, after a good April June and May were wet, very wet! August however has been a little better, so why on a sunny Friday evening, with a previous week of dry weather, so no wet excuses were there only 6 cars in the lay-by? When I think back to my childhood my Dad used to rush home from work so we could get out there and be able to park!

This weekend has been less adventurous, cooking, cleaning and tidying have been on the agenda, along with a well earned laze about!

Saturday, 11 August 2007

cooking, cleaning and getting all domestic

I've been at work all week, which for me is something on an event, me thinks I will have a shock in September when i actually start my teacher training!
Anyway so far today I've been busy sorting out the house and making it look more like a home and less like a jumble sale, I'm ignoring the spare room, that's Lex's man room, and if he wants to have all his clothes piled on the floor that's his look out, he's learnt the hard way that if the dirty ones don't make it to the wash basket then they don't get clean!
Next on the schedule is using the still broken (reported to landlord over a month ago, still waiting for it to be fixed), hoover to remove the I'm not quite sure things off the floor, and then to make more mess by cooking.

On the menu tonight, tarte tatin, lamb with chorizo and butter beans, the recipe says halibut, but I watched the recipe on saturday kitchen this morning and apparently it's good with lamb to, and some unknown cake or biscuit, I've yet to make my mind up!
That should keep me amused nicely I think, now if only the radio in the kitchen had longwave radio so i could have the cricket on!
Edited nearly 2 days later after I noticed that my post title had no relevance to what I'd actually written, isn't amazing how your brain can go off track so easily!

Monday, 6 August 2007

Do kids nowadays have too great an expectation?

I was at work all day with 2 kids, yep just 2, christ I hate those days, I'd much rather be dealing with 8 hell raisers, than just 2 mild mannered ones. 9.30 till 3.30 is a long time to fill climbing with just 2 kids, particularly if 1 of them refuses to climb, I think by the end of it I was more exhausted than them, after all I climbed up to the top more times than them to move the rope!

Anyway I was talking with them about their holiday, they'd already mentioned wind-surfing, kayaking and horse riding, todays activity will have cost at least £120, with the others being similarly pricey. Apparently these kids were with their grandparents were because their parents were in the Dominican Republic, and you know what, instead of saying they'd had a great time, they were moaning about they'd much rather have been in the Dominican Republic because there was Sky TV, a spa, and you could swim in the sea!

Is it me or is that just weird, I'd have killed for a holiday like they're having when I was their age, in fact I still would! And the ungratefulness nearly took my breath away! when I spoke to their Grandmother about doing more climbing I mentioned some more sessions I'm doing this week which will be as part of a group, her response "I'm sure you'd much rather have 1:1 tuition wouldn't you dears?", is it just me or is that a really sucky attitude.

BTW, get me at the grand old age of 22 moaning about "the kids of today", I'm so loving the irony of that!

Friday, 3 August 2007

Riding in Ireland

I have photos, if you want to see them you can go here.

If you love riding, then you should really try this holiday, you get given a map, your horse, B&Bs are booked for you that have a field for your horses, and your follow yellow arrows, doing about 25miles a day for 6 days!
We (edited to add that we, means my mad mother and I. I was sent a text at 8am this morning wanting to know why I had failed to mention her presence!) were so lucky with the weather this year, there was a ten minute shower, and that was it, most embarrassingly I got horrendously sunburnt, particularly the back of my hand which is so painful! The horses as ever are beautiful, and wonderful to ride, forward going, but not too much, and brilliant with traffic. This is the 3rd time I have done one of these trails, there are 3 in total, and I have now done all of them, anyway if that sounds like your sort of holiday then you can go here.
I don't really know what to add, just that it was an amazing holiday, I could go on for ages, but more would be dull if you're not in to horses!

Thursday, 2 August 2007

I'm back

So I went away for a little while. I thought I'd put a post up about it, but apparently I hadn't....
But anyway, I've spent a week trail riding (on horses) in Ireland, I'll put up photos shortly, as in I still need to get them off the camera! If you want to see previous trips then you can go here.
I've got back, after a week with no internet, read 60 emails (I'm unloved!), 80 blog posts (so much I would have commented on at the time, but don't want to a week after the original post!), an checked my bank account to work out how I will pay for my car which has been in the garage while I was away. For those of you that know my car it should no longer feel like I'm driving a sofa!

As it's now 11.30 pm, and I'm back at work tomorrow I'd better leave it there, photos and a full account of my adventures will follow.

Monday, 23 July 2007

An ending

Lots of things are finishing at the moment. Not only have I no more Harry Potter books to read, I also graduated from university.
I was doubtful about going to my graduation ceremony, and to be honest my parents weren't to sure about it either. while both are graduates, they went to a very different type of university to me.
Anyway by the end of the day we were glad we went, it kind of provided a nice full stop to this part of my life, and besides, there was free wine on offer from my department after the ceremony! (and we're the only university in the UK where the undergraduates doing a simple Bachelor of .... get to wear fur hoods, and the Master of ... and Doctorates get plain ones!)

It had been so wet that when directed to stand by the fountain for this picture lots of frantic arm waving went on as my heels sank in, and sank in, and I genuinely feared I'd end up backwards in the fountain!

Saturday, 21 July 2007

Potter Mania!

Book bought- 10am this morning
Got home from shopping- 11.30am
Finished book- 5.30pm

So much happened, stuff I thought would happen, lots I thought wouldn't, and just such rich detail.
Lots of people belittle adults who read Harry Potter, but if only more adult writers could write stories that completely capture you like this, so what its not real, but in case you've been in a nuclear bunker for the past few years some pretty shit things have been happening, a book that allows you to escape for a few hours can't be a bad thing.

Monday, 16 July 2007

Wish you were here...

Welcome to my part of the Virtual World Tour, organised by The Impatient Patient. A load of bloggers post pictures of their home town, and you'll find all the other stops on the tour here.
Anyway, welcome to my hometown in the UK. Not my regular place of residence, I spend most time further north due to being at university, but as far as the passport agency is concerned I live here!

The view to the east(ish, looking out to the moors, in the direction of Morridge.

The view to the west, just behind the houses atthe very top of the picture is where I went to first school.

Our fig tree, maybe not what you'd expect in the north of England, but it produces figs every year.

Our minature pond, home to more frogs than you care to immagine, how they fit in I have no idea!

Products of the garden, the raspberries this year taste wonderful, the strawberry's aren't as good as usual, due to the lack of sunshine!

The view out of the back garden, you can see my parents picking the raspberries above!

A Day lilly in the front garden

The front garden.

Our skull collection, no we're not wiccans, or wierd, we collect them on mountain walks and they all make their way on to the pergola!

Monday, 9 July 2007

Floral Art

As requested, here are some pictures of some floral art by my Mum and I. This first one is by me a few years ago, the class category was something like "a day at the seaside", the one below is by my Mum, the class title was "Musicals", and it represents Jesus Christ Superstar.
There would have been a few more, but I've kind of broken the scanner, oops! Apologies for the quality, they were taken on film quite a few years ago, and the scanner isn't great quality, but hopefully you get the idea.

Wednesday, 4 July 2007

Bad Blogger!

Yet again, I'm being a bad blogger, no I haven't dropped off the face of the earth, it's just that I've got a bit busy all of a sudden. Anyway, i have a lovely long post planned out, with lots to talk about!

Right, first things first, currently at parents house busy working at the climbing wall. Lex has started his new job, is currently home alone, and apparently misses me, though not so much he's not going to watch the start of the Tour de France in London this weekend, and not see me until Sunday, at which point I go home for more work!

Work today was not an experience I want tomorrow, we were out at the Roaches with a private school, and it rained, and rained, and rained, in torrents. All the kids ended up in the emergency shelter due to having no waterproofs, while I faced the rain and took the ropes down. Despite having £200 waterproofs I was drenched, every waterproof has a big design flaw, the holes for your hands and head, and when it's running down your face and down your neck it doesn't matter how expensive the waterproof is! (And breath, mammoth sentence there!) Anyway, I was soaked, just need to get everything dry now.

Ok next, according to the Gender Genie , I write like a man (found courtesy of Jo). Basically it analyses text from your blog, and looks for certain words which are typically masculine or feminine. My score comes out at Female Score: 776, Male Score: 1016, so it's a close thing but I'm still a little upset, well you know what I mean....

Finally, I am considering myself tagged by Niobe, for the eight things about you meme. Errrr eight things about me that you might not know

1) Until the age of 19 I lived in the same house for all but 2 weeks of my life.
2)Age 13 I did the Juan de Fuca Trail on Vancouver Island, all 47Km of it, over 5 days, carrying everything we needed.
3)I have an Aunty who lives in America, and an uncle in Australia.
4) Aged 18 I travelled to Thailand by myself.
5) I have entered and won prizes in Floral art Competitions
6) I worked at a riding stables every Friday night for nearly 6 years, and have been on 4 trail riding holidays covering about 270 miles, with another week in the saddle to come.
7) Both my mother and I are thwarted vets.
8) I love to read, like love it, I hardly ever don't have a book on the go, my mother's prediction for my future profession in my baby book was a librarian.

Right, I am now meant to tag 8 people, however I don't know 8 people who haven't already done this, if you read this and want a go then feel free.

Wednesday, 27 June 2007

Birthday photos

As requested by Niobe of Dead Baby Jokes here are photos of my birthday.

Please ignore the shiny forehead, I'd been cooking all day, and was without electricity for 6 hours!

Well I just did my last day at school, just in time for the roads to reopen. I've got the review session, er like now errrr better run! oops!

Thank goodness I live on a hill

I've not made it in to school either today or yesterday, I've tried both days yesterday I got as far as the dual carriageway heading towards the M1, today we didn't even make it that far. While the waters have subsided greatly the dam threatening the M1 is still in danger of bursting, so the motorway is still closed. Many roads are severely damaged, or still under water. School has told us not to come in , as the 25 mile journey is taking as long as 4 hours.

Oh and did I mention it's my birthday today, I'm meant to be having people round to celebrate. Problem is that 12,000 people are without power, they're trying to restore power to them. The problem being some of the sub stations were under 5 foot of water so aren't working, they're trying to sort out power, but in order to do that they're cutting off the power to various parts of the city for 3 hours at a time. I'm praying it won't be while I'm cooking for 10 people tonight.

However at least my house doesn't look like this.

Monday, 25 June 2007

Where can I get an ark?

It's raining, lots, and lots, and lots, and buckets, and poodles, and cats, and cats, and maybe even frogs!
The school I'm at closed at lunchtime, the science corridor had to have it's power shut off due to a leaking roof, and the road it's on was closed due to flooding. the school fields developed a lake, and well you get the picture. Getting home was worrying us, but luckily all was well. We've got to go in tomorrow but there will be no kids in due to continuing risk of electrocution, death, fire etc. Apparently you can take these risks with the staff!

The climbing wall Lex works at as had to close, the River Don has burst it's banks, flooded the car park, and has made it in to the entrance hall. Luckily the climbing hall is about 1m higher, so hopefully it will be spared!

Sunday, 24 June 2007


I've been quiet recently, but for a very good reason! I've now officially moved house, if anyone needs to know more then they already do!
The new flat is lovely, everything is unpacked (apart from Lex's man room, but that's up to him!), and we're settling in nicely. The only problem with 2 people moving in together who used to have independent lives is the amount of stuff! Somehow we had 5 drying racks, 15 sharp knives, 10 saucepans, the list goes on!
Anyway, nothing more really to add, I've spent the day cooking ready for work next week, I've got the house to myself as Lex is out on his road bike I will enjoy my peace and quiet.

Saturday, 16 June 2007

things I must remember when it all goes wrong occasionally

The following poems were taken from this website. To me they explain why I spend so much time volunteering to run a Rainbow unit. If you have kids, please make sure you appreciate the volunteers who give up their spare time, we may not be perfect, but we try our very best. If you have the time ask them if they want help, you can guarantee they won't say no! If you don't have kids, why not volunteer anyway, trust me it's well worth it.
Remember volunteers are unpaid not because we are worthless, but because we are priceless.

They're looking for volunteers again,
Be quick and duck your head.
Don't meet their eyes what ever you do,
Or just pretend you're dead.

Girl Guides and school and basketball,
Footbal and PTO,
Turn them down, every request,
Be firm and just say no.

I'm much too busy to help out,
Others have much more time.
It might cost me extra money,
I don't have an extra dime.

My work keeps me too busy,
I've no time to relax,
To spend time with some kids you see,
Is way too much of a tax.

And I've never volunteered before,
I don't think that I know how,
Everyone else knows more than me,
At least they do right now.

Others seem to know just what to do,
They've a knack to sustain it,
They must have done it all their lives,
Nothing else can explain it.

So rely on them for scout leaders
For the girls and boys,
They can coach my kid's football team,
And deal with all the noise.

They make this world a better place,
I want my kids to learn that,
Thats why I have them in the scouts,
and sports and stuff like that.

I guess that if I admit it to myself,
I've a little time to spare.
They say you can see a kids eyes light up,
When they know you care.

So come on and volunteer with me,
We'll learn how it is done,
I think that I will make the time,
What it might even be is fun.

Adapted from the original poem by Paul Nepermann, Cub Master, Pack 153

Because you said 'yes':

a young girl will feel the pride of being someone special as she carefully puts on her uniform for the very first time.
a girl can move to a new town and have "instant friendships" with girls she might never have met.
parents will experience that special pride when they listen to their daughter say the Girl scout Promise for the first time.
bright eyes will become a little brighter with excitement as the kindling finally catches on the first campfire.
nervous giggles will emit from tents as girls try to fall asleep their first night of camp.
the community, and the world will be richer because a girl has learned the importance of caring for her environment, and the warm feeling that comes from giving service to someone less fortunate than herself.
a parent will find a gold trefoil carefully tucked away in a drawer as their daughter packs to leave home for her first adventures as a young adult.
a young woman will contact the Girl Scouts one day and say, "I had so much fun when I was a Girl Scout, I'd like to try being a Leader."
And the circle will continue...because you said, "YES"

Friday, 15 June 2007

Ill, blinking kids.

Well I'm still up to all of the things listed in my previous post, however it would seem that the lovely year 7s on monday have given me a cold. i don't feel too bad, but my nose is so bunged up, the type where you can only breath through your mouth and just look a bit stupid.
Oh and it drips, constantly, i have used more tissues than i can carry round with me over the past 3 days! the first week in school has been great, all the teachers are really friendly, with one exception but as I write this in my real name it's probably not a good idea to write about that. I can see i will need to get an anonymous blog when I actually start doing this job for real. even better is that it's confirming what I want to do, I'm getting so excited about the idea of teaching.
The weather at the moment is a little annoying, think rain, and lots of it (a months worth in one day!), just when i have to drive to work. There have been a few minor aquaplaning moments on the motorways this morning simply due to the volume of water out the sky, having wipers on full pelt just didn't help one bit. Getting up at 6.20 and doing 2 hours of driving a day while not on top form is getting a bit tiring as well, i have to pick Lex up from work at 10, and then i feel an early night is very much in order.
I returned the keys to the house the other night, so officially I'm now homeless until we get in to the new flat, I'm staying with Lex until then. When I went in to get the meter readings Who should appear but Stinky for some reason he became known as Stinky, I don't know why but it kind of suited him even though he didn't smell. So I told him I'm sure the next people would love him lots and gave him a big cuddle, and felt very sad at putting a soggy cat out in the rain! I also discovered why our house was so damp, because of all the rain a large puddle appeared in the cellar, one mystery solved, and at least i no longer have to deal with the mold!

Tuesday, 12 June 2007

education, education, education

I'm a bad blogger at the moment, but who can blame me I've just moved house and I've started a new job (kind of). I'm doing a 3 week school placement scheme called the Student Associate Scheme. Basically it's a government scheme to put university students in secondary schools to give them experience of teaching, and to raise the aspirations of pupils about going to universities. It's a really good scheme, though the promoting university bit bridles me a little. The government wants 50% of our students to go to university and I think this is just mad. It just devalues university education, and gets students in debt and they come out with a meaningless degree that will be worth nothing. It's much quoted that graduates earn more than non-graduates but not if your degree is in golf course studies, Madonna studies, or Peace studies.
Anyway I digress the school is a really great school. The staff are all really friendly, and the school has a great atmosphere. Should be a good 3 weeks.

Thursday, 7 June 2007

why, why, why???

I hate moving. At the momment I have so much to organise.
I have a pile of bagged and boxed stuff that is going to the new flat a couple of weeks early as I'm being allowed to store it in the garage. Moving date for this lot, Sunday 6pm.
I have a pile of stuff to go to Lexs for me to live from for 2 weeks untill we can get in to thew new flat. Moving date for this lot, errrr can I get back to you, sometime this weekend, probably!
I have a house to clean before next Friday, oh and have I mentioned I'm spending all my time at a school placement scheme starting Monday.
I have 10 bags to go the charity shop, moving date for this lot, err sometime this afternoon when I get my ass in gear!
The bills, gas, electric, phone, TV licence, insurance are all sorted. That was the easy part.

Right will stop moaning and get on with it.

Tuesday, 5 June 2007

Anyone would think I have nothing to do...

Yet again it's time for my tri-annual hair cut. I used to hate getting my haircut, my Mum always cut my hair when I was younger and I just never worked out how to enjoy it!
Anyway I kind of don't mind it now.

What do you think?

And then I started playing around with the effects on my web cam! Macbooks are way too much fun!

Friday, 1 June 2007

exams are over, yay!

I have officialy done my last ever exam. Overall I was quite pleased with this set, todays wasn't great but I think I did ok, and some of the others amazed me with how much I knew!
Anyway no more exams left, so I can now concentrate on my summer mission of finally completing legend of zelda on the n64. Yes I know I'm behind the times but if you saw how badly I played you'd understand why it's taken my nearly 10 years. Picking up from last years playing I'm on the Shadow temple. I've gotten to same point 3 times so far this afternoon and died every go! I'm no getting frustrated so a bit of TV watching and internet browsing is in order.

Thursday, 31 May 2007

Thursday's child...

In an idea stolen unashamedly (I'm in the middle of exams, all creativity has gone out of the window!) from Niobe of Dead Baby Jokes .

Monday's child is fair of face
Tuesday's child is full of grace
Wednesday's child is full of woe
Thursday's child has far to go
Friday's child is loving and giving
Saturday's child works hard for a living
But the child that is born on the Sabbath day
Is bonny and blithe and good and gay

You can use this site to work out what day you were born on.
Turns out I was bon on a Thursday, I'm not quite sure what having far to go exactly means but at the momment it seems appropriate. I have one more exam left, and then have a summer of doing bits and pieces then a year training to be a teacher. While it might not seem like a long way to go, it sure feels like it at the momment!

Tuesday, 29 May 2007

Two down, two to go

Well I've just had my second exam of four. It was the module mentioned in my previous post in which I got an atrocious coursework score. It didn't go too badly, I put in lots of detail, answered teh question (I hope) and wrote lots.
I now have 2 exams remaining both of whihc are in an area i am pretty happy with.

Off to Rainbows for a bit of relaxation, I'm just hoping that the church hall has been left open for us, if not it could be clay modelling outside!
Here's hoping it doesn't rain.

Friday, 25 May 2007


I just got an email from my department telling me the coursework score for one of my modules, for which I have yet to sit the exam. It was not good news, a 40 was not the score I wanted to see. I only just passed that part. I wish they'd just not told me, as now all I'm doing is panicking about that exam. I think it's only worth 1/3 of the mark of the whole modules, but it still means I've got to do very very well on the exam to keep up a good score.
Why send me a score I can do nothing more about, ! can't redo the coursework, I have no more coursework to do so I can't really learn from what I got wrong, which is impossible anyway. A simple score lets me know nothing about where I failed. Looking back on it I'm guessing I didn't really answer the question, but it's a question I'm not sure how they wanted answering and evryone else I spoke to said the same.
Oh well, I just spoke to my Mum about and as she said, what's done is done and nothing I can do will change that. Now bak to the revision.