Tuesday, 26 April 2016

Not quite drowning

but waving!

Still here, but with crises in several areas, some bigger than others, life is a bit of a struggle just now, and there isn't a great deal of spare time for blogging or even money saving these days..... BUT there will be an improvement when the EF girls leave, which I am now looking forward to in a bittersweet kind of way - I will miss them, but I am keen to regain a higher level of privacy in our lives again - we are feeling like we live in a fishbowl some days, and the YFG has resorted to coming to my room late at night to share things with me that she doesn't want overheard.  

I have had a gallop around some blogs at the weekend, so I have an idea of some of what is going on, but hopefully I will catch up properly in the summer - I shall be back, as I am too fond of this space to abandon it. The story's not over yet!  Love to you all x

Sunday, 10 April 2016

Caught myself

I did it last week - I saw a man on a bike, struggling against the wind and lugging two bags of shopping on his handlebars, and I thought to myself, "Poor bloke, can't afford a car, and in this weather, he's having a hard time....." but then I wondered whether actually, he can afford a car, and just prefers to bike, or preferred to bike on that particular day.  And I have been subject to comments myself a couple of times lately about my ability to afford things, albeit in a very subtle way today.

We have been borrowing our neighbour's dog over the past couple of weekends to go for walks around the village, and I mentioned to him today that we might consider a dog ourselves by the time that the YFG is off to uni, so that I have some company....and his response was that it is cheaper to borrow his dog a couple of times a week than to have one of our own.  Yes, that IS strictly true, of course, because we get the pleasure of the walks without the costs of keeping the lovely dog.  On the other hand, I can't see me going round and asking if I can borrow the dog for a hour or two "to keep me company" as that sounds weird compared to asking if I can take him out for a walk!!

And then there have been the comments about my capability to do things, like buy a car, and rod our drains.  Some folk thought that I couldn't do either on my own - I won't go there!!  I've done both in the last month, and survived.

The moral of the tale - you know!  Don't prejudge.......heck - don't judge at all, and just let's all get on with what we are doing and do it the best way we know how - we can all ask for help if we need it!

Monday, 4 April 2016

Popping back

Sunday nights are good again - except that "The Durrells" is on ITV so I do have to put up with adverts.  Having read the book when I was at primary school, I had a vague recollection of the storyline and some of the characters, and the first episode last night was good.

Meet the cast of The Durrells
(image from radiotimes.com)

Lots of things are going well at the moment - the EFG is home for three weeks, work is going well and the weather is perking up.

Unfortunately, I still don't have my new car but we won't worry too much about that or life will get depressing.

Grandad has booked another cruise in August for the girls to go along with him and his partner; the YFG is stressing about exams already; the EF girls leave in 10 weeks, and we are beginning to be ready for that - I shall miss them but I will also be glad to regain some privacy in the house, and some freedoms.

Hope you are all well, and thank you for reading xx

Sunday, 27 March 2016

Happy Easter

He is Risen!

Image result for easter morning
(image from cuzimage.com)

And we have made it to the Easter weekend break. It feels like a relief as tomorrow I have a day off, and I am ready for it!

Every day during Holy Week I have been walking 10,000 steps [roughly a little over 5 miles] in order to raise money for Care International to help girls attend school in developing countries by providing water pumps in their villages so that they do not have to walk to fetch water. I committed to walking that many steps each day, including today, so I am hoping to get the walking done before Storm Katie hits us - she had better hold off until tomorrow.

I have actually already walked the 70,000 steps necessary but since I said I would do it each day, I will - I have a choice, but the girls who walk for water have not the same luxury of choice and so I will walk today in their honour.  This cause is important to me, as someone who has received a good education and who works to promote equal opportunities and good education for the village children here, and I want all children to have access to education too.

I've had a good level of support and think that I will have raised just over £200 by the time all the money so far pledged is in, so I am pleased with that as the original target was half of that.

Each day I have been walking with some music to keep me company but yesterday I finally managed to get someone to come with me - the YFG accompanied me because I was lucky enough to borrow our friends' dog!  That was encouragement enough to get her to tag along, but whether I shall be so lucky today will be another matter!

I'm taking the village chapel service this morning at 10am, UJ is here for a roast lamb lunch, and then I shall be walking in the afternoon before I go to help out at another service this evening.  And tomorrow - my feet will be up and I have a film to watch whilst the wind howls down the chimney.

Happy Easter!

Wednesday, 23 March 2016

Five!

I'm now on my FIFTH car of the month - I started off with Susan, I've borrowed UJ's car, I've had a hire car, I've test driven Fiona, and now I'm on number Five!

Why a fifth?  

We went along to pick up Fiona, only to find out that she had failed the MOT as the central locking wasn't locking!  They had ordered the part and it should be there this morning.  I was more than a little disappointed, but on the other hand, better that they discovered it and put it right than it happen when it was my responsibility.  I did ask for them to deliver it, since I did not want to go all the way back again - and they gave me car number 5, a free courtesy car, for today.  This one is bright cobalt blue and a dream to drive.......shame I can't keep it!




Thursday, 17 March 2016

Seriously Skoda

The part has not yet arrived for Susan :(

I bought another Skoda Fabia today :)  

I think she might be called Fiona, but I haven't quite made up my mind. She's petrol blue but actually runs on diesel and is a 12 plate.  She's coming home on Tuesday.  Relief all round.

Wednesday, 16 March 2016

Financial

Sometimes it seems that the world's conspiring against you, and it is very draining to see money spiraling away from the bank accounts in a seemingly never-ending flow.  I've had the chimney fixed and not had the bill, but I know that the hire of the cherry picker to do the job was about £180 before the chaps touched the chimney!  Then there is the car, and the hire car, and the parts I have ordered, and it seems that that situation may not be remedied straight away........

In times like these, I do something which seems to some to be very strange - I start giving things away. It's a trust issue. It says to me and to God that I trust He will continue to care for us, and that we will be OK. That this drain will stop and that actually, I have enough, and so I can spare resources for others.  I have just made a donation to the Salvation Army online, and I shall be making a donation to the local food bank today as well.  It makes me stop and think about my own feelings towards resources and having "enough" and just how blessed we are.