Friday 31 December 2021
Thursday 30 December 2021
Wednesday 29 December 2021
One more of those days between Christmas and New Year when you keep having to ask what day is it? Well as far as I have been able to make out today was Wednesday!
One side effect of this time of year is my inability to get out of bed on a morning! I've never been a 'morning' person but now add in disturbed nights sleep due to night sweats and mornings become even more of a struggle!
But my late morning I was able to hook up online with my Disney Dream Girls podcast co-host Michelle to record a couple of shows. One was our main show which will probably get released over the coming weekend and the other was a special show for our Patreon supporters.
By the time we'd finished recording it was early afternoon and I made myself busy by getting up to date with the laundry and getting ready for our few nights away tomorrow. We then decided to take an hour out to watch the first episode of the new Star Wars series 'The Book of Boba Fett'. We were already starting to see comments appearing on social media and so decided to watch the show to avoid any potential spoilers. This is a weekly show and so it's going to be a challenge each week to stay away from any spoilers until we can get it watched. All I will say is that the first episode did not disappoint and we are now eager to see more.
Tomorrow we are driving down to Bournemouth to spend a few days there to catch up with Molly, Dan and his family. Molly has been living down with Dan since the beginning of November but this is the first time we will have visited since taking delivery of our new electric car! We have about 190 miles to travel and whilst in theory our car should manage around that on one charge we know from a little research that we will need to re-charge en-route.
So this afternoon we loaded up 'Zap-Map' and planned our route. This allows us to not only get the directions needed to get there (which we know anyway) but to plan where to stop for re-charging. We have found about four places along the route that would be sensible places to stop; all motorway services with fast-charging units and options for food and coffee. The plan is to stop at at least one of these stops or maybe two depending on how we feel and how the car is performing. We haven't yet completed a long distance drive so this will be new territory for us and so it will be interesting to see how the car actually performs...while at the same time being a little scary!!
As we would normally stop for a coffee at least once on a long car journey we are hoping that stopping to recharge shouldn't be an issue. Most fast chargers are designed to charge a car to an 80% charge in about 30 minutes so fingers crossed it shouldn't be too much of an inconvenience. We shall find out tomorrow!
And then finally late afternoon I was able to put the last few pieces in my current jigsaw...
Tuesday 28 December 2021
We are now in that strange few days between Christmas and New Year when we seem to lose track of dates and days...so I think today was Tuesday!
It was another day spent at home but today we got to spend it with my very good friend, and podcast co-host, Michelle. It has been a few months since we last saw each other in person, although we do message each other all the time, and of course, we chat at least once a week while podcast recording.
But today Michelle made the eighty mile journey south to visit us in person and we had a lovely day simply chatting, drinking coffee, more chatting, a little lunch and more coffee!
I was very blessed to receive some amazing Christmas presents from Michelle as well...Disney themed of course...
|Department 56 collectible - just gorgeous|
|Who doesn't love a pair of Mickey earrings?!|
Monday 27 December 2021
Today has been another quiet day, a bank holiday here in the UK, as the Monday after a Christmas weekend rolls around.
As we had nothing planned for today it was a very slow and steady start. And after a few days of 'celebrating' it was a chance this morning to catch up on some mundane tasks; laundry and cleaning around.
Over the course of the day we have been catching up with some of our home movie video capture from a while ago. Simon has been taking all of our old home video footage and converting it into digital form so that we have a permanent copy; a copy that will not degrade and is easier to access.
Each time Simon captures the footage we have to watch it back to ensure that the capture has worked correctly and that there are no issues with the sound or playback. Today we have been watching footage from 1997, the year of my first pregnancy!!
While the video played I have been able to get a little more jigsaw completed - it's slow going but it's beginning to take shape now. Simon took time out to have a gym workout session; he is much more motivated than I am! I'm finding myself in a bit of a low ebb at the moment and the desire to do 'anything' is pretty much non-existent.
I've also been doing a little research into electric car charging points as we have a couple of lengthy car journeys coming up and we will need to re-charge the car en-route. There are multiple charging companies out there with chargers of different capacities and they all seem to have different mechanisms of paying. Some need an app while others are just card payment...it's all a little confusing and I think may take a bit more investigating to get my head around all the different options. Thankfully we will be travelling on main motorways so finding a charging point shouldn't (in theory) be a problem.
And there we have today, a very quite day.
See you tomorrow.
Sunday 26 December 2021
The day after Christmas and as it is known here in the UK, Boxing Day. A day to either catch-up with those you missed yesterday or as was the case here to chill out and pretty much do nothing.
We had a lovely day yesterday that was spent with Molly and Dan home for a few days and my dad joined us for some of the festivities.
After the traditional Christmas Day breakfast of Mickey waffles (well the 'kids' indulged) it was a civilised approach to opening presents which we spread throughout the day. This gave us all chance to enjoy the exchange whilst also allowing me time to cook the dinner.
In the lull between present opening and eating Molly and Dan were able to load their car up with the remainder of Molly's stuff that they hadn't yet been able to get down to Dan's house. This involved loading the car with a kick bag, a mountain bike, resin craft making supplies while at the same time making sure there was room for their overnight bags and Christmas presents and goodies.
Simon fetched my dad just in time for Christmas Day dinner; a traditional affair with turkey, pork, veggies, pigs in blankets, stuffing and even mashed potatoes! The only time that I ever make mashed potatoes, and again this is for the benefit of the 'kids' (and my dad)!! Pudding was a choice of traditional Christmas pudding or chocolate sponge pudding and custard!
The remainder of the afternoon saw more present exchanging, grazing on food and after Simon had take my dad home we opened up the board games. Ethan had bought Molly a Disney themed drawing game for Christmas so we gave that a go which led into us playing the classic Pictionary! Much laughter was had by all.
|Christmas Day 2021|
|Nightmare Before Christmas poncho|
|Apron - Disney style|
|More earrings...because a girl can never have enough!|
|Cute Mickey sweater vest (or as I would call it a 'tank top')|
|Disney Villains Bag|
Saturday 25 December 2021
Just a very quick post to say Merry Christmas to one an all.
I hope that everyone has been able to enjoy the day with those they hold dear and that Santa was kind.
We have had a day filled with family, food, presents and silly board games.
See you all tomorrow.
Friday 24 December 2021
Not only have we reached Christmas Eve but it is also Ethan's birthday!
Our day started rather early as Simon had an appointment at the barbers at 8.00am!
But after he'd arrived home we had our traditional birthday breakfast of Mickey waffles - sausage, bacon, waffles, ice-cream and maple syrup! Although it was mainly the 'kids' of the family that indulged!
We had a little Christmas miracle happen this morning as yesterday I'd received an email and a text to say that a parcel we were due to receive by today at the latest was delayed and wouldn't be with us till the 29th! This was rather annoying as the parcel contained Christmas presents! But this morning I had a text to day that the parcel would be delivered today...and by mid-morning it had arrived - phew!
Next on the agenda was a trip into Nottingham which has also become a custom on Ethan's birthday; a chance to have a wander around their Christmas market. Molly and Dan also wanted to head over to the ice stadium to get their ice skates sharpened. We all jumped in the car which was the first chance we'd had to show off the new electric car to the kids, and we think all were suitably impressed.
We walked over to the ice stadium only to discover that there was no-one working who could sharpen the skates for Molly and Dan. It was slightly annoying as there was nothing on their website to indicate that the service wasn't available. But we were still able to have a wander and a stop for coffee and cake!
|Walking through the Christmas market|
|Indulging in coffee and food!|
Thursday 23 December 2021
We have a Thursday and we have Christmas Eve Eve!
After a lovely evening out yesterday it was a steady start to the day, in fact it was the first day in a while that we didn't need to be anywhere or doing anything.
But last night was a mixture of cocktails (not for me as I find them too sugary!), wine, great food (lots of which were on sticks!) and good company. It was nice to be out with the girls from work and to be able to not be in 'work mode'! It was also great to be 'out, out' and getting a little glammed up and doing something that felt almost like normal...save the staff wearing masks!!!
|All glammed up!|
|Meat on a stick!|
Wednesday 22 December 2021
Wednesday and the first day of my seasonal break from pre-school, but there was no chance of a lie in today as we had the big Christmas grocery shop to collect first thing.
So off to Asda we headed to collect the said shopping although their new system of 'click and collect' is leaving something to be desired. The previous system was quick; arrive at the locker, input your order number and get your shopping. Now the shopping is brought out to you from the back of the store and by using their app the shopping should be there waiting for you. But unfortunately the app isn't working properly (and hasn't for weeks), the link in the email confirmation doesn't work and the staff on duty don't really seem that organised! But I suppose it still beats having to go in store and get all the shopping myself!
Although I had forgotten to order a couple of bits so on the way home we stopped by Lidl and came away with more than we went in for! Back home and it was time to unpack the shopping and to discover I was missing two items, one substitute that really wasn't suitable and peppers that were not in a great condition! But I still have a fridge that is bursting at the edges as is the tradition at Christmas!
After a spot of lunch I remembered that I had some updating of learning journal entries for pre-school which took me longer than I really wanted or thought it would.
And while it was still daylight I decided to get my make-up done for going out with my work team later on this evening. Although the overcast and grey day didn't give me as much natural light as I would have liked.
Before getting my glad rags on Simon and I sat down for an hour to watch the final episode of Hawkeye, and we loved it. We have both really enjoyed this series and probably like this the best out of all the Marvel series that have been released this year. I'm hoping that when I get home later this evening our favourite Screen Crush with Ryan Arey on You Tube will have posted his easter eggs and references video for us to watch, as this has become a tradition for us.
Well, I am all dressed up, make-up applied, hair coiffed, handbag organised and shoes (well Dr Martens!) about to go on ready for our works Christmas meal out. Should be a lovely evening in a pub that I haven't been to before, but one that everyone raves about, with a great bunch of girls. I shall report back tomorrow and let you know how it all went.
See you then.
Tuesday 21 December 2021
This will be a very quick post today as it is now very late in the day!
But today has been my last day in work before Christmas and I can now say that school is out for the holidays.
We had a very relaxed day at work ending with a Christmas party for the children. I wasn't able to stay for the party as it clashed with my longstanding hair appointment!
But I had a productive day in work getting all that I needed to get done completed before we finished for the term.
After a quick stop at home I headed back out the door for a couple of hours of chill out time as I had my hair refreshed; keeping it blonde and extra short (which may be advantageous if lockdowns are looming again!).
And that was today and tomorrow will be the first day of my holidays and will start the mad rush towards Christmas!
See you tomorrow.
Monday 20 December 2021
Well, we have a Monday and the penultimate day at work for this year...although ordinarily I don't work Mondays! But today I was only in for a couple of hours to help out another colleague.
But it did mean that I could get ahead of some last minute admin bits and bobs, including the very important task of setting up the payment of wages!
By around 11.15am I was home and it was time to figure out the rest of our day. Both Simon and Ethan have already finished work for the holidays and Simon had spent a couple of hours this morning working on his personal website. But we had other ideas for this afternoon...
Onto the internet I jumped and I was able to secure two tickets to go see Spiderman No Way Home at a local cinema at 12.25pm! The cinema on a weekday and at a lunchtime, something that only ever seems to happen around Christmas. We grabbed a coffee and a quick bite to eat before heading off to a great little cinema on the outskirts of Nottingham. The Savoy has been in place since 1935 and is in fact the only surviving pre-Second World War cinema in Nottingham!
So how was the movie I hear you ask? Absolutely fantastic; I laughed, I held my breath, I cried and then I cried at least twice more. It was what a superhero movie should be all about, a chance to switch off your brain and marvel (see what I did there?!) at the action taking place in front of you. It was filled with story and characters and emotion as well as all the special effects and action shots. And all the cast were brilliant and I have a new appreciation for Tom Holland...all I will say is there is a topless scene...and then I had to remind myself I am old enough to be his mum!!! But seriously go and see it, support your local cinema, and lose yourself in another world - something I think we all need a little of at the moment.
On the way home we stopped off at a local supermarket to pick up a few bits and pieces ahead of a bigger shop later in the week as we get ready for Christmas and indulge in the tradition of buying way more than we actually need!
Back at home and we decided to grab a coffee and sit and watch a few You Tube pieces all about the Spiderman movie. We have a little habit of watching a channel called Screen Crush with Ryan Arey who does some amazing dives into all the easter eggs and references for a lot of the movies and TV shows that we watch. It's always great fun to see if we have spotted anywhere near the amount that he can find.
And that was Monday, I think I may have a little time to put a few jigsaw pieces in place and then it will be time to chill, drink some wine and have a little extra dark chocolate ahead of my last day in work for the year tomorrow.
See you all then.
Sunday 19 December 2021
Well after a rubbish nights sleep (thanks night sweats!) it was a slow start to this Sunday morning.
Late morning we took one of our elderly neighbours out for a coffee. She has been very intrigued with the prospect of us having an electric car and so we had promised to take her out for a drive and a coffee once we had it.
I think she was suitably impressed and after we had enjoyed a coffee and cake we headed back home. We invited her in for more coffee and chat and to show off our Christmas decorations.
Our neighbour very sadly lost her husband to dementia last Christmas and as her children all live abroad she has had to cope with it all on her own. She was hoping that one of her sons and his family would be spending Christmas here with her this year but the current 'pandemic' situation has put paid to that. This is the unseen, and not talked about enough, side of the restrictions that are being forced upon us; an elderly lady cannot see her family at Christmas, never mind the first anniversary of the death of her husband who she had been with since the age of 16 (she is now 84). The heartlessness that is going on is beyond belief.
But back to my day...and a very quiet rest of the day split between jigsaw time and a few mundane jobs.
Nothing much more to say for today. Time to cook dinner and then stop and disconnect for a few hours; today feels like one of those days that as rumours abound with what will be happening, and when, I need to step away from social medias and shut the world out...if for just a little while.
See you tomorrow.
Saturday 18 December 2021
And we have arrived at the weekend...the weekend before Christmas!
My day started with a little podcast recording for this week's episode of the Disney Dream Girls. It's been a couple of weeks since Michelle and I have been able to record due to 'life' getting in the way so it was lovely to have a chat about all things Disney.
While I recorded Simon was able to nip out to the post office as we had a parcel and some Christmas cards that needed posting. We then had a few jobs around the house to get done; there were multiple loads of laundry to sort, paperwork to file and Molly's phone contract to update.
We then needed to assess the current Christmas present situation and decide whether what we had already bought was sufficient. I was actually quite pleasantly surprised at what we had, although we did jump online and bought a few more bits this afternoon but I'm pretty happy that we have everyone covered.
Although, I've not really had chance to assess what I have bought for Simon so far, but I think I've done pretty well, but we will see!
I then did a little more online shopping but this time of the grocery variety; I have a collection booked for Wednesday but wanted to update it all today so that on Tuesday I won't have to worry too much about it...hopefully! I am busy co-ordinating what's happening this coming week to make sure we have everything we need for Christmas next weekend.
And by late afternoon it was time to stop and indulge in a little jigsaw time. My current jigsaw is proving to be a little tricky and is taking a bit longer than I would like but at least it gives me something to distract myself from all that's happening in the big bad world.
It is easy to become depressed and lose faith in the world at the moment; rumours of more lockdowns that could be happening, hearing of hospitality businesses that are beset with cancellations, a general feeling of malaise over the current restrictions and the worry that the majority will just simply 'go along' with whatever is asked of them whether it makes any sense or not is all a bit too much some days. But we carry on and try to make the best of what we have because what else can we do?
See you on the morrow.
Friday 17 December 2021
We have reached the end of the working week for me and it was my usual full day in work for a Friday.
I had lots of work to be done as we near the end of this term; invoices to create and then email out, registers to bind, funding details to confirm, funding codes to check and new starter packs to start along with the usual banking and emails!
Back home and with a much needed coffee to warm me up my next job was to sort out the butchers delivery that had arrived. A couple of joints of meat for over the Christmas break along with our usual sausage, bacon, chicken and mince.
While I was sorting all that out Simon headed down the gym. He'd finished work earlier than normal, and as his team had reached their goal they have now finished until the new year. Ethan has also finished today until the new year but I still have a couple of days to work next week.
I managed to get an update on my dad's car situation and it's looking highly unlikely that the problem will be resolved before Christmas, so my dad is going to be without transport for at least a couple of weeks.
And I think that is pretty much it for today...see you tomorrow.
Thursday 16 December 2021
A Thursday once more and as I have worked a few extra hours already this week I was able to take the morning off work in lieu of those hours, which gave me a full day at home.
With a relaxed start to the day I started to potter about the house determined to get a few bits and pieces done. I'd got laundry that needed doing and so over the course of the morning I managed to get three loads completed. I then wanted to write a few Christmas cards and sort a parcel for posting and this is where things didn't go quite to plan...
I fetched the address book out of a cupboard ready for card writing and found an old notebook that I'd never used and so decided to throw it out...I then looked in the cupboard a little further and noticed a few other bits and bobs. This then resulted in that cupboard getting a good clearout, and clean, which had a knock on effect onto three other cupboards!
By the end of the morning I'd cleaned and re-organised four kitchen cupboards and had at least two black bin bags full of rubbish! Oops!
As lunchtime rolled around Simon and I decided to go out for one of our lunchtime walks; the first time since late November that we'd been home together on a weekday and the weather was suitable for walking out.
But when we were about three quarters of the way through our walk Simon's phone rang and it was my dad; his car had broken down and he needed our help! Once back home I left Simon at home and jumped in my car to see what I could do to help my dad.
Thankfully he had broken down just a few hundred yards from his house. His car had simply lost all power and the onboard systems were saying that the car had a 'low battery'. Now his car is a very snazzy, high end model and is only just over a year old so there is no way that the battery should be failing. I got on the phone to the recovery company and thankfully they were able to get to us in under an hour.
It turned out that my dad had had a similar problem yesterday while at home and he had phoned the same recovery company who had told him that his cover didn't cover any problems at home. But today when I spoke with the same company they told me that was wrong and that he actually does have the correct level of cover for issues happening at home!!
It transpired that there is a potential problem with the fuel sensor which is causing his car to shut down which meant that it needed transporting to the garage for repair. This in turn meant waiting for the tow truck to arrive. Thankfully, the recovery company really looked after us and recognising that my dad lived just a few doors away arranged for the tow truck to call at my dad's house to collect the car keys before towing the car which saved me and my dad from sitting waiting in a cold car.
This then meant I spent the rest of the afternoon at my dad's house waiting for the tow truck company to arrive.We had been told they would be with us by 4.50pm, and then we had a phone call to say it would be by 5.30pm!
I took the time at my dad's to have a look through some of his Christmas decorations; in previous years he had always decorated the house but the last few years he hadn't bothered. It was always my mum, when she was alive, that was the driving force behind Christmas and she had always decorated the house extensively and it was a rare year when she didn't buy new decorations. It is through my mum that I have a love for all things Christmas and it is this time of year that I feel her presence and miss her a little more.
I managed to find a few boxes and discovered some of her Disney decorations which I have now brought home to add to my own collection;
|Wind chime Mickey|
|There is a missing figure, which we think is probably a Mickey!|
|I already have these as both mum and I bought them at the same time on a trip to Disneyland Paris|
|Love that this has the price tag still on...$12!! Wow!|
Wednesday 15 December 2021
Middle of the week was upon us once again and for me it was another full day in work which ended with our Christmas concert.
The work day was filled with the usual admin bits and bobs and I am busy wrapping up the end of this term and getting ready for the new term after Christmas. There are invoices to produce and email, registers to organise, print and bind and new starters to organise.
And then after the end of our usual pre-school day we hosted our Christmas concert for the first time in two years. A very simple affair with the children dressed in suitably festive costumes and singing a few Christmassy tunes. Much fun was had by all and it was lovely to have everyone together to celebrate the season.
Although a lot of schools have decided against holding Christmas activities in person the current guidance still said that we could go ahead and we decided to stick with our decision. We followed the recommendations and it was lovely to do something that felt more like 'normal'!
Back home and I used the time to get a couple of emails sent before getting dinner ready.
And that was pretty much this Wednesday and all that is left is to settle down in front of the TV to watch this week's episode of Hawkeye!
See you tomorrow.
Tuesday 14 December 2021
And we have a Tuesday and we have had a full day in work for me as I was covering another member of staff this afternoon.
It was a pretty standard sort of day at work, lots of admin, banking and meetings but I managed to achieve quite a lot so was happy with the day. We have a busy day ahead of us tomorrow at work as we have our Christmas concert!!
Once home I had a few parcels to sort through that had arrived today which were all Christmas presents and then I needed to go through some of my emails and get on top of a couple of outstanding ones.
At the end of the working day it was time to head down our gym for a weights workout.
And that was pretty much my day...have I mentioned we got our new car yesterday? I've been able to drive it a bit more today...well just to and from work...but so far I'm loving it!
How sexy does this look?!