Wednesday, 29 December 2010

The other thing that keeps me awake at night

is this little critter...
scuttling across the roof in the early hours of the morning and proceeding to shell nuts on the Velux window immediately above my head!!!
...but it is hard to get too grumpy when he's so cute.

Friday, 24 December 2010

Doing a 'Nigella'

to ensure ample supplies since we're still snowed in for the festive period. This has involved copious amounts of time in the kitchen accompanied by the Miss Sensible (Strident Student is excused as she earning a crust on Turkey duty at Waitrose, lucky girl).
We are now adequately stocked with shortbread, mince pies, gingerbread cake and the ubiquitous pan of mulled wine is installed on the hob so we should be able to feed any waifs or strays that turn up on the know who you are ;o)

Thursday, 23 December 2010


One requirement of the 'Mum' job description is to make a complete numpty of yourself in the hope of keeping sproglets entertained during school holidays, and today was no exception...except if I'm completely honest I had an absolutely fab time too (despite being a total novice), getting a cold, wet, very bruised arse and a glowing red nose to compete with a certain reindeer :D

Sure beats working...

Monday, 20 December 2010

My good friend Mr.Insomnia is back

well to be honest he's been kicking around again for a while now but I keep vainly hoping I've seen the back of him. For all of you who manage 6 hours a night or more don't ever take it for's really no wonder sleep deprivation was used as a form of torture.

So I woke up in the early hours of the morning again with six million things running through my head like Ticker Tape against a backing track of Gorillaz 'El Manana'. The whole sequence moves so fast I can hardly grasp onto the thoughts never mind work out what I need to do with them. It kind of reminds me of the opening sequence of Monty Python when the head opens and all manner of stuff pours out and morphs into something else. Quite surreal believe me & all created completely without the aid of hallucinogenics!
I do know what the 'elephant in the corner' is that's causing this, but despite my best efforts it's not something I can fix so unfortunately it'll rumble on...

Sunday, 19 December 2010

A fix of cuddles

Due to the inclement weather it wasn't practical to traipse all the way up to Sheffield but since she was going to be bringing a tonne of books back to start her dissertation, I arranged to pick up the Strident Student in Burton which is a stone's throw away from my Bruv's place which also ensured we could spend some time with my incredibly cute nephew :o)

Saturday, 18 December 2010

Tradition dictates

that the Christmas tree is never purchased until after Strident Student and I have had our birthdays. Those events now out of the way, a trip to the Xmas tree farm was called for. Each year without fail each there is a heated debate about the relative merits of the various types of fir &/or shapes before the perfect one is finally selected. This year's specimen is beautiful but having lugged it to the car we discovered it was just that little bit too long :o/ we drove home in -4ยบ with the boot half open!!

A long story involving a hacksaw later, we've now managed to get it into a stand, aligned vertically, raided the loft for various boxes of gubbins and decked the halls, plus an 8ft Nordic fir.

Finally finished the Xmas shopping, turkey's ordered, cards written, parcels all remains is to pick up eldest, finish work...then collapse in a heap with a glass of mulled wine...or two...

Thursday, 16 December 2010

Slightly frazzled

due to brain overload! So far this week I've dealt with everything from ISO audit findings, to a bid requiring specific security clearances, reviewed contracts for Kidnap & Randsom experts, discussed the recruitment of medics for the Oil & Gas business, conducted an appraisal, & briefed the MD on the reorganisation....
and to make matters worse the tin of Quality Street which was in my office has disappeared without trace :o/
Not sure I can carry on without chocolate.....

Wednesday, 15 December 2010

Travel...a chore?

twice this week it's definitely felt like up at the crack of dawn, completed ablutions and hauled arse down to station only to find the 6:07a.m. train cancelled....mutter...
Well I guess it gives me a few spare mins in what's already been a manic week to post to the blog and have a second cup of tea...
Although it's completely knackering doing this journey on a regular basis I have to say I still enjoy it most of the time; particularly the Tube...if that's not displaying too much masochistic tendencies ;o) I love people watching could happily sit and do it all day. What could be better than making up your own 'soap'...weighing people up and trying to work out what they do, where they're off to etc. forming impressions and story-lines that are probably highly inaccurate or improbable! For instance, does the chap who gets on in the Cotswolds wearing a Dearstalker work in Baker Street? Who is the lady knitting the beautiful jumper for? On Monday I was mesmerised by a girl with impeccable purple & green make-up (lurid but somehow it worked!)...on her way back from a glam rock party or off to liven up a boring desk job? Then again there's the fashion many ideas/looks etc.or items to covet - I desperately wanted to ask one woman where she got her gorgeous chocolate leather trench coat. Then there's the Irish lady train driver on the Victoria line who entertains with her comments about the state of the service, peoples' lack of manners and the occasional quip about the forthcoming weekend...some of the more uptight passengers trying to pretend they can't hear her but struggling to stifle a laugh...she should have her own TV show.
Is all of this 'sad' or am I very easily entertained?

Sunday, 12 December 2010

Xmas came early

and brought me a
'Burling & Mansfield' piano!
I played as a child and have quietly wanted a piano for ages but seems a bit excessive spending that amount of money particularly as I'm sooo out of practice. Anyway, one was advertised on the local Freecycle which was too good an opportunity to miss. I could hardly believe I managed to get it, but that was only the start of the hassle....

A man with a van had to be found, then persuade a couple of muscly men that they didn't mind losing an hour or two of their weekend.
Chez Frosty's steep, sweeping driveway is not the easiest to navigate but it turned out the one at the start point was not any better and access to the house was a serious issue.

'Man with van' was heard to mutter if he'd known it was this bad he wouldn't have taken the job! Fortunately he had principles plus an inbuilt 'completer:finisher' work ethic so with a fair amount of hassle & heave-ho the pianoforte is now proudly sitting in the lounge.

Needs a bit of a polish but it's in decent tune so I'm 'dead chuffed' :o)

Friday, 10 December 2010

On my soap box again

Seriously disappointed with the vote yesterday...not the result most rational people had hoped for. Blinking education system in the UK is in a mess at all levels. Secondary school's have far too many conflicting targets and prescriptive approach to the curriculum...I speak from first hand knowledge due to my work with the school governors. As a recruiter as well as a mother I was completely against the Labour government's policy to get over 60% of the population to University. No reason to do that, perfectly ok to have people with vocational courses or apprenticeships etc. It's completely devalued degrees and made the whole situation a farce. If they hadn't tried to be so inclusive the funding wouldn't be as much of an issue. And as for this arguement that half of them won't end up paying it back...laughable to think that makes it acceptable. No wonder so many of that generation think debt's ok.....

Wednesday, 8 December 2010

Almost another year older

...any wiser...??
Looking back over my antics in the last twelve months, I very much doubt it ;o)

Though less than usual due to some of our number being in somewhat more exotic places, the girlies ventured forth into the freezing fog to celebrate another mid-life crisis with a curry.

Special mention has to go to Lou-la-belle for making the most scrummy carrot & orange cupcakes...

Fortunately she desisted from putting significant numbers of candles thereon or the fire brigade would have been required and much as "we like a man in uniform with a large hose", as 'Full English' once shockingly said, we'd much rather have a good natter and put the world to rights...Horlicks or hedonist...definitely the former :o)

Tuesday, 7 December 2010

Minus 10

last night as I sat waiting for Miss Sensible outside the sax teacher's house freezing my bits off. (One of the aspects of motherhood they forget to tell you about...) Needless to say by 3.10am this morning I was coughing my guts up and decided against travelling to London on the crack of dawn train to contaminate the rest of the team. Having angst about that decision I finally switched off the alarm and rolled over only to have my slumbers rudely disturbed by the smoke alarm shrieking at 4.30am!!!

Picture the charging downstairs half asleep, desperately checking for fire. Phew, no sign of anything untoward...but can't stop the bleedin' alarm...ceiling of the joys of living in a Victorian house! So that necessitated venturing into the frozen depths of the garage for a ladder :o/ one else in the house stirred... No idea what set if off and can't be arsed trying to find out...That's the limit of the excitement in my neck of the woods a.t.m...tame, but with some novelty value none the less.

Sunday, 5 December 2010

Being the birthday fairy

is quite a responsibility at the best of times but this weekend she had her work well & truly cut out. Ladened with cards, pressies and cake, ably supported by her trusty assistant Miss Sensible we headed to the grim north for Strident Student's significant celebration.

The motorways were fine, but as soon as we took the junction for Chesterfield it was a different world. The council had obviously had the snowploughs out but despite their best efforts only managed to clear one lane of the dual carriageway into Sheffield and the piles of snow at the kerbside were something else. I'd packed a shovel, a thermos and a blanket just in case but was beginning to think I might be forced to consume said birthday cake or use it to bribe the rescue services if we got stuck! Not sure how far I'd have got without 4 wheel drive, as it was I still had to abandon the car near the bottom of Crookes and do the rest on foot.

The lovely lunch at a restaurant in the Dales was out of the question but we found a fab bistro within walking distance of the house, then later in the afternoon we had a tea party with the housemates which was quite possibly followed by a night of drunken debauchery once her Mum & sister left ;o)

....Still can't quite believe I have a 21 yr old!