Wednesday, 7 June 2023

Wonderfully Quiet

Bear had two exams today, which I think were Maths and History. He said that he felt really good about them. I really, really, really hope that it isn't misplaced confidence. He's got the good grades in the mock exams, so there's no reason why he shouldn't be getting them now. I got a little knitting done while waiting. I've got this much yarn left, so I'm not bothering with measuring the shrug, I'll just finish it off and call it quits.

Bear was in a good mood when I picked him up. We got home, he got changed and then he went into the city centre to buy notebooks. Bless him, the lad is a true Yorkshireman and does not approve of the cost of things. He wanted some notebooks to set himself up for A levels. He picked up a couple that have numbered pages and contents pages and was pleased with them apart from the expense. I washed his only functioning shirt and have hung it to dry overnight. I'll run an iron over it tomorrow, which won't take a minute.

Bear wanted a good maths notebook but he also wanted a notebook for the course he's taking online over the summer. I'm not exactly sure what's involved but it's free, online and is something to do with Quantum. Bear is very happy about it. I'm just worried that he'll try and explain it to me. 

Writing stuff - I wrote a brief article about considering murder (from a writer's point of view of course) here, and then, after adding a few thousand words to the work in progress, I realised that there wouldn't be a murder like that in this particular story. I was actually quite pleased that the plan for the story was completely out of the window after 5k words. Normally it takes 20k words or more to get things to gel. And the ideas about murder (for a novel, I hasten to add) will still be there for another story. 

Hugs and good health to all. 

Tuesday, 6 June 2023

I Have No Idea What I'm Doing

This is a normal state for me, but I have no idea what I'm doing. 

We had a new chest of drawers delivered. It's 'new to us' secondhand from the Salvation Army and cost £45 plus £25 delivery. This is what it looked like in the store, as the current resting place is still surrounded by rubbish.

They had some truly beautiful furniture there, but I have no need of it, and nowhere to ut it.

I also had a Morrisons order. There were thirty items, and I think four of them weren't on special offer. I also had a £12 off a £70 shop voucher. I picked up quite a few treats for bear, and I like their frozen meatballs so I included those. I also picked up some tins of their red pepper soup, which I adore. 

The chest of drawers is in place. It's replacing two plastic towers and as it was mainly bear's stuff, he went through it quickly and got rid of most of it. Those towers are going downstairs to hold towels, as the current storage isn't fit, and I'm hoping to get rid of some then. I think that some Dog charities can use old towels. 

I also need to take back a shirt, if they'll let me. Bear has one, sole, single shirt that fits. This means that I will be washing it every day. It has a trace of stain on the shoulder which affects my pride and I went and got an extremely inexpensive shirt from Tesco (with a money off voucher) to tide him over the half dozen times he will need the white shirt. It's too big. It looks like he could camp in it. I hope that Tesco will take it back. I'm fairly certain that other shirts of the same brand and size that fit him are still in the house as I bought six of the dratted things before Christmas, but they are somewhere in his room and I haven't got the energy or heart to keep nagging at him. He's being pretty good, but he is a teenage lad.

Tomorrow he has two exams, so I won't have such a complicated run and I may have some nice knitting time as I wait. 

Hugs and good health to all. 

Monday, 5 June 2023

I Need More Vitamins

I am so tired that any chance of me keeping track of stuff has completely gone. I can barely keep my eyes open. 

And bear didn't help. He asked nicely, but it all got confusing (especially as I was pre-confused already). I dropped him off, picked up the shopping, settled down and got the message that he didn't want picking up at 11am. Please could I pick him up at 3.30pm instead. So I drove home and had a loooong nap as I was so tired that I was worried about my driving. And I forgot the cheese. Still, I nipped into the shop on the way to pick bear up in the afternoon, completely forgetting the cool bag and ice blocks, picked up the cheese and settled down to wait for bear. Who then let me know that his phone was running out of charge but could he be picked up around 4pm or later? I said of course it didn't matter, then hung around, knitting and trying to stay away until 5pm. 

I got us home safely, fed us, then more or less fell into a heap. I managed to finish up the latest instalment of Invitation Accepted (Chapter Sixteen is here) and now I am going to bed.

I shall be back tomorrow to complain about bear's shirt. 

Hugs and good health to all. 

Sunday, 4 June 2023

It's Getting Complicated

I thought that with bear doing exams, my school run would be simpler. However tomorrow he only has an exam in the morning and will want picking up around 11am. But Monday is a shopping day. I always pick up the salad for DH on the way home, along with his fruit for the week. Plus I need to get in some cheese and I could do with picking up some easy drinks for bear. And while I could wait in the car, the chilled stuff would start to warm up! It can easily be as late as 10am by the time I get home if I've got any shopping to do, which is roughly when I'd start thinking about leaving if I was going to pick him up at 11am because the traffic can get a little strange. And if I'd realised earlier, I could have picked up the shopping at the last minute today, but all the shops are now shut and it will be a pain in the neck to work around if I don't pick up the shopping tomorrow. 

So I'm probably going to pack an insulated bag with an ice pack plus my knitting and hang around until he gets out of the test. It's English Language and I know that he's not as confident for that. I want to be clear that he's got time to hang out with his friends if he needs it, but I also know that he wants to get home for some more study. I can see the next couple of weeks being similar - I'm not going to know where I am or what I'm doing when. 

On the bright side, the honeysuckle is doing well.

I need to take some decent pics.

I'm all at sixes and sevens at the moment, and I'll feel a lot better when I've got a few writing projects out of the way and finish the shrug and the Lent sweater - especially as we are now well past Pentacost!

I also need to take bear out to get his clothes for the school prom. He wants to wear a black suit jacket, black suit trousers, a black shirt and a black tie. I said we could look at renting a suit from Moss Bros as he has already grown out of the suit jacket that he wore to his interview in February. To rent a jacket and trousers from Moss Bros is £119.99. To buy a jacket and trousers from Matalan, albeit a lot less well fitting, is £39 for the jacket and £21 for the trousers - £60 or half the rental. As it's a prom for sixteen year olds, I don't think that the fit of the suit is vital. We can leave it in the wardrobe until he grows out of it and then I can (hopefully) sell it. We can put the money from that towards the next suit he'll need for things like University interviews. 

I know that the clothes from Matalan aren't as good quality as Moss Bros, but he's going to wear it once in a dim light. Bear approves of the less expensive option.

Friday, 2 June 2023

Failing at Remembering

I'm sorry but I forgot to post yesterday. I seemed to have my head in the clouds. 

I nipped out and did some knitting, so I guess that I'm an inch or two nearer the end of the shrug. I was parked opposite a lovely wild rose.

When I say, 'parked' I mean, 'more or less came to a stop'

Thank goodness I've got front wheel drive. It was even worse when I called into the Salvation Army charity shop. The car park was pretty full and I got completely stranded. I ended up parking (badly) head first in a bay and had to do a 73 point turn to get out of it. But I picked out a chest of drawers that should be delivered next Tuesday. This is a blessing as Tuesday is the only day that bear doesn't go in for his exams next week, so it means that I can guarantee to be home. He's in most of the week after as well. After that, apart from one exam, school is finished until September.

Today has been a little more productive. I've been working on some writing stuff, I've posted the first book review in ages, I've done a tiny bit of ironing, dragged the airer into the garden to hang the washing as I've been doing lots of washing today and I've even moved and emptied some of the planters that I'll be needing later. There is washing all over the kitchen and dining room as I'm trying to work out what is what. I'll be changing some stuff around as the current set up isn't working at all. I've also got some tiny sponges in glass Gu dessert jars on the windowsills with a few drops of bergamot essential oil, so it's feeling very uplifting.

Some small sponge shapes came in the post, along with a couple of spiral stitch holders and some yarn that I really, really shouldn't have bought. I haven't taken it out of the pack yet, but it's from Temu and is described as Light Camel Squirrel Cashmere Yarn. I haven't opened the packs, but it looks nice. It's probably not squirrel, and at the price I paid it's probably not cashmere either, but it felt lovely and squishy. I think it's a chunky type yarn and is absolutely going to be a blanket. 

And this is my best attempt at a bee on the toadflax near the kitchen door. You can just see her. The garden is getting better and the sun has really helped my mood.

I wonder how much I'll get done tomorrow. I'm going to start again with the studying on Monday, so tomorrow I'm going to try and clear the washing and ironing mountain (it's lovely drying weather), sort out the garden and write five thousand words. I'll let you know how I get on.

Hugs and good health to all. 

Wednesday, 31 May 2023

Definition of Madness

The definition of madness is to keep doing the same thing while expecting different results. I should have known that I would have gone a little adrift. Still, I got some things done. I may not have got any studying done, but I'm just shy of three thousand words on my next writing project. I also rinsed out the recycling bin after it was emptied, did a little ironing, posted a couple of things on eBay and did some overdue life admin. 

I was also cold. I don't know if anyone remembers this, but it's supposed to be a shrug when it's finished. I have around ten more inches to go, and I dug it out because I really wanted something like this around me. As it was I was wrapped in a blanket over my sweater and top. 

I plan to settle down to a good knit while watching Sewing Bee tonight and hopefully get an inch or so knitted.

While I was in the garden I took this pic. 

Originally the yellow bin was on top of here, but the rats had dug under the paving stones to make a little tunnel for themselves. You can see the gap in the brick. This is incredibly useful. You see, many, many years ago, before bear was born, someone helped us in the garden but left that strip a compact and hardened strip that was useless, which is why we put the stones on top and parked bins there. Now we have moved the bins, I put in some sweet peas which I hope will do well, even though it's a little shaded. You see, when the rats dug through, they left a pile of the softest, well aired, well turned soil in the garden. I wish that they would attack some of the other beds. Though I suspect that they may have taken soil from the honeysuckle container. 

Tomorrow I'm going out as we'll need salad, so I'll take my knitting and have an hour knitting in the car. I also need to study and get some emails sorted out. I'm going to aim for 5k words again, though it's a big ask, and I want to do a very small amount of ironing. I also want to catch up on things like reading the blogs, which is always a good time for me. 

I feel that this month has somewhat slipped through my fingers. I'm determined to take hold of things and keep some sort of schedule. It's a work in progress, though, and we'll have to see how it goes. 

Tuesday, 30 May 2023

What Day Is It?

With bear having effectively finished school apart from a few exams, and after all the bank holidays, I'm having trouble keeping up with things. I only remembered to take the bin out at the last minute and I am worried that I'll lose any sense of time at all.

I'm not getting anywhere far with the garden. I've done a few bits here and there, and I'm keeping up with watering, but I'm not really achieving much. The fuchsia is, of course recovering.

Not only can you see the outrageous quantity of weeds, but there are also a few flower buds on the thing. It will be the size of my car before I know it. 

Bear continues working hard. Also, plenty of games. I'm leaving him to it. 

I've set some plans for tomorrow and I'm going to risk sharing them. I plan to write 5k words, do two lessons on the online course I've signed up to, sort through the mountain of clothes and misc textiles in the dining room and pot up the herbs that I bought. I'm not planning on leaving the house, so I should have time. To be honest, it's a fairly tall order, but I'd rather have a target to aim at and I'll see how it goes. 

I also want to see how my steps go. Yesterday I wandered around a lot of shops and was just under the 6k steps target. I wonder if I can get to target just by working around the house. I won't get the benefit of 30 minutes brisk walk, but it would have to be worth something. 

I'll report back on any success and failures. Whatever happens, it should be fun.

And for a success, the birds seem to be coming back to the feeder and I think the rats are giving up. The 'squirrel resistant' feeders may be 'rat resistant' as well. The suet block that attracted the rat yesterday wasn't in a resistant cage and is all gone, but the rest seem to have had normal eating from birds. Now that the suet block has all gone, I hope things will settle a little.

Hugs and good health to all.