Tuesday, 23 December 2008

A ROUND BLOGGING LETTER



It's traditional at this time of year to send a Round Robin Letter to friends and family you've not been in touch with for a while...so here's my Round Blogging letter...to let all my blog pals know that I'm thinking of them and wishing you all a truly Merry Christmas and the Happiest of New Years.

My studies are going really well and I really enjoy University.....I just hope I can continue there!!! I'm struggling financially to stay on..........we are lucky in England to have a Benefits system...but it seems ludicrous that I can stay at home doing nothing and receive money to live on plus get my rent and council tax paid...yet if I go to Uni all my student loan gets me is enough to pay my rent!...and Babergh District Council (unlike other student's councils) still expect me to pay full council tax!!!! But I mustn't complain..... I'm sure many have been hit by the recession that we are all going through.

So let's put that behind me ....'cos it's CHRISTMAS!!!!.....time to worry about that in the New Year.

So first of all a bit of 'own trumpet blowing'.....I was the only one to get a '1' for an assignment...Yahoo!!! Who says you can't teach an old dog new tricks????

To be honest I'm quite boring at the moment....all I do is READ!!!!....everything I'm learning is so fascinating....I'm reading everything I can get my hands on!

I did have a brilliant trip to London to see the Capa photography exhibition and a a play about Thomas Hobbes at Wilton's Music Hall...you can FEEL the history in the theatre!!!

Typical!!!! it seems I can't upload any more photos...even though I've PAID my Google account....I sometimes think the 'God of Capitalism' is working against me.....and it's put a bit of a damper on this post as I had SOOOOOOO many photos I wanted to show you.

So no photos...no fancy Christmas Wish Glittery animations......................

All I can do is wish all of my blogpals a VERY MERRY CHRISTMAS and the HAPPIEST OF NEW YEARS.....

and to a special blogpal who is recovering from an operation....FORTE!!!!!!

Thursday, 6 November 2008

Dona Nobis Pacem

I know that today most of my fellow Blogblasters will be posting about the end of war and peace between countries across the globe.
I intend to leave that to them; I want to post about peace slightly nearer to home. Over the last few months I've seen so many of my friends arguing with their loved ones; husbands, children and friends.
Monday would have been Mick's and my Wedding Anniversary. We were one of those couples who seldom argued; maybe a small disagreement now and then; but we were both of the same mind....that in the great scheme of life...petty trifles were negligible.
I see my friends arguing over such silly things....I want to bash their heads together and remind them how lucky they are to be together...I want to tell them the sadness they would feel if they lost the person they were arguing with.
All over the world people are fighting and dying for peace for far nobler causes than...coming in half an hour late for dinner...having the one drink too many and falling asleep.....forgetting to buy the milk on the way home from work..etc etc etc!!!
My one small voice may not be able to stop the wars around the world...but if it will make you stop and think and prevent one petty squabble...who knows...maybe like a pebble dropped into a lake...the ripples of peace will spread.







Saturday, 4 October 2008

SNOWED UNDER!

Don't panic!!!.....no we've not had snow yet here in Great Cornard.......though we did have our first FROST last night. I admit at the moment I've relented and put the gas fire on for a while.....

Actually I'm snowed under with reading and writing up notes. I can't believe how much paperwork I've got in my folders and we've only just finished the second week! Admittedly despite the reading lists being VERY LONG we are not expected to read everything; though all class handouts are a must.....but it's all so interesting that I'm trying to lay my hands on anything I can. It's much too expensive to buy all the books suggested (even on ebay or Amazon etc) but quite a few I've managed to get from the Uni library or my local library in Sudbury. I'm make great use of e-resources too. I've discovered Google Books and some of the books I need to read have limited previews on there and my Google Library is slowly growing.

I may well have mentioned on a previous post that the three modules for this semester (up until Christmas) are
'An Introduction to Drama' (Sophocles' Antigone, The Glass Menagerie, Macbeth and The Dolls House)
'From Cradle to Grave'.......England 1560-1720...seeking to understand the "otherness" of the past
'An Introduction to Political Ideas'....Machiavelli, Hobbes, Locke, Rousseau, Wollstonecraft, Utilitarianism, Marx, Lenin, Nietzsche, deBeauvoir and Fascism

ARE YOU STILL AWAKE!....HOPE I'M NOT BORING YOU ALL TOO MUCH!



I've my first essay to write too.....'Death in Antigone'

Nikiphoros Lytras, Antigone in front of dead Polynikes (1865)
Oil on canvas, 100 x 157 cm. National Gallery of Athens

Still not quite sure how I'm going to afford being at Uni for the next 3 years...no lodger or job yet!....but one bit of good news is I've managed to get a lift to and fro with another girl who lives in Sudbury. It does mean a bit of a walk to get to her house but paying my share of the petrol is about £8 cheaper a week than going by bus. Even better still it means I get home about an hour earlier than I would if I went by public transport.

Gosh...all this chat about Uni...I'm going to have to change the title of my blog to Me, My Life, University and My Garden (when I get the time to garden)! Actually the garden is still doing quite well despite a little neglect over the last couple of weeks. When I have set a day to one side to do gardening it's peed down with rain.....maybe the powers that be are giving me a sign that I should get back to those books!

Speaking of money....I found some fabulous bargains at our local Tescos...it seems they had over ordered their fruit and vegetables and were selling bags of carrots, potatoes, oranges...you name it they had it on offer.....all for between 5p and 10p a bag! I do hope that who ever did the ordering didn't get into too much trouble as they have certainly done me a favour...I'll definitely be having my '5 a day' for the next week or so.

fruit and scales

Before I do return to my essay and books.....just time for a quick plug for this years Blogblast for peace..........................


Just click on the banner to learn more!

Wednesday, 24 September 2008

THE PRINCE & THE PAUPER!

'Benefits should be conferred gradually;

and in that way they will taste better.'

~Niccolo Machiavelli~



How apt that statement seems........the 'powers that be' have cocked up had a technical hitch and not paid out the student loans. I don't intend to go on to much about it as, otherwise, I really enjoyed my first day at Uni. Let's just say there were a lot of long faces in the first seminar....and when we can all afford to go shopping I'm sure the food will 'taste better' as we will have waited so long to buy it!


I'm sure our lecturer never expected that one of Machiavelli's quotes would be used to complain about Student Loans not arriving!


As I hinted in my last post....I really know so little about politics, past or present...but the seminar was fascinating. We looked at some parts of 'The Prince' and had some lively discussion about the rights and wrongs of some of Machiavelli's ideas. As soon as I got home I couldn't wait to get on the computer and start 'googling' around to read more. I found some great sites and so many differing points of view.....exciting stuff! If Hobbes, Locke etc etc stimulate me as much I think I'm going to enjoy this module much more than I expected.


Tomorrow we have our first 'Introduction to the study of drama' and 'From Cradle to Grave' lectures. 'Greek Tragedy' and 'mortality in the 16th century'.....what a cheery couple of topics....LOL
I'm sorry this is only a short post but I want another quick look at 'Antigone' before I go to bed. I can't leave wihout posting a photo though.......so here's a photo of a Cinnabar Moth...for no other reason than it's the first time I've ever photographed one!

Sunday, 21 September 2008

UPSIDE DOWN AND ALL OVER THE PLACE

Well tomorrow's the big day...my first day at Uni! I do wish our first class/lecture/tutorial wasn't 'An Introduction to Political Ideas'. I'm not really au fait with Machiavelli, Locke, Hobbs etc. Still I bet I'll know a lot more by this time tomorrow. I must admit I'm a bit upside and all over the place at the moment...a mixture of excitement and nerves...a bit like the rainbow that was seen during the week.Not my photo.....and if you want to know more just click on the photo and follow the link.


I had a great evening on Friday...I invited a few friends round for a 'bring a bottle and plate of food' evening. It's something I and a few friends have been doing lately...a girlie evening when we have a few drinks, some food and play games. This week we played Articulate...so much fun and laughter.......
and (somehow) although I drank plenty of wine, finished off the evening with coffees liberally laced with brandy and didn't go to bed until 3.30am I managed to be wide awake with no hangover by 6.30am. I do enjoy evenings like this......we've played quite a range of games, Yahtzee, Uno and Jenga to name a few.
Weatherwise....suddenly Summer has appeared...we've had some glorious sunny days. Quite handy as I've been helping a friend (who rents out a house) to clear the garden up...the last tenants left it in such a state and it need a good tidy before she could show the house to potential tenants. It has a lovely open view across the fields.......what joy it would be to have this view from your bedroom window each morning......You may wonder what I'm doing blogging if the weather's so lovely....well as I still have Rob's (son) laptop I'm happily typing this in the garden....there I am on the bench...well I would be if I wasn't taking this photo.......Talking of photos....I snapped these two cars when I was out shopping.......
Oh this weather is lovely.........I could quite fancy a swim in the sea.......during the Summer Lynn took Manda & co and myself to Aldeburgh. I had a lovely time in the sea..... There's a fabulous sculpture on the beach......




and walking along the sea front I saw this sweet little house.........
As Lloyd Grossman would say.."I wonder who lives in a house like this?". I must say Aldeburgh also has the best fish and chips I've tasted for years!

Well that's enough blogging for now.......the fish need feeding..........


Gosh they were hungry....and I think I see a few roses that need dead heading......Till next time...............................



'Our happiness depends on the habit of mind we cultivate.

So practice happy thinking every day.

Cultivate the merry heart, develop the happiness habit,
and life will become a continual feast.'

~Norman Vincent Peale~



Wednesday, 17 September 2008

I'm in the undergrowth

I'm really busy at the moment helping a friend who is letting out her house. The last tenant left it in a disgusting condition and the garden looks like a jungle......and I don't mean one of those elegant tropical gardens. So with machete, secateurs and loppers in hand I'm going to try and make it resemble a garden again. I shall return if some wild animal doesn't get me first....lol
tiger

Meanwhile....though being homeless is no laughing matter but I couldn't help giggling at this;

I was walking down the street when I was accosted by a particularly dirty and shabby-looking homeless woman who asked me for a couple of pounds for dinner.

I took out my purse, got out ten pounds and asked, 'If I give you this money, will you buy wine with it instead of dinner?'

'No, I had to stop drinking years ago', the homeless woman told me.

'Will you use it to go shopping instead of buying food?' I asked.

'No, I don't waste time shopping,' the homeless woman said. 'I need to spend all my time trying to stay alive.'

'Will you spend this on a beauty salon instead of food?' I asked.

'Are you NUTS!' replied the homeless woman. I haven't had my hair done in 20 years!'

'Well, I said, 'I'm not going to give you the money. Instead, I'm going to take you out for dinner with my husband and me tonight.'

The homeless Woman was shocked. 'Won't your husband be furious with you for doing that? I know I'm dirty, and I probably smell pretty disgusting.'

I said, 'That's okay. It's important for him to see what a woman looks like after she has given up shopping, hair appointments, and wine.'

Thursday, 11 September 2008

THE BLACK HOLE DIDN'T GET ME

Well I haven't fallen into a black hole so I guess it's safe to do another post. I've now had my Uni Induction day and can't wait to get started. Trying to find a part-time job or a lodger. I'm lucky in as much as I get a grant while I'm going to Uni...(an explanation for those who don't know how it works here...I get a means tested grant which is really a loan that's repayable if I get a job when I've qualified and am earning over £15,000 a year). The grant I'm getting though doesn't cover my expenses. As a single mature student with no dependants I'm not entitled to any help with my rent so once I've paid that and my fares to Uni I'm left with £30 a week to pay all my utilities, books, clothes, food and drink. Well £30 will only just cover the water, gas and electric ...hence why I'm looking for a job which will fit around Uni and still allow me time to study, do assignments etc. No so easy at my age!



give us a job

Is it another sign of being old that Summers used to be so much sunnier? We seem to have had so much rain this year. Admittedly I've not had to do so much watering but with the garden being North facing it needs more sun than it's had this year. The Cannas and Gingers were later than usual flowering....................

And I had quite a surprise when I started to clear out the shed. In the Spring I'd had a pot of indoor Hyacinth bulbs which I'd popped in the shed to die down so I could plant them out in the garden this Autumn. Well look at this!They've started to flower again! One plant that really thrived this year was my neighbours 'bxxxxx' Russian Vine. Yet again no matter how much I keep chopping it back it's still strangling anything it comes into contact with! GRRRRRRR!!!!!!!


Well Sophocles and his Three Theban Plays awaits me.........see you again soon.




bookworm

Making Use Of My Photos!

I must admit to save a few pennies I've been making cards for friends and relatives birthdays. Not those beautifully sculptured art & craft cards.....just simple ones using some of my photos. It's been fun to do.....especially if I have a good (or funny) photo of the recipient. A speech bubble here and there can result in a very personalised cards. In Phil's (grandson) case I found a photo of his favourite football player and with the aid of a speech bubble had him saying "Happy Birthday Phil". They seem to have gone down with family and friends well and have saved me a fortune. A decent card with a nice rhyme inside can cost upwards of £5.......

With...dare I mention it....Christmas looming on the horizon I've been wondering if I can use some of my photos in personalised gifts. Perhaps one of my flower photos as a Photo Canvas or maybe personalised Calenders. There must be lots of Photo Gifts that would make good Christmas presents. Even nicely framed Photo Prints of memorable occasions would be a lovely gift to receive.

Sadly I'm not clever enough to make anything like this AND make it look professional. Isn't this age of technology wonderful when companies like Photofun.com will do the work for you. Just load up your photos, put in your order and (for much less cost than a shop bought item) the gift arrives in the mail. The only difficulty is choosing which photos to use!


AND you get 100 free photos when you sign up!

Wednesday, 3 September 2008

GONE BUT (HOPEFULLY) NOT FORGOTTEN

ohhh...errrr... haven't done this for a while. I guess it's like riding a bike...once you've learned you never forget. A bit wobbly to start though!!!

bike crash

OOOPPPS!!!.......

Right then a quick catch up:
I passed all my assignments
I passed all my exams
I've enrolled for University (they have one at Bury St Edmunds ..an offshoot of UCS)
I'm going to do my BA Hons English & History
Still broke!!!....need a part time job or a lodger...any offers????
The (close) family are all doing well...love each and every one of them
I won't be blogging regularly and don't promise to visit you all
I am on Facebook now though; so add me as a friend if you are on there too (already found a few blogpals)
Still taking too many photos!
Still enjoying the garden
Borrowing Rob's (son's) pc while he tries to repair mine
Still smoking.......yes I know I shouldn't and can't really afford it but a girl's got to have ONE vice in her life
Have put on weight...doing netball traing and a few exercises to try and lose it......don't mention dieting.....I SAID 'DON'T MENTION DIETING!!!!'
Most of all.....still missing my soul mate.......................................................



Ermmmmm....can't think of anything else......................

Anyway won't bore you with loads of photos except these at the moment.....

The building where I'd be having my tutorials...

Nice gardens........

Trust me to notice that!!!!!!

Hope you're all well and wishing you health, wealth and happiness and leaving you with this thought...


"Wisdom doesn't automatically come with old age.

Nothing does except wrinkles.

It's true, some wines improve with age.

But only if the grapes were good in the first place."
~Abigail Van Buren~

Really hoping I'm a 'good grape'


grapes

Monday, 14 April 2008

Hi Folks it's me again
As a way of explanation t0 those like Gledwood who suggest I use the computers at college to post my blog. As I depend on a lift from J to get to and fro from college I am unable to stay outside tutorial time to post as it would mean missing my lift home...plus any time I have to spare in a lunch hour I have to spend typing up assignments and doing research.
I will try to get my pc sorted out as soon as I can but at the moment I have no income at all while my (hopefully) benefits are being sorted. I have explained the situation to one of my tutors and she has said that she will do all that she can to enable me to finish the course. All assignments done and handed in now...just have to wait for the last three to be marked....then revision for exams in May!
This afternoon is our last IT tutorial and luckily I have finished all my work so our IT tutor has said I can have a play about on this computer to do whatever I wish.....so my chance to do this post.
Many thanks to all my dear friends who sent emails in memory of the Day Mick passed away...the family and I were deeply moved by all your kind thoughts. We carry on the best we can...always remembering the words of one wise blogger
FORTE!

Tuesday, 1 April 2008

Hi Folks! I'm staying with Leanne and Co for a couple of days so taking advantage of her computer. Many thanks to all of you who have been concerned as to why I'm not posting and thanks to Mrs Nesbitt for posting in my comment box to explain that I am 'sans pc' at the moment. So far so good at college. No referrals so far...in fact between you and me I've had some really good comments on my work by my tutors. Three assignments to do over this Easter break so I've been scribbling away on paper, tearing my hair out and pacing the floor. Hopefully I can get the bulk of it typed up while I'm here. Exams in May and also a Project to do so keeping busy.


Unfortunately no photos as I didn't bring my camera to pc lead with me (sure there's a proper name for it but it escapes me at the moment). Suffice it to say that the garden is doing well considering that it was covered with snow at Easter!


There have been some emotional times; March 4th would have been Mick's 65th birthday and the 1st anniversary of his passing away is on April 6th but I won't dwell on that. I did try to sign on to Job Seekers as the bereavement benefit I've been existing on ends today. However, it transpires that although I am willing to work when I'm not at college this is not allowed. If I wish to go on Job Seekers I have to come off the course. To have come so far and then not be able to finish it seems ridiculous especially as the whole point of my going on the course was to put me in a better position to find work. What is even crazier is that if I do give up the course the DHSS could well put me on a course to help me get a job!!! Anyway things are a bit in abeyance at the moment ...fingers crossed I get something sorted out.


The gardens doing quite well considering that it was covered in snow at Easter. Wish I could show you some photos but you'll have to use your imagination. Various types of Daffodils have been in bloom, since January. Irises, tulips, anemone blanda, perennial candytuft etc etc. The Camellia is just starting to bloom and the buds on the Clematis Montana are swelling up nicely.
Once again many thanks for all your messages, unfortunately with no computer I've only just managed to pick them up.
Stay well my friends and keep smiling.

Friday, 15 February 2008

SKY WATCH FRIDAY

Taken Wednesday 13th 2008Taken the same day 2007


It's nice looking back at old photos sometimes......so many memories....I think in future I'll try and post a sky photo I took at approximately the same time last year as well as a current one if I find one in any of my old folders. Have a good weekend everyone...Leanne & co staying for a few days so having a chance to catch up with the family. Then it's back to College on Monday...how the week's flown!!!!!

sky watch friday



If you're taking part in or want to know more about Sky Watch Friday pay a visit to Dot at Strolling Through Georgia

Wednesday, 13 February 2008

ABC WEDNESDAY - D

I've been so good and despite the glorious Spring weather I've stayed in doing my assignments. I'd got to the stage that my mind was so full that I'd even forgotten which day it was. I'm taking a day off today as I'm going out with some of my college pals...which reminded me it is WEDNESDAY. I'd not planned anything for today's ABC post so have raced outside to see what I can photograph. There's not a single dog to be seen on the pavement (sidewalk for my American pals) so it's......



DIS FOR DAPHNE AND DAISY



abc wednesday

If you're taking part in ABC Wednesday


don't forget to visit Mrs Nesbitt's Place and sign in



Friday, 8 February 2008

SKY WATCH FRIDAY

RED SKY AT NIGHT................. MEANS A GARDENER'S DELIGHT.....EVEN IF IT BRINGS OUT THE MIDGES.......
BECAUSE IT BRINGS OUT THE IRISES TOO!!!!!




sky watch friday
SKY WATCH BLOGROLL

It's half-term here next week.......so last day at college for a while. The Sociology assignment I handed in at the beginning of January has finally been marked and I'm pleased to say I got a Pass. My History assignment is handed in now......over the half-term we have two assignments to do so I won't be completely leaving behind college work over the break. I'm still hoping to go to London and visit the Victoria and Albert on Wednesday and on Thursday Leanne & co are coming to stay for a few days ...doesn't leave many days to get those assignments done!!

Have a good weekend everyone.....

SKY ALBUM -

EVERY SUNRISE AND SUNSET WE SHARED WAS PRECIOUS

A TOUR OF OUR GARDEN 2006

MEET THE FAMILY

www.flickr.com
This is a Flickr badge showing photos in a set called family. Make your own badge here.
Thanks Akelamula

DENISE'S WISH FOR US ALL

A 1st Birthday Gift to my Blogpals

Thank you from Ruth

Thanks to Akelamula

creative blogger

Thanks Shaz

Thanks Skittles...worn with pride

created by Denise - given with love

AWARDS!

Rockin' Shaz sxhmoozed me From Mags, Gill, Libby,Denise and Meeyauw