Tuesday, November 27, 2007


It's a sort of foggy or misty or cloudy night.
I took Nutmeg out for his late night amble and we both stopped at the top of the steps to view the scene in our different ways. He sat on the top step and sniffed the damp air and I wondered at the glow of the moon through the clouds which gave enough muted light to see quite clearly across the valley.
There was a single light shining over there, probably at the big house. I imagined a time when there might be fewer people in the world and fewer lights. No city glow on the horizon and no traffic on the motorways. Out here in the country you know when there's a power cut in the neighbouring bit of grid and you can guess how far a cut extends. Whether it's Newbury or Reading that's out.
I thought, if we no longer had apparently unlimited power, you'd know if there was trouble over there across the valley ('cos the noises would carry and you'd see lights not doing their usual things) and you might set off through the fields to find out if help was needed or if trouble might be coming your way next. On a night like this you could see where you were going without a torch. Odd because it's easier to see when the moon is veiled as it is tonight than when it's bright and clear.

Well the evening before it was huge like this
And then later it was small like this
And then the day after (today in fact) there was no moon but a kind of golden haze over everything.
And I rediscovered the warm colour setting on the camera which made the golden haze worth taking pictures of even though they didn't come out very sharp. To think I've spent so many hours fiddling with exposures and filters and the camera could have doen it for me by itself!
Oh well, time for bed.
I hope you had golden haze and soft colours today too.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

The computerman cometh

At least, he doesn't yet but I have looked at him and spoken to him and as far as it's possible to make a judgement he appears to be able to understand human speak about computers.
Fact is, with the far distance of Eldest and the elusiveness of computer friend, I feel the need of a pc man of my own and £30 an hour won't break the bank. I might ask him for some references :) I don't suppose he'll offer any though. There doesn't seem to be any computer repair man's watchdog body to check up with, possibly because there isn't an established qualification for such a huge subject?
Eldest said when questioned on the advisability of getting someone in, that he probably wouldn't be able to do much more than Eldest himself. But that is a lot more than I can do and since I'd be paying him, he'd have more time at my disposal...as much as I'd be prepared to pay for in fact.

It's not that the computer is overtly saying "groan, creak, I'm broken" Or even "_______". Just the odd little rumble like missing mouse and restarting required every so often when things hang. I'm being very foresighted for a change. I've had too many experiences of computers suddenly going "_________"at me when I've got used to restarting to sort minor problems. And the other day Norton said it had 'encountered an error' during a scan and didn't finish it. And then wouldn't open at all till I'd restarted. Needs attention.
Not to mention the vanishing of 20 odd 000 photos!!!! However temporary :)
I might ask the man how much a full service would cost. I bet it 'depends'.

But for once, indeed the first time in my computing life, I'm sort of able to consider something like this. All my photos are on a separate external hard drive, back ups have been done and all my really important programmes are genuine, fully paid up items with serial numbers and even some discs!
I could even consider organising a recovery disc thingy! Almost (but not quite) I feel I could make my own back up/recovery disc thingy :)
The main thing is, I feel the possibility of a "________" event looming and for once, I intend to forestall it!
It's a bit like taking the car to a mechanic when you hear the funny noise in the back left hand corner instead of waiting till the back left hand corner falls down and the car bursts into flames :)

And good afternoon to you too :)

This was a very good morning. I only took a few photos from the bathroom window, in deference to the snuffling and coughing thing though. A few stars got left behind in the melting frost.

So, when you start to pour from the milk bottle into your cup of tea and realise just as it blobs in that it's gone thick and will now briskly curdle, do you think "ooh, yoghurt" or "Euw, listeria (or salmonella or whatever's your favourite bacteria)"?
I just can't decide!

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Thursday, November 22, 2007

Today's front page

Sneak preview :)

HF is forbidden to look at my blog till this has disappeared below the blog horizon :) I understand that he can be trusted in this respect!
Meadwhile the cold has, as probised, reached the bugged up head ad sdotty dose stage and I ab goigg upstairs to lie dowd with a book and occasiodally say thiggs like euur add urggh. I bay take a hot toddy with be.
Urrgg choo. Sduffle.

*The reason Fran looks about 10 feet tall is that wedding dresses are apparently designed for giantesses. She's standing on a box, the ready availability of which suggests that most brides are too short for these dresses.

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Wednesday, November 21, 2007

In sickness and in health and of weddings and wealth*

Sometimes the other half of my life is a bit overzealous in the interpretation of our marriage vows. Really I didn't require him to share his cold. I didn't need to find out personally how it's more of a sore throat with chesty cough kind of a thing. Though I suspect the rest of the cold with snotty nose and bunged up head is following on behind.
And I felt that the dental hygenist, though outwardly sympathetic, failed to understand how much I didn't want her to prod my teeth or scrape them or polish them. Not only did she blithely poke and scrape and polish but she suggested two hour long appointments to tackle the deeper corners and pits with the assistance of injections and the dreaded pneumatic tartar smasher. Oh and she dealt with the sore throat part pretty briskly by giving me something to gargle with. Great!
"and what's your long term plan for your teeth?" she asked alarmingly. "Oh I just thought I'd hang on to them as long as possible?" I gargled. She gave me a "Hmm" kind of look and pointed out that smoking wasn't doing them any good. I had a nasty feeling she was going to suggest major mouth reorganisation. Ooh! I don't want to think about that.
I'd much rather think about wedding dresses.
Today, me and Fran went wedding-dress-a-hunting.
Amazingly, the first one she tried on looked absolutely the part. In spite of the badly concealed efforts of the assistants to wow us with more expensive full price articles, garnished in many ways to resemble toilet roll holders, cakes, barbie dolls and other such weddingy stuff, we both, at the end of half an exhausting day and two lengthy trying on sessions, felt pretty confident that the first one was going to be it! So she cancelled tomorrow's appointments and tomorrow we're going to go and talk about hems.
She's going to look beautiful :)

:) :)

:) :) :)
I am a proud mum :)

Right. Barney's made dinner and we've et and it was very very nice and I've got to go and be ill now otherwise he may feel I didn't actually need him to cook.
Don't get too close - you don't want to catch it from me.

*We won't mention the actual wealth part. It won't break the bank totally. Might just leave it a bit the worse for wear. Unlike the hygenist, whose continued attentions may cause the bank to offer me a loan. You know how they do whenever you're feeling as though you've overspent a bit?
I notice that Blogger arranges labels alphabetically. 'ugh' was supposed to go with dental hygeine, not with shopping or wedding dresses.

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Sunday, November 18, 2007


Sunday is a good day for it. I was going to take the washing basket upstairs and fill it but Barney is cooking to Bach's 1st Brandenburg Concerto so I have to stay and listen.However while I'm doing that and blogging, I can sort out the heap of bits of paper with very useful information and important lists on them which currently litter my desk.
Sort of displacement activity really*. Over the years I have done so many displacement activities it's a wonder I haven't ended up in another universe. Well if I had I might not know. So maybe in another universe I am busily filling up the washing basket. Wonder if Barney is listening to Bach over there.**
This bit of this universe is quite warm and pleasant just now. The fires are lit so the wind isn't coming down the chimney any more. Earlier we had a brief power cut which mended itself before I could phone to ask how long it would be dark. I quite like power cuts in a perverse way. I like the sudden confrontation with winter dark and powerlessness. It reminds me that we may have gadgets and wonders but we are still only human. And sometimes I find it a bit hard to live up to the munificence of modern (Western) living and the idea that since nothing is impossible, everything should be achieved. Especially as I often seem to have to defend some of its aspects from the disparagement of my resident technological dinosaur.

Last leaf - gone today.
And woody nightshade berries. Too glossy to eat! (fortunately since they're not edible)

Last rose, hanging in there despite frost and rain and wind and weather.
Too cold to go out but the sun came in anyway and shone on my old glass jar full of stones and shells :)
Got to stop procrastinating now. I've been doing it for a whole day and night and now it's Monday.

*An action designed to draw attention away from a potentially confrontational situation. F'rinstance why are you sitting in front of your computer while I'm slaving over a hot kitchen????
**Or of course, the displacement could be of another kind, whereby huge quantities of space displaced by my having placed myself in them may be piling up somewhere waiting to topple over onto an unwary person. Just keep an eye out for those space heaps. I've no idea where they all went!

How many crisps

Would you expect to find in the average packet?
I don't know either.
I would guess, what, 30? 40? Well just about too many to hold in one hand I would imagine.
So, feeling a little peckish the other day, I bought some rather swish looking crisps called "Darling Spuds" for 75p. Naturally the label suggested all kinds of exceptional goodness. And the packet was quite light so I thought Oh nice, light and crispy crisps (teeth being easily damaged by hard, crunchy, 'handbaked' kinds). Some time later, I opened the packet and felt absentmindedly for a crisp to nibble. After a moment, I looked into the packet, my questing fingers having encountered nothing. I looked harder and found the crisps, nestling in the bottom corner of the packet. All 12 of them! that is, six full sized crisps and 8 broken bits. I thought maybe about half a potato's worth.
That's a very good profit for half a potato! Even for a very special variety of potato. Even for a special organic potato. And they were hard and crunchy and did gum damage. Not my best buy of the week.
I was going to show you a photo but I seem to have mislaid the packet.


Friday, November 16, 2007

It's a wonderworld out there

The last few days. Brilliant sun, mists, frosts, autumn colours, crescent moon. Gorgeous.
So I've not been here much but mostly out there.
I've actually overslept through some of the best bits which is typical. But not this bit :)* And Barney has been laid low with a cold (note; he's learnt - not the hard way but thorough native intelligence - not to suggest it might be any kind of 'flu) and has needed soup and liquids to soothe a sore throat. So I've spent quite a lot of time observing wonderfulness while nipping here and there and being late for things (no change there but not too late for this) in between soup serving and sleep.
Now I'm cooking and blogging.

Some time later after a wrestling match with the computer (mouse suddenly died for no battery related reason - I wonder if the Vista monster is becoming unstable) I'm back.
The wonderfulness during the day is being balanced out by the extreme cold at night. All very natural at this time of year but my feet are freezing and I'd like to tuck them into a warm bed so I'll make this short :)

One of the cats is becoming antisocial in some of its housekeeping habits. There was a wet patch and a ripped up newspaper on the sitting room floor this morning and something nasty in the bathroom a few days ago. The cats are now being banished from the warm inside of the house to the kitchen and utility area, at night. This seems harsh but so does pooh underfoot first thing in the morning. As Eldest used to say when he was about five and wanted us to give in about something, "it's your choice". I don't know where he got this idea!

Here be woods. No dragons as far as I know but lots of birds singing. And the sun!!!
We've got a gig tomorrow night. Me and the concertina player had a practice last night which was very enjoyable for us but makes me wonder if tomorrow will be enjoyable for the gig. Still they're a tennis club and past experience reminds us that they are fit, energetic, noisy and cheerful. I'm sure they won't notice a few bum notes! They'll be much too busy:)
And if you want a really good moon, Waitrose has one in the car park. Well, not exactly in the car park, more sort of above and a bit to the left. Just behind the third tree in the centre. Oddly enough there was another one up on Greenham Common tonight but it wouldn't keep still. All my photos of it were blurred.
And so to bed. Goodnight. Have a lovely weekend and I hope the sun shines on you too :)

*I used a free download of Photomatix (which blends exposures to get the out of this world brightness in the shadowed areas)...it comes with a watermark which I roughly cloned out - you can see some blobby bits here and there as a result:). Photomatix is definitely on my Christmas list this year :)

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Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Panic a lot, NOW!

It's ok, you don't have to panic.
I did though. Picasa said casually, as it sometimes does, " Picasa is optimising database to save space" Oh yeah. Fine. I thought.
Then suddenly, pictures began to vanish. Before my very eyes. Then folders then OMG! The whole H drive declared that it was empty. All my pictures....maybe 20,000??? gone!!!!!
Gone where? Folder after folder...all of 060101 through to 071114 "folder empty"!
I looked at task manager and device manager and HELP!!! and the hard drive, peacefully glowing as it always does. I looked at properties. Properties said the H drive was still full of stuff but none of the stuff could be seen. I tried to detach the hard drive from everything and it said "the generic device burble burble meaningless numbers is being used by another programme and cannot be disconnected now. Try again later" What unmentionable F******g programme for ******* sake???????? I scanned things with Norton. Useless programe said everything was fine. Huh! How is it possible to be fine when it's not there?
I looked at 'recent' and it said "the file has been changed or moved and this shortcut no longer works....shall I delete it?"
I looked at all sorts of things...it's a bit like the days when I drove a mini and I got to know a lot about what to look at under the bonnet when things went wrong. I'm quite good at finding things to look at under the computer's bonnet.
Eventually I fell back on Eldest's standard advice. Restart. (In mini terms, push start).
While the computer chirped and chuntered away to itself I went and filled up the dishwasher and folded my woollies and poured several glasses of wine. From time to time I wobbled my delicate tooth to see if it was still wobbly and hurting. It was. Good. Not dead yet then.
Then I came back and in fear and trembling , started Picasa. Checked the windows folder thingie..Aha! pictures!!!!
I breathed.
Picasa started to put them all back in its data base. One by one. Numbers began to grow. I have pictures again!!!! It's got to 070406 and still going. Bloody slow I tell you!
I wiped the blue and purple spatterings from various outbursts of rage and despair and frustration out of the air around the thrice damned machine. Warmed up the hot and cold space in my head. Put my cardigan back on as I cooled down a bit and remembered it's a damned cold night. Looked at the time and cursed some more.
I'd better back it all up. Onto clunky old DVD's. I'd better tallk to Eldest about RAID. some sort of backing up system he mentioned last time he was here. I'd better put lots of hard drives on my birtday present list. I'd better organise myself to back up once a week.

We've got to 070509. that's May ferC*****'ssake!!!!

25,000 Pictures! (at a rough guess) That's everything I've taken this year, every single photo. Shit!

I just had to say that! Can't get the text colour right now. That'll teach me to play with colours when under the influence of alcohol and computers.

and Oh look! windows would like me to restart now so it can install some important updates! It can wait. Picasa has only got to 070614. If I go away, Windows will automatically restart the computer to,install,its important updates and I can't immediately see a way to stop it. I really don't want it to interrupt picasa before it''s finished putting my pictures back. actually, it's only putting them in its database. If the pictures are there they are there whether or not Picasa can see them. Only I really don't want to come downstairs tomorrow to find that Picasa has managed to hide them all again...just because it's got in a strop when windows interrupted it.

You'll be pleased to hear that I worked my way round the furniture arrangements enough to get my poang chair set up today. You can't get into several rooms because there's surplus chairs and futons lying around but I can now go and sit in the Poang chair for a few minutes before going to bed.
Enough already. It's 03.27. I want to go to bed. It'll have to manage by itself.


Monday, November 12, 2007

Unidentified flying curry and things that bite back*

Ikea was the day. Today. (Monday, I'm a day behind)
We got there (Thursday came too, hooray!) we ate stuff, we had free extra coffee, we did a complete circuit of the labyrinth, drank tea (which was really quite nice) and we got home with multitudinous Ikea items. It only took us er...6 hours?
Well that does include the journey to Bristol and back.
I have to say that Thursday is the most brilliant company and made most of a day trudging round the Ikea monster seem quite acceptable.

Well, Barney and I got his desk up and working**. Unfortunately for me, this meant moving the old bed out of his new 'stamp room' into what will be my sewing room. So I won't be able to get my desk up and running till that's gone (I don't know where it's going). Also, until the futon has been moved out of the music room and into the stamp room I won't be able to put my Poang chair together in there. And I'm really looking forward to the Poang sitting experience. what's more, Ikea was still out of stock of the desk I wanted to use for card making. so I can't have that up yet either.
Then there was the pate. Barney spent a good deal of time in the kitchen, over the weekend, not, regrettably, making dinners and stuff but making pate. It's very very nice. Unfortunately for me, when I had a quick slice while making dinner* it bit back and a small piece of bacon bone attacked one of my teeth. Quite violently I might add. Now you might think the pate was entitled to return the biting but I happen to think not. At my time of life I have to nurture those teeth that remain with me. This tooth make a kind of squelchy snapping noise. Nothing came out however, (except a mouthful of pate expelled at speed and with a squawk of outraged anguish) It all still seems to be in place though the gum and the root area is rather tender. Maybe, just maybe, it'll survive. I'm now trying to decide whether to take it at once to the dentist in case there's something he can do to help it hang on in there. Or whether to let it look after itself. Hmm. By the time I've decided it may have made its own decision. (Good tooth, nice tooth, clever tooth, tough tooth. Stick with me and I'll look after you for ever - promise). Well as long as it's hurting, even slightly, it must still be alive don't you think?***

Well the best things about the day were without doubt, having Thursday's company and coming back with the loot. (there was also a very beautiful, very early, frosty morning expedition but few of the photos amounted to much - I don't think I was really paying attention)

Yesterday though, I went to the woods and took a few pictures as the sun went down. Then, played with them cos the sun had gone quite a lot down and there wasn't a lot of light. Then I got a bit involved with the playing and found a horse that came from the far Northern Pennines. I transported him to the Berkshire woodlands and off he went into the sunset. I hope he'll be happy there.

*In the interests of getting the desk together, dinner was a hastily assembled group of things out of the freezer. One of which was not labelled. But turned out to be an unidentified curry (I lied about it flying).
**It looks very nice. I am evious. No you idiot computer, not devious, envious!
***It's ok, only a very minor hurting: We managed breakfast :)

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Friday, November 09, 2007

I was going to write a post

But instead, I went into the kitchen to make coffee and ended up making bacon and egg and fried potatoes and emptying the dishwasher and letting the dog out and clearing up something nasty the cat brought me and hoovering the dining room and.....
You know maybe I need to re-prioritise. (is that a word? I don't know. If not I made up some gobbledy speak all by myself. Clever? If not, I apologise for using it)

Ok so now I'll write a post.
Here's an autumnal picture. Just because it is.
Along with the general reorganisation of the activities in this household, there has been a suggestion that if we got rid of the piano, there would be room for a bookcase for Barney's books. I didn't smite down this suggestion with the contempt it deserved. Oh no. I said it had its points and well no, no one actually plays the piano any more but we'd have to consider it.
So now I 'play' the piano every day for a few minutes. Well, ok I don't exactly play it and it takes more than a few minutes. And now I can say it absolutely has to be tuned. It's not so much that the D two above middle C is out, but that you can't tell if you've played it or not by listening to it.
Barney's books? Oh no problem. I am the woman who can fit a whole (LARGE) lawnful of stuff, three children and two adults (one long and one wide) into a mini. Elephants optional (but no custard please). So I think I can manage a few books and a bit of bookcase space. *adds bookcase to Ikea list*

Well then, I'm trying to get music back into my life. It's a bit of a squeeze what with cards and photos and blogging and flickr and etc etc not to mention the piano. But I had a wonderful find the other day. I have been using an 'unregistered trial version' of a certain music programme for a few years and when I moved over to Windows Vista it ceased to perform. Fair enough. But I couldn't get hold of a cheap old replacement for love nor money not nowhere. Until a music store from which I once bought a less wonderful programme, sent me a newsletter informing me that they weren't selling the old stuff any more but had negotiated a deal with Sibelius for a cheap crossgrade! (that's cheap as in less expensive but still a lot of money, however it is a LOT cheaper). It took me three days to decide and now I've got it. With the manual and everything and it works !!!!

And then there's Flickr. I've had a sudden upsurge of comment and stuff on one or two photos recently...slightly astonishing to me but very nice all the same. And there's this thing on flickr called Explore, I think it's like a sort of top 500. I've never been able to understand how it worked (nobody does seem to understand it and pictures move up and down the list and disappear and reappear for no obvious reason) and certainly never expected any of my pics to appear in it....I mean there are pictures I've seen with 400 odd comments and upward of 100 favourites. Well deserved too. Anyway I was wondering how you check if you've got a picture on explore the other day and followed a link or two and suddenly it was revealed to me that I've had 6 pictures on explore! 6!!!
Gobsmacked I was for a minute or two! But now I'm bragging about it as much as I can before the moment of glory fades completely :)

Meanwhile, I've decide to dry out. Last weekends excesses made my stomach mutter rebelliously when I looked at a bottle of rather nice wine in the supermarket the other day. I thought I'd give it a break. And a friend told me her (almost non-existent) pot shrank away quickly whenever she dropped the habit for a while. So I thought mine might retreat a little bit. Also I thought I might suddenly start waking up all bright and bushy tailed in the morning if I hadn't taken any strong drink the night before. Sadly neither of these things have happened yet. And my coffee consumption has increased which isn't so good (except that it's nice).

So now it's time for a cup of tea, ten minutes keeping the piano alive, half an hour with the fiddle.

I would like to have this little shed at the bottom of my garden :)

And I loved the toy windows in this toy houseEnjoy your evening and your weekend and
OH! I forgot.
I started this blog because I wanted to put pictures up somewhere. I thought even I might get a response or two here and there. And of course I love to babble on about not very much!
Well there have been lovely people dropping in and out and it's been fun. But some special people still visit and find things to say after, goodness...years!* I believe there are one or two lurkers even :)
Anyway, When I was fishmouthing at the Flickr explore thing the other night, my thoughts came back here, where kind and friendly and generous praise for my photos kept me plugging away when the sun went in and when the wind blurred things and when I got cross-eyed from playing with photoshop. It was here that I got the encouragement to take my photos to a wider world. I am so grateful :) I so appreciate the support you've all given me. I wouldn't, really, have had the nerve to make cards and take them to shops and market without you.
Thank you all :)

*2 and a bit years :)

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Just a quick one

Cos I've been a bit busy. And a lot of quite fun things happening over on Flickr.
So here are some pictures from the last few days and one from September which I forgot about at the time.
Autumn has definitely arrived as you may have noticed

And tis the season of mists and still waters reflecting conveniently passing riders
Bonfires and chilly sunshine
And in September it was apparently the season for cormorants. I saw them at Wilcot water when looking for a lock on the canal and I wondered for a moment if I'd inadvertently wandered to another country. I'm sure they aren't something we used to see in the Wiltshire countryside.
Anyway, I found this while looking for pictures of hops...tell you why another time.
Tomorrow I may have a spare hour...if I don't oversleep. which I might do because it seems to be quite late again.

I hope you are all sleeping the sleep of the just and enjoying it.

Sunday, November 04, 2007

Round the Ikea in less than 80 days

We went to Brother in Law's for the weekend. The main object of the visit was for Barney to chop down some of a tree. All his family turn to him when they need any heavy duty gardening or roof repair doing and we turn up with chainsaw and assorted implements of destruction.
Here are the brothers Bardsley, working harmoniously together.*
On this occasion we got magnificently fed...I don't think I will need to eat again for several days. What's more they have an Ikea on their doorstep. So me and sister in law made an excursion from which, thankfully, we emerged**. After watching the football, the brothers Bardsley chopped and hauled and managed to reduce the tree somewhat without totally destroying it. Later the boys went to the pub and Sister in Law and I drank a bottle of wine before we all ate the most enormous pork chops I have ever seen. Later still I thought, maybe I will have a hangover tomorrow! Oh well. This shot of suburbia was taken under the influence of huge food and much drink.
Then today there was an enormous chicken, marvellously stuffed. (but absolutely no wine for me thank you very much). And the niece and nephew were around over the weekend, both being pleasant and charming and entertaining as usual. They are a delightful pair and I prophesy broken hearts in both their wakes in the years to come. If not already!
Barney and I made a second excursion to Ikea to investigate desks. I've sold him on the room usage thing and he got quite excited about the prospect of going home with a new desk and a room just for stamps! Sadly, after an hour waiting for Ikea to open properly (funny Sunday opening hours they have) so the hordes would be allowed into the warehouse area, we found that the chosen desk was out of stock! Barney was sad. And eloquent upon the shortcomings of Ikea and all its awfulness. Couldn't really disagree but anyway I still have to go and get myself a sewing table and a card making desk. All will be well :)
Mind, I've no idea how all this is going to be paid for! Better examine all my bank statements carefully so I can do a bit of sleight of hand on them. After all Christmas is coming and I will need to spend money on it however much I might wish it would just disappear!
So back home and time to fetch the dog from kennels on a misty early morning :)

*A scene I often see in various forms - Barney up a tree wielding an implement of destruction and a member of the family standing helpfully at the bottom
**I really do wonder sometimes if there are people in Ikea who never managed to find the way out, haunting the bed department and wandering sadly and hungrily around the sterile kitchen bit. As all Ikeas are identical, I guess they might skip through to some other universe and find themselves in a different Ikea in some other time and place. This could account for huge numbers of missing persons...now displaced.

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Friday, November 02, 2007

Autumn spring clean?

No? Halloween clean then.
I'm going to clear out the dead chilli leaves from the kitchen window and wash the floor.
So there!
I've had a very good few days taking pictures and I'm very grateful for the sun having shone so nicely. Now it's a grey day and time to pay.
Also a good day to break a few habits. (I do break them once in a while, just to make sure I'm not turning into a picture zombie)
Well I did that and finally after months and months of subconscious exasperation and resistance, I also tidied the music room. That's a relief!

Barney doesn't know it yet but there are changes afoot here.
Between us we have three hobbies or activities which require large amounts of table space. There's stamp collecting (Oh, did you think that just needed space for an album and a few stamps now and then? Ha! think six to ten enormous albums and a dozen or so large envelopes full of stamps and several catalogues, all spread out for instant reference), there's card making and there's sewing. All theses things would be much easier to deal with if they had a space ready for instant use, perhaps even with the latest efforts laid nicely out.

We have one largeish table. Doubles up as the dining table and the place where mail and newspapers and heaps of unsorted stuff get put.
We also have three spare bedrooms now that we have no children at home.
See, there's a beautiful symmetry developing here.

Also, I need an Ikea trip. It's been long enough that I've forgotten what a horrible experience Ikea shopping is and can only remember the pleasure of bringing home lovely bright new things to play with. Oh yes!
Oh and before New Year, I want to have nice quilts and pillows on all the beds - I'm fed up with the ancient and lumpy and grubby ones hiding inside nice covers.

Really, it's just a question of choosing rooms and a trip to Ikea. I'm going to do a bit of virtual window shopping now :) that's three tables (or desks), one set of shelves and some soft, floppy, warm duvets and some nice firm pillows.
Oh and a Poang chair. Didn't I mention that? I've lusted after a Poang chair for a very long time. Ever since Eldest first introduced me to Ikea and my feet and back were hurting and I sat in one. Only there's no room anywhere for another armchair. But when one of us colonises the littlest room, upstairs, its bed will have to be replaced by a futon. The one in the music room in fact. Aha.
Oh I am so looking forward to this :)

And since I've tidied the music room and had a fiddle lesson tonight, I practiced. I even did studies.
Now me and my fiddle are tired.
So it's lights out and time for bed:)
I shan't be back till Sunday or Monday as we've visiting to do, but I hope you all have a really really nice weekend.