one step at a time.

Monday, June 30, 2008

So far this birthday sucks.

We hung around this morning because my boyfriend thought we should wait for the postman. However I have had messages from my brother, sister, boyfriends sister and my mother (who has stuff from an aunt) ALL of whom haven't actually posted anything yet. The postman hasn't been and it's 12.30. I gave up and went to the bank. Wish now that I hadn't.

I went to withdraw camp money from the brownie account, only to discover that the form the bank in the city centre gave me last week is not sufficient unless the signatory is present with ID. Which they won't be as they are now in France on Guide camp. I have signed completed forms to add me as a signatory, but the bank now tell me this takes 2 weeks. Not something they chose to mention two weeks ago when I asked about it!

I leave for Brownie camp on Friday. Without the money?? I need to fix this one fast!

Update: I did get mail from my parents..... to clear up any confusion. It arrived after I posted this - they did not forget.

Sunday, June 29, 2008


I forgot to photograph the cake til this morning. And the super-tasty one I made later has gone. But the very tasty one that my boyfriend made is left and I've photographed that for you instead.

Mine was a vanilla victoria sponge with vanilla creamy icing filling and chocolate fudge icing all round the top and sides, decorated with white chocolate chips and chocolate vermicelli. Mmmmm.

I tried to get my pals to vote on which cake they preferred but they just refused to say that mine was better. I'm taking this verdict from the 'pie chart test'. (approximation of cake quantities eaten half-way through party). Cake 1 is mine.

We had fun. I am feeling really full... and thirsty (can't think why I'd have that symptom this morning!).

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Today - Party! (birthday not actually til monday)

I got some cards today - woo hoo! (exciting) Thank you if you are reading.

So far we have:

Baked cake
Washed up
Cleaned up
Mowed lawn
Strimmed weedy bit
Been to supermarket
Been to DIY store (for replacement gazebo, as it is very likely we'll get rain although it's holding off just now)
Played some Super Mario Galaxy
Listened to the radio
Decorated cake

It's now 1pm. 2 hours til kick off. I might just clear the washing up if it's dried and then pour myself a glass of wine.

Then I'll decorate the other cake - we burnt the first one so I made a replacement - and post you some pictures x

Friday, June 27, 2008

Tomorrow - Birthday Barbie

Since I first lived in a flat with a garden (3rd year in uni) I have had a bbq party for my birthday. This year the weather has been great until this weekend.

So I'm expecting this: (just got the pic from photobucket. It isn't me!)

Monday, June 23, 2008


I have begun construction of Phone Socks.

My boyfriend recently got a new phone. I mentioned previously on my blog that I was planning to make him a cover for it as it has an enormous screen and he'll scratch it all up at work carrying it round.

So I invented (not claiming it's an original idea... just that I didn't steal it from anyone) the Phone Sock.

This is the prototype. As such I have offered to make my boyfriend a new and improved version but he is resisting. He is a bit sentimental.

This is the first commission. Allan (a colleague) requested the colour scheme. The rest of the design, including a home made button added after the photo, are my creation. I am quite proud of this one.

And the third (and the one I resent making a bit as I hate Celtic and Rangers) - a blue, white and red cover. This is a work in progress. I expect to have it finished today providing I stop reading your blogs for a while. (FINISHED!!)

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Pupil Progress

Yesterday I spent the morning tidying my house. Seriously - cleaning properly - because I'd invited my private pupils to play a concert for their parents.

There were three who were up for it, so they each prepared a piece. I moved the piano into the frong room and set up chairs.

They performed really well! And the concert lasted about 20 minutes which is impressive if you conisider they're all beginners and each piece was around 1 min max long.

Anyway - they seemed to enjoy themselves and the parents looked very proud so I think it was worth the effort.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Road Rage

road rage

I had a minor incident this week with road rage. A brush with an angry taxi driver.

I was driving along in the right hand lane (the fast lane) after traffic lights accelerating away.

A taxi in the left lane indicated out, but I was already passing it so I assumed he'd wait til I'd passed and pull in behind me. Instead he tried to force his way out.

As I already have a dent in the passenger side of the car (after a pensioner with one arm and one leg crashed into me) I decided to ignore him, so he had to pull sharply back into his lane to avoid running into the side of my car.

He beeped his horn a lot and flashed his lights at me.

So I stuck my middle finger up in the rear window as I drove away.

However I was stopped soon after at red lights, and he pulled in behind me. He honked his horn angrily over and over and over again. I refused to turn round and he just kept beeping. I kept a keen ear out for the sound of a car door, as I was half expecting him to jump out to have a go. I had my hand on the locks just in case!

As we pulled away at the lights he was turning right and passed me. As he did so he gestured the knob sign through his window. As if I were the w_nker!

Do you think if I'd refrained from swearing at him he'd have been as mad?

Wednesday, June 18, 2008


Today I have FINISHED THE ACCOUNTS! I am so happy!

So now onto the next issue.

Student Loans

The year I went to Uni (or music college if you're picky) the government introduced tuition fees, scrapped Grants and sank the entire UK uni population into debt.

They brought in Student Loans. I took 4 (I know - greedy... had a FANTASTIC time at college though, and was there for 5 years). You do not have to pay back the loan until you earn over a certain amount - around £18k. The expectation at the time was that this would be a usual salary for a graduate. What this did not account for was the government push to get all kids into Uni which resulted in degrees here being a pound a penny, and salaries not reflecting the years of study. There are now many people under this threshold.

I am still, 5/6 years after graduation, eligible to defer repayment of my loan. (I am accumulating interest though). HOWEVER the administration of the system is shoddy at best and each year deferment comes with an inordinate amount of stress.

Last year the company claimed non-receipt of my stuff only to return it addressed to my boyfriend. I resubmitted it and they deferred my loan.

This year I handed the forms in personally. They have claimed non-receipt and I am currently showing as in arrears. So this morning I've kicked up a fuss and hopefully they'll dig out the forms.

In case they don't - I've been in touch with the tax office who are sending me a replacement tax calculation which I need as back-up to prove my income but don't have any more as I handed it in IN PERSON to the offices of the Student Loans Co. Grr.

Anyway back to happy stuff.. the accounts are done!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Tuesday, June 17, 2008


I'm still knitting. Currently it's a mobile phone holder but that wont' take long.

One day soon I hope to get going properly on a baby jumper. It'd be easier if I knew someone who was pregnant I could make it for but I'm going to try anyway.

Tomorrow is a day off. I am trying for the moment to take on a bit less work. As school finishes for summer I start to fret that we'll be in trouble financially. In the holidays I don't get paid for teaching - so usually I try to take on as much overtime in my office job as possible. This week I haven't done that - and although I will be back in the office if possible from next week, the prospect of a day off is making me feel good!

Monday, June 16, 2008

Sacked it!

Well on the advice of Mr V Bond (who pointed out taking a break's important) I took a break. The accounts are still not done.. but they're REALLY NEARLY THERE and I'll deliver them tomorrow morning.

Yesterday afternoon as my boyfriend and I had an afternoon followed by a morning off we went away with the tent. It was beautiful - and we relaxed! We spent the night in a pretty mountain area within 10 mins drive of the seaside. There was a restaurant by the sea where I had the days catch of mackerel for tea and boyf had a salmon fishcake salad thing. We just headed back to the tent after that but found there were too many midges to sit outside. Instead we played cards in the tent and had an early night.

So now I feel much more able to face my responsibilities - back on track.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Sodding Accounts

Because I am shit at this... and because I haven't got time to chase everything up.... This year by failing to get the census money in effectively we have spent all the money that was in the bank last year on this year's census.

So we're left with what we made this year....... and that has to go on camp unless I ask the leaders to pay (one's a student and the other's me. Both are skint). I am a little concerned.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008


I think the problem is that I have the Brownie accounts still hanging over me. Today I am meant to go into work - but I really want a day off.... maybe I'll go in and say I have to leave at lunchtime. That way I can get the accounts out of the way and that will be a big weight off my mind.

Monday, June 09, 2008


think I'm losing the blogging bug!

Somehow this place is not a priority... or near the top of the list at the moment. It's sunk down the rankings due to a pile of things that need to be done, and the purchase of a Nintendo Wii.

I'll visit.

Tuesday, June 03, 2008


Last week at Brownies all bar 2 of the kids forgot their permission slip for the swimming this week. So I wasn't sure how many would come. I guessed a maximum of 9 which was fine as we had two leaders.

As they arrived I took a note of their swimming ability (ie beginner or intermediate).

This meant I could pair them up.

I had the guides set up so one took the swimmers, and the other minded the non-swimmers (beginners).

They got to go in the wave pool. It's brilliant! As soon as I arrived I wished I could go in too. Every half hour the waves go on, at which point a buzzer sounds. The beginners stayed in the really shallow end and the others about half-way down. The waves were pretty big and they loved it.

Actually I think the waves saved me from a lot of whinging as I wasn't letting the kids down the big flume slide thing.

They all seemed pretty happy at the end, and one of the girls had a birthday so brought chocolate cake.

We only had one play up and she arrived late so missed the 'chat' at the start (where I told them that if they misbehaved it'd be the first, and last trip the Brownies do to the swimming pool).

And now I'm thinking 'phew - thank god that went ok!'. Also 'Bollocks - I have to practise and I'm tired!'.

I might have a sneaky blog-read session instead for a bit. It is 20 past 10pm after all (my neighbours are away so I can play the trumpet all I like).

Brownies Swimming Trip

Tonight is our last Brownie meeting of the term.

The girls get to choose an end of year outing - and this year there was no getting out of it: They ALL wanted to go swimming.

As I only have me and an assistant guider as grown-ups in the group, I have enlisted the help of a couple of Guides. The Guides are fab - one used to be a Brownie in my pack. The other was probably a Brownie there before I started, although I'm not sure.

So they've been allocated swimmers to mind and the girls are paired into swimming abilities with a Buddy. I've checked out the manual and the rules are straightforward.

I also plan to give them a ball and to keep them in the wave pool anyway so that'll minimise stress for AG and me! By the time they've got changed and ready for swimming there won't be TOO long in the pool if they want juice and a biscuit afterwards.

The thing that makes me a little nervous is that the pool isn't one I know - and I haven't been able to get to check it out first as I've had a LOAD of work commitments. I didn't do my gig last Wednesday so I could be at the 'Rainbows going up to Brownies' party, so couldn't really afford to miss any more!

I'll get there early tonight. I have phoned them already but will phone them again this morning just to remind them we're coming.

Please keep your fingers crossed for us!!

Monday, June 02, 2008


Until this evening I haven't been able to view any blogger blogs unless it's through the google reader thing.

If I clicked on the links it just froze. I couldn't see my dashboard to get comments either but it's really nice to see that you've been to visit anyway!

I'll try to get round to read up properly later on tonight as I am looking forward to hearing what's been going on.

Sunday, June 01, 2008

Blogger problems

I've been working a LOT this week (9am-11pm, 7.30am-11pm, 9am-9pm etc) so haven't been up for posting but I have also not been able to get on my blog anyway.


Anyone else having Blogger problems?