one step at a time.

Friday, August 29, 2008

Judge Me

How bad is this?

To set the scene: We have one car between us. I have the car on Saturday as I teach in an awkward place for public transport. My boyfriend doesn't work in a great place for public transport either really but he has the car every other day of the week.

TC "Do you really need a lift home from work on Saturday?"
Boy "Um... well I could get the train."
TC "Would that be ok?" *batting eyelashes giving a winning smile*
Boy "Yes, I'll get someone to drop me at the train station. How come?"
TC "Well Jenny is coming round for dinner."

My real reason for asking? I want to watch the final of Last Choir Standing on tv.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Dodgy geezer

Last night I had fish and chips before going out.

At the chippy a man came in asking for a carrier bag because his plastic bag had split outside just up the road. He was not a chip shop customer.

The owner of the shop told him that there was a 5p charge for a plastic bag. The guy thought for a second then left.

The owner then told us dodgy guys come into the chippy quite often asking for a carrier bag that they can use to hide the item they've just stolen from a car up the road.

The dodgy guy came back into the shop and this time I noticed he had a big square/rectangular object hidden underneath his jumper. He asked to see the plastic bag. The shopkeeper showed him but he didn't buy it and left for good this time.

I want to know what you could nick from a car that's about the size of a box of tissues (maybe slightly bigger)?

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Tuesday, August 26, 2008


I like my routine of the last two weeks....

I sit around getting up slowly, making tea, playing the computer, practising a bit, playing the piano........ then I teach a bit...... then I can go back to the earlier stuff before bed.

However I know it's not good. I am - as of tomorrow - going to make an effort to sort out my room to make myself get back into hard work again. I had a crazy few weeks and reacted by just flopping for a few days. Time to stop that.

Monday, August 25, 2008


I am just realising that my Brownie pack starts back next week.

A week or two ago a nice Guider from Ireland gave me a newsletter she uses... which I edited for my pack (deleted the name of her and her unit and replaced it with my unit and my name).

I thought last night that I ought post it. So I printed 20 copies, and took the envelopes, addresses and letters to the pub to put it together somewhere with beer. HOWEVER on the bus there I spotted an error...

Can you spot it? In the first big heading (the layout's gone a bit nuts when I've changed it into a JPEG) - "SEPTMEBER".

As this will be the first thing I send to my new Brownies I decided to print them out again. I ripped up the misspelt copies. I printed page 1, then stuck all the paper in to print page 2.

The stupid ink ran out on the reverse of ALL the copies.

So that's 40 copies ruined. On the up-side, I spotted another mistake (it instead of is) which I can now fix too.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Cool Brass Music

Their website.

I had to do a gig once walking in singing a song in parts. We were.. umm... not as good as this. Nuff said!

Friday, August 22, 2008

Back to teaching

Tomorrow I have the staff meeting child protection training etc etc day for my Saturday teaching.

I can't remember what time it is meant to be at.


My friend texted at half 3 this morning to tel me it's at 9.30. She'll be feeling good for it!!

On the one hand......

I like to watch the sports I enjoy most at Olympic level.

On the OTHER hand it is annoying me that I'm having to watch GMTV (dodgy breakfast tv news and gossip show) if I've been up late as BBC in the morning show the sports I've already seen.

Perhaps blaming the Olympics isn't fair. Perhaps I should pinpoint the real culprit for unwatchable telly:

Big Brother. It is terrible!!!!!!!!

Usually if I don't want to watch BBC Breakfast (good breakfast tv news show) I can always watch some old Frasier re-runs, but when Big Brother is on the channel (Channel 4) seems to show it at all hours and the channel is a no-go. The last two series's of the show have bombed though I think so hopefully they'll give up after this one.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Thursday Thirteen #30

Thursday Thirteen
13 Things I have to do today:
  1. Take the first wash from last night out to dry
  2. Put on a wash
  3. Go to work in my office job
  4. Buy shoes
  5. Meet a friend
  6. Put on a wash
  7. Put clothes out to dry
  8. Put on a wash
  9. Put clothes out to dry
  10. Put on a wash
  11. Put clothes out to dry
  12. PUT ON A WASH!
  13. Go to bed.
To explain - we got our new washing machine after a week without one. Bear in mind that I broke the washing machine when it was definitely due a couple of cycles already.
It promises to be a barrel of fun today.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Tea Cozy revisited

I love tea. Particularly real tea in a teapot made with tealeaves.

My friend has just discovered real fresh proper tea too.

I am making him a tea cozy. He's making tea at the moment in a cafetiere so I'll get him a cheap teapot too. I'm halfway through - will post you another picture when I'm finished. *done - see top! Apologies for the mobile phone camera snaps*

The Pattern

Monday, August 18, 2008

Reviving 1980's hair accessories

Why do female gymnasts still wear scrunchies in their hair.

I understand wanting to keep the hair back - that just makes sense. However the sparkles, gel and SCRUNCHIES in particular bemuse me.

Having said this - I am completely in awe of their skills and love watching this sport.

Sunday, August 17, 2008


I have bought a washing machine from Argos coz they can deliver at a more convenient time than John Lewis.

Now I'm thinking of having a catch-up daytime snooze, as I can't put a wash on (shame!).


After a really long day - Edinburgh gig then Glasgow gig with a pipe band championship in the middle (selling programmes for Guides) - I'm done. And can now RELAX.

Friday, August 15, 2008

I am so tired!

It's been a busy period. But tomorrow marks the end - and I am excited at the prospect of a whole day off.

Hope you have a fine weekend too.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008


We've been to the science centre today. It's a very cool place but it was the busiest I've seen and the queue to get in was enormous. This affected MY enjoyment of it but not the five year old boy's or my boyfriend's.

We then came home and played bubble blowing. FYI - a trumpet is not the most effective method of bubble blowing, but when it works the bubbles are mightily impressive.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

AAAAAAAAAAAAGH my stupid washing machine has broken on the day I have guests coming to stay.

When we bought a flat, like many first time buyers, we had no 'stuff'. We moved in with a side table, a black wooden chair and a computer table and computer.

We bought the basics to get going - a bed, some drawers, a sofa (really cheap - really rubbish). Then a friend offered a deal on a washing machine, tumble dryer and fridge freezer which were in her great Aunt's house. Her aunt was going into a home so we bought the items from her at a bargain price, for which we were VERY grateful!

However the fridge freezer and tumble dryer have since been replaced. It was gutting to have to throw them away but we couldn't find anybody to take the tumble dryer (which worked) and the fridge was finished.

Finally this is the washing machine giving up the ghost. It must be pretty old. It's a Hoover Classica Autowasher 1000- can't find a date using the magic of the internet.

RIP washing machine.

Monday, August 11, 2008

More weirdness

Hit play before you read - this takes a minute to get going.

The other day I turned the radio on (BBC Radio 2 - thought it might have been Jonathan Ross) and this what was playing.

"Bow, Bow Bow.... Bow, Bow Bow...."

NO WAY - it can't be?

I thought I was going mad for a minute. But it was really there - The Frog Chorus was genuinely coming from my car stereo!

It is much longer than I remembered. Alan Titchmarsh played it on his show. I had to turn over straight after this because the next thing was a Mozart piano piece (yawn). Later I tried again to find it a pop song played on Euphonium. Nope - not for me.

Anyway - Hope you enjoy the video... or enjoy the reminder of 198_ .

Saturday, August 09, 2008

Friday, August 08, 2008


Sh!t - there's a war. Again. Now it's Georgia and Russia. And I was moaning about my stomach. Sh!t.

Cure for a dodgy tum

3 hours trumpet playing

Hopefully once cured it'll be fine then to have a drink or two.

Don't worry - I'll have a day off on Monday.

Recipe for continued dodginess

2 cans lager
2 pints cider
4 pints lager
1 bottle of vino verde
1 pizza
1 chinese buffet
1 packet cheese and onion crisps
steak and mushroom dinner (tasty)
16 more hours trumpet playing

Recipe for a dodgy tum

1 Chocolate Brownie
2.5 pints of lager
7 hours trumpet playing.

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Mimi's Tag - The 'needs' meme

As I understand it the meme rules are simple: Google 'your first name' and 'needs' as a search.

I have an unusual real name. And a blog name that isn't a name. So my results on this meme weren't great. My real name just brought up articles or websites really about me, so I'm going with Top.

Top needs a bottom for daytime sex. There were two or three like this... Top needs a young boy.... Top needs a slutty bottom... and so on.

Top needs refinishing.

Top needs the time.

Anyway I must go as I have lots of work to do. As the meme says 'Top needs the time'. I have a pupil due this morning any time now and rehearsals after that all day.

See Mimi's for the meme proper.

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Teachers. Bah.

OK so I teach quite a lot myself.

Maybe more accurately the title of my post should be: Musicians. Bah.

I don't know.

What I do know is that it annoys me when musicians dump a gig for a better paid one. I understand it. I have done it.... although never without finding a suitable replacement for myself - sometimes paying them more than the gig would have paid me because I'm earning more anyway.

It also irritates me when people who are music teachers as well as performers assume that everyone else is having a huge long restful holiday when in fact some of us have taken work to fill the gaps teaching left.

And I want to do a rehearsal at eleven o'clock tomorrow morning because I have another rehearsal in another city at half past six that night. However a colleague can't be bothered to get there in time for that so is making us have the rehearsal later. Which annoys me because I know that he's not doing anything at 11am. He just has to travel for an hour and a half so would need to leave at half past nine - which is obviously too early in school holidays.

Now that's off my chest I feel a lot better!

Monday, August 04, 2008

Manic Monday - Big

Mo's Manic Monday (- click to link to Mo's blog)

This is my very BIG cat Dixie. He's a real cuddle-monster.

If I continue to eat all the left-over cake I have from this weekend I will be very BIG indeed!

Friday, August 01, 2008

The Topchamp Bakery is now Open

I have just spent a couple of hours baking cakes. I made a vanilla 6oz sponge using golden caster sugar - just tasted a crumb and it is REALLY tasty. I have just wrecked it though by cutting it in half to ice the middle, but not paying proper attention and cutting it wonky. I may well have to start that one again.

I have also begun baking a chocolate sponge. This one's in the oven. It smells nice!

I will let you know how this one turns out.

The last cake I have to make is a toffee sponge - I've nicked a recipe off the web so will paste the link here.