Category Archives: House


I make things.  It’s what I do.

I’ve been chewing stuff over in my head a lot over the past few weeks – I’ve been super busy but work doesn’t occupy my brain fully, so there’s always a corner which continues to whirr away whilst the rest of me freewheels through accounts and taking orders and dealing with the day-to-day minutiae of running a business.

Part of the reason I’ve been so off kilter is because the only thing I’ve been making recently is a bloody mess.  My house looks like a typhoon just went through it, and not the interesting jet-powered sort either.  But I’ve not written or done any of the other things I do when I need to make.

Today, I had to wait around in the house for some chap to come and fix my washing machine which had chewed up and then regurgitated the solid concrete block that’s used as a counterbalance for the spin cycle.  Gritty grey dust everywhere.  I couldn’t focus enough to write, but I did cook.  I made two batches of soup – curried parsnip and a general vegetable to use up some of the veg that the local gamekeeper drops off for us every other week – and mince pies and a pumpkin pie, and I roasted a half shoulder of lamb for dinner.  My kitchen smells FABULOUS.  It sounds so simple, but the last few weeks have been so batshit crazy that I’ve not really cooked anything properly since I made Christmas puddings the day after we came back from Holland.

It felt really good.

So now I’m sat here with a ball of yarn and I’m working on a blanket which I’ve been meaning to make forever.  I’ve had the dozen bright balls of rainbow coloured softness in a bag for a while, and it’s incredibly soothing to have something to do with my hands whilst I read.  I open something on my laptop/iPad/Kindle and I can sit and read and knit/crochet, occupying both hands and brain and I feel like I’m not wasting my time by sitting idle.  Currently I’m reading through Windmills – I used the opening chapter in the symposium and it went a lot better than I thought.  Maybe I should have stuck around for a little more peer feedback, but I just wanted to hide in the corner and cough some more.  One day I might stop being such an introvert.

So yeah, I’m making stuff.  Who knows, maybe I’ll even make sense if I work at it hard enough.


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Filed under House, Rambles, Writing


Lost my password.  Actually, no, that’s not quite accurate.  More along the lines of changed computers, didn’t write down all the passwords required and forgot my user name for WordPress.

No, I’m not the sharpest tool in the shed right now.  Doesn’t help that this new laptop has lost a shift key, which is hugely irritating and it WILL be going back to PCurryWorld to have that put right.

Not even going to begin to catch up with everything that’s been happening lately, as I think it’s all water best left under the bridge.  Let’s just say I feel completely cheated by Christmas and I have to get a better work/life/writing type balace before I go off my rocker completely.

Getting burgled just before Christmas didn’t help either – I have a list as long as my arm of stuff to do in order to get that sorted, as well as finish the last of the paperwork from when we sold the other house at the start of December.  One day, I too will catch up with all this sodding paperwork!

Now for more NCIS – I’ve developed a fondness for Gibbs, it appears.  Silver haired blue eyed Marine, anyone?

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Happy New Year :)

Yay for January!  All the fuss and brouhaha is over, the last of the chocolate and turkey has been consumed and/or otherwise disposed of and everything calms down somewhat.  It’s more than a relief this year, that’s for sure.

My health is crappy right now, which is getting me down but I’m going to do my normal and ignore it and just get on with it.  Could do with not always feeling so tired, that’s for sure.  And my hips ache like nothing else.  Ho hum, welcome to nearly 40… LOL   It could be worse, so I’m not going to dwell on it.  It just means I’m spending more time in the house instead of tearing around the place running errands and burning obscene amounts of diesel.  Not being sociable either, but that’ll no doubt change once I feel a little better.  It’s quite nice to have some peace and quiet after the last six months of total insanity.  I may even pick up a book…

Am back knitting, which is always good.  My garden is coming on apace.  Probably should mention we moved in on 1st December, so it’s back to living out of boxes.  I’m used to that though, so it’s no hardship.  Best thing is though, when I empty one, I don’t have to keep it ready for the next move.  The kids have taken a great big stack of boxes up to the common room and made a huge den out of them, and I don’t care – they can trash them completely as far as I’m concerned.  Whatever’s left will be summarily torched when there’s enough to make a decent bonfire.

This is one of those posts where I ramble on for a while, say a great deal about not a lot, then wander off again.

Oh, resolutions?  I guess I should make a few, if only to be able to look back in a few months and laugh at myself and my unfounded optimism.

1. Lose that extra stone that’s probably adding to my hip/back troubles.

2. Stock check last few boxes of old stock and list on eBay/Ravelry.

3. Go back to menu planning and try to save some money.

Actually, I’m going to leave those there.  They aren’t wildly unrealistic – I’ve not mentioned the boxes full of books that need sorting and selling and freecycling etc – so we’ll see what happens.  🙂

I shall simply wish you all blwyddyn newydd dda.

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Wish list!

I have to face facts as there’s no escaping them.  It’s the middle of November, J’s birthday is at the weekend, I’m more than halfway through my Nano and there’s a nip in the air.  Ergo, the season of goodwill is upon us.

That and there have been Christmas foodstuffs in the local Co-op since the end of August.

My children have started writing wish lists, normally based on whatever they’ve seen during the most recent advert break and Tea (DD2) is planning her birthday party for the second week of December.  It primarily involves most of her class coming to our new house and therefore entails said house being completed on time.

*crosses fingers*

There have also been several discussions on adult wishlists, and I decided that I should make an effort to give my nearest and dearest some kind of idea of the things I’d like for Christmas.  So, in no particular order:

Fabric.  I’ve been playing with  my sewing machine a bit more lately and will be spending a great deal more time at it over the next couple of weeks as I finish off curtains and such for the house.  I want to get into making clothes and I have a fabulous dress pattern to do.  I also have a green quilt which I need to finish off, so what I’d really like are cotton fabrics with beautiful pattersn, fabrics in predominately red or green and any interesting little scraps of odds and sods that I can piece together or use with the kids.

Books.  See Amazon wishlist here.  🙂

Stuff for new kitchen.  At another wishlist, right here.

Apart from that, there’s very little I need.  I’d like a new laptop, but this one works fine, even if you have to be able to touchtype to use it as most of the letters have rubbed off.  Three Nanowrimos will do that to a lappy.  I’d like a diamond.  Don’t mind if it’s in a ring or a necklace, I’m not that fussy.

I love handmade things too.  Make me a cotton bag and you make me very happy.  Especially if it’s a smallish one that I can carry a knitting project around in.  I have two which are about 12″ square and they’re brilliant.  Larger ones are also fab for keeping yarn in, hanging off virtually every door handle in the house.  I like handmade dishcloths and houseplants and recipes for tasty things.

Cookbooks!  I love cookbooks and favourite recipes.  And old ones especially. World War Two stuff, home front and dig for victory and 1940’s knitting patterns.

Okay, will stop there because anyone who actually knows me will be rolling their eyes and going, ‘okay, okay we know all this’.

I’m easy to please.  If you put a little thought into it, instead of buying a Boots 3-for-2 box of smellies, I’ll be more than happy.  🙂



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Day out.

Today I had an extra child, DD3’s school friend, so I decided to do something a little out of the ordinary. We went to the big soft play centre in town, and then, oh-shock-horror, we went to the golden arches and I fed all five children junk food from little cardboard boxes. My kids were ecstatic. They got to ricocchet around this huge warehouse filled with dozens of other screaming kids, climbing dayglo padded monkey bars and leaping around with complete abandon. I don’t think I even once said ‘shush’ to any of them. They guzzled two big jugs of tap water and two jugs of squash (full of sweeteners, bleargh) and did low-level laps of the walls afterwards.

Once they began the ‘we’re starving we want pizza/toasties/chips/whatever the kid on the next table has’, I gave them all a ten minute warning. A short while later, they all put their shoes on without complaint and piled into the truck ready for lunch. The restaurant was packed but we found a table. (what, five kids and you want me to drive through? Nuh-uh) And bless them if they didn’t sit and eat beautifully, even the extra child who is an only child and thus sometimes has trouble adjusting to being one amongst many. Not a french fry was left, they tidied away all their garbage and we headed out brandishing our small, stuffed Smurfs.By all accounts, a very successful day.

Not a cheap one, though, but I think half the reason they enjoyed it so much was that it doesn’t happen very often. That’s the first McD’s we’ve had all holiday, if you don’t count the breakfast we had in the one in Bridlington at the start of the summer break. They bounced off the walls for about an hour once home, but now they’re all splat in front of Scooby Doo, eating their way through my fruit bowl. The house smells of oranges and it’s lovely.

And speaking of houses (yeah, tenuous link, I know), I got the final kitchen quote in today. We’ve had several, because I’m a touch anal like that from time to time, and the range is quite staggering. From a little under £4000 for an Ikea kitchen with appliances (2 single ovens, a 5 burner hob and a dishwasher – I have my big fridge already), to £5800 no appliances from an independent, £8000 from Magnet (with), £10,200 (with) from a very posh independent and the last one came in today at £11,800 (with) from a local family business. That last one is now working on a hopefully-substantial discount, as we’ve bought the two bathroom suites, all the bricks, blocks and plumbing materials from them and that kitchen price wasn’t done at the trade counter prices that we’ve been paying. Fingers crossed because it’s an amazing kitchen and I think I’d really like that one. Well of course I would, it’s the most expensive… *sigh*

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Boxes and things

Initially this was set up as writing blog, somewhere meant to be wordy and worthy and full of musings and plot bunnies.  Real life doesn’t work like that though, and I have a feeling I’ll be dropping all manner of stuff in here.

Like the fact my two eldest children (DD1 -12yo and DD2 – 9yo) are currently messing around on the piano and so far, I’ve heard snatches of the Harry Potter theme, a couple of grade one pieces and now, they’re figuring out how to play ‘Do(e) a deer’ from the Sound of Music together.  Very sweet, but it does get slightly repetitive after a while!

DD3 (8yo) is trailing around with her toy rabbit under one arm looking like she’s been dragged through a hedge backwards.  If I so much as mention the word ‘hairbrush’ however, she will vanish into the woodwork, like some ethereal woodland sprite.  DS, the four year old toad in human form, is somewhere glued to a screen.  Or the puppy.  Did I mention the puppy?  I guess one bonus is that the dog is now pretty much housetrained, which was a lot less painful than I was expecting.

On the house front, we now have a roof on the dining room and a floor to the bedrooms, and we’re halfway up the bedroom walls.  Yesterday I ordered some wallpaper for DD1’s bedroom.  Isn’t it pretty?  camo wallpaper

Yes, seriously, she wants camo wallpaper.  So, I’ve bought 3 rolls which should do the long wall in her room, and told her she can have the other three walls painted a pale sage.  Which, funnily, is the same colour as the kitchen is probably going to be 🙂

I do, however, still have three more children who want to choose their own wallpaper, the master bedroom, the ‘common room’ and the little dressing room (aka the box room) to decorate.  We’ve chosen plain white for the bathrooms, white suites, white tiles, and the bits that can’t be white are stainless steel/chrome.   The living room is going to be shades of red and saffron, to go with a painting we bought months ago.  The ‘music room’, which is basically my tv free little front room that’s going to be stuffed full of bookshelves and the piano, is neutral with splashes of dark red and bitter chocolate.  The kitchen will have white cupboards, a wooden counter and light sage walls.  But as for hall/stairs/landing, the other bedrooms, the dining room and study – I haven’t got a clue.  The concept of having a whole house to decorate how you want it is a great one, clean slate and all that.  However, in practice, it’s more than a little daunting.  There are only so many books of wallpaper you can go through before industrial sized tubs of magnolia start to look really appealing.

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Filed under Animals, House, Kids

Nice and clean.

The lurcher puppy Sprocket

So I think I’m going to have to figure out exactly how to manage this blog part.  I’m guessing WordPress is the thing to use, but that means learning something else. Not that I’m adverse to learning new stuff, but with two books to edit, a handful of plot bunnies eating my brain, an OU course just finishing (and two more in the wings waiting to start!), four children, a house build and a new puppy to wrangle, it may be a wee while before I finally get something bloglike up and running here.  So do forgive me, and have a picture of something cute and something chaotic to tide you over. Kris x


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Filed under Animals, House