29 February, 2008

A Completely Frivolous Post

In honor of Leap Day, when I don't "have to" post a thing, I will reveal that I am a shallow and covetous person.

Today at the spouses' get-together, someone was carrying a Reisenthel market bag. I don't think any of us had seen one before, and it got LOTS of attention, not all from me. They are about the size of a supermarket shopping basket, and absolutely groovy gorgeous. Just my opinion. Suzie's bag was tan with neat black or brown scrollwork patterns.

Tonight, browsing on line, I found this one. My dream market basket. I am absolutely convinced that if I owned it, my hair would be bouncier, my jeans would be chic-er, and I would look effortlessly pulled together as well as environmentally conscious. Also 15 pounds lighter.

Did I mention that I would also finish all my knitting projects, return my library books on time, and bake my own bread? And learn Russian in my spare time? And sing beautifully?

OK. So I am dreaming a little bit. Truly, though, it's a nifty basket.

28 February, 2008

Hi, y'all.

I got email from blog365 today, reminding me NOT to blog tomorrow. Leap Day is our day of rest. Maybe I'll be saucy and blog anyway.

Traffic court went well - I got my fine and my 3 points, apologized, and moved on. To the tea room in the village. Where I had a pot of tea and a massive slab of very good chocolate cake.

And then I felt much better.

I also scored two nice pairs of blue jeans in the charity shops, which is a little bonus. Last year's Monsoon sale jeans, which have been my go-to dressier jeans, have developed visible holes and it's time to retire them to gardening pants.

I'm being all permissive and letting the kids stay up late to watch one of the Best of Loony Tunes DVDs while I catch up on my blog reading.

Still no knitting around here, but I'm thinking about knitting. Does that count at all?

27 February, 2008

So. Tired.

It's 8:30 and I am shattered. This is just crazy. Part of it is dread, though...I have my day in court tomorrow, to pay my traffic citation and repent.

Part of it is mental exhaustion and a brain whirling like a hamster on amphetamines. David's car flunked its MOT (annual inspection) rather spectacularly, so our friend/mechanic will be looking out for a new (to us) diesel car for him.

I gave smaller David a hug tonight, remembered when he was a baby, and just burst into tears. Very odd.

And we had an earthquake last night. The world - it is a strange place for me today.

26 February, 2008

Not much going on tonight. I'm worn out from the run to base - fine doctor's appointment, cancelled dental appointment, and various errands - and it's time to get the kiddies to bed, after which I'll probably read for a while, and then crash.

But I leave you with this image. If I had to head back to the Cube Farms tomorrow, wouldn't this be a sweet spot to work? Check out this article for more cube ideas, some quite amusing.

25 February, 2008

I Got Nuthin'

Nuthin' to see here...move along.

Seriously, it was a very slow Monday. I spent it doing laundry/dishes and reading, and waiting for the car to be ready. Car? It has a lovely new starter, sounds great and starts like a dream, and is happy to be back.

My evening's been a tad more hectic. Dropped David at Cubs at 6:30 and took advantage of the 90-minute wait to go to Tesco and get some groceries with Lily. Poor Lily - Mondays are really tough because she ends up going to bed 90 minutes later than usual. Once Dadster is home, one of us can stay home putting her to bed when the other is running David up to Cubs.

Tomorrow is a run-around day, with doctor and dentist appointments for David. I'll bring my knitting :)

24 February, 2008

Still No Knitting

If you're popping in to see what's on my needles, my apologies. My one-row scarf languishes on a side table. I haven't picked it up for even one of those rows since before David came home.

And now he's gone again. He left before dawn today, and has arrived safely in Germany. We'll have him back a week after Easter. Sigh.

Car troubles: the update. A wonderful mechanic (not my usual, but D's new one, an acquaintance of ours who does a lot of work on Peugeots) has taken the non-starter away and will be working on it first thing in the AM. Kids have rides to school lined up, and with luck, everything will be back to normal by afternoon.

We had a quiet day at home, being carless, and now the kids are abed, and I am catching up on blogs. I think it will be an early night for me as well.

Here's to some knitting in the week to come!

23 February, 2008


David home - wheeee! Lovely day out today with the family - wheeee! Dinner out as well - wheeee!!

Starter dying on motor? Pheh.

AA Roadside Assistance? Priceless.

Fortunately, the airport car service is booked to take David to Heathrow (in 8 hours) anyway.

Unfortunately, replacing a starter on a Sunday here? Near impossible.

22 February, 2008

Keepin' It Random, since 2005

Heh. Seriously, we're all wrapped up in having David around till dawn on Sunday so not a lot of blog time, but does anyone here play or remember playing Farkle? My sister and her friends used to play it a lot, and I thought it was a gas, but it completely left my mind until this morning, when, for some odd reason, all I could think about was Farkle.

The game is only played with six dice and paper/pencil to keep score, but the rules seemed very convoluted to me. But hey, Bunco confuses me. Seriously...

You can even play Farkle on the computer now. Who knew?

21 February, 2008

My Cup Runneth Over...

My baby is back. Ignore the utter dorkiness of the picture and focus on those smiles. [Confidential to Chrissie - you're right about the shag cut. I'm going short next month.]

20 February, 2008

MIscellany in Picture Form

Who guessed that I downloaded the pictures from my camera today? Points to you. Here are a few various shots. First are the lovely birthday flowers my friend Susie sent me, because she's a doll and did I mention she's wonderful? One week later they still look great - all the blooms have opened up now and are so pretty. Next we have David As Figurehead. He was noodling around in the playground at Sandringham back when we had sunshine. When was that? I forget, it's been foggy for so long. The hundreds of clay figures are a display at the British Museum. They are hosting an exhibition of the Qin dynasty terracotta army figures, and some school children made these in connection with the exhibit. They're great - click to get a close-up. And the last shot - that's Lily on the train to London with one of her tiny Madame Alexander dolls. Mom and I collected a bunch of these when they were a McDonald's premium. Such lovely little dolls, jointed, with rooted hair and eyes that open and close...almost as cute as the owner pictured here.

19 February, 2008


I'm thankful for the dentist, my lovely wonderful dentist, who performed miracles on my back molar today.

I'm thankful for the friend who picked Lily up from school and took her to ballet for me, while I was with said wonderful dentist.

I'm thankful that David got a place in the Craft Club for the second half of term, because he has so much fun with it.

I'm thankful that David the elder will be home 48 hours from now, if all goes according to plan.

I'm not thankful for fog, although freezing fog? On trees? Gorgeous...

No watercolour class today because of the dental appointment...so we'll all have to wait until next Tuesday to see what fun stuff I learn.

18 February, 2008


So...unproductive...today. Must...get...motivated. Sigh. Three sleeps until David is home, as the kiddies put it. I hoped to accomplish more around the house today, this being the first day of school after the half-term break and all. Unfortunately, the bed wrapped itself around me for several hours midday, and the only thing I got done from my list was laundry. We did have a nice dinner out at some new friends', though, and that was great!

I'd say, "There's always tomorrow," but not so much. I have a dental appointment down at the base, the timing of which makes doing anything else pretty much impossible.

There's always Wednesday, however. Right?

17 February, 2008

Can you guess what sort of weather we're having today, and have been having of an evening lately? It's mighty cold right now, and all I want to do is curl up under a down comforter and eat rice pudding. What can I say?
I did make some inroads into the kitchen and laundry that awaited me after yesterday's London trip, so that's good. Now that the kids are abed, however, I've run out of energy.
Four more nights until David's home. Not that I'm keeping count or anything like that...
I promise to attempt some scintillation in tomorrow's post. Sorry, Gentle Readers, I'm fresh out tonight.

16 February, 2008

A Long Day

I took the kidlets into London today for a dip into the waters of the British Museum. Among other things, we enjoyed the Assyrian bits, some Mayan/Olmec/Aztec artifacts, and the non-mummy portion of the Egyptian stuff. We just wandered where our fancies took us, and I think another 10 trips might begin to cover it. Heh. I took a couple of pictures, and have to get them off the camera tomorrow.

Then we walked over to Covent Garden to hang about a bit, and have some early dinner. It was a gorgeous blue day, although very nippy at the start.

The ride home was crowded - lots of Chelsea football fans (they won) and shoppers meant I stood until Cambridge (45 minutes), but the kids got seats and Lily fell instantly asleep.

I'm overly tired, now, and there's a leftover kitchen mess and some laundry waiting for me, but it will have to wait another day. The bed takes priority!!

How's your weekend going?

15 February, 2008


I feel empty this evening. Nothing much to natter about. Everything seems awfully trivial today, somehow. The half-term holiday is coming to an end, and I am taking the kids into London tomorrow to Covent Garden and the British Museum. Early bedtime tonight for Miss Lily, getting back into the routine, but David stayed up to watch Ghostbusters II with me, and enjoyed it highly.

However you're heading into the weekend, I hope it will be a lovely one for you. Six days until my sweetness comes home, and counting.

14 February, 2008

Just for You

My valentine to you, Gentle Reader(s)! You're the greatest...

(Thanks, Jill, for pointing me to these at this site.)

13 February, 2008


Aaaaarrrr, me hearties. There be treasure maps galore in this house. David started the trend a little while ago, and is now drying his tea-stained treasure. Lily and her friend Lydia caught the bug and they're working on their own maps, too.

Wednesday, Hump Day, 8 days to go until David gets back Day, the day goes by many names. I'm feeling a bit wrung-out today, but OK. Maybe a long hot bath this evening. That sounds very nice.

12 February, 2008

Night Out!!

Thanks to my wonderful friend, Ruth, who is able to come babysit tonight, I will be enjoying an evening with the squadron spouses' group. I think it's important to participate in the group functions when I can, but with David away, it's been impossible to make the night events.

Think of it! A chance to see some folks I rarely get to see, who know what it's like when your partner's deployed/TDY, who are funny, interesting, and like chocolate. Pretty much a perfect evening, I think.

Not much else going on today...we got a late start, and I need to put away some laundry, pick up a little around the house, and write some notes for Ruth about bedtime, etc.

11 February, 2008

Feelin' Pretty Special

Today is my birthday, and it's been a grand one! Thank you, everyone, for the calls, the e-cards, the e-mails, the flowers, and unexpected gifts. I'm also grateful to my kids, who gave the gifts of patience and good cheer all day long on a day full of dentist, errands, late meals, and the world's smallest cake. What good people they are.

Now that bedtime is over (much later than usual because of a delayed dinner and an after-dinner game of Doctor Who trivia), I'm settled in to read a new-to-me novel and enjoy the quiet. Ahhhhhhhh...

10 February, 2008

Hello, Mister Sun!

Hello, Mister Sun, hello, hello. Hello, Mister Sun, hello. Shine down, shine down, and make our apples grow!

That tune (a little ditty from Lily's reception class) has been running through my head all weekend. I'm just beside myself at two glorious sunny days in a row, when we can be outside, without parkas, walking or running or sniffing the air, or what have you. Fantastic to know that spring is in the air.

The kids have some little sniffles, but I think it's just a reaction to all this fresh air. They're pretty happy, too!

Hope your weekend is wonderful, wherever you are.

09 February, 2008

Remember the Meme!

Or is it Remember the Maine? Heh.

Annalea over at The Passionate Mind has done the Seven Things About Me meme, and has such thoughtful answers I feel like a total slacker. I've been tagged, so see this post for my seven things, because as number 7 on that list says, I'm laaaaazy!! Thanks for the tag, Annalea. It was neat to read your seven. Anyone who wants to do the meme, rock on, and shout out in the comments so I can come read yours, too.

I've also been tagged for the You Make My Day award, and thanks a gabillion to Lynn and...ack, I'm blanking!! Who else tagged me?

In any event, you all make my days - I love reading your comments here, and I love your blogs. So, thank you.

08 February, 2008

A Little Telly

Keepin' it light here, on this gorgeous, sunny day. We head into half-term break next week. Wish me luck and fun times. I have a few activities squirreled away for the kids, and some day destination possibilities, so I think the week will go quickly.

Meanwhile, my oh-so-very-beloved Life on Mars is not airing any more, but the sequel program premiered last night. Ashes to Ashes. Got it downloaded from the BBC to watch this evening. (Check out their free iPlayer if you are in the UK, might I just say. It rawks.) I shall always miss my lovely Sam Tyler - a compelling character if ever there was one - but it's nice to have the other boys back in town.

07 February, 2008

The Princess Bride

Oh, how I love this movie. The joy of it never gets old for me. And David? As yoooooooou wiiiiiiiish!

funny pictures

06 February, 2008

Two Weeks.....

Two looong weeks to go, and David will be home. We're both hitting the "Man I Miss You So Much I Want to Throw Things and Snipe at People" stage. Too bad he won't be home for Valentine's Day, but I am sure we can work a delayed version out. Heh.

Otherwise, all is well. Gorgeous day weatherwise today. Had a playdate/dinner guest again, and that went well. I'm ready for the kids to go to bed now, though. I need some alone time.

Sorry I'm not more scintillating. Maybe tomorrow will bring a tad of excitement...who knows?

05 February, 2008

Watercolours: Week Four

Today we finished up our Hunstanton Cliffs pictures. Check out the before and after shots below.

At one point, the instructor used my picture to demonstrate some things on the left of the page [circled in bottom picture]. He used much stronger colours to pick out details and add contrast, even using straight red on the cliffs at one point (yes, I gasped a bit). It makes so much more of an impact.

I added in reflections, deepened tones and added details every old where, and sketched in little figures in the background. Ehhh on the boats, etc. But I see what they can do for a picture, adding depth and drawing the eye in.

No class next week, as it's half-term. I will miss it. I haven't done any painting on my own yet, but I think I will, rather than go into withdrawal...

04 February, 2008

Spring in the Air, and Winter....

Today's been all over the map, weatherwise. The morning started out windy and bright, the wind died down a bit and the sun stuck around to make walking a sheer pleasure, and then, as I waited for the kids in the playground this afternoon, the skies opened up. It poured rain for about 20 minutes, and now it's clear and fresh again. Ahh, England, you do like to surprise me all day long.

You would think by now I'd have smartened up about carrying more layers of various kinds, but not so much... Ideally, I need a heavy coat, a light jacket, a cardigan, a scarf and gloves. Maybe a hat, too. Just for one day's worth of weather. I was overdressed in a parka this morning, but didn't have a scarf with me(borrowed one!) which was more necessary. For school run time, I switched to a light trenchcoat (AND my own scarf) but forgot the umbrella. Heh.

Maybe I just need a wardrobe cube in the boot of the car. I have spare clothes for the kidlets, as well as cleaning supplies, after the last carsickness episode. Don't know ... if I add much more, I won't have room for anything else, like groceries.

Tomorrow is Super Tuesday in the US. If you're registered in one of the 24 states having primaries, I hope you'll vote. Already sent my absentee ballot in last month. It's going to be very interesting to watch. I'll probably stay up far too late to wait for returns. I always do...

03 February, 2008


This morning, David was in the (packed) West Newton church with some other schoolmates for the Queen's visit there. Lily and I were waiting outside with the other onlookers. We brought snowdrops from our garden for the Queen, who stopped to take them from Lily and spoke to her. She smiled, and in her lovely voice, she asked Lily, "Did you pick these yourself?" Lily was awestruck. And dumbstruck. What a moment!

02 February, 2008

Decluttering - A Small Update

You might recall when David and I decluttered his bookshelves and tidied his room. I followed that up by tidying Lily's room and toy shelves. Well, she did a pretty fair job of keeping things neat, but a couple of weeks ago, as promised, I went in to de-toyify. After an hour and a half, I'd removed two bin bags full of soft toys and things, and two more bin bags full of junky toys and no-longer-loved toys.

Here's the final result of the Toy Shelves Purge. The key - everything has a place now. Special dolls go in cubbies; the tea party set has its own cubby, as does the play house. Bins have specific things in each one: princess and fairy dolls in one; Mr Potato Head and family in another, Playmobil in another, puppets and ponies in another (it cracks me up that so many of the preferred toys begin with P). The bottom row of bins contains soft dolls, and soft toys that ARE played with. See how much neater the shelves are?

Each time we've cleaned up, even after playdates, it's taken lmuch less than 5 minutes, and Lily has taken the mantra up too - "it's easy to tidy because... everything has a place!" Now, if I can achieve this with my OWN junk!

01 February, 2008

On a rather blustery evening, I'm huddled in the living room, thinking of random things for which I'm thankful:
A working furnace.
A pretty room to spend time in.
A REALLY BIG mug for hot drinks.
A wonderful husband who "talks" to me as much as he can by email, even when cut cables in the Middle East mean no morale calls and no unofficial email accounts are getting through.
A wonderful husband, period.
Tesco Light Choices ready meals.
Children who want to talk to me and play games with me.
Children who are cuddly and affectionate.
Children who have early bedtimes, which minimizes their hours of meanness.
My watercolour class.
Extra brushes and paint so I can spend some time painting with the kids tomorrow.
Good friends who care about me.
Yarn to pet.
Down comforters.
And you, Gentle Reader.
I hope your days are good ones, wherever you are as you read this.
(Image courtesy of this art studio website.)

Oh, Nerts!

I missed a day. Sorry about that.