Saturday, 30 July 2016

Saturday Morning

Good morning all it is dull and overcast this morning and yesterday we had the wrong kind of rain! It was just enough to wet the washing but not enough to water the garden.  We really could use a good few hours of steady rain in the mean time I will trundle around with the hosepipe.

We had our feed back session from the psychologist who is only just in long trousers and after his session of 30 minutes with each of us he has decided that our relationship is completely broken and we should get a divorce.  The boy is a fool and has no idea exactly what that would entail.  How pray do you divorce a bedridden deaf old man and not be the biggest bitch in Christendom I promised to look after him and I will.   Presumable the wedding vows mean nothing [in sickness and in health] yes it is tough but we have been through so much now is not the time to throw in the towel.  Beside the only winners in a divorce are the lawyers.  Anyway, we are now off his books unless there is a re-referral which I sincerely hope there isn't.  We will continue to muddle along as best we can and probably better without well meaning interference. At one point he suggested that Mike go into respite care which he promptly refused as he is happier at home which should have told him something.  He needs a bit more life experience before he goes around dishing out advice about which he knows nothing. End of rant.

I never did get to the shops yesterday so today it is a must and my pile of ironing is growing so I must make a start on that.  Denzil brought home some chicken satay which I though I would do with some egg fried rice for lunch and for supper hopefully I will find something appealing while out shopping. I think I have the ingredients to make another batch of gazpacho so that is a possibility as everyone loves it.  We will be four for both meals today then tomorrow we will be three for both meals unless Denzil wants something left on a plate for him when he comes in a midnight.  Running this hotel is keeping me on my toes. Fortunately both boys are quite capable of cooking so they often do the supper if I have done the lunch which certainly spreads the load.

Well thats about it for this morning time to get going - dilemma, if I water will it rain later?  If I don't it will stay dry for sure!!!!!!

Friday, 29 July 2016

Friday morning

Good morning all and a lovely sunny one it is.  We did have some rain yesterday but not enough to do any real good.  It was not until I was on my way home from Shiona's that the rain started and what a surprise I had the windscreen wipers just switched themselves on what a neat trick.  I also noticed that as you drive into heavily shaded areas the dash board lights also just come on.  How exciting it is and interesting that such little things are so pleasing.  

I still heard nothing about the coffee machine and I am coming to the conclusion that the money I saved on the car would be better spent on replacing the coffee machine as it is so heavily used.  As it is the main brew unit that is bust I expect the repair price will be huge so I think I will cut my losses and get another machine.  

The dogs are both exhausted after spending the day charging around Shiona's big garden one of her Westies has decided that my dogs need to be chased off the premises but his little legs are not up to the job and Tubby just out runs him and Dan just jumps over him.  In the end he gives up as it is obvious he is not going to win.  We all killed ourselves laughing when he and Tubby had words and Hamish lay on the ground claiming to be mortally wounded when that didn't work he hobble carrying a front paw. It was a very good piece of acting but it illicited no response from us so he gave it up.

The weather was perfect and we ate our lunch in the garden Shiona had done a nice dish of chicken thighs cooked on a bed of multiple vegetables which we ate with freshly baked ciabatta rolls to dunk in the gravy or should that that be jus!!! anyway it was lovely.  Isn't it amazing how food you have not had to cook yourself always tastes so good.  The men sorted themselves out for lunch and I was back before Denzil had to leave for his late shift.  It is quite amazing how little traffic there is now that the schools have broken up and people are off on their holidays.  I am gradually getting used to the new car which is much more responsive that the old one so I am inclined to be a bit heavy handed with it but I'm sure it wont take long for me to acclimatise to the new beast.

I have no real plans for today just the usual meals and house chores and probably some shopping as we are running low on some essentials.  Then at 4pm we are expecting this feed back session from Barry.  I don't think he can add anything to the mix and I will be pleased to have him off our backs.  It has been a lovely peaceful week now that they have decided to leave us alone,  everyone has tried their best but it has taken a long time for them to realise there is nothing they can do if Mike refuses to cooperate.  If he chooses to lie in bed all day that is exactly what he will do.  He asked me yesterday why the physios are not coming and I explained for the hundredth time that they had given up on him as he refused to do his exercises which he vehemently denies.  Because his short term memory is shot he has forgotten all the efforts we put in to make him move.  

Well thats about it for this morning time to get the show on the road and do something constructive have a good day all................

Thursday, 28 July 2016

Thursday Morning

If only we had smelly vision both the lilies and the rose have the most incredible scent.  The rose arrived yesterday already in bloom.  It was advertised as being heavily scented and boy they weren't joking it has the most incredible scent.  Despite being dull and overcast yesterday we had  one miserable shower not enough to do any good but the forecast is looking like we are due for some rain in the coming days.  Most of the garden plants are well enough established to weather a bit of drought but the new stuff and stuff in pots need constant watering so I will be pleased not to have to do that for a few days.

Sorry about you sheets Joy they would have dried beautifully here.  I have been doing a lot of washing while the weather is in our favour.  Today I am off to Shiona's for lunch so first I have to make sure there is something for the men to eat while I am out.  I have some of the Aldi bassa fillets in the freezer which are nice and easy to cook and the fridge is stuffed with salad bits so they wont starve.

The company who were organised to come and mend the coffee machine sent me a satisfaction form to give them some feed back.  Believe me they got just that!!!! after the initial contact nothing has happened.  I think they are putting the cart before the horse.  It is proving a much more difficult job than I thought.  

Yesterday was a lovely quiet day I just pottered around doing very little. Denzil was home from his early shift by lunch time so we had an all time favourite of pasta [good quality dried] with lashings of butter and parmesan.  Who would have though three simple ingredients could make such a nice meal of course you do need a salad to go with it but it really couldn't be easier.  Supper was equally easy we had Thai fish cakes [Aldi] with sugar snap peas which Denzil prepared.  As you can see I am making the most of having the boys around but I have to be careful not to become too lazy.  James was up a dawn and took the dogs for a walk and cleaned the kitchen of washing up.  Now all I have to do is have a shower and get my act together then drive over to Shiona's.  

I watched eat well for less last night and it was nice to see a family who were prepared to give things a go and to realise that they were spending way more than was necessary.  Pasta sauces in jars are seldom any good and making a sauce from scratch takes minutes.  In fact you can make a sauce in the time it takes to boil the pasta. I was also fascinated by the research that is going on in Israel where they are looking at gut flora and which foods are right for you and your particular gut flora.  What they were looking at is which foods cause a sugar spike and surprisingly some people are better on white bread, croissants and chocolate ice cream while others are not.  It all depends which bacteria you have in your gut and how efficient they are at dealing with a particular food.  Apparently it is variety that is the key the more different foods you eat the better especially in the fruit and vegetable department.

On that happy note I must make a move and get on with the day as time is running away with me.
Have a good day all.................

Wednesday, 27 July 2016

Wednesday morning

Good morning all this morning it is cool and cloudy and looking a lot like rain which would be most welcome here.  Yet again I am waiting for a call for the repair company and I never know what is a reasonable time to allow them before they contact you.  I know that for me it feels like ages but it has only been a couple of days so I will hang on until next week then I will start searching for someone else to come and repair the coffee machine.  I have a shrewd idea that it is going to be horribly expensive to mend as it is the main brew unit that has broken in which case I might do better looking at replacing the machine.  It takes a lot of use with four adult coffee drinkers in the house so it needs to be as strong as a commercial coffee machine.  

Yesterday was a nice quiet day Denny did her stuff and the house is nice and clean I have a mountain of ironing to do but as it is nice and cool today would be a good day to get that done.  My trip to the dentist was uneventful and nothing but a bit of sandblasting was required.  I have know this dentist for many years and I used to work with his wife many years ago so I trust him implicitly which I think is important.

Barry, the sociologist, has been plaguing the life out of me with phone calls trying to make an appointment to see Mike and I so I have relented and he is coming on Friday at 4pm.  Just what he has managed to glean from and half and hour with each of us I cannot imagine, given that I have been at it for 35+ years.  But who knows perhaps he will come up with some earth shattering insight into our troubled relationship.  He is the last of the people who will be coming to the house everyone else has either given up or been told that there is nothing they can do if Mike refuses to cooperate. I must say that it has been lovely not to have a constant stream of people coming and going and generally disrupting the household.  Peace and quiet makes a nice change and I am not constantly on door duty.

Tomorrow I am going over to Shiona's for lunch so I had better look for something for the rest of the family for lunch.  Mike has finally relented and is now using the toilet instead of the commode which has made a big difference to all of us.  None of us would have minded if it were necessary but out of laziness is not and excuse.  I must say that I am much more relaxed now that I have given up fighting and left Mike to his own devices.  There comes a point when you have to recognise you are flogging a dead horse.

Well thats about it for today time to put the bins out and have a trawl around the freezer for some ideas.  I have a fridge full of salad ingredient so that takes care of the veg now I need something to go with the salad.  Perhaps a salad nicoise would be a good idea as I have plenty of tuna to use or maybe fish cakes.  

Have a good day all and if you have rain I am jealous.  

Tuesday, 26 July 2016

Tuesday morning

Good morning all it looks like another lovely day with temperatures I can cope with.  We have been dry for ages but I believe rain is on the way.  Let's hope it rains at night and we still have lovely days. There has been no news about the coffee machine so we are making do with the Tassimo which is certainly better than instant.  

I went to the bank yesterday and explained what I had heard and was assured that they don't freeze joint accounts if one party dies.  They simply remove that person once they have the death certificate so that is one nightmare sorted.  I am trying hard not to leave a mess behind me it really is the last thing relatives want at what is already a difficult time.  Shiona was left in a mess when her husband died without making any provisions for her.  He had taken out various life insurance policies which she knew nothing about until they sent letters asking for payment of the premium.  Fortunately she has her head screwed on and managed to sort out the mess but it was a hell of a job for a newly widowed person to deal with especially as she had a business partnership to dissolve as well.  

I was very lazy last night and we had take away pizza for supper which means we have enough cardboard to open a shop.  My recycling fills up so quickly these days that I had to go to the council offices yesterday and get more recycling bags.  It would make much more sense if we had a wheelie bin for recycling instead of a constant stream of polythene bags.  

Anyway Dennie is here and already making head way so it is time I got going and got dressed as I have a dental appointment this morning.  Fingers crossed there is nothing wrong and just a sandblasting will be all that is needed.

On that happy not I will leave you and go and get on with my day - have a good one and enjoy the sun while we have it.

Monday, 25 July 2016

Monday morning

Good morning all we have a bit of a cloudy sky this morning but plenty of bright sunshine too.  It is a comfortable 19 degrees and the nights have been a bit cooler thank heavens.  The gazpacho went down well for lunch and for supper we had some sticky chicken wings with a large salad and some creamed mushrooms.  The mushrooms didn't really fit the menu but they needed eating.  I left a portion available for Denzil when he came home but I see it is still there so I guess it will be my lunch for today. Left overs like this are a bit of a nuisance as it kind of mucks up todays menu.  Not that I had anything exotic planned.  

I noticed that some of my little plants have keeled over, that hot spell was just too much for them, but the majority have survived so that is OK but we really could use some rain.  I have placed an order for a pot grown rose to fill in the big gap so that will need looking after for the summer while it establishes.   However I am trying not to give myself too much work to do and as the green house has been left fallow I can spend some more time on the other plants.  It is very tempting to buy plants but then you have to look after them which is not always sensible if your plate is already full.  

The fish went mad when I threw a couple of big handfuls of koi sticks into the pond so they are really ready to eat the water temperature needs to be 10 degrees for the fish to want feeding and I guess we have reached that point.  Fish food is jolly pricy at £24 per tub but hopefully the tub will last a while. 
I still haven't got round to doing the filters but it is on my to do list which as usual is growing longer and longer.  

Tomorrow is going to be busy as Denny is coming and I have a dental appointment.  The dentist is in Maidstone which is a good 30 minutes drive away so I will have to leave in good time as it will be rush hour and the traffic will be bad. Although now that the schools have broken up it is noticeably lighter.

I am still thrilled with the new car although is it a less posh model than the last it has enough bells and whistles to keep me happy and more to the point it is only just run in for a diesel engine so it should have plenty more years of carefree motoring.  Well that is the theory anyway!!!! 

Today I would like to go to the bank and do some finance shuffling so that our savings are earning they best they can in these uncertain times.  I have heard some very disturbing stories of the freezing of joint accounts until probate has been done which could leave us up a gum tree if anything were to happen to Mike.  For this reason I am going to open a separate savings account with easy access but put it in my name only so it will be accessible.  Mike already has a separate savings account so he is covered if I keel over.  It seems sensible to me to make these adjustments at this stage of our lives as neither of us want to left with financial problems  at difficult time so anything I can do to ameliorate the situation now seems sensible.

OK time for a second coffee and get started on the days chores.

Sunday, 24 July 2016

Sunday morning

Good morning all another bright sunny start to the day still no rain and the garden is getting desperate. According to the weather forecast it might not rain until Wednesday so I will be on watering duty.  James is out with the dogs and as yet I haven't brought my mind to bear on the lunch issue.  I went and did a bit of shopping yesterday as there are some items I cannot get at Aldi I then make a pilgrimage to Tesco.  We are all particularly fond of their pink grapefruit squash because it isn't very sweet.  I tend to buy 6 bottles at a time so it lasts for while but with 4 of us drinking it and the weather so hot we are going through it at a rate of knots.

The boys took the dogs out yesterday afternoon as the tide was in and they could have a nice swimming session.  Dan still looks skinny but he is building some serious muscles and really does plough through the water.  The new dog box is ideal as it it is easily wiped out if it gets very wet and the dogs have accepted it very well.  

I have been quietly thinking and lunch today will be some gazpacho soup and sticky chicken wings and salad.  All nice and quick and easy with the minimum of cooking required.  I think I will make the gazpacho in the nutriblast as I would like a nice smooth finish.  Sadly the bread I have is a multi seed loaf so it will need blitzing to mash up the seeds, however I'm sure it will work fine.

Having moaned about all the comings and goings of the people coming to see and assess Mike I must say that a week of no one is really very restful.  Knowing that there is no one due at any time makes for a different take on the day and a more relaxed approach.  Suddenly the house feels like my home not a transit station and though Denzil comes and goes he causes very little disruption.  If he is on an early shift he slips out at 5am without waking anyone and when he comes home at midnight again he slips in quietly and disturbs no one.

Time for more coffee I think have a good day all 

Saturday, 23 July 2016

Saturday morning

Good morning all nice and cool this morning down to 18 degrees and very pleasant.  Still no rain so I am on watering duty.  I rang another repair company about the coffee machine and guess what I now have to wait for them to ring me.  In the mean time the Tassimo machine has been called back into service so I have a nice cappuccino sitting on the desk.  Good job it is now at home not in the caravan at least it makes a good standby.  

I have been feeling pretty grotty for the last couple of days I think the heat and the very high pollen count has got to me as I am very breathless and have had banging headaches which may be due to caffeine deprivation.  I walked up to the shops yesterday and made really heavy weather of it, my legs felt like they were made of lead.  I am hoping that a good down pour will lay the pollen and that might see me improve if not then I must make an appointment to see the quack.  If you remember I had this happen to me in the caravan when I was exposed to huge doses of pollen.  I am not nearly that bad but feeling very similar so I am hopeful that it is just a reaction to the dust in the air at the moment.

I boiled a piece of ham for lunch yesterday and have made lentil soup with the stock which is very un-salty so much so that I have had to add salt to the soup.  I made a large bowl of coleslaw and we still had some potato salad to go with the meat.  

I never managed to get to the bank last week but as luck would have it I now have a cheque from the DVLA to put in so next week will be fine.  

It is lovely and quiet at the moment all the male creatures are still asleep and I have a few minutes to myself to enjoy my coffee in the early morning sun shine before I get stuck into the days chores. I usually start with a blitz through the kitchen which is invariably a mess as we have midnight snackers in the house.  I have no idea what to do for lunch so I may resort to a favourite tagliatelle with butter and cheese and a big salad.  Interestingly the dogs have just got up but had a quick whizz in the garden then gone straight back to bed completely ignoring me. At least they have twigged that if I am typing I am not much use to anybody and best left alone.

Right time for a second coffee and a think about the plan for the day. I think we are all in for lunch but Denzil will be working this evening and tomorrow is his long day so he will be out for both meals.  Next week is relatively quiet I have a dental appointment on Tuesday and I am going with Shiona to Benenden for some investigations on Thursday but other than that it is all quiet at the moment.  I have had an estimate to sort out the chicken run but it is going to be very expensive so I think I will be better off just buying gallons of weed killer and giving it a good spray in the early part of the year when the weeds are just appearing.  I think most of my little plants have survived the heat wave but the heuchera look rather sad and may not make it.  I have one big gap on the corner of a boarder and I thought I would put in a rose "Gertrude Jekyll" nice and scented and repeat flowering so hopefully an ideal plant for a dull corner.  

The pond pump needs cleaning again so that is a little extra job that needs doing and it is time to start feeding the fish as the water temperature is now up and they are coming up looking for grub. I am deliberately keeping them on short rations in the hope that they will stop breeding quite so prolifically. 

This is my kind of summer weather 20 degrees and sunny ideal.......

Friday, 22 July 2016

Friday morning

At last the heat has died down and last night was tolerably cool for sleeping.  The last few nights have been unbearably hot and sticky.

Still nothing from the coffee machine engineer so I will try another company and see if I have more success.  I finally got the nets done yesterday, I am not a lover of net curtains but they are definitely easier to clean than venetian blinds.

I spent some time in the kitchen yesterday and made a pepper stew some creamed spinach and we had the sausages for lunch and a nice potato salad I made using up the excess of potatoes.  I have the ingredients for a large bowl of coleslaw which we will have with some boiled ham for lunch.  The ham has been soaking over night so I hope it will not be too salty and I can make some soup with the boiling stock.

The sky looks very overcast but we are not forecast rain however I would be pleased to see some rain for the garden and to lay the pollen which is very high at the moment and is making us all a bit snuffly.

Well the plan for today is just the usual lunch and dinner and keeping the show on the road.  I for one am enjoying the cool air which is flooding in through the patio doors.  Have a good end to the week.

Thursday, 21 July 2016

Thursday Morning

Good morning all well yesterday was a day of two halves in the morning it was windy so we opened up all the windows the found we were getting loads of debris from the garden in the house.  Then the wind dropped and back came the heat.  This morning is a much cooler start and I am hoping the real heat will have dissipated.

Disaster has struck, my repair of the coffee machine proved to be temporary and now it is very dead so I am reduced to drinking tea.  I have contacted an engineer but as yet have not heard back from him.  

Mark, my old gardener, came and measured up the chicken run for a make over and just as well he did as I had to ask him to give me a hand getting Mike off the floor.  He had been using his bed table as a foot rest then managed to kick the whole thing over and roll off the bed onto the floor. No damage was done and we put Mike back up on his bed and I reassembled the bed table.  This has illustrated one thing to me and that is I cannot pick Mike up by myself.  He was a bit shaken up but unharmed but I think it put him off his supper which he left having hardly touched it.  We had the feather steaks for lunch with a big salad with loads of avocados and for supper I made an oriental soup with noodles coconut milk and prawns. It was really spot on for a hot day light but tasty.  

Today I have some very nice sausages which I will grill for lunch with the inevitable salad of some kind or maybe creamed spinach any we will cross that bridge when we come to it.  I think today is our last day before the rain hits so last chance to do some serious washing.  All the beds have been through plus some heavier coverlets and loads of towels however I still haven't got round to doing the nets perhaps today is the day.

Time for more tea :(