Friday, 27 November 2009

Reflection...

This week has been really weird. There has been some good things and also some bad things going on so i'm not sure whether its been good or not.

Good Things:
A good week at work
Got my work Christmas bonus
Had a laugh with my mum round last night
Much more prepared for Christmassy things

Bad Things:
Jamie finding out he has to work right through from Christmas Eve until Boxing Day
My beautiful black Christmas Tree being delivered to the wrong address yesterday, what a mess!
Looked like crap when I saw my ex in the shop last night....he looked smug, urgh.

At least me and Jamie have the weekend off together, and that means we are going to the Christmas Markets in Manchester on sunday, yay!!! I took my mum last year and she loved it (even though we were dying of cold), and J is excited about going (so am I!) so I'm looking forward to it :)
You may have noticed above that J is working over Christmas....which totally sucks. We can't do anything about it (he has pleaded with work to get one of the main days off but to no avail) so we are just going to have to work around it. We've agreed to open presents when he gets home from work Christmas Day morning, then he is going to sleep all day and I have promised him I'll cook him anything he wants for dinner before he goes to work again. We're going to have our proper 'Christmas Dinner' on the 27th because we both have that night off.

Right, I'd better go do something useful.

Hope all my US readers had a good Thanksgiving and aren't busting your guts on Black Friday!

xx

Wednesday, 25 November 2009

In A Rich Man's World...

Hurray for Pay Day!....It's all being saved for next week's bills though, boo.

I forgot to say the other day - I went to the dentist on monday (boo!). I used to not mind going at all, but after having a mega accident 3 years ago (where I got dropped face-first onto a kerb and had to have my jaw re-set and lips sewn up and all sorts...bleurgh) I've had to have alot of work done and I don't like it one bit :(
When I have some money I am saving like there's no tomorrow for veneers or implants or something because I totally can't hack it! Although, I have to admit my dentist is very sympathetic, he offers me anaesthetic for everything and he got me into a sedation clinic to have some teeth out because he knew I would freak being awake. So big love to my lovely greek dentist man!

There are two big stories in the news at the moment here in the UK -
First is the ongoing flooding issue in Scotland and North West England. Thankfully I am not quite north enough to get it - I'm just getting alot of annoying rain, but it really isn't nice to see so many people having lost their businesses, homes and livelihoods. The government has pledged some money to help out...but they can't really do anything until the rain stops, and it's been going on for a week now..
Second is the result of the British banks being taken to court. Basically, if you don't know - the British banks got taken to court to because the charges they raise for customers going overdrawn is extortionate (currently standing at around £35, regardless of how much you go overdrawn by). The court case has taken two years and today the Supreme Court ruled that they didn't have to do anything about the charges at all! So that leaves over 1 million UK people a little bit annoyed because they had put in claims to get the charges back and now they won't get a penny.
I'm split between both sides - On one hand I can see the customers point because £35 really is too much, especially when it doesn't matter whether you go 1p or £100 over, and the banks make literally billions in profits already. However, the banks make the charges so high to try scare people into not going overdrawn without asking - at the end of the day they are spending money that isn't theirs and if all we had was cash we'd not be able to do it.
Its just annoying that this can happen while we're still feeling the sting of recession, and while the banks get bailed out by the Government and the Bank Of England because they can't manage their funds right, the consumer gets no help at all. Not to mention the VAT is going back up from 15% to 17.5% in the new year!! Pffft.

Anywho, enough depressing news talk!
A couple of you have requested I put pictures up of my christmas tree this year - Don't worry, it will be up here like a flash! I'm currently waiting for it to be delivered and it'll be up in a week or so maybe....I think I might wait until 1st December. So i'll let you know when :)

Right, i'm off to watch Bruce Almighty with a nice cup of tea :)

xx

Tuesday, 24 November 2009

P.A.R.T.Y

Firstly, wow I really need to buck up my ideas with this - I haven't been busy, I just haven't been giving myself time to get on here and do my thing. So apologies to the 11 lovely people who like to know whats going on in my life!!

Secondly, the November 'No Sweets/Desserts Month' kind of faded away. I did really well....until I went to Scotland and me and Jamie had a lovely meal out with his family and I had some ice cream with butterscotch sauce...and it just kind of stopped a little bit. I haven't started eating mountains of crap again, but a few things have slipped back into my cupboards. I have to admit, it has cut down my intake of sugary wonderful goodness, but nothing stopped me having strawberries drizzled with condensed milk for dessert tonight :P

So, lets catch up. Friday night was Jill's Birthday Party.

(Jonni and Jill)
It was a joint for her 22nd and her brother's 40th so there were loads of people I didn't know. There was lovely food, a cheap bar, a dance-obsessed DJ, but best of all Karl (Jill's boyfriend) wrote a song for her and sang it infront of everyone!

(Karl Singing)
It was so so sweet, she cried (she was quite drunk) and we all cooed at how lovely it was. Me and J spent most of the night chatting away to Karl's mum and sister, they were so lovely!

(Jamie, Me, Karl's Mum and Sister)
I spent the weekend fussing around not really doing anything. Wrapped a few christmas presents but nothing else important. I'm trying not to do much if I can help it, I need to save my pennies! I have managed to finally buy my christmas tree though (thank god). I've gone for totally none-traditional this year, black tree with purple decoration :)

I got my first christmas card today off my Dad. He sent it early because it had to come all the way from Cyprus, but luckily for me they are spending christmas in the UK at my grandparents so I don't have to send their stuff abroad.

I didn't really have much to say really so it seems a little bit like an anti-climax haha. Oh well, no news is good news!!

xx

Thursday, 19 November 2009

You Won't Let Those Robots Defeat Me...

So today I bought another christmas present, yay! I also managed to get tickets to see Muse next september in the presale. They cost a damned fortune but it'll be worth it! 10 months isn't that long to wait right?!

I think I am almost up to date with everyone and everything now after my busy few days, it's taken me a while! So I will now pop up a couple of things to sum up my time...

* Everyone loves a gorilla to sit on.



* Everyone loves a singalong.


* Not everyone loves being surrounded by hungry ducks.


* Everyone can laugh at trees shaped like this:


And more than anything, I love moments like this:

♥ ♥ ♥

xxx

Wednesday, 18 November 2009

The Will Always Negates Defeat

Wow. I have been such a busy bee that I haven't been able to get on here and let you guys know whats been going on! I'll try to make it short so I don't drone on about nothing...

* Me and Jamie went to Kilmarnock to visit his family. We had a lovely meal out, spent more time than we would have liked sorting out money stuff with the bank, went bowling and had lots of takeaways.

* I had the day off work on monday and we went and fed the ducks in the park. It seems the weather has stopped so many people coming down so they were literally ravenous and we got pretty much surrounded (and I almost had my finger snapped off by a duck AND then by a swan too!)

* We went to see the Flaming Lips on monday night in Manchester :) It was wonderful as always with lots of balloons, streamers, confetti, bright lights, loud singalongs and a fantastic atmosphere. The best band I have seen live (for the 3rd time) ever:



* Tonight my best friend Jill had a photography exhibition on at her university so I went with her to check it out, it was cool. She had a photo on display (as did the rest of her course mates) and was almost the only one to not do a fashion-style one. So it stood out alot, making it super good. Yay Jilly!

Right, I can't be bothered trying to make more of this, I'm tired!

xx

Tuesday, 10 November 2009

Negatives (the photography kind)

Thanks for my comments about my Stress Relief Tips, i'm glad they were appreciated! :)
Also, I hope you will all be using my exclusive discount code for Love Hearts And Crosses to buy the ladies in your life something special.....no idea what i'm talking about? Check it out here.

Today is Jamie's payday (yay!) and this month that means two things. One - time to pay the rent. Two - Chinese for dinner!! It has been so long since I last had chinese takeaway, and damn it was good. Not to mention the fact that I got home to him having set out the dining table with candles for it :) (photos to follow...)

I have been scanning ALOT of negatives at work today. I quite enjoy doing it but it takes up alot of time, previewing the roll, selecting each individual image and then scan, scan, scan. I love how you can never quite see whats in a negative until it's been scanned in and enlarged - its like an unveiling....except not as exciting. Although, I do quite like seeing how ridiculous a poser Marc Bolan was (thats who the negs were of today). It still amazes me how good the quality of photography was 30-odd years ago too, the photographers back then were REAL photographers with actual skill to it...not like the myspace generation we have in music nowadays. Don't get me wrong, there are some cracking people out there...but there are just alot of lazy ones too. Digital photography allows mistakes, film photography doesn't, or does but you need a hell of alot of film! (I only have a digital camera myself by the way, I'm one of the lazy ones!)....Anyway, my point - give me a Mick Rock photo any day! -

(photo courtesy of the Syd Barrett Trust)

My mood is good this week so far, one more day of work until my long weekend in Scotland and more importantly only 5 days until I see the Flaming Lips again!!! They are my favouritest live band ever and I've been waiting all year for this gig. Roll on the best live show a band could ever give!

I said last week that I was going to do Post-It Tuesdays.....but I have too much to say today so I reckon i'll try to do Post-It Wednesday instead! (if I can....)

I can't talk anymore, I have wine to drink...... :P

xx

P.S. Oh I forgot to say, along with my candlelit takeaway dinner, I got 3 more Blue Nose Friends! That brings my grand total to 9 little guys....and again, there will be a photo to follow soon!

Monday, 9 November 2009

Love Hearts And Crosses

Today has been so cold! Radiators blaring at work, jacket for wearing in the stock room, I get the point Mr Weather - ITS WINTER!

So its the start of the week and back to the early mornings and work for a few days (i'm off thursday til monday haha!). I know i'm not the only one who finds it stressful now and again, especially with Christmas looming so I thought I'd share my Top 5 Tips for Relieving Stress:

1 - If you can afford it, spend a bit of money. No matter what anyone says Retail Therapy is a sure fire hit when it comes to relieving stress. Whether its buying a CD or a whole new wardrobe, we all know how good we feel when we've bought ourselves a little something (or a big something).

2 - STOP...and relax. Give yourself 30 minutes every day to just sit down and relax (preferably with a cup of tea and a couple of biscuits). Watch a bit of tv, listen to some music, have a bath, anything you can think of! We all work extra hard this month to prepare for the festive season but sometimes its hard to give yourself the time of day - so try!

3 - Get enough sleep. Nothing starts the day badly like 6 hours sleep followed by an early morning. Try to go to bed an hour earlier than normal, it'll make a world of difference. I am also a big fan of putting lavender oil on my pillow, two drops every 5/6 days and my sleep is much better.

4 - Plan ahead. I don't know about you but my life becomes a million times easier when I know what my plans are for the day, what i'm having for dinner, etc. And at this time of year writing a present list is crutial! Buy things early and you'll have nothing to worry about come December.

5 - Last but not least, try to enjoy yourself. Enjoy your job! Make the most of time with your family and friends! And if all else fails, do something really silly to make yourself laugh! Laughter is the best medicine and it will make you feel tons better.

I have a special gift for you all, and its just in time for Christmas too!
Love Hearts and Crosses have given me an exclusive discount code to give to all my lovely followers and readers! Yay!
Just enter 'quincifer' in the discount voucher box at the checkout and you will get 10% off your order!!!
This code is valid until 1st Jan 2010 too so if you want, you can save it until after Christmas to buy yourself something nice! They ship internationally and the website is updated all the time so go check it out!

Right, i'm off for a(nother) brew!

xx

Saturday, 7 November 2009

The Park

Not much to report or talk about today. Me and Jamie went to the park today....in the rain....to feed the ducks :)

It literally rained all through our walk there so we went to the cafe to dry off a bit and have a brew, during which it stopped raining. Then we left to walk home and the heavens opened again! I swear the sky was watching us, waiting.

My little Wall-E comes with me to alot of places and he is so photogenic (and a poser!) so I have started up a little photo blog just for him! Its called 'Wall-E Explorations' - please check it out!

Time for a brew in bed, Jamie is at work so its up to me to provide my own heat for the bed tonight!

xx

Friday, 6 November 2009

Snap, Crackle, Pop

Firstly, wow 8 comments on my last post and 9 followers! Thanks guys, I must be doing something right :)

I went to the local Bonfire & Fireworks display tonight at Chorley Cricket Club. There is usually one on the big park but they couldn't get enough volunteers so the cricket club got alot more spectators. It was dead good, check out my fireworks camera skills:



xx

Tuesday, 3 November 2009

Hold My Breath

Following on from what I said about my up/down/up/down thoughts in yesterday's post, today would be a perfect scream, moan and stamp my feet day. I have been royally f**ked over by the bank...yet again...BUT, I'm going to refrain. I don't want to get a reputation for being a moaner, my life isn't always this bad. I just seem to be going through a bad patch financially. So I am not going to talk about it anymore, it just brings me down and I really need things to keep my head up at the moment...


I'm going to Scotland next weekend. Its going to be slightly weird because I got so used to the 3hr train journey on my own (visiting J before he moved down here with me) - I used to just go into my own world on the train....but now we'll both be going up to visit his family for a few days so I will have to be fully social for the journey and more importantly awake! I figure a pack of cards will sort it....anyone else have any ideas for time-killers on the train?
I'm looking forward to going up there but at the same time it upsets me a little. Not because I don't want to be there, I totally do!....its just that it makes me wish I could see my family too. I have my mum up the road but we aren't 'close'. It makes me think back to family christmas's when I was younger, when my parents were together. Both sets of grandparents would come and stay and we'd have such a good time - lots of board games, watching films and a huge dinner with us all squashed round the table. It was even still good when it was just me, Dad, Max (stepmum), Dan and Adam (stepbrothers). I guess Christmas gets a little quiet in that stage between leaving your family and starting your own.
It'll be good though, Jamie is taking me out for dinner with his brother, cousin and mum to this gorgeous restaurant called Elliotts and I have a lovely new purple dress I got from ASOS a couple of weeks ago to wear for it. Did I mention I love purple? I love purple.

Oh before I forget - as of next week, I will start doing Post-It Tuesdays
One of the guys I follow, Meeko does it every week and it looks a fun challenge so I'm up!

Oh and P.S. - Day Three of No Sweets/Dessert Month, still ok......for now

xx

Monday, 2 November 2009

Find The Perfect Mix

See this is how annoyed I get with my own brain - yesterday I was moaning about debt and money and stuff, today I am totally ok! I am planning more christmas presents, working out in my head what my wages are going on this week. I need to get a hold of my thought scale!

Day Two of No Sweets/Dessert Month - doing pretty darned ok. Had a can of Vimto at work and half a spoon of sugar in my cup of tea earlier to keep me going haha. It doesn't feel too hard to be honest but I might not have hit withdrawal yet. A guy I used to work with tried to stop drinking Coca-Cola after averaging 3 cans a day and it made him really ill :/ I haven't cut out fizzy drinks so that helps (although I don't drink them very often anyway), but I realised this afternoon that Bonfire Night on thursday is going to mean cotton candy....and I really will want some! I might get Jamie to buy some and then have a tiny mouthful. I'm not planning to cut sugary stuff out of my diet completely, I just want to make sure I'm right in thinking that its the main thing that is making me feel fat and bloated alot. I mean, as far as savoury food goes I eat pretty well. I cook alot of proper meals with good amounts of vegetables, not too much carbs....so hopefully its the flipping sugar-based goodies and I can learn to cut down!

Talking of Bonfire Night...yay! We're going to Worden Park, Leyland this year because there isn't going to be one in Chorley (weirdly). I love it so much, its like the night of the year that really says "hey guys, its totally winter out here!" Big coats and scarves and gloves and hugs while watching fireworks :) Can't wait.

Right, J is at work tonight so that means one thing for me - time to do some washing! (joy.) Chores make the night go faster so I don't have to sit on my own (i'd go out but pay day just isn't here yet!)

xx

Sunday, 1 November 2009

Where Do I Go From Here

"Money, if it does not bring you happiness, will at least help you be miserable in comfort" - Helen Gurley Brown

Do you ever get the feeling that you aren't really getting anywhere?
I've done alot of things in my life that I am proud of, pleased with and are happy to have done. I have my independence, a stable job, a wonderful relationship, and I'm slowly getting myself out of my debt. But thats the problem...the debt.
I might sound like a moaning minnie alot but being in debt really does get me down. I know its my own problem, I spent money that wasn't mine etc etc....I just feel like i'm taking baby steps to walk out of an eternal canyon of payments and bad credit. I reckon almost a quarter of my wages goes to paying debt, and when you take away the more-than-half that covers rent and bills then it doesn't leave me with much money to live on.
I'm not a material person, I appreciate what I have in my life and know that I'm lucky to have electricity, running water, clean clothes, right up to sky tv and a pc. I guess I find it hard to live without something to keep my mind off my long struggle with money. Funny really, when I need money to take my thoughts away from the hold that money has over my life.
I really need to start planning alot more. I know I have more money at my disposal now that I don't live on my own, I just need to work out how to spend it right.

Anywho! I guess its a little bit related....its Day One of my "No Sweets/Dessert Month" diet and man am I finding it hard!!! I really took for granted how often I had a treat. The odd biscuit here, a packet of sweets there....
Right now, I am craving cake. Big, soft, fluffy victoria sponge cake. Urgh, 30 days is a long time!!!

I'm usually a moaner when it comes to rain and wind, but words cannot describe how fantastic it was waking up to horrific weather this morning. Theres nothing like a rainstorm to make you feel snuggly in bed :)