Sunday, March 27, 2011

summer's here?

What a beautiful day. Did a little work this morning then off to Chartwell for a little while. Bought these toppers for my bean poles (yes, I know they're a bit wobbly):

The garden is what you might call 'romantic' aka 'a bit of a mess'. My brother says it is 'eccentric':

But summer must be nearly here because I have started the first little fire to sit by in the twilight and watch the bats and stuff.

And of course we got an extra hour of sunlight as well so that was nice.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

wishing on a star

sums up how I feel this evening ..

rather like Fawlty Towers

Rather like an episode of Fawlty Towers weatherwise today: it was a bit cool when I went out, then it rained a bit, then the sun came ut, then it was overcast but warm ...

So these flowers aren't in the sun but I still get a cheer in my soul when I pass them on the way out of the front door each day:

I'm hoping for some gravel to freshen up the edge of the path for Mothers' Day (hint hint son)

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

in the sunshine

sorry I didn't get a pic of it but there was this moment when I looked out the kitchen window this morning and a shaft of light hit a single daffodil ... I had to wander up the garden for a look ..

Tuesday, March 22, 2011


You got the feet this eve! Been sitting nearly all day so the achy feet must be psychological....

Monday, March 21, 2011

why I do the job I do

It's been a long day. Tomorrow, I probably still won't get through all my e-mails, people who want to see me for good reasons etc.

All the same, I like what I do (most days); so I'll keep doing it for a while longer.

By the way, always good to speak to others who love their work as well. That's one of the best things about it!

Sunday, March 20, 2011

it's still a bit cool outside

Still a bit too chilly to eat out at lunchtime. But I am determined to at least get out and prepare the veg beds later on. Might light the fire outside later too.

Mum's best china - I like to use it occasionally.

Saturday, March 19, 2011


The garden's coming back to life and looks nice in the spring sunshine.

This one is my favourite spot, so you may have seen it before:
and here is the spot which I call the woodland area (it's only about 2 metres by 2 metres!

and finally, the seat in the 'meadow' (3m by 1/2 m!) next to the pond

Went for a trip into Kent today and the countryside was as beautiful as ever. But my little bit of Surrey is rather lovely too. Now it's back to marking and more coffee!

Friday, March 18, 2011


Hooray it's Friday! This weekend all I have to do is catch up! No outside stuff or trips or whatever - just catch up with marking, chores etc. I'll feel great on Sunday evening. Ahhhhh

And for now, it's feet up and relax!

Was going to post a pic of my feet here but thought you might prefer I didn't .....

Wednesday, March 16, 2011


I have been enjoying my Lent project this year. It's about reading a chapter a day and reflecting. It's nice to have 30 minutes or so a day that is not about work, home chores, study, not even about the usual diversions (food, TV, Twitter, texting, e-mail).

30 days left.

Wonder if I'll continue ..

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

never bored

My Dad would scold me (quite gently, as he was that type of parent) if I ever said, "I'm bored." Read, improve your mind, do something - he would say. He used to let me stay up late to watch The Old Grey Whistle Test and Clochemerle. He took me to the library every Saturday.

And why am I thinking about this today?

My job is never ever boring - even if a tad repetetive at times, it never bores me. And when I get home I can choose from a myriad things to do.

Never bored - maybe that's what'll be on my tombstone ;-)

Monday, March 14, 2011

still crazy after all these years

heard on radio today: got along without you before I met you, gonna get along without you now

then found this super version


struggling to keep up with work, not feel ill, do my Lent project etc etc

watch this space (if you want to)

Sunday, March 13, 2011


Had to pop up to the North of the country this weekend. Still, it was a break from cooking etc. and there certainly were brilliant views from the room – looking out over Southport sands. I should think that these are some of the most expansive sands in the country. It certainly looked a long way to the shore line.

The sun did come out a bit more after I took this photo

.... but I had a bit of trouble opening and closing the window so I didn’t keep messing about with it.

Later on, the view from Parbold Hill

Saturday, March 12, 2011


The view from my hotel
back to marking now...

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

a nice day

A nice day. Invited to my friend's daughter's school show at end of March. Boss said nice things about me publicly and privately. Home a bit late but hey! pancakes! oops ate them too quickly to take a pic - sorry ;-)

Monday, March 7, 2011

change what you can't accept

An idea from @keithschofield on Twitter Accept what you can't change. Change what you can't accept.

- made me think: perhaps this will be what I'll do for Lent. Sounds better than trying to give up chocolate - a non-starter anyway.

I think the second part might be more difficult than the first though

Can I change what I cannot accept? Within myself? Other?

First of all, what cannot I accept? The thing that I keep going on about: the part of me that finds it hard to deal with EGR people (extra grace required), the part that keeps wondering why things happen - they just do (see Job). So I need to change me?

or ..... change something that I really feel could be better?


anywhere you like

I was given a book today with the instruction to read a chapter a day so I just have. (The Purpose Driven Life, Rick Warren).

Interesting. It comes back to something I think I posted about quite some time ago: that we are not the centre of the universe and when we try to understand why something happened 'to' us it might be worth considering what the purpose was for the other person or people involved.

A long long time ago, when I was a very small child, my family moved to Cornwall. We had a car and were travelling along a country road, soon after moving there. My Dad stopped to ask a man walking along the roadside "where does this road go please?" The reply? "Anywhere you like m'dears, if you keep going long enough."

The thing is, it's not really our business what the purpose was for the other person. It's our business to find out where the road is taking us - and what we will do on the way.

soooo tired

Still really tired from those two late nights. But kind of buzzing as well! So much stuff in my head re work, life, the universe etc.!

And this is a picture from last summer - just reminds me what keeps me centred - the sea! 

Sunday, March 6, 2011

oh the places you'll go

Just bought Oh The Places You'll Go Dr Seuss

Spouse comments that my tastes in reading matter are somehwat eclectic! Sure!

This will be a great book for assemblies at school, especially alongside the photo of me with Daryl Dawkins (basketball player) that my son's OH took last eve. Daryl is approximately 2.5 feet taller than me I should think, so she did well to get us both in the frame.

But why the story to go with it? Well Daryl has sure used his talents to go to the hoop - and remained a lovely and charming man as far as I could tell. And I like to think I have used my talents as best I could (so far at least). And we don't always have things go our way, and it's not always easy to even see what our talents are.

As Dr Seuss puts it:
You'll come down from that Lurch with an unpleasant bump. And the chances are, then, that you'll be in a Slump. And when you're in a Slump, you're not in for much fun. Un-Slumping yourself is not easily done.

Times when we slump, it's hard to see what our talents are, it's easy enough to blame others as well. But there's almost always someone wiling to help - even if it's just something that makes you smile. So to all who have ever cheered me up when I've been in a Slump - Thank You!

Saturday, March 5, 2011


out late again, more basketball, brilliant match

en famille as well, nice

Tunbridge Wells again

Back to Tunbridge Wells this morning. This time I was leading a tutorial - it went well (in my opinion!). Had coffee then did a little shopping; now it's time for a nap on the sofa! Phew, can't keep the pace going nowadays.

I enjoy my tutoring. Sometimes people ask me why I do an extra job. I think my life would have a big gap without the tutoring work.

During my coffee break, I got out my notebook (as usual) and jotted down the activities that make me most contented with my lot ... days of intellectual stimulus were high on the list.

But I'm tired now.

Oh and Kent looked glorious again.

Friday, March 4, 2011

home late - Jenny kissed me

Home very late - astonishing at my age, 1 a.m. !! For some reason feeling a little nostalgic and sort of romantic (not exactly romantic, it's not the correct word). I love this poem and it's going round in my head with some memories. I know it's written by a man for a woman but I think the sentiment works the other way around as well.

Jenny Kissed Me by Leigh Hunt

Jenny kissed me when we met,
Jumping from the chair she sat in.
Time, you thief! who love to get
Sweets into your list, put that in.
Say I'm weary, say I'm sad;
Say that health and wealth have missed me;
Say I'm growing old, but add-
Jenny kissed me!

and a favourite song: I miss you like crazy Natalie Cole - trying to find a nice version for here

Thursday, March 3, 2011

24 hours later

I don't actually measure the time between posts but it probably is about 24 hours. I have enjoyed today. Started with some running around, then a tour, then e-mail catch up, a meeting and playground duty followed by more running around, more e-mails, and me leading a training session. Then more e-mails and some paper work, more meetings, topped off with grocery shopping and cooking supper (and eating it). You are saying - phew not a very interesting day to post about .... but isn't that the point? Some days are just plain 'OK' and that's pretty good ... some days.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

a good day aint got no bad

Just a brief pop into the blog today; a lovely quiet day at work and at home. These are days to treasure. Exciting days, full of opportunity and achievement: they are lovely, of course. Half hidden ideas and hopes, all wonderful. But much to be said for quiet contemplation - and the chance to make the most of it.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

In a bit of a reflective mood

My boss introduced me to a new phrase today (you may well already have come across it but was new to me): EGR people (Jim Jackson) - extra grace required. Lots of results on google search:

This idea really grabbed my imagination. Having also been reading Toxic Workplace (Kusy and Holloway), I thought it an interesting different viewpoint. I also compared with this quotation from Barton (Strengthening the Soul of Your Leadership) (p.23) "Behind my heroic image of myself I saw my tiresome perfectionism, my resentment of those who did not try hard as I did and my huge appetite for approval."

This is just a quick glimpse into my stream of consciousness (yet again) but I feel that this is an idea I'll be coming back to. I am constantly asking myself - if I find someone a little harder to deal with - how much of that is to do with me?

It's a pic from last summer: