Friday, 11 August 2017

Monthly Musings: June and July

Did you miss me? I know it's been two months since I blogged, how does time just vanish from you that quick. It's not often that you get two Monthly Musings in a row, is it?  In fact, it's not ever that you've had two Monthly Musings in a row. But I have been so busy, busy as meaning living under a rock. Remember in December when I said if I don't blog for such a l-o-n-g time it means that I am reading. 

Well over the last two months I have been doing? (In pictures)

Lots of reading books, here is just a selection. As most of them are from the library which I handed in!
If you can't tell from the t-shirts, I have successfully completed the Blaydon race (1hr 06mins 2sec) and Gateshead 10K (1hr 16mins 5secs) 
Which means I was allowed to have chocolate brownies!

I don't always drink coffee, I also drink tea and eat plenty of chocolate brownies of the last two months! Though it's fine because I run it off. 
Baking!!!!!!!!!!! And eating plenty of cake, if we had no cake in the house,  I will just make it!

Made scones pronounced to make it rhyme with cone! My church just like to rope me in doing things when I drink black coffee! First time, I went to church was to go to the coffee morning got roped in doing messy church. Second time drinking coffee got myself into toddler group. The last time was making 30 scones! This was my third batch the last two looks more like little rock cakes!!!!! Though they would be nice with a pot of tea, clotted cream and strawberry jam. 

Had plenty of pasta when my folks were out for a weekend break. Well I'm doing running, need all my carbohydrates I can get! The pasta I made that has four servings was buttnersquash mac 'n' cheese. 

Cooked myself potato and parsnip gratin with sausages. Though there are no parsnips as I don't like them!!

Tex mex version of mac 'n' cheese. I can live on mac 'n' cheese and chocolate brownies. Not a very good diet, I know.

The old pound coin with the new pound coin

I have rule when making myself hot beverages, which is to stay in the kitchen, as I keep making myself cup of teas in different stages. Entertained myself when the kettle was boiling to make a flower with a big battery as the middle bit of the flower than my hearing aids battery as the petals.

Every year, I make it my intention to taste all the summer specials in Costa. So here is one of them. I forget what it is! Have I told you have a goldfish memory?

I went to Jesmond Dene received a text from my friend to go the hoppings only to look after her bag. Nope!! I managed to get on the rides for free or half of the price. Have no idea how I managed to do that, though I'm still not keen on rides, I enjoyed it to an extent but I wasn't overall happy not like my friend who was just grinning the whole evening! I was grinning went I went home to do knitting! 

Hopefully, I would August wrap up on time! 

Sunday, 4 June 2017

Monthly musings: May

Before you start reading, grab a cuppa because it's going to be a l--o--n--g catch up.

Panorama of the main attractions by the quayside (millennium bridge, Baltic, Sage, River tyne and the River Tyne bridge)

However difficult like may seem, there is something you can do and succeed at. 

A month where I re-read books and one them just happened to be 'Theory of everything' and the quote I shared with you is from Stephen Hawking. That quote really spoke to me this month, when everything started crumbling down with my mental health things looked uncertain for my future. I year since my relative passed away. Missing my awesome friends who knows how to deal with me when upset.

I have had such a long reading slump it wasn't until recently where I can enjoy reading again maybe to much. I got on a bus to go home and read my book as I normally would do only finding myself back into town again and I'm sure I have left Newcastle, checked my phone to make sure I'm not going crazy. For once, I wasn't going crazy I have managed to read my book on a bus when it made the trip to Walbottle and back to town again.

Rodger (Teddy bear)  in different positions

At college, i'm doing my last project which is a project where I get to decide what to do and which bit of digital design I would like to do. No brainer, I chose to do photography and it really made me pick up my phone or my camera and start taking pictures. The panorama is one of the things we had to and so was multiplicity (picture above). My parents were out,( I thought) they came in the living room at the worst time possible. I was putting Rodger in a position, used the TV speaker as a tripod with all the props I would like to use dotted around the living room. In the kitchen I made cups of tea but forget about them. If I get myself in a rut, I put a the kettle on and make a cup of tea. Impatience, Rebecca doesn't stand still so I would do other things while the kettle boiling they were three cups of tea in the kitchen at different stages. One of them was a full cup of tea just a matter of drinking it hot. One of them had the tea bag in and just needs removing though has milk. Whereas the last cup only had the tea bag and milk. I thought, I could get away with that. Though nope. So I now have to stay in the kitchen and w-a-i-t and w-a-i-t. I am also very good at forgetting I have made a hot drink so I tend to drink my hot beverage cold. Though you can get ice coffee and tea which does taste good though having made a hot drink in order to drink it hot though only finding yourself to drink it cold. Does not taste good. Though I drink it anyhow!

I wonder if  Roger can continue knitting my cardigan for me!

Speaking about knitting. Time to show you how much progress I made with help from Roger!

Back of my cardigan

Either a left or a right sleeve

I knitted a side pair last month andI the other side this month
Some weeks I had the joy of going to two knitting clubs in one week. One on a Tuesday and one on a Saturday. You can tell, i'm into this knitting. Can't you?

This month, I had more time on my hands.  I unfortunately had no weeks of running. Don't look at me like that! I had two weeks of because of annoying dreaded shin splints. I now know why, because I have flat feet and most of my shoes got no arch support. Trying to find shoes that has arch support is proving to be difficult than it seems. I then had another week because of an ear infection. I just have a week to get to grips with running and at the end of the week I have Blaydon race. How bad can I be?

Finally my Dad a full weekend off! Which meant a family day out all three of us. Something that is unheard of as normally my Mum and Dad go out, I stay at home and read books do knitting. Maybe a bit of cleaning. I could have my cheesy chips but there weren't any cheesy chips they were chips that were loaded with your desired filling. I chose mexican chicken with a side of cheese! We would walk, five thousand more. We then decided to go for a long walk from Whitley bay to Tynemouth or that is what my folks said. I didn't it was long though it was raining so we did walk at a brisk pace to go Tynemouth. I had a very nice hot chocolate, I was cold. And i'm fussy with my tea and I'm trying to cut down on my caffeine intake.


May means two exams. One at the beginning which was English. I think that one went ok. The actual exam wasn't to bad there were things that could potentially trip me up and I just hope the examiner could read my writing it's so tiny but very intricate. I then had another exam at the end of the month which was Maths. Another exam to go and then that should mean no longer doing Maths and English.

It was my birthday this month, I even had a present from the exam board though only had it for 1hr and 45 minutes. Yep the Maths Exam. The next Maths exam is on the 8th June which is the election.

Birthday presents

Some of these are from my money last year, though most of you won't get to see what I got from the money you gave me. As I tend to get a bus if we are having a day out though the weather is to warm to wear a jacket but to cold just to get away from wearing a jumper. I decided to get a gilet (bodywarmer). As most of cardigans are worn out I decided to treat myself to FatFace cardigan it was in the sale. And I got some more money, I'm hoping to get a pair of shoes with some arch support or a Superdry hoodie!

When I was in Farnborough and was working I got so bad at buying books. My friends had to hold my hands when walking pass book shops therefore, I cannot get any books. Such bad friends. (Thanks Cherry and Crazy Rachel) I only went to Waterstones to ask about book clubs as no one reads books up here. I was at Waterstones I could have a look at the books, doesn't mean I have to buy it. Right? Though I stumbled over a book called 'Holding up the universe by Jennifer Niven' I couldn't resist it especially as one of the character as 'prosopagnosia' (face blind). I only bought one book and not a handful. So least I made progress!

I told my parents not to get me anything as they got me plenty. They pay for my running races, got my bike fixed and cleaning products. Even my Dad cleaned my bike for me. But nope they decided to get something little, I got some body shop things like showel gel and a book which I told my parents about!

A picture that I didn't take

Again it's been a month where I wasn't sure where i'm going. Am I going to the world of work? Or stay at college for another two years even three? Or listen to my folks and see where apprenticeship might lead? Decisions, decisions.

I was confused on all the different options and unsure if I could get funded for college. I decided to speak to a careers advisor. Though I decided to apply for an apprenticeship as I had a three years of college and think I should start earning some money and start on the career leader. I had an interview at the end of May and got accepted for childcare apprenticeship which starts on the 7th August.

When I was in Crawcrook, I explored the different cafes around my local area. I'm doing the same thing though in town. I met up with my friend for a cup of tea at the Qulliams Brothers it has over 60 choice of tea. It is like you are entering a living room-some areas in the cafe you sit on the cushions it's so comfy and it the cafe even serves carrot cake. It was a difficult choice to decide on a pot of tea to have and what cake to have. It has loads of flapjack. I am eager to go again.

There was an open day event at my college for childcare. I had about an hour to get something to eat for dinner as I had knitting club. So that meant one and only place. Mcdonald's. I'm in no rush to go again, next time I will go to Five guys. See i'm not all that posh!!!!!!!!

That's my tea and cake sorted out!

Oh and no! I didn't ate the whole lot!! I had a holiday and was bored on one day so I decided to bake a cake.  It was so sweet and so glad I got some clotted cream. Though I had a problem Mum and Dad aren't big cakes eaters. Not like me! I had no friends where I normally give them cake if I have too much. I decided to give 3/4 of it to my church,  that way it cannot get to waste and other people might enjoy it better. I found it nice but I could only have a slither as it was far to sweet. I will stick to cake with fruit or vegetable as it takes away the sweetness away plus it counts towards one of your 1 of you five a day. Or is seven now?

Wednesday, 10 May 2017

Mindful walk

Yep, I have definitely gone mad. Running has come to a standstill as I got shin splints and doing nothing isn't in my dictionary. My mind is playing tricks on me, cannot run otherwise I would risk of getting a bone fracture. So I had no choice either to let my mind control me or I control my mind.

See it makes perfect sense, really? Walking in a purpose of being mindful doesn't come very easily. I'm used to getting A to B very quickly. Sort of auto robert, getting to a place to buy things and back home. Or walking to my college at a brisk pace because I have a lesson. I never have time where I really walk just because it's a fun thing to do. Look over there, is a lovely flower. Or look over there, what a gorgeous bird is flying in the sky?

I like doing mindfulness as it brings you back to reality. Your mind cannot control you. You are only in control! I find it really helpful when I leave my phone at home and just bring myself and a camera. When my mind is taking over taking a photo brings me back to reality.

I might else well show you what I captured with my digital camera!

You also tell, I very much like flowers! Can't you?

Please excuse me while I do knitting for the rest of the evening.

Saturday, 6 May 2017

Monthly musings: April

All you need is love. But a little chocolate now and then doesn’t hurt.” - Charles M. Schulz

I'm writing this by being blinded by the sun, window open. I think the summer is here. I don't want to rejoice that much in case the sun goes away. 

My Mum did some calculations at the beginning of the Month, it been a year since we knew about Dad redundancy and a whole six months of living in Westerhope. (And still no house tour.) Where has that time gone? 

April has been weird month for me with my well being. I have been so overwhelmed thank goodness I had the Easter holidays when I did. To recover, by going off the grid. Though I did respond to messages that were deemed to be important. You know where everything gets to you and you cannot seem to run away and hide. Then sort things out.

Running progress

I can now run 8K, with a bit of walking-only because I have to the cross over the road. One day I even managed to run 14K. I ran 6K in the morning that I was intending to do before college just for my sanity. I then had a such a bad day at college, I ran another 8K in the evening  Even got a runner high as they call it. You can see i'm into this runner business, can't you? I had to run though one major problem 'hitting the wall.' I'm sure hitting an actual wall is less painful than hitting the wall while exercising. I only managed 5.5K in an hour run, where I could normal run 8K in an hour with a face pace but a 6k where I am comfortable.

April meant one thing for my running. I got PB (personal best) for the parkrun where you run 5km for run on Saturday morning. Just you and the stopwatch.  Not just once but twice in one month. That meant I could eat twice in 'Creames'. Believe it or not, I haven't. My first time I got a PB my Mum got me some yarn and I'm knitting myself a cardigan. The second time I got a PB, is a token to go to 'Creames' as my Dad wants to go. I will have to wait much longer.

I also got my Blaydon race number through the post. About a month to go and still have no idea about the song. It's all on in Geordie even the information booklet is. My Mum had to translate it for me!


I am now getting there with my work load. My well being plummet right down and college work left to the backseat where my emotions were everywhere it was even driving the vehicle. Though now my mind is and things are getting done, slowly but surely. That's for certain. I now have two projects on the go though they link to each other very well. So hopefully I can get them done before the marking is over. 

I have made a firm decision where my career is going. It's not photography. Computers and I don't get along and I much prefer working with young children and I think I am more academic than generating ideas. Especially creative ones. I'm not good at coming up with idea on my feet, I much prefer solitude time to myself analyze the idea. Maybe I over analyze things. Is that even a thing?

Personal life

The weather even allows me to put the washing outside to dry!
I didn't do things out of the ordinary, this Month. It could be summarized as knitting and running. Though my lovely calendar said, that I met up with two of my friends One on a bank holiday Monday where I met Clementine in Durham for a quick coffee and went for a short walk in the city. I didn't want to spend a lot of  time with my friend because she was visiting her relatives. I met another friend in  Newcastle town for a cup of a tea. Thanks for a lovey afternoons, Clementine and Alice! 

Mum and I had some 'Mum and Daughter time' One of them was to see 'beauty and the beast' which was so lovely. I just had 'be our guest' song in my head for the entire month. The other time was having a walk in town seeing all the historic buildings.Which meant one thing, after the walk we could get a well earned drink. Though my Mum don't ask me which pub to go to as I just go to the expensive ones. I don't mean to.

Speaking about drinks, I had my first alcoholic drink that I enjoyed though took me three hours to drink 'Kopparberg' even then it was half the bottle. I will just stick to appletiser!

Knitting progress with pictures

My left knitted sipper. Can you tell I like purple! There should be button where my finger is.

A bit of my knitted cardigan!

Friday, 5 May 2017

The Shack

My church that I attend has their own library so after having a cup of coffee, I was admiring the lovely books that was out. A lot of people told me that the shack was a good read. So I took that book out. I have just finished it this morning, I started it on the bank holiday Monday. As I got an exam today I had to leave my book downstairs otherwise I would not get my nine hours sleep otherwise I would finished it yesterday evening!

I enjoyed reading it, that's for sure. It brought me to tears. Though reading the shack for theology point of perspective I don't like it. It's very poor. From what I understand from the book, that bad things happens because God created a freewill. So it is our own fault things happen? Or is just life being chaotic and random? I notice in my life when bad things happen, I get closer to God than ever not by praying and resent it to God. having bad things happen in life make you stronger. Cliched as it sounds, I believe that.

If this book wasn't recommended by my church congregation, the chances are I would give up reading. The entire beginning of the book bored me. I had to make endless cups of tea just so I could read it. Though after I got through the beginning it changing from being boring very thrilling because there were interesting things going on, When it came together at the end, I did have a greater appreciation of the way plot elements came together, but most of the time thought certain components of the story weren't very well done.

I re-read one paragraph where the author uses nine similes! Two of them concern tears and are in the same sentence. Someone please sit this author down and explain that similes and metaphors are to open windows. We don't need an entire glass factory delivered to us every page. (You can tell I have an English exam, can't you?

Please hear me out with these three paragraphs.

Aside from the cursing, I couldn’t believe it when members of the Trinity began to appear to the main character as black women.  Don’t get me wrong, this isn’t about race, it is about gender and the representation of God.

Representing God the Father as any image or human is a serious error even in fiction. We are not to build an image in our minds of God--we cannot "reduce" Him to our level of comprehension as He is so far above us in all things. Jesus had to die a painful death to reconcile us as sinful humans to God the Father due to His holiness. Jesus is the bridge and mediator, we cannot approach God apart from Him, let alone misrepresent Him in this careless way.

Why represent God as a woman? The Bible makes it clear that the authority structure is for a man to be at the head. The Shack is more dangerous because it feeds society's attempts to undermine the biblical gender roles and provides direct support for the feminist agenda. Christians should be standing against cultural trends where they conflict with the Bible, not promoting and supporting them.

I was very annoyed and frustrated by the profanity and don’t think it's ever okay for a Christian to swear or use blasphemy in their books whether fiction or non-fiction

We need to remember that it is the broad way that leads to destruction and the narrow way to life. In the latter times, people will gather teachers that say what their itching ears want to hear and we are warned that many will be deceived. The popular way is not God's way. Simply put in this modification of a quotation from G. K. Chesterton,

Wrong is wrong even if everyone else is doing it. Right is right even if no one else is doing it

Sunday, 16 April 2017

Reflection on Easter Sunday

Sometimes it doesn’t work out as you expect.
Sometimes even though you know
the game is up,
even though you know
the inevitable outcome,
even sometimes when you have given up yourself…
…it doesn’t work out as you expect.

There are those days when the child,
who has been running away for years,
every week, without fail,

The day when the disabled child,
is finally accepted for who they are.
When the traveller,
for so long the outsider,
suddenly becomes a friend.

There are those days when,
in the face of despair,
for some unexpected and
incomprehensible reason,
our long dead hopes
are brought back to life.

There are those days
we suddenly realise
the stone has been moved…
… and the tomb is empty.

Saturday, 15 April 2017

Reflection on Holy Saturday

What was it like for the first disciples?
What was it like to live on that first Holy Saturday
when all hope is gone,
when all that we love is lost,
when God is dead?

We know the end of the story.
We know of resurrection,
so we do not wish to dwell in this dark place,
we want to rush on to Easter Sunday,
when life returns.

It is too hard to live on Holy Saturday,
to spend our time in the dark and conflicted places
of Golgotha and Gethsemane,
the place where despair has all the best answers
to our questions.

But what of the people who have no choice?
What of the people who always live on Holy Saturday.
The child beaten and abused at home
whose only hope is to run away?
The child living with alcohol misusing parents,
Trapped, too young, into adult responsibilities.
The disabled child,
never given the chance to join in.
The refugee child,
always a problem,
never simply a person.

What must it be like to live on Holy Saturday,
when we do not know how the story ends?

When hope is absent
who will be there to look after them?
Who will be there for the children
on their Holy Saturday?