Just me 'blurbing' about life..past, present & future…family, ancestry, books, sport, crafts…whatever pops into my head!

…where on earth…

…have I been since I was last here? Well I suppose I could have a think and recall where I have ‘actually’ been but instead I am going to just move forward and get blogging again! I am doing a Triathlon in July in an attempt to fight off my midlife crisis at the same time as raising funds for Help for Heroes so in between all my training sessions (what? when?) I will write about it, how difficult can that be…at this rate it will only be about 3 more posts before I am actually at the Triathlon! Wish me luck…..

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The Gallery #120 – ‘Old’

So….’old’…hmmmmmm, well that could be a great number of things, particularly in this house where I hoard everything.  I found an old T-shirt the other day which I got when I worked in a hostel in Venice Beach in the late ’80’s, still fits so that is reassuring I suppose!  I also have my old competition leotard from my Gymnastic days, not surprisingly, that doesn’t still fit!

…but this photo really is old and has long fascinated me as I am a real family history geek.  It’s of my Great Granny Bella, Isabella Sanderson, who was a very strict Presbyterian…she’s pictured here holding the family bible looking rather stern.  My Grandad is the boy in the middle but what really makes this photo is my Great Auntie Mary Findlay Thomson (left) who hopped on an Ocean Liner in 1912 when she was only 24 and headed to America by herself.  I still haven’t managed to track her down after her arrival at Ellis Island but have always thought how brave that was.  At 18 I jumped on a plane and flew to America by myself on the Camp America exchange but that seemed pretty easy in comparison to what she must’ve done.

…I named my first son Finlay having not known her existence at the time or the significance in  the ‘Findlay’ name in our family tree; I feel determined to keep searching for her!

Anyways, not the most creative interpretation of ‘old’ so have a look at Tara’s link on The Gallery at Sticky Fingers to see some more entries.

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…Way back when…!

I am a hoarder…in fact, that word probably doesn’t do myself justice…I am far bigger/better/worse/weird than a hoarder depending on whether you are for or against!

I just don’t throw anything away and still have insignificant items dating back to pre-Secondary school.  I love nothing better than to go up in the loft and just sit and go through old bags & boxes of ‘stuff’…a wee trip down memory lane can often turn into a ‘Gap year’ of sifting through old relics…it would probably bore anyone else to death apart from the people who were there at the time!

This is why I love and have decided to join in with her linky this week…her blog about Playground games took me back to my lovely village school where we had some very strange favourite games…would love to know if anyone else did these:

French Skipping: This was a more obvious one but I remember playing it for yonks…loved it..”in, out, in, off, jump, jump, off, hook feet under, over etc, I could complete it now I reckon.  It only required a length of elastic and started at your ankles then went to knees, thighsies & hipsies then back down to thinsies etc.  I will definitely be sharing this one with Little Miss Red when the time comes.

Bead Swapping: I’ve never heard of anyone else playing this outside of our school.  I had various old medicine bottles full of sequins, indian beads, moonstones and loads of random pretty buttons…you just made up your own bartering system of what you would swap for one of your finest semi-precious! Yes, of course, I stil have the box…will have to dig that out of Mum’s loft and post a pic, a beautiful wooden box made by my Dad and so much classier than some of my friends margarine tubs. When my Nana used to come over with her old necklaces, my sister & I used to sit in front of her putting our hands up for which jewel strings we wanted for our collection…weirdo’s!!!

Swing Socks: What was this all about?  Putting a tennis ball in a knee length sock, back to the wall and swinging it side to side so it hit the wall and bounced off, then lifting your leg to bounce it down there…rhyme went something like “What are you doing here, Sir…Catching Polar Bears, Sir…How many Polar Bears did you catch, Sir…1, 2, 3 etc.  The best bit was when your sock toe was so worn from it banging the brick wall that it eventually gave way and your tennis ball went wazzing across the playground.  When it suddenly became a ‘weapon, this was probably about the time of its’ demise!…shame really!

Join on for….?: Walking around the playground linking arms with whoever wanted to play whatever it was you were chanting…”join on for kiss chase, join on for kiss chase”…you never actually got around to playing Kiss Chase, it was all about creating the longest link!!  Oh what fun!!?

There were also loads of rhymes that I remember from ‘hand clap/slap’ rhyming games like…

“You’re the King & I’m the Queen, You’re the one that stole my ring and She walks with a wiggle and a wiggle and a wong, doing the Tennessee, Ping Pang Pong”

“Under the bram bush, down by the sea, sea, sea, True love for you my darling, true love for me, When we get married we’ll raise a family, so a boy for you, a girl for me, umtiddly um pum, pum pum”

“Om, pom, pey, pom-a-lay, pom-a-lassie, om pom pay, om pom pay, zaca-fari, zaca-fari, zaca-fari, poof poof”

“See see my baby, blah blah”, can’t remember more than that but remember the actions.

I’ve taught my 6 year old how to “1 potato, 2 potato, 3 potato, 4, 5 potato, 6 potato, 7 potato more, last spud’s out…” to see who takes the first turn at whatever….he loves it!

I have no idea what the boys were doing while we were doing this nonsense…probably looking at us saying “What the heck is this nonsense these weird girls are playing?”

Take a look at  a few more: that seemed to have survived!

PS….”faynights!”  I don’t even know if they were real words, certainly no idea how it would have been spelt but you would shout it with your fingers crossed which meant no one could ‘get’ you!

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Silent Sunday

Check out all the other pics at Love All Blogs


The Gallery: Week 96 – Extreme Close-up

…I realise this is not the ‘arty’ interpretation of ‘Extreme Close-up’ but this photo immediately sprung to mind when I saw this week’s prompt!  Sorry it’s blurry too but it was just funny when he caught sight of himself, he looks so surprised!!



Pop over to Tara Cain’s ‘Sticky Fingers’ Blog to see how close-up everyone else got!  Click here to see all the other entries




Listography: 5 reasons why I know I am a ………Headless Chicken!

I think this term now best describes my days, my months, my life; my poor attempt at being a mother to 3 children, wife to 1 long-suffering husband, friend to many, slave to the grindstone etc!


1.   There are laundry baskets in varying stages of the process littered around the house…consequently the drawers & wardrobes are empty and when anyone yells ‘where’s my school uniform’, shirt, pants etc, I direct them to the ‘blue stripey bag at the top of the stairs/washing line/fermenting PE kit bag!

2.   I have half finished jobs/projects all around the house; half a Granny square that I started in my eager moments of thinking I should learn to crochet (why?), a bag of compost, a zillion pots and many packets of seeds on the garden table in my ‘groundforce’ moment when I thought we should grow our own and a John Lewis bag of material gathering dust next to my Kirsty Alsopp’s Craft book (also gathering dust!) next to a curtain pole…I couldn’t decide whether  to make curtains or bunting on my new sewing machine (also gathering dust!!) so did neither so far!

3.   I regularly open the microwave to find my mug of tea which I hadn’t had time to drink before the school run so popped it in the microwave to reheat (yuk!) on my return and prompty forgot I had put it in there.

4.   I actually make it out of the door in time for the school run, complete with everyone in hats/gloves/shoes/coats (not necessarily their own), school bag, water bottle, nappy bag, phone, keys…seatbelt on, start the car, realise I am still in my pyjama trousers and slippers…pop back inside to dress appropriately and collect the child I forgot to put in the car the first time (no, I’m not joking!).

5.   The hallway has a plethora (hate that word) of plastic bags with who knows what in…they’re all destined for somewhere, borrowed baby bits back to a friend, charity shop offerings, hand-me-downs for friend who just had a new baby, Skaterboy’s eco project that should’ve been in school last week, overdue books for the library and many more…I just keep forgetting to put them in the car!

It’s a worry, this list of 5 is just a snippet of daily/weekly chaos, I really need to streamline my life but just don’t know where to start! I might just pop the kettle on to make a cuppa…then forget I ever did and pour myself a glass of wine!

To see more entries in this weeks listography, visit Kate Takes 5



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The Gallery: Week 95 – Colour

…fab prompt for this time of year, I love how the grey/white/grim colourless winter gets blown away by the vibrant lively colours of spring…I do feel like a hibernating hedgehog just waking up!


This azalea caught my eye in the local florists, not only for it’s sale price of £2 but it’s gorgeous colour and I’m not a real ‘pink’ person! I thought it would brighten up the garden…that is until my Dad reliably informed me that if I have an azalea that is in bloom now…then it is not a hardy one and can’t be put in the garden (how does he know such things?)…annoying, but still beautiful and now brightening up my kitchen!


Taken in Scotland last year, I love the warmth of this picture knowing that it wasn’t warm up there at all…if only it were taken by me (clever husband, *groan*).

See what the others have posted at The Gallery at Sticky Fingers. …there’s many impressive and interesting interpretations this week, as always!



…Food, Glorious Food!

Every week I have the same old dilemma of what to feed the family…Image

…3 meals a day, 7 days a week…and a variety of ages to accommodate…it stresses me no end and I just can’t seem to get a handle on it.  I go to the supermarket with a very limited list of things I can actually remember that we’ve run out of…most I don’t remember and  the rest of the things I buy are because I like them or they are on offer…rarely because I have thought of what I am cooking and they are part of the ingredients list!  No wonder our grocery budget is out the window and through the roof!

I must spend hours opening & closing the larder & fridge doors in the hope that inspiration will jump out at me…more usually I realise that there is not much you can make with microwave popcorn, a jar of hollandaise sauce & a pack of mini batternberg cakes!

So how glad was I to see this linky re: meal planning…clearly this was a sign..I must sign up and start to get a little organised when it comes to meals in our house!

OK, deep breath and jump in…off the top of my head (…and desperately trying to think of what is in the larder, fridge & freezer) I will cook the following this week:

Monday: Penne Bolognaise (slight cheat as have just done this meal & had home-cooked sauce in the freezer!)

Tuesday: Moroccan Chicken with couscous

Wednesday: Kedgeree

Thursday: Pasta Bake (no idea what this is just yet but will probably be whatever I can find in the fridge/larder)

Friday: Katsu curry

Looks easy enough…apart from that it doesn’t include lunches or alternatives for Little Miss Red who, at 10mths, is probably not quite up for Katsu Curry yet.  Oh well, it is only my first week so we’ll suck it and see, who knows, I may even take photos!

Cooking with love!

I’m linking this up to Meal Planning Monday over at At Home With Mrs. M.


The Gallery: Blogger Wedding Album

….yipppeeeeeeee, I will actually get to be in a Wedding Album…finally!  We had a ridiculous number of photographers (guests) at our wedding along with a professional Wedding photographer but still have no Wedding Album…or even a framed photo come to think of it!

We married in Feb 2005 after having got engaged in the previous October.  It wasn’t a great deal of time to plan a wedding but I really had no choice.  We both worked in MotorRacing, along with so many of our friends, with the season starting in March & ending in November we either had to do it before the season started or after it finished…I didn’t want to wait so long in case he changed his mind so opted for the earlier date.

Being a Wedding Planner it should’ve been easy really but planning your own is a different game altogether…it was comedy for the most part but I loved every minute of it…especially these funny bits…

…oh dear, the Groom got the Bride’s name wrong!!! There was an audible gasp from the guests…

he’s lucky I still said ‘yes’!

The beautiful confetti throwing & bubble blowing moment was lovely…

until someone (naming no names!!) got the bird seed out…got the Groom right in the eye…

The first dance to Paul Weller’s ‘You’re the best thing’ (we met at a Weller concert in Barcelona)…this was supposed to be a beautiful moment, a Dutch tradition started by friends where everyone holds ribbon ends and you end up entwined together in beautiful colourful ribbon….it didn’t quite trasnslate as the ribbons lengths were too short…

more like being lassooed is how ours was!

“Say something nice about the bride”…I hope I wasn’t too threatening!!

“Just Married”…

The End

Thanks to Tara Cain & A bloggers wedding album …go take a look at everyone else’s ‘meringues & vol au vents’!

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Silent Sunday

Silent Sunday mocha beanie mummy

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