Friday, 30 January 2009

All finished...

...and here they are.

Newtiles3 30Jan2009

Newtiles 30Jan2009

Beautiful!! The wall colours of cream and blue are changing...

All tiles are up...

...just the grouting to go! They look great already.

I've been busy though, amongst the conversation. My tiler is a Spurs season ticket holder, so you can imagine what's being said. I've listed some beads, like I said yesterday, not as many as I'd planned, but they're up.




blood orangesmall6

copper green6

ayers rock6

Checking on Charlton's site, we've lost not only a central defender for the season, but a forward too. Andy Gray is out with a stress fracture of the pelvis...I'm sure they'll be mixed feelings about that. We have signed two players on loan this morning. Darren Ward, a defender from Wolves and attacker Tresor Kandol from Leeds, both until 3 May. In in time for tomorrows game.

I did...

...I promise! I did work, though not for as long as I'd planned. I'll finish my cleaning and photographing today, while the tiles are going up. There's nothing worse then hanging over someone working in your house...just leave them to it, and make sure there are the continuous cups of tea or coffee, if needed.
So, today is filled with my work, and getting ready for going away with Mum next week. Tomorrow is a day out with my daughter in law, and maybe her Mum, to an interiors shop near Kings Lynn...Unique their site only shows a fraction of what these Aladdin's caves are like. You can barely walk between items, and you need to check behind and round one to see a whole lot more. I've been to two of the branches, but as each one has some different things, that's a must. They cater for all sorts of tastes, from Baroque through to New England, French country to thirties New York. As glammed up or as pared down as you like.
And if you're in the area...I recommend lunch at The Hare Arms, Stow Bardolph, busy but good.

Wednesday, 28 January 2009

And then...

Lunch was good, and company the saying goes. Unfortunately not all could make it, as someone they knew had died recently and the funeral was today.

I did have a little shopping spree after lunch, and got the house some treats. On a visit to Mum's on Sunday, I raided her cupboard and brought home the two button jars, which I'll spread all over the floor soon. I want to make myself some wire and button hearts, along with a willow heart and rose buds, which smell so sweet, from our own New England store, The Blueberry Store in town. Next door is Lottie Mutton...a shop to die in...(unfortunately no website)...and they had a sale of some of their I picked up a few samples. A person can't just ignore them, now can she! All topped off with a little bolster cushion, again a sale bargain, and some charity shop audio books for working to.

I also saw a second-hand rocking chair...ummmm...

My day complete...and the strict instructions...I must work tomorrow!!!

Yesterday... blog title was most apt.

A quick nip to a local, large out of town shopping centre, to look for a new dishwasher (my present one has got fed up of wet hands!) Then off down the motorway to visit my oldest friend...(we met at school). A wow greeted her, as it's the first time I've seen her since she has slimmed, and looks so good. I now have found an incentive to lose...but, that aside, we had a great day. I met her grand-daughter...a beautiful little girl of nine months, with dark hair and dark brown almond eyes, she's going to break hearts in a few years. Her husband and I have the same affliction...we support the same team, so after dinner we disappeared our separate ways to arrive at the same place. (I did persuade her to come to me next time...I promised to help with the lanes). Just mustn't leave it so long...

An evening match...and another wow! We won!! A local derby...very vocal supporters, a little angst between them, and a referee who should take lessons, put these in a pot and stir. A lively match ensued. I won't pick holes in things said after the game...though I doubt if what was said won't be meant today, any less then they were yesterday, but, that's the mark of that particular man. You wouldn't lose a bet against what's's habitual.

We have lost another defender, and for the rest of the season, that's a blow as Jon Fortune hasn't been back that long from injury, and makes a strong partnership with Mark Hudson. Maybe that'll be a transfer in that's being looked at this week. New signing Matthew Spring scored the winning goal, and the difference his energy gave us in midfield, along with an on form Nick Bailey could be seen by all. With those two playing well last night, it might be difficult for ZZ to get back in. It seems our on loan right back has been knocked on the same shin in the last three games, so whether Graeme Murty will be fit for Saturday's game against Burnley at Turf Moor, we can only wait to see...or maybe Mooty will get a game. I've heard say that Murty likes the club, and is happy here...we wonder if that could be made permanent, though his heart is in one place, we might make him an offer he'll like? I think to do that though, we'd have to stay in the Championship, as his home club look as though they're heading up out of it.

At least last nights win makes my lunch today more palatable, having sympathetic looks from three ManU (one my ex boss) and one West Ham supporter isn't good for the digestion.

Monday, 26 January 2009

A present...

...for the new decor.

my scales

My new kitchen scales.


...the paint is ordered.

The wall and woodwork paint was ordered on Saturday, and should be here tomorrow or Thursday...the wall paint is a strange yellow/green from
The Little Greene and the tiles will be on the wall Friday. I could do them myself, but this time someone else can do them for me...I'll stick with the painting, except for the of the men in my life can do that. Why have a husband and two adult sons and do it myself! I have to find some shelving too, something old and wooden that can be painted, or two scaffolding planks and make it myself.

I'm also planning to make a herb garden, not very large, but with the bits I like using. I have the design where I usually keep things like that, in my head. It won't take much to dig the patch of garden and lay the design out. Hopefully it'll stay nice this week to get that done, and at least prepared.

And on top of that we've got a game tomorrow evening, against our staunchest rivals...but, I'm trying not to think that far!

I've also given myself a shabby header...just something different.

Saturday, 24 January 2009

A little local...

I can't and wouldn't put political views here, there are other blogs and sites that can do that one, and at present most of us are in the financial turmoil that is covering the world. I'm sure we all have a view.

My local town is a small market town called Saffron Walden...Walden coming from Walled Town, originally called Chepyng meaning market, but changing it's name in the 16th century to Saffron as it became a centre growing saffron crocus'. It is also horticulturally famous for developing Chaters hollyhocks and carnations, but that's all in the past. It is known as a Quaker town, as the families Gibson, of Gibsons Bank...forerunners of Barclays, and the Fry's (Elizabeth Fry's family) came from here. It has one of the oldest purpose built town museums in the country, a restored Victorian garden, medieval houses with beautiful pargetting, ghost and murder stories...and on it's border is the stately house of Audley End. In all it's a tourists delight.

When we moved here it was a little sleepy, with the usual mix of local shops...gradually the smaller family run shops disappeared. We still have some individual shops, but these are mostly gift/homeware shops now, and I love them. There is an abundance of coffee, and charity shops. It, of course, along with other towns and cities lost it's Woolies just after the new year, and yesterday came the news that its largest independent shop, and in fact its largest shop had closed. A family run business with three branches, it closed for business Thursday...a sign of the times? A mix of the present climate and changes in the local demographics.

And how long had this company been trading? It opened in 1750...

Friday, 23 January 2009

Dropped through...

...the letter box today. An envelope from America containing two beautiful cards from Tracy Chong - Handmade Pop up cards.


This is Hummingbirds, and is as beautiful as it looks.

Thursday, 22 January 2009

I really have... to stop planning my days. It's not going to work!

Today I do have to visit my old workplace to deliver a silver chain, and I need some groceries. But, last night I saw the Andy Murray game advertised for this was said to be about 8:15am. My plan was to watch that and then make the journey. It was never going to happen. This morning they said the match should start at about 9:30...following the Venus Willliams game...they should have told the young Spanish lady Venus played, as she took it to three sets and won. Carla Suarez Navarro...from Gran Canaria...and a very good win too.

The A Murray v M Granollers (from Spain)...started at 11:00. The young Scot has taken the first set, and is looking at winning the second, so I might leave it to him...

I have been working whilst watching. I've photographed and listed some new beads...see right. Some pretty feminine colours ready for valentines. I'm a white tulip kind of person myself, not being keen on red roses...

I also had entertainment on my new feeder stick. Watching a squirrel try to work out how to climb or jump up to the food. He made the first level, but can't make it to the seed or nuts...but, you can see him trying to fathom it out. He shared his pickings with a pheasant, but chased the magpie away. The small birds were sitting on the top, and you could see their smirk.

Tuesday, 20 January 2009


...normality returned. Today I did get to the garage, and I did get the paint. I also got new rollers for the paint, some candles...more wild bird food, and two pots of hyacinths...I will photo when they're flowering.

I also got the call from the agent. Our viewer went on to another house after visiting me, and it was in the village she lived in as a girl. When she told me that yesterday, I knew she'd prefer that...and the call today confirmed it.

So, now my painting and tiling continue...I'm looking forward to the refreshed kitchen.

Oh..oops! I also separated my jewellery from my beads on Etsy...I now have two shops.

Most of the...

...CAFC blogs concentrate on the men's first team, but we didn't have a very successful few days with several teams. Our first team lost 4-1 to Sheffield Wednesday, our reserves lost 4-0 to Reading, and our womens team lost 0-6 to Birmingham City...but that was in the cup, and they're still doing fine in the league, and several sixteen year olds played. Other than that, it's very quiet.

It's early here, and I've dragged my poor overloaded laptop out again...while I watch/listen to the Australian Open. Lleyton Hewitt is playing against a seed...and the Australians have just woken's been unusually quiet.

So, what's life been up to? Yesterday was planned, a trip into town to buy white paint for the kitchen ceiling, and the garage to get my little clip replaced...but, when the morning arrived it was dull and wet, and I honestly didn't feel like making the trip, so decided to make beads. After putting bed linen in to wash, I left everything for "later", switched the kiln on and lit the torch...nearing the end of making my first set the phone rang. Now that could be one of two people...I'd already spoken to my mother, and phoned my daughter in law wishing her happy, it was either my husband or the estate agent, checking on last weeks conversation. Sally's voice came along the line..."I've got someone who wants to view", says she, "this morning!" Panic strikes as I think of the stripped beds, the layer of dust that was waiting for the afternoon...the cardboard that was on it's way to the recycling..."when's convenient?" "Give me an hour..." ever optimistic. "Would eleven be fine?" "Yes" I answer with a sigh. That would give me an hour and a half. She gives me the details and I start to fly about the house...beds made, and the phone thought...they've backed out! But, no...I have a second viewer wants to come at midday. Even better!

Then as she walks through the door, there I am in a clean and tidy house, changed out of my spattered work sweatshirt ready to show her around. Will she buy? I don't know. Will I hear? I think so, she's been let down herself and I don't think she's that selfish. Did I get more beads made? Nope. Nor did I get the paint or to the garage.

Saturday, 17 January 2009

I don't know...

...why I bothered.

Listening to a depressing afternoon's commentary again. Losing 4 - 1...a changed side, and now with Doncaster winning, we are seven points from the next club which is Southampton, who lost to Doncaster, and even further (eight points) from safety. I live within the areas of Histon, Cambridge and I could go and watch a winning team with each of them! But that's not how it works, is it?!

Our next game is away against Sheffield United in the cup, and league game...I don't want to even go there!

I listened to an interesting conversation at lunchtime on Radio 5. About the reason why so many of the teams in trouble at the bottom of the Championship are recently relegated teams from the Premier League. A reason given...because they lose a lot of their players, those who got them relegated once they have played in the top league, feel they should remain there, and then want to the fact that relegated teams lose tv money...etc. They have to start again and's a true comment, but we're way past that now.


...the poor laptop to it's ultimate. I usually use the PC in the office, but today I've dragged my old laptop into use. That's because I'm trying to do several things at the same time, and the office is in the wrong part of the house. I'd love a new laptop...but...ahh well.

I went to one of my favourite garden centres this morning...Van Hages near Ware, and came away with a bird feeder spike and have placed it near(ish) the sitting room french doors, with a shelter of a white flowered, evergreen honeysuckle the other side. At present I can see blue and great tits hanging from one part..a robin, hopping from place to place...a blackbird hanging around the base. They'll all vanish soon, as the wind is rising. I wonder if the squirrels will cope with it! Yesterday, I sat and watched a greater spotted woodpecker pecking away at one of the logs we've left around, with the blackbird and sparrows picking up the pieces he was throwing away. That's one reason I'm on the laptop, so I can see into the garden. I'm listening to CAFCTV for the commentary for the Sheffield Wednesday v Charlton game starting soon, and I'm trying to update this and Etsy...and read some of the blogs I enjoy.

I looked around the plant part of the centre, but I prefer dedicated nurseries for those. We've got some glorious ones locally.

800 years...

...and counting!

The closest city to home is Cambridge, and this year the university celebrates it's 800th birthday. Founded when students were thrown out of Oxford in 1209. Seventy five years later in 1284, the first college, Peterhouse, was founded by the Bishop of Ely, for the safety and peace of his monks. It's still there. It's newest college is Robinson, founded in 1979, and though architecturally modern, still beautiful for that. It seems strange that so many things are touched by the university, without people realising. Felixstowe port, is on ground owned by Trinity, a little restaurant in Kings Lynn is in the vaults which once held wine owned by Caius. Along with the graduates who passed through it's collective portals. As diverse as Charles Darwin, William Wordsworth, Peter Cook and Sacha Baron Cohen

Tonight a light show starts as part of the celebrations, some of the artwork coming from Quentin Blake...who read English at Downing College, and a Ringing in the Year.

For anyone interested here are some of the links...

800 Year Celebrations
Cambridge Colleges

On a personal note...I had a friend who gained a place at one of the colleges, but just before she was supposed to leave, her mother became very she stayed at home to nurse her. After her mother regained her health, she'd decided to become a nurse. She lived in South Wales, and this was the mid 1930's. So, she came to London and began her nursing studies at the Mile End Hospital...she met someone and they married, but she continued her nursing through the Blitz and the war...and anyone who knows that part of history knows how tough that was.

I didn't meet her until she was in her seventies, I'm sorry about that...she was one of the nicest, interesting and most intelligent people I've ever met. Totally selfishly, I'm kind of glad she didn't get to Cambridge...I wouldn't have met her then, and shared a brilliant friendship. Sometime I might tell some of her how she knew Cliff Richard...when he was Henry Webb...and knew Lord Steptoe when he was a boy.

And if you want a great day of shopping, or a few days has enough to keep you occupied, from small independent boutique style shops to large retailers. all, it's a beautiful city...just be cyclists aware! ;)

Thursday, 15 January 2009

New Arrivals...

...are now showing in my shop.

I put some time this week to start back on making lampwork spacers. I've listed them in my Etsy shop, and show some here... Also, a further set of pebbles. It's a style I like, and is fun making...watching the silver twist and melt in the flame of my torch.

Imperial Rome


School Ink

Bloody Mary

Coppered Red

Shadow Grove

Shiny Pebbles

1 - Imperial Rome
2 - Marmalade
3 - School Ink
4 - Bloody Mary
5 - Coppered Red
6 - Shadow Grove
7 - Shiny Pebbles

In and...


The loan system is winding up again. Charlton have loaned a player out to Millwall...Izale McLeod has gone on a loan to the end of the season, after recovering from a long time injury. It also seems we have loaned in Tom Soares (midfielder) from Stoke City. A one time player of CPFC...I wonder how that match will go in just over a weeks time!

Tuesday, 13 January 2009


...we won!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! was 0-1 in the cup, but it was against another Championship side...okay, a struggling one, but it's a win, and that particular monkey is now off our backs. The next step a win on Saturday against Sheffield Wednesday...

I so wanted to go. There was joy and celebrations at the end of the game, with the Charlton players going to our travelling support and throwing shirts into the crowd...

Okay trying... keep calm here!

We're having to play some of our youngsters, because of injuries and non playing loanees. So...five minutes(?) gone, and we scored! Or rather Darren Ambrose has...whatever happens, I hope that means those supporters who don't like him, leave him alone now. I didn't think he did too badly on Saturday...considering how we have been playing!

Wagstaff, Randolph and Wright all come in to team and Yussuff makes his squad debut...full match squad - Charlton: Randolph; Moutaouakil, Basey, Hudson, Fortune; Wagstaff, Wright, Bailey, Ambrose, Sam; Burton. With subs: Elliot, Youga, Holland, Yussuff, Shelvey, Todorov, Dickson.

Of course, this might be just too much for any of us!

All last week...

...we had a haw frost over snow, and by Friday I'd decided to take my camera into the garden and snap away. Below are some of my efforts


Part of the garden

Winter Jasmine

Winter Jasmine




Choisya (Mexican Orange Blossom)


Pheasants toes

Hidy Hole

Hiding Place

And then on Sunday looking out, this sunrise greeted me. (I just turn on my side and get this view)


So pretty I decided to pad downstairs and walk to the end of the front path for this...

Outside sunrise

No artificial lens' were used in the making of these photographs...I'm not that clever!

Friday, 9 January 2009

You saw... here first!

I was right, another Smertin! After agreeing a season long loan deal with...Fulham (trying to be nice there)...they recalled Bouazza last night to loan him immediately out again to Birmingham. Who are still in the Championship, and who obviously have more £ signs in their bank!

It's being reported that the FA and Premier League, are again investigating West Ham's dealings in the Tevez transfer, that runs alongside the fact they have already been told to pay Sheffield United £30m in a form of compensation. My grandparents were WH fans, and went to the White Horse final in football has changed. I do feel sorry for friends who could see this proud club disintegrate before their eyes.

Thursday, 8 January 2009

The Annual...

...Accounts, and they don't make pretty reading (but then neither did most of the "pinks" this morning), but I'm not as expert as others, so will leave it at that.

Dean Sinclair has been loaned out to Grimsby for a month...and it is being reported that McLeish (Birmingham City) is showing interest in Hameur Bouazza. Do I see signs of a Smertin repeat?

We're supposed to be playing Notts Forest on Saturday. It would always be a difficult game, with it being touted as the proverbial six-pointer, with them just outside the relegation zone and us glued to the base, but with a win against Man City last weekend, and the incentive of showing a new manager what they really can do as players...I wouldn't hold much for our chances. Guess what? It might be off! There is an inspection tomorrow (Friday) morning, as dropping temperatures have threatened the ground. If it is...will that be a let off, or just delaying the inevitable?

On a happier note, I got my car serviced free today, and it was at the dealers! I bought the new tiles for the kitchen...and picked up the paint tester pots.

Wednesday, 7 January 2009



During this year we have several special dates. My eldest grandson is ten on Sunday, my daughter in law is thirty a week later, a nephew is eighteen in April, my eldest son, and youngest son's partner are thirty on the same day in June(so the youngest is teasing them all!) and my Mum is eighty in November. To top that, my sister is fifty next year...and is already in panic mode!

We do miss any special wedding anniversaries, and I've not got any significant birthdays this year...yay!!

Of course, then we go into 2010, and it starts again!

Tuesday, 6 January 2009


...and ice!

I couldn't have been listening to the weather forecast very well on Sunday, because when I padded across the landing yesterday morning, and looked out the window, there stretched before me was a blanket of white, all crisp and even...and deep enough not to have a blade of grass peeping through. It's still here today, though not quite as deep and even, but still white...and still chill!

I babysat grandsons yesterday, as they had one of those school inset days.

To start, their central heating isn't working properly, and as the day was so cold, granny decided to take them to her house...but, she needed the local shop first, which is past her house, through two villages, and down a steep hill. Unfortunately they don't grit those roads, and have only just started to outside granny's house, as they've seen fit to give us a bus! But, travelling 6-8 mph, we made it...then came the long way home. November 2007, my land rover skidded on mud left on the road from harvesting beets, in the Fens, and I ended upside down in a ditch...that was after being careful, so now I'm ultra careful...and I had two grandsons in my car, so 6-8 fine with me! They enjoyed the ride, and sparkling snow...and the village shop. They also had fun watching the squirrel hanging upside down from the bird feeder, and the birds foraging away around the base.

In the afternoon we made the unanimous decision to go to the cinema...Madagascar-Escape 2 Africa...and if you haven't, then you have to see those apes! They give the penguins a run for their money! Granny then took them now I'm the wearer of a snug pair of suede, sheepskin lined boot/slippers...oh, and so warm today!

So today is my first "normal" day after the where did I put that teapot!

The first... signing.

It came today, when we signed Graeme Murty from Reading on a month's loan. Again an older player at thirty four, and again a right I take it that leaves Yassin out again! He played for Reading in the cup, so can't play for us against Norwich next week...oh whoopy do! He's also been injured for the first half of the that means we're getting him match fit for Reading...does it?

PP has said he's straight into the squad for the Notts Forest game. He also commented that this gave us more breathing space to see about bringing in some permanent signings...

We wait to see...but don't hold your breath too long!

Sunday, 4 January 2009

Now there's...

...a thing!

As predicted, tomorrow came...and another draw ensued. This means that our run of not winning extends to seventeen, we have a replay to get through...but, it also means we ARE in the hat today. Let's hope game nineteen and the number thirteen are lucky for us! Nineteen because we play Notts Forest (who beat Man City yesterday), this coming Saturday (game eighteen), and how they'll be rejuvenated by that win and their new manager...and thirteen, because we replay against Norwich on Tuesday the 13th, and we're ball number thirteen in the draw today. I'm hoping that eighteen will be lucky, I have reservations there though!

Yesterday was different, seeing the game from a different vantage point, still having the same kind of supporters around us, but at least these were a little more positive towards the team. I am concerned about whether the board have the want to keep Jonjo Shelvey, he's just so good and a brightness in the gloom covering the Valley. For those who don't know, he's our sixteen year old midfielder, and little used this season, but already you can see his understanding of the game. His influence yesterday was beyond his years, and he scored a cracker of a goal. I just hope they remember that being under seventeen he's not worth as much as after seventeen...and any monetary difficulties we're in could influence that decision. Maybe by then they'll like us again, or have sold us on...I mean, Ashbey has taken Newcastle off the market, West Ham have more problems then it might be worth new owners looking at! Like a £30m debt to Sheffield United, plus other financial decisions to make. Back to the team, it was good seeing Yassin Moutaouakil playing again, and a surprise to see Matt Holland as a central defender, but you couldn't ask for more industry and savvy from an older midfielder! There were positives, but we are letting ourselves down each time.

We are "promised" four signings in this transfer window. I wonder? Who and how? More loans?

Anyway, in the short I go shopping in Norwich next week? Decisions, decisions!

I also promise some new items being listed in my shop, and I'm thinking about separating my items out, maybe having one shop for the beads, and another for the jewellery...we'll see.

Friday, 2 January 2009


...never comes. Or that's how the saying goes. I know as sure as eggs is eggs tomorrow will come, and by this time tomorrow we'll know the outcome of the cup game. I'll know when the final whistle goes, as I've got the tickets tucked in my bag, for the game. As a cup game I had to buy them...even as a season ticket holder, but we've decided to try a different perspective of the game and view it from the upper north stand. We also thought there might be more people up there...I doubt if many of those who sit around us in the lower stand will have bothered. And then after tomorrow we have the joys of a week of waiting until the league comes back into swing, and can we beat a newly invigourated Notts Forest with their new manager...who knows. We've already lost three loanees, with Primus and Cranie going back to Portsmouth at the end of their loan period, and Gillespie being recalled by his club Sheffield United, the day before we played them. None of which gives us any money...and the general feeling is we have to sell before we there's a thought! Didn't we do that one or was it just my imagination? Didn't we sell a guy named D Bent, amongst others?

And back to the normal turn of life...Mum returns home tomorrow, being delivered on our way to the game. Life here returns to structured days...and thoughts of designs...well, for a month anyway!