Thursday, 30 December 2010
I'm not sad to say goodbye to 2010. It started with our belated honeymoon to Florida which was fabulous but is ending with the knowledge that things are definitely going to change in the next year and there will be periods of uncertainty. (When I'm in a position to let you know, I will tell you the reason why).
This year has been quite stressful for AJ and I. We finally sold AJ's flat after being on the market since the start of 2010. After 6 months we had an offer in which was less than we would have hoped, but had to accept as it was the only decent offer we had and needed to sell. After nearly 17 weeks after the offer, we finally exchanged contracts after much stress and anxiety and fighting between AJ and I. I never believed until now that selling a house is one of the most stressful things. It has totally put me off selling our house and moving and I am staying in our little house until the horrible memories have gone.
We unfortunately had two deaths in AJ's family - his cousin Gail and his Grandad Reg. Plus a friend of AJ's passed away too.
Two of our friends partners have been diagnosed with cancer and a colleague/friend of mine has been diagnosed with a brain tumour.
Even though it hasn't been a great year it has had its moments.
As mentioned AJ and I went to DisneyWorld in Florida for our belated honeymoon. We had two wonderful weeks and plan to go back again one day. We went to see Charley Boorman and the wonderfully funny Hairy Bikers at Wolves Civic. We went to see Michael Buble at the LG Arena in Birmingham. We went to Austria for a week at the end of June. I visited Liverpool (for a hen night). It was our friends Dave and Kim's wedding in Shrewsbury in August. We have had some nice days out shopping and we ended the year treating ourselves by having a meal in the new Jamie Oliver Italian restaurant that recently opened in Birmingham.
I'm not sure what 2011 will have in store for us. Nothing concrete is really on the horizon. We are going to see Peter Kay in London. I'm going on my first scrapbooking retreat in November in which I can't wait and all being well we will be visiting our friends Mandy and Ceal who are in Australia at the end of 2011. The rest of the year we will take it as it comes.
I don't set myself New Years resolutions as a rule. I do have a Wish List for the New Year.
1) Be more creative and take more time to do scrapbooking, cross stitch and card making, and also to develop my blog and post regularly
2) Live a more healthy lifestyle. Look at my diet, exercise more, take time to relax. Take more pride in my appearance and to look after my skin as neglected of late.
3) Make more time for friends. AJ and I have been abit insular of late and we need to socialise more.
4) Get myself and the house more organised and tidy. It is time to really declutter the house. (AJ may not like it, but we really need to chuck out a load of stuff)
5) Do more of the things that make me happy
6) Make time just for AJ and me.
I wish you and yours a Happy New Year and that 2011 will be a good year.
Good evening from Pickle Land. I hope to speak to you very soon
Love Lesley xx
Wednesday, 29 December 2010
I miss my Dad and Mom every day and I am sad that we can't celebrate for real. My Dad wouldn't have wanted the fuss but I would have bought a cake and either taken Dad out for a meal or cooked a lovely meal. I would have bought him his favourite malt whisky and possibly a nice glass as Dad loved glassware.
It has been nearly seven years since Dad passed away. The time has gone so quick. Today was a milestone I was dreading but I don't feel too bad surprisingly. Maybe because my Dad wouldn't want me to wallow in sadness. That today is about celebrating his life - not mouning his untimely passing.
So here is to my Dad Cliff. I love you and miss you and you are in my thoughts forever.
Your loving daughter Lesleyxx
Friday, 24 December 2010
Tuesday, 21 December 2010
Anyway, not sure if I will post again now until Christmas so I want to wish you all a Merry Christmas and hope to speak to you soon
Saturday, 11 December 2010
Things, you will be glad to know are on the up now. Christmas shopping has began and the presents bought so far have been wrapped. The Christmas tree is up and looks nice. I've still to make some Christmas cards but luckily they are for people I will see before Christmas. Those that I need to post will get shop bought I'm afraid. I'm on major catch up with Journal Your Christmas, but I've a week off at Christmas so will do then. Looking forward to having the break off work too as really could do with some time for myself.
I will promise to try and get back into the swing of things and share what I have been doing lately soon.
Good Evening from Pickle Land and hope to speak very soon
Sunday, 14 November 2010
Monday, 25 October 2010
Tuesday, 19 October 2010
Reg, I think was 85 and had lived a good but hard working life. He was a Commando in WW2 and saw things that no one should ever have to witness, and throughout his life he was a Master Butcher.
He married Jean and they had three children; Susan, Karen and my father in law Nigel. In the late 1970's they moved to Blackpool and his children and grandchildren all have the fondest of memories visiting them. A trip to Cleevely's still brings a smile and laughter to AJ and the rest of the family.
About 6 or 7 years ago, Reg and Jean returned back to the West Midlands in happy retirement until Jean's untimely passing in 2008. They had been married over 60 years. Now they are reunited.
Reg was a big, strong, handsome man in his time. (My FIL and husband both look like Reg- unfortunately I haven't a photo at hand to post). He was also proud and a real fighter- right up to the end.
I only knew Reg for a short time but I am previledged to have met him.
He will be missed by the family and will remain in our hearts for ever. Love you Grandad Reg xx
Tuesday, 12 October 2010
Sunday, 3 October 2010
Photograph taken 1st October 2010 - Lesley Guest
September 16th Got paid today
September 17th - Funny black mood
Having guests at the weekend has forced me to do the housework
September 18th - Internet
It is great to have guests over to visit, especially when they bring the most fantastic chocolate cake which was demolished before I had the chance to take a photograph. It was lovely to see Mand and Aimee
Tuesday, 28 September 2010
I haven't actually been enthused to do much lately and hence I' feel I haven't done anything to really share on this blog. I'm actually not feeling too guilty about this though, as I think most people have periods in their busy lives when they feel exactly the same, and I've had alot on my plate lately
However I do feel I can share the following
On the work front, both AJ and I are experiencing unsettling times. We both work for local government and impending central government cuts means that budgets will need to be cut and jobs may go as a consequence. Being as we both work in the same building, this doubles our risk of one or both of us being made redundant in the very near future. It is worrying for us both as currently we have two mortgages (we are in the process of selling AJ's flat) and two lots of bills. If one of us is made redundant we probably will just about manage, but if both of us loose our jobs, we will really struggle. We have already said we would take any job jus to make ends meet.
We are trying not to let it worry us, but it is hard not to, especially when the UK is still recovering from recession and good jobs are hard to find. We are both emotionally drained of late and the uncertainty is the worse thing. We have put things on hold - like booking the expensive exotic holiday we had planned for next July, getting a new car, moving house and even having children (not that we wanted them at this very moment anyway ha ha!!!).
We have decided to try and treat ourselves though, and still enjoy life as well as we can and continue to do the things we enjoy ( apart from the really expensive plans of course).
I've booked myself on a scrapbooking retreat in November 2011 with Sarahs Card Ltd ( I know it is 14 months away but it is great to have something to look forward to, and AJ said just go fo it!!!! plus I've nearly a year to pay it all off).
AJ will still be purchasing his season ticket for Aston Villa- leaves me free afternoons to scrap and craft
Even if we can't go on the expensive holiday next year, we still plan to have a few weekends away - London to see Peter Kay at the O2 Arena next April is already booked and paid for, and I'm hoping to take AJ to visit Liverpool and I wouldn't mind going somewhere near the seaside - possibly to Brighton and Hove to visit a cousin I haven't seen in a few years.
On the personal front, I have started a new college course. It is Photography for Beginners and it is only for 10 weeks, but I already know after just one week I'm going to love it. I've signed up to do it along with my brother - who would like to make a career out of photography. I just want to do it so at the end, I can hopefully take better photos for me to scrap and share on this blog. Most of all I just want to have fun with a hobby that I'm getting more of an interest in since I've been scrapbooking.
On the LSNED front, I haven't done any layouts- hence no pictures this post, but I've been keeping my notes up to date daily and will share my layouts and lessons learnt once I've made a start on the layouts. I'm planning to have a scrapbooking session this weekend so hopefully I'll be up to date by this Sunday.
In terms of the Book of Stories class by Big Picture Classes, I've been trying to think of stories I can turn into layouts. The daily e-mail triggers have been great at prompting memories which I can turn into journalling on my future layouts. I'm looking forward to the next lesson in a few days time to work on and to develop a better process of storing these memories and stories.
On the scrapbook/card front, I've only made two cards - for AJ's birthday- one from me and one from the cats (I know I'm sad- Ha ha ). Obviously I don't want to show until after his birthday in October as AJ reads this blog, but will show you after his birthday. I haven't done any layouts but hey ho - the supplies aren't going anywhere.
I apologise for this lengthy wordy post, but just wanted to keep you up to date as much as possible of what is going on in Pickle Land. I feel my lull is slowly clearing and I'll be back to my old self soon.
Please take care, and I hope to speak to you very soon
Love Lesley xx
Monday, 13 September 2010
Sunday, 12 September 2010
Lesson 1: It's only a piece of plastic and metal. At least you wasn't hurt
Lesson 2: It doesnt look much damage but it's going to cost the man/driver that bumped me £400 to fix as there is more damge to the boot than you can see
Lessons learnt today are
That my car really is only a piece of metal and plastic and that I shoule be grateful that AJ and I weren't hurt at all.
Last night a van driver ran into the back of me whilst I was pulling out of an island. The guy was very nice and apologised and admitted he just never saw me. Luckily for him it was his father's business's van so his father is going to pay for the repairs of the car wihout going through his insurance. It is going to cost him £400 as there is more damage than you can actually see and needs a new bumper and the boot needs to be rapaired as the bump lifted it and slightly crushed it. I was very cautious sorting this all out as was abit apprehensive about not going through the insurance but the guy has paid the garage upfront and I just need to take it in on 20th September.
That too many people think I should put a claim in for injuries caused by my bump last night - even though I suffered absolutely no injuries. Why has the world become a PUT A CLAIM IN society? I'm far too honest!!!
I can use my car still - the damage doesn't affect the drive - thank goodness
My father in law Nigel is in Salou after riding through France and Spain on his motorbike. He rang to wish me Happy Birthday- bless him!!
I have no confidence in my driving - not necessary a new thing I've learnt, but having the bump (even though NOT my fault) has dented my confidence even further
September 9th - Age 36
I had some lovely gifts from family and friends
Lessons learnt today:
That AJ bought me a purple/lilac bead to go on my Chamilia bracelet - I knew I was getting the bracelet as he needed to check my wrist size but I didn't know what bead he would choose. He picked the right one for me as lilac is one of my favourite colours and it symbolises our colour scheme at our wedding. He was looking for a wife bead but dont think there is one
As usual he picked a lovely Birthday card
That I had some lovely cards and gifts from family and friends for my birthday
That I am 36 years old today and I'm not particularly happy about it- for some reason I feel very old - doesn't help that my lovely husband is over 3 years younger than me
That I absolutely adore Starbucks and have missed going- haven't been in ages. Treated myself to a Caramel hot chocolate with cream and a Skinny Blueberry muffin- as if that is going to help when Ive had all that cream. It was also nice meeting my brother there - along with AJ of course
That it is great taking some time off from work and doing nothing in particular - even took a nap in afternoon to recharge batteries
That I have some exercises to do for Book of Stories course from Big Picture Scrapbooking
That the Thai red curry I ordered was hotter than I remembered it was from the last time I ordered it from the Chinese takeway. Very nice though
That my Thai curry wasn't as hot as the dish my brother chose. He only took a couple of mouthfuls and his eyes were watering and he was sweating buckets - very funny to see!!!
And it really is !!
Lessons learnt today
That I seem to go into bad moods very quickly these days and often for no real reason
I really do like to go to Solihull shopping - even though I don't like the drive along the motorway
That there is a shop in Touchwood called Fabulous which sells gorgeous jewellry. It sells Lola Rose jewellry and I just had to buy a Lola Rose necklace with my Birthday money. It is scrummy!!!! And Fabulous really is FAB!!
That pictures do trigger memories. Had a e-mail trigger from Karen Grunberg - Book of Stories and it brought up good memories of my Dad and his allotment
That a Shake Away maltesers milkshake has absolutely shed loads of calories so shall not be having another one of those for a long time
That you really can get your monies worth with a £6.99 all you can eat buffet from Pizza Hut
I can spend hours in John Lewis if given the chance
That the mobile tyre fitter that AJ used to sort out his puncture was very prompt and did an excellent job. Remember to put in the memory bank just in case we need to use again
11th September - Chick Flicks are Good for the Soul
Lessons learnt today:
That Chick Flicks are good for the Soul. Haven't watched a chick flick in ages
Learnt a little bit about Greece from Driving Aphrodite (chick flick). Makes me want to go to Greece
Sometimes I am comfortable with my own company. Other times not. Today was NOT!!
That I don't eat much on a Saturday when AJ goes to cricket. When I do it is really unhealthy food like the half a dozen chocolate brazils in the afternoon and a plate of chips with mayo for tea
I can watch TV for hours and not realise the passing of time. Why can't it go so fast at work?
I could watch the Hairy bikers forever. They are great fun and the food is good too. Chicken paprikash is fantastic
Over all this week has been a mixed bag and I've learnt alot. It hasn't exactly been a good week but it hasn't been a bad week either. I've a lot to be grateful for and alot of things to ponder on.
I've felt low and I've felt high. This is a typical week for me and through working on LSNED I've been looking at the world a little bit differently or trying to at least ( as my brother reminded me to the other day). I just need to remember to learn from this week the lessons and take them with me along this journey of life
Good Evening fom Pickle Land
Hope to speak to you soon
Love Lesley xxx
Sunday, 5 September 2010
Why paint your own toenails when you have a wonderful husband to paint them for you
4th September- Creative
I am more creative than I give myself credit for
5th September - Love
All you need is love
Lessons learnt today
All you need is love
My husband got me a lovely Boofle Anniversary card and "Anniversary" Willow Tree Figurine
That we have some lovely friends and family that have sent us cards and texts wishing us all the best. We even had a text all the way from Australia
That the weather today is the same as on our Wedding day last year
That I can sit through England v Pakistan 20/20 Cricket match whilst my husband who is the supposed cricket fan fell fast asleep
That each year, time gets quicker and quicker - it only feels like weeks ago that we got married
AJ and I are off for a meal later to celebrate our anniversary, so for now, Good Evening from Pickle Land and hope to speak to you soon
Love Lesley xx