31 August 2010

Answers to the quiz

  1. What was mined extensively in Cyprus in Roman times, which took its name from the country? Copper
  2. Name Jepser Christiensen's character in the James Bond films Casino Royale and Quantum of Solace? Mr White
  3. Hyacinthoides is the scientific name for what protected (in the UK) spring flowering plant? Bluebell
  4. The equal combination of green and blue light, and the C in CMYK color printing, are what? Cyan (the term cyan actually covers a range of blue-green colours depending on the context)
  5. What sea has the port city Arkhangelsk (Archangel in English) and Onega Bay? White Sea (an inlet of the Barents Sea, north west Russia, close to Finland)
  6. What is the longest river in South Africa? Orange River
  7. What comes from the seed of the tropical Theobroma cacao tree? Chocolate
  8. What semi-precious stone decorated Tutankhamun's burial mask, and is the colour of the American Robin's eggs? Turquoise
  9. What is normally green, but can be yellow too, after a French herbal liqueur, introduced by Carthusian Monks in the 1700s? Chartreuse (the liqueur and the colour both have a yellow variety - the green liqueur is coloured by the plant pigment Chlorophyll)
  10. What colour is Tyrian, a dye highly prized by the Romans? Purple (Tyrian purple dye was produced by the ancient Phoenicians of Tyre, now Lebanon, from the mucus of Mediterranean sea snails) 

These questions, and many others come from here  enjoy!

Don't feel too bad if you didn't get many right... I know I didn't

30 August 2010

Up with the Sunshine

and out with de boy... Murphy was being particularly well behaved this morning on the walk. We sometimes have a battle of wills over stopping and sitting at kerbsides but not today and he is finally learning to be a big dog and starting lifting his hind leg when peeing.. the things you forget about youngsters is that they don't always know how to do the adult things in life.

On our return, we put the washing out yesterday that wasn't quite dry and I settled down in front of the mountain of ironing after the mammoth session of washing. This moving lark isn't what it used to be, either that or I ended up with too much stuff and by that I mean clothes. Now the nights are drawing in, I want to freshen all those that have been in storage and check them over for future use.

We are also going to have a short break, in a few days so blogging will be a bit short on the ground but not to fret, I am taking my notebook with me for jotting down memories of the places I am going and with the camera fully charged the blog will be updated on my return. In the meantime I will leave you with some funnies to keep your mind off the fact of my absence.

28 August 2010

Saturday Satire - The Old Couple

A very old couple that have been married forever are sitting on the porch one night.

Suddenly, the old woman reaches over and smacks her husband,  knocking him off the porch and into the bushes. 

He crawls back up and asks, "What was that for?"

She says, "For having a little pecker."

He sits there quietly a moment, then smacks her, sending her off the  other side of the porch and into the bushes.

She crawls back and says, "What was that for?"

He says, "For knowing there was more than one size."

27 August 2010


I was flicking through the Daily Mail this morning, yes Dickiebo someone has to do it, when I came across an article on schooling in the 40s and 50s.

I remember the junior school well, must have been 1962/3. What I particularly remember is the milk that was put to 'warm' by the radiator for morning break which left it tasting unbelievable aweful with a faint cheesy taste. This has left me with a phobia about milk to the present day. If it isn't icy cold and fresh I cannot drink it.

I also remember well the PT lessons, when the boys stripped down to their vest and put on shorts. While we girls stripped down to our vests and navy blue sports knickers (complete with a little pocket for a hanky)... I never understood then why we also couldn't wear shorts like the boys but had to be singled out by wearing knickers. I felt self-conscious about it then, and never enjoyed the lessons ever.

Other than that, I have few physical mementos of those days, one of which has stayed with me for years and still travels with me across the world. That is a kapok stuffed felt red squirrel, that I made during one of the creative classes, I started to make a duck but when we left for Malaya it disappeared into the ether never to be seen again. The squirrel has long lost his hazelnut, but has stood the test of time. I keep him for his memories not his beauty.

What are your school memories? Good, bad, painful and joyful, enjoy them.

26 August 2010

A Quiz for Thursday - No Prizes tho :-(

1.What was mined extensively in Cyprus in Roman times, which took its name from the country?
2.Name Jepser Christiensen's character in the James Bond films Casino Royale and Quantum of Solace?
3.Hyacinthoides is the scientific name for what protected (in the UK) spring flowering plant?
4.The equal combination of green and blue light, and the C in CMYK color printing, are what?
5.What sea has the port city Arkhangelsk (Archangel in English) and Onega Bay?
6.What is the longest river in South Africa?
7.What comes from the seed of the tropical Theobroma cacao tree?
8.What semi-precious stone decorated Tutankhamun's burial mask, and is the colour of the American Robin's eggs?
9.What is normally green, but can be yellow too, after a French herbal liqueur, introduced by Carthusian Monks in the 1700s?
10.What colour is Tyrian, a dye highly prized by the Romans?

Answers tomorrow or Friday and where you can see more of these quizzes which I am looking at for work

25 August 2010

Couldn't resist this one - don't read it out loud to the kids

The wife approaches her husband wearing the exact same sexy little negligee she wore on their wedding night . 

She looks at her husband and asks, 'Honey, do you remember this?' 

He looks up at her and replies, 'Yes dear, I do, you wore that same negligee the night we were married.' 

'That's right.' she replied, 'And do you remember what you said to me that night?' 

He nods and says, 'Yes dear, I still remember.' 

'Well, what was it ?' 

He responds, 'Well honey, as I remember, I said, 'Ohhhhhhh, Baby, I'm going to suck the life out of those big tits and screw your brains out!'' 

She giggles and says, 'Yes, That was it . That was exactly what you said.And now it's 50 years later, I'm in the same negligee I wore that night.What do you have to say tonight?' 

Again, he looks up at her and looks her up and down and says, 'Mission Accomplished.'

24 August 2010

Summer is going

The fresher mornings, full of the hint of autumnal ripeness, and the cooler shorter evenings tell me that, and I am not sorry. I love the hot sunny days, but I have always preferred Autumn, the gentle slowing down of the pace as everything prepares to slumber through Winter. The dying back of the trees to reveal startling silhouettes in the skyline are fascinating, as are the hidden gems in the garden covered by shrubs and plants through the Summer. I won't look forward to Winters cold embrace, but it will come, doubtless it will come.

The first lot of blackberries are dehydrated, and I plan to make some flapjacks one evening to see what they will taste like, but first I need to do some apples as well and am hoping this weekend will see a glut of them coming on to the market places. I will admit to a fondness for the braeburn apple, I love the crunchiness and sweetness it provides and use it for eating as well as for cooking but beggars cannot be choosers and I will have to see what is around.

23 August 2010


Yesterday afternoon, after a short but good ride on the bikes down to Marazion where we had a cup of hot chocolate overlooking the Mount which looked quite forboding, I took Murphy blackberrying. We managed to collect 1.5Kg on our first expedition and I hope there will be time and weather permitting to get a few more before the season ends.

Murphy will pretty much eat anything, so I tried him with a blackberry about half way through the picking process and he wolfed it down. I have always said he is intelligent, next thing I knew he was helping himself to those ones on his level.

When I had gathered enough, we walked home, but Murphy decided that he found something so wonderfully smelly that he would roll in it.. so he was in disgrace by the time we reached home.

The blackberries are split into two portions, one is in the freezer in smaller packets ready for pies, crumbles etc. the others are in my dehydrator as I want to use these in flapjacks and cakes etc without having to use the fresh fruit.

21 August 2010

Saturday Satire - For a Tenner

A woman was sitting at a bar enjoying an after work cocktail with her girlfriends, when Steven, an exceptionally tall handsome, extremely sexy, middle aged man entered. He was so striking that the woman could not take her eyes off him. 

This seasoned yet playful heart-throb noticed her overly attentive stare and walked directly toward her (as any man would). Before she could offer her apologies for staring so rudely, he leaned over and whispered to her,"I'll do anything that you want me to, no matter how kinky, for £10. 

On one condition...."

Flabbergasted, but intrigued, the woman asked what the condition was.

The man replied," You have to tell me what to do in just three words."

The woman considered his proposition for a moment, and then took a £10 note from her purse, which she pressed into the man's hand along with her address.

She looked deeply and passionately into his eyes, barely concealing her anticipation and excitement, and slowly and meaningfully said..."

"Clean my house."

20 August 2010

The Sauna

Murphy and I headed out into the misty morning, just a little after 6.15am, I thought to start with it was going to be cold, wet and miserable as well as blowing a gale.

I stepped out into the warmest, moistest morning air I think I can honestly say I have ever known. The wind was strong enough to push you sideways (when Murphy wasn't pulling at you), and yet the misty air was thick and smelt ever so slightly of ozone. It wasn't really wet, because it wasn't raining, but equally it wasn't dry it was kind of like the same steam in a sauna.

Murphy enjoyed his run, only being intimidated by a large bushy tree which shook it's leaves at him and I had to fight hard to laugh out loud as he gives you a dirty look when you do laugh at him.

Sunday, is a bike day, I have promised myself that.. so tomorrow is housekeeping tasks and roast pork for dinner.

18 August 2010

St Ives to Penzance

Today I am travelling the roads, from Redruth to St Ives then on to Penzance before heading home. Luckily today is sunshine and clouds rather than the grey drizzly dreek day of yesterday.

Coming over the horizon, downhill, I could see St Michael's mount clearly in front of me before I had to head  back up into the town and then out to the Penwith Campus.

One of the perks of my job is that I get to see Cornwall, and be paid for doing it.. who could ask for more?

17 August 2010

My time is winding down

I am in the last few weeks of my current contract, then I am having a holiday in the South of France. Then I come back in a new job as Skills for Life tutor and alongside that (as it is only part-time) I am training three days a week in some of the libraries scattered around Cornwall. This takes me up to the same hours than I am working now which means I am fully employed until 10 Dec when this training ends and then I start looking for more work at that point in time again.

I also had been asked to work two days a week in my current employment, but unless the training doesn't occur this is unlikely to happen; I am quite sad about that as I enjoy working here and it is fun working with the team. However, I enjoy teaching, and need the hours to put towards my PGCE which I start when I get back from holiday.

We have a new addition to the household, Murphy the black labrador, who is just over 1 year old. He is entertaining, handsome and loves learning new tricks. I had missed the fun of being up at 6 in the morning out for walkies while still trying to wake up myself, but he keeps you on your toes. He can be a bit of a handful and is still learning to walk nicely on a lead without pulling like a train. Whoever had him before us didn't teach him any lead manners at all and we are having to teach him from scratch. He came with a pedigree, and a kennel club name of Almighty Ajax, but had always been known as Murphy and we didn't see the point of changing it because it does seem to suit him.

He snores like a train, rushes round the house like a lunatic when going out for a walk and is absolutely 100% ours. We have taken him swimming in the small beach area at Portreath and he loved it couldn't get him out of the water until we had a treat for him. I remember what it was like to have a puppy again, for even at a year old, he is still just a big puppy and he has managed to get into your heart mind and soul. He is going to kennels while we are away, the ones where he came from so we know he will be fine and yes he will miss us but it won't be forever.

16 August 2010

Watching Football

I had the dubious pleasure of watching two football games at the weekend, one on Saturday and one on Sunday. I was rather hoping to go out on the bikes on Sunday as the weather was set to be fair. However in the best laid plans of mice and men I dutifully accompanied SOH as he refereed his second match of the weekend.

I can't help wishing he was a rugby referee instead as although it was pleasant (when you could get out of the cold wind) it was not as interesting as a rugby match. What made up for it was having the very pleasant company of a nice young man called Murphy who insisted on playing with his toys and generally being very entertaining.

Sunday was a little warmer, less people watching and I took up my same place as thankfully when any balls went off the pitch they avoided my position. Once more I had Murphy to keep me company and after he devoured his chew, played chase the ball and had a number of treats he rolled over and had a belly scratch before gently snoring away.

Next week, no matter the weather, the bike is coming out. No more excuses, no more delays. Time to remember how to have fun.

14 August 2010

Saturday Satire - Just a Tap

A passenger in a taxi leaned over to ask the driver a question and gently tapped him on the shoulder to get his attention.

The driver screamed, lost control of the cab, nearly hit a bus, drove up over the curb and stopped just inches from a large plate glass window.

For a few moments everything was silent in the cab.

Then, the still shaking driver said, "Are you OK? I'm so sorry, but you scared the daylights out of me."

The badly shaken passenger apologized to the driver and said he didn't realize that a mere tap on the shoulder would startle the driver so badly.

The driver replied, "No, no, I'm the one who is sorry; it's entirely my fault. Today is my very first day driving a cab...
I've been driving a hearse for the past 25 years.

09 August 2010

The Cow, an Ant, and an Old Fart

A Cow, an Ant and an Old Fart are debating on who is the greatest of the three of them.

The Cow: I give 50 litres of milk every day and that's why I am the greatest!

The Ant: I work day and night, summer and winter, I can carry 52 times my own weight and that's why I am the greatest!

Why are you scrolling down? It's your turn to say something...

07 August 2010

Saturday Satire - The Funeral

A very prestigious cardiologist died and was given a very elaborate funeral by the hospital he worked for most of his life....

A huge heart... Covered in flowers stood behind the casket during the service as all the doctors from the hospital sat in awe.

Following the eulogy, the heart opened, and the casket rolled inside. The heart then closed, sealing the doctor in the beautiful heart forever.

At that point, one of the mourners just burst into laughter. When all eyes stared at him, he said, 'I am so sorry, I was just thinking of my own funeral. I'm a gynaecologist'.

06 August 2010

Points to Ponder

Let's put pensioners in jail, and the criminals in a nursing home. This way the seniors would have access to showers, hobbies and walks.

They would receive unlimited free prescriptions, dental and medical treatment, wheel chairs etc and they would receive money without paying it out.

They would have constant video monitoring so they could be helped instantly, if they fell or needed assistance.

Bedding would be changed twice a week, and all clothing would be ironed and returned to them. A guard would check on them every 20 minutes and bring their meals and snacks to them in their cell.

They would have family visits in a suite built for that purpose.

They would have access to a library, weights room, spiritual counselling, pool and further education.

Simple clothes, shoes, slippers, pyjamas and legal aid would be free on request.

Private secure rooms for all, with an exercise outdoor yard, with gardens.

Each senior would have a PC, a TV, radio and daily phone calls.

There would be a board of directors to hear complaints, and the guard would have a code of conduct that would be strictly adhered to.
The "criminals" would have cold food, be left all alone and unsupervised.

Lights off at 8pm, and showers once a week.

Live in a tiny room and pay £900 a month and have no hope of getting out.

Justice for all I say.

02 August 2010

Disaster Zone

Given the weather yesterday, a day we had set aside for going out on the bikes, which was grey dank and drizzly at Redruth we decided to haul everything out from under the stairs and have a tidy up while at the same time I baked a madeira cake (chocolate) and a victoria sponge cake.

Well what a disaster the two cakes turned out to be, first of all the sponge cake appeared to rise and then when nearly cooked sunk like the titanic after the iceberg. The texture wasn't right, it seemed too crumbly and too sticky so I suspect that the recipe is wrong. The madeira I had more hope for as I have made it successfully on a number of occasions, but not yesterday. I was gutted when it came out more like a ring cake with no middle, I don't even know whether it is edible or not.

I have not idea why this happened, the oven was defnitely warm enough, the eggs were only purchased last saturday and I can only wonder if the measuring scales were accurate.

Still, not to let them beat me I will keep trying and have at the moment in the cooker, a plain vanilla madeira and a pecan spice madeira. I will split the plain one when cooked and put buttercream inside it with some jam, the other I think should stand up for itself.

It is not a nice thing to do when you see the results of your failure, and it brought home to me just how much I hate failing at anything I do.. hmmm time to rethink my coping strategy I think.