Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Moving Along.

This week I have been very busy during the day, not getting home until late. Things around Mum and Dads are finally making progress that you can see. There is still a huge skip outside which is laden with all sorts including stuff that has never been in mum and dads house. Who can resist a skip going begging??The carpets and furniture have gone. The rooms are now mainly empty this work surface is waiting to go outside, you can see the black soot marks that don't shift!!
All the walls upstairs have been washed down, but they are still black and horrible looking. When the painters start they will have to do two coats of sealant before the start on the painting proper.
It looks like the bathroom is also a casualty so that will add to the delay. Still progress is now noticeable and I am hoping they will be in before Christmas.
I have also had another exciting occurrence, my recycling and ordinary bins have been emptied twice and I have not had to call the council once to make that happen. Its some sort of record, all records have to start somewhere and perhaps this is the start of mine!!
So the rest of the week is set up to be as busy, at the weekend I am going to make something with my cupcake beads, I just need inspiration!!!

Friday, September 24, 2010

The Weekend!!

Its that time of year again, Audtions were held last week for the next Christmas production at the Barn Theatre - The Snow Queen. Beth was keen to take part in this one so we went along to the auditions and she joined in with the reading.
She was in Pinocchio a couple of Christmas' ago and had great fun. It was very hard work with lots of shows in the run. This year there are fewer shows, which should make it easier. Any how we have just heard that she has secured the role of Ice Maiden, which we are very pleased with, it sounds like it should be a role that will have a fantastic costume and beautiful make up. We are so pleased for her!!
This weekend mum and dad have to start looking for furniture for their house. Things have moved on there, during the week their furniture has been removed and taken away by skip, all the rooms apart from the kitchen have been washed down in preparation for the painting. Carpets gone, its just about a shell now apart from the kitchen, which is still sealed off waiting for the removal by specialists as traces of asbestos have been found (from the Artex in the ceiling) It feels like things are really happening now. There have been a succession of trades men throughout the week, carpet estimator, man to replace the stair lift, company to do the painting and decorating, the double glazing man, a non stop run of people measuring up. Once the kitchen is out I will feel like we are really on the home straight!!!!

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Finished Cup Cakes.

I have now finished off a whole batch of beads, including some with flat icing and a few doughnuts. They are great for taking your mind off of things you can sit down do them and the next thing you know its three hours later. The next thing is what shall I make with them?  That could be another few evenings lost!!!
I need to think up some new designs!!
I like the dough nuts, but they are fiddly. These are real close up shots so if you look carefully you can see my fingers prints!! (these are not obvious in the flesh!!!)

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Beths Bracelet.

I am so impressed with how well Beth made this bracelet, she had practiced before, but she got down to it and in less than an hour and a half she made a really good job of it.
The beads are really pretty and after she finished it, she gave it to me. Thank you Beth xxxx

Sunday, September 19, 2010

The Tardis.

I have finally got around to taking a picture of our new garden feature, a Dr Who Tardis as modeled by Beth!! Its proving quite useful at the moment.
Today we went to Georgies birthday party which was at ArtShed in Ware. Beth and the other party goers made beautiful charm bracelets. It helped that Beth had done it before because it was quite hard to get the hang of. In the end she produced a really pretty bracelet with pretty glass crackle beads and glass stars.
I really think she has a knack for it.
I will have to photograph it for later in the week.
Tonight we went around to Mum and Dads with dad to feed the chickens. Laura and Beth took a look in to see how things are going. This is the bathroom, no real physical damage but look at the smoke damage!! It looks like they have never cleaned.
The cleaning people have been in and started to box up the contents, they have also carried out test 'cleaning' patches all over the place, it really shows just how filthy everywhere is. I just wish it would move on quickly so they can get back in there.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Moving Along

This has been a week of action. At last things have started to happen at Mum and Dads, the cleaning company has arrived and they have started on the mammoth task of listing and boxing things up to take away to clean. Its unbelievable just what a huge job it is. That said it is happening. The kitchen has been sealed off after they identified a low risk from asbestos which is in the artex in the ceiling.
They start again Monday when they face the horrible job of removing the freezer which by now must contain food which is 20 days old and no longer frozen!!
Mum and Dad seem settled at the hotel so I hope that the repair of the house doesn't take forever. The next step is on Tuesday when the carpet man arrives to measure up and sort out what they want as a replacement.
Once they can get the kitchen out I think we will be able to see the end in sight.
Today I have finally finished all of my Cruise scrapping, Its take a whole scrapbook to do all the photos. I have again decided to do plain and simple, but I am happy with the outcome.
I have also made some more beads, this time using Sculpy which is like fimo but somehow seems easier to use. I will have to take some photos of them when I have decided what to do them.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010


Tonight I have been playing with my Fimo. I have had it for a while and I have kept 'meaning' to have a go with it, tonight I have spent a very pleasant few hours having a fiddle with it! I have been wanting to try and make my own cupcake beads. Tonight I have made a few 'proto types' I think I can refine them a bit more, but I think I can see another crafting addiction coming on.
They look huge in the photo, but they are around a centimetre tall and perhaps a little wider. I will bake them tomorrow and see how they turn out, then a lick of varnish and I'll see what they look like then.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

A Little bit of Greek!

Last night I have a very welcome evening out with my friend Karen, known in this house as 'Karen over the road' !!! Karen is passionate about Corfu, a place where she has been on holiday to for the past  30 years. When we decided to go out for a bite to eat and a catch up chat, we decided to go Greek.
This was a bit of a departure for me as I have never really 'done' much in the way of Greek food. On Karen's advice we tried the Meze. The waiter bought us lots of bowls of different foods and I tried stuff that I have never eaten before. For one, Aubergine, which was made into a very nice dish with a sauce and it very tasty. Number two was my all time hated vegetable, beetroot. I had tried it once as a kid and thought it tasted like eating mud. The one last night was pickled and in a sweet tasting sauce and was absolutely fine, in fact it tasted of the sauce and not really of beetroot. I did draw the line at calamari!!
It was nice to catch up again, we live so close but have to make the effort to go out or we are like ships that pass in the night!!!

Monday, September 13, 2010

I want one.

I have a lot of craft stuff and I find that I end up using the same stuff because its too much of a faff to get the other 'stuff' out. That and the fact that I can't find it when I want it. For years they have had this style of storage system in the States and now it has finally made it over here. This looks perfect it opens up to a whopping 108 inches wide it has LOADS of see through canvas drawers, shelves, a collapsible table and places to hang things. Best of all it packs away afterwards and looks like a wardrobe. It would be a huge improvement on what I have now and it might mean I have half a chance of actually using some of the stuff as I would be able to find it.
The down side and there always is one, is the price, £900. perhaps I need to wait a while until it comes down in price....
Happy Monday one and all!!

Saturday, September 11, 2010


Well this week has been a busy one, loads to do and sort out. Its been unsettling as we have had to move Mum and Dad to a new hotel and we have taken delivery of a shiny 'Portaloo' for the back garden!!
The first 5 nights were spent at one hotel, but then they run out of space and Mum and Dad weren't all that keen on the room. So we arranged for them to move into the Premier Inn at Stanborough. The staff there have been brilliant, nothing is too much trouble and they offer assistance and reassurance 24 hours a day! I must say that we have been very impressed with all they have done. The room is lovely and very spacious. They have even moved a couple of arm chairs in to make it more comfortable.
Mum and Dad are spending a good part of the day at our home and its quite a novelty to have dinner ready when I get home from work!!
The loss adjuster seems to be awfully slow and we have had trouble getting him to pay out and generally help out with the financial issues. This has put a huge amount of strain on all of us. It has meant that we are only able to book a week at a time which makes them feel as if they are likely to be homeless if no money comes through. This in turn has upset Mum in particular. Its been a tough week. Finally yesterday we have got an agreement from the loss adjuster to pay for the accommodation and out of pocket expenses, about time too. Its something that I will take up with the insurers once this is over, its unreasonable to expect people to manage for in excess of 12 days (which is what it will be on Monday) without ANY financial assistance, when all they had was the clothes they were wearing.
Yesterday we also heard that they had finally made arrangements for the cleaning company to come in next Monday and start the boxing up and throwing away of damaged stuff. I think once that starts we will see things start to move on. They estimate that the cleaning will take around a week. Fingers crossed.

I too have some cleaning that needs sorting out. I have been doing a fair bit of crafting in my spare time and my scrap booking table is covered in junk and I can't find anything!I need to spent some time trying to get that sorted out as well. I am pleased that I am finally onto scrapping my cruise photos, I feel like I am finally catching up.
My craft tote is stuffed full and completely full of junk, so that needs doing as well.Its much easier to work if its clean and clear.
Have a great weekend.

Saturday, September 04, 2010

Its been an eventful week.

The first of September started out a very nice day, one of those 'Indian Summer' days. It was my friends 40th birthday and we had spent some time preparing for it, all the usual ageist jokes, steradent and false teeth pots, hair nets, rollers and tena lady, a celebratory courgette I think you get my drift!!
So Far so good. At lunch time we decided to go out for a celebration bite to eat. Parked, noting that it was free for the first hour as long as you displayed a ticket, which we did. We promptly forgot all about the time limit. After lunch we headed for the the cars only to find that I had been awarded a parking ticket, just the £80, reduced to £40 if I paid up within the fortnight. My friend was parked in the next row, with the same time on her ticket and she did not get one, so I was victimised!! Bastards!!
I went back to work, I had just arrived at a meeting when I got a text from my other half to say that I should come home as there was a problem. The problem turned out to be a fire in my parents house. I was so shocked, I am not sure how I actually got home.
When I arrived the road was blocked off by three fire engines and there were loads of people out 'looking'
The fire was out, and I found out that Mum and Dad were out and had not arrived home as yet. I spoke to the fireman in charge and it seems that the fire had started in the kitchen, the hob was on very low and a washing basket had been left on the edge touching the ceramic hob. The fire had smoldered for around three hours before igniting and setting fire to the kitchen. The damage is huge.
The fire damage is confined to the kitchen, which was in a terrible state. The rest of the house is badly damaged by the smoke and water. What I had failed to understand before now is that the smoke is fatal. I knew in my head that it was, but seeing it close up I can see its lethal. Everything in the house is covered with a thick layer of sooty blackness, which covers everything and absolutely stinks.
Apart for the obvious distress of the whole incident, how do you replace a life time of memories? All those bits and pieces that you forget you have until you no longer have them.
So all you can do is concentrate on counting your blessings, any other afternoon they would have been at home in their armchairs enjoying and afternoon nap.They had a fire alarm, which was how the neighbours discovered the fire, but the firemen said that the fumes were lethal so, alarm or not they may never have woken up. So I subscribe to the theory that what doesn't kill you makes you stronger, so we are all a little bit stronger now.
The other 'strange ' thing is how fire works. Although the kitchen was severely damaged there were some things hardly touched. The bottles above were singed and melted but not destroyed. They were a couple of feet from the main fire.
Moving on we have got Mum and Dad in a hotel in town, so they are close. The insurance company (Direct Line) have been very good. They sent someone out the same night to start the assessment process. They have appointed a loss adjuster and a cleaning company. Both have now been and have explained how they will try and save all of the precious and sentimental things, but will have to dump the rest.
We have been told that to get the house livable again will be around 4 to 6 months, it needs a complete rewire, new central heating system, new kitchen and bathroom, new stair lift along with all of the rest of the contents.
I think things have started to sink in now and its been impossible to find anywhere rented for them to stay. We are hoping that the insurance company allows them to stay in hotel accommodation for the duration. We don't have any spare space here and Mum can't do the stairs to get to the bathroom, so we have ordered a 'portaloo' for the back garden, so she can spend the day around here and carry on with her hobbies. Dad can also stay and still look after his garden.
I am sure we will manage in the end.