Sunday 26 April 2020

Project 366 week 17

So this weeks tv viewing has consisted of The trouble with Maggie Cole, not to strenuous on the brain but entertaining enough. Finished rewatching Series 1 of Manifest. Also watched three films, TimeTrap - will be ninety minutes of my life I won't get back, Brassed Off which was  enjoyable and Toy Story 4 which was funny in points but not the best of the series but passed a part of the day.

We have had lovely weather all week, red skies both night and morning. The mornings were chilly enough to cause frost on the car, but had lovely afternoons. No rain again this week.

Hubby has spent a lot of this week in the garden as well doing all sorts while I sit with my feet up and knit.

Have seen the grandchildren on and off and Minky reminded me I can't come in as they are on lock down. but I can come in when it is over.


A day at work and a walk with the dog after tea. This was the only picture I took, this one is in  NHS heath care assistant colours, this one went to a colleague at work. I know have four domestic staff dolls done three of which are hopefully going to raise some money for the village food bank, my way of doing my bit for the village. Leaving it up to the leaders of the group as to how they achieve this. The fourth one I am hoping will go into one food bank package that is given to somebody in need as an extra to cheer them up. Not worth anything financially but a unique bit of history as each one is different as I have only made six of them so far so fairly exclusive.


I have run out of three items that should have been delivered with my last repeat prescription. Went to pick them up, pharmacy say they were not ordered, doctors and my online account say they were.So had to get another prescription from the GP so while we were waiting on it being signed, was to allow two hours, so we went a walk along the river.

Spotted a fisherman, first of the year.



Another day knitting, watching tv and walking the dog.

I planted these back in January and eventually they have flowered.


I had sent a parcel to my sister, but put the wrong house number on it, I put 36 instead of 35, the rest was correct, so it came back to us today....surely the postman would know the name and stick it through the correct door.

A walk down the road to the woods today. They have been out ploughing the fields. Sadly the right of way goes through here from the top of the hill but nearly impossible to walk down as the ground is that dry you just sink into it and kick up masses of dirt, not good for the eyes the lungs or the dog.

Joined in with a Zoom chat with the workers and volunteers from the active travel hub that I do the cycling with. Found out that there had been an email to NHS staff offering them use of a bike while this crisis is on, shame I don't get that email as I would love to have had a bike to use while I have so much time on my hands. Sadly they are all away and there is a waiting list......hey ho such is life.

But is anyone has a ebike to spare they are not using while on lockdown I will happily exercise it for you until you need it again.


Wandered into town to pick up hubby's prescription, walk the dog and do some shopping for me DD1 and a neighbour while I was out anyway. Neighbour and I were both looking for fence paint but they had none left. While we got out of the car I locked it as per usual and then thought, would swear I put the keys in the side pocket of the rucksack. When we got back to near the car I could not find them anywhere, emptied everything out the bag and shook it upside down, still no keys. Turns out they had missed the bag but luckily for us some very honest person had found them and put them at the wall a few feet away from where the car was parked and nobody else had picked them up and my car was still in one piece. Relieved is an understatement.

I did pop into the big Iceland as I just had to try the black jack ice lollies. I was not at all impressed with them, tasted nothing like black jacks and were ice cream not ice lolly. I thought they would be water ice lollies like the twister ones.


Spent the morning in the kitchen making soup and tea for tonight and tomorrow. Walked the dog in the evening.

This was me experimenting with some knitting. Toyed with the idea of making seven of the jelly babies, one in each colour of the rainbow, but last minute decided to try this instead. Made the smaller one first and then thinking that the NHS is linked with a rainbow now I added NHS and the year to the bigger one. A historic memento of this period in time. Going to make one for each of the grandchildren as a reminder of this time. They may evolve along the way. Need to change the blue of the NHS to something a bit darker.


A work day and home to be lazy.

This sign is sat near the hospital roundabout.

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Saturday 18 April 2020

Project 366 week 16

Apologies, I have not had time to comment on last weeks post's but will play catch up this week. This week like the last few has flown by far to quickly.


DD3 messaged to say she had a present for me, so dropped by her doorstep on the way home from work. A big thanks to her FIL for making them, much appreciated.


Spent the morning searching for knitting patterns and hama bead designs for Dumbledore and Sirius Black for Bob's birthday on Friday. Handing over the making of the cake to Fifi but I am making the decorations for it, not taking the risk.

Made a pan of veg soup, did another load of washing and got it all hung out then went for our daily walk down the woods. Stopped and took this picture of Spud on the way past.

Home and spent four hours on and off making two of the hama bead designs.


Another few hours making two more design and ironed them all then made a start on the crochet project. Stupid amount of time it takes to google the designs that you want. I would have preferred a knitting pattern to a crochet but no luck.I struggle with crochet and it takes a lot more concentration than knitting does.  I know he is getting a bit old for "knitted toys" but I am hoping he will hold onto it as something grandma put lots of love into making.

My step count has suffered today but crafting for Friday is more important. These took me about 6 hrs. May have been easier had all my beads been in their own colour but I have two mixed tubs and you need to just root for the right colour.


Half hour on the bike before breakfast. Watched the last two ever episodes of Criminal Minds. Fifteen series over fifteen years. Loved the show and all the births, deaths and marriages as well as watching the characters develop. Really weird if you go back and start watching again from Series one as it seems so out dated.

 More crocheting while listening to audiobooks. Now currently listening to The Silent House as I find it impossible to watch tv while I am doing  hama  or crocheting.

Enjoying nature while out, a pattern on the tree where the bark has come off.


A large number of hours crocheting again. This Dumbledore is taking a lot longer than I expected it to. A walk down the woods with the dog. Today they were ploughing the field that has the right of way going down it. Annoying but I guess as everybody walks on it it will flatten down again.

Nipped to the shops for a few bits for me and fruit and pull ups for DD1

Had some eggs that were getting past their best, three of the twelve floated so I decided to make quiche for tea, fried off some peppers, leeks and tomatoes along with chopped up bacon that needed using up as well. made some small ones as was to much mixture just for just one big one, they will do work at the weekend. Also made two cakes while I still have flour. One fruit and banana and one coconut. Will need to add eggs to the shopping list for when I nest go.

How amazing is Captain Tom, the man is a legend.


Bobs birthday, fourteen years old....thank you to everybody that sent a card, added an extra dimension to his day.  Finished sewing together Dumbledore and sealed it inside a poly bag where it will need to stay for three days so he knows it will be safe. and took it down with his other stuff.  We will still have a day out at some point.

Dinky decided she was not being in the picture and you can see her white top behind the broom as she disappears off to play in the top garden.

Thank you Fifi for this photograph.


This picture was taken yesterday but thought I would share Dumbledore.Could not get his half glasses to look right so left him without any.

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Saturday 11 April 2020

Project 366 week 15

Been nice this week seeing some of the survivors of covid 19 on the television. Hopefully their stories just might tip the balance and stop a few more people from going out more than they need to.
The mass burials in America seem so barbaric, but if it is only way to do it then I guess it has to be done.

The police have been seen round the village quite a bit stopping people and asking them where they are going.

Another week gone by so quick, though some days we have eaten tea at 6ish instead of our more usual 7ish. Means by nine it is feeling like past bedtime.

The village now has our own food bank thanks to the hard work and organisation of the covid 19 group. Contributions have been donated by most of the groups in the village as well as private donations and outside agencies.Some people in the village know where to tap into, great for the village for these people to be on board.  Amazing how caring people can be in times of a crisis.


A normal working day and home to do some cross stitching and then a bit of knitting.

Loved the sunrise this morning, such pretty colours.


More cross stitching while listening to my current audiobook. The Boy in The Photo.  Hubby was pressure washing the fence before starting to paint it.

Both went a walk with the dog down to what we call Lilly's wood, didn't see anybody other than a few farm workers in the distance

Started watching Locke and Key that somebody else mentioned last week. The Jury is out on it at the moment but only watched two episodes


A Facebook call with a friend in the morning that is going through a very tough time, Just being their for her, sadly nothing I can do to help her apart from being an ear. I can't go to her and be a shoulder to cry on or take her for a coffee.

Plenty more sewing. Finished watching series 2 of London Kills and caught up with The Nest while hubby was out in the garden. getting on with stuff.

A walk down the woods with the dog. Notice the difference in my breathing, managing back up the hill much easier than a few weeks ago.

 Home and made a cake that fell apart coming out of the tin. Still tasted yummy.


A trip to the shops just before 8am. Needed fruit and veg, tin foil and food bin bags.

A load of washing that got hung out, a walk round the village with the dog and some sewing in between times.

Started watching Liar series 2 on Netflix, a tad confusing because it keeps flashing back to "3 weeks ago" lots of times as well as 8 yrs ago etc.

Got a competition prize through the door, no longer doing decoupage but will find a good home for them at some point.


Still got a sore stomach, day three now, must have eaten something on Tuesday that did not agree with me and I am still suffering.

Didn't go anywhere or do overly much.

Knitted this wee doll the other night, took me about an hour to knit, took me another hour today to stuff and finish off. Finished watching Liar while hubby was doing bits in next door's garden.
 A lot of twists and turns and overall worth a watch.

This is an NHS domestic in uniform that I downloaded a knitting pattern for.  Hubby made her the visor. Was looking for shades of brown for her hair but I don't have brown wool, not a colour I have ever bought.


Posted a parcel, dropped by at DD1, picked up shopping for a villager while out. Took the dog a walk down the woods. I see the bluebells are starting to come out, just a few at the moment but another few weeks and it should look great.

 Home to make some brownies while the oven was on cooking tea.

Today's weather was very muggy warm while we were out walking, but we did have some heavy rain about 6 oclock.


The hyacinths bulbs I planted back in January are doing very well. Brightening up my living room window sill.

So a bland week here.

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Saturday 4 April 2020

Project 366 week 14

Been a horrible week news wise, a child dying alone because of the rules the NHS have to have in place, and then the funeral with no direct family who could attend...such a heart breaking time for any family. Doctors being forced to chose who lives and who dies.

The setting up of the arenas to double as hospitals really hits home how bad they think it will get, lets hope they are wrong

I have been pondering over making up two hospital grab bags in case things go wrong as there is no getting anything to you after you are admitted. I see you are being encouraged to make sure you have a phone charger with you as it will be the only means of being in contact with your family.

I see all the small local shops now have perspex barriers at the checkouts to help protect staff.

Despite everything the time still seems to be flying by.


My first Sunday shift back at work since September, only four hrs as used the last two hours of my holidays. Managing fine at work although it is getting chaotic with various changes put in place due to things changing daily. It is times like this I am glad I am not a Manager or a Supervisor.

Home via DD3's doorstep and a talk to her over her balcony. She had managed to get me two loaves when she got her own shopping.

Helped hubby out with some bits and pieces in the garden, got my uniforms washed and out on the washing line, and walked the dog in the evening. Hubby has filled in the rectangles he built with friend late last year and popped the pets trees on there. He also spent time creating a carrot patch which is part of the potato patch. Has put chip stones down in front of the middle shed as it floods every time it rains.


A morning walk with the dog to post Kim's parcel.
Made some rice pudding in the slow cooker to use up the last of my black bananas, bananas go quite nice in a rice pudding, give it a try before you say yuck.

Finished off another prem baby item, a dress this time.


A phone call to GP as I am still coughing with a drop in peak flow evenings and over night. He decided a course of steroids was the best course to take but said the prescription would take a few days to get through the system, but as I always have an emergency supply at home meant I could start the tablets I have and will pick the other ones up later on this week.

This then left me with the dilemma as we now have three levels at work for our own protection.  The red for clear off home and dont come back for twelve weeks. This states anybody taking steroids of more than twenty mg, my dose is 30, for short term should not be working. I had to clarify this with occ health as it does not say what short term translates as. Thankfully they came back and told me seven days or more so as I only have five days currently I can keep working. Last thing I need is another twelve weeks off work.

Took dog down the woods for a walk, must have seen six other people while we were out, some in the distance and three we passed with  more than 6 ft between us.You use to be able to go down here and never meet anybody but about the only place to go without a car from here so it is getting busier.

Doing more miles on my exercise bike and some cross stitching.  Started watching What Remains on BBCi player last night and finished it this afternoon, only four episodes in it with lots of red herrings and twists and turns. An enjoyable watch. Big issue is so much on there does not have the subtitles on it despite the programmes being shown with them, and hubby always uses subtitles so watching some of these programmes by myself.

When a decomposed body is discovered in a loft, Detective Len Harper begins to question the residents of the flats. Who was she and why had nobody noticed she'd disappeared?

Had a Facebook call from Ziggy who showed me her new puppy and her new bedroom. Quite difficult to see when you get the camera about an inch off what she is showing you but was nice to see her and hear her voice.


1st April, my blog turns ten on Sunday, so did a daft April Fool giveaway, that really is not such a daft prize currently. You can enter here.

Was going to leave shopping till the end of the week or start of next week but by then I will be more at risk due to the steroids. So decided to go today before they kick in too much.
Was going to do a freezer shop as well but managed to get mince, chicken and lots of reduce price sausages in Sainsbury. Still needing to queue round the block but moved in quite quickly. You no longer pick your trolley up from outside as they are steam sterilising them and handing them to customers. I had gloves on regardless.

A walk round the block with the dog. Home for a sleep as I was knackered. Not sure if it is the lack of sleep and a sore throat from coughing but just do not feel right. With two days of steroids in me I should be buzzing.

Had food in the fridge but could not be bothered cooking, was 7pm before I realised what the time was. So we toast and the other half of last nights tin of spaghetti.

My total mileage for the #walk1000miles as of Tuesday night now sits at 458.11 miles. Since the lockdown a lot of this is made up of exercise bike miles. Just over 160 miles last month. Nearly half way to the 1000.


Needed to tackle the fresh meat I had bought. The sausages just got popped into the freezer still in their packets. The chicken got split into two, I chopped all of it into chunks, coated it all in egg and then half in seasoned flour and half in seasoned bread crumbs. Now in four bags in the freezer. Somehow this morning managed to break the spindle part on my food processor, not really complaining won it from another blog giveaway nearly seven years ago, but had masses of vegetable peeled by this point  so I borrowed one from my lovely  next door neighbour that has sat in her cupboard for a number of years unused.  I swapped it for a piping hot bowl of bacon, lentil, carrot and leek soup that I had made
I turned half the mince into meat loaf to do hubby some meals and the rest into mince and tatties for me. Added dough balls to the slow cooker for me for tonight.
Also used a bag of chicken drumsticks that I had, cooked them first, then used the stock with a pile of veg and potatoes to make chicken stew. Love the flavour of drumsticks but not a big lover of the hassle of picking the meat off the bone while still hot on the plate, way to much bother. So cooled them and them pulled the meat off and freezer that is well ready to appear another night. Freezer now well filled for any emergency, well apart from a power cut. Just feel forward planning is so much more economical that convenience foods but still convenient.

Here are the three trees for the pets.


Set up my second celebratory giveaway, this time for a set of 3D Pop Up plywood models designed to help keep the children busy on lockdown. Had hoped to have more giveaways running, ten for ten years would have been nice but the others I was offered were tickets for various events on over the Summer that will no longer be happening.

Still feeling yucky but nothing specific I can out my finger on.

Got a message yesterday from the BBC, they had picked up on a picture I had put on their Facebook page when they had asked what we had done with our time in isolation.,of the rug I shared last week,  and wanted to share it on the tv. They also shared the fact somebody else had commented on the same post that she was "struggling with being all alone" and that she "had never felt so unloved in all her life." Her husband was checking in on her when he could but that had been her only contact,   So me being me I had pm'd her for a while, we exchanged phone numbers and I have called her a few times. It is nice to be nice and I think we could all do with some kindness in the current climate.

video share with permission from Ian Griffiths from the BBC


This is the cross stitching I have picked up and restarted. Probably half of it already done. I have a plan for this once it is finished.

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Friday 3 April 2020

My second blog 10th Anniversary giveaway with Pop Up Designs

This is my third year of running competitions to celebrate the anniversary of my blog. This year seems a bit more special as I have now been running for ten years. This is also the third year that Pop Up Designs have been lovely enough to offer a prize for a giveaway. I first got involved with them as the grandchildren got me one of the card designs a few years back for Mothers Day. Something we still have as an ornament.

POP UP  products are designed and made by Andy Cox who started a small business in 2012 in order to raise funds to support two children a year (or more) through compassion UK.  This charity gives long term support  to children in the worlds poorest places
 They are currently working along side others in Guatemala.  The local children there do not have the luxury are children have, lock down or not we are still well off with running water and electricity. Pop Up Designs are helping with a feeding programmes as the government has closed all feeding centres. The teams are therefore trying to drop off food parcels.. quite a task for 7000 families a week!

So the prize on offer this years has been designed with the idea of keeping the children amused while in lock down. A home activity kit for youngsters  . It comes in two different age groups, a 5-8 age group and 8-14 .

Kit 1. Here is a kit of 12 A6 wooden gift cards unpackaged for your kids to have an exciting morning or afternoon of making. The idea came from an ex-pupil trapped at home, for isolation purposes, who wanted some models to keep the troops entertained. This is an easy to make kit of animals and birds! 

Kit 2
This is a more challenging kit of animals and birds plus one random bike to give your youngsters some tricky builds! Our favourite is the lobster, maybe the bike, but all are suitable for kids aged 8 to 12 ish… or big kids like me at nearly 60! 

Have to say I love the Populele currently on special as they only have a few left.

Why Populele we hear you ask. Well it is custom made by us here at Pop Up designs and uses Italian Poplar plywood in its construction…. so Populele seemed like a good name! This is a fantastic gift for the guitar/uke lover, imagine the thrill of making your own instrument easily! It will provide hours of fun playing and is light and easy to take with you wherever you go. Fully playable and supplied for you to build in a kit form. Full making instructions included, with tools, strings and all you need to make your very own 100% wooden Populele (concert sized Ukulele)
Not bad for £40, think of the satisfaction.

Ok anyway I digress.

So to enter the giveaway just fill in the gleam form below. Quick and easy and one winner with be randomly selected when the giveaway closes and they can choose Kit 1 or Kit 2.

If you have nephews, nieces, children or grandchildren I think these would make a fabulous Easter present instead of an egg, and no worries of it breaking in the post.

Win a Pop Up Designs home activity kit

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Life In A Break Down

Wednesday 1 April 2020

My blogs 10th anniversary giveaway

On Sunday the 5th of April my blog turns ten yrs old. In those  ten years we have added three SIL's and one DIL to the family mix, added seven more grandchildren to the original two that started the blog off. I have blogged about the three dogs, one at a time, and the many places we have been, the things we have done and the highs and lows of life.
My blog has included allergy free food, on it's ninth year of Project 365, lots of different craft activities that I have undertaken and I am currently doing year two of #Walk1000miles . A bloggers life may appear glamorous but that is just the edited details the public get to see and read about.

For the last few years I have done a series of giveaways by way of celebration. The plan was the same for this year but due to the current situation and the fragile state of the economy I currently only have this one lined up. I may add more as I go but no promises.

Well today is the first of April, and I have decided for today I am going to give away;

a pack of four toilet roll and a bag of pasta......seems kind of appropriate during the current crisis.

10th Anniversary giveaway
Life In A Break Down
SuperLucky Blog Giveaway Linky: the UK's biggest list of blog giveaways