[Keith Topping's Blog]
[Theatre Royal Bury St Edmunds]
Below are the 10 most recent journal entries recorded in the "DebW" journal:
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Incredibly Late Saturday Update.|
Almost midnight; The most spectacular thunderstorm in years has just finished and , having just collected The Boy who was stranded at the other end of the village at the washout which had been Carl's summer party on the green, I've realised that the entire village is in darkness with the sole exception of this house; incredibly we still have power!
Anyway just before the storm hit I finished the final assignment for my ILM coaching award, 5000 words in just under 6 hours; I'm knackered but triumphant , with that out of the way I can concentrate on my day job and heaven knows there's a lot of it to concentrate on!
I naughtily took the dressing off my broken finger in order to be able to use the one it was splinted to to type faster ( finger had a slight altercation with a horse's teeth last week) but I have now strapped it back up again and will behave.
Anyway; today passed in a whirlwind of shopping and housework and writing but tomorrow I will reap the benefits of my industry with a rare free day!
And I'm taking a half day off on Tuesday to go to London with Christy for a gig.
Life is hard work at the moment but it is also very sweet
After a week of blistering heat today is grey, cooler ( though still humid) and rainy.
We nipped into Bury so The Boy could get a haircut and I could get a new shower curtain and a new bulb for a kitchen light fitting; gosh it's a wild and exciting life!
And now, with the relative coolness of the day, I'm catching up with my housework; the garden is running wild but there are only brief pauses between downpours so we shall have to see if tomorrow is better.
And I got round to booking some more time off from work, a day for a gig in London, a long weekend for The Vampire Ball in Birmingham, a day to see a play in London, another gig and then a fortnight for Christmas; Some leave I must save as I'm very aware that my Mother and Stepfather both have cataract surgery scheduled and I need to be able to get over to France if required;
In the meantime I've been fretting about Chortle B Chortleby who had a mysterious lump suddenly appear on his back but it went almost as soon as it arrived; probably a hornet sting; and I've been making friends with a horse who has been put into a small fenced off area of the meadow, he's in good condition and his owner visits him daily but horses don't like to be alone, they are herd animals so twice a day I hop over the wall and go to chat with him and give him a hug.
Right, back to the housework; the new shower curtain is making the bathroom tiles look a bit grubby and it's WAY too hot for the steam cleaner so they shall be cleaned in the old fashioned way with white vinegar and elbow grease
Busy Busy Busy|
And it's hot and humid which is not a good combination with busy. Numfar is grouchy and I don't blame her, unlike me she can't take a cool shower and slip into a loose cotton frock; if I were wearing a fur coat I'd be grouchy too!
Fabulous thunder storm yesterday evening though; Lightning, hail, torrential rain and then brief but blessed coolness
At work I've just inherited another 53 courses and five tutors and am going to have to do the stompy foot thing until I get some more clerical support and senior practitioner support; there really is a limit to how much I can manage.. also some of the new courses are way out of my field of expertise, beauty therapy and massage. I've also got specialist cookery
(Vegan, Portuguese, Indian, Gluten Free), a project around combating pre- diabetes in the BME community and a range of sewing , dressmaking and tailoring courses and I'm more confident with those.
On top of this I'm teaching three E&D sessions and one Confidence course in the next week, trying to re-write a Managing Difficult Customers course for the library service and racing to write the final essays and assignments for my ILM coaching qualification, the submission deadline for which is July 31st; still, being a fully qualified coach will be good for the CV and I can hire myself out for day trips to Brighton ( joke). And I have a request in for DOLS ( Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards) and MCA ( Mental Capacity Act) courses both of which need refreshing before I can deliver them.
Oh and apparently I'm also now service lead for a three year project with Sport England; I'm supposed to train their volunteers, nice to know :) But it's a project around access to sport for young disabled people so it's a subject dear to my heart; not complaining about that one... much.
So yes, it's been a busy week.
On top of that I've been trying to keep up with the gardening and trying to get a daily routine going for housework and laundry to buy myself some downtime at weekends. Basically in addition to the usual tidying and bed making I'm trying to hoover round with the little Dyson every day, wash the hall floor, wash down all the kitchen surfaces, do any laundry and dust round on a daily basis before I settle down for the evening. So far it seems to be quite effective
In a minute I shall launch into the housework ( bathroom, hoover round with the big hoover, change the bedlinen, put laundry away, polish) pause to take The Boy some breakfast ( he's working this morning, I'm not the only one who is busy) and then go to Bury; the old freezer is already loaded into the car ready to take for recycling; I just hope I can find someone at the dump who can help me get it out of Flagrante and into the skip.
But I have also booked a hotel for a Jolly in September, arranged a day trip to London in July for a gig and another in November for another gig; all work and no play makes Deb a cranky girl.
And, since procrastination is the thief of time I'd best get going!
Last Day Of The Holidays.|
And it's sunny and lovely
I've had a real break, a trip to France, a few lovely days there visiting family, some time at home, a jolly to London with my sister.
I feel relaxed, refreshed and ready to return to the fray!
Also ready to return to the sensible eating routine which pretty much went to pot the minute I stepped off the ferry at Cherbourg!
I returned from France to find my ancient freezer dying on it's feet so I studied the small ads and yesterday drove to Hadleigh and returned £50 lighter in wallet but with a Swan half chest 199 litre capacity freezer in excellent condition; I've got it installed in the garage and transferred the contents of the old freezer... in the nick of time! I had to throw away some stuff from the bottom shelf of the old freezer and sit up till 12:15 last night waiting for a massive joint of pork which had been on the next shelf up and had just started to defrost, to finish roasting; This morning I carved the roast pork into four much smaller sections and froze three of them, the forth will be The Boy's dinner tonight; luckily the stuff on the top shelves was still firmly frozen so not too much wastage;
Slight problem is that the new freezer has a much bigger capacity than the old one and is less than half full so I shall have to assiduously bargain hunt over the next few weeks to fill it... they work much more efficiently when full and it's a while before I'll need the space for this years fruit and veg harvest. I must also make sure that everything which came from the old freezer is in one place so that I can use it up first.
OK, the sun shines, the garden beckons
Have a lovely Sunday!
Yesterday Christiana Raymond and I went on an end of the holidays jolly to London.. via a certain Joseph Seibel outlet store where we stocked up on lovely lovely shoes! I loved one pair so much that I wore them all day, it's not every shoemaker who can make a pair of red leather clogs which will keep your feet comfy straight out of the box and bounce you through a day in the big wicked city! We wandered and drank coffee from Granary Square in Kings Cross ( gentrified beyond belief) across and down to Oxford Street, then Covent Garden and Trafalgar Square where we saw the rehearsals for this weekend's West End Live shows.
Brilliant stuff! The casts of all the West End shows belting out the hits, Phantom, Miss Saigon, Les Mis and then a show called Forbidden Broadway who followed the full cast of Les Mis by doing a wicked and brilliant piss take of... les Mis
then back on the train; The perfect end to a week off.
Today I must find a freezer
Oh deep joy!
Back from France|
Beyond knackered but I had a wonderful time
I will catch up here and elsewhere when I've recuperated
The Usual Saturday blather!|
My usual Saturday morning update was delayed by a wave of thunderstorms as a result of which the house is now unnaturally clean because I'd got ahead with the cleaning yesterday evening but, trapped in the house by torrential rain and thunder and lightning, I cleaned some more.
I also went through my wardrobes and had a trying on session, working out what to take to France with me next week.
My clothing is an issue right now; I'm gradually getting back into shape but hormones have been unkind to me and I no longer have my usual flattish stomach; Most of my dresses are now too big, and those in the right size look all wrong because the stomach should be flat and it isn't; I simply don't own many skirts or trousers or jeans and tops and I like wearing dresses dammit!
I took the opportunity to remind myself that now is not the time to backslide on the regime by trying on my wedding dresses... surprisingly the registry office dress which was loose fitting cream silk almost fits me although the silk covered buttons down the side of the bodice were under considerable strain and the stomach was an issue :) The church dress is hilarious! I mean I know that it is very fitted and has a very small waist in proportion to the bust and hips and I know full well that I do not have a very small waist any more and so the zip was never going to zip but the fact remains that, disregarding the waist, it's at least two sizes too small on the back;
Obviously fitting back into it was never and is never going to be an option but I need to be a darned sight closer to that point than I am now.
I also need to talk to my physio and see if there are stomach muscle firming exercises which I can do.... a car crash and an unfortunate incident with a staircase and a washing machine
(don't ask) have left me with damaged discs at shoulder height and at lower back height, crunches are a no go but there must be something... or a corset ;
On the plus side jackets I haven't worn in a while now fit comfortably as do skirts and trousers two sizes down from my flobsome worst, I'm happier with my arms which are toning up nicely and, if I can sort the wretched stomach out, there are some really pretty frocks which I haven't worn in a while.
For France meanwhile I'm going to have to take some of the too big dresses and get out my needle and thread to pull shoulder straps up and bust seams in and necklines up but to leave some fabric to camouflage the gut; or stick to Empire Line, which is fine and I have some pretty Empire line frocks, but the problem is that they make me look the same width all the way down as my bust which ,since my bust is two sizes bigger than my hips and waist, (and stays that way no matter what those sizes are) is not the best look.
First world problems eh?
In other news I got out between storms and planted 24 Cinerarias and 24 African Marigolds; I also put the tubs of Geraniums which I'd overwintered successfully out and filled Granddad's planting trough with six lovely new scarlet Geraniums; soon I shall go and battle weeds for a while.
Numfar is playing otters on the carpet ( lying on her back with her legs curled up like an otter clutching a stone) CBC is AWOL, probably recovering from the language I used when he decided that I needed waking up at 5AM and that the best way to wake me up was to bounce the slumbering Numfar and start World War three!
Ollie's birthday party tomorrow.. five already! Then two days to work and I'm off to France.
And five days into that break I'll have finally used last years leave allowance and start on this years!
Happy Saturday All!
Thirty Years Ago|
June 2nd 1984 to be precise; A sunny, blustery day and one containing two weddings and a house move!
Wedding #1 was the official bit, me in a silk dress from Oxfam, an old straw boater with a blue ribbon, a blue belt with a butterfly buckle and, oh dear, electric blue high heeled shoes; the Boy in his only suit, nipping off to the registry office to get legal.
Then we picked up the keys to the new house ( the sale completed that morning), Rod and his best man moved the furniture in ( a job lot we'd bought at a house clearance sale for £50) and wired up the cooker and I went off back to my mother's house to prepare for Wedding #2 which was at Liston Church and was actually a blessing rather than a marriage as I was marrying a second hand man.
We'd decorated the church with garden flowers and made bouquets and button holes the night before and mum's house was set up for the buffet so I was able to take five and then get dressed in my finery (£15 wedding dress from Debenhams' sale, my sister's wedding petticoat and veil, my aunt's tiara, my grandmother's pearls.... hey, we were skint) but I did have a new white lace garter and a lovely pair of shoes (bought in the same sale as the electric blue high heels); I also forgot to take my watch off! The plain black leather strap looks a bit odd in the photos.
My aunt pinned my tiara and told me that I was marrying the wrong man ( she simply adored my first love and never quite forgave me for not marrying him) but wished me all the joy in the world, my brother drove me to church and my father met me at the gate... and cried and the rural dean got a bit mixed up in the service and narrowly avoided burying us instead of marrying us.
Ian took the pictures, another friend played the organ ( apparently whilst waiting for me to arrive he entertained the guests with a lively selection from Cats), the family all chipped in to make the buffet.
It was a wedding on the cheap but it was perfect.
After the reception we took our guests to Melford Fair for the evening ( we couldn't afford a party but the fair was much more fun anyway) and then The Boy and I walked to our new home, stuck my bouquet in a milk bottle on the draining board, collected the dog and went for a walk before sharing the only Champagne of the day, a bottle left for us by the estate agents.
We had no honeymoon, Sunday was spent getting the house sorted and on Monday we both went back to work... in my case to a new job because I'd been sacked on the Thursday, found a new job on the Friday and started it at 8AM on the Monday!
The photos are mingled joy and sorrow, too many people in them who are now with us only in fond memory but the happiness ( and breeziness) of that long ago June day shines through.
Of course marriage hasn't been unalloyed roses, it took 12 years before we could afford to both stop working two jobs and taking on a second hand man and an instant family of two young daughters had some challenges. When we finally got the honeymoon it was two days in France...the next holiday we took as a couple wasn't till 2003! But the joys outweigh the sorrows and we have been, and continue to be, very much in love and very happy.
In the wink of an eye three decades have flown by
We will never be financially rich but we now have two grown and gorgeous daughters, and three beautiful grandchildren and that makes us rich and blessed beyond all measure. I'll never regret marrying my beloved boy, he is my husband , my lover, my best friend.
( More wedding pics behind cutCollapse )
Oh C'mon... after thirty years I'm entitled to go a bit misty eyed and soppy :)
ETA; The rather lovely amethyst set in gold and on a fine gold chain which was The Boy's gift to me
Apparently we are going to Bury this morning; let joy be unconfined! Just glad that I set the laundry to wash overnight and had it out on the line before 7AM or I might be tetchy about losing a good chunk of a rare good drying day.
I also just whizzed round with the little Dyson and got another load of laundry in so the place is at least semi respectable.
Actually if The Boy is off on sooper Sekrit shopping ( hope he finds something nice in my favourite jewelers) it will give me a chance to go to the toy shop for Lego for Ollie's birthday and maybe for a mooch round the charity shops so I'm not whining.
And I have Monday off so losing a Saturday morning is nowt much in the scheme of things
I just gave in and put the fire on... much to Numfar's approval.
It's cold and blustery here with frequent downpours, so much for my plans for a weekend in the garden.
I Improved the shining hour by going onto ebay and bidding on a couple of dresses, one by East, one by Monsoon; I was tempted by another one of the East dress and bolero sets I like so much but the starting bid was higher than I usually pay and the postage was high too so I refrained. I also bought a chiffon maxi dress in a charity shop for a fiver on Friday mostly because the fabric reminded me of an old dress that I used to love; It was a size 14 ( I'm usually a 14 on the bottom and a 16-18 on top, like the prow of a ship!) and I intended to take the bodice off and make the dress into a skirt but to my surprise it fitted, and the under dress from one of my East sets will go under it well and render it decent.
I need to have a wardrobe sort out. Christy doesn't "do" dresses but when recovering from surgery she couldn't wear trousers or anything with a waistband so she bought several dresses on ebay ( mostly Monsoon) and has now given them to me. In short I have more than enough frocks but can't resist ebay bargains and will run out of wardrobe space soon if I don't have a cull.
I'm planning my team day on Tuesday ; I've already set out the room and bought coffee, tea, juices, mineral water, biscuits, nuts and raisins and chocolate as well as disposable tablecloths, plates, cutlery, napkins etc but on Tuesday morning I shall have to be out early to get fresh fruit, fresh bread rolls, Danish Pastries, cheeses, olives, salads and other nice things; my senior practitioner is baking and decorating a cake!
The team work hard and we have much to celebrate as well as much work to do so on team day I always give them a nice breakfast and lunch and ,if I cater it myself, I can do it at a higher quality and for a fraction of the price than a caterer. It's a lot of work but they're worth it. Unsurprisingly our team days are rather popular :)
In other news CBC is on walkabout again, 48 hours and counting; I know by now that he usually comes back on day #4 but I can't get out of the habit of fretting about him.
Please to be sending " come home soon CBC" vibes.
Also suggestions welcome for a 30th anniversary gift for The Boy.
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