About Me

Llantwit Major, Wales, United Kingdom
I am mother, librarian, avid reader, sf fan, writer (unpubished), singer(amateur), animal lover, needlewoman.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Holy Friday

We are in Pembrokeshire for Easter.  This is probably the first time because usually the kids are all home over Easter so we are in Llantwit, however as Kate has been home the previous 2 weeks, and both Adam and Nic are working over the weekend I have come to Pembs.

St Davids is a very small town/large village which is a city because it has a cathedral.  However the cathedral plays a huge part in the activity of the city and means that unlike lots of small towns in Pembrokeshire it is open all year, not just in the summer when the tourists are here. 

We looked up the website to see what was happening over the Easter weekend and found out that they were doing a sort of processional stations of the cross today, as well as singing Tallis Lamentations at evensong.  We went into town and pottered around, looked in the art gallery and then joined the stations of the cross.

It was very well done.  They had done a script with a reporter who saw the story of the crucifixion as her path to a good spread, but wanted the truth and went on to interview people about what had happened.  They had a press conference with a chap with a bowler hat, talked to women who had seen the crucifixion, the Roman centurion, some children who had seen the crucifixion and so on.  We all walked through town in a long crocodile,  and holding up the traffic.  There were about 50 plus people aged from under one to elderly, with dogs, so it covered a fair cross section of people.

This evening we went to evensong where the choir sang the first section of the Tallis Lamentations which I thoroughly enjoyed.  Brian found it lacking in expression, but in the context of the service I thought it worked well.

We also gardened(Brian) and sat and read Dagger books (me).  We didn't do the long walk we had discussed while in bed in the morning but - well tomorrow maybe!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Some photos

 This is a kestrel which arrived on the garden fence, quite calmly sitting there for some time on Saturday.
 This is the part burnt pampas grass - one side done before I chickened out and put the fire out
 Here are 2 of the 5 bags of rubbish I got from the pampas grass
This is the replacement for the pond, with a new flower bed and lots of new flowers.

One more day at work and then off for 11 days!  Whoop!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Busy afternoon

The tv engineer came this afternoon because one of our new tvs isn't working properly.  We have been sent a new remote control but it isn't that, so the man came this afternoon and has taken it away.  As is always the way, the darn thing worked perfectly while he was here, which is why he took it away.

It meant that I had to take the afternoon off work, which I used to attack the front garden.  We have a pampas grass which is getting out of control, so I went for it.  It has lots and lots of dead leaves which made huge piles as I pulled them off.  One of the neighbours said that what you are meant to do is set fire to them to get rid of the dead leaves, so I did set it on fire - with the hose to hand.  However it really started to burn a bit much, and we have had so little rain, that I chickened out and put the fire out.  It looks a bit of a mess now, and I have 5 bags full of leaves etc to go up to the tip.  And a stiff back.

I also went to get a picture taken for my photo driving licence.  I had pictures done on Saturday but I looked like a serial killer they were so awful, so this afternoon after I had finished in the garden, I showered and put the make up on and practiced not smiling while still looking like a human being (and not a serial killer).  Which worked. 

The weather is so lovely at the moment, it is just fantastic.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

A garden is a lovesome thing....

We have had such a busy weekend.

Saturday Brian went to Cardiff to get a score bound while I did housework (boring).  In the afternoon we went to the garden centre and - as usual - spent way more money than planned on plants.  Then we went to buy a straight pipe connector to replace the one which is leaking very slightly from the washing machine pipe.

In the afternoon we republished Brian's website.  He has been working on this for a while, and we put it onto the server amidst great trepidation.  Would it work properly?  We were overwriting the home page of the existing website so.........

It works.  Great sighs of relief all round.  There are things wrong with it.  Some of the alignments are wrong, one of the colours needs to be changed, and the pick list was about a page long of things to alter and fix.  However it does work, and it has a brilliant thing which allows you to open a pdf of the score and see the programme notes and sample pages of the score. 

Today we did gardening.  I had replaced the non functioning water feature with a flower bed, we have used the compost from the compost bin to fill the hole and planted the plants in it.  We are feeling very organic now.  We chopped down ivy and a dead ceanothus which didn't survive the frost ( I didn't like it much anyway).  It looks fabulous out there now.

Then we lay in the sun. 

I felt guilty after a bit and went and got a Dagger book to read, which I am enjoying.

We are now showered and changed and going out to dinner with friends in half an hour.

What a great weekend!!!!!

Friday, April 15, 2011

Social weekend

I have a surprisingly social weekend.

Last night was bookclub which was the usual good chat over a meal with friends.

Tonight we are going round to some friends for a drink and a chat.

Tomorrow  night is a surprise birthday for our neighbour, and we have been invited, so we shall head off to join the party.

Then Sunday we are going round to see another couple of friends.

This is my  whole month's social networking in one weekend.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Dagger long list

We have now got a longlist for the Dagger in the library.

I have read something by everyone on the list, but some of them a year or two ago, so need to revisit those authors urgently.  I have read all the crime novels by Susan Hill, C J Sansom and William Broderick, but some of the others are new to me and I have only read one book by them.

We have the shortlisting meeting in mid May when we meet and have a looong lunch discussing the books and authors.  It is good because we have a range of preferences within the different judges, so it makes for a fairly balanced result.

Sansom writes Tudor historical novels, Susan Hill has a policeman as her main character, William Broderick has a modern monk as his main character, Goodwin has a 19th century Turkish eunuch as his.  There are police procedure ones from Harvey and James, and a variety of others as well.  It makes it all very interesting,

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Washing machine and car fixed

Brian and I spent a lovely Saturday.  While the kids went off for the day to Chepstow races - with the Grand National on the big screen - for their dad's 60th birthday, we spent the day dealing with plumbing.


Actually it has worked out  much better than it  might have.  We were able to put in a new run of outlet pipe which goes halfway round the house to get to the drain by the kitchen which will then take the water into the drain properly.  This means we don't have to dig up the garden to dig a new drain - which is good.   The hardest part was getting a hole in the garage wall to take the pipe outside and round to the drain.  We tried (this is the royal we ie I stood around making supportive noises, holding and handing things while B does all the work) two different fancy drills but they wouldn't go through the concrete blocks.  So B borrowed a heavier drill than mine with long and fat masonry bits to drill lots of small holes which he then chiselled into a big hole.

We had gone to the plumbing supplier who delivered all the pipes etc for us, and once we had the hole we then attached all the pipes together, making sure there was enough fall for the water to actually go out of the garage and into the drain.  We  finished at 6pm and were shattered.  I put a load of washing on, and it started spinning while we were in the  middle of dinner so we both leapt up and dashed out into the garage to see if there were any leaks.  Thankfully there were no leaks, and I  now have a functioning washing machine again. 

My car went into the garage yesterday and I picked it up today - it is so quiet!!

Saturday we did break to watch the Grand National - one of the horses from the yard where Nicky works was running.  State of Play came 4th last year, and was saved for the National this year, so he hasn't run for a whole year.  However we all had a little flutter and he came 4th again, coming in from way behind which was very exciting.  He paid for about a third of my pipework.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Computers again

The financial year end saga has gone up  -  and then down.

It has stabilised  in something we think will work.  It is going to be a lot of boring work in the short term, but if it works we will at least know what to do next year.

Then the internet died.  I was in the middle of doing something in work and then it just went - poof!

The guy from IT was puzzled because basically the system is refusing to recognise my  login.  It is giving me the cold shoulder - so we ended up being thwarted on that front as well.

Then I got a  phone call to say I had forgotten to send a document across with some invoices.  Good grief, even my brain isn't talking to me.

What a week!

Monday, April 4, 2011

Life is a rollercoaster

Saturday was lovely, we pottered about, Kate and Carl came over, the kids went to their father's 60th birthday party.  B and I then spent a lovely lovely half hour trying to unblock the drain that the washing machine drains into, because it was overflowing. 

I phoned to make an appointment for the man to come to unbung the drain, and someone came Monday morning.

In the meantime I had a lovely  mother's day.  Carl cooked us all lunch which was great - belly pork, spare ribs, and finished with chocolate cake.  Brian took the rehearsal in choir in the evening which was really good, and something I enjoyed a lot. 

Today has been a downturn on the rollercoaster.  The end of the financial year was last week, and the computer system which runs our library system is not at all flexible when dealing with working from more than one financial year, which is something we need to do, and need to do a lot.  I have been trying to find ways to make the system do what I want it to, but so far have not succeeded.  Curse the $%^&* thing.

Then Adam phoned to say that the drain problem is a bigger problem than I thought.  It is not just blocked.  Instead the builder who came to do the alterations when Mum came to live with us, and who put the utility room into the garage, did a crap job.  The washing machine, for the past 12 or more years, has been emptying into a rain outlet, not into a proper drain. @£$%&*)( again!

So we are now going to have to dig a new drain - this is the royal we as Brian and other men will end up doing the digging. 

I have so far resisted the wine, and luckily don't have any chocolate in the house.