Macaroni Cheese Dreams

I had a restless night dreaming about things that are bad for me.

mac and cheese

Macaroni cheese, ice-cream, tiramisu, cheesecake, clotted cream and jam on scones.

I love all of these and yet I am really not at all good with dairy. They would seriously make me suffer. Dreaming about my inner secret cravings…cheesy fondue…melted cheese with Worcestershire sauce on toast…battered halloumi…left me tossing and turning all night.

Aaaaah! I have so much to do today, but I am dozy and I have panda eyes because of my macaroni cheese dreams.

Must have a nap before greeting my Goldfinch.

Adventuring We Will Go!

adventure photo.jpg

I think I have about an hour before I really ought to climb into bed and let my weary head rest up a bit.  I am going to use that hour to start a post with my answers to Game On – S2 Created by A Guy Called Bloke and K9 Doodlepip!

Take a look at Rory’s original post for find out all the rules and see his original questions:

https://aguycalledbloke.blog/2018/09/26/game-on-series-2-adventures-and-travels/

Are you ready for an adventure?  Well, if your bag is packed and you have your passport and boarding pass ready, I think we should embark on our journey along these fabulous questions!  I am not going to make this journey without you!

Q1] What is the last holiday you took?

Back in July, I spent two entire weeks visiting friends and family in the North of England and North Wales.  I tried to keep up with blogging and filled my posts with holiday spam!

All my holidays now are spent on visiting family.  I have not been on a “holiday” holiday for many years…I think it was Texas USA perhaps…but even that was not a holiday as such, though we had an amazing time out there.

Turkey…was the last time I went on a beach and relaxation orientated holiday…although we were bored after a day and went gallivanting every other day.  We went scuba-diving in Turkey which was pretty awesome!

Q2] What is your most favourite place in all of the world that you have seen?

Oooooh la la….how could you ask a question like that!

When I was in the north of Sweden our friends took us to see a frozen waterfall.  There were icicles all the way down.  It was one of the most exquisitely beautiful sights I have ever beheld!

Q3] Do you think travelling enriches your life, your learning, your wisdom or it’s just time off?

Oh yeah..of course I think travelling is enriching.  It often opens your eyes to looking at the world in a way you have never had the opportunity to do so before.

All teenagers should travel to Africa.  It would stop them complaining about not having the lastest phone or sneakers.

Q4] What is your favourite mode of transport?

That would have to be boat for me.

PQ5] In your opinion what is a great quote that symbolises adventuring and travelling?

I have never thought about quotes other than “LIFE IS ONE BIG ADVENTURE” but while I was researching quotes to see if any were familiar, I found this:

That’s quite an inspiring little ditty – is it not!

Q6] Since you have begun travelling have you noticed any change in who you have become as a person?

I think I can say yes to that.  Especially after visiting West Africa when I was about twenty-two.  This is going to sound really stupid, but as a teenager, I started to think our family were poor, and that we were missing out on so many things our school friends had.

I realized when I first left Europe that perhaps half of people on this planet do not have a flushing toilet.  Things that I have had my whole life and take for granted like a shower with warm water, electricity to boil the kettle, to toast a slice of bread or central heating, not to mention all the services the local council provides like refuse and recycling collection…there are literally millions upon millions of people who have never had those things and yet…from what we saw, many of them were happy, healthy and incredibly kind to us.

Life was so warm (literally, it was roasting hot!) colourful and people were so friendly and gregarious.  I picked up the journal I kept during my time in Ghana when I was at my parent’s home recently. I still plan to write some posts about our adventures out there and the very special people we met.

When my sister Mandy and I returned to England, we had a completely different outlook on the world than the one we had before we left.

PQ7] What is a great song to get you in the mood for adventuring? [provide link please]

Q8] When on holiday, travelling or adventuring – do you take books/kindle to read or simply rest on the knowledge that your time away is enough to provide all your stimulation anyway?

reading book on beach.jpgOoooh very rarely have I had chance to read when I have travelled.

It seems like a nice idea, lying on the beach and sunbathing and reading a book, but my holidays have usually been to visit friends abroad and they always arrange a jam-packed schedule of trips and excursions.

I think I took a book when I went to Turkey because my friends said they wanted a beach holiday to relax – but it didn’t end up that way!

Q9] Five best holidays you have had and list why?

Oh dear…

Ghana because we had the most incredible dive into African culture and art and music and food.  People made that holiday very very special (well, we did a lot of work out there, but we had chance to spend some days relaxing so I am going to count it as a holiday)

Sweden was spectacular and full of surprises – an adventure beyond all our expectations!

Romania was beautiful and so interesting.  We had so much fun out there and made some amazing friends.

Houston, Texas, USA  when we were staying with friends who lived there. We just happened to plan our first ever trip to the States when it happened to be “All-Stars” basketball weekend in Houston.  I mean “Hello! Welcome to America!”  I have to write a post about that trip one day…it was memorable – to say the least!

Belgium with Mandy, Milly and my mum – we bought so much chocolate.  Then when we came home we wrapped it all up into little parcels with ribbon to give to friends.  It was really nice to have a girly holiday with my sisters and my mum.

Q10] Do you have a favourite blog that deals with adventuring or travelling that you read before you go?

I have not been abroad since I started reading blogs.  I have been reading the posts of several travel bloggers regularly.  Their posts are often quite stunning and they put lots of ideas in my head about where I would like to travel to.

My Dusty Flip-Flops is my favourite travel blogger though!

Q11] Are you a soloist traveller or prefer company?

If I had to, I could travel on my own (as in the transport part of it) but what is the point of travelling without someone wonderful to share it with?

PQ12] What is the most significant lesson you have learned when adventuring?

Don’t forget your toothbrush!  Nah…

I think I would have to say that my travels have confirmed that the mod-cons of the western world do not make us happier.  I have often found that in lands where there was less in a material sense, people were so much happier and friendlier.  I am dying to tell you about a family from Liberia we met…I think I will save it for another post.

Q13]  When in a new location, what are the first five things you check or do to ensure your adventure/holiday is successful?

Ha ha – define successful!  The only thing we worry about is making sure we don’t forget which date our return flights are back because we are having so much fun.

In Africa – drink lots of water! (3-4 litres a day)

In Northern Sweden – don’t go outside without your hat! (in the winter of course)

In Spain –      Cereza =        Cerbeza = 

In USA – don’t eat for three weeks before you go, and don’t eat for six weeks after you go!

In Germany – rules are made for breaking! (Ooooh er – there is a post I need to publish to explain that.)

Q14] Are you a rigid planner for adventures, or just throw a few things into a bag and let the day take you wherever?

At one stage I think I would have been a planner, that was in my nature.  However, almost every holiday I have been on turned out to be an adventure because I let go of worrying and let others whisk us off to the most unbelievable places – way off the tourist route.

When we trust our friends and let them surprise we have been amazed at what they have arranged for us.

PQ15] In your opinion what do you think is needed to make an adventure/holiday really successful?

Friends or family abroad who know the area, and have the time to introduce you to the delights of life in that land. I would rather be in a sleeping bag on the floor of my friend’s living room than in an all-inclusive hotel.  Friends abroad make travel wonderful.

Q16] When adventuring do you have a traditional routine or just go with the flow?

I like trying things I have never tried before!

I go with the flow…some of the friends I have travelled with have a bit of a routine or holiday customs.  But I am happy to “go with the flow” so long as that means seeing new places, eating new foods, singing, dancing, fascinating culture or history or art, lively people, gorgeous scenery.

Q17] Are you totally relaxed when holidaying/adventuring as in let your hair completely down, or hang on to a sense of reticence?

During the day, I love anything outdoors, any opportunity for climbing, hiking, swimming, sailing, scuba diving or anything active is something I would grab.  I love feeling like a kiddo and availing myself of any energetic and unforgettable activities.

I have had a lot of fun when travelling…there is something about being “on holiday” that makes me even braver.  I have done a lot of singing and dancing when abroad and I certainly do have some tales to tell!

Or maybe I will tell them in future posts!

Q18] How important is adventuring/holidaying away to you?

travelerI have always loved opportunities to travel.  Of course I want to travel again in the future.  Right now, my desire to get back to my home on the other side of London is far greater than any desire to travel elsewhere.  I feel lost at the moment.  I hardly have the appetite for anything like adventure until I am feeling settled back at home.

You see it is a wonderful thing to travel knowing you have a home to return to.  I have a very sweet abode currently, but it is not MY HOME.  I need to be home before I have the appetite for travelling.

Q19] Are you completely and utterly true to your personality when ‘away’ or do you become someone else?

I don’t think I change as such.  But the playful side of me is allowed more fun and expression.  I seem to laugh a lot when I am abroad.  For years I have had a jam-packed schedule (don’t we all) where I am always thinking of the next task ahead and it is nice to be on holiday and not to worry about what my next job is.

For some reason I have always felt the need to be a bit of an “entertainer” with friends. When I am abroad on holiday I think I need very little encouragement to get the party going!  I like to see my friends enjoying themselves as much as I am!

PQ20] Are you deleting any questions, if so which ones?

Q4] Recently l read, and it’s not new about windowless aircraft which will be the future of air travel, what are your views on this?

Windowless planes???

Q21] You have been gifted a 42 day holiday of your dreams all expenses paid – where would you choose to go?

Six weeks!  Ask me this month…. I think I would say South America because I never have been and I would love to go!

Ask me in December and I would say Australia to see my wonderful Goldfinch!

Please…I Don’t Want Summer To Be Over Yet

I think today might be the last day of sun and warmth this year.  I have to admit it has felt good seeing folks in shorts and T-shirts and sunglasses and sandals this morning.

I have to start work soon and spend the last day of warmth indoors.  Nevermind!

I know autumn can be very beautiful.   But I can’t wait until spring and summer return and I start to live again.  I am so eager for the cold dark months ahead to be over already and to be feeling the excitement build within me once I detect that life and colour  are returning.

See me now…riding my bike down dusty country lanes with my friends, all of us wearing our summer glad rags. Just have to grin and bear the six months or so of cold, grey, damp days.

Summer songs may help distract me:

 

https://fivedotoh.com/2018/09/27/fowc-with-fandango-eager/

If I Sound A Bit Confused, Maybe That’s Because I Ran Out Of Coffee Today

Another week has flown by and it is time for this week’s SHARE YOUR WORLD questions, currently being hosted by Melanie B Cee… over at sparksfromacombustiblemind as you can see in her post below:

https://sparksfromacombustiblemind.com/2018/09/24/share-your-world-9-24-18/

This week’s questions are:

Last week I asked a question about favourite beverages and the overwhelming favourite was coffee. If you drink coffee, how do you like it best?  Hot, cold, iced, with cream, with sugar or black as black? 

I have always loved the taste and aroma of coffee flavouring. (For some reason all I can think of is Tales from the mind of Kristian shaking his head and rolling his eyes in disgust!)

I think I mentioned in another post that when I was around six or seven I became a bit addicted to coffee. I was convinced that it helped me to swim faster (my sisters and I were competition swimmers).  I would have milky coffee and about six biscuits believing this was some amazing wonder-fuel.

My mother was so concerned about the amount of coffee I was drinking at a tender age that she banned me from coffee!

Also my singing teacher told me to avoid hot drinks so for at least fifteen years I didn’t have coffee or tea.

Then in my early twenties I discovered iced coffee.  Loved that… until I found out how many calories my favourite iced coffee had tucked away – scary!

When I moved to London I started waking up every day at five o’clock in the morning.  I soon found a new appreciation for very strong espresso.

When I lived with Italians, they had a great coffee machine and they were very good at making sure everyone was well caffeinated early in the morning.  I also worked with lots of Italians.  They took responsibility for making the coffee at break-time as they were less than impressed at the dishwater the rest of us called coffee!

In your opinion, what’s the greatest invention of our age?     

My opinion is probably not worth toffee…I am sure others will think of better inventions.  I am going to mention something though I realize makes a big difference to me and my loved ones:

When I think of inventions I think of things than have been designed to make life easier, or speed tasks up or even accomplish things we may never have imagined were possible. Although I am a bit of a technophobe and I am very wary of those who use it for sinister intentions…I think the internet and electronic messaging services are remarkable.

Do you realize that when my Goldfinch moves back to Australia in November…I will be able to send him an e-mail from the opposite side of the planet and it will arrive within seconds?!!

I have family members working in lands in Africa, parts of Russia, the Middle East, South East Asia and Central and South America…I can e-mail them or Skype them…and it is all for free!  Astonishing!

So despite it’s many drawbacks, (and I must admit I don’t like the crazy pace of life that everything seems to run at today) it is pretty amazing that I can communicate with someone I love who is so far away.

global.jpgIf only all the amazing tools that have been invented were only entrusted to good people who would use them to promote good things…and those who had harmful intentions were not allowed access to those tools…I don’t know, I guess it is not as simple as my mum confiscating their phone or tablet or computer until they have learnt their lesson and changed their heart.

Global warming?  Reality or myth?

I am surprised it has become such a debate.  It is of interest to me that some believe and some doubt that human activity is causing a detrimental effect to our global climate on a scale never yet seen in the course of human history.  I have heard people’s views and read articles quoting  various scientists.  Some very persuasively argue that temperatures are rising and this is effecting weather patterns and increasing the frequency and force of extreme weather conditions.  I do take the warnings about global warming seriously.

I am not sure my knowledge and understanding on a scientific level are worth adding to the multitude of words that have been published on this subject.

What registered in my mind some years ago was a verse I have read many times that says the Creator will bring to ruin those who are ruining the earth.  He will not allow it to be ruined completely.  And as far as I can see it is only in recent times that due to the scale of industrialisation, the burning of fossil fuels and the pollution of our air and water, we have reached a stage where humankind have the ability to “ruin” the earth.

So yes, I do believe that if allowed to continue at this pace, human activity could potentially ruin the cycles and forces that have regulated our planet’s climate.  Do I believe it will become so bad that human life itself will be wiped out by our own activity?  Well, I don’t believe that the Creator would tolerate that.  Nobody who had built a house and allowed tenants to live there (who started wreaking havoc on the property), would let the house be ruined beyond recovery.  Bad tenants are eventually evicted, good tenants remain. Scores of passages refer to how He will change the way this planet is governed.

Are you an explorer or more a home body?

travelerI am currently separated from my real home which is on the other side of London.  So, I kind of feel as if I am camping out here in my current accommodation (very pretty though it is). I have always loved travel.  But I long for my real home…it’s been over three years since I was there and I ache to return.

I think once I feel settled back into my own home, then my desire to explore the rest of this beautiful planet will return to me.  Until then I am reading lots of travel blogs!!  Travel bloggers produce such stunning posts.

and last:

What were you grateful for this week?

My two younger sisters came to visit me here in London at the weekend.  It was wonderful!

To sum up:

A Technophobe Who Thinks The Internet Is Super (When Used By Good Hearted Peeps)….

And Wants To Go Home So She Can Start Travelling Again….

And Who Drinks Coffee Anyway It Comes….

And Is Grateful For Her Family And Her Adorable Sisters…

And Hopes For This Earth To Be In Much Better Hands One Day

And Crumpets For Breakfast Too…

Did you enjoy the Muppets advertising Warburtons Giant Crumpets?

Well…if you did, you might possibly enjoy this.

Peter Kay could be described as the quintessential…erm…I don’t think it is ever going to work is it?

He is is a popular comedian from the north of England…some of the content is linked to famous comic performances of his own (I only picked up on GAAAAAAARLIC BREAD!)

 

 

https://onedailyprompt.wordpress.com/2018/09/25/your-daily-word-prompt-quintessential-september-25th-2018/

Fancy A Crumpet?

I came home really late tonight….I have not eaten for twelve hours…and my last meal was a limp sandwich.  However it is too late to cook.  Then I remembered I bought myself a treat on Saturday and have not tried any yet.

It’s a cup of tea and a hot buttered crumpet for me before bedtime!

Which of course made me think of this:

Fast forward to 3 minutes and 30 seconds into the video for the sing-along version!!!!

Just A Little Something

I read so many posts about the challenges others have had, either on a short term basis, or, in some cases, for an entire life-time, with their emotional or mental health. I truly appreciate the honesty and courage of many posts.

Well…I have to say it sometimes makes me very tearful hearing or reading about the enormous challenges others have faced.  I read a post the other day which had me sobbing about a blogger who had lost her beloved husband…ay ay ay! But there are many others who refer to crushing blows to their emotional health.

Sometimes, I wish I could run around giving out hugs and boxing up rays of sunshine, rainbows, cupcakes, daisies and fluffy bunnies or literally whatever it would take to sooth a heart crushed with pain or warm a spirit frozen by despair.

But for most, there is no easy answer…no quick fix solution.

I still think that for each one of us…it is a mighty good thing to do something, even if it is a very little something.  I remember a very annoying goofy twenty two year old lad who was nowhere near the top of my list of wanted visitors after I left hospital over three years ago. In fact at one stage I felt edgy around any men. He did something…a very little something. Three little somethings actually. One was a daisy, one solitary daisy that he had picked for me because he knew I like them, one was a packet of peanut M&Ms because he thought I would like them, and the other was a recording on his mobile phone of his brother singing a crooner in the shower, which was frankly the little something that clinched it for me and made me smile and then laugh.

There is no quick fix solution, but I still think it a mighty good thing to do something, whether it is goofy or seems insignificant, to show someone you are worried about, that you wish there was something you could give to take away their pain. But more than anything, to show you care, you might not truly understand, but you care.

It’s clear that the chap below cared and did something for someone he cared about:

I have had one major challenge to deal with myself…as I have referred to in some posts. I feel a million times better now I have had a chance to distance myself from that situation for some time.  The pain is there but I am winning!

I made a dreadful mistake, I didn’t know how harmful it was to bottle up all the hurt that situation was causing me and try to deal with it on my own. In my case, it was the drip drip effect of constant taunting for over two years and then the animosity of one person, that intensified during the year before I was the victim of a crime. It wore me down, to the point I made at least one unwise decision and put myself in danger.

I have said it before and I will say it again, what happened to me in the park has not really been so hard to get over. It’s there, but it is in a box with the lid firmly sealed tight shut and I keep that box on the very top shelf.  I do feel as if I have conquered that threat to my peace of mind and joyful disposition.  The other challenge…it has not been so easy.

I am very grateful for all of the little tiny somethings that others did.  Nobody could undo what had happened to me. At the time there was certainly no way I was going to just wake up and forget everything that was hurting and “get over it” with the click of my fingers. I was not always able to cope with visitors or anything that excited or tired me too much. But all those little somethings from others mean so much to me!

https://fivedotoh.com/2018/09/23/fowc-with-fandango-bottle/

Normally I Can’t Bear To Look

I had such a wonderful time with my sisters yesterday and I am looking forward to today just as much. Our time together will be over in a flash I am sure, and soon I will be longing to see them again.

Baker by Ted Baker - 'Girls' navy floral print dressI saw this dress and thought I would love to wear it myself…but it is only available in munchkin sizes. So I bought one in 18-24 months for my gorgeous niece.

Oh I do like spoiling them all.  I bought gifts for Mandy and Milly too. All sorts of goodies…chockies and a jar of this and a bottle of that.  I also bought Milly a new food processor as she was quite envious of mine last time she visited.  Aaaaah…so lovely to have the girlies with me for the weekend.

It is pouring down…so we are having indoor fun. Which is fine…lots of very nice things to do indoors.  All we want to do is chatter anyway!

Yesterday, they were telling me lots of news from my friends up north.  I have missed lots of weddings because it is just not possible to travel up north every other week.  They were telling me about two very very funny friends of ours who were married recently, both of the girls went along to the wedding and they had lots of photos and some videos which I loved seeing.

They had chosen to dedicate at least one evening each week for months to taking dance lessons so that they could wow everyone with their first dance at their wedding reception. Normally I can’t bear to look when a newly married couple stand up for their first dance. It can be so awkward…everyone watching.  I always look the other way so I don’t start giggling!

And they certainly did wow everyone!  I am not going to post a video of their first dance of course – I am sure they would not be happy about that…but to give you a little idea of their dance…

Oh my, I really do wish I had made it to that wedding!

 

 

https://fivedotoh.com/2018/09/23/fowc-with-fandango-bottle/

https://onedailyprompt.wordpress.com/2018/09/23/your-daily-word-prompt-dedicate-september-23rd-2018/

Sisters In The City!

I am still recovering from my Friday! I was working for fourteen hours in total yesterday and ended the day injured by one of the heaviest objects I have ever had the misfortune to pick a fight with!  An enormous heavy marble slab toppled over onto my poor ickle tootsie and so now I have a blue and fat foot. Hardly fortuitous!

But nothing will burst my bubble this weekend…because…two of my sisters are heading to London!  How exciting!!!!!!!  Both live over two hundred miles from me, and over one hundred miles away from each other, so it has been a while since we were all together at the same time.  For anyone who has sisters anywhere near as fabulous as mine, you surely must understand what it is like to be this excited!

I am number five of seven children, and it is number six and seven who are heading my way!  Well, I have a few things to do before their arrival…but I will keep an eye out for new posts appearing in WP Reader.

Hope you enjoyed these familiar and fabulous faces who all look like they belong up on a carnival float with those huge feather fans!  I just gotta get me one of those!  How have I lived this long without one?

 

 

https://fivedotoh.com/2018/09/22/fowc-with-fandango-number/

https://onedailyprompt.wordpress.com/2018/09/22/your-daily-word-prompt-fortuitous-september-22nd-2018/

https://wordofthedaychallenge.wordpress.com/2018/09/22/carnival/

Learner at Love

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