Saturday, 31 December 2022

Decorations down, thinking about savings

 29th/30th/31st - So on Thursday we took the Christmas decs down and put them away.  I was surprised to find I had quite a few surplus decorations, mainly hanging ones for the tree or windows, and some lengths of tinsel.  None of them have any sentimental value as I'd bought them mainly from charity shops last year or the year before.  As I didn't use them this year and can't see me using them again, I've bagged them up for the charity shop - my first bit of decluttering for the new year.  The house looks so bare without the decorations, even though there weren't that many.

Over the next few weeks, I'm going to start photographing and listing things for sale on the local social media selling pages.  For a start, I have a winter coat that I've had for I think 3 years - it's unworn and still with the tags attached.  It's a really thick padded one and, although I like it, it makes me look like the Michelin Man, so I've never worn it.  What a shame I didn't return it at the time and get my money back - or even that I didn't try it on in the shop and decide there and then not to buy it!  Oh well, someone else will hopefully get some use out of it and it'll be some money in the house removals fund.  With food prices rising every week, I'll be trying hard to reduce our shopping bill, I'll start by eating out of the fridge, larder and freezer for January and only shopping for fresh veg and dairy.  A couple of days ago we went to the supermarket and managed to get a whole side of salmon, an Aberdeen Angus beef joint and a gammon, all reduced to half price, they should do us for several weeks of meals with some creative recipes.  I won't eat the beef, but will of course eat the salmon and some of the gammon occasionally.

Husband went to the GP again on Thurs morning (I'm so glad we have no trouble at all getting to see our GPs) as he's been getting dizzy spells and losing his balance even more lately.  The GP checked him over again and took BP readings, both sitting and standing.  He said that although it's partly due to his faulty heart not pumping enough oxygen to his brain, which we knew already, the increased loss of balance lately is due to the extra heart meds he's been put on which are reducing his (already on the low side) blood pressure.  The GP said it's difficult to get a good balance - on the one hand husband needs all the heart meds....on the other, they do contribute to his loss of balance and dizziness.  He advised him to ensure he stands up slowly when he's been sitting down, and to sit on the side of the bed for a few seconds before he gets up.  If I didn't grab hold of him sometimes, he would fall over, his balance is affected that much at times.

I'm happy to say I'm feeling so much better now, thank goodness, that blimmin virus was a pain in the arse (well, throat, chest and head).  Both of us still have the cough, though.

The roses and lilies that husband got me a couple of days before Christmas lasted quite well - roses quite often fade and droop quickly don't they.  I'd thrown out a couple of dying stems Thurs afternoon, the rest I shall probably put in the compost bin tomorrow.

We went to our neighbours for their little get-together last night, we enjoyed some nibbles and chat.  I took along some choc chip shortbread I made yesterday morning.  We only stayed a couple of hours though.....although I'm feeling better, I do still feel a bit rough and very tired indeed in the evenings and have to go to bed early.  So I doubt I'll be seeing the new year in tonight.

One of our neighbours, an elderly widow, lives alone - she has 2 sons with families but they don't live nearby.  We keep an eye on her, do a few odd jobs for her, go to her house for coffee and cake regularly, pick up the odd bit of shopping if we're going and she needs something.  She shows her thanks every year (not that she needs to, we're happy to do it all, she's a lovely lady) by giving us an extremely generous garden centre voucher for Christmas.  So next week, once people are back at work, kids back to school and less crowds around, we'll go to the garden centre and have a look in their sales.  Last year we got some bits for the caravan with the voucher - I've got nothing in mind this year, we'll just see what they've got.

I would like to wish all of my wonderful readers a very Happy New Year, may it be a good one for you.

Wednesday, 28 December 2022


 26th/27th/28th - Well, on Day 12 of the lurgy, I can finally say I'm now beginning to feel better, during the day at least, other than the hacking cough still, but at least it's not making my head explode each time now.  However, come the evenings I do still feel rough.  I think husband probably caught this bug during his day in hospital, and then passed it on to me a few days later.  As I said though, oddly enough his version of it was milder and shorter lived than mine.....just as well, I suppose, as it could have had more serious consequences for him.  It's certainly the most unwell I've felt for many a year - though why it should have made me quite so ill I don't know, I can only assume it's because I've been very rundown for a while.  Oh and I have less contact with people (neighbours mostly) than husband does, he's always nipping outside for a chat with neighbours and talks to anybody and everybody when we're out and about, he's very sociable.  Whereas I'm not - I more or less gave up years ago trying to get a word in edgeways when he's chatting to anyone, as he totally dominates the conversation.  So perhaps my immune system has suffered from not being exposed to bugs etc, whereas his hasn't so much.

Normally, when I'm unwell for whatever reason, I don't let it stop me getting on with housework, washing, cooking, washing up etc - well, someone's got to do it!  However, this time, and partly because I really did feel very ill indeed, I didn't carry on as normal - I mostly stayed upstairs in my bedroom, in bed or my recliner chair.  Part of it was me thinking 'sod it, I'm buggered if I'm dragging myself downstairs to get food for him - if he's hungry he can bloody well get it himself!'.  His appetite didn't drop whilst he was unwell - I think he'd have to be dying before he lost his appetite!  Whereas mine did - a few meals I skipped altogether, meals I did eat were very small.  So if husband wanted to eat, he had to make the effort to get something himself, he did ask me if I wanted anything and got food for me if or when I wanted it.  He also fed the dog.  I also asked him to keep me supplied with hot honey and lemon, which he did.  No clothes washing got done for several days - he doesn't know how to programme the machine and there's no point in me showing him....I have done so several times but he forgets instantly, so I would have to show him again every single time.  No point in writing it down either, because of his dyslexia.  Halfway through my illness I did put a wash on, asking him to get it out of the machine when it was finished and put it on the airer.....he forgot until the next day.  A couple of times I came downstairs to find the washing up bowl and worktops full of dirty dishes, but I just ignored it all and he did it (when he was running out of clean plates and mugs, I expect).  So I think that me downing tools and doing nothing for several days did show him and make him realise just how much I do for him, which can only be a good thing.

I've been thinking about a focus for next year - the last 2 years it's been our beloved caravan (which incidentally I'm trying not to think about too much, I don't want to fill my head with worries about possible burst pipes or leaks, although I think the site owner keeps a general eye on things and would no doubt let us know if there was a serious problem).  We haven't yet heard if our housing application has been approved (the website still says awaiting approval, they're behind by about 4-6 weeks apparently), but I'm going to assume that we will get approval.  Of course, even if we are accepted onto the list, there's no telling when we'll be able to find a suitable property, put in a bid for it, get accepted and move - according to the Council website, it can take up to 5 years to be offered a bungalow, which is the type of property we want.  But as far as I'm concerned, the longer the wait, the more time we will have to save up for removal costs.  So my focus is going to be downsizing and clearing out clutter, and serious saving towards this end I've opened up another savings account, purely for removal savings.  Any surplus stuff (such as furniture, electrical goods, etc) which is saleable, we'll sell via the local social media selling pages and the money will go into the savings account.  Husband will no doubt do a car boot sale when they start up again next year, he can sell his surplus tools and things he's recently acquired from neighbours, such as a couple of unwanted lawnmowers (he said he was going to stop taking in yet more junk from neighbours!  So much for promises....).  And if husband does get the Attendance Allowance, it'll be backdated which means a lump sum initially, that will go straight into the account, along with any other money I can transfer over regularly.

We're invited to neighbours this Friday for nibbles and chat - postponed from last Friday as I was so unwell.  Let's hope I'm well enough this time!  I shall pack away the tree and the few other decorations this weekend.....I would have done it already if I was feeling at full strength, I'm not keen on the decorations hanging around after Boxing Day, none of this 12th night stuff for me.  It's very nearly 2023 and I'm looking forward to it, I feel quite positive about the upcoming year, for a change.

I hope you've all recovered from your Christmases, and those of you who are unwell are beginning to feel better.  Back in a few days x

Monday, 26 December 2022

The week to Boxing Day

 Did you all have a nice Christmas?  Ours was very low key, the Friday before Xmas we were supposed to be going to neighbours for festive nibbles and chat, but I just wasn't well enough.  Christmas Day itself was very quiet, we had Eggs Benedict for breakfast, I made Hollandaise sauce for the first time ever, it was ok but a bit too lemony, I'll use less next time.  Husband had his beef roast dinner, I was going to make a fresh salmon and king prawn Wellington for myself, but didn't fancy the pastry so just did the salmon and prawns in a parsley sauce, however come time for lunch I was feeling poorly again so only ate a little.  I made a citrus trifle for afters, which I didn't have until later....after watching the King's speech I went back upstairs to doze in my armchair.  We had a sort of mini ploughmans in the evening - some cheese, a couple of crackers with cranberry relish for me, with the addition of a couple of leftover pigs in blankets and slice of beef for husband, followed by some mince pies for him and a little bowl of trifle for me.  He's got enough beef left for his sandwiches for a couple of days afterwards.  It being the 3rd anniversary of my Mum's death on Christmas Eve didn't affect me as much as last year....I thought about her, of course, but without any tears or sadness, only good memories.  The thing I miss about her the most is how wise she was - I could ring her with any problem and she'd always have good advice.

Last Wednesday evening was the worst I'd ever felt - if the ambulances hadn't been on strike I think I would have asked husband to ring for one.  My chest was so tight I was having difficulty breathing, I had what felt like a deep pool of mucus in the back of my throat which felt like it was choking me, and every time I coughed (which was often) my head exploded with pain.  I was having honey & lemon in hot water and cocodamol and soluble aspirin alternately (in recommended doses, I didn't overdose!), but they just weren't touching the pain in my head and chest.  I was using so much Olbas oil and Vicks to help my breathing that the dog kept coming up and sniffing me all the time, which would have been funny if I was in any state to laugh.  I spent several hours sitting up in my recliner armchair, until my breathing finally got easier in the early hours and I was able to lie down.  I wouldn't wish this bloody virus/bug on my worst enemy, it's awful.  As fast as I start to feel better, so then I'm hit with the terrible cough, exploding head and tight chest again.  I feel a bit better generally, but nowhere near well yet, even after 10 days.  Strange - husband's the one with heart and lung problems (he has asbestos plaques on his lungs), yet his bug lasted just a week and it's me who's been the most unwell with this virus.  I guess I'm just really run down.  On a positive note, I've discovered lemon and honey in hot water tastes even better with a slosh of ginger wine in it!

Husband asked me a question the other day....he'd obviously been thinking about how I'd filled in the Attendance Allowance form and asked me if I thought he was dependent on me.  I said well the few days last week where I was too unwell to do anything except essential stuff, and he did virtually nothing at all because I wasn't around to chivvy him up and get him doing jobs, more or less proved that he is!  He sat in his lounger chair and watched TV - all day - even after he was feeling better, until I was feeling well enough to be up and about downstairs and getting on with the housework, washing, cooking, making dog food, putting the shopping away, etc etc. and could get him doing things.  He still does nothing unless I ask him to, I even have to remind him every time to do the couple of jobs that are 'his' - vacuuming and emptying the bins.  I don't get annoyed about it now, but I do tell him occasionally just how irritating it is to have to keep asking him, rather than him getting on and doing it without me constantly having to remind him it needs doing.  E.g., the kitchen and bathroom bins can be overflowing, yet it still doesn't occur to him to empty them without being asked.  Go figure!  I don't think he's going to change and suddenly become a model husband after 40 years, do you?!  So I just have to suck it up and get on with life.

Having said that, last Friday early morning he went to town to pick up a few last minute bits I'd forgotten in the delivered shopping.  He got them all and came back with a new chewy for Betty, and a beautiful bouquet of roses and lilies from M&S for me.....he said me telling him I felt unappreciated and taken for granted had pricked his conscience (must remember to tell him more often!).

I haven't set foot outside the house since the start of this illness and am now feeling a bit stir crazy, so as soon as I feel well enough (hopefully in the next couple of days) we're going to venture out somewhere, even if only for a drive.  I'd love some fresh air and a change of scenery.

Wednesday, 21 December 2022

Bloody virus, and a catch up

 Thank you for all the lovely messages, I really appreciate them.

Although I wasn't up to posting, I did keep some diary entries about a few notable, or even mundane and frankly boring, events and days.  So here are some brief snippets of life during the past couple of weeks:-

Monday 12/12 - I finally finished the bloody awful AA form.....that's 5 or 6 hours of my life I'll never get back.  Husband took it to the Post Office to send it 1st Class Signed For - given the postal strikes, he was told they couldn't guarantee next day delivery but would do their best.  But at least we know it'll be signed for on delivery, so provides proof of receipt.

Tues 13/12 - A baking for the freezer day.  I made sausage rolls, a salmon pie (pastry base and herby crumble topping) and salmon fishcakes.  Also prepped a trayful of pigs in blankets and froze them uncooked.  Husband had a cold (just a normal cold, thankfully nothing worse) and felt unwell, so spent all morning in bed, leaving me free to get on in peace.  I finished writing all the hand-delivery cards and wrapped presents.

Weds/Thurs 14/15th - Did nothing much, other than washing and microwave cooking homemade meals out of the freezer.  I managed to avoid catching husband's cold, but he was feeling quite poorly with it and spent a lot of time in bed.  The cold weather was really affecting my hips and knees, I was in agony, and not sleeping much because of the pain.  Think both of us are run down, so a couple of days resting should do us both good.

Fri 16th - Husband said he was starting to feel better - still very obviously full of cold but he looked better.  I've not caught it yet, fighting it off by swallowing handfuls of Vit C and zinc tabs, and having plenty of hot drinks.  We've had the heating on virtually all the time....well, we don't have it on husband was feeling the cold, especially as he wasn't moving around much.  I'd slept well and felt revived.  Did some washing and tidying up, made a smoked haddock and king prawn chowder for dinner.  Got out a half-finished crochet shawl I'd been making for my friend a couple of years ago...sadly she died before I could finish it and I just didn't have the heart to carry on.  I do like the colours though so I'll finish it for myself.

Sat 17th - I finally succumbed to the lurgy - hardly surprising when husband is totally indiscriminate about where and how he coughs and sneezes 🤬.  Normally I don't give in to colds etc - well someone (me) has to get on with everything!  But this time I thought sod it, I'm going back to bed.  So I did....but then got back up after an hour, staying in bed is just not me.  Didn't do a lot though, only what was necessary.  

Sun/Mon 18/19 - pretty much a repeat of Saturday, except I felt worse, very sore throat, blinding headache exacerbated by coughing, and no energy so I didn't even get dressed.  Husband is feeling better, although has a terrible hacking cough.  One thing is apparent - if I'm not around, nothing gets done.  I spent most of the time upstairs in my recliner armchair reading, crocheting or dozing, husband apparently did nothing.  He does do stuff nowadays if I ask him to, and generally without complaining, but if I don't actually ask him, he won't do anything of his own accord.  One good thing - Mon morning had a text to say Attendance Allowance form received and we will get a decision within 8 weeks.  I sincerely hope it's positive, I really need some good news.  It's been a very hard few months and I've never felt so low for so long before.  It's soul-destroying to keep feeling like I'm banging my head against a brick wall all the time.  I'm so worn out with struggling.

Tues 20th - Spent half the night sitting in my recliner chair - when lying down in bed I couldn't breathe, at least I could be propped up but still comfortable in the recliner.  Despite that, I did feel a bit better this morning, apart from a tight chest and headache due to all the coughing.  However, come the evening I felt really rough again and had an early night.  Had our pet insurance renewal in - it's gone up a staggering 25% on last year, and we haven't even made a claim!  So I got some comparison quotes and found a policy with very similar benefits, lower excess and it's just over half the cost of our present insurance - prior to the renewal increase.  So I've taken that one out and cancelled the greedy present one.  Means Betty's ongoing ear infections won't be covered, but we never claimed on the insurance for them anyway, as the cost generally came to less than the excess.

Weds 21st - It's the Winter Solstice today, which makes me happy - the shortest day and from now on, albeit slowly, the days get a bit longer.  It signals the gradual approach of Spring for me, my favourite season of the year.  I'm feeling even rougher today so have gone back to bed.  Bloody virus.

Wishing every one of you a very Happy Christmas, whatever you're doing - I hope it's everything you want it to be.  I'll be back sometime after Christmas.

Monday, 12 December 2022

Bye for now

 I'm taking a break for a couple of weeks, I'm just so tired.  I'll be back in the new year.  Have a lovely Christmas, however you plan to mark it.

Thank you all so much for the support and kindness you've all shown me, both on here and in emails, you'll never know just how much it means to me. 

Take care of yourselves xx

Sunday, 11 December 2022

Treat things

 Husband is fully recovered from the procedure, he's slept well and feels fine this morning.  He took the dressing off his wrist and it looks absolutely fine.  Hardly any bruising yet, in either arm (he had a cannula in the other arm) but it might come out over the next few days.....last time he had stents fitted he was bruised quite heavily.  But of course he's not had stents this time.  His heart meds make him bruise easily though.  

He's allowed to drive from today, there's a Christmas fair on locally this morning so we'll go to that, it's only a couple of miles away.  Then tomorrow or Tuesday, we'll go to town and get some Christmas goodies - we have most food, toiletries and dog food already, fresh food is coming in my Sainsbury's delivery next week.  We want to get some treats though.....husband has asked for a bottle of ginger wine (neither of us drinks alcohol really - I almost never do, husband only rarely, but he does like a little glass of ginger wine or a bottle of stout once in a blue moon).  We'll get a few bags of nuts, some crisps and a box of Lindor chocolates - I'm not a chocoholic but I do like those.  Some mince pies as well - I always used to make my own, using homemade mincemeat, but I don't bother nowadays....I hardly eat any, perhaps 2 or 3 over the festive season, but husband does like a few and he's not fussy about where they come from.  No Christmas cake or pudding though, we're not keen on either.  I'll get some treats, including a big chewy bone, for Betty as well.  She's not really fussed about toys much, she rips them to shreds within minutes anyway, it's cheaper to just give her a washed-out plastic milk carton with a few treat biscuits inside it, that keeps her amused for 15 minutes.  But she does like a chewy bone - not a real bone, one of those that look like plastic or rubber and are impregnated with some meat flavouring, or a deer antler.  Oh and I'll also get a TV mag, to check if there's anything worth watching over the festive period.  I wonder what King Charles will say in his first Christmas speech?  That's if he's doing one.....I assume he'll want to carry on his mother's tradition.

It's been freezing cold the past few days, with frost and ice in the morning, the last couple of days the ice has stuck around all day as the temperature even during the day hasn't risen much above freezing.  No sign of any snow though, and I hope we don't get it - although Betty does love playing in the snow, so perhaps we could have it just for one morning and then it should go away, please! 😁  Since we've had the new windows and roof, the house is definitely much warmer than before, I put the heating on when I get up around 6 am, it's on for a couple of hours and then we turn it off.  We have it on again during the evening, of course, and we do put it on for an hour or so during the day if we get cold - we're not stupid.  In any case, we're well in credit (almost £400) with our electricity bill so I'm not worried about it.  We have fleece blankets if we get a bit chilly, and I have a lovely fur throw upstairs for when I'm sitting reading in my recliner chair in the bedroom.  We also have hot water bottles with fleece covers but haven't needed them yet.

The cards that needed posting got put in the box at the end of the road yesterday, just the neighbours' ones to write and deliver now.

Saturday, 10 December 2022

Bit of an anticlimax, waste of a worry lol

I looked at the local weather app on my phone before I got out of bed and it said -4 and heavy snow.....oh please no, I thought, I've got to get up and take the dog out.  Got up and looked out of the snow at all that I could see in the dim light of next door's fairy lights on their garage, thank goodness, it's certainly bloody cold though. 

I wasn't allowed inside the ward to collect husband yesterday, had to wait outside in the corridor - different from last time, when relatives could go in and sit beside the patient.  But that was pre-covid!  Husband wasn't given any discharge notes or a letter, only a post-procedure leaflet.  It appears the angiogram showed his arteries aren't blocked, however, some of the smaller blood vessels may be.  These are too small for stents, but extra medication will sort those out, so the consultant told husband.  He's to carry on with his current meds and ring his GP next week, who will have been told to prescribe the extra meds.  He'll certainly be rattling when he walks, he's on about 10 meds already, never mind the extra ones next week.

He seems fine, the sedative had worn off by the time we got home and he's not got much pain or bleeding, although he said the wound did bleed a bit in the hospital after the procedure.  Not as much as last time he had it done though, when it bled a lot and the nurse he called over laughed and said "oh we've got a right bleeder here!" 😂

I'm glad we've not got any snow, as I'm taking the dog out by myself for a few days and I really don't feel safe walking in snow.  Although it's cold, it's been gloriously sunny for the past couple of days, which thankfully clears away the overnight frost.

As husband didn't have any stents fitted, he was told he can start driving again from tomorrow, although he's not to lift anything heavy for a few days (an excuse to get out of doing any washing up or hoovering, no doubt 😁).

I've woken up this morning with awful aching pains in my neck and shoulders - I don't feel at all ill, just these aches, I reckon it's tension, I expect I was even more anxious than I thought yesterday.

Just realised it's only a fortnight tomorrow till Christmas day, and I've STILL not got all my cards written out, never mind posted.  If I don't post them this morning (fortunately, there's a little postbox in the wall of the house just round the corner) then it won't be worth posting them, what with all the strikes going on.  I've never been this late with cards before.  Just got no oomph this time.

Friday, 9 December 2022

Done already

 Just had a phone call from husband to say he's been done (he was first on the list) and can come home around 12 noon.  He hasn't had another stent fitted, he's not too clear on the details as to why (he had a sedative so is a bit woozy), but I expect all will be explained in the discharge paperwork, he says the consultant is about to write a letter.  So he'll be home several hours earlier than expected.

He said there are only 3 out of 5 patients there this just didn't turn up (how terrible is that?!), and another was sent straight home after the staff found out he'd driven himself there and was planning on driving home afterwards!  All of the patients are specifically told they cannot drive themselves, they aren't allowed to drive for a week after the procedure.  The patient claimed he had no other way of getting to and from the hospital.  Apart from anything else, if they did drive during the week following the procedure and were unfortunate enough to have an accident, their insurance would be invalid.  Not to mention that they may still have drugs from the procedure in their system, and the angiogram is done through an incision into a large artery, so if any pressure is put on it until it heals properly, it might reopen and they'll bleed to death! 😒😲

Just found out our next door neighbours have all got Covid again, the 2nd time this year, so we'll be avoiding them, not that we have close contact anyway, just chats over the garden fence.

The big day, and an added bit

 So it's the day of husband's angiogram, I'm sure it'll go fine.....well, I hope it will.  It's going to be a long day (also a quiet one!!) - I'd set my alarm for 05.30 as that's when husband wanted to get up, although I'm almost always awake by then anyway, but it would be sod's law that on this occasion I didn't wake up early if I didn't set it.  As it happens, I woke up about 04.20 bursting for a wee (shouldn't have had Horlicks yesterday evening), got back in bed but knew I wouldn't go back to sleep, so read the paper on my phone whilst snuggled up in my warm bed with a warm dog lying alongside me.  Husband says he slept pretty well, he's not worried about the angiogram and stent fitting as he's had them done twice before so knows the procedure.

As I mentioned before, I'm going to have another go at the Attendance Allowance forms, it'll be good to do them whilst husband isn't here, there'll be no noise!  Betty's no trouble at all when it's just her and me, she's quiet as a mouse.

I've not yet heard back from the Housing Department regarding our social housing application, submitted online nearly 4 weeks ago, so I think I'll chase them up as well.  I know these things take forever, especially post-Covid.

Speaking of Covid....both of us did lateral flow tests yesterday morning (at the request of the hospital) and both were negative - not that either of us have any symptoms or feel unwell, we don't.  I just hope husband doesn't catch it, or any other nasty bug, whilst he's in the hospital - it seems to be quite common to catch something in hospital, ironically.

And I really must get my Christmas cards written and sent - I've finished making them, and with all the postal strikes going on (think there's one today) I'd best get them in the post asap.  


I'm not really interested in what Harry and Meghan have to say, they're determined to be 'victims' and wash their dirty linen in public, and we don't have Netflix anyway.  But I did see a clip this morning, shown in the paper, showing the two of them sitting on a sofa and Meghan acting out how she 'curtsied' to the Queen on first meeting her, and laughing about it (although I thought Harry looked decidedly uncomfortable).  I just thought, how utterly disrespectful to the Queen that was of Meghan.  As for her tears and general behaviour......once an actress, always an actress.  Well, that's my opinion anyway, for what it's worth.

Thursday, 8 December 2022

Working to be less stressed

 I didn't have a restful day yesterday after all, lots to do and organise prior to husband going into hospital for his angiogram on Friday, but I did do it all at my own pace.  Quite a bit of it involved writing lists and form filling, so at least I was sitting down a lot of the time.  I was beginning to feel very stressed when I got up in the morning.....I need to know that I'm organised and everything is done or ready, else my mind can't settle.  I have to be organised, even more so as I get older, or it really stresses me out.  I did get husband involved in doing things, although that's not without its problems - e.g. I got him to make the dog food, but I have to tell him what to do (and more than once as he instantly forgets a lot of the time) every step of the way.  Which is frustrating.

I got the washing out and hung up first thing, then made a simple veg soup for lunch - using a couple of types of frozen mixed veg cooked in veg stock in the Multichef, with a splash of milk, some grated cheese and a shake of dehydrated potato mash to thicken towards the end.  After we'd eaten it, I put the rest in a plastic tub in the fridge, then re-used the Multichef pot to make a chicken and tomato-based stew with sage dumplings for dinner....I used the last of our homegrown tomatoes which I'd cooked to a sauce with onions and garlic a few weeks ago.  So easy lunch and dinner which I could just bung in the pot and cook away without any further involvement from me.

Then I finished off my shopping list for next week, we're going first thing this morning.  I was supposed to have a nurse appointment at the surgery at 9 am today, but they texted yesterday afternoon to cancel it, due to 'unforeseen circumstances'.  I did think about getting the shopping delivered next week, but sometimes things are out of stock and they don't provide an alternative, or the alternatives they send aren't what I would choose.  For example, I have lactose-free milk due to a lactose intolerance.....the supermarket once sent me that expensive Cravendale milk as a substitute - erm, that's not lactose-free, they'd have done better to send soya, oat or nut milk.  And 2 or 3 times the eggs they've sent have had a cracked one in the box, or I've been sent things with a very short shelf life left.  

I also made a start on the ghastly Attendance Allowance form, filling in all the easy bits.  Honestly, the form is really designed to trip you up, make things as difficult as possible to answer or confuse the hell out of you, they clearly don't want to actually grant any allowances.  Some of the questions are remarkably similar, I read them and thought 'haven't you just asked that already?' - they just use slightly different's almost like they're deliberately trying to get you to contradict yourself.  I'm still waiting for Age UK to get back to me with an appointment for an advisor to come and help me with the rest of the form.....I've both emailed and left a message on their answerphone.  I guess they must be really busy.  I've got until 4 Jan to send the form back (it's stated on the form) but what with all the postal strikes going on, I need to get it done asap.  I'll be sending it recorded delivery, as one of you advised, thank you.

Having had a good look through the form though, and bearing in mind the things the Age UK advisor I saw told me, I think I could probably fill it all in myself, if they don't get back to me in time.  So I might do that tomorrow, it'll occupy my mind whilst husband is in hospital.  I think - well, I am - more worried about husband's procedure than he is, he's just assuming it'll all go exactly like it did the last time (he's had 3 stents fitted, on 2 separate occasions, before).  All well and good, if it does turn out to be a case of narrowed arteries again, but his cardiologist did say he won't know for sure until he does the angiogram.

Wednesday, 7 December 2022

That's those out of the way

 Husband's 2 medical appointments went off without a hitch, thankfully, we got to both in plenty of time.  The first one, the echocardiogram which was in an NHS building on an industrial estate, was done quite quickly, leaving us more than enough time to get across Taunton (which is extremely busy with traffic) to the hospital.  Husband drank his pint of water in the car park and then we made our way to the urology testing department, which is the other end of the hospital to the car park - it's a huge general hospital with very long corridors and loads of departments and wards.  My hips were protesting by the time we reached where we had to go.  As husband's tests were going to take up to 2 hours, I opted to sit in the hospital M&S cafe which is near where he was going, rather than the corridor outside the test place.

The cafe was busy with loads of people, staff and patients, coming and going all the time.  I'd taken a book with me and thought I'd be happy to sit with a large latte and read or people watch.  Well, it was the noisiest place I'd been in a long time - as well as the constant chatter from everyone in the cafe, and people's phones going off all the time, there were the catering sounds from the cafe staff, and quite loud piano music.  I thought it was being played from a sound system, but it turned out to be an actual pianist, sitting partly hidden behind a screen.  But the noisiest thing of all was the constant back and forth of hospital staff pushing noisy rattling trolleys, equipment and patients along the corridors (the cafe is in a big open [indoors] space with a wide corridor alongside, you go inside the cafe to get your drinks and food and then come back out to the tables and chairs in the open concourse bit).  It was just one big cacophony of very loud sound - and I'm partially deaf!  By the time husband was finished and came to meet me, 1.5 hours later, I felt like my ears had been assaulted and my head was ears were still ringing hours later.  Mind you, poor husband had worse stuff going on, having to drink an extra 2 jugs(!!) of water - with a break in between - and have his bladder scanned whilst full, and then pee it out, have the amount measured and then his bladder scanned again once empty.  Twice.  On the way home, he said he felt like he didn't want another drink for 2 or 3 days 😂

Betty was so pleased to see us when we got home, we'd been out for nearly 6 hours, we don't normally leave her home alone for more than 4 hours.  She's absolutely fine left home alone, I always leave the radio on for her, she sleeps most of the time (I've asked our next door neighbour if she hears her at all and she always says nope).  I left her some food for her lunch, she'd eaten that.  And of course she has a bowl of fresh water all the time.

Both husband and I felt really tired by early evening, so we both had an early night.  I did attempt to read for a while, as I always do when I go to bed, but gave up after only a short while when my book fell off the bed and woke me (and Betty) up.

We're all having a quiet day today.  I think I'll put a veggie stew and dumplings in the slow cooker, I have washing to do and dog food to make, and my shopping list to finish.  Then this afternoon I'll go upstairs and make the last of the Christmas cards and write out those that need posting.

Tuesday, 6 December 2022

Leftovers pie and busy day today

 Yesterday I made a Sunday roast leftovers pie - leftover chicken, roast veggies and gravy in puff pastry.  Last night we had half of it with extra veg on the side, tonight the other half will be with chips.  We'll be out most of the day with husband's 2 separate hospital appointments, so I needed something quick and easy to just more or less bung in the oven when we get home.  I'm taking ham (for husband) and cheese (for me) rolls with us for lunch, plus a large bottle of water - husband has to drink a full pint after he comes out of his echocardiogram, to fill his bladder in readiness for the urinary flow tests for his prostate problems.  So by the time we get from one side of Taunton to the other, he'll be bursting for a pee, but will have to hold on until he's in the testing room at the hospital.  Rather him than me.  I suppose he could wait until we arrive at the hospital, and then down the water in one go.

It's turned really cold now and is set to get even colder apparently.....well, it is winter.  I hate being cold nowadays, following years of hot flushes and night sweats during the menopause.  Although I think on balance I'd rather be cold - at least I can put a thicker jumper on, or wrap up in a fleece blanket.  Having that horrible heat rise up your body into your face, dripping with sweat and feeling like you were permanently in a sauna wasn't fun!  And to think I used to laugh at my poor Mum and her best friend Doreen who were both always fanning themselves and sitting by open windows, we never think of those kind of things happening to us when we get older do we?  In fact, when we were teenagers we never really considered ever getting 'old'.....old to us was anyone over 30, wasn't it?!

I've sent an email to Age UK asking for a visit to help me with the AA form, sometime next week would be ideal, seeing as I'll be home all week whilst husband can't drive.

I made a few more Christmas cards yesterday, must get those that need to be posted sent off within the next couple of days.  We had our first Christmas card at the beginning of last was from my friend in Kent who sent it in the same envelope as my birthday card, to save on postage.  Good idea!

Did anyone watch Jeff Wayne's musical production of War of the Worlds the other evening?  It was on Sky Arts, not a new production, it was put on several years ago I think.  The Narrator was Liam Neeson (equally as good as Richard Burton) and it had several stars in it.....Marti Pellow (much as I liked him in WetWetWet, I have to say his voice wasn't up to much live on stage in this production....but he's got a lovely smile) and Jason Donovan as Parson Nathaniel - he over-acted his heart out, bless him, but he was quite good in spite of that!  Ricky Wilson, the lead singer of Kaiser Chiefs, played the Artilleryman, he was almost unrecognisable with a big bushy beard.  We'd recorded it and watched it Saturday night, seeing as the main Strictly show wasn't on because of the football.  I've always liked the WOTW music, my brother had the album when it first came out in the late 70s and played it to death, so we all got to know all the words!  I thoroughly enjoyed it, it made a nice change from the usual rubbish that's on after the main Strictly show......stupid game shows (I hate game shows) and films that everybody's seen umpteen times.

Sunday, 4 December 2022

Tree done

 So much for there being lots of extra stalls with Christmassy things on them at the artisan craft fair......the whole thing was actually smaller than it was when we last went back in the summer.  Still, I did manage to get a couple of nice handmade things for gifts.  Didn't see Marlene at all, which was a pity - never mind, I'm sure we'll get to meet up sometime.  I also got a calendar from the card shop (another doggy one, similar to this year's one) and did a necessary little bit of shopping whilst we were out.  Actually, I'm quite glad the craft fair was small, coz it was blimmin cold!

Betty's always so pleased to see us when we come back home, even if we've only been out a short while.  She always does the same thing - comes running to the front door with her whole body wagging, then immediately shoves her whole head (if she can get it in) into any bags I'm carrying - looking for food, although husband says she's checking for drugs! 😂😂  She knows she always gets a treat when we get in, so she follows me (actually, she herds me, like a sheepdog, nudging my legs from behind) into the kitchen where she knows the treats are kept.  I know I've said this a zillion times, but she really does make me laugh every day.

I decorated the tree, I'm pleased with it, it's quite minimalist......just baubles and a handful of extra hanging decorations that I had from last year.  It's pre-lit so I didn't have to spend ages twisting the lights round like last year.  My little collection of Christmas gonks standing at the bottom.  The side window has a white twiggy pre-lit little tree, to which I've added some silver and gold tiny baubles.  My pair of Nutcracker soldiers, a penguin and a tobogganing polar bear stand alongside.  And that's it for Christmas decorations this year.  My Aunt Sylvia would be turning in her grave, it's far too unshowy for her taste, every available surface would be decorated with something in her house 😁  Bless her.

December is my least favourite month, for many reasons.  I'm not dwelling on the anniversaries of 3 deaths during this Mum, my lovely friend Toni and my beloved Nanna.....but they are on my mind, obviously, although I'm not feeling as sad about it this year.  Everything is just so frantic and busy during December - and that's without the added stress this week of husband's hospital appointments.  I just don't like all the crowds everywhere we go, and adverts in your face (or your ears) trying to get you to spend loads of money - who's got loads to spend in the current economic climate?  Winter is definitely not my favourite season either, I hate the cold, rain, wind, ice, snow and short days.  I'm just glad that from the 22nd onwards, daylight hours will slowly start getting longer.  It's still a long time till Spring though.

So what's happening today?

 Both Betty and I had another very good night.....Betty woke up and changed positions a few times (she always does a little sort of grumbling sound when she moves to a different spot or changes position on the bed, which always wakes me up as I'm a very light sleeper).  Unlike how it normally is though, I went back to sleep fairly quickly afterwards - Betty of course falls back to sleep instantly.  I put it down to the CBD - for the past 3 nights both of us have had a dose of it.....a small one for Betty.  I used to take CBD regularly for joint pain and insomnia, it worked quite well for a time but eventually got to the stage where it wasn't working so well.....apparently this is quite common, your body gets used to the dosage, just like it does with prescription painkillers, eg,  and it means you need to up the dose.  All very well, but it's expensive stuff and comes in very small bottles, so I wasn't really prepared to keep it up, it would cost too much.  Having had a break from it of several months though, it seems to be working well again, so I'll keep using it again (just me, Betty won't be needing it every night now) for as long as I can.  Hopefully, it'll help with my hip pain as well as helping me sleep.

So today we're off to the town for the monthly artisan craft market, with apparently more Christmas-themed stalls, being December.  It'd be nice if we get to see Marlene (Poppy Patchwork) there.  We'll be getting there around 10-10.30 if you're reading this, Marlene, we park in Angel Place.  Then when we get home, I'll be dressing the Christmas tree and the hall windowsill.....husband keeps muttering under his breath about it, but it just washes over me, he can be a Grinch as much as he likes and I'll do what I want to do.  It'll brighten things up, the weather has been so dull and dreary lately.  But doesn't it make the rooms look bare when the decorations get taken down and put away after Christmas?!

Busy week this week, what with husband's 2 appointments for tests, one for his heart and the other for his bladder on Tuesday, both on the same day and in different places, but at least they're both in Taunton and hopefully we should, if everything goes to plan, be able to get to both without too much trouble.  Fingers crossed!  And then his angiogram on Friday.  And I'll need to do a bit of shopping Weds or Thurs, to ensure we've got enough supplies to keep us going whilst he can't drive the following week.  I must ring the Age UK lady to see if she can come perhaps next week to help me with the AA form - I shall start filling it in this week - well, the easy bits that I can do myself.  I've been putting it off a bit, because it is so daunting.....form filling nowadays does my head in.

Saturday, 3 December 2022


 Betty is totally back to normal now (being her usual naughty self!), I'm glad to say.  Her toe only bothers her occasionally, she's not licking it all the time.  I guess the antibiotics and pain meds are working.

No fog this morning, which is was beginning to feel like the fog was permanent.  I've got washing to get out of the machine but debating whether or not to put it on the rain forecast but it's very cold and cloudy, I'm doubtful that it will dry on the line.  I might have to freeze the carrot cake I made for our neighbour with the birthday today, it seems she may have gone away for the weekend.  Good job I haven't yet iced it - I made the frosting last night but put it in the fridge rather than coating the cake then.  Oh, and using full fat branded soft cheese and proper block butter seems to have worked, the frosting isn't runny at all, just the right consistency.  The frosting will keep in the fridge for a few days.

Sue of A Smaller and Simpler Life has put on a link to a Christmas short film on her blog today......oh my word, it's a right tear jerker but so beautiful, do go and have a look (make sure you have a box of tissues handy).

Had my hair cut yesterday and it feels so much better.  I need to colour it at some point, I'm still not ready to embrace the grey fully.  It was odd watching Strictly last night, which means the results show is on tonight (bloody football throwing the schedules out), I must try not to forget!  I've got a little ulcer in my mouth which is stinging, think I've got some Bonjela.  And talking of not forgetting, I must remember to ring the Age UK lady to come and help me with the forms.  

This blog post is a mishmash of inconsequential little bits.....sorry, my mind is jumping around today and there's not much newsworthy stuff to talk about!

Friday, 2 December 2022

She's better

 Thanks for your comments, Betty had a much better afternoon yesterday, although she wouldn't eat any of her dinner......which was a bit unfortunate as we'd put her medication in it.  As she's supposed to have the antibiotics twice a day, I put another tablet inside a rolled up piece of ham - she ate that!  She slept very well last night, which meant I did too - we'd both had a dose of CBD oil.  She's not obsessively licking her foot anymore either.

This morning I'm making a carrot cake for a neighbour's birthday - I'd made one last month, we have a coffee and cake morning with this neighbour about once a month and she really enjoyed the cake (she asked to keep the remaining half of it!) so thought I'd do a whole one for her.  Her son, DiL and baby granddaughter are coming for the weekend so it'll be for all of them.  I'll try to do better with the cream cheese frosting though.....last time it was too runny and slid off the cake (not that it affected the taste, just the appearance) - I think it was because the cream cheese was a half fat one, and the butter was one of the spreadable ones in a tub, so had oil blended with it instead of being pure butter.  This time I'm using full fat cheese and pure butter.  I'll have to think of something else to put in the oven along with the cake, I can't just have it on for one thing.  Maybe some sausage rolls or little savoury tarts, I've got 2 or 3 packs of pastry in the freezer.  Or some shortbread for Christmas.....

Having my hair cut this afternoon - whilst longer hair which covers my ears and neck is a good thing now the weather's got so much colder, when it's too long it's just flat and boring - my hair is so fine it's got no body so needs a lot of product to give it any height - I like it spiky on top.  I'll just have to wear a scarf when we go out.....not a hardship, I've got loads.

It's been foggy here for several days now, and it lingers all day - just opened the curtains as it's just starting to get light and it's foggy again.  I really don't like winter 😕

There's the monthly craft market in the town on Sunday, as it's December they're going to have more Christmassy stalls so we'll go and have a look at that.

Thursday, 1 December 2022

Poor Betty - edited

 The vet prescribed a sedative tablet for Betty, husband had to go and collect it as it had to be given an hour before the appointment.  I would say it only just took the edge off her anxiety - although on the way home she slept all the way, so perhaps she should have had it a little earlier!

He had to cut all of her claw away, as it was completely disengaged from the quick - I was holding her tightly as she was wriggling like mad.  She yelped and her toe bled all over the vet's table, he dressed it and bandaged it up with a bright orange bandage.  He gave her some antibiotics and said to continue with the painkilling medication (still got half the bottle left) and the nail strengthening tablets.  

Once home she took a while to settle and wasn't at all happy with the bandaged foot, kept holding it up and trying to bite the bandage off.  Luckily we had a bottle of a doggy calming spray and squirted that on her foot, which seemed to do the trick.  She ate her dinner with her meds and then slept with her head on my lap for an hour.

She did sleep through most of the night, the after effects of the sedative and painkilling meds no doubt.  However, this morning she is frantic with anxiety, obsessively licking at her foot continually.  She started pulling the bandage off early this morning, we took it off (the vet said it could be taken off this morning).  Husband was telling her off, trying to get her to stop licking the foot, I said he needs to calm down and not shout at her as it's just making her worse (yes you're right, Gemma's Person, she is picking up on his anxiety).  I've been trying to distract her, which works for a short while.  I can see us having to go back to the vet for some more anti-anxiety stuff though, we can't keep on like this indefinitely, none of us can.


As she was stuck in an obsessive licking and biting her paw cycle, I thought I'd try giving her some of my CBD oil - after first checking with the vet!  He said he has no personal experience of it, but knows of plenty of people who give it to their pets for calming anxiety and easing arthritis pain.  I gave her a few squirts and she is now lying peacefully on the sofa, dozing - and this despite a terrible drilling noise coming from next door, sounds like they're trying to drill several spy holes into our connecting wall 😡.  I hope they won't be doing it all day!

Wednesday, 30 November 2022

Another problem

 Something else to add to my stress levels this morning......Betty's split claw that we took her to the vets about last week, has now split completely open from top to bottom, totally exposing the quick.  It's bothering her even more now, understandably.  We've rung and got an appointment for 3.45 this afternoon, I've also asked for the vet to ring us back asap for some advice prior to bringing her in.  She's very anxious about going to the vets, she really doesn't like it at all (probably because nearly every time we take her she has something horrible done to her, so it's a bit like going to the dentist for us!) and thus isn't very co-operative, whines and strains at the lead to try and get out.  I'm wondering if there's something we can do or give her, or they can give her as soon as we arrive, in order to reduce her anxiety (ironically, I've got plenty of anti-anxiety pills - which I shall be taking by the handful today!! - but obviously they're for humans, not dogs).  She's not very happy at all this morning, and was extremely restless during the night, keeping me awake, so she's clearly suffering.  I hate to see her in pain or under the weather, bless her, it really makes my stomach churn.

I've managed to book a haircut with my lovely hairdresser neighbour for Friday afternoon, so that's something positive.

I've done washing this morning, although it won't be going out on the line - it's misty, damp and cold so it won't dry outside, it'll have to go on the airers upstairs.  I've also made 2 pizzas - well, put toppings on 2 bought pizza is for dinner tonight, the other will be frozen, or possibly eaten cold for lunch tomorrow.  I also used up some sun dried tomatoes in oil, some walnuts, finely grated mature Cheddar, garlic puree and dried basil to make a kind of red pesto - just blitzed everything up in my mini processor and added some seasoning.  We'll have it stirred through a pack of fresh spinach and ricotta filled pasta for tomorrow's dinner, with stir fried courgettes and mushrooms.

Apparently there's going to be a big shortage of fresh turkeys this December, because of the bird flu.  Just as well we're not buying one - not that we ever do anyway, and especially not at this time of year, far too expensive.  

Tuesday, 29 November 2022

Successful birthday lunch, and some answers

 The meal we went out for on my birthday was pretty much a disaster, for one reason or another, and husband had done nothing in the way of getting me anything, not even any flowers.  So I decided this morning we were going out for lunch....and then he had the cheek to say "well ok, if you've got the money"!!  Honestly, he leaves me gobsmacked sometimes - I did point out he was paying, since he'd made no effort to buy me a present, nor had he booked us in anywhere for lunch on the day (it was my last minute choice to go for the meal on my birthday, since he'd made no plans).  And this despite him taking his best mate to town 2 days before my birthday to have their regular brunch!  I can't remember the last time he took me out for a meal, prior to the rubbish birthday lunch.  With all the stressful stuff I've got coming up, with arrangements for appointments, horrendous forms to fill in, and things to organise for when husband is unable to drive for a week following his angiogram, I wanted a little bit of something nice.....the calm before the storm, if you like.

I chose to go to our other favourite garden centre, Sanders World.  It was taken over earlier this year and now focuses much more on home things and gifts, it's a huge place.  The restaurant, which was nice anyway, is now even better - as well as tables and chairs, it has lots of comfy sofas and armchairs and bookshelves everywhere filled with books old and new - some to buy (big coffee table type books) and lots to just browse through whilst you're eating and drinking.  In previous years the store has had nice Christmas displays, so I wanted to see what this year's was going to be like, given the change of ownership - not that I was intending to buy any decorations, but it's nice to look at them all.

The lunch was delicious, happily - I had a bacon, brie & cranberry toasted panini (well I did say the other day it was my favourite sandwich filling!) with nice salad, and a really lovely huge cup of frothy coffee.  Husband had a coronation chicken sandwich (his favourite) with salad.  And the restaurant wasn't very busy, thank goodness.  We had a look round afterwards, the Christmas display is massive, certainly bigger than it used to be, it was interesting looking at all the displays and gift things - and no I didn't buy anything.  However, I did get a new pair of slippers (reduced in a sale) and some nice birthday cards - I haven't really got time - or even the brain capacity - right now to make any, and there are 3 birthdays in December.  So my sort-of delayed birthday lunch treat was very nice.

To answer some recent comments.....HH, our garden's not really big enough for Betty to charge around - too many flower and veg beds and not enough grass.  But what I shall do is take her in the field behind our house - that way, I can let her off the lead as soon as we get in there and she can run around to her heart's content.  She'll get muddy though, but that's a small price to pay.  And yes HH and Joy, the AA form is horrendous!  One good thing though, it's recommended that you attach any medical correspondence in support of your application, and husband has today had a letter from his cardiologist following their appointment a couple of weeks ago, which gives precise details of his heart conditions and current problems, so that'll be a really useful attachment.  Sue, I had considered finding a professional dog walker but discounted it in the end - if anything should happen, eg Betty getting away from them and getting lost, or something else, I'd never forgive myself.  There was a report on FB a little while ago about a so-called professional dog walker who supposedly 'lost' 2 dogs in her care - they allegedly got spooked by something and ran off into the woods, never to be seen again.  The implication was that the person may have sold the dogs - which were pedigrees.  I'm sure true professionals are in the majority, but I'm not taking any chances with my beautiful baby.

Joy, you wondered whether husband might subconsciously be putting up obstacles so that I give in and do the jobs, I don't think so.  I'm sure it's just that he's so bloody disorganised and extremely forgetful - everything I tell him he forgets practically instantly.  I thought it was a side effect of some of his heart meds, which are notorious for causing brain fog, forgetfulness and tiredness, and I said as much to his doctor.  The doctor agreed, but said there was also another explanation - as his heart isn't working at full capacity, it may also be a case of the heart not pumping enough blood and oxygen to his brain.  Which was something I hadn't considered.  So now, when I have to repeat something I've already told him 6 times, I just try to take a deep breath and calmly tell him yet again.  It's downright bloody frustrating though, if I had a pound for every time I have to repeat something to him, every single day, numerous times a day, I'd be a millionaire in no time.

Monday, 28 November 2022

Frazzled brain and sleepless nights coming up

 The mornings are when I have most energy, so I try to get as much as possible done then.  This morning I got the washing out on the line first thing, then made the chicken meatloaf and prepped all the veggies for our one-day-late Sunday dinner.  I did double quantities of all the veggies, so the excess only needs reheating for another day, along with some of the meatloaf.  There's enough of the meatloaf to have reheated for another dinner, plus enough to have cold for sandwiches a couple of days this week.  We then got the Christmas tree out of the box, all the branches spread out, the lights checked and the tree put in position.  I'd bought a new tree, the one I got last year was a bit too small and, after a bit of searching around indoors and in his garage, husband remembered we'd actually given it to a charity shop after last Christmas.  I'm not decorating it until next Sunday, the 4th - that was my Aunt Sylvia's birthday so I'm decorating the tree every December on that date, in her memory.

I gave husband a couple of small jobs to do, which he did.....the trouble is though, everything I ask him to do he can't seem to do by himself without asking me a dozen questions, so I have to waste time explaining to him where things go, how I want the job done, which way up, how things fit, etc etc.  Which is why in the past I've always just done it all myself, it's easier and quicker!  But I can't do everything myself now, so he's got to help whether he (or I!!) like it or not.

We had a series of appointment letters in the post and a phone call today, they all came at once for the same couple of days......typical.  Husband now has appointments for an echocardiogram, and a urinary flow test (for his prostate problems), both Tuesday of next week, one in the morning and one after lunch.  Both in Taunton but in different places, he should if everything goes according to plan be able to do both.  I had an appointment for my diabetes review come in, for Friday of next week.  However, husband also had a phone call this afternoon to say the hospital have a cancellation appointment for him to have his angiogram.....also Friday next week.  So I'll have to rearrange my diabetes review, which is fine.

And on top of that, the Attendance Allowance forms also arrived in the post today, which was quick.  I've had a brief look, it's another 30-page form, just having a quick glance through it gave me a headache, I'm so glad the Age UK advisor said she'd come and help, I'd dread having to do it by myself.

Whilst I'm glad everything is happening quickly, and before Christmas, the sheer logistics of having to organise everything and all in a short space of time will leave me frazzled, and give me a few more sleepless nights before then, I can feel the stress building already.  Neighbour J has said she'll take husband to hospital, but I might need to arrange for someone to pick him up later.  I'll have to do the dog walking too, husband won't be able to for the week following his angiogram as he won't be able to hold Betty's lead (the angiogram is done via an incision in his wrist) - the last time he had it done his arm was heavily bruised and sore for a week.  I hope my hips are ok for then, as it'll be difficult to hold the lead and a walking stick.  Betty's a strong dog, she's fine on the lead until she sees something, a pheasant or rabbit eg, when she wants to be off chasing it.  

Luckily, there's only one thing on the calendar for the week after husband's angiogram (when he'll be unable to drive for a week)'s a Christmas fair I was hoping to go to.  It's possible though that I might be able to cadge a lift with a neighbour, who I am sure will also want to go to it.  Oh, and I also need a haircut!!

A free week so lots can get done

 Yesterday I ended up feeling absolutely shattered, as a result of all that's been going on recently I think.  I was going to make a minced chicken and stuffing meatloaf with lots of roast veggies for dinner, but was just too tired, so we ended up having jacket spuds with beans and cheese.  I slept fairly well last night and feel much better today, so we'll have our Sunday dinner today.

For once, we have a whole week with nothing on the calendar.....unless there are any appointments that husband has forgotten to tell me about or write on the calendar, which wouldn't surprise me one bit.  So it'll be a good week for getting stuck in to more decluttering and tip/charity shop trips.  Which will please husband.....not.  He's beginning to get back to his usual routine of doing nothing unless I prod him - I said this morning that it would be nice if he got up in the morning and asked "What needs doing today?" rather than coming down, putting the damn telly on and just sitting watching that, or playing chess or looking at cars on his computer all day.  I can (and do) always find something to do, so this week I'm going to get him doing a few jobs every day.  He doesn't have to do them all at once, I've told him repeatedly to do a bit and then stop for a rest.  Which is exactly what I do, although when I sit down I'm generally writing a menu or shopping list, or list of jobs that need doing, or doing a bit of banking.

According to the weather forecast, the incessant rain should be letting up this week, it looks fairly settled, albeit cold, for the week so I should be able to get washing out on the line.  Hopefully, we'll also be able to take Betty to Dunster beach one day, we all need a breath of fresh air and she's in desperate need of a good run about.  I'll have to use my walking stick, my hips and balance have been terrible lately and I'm liable to fall over walking on sand or uneven ground.  When I saw my GP to get the results of my hip xrays a few weeks back, I asked him if they showed up any osteoporosis - he said no, other than a DEXA scan the only way to find out if I have osteoporosis is if I fall over and break my try not to fall over!  His exact words!  I'll take a flask of coffee and a sandwich for us and some water and treats for Betty, which we'll have in the car overlooking the beach.  Must check the tide times before we go.

Not heard from the Council yet as to whether our housing application was successful, still, it's only been 2 weeks and I'm sure they're behind on work - everyone else is.  I'm hoping the Attendance Allowance forms arrive soon, the lady on the phone said to allow up to 2 weeks for them to come, although it should be quicker than that.....there are the postal strikes to take into consideration though.

I had to laugh at the Chancellor telling people they could save pennies by turning down their heating a notch (that's assuming people can afford to have it on in the first place), turning off radiators in unused rooms, taking shorter showers etc.....I bet he doesn't have to do any of that!  And doesn't he think most of us ordinary non-millionaires already do all that?!

Sunday, 27 November 2022

Still veggie-ish

 So how is my vegetarian diet going?  I can't really call myself vegetarian actually - I eat fish around twice a week (so pescatarian) but was having mainly homemade veggie dishes the rest of the time.  However, I began to worry that I wasn't getting enough protein - I've stopped eating lots of veggie pulse dishes....pulses are a bit of a 'meh' thing for me, I'm not really keen on the earthy mealy texture or taste.  I'd gone off eggs a bit too, just eaten too many recently I think.  So I now eat chicken once or twice a week as well as the fish.  And about once every 3 weeks, I do have a bacon sandwich for a Sunday breakfast - well, who can resist the smell of bacon?  I'm having one today actually, bacon, brie and cranberry sauce, one of my absolute favourite combinations.  But on the whole I do eat mainly vegetarian things, which I generally make myself.  I've tried a few ready-made veggie things and am mainly not keen.....I do quite like Linda McC's rosemary and red onion sausages, although I prefer Heck chicken sausages.  And there's a brand (I forget which one) of veggie duck spring rolls - no duck but jackfruit instead - which are absolutely delicious, and you really can't tell that they're not duck.  I do like some of the vegetable burger things - I mean vegetables in breadcrumbs, not mock meat burgers made with some weird fake meat thing.  I don't buy the veggie burgers very often, as it's easy to make my own....just a bit more time consuming, so I generally have a packet of bought ones in the freezer for a quick meal when time is short or I don't have the energy to make my own and have run out of frozen homemade ones.

I don't miss eating red meat at all - which is quite surprising to me as previously lamb was my favourite meat, closely followed by roast gammon.  I used to like medium rare steak years ago, but wouldn't touch it now, nor roast beef or a beef casserole, it just doesn't appeal to me anymore.  Nor would I now eat liver or kidney, although before I really liked both.  Minced beef, in a cottage pie or bolognese, eg, I did used to like but for some reason it always gave me indigestion.  I don't know why, minced chicken doesn't.

So I'm very happy with the way I eat now and can't see myself ever going back to eating red meat.  Husband continues to eat it, I'm sure he won't ever give up red meat.  I still cook it for him, I'm not squeamish about handling it, I just don't want to eat it myself.

Saturday, 26 November 2022

A minimal Christmas

 Thanks for the comments, as usual.  Re hospital transport - I looked up the transport section on our hospital website, it says that it's for patients who need support such as oxygen on the journey, or for people who cannot walk.  As neither of these apply to husband (he won't be unable to walk after his procedure), I'm guessing he won't be eligible for hospital transport.  There is a helpline number, so I might get him to ring during the week.  There is a community transport thing in the next village, run by volunteers (a neighbour used to volunteer), it's not free though (not that that matters) but you have to have a bus pass to be able to use it (I don't know why).  Husband hasn't got a bus pass, never bothered applying for one as there are no buses nearby!  It depends really on the time and date of his procedure - if it's a morning one, then he should be able to come home mid afternoon, providing there are no complications, so neighbour J may be able to bring him home as well - she said she will if I go with her and we can't get anyone else.  And there are other people we can ask.

Husband is being his usual Grinch self about Christmas, but I shall ignore him and do what I want.  After initially feeling ambivalent about it, I've now decided I do want the tree up, with different decorations to last year - I want it just simple with lights and green, red and gold baubles.  I've checked the lights from last year, they're fine, so I just need to get some red and gold baubles, I already have green ones.  I'll also have my little glittery metal ready decorated tree (bought that way) and my lovely Christmas gonks on the hall windowsill.  That'll be it, I'm not putting up any other decorations.  When I was a teenager, I spent every Christmas with my lovely Aunt Sylvia, she absolutely adored Christmas and put up so many decorations in her lounge and front garden that it was like a Winter Wonderland, she went all out.  She used to say she knew it looked tacky but she loved it anyway!  She would also play all the cheesy Christmas songs really loudly all through December.  Which is probably where I get my love of Christmas songs from.  And I shall watch my favourite Christmas films, Love Actually and Elf, much to husband's disgust - well he doesn't have to watch, but he always does!

For Christmas lunch husband will have beef, I've ordered him a small joint in the Christmas shop which is being delivered the week before Xmas.  I'll have a salmon and king prawn pie, I'll make it myself with puff pastry (I don't make the pastry!), the salmon, prawns and pastry are in the freezer already.  We managed to find a yellow-stickered side of salmon the other day, reduced to under £5 which was a bargain, we cut it up and froze it straight away.

Friday, 25 November 2022


 Thank you everyone for your lovely comments, and helpful tips.  Good idea to send the forms by recorded delivery, I'll do that, thanks.

I know we haven't got it yet so am not counting my chickens, but I feel so much better already after the lovely Age UK advisor said she thought we would almost certainly get Attendance Allowance.  And when (if!) we get that, I should apply for Carers Allowance as I'm probably entitled to that as well......the forms for which she will also come and help me fill in.  It just seems incredible that all the stuff I've been doing for husband for months and months (such as reminding him every day to take his meds, carrying cups of tea for him as he's likely to spill them, grabbing his arm to steady him when he staggers because of balance problems, and dozens of other things) are things that mean we're eligible for benefits and could have been claiming them ages ago.  I just didn't know about it, I thought that to be eligible, husband would have to be unable to walk more than 100 yards, or be unable to wash or dress himself (although his dress sense leaves a lot to be desired!).

It takes a lot of worry off my shoulders (or it will do if we do get the benefits), as the windfall lump sum pension payment husband got 2 years ago is fast dwindling away.  We'd hoped that it would tide us over until I receive my State Pension, but as that's still 3 years away and with the cost of living constant rises, it certainly won't last that long, we'll be lucky if it lasts another year.

Husband had his telephone pre-op assessment yesterday, he put the phone on loudspeaker so I could hear and contribute, as he was unable to answer some of the nurse's questions.  She didn't have a date for his procedure, but said it should be within 4-6 weeks, so hopefully just before Christmas, she said.  She also asked if he was willing to accept a cancellation or very short notice appointment, he said yes.  Just as well I've done the Christmas shop online already, as he won't be allowed to drive for a week after the op.  A neighbour has already offered to take him to hospital on the day, and will collect him if we can't get anyone else to - it'll probably be dark by the time he's allowed home and she doesn't like driving in the dark.  Understandable, the hospital is about 45 mins drive away and not a direct route.  I'm sure we'll find someone else to help.

I used my big slow cooker to bake some potatoes yesterday, I managed to fit 7 in, on a piece of baking parchment so they didn't stick.  I did them for 5 hours on High, and they were cooked perfectly, even had crispy skins, although not as crispy as if done in the oven.  I've kept 2 out for today's lunch, the rest I've frozen, to be zapped in the microwave when we have them.

We've got the plumber arriving at 9 am to fit a new part to the central heating, then we're going shopping.  I'll make sure I stock up on things like coffee, tea, milk, dog food etc, so I've got enough in for when husband can't drive.  I need to rearrange the freezer and make a bit more space to put the extra milk and stuff in, so that's my first job.

Thursday, 24 November 2022

At last some help

 Well, my meeting with the Age UK advisor was very productive.....Angela was a really lovely, kind and extremely helpful lady who bent over backwards to try and help.  She said my social housing application was fine, and then we moved onto financial matters.  In her opinion, husband will almost certainly be eligible for Attendance Allowance, which could then open the door for further benefits.  She gave me lots of tips for filling in the AA forms, such as ring the helpline and ask for a form to be sent out rather than filling it out online.....the reason being, if you fill out a paper form and send it off straight away, it is date stamped upon receipt and any successful claim will be backdated to that date.  Whereas if you do it online, the form will hang about for weeks and weeks before it gets passed to the right department and will only be dated from the date it actually reaches that department, not from when you submitted it!  And delays are currently around 4-8 weeks....meaning if you're successful, you will lose out on several weeks of payments.  She also said to give Age UK a ring when I receive the form, and she or one of her colleagues will come out to our home and help me fill it in.  She said it's important to fill out all sections as if it were husband's worst day, but she said not to worry, she or whoever comes will help with that.  She had lots of other useful tips and information, she couldn't have been more helpful.  I feel much more positive now I'm finally getting some help and support.  

The session was held in a local village hall where they also have a drop in coffee and cake morning for everyone who has memory problems, for whatever health reason, and their carers, with plenty of helpers to discuss things with, it was being held whilst I was seeing the advisor.  Whilst I could go to it if I wanted (husband most certainly wouldn't), and everyone working or volunteering there seemed incredibly nice (e.g. I was welcomed and offered a cuppa and slice of cake as soon as I walked in), it's not really my thing.  The room was full of mostly old people (aged 75+), around 2 dozen women with a couple of men, with a very few younger women, perhaps 3 or 4, who were clearly daughters, or possibly carers.  So really it was like a seniors social club.  As old as I am (63), I don't actually consider myself old yet!  One of the organisers was trying to give a talk and some important information about an upcoming event, but kept getting interrupted by the 2 old men, cracking 'jokes' and making stupid comments......why is it always men who do that?  And why do they feel the need to prove they're hilariously funny and smart?  (They're not).  So it's not something I'll be attending.

Today husband has his telephone pre-op assessment, postponed from last week because the nurse was off sick.  He's not been given a date for the angiogram yet, perhaps they'll tell him today on the phone.  I wish they'd hurry up about it, I need to make arrangements for someone to take him to the hospital and pick him up again when he's ready to come home.  I shall also need to make sure I've got enough shopping in, or do it online or get a neighbour to take me, and rearrange any appointments either of us have around that time, as husband won't be able to drive for a long for depends on what he has done.

I've had my diabetes review results online, all seems fine, not much change from last year, but I still have to go see the nurse next week to discuss it all.  I also have another problem which I need to discuss with her, it may or may not be diabetes related - my fingers and thumbs, from the first or second joint, keep going completely white, bloodless, freezing cold and painful, which makes it a bit difficult to do anything using my hands until it wears off.  I had a work colleague who had this, it was Raynauds Syndrome in her case and I think was related to her rheumatoid arthritis.  It's not a major problem (just another one to add to the ever-growing list!!), more of an annoyance really.

Tuesday, 22 November 2022

Cooking to keep me occupied and sane

 Thank you all so much for the support, it's so welcome.  I wish I had the same kind of support in real life....or any support, come to that.

I'm just totally pissed off with everything at the moment, it's all really getting me down.  So yesterday I did what I love doing and keeps me occupied - I spent ages cooking.  I had a block of pastry to use up (took it out of the freezer 2 or 3 days ago, got sidetracked and didn't use it).  I needed to have the oven on yesterday to cook battered cod steaks for dinner, which we were having with new potatoes, coleslaw and salad, but didn't want to put the oven on just for the cod.  I knew there were 2 very small smoked haddock fillets in the freezer, and a bag of king prawns.  I also had loads of eggs - one of our neighbours keeps hens and has tons of eggs (I thought they stopped laying in winter?) so keeps giving us a dozen at a time - very welcome.  So I made a smoked haddock and prawn quiche, with sweetcorn and Cheddar, it's cut into 6 portions, 2 for tonight's dinner and the rest frozen.  There was a little pastry left, along with a portion of cooked apple in the fridge, so I used it to make a little crumble-topped apple & sultana tart, which will do husband for pudding for 2 days.  I also baked some potatoes, so every bit of space on both oven shelves was used.

I only use my oven 2 or 3 times a week now - before the energy price rises, it used to be nearly every day - the other days I use the CleverChef or microwave, or both.  I read somewhere the other day that someone had made bread in their slow cooker, so thought I'd give that a go.  They'd tried using both their biggest slow cooker with the bread in a bread tin, and just putting the dough in the slow cooker itself (lined with a silicone liner, I think).  Both ways worked well.....just remembered, it was Thrifty Lesley who has her own blog and runs a couple of budget cooking pages on Facebook, she does come up with some really interesting frugal recipes.  I thought I'd give it a go - I have 3 slow cookers - small, medium and large, I used the biggest one which my bread tin fits into, luckily.  She makes the dough (just a normal white bread recipe) and puts it in the slow cooker overnight, then switches it on in the morning when she gets up.  Which is what I did, although I used half white/half wholemeal flour and a handful of mixed seeds - it worked really well, although next time I think I'll extend the cooking time by another 20 mins or so.  The bread had a lovely flavour (from the long overnight proving) and a nice open crumb.  I'll definitely be doing it again, it's a great idea to be able to cook bread in the economical slow cooker rather than the expensive oven.  Sorry, I didn't think to take a photo, I'll try to remember next time.

Tomorrow it's the Age UK advice session in the village hall in a nearby village.  I've had dealings with Age UK before and they are really kind and helpful, so I'm hoping to get some good answers.  Husband will have to take me as it's not in walking distance (I can't walk far anyway) but he's not coming in with me - I need to talk to them alone without him butting in all the time, he can't keep silent to save his life.

I don't know if this is a taste of things to come, but we had several power cuts yesterday evening - each one lasting just a minute or two, the power coming back on for 10 mins or so and then going off again.  Once it was back on, the lights kept flickering too.  We frequently get power cuts here anyway, but usually only one at a time, not several.  Well, at least it gave us a chance to test out our new battery lights we bought a few weeks ago, for just this sort of occurrence.

Sunday, 20 November 2022

Straight talking

 Thank you for all the lovely supportive comments lately, the ones on my most recent post aren't being published as I deleted that post.  And I've had some really nice emails too, thanks for those and my apologies for not replying individually.

However, over the past few months I've also had a few not so nice comments (mostly anonymous, of course!) and even emails, including one or two comments and emails from fellow well-known bloggers who I've always followed and respected.  None of the 'not nice' comments get published (after all, that is my prerogative) and I don't even mention them.  

What I want to say to people who read my blog is that my life and what happens is just that - MY life.  It's not yours, and nor do I respond to things in my life the same way that everyone else does - none of us do!  If you've had a very long and happy life and marriage - well that's lovely.....unfortunately not everyone is blessed the same way.  And we certainly don't all cope with things the same way - what a boring life it would be if we were all clones, sort of Stepford Wives.  So please don't judge me based on YOUR experiences, nor TELL me how I should respond or what I should/shouldn't be doing!

I have few friends nearby (mainly because of where we live, and my lifelong trust issues) - the relationship with my 'best' friend is dead and I'm desperately sad at how it ended.  My family don't live near me and, in any case, has been fraught with difficulties lately.  As I've said before, I get no support at all and I often feel like I'm drowning.  I am at my lowest ebb ever at the moment.  But I've struggled to get through difficulties my entire life - I'm a fighter and a strong independent woman (although it doesn't feel like it right now) and I WILL get through this and carry on.

I write this blog partly because I like to have a record of things - such as caravan stuff - but also to get the bad stuff and things that are worrying me off my chest, seeing as I now have nobody close enough to me to actually talk to.  However, I'm not going to be documenting every bad or irritating thing that happens now, because I no longer feel able to - even though it's my blog and it's entirely up to me what I write.  In fact, I won't be writing much at all.

There's blue sky and the sun is trying to come out, although showers are forecast on and off all day, so I don't think I'll chance putting my washing out.

Friday, 18 November 2022

Big (ish) news

 Betty's foot seems better today, she's not limping anymore and isn't licking it as obsessively as she was yesterday.  The medication is helping, I guess.  I hate to think of her in pain or being unwell.

We got a lot done yesterday, took 2 old computers and a bag of rags (husband's old clothes!) to the tip, and 2 more bags of clothes and shoes and another full of books to the charity shop.  Did a small top-up shop as well - honestly, the prices never stop rising do they?  The price of this little top-up haul was about as much as we used to pay for a full week's shopping.  Husband was pleased to hear in the Chancellor's mini budget that his pension will be going up by 10.1% next April, a decent rise on the previous year, but I always think well every little helps anyway, regardless of the amount.  Of course, there's the Council tax going up, as well as everything else, so we may not see much of the rise.

The big news is......I've submitted the housing application forms, along with uploading the required documentation to prove our identities and address.  I checked through the forms again carefully, making a further couple of amendments, and decided that I'm happy with what I've put so may as well submit them, rather than waiting another week before I see the Age UK advisor.  It's going to be a long process anyway, the Council housing website states that there are many more applicants than there are properties available, so unless we have urgent requirements for housing (such as homelessness or urgent medical need), we could be waiting up to 5 years!  So I thought the sooner I submit the application, the better.  So I very much doubt we'll be moving anytime soon (I would prefer not to move in the winter anyway), but that's fine with me - it gives us more time to declutter and downsize all our belongings, and to save up for the moving costs.

I'm still going to see the Age Uk advisor next week, I'll take a copy of the housing application to see what they think (I can amend it online anytime), and perhaps find out some information about benefits.  We currently claim no benefits whatsoever as I don't think we're entitled - as far as I can see, we don't fit the criteria, but I can't say I understand the rules very well and a trained advisor may think differently, or know of some benefits that we may be eligible for.

Husband didn't have his telephone pre-op assessment yesterday, he had a call in the morning to say the person doing it was off sick, so it's been rearranged for next week.

I'm back to using my walking stick when we go out anywhere, hips are hurting so much and I'm so unsteady on my feet.

Thursday, 17 November 2022

Poor Betty

 We couldn't get started with the decluttering and sorting yesterday morning, as we had to take Betty to the vet.  Whilst out with husband on her morning walk, she'd managed to break one of her back claws quite badly, it was obviously bothering her as she was limping on that leg and kept licking her foot obsessively.  One of her dew claws was also broken, not sure if that happened at the same time, although she did lick it occasionally, it didn't seem to be hurting her as much as the back claw and didn't look as bad.  The vet trimmed up her broken claws as best he could, and trimmed some of the others as well.  He said some of her claws are splitting or flaky (I'd noticed that as well), so as well as an antibiotic injection and drops, he's also given us some capsules to strengthen her claws.  He also said she's put on a bit of weight, which is most likely caused by not enough exercise lately.....what with husband's breathlessness and my mobility issues, Betty's been having shorter walks.  So he said if we can't walk her more, then we should cut down her food a bit to compensate.  Applies to me and husband too!  Vet bill was nearly £100, we do have pet insurance but the excess is £100 so didn't cover us.  Still, she's a beloved member of our family so we pay what we have to.

One of the things I want to get rid of is our collection of old defunct computers - one desktop and two laptops.  They obviously don't work and are old and probably obsolete now, so I don't know why we've kept them really.  I think I wiped everything off one of them, but don't remember doing the others.  So just to be on the safe side, I got husband to take the backs off them, take out the hard drives and smash them up in the garden, so we can dispose of all the bits at the tip without fear of someone making use of our personal details.  We've got a top up shop to do this morning, along with the first of many trips to the tip and dropping off some stuff at the charity shop.  I'll continue with sorting out the small bedroom/craft room, husband has his pre-op assessment by phone this afternoon.

Wednesday, 16 November 2022

First step of the moving planning

 Husband actually got on and sorted out his clothes yesterday, without any prompting.  He's filled 2 bin bags - one for the charity shop, and the other full of ancient, tatty, worn out stuff for the tip.  He also did some vacuuming, again without being prodded (only the lounge, but still).

In view of the fact that if and when we do move house, we'll be downsizing from a 3 bedroom house to (hopefully) a 2 bedroom bungalow, we will need to get rid of some of our furniture and belongings.  Husband, weirdly, said we'll have to put the excess in storage.......I don't think he'd thought it through, if we can't fit the stuff into a smaller place, then why would we need to keep it?  And pay for storage costs!  He did agree though when I said we should get rid of the stuff we don't need, not store it indefinitely at probably some extortionate cost.  So starting from today, we will be going through all rooms and thinning stuff out - donating some things and possibly selling others.  I think we'll be making lots of trips to the tip over the next few weeks, especially for all the junk husband's got in his garage and 2 sheds.  A good declutter and minimising our possessions is just what we need, I think - we should take tips from Sue of A Smaller and Simpler Life!  It'll certainly give us plenty to do over the winter, when we can't get outside and whilst we can't go to the caravan.

I think we'll start the sort out in the single bedroom aka my craft room and general dumping ground - it's certainly overdue a good clear out.  And once cleared of clutter, it might encourage me to get on and make this year's Christmas cards, I've only done 2 so far.  I'm going to open another savings account which will be for moving expenses - we'll try selling excess furniture, crockery, bedding, etc, on the local online selling pages and any money we make can be put into that account.  We've always done our own removals when moving house before, husband has hired a 7.5 ton lorry and we've moved with the help of friends and family.  In view of our ages and health issues now though, we'll have to get a removal firm in to do it.

Husband had a phone call yesterday to say he's having a pre-op assessment by phone on Thursday, prior to going to hospital for his angiogram.  So it looks like the op will be happening sooner than the possibly 3 months we were told by his cardiologist last week.

Tuesday, 15 November 2022

Bone idle

 I've told husband that today he's going to sort out his wardrobe and chest of drawers, both of which are stuffed to the gills, I've been asking him for weeks to do it (I did mine weeks ago).  He hardly even looks in them anymore (probably because a) he can't be bothered to put his clean clothes away after I leave them on his bed, and b) half of them don't fit him now), he just wears the same clothes - the ones I've washed and put on his bed (I don't do ironing) - all the time.  And they're tatty, with holes in and only fit for a scarecrow.....he has no interest in clothes, never has.  He's got some nice clothes in his wardrobe, he just never wears them!  He does change into something presentable if we're going out, as I've told him I'm not leaving the house with him looking like a tramp.  He grumbled and gave me a filthy look when I told him what he's doing today - but then I pointed out that yesterday he did virtually nothing except lounge in his chair and watch bloody TV.....ALL DAY.  He protested and said he'd done lunch.....erm, we had cheese & crackers, not some culinary masterpiece!  Oh, and he washed up once - well, half washed up, the rest he left in the bowl "to soak".  He said he'd been meaning to go in the garden to do a bit more clearing of beds but didn't as he thought it was going to rain - it didn't rain at all yesterday, despite looking grey and dismal, although the sun did come out late afternoon.  I said well he didn't have to sit there WAITING for it to rain, he could go out there and do a bit until (if) it did start raining.

Honestly, I cannot believe just how bone idle he is sometimes.  It's a good job we're not both like it!  He hasn't always been like this, he did used to be quite industrious, although did need prompting occasionally - he would always prefer standing around having a chat to actually doing any work.  He's gone downhill in the last couple of years - he's not depressed and his health isn't that bad.  He has occasionally said that he thinks he's worked hard enough throughout his life.  Well, haven't we all?!  I do wonder what would happen if I downed tools and did bugger all as has been suggested to me, but I wouldn't as it's just not in my nature to do that - if a job needs doing, then I do it, it won't do itself!

Several of you have suggested writing a list of jobs - that wouldn't really work.  For a start, as he's quite severely dyslexic he would have trouble reading the list and would have to keep asking me what it says.  And in any case, he would just end up ignoring the list and doing nothing again.  I just have to resign myself to asking (or even telling) him to do what I want him to do, when it needs doing.  And keep nagging him until he does it.  It's just so bloody annoying though, and it's making me really hard and unsympathetic.

Monday, 14 November 2022

This and that

 It's a grey dismal day, misty and the temperature has dropped.  Well, it is November after all.  Not looking hopeful for getting washing on the line this week.

I've decided to hold off submitting the housing application forms until after I've seen the Age UK advisor next week - one more week isn't going to make any difference, and they might have some ideas for how best to answer some of the questions.

I've got my annual diabetes review tests tomorrow morning, I'm expecting everything to be ok as usual.  I should think they'll be pleased that my weight has gone down a bit.

I went into my spam email folder yesterday, I was expecting an email which hadn't shown up in my inbox so thought it might have gone into spam (it had).  My spam folder is set up to automatically delete emails after a month, I do occasionally check it to see if there are any emails that aren't actually spam, sometimes there are the odd 1 or 2.  But I was astonished to see loads of emails (must have been nearly 100) purporting to be from Joe Biden or Kamala Harris or a few other American politicians - all, according to the subject line (I didn't read any of the emails) either asking for a donation or my vote.  Now, I don't suppose for one minute that these emails were all genuinely from these politicians - especially the ones asking for money, most likely scams.  But since I'm not American and don't live in the USA, it beats me why I've even had all these emails.  Who is sending them, and what do they hope to gain from them, when I'm not an American citizen?

I'm undecided as to whether I'll be putting up the tree or any decorations this year - husband couldn't care two hoots (he's a right Grinch when it comes to Christmas) and I'm not really feeling it right now.  I've always been a bit ambivalent about Christmas anyway - my beloved Nanna died on Boxing Day many years ago, and of course my lovely Mum died on Christmas Eve 3 years ago, so it's a bit of a sad time for me.  I don't know, I'll just go with the flow and see how I feel later on.

That's it really, nothing else to say, nothing going on and I'm feeling quite flat at the moment.