Saturday, 29 May 2010


Ooh Mr Jenny has been kind this week! For this week’s Saturday Centus I have swapped the prompt to the end and continued with my week one contribution.

“Hey, looks like you could do with a hot meal – how have you been?” It must be five years since the last time we met.

“I’ve been fine” I lied, too ashamed to confess to how I’d been living my life. “How about you? Still working all hours?” As he pulled me to my feet I noticed that he was starting to age, fine lines across his brow, smile lines around his eyes.

We walked across the park to a cafe, “I need the bathroom” he said, “I’ll be right back”

Ten minutes passed.

“May I help you, miss? You look puzzled.”
“Mmmm… thank you, I’m just looking for my father. We came in together a moment ago, but he seems to have wandered off.”

Thursday, 27 May 2010

S is for …

sad son! There are a wealth of things that I could have written about for S but a few days ago I was reminded of this sorrowful note that my youngest son left under my pillow one night many years ago (please bear in mind that he is now 20!).

I can smile now when I read it but at the time it made me feel very sad.

Short and sweet from me this week – have a look at the other entries over at Jenny’s place.

27-05-2010 21;46;11

27-05-2010 21;45;47

I wish I’d kept more treasures like this, I have a few gems hidden away but there are a lot that got away as well!

Sunday, 23 May 2010

May Secret Post Club


Remember I left you last week with a tease about what was  in that gorgeous pink jiffy bag that the postman bought me?

Well, I can reveal that it contained…


… a tube of Heathcote & Ivory Lavender and Lemongrass hand cream and a bottle of L’Occitaine’s Paeonia Eau de Toilette, which I have to say I had not heard of but that I now absolutely adore!!

This came courtesy of the lovely Victoria aka Mummy Bear!

Thank you, Victoria, for taking the trouble to read through my blog and choosing something so appropriate!!

More information about the Secret Post Club can be found here!

Mississippi Miracle Mud

Time for Saturday Centus hosted by Jenny. As usual the opening prompt is in italics and the rule is to complete a short story in a hundred words or less – and no pictures!

I look back over my shoulder, squinting into the late afternoon sun, gawking with stunned alarm at the broad rolling muddy waters of the Mississippi, when I say ‘alarm’ I really mean realisation. It’s at this moment I recognise that this is a glorious business opportunity – there are millions of gullible women (and some men!) all over the world who would pay an absolute fortune for some Mississippi Miracle Mud. Underneath those rolling waters lies a gold mine – I don’t understand why nobody has thought of it before or have they?

Wednesday, 19 May 2010

R is for …

…Rocking All Over The World!! I’m really sorry but that is a bit of a tenuous link to a great event that happened on 13 July 1985 – Live Aid! Status Quo kicked off the day with Rocking All Over The World hence the R link. Sorry – I’m rambling again. Last week for Q Kathy wrote about Queen – the rock band, not the monarch and mentioned Live Aid, I commented that I was there and she said I had to blog it! I figured that it was too late for L so I needed another way in and it came to me! Hence this post.


So, way back when in the days of no internet or mobile phones – remember that? Don’t tell me you’re all too young! The tickets went on sale early one morning and I have a feeling they were £25 which was hellishly expensive back then, anyhow we managed to get tickets and along with two friends John and I set off for Wembley for what was set to be the experience of a lifetime. I am so glad to be able to say that I was there and a couple of years ago when the DVD was released our eldest son asked for it as a Christmas gift we were only too pleased to be able to share our memories with him.

The big thing about the day was my realisation that Queen were probably the greatest rock band – ever. Before that I had been quite dismissive of them as I was more interested in Motown and the like.

Son 1 became a fan of Queen in his early teens downloading (shock horror) as many tracks as he could, of course Freddie Mercury was gone by then but his music lived on. We subsequently went as a family to see the stage musical ‘We Will Rock You’ which tells a story based on the songs of Queen and more recently to see Queen and Paul Rogers in concert which was fantastic. So that was a very tenuous letter R but I hope you’ll excuse me!

Let’s see what the other students have done for Alphabe-Thursday this week!

Monday, 17 May 2010

Chit Chat

What am I like? I’ve gone the whole weekend and haven’t blogged about last week and stuff – that’s because it’s really hard to type and crochet at the same time and I have given myself a real life project which will need to be finished for the summer – watch this space!

So what have I been up to? Let’s start back at last weekend. On Saturday I visited Janet to hand deliver her birthday present prize – if you click on her name you can see what it was! I was able to customise it because I waited to see who won before I bought it! We spent a lovely afternoon chatting and she showed me her garret where she does all of her creative stuff! She also kindly gave me a few plants that she had grown from cuttings to plant in my garden!

On Sunday I cycled to visit Son1 and FDIL – now that’s no real distance but when I say I haven’t ridden my bike for mmm, must be three years, I hope you'll be proud of me! (This is where I confess that I couldn’t ride all the way back up the hill and had to push it most of the way!!)

The work week whizzed by uneventfully and as it was my Friday off, I persuaded John that he would like to come to Cambridge with me on a yarn hunting trip! Now, Cambridge is about 60 miles away and is well served by Park & Ride buses – the ones where you park outside a city and catch the bus in. Trouble was we took the first exit which is not so well served – in fact it is not at all served. It took us almost as long to get to the centre as it had to arrive on the outskirts! Never mind, I knew where we needed to head and used Google maps on my phone for the first time to great effect. We drove into the car park and almost had a conniption when we saw the cost of parking! If we were over three hours it would be almost £10!!!!!! I wouldn’t mind but we mistakenly took the lift and it was disgustingly dirty – I’d have expected a lift attendant for that sort of money!!

And I was disappointed when I arrived at the large department store (hint - never knowingly undersold) to find that the haberdashery department was tiiiiiiny! I was so looking forward to being able to see and touch yarns that I’ve only dreamt about to discover that they had probably a smaller choice than the lovely little wool shop I found locally a few weeks ago. Before I started out I had decided that I wanted to cover the cushions in my bedroom and wanted lilac and purple shades to make up some granny squares – I was not going to be beaten and did manage to find yarn that matched what I wanted – just!

As I was leaving the store I noticed toilet bags & make up bags – not something I needed but when I saw the little beauty below I just had to have one!


Because – it’s just right for…


…storing my scissors and hooks!!

That was a little consolation to make up for the disappointment in the yarn department – well, a girls gotta have something now and again, hasn’t she!!

On Sunday there was a Vintage & Modern market at the waterfront here in Ipswich – some lovely stalls selling all sorts from crafty to antique to just plain old junk! (sorry!!) not being an antique person or a plain old junk person I opted for the craft stalls and bought this lovely cushion


to which John said ‘You could make that’ Yeah right – me and sewing don’t go together too good but I have long had a hankering to learn to quilt, so maybe just maybe…

Oh and then there was this gorgeous card holder that will be winging it’s way across the Atlantic in a few weeks to the perfect home!


Better finish now – time to get hooking for the evening but I will leave you with a taster  of what arrived today…tune in next time for more details!!


Sunday, 16 May 2010

Last Lesson

Here’s this week’s Saturday Census from Jenny – she has decided to let Mr Jenny compose the opening paragraph which is in italics below  - I’m enjoying this so far and I’d like to thank you all for your comments last week asking for more! I’m not sure that I could do that – would probably need research and stuff!

The small Cessna 172 picked up speed as it roared down the runway, Sara at the controls, the flight instructor beside her.

She knew that she had a very precious cargo to deliver. This was her last accompanied lesson before she got her wings and theirs was the only plane available to make this urgent delivery. Sara took a deep breath and full control of the plane. It was only a short hop to the island but she had never made such an important journey before. Twenty minutes later she safely landed and handed over the red box labelled ‘Human Tissue’. One last tick from the instructor meant that she was a fully fledged pilot.

Wednesday, 12 May 2010

Q is for …

…, err, queue! That’s right give us a line of people and us Brits will join it! Generally we are a polite bunch and don’t take offence too easily but if somebody tries to jump in in front of us, heaven help them! We will turn into a baying crowd, demanding the queue jumpers head on a plate or more. In recent years the ‘zig-zag’ queue has been introduced – you know the type with several posts joined together with a seatbelt type fabric so everybody starts off at the same point and then spits off at the end. At least  that way you seem to move along most of the time and there’s no tendency to hop across the different lines. However, I have to say that nobody does queues quite like the American theme parks, they’re very clever the way they switch the direction of the line to give the illusion of moving faster – always amazes me!

Anyway, enough of my waffling on about people standing in a line – let’s have a look at Jenny's other entrants in Alphabe-Thursday


Sunday, 9 May 2010

Look what the postman bought me this week!!

I’ve had a week of real deliveries this week – nothing surprising because I’d ordered  a load of stuff, but it is quite nice to have real packages to open!

Since the reawakening of my love for crochet I can often be found either searching blogs or auction sites for vintage-like crochet patterns. I found this gem on e-Bay for 99p (about 70cents now that the pound has dropped against the dollar!!) just look at the 70s-ness of it – I don’t care if I ever use it or not the  10 minutes I spent skimming through it were worth every penny I spent!

001 002  004 006 003

Please don’t all rush to place your orders!!!!!!

Then there was this yarn – remember I bought some blue last week? Well I found a pattern for a lovely baby blanket (keeping that as a surprise for the time being!!)and needed more yarn than I had, I thought maybe pink & blue together would make it more unisex. I changed my mind when I realised that it would be mainly blue anyway and there is still something that makes pink to girly for unisex! With that thought I managed to find the same brand on another auction site and ordered white to make two blankets – that’s another couple of projects planned!


And then there were these gorgeous notebooks which I ordered from my own photos through Photobox. I’m going to use them as gifts for a couple of very good friends!


Helping Hand

I’ve been sucked in again by the wonderful Jenny who, not content with making me stretch my brain cells for Alphabe-Thursday, has now devised Saturday Centus. Each week she will give us a starter paragraph which we have to finish off in 100 words or less – harder than it looks. My first attempt ended up with 124 and it took me back to school days to make it fit.

The paragraph in italics was the starter.

My untied shoelace changed my life. As I leaned down to re-tie it, I had kicked away a few leaves. When I turned my head slightly to look where the leaves had been. I was astonished to see a rubber-banded wad of hundred dollar bills nestled in a little indention in the muddy ground.

I looked around, had anybody else seen it? After what I had been through this was an omen.  I cautiously leant forward and touched the bundle – I could smell a cross between damp leaves and used bills. Shivering I gripped the bundle tightly in my right hand while I pushed myself up with my left. Suddenly I became aware of somebody close by and looked around. It was my father – he smiled at me. The years slipped away, the self abuse melted. I reached out and he took my hand. I didn’t need the money.

Saturday, 8 May 2010

Important Health Advice for Women

An Inbox special from The Boss – always have to take her advice :)

Do you  have feelings of inadequacy?

Do you  suffer from shyness?

Do you  sometimes wish you were more assertive?

If you  answered yes to any of these questions, ask your doctor or  pharmacist about Sauvignon Blanc. 

Mirassou Sauvignon Blanc Pictures, Images and Photos

Sauvignon  Blanc is the safe, natural way to feel better and  more confident  about yourself and your actions.  It can help  ease you  out of your shyness and let you tell the world that you're  ready and  willing to do just about anything.

You  will notice the benefits of Sauvignon Blanc  almost  immediately and, with a regime of regular doses, you can overcome  any  obstacles  that prevent you from living the life you want to live.   Shyness and awkwardness will be a thing of the past and you  will discover many  talents you never knew you had.

Stop  hiding and start living.

Sauvignon  Blanc may not be right for everyone.  Women who are pregnant or  nursing should  not use it.  However, women who wouldn't mind nursing  or becoming  pregnant are encouraged to try it. 

Side  effects may include dizziness, nausea, vomiting, incarceration,  erotic lustfulness,  loss of motor control, loss of clothing, loss of money, loss  of virginity,  delusions of grandeur, table dancing, headache,  dehydration, dry  mouth, and a desire to sing Karaoke and play all-night rounds of  Strip Poker, Truth  Or Dare, and Naked Twister.


* The  consumption of Sauvignon Blanc may make you think you  are whispering  when you are not.

* The  consumption of Sauvignon Blanc may cause you to tell your friends  over and over  again that you love them. 

* The  consumption of Sauvignon Blanc may cause you to think  you can  sing.

* The  consumption of Sauvignon Blanc may make you think  you can  converse enthusiastically with members of the opposite sex  without spitting.

* The  consumption of Sauvignon Blanc may create the illusion that you are  tougher, smarter,  faster and better looking than most people.

Please  feel free to share this important information with as many women as  you feel  may benefit!
Now just  imagine what you could achieve with a good Pinot  Noir...

NB – if any of you experience any of these side effects, remember – this is only advice, not compulsory!

Friday, 7 May 2010

And the winner is…

…Janet!!! I used the Random Number Generator thingy and it gave me the Number 3 which was Janet’s comment.

Thanks to all of you who took part – it was good to look back at your first posts – I can’t believe how long some of you have been blogging – I hope you all have many more years of happy blogging!

And just to prove it…

001  003 004

Wednesday, 5 May 2010

P is for …

…photographs! To be honest I had several things in my mind for P but I’ve opted for photo’s because they capture all that is dear – and some things that aren’t!

Not many words this week, I’ve decided to share a couple of very old photos with you and one more recent which I just love from our recent holiday – please excuse my little indulgence!


I think I was probably about three when this one was taken with my Mum and my brother 


I know I was three-and-a-half here – it was my Aunt & Uncle’s wedding – the only time I was ever a bridesmaid – I can remember having my hair curled and crying because it hurt when they took the curlers out!


John & I on one of the formal nights on our last cruise – don’t try to count the chins!!

P is also for present! As I’m celebrating the first anniversary of the Ramblings I’m hosting a giveaway to visitors to this post (via the link) – if you leave me a comment or a link to your very first post in the Mr Linky at the bottom, I’ll enter you into the draw for a surprise gift (it’s a surprise to me as well as I haven’t bought anything yet!!)

Don’t forget to hop over to see the other posts at Alphabe-Thursday – now to start planning for the letter Q…

Monday, 3 May 2010

Happy Birthday, Ramblings!

birthday-giftThere could be a gift for you!!! 

Wow – hard to believe but The Ramblings are a year old now! I sat down exactly a year ago today and unleashed myself on the Blogosphere – and what a year it’s been. I’ve memed almost compulsively, I’ve followed almost compulsively, I’ve commented on all sorts of things and I’ve obsessed over such trivial things as how many legs would there be if the visitors of the Twelve Days of Christmas all stayed until the end! And I’ve reawakened my interest in crochet!

So today to celebrate I’m going to have a giveaway – nothing to big because I don’t know where I will have to post to, but it will be something tasteful and useful!

So what do you need to do – simply leave me a comment on this post with, if you’re a blogger, a link to your own very first post on the linky thing at the bottom of this! I promise I will read all the links that are left, just to satisfy my curiosity. I’ll wait until Friday (7 May – 17:00 BST) until I perform the draw of the winner – may be some technical way or good old fashioned asking John to call out a number in a range!

To start you off here is my first effort – please share yours as well (otherwise I’ll feel completely unloved and you wouldn’t what that now would you?)

Sunday, 2 May 2010

What will Sparkle do next?

No – don’t worry, I haven’t done anything wrong or mischievous – just finished the latest hooky project!

When I had finished the Granny squares I had loads of yarn left over and decided to make a wavy blanket – I saw a pattern here but at first look it scared the hell out of me and I didn’t think I could manage it! The lovely Janet then copied a pattern for me that was very similar so I opted for that, with a variation (the pattern said double crochet (US single) but I opted for treble crochet (US double)). I was a little concerned at first to see holes appearing but then I realised it was because I’d varied the pattern slightly – eventually the holes became the guide for the pattern and helped to keep it on track!


It ended up a perfect square – don’t know how!


It’s not perfect by any means but it’s kept me occupied for a few months!

I’ve enjoyed making the blanket but was in a hurry to finish it because it is becoming too warm now to sit with it over my legs as I work! So the question is – what next? A while ago I decided to start building up a stash of yarn so that, in an emergency situation(!), I wouldn't have to go for days with nothing to do. We don’t have a particularly good source of yarn in Ipswich so I have to buy it when I see it! I was bemoaning this fact to Janet on Friday and she pointed me in the direction of a shop in Woodbridge, just a few miles away. Yarn heaven! I want that shop – it’s run by a very nice middle-aged man who really needs to let me get my hands on the shop! It would be a goldmine – needs a real good tidy up and sort out and I could see the people flocking from miles around, although saying that about five people came in in the ten minutes or so that I was there.

So – what’s next? Needs to be small so that I can hold it – I would dearly love to try something much finer so have bought some cotton. I’d also like to make a baby afghan – I’ve found a lovely pattern but will need more yarn than I bought :(. And then there’s the scarily bright yarn I bought for Something Completely Different  - I really must stop blog hopping to all of these lovely sites that fuel my imagination!


Janet to the rescue again plus this great site for free pattern downloads from ‘vintage’ crochet books

The blue is a 4-ply cotton and was the end of the lot – I bought all that was left – I need to find a white to make a lovely baby afghan that I’ve seen! I think I’m veering towards the brights for now to make Granny squares!

I’m off now – need to come up with a way to celebrate Blog-versary tomorrow – may even do a give-away, watch this space!