kazzy_cee: (stained glass)
The [livejournal.com profile] monthlydiaryday runs every 12th, so I am late posting what I did on Tuesday, but for those who don't see those posts my day is under this cut.

I have had a busy couple of days, so this is a little late, but under the cut is my 12th entry for this month.

Read more... )
Yesterday was another busy day.  I spent the morning first making some Queso Blanco (a Spanish soft cream cheese which is really easy to do!) then in my garage glass 'studio' as it was finally warm enough to cut glass in there (glass doesn't like the cold - it won't cut well), so I had a go at finishing another little glass cat and also a little terrarium.  Photos under the cut.

Read more... )

In the afternoon a couple of friends and I went to a talk in a local tea shop about a local Priory that has been sold off by our local council.  There is a charity trying to bid for the lease and they were explaining what they want to do with the building.  It's a listed building and dates back to the 12th century but has been extended into a modern 1960s built annex.  The idea is to have craft fairs and weddings as the original building is rather lovely inside.  It's all boarded up, but we walked past on our way home:


It needs some sympathetic restoration to make it pretty again, and I hope they manage to get the funding to get the lease and put into place their plans as they have some good ideas.  We were tired when we got home but I managed to persuade my friends to take some of the cheese as I've ended up with about 900g! :)

Today I shall start my stained glass lamp I think as it's fairly warm again (15 degrees), and tonight is belly dancing.  
kazzy_cee: (ani Angel clapclapclap)
I've got back from a lovely day out meeting up with Lj friends [livejournal.com profile] brutti_ma_buoni and [livejournal.com profile] daiseechain at a talk about the history of 1940s purfume in London.  The event was held at Les Senteurs at the back of Marble Arch in the West End which used to be part of my old stomping ground back in the day when I worked at my first job in Oxford Circus.  It was strange walking down Oxford Street (which I haven't really done in the last 10 years).  The buildings all look in need of a face lift, and I can only speculate that the retailers are spending their profits on the inside of the shops rather than the outside (apart from during the Christmas lights season).  However, some of the back roads behind Oxford Street, which used to be really grubby are looking rather nice these days so clearly quite a bit of regeneration has been done there.

The event itself was very interesting and included a glass (or two!) of Proscecco and little petit four cakes (delicious!).  We were taken through 9 different fragrances (we were given infused paper spills to sniff and keep) with information about how they were advertised and who they were aimed at.  There were associations with film stars (Grace Kelly, Marilyn Monroe) and certain designers and clothing lines as well as housing styles. Fragrance in the 40's was very much part of the daily routine along with your 'day' and 'evening' gloves and hat.  Some of the fragrances are no longer produced, but some are still available and as Les Senteurs is a fragrance shop we could get samples if we wanted to try some of them at home.  I have slightly fallen in love with Baghari by Robert Piguet which is described as an Oriental fragrance and I may have to go and buy at some point.

We had an extremely delicious late lunch (or in [livejournal.com profile] daiseechain's case a late breakfast) in Gail's artisan bakery while chatting about everything under the sun, and then wandered back to Oxford Circus to eventually go our separate ways.

I came home to find Mr Cee has made bread rolls for dinner which we will have with smoked salmon and cream cheese and champagne.  Apparently this is not for any special reason (even though we had a house viewing today which Mr Cee dealt with and went well) - it's just 'because', and I rather approve of that idea.

Sometimes you just don't need a reason..... I think this is happy thing number 20 for this year!  Happy Saturday all!
kazzy_cee: (kazzycee lovehearts)
As I posted about the 12th yesterday, I completely forgot about the 8 days of happy post for yesterday!

Yesterday's happy thing was getting all the laundry done, the house tidied and enjoying reading my current book.  It's a re-read of Rivers of London by Ben Aaronovitch.  I really enjoyed this the first time I read it, but I've read all the books so far and I had to admit I'd forgotten a lot of the back story when I came to read book 5 (Foxglove Summer). So much so that a re-read seemed to be a good idea.

Today's happy thing is that I spent this morning learning a new craft.  One of the local Adult Education centres nearby holds stained glass classes which I've always been interested in.  I decided to sign up as I can fit the 12 week course in before my work commitments get busy again at the end of the summer term.

A bit more detail about what I learned today... )

And I think that makes the 8 days of happy meme complete.   However I will try to keep posting I think.
kazzy_cee: (solar)
Today was another very lovely sunny Spring day, albeit a bit blustery.  Today's happy thing is gardening.  I don't really 'do' gardening, partly because I inherited a garden that pretty much takes care of itself and is made up of lots of lovely well established trees and shrubs. The other issue with the garden is that it is South facing, so in the summer it's far too hot for me to do much other than water the garden.

It's funny because the garden in the house before this one was my 'gardening' garden.  I grew fruit and planted flowers and really enjoyed the garden, but that was because I designed the whole thing (and I didn't have any children).  Once we moved into this house we brought a 3 month old baby, and 18 months later another baby arrived, then there was all the decorating and renovations, and extension that was built, and working and various jobs and the garden took a back seat.

I'm hoping the next house (if we get it!) will inspire me to garden again as it's a smaller garden, with little in it.  So I hope to be inspired again.  Today I bought some herbs and strawberry plants and a raised planter (which we can take with us), and it was fun to get it all built and ready for planting.

Here it is waiting for the plants to be planted.


I'll get it finished tomorrow as I need a little bit more compost.
kazzy_cee: (ani coffee cup)
We've just got back from a most delicious afternoon tea at the Criterion restaurant in London followed by a trip to the cinema.

Mr Cee works nearby, so instead of taking the day off, he met us at the restaurant.  We had yummy things:

Sandwiches and scones (goat cheese with mascapone or plain with clotted cream and jam) and lots of pretty cakes, and pannecotta. I had the same tea I had last time we went in January (with the same friends) which was Long Jing Dragon Well tea. I must get hold of some as it's really refreshing.

Afterwards we went to see the Ben Stiller film While We Were Young which was OK.  It was billed as a comedy, but I would say it just missed the boat there - although there were some laugh out loud moments - it wasn't what I would call a comedy film.  It was nice to see Charles Grodin again though (who had some of the best lines).

It was really hot and humid in London, and we had a good journey home as we walked down to Charing Cross station and literally walked straight onto a train home, so a nice short journey back too.

A good day!
kazzy_cee: (ani cats eyes)
Today was lovely and sunny again which is very welcome.  I spent a lot of the day sorting through things (still!).  Of course I couldn't do much without help and as I have lots of saved boxes from various places I have to be careful that when I pick one up its not occupied....



Happiness is a happy cat.....  I got quite a bit more sorted out which was good though.  Youngest Cee helped by sorting out a lot of the attic which was brilliant.
kazzy_cee: (handbags)
Today was immensely satisfying as I decided to tackle shoes and handbag sorting.

I am usually really good at getting rid of things, and I really don't like having clutter around.   However, I have weaknesses and those are shoes and handbags.  I will wear favourite shoes until they fall apart, and even then I may not get rid of them 'for wearing around the house and garden'.  So today was an exercise in being committed to downsizing and really taking a long hard look at the shoes I own.

Gone are the ones that smell (eewwww!), and the ones that still rub my feet, and the ones I bought on impulse and really are the most impractical shoes ever!  The smelly ones have been taken to the recycle centre, the others are in a bag ready to take to a local charity shop as someone will appreciate them I'm sure.

On a plus side, I found shoes I'd forgotten I had and shall wear more often now.

Handbags are also an issue with me - I tend to associate them with times in my life as I tend to 'reward' myself for things with a new handbag.  BUT - we are downsizing and so I had to be strong and donate ones I really don't need (too small, too big etc) to charity. The ones that are well past their best have been taken to the recycling centre.  I still have some gorgeous bags left but they are the ones I love and are very practical.  Another plus was that I also found my driving licence which I hadn't realised I'd mislaid in an old bag....!

It was a good day! :)

Also - I made a few icons:


kazzy_cee: (Spring tulips)
Yesterday was the 8th day I should have been posting about something happy.  And I forgot.

Ooops.

Anyway - my happy thing for yesterday was that I played around making fresh pasta and I got my pasta roller out and had fun with that.  The ravioli attachment didn't work, so that was a bit of a pain (especially as it squirted the filling EVERYWHERE and you're not supposed to wash the attachment).  But it didn't matter as I had fun, and I will try the attachment again with a drier filling (I was using spinach and ricotta as it was quite a moist filling) and see how that works.

As I have been so hopeless I shall start this happy thing meme again tonight and see if I can actually do 8 consecutive days.  That should be possible.... shouldn't it?
kazzy_cee: (solar)
Yesterday (day 6) was a very lazy day, and so I forgot about this meme again!!  It was lovely not to do anything very much other than have a very lovely roast lunch and then sit about catching up with some shows that we had recorded.  Which was good and made us all happy.

Today it has been GLORIOUSLY sunny!!! Which has been lovely after some rather dull grey days.  So I have been energised and rugs have been taken into the garden and have been beaten to within an inch of their lives!  Floors have been scrubbed and steam cleaned.  Furniture has been cleaned and polished and all the soft furnishings that I don't have time to wash today have been Fabrezed and smell lovely and fresh.  Windows have also been opened so the whole house smells of fresh air and sunshine!  Also I have made seedy rolls using beer and they smell gorgeous.  We shall be having them later with cheese and wine.

Lovely!

We've also had a few more people cruising slowly past the house in their cars and our website hits for our house listing is now over 400.  Keep your fingers crossed this means some viewings soon!!

Happy! *nods*
kazzy_cee: (tempus fugit)
I completely forgot about posting anything yesterday for this meme and only remembered when I was in bed (too late!).

However, yesterday was a very good day as I managed to pack away some things ready for moving.  We haven't had anyone come to see our house yet, but I'm not concerned as it's the Easter break for schools around here at the moment and because our borough schools have broken up earlier than many others a lot of people seem to be away.  We have had nearly 400 'hits' to our entry online and quite a few people driving past slowly.  I'm quite glad that we haven't had anyone round yet as that's given us some time to make the house more presentable. Last week I pressure-washed our driveway which now looks fabulous.

Today's happy thing is getting some more things sorted out - I'm putting a new coat of paint on the smallest bedroom walls as it's the only room that looks a little shabby.  It's looking much better for it.

Also today is Youngest Cee's birthday! He is 22 - I can't quite believe it! He's also so tall now (6 foot 5 inches!) that I feel very short next to him at 5 foot 11 inches!!  But he's still my baby and we love him for his kindness and his lovely personality. I have made him a chocolate cake with Guinness in it which is cooling at the moment and smells delicious. :)

ETA: finished cake!




Nomnomnom!!
kazzy_cee: (baking eggs)
This makes me happy:



I've wanted a KitchenAid stand mixer for AGES and I finally decided that it was time to buy one.  I decided partly because I could use a voucher towards it, and also they are offering a free glass mixer bowl which you'd ususally have to buy separately.  I have shunned the brightly coloured ones and gone for one that has a cast iron finish because it matches my kettle and other appliances.  It's going to have to live on the counter top as it's enormously heavy!  It arrived today and tomorrow I shall be baking! :)
kazzy_cee: (meme)
[livejournal.com profile] curiouswombat is doing this, so I thought I would too, as I'm finding it hard to focus on stuff at the moment and need to have a specific reason to post.  Otherwise all you get is rambling rambles, which are boring.

Today's happy thing is that I have completed my last College visit for the mid-year which is WONDERFUL!!! No more traipsing about all over London until June.  I was getting a bit fed up with the visits, and the upside was that this College is actually doing much better than several of the others I've visited over the last month which is a nice way to end the mid year stuff.  I can also put forward my claim form for the work in a few days (I am waiting so that it falls in the next tax year), so there should be some extra spending money coming into my account (what to buy..... what to buy?).  

All good.

\0/
kazzy_cee: (ani falling leaves Autumn)
Summary:

  • Youngest Cee came home for the weekend from University as he is having a bit of a 'wobble' about his health, but we managed to get him an appointment to talk things through with his GP and he is feeling more positive now.  He's on his way back to Portsmouth on the train now and I miss him already :(

  • The tiler has finished and the bathroom renovations are continuing.  Mr Cee was going to start the plumbing at the weekend and of course it turns out that it's not as simple as he first thought and more things need to be bought in order to get bits of new plumbing to fit in with bits of old plumbing.  However - it is starting to come together. \0/

  • I have a new L-shaped sofa which is fabulously comfortable and Tiger the eldest cat has decided it's his new 'place' to snooze.  This was just after it had been delivered hence lots of mess as I try and tidy up as well (my excuse, and I'm sticking with it!).   It comes with an alternative set of covers in green :)

2014-11-12 14.42.24

  • People in my area are STILL letting off fireworks in the evening..... I am so heartily sick of them! Fortunately they are far enough away that the kitties are not too worried, but it's so irritating!

  • I have too many craft projects......

  • The weather is soggy and I am having a lot of problems with condensation on my windows in the North facing rooms in my house.  So I spent most of the weekend chasing possible damp patches.  Apparently this is an issue for this end of the country after the wet summer and autumn, and it's all surface mould so nothing to be worried about, but it needs keeping in check.

  • Tomorrow I am meeting [livejournal.com profile] lilachigh to see some culture at The National Gallery in London which should be fun.  I am charging my camera...

  • Later this week it is Mr Cee's birthday, so we are going out for food in London and something else (to be decided)

​Happy Monday!
kazzy_cee: (ani applause)
I don't often weigh myself, but since I've been off work I have been keeping an eye on what I eat and moving around a lot more than I used to.  At no point have I felt hungry and I'm still indulging myself by making home made cakes and having the odd glass or two of wine.

So this morning I decided to pop myself on the scales and realised that since the end of September I have now lost 9 pounds!  Good grief!  Still a way to go until I reach my target "I can now fit in all my clothes comfortably again" weight, but at this rate I should be there by the end of Spring next year.

Rather chuffed.

In other news the bathroom renovations are moving along - the tiling is nearly finished (the tiler is here for the last part today), and a new sofa is being delivered today.

I don't even care that it's pouring with rain today :)

My weekend

Nov. 10th, 2014 05:31 pm
kazzy_cee: (viva London)
On Saturday Mr Cee and I went on a walking tour around London's East End and learned all about food and the influences on the types of food you find in the area.

For example - did you know:


  • that fish and chips is actually a Portugese/Irish fusion of foods created by the immigrants to the East End back in the 18th century?

  • that a Beigel (pronounced by-gel) is the Yiddish word for Bagel, and there is a shop that is open 24 hours and day, 7 days a week in the East End which serves nothing but Beigel and they are very delicious!

  • that there is a building which has stood near Brick Lane since 1745 which has been a church, a synagog and is now a Mosque and is the only building to have had gone through these changes of Faith outside of Jerusalem?

More with photos..... )

It was a very interesting tour and we really enjoyed it.  Also my Fitbit told us that we walked 12,783 steps on Saturday which was nine and a half kilometres, but it was definitely worth it and we did not need any dinner as we were so stuffed :)

Update...

Nov. 7th, 2014 10:54 am
kazzy_cee: (ani falling leaves Autumn)
Gosh I'm getting very bad at posting again.  I don't know why - and I do read my f-list every day!

Anyway - in the spirit of posting I thought I'd ressurect the Book of Days meme and that is quite a good (shortish) way of summarising stuff.

Under here for those interested )

That's the roundup!  Right, I'm off to put the last coat of paint on the bathroom ceiling so Mr Cee can install the lights this weekend - otherwise the poor tiler won't be able to see what he is doing on Monday!

Happy Friday all!
kazzy_cee: (viva London)
People keep asking me what I find to do at home since I've stopped working.  I don't know what they want me to say in response really.  I'm actually not very good at sitting around doing nothing (and WAS bored when I broke my foot a couple of years ago because I really couldn't move around for two weeks).

In actual fact I've been really busy doing all the things that I used to do when I was still teaching three years ago and had the summer at home.  Yes, I still had to prepare for the Autumn term lessons, but there was also time to do all the routine things like cleaning and tidying (properly!), and once I had a job that meant I had to work through the whole year those 'little' things didn't get done.

So I've now had a chance to organise cupboards and drawers, clean out unwanted toys, clothes and all manner of 'stuff' that we don't need any more.  I have enough 'things' for a boot fair in the Spring, and many things have been donated to local charities so they can benefit.  I hate clutter and Mr Cee just doesn't seem to see it, so it's been very satisfying to do this while he's at work ;)

It's also been quite useful to be able to do all those things that you always intend to do, like touching up the paintwork here and there where needed, and catalogue all the DVDs and update all the music and so on....(still not finished that!).

I've also been out and about with friends which has been great fun (photos below the cuts).

I went to see 888,000+ ceramic poppies at the Tower of London )

I also went out to the BBC Good Food Bakes and Cakes Show in Islington.  I was going to pop in and see some friends from work, but typically they were out at a staff development event on the same day which was a shame.

Good Food at the Business Design Centre )

And now I am moving on the crafts, so I'm learning Photoshop, and making a crochet throw and finishing all the embroidery projects that I never got around to completing....

So that should take me several more months...

In the meantime I've also got a couple of work-related outings, and some more trips out with friends (a London street food walk, the National Gallery Rembrandt exhibition, the Museum of London Sherlock exhibition amongst others!).... so, yeah - not bored!
kazzy_cee: (tempus fugit)
Clocks go back tonight...

EXTRA HOUR IN THE MORNING!

Woooooooooooooooooooooooot!!

Also lighter mornings ;) we will not mention the evenings will be darker...

Today has been spent taking all kinds of stuff we don't need any more to various charity shops in the locality.  We have a LOT of charity shops.  In fact, we made the National press because there are 12 different shops in a very short High Street.  However, this bit made me laugh:

"According to one estimate, nearly 18 per cent of wage earners in the town are on salaries of more than £75,000 a year."

Well yes, but this is because we have several gated communities where the houses are upwards of a million pounds (and several well over 5 million), and consequently the people who own them are rather well off.  These are the exception, and a nearby area is classified as an 'area of deprivation' which means that people living there are actually rather badly off.  But of course if you put them in the statistics they artifically inflate the overall average.

I do love me some statistics - you can make 'em say anything. ;)
kazzy_cee: (ani falling leaves Autumn)
Y'know when you have a really productive weekend?  Well we've just had one of those and it has been very satisfying.

Saturday started very early and so we took advantage and went out extremely early to travel across to the East of London to visit a very large industrial estate where there is an Ikea store.  We got there at 8.30 which was great as they were just starting to serve breakfast (which is delicious!).  Then on to buy ourselves a new dining table and four chairs as our original Ikea table and chairs are looking worse for wear.  They have served us well, but I wanted to donate them to a charity before they got too shabby for them to sell, so they have been spruced up and will be collected by the charity sometime next week.

We came home and assembled the table and chairs which took all morning and the rest of the day (which seemed endless!) was spent clearing out kitchen cupboards and cleaning.  We collapsed in front of the TV for the evening (Stictly and Dr Who!).

Sunday has been spent clearing out the understairs cupboard (why does so much end up in this bottomless space!!) and sorting out the resulting junk we found (we have so many light bulbs - some that don't fit any of the light fittings we now have!).  Mr Cee cleaned up the bathroom - we are progressing (slowly!) with the renovations - we had the walls and ceiling plastered this week.  Next step will be tiling and we are going to get someone in to do that (for the first time ever - we've done all the tiling in the house so far, but a tiler will finish it in two days and it would take us much longer).

I also booked myself a ticket to the BBC Good Food Bakes and Cakes show for 27th October as by booking now I got a £15 discount.  I shall be going by myself as none of my friends are free on that day, but I don't mind as I shall no doubt have a good time.

This afternoon was spent watching Tom Cruise in The Edge of Tomorrow.  I'm sure there were endless plot holes, but it was silly fun and we enjoyed it.

All in all - a good weekend with some lovely warm weather too!  Very unlike mid October :)
kazzy_cee: (ani LOLZ)
I live right on the South East borders of what used to be called 'Greater London' which means that if you jump in the car and drive for 10 minutes you are in farmland which extends right out into the main part of Kent.

This has lots of advantages such as commuting to London (which on a fast train is only 20 minutes away), but it's lovely to be in the Kent countryside after only a short drive, and the Kent and Sussex coasts are only an hour or two away by car as well.  So when I found out that there was a company which offered a weekly delivery of a box of vegetables containing a selection from the local farmers I thought it was a great idea and I've not been disappointed.

As these are mostly organic vegetables, you do tend to get some odd shapes - and I had to laugh when I saw two of the carrots this morning:
2014-10-15 08.19.20
Aren't they cute! LOL!!

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