Monday, 31 December 2007

No more whinging

You can read on in confidence - VC's whinge corner has been retired again. You're safe.

Today I don't have much to say but I thought I'd post a few pictures as I've been feeling deprived of picture-posting capabilities while I've been away.

First up, since I said I would:

A good look, no?

And next, here is my mum's Christmas present from me:


Not the colour-scheme I'd have chosen myself, but it's what my mum wanted - and I think it worked out quite nicely.

Next up, here are some rather sozzled monkey-fans (NBM's uncle and aunt):

And finally, NBM's winning entry in the grand Christmas day colouring competition (please don't ask):

And I think that's quite enough fun for now.... except to say:

Happy New Year to blog friends old and new, and any lurkers too - and best wishes to you all in 2008

from VCxx

Friday, 28 December 2007

Back again

Hello blogland! Did you miss me? I missed you... well, I missed the Internet, certainly. But, as of earlier today, we are in Oxford (phase two of the visit-as-many-family-members-as-possible enterprise we seem to have set up for ourselves this Christmas), and in Oxford, the Internet connection is working - hooray!

The thing is, now that I'm back, I don't really know what to say... but I'm sure inspiration will strike if I just keep typing and hoping for the best. I haven't got any pictures yet, but I will be uploading some very very soon for your delectation. (Would you like to see the one of NBM wearing three Christmas-craker paper hats, all at the same time? It's a corker, I tell you.)

Ah wait, I know what you'd love to read - VC's whinge corner, today brought to you by supermarkets and motorways. My supermarket whinge is as follows: when a person is struggling their way round an incredibly busy supermarket with their propsective MiL, on the Saturday before Christmas, at lunchtime, trying to heap two very large trolleys with enough festive fare to feed either A) a small army or B) one very active Northern Biking Brother, and the whole experience is really starting to make them feel a tiny bit frazzled, what do you suppose would help calm their nerves? Because I am pretty sure that the answer is not, Mr Morrison, playing heavy techno trance over the loudspeakers.

And my motorway whinge is probably the same as everyone else's over the festive season - along the lines of it taking us three hours to travel 25 miles yesterday (nearly two hours of which was taken to cover a three mile stretch of the M6, giving an excellent average speed of 1.5 mph for that part of the journey.) As it was supposed to be the start of the 200-mile trip from Lancashire to Oxford, but it was dark and raining and gridlocked, and we were tired, we ended up turning around and aborting the journey. We regrouped and headed South again (more sucessfully) this morning.

Anyhoo, I think that's enough whinging for now. In cheerier news, most of the other things about the festive time have been good, so we should remain whinge-free for a while. I'm sure you're all be relieved to hear that, then :o)

Enough waffle for now - but I'll be back soon with piccies galore (just as long as the Internet doesn't fail me again, of course...)

Tuesday, 25 December 2007

Technical hitch

In a first-things-first stylie: A very Happy Christmas to all of the lovely people out in blogland who have stopped by my chicken over the past few months - I hope you're having a lovely day whatever you are doing.

And now to the technical matter. I know I said I'd continue to blog while I was away. I had every intention of doing so. But then the Internet connection at NBM's parents' house had a meltdown and messed up my plans. Grr. So, I write this brief missive from the NBM's Uncle's computer. And I probably won't be back until at least Thursday when we'll be in Oxford, and hopefully be able to get online once more.

Anyway, Happy Christmas again, with love from VC and NBM (and not forgetting her Uncle, who sends big sloppy kisses, and love from the heart of his bottom. Funny man.) :o)

Friday, 21 December 2007

Reduced Service

Welcome to the blandest of posts, in which VC announces that blogging around here may be a little under par for a wee while. This is because I am at the NBM's parents' house until next Thursday, giving me: A) limited Internet time and B) difficulties in uploading piccies.

So, while I shall continue to post over the festive time, my blog may be operating on a reduced-service basis. But I'm sure nobody will mind as you will all be too busy to read blogs anyway, at a time when you are doing festive things with your nearest and dearest (possibly including, although not limited to, those activities of a trying-not-to-drive-each-other-crazy variety.)

Right, I should now go and help with bed-making duties, and then it's back to the grindstone with Christmas knitting (is it possible to get RSI of the elbow from gift-based knitting endeavours??)

Wednesday, 19 December 2007

So much to tell you

Well. Hello there, old friends! It seems I did it again, doesn't it? Fail to post on my blog for a while, that is. But I'm here now, and I have several days worth of exciting things to pack into one fun-filled post.

Firstly, thanks for all your helpful advice re: my Secret Santa gift; and particular thanks for being so kind about my necklace. The update for anyone who is interested is that the giftee may or may not have liked her gift - it was hard to say. Another colleague liked it very much though, so I know what to make her for her next birthday :o)

In more Secret Santa news, here is what I recieved from the game:

The rectangular thing is a bar of soap, and the rubber duck-shaped thing is a rubber duck - although it's quite an unusual one really, as it flashes crazy disco lights when you touch a sensor on its underside. Which is smashing, as now I can experience all the fun of a rave while having a bath (although I am a bit concerned that I might get electrocuted if I put it into the water - because the lights have got to be powered somehow, haven't they?)

In other news, I've been dutifully plugging away at my card-making, and things are looking promising - I now only have a few left to make, and they are for delivering by hand, so I don't need to worry that I'll have missed the last post.

Some of the fruits of my labours

On the knitting front, things are significantly less good - I still have two gifts to complete before the Big Day, one of which I've run out of wool for. Oh dear.

Crashing swiftly on from that, I wanted to show you this strange little thing:

Before: World's longest zip

After: a handy handbag!

I love the concept, and it is a curious thing, but it's more than a novelty: it's a perfectly functional bag when zipped up, and I think it looks quite nice. If you fancy a good laugh, you can go here and watch the hilariously cheesy advert for these bags. ("It's sassy and hip! It's the hip-zip!") Particular mention to the enthusiastic woman having coffee who points out that the bag would be perfect for her knitting!

And finally, I thought I'd share a picture of my Chirstmas tree, since I have enjoyed seeing other blogger's trees in all their decorative glory. Ours is a little unconventional:

Who says Christmas trees have to be firs?

We have a very small flat and we can't really fit a festive tree in, so we just hang baubles on the resident yukka-type-thing instead. I think it does a fine job (and those presents are secure from any potential thieves - that plant has the sharpest leaves in the land! Ouch!)

Right then, I'm off to appraise the knitted gifts situation. Or possibly bury my head in the sand about the whole thing. Cup of tea and a slice of denial, anyone?

Saturday, 15 December 2007

Secret Santa

Quick straw poll - do you think this necklace is an OK Secret Santa gift for my colleague?

The rules are £4 maximum spend, and I couldn't find anything for that amount that I thought she would like. So, I went to the bead shop and got some necklace ingredients, and I've just put this together. I'm hoping it will be OK as I know her taste in accessories is for quite simple stuff rather than anything complicated.

The thing I'm nervous about is giving a handmade gift in a Secret Santa, as not everyone might like the handmade vibe... although the good news is that the bits and pieces I used only cost £2.55, so I was planning to spend the remaining £1.45 on some chocolate to go with it; that way she gets something she'll like even if the necklace isn't a hit!

Let me know what you reckon, becasue I could always rethink the whole thing: like giving the necklace to someone else and spending all of the Secret Santa £4 on choccies...

Friday, 14 December 2007

No time to blog

Got to make cards, write cards, finish making a couple of gifts, and wrap parcels before tomorrow morning's trip to the Post Office.

Someone needs to invent the 40 hour day... although, on second thoughts, I probably wouldn't have the stamina to make it through one of those :o)

Happy weekend all,

Wednesday, 12 December 2007

Three is the magic number

I have made three Christmas cards so far. This is not going to get me very far down my Christmas Card List, given that it has approximately 32 people on it at the moment.

Not enough

So, I am forsaking a full and witty blog post tonight in favour of heading off to do some cutting and sticking. Only another 29 cards to knock out....

Monday, 10 December 2007

A pleasant surprise

At the weekend I did a favour for one of my colleagues, and today she got me these lovely things as a thank-you:


.... Ahhh.

I don't know that it was really deserved, but I feel very lucky, and I am very excited about all the little Green and Blacks choccie bars in different flavours. Yum.

I'd share them with you, only obviously I need to try all the different flavours myself, so as to make a fair comparison between them. I'm sure you understand.


Sunday, 9 December 2007


I know I have been very quiet on the blogging front recently. I didn't mean to be - it just happened.

Anyhoo, I'm here today to tell you that I have nothing to say - but I'm going to say it anyway :o)

Erm... actually there are a few bits and pieces. Firstly, I had a lot of fun last night with some friends who told me about this website. You upload a picture of yourself, and using facial recgonition thingammyjobs, it tells you which celebrities you look most like. Which doesn't sound that entertaining, but somehow it was hilarious. Possibly becasue it was, of course, wildly innacurate.

I was told that I look most like Jennifer Connolly, Mischa Barton, or Hayden Panetierre - all of which is utter rubbish.


We then learned that NBM most resembles Hillary Clinton, Shirley Temple, or (my personal fave) Haley Joel Osment. It was at that point that we really began to doubt the highly sophisticated software used by the website ;o)

Do let me know if you give it a whirl yourself, and what the results are - plausible or otherwise :o)

Just before I go, I wanted to show you a photo I have been working on for my Christmas cards (possibly left it a little late for making these - oops). I ripped the idea shamelessly from an advert I saw in a newspaper, but I hope it will be OK given that I am just making a few cards to send to friends, not to sell or anysuchlike.


I may try to turn it into a card tomorrow - but I'm not very gifted that way, so it will probably just be the photo printed onto the front of a piece of plain card :o) I'll let you know if I get any more adventurous...

Wednesday, 5 December 2007

OK, who told them??

I keep getting dirty looks.

And now they've taken Delaware hostage.

Apparently I will get him back "when my sense of humour improves considerably"....

.... but I'm hoping I can just bribe them with the many boxes of teabags I still have cluttering up the kitchen.

Negotiations continue.

Monday, 3 December 2007

I promised pictures....

.... I lied. I have none.

But what I do have is a link to another website, which has pictures galore - all of which involve PG Tips monkeys! Huzzah!

But before I link to it, a couple of quick words of warning: firstly, it's probably not one for the kiddies. And secondly, monkey-lovers might find it a wee bit distressing. They might even find the whole concept in very poor taste. Personally, I am undecided; but I can't help finding some of the pictures very funny. And in the end, I think you have to laugh - you'd cry your eyes out otherwise.

As a quick guide: if you've seen Monkee Maker's blog post today, and you found that at all upsetting, then you'd be best to avoid my link. OK? Good.

Right then: if you do visit this site, don't say I didn't warn you. And please don't tell my Monkey Army what I said about finding some of it funny....

Saturday, 1 December 2007

Slings and roundabouts

.... Actually, no roundabouts. And only one sling.

To elaborate: today has been one of those days when nothing pans out quite as you expect. We were woken up by NBM's brother phoning to ask of the whereabouts of the nearest hospital with an A&E, because NBM's dad had slipped down some stairs and dislocated his shoulder. Ouch.

So, we rushed round and spent about four hours with them at the Bristol Royal Infirmary, after which NBM's dad was let out, complete with a newly-relocated shoulder, some heavy-duty painkillers, and a sexy sling - to stop his arm from falling off, presumably. I think that's what they're for?

NBM has now gone on a mercy-mission to drive him back home to Lancashire, as he is obviously not able to drive himself anywhere for a while. I'm holding the fort here in Bristol.

Annoyingly, I'm still feeling quite ill, but I'm trying very hard not to whinge, as I'm thankful that my shoulders have both remained safely housed in their rightful sockets all day. My mantra to repeat: not grumpy, not grumpy, not grumpy.... (continue as necessary).

Anyway anyway, having decided that "Hairy Lee wreaks havoc in Ward 7" was probably a photo-story best left to the imagination, I went to the BRI without a monkey on my person. So, I have no interesting photos for you today - sorry about that.

One last thing - thanks so much for the comments you have left to say you hope we feel better soon. NBM is now irritatingly healthy again, and I'm sure I'll be following suit imminently. Also, many thanks to anyone who has made it to the bitter end, and read this far in today's very wordy post.... Pictures next time. I promise.