Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Wednesday Madhouse - winning and losing

Fanfare please...................the last madhouse post..............a day early this week as I have friends down to visit tomorrow and will be agreeably engaged elsewhere.

 I have body image issues. I have ever since I had my emergency c-section. My stomach muscles were damaged and they never recovered so I have a ring doughnut belly and my belly button is AWOL. I can't wear a bikini anymore. I am so self conscious about this.

I also battle with my weight. Pre J I was a size 12, post J I got to a comfy 14 using WW points. But I find dieting impossibly hard and I have an intense dislike for exercise. I also like food and live with someone who loves to cook and does it so well.

I loose the battle of bulge and then I hate my body even more. These days I fluctuate between a 16 and 18. To me my view of my body and trying to get where I'd be happy is a battle that I never win. Or it was......

I still have issues and still have bad days but they are getting less and less - what is my miracle cure? Have I slimmed down to a curvy 12 or 14? No. But I realised that I am happy. When I diet I am unhappy. I spend too much time worrying about putting weight back on rather than enjoying what I've achieved. I am fit. I am healthy and I am pretty much content most of the time. I have a family who love me and I no longer spend time worrying over what I can or should eat. And the amazing thing is, since I got my head round this simple way of looking at stuff, my weight has stayed the same. I lost some weight in the winter and it hasn't gone back on. I eat healthy 80% of the time. I take moderate exercise most days and I maintain a status quo that although isn't perfect I can live with. Perhaps that means that I am winning.

That's all folks. No more madhouse.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Thursday Madhouse - Missed Chances.

I know the penultimate one and I'm a day late.....so sue me. One reason I am late is I have a complete blank over this one. There are things I could have done or maybe should have done, but as I try to live my life without regrets, there is nothing much that I see as a missed chance - they have been more about choices of direction.

However, I could be all serious and find something deep and emotive from my past to bring a tear to your eye of loves lost etc (not really - meeting M at age of 15 kind meant anyone before him wasn't love, it was teen lust) or the regrets over family misunderstandings (and there have been a few) but again I believe in no regrets so that doesn't work either. I could spin you the heart rending tale that my Father died without ever telling me he loved me....but it is ancient history and I have so come to terms with it....so what can I tell about missed chances........

1) I missed the opportunity to punch the girl, who bullied me at school for over 4 years, on the nose and if I had my time over - I would and if she crossed my path now - I would take her to task and probably deck her.

2) There are a few people that I should have 'told it how it is' to at the moment they deserved it but I did the grown up thing and turned the other cheek - I missed my chance.

3) There are a few peeps that I should have helped remove their heads from their rectums but I didn't. I have made a solemn vow to rectify this (get it?) and from now on if you talk to me with your head up yer bum I will tell you to so and ask you to remove it.

4) I should have told MJ years ago that he always spouted 'bollocks'.

5) There are a few peeps I've shown kindness to who have then preceded to shit on me from a great height - I know now and will not repeat my kindnesses but will bestow them on others who deserve them. If you ask again -I will be reading you your life history cos I didn't at the time and I should have!

6) I missed my chance to learn to drive - dear lord I am useless behind the wheel of a car.

7) I should have stayed having the drama lessons - I think they would have made me a better liar than I am.

8) I kind of wished we hadn't gone on holiday to Cornwall when we did -cos then I could have spent the last week of Loobles life with her.

9) I regret (yes a regret) starting this cos I want to get to 10 and I've run out of ideas.

10) All the knitting projects I've frogged and then a month later thought ............"Shit!" I did like that after all.

Almost there one left - phew. Back next week for the madhouse finale....like anyone reads this drivel or gives a fuck!

52 books - 29 - 40

I have seriously remiss in posting my reading. So I decided to do a bulk list and as I have been reading loads of crap quick fix fantasy stuff I will only review the books I really loved.

Book 29
The Three Musketeers - Dumas.
Format - Audiobook - Librivox.

Never read this before (or listened to it) I love the story - fab. But as it had different narrators which differing French accents and pronunciation it wasn't an easy listen. It has however made me determined to read it for myself or at the very least get a decent audio version.

Book 30
The Beekeepers Apprentice - Laurie R King.
Format - Kindle.

This is a really good read. I saw that Wibbo had read it in her 2010 book challenge, I enjoyed her review and decided to give it a go....well it's a variation on a theme with added Sherlock Holmes - how could I resist?
I am so glad I didn't resist. I loved it. I will be reading more of this series.

Book 31
Wuthering Heights -  Emily Bronte
Format - Audio book

This is a really old download that is on my previous iPod (which I use now mainly for audio books) and I cannot find anywhere who the narrator is -but however she is, she is wonderful.
I was a late comer to this book as I didn't read it until I was in my 20's and on my first reading I enjoyed it but it wasn't at all what I was expecting. It is now a favourite classic and one I return to time and time again. It is such a clever, thought provoking read - I love the dialect usage and the language - it is a book that makes you feel it.

Book 32
Rivers of London - Ben Aaronovitch
Format - Kindle.

This is my bandwagon book. I saw that quite a few friends had read and enjoyed it. I read its synopsis and some reviews and decided to download it. It is really good. Not my normal stuff but a change is good for you. I read it in two days because I couldn't put it down. I love the mix of thriller, police drama and a sprinkle of ghosts, spirits and magic -really works. I can't wait to download and read the next one.

Books 33 - 36.
Format - Kindle
(all chick lit)

Cinderella Deal - Jennifer Crusie
The Way to a Womens Heart - Christina Jones ( I love Christina Jones - her books are fab)
The Moon and Back - Jill Mansell
Summer of Love - Katie Fforde.

Books 37 - 40
Format - Kindle
(all fantasy)

My Love Lies Bleeding and Out for Blood - Alyxandra Harvy
My Soul to Take and My Soul to Save - Rachel Vincent

The above four books are all good reads but they are all very much on a par with the Twilight and Vampire Diaries style of book - with different twists - first two are vampires but it is more a telling from their world and perspective the Rachel Vincent books deal with banshees - but still are a variation on a theme. I would read more from Alyxandra Harvy but not of the others.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Just a little post

sham 012
Originally uploaded by loobles2002

I love graveyards. They have a silence about them. No rowdy, no radios, very little litter and a calmness.They are little pools of peace in the middle of a shopping area...like this one in Shoreham-by-Sea.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Round like a circle in a spiral....

Off the 3.25mm circular needle it has been residing on since March 2011 my finished Helix Scarf. Knit up in hand spun blue face Leicester. The fibre was dyed by the lovely Marianne and was loosely Navajo plied. It is amazingly soft and ploofy.

The pattern is a free one which can be downloaded from here there is also a link to Spinoff Mag from Ravelry.

Wednesday Madhouse - Happy.

Define happy? Happy is surely different for everyone. It is such a daft word for such a strong feeling.

I don't think I really get happy or do happy that much. I can't abide jolly cheery sorts, I find them intensely irritating, if I'm honest, I just like normal everyday kinds of being, maybe bordering on morose or slightly grumpy.....Oh I've just described myself. If I do jolly it feels like wearing the wrong size shoes.

I think extremes of emotion on a regular basis are unhinging anyway. So why do people feel the need to convince us they are happy with wonderful lives? Why do people feel the need to pursue happiness? How can you pursue something so fleet of foot and brief? And surely once you reach the pinnacle of happiness then what is left? Or is that then a done deal and you have to find some new kind of happy to chase down?

Personally, I am 'happy' (get it?) to find contentment in who I am and what I have. I would rather have moments where all is right in my world in little ways then be trying to be or to achieve something that isn't really me at all.

I feel no need to hold my life up and find it lacking in someway, though I'm sure to many others it is. There is nothing I need to pursue to make me happy. I think this idea of happy and needing to show the world you are happy is what causes so much discontentment in modern life. We are encouraged by envy and social media to see what we have or are as lacking in someway if we cannot reach understood measures of happy.

I do not need a bigger TV than my neighbours, a newer car than the people over the road, a better holiday than my friend or a more whizzy mobile phone than her down the street to be any more happier than I am right at this minute. The new obtained bit of material happy may produce a brief happy dance but is it really happiness I've gained? Or would I just be being brainwashed by pressures of the modern school of being that equates retail therapy and material posessions with being happy?

Happy is someone making you smile or laugh - freely and without restraint. Happy is waking up naturally when your body tells you, not when you have to. Happy is finishing a good book with a sigh of contentment that the author whisked you away from yourself. Happy is a hug from someone who wants to hold you. Happy is Lottie finding her babble ball and wagging her tail off. Happy is watching your kids grow up healthy and strong. Happy is acceptance of life as it is right now.

No Madhouse next week as it is a topic repeat and I can't think of anything else to say about 'shoes'. Then there are only two more after that.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Looming lovely

 On my knitters loom, almost finished.
 I warped up using black DK merino on a 7.5 dpi reed. Unsure what to make I decided to make a sample fabric using repeating motives/stitches. With the main body in sari silk, then patches of merino either shot through with silk or using Bookers Bouquet to give texture. (see picture below).

It makes a perfect sized shoulder stole the weight of the sari silk keeping it in place - but I am still tempted to cut it and make a bag. I do have enough sari silk for another project - so undecided.

I love my knitters loom and really love this fabric *does happy dance*.

Monday, May 09, 2011

52 Books - playing catch up - 23 - 28

Have been reading loads just haven't been 'asked' to blog about it. So thought I'd better play catch up. To date I have read/am reading book 41. So I am rather behind - whoops.

Book 23.

The Lady in the Tower by Alison Weir
Format - Book.

I love history. I love reading about history and one of my favourite time period runs from Henry viii to Elizabeth i. I have read so many books, by so many authors that I didn't think there would a new slant or commentary that I hadn't come across but this book ticks the 'new idea' box wonderfully. It is well written, easy to follow and very informative without being too dry. I've not read this author before but on the performance of this book, I would happily read her work again.

Book 24.

Firelight by Sophie Jordan.
Format - Kindle.

I have been having a binge of teen fantasy lit - cos I like it! This one is a corker. In fact the abrupt ending was a shock I was so sucked into it. The book came up in the Kindle sale and I decided just to give it a go, now I can't wait for the follow up. Dragon/people - who can fly - yes!

Books 25 and 26.

Kisschase by Fiona Walker/ Kiss and Tell by Fiona Walker
Format - Kindle.

I haven't read any Fiona Walker for years - I went off her. But in 'Kiss and Tell' she revisited some characters that I liked from a previous book so I thought 'why not'. It took me a while to get back into her style and there were still some of the issues that stopped me reading her books, but once it got going it was good. A romping 'Jilly Cooper-esqe' style or perhaps that was the horsey setting?  But by the end of the book I realised I had enjoyed it but it still, in my memory didn't match up to the first book of hers I ever read 'Kisschase'. I thought a comparison read would be good so I downloaded it there and then (got to love yer Kindle) as I had no idea if I'd kept the book. Now this is a book I read over and over when it first came out but that was a while ago and it was hazy - and my tastes have changed. I still love it! It is fab, girly, but fab. Her style and content have changed but I'd say for the worse in her more recent books, if she went back to this I read everything she wrote.

Book 27.

Persuasion by Jane Austen.
Format - Audio book read by Greta Scacchi

I think this is my second favourite Austen. I love Capt Wentworth as a hero. I want to visit with the Musgroves and go to Lyme. I think it has the most satisfying ending of all her novels - the letter gets me every time. This audio is great - Ms Scacchi handles the telling well and does good characterisation without distracting from the story. She has amazingly clear diction too. I never ever tire of this.

Book 28.

The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien
Format - Book.

I realised that I haven't re-read this book since my 20's. I found my copy of it in J's room and borrowed it back -it was a perfect way to spend a Sunday evening/night a couple of weeks ago. Scandalous as it may seem I don't really like LOTR - I've read it twice and it is boring IMHO - but 'The Hobbit' I loved and still do. I got pulled straight into it and had to be forcibly dragged out of it to go to bed! I still love the mutton chapter and still think Gollum is better in this book than LOTR (I do like the films!) and it stills calls to the 12 year old who first read all those years ago. It was my first experience of the fantasy genre and has shaped a lot of what still appeals to me again. I also loved that this battered copy had the lovely old book smell - you don't get that with yer Kindle!

Wednesday, May 04, 2011

Wednesday Madhouse - Music.

Lalalallllllllaaaaaalalalalalalllllllllaaaaaaaalllalalala dee-dum-dim-deeeeeeeeeeedummmmmmmmmmmdididididideeeeeeeedum.

I thought I'd sing you a little song.

I like music.The room I am in right now has at least 10 different instruments easily to hand. I like to sing and make sound (it sounds like music to me). I like natures music, right now a Robin is singing right outside the window,a Wood Pigeon is calling in the distance and the leaves are rustling in the breeze - no cars.

If I have a choice I would rather sit and listen to music than watch TV. One of the few things we spend a lot of ££'s on is our music system - far more than we'd spend on a TV, games system etc. It is wonderful to be able to flood the room with good quality musical sound.

As for musical taste mine is always mood related but it wide ranging. There aren't that many music types that I don't do - off the top of my head I can only think of Improv Jazz. Though I must be getting old because a lot of stuff that is current and IMHO manufactured I can't abide. Occasionally I hear something and it resonates for instance I never thought I'd like Lady Gaga, but I do.

This weeks listening has been - Tori Amos, John Frusciante, Simon and Garfunkel, The Raconteurs, Slipknot, RHCP, Smetana, William Orbit, Geoffrey Oryema and Lisa Gerrard.

Who shall I listen to today?