January Daybook

simple-woman-daybook-largeFor Today… 11th January 2017

Looking out my window… I can see clear blue skies, but I can hear the wind howling and there is a storm on its way.

I am thinking… I might cook cheesy bacon pasta for tea tonight.

I am thankful… that mental health in young people is taken seriously.

One of my favourite things… is driving with my son to band practice and having a natter about all sorts of things, both big and small.

I am creating… this little beauty. I began it during the evening on Boxing Day (for my non-UK readers, Boxing Day is the day after Christmas Day) and it is going to be used when we go away in our caravan this summer.

Rectangle blanket based on the traditional "granny" stitch, using rainbow colours. Three repeats of the individual colours followed by three rows of each colour afterwards. Just starting the blue three now and hopefully will finish it this weekend.
Rectangle blanket based on the traditional “granny” stitch, using rainbow colours. Three repeats of the individual colours followed by three rows of each colour afterwards. Just starting the blue three now and hopefully will finish it this weekend.

I am wearing… layers, layers and layers today. The heating is on but I’m bone-cold.

I am reading… “The Coroner (Coroner: Jenny Cooper Series)” by M R Hall

I am watching… The BDO World Championships on TV this week. I love watching the darts, and the BDO suits me because it is not as high-powered or glitzy as the PDC competitions. Darts are good to crochet to as I can listen and only half watch the TV as I’m concentrating on the yarn in my hands.

I have been listening to… Pemberton Old Band rehearsing for a competition this weekend in Skegness. My son plays bass trombone for them and I sometimes give him a lift to rehearsals. I have enjoyed the experience of being a groupie rather than a player since he started playing with them, and it makes a refreshing change for me to hear a piece of music being crafted into a performance piece to contest level by a band of this calibre. They are in the First Section (one level down from the Championship Section but working on their way back up) and they are a level above where I played with Middleton Band before I stopped playing.

I am hoping… my brother recovers quickly from his surgery yesterday.

I am learning… to trust my instinct.

In my kitchen… I have been making the effort to cook proper meals from scratch. We have a limited food budget and sometimes it can be a challenge to eat healthily all the time, and I have been enjoying the challenge of finding recipes and dishes that we can eat to fill us up, fill us up healthily, fill us up healthily and inexpensively.

Board room… we are looking at the story of Jonah and the Whale for our next Messy Church and I really want to do this activity with the children:

Post Script: I found this site (Strategies for dealing with change) when I was looking for something to help someone I love who is going through some really difficult, anxious times. I found this picture, and thought it would be great to share with you too. Please visit the host site for more like this.


Shared Quote…

Closing Notes… I began this post this morning, about 12 hours ago (which is why I said the sky is clear blue and not the midnight black it is now) and today has been another one that has been packed with drama, fun, music, family, planning, crafting and laughter. I thank God that my life is so varied and that it is filled with so many people who stimulate me in so many different ways. I have to say that being a mum is challenging at the minute, and I trust God to see us through the particular storm we are weathering just now. I am grateful to my friends who visited today too – a bit of a giggle and a chat with people you love goes a long way to making things feel better! And music. Ah music. Where would I be without you? Laughing with Ethan and Megan in the car going to band rehearsal tonight and having fun finding music that we all like. Fortunately all three of us have similar musical taste and we enjoyed a great 45 minutes each way listening to all sorts of stuff, from First Class’ “Beach Baby”, to the cast recording of songs from “Sweet Charity”, by way of Glen Campbell and his “Rhinestone Cowboy” (with alternative words, courtesy of yours truly) and a bit of “Hairspray” to finish with. You definitely can’t stop the beat if you’re travelling with the Pamster at the minute!



Daybook Entry – 13th July

8598a-simple-woman-daybook-largeFor Today… 13th July

Outside my window… there is still a trace of blue in the sky and it has gone 11pm

I am thinking… about the juxtaposition of tragedy and celebration today

I am thankful… that I have a ministry in the church

I am praying for… Millie’s family, Alfie and his mum, the children of Pike Fold School who came to Messy Church today

I am wearing… my hair loose for a change

I am creating… a jacket for myself. I have cut out the pattern pieces and the fabric for the lining, but I haven’t plucked up the courage to cut out the fabric for the jacket itself yet. I’m letting my knees recover before I get down on the floor to do that!

I am going… to take my son shopping for clothes tomorrow for his band trip to Italy next week

I am wondering… when his passport will arrive

I am reading… I’m in between books at the moment having finished “House Rules” by Jodi Picoult yesterday afternoon, but I did read a short story by Neil Gaiman last night called “Odd and the Frost Giants” which was brilliant. I don’t usually read fantasy stories, but this one was a great read and I’d recommend it to anyone who wants a satisfying read for half an hour or so

I am hoping… I don’t miss the delivery man tomorrow who is going to be bringing me my Dad’s birthday present in the post. I’m hoping my Dad likes it too

I am learning… that the human spirit is probably the toughest substance in the universe

In my garden… we have lavender, strawberries, thyme and parsley growing on the deck and the smell is divine

In my kitchen… we had a bit of a concoction for tea tonight – mushrooms, courgettes, yellow peppers, red onions in a tomato sauce with gnocchi. Not bad for a knocked-together quick meal

A favourite quote for today…

Psalm 139

You have searched me, Lord,
    and you know me.
You know when I sit and when I rise;
    you perceive my thoughts from afar.
You discern my going out and my lying down;
    you are familiar with all my ways.
Before a word is on my tongue
    you, Lord, know it completely.
You hem me in behind and before,
    and you lay your hand upon me.
Such knowledge is too wonderful for me,
    too lofty for me to attain.

Where can I go from your Spirit?
    Where can I flee from your presence?
If I go up to the heavens, you are there;
    if I make my bed in the depths, you are there.
If I rise on the wings of the dawn,
    if I settle on the far side of the sea,
10 even there your hand will guide me,
    your right hand will hold me fast.
11 If I say, “Surely the darkness will hide me
    and the light become night around me,”
12 even the darkness will not be dark to you;
    the night will shine like the day,
    for darkness is as light to you.

13 For you created my inmost being;
    you knit me together in my mother’s womb.
14 I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
    your works are wonderful,
    I know that full well.
15 My frame was not hidden from you
    when I was made in the secret place,
    when I was woven together in the depths of the earth.
16 Your eyes saw my unformed body;
    all the days ordained for me were written in your book
    before one of them came to be.
17 How precious to me are your thoughts,[a] God!
    How vast is the sum of them!
18 Were I to count them,
    they would outnumber the grains of sand—
    when I awake, I am still with you.

A peek into one of my days…

Dragon in the sky tonight
Dragon in the sky tonight

One of my favourite things… is seeing children singing and dancing in church

Post Script:

It has been a very trying time for me and my family recently and we have survived yet another storm in our lives. It has felt like life was giving us a bit of a kicking but we are on the up again now and looking forward to a couple of things this month now. First of all, Ethan is going away with the music centre for a few days’ concert tour in Italy next week then it will be our 25th wedding anniversary the week after. A few days after that we are planning on going camping although Emma won’t be with us this time and she is staying at home. She has been working away at a High Adventure camp for the past six weeks and between you and me, I think she’s a bit fed up of tents and sleeping bags at the minute! Our change in outlook is because of a couple of things that have come together at the same time and it has made things altogether feel better, even if they haven’t actually solved the problem. With prayer and faith, and the grace of God extended to us through our friends, life is feeling a lot happier and we have some things to look forward to now.



Daybook Entry – 24th February 2016

Daybook EntryFor Today… 24th February 2016.

Outside my window… it is a chilly -1 and each star is like a little chip of ice in the sky.

I am thinking… about who fascinating it is to cross paths with new people.

I am thankful… for my musical gift.

I am praying for… my old friend Jason who is in a high dependency unit tonight after a significant and serious surgery today.

I am creating… a plan for a screenplay. Can’t publish it yet but watch out, it’ll be coming soon!

I am going… to be leading our Lenten Bible study tomorrow night with my friend Helen.

I am wondering… whether this scratchy throat will develop overnight or will disappear.

I am reading… a really crappy novel that is nice night-time reading but not worth commenting on really in amongst the reams and reams of notes and critical essays I am reading for my studies…

I am hoping… I can make a good headway on my children’s literature assignment tomorrow. The official deadline is tomorrow lunchtime but I have an extension until Tuesday because I have been a bit poorly.

I am learning… to say “no” and to take some rest when my body tells me I have to.

In my garden… I have recently put out a new bird feeder filled with nuts and seeds but there hasn’t been many visitors yet. I might have to add a bit of something extra to tempt the birds in.

In my kitchen… Emma and Gemma made a delish meal tonight of pasta and a “sauce” which was stuffed FULL of vegetables. Very, very nice.

A favourite quote for today… this is from our Lent challenge at church, and it is a video I created for the verse “The Lord is my salvation”.

A peek into one of my days…


This is my friend Dot and it was taken on Saturday at our Deanery Away Day which was held at FC United. It was a great day and we had a good old natter about stuff.

One of my favourite things… is watching people blossom when they are given encouragement and praise.

Post Script: I posted yesterday about the question of whether Britain should remain in or leave the EU, and it has sparked a bit of a debate it seems. Have a look and see, and please leave me your thoughts if you have an opinion or an observation about it. I’m keen to find out if other people are as confused about it all just the same as I am.




Dreary Daybook

8598a-simple-woman-daybook-largeFor Today… 8th February 2016

Outside my window… it’s horrible out there tonight. Wind, rain, more rain, more wind, even more rain and wind. And we have a leaky roof.

I am thinking… about my son’s parents’ evening we have been to tonight.

I am thankful… that I didn’t kill him on the way home but not quite as thankful as him!

I am praying for… Simon and his family; Anne Marie and Lauren.

I am wearing… pink jumper, grey t-shirt, black jogging pants, blue and white stripy socks. I am a walking piece of designer artwork this evening.

I am creating… not very much at the minute as I’m not feeling very creative. However, I did make these the other night to pass a quick half hour and some spare wool from my stash.


I am going… to spend the whole day working on my writing assignment tomorrow.

I am wondering… how my brother Alan and his wife Debbie are doing. We haven’t seen them for ages and it’s high time we organised a visit.

I am reading… “Abattoir Blues” by Peter Robinsonabattoir-blues-paperback

I am hoping… for an unbroken night’s sleep tonight. Last night was disturbed by the need to wake up early today, meaning that in order for me not to oversleep I was subconsciously scared of not going to sleep properly in the first place. Gah! Don’t you just hate it when that happens?

I am learning… to trust my instincts about storytelling.

In my garden… we have had a robin visit us every day for the past few days. I think he’s looking for food so I might put some out on the feeder for him.

A favourite quote for today… “I passed!!! XX” (From my daughter Emma who passed her driving test today at the first time of trying. Thanks muchly to my brother John who has been her driving instructor and whose brilliant teaching has got her through first time).

emma driving test

A peek into my day today… in the space of about 20 minutes I saw these two idiotic drivers parking like this. The first picture shows you a small sports car parked on the pavement with his offside wheels stuck in a grass verge, made muddy by the torrential rain all day and where he has parked because there was no room on the road. I filmed him trying to get out and I was not prepared to help him – apart from the fact it was wet, muddy and dangerous, my thoughts are that he got himself into that mess because of his own stupidity so he can get himself out. Or wait until there’s space on the road.


And this second picture is after a man drove up, threw his car into the disabled parking space, and then RAN into Asda at Eastlands. No blue badge on the dashboard, and no consideration for anybody who might have needed that spot right by the door. He couldn’t even get it between the (extra wide) lines.


One of my favourite things… is being told how lovely my children are, and especially how polite and well-behaved they are.

A few plans for the rest of the week: I have an assignment due on Monday next week so I will be mostly working on that, but I have a lot of critical reading to do for my children’s literature too so it’s going to be a heavy study week this week. It is the start of Lent on Wednesday, so I will be going to an Ash Wednesday service at my church on Wednesday evening after a visit from my friend Helen and Friday night is band night.


Daybook Entry 24th January 2016

8598a-simple-woman-daybook-largeFor Today… 24th January 2016

Outside my window… we’re awaiting the tail end of storm Jonas that has battered the east coast of the USA. It’s all calm for now but it won’t last…

I am thinking… about what I am going to write for my end of module piece for my creative writing course. I’ve got a few ideas swilling around and I am going to have to decide soon so I can submit my plan.

I am thankful… that I managed to do two whole assignments this week.

I am praying for… guidance over a thorny issue I am wrestling with.

I am wearing… black t-shirt and pyjama shorts. Well it’s Sunday evening!

I am creating… notes on a screenplay I want to try out.

I am going… to Stay and Play in the morning, our mums and toddler group at church. It’s a bit of a bind getting up on a Monday morning but the kids and the mums (and the grandmas, aunties, carers, child-minders and my colleagues!) all make it worthwhile.

I am wondering… if we’ll see snow in a day or so.

buffalo soldierI am reading… I have just started “Buffalo Soldier” by Tanya Landman (it’s a set book for my Children’s Lit module) and for entertainment I have just begun DCI Banks book 20 “Watching the Dark”. I finished Stuart MacBride’s latest Logan McRae book “In The Cold Dark Ground” last night and it was a cracker. Well worth the wait from the last one, and I’ll probably do a book review in a day or so.

I am hoping… my hair grows quickly. I cut it before going to bed last night but I took a bit much off my fringe and it stands up a bit like I’ve had an electric shock at the minute.

Comedy haircut and morning face - can it get any worse?!
Comedy haircut and morning face – can it get any worse?!


I am learning… the Harvard system of referencing. And I have to copy one every time I need to write one.

In my garden… I saw a little robin this morning pootling around in the laurel bush. He seemed quite happy to be there, hopping from branch to branch and nipping at a couple of buds here and there. Happy chappy and I enjoyed watching him for a few minutes.

In my kitchen… we have just had hunter’s chicken, potato gratin, peas, carrots and broccoli followed by tiramisu. A proper Sunday tea.

A favourite quote for today… “God’s got this”.

A peek into one of my days…

I went on a training course at Manchester Cathedral this week and I was struck again by how beautiful and inspiring the building is and had to share this photo. It was a cold, crisp day which you can tell by the clear blue sky and the sunshine really set off the stonework. How’s this for a lovely view of Manchester?



One of my favourite things… is sharing pretzels with my daughter

From the board room… my next project!!


Post Script: My youngest will be 17 on Tuesday and I am looking forward to his birthday and dreading it in equal measure. Looking forward to it because it is one of those milestones that young people anticipate in the UK when they are legally capable of driving a car and he has been looking forward to that privilege for years, and dreading it because I can’t believe how quickly the past 17 years have flown by and how old I feel knowing I have a nearly-adult son. I look at him sometimes and my arms ache to hold that tiny baby again, to soothe his pains and his cries, to make sure he is asleep when he should be, awake when he should be, to make sure he is fed and comfortable in his clothes with no worries in his head other than where his next lot of milk or dry nappy will come from. I will probably blog more about him on the day (no doubt with some embarrassing baby photos too!) but for today, I just want to savour the last few days of him being a 16 year old before he turns that ‘adult’ corner into manhood.


Daybook Entry – 15th December

daybook button

I love doing these daybook entries. They serve as a focus point for me in many ways, and there are times in my life when I need this time to just stop and reflect. Tonight is one of those times.


Outside my window… the clouds are scooting through the sky in layers. I can see wispy low clouds scudding like they’re being chased by the hounds of hell and then behind those there are denser, slower moving ones that are playing hide and seek with the moon. Then there are the high ones that seem to be painted on. It’s lovely.

I am thinking… that I’ve done it again. EVERY year I tell myself that to start getting ready for Christmas before Remembrance is just not on, and I’m definitely going to wait until 1st December to start, and EVERY year I get to this stage, realise that I haven’t got a hope of getting ready because I’ve been so tied up with other stuff that I’ve not started yet. There’s so much to do I feel I could cry.

I am thankful… that I have a fantastic support system. If I begin to name people I would be afraid of missing people out, but without a certain handful of people these past couple of weeks I wouldn’t have made it through.

In the kitchen… there is lots of space – space in the cupboards, space in the oven, space in the freezer. As I said earlier, I am so far away from being prepared this Christmas and I have been so busy that I haven’t got myself  organised enough to be prepared for being busy. We haven’t eaten properly for a couple of days because a) I’ve not been shopping for proper food, b) I’ve not had time to cook anything and c) I haven’t got anything in the freezer we can rely on to bail us out. ARGH!

I am wearing… shorts and a t-shirt. I have been on the go for over 12 hours today and I got home and had a shower about an hour ago. It’s time for bed shortly so there was no point getting dressed properly.

I am creating… not very much at the moment, but this coming week I am going to be crocheting lots of things for presents for people.

I am going… to have lunch with my bestie tomorrow. After all the time spent on other stuff in the last couple of weeks I’m going to enjoy a bit of time out tomorrow.

I am wondering… if this sicky feeling I’ve got is going to go away after a good night’s sleep. I thought it was because of nerves about things I’ve been responsible for today, but that’s all over now and I still feel sick.

I am reading… I have just finished “Candle in the Darkness” by Lynn Austin. It is the first in a trilogy centred on the events leading up to and during the American Civil War. Each of the instalments tells the story from a different perspective and this first one is told from the point of view of a plantation owner’s daughter in the South. Caroline is a Southern belle but she disagrees with slavery, befriending her father’s slaves and treats them as family. Her fiancé doesn’t see it the same way, so when the war begins she finds she has divided loyalties. The second is told from the viewpoint of Caroline’s cousin from Philadelphia and the third is from the viewpoint of a slave. I am looking forward to finishing the trilogy – the characters are vibrant and alive, and I have gained a better understanding of the American Civil War through this story.

I am hoping… the families at the memorial service at church tonight were comforted and strengthened by our efforts to bring light to them in their grief. From the feedback we got from them it seemed to go well, but only God knows just how people are touched by things like this.

I am praying for… our memorial families; my friend John; Eddie; my church family who I have grown closer to this past year; my husband; my niece Jessica.

I am looking forward to… having some time to relax this week.

I am learning… how to write a decent essay – thank you David!

Around the house… I wouldn’t know. I’ve spent so little time here over the weekend I’ve almost forgotten what it looks like.

I am pondering… gifts or presents for people? What’s the difference, you may ask. Well, the way I see it, a gift is something you give someone to be nice. It might have a function or a decoration but basically it’s something that comes in a nice box and is nice to open. A present is something that you have put a lot of thought into and you match to the receiver’s needs or wants. I don’t like giving things just for the sake of giving something, but I don’t have the resources or finances to give presents to people that I want to. See answers above…

A favourite quote for today:

Lord, forgive our lack of faith in your loving power.

When all we see is what we don’t have.

When we fail to notice the countless blessings.

Clear our blindness to the needs of others.

Strengthen us to serve you.

Help us to truly listen to one another.

Give us loving and generous hearts.

One of my favourite things… is sitting in my rocking armchair with a cup of tea in my hand.

A few plans for the rest of the week: Stay and Play in the morning, lunch with my friend, carolling in the evening tomorrow; some housework (badly needed!) and shopping on Tuesday; carolling on Wednesday night with my bestie… lots happening that I can’t even get into place yet!

A peek into my day…

Sunday School today was a bit mad – we had a puzzle race to do, a couple of worship songs, some artwork to do for the wall and a brilliant “When I Went To Bethlehem” game. These two snippets of video were taken as the children spontaneously burst into song while they were colouring in their pictures. You can’t beat moments like that!!

You may have gathered that I’ve been a bit busy for a couple of weeks. Let me give you a glimpse into my activities just this weekend:

Friday – get to the church hall at 9.30am to set up for Christmas lunch for the First Friday Silver Service lunch club. Go into church to disassemble the PA system, amp and microphone receiver etc. Take it to the hall to set it up there. Put up tables and chairs, get music going, help serve lunch, perform quiz and give answers to music quiz, organise singsong and lead 12 days of Christmas with audience participation. Clear up tables, disassemble PA and all sound equipment take it back to church and reassemble it all, head back to hall to help finish washing up and tidying up, get home at about 4pm. Dive in shower, no time for tea, leave house at 6pm to go to Todmorden, conduct brass band concert, arrive home 10.40pm. Quick cup of tea then bed.

Saturday – typeset service sheet for Memorial Service on Sunday, type up slideshow for same service to include 80 names and all animations and transitions, leave house at 12.15 to go to OU tutorial at Manchester University (no time for lunch), leave tutorial at 3pm, get picked up by Kevin (late, as he’d been stuck in football traffic), head to Tesco for carolling with church, 5pm finish carolling, go shopping, 7pm manage to eat some food (hurrah!!!), spend evening making sure memorial slideshow works properly and finding appropriate music and sorting out Sunday School resources for morning, downloading video for a visitor in the service and making sure service slideshow works for morning. Still fighting with printer at 1am….yes, one o’clock in the morning!

Sunday – up at 8am for breakfast (yes, food AGAIN) head to church for 10.15am to set up slides for service and stuff in the hall for Sunday School. 11am manage to sit down for service in church for half an hour before heading out with kids to do Sunday School. Great fun, see videos above! Back into church after service to time test the memorial slide show with the readers and to decide music, enter baptism in the parish register, write out certificate, photocopy 200 2-page service sheets with Mum, Dad and Kevin and then fold and staple them. Home at 3.15pm and a quick bacon butty (hurrah FOOD!) and a sit down before heading out again at 4.45pm to go to church. Lots of final touches before the service including writing prayers and double checking the names on the slideshow match the memorial candles and playing music as people arrived for the service. Memorial service in full swing at 6.30pm – memorial slideshow and music went perfectly – disassemble the AV stuff after the service then over to the hall for the reception with the memorial families. Tidy up, tables and chairs away, set up for Stay and Play in the morning and then home just after 9pm to finally stop this weekend. 

Phew, it’s been a bit busy!!! In a funny kind of way I do enjoy times like these, but I do have my limits. Being so heavily involved with church and a brass band naturally means that this time of year is the busiest ever, and I find that the more I have got to do the more I can do. Strange really. You can see why I like the time it takes to do a Daybook Entry – the stopping and reflecting does wonders for me. I just hope you like them too.

Come and join us at  http://thesimplewomansdaybook.blogspot.com/ and join in!!

Daybook Entry – 1st September

With the first day of September comes a new promise to myself that I give my head a wobble and devote more time to my blog. I have lost my way a little bit recently and as the 1st September represents the start of a new season and a return to school with a new slate etc, I am taking this chance to recommit to my writing and my blogging. Thank you for bearing with me during the wilderness weeks.

daybook button

Outside my window… dusk is falling.

I am thinking… about how precious life is.

I am thankful… for so much it’s difficult to know where to start.

In the kitchen… separate meals today. I’m not hungry, Kevin was hungry before Ethan was so they’ve each made their own meal at different times.

I am wearing… comfies.

I am creating… minions. Lots and lots of minions. My own pattern too.

I am going… to take Ethan to buy his school shoes tomorrow. Watch out bank… And P&O…

I am wondering… whether to inflict the X Factor on the boys again tonight or whether I should go upstairs and watch it on my own in the bedroom.

I am reading… I’m in between books at the moment. I’ve just finished reading two of Philippa Gregory’s books about “The Cousins War”, which covers the period of medieval England that sees the end of the War of the Roses and the beginning of the Tudor reign. I don’t know whether to read another one of the same ilk or whether to read something completely different. I hate this stage of reading, sigh.

I am hoping… I manage to hold my end up tomorrow night when we do a presentation at church for the diocese. We are aiming to be OLM accredited in the future, which means that we would be authorised to host an Ordained Local Minister as part of our leadership team. In the light of the changes already underway in the Diocese of Manchester with regards to reducing priests and increasing lay ministry, it’s an important step for us if we are to continue as a worship centre in our part of Blackley. As an ALM it is my responsibility alongside the other ALMs to paint our church in as honest a light as possible in terms of our vision and mission etc so that we give a realistic view to the bosses.

I am praying for… Sue and her family; for my cousin Kathryn and Lee ahead of their wedding next week; for Barbara – a proud and upright lady whose life has moved into a closing chapter; the people of Syria.

I am looking forward to… starting my course with the OU in a couple of weeks. Happy happy happy!!

I am learning… that leaving things to the last minute is seriously detrimental to my health.

Around the house… pretty sorted. Unless you look in the spare room.

I am pondering… which book to read next. I might make a start on some background reading for my course.

A favourite quote for today:

Lord, for the years your love has kept and guided,
urged and inspired us, cheered us on our way,
sought us and saved us, pardoned and provided:
Lord for the years, we bring our thanks today.

Lord, for that word, the word of life which fires us,
speaks to our hearts and sets our souls ablaze,
teaches and trains, rebukes us and inspires us:
Lord of the word, receive your people’s praise.

Lord, for our land in this our generation,
spirits oppressed by pleasure, wealth and care:
for young and old, for commonwealth and nation,
Lord of our land, be pleased to hear our prayer.

Lord, for our world where men disown and doubt you,
loveless in strength, and comfortless in pain,
hungry and helpless, lost indeed without you:
Lord of the world, we pray that Christ may reign.

Lord for ourselves; in living power remake us-
self on the cross, and Christ upon the throne,
past put behind us, for the future take us:
Lord of our lives, to live for Christ alone.

One of my favourite things… is being moved to tears by the words of a hymn (as I was by the hymn above this morning).

A few plans for the rest of the week: shopping tomorrow with the boy, presentation in the evening and then nothing until Friday afternoon where I will be going to have lunch with some senior citizens. Oh yes, and a daily blog post!!

A peek into my day… I have been sorting out all my photos on my laptop this afternoon and there are some lovely pictures that I’d forgotten I’d taken. Here’s my son on his first day at high school three years ago. He is now going into Year 10 and has changed an awful lot. He’s still my baby though!!







Come and join us at  http://thesimplewomansdaybook.blogspot.com/ and join in!!

Daybook Entry – Summing Up The Past Week

I thought I would combine two posts today and do a daybook entry that reflected the week away I had with my family last week. I tried to blog something each day whilst I was away but because I was camping on the top of the moors and only had a mobile phone for internet connection I couldn’t really post too much about what I was doing. So here you are – a summing up of the week and a daybook entry all rolled into one. Buy one get one free lol!!




Outside my window…I am looking into my garden which is festooned with camping equipment. Unfortunately we have just had a stormy cloudburst and what was nearly dry is now more soaking wet than it was when we hung it up this morning. Oops.

I am thinking…what a wonderful time we had last week.

I am thankful…for my family. For everything.

In the kitchen…half a ton of laundry in various stages of washed, drying, waiting to be washed and waiting to be folded.

I am wearing…new socks!!

I am creating…this is a difficult one this time. I am stuck with Ethan’s blanket still (I’ve blogged about that before so I won’t bore you again) but on a bigger scale I want to be creating something that will earn me money. I keep revisiting this idea from time to time but things are getting to the desperate stage and I absolutely NEED to create something soon or else I will go off my nut with the feeling of uselessness I’ve got at the minute.

I am going…I don’t have any plans to go anywhere for a day or two. My next planned outing is going to be the study group at the vicarage on Tuesday night.

I am wondering…whether I can take migraleve now, or should I wait a bit more? The thing is, I took 60mg of codeine two hours ago for the pains in my offal, but I’m developing a migraine now as well and I’m not sure whether migraleve has codeine in it or not. I don’t want to chance it so I think I’ll leave it for now and hope that the migraine doesn’t spin off within the next two hours.

I am reading… “The Crow Trap” by Ann Cleeves. I’ve not got very far into it yet and the characters are just about being introduced. It’s the first in a series (I’ve already read the fourth, doh!) and it’s by an author I’ve read before so I am looking forward to getting on with this one.

I am hoping…my offal pain is a passing thing…please God don’t let me be laid up with it after having such a great time last week!

I am looking forward to…going to bed tonight. Sounds mard, but there you go, I am a bit mard today.

I am learning…patience!! I am frustrated with my health condition and the fact that it is stopping me doing so much, and that I can’t get involved with certain projects to the extent that I want to. I am learning to be patient and relax, and to wait for things to develop in their own sweet time. But it’s a hard lesson to learn.

Around the house…the post-camping detritus that always happens after a soggy week away.

I am pondering…Kevin and I are looking for a replacement caravan. We have come into a little money recently and rather than do the sensible thing and put it aside to pay for bills later on, we want to spend a little of it on a new caravan. Not new new, but new to us new. We know what we want, and how big we can go (not very on account of the limited space on the driveway) and how much we want to spend (with the emphasis on WANT lol) but finding a suitable van that meets all those criteria is proving a bit tricky. There’s nothing too badly wrong with our current van – so long as you don’t mind the leaks, the draughts, the limited seating space, the difficult setting up of beds at night, the limited storage space…..you get the idea!

A favourite quote for today…

One of my favourite things…is being away on my holidays

A few plans for the rest of the week: nothing planned really. It’s going to be one of those “see what happens” weeks.

A peek into my week…

Day 1 evening walk. I love the different shades of green lit up by the setting sun. This is Ethan and my Mum inspecting the buds on the pine trees.


Day 1 evening stroll. More of the setting sun on the forest and the sheep


Day 1 evening stroll. The sun peeking out between the trees of the forest on the edges of the campsite.


Day 1 – evening stroll in the woods. The Team being daft…


Being dafter!!!


Day 2 – Day out in Scarborough. This photo was taken at exactly the same spot as our “finishing photo” when we cycled coast to coast a couple of years ago. Dad and Kevin had gone to park the cars so the team is looking a bit depleted here.


Day 2 – waiting for a trip on the pirate ship (just docking behind Ethan). It was a lovely ride…so long as you like the rough sea on a windy day!


Day 3 – relaxing in the sunshine. Dad’s untangling a kite string (for the millionth time…) and Ethan’s reading from my Kindle. He was reading “Pinocchio” to us. (Don’t look at the storm clouds in the distance….)


Our caravans at the bottom of the field. It was lovely and quiet by the end of Tuesday when everyone else had gone home!


Bella resting in the shade.


Mum and Ethan flying the kite


Our caravan didn’t escape the Jubilee flags! I couldn’t take a proper picture of the inside of the awning but that was just as decorated too. As was the front of the van with a huge St George’s flag. Ahhhh proud to be English!


Day 4 – we found the most beautiful village in England. Aldborough in Yorkshire. Not a blade of grass out of place, not a speck of litter or graffiti, not a wheelie bin in sight…Absolutely stunning place.


Mum and Dad walking with Bella in Aldborough. Day 4.


Day 4. The windfarm on the farm next to the campsite. You can actually see the weather front coming in!


Day 4 – the storm has hit. Judging by the news reports in the last few days we were lucky with the weather. We had considered going to Aberystwth or Caernarfon in Wales but because Bella isn’t too well we didn’t want to go that far from home. If we did we would still be there and trapped by the floods. Makes you think doesn’t it!


Day 5 – Fountains Abbey. Beautiful place, well worth a visit, especially if you go on one of the guided tours (see next photograph…)


Yup – we went on the “Monks Tour” which involved us dressing up as monks and following our guide round the Abbey. Looking rather more like Jedi knights on this picture, but I assure you, they were definitely meant to be monks!
And yes, yours truly was dressed up as well! Doing my best Yoda Tuck impression…..


Bella captivated by something in a fireplace at the Abbey.



Ethan, my son. Looking like a paparazzo at age 13!



So there you have it. Some of my snapshots from our week away in the caravan last week. We had an absolute ball last week, it was so relaxing and so much fun I’d go back again next week if I could! We did have our problems (like Mum running out of some of her medication and Dad having to come back home for it on Wednesday, and Dad’s car having engine problems on the journey there, and of course the weather was a bit of an issue by the end of the week because we had no dry shoes and coats) but problems aside, it was a GREAT time!



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Daybook Entry 10th Jan


Outside my window…is a windblown garden in disarray. Fortunately it is dark and therefore I can’t see it.

I am thinking…I need to go a find a sharp point to punch through the leather binding I’m making for a book.

I am thankful…for my God-given musical gift.

I am praying for…baby Kyle.

In the kitchen…I’m going to be making some sort of cake tomorrow. I’m thinking chocolate traybake or something like that.

I am wearing…comfy bottoms and black t-shirt

I am creating…I am crocheting a hat to my own design but I am struggling with the sizing of it on the crown. I know how to do it, I just can’t actually do it!!

I am going…to be starting the Alpha course on Thursday night. Really looking forward to it.

I am wondering…how I am going to be stretched by the projects I have got going on at the moment.

I am reading…just finished “Ghost Song” by Sarah Rayne. It is a fantastic book and I will be doing a proper review of it in a day or so. I’m toying with which book to pick up next.

I am hoping…that tomorrow is a less painful day and I can get on with what I need to – a bit of shopping and a bit of baking etc

I am looking forward to…finishing my first bound book

I am hearing…celebrities baking on TV

Around the house…is a nightmare……don’t even ask me…..

I am pondering…getting things off the ground and getting some of my crafts SOLD!

One of my favourite things…laughing at the TV with my family

A few plans for the rest of the week: baking tomorrow, Alpha course Thursday, music arranging before weekend, planning a proper shop for Saturday and getting some proper food inside my family.

Here is picture for thought I am sharing…

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Daybook Entry – 25th March

Outside my window…it’s a little cooler than yesterday but it’s still sunny and Spring-y

I am thinking…I need to find a pattern for crocheted chicks for Easter

I am thankful for…support and friendship from a very special source

From the kitchen…Paella tonight!

I am wearing…t-shirt and cutoffs

I am creating…amigurumi animals

I am going…to the library to take my books back

I am reading…I’m between books today. I finished one last night but I’ve got a list to read that’s half a mile long

I am hoping…my best friend feels better soon

I am hearing…the TV

Around the house…washing machine is going round, books are slowly getting to their rightful shelves

One of my favourite things…is my comfy bed

A few plans for the rest of the week: It’s Friday so technically it IS the rest of the week, but this weekend will be a bit of a hit and miss affair depending on how things pan out. A glass of red wine tonight is a sure thing but after that…meh!!

Here is picture for thought I am sharing…

My friend Steph gave birth to a beautiful baby girl this morning – Maisie Olivia, weighing in at 9lb 6oz. Congratulations to Steph and Jay!!

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