OK, So I Was A Tad Rude . . .Whatever!


Yesterday I sank to an all-time low – even for me. I’d like to state my case here and have you all say that my actions were well justified but I doubt that you will.

I have been suffering from migraine and visual disturbances since last Friday. Migraine is nothing new to me – I have suffered with it for a large part of my life, but the pattern with this latest attack was different. It hung on . . .  and hung on, one hour lessening . . . the next returning. Intermittently my right eye lost clarity, with flashing silver and black triangles, dancing like manic witches, on the periphery. This has happened 7 times, the seventh time being yesterday morning when I attempted to go to Morrison’s to buy cat food for Chea. Between the ‘chicken with gravy’ and the ‘chicken with jelly,’ my right eye vision started its familiar flashing.

Now, I have my own theory on the cause of all these migraines but no bugger will take me seriously. I truly believe that they are triggered by my 3 degenerative neck discs that have very little of that ‘spongy’ bit separating them now and are aggravating this condition.

So, I decided to call in at the doctors on my way home – that is if I could find my way home with only perfect vision in one eye – and explain this to the doctor and ask to be referred for another neck scan etc. I mean, less face it, no better time than when I’m in the throes of pain and semi blindness, hey?

The receptionist announced that there were no more appointments for that day and if I wanted to see my doctor of choice (brilliant, caring, and wonderful all round, by the way) I could come back next year. Yes, that is a slight exaggeration, but only slight. Had I been able to see the stupid woman I might have been tempted to stick her Biro up her prominent snout, but I was feeling less than confrontational, all things considered.

I felt my way home having settled for a phone call from the doctor – basically to see if I was worthy of being squeezed into his precious day.

After tending the chucks and cleaning the loo, with my mobile strapped to my person so that I didn’t miss the call, I waited . . . and waited.

Eventually the call arrived. It was a nurse. Now, I have nothing against nurses, not at all but . . .

She questioned me, listened, tapped away on the PC (I could hear it distinctly and it hurt my head) and then said, ‘Can you come down now?’

Well, yeah. I could have ‘come down’ two hours ago . . . in fact wasn’t I already there two hours ago, or had I imagined it?

Long story short now. Saw the doctor I had sworn I would never see (by choice) ever again and he insisted it was migraine – nothing to do with my neck – didn’t matter that the ‘pattern’ was totally different – no he couldn’t ‘do’ a referral, not unless ‘he’ thought there was a problem with my neck – no my neck would not cause this.

He struggled to realise that I’ve tried every medication on this planet over the years and nothing works. Medication makes me worse. I’m sensitive. Side affects almost kill me. However, he decided in his infinite wisdom that I should try a different ‘variation’ of a drug previously taken and printed off a prescription. He said, ‘Take one of these – see if they work.’

‘And if they don’t?’ I said.

‘Come back because it isn’t migraine.’


For the first time in my life I was rude, snatching up the damn thing and stropping off to the door.

‘Well, bye then,’ he said.

I didn’t answer.

As you can see this is very unlike me. Usually I’m charming, cheerful and hugely polite. I blame it on my brain. But there was more to come.

I walked into the pharmacy next door and the lovely assistant, who always seems to remember my name, said, ‘Hello, are you alright?’

She really should not have asked.

‘NO!’ I said, snatching her pen and filling in my name on the back of the prescription. ‘That lot are useless.’ I nodded in the direction of the surgery, next door. And then I said it . . . ‘Fucking useless!’

She didn’t look too distressed . . . or surprised and said, ‘Yes, we do hear that from time to time.’

‘Bastard!’ I said. ‘Useless bastards.’

We chatted for a bit and then I released her and took a seat . . . for 20 seconds. The other assistant called my name and I navigated my way to the counter. She fluttered the prescription in her hand and said, ‘Sorry, we don’t have these. We can get them for tomorrow?’

My first assistant screeched, ‘Oh, God, no, don’t tell her that!’

I simply held up my palms to the heavens and said calmly and with a bit of a snort, ‘Don’t worry. I’ll just drop down dead and save everyone any further trouble.’ I can do drama when required.

She looked worried . . . but then I laughed – well, snorted really. My vision had returned, some of my good humour – though I did hurl out mumbled curses into the ether as I walked back to the car, determined to fondle my voodoo doll on my return and twist a leg or two. Maybe even bang its head against the wall?  My imagination had no limit.

Someone once asked me if ‘they’ were in my novel. I replied, ‘Why would you be? I only write about interesting characters.’ In fact, I have never fashioned a fictional character on a real character but this may change.

I may include this ‘doctor’ in my next novel. He will be the character that dies a slow and painful death after having his ‘bits’ stung by a thousand bees. There will be a life-saving prescription on hand but, sadly, the pharmacy will have to order it in. Alas too late to save him. Oh, and perhaps a slight sting to his right eye?

Hell hath no fury like a migraine victim scorned . . . trust me on this one.

I’m off. Shouldn’t be looking at this bright screen!

And besides, I have to pick up the prescription that I won’t be taking.

Take care my lovelies x

PS A huge welcome to new blog followers! Thank you x




Doing Something Very Naughty?


I’m doing something very naughty right now.

I’m looking for two more chucks to add to my existing flock of two.

Little has decided never to lay another egg again and Flight, easily led, and frankly a bit feather-brained, has come out in sympathy and decided much the same thing.

We have been void of eggs for some months. First they moulted, then Little had the trots, and now she is casting off feathers fasting than poo off a shovel. And, as I say, they have decided that they are now pretty pets and not prepared to push another egg from their little feathered bums.

Not to worry. I can happily live with that. However, I am using it as an excuse to pop out and bring in a couple more. You see, I love the things. I think they are beautiful AND they give me good reason to get off my backside and go into the garden with them while they have a session free-ranging and murdering small critters.

I’d never wrap up against the storms and cold and venture out if it wasn’t for them. Because of them my garden is tidy and shipshape beyond words because each day, when I am out there with them, I find something to do for an hour or two – even in the winter months.

And I hardly need to mention the pleasure of summertime chuck watching. Scratching around under the blackcurrant bushes, releasing the wonderful smell of sunshine-warmed fruits. Rolling upside down in the dry, dusty areas beneath the shrubs. Chasing Chea through the undergrowth. (I’m talking about the chucks, by the way, not me) I gave up chasing Chea through the undergrowth some time ago.

They have their pecking order, I guess, but they are such good friends, and as close as paint on a wall, that I really don’t know who the top chuck is. Little swings between thinking she is Flight’s mother and/or lover. She clucks and goes mental when she spies a treat and brings Flight running to scoff it. She’s a strange creature – but then aren’t we all in our own barmy ways? I fear she is changing gender and will start to crow any day now.

If I go ahead and introduce two more chucks I will have to keep them separate from Little and Flight for a while but that won’t be too difficult. They have a large summer-house and it’s already divided down the centre with a large pop hole in the middle, so it would just be a matter of temporarily netting the hole. That way they could see each other and issue threats and warnings but never be in the position to carry them out. And the radio could still be heard from both sides . . . I kid you not. Well, it gets boring for them when it’s raining and they don’t want to come out. A bit of Radio 2 and Ken Bruce in the morning cheers them up no end. Although, I do have to admit that only the chucks on the left hand side of the divide would see the clock. Those on the right wouldn’t have a clue what time it was!

I’ll think about it a tad more.

12200518_10153638931713808_774235460_nTake care my lovelies x


A Tough Old Bird For Christmas Lunch?



I’d like to wish all readers of this blog a Merry Christmas.

And not only that.

I’d also like to wish you peace, health, and the company – or precious memories – of loved ones.

We will be having a gentle and quiet Christmas Day. There won’t be mass excitement and the sound of ripping wrapping as dozens of gifts are exposed. As usual we can’t think of a thing to buy each other – though Richard did sneak in with red roses and a Christmas card for me last night. Sweet, but I think he was trying to regain lost ground from the weekend when we had a blazing row about precious nothing.

Many of our ‘rows’ take place in the car, usually on the way to the supermarket. Normally, he doesn’t have to suffer food shopping but since that pile of crap that sits on the drive, spewing oil everywhere, has given up the ghost, I have no car until he comes home from work.

At least we kept the argument festive, bawling at each other over the sounds of We Wish You a Merry Christmas and Silent Night Holy Night playing on the radio. But, I digress.

We will have Richard’s mother, Betty, for Christmas lunch – not literally, obviously, she’s far too tough for that and besides, I’m a vegetarian.

Richard will take her home late afternoon and I’ll have the chucks out for a bit and give them their Christmas treat – access to the vegetable plot so that they can murder a few bugs and things and Chea will join me, no doubt. Flight (grey chuck) has decided that she is in no way afraid of Chea and now attempts to spear her with her beak at every possible occasion. Have you ever smacked a chicken for being bossy?

After this we will watch TV and eat stuff and I’ll try to stay awake long enough to watch Downton Abbey in the evening.

If I make this sound sad, or boring, or nothing special then forgive me. Of course it’s special. It just isn’t going to be rip-roaring. I’m not going to look round and see Mum basting the turkey, or Dad throwing another log on the fire. I won’t see my son, excited and giggling, opening his presents. Mum and Dad are Christmassing with the angels and Matt will be with his own children watching them opening their presents.

All things pass.

I know this – now.

I just wish I’d been more aware of it at the time.

But we aren’t, are we? We think these things will go on for ever. They don’t.

Sod it . . . I’m drifting into morbidity here and I truly don’t mean to. In fact . . .

Our rip-roaring Christmas Day will be delayed by one day until Boxing Day when Matt will bring the kiddies over and the walls of the house will shake and vibrate with the sounds of excited grandchildren opening their gifts.

Chea will flee for the quiet sanctuary of garden and not return until they have left. They hurt her eardrums.

They will leave after lunch. Chea will return. Richard will vac the house and fill the bins with discarded wrapping paper and then we will er . . . settle in front of the TV, eat stuff and possibly find some small thing to argue about. We really like to keep things normal – even at Christmas. Actually, thinking about it, Richard will be zonked-out after the grandchildren so it may well be a silent night?

And for those of you who think I’m horrid to him I’ll just say that I am secretly negotiating for a Land Rover expert to pop round and put the pile of crap back together for him at great expense. He, Richard, has done his normal trick and given up – though he swears he hasn’t and ‘will have another go at it when the weather is drier,’ so I figure that would be a nice Christmas present. It’s the only thing he needs, and let’s face it, the sooner the heap is back on the road the sooner I can have the car back and the sooner I can shop alone, and that will reduce the arguments to the house only? So a win win situation?

Right, I’m off to do something.santa

Take care, stay safe, and a Merry Christmas my friends. xxx

Should Auld Acquaintance Be Forgot . . . Should it?


I’m not a great one for looking back or for making resolutions come January 1st. I suppose a big part of the ‘no resolutions’ thing is due to the fact that now, at the age I am at, I have just about sorted out the shape and weight of my own skin and I’m happy to say that I am comfortable in it.

I’m not saying that I’m perfect . . . although?

No, of course I’m not perfect. I’m a nightmare.

I rant and rave. I’m hugely opinionated. I ride Richard way too hard most of the time. I fail to have long-term friendships because I expect too much of people. I never forget and rarely forgive a hurt.  I have principles and standards that are way too high for the average human being to accept. I expect trust and honesty.

These things, and more, stain my character.

But, this is my character and no matter what, it isn’t going to change now.

In my defence I could say that although I ride family and friends almost into the ground I will defend them to the end. I may exhaust them but I will never let anyone else do the same. I would kill and take a bullet for my son and grandchildren. I may have to consider the situation regarding Richard?

I’m joking.

So, no, I’m not a great one for looking back –  and the forward bit will come of its own accord –  God willing –  but these next few months will bring changes. Of this I am pretty sure.

Come the new year Richard will be redundant and out of a job. I don’t know where this will lead. In the past he has always said that we couldn’t leave this area because the job was ‘just up the road’ and it paid well. With the job gone we no longer have that restriction. I only returned to this town, twenty-four years ago, to be near to my ageing parents, should they need me, but they are both now long gone and resting with the angels. We could now find that little two-up two-down cottage and paddock in the country. OK, so it would have to be in deepest rural Scotland or Wales but it is a possibility.

And come the new year I have to find the answer to a very big question – do I want to continue writing?

The urge I guess will always be there, and of late I have dabbled with illustrations for my next children’s book, but it is so hard trying to promote and sell books – especially for someone like me who is utterly hopeless at selling herself.  I enjoy the time spent on social media – mostly – but when I try to justify the hours and energy spent in attempting to sell my books I truly have to ask myself – is it worth it? Is too much life passing me by?

I am in the fortunate position of being able to do pretty much as I like with my days so it isn’t that ‘promoting’ is taking me away from other things  – but just the same, it does come as pretty soul-destroying when hours and hours of time and effort produce little or nothing. I know, for a fact, that I am not alone with this ‘feeling.’ I know of other authors who swear they will never type another word and question is it worth it. Perhaps it all comes down to – do we write because we have to –  or do we write because we want to sell books and entertain readers with our imaginings?

I have ‘met’ some lovely people, helpful and encouraging to a fault, but I have also met some pricks. I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to type that word because I’m trying to be serious here but it’s true.

These, then, are my next two big ‘unknowns.’

The unknown should probably frighten me but it doesn’t.

My base is strong. The towers may crack. They may even fall. My castle may be nothing more than dust on the ground? But the base will still be there and if you have a base you have the ability to rebuild, change things around a little.

There may well be things that I cannot change and rearranging as the years flash past but for now I will sit-a-spell and think.

Whoa! How serious was this?240_F_82362366_08xDmEeULu0A5RAodKLKnlmgCuPmanuQ

See, I can be serious.

All for now.

Take care my lovelies x


It’s Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas . . .Really?


Believe it or believe it not – the Christmas cards went into the post yesterday! I know, weird hey? And especially more so from my point of view. I’ve surprised even myself with such pre-Christmas efficiency.

Christmas presents bought, wrapped and hidden away.

Cards scrawled on, sealed and posted. Although, to be honest, I did have a major meltdown over the Christmas cards. You see, I know for a fact that I bought the ‘special’ cards some time ago. You know, the ones for brothers, grandchildren, son etc. and I stored them somewhere safe. So sodding safe that despite turning every drawer and cupboard inside out they remained safe – and hidden/lost. So, I did what anyone would do in this situation – swear and then go out and buy some more. Then, having bought the ‘special’ cards again, I wrote the wrong thing in Jake’s card and had to rip it up. Now I need to buy him another.

Even the house is trimmed.

What next? Santa Claus driving his reindeer across the sky, narrowly avoiding the neighbour’s horrendously high conifers? OK, so now I’m being silly. Rudolph wouldn’t guide the sleigh anywhere near to trees – he’s an expert leader-of-the-reindeer team when all is said and done.

What am I talking about?

OK, I’m going to go all ‘bookish’ on you now. Well, I never do – do I? I told you last time – or the time before – that the man of the house is being made redundant in the New Year? Well, it’s been moved forward to New Year’s Eve now so I figure that it’s time I put my ‘shyness’ and stupidity behind me and attempted to sell some books.

Actually, I have done 3 little craft fairs in the last few weeks. I used to do these before – but not with books – no, I used to make those little imitation baskets of fruits and vegetables, when they were all the rage, so I am well used to craft fairs. This is not always the terminology I used, depending on the footfall and the willingness to buy by the attendees. Often they were termed as Crap Fairs and an accompanying bottle of sherry was required to get through the day.  But I digress.

I did three craft fairs with my books and it was OK. Possibly attempting to sell books in a library was a bit off the scale? Coals to Newcastle and all that. But whatever . . .

So, this is it . . . I have recently had a lovely review for Witch Ever Way You Look At It from Lisl Zlitni at https://beforethesecondsleep.wordpress.com/2015/12/04/book-review-witch-ever-way-you-look-at-it/ and, because I like the book, well, we like some more than others, don’t we, I am putting it on promo’ this Thursday through to Sunday. It will be available for 99p to download. I’m also offering a signed paperback copy of the book, see below.

If I can squeeze in another promo’ before Christmas I will offer my children’s book, Prince Regal and the Forgotten Friends, for the same download price, 99p. However, you may also buy a signed copy of this, and if you get your skates on I’ll be sure to post it in time for Christmas. So . . .

If you have a PayPal account and would like a signed/unsigned copy of either book please email me;  jenngor@hotmail.co.uk and I’ll pop one in the post – as long as I haven’t lost all copies in the house somewhere.

Witch Ever £8.99 (includes pp to mainland UK)

Prince Regal £6.50 (includes pp to mainland UK)

(Non mainland posting please enquire)

That’s it – my attempts at being bookish. Did I succeed – or do you have to be a toothless parrot to do that?

I know, I’m acting very weird today, aren’t I? Even my left eye has started twitching!

Better go

joint picture

Take care my lovelies x




Book Review: Witch Ever Way You Look At It

before the second sleep

Witch Ever Way You Look At It

By Jennie Orbell

Sometimes books appear in your midst as if by magic. Or, maybe not magic, though there do seem to be other forces whispering into your ear even when you’d decided you were just window shopping.

witchIn my case recently the voices within had been beckoning to me, because once I’d seen it initially, I never really could forget about it. Aye, I admit it, the cover was the first draw, but why not? It’s a great visual: it’s fun, and sassy and well done. And, of course, the play on words gives a little more insight into the plot.

Ah, no wonder the magic.

Witch Ever Way You Look At It centers on Annie and Lizzie, best friends who are there for each other through thick and thin. One year earlier Lizzie had lost her husband, the love of…

View original post 1,288 more words

Deck The Halls With . . .Yeah, Whatever!


It’s ‘that most wonderful time of the year,’ again.

Yeah, right, of course it is.

Well, not in this house. Not right now.

I’ve spent three hours this morning making the house Christmassy . . . and lovely . . . and bright . . . and welcoming. And all this with a pounding migraine brought on by Richard buying some bloody tree lights that when placed on the tree last night, and switched on, were so blinding that they made me feel sick and clutch my head in horror. I told him I couldn’t live with them like that because they would give me a migraine.

He went off on one, ripping them from the tree and saying that I was being ridiculous and that they were L.E.D lights and meant to be bright and that I’d be fine.

Really? Well, I wasn’t – and I’m not – because this morning I woke with a migraine.

Determined to finish-off the tree and get the stupid bits on it I struggled on . . . and on . . . and on until it was finished. Then, I decided it looked wrong where it stood and so I attempted to move it across the lounge by grabbing the stem and lifting it. Unfortunately the top half of the tree came away in my hands and while Chea sat grinning I hung on to half a tree that swayed and swung, with balls crashing down and the fairy tipping arse over head, until I could finally piece it back together. By this time Chea was patting a bauble that skidded across the floorboards and ended up under my bare foot.

The whole lounge has been rearranged to ‘fit in’ this damn tree and I now need a double plug because only half the lights can be plugged in where it is.

I am covered in glitter. Chea is covered in glitter. And the lounge is covered in glitter. And I still have a migraine.

Other than this everything is hunky dory.

Well, almost.

Richard came home last Thursday and announced that, come 31st of this month, he is being made redundant. Yep! Happy New Year!

He pretends that he’s coping with the news but I know him and I know he isn’t. He is terrified of the unknown. He isn’t the adventurous, ‘let’s throw caution to the wind type.’ He likes the confines of a comfy box. He likes continuity and knowing where his next crust of bread is coming from.

Obviously I’ve thrown in my two pennyworth.

You see, I don’t view it as the end of the world. I see it as one door closing, allowing another to open. Who knows where it will lead but it doesn’t have to lead to gloom and doom, does it? And we will cope. We will review the situation and take it from there.

He said, after I’d delivered my positive, uplifting speech of how everything was going to be fine and that this should be viewed as exciting, ‘I don’t know what I would do without you in my life.’


And then he added, ‘no, honestly, I really don’t know what I would do without you.’

So, why did he try to blind me with those bloody lights? Why did he expect me to live with them when I knew they would give me a migraine?

And another thing – his ‘Betsy’ Land Rover has thrown in the towel and stands abandoned and without a floor where he has attempted to repair the old pile of crap – and failed. ‘She’ now needs a ‘few bits’ and time spending on her to get her back on the road. This has been the situation for the last fortnight during which time he has used the car for work and I have either been stuck here in the house or had to walk to places.

Apparently, he is going to fettle and whatever with the old dear this weekend. I’m off to a craft fair with my books so he can do what he likes.

Is it coming across that he isn’t my favourite human right now?

Think I’m rambling –  and I probably shouldn’t even be attempting to write this blog with the equivalent of an axe stuck in my head. So, apologies for all the bits that don’t make sense etc – but then, hey, I don’t need a migraine for my blogs not to make sense, do I? Don’t answer that.

Right, off to vacuum myself . . .  and shake the glitter from Chea – that’s if I can extract her from the wreath that she is about to put her head through!

Take care x20151203_093022



26th November And The Christmas Pressie Shopping Is Done!


I can’t believe I’m going to say this because it is so unlike me, usually I’m a 24th December shopper, but . . . I now have all my Christmas presents – bought, wrapped, and stored away from prying eyes.

To be honest it’s a great feeling but I do have to account most of this early bird activity to Richard – the ‘let’s-click-on-that-and-buy-it-even-though-we-don’t-need-it’ manic Ebayer.  His little fingers are almost worn down to the bone with all the internet activity.

Instead of trotting along to Argos, or Toys R Us, Richard has bought from the internet. This is OK, in theory, but he clears off to work and I’m having to stay focused on the front door as parcel after parcel arrives.

We had a little scan around Tesco last Saturday, looking for wrapping paper and any other ‘bits’ for stocking fillers for Jake and Grace. They didn’t need anything else but while Richard was watching some woman fingering bras in the clothes section, I came across a lovely little parrot in a cage. Not a real parrot, obviously, no, a stuffed toy thingy. It had one of those little button things that you press and it squawks and such like – so I pressed it – and yep, it squawked. Then I happened to read the box and it said it repeated anything you said to it, so I tried it out, and it did. I was having great fun as Richard sidled up, having lost interest in the woman buying the bra. Either that or she’d reported him to the store’s security team?

‘Look at this!’ I exclaimed. ‘Isn’t it brilliant? It repeats everything you say. I think we should get it for Grace.’

Richard squinted a bit (he’s half blind at close range) and then pressed the button. Then, standing in the middle of Tesco’s he spoke his message into the parrot. A second later it squawked out, ‘Shop at ASDA!’

‘You idiot?’ I said. This only served to make him laugh louder. Then he pressed the buttons on every parrot on the shelf and within seconds the place was filled with, ‘Shop at Asda! Shop at Asda! Shop at Asda!’ etc. etc.

He thought this most amusing – did I mention that he has a weird sense of humour?

Richard, being Richard, couldn’t leave it at that and strains of, ‘you sexy beast, you sexy beast, you sexy beast,’ echoed up and down the aisle.

I grabbed one parrot for Grace and left him to it.

We giggled most of the way home as the parrot, squashed under 3 bags of frozen oven chips and 2 bags of Quorn sausages, gave intermittent squawks each time the car went over a bump and a frozen sausage triggered its button thingy.

So, then, when we got home, we wrapped everything. When I say ‘we’ I mean Richard sat at the table playing with the parrot, teaching it a whole new vocabulary, and I wrapped everything.

The only present remaining to buy is mine – and Richard’s. But we probably won’t bother. That’s not because we are mean or don’t think enough of each other to buy gifts, no, it’s because neither of us can ever come up with something we need, or would like.

At least the ‘Tesco’ trip was less stressful than the Morrison’s shop the other day.

I was there at the crack of dawn, stuffing cat food into the basket – 7 foils for £3 – so I bought 21. Chea is like a blancmange, slipping out sideways when she squats. I must, in her defence –  and mine, because I don’t want you thinking that I’m such a crap owner that I over feed her,  admit to her having grown a coat so thick that it isn’t dissimilar to the 70s shag pile that frequented homes. Anyway, I digress . . .

Back to Morrison’s. I’d thrown the cat food foils into the trolley and was just fingering a cheapo Christmas jumper when there was an almighty thud and the whole store blacked out. This has never happened to me before and frankly it was a tad worrying. I half expected armed robbers to be swooping down the aisles at any moment demanding my pearls and best leather boots. I thought these places had emergency generators that kicked in?

I stood chatting to a woman – as you do – for ages, well, ten minutes, and then with a thud the lights came back on. I then made a fast retreat to the checkout only to find that I’d thrown the Christmas jumper, that I was merely looking at, into the trolley and was, now, loading it onto the conveyor belt.

So, I now have a penguin Christmas jumper. Yep, I know, sad or what?

Actually, thinking about it, perhaps I do know what I can get Richard for Christmas . . . but then again, could I live with the squawking? But, then again, I already live with his!

Later dudes . . .christmas-tree_large - Copy



Three Things To Report . . .


Just a quickie today. It’s hammering down here in good old Leicestershire and I have just got totally drenched loading shopping  – mainly Chea’s food and bottles of still water –  because they were on offer – into the car boot.

I kept the visit as short as possible and tried to avoid the sparkly Christmas tree that stood near the hand baskets waiting to take out an eye or two when some shopper bent to grab a basket. I also, mainly, ignored the golden reindeer floating above the ‘naughty’ aisles, luring kiddies and adults, with no will power, to buy enormous boxes of biscuits/chocolates and such crap.

I did succumb to a couple of large bags of crisps – well you do, don’t you? Besides, if I get a migraine I crave salt so that’s my excuse. Also, we are working our way through the second season of Prison Break so we need something to munch on as we sit glued to the thing. VERY GOOD in my opinion. And here’s a refreshing fact – Prison Break doesn’t rely on explicit sex and the continual use of the F word to make it riveting viewing. Just twists, turns, great mix of  characters, and brilliant acting. Hmm . .  .I digress

I have three things to quickly report.

I. I now have a page for Two Chucks and a Tabby Cat.


2. And a group for Two Chucks and a Tabby Cat.


Pop over and take a look? Like the page? Join the group? All self-explanatory when you check it out.

3.The third thing that I have to report is my greatest achievement of the year!

Sold a million books? Won the lottery?


I’ve pruned the apple tree.


I’ve pruned the apple tree.

This may not seem like a huge thing to you –  or, in fact, much of an achievement, but you see I needed the really long ladder to do it and I’m terrified of heights. Also, because of my buggered-up neck joints I can’t look up for more than 30 seconds without being in extreme pain. So, I have to climb as high as possible so that the branch that requires sawing is at waist height. The tree is around thirty years old and canker ridden. Despite this it still produces lovely cooking apples each year so I thought it was time it had a bit of attention. It hasn’t been pruned at all, in all that time, so it was a bit of a task. However, with one hand sawing and one hand white with hanging on to a branch I succeeded. Within the hour the branches lay on the floor and the tree stood looking bare and sorry for itself.

There won’t be any apples next year, of this I am certain, but if I haven’t killed it it will have a lovely flush of growth next year and possible produce apples the following year.

You may ask, ‘Why didn’t Richard prune it?’


If you remember, Richard had a shoulder op’ last New Year and he still struggles with it. He did say he would do it –  but time and tide and all that. Besides, I couldn’t stand the stress of having to hold the ladder while he tottered up in the highest branches and bellowed, ‘Which one?’


‘Not that one, Idiot.’

‘Well, that’s the best I can do!’

So, being a Scorpio ‘perfectionist’ I knew I could do better –  and without causing myself undue stress.

He hasn’t been up the garden yet, so he still doesn’t know the tree has been pruned. He will though, when he falls over the branches that I still haven’t finished clearing up!

So, my friends, pruning the apple tree has been my greatest accomplishment this year –  to date. What’s been yours?

Catch you soon.11794231_10153461732253808_5864114962992857932_o (2) - Copy

Take care my lovelies x

Kid Me Not Sunbeam!

Hi All.

You’ve heard the saying, ‘these things are sent to try us?’ Well, frankly, I must be the most ‘tried’ person on the planet.

I guess the main problem stems from the sad fact that I rarely know what I’m doing and for some misplaced reason I think I can learn as I go. This sadly is not always true.

Take, for instance, filling in 4 sheets of paper to allow me to purchase ISBNs. Simple as falling off a log? No! Far more difficult and the reason is . . . I don’t understand the lingo, the gobbledygook of it all.

I consider it to be akin to most nerdy ‘techie’ things. Make it is complicated as possible so that the average human being understands sod all and, by default, they, the nerds, appear even more intelligent.

Just one thing that rattled my cage last night and caused me to beat my head on the table while Chea sat inches away, shaking her head and wishing someone intelligent had ‘rescued’ her from the RSPCA. Well, too late, sunbeam.

Taking of Chea. I spent last Saturday at a craft fair selling my books. OK, I’m still not rich but it was fun and I have confirmed another in December . . . but, I digress.

While I was out Richard was in charge of all things . . . Chea, poo picking the chucks, patrolling them while they murdered insects on their daily scratch around, cleaning the filter box to the pond etc. These things, I thought, were within his scope. Wrong.

I came home to Richard, hands on hips (defensive pose if you ask me?) and slightly twitching. He said, ‘Everything is fine, chucks done, pond done and I’ve got up all the fallen leaves from the top of the garden.’

‘Good,’ I said.

Hands still on hips.

‘And how’s Chea?’

He frantically dashed to the kettle. ‘Want a cup of tea?’ he said.

‘Chea?’ I said.

‘Well . . . ‘

When Richard starts a sentence with ‘well,’ AND he’s making tea it’s not a good sign.

‘What’s happened?’ I said.

‘Well . . . when I was picking up the leaves I heard a commotion two doors away, cats spitting and howling and going nuts.’


‘Yes,’ he said, hiding behind the protection of the now boiled kettle.

‘I shook the crunchies!’ he exclaimed.

‘The crunchies?’

‘Yes, you know, to get her in, but she didn’t come back for ages, and when she did finally come back she was limping.’



Right on cue the little wounded soldier appeared from upstairs, hobbling on 3 legs and casting accusing glances at Richard.

By morning she was placing the foot to the floor and the next day she was sound. She wasn’t too bright yesterday so I’m keeping an eye on her in case it was a bite and it starts to abscess. She is due a yearly booster but we have both been putting off taking her to the vet. Last time she was there she incited every cat, in the pre op room, to turn into hissing, spitting demons. She had to be sedated through the cage because the vet dare not pick her up! She hates the vet with a vengeance, almost as much as I hate attempting to fill in forms.

Regarding book sales, because I did mention them, up the page a bit, I just want to set the record straight. I’ve been meaning to mention this before but have never been in the kind of mood I need to be in to mention it. Today I AM in that kind of mood.

When self-published authors are selling lots of books the following fact is void BUT when self-published authors are not selling books, and their sales flat line (and they do) all promises of, ‘I’m just off to buy your book now,’ and ‘going to buy your book to’ . . .  A. Take on holiday. B. Send to a friend. C. Light the fire with. D. Use as a door stop, doesn’t cut the mustard. If our books flat line it’s pretty bloody obvious that no one bought a copy for any of the above reasons or for any other reason. You did not buy the book! And that’s fine, perfectly, absolutely, categorically fine . . . but don’t lie and pretend that you have. OK? There’s no need. Truly. A friend of mine was most upset by promises that didn’t materialise and the long blue line remained a long blue line without a single ‘spike.’

So, if I’ve offended anyone by saying this, tough, don’t lie to me. I may be an idiot but I’m not stupid . . . and, what’s more, I doubt other authors are stupid either.

#hums and shuffles off into the distance!

Take care my lovelies x2015-02-22 20.49.39