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diemzone: (Default)
Thursday, October 20th, 2011 16:38
You know, I cannot account for the fact that I have never looked into any other books by Stella Gibbons. I loved Cold Comfort Farm but it did not occur to me to look for anything else. Have now downloaded to my Kindle 'Nightingale Wood' which sounds like fun.
diemzone: (Default)
Wednesday, October 19th, 2011 16:09
Had small nephew here for a couple of hours. He's very useful for motivating me to clean the house. We were upstairs, just after I'd taken him to the bathroom ('Need a Weee!!!) He followed me into the room we were dusting and announced, "I've got a big dick!" with such pride and glee.
I slowly turned round, ready to say "How nice for you," and saw that he had found my telescoping fluffy duster - which indeed has a very big stick. Relief.

Haven't been out and about much as Spouse has my car while his is in garage. Strange to be back to the old days when I couldn't break up the time alone with a quick trip out somewhere. On the one hand, I probably don't spend as much money. On the other hand, I eat a lot more chocolate.

Before I went to sleep last night I came up with a new 'warping' technology that would enable ftl travel for my sex-changing pacific-island humanoids which would make them indispensable to a crew. Have a feeling I'm missing an important bit, probably fell asleep too soon. something about the two points of the 'warp' being quantum entangled and manipulated via mutated brain part in SCPIH. Or maybe I dreamed the whole thing. Sigh.
diemzone: (Default)
Wednesday, October 12th, 2011 12:22
Bored now. Dunno why. Got plenty to do, lots of things I can read, write, paint, crochet, weed, cook, but...

Feel too restless. And it's cold. Usually when I get cold I just curl up and read in a nice warm room, or under a nice warm blanket I've made myself. Cosy. Dont' feel like it today.


Decided to get hair cut. That'll make my neck cold too. Possibly a mistake. Shall try for something less drastic and yet easy to look after. An impossible dream? Possibly. Probably. May come back looking like a skinhead. Or a lollipop. No, too fat to be a lollipop. Fuzzy Menhir?

Should stop blathering, I suppose.

Made a nice meal last night. Spouse suitably impressed. Always impressed by my producing good food. It's enough to give one a complex. The meal wasn't complex though. Possibly the most straighforward meal one can produce. Throw tray full of chilli-sauce covered prawns into hot oven for a few minutes, serve with Thai Lime rice. Easy, delicious. Mmmmmm.

May make an apple pie later. Or cakes. Or xmas cake.
Should be finishing baby blanket. Or MiL's new bedspread. Or the book. Always the book. Seem to have ground to a halt again. Been writing though, but something else. A kind of addendum to a short story I wrote ages ago. I don't do short stories much. At all really. Can't remember the last time I did one. This one was always going to be one episode of a series. Does that count as a short story? Concerns the discovery of sex-changing species of human found on remote pacific group of islands.

I'm cold still. Coffee time, I think. And ginger snaps.
diemzone: (Default)
Monday, October 10th, 2011 12:56
This morning the efficient woman from Social Services came out. She was an Occupational Therapy Assistant (I think that's her title). She did an assessment of the flat for the Ma in Law who is now to get the back steps sorted, the bathroom made safer and easier to use, and she got in touch with the people who handle the Fall Alarms. (Care Connect, who rang back within the hour and arranged to come out and to a demo on Wednesday). Kudos to all for the speed of response.

During the interview with the OTA it transpired that MiL had had another fall yesterday. As we discussed it, MiL showed herself confused again as to why we were all so anxious about her falls (small f). I explained again about the difference between a fall (small f, missing a chair, rising badly etc) and a FALL which is a TIA, or a mini-stroke, which is different because it is like a micro-blackout, she is unable to reach out to save herself and often doesn't remember falling at all. She seemed relieved at the explanation but I'm sure I'll have to explain all over again in a fortnight or so. This is the developing pattern.

I'm going to give her my adjustable, foldable walking stick. I love it but her need is greater than mine and I can happily order another one online. With daisies on! She's very resistant to the whole idea of using a stick but I can remind her that the Doctor said to do it. She's of the generation of 'Doctor knows best' tyranny and will do as the Doctor says. Mostly. Apart from when she's in one of her "Ha! What do Doctors know?" moods.

On a plus note. She's happy with Stupid the computer. She can switch it on, get skype to talk to us, and her other offspring's families, and even play patience. A bit.
diemzone: (Default)
Wednesday, October 5th, 2011 11:13
Monday night,popped in on MiL so Youngest Daughter, who was up on business trip for the day, could see her and her new flat.
As she was in the kitchen, putting kettle on I went in to talk to her.
She had another fall on Monday morning. But she didn't hit her head. "I ended up in the shoes!" she told me and laughed. Only told me about it because I noticed a new bruise on her arm. "That looks awful," I said.
"I'll put a cardigan over it," she said.
"That's not what I meant!"

Went back to MiL's place last night to set up her broadband and pc. Telephone had been switched on, setup went smoothly. Got her to play with skype a bit and showed her spider solitaire as a way of getting used to moving the mouse, clicking and co-ordinating. If anyone skypes her, I hope they ring for a very long time, as she takes ages to get the cursor to the answer button. It will get better with time and practice, of course, but at the moment she just needs encouragement.

Wind has got up today, (which is more than I did, am still in pyjamas. Disgrace) and things are blowing around my house. Time I put clothes on and tried to rescue my milkbottle cover.

Something I noticed recently. Clothes. Hardly anyone seems to pronounce the 'th' in Clothes. Makes it Close. Am I just slow to notice?
diemzone: (Default)
Wednesday, September 28th, 2011 12:13
Am babysitting SN while his Mum goes for a job interview.
First he helped me clean. "This room is all dirty!"
"Yes, it is," I admitted, shamed.

Then we went outside. He had brought his Cars DVD to watch but happily left it behind to go and explore the garden, the shed, and to play with toys. Who said children are slaves to tv?
He seized on the little pink pram that we've had since the Tallest Grand-daughter was 1, and picked up 'his' baby (the smaller of the two dolls that go in it), put her in the pram and then piled in the electronic barking dog (mercifully with dead batteries) and we decided to go for a walk. I had been deadheading a few roses and he picked off all the petals of the finished flowers "For my baby" and put them under the little pillow. We got as far as the front path when he stopped and shook out the blanket and tucked it in again. Two more steps and another stop "i need more petals"
I provided a nasturtium.
"Under the pillow," he said as he evicted the dog to place the flower. Then repacked the pram.
Just passing the last of the garden when he stopped, put a finger to his cheek, "Oh, I forgot. Baby needs a toy."
"Do we have to go back?"
"Yes," he was very firm about that. He dragged the pram, backwards and when he reached the nasturtium patch, quickly grabbed another one. Hmmmm. Not a finished flower. On the other hand, it's autumn. They're all over, I suppose.
On we went, me trying to convince myself that I wasn't being soft. Ha.
Every few yards SN stopped the pram to shake out the blanket and primp the baby. I'm pretty sure I've never seen his mother behave like that so he's probably got it from observing other mothers with prams at his sister's school gates. Don't think they put a dog in with the baby though.

He's now in the back garden, blowing bubbles. I've barricaded the back gate, as he's worked out how to open it, and I can see him from the windows of the kitchen and conservatory. It's a lovely thing, to watch a child unselfconsciously playing in the sunshine; and even lovelier to think that next year there will be another one. Grandson on the grass. Can't wait.
I'll even weed it, in anticipation.
diemzone: (Default)
Wednesday, September 21st, 2011 18:22
Spouse is getting a new car. He's very happy. It'a a bargain. Yey.

Watching Tim Minchin on TV. Brill.
diemzone: (Default)
Tuesday, September 20th, 2011 09:13
Today I have to stay in and wait for a delivery - cot top changers for the new cots. For my part-baked grandson. With luck that will mean I have time to finish the first painting for his room.
diemzone: (Default)
Tuesday, September 20th, 2011 09:07
Problems notifying everyone of move - not people but companies. Almost everyone has some kind of online presence so, in theory, it ought to be easy to notify all the utilities, councils etc of MiL's change of address. Unfortunately, one problem that keeps arising is that many companies are using the same, faulty, address location database. Currys use it, but Comet don't. The dentist uses it, but the council doesn't, the energy companies use it .... you've got the picture. Whoever inputted data on the MiL's new street stopped at 18. She lives at 19. If there is a manual input that's fine, but rare.

As her phone isn't in yet, that means we either write, take her and all her paperwork down to my house to phone, or use my mobile phone (eeeeeek! cost!)

In addition, few of the "help" pages help at all on these websites. The Frequently Asked Questions are all devised by the company to tell you what "they" want you to know, not answer your questions, and the 'contact us' into is usually lacking in the method we want to use.
Sooooooooooooooooo annoyed right now.
diemzone: (Default)
Sunday, September 18th, 2011 09:59
Spent Saturday with MiL. Took her to see about getting a laptop. Everyone sold out. Spouse going to see if she wants to drive to Comet in Durham to see if they have the one she wants. Online, it says they have stock.

Started the new gardening project, did a bit of weeding and planted some spring bulbs for MiL in her new garden. It's a start.

MiL has nice man in upstairs flat, another in ajoining neighbour's flat (only joins on one side) and Nice Man Upstairs came to introduce himself and give us information about stuff. He volunteered to put MiL's wheelie bins out and bring them back for her. VERY nice man. Told her she was surrounded by men. She twinkled at me, grinned and said, "That's just the way I like it." She's a floosie, I told her.

She's now settling into flat, has lost that - well, lost - look and now that she has pictures on the wall (Spouse + drill) and books on shelves (Me, I know priorities when I see them).

Am feeling very breathless this morning so am taking it easy. Is sister in law's birthday today so will make cake. Bake a Bakewell for Sunday pud and apart from that, shall do nothing. I want to get on with painting for Part-Baked Grandson's room.

Dammit. I let tea get cold.
diemzone: (Default)
Sunday, September 11th, 2011 09:33
Second day of moving Ma in Law into her new flat started well, we took her down to retail park to buy a new fridge and a new telly, got back around lunchtime and had a sandwich before settling in to serious unpacking and re-arranging. She couldn't be persuaded to part with a thing, intending to put 40 years' of stuff from a three-bedroomed semi (with loft) into a small, two-bedroomed flat. This caused a lot of frustration but we were managing it.

MiL and I were standing over a couple of bags and boxes, placed on a table for easy reach. I found the second handset for the cordless phones and asked her if she wanted that in the front bedroom.
"Yes," she said.
"Righto," I said.
And then she went. She just started to fall sideways, I could see she was headed for the tv, a corner, the edge or the screen, all were horrible options. I lunged forward, pulling myself over obstacles with my left arm while I grabbed her and tried to stop her. I sort of pivoted her away from the furniture but I wasn't close enough, or strong enough, to hold her up, she just kept going down and I went after her but she fell all the way and hit her head on the door with an almighty bang that even the family outside in the garden heard. Everyone came running and prised her off me, or me off her, or something, I'm not sure about the next few seconds. I went outside in the rain and had a small meltdown. Went back in and found Baby Bro putting her in recovery position and talking to her, Spouse on the phone explaining to the 999 operator. The kids, small niece and nephew, peering round the doorway, part curious, part scared. SiL was being efficient and I felt guilty for leaving them to it. Took the kids in back room to the toys there and explained that Gran had fallen. Em pointedly asked why Daddy was crying, and I was too, so what had happened (she knows her Gran falls so she knew there was more wrong than usual). I talked to them for a bit and went back into living room. Two rapid-response paramedic cars and a big ambulance converged on the house within about 7 minutes of the call. I think that's impressive.

They plugged her into all their machines and I explained about her medical conditions and which tablets she takes, Baby Bro told them what he'd observed after the fall - apparently she had drifted into unconsciousness and one side of her face behaved strangely so we all thought 'stroke'. She had the best of care.

We followed the ambulance with MiL and Baby Bro inside to the hospital where they did all the tests they could, hooked her up to every machine that goes 'bing' (quite frequently in fact)
and xrayed her etc.

As usual, she recovered well and they couldn't find any reason for the fall, but the doctor said she was going to set the process rolling again to have her looked at, by the falls clinic I suppose. She had looked surprised when I explained that she'd been to the falls clinic, had an MRI but had never been seen again by them. I suspect an admin foul-up over the appt she should have had.

Doctor detained Spouse for a few minutes to check he was all right, the shock was showing on him and he's the oldest of MiL's children, her next of kin, and he suffered a lot. Baby Bro was in a terrible state too, but he's a lot younger and fitter and I wasn't worried about him. Spouse went for food, though, and we had a good night's sleep. Hopefully, if MiL has slept too and not obviously impaired today, he will relax.

This morning Spouse has gone up to the flat to tidy up and await the delivery man. Unfortunately, I'm paying the price for the lunging and hanging on, the pain is quite bad so I'm resting up. Every time I close my eyes or stop concentrating on something else, all I can see is her falling and falling and not being able to reach her. Hopefully, that will go away soon. I shall go up later and very sedately put some clothes in drawers or something easy like that.

On the tenth anniversary of the WTC attacks, a family problem probably seems small beer to most folk, but we're rather fond of the daft old bat and would prefer her to be around to see her great-grandson born in November.
diemzone: (Default)
Friday, September 9th, 2011 22:10
We finally got the keys at four o'clock.
The Bros started moving stuff over while we made the wonderful discovery that Mr W hadn't cleaned the place for quite some time. SiL and I were desperately trying to hoover, clean etc while the Bros were bringing stuff in. Tension.
More arguments abounded.
Much tension and stupidity from people who should know better (including me. I really shouldn't bother.)
diemzone: (Default)
Friday, September 9th, 2011 14:43
Van hire man wouldn't accept passport as ID. As most of our bills are paperless and the rest are in my name, this presents a problem. He's off now to try for a third time to get the van. Still no call from solicitor releasing the keys.

It's now quarter to three, soon time to fetch niece from school. We were all hoping to get much of the moving done during school hours. So that's not happening at all. At this rate we'll be moving in the dark.

Nephew is in my garden with a bubble-sword, making bubbles (occasionally) and trying to clean my patio (with the kneeler and water from the rain-barrel).
He's just run in yelling, "It's going to rain!"
Not so far.

Time for a cup of tea. If nothing else, by the laws of the universe that seem to be in play, we'll end up having to leave it.

We can hope.
diemzone: (Default)
Friday, September 9th, 2011 13:29
Mr B has recalled movers. Spouse has gone to get van. still no keys.
diemzone: (Default)
Friday, September 9th, 2011 12:45
Chain consists of First Time Buyer, Mr B, MiL and Mr W. FTB is ready to go, we are ready to go, Mr W has already gone. Mr B has sent his movers home because he thought it wasn't happening today. Our solic. insists he can't do that. He's committed now. Someone didn't explain that to him.

Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaarrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrggggggggggggggghhhhhhhhhhhh!
diemzone: (Default)
Friday, September 9th, 2011 11:55
Nine thirty call came at around 11:30 to say it should be going ahead soon. A kind of hopeful, yes we're doing it, almost go-ahead call. But not quite. Sis in Law is coming down with nephew to wait with me. Two congenitally waiting-phobic persons together. We have car boot loaded with all MiL's stuff that was at our houses, and we're ready to go and fetch keys. At some point.

Sigh.

Opened celebrations chocolates as consolation.

Need calm, shall go and walk round garden.
diemzone: (Default)
Friday, September 9th, 2011 10:14
Expected call now almost an hour late. This does not bode well.
diemzone: (Default)
Friday, September 9th, 2011 10:06
Listening to David Mitchell's Soapbox while I wait for game to load


Still no call.
diemzone: (Default)
Friday, September 9th, 2011 10:03
Game downloading patch. Takes ages. More waiting.

I'm not good at waiting. You'd never guess, would you?
diemzone: (Default)
Friday, September 9th, 2011 10:01
Just had horrible thought. Whether we move MiL today or next Monday, or Tuesday or whenever, as soon as that tension is eased we will be into final weeks of Middle Daughter's pregnancy, full of waiting, and worrying, and wondering.

MD - yes you - keep feet up and telephone handy. :)

10:05 am. Still no call.