Friday 29 January 2021

Thank You


Thank you for all the comments on my last post.

You are, always have been, and always will be good friends.

Wednesday 27 January 2021

To Be What Others Expect of You


Just one weekend 

Was all it took

It gave me time to be.  

Not to think ... to just be.

Minimal phone interaction

No blogging

No Facebook or Instagram

Some sorting through things

Numerous doggy walks


Much reading




Sitting staring into space with an open, empty mind.  

Calming and soothing and a realisation followed.

I hadn't picked up my camera at all, I hadn't once thought ... 'oh I must get a photo of this for the blog' or 'this would make for a good post'.  I had the weekend for me and me alone ...and it carried on forward.

I dared to take more time away than I said I would and the emails and messages started.  

'Are you okay?'

'Why haven't you blogged?'

'You said you would be back after the weekend!'

Yes, it can be called concern, and to those of you that did out of a sense of concern I thank you for that.  For the couple that said 'you have let us down',  I say no I did not!!  (Oh, and I also said 'Oh fuck off ...' when I read your message ... but that's just me. 😎 )

 I warned you I was going and I went, that I dared to take longer than the weekend is tough, but I will not apologise for not supplying something that is not vital to your survival.  I am not and never have been a day in day out blogger, I have dipped in and dipped out at my will and being pressured to supply entertainment is the one sure thing to make me rebel.

But hey, that is not why I have come to a decision.

Now I am dipping out.

For longer than a weekend.

I may be back in the near or far future, when and if I have something I wish to share.  After all there is a move imminent, a house sold and a home bought, so much to do and much to be done.  A life to change and a new adventure to begin, that may or may not work out.

But for now I will live my life without a camera in my hand without a thought of what will or won't make a good blog post.  It's not that I have run out of things to say it's that I just don't want to say them to anyone but myself for a while.

Take care, stay safe and perhaps I'll see you again on here once again.

Sue xx

Oh, I meant to add the blog will remain on here for those of you who use it as a bouncing off point to get to others that you read, or in case you wish to read through old posts again.  But after a couple of days I will be switching off comments ... just to annoy the autobots and trolls  😉

Saturday 23 January 2021

Time for Some Calm


I feel it's time for some calm, so I am taking a weekend off from my computer and most of social media.  There will be dog walks ... no matter what the weather ... and much watching of calming films and series on Netflix, and reading, there will be lots of reading.

In my absence I leave you with some of my favourite YouTubers and their latest videos.  SO pull up a chair, grab yourself a nice hot drink and relax into the films.

The Cottage Fairy

So much glorious snow.  This is just the video to watch with a steaming mug of coffee in your hands.

 Apronful of Stones

Including the village of Eyam and it's story.

Fairyland Cottage

Because watching someone else clean always inspires me to do my own 😀

My Vintage Lifestyle

To keep me on track with my ration recipe cooking.

I hope you enjoyed watching these videos from just four of my favourite YouTubers.  Do you have some that you watch that are along these lines, I would love to find a few more.

Sue xx

Friday 22 January 2021

Office Bag to Office Bureau

When I lived in the Van I used this bag as my 'office', storing all sorts of papers, pens and notebooks in there.  Now I'm here at the flat I have the luxury of my lovely bureau and lots of the day to day office stuff was moved over ... but lots of stuff remained in the bag and in the spare room.

So  yesterday I decided to have a good hoick out and see if I could declutter anything from in there, anything to add to the numbers, I am currently looking for 21 items for todays figure and the spare room, where this bag is kept was my room of choice.

I kept finding things related to Challenges that I had either done or had planned to do.

Looking at the paper in the top left of this photo I remember asking readers of my Challenge blog to vote on what the next three Challenges would be.  I did the winning Yellow Sticker Challenge, and then one of the joint second place choices which was Shopping Hauls, the Cook from One Cook Book joint second and the third place choice of spending only £3.50 for a weeks food were never completed.

But as you can see from this photo I did start to plan the '50p a Day Challenge'.

I only managed to declutter five items from the bag because I classed all the ripped out pages from the notebooks and bits and bobs of paper items as just one thing.  But I did get the same sense of satisfaction from knowing that I had whittled down the bag a bit and tidied things up that needed putting into the bureau that is my work space.  The bag now holds all my unused notebooks and some stationery items that will be used in the future ... and I know that I will not have to buy myself am A5 notebook for a long time.

I was reading through the already decluttered Asda mini magazine before I put it into the recycling, and I came across this page.  What a good deal!!

Seemingly if you save up £280 or more on the Asda Christmas Savings Card before 21st November they will then add an additional £15 to your card.  There's not many places you can get that sort of interest rate at the moment.  It's well worth thinking about if you have an Asda near you.

Sue xx


Thursday 21 January 2021

Another Seven Days of Decluttering


Eight - An assortment of magazines and supplements.
All into the recycling, with a clear conscience.

So here I am carrying on with the 31 Day Minimalist Decluttering Challenge for January that I started HERE last week.  Turning it into a bit of a game does seem to make it easier and really keeps me in the mindset to push on.  After the first seven days I had managed to get rid of twenty eight items, you'll see how much that number has gone up by when you get to the bottom of this post  😀

Nine - bits and bobs from the kitchen.

The lids don't stay on the little containers, the Xanthan Gum was bought for one recipe and never needed again and is now out of date, I have soooo many little jam jars now I might as well recycle these.  I just don't roast things that need bags and these have been in my drawer for far too long.  The coconut bowl ... well it leaks, very badly!!

Ten - Most of my jam making equipment.

Any batches made in future will be much smaller, and I just do not have the room to store such a lot of stuff in my new kitchen.  I sold this on Facebook Marketplace for £30.

Eleven - an assortment of glass and plastic containers and bottles.

These all went straight into the recycling bins, before I could change my mind.

Twelve - A random hotch potch of things from the kitchen cupboards.  

I just don't use any of them and I am determined that I will not be moving  with anything that will just sit in cupboards not being used

Thirteen - a random selection of things that I found on a quick ten minute sweep this morning ... as I had day 13 missing from my photos!!

Fourteen - Bits and Bobs from the kitchen in Wales.

So, with week two complete that was a grand total of  105  items that have gone from my life and that will not need moving with me to my new home ... and it really feels good.

Sue xx

Wednesday 20 January 2021

Mystery Solved


Remember this from last week and my puzzlement at the suddenly appearing hazard tape.  Well over the last couple of days all has been revealed.

Somebody obviously had a very good future weather forecast for this week and put precautions in motion nice and early.  Just look at it now from almost the same angle ... but with the addition of a moving Pug.

It's been raining non-stop since I got back and I'm sure Suky blames me.  Her face when I suggest a walk is a picture!!

It felt so wet and gloomy at 8am this morning, yes I went out early while the rain had eased a little bit, now it's back with a vengeance.

I wonder how much water trees can actually drink before they simply give up all hope?

It's not as bad as last time when the river burst it's banks, but if it carries on raining it will be getting there.

It got too wet to take any more photos after this one, so it was a case of heads down and hurry home.  A short and gloomy walk, that can only be followed by hot toast and coffee ... lots of lovely coffee.

Sue xx

Sunday 17 January 2021

A Trip Down Memory Lane - A Blog Post for You Mum


I was doing a blog post over on my other blog A Year of Modern Rationing and talking about 'dip butties' and reminiscing about my childhood home.,  When I finished and published the post I decided to Google my former home out of interest and found these photos.

It's absolutely fascinating.  These photos are from were from when it was on the market back in 2007 when it sold for £219,000.  My Nana bought it for around the £1000 mark in 1958, and while she had the upstairs with the smallest bedroom slightly converted to a kitchen, me, my younger brother and my parents lived downstairs, we all shared the upstairs bathroom.

It is now valued at over £323,000 ... WOW!!

The kitchen looks completely different to the room that we used as lounge/kitchen/playroom/television room, with a little pantry off it containing an old 1950's gas cooker, a slightly newer gas fridge and the Belfast sink, with the understairs are being our larder.  Tins of food on the shelves and bags containing vegetables on the floor.

This room was mine and my brothers bedroom, with Grahams bed being along the wall where the sofa is now and mine being out of shot, coming out from the alcove at the left-hand side of the marble fireplace.

What is now the dining room was my parents bedroom and is actually the front room of the house.

Upstairs and this was my Nana's living room, with the lovely bay widow looking out over the street.  And yes, that is my Nana's original fireplace  😀

This room overlooking the back garden was my Nana's bedroom and was decorated in shades of cream and baby pink with a boarded up fireplace ... 

...with a row of Goebel china monks on the mantlepiece.

Two rooms not shown on the estate agents details are the old fashioned bathroom with the black and white tiled colour scheme and icy cold lino floor, and the room that Nana used as her kitchen, the smallest of the bedrooms.  With her 1950's kitchen cabinet (similar to this one but painted cream) in the alcove beside the fireplace and a fitted 1950's sink unit with a little instant hot water boiler above ...

... and a Baby Belling cooker like this one but with two round  hotplates stood next to it.

The back garden is almost the same.  

The little walled area for tiny plants that my Dad built, that led to the coal bunkers has gone, as have the coal bunkers themselves.  But the grass is still in the same shape and the little brick built outhouses are still there.  The one in shot is where me and my Dad stored our bikes ... I went everywhere on my secondhand bike until I was 13... and the shed to the right of this one was my Dad's woodworking and hoarding space.

Wow, this has been a trip down memory lane.

My childhood stomping ground.  

Have you ever been tempted to Google your childhood home, or go back there ... I did drive past the house about ten years ago and had a quick peak ... or do any of you actually still live nearby or actually  there?

It's a good time to look back at our old lives while our current lives are mostly in a state limbo.

Sue xx

Friday 15 January 2021

So You Think That Blogging is Easy ...

So you think that blogging is easy do you?  Think that getting one or two simple photos to load onto a blog post is a doddle, well try doing it when you have a cat that has accidentally been locked in the shed all night by his Dad, who then went away to work and left him there.  All Ginger wanted this morning when I finally found him after hours of searching and calling were the loving hands of his Mum, so there was no way he was going to let me take photos when he wanted a fuss and a cuddle. 

Of course I relented in the end, and after much stroking a quick cuddle ... he's not a cat that likes cuddles that much just attention ... the final photos that appeared on todays Modern Rationing blog got taken.

But this is a record of some of what I went through to take them ...

'I'm here Mum ... can you see me?'

'So ... it's this book you want a photo of is it?'

'I'm a blurry fast pussy cat.'

'And I love your book.'

'Perhaps I'll dash this way next, she won't expect it.'

'I could model with the book, but if I move fast when she's least expecting it she'll never get a good shot ... haha!!' 

'Now I'll pretend that no-one loves me and I'm sulking, then everyone that reads Mum's blog will say "Aww, poor Ginger, locked in the shed by his Dad and then ignored by his Mum". '

We both won in the end he got a fuss ... and I got my photos  😊😸

Sue xx

Thursday 14 January 2021

Tape, Sunshine and Cutting Through the Weind

Oooh ... what's all this then?

  Someone has taped off all the grass at the riverside, Suky was proper miffed that I wouldn't allow her on there for a little run.  But although she could quite easily walk under the tape it would have been wrong of me to do so if I needed to pick anything up 😉

At last some blue sky, and although it was cold and very muddy underfoot just seeing some sunshine made the world of difference.

You've seen the riverside before so I thought I would show you what's further along our walk once we pop out into the carpark from the riverside footpath.  This new development on the site of what was a wonderful old building was stopped through the first lockdown so has been ongoing for a couple of years now.

But it's starting to take shape now and the new flats, shops and businesses should be good for our little town.

We cross the road after the new development and take a shortcut through Nickson's Weind.

It's a pretty little alleyway that leads through to more houses and if you carry on straight down across the road will bring you out at Booth's supermarket.

To the left just as you get into the Weind is another little path, Suky likes to 'make use' of the grassy bit in the middle most days 😄

I love this old wall and the plants and lichen growing on it, I examine it frequently while Suky sniffs much lower down ... I don't sniff I just look!!

Just in case you forget where you are this is the sign at the other end of the path.

We pass by more Weinds ...

... and blue plaques.

Thomas's Weind.

Then it's a left turn and along past the town Herb Garden, the one where the kindly gardener gave me some Rosemary cuttings just after I moved in.

It's looking very well looked after.

One of the many, many pubs our small town has, and the lovely old phone box on the left is now filled with flowering plants that spill from the empty window panes.

Then it's along the road until we reach another little cut through that brings us outright opposite home.  And little weary Puggy legs can rest while she snoozes and dreams of walks with Mum while I put the washing machine on and sit down at the computer with a coffee.

Sue xx