Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Well, September is nearly upon us and I have a feeling that my blog world is returning to normal. Tat's back, Trac's back, Geena's back - yippee. Now, all we need is LeChat to come back....hear that Kitty?

Normally, the arrival of September makes me a feel a little bit sad for a while before I get my head around the arrival of autumn. There is that feeling that the garden is closing down, and we won't see fresh growth for months. However, this year it's a bit different. For a start I don't have a garden! But I have an allotment and as all veg growers (and flower growers too) know, there are things to be put in at this time of year. I was too late for leeks sadly this year, but have broccolli, sprouts and cabbage to look forward too. Also, the allotment trees are hanging with plums of all varieties, apples and walnuts too! (they aren't my trees but I can help myself!) Rather excitingly too I have squashes of every shape and hue ripening nicely, and a pumpkin which is obscene in its tumescence! My sunflowers due to the lack of sun are not flowering yet so I look forward to a later summer flowering. So, it's not all about things finishing. I've also planted some perennial flowers which are sprouting nicely - delphiniums, sweet williams and hollyhocks.

Also, September gives me hope that the housing market will pick up and we will find a house before Christmas. I've been having second thoughts about the BIG house with the coach house. While it is really nice, it's really quite a long way from oldest's secondary school and where she wants to be with all her friends. I'm not saying I'll say no though if they accept our offer!

I read in the paper at the weekend that East Anglia is the only area in England where the house prices are rising at a high rate! Typical eh! We move to East Anglia and everyone follows! It's the fastest growing town in Europe apparently. It also has the highest number of Eastern European immigrants in Britain - so no shortage of plumbers then!

I'm off to London later to see Lettuce for a few days. (with a small detour to Ikea on the way and another to Blue Water on the way back!).

I'm back Thursday and then I start work on Friday! I feel sad, nervous and weird all of a sudden...... nothing like a new term eh!

Thursday, August 24, 2006

A little light relief while we await the answer to our offer.....hmmm de hmmmm, twiddle twiddle.

I just HATE, that's H A T E the estate agent we have to deal with. They/he is so manipulative. A while back he gave us first look at a house he was SURE would be the one for us, after we rejected it, the price immediately came down by 15 thousand pounds! WTF. I think he priced it higher because he was SO SURE we would want it! Surely that's bad practice.

Also ages and ages ago we looked at a house on a certain road which we didn't want but I made friends with the owner and now we are friends (book club). A few months ago when the Quirky house came on and we didn't get it, the agent phoned my friend Ruth (because her house is on the same road as the Quirky house) and told her he had someone who was really looking for a house on the road and is ready to go...it was us! WTF! We didn't want it and she'd taken the house off the market months before anyway, but he phoned her to say he had a definite buyer, not knowing that we knew each other!

So, back to the offer we've made. The agent says they've put the house on below it's market value because they want a quick sale (they've already bought another house) but Andy and I believe that the house is too expensive for the road and it needs alot of work. I think they are testing the market. We made an offer for what we thought was value of the house to us and it was rejected. When I told the agent we wouldn't be increasing our offer (he knows we can go higher) he was dumbstruck! He'd obviously told the people to reject our offer because we will increase it! How I hate estate agents! But, we won't raise our offer. We will sit tight.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

I hoovered up all the flies in my kitchen.

Here's a house

Here's a house we love

Here's a house we've made an offer on.

This house is lovely but not in the catchment area for the secondary school we'd like our youngest to go to in three years time.

This house is in the catchment for a secondary school which isn't too bad, but isn't one of the better ones.

We are blinded to this fact and have decided to go ahead anyway, because as the house isn't in the right catchment it is now affordable for us. In the right catchment it would be half as much more expensive.

Decisions, decisions.

Here is the house: The garden is completely walled and large. It also has a coach house.


Monday, August 21, 2006


I think Spike Milligan said that! One of the goons anyway.

I have so many flies in my house at the moment. They particularly love the warmth of the laptop screen. This lap top doesn't have a mouse but a little 'nipple' in the middle. While manipulating this nipple earlier I mistook a fly for the cursor thingy! Doh!

We've had guests this weekend and as I had brought some tequila from France I went on a quest on Friday to find some triple sec to make margaritas. Triple sec in Ipswich? Not a chance! This is a triple sec desert. I nearly got depressed about it but in my quest to find it I entered a specialist independent wine merchants and had an extremely long and entertaining conversation with the male wine merchant! (which cheered me up)

Then, later that day as I was walking through Ipswich I noticed that the Corn Exchange now houses an art gallery and a permanent craft exhibition. I went in and emerged over an hour later, no longer at all depressed that triple sec is unavailable north of the M25! I had such an interesting chat with the guy who runs the Suffolk Craft Society who'd just moved into his new job from the Cotswolds. The two of us bemoaned the lack of a Waitrose, and I felt I'd met a kindred spirit!

So, two nice men in one day! I'm a lucky laydee!

I made do with Cointreau by the way. (which worked very well indeed)

Friday, August 18, 2006

I'm closing my blog.

I've decided to close this blog.

It's job is done, I feel. I started it because I had was moving/had just moved to a new
town/life and I wanted to record my feelings. As well as that it was the middle of winter and I knew noone in the town.

Now though, I have settled in this town, I know people who I can now call friends. So now I feel this blog is a bit of 'show and tell' which isn't really what I wanted it to be.

The recent 'blog slutting' I've been doing has made me realise (although I knew this of course) that there are so many creative people out there who do wonderful things with their time. I've decided that I need to MAKE myself do the creative things I claim to enjoy doing but never do these days because I procrastinate too much......ie. spend too much time on this laptop, either looking for new properties on the websites or catching up with blogs. The other thing I just don't do these days is read or keep up with current affairs like I used to and while I am a member of the Tate Gallery I can't remember the last time I looked at their quarterly magazine they send me. As well as this I used to go to the cinema once a week, now I don't even know what films are showing. So, I'm off to improve myself.....

I'm going to

a) keep fit by walking more, swimming once a week and finding a yoga class.
b) go to the cinema at least once a month
c) draw and paint

I'm going to keep my diet blog running because, quite frankly, by recording my eating habits I can keep them in check. In fact Anne Diamond was on the radio yesterday saying that she thinks fat people are suffering from a disease and it's not their fault - I know Anne Diamond struggles with her weight, but I just don't believe her. I've been overweight all my adult life but I've managed to lose weight whenever I've put my mind to it, so I'm afraid Anne Diamond, you are wrong. Dust anyone?

So, it's goodbye.

I'm not going to delete this blog until I can work out how to copy it all onto disk, because I'd like to keep it as a record of this time in my life.

Also, if and when, I ever get a home of my own I will post it on this blog, and, you never know, I might come back.

So, in fine rambling form, I'm off.

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Back to life, back to reality

It was strange coming back from my holiday this year.

Every year we go to Brittany - have done for the last eight or nine years. Some people would say we were boring and/or predictable, but it's a tradition the children love and have no desire to change, neither do we. Brittany is so beautiful. The weather is never TOO hot, and it's great cycling country which we do a lot of. This year we went back to the same area, usually we vary the area we go to (at least). It was because we were approached last year by a French couple who invited us to hire their house. As their house was the loveliest house I have EVER been in we said yes, and that's how we ended up coming to the same area. My parents came (as they do every year, and so did my my sister (the one who lives in Bangladesh), her husband (for one week only) and their three children. It was lovely to have us all together for three weeks. Time spent together these days is so rare, especially as Clare lives in Dhakka.
We put the kids in the 'outhouse'! (see left). A luxuriously appointed annexe! They had a great time, and we didn't have to look at their mess.
This was the view from mine and Andy's bedroom - this was our own personal deck, only accessible from our bedroom. I tell you it was wonderful. The one minor drawback, if one has to be mentioned is that the owners were very very worried about us wrecking their beautiful house and had stressed that should we drop the merest drop of liquid on their oiled oak flooring it would be ruined! Imagine our nervousness every time a child had a drink in their hands! But the kids soon got the hang of the rules (NO drinks or food in the living area) and we all relaxed. It was a lovely, lovely holiday.

But as I said at the start, it was odd coming back to Ipswich. Driving round the M25 on Saturday night (in the rain and cold) it felt odd to be driving past the exit for the A2 which would have in previous years taken us 'home'. When I woke up on Sunday morning in our rented house here in Ipswich it felt distinctly odd, 'what am I doing HERE?' I thought to myself, 'this isn't my town, I'm going back'. But that feeling soon wore off.

But it's a funny feeling, that post-holiday feeling. There is no desire to see ANYONE I know or interact in outside society for a few days. (or is that just me?). Yesterday evening I took myself to club tennis, and it felt odd (almost like going back to work). It was an effort to go, I almost felt like giving up the tennis, but I didn't and I played for two hours and people were pleased to see me and I had a great time (as always). So, now I feel more 'normal' and it's as if Brittany is a distant dream.


So, it's back to normal life. Except I now have a job (gulp) and have to organise all the tax details, CRB stuff blah blah. I also have to continue looking for a house (sigh).


Last night I did a bit of blog slutting (is that the word?) and looked at this lady's lovely stuff. What inspiring work - I also looked at her links - I love the idea of the painting a day - what a great way to discipline yourself, practise painting and improve one's skills. I'm thinking that I might set myself a similar task of 'a drawing or painting a day!' - watch this space!


No more rambling for now! Bye

Monday, August 14, 2006

Back from my holiday!