Monday 13 February 2017


Some time ago as the result of an error on their part Amazon gave me a pack of Sugru.  It's brilliant stuff!  It's mouldable glue but according to the pack it can be used to fix, bond, cushion, replace, create and seal almost anything.It has to be kept in the fridge and it doesn't last for ever before use, so I decided to have a go at a couple of things which had been bugging me.

First of all the kitchen dustpan.  It's a really useful bit of kit as I can use it as a door stop as well as what it was really intended for but the handle fell off the pan.  I put a small piece of dowelling inside and lined up the two parts together before creating a new join with Sugru.  It's wonderful!

Then crochet hooks.  Crochet hooks don't wear out but sadly the joints in my hands aren't as flexible as they were and these days I like a crochet hook with a grip.  I've now made one for just one of my "gripless" hooks, making a custom designed grip and it seems great.  If this works out I shall use up some more of the spare packs on other hooks.  It needs to air-cure for a day but then I'm hoping that once again my hook will be good to go.

Saturday 11 February 2017

Crazy pricing!

I had a great (and slightly crazy!) day out this week.  I'd always wanted to travel the East Coast Main Line north of York,  I think Michael Portillo's programmes have inspired me but I didn't want to get off the train: it was the countryside I wanted to see and besides, I rather like train travel.  My journey was (sort of) free but I decided to look at the pricing.

My nearest station to this line is Newark and usually I would drive to Newark and board there.  I wanted to travel first class because I need leg room and it is fun to eat at one's seat.  Meals are complimentary in first class on this line.  So I started to look at prices.

An open first class return ticket is £366 !  No way!!

So the first trick is to advance book.  The train I chose (which was the cheapest that day) was £45.50 each way.  

Next apply my Senior Citizen Railcard and the fare drops to £30.50 each way.  Suddenly the cost of my day out is looking much more reasonable at £61, less than 17% of the full fare.

But let's take it a step further.  Tesco vouchers can be swapped for Red Spotted Hanky vouchers.  £5 Tesco buys £10 Red Spotted Hanky.  My fare is now just £30.50!

What else can I trim?  As I said above I usually drive to Newark and pay £14 for a day's parking on top of the cost of the drive.  However, I have discovered that a connecting train from my local station is free if I have booked main line travel so I saved £14 plus the cost of the drive as someone drove me to the station in case I needed help boarding at our unmanned station

And it was a wonderful journey.  I had booked disabled assistance at Newark and Edinburgh so my transfers were easy.  I had a delicious breakfast, a tasty lunch and an unending supply of coffee, all included in my fare.

So my trip cost me just £30 in Tesco vouchers plus £2.50 for ticket postage and booking fee.  Not bad for a great day out.  

PS  Tesco vouchers can also be used to purchase a railcard.

Thursday 2 February 2017

Another win

I've been comping again and I've had another win! 

Charming fellow isn't he!  He's called a Double Poppin Dino.  Drop the balls on his back or spin the roller and he makes sounds and of course balls pop out through his mouth or his tail.  

Not quite the thing for a Rather Senior Lady but just the job for the present box or for sale on eBay.  

Wednesday 1 February 2017

A busy month ahead

You may remember that way back in August I wrote that the kitchen floor has to be replaced and it was not going to be a quick or easy job.  I reduced my freezer stocks, I organised help from various people, I started to sort things out.  So my freezer stocks reduced, my cupboards got sorted and I got my head around thoughts of disruption and I heard NOTHING.  Christmas came and the freezer got refilled, life happened and the cupboards became unsorted and my friends kept asking when the floor would be done.

Last week I checked up and it looks as though the maintenance file for my house has got well-and-truly misplaced so I got a visit from a rather bigger cheese who is now trying to sort it.  Which means I now need to sort things as well.  To be fair I need various kicks in the posterior to get my whole life sorted as I am quite amazingly disorganised and untidy so February is Get It Sorted month.  It is also a fun month so it will be busy!  My great friend and gardener and handyman Jack came on Monday and we started to sort the garage so that the kitchen stuff can be stored in there.  The photos were taken after two of us had done a whole day's sorting and we'd taken two car loads to the tip!!

I shall probably move out while the work is done so I'm hoping that when I move back in it will be to a more organised home.  (Just noticed pigs preparing for take off.)