Friday, November 29

Stairway to Heaven DIY style.

Prior to our decorating project, the hall looked like this.

Now it looks like this.

We went with a grey carpet.

The landing before.....


and after.

A blue carpet in the main bedroom.

We are so pleased with the white glossed woodwork - even the re-positioning of the door knobs has given the whole place a lift.

Colours used - Farrow & Ball Strong White for landing and hallway walls. Pavillion Grey for wall above radiator in hall. This can't be seen really in photograph 2 but the different shade can be just made out. We are waiting for the radiator to be returned from the sand blasting process and then we will finish it off with a mirror I spotted!

Watch this space!

Sunday, November 24

T is for Tea Day

The  tea day I organised was a great success. Thanks to the lovely friends I have we produced some fantastic cakes and it looks as though we will raise getting on for £200 for Cancer Research. The cakes that were not sold are now in our freezer and we'll do it all again in December. Friends also made jams and donated raffle prizes.


Friday, November 22

A quiz

I am organising a coffee morning tomorrow to raise funds for Cancer Research and have a quiz I have devised with the help of good old google.
Have a go - try without the help of Google...answers later

1.  When was the term ‘cupcake’ originally used for cakes made from ingredients measured by the cupful.

1.   late 17th Century

2.   late 18th Century

3.   late 19th century


2. How many cardboard coffee cups are thrown away each year in the US.

1. Around 58 billion

2. Around 48 million

3. Around 68 million


3. The legend of King Alfred burning a villager’s cakes when in disguise dates from the

1. 11th Century

2. 12th century.

 3. 13th Century.


4. In 2001, a Zambian was granted a divorce after he found what in a cup of tea his wife made him.

1. False teeth

2. A frog 3.

A fly.


5. Where did the ‘cakewalk’ dance begin as a competition in graceful walking, with cake awarded as a prize.

1. Malaysia

2. USA

3. Japan


6. Which famous composer liked every cup of coffee to be made from exactly 60 coffee beans.

1. Mozart

2. Dvorak

3. Beethoven


7.When was the earliest known reference to a ‘birthday cake’

1. 1785

2. 1805

3. 1875


8. The A-to-D cup-sizing system for brassieres was introduced by the Warner Corset Company in:-

1. 1945

2. 1935.



9. The world record for eating cupcakes stands at how many in six minutes.

1. 78

2. 82

3. 112


10. What is the name of the trophy awarded each year to the winner of the Miss Crustacean beauty pageant for crabs in New Jersey.

1. Shark’s fin

2. Cucumber Rind

3. Lobster claw

Sunday, November 17

The exploits of Bing : S is for Spice!

It would appear that Bing, like his mummy enjoys time in the kitchen, exploring new ideas and ideas.
Today he has been experimenting with mixing herbs and spices....sadly on the kitchen floor!

All the efforts of dragging the spice bottles out of the box and onto the floor tired him out....Bless!

For more ABC fun follow the link in my sidebar.

Wednesday, November 13

More beach buddies.

It's great having a lovely beach only 5 minutes away - so whilst the decorating takes shape I took Bing and Freida to the beach. Shame to waste the lovely opportunity.

Tuesday, November 12

R is for Revamp

Update - Bedroom 1 emulsioned and glossed.
All 4 doors have had furniture and knobs replaced - they look fabulous.
Once they have had another coat of white gloss they will look the business - yes white for all woodwork is a definite brain wave - yet it's not rocket science is it?
We have been in this house for 22 years - the internal doors have always been magnolia - I am feeling
Hall, landing and stairs to go!

Watch this space.

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Sunday, November 10

Calm before the Storm

This morning there was a definite nip in the air. The blueness of the sky indicates just how cold it was. (These pictures were taken on my phone - so no adjustments - I don't know how to on my phone.)

Freida and Bing enjoyed a play together. I don't think Freida has ever been shown how to play and she does bark at Bing but she enjoys her visits and is always excited when we are getting ready.
This made me laugh as it looks like some religious scene from an epic biblical film. Its one of our beach friends - Taz the whippet. A big fan of both Bing and Freida.
Freida has always been quite grey and we have no idea how old she is, we suspect about 12.
After a bracing start to the day it was home to the DIY preparation.
The hall, stair and landing carpet was removed and taken to the tip.
All woodwork prepared and washed............
ready for tomorrow morning.....
when it all happens!
Grey? I hope we like it!

Thursday, November 7

Sweet and Sour...........the very best!

I won this book in the Slimming World Raffle - this has got to be the best Sweet and Sour I have ever tasted and so healthy.

low calorie cooking spray
800g skinless and boneless chicken breasts, sliced thinly
1 garlic clove, peeled and crushed
4 spring onions,thinly sliced, plus extra togarnish
1 green pepper and 1 red pepper,deseeded and cut into chunks
200g fresh pineapple,cut into bite-sized pieces

1 tbsp white wine vinegar
6 tbsp light soy sauce
4 tbsp tomato purée
1 tbsp rice vinegar
6 tbsp unsweetened orange juice
100ml chicken stock
1-2 tsp sweetener
1 level tbsp cornflour

Mix all the ingredients for the sauce in a bowl until the cornflour is thoroughly blended. Set aside. Spray a wok or deep frying pan with low calorie cooking spray and place over a high heat.
When it is very hot, add the chicken and stir-fry for 6-7 minutes until the chicken is cooked through. Add the garlic, spring onions and peppers and stir-fry for 2 minutes.
Pour the sauce into the pan and stir continuously for 1 minute until it thickens.
The chicken and vegetables should be well coated with the sauce.
Remove the pan from the heat, stir in the pineapple, season with salt and garnish with spring onions. Serve with lots of noodles or rice.

Tuesday, November 5

Q is for Quandry.

Okay - so the new carpet and walls are going to be what next? Well the window on the landing needs curtains - so I came across a bargain on ebay. Jane Churchill remnant - sufficient for just what we need.


Love the colours.
Hall/landing stairs sorted then....what about our bedroom?
Blank canvas is fine but no ideas....then whilst I was on the computer a pair of curtains popped up on ebay with minutes to go to the end of the auction.
With 1 minute to go I put my cheeky bid in within the last 30 seconds and won!

They have been dispatched and will be arriving any day!

Watch this space!
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Friday, November 1

50 Shades of Grey!

No no no - not that! Wall colours!

We are about to begin preparations for a spot of decorating - hall, stairs and landing and main bedroom.

I managed to drag Jon into a carpet shop last week to start and get some ideas of colour.
The current hall, stairs and landing carpet is a shade of beige and the walls are citrus.

We want a change, the carpet is unpractical and has seen better days. (Understatement of the year!)
We both decided on a grey - a speckled type.

All woodwork/doors brilliant white and all door furniture to be changed - from brass to chrome.

Looking back I found this account of the last time we decorated - it was 2008, so 5 years for the carpet, with the traffic we have in the hall with our animals is good going!

Meanwhile, back in the house, I had my own DIY project on the go.
Over a period of a few months, working with my sister in law Maureen we transformed a dingy hallway, stairs and landing from this....

through this....

This was the view of our hall.

and now....

The whole appearance has changed and thanks to Maureen we have transformed the old dark hall into alight fresh welcoming place.

Since the photographs (my magnolia period) we did re-paint the walls a citrus but we never really gelled!

Watch this space!