Thursday, 25 July 2013

The Houseproud Sloven: Bathroom cleaning.

I'm ashamed to say that yesterday I cleaned the bathroom for the first time in weeks, even by my standards that is deplorable! I've had plenty of excuses, the most frequent being "It's too hot!" and "I'll do it in the summer holidays!" So much for an end to procrastination, lol!!
Well the holidays are here and the sun has stopped shining (although it is still very warm) so I have finally set too. Of course the rest of the house has been equally abandoned  - well there was crocheting to finish - but you've got to start somewhere! 
Now I would like my bathroom to look like this

but actually it looks like this!

Anyhoo, my daughter (who is most responsible) and eldest son will be away to uni in September so I will leave the decluttering side of things in here until then.
So, after bunging the towels and bathmats in the washing machine (and remembering to switch it on, lol), giving the room a thorough clean and depositing the grubby shower curtain in a bath of bleach and water, I headed downstairs for a well earned glass of juice (I know, what a party animal!)
I'd just started writing this post when my eldest son, Sam, wandered down.
 "How long does that curtain need to soak? Me mates just rung and wants me to meet him in 5 minutes and I need a shower."
This is what I'm up against!!
Sooooo...juice half drunk, post only started, I headed once more unto the fray to give the curtain a bit of a scrub before rehanging AND THE DARN THING RIPPED ALONG THE BOTTOM SEAM!!! I wish I'd just bought a new one in the first place - bloomin' frugality!!
Sam was very apologetic -  not that it was his fault -  and, as I told him him, he had at least got me away from posting about cleaning and back to actually doing it.
'And on that bombshell' I did all the hoovering too!! 

P.S. Some of you may be wondering where my promised cleaning lists are. Weeeellll I
have decided to leave that to the many wonderful blogs that do it so well. I ain't ever gonna be no cleanin' guru!! All I'd like to do is share my attempts at creating the home I think my family deserve - if we share a few laughs along the way then all the better :-D 

Friday, 19 July 2013

Two 'jobs done'.

Yay! I've finally finished Bethany's crochet blanket!
Well it's more of a throw in size than a blanket a. because I was getting fed up and b. because (shock, horror) I had just about used up my stash of DK!!
Anyhoo, it is big enough to wrap around her on winter nights and will certainly brighten
her room at uni. (And, yes, I've already bought some new wool, lol!)

The other thing that I've just finished (yesterday) is my job as a part time Teaching Assistant. I have worked in the same First School for 8 years now - the longest I've stayed in any job. Unfortunately funds are short and, as the child I support is moving to Middle School, they are unable to keep me on  :-(
Thankfully, though I have a new job for September as a Childcare Practitioner (there are so many different titles these days!) at a Day Nursery, working full time!!
Now that my children are all but grown I was looking for more hours anyway, so things have worked out for the best. I will miss the staff and children at my old school but as it's local I'm sure to see many of them around :-)
The Year 4's, who are also leaving, made me a card with thank you messages and a God's eye, one of the many crafts we made together.

The staff treated me to a meal out, some gorgeous flowers

a beautiful scarf - I just adore those hedgehogs

and also a voucher for Hobbycraft!! Best of all I've got the whole of the Summer holidays to decide what to spend it on :-D
Much love and thanks to all my colleagues - have a fab Summer xxx

Friday, 12 July 2013

Our new car - everybody needs good neighbours!

As you may know, a couple of Saturdays ago my little Renault Clio threw up her bonnet in despair and declared she'd had enough! 
When I contacted the insurers I was told that the car would most likely be written off and my no claims bonus would go down from 9 years to 2 years! Now given that I didn't pay much for it in the first place I wasn't expecting a huge payout from the insurers anyhoo. There were quite a number of other things that needed fixing before I started my new job. Was it going to be worth losing so many years NCB and having my future insurance premiums go up? I didn't think so!
As luck would have it a neighbour, who deals in scrap, offered to take it off our hands. We were happy enough just to have it towed away for us and with a bit of cash towards the next car, it was a deal.
Enter another (car restoring) neighbour, stage right!
My husband and our neighbour are both big BMW fans. We have owned two in the past, one second hand and one new. The new one was my husbands pride and joy, it was a 3 series tourer and took us on many a family camping holiday to Mull in total comfort. I must admit we all loved it!! Sadly, due to redundancy and subsequent financial constraints we had to sell it (and his motorbike - I wasn't so sad about that, lol) and were left with my then car, an old Seat :-(
Imagine Malcolm's joy when our neighbour told him he had a beemer for sale :-D

Only £200 more than I'd paid for the Clio, a 5 series saloon! We had be discussing the need for a bigger, more reliable car anyway, the Clio had ONLY JUST made it to Leeds to get our son to uni and our daughter's Punto had ONLY JUST managed to bring him home again!  With both of them going to uni in September we were really not looking forward to the journeys. I have long believed in fate and this keeps me believing, and our long run of bad luck seems to be coming to and end.
As you can see husband and youngest son (car mad since the day he was born, BMW was 'bee-em-diddle-oh' when he was tiny) are in their element!
Oh, and it's an automatic which has been fun getting used to. My left hand and foot don't know quite what to do with themselves!


P.S Thanks for helping out (yet again!) Mum, we'll pay you back I promise :-D xxx

Wednesday, 3 July 2013

Oh no! One step forward, three back!

On Friday my beloved husband got his first full months pay check in three long years! We celebrated with an Indian takeaway and had a lovely night.
On Saturday I crashed my car!!
Well I didn't actually crash into anything, it kind of crashed itself. Maybe my poor Clio was fed up with all the negative comments it gets (from my family, not me - I love my little car!) Maybe it was fed up with being compared to my husbands previous BMW or my daughters Punto. We shall never know - it left no note - just decided that it had had enough!!
I was giving Bethany a lift to her friends house on Saturday evening as they were going out for a meal for her friends birthday. We were quite happily driving along and chatting when there was an almighty BANG and I suddenly couldn't see! The car bonnet had flown up and cracked the windscreen. Luckily no other cars were involved, the road - often busy and fast moving - was quiet, and I managed to stop at the side of the road safely.

The photos aren't great I'm afraid, but you get the gist.

The worst thing was that we couldn't get the bonnet back down as it had been forced past it's hinges, so we had no choice but to call the AA.

 Malcolm got my Mum to drive him to the scene, drop him off to wait with me and take Bethany home. She couldn't figure out why so many people were tooting their horns at us until I pointed out that she was wearing a skin tight, black lace dress (Bethany, not my Mum!!)
So Bethany and her friend didn't get their meal out and Malcolm and I didn't get the fish and chips I was supposed to be fetching on the way home!
Worst of all it looks like my poor car is a write off. If I claim on my insurance my no claims bonus will be reduced from 9 years to 2, putting any further insurance premiums way up :-(
One step forward, eh?

Our family, thank goodness, are adept at finding a funny side. On this occasion it was me set to relay the AA's number from Malcolm, over the phone, to Bethany; Bethany poised with a black eyeliner to write said number on her hand; then Malcolm reading out 
Maybe you had to be there but, if your an Only Fools and Horses fan, it was a real Trigger moment!!
Oh well, RIP little Clio, you were loved :-)