6. Saturday · Awards · So it's Saturday

Liebster Award 2016

First let me apologise the blog will be up later today got busy with sports relief stuff and though it is filmed I have not edited it yet, I shall do so when I get home from work xxxx

Liebster Award

I was nominated for the Liebster Award by Ellie over at Quotidiandose feel free to pop over and check out not only her answers but also her blog in general as it is well worth a visit.

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This is how it works:

  • Thank my nominator  – Ellie you are awesome!
  • Share the award on my blog !
  • Answer the 10 questions asked of me
  • Ask 10 questions of 10 new nominees
  • Notify them – This is the bit that annoys me lol hopefully pingback will work

So here we go…

  1. Why did you decide to blog?  I decided when I turned forty to stop procrastinating and start writing properly, I had always done little bits here and there but never applied myself so writing a blog was something that was suggested to me at the same time. It was a great way for me to build my confidence and slowly start sharing my thoughts and words and also turned out to be a brilliant way to make a few friends.
  2. Do you have themes that you blog about? (Such as  food, writing, sports, psychology, etc.) The main topic on my blog is writing but I do tend to veer off frequently, it has become a mix of sharing both my writing and my life, so hopefully it lets people get to know me better as a person and get to know how my mind works, I even include a monthly review of a beauty box I buy and I know a few people who are not into make up and beauty still enjoy it because the love the fact I am so honest about me feelings on the things I receive in it.
  3. What is the typical length of one of your blog posts? (word count) Well this one will be longer than a lot of them but that is because half the words are pre written for me lol I try to keep my blog posts to between 500-750 words, I know as a reader if I have a lot of blogs built up in my inbox I will read the ones I know will be shorter first and I know a lot of my readers have similar time constraints meaning they cannot always read all the blogs they would like to. I do not take it personally if someone stops visiting my blog or only pops by occasionally, we all have such incredibly busy lives with our own blogs and writing and reading is always the first thing to suffer.
  4. Are you part of a bloggers network? If so, how has it been beneficial? Not as such, but I do take part in the A – Z challenge each year through April which I find is a great way to find new blogs and get to know new people I tend to pick a couple of new blogs each year and follow all their posts and have always ended up staying on following them afterwards, it is not too late to sign up for this year if you are interested http://www.a-to-zchallenge.com/p/a-z-challenge-sign-up-list-2016.html
  5. How many times a month do you post  on your blog? I try to post daily, but that does not mean I always succeed or that I actually write on my blog daily. For example I post book reviews on a Monday, usually what I try to do is write the review as soon as I finish the book and queue them although at the minute I am up to date I need to start reading quicker.
  6. Who were the last three followers to your blog? My latest three followers have been Gryffindor Queen over at https://thatweirdbrowngirl.wordpress.com, https://swo8.wordpress.com/ and Mona at https://tishowthelightgetsin.wordpress.com/
  7. If you could meet three historical people from any point in time, who would they be? First up Marilyn Monroe, I want to know what happened that evening was it an accident or was she murdered, I do not believe it was deliberate suicide, Boudica, I am fascinated by the idea of the warrior queen, those who have had sneak peaks of my novel know this so I would love to meet the original but my third choice would also be a queen, Cleopatra, I would love to know how she held the greatest empire to have ever existed in the palm of her hand before losing everything.
  8. Where do you get the inspirations for your posts? Anywhere and everywhere, I think the thing is I think of you all as friends so it makes sense to me to share the same sort of things with you as I would share with friends, books I have read, programmes I have watched, stuff I enjoy and occasionally places I have been.
  9. What is your goal for your blog for 2016? For the next 5 years? This year I want to be more consistent with my posts and write more about more writing, over the next five years I want to start earning a living from writing and be able to quit the day job so I will have to be more focused and not allow myself to get distracted as easily.
  10. What rewards do you have in mind for reaching your goals? Quitting the day job will be the ultimate reward, giving myself the ability to make a living doing something I love and hopefully travelling more as part of that.

And now for my ten nominees…

  1. Bridget Straub
  2. Gemma
  3. Lucy
  4. Heidi
  5. CB Wentworth
  6. Linda
  7. Sandra
  8. Hornygeekgirl
  9. Stephanie
  10. Valentine

You can answer these questions as frivolously or seriously as you each desire I cannot wait to read your responses though

  1. Why did you decide to blog?
  2. Do you have themes that you blog about? (Such as  food, writing, sports, psychology, etc.)
  3. What is the typical length of one of your blog posts? (word count)
  4. Are you part of a bloggers network? If so, how has it been beneficial?
  5. How many times a month do you post  on your blog?
  6. If a fictional character were to write a blog who would you want to write one and why?
  7. Where do you get the inspirations for your posts?
  8. What is your goal for your blog for 2016? For the next 5 years? 
  9. What rewards do you have in mind for reaching your goals?
  10. What piece of advice would you give someone setting up a blog today?
Me And Mine · So it's Saturday

26 Things About Me

Twenty-six things about me…

I saw this on Archon’s Den and decided to appropriate it especially as you read this I shall be doing the day job then hosting a book launch, if you want to read his answers you can do so here

A- Age: I believe technically you are not supposed to ask a lady her age, but as I rarely get confused for one I shall admit to my 44 years on the planet.

B- Biggest fears: Needles and man made heights, needles I have overcome to a point but man made heights still make me hyperventilate, I can happily stand at the top of a cliff and look out over but ask me to get onto a step ladder and I feel sick

C- Current time: 8.01pm. it is also a Tuesday and so basically when you read this you will be time travelling

D- Drink you last had: Diet coke, I wish it was something more exciting but there you go

E- Every day starts with: A curse and a hit of the snooze button except Sundays that start with the monster usually waking me to ask if he can go downstairs and watch TV

F- Favourite song: So many, I don’t really have one favourite I tend to have favourite songs for different moods at the minute the three most played on my phone are Kylie Minogue Into The Blue, Evanescence Back To Life and Christina Perri A Thousand Years.

G- Ghosts, are they real?: Of course, I have even interacted with a couple.

H- Hometown: If you count home town as the place you live then it is Huddersfield, West Yorkshire but if you count it as the place you were born and your parents live then it is Kippax, Leeds just a few miles down the road.

I- In love with: No one at the minute, unless you count my kids, or Mr Darcy, who I have been in love with since I was about thirteen, I do have a bit of a thing for Sherlock at the minute but am pretty sure that is just lust.

J- Jealous of: At first I thought no one then I sat and thought and the list began, Steven Moffat because he gets to write Doctor Who and Sherlock, Kylie Minogue because of how fabulous she looks, all authors who earn enough from their writing to be able to do it full time as a job, people who can eat what they like and not put on weight… maybe we need to define the type of jealousy lol

K- Killed someone?: Well that would be telling, I mean I could hardly confess here without incriminating myself could I, I will say I have killed lots of people in my head and planned quite a few deaths, my perfect murder weapon is a frozen leg of lamb, I would tell you more but it may be featured in a book at some point.

L- Last time you cried: I cry at every thing these days, animal abuse stories, animal rescue stories, but last time I really broke down and blubbed was when my dog died last September

M- Middle name: Suzanne, I know you were all hoping for something more exciting but there you are don’t blame me I didn’t pick it

N- Number of siblings: 4, three sisters and a brother, I am the oldest and there are 15 years between me and my youngest sister which is the same gap as between my daughter and the monster.

O- One wish: Tempted to do the Miss World answer and go for world peace but not sure if we got it that it would last so instead a cure for cancer or dementia, see I am being fair to the wish fairy there and giving them options.

P- Person you last called: My daughter, she was at my house and I called to tell her to put the quiche in the oven as I was on my way home.

Q- Question you’re always asked: are those your real eyes? Now to be fair they are not actually asking if my eyeballs are real rather I do get a lot of questions about the colour of my eyes and whether I am wearing contact lens, the answer is yes they are and if I am honest not sure I could stand wearing contacts even though I have seen some really cool ones I would love to try especially for Halloween.

R- Reason to smile: lots but if you see me smiling and there is not an obvious one I probably just thought up a really cool way to kill someone!

S- Song last sung: if you mean sung as in someone heard me then happy birthday to the monster last May, if you mean in my own house with the stereo turned up so loud that even the dog does not have my listening inflicted on him, Kylie Into the Blue and I am not just saying it but my singing is actually that bad

T- Time you woke up: 7am when the first alarm went off and I cursed and hit snooze

U- Underwear colour: Black, nearly always black

V- Vacation destination: Not really having one this year but next year USA here I come, well assuming they let me in the country

W- Worst habit: doubting myself, you have no idea how many posts, stories and comments I write and then delete without hitting publish just because I am scared I will let people down that have believed in my abilities.

X- X-Rays you’ve had: think they have all been on my back, plus lots of MRI scans, to the point where the staff actually knew me when I walked in, not sure if that was because I had made a good impression or was notorious

Y- Your favourite food: Chocolate wish I could say something really healthy like quinoa or kale but I believe in being honest

Z- Zoos visited!: Blackpool and Isle of Wight zoo which is technically a tiger sanctuary and you should certainly visit if you are ever on the island, you can find out more about it here, for several years we actually sponsored one of the tigers named Zena

This is not the sort of one where you nominate someone but if you decide to have a go at answering the questions be sure to link back here.

Questioning the World

My Bowie Tribute

The last week everyone’s time lines on Facebook have been full of grief and shock at the passing of the icon David Bowie, mine included, I thought about posting yesterday but decided I wanted to reflect a little more about what I was going to write, I am putting this up today and will post the vlog over the weekend as I have a lot on my mind at the minute.

You see I realised that when someone like Bowie passes away and proves they are as mortal as the rest of us they take a little bit of us with them. When a star dies young, in an accident or from a drugs overdose, we sagely nod our heads and mourn a young life lost, but the loss of someone of Bowie’s stature is different. For most of us it is true we did not know him personally, in fact he was an intensely private person, he shared his music and creative persona’s but very little of the behind closed doors life so many share so openly these days. The fact is that when an idol dies that it was not a person who died for many of us it was part of ourselves, part of someone who made us what we are.  I heard Bowie’s music long before I have a visual image of him, there was no MTV back then and you listened to music on the radio and maybe bought Smash Hits magazine, but lets face it if I bought the magazine I was far too busy drooling over JT to look at Bowie that was until he stepped out onto my screen in those trousers and I fell in love with the Goblin King! I thought Sarah was an idiot for demanding her little brothers return and not surrendering her heart to the all singing all dancing deity, even now as an adult I still feel the same way even though I know I should question falling for a kidnapper who wants to seduce young girls, there was one scene in particular that has always stayed with me and one day I want to live this, and though I am going to a masquerade ball in a few weeks I know it will not be as magical as this one.

Even if my heart is forever trapped with an image of Bowie from the 80’s he continued to push boundaries and his final album could be argued pushes the boundaries of life and death itself. Imagine filming a video about being on your death bed as you battle a disease that is killing you? When someone you think of as immortal has the audacity to prove to be only a mere mortal and die on you it makes you question everything in ways that losing even your own family members fails to, we expect our grandparents and parents to go before us but those we adore we expect to live forever, and in one way they do because they leave a legacy and continue every time we introduce a new generation to their work, think of generations who will only ever know Judy Garland as Dorothy because that is the image we share with them, Marilyn Monroe with her dress forever blowing up over that grate despite being dead before many of us were born.

Just before I finish I need to address the other celebrity death that happened a couple of days later and was just as upsetting, that of Alan Rickman.  Both these celebs were taken by the evil that is cancer and the fact their illnesses seemed to have been kept under wraps made the deaths all the more shocking, in some ways both created characters that will live on long beyond the few years they spent on the planet so I just wanted to share a couple that come to my mind at the mention of Alan, the first less obvious than the second will be.

 

Me And Mine

‘Tis The Season

For this month my schedule is pretty much going out of the window but I thought today I would post a couple of pictures summing up the festive season so far here in my home…

!st of December the tree goes up, second of December it came back down again on my head while I was trying to plug window lights in behind it, don't worry though no baubles were broken
!st of December the tree goes up, second of December it came back down again on my head while I was trying to plug window lights in behind it, don’t worry though no baubles were broken
Also first of the month out come the Christmas jumpers, I have two both Who themed
Also first of the month out come the Christmas jumpers, I have two both Who themed
The weather out side is frightful... or something like that I forget how the song goes but best place to be is curled up by the fire, just wish it was a proper coal fire
The weather out side is frightful… or something like that I forget how the song goes but best place to be is curled up by the fire, just wish it was a proper coal fire
I am loving these 'Figgy Pudding' candles from Sainsburys I don't like the pudding itself but the smell from these is glorious
I am loving these ‘Figgy Pudding’ candles from Sainsburys I don’t like the pudding itself but the smell from these is glorious
For those on my FB and Instagram you will have seen my wonky candle issue, but no worries the situation has been resolved, also notice the wonderful card there from a certain Lord David Prosser which I was thrilled to receive
For those on my FB and Instagram you will have seen my wonky candle issue, but no worries the situation has been resolved, also notice the wonderful card there from a certain Lord David Prosser which I was thrilled to receive
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Final picture for this week is a monster turkey! Due to safeguarding no pictures from during the play just this one and a mummy/monster selfie taken after

 

Hope you are all having a wonderful run up to the festive period, normal service will resume in after Christmas but until then I am going to go with the random posting  😀

Questioning the World · Tuesday Reflections

Moving Forward.

Okay so it is the time of year where everyone gets annoyingly lovey-dovey, it is also almost a year since I joined the ranks of singledom index2though hopefully with far more grace than Ms Jones.

While I am certainly not in a rush to get back out there in the dating world I have recently started considering what I am looking for in a future partner and I have realised that I am looking for a person who certainly does not exist. In fact I think of the spell made in Practical Magic to find the true love with a person who could never exist to stop Sandra Bullock’s character from ever falling in love.

So let’s examine my impossible man…

imagesLets start with looks, and yes as I say I fully accept not only am a shallow but I am also aiming way above my own level, and yes I know I am not quite hideous but I am no supermodel either so Brad Pitt is aiming high, but I am even fussier than that as I like the young pre-Angelina Brad, you know long hair Legends Of the Fall Brad, I would also accept Thelma and Louise Brad or Interview With a Vampire Brad but not Fight Club Brad.

I like my guys tall so over six foot is a must, and as well are in fantasy land here he of course will have the perfect body, not for me that is something like this,Awesome-Body-Of-Wade-Barrett think rugby player, wrestler, preferably with the tattoos. Actually any type of sportsman with muscles will do, as long as they stop before the veins pop out, that makes me feel a little queasy.

Right so far seems fairly simple, I need to find a sporty model who doesn’t mind a girl with plenty of curves, except this is where is gets really complicated, you see what I want mentally from a partner is not something that is as easy to match up. You see in many ways the things I am looking for in terms of personality and compatibility are far harder to find.

I need a guy who gets quotes like this without me having to explain it…

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I want someone who understands this world without me needing to tell them about it…

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I want I guys that will love me as much as this man loved his Elizabeth…

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I want someone who has the brains and mental complexities of a genius…

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And on top of all this he has to understand my kids will always come first, that he will find me sat at the computer at silly o’clock because I can’t sleep and so I am writing or chatting to friends on the other side of the world.  They need to understand when I sit staring off into space that sometimes it is better not to ask what I am thinking as the answer may be disturbing and involve a gruesome death.

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Sometimes I think the only way I would ever find my perfect man is if I wrote him as a character, but then he would still not be perfect, after all perfection gets boring very quickly.

As I said at the start I am not seriously in a place right now to start a new relationship and maybe my wish list is indicative of that but should you have the phone number of a wrestling, geeky, sci-fi nerd then feel free to send it my way lol but until then I think the only men in life will be a monster and a timelord from Gallifrey and you know what I am okay with that.

So it's Saturday

Another Award Catch Up

Another award from SJ over at Delirious Anecdotes, you can check out her dreams here and I sincerely hope they all come true for her

Rules

  1. Thank (and follow) the blog that nominated you for the award.
  2. Tell us of 7 dreams of yours.
  3. Nominate bloggers.

Pretty Logo Award Thing

img_6545My Answers

I decided that aspirations and wishes are more appropriate than my actual dreams as they tend to be a little naughty at times and involve several famous actors and sportsmen though not all at the same time, well most of the time anyway but onwards…

  1. I wish the cure for cancer could be found and it work for all strains. I received the sad news someone I went to school with passed away at the weekend, another family now torn apart by this horrible disease.  While this was not someone I had kept in touch with she was none the less a lovely girl with the brightest smile and an infectious laugh, she leaves behind a teenage son who will miss out on so many special times because of a disease that does not care who it destroys.  There are conspiracies out there of course suggesting the cure is known and pharmaceutical companies are sitting on it for profit I hope if it is ever discovered that is the truth the people making that decision are charged for the thousands of deaths that cancer causes each year.
  2. I wish for a world where there is no bullying, that parents teach their children the old adage of if you have nothing nice to say say nothing at all.  When I was at school you did not have to be friends with everyone but the people you weren’t friends with you just didn’t bother with you did not have to lead hate campaigns against them, you had your own life to get on with.
  3. I wish for a world where parents take responsibility for their children, my kids are not perfect, they have their faults, acknowledging this does not mean I love them any less in fact the fact I can see their faults probably means I love them more because I see the issues, address them and help my children become better people, too many people think they are their children’s friends when the greatest gift you are ever given is the chance to be a parent.
  4. On a more personal level I want to make a living from my writing, I might never be rich and famous but to be able to write full time, attend conventions and meet people who enjoy reading the books I write.
  5. Tied in with the last would be to receive positive reviews for each book I release, I know you cannot have all reviews be good, well not unless you pay lol but it would be nice to see the four and five star reviews mount up.
  6. I would like to meet someone and have a meaningful relationship, right now I still don’t see it happening and am certainly not looking but it would be nice to think in a couple of years my Mr Darcy might be out there and find me.
  7. I have said I just want to be able to earn a living from my books but there is one thing I would love and that is to be sat on a bus or a train and look across and see someone reading one of my books, I am not sure if I would say anything to them but maybe I would ask if they were enjoying it and if they say yes offer to sign it for them but guess I would try to read their expression first lol

 

Nominees

If you are reading this you are nominated because I would love to know what your dreams are 😀

 

Questioning the World

Raw…

I started this post a dozen times, then decided not to write it , it simply hurt too much but not writing it does not ease the pain either so instead I will talk about the raw emotion that hurts so badly it is a physical pain. I am writing this Friday night but not posting until Saturday morning, that is assuming I do not change my mind again.

If you are not an animal lover you won’t understand how losing a four legged family member hurts as much as losing a two legged one but it does, I won’t even enter into that discussion and the ocean of tears I have cried today would confirm it to the hardest of hearts.

Today was the fourth time I have sat and said goodbye to a a beloved dog.  The first time was my sisters dog, that was devastating, it was also the worst way to experience it as the vet got the dosage wrong and it took several injections before she was at peace,I was not happy and as it was at an animal charity vets it made me realise you do get what you pay for.  Ever since, even when I would have qualified for free treatments I have always found the money to pay.

The second time was Smokey, he was a rescue dog on death row, age unknown but the vet thought about eighteen months old and I was only blessed with 7 years with him before he collapsed one morning and had a fit.  He got back up after and seemed okay but a little while later had another.  I rushed him to the vets, they gave him medicine to stop the seizures and I had to leave him there for a few hours for observation. I rung at the instructed time was told he was doing well and was on my way to collect him when they rang to say he was fitting again.  They concluded that it was a brain haemorrhage nothing could be done, they had run numerous blood tests looking for any other cause for a perfectly healthy dog to keel over but nothing showed at all, I sat on the floor in the back room at the vets and held him with his head in my lap as he went to sleep, it was so peaceful and tranquil and I knew I had done everything I could.

Roll forward several years and Rat the Yorkshire Terrier, he came into our lives middle aged and from a good home that could not keep him at that time, he was around eleven and was beginning to suffer with the doggy version of dementia when he began to have kidney failure. again nothing could really be done, he stayed home until it became clear he was beginning to suffer, at that point I took him to the vets and he was put to sleep, again it was a blessing and he went peacefully to sleep.  The only guilt I felt after at his end was that he loved going to the vets because he always got a new squeak toy whenever we went but on that final trip I went home without one.

Then there was this morning.

I knew it was coming, we had known for the last week.  Unlike the other dogs there was no illness, no pain, just the inevitable finality of age.  For 16 and a half years Boris had been my shadow, I lost track of the number of times I turned round too quickly and tripped over him.  The last few days he had literally not let me out of his sight willingly, when I had to do the school run or go to work he had sat by the door and waited, you might ask how I knew but I just did, I could read that dog just like my kids, I knew him inside out.

I know he wanted to stay with me and in one way I am glad he was at home when he went but his passing was harder than all the others put together.  Partly there is the length of time I had him of course, then just the type of dog he was, he was convinced he was a lapdog and never accepted he was really too big to sit on peoples knees.  But there is another aspect that I never experienced until today and that is the fear that you are doing the wrong thing.

The clinical induced sleep you go through at the vets is different to the way it happens at home.  I was lucky my ex’s mum was with us to help hold me together and reassure me because I was scared.  Your hear about the death rattle but at the vets you don’t experience it, my ex’s mum has worked in care homes for decades and has attended deathbeds more times than she likes to think about, she helped me understand what was normal and stopped me doubting that I was doing the right thing.  And believe me the final few hours I was doubting myself, I knew he was not in pain but I did wonder if I should take him to the vets and put an end to it rather than waiting for nature to take its course. The irony is I had discussed it with my daughter earlier that morning and we decided to wait a little longer but then I texted her and said it was killing me watching him as he seemed to be fighting to stay with me, she rang the vets and was ringing me to discuss the options at the exact time he took his final breath. I believe he went as he wanted, at home with me by his side, but that is another thing that you struggle to cope with when you are home alone.

You see at the vets they are trained, they know the signs to look for, have the stethoscope to listen to the chest, but when you are sat there trying to see through the tears pouring down your cheeks your mind plays tricks on you.  You think you see breathing but the hand on the chest tells you there is none, you think you feel a pulse but then realise that it is your own pounding through your fingertips, you know they have gone but you are terrified you have got it wrong and they are still there and you should be doing something. It is the same panic that you feel when you flush a fish down the toilet, it does not make a difference it was floating belly up the second you hit flush you become convinced that you saw it swim and that you have sent it to the sewers, now times that by a hundred or so.

Then there is the pain, this is no different whether you are at home or at the vets, but you cannot explain it to someone who has not felt it, the tears that pour, stinging your eyes, you try to hold it in but then it feels like your head will explode, it is like someone has hands clamped on your temples and is squeezing slowly, increasing the pressure constantly until you allow the dams to break again.  Then the pains in your chest, when they talk of dying from a broken heart it is assumed to be metaphorical but anyone who has felt this knows the actual pain is physical, not a knife through the heart, the pain is not that sharp more like someone hitting you with a sledgehammer over and over again.

Why have I written this? In part because I am a writer, that is what I do, this is how I make sense of what I am feeling. You see the hardest part right now is that the tears are flowing down my cheeks and the one who would normally lick them away, as he has done so many times down the years is no longer here to do so.  Do I believe he is in a better place? Do I believe we will meet again? The fact is the answer to those questions is totally irrelevant at the minute because right now the pain is too raw for beliefs to even begin to numb the heartbreak…

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