Thursday, 18 May 2017

Thursday round up: good stuff

How are you all? I am good, it has been a good week so far although Richard's absence was noticeable. He will be back late tomorrow. I was thinking of joining Five on Friday over at F.A.S.T tomorrow but I sometimes don't get around reading the other links and it feels wrong not do read all other posts in a linkup. Here a random Thursday roundup of news.

James and Alistair working out their weekly earnings

:: Sam has finished his Higher examinations on Wednesday. He is now on study leave until June with nothing more to study. I call that lucky! Sam and I celebrated with a glass of red wine. Yes we are nothing but classy.... He also got a much wished for take away pizza dinner. He deserved it after all the hard work.

:: I deserved it, too. I had a job interview on Wednesday to continue the work I am doing now. My initial contract was for six months only. I got an email confirming that I am the recommended candidate earlier today. I am really happy, it has taken so long to re-establish myself in academia after my redundancy in 2013. My job is varied and I have a lot of flexibility, my colleagues are nice and my line manager is great.

:: Alistair was also celebrating but he didn't get any red wine. His reward was chocolate cake. He was worker of the week and for something 'real'! It must be difficult for teachers to pick a worker and pupil of the week every week! As with most things, there will be some children that shine all the time and others that don't. Mine seem to fall in the latter category and they usually get picked towards the end of the school year, in a 'hmm-lets-see-who's-not-been-awarded-yet fashion. Not this time. Alistair was worker of the week for excellent functional writing. It took me a while to tease out of him what this actually meant. He had written instructions for making a Viking brooch.

:: James on the other hand is having a bit of a rocky week. He has been vomiting all afternoon. I wonder if his unusual anger all week were the first signs of sickness. I feel a bit guilty now for not allowing him to go to his cub Scouts meeting on Tuesday. Shouting, swearing, kicking, shoving and throwing stuff before and after school... not good. Reasoning didn't help. I decided to keep him at home so he could have an early night. I don't dish out this most severe of punishments lightly, not least because it is also a punishment for myself, missing out on the usual 90 minutes of relative calm when they are both at Scouts. We had a long chat about not taking out frustrations on others and played Dragonwood so not all was lost. He was trying so hard to manage his frustrations after Tuesday and now he is sick, poor lamb.

:: The chore list is working out well so far. James and Alistair note down their chores more or less accurately and add up their own rewards on Sundays. It is a double win really, they get to earn some money and they practice adding up double digit numbers. The older two are also doing some chores. They tend to pick the those that pay the most. Of course they would! Looking after the younger siblings is a chore fought over, it pays best. Sam has lost interest in cleaning the bathroom, which is also well remunerated because of the yuck factor. Ah well, can't win it all.

:: We've had torrential rains over the weekend and some decent down pours during the week. It was well needed, the garden was bone dry, not something that happens often here in Scotland. I braved it and planted my freesia bulbs. I know, in Scotland! Yesterday I noticed that a couple of shoots have emerged from the soil. Keep your fingers crossed. A few of my new plants don't do so well. I bought them at Sarah Ravens, thinking the quality would be superior and the return for my money excellent. However, the root balls were so firm, it was impossible to loosen them up for planting (even after soaking) and of course the plants struggled to set roots. I lifted one up two weeks ago and it still looks exactly the same as on the day of planting. The cheap B&Q plants did far better. What is your experience with plant buying? I am hopeless with seeds so don't even bother.

:: I am planning a sewing bonanza this weekend. I have one dress cut out and ready to go and another much revised Sorbetto top ready to cut out and sew. I have also decided to make a shirt dress and a party frock and some more t-shirts... not quite sure when but sometime soon.

:: Instagram. I have decided that I don't like it. I much prefer words over a photo with a caption.

One more day to go then it is the weekend! I hope you have some nice plans. Thanks for stopping by and saying hello. xx


  1. What interesting weeks you have! That's super about the award and that it was for something specific, not just"in general". I know you son is relieved to have his testing done, sounds like a well deserved glass of wine for the both of you, that's wonderful about the job. I don't buy expensive plants, but I don't buy cheap ones either, generally midrange. My husband grows things from cuttings and seeds, his fingers are much greener than mine.
    We're in Montana to visit Yellowstone Park and we're dealing with snow, yes snow in mid-May 3-4 inches of it. Have a great weekend.

  2. Hopefully James is feeling better now. Glad to hear about your job, especially as you are enjoying it. Love the term 'study leave'. Sounds like he's earnt it. Good luck with the sewing. Gardening for us this weekend, everything has gone beserk in all the rain. I'm a seed girl and I need to plant some of them out pronto as they are climbing out of their seed trays. Have a good weekend :). B x

  3. Sorry your son is ill.. I hope the rest of you don't get the virus! I look forward to seeing what you get sewn this weekend. We are going to be doing some clean-up in the house as we're expecting two of my cousins to visit in a few weeks with their husbands.. their first time to visit Oregon. I have my work cut out for me! ((hugs)), Teresa :-)

  4. Hope James feels better soon, good news about your job. My family are battling colds. I really hope I don't get it, it's so annoying having a cold particularly if you've got things to do. I've had some time off work already with a strained tendon in the back of my ankle so can't add a cold to the mix. All the best with your plants, not my favourite pastime. I love their beauty but not the rest. Over 30 years ago I used to work in my parents flower and garden nursery. It was a florist, shrubs, bedding plants and their own tomatoes, cucumbers for sale along with general planting items such as soil, pots etc. I would help with all sorts, including pricking out and potting on trays of seeds into punnets ready for selling. A punnet of bedding flowers for planting would've cost between 60p - 80p back then. Happy days! Cathy x

  5. I wanted so badly to like Instagram and gave it a try for two years but I'm just not good at it. I can't remember to use my phone to take pictures when I'm out, and life around home is not Insta-worthy. I can blog about all kinds of boring things, but quick snapshots are not necessarily my thing. Oh, well. I'll still be blogging long after everyone gives up reading mine, probably. I'm sorry James is sick. I hope he's well soon. There are so many bugs going through our school right now. It's a toss of the dice as to what you'll catch, but rest assured, you WILL catch something. :( It sounds like a good week otherwise for your family, I'm so glad to read nice news anywhere I can find it. I hope you have a good weekend.

  6. Disappointing about the little plants. I was thinking the other day the quality at a local garden centre looked really poor. And with online ones it's always a bit of a lottery. I bought a white magnolia from Thompson & Morgan that was absolutely dreadful, 3/4 of the stem was dead. Should have complained really but it was a bare root winter plant and by the time it was obvious, well, I just didn't get round to it. Really annoying as it wasn't cheap and it was a rare treat. Well done Alistair on worker of the week, and I hope James is better soon. Mine usually have extra fury too when they're coming down with something. Many congratulations on the job front, that's really excellent news, very well done you. I hope you all have a lovely weekend. CJ xx

  7. Sounds like a very good week with much cause for celebration. Hope your boy's sickness has abated and he managed to enjoy some of those lovely cakes in the first picture. Happy sewing!

  8. Your week sounds good and challenging and decisive and happy and caring and productive... Hope you have a good weekend. We are sleeping at the cabin tonight and need to do some house decluttering - My lovely garden? trashed by a puppy. Hey ho! maybe next year. I have however managed to get my Sarah Raven seeds to grow last Autumn and have planted them out, they ones not eaten by a dog are doing really well. Jo x

  9. You have reminded me of working with my oldest son who raged from time to time. After trying to reason with him a bit, I tried to find something strenuous for him to jumping rope which he was good at and the activity seemed to help him release his anger more positively. I hope James is feeling better and that you have a fine family reunion this weekend, and that you get some satisfying sewing done. It is great that you got good news about the job you want! As an elementary teaching assistant I sometimes got a pink slip in the spring and had to wait to see if the school board was able to come up with funding for my position...which thankfully they did because I loved my job. Cheers for Sam and Alistair's industry and the success of your chore training program :) Happy Weekend to you and yours, Christina xx

  10. Lots of good news in this post. Congratulations on securing your job, it's great when you find something you really enjoy doing so it's brilliant news that the work is continuing. Well done to Alistair too, being Worker of the Week is a great achievement. I bet Sam's pleased his exams are over, I think he definitely deserved pizza and wine after all the hard work. Not such a good week for James though, I do hope he's feeling better now. I think the chore list is a great idea, I wish I'd have thought of something similar when my two were young, it was always a battle getting them to do any jobs around the house.

  11. Instagram is so completely not blogging, isn't it? I don't mind it, actually, but it's like a women's magazine as against a decent book. There are days when I just manage the quick fix and days when I need to bury myself in deep, rich text.

  12. Congratulations to you on the job and Alistair on being worker of the week... And I do hope poor James is feeling better. I like Instagram but it doesn't replace blogging, it's just different.. And instant!

  13. Hi Christina - always enjoy hearing your news. Great news about the job. AS levels still making life difficult here - Kate feels the need to make all of us share her revision misery! Love seeing pictures of your boys - the are growing fast. X Doris

  14. Great news about the job! That's great the Alistair was chosen for worker of the week too. I recently joined instagram and do rather like it, though I don't think it could ever replace a blog. Blog posts say so much more!

    1. I've just found you and followed you, though I realise that might be pointless, hehe!

  15. Dear CHristina, I am hoping your sewing weekend has gone as planned and that you are not at home with more sick children. Hooray for Sam, well done on that one and as for the littles they are really not so little anymore. I am wondering if those boys were exposed to drugs/alcohol when birth mom was pregnant. I work with so many kids like that and their anger is just overwhelming. They can't control themselves, it is like a switch is thrown and they can't deal with it all. I do a lot of calming, deep breathing, hands to lightly touch their foreheads while taking deep breaths, and last but not least I roll them in blankets and squeeze the stuffing out of them. Deep pressure helps them get organized. Just some thoughts to add to your already busy life.
    Sending you a hug,

  16. Congratulations on your job, Christina, that's fantastic news! And well done to James. I'm intrigued about your chore list. Mine are a little too young for that yet, but it's definitely something to think about when they are older.

  17. Here I am, tail end Charlie here after your proposed sewing bonaza has taken place! It is always gorgeous to read your family round up Christina and congrats on the red wine and the job news. I do hope James has fully recovered. I love my Instagram, it is getting far more of my love at the mo than my blog, although I notice I am getting more and more wordy on my Instagram posts!
    Anyway cheerio for now!
    Wren x


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