Sunday, 31 October 2021

this and that with a sprinkle of rain

Glasgow is going to be in the headlines over the next couple of weeks, if you watch the news are reporting from COP26, you might get a glimpse of this vibrant city. Maybe you are even visiting? Let me know if you do, I can make you a coffee if you don't mind the mess.

Richard and I have been taking turns stripping lining paper from our bedroom wall. The house was previously owned by a self-taught DIY enthusiast and we prepared for surprises. We have one socket in the house that is live but not connected to any circuits. Not sure where the electricity is coming from, maybe thin air. The paper stripping was hard work but it is done now. A much more satisfying job actually than my paid work. It will be good to have another room fully refurbished from the original walls up.

Pippin, our tortoise shell cat is getting ready for here thyroid radiation treatment on Monday. She is of course completely unaware of this. We piled together some lesser loved and damaged blankets for her to sleep on and transfer some home smells onto. She'll be at the hospital kennels for two weeks until she is no longer radioactive. We thought some cosy blankets would be appreciated but as we won't get them back, no fancy quilts for her hospital stay.

I am in a sock knitting phase. A woman needs plenty of knitted socks in winter. I just finished an antique rose coloured plain sock, knitted as a warm-up. I have two balls of yarn that are calling out to me to be knitted up next, a spring lawn green solid and a fiery orange/pink/red variegated yarn. 

Book group is happening again! I am quite excited to see friends and have a chat. I am not sure how much book talk there will be, too much to catch up. We were reading The Heart's Invisible Furies by John Boyne. I really enjoyed this.

I booked a gown to receive my Teaching Excellence Award during Winter Graduations. A new world was revealed to me. If there is one thing British do well, it is pomp. I will be wearing a gown from my PhD awarding University in Switzerland. Who even knew there were Swiss university graduation gowns! I was not wearing one at my own two graduations and I don't remember anyone else wearing one either (but I am old and my memory sketchy). I hope the gown is clean and doesn't smell of mothballs and sweat of the previous wearer.

I had my final blood test as a Novavax vaccine trial participant. Novavax has finally filed for approval in the UK. I have a prescription for a deployed vaccine because I may need to travel for work before Novavax is approved where I might travel to... it is so bloody complicated. I'll be super boosted. Meanwhile, Sam has to travel to Glasgow to get his second second jag (not a typo). He had his first jag here in Scotland, the second one in England where he now lives. Both countries insist he is not fully vaccinated because the two arms of the NHS are not connected electronically and he can't get a vaccine certificate. Must not start ranting. Must not start ranting. Must not start ranting.

James asked to go to Tesco to buy one of those abominable supermarket halloween costumes. While there, I thought I'd buy a bottle of nice Fentyman's pink lemonade for book group and promptly dropped it. Luckily I scan and pack on the go so the bottle was contained in a fabric tote with other bits and bobs. The lemonade went everywhere but the glass was neatly contained in the bag. The other groceries and my beautiful felted purse where wet and sticky. We didn't find a costume either. James went as himself to his Scout halloween party. He does have a might black eye and looks scary without dressing up.

I also took James running shoe shopping. He is in the adult size range, which fills me with despair because the shoes cost almost as much as a weekly grocery shop. He also needed cross country spikes but it felt too painful to buy these new, too. There may be some his size in the club spares box. Spikes don't wear out so much because kids don't wear them much much. On the way home we stopped at the local zero waste shop to refill shampoo and conditioner bottles. It was my first visit and I loved it. I'll go back with dry food containers soon. Kidney beans on tap, how exciting. 

If the rains continue, we might need cross country spikes for our daily dog walks. Or maybe a boat. I am waiting for the worst of the rain to pass to go for my Sunday jog. This Sunday is my favourite Sunday of the year. I love it when the clocks turn back and I am finally getting that hour back I lost back in March. I know, silly but I try to enjoy the little wins every day brings. 

In other news, I posted two photographs on Instagram this week. This brings me to the grand total of 28 posts since 2016. I might post more because it encourages me to look around more and take photos of this beautiful (currently drab and dreich) world around me. 

Thanks for visiting on this wet Sunday morning. 


  1. Don’t get me ranting either about cross border health things.In April we moved from Wales to England.The two do not speak to each other regarding COVID jabs.What a performance to get an official letter showing we had been jabbed.

  2. I don't post to Instagram although I have a few lingering there. It was a hassle with the way that I do my photography. I probably should sort it out but I can never seem to be bothered.

  3. I did sympathize regarding the lemonade, particularly the damage to your purse. I dropped a carton of milk transferring it from the shopping trolley to the conveyor belt- I felt terrible that someone had to clean up my mess.
    I hope you enjoy your book group. I always enjoy your blog and admire your quilts, and reading your news. Well done on your Teaching Excellence award, how lovely to have such a joyous event to look forward to. Our Covid situation is puttering along, we are still masked. Last week there was a major incident here where an anti-vaxxer employed at a hospital entered the hospital and stabbed a supervisor in the neck, and is believed to have killed two relatives. The supervisor is alive,. A Doctor and others nearby managed to stop any further attacks. A horrific event.

  4. I hope Pippin's treatment goes well. Love that you have free magic electricity coming from nowhere. Shoe shopping is indeed painful isn't it. Mine two eldest have large feet as well, so they are very limited. Middle boy was tasked with walking the dog this morning and had to turn around and come back halfway because of flooding. He and the dog were also completely soaked. CJ xx

  5. Bucketing here too this afternoon and feels dark already. Good to have a blog post from you to cheer me up. X Doris

  6. Running shoes are expensive but worth it, I think, to prevent future joint problems. Congrats on the award! It is nice to be recognized for your hard work!

  7. I would rant too over vaccinations. Your poor son. In this joined up world how difficult is it. Empathising about the shoe purchase. It felt like I needed a new mortgage to pay for my three sons shoes all at once. Somehow they all needed them at the same time and they were never in good enough condition to hand down. Sending cyber hugs to your puss cat , hope the treatment goes ok. You’ll miss her I know. Enjoy your graduation I’m sure your gown will be clean. I remember when we rented them for the boys part of the exorbitant cost was for dry cleaning. Have a good week. B x

  8. Ah, raining where you are too! It's just not letting up, is it? Glad to hear you're knitting socks ;) and you will love the graduation in the gown, it's a proper day out. The hire gowns are all beautifully kept and don't smell at all! :) xx

  9. Always enjoy a visit here and seeing all your pics. Vaccination are all over the place with which one etc. My son had 1st Pfizer covid very sick and now had another jab Astrzenica so he could get certificate to allow him in places. Thought you had to have months gap after being sick...... He is ok thank goodness and 41. All the very best for puss xoxo

  10. Younger Son has big wide feet and autism - this means shoe shopping can be very very stressful. Last time,he said the shoes fit him well, but vi think they were too tight, as his ingrown toenail came back. And when he did his self referral for podiatry, he insisted his autism wasn't relevant & wouldn't put it on the form, so they've said as an over 18 year old, he'll have to go in on his own. Cannot see that happening, but he needs to phone them & ask if I can go in with him, because they need to speak to him not me.

  11. Best wishes to Pippin. I hope the treatment goes well and she is soon back home with you.
    What a sticky pain with the lemonade incident. I'm sure lots of us have had similar supermarket horror stories. My last one was with a large display of plum punnets that rolled all over the floor, the more I picked up the more rolled away. So embarassing!

  12. Home repairs though exhausting are often so rewarding as well. I'm sure the new room will look wonderful.
    Ugh the vaccine debacle sounds painful.. good of him to come back to get an extra jab.
    I once bought spoiled milk and needed to take it back to the shop. I packed it up tightly.. or so I thought. Hit a bump, knocked over the spoiled milk and my car was was soaked.. the smell was almost impossible to get rid of.
    Oh and congratulations on your award!!

  13. Hope the ceremony goes well. It's fun to dress up, I think. That's too bad about the Covid shot situation. It's caused a lot of stress. I am interested to hear about your experience with the Novovax vaccine.

    1. We were well looked after on the trial and always well informed. I was unblinded last week and know now when I had the vaccine and when the placebo (it was a cross-over study). No side effects after the vaccine, not even a sore arm. I think it generally has a low side effect profile and looks to be highly efficacious.Happy to tell you more, just let me know.

  14. Extra hugs for Pippin (and you). I hope her treatment goes well. X

  15. Sending good wishes for Pippin's complete recovery and no radioactivity or glowing in the dark. That rigamarole (seemed like the prefect word) about Sam and the vaccination jags between two countries is really annoying. Will this never end?

  16. Oh no! what a lemonade disaster but made slightly better with the help of a fabric bag, less dangerous. That NHS things sounds like a right pain in the arse. Jo x


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