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 Wow there is a lot to update you on. Might have to use cuts.


I finally went horseriding! It's been 10 years ish since I was last on a horse and I have been meaning to start lessons again for years. A groupon offer came up and I went for it. I really really enjoyed it. Remembered a lot more than I thought I would, although can't seem to keep my ankles down! Road a lovely horse called Sultan, big black boy. It took me a while to remember that I can control what speed he goes as I kept nearly falling off doing sitting trot without stirrups as he kept going quite fast and bouncey! Unfortunately a combo of not having ridden for 10 years, lots of work without stirrups and some dodgey exercises to 'open the hips' put me out of action for nearly a week. Couldn't sit or more or lie down without pain. Took a long time to get the muscles working again but really looking forward to my next lesson. I wasn't able to book any for a while as Sam was worried about me damaging myself before Finland but now that I'm home I'm looking at booking a lesson for this coming Thurs and then  doing it fortnightly. Don't think I can quite afford to do it weekly as lessons are expensive. Sam is going to give it a go one of these days, I'm hoping he likes it. Would love to be able to go on hacks with him. 


Pretty much taking care of itself. Having to keep attacking the grass which is annoying. A strimmer came with the house but have exhausted it and it no longer works. Bought a manual mower last night and attacked the lawn again today, Gods that takes so much effort. Really wanting more of the garden as veg beds, would mean less mowing and more crops! We bought a fairly decent sized green house which will help us grow a wider variety of bits but we've yet to put it up. So much stuff to do. We've had a mini harvest from the garden, a few strawberries (should get lots next year as the plants are proliferating like mad) and some tiny garlic as I'm really impatient. Have planted out the red cabbage and the rest of the alpine strawberries, unfortunately the peppers got forgotten on the windowsill and are now dead :-(. I have a manic herb barrell though, parsley thyme and mint overflowing, think they may have crowded out the basil. Looking to work on attacking weeds from the path and patios and keeping on top of the grass so it actually looks nice out there. Oh and we have garden furniture, just need a BBQ now!


Not much has been done inside with the house. The major thing is we got a new back door just before we went on holiday. It's not a horrid uPVC door, it opens and closes without you having to shoulder it, it has a nice big clear window and it has a cat flap. Am very happy with it. Sam has even stained it a nice colour. The cats are liking their cat flap, Bagsy was weary of it but she seems better now. May be able to get rid of the litter tray next week! This weekend though is attack the hallway, hopefully get it floored sometime between this weekend and next. That'll be all the floors down and it will just be skirting boards that remain :-D. Not much else to report on the house front though. Mum and Paul came up and we very nearly got a fan in the bathroom but the drill teeth broke so it's on the back burner again.


Sam and I went camping with Becka to a camp we have been invited to for several years now. I wish I had taken them up on the offer sooner. It was great. We knew over half the people there, it was much smaller and relaxed than Oakleaf and it was just a pleasure to be part of. I got to go my first May Pole and really really enjoyed it. We shall be going next year for sure. I really wanna find more camps to go to as I don't think there is anywhere in the world, other than my own home, where I feel as comfortable and right as I do in a field of pagans. I really do miss it when I leave and I think I need that feeling more than twice a year!


So I've mentioned it in passing a few times already but we went to Finland for Midsummer with Lis and Kay. It was lovely. I really do love that country and it's food, sooo much lactose free stuff, even ice cream. I miss it! We stayed in a cabin on an island, got bitten half to death by mozzies, fished, ate, played board games, watched many beautiful sunsets that never quite finished, drank many varieties of fruit cider and had saunas. Oh how I miss saunas. Not the hot rooms you get in the UK but a proper Finnish sauna, with a wood stove, freshly made vasta, cold buckets of water and a lake to jump into followed by a cider. *happy sigh* When we get a permanent enough house we will have a sauna of our own. I can't wait. Till then it shall just have to be more trips to Finland. I'd really like to see it in the winter some time. 


So far so good. Got my first year report written and submitted and have my meeting set for 15th August. That's where they decide if I'm working well enough to continue *nervous*. Also have my first draft of my first publication with my supervisors, it's only going to be a short communication as another group did a bigger study than us and are looking to publish so we need to get in quick, but it's something none the less.


Saw a psych Dr here and he was happy for me to come off the citalopram. It hasn't gone as well as I hoped. Been very down and have been having to take diazepam again but I'm already seeing a few positives, more interested in some vital parts of life that the meds had killed so am happy for that. Had a really good day today, productive at work and at home but had another down when I broke a screw in the back door trying to put a net curtain up. Thankfully updating the journal has helped that pass but it means I'm not out of the woods yet. 

Reading: Well I finished one of the lost crafts books Becka got me Red Sky at Night. It was very good and I really would recommend it. Lots of really useful little bits of knowledge. I've started on the other one she got me which is actually called Lost Crafts but I'm not feeling it as much. It's much more about traditional ways of doing things that aren't everyday things, thatching roofs, building walls etc. That's great if it actually told you how to do it but it's only 2 or 3 pages on each thing, it's not going to give you more than a brief idea of the history, what was done and current state of affairs in that space, where as the other book you could actually put into practice the things you read about. I'm still reading the Tamora Pierce short stories, I'm about 3/4 of the way through and still really liking. Also in the process of reading a very short book on wine making. It's a book from Boots and is really quite good, I understand a lot more of why I do what I do now and will be making some changes to some recipes. I took Kirstin Cashore's Graceling with me to Finland and really really enjoyed that. Great book, def as good as Fire and again highly recommend. I'm very happy to hear that her 3rd book is a follow on, Bitterblue, but very sad that it won't be out until Summer 2012 :-(. Also on the topic of fiction I read Richard Castle's Heat Wave (aka a book written by a fictional character from the TV show Castle. It was a lot better than I thought it would be and I have bought the follow up Naked Heat and will hopefully be reading it soon. After digging out Hellsing to show Marcus when he and Becka were visiting, I felt the need to chase down Hellsing Dawn again, unfortunately there is still no English release so I had to read some scanlations on line. It doesn't appear to be complete however but it was nice to see a young, if annoying, Walter. I really need to finish the Hellsing manga, think I am only up to 8 despite it being complete at 10 and sitting on my bookshelf! Lastly I also took Snake fat and Knotted cord (I think that's the title) with me to Finland. It's a book on Finnish folk magic so I thought it would be fitting to read in Finland. Sadly it's a bit hard going. It has some interesting historical bits in there but the author has no writing skills. At times it feels like its just one long list of facts, there's no linkage, no theories. It's sad because you can see that a lot of effort has gone into researching for this book, a lot of work and a lot of passion, but the read is boring without some joining flow to it. I fear it may go back on the bookshelf unfinished :-( Wow I'd been busier than I thought I had been with the reading!
So that's everything that's gone on since the last post. What's coming up? Well as I said above there the garden shed and more beds to dig, more plants to plants. There's the hallway floor and skirtings. There's horseriding lessons (yay). I'm also feeling a bit fat and lacking in rhythm. Went to a school friend's wedding just before Finland and my old friends could dance so well. So I'm going to try a Zumba class, it's like keep fit and dancing so hopefully will get me a little bit more intune with music and loose a few pounds at the same time! I'm really hoping it's a bit like the tribal belly dancing I did in Manchester as I really really enjoyed that and haven't been able to find anything similar. I'm also going to try swimming. I really enjoyed swimming in the lake in Finland in the breaks from the sauna and did a lot better than I thought. It would also be a good thing for Sam to do. Hopefully we can try and go one night this week and see if we can keep it up. I'll be a busy girl, PhD, horseriding, Zumba, swimming, gardening and housework. Not to mention I want to learn to knit and to sew, but one (or 5) things at a time hey? Lastly we are making plans for travelling to Essen for the Boardgaming convention this Autumn, really hope it all goes well, although it does mean that I won't be going to Disney. First time since 2003 that I won't visit a Disney in an odd year :-s.
Right bed calls. If you've read to the end then I hope you are less bored than you must have been at the start!
Oh and I got a hair cut, so short it can only tie back in pigtails! But I am finding it isn't too bad curly at this length. Oh and I've managed to get an ice cream maker off freecycle so now that there is lactofree cream in the UK I can try and make my own ice cream! Annnnd I have a new laptop. Mashiro isn't quite dead, she's still ok for surfing, but I am now on Alucard, he's an Acer and he is red and black., that's the important stuff I'm sure. Just like Mashiro being a Dell and being purple and silver. Sam worries about the techincal bits for me :-D


Just worked some muscles really hard that hadn't been used for a long time. Think I strained my groin muscles, was very intense pain to start with that slowly eased off over the course of the week.

Hope you find out what was wrong though.

You on FB?

i wouldnt particularly say that Zumba is like tribal bellydancing, i have done both, zumba is more latin moves - but this can vary depending on the teacher.

Ive learnt tribal with my bellydance class and perform next week with it. Zumba is definitely fun and very active, more interesting than being in a gym

do you have something like a curves up by you , its a womens gym but you only do it for half an hour, a minute on each different apapratus, i also found that better than the gym as you didnt get bored, there they measure inches lost rather than weight loss itself

I see what you mean. I meant more of the fact that it's dancing rather than just keep and it's dancing that you can learn the moves to and learn how they interact with the music.

I did some tribal belly dancing back in Manc and really enjoyed it. I don't think I'd be able to do classic belly dancing with belly wibbles and scarey things like that but this was a combo of indian and gypsy dancing which was really easy to pick up but fast enough paced that you could be exercising and not realise it.

I don't like the gym at all. The only things I do there is walking and weights. I'm not interested in building muscle and I can walk for free. I wasn't allowed to do anything else because of my knees. They are a bit better now but I'd rather not stress them if I can keep active without it.

I'm hoping that between swimming, horseriding, gardening and maybe Zumba I can shed a couple of inches.

i never thought i woudl get my hips to move the way they should in traditional bellydancing, but their gradually learning,

there are still moves im struggling with after a year and a half lol,

we even bollywood style routines as well as veils, turkish egyptian and even hawaiian : S which is another im involved with next week lol.

January 2012



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