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Sunday 30 October 2011

Sunday Snaps and We've Got A Winner!

Hi everyone.  Hope you're all having a good weekend.  As promised, my three grandchildren picked out the winner for my one year blogaversary giveaway!

Ruby picked out the first one, and I'm delighted to say that the winner is BELLE from Tales of a Loser who is Sometimes a Winner.  Well Belle, you're certainly a winner today!

Eli and Eleanor also wanted to pick out a name, so Belle wins the first prize of the £20 Amazon Gift Voucher, the Little Book of Devon and a few bits and pieces, and I have decided that two more of my bloggy friends will receive the Little Book of Devon.

Eleanor picked out Teresa (sorry Teresa. I've just noticed that I've spelt your name wrong on the piece of paper!) and Eli picked out Retired English Teacher (Sally).  Congratulations to the three of you, and thank you to everyone who took part.  Would the three winners please e-mail me their addresses, and I will get their gifts off to them.

Now it's time for a few Sunday Snaps -

Eli with his Aunty

Granddaughter number 1 and Granddaughter number 2

Two daughters with Eli

Ruby with Alfred

Tomorrow we are having a little Halloween party here.  My younger daughter's fourteen year old stepson will be bringing along along five of his friends, and we will be having fireworks  and making up the Smores that SkippyMom kindly sent me some time ago. 

Happy Halloween everyone and I hope you don't get too scared!!

From ghoulies and ghosties
And long-leggedy beasties
And things that go bump in the night,
Good Lord, deliver us!
~Scottish Saying

Thursday 27 October 2011

Just A Bit Of Fun .....

Spring Classes for Women at 

By Friday, 
October 7th, 2011 

Class 1
Up in Winter, Down in Summer - How to Adjust a Thermostat
Step by Step, with Slide Presentation.
Meets 4 weeks, Monday and Wednesday for 2 hrs beginning at 7:00 PM..

Class 2
Which Takes More Energy - Putting the Toilet Seat Down,
or Bitching About It for 3 Hours?
Round Table Discussion.
Meets 2 weeks, Saturday 12:00 for 2 hours.

Class 3
Is It Possible To Drive Past Marks & Spencer Without Stopping?--Group Debate.
Meets 4 weeks, Saturday 10:00 PM for 2 hours.

Class 4
Fundamental Differences Between a Handbag and a Suitcase--Pictures and Explanatory Graphics.
Meets Saturdays at 2:00 PM for 3 weeks.

Class 5
Curling Tongs--Can They Levitate and Fly Into The Bathroom Cabinet?
Examples on Video.
Meets 4 weeks, Tuesday and Thursday for 2 hours beginning
At 7:00 PM

Class 6
How to Ask Questions During Commercials and Be Quiet During the Programme.
Help Line Support and Support Groups.
Meets 4 Weeks, Friday and Sunday 7:00 PM

Class 7
Can a Bath be taken without 14 Different Kinds of Soaps and Shampoos?
Open Forum
Monday at 8:00 PM, 2 hours.

Class 8
Health Watch -They Make Medicine for PMT - and How To Use It!
Three nights; Monday, Wednesday, Friday at 7:00 PM for 2 hours.

Class 9
I Was Wrong and He Was Right!--Real Life Testimonials.
Tuesdays at 6:00 PM Location to be determined. 

Class 10
How to Parallel Park in less than 20 minutes without an insurance claim.
Driving Simulations.
4 weeks, Saturday's noon, 2 hours.

Class 11
Learning to Live - How to Apply Brakes Without Throwing Passengers Through the Windshield
Tuesdays at 7:00 PM, location to be determined

Class 12
How to Shop by Yourself.
Meets 4 weeks, Tuesday and Thursday for 2 hours beginning at 7:00 PM. 

Upon completion of
 ANY of the above courses, diplomas will be issued to the survivors.

I have tried to be good whilst the family are here, so my little laptop hasn't been switched on, and I have refrained from blogging, so you may have missed me from your recent posts (then again, you probably haven't even noticed that I wasn't there! Hee Hee!).  Normal service will be resumed next week.

Everyone who left a comment on my anniversary post will be  included in my giveaway.  All the family will be here for lunch on Saturday and the draw will take place then, just so that they can make sure there is no cheating going on!  I will post a photo as well.  

I hope you're all being good in my absence!  Hugs.

Sunday 23 October 2011

One Year Ago Today ....

I always knew I had the best bloggy friends ever, but you certainly all proved it with your lovely comments on my last post, and with all the tasty ideas you came up with on how to cook sweet potatoes! I couldn't believe just how many comments I had!  I have tried a couple of the ways already, and they were delicious! Phew! Thank goodness for that.  I have printed the list of comments off, so that I have a handy reference guide.  Thank you so much!

Well, I find it rather difficult to believe, but it was exactly one year ago today that 'thisisme' of Southhamsdarling launched  herself into the unsuspecting bloggy world! If you want to read my very first post, then you can find it here. 

It was interesting for me to see that my dear friends SkippyMom and LindyLouMac in Italy were the very first ones to comment.  There is another comment there (Anonymous), which I now know  was made by my dear son-in-law who lives in France!

I seem to have come a very long way since that first futile attempt and, now, some  318 posts later, I find that I have 155 Followers and have made some very dear friends from all over the world.  To all of you who pop over to comment on almost every post, and for those of you who pop over occasionally,  I would like to say a big heartfelt 'thank you', for it is YOU who have made this past year so enjoyable for me. 

I have said this before, but I have laughed with you, worried for you, cried with you and felt great joy for you.  I know that if I ever needed support, love or encouragement, you would all be there for me in abundance! (and that is really good to know). 

I guess that this really should be where I have my first giveaway!  I have decided to have a little book on Devon so that you can read all about the County in which I live, together with a £20 Amazon book voucher and a couple of little goodies actually from Ivybridge itself.

The Little Book of Devon
I do hope that all my bloggy friends will participate.  I'm not doing this to gain extra Followers, but just as a little "thank you" for all the support you have shown me over the past year.  You know me, so you will know that it's going to be very easy to join in.  Just leave a comment and tell me that you want to be included in the Draw.  All the names will be put in a hat and either Eli or Ruby will pick out the winning name.  Easy peasy right?!  I will make the draw on Thursday, so it gives everyone a chance to enter.

As it's a Sunday, which is usually my Sunday Snaps day, I will just post one photo for you to look at today.


My glamorous daughter, and equally glamorous granddaughter, are arriving from France this afternoon, along with Alfred (their French Bulldog, for my newer Followers!).  We are always very excited to see them again, and they are here until the 2nd November, so it will be fun! My daughter is going to sit me down with my list of 'can't have foods'  and 'can have foods' so that we can work out some tasty recipes.  That way, she says that I won't just be concentrating on what I CAN'T have!!  Isn't she good to me - I am so blessed with my two beautiful daughters.

Take care my little bloggies, and I'll see you again soon.

Thursday 20 October 2011

I Need Your Help Please!

Hi everyone.  Hope everyone is well.  Eli hasn't been to pre-school this week, as he seems very tired and lethargic still.  He is his usual self for a couple of hours, then it's as if he is wiped out again, and he just flops down and chills for a while.  Next week is half term here in England, so that will be another week that he will have a chance to get really well again, before he goes back to pre-school.

Well, I have a little bit of news for you.  I was getting so fed up with coping with my skin and allergy problems, that, on the recommendation of a couple of friends, I went to see a Kineseologist this morning. The  Doctors haven't been able to help me over the past 40 years, so I felt I had nothing to lose, especially as all conventional medicine seems to be able to do is to keep giving me different creams, which haven't worked at all.

As soon as I heard that Kineseology is based on your Blood Group, I felt very hopeful, as I have always felt that my symptoms should be treated from within.  The Therapist was absolutely brilliant and she is convinced that she can help me.  It was just like a miracle!  She also feels that she can cure all my allergy problems, which means that I wouldn't have the anaphylactic problem to cope with.  I am feeling very positive at the moment, but, obviously, I realize that the proof of the pudding is in the eating!  It's not going to be an overnight thing, as this is something that I have suffered from for 40 years or more.

BUT, the one thing that really surprised me was when she asked me if I took any supplements (vitamins).  I told her that I had been taking a Vitamin E Capsule, an Evening Primrose Oil Capsule and a Cod Liver Oil Capsule for many, many years.  She was horrified, and said that I was putting far too much oil into my body, and that is why my blood is so thin.  It does make you wonder, doesn't it, because I thought that I was doing good by taking these vitamins.  I also have to take magnesium and zinc tablets.

Also, I have a list of foods that is good for me and I list of foods that I mustn't eat.  I think I could be losing a lot of weight here, because I am not allowed to have bread, AND I am not allowed to eat red or white potatoes, although I can eat sweet potatoes (I believe they are sometimes known as Yams).

Now here is where I am asking for your help my little bloggy friends!  I duly bought some sweet potatoes on the way home today, and cooked them mashed.  But I'm afraid that I didn't like them at all - is there a better way of cooking them, can you think of anything other than sweet potatoes that I could try.  Rice and Pasta wasn't mentioned on the list, so I will have to e-mail her about that.

The good thing is, that I can still drink wine, but not tea or coffee.  Just Green Tea with Mint or Nettle Tea with Peppermint.  I think it will be quite hard until I get used to it, but I just have to go with it in the hope of seeing an improvement.

Strangely enough, chocolate and biscuits wasn't mentioned at all on the list of foods, so I will have to ask her about that as well.  (Obviously, I am living in hope here. Hee Hee!!).

Sunday 16 October 2011

Sunday Snaps!

Here we are again - it's Sunday and time for a couple more of my Sunday Snaps.  I'm thinking that you're probably getting fed up with seeing photos of the little ones, so perhaps I had better look around for some different shots!

I have been looking after Ruby on a Friday now for quite a while,  and she absolutely loves the four horses that are in the next field at the moment.  Most of the day is spent with her nose pressed against the window in the conservatory, making horsey noises and waving at them.  Then she goes upstairs to watch them from the bedroom windows! I tell you, it's fun being a grandma!! Hee Hee!

Here she is making me a cup of tea

In the next one, can you see that her curls are finally starting to grow?!

The next one is of Eli (apologies to my facebook friends, as you will have seen this one recently!).  Couldn't you just eat him?!  My poor gorgeous boy was taken to hospital on Friday morning.  He was at pre-school and he had a fit, so they called the ambulance.  I saw him when I took Ruby home at about 4.30 p.m., and he was just flopped on the sofa, looking very pale, and hardly moving at all.  I do pray that he is going to be alright.  They checked him over and his temperature had gone sky high, so they think he might be coming down with something.  My daughter was talking to him in the ambulance, and she said that he was just talking gobbly-gook, so it wasn't very pleasant for her.

I'm just wondering if it was an infantile febrile convulsion, because my youngest daughter (Eli's mummy) had several of those when she was small and, come to think of it, she was probably around Eli's age when she had her first one.  Fortunately, it is something that they grow out of, but it is really frightening when it happens for the first time because it really does look as if they are having a fit of some kind.  

I have always been so very grateful for the good health of my little family, and I am hoping that this was just a blip.

I hope you're all enjoying your weekend my friends and I look forward to seeing you all again soon.  The weather has been very pleasant here again for the last few days - really quite warm.  This time next week, my daughter, granddaughter and little Alfred will be here again, visiting us from France, so we're all really looking forward to seeing them again.

Friday 14 October 2011


My wish for all my little bloggy friends is that they have happiness in their lives, so at the end of another week, here are a few images that I hope will make you HAPPY!

HappinesshappinessHappinessHappinessHappinessHappiness........happiness..happinesshappinessHappinessHappinesshappinesshappiness;*happiness =)HappinesshappinesshappinessHappinessHappiness :)happinessAll images from Pinterest

Have a lovely weekend my friends.  Hugs to you all.

Tuesday 11 October 2011

My Inspiration Has Got Up and GONE!!!

Hi my little bloggy friends.  Where have I been, you might ask yourself.  Well, I have been searching the inner recesses of my tiny little brain, desperately seeking some inspiration for an entertaining blog post!  Did I find anything lurking in those dark corners? I DID NOT!

In desperation, and as it will soon be Halloween and pumpkins are starting to appear in the shops, I thought I would share a recipe with you.  Now my daughters would tell you that if I'm mentioning the word recipe, then things really must be desperate!


Preparation Time : 10 Minutes.
Cooking Time : 25 Minutes.
Makes : 20

200g/7oz unsalted butter, softened.
175f/6oz unrefined light muscovado sugar.
2 large eggs
85g/3oz stem ginger in syrup
250g/9oz pumpkin, grated
200g/7oz plain flour
2 tsp baking powder
l and a half tsp allspice
1 and a half tsp ground ginger
quarter teaspoon ground clove
quarter teaspoon ground nutmeg


125g/4 and  a half ounces unsalted butter
A splash of Milk
125g/4 and a half oz full-fat cream cheese
225g/8oz icing sugar

1.  Preheat the oven to 190c/fan 170c/gas mark 5.  Line a muffin tin with cupcake or muffin cases.
Grate or finely chop the ginger.

2. Cream together the butter and sugar until the mixture is light and fluffy in appearance.  Beat the eggs in one at a time.  Add the stem ginger and the pumpkin to the mixture and stir until evenly blended.

3.  Sift in the flour, baking powder and the spices.  Fill the cupcake or muffin cases three quarters full with the mixture.

4.  Bake for 25 minutes or until firm to the touch.  Take out of the oven and transfer on to a cooling rack.  When the cakes are nearly cool, start making the icing.

5.  Cream together the butter, splash of milk and cream cheese.  Once blended, add the icing sugar and whisk together till smooth.  If you prefer a thicker icing, add more icing sugar.

6.  Spread some of the icing on top of your cupcakes using a spoon, or fill a piping bag and pipe a pretty swirl.  Top your cupcakes with sliced stem ginger, crystallised ginger, a sprinkling of cinnamon or anything else that you fancy.

These cupcakes are very moist and have a light, almost melt-in-the-mouth texture, and you'll find them difficult to leave alone!  The pumpkin makes them perfect for an autumn treat.


Friday 7 October 2011

I Feel Truly Spoilt!

Hi my little bloggy friends.  I have never been really lucky - oh, I have been well and truly blessed in my life, with loving parents, a husband who quietly is there for me and has never let me down, two beautiful and healthy daughters, two caring son-in-laws, three beautiful and healthy grandchildren whom I adore, the true gift of friendship and a warm and comfortable home, so, yes indeed, I count my blessings every day.

But luck is another thing. I'm talking about when you buy raffle tickets and enter competitions and things like that.  However, I do feel at the moment that luck surely is shining on me, as, here in bloggyland, such good things are happening for me.

It started with me winning the Mini Skirt Competition, and my prize from my lovely leetle friend Carol (facing50withhumour) arrived in the post a couple of days ago.  Thank you my friend!  Don't forget, if you haven't yet bought her first novel, Mini Skirts & Laughter Lines, you must do so, as it is every bit as funny as this lady's hilarious blog!!

Yesterday, I received a little gift in the post from my good friend Eva at  If you haven't met Eva before, please do go and visit her blog.  She will make you very welcome and I know that you will love her artwork.  Eva really is such a talented lady.  Her gift was a CD entitled A Different View by Paul F Xavier.  Paul is Eva's partner and this is a CD of 14 beautiful, relaxing tracks, all written and played by Paul.  Can you imagine just how much talent is going on in their house! Thank you Eva and Paul. (I have been listening to the CD as I typed this post, and it really is delightful).

About a week ago, my lovely friend Becca, over at Every Day Life, told me that I had won her first ever Weekend Giveaway.  Ta Da!!

Signed copy of CD Labor of Love by Scarlett Cherry.

 This is what Becca had to say about her giveaway -"Thisis by far one of my favorite Cd's to listen to and the best part is you don't have to be a mom to enjoy it you just have to know what it's like to love and everyone has had love or been loved at some point in their life. This CD is beautifully done Scarlett's voice is pure and songs are so diverse. From slow and soothing like "Angel" to upbeat and fun like "Fiecre mama" there is something for everyone. If you have had a child in your life at any point you can so relate to this songs even you Dads who double as mom and dad will enjoy this Cd as well as grandmas, aunts, moms to be even if all you do is care for children you will love this Cd. It is so amazing." So as you can imagine, I can't wait for that one to arrive!  Two beautiful new CD's to listen to, and I do love my music. 

Yesterday, the postman beat a path to my door with yet another little pressie, this time from my good friend Linda over at News from Italy.  Linda very kindly sent me a copy of a book that she had reviewed.  I said that I would love to read it and, hey presto, I am now reading and enjoying the book very much. It is called The Summer House by Christobel Kent and is based around Italy's Riviera Coast.  As I adore Italy, I know that I will love this particular read!  Thank you so much Linda.

But that, my dear friends, is not the end.  Yesterday, I received a note from another lovely bloggy friend, Maureen over at Daydream Living. Maureen has a delightful blog, filled with gorgeous photos of truly lovely things.  Maureen was also holding a giveaway, and I have won these lovely little French goodies.

I won't be entering any more giveaways for a while, because I think I have been quite lucky enough for the time being!

I hope you didn't mind me sharing these with you.  If you don't already know of the blogs I have mentioned in this post, please pop over and spread the love!

Take care until I see you again and I hope you all have a lovely, relaxing weekend wherever you are.  Bye for now!

Wednesday 5 October 2011

Just Had To Share This Post With You

Isn't this a gorgeous Buddha!  My friend Duncan takes some wonderful photos and he has written a post about The Ten Thousand Buddhas Hall.  I thought this was such an interesting place that I asked Duncan if I could share it with you.  Duncan writes about life in Kuantan, Malaysia, where he lives with his beautiful wife and two young daughters.

Please go over and enjoy his wonderful photos - I'm sure you won't be disappointed.

I will now share with you a few quotes from Buddha -

"Do not overrate what you have received, nor envy others.  He who envies others does not obtain peace of mind."

"You will not be punished for your anger, you will be punished by your anger."

"Peace comes from within.  Do not seek it without."

"Have compassion for all beings, rich and poor alike, each has their suffering.  Some suffer too much, others too little."

Tomorrow I will tell you about three lots of lovely goodies that I have just received in the post, from my very kind bloggy friends!

Monday 3 October 2011

Keep Calm for a Monday with Just a Bit of Fun

This past week has seen Paris Fashion Week over in France, and my daughter has been going along to see all the action.  On Saturday, my granddaughter went along as well, as she had such a good time there last year.  My newer followers might not know that several of the top French Magazines (Vogue & Elle & Harpers Bazaar)were taking her photo.  This is one of the photos from last year -

Here is a photo from this year.  I thought it was a really cool photo!
Look at those long legs!!

We've all seen those Posters that say Keep Calm and Carry On, well  I thought I would just have a bit of fun to start the week off and show you some variations on this theme.  I must admit, I never knew that so many versions of the saying were available! All images courtesy of Pinterest.

I hope you all have a lovely week, whatever you may have planned, and remember - KEEP CALM!!

Keep calmKeep Calm...keep calm
Keep CalmKeep calmKeep calm
Keep calmKeep calmKeep Calm
Keep Calm and...Keep Calm and LOVE :)Keep Calm
WineKeep Calm And Have A Cupcake print by Everyday is a Holiday
Keep Calm and Carry On