Thursday, 27 September 2007

most unusual activity....

I've had 2 anonymous comments....yes, 2. How does that happen? Have I become an online community? I'm amazed. I expect they're from my dear friends S & L. Or, are they?

Anyway, dear posters....answers to your questions

Q: What am I going to do with my craft projects?
A: Who knows?! I now have 4 teacosies, some cushion covers and several chunky scarves hanging about the house. If I was brave enough, I'd sell them. I expect they'll become presents for craft phobic friends and rellies. That'll teach them.....If I was clever enough, I'd take pictures of them and put them on my blog wouldn't I?!
Q: Why don't I try adios?
A: I've had some in my cupboard for years. I'm a bit worried they'll make me hyper. I'll take some today and let you know how I get on.

Thanks for getting in touch.

3 weeks...

I haven't blogged for a week. This is because I am retired. Retirement does not mean that you have time to sit and eat bonbons all day. Oh no. My retirement means buzzing about like a headless bluebottle doing too many things at once.

I now have multi-columned lists on the go. I keep telling myself that after the weekend it will be fine. I won't bang on about the details. Like listening to someone else's dreams, hearing about how someone else's busyness is just dull.

Projectforty is not going well at all. Every morning I promise myself I'll do all the things I'm supposed to be doing. I drink the water, stretch a bit, avoid exercise all day. My skin has gone crepey. I've started to realise that no matter how much I say I want to do all the fit, healthy things, I actually don't really care about that as much as I care about having a good time, messing about with my friends and enjoying all the nonsense that comes with family life.

If I wanted to look as smart and groomed as I think I ought to try and look, perhaps I would actually do it. Instead I talk about it, make myself feel pressured about the way I look and carry on doing all the things I enjoy doing, hoping that my glorious transformation will take place by itself.

Yes, I am disappointed I haven't lost 2 stone and started to look like all those long-legged gorgeous creatures. Then again, since I started I've had a blast. I've become a student, done loads of writing, been much nicer to G and the kids, seen my friends more, organised 3 parties and generally entertained myself very nicely thank you.

I just need to get some grooming booked now. I hear eyebrow shaping can take off 10 years and half a stone!

Thursday, 20 September 2007

a month to go....

I'm on the downhill stretch. The weight is slowly going again. I'm exercising a little but not nearly enough. I'm waking up before 5am every day and have completely forgotten that I ever worked!

Back to college today for some more drawing. I think we've got a different tutor today. I've seen her around, she looks exactly like a college art teacher should look like - very slim, lots of long curly hair, interestingly embroidered skirts. I think I'll stay until lunchtime. I've got sewing at school this afternoon and if I don't go to the supermarket today I suspect we'll all have scurvy by the weekend.

I was housebound yesterday which was actually very pleasant. We had to call the dishwasher man out as the person in charge of the dishwasher (not me) had inadvertantly managed to block it. DM came, he pulled the offending machine out of its slot, shook the pipes around a bit and switched it on, at which point it started working. I enjoyed writing the cheque for the call out charge.

As I couldn't go anywhere my friends came to me. We drank pots of tea and coffee and generally faffed about being crafty. 3 tea cosies and a pincushion later I felt very productive. I now have several projects scattered around the kitchen, shouting 'finish me' as I walk by.

Tuesday, 18 September 2007

spinning plates

I thought retirement was meant to be relaxing.

I thought finishing work would bring an aura of calm and tranquility to my whole being.

I thought days filled with art and creativity would make me serene and zen-like.


Perhaps I would be feeling zen-like if I wasn't involved in the rest of my life. I didn't realise that I've managed to stuff too much into too few days. I thought it was just work that took up my time, not the kids, the husband, the school, the governors, the failing exercise regime, the garden, the allotment, the cooking and now the washing up (dishwasher conked out yesterday) AND all the other things I want to do like the writing, the knitting, the sewing, the swimming, the going out and the fun.

I know I'm nearly 40 and I should know better but IT'S JUST NOT FAIR! I want to float through my days not career through them at 50 miles an hour.

I am, however, very conscious that I'm having a blast. I drew a skeleton, a ribcage and a sheep's skull yesterday and despite never having drawn for longer than 10 minutes in my life, lasted all day and was quite pleased with the results. Some of my fellow students' work was just mind-blowing but I was satisfied with my efforts. I'm sure this is not a valid artistic response and I'm supposed to be all consumed and feel the force or something but my 3 drawings looked like what they were. An accomplishment in my eyes.

Today, I'm going to a school finance course. I know, from one extreme to the other. It's in a lovely setting but they try to hide the biscuits at coffee time which I think is a little unkind.

I promise, I will try to exercise at some point today...went swimming last night and swallowed half the pool. I'm still not over the trauma.

Saturday, 15 September 2007

almost a month to go...

Another early morning. Maybe I've got to that age when a woman needs less sleep? Maybe I'm morphing into Mrs T with her legenday 4 hours a night? I get annoyed waking up so early but it's wonderfully quiet and when I tidy things up, they stay tidy until breakfast time.

I am looking forward to my 2 weeks of drawing at college - not. I tried to draw a sempivirum and my daughter yesterday. They looked very similar by the time I'd added a little bit of shading. This is not a good sign.

I MUST mow the allotment today. And I MUST do the ironing. I'm sure there'll be some sport on the telly wich will force me out of the house. J has a disco swimming party this afternoon. I can't understand how you can have a disco in these circumstances. Kids parties are excruciating enough without having to spend the entire time in your swimmers. He seems to be quite excited though. Thank god there aren't many opportunities in my life for such an activity.

I had lots of excitement on the scales yesterday - 2lbs gone, just like that. But, dear reader, they're back. How does that happen? I'd been worried about the stability of my weight for a week, celebrated a little shift and then bam, back again. Oh well, at least I made a lovely lino cut yesterday.

Am I what I eat or what I do?

Thursday, 13 September 2007

time flying

The weight is shifting again. Now I'm worried it's because I've missed my exercise for a couple of days. I hunted out my old Lorraine Kelly video on Monday night! It's the only fitness video I've ever managed to watch repeatedly, despite its annoying soundtrack. I say repeatedly, what I mean is, more than once when I'm on a health kick.

G's been away 2 nights so the kids have been going to bed early! They're exhausted with going back to school and the relentless sporting activity they seem to be involved with. How did I end up with such movers and shakers. I loathed sport as a child. Sport always involved getting cold or wet or both and then having to get wet again in bacteria smeared showers. Hideous.

I can't watch it now either. I see no joy in someone being able to run a bit faster or for a bit longer and the older I get, the more pointless it seems. I couldn't be less interested in the so-called sporting glory of rugby, football and cricket on all at the same time. I'm getting a lot of craft done.

I'm very tolerant though. I don't mind other people watching it. I have to. I have no problem with people taking part in sport, I just don't see why people not doing it have to watch it. I'm the same with wildlife. I love nature, do my recycling, cry when I see lone polar bears on the telly but I really can't understand why some people want to climb aboard several modes of transport and follow creatures around taking holiday snaps. Just leave the poor furry, crawly things alone. They'd have more babies, they wouldn't breathe in the carbon monoxide from the exhausts. Just let the poor we creatures be.

Anyway...back to p40. I'm keeping an eye on all the things I'm supposed to be and am taking healthy salads to college now and feeling very virtuous with my cottage cheese salad and pieces of fruit.

God I wish I was 40 so I don't have to think about it anymore! I'm going to start saying I'm nearly 50 so people think I'm fabulously gorgeous at my age.....

Sunday, 9 September 2007

40 days to 40 years

It's definitely crunch time now. It's now 40 days away - the final countdown - and the fat lady will be singing because I've booked a disco with a karaoke for the party!

On the upside - I feel great. I'm doing what I want to do with my days, I'm having a lot of fun and feel energised. My body's starting to look better.

On the downside - the bits of me that need shifting aren't shifting as quickly as I'd like them to. I'm eating better, I'm not grazing so much, I've conquered my addiction to custard creams. I'm doing the 5 a day thing most days.

There are parts of me that are benefiting from the exercise. My waist is reappearing and my posture's better. My weight loss, however, has slowed down dramatically. Is this the muscle factor - where it weighs more than fat? I hope so.

I do feel I've changed my mindset over the last couple of months though. I feel like I'm being a little kinder to myself and instead of being so self-critical, I've started to treat myself like I try to treat my friends. I wouldn't talk to anyone like I talk to myself. If I gain nothing else from projectforty, I think that's a change for the better.

Right - am off for a twilight village stomp. Nighty night.

Thursday, 6 September 2007

early bird

Have been up since 5am. I'm on a bit of a roll. I've sorted out my stuff for college, numbers for calls to make at lunchtime, done directions for my party invitations and printed out leaflets for school's dancing lessons. I think I might be overdoing it.

I was hoping to do a walk this morning but am going to go to college instead and get inspired again. I hope today will be as good as Tuesday.

Did my stomp around the village yesterday morning and went swimming in the evening. I'm very conscious that I've crammed all sorts of things into the next few weeks and time will be at a premium. It does feel good though. It feels like I'm doing the right thing. I'm going to end up sounding like someone on Oprah in a minute.

I had a lovely surprise too yesterday. I've been sending off freebie coupons from some very special magazines I've been buying. Like my true weight, I can't reveal the titles. The result? A free watercolour box from an art supplier full of paints, brushes and boards. This creativity lark must be the right path.

Wednesday, 5 September 2007

and relaxxxxxxx....

Went to college for the first time yesterday. It was wonderful. I had spent Monday at a finance course for school governors and yesterday spent 6 hours, creating panels with a huge array of different materials and textures. It was very relaxed and just joyful. There was no pressure, it was overwhelmingly inspiring. It has already made me start to look at ordinary things in the most extraordinary way.

There are about 15 of us in our group, a fantastic (so far) tutor and, for me, the almost endless possibility of learning. I have to spend 2 weeks drawing, more than I've spent in my entire lifetime to date and I can just feel that the next few months are going to be stuffed full of new things and experiences. We all know I like 'new'.

I've got my exercise routine sorted as well and even though I'm not sure the weight is changing, the body is. I am, however, going to bed at about half nine every night as I'm so knackered after running around and trying to be fit!

Got a visitor, got to go...more later

Monday, 3 September 2007

back to school

I knew something was missing from my life. I haven't blogged for almost a week.

I've been a little busy. I made my last visit to Westbury (I think) and saw some wonderful films made by some young people there. A good end to my contract. I've been allotmenting which I'm sure is why my neck hurts. Have had a massive clearout. Have written my invitations. Have tried to tidy up my office/workroom. And have tried to get organised for this week.

I love this time of year. It's my new year and when I get energised. January loathes me. I love the dark nights and the winteriness of it but I can't bear that enforced resolution making ethos. I particularly loathe the way magazines change colour before Christmas has even happened. December's issues (out in November) are replete with gold, silver and luxury. January's issues (out December 1st) are pale blue, austere and clear, telling us to detox and cleanse before we've even got started.

September is the best time to start new things. It's still warm enough to get out and about. There are pencil cases and stationery in abundance in the high street and the kids go back to school which means all their mums can have a sit and a think and move about the place without being asked for ice cream.


PS: Had the haircut, appointments are made, regular bouncing is incorporated into my lifestyle.