Friday, December 21, 2007

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

I'm stressed. Really stressed. Christmas does that to me.

You see, unlike most women (!!) I don't do multi-tasking. My brain is simply not wired up for that. I can only concentrate on one thing at a time and when I do I become completely engrossed in it until the job is finished. I can't concentrate in a room full of people or even with the radio on as even the slightest distraction makes it impossible for me to focus. Sometimes, if a task is linked up with other tasks I feel overwhelmed by it all and my stress levels go through the roof. My head feels like it's about to explode and I end up running away from it. This can apply to something very simple like housework. I can feel bogged down by everything that needs to be done and end up doing very little. It's like wading through treacle. Everything gets mixed up in my head and I can't pick one thing out at a time, it's like I don't have some necessary filter I need to ignore everything else. This makes it difficult for me in social situations, which is why I'm always the quiet one when there's a group conversation happening. I've always been like this but I used to cope ok until a few years ago when I was diagnosed with depression/anxiety. Several years on, several different antidepressants and a few years of psychotherapy later, and I've never regained that mechanism. Even though I am no longer depressed, I'm still surrounded by a bomb site which to me is a representation of how my life has fallen apart and I've never been able to pick up the pieces.

So, hopefully you can understand why Christmas becomes such a challenge for me. Too many things to think about and coordinate. Right now I just want to scream.

Last night it all became too much for me. Something went wrong with the dinner plans and caused friction between Mr Lisa and me, and I got in the car and drove to my sister's house. I didn't even go to talk, just being in a calm environment with sister hugs and kitty hugs on tap was all I needed. But the whole thing has left me feeling really, really low. I don't even think I can bring myself to go to theatre group rehearsals tonight (sorry guys). I feel like a sub-standard human being who will never be good enough for Mr Lisa and who can't even function properly in the world and that is quite devastating.

So I think today is going to be a day of misery, chocolate, Christmas shopping after work, more chocolate, followed by hot chocolate tonight accompanied by whinging about how fat I am due to overconsumption of chocolate.

So there.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

At least the gallery for October 2007. I've half done October 2006. I'll finish it probably tomorrow. Then more galleries to come.

Anyway, sorry for the delay, but let's face it, if you were that desperate to see photos you'd have gone off and googled someone else's galleries as there are loads of them out there!!

Watch out for more pictures being uploaded.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

It hasn't stopped raining for two days. The sky is almost black. It looks like we are in a perpetual twilight. I wear long skirts so going out means I get totally sodden round my ankles. Methinks platform boots are in order. That way I can walk on water. [guffaw]

I've still not done the Whitby report, mainly on account of the fact that I've been putting together a dedicated photo gallery site as I now have too many photos from all of the WGW's I've been to along with holiday and convention piccies, to name just a few. I anticipate having it finished anytime between this evening and Friday!! Depends on how much time I can devote to it.

Anyway, this weekend is going to be a busy one as far my social life goes. Friday night is Persecution night, and this Saturday plays host to the once a month cricket club do with Rock With Ramrod.

I forgot my cousin's birthday on Sunday. I have to post a belated card today and then it's her daughter's birthday next Sunday. Must remember to get a card for her as well.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Today has been a tiring day, not because of hard work, but from the sheer emotional strain that funerals and saying goodbye to loved ones seems to bring.

The service was lovely. Just as my uncle would have wanted it. So, that's it. Closure. Finality (is that even a word?). One day he was in our lives full of love and life, and suddenly he's gone, and there's a big empty space inside and at this moment I don't know how to fill it or even what to fill it with. I need sleep. I always need sleep when I've had an emotional time, it just seems to leave me feeling exhausted.

So, the plan for tomorrow: write the Whitby report and post the link to the photo album.

I'll miss you, Uncle George. I love you.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Ok, Whitby is well and truly over, but I have been rather tardy in getting those pictures uploaded and a report written. After three late nights plus the clocks going back an hour I seem to be suffering from an out-of-kilter body clock and have been too damned tired to do anything.

Still, I had planned on updating my blog this evening, but it will have to wait a bit longer.

Today I received a phone call from my mother to say there had been a terrible accident and my uncle (my dad's brother) had just died. It appears he fell out of the loft while storing stuff. He was as fit as a fiddle. Everyone is just in such shock. My dad has now lost both of his parents and both of his brothers. His brothers were both younger than him ... it isn't supposed to happen that way, surely?! I can't help but feel so angry. He was such a good bloke, a loving father. Didn't suffer from any illnesses. Strong as an ox. And then this happens. He has left behind a wife, three grown up children and a couple of grandchildren.

Right now I need a whisky. And a good cry. And an early night. The Whitby report can wait.

Friday, October 26, 2007

Right, I'm off to Whitby. I will not be back until Monday. Hang in there for the photos and a full report. As two of my friends who are going are Whitby virgins, this should be fun, if only to see the looks of utter astonishment on their faces. Yay!

Thursday, October 25, 2007

I can't help but feel a mixture of anger and despair. This is nothing short of persecution by backward narrow minded bigots who still think that sexuality and sexual identity is purely personal choice. My heart breaks to think of all the innocent people who have been put to death for simply being.

Turbulent Cleric: The cost of being lesbian, bay, bisexual or transgendered

via Of Course I Could Be Wrong

Monday, October 15, 2007

I like taking these tests because they are always wrong about me!! Hehe! This is not like me at all, yet I was truthful in my answers! [guffaw] Of course I wouldn't mind being like this at all, but I'm not unfortunately.

You are Strength

Courage, strength, fortitude. Power not arrested in the act of judgement, but passing on to further action, sometimes obstinacy.

This is a card of courage and energy. It represents both the Lion's hot, roaring energy, and the Maiden's steadfast will. The innocent Maiden is unafraid, undaunted, and indomitable. In some cards she opens the lion's mouth, in others she shuts it. Either way, she proves that inner strength is more powerful than raw physical strength. That forces can be controlled and used to score a victory is very close to the message of the Chariot, which might be why, in some decks, it is Justice that is card 8 instead of Strength. With strength you can control not only the situation, but yourself. It is a card about anger and impulse management, about creative answers, leadership and maintaining one's personal honor. It can also stand for a steadfast friend.

What Tarot Card are You?
Take the Test to Find Out.

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

I haven't posted in a while because there hasn't been much to say. I'm always too tired lately to post anything, because I've taken to partying at weekends, which is probably not a sensible or respectable way to behave at my age. However, Whitby Gothic Weekend is on the horizon and I will be reporting on it in due course. Watch this space as I intend to publish a lot of photos to my blog which should keep you all happy for all of five minutes.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Mingle2 Free Online Dating - Science Quiz

Monday, August 20, 2007

Watch it to the end and chortle accordingly. If you're not from the UK and have never seen Eastenders, don't waste your time.

via Pinksy

Monday, August 13, 2007

Sunday, August 12, 2007

I'm intrigued as it seems to be a bit different to most other speech recognition software. Wondering if anyone else has used it and can comment.

I intend to have a go sometime over the coming week. I'll let you know how I get on.

linesuperfollow.swf (application/x-shockwave-flash Object)

I've been playing with this for the past 10 minutes or so. I have no idea why it's so compelling.

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Yes, yes, I know what you're thinking ... where are the children? Am I right? Well let me tell you matey, you don't need kids around to do childish things, you just have to let go of your inhibitions every now and then. Eeee, we had fun. After I had recovered from the dizziness caused by hyperventilation we I drove home. LOL

Posted by Picasa

Sunday, July 29, 2007

What a weekend!! I am utterly shattered!

Friday night we went to see Neil's band play at the Art's Centre (it was also Kate's birthday). Drinking, late nights, etc.

Saturday, Neil's wedding (another Neil) evening reception, made our escape (there is only so much Agadoo and Birdy Song one can take before losing the will to live) and went to Legends night club (metal/rock/goth/emo/you-name-it) - drinking, dancing, even later night ... got home around 4 am.

Tonight, went to see Hayseed Dixie at the Academy. Drinking, dancing, singing, generally having a bloody fantastic time.

Home. Feeling totally shagged. Need. Sleep. Legs ache. Feet ache.

I'm getting way too old for all of this.

Friday, July 27, 2007

Your Friday Music: Harptallica

Woah! That's like ... surreal! I need to sit down.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Research on bread indicates that:

  1. More than 98 percent of convicted felons are bread users.
  2. Fully HALF of all children who grow up in bread-consuming households score below average on standardized tests.
  3. In the 18th century, when virtually all bread was baked in the home, the average life expectancy was less than 50 years; infant mortality rates were unacceptably high; many women died in childbirth; and diseases such as typhoid, yellow fever, and influenza ravaged whole nations.
  4. More than 90 percent of violent crimes are committed within 24 hours of eating bread.
  5. Bread is made from a substance called "dough." It has been proven that as little as one pound of dough can be used to suffocate a mouse. The average American eats more bread than that in one month!
  6. Primitive tribal societies that have no bread exhibit a low incidence of cancer, Alzheimer's, Parkinson's disease, and osteoporosis.
  7. Bread has been proven to be addictive. Subjects deprived of bread and given only water to eat begged for bread after as little as two days.
  8. Bread is often a "gateway" food item, leading the user to "harder" items such as butter, jelly, peanut butter, and even cold cuts.
  9. Bread has been proven to absorb water. Since the human body is more than 90 percent water, it follows that eating bread could lead to your body being taken over by this absorptive food product, turning you into a soggy, gooey bread-pudding person.
  10. Newborn babies can choke on bread.
  11. Bread is baked at temperatures as high as 400 degrees Fahrenheit! That kind of heat can kill an adult in less than one minute.
  12. Most American bread eaters are utterly unable to distinguish between significant scientific fact and meaningless statistical babbling.

In light of these frightening statistics, it has been proposed that the following bread restrictions be made:

  1. No sale of bread to minors.
  2. A nationwide "Just Say No To Toast" campaign, complete celebrity TV spots and bumper stickers.
  3. A 300 percent federal tax on all bread to pay for all the societal ills we might associate with bread.
  4. No animal or human images, nor any primary colors (which may appeal to children) may be used to promote bread usage.
  5. The establishment of "Bread-free" zones around schools.

This article was written by B.S. Wheatberry in a desert after consuming mass quantities of yeast bread then realizing his canteen was empty. (seriously :P )

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Theatre Group has been interesting of late. The past 3 weeks have been taken up with auditions and casting. Last Thursday we found out who had been cast and who had other production responsibilities. And yes, I got a part! Not a huge part, but I'm still chuffed for my first role. I play a policeman. Now, picture this ... Policeman 1 is well over 6 feet tall ... and then there's me. Policeman 2. Four feet 11 inches and almost as wide. The funny looking little sidekick. Put it this way, it's a pantomime, and if it gets a few laughs then I will have done my job. :-)

I'm also Head of Costumes which is a little scary, but I'm sure it will all come together. I posted a wanted notice on my local freecycle group on Friday evening and I've had a response already! I collect some donations on Monday so we'll see if there's anything suitable. If not for this time round then I can always stash it away for future productions. Ah ... remembered ... I can't collect on Monday as I have a wedding reception to go to ... wonder who that would be ... a couple from the group I seem to recall ... heh! Oh well, must email the fabric lady and let her know.

We went out to O'Neills Irish Bar in Durham last night to see a band - I think it was "Six Nowt" - but we didn't stay very long. Mr Lisa and I have both been poorly all week - since Monday morning.

Sunday, July 08, 2007

So, am I the only one who thought that the BBC's coverage of Live Earth was absolute tripe? Am I the only one who thought that the inane drivellings of Corinne Bailey Ray could have been better replaced with the pre-recordings of bands from around the world? Why did they have to cut from some of the best performances in the UK to show these pre-recordings? I got the distinct impression that director didn't like heavy rock bands and just because he didn't want to watch it he didn't think anyone else in the UK should, too, so decided to cut to bloody Crowded House in Oz. Not that Crowded House are bad, mind you, but it was in Oz. How many people in the UK watched hoping to see Metallica, or Spinal Tap, only to be shown a bit of it? Those empty time filling interviews between sets would have been a much better opportunity in my opinion. I noticed that there were no cuts from Madonna to show events elsewhere in the world!

Well done, BBC. You bollocksed it up again.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

I have to get me one of these purses ... truly a thing of beauty ... and liable to give my aunty a heart attack!

I can feel a trip to Hobbycraft coming on (for crochet hook and cotton) ...
... God help me, I've gone domestic!

Friday, June 22, 2007

pinksy » Blog Archive » Happy Hands Club

He he heh! Me being a geek, I just love this. Someone has way too much time on their hands (pun intended).

Sunday, June 17, 2007


We to the cricket club again last night. Despite the bin bags at the window again, it turned out to be a very enjoyable night. I consquently have an ear worm in the form of Rammstein which simply won't go away. Also I think I must have drank a bit too much because I'm still staggering about a bit, which probably means a hangover will kick in around 2pm. I'm ashamed. I'm off to eat raw coffee ...

Friday, June 15, 2007

Had a letter from the hospital yesterday. It was telling me that I had an appointment today at 11:50am for another breast scan. Now, first of all I think that was a bit short notice, because not everybody would be able to take time of work just like that, mostly I was confused as I had had a letter from the consultant after I had surgery telling me that the histology showed the lump was totally benign (fibroadenoma) and therefore treatment was finished and no follow ups were required.

So I phoned them this morning to check and it turned out that there hadn't been any communitcation between the mammography unit and the consultant's secretary since before I had even had the op! Pah! Grumble-grumble-it-wouldn't-have-happened-back-in-my-day-etc-etc!

Ok, rant over. As you were, folks.

The meeting went pretty well. Everyone had only good things to say about the play and we all learned a lot from the experience. In general, I think everybody wishes we had been able to run the show for longer, as the Saturday night performance was so much more polished and professional and we could have made even further improvements.

From what I've learned from the experience, the only real difference between professional shows and amateur shows is that amateurs don't get paid, and in my opinion they probably have more of a challenge to achieve such good results as they have such limited resources to work with.

We also watched a read through of the opening acts of two pantomimes that WTG members had submitted for the Christmas show. We have to read through the full scripts and vote next week. We then begin working on the winner of the vote straight away as there are costumes to make/procure, sets to build, and lighting rigs to plan! Woo hoo! Bring it on!

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

It's only Tuesday, and already I'm excited about Thursday's meeting at Theatre Group. We're having the Post Mortem of the play we did at the weekend, Blue Remembered Hills by Dennis Potter. And as this is all new to me, I'm dying to know what the outcome is.

Our next show will be the Christmas pantomime, so I'm guessing that scripts will be brandished by everybody wanting to try their hand at directing. Not me, though. To new. To scary. Maybe in a few years time. :-)

I'm still really tired. Glands in me neck swollen. Feeling achey. Didn't sleep all that well last night, either. Bugger.

Monday, June 11, 2007

Found a couple of interesting and, frankly, scary articles on sleep deprivation.

Scientists Finding Out What Losing Sleep Does to a Body

The Effects of Sleep Deprivation on Brain and Behavior

I am definitely having that snooze when I get home!

I don't know what's wrong with me today. I am so tired. I had a good night's sleep and yet I feel physically and mentally exhausted. My muscles ache and I can't stop yawning. I really just want to lie down and sleep the day away.

But I can't. I have eleven parcels so far to package and post (eBay sales) and then I have my therapy session this afternoon in town. Think I'll have a snooze when I get home.

Sunday, June 10, 2007

... I feel pretty rough today. I didn't have a drop of alcohol, and I made sure I drank plenty of water last night at the party, and yet I feel really rough.

I really need to get some proper sleep.

The final night was brilliant! What can I say? If I thought Friday's performance went well, it wasn't a patch on last night's. It was by far the best and everything went (almost) without a hitch. At the end, the cast came on for a final bow and called Kate, the director, up on stage. It was Kate's first time at directing and she did a brilliant job. Then us lot up in the light and sound room got a call to the stage, and all the rest of the Washington Theatre Group who weren't acting. Everyone was given a job, you see, including front of house, fire wardens, set designers/ builders, etc. It was nice for everyone to get recognition for their hard work as well, as none of it would be possible without them.

After the audience had left, Mr Lisa made a quick getaway and hid behind a pint of beer in the bar while we had a bit of a photoshoot, Peter made a lovely presentation of a framed poster from the production which we had all signed, and then all the sets had to be dismantled and put away and the stage cleaned up, etc.

Once all the hard work was over we went off to Cat's house for the celebrations. Had a great night, and came away feeling like the group are more family than anything. Such nice warm people, and I'm blessed to have been able to join the group. For the first time in my life I'm feeling like an empty space is being filled. (Ok, gushy moment over).

I'm shattered now. Got home around 3:45 am, so needless to say, I haven't been up and dressed for long! Just had my breakfast before I'm about to catch up on my email.

Saturday, June 09, 2007

Last night's performance went extremely well, and although I noticed several mistakes I'm pretty sure the audience didn't notice. They laughed in all the right places, and they gave a round of applause at the end, so I don't think we can expect more than that. :-) We made a bit of a boob up in the lighting room when we forgot to switch the banks over from one scene to two, so than when we put the red and orange flickering lights on behind the barn to simulate fire, all the lights started flashing like we were in a disco. Amazingly, the audience seemed to think it was all part of the show. LOL

As Cat said after the performance, "It always comes together on the night", and it did because believe me I really was nervous that things were going to go horribly wrong and we would be refunding everyone their ticket and programme costs. But then, I do tend to be a bit of a pessimist at times.

So, one or two more tweaks to the way the lights are patched and tonight's performance should go without a hitch. The actors were brilliant, so well done to them all. Dennis Potter's plays are not always the easiest to do, but they pulled it off beautifully. The costumes and makeup was really effective, especially with the character Peter coming back with a shiner after a fight in a previous scene. Much thanks to Nigel for being so patient with a complete noob.

My mother and her friend will be coming to see the show tonight, and I'm hoping some other friends will too. Mr Lisa enjoyed it and I think he's coming along tonight as well. After the show we will be going to Cat's house for the wrap party. :-) Woo Hoo!

Friday, June 08, 2007

I'm getting nervous. Some of you may already know that several months ago I joined the Washington Theatre Group - an amateur dramatics group based at Washington Arts Centre.

Tonight will be the first performance for me. I'm not acting this time around, but have been given the role of assistant lighting and sound technician. It's pretty scary to say the least. I mean, we didn't even finish the tech last week and last night we had to blag it as we did a straight run through dress rehearsal, but all in all it turned out ok. I just wish my stomach would settle. I'm finding it very nerve racking to say the least.

We're putting on a production of Dennis Potter's "Blue Remembered Hills". Set in 1943 the story centres around a group of seven year old children who are all played by adults. It is quite a dark tale of children playing innocently, but whose innocence comes crashing down in a most catastrophic way.

Needless to say, I will be rushing home after work to make sure I have my script with lighting cues, etc all straight and legible, eat a hastily prepared meal, then I will be rushing off to get there around 6pm to make sure everything is set up and working for the performance beginning at 7:30pm.

I have only one word to say right now ... Yeeaarrgh!


Go and visit the blog of Dave the Sod and watch the March of the Emperor.

All I can say is "Heh!"

Thursday, June 07, 2007

I made this template last night. Have previously used free templates from Caz, but wanted to try my hand at making my own.

I'm quite pleased with this for a first attempt. I think it may stay for a while.

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

I will be spending a little time playing around with my blog layout this evening, so apologies if it becomes unusable for a while.

Hang in there folks, I will return!

Friday, June 01, 2007

Received these in my email this morning, and I thought they deserved a special airing. Enjoy!

Unfortunately, I have no way of knowing who owns them or where they came from. If they're yours, please drop me a line and I'll remove them and replace them with a link to your website.

Mr Lisa has just pointed me to this review from the same venue.

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Well, last night was the final night of the bank holiday, so we went out again, this time to see a band that a couple of friends of ours are in. I have to say they are one of the best local club bands I know of, and I'm not just saying that because they're friends. If you get the chance to see them, don't miss out on the opportunity ... you will not regret it. I have seen them many times and they always put on a really good performance.

Monday, May 28, 2007

So, last night we went to the rock night which is on every month at Durham City Cricket Club.

It pretty bog standard stuff ... lots of 70s and 80s poodle hair music, but about halfway through they start to play the stuff I like, with thumping base beats and attitude. Pity it doesn't last long because they're back to fecking Foreigner and Europe and Journey for the rest of the night.

Anyway, once again I was playing with my new rinky dinky little camera and thought it was time to name and shame.

Come one guys, what are you thinking? You think it's a good idea to save money by having curtains made that don't even close and have no blackout lining, and then put bin bags up at the window to cut out the light? Have you any idea how stupid it makes you look? Do you think I really want to go to this kind of establishment again?!

So, Saturday evening we went over to O'Neill's Irish bar in Durham to see a band called Malarky. They were quite good as cover bands go. Place was full, got most people up dancing after a few pints of Guiness.

So, I got to playing with my new camera again. It has a high sensitivity setting so that you can take pictures in darkened situations without a flash. Handy if you want to capture the atmos including lighting effects, etc. Of course, you do lose a lot in quality, plus artificial lighting together with red pub walls made all the photos have a red cast, but I'm quite pleased with what can be achieved in such a dim place.

My friend, Rick

Rick & Mr Lisa's pints going down nicely

The band, Malarky

But then I noticed this cash machine ...

... and the onscreen message...

... then this ...

Er ... guys! You lot over at Scott Tod ... I think it was the guy that was buying pints for everyone in the pub!

Well, in case you hadn't worked it out, it was my birthday on Thursday. Mr Lisa bought me a nifty spiffy new camera which does just about everything except make the coffee, so off I went to try it out on Saturday.

My sis and I went along to this month's "Blow" event, but taking pictures while trying to blow bubbles off the Millennium Bridge is more difficult than it sounds. I spilled soapy bubble mixture down my top, dipped my hair in it, and almost dropped my camera in the River Tyne.

The Baltic Flour Mill - a wonderful place to visit if you're near Gateshead and fancy visiting an art exhibition. Those clouds were looking quite ominious before we'd even got there.

The Pitcher and Piano where we decided to have a drink before the event started.

And here we are, spreading bubbly happiness to all!

Just as we were finished "Blowing" the heavens opened and the camera was quickly packed up and put away. I got utterly drenched and was not a happy bunny by the time I got home. At least it was warm rain.

Can't remember if I've already blogged this, but it deserves a second airing nevertheless:

You will most likely regret following this link, but here it is anyway for any trainspotting type geeks out there:

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

I'm so tired I can hardly even think. I have so many things saved to blog too, but I just couldn't be arsed to do anything about it until now. My lovely little laptop died tragically in November last year and since then I've been using my ancient elastic-band-powered desktop PC to check my email and stuff, but it's so slow that I'd be nearly tearing my hair out if I tried to type up a blog entry.

Happily my super duper new turbo charged laptop is positively whizzing along as I type this, so you can now look forward to the humour of me trying to catch up! I have the Whitby Gothic Weekend to summarize and I just don't even know where to start with that one!

Maybe I'll feel better after a good night's sleep. In the meantime, here's a bit of fun over at Pinksy's blog. Made me laugh anyway.

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Thursday, April 05, 2007

Right, I'm off camping for the weekend. See you all when I get back.

Saturday, March 31, 2007

Surgery went well on Tuesday with no ill effects from the anaesthetic. Recovered quickly and was sent home within a couple of hours of waking up.

The incision is bigger than I had expected ... about 1.5 - 2 inches ... but as the lump was half an inch across itself and it was quite deep I suppose that's only to be expected. No visible sutures, just steristrips and a dressing.

Trouble is, I'm not exactly small in the boob department and the weight of it pulling on my wound hurts like hell, so I'm having to wear an industrial strength 3-hook bra to hoist them up and hold them still so that I can move around and do stuff. The painkillers I've been prescribed are pretty effective but have got me off me head, so no driving for me till I stop taking them.

I have about a three week wait till hear the histology results. As the biopsy itself proved innocent I'm not expecting anything different from the whole lump. The doctor said there was a 1 in 1,000 chance of it being nasty, so no worries there.

I'm now attempting to do some housework, but there are only so many jobs I can do which don't hurt. I've already cleaned the kitchen and the bathroom. I should really try to tackle the living room, now.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

I had my pre-op assessment yesterday morning. It went ok, nothing to worry about for me. Apart from being overweight, I'm fit and healthy, so everything is going ahead as planned.

So, the date for the op is 27th March - a week today! I am nervous, naturally, and I've told Mr Lisa exactly that. He has to be there for me ... not at work. I've told him in no uncertain terms that he has to get his priorities right and he has to be there to look after me at home. I don't want anyone else visiting me.

I'll be admitted at 8am, but I have absolutely no idea what time I will be discharged. I have to ring the hospital to find out what the procedure is.

I know I may sound like I'm making a big thing out out of this as I am only having a small lump removed, but it is a big thing to me. I will be putting my life in the hands of a stranger (the anaesthetist) who will administer a controlled poison in order to bring me to a state close the death. Then another stranger will be cutting into and invading my body. This is all, to me, utterly terrifying and I have to prepare myself mentally for the whole thing. On top of all of that, I still have a worry that the lump may not be innocent. I know I have had a biopsy and it was benign, but my consultant told me he would still want to have me back for another in May if I didn't opt for surgery, to make sure it hadn't changed. This, to me, means it could change, and may have already changed by the time it's removed, so I will have another wait after the surgery until I get the results back from pathology.

This is going to be a long week. I can tell.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

I have to have one of these for my 40th birthday!

With thanks to my big sis for the link.

Sunday, March 11, 2007

Being a sci-fi nerd with my geek compass pointing torchwards and tardiswards, is it any wonder I have to do this?

Happy 40th birthday Mr B!

[waves in the general direction of Cardiff]

Ok, geek moment over. As you were, folks.

Friday, March 09, 2007

Thought I'd just mention the dates I have ... earlier than expected, too.

Monday 19th March I go for a pre-operative assessment.

Tuesday 27th March I have surgery, providing the results of the 19th are all ok.

Yes, I'm nervous, who wouldn't be? And yes, I will be back to work the next day, and I will be back at the Theatre Group on the Thursday evening. Just give me drugs!! I need painkillers!

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

As the sister of a mad cat woman, I know this to be true. See what you think.

Cat Proximity

Via John Scalzi

Thursday, March 01, 2007

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Yay! Thanks to Bad Wolf One for highlighting this little gem. I so have to make this!

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Just a quick post to let you all know the results of my biopsy.

It's benign ... so far ... but some lumps can turn into something more sinister so ...

I have a couple of options: I can leave it be and go back in May to have another scan to see if it's changed, or I can have it removed and that will be it done with.

No doubt this will be surprising to some, but this hasn't been an easy decision. I don't like the thought of surgery even though I'm no stranger to it, and I'm all for taking the most non-invasive route where possible. However ...

... me, being the natural worrier that I am, will more than likely whittle away over the next few months wondering if everything is OK, and even if it does turn out to have not changed in the slightest, I'll probably still wonder if it could turn in the future.

For this reason I have decided to have it removed and be done with it. So what if I have a scar - I'll add it to my ever growing collection of scars. I will telephone the consultant's receptionist on Monday and let her know my decision.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Well, it's over. I had a mammogram, an ultrasound scan and a biopsy. I now have a swollen and bruised boob with a dressing on it, but I'll live! I get the result of the biopsy on Friday when I go back to see the consultant.

Right now I'm too tired to go into detail, suffice it to say it's been a long day and I'm glad it's over.

Nite, folks.

Friday, February 16, 2007

The appointments bureau phoned me yesterday afternoon. They said they had had a cancellation and asked if I wanted to bring my appointment forward to 21st, so I said yes. That means it's now next Wednesday. I'm pleased it's getting sorted so quickly. And I received my letter this morning with all the blurb about what to expect re: mammogram, fine needle aspirate, core biopsy, etc.

I feel remarkably calm about it all now.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Well, I have my appointment at the hospital. I had to ring up this morning to make the appointment, my GP having faxed a referral letter across to them yesterday.

It's for 28th February at 10:20 am. Now I have to wait 2 weeks in mental agony. LOL Why do we worry so much about stuff?

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Well, I've been trying since 8am but I finally got through to the doctor's surgery only to be told that there are no appointments left today and did I want to see a nurse practitioner? No thanks, I'd like to see a doctor. I know nurse practitioners are great but they're there for all the routine stuff like stomach upsets and sore throats, to take the pressure of the doctors so they can deal with the more serious stuff. Well, I consider this more serious stuff, so the duty doctor is going to ring me back and hopefully he'll ask me to go down today.

UPDATE: Just got back. Doctor says it feels like a harmless lump and that it may be related to my cold, but because we don't know how long it has been there he can't be sure, so I'm being referred to a specialist at the hospital in Durham.

I can't sleep. It's just gone midnight and I'm worried.

I went to bed an hour ago and was lying there doing my usual health checks (as you all should do, men and women) and found a lump in my left breast. Now, I know I mentioned in my last post that I've been feeling a bit grotty, and have a sore throat and swollen glands, so it may be related, but I'm still worried.

Needless to say, I'm off to the doc's tomorrow morning to get it checked out. Worried? Not half! I'll keep you posted.

I cannot stress enough how important it is that you all check yourselves for lumps and bumps on a regular basis, and that goes for you fellas as well. From what I hear testicular cancer is one of those usually diagnosed at a late stage because blokes either don't check themselves often enough (if at all) or are too embarrassed to see anyone about it. If you find any lump or bump that wasn't there before, don't waste time and get it seen to, pronto!

Saturday, February 10, 2007

I didn't go to Washington Theatre Group on Thursday as I wasn't well. I started feeling unwell last Friday with an aching neck and headache, but the aches and pains have migrated all over my body over the past week, and Thursday I had really sore ankles and hips. Weird, but I'm guessing it's some kind of 'flu.

Anyway, my Dad went along and met the people and it's a really small place with a tiny stage and auditorium, and a very small membership (around 15 whereas the People's Theatre had around 200!) He did say they were very friendly, though, and welcomed him with open arms. I'm thinking I may go along to that one to start with, till I get a feel for performing before I go along to the bigger more professional setup. It's all about self-confidence with me.

So, I'll be going to that one next Thursday. I'll let you know how I get on.

Friday, February 09, 2007

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Mr Lisa surprised me on Sunday by telling me he had arranged for me to have piano lessons! Yay! I was always quite good at music at school, but I was given very little choice as to which instruments I learned to play, so I was given cornet and clarinet and told I was to be in the school brass band. All I really wanted to play was piano, but I was told no, so in my spare time at home I taught myself guitar from books and by ear, because we didn't have a piano, but we did have a guitar! I'm sure there's some logic in there somewhere!

Anyway, on Tuesday I had my first lesson. It was great, not only because I get to do what I've wanted to do for about twenty five years but also because I know my teacher which makes it easier. He kept asking "Are you sure you've never played piano before?" because I basically skipped the first 10 pages of the book and went straight into the more complicated stuff. LOL

Well, that's that bit of news. The other is that, through a long period of personal change and revelation, the reasons for which I shall not go into here, I have decided to embark on a completely new path for me, and join an amateur dramatics group. Last night my Dad and I went up to the People's Theatre in Heaton for the new members night (which is held once a month) and got a tour of the theatre including backstage, lights, dressing rooms, wardrobe, etc, got to sit in on a couple of rehearsals for a while and were given an introduction to the many aspects of putting on a production. They also hold ACTS workshops every Tuesday, and have general auditions every week. I came away trembling with excitement! I wanted to join there and then, but my Dad is more level headed and suggested we check out the Washington Theatre Group as well. We're going there tonight. It's smaller though, and doesn't have the history that the People's Theatre has, or the same sized stage!

Anyway, I'll let you know what happens, and in the future if I'm in any productions and you're in the area, come and see!! LOL But be easy on me because this acting lark is new to me!

Thursday, February 01, 2007

... Michelle Collins, aka Cindy Beale from Eastenders, is making an appearance! Could be a good choice, I reckon!

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Can this be true? Actor John Simm, who plays DI Sam Tyler in the abso-bloody-lutely brilliant series "Life on Mars" is currently favourite to play The Master in Series 3 of Doctor Who. Excuse me while I have a major 'squee' moment.

Read the article here

Also appearing in Series 3 (from what I've heard) is Derek Jacobi (anyone remember I, Claudius?) and also (God help us) Timmy Mallet. The first person to say Wackaday gets hit over the head. With a pink inflatable mallet.

Monday, January 29, 2007

So, after the Doctor Who exhibition, we went over the road to the Millennium Centre. What a lovely arts centre! Stylish on the outside, stylish on the inside.

Also had my picture taken next to the water tower made famous by the Doctor Who spin off Torchwood. The Torchwood Hub is supposed to be directly beneath this tower under the streets of Cardiff. He he!

The restaurant on Mermaid Quay where the Doctor, Rose, Mickey and Jack all have breakfast.

Lots more photos were taken, but I won't bore you with geeky details.

So, after we'd done the tour of Cardiff Bay we went back to Aunty Kath's and had time to chat and eat something before we had to get ready to go to the theatre. My Mam had bought an extra ticket online for Aunty, so we had to be there early to collect it from the Box Office. I'm not sure she really wanted to go to see a pantomime, but we all had a great time.

The panto was superb. One cheesy gag after another, lots of innuendo, a man in drag and a pantomime cow! What more could you ask for?! John Barrowman was hilarious, and on several occasions could hardly carry on with the show he was laughing so hard. Aunty Kath thoroughly enjoyed it, and after it was over we went round to the stage door to see if we could get an autograph and a photo. Aunty Kath said she'd never done this before and she was just learning how to be a groupie at 61! Heh heh! She likes JB, though, and is a big Doctor Who and Torchwood fan. Incidentally, it's reassuring to know that I am not the only one in my family that cried bucketloads at the last two episodes of Torchwood ... there were a few tears shed from the Welsh Contingent, also.

So, we got to the front of the queue and got our programmes signed. "Kath with a K", Aunty Kath said, and then, "The pantomime was great, but I bet you're shattered now, bless you!" to which JB replied "Uh-huh". I could hardly stifle the laughter because she'd come over all maternal on him, and I was wondering if she was going to then offer him a cup of tea and some fluffy slippers! Mr Lisa, incidentally, had vanished. I think he's actually quite shy and was probably terrified in case I got him to come and pose in a picture with JB.

I think we were some of the last ones waiting for autographs, and if we'd hung around longer we could have had our pictures taken with him, but we were all cold and it was late, so we decided to get back home and open a bottle of wine. The show had finished at least half an hour later than usual as it was the last one and they wanted to send the whole thing off in style. So, this is the only picture I got of JB on the last night.

To finish off, here are some of my favourite bits from the show:

JB - "I've never danced with a fairy before!"

JB to a small child from the audience - "How are you?"
Small child - "Petrified"
JB - Laughs. "Well it's not that bad. There are only a thousand people watching you and we're going to sing a song in a bit. Where are you from?"
Small child - "Erm ..." Looks into the audience. "Mum, where am I from?"

JB, upon seeing Dame Trot appear on stage dressed in the Welsh flag and a black curly wig - "I always knew my Mom was Shirley Bassey!"

So, as you can no doubt guess, I'm back home. And what a jolly good time we had!

We arrived at my Aunty's in Caerphilly around 10:30pm, and as we hadn't eaten since the afternoon, we had some soup and a roll and sat and drank wine while we chatted and caught up on family gossip. It must have been around 1am when we finally went to bed.

Needless to say I didn't get up bright and early the next morning which what I had planned to do. I had a list of places I wanted to visit and thought it was going to take up my whole day, but it all turned out fine. I just made sure I saw the best places first.

So, after breakfast, off we toddled to the Red Dragon Centre in Cardiff to see the Doctor Who exhibition. As we walked up to the entrance I'm guessing my face must have been a picture, because Mr Lisa said "the words 'kid' and 'sweet shop' come to mind"! It was certainly a visual feast, even if it was quite a small exhibition. Very enjoyable. Here is a small selection of photos I took:

Mr Lisa and an Auton

The Trinny droid

The Face of Bo

Cassandra, the last human

Me and K9. Affirmative!

A Clockwork Droid

Me and a Dalek and a Cyberman

Mr Lisa and an Ood

Are you bored yet? There is more to come. Watch this space.

Friday, January 26, 2007

Right, this will be my last entry until Monday as I'm switching off the pooter and getting my stuff ready to leave at 4pm. As we will be returning on Sunday evening and going more or less straight to my parent's house for dinner I'm not even going to try to make time to write an entry until Monday at the earliest, but hopefully I will have lots of pictures to upload, so watch this space.

Right you Taffs ... be prepared to be invaded by the Geordie contingent! ;-) There's lovely, boyo! Haway the lads. Er, etc ...

Thursday, January 25, 2007

I have to admit I'm getting pretty excited now. Yesterday I visited my parents who had just had a weekend in Paris, so they didn't know about my plans to go to Caerphilly/Cardiff tomorrow. I told them about the panto and said it would have been nice if I had three tickets, then I could take my aunty who we'll be staying with. I said I'd already bought a "just because" gift to take down with me ... rose and violet creams from Hotel Chocolat and a bottle of pink champagne ... so my Mum offered to buy an extra ticket! We did it online there and then and have to pick it up from the box office before the performance, and it's for a seat in the row behind us, so not too far away. It will lovely having my aunty coming with us!

So, Saturday ... the plan is to go out early to start exploring all the redevloped areas of Cardiff (eg the Bay area was all seedy docklands when I was last there over twenty years ago) and to visit the Doctor Who exhibition, then home to eat, shower and change and back to the Theatre for the show.

So, a busy weekend ahead of me. Here's hoping that JB is over his throat infection and able to deliver the goods for the final performance. :-) [major squee]

Sunday, January 21, 2007

I was making a list of Dr Who related places to visit while I'm in Cardiff, and look what I found! A Doctor Who exhibition which is on currently at the Red Dragon Centre! Wahaay!

Friday, January 19, 2007

Mr Lisa is going with me. Yay! That means no coaches, we can go in the car. Also, he wants to go on Friday instead of Saturday, which means that we can go exploring round Cardiff. I know I'm such a nerdy geek, but I want to go and see some Doctor Who/Torchwood film locations while I'm there.


I never thought that I would ever begin a blog entry by talking about the weather, yet here I am, breaking with tradition by asking what the weather is like in your neck of the woods.

So ... what's the weather like in your neck of the woods?

It's been really freaky here. Yesterday we had torrential rainstorms and the sky was so do dark we were working in twilight for much of the morning. Then, in the afternoon it stopped all of a sudden and the sun came out. This is was obviously intended to lull us into a false sense of security because no sooner had our spirits started to lift and the winds came. Gale force winds which knocked you off your feet and made a hell of a mess of your hair.

Seems they had blown over from the west where some folks have died in accidents caused by hurricane-strength winds. All very scary stuff and what the hell is happening with our weather anyway? Who did we give permission to mess with our weather? How dare they?

Wherever you are and whatever you do, if possible stay indoors and stay safe.

On a lighter note I have in my possession a pair of tickets for the pantomime, Jack and the Beanstalk, in Cardiff for the very last performance on 27th January which is next Saturday. As John Barrowman is in it, and he's my latest obsession, I really really want to go but I'm a bit strapped for cash. Driving all the way there is going to be just too expensive - I reckon £80+ in petrol alone, so I will have to get the coach if it is only going to be me travelling down. Thankfully, I have a lovely aunty in Caerphilly who will put me up, so no overnight hotel bills to fork out for. However, Mr Lisa hasn't decided whether he wants to go or not, and if he isn't going then I need to book a coach ticket and I have to do that at least 7 days beforehand, which kind of means I have to do it today, and he won't make a bloody decision! Yeeaargh! I get the feeling he's deliberately stringing me along as he knows I like John Barrowman and would love to see him live in the panto.

Bloody men!


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