Tuesday 30 June 2015

Elvis Rides Again

Well last night I had the pleasure of Elvis...we'll sort of . my daughters early birthday present to me was a couple of tickets for The elvis years at The Drill Hall Lincoln, what can I say, it was a great cheesy night out, shut your eyes and it was Elvis.  I grew up with my aunts and cousins dancing away to Elvis with there old Dansette they could all Rock n Roll with the best of them . So it made me smile and theyre in short supply these days .

Ive picked a bonny few days to be grounded due to lack of fuel...its a wee bit scorchio outside but its nice and breezy so its bearable . started washing all the duvets they dry well on the grass in this weather , may tackle curtains tomorrow .
Still a good store cupboard full from the Sainsburys vouchers , so I need to plan this months shop carefully , daft thing to run out of is eggs and ive just processed tons of onions and carrots into the freezer , they were pennies in the co-op and it means that Mr Bah Humbug can cook a little , he cant chop veg but he can tip stuff into the slow cooker so that "when" I get a better job ,I may come home to warm food come winter ..lol
Got talking to one of the neighbours this morning , our little village shop and post office is shutting in July . He only has a post office bank account , he pays his bills there gets his groceries there like a great many in the village . Hes 86 and doesnt drive , never learned , lived in the village all his life . So the oldies sent a letter off to the post office asking what provision was being made for them . Got one back saying that they must bank online and pay their bills by direct debate , so thats a big help . The post office in the next village is also going . So we wont have a bank within 15 miles , nearest Post Office will be a 10 mile round trip , now to those overseas that maybe doesnt seem far but on the budget most people live on round here its not a viable pop out everyday , this will impact my ebay big time , so i will have to look at its viability in the long term . We dont have a bus service except for the school bus and thats only in term time.
Tea tonight , reduced sandwich steak to stretch to feed 5 , garden salad , last of the potatoes fried , maybe some cous cous or bulger wheat . Had an ace pudding idea last night , out of date cheapy milkshake makes amazing custard , who'd have thought ? so when i spot milkshake now i will stock up , it can always be frozen

Wednesday 24 June 2015

Last Day of Freedom

Yesterday was my  my final day of freedom because the cars MOT runs out tomorrow , i may be able to put it back on the road in a month or so but im not holding my breath , it needs at the least four tyres and a front spring plus the cost of the MOT , labour is cheap it involves sons and Mr Bah Humbug supervising but its still going to be over £300
So its down to one vehicle , this will cause immense problems , mainly because this miserable lot wont co operate . plus i wont get out except for work without Mr Bah Humbug who doesnt think I should do without my lunch so I can thrift shop or go anywhere without writing down where ive been and what mileage im doing , he doesnt like me driving his van , which im perfectly capable of doing ..grrrr.
So yesterday my son said lets stop at the War Graves cemetary a couple of villages away , which to my inner goth sounded like just the thing .
There dozens of these cemetery's around Lincolnshire they dont call it bomber county for nothing , they are all maintained by the Commonwealth War Grave Commission , they are beautiful places on a sunny June afternoon . This one at Scopwich has a heavy Canadian RAF body count though there was also English, New Zealand and Americans .

My son was amazed at how old they all were, most appeared to be 22 and under .

There are even a few German Graves from a bomber shot down after bombing Lincoln , some have small vases of flowers , so relatives from overseas must visit .

Tuesday 23 June 2015

Post Wedding

A Great time was had by all at the wedding event of the year , the bride looked amazing, very gothic , all the kids behaved , no blood was shed or animals injured throughout the whole proceedings . Highlights the busker that the bride had accosted to use as a wedding singer he was brilliant. Matty Fletcher , just posted him , doing the first song , couldnt figure out how to pop it within this post...lol
The Food was amazing it was a ploughmans lunch theme and then an evening buffet , we came home laden up with stuff .
Mr Bah Humbug is horrified that he fluffed his speech six words and he froze, but he had a good time , hobbled through the day and is now suffering terribly but in a good cause .
Best laughs of the weekend the deaf aunty who shouted all the time and wasnt very tactful, every wedding should have one!!!
We babysat the teenagers , they had quite a bit to drink on the night so when we got them home they wanted a party , funnily enough they went straight to bed when I informed them that Mr Bah Humbug nude sleepwalks and that anyone who was sick would be left in the recovery position stuck hair side down in their leavings .
So a great weekend was had  and i hope they live happy ever after ............

matty fletcher - chasing cars

Saturday 20 June 2015

Going To The Chapel

Well actually were off to Mr Bah Humbugs best mates wedding, hes the Best Man , Im not a big occasion person plus with the current budget its been a little challenging . My sense of the ridiculous just seems to kick in , its the full penguin suited job and to say my other half looks like Jimmy Crankie is an understatement , his mates 6ft plus and hes 5ft 4 . They decided to leave the suit final fittings till last weekend only to find the shop they ordered them from had closed and they would have to go to Nottingham to pick them up ..bleedin men ..so last week we had a trip to Nottingham in the pouring rain on East Midlands Trains , pleasantly surprised how well this went with my hobbling other half, they have a station in the next village , so we are debating getting a rail card , you do get a reduction if your disabled as well , it might get us out a bit more when we are rich..lol
Anyway of course there had to be a problem with his suit it had the arms for a gorilla and his waistcoat didnt fit , could we come back on Monday if they could source another size ? Im not sure if ive developed an even worse death stare than usual , but they sent it to another branch in the group at Newark . So we toddled there and was pleasantly surprised that Newark is quite nice from a shopping perspective , if we'd had the time we would have stayed for the day , there looks to be an awful lot of thrift shops..lol not just the big chain ones either .
Just to give me another giggle Mr Bah Humbug announced he was off to the barbers , now hes not got a lot of hair and I usually just mow him with the clippers . So he potters off yesterday having not got there for the last 2 weeks like he said he would , the lady barber looks at me when he says just make him look respectable for a wedding and says ...number 3 allover then ..lol
Hes most miffed that hes going bald and not even a drastic comb over could cure the situation plus hes now got a nice inch wide white stripe all the way round . I decided to just not say a thing at this point , but the kids have been chuckling behind his back and he keeps asking why .
One good thing is that ive not had to buy anything new , they are all well aware that i favour Elvira the witch in the fashion stakes , so it was a choice of black, black or back , ive even cleaned my Doc Martens specially , I might need them for the first clever clogs who asks me if im Mr Bah Humbugs mother , bless him I wish hed go grey instead of bald...lol
Wish me luck folks , a nice normal thrift post is looming on the horizon ...

Tuesday 16 June 2015

Jobs For The Over 50s, th

Now I've been job hunting for a few months and I'm finding it hard work.? here's a little tale ....
Spotted a job working with troubled teens , through an agency as they always are these days. SO I banged off a CV and got a reply straight away , did a phone interview, then the little boy at the agency said you just need to forward £50 for your enhanced Criminal check, now I thought about this , then I twigged, they're basically scamming you because to actually get the job you would have to do a Health and Safety course , First Aid course, Manual Handling course all through them for which you have to pay . Asked around and found that this is why nobody works in the caring professions , why they are at every jobs fair screaming for staff and why there's hundreds of vacancies on the job center sites. Now this is even before they forward your application to the employer.  So you probably won't get it anyway at which point you will have forked out £300 for nothing . The criminal check can only be used once , so for every job applied for that's another £50 . So if your on Jobseeker's Allowance you can't apply for these jobs because they won't fund anything till you actually have the job.
I've also found out I'm virtually unemployable because I don't have a checkable 10 year work history , because I'm self employed and the company I subcontract from will not provide references for anyone ....guess I will be joining the Polish at the chicken factory in September..lol

Thursday 11 June 2015

Benefits Land...Twice in one week!!!

Well its been a fun week , Mr Bah Humbug has been pleasently surprised by the Job Centers reaction to Mondays debacle , no sanction , Lagat Training are in bother it seems they are supposed to be providing 6 man courses for the differently abled and they have just been lumping the differently abled in with everyone else and charging the Job Center for  seperate courses.  Plus they failed miserably in the duty of care aspects , no safety drill etc , its a six man course for a reason, to enable staff to cripple ratio in the event of an emergency . When they questioned those who had attended the course previously , it would seem this has been happening for a while but nobody has had the guts to stand there ground and put in a complaint due to the fear of sanction .
Let me explain sanction to you , this is when they stop all your payments for non compliance to Job Center requests , first time its for weeks , second time for months third time if you havent starved to death it can be for years . You can get an emergency payment of £30 something to live on , they wont tell you this though , you must ask for it , and if you want to appeal a descision it takes months , Everybody gets sanctioned , this makes it appear in government figures that people are getting jobs , the excuses are trivial for sanction , not attending courses or interviews is a favourite , usually because they send all the requests by second class mail that takes forever and will arrive the day after the course  , the staff have to meet quotas for sanctions so it makes for a pretty toxic combination .
Anyway to cut a long rambling story short , Mr Bah Humbug has run out of courses for the present , hes gutted as he likes the social aspect of getting out and meeting people , he would like to go back to college in September , but because hes on JSA and not ESA theres no funding available .
We will not at the present time go into the realms of the new electronic sign in procedure that is going to work particularly well for those who cant hold a pen...lol
I personally think Mr Bah Humbug should offer up his services as a government spy for all the wretched training agencies they employ , he would really tell them the truth

Monday 8 June 2015

Benefits Land ..Altogether now

Well lets bang our heads against a brick wall just for the fun of it , yet again Mr Bah Humbug has been rejected on appeal for ESA , hes not had a good day today at all . The Job Center sent him on a work course to the world of Lagat Training , I had to drop him at the door this morning , he goes in to find hes late , the course starts at 9.30 despite him having a letter stating 10, this is the same letter everyone has been sent by the Job Center and instead of 4 hours a day it is now 7 1/2 hours a day sat in a classroom writing and computing , apparently he should have attended in a shirt tie and suit , nobody told anyone this . Hes also now classed as illiterate because hes just had a wrist operation so cant write due to the tremors and lack of feeling in his hand . There was far to many people to fit in the room and he wouldnt have been able to get up and down as he has to pretty constantly , they also had those weird cocktail bar stools which none of the disabled people attending would have been able to sit at , they moved them to another room once he complained,  but once again you couldnt stand up ,your seats were back to the wall with no room to pass them . So he complained and pointed out he couldnt sit for 7 1/2 hours and that as he hadnt been told that he would be their that long how could he get lunch ? Have a sandwich delivered perhaps ? Also in the event of a fire alarm who would help the three cripples out of the room ?  He cant walk any distance and its getting worse by the day . They decided the course was unsuitable for him and rang the Job Centre who wanted to see him immediately , they told him to just pop up the road and speak to them direct ...err he cant walk that far , so he had to ring me to come from work and fetch him , to take him there . Now he has attended many courses but they got him on a bad day when he was in militant cripple mode , sorry Lagat Training that just isnt good enough by anyones standards and I dont see why the disabled should be sanctioned for poor planning by the Job Centre .
They actually were quite helpful at the Job Centre  and we got seen quite quickly , he had to fill in a form , well I did stating why he hadnt been on the course because its a mandatory sanction of benefits for non attendance , so that goes off to a decision maker to see if they will sanction him ...OHM.....
Now to the fun bit his ESA appeal makes for hilarious reading , hes gone to scoring nil points to scoring 9 points for mobility , so they admit his walking is bad at last , this is rather hard to miss , but once again he gets penalised for not using a walking aid , errrr if you cant hold a stick how do you use one , and crutches are a no brainer with plates and pins holding the top of your spine together , so he walks a bit like a drunken sailor or as he charmingly puts it ,  like i have a broomstick up my butt , it aint pretty , its damned painful and its only getting worse . Now he also got penalised for having a house with stairs in , im sorry but if youre recently disabled they dont just say heres your bungalow . In fact there no help until you get your PIP assessment that has taken 5 months and we have just got the number to request the forms , for an Occupational Health Visit . The government has just been hauled through the courts for taking 10 months to sort out some PIP assessments , but once again even if your judged to need a stairlift or adapted bath etc . it can be a very long wait  due to funding in your area .
On a plus note we saw the 6th locum GP this year at our GPs , this one looked at Mr Bah Humbug looked at his notes and said has no one ever done any blood tests or suggested a neurologist? Hooray finally , for the last year  ive asked every consultant and doctor that he has seen could his injury be masking a bigger problem , he is still getting worse , his speech slurs sometimes ,he has difficulty swallowing sometimes , his tremors are getting worse and are spreading to all his limbs and his arms seem to be twisting so that he doesnt hold his hands in the right direction his walking gets ever worse . Friends who havent seen him for a while are horrified . But if the blood tests are negative I would think he will see yet another locum GP who will refuse a neurology request on the grounds of cost ....OHM

Friday 5 June 2015

Thrifty Saturday

Well me made it through to payday and the bank is still on my back...tough
So yesterday we were really extravagant and went shopping in Grimsby for more food , a trip to the Value For Money cheap out of date shop ..lol ..life is so extravagant they had a kilo of Bisto granules for a £1 , catering bags of sponge mix £1 , 15 packs of Maggi noodles £1 , I should feel terrible guilt for feeding this to my family because its not organic and in date but added to garden veg and cheap mince it will last for months and im realistic , the lottery fairy isnt going to be calling .
Meanwhile I found a 10p bargain , Royal Worcester anyone , Im not sure how the charity shop missed this one , maybe im just to picky but there doesnt seem to be anything much in the charity shops at all , even though im broke I still wander through them...lol

Wednesday 3 June 2015

Positively Blogging

So this is the weeks highlights , my £100 Sainsburys voucher from BT arrived in the nick of time , we have food, lots of food , it took an afternoon on the website seeing what is cheap and useful and adding the cost up , then an actual shop dragging my embarassed daughter and her calculator round the shop . I purchased an awful lot of ingredients , piles of cheap mince and on offer decent sausages, in fact a very peculiar selection , forgot honey , yeast and flour and that was with a list ...ggggrrrr .

Highlight no 2 , was this sewing machine , a £2 purchase from the auction a few weeks ago , I did buy it for the rather nice if filthy leather case , then during the monsoon yesterday I thought I would have a good look at it , now it had belonged to a chain smoker and was revolting yellow caked and filthy , so it took forever to clean before even giving it a try . Plugged it in and there was life , but it then took me most of the day to figure it out and sort the tensions , now it works perfectly, its a free arm zig zag and straight Cresta T123-3 from the 60s , it has all the attachments and tools and i gather if you hunt forever on the net for a set of cams it can embroider .
Not quite sure what to do with this one , doesnt have a very high resale and isnt a beginner machine at all , people are scared that you wont be able to get parts , i put a new belt on yesterday and the original would be 50 years old , this is made by Lada !!! theres nothing going to break on this one .
Mr Bah Humbug is giving me the death stare , on the grounds of one in one out rule , but i may just use it for a few months for a heavy duty upholstery project then advertise it . I do love my treadle but she doesnt zig zag .

Highlight No 3 This fat little birdy the kids spotted last night looking unhappy , im afraid the gales had grounded him , think hes a tawny owl fledgling and you leave them well alone because there parents will find and feed him , barn owls if they are out of the nest may need assistance as there parents stop feeding them at that point , just in case we confiscated Fat Cats rabbit supper for birdies breakfast if he was still there . But got up this morning and hes gone

Monday 1 June 2015

A Lincolnshire childhood

So lets cheer things up a bit today , once upon a time, long long ago , in a distant universe .  Ok back in the early 70s in rural Lincolnshire . There was this highlight of the calendar  , Farmers Union Dances , we would all climb aboard some mould smelling coach ( ok we called buses, coaches back in the day ) crammed 3 or 4 to a seat to be transported off to some distant village hall . Now to get into these occasions a family member had to be a member of the Union , not everybody worked on the land , but nobody ever counted the number of teens and kids travelling with a parent , they must have thought there was some huge families in the wilderness , because everybody who could walk to the bus stop went , including granny .
Now im sure some well meaning, checked shirted landowner thought this was a good idea ,im quite sure this was used as a form of stopping inbreeding and getting healthier serfs to work on the farms , there really were villages where everybody married cousins and looked alike even back in the 70s .
Nowadays they try to tell us that binge drinking youth is a modern phenomenum , believe me it isnt , before you even got on the coach it was necking whatever you had managed to pinch out of your parents drinks cabinet , usually half a bottle of port or advocaat and if you wanted brain damage , grannies home made hedge wines , these could blister paint and leave you with a lifelong immunity to the very reasonably priced Polish vodka now available .
The main thing to remember is that villages are very insular and tribal , so upon arrival there would be much eyeballing of the enemy , aka the other villages . Then you would get to step into the village hall wonderland , a sea of formica, plastic chairs , glitter balls and that strange red foil dangly stuff . Each village would sit with there own , no mixing allowed and there would always be Gordon and his Organ playing in his magnificent crimpleen suit complete with ruffled shirt , the 3 piece band from nightmares . The grannies would get up and waltz together as we all aimed for the bar , if you could see over it and had a pound note in your hand , you were old enough to be served . Then there would be an hour of Bingo with jam, sugar and tea bags as the highlight prizes .
Everybody wore there best , it was a sea of blue eyeshadow and runny mascara , the blokes who worked with pigs , still smelled of pigs regardless of the stench of farm disinfectant .
Now the mating rituals of teenage farm kids really did consist of sending your mate across the room to tell someone you fancied them , then scuttling back giggling . If you were lucky they might come over , hoping that your dad was at the bar and not about to attack them and a conversation might get started , but it was all strictly chaperoned , the grannies wouldnt let anyone go outside , so even if we were drunk as skunks nothing happened .
Then the disco would start , it was always the Birdie Dance or some other ode to awfulness ,just to get the grannies up and dancing , then the girls danced and the boys drank . By 10.30 it was last orders all the menfolk were stinking drunk and somebody always started a fight , these were the real deal, people got stabbed , seriously injured and the Police would come and load the usual suspects up , for a weekend in the cells and Monday at the Magistrates .
So every weekend in the season a different village hall and the same people , a cuddle on the bus going home and a stinking hangover in the morning ....it was just so exciting being a village kid...lol