Thursday, 10 January 2008

About my day...

There are supposed to be breaks between every paragraph on these posts but Blogger seems to be playing silly buggers with me. Forgive the squashed-upness and if anyone knows of a solution, please let me know!!
My resolution to post every day didn't last very long!! Anyway, I'm here today so you can all (the three of you, that is) stop worrying...
All's going well with not drinking. Still not a drop touched although the temptation has been there. Herbal tea is now the order of the day and we seem to be gorging ourselves on the stuff! We've got all kinds in our little stock cupboard - which is actually the worktop - from green tea to blackberry and nettle. We'll be aficionados soon!
As most of you (two of the three of you) that read this blog will know, it has been raining down like the piss here for about sixteen hours now. I ventured out earlier with the bastards to let them have a run. F normally takes them out but she's working much hours now so I braved their pulling and farting about and headed off towards the river with a pocket full of poo bags and more than a little trepidation, as they have a habit of totally ignoring me!
Sasha, who's the old lady of the pack, is left off the lead to wander on. The others, including Rosie Rotbag (who, at 18ish weeks, is almost Sasha's size) have to wait until we get to the river. Now Buddy loves the water and even when it was below freezing during the holidays, F took the big dogs the the reservoir and Buddy still dived in - he is quite mental. However, when we got to the river today he was having none of it...instead of running in and chasing the ducks like he normally does he ran at the side of it with a look of terror on his face. Well, I say terror, but with Buddy his dumb-arse, vacant stare can pass for anything from confusion to utter excitement!
As it happens, they were good as gold and came to heel on command. They have now all spent the afternoon in their beds sleeping so I think the walk did them good.
To change the subject, I thought I would share this with you. I'm fascinated by other guitarists (being, ahem, one myself) and love to watch different styles. There's a guy called Andy McKee and below is his version of the Toto song "Africa". I first saw him do one of his own compositions called "Drifting" and I'll try to embed that at some point in the future. Enjoy...

Tuesday, 8 January 2008

Father, dear father...

N has now reverted back to Tuesday and Thursday at nursery so I've used the morning productively to prime and undercoat the fire surround and the new corner unit which my Dad helped me to build.
My Dad is a very good joiner and served an apprentiship as such before going into the cut-throat world of local government. I am more of a kak handed frigger and have a hard time buttering toast. He's helped me with all manner of jobs around the house over the years and I'll always be grateful for his help and advice - not just on the practical things but on everything.
So, although he'll likely never read this (unless you make him, Mum!), I'd just like to say "Thanks Dad!!"

Monday, 7 January 2008

Brothers In Hands...

My two little boys were sat on my knee this weekend and N wanted tohold K's hand. I snapped this picture while they were sat still engrossed in a DVD. I think it speaks for itself.

Friday, 4 January 2008


Here be I again with some more mundane ramblings. F is at work, N is at nursery and I am collecting K shortly after lunch. I have done my few chores for the morning and have just put a pork joint in the oven...a short interlude will follow as I head off to add the apples, garlic and rosemary. I say head off, but it's all of twenty feet from here to the oven!
Right, I'm back...and you didn't even notice I was gone!! Only a short note today as Ciara's post on decluttering has shamed me into sorting out all the pictures on my laptop into folders. I tend to just download them and leave them sat were they land. Now they're all over the place and I'm reckoning there's about 3 months worth that are going to need sorting out into their respective folders. Wish me luck 'cos it's gonna take some time!!
Before I go, a brief note on the self-hypnosis. I tried again last night but found it a little difficult to get as far as I had on my first attempt. I put that down to beginners luck in the first instance and a more inquiring mind on the second. Those in the know say that, as with all things, practice will make the transition into trance easier. I will continue to practice!!

Thursday, 3 January 2008

Strangely Hypnotic

"What?", I hear you cry, "Two posts and on consecutive days too...what's going on?!". Okay, I'm possibly being a little extravagant with my imaginative powers there, but I like to daydream.

Anyway, I've stolen five minutes whilst F is out of the house taking the two big dogs for a walk round the reservoir (see here for pictures) to do an entry...should I insert a star date here? I say stolen because F is off work today and she can be a proper slave driver sometimes. I've been forced to clean out the wardrobe this morning and clean the walls therein - it's a walk in wardrobe and is on the coldest corner of the house with no heating to it so it therefore suffers from a slight mould growth. Quite why you need to know all this I'm not sure but this is my blog and I can write what I want!
Anyway, all that aside, I have started to study self-hypnosis to help with the lifestyle changes I am trying to make. I attempted to enter my first trance last night, which was seemingly semi-successful. A very nice relaxed feeling and an almost numb floating sensation in the arms and back of the neck which was most pleasant although a little strange at first.

As with stage hypnosis, self-hypnosis works on the subconscious mind. I've always been fascinated by the fact that we as a species use little more than 5% of our brain power and even the most elite of the intelligent use no more than 10%. Imagine what could be achieved if we could tap into just a fraction more of the unused 90-95%...and that leads to another question - if we could imagine what could be achieved then would we be half a step towards achieving those dreams? Have I just confused everyone else like I've confused myself?

I digress...Self-Hypnosis is based around relaxation. I have been using active progressive relaxation (where the different muscle groups in the body are tensed and released in stages from the feet up to the head, imagining the tension running out of your body whilst your muscles relax) in spits and spats for about ten years. Once the body is relaxed the subject (me in this case) allows their eyes to focus on one unmoving spot, all the while giving suggestions that they are becoming ever more relaxed. Once the eyes have closed, which can again be induced by suggestion, the subject visualises a image familiar to them which has connotations with deep relaxation.

Now at this point the experience can become quite strange as you are still, to all intents and puroses, conscious yet you are able to make suggestions to your subconscious mind. As a test you can visualise feelings in your extremities, such as numbness in your fingers, and then will it to travel up your arms and into your shoulders. That was as far as I got last night. The progression is to enter this state to give yourself suggestions and post hypnotic cues which you can use to change areas of your life - one such example, if you wished to lose weight, would be to visualise yourself opening the fridge door but then walking away with your hands empty, thus reinforcing the idea that you don't need the quick snack you went to the fridge for. If these suggestions become deep rooted enough they will occur without a conscious effort on the part of the subject.

Now, all the above is simply from my own study and progression into the subject and should not be taken as a tutorial. I will keep you updated with my progress as I go on and let you know if it turns out to be a real journey of discovery.

Once again, thank you for reading this drivel!!

Be good!

Wednesday, 2 January 2008

A Dry Start

Hello everybody matey peeps....

I have been shamed into doing this post. I was at Akelamalu's house yesterday (not a strange thing on account of her being my mother!) and Queenie was there - she of the random ramblings fame. Queenie asked when I'd be posting again seeing as she was sick of seeing that "bloody picture" of my foot...! "Charming", thinks I...and I thought I was blessed with lovely feet, althought they are not quite at their best in that picture, I admit!

Anyway, a new year has dawned and for the first time in our adult lives F and I saw it in free from alcohol. A glass of water, a pear and a raspbarry leaf tea were our vices! We have come to the conclusion over the past few weeks that our consumption of wine and beer was starting to become silly - I won't go into details but we have decided to try to turn over a new leaf. I say try, because the drinking malarky has become a habit, and habits, by nature are hard to break. I suffer from Crohn's disease and as alcohol has a nice side effect of messing with your digestive system this is indeed a "must" for me...I've just changed consultants and don't want to start out lying to him by telling him I only drink 28 units per week!

I was silly enough to smoke for several years and anyone that smokes knows how difficult it is to give that one up. I'd watched Akelamalu stop smoking one New Years Eve without any external help, simply willpower. "That looks easy", thinks I and off I popped to attempt it...enter humiliating failure! Anyway, a few years later I attempted it again and with just one smallmishap (two puffs on a cigarette which tasted disguting) I have stuck at it and I can't say I've been really tempted since.

So, with that in mind I belive that I can break this habit and start to enjoy alcohol again as an occasional indulgence rather than an everynight quest for oblivion...ok, it's not quite that bad!! How my prose can carry me away sometimes!

F, on the other hand, has a slightly bigger challenge. She being a, ahem, good girl, has never smoked so she hasn't ever faced the challenge of ridding herself of that demon. Therefore, I shall be there to offer my unwavering support when that time of day comes round and a cold glass of white wine calls sweetly from the shop over the road.

One thing that I have done is started to drink more green tea. I've always enjoyed green tea anyway and its health benefits are now beginning to be proven. My plan is to have a cup of green tea when I'm feeling a little weak thus quenching my need for that other liquid substance and reminding myself that the drink I'm taking is doing me far more good than harm. I sweeten my tea with honey (Manuka is best, but Asda didn't have any!) and now add a half teaspoon of crushed cinnamon which not only aids digestion but has been proven to lower cholesterol and aid weight loss.

Time will tell as to how long this new leaf stays turned but I aim to keep you informed of how it goes. Besides, those "experts" say that writing down a goal or resolution and sharing it with friends makes it more reinforced and harder to break. So friends, support us on our quest to become alcohol free and official bores at parties!!!

Be good....