Thursday, 30 April 2015

Other Things

I've been a bit stuck on the finances recently, as you may have noticed. I think it's to stop me thinking about my hair. I'm growing it a bit you see and, as predicted by my hairdresser, it is driving me insane. It was very short and lovely, at the moment I look a bit like one of those blokes you see occasionally - the ones for whom Britpop never went away, thankfully I don't own a Parka.

I have not been doing exceptionally well with exercise recently, I still have a cough so it doesn't make leaping around very easy. I'd also got out of the swing of wearing make up. So that's back in focus for May, unless it gets so hot that make up just slides off my face as it is prone to do. 

A surprise came through the letter box the other day, turns out someone from the shop (my drinking buddy from the ill fated Christmas party) wants my vote! He kept that one quiet. Dan is looking forward to next Thursday and Friday, he has a small nerdy list of things he's like to do work-wise and an election count is one of them, so that's something to tick off the list (have I said that before? Probably). I don't think it trumps getting to sit on a seat with a portcullis on, but it's right up there.

I don't know if anyone has worked an election before but Dan has done everything from collecting voting registrations (not as easy as it sounds, some people didn't want to confirm their details due to "Poll Tax" and he even met someone who had outstayed their visa!) to doing an emergency delivery of polling cards after they'd gone missing, to working in a polling station and being the Presiding Officer. It was always really easy to spot polling station people, the supermarket in town the evening before was full of people buying magazines, packs of muffins, flasks, sandwich making things etc. It's a long, generally uneventful day, stuck in the same room - many calories were consumed on those days. I think maybe that's why Dan did it, nothing to do with the democratic process, everything to do with having a 4 pack of chocolate chip to himself. 

This year he just has to stay for as long as it takes for the slowest person to finish their bit of the count, who knows how long it will take. One thing, I know he'll be hungry when he gets back. 

Wednesday, 29 April 2015

Where The Money Goes - May

The budget for May is £150 because we need hay and rabbit food, which will cost £40.50. We have two vouchers, one for £5 off a £35 shop at Booths and the other for £3 off £20 at Sainsbury's. We'll be using both and have written and rewritten lists for each. I'll also need to go to Home Bargains, the health food shop and Superdrug too. 

Most of the Booths shop will be our usual stuff - veg, salad, lunch stuff, washing up liquid, tea, cereal, tofu, general things. Sainsbury's is our go-to place for junk! From there we'll be getting pasta, puy lentils, nut roasts, soy mince, d/f milk, basics stuffing, pitta, houmous and washing up sponges, oil, harissa, bin bags. I am close to needing red lentils too, but I don't know if the huge bags are available, if they are I'll get some. 

We're just over the amount for each voucher. I don't want to go too far over as I'm sure we'll get a till spit from one and we've close to getting a loyalty card voucher from Booths so I can buy other things if we need them later in the month. We also have £5 of Nectar points, but we're trying to save them up in case of emergency.

From the town I'll be getting nuts, seeds, antiperspirant, tortillas and coconut milk. Then I'll be doing a bit of cooking for the freezer and hopefully avoiding the shops for most of the month. 

We also need two tyres. 

Tuesday, 28 April 2015

The Spring Fling Continues

After the junk drawer episode yesterday I faced friend of the junk drawer, it wasn't full but it was doing an amazing impression of a bin. Here's what I removed from it



It's just stuff. Most of it went away, a few bits were rehomed in the spare room. The spare room was already in disarray as I'd washed the mattress topper and cleaned the woodwork the previous day. 

There wasn't much room to move in the spare room, so in readiness for the start of May and two large (for us) shopping trips I decided to clean the pantry. I tickled it a couple of weeks ago, but this time I took everything out, chucked some stuff away, rehomed other things and put the rest back. Wow it holds a lot of stuff. Every inch of worktop in the kitchen, plus half the dining table, was piled up with stuff. I parted with the baking stuff we bought when Em came over to visit in 2013, I figured if I hadn't used it since then it probably wasn't going to happen. There was some out of date emergency feed for buns, assorted coffee making devices, and lots and lots of glass jars. 

The glass jars are a hangover from the old house. We splashed out and had a new kitchen fitted when we had that house up for sale. It was partly to sell the house (which it did) and partly in case it didn't sell so we had a kitchen was wasn't too scary. So I bought all the glass jars to display the pasta, lentils and all that stuff. Our buyers really did like it, so it was money well spent. Now I still have the jars but never quite get round to filling them. So I had to decide whether to keep them or let them go. They stayed.

After a fair old while of cleaning, spider greeting and chucking, I find myself with half an empty shelf. It's unheard of!




Without the empty jars clogging up the shelf there's plenty of room for Dan to get out the toastie maker to treat me to his special falafel toasties!



This morning I cleaned out the bunny pen. I shall spare you photographs of that. 


Monday, 27 April 2015

Tracking Back



As you can see from the state of the junk drawer, I've been feeling disorganised recently. 

In the past I was messy, then messy and disorganised, then tidy and disorganised, then messy and organised then tidy and organised, then regimented, then tidy enough and organised, now I'm mostly tidy but not very organised. 

I didn't post Father's birthday card on time. I have posted it in time for his birthday, but not in time for him to get it before he goes on holiday. He won't care but my Mum will. I bought the cards in good time, then I lost them because I didn't put them where I usually put cards. I stashed them somewhere safe when I did a frustration clean the other week. Then I couldn't find my address book. It wasn't in any of the three places it could sensibly live - the letter rack, the box of cards or the junk drawer. 

So I tracked back. Where might I put cards in a fit of frustration? Well, they were on the island in the kitchen, so that means I might have put them in the second garage (the drawer things go to when I can't be bothered to put them back in the garage). No. In that case they must be under the white shelf in the cupboard above the oven. SUCCESS!

Now to that address book. When was the last time I needed addresses? Christmas of course, what was I doing at that time, making fabric trees, where's the stuff I used for that. A quick peek into the big grey craft bag (aka friend of the junk drawer) revealed one address book. SUCCESS! 

I did tidy both the official junk drawer and second garage so some kind of order has returned. I have not faced the bag yet. 






Sunday, 26 April 2015

Time Flies When You're Having Fun

Dan got up this morning because he was freezing, I got up too. Neither of us were in a particularly splendid mood. So I stripped the beds in the unused spare bedrooms and washed the sheets and mattress topper - they were decidedly "vintage" smelling. Luckily the sky was clear and the sun was out. We finished the jammy dodgers, cleaned the whole house and did yet more laundry. 

Then I noticed it was only 10am. 

Last week was long, I think this week will be longer. We've done some nailing down of the budget, hopefully there will be no surprises next month.  

The menu plan for May is hiding away in the menu tab at the top of the page should you be interested. 

Friday, 24 April 2015

I Went To The Shop and I Bought


Loads of stuff. 

Before I went out I had another fridge check and found three carrots, success!

After my shift at the shop I went to Sainsbury's and spent £6.19 on peppers, broccoli (cheaper than loose), houmous, chickpeas, milk, pitta (the yellow sticker man called me back as he was about to reduce them), bread and lettuce. It leaves a few bob left over for anything we might need to buy next week. 

Lizzie asked me how I buy veg so cheap, my answer is that I don't really, but I think we use it efficiently. I buy plenty of things that are inexpensive/last a long time (onions, potatoes, carrots, celery) and less of more expensive items/things that don't last all that long. I base our meals around the cheap stuff - like lots of people I use onions, carrots and celery as a base for curries, chilli, stews, pies etc. then add the other veg to fill in the rest. 

We also move from fresh to preserved, I don't try to make things last or buy larger amounts so we don't run out, we just eat the fresh stuff first, then move to salad made up of red cabbage/carrots/peppers/celery, finally we move to jars of beetroot/pickled cabbage/olives/beans or frozen veg. We're also quite flexible about what we buy, if something is on special offer or just a good price because it's in season then we'll buy that and alter the menu plan if needed. 

Hopefully we'll have even more homegrown veg this year than last, we're still eating the onions we grew last year. I doubt I'll ever been keen enough to grow large amounts, but the bits we do grow are more than welcome. 

Thursday, 23 April 2015

Shopping Day

We have £9 for shopping this week and I'm off to do it this afternoon. I was asked yesterday if I would do an extra shift at the charity shop this morning so I'll be in the town anyway.

We have in the fridge -

soy milk
chocolate almond milk
spread
various chutneys etc
beetroot
1/2 courgette
2 small peppers
mushrooms
a few tomatoes
a cucumber
1/2 a thing of broccoli

On the shopping list is

bread for Dan
pitta for me
beans or something for lunches
lettuce
bunny veg
more milk

That doesn't seem to bad really does it. If there's extra cash I'll get some extra veg. Feeling more positive now it's written down. Happy times. 

Wednesday, 22 April 2015

Week Three Review

I said last week was the danger week didn't I? Did I learn? Did I heck.

We were sailing along nicely then the vet bill hit and sucked virtually all of our remaining cash away. I'm pretty upset about it, obviously because Big Grey was ill but also because I had an invitation to go out for birthday fun with my brother this weekend. He has been skint for the past few months (he's just moved in with his girlfriend) and is now seeing light at the end of the tunnel *yay* so has offered to treat us to a couple of drinks, but I think we're going to have to give it a miss as I don't think we have the cash to get us down to Liverpool. It's sad, I haven't seen him since January and then I was ill so wasn't really much company. Hopefully there will be another time soon. 

Five things this week 

1. I made pizza. 

2. I repaired a tie.

3. Someone gave Dan a packet of sunflower seeds. I'd decided I wanted to grow some after seeing the Anselm Kiefer exhibition we went to recently. 

4. Dan located the songs we'd accidentally deleted from our music player and put them back on. 

5. We've dumped the car as much as possible, we've walked to places and Dan has cycled to work when work has allowed. 

I was scraping the bottom of the barrel there to be honest, I'm not feeling especially motivated this week. 

Tuesday, 21 April 2015

Pattern Shy

Today I readied my summer wardrobe, by which I mean I picked up the summer clothes that had fallen off the hangers and moved them from the middle to one end of the cupboard. 


Top left - blue/acid yellow GAP dress £2.80 outlet shop. Maxi dress 99p, charity shop a couple of weeks ago, yellow dress paid full price for in Settle, about £7 I think. Top right - accessorise dress 99p charity shop, brown dress paid full price for about 4 years ago. Bottom left - gift from Dan for our trip to Bournemouth last year, black and white dress £2.49 charity shop last week. Bottom right - seaside t-shirt 50p charity shop about 7 years ago, blue t-shirt and shorts paid full price last year, Boden skirts from charity shop last year £4.99 each. 

I have a pile of vests too. I hope it's going to be hot this summer, or I'm going to freeze!

My summer shoe collection is small but perfectly formed 


I don't wear these shoes equally. I wear the green Teva sandals virtually all the time, the black flats got quite a lot of wear last year when we were away, the wedges I bought from a charity shop for £8, they were new and unworn, I wear them occasionally, but hopefully will wear them a bit more this year when we're out and about.  

What I've learned is that I don't really have a personal style, but I don't like trousers!

Monday, 20 April 2015

The Grey Thing

The massaging and treating of Big Grey bunny the other week only got us so far. Last night she was very very ill, cold and shivering, very forlorn so she had an overnight stay at the vet. We were not hopeful.

However, this morning the vet phoned us to ask if we'd like to collect our scary, dangerous rabbit and bring her home. So we did. We now have a £127.41 hole in the budget and an angry rabbit. 

It's just as well we had a low spend weekend. We went tot he beach on Saturday, puttered in the garden, watched some daft tv, had an afternoon nap and made pizza - I even did the bit I don't like when the dough is all sticky and horrible! It was the kind of weekend we've been saying we want but never quite get round to having. It was ideal.

A nice quiet week would be ideal this week too. 




Thursday, 16 April 2015

Week Two Round Up

I am aware I've sounded like a bit of a misery this week. I'm not miserable, I just sound it. Anyway, week two of April, we had a big day out, which was pretty much just the cost of petrol. I crossed a few things off the shopping list (is it over the top to tie the new scissors to the handle of the junk drawer to stop them wandering off?). We've not had the sunny weather a lot of people have, so I have done nothing at all in the garden, and I am starting to fear for my leeks, I think they need more room, this will happen at the weekend. 

Dan had the urge to spend! There was nothing he wanted, but he hadn't bought anything for ages and he just wanted to do it! He waited 24 hours then still wanted to spend so he filled the car up a day early. He is very much looking forward to going to the supermarket tonight, just to look at things. He's doing so well, maybe a little treat will find its way into the shopping basket. We received some vouchers for £5 off a £35 shop, that's more than we usually spend in one week, we had a think to see if there was £35 of stuff we needed but there wasn't, so that's good. We do have another voucher for the same amount to use at the start of net month, we might be able to do a stock up shop to get over that amount, we shall see. 

Five things this week 

1. We tried the soya mince. I am very pleased to report that I didn't inflate like  big balloon, so it was a winner. I used a handful with some veg, beans and spices to make taco filling. It looks like the bag will last quite a while, so good value too. 

2. I forgot to get my free coffee from the supermarket when I was waiting for Dan, so I just sat in the car and waited for him. 

3. I painted the inside of the tv unit, well half of it. I did not get on with the chalk paint, I'll be back to eggshell next time I paint something. So I only did one shelf, but we like the orange and grey together.

4. Picked up a summer dress from the charity shop. I'd had my eye on it for a while but when I went in yesterday it had been reduced, so it cost £2.49. I know all the minimalist clothing blogs say that people don't notice that you're wearing the same clothes all the time but I have noticed on our photographs from the past few months I'm wearing one of the same three outfits on every picture, so I wanted something new (and inexpensive). Actually I wanted it to be inexpensive over anything else, which is why I didn't buy anything when I was out and about on Monday. 

5. I'm starting to get through some of the not-as-wanted-as-some toiletries. I always end up with something for Christmas and they usually languish in the airing cupboard, but I'm using them now, so I'm not tempted to buy anything else. The shampoo is not as bad as I thought, although my hair is a little less shiny than usual. The shower gels are not really a fragrance I'd choose but they're not offensive to me. I've nearly finished a travel size bottle, so Dan can decant some shampoo into it, he's currently carting his big bottle of Lush shampoo to and fro, keeping a small bottle at work will be good (then I can use the Lush stuff!). 

Wednesday, 15 April 2015

Home Again (Naturally)

A few weeks ago we celebrated living here for five years. Well, we didn't celebrate it, we commented that it was a fact, there was no fizzy wine or anything. It was actually a little bit depressing because had we stayed in our old house we would only have had 10 mortgage payments left, rather than the hundreds we have now. I also made the mistake of looking at how the house and yard looked when we left that house... it was lovely, but we had our reasons for leaving. 

Although we both had a pretty clear idea of the general direction we wanted the house to move in, neither of us are keen on decorating and we certainly don't have the cash to do all that much. As you may recall, we had no proper flooring in the living room for over three years. Every room had magnolia walls and woodwork, the carpet in the living room was peach, everywhere else they were brown and threadbare - other than the living room and main bedroom they still are! The main bedroom was the most depressing of all the rooms I think, with the textured wallpaper and more magnolia. 



 When I see these pictures it is clear how far we've marched towards the home we want, I love this house and I love being near the seaside, but I don't think I've settled in here and I'm not sure I ever will. I think in part at least it's because of the job insecurity we've had since moving over, nothing to do with the place itself. My memories of our last house are very rose-tinted and I remember all the positive changes we made and how things were a lot easier. 

How things look now will be in a later post.  

For anyone who was even slightly interested in my wander over to Seaham and the East Durham Coast the other day, there is a blog post about it here on tales from a happy house. It's a far more jaunty blog than mine so you might like it!

Tuesday, 14 April 2015

The Danger Zone




Around this time is the most dangerous time of the month for me. I paid for the various bits and bobs I pay for and I think to myself "we're half way through the month, look at how much money I have" then, if I don't watch myself I go a bit bonkers and we're left with not all that much cash at the end of the month (because, of course April 13th is not the middle of the month, it's around a third of the way through the month). 

Yesterday Dan was going out and about for a meeting and asked me if I wanted to go, have a wander around then meet him later. Of course I did!

I have to say that it wasn't all that difficult to not spend loads of money. I bought things on the list - three cards, scissors, bread and mushrooms then decided to have a look around the charity shops. Well, I know people say that our shop is the friendliest they've been into and if yesterday is anything to go by I'm starting to think it's true. No-one said hello or goodbye to me in about half a dozen shops. A poor woman was struggling to get up the steps into one shop with a few donation bags, no-one helped her, so I opened the door to let her in. I couldn't believe it. In one shop the vol even said to the manager "I'll be able to get something done when this customer leaves". Needless to say my childish streak came out and I lingered in the shop for a loooooooooong time, very petty I know. 

I know it doesn't really matter if people greet you or not, and not talking about having someone at the door to hand me a basket and formally welcome me to the shop, just to acknowledge I'm there. Maybe it's just me and maybe I talk too much at my shop - that is almost certainly true!

I did find my way into one of my favourite hardware shops, I love love love hardware shops, they just look so cool. I was quite restrained and only came away with a small tin of paint and some string. That's not too bad for me. 

Monday, 13 April 2015

Home

Dan was in a bit of a fug yesterday. Partly due to the weather, partly due to having had such a big day on Saturday and partly because of the lack of wiggle room in his bit of the budget, he's just not used to it.

We talked each other into going out somewhere (just for the sake of it). But due to the weather our only real option was to go to the shops. We didn't want to do that, even though we really tried to think of something to spend my desire map money on. In the end we had a lie down on the small bed, each had a shower then looked in the pantry and did a menu plan. We received some vouchers through the post and wanted to see of we could spend enough without waste to make it worthwhile - it's borderline. 

By this time it was time to chop some veg ready for tea, have a cuppa and watch the football. So it was easier to stay at home than we thought. The best thing about it was that we were just at home, we didn't start a project, we just bodded about. 


Sunday, 12 April 2015

The Spirit of Optimism



I have to confess that until we visited in 2009 I didn't know Sunderland was at the coast. We hadn't been in that area again until yesterday. Dan made some biscuits, packed the sandwiches and prepared the flasks and off we went to East Durham. We didn't actually go to Durham it's not really my kind of thing, but the seaside is, so we went there instead.

We had a slight detour to Bowes Museum to see the "Milksnatcher" Gerald Scarfe exhibition which was brilliant. We also just caught Confected, Borrowed and Blue (ends today, 12th April) which is a brilliant collection of ceramics by Paul Scott - if you can see any of his work (there's some at the V&A apparently) then it's well worth it, very clever. After that little break we got ourselves to Peterlee to see the Apollo Pavilion, built in 1969 (hence the name) and serve to link the two parts of Sunny Blunts estate which is separated by the small stream running through it. The pavilion is a Grade II* listed building and was refurbished in 2009. I loved it. 



We then had our picnic in the nearby Castle Eden Dene woodland, an unexpected joy after the concrete. Then off to the seaside - Seaham, Easington Colliery, Horden, Hartlepool, Seaton Carew then into Middlesbrough and home! 



A fantastic anniversary trip. 

Friday, 10 April 2015

A Matter Of Taste



Dan has had another positive complaint experience, we had a bit of an issue at a coffee shop the other week. Dan decided to tweet the company about it, yesterday they sent him a message to say some points would be added to his loyalty card. Result! It's enough for a free drink so that will come in useful at some time.

The charity shop was really busy this week, there were lots of visitors as the dun finally came out on Wednesday, we sold a lot more than usual. The fun thing to notice was the type of things we sold too. Usually we sell a lot of books and electrical items. This week we sold more ceramics and glassware than anything else. People said that the stuff we had in was so different to the things they see at home that they were making room in their suitcases or beach bags for it. 

Obviously I know it's true, I always look into charity shops when we visit somewhere different, but it was really interesting to see it from the other side. We get so many visitors who come once or twice a year and make a point of visiting the shop because we always have something they want at a price they want to pay. 

I too saw something I really liked this week, but it was way out of my price range, oh well, you can't win them all, beautiful illustrations or not. 


Like Peter and Wonk, Dan and I are on our travels tomorrow, to Peterlee, I am very very excited. 

Thursday, 9 April 2015

Hardworker


In the war on fluff (we have already surrendered in the war on hay). Our previous buns were both Rex rabbits, so had beautiful velvet fur, this in no way prepared us for the fluff porcupines we have now. So we need allies. 


This is the best thing ever for getting fine fluff from their rugs. We bought it from a craft fair in a very functional part of Blackpool Winter Gardens. As you can probably tell, the rabbits think it's a wonderful toy so it is a little chewed. Prior to this I did the wet rubber glove thing, but this makes life so much easier - other then when I'm trying to wrestle it away from The White Thing. 

These are my other willing assistants


I've had the green thing for longer than I've had rabbits, it's at least 13 years old I know that as I bought it when we still lived in York. I may even have had it for longer than I've known Dan, they're both very loyal. I mainly use that to defluff fabric lampshades. The sticky tape is for my clothes! I keep a roll in the car and numerous rolls all over the house, especially near mirrors where I have the best chance of noticing that I'm covered in fluff just before I go out somewhere. 

Tomorrow, more of my glamour secrets! Maybe not. 

Wednesday, 8 April 2015

April Week One Roundup

We put the savings into the bank and haven't thought about money since. There have been a few things we thought we were going to spend money on bit didn't, such as having to take Big Grey to the vet (she's fine now). Dan has book a fortnight off work at the end of June, so we'll be working towards having a bit of cash to spend for that. 

Five things from the past week

1. we started using the soap we made back in March. It doesn't look great as  just chopped up it rather than making it look lovely, but it's actually very nice, lightly frothy and gentle, even on Dan's skin. 

2. Dan has started cycling to work. 

3. At the third time of planting we have a chilli plant! Just one of the... 12 seeds we've planted, but we now have lift off. One plant may be enough, we're only just near the end of the chillies we were given and froze last year. 

4. I'm in the middle of darning all my socks. My winter boots (now deceased) were quite slouchy so one of my feet was always sliding round meaning the right foot of each pair of socks have a hole!

5. Although we didn't have the sunshine and gorgeous weather lots of other folk did over the Easter weekend we're using the heating less, and laundry is drying fairly well outside. 

A quiet week on the money saving front. I think this month will be quiet in general as there's not a great deal spare to squeeze from the remaining budget. It's our proper anniversary this week i.e the anniversary of when we met. We were planning to go to Peterlee via Bowes Museum for the Gerald Scarfe exhibition. I'm not overly fussed by the majority of things at Bowes, but admission is free with the Art Pass so it would be OK to nip in just for this, plus we usually need to stop around there when we visit that neck of the woods. Now we think that might be a bit of a long day, especially as the bunny was a bit wonky last week, but then again the only expense will be fuel, so we'll see. 

Monday, 6 April 2015

That Kind Of Woman




If you are the keeper of a very tidy house, or feel ill when presented with not very clean things then you may wish to look away!



Do you remember ages ago a politician (maybe a UKIP person) had particularly strong views about women that don't clean behind their fridge? I am certainly one of those women. 

Dan does most of the hoovering here, and I occasionally give everywhere a quick once over (I know he doesn't do under things and all that stuff). So when I accidentally started spring cleaning our bedroom yesterday I found a very fluffy mess under the bed. It's too heavy for me to move and too low for me to get under so I had to stick my arm between the slats and clean up that way. 


That's what I extracted, lovely. 

Thursday, 2 April 2015

Seriously?


I noticed this sign in the town today - never let it be said we're behind the times!

Anyway, this is nothing to do with my fun and games at Radio Shack. Whenever the adverts for Aldi or Lidl are on I complain at great length to Dan that I'm sure we all get the message that they're cheap but great quality - we all know that by now. Pretty much everyone I know at the mere mention of either place can name their top 3 products. My Father, for example, like the rosemary crackers plus any tools available, he also has a serious LED torch buying problem. 

I don't go to Aldi very often - mainly because it's packed but I do ask my parents to pick me things up as they shop there all the time. I haven't been to Lidl for ages because it's not all that convenient for me. Today I was in the queue at Sainsbury's, Scarlet mentioned the other day that their veggie mince was nice, I don't usually buy it but thought a change is as good as a rest. The couple in front of me were packing their shopping into their sturdy Lidl bag(s) for life and paid with a stack of coupons, the ones that Sainsbury's send through the post. The couple behind me started commenting on their carrier bags and that she was using vouchers! "It must be the earnings freeze" he said, and she replied "I know, I'm sorry for some people" then they had a little giggle. 

Firstly, rude. Secondly, are you bonkers? Carrier bags and loyalty vouchers do not make you poor, they don't make you anything. I wonder if they had any thoughts about me, I had as many as four items from the Basics range and a shopping trolley with pictures of dogs on. Who knows. 

Wednesday, 1 April 2015

In The Pink, Not The Shop

I'm very happy this morning. Dan has posted the savings cheque, the menu plan is still working - meals for tonight and tomorrow are ready and waiting. There are no emergency purchases needed before the supermarket trip tomorrow night. We've only just opened a new bag of hay, so we may not need any this month. The daffodils have been flowering for weeks and they're still going strong. We're going to a folk music gig tonight, not usually my cup of tea, but we're meeting up with some friends we haven't seen since last year. It's still windy but I think I can get to the charity shop without being blown away!

We had an extra bonus treat last night too, someone from Dan's office very kindly gave everyone a bag of mini Easter eggs, so we shared them last night *yum*.

Oh and a parcel arrived for Dan yesterday too. His best friend from university sent him a belated birthday gift - a birthday pack of beers local to him. I think it was part birthday part apology because he was going to come to visit but I think his good lady has changed her mind and decided against it. It's a shame, he lives just a little too far away for us to visit without an overnight stay. 

It's a positive start to the month.