Saturday, 31 January 2009

The Cow's Head {and other featured creatures...}

This is the planner I have made for my trip to Egypt in March. A country I have wanted to visit all my life and see the pyramids and the sphinx.

Have used loads of different sized pages and lots of pockets for tags and notes. In the back of the journal is a writing pad so I can sit each evening and write about the days activities and then pop them into the pockets.

I used one the Zutter's Cover Alls which makes it even easier to take with me, as I can slip the inner contents out of the cover and take that with me and then put them back in after my holiday.

Chris and I took us ourselves off to the local fish market to have a look around, there is a small veggie section and a row of butchers there as well and I was hoping to be able to pick up some nice fresh stuff.

If I ever mention wanting to try squid.... please remind me that this is how they are sold! They appear to have been plonked on bare concrete with little regard to hygiene or anything else and everyone just picks out the ones they want.... I'll pass on them, thanks!

Red snapper and some really pretty yellow and black fish that looked they would be more at home in a nice aquarium rather than a fish stall! We did buy some white snapper and some lovely big prawns for our tea.
Walking along to the small row of butchers shops we came across a very odd sight... it seems they put the head of the cow on display so that customers know the meat is fresh and where it came from... as you can see... Chris was not totally at ease with this situation.
I decided that I should also have my photo taken with Molly Moo RIP and the little butcher came dashing out to hold her head up for the pic... I think if you look closely you can see that this is not amusement but hysteria at being so close to poor deceased Molly Moo! The beef did look fresh but after meeting the cow's head I didn't really have the heart to buy a fillet or rump!!

Sunday, 25 January 2009

Shopping at Fanateer Mall

Aren't these lovely? I was going to buy just the middle one and use it for storage but then I thought it would be fun to have a little one on the top of it.... which sort of lead to me buying the very large one and stacking all three! I think when I get them back to Scotland I am going to use them to store my Christmas decorations.
I found these gorgeous make-up mirrors for handbags and couldn't resist a couple, I would love to make a mini book cover in a similar design.... which seemed like a good excuse to get them!

Oh and then I found this shoe for keeping my rings tidy on my dressing table... cute huh?

and I did a 12 x 12 LO of little Merrick who lives next door to me, the photo has come out really bad, so apologies for that, can't re-do it because I gave the page to his Mum.
For those of you who read my last post.... yes, I am still going to the gym and it is getting easier, I even burned 140 calories yesterday and stayed on the treadmill for 35 and did 2.5 kilometres!! Impressed? I am!!! ;)

Monday, 19 January 2009

Torture Chambers in Disguise

Apologies, I have been a bad blogger... but I've also been busy and I can't show you the stuff yet, so you will just have to be a little patient. Speaking of patients, I was nearly one in the local hospital yesterday.... I have a new neighbour, well, she is my next door neighbour's neighbour, so 2 down from me, just in from Canada and lo and behold, she is a fitness trainer!! Eeeeek, I am thinking maybe I should put in to be moved further from her influence...

So yesterday I get a call from neighbour 1, Odelia, who says she has been roped in to accompany Neighbour 2, Bridget the Fitness Trainer, (who will now be know as Efty) to the gym.... and to keep things fair, she decided that this meant I should also be roped in to endure and grin about it! Don't you just love people that need to share? Now, there are just a couple of inequalities in this plan... they are both 20 years my junior and they are slim........ you know, that horrid size 6 slim???

Like the idiot I am.... and having put on a few pounds over the festive period, I think this may be a good idea, a personal trainer and company at the gym!! I'm the one nearest the gym buliding so its my job to go and check it out and see if its empty.... so I saunter over and peer into the gloomy unlit room filled with machines of every description and return to inform them that its empty, so they say 'get changed' and we'll head over there for a work-out. Oh.... you mean me walking over and back again (all of 100 metres in total) wasn't my part completed?

A pair of leggings and one of DH's t-shirts (very large, very baggy, very long and hiding a multitude of sins and other unmentionable stuff) later I join the 2 skinny peeps in the gym. Did I mention that Efty is a fitness trainer? I think she went to the SS school of gymnasts, because she really takes this stuff seriously!! We line up to be weighed, I politely let them go first and I think they broke the scales because it was definitely sending out some weird uncalibrated reading when I got on it.... and who the heck can work out kilograms anyways?

Then she points us in the direction of the treadmills for some walking... well, that cheered me up, walking is no problem, I do walking all the time!! I clamber on board and Efty pushes buttons and enters the uncalibrated weight in kilos and adjusts this and that and then pushes start.... well, all I can say is that it was a bloody good job I had hold of the handle bars!! I seem to recall her mentioning something about starting out easy till she sees what shape we are in.... but I was hanging on for dear life and trying to make my little legs move fast enough so that I didn't just scoot right off the end in an undignified heap.... Odie is on the treadmill next to mine and she was fine, and not even hanging on, just swinging her arms with her steps.... show-off!

After about an hour (Efty insisted it was 5 minutes), she makes us go faster and increases the incline, I'm still hanging onto those handle bars like its the last designer outfit at half price in the shop in my size.... another couple of hours pass and Efty just keeps increasing the speed and the incline so now my little legs are climbing a vertical mountain at break neck speed and I even manage to notice that my heart rate is 122 - it seemed a little high but I was pretty happy to see I still had one, then I noticed I had burned 32 calories.... what? 32 calories? I mean, that's like the sugar in one cup of coffee... two bites of a KitKat.... this torture only burned 2 bites of a KitKat??? and then... the treadmill started to slow down, bless its cotton socks, it was cooling me off and returning to a normal flat level and sluggish speed! In my head I am singing that old Gloria Gaynor song "I Will Survive" - but only in my head... not enough air in my lungs to do anything else.... and then this voice says... and now we do it all again and build up the speed a bit...

After the treadmill I figured we would have a drink of water and head back home... but Efty looks at me oddly and says, no, that was the warm up, now we lift weights!

I have some of those at home in Scotland... they are 1.5 lbs and I use them as door stops.... the smallest ones in this gym (obviously kitted out for the opposite sex) weigh 5 lbs.... and Efty, the dear girl, hands me two of them!! Odie picks out two 10 pounds ones (told you she was a show-off) and we start working on our upper arms... my main work-out was keeping them from crushing me into mash potato.... it was a major achievement just to keep them off my chest!
Then its the machines of torture... I decided that if I was to survive this ordeal that I had better start taking the initiative and headed for anything that had a seat... figured if I was sitting down, life couldn't be too bad!! Hohum.... sitting down or not, those machines did their worst... I sat in one that worked your something or other muscles... you had to pull these HUGE pads to meet in front of you... which would have been fine if they would move... I am trying my hardest and nothing is happening.... Efty comes along and says maybe the weight is too heavy... it was only on 4 and even I had the grace to look embarrassed... so we took one off, still couldn't budge it, took another one off.... nope, still couldn't budge it even a smidgeon.... Efty removes all the weights and looks at me.... LOL.... nope, not a inch.... I figure the machine (like the scales) is broken... so Efty gets on it and it fixed itself... she had no problem moving them at all!!

I did find one machine that was my friend.... this one!! It had a seat (a definitel bonus) and I could work that big bar up and down no problem at all!! I have found my forte!!
An hour and 20 minutes later we decide we have had a adequate work-out so I head for the scales and I had lost 10 grams.... that with the 32 calories I burned on the treadmill really doesn't seem like a just reward for my efforts so I went home and ate a whole KitKat!!
Odie and Efty left me at my house with the words... so we'll do it all again tomorrow.........

Tuesday, 6 January 2009

The Little Book of Gypsy

This is one of the books for the Zutter's DT. Each page is a pocket with a tag inside, which gives loads of space for journalling and extra photos. You really must go and check out the other girl's projects, absolutely stunning work and loads of brilliant ideas.

Sunday, 4 January 2009

Happy Birthday to Me!

So DH and I went shopping for a little netbook and I had a cute pink one lined up in my sights until I saw it in real life... yukky pink, sort of salmon pink.... so I went for the black shiny version instead.... hmmm, big mistake!! Since it got home I haven't actually had a chance to look at it... someone seems to have adopted it under the guise of 'getting it set up' and 'testing it out'!! LOL

and I got this cute little guy from my Mum - who obviously knows that her daughter is still a big kid!!

and Gypsy has spent the day sleeping on the scraproom sofa keeping me company!!

Thursday, 1 January 2009

JYC December 31st and January 1st 2009

I'm finished! Happy Dance... Happy Dance!! I decided yesterday morning that I would end my Christmas Journal on the 31st December because it was my 2008 journal, I have added a page for the New Year, but its just an end page, not a prompt. Phew... bet you lovely people who have been following this are as pleased as I am!! :) I really am grateful for all your lovely comments and wishes through the journey of Journal Your Christmas, it really is wonderful how so many have found the time to pop in and say nice things, or just pop in and take a peek now and again.

I glitzed the lettering to make it all party animal looking and put the journalling in a pocket.

New Year’s Eve – I decided to take the tree down and pack away all the Christmas decs and clear the way for a fresh New Year. Its funny the things we hold on to, my Grandmother always said not to leave anything unfinished on New Year’s Eve because it would hang around all year. Her washing was always done, ironed and put away, her house spic and span ready for the new beginning. Maybe that’s why my Christmas decorations never make it into the New Year! Chris does the same with the credit cards and checks the bank accounts... start the year with a clean sheet!!
I have to admit, it doesn’t feel like New Year’s Eve, no parties planned, no day off tomorrow as it isn’t a bank holiday here – especially as they are still in 1429 in the Arabic calendar – which means they have some catching up to get to 2009!! (Also explains a lot about the culture around here)... Chris and I joined Alister, Odelia and Bruce at the restaurant for a New Year’s Eve meal and then watched a House DVD before going to bed as we had to be up at 5 a.m. for Chris to go to work.

So, this is my final page in my journal, I used my seal that Chris bought for Christmas as I had to add something Arabic to Arabian Christmas Journal!!

This is the seal, isn't it the most gorgeous thing ever?

Yep, some extremely fat guy wore it as a ring and used the wax seal on documents.

I asked Chris to check out with one of the guys at work what it said.... so I am reliably informed that it reads.... Happy New Year, and that is my wish for everyone, I hope you and yours have a wonderful 2009.

Of course, I only have this guy's translation.... so if you can read Arabic and it actually says Account Overdue - Pay Now! ..... I'd rather you didn't mention it to me, OK??

And this is how it looks now its completed!!

My little Santa on camels hanging from the o'wires...