If we were having Coffee: I feel like Alice

Hello  everyone  welcome  to  the garden  we have a marquee  and  heaters, all the garden  furniture  has  been washed  and  I have put out cushions for your  comfort.

Well what  do  you  think  shall  we  chance  it . Now  as  always  we have  tea  and coffee  from all over  the world not to mention all our cakes  and muffins  and  as Paul  calls  them sweets! Every single  one  is  calorie  free! Plus of course  we now have spirits  and liquors  to warm the coldest of  you.

If we were having  Coffee: I would ask  you what  has been going on in your world this week, has  anything  deeply affected  you, have  you need a sympathetic ear, a shoulder to cry  on or  just  needed someone  to make  you laugh! If  yes  feel free to talk it out  here  with us. We will all help if  we can.

If we were having Coffee: I would  remind  you  that  there  are lots of  other  coffee mornings  all shared  and organized  By  Diana  and  Gene’O  over at,Part time monster  

If we were having coffee: Phew, I  shall  have  to say  I  am sorry  for being late . I have had  a really  eventful weekend! Yesterday  (Saturday ) I was up really  early  because I had  to be at  the hospital at 8am. I had  to  go in  for an operation. I had  spent  all week  since  returning  from  the  cruise  worrying  about it! Well  what  do  you know  I have been in had  my  op  and I  am now  home  and I have survived. Results  of  two  biopsys in 3/4 weeks!

Silly  me  I  was really  worried   and  I don’t  know  why  because  normally  I take  things in my  stride.Hey ho  what do ya know!!

If we were having coffee:  The  hubby  and I  had  a  trip out this  week  just off  the cuff  and unexpected I  think he  was  very  kindly  trying  to keep  my  mind off  the impending operation. Well  it  was lovely   the  weather and  not  too busy.  We  went  to Marlow  on  the  Thames , we had  a good drive  down  there  but  sadly  we  could not  find  anywhere  to  park  so  we took  a trip down memory  lane  and  found a  spot  where hubby had picniced  with his parents  when he was young!  I have  put in  a photo below  of  the spot. After that  we went  to  the lovely  village  of Bisham  and  we had  a  beautiful  meal in a country  pub.  here  are  some  photos  of Bisham too.

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Bisham

Winter Hill

Winter Hill

A lovely  day out indeed!

If  we were having coffee : It is  garden  time again….. stop  yawning I  am only  going to  show  you  two photos, it is of  our  first  early  crop of  new potatoes!

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More to come

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Green fingers and gloves

Right  well If we were having coffee: I would have to  say I  must  take  my leave  I  am not  feeling  tip top yet   and  we have had  the  mother in law over  for the day  and she keeps us on our toes. Plus I had a temperature  this afternoon. So I  am off  to  get my  Jimjams  and  slippers  and have an early  night.

Once  again I  thank  you  all for  visiting  me  and Paul  too  we love to  see you  and hear  what  you have to say  and  we hope  you will join us again next  week! Hugs  to you  all!

Do  all stay  and  be comfortable   we love  to see  you  all.

And of course  the

IF WE WERE HAVING COFFEE:  WEEKEND COFFEE SHARE

over at Part Time  Monster  and Gene’O’s

If We Were Having Coffee – July 19/2015 : Guest Post

Are These Heavy?

 

your Barista Paul

Welcome to Willow’s weekly coffee and tea garden. My name is Paul; I’ll be your barista today. I’m happy to see you have come for a cuppa and a chat. Please come into the garden and make yourself comfortable. Willow fluffed the cushions on the chairs and set the tables in the garden so we can have a cuppa and chat as we soak up the sun and enjoy the beautiful plants. As usual, I’d be pleased to bring a pot of whatever beverage you prefer – we have a wide range of teas and coffees to satisfy our world-wide readership. Also available is a large selection of spirits for addition to your cuppa or in its place. We can relax amongst the flowers while we discuss the affairs of the week both personal and/or worldwide. How has your week been?

It’s great to be back here at Willow’s this week. Mark and his family were wonderful hosts whilst Willow was touring the Rhine. So, personally it has been a relatively uneventful week this week. My bed is quite low to the floor and I was having a hard time getting out of it in the morning as my knees don’t work as they used to. I was looking around trying to find a way to raise the bed up 6 or 8 inches – not only for ease of egress but also to allow more storage underneath.

So, I took my handicap bus to Home Depot – for our continental readers, this is a huge building supply chain in North America whose stores each cover acres. You could easily build a house inside the store and never have to go out to get anything.

I wandered around the store for over an hour looking for blocking or anything that could be inexpensively repurposed to raise the bed. I had checked out concrete blocks on-line  before going, so I visited them out in the building supply yard. Whew, they were a lot bigger in person than they were on the screen. At almost 50 pounds each, they were heavy. I checked out the lumber dept but I have few tools and lumber was only sold by the 8, 10 or 12 foot sections. Besides the planks were quite expensive.

Would you like another cuppa? Perhaps a sweet? In the end I found myself back at the concrete blocks – at only $3 each, definitely the best option financially, but the weight. I had a shopping cart and it groaned when I put the first block in – in hindsight I should have gotten one of the big platform dollies they have for heavy supplies. I shifted the block to the back of the cart closest to the handle and over the bigger wheels. Then I loaded in 3 more blocks as the cart sagged lower after each addition. Making my way through the store to the checkout was an adventure as the heavy cart wanted to go in straight lines only. I paid the bill and pushed my blocks out front to wait for my ride. I must confess I was concerned that the driver might object to 200 pounds of concrete blocks. I have seen the unionized drivers complain about too many bags of groceries, let alone building supplies.

I was thinking up all sorts of approaches to convince the driver how important these blocks were when a taxi pulled up. More often than not, the handicap service uses their own busses but sometimes they farm out work to taxis – no cost to the users. Hmmm, interesting development. I waved him down (they put a “PARA-Transpo” sign on the side of the car when on handicap service) and he backed up to my cart, popping the trunk.

 

 

 

 

I greeted the driver and he looked hesitant, asking: “I hope these aren’t too heavy?” Ha! I assured him they were not heavy at all as I swung one into the trunk. He grabbed a second one with one hand and couldn’t move it until he adjusted his grip and used both hands. He let out a grunt as he lowered it into the trunk. I had the other two aboard before he could straighten up. I just smiled at him and walked around to the front seat. He dropped me and my concrete blocks off at the back door to my apartment so I wouldn’t have to lug the blocks all the way through the building. The wooden steps up to my back deck are not the sturdiest and I was a bit concerned about having my own weight plus the blocks on one step. So I moved them up a few steps at a time as I stood below. In short order I had them in my room and under the legs of my bed. They work perfect. When I sit on the edge of the bed now, my legs hang straight down and my feet are flat on the floor. Time for a cup of coffee.

On that note, that’s about all we have room for this week, so it’s time to settle in with another cuppa and enjoy the garden. Sweets anyone? Please join me in thanking Willow for her invitation to tea. We are all honored that you dropped by today to visit. I hope you’ve enjoyed yourself and the conversation and please look around at Willow’s other posts while you’re here. Willow is over there serving her guests and chatting it up. Let’s go see how she is today. Have a great week. We look forward to seeing you back here for sweets and beverages of your choice again next week.

And of course  the

IF WE WERE HAVING COFFEE:  WEEKEND COFFEE SHARE

over at Part Time  Monster  and Gene’O’s

 

 

If We Were Having Coffee – June 28/2015 Guest Post: Rights and Freedoms

Rights and Freedoms

 

Paul Your Barista

Welcome to Willow’s weekly coffee and tea garden. My name is Paul; I’ll be your barista today. I’m happy to see you have come for a cuppa and a chat. Please come into the garden and make yourself comfortable. Willow has put out the cushions on the chairs and set the table under the canopy so we can have a cuppa and chat. As usual, I’d be pleased to bring a pot of whatever beverage you prefer – we have a wide range of teas and coffees to satisfy our world-wide readership. Also available is a large selection of spirits for addition to your cuppa or in its place. We can relax amongst the flowers while we discuss the affairs of the week both personal and/or worldwide. How has your week been?

 

Well now folks, over here in North America this week, the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) made two earth shaking rulings this week – literally changing the face of American law and culture in a way celebrated by many. Early in the week they ruled that Obamacare (the American government’s organizing and making mandatory health insurance) was to stay, and so were any funds used to support that program. Then later in the week that same high court ruled that same sex marriages were to be legalized across the country. Both of these rulings were unexpected and neither was one that I thought I would see in my lifetime.

The US is slowly but surely separating into two diametrically opposing groups, roughly organized around degree of wealth. The wealthy, under the Republican Party, oppos Obamacare and any other policies that have the government securing the well being of the population. They are adamant that individual responsibility for personal well being is sacrosanct, even if this means the bankruptcy or even death of the individual. This is very easy for them to believe as they have the funds to support their own health care and all else. On the flip side of the coin, many average Americans had no health care coverage and could not buy any. Now they can and without any prior conditions limitations. Mind you it is expensive, but health care in general is expensive. The Supreme Court has made Obamacare official – it is here to stay. This is a huge step for America towards providing basic needs for their population. A very new and important step.

 

Would you like another cuppa? Perhaps a sweet? Corporate America has a mantra that they take care of their employees. The truth is that one of the central outcomes of capitalism is to transfer wealth to those who are already wealthy – and we can see the effects of this as fewer and fewer hold more and more of the wealth on a yearly basis.

One of the results of this gradual devaluation of the population is the reduction of their ability to pay for healthcare. To keep a healthy populace it is important to offer financially affordable healthcare – and that means affordable insurance. (Or socialized healthcare like Canada – which is a sort of insurance supported by taxation.) So, the implementation of Obamacare and its confirmation by SCOTUS , is a critical step in recognizing the responsibility of government to care for its citizens. I say: Well Done.

 

 

Then towards end of the week, SCOTUS ruled again. This time they legalized same sex marriages. This was a surprise even to those who were supporting the effort. It was possible for the court to come to a decision that was half way between legalizing and disallowing. They did not – they went all the way. Now, in the United States, the individual states have a lot of authority and may not follow the federal law. However that is an easily solved issue by simply relocating. Also, the ruling gives all the rights of federal marital benefits to same sex couples, benefits like pensions and survivor rights and medical and financial power of attorney, regardless of the position of the individual

 

One would think that this ruling would not raise any ire, after all it is simply the extension of rights to those who have been denied. It harms no one, and changes nothing for the general population. And yet here is a quote from a blogger on a recent post about the upcoming US Presidential election: “Perry for President: anti-immigration and anti-gay. There’s no other candidate in my opinion. My husband says his policies have brought prosperity to Texas and it’s the kind of thing I’d like to see happen for our whole country.” – Kate Minter  commenting on Insanitybytes2. And that is pretty tame – many comments have been filled with vitriol. Even one of the dissenting Supreme Court Justices – Scalia, of course (he votes against any public benefit cases) – said the ruling was “higgledy-piggledy” and “pure applesauce” , whatever that means.

On that note, that’s about all we have room for this week, so it’s time to settle in with another cuppa and enjoy the garden. Sweets anyone? Please join me in thanking Willow for her invitation to tea. We are all honored that you dropped by today to visit. I hope you’ve enjoyed yourself and the conversation and please look around at Willow’s other posts while you’re here. Willow is over there serving her guests and chatting it up. Let’s go see how she is today. Have a great week. We look forward to seeing you back here for sweets and beverages of your choice again next week.

Gay Pride Afternoon Tea

And of course  the

IF WE WERE HAVING COFFEE:  WEEKEND COFFEE SHARE

over at Part Time  Monster  and Gene’O’s

 

 

IF WE WERE HAVING COFFEE: GARDENS, BIRTHDAYS AND CANALS

Come on I am ready for coffee!

 

Hello  everyone  welcome  to  the garden  we have a marquee  and  heaters, all the garden  furniture  has  been washed  and  I have put out cushions for your  comfort.

Well what  do  you  think  shall  we  chance  it . Now  as  always  we have  tea  and coffee  from all over  the world not to mention all our cakes  and muffins  and  as Paul  calls  them sweets! Every single  one  is  calorie  free! Plus of course  we now have spirits  and liquors  to warm the coldest of  you.

If we were having  Coffee: I would ask  you what  has been going on in your world this week, has  anything  deeply affected  you, have  you need a sympathetic ear, a shoulder to cry  on or  just  needed someone  to make  you laugh! If  yes  feel free to talk it out  here  with us. We will all help if  we can.

If we were having Coffee: I would  remind  you  that  there  are lots of  other  coffee mornings  all shared  and organized  By  Diana  and  Gene’O  over at,Part time monster  

If  we were having Coffee:  Well it has been  a busy  week  and I have  quite  a lot  to report  but  firstly  let me  get  you  all settled  down  with  a drink  and something  to eat . So far  this  week  I have  been to the  gym  four  times (  not  as  much  as usual) I have today  off  because my trainer  is on holiday  in Crete  and  so I  don’t have  to go  to Core  Class …Excuse  me  while I  let  a whoop  of  joy! As  much as  I  take  my training  seriously  and I realize that  if  I  don’t  go my  back  will suffer  I am always  happy  to have a day off!

Monday  I had  to  go  to the  dentist  which  is  not much  fun  and hard  on the purse! We  do have NHS  dentists which  patients  do pay  for  but  at a much reduced  rate. It  is hard  to get on to  their  books  so  many people including us   have  to use  private  dentists  who  are much  more  expensive ! But  that is  life isn’t it.

If  we were having Coffee: On Wednesday  the husband  and I decided  to  go  for  a walk along  a  canal near  where  we live. The  weather  was lovely  and  we  saw  some cows  ducks, swans  and  lots of  narrow  boats. We  were  lucky  enough  to be  at  a lock  just  as  a narrow boat  approached  so  we sat  on  the bench  and watched  their  progress  through the lock.  We  had a chat  with  the people  on the  boat  who  said  they  had  been  living on the  boat  for  six  month  periods  but  were  seriously  thinking of  making it permanent. They had  both  given up  work  and if  they  were  not  too extravagant they  managed  very  well. They  had a little  dog   and  also  a 6 week old duck  which  they  had  adopted  the  day it had  hatched ( no  parents) and  were considering  renaming  the  boat  The  Dog  and Duck ! We had  to smile  as that  is a common  name  for a pub.

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The Duck

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Deep in the lock

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A gull in flight

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The Cows that tried to block our path

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Two beautiful Swans

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The lock filling up.

It  was  a lovely  day,  the  weather  was fantastic   and  we  enjoyed  the people  and  animals  we  met,  though  the  Cows were  rather large! But  I  just  firmly  asked  they  to  move  and  they  did …I  think they  were  just  showing off! After  we had  had our  walk  we had  a lovely  pub  lunch! It  was a wonderful  day out  with the husband,  who  all credit  to him  had  planned it  from  start  to  finish!

If  we  were having  Coffee : Its  time  to bore  you  with  the  weekly  garden  pictorial  update.

 

 

 

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The Rockery

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More of the rockery

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Bushes

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Flowering Bush

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The old white Rose tree

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Our Raised Bed

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Potatoes and Beans

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Close up

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Tomato soldiers

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Beans in the pot

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The roses out the front.

As  you  can see  everything is  growing  well …. please  note  I  know  the names of  all my  plants NOT!!

If  we  were having coffee : 

I  tell  you  that o  Thursday  my  friend  L  and  I  went over  to  visit  my  sort of  sister  ( best  friends for  49yrs) to  celebrate her up coming  birthday  later  this month. Last  Thursday  was  the only  day  we could  all get together  so  we  went  to  Windsor   and  had  afternoon  tea! Just Like  proper ladies!

After  tea  we had  a look round  the shops !! Again it was a lovely  day  so  had fun chatting  as  we walked!

Now If  we were having  coffee : I  don’t  want  you getting  the idea   that I am an airhead with nothing  better  to do  than swan around  having  lunch  and tea  (  as  much as I would  like  to)  I am  a normal busy  woman with lots of ups  and downs in my  life. Family  , friends, life in general  throws  all the usual grief  and trials  my  way  I just  choose  to  try and  keep  them off of  my  coffee  days  with  you my  friends. I  am aware of  all the awful  things  happening  around  the  world  and near  to home  here in England. I do  mention these  things on occasion   but  mostly  I  hope I  can entertain you  with  the happier  side of  life  like  these!

Little monsters

Right  Lets  go  and visit  Paul  and his  friends  they are  all having  fun here  too lets  see  what  , interesting,  thought provoking   and happy  stories  Paul  has  for us  today. Do  all stay  and  be comfortable   we love  to see  you  all.

And of course  the

IF WE WERE HAVING COFFEE:  WEEKEND COFFEE SHARE

over at Part Time  Monster  and Gene’O’s

 

 

 

 

 

 

If we were having Coffee: Friends, Eurovision,

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Can you spot that Bird!

 

Hello  everyone  I  thought  I  would catch  you  all again  as  you  arrive. I was  thinking  as  the  weather  is  improving  we  could  start  sitting out in the  garden ! I  think it  is  looking  good  have  a  look  for  yourselves   and  then  we can  decide  if  we are  ready  to  move out  there!

Well what  do  you  think  shall  we  chance  it  we  can  bring out  the  heaters  we used  in  the Autumn  if  anyone  is  used  to higher  temperatures. Now  as  always  we have  tea  and coffee  from all over  the world not to mention all our cakes  and muffins  and  as Paul  calls  them sweets! Every single  one  is  calorie  free! Plus of course  we now have spirits  and liquors  to warm the coldest of  you.

If we were having  Coffee: I would ask  you what  has been going on in your world this week, has  anything  deeply affected  you, have  you need a sympathetic ear, a shoulder to cry  on or  just  needed someone  to make  you laugh! If  yes  feel free to talk it out  here  with us. We will all help if  we can.

If we were having Coffee: I would  remind  you  that  there  are lots of  other  coffee mornings  all shared  and organized  By  Diana  and  Gene’O  over at,Part time monster  

Well, I  am exhausted  physically  and mentally  today  so  I  am going to  sit  here  and  pour  you all a drink   do  help  yourselves  to  any  cake or  biscuit , remember  as I  have already  said  all are  calorie  free.

If  we  were having  Coffee: I  would  tell  you  that  it  has  been  a very  hectic  week on  the  home front! Monday  evening  our  eldest  son  came  to  stay  as  he  had  been  invited  to  give  a small lecture  on  a  new  type of  working practice,  that  the  firm he  works  for uses, at anther  firm . We live  slap  in the middle  of his  journey  and  so  he stayed  the night  with us and polish his  presentation. Apparently  all went  well  though  the  small casual group  around  the table  turned out  to be  a room full of  top  bosses! he  did  well. He  dropped  in  for coffee  on his way  back  to  work  and gave us  a debrief!

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A Wisteria Tree

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Shrubs, trees and fountain

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A Bee

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Another Bee

If  we  were having  Coffee: Thursday  was  a lovely  day  weather wise and  company  wise  too. My gym buddie  and I  went  to Milford  to  meet  a dear  friend  who  had  moved  near  to the  sea  about  7yrs  ago  but  we  still keep in  touch , phone  email  and  regularly  meet  up  for  lunch. Above   are  some  views  of  the  garden center  we  visited  absolutely  stunning I  am afraid   my  camera  does  not do  it  justice. We all had a lovely  day  and  though the driving  did  leave  me  worn  out ( I had  forgotten  to take  my  morning tablets  and had  none  with  me) I really  had a  great  day. After  an early  night  and a does  of  pills  I  was back up  and running  ( so  to  speak) on Friday!)

 If we were having  Coffee:  Now it is  time to  bore  you  all  with  the garden veg  report . Now  I  misled  Tangental   we are  growing  beans   and I have  the photos  to  prove it! The Husband  had  planted  some  and  not  told  me  so I was  surprised  to  see  them  growing up!! So  far I  can  still  report  things  are  growing  well!  Do  visit  Tangental’s  Blog  it  just wonderful!

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The Bird Box inhabited

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Potatoes and Beans

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Beans

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Potatoes

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Toms stretching

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More Toms

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Toms to give away

 If we were having  Coffee: Were  are  my  manners  would  you like  another  cuppa  or  some  cakes  they  are  also  temping  we even have  some  Danish pastries  and  croissants today.

MUMMMMMMMMMMM!

On  the  world  News  front  If  we were having  coffee:  I  would  say  How  delighted  I  am  about  the  Irish referendum results! Gay  Marriage  is  now  legal  in Ireland ( well southern Ireland  that  is, Northern  Ireland  being  slightly  different  because  it is  part  of  the UK)  It is  funny  when they  do  the weather  for the  UK  the  shows  England, Scotland , Wales  and Ireland   but  the weather is only  the Northern Ireland  patch ..Southern Ireland obviously  has  no weather? 😉

 

Now  isn’t  that  a  conundrum? And  what  does  Northern Ireland  think  about  all this  well….. I  am not  going  to go  into  this  here  but I   have  here  a link  from the Guardian  which  you  can peruse! read  here  and  draw  your  own conclusions.

I  am personally  delighted  live  and live  and let  live and give  everyone  a chance  to be themselves .

Rainbows over Dublin and Cork!

 

How  wonderfully  fitting there  were Rainbows  over  Dublin  and Cork  as  the  the  results  came in …. A  sign  from  God  I  think  waving the  Rainbow  flag!!

If  we were having Coffee: I would  have to  admit  that  I  did not watch  the Eurovision  Song  Contest  ( I  was actually  too busy  watching  Person of Interest , we have been watching  season  1,2  & 3  and  found it  amazing, we are   totally  hooked!!) Sorry I  digress we  have  watched the  Eurovison  in  in the past  but it has  turned into a joke  now . First  Terry  Wogan  had  us  all stitches   with his cutting  and humourus   comments  and  commentary  and now Graham Norton  is  filling his  shoes ..well!  Sadly  the UK  are  never  liked much in Europe  and  too much  of  the voting  is political . I  am glad  we  don’t  win  because  I  think  this  country  has  better  things  to spend  vast  amounts of  money on…. ie Health  service  education , benefit  fraud, immigration …I  need  not  go on !  Any who  !! here is our  entry.

we  came in the bottom end of  votes but it’s  not  a bad  Euro  entry.

And  the  winner  Sweden  …Well done  Sweden , nice  visual effects ! Good  Eurovision song .

Oh ! and Australia  joined in  for  the first  time….. How  does  that  work  Australia ..in Europe? As  much  as  we all love  you guys  there is  no way  you are European! here is  their  entry.   Another  good  Euro  song.

Well  as  you can see I  am very  tongue in  cheek about  the Contest  come  back  Wogan  do a  double  act  with Graham  Norton  then I  might  watch!!

If  we were having Coffee:  I  would say  lets  finish on that light note! Lets  go  and find  Paul’s  guests  some of  them are out here in the garden  and  some  are  in the house . Have  a  great  week  and don’t  forget  Paul is  guest  posting  all over  the place  track him down  and enjoy  his magic! Cordeliasmomstill       has  a link of  all his  post  here  Check  Codeliasmomstill  blog out  too  it is so much fun  !! Okay  love  to you  all  and  see  you  all next  week I  hope !!

And of course  the

IF WE WERE HAVING COFFEE:  WEEKEND COFFEE SHARE

over at Part Time  Monster  and Gene’O’s

 

 

If We Were Having Coffee: Elections, V.E Day 70th Anniversary, Planets and Mother’s Day

If  we  were having  Coffee  :  time  again to ask how  are  you all are   and  what  have  you been up  to this  week!  Come in it is lovely  to see you all here again. The fires are lit and  the cushions are plumped up and  we have  the coffee and tea on  the go  and the cakes and sweets are all set out.  We  have  tea  and coffee  from all over  the world not to mention all our cakes  and muffins  and  as Paul  calls  them sweets! Every single  one  is  calorie  free! Plus of course  we now have spirits  and liquors  to warm the coldest of  you.

If we were having  Coffee: I would ask  you what  has been going on in your world this week, has  anything  deeply affected  you, have  you need a sympathetic ear, a shoulder to cry  on or  just  needed someone  to make  you laugh! If  yes  feel free to talk it out  here  with us. We will all help if  we can.

If we were having Coffee: I would  remind  you  that  there  are lots of  other  coffee mornings  all shared  and organized  By  Diana  and  Gene’O  over at,Part time monster  

Well  now  what  has  been  happening  in  your  part  of  the  world? We  have  finally had  our  General  Election  and in  some places  local  council  elections  as  well.

It  really  seems  that  the Election  Campaign has  been  going on  forever  but  finally  this  Thursday  just  gone, 7th of  May  it  arrived! Hubby  and I  were  up  early  and  though  we went  to  vote  at  different  times  we cast our  votes  early.

If  we  were having  Coffee:  I would  tell  you  that   I was  amazed  to  see a universe of  planets  at  the polling  station! It was an interplanetary  experience!

Interplanetary voters

Interplanetary voters

I came  face  to  face  with  six  young  voters! It  was  their  last  day  at school and their  first Legal  Vote and  lucky  them  it  fell on  a General  Election!! Why  were  they  dressed as planets… well I  have  no idea  but I  do know  that in  recent  years  those  leaving  school  locally   have a fancy  dress  day  and a  leavers  ball! So I  guess  these  bright  young  things  decided  to  go galactic!

Would  you like  another  coffee  or  a piece  of  cake? There  are plenty  to choose  from, and  they  are  all calorie  free.

 

If  we  were having  Coffee : I would  tell  you  that Friday 8th May  was  the 70th Anniversary  of  VE Day read  more here.

The  three  days  of  celebrations  started  at  the  Cenotaph at 3pm, on  the  8th May.  the chimes of Big Ben and ceremonial guns at Wellington Barracks and the Tower of London marked a national two-minute silence. Guns were also sounded from saluting posts in Edinburgh, Cardiff and Belfast. Members of the public lined the streets and schools, organisations and companies across the UK participated.

Following the silence, the Last Post was played by a Royal Marine bugler and wreaths were laid by those attending. The service included a reading of extracts from Winston Churchill’s speech by Mr Randolph Churchill, Great-Grandson of Winston Churchill, hymns and a blessing and concluded with the playing of the National Anthem.

 

Over  200 beacons  were  lit  all over  England  on Friday  8th May  as  part  of  these  same  celebrations, more  details  here.

 

If  we  were having Coffee: I would  tell  you  that  in  this  week  of  General Elections, planet  sightings  and 70th  VE commemorations   that  the  hubby  and I  have been  busy too.

Now  I  know  that  the US  is  celebrating  Mothers Day  this  weekend I  want  to  wish  all mothers  a  wonderful  day   and  to  all children I  encourage  you  to do do  something  special  for  your Mums  they  love  you so!

Here  is  the poem I  wrote  for  my  mum  some years ago

Gentle she was

Mum

Gentle she was, a young woman of means, beautiful in her Marcel Wave she was.

A hair dresser with her own shop a teaser of hair and tresses.

Then the quiet Irish man took her eye and her heart.

Not impressed were her parents with the young Irish trade unionist from the motor trade.

Time eventually brought them round to accept the vows the young couple had made.

Grief she bore when her fist born died at six months

brave she was to have more. Three girls then two boys , and two more angels lost in-between.

Then after all was finished me, making six.

Hard she worked to bring us up and support her quiet man who was there for her too.

Kind she was, good and open hearted she was.

The door always open to family and waifs and strays

big hearted she was to all who past through our door.

Always there she was, with words of wisdom and comfort.

Her beautiful heart shone through her eyes.

Patient she was  but there was temper there if needed,

she was not strong or mean but if needed her children and her man she would defend to the death!

Beautiful she was in features and in heart

there was not task she would not finish if she had made a start.

Cried for her daughters she did as her man gave them away

and when her sons went too she had a proud day.

Together alone again by themselves again.

Happy she was full of the business of her quiet man.

Yet she was always ready to talk and help and ease our pain.

Cleaver she was but not school or college wise she was wise in life and love and truth and need.

Lonely she was when her man was taken ,

wept she did as she wanted to join him.

Lost she was without the quiet man .

Heart broken she became though she threw herself in to caring for grandchildren.

Gone she was before her body, her mind and soul went to him.

Lost to us she was, a smile here and there maybe a flash of recognition.

Unknowing of all around her she was,sad eyed frighted lamb lonely lonely.

Tiny she was when she went sadly lost to us long before .

Gone into her mind to find her quiet man.

Tears we shed for her,we wept in grief and I in anger because so long had she been gone and I had wanted to talk to her,

but gone she really was.

Anemones her favourite flowers were they always remind me of her.

I forgave her for leaving me and now accept she had to go

as by the side of her quiet man was where she had to be.

Mum’s favourite flowers

Never to be forgotten.

If  we  were  having  coffee  : I  would  ask if you  could  do  with a  refill and  a cake. I  must  close  now  so  lets  go  and join  Paul  he is over  at  Mark’s place  this  week and  all his  guests they  are all enjoying  themselves  by  the fire!

And of course  the

IF WE WERE HAVING COFFEE:  WEEKEND COFFEE SHARE

over at Part Time  Monster  and Gene’O’s

 

If We Were Having Coffee – May 3/2015: Guest Post.

Happy Thoughts

 

Welcome to Willow’s weekly coffee and tea garden. My name is Paul, I’ll be your barista today and I’m happy to be here once again. Please come in and make yourself comfortable. Willow has plumped the cushions and started a cozy fire so we can warm ourselves while we have a cuppa and chat. As usual, I’d be pleased to bring a pot of whatever beverage you prefer – we have a wide range of teas and coffees to satisfy our world-wide readership. Also available is a large selection of spirits for addition to your cuppa or in its place. We can relax while we discuss the affairs of the week both personal and/or worldwide. How has your week been?

Well, it’s been an interesting week all around. It never ceases to amaze me how kind people can be just out of the blue. I’ve had a problem with water leaking into my apartment through the ceiling for about a year now. The manager had a lot of work done on the roof and the problem stopped for the winter. A few weeks ago when it rained hard, the leak started up again. It is a lot of water and I have seen myself haul over 100 liters (about 25 gallons) out in buckets after a storm. So, the manager approached me this week and asked if I would move into another comparable but slightly larger and newer unit this coming week. He will keep my rent the same and give me some people to help me move. I agreed; glad to be rid of the water. Anyway, I met one of my fellow renters, Steve, who I chat with regularly and he asked how things were going. I mentioned the move to him and he said I should give him a call and he would be happy to help. I thought that was very kind of him and agreed to call. So, I’m tidying up this weekend and getting ready to move. It isn’t much but I like to leave the apartment relatively clean when I go. I know they will be tearing out the ceiling and walls, so I’m not overly concerned except on general principles.

 

Would you like a refill of your cuppa? Perhaps a sweet – piece of cake or biscuit or a slice of pie? All our sweets are calorie free here. Oh, as a follow up to last week’s rant, I received my bus pass in the mail on Friday before I needed to use it to go to dialysis. My little tussle with the bureaucracy paid off. I should mention, as one of the commenters suggested last week, that this whole pass thing is a basically me wanting to stay straight with the world. It is the city that sends the pass and it is the city that supplies the transportation, so there is no money that changes hands and whether I get a pass or don’t, the drivers will still give me a ride. Everyone who does the actually work realizes that this is a simple accounting activity (i.e. which department gets to claim the cost) and there is no enforcement that would deny me a ride. I just try very hard to play by their rules as I am grateful for the service and don’t want to do anything to jeopardize the services.

 

So, for our British readers, congratulations on the newest addition to the Royal family this weekend. I see Kate has come through with her health intact and now has a new 8 pound baby girl. It is wonderful to see all the happiness and cheer and celebrations in the news for a change. In perusing the news of the birth I found it amusing that many publications were listing the odds that gamblers were placing on what name will be chosen for the new princess. That’s not something that would be seen here in Canada. It occurred to me that Prince William could disguise himself and place a bet and then name the princess so he would win. Ha! Not that he would but it is a humorous thought.

Would you like a refill while we chat? Please feel free to choose anything from our large selection. Anyway, on the cheerful front (for some) this week in Vancouver, British Columbia’s foray into legalized marijuana has run into the surfeit of laws yet again. Ha! Apparently one of the “illegal” marijuana dispensaries decided to enhance business by offering a free joint (or marijuana cookie) to any first time visitors to their shop. There are dozens of these “illegal” shops as defined by federal laws – which, in Canada, are responsible for drug regulations. However the province of British Columbia has decided to tolerate the sale of marijuana as it is so popular in that province (the weather is perfect for cultivation, there is cheap electricity and the public attitude is very permissive). In fact marijuana is the largest cash crop in the province – over $6 billion annually. Anyway, the police are scratching their heads because they have no laws to enforce and yet really don’t want marijuana being distributed free. So, the promotion continues – if you are interested in trying marijuana, then hurry on over to Vancouver where, for now, you can not only buy it but, for now, try it for free.

 

Oh, in closing did you know that Saturday was World Naked Gardening Day? How did you celebrate (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_Naked_Gardening_Day )  If you forgot or weren’t aware, then we will allow you to celebrate on Sunday instead.

On that note, that’s about all we have room for this week, so it’s time to settle in with another cuppa and watch the fire. Sweets anyone? Please join me in thanking Willow for her invitation to tea. We are all honored that you dropped by today to visit. I hope you’ve enjoyed yourself and the conversation and please look around at Willow’s other posts while you’re here. Willow is over there serving her guests and chatting it up. Let’s go see how she is today. Have a great week. We look forward to seeing you back here for sweets and beverages of your choice again next week.

Afternoon Tea

And of course  the

IF WE WERE HAVING COFFEE:  WEEKEND COFFEE SHARE

over at Part Time  Monster  and Gene’O’s

 

If We Were Having Coffee Guest Post– April 26/2015

Frustration

High tea in Government House in Edmonton Alberta.

Paul your Barista

Welcome to Willow’s weekly coffee and tea garden. My name is Paul, I’ll be your barista today and I’m happy to be here once again. Please come in and make yourself comfortable. Willow has plumped the cushions and started a cozy fire so we can warm ourselves while we have a cuppa and chat. As usual, I’d be pleased to bring a pot of whatever beverage you prefer – we have a wide range of teas and coffees to satisfy our world-wide readership. Also available is a large selection of spirits for addition to your cuppa or in its place. We can relax while we    discuss the affairs of the week both personal and/or worldwide. How has your week been?

So, I travel to dialysis three times a week by a handicap bus. Because it is so often and I am on disability, the bus pass is covered under Health and Safety Services (HSS). For this I am grateful. However, dealing with HSS has to be the most frustrating experience I have ever had. Naturally enough, they want yearly confirmation by a doctor that I still qualify for this service, so they send a form to me for the doctor to sign. I received that form late last week and on Monday, while he was doing rounds, I got the dialysis doctor’s signature. So far, so good. Dialysis is very obliging and has some stake in their patients arriving in a timely manner so they offered to fax the form to the appropriate government office. The form says clearly and unambiguously “… fax to Valerie Gauthier at 613-580-4760” in big letters on the top. So, dialysis faxes this form, attaches the confirmation of fax receipt from the receiving fax at the correct number, to the form and returns it to me. Knowing this department is notoriously incompetent (very kind and considerate and easy going and approachable and very seldom, if ever, get anything right the first time around) I decide to follow up to make sure this form has been received.

Would you like a refill? Perhaps a sweet? On Thursday afternoon, I look up the number for Valerie in the city of Ottawa employee directory, and call. Valerie informs me in a very upset tone that I have the wrong person – she no longer does that. Fine, I tell her that her name is on the form – I hesitate to ask what her problem is. So Valerie kindly gets me the number of my worker and explains that all services are coordinated through her – Diane Miron. So I call Diane, identify myself and explain why I am calling. Diane informs me that she doesn’t take care of that and asks who and what number I faxed the form to. So I tell her the name and number on the form. Diane tells me that the person and the number are wrong – and uses a tone that implies I’m stupid. I object that I did precisely what the form asked me to do. Diane says they haven’t gotten around to changing the form yet and checks the computer. She tells me that the computer does not show that the form has been received and asks when I sent it. I tell her (4 days ago) and she says that Julia Hamilton now takes care of this and that she should eventually get the form anyway. So, I thank Diane and look up Julia’s number. She is not in and I leave a message. So far I have used over ½ hour of my time and city workers time fruitlessly because the form had the wrong info on it. And still I have no answer and the city wonders why their workers’ productivity is so low.

City of Ottawa HSS Building

The following day I received a call back from Julia who told me that the form was no where to be found and that I should re-fax it to 613-580-2790. Of course I don’t have a fax at home so I faxed it that night in dialysis. I impressed upon her that the form had a different number on it and she told me that the form had been revised now, which of course was after it had already been sent to all the applicants. So anyone who got the renewal form this month will not get their bus pass unless they followed up with a call and re-fax to a different number. Oh, and by the way, she informed me that there is a number that I should call in future for inquiries and they will relay a message to her- I  shouldn’t call her direct. How do you do dealing with government departments? Do they frustrate you as well? Do tell.

Another cuppa perhaps? Would you like a sweet, they are very tasty and calorie free. On another note, I was reading an article in The Globe and Mail, Canada’s national newspaper and paper of record (a national newspaper that carries official and legal notices by government decree) about a group of 3 young men who disappeared from a Winnipeg university in the mid 2000’s read  here  They communicated that they were going to join Al-Qaeda. One man was American and he showed back up in the US – extradited from Pakistan – charged with providing help to terrorists. He has since been incarcerated. The Canadian families of the remaining young men had some hope that their sons would be found and extradited as well, but that is not the policy. Apparently, in its war on terrorism, the American government has been getting a lot of flak at home about killing American citizens who are affiliated with terrorists overseas. Consequently, when possible, they capture and return Americans to the US where they are charged and imprisoned. That being said, they do not have a similar policy for other foreign nationals including Canadians – they are killed on sight when appropriate, often by drones.

Ahmad Waseem, left, of Windsor, Ont., was wounded in combat in Syria. John Maguire, centre, is a former University of Ottawa business student who was under RCMP investigation after leaving for Syria last year. Hasibullah Yusufzai, right, is a B.C. man charged with terrorism in July.

So, it occurs to me that the US government is seeing negative backlash at home when it kills Americans overseas – how do they think everyone else feels when other nationalities are killed by Americans in other countries? And their backlash is coming on proven American terrorists, how do they think others feel when innocent people are killed in American raids and activities? The Americans call this “collateral damage” – I call it generating more terrorists and people worldwide who hate America’s foreign policy, military, and government (note the Oxford comma after “military” – a tribute to Doobster’s punctuation lessons.) What do you think? Does anyone (regardless of nationality) who engages in terrorism or collaborates with terrorists deserve to die overseas even if they have not personally harmed anyone? (For example the terrorists’ bakers and confectioners are considered collaborators and are killed on sight.) And what about the innocents who are killed – those whose only crime was to be in the wrong place at the wrong time?

On that note, that’s about all we have room for this week, so it’s time to settle in with another cuppa and watch the fire. Sweets anyone? Please join me in thanking Willow for her invitation to tea. We are all honored that you dropped by today to visit. I hope you’ve enjoyed yourself and the conversation and please look around at Willow’s other posts while you’re here. Willow is over there serving her guests and chatting it up. Let’s go see how she is today. Have a great week. We look forward to seeing you back here for sweets and beverages of your choice again next week.

And of course  the

IF WE WERE HAVING COFFEE:  WEEKEND COFFEE SHARE

over at Part Time  Monster  and Gene’O’s

If we were having coffee: Teeth, family, and everyday

It is If we were having  Coffee  time  again how  are  you all  and  what  have  you been up  to this  week! I have  been  busy  all  month  doing  Love is in  Da Blog   over  at Just Fooling Around  With Bee and  even though I have  found it  very hard at  times  and I have had  to leave  my  comfort  zone I have managed  to make it to the end of  the  month!

So  come in it is lovely  to see you all here again. The fires are lit  the cushions are plumped up and  we have  the coffee and tea on  the go  and the cakes and sweets are all set out.  We  have  tea  and coffee  from all over  the world not to mention all our cakes  and muffins  and  as Paul  calls  them sweets! Every single  one  is  calorie  free! Plus of course  we now have spirits  and liquors  to warm the coldest of  you.

If we were having  Coffee: I would ask  you what  has been going on in your world this week, has  anything  deeply affected  you, have  you need a sympathetic ear, a shoulder to cry  on or  just  needed someone  to make  you laugh! If  yes  feel free to talk it out  here  with us. We will all help if  we can.

If we were having Coffee: I would  remind  you  that  there  are lots of  other  coffee mornings  all shared  and organized  By  Diana  and  Gene’O  over at,Part time monster  

If  we were having  coffee:  It has  been  another  busy  week  we are still decorating  among  other  things  but  the  room is  looking  good and  we are  both pleased  with it.

I have  had  the usual  round of  gym  and classes   plus  shopping  and housework… I  am very  boring  this  week.  If  we were having  coffee: I would  tell  you  how  I had  to  visit  the  dentist  this  week, I have  been having  problems   with  my  second but   end  teeth  top left  and top  right. When I  broke  my  back  five  years  back  I  damaged  them the  force of  my  head  hitting  the floor put  an  identical  crack  right  through the both of  them! Well during  the course of  last  year both teeth  have  developed abscesses and I have lost  them both. Anyway  long  story  short  I  was  going to have implants , well I  knew  they  would  be  expensive  but I  did not realize that  not only  would  they  cost  nearly  £9000 but  it  would  require bone  removed  from  my  hips  to facilitate  the  implants  as  my  gums  are  so  small  and  they have  healed up  very  short.

Well I  am not  a rich  woman  and  though  I  would of liked  implants the  thought of an operation  on my  hips  and  my  jaw was just too daunting. Also  think of  all the  more sensible  things I  could  do  with £9000 pounds! So on Monday  I went to see  the dentist  and  we discussed  my options. Well I am going  for  soft  nylon  plastic  dentures  which will cost £350 pounds…. expensive  still,  but  a much  more  reasonable  price.  All this  for  two  lost  teeth, sadly  I cannot  eat  properly  without   them so  needs  must  when  the devil  drives. I don’t  want  you  to all start calling  me  gummy  behind  my  back!

If  we were having  coffee: I would ask  you  if  you would  like some more  coffee and some cakes.Plenty  to choose  from and all calorie free.

If  we were having  coffee:I would  also  tell  that  my  eldest  sister  is improving  after  having  her  stent  fitted, it  has taken her  a while  to get  herself  back  to normal   but I am happy  to  say  she  really  is on the  mend  now.  My next  sister  who  had  the  shoulder  operation  is also  finally  on  the  mend. She  actually  drove her car  for the first  time  in three  months a huge  thing  for her  as  she hates  to be  at  the mercy  of  asking  others  to take  her out and about.

While  we are  going  through  the litany  of  my siblings  ills  my  brother  ( twin to the sister  recovering   from  the shoulder  operation) is  out of hospital  and home  after  his  foot  operation, he is also on the mend …slowly   but definitely improving. My other  sister  is  still awaiting  her heart  operation  unfortunately  she is not feeling  at  all well  and is  peeved  by  the fact  that  she is having  to wait  so long  for  her operation.

Well that  just leaves  my  last  remaining brother  as as I have  heard  nothing  to the  contrary  I  am assuming he  is  fit  and  well.

If  we were having  coffee: The  boys  are  all busy  at  work  and play  and  the beautiful  Newbie  is  only  10 weeks off  a year old!!I would  apologize  for  not  being  very  dynamic  this  week  but it  has been a long  long  month ! I shall  close  now  and  send  you all my  love  and look forward  to seeing  you all next  week! Lets  go  and mingle  with Paul  and his  guests. Paul  has  always  written us  a beautifully  kind  and insightful  post.

And of course  the

IF WE WERE HAVING COFFEE:  WEEKEND COFFEE SHARE

over at Part Time  Monster  and Gene’O’s

 

 

If we were having coffee: Scans, Orchids and pills!

Hello  and  welcome  come in it is lovely  to see you all here again. The fires are lit  the cushions are plumped up and  we have  the coffee and tea on  the go  and the cakes and sweets are all set out.  We  have  tea  and coffee  from all over  the world not to mention all our cakes  and muffins  and  as Paul  calls  them sweets! Every single  one  is  calorie  free! Plus of course  we now have spirits  and liquors  to warm the coldest of  you.

If we were having  Coffee: I would ask  you what  has been going on in your world this week, has  anything  deeply affected  you, have  you need a sympathetic ear, a shoulder to cry  on or  just  needed someone  to make  you laugh! If  yes  feel free to talk it out  here  with us. We will all help if  we can.

If we were having Coffee: I would  remind  you  that  there  are lots of  other  coffee mornings  all shared  and organized  By  Diana  and  Gene’O  over at, Part time monster   and it is growing like Topsie!

If we were having  Coffee: I would tell you  that it  has been a busy  week  full of  all the usual  things, housework, shoping, going to the gym and classes.  On Friday  I accompanied  the husband  to the  same  National Health  walk in center  that we took  our  neighbour , who  had fallen out of  a  tree, last  week. ( Newsflash  the neighbour  has  three cracked  vertibra and  bruised  ribs! He is a lucky  fellow  not to have been more seriously  hurt. He  has been warned  to take it easy  but  he  is a stubbon  guy  but I  guess  he knows  his own  body)

Good News

Now I was saying  I went  with the husband  to the NHS walk in  center he was sheduled  to have two scans. If remember  I have  been mentioning  how unwell he has been  since  he had an operation on 10 December. Anyway  the scans  revealed  two  problems  that  we were  aware of  and nothing  new  and sinsiter .  This  is good  and  he will see his doctor  next  week  to find out  the best way  forward. So  that  is really  good news!

If  we were having  coffee : I’d ask if  you would  like another  cuppa  or even something  stronger  maybe  or  even some  lovely  cakes  or  biscuits. We do have a vast selection.  Oh!  have I shown  you our Orchids? Now  we have two, a dark  pink one  which  has  not  flowered or even  really  grown  for two years  now   but  which  has suddenly  decided  to  wake up  and be  totally  stunning .  The  second  is a lighter  pink  that  has been in constant flower  since  September.  It is  really lovely  to see these  two  beautiful  plants flowering in our  kitchen brightening  up  out  winter  months.

Here  are  some  photos

Deep Pink Orchid

Deep Pink Orchid

Light Pink Orchid

Light Pink Orchid

Deep Pink Orchid

Deep Pink Orchid

If we were having  coffee: I would  say that I am finding  my  core classes  harder  since  having  dropped one  of  pain killers, Tramadol . I was on 12 x 50 mgs  a day  it has taken  me  18months  to  get rid of  the damn things  and at times I have suffered  terrible  withdrawal  symptoms especially the last two months of  coming off them. I am menally  more  aware   but  the pain levels  have increased  but  I am learning to  cop  with that. I suffer  with constant  pain  but I would of  still be in pain  if I was  still on them   so better  to be in full comand  of  my whits. I do still take Gabapentin  , I have  cut  them  down  from 2 x 300mgs 4 times  a day  to I x 300mgs  2times a day. I am proud of  that  too. It  does  make life harder  but I do  not  want  to be  a zombie , which I was!

If we were having  Coffee:  would like to remind  you  about

A Thousand Voices Speak For Compassion

I heard about it first  on TanGental’s page here   and also on Gene’Os page  here . The idea  is to get 1000 bloggers on the same day to write posts about compassion, kindness, support, caring for others, non-judgement etc.? (Date to be decided.(it’s suggested 20th February 2015) We could call it 1000 Voices For Compassion.Who’s in? I really  would  like to be  but I need to think really  hard  about  what  to write about  but I am  going to think about it  and I am going to take part … If  anyone  has any  suggestions I would  be very grateful to hear them!

And of course  the

IF WE WERE HAVING COFFEE:  WEEKEND COFFEE SHARE

over at Part Time  Monster  and Gene’O’s

 

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