Tuesday, 30 September 2008

Signs of Autumn

We went to a Red Cross Charity Fruit Picking event. Lots of fruit crumbles on the menu around here. Keep trying to summon the energy to make chutney but not managed yet.

Cheeks bulging with blackberries from our hedge.

Miles helping himself to corn on the cob, raw, straight from the patch. Goodness, look at the colour of those hands *blush*.

Thinking of autumn and the things you gather at this time, I thought of nuts - soap nuts!

Do any of you folks use them? We tried them recently but have concluded that they are only really any good for washing relatively clean things at relatively high temperatures. I do try on the 'green' front but felt the extra heat needed and the re washing things that weren't clean kind of defeated the object. Have I gone wrong somewhere or is this other people's experience too?

Sunday, 28 September 2008


We went to the beach today and Craig helped the children to build a house from wood washed up on the tide. Tied at the top with old fishing nets and seaweed. A draughty design but filled with warmth as the three of them huddled inside watching waves approaching.

Watching him at times like this I feel so pleased that I made the effort despite the torrential rain and walked down the aisle twelve years ago tomorrow. Twelve years on and still tying knots, building, creating...

Goodness, married for twelve years! I feel old!

Tuesday, 23 September 2008


I decided yesterday to venture deep into the bowels of the under stairs cupboard and try to find some useful and educational stuff. That's a tall order - believe me. I had to move the wholefood supplies, mountains of arts and crafts, plastic Christmas tree etc for starters!

Anyway, after all that I found an old set of cuisennaire rods. Not exactly worth the momentous efforts but never mind.

So there we were, Miles and me, sitting at the table making cuisennaire worms (every mathematician must start somewhere). Then we had one of those surreal exchages that you sometimes have with children.

Miles - Mama get da bones out a another date for me please.

Me - Yes Miles. It's called a stone.

Miles - I just been tinking mama, I can't wait to do a bit knitting.

Me - Really?

Miles - Yes. Get da bones out a another date for me please.

Ahhh, some things are priceless.

Saturday, 20 September 2008

The wait is over - for now

We had news yesterday. Not the news we were hoping for. The insurance company have finally reached a decision. They have decided not to honour our claim.

The whole situation will now be turned over to more forensic scientists who will examine our processes again and specialist insurance lawyers who will once again look at the interpretation of certain policy conditions.

Words can't describe how I feel. Money can't buy you love, but by the same token love can't always buy a roof over your head. That's a huge weight for me to adjust to. A home making, home birthing, home edding mama is what I am.

So much to think about. Desperately trying to visualise us like a phoenix rising from the ashes (quite apt eh?) but struggling to do so just yet.

Tuesday, 16 September 2008


My mate Fiona would have been proud of me yesterday. After much recent chat about 'stagnation' I decided to muster the energy and clear out some summer stuff in order to make space for autumn. Baby steps in the clearing process - certainly not so organised as to be 'recycling' my old books on Amazon Marketplace yet - but I've made a start.

Away went the dinky china tea set, steel watering can, punch bowl and other trappings of summer. Out came the pumpkins and the start of this years seed pod collection.

I dug up some snowball onions. Not what you would call a bumper crop but pleasing all the same.

I picked lots of sweetpeas, one of the last strong signs of summer in our garden.

We messed outside eating blackberries and elderberries straight from the bush whilst trying to think 'abundant enzymes' as opposed to 'abundant maggots'. Perhaps I should have popped in and given them a wash??

Whilst on the topic of abundance, I'm going to light a candle tonight and focus on abundant communication from our insurer - well one communication would do to be honest - one which means we can keep our home and our staff keep thier jobs.

Friday, 12 September 2008

Ah well...

...here we are at the end of another week and still no further forward. No decision on liability. No certainty. No payments. Nothing but stress and more stress.

I found myself referring to certain sectors of the financial services industry as operating like 'Dick Turpin without a mask' today, but then I recalled all the work I did with Trudy last night about forgiveness, acceptance and joy and made a conscious effort to be more positive.

Thankfully no more jobs have been lost this week but as for whether we'll manage to pay the remaining staff next week will have to be seen *sigh*.

Do you know that the Financial Services Ombudsman receives approximately 7,000 complaints a day yet has a staff of just approximately 65. Whats more they can only order a firm to pay a token compensatory gesture - nothing to reflect or represent the real cost of the firms actions or in actions. No the wonder the industry is as it is.

Edited to add I almost forgot to mention about a quantum drawing site I stumbled across this week by Barry Hoon. It's good. If quantum drawing is your kind of thing then get yourself along there. There are drawings to print off free of charge and they're good - although quantum drawing isn't really my thing as it makes my eyes go all wappy *grin*

Monday, 8 September 2008

Credit Crunch Britain

Still feeling like crap here but had to laugh at this which was sent to me by a friend today.

Thank you to everyone who commented below. I'm still slogging on here. The whole horrible issue is taking me to places I've not been before. As well as the usual group of insurance type blokes I've also spoken to three Members of Parliament today, liaised with the various industry press offices about an article which I have written about the situation, plus other odd folks. Goodness, I will be so glad when this is all over. I'm on a personal mission now to save our staff's jobs, (those that have not already lost them due to the ongoing issues with our insurers), and our livelihood.

To think that I once had respect for the Financial Services Authority. You live and learn huh?

Wednesday, 3 September 2008

Feeling blue

Feeling very blue.

Can I have a moan here? I don't want to moan at home as we're all in the same boat - a boat we're all trying to keep afloat which kind of means not moaning and trying our best to look on the bright side.

I was thinking the other day, what would happen if the LEA came to visit some time soon and I had to explain that the children had spent the last few weeks messing, watching telly, playing on the computer and stuff while I chased brokers, loss adjusters, forensic scientists, underwriters etc. It took me a day or two to realise that frankly I couldn't give a monkey's chuff what the LEA think - but more importantly I'm absolutely devastated about it.

At the risk of appearing to wallow I'm going to say that it feels like a whole lot more than our business, bricks and mortar went up in flames that day.

The Financial Services Ombudsman is now investigating the situation for us. Hopefully we'll see progress soon although the underwriters seem to just laugh at them as well as us.

On the plus side, (yes there is a plus side to all this), the jeans which were cutting me in half a month ago now not only zip up with ease but also would have room to tuck in my jumper were I inclined to do so. Not that I do tuck in my jumper, of course!