Wednesday, 30 September 2015

Wednes-DIY: Loo Roll Autumn Tree

Last week, I kept myself busy during the Great Outage of 2015 by painting.

The background and tree were painted (rather badly, I admit) in acrylic and then the leaves were made using an idea I found on Pinterest: loo rolls.

Mixing the paints made it look rather sloppy. I wouldn't do that if I decide to try this project again. It was fun to do but I'm not sure I'd display it.

Tuesday, 29 September 2015

And then the power died. (text only)

The electrics in Castle Vanian have been a cause for concern for many years. I've spent plenty of sleepless nights worrying about them shorting out or causing a fire. Why? Because the house - and it's an old one! - still had its original wiring.

For twelve years, we were relatively lucky. We didn't burn to death in our sleep so, hey, it was all good. Sure... the lights went out a few years back but we just plugged in lamps and kept going. Sure... we couldn't run the washing machine and dryer at the same time, without tripping the electrics, but you get used to that.

Then, a week ago last Thursday, our luck ran out.

No, there was no fire, but the electrics tripped and wouldn't come back on.


Couldn't have happened at a worse time. With five puppies running around, a buttload of laundry to be done, and the cold weather setting in, losing power was a real pain in the ass.

Then we found out that the whole house would have to be rewired - at a cost of £2,400!


The first two nights were absolute hell. Then, we had the brilliant idea of getting a generator. A gallon of petrol really didn't last long (3-5 hours) - and didn't run much - but it was absolute bliss. We had the generator running from Friday night until Monday night. It was a good thing that work was due to start on Tuesday because one of our douchetard neighbours complained to the council about the noise - even though it was well within EU noise regulations - and we got a nasty visit from them, telling us we couldn't run the generator any longer.

I was not impressed by their visit. They decided they were going to complain about the ''state of our house''. Well, EXCUSE ME. I mean... it's not so easy to clean when you HAVE NO FUCKING LIGHTS. Not that they cared.

Anyway.... The electricians came in on Tuesday and got to work. They were both lovely and friendly. And they did a great job too.

While working in the bathroom, they found our immersion tank (I didn't know we had one!) and got it working. That means we can take hot baths!

Plus, they noticed that the pressure in the shower wasn't great so they fixed that too.

So, after a week and a day of not having power, we're back up and running again AND have hot baths and a powerful shower.


Wednesday, 9 September 2015

Wednes-DIY: Paper Bag Tree

I saw this idea on Pinterest and just had to try it. It's so simple! All you need is a few minutes, a paper bag, and construction paper.

Tuesday, 8 September 2015

Autumn 2015 Bucket List

My favourite time of the year has rolled around again and I already feel better for it. Since I spent too much of the summer feeling blegh, I really want to make the most of these autumn days. Here's how:

1. Pick my own apples. There's a pick-your-own farm not far away and I've been dying to try it.
2. Make apple cider. I miss being able to pick this up anywhere but it's relatively easy to make, at least in small doses.
3. Bake a pie. I've never baked a pie before. Ever. It's about time I did!
4. Make caramel apples. Mmm.... caramel apples. I'm thinking of the sliced, on sucker sticks kind.
5. Have apple butter. It doesn't matter if I make it myself or if someone back home who really loves me sends me some. *hint,hint*
6. Make home made apple sauce. I make excellent apple sauce, if I do say so myself.
7. Visit a pumpkin patch. Or at least a farm selling pumpkins.
8. Carve pumpkins. I keep threatening to make my husband buy me 31 pumpkins so I can carve one every day of October. He thinks I'm joking... Lol.
9. Bake pumpkin seeds. I can't let the autumn pass without doing this; we both love them so much!
10. Eat candy corn until I feel sick. This will require someone sending me some, of course!
11. Make home made soup. I've never done this before, either, but autumn seems like the perfect time for it!
12. Enjoy a steaming mug of hot chocolate. Or two. Or twelve. Wondra's Special Hot Chocolate is the best.
13. Have a coffee date with a friend. I can't remember the last time I did this. It's a perfect time for catching up!
14. Watch my favourite fall movies. And maybe find a few more.
15. Bake cookies. What's better on a chilly day than a melt-in-your-mouth cookie, straight from the oven?
16. Hand out Halloween candy. Even if it's just at school. (We don't get trick-or-treaters.)
17. Do something witchy. This time of the year always makes me feel witchier.
18. Send a letter to an old friend. Snail mail. I lose touch too often, and too easily. I need to start setting this right.
19. Take a long walk. Enjoy the changing leaves, the crisp wind, and the golden glow that come with autumn.
20. Take a scenic drive - with no destination. With petrol prices so high these days we never just go out to go out. It would be lovely to drive around and see how the changing season has affected the rest of the country - if we get the chance.
21. Spend a night watching scary movies. Time to cuddle up under a warm blanket and scare the crap out of ourselves!
22. Watch a football game. American football, of course.
23. Play in the rain. Autumn in Britain is definitely the rainy season. Inside of staying dry, I'll head out and act like a big kid again.
24. Stay warm in flannel. Flannel is so snuggly and warm and it just screams cold weather.
25. Play in the leaves. I love the crunch of fallen leaves and I can't help kicking them up as I walk.
26. Leaf art. Instead of just sticking them in a big old book, it's time to get creative...
27. Photograph the leaves. Although we don't get the vibrant reds and oranges that I'm used to, Wales in autumn is still beautiful.
28. Write poetry. I always get a little more poetic this time of the year.
29. Knit. I'm not a particularly skilled at knitting but now is the time to practice. Scarves for everyone!
30. Crochet. I wish I had about a million crocheted blankets for me and the doggies to snuggle under. I should work on that.
31. Visit a craft fayre/farmer's market. Support local artists, crafters and farmers this autumn!
32. Dress up. I always plan to dress up for Halloween but it doesn't always happen. This year, it will - even if I'm not going anywhere!
33. Make a scarecrow. In time for Mabon. I haven't made one in a couple of years.
34. Upcycle clothes. Especially sweaters.
35. Make doggy sweaters. It's nippy 'round here this time of year.
36. Stock up on fingerless gloves/wristwarmers. I'm thinking that I need to make a whole bunch of wristwarmers and buy a bunch of cheap gloves to cut the tips off of.

Monday, 7 September 2015

Monday's Meme of the Week

This week's meme actually comes from last Monday and it concerns the heartbreaking news of Wes Craven's death.

We lost a horror legend last week. :(

This meme deserves a mention as well, for the feels:

Wherever the journey takes you, Wes, I hope that it is a place worthy of you.

Friday, 4 September 2015

Repost: Autumn Pinboards

I spend a lot of time on Pinterest. (Who doesn't, these days?) I love Autumn. Those two facts, combined, mean that I have a bunch of Autumn themed pinboards for you to peruse and enjoy. Check them out:

Thursday, 3 September 2015

Throwback Thursday

Since this week would have marked James Potter's first day at Hogwarts, this one seemed appropriate:

Do you remember when...

Videotime was turned into Platform 9 3/4?