Sunday, 30 November 2014

The Sunday Prayer

Dove of Peace by Pablo Picasso


Father, Mother, God,

Thank you for your presence during the hard and mean days.
For then we have you to lean upon.

Thank you for your presence during the bright and sunny days.
For then we can share that which we have with those who have less.

And thank you for your presence during the Holy Days.
For then we are able to celebrate you and our families and our friends

For those who have no voice, we ask you to speak.

For those who feel unworthy, we ask you to pour your love out in waterfalls of tenderness.

For those who live in pain, we ask you to bathe them in the river of your healing.

For those who are lonely, we ask you to keep them company.

For those who are depressed, we ask you to shower upon them the light of hope.

Dear Creator, You, the borderless sea of substance, we ask you to give to all the world that which we need most.....PEACE.

Maya Angelou

Friday, 28 November 2014

Thursday, 27 November 2014

Here I am again.....

Medical Illustration Showing Inflammation
in Human Back Area


...back on co-codamol "sigh"

I have been having pain in my left leg for a few weeks now and when I saw my GP, she confirmed that it was sciatica as I had suspected.  She prescribed naproxen, an anti-inflammatory, and said to come back if it wasn't helping.  I thought things were starting to ease but decided to book a telephone appointment to ask for a further prescription as my leg was still pretty painful, even though the back pain wasn't so bad.

By the end of last week, though, the pain in my back had returned and the pain in my leg (like the most excruciating pins and needles you can imagine) was as bad as ever.  So, I went to back to my GP surgery and saw another doctor ~ who only looked about 18!  I guess I must be getting old LOL  Anyhoo, she was very good and examined my back/leg and confirmed, once again, that it was still sciatica.  Because of the pain she decided to try me on a low dose of co-codamol since the paracetamols I've been taking haven't really helped.  She is also writing to the hospital to request a new MRI scan.  I had one when I was hospitalised with a prolapsed disc five or six years ago, but the pain was all down the right-hand side then.

I've only been taking the co-codamol since Tuesday evening and so far the pain is still just as bad.  I'm hoping that things will improve soon as I don't really want to have to start taking higher doses of medication.  The worst of it, in some ways, is the lack of sleep.  I'm in pain and just can't seem to find a comfortable position to sleep in.  This morning I got up at 3.30am and went downstairs to sit with the dogs for a while!  I have managed to have a nap this afternoon, thank goodness; I guess I'll just have to grit my teeth and rearrange my sleeping habits for a while!


The Thursday Poem

Potted Flowers with Books IV
Eric Barjot


Words

Axes
After whose stroke the wood rings,
And the echoes!
Echoes traveling
Off from the centre like horses.

The sap
Wells like tears, like the
Water striving
To re-establish its mirror
Over the rock

That drops and turns,
A white skull,
Eaten by weedy greens.
Years later I
Encounter them on the road -

Words dry and riderless,
The indefatigable hoof-taps.
While
From the bottom of the pool, fixed stars
Govern a life.

Sylvia Plath
(27th October 1932 - 11th February 1963)

Wednesday, 26 November 2014

Words on Wednesday

Alphabet Overlay 1


Any man can stand adversity; if you want to test a man's character, give him power.

Monday, 24 November 2014

A cautionary tale...

image from clker.com


In a nutshell, my husband and I have been gullible and naive ~ me more than him since I actually dealt with the guy concerned and should have known better.

Last week, a guy rang on our doorbell and said to me that his company did the work on our neighbour's drive and they were now canvassing for new jobs.  He asked if we would like our block-paved drive cleaned, sealed and re-sanded, and they would also lift the blocks that had dipped, and quoted a price.  He assured me that we would get everything in black and white, and we could pay by cheque, credit card or cash.  I said that I would speak to my husband and get back to him if we were interested.  He left me his mobile phone number, saying that it was better to contact him on that number as it wasn't always very easy to get through to the office.  There and then I should have been alerted.....but I wasn't.

We decided that since our drive was looking pretty weedy/mossy/grubby, it would be a good idea to have the work done, especially since the company had made a good job of our neighbour's paving.  I telephoned the guy and he told me that he would come out the following day to do the power-washing and would be back to do the sanding and sealing when it was all dry.  I should have checked it all out with the office of the company concerned but I didn't.....I naively took the guy at his word.

He came out with a younger guy and they did the power-washing.  The original guy certainly had the gift-of-the-gab and told me that some of the edging blocks needed to be re-set and more blocks needed to be lifted as there were even more dips visible than it had at first appeared.  I could indeed see the dips he was telling me about and I phoned hubby at work to ask if we should have the additional work done ~ naturally for an additional price.  He said to go ahead and get it all straightened out.

The upshot of all this was that although the guy told me that they had rectified the dips it has become obvious since all the rain we had over the weekend that they did no such thing.  He also changed his story about the sealing, telling me that the sealer was applied after the power-washing; they also brushed sand over the blocks on that same day.  He had asked me for "some cash" to go and get the sand as it was apparently dry enough for them to complete the job but I told him that I didn't have any.  He accepted this without making a fuss and got the sand.

He also wanted me to let him clean the pvc siding on the side of our house and paint our guttering but I said no.  I was suspicious by now but didn't really know what to do to be honest, especially as I was home alone.  

When the work was supposedly finished, he again asked me for cash.  I told once more him that I didn't have the cash and didn't have that amount of money in my bank account.  He agreed to come back on Saturday morning to collect the money after hubby had been to the bank ~ he wanted cash, naturally, despite what he had originally said.

By this time we were sure he was a conman and managed to get hold of the company he purported to work for.  The chap there said that he didn't know the guy and asked for his mobile number to talk to him.  He phoned back to say that he couldn't get hold of him but agreed to come over in the morning when the guy was coming to collect his money.

As you have probably guessed by now, things turned rather nasty the next morning.  The guy phoned to check that we had got his cash and when hubby said that he wasn't going to pay the whole amount as he hadn't done the job properly, he became very angry and threatening.  He said that if he came over he would end up hitting my husband and if we didn't pay, then he would get his workmen ~ who he told us were from one of the gypsy sites ~ to come over during the night and throw black paint over the drive.  He eventually agreed to take less money than he had originally quoted and said that he would send one of his men over to collect it.

We phoned the police because of the threats but were told that they couldn't do anything unless the guy became violent or any damage was caused.  The policewoman also said to my husband "don't you watch Crimewatch?" which in the circumstances wasn't particularly helpful!  The chap from the company we spoke to didn't show up and didn't return our phone call; we suspect that perhaps he did know this guy and didn't want to get involved.  When hubby had confronted the guy about not working for this company at all, he said that he was a sub-contractor for them.  The young man who collected the money (who had done the power-washing, etc) also said that they sub-contracted for this particular company.

I guess there are some of you who feel that we shouldn't have paid up but we felt extremely intimidated.  My husband is not a big chap and is almost 56 years old ~ I certainly didn't want him getting hit and I didn't want our son to get involved in anything violent, either.

We both feel very foolish and can't believe how gullible we were ~ and yes, we have read many stories in the press about such things happening.

Neither of us will ever take anyone at face value again... 

Sunday, 23 November 2014

The Sunday Prayer

Dove of Peace by Pablo Picasso


Father, Mother, God,

Thank you for your presence during the hard and mean days.
For then we have you to lean upon.

Thank you for your presence during the bright and sunny days.
For then we can share that which we have with those who have less.

And thank you for your presence during the Holy Days.
For then we are able to celebrate you and our families and our friends

For those who have no voice, we ask you to speak.

For those who feel unworthy, we ask you to pour your love out in waterfalls of tenderness.

For those who live in pain, we ask you to bathe them in the river of your healing.

For those who are lonely, we ask you to keep them company.

For those who are depressed, we ask you to shower upon them the light of hope.

Dear Creator, You, the borderless sea of substance, we ask you to give to all the world that which we need most.....PEACE.

Maya Angelou

Friday, 21 November 2014

Thursday, 20 November 2014

The Thursday Poem

Potted Flowers with Books IV
Eric Barjot


Sonnet 116

Let me not to the marriage of true minds
Admit impediments.  Love is not love
Which alters where it alteration finds,
Or bends with the remover to remove:
Oh no, it is an ever fixed mark
That looks on tempests and is never shaken;
It is the star to every wandering bark,
Whose worth's unknown, although his height be taken.
Love's not Time's fool, though rosy lips and cheeks
Within his bending sickle's compass come;
Love alters not with his brief hours and weeks,
But bears it out even to the edge of doom.
If this be error and upon me proved,
I never writ, nor no man ever loved.

William Shakespeare
(23rd April 1564 - 23rd April 1616)

Wednesday, 19 November 2014

Words on Wednesday

Alphabet Overlay 1


You can be young without money but you can't be old without it

Sunday, 16 November 2014

The Sunday Prayer

Dove of Peace by Pablo Picasso


Father, Mother, God,

Thank you for your presence during the hard and mean days.
For then we have you to lean upon.

Thank you for your presence during the bright and sunny days.
For then we can share that which we have with those who have less.

And thank you for your presence during the Holy Days.
For then we are able to celebrate you and our families and our friends

For those who have no voice, we ask you to speak.

For those who feel unworthy, we ask you to pour your love out in waterfalls of tenderness.

For those who live in pain, we ask you to bathe them in the river of your healing.

For those who are lonely, we ask you to keep them company.

For those who are depressed, we ask you to shower upon them the light of hope.

Dear Creator, You, the borderless sea of substance, we ask you to give to all the world that which we need most.....PEACE.

Maya Angelou

Friday, 14 November 2014

Thursday, 13 November 2014

The Thursday Poem

Potted Flowers with Books IV
Eric Barjot


from The Jungle Books
Quiquern (chapter heading)

The People of the Eastern Ice, they are melting like the snow-
They beg for coffee and sugar; they go where the white men go.
The People of the Western Ice, they learn to steal and fight;
They sell their furs to the trading-post; they sell their souls to the white.
The People of the Southern Ice, they trade with the whaler's crew;
Their women have many ribbons, but their tents are torn and few.
But the People of the Elder Ice, beyond the white man's ken-
Their spears are made of the narwhal-horn, and they are the last of the Men!

Rudyard Kipling
(30th December 1865 - 18th January 1936)

Wednesday, 12 November 2014

Words on Wednesday

Alphabet Overlay 1


Business is never so healthy as when, like a chicken, it must do a certain amount of scratching for what it gets.

Tuesday, 11 November 2014

In Remembrance...

Fields of Poppies, Valley of the Somme,
Nord-Picardy (Somme), France

 
By: David Hughes

For the fallen

With proud thanksgiving, a mother for her children,
England mourns for her dead across the sea.
Flesh of her flesh they were, spirit of her spirit,
Fallen in the cause of the free.

Solemn the drums thrill: Death august and royal
Sings sorrow up into immortal spheres.
There is music in the midst of desolation
And a glory that shines upon our tears.

They went with songs to the battle, they were young,
Straight of limb, true of eye, steady and aglow.
They were staunch to the end against odds uncounted,
They fell with their faces to the foe.

They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old;
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning
We will remember them.

They mingle not with their laughing comrades again;
They sit no more at familiar tables at home;
They have no lot in our labour of the day-time;
They sleep beyond England's foam.

But where our desires are and our hopes profound,
Felt as a well-spring that is hidden from sight,
To the innermost heart of their own land they are known
As the stars are known to the Night;

As the stars that shall be bright when we are dust,
Moving in marches upon the heavenly plain,
As the stars that are starry in the time of our darkness,
To the end, to the end, they remain.

Laurence Binyon 

(10th August 1869 – 10th March1943)

Sunday, 9 November 2014

The Sunday Prayer

Dove of Peace by Pablo Picasso


Father, Mother, God,

Thank you for your presence during the hard and mean days.
For then we have you to lean upon.

Thank you for your presence during the bright and sunny days.
For then we can share that which we have with those who have less.

And thank you for your presence during the Holy Days.
For then we are able to celebrate you and our families and our friends

For those who have no voice, we ask you to speak.

For those who feel unworthy, we ask you to pour your love out in waterfalls of tenderness.

For those who live in pain, we ask you to bathe them in the river of your healing.

For those who are lonely, we ask you to keep them company.

For those who are depressed, we ask you to shower upon them the light of hope.

Dear Creator, You, the borderless sea of substance, we ask you to give to all the world that which we need most.....PEACE.

Maya Angelou

Friday, 7 November 2014

Thursday, 6 November 2014

The Thursday Poem

Potted Flowers with Books IV
Eric Barjot


One Art

The art of losing isn't hard to master;
so many things seem filled with the intent
to be lost that their loss is no disaster.

Lose something every day.  Accept the fluster
of lost door keys, the hour badly spent.
The art of losing isn't hard to master.

Then practice losing farther, losing faster:
places, and names, and where it was you meant
to travel.  None of these will bring disaster.

I lost my mother's watch.  And look! my last, or
next-to-last, of three loved houses went.
The art of losing isn't hard to master.

I lost two cities, lovely ones.  And, vaster,
some realms I owned, two rivers, a continent.
I miss them, but it wasn't a disaster.

- Even losing you (the joking voice, a gesture
I love) I shan't have lied.  It's evident
the art of losing's not too hard to master
though it may look like it (Write it!) like disaster.

Elizabeth Bishop
(8th February 1911 - 6th October 1979)

Wednesday, 5 November 2014

Words on Wednesday

Alphabet Overlay 1



Patience, money and time bring all things to pass

Monday, 3 November 2014

Diary of a Dieter...

by Roy Williams


I thought I would bring you up-to-date with how things are progressing on the 'ole weight-loss front :-)  I'm very pleased to say that since my last post on the subject, I've reduced from 22st 9 3/4lbs down to 22st 4 1/2lbs on the scales this morning.  Not bad, eh?  I shall just continue as I am, not following a plan as such but being sensible about what I eat nevertheless.

Unfortunately, in health-related news, things aren't quite so rosy as I've got a horrible flare-up of sciatica again *sigh*  I have been having acupuncture treatments closer together, along with taking anti-inflammatories prescribed by my GP, to try to nip it in the bud.  Thankfully my back isn't as painful as it was but the pins and needles (and a certain amount of pain, too) in my lower leg and big toe still continues.  I was surprised to discover that it isn't at all unusual for the pain/pins and needles to "skip" a section of leg ~ my thigh is pretty much okay!

I suppose it's rather like shutting the stable door after the horse has bolted, but I am doing the exercises again I was given by the physio when I had my prolapsed disc a few years back.  The exercises are definitely much less painful to do the longer I've been doing them, so I think that must show that they are doing some good LOL  I must try to keep up with them this time, though.

I have also finally decided to take the plunge and am having a one-to-one session with a Yogalates teacher this week.  I will let you know how it goes!  

Sunday, 2 November 2014

The Sunday Prayer

Dove of Peace by Pablo Picasso
Father, Mother, God,

Thank you for your presence during the hard and mean days.
For then we have you to lean upon.

Thank you for your presence during the bright and sunny days.
For then we can share that which we have with those who have less.

And thank you for your presence during the Holy Days.
For then we are able to celebrate you and our families and our friends

For those who have no voice, we ask you to speak.

For those who feel unworthy, we ask you to pour your love out in waterfalls of tenderness.

For those who live in pain, we ask you to bathe them in the river of your healing.

For those who are lonely, we ask you to keep them company.

For those who are depressed, we ask you to shower upon them the light of hope.

Dear Creator, You, the borderless sea of substance, we ask you to give to all the world that which we need most.....PEACE.

Maya Angelou