Our nutty neighbour!

Yes we are one of those people who attracts all the nutters in life, don’t ask me how but it happens.

The latest to our collection is a neighbour, who constantly tries to get in our garden, has an aversion to trainers and will attack on sight. Now this would be totally unpleasant if the neighbour was actually human but alas this one is a tortoise!

It has lived next door for the whole 17yrs we have been in our house and even went missing for a year or two before turning up out of nowhere when they were re landscaping their garden. However, this week his perseverance has gone through the roof as my husband has been working at replacing our fencing between their house and ours.

This particular tortoise will stop at nothing to get in the garden as this picture shows:

He spent ages trying to get through this space getting himself on his side to get through in the end.

He spent ages trying to get through this space getting himself on his side to get through in the end.

But that’s not all, once in he spends his time chasing you around the garden trying to headbutt ( yes headbutt!) your shoes……….. told you it was a complete nutter. So much so we had to video him the other day in action- take a look:

Told you we attract ALL the nutters!

Linking up with Eco-Gites of Lenault  #AnimalTales

ANIMALTALES

Chicago Town Takeaway pizza- review

I am surrounded by boys in this house, teenage boys with the biggest one of all being my husband! Anyone out there with teenagers will know apart from the forced grunts of Hello and Goodbye the only time you see them is when they are down raiding the fridge and kitchen cupboards for food.

Therefore, when I was recently contacted to try the new ‘Takeaway’ style pizzas from Chicago Town I jumped at the chance- let’s face it it’s pizza and generally 90% of what teens will agree to eat anyway.

Although other flavours were available we opted for these two

Although other flavours were available we opted for these two

I will admit I personally am not a lover of frozen pizzas in any shape or form as I find they are overly processed and generally have bases that could break windows. Our favourite pizza takeaway would always be Dominoes and they would generally retail around £15 mark for a large size, which to be honest we always buy 2 large as not only will they eat it that night but they also like a few slices left over for the next day ( see what I mean………..typical teens).

So we were sent some vouchers to go and buy our own choice of Chicago Town takeaway range which are available in most large supermarkets and will be priced around the £4.29. However, when we found our’s in Asda they were actually on offer for £2.97 each which was a great saving from the regular price. We opted for the cheese melt with a stuffed crust and a chicken and bacon with a normal crust, although there are also pepperoni and a sloppy joe variety and a limited edition pulled pork available too.

The biggest difference with these pizzas is the fact that the base is not pre cooked and therefore your teeth will be safe from any crunch damage you would get from a regular frozen style pizza. So when you pop these in the oven it is the first time the dough has been cooked and that in itself helps to keep the dough fresh and soft and very like a fresh takeaway pizza. I was expecting the stuffed crust to have that very processed almost ‘plastic’ after taste with very ‘ketchup’ style flavour to the stuffing but I couldn’t have been more wrong. The sauce that filled the dough was exactly the same as the pizza sauce on the base and therefore just enhanced the flavour and certainly didn’t leave an after taste at all. The dough was surprisingly light and airy and not heavy like you would expect from a deep pan style base.

How they looked when cooked- really resemble takeaway pizzas I think

How they looked when cooked- really resemble takeaway pizzas I think and  great size too for their ‘large’ as you can see

Although we only tried the two flavours I would certainly be looking now to try the others. The price is certainly at the top end of the market and in line with the fresh Pizza Express pizzas that are available from supermarkets, however, as when we sourced ours they were on offer for less that £3! That would mean I could buy 5 of these in comparison with 1 takeaway from Dominoes ( or 3 at full price). Both my teens gave them the thumbs up and said that they would be more than happy to have these when they had their mates around rather than order takeaway as they found very little difference between them.

Overall we were very pleasantly surprised at how nice these Chicago Town Takeaway pizzas were although I think I would be tempted to wait until they were on offer to stock up on a few, but you don’t have to take my word for it why don’t you give them a go yourselves.

 

***DISCLOSURE- I was sent vouchers to try this product however, all views are my own

 

The younger generation do not have the monopoly on disrespect!

Today I had an experience that literally shouted WTAF in my head and left me quite disgusted.

I was in good old Primarni having a nosey when they announced that they would be having a 2 minute silence for the VE Day memorial. Then two workers who looked early 20’s had a discussion what it was for, ‘something to do with the war- I dunno’. I’m not going to lump all of this age group and younger into a generalization but there are some who would think this is a typical response from ‘the younger generation’. However, this was not the shocker of the afternoon.

A few minutes later the 2 minute silence was announced and started, we all stopped in our tracks and the whole shop went silent and even those very few who still wandered originally then stopped too when they realised. Then came the shocker……….

Two women came into the shop ( a fairly large branch too) and LOUDLY started to discuss and question why everyone seemed to be standing still ( several times this was said) and kept walking to the back of the shop until a young lady whispered it was the 2 minute silence. So at this point you are probably thinking they are young, either in their teens or early 20’s…………………erm NO!!!

The first lady was probably late 50’s if I’m being kind and was clearly with her mother who looked around mid 70’s. This was the first shocker, as you would think they would have imediately stopped and shut up………………………….again erm NO!!

They then dumped their shopping bags discussing LOUDLY how they thought it was strange that everyone was standing still, then checked their watches and exclaimed LOUDLY that it was actually 3pm and how the time had just flown past today and they had no idea it was that late in the afternoon already!!! FFS

If looks could have killed I swear the look I gave them could have stopped their hearts at a thousand paces. The older woman surely could have been a baby at the time of the war or even an evacuee, her parents would have certainly had been involved in some way and she would have certainly have been around in the immediate post war hardship and probably had lots of stories to tell. Yet here she was in the middle of a very still and quiet Primarni talking about how quick the day has gone ( not even respectfully whispering) during the middle of the ” MINUTE SILENCE!!!

I have no words to say how disgusted I was without falling into a foul mouthed rant. However, I do now wonder if she has ever uttered the words ‘ The youngsters these days have no respect’.

 

I’m a social outcast!

This has been playing on my mind for some time but really only hit home yesterday when I received an impromptu invite to go ‘up north’ on an overnight road trip with a friend.

I have had M.E now for around 6 years (diagnosed) and slowly but surely it has taken control of my life. I am not able to be as mobile as before, or on the go as much, and I do spend a lot of time in my pj’s not because I’m lazy but because there are days where I will end up back in bed or I just haven’t the energy at all to get in the bath or shower. I do use a walking stick now when I go out as it gives me stability when walking due to the knife stabbing pain I have in my ankle joints 24 hours a day, and my calf muscle feels like it will rip with every step I take. Therefore, the stick is a helpful reassurance for me that I will not lose my balance or fall over which would just be the most embarassing thing for me! On longer days out I will choose to use a wheelchair due to the walking involved ( if we go to a theme park, or when we are on holiday as it saves me spending the next day in bed due to any walking I may do). I HATE having to use both and fought against them for a very long time before I realised that they were actually a benefit to me.  When I have got something to get out for I will adjust my days and rest up beforehand and plan nothing for the day after so I can stay in bed if it’s necessary.

Over time I have seen so called friends fall by the wayside, and invites to nights out or weekends away or days up in London etc become non existent. These so called friends have taken it upon themselves to decide for me that I would not be able to go on these outings. Let’s face it who wants to be stuck with someone with a stick when they have gone out boogying for the night! I have become ‘a hindrance’, a problem, even a disadvantage for them.

What they have failed to consider is on a night out I would never expect someone to have the ‘issue’ of keeping me company at the table while everyone else is on the dance floor. I would actually be very happy to keep an eye on the drinks and handbags with the bonus of having a few minutes here and there boogying on the dance floor ( without my stick) over the evening out. I would still enjoy the night, get drunk as normal, and have fun with friends who are also out having fun. Yes I would be frustrated that I couldn’t be on the dance floor all night but those are my frustrations to deal with, not theirs.

Last night I had an invite from a friend who I do not see very often but am in contact via text and Whatsapp virtually everyday amongst a group of girls who are fundamentally mad as hatters but just brilliant, fun company. I was not left out of her 40th birthday celebrations a few years ago when we all met up in London for a great and fast river boat adventure on the Thames before a bit of a pub crawl and dinner as well. There was a fair bit of walking involved and I popped my pain medications all day long, had a brilliant time and then spend the next day or two in bed, but it was bloody worth it. This friend is organising a road trip up to help support another friend as she opens her own interior designs showroom. She is doing the driving and and she also offered me her bed if we crash on someone’s floor. At no point did she leave me out of the group ( she didn’t have to include me and I would not have been none the wiser), it was just an instant shout out to see who would be around for an overnight jaunt. I am excited to have something organised, sad as that may sound, but even more happy that she did not discount me by making the decision that I would not be able to manage it.

So, my question is why is everyone else making the decision on my behalf to leave me out? I am a sociable person, I love a good laugh, I have no problem making a fool of myself, I love to have a drink with company and can get rat arsed the same as everyone else ( there is no law yet about being drunk in charge of a walking stick!).

It makes me wonder then what people see when they look at me. What do you see?

Thankfully they didn't put all 43 candles on it otherwise my face might have melted!!

 

Wool obsessed………..

I do have a wool obsession and I totally admit to it- but this time I’m not talking about me!

I have 2 cats at the moment and had another before the youngest came  but he unfortunately is no longer with us. My eldest cat Tilly, is 5yrs old and during that time I have always been a knitter, this means I have stashed wool everywhere, and I mean everywhere. However, not once has she bothered to even take it under her notice. Our second cat George when he was alive only bothered when I was actually trying to knit as the slight movement of the ball of wool would be too tempting.

Now our youngest cat, Minnie is a total minx. Not only does she love a ball of wool but she can sniff them out at a hundred paces and can find them and take them for a walk wherever I try to hide them and believe me I really do have to hide them now.

Here she is looking like butter wouldn't melt in her favourite sleeping spot ......

Here she is looking like butter wouldn’t melt in her favourite sleeping spot ……

Do not be fooled by the lazy appearance, she had just worn herself out while I had been out. I came back to find this…..

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Not just the one ball of wool, normally the red one that she finds tucked away under a desk in my bedroom ( that one is like a little surrogate baby to her), Oh no she went to town and decided to get through a plastic bag full of wool that I have been using to make a crocheted blanket with…….

This bag was tied closed with everything inside!

This bag was tied closed with everything inside!

It can be such a pain in the arse at times especially when you are using the wool to make something for someone, but equally it is a bit cute when she sneaks downstairs with a ball of wool in her gob with the strand of wool leading all the way up two flights of stairs!! We have tried letting her have the red ball to play with but she is never satisfied with that and I can find chomped balls of wool downstairs, up on the landing, in the boys rooms, and up a second set of stairs in my room. I need something cat proof……………………… like a whole separate house for my wool stash to be safe ( not sure the hubby would agree to that one though). I suppose it could be worse, she could bring me presents of another kind, like dead things and that would NOT be good.

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ANIMALTALES