News & Tips

Ann’s Monthly Natter: April

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Ann-with-bandWell then, that’s March gone in the blink of an eye – well that’s how it feels to me. The decorating of my bedroom is now complete – what a difference. I’m enjoying shopping for all the little things that give a room some character. I was in the spare room for a fortnight. My lovely cat, Jaffa, had just got used to the new arrangements when it was time to move back! Of course, he took it as a personal hurt when we had to move out but has forgiven me (I think) especially as I knitted him a new purple and cerise blanket for the bed! Sorting through wardrobes was an interesting experience. I think we form attachments to certain items of clothing even though we might not have worn them for some time. I decided it was time for drastic action and my charity bag is now bulging. If it ever gets warm enough, I have an excuse to look for some new summer clothes.

Talking about warmth, my boiler packed up just as the temperature plummeted towards the end of the month. I was without heating for two days. I had hot water through an immersion heater and with two fan heaters and my trusty electric blanket of course, I managed. It got me thinking about my childhood where part of the winter fun was drawing pictures in the ice inside the bedroom windows. We had an open fire in the lounge with an oven set above it in the chimney. During the war, this was invaluable when the gas went off because of the bombing. Now that’s how a jacket potato should taste. Don’t know whether it was the tang of the smoke or the coal but something made it unique. We also had fun roasting chestnuts while listening to Children’s Hour on the radio; so two days without central heating is nothing except that I feel the cold very badly and I’m just a tad older than I was then.

At the risk of boring everyone, just must go back to my hobby horse of the way that I feel my eating habits support my health. Pumpkin seeds contain what seems to be an enormous amount of nutrients – manganese, phosphorus, copper, magnesium, zinc, protein, iron and not least of all, vitamin E. The other attraction is that no cooking is involved. I know this doesn’t suit everyone but it’s interesting to discover that so much of what we eat is good in ways that we might not have thought about.

By the end of the month I’d managed to ‘spring clean’ the garden although much of it was like a mud bath. The ground here is almost pure clay so it’s been hard going. I’m looking forward to planting out in April and watching everything coming back to life. I have been given a cherry tree to be planted in the front garden, so I hope to harvest my very own fruit salad. I have three fruit trees now; apple, Mirabelle plum and morello cherry although I believe the cherries are for cooking only. Think I’m being a bit optimistic in terms of production but certainly the apples were delicious last year.

I didn’t have any problem in choosing an Awareness Day for March. The 6th was World Book Day. I’ve got a passion for the written word and can’t imagine my life without a book. Yes, I know the Kindle is a useful tool and I wouldn’t mind having one myself, but the joy of turning that page is something unique. I also feel very proud of my mother tongue and it’s wonderful to read how other authors see the world through the written word. Also, I volunteer one afternoon a week at a local primary school and it was lovely to be part of the emphasis placed on the importance of books for the next generation on that special day.

My son is starting a new business venture and I have been able to help in a small way by doing some on-line research on the products in which he has an interest. It was fascinating to be back in the world of commerce after fourteen years. Competition is fierce and business is hard won – no change there! He is also in training to cycle from John o’ Groats to Lands End in September. Some challenge eh? I certainly take my hat off to him for that.

His efforts reminded me just how important it is to keep exercising in any form that’s possible. There is nothing like going to a class but I don’t have a problem relying on the DVDs when it’s more convenient (and it’s cheaper too). After all, the class is happening on the screen so it’s still a joint effort, isn’t it? And of course, this weather just invites a walk round the block if nothing else.

Had such a wonderful evening on the 28th. It was our annual tap festival when all the adult classes run by two wonderful teachers come together to celebrate jazz and tap dancing. We always raise funds for a charity and this year £900 went to the thyroid unit at our local hospital. Both teachers are ex-professional dancers so standards are high. Mine excelled herself this year. Having sustained a fractured sternum in a car accident earlier this year, she didn’t let it stop her leading some of the jazz dance routines. She’s a real inspiration (and in her 80’s at that although she looks no more than 60!!). Managed five routines so I took it easy the next day, preparing for the fun that was to follow on the 30th.

March certainly went out with a bang for me. 29th was my son’s birthday, 30th my grandson’s birthday and Mother’s Day too. My daughter invited us all to celebrate at her house on the 30th. I counted nineteen people, and my great granddaughter who is now three months. Together with Oscar and Bert (two dogs) it seemed the dining room was filled with presents, cards and cake but most of all it was the laughter and having the pleasure of my children, in-laws and grandchildren – not forgetting the dogs – round me that made the day. It ended with an invitation to dinner at my step granddaughter’s house, so that was just a bonus. I have to say I ate very little on the 31st, having eaten sufficient for two days on the Sunday – and the rest! Tree surgeons have just finished trimming my neighbour’s maple tree; a sure sign that spring must be with us shortly. I’m looking forward to seeing the world blossom during April.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][mk_padding_divider size=”40″][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_tweetme type=”horizontal”][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][mk_padding_divider size=”40″][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][mk_icon_box title=”Read more of Ann’s Monthly Ramblings” text_size=”16″ font_weight=”inherit” read_more_url=”” icon=”moon-book” style=”simple_minimal” icon_size=”small” rounded_circle=”false” icon_location=”left” circled=”false” icon_color=”#005cb9″ icon_circle_color=”#005cb9″ box_blur=”false” margin=”30″][/vc_column][/vc_row]


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