Football Crazy


Not many of you will know this but I was delighted to be offered the position of England Manager yesterday.  Obviously, I accepted.

This offer came after the sudden resignation of Fabio Cappello who had struggled to take the team to victory during his time as manager.  I have one or two theories as to why this was but I think the most glaring fault was his inability to say “At the end of the day” or “The boys dun good”, both ESSENTIAL phrases within the footballing world, I am sure you will agree.

Anyway, I don’t want to go on about what Cappello did wrong as it is time for a new phase in the life of the England team.  


I have already ordered the pink kits (to be worn at away matches) from Sportsdirect online. I’m expecting them any day (prioritising).

I’ve been shopping for my Press Conference outfit and I have stood in front of the mirror practising my football talk.  Things like, “It was a game of two halves” and “Sometimes in football you have to score goals.”

I am assembling my team and am taking guidance from several close friends who I am likely to appoint as my helpers.  Most of these are keen for Beckham to play but they all want to supervise in the showers so I am a little suspicious of their motives.  I am not sure they have the best interests of the game at heart…..However, we all agreed we will ban spitting and doing that ‘snot’ thing out of your noses.

There was some talk yesterday in the office – yes, I’m going to be a part-time manager. It can be done (not by Harry Redknapp, as some have suggested, as he needs all his strength to take my beloved Spurs to the top, obviously).  However, I am a woman so I can multi-task and I see no problem with doing the day job, fitting in my evening classes AND popping down to see the boys a couple of times a week.Anyway, the talk in the office (with my MALE colleagues) centred around my lack of knowledge of the game, in particular, tactics.  

Look, ok, it’s true, I am not an expert on football tactics. I know what the word ‘formation means’ and I know you have to beat the other side.  I also understand the offside rule, just for the record, although I’ll probably ignore that as it seems to stop a lot of goals getting in.  No, I don’t know everything about football.  But I do like being in charge of things.  And I can spot potential.  And I know how to motivate people.  Personally, I think that is what we need now.

I leave you with a quote from the late, great Brian Clough, one of my favourite ever football managers (apart from Ron Manager, pictured below):

“Players lose you games, not tactics. There’s so much crap talked about tactics by people who barely know how to win at dominoes.”

So, bring it on!

I shall be announcing my team later this week. Providing I haven’t got bored and given the job to someone else in favour of becoming a ballerina or something……..

What I Love #1


I think I can include this next post under the LOVE heading.  It is, after all, something I love…..It could have fitted in nicely with last month’s theme too though, of motivation.  But I wasn’t actually doing it then so it will be fine here…..

What am I on about?


Those people who know me well may have had to read that a couple of times to make sure they hadn’t misread it.   You didn’t. I said EXERCISE.  I love EXERCISE.

For years, I have found it hard to keep myself motivated to do anything physically taxing.  I have been known to park as near as possible to anywhere, to avoid walking and I positively hated the gym.

But, something happened last month. I saw the light.  And now, I am a keep fit convert.  

A Born Again Exerciser.

I’ve had phases of doing different types of exercise, it’s true.  I enjoy badminton and I don’t mind swimming (apart from the getting changed and the getting in and out of the pool. Oh, and the swimming). But recently, something has changed.

I took up a new hobby, burlesque dancing.  I’ve only been twice but I’ve found my ‘thing’.  I love it because, not only do you prance around in a provocative way, looking alluring and sexy (in my head, in my head, ok??) but you also get to wear frou frou outfits, with feathers and lace and SPARKLY bits.  What could be more fun??  I don’t really care about the dancing bit, I just LOVE the attire!  But the dancing is the exercise.  So I’ve cracked it.

However, the more surprising thing, for me, is that I LOVE the gym now.  Well, maybe not the gym exactly, but my personal training sessions.  This love of training was sparked by a television series that is on currently, Fat Fighters (not Fat Losers as I previously wrote. Oops!).  Prior to this, I paid to have a trainer but I dreaded going.  Watching the programme, I was suddenly inspired.  And I texted my trainer to sign up again.  I now go religiously every Saturday morning, a time that suits me.  I realised that planning to go after work was the reason I hated it.  It’s too late for me and the traffic meant I was always stressing about making it in time.  I now get to have a little lie in on a Saturday before going to the gym and waking myself up properly.  It’s great!

But the main point of this post really is that I have a totally different attitude towards exercise.  Instead of being something I HAVE to do to be healthy or lose weight, it is something I do because I WANT to….

I love that

(That’s not actually me in the cocktail glass.  But it could be, one day!)

Be my valentine?


I went shopping for a Valentine’s card the other day.  Well, I was actually on my way to pay for my parking ticket after a gruelling session at the gym but I had to walk past Clintons and I decided to pop in.  I have a bit of a card fetish, I think it is fair to say.  I never buy ONE card.  I tend to buy about twenty quid’s worth…..I just love cards!  Funny cards, selected with someone in mind, for an occasion when I need to send that someone a card.  I keep them for ages until the right time to send them comes.  I often forget I bought them though and go and buy another card for said person. Therefore, I have a lot of cards stashed away….

So, anyway, on Saturday I went into Clintons.  Obviously, they were well into the swing of the Valentine promotion, with fluffy wuffy teddy bears clutching hearts, heart emblazoned mugs, heart-shaped key rings, heart-shaped boxes, heart-shaped balloons, heart-shaped EVERYTHINGS!!!

And lots and lots of cards…

Maybe I have never looked this closely before but, this year, alongside the usual Valentine cards to wives, husbands, girlfriends and boyfriends, were cards to partners (good idea I thought), cards to soul mates (hmmm, that’s not bad either), cards from the dog or cat (um, now you’re losing me), cards TO the dog, the cat, the grandparents, the grandchildren, and your teacher…..


What’s going on?  Since when did Valentines Day expand to include anyone AND their dog??

It’s all got totally ridiculous.  I remember when I was young, it was all about the anonymous card from the secret admirer.

Now, it’s just become yet another way for the card industry to make more money…..

For the record, I will NOT be buying the dog a Valentine card.

(I hope he doesn’t get me one now, I shall feel really embarrassed)

Love is………

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Today is the 1st February, which I have decided is LOVE month on my blog, in keeping with my pledge to have a theme per month throughout the year.

I have no idea what I will blog about yet.  I’m sure I’ll think of something though, since the word love can mean so many different things to different people.

So, while I’m thinking about what to write about, here are some words I found that might inspire me……

I Love my Motivation!


Well, we are almost at the end of January.  My initial resolve was to take part in the 365 Project and post on the same theme for a whole year.  I chose motivation but quickly realised that I’d bore myself, let alone my readers, if I posted up about that for a WHOLE YEAR!!  So, I decided to adapt the idea and post on the same topic for a month.  I also allowed myself not to post every day.  I pretty much abandoned the 365 Project in fact!

Anyway, I have, more or less, posted motivationally themed stuff throughout January, I think, and I intend to end with a summary of how my own motivation has helped me to keep up my fitness training and started all the other things I said I would do.

Or rather, that WAS the intent

Unfortunately, I’ve just returned from a slap up meal of Tapas with copious amounts of wine and I really feel a bit of a fraud talking about how determined I am to eat healthily and keep fit.

Although I did go to a personal training session at the gym this morning. AND I have been walking regularly. AND…and this is the bestest AND….I have joined a burlesque dancing class.  So far, I’ve only been to the taster session but I’ve signed up for the full six weeks.  It’s so much fun!   The challenge for me is how to look alluring whilst trying to follow the steps.  Not quite there yet but I’m hopeful!  Anyway, I highly recommend it as a fun way to exercise.

And, joking apart, I am really enjoying my exercise, whatever form it takes.

The Italian classes are great fun too, not too hard but I’m learning new stuff.  It’s fun doing the class with KD who has a fantastic accent and we practise our new words during the week so I fully expect to be fluent by the end of the course (well, I hope to be able to order wine and food at least. Or just the wine even….).

As for the other projects I had intended to pick up on, well, the photography is slow. The weather has been poor and I have yet to find the subject that inspires me….but I will. I am a frustrated photographer.

I have not done any more drawing and I have totally forgotten about the needlecraft apart from a brief spell (one evening) where I got out the knitting needles for half hour.

Still, it’s only January.  Eleven more months to achieve my goals!

I have decided to make my theme for February ‘Love’.


Not sure what I’ll post yet but isn’t that the beauty of it all?

Ciao Belle.


Fuzzy Eyes


I am having trouble focusing this morning.  I mean,literally, focusing.  Everything is a little bit blurry.   I sometimes find that my eyes take a bit longer to wake up than the rest of me but this is much worse than usual.  I have cleaned my reading glasses at least three times in an effort to clear my vision but to no avail.

I can only surmise, therefore, that the problem lies with my sight.

I have fuzzy eyes…..



I am just in the middle of cooking a bolognaise sauce for our meal tonight.  It’s one of the few dishes I cook these days, KD being the masterchef in our house now.  

Talking of Masterchef, I love that programme.  We’ve been glued to our seats all week watching the contestants as they strive to stay in the competition.  There is something compulsive about viewing people get it wrong.  I much prefer this programme to any of the professional cook programmes that are on…..

Anyway, while I was checking on the bolognaise, I had a flash back to when my children were small.  I think my daughter would have been about 4 or 5 and my son just 2 or 3 years old.

A favourite pastime of theirs was to pull up a little chair just by the kitchen door and watch me cook dinner.  However, I wasn’t allowed to simply COOK the dinner.  I had to provide a running commentary of what I was doing, in the style of a TV chef.  I haven’t a clue what TV programme we would have been watching at the time but it clearly had an impact on my children.  Well, I say children…from what I can remember, my daughter organised the whole thing and my little toddler son just did whatever she told him to do.

It is a happy memory, me talking them through every stage of the preparation, as if I was talking to a camera.  Silly but fun.  I wonder if they remember it?  My daughter (now 29) has been a very good cook for as long as I can remember.  My son tells me he can also cook but I have no experience of that, so I have to take his word for it!!!!  I wonder if their early lessons with mum are the reason?



Rouge Nipples


I have a few different methods for remembering topics I want to blog about.  One is to jot it down in the back of my diary.  Another is to use my dictaphone to say a couple of key words and the other is the ‘notes’ feature on my iTouch.

I haven’t actually used this iTouch feature for some while now but I thought I’d just check and see if there are any ideas outstanding that I might want to turn into a post here.

I have five things listed, as follows:

Rouge Nipples



Fabulous business idea


Now, I can remember what the music prompt is to do with and I will blog about that one day.

As for the others, I am totally clueless.


Whatever could I have been thinking about???

I’m even scaring myself there…..

I am the milk monitor


This month it is my turn to buy the milk and biscuits at work.  Everyone takes a turn and, for that month, whoever is charged with the task doesn’t have to pay their subs.

It’s actually a bit of a faff.  People are very picky.  They demand certain biscuits and they have milk preferences too.  Keeping the biscuit tin and the fridge stocked up with the right kind of milk can be very stressful.  There is also the nuisance of having to remember to go to the shops before it runs out (particularly if, like me, shopping is not normally in your daily routine).  I shall be glad when my month is over…

Anyway, whilst standing in the queue at Sainsbury’s, waiting to pay for three packs of choc chip cookies, three packs of Hob Nobs, six litres of semi-skimmed and six litres of skimmed milk,  I was put in mind of the old days at primary school, where we used to have milk monitors.

I doubt that these exist now – do they even hand out milk anymore?  I don’t expect so….

Years ago, we got free milk every day.   Little glass bottles, miniatures of the pint bottles left on our doorsteps.   This was in the sixties, when I was very young.  In those days you could get different coloured foil tops on milk – silver, red and gold.  Gold top was full cream, I know that and we didn’t get that in school.  I think we just got the silver top which I think was full fat and then the red top came in later, as semi-skimmed.  I’ve looked this up and there are a lot of different answers so I can’t be sure now!!!  There was also the special christmas foil top with little holly leaves on it I recall.

Anyway, the milk used to sit there by the door until break time and whoever was milk monitor handed it out.  In the summer, therefore,it was disgusting, warm and sickly.  I hated it.  In fact I’m surprised I can even drink milk now, along with millions of other children who grew up experiencing the trauma of having to drink slightly-off milk!!  I only drink skimmed milk now and I’m sure this is why!

So here I am again, the milk monitor for January.   I miss those  dinky little glass bottles.  Even though they made me feel sick….

There’s no accounting for taste…..


I just had to share this as it constantly amuses me to see what people have typed in their search engine to end up at my blog:

This is a list of last weeks searches (the number of times the search term was used is in brackets):

stationery  (30)

fish and chips  (12)

high heels walking (3)

snoopy picture

gym (2)

books and stationery (2)

stationery items

beholder with glasses

snoopy driving

project 365


365 project

traditional england food

office stationeries

stationary item

fish & chips



cheeseaholics anonymous

fish & chips images

stationery items

images with name

italy knitting blog

i gave up smoking

I have blogged about these topics or included images in one form or another but it is still WEIRD how many stationery hunters there are out there….and ‘beholder with glasses’?  What’s that all about?  We won’t even go down the ‘high heels’ route….actually this week’s search terms are pretty tame compared with some!

Suffice to say I expect many of these searchers are mightily disappointed when they arrive at my blog!