Saturday, 19 July 2014


Hello everyone, hope you are well and that if you are in the UK you haven't been too badly affected by the overnight storms.  A lot of rain here, but not too much thunder, which is a good thing as last October our street was hit by a lightening ball - it fried our PS3 and the internet router, and knocked out everyone's Sky boxes.  To add insult to thankfully no personal injury, it was just as the winner of Great British Bakeoff was being announced so we all missed the ending!

Anyway, yesterday was the hottest day of the year so far, but we needed to be out and about.  Inhalers packed, we headed off to De Montfort Hall in Leicester

This is why it was so busy on a Friday afternoon:
Yes, we were there for a degree ceremony.  The hall itself is very grand inside...

Here is some detail of the Grand Organ...

The music was fantastic as we waited for the proceedings to begin...

The Senate looked very grand assembled on the stage (I actually performed on this very stage when I was 11!)

You might be thinking that I was there to see one of my kids graduate, but hopefully that will be in the next couple of years.  In fact I was returning to this stage, to collect this:

It was wonderful to be there with my husband and children, all of whom have supported, encouraged and put up with me whilst working on my degree.  I felt like they had all earned it too!  Not to mention friends who have had to put up with me not always being able to see them when I have been up to my neck in work and studying.  Just goes to show, one is "never too old" to achieve something new.  It was wonderful as well to see how many young people were there, picking up their first degrees, just starting out on exciting new journeys. 

So, at the moment I am enjoying having a bit more time to myself, but by the autumn, if times past are anything to go by,  I know I will be looking for something else to study.  But in the meantime, just enjoying the memory of yesterday - still can't believe that I did it!!

Have a lovely weekend, Helenxx

Saturday, 12 July 2014

Schools Out (for summer!)

This picture (courtesy of Google) pretty much sums it up!  Seven weeks of illness whilst working have taken a toll, but the results of all that work has been worth it, it has been fantastic to see the students achieving what we hoped they would achieve.

So now it is time for we teachers to chill out, relax and re-group (and for me to hopefully recover from the bronchitis that has way outstayed it's welcome).

Hope to be back as soon as I have re-gained my energy!


Saturday, 21 June 2014

Midsummer's Day

Hello everyone - here we are on Midsummer's Day in the UK and the sun is actually shining!

After a long, hard week of illness and struggling into work, it is lovely to have time to just relax and enjoy the little things in life.

Blue skies, washing blowing on the line...

Kitchen window sill plants - much-used herbs (the mint is lovely in a tall glass of lemonade, with ice and slices of lime, just the thing to sooth me after another long bout of coughing...

My little aloe plant...

The promise of summer strawberries...

Hanging basket just starting to come into flower...

Beautiful Calla Lily bought as a get-well-soon present for me from my bestest friend...

These were an absolute bargain from the supermarket, three pots for £2.00....

Their perfume hits you when you arrive at the front door.  Love the perfection of each flower...

And the ghostly day-time, waning moon...

Hope you have a lovely weekend, apparently DH is firing up the BBQ later, looking forward to that!


Sunday, 15 June 2014

Aint nobody got time for...

(pic courtesy of Google)

Sadly though, it seems that I do have time for it, as that is exactly what the "under-the-weatherness" has turned out to be - yuk.

Can't even do any crochet due to the incessant coughing fits (just typed gits, which made me laugh, which made me cough again!).  Feeling a little tad sorry for myself :(

Anyway, I am taking the antibiotics and using the inhaler as ordered by the Dr.  Trying not to do too much.  Reading lots of your lovely blog posts.  Hoping that I feel much better tomorrow as I need to be at work.

Hopefully will be back soon with more cheerful things!


Thursday, 12 June 2014

World Cup Fever

Hi everyone, hope you are well and enjoying some sunshine.  I am a bit under the weather at the moment, hence been a bit quiet on the blog front but - excitement has hit the Moonstruck home as the World Cup starts tonight!

I have three sons and one daughter - eldest son is footy mad, and the rest enjoy the big matches.  I have been footy mad since at primary school, and have supported Brazil since 1970 (the great Pele years).  Eldest son has followed in my footsteps, and those of you who have been reading my blog for a while will remember the excitement when we saw Brazil play in the 2012 Olympics.  The skills of the young star Neymar Jr were awesome.  So I arrived home this evening to find that the kids had been busy decorating the room ready for the match tonight - would you like to see?

First up - we have Brazil flag bunting!  You may also note the shirt hanging up, this is quite a small shirt as it is the first one I bought for my son in 1998 when he was 4.  So the Ronaldo referred to is the Brazilian genius (currently the highest ever World Cup scorer) not the younger Cristiano from Portugal.

We also have a mini-football from 98, again celebrating the genius of R9 -

- you can also see the World Cup 2010 Jabulani football peeking in at the edge of the photo.  Interestingly this football was developed at the University in my home town.

Brazil- themed M&Ms have been purchased for us to munch on whilst we watch the match:

and we have a tournament tracker poster, yes I have allowed this to be displayed in the living room!

We all have Brazil shirts to wear as well!  Told you we are footy mad...A lot of people say to me "oh it must be awful having football mad lads driving you mad", but the truth is I absolutely love it!  Funnily enough, DH is not so keen on footy, but will happily watch the big matches.

So we will all be shouting Brrrrrrrrrrrrrraaaaaaaaaaaazziiiiilllllllllllllllllllll!!!!!!

Are you looking forward to the World Cup, or will you take yourself off to do some crafting out of the way?

Have a lovely evening, Helenxx

Sunday, 25 May 2014

Local countryside walking

Hello everyone, seems a little while since I was last here - it has been beyond busy at work and at home, but thankfully I now have a whole week off as it is half term - it is often tricky to work out who looks forward to the school holidays the most, the students or the teachers ;)

Last Sunday the weather was glorious, so DH and I laced up our walking boots and set off for a 6 mile walk around our local countryside.  Blue skies, fluffy white clouds, brilliant green scenery...

 The cuckoo was heard calling it's distinctive song from the woodlands...

 Plenty of hilly walking, good for those of use wanting to get a little bit fitter - although this photo doesn't show how hilly this little country lane is, trust me it is pretty steep!

 Pretty plants dotted the hedgerow...

 Charming little wooden gates leading on to secret, magical places...

By the time we got home it was time for tea in the garden.  Later in the evening my daughter took this photo:

It reminds me of an old song we used to sing at the end of every day when I was at Primary School -

"Now the day is over
Night is drawing nigh
Shadows of the evening
Steal across the sky"

Hope you have a wonderful weekend, and that the weather is kind wherever you are.


Sunday, 11 May 2014


Hello everyone.

Well, after a sunny start yesterday the weather went downhill, with high winds and heavy, squally showers.

DH and I still managed to do our jog around the Outwoods - one half of the lap we had the wind behind us, but on the final left we were battling against it - but we still made it round!

When we got home it was only 7.30 but the rain started with a vengeance, so it was getting dark.  So I popped a candle in my latest charity shop find, this lovely little tea light holder:

It casts such a cosy light around the living room, I just love it.

Darling Daughter had begged to do some baking for a break from her revision routine, and as she asked so nicely how could I refuse?  And just look what she came up with -

A light-as-a feather, fluffy Victoria sponge, sandwiched together with strawberry jam and fresh cream-

It was absolutely delicious, this young lady is turning into a very talented baker.  She really loves to bake and with a household of six, including 3 very hungry brothers, she has plenty of willing tasters!
I was good and only had a small slice, well I am doing plenty of exercise now so a little treat now and then surely is allowed....

We then settled into an evening of watching the Eurovision Song Contest - something we giggle our way through every year.  I don't watch Strictly, X Factor, Britain's Got Talent or any of those shows, but somehow I really enjoy the cheesy, tacky nature of Eurovision!  No stand out songs this year but still a lot of fun.

A busy day ahead, washing, cleaning, shopping, so had better away.

Enjoy the rest of the weekend, Helenxx