Monthly Archives: March 2010

>March review….

>So as its the last day of March I though I would look back at the month a little bit.

March has been, mostly, a month of stress. My degree is finishing and that entails a whole bucket of stress that I hadn’t suspected was round the corner. I don’t know why I wasn’t expecting it. You think that I could of worked out that finishing major part of my life for the last three years would come with a little bit of stress, but rather I had just assumed I would be okay. And heres the kicker, I have no reason to be stressed. I have a job, a house and it isn’t a problem if I don’t get a ‘proper’ full time job straight away. Yet this has me stressed to an unreal degree! (No pun intended!)

The flat which J and I are buying, although sorted legally, the build, a thus moving date, keeps on being pushed back. This in itself this is nothing to be worried about, but it does mean that our moving in date now coincides with the week of my final exam. This can be sorted, yet I am still worried. This make no sense. I have no need to be worried, yet still my chocolate intake has increased exponentially as the month has progressed!

My dissertation has also been the harbinger of much stress in my world. It is nearly finished- I literally have about 1000 words left to write. Yet still, it worries at me. I worry that it isn’t good enough, that I haven’t written the right thing, that i’ve missed the point, that my supervisor is going to yell. Stupid worries. Worries that won’t come true. My supervisor would yell in a million years, some one would have told me at some point in the last year if it wasn’t right, if I was missing the point.

So I think that I will categorize March as the month of many little stress. So much so that I have earned the nickname of ‘Angry Lindy’, not an epithet that I want on my grave stone! So here is my pledge. In April I will make a concerted effort to be calmer. To not make every tiny thing a big issue, to not make mountains out of mole hills so to speak. Regardless of my exam, and my dissertation deadline and the impending move I am going to try so hard not to get het up. To be calm. To be happier even.

(I also think i like this review thing, and will try to do one every month.)

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>Allotment!

>So this weekend was all about the allotment. I unusually had the Sunday off of work, so down to the allotment for the first time this year it was. And surprisingly the thistles had not taken over. Last year on the allotment it was a weekly fight against the evils of thistles, but amazingly this was not a battle I had to fight this weekend. (I had prepared my shears and sharpened my trowel!)

(See I did hard work and everything!)

But on a massive plus side I found frogspawn in our pond! I was sure all the frogs had died over winder- but no. There are hundreds of little tadpoles. Its amazing- for the primary school kid in me!

I felt very productive after my work this weekend, my main achievement being that I dug in a raised bed, moved an awful lot of soil and fed some goats! I let J do the hard work of building the planters and actually planting things!

A very nice man who has the plot at the other end of the field very kindly gave me some brussels sprout plants that he was finished with- I just love the community sharing spirit that seems to exist on allotments! So I had some for planting, some for giving to my Dad and sharing the love (he also has an allotment) and some for feeding to the goats.

Don’t judge, but I actually quite like goats. Very friendly animals. (If you ask my Mum she will regale you with tales of how I loved goats so much as a child I tried to give one a hug and it ate my scarf!)

So all in all, a very enjoyable weekend, playing in the dirt!

What did you spend your weekend doing?

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>Saturday Steals

>So i’m continuing on the produce theme for my Saturday Steals this week! Last week it was potatoes this week its carrots!

So my Mum got these carrots on sale for 50p for the whole pack, and she then gave them to me! So technically they’re free to me! You can’t get a bigger steal than that!

So since just telling you about free carrots doesn’t make a particularly interesting post, I thought I would tell you what I made with them. Remember the sweet potatoes from last week? Well not even I can eat that many, so I still had a few left over. Cue the most orange soup you will ever see- Spicy Red Lentil, Carrot and Sweet Potato Soup.

To make this homage to orangeness you will need: 1 onion, 2 cloves of garlic, some red lentils, 6 carrots, 3 sweet potatoes, about 3 pints of chicken stock, garam masala, hot chili powder and cayenne pepper. (Did I mention that this makes an awful lot of soup!)

To begin, mince the garlic and chop the onion in to a stock pot with a little bit of olive oil. Saute them until the onion is translucent. Add to this the chopped vegetables and red lentils and then cover in the stock. Cook until the vegetable are cooked and then blend the mixture. At this point add the spices to your mix depending on how spicy you feel like making your soup. You may also want to add a bit more water as mine turned out a little on the thick side.

Then sit back and enjoy your thrifty homage to orangeness!

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>To do or not to do… that is the question

>So I thought I would share with you what my to do list looked like today. (And they say that students do nothing!)

-Washing (two loads)
-Tidy the living room
-Write 500 words on the dissertation
-Governors meeting
-Crochet panel for blanket
-Read article
-Email uni about the MA
-Apply for job

Needless to say some of that did not get done. Namely the washing. I hate doing the washing with a passion and thus its always the first to go off of my to do lists! (Yet I like having clean clothes- its a war in my head- do I like clean clothes more than I hate doing the washing?… hmmm…)

I shall be back at the weekend to join in with Saturday Steals once more, but as you can no doubt tell the real world has intruded once more in the stressful form of dissertation deadlines and job applications. See you Saturday!

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>Saturday Steals

>Now since I am a student, and thus by definition poor, I love the idea of Saturday Steals being hosted by Camille over at Archive of Our Lives.

Unfortunately I cannot match her broach for prettyness and general coolness of finding. My additions to the wonders of bargains are slightly more prosaic.

Firstly this wonderful book.

I picked it up in a charity shop for the grand total of 50p. Thats right, 50p. I’ve only read the first couple of chapters because real life has intruded this week but it is so interesting. Its a travel dialogue that goes around the world looking for the origins of different paint colours. A surprisingly engaging read for the nerdy amongst us, namely me!

Secondly I brought this book off of amazon for the grand total of £1.26.

Now this made me very happy, because not only was this book cheap it was also crucial to the essay I was attempting to write, and my university library couldn’t get it for me. The other good thing about this find was that the edition I have can sell for upwards of £25, making me feel extra happy with my bargain hunting.

Now my third steal of the week is very boring, very prosaic, and slightly sad that it made me happy!

But I brought this bag of sweet potatoes for only 49p. A boring steal yes, but a good one for my dinner plans! Thats alot of potatoes for only 49p.

So here you have it. The ‘steals’ I got this week. No where near as pretty as Camille’s, but useful to me none the less. Please hop over to Archives of Our Lives to see some of the other great deals people have found this week.

PS: Apologies for the quality of the photos, its a very grey day here today, and I could get no good light!

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>6000 Words

>This ladies and gentlemen is what 6000 words looks like.

This is what has kept me from blogging about my degree more. (I’m ignoring the irony that it is my degree which is keeping me from blogging about it!)

This is what has led to my speedy progress with crocheting as it has become procrastination activity number one.

This is what the last piece of work ever for my course looks like.

All of that said, these have been some of the easiest 6000 words I have ever written. I don’t know why, but suddenly it feels as though my writers block has been lifted. The first semester of my third year was really hard, it felt as though I had to draw every word out of me kicking and screaming on to the page. But this essay- it just flowed, it took a while, but it was actually quite easy to write.

Now that i’ve said that it was easy, I have obviously jinxed myself for finishing the dissertation now… damn it!

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>Crochet

>So this weekend I learned to crochet. I can already sew and knit, so I though I would round out my tripartite of crafty skills! This was brought on by one of my dear friends announcing that this summer she would be having a bundle of joy. Now my friend lives on the other side of the world so this had to be a gift that would be relatively light to post internationally. So I thought that a nice idea would be to make her a handmade baby blanket, living on the other side of the world it would be winter when her baby is born, so this would be quite a useful present as well. Now unfortunately I am a very slow knitter and I am rather time poor at this moment what with the degree and moving and all! So I needed a second option…

So I looked up crocheting on the internet, found out that it was a lot quicker to do than knitting, and though- hey this is the craft for me. So I went to my favourite yarn shop in the world and brought a couple of crochet hooks. On a side note I am very lucky to live in a town with an awesome wool shop. Its run by a little old lady and considering how small the shops customer base must be she sells yarn at a very good price ( for example only 99p each for the crochet hooks!). So she kitted me out with a couple of hooks, I came home and found a youtube tutorial and off I went. And I have to say, it is very easy to learn and very quick to do. In a weekend I managed to learn how to do it from scratch and hook up (is that the right verb??!) the centre piece for the blanket I want to make. Quick, easy and satisfying- my definition of a good craft!

The moral of this story being… learn how to crochet. Oh and another positive is that I can sit close to my lovely boyfriend J and do it, since when I am knitting I do have the unfortunate tendency to spend all of my time elbowing him in the process!

Both picture are of my blanket centre piece taken against the background of my Mum’s sofa… classy hey!

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