I was nominated for the Leibster Award by #My Musical and writing life. I have followed her blog for quite a while, as I enjoy reading about musicals and other people’s view on them.

I had never heard of it before, but once I got reading about it I found it quite interesting. A lot of the blogs that I read are around theatre, music and also weight loss and some travel blogs.

Part 1 – A Blog that I love that is not my own

I really like #Hayley Slims. I like the positive tine that she has around her weight loss and the other things that she includes in her blogs. She sounds very much like me in the way that she views her weight and the fact that she posts about slimming world, which was really helpful for me in losing weight.

Part 2 – Random Facts about me

  1. I love to read and like all sorts of books, particularly those that have been recommended by someone else. I have a kindle, which I use when I’m travelling, but I still love a paper book.
  2. I love crafting and am currently setting up my own craft business
  3. I love walking and when I go I know how much good it does me and I know that I should do it more often
  4. I have always wanted to travel on a sleeper train
  5. I love Christmas, but not all the commercialism around it
  6. I hate driving in the snow and ice
  7. I love shoes!
  8. I love baking, but then I want to eat it all, so don’t bake very often
  9. People dropping litter really irritates me
  10. I’m not keen on travelling on boats, but love flying

Part 3 – Questions from My Musical Theatre Life

  1. If you had the ability to sing any song from a musical flawlessly, what would it be and why? – I would love to be able to sing “Tell me its not true” from Blood Brothers. This is an amazing song at the end of the show and so emotional
  2. Which musicals do you think deserve a shout out? – Starlight Express – This was one musical that I was never over bothered for seeing, but when my daughters school gave a production, I thought it was amazing and really started to like it
  3. If you could dance the choreography of any show, what would it be? – I’d love to do Billy Elliot – The dancing in this from all the cast is amazing
  4. Favourite composer? – Claude-Michel Schönberg and Alain Boublil – for Miss Saigon and Les Miserables
  5. Who’s your favourite musical actor/actress – I don’t really have one. I would never go and see a musical with a particular “star” in it
  6. What show should get a Broadway transfer in 2018? – sorry struggling to answer this as I don’t really know which shows are currently on
  7. What’s one unpopular musical theatre opinion that you have? –  Musicals need a good storyline
  8. What’s you opinion on the tony Awards? – I don’t know much about them, I tend to look at the Olivier’s in the UK
  9. What do you think about musical movies? – I was brought up on them. I would watch them with my mum when I was a girl, particularly the older ones like Carousel, Oklahaoma, Oliver etc –  I loved them all and it was away of getting to know the music. I don’t mind them at all, but would still prefer to see a live show
  10. What’s your dream cast for your favourite musical? – I would really struggle to choose a favourite musical. As for a cast, I prefer one without stars and hate it when “celebrities” get parts above genuine musical theatre actors.
  11. Do you have any dream roles and why? – Nancy in Oliver – I love her string character, Mrs Wilkinson in Billy Elliot- such a great comedy and forceful character

Part 4 – Tag other bloggers

#authentically fifty

#Hayley slims

#beauty beyond bones

#the dancer runner

#cooking without limits

Part 5 – My questions

  1. What music would you listen to if you wanted cheering up?
  2. If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would that be and why?
  3. What would be your favourite place to walk or run and why?
  4. If you won a million ponds, what would you spend your money on
  5. What is your favourite item of clothing that you own and why?
  6. If you were invited to a fancy dress party, what would you wear?
  7. Who is your favourite character from history and why?
  8. If you were told that you could not eat a particular food ever again, which food would you miss the most?
  9. If you could live in any famous house/building, where would you live?
  10. What is your favourite food to cook?

That’s it from me. I’m not sure whether I’ve completed this correctly or not, but it’s certainly been interesting for me to do.

Thank you for nominating me

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Feeling Blessed

At the time of writing this blog, I am patiently awaiting the arrival of my great nephew. He is due at the weekend, but I guess that it could be any day now, so the anticipation is growing. This is my niece’s first child and my brother and sister in law’s first grandchild. My niece’s partner already has a boy, who is definitely part of the family, but this is the first baby that we have had for a few years, which is always exciting.

Santa’s little helper

One of the reasons that I feel particularly blessed this week was because I got to see my eldest daughter in London. I had gone to London for a conference and luckily had some free time in the evening. She is currently working as one of Santa’s helpers (I’m not sure she’s an elf, as she’s quite tall), so I was able to go and see her at work. She seemed very happy, along with all the other little helpers.

As a bonus I also got to make a snowman and see Santa in his grotto. I may be a grown up, but there is still something very magical about Christmas, particularly seeing the little children’s faces light up at all the twinkling lights and snow scenes. I know that it’s probably still a bit early for Christmassy things (1st December is probably my limit), but sometimes you just have to take the opportunity that is handed to you.

 

 The Book of Mormon

Also whilst I was in London I finally got to see “The Book of Mormon”. Now I know that this is not everyone’s cup of tea. It is very inappropriate in places and some people may find it offensive, but I have been wanting to see it for ages. Luckily I got to go with my daughter and my friend from work.

I thought that it was hilariously funny. The singing and acting from all of the cast was amazing. It takes the mickey out of lots of different musicals along the way, as well as poking fun at religion. Although I think that for me, there was a moral to the tale, whether that was what was intended or not. I think the moral was that it doesn’t matter what religion you are, or what you believe in, but if you are giving people hope and help, then that is better than converting them to a religion that they don’t really understand and then walking away and leaving people in poverty and danger.

I would definitely see it again if I had the chance, but if you are easily offended, don’t like bad language or feel that religion is not meant to be humoured then I would give it a miss.

 

 

 

 

 

Old Friends and Fat Friends

Dealing with change

This week I went to a leaving “do” for a friend that I used to work with. I left the department almost two years ago, as it was time to move on and have a change in direction with my career. Since then it seems that a lot of my old friends and colleagues have also moved on. Some have moved to other departments, but this particular friend has moved on completely, leaving the job and starting a new career and a completely new direction.

It was lovely to catch up with old friends and colleagues during the course of the evening, but also quite emotional, as it was the end of an era, with the department that I worked in completely changing. The sad thing is that a lot of the staff who work there are very disillusioned and demoralised. It is such a shame as it used to be such a great place to work, with a brilliant team spirit. Hopefully as new staff move in, it will have a new lease of life and will become a great place to work again.

To all those that are leaving, I hope that they find a new challenge and a role that they love and are passionate about. I certainly feel that I have found that in my role, although it doesn’t stop me moaning and getting frustrated at time.

 

Fat Friends The Musical

This weekend me and my husband went to see Kay Mellor’s Fat Friends The Musical at Leeds Grand Theatre. I like Kay’s writing and have enjoyed the different series that have been on TV. I definitely liked the Fat Friends series as it was really funny and was so recognisable by anyone who has ever had a weight problem or attended a slimming club.

The show was really funny. It’s a long time since I heard my husband laugh out loud like that. The cast were really good, with some really strong singing and acting. It was nice to see local actors, particularly Neil Hurst, who we have seen many times in pantomime at Halifax. My only real issue with it was Freddie Flintoff. I know that having a celebrity sells tickets to a show, but there are loads and loads of young people out there who have studied drama or musical theatre that are desperate for work, that I fail to see why an ex cricketer who cant really act and definitely can’t sing, would be offered a role like this.

I know that I am biased as my daughter and many of her friends are seeking Musical Theatre work, but the same goes for pantomimes who have “famous” people in them, with current or former careers (or who are famous for being famous), rather than employing talented actors singer or dancers.

I am also a bit of a theatre snob and find it a bit annoying when someone famous comes on the stage and everyone cheers. Not particularly a problem in the Fat Friends production as it was very light hearted and a little “pantomimey”, but in a serious moment in a production when people screech and whistle, I find this irritating.

At least there was no one texting, facebooking or taking photos in the middle of the performance for a change, which is another pet hate of mine.

A New Challenge

Last week we had a really nice break in Center Parcs on the edge of the Lake district. It was great to get away for a few days. Now that the clocks have gone back, it seems that it is dark when you go to work and when you come home from work, so it was lovely to be able to get out in the fresh air in the daylight. It was nice just to walk and enjoy the scenery and not to have anywhere to go in a rush.

On an evening we played cards and dominoes. I know this sounds very boring and old fashioned, but it was a really good opportunity to chat and have a really good laugh, without everyone being distracted by mobile phones and other gadgets.

On the Thursday my youngest daughter came to visit for the day with one of my nephews. We had a really lovely day. we went in the pool and also went bowling. It was nice to spend time with them, but my daughter would not be persuaded to go down some of the slides, but I did manage to be brave enough to try a couple of them.

Motivation Required

So this week it was back to work. I have to admit that I am feeling a bit restless and out of sorts at the minute. I really need to get back to healthy eating and back to some running or walking, or some other activity that gets me out of the house and into the fresh air.

I’ve managed to make some more crafts. actually I have made quite a lot of things and have set up a page on Facebook.  I have also been invited to have a stall at the reopening of Cliffe Castle at Keighley on 10th December, to hopefully sell some of my products, which I am really looking forward to.

However I do now feel as if I need another new challenge to work towards. I am not really sure what I want to do though. Walking is always much better for me than running, as I wimped out of the last run that I signed up for. One of my friends is wanting me to sign up for a charity walk with her, which is probably a good idea, as this really motivated me last year.

If anyone can recommend anything else that is good for motivation, I’m open to ideas!

Diary of a Wimpy Woman

This week I have been feeling a little bit sorry for myself as I have had cold, a sore throat and now a very annoying tickly cough. Normally I don’t bother about this kind of thing, but I think it gave me a reason (or an excuse depending on how you look at it) not to do the 10k run that I had signed up to. Basically I wimped out and talked myself out of doing it. I feel a bit annoyed with myself now, but at the time, I just couldn’t summon up the enthusiasm to do this.

Blood Brothers

On Saturday evening I went to see Blood Brothers at the Alhambra Theatre in Bradford with my husband and my friend (Funnily enough I wasn’t too ill for this!). I have seen this show quite a few times, but it never loses its appeal. I love the story and the songs are absolutely amazing. The acting and singing from this cast was brilliant and it never ceases to amaze me how the characters change from the first part to the incredible ending.

There are some superb characters within the show. My husband loves this show and always says that he would love to play the part of the narrator. I’d love to play Mrs Johnston. The only chance of this happening is in our own kitchen when we have the soundtrack on and we sing along. It doesn’t hurt to dream!

A nice winter break

So today my husband and I (I sound like the Queen!) have travelled with a couple of friends to Center Parcs at Whinfell  Forest, for a short break. It is quite cold, but its lovely to be out in the fresh air and away from the hustle and bustle of daily life. Today is the first day of the Christmas period for them, so there are lots of lovely twinkly lights and Christmassy things around. It’s a bit early for me, but it actually looks lovely and has a really nice feel to it.

 

Shows and Showers

Life is a Cabaret

On Friday evening I went with a couple of friends to see Cabaret at Leeds Grand Theatre. I have only ever seen the film version before. My eldest daughter had seen the stage version a few years ago and had been really impressed by it, so I thought I’d give it a whirl (Mum, it was amazing… you have to see it!)

The production was excellent and I really enjoyed the show. All the performers were amazing, particularly Will Young and Louise Redknapp. The ensemble were pretty stunning too and showed off some impressive dance talent. I hadn’t told either of my friends anything about it, as I didn’t want to spoil it.

The first half is pretty crazy, set in Berlin, mainly centred around the Kit Kat Klub and its eccentric performers. It’s definitely not for those who are easily offended, but does a really good job at getting the point across.

One of my friends wasn’t really sure whether she liked it or not. However during the second half, the mood changes as the Nazis start to make their presence known, culminating in a pretty shocking ending (even though my daughter had told me about it, I wasn’t really prepared for how gobsmacked I would be).

All in all it was a great show. It wouldn’t be on my list of must see again, but I’m definitely glad that I went to see it. In this age where tolerance (or lack of it) is in the news all the time, it certainly makes you think about how we treat others who don’t necessarily fit in with our ideas of what is “normal” or acceptable.

 

On a lighter note

On Sunday I was invited to my niece’s baby shower. I’ve never been to a baby shower before. They weren’t really around when me and my friends had our babies. If I’m honest I wasn’t really sure what the purpose was, or what would be expected of me, whether I should buy a gift now or later, or both?!

My youngest daughter and I went along to the baby shower, armed with cup cakes with blue icing and appropriate “it’s a boy” toppers. I didn’t really want to take a present for the baby as I want to do this when he is born. I know this is probably an old fashioned view, but that’s just me. We did however take her a little present, just for her, rather than baby.

To be honest it was a really lovely afternoon. It was nice to see everyone and catch up and it was particularly good to see my lovely niece looking so well and clearly enjoying being pregnant.

On the way home my daughter said that it was probably the last time we would all be together for a while, as once she has the baby she won’t want everyone there at once (Sometimes she speaks a lot of sense). I guess that this is one of the purposes of the baby shower, a chance for us to be together, to celebrate her pregnancy and wish her well, rather than everyone turning up within a week of her having the baby, when she is just getting settled with her new family.

Now it’s just waiting and wishing her all the best and lots of love x

Image result for baby shower

Friends and Family

Catching up with friends

On Wednesday I met up with some friends that I used to work with. We went out for a lovely meal and had a really good catch up. At one time we all worked together, but slowly we have all moved on to work in different places, one has even retired.

During my working life, I have met and worked with countless people. It is strange how there are some people that you work with and then never really keep in contact with, you kind of know that all you ever had in contact with each other was work. Then there are others who you really connect with and make sure that you continue to see, even though you no longer work together.

Family Duty

On Saturday I took my mum and dad out for the afternoon. They wanted to go for some shopping and they don’t get out very much, as they are both elderly and neither of them drive. I took them for some shopping and they had a bit of lunch, before I took them back home.

Some weekends I find it really hard to fit in spending time with them. I know that that sounds really bad, but by the time I’ve done shopping, washing, cleaning etc. I feel that my weekend has gone. However at the minute my youngest daughter is helping out by doing some cleaning etc. on the days when she is not working, so this has freed up a little time.

One of the things my dad wanted to buy was a new DVD player. When we got back to the house I offered to set it up for him. After scrabbling about at the back of the TV sorting out wires, I managed to unplug the old one, then found another DVD player that wasn’t plugged in, which was exactly the same as the one we’d just bought. For some reason, they had forgotten buying a new DVD player and carried on using the old one which didn’t work properly!

Anyway they now have a working DVD player and one to return which they didn’t actually need to buy. We managed to have a laugh about it, which was good, but it did make me realise that perhaps they do need a bit more help than I thought.

I also got home and realised that after all that I’d forgotten a few things that were on my shopping list. Perhaps I need looking after too!

 

A Worthwhile Week

Crafts Completed

So I finally managed to complete some of the crafts that I started and I am fairly pleased with them. I have really enjoyed making some Christmassy things. I’ve done some sewing and also some Christmas decorations on slices of wood. I think that they look okay. I’m thinking of putting them on a Facebook page and trying to sell some of them, or even making them to order. I’ll let you know how it goes.

 

A Day At The Races

On Saturday I spent a great day at York races with a group of lovely ladies, to celebrate my friend’s 50th birthday. It was a nice sunny day, which meant that we could sit outside and enjoy the fresh air. Catching up with people that I used to work with and haven’t seen for quite a while was great. I had a few glasses of Pimms and lemonade and bet on a few of the races. I had absolutely no idea what I was doing, so I did what most people do and picked either a name of a horse that I liked, or the colours of the jockey. Needless to say I didn’t come out on top. I managed to win a small amount of money back on the last day, but other than that I lost more than I won.

 

Practice 10k

On Friday my information arrived for The Abbey Dash. When I signed up for it, it seemed a long way away, but now it is only three weeks away! On Sunday I decided to bite the bullet and just have a go at running 10k. I managed to run most of it and it took me 1hour 33 minutes. At least I know that I can do it and make the finishing line. I am not so bothered about the time, but I’m not so worried about not finishing now. A bit more practice over the next couple of weeks and I’m optimistic that I should be able to complete the 10K in under 1 1/2 hours.

Bu the way my calves were really hurting today!

Two out of three

Well a couple of weeks ago I posted about my new goals and that I wanted to start to move on, instead of treading water. Well things went a little bit out of kilter and I only managed to partially achieve two of my goals. I also missed writing my blog too.

I did manage to go back to slimming world and start eating healthier again (although this has gone a bit down hill again!)

I managed to go running three times in a week (again a good achievement, but not kept it up again this week)

I did start some craft projects, but as yet haven’t managed to complete anything.

So what happened?

On Sunday I started doing some craft projects, but whilst using my laptop, I got a warning that I had a virus. I spent ages trying to sort it out, but to no avail. Luckily one of my lovely colleagues at work sorted it for me.

On Monday my husband went into hospital for an operation on his shoulder. Not a problem in itself, as it was planned, but unfortunately in the evening when I was due to collect him from hospital, I developed some kind of sickness bug and couldn’t even get out of the house. Luckily my daughter managed to contact my sister in law, who collected him for me. I wasn’t a very good nurse that night, as wasn’t even well enough to look after myself.

I felt quite rough for the next few days, so didn’t really achieve some of the things that I wanted to do.

Ah well, these things are sent to try us!

Two out of three

A couple of weeks ago I posted about my new goals, Unfortunately last week went a little bit out of kilter and didn’t quite work out as I expected. This meant that I didn’t write my blog last week.

However I did manage to keep to two out of three of my goals:

I did re-join slimming world and started back on a healthy eating regime again.

I also managed to go running three times that week

I did manage to start some craft projects, but have not finished one completely yet, so hence no photograph. Hopefully I will finish it this week and put some photographs on next week.

So what happened?

Well at the weekend I started doing some craft things, but was printing out something from my laptop when I got a warning about a virus. I couldn’t use the computer and spent ages trying to clear it. Luckily one of my lovely colleagues at work managed to clear it for me.

On Monday my husband went into hospital for an operation on his shoulder. This went really well, but at the point when I was supposed to be collecting him from hospital I developed some sickness bug and couldn’t actually go. My daughter managed to contact my sister in law, who thankfully went to collect him. I wasn’t a particularly good carer for him that night as I felt so ill.

I felt pretty rough for the next couple of days, so didn’t manage to do half the things that I wanted to do. The healthy eating didn’t really happen either, as I wasn’t well enough to cook or even eat properly.

Ah well these things are sent to try us!