Fail to Prepare…

Why is it when you make one little mistake the Universe decides to ensure that this tiny little mistake doesn’t stay small and inconsequential but takes on a life of it’s own until you are left quietly rocking and sobbing uncontrollably in the corner??

Take this morning I had a meeting at work. It was with an external agency and I was as excited as I was terrified. Having any sort of meeting is still a new experience for me and so I have had a few sleepless nights and spent about a week planning every small detail including trying on at least 3 different outfits to make sure I portray the appropriate level of carefree professional. I had Googled the time to destination, found my Sat Nav. Everything was a go.

This morning, I logged out of my computer giving myself at least double the time to get to my final destination. I nipped to the loo, only (and this may be a little bit of an over share) I have inherited my mums ‘nervous tummy’ and so I was slightly longer in the loos than planned. Although a little more stressed as I now only had had 20 minutes to do a journey Google had predicted would take 12 minutes. I grabbed my handbag, my notes for the meeting and a working pen and fled the office. Into car I plugged in my Sat Nav and panicked a little about it’s inability to find the exact location but assumed I would be safe by going to the “center of the area”. It was on an industrial state, what could go wrong?

At this point I did consider heading back into the office to print off some Google directions; something I usually always do, and I still don’t know how I failed to on this occasions! In fact I am usually so panicked that I ‘walk the streets’ to the venue and back with little Street View Man so I know exactly where I am going – I don’t know if it being a local place gave me a false sense of security?? Anyway, for the first time in my life I hadn’t.

I decided not to go back into the office. I knew it would take a while to re-load the computer, download the details and print it all off; especially considering the archaic systems my office currently runs on. Time I would rather spend getting there on time. I knew most of the route and so I thought drive, and then if I can’t find them give them a call on my mobile so that could direct me in.

About 7 minutes into my journey I realised I may be arriving a few minutes late to the meeting, and so I pulled over to give them a heads-up (at this point I was still going for calm, collected professional!) This is when the universe decided to kick me for the first time. I could not find my mobile. Turns out in my hurry to be on time I had left it sitting on my desk. At this point the panic was rising, however in a ‘gift’ from the universe at least my Sat Nav had decided it was going to work and so began to direct my to my ‘destination’. We arrived at ‘the destination’ in record time in fact I was early for my meeting. It would have been perfect only it wasn’t my location. Taking me to the middle of the area based on post code had landed me in a completely different industrial estate, I had no idea where I was, no idea where I was going and no phone to call anyone for help.

I got out of my car and walking into the nearest office building, where two men were sat talking. I told them I was lost and where I was trying to get and it turned out that I was in completely the wrong part of the city. Luckily the guys did know where I needed to go and so he talked me through the directions and drew me a little map. I asked if I could borrow his phone to call the company and advise them I may be a few minutes late. His reaction was comical; I think he may have been less surprised had I asked if I could eat his head. He spluttered out I was only a few minutes away and it wouldn’t take me long, but I kinda pushed the point a little and finally he conceded. Message about my delayed arrival left I thanked the two guys and flew out of their office. Back to the car and set off on the journey. I remembered the first few roundabouts fine but on approaching a set of traffic lights and being unsure as to whether I should go straight on or turn left I reached for the map he had drawn… only I couldn’t find it. I am certain I had it in my hand when I left the offices, but I still have no idea what has happened to it. I cannot find it in my car!

I went with my gut and headed straight across. At the next traffic lights I thought my luck had changed; there was a sign to the industrial estate I needed – I was saved! Or not.

Turns out after the sign telling me to turn left there were no other signs. I creeped along, annoying all the drivers behind me (side note: does anyone else think we should have those flashy message things on our back windscreens that the police have? I would love to be able to flash up signs that said “sorry, I know I’m being annoying but I’m lost” or “I’m driving extremely slowly as I am trying not to run out of petrol before I reach the petrol station as I didn’t have as much fuel as I thought” Just me?)  looking for the sign for the industrial estate – I remembered the guy in the office saying it would appear out of no where in this little housing estate, that I would think I had gone wrong and then it would just appear on my left. I saw a courtyard and looked around (to my left) for the sign. I couldn’t see anything telling me this was anything other than a group of houses and so I pressed on. I assumed that if this was the place I could just double back. I got to the end of the road and realised that the courtyard I had seen had to be the place so did a U-turn and set off back down the road. A man jumped in front of my car waving his arms.

Genuinely, this man went mental getting me to stop my car. I wound down the window and looked at him.; turns out it was a one way street.

I asked him for directions to get back to the beginning of the system and was told I had to go “left, then right, then second left, the another right, over the river…” I think it was about here I lost the will to live!

I would like to tell you that I followed his directions and found the place; bet your not surprised to learn I didn’t.

I gave up and went back to a section of road and knew and found my way back in, only this time pulling into the courtyard.

I was quite impressed to only finally arrive 10 minutes late for the meeting, and although I didn’t share the full horror that I had getting there sharing some of the story certainly broke the ice.

However, the best bit and probably the bit that will have jumped out to the people who I told this story to… turns out the industrial estate is in fact extremely well sign posted and on my way around the one way system for the second time I noticed a lovely large sign point directly at the courtyard; on the right!

Choosing a Username

I don’t know about you but I hate choosing a Username. I always pile too much pressure on myself. I want it to be funny, quirky and original. After all it is how I will be known by many people.  Usually I spend far too long deciding, and massively over-think the entire process. I know you’re shocked aren’t you that I would overthink something.

Anyway, this time is no different. You see I have decided to take the plunge. After a year as officially single I am joining a dating site. I’m not really looking for someone yet, more thinking of it as a way to meet new people and try out new things. I’m mainly interested in some of the single nights this company holds and so thought why not. I have a friend who will be accompanying me on said nights (not that she realises this yet) and so I thought it will just get my social life looking a little more healthy which at this time of year is nothing but a good thing.

So I logged onto the site and started filling in the details. It was going well. I could manage my name, post code, age, that I was a woman searching for a man. Hell, I had even decided on an age range and decided not to settle on age so been very specific about what I did and didn’t want…

And then they asked for my username.

Now more than my username matters. This name and my picture is going to persuade a handsome, charming, great personality, brilliant sense of humour, animal loving, sensitive, none-smoking, active, large… pay check (get your mind out of the gutter!) guy that I am the woman he has waited his entire life for.

I have come up with a couple and rejected them. I think ‘Desperate and dejected’ may have gone and ‘dying alone with dogs instead of cats as cats hate me’ just don’t roll off the tongue! I considered keep it simple and just going with my name.  I also considered using my childhood nickname – it’s kinda cute, fun story and would encourage someone to delve a little deeper to get to know me. I considered using a fake name but I know of someone who did that. She was dating a great guy when a few weeks into the relationship he announced that he wasn’t ‘Harry’ but actually he was an actor called ‘Frank’ and had used a face name so his fans didn’t know he was on the ‘hunt’. (true story!) They never saw each other again.

In desperation I sent off a quick text to my baby sister. I knew she would be there for me in my hour of need, she is arty, with a flair for the dramatic and I knew she wouldn’t let me down. Because she is a complete star, and as fulfilled with her job as I am with mine, she replied within minutes with her suggested username…Free and Easy.

Causing Extra Stress

I have (possibly) had a break through moment, but dear friends I would very much value your thoughts, opinions and two cents on this matter.

Recently  I have been thinking a lot about BDs fear aggression. Following on from his attack he has been doing ok with dogs, although he did go for Mity the other day. They are both fine. BD was muzzled and Mity just squeezed past to him too closely trying to get around my mother and me. It was a bit of a hectic night and I should have found a way to not have them both in my house, but I had no option.

Anyway. Bd has taken to barking at most dogs we see when we walk past them. Turns out it is only with me that he does this. Apparently when he is with my ex he can now walk past all sorts of dogs on the other side of the road, but with me he does this excited bark/jump/yelp thing and almost tries to run at the dog but not in a ‘grrr I’m going to kill you’ manner more a ‘look, look, dog’ excited way. I know that I need to work on this, a large (potentially muzzled) dog barking at your dog does not a happy owner make (he has officially ruined any chances I may have had with the fit young vet, by barking like a loon at the vets JRT which resulted in a very disapproving glare from said vet to me the crazy lady who can’t control her dog!)

But I am not asking for your opinions on that (although any advice you have would be appreciated) No today I want to discuss my obsession with battling through BDs fear to one day see him play with other dogs. Every since I have known BD I have wanted to see him relax around other dogs. I want him to not be scared. I want a confident happy boy. I have once or twice seen him play with dogs. Watching him run around with them was amazing, and the big smile on his face when he was warn out and exhausted was just amazing. But (and here it comes)…

Is this need to see him relax in BDs best interest or just an obsession I have. Is this about BD or me?

When I go out walking with BD he doesn’t care if we meet another dog or not. So long as he has his tennis ball and we are together then he is happy. On the odd occasion we come across another dog (ignoring the lead bouncing for now) we take steps to avoid the interaction; I detour of the path or change direction, we usually pass the other dog without incident and carry on our way. I have learnt how to manage the situation and so has BD. When we are walking in a wood, or somewhere else where BD can be off lead once the other dog is a safe distance away and not likely to run back to try and say hi to BD I will re-remove his muzzle, congratulate him and we carry on.

So long as I have remembered his tennis ball BD is beyond happy. He doesn’t seem to worry that there is no one else around and as we walk out in the country as much as able, there aren’t really any dogs for him to play with anyway. He gets on fine with Mity, and so there is no longer the problem of having the two of them together. On walks they ignore each other and (until the attack) they ignored each other in the house as well. Yes, there were occasions when BD would be slightly concerned to hear Mity ‘talking’ to me and if ever Mity wanted to do crazy dog I would hang on to BD so that he wouldn’t chase Mity as on the occasion I wasn’t fast enough they would both just kinda panic and freeze. Mity would look at BD as if to say “why are you chasing me” and BD would look at him as if to say “why were you running and why have we stopped?”.

If BD is contented, and Mity is happy. Why do I want to push it further?

Am I right to encourage BD to relax around other dogs, regardless of his nerves? Or do I accept him for who he is and let this go?

 

P.S It’s this post Pamela that you inspired!

2 mugs.

I’m going to start by saying I am well aware of how this makes me sound! I am also going to point out that I know this isn’t particularly well written or coherent, but I’ve tried for well written and coherent 3 times and failed so now I am just going for ‘out of my head and published!!’

Walking past the ex’s house this morning (dropping off BD, not a crazy stalker thank you very much!) it appeared that he had laid out two mugs next to the kettle rather than the one that he usually leaves out.

I don’t know how I feel.

Sad – no, not so much.

Happy – let’s not get carried away!!

Relieved – maybe, just a tad.

You see, although maybe not fair, it is easier to think that everything my ex told me is a lie. I know that that is probably unfair to him, and that life is not that black and white. But for me, if he was lying when he said “I love you” then I wasn’t left by someone who loved me. The idea that he could say and mean everything he said and meant terrifies me. It means it can happen again (and although I know it can) it is easier for me if he didn’t love me. If he only liked me a lot well then that means that I wasn’t left by the man who loved me, it means there is a chance that the next one will fall in actual love with me and that the next guy won’t leave. You see the hard bit is supposed to be finding someone who loves you. It’s that bit that is tricky. But love, love conquers everything, it is the strongest bond, the unbreakable bond and if he loved me and still left…

When we broke up he told me that if he couldn’t be with me he didn’t want anyone. If I couldn’t make him happy he was looking at a lifetime alone, and although I would never wish that on anyone (especially not him) when he fines someone new I can mark those comments up as another ‘said but not meant’. It would be yet more evidence that actually it was me that was the problem, I wasn’t enough.

I don’t know how that will make me feel.

I know it will come one day, but not knowing when is killing me. So part of me hopes that that day is today; that the two coffee mugs on the side are a sign that he spent the night with someone.

The other reason I want him to be seeing someone is BD. It would take a very confident, understanding, woman to deal with me continuing to have access to BD. To understand that it isn’t about seeing the ex, but a dog who I have loved for years and continue to love even now. I am terrified that when the ex starts dating someone knew they will put an end to me having visitation right. However, if that has happened today, if he is seeing someone then they are ok with me having BD as I have him booked in for dates right up until Feb when the ex goes away.

I feel this is the last hurdle I have to overcome. I know it will be hard, I know it will be shitty. But I am so sick of feeling it is on the horizon. Plus I think it will be the final kick up the arse I need to, I don’t know. Not move on as the reason I am still single is more a lack of datable men than me refusing to date. But it would be another horrible milestone overcome and survived.

Cat adds value to property

And this is another video that leaves me struggling for words, but for a completely different reason…

 

http://c.brightcove.com/services/viewer/federated_f9?isVid=1&isUI=1

Can you believe it? Just in case the video doesn’t play, the story in a nut shell is that a family has had their house on the market for a while, but have only managed to sell it by agreeing to leave behind their pet cat for the new owners to look after. For a moment i gave the couple selling the house the benefit of the doubt when I thought the agreement was that they would just proved ‘a cat’ but not. This couple are just leaving their cat behind. Grrr just grr!

 

Fancy Pants

In an attempt to save some money I have decided to try and do less washing. When I treated myself, yes I have become the sort of person for whom a new washing machine is a treat! to my new machine I spent a lot of time considering energy rating and spin times. After the look of the thing, it had to look pretty, my main concern was ‘how much will it cost me to run’. I was extremely pleased when I found a very pretty, white machine with a A+ energy rating and it’s shortest cycle is 20 minutes. I was ecstatic and I have to admit to borrowing some washing liquid from my next door neighbour so I could get my first wash in as soon as the machine as installed (yes, I did the installation myself).

My concern came with realising that my 20 minute cycle was in fact a 20 minute refresh and to do anything more meaningful would take about an hour and a half. So i soldiered on with my refresh wash and nothing came particularly clean. I did try it a couple of times and was never fully happy with the results and so I took the plunge and did a longer, hotter wash.

The problem is I am now concerned about spending too much with these longer, hotter washes. So my solution is to limit myself to the number of washes. Originally I was doing 2 loads a week (excluding bedding etc) one would be whites, the other colours. I did it Friday night/Saturday morning and left the clothes to dry in my conservatory over the weekend.

However, with my new wash I have decided to use the ‘wear everything I own an only wash when I have run out’ technique. I’ve only been doing it for a few weeks and so far it has had mixed results. I am washing less, but on occasions the wash has fallen on a school night (which I don’t like as all I want to do after a day at work is collapse) and I now play the ‘where is is’ game a lot more often as I try to figure out if a top is clean and missing or dirty in the bottom of the wash basket – annoyingly I have already managed to loose two black strappy tops. I genuinely have no idea where they have gone!

The other, slightly more interesting side-effect is that I am wearing all of my underwear before putting on a wash, this includes my usual stuff, my slightly old, wripped, really should throw away stuff and more amusingly my ‘best’ underwear which I save for… lets say special occasions. Yep, I am now wearing my best knickers to work.

I am slightly concerned that at some point I am going to bend over and give everyone an eye full of a bright pink, lace.

 

I scooped the wrong poop.

It happened to me again this morning. Yes, that’s my first confession I have scooped the wrong poop on more than one occasion (hangs head in shame) the second is that I may have already shared at least part of this with you, but here’s to hoping your memory is as bad as mine!

The first time it happened it was dark. I had let BD out for a poo and although I thought I had pin-pointed the location clearly I hadn’t. BD is a bit of a pain. He refuses to go on-lead unless desperate (I am working on this) and generally if you move, or breath, after he has ‘assumed the position’ he will stop and you can be out walking the field, in the dark for another half hour. So, he squats and I freeze wherever I am and then have to reward him (again trying to make him better at pooing) while getting the bag out my pocket, moving towards the poo whilst keeping one eye on the spot and the other looking out for any other poo someone else has failed to scoop. Please note, this is not so I can pick it up… I am not that kinda person.

Anyway, the first time I scooped the wrong poop BD has run slightly down this hill and so in the dark I carefully made my way to the area where he has positioned, and I bent down and scooped the poo. I then looked at the poo I had scooped and saw it was filled with maggots. Yep, rather than picking up my dogs poo I had picked someone else weeks old, stone cold and maggot riddled poo. I shudder to this day thinking about it.

After this experience I have always been extra carefully whenever I scoop, I mean it’s bad enough I have to pick it up and usually end up wearing most of it and you want to make sure if you’re going to wear it, it came from your dog.

However, this morning I yet again picked up the wrong poop. BD – it is always with him, can I blame this on him I wonder?!! – had stopped a few meters away, squatted, finished. I threw the tennis ball and told him he was good. Switched on my head torch and walked towards the spot. I always stop a little way away to properly check the ground as I am approaching the spot and was shocked to see I was closer to it than I should have bee. He had done the ‘walk and poop’ technique so I wasn’t surprised to pick up a trail which I could see back to the tall tuft of grass he has started his business on. I bent to pick up the first bit and had a thought of “oh well, at least this will warm my hands a little.” I had thought it would be warm enough to not wear gloves – I was wrong!

However, the first bit wasn’t warm.

Neither was the next bit.

I said to no one in particular “gosh I knew it was cold, but didn’t realise it was that cold” and then I picked up the third piece (am I over sharing?) and that bit was still warm, as was the rest.

It meant only one thing…Yet again I have scooped someone elses poop. Surely this will get me into Heaven right??

And for my next trick……

I didn’t sleep very well last night. I couldn’t drop off, although I don’t really know why, and I woke up far too early this morning with this nagging feeling I had slept through my alarm. I knew I hadn’t, but you know when you just can’t shake that feeling? It seems to happen to me about once a month or so.

I lay in the dark for far long than I would usually. I was staying at my friends house and so unlike at mine where I roll over, check my phone and go back to sleep getting to my phone involved climbing down a ladder (I was sleeping in the top bunk of her daughters room) and navigating a toy covered floor in the dark.  So I stayed in my bed convincing myself I was being stupid and should just go back to bed, it was dark,  I couldn’t hear my friend moving about…..

After a while I decided enough was enough. So I went to check my phone – the time showed 6.59am. I had officially got out of bed one minute before my alarm went off. Would it surprise you to hear I went back to bed? Clutching my phone I climbed back up the ladder to take advantage for the snooze button a couple of times. I lay there waiting for the alarm……

7am. Silence

7.01am Silence

7.02am Silence

7.03am (well you get the picture)

No alarm.

Yep, somehow I correctly predicted that my phone alarm would falter……. I hope I have as much luck on tonights lottery numbers!!

Do you do fancy dress? Betty Boop costume #Review

I don’t know about you, but I always have mixed feeling about receiving an invite to a Fancy Dress Party. I love the idea of them and have even tried to throw one myself, but that massively backfired when everyone started bitching about the theme…. and don’t even get me started on the time I was invited to an optional fancy dress party. Can I just go on record to say ‘option and fancy dress’ should not be allowed in the same sentence and definitely not on the same invite. Now not only did I have the whole, “what do I go as that won’t cost a fortune” problem but I also had the added challenge of going dressed up, but not ridiculously so in case everyone else had decided to ‘opt out’. My original plan for the party (movie and musical themed) was to go as Fiona from Shrek, but there was no way I was walking into the room green to find everyone else in dinner jackets and their best little black dress. So in the end I played it safe and opted for an all in one kit where I became a white Uhura.  

The only thing that made me feel better about the whole thing was that I treated myself to some ‘knee high boot’ covers (which cost far more than they should have) and I spent most of the night showing everyone my boots!

So why might you ask am I sharing this story with you. Well I was approached by Jokers Masquerade and asked if I would be willing to review one of their fancy dress costumes or wigs. I originally said yes hoping they would supply a selection of wigs for me and my friends to trial on a night out, we had a whole night out pretending to be someone else plan all sorted out – that I will tell you about another time –  but the lovely people at Jokers asked if I would be willing to review one of their adult fancy dress costumes.

I have to admit, it was free and by accepting I would double my fancy dress costume collection so I thought why not. They offered me a selection of fancy dress adult and children costumes to choose from and loving the idea of having a wig to try for the above mentioned ‘night out’ I selected Betty Boop.

The Betty Boop costume arrived quickly, and if you visit their site they have a clock which shows you when you have to place your order to ensure next day delivery – which being know for leaving things to last minute I absolutely love.

However, here is where my review takes a slightly negative turn. You see I was sent a standard packet which I know you can get from various fancy dress sites and shops (not my issue) and the few times I have received these packs I have been slightly annoyed. For example here are some pictures of Betty Boop:

 

Now looking at all these images I would say there are somethings that make Betty Boop, well Betty Boop. A red dress, black curly hair, red shoes, a heart shaped garter and gold jewelry. Now looking at the image on the pack …..

Not me!

Not me!

….(excluding the jewelry and adding a small white dog thing) they seem to agree that Betty Boops essence is red dress, black curly hair, heart garter and red shoes. So what did I find in the pack……

Excuse the photo

Excuse the photo

A red dress and a black wig.

So to complete the outfit I have to find or buy gold jewelry, red shoes and a garter with a heart; which I ain’t doing!!

Now I can understand why they don’t supply shoes and hell I can even over look not including any big hoopy gold jewelry (although why some cheap costume jewelry couldn’t be including within the pack I’m not sure). But for the garter to be missing I was a little bit annoyed. If a company is sending out a ‘complete’ outfit for you to become a character then I can’t help but feel that the pack should include everything you need to become the character…. if extras need to be added then why not sell it all separately at a reduced price?

However, that being said something a little crazy came over me and I have to say, when I finally put on the costume I kinda fell in love with it. The dress was fine and fitted me, which I was amazed at as the only other times I have tried on a costume it’s either it too big or too small (I am always the in-between size) and the wig… well I just love it.

I did not want to take the wig off. I was beyond amazed that is fitted as I have huge amounts of hair and I was loving the black curls. I did not want to take the wig off…and may have considered doing DIY in it. I have shared the photo of me in the costume with everyone and anyone and I am now seriously not only considering a fancy dress night out (it’s a must!) but perhaps throwing a Halloween ‘house warming’ party just so to have an excuse to purchase one of their amazing Halloween costumes!

Yes it is purposefully in shadow (well partly, mainly I asked my mum to take it and this happened!!)

Yes it is purposefully in shadow (well partly, mainly I asked my mum to take it and this happened!!)

I would like to thank Jokers Masquerade for sending me the lovely fancy dress costume and the wig (I love the wig) and for being so patient, as it has taken me forever to write this review, but in my defense I have been working on my house (I don’t know what I am going to do for an excuse when I have finished the house!!)

Please be aware, that I did receive the costume for free in order to write my review, but that this in no way affected my opinion (ok, the wig may have slightly I LOVE IT) and that all of the above are my completely honest opinions and views!download1_zps16e15ea5