Thursday, June 28, 2007


Three weeks to go:
- Visit from School Improvement Partner
- Japanese Week open day
- Perform at World Music Festival
- Residential trip to outdoor activity centre
- Modern Foreign Languages Festival
- European Enterprise Festival
- Sports Days
- Summer fete
- Leavers' performance
- Parents' evenings (three)

Then holidays!

We've running towards the end of Japanese Culture Week - we've made kites and sushi, fans and woodblock prints, haiku and manga.

Maybe I should have made these.

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Raindrops on roses

Wish you could smell these!

The garden is loving this warm, wet, wet, wet weather we're having. Everything looks clean and green. Some of the towns around here are suffering a bit though. We drove back from a conference at Hallgarth Hotel on Friday, through axle-deep water on some of the main roads. 15 miles away, at home, everything was dry. We were driving back early, as a lightning strike had knocked the power out and it's kind of pointless having an IT conference without power...

Of course it's raining. It's Glastonbury! It's been years since we went to a festival. Used to go all the time. Too old and crippled for camping now :) Intolerant of mud, crowds, lentil curries and insanitary toliets. Don't do drugs or drink. We'll watch the highlights on Sky Plus. It's official - we're middle aged!

On the knitting front: I'm learning to love Krista. I bought her an aubergine camisole and pair of linen trousers to sit on top of - and I'm much happier about her.

On the needles:

This is going to be another Shapely Tank or Tee (haven't decided yet). I love the sheen of this mercerised cotton.

Garden roundup:

Giant Aliums

J bought 4 old brass jam pans and planted them up with annuals

Green vortex in the centre of one of the tree ferns

Note to our resident blackbird: these are mine!

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Don Don Doko

Doko Don Don Ha!

This has been running around in my head for the last couple of days! It's not madness, but the first line in the chanted rhythm of a piece of Taiko drumming we're learning at school in preparation for Tees Valley Music's Festival of World Music and Culture on 1st July in Preston Park .

We've been working with these guys - I've borrowed this picture from their website:

The drums are large and loud and I've been blown away by how satisfying and releasing the whole process is! Needless to say, I hurt badly as a result, but worth it.

The piece we are learning is called Fujin and Raijin - The God of Wind, The God of Thunder; appropriate given the weather we're having currently.

Sunday, June 17, 2007

Two posts

in one day...

This list was published by a contributor on the Fybromyalgia Association UK forum boards. It's a compilation of the symptoms of FMS. Sometimes a whole group of them gang up on me all at once.

Please understand, this isn't a self-pitying post :) - it's just interesting. Do you remember those books you could get - 'The spotter's book of... and the Observer's book of... series? We always had them as kids to keep us busy on journeys. I'm thinking about strating one for us fibromites! Tick off the ones you have and keep an eye out for any new ones!

__ recurrent flu-like illness
__ recurrent sore throats, red and infected
__ painful lymph nodes under the arms and neck
__ muscle and joint aches with tender and trigger points - up to 18 of them
__ night sweats and fever
__ severe nasal and other allergies
__ irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
__ weight change - usually gain
__ heart palpitations
__ mitral valve prolapse
__ severe PMS
__ yeast infections
__ rashes and itching
__ uncomfortable or frequent urination
__ interstitial bladder cystitis
__ chest pains (non-cardiac)
__ temporomandibular joint dysfunction (in the jaw)
__ hair loss
__ carpal tunnel syndrome
__ cold hands and feet
__ dry eyes and mouth
__ severe and debilitating fatigue
__ widespread pain
__ other chronic illness(es) usually present (like diabetes, hypoglycemia, asthma, lupus, ms, etc.)
__ numbness in the limbs, not painful like pins & needles
__ painful swelling in the hands, legs, feet, neck
__ GERDs (gastro-esophageal reflux disorder)
__ “growing pains” start in childhood and teens, continue into adulthood
__ widespread body pain during/after physical exertion

__ attention deficit disorder
__ spatial disorientation
__ calculation difficulties
__ memory disturbance
__ communication difficulties (problems speaking, confusing words)

__ depression
__ anxiety and panic attacks
__ personality changes, usually for the worse
__ emotional lability (mood swings)

__ sleep disturbances
__ headaches
__ changes in visual acuity
__ numb or tingling feelings
__ burning sensations
__ light headedness
__ feeling 'spaced out'
__ desequilibrium
__ frequent unusual nightmares and disturbing dreams
__ tinnitus (ringing in the ears)
__ difficulty in moving your tongue to speak
__ severe muscle weakness
__ susceptibility to muscle, tendon, ligament injury
__ intolerance to bright lights
__ intolerance to alcohol
__ intolerance to sound
__ extreme sensitivity to medications and their side-effects
__ alteration of taste, smell, and hearing
__ insomnia
__ inability to achieve stage 4 restorative sleep
__ morning stiffness in the muscles and joints
__ restless leg syndrome
__ muscle spasms
__ muscle quakiness and shivering during/after activity or exercise
__ sleep paralysis (related to stage 4 sleep deprivation)


Oh dear, it's been a while, hasn't it?

My excuses: school reports - some to write, then about 400 to read through and sign; other problematic and general Summer term things at school; the need to help j revise for some exams; lots of paperwork relating to J's business and a bit of a Fibromalarkey flare leaving me no energy to do much beyond work, the essentials at home and sleep.

Roll on the Summer hols. We have no plans to go away, as J's business is always very busy in the Summer months, but I plan lots of relaxation, some knitting and a pile of books.

I finished Krista and I hate the sleeves. I'm also not keen on the fact that it is going to need something under it (see pictures below - no head as baaaad hair day)

I do love the colour and the yarn, however - may have a rethink and frog it or may adjust the sleeve caps a little and save it for autumn with a camisole under it.

Garden is luscious at the moment - these photos were from before the torrential downpour of the past two days.

And the chap who makes it all happen: