Weekly Blog No 118 – Winter Olympics 2018

This time 4 years ago, I was watching the Sochi, Russia, Winter Olympics in Canada. This year I’m watching the Pyeongchang, Korea, Winter Olympics in the United Kingdom.

Great Britain are not as fortunate in the Winter Olympics for medals as they are blessed in the Summer Olympics.

In Sochi 2014, Great Britain won 4 medals in total. One gold, one silver and 2 bronze.

Liz Yarnold – Gold – Skeleton

Men’s Team – Silver – Curling

Woman’s Team – Bronze Curling

Jenny Jones – Bronze – Snowboarding

I read in the media at the beginning of the Olympics, that Great Britain’s goal was to win 5 medals. I’m glad to report as of today, only day 8 of the Winter Olympics we have won 4 medals. One gold and 3 bronze.

Liz Yarnold – Gold – Skeleton

Laura Deas – Bronze – Skeleton

Don Parsons – Bronze – Skeleton

Izzy Atkin – Bronze – Skis Slopestyle

Congrats to Liz Yarnold for achieving her second consecutive gold medal in the skeleton. Hopefully Team GB will exceed their goal of 5 medals in this years Winter Olympics.

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Weekly Blog No 117 – Suffragettes

Some historical facts about suffragette movement

Suffragette

A woman seeking a right to vote through organised protest.

Suffragettes campaigned to change the law, to grant women the right to vote. On the 6th February 2018, marked a 100 years since women were given the right to vote in the United Kingdom. Although the legalisation was passed in 1918, it was only for women over the age of 30 who could actually vote if they met the minimum property qualifications or were married to a man who did.

Not all suffragists were women, another term used for man and women. George Lansbury resigned as a MP, from the House of Commons over the issue. George was arrested at a suffragette rally in 1913 after speaking in support.

Suffragettes were imprisoned for minor offences for instance protesting, resisting arrest or smashing a window.

The suffragettes in prison went on hunger strike and were force fed, which was invasive, demeaning and dangerous.

The Royal Albert Hall, London was hired for suffragette rallies between 1908 – 2013. They were also the first group to be banned from the Hall due to disruption and costly damage.

Lady Nancy Astor was the first woman to stand for Parliament. The suffragettes were shocked that the first woman elected for parliament played no part in the suffragette movement. She should have won them round by fighting for woman causes.

Weekly Blog No 116 – Goodbye 40’s and Hello 50’s.

I had previously mentioned in a blog that when I was diagnosed with cancer, I put out to the universe, to please let me reach my 50th Birthday. I’m glad to report, I made it. I do believe its a combination of a positive attitude and gaining a knowledge on Carcinoid Cancer.

The last decade was a mixture of excitement and emotions. We moved to Canada experiencing everything Canadian. Then I suffered with my spine and endured 4 surgeries. To add to the emotions, I was diagnosed with a rare cancer. Yet my husband & I continued to enjoy Canadian life with such amazing friends. 3 Cancer ops later it was time to go home to be nearer to my family in UK and Ireland. We have no regrets but my heart is still in Canada. Therefore goodbye to my forties and hello to my fifties.

Firstly I would like to thank everyone who has been telling me I look mid to late 30s. I have to thank my parents Irish genes for that one because its nothing I have done. I haven’t had any invasive beauty treatments or used any special beauty products.

Last week, I was fortunate to have friends come and see me throughout the week. We celebrated with bucks frizz, coffee and tea. There was chatting over a variety of cakes and fresh fruit. I do love a girly gatherings because there is no subject out of bounds and the room is always full of giggles.

Saturday was my birthday and I was showered with birthday cards. Every available surface was covered with cards of love. I got balloons full of helium floated in euphoria. I had flower arrangements, salt and peppered around my house. I was sprinkled with gifts of generosity. The house was full of bliss and kindness.

I’m so so grateful to everyone who made my birthday so special. My 50th Birthday is one I shall always remember. Thank you.

Love to you all. ❤️

Weekly Blog No 115 – 1968 Facts

Historical Facts.

As I was born in 1968, I thought what a better way to celebrate 50 years is to provide some historical facts.

The monarch was Queen Elizabeth 11 and the Prime Minster was Harold Wilson of the Labour Party.

Northampton the county town of Northamptonshire is designated a new town. The prime Minister hoped it will double its size by 1980.

Baggeridge Colliery closure in the Black Country. Ends mining after nearly 300 years.

Mauritius 🇲🇺 achieves independence from British Rule.

London Bridge sold to an American entrepreneur Robert P McCulloch

The Abortion Act 1967 comes into force legislating abortion on a number of grounds with free provision on the NHS.

Commonwealth Immigrants Act 1968 reduces right of entry for citizens from British Commonwealth to the U.K.

Mr Fredrick West (aged45) was Britain first heart transplant patient.

Manchester City won the 1st Div, Football League.

Ronan Point Tower Block collapses after a gas explosion killing 4 people.

The Kray Twins and their brother Charlie were arrested in dawn raids in East London. 18 men were arrested for murder, fraud, blackmail and assault.

Five and ten pence coins were introduced to the run up to decimalisation.

Floods in South West & South East, England.

BBC sitcom Dads Army is aired on television.

General Post Office divides the mail to first and second class services.

The rebuild of Euston Station opens.

The M1 is completed, when the Rotherham and Leeds section is opened.

Tennis player Virginia Wade wins the US Open, Women’s Singles.

Cotton trading at the Manchester Royal Exchange ceases trading.

NHS reinforces prescription charges.

Celebrity birthdays this year.

Heather Mills – Ex Wife to Paul McCartney

Patsy Kensit – Actress

Daniel Craig – Actor

Paul Merson – Footballer

Mike Atherton – Cricketer

Howard Donald – Singer

Adam Woodyatt – Actor

Weekly Blog No 114 – Reuse Christmas Cards

I had the same dilemma last year when I had gathered all my Christmas cards. What should I do with them.

Back in the day you are able to donate them to charity like for instance “Age Concern”. They would cut them into Christmas gift tags and sell them. When I was a child my mum would have me making Christmas gift tags using pinking shears scissors, a hole punch and some string/ribbon. I did ponder should I make christmas gift tags and the answer was yes instead of throwing them in the recycle bin.

Pinking Shears Scissors Christmas Gift Tag

Pinking Shears Christmas Gift Tag

When I looked into some of the equipment to use to make the tags the cost verses new tags was questionable. As christmas gift tags are now considerably cheaper in some places, I did wonder if it was actually worth the effort. Are products too accessible for us nowadays that we no longer need to make items. It seems wrong to throw the cards in the bin, when I have the time to do something practical with them.

Another thought, do we even notice the gift tag. I know we must all read them but do we genuinely take any notice of the tag itself, maybe not.

I’m sure most of us nowadays will regift a gift bag. I will always reuse a gift bag and place on a new gift tag. As I still had some christmas gift money I thought, why not use it on some tools for making the gift tags. I bought 2 different size circle punches, twine and some tissue paper. Not a pinking shear scissors to be seen.

I will purchase plain paper to coordinate with the gift tags.

I have some work to do, like ribbons and twine to finish them off. Do you see a favourite, let me know.

Weekly Blog No 112 – Overview of 2017

It’s been a few weeks since my last blog, due to me recovering from my surgery. I thought I would count how many blogs that I did last year and the result was only 20 blogs out of potential 52.

My health evidently had an impact on me posting blogs this year. I will endeavour to improve that number next year, even if it is just by one. On a positive note, my followers have increased in numbers and since commencing my blog in 2014, the number of views is approximately 12k. Woohoo.

Friends & Family

Thank you to friends and family for your continuous support. I have a huge amount of respect for people that consistently care and support Mr Zebrakat and I. Honestly from the bottom of my heart, thank you so much for everything. Specifically all the people who sent cards, flowers, plants, mags, chocs & sweets, biscuits and messages.

I have to be honest though and say there is a few people on my radar who haven’t fully supported me and that does shock me. In my eyes that can’t be justified why but maybe in their eyes they can, who knows. I’m certainly not going to invest anymore time wondering why.

Lottie (Dog)

She has settled into her new home and loves the garden. Just like in Canada, she likes to sit in the garden facing the sun catching the rays.

She has adapted so well with all the changes we have put her through including the construction on the house.

Thanks to K who looks after Lottie when I’m on appointments etc. Knowing your pet is in good hands is very reassuring and I have gained a coffee buddy too.

New Home

We been here for a year now and the changes to the property are progressing. New windows, stone window cills, shutter blinds, roof lights, guttering & downpipes, new brickwork, forming a new bathroom, knocking walls down, new stairs to loft, chimney removed, new fireplace, loft conversion etc.

The list is endless and I have to thank Mr zebrakat, my brother and nephew for their hard work. Your help to reach our goals has been invaluable and is really appreciated by both of us. Obviously various trades have done certain things but they moderately have been done by family.

Health

I’m sure most of you have read Weekly Blog No 111 – Post Op Update. I’m now 6 weeks post surgery and doing ok. My wound is still being dressed daily by the district nurses and has a little way to go. I’m no longer in pain, nevertheless I am still contending with symptoms that are relentless. No medication at this moment in time is helping but hopefully that will change.

I still haven’t received my post op follow up appointment but my Net Cancer team are chasing it for me. I will have scans again just before the beginning of February before seeing my Net Cancer Consultant. Mr Zebrakat and I have a lot of questions for that appointment but I’m unsure if we will get satisfactory answers.

Despite the endless scans this year, I don’t have complete faith in them. I will continue to listen to my body, which has consistently given me warnings of tumour activity. I think 4 times on the surgical table makes me an expert in some respects. I definitely feel a lot lighter having less organs. Hopefully this coming year is going to be a more healthy year with less issues.

Hobbies

Well, I did have a successful year gardening. My first year of sowing seeds and planting cuttings did indeed produce various fruits and vegetables. I will attempt sow directly into my vegetable boxes next year to see if I am as successful with my crops.

My reading of books hasn’t stopped but I have been completing books at a much slower pace this year. This year I’ve been lucky enough to be in contact with a couple of authors whose books I read. I’m always amazed how they produce such wonderful work with an outstanding imagination. Were would we be without books.

Travel is on the cards next year and optimistically my health won’t prevent me from reaching those goals.

Theatre visits is a must, there is a couple of big shows in London I want to see. Who doesn’t love a musical.

Overview

This year has been quiet challenging, nevertheless I’m still here to tell the tale. I’m so grateful to the surgeon for making me pain-free and possibly extended my life a little. I’ve learned new skills in the garden and been covered in the bottomless pit of dust through building work. I’ve spent quality time with people I love. Furthermore Mr Zebrakat wins the award for husband of the year for his love and dedication as always.

Happy New Year Everyone.

Love to you all. ❤️<<
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Weekly Blog No 111 – Post Op Update

I have just been discharged from hospital after being in for 17 days. Ive had major surgery, right hemi-colectomy, omentectomy and bilateral salpingo oophrectomy due to the pesky dandelions (tumours) again. I’m not cancer free, it’s not a cure, It was purely for quality of life.

On a good note, I’m no longer in the pain that i was experiencing prior to the op, however there is somewhat post op pain and uncomfortableness. There was a few tumours taken out, nevertheless the biggest tumour being 3lb in weight(size of a grapefruit), explaining all the excruciating pre op pain due to its size. I can’t say it’s been easy this time around, after this particular op, I had 2 days in ICU then onto the high dependency ward for 6 days followed by a general ward. I was plagued with pain, vomiting and other symptoms. I will pretty much hesitate to ever go for op no 11. I believe I just coped with all the previous ops so well so I thought I would just bounce back again. In some respects I have in a funny kind of way.

I’ve since had the pathology report as suspected it was tumour involvement in the right ovary, stomach membrane and bowels. I knew something was wrong for a while and have questioned the medical data that was put before me. I will continue to push when I need too. I know a cat has 9 lives but I’m pretty dam sure I’ve exhausted nearly all of mine.

I have a big birthday in a couple months and I will endeavour to celebrate in one way or another. When diagnosed nearly 5 years ago, I had secretly put out to the universe, please let me reach this special birthday and it seems my wish has been granted. Thank you universe.

I need now to rest my weary eyes and turn off the hospital alarm clock, of observations and medication etc. I will be having dIstrict nursing in daily to attend to my wound. Furthermore follow up appoints soon and oncology scans in about 3 months.

I know I’ve said this before, and you’re most probably bored of me expressing it again but I won’t ever apologise for my gratitude for my lovely husband. He has been an absolute diamond and there is no words for his ever ending qualities. Without him I’m sure that I couldn’t handle what is put before me with such strength and determination. Thank you J and I love you dearly.

I would like to personally thank people(mainly family) in the know for my cards, flowers, goodie bags, messages and for feeding my lovely husband. Your kindness and generosity will not be forgotten by us both. ❤️