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CFM Babs from Chorley FM


Marathon Mum!

Posted by CFMBabs , 21 August 2008 · 596 views

Never mind the Olympics -- I have a gold medal in morning marathons. I seriously believe that I do a pentathlon event, which incidentaly is 5 things being derived from the Greek numerical number penthe (5).

On trying to lie in a little this morning, I suddenly remembered that it was the day my trash can gets emptied. I jumped up, fell over trying to get my leg into my jeans, thus waking my daughter who moaned from her room. "What are you doing?"

I uttered a few choice words as I ran down the stairs! It was raining for a change as I tread carefully down the drive to avoid all the muck from the Geese and Chickens, I didn't have time to change footwear from my fluffy slippers. I had an enterage of animals behind me and with my hair stuck up on end, I was a serious contender for the scarecrow event which happens on the 5th of Sept each year. In fact I'd go as far as to say that the vehicles passing my gate had begun judging my live entry which I should win by a mile!

I dragged my bins to the front of the gate and in the distance I could hear my phone ring! It wasn't even 8.15 and I'd completed at least 3 events already. I knew the phone call would be from my dad, so I rang him back once indoors. The usual "What time are you coming over?" was the first thing he said. Truth is I'd hardly had time to plan anything from slumber to rushing around all in the space of 10 minutes.

"I'll ring you back."

I guessed that all I needed right then was a cup of coffee and with my daughter entering the room rubbing her eyes, I duly put the kettle on! It had hardly boiled when the phone rang again. "Not Grandad again," I moaned to Steph. I picked up the reciever and said "WHAT?" There was a slight pause. A strange voice hesitated and then spoke. "Can I speak to Steph?" It was the place where Steph sometimes does a little work. I handed the phone to Steph who was whispering, "Who is it?" Anyhow, they wanted her to go to work this morning and I could tell from her face that she wasn't impressed.

It was 8.30, I hadn't sat down, had my coffee or changed my footwear. Steph was running around and occasionally shouting instructions. The phone rang and I ignored it! Too much to take in 15 minutes, 16 minutes ago I was in bed and at this rate I was going for a world record.

Steph went off to work, the phone continued to ring and I wasn't doing anything until I'd had refreshment. The Cat was meowing, the Dog yapping, the Chickens clucking and the Geese were looking through the window -- it was breakfast time!. I sank into my chair rather guiltless with 18 blue beady eyes all peering at me. The Dog continued to yap and the Cockerels crowed, but I was having my coffee no matter what!

With the TV switched on, the sound of the national anthem played in the background, we'd won a medal for rowing, but it somehow felt as if it was for me! 9am and all was quiet. Time to give the animals their breakfast and I might just get back into normality.

Who said I was ill? Sclero or not life goes on!......


Eyi Eyi Oh!

Posted by CFMBabs , 19 August 2008 · 680 views

If I have to mention that I live on a farm once more I may explode into song such as Old McDonald! Whenever the need arises to give out my address, I am almost certainly asked for my house number firstly to which my reply is "It's a farm," and then the usual question is: "Yes but what's the house name?"

"It doesn't have a name as such, just the name of the farm". What usually follows is "Oooh, how lovely."

Now I can think of many lovely things but living on a farm isn't one of them. Interesting it may be and sometimes even tolerable, but lovely -- No! Imagine leaving a trail of goose droppings in every shop you venture into and the unapproving looks you get from a staff cleaner who's just finished polishing the floor. The embarassment of someone vaccuming the entire area after you leave, I'm not surprised if they get out the air freshener as well just to add more indignity to the situation.

The novelty of 12 chickens following you out of the drive and the trail of cars that stop to take in the situation, is almost the highlight of the morning. There's the daft dog who intends to clear the area of anything that moves on two legs. Then in a frenzied moment, the one where it runs around in circles barking, follows me half way up the hill. I instinctively accelerate as fast as I can to avoid the thing, and it kind of gives up the chase as I hit 40mph! I'm not a cruel person, especially where animals are concerned but I sometimes wish they'd all do one!

The cockerel's daily 5 am crowing competition has me turning my face into my pillow and groaning. The geese begin honking in response, and then there's the usual yelp as the dog gets bitten on the backside as it tries to pass the gaggle. Not exactly the serene nature of a dawn chorus but we get our own version!

The postman leaves the mail at the gate in an old drainpipe, who could blame him after all the marathons he's had to run in the past. And if a stranger wanders into the yard, you can be sure he won't return, if he ever get's out that is. To make matters worse, a half-finished house does not help much in the way of comfort when you have a huge hole in your gable end. The wildlife simply comes indoors for shelter and it's a bit off putting when sitting on the toilet to be gazed at by a swallow perched on a beam. It puts a whole new meaning on bird watching -- are they now watching us? Even more so when you have a goose welcoming you down the stairs first thing in the morning! I have a vision of a goose paddling around in my bath if I happen to run one and then go downstairs. Why not? it's probably the only thing that hasn't happened yet!

I give out my address very cautiously! This idyllic picture that most people paint isn't all it's cracked up to be. Would I live anywhere else? MMmm!


Dreams and Envy

Posted by CFMBabs , 17 August 2008 · 627 views

Reading Barefut's blog took me back to the days in Greece which I long for and upon getting my own way, I will be back there in a couple of weeks. I couldn't help but feel a tad jealous of my Sister-in-Arms Blogger as I read her recent contribution; -- couldn't imagine doing that over here! Hypothermia comes firmly to mind! The whole thing sounded quite idyllic and from my armchair by the fire, I drifted into her little world for five minutes.

With hubby's eyes fixed firmly upon the football match on TV, daughter playing something energetic on her games consul, I took time out to write for a little while at least. Our Sunday dinner is simmering away in the pan. No one fancied anything in particular so I made soup. We had quite a bit of veg doing nothing in the fridge, so I threw it in a pan. So far so good!

I just feel as if I'm biding time before the event, the event being our trip out to Greece! Of course it's the Greek Island of Crete, the largest one of all and birthplace of the legendary Zeus, the Minoans and Minotaur the Bull. I've been to Knossos and walked amidst the ruins of the Minoan archeological site, supposedly the palace of King Minos. Clever folk the Greeks! There's definitely an air of mysteriousness surrounding the Greek Isles. Well at least that's the historical take on the place and very much mythological apart from the Minoans who did actually exist up until Santorini exploded and caused a huge tidal wave which wiped out civilisation on Crete!

The cuisine is supposed to be the healthiest in the world, just so happens that I can't eat it, but I do try a little! The olive oil is exported all over the world and I always bring a little home with me. Back to reality and my soup is almost ready. Here endeth the history lesson!


Sour Grapes

Posted by CFMBabs , 16 August 2008 · 575 views

My disappointment this afternoon was watching my football team lose, and being squashed into a corner of our local pub by a young man who would have been better suited to being at the zoo on the other side of the bars! I may be getting stuffy in my old age but I hate crowds, loud music and beer swilling males who call me darling, pet, or anything other than my proper name. To lose the match as well just confirmed my dismay with pretty much everything the day had to offer!

A bad loser I may be but since I don't go out very much the very least they could have done is won! Do I detect the taste of sour grapes then? Well of course I do. I stood for a whole 3 hours pressed up against a wall trying to see over a 7ft something giant who casually walked in from the street and then stood right in front of the screen. Someone like me who would be a suitable candidate for one of Snow White's little dwarves had little chance of seeing anything at all. In fact we did manage to score one goal -- I guessed that by the uproar that ensued around me, though by the time things had calmed down I didn't care because if that little lad in the replica shirt stood on my toe once more I might have been inclined to clip him round the ear in retaliation.

My hubby stood with friends and although he never drinks much beer, I could see him swaying with that daft grin on his red face which told me that he'd exceeded his quota! I was bloated and uncomfortable because although I don't drink alcohol, it's difficult not to drink at all in a pub even if you are only drinking soda pop. I asked for no ice in my drink but each time was the same, a watery un-fizzy drink which set my fingers off into spasm and my teeth into throbbing shooting pains up my nose and into my head. How much more could I complain?

We headed home in pouring rain. Hubby's head was bobbing up and down in the front as he tried to keep awake. An idiot in a 4x4 pulled out on me and I slammed on the brakes -- typical of my day! Back home, my hubby falls asleep on the settee with me constantly shouting "Steve" as he snores loudly above the TV, not that there is much to watch. I think bedtime won't come soon enough tonight with rain streaming down the windows and my frame of mind I think it's the best place to be!


Cracked Up

Posted by CFMBabs , 14 August 2008 · 563 views

In my daily routine, I try to do as much as I can. I visit my dad and I've helped him settle into his new home. It's not been an easy task because despite his years, he didn't have much of an idea about what he describes as woman things. Now by that he means housework, kitchen appliances and general household chores. Old-fashioned he may be, and certainly a male chauvenist by today's standards but that's just the way the elder generation are and I accept that he means no malice.

I arranged delivery of a washer/dryer. His kitchen is very small and it really was the best option. I got a pretty good deal -- so good that it puts my own washing machine to shame! I think the only thing it does not do is get the dirty clothes itself and iron. There are so many different knobs and settings, mine only has two, that I stood scratching my head wondering which one did what!

I didn't have much time between rushing around for my hubby and daughter and then returning the clock, which I'm sure by now you all know about. My dad asked me if I could help him sort the washing, he was running out of certain clothing. I quickly read through the manual, stuffed all the clothes in the drum, twiddled some knobs and then switched on. I made my farewell, dashing off to collect my daughter from work (she finally got herself a little term break job) and then continued home where I arrived to a ringing phone which I missed because I couldn't get through the door fast enough!
There were several messages on my answerphone, mostly nothing much but sales people trying to sell me something I didn't need, want or ever would use, and then there was dad!

"That washing machine's still going round," he said!

I rang him back to explain that it takes a couple of hours to go through the programmes and especially as it dries them as well, he'd need to be patient. I went about my normal evening and the phone rang again around 6pm.

"It's still going," said this rather worried voice

"Dad, it will stop soon!" I said reassuringly. "Don't worry."

My hubby decided to go out for a pizza, so we left about 6.30. I was a bit worried about my dad, hoping he wouldn't try and force the door open on the machine, he's done that before! I rang him from my mobile.

"It's still going -- I'm going to pull the plug out"

"Leave it another half hour and then see if stops, if not pull the plug out then."

We arrived home around 10 and I had a message on the phone.

"It's stopped now love, and I'm going to bed."

My dad rang this morning at 7.30 -- I cracked up!

"You should see my clothes, they've shrunk. My shirts would fit Action Man, my trousers are at half mast, I think they were on too long!"
Trying not to laugh I said I would go round this afternoon. I don't know what I can do about it but I have visions of my dad standing there with a shirt half way up his torso and trousers up to his knees. Too much to bare I think and I'm sorry but I will be in fits of laughter!

Trust me to make an absolute mess of things, just when he was beginning to think I was the clone of my mum -- she never shrank anything in the wash and her shirts were always crisp and clean. I bet my mum is laughing somewhere. My dad certainly will not!


Expensive Time

Posted by CFMBabs , 14 August 2008 · 599 views

My little rhyme told of my failed attempt to do the least bit of anything right. So, I buy a clock! Okay it's broken -- so what! Back it went to the antique fayre and a very disappointed man handed back my £120.00 pounds with a degree of reluctance and a solemn face.

I can't help feeling a little bit sick that the clock that took my interest, and excited me to the point of a child in a sweetshop, was no longer part of the family -- gone like the family heirloom I promised Steph who incidently didn't care one way or the other.

"It smelled" She said "Musty like an old dog"

"It was oak and over 100 years old" I said in it's defense "and it's seen some action over the years"

"Well it's certainly had it's day" She snapped, and with that disappeared upstairs to her room.

My dad was more sympathetic and duly offered to buy me another if we went back. There was one I recalled. It was hung near the exit but the price I couldn't see. We decided to have a look and headed to the fayre this afternoon. To my relief it was still there and when I asked the guy for a price -- no wonder! £660.00 -- WHAT!!!

"It's a Thirty day clock and Westminster chime" He said

"Blimey! I'd want Big Ben and Westminster for that!" I said

My dad's wallet went away like a slight of hand and even though he walks slowly with a stick, he was out of there quicker than a cat with its tail on fire.

"Phew, that's a lot for a clock," he said. "It's a lot of money just for time."

I agreed wholeheartedly and with that came home.

I'll wait for the right clock to come along. Not my week for bargains!


Silent Clock Tick Tock!

Posted by CFMBabs , 13 August 2008 · 576 views

A little treat was given to me, a day around the fayre
Myself, my daughter and my dad were with me there
I suddenly stopped and gazed in awe
A lovely old clock was what I saw
Oh! wouldn't it look lovely on my wall
As we stood and gazed at the stall

"Cheap at half the price he said!"
I already had a price in my head
"I'll do you a deal, it's Victorian Y'Know"
My excitement began to grow
My hubby will kill me I'm sure
If this deal he makes secure

I thought a while and pictured it so
With all my decor it would go
An old ticking clock with a sweet chime too
Was tempting my purse. What should I do?
"Oh get it" said dad and with it a smile
I hadn't bought anything for a while
So I finally said yes and the clock was mine
I've got a place where it will look fine

I eagerly rushed home with my beautiful clock
Avoiding the bumps and avoiding a knock
I hung it on a bare plain wall
Being careful that it wouldn't fall
I wound it up then felt quite sick
No matter how much I tried it would not tick
I set it for the correct time
But all it did was slowly chime
It wasn't working despite his word
And a silent clock is all I heard.

I feel a sense of sorrow, dismay
About my purchase yesterday
Salesperson's skills I certainly lack
Today I have to take it back
"You were out of your mind" said my hubby with disgust
"Buying antiques from someone with no trust"
"I bet he laughed all the way to the bank"
"And for that he had you to thank"

My sad old clock is flat on the table
My little dream became a fable
It did look nice on the wall of brick
But it never began to tock or tick!
And now I'm eating humble pie
Back it goes, bye, bye

So much for my antique find
I never even got to wind!


Household Servant

Posted by CFMBabs , 13 August 2008 · 580 views

Ah! The sun. What is that big ball of light in the sky? I haven't seen that since.......er.....mmmm! Whatever! It feels like Autumn out there, damp, cold and not very August like. I have two layers of clothing on my back, and I can't help wondering why I should be walking around like this in so called summer?

My dad's got his worry head on this morning. I've just taken his 5th call in less than an hour. He's worried about his car tax because he couldn't find the registration documents. Turns out that I had one of the documents and he the other, why, I do not know? Anyway with that problem sorted out I thought he would relax but to no avail! He rang me back worrying about going to the post office to tax his vehicle to which I pointed out that it was only due at the end of the month. With a degree of satisfaction, or so it seemed, he rang off and I went to make myself coffee. I'd hardly got into the kitchen before the phone rang again.

"What time are you coming to see me today?"

"Dad, I'm coming over this afternoon"

"Will you tax my car for me?"

"Urrgh!" I snorted. "See you later"

I went outdoors to feed my chickens. On the way back from the shed I heard the phone ringing again. I didn't run because the last time I did that I fell! and anyhow it would have switched to answerphone by the time I'd reached the door. This is pretty much a usual day. I just begin to do something and the phone rings or someone comes to visit or my daughter wants to go out! My hubby comes home for lunch and I haven't done a single thing. They wonder why I don't sit and have my enteral feed? Can you imagine running around all day with a backpack strapped over your shoulder, trying to do all the things I'm supposed to do? I despair sometimes!

You may wonder how I have time to write a blog. Truth is I haven't, but I'm doing it all the same or else I think I would blow! With that in mind, I need to clean the kitchen. I left the dishes last night -- if you manage to clear up every night, you are a hero in my book! Bear in mind that I don't eat anything I make, I think I have a right not to be a slave and if my family leave their dishes, I simply leave them too but my method never works. I cannot shame them into washing the dishes and I just have double the work in the morning.

Must go, my concience is killing me!


Cunning Plan!

Posted by CFMBabs , 13 August 2008 · 590 views

Oh yes I'm off to Greece again, I can hardly wait!
I dangled a juicy carrot and my hubby took the bait
I played Greek music loudly and out came the sun
"Turn that din off," he said, though only said in fun
I got out his fancy shorts and placed for him to see
Do you like these my dear? the one's below the knee

I got out the photos saying do you remember when?
I can picture myself back there, I looked so tanned then
He began to take an interest when my daughter laughed out loud
He was caught dancing the Zorba kicking his legs high and proud
He looked a proper twit, although he thought he was the best
He looked like he was having a fit in his shorts and yellow vest

Let me see! was his cry as we put away the proof
Snatching at the packet and nearly hitting the roof
What's wrong with my dancing I was every bit as good?
Then he remembered the woman on whose toe he stood
She spoke a foreign language but you could clearly tell
She wasn't very happy coz her finger wagged as well

Sorry! was his sweaty reply as danced like the Greeks
The art of silly dancing and king of all the geeks
My daughter had disowned him and kept her head down low
He's not my dad -- please mum can we go?

Our last trip to Greece and the practice he does need
So straight into action I planned my dirty deed
I praised his wonderful effort and then moaned about the rain
I moaned about my Raynaud's and how we should go back again
I think I may need an infusion if my fingers keep turning blue
And you'll have to survive a week and make your dinners too
I'd rather save the effort and fix my problem for free
The sun does absolute wonders for all of us you see.

It didn't take much persuading when I kept on with my plan
And finally he realised he was a beaten man.
We'll see what's available what deal we can get
So I switched on the computer and clicked on internet!
It didn't take long to secure our seat
A bargain price so hard to beat
So I clicked on "book" and off we go!
Back to Greece -- I told you so!
My case is packed with all my wear
I cannot wait to get there!
I'll be out at night without a vest
And get a tan, well I'll do my best

To feel the sun upon my skin
Is worth the nicest lottery win
No raynaud's attacks in my fingers and toes
To go outdoors in skimpy clothes
To sit and watch the lovely sunset
Instead there's rain in Blighty I bet
To hear the music in my ears
The end of the day nears

The twinkling night lights fill the bay
So different from the heat of the day
I can see an ocean liner as it passes by
On the horizon against the sky

Oh yes! I'm off to Greece again
Away from all the cold and rain
Who knows what company we will meet
On my idyllic Greek island down on Crete!


Writer's Constipation!

Posted by CFMBabs , 10 August 2008 · 720 views

Nothing much to report but such a drab week with nothing worth the effort of writing. I hate to mention the summer, you'd hardly know that it was! I have deepening sense of hatred for the lovely girl who delivers the weather report each morning, who always forcasts the rain with a sickly smile and a promise of 5 minutes of sunshine. No fun and no surprise then that things are pretty much the same with my gaping hole in the side of my house. How can you build a home in such conditions -- a pretty serious situation is developing at the wrong end of summer!

As I look across the yard I tut and shake my head at the weeds which have climbed tall and remember my failed attempt to remove them. It's so annoying when you try to grow nice cultivated flowers and fail, weeds grow beautifully without intervention, such is nature! Of course, I wouldn't like to be out there getting drenched in the cold every day, no wonder they give up and die!

As for the dilemma I mentioned in an earlier blog, Greece won through as opposed to a long haul flight to Australia. With that sorted, the next problem is if my husband can have the time off work he needs. He's had so much time off lately mainly due to the death of his father which is perfectly understandable. I can't see him begging on his knees for a holiday so much depends upon the mood of his boss -- let's hope he's not ruled by the weather or we may be very dissappointed. I, for one would be mighty upset if I couldn't have one last trip to my beloved Greece before the end of summer.

My stomach has been nothing short of a nuisance over the past few days, keeping me awake at night and achy limbs during the day. I supposedly have spondylosis and my neck sure hurts if I try and sleep with more than two pillows high. The trouble is if I don't I may choke or suffer terrible heartburn so I can't win! I can actually hear my bones crack and creak, and although it may be a little age related, I can't help thinking that sclero plays it's part also! I've also had nosebleeds -- what on earth is going on? I'm going all wrong with many things to complain about but not worth mentioning! I find that's true because in the grand scheme of things every little ailment is insignificant in comparison!

My meeting tonight will give me little to contribute since we've had such a boring, depressing couple of months. Writer's constipation I call it!

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