Archive for the ‘interests’ Category

The fun of Quizzing

Monday, February 27th, 2012

For a while now I’ve been going along to a monthly quiz at my local pub with a friend, her husband and her daughter. It’s been quite an interesting experience!

I’m quite good at general knowledge, but I haven’t really got any specialist subjects. I don’t know much about sport, films, chemistry and lots of other things. I do enjoy listening to and watching quizzes on radio and television and you pick up interesting facts that way.

My friend and her husband are retired librarians, and so have some specialised knowledge, and their daughter being younger is good at pop music, films and actors.

So altogether I think we make a good team. My friend’s husband especially seems to know a lot about everything and has an amazing memory, so we are usually ahead of the other teams by half time.

Then we have a problem! There’s always some sort of specialist round. A sheet of terrible photos of actors or obscure car emblems to be identified. Last night we had to name each of the properties and other things – in the correct order – on a Monopoly Board!!

We looked at it and felt our 5 1/2 point lead slipping away! It’s years since I’ve played Monopoly. But even if you play it regularly, would you remember the exact order of everything on the board?

We just had to guess, and amazingly we managed to get 5 out of 39!! Our only competitor got 21 out of 39. I don’t know how they managed to do that!

There were a few more rounds where we managed to pull back some points but we ended up losing by six points. I did wonder if it was worth learning what’s on a Monopoly Board, but when is it likely to crop up again!!?

If you’re trying to remember what it looks like, this will jog your memory…..

Potato Peel Pie

Wednesday, January 25th, 2012

I was recently invited to join a Book Club. It was something new to me, but it sounded fun.

I read on average one or two books a week, and lately I’ve been having difficulty finding something that I want to read that I haven’t read already. So to have a book suggested to me seemed like a good idea.

The first book choice was The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Schaffer and Annie Barrows. I thought it was a very strange title but of course as I read the book, the title made sense. This is what the book is about….

January 1946: writer Juliet Ashton receives a letter from a stranger, a founding member of the Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society. And so begins a remarkable tale of the island of Guernsey during the German occupation, and of a society as extraordinary as its name. (Taken from the book’s website)

This was the first novel I had come across that was written entirely in letter form, know as an Epistolary novel. Apparently that’s how novels developed.

I very much enjoyed the book and learnt things about life under German occupation that I didn’t know and hadn’t imagined.

It was fun discussing the book at the Book Club meeting and together we chose the next book to read. I’ve ordered a copy and I’m waiting for the postman to arrive with it. This time I’m going to have a notebook nearby and jot down my thoughts as I read.

Persistance pays off

Tuesday, December 20th, 2011

For quite a while I’ve been entering a daily competition on a particular website. I do it at some time during the day when I open all the other sites, forums etc that I look at daily.

In the run up to Christmas, they also have an Advent calendar competition which is fun. There are some shelves filled with presents, and each day the right one is sparkling with stars. You log in, click on the beautifully wrapped gift, and then the ribbon undoes itself, the paper unwraps and there it is – empty! They say, ‘Sorry you haven’t won. Try again tomorrow’

But today was different! When the present unwrapped itself, there was something inside – I’d won!!

How exciting! An early Christmas present! I’ve won a selection of Belvoir fruit cordials. They sound delicious! I like cordials, especially in the summer. They’re lovely and refreshing. I’d noticed these before and thought how nice they looked but have never seen any in the shops. Now I’ll be able to try them!

Using the Library

Wednesday, February 23rd, 2011

I enjoy reading and so I visit one of my local libraries at least once a week. I usually read 2 or 3 books a week, but I like to have some spare ones ready in case I run out, or if I’m trying an author new to me I might not like their style.

I think libraries are very important and the cuts in services are worrying. I hope that everyone will still have access to a library after the cuts have been made.

I took this photo in Upton Upon Severn library. It’s a lovely modern building with a light open feel to it, and I love it’s round windows.

The round window

Computing in the library part two

Tuesday, September 7th, 2010

Well the IT men came, and I showed them what the problem was. There was a message on the screen to say that the current system they were using couldn’t support Flickr. So they decided they needed to upgrade the two computers that my friend and I were using to Internet Explorer 8. One of them did say that he thought they’d already been upgraded, and showed surprise that they hadn’t, but they still didn’t do the others, only the two we were using!

That took about half an hour, but it didn’t make the slightest bit of difference! One of my Flickr contacts made a comment on yesterday’s post saying that it’s probably the library’s filtering software. I’ve reported that to them, but they don’t seem to be very interested!

They tell me that they only have people use their computers for checking emails or looking into their family history. Apparently I’m the first person who has ever wanted to look at Flickr on their computers!

And it looks as though I’ll be the last too!

Computing in the library

Monday, September 6th, 2010

I’m not at home at the moment, so I went to the library to catch up on Flickr, to see if anyone has made any comments on my photots and to have a look at and make comments on the photos that my Flickr friends have added to their photostreams.

I remembered my user name and my password and got myself logged in and up came my stream on the screen. It looked a bit odd, and I was wondering what was wrong with it when I realised that there were no photos showing. Now that’s a bit of a problem for a photo sharing website, isn’t it!

The library staff put me on another computer, and then another one, but still no photos! Now they’ve sent for an IT expert!

I hope they can sort it out. I get withdrawal symptoms if I have to spend too long away from Flickr!

If you’d like to see my Flickr photostream, click on Katie-Rose’s photostream on the right by the photos. I hope you’ll be able to see them!

Finding my way round

Sunday, March 14th, 2010

If you’re a follower of my blog, you’ll know that it’s been missing since the beginning of February.

Someone had managed to hack into it and do several nasty things to it. They had hijacked it, so that any visitors would be transferred to a Chinese website of a dubious nature.

When I tried to look at it, and was sent to the Chinese website, virus warnings started flashing up on my screen and going crazy. They told me that spyware was running in the background and could take my personal information. I turned the computer off quickly, and had to have it taken away to be cleaned up.

A friend was able to sort out my blog for me by finding what had been added and getting rid of it. He’s now upgraded the version of Wordpress that I’m using as the newer version will be more secure and less likely to be hacked into again. Thank you for all the time and effort you spent investigating and mending my blog and upgrading it. I’m glad you know so much more about these sort of things than I do!

It’s lovely to be able to post again, I really missed it. I am having a bit of difficulty finding my way round though! The new, upgraded dashboard is completely different from the one I’m used to and have been using since October 2008. It’s quite disorientating when you’re very used to something you use often and suddenly it’s gone, and something unfamiliar is there in it’s place. You have to work at doing something you’ve been used to doing without thinking. Perhaps I’ll get used to it quickly. I don’t really have any other option, do I?!

Full Moon at perigee

Saturday, January 30th, 2010

At last yesterday I managed to get a reasonable shot of the Moon when it was (nearly) full! It was very cold outside and there was frozen snow on my car, which had taken a lot of scraping off. So I could only stay out for a few minutes at a time before coming in to warm up and then go out and have another go.

The photo below was taken at 7.30pm, 10 hours or so before the actual moment of the Moon being completely full. But of course I won’t see that from here. It won’t rise until around 6.00pm tonight, so if it’s clear, it will be at least 12 hours past full when I see it again.

The prominent crater Tycho shows up quite well. Tycho is a lunar impact crater in the southern lunar highlands which was named after the Danish astronomer Tycho Brahe. It’s about 85 kilometers across, and has rays of impact material radiating from it. To see where Tycho is, click on the photo which will take you to my Flickr photostream where I’ve added a note to show where Tycho is. Hold your cursor over the Moon to see it.

I hope to be able to get another shot of the Moon tonight, because today it’s at perigee. This is the nearest point of the Moon’s elliptical orbit in it’s cycle, and today it will be the nearest to us this year, apart from October. It’s distance away is around 359700 km or 223510 miles.

The furthest point of the Moon’s elliptical orbit in each cycle is called the apogee. The more extreme perigees and apogees often occur around January.

Apparently January’s full Moon is called the Wolf Moon which comes from the hungry wolf packs that would howl outside the villages of Native Americans in the coldness of January.

The forecast for tonight is clear skies and very cold, so hopefully I will be able to add another day to my collection of shots of the Moon on every day of it’s visible phases.

Full Moon at perigee

Feeling Christmassy

Saturday, December 19th, 2009

I’ve started to feel Christmassy now. The lights and decorations being up don’t do it, because they’re up in time for my Birthday, and that’s what they make me think of. What’s made me feel like is a Christmas play and a flower arrangement.

The children from the local Primary School did three performances of their play, and the people of the village were invited to one of them, so I decided to go along. It was really good. Very well organised and performed. It had a Christian Christmas theme, although it wasn’t a nativity play. All sorts of things had been woven into it, including a version of X Factor! One of the acts was two young boys singing. They introduced themselves ‘I’m George, and he’s Henry, so we’re called Genry.’ I love it when topical popular things are included in something traditional, and of course they both sang a lot better than Jedward!!

Every year I’m invited to help decorate my local Church ready for Christmas. Lots of people help and we have a large flower arrangement on all the windowsills. I really enjoy doing them because I like doing things big and there’s lots of space I can use. I had some red baubles that I don’t use because I like to use purple, turquoise and silver on my Christmas Tree, so I decided to wire them and use them. I like the result. I think it’s worked well. The candles at the sides will be lit for the Christmas services..

So I’m definately feeling more like Christmas now, especially as I’ve had another couple of mince pies.

Christmas flower arrangement

Still eating beans

Thursday, October 29th, 2009

Eating my runner beans

I’m still enjoying eating my home grown runner beans! I love going into the garden and picking them fresh to bring them in and cook them straight away. Now the clocks have changed and we’ve gone back to GMT, I have to remember to pick them early because it’s too dark by 5.00pm. It’s hard enough to find them in good light because they hide behind their leaves, so in the dark it’s impossible! I suppose that’s one advantage of having my hours cut. I can get home early, pick my beans and cook a proper meal instead of being too tired to cook and just snacking.

We’ve had such amazing weather during September and October, so warm and mild and sunny, that I expect it’s quite unusual for me to still be eating my own beans when it’s nearly November, but I don’t know as I haven’t grown them before. Does anyone else know?

There are still plenty of little beans on the plant needing a few days to mature so that I can eat them, so I expect it will a race betweem them and the frost. I would imagine that the first frost we have will turn the plant black and that will be the end of them for this year. I will definately grow them again. I’ve enjoyed it. It was fun watching them growing, and I love eating them. They’re so sweet and tender, so much better than the ones you can buy in the shops. Next year I’m going to expand my vegetable plot and try some broad beans as well. I’d like to try corn on the cob and courgettes too.

The photo shows the beans cooked and ready to eat. They’re sitting in a bowl of my favourite china, Sophie Conran for Portmeirion.